Spirituality

The Bipartisan Campaign to Make America Hate Again

But First Some Unfinished Business...

1970 Portfolio (fire survivors)-13 - Copy      Here's the photo I tried to run on 31 May but couldn't due to what blog-server Typepad  apologetically says was a software breakdown: from the 1967 Memorial Day Police Riot in Manhattan's Tompkins Square Park. (Photo by Loren Bliss © 1967, 2011, 2022, 2023; thanks to Publisher Scott Orr, this work was resurrected last year by an NYC art journal, BSceneZine, Volume 1, issue 9.)

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TO UNDERSTAND HOW “Make America Great Again” is in horrible truth a euphemism for “Make America Hate Again,” it is necessary we recognize why the New Deal was so thoroughly despised by the USian1 ruling class and why its few enduring vestiges remain under such relentless attack today.

From the perspective of those who consider themselves our masters, the New Deal threatened the ethos of racial, ethnic, gender and class hatred they have imposed on the North American working class2 since colonial times. Were the New Deal to fulfill its potential of universal socioeconomic security, it would end  the dog-eat-dog competition for survival that fuels identity politics. It would thereby deny the ruling class its most effective weapon for preserving and expanding its own dictatorial power. No longer could the aristocracy keep us powerless by imposing  austerity, limiting the availability of jobs, housing, food and healthcare,  and weaponizing the resultant hardships to ensure we remain divided against ourselves in life-or-death competition for survival.3    

In this context, let us not forget two pivotal facts: firstly, that the primary purpose of both the Italian Fascist Party and the German Nazi Party was to exterminate any and all forms of socialism – to destroy beyond any possibility of resurrection the one and only ethos in our species’ history that openly seeks global working-class solidarity by proclaiming it the only effective defense against the ecogenocidal consequences of capitalist moral imbecility; secondly, that the New Deal had the selfsame purpose of staving-off socialist revolution and preserving capitalism,  though it sought to do so not by the brute force of fascism or nazism, but by humanitarian concessions universal enough to ameliorate capitalism's infinite malevolence. Thus the New Deal began nullifying capitalism's  traditional, self-protective compulsions to intra-working-class racial, ethnic and gender conflicts. To eliminate the need for revolutionary transformation into Soviet-style proletarian dictatorship -- a need widely recognized in an era in which the Communist Party had grown to be the third largest political organization in USian history -- the New Deal offered working-class solidarity via unionism and pledged to control capitalist greed by a combination of collective bargaining and progressive legislation.

But the capitalist aristocracy clearly understood such concessions would radically reduce and perhaps permanently eliminate their ability to maintain maximum power, which they had repeatedly done by fostering enough hateful conflict amongst the races, ethnicities and genders within the working class to ensure we remain disunited -- and therefore hopelessly defenseless against whatever outrages or atrocities they might  choose to inflict. On the rare occasions the USian working class managed to transcend identity politics and unite in a common front, as at Blair Mountain and the battle that ensued, as we momentarily achieved on the Lower East Side of Manhattan during the Countercultural '60s -- thus the post-Memorial-Day relevance of the above photograph and the report linked in its cutlines -- or as we briefly attempted via Occupy, we were soon subjugated by brute force. Though in Occupy -- where I revealed myself to be a near-lifelong Marxian and was welcomed as an elder activist -- we were also beset internally by the solidarity-smashing self-obsessed egotism in which so many younger USians have been relentlessly conditioned literally from birth.      

Like their penchant for violence, the aristocrats' identity-politics strategy is at least as old as Rome: divide et impera; divide and rule.

And the USian ruling class -- no doubt with the savvy assistance of some the Original (NSDAP) Nazi war criminals infiltrated into USian society by the government -- it has weaponized it as never before.

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A DAMNING PATTERN of historical facts, a vast, 90-year body of circumstantial evidence far stronger than what would be necessary to win convictions in any U.S. criminal court, tells us the present-day effort by the “Republican” (sic) Christonazi/Neoconfederate Party to transform the U.S. into a white-male-supremacist theocracy  -- this thoroughly enabled by the mainstream-media-obscured, post-JFK function of  the “Democratic” (sic) Party as the Republicans’ Fifth Column --  dates back to the failed Bankers’ Plot of 1933 and the federal government’s millionaire-mandated decision in 1934 to drop its congressional investigation of the plotters, thereby granting these ruling-class perpe-traitors de facto immunity.

Forced by the exposure and defeat of their plot to reckon with the fact the nation could not be nazified overnight, the fathers and grandfathers of today’s ruling class conceived a clandestine, far-more-diabolical strategy of three parts. First they began the slow-motion process of co-opting fundamentalist Christianity and turning it into a dependably obedient, ldeologically lockstep, politically formidable, less publicly violent variant of the Sturmabteilung. Next they cemented a permanent Nazi/Wall-Street alliance by enabling the International Business Machines corporation (IBM) to organize Hitler’s genocide program. Lastly – after the Red Army’s sweeping victory at Stalingrad made it obvious Germany would loose the war – they ordered their governmental lackeys to begin recruiting vast numbers of upper echelon Original (NSDAP) Nazi war criminals as U.S. government advisors and comrades-at arms.

With the murder of Medgar Evers as its prelude -- say his name --  then came, as predictably as night follows day, the kill-the-New-Deal-forever coup of 22 November 1963 – the assassination of President John Fitzgerald Kennedy, its cover-up by the Warren Commission and all the horrors that relentlessly followed:

  • The Vietnam War;
  • The attack on the USS Liberty, which is now revealed (see below) as the false-flag opener in the Johnson Regime’s failed attempt to justify a thermonuclear Pearl Harbor against the Soviet Union;
  • An entire decade of obviously political martyrdom: (say their names: Malcolm X, Michael Schwerner, James Chaney, Andrew Goodman, Viola Liuzzo, Martin Luther King Jr., Sen. Robert Kennedy, Fred Hampton, Mark Clark, Allison Krause, Jeffrey Glen Miller, Sandra Lee Scheuer, William Knox Schroeder, Philip Lafayette Gibbs, James Earl Green, Karen Silkwood -- and remember there are no doubt many more such martyrs  unnamed and lost to history);
  • The Nazi-war-criminal advised Central Intelligence Agency's concurrent, near-total suppression of the Counterculture;
  • The subsequent imposition of the USian socioeconomic variant of nazism cleverly euphemized as "neoliberalism," perfected by the University of Chicago's economics department in the torture-lab of Pinochet's Chile,  vectored into USia by the Carter Regime,  brought to full malignancy by the so-called Reagan Revolution and further metastasized by`its Fifth Column of Democrat collaborators led by the Clintons and Obama (with Barack the Betrayer no doubt also chosen specifically to inflame the white electorate's always-simmering, post-Katrina-proven racism);
  • The ongoing, ever-more-overt nazification of the nation and the simultaneous rise of Neoconfederate fanaticism  rendered unstoppable by Trump’s racist/misogynist victory over the (deliberately?) ill-advised Hillary Clinton in 2016;
  • And finally the dark undertow of cumulative consequences turned fatal to the solidarity of the federal union  -- and probably deadly to any last lingering vestiges of USian democratic process --  by the combination of Biden's election, Trump's attempted putsch against him on 6 January 2021 and the ever-more-violent, ever-more-irreconcilable hostilities so aroused. 

Now we suffer a presidency so "change-we-can-believe-in" treacherous to progressives and nevertheless so infuriating to the Christonazis and Neoconfederates, its chronic unpopularity remains unprecedentedly constant at around 55 percent. And with the Beguiler's compulsory, no-choice-allowed reelection candidacy rammed down our proverbial throats by the political puppets of the ruling class, it is almost certain to hand these biological and/or ideological descendants of the Bankers' Plot perpe-traitors their  final, forever end-of-the-U.S.-as-we-knew-it triumph next year -- this as the mainstream media's propagandistic complicty approaches the level of an undisguised atrocity.

When we view all these bits of  circumstantial evidence as a totality, as a logical sequence of cause-and-effect, we have a story that  reads like a sequel to Mein Kampf -- or an indictment written from the Rise chapters of The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich, William Schirer's epic history of Nazi Germany.

Which brings us back to MAGA – “Make America Great Again” – as a diabolically clever euphemism for MAHA – Make America Hate Again: the only way our self-appointed masters can guarantee our far greater numbers remain irrelevant, especially now that our ever-more-desperate struggles to survive are increasingly targeted as acts of revolutionary defiance.

Here then are three recent betrayals in which the Democrats prove beyond any possibility of denial their ultimate function as the Christonazi/Neoconfederate Fifth Column:

Betrayal Number One: The Biden Regime’s Federal Bureau of Investigation -- part of the secret-police apparatus commanded by the Department of Homeland Security --  is now serving the Christonazis by denouncing abortion-rights activists as a new domestic terror threat and hunting them accordingly. This terrifying disclosure follows Intercept’s revelations of how Biden the Beguiler sicced the feds on pro-choice Jane’s Revenge – a story completely suppressed by the mainstream media propaganda apparatus in its function as the world’s first privately owned, for-profit version of Josef Goebbels’ Reich Ministry for Public Enlightenment and Propaganda -- and a decision in 100-percent opposition  to Biden’s allegedly “evolved” pro-choice stance, but -- of course -- entirely in keeping with his anti-choice history as documented by The Guardian and by Rolling Stone.

Betrayal Number Two (quoted text from Common Dreams): “The details of a debt ceiling/spending deal between President Biden and Speaker Kevin McCarthy include a number of provisions that...fast-track new fossil fuel development, including swift actions to bolster approval of the controversial Mountain Valley Pipeline, weakening of the National Environmental Policy Act, and freezing of the budget for the Environmental Protection Agency.” Obviously the Democrats' pledge to protect the life-sustaining remnants of our ever-more-toxified earthly enviroment is but another example of "change we can believe in," the most outrageous Big Lie ever fed the tragically gullible USian electorate.  

Betrayal Number Three (quoted text from Just Security):For months, environmental and racial justice activists in Atlanta have challenged the destruction of a local forest for a police training facility. Following an extended draconian crackdown, the Atlanta Police Department on May 31 arrested three people who operated a bail fund providing legal support to demonstrators. This escalatory action directly targeted constitutional rights to free speech and legal representation, drawing widespread criticism from civil rights groups such as the NAACP Legal Defense Fund, which called the arrests a ‘discretionary misuse of law enforcement’ to intimidate activists.” To justify these unprecedented arrests, the Georgia authorities cited the characterization of the Atlanta activists as terrorists by the Biden Regime’s Department of Homeland Security, essentially already behaving as if it were the USian equivalent of the Third Reich’s Reichssicherheitshauptamt (RSHA).  Wake up, people;  the de facto Fourth Reich is already upon us.

As Winston Churchill is credibly said to have privately commented on the eve of the Battle of Britain, "only a miracle can save us now." 

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Five More News Reports That Reflect How MAGA Means MAHA

Swatstika-brandishing Nazis, other DeSantis supporters rally outside Disney World in Orlando, Florida. An ever-more-common expression of genocidal hatred legitimized by Trump and his Christonazi/Neoconfederate Republicans. “As usual, the Florida governor and Republican presidential candidate Ron DeSantis has refused to denounce his Nazi supporters.”

Unknown sadists target children by pouring muriatic acid on playground slides; several kids suffer burns.This is another, especially wrenching manifestation of the hatred that increasingly typifies USia since the Trump candidacy legitimized its expression. (To put this atrocity in its proper perspective, note that thanks to MAHA, the definitively capitalist ethos of infinitely selfish moral imbecility now rules, its hateful ubiquity proven by the fact that as of 14 June, USia’s burgeoning legions of moral imbeciles have run amok with guns to confirm their ultimate suitability for jobs in maximum-profit upper-management by murdering 351 humans and wounding 1,032 more in 272 mass shootings already this year.)

Muslim-governed Michigan city bans LGBTQ Pride flags on all public property. Thanks to the lifetime Christonazification of the Supreme Court, USian religions can now be as openly hateful as they want. (Note Grover Norquist’s assertion fanatical Muslims and fanatical Christians share the same values and the implicit belief they should therefore unite to impose anti-Jewish theocracy on USia.)

Which already exists in misogynistic form as proven by the hateful Southern Baptist declaration women are biblically unfit to serve the church in any pastoral office. (NOTE: I had not heard of TrendyDigest before seeking a detailed report on this example of MAHA-in-action, but after nearly an hour of online research, its work and this Aljazeera dispatch were by far the best, most contextually detailed stories I could find. My special thanks to TD for a chronology that suggests the fanatically patriarchal Baptists regard the disempowerment of women as the final solution to the denomination’s innumerable sex-abuse scandals.)

Last but not least, and most assuredly echoing the Original (NSDAP) Nazi declaration of genocide against “life unfit for life,” we have the newest Chrisionazi/Neoconfederate declaration of potentially deadly hate against elderly and disabled people.

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And Five MAHA-Relevant Comment-Thread Posts from Other Websites

How LBJ Tried to Start World War III; Massive Cover-Up Continues After 55 Years. Evidence suggests the Israelis were ordered to attack the USS Liberty as part of a false-flag operation intended to justify a U.S. invasion of Egypt to oust Nasser, thereby provoking a Soviet response LBJ would use to justify a thermonuclear first strike aimed at destroying the Soviet Union and giving the USian Empire Hitler’s ultimate goal of dictatorship over all the world’s nations and peoples.

My comment: Actually I think future historians -- if indeed our species has a future (which I gravely doubt) -- will cite 22 November 1963 as the permanent end of the United States as a democratic republic, much as 30 January 1933 (the date of Hitler's appointment as chancellor by von Hindenburg) marks the end of the Weimar Republic. I also suspect LBJ's criminally treasonous conspiracies so ruthlessly compromised the "Democratic" (sic) Party, it can never again be anything other than the Fifth Column of the "Republican" (sic) Christonazi/Neoconfederate Party. As to how those crimes were facilitated, I suspect the true enablers were the legions of diabolically clever upper-echelon Original (NSDAP) Nazi war criminals the USian government and ruling class embraced as advisors and comrades-at-arms, though the plutocrats’ passion for nazifying the U.S. is readily traceable to the 1933 Bankers' Plot and the federal grant of de facto immunity to its perpe-traitors in 1934.

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"The use of domestic terrorism charges against the environmental and animal liberation movements set important precedents for the repression Atlanta’s ‘Stop Cop City’ movement faces today.

My comment: Two points:

(1)--Anyone who (still) doubts 9/11 was the Reichstag Fire of the USian Empire and de facto Fourth Reich is either clinically deranged or hopelessly stupid.

(2)--Quoth Lev Bronstein, c. 1905: "In every gathering of three revolutionaries, there is at least one agent of the Okhrana."

Truly, nothing else need be said.

Later on the same thread, in supportive response to Nylene 13’s comments about the ruling class: Not just evil, but ecogenocidally Evil, planet-killing Evil, potentially solar-system and galaxy destroying Evil, bottomlessly Evil, infinitely Evil,  more Evil than any known language can possibly describe. But to our endless disadvantage, they are most assuredly not  stupid; instead, like their idols Hitler and Pinochet, they are malevolently cunning,   serial-killer malicious, vindictively sadistic moral imbeciles utterly without empathy or compassion, our dying world's true apex predators, omnipotent until they are brought down by some apocalypse,  whether self-inflicted or not, that will most likely be the end of our entire species. 

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"If the Police Can Decide Who Qualifies as a Journalist, There Is No Free Press. Where’s the outcry? Mainstream media have been strangely silent following the arrest of two reporters in North Carolina.”

My comment: USian so-called "mainstream media" is in fact the world's first privately owned, for-maximum-monopoly-profit version of Hitler's Reichsministerium für Volksaufklärung und Propaganda (Reich Ministry for Public Enlightenment and Propaganda), which was headed by Propaganda Minister Josef Goebbels and overseen by the Sicherheitsdienst -- the state security service also known as the SD --  in much the same way the USian mainstream media apparatus is overseen by the CIA.

Given the federal government's wholesale embrace of German Nazi war criminals as advisors and comrades-at-arms -- a process that began in 1944 (soon after the Red Army's sweeping victory at Stalingrad made it clear Germany would lose the war) -- it is clearly no coincidence the USian Empire developed deep-state institutions so similar to those of Nazi Germany.

The persecution of the two Asheville journalists and the persecution of alternative media in general, the latter dating to the clandestine suppression of the Counterculture that began shortly after the murder of President John Fitzgerald Kennedy, is thus among the more obvious consequences. 

Though that assassination and its subsequent decade of political murders was its enabling coup, the methodically relentless nazification of USia and its Empire actually dates to 1934, when the perpe-traitors of the pro-nazification Bankers' Plot -- the fathers and grandfathers of the plutocracy that now owns all USian politicians and controls them as puppets -- were granted federal immunity.

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The New York Times published...a column by Paul Krugman dismissing the role of Ukranian fascists in the mass murder of Jews and Soviet citizens during World War II and minimizing as mere ‘shadows’ their prominence in the present NATO proxy war against Russia. Krugman’s comment, ‘The Eyes of the World are Upon Ukraine,’ is a thoroughly dishonest and cynical apology for Ukrainian fascism, past and present.” 

My comment: Comrade Maclaman's welcome report on Paul Krugman's latest deceptions provides us with an exceptionally instructive example of how USia's so-called "mainstream media is in fact the world's first privately-owned, for-(maximum)-profit version of Hitler's Reichsministerium für Volksaufklärung und Propaganda (RMVP), the notorious Reich Ministry for Public Enlightenment and Propaganda headed by the equally notorious Josef Goebbels.

That its USian successor is a cluster of a half-dozen rigidly policed capitalist monopolies – The New York Times most assuredly included – enables it to march in purposefully fascistic lockstep even as it maintains a deceptive charade of superficial ideological differences.Thus in terms of their underlying messages of national exceptionalism and what amounts to divine-right global hegemony, there is ultimately no difference between The Times and Fox News.

And the apology for nazism that is the essence of the cited Krugman piece unquestionably makes that similarity undeniable. 

Not surprisingly given the legions of Original Nazi war criminals the USian government embraced as advisors and comrades-at-arms -- the "mainstream media" apparatus is closely monitored by the CIA, much as its Nazi forefather was monitored by the Sicherheitsdienst (SD), the state security agency of which the Gestapo was the most notorious part.

Also in Krugman's lies we again glimpse the far more devious USian variant of the blueprint for nazification provided by Hitler in Mein Kampf, a wretchedly written, unpleasantly tedious read which should nevertheless be studied closely by anyone who takes to heart Sun Tzu’s dictum of thoroughly knowing our enemy as the vital foundation of effective response.

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Why Did Trump Keep Classified Documents?

My comment: Given what we know of Trump's character and personality -- that is to say, his moral imbecility -- my guess is he was hoping to use classified, probably top-secret investigative material to blackmail his enemies, thereby turning them into his puppets. Nor would I put it past him to peddle military secrets for profit, as Mr. Vaill suggests.

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Plus One Comment Suppressed by The New York Times:

Is It Wrong to Bring a Child Into Our Warming World? (The magazine’s "Ethicist" columnist on personal responsibility and climate change.)

My (censored) comment: Seems to me in this instance the Ethicist misses the point. The ultimate question about bringing children into the world today is whether we have the right to create life we know will be subject to the unmitigated horrors -- ever-worsening environmental disaster and ever-more-tyrannical governance -- that now inescapably define our species' future. That's why every millennial I know -- and I know at least a dozen -- says they intend to remain childless. As one young woman memorably said in a group discussion about this very question: "I'm not an (expletive deleted) hereditary billionaire aristocrat -- and those are the only people left on this planet who can actually guarantee their children will not either die homeless or in some prison or concentration camp."

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And, in Closing, Three Random Glimpses of Reality:

FIRST THE TRULY BAD NEWS: as I have been hypothesizing at least since the beginning of the Ukraine War, Biden the Beguiler’s escalation of global thermonuclear terror to hitherto-unimaginable intensity is ultimately the declaration by his plutocratic puppet-masters they and their favored vassals now believe themselves sufficiently well-bunkered to survive whatever ecogenocidal horrors they choose to command their political puppets to inflict on us. And – yes – here thanks to The Guardian is irrefutable proof I read the evidence correctly.

THEN SOME (PARTIAL) GOOD NEWS: obviously – as indicated by other reports of a stunning, globally authenticated increase in wild-animal attacks – Nature has begun avenging herself against the perpetrators of what should properly be described as terminal climate change. (The good-news part is that here is still more solid proof of the Gaia Hypothesis – the scientific restatement of the core premise of the goddess-centered paganism that was our species’ first and longest-lasting religion – that our Mother Earth is alive, conscious and self-regulating.)

More darkly, Jackson Browne’s prophetic, wantonly disregarded warning of “the magnitude of her fury” is again confirmed.

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Though I'm Sorry I've Still No More Attempts at Writing Fiction

After emotionally, intellectually and journalistically coping with this week's news content, I'm admittedly tempted to dismiss my effort to write fiction as nothing more than psychological avoidance -- or at the very least, a wasteful distraction from tracking MAHA. But I'm nevertheless of two minds: one tells me fiction is by far the most effective way to disseminate a message -- witness George Orwell; the other tells me that if our species has a future at all, it will be in a world so constrained, fiction will be useless and therefore irrelevant. Obviously, what applies here is an ancient cliche: "time will tell."

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Three footnotes, with an apology Typepad's software won't allow them posted as such:

1As a matter of linguistic principle I refuse to libel the non-U.S. residents of the two American continents by applying the name of their larger homeland to the most ecogenocidally malignant nation in human history. Hence I have derived "USia" and "USian" from "United States" and "U.S." It is  a usage I am gratefully delighted to note others are adopting as their own, for it also recognizes the fact any notion of  "united" states is proven an ever-more-colossal Big Lie by the ongoing self-division of USia's  peoples into two separate nations that have already become mutual enemies and will in all probability eventually go to war with one another.  One of these nations, which includes my home state of Washington, is a federation of approximately 14 mostly coastal states  in which human rights remain meaningful and the quest for improved social services including universal health care therefore remain viable causes. The other nation is a 36-state Christonazi/Neoconfederate dictatorship  hell-bent on imposing a zero-tolerance theocratic white-supremacist male tyranny openly modeled on Hitler's Third Reich.  (As always, language is a reflection of reality, and the reality expressed by the USian appropriation of the labels "America" and "American" is the intent of the USian ruling class -- the .01 Percenters -- to greedily expand their already inconceivably vast fortunes by conquering the entire two-continent landmass, subjugating and enslaving all its peoples and looting its natural resources until its environment is nothing more than a continent-sized version of the poisonous barren this obscene aristocracy is already making of the West Virginia coalfields and the Mississippi Delta region of the Gulf of Mexico.) 

2"Working class" as used herein is defined as any and all of us dependent upon regular paychecks for survival – that is, the entire 99.9 Percent of the population.     

3Beneath the media hype and Hollywood hullabaloo, the books and films of the Hunger Games anthology provide an excruciatingly accurate portrait of capitalism reductio ad absurdum; its great irony is the fact it is being peddled for maximum profit in a nation apparently already too dumbed-down to recognize the real-life USian counterparts of the fictional circumstances that legitimize its revolutionary message. As an unflinching caricature of present conditions, parts of it may well be the best such USian work ever. Despite some less-than-convincing performances in the films, its content is so apt, it leaves me questioning how it got past the normal mainstream-media censorship apparatus, which controls theater, film and book-publishing media as tightly as it controls print and broadcast news. I cannot but wonder -- especially given the USian Empire's adoption of so many Nazi war criminals who brought with them their party's  unprecedented skill at manipulating public opinion -- if the widespread dissemination  of the Hunger Games material might then be in part a ruling class attempt to measure the extent to which we are already so numbed by the horrors of neoliberal existence, we have become indifferent to atrocity and injustice and are thus psychologically too paralyzed to ever again effectively rise up against it. Nor can I doubt Madison Avenue's many disciples of Josef Goebbels and Edward Bernays would eagerly agree to such an experment. And I say this in the sure knowledge any such notion will be poo-pooed by the moronic minions who suicidally refuse to recognize the bottomless moral imbecility -- the infinitely ecogenocidal Evil -- by which our doomed species is now ruled. 

LB/16-18 June 2023

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The Moronic Majority's Submissive Silence Is Tacit Approval of Our Species' Intensifying Extermination

Solstice Greetings:  May Our Mother Earth Prevail 

20230515_190611 - CopyPhoto by KD ©2023

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MY APOLOGY FOR for my long absence. As I stated in my 14 October post, Covid fatally intensified my congestive heart failure. My atrial valve's loss of function was formerly medication-stabilized at about 10 percent but has now, thanks to Covid,  skyrocketed to an 85 or 90 percent loss, which leaves me short of breath after merely walking the approximately 20 feet from one end of my apartment to the other,  and which my cardiologist tells me shortens my life expectancy to no more than two years at most, probably a lot less due to looming kidney failure ironically induced by massive doses of allegedly "life-sustaining" diuretics. Thus it took me a while to decide whether to terminate this blog with 14 October as my final word or continue posting as I voyage toward the final lesson that is death.

And what might I learn thereby? It seems to me death is either the irrevocable reduction to nonexistence my agnostic, dialectical-materialist left brain suspects proves consciousness to be no more than a meaningless electro-chemical coincidence, or, alternatively,  death is the passage to reincarnation my right brain suspects might prove consciousness to be the product of an ongoing process of electro-chemical evolution, with an unrecognized but nevertheless implicit evolutionary dynamic of inertial momentum  toward consciousness  the  defining characteristic of any and all forms of material existence.    

Obviously I've decided to continue writing as I await whatever lesson the terminable teachable moment provides, though it surely grieves my journalistic soul I won't be able to file a last report. Meanwhile I'll  post both here and on sundry comment-threads.

I've also vowed to never again indulge in the pseudo-politeness of pretending a personal optimism about our nation's  potential. To my mind, whatever positive potential  we might have possessed was rendered gravely doubtful  by the unredressed assassination of President John Fitzgerald Kennedy on 22 November 1963 and eradicated forever by the subsequent, still more outrageously unredressed murder of his brother, U.S. Senator Robert Francis Kennedy on 5 June 1968. Indeed I now argue the former date will eventually be chosen by the more competent historians -- if indeed any such exalted occupations survive our undoubtedly apocalyptic future -- as the USian Empire's equivalent of 4 September 476, the day the Western Roman Empire died.

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A BROOKLYN-BORN, Manhattanite-by-choice, gentrification-exiled son of a Boston-accented, British-Canadian-parented, first-generation father, I was, as many of you know,  condemned by familial dysfunction to spend most of my boyhood years in the South. I have also written in detail about the mass-arrest perpetrated by the University of Tennessee and Knoxville's daily newspapers in a racially motivated, existentially nazi effort to ideologically "cleanse" the campus and the city in general.  What I have not fully acknowledged in print is the magnitude of violent hatefulness I endured  in the South and Middle West during  my K-12 years and later as an adult in the Pacific Northwest,  targeted in each locale because I "talked funny" -- that is, spoke grammatically proper English with an unmistakably Northeastern accent which (in combination with my greenish-brown eyes, curly dark-brown hair,  ebony eyebrows and the equally coal-black whiskers I sprouted after puberty) -- all convinced my detractors I was a sneaky Jew trying to pass myself off as an Aryan. 

I should note here that by the year of my birth, 1940, male circumcision in the United States had lost its religious significance and become a routine medical procedure  rationalized by concerns for cleanliness and health in general. Nevertheless I -- and as I would later learn, many members of my generation -- were left with intact penises specifically because our parents feared we might otherwise be mistakenly identified as Jewish and thus exterminated once the German Nazis completed their conquest of the world, an outcome that was then rationally feared by a global majority.  Obviously I need not add that, though the German military effort failed, global capitalism is on the brink of omnipotently achieving a comparable result mostly by stealth, thereby dooming not just the traditionally targeted minorities but our entire human species.       

My memorably traumatic encounters with an existential nazism I once naively  dismissed as "Southern Hospitality" but long ago came to recognize as our one true national ethos began during my first weeks on the protectively fenced playground of an exclusive St. Johns River apartment complex, where three older kids tried to kill me by holding me upside-down and burying my head in a sandbox, an incident I describe in the third section of "The Long-Promised Eulogy for My Father."  To reiterate, thanks to my birthmother's malicious disruption of my father's career, he had been demoted from an acting corporate vice-presidency, and we had been exiled from New York City to Jacksonville, Florida,  where during the latter part of 1943 and the first half of 1944, he was  tasked with  solving various manufacturing problems  related to the war effort. Similar responsibilities transferred him to Roanoke, Virginia, where  we lived during the remainder of 1944 and into the late summer of 1945; there the hostility I had encountered in Florida as a "yankee" and suspected Jew  continued, albeit mercifully diminished by private-school discipline, at a kindergarten on Rosiland Avenue. My father's appointment to the War Production Board brought us back to  Jacksonville,  where we dwelt in a neighborhood called Lake Forest Park until 1948. My murder-minded birthmother was by then out of our lives. My father had wed the woman who had been his executive secretary in Roanoke, and in a few short months she had shown me more love than my  birthmother would express for me in all her 84 years. 

Beginning in September 1946, I attended first and second grades at Jacksonville's Norwood Elementary School, where  at recess I was repeatedly assaulted and once knocked unconscious by bigoted students, always those from my own grade, often those from a grade or two above me. But Norwood's public-school teachers, notably unlike their private- kindergarten counterparts, always refused to intervene.  (In retrospect, I've no doubt the Jacksonville teachers knew they were encouraging my foes' brutality; obviously these so-called "educators" shared their students' incipiently nazi bigotry.) My plight had become so dire, my  father, who had boxed for sport in boarding school, had begun teaching me  the rudimentary skills of pugilism, though at Norwood I was never able to successfully employ his lessons, as I was always overwhelmed by multiple assailants.

But eventually my tormentors undid themselves by the intensity of their own collective hatefulness. Their self-inflicted denouement occurred on a cloudy, uncomfortably humid summer-shirt afternoon probably halfway through the second semester of the 1948 school year.  It had started a month or so earlier when a half-dozen slightly older Norwood kids began threatening to  ambush me and beat me to death if I dared to continue getting off the school bus at its  John Paul Jones stop, which was named for the residential street that ended at  nearby  Saratoga Street, present-day Saratoga Boulevard.     

At this point I should explain that in  1948, the Lake Forest area was far less developed than it is now.  Despite its name, the school-bus stop was actually on the north side of Saratoga  Street.  Beyond that was a substantial  tract of deciduous forest, a jungle that, if I remember correctly,  stretched all the way to  the Trout River,  ending there at a beach or city park.  The site of the school-bus stop also remained in a quasi-natural state, accidentally marked by a small, seemingly mysterious  and therefore always fascinating pool of clear water. Vaguely amber-hued with what my stepmother said was proof of stagnancy, this roughly oval-shaped  miniature pond extended its perpendicular reach eight or nine feet into the forest's tropically tangled trees and underbrush. Whatever its water's  source, it was roughly three feet wide and probably half that measure deep. As I recall, we students were always perplexed by its seemingly permanent size and never-changing absence of aquatic life,  and -- as if in childish anticipation of some transformation or emergence we lacked the words to verbalize -- we were always peering into it as  we waited  for our morning transport to school. Probably 100 feet west of the pool and its bus stop,  John Paul Jones Street,  today's Paul Jones Drive,  terminated in its T-shaped intersection with Saratoga. From there it was an easy walk to my address,  a one-story, two-bedroom structure with a red-brick-veneer front; though I don't recall its number, it was on the eastern side of John Paul Jones,  I'm guessing maybe 600 or 700 yards south of the Saratoga intersection. 

The aforementioned relentless deluge of ambush threats soon poisoned my homeward bus trips with bottomless dread. There was no alternative school-bus stop within rational walking distance of  my dwelling;  I knew it would be impossible to successfully defend myself against so many simultaneous attackers, and I had found the bus drivers to be as indifferent to my safety as were the teachers. Attempting to spot ambushers in the hope of giving myself enough advance warning to flee,    I always rode on the forest-side of the afternoon bus and was always the last student to debark at the requisite stop.    Fearfully scanning the surroundings for lurking foes,  I'd scurry to John Paul Jones Street. Peering apprehensively over my shoulder, I'd then turn southward on its concrete sidewalk and start homeward at a near trot.  I'd let myself begin to relax only after I'd briskly walked  maybe 100 yards without incident. 

Despite the continuing verbal abuse,  the attacks didn't  materialize, and after more than a month of the same threats, I began suspect they were naught but bluff. But just about the time I had convinced myself I was safe,  the six wanna-be stormtroopers attacked. Earlier in the day, they'd hidden themselves in the dense underbrush beyond the little pond, and now they boiled toward me in a triumphant frenzy. I will never forget the machine-gun clatter  their shoes hammered from  the Saratoga Street pavement. The boy who had persistently proven himself my most sadistic adversary, a way-too-big-for-his-age third-grader, led their assault; he clutched to his chest a  jagged-edged chunk of  gravel-reinforced concrete so large and heavy it required  both his arms to keep it in place,  his snarls of  homicidal invective underscoring his deadly purpose.   Though the others were visibly unarmed, their savage yowling made it clear they were equally eager to participate in my demise.   Terrified, I snatched up a fallen tree-branch, realizing the best I could do was try to fend them off as they closed in,  but the leader two-handedly catapulted his missile directly into my face. The impact knocked me senseless and dropped me face-first on the sidewalk.

Schoolyard scuttlebutt eventually told me they briefly circled my fallen form, jeering, cackling at the blood pooling around my head, gleefully congratulating themselves because they thought the bloodshed proved they'd killed me. Then they fled back into the woods.

My memories of what happened next  have always been muddled, no doubt because I was moderately concussed.  I lay sprawled  on  the walkway,  bleeding profusely from a gaping wound in my right eyebrow, unconscious for what I later learned I was close to five minutes. But the only two friends I ever made at Norwood School, fellow second-graders who were typically the first kids off the bus at the John Paul Jones stop,  had witnessed the attack, and though they'd been afraid to intervene, they hastened to my aid afterward. At this distance -- 78 years --  I find  to my dismay I  am unsure of their names, an uncertainty  I sorely regret, because  I would love to be able to thank them in print.  One, a boy whose last name may have been Townsend, dashed to my family's house to fetch  my stepmother; the other, a girl whose first name may have been Bunny,  seems to have bandaged my wound with her handkerchief and thereby significantly slowed my loss of blood; I am certain she helped me to my feet after I regained consciousness and no doubt ensured I remained upright as I staggered toward my stepmother, who had run to meet me and was so shocked and horrified by my blood-drenched clothing -- this I remember clearly -- she turned white as the proverbial ghost. I don't know how I got the rest of the way home, whether I walked or my stepmother carried me. I remember hearing her telephone my father,  telling him she needed him forthwith because I'd been badly injured in a brawl.  (In those pre-dial days, extended telephone conversations were tabooed by the technology;  you lifted the receiver; waited for an operator to say "number please"; told her what that number  was; waited while she plugged in the wires that connected you to the intended recipient's phone; waited still more to hear the connection  ring; and then -- if and when someone answered -- you spoke your message as quickly as possible; you were allowed a limited amount of conversational time each month, and if you exceeded that limit, your bill skyrocketed accordingly.)   Responding immediately to my stepmother's plea,  my father sped from work to drive me to the St. Luke's Hospital emergency room. I don't remember if my two friends remained with us to await his arrival or if they departed for their own homes; the girl's house was directly across the street from ours, and the boy's was in our immediate neighborhood.  I seem to remember my stepmother accompanying us to the hospital, but I have no recollection of her there after our arrival, so I may be confusing elements of my 1945 trip to that same hospital for a tonsillectomy with the 1948  post-assault ER visit. In any case, at the time of the attack,   my stepmother was focused on caring for my infant half-sister Deborah, born the previous December, and she undoubtedly would have remained at home had she been unable to find an emergency baby-sitter. As  I said, these memories have always been fuzzy.  But I vividly recall I was nearly as frightened by the certainty of a tetanus shot and the probability of stitches as I had been by the onslaught itself, though to my enormous relief, the ER doctor concluded the wound was shallow enough for bandaging alone to prompt its healing. My father told me later the doctor chose to avoid stitches because they'd enlarge the inevitable scar.  For that I am thankful; though I will bear the scar until I am no more, it is mostly hidden beneath the hairs of my right eyebrow. 

Also, as best I recall, I never learned what punishments -- if any -- the Norwood Elementary School principal imposed on my assailants. But my father was a fairly powerful federal official then, a War Assets Administration executive equivalent to what today would be a deputy regional director.   To whatever extent he and my stepmother intervened -- and I know they met several times with the principal -- it sufficed to stop the overt bigotry for the remainder of my time in second grade. After that -- because my father had been purged from the government in retaliation for his Marxian politics -- we moved to Michigan.  Though the same nazified venom would confront me there, its expression  was far more limited, and the two times it escalated into violence, in early 1949 and autumnal 1956, I won the resultant fights, in the first instance by breaking my adversary's nose, in the second by brandishing a shotgun to discourage a pair of  burly teens who had shifted the focus of their nazi-minded violence from me to my  physically enfeebled 78-year-old  maternal grandfather.1 

Decades later, I found two Washington state cities to be veritable cesspools of such bigotry, first Bellingham (c. 1971-72) then  Seattle (c. 1972-1978). Seattle is by far the most existentially nazified realm I have ever encountered, though the business community in Bellingham was no better. Daily-newspaper managing editors in both cities mistook me for Jewish and rejected my job-applications with identical warnings:  "you don't belong here; go back where you came from."  In Seattle, quite possibly the most xenophobic, self-righteously hateful city in the United States,  that same nasty "down-with-Jew-York"  vindictiveness  was the unifying ethos of the local art scene, expressed by the malicious and probably fatal theft of a beloved dog, frequent acts of vandalism including slashed tires accompanied by explanatory notes  ("We Don't Want You Here")  and the ultimate insult of being physically attacked during a gallery-opening party at which I was one of the honorees. That fight was a draw, though only because a quartet of pacifists managed to restrain me.  By contrast, Tacoma -- strongly unionized and bolstered by a defiantly working-class ethos --  is one of the two most welcoming cities I've encountered. That's why I moved there in 1978 and in 2004 returned there in retirement. The other most-welcoming city was of course Manhattan, not the oppressively gentrified plutocracy it is today, but as I knew it in the '60s, the aesthetically revolutionary realm James Baldwin celebrated as Another Country.         

It was nevertheless during my third through eighth years was I most unforgettably schooled in the darker truth of our "sweet land of liberty," a course of instruction that -- whenever I was beyond Manhattan or urban New Jersey -- would continue until my 48th year. In that context, I cannot overlook the portents of doom  implicit in how the U.S. Government  condemned an entire shipload of Jewish children, women and men to death in the German Holocaust or  how it refused to prosecute IBM for   organizing and managing the industrialized German mass-murder apparatus;  and I cannot ignore how the national transformation that followed the assassination of President Kennedy reveals his murder to have been a coup.  I cannot un-learn the lessons that  convince me this nation's ruling ethos is (and probably always has been) a self-obsessed, morally imbecilic, terminally toxic amalgam of racial, ethnic, sexual, religious, political and socioeconomic hatreds.   I am terrified by how that  ethos is now omnipotently manifest in Donald Trump and the irrevocable Republican conversion to  Christonazi  theocracy and   Neoconfederate tyranny.  I can no longer doubt it will be this nation's doom.    

Nor will I politely pretend any further optimism about the future of our species; the "catastrophic" failure  of COP28 proves beyond dispute our impregnably bunkered, technologically omnipotent, vindictively patriarchal Masters whether capitalist or communist and (maybe) extraterrestrial have all secretly agreed to maximize terminal climate change as the  final solution in their clandestine program of  ecogenocide -- its intended extermination of the global 99 Percent already evident in the deadliness of austerity and the "herd immunity"  response to the ongoing Covid pandemic. In this context -- just as silence is sociopathic submission not only to the atrocities against our species but to the unnatural and therefore suicidal misogyny of total war against our Mother Earth -- so has empathy replaced ideology as the wellspring of revolutionary defiance. 

And I can no longer doubt what Winston Churchill said in private on the eve of the Battle of Britain -- "only a miracle can save us now" -- has become the one irrefutable truth of our entire species, the sole remaining determinant of the human condition.

________________
1By way of clarification, the 1949 incident occurred while I was attending East Grand Rapids Elementary School and living with my father, stepmother and younger half-sisters; the 1956 incident marred the year, summer '56 through summer 1957, I lived with my birthmother and her parents while starting my journalism career and working toward a potential Naval ROTC scholarship at  the University of Michigan, an effort terminated by my grandparents' decision in August of '57 to evict me from their household, which forced me to return to my father's infinitely  more intellectually productive, psychologically comfortable household in academically backward, economically oppressive, professionally restrictive Tennessee.    

 

*********

THOUGH I HAVEN'T indulged in the tragicomic self-deception of new year's resolutions since I  successfully completed eighth grade and purposefully traded the forcibly chaste academic superiority of parochial education for the academically inferior but more sexually promising realm of public high school   -- this in 1954, an age-14 act of lustfully self-inflicted intellectual damage I would later profoundly regret -- I will make exception for 2024, repeating as my one new year's resolution  my above pledge to never again soften my admittedly harsh opinions with lies of optimism. In fact, what follows is the  comment I posted on a recent Popular Resistance comment thread and afterwards realized was my initial declaration of intent, here slightly amended for clarity: 

Recognizing our Masters' ecogenocidal intent -- too bad for us their intended, often academically expressed, ever-more-obvious 90-percent reduction of the global human working-class population (aka the "99 Percent") is dismissed as right-wing "conspiracy theory" -- I long ago began (occasionally) daring to label the mechanism of our doom "terminal climate change." I do this now because "terminal" is precisely its purpose -- proven so not only by our (infinitely evil)  Masters' deception-camouflaged refusal to abate it, but by their employment of the corollary mass-extermination weapons of mandated "herd immunity," the slower-motion deaths inflicted by denial of health care and social services, and now also by their skyrocketing quest to replace us with "artificial intelligence" robots.

Nor is there any escape for those of us excluded from the impregnable bunkers of the technologically omnipotent ruling class and thus abandoned to a planet they are deliberately reducing to an open-air death camp; by their diabolical cunning, our Masters  -- whomever (or whatever) they might be -- have ensured we will never again either evolve the solidarity or acquire the technology necessary to overthrow their ever-intensifying tyranny. Nevertheless I suspect our Mother Earth will have the last word -- that our present-day Masters will find they have underestimated her much as the Weimar ruling class underestimated Hitler -- and that if any of our species survives, it will be only by reverting to the Gaian-centered ethos that sustained our pre-patriarchal ancestors through the first  approximately 194,000 years of our species's existence. 

To do so, we of course first must learn to despise Gaia's chief usurper, the ecogenocidally misogynistic, sadistically patriarchal god of the Abrahamic religions, the monstrously perverted divinity that despite all efforts at reform and/or liberalization forever lurks beneath even the most benign forms of Judaism, Christianity and Islam. The blood-drenched, torture-mangled histories of these theologies and the irresistible undertow of apocalyptic death-cult  fanaticism they exert even now prove them and the patriarchal ethos they  sustain to be our species' most elemental  Evil. The repetitive proofs of their malignancy span sat least five millennia and are therefore irrefutable. Whether implicitly or explicitly, their creeds are forever poisoned by our species' only genuinely unnatural act -- that is, the eternally irrevocable tripartite condemnation of femaleness from which patriarchy originates and from which its theologies are fabricated, propagated and sustained:

  • the hateful, clitoris-envying process exemplified by the scriptural reduction of Eve -- originally the Great Goddess, the Mother of All Being (and therefore the Mother of our Mother Earth) -- to an infinitely despised and therefore monstrous caricature of the first human woman;
  • the vindictively pornographic redefinition of femaleness -- the gender originally honored as the source of life and the wellspring of empathy -- to naught but the embodiment of  insatiable lust  exemplified by the scriptural tale of an Eve who defies a self-proclaimed Lord God of the Universe, eats of a "forbidden fruit," implicitly sates herself on  the alleged god's alleged adversary's loquaciously serpentine penis and so seduces her mate Adam to join her in alleged sinfulness;
  • the vengeful legitimization and encouragement of rape. femicide and collective punishment implicit in the scriptural tale's conclusion, the alleged god's alleged double-pronged curse in eternal retribution for "Original Sin,"  all females including the Great Goddess and our Mother Earth forever damned for their alleged lustfulness, all males forever damned for their alleged weakness thereunto, with our species' only salvation thus allegedly the unconditional embrace of the credos mandated by the paramount patriarchal propagandists, Moses, Jesus or Muhammad.   

Surely one need not hold a doctorate in psychology to recognize the allegedly "insatiable lust" for which the patriarchy relentlessly denounces females as a clinically classic projection of the murderously sadistic egotism and insatiably self-obsessed avarice that defines the ever-more-apocalyptic morally imbecility of our  Masters. Originally documented as the psychopathic fuel of serial killers, it is increasingly recognized as the ecogenocidally terminal ethos by which the .01 Percenters desecrate our planetary womb, methodically reducing it to the mechanism of our species' doom and thus to our evolutionary tomb. (A pair of informatively thought-provoking  essays on the toxins of patriarchy are here and here.) 

Quoth the Apostle Paul, a patriarchal con-man sufficiently cunning to portray himself as a paragon of honesty:

And no wonder, for even Satan disguises himself as an angel of light.  So it is no surprise if his servants, also, disguise themselves as servants of righteousness. Their end will correspond to their deeds.  (2 Corinthians 11: 14-15; English Standard Version)             

Let us therefore acknowledge the death-camp patriarchy is making of the world and recognize the Christian doxology as an ultimate summation of the Abrahamic Big Lie, that were it truthful would:        

  Curse god from whom all misery flows
  Curse him ye victims here below
  Curse him above ye suffering host
  Curse father, son and holy ghost.

*********

SEVERAL FRIENDS AND comrades have asked me how I foresee the forthcoming presidential election. The following LA Progressive  comment-thread post, slightly expanded for inclusion here, says it best:

With all due respect, Messers. Solomon and Cohen need to stop ignoring the pivotal horrors of our national history. The Bidencrats' de facto surrender to Trump and his seemingly inevitable inauguration-day declaration of the U.S. as the de facto Fourth Reich is the conclusion of a bipartisan multi-generation plutocratic coup first approved and enabled by the immunity Congress granted the nazified Bankers' Plot conspirators in 1934. The plotters immediately began enabling Germany's campaign of Aryan global conquest by forcefully promoting U.S. neutrality, and in 1938 they initiated their methodical conversion of Christian fundamentalism into the formidable sturmabteilung it has since become. When the battle of Stalingrad proved the Red Army would strike German Nazism its death-blow, they sought to guarantee the invincibility of nazism's USian variant by recruiting the evil genius of the German Nazi war criminals they embraced as comrades-at-arms c. 1944-1947. They demonstrated their omnipotence on 22 November 1963, in the aftermath permanently reducing the "Democratic" (sic) Party to the "Republican" (sic) Fifth Column. Meanwhile, with Nazi-guided, Goebbels-caliber cunning, they had already begun the stealthy reconditioning of the entire electorate to accept the Christonazi/Neoconfederate ethos that is the modern variant of the original, pre-New-Deal "Democratic" (sic) ideology and which had secretly become the core "Republican" (sic) ideology during the powerfully Ku-Klux-Klan-influenced years of the Harding/Coolidge/Hoover era. Its pivotal postwar metastases include the union-busting Taft-Hartley Act; Joseph McCarthy's witch-hunts; the declaration of Christian theocracy implicit in Eisenhower’s addition of "under God" to the Pledge of Allegiance; the subsequent betrayals implicit in LBJ’s Vietnam War, Nixon's Watergate crimes, Carter's Hyde-Amendment misogyny, Reagan's innumerable socioeconomic atrocities and their brazenly relentless continuation by Clinton and every president thereafter. Biden is merely the last comma – or coma – before the victorious Trumpite exclamation point that concludes the apocalyptic imposition of the ecogenocidal agenda originally formalized by our Masters' one true Messiah, Adolf Hitler himself. Such are the circumstances from which only a miraculous national awakening (might) yet save us.

And yes, I find it grievously astounding such an historically obvious sequence of cause and effect is yet belittled as  "conspiracy theory."  

*********

THOUGH I SEE no reason to continue reminding us of how our dire our circumstances have become, I am nevertheless linking the following three reports as both significant warnings of what is to come and accurate examples of the logical reasons for our entirely rational, inevitably depressing sense of collective hopelessness. These are  all from the World Socialist Web Site,  one exposing a Pinochet-type  trial run of the genocidal austerity by which  our Masters at the International Monetary Fund intend to further subjugate us all, the next documenting  the deliberate U.S. reduction of its younger female population's health, the last revealing how an 86-year-old (not a typo) Fed Ex employee was crushed to death in the sort of workplace "accident" that increasingly defines our economic circumstances.

                                                *********                                                

May the waxing light and dwindling darkness of the Sun's Winter-Solstice turn onto its northward path be a comfort us all. Blessed be.

LB/13-20 December 2023

                                                      -30-                                                     

 


Forbidden Thoughts on Taboo Topics: Are We Already Conquered by Interstellar Invaders? Was the Counterculture Our Mother Earth's Last Gesture of Defiance?

MY RECENT BOUT with Covid, 21 June to 9 July – this despite vaccination and three boosters – has robbed me of any expectation of longevity beyond the immediate present. My illness – exemplary both of “long Covid” and of “herd immunity” fulfilling its genocidal intent – has radically worsened my (hitherto-stable) congestive heart failure; the doubled and quadrupled medications so necessitated have set me on an inescapable path to kidney failure and agonizingly reactivated my decades-dormant esophageal re-flux problems. Long Covid has also permanently inflamed my osteoarthritis severely enough I am now so painfully crippled, I am often effectively bedridden; and three months after the fact, it is obvious the virus has slain forever my senses of taste and smell. As many of you know, I am 83 years old; while my doctors refuse to estimate how much longer I might live, there is now no question my departure is looming. At the beginning of the pandemic, three oracles, I Ching, runes and tarot, predicted Covid would kill me, and though eventually I came to believe I had misread their messages, now I know I did not. These days when I dream, it is almost always either of conversations with dead people, usually my father, or of activities in which I am companioned by long-dead favorite dogs. Thus when I fall asleep, I am never sure I will awaken. But as dreadful as all this may sound, it is also a liberation, for now I am free to lift my social-fingers to the arsonist(s) who destroyed my life’s work and write without any concern my words will precipitate my disappearance or the more commonplace removal by alleged accident or suicide.

=========

HERE THEN, AS a prelude to all that follows, is a list of eight present-day horrors that views their known-to-be-deadly effects as cleverly disguised expressions of intent:

Covid-19 – a lethal virus most likely engineered for biological warfare. Regardless of the pandemic's origin, the fact it mutates too rapidly to be controlled by immunization makes “herd immunity” a clever euphemism for deliberately inflicted genocide. Statistically, most victims are members of the working class, aka the 99.9 Percent. Pivotal question: who (or what) is served by the resultant extermination of millions of humans?

Climate change – a modern apocalypse inflicted on our species and planet by patriarchal ignorance and now deliberately, continuously worsened, allegedly by political paralysis imposed by capitalist greed and associated bribery, but in terrifying truth by our masters’ definitively ecogenocidal choices. Pivotal questions: why are the owners of this planet destroying its ability to support life as we know it? Who (or what) benefits from Earth’s reduction to lifeless twinship with forever-barren Mars?

Abandonment of infrastructure – a modern crisis that seems to have begun in the USian Empire but has since metastasized throughout the globe. Typically dismissed as the unavoidable consequence of “neoliberal austerity,” it is the cause of soaring fatalities due to train wrecks, structural collapses and other such disasters. Pivotal question: why are the world’s governments –  the executive agencies that serve the de facto owners of these properties (i.e., the ruling class) – abandoning their investments? Hint: why are factories abandoned and left to rot?

Unprecedented escalation of warmongering – the risk of our species’ extinction by chemical, biological and thermonuclear warfare is at an all-time high; indeed, its terrifying magnitude may be taken as the ultimate declaration the global ruling class now considers itself well-enough bunkered to survive whatever ecogenocidal horrors it inflicts on the rest of us. Pivotal questions: why is this happening now? Apart from the smirkingly bunkered aristocracy, who (or what) benefits from such an ecogenocidal event? And how do the aristocrats benefit if there are no (enslaved) humans to serve them?

Replacement of humans with robots and artificial intelligence – the skyrocketing replacement of workers with machines is creating an ever-expanding “surplus” of unemployed workers who have no real possibility of ever again finding living-wage jobs. Pivotal question: why do our masters so despise humans they are literally sentencing millions of us to death by poverty, disease, homelessness and starvation?

De-educating the working class – aka “dumbing down” the citizenry. Astronomer Carl Sagan defines the problem, and Psychiatrist Niall McLaren analyzes its deliberately toxic economics. Pivotal questions: why do our masters rob us of the intellectual tools we need to thrive as humans? What do they gain from such atrocities?

Destruction of social services – aka “austerity,” in truth slow-motion genocide targeting women and the neediest members of the 99.9 Percent. Pivotal questions: who (or what) benefits from this policy? How is genocide on such scale beneficial to our masters?

Prohibition (or destruction) of health care as a human right – another process begun by USian malevolence in this instance by its relentless insistence health care remain a privilege of wealth – but now, disguised as “austerity,”  metastasizing rapidly throughout Europe and the rest of the world. (The foregoing data is somewhat dated, though the deadly trends obviously continue both in the U.S. and Europe.) Pivotal question: who (or what) benefits from this growing tsunami of sickness and death?

Ultimate question: what do all these atrocities tell us? What singular purpose does the ruling-class-induced atrocity of global warming – that is, ecogenocidal climate change – have in common with the (other) ecogenocidal atrocities of ruling-class-induced austerity? What terrible truth does that purpose suggest?

Note that universal education and health care are investments in our species’ future, and that their methodical reduction – like the abandonment of infrastructure – is a message from our masters they believe we no longer have a future worthy of investment.

What we see in the above – though it is a truth too terrifyingly painful for most of us to acknowledge (one therefore rendered “plausibly deniable” by the boiled-frog pace of our terminal subjugation) – are eight aspects of a total war against our species and against our Mother Earth’s ability to support human life, the latter possibly aimed at reducing her to irremediably barren twinhood with Mars.

*****

I SHOULD PREFACE this next section by stressing I have no prior history as a devotee of the unidentified-flying-object cult. Moreover I remain profoundly antagonistic to the notion all of our species’ ancient achievements were fostered by extraterrestrial visitations, which I regard as an especially devious means of vilifying the matrifocal, probably matriarchal potlach-communism that characterized our collective history until the decidedly curious, unquestionably violent imposition of patriarchy some six-or-seven-thousand years ago. Though I have heard many credible UFO stories, especially during my years in the working press, I always ranked them among the many seemingly inexplicable anomalies of modern life, and never until now felt any compulsion to write about UFOs or even give them much more than momentary thought.

Also there’s the fact that in all the time outdoors (often in the back country and some of it at sea) that characterized the best of my 83 years, I myself witnessed only one genuinely UFO-ish phenomenon, this in 1959, as best I recall in May or June, just past sunset while sitting outside with friends quietly chatting as we routinely awaited the scattered pinpoints of gracefully floating green and amber light that are the opening movements of suburban  Knoxville’s  breathtakingly exquisite seasonal choreography of fireflies. Instead there was suddenly a bright orange fireball maybe a hand-span above the north-northeast horizon; it was astonishingly big, about a quarter the size of the full moon at its smallest mid-heaven zenith; it glided eastward for maybe 10 degrees almost parallel to the surface of the earth, wobbled violently, showered sparks, descended in a shallow curve, briefly ascended, again wobbled and spewed sparks, then plunged out-of-sight behind the silhouetted peaks of the Great Smokies. It left us startled and muttering exclamations. I immediately telephoned a friend, WKGN News Director Tom Combs, and reported what we had seen. He said he’d already received a half-dozen calls about it. He told me the next day it had been witnessed by at least a hundred persons; that because of its erratic flight, some had feared it was a crashing airplane. All a University of Tennessee astronomer would tell Combs – note the wording – is “we can say it was a meteorite,” and like so many other incidents of its kind, it was soon consigned to official oblivion. But it stuck in my mind because even then I had sufficient background in astronomy to know meteorites do not momentarily gain altitude in their descent from outer space.

Now, given the combination of newly acknowledged UFO incidents with the undeniably apocalyptic perpetuation of the eight atrocities I described above, I am compelled to suspect it is probable we’ve already been conquered by interstellar predators – and that the global ruling class, capitalist and communist alike, is merely functioning as the invaders’ own obscenely recompensed SS-Totenkopfverbände, its present task the reduction of our world to a planet-sized Auschwitz.

Indeed, per Occam’s Razor, this is the only hypothesis that explains all of today’s afflictions – most especially the self-imposed pseudo-paralysis by which the global ruling class, capitalist and communist alike, relentlessly attempts to excuse its ever-more-apocalyptic refusal to reduce the causative abuses, much less its refusal to ameliorate their disastrous results. Mind you, I’m not saying extraterrestrial conquest is the final, definitive truth of our species’ increasingly hopeless present-day circumstances. But the unprecedented solidarity of malevolent cunning the global ruling class exhibits in the success of its universal promotion of the originally USian ethos of self-obsessed moral imbecility and in the veritable omnipotence demonstrated by its diabolical skill at co-optation and/or suppression of any and all forms of organized humanitarianism most assuredly suggest an equal capability for beneficence -- the glaring absence of which is therefore both infinitely damning and all the more suggestive of purposeful choice.

There is also the fact the present-day plague of atrocities is entirely the function of patriarchy and is therefore arguably the final revelation of  its unspoken purpose. Note too how the imposition of patriarchy is biblically attributed to talking snakes, divine apparitions, flaming wheels in the sky and loquacious brush-fires underscored by the (thermonuclear?) destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah. With its misogynistic war against our Mother Earth, against all femaleness and implicitly therefore against all being, patriarchy is increasingly recognized as a death cult. Dialectic-materialist efforts to define patriarchy as a logical outgrowth of the agricultural revolution not withstanding, it is not unthinkable to suppose it to be a  long-term interstellar expression of the same strategic scheming evident in smallpox-infected blankets.

At the very least, the body of evidence demands the probability of our terminal victimization by extraterrestrial conquerors ought to be given serious consideration and thorough investigation.

Investigated or not, the likelihood we are already the powerless subjects of some conquering alien species becomes obvious when we examine the undeniably anti-human, sometimes undeniably genocidal or ecogenocidal consequences of the afflictions in question. Though it is clear there is no longer any rational hope we might yet save ourselves, at least we would then be able to correctly identify our executioners and thus yet retain some minimal authority over the courses of our individual lives.  

In this context, let us now consider the likelihood the burgeoning official acknowledgment of unknown aerial and oceanic phenomenon is – in much the same way European acknowledgment of Nazi German technological superiority was the prelude to psychological acceptance of defeat, enslavement and extermination – the precursor to admission we are a conquered species. Note how we are being methodically robbed of all our former freedoms – and more importantly of even any expectation of freedom – literally everywhere on the planet. It is thus at least arguable our minds are being conditioned for enslavement. Is it then mere coincidence that, after denying the reality of UFOs and their underwater counterparts for at least 80 years often ridiculing and even slandering as mentally ill anyone who dared admit encountering UFOs   the world’s governments are now finally acknowledging such things are real? Or that the propaganda apparatus which serves the global ruling class now deluges us with documentaries that claim humans are routinely kidnapped and used as lab rats by extraterrestrials?

Typical of the aliens-as-conquerors documentaries is “Alien Endgame,” an hour and 25-minute film available on Max that claims a “massive military cover-up” of the fact “our very existence is at risk.” It includes testimony about incidents in which UFOS rendered nuclear-armed intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs) unlaunchable, notes that UFOs operate with speed and maneuverability far beyond human capabilities, that they can become invisible and are sometimes undetectable by radar. The film also describes naval encounters with unidentified submerged objects that demonstrate the same seemingly inexplicable characteristics. “If the aliens decide to attack,” the film concludes, “we don’t stand a chance.”

Significantly, the aliens’ oberführers – the terrifying medical-experiment sadism associated with their kidnappings prompts me to describe them with the terminology of nazism – are often said to look like bipeds descended from giant preying mantises. This brings to mind a 1974 or 1975 comment by a prominent astrophysicist that only exoskeletal creatures can survive the gravitational forces generated by right-angle turns at mach 10 and other such astounding maneuvers even then attributed to UFOs. I’m sorry I don’t remember the astrophysicist’s name, but I do remember his comment generated a lively, mostly apprehensive discussion midway through the astronomy course I was then taking as an overage undergraduate. Now, knowing how insect biology is a prime inspiration in robotics and artificial intelligence, I find the notion of insectoid conquerors horrifying beyond words. Is our obviously methodical reduction to moral imbecility the beginning of our replacement by dependably emotionless machines? And let us not forget that female mantises, like female spiders, eat their mates, nor that a large enough plague of locusts – or greedy patriarchs – could leave our Earth as barren as present-day Mars. Are we humans being bred to be our masters' Soylent Green? Might irremediably desolate Mars exemplify the ecogenocidal ruin Earth too is now fated to become?

Even so, a few documentaries present the invaders as benign. “Encounters,” a four-episode program on Netflix, describes the extraterrestrials as claiming “the environment is our first priority,” warning us our species is “actually making harm on the world,” that “technology is not going to do humans any good” and urging us to care for nature. It also quotes Japanese sources who describe the aliens as “kind and comforting,” which echo many First Nations accounts of encounters with beneficent “Star People.”

The notion of benevolent and malevolent extraterrestrials and their implicit competition for human allegiance is obviously the newest variant of the ancient traditions, common to all cultures, of cosmic warfare between the forces of good and evil. From any such perspective of universal dualism, the pivotal question becomes the one poised by the coal miners’ anthem, “Which Side Are You On?” But the oft-demonstrated omnipotence of the ruling class – specifically its uncanny genius at deception and co-optation (which history shows us is at least as old as patriarchy itself) – makes any such discernment impossible. Note the paradox of Christianity: is it, as the late and oft-persecuted Jesuit Fr. William Bischel believed and practiced, a benevolently revolutionary credo of peace, humanitarian love, social liberation and the harmonious healing of Nature? Or is its equally documented function as the credo of ecogenocidal hatred embraced by capitalists, Trumpists, prosperity-gospel fanatics, Ku Klux Klaners, Nazis, witch-burners and other misogynistic moral imbeciles the true expression of its essence? The same functional schizophrenia – and thus the same (unanswerable) question – seemingly applies to every religious or political movement our species has generated. Nor is it mooted by the growing suspicion many of our most iconic figures – Moses, the Buddha, Jesus, Muhammad, Our Lady of Fatima – may have themselves been extraterrestrials. Quoth St. Paul (2 Corinthians 11:14, New International Version): “Satan himself masquerades as an angel of light.” And despite its apparent absurdity, let us not overlook the claim Hitler's Nazis and now their USian successors – achieved power as the willing puppets of extraterrestrial masters.

=========

MY ARSON-DESTROYED  and thus forever lost “Glimpses of a Pale Dancer” hypothesized via approximately one hundred photographs and some  one-hundred-fifty-thousand words of extensively footnoted text that the 1960s Counterculture was simultaneously the resurrection of the Great Goddess,  our species first and oldest deity, and – as demonstrated by the aesthetic solidarity that underlay the dissonance of its politics – the first wave of a global revolution against patriarchy. Another writer's parallel work, The Return of the Goddess (Edward C. Whitmont, Crossroad Publishing: 1984), offered a kindred but less obviously revolutionary  hypothesis based on Jungian psycho-analytic analysis of dreams. But as proven by the flames that burned "Dancer" like a witch slain in obvious retaliation for her alleged heresies,  my bluntly expressed conclusions which noted in passing the Goddess-worship origins of Marxism’s red star and hammer-and-sickle symbols were obviously tabooed as too dangerous for public consumption. "Dancer"  was thus destroyed just as it seemingly approached mainstream publication. Nor is it insignificant its would-have-been editor, the late Cicely Nichols, regarded "Dancer" as potentially one of the "most influential books of the 20th Century";  indeed the arsonist(s) lit the fire at the very moment Cicely and I began the meeting intended to finalize our working agreement.     

“Dancer” defined  the '60s Counterculture in its broadest sense; it sidestepped the obvious self-indulgence of the white petite-bourgeois faddists who later proved their proto-nazi moral imbecility by their votes for Ronald Reagan; it focused specifically on the aesthetic solidarity of feminism, environmentalism and the back-to-the-land movement as demonstrated by its music, visual art, literature and science, including the folk renaissance, the Whole Earth Catalog and – perhaps most importantly – the Gaia Hypothesis, which in essence is the modern scientific restatement of the inconceivably ancient pagan core-belief our Mother Earth the Great Goddess who was our species' first and longest-lasting deity is a living being, conscious, self-regulating and thus at least arguably invocable.

What “Dancer” omitted – this in the admittedly selfish interest of preserving my journalistic credibility – was a pair of decidedly curious events that seemed to confirm not just the project's  relevance and validity but its cosmic/karmic necessity. These incidents there were also a half-dozen lesser events easily dismissable as coincidence are the childhood experience I describe in the essay “Abutments” (note the element of missing time, which today might be taken as indicative of a UFO encounter), and  the brief but profoundly moving vision I experienced during an absolutely intoxicant-free moment of reflection in 1970: this occurred in the Cascade foothills beneath the August full moon of 1970, almost exactly 18 years after the 1952 incident. As I described in an earlier essay:

I had walked alone and lonely into the Innis Creek water meadow, an unkempt span of lowland maybe thirty yards wide that was now dry but was annually drenched by the creek's vernal floods. It was at least four times that distance beyond the corn fields, buildings and gardens of the Wickersham, Washington agricultural commune where I was then a long-term guest who contentedly paid my way by contributing a full share of physical effort to the requisite daily labor, and now I stood amidst Nature's shadowy harbingers of early Autumn: blown thistles, bright clumps of pearly everlasting, iridescent cobwebs bejeweled with dew. The communards were meeting in their main building but were ensnared in psychodrama intensified by the unresolvable ideological disputes that invariably arise from caste differences, and I had left the session in disillusioned bitterness and disgust. Seeking to restore my inner peace, I sprawled face-upward on the weedy ground and gazed at the zenith-high improbably brilliant moon as if it were some mandala of last resort.

Then to my astonishment there was a decidedly strange kind of jolt, as if albeit eerily without the physical reality   I had heard and felt some unseen door burst open, and all in the same breathtaking instant the moon spiraled into a rainbow that expanded to fill the entire sky, contracted to a vortex of flowing bands of color, plunged tornado-like to earth and shaped a magnificently ageless woman pale and translucent as mist yet undeniably real. She was majestically naked but loosely wrapped in the lunar blonde infinity of her own hair; she smiled, reached out her hands as if to embrace me and then like some impossibly magical dancer swirled her endless mane into rainbow hues that swept her aloft, dissolving herself back into rivers of color that expanded once more from horizon to horizon and shrank into the moon again – a millisecond's vision, a mere glimpse so brief and so ephemeral I could scarcely believe I had seen it and yet so vivid it could not be denied.  But now as if nothing at all had occurred there was only the commonplace moon again, the midnight sky and its diamond constellations, the fragrant crush of wild chamomile beneath my head, the vast nocturnal stillness of Pacific Northwest woods so unlike the firefly-bright insect-rowdiness of the fields and forests in which I'd spent the summers of my boyhood and adolescence.  When the night's chill finally urged me to my feet, I remember there were faint tendrils of fog rising from the creek, and for a moment, just once, it seemed I heard the clear cold water chuckle.

There is also the matter of the carefully disguised remnants of pagan liturgy that scholars including Olaf Nygard and Robert Graves argued are preserved in much of traditional folk music, most assuredly including that which was re-popularized by the folk-music renaissance that immediately preceded and obviously helped mother the advent of the Counterculture.

Though it may seem something of an aside, the mechanics of such disguises – Graves calls it “riddling” – are obscure enough to exemplify here. The following is from an explanatory note I recently sent a dear friend:

All true pagans should know how to decode the liturgy of the Goddess that is hidden in so many traditional ballads, disguised to protect singers and celebrants from being burnt at the stake as witches.

Firstly we should remember most of these stories began as seasonal celebrations, the feasts that mark the turns of the year, specifically the Winter Solstice (Yule, Midwinter’s Day); 1 February (Imbolc or the feast of the Goddess as Brigit, originally the first day of spring); the Vernal Equinox (Ostara); 1 May (Beltane, originally the first day of summer); the Summer Solstice (Litha or Midsummer’s Day); 1 August (Lughnassadh or Bron Trograne, originally the first day of autumn); the Autumnal Equinox (Mabon); and Hallowe’en or Samhain (the night the year dies, originally the first day of winter).

Secondly we should remember the two primary seasons, winter and summer, were anciently personified as the domains of male twins, the king/god of summer and the king/god of winter, perpetual rivals for the love of the Goddess, their mother and the “mother of all being,” personification of earth and cosmos. The Summer King died on the Summer Solstice, slain by his winter twin; the ballad John Barleycorn describes his fate. But he was reborn on the Winter Solstice. Eventually this anthropomorphization became a single god – aka “the dying god” and “the once-and-future king” representing the entire year, hence Samhain as “the night the year dies” and Midwinter’s Day as his rebirth. Hence too the Christianization of this ancient story, with Jesus as the year god and Satan as his rival. (Note that in the Celtic Church, violently suppressed by the Roman Papacy, Jesus was the newest incarnation of the dying god, while his mother – “Mary mother of god” – was the newest incarnation of the Goddess.)

The following is a ballad entitled Willy o’ Winsbury as sung by Pentangle’s Jacqui McShee, with my apology for the extremely infuriating fact TypePad does not allow the normal, line-by-line formatting of poetry:

The king had been a prisoner/ And a prisoner long in Spain/ And Willy of the Winsbury/ Has lain long with his daughter at home

From earthly perspective in the northern hemisphere, the sun turns south at Summer Solstice, then turns north again at Winter Solstice. Spain is to the south of Scotland, the source of this ballad. In other words, the sun is again traveling northward. According to The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition,  “Willie” is not just a foreshortened version of William the name means strong-willed protector but is also an archaic euphemism for penis.

"What ails you, what ails you, my daughter Janet?/ Why you look so pale and wan?/  Oh, have you had any sore sickness/ Or yet been sleeping with a man?"

Janet means “gift of god”; it is the time of Ostara; the land is pregnant with spring,

"I have not had any sore sickness/ Nor yet been sleeping with a man/ It is for you, my father dear/ For biding so long in Spain"

"Cast off, cast off your berry-brown gown/ You stand naked upon the stone/ That I may know you by your shape/ If you be a maiden or none"

Such songs as these were originally danced amidst the standing stones that often encircled stone altars. “Berry-brown gown” symbolizes our Mother Earth's bare brown winter soil and its winter cloak of dead brown leaves.

And she cast off her berry-brown gown/ She stood naked upon the stone/ Her apron was low and her haunches were round/ Her face was pale and wan

"Oh, was it with a lord or a duke or a knight/ Or a man of birth and fame? Or was it with one of my serving men/ That's lately come out of Spain?"

"No, it wasn't with a lord or a duke or a knight/ Nor a man of birth and fame/ But it was with Willy of Winsbury/ I could bide no longer alone"

And the king has called on his merry men all/ By thirty and by three/ Says, "Fetch me this Willy of Winsbury/ For hanged he shall be"

Significant math here: 30 by 3 yields a digital root of nine, as in “the nine-fold Muse.” another name of the Goddess. And the Vernal Equinox is three months – approximately 90 days – after the sun turns north at Winter Solstice.

But when he came the king before/ He was clad all in the red silk/ His hair was like the strands of gold/ His skin was as white as the milk

"And it is no wonder," said the king/ "That my daughter's love you did win/ For if I was a woman as I am a man/ My bedfellow you would have been

And will you marry my daughter Janet/ By the truth of your right hand?/ Oh, will you marry my daughter Janet?/ I'll make you the lord of my land"

"Oh yes, I will marry your daughter Janet/ By the truth of my right hand/ Oh yes, I will marry your daughter Janet/ But I'll not be the lord of your land"

In other words, he’ll not be the lord of winter.

And he's mounted her on a milk-white steed/ And himself on a dapple gray/ He has made her the lady of as much land/ As she shall ride in a long summer's day

Thus the "long summer's day" proclaims the solar supremacy of Janet, and the rule of the Goddess as a cosmic deity rather than merely the Earth Mother is again affirmed, albeit in a manner that conceals her ritual invocation from the Christians, thereby protecting the pagans from the unimaginable agony of death at the stake.

Another key fact, one that “Dancer” repeatedly implied but carefully avoided stating outright, is  the hitherto-unacknowledged extent to which the folk-music renaissance was obviously among the primary cultural influences that psychologically mothered both second-wave feminism and the Counterculture in general.

The related conclusion I dared not even suggest is that what might be termed “Goddess-magic” remained powerful even in its most thoroughly disguised forms. Magical or not, the archetypal woman of the traditional ballad – examples here, here and here – is the diametrical opposite of the oppressive archetypes of empty-headed, athletic-hero-dependent prom queens and submissive housewives that USian females of the 1950s and postwar ‘40s were relentlessly conditioned to believe were their gender’s only acceptable norms. And we should never overlook the fact the private-schooled, Ivy-League-graduate aristocrats who serve the ruling class as its intelligence analysts were unquestionably well-educated enough to recognize the spontaneous and often unwitting resurrection of the Goddess by an entire generation as a burgeoning threat to patriarchy – no doubt the underlying reason for Operation CHAOS (caps as in original). If I could see it all with nothing more than journalistic curiosity shaped by a solidly proletarian education bolstered by supplemental reading, there's no doubt an aristocracy carefully spoon-fed a vastly superior quality and depth of learning could do likewise.

Not surprisingly, the girls and women of allegedly extra-terrestrially inspired Nazi Germany were subjected to misogynistic conditioning notably similar to that which was (temporarily) overthrown here in USia by feminists and elsewhere on the planet by Marxians and democratic socialists.

But that brain-warping oppressiveness is now being everywhere restored with such vengeful permanence it is obvious the Goddess-centered anti-patriarchal revolution I joyfully predicted in "Dancer" will never be allowed. Here in USia, it was in fact slain in its infancy by the government and its nazi-minded auxiliaries. And now, a half-century later, every humanitarian effort our species ever attempted anywhere on the planet is methodically targeted for suppression. 

Thus it should surprise no one the Christonazis and their Neoconfederate allies are re-imposing maximized misogyny as a key part of their MAGA scheme. Their overseas allies are doing likewise in their own domains. Prohibiting abortion, banning birth control and formal persecution of alleged violators are just the opening atrocities of USian encouragement in  what amounts to a globally expanding pogrom against women.  

Nor have the Counterculture’s once-promisingly beneficent legacies remained unbesmirched by the aforementioned good/evil dichotomy that sooner or later seems to contaminate all mass movements with venomously contradictory identities which ultimately kill or at least neutralize a movement simply because they are too impossibly confusing for most humans to resolve. Once-presumably species-saving environmentalism has thus evolved an academic sub-cult that claims our only salvation is genocide, specifically the extermination – probably by bio-weaponry – of 90 percent of the human population, a thoroughly documented conviction that nevertheless remains unspeakable outside the hard right, never mind it has simmered in USian environmental colleges at least since the early ‘80s. Feminism has meanwhile fallen prey to what might be termed the Valerie Solanas virus, to which I no doubt over-react because – just as Solanas would have murdered Andy Warhol and an associate – so would my birthmother have slain my father and me.

Both women were well educated and academically accomplished; in 1933 or ‘34 – I’ve forgotten which – my birthmother was one of the first three women to graduate from Michigan State with a BA degree in urban planning and landscape architecture. But while Solanas chose a day of no particular cosmic significance for her crimes – it was 3 June 1963 – my birthmother selected the Summer Solstice Eve of 1945 for her premeditated effort at post-partum abortion and her spontaneous attempt to murder my father when he intervened to save my life. The best evidence indicates she planned my slaying to pay the Satanic debt she believed she had acquired by bargaining with a demon to ensure the pregnancy by which she ensnared my father in marriage.

Alleged supernatural elements aside, my birthmother’s thwarted but always potentially murderous anti-male hatred clearly mirrors the ideology of the Valerie Solanas faction of feminists which my birthmother would surely have publicly embraced had she been less fanatical in her vindictively hypocritical struggle to preserve her lifelong lies of psychological normalcy and socioeconomic superiority. A recognizably similar constancy of broad-spectrum hatred fuels the wanna-be mega-holocaust deadliness of the salvation-by-genocide cult of environmentalists and the mass murders that are becoming part of everyday human life. Its apocalyptic intensity, of a magnitude seemingly without peer in our species’ experience, parallels the cannibalistic behavior of over-stressed and underfed lab rats. I believe it is a symptom of the global pandemic of self-obsessed moral imbecility that increasingly infects our entire species, the same affliction that enables the entire global ruling class – literally every .01 Percenter no matter whether capitalist or socialist – to justify waging their war of ecogenocidal extermination against our entire species. I've no doubt its truth is to be found in how imperialism perpetuates the morally imbecilic dynamics of patriarchy: just as some tribal chieftains and their modern-day quisling counterparts guaranteed their own survival by serving as their conquerors’ slavemasters, so might our masters seek to perpetuate their survival by functioning as vassals of extraterrestrial insectoid or reptilian masters, thus volunteering as the commanders, overseers, executioners and guards of slave-plantation/death-camp earth.

When I consider the impending loss of all human achievement atop the nullification of untold millennia of evolutionary advancement, I am left with a grief so bottomless no language can describe it. Nor can any quantity of tears relieve it. The Goddess herself that is, our Mother Earth is obviously dying;  the atrocities and disasters that increasingly beset us are undeniably both her proclamations of our irreversibly  looming extinction and as she twitches and spasms like any other victim of rape and murder her own increasingly violent agonies of death.  

LB/25 September-13 October 2023

-30-

 


Doorways: Nine Takes on How 'They' Killed the Back-to-the-Land Movement (a Memoire)

(That estimated reading time is for the full 12,689 words; the longest of these nine pieces, Part VIII,  is 2,138 words; the shortest, Part I, is 231 words. The entire text is sectionalized to be read like a book, a part or two at a time.  )

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The second of two ruined A-frame dwellings at the wildly overgrown site of a wrecked and long-abandoned Back-to-the-Land commune I discovered while grouse hunting with my dog LeeRoy during a fall afternoon in 1992. The violence done to the communal structures before their abandonment and the extent to which they had already been reclaimed by nature suggest they were destroyed during the Vigilante War two decades earlier. Note the yellow Top can, inverted, as if in a final metaphor of the violence that sent so many of the rural Counterculture's unarmed pacifists fleeing back to the cities they had sought to escape. (Top was the era's universal choice for the most inexpensive tobacco and best dual-purpose rolling papers.) The density of the surrounding underbrush, nearly impenetrable even after it was stripped of foliage by frost, suggested no other human had visited the place since it was vacated.  Scroll to Part IX for more pictures of the ruins and the vaguely eerie story of how LeeRoy seemed to lead me to them.  (Photograph by Loren Bliss copyright 2023.)  

*****

Prelude: a Premature Expostulation

(I wrote the following in 2010 and have since revised it only with minor editing for clarity.)

SORRY I DROPPED out of sight: first there was the numbing despair of recognizing Obama truly is Barack the Betrayer, then there was an unforeseen frenzy including two all-nighters to meet a 24 May deadline, finally the four-day recovery mandated by old age.

The deadline problem was my fault, a classic example of the folly of assumption: Fairhaven College – of which I'm involuntarily a 1976 alumnus (long story for another time) – requested five submissions for a special edition of its lit mag to celebrate the school's 40th anniversary.

Without much thought I planned to send five photographs – the social documentary stuff I know I do well enough for inclusion in such a self-consciously artistic medium. Nobody of influence in this ever-more submissively fascist nation – least of all the academic bourgeoisie – gives a damn about the poor anymore, but if nothing else such work goads the local Ansel Adams zealots to heights of fury by its fuck-you retort to their morally imbecilic exclusion of the human condition from their Zone System cult of usable light.

But then when I queried the lit mag's editor for submission guidelines (jpeg vs. tif, pixel count etc.), I was told to my horror the magazine no longer has the capabilities to print photography at all – that it was text or nothing. 

This created  two immediate sets of problems: technical and psychological.

Though I have no doubts about my abilities as a visual artist – I was a painter before I was a photographer and have a strong (albeit pre-computer) design and graphics background too, and though my photographic ability was repeatedly confirmed by gallery shows and publication credits – I have always felt myself something of an impostor as a writer.  Never mind three-quarters of my lifetime income is from writing and editing: photography is my passion -- "choreography of light sculpted in alchemical silver" – while writing is never more than an intellectual exercise, personally compelling, yes, often even an obsession, but always tainted at its core by the fact I'm dyslexic. Just as photography for me is often a wild and Zenlike sled-ride on the Tao, at its very best a face-to-face encounter with the Muse, writing -- because of its implicit battle against dyslexia -- is in large measure a war against myself. 

As a result the whole “lit mag” concept with its oppressive hierarchy of values – “fine” art versus “commercial” art; “literary excellence” versus “mere journalism” – became again as hugely intimidating as it had been in my long-ago undergraduate years.

Plus atop this was as miserable a technological chore as I have ever experienced: the struggle to transform hyperlinks into footnotes without locking the result into formats unsuitable for transmission as manuscript: the necessary trial-and-error (which never really yielded the results I wanted) combining with other computer problems to burn up at least 60 of the approximately 80 hours eaten by this project.

The resultant rage of frustration lingers yet as elevated blood pressure, and once again I am reminded why the ruling class was so cottonmouth-quick to impose computers on journalism: computers reduced the intricate crafts of typographers, lithographers and stereotypers to the mind-numbing repetitiveness of minimum-wage clerical tasks, flung thousands of workers into permanent joblessness and afflicted us – editors, reporters and photographers – with oppressive doses of the insurance-office tedium we'd gone into journalism to avoid.

This was probably the greatest and most oppressive forcible workload increase in U.S. employment history – you either accepted it or got fired – and it was imposed without a penny's raise in editorial pay: its result not just the reduction of journalism to its present-day meaninglessness but a genuinely obscene boost in profits to the pigs who own the papers.

Here of course is the reason I so utterly despise computers and the clerical duties they inflict on writers – I am not a stenographer or clerk-typist nor do I have even a trace of the mandatory occupational submissiveness – and the fact I have to spend at least two hours wrestling with word-processing minutiae for every one hour of genuinely productive work never ceases to infuriate me. Nor is this 2:1 ratio even slightly exaggerated: I typically spend four to six hours writing my blog essays, then twice that time fighting the technology to post via my server: no doubt my neighbors have radically improved their vocabularies of vulgarity merely by listening to me bellow at my computer monitor.

So went most of last week, the entire weekend and all of this week through Tuesday morning.

But now I'm finally finished: four excerpts from Outside Agitator's Notebook revised into the lit-mag format plus something entitled “Doorways,” a condensation of experiences from several places into a text that evolved from a long piece of journalism, the result exhibited here if only to prove that even at age 70 one can encounter new dimensions of the creative process – or perhaps of new dementia to display one's utter foolishness – a possibility I cannot ever dismiss because I know as surely as nightfall that once we get into the lit-realm I am as hopelessly lost as London's doomed protagonist in “To Build a Fire.”

*****

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My first recognition of the Back-to-the-Land Movement and its role in the resurrection of the Goddess was of course visual rather than textual. I made this sandwich in 1968 or 1969, I suspect the latter, though I no longer remember which; it was to have been one of the key illustrations in "Dancer" and escaped the fire only because it was with me in my portfolio in Manhattan. (Photo by Loren Bliss ©1969, 2923)

*****

I. A Door Slammed in My Face

THE BEGINNING OF  “Doorways” in its submitted lit-mag variant is essential for context, and so I have included it here. But it and its companion submissions were never so much as acknowledged by Fairhaven College; they were neither published nor returned, and thus were rejected and apparently destroyed without notice or explanation.

Abandoned farms always seem like cries of sadness arising from the chaos of their overgrown landscapes, most no doubt harboring ghosts and nearly all inviting photographic exploration, but none I ever visited were more haunted by palpable despair than the remnants of rural communes that had been emptied in such terror the communards had forsaken all their possessions – undeniable testimony to the relentless malevolence of the Christian vigilantes who played such a huge but plausibly deniable and therefore subsequently concealed part in the war against the Counterculture.

Most of those monuments to ruling class savagery are gone now, mercifully reclaimed by nature or buried as if in shame beneath sprawling development, but for maybe a decade after the suppression of the Back to the Land Movement, which was mostly dead by 1973 (though a few die-hard communes would linger into the very early '80s), I'd occasionally find such places in the back country and whenever possible I'd not only photograph them but speak my impressions into a tape recorder as I worked.

*****

II. Breaking It Down

(Note: I slightly revised everything beyond this point in 2012, and now in 2023 I have expanded it well beyond its original pre-lit-mag form.)

AS THE NOW-forever-lost “Glimpses of a Pale Dancer” took on its final form c. 1978-1982, the Back-to-the-Land material I had thus far collected became the core of its last chapter. Its sources included my research notes, photographs and tape-recorded  impressions of the histories of five abandoned rural communes in Western Washington and similar material about urban or suburban communes in locales as far removed from one another as Seattle and Madison, N.J. It was supplemented by notes on others' descriptions of at least a half-dozen more such endeavors including the story of how a  commune in the Cascade Mountain back-country preserved itself against repeated vigilante attacks in a night-long firefight that ended with the vigilantes captured and left in the custody of  local law enforcement, an incident that initially seemed destined to become countercultural legend but was instead quickly suppressed by pacifists -- a telling example of how despite its claims of humanitarian intent, pacifism most often serves the oppressors by minimizing or eliminating reports of successful resistance to oppression. Particularly notable in this context is the fact there is now good reason to suspect the vigilantes who terrorized the rural Counterculture during the late 1960s and early-to-mid 1970s were among the paramilitary forces of Operation CHAOS (capitalization as in original).

I cannot over-stress  that because “Dancer” with all its 24 years of notes and tapes and nearly all its photography was destroyed, the pre-1983  material in this work is of necessity reconstructed almost entirely from memory, with small portions of it confirmed by  papers that had accompanied me back to Manhattan and thus escaped the flames.  Its credibility has already been challenged in response to the condensations for lit-mag brevity and the disguises of locales  to protect the privacy of the present-day property owners that characterized its initial public presentation via this blog. Nevertheless each of these modifications -- disguising geography and shortening lengthy recitations of detail by condensation -- are forms of what might be termed truthful fictionalization, and when their use is announced to readers in advance, as indeed they were, they are therefore  legitimate journalistic techniques.

The protective rationale for disguise is so obvious it need not be repeated;  the rationale for condensation is usually brevity in the reporting of an event or series of events, and its journalistic success -- that is, its veracity -- is determined by how accurately it mirrors whatever actually obtained. In this regard, I cannot fault the lit-mag form in which I originally published this work via Outside Agitator's Notebook, as Dispatches was titled in 2010. I merely combined my experiences at several places and presented them as if they occurred in a single locale, itself a composite of their original venues. Essentially the same technique is often used without controversy by sportswriters in seasonal wrap-ups, as I know from my own sports-writing years, 1956-1959 and 1962-1964.

I can and do, however, severely fault myself for my failure to recognize the potential historical and perhaps biographical value of the Back-to-the-Land Movement material in its un-condensed form. For that I am most regretful. Thus, to make the amends demanded by any such act of contrition, the following restores as many of the omitted or disguised details as is possible given that its original sources no longer exist.

The result, even with my post-1983 discoveries included, is an admittedly far-from-complete chronology of a very small part of  the history of the  Back-to-the-Land Movement and the Counterculture in general. It is centered on events known to its local veterans as "the Vigilante War,"   a conflict since banished from public recollection primarily by two groups of ideologically motivated censors: the first group includes the disciples  of patriarchy, capitalism and Christian theocracy who also suppress the Counterculture's  often unwitting resurrection of the Great Goddess, its spontaneous embrace of Gaian paganism and its role as the first wave in a burgeoning global revolution against patriarchy and all its ecogenocidal offspring; the second group is made up of the pacifists and forcible civilian-disarmament fanatics  outraged by the lesson implicit in the local triumphs of armed Back-to-the-Land communards against the Ku-Klux-Klan-minded bands of  vigilantes.  That lesson -- the fact armed self-defense is sometimes our only effective antidote to right-wing terrorism --  is why the pacifists likewise scheme to eradicate historical memories of the Battle of Blair Mountain and the Deacons for Defense. Fortunately these histories are now documented by publicly available text and film; Blair Mountain is also defiantly immortalized in song so poignantly powerful its first hearing often evokes tears.

I began documenting the vigilante terrorism in Western Washington with still-photography and text, mostly the latter,  after the agricultural commune on which I was a long-term guest-participant permanently fended off a gang of vigilantes by armed resistance in the summer of 1970, a series of events in which I played a pivotal role, an intimidating but non-injurious display of rifle marksmanship.  Before year's end, I would come to recognize the anti-commune effort was genuinely nation-wide, targeting not just the Back-to-the-Land communes that were taking shape throughout the rural U.S., but also -- and with equal vindictiveness --  attacking their ideologically kindred non-agricultural urban and surburban counterparts. In retrospect, what we were witnessing was exemplary capitalist viciousness against any and all forms of collectivism --  against any effort by the working class, 99.9 Percent of our species' population, to socioeconomically achieve effective solidarity -- even on the most limited local basis. Years later, long after the commune on which I was a guest had fallen victim to internal political conflicts,  a man who had been a leading member of its ownership collective would publicly thank me for my vigilante-discouraging skill.

The significance of this work is thus that the fate of a single Countercultural commune -- whether a Back-to-the Land endeavor, a suburban housing enterprise or an urban collective of writers, visual artists and musicians  -- is quite literally a microcosm of the fate of our entire species.     

I should note too this is by no means my first attempt to compensate  as best I can for the fire's destruction of the relevant material.  I took it up first in 1985 while I was still in Manhattan, writing about the Vigilante War in a long poem the first line of which -- "It was that doorway, I guess" -- obviously shaped the present text. Much to my surprise, the poem, itself entitled "Doorways,"  was effusively praised by my Agence France-Presse friend Susan May Tell;  nevertheless I eventually abandoned it (and all attempts at poetry) as a foolhardy effort to tread in a realm I know now I am neither intellectually nor spiritually fit to occupy save via the alchemy of silver emulsion.  Later that same year I attempted it in prose, but abandoned that too in dyslexic despair, a reaction no doubt intensified by looming but then still unacknowledged post-fire depression. Though even at the depression's most miserable depth, my compulsion to write about the Vigilante War, however sporadic, retained its relentlessness. It was resurrected yet again by my apparently accidental yet pivotal  finding of the ruins of  another former commune, a place  not so isolated it escaped the vigilantes but back-country remote-enough I did not happen on its remnants until I was hunting grouse there in 1990. 

This (dare-I-say-it) Muse-driven process  -- my 1990 discovery and my equally unsought, unanticipated  discovery of another such out-of-the-way place during a 1992 grouse hunt -- often seems to have been so eerily guided, it still sometimes gives me a chill. In 1992 it led me to write a  free-form riff to accompany a quartet of pocket-camera images including the photograph above (Kodak Gold 400 exposed in the Olympus RC that served me so long so well), and it thus became the embryo of a belated eulogy for the Back-to-the-Land Movement. It is also testimony to the vigilantes' methodically pitiless  destruction of the  pacifist, foolishly unarmed, anti-gun and thus utterly defenseless faction of the Counterculture's self-proclaimed eco-agrarian revolutionaries. That in turn was the basis of the lit-mag composite I wrote in 2010, the rejection of which merely confirms the extent to which the once-educationally revolutionary impulses of my alma mater have since been utterly suppressed by the forces of national nazification. I therefore hope what follows will fulfill the imperative so often implicit in my discoveries. 

*****

III.  A House Filled with Pain 

WERE I TO CHOOSE the one detail that convinced me to explore and photograph the abandoned farmhouse and its tragedy-haunted environs, I would have to say it was the structure's doorway – its gaping darkness a rectilinear equivalent of Edvard Munch's Scream.

For years I felt drawn to the old place – I drove past it whenever I went north or south on the two-lane blacktop of the state highway, but it was a good 75 yards up a steep slope away from the road, and for most of the decade I resisted its summons. Now though, southbound in mid-July of  1978,  I saw how little time it had left: its cedar-shake roof half blown away by last January's blizzard and further deconstructed by April's storms, too many of its rafters already bare, some obviously broken, its walls striving ever more desperately to remain upright, their glass-less windows like eyes emptied by disaster – a perfect tableau of terminal urgency, as if before yielding to entropy the late Victorian structure demanded one last witness to its endurance.

I saw too that since I had driven past it two years before -- that is, since the last time Interstate 5 traffic was so unnervingly congested I chose to journey to or from Bellingham via the relative tranquility of back roads --  someone had built a one-room cedar-shake cabin on the far side of the yellow dirt road that seemed to promise access to both structures, its passage maybe 35 yards to the immediate north of the long-abandoned dwelling. Ascertaining the emptiness of the highway behind me, I braked, reversed and turned my red Honda Civic off the blacktop onto a roughly eroded, obviously mostly jeep-traveled two-rut climb into the wooded hills beyond. I downshifted to first gear for the ascent; noted by the cabin's  open-door condition it too had been abandoned; turned left into the adjacent and rapidly fading trace of the house's driveway, drove no more than five yards before my passage was  blocked by an outburst of blackberry brambles and exclamations of brash young alder; parked; dismounted; performed a just-in-case confirmation of the loaded-chamber condition of the .45-caliber M1911 Colt Government Model I legally carried concealed in a belt holster beneath my forest-green bush jacket; shrugged into a worn and faded World-War-II-surplus musette bag containing camera and tape recorder; cautiously and with upraised arms navigated another 25 or 30 yards through an overgrown plot that had obviously once been a substantial garden but was now a chest-high jungle of stinging nettle, thistles, the emphatic thorns of still more blackberries and of some aggressively ankle-grabbing species of vine I had not previously encountered.

Soon standing in the weedy clearing that contained the ruin of the house itself, I saw now that its entire front porch  had collapsed, that the rest of its structure was in far worse condition than I had seen from the highway. Long without paint, much of its exposed wood had weathered bone gray. Its  gaping, hollowed-out combination of  door and windows  suddenly reminded me of bleached skulls at backwoods crime scenes and left me wondering what dreadful memories it might contain. Reflecting on the skull image and the botanical obstructions provided by the thorns and nettles, I briefly wondered if this was the sort of place that preferred to retain its secrets undisclosed and was thus better left unexplored.

But I am journalist enough -- and agnostic enough -- to set aside such apprehensions, as indeed I did.  Wary of the fallen porch's  many protrusions of tetanus-rusty nails, I carefully stepped up over its rubble and through the doorway onto the erratically slumping remnants of the floor within. There I paused, fearing the planking might collapse even beneath the relative slenderness that was mine at age 38. To my left, most of the flooring in what had obviously been the living room was already gone, rotted, fallen into the crawl-space below; from between its ominously sagging joists the fungus-blackened corpse of a sofa protruded diagonally like a horror-movie creature climbing out of a grave,  its leather upholstery reduced to shreds of putrescence. To my right, the floor seemed intact, sturdy enough to support a huge rain-sodden mound of litter so diverse it suggested the malicious dumping of all the household's possessions in a single heap, perhaps as the prelude to  a somehow-thwarted plan for arson. The pile was waist-high; it filled nearly half of what had obviously been the dining room and seemed to beg for investigation. 

Thus curiosity once again overcame reluctance; I tested the surviving floor-boards by pressing them with my feet, carefully stepped further inside and began to mentally catalogue what I saw: a shattered Buddha, a cast-off sandal, a faded black silken slip with an East Coast label, other garments that suggested the place had housed at least two women and two men, a sodden, moldering pile of books obviously hurled from adjacent shelves – The Whole Earth Catalog shredded dead center by a close-range shotgun blast, Kahlil Gibran ripped apart at the spine –   contents that quickly identified the place as the former commune I had always assumed it to have been. Its walls were violently axe-marked, the windows likewise, their panes reduced to tooth-like shards in broken frames, the magnitude of rage that had fueled its destruction undeniable. The kitchen had been similarly trashed, its floor intact but its plumbing sledge-hammered into uselessness. I had never seen a dwelling that had been so hatefully wrecked, its devastation all the more grotesque in the happy-face afternoon sunlight shining through the remnants of its roof, a fury yet so residually frightful I felt a momentary surge of relief I was armed and a lingering sense of gratitude I could find no evidence there had been children amongst the victims of such undeniable terrorism.

For most of the next two hours I explored the ruined house and grounds; at some point  I fetched my 35mm-Summicron-lensed M2 Leica from my shoulder bag and began recording the heart-wrenching evidence on Tri-X I would push to 800 ASA; I shot one 36-exposure roll of film, what in those days we called "a heavy take." And heavy it was, in every sense of the word; though I had a half-dozen more rolls of film in my canvas shoulder-bag, one was not just all I needed to document what had happened here; it was also all I could emotionally bear to shoot.

Then I was done; I departed through the back doorway that led outside from the kitchen, climbed  further up the forested hillside to bypass the obstructive botany of the former garden and descended to cross the road and explore the tiny cabin. It was barely big enough to serve as a one-person bedroom. Its cedar-shake walls were yet new enough to yield a faint trace of their original perfume, but its contents -- a scattered stack of newspapers -- told me nothing about its builder or its occupant. The newspapers' dates indicated the place had not been occupied since mid-1977. I wondered if perhaps one of the ousted communards had sought to reclaim the land.

Back in my automobile I  groped my cassette recorder from a separate pocket I had sewed inside the musette bag's sturdy government-issue canvas, ascertained the recorder's  electronic  readiness, switched it on, placed it on the Honda's passenger seat  and -- as I resumed my drive south toward a blessedly lake-fronted dwelling near Seattle I would soon exit in the sad aftermath of a relationship destroyed not by incompatibility or spite but by the clash between my own scoop-the-world reportorial ferocity and my lover's equally fierce commitment to the feminist notion only women should be allowed to expose the misogynistic atrocities of Christian theocrats -- I began speaking unabashedly into its auxiliary microphone,  preserving without shame or any other self-censorship  my impressions of what I had documented on film and what I felt the ruin and the contents of its rubble-heap were telling me, a process that twice prompted floods of tears so dangerously blinding they forced me off the road to wait for my eyes to clear.

That night in my temporary dwelling I carefully stashed the tape in the filing cabinet that contained two drawers of research and the first but unintentionally final draft of a proposed Fairhaven College senior thesis I had written two years earlier -- a work ostensibly rejected in retaliation for my allegedly ignorant assertion the era's rock-festivals and be-ins should be viewed as rudimentary rituals -- but more likely because I had not realized the feminist members of my concentration committee felt I was trespassing in a realm that should be reserved for women. My ex-lover felt the same way about my latest scoop -- an investigative report that had ended a local Christian hospital's decades of bigoted, women-get-what-they-deserve  misogyny self-righteously inflicted as zero-tolerance refusal to treat rape victims in its emergency room. Even if a victim were dying of injuries, the hospital's Christian fanaticism demanded she (or he) be sent someplace else -- and the nearest elsewhere was a potentially fatal 20 miles away. Thanks to excellent sources in the police  and ambulance services, I had exposed the hospital's theocratic malevolence via a story banner-headlined across the top of Page One; within a day, the resultant public outrage forced the hospital to reverse its policy and secure rape-treatment training for its emergency-room doctors and nurses, bringing to a triumphant conclusion a hitherto-hopeless battle a feminist group led by my former lover had been fighting for at least five years. But for her and her fellow gender-warriors, the fact I was male rather than female turned victory to defeat; the astounding vindictiveness of their anger included the retaliatory termination of our relationship. Such was my eye-opening encounter with the identity politics by which our capitalist masters ensure the perpetual disunity of the 99.9 Percent -- and which, given the psycho-anthropological accuracy of my definitions of Woodstock and its related events as ritual, in all probability revealed the real reason my thesis was rejected. All of this -- facts, hypotheses, impressions, emotions -- would eventually coalesce into the final text of "Dancer."

*****

IV. Sorting the Debris

THE SOCIOECONOMIC RESEARCH  that became part of the contextual footings  of "Dancer" had already taught me how many of our nation's abandoned farms and rural dwellings had been confiscated by local governments for accumulated unpaid taxes dating back to the Crash of 1929 or even to the fatalities of the First World War;  given the stable, relatively inflation-free dollars that existed before Nixon destroyed U.S. currency by severing it from the guaranteed worth of its gold standard and thus reducing it to the implicitly inflationary fiat-money by which we of the 99.9 Percent have since been socioeconomically subjugated, these properties could often be bought for mere down-payments on the tax debt, which made them attractively easy purchases for  money-pooling collectives of otherwise-relatively impoverished young adults. Abandoned buildings in many cities and towns, including the gold-rush-era structures that became countercultural enterprises and a Back-to-the-Land community center in Bellingham's Fairhaven District,  were similarly obtained.       

On the formerly abandoned farms so purchased, the communards often built A-frame cabins to live in while they resurrected the land's long-fallow agricultural capabilities and restored abandonment-damaged but traditionally built and therefore structurally sound houses into their communal halls, often transforming them into  compellingly bright and comfortingly airy spaces for meeting space, kitchens, dining rooms, libraries and offices -- each project an assertion of their healthiest dreams and aspirations.  From the litter I found in the hate-savaged interior of the state-highway place,  I cannot doubt  this was the purpose of those who were ousted from it. But the vigilantes reduced it all to desolation, and so it had remained, every year slumping further into midden.

The relics in the isolated ruin I discovered while searching Cascade Mountain foothills for archeological anomalies in 1977 likewise revealed a former commune the violent denouement of which was indicated by the bones that shone palely in the obviously polluted waters of its antique well; killing communards' ubiquitous goats and chickens, then weaponizing the corpses to poison their wells was a favorite vigilante tactic

Maybe in 1975 -- I am no longer certain of the year, and the fire-loss makes it impossible to confirm -- I drove to a place colloquially known as "Hippie Hydro," where enterprising communards had dammed a creek and installed a water-powered dynamo to generate their own electricity, creating a notably troutly pond some eight or ten feet deep. A few friends and I had standing permission to (easily) catch that era's six-fish limit from the pond and afterwards feast accordingly, just as I intended doing on this particular day. But, as I would soon discover to my astonishment and dismay, the pond had vanished; now as if in lamentation the creek gurgled somberly between the steeply barren banks of its former depths,  and the adjacent house, though intact, was abandoned. The dam, I soon learned, had been dynamited by vigilantes, and its communal foursome had retreated back east to the more familiar oppressions they had sought to flee.

Urban communes and many related countercultural enterprises often suffered similar fates, inflicted not by vigilantes per se, but by vigilante-minded cops or so-called "developers" who often inexplicably acquired impossibly huge sums of money sufficient to enable their seizure of tax-indebted properties by paying the full balances owed and thus nullifying the time-payment agreements Counterculture folks had negotiated with the taxation authorities. This is how the countercultural enterprises of Bellingham's Fairhaven District were destroyed; a Bellingham police officer memorably informed me in 1972 much of this money came from "secret" sources. 

Given the combination of my Marxian politics, my professional background and my recognition of the revolutionary implications of the resurrection of the Great Goddess implicit in countercultural aesthetics, I was never  surprised by the ubiquity of anti-Counterculture  atrocities. In 1969, near the end of my two-year tenure as news editor of the Morristown, N.J.,  Daily Record, I supervised the coverage of the irreparable destruction inflicted by local police to make a Victorian-era mansion occupied by an emphatically drug-free housing collective permanently uninhabitable. During my first years as the founding photographer of The Seattle Sun, 1974 and 1975, star reporter Bruce Olson and I twice visited abandoned single-family Victorian-era houses that had housed urban communes shut down by mass arrests and vandalized by police to ruins fit only for demolition. Bruce and I also wondered if the perpetrators of such destruction had been bribed to do so by developers who wanted the properties as sites for more profitable housing, though neither of us ever unearthed any evidence of such scheming.   

Less obvious forces also plagued the communards. The Oyster Creek Commune south of Bellingham thrived on its commercial oyster-harvest until 1981 but was bankrupted by an unprecedented outbreak of red tide, an environmental affliction to which the Sailish Sea had hitherto been immune and which some folks thus suspected may have been environmental warfare. Other communes, including the one in which I was a guest-participant, were rent asunder by early manifestations of the carefully conditioned, self-obsessed egotism I would in 1972 label "terminal communitis" -- typically the irreparable divisions fostered by the bottomless contempt with which the class-traitors who cling to petite-bourgeois moral imbecility view those of us -- often Marxians -- who properly acknowledge membership in the 99.9 Percent is also membership in the working class. In its present-day, methodically intensified identity-politics form, I would watch the same conflict repeatedly undermine the potential solidarity of the Occupy Movement.  But just as there is no doubting the magnitude of the brute-force and secret-police campaigns the ruling class unleashed against Occupy, neither is there any doubt the vigilantism that destroyed so many avowedly pacifist  Back-to-the-Land communes was part of a much broader national assault against the entire Counterculture. See again the above link (in Section II) to Mae Brussell's disclosures about the aesthetic and spiritual warfare  implicit in Operation CHAOS; note also the more conventionally focused COINTELPRO (caps as in original). And for a potential shocker, contemplate in the context of Richard Belzer's disclosures in Hit List the number of feminist activists who have been slain by cancer.     

Since we are now briefly venturing into realms typically tabooed as outré, I should mention the Vigilante War was not without its psychic after-effects. In 1980, still a member of the working press,  I chanced to spend maybe 18 hours at a former commune as the   guest of a Tacoma woman, a social-worker friend with whom I shared a 1940 birth-year and an abiding interest in sociology. She had inherited the house, land and attendant outbuildings; they were accessed by a short drive off a graded dirt road just outside the western border of a Washington national forest. The dwelling was a well-maintained 1930s-vintage cottage beside a troutly creek and shaded by a pair of cottonwoods,  its good condition all the more surprising given how its communal occupants had been  terrorized into permanent departure by local vigilantes on a rainy June night seven years beforehand. My hostess's benefactor was the commune's founder, a close relative -- let's call him Huber -- whom she said had died under mysterious circumstances soon after he announced his intention to press charges against the vigilantes; the woman believed he'd been murdered. She said she had never been a member of the collective but was their guest "almost every weekend" and now as a kind of memorial to their efforts hoped to make the  house her vacation refuge. But she was well aware of the vindictive sadism of the white Christian fundamentalists who were the majority of the area's sparse population, and she wanted to be careful not to do anything that would attract more hostility. That's why, she said, she'd never invite more than one or two friends to accompany her to the place.  In fact I was the first man she'd ever brought there.

I thought her vacation-refuge plan a good idea, not the least because I enjoyed her company and relished the notion of fishing the creek. During our initial hours in the house, the warm glow of its fireplace and the comforts of its furnishings seemed to welcome us and encourage our already established intimacy, but as night came on,  we were each increasingly troubled by an ever-more-intensely eerie ominousness, its consequence one of the most fretfully sleepless nights I've ever experienced, after which she admitted she  never dared occupy the place alone because she believed it haunted by Huber's less-than-friendly ghost. But she'd hoped it was just her "over-active" imagination; she'd invited me, she said, not only because of our mutual fondness, but because she knew my agnosticism included sufficient open-mindedness and sensitivity to things unseen I'd let her know if anything was actually psychically amiss. Needless to say, I  warned her accordingly, admitting I'd glimpsed the ghostly figure of a child -- a boy maybe age six or seven -- pass through the kitchen when I'd gotten out of our bed to get us a glass of water.

Stunned and tearful, she told me something I could not have known; another of the communards, a divorced man,  had a seven-year-old son who'd spent most of July here the year before the vigilantes came. The boy "dearly loved the place," she said; "loved us all; we loved him too." But a couple of years later, she'd heard the boy had died.  "I never knew how," she said, explaining his father had moved "someplace back east" and she'd never met the boy's mother, who "lived in one of the big mid-western cities, Minneapolis or maybe Chicago."  

"So it's not just haunted by Huber," she concluded. "There's more than one ghost here. That's really what I was afraid of..."          

The next morning, before we left to return to Tacoma, the woman showed me the former commune's garden-space; a fenced square maybe 50 feet per side. She said its productivity had been "mind-blowing," its companion-planted beans, corn, pumpkins and squash had yielded three times the anticipated harvest; its tomatoes had remained free of the late blight that so plagues Pacific Northwest gardens; its beets and carrots had resisted both insects and moles. "Tastiest vegetables I ever ate," she said. But now every inch of it had been overwhelmed by nightshade beneath which, half hidden by its foliage,  were scattered chunks of jagged-edged white stone. I asked; the woman said the garden's centerpiece had been a concrete pedestal  topped by a marble statue of Venus, placed there "because, well...it just felt right." She hesitated, tossed her shoulder-length blonde hair, raised her sky-blue eyes to mine; "actually, it felt protective.  Powerfully protective. That's why we danced around it naked to celebrate the harvest" -- yet another commonplace example of the Counterculture's typically spontaneous  role in the often-unwitting resurrection of the Goddess and her ancient rituals. But the vigilantes -- "so very glad I was at a conference in California when they attacked," she said -- had sledge-hammered the statue to rubble. For a moment the anguish conveyed by the Venus-fragments seemed almost audible, stifled whimpers, pleas for help silenced by the red-berried toxins of poisonous green vines. I thought again of the violent hatred evident in the destruction of the state-highway abode;  such was the fury of patriarchal vengeance, agitated to maximum viciousness by a ruling class educated well enough in its private universities to be terrified by the revolutionary potential of the Goddess's return.  Quoth a then-favorite Pacific Northwest bumper-sticker: Goddess Is Coming and She Is Pissed.

*****

V. Once More Locked Out

BY 1987, I WAS essentially hiding in the rural Pacific Northwest; the previous autumn, post-fire depression had encroached to the point it was impossible for me to continue my work in Manhattan as the editor-in-chief of Art Direction, a top-quality magazine that had begun its multi-decade life as advertising's primary international trade-journal, dedicated to the learned exploration of the aesthetics and techniques of visual communication. Despite its history of excellence, it was in danger of  drowning in the ever-expanding extermination of print media that is one of the many apocalyptic  consequences of the intentionally fatal undertow of capitalism-cum-nazism's  methodically imposed ignorance and electronic-media-inflamed self-obsession and moral imbecility. The magazine's owner and publisher had together paid me the supreme compliment of hiring me to attempt its resuscitation, and I had at least been able to re-energize it enough to stop its circulation loss. Meanwhile the metastasizing intellectual and emotional malignancy of the wounds inflicted by the fire -- no doubt precisely as those who commanded the arson intended -- were making it increasingly difficult for me to sustain anything approaching the responsive mindfulness that had originally so impressed both the magazine's principals. Rather than fire me, in October of 1986 they had mercifully abolished my position. Though I did not know it at the time, it would be the finale of my 30-year working-press career. The magazine itself would die in 1993.

Now, surviving on New York State's uniquely non-retributive unemployment compensation, I was living in subsistence-gardening poverty as I sought to somehow patch my faculties back together enough to either turn my successful 1982-83 tenure as engineer/deckhand aboard a 96-foot seiner into another fishing-boat job or -- as I would unsuccessfully attempt two years later -- gain acceptance to a vocational-rehabilitation program I had learned was desperately seeking applicants to train as sonar operators to do salmon-counts and off-season bottom-studies for the state fisheries patrol; apparently most potential applicants were repelled by the job's requirement of two or three weeks per month at sea, a condition by which I would not have been the least bit troubled. 

Meanwhile the local economy remained so traumatized by Ronnie-the-Nazi's shock-doctrine Reagonomics, the former annual turnover in the fishing fleet had become nonexistent. And the venomously anti-male, anti-military-veteran bigotry of a feminist-dominated welfare bureaucracy was -- as a state superior court judge would reveal via The Seattle Post-Intelligencer in 1993 -- methodically excluding substantial numbers of eligible men from many of the government-managed rehab opportunities.

*****

VI. Summoned Through Another Doorway

Companions -LeeRoy and I  Gillies Road 1988 self-portrait LeeRoy and I c. 1988; born on the vernal equinox of 1987, in this picture he's a year-and-a-half old. A selfie made with the Olympus RC on a tripod. (Photo by Loren Bliss © 2023) 

ON THE 1990 AFTERNOON of what would become my penultimate discovery in the depressing series of violence-savaged communes I chanced to explore between 1969 and 1992 -- eight such places in all -- I was subsistence-hunting grouse with my beloved dog LeeRoy. It was mid September; LeeRoy was three years and six months old. Raising him from puppyhood, I had quickly discovered him to be an irrepressibly intelligent and perceptive creature with a playful sense of humor and so strong an impulse for voluntary helpfulness, he learned by observation to unload  groceries, laundry and many other such items from my vehicles. He was a half-Rottweiler/half-Golden retriever boarding-kennel accident; in his prime he weighed a muscular 110 pounds. He looked like a Rottie with an intact tail -- I consider tail-docking a form of sadism --  and somehow as if by seeming telepathy he had taught himself to flush birds and rabbits and fetch their carcasses as reliably as any hunting dog I've ever known.  

By then the ruin beside the state highway had vanished, its acreage cleared, graded, re-contoured and seeded with a carefully tended lawn to accommodate an attractively tidy manufactured house. Witnessing its transformation as I had driven past the site on the way back from a trip to Seattle the week previous, it  seemed to me the land itself had become forgetful, that perhaps what had happened there was such an accurate  microcosm of the apocalypse that now afflicts us all,  an event so dreadful, Nature herself had chosen to purge it from memory as quickly as possible, and as she sometimes does -- as she is so obviously doing in tolerating the 6,000-year-old patriarchal revolution and thus fostering capitalism's methodical extermination of our species by its relentless destruction of our habitat -- she enlisted human assistance. 

Even so, the fate of that one commune had come to represent for me -- as it yet does and probably always will -- the methodical destruction of an entire generation's solarium of dreams.   

And with LeeRoy I soon discovered fate would not allow me to abandon the story; my grouse-quest hauled the Vigilante War  back into sharp focus; our search for birds  brought us to a scarcely discernible former clearing surrounded by a stand of mixed Big-Leaf maples and Douglas firs on a hilltop that contained a mostly overgrown rectangle of charred and crumbling masonry and heat-cracked stones  I would later learn were the fading remnants of a Victorian farm-house that had been a communal dwelling when it was torched by vigilantes in 1968 or 1969.

Its communards -- about whom I could learn nothing (as 20-odd years later, my sources could recall only the scantiest details of the commune's fate) --  were thus probably among the Vigilante War's first Western Washington victims.   

The sad remnants of their endeavor were in the middle of a much larger tract of older second-growth mixed deciduous and coniferous forest near the Canadian border. I had driven my yellow 1981 Datsun pickup truck maybe a mile into its woods along one of the region's ubiquitous unpaved logging road and parked where the road ended at an earthen barrier; I had then  followed LeeRoy's eager nose-to-the-ground leadership along what I thought was a game trail northward through the roadside  underbrush and into the potentially grouse-productive forest beyond. Probably 15 minutes from the road, we emerged from the deeply shaded density of old second-growth timber to discover a surprisingly open-sky area of firs and maples  so  widely spaced they appeared to have been formally landscaped;  by their size they were probably at least a century old. Now  I could see what I had assumed to be a deer-and-elk trail was actually  the trace of a road so  long unused it  remained visible only as a slight linear depression through the curiously low-growing underbrush of its surroundings; the only traces of any structure's former presence were the foundation and a small, obviously ancient, grotesquely unkempt orchard, three pear trees and three apple trees  crouched over a  densely thriving patch  of weedy sod on the down-slope beyond the charred masonry and crowded together in a tangled embrace, their horror-show branches begrudgingly displaying a few specimens of prematurely rotten fruit, the area ominously silent and strangely  devoid of the  tracks and scat that normally evidence the irresistible attractiveness of pears and apples to wildlife of all breeds and sizes.

Suddenly the place felt not just forlorn but somehow malevolently so. My mind brought up repugnant images of the commune's demise that took shape much as D-76 would have retrieved them from photographic paper; I have no idea whether these were products of imagination or an actual reading of the site's history, though I have long suspected many of our so-called hauntings are the non-supernatural product of the environment's yet-unexplored ability to somehow record and spontaneously reveal pivotal events -- witness the more blatant examples of so-called psychic phenomena associated with Gettysburg or British highways built over Roman roads -- in any case a process in which individual belief (or non-belief) is seemingly irrelevant. 

Soon the elongation of  shadows as  the mid-September sun sank toward an adjacent ridge intensified the locale's aura of hostility; I briefly wondered if one of the communards had been murdered there, though I could find no evidence -- and believe me I searched for it -- of slayings committed during any of Western Washington's vigilante raids; there were said to be beatings aplenty, yes, and a few rapes, but no killings. Pondering what in the era's lexicon were called "bad vibes," I noted LeeRoy also seemed to feel the sense of menace, and I had learned in my boyhood never to dismiss canine perceptiveness. Now LeeRoy glared at me; reading the urgency in his eyes -- "nothing for us here but danger, boss; let's move on while we still can" -- I let him lead me back to more welcoming surroundings. We returned to the road, crossed it, found another path or game-trail through the woods, no doubt the trace of yet another long-forgotten route for hauling timber, its margins edged by bracken, blown thistles  and pearly everlasting.   

We continued our hunt, pausing at a tiny brook, crystal-clear water that bubbled from a nearby spring, murmured soothingly through rounded clusters of moss-greened boulders,  pooled briefly in a moss-free circular depression atop a flat gray slab as if to offer passers-by a refreshingly cold drink, then crossed the path in a colorfully pebbled passage scarcely a child's step wide and continued on its boulder-marked way to the river a quarter-mile distant. LeeRoy lapped the water as I mentally immersed myself in the wild beauty of the place. Looking about in the notably golden-hued late-afternoon light, it brought to mind poignant  memories from 1970; at that time, an emigrant from regions long ago settled, I had never before witnessed such prophetic autumnal color, so new and yet so eerily familiar, coniferous greens turned stygian by their stunning contrast with the implausibly bright yellow of the Big-Leaf maples, a cautionary vision of the encroaching magnitude of winter darkness, a summer-god's last warning before yielding the land to that vague sense of  post-Hallowe'en emptiness that annually declares the inevitable victory of his winter twin. Such was  my first autumn in the Pacific Northwest and the conclusion of  those blessed months I spent on the commune -- days gardening or fishing or cutting firewood or hunting, evenings conversing with my comrades, with Robert Graves' White Goddess as my bedtime reading and early morning  meditation.  Now a decade later I was momentarily startled by an eerie sense of having suddenly fallen backwards in time. I remember I glanced to see how LeeRoy was reacting and was profoundly relieved to note his demeanor was unchanged; he had finished his drink, gazed at me as if perplexed I too hadn't drank from the brook, impatiently awaited my signal to resume our quest. Which we did: by the end of legal hunting hours he had flushed two birds and we had scored a two-grouse feast.

*****       

VII. Inside a Tiny Sanctuary

THE FOLLOWING SUMMER, driving from Bellingham to my rented cabin near Nooksack on the Sumas River, I passed the more recently abandoned structures of a commune to which my comrades and I had sometimes transported hitch-hiking pairs of women during that oh-so-promising summer of 1970. I knew the place had survived the vigilante war, which prompts the supposition its members were armed, though I have no specific knowledge to confirm that; our conversations with the women were typically exchanges of information about subsistence gardening, places to cut firewood, that sort of thing.  

Wondering what its vacant buildings might tell me, I turned my Datsun pick-up truck into its still readily accessible driveway, left LeeRoy behind to guard my truck or alert me to any unanticipated arrivals and proceeded to explore. The main house was locked; there was nothing I could spot through its un-curtained windows save the uncommunicative barrens of empty wallboard walls and equally mute plank floors, and of course I had no intention of breaking and entering.

But a smaller dwelling behind it -- a place I vaguely remembered had been erected by some of the women to whom we had given rides --  remained accessible, and inside were a few indicative items that identified its former occupants as female but offered no clue to the reasons for their departures. One of these items was a white enameled crescent-moon earring made of some metal I could not identify, the sort of Goddess-symbol so many countercultural women had instinctively acquired and worn despite their conscious-mind's unawareness of its ancient significance. Recognizing it as a genuine relic, I plucked it from the floor and pocketed it,  cherishing it as a memento of a genuinely blessed time, thinking I would include it in the medicine bag I was contemplating making as a gift to myself, a private celebration of my discovery my mostly Celtic genes are seasoned by a long-ago First Nations ancestor, a maternal foremother who was most likely a Mohawk.  I did just that. Today, 32 years later, I am again wearing that same medicine bag, a comforting talisman that sometimes seems to ease this writing.      

Though it has no particular relevance to the conclusion of this story, eventually I would discover the property where I found the earring had been sold after a multi-year vacancy, that its structures were being remodeled by an obviously yuppoid man and wife  who had no notion of its history or of the women who had dwelt there in harmony eventually interrupted by the hostile forces that assailed us all. Remembering their smiles, their fearlessness in the company of fellow communards, the body language that spoke so clearly of so many female Back to the Landers'  characteristic combination of freedom and sense of obligation to our Mother Earth, I wondered what had become of them. For an instant my mind's eye saw them as they had been in 1970, clothed  in brightly colored  ankle-length homemade dresses reminiscent of far more ancient times and laughing in the heartfelt joy that follows the banishment of patriarchal shame. I wish them well; they and I and everyone like us shared that revolutionary  ethos first expressed by Nat King Cole in the 1948 song entitled "Nature Boy," its lyrics written by Eden Ahbenz and decades later performed more fetchingly by Cher, a seemingly secular incantation that  assures  us "the greatest thing you'll ever learn/ is just to love and be loved in return."  Some of us, myself among them, yet hold to it as our species' ultimate truth, wondering with no small degree of awe how a commercial enterprise in a capitalist world dared popularize a message so profound.

*****     

VIII. Back to the Land

I WAS AGAIN grouse hunting with LeeRoy when I found what would be the last of the abandoned communes I would discover. As I said,  this was in 1992, and the place yielded four telling photographs including the one with which this memoir opens. It was, I remember,  an encouragingly  sunny, comfortingly cloudless, emphatically azure-sky afternoon in early October when I  turned my yellow Datsun  southward up an unpaved,  sometimes steep but annually graded logging-truck route the era's topographical maps showed bore a name suggestive of suburban development and which climbed deep into the aged second-growth deciduous and coniferous forest on the northern end of one of the more westernmost Cascade mountains.  (Though the troubling fact the forest road  had been named suggested the region's potential reduction into the environmental toxicity of suburban housing, I write this in the past tense because by '93 it had been gated closed, seemingly permanently, and present day satellite imagery suggests it is no more.) But this was '92, when some of the mountain's northern heights were still being cleared  of timber and the road was regularly traveled on workdays by loggers, though we were there on a Saturday or Sunday, when there were no logging trucks to raise choking clouds of yellowish dust from its unpaved surface or crowd me off its single lane as they thundered past, the drivers often blasting their air-horns and jeering, cursing me for daring drive a rationally sized, responsibly fuel-conserving import into a realm presumably reserved for limitless consumption, run-amok xenophobia and triumphant anti-environmentalism. Perhaps two miles beyond the beginning of the road's ascent, it angled abruptly eastward to cross a bridge that spanned the five-foot width of a clear, cold, swift and dependably troutly creek; then the road abruptly turned due south again to continue its climb.  Just before the road veered onto the bridge, the deeply rutted remnant of an older, pre-bridge, west-side-of-the-creek version of the same route continued south but abruptly ended within 50 yards, permanently closed where a section of the  steep-sided valley's slope had collapsed into an already overgrown  barrier.

There I parked and locked the Datsun. The size and shape of the blockage indicated a smallish landslide,  a minimally disruptive example of much more ruinous disasters, substantial sections of barren slopes and sometimes entire mountainsides collapsed by the symbiotic combination of the region's sometimes-torrential winter-monsoon rains with the environmental ruin heedlessly inflicted by clear-cutting,  crippling highways and railroads for however many days, weeks or months it took to reconstruct them and occasionally obliterating entire communities. The height of the fir and alder saplings that had sprung from the obstruction suggested it was at least a decade old. Beyond the barrier, the old road had closely paralleled the creek for several hundred yards upstream, but now the mixed forest and its encroaching underbrush had  shrunk it to a path so overgrown I doubted even a dirt bike could have traveled it. With abundant deer and elk tracks evident in its few remaining bare spots,  it  seemed well on its way to becoming  a mere game trail, a common evolution for the region's abandoned roads, and -- no surprise --  its first maybe 300 hundred yards had  proven so dependably productive, we had never explored it further; LeeRoy and I had taken a half-dozen grouse  there in September, October and early November of '90 and '91, and this year it had already given us two birds and a rabbit. But in his eagerness, LeeRoy sometimes ignored my repeated reminders to "stay close." Today he'd flushed a grouse out of a path-side blackberry bramble too far ahead of me to shoot, and now -- as if in embarrassment and by way of apology -- his body-language made it clear he intended to find the bird again and this time flush it close enough for me to bag it.   

***

For those unfamiliar with firearms, I should digress a bit to explain that the effective range of a shotgun is determined by a quality called "choke," which controls how much its shot spreads sideways -- how it "patterns" -- in its passage down-range; that's why open-bored shotguns loaded with bird shot are useless much beyond 25 yards. I was 13 years old when my father began teaching me to hunt quail, grouse and pheasant with his traditional side-by-side double, a 12-gauge Fox Model B he'd mail-ordered from Montgomery Wards, which sold this excellent gun under its Western Field house-brand name; its right-hand barrel was choked slightly ("improved cylinder") and its left barrel moderately ("modified"); at 25 yards the right barrel patterned most of its shot into a 30-inch circle, the left into about 20 inches, and I quickly learned not to shoot at any bird flying much beyond that approximate range.  

Apart from a 1830s-vintage Hudson's Bay trade-musket I bought for  $15 in 1955 and often used during my high-school years simply because a couple of dollars worth of powder and shot would provide me the same season's hunting as $10 or $15 worth of modern ammunition, and a $50 Savage Model 24 over-under combination gun I used in rural Washington when I was an impoverished undergraduate c. 1971-1976  -- it had a modified-choke 20-gauge barrel surmounted by a .22 magnum barrel, the latter especially useful for shooting grouse perched in backwoods trees  --  I never carried anything but traditional side-by-side doubles on bird hunts.

Of all the shotguns I would own, the percussion Pedersoli 10-gauge with which I routinely hunted c. 1990-2003 was undoubtedly the most dependably accurate and versatile; charging it with genuine (never replica) black powder, I loaded it with number eight shot to (reliably) bust clay pigeons during wing-shooting practice; with number six shot for (reliably) taking grouse and/or rabbits;  and when both deer and small game were in season or news of local bear or cougar emergencies suggested LeeRoy and I might find ourselves on somebody's menu, I loaded the un-choked ("cylinder bore") right barrel with its usual charge of number six, but loaded the slightly choked left barrel (equivalent of modern "improved cylinder") with a 72-caliber, 1.25-ounce lead hollow-base slug cannibalized from modern shotgun ammunition or a .75-caliber, 630-grain patched lead "pumpkin ball"; the former projectile expanded to fit the bore, and paper-target work proved it usefully accurate out to about 75 yards; the latter was less accurate, and I'd not have attempted a shot beyond 50 yards. Though I never took a deer or slew an attacking predator with either load, comparative testing on  water-filled one-gallon milk jugs backed by seasoned fir planks indicated the slugs from the Pedersoli were every bit as devastating as comparable projectiles fired from  modern guns; the patched round balls were notably more so.

*** 

It was the obvious hope of flushing that same grouse again, this time within my shotgun's limited range, that seemingly prompted LeeRoy to urge me  much further up the mountain into an area I had not hitherto explored. Following the path another few hundred yards, I discovered the creek had cut itself a trench five or six feet deep, probably its response to the environmental disruption of a clear-cutting maybe a half-century earlier; the path that had evolved from  the road-remnant continued in close parallel until it reached the two-foot-diameter trunk of a fallen conifer that conveniently spanned the trench;  here, though a depression in the overgrown terrain indicated the abandoned road had proceeded upstream on the west side of the creek, the path itself now zigged eastward across the gully via the log. We followed its route; LeeRoy backed up a few paces for the running start of what became a breathtakingly graceful eight-foot leap; I crossed far more cautiously, balancing apprehensively on the barkless, treacherously slick surface of the log, using my shotgun like a tightrope-walker's balance pole. The path, here so frequently traveled by elk and deer it was suddenly  mostly bare earth, then zagged south again, once more paralleling the creek. 

Maybe another hundred yards up the mountain the path dwindled to its end amidst a stand of alders on a curious little hillock, a plateau  perhaps 50 yards wide and no more than twice that distance long. The creek at this point was in an open meadow maybe 75 yards to the west, flowing through a slight depression in a more serpentine version of the same sort of trench it had eroded for itself parallel the abandoned road, all traces of which had now vanished.

The alders seemed no more than three or four decades old; beneath them was a tiny pond, a near-perfect oval  maybe 10 feet long, four feet wide and no more than two feet deep, remarkably clear water with what its outer margins indicated was an always constant level; its depth apparently regulated by its source, as are some spring-fed pools I had known in Appalachia, it had no discernible outflow and was thus oddly well-like. Nor could I see any visible life-forms therein.  Its bowl-shaped bottom was coated by the same crop of brown leaves that uniformly carpeted the entire grove, its covering everywhere thick enough to prohibit the growth of any underbrush,  obviously several years' undisturbed accumulation of the foliage shed by these alders.

To my surprise I realized I could not dismiss a feeling this place had some unique significance, as if it were trying to tell me something I was yet too dense to comprehend. I repeatedly circled the little pond, wondering what its message might be and how it might appear or if I were merely being a foolish old man. The clear, slightly copper-hued depth of the pond evoked fond memories of how in the vernal months of my East Tennessee school-years, such realms were invariably the trysting-place of frogs, loudly loquacious subspecies that ranged from inch-long spring peepers to 18-inch bullfrogs and sang at truly astonishing volume,  their waters soon brimming with gooey tell-tale strings of frog eggs, then with tadpoles we caught and kept in Mason jars as they matured into frogs, which the peepers did in two or three months. I recollect I was vaguely disappointed this tiny body of water held no discernible traces of life at all. 

LeeRoy, nose to the ground,  moved down the slight slope into the dense underbrush that resumed east of the clearing; obviously he had not forgotten our quest for the grouse he had prematurely flushed beyond the range of my shotgun. And there amidst the brush just a few yards beyond him was the visual surprise of a ruined truck cab that appeared to have been painted in colorful psychedelic anarchy, an exclamatory relic I soon identified as the fully stripped remains of a full-sized 1940s-vintage pickup truck -- a vehicle I vaguely remembered as a driveable restoration proudly shown me by some Back-to-the-Landers in 1970. It was deeply perplexing too; search as I might, I could not find so much as a single trace of any passage to explain its presence. Then I discovered the collapsing A-frame I would soon realize had been deliberately wrecked; beyond it in even more dense underbrush I would find the second A-frame and the evidence it too had been trashed,  the pair defined by their contents as the former dwellings of communards. I groped into my shotgun bag for the Olympus RC I had adopted as an always-carry pocket camera; I photographed what I saw, silently cursing myself for having neither cassette recorder nor notebook and pen to preserve my impressions of the place.

LeeRoy watched me, obviously pleased, and when I shot the last of 24 frames and cranked the 35mm film back into its container -- the only film I had that day was the roll within the camera -- he turned about as if to go home, looking over his shoulder as if to ensure I followed.

Abandoned commune 3 - Copy

Abandoned commune 4 - Copy

Abandoned commune 1 - Copy

The truck-cab to which I was led by fate manifest as LeeRoy's quest for a prematurely flushed grouse and what I then saw beyond it; forcing my way through the underbrush I encountered the first of the two vigilante-destroyed A-frames I would discover that sunny fall day in 1992.  (Photos by Loren Bliss © 2023)

As we returned to the Datsun, it occurred to me the fact the commune was adjacent to a named road -- that it probably had been accessed by that same road's earlier, landslide-obstructed route (which at the commune-site was merely so overgrown I could find no visible trace of it) -- suggested tracts of land along its length were already the properties of individual owners. As I said earlier, the fact a logging road has been given a name is often the harbinger of suburban development -- which means the communards may well have owned the property from which they were ousted. Whatever; Nature had made her message  undeniable: the land does not wish to remember. 

*****

IX. Epilogue

WRITING THIS AS I recover all-too-slowly from Covid in the summer of 2023 resurrects poignant recollections of all for which we yearned and all that was so hurtfully stolen from us.

As soon as I can muster up the determination to endure the gravely vexing tedium of typing it into electronic space, I will post here an intra-Dispatches link to the (foolishly) optimistic essay I wrote for Northwest Passage in July 1970. (Yes, "gravely vexing" is an understatement: for me, severely dyslexic, writing on a keyboard is relatively easy, but copying an existing manuscript by typing or longhand is an hour-per-page fight against genetic inferiority that invariably rekindles the conditioned self-loathing imposed by the capitalists'  hatred and contempt for any working-class person whose exploit-ability promises less-than-maximum profits -- which, dear readers, is precisely why the moral imbecility at the core of capitalism mandates we be taught from birth to despise disabled persons and culturally less-exploitable exploitable minorities.) Meanwhile, those of you who wish to undertake the chore of searching Western Washington University's public archives can find it here by scrolling to Page 16.  By-lined "Aengus L. Forsythe" -- a pseudonym I chose to honor my heartfelt empathy with the protagonist in Yeat's "Song of the Wandering Aengus" (here performed by Judy Collins) -- it is the only (serious) writing in which I  protected myself by a nom-de-guerre, which I did  because my creation of a fictional, more-dangerous-than-Weatherman, "crypto-radical Seismology Faction" intent on faulting the bedrock of patriarchy was a ploy to aggravate the omnipresent plague of federal secret-police agents into intensifying their already oppressive efforts and maybe thereby accidentally exposing themselves, and I preferred not to invite the reprisal of an alleged "heart attack," being given a lesson in terminal ballistics by some asset-vigilante or "accidentally" drowning while wearing a cement life-jacket.     

Recalling the above  brings to mind the incident I briefly referenced above in "Breaking it Down." The story as repeatedly told in the Bellingham area c. 1970-71 was a band of vigilantes recruited from fanatically evangelical churches  had attacked a commune of a dozen members -- six couples who'd bought substantial acreage deep in the backwoods near the vicinity so named. They had cleared it for a soon-thriving subsistence garden and a raised a communal cabin that included lumber hewn from the trees cut for the garden; the men were said to have all fought in Vietnam as members of the same U.S. Army Special Forces team, and like so many of their fellow veterans, they had returned convinced it was not only the wrong war in the wrong place, but that we were on the wrong side. They were also said to be so disgusted by the atrocities they'd been forced to commit and the additional horrors they'd witnessed, they'd adopted an Amish-like mode of living, rejecting modern equipment and appliances and even weapons, arming themselves with replicas of Civil-War-vintage muzzle-loaders and traditional archery gear instead.

It was the communards' choice of antique armament, or so the story goes, that prompted the vigilantes to assume they'd be easy targets and jeeringly attack them on a July night in 1970. But the response -- the lethal whimper of .58-caliber Minié balls, the splatter of buckshot, the rapidity of fire achievable with percussion revolvers and the flights of broadhead arrows the women arced from behind the dense clouds of white smoke generated by their men's firearms quickly convinced the vigilantes to attempt retreat -- only to discover they'd been trapped in what I've always supposed, assuming the tale were true, was a classic ambush formidably executed with well-known Special Forces skill. Then the smallest of the male communards called out the biggest, burliest vigilante, challenged him to a weaponless, man-to-man fight and gave him an ultimate "ass-whupping," the most merciless non-lethal thrashing of his life. 

The next morning, or so it was said, the local sheriff found the vigilantes on a grassy shoulder of a state highway; they'd been stripped naked and roped together neck-to-neck like prisoners of war, their hands bound uncomfortably behind their backs. Their clothing was supposedly nowhere to be found, their nakedness said to be vengeance for the vigilantes' forcible stripping of communards. The stories differed as to whether there were any wounded; most said the communards deliberately shot to frighten not wound or kill, but a couple of the versions claimed some of the vigilantes were wounded but all had been given emergency medical treatment adequate to preserve their lives, a skill in which Special Forces soldiers were in fact trained. 

While I was never able to authoritatively confirm  the story's details,  I've no doubt it is at least partially true, as I know from personal experience the vigilantes had by that year's August adopted a policy of carefully scouting the communes to determine whether we were armed,  and if we were, devising methods to test our skills with weapons. Hence the sequence of midnight alerts where I was a guest, our dogs warning  of multiple prowlers invading the commune's 33 acres and rousing us to arms.  A few days later a stranger showed up at a community-solidarity gathering we were hosting and challenged us to a shooting match the commune's men and women quickly won, my own display of rapid-fire accuracy with a straight-stocked  Marlin .30-30 Texas carbine a pivotal part of the victory. Afterwards, with our guns back on their racks and the stranger's .348 Winchester Model 71 returned to the trunk of his grotesquely tail-finned mildew-green 1959 Plymouth  sedan, he promised to buy us all a case of beer, then drove away supposedly bound for a local store. Of course he never returned. But neither did the midnight intruders. 

Too many other communes -- those that were denied the means of self-defense by pacifism or urban innocence -- were not so fortunate. While the .01 Percenters and their political puppets damned all communes as doorways to communism, I cannot doubt they were particularly terrified by the Back to the Land Movement, for there the resurrection of the Goddess was taking shape within a definitively communal agrarian context, which foretold the eventual coalescence of its seemingly disparate elements into not just the secular eco-socialism already embryonic in the cities, but a genuinely revolutionary eco-socialism rooted in the real-world spirituality of our species' oldest and and most spontaneously enduring religion. And if I, a largely self-educated journalist, could recognize what thus obtained, surely the far-more-officially educated members of the aristocracy could do likewise, especially those who served in the analytical branches of the national  secret-police forces, typically advised by Original (N.S.D.A.P.) Nazi war criminals. It is therefore highly probable the Vigilante War was agitated from somewhere on high -- and quite possibly commanded from the same level. The jargon of the anti-commune vigilantes identified them as fanatical Christian fundamentalists, their mentality that of the southern "Saturday Night Men's Bible Study Class," aka the Ku Klux Klan, metastasized throughout the nation.  And we already know the ruling class, having failed to nazify the nation via the 1933 Bankers' Plot, began in 1938 to co-opt white protestant fundamentalism as its future sturmabteilung. Thus the great likelihood the anti-Back-to-the-Land-Movement decrees I photographed on the reader-board of a Western Washington church originated from the same venomously nazi sources. "God Hate Hippies" was already a national proclamation; "Organic Is Satanic" and "Environmental Means Of The Devil" were merely the next logical iterations in the methodical weaponization of the fundamentalists' lynch-mob hatefulness. And that dreadful ruin I explored in 1978 --  a shattered Buddha, a cast-off sandal, a faded black silken slip with an East Coast label, a sodden, moldering pile of books obviously hurled from adjacent shelves, The Whole Earth Catalog shredded dead center by a close-range shotgun blast, Kahlil Gibran ripped apart at the spine -- is an unforgettable example of its intended outcome. Thus too the destruction of "Dancer" and all its source material, the aforementioned reader-board photos included; the tip of that particular dagger, which will pain my heart until it beats no more, is the undeniable message conveyed by the fact the fire was ignited at the exact moment I was meeting with Cicely Nichols, the book-editor friend who -- believing the manuscript potentially "the most influential work of the 20th Century" --  had pledged to mother it to mainstream publication. 

Cicely died of cancer in 2008. Perhaps curiously, though I often photographed her -- she regarded one of those pictures as the best portrait anyone ever made of her -- it is not her I see when I reflect on how the burning of "Dancer" was perhaps the final chapter in the destruction of the Counterculture and the suppression of its genuinely revolutionary significance. It is instead a total stranger, the young white woman whose image emerged in my mental vision as I examined that faded black slip I found in the wreckage of her Back-to-the-Land dream. I do not know whether she is a creation of my imagination or the photographically accurate product of an archiving process and mechanism of communication we have yet to discover. But my brain-cells have borne her  portrait since that moment in 1978, and it is always the same:  she crouches in midnight darkness on the grassy shoulder of a two-lane blacktop rural road; I see her only in glimpses  illuminated by the lights of passing vehicles. She has hooded and cloaked herself with an olive-drab wool army blanket, and she clutches it tightly in  desperate hope of concealing the bruised nakedness I somehow know is beneath its itchy comfort. She trembles; her face is Modigliani beautiful, but now it is rouged  with dust and streaked with tears; her nose has bled; her upper lip is split; her eyes are like windows emptied by disaster; her mouth gapes like the doorway that summoned me to the corpse of her aspirations;  she is the Goddess as addressed by Tim Buckley in “Phantasmagoria in Two,”: “If you tell me of all the pain you've had/ I'll never smile again”; for a dreadful instant I know her anguish as the personification of Edvard Munch's Scream.

And as always, as it has been from the moment I departed that roadside ruin, I hear her cry out to me: “O do not let our love be lost. O please...”

I have hitherto remained silent, and in my silence, her plea has become an albatross about my neck.  But now I answer:

"Yes," I say; "yes I will be your witness, yes until this land is healed of its anguish, yes until the time be ours again. Yes. Your witness. Yes."

 

--LB/28 May 2010 (revised 29 December 2011 and completed 18 August 2023) 

 

(-30-)

 


We of the Ever-More-Destitute 99.9% Are Ever-More-Obviously Ruled by History's Greediest, Most Cunning Tyrants, which Ever-More-Undeniably Defines the Imperial US as Our Planet's Ultimate 'Shithole Country'

 (But let us first contemplate the Mother our survival commands us to defend; may Her radiance empower us to forever dispel the patriarchal darkness.)   

IMG_20230304_135802_103Photograph by KD ©2023: from a work-in-progress, an unabashedly worshipful embrace of our Mother Earth.

******************

I CANNOT REMEMBER, in all the decades I've followed such matters, a more relentlessly disturbing -- and not infrequently terrifying -- outpouring of news reports, whether from within the USian imperial homeland and its European colonies or from an oft-provoked Russian Federation that appears increasingly on the brink of precisely the sort of internal chaos that could make a world-ending, human-species-exterminating thermonuclear apocalypse unavoidable.

Meanwhile political conditions here in the Disunited States have deteriorated to such a depth of vindictively inflicted hopelessness that Hitler Wannabe Donald Trump's infamous characterization of non-white nations as "shithole countries" unquestionably now applies at least as accurately to the alleged "land of the free," wherein working-class existence is ever-more-obviously defined by a methodically engineered and maliciously imposed regime of  steadily intensifying socioeconomic and political oppression. Thus our tragically afflicted nation becomes a toxic variant of  the "rough beast, its hour come round at last" foretold by William Butler Yeats in "The Second Coming," revealing itself to be a relentlessly sadistic remake of Caligula’s Rome, Marie Antoinette’s France and Nicholas II’s Russia in which bottomless moral imbecility and irremediable corruption grant an infinitely evil aristocracy the absolute freedom to do whatever it goddamn well pleases to any and all of the rest of us.

Here – each of these reports chosen specifically for the fact it has seemingly managed to escape the ever-more-oppressive USian censorship apparatus – are 13 examples of the atrocities we now accept as the defining aspects of our daily routine, the most recent afflictions in an ever-metastasizing plague of horrors that in a just and mindful world would have long ago provoked revolution:

Though the case is admittedly mostly circumstantial, it cannot be said too often that 90 years of evidence proves far beyond judicially required certainty our plight dates from the 1933 Bankers' Plot, the collaborative effort in which the Wall Street aristocrats conspired with Hitler and Mussolini to nazify the nation into what their genetic and/or ideological descendants have made it today, the de facto Fourth Reich, the ultimate model of patriarchy as a theocratically brain-policed slave state, the global arsenal for terminal apocalypse and the ecogenocidally misogynistic reduction of our Mother Earth back to a bug planet.

*****

From the Comment Threads of Other Websites:

As cited above, on Skyrocketing State Terror in the Age of Counterterrorism.

Thank you, Mr. Gould-Wartofsky and LA Progressive, for this superbly analytical report. Meanwhile those who claim there is anything genuinely "leftist" about the present-day "Democratic" (sic) Party -- which in post-JFK operational truth has repeatedly proven itself to be nothing more than the Fifth Column of the "Republican" (sic) Christonazi/Neoconfederate Party -- are either tragically ignorant of genuinely leftist ideologies or are obediently parroting a Trumpite Big Lie.

***

As cited above, on   Supreme Court strikes down Biden’s partial student loan forgiveness plan, 43 million borrowers denied debt relief.

Predictably, Biden the Beguiler's intentionally fraudulent pledge of student-loan debt relief has proven itself yet another classic example of "change we can believe in" -- the most malevolent Big Lie ever fed the terrifyingly gullible USian electorate.

The pivotal, ultimately damning fact in this ongoing charade -- in which the "Democratic" (sic) Party desperately seeks to maintain its ever-more-transparent disguise as something other than the "Republican" (sic) Christonazi/Neoconfederate Party's Fifth Column -- is there is no possible way even the most delusional of the Beguiler's advisors could have imagined the Christonazi cabal that now tyrannizes the nation via the Supreme Court would let any student-debt-relief plan stand. 

Precisely as Comrade Grey points out, the Beguiler ensured  the Christonazis had -- and have -- "the best conditions for them to block the program," which they will obviously continue to exploit to maximum ruling class advantage.

At least as important as the financial considerations cited by Sebouh80 is the political fact any truly effective debt relief would be tantamount to manumission from the lifetime wage slavery that effectively prohibits any and all meaningful anti-capitalist resistance by the debtors. It does so by the constant threat of retaliatory job loss underscored by the fact student loans cannot be discharged via bankruptcy.

This method of prohibiting any such activism, which dates to the Johnson and Nixon regimes' efforts to suppress opposition to the Southeast Asian War, is in fact the original, underlying purpose of runaway higher education costs.

***

Wisconsin’s “Democratic” (sic) Governor Signed Largest Private School Voucher Boost in 30 Years

This is merely additional (irrefutable) proof the post-JFK "Democratic" (sic) Party is nothing more than the Fifth Column of the "Republican" (sic) Christonazi/Neoconfederate Party.

(Don't forget it was Wisconsin also spawned Sen. Joseph McCarthy, purgemaster of the c. '50s-'60s persecution not only of Communists but -- in truth -- anyone whose politics were to the left of fascism, all intellectuals especially included.)

***

“Twitter Files” Journalist Matt Taibbi Claims IRS and FBI Retaliation

How many times must it be said? The USian "mainstream media" propaganda machine -- social media included -- is the world's first privately owned, for-maximum-profit version of Josef Goebbels' Reich Ministry of Public Enlightenment and Propaganda.

And exactly like the Third Reich's Reichsministerium für Volksaufklärung und Propaganda (RMVP), its present-day descendant in the Nazi-war-criminal abetted de facto Fourth Reich is ultimately under the command-and-control of the respective nation's secret police, in each instance weaponized to serve the infinite evil of the ruling tyrants.

***

Of Course Greta Met with Zelinsky

I wonder if Ms. Thunberg realizes the tragic extent to which she has been co-opted by the USian imperial brain-police apparatus -- or if she does not, how she will respond when she awakens to the bitter truth of our now-eternal powerlessness. (Because I have enormous respect for her passion, I see her as an innocent in the same way we of the old '60s Counterculture were innocents, smug [and therefore utterly vulnerable] in the foolish belief our righteousness protected us from contamination by the Infinite Evil that has threatened the world since the advent of patriarchy and which -- with the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki -- achieved the terminally misogynistic ecogenocidal omnipotence over our Mother Earth and all her children that was always the patriarchs' ultimately apocalyptic purpose.)

***

5 Elements of Fascism and Their Exact Expression in Trump, the White Christian Nationalist Movement He Leads and the “Republican” (sic) Christonazi/Neoconfederate Party He Rules

With respect to Mr. Reich -- he is definitely cognizant of the threat implicit in today's "Republican" (sic) Christonazi/Neoconfederate Party -- I believe he errs in labeling its ecogenocidal toxicity "fascism." Instead -- especially given the admiration today's so-called "Republicans" express for Hitler -- it is clearly an USian variety of nazism (lower-case "n") -- particularly given its notion of Western-European ancestry/non-Jewish whites as the planet's master-race. There is also the fact it has been credibly reported Trump's favorite book is Mein Kampf -- reports surely confirmed by how the strategies and tactics employed not only by Trump but also by his rivals within the party's dominant like-minded faction are obviously so derived. In this context, it seems to me a grave downplaying of the threat to call our adversaries and their lethal intent as anything other than nazis and nazification.

***

Cormac McCarthy (1933-2023): Chronicler of American carnage

I knew McCarthy in East Tennessee at the University of Tennessee c. 1959 and c. 1962-1964 while he was living in the Sevier County back country and writing The Orchard Keeper.

Though nominally he denounced any and all intellectually focused  conversation as mere "holding forth," in what I recall as our one genuinely "serious" chat, he repeatedly and emphatically cited Rachel Carson's Silent Spring as the most important (and most infinitely damning) text  our species would ever publish. When I replied that Carson's disclosures might be for what was then called the conservation movement what Uncle Tom's Cabin had been to abolitionism,  he  said that could never happen because our species was too pridefully ignorant and too sociopathically self-obsessed.

Point being, if we are to understand his extreme negativity -- which most assuredly is not to justify it -- I believe we have to look at Carson's influence (which has since morphed into the ruling-class-environmentalists' academic  demand for exterminating 90 percent of the working class population), and the fact that concurrent with the publication of Silent Spring, the Tennessee Valley Authority, his father's pride and joy (and my own father's favorite, sometimes tears-in-his-eyes example of beneficent socialism), TVA was already under relentlessly savage attack from the Neoconfederate and proto-Christonazi right. Meanwhile the "Democratic" (sic) Party's alleged efforts to defend and preserve TVA -- especially after the coup of 22 November 1963 -- were ever-more-obviously nothing but charades.

Utterly deprived of humanitarian resources by Nazi-war-criminal-abetted capitalist   censorship, terrorism and weaponization of religion, McCarthy's work thus exemplifies the only aesthetic tolerable to the USian ruling class. 

Afterthoughts: (1)-I should have added that McCarthy’s apocalyptic negativity – albeit far more lyrically expressed than the prideful ignorance and methodically shrunken vocabulary of the Moronic Majority nominally permit– is precisely the helplessly subjugated, ever-more-forcibly conditioned hopelessness by which our self-anointed divine-right masters seek to guarantee no one will ever again dare rise up to challenge their ecogenocidal patriarchal omnipotence; (2)-While the bourgeois environmentalists demand for extermination of 90 percent of the global working class has since been trivialized as a right-wing conspiracy theory, it is in fact anything but. See for example the full text of one of Eric Pianka's speeches and the accompanying commentary as cited by Wikipedia, here. There is also the fact a few of the wealthier students at Huxley College, Western Washington State University's  environmental-science school, were already openly advocating such a final solution c. 1982-83, when I was living in Bellingham. (3)-I err in attributing the call for genocidal reduction of the 99.9 Percent exclusively to the influence of Silent Spring; Carson’s work is actually one of two such goads. The other is The Population Bomb, by Paul and Anne Ehrlich, which was published in 1968. A third factor is of course the sneering, Marie-Antoinette-caliber contempt with which the USian aristocracy – the academic elite most assuredly included – regards the 99.9 Percent, particularly our caste-sisters and caste-brothers who lack college degrees and/or work in fields wherein higher education is not required.

LB/30 June-2 July 2023

-30-

      


New Cellphone-Friendly Format; New Approach; My Promise I'll No Longer Resist Writing About Politics

FIRST, MY APOLOGY FOR AN UNAPOLOGETIC CONCLUSION: As regular readers know, I have struggled for some time – years, actually – with my desire to move this blog “beyond” politics, with the explanation for my sarcasm quotes in this passage's concluding paragraph. I was motivated by the psychological nausea inflicted by the fact today’s politics are overwhelmingly those of the relentless capitalism-inflicted apocalypse, utterly hopeless and therefore infinitely depressing, a condition for which I had hoped to evolve textual and photographic antidotes for myself that would also serve those of you who regularly read this blog.

But now at long last I realize there are three reasons I cannot – indeed could never – do as I wanted. Each is existential. One is that a political journalist – no more, no less – is what I am. As a member of the working press, politics was what I thought about and wrote about most often. Two is that in the privacy of my own thoughts, and sometimes in revealing conversations with lovers or closest friends, I admitted I conceived of politics in the broadest possible socioeconomic sense, as for viewing crime as the consequences both of our national ethos of self-obsessed of moral imbecility and of the desperate poverty resulting from the deliberately murderous systemic malfeasance that ultimately defines capitalism as a form of nazism. By my late 20s I had come to recognize capitalism as the direct offspring of patriarchy, which in turn I had come to recognize as our species’ methodically ecogenocidal war against our Mother Earth, thus a suicide pact – and thus too an ultimately unnatural act, the one truly mortal sin that not only dooms us all but seeks to exterminate all other life (and even the possibility of life) as well. Three – of course (and with heartfelt thanks both to my Marxian father and the maternal aunt who was mindful both spiritually and intellectually) – is that I was long ago awakened to the necessity of not just socioeconomic revolution but metaphysical and aesthetic revolution as well. Though as a member of the working press what I most often wrote about was not the disease of patriarchy but immediate examples of its diverse symptoms, I realize now I have somehow been granted the freedom to do both simultaneously -- that is, to put the symptoms in their proper context (which was the ultimate purpose of the photographic and textual revelations of anti-patriarchal rebellion that were the conceptual backbone of the burned and forever-lost “Glimpses of a Pale Dancer”) -- and that I have been working toward an analogous clarification-of-post-fire-purpose throughout a retirement that at age 83 has already extended, seemingly as if by magick, far longer than ever I expected to live.

While the thinking outlined above began in my childhood, its present form owes a great deal to the Gaia Hypothesis, which restates in scientific terms the core belief of our pre-patriarchal ancestors and cousins, amongst them the First Nations peoples, that our planet is herself a living being, “conscious and self-regulating.” Thus I have come to recognize patriarchy as total war against all being and the present USian plague of mass shootings not only as a microcosm of the Empire’s definitively nazi policy of massive retaliation, but – exactly as in Islamic suicide bombings – a microcosmic fulfillment of patriarchy’s terminal misogyny, its intent to assert its alleged supremacy of male over female by literally destroying anything and everything born of Nature. Indeed, the patriarchal intent of destroying the planet to “save” it is ever-more-evident in our Masters’ refusal to act against self-induced terminal climate change.

Which brings us to my promised explanation of the sarcasm quotes around “beyond”: in this darkest of all human ages, there is literally nothing for us, whether as individuals or as a species, “beyond” the mandate for responding to the apocalyptic threat posed by patriarchy. Since politics is either the mechanism by which we rescue ourselves and ensure our species’ survival or the weapon by which we destroy all that is within reach – the notion of anything “beyond” politics is as absurd as the medieval notion of transforming lead into gold. More to the point, now that mere survival has thus become a form of revolutionary defiance, politics is the pivot upon which we live or die, about which I shall henceforth write without apology for anything save the limitations of my own vision.

**********

FORMAT NOTE: I have used Typepad’s catalogue of formats to redesign Dispatches to accommodate reception by cell-phone users. This will transform previously published headlines into text that sometimes either overflows its original spacing or leaves great voids in it and does likewise with previously published photographs, flaws that are anathema to me as a former (award-winning) news-and-picture editor, though after a long delay I have come to accept the resultant graphic ugliness as an unavoidable surrender to present-day technology essential for increased readership.

**********

THREE COMMENT-THREAD POSTS FROM OTHER WEBSITES:

On the debt-limit crisis (and why I am so utterly terrified of its looming consequences): We should fear a “compromise” that sells out seniors, kids, and the disabled.

I am 83 years old, a mostly retired, sometimes award-winning print journalist whose newspaper career began at age 16 in 1956. Since the economic debacle of 2008-2009, which cost me nearly 70 percent of my annual income and forced me into bankruptcy, my sole source of pay has been Social Security.

The most telling lesson of my career is therefore the certain knowledge all USian politicians -- whether members of the "Democratic" (sic) Party or of the "Republican" (sic) Christonazi/Neoconfederate Party -- are slavishly obedient puppets of the plutocracy, wholly owned and controlled by that tiny cabal of obscenely wealthy, fanatically neoliberal aristocrats who rule the United States and its global Empire with the same morally imbecilic omnipotence that hitherto defined only history's most notorious tyrants.

Their core principle -- here stated in the English translation of its original assertion in Hitler's Mein Kampf -- is that anyone too impoverished or disabled to thrive under capitalism is "life unworthy of life." Thus the only real distinction between the Democrats and the Republicans is the extent to which the former are infinitely more skilled at deceiving the Moronic Majority that functions as the national electorate. Thus too neoliberal "austerity," the slow-motion genocide by which our Masters have replaced death camps.

In fact the present crisis is but a repetition of recent history. Barack the Betrayer -- who campaigned successfully on "change we can believe in," the most ruinously brazen lie ever fed the Moronic Majority -- conspired with the Republicans to savage food stamps in 2011, using a carefully choreographed debt-limit fight to disguise the treachery of the "Democratic" (sic) Party, afterward lying to the public he had "saved" food stamps even as he radically cut food stamps for singles and elderly people, slashing my monthly allocation from $130 to $16.

Today's bitterly damning truth is the Democrats refused to raise the debt limit when they had the votes to do so. In other words. they deliberately engineered the present crisis by handing the Christonazis and Neoconfederates the tools to compel whatever socioeconomic savagery our Masters mandate. Despite his lies, Biden the Beguiler is obviously using the same strategy and tactics his predecessor the Betrayer employed.

Thus the political harlots who cater to our Masters' every plutocratic whim cunningly facilitate ever-worsening tyranny even as they dupe the Moronic Majority by preserving the Big Lie -- and that is precisely what it is -- of a troubled but nevertheless still functional democratic republic.

While I have no idea how deliberately murderous the looming socioeconomic savagery will be, experience tells me it will indeed be another step in the .01 Percent's effort to reduce the numbers of the 99.9 Percent, which means it will be as genocidal as our Masters believe they can achieve without sparking actual revolution.

Meanwhile my gratitude to Mr. Eskow for daring tell the truth, and my thanks to LAP for daring publish it.

*****

Ukrainian attack on Kremlin is a criminal provocation

Whether the drone-bombing of the Kremlin is as claimed by the Ukrainians or the Russians, its ultimate message is, again, that the global ruling class believes itself well-enough bunkered to survive not only a chemical, biological and thermonuclear apocalypse but the decade or so of nuclear winter that's bound to follow it.

And given the ongoing ruling-class refusal to take meaningful action against global warming, it is entirely possible our Masters see nuclear winter as the final solution to that problem too.

Meanwhile turncoat Putin's restoration of Russian Orthodoxy is methodically returning the former Union of Soviet Socialist Republics to Tsarist tyranny, even as the USian Empire -- no doubt following the advice of the legions of Original (N.S.D.A.P.) Nazi war criminals it embraced as comrades-at-arms during and after the final year of World War II -- employs a Jewish puppet to re-nazify the Ukraine.

Exactly as Comrade Zaremba says in her comment, "This attack could get us all killed" -- as in the extermination of the entire global working class and the destruction of Earth as a habitable planet.

*****

Forest Defenders Appear For Preliminary Hearings

Actually -- this in supportive response to mwildfire -- Atlanta is infinitely more malevolent (and therefore infinitely more terrifying) than "an outpost of the Third Reich"; it is instead an embryo of the de facto Fourth Reich, the USian Empire, advised into being c. 1944-1968 by the legions of Nazi war criminals gleefully adopted from the defeated Third Reich and secretly resurrected to far greater ecogenocidal murderousness by the United States government and its capitalist owners.

So advised, the Empire's owners and their governmental vassals have since granted themselves irreversible omnipotence by fully weaponizing technology to fulfill their intent of "full-spectrum dominance" -- conquest of the entire world followed by universal zero-tolerance tyranny enforced by inescapable total surveillance. Their ethos is bottomless sadism and smirking moral imbecility. They will co-opt and exploit all human knowledge, either to fulfill Hitler's dream of subjugating all the peoples of the world or to fulfill the global version of Hitler's final stated wish, for which google Hitler's Nero decree and last will. Thus -- proclaiming of our world as they did of a village in Vietnam, "we had to destroy it to save it" -- they will exterminate our species and reduce our Mother Earth back to a bug planet rather than suffer genuine defeat.

That, my comrades, is the true unmitigated horror of our present circumstances, and that is what the "full-spectrum dominance" of the oppression that is ever-more-appallingly evident in Atlanta should be telling us. But -- alas and to our eventual doom -- far too many of us yet have our heads up that dark and smelly place I dast not mention lest this entire comment be censored.

************

SURPRISE, SURPRISE: The New York Times Publishes My Correction:

For those who’ve already spent their non-subscriber limit of 10 stories per month or otherwise cannot get past the NYT paywall:

All the four questions are from multiple-choice eighth-grade history tests. The question I addressed is, “Which of the following changes took place in Southern states immediately after the Civil War?”

The choices are:

(1)-Access to education became more available to African American people.

(2)-Most African Americans quickly switched from agricultural work to employment in manufacturing.

(3)-African American women were given the right to vote.

(4)-State governments were required to have African American people in legislative and executive offices.

Though I recognized options 1 and 4 were each correct, I answered option 4 as the more important – and my answer was marked wrong. According to The Times, the only correct answer was option 1.

Hence my comment and the comment in response:

Given my background in history -- a near-lifelong interest and a major part of my interdisciplinary BA -- I would debate the stated correct answer on the history question about the results of the Civil War. While it is indeed true the end of slavery enabled African-Americans legal access to education, it is also true the presence of federal troops throughout the secessionist states compelled the acceptance of African-Americans elected to local, state and federal government. (And of course it is equally true that by withdrawing federal troops in 1877, the U.S. government tacitly endorsed the re-emergence of the genocidal white supremacy that methodically purged African-Americans from the political system and radically curtailed their access to education.)

Loren Bliss (Tacoma, May 3)

(42 recommended)

In response:

@Loren Bliss my first thought was where were these black children going to school in 1866. My own state of Florida had no constitutional requirement for providing education until 1868 and we didn’t fully integrate until 1970. We did have black representation in congress during reconstruction though.

Alexander (Sunshine State, May 3)

(5 recommended)

As one of my Tacoma comrades said in response, “Good show! No wonder most USians are so ignorant about history. The media continues to peddle fables.”

**********

FICTION, MAYBE AS PROPHECY, working-titled “A Thing So Simple and So Huge,” a first draft of something, of course subject to constant revision:

Source of title:

And when the sand was gone and the time arrived
In the naked dawn only a few survived
And in attempts to understand a thing so simple and so huge
Believed that they were meant to live after the deluge

– Jackson Browne, “Before the Deluge

***

THE STORY-KEEPER was awakened by a frighteningly improbable clamor of ravens. His name was Matthew Drusillason; he was a black-bearded, brown-skinned, olive-eyed  schoolteacher, a student of theocracy-forbidden subjects, a refugee from  the religious wars that yet raged beyond the Dead Lands. Three years ago he had been the sole survivor of a badly crewed sailing vessel fatally overcrowded with desperately hopeful emigrant escapees, a leaky, rot-weakened coaster storm-sunk amidst the always-treacherous rip-tides  of the  Sailish Sea. The Potlatch People had found him dying on Sanamo Island's Eastward Beach, and when he confessed to them his bewildered astonishment at having been borne  to the shallows by a pod of dolphins, they had nursed him back to health with their native medicines and afterward, relishing his unapologetically truthful stories of the tyrannies that characterized Before, they had adopted him both as a tribal member and as the keeper of the newest episodes of their struggle for survival in the relentlessly deadly wake of the Before's attempted murder of the formerly vengeful but now-gradually recovering  Mother Earth. His adoption was 14 moons ago; since then, guided by Potlatch  teachers, he had learned much of the locale's plants and animals,  and for a moment or two, knowing ravens do not ordinarily transform the late-night skies with cacophonies of rage, he thought he was dreaming.  But now he realized he was fully awake and the avian uproar he first believed imaginary was in fact happening in reality, and it was occurring at such uncanny loudness it seemed each of the thousand or so ravens he knew dwelt in the island's coniferous forest had taken wing in gratingly loquacious protest. Perhaps he had slept through an earthquake. Perhaps a quake was looming. Perhaps the volcano they called KomaKulsh was again erupting or was about to explode as she was said to have done three decades past. Perhaps a giant tsunami had flooded past the Sailish Sea's mountainous barriers and  was coming to drown Sanamo and obliterate all traces of its residents’ already unlikely survival. Ravens, he had learned, are magickal; they are also among the Earth Mother's chosen messengers; they would know of such events long before humans awakened to the dangers. Troubled by an ever-more-compelling sense of incipient disaster, a seasoned veteran of many post-Before horrors and thus haunted by a looming sense of more potentially terminal possibilities than he could envision, Matthew rolled out of his bed, silently cursed the surprising coldness of the early-autumn air, rebuked himself for not having fed an overnight-sized log into the stone fireplace, seized one of the three cherished red wool Before blankets that had warmed his slumber, wrapped his naked flesh against the now-presumed chill of the Fifth Hinge, stepped barefoot onto the  stones of the cabin porch and thence into the yet chillier dew-damp grass as the corvid clamor continued and yes grew louder, more insistent, more alarmed and therefore more alarming. The swooping, soaring birds had risen in such numbers they reduced the overhead starlight to fast flickers and darted ominously eerie black silhouettes across the round yellow face of the Three Sisters Moon seasonably low and already sinking beyond her eighth-lunation zenith in the southern sky. He had never seen its like, not even in the vast regional musterings of carrion birds that cleansed the post-apocalyptic battlefields of their reeking gore and stripped to bare-bone heaps of weathering skulls the mounds of severed heads that marked the territorial borders of the warring states beyond the Dead Lands. 

Fifty yards from the closely adzed and gray-mud-chinked cedar-log walls of Matthew’s cabin and the clustered, nearly identical dwellings of his immediate neighbors, his fellow Sanamo dwellers were hastily gathering in the village Round, children, adolescents and adults alike, most of the adolescents and adults already visibly armed, all gazing skyward in fearful bewilderment, their upturned faces dimly silhouetted against the slowly waning flicker of the Thanksfire they had kindled to greet the rising moon seven sand-glasses earlier. The Three-Sisters Harvest would begin at dawn today; that’s why the celebration had not continued until sunrise. But why these outraged ravens? What was so dreadfully amiss? No doubt gray-haired Wanda Wolfwise, the Potlatch People’s eldest teacher and the leader of this small band of racially indistinct human survivors, would soon arrive to interpret the ravens' message and – or so Matthew and his gathered neighbors dearly hoped – help them all discern their best options. Now knowing his presence both as story-keeper and warrior was essential, he hastened back inside, exchanged blanket for early-autumn buckskins and elk-hide moccasins, belted on pistols and throwing axe, shrugged into his boomer’s bag, grasped the ancient but meticulously cared-for Before rifle he had been given by the elders as an adoption gift, lifted it off its wooden bedside pegs,  donned his woven-reed hat and strode to join his neighbors at the Round. By now nearly everyone of fighting age who dwelt on the island, 203 adults and adolescents, had mustered, bringing their younger children to the safety of the cedar-log parenting hall as the caw, caw, caw continued  to fill the night sky, seeming even louder and more grating than before, its alarm so intrusive Wanda had brought a hastily improvised birch-bark megaphone to make herself heard above the din.

“It’s an invasion by rats,” she shouted. "Legions of rats swimming up from the south. Rats riding clusters of flotsam at least as wide as three adult armspans. The rats aboard the debris pushed toward us by as many more rats swimming. And when these rats exhaust themselves in the water, only a few drown; the rest change places with the riding rats. The South Shore Kayak Patrol spotted them, sent a lantern signal to the Shore Watchers, who sent a rider to me. Then the ravens started up. But the rats are still a glass away, which means thanks to our warriors and the ravens, we’ve just enough time to organize a defense. Everybody and all our dogs to the Southward Beach. Get ready to ignite the fire boats. Goddess knows what sickness these rats carry. Goddess help us keep them off our island.”

The ravens continued their enraged denunciations; the Potlatchers did as Wanda directed. Eleven family groups of five or six boomers and as many as 12 archers jogged along the packed-earth trail out past the seasonably red-leafed vine maples that grew like natural hedges around the village with its familial clusters of log cabins and its broad surrounding span of black-soil communal gardens bountifully pregnant with harvest-ready corn, beans and pumpkins. Moccasined feet padded a soft rhythm not unlike that of the previous evening's ceremonial drums. Then the joggers slowed to a quieter, more erratic pace, hiking with carefully placed feet down the trail's abruptly steep and hazardously rocky slope through an agedly high-branched stand of Douglas Fir to the Southward Beach, the boomers laden with spare ammunition for flintlock rifles already primed and loaded with trade-powder and bear-greased projectiles of scavenged lead home-cast from cherished Before molds and dependably deadly out to 300 yards, the archers laden with bundles of goose-feather-fletched, salvaged-iron-bladed arrows for their recurve bows, which were effective to only half the rifles' range but able to loose as many as 10 arrows to every boomer’s one painstakingly loaded round of powder and conical ball. The tide was in; small waves lapped softly on wetly gleaming moonlit pebbles; above the incessantly ranting riot of ravens the night sky suddenly flared with serpentine bands of bright green light; the Spirit Dance was reaching way further south than usual; another omen; the Dancers' message yet to be determined. Matthew was momentarily entranced, already thinking how he might describe what he was hearing and seeing and feeling, how he might later record the details of the astounding strangeness that had already occurred, how he might document it with his newly learned expertise in the Potlatchers' traditional mnemonic shorthand, blackberry ink on tanned buckskin...

(To [maybe] be continued, Muse inspiring. )

**********

LB/12 May 2023

-30-


The Long-Promised Eulogy for My Father, the Late Donald Read Bliss

1970 Portfolio (fire survivors) DRB-03 - Copy
Knoxville, August 1969, the last time I would see my father alive. Negative and print damaged in the 1983 arson fire but salvaged from the rubble a year later. (Tri-X at 800 ASA; 35mm Summicron on M4 Leica.) Photo by Loren Bliss © 2023.

*

THOUGH MY CHILDHOOD taught me to cherish solitude for its self-healing opportunities, it was not until the extended isolation imposed by the Covid quarantine had I time enough to sort the trauma of growing up in a savagely dysfunctional family -- wounds that had remained the psychological equivalents of open sores because I never earned enough money to pay the extortionist fees demanded by the few genuinely competent healers.

Nor is my plight in any way unique: history makes it clear the One Percenters who now and forever own all federal, state and local USian governments will never allow healthcare to be acknowledged as a human right; thus for as long as the USian Empire survives, its healthcare will remain what it is today, a privilege of wealth, its adequacy (or lack thereof) determined exclusively by one’s income.

But the extended hours of uninterrupted contemplation granted by the quarantine ironically exempted me from that intentionally genocidal tyranny. It also granted me a truly priceless gift of compassionate understanding, a series of realizations that leaves me no moral choice but to write the following eulogy to my father, a man I have come to sadly realize I spent most of my life profoundly misunderstanding.

Indeed I owe that man, the late Donald Read Bliss (4 July 1910-21 February 1971), both a deeply regretful apology and an equally heartfelt debt of gratitude.

I owe him the apology for misconstruing as rejection the stiff-upper-lip remoteness symptomatic of his own emotional anguish.

And at the very least I owe him thanks times eight:

  • for rescuing me from my murder-minded mother’s attempts at post-partum abortion;

  • for teaching me the observational skills and patience required for successful fresh-water fishing;

  • for exemplifying and teaching the observant mindfulness by which I would discover how to become as one with my surroundings whether urban, rural or oceanic;

  • for giving me a .22 target rifle, a Remington 521-T Junior Special, on my ninth Christmas and coaching me to share his expert-class skill with rifles and handguns;

  • for protecting me from Southron viciousness by paying for parochial schooling, grades five thru eight, until I -- a typically lustful 14-year-old male -- foolishly opted to attend a public Southron high school merely because I believed the public-school girls would be easier to seduce;1

  • for giving me my first three cameras, a Kodak Brownie Reflex, a Polaroid and an Agfa Press Miniature on my twelfth, thirteenth and sixteenth birthdays respectively, thereby inspiring my near-lifelong commitment to journalism;

  • for being the one and only family member courageous enough to back me in the violent aftermath of a scandalous false arrest, about which more below;

  • and ultimately for being the most learned, most empowering teacher I have known in all my nearly 83 years.

Technically my father was the first-generation son of wealthy immigrants. Though my paternal ancestors arrived here in 1629 or 1630 and became prosperous farmers in what is now Connecticut, they were expelled as Royalists in 1789. My father’s father, my paternal grandfather, was the late Amos Read Bliss (1860-1922), a prominent Canadian engineer who migrated to the United States with his wife the late Wilena Marion Dewar (1889-1961) in 1900 or so. His patented automotive dynamo was a pivotal invention in the development of the modern automobile, and he subsequently headed the Ford Motor Company design team that invented the electric starter.

My father thus was raised in what to me is unimaginable privilege, its magnitude symbolized by his twelfth, fourteenth and sixteenth birthday presents, respectively a horse, a 20-foot sailboat and an automobile. He received a classic British education in U.S. boarding schools and anticipated continuing his education at Montreal’s exclusive McGill University. His desire, he told me once, was to become a history professor. 

By his own admission, he had no notion of the horrors of working-class existence; he was utterly unprepared for the emotional shock imposed by the Crash of 1929, which soon found him delivering 100-pound sacks of coal -- one bag per shoulder -- to fireplace-heated walk-ups in the working-class tenements of Lowell, Massachusetts.

Later he worked as a mechanic at a Standard Oil facility in Boston, next as a carpenter, then as a project foreman in residential construction on Long Island. Eventually his managerial skills would secure him high-ranking executive positions with American Houses Incorporated, a New-Deal-related pioneer in the development of prefabricated buildings, after which his ever-more-diverse talents and Mensa-caliber intelligence would earn him rapid promotions from the federal War Production Board.

I cannot doubt it was the painful lessons of the early Depression years that prompted his subsequent embrace of Marxism, to the extent the most memorable music of my childhood was the Red Army Chorus on an all-Cyrillic,78-RPM album that included the rousing “Song of the Machine-gun Carts,” a piece since omitted from the official Soviet repertoire but resurrected by You-Tube, the initial footage eerily approximate to what my childhood internal vision pictured each time my father played it on our Victrola. Likewise favored was Paul Robeson’s Songs of Free Men, and I vividly remember my father explaining, in terms readily understandable by my four-year-old self, the meaning of the album-cover’s semi-abstract symbolism. That same year, my introduction to classical music was the 1939 RCA Victor Red Seal recording of Sergei Prokofiev’s Peter and the Wolf. Our family’s record collection also included the then-popular hit entitled “Stalin Wasn’t Stallin’,” the flip-side of which was entitled “Love Is Gonna Be Rationed,” each often part of my early childhood’s background music.

But when the U.S. began its slow-boiled-frog transition to the generic nazism of neoliberalism by its adoption of innumerable German Nazi war criminals as advisors and comrades-in-arms even before V-E Day, its earliest victims were those purged as prematurely anti-fascist, a condemnation-without-trial that cost my father the equivalent of a federal deputy regional directorship in 1947, ever after condemning him and all of us in his immediate family to marginal near-poverty even as it irremediably shaped my own closely parallel political thinking.

***

MY FATHER WAS among the most relentlessly honest persons I have ever known. Bound by a personal code based on the Shakespearean premise of “to thine own self be true...thou canst not be false to any man” and an almost medieval sense of honor inherited from his parents, his outspokenness often earned him naught but misunderstanding, my own included, an affliction for which I realized during quarantined contemplation I share no small measure of guilt.

In 1950 permanently exiled to the vindictively theocratic white-supremacist South -- and despite his quickly earned status there as a successful mortgage banker -- my father, my stepmother, my four younger half-sisters and I were often socially rejected as “white trash,” firstly because he was already twice divorced; secondly because he was considered a 1950s version of an intruding “Yankee carpetbagger”; thirdly because of my own sensationalized false arrest and night in the old Knox County Jail during an attempted ruling-class purge to rid the University of Tennessee and Knoxville in general of persons involved in the burgeoning Civil Rights Movement or at least peripheral to it and thus all deemed “troublemakers” and/or “outside agitators.”

It was this incident and my immediate, defiantly public embrace of civil rights activism that forever bridged the gap of mutual misunderstanding that had separated us since the familial crisis of 1945. Before 1945, we had been as fondly and comfortably close as any father and son might be.

One of my earliest memories is our mutual trip to view the wounded ocean-liner Normandie only hours before she capsized at the French Line pier in Manhattan on 9 February 1942; this was nearly two months before my second birthday, yet I vividly remember the flare of a welding torch within her starboard anchor-port, how she listed away from the dock and how the waterfront smelled there in the late-winter darkness.

Two years later, when we had access to rural areas in Virginia, my father often took me on long walks with him in the woods, carrying me piggy-back when I grew too tired to keep up. It was on one of those walks I fired my first live round, a shot from his .22 Harrington and Richardson target revolver, with him holding the piece as I aligned its sights, squeezed its trigger in accordance with his instructions and hit the tin can he had placed as a target against a red-clay bank maybe 10 yards distant.

Among the few remnants of my childhood that escaped the arson fire of 1983 is the unique valentine he air-mailed me in 1944, an artifact I have cherished and kept close-at-hand for as long as I can remember: “Dear Loren -- Inside is a picture of something that is almost as big and strong as my wish that you would be my Valentine!” Neatly printed and signed “Love Dad,” the “big and strong” is a photograph of a Norfolk and Western streamlined-steam passenger locomotive, to which my four-year-old hand later added crayon-curls of black smoke.

But after that dreadful 1945 Summer Solstice Eve, his fondness seemed to wane, so that by my teenage years, I had concluded he had forever distanced himself, a belief my hateful birthmother maliciously fostered at every opportunity. Meanwhile my father did nothing to alleviate my dismay: throughout my post-1945 boyhood and until about the time I turned 12, his most wounding pejoratives were to call me “goon boy” or to damn me for being “just like (my) mother” any time I displeased him.

I long suspected he feared I had inherited my birthmother’s penchant for sociopathic dishonesty and morally imbecilic, self-obsessed criminality. Also I felt he doubted my courage: he had boxed competitively in boarding school, but despite his boxing lessons, I loathed schoolyard fist-fighting and never became the triumphant brawler he said he was as a teen and young adult, never mind the fact he had given me enough skill to win about half of those encounters, teaching the bullies they would be hurt even if I lost the fight and thereby eventually making myself formidable enough to terminate the sadistic torment that characterized most of my public school years -- yet another reason I realize now I owe him a debt of gratitude.

But it was my defiant, unrelenting response to false arrest that finally bridged our always troubling distance and swept all his doubts away, and we began meeting for intensely personal conversations over after-work dinners, typically once every week at the S&W Cafeteria as long as I remained in Knoxville, at least once a month after I moved to Oak Ridge for a job at the daily newspaper there.

Nor will I ever forget how we outraged the homophobic Southrons with our spontaneously mutual hug at McGhee-Tyson air base when I arrived there for my final visit to Knoxville in 1969, the last time I would see him alive, when an assignment to write and photograph a report on the Southern Counterculture coincidentally corresponded with the wedding of a younger half-sister, Deborah, the firstborn of my father and stepmother.

It was during that visit I discovered we were each reading Robert Graves’ White Goddess. Nor was I surprised; at some point after my arrest -- I don’t remember exactly when, though I suspect it was during one of the aforementioned dinners -- my father had told me of an experience in the Maine woods during his 12th year that immediately reminded me of my own 12th-year encounter with otherness in the northern Michigan woods. He had been following a creek to its source, he said, when he discovered a place “where the springs sprayed water up out of the ground like fountains,” but he could never find it again, though he searched for it long afterward, and the experience itself haunted him all his life.

Years later, researching mythology for what would become the arson-destroyed “Glimpses of a Pale Dancer,” I discovered such fountains were anciently believed to be characteristic of the (extra-dimensional) realms of the goddess, much as summons by the mythical Birds of Rhiannon were described as eerily similar to my own haunting experience in Michigan.

Obviously -- though I regret we never acknowledged it to one another -- he was as fey as I; though “Bliss” is a decidedly English name, genetic testing has shown we are far more Celt than all else combined. Perhaps Yeats’ “Song of the Wandering Aengus,” here sung by the late Judy Collins, applied as much to him as it does to me.

Equally unforgettable in its tacit endorsement of my own Marxism is a long telephone conversation with him when I was back in Manhattan later in ‘69, a discussion of police brutality in which he thought-provokingly cited an Italian communist party statement reminding all Marxians that cops are themselves members of the working class, admittedly misguided but nevertheless yet viable candidates for recruitment.

However much my arrest and subsequent activism healed my relationship with my father, it was also devastatingly painful for my younger sisters, intensifying the Southron jeers of “white-trash” that had plagued them since infancy, gravely deepening the wounds that -- despite my aristocratically-born stepmother’s comforting responses -- my father’s boarding-school-limited parenting skills were never able to help sooth, much less heal. Though my conscience left me no alternative but civil rights activism, I nevertheless must share some measure of guilty responsibility for the fact it caused my sisters considerable grief from the ever-vindictive Southrons.

***

WHILE EVERY DIVORCE is the product of unresolvable conflict, my father’s preference for intelligent, articulate, adventurous lovers in an age when such women were routinely victimized by the misogynistic sadism of patriarchy and traumatized -- sometimes to madness -- invariably complicated his relationships, which often in conversations with me during his latter years he characterized as a quest for a woman “with whom (he) could share (his) naked soul.”

Paradoxically, like most men of his generation, he also believed that, once married, he owed his wife and whatever offspring they produced the same faithful and protective duty a ship’s captain owes his crew. From the perspective of those values -- another painful truth that did not become apparent to me until the therapeutic contemplation granted by the quarantine -- the potential for conflict with an independent-minded woman is undeniable.

Apart from a few mostly laudatory accounts of her fiercely proto-feminist independence, I know little of my father’s first wife, the late Barbara Barker Bliss, mother of my half-siblings the late Donald Jr., Jock and Joanne.

Of my father’s third and final wife, my stepmother, the late Virginia Hodges Bliss, formerly his executive secretary, a woman so skilled that in his absence she routinely supervised the

_______________________________________________________________

My stepmother and I Florida c. 1946

With my stepmother at the beach, Florida c. 1946. Photo by my father. ©Loren Bliss 2023.

_______________________________________________________________

 

war-effort factory of which he was manager, perhaps the most definitive statement I can make about her -- and thus indirectly about my father as well -- is that she was the absolute antithesis of the malicious stepmother we all know from children's tales and folklore. Indeed she was infinitely more motherly, loving and intellectually encouraging to me in the span of our first few months together than my birthmother had been during the first five and a quarter years of my existence, a powerful post-traumatic healing for which I remain more grateful than words can express. And her supportive fondness did not falter until she was tragically undone decades later by Huntington's Chorea, an unspeakably dreadful disease that turned her latter years into a nightmarish existence I would not wish on any living being. 

In stark contrast to my genuinely protective stepmother, my birthmother was always a fearsome creature. The late Marion Woodruff Fuller Bliss, she was artistically talented, brilliant, and in 1933 among Michigan State’s first three female graduates in urban planning and landscape architecture. But even in my infancy she had become, to me, what I now recognize as the living embodiment of abuse.

Her hatred became undeniable -- even to my toddler self -- after a Brooklyn butcher-shop incident midway in my second year.

Though I was a late talker -- I did not begin to speak until nearly the end of my first year -- but when at last I began to talk, it was almost always in complete, grammatically correct sentences, or so I’ve been told. If I did not know the proper name for something, I labeled it in accordance with its function; hence the exhaust pipe of my father’s black 1940 Ford became the “smoker”; likewise the beaks of the chickens New Yorkers raised in their rooftop Victory Gardens became their “peckers.”

In that era, shopping for meat and vegetables in the City was divided, as in Europe, between butcher shops and greengrocers. My birthmother, with me toddling along, had taken our monthly quota of ration stamps and gone to the butcher to purchase a chicken. My mother pointed to a beheaded, footless, plucked but otherwise intact chicken displayed in the shop’s refrigerated, glass-and-white-enamel counter-top; the butcher held the bird aloft for her approval, and my always-inquisitive self quietly asked “mother, where’s its pecker?”

She ignored me. Assuming she had not heard me over the background noise of conversations, elevated trains and street traffic, I repeated my question at slightly more volume.

Again she ignored me; other customers within hearing grinned and chuckled.

The third time -- still believing she had not heard me above the din -- I shouted: “MOTHER, WHERE’S IT’S PECKER.”

Now all the shop’s customers roared with laughter. Abandoning the chicken, my mother yanked me painfully by my right arm, fled the store, smacked me several times around my head and shoulders and promised much harsher punishment when my father returned from his Manhattan office that evening.

But when she told him the story and demanded he spank me, he not only refused to do so, but laughed harder and longer than I had ever before known him to laugh. Even decades later he could not tell that story without laughing.

As I would learn as a young adult, he also ridiculed her for being morbidly terrified of the judgment of strangers -- a characteristic that, as we shall see, she no doubt inherited from her parents.

A deliberate wounding she subsequently inflicted on both of us exemplifies the magnitude of her vengeful hatred. Temporarily abandoning me in my crib in our Queens apartment, she stormed into an American Houses executive meeting in the upper chambers of Manhattan’s General Electric Building, scattering official papers, hurling a drinking-water-filled pitcher against a wall, ruining with its splatter many pen-and-ink documents as she shrieked knowingly false accusations my father was having an affair with his then-secretary, the wife of an Army colonel not yet dispatched overseas.

(In truth his extra-long, sometimes-16-hour workdays were mandated by the war effort, as the entire firm was working overtime on emergency construction of military barracks throughout the nation.)

By then my father was the corporation’s acting vice-president for operations, and one of the purposes of the disrupted meeting had been officially confirming his appointment as such; hence my mother’s explosive tantrum was maliciously timed to inflict maximum ruin, as indeed it did: it convinced my father’s bosses his choice of wives proved him unfit for top-level executive positions, got him demoted to manager of a building-fabrication plant in Jacksonville, Florida, and got us all exiled to the former Confederacy, literally within a matter of days.

Not long after that I had my first encounter with the murderous hatred the Southrons are -- to this day (and as re-legitimized by Donald Trump) -- taught from childhood to harbor against anyone from the North. We lived in the exclusive and therefore gated St. Johns-River-waterfront Catherine’s Court apartment complex; playing in the sandbox of its locked playground, I was assaulted by a trio of older Southron children who decided I “talked funny” and took my obvious Northeastern accent as an excuse to murder me by burying my head in the sand; I was three; they were six and seven.

Though I fought back with all my strength, they were much bigger and stronger; they quickly overcame me, held me upside-down, dug the requisite-sized hole in the sand and buried my head in it. I survived only because Mary Alice Shotwell, a five-year-old northern-born apartment-complex neighbor with whom I’d become friends, defended me by attacking my assailants with a child-sized garden hoe and sent them fleeing homeward, bleeding and crying for their mothers. As I recall, her father was a U.S. Navy officer; in any case, he was one of my father’s close colleagues in the war effort.

Sometime in the spring of 1944, my father was transferred out of Jacksonville to run an even smaller American Houses plant in Roanoke, Virginia – which I realize now was another demotion, additional corporate retribution for the violent tantrum my birthmother had thrown in the Manhattan board room.

I still remember a part of the drive northward; sitting in the back seat of our black 1940 Ford, watching out the windows as the land gradually changed from Floridian flatness to rolling Appalachian foothills, I asked if we were going to a place with mountains. My father answered that indeed we were and complimented me on my observational skill and reasoning ability – even as my birthmother belittled me for daring ask such a question.

That autumn -- obviously my father was still trying to save their marriage -- we went on vacation with our new dog, a trained English Setter named Cocoa, to my maternal grandparents’ cottage on the South Branch of the Au Sable River in Northern (Lower) Michigan for a week of late-season small-game hunting with my maternal relatives.

At age four, I was of course required to remain indoors with the women, but I remember vividly the partridge and rabbits piled nightly on the front porch floor before they were gutted, skinned or plucked and cooked, and the deliciousness of the wild meat on which we feasted set my taste-buds on a woodland path I would follow until old-age disability ended that aspect of my journey.

I also remember crying bitterly at our departure for Roanoke -- grief I assume now was prompted by my realization the temporary charade of dispensation from my birthmother’s malice that had accompanied our vacation was itself ending, as indeed it was -- permanently.

***

NOT LONG AFTERWARD, my birthmother literally hurled me across our Roanoke kitchen, slammed me into the far wall, repeatedly slapped me with both hands and, when my father intervened, shrieked I had accused her of using a “feces” brush to baste a fish she was cooking in the oven; watching her preparations, I had merely asked her if she was going to baste the fish, using the “fishy brush” -- my term -- she had previously stated was only for that purpose.

Early in 1945, attending a private kindergarten in which I now realize my father had enrolled me as a workday protection against my birthmother’s escalating violence, I brought home a block-printing project that required slicing a raw potato in half, drawing designs on the open ends, cutting out enough material to raise the designs in bas-relief, dipping it in finger paint and transferring the design to a sheet of paper. Visually skilled beyond my years, in my mind’s eye I saw silhouettes of dogs, though for some reason I no longer remember, I chose blue as the color of the finger paint.

My birthmother provided me everything I needed including water-color paper, a large raw potato cut in halves, a pencil to draw the silhouettes on the potato-ends, a small paring knife to turn the silhouettes into printing surfaces and ample work-space covered with newspapers on our breakfast nook’s polished oak floor.

I sat down on the papers, picked up a potato-half and began drawing a childish canine figure on its bare end.

Nearly 78 years after the fact, it still hurts me to remember what happened next: my mother suddenly damned me as a hopelessly clumsy oaf who had wasted a rationed potato, snatched the potato out of my hand, flung it somewhere I don’t remember, dragged me off the newspapers, slapped me several times, kicked the newspapers into a wad, spilled the blue finger paint onto the now-unprotected floor and -- when my father returned from his day’s work -- blamed me for the resultant mess.

The kindergarten meanwhile had decided to celebrate 1945’s May Day in a Roanoke park with a children’s performance of Shakespeare's Midsummer Night’s Dream; I was chosen to be Puck, and the teachers asked my mother to make me an appropriate costume. She did, sewing from chocolate-brown cotton cloth a scalloped-bottom knee-length dress, tights and tasseled cap I immediately hated because it made me look like a girl. My father agreed with me, but my mother insisted I wear it.

I think it might have been during one of their arguments about my costume she hammered her fist onto our mahogany coffee table with such force the blow shattered its quarter-inch-thick glass top.

Ultimately she prevailed; I vaguely remember my father comforting me, assuring me I would only have to wear the despised costume for a couple of hours, and that by so doing I would minimize my mother’s ever-more-frequent outbursts of terrifyingly hateful rage.

Nevertheless, by this time, her animosity had become so obvious, my father was taking me to work with him whenever he could, often leaving me in the comfortingly protective care of my future stepmother.

Just after New Year’s Day of 1945, my birthmother tried to poison us both with spoiled vegetables she herself would not eat, severely sickening each of us for a half-dozen days, our bedridden respites periodically interrupted by vomiting and diarrhea.

Then, on the eerily frigid Summer Solstice Eve of 1945 -- at 32º Fahrenheit the coldest 21-22 June night ever recorded in Roanoke, Virginia -- she wrapped herself in her fur coat, pocketed a paring knife and sought to carry my half-naked, summer-pajama-clad self from our residence in the last house at the end of the paved portion of  Rosiland Avenue to the top of Mill Mountain, there “to meet god.’’ (The house still stands, looking nearly exactly as it did then, albeit renumbered 2927 after Rosiland Avenue's pavement was extended much further to accommodate additional dwellings.)

But my father arrived home unexpectedly early due to a canceled meeting, and when he intervened, my birthmother assaulted us both, her frenzy so hatefully violent it took all my father’s military-trained skill to disarm her and all his strength to restrain her. My mind’s eye still sees them wrestling on the living room floor, my father atop a writhing, hissing, snarling, drooling caricature of a human female, a shape-shifting creature turned suddenly reptilian and unspeakably terrifying, a lethally squirming predator who now arched her neck in hideously serpentine replications  of venomous strikes,  her gaping mouth slinging great gouts of frothy saliva as she repeatedly lunged to bite my father's face; failing that she gnawed and snapped at his dangling green tie, slobbering it dark as she snagged it with her teeth, spasmodically twitching to yank it tight enough to strangle him. But even as my father strained to hold her down, he somehow managed to lean back just far enough to deny her the fatal leverage she relentlessly sought.

Their epic battle seemed to last forever, and I witnessed every dreadful minute of it;  effectively paralyzed by fear, I huddled in the far corner of our living-room sofa; in the end it required six burly cops to strap my birthmother to a litter for transport to jail. She was imprisoned for a week, jailed until her mother, my maternal grandmother, came by train to fetch her home to Grand Rapids, Michigan. Meanwhile I had shrunk into a psychological numbness that endured for years afterward; my recollections of some of the conversations I had with my father in 1969 leaves me with the sorrowful suspicion he was so terribly hurt by the magnitude of betrayal, malicious deception and vindictive cunning implicit in my birthmother's explosive revelation of her hitherto-concealed but ever-afterward undeniably bottomless hatred of the male gender, his wounds  may never have fully healed.     

Also memorably, my grandmother greeted me not with affection but with the painfully chilly you-are-now-nothing-but-an-unwelcome-reminder-of-a-bad-time rejection that would ever-after define my relationship with all of my maternal kin save my birthmother’s older sister, my Aunt Alecia.

***

I YET HARBOR mixed emotions about the fact my father felt it was his gentlemanly obligation not to have my birthmother charged with attempted murder.

Nor have I words adequate to describe the relief I felt when my father and stepmother each promised I would never have to see her again -- a promise that, through no fault of their own, would be broken in only two years.

At home in Michigan with her parents, my birthmother continued violently expressing her hatefulness, first against her father, later against a niece whom my birthmother twice hurled down flights of stars for daring to defy her irrational demands. That niece was my Aunt Alecia’s daughter Pamela -- Alecia was herself a divorcee -- and in 1948, as my courageously protective aunt, she would become another of my genuine saviors.2

Meanwhile, my maternal grandparents -- paralyzed by their craven fear the scandal of an institutionalized daughter would hurt their more-than-adequate income -- refused to act against my increasingly violent mother until my aunt threatened public disclosure via the police and the criminal court. Thus my birthmother was secretly institutionalized for a year in a posh private asylum.

But her cowardly parents remained so frightened by the prospect of socioeconomic odium, they defied the stern advice of her psychiatrists, who wanted her confined for life as a dangerous psychotic. Her father employed his influence and considerable wealth to secure her release, conceal her history of malevolent behavior, suppress the record of her arrest in Roanoke, thereby facilitate a divorce-court decree granting her summer custody of me and -- horror of horrors -- enable her to resume the career as a Registered Nurse her parents had bought for her after she failed to achieve employment in her chosen field.

I will always wonder how many persons she might have murdered, especially given how many times she was fired during her subsequent years as an RN.

Citing my divorce-court-mandated interrogation by a Virginia state social-worker as proof -- a still-memorable encounter with a woman whose infinite coldness was utterly terrifying to my already traumatized five-year-old-self -- my birthmother sought to convince me my father had tried to abandon me in an orphanage: a claim I am sad to admit I believed for many years was true.

Her last act of vengeance toward us both was to deny me the funds to attend my father’s funeral -- this after she had again broken an oft-repeated but never fulfilled promise to help me pay my college expenses. Two days before my father’s death, I had left myself temporarily penniless by paying out-of-pocket all my spring quarter 1971 tuition and fees at Western Washington State College. Hence, citing her broken promise, I begged her for the money to attend the funeral.

Her response? “If god wants you to go, he’ll provide.”

She was particularly hateful to any woman with whom I was close. In 1961 she physically attacked my first wife, slapping Carolyn's face and yanking her waist-length hair until I forcefully intervened to stop her unprovoked assault.   In 1975 -- this after she surreptitiously obtained the names of several of my friends and colleagues and viciously harassed them by phone to compel my then-fiance Ann and me to cancel our long-planned vacation trip to New York City and instead detour to Grand Rapids -- she attempted to poison us both with spoiled chicken retrieved from garbage.

In the '61 and '75 incidents we were protected from her sadistic malevolence only by the intervention of my influential older half-brother Jock. The ‘75 incident also ended my final quest for matrimony; having met my birthmonster, the woman I’d contentedly lived with for nearly two years and planned to marry understandably decided she wanted nothing more to do with me or my family.

My birthmother’s final institutionalization occurred in the mid-1980s -- this after she was repeatedly caught hiding naked in the clothes dryers of the Grand Rapids senior-housing complex where she had rented her last apartment. Reportedly, she claimed her nakedness was necessary to enable her to conceal herself from “the Devil’s soul-catchers,” whom she believed were hunting her because she had failed to fulfill her end of a satanic pact.

So informed, I could not but wonder if herein lay the explanation for her attempt to murder me in 1945. While I most assuredly do not believe in the Devil, I am painfully aware of the global presence of absolute evil, which seems ever more the dominant force in today’s apocalypse-threatened world.

Thus I cannot escape the likelihood my birthmother believed her pregnancy was facilitated by satanic favor; that she intended its payment to be my own sacrificial death atop Roanoke’s Mill Mountain; that she believed her family’s wealth and influence would immunize her to punishment just as it had protected her from prosecution for innumerable lesser crimes (mostly theft, forgery and shoplifting); and that here was the most likely explanation both for the berserker-caliber frenzy with which she assaulted my father when he intervened – a rage so violently enormous it required, as I said, six Roanoke cops to subdue her for the trip to jail – and for her later abject terror of the supposed “soul-catchers.”

Nevertheless -- and despite the fact I am decidedly agnostic about all such matters -- the eerily unprecedented temperature-drop of that night seems to add to the associated events an eldritch element I cannot deny.

Be that as it may, when my birthmother died on 8 June 1995, I felt as if a great burden had been lifted from my life, indeed as if I had at long last been liberated from some hitherto-inescapable curse.

Not long afterward it came to me the ultimate definition of our relationship lay in the fact my birthmother never once told me she loved me. Instead she spoke of maternal love only in the third person, “your mother loves you,” as if she were speaking of some entirely different person, someone far removed from either of our lives.

The best evidence indicates my birthmother was a maliciously sadistic sociopath who -- beneath a carefully maintained veneer of upper-bourgeois heterosexual sociability -- hated all men, deliberately got pregnant to ensnare my father in a marriage she hoped would provide her with a cover to pursue her subsequently revealed lesbianism, and probably despised me from the moment she discovered she had borne a male infant.

I now of course know the violent denouement of that marriage -- for which as a child despised by his birthmother I characteristically blamed myself for entirely too many years -- was inevitable.

***

THOUGH MY BIRTHMOTHER had learned to weaponize the irrational expressions of her madness -- switching them on only when she felt the need to employ them as psychological truncheons to enforce her will, otherwise keeping them switched off and carefully maintaining a deliberately deceptive facade  of intelligent-woman normalcy -- even at age 83 I remain amazed by the extent to which she maliciously conned both my father and his mother, the feisty, independent-minded grandmother my siblings and I knew as Nana. She likewise conned my second wife Adrienne, whom she never met in person and with whom geography insured she communicated only by telephone and mail.

I am also astounded by the forgiveness my father displayed toward my birthmother’s ever-intensifying violence and hatefulness. When I finally dared ask him why -- this in 1969 during the last face-to-face conversation we would ever have -- he replied that honor and matrimonial vows demanded no less.

That is the sort of man he was: someone a trusted friend, the late Conrad Payne, memorably described to my 23-year-old self -- then fresh-out-of-jail and still profoundly skeptical of my father’s regard for me -- as “probably the best friend (I’ll) ever have.” Conrad and his pregnant wife Mary had been among those arrested, and in the aftermath had themselves become acquainted with my father. And I now know Conrad was absolutely correct in his judgment: my father was indeed the best friend -- that is, the most understanding and accepting friend -- I ever had. 

Flawed? Of course he was -- as are all of us raised under the ecogenocidal moral imbecility of patriarchy and its incipiently nazi capitalist derivatives. Sometimes hurtful toward those to whom he should have been most protective? Unquestionably.

But the truth is I loved him nevertheless, and I no longer question his love for me: else why would he have bid me farewell by a fleeting appearance at the foot of my bed as he lay dying three thousand miles away -- his spectral presence actually seen more clearly by the woman of Irish descent who was my lover at the time, and as well by my dog, who howled at his passing. Thus, until I am no more, and no doubt longer if there be afterlife, I shall sorely miss the steadily deepening bonds of friendship and mutual understanding that characterized our post-1963 relationship.

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1Given the wretched educational quality, white-supremacist bias and often-violent bullying that characterized that era’s Southron public schools, my decision to abandon the vastly superior quality of parochial education is one I will always deeply regret.

2I attended first and second grade at Jacksonville’s Norwood Elementary School, where reading was taught by the word-recognition method, and where I was socially promoted despite my seeming inability either to read or do basic arithmetic. But my Aunt Alecia -- by then a working artist with a growing reputation throughout the Middle West -- recognized my problem as dyslexia and in 1948 traded a piece of sculpture to a friend to buy me six weeks of summertime tutoring in phonics. The result was literally life-changing; by mid-third grade, I routinely tested as reading at a 12th-grade level. In other words, Alecia’s beneficence enabled my life as a journalist and lifelong scholar, for which I had the good sense to make a point of thanking her profusely many times in the late 1980s. Alecia DuRand (1908-1993) after her second marriage, she was the first woman in the U.S. to head a collegiate fine-arts department, and there is a two-year art scholarship in her name at the school that so employed her, Grand Rapids Community College.

 

LB/7 November 2022-25 March 2023; with minor revisions for clarity 10 August 2023.

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Capitalism=Nazism=Extinction; Who (or What) Is Killing Us?

W. Eugene Smith  beset by  Ansel Adams cultists  Seattle 1976W. Eugene Smith, the late world-class humanitarian photojournalist, in Seattle c. 1976. A  fanatical Ansel Adams cultist had just shouted both of  us down for attempting to discuss how the nation's then-skyrocketing inflation was locking lower-income people out of the technology required for professional-quality photography.  The critic, an obviously wealthy white male, damned us for  "attempting to politicize art" -- a nasty, morally imbecilic  response that drew applause from everyone else in the room -- astounding Mr. Smith, but again confirming  what I already knew to be Seattle's most definitive trait, an existential-nazi viciousness compounded by the most hateful, often violent xenophobia I have ever encountered.   

*****

A POTENTIAL BOSS once asked me why I outspokenly affirm the intellectual value of mythology, archaeology, history and sociology even as I vehemently damn the study of philosophy as nothing more than an obnoxiously esoteric form of  self-aggrandizing academic mental masturbation.

What I told him was the nuclear bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki had proven Moses, Jesus and Muhammad to be malevolent enablers of ecogenocidal self-destruction. The Bomb, I hypothesized, is the One Percent’s ultimate terror weapon; it is their declaration of permanent war against humanitarianism itself. It reduces the formal study of philosophy back to modern counterparts of its medieval irrelevance, debating the number of angels that might occupy the head of a pin.

Asked to elaborate, I said the only metaphysics the Bomb had not reduced to irrelevance were Zen, Taoism, its First Nations counterparts and the resurrected paganism growing out of the merger of the Gaia Hypothesis with the folk renaissance’s resurrection of pre-patriarchal liturgical fragments and Robert Graves’ scholarly propagation of matriarchy’s earth-centered consciousness.

I later learned my truthful responses cost me my role as a leading, obviously qualified supplicant for a better paying editorial job. But I answered with equal honesty when a fellow comment-thread-respondent on a Scheerpost essay asked what seemed to me a closely related  question: "Where was Marx wrong?"

While I wrote my answer pretty much off the top of my head, my passion for scholarship compelled me to began re-investigating my own conclusion. Several days of research cemented that hypothesis into Occam-Razored certainty the radiation sickness generated by the atomic terror-bombing of Japan must now be reckoned to include our loss -- conceivably forever -- of the rarely acknowledged but nevertheless vital existential optimism that has obviously motivated human achievement long before our species became recognizable as such.

I began writing this concluding installment of the intended three-part series accordingly.

But then all this work was destroyed by an allegedly "impossible" word-processing crash, and my failed attempts at reconstructing it from memory eventually forced the entire effort back to the proverbial drawing board. The result is the radically pared-down, apologetically tardy result you are reading now.

*****

MOST OF US know from experience our species’ survival requires the solidarity of positive mindfulness, which paradoxically includes the seemingly negative recognition of the worst that might happen countered by relentless determination to use our proven abilities to transcend whatever awfulness might otherwise prevail.

Such mindfulness is thus the diametrical opposite of Barack the Betrayer’s intentionally misleading proclamation of the "audacity of hope," an astoundingly brazen Big Lie intended to minimize the evil of subjugation by delusional redefinition of our cowardly acceptance of its atrocities as virtuous steps toward  "change we can believe in," the far more malignant Big Lie that is statistically proven the One Percent’s most effective weapon for reducing voter turnout.

Our resultant realization of the imbecility of hope -- our species’ loss of positive mindfulness -- is one of the foremost symptoms of this hitherto-undiagnosed complication of the radiation sickness the Bomb has inflicted on us all. Its agonies are infinitely worsened by the incurable gangrene of self-inflicted terminal climate change. But the Bomb not only robbed us all of our ancient ability to think our way out of ultimate crises; it filled the resultant void with the negative mindfulness of the death-camp, whether eternally or not remains to be seen.

*****

MARXISM’S IRREFUTABLY PROVEN socioeconomic projections are based on breakthrough scholarship that also brought about some of the earliest academic recognition of the matriarchal proto-communism that sustained our species through its first approximately 194,000 years.

Moreover, the earliest histories of Marxian theory point to the likelihood Karl Marx’s intent -- Frederich Engel’s too -- included some degree of formal restoration of our original nature-centered solidarity, hence the Marxian opposition to organized religion.1 That’s why I will always be perplexed by Marxism’s choice to ignore archaeology’s proof of the ecogenocidal, end-of-history violence of patriarchy’s endless war against Nature. Patriarchal invasion and conquest destroyed our earthly Eden, maliciously slandered its Gaian goddess as the source of all evil and began its deliberate reversal of human evolution by falsely re-branding our Mother Earth as our species’ mortal enemy. But Marxism chose to redefine these apocalyptic evils as essential stages of human development, unavoidable steps in an evolutionary process that made humanitarian socialism the historically inevitable liberation of the entire 99 Percent and thus eventually of all humanity.

In other words, Marxism’s one terminal error is its irrational belief in the Christian, ultimately patriarchal definition of progress, which the Cassandras of feminism have been desperately warning us for at least a century is the apocalyptic banishment of any and all commitment to humanitarian advancement.

It is in this context we encounter real-world proof of the tyranny-preserving function of doublethink -- a truth hidden by a malicious lie, a contradiction in terms, a pearl concealed by pig dung. It is exemplified by the Christians’ two-part claim our species’ history (A), reveals an observable “moral arc,” which indeed it does, and (B), the all-time Big Lie this arc bends toward "justice" -- which it most assuredly does not, the terror-tabooed truth we painfully learn only if we dare study the approximately 6,000-year historical timeline of ever-more-deadly patriarchal atrocities.

What we also discover is prior to the patriarchal conquest, our species’ technological and socioeconomic progress walked mostly hand-in-hand, one nurturing the other in a symbiosis of humanitarian betterment based ultimately on oneness with nature and kinship within the family of Mother Earth.

Matriarchy was societal motherhood symbolized by its variously named Goddess: its universal quest for better living -- not merely as sustainable food supplies, indoor plumbing and central heating, but the relentless improvement of human health and the infrastructured time both to advance our Stonehenge-based understanding of our relationship to the cosmos and relish the sensual wisdom that grants female and male equal potential of maximum sexual fulfillment. As with motherhood itself, matriarchy’s "moral arc" bent toward more humanely fulfilling futures, its ethos epitomized by First Nations’ memories of beneficent visitors from beyond the sunrise, the global reach of the Minoan trading commonwealth and the game-park wealth of the Iroquoian Confederacy, for which, in lieu of the destroyed links, see the recommended reading again appended to this text.

Patriarchy’s consequences irrefutably prove it matriarchy’s diametrical opposite. The "greatest tyrant" competition at the core of patriarchal history defines it as the self-obsessed, morally imbecilic, serial-killer minded, definitively ecogenocidal quest by individual males for the sadistic, rape-everything omnipotence attributed to their allegedly divine male idols (double entendre intended). Patriarchal violence terminated the matriarchal partnership of humanitarianism and technological advance; it divided these former evolutionary partners into murderously hateful foes; it reduced "progress" to the perpetual refinement and weaponization of the technology and psychology of everlasting war.

The Bomb is patriarchy’s species-terminating orgasm, its mono-orgasmic final solution to the terrifying and hatefully envied multiply-orgasmic female, its mushroom-shaped ejaculations flaming upward from the definitively Abrahamic miasma of terminal climate change as apocalyptic declarations of our Masters' omnipotence.

What history now bends toward -- what the patriarchal timeline has always bent toward throughout its ongoing 6,000 year effort of apocalyptic nazification -- is ever-more-inescapable tyranny on the mandatory global Trail of Terrified Tears to extinction.

Patriarchy’s preservation thus requires constant application of ececogenocidal force.

Which in turn mandates destruction of every trace of our humanitarian achievements, lest they inspire further outbreaks of influential feminist rage, as when a wildcat strike by all five thousand of the women employed by Petrograd’s Lesnoy Textile Works on 8 March 1917 triggered the entire Russian Revolution.

*****

THOSE APOCALYPSE-ENABLERS who yet respond to our Masters’ ever-more-obvious malignancy by claiming such cleverly schemed malice "is just too outrageous to believe" should take note of the fact the obliteration of any and all history favorable to the 99 Percent is precisely what the Nixon/Kissinger/Pinochet triumvirate of terror imposed, albeit with less-than-total success, on pre-Internet Chile:

"The regime’s aim was more than the violent repression of the (Unido Popular) and the left. It wanted to ensure that nothing remained for the next generation to remember or be proud of—none of the cultural, social, and economic achievements made under Allende. Pinochet undertook a policy of systemic eradication of everything that immortalized the thousand days of the UP. The junta did more than carry out crimes against the Chilean people, for it attempted to create a year zero, devoid of a Marxist past. Chilean history became before and after the coup."

Since then, the ongoing reduction of our species’ libraries of printed manuscripts to concentrated collections of electrons -- that is, from intentionally preservative media to storage intentionally vulnerable to flip-of-the-switch destruction -- renders all our species’ wisdom and knowledge readily redactable.

Patriarchy’s desperation to suppress all evidence of humanitarian potential -- even if our Masters are miraculously prevented from launching their thermonuclear Final Solution -- means any of us who benefited from the now-prohibited education that nurtured rational thinking or are old enough to remember vividly the era of national hopefulness borne of the New Deal are now at ever-greater risk for extermination.

Typically we’re murdered not by now-unfashionable death camps but cunningly euphemism-protected mechanisms of slow-motion genocide -- homelessness, denial of welfare and food stamps, abolition of Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid and methodical destruction of any other remnants of our species’ now-prohibited positive mindfulness.

We are thus imprisoned by inescapable surveillance, our sadistic overseers’ whips the electronic media Big-Lie-pimped as tools of personal liberation but which are now revealed as the invisible concentration-camp fencing its critics, myself among them, always assumed it to be.

*****

LET US THEN briefly review some exceptionally vivid photographic documentation of patriarchy’s apocalyptic consequences: fire and drought; the climate-change devastation inflicted most recently on Pakistan, Puerto Rico and Florida; and above all else the deliberate intensification of all these horrors. Note the ecogenocidal competition forced on all nations by patriarchy, exemplified by how China has overthrown the ecogenocidally top-seeded USian Empire as the planet’s champion polluter; note too the bring-on-doomsday message of ecogenocidal sabotage, as in the greenhouse-gassing of the world with methane.

The obvious symptoms of our plight -- what military intelligence correctly refers to as "enemy indications" -- begin with the fact our global Masters claimed inability to organize collective amelioration of climate change is becoming our species' terminal Big Lie.

It is proven so by their mutual rejection of their historically proven capacity for successfully cooperative international achievements -- a bring-on-the-apocalypse decision the apocalyptic magnitude of which is exemplified by contrasting the ruling-class successes of the international space station with our Masters’ terminally deadly refusal to mobilize against our looming extinction. The terminal failure of USian democracy -- its relentless march toward white male supremacy climaxed by the irreversible Christonazi tyrannies methodically inflicted on us by the cabal of lifetime-appointed führers that now and forever gives the U.S. Supreme Court the permanent omnipotence sought by Hitler -- thus redefines the entire nation as a failed state.

Let us not forget that any such perpetuation of evil -- for example, the approximately 47,000 annual deaths the One Percenters inflict on us by the intentionally genocidal denial of medical care -- redefines that evil as policy rather than anomaly or coincidence.

Quoth Caitlin Johnstone in "Future Generations (If There Are Future Generations)" there is no longer any question our species "built our entire civilization around economic models that could only result in the destruction of our biosphere.”

The apocalyptic failure of the United States to transcend its founders’ ecogenocidal white racism and achieve even the rudiments of social democracy? Marxism’s abject failure at halting the patriarchy-mandated apocalypse? As Audre Lorde so memorably points out, "the Master’s tools will never dismantle the Master’s house."

*****

FIVE YEARS OLD when the USian Empire nuked Japan, somehow I instantly recognized the bombing as the terminally apocalyptic event it truly is, its emotional shock far exceeding even that inflicted by my birthmother’s violent attempts to murder my father and me on that year’s Summer Solstice Eve. But it took me another half-decade to intellectually mature enough to verbalize my recognition of the bombing as "the beginning of the end of the world" -- a conviction I knew to be so dangerously subversive, I kept it strictly to myself until the Cuban Missile Crisis.

Even then I dared share it only with my first wife, a Baltimore artist and poet to whom I am forever grateful for introducing me via Plato’s Republic to the hitherto-only imagined satisfaction of reliably thought-provoking, often naked-souled conversation with a woman my own age who was unabashedly my intellectual equal but who later ended our marriage in ideological retaliation for my post-arrest civil rights activism:

Quoth she: "Loren, are you getting involved with communists and stuff?"

Quoth I: "Yeah, probably."

Quoth she: "Then I’m leaving."

Most often though I resisted thinking about the bombing because on the rare occasions my usually impregnable mental resistance failed, it flung me into a uniquely bottomless realm of psychologically unbearable horror. Then I would slam my mental door on it as quickly as a firefly’s flicker, my don’t-go-there emotional-pain-avoidance reflex toughened to near-absolute dependability by surviving my hateful birthmother’s efforts at marticide and post-partum abortion.

(Which probably explains why now even at age 82 I must always look outside myself for words or analogies adequate to describe the pivotal psychological wounding inflicted by the bombings -- the one relentlessly tabooed symptom that would correctly redefine the radiation sickness vectored locally by Hiroshima and Nagasaki as physical symptoms marking the global onset of an incurable psychological pandemic of global despair. Exactly as our Masters intended.)

Indeed in all my years of searching I have found only two books and two films that dare attempt to express its inescapable and infinite hopelessness. The books are John Hershey’s Hiroshima (Alfred Knopf: 1946) and Nevil Shute’s On the Beach (William Morrow and Company: 1957); the films are the John-Paxton-scripted Hollywood variant of On The Beach, directed by Stanley Kramer (United Artists: 1959) and Pandora, written and directed by Park Jeong-Woo (CAC Entertainment: 2016). Pandora is the very best anti-nuclear film I have yet seen.

*****

IT NEVER OCCURRED to me to ponder our true Masters’ identity until 1971, when a newly released Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young song eerily underscored a question I had begun to ponder as the press-officer on a federal Office of Opportunity "community mobilization" (sic) project in Washington state

I was offered the job because of my volunteer work for a Whatcom County fair-housing group, and I arrived in the state capitol of Olympia eager to continue my activism on a much broader front by using my professional investigative-reporting and documentary photography skills to propagate the project’s five statewide coalitions: Housing, Welfare Rights, Education, Labor and Youth.

But I quickly discovered the education and labor coalitions had been infiltrated, captured. subjugated and weaponized by the John Birch Society, a prime ideological ancestor of today’s Hitler-worshiping Christonazis.

As I remember, the proto-Christonazis took the education coalition merely by following slave-trader and Ku Klux Klan founder Nathan Bedford Forrest’s probably apocryphal advice to "git thar fustest with the mostest" -- a takeover I thought looked suspiciously as if it had been aided by the feds: remember Tricky Dick Nixon was president and was already known to have commissioned the Rand Corporation to prepare a publicly acceptable rationale for suspending the 1972 election.

The labor coalition meanwhile had essentially self-destructed when the Birchite infiltrators -- or more likely their German war-criminal-nazified Central Intelligence Agency leadership -- proved sophisticated enough to leverage already paralytic intra-union and inter-union racial and gender hatreds into now-obvious precursors to the irreparable divisions sustained by today’s identity politics.

Next destroyed was the youth coalition, which collapsed in despair after its hugely successful initiative campaign to lower the drinking age to 18 collected nearly twice the signatures required to get it on the ballot but was terminated by the extreme prejudice of the fanatical proto-Christianazi prohibitionists. Their own efforts perpetually focused on re-imposition of national prohibition, they looted  all the Youth Coalition's signed petitions from a parked automobile left unguarded by the ruinously irresponsible activists who were delivering it to Olympia.

Inflicted only days after I joined the Washington State Conference of Coalitions, this atrocity told me we were under surveillance by powerful enemies far more sophisticated than anyone borne of the state’s typically xenophobic, white-supremacist, anti-Jewish, anti-intellectual Moronic Majority.

It also told me my presumptive role of propagating propagandist was really that of organizing our strategic and tactical defense.

Which in turn left me expressing aloud to my WSCC management colleagues Terry MacDonald and Yvonne Howard my immediate need to know just how high up the ruling class our enemies were -- a question not even obliquely answered until 1974 when Watergate felon John Ehrlichman admitted the state’s prideful ignorance ensures its function as a favorite rat-lab for the perfection of techniques of oppression.

In any case, by the time I was hired to organize our resistance, our enemies had left us only two functional coalitions. One was Welfare Rights, a wondrously defiant biracial solidarity of proudly proletarian women who were then in the process of ejecting a trio of Ivy-League-schooled feminists for preaching man-hating as the only legitimate first step to female liberation. The other survivor was Housing, which had already acquired sufficient support amongst upwardly mobile whites to ram through legislation repealing a state law that had hitherto granted landlords literally limitless power to oppress tenants.

But when we pled for the competent secretarial support we needed to launch a media blitz to protect the welfare mothers from further assaults, state OEO repeatedly denied it.

And when I abetted my investigative skills with booze to manipulate an official into revealing the reasons for the denial, I learned our true purpose was the predecessor of "change we can believe in": creating the illusion of working toward social-democratic reform while ensuring our own efforts were but charades, invariably defeated in the end.

Rejecting OEO’s effort to redefine my more-than-adequate WSCC salary as bribery for submission, I immediately resigned in protest.

As I know from 30 years on newspaper and/or magazine staffs and the remainder of my life as a politically exiled freelancer, this clandestine reversal of stated purpose is absolutely typical. My resignation is not:  too many of my colleagues are de facto wage-slaves who have families to support and in the realm of unspeakable evil this nation was reduced to on 22 November 1963, they have no choice but surrender.

Thus we see how the ultimate purpose of all post-New-Deal USian governance at every level is the use of false promises to pacify the Moronic Majority by fostering just enough imbecility of hope to sustain our Masters’ boiled-frog imposition of ever-more-inescapable tyranny.

*****

LIBERAL APPLICATION OF Occam’s Razor limits to three the logically probable identities of our ecogenocidal assailants:

Firstly there’s the Secret Fundamentalism at the Heart of American Power, the frightening proof of which Jeff Sharlet bravely reveals in The Family (Harper, 2008) in further confirmation of the courageous revelations by Chris Hedges in American Fascists: the Christian Right and the War on America (Free Press: 2006).2 Less well-know are the Christians’ declarations of misogynistic, ecogenocidal hatred of our Mother Earth declared by fundamentalist-church reader-boards throughout the early ‘70s: Organic Is Satanic and Environmental Means Of The Devil.3

One need only scan their formal theology to recognize the Christonazis’ suicidal intent is salvation by the permanent destruction of the life-bearing capabilities of our planet, which they believe to have been captured by Satan despite the efforts of their alleged savior Jesus and which must thus be reduced to an eternally lifeless orb.

Think of it as the global counterpart of the Empire’s Vietnam policy: "gotta nuke the planet to save it from the Devil."

Such an intent as the clandestine purpose of imperial policy -- a policy unquestionably enforced by the global terror inflicted by USia’s demonstrations of infinite savagery at Hiroshima and Nagasaki -- would surely explain how and why the normally cooperative international leadership dutifully pretends it’s powerless to achieve any effective agreement to even ameliorate terminal climate change.

But assuming for a moment this were the only operative possibility, it would eliminate the obvious (and obviously relentlessly censored) fact the years of nuclear winter inevitably inflicted by thermonuclear apocalypse would unquestionably reverse global warming, World War III might therefore actually preserve planetary life, albeit nothing above the cockroach level.

Thus while there’s no  question this onslaught by Christianity is already well underway, the extent of its ecogenocidal culpability remains obscure.

Secondly then there is the approximately equal probability the post-World-War-II world is increasingly ruled by a clandestine Nazi International, an organization spawned by Germany and the USian Empire c. 1944-45 to disguise nazism as "neoliberalism" and keep its ideologies of identity politics and racial hatred alive for future weaponization of global conquest.

Even were I to reject the evidence presented by Joseph P. Farrell and the late Mae Brussel as useless "conspiracy theory," I find sufficient indications in the past 90 years of USian corporate and governmental history to evaluate the Nazi International hypothesis as probably true.4 Indeed it would not surprise me to learn it is headquartered in or directly across the river from Washington D.C.

But one important indication yet apparently remains a perplexing mystery; neither of our two suspects -- nor the likelihood they are opportunistic collaborators in global ecogenocide -- explain the skyrocketing incidence of momentary intrusions by ever-more-obviously hostile UFOs.

Were these vessels of earthly origin, their presence would be recognized as the aerial reconnaissance it unquestionably appears to be.

Witness too in this context our Masters’ handling of the UFO matter, 75 years -- three quarters of a century -- from official denial to official confirmation of evidence that logically allows only two (rational) explanations: either the UFOs are here to monitor our behavior much as psychologists monitor lab rats, or they are mapping the planet and testing our defenses in preparation for full-scale invasion. Given their obvious technological omnipotence, either likelihood reduces patriarchal religion to primitive science fiction and ourselves to future slaves, in either case, humanity besieged by forces so infinitely powerful, resistance is (genuinely and forever) futile.

Extraterrestrial invasion? That’s logical possibility number three, with the only remaining questions the extent to which we have already been conquered and the parallel extent to which our earth-born Masters have already betrayed us, selling out the entire 99 Percent in return for the invaders’ promises to maintain the already self-perpetuating One Percent aristocracy as their overseers on Slave Plantation Earth.

The most hideously repugnant aspect of this hypothesis is the since-suppressed observation by several prominent USian scientists in the mid-1970s that the g-forces generated by the UFOs’ instantaneous directional changes at speeds in excess of 25,000 miles per hour are survivable only by exoskeletal life forms.

In other words, if our conquerors are genetically advanced predatory insects, they are also demonstrably clever enough to terraform themselves a new home by poisoning our Mother Earth with patriarchy for the past 6,000 years. Now -- with our planet’s soaring temperatures making it ever more comfortable as a cosmic roach motel -- perhaps they are preparing to make it their new homeland, much as our ancestors invaded the Americas for the same purpose.

What this also suggests is we may be pawns in a much larger fight than we imagine. The interstellar war suggested by Hindu and Abrahamic texts is indicative the patriarchal conquest of planet Earth -- initiated by the terrorism of allegedly "divine" apparitions (in the Abrahamic religions the ball-of-fire emergence of "Yahweh" atop Mt. Ararat, also talking snakes, fiery wheels in the sky and loquacious brushfires) – may thus have been the beginning of an unspeakably malicious, bottomlessly evil, irresistibly cunning ecogenocidally apocalyptic effort to herd humanity into self-extermination and reduce our Mother Earth back to the bug planet she was in the Ordovician, 480 million years ago.

(Yeah, I know all earthly cooperative-insect hives are queendoms; but who’s to say the drones of whatever realm is attacking us didn’t overthrow their queen and put a fire-ant version of Donald Trump’s idol Hitler in place as dictator for life. In any case, the ever-more-obvious fact we are doomed no matter what happens means the cliché "all bets are off" is now our species’ ultimate truth.)

If extraterrestrial invasion is indeed what obtains, it would thoroughly explain our earth-borne Masters’ two-faced betrayal: claiming concern about climate change even as they set aside their ideological conflicts to unite in serving the conquerors by intensifying their ecogenocidal destructiveness.

While all humans are self-preservationists, the deadly difference between the One Percenters and ourselves is the latter have made themselves omnipotent by the weaponization of their technology -- something the purposeful destruction of the Soviet Union guarantees we the 99 percent will never again be allowed the resources and wealth to overcome.

Our Masters realize it was the advent of firearms made an armed proletariat possible, which in turn forced concessions from a viciously sadistic, murderously self-centered, utterly sociopathic ruling class. Now all those concessions are being reversed, complete with forcible disarmament and its intended consequences, the mandatory pacifism and compulsory victimhood that defines slavery and serfdom.

Since history shows imperial conquest always follows the same ecogenocidal pattern –note how the hereditary Celtic aristocracy who survived beyond Roman conquest preserved its authority by serving the conquerors as local overseers; likewise the conquered aristocrats of India, Africa and many First Nations tribes survived by serving the British Empire in much the same way.

Above all else note the global surrender to generic nazism disguised as neoliberalism, especially the Chinese Communist Empire’s emergence to challenge the top-seeded USian Empire as the planetary champion in the ecogenocidal stakes for our species’ most deliberately deadly poisoner.

As I have said before, ideas have consequences. And when ecogenocidal consequences are sustained by policy, they are unequivocally intentional. In fact when we examine the evidence, it becomes undeniable patriarchy is ecogenocide -- deliberate, conscious, bottomlessly evil ecogenocide.5

Bombing an asteroid to keep it from hitting Earth? Our Masters are so infinitely evil,6 it wouldn’t surprise me the bombing has the opposite result, ensuring the asteroid hits us instead.

Nor would I doubt they believe themselves well-enough bunkered to survive. Indeed they have already told us as much by their escalation of thermonuclear terror to an all-time high.

Welcome to the global Auschwitz: Arbeit Macht Frei...und Todt.

______________________________________
1See my essay about the "Crypto-Radical Seismology Faction" resurrected from Northwest Passage, 28 July 1970, page 16. While it was primarily a discussion of the failures of urban radicalism, it was also beginning of my realization we cannot unshackle ourselves from capitalism without first overthrowing patriarchy. It is also  the only piece I wrote under the nom de guerre Angus L. Forsthe, my use of a pseudonym a product of the then-commonplace belief we were at the beginning of a socialist revolution.

2As much as I admire Hedges’ writing, with which I am in emphatic agreement probably 95 percent of the time, I deplore his slander of the non-USian residents of the American continents by his continued acceptance of the slavemaster-founded, meticulously nazified USian Empire’s wanton theft and intentional perversion of the continents’ name.

3My photographs of two such reader-boards in rural Washington state were destroyed by the arson fire of 1 September 1983. While many less-theocratic-minded Christians will protest this pejorative application of their theological name, the refusal of the mainstream churches to officially eject the Christonazis as heretics proves the usage to be both accurate and deserved.

4The proven indications include 1933-34 Bankers’ Plot; from 1938 onward, the financial aristocracy’s outright bribery and eventual purchase of influential factions within white protestant Christianity to produce the so-called “prosperity gospel”; c. 1933-1945, IBM’s obscenely profitable service to Hitler’s extermination of non-Aryans; beginning in l944, the defiantly anti-Soviet sanctuary the federal government secretly gave tens of thousands of Original Nazi war criminals and their recruitment by government and big business as advisors in fulfilling the banksters’ intended nazification of the nation; the suspicious timing of FDR’s death on 12 April 1945; the murder of JFK and the subsequent eleven years of ideologically "cleansing" slayings apparently ending with the murder of Karen Silkwood; the FBI’s COINTELPRO and the CIA’s Operation CHAOS; the advent of USian "identity politics" as the gateway to the permanent, Mein-Kampf fulfilling anti-solidarity functions of gender war and race war; the useful-idiot dovetailing of bring-on-the-apocalypse Christianity with the environmentalists’ demand for exterminating 90 percent of the working class; and let us never forget our Masters’.good-cop/bad-cop routine, the maliciously manipulative strategy that gave birth to "change we can believe in," demonstrably USia’s most effective weapon for discouraging voter -turnout: the bad-cop Republicans terrorize us , the Democrats pacify us with false promises of protection and both parties then collaborate in our betrayal. by ensuring the fulfillment of said promises is either legislatively prohibited or reduced to meaninglessness.. All of which is underscored by the ever-more-brazen re-emergence of localized nazism throughout the planet, its ultimate victory guaranteed by the ever-more-deadly poverty by which our Masters tyrannize the global 99 Percent. Since all of these indications are detailed in the immediately preceding essays, I see no need to elaborate them again here.

5There is fourth possibility, albeit one so contrary to patriarchal brain-warping even many of the most enlightened among us will probably reject it out of hand. The Gaia Hypothesis defines our Mother Earth as a living organism, conscious and self-regulating. Our species has warred against her since patriarchy’s onset; with its ecogenocidal war against her now entering its seventh millennia, she has obviously begun to fight back. The only remaining question is whether she intends to exterminate us or teach us to heed the example of our matriarchal ancestors and live harmoniously within her embrace; after all, is there any human function more essential to our species survival than competent motherhood?

6While censorship makes conclusive proof of the malignant magnitude  of our Masters' evil increasingly more difficult to find, the following books make it painfully obvious. Their titles are self-explanatory:  Howard Zinn, A Peoples' History of the United States (Harper and Row: 1980); Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz, An Indigenous Peoples' History of the United States (Beacon Press: 2014);  Timothy Snyder, Black Earth: the Holocaust as History and Warning (Tim Duggan Books: 2015); James Q. Whitman, Hitler's American Model: the United States and the Making of Nazi Race Law (Princeton University Press: 2017); and our oppressors' bible,  Adolf Hitler, Mein Kampf, the Ford Translation (Elite Minds Inc.: 2009-2010). By far the best over-view of the innumerable achievements of our relentlessly tabooed pre-patriarchal millennia is Barbara Mor's The Great Cosmic Mother: Rediscovering the Religion of the Earth, (Harper & Row: 1987, 1991). Gavin Menzies, The Lost Empire of Atlantis (William Morrow: 2011), details his authoritative, extensively researched hypothesis that the Minoans, whose pre-patriarchal civilization thrived for at least a thousand years, were seafarers enough to organize the first global trading commonwealth; bear in mind while reading Menzies that First Nations accounts suggest an anciently widespread "old people's" culture  based on barter and shared knowledge rather than on conquest and slavery. Marija Gimbutas, The Civilization of the Goddess: the World of Old Europe (HarperCollins: 1991), summarizes the archaeological evidence that proves the superior sustainability of Europe’s pre-patriarchal culture, while Robert Graves, The White Goddess: an Historical Grammar of Poetic Myth (Farrar, Straus and Giroux: 1966/1982), explores in detail the associated aesthetics and metaphysics. Thomas E. Sanders and Walter W. Peek – their indigenous names respectively Nippawanock (Cherokee) and Metacomet (Narragansett-Wampanoag) -- do likewise in their dated but nevertheless still relevant Literature of the American Indian (Glencoe Press: 1973).

LB/23 September-7 October 2022

--30--


To Legitimize Its Six-Millennial Rape of Our Mother Earth, Apocalyptically Competitive Patriarchy Suppresses at Least 194 Millennia of Female-Centered Cooperative Sustainability

Lughnasadh (True Fall) August 1995Organic vegetables grow most productively when they're consciously planted in worshipful recognition of our absolute dependence on our planetary mother's beneficence. This was my 1995 back-country garden amidst its 31 July-1 August celebration of Bron Trogain/Lughnasadh. 
(Photo by Loren Bliss © 1995, 2022)  

*****

ARCHAEOLOGY AND ANTHROPOLOGY -- see especially the works of Robert Graves, Marija Gimbutas, Barbara Mor, Gavin Menzies, Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz, Thomas E. Sanders and Walter W. Peek -- strongly suggest there was indeed an evolutionary arc toward humanitarian cooperation and justice during the approximately 194,000 years before the terminally ecogenocidal imposition of patriarchy began turning our previously female-centered1 species against our Mother Earth some 6000 years ago.

So do the many First Nations' descriptions of prehistoric visitors to the Americas as benefactors rather than conquerors.

Were this not so -- were there no such cooperative solidarity  --  we'd never have been able to survive four ice ages, not to mention all the volcanic, seismic, bacteriological and zoological horrors that confronted us during our species' approximately 200 to 300 millennia.  

How then did patriarchy -- misogyny maximized to ecogenocide -- manage to conquer us with its suicidally divisive, every-man-against-everyone-else ideology? And why are we unable to free ourselves from its shackles?

*****

IN BITTER TRUTH, our patriarchal Masters are infinitely more evil than we dare imagine; they beset us in every way possible. Abrahamic theocracy proclaims patriarchy essential to counteract the (alleged) inferiority of all non-whites and to suppress the (alleged) sinfulness of all females, our Mother Earth most assuredly included. Hindu and Buddhist patriarchies view all females with equal contempt. Whites are conditioned to despise all people of color; in turn, peoples of color learn to despise all whites. Gender itself is weaponized, pitting males against females and females against males,  tainting even our most basic instincts with fear, distrust and contempt. Such is the ultimate balkanization purposefully inflicted by identity politics, the strategy by which our Masters perpetuate the extremes of cultural divisiveness they know inevitably leads to nazi race war,  thereby ensuring we will never be able to unite and overthrow them.

Meanwhile our Masters claim capitalism's  terminal transformation to neoliberalism -- that is, to the localized variants of nazism -- is unavoidable because  "society" itself is naught but delusion, or so their ever-more-apocalyptic lies pretend. Survival for each of us, they insist, thus demands endless, utterly merciless competition against all others. Exactly as intended, the  disunity so perpetuated combines with inescapable surveillance and ever-more-thorough censorship to guarantee the human solidarity essential for even minimal reform  remains out of our collective reach forever -- that is, until the present world order is no more.

Ecogenocide thus rules our entire planet. Hidden for decades by our Masters' cunningly contrived vocabularies of  deception, its escalating ruin has become too deadly to conceal and too overwhelming to counteract or even minimally ameliorate; thus inescapably doomed to extinction or slavery by our Masters'  apocalyptic mandates  whether  disguised as "neoliberalism" or  "Marxism," the entire global 99 Percent is now reduced to the future as defined by the alternatives of rage, hopelessness and final surrender Kübler-Ross  identified as our species' psychological  norms for medically foreseen  dying and/or grieving.

The prime so-called "neoliberal" perpetrator of our  doom is of course USian imperial capitalism, which Hitler himself hailed as the global role-model for  governance by mass murder;  the prime Marxist example is the People's Republic of China, its so-called "Marxism" nothing more than  the dishonestly labeled imperialism of state capitalism -- profiteering by the state (rather than by some hereditary plutocracy) -- with its institutionally protected moral imbecility every bit as deadly as that inflicted by our own avowedly capitalist Masters.    

Note too how Christonazism, Islamic nazism, Hindu nazism, the “neo” resurrections of  Original German Nazism and all the other forms of nazism whether doctrinal or existential are all cunningly euphemized as mere "fascism." Obviously this deception is intended to suppress the potential of revolutionary awakening implicit in the torture-chamber/death-camp corpse-stench inevitably generated by usage of "Nazi" or "nazi" in any of its grammatical forms.2 

Accurate reading of patriarchal history also strongly suggests our Masters allowed us socialism and social democracy only when they were assured the proponents of each  would carefully suppress any acknowledgement of    patriarchy's ecogenocidal deadliness; study the Marxism-and-Feminism chapter (pages 13-20) of the carefully footnoted Barbara Mor work cited below for a brilliantly summarized rediscovery of the patriarch-suppressed  awareness shared by Karl Marx and Frederich Engels that our lost egalitarian cooperativeness had been the socioeconomically logical product of our prehistoric matriarchal proto-communism; contemplate too the implicit suggestion Marx and Engels might also have been concerned true socioeconomic equality would prove restorable only by matriarchy's renewal, notions  now  carefully excluded from formal Marxian ideology.

Beyond that, social democracy is invariably the ultimate political scam, capitalism allegedly "reformed" -- though only in "change-we-can-believe-in" charades that   could never threaten our Masters' omnipotence, our boiled-frog enfeeblement and subjugation thus always perpetuating (and often reinforcing) capitalism's ability to eventually transform itself permanently into nazism.

Though socialism includes the World Socialist Web Site -- our best, most reliable present-day source of accurate information about what our Masters are actually doing to us -- WSWS nevertheless yet tries to convince us to accept Marxism's one and only historically proven Big Mistake: its claim the horrors of patriarchy and its ideological and socioeconomic descendants are merely transitional discomforts, necessary growth-pains in an allegedly "inevitable" march toward universal equality and justice -- a "march" we now must recognize as wholly imaginary, naught but myth, misunderstanding and finally a Big Lie.

To bad for us  (and all the more power to the forces attacking our species and our planet),  even our most sincere would-be savior continues to discredit itself by deluging us with apocalyptic falsehoods about "progress" and the "moral arc" of history -- the arc that in any accurately labeled archaeo-historical timeline  reveals our species' most inescapably damning truth: that beginning maybe six-thousand years ago it bends relentlessly toward subjugation and extinction.

"Progress" -- whether adjectivally capitalist or Marxist -- is thus by far our species' most destructive self-contradictory noun.  It is also the deliberately ecogenocidal cancellation of any and all hope for human survival.

It may therefore seem to some we are  indeed witnessing the  "end of history" proclaimed in 1989 by Francis Fukuyama -- albeit in a manner that forever denies us even the very few positive Working Class outcomes he and all the other  neoliberal liars claimed to foresee. Not only have our Masters permanently eradicated  the former (extremely limited) New Deal social democracy; the socioeconomic savagery they've gloatingly imposed on us since then is -- exactly as intended -- eliminating empathy itself: note the self-obsessed moral imbecility exemplified by Hillary Clinton's obscene celebration of Omar Gaddafi's execution by anal impalement. Note too how its horror was popularly reduced to reality-television fun rather than the dire warning of run-amok evil it remains to anyone still fully human. With our Masters' reign of perpetual warfare deliberately metastasized from the imperial rat-lab  of the Middle East to methodical imposition on all the peoples of our wounded planet, the resultant atrocities are everywhere suppressing the remnants of humanitarian consciousness with the apocalyptic venom of social-Darwinism. 

Meanwhile let us never forget the ultimate lesson of our present-day plight: that patriarchy achieves its final fulfillment only as  nazism -- which, short of some humanitarian miracle,  means from now on, the very best any of us in the 99 Percent can ever expect are lives of constantly worsening, ultimately deadly poverty, this intended to exterminate all of us deemed "surplus workers" and force the enslavement of any 99-Percenter who somehow manages to survive this new, global, slow-motion holocaust. 

*****

T0 FREE OURSELVES from such shackles, we must first cast off the self-censorship imposed by the K-12 brainwarping that teaches so many of us to despise the study of history; once we do, we discover two of our species' more potent truths: firstly, that the real U.S. history  -- that is, the ecogenocidal history relentlessly tabooed by our Masters -- quickly makes it clear why Adolf Hitler regarded the United States as the prototypical nazi nation; secondly, we discover history as a compellingly dynamic record of human experience rather than the repugnant tedium of meaningless memorization to which it has been deliberately reduced by our USian Masters' education policy.

Then maybe we'll begin to comprehend the inescapable totality of the Orwellian/Machiavellian methodology by which our Masters are subjugating and re-enslaving us. And perhaps some of us will then find the courage to embark on the even-more-daring quest for genuinely sustainable humanitarian solutions -- outcomes that might save our species and our planetary motherland -- which are therefore the very outcomes patriarchy has always denied us.

By far the best over-view of the innumerable achievements of our relentlessly tabooed pre-patriarchal millennia is Barbara Mor’s 501-page, convincingly footnoted  expansion of an illustrated pamphlet by Monica Sjöö: The Great Cosmic Mother: Rediscovering the Religion of the Earth, (Harper & Row: 1987, 1991). Gavin Menzies, The Lost Empire of Atlantis (William Morrow: 2011), details his authoritative, extensively researched hypothesis that the Minoans, whose pre-patriarchal civilization thrived for at least a thousand years, were seafarers enough to organize the first global trading commonwealth; bear in mind while reading Menzies that First Nations accounts suggest an anciently widespread "old people's" culture that was based on barter and shared knowledge rather than on conquest and slavery. Marija Gimbutas, The Civilization of the Goddess: the World of Old Europe (HarperCollins: 1991), summarizes the archaeological evidence that proves the superior sustainability of Europe’s pre-patriarchal culture, while Robert Graves, The White Goddess: an Historical Grammar of Poetic Myth (Farrar, Straus and Giroux: 1966/1982), explores in detail the associated aesthetics and metaphysics. Thomas E. Sanders and Walter W. Peek – their indigenous names respectively Nippawanock (Cherokee) and Metacomet (Narragansett-Wampanoag) – do likewise in their dated but nevertheless still relevant Literature of the American Indian (Glencoe Press: 1973). Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz, An Indigenous People’s History of the United States (Beacon Press: 2014) documents in detail the patriarchy’s methodical extermination of those cultures.

The one book listed above that might prove difficult to obtain is Gimbutas' work, unfortunately one of our most important references -- its importance underscored by the relentless patriarchal censorship that has made her groundbreaking discoveries both difficult to find in local bookstores and prohibitively expensive when the search succeeds; this is because an ad hoc patriarchy of jealously hostile male academics have long conspired to keep her work out of print, which is why it is now also effectively censored by collector-pricing: on 11 August of this year, I was unable to find a usable copy of The Civilization of the Goddess priced at less than $62.59 plus tax and shipping. But Bookfinder.com – the source at which I begin all book searches – indicates the other recommended texts remain available at rational prices.

However, if the Christonazi conquest of the United States continues as predicted, all such works will undoubtedly be banned as “heretical,” with mere possession far more feloniously deadly than my illegal possession of Allen Ginsberg’s Howl was in theocratic Ku Klux Tennessee c. 1959.

It is a bit of an aside, but I am thus reminded of how in the always-sadistically biblical South, a basic D. R. Bliss Family rule was to never publicly acknowledge our extensive home library. Why? Because in the South of the 1940s and ‘50s -- reading politically illegal books (and my father had  more than one of those) -- could get you beaten, jailed, beaten again and maybe even killed -- same as in today's soon-to-be 41-state neo-Confederacy.3

Meanwhile we see how patriarchy radically re-defines our consciousness and being, reducing each of us to mere commodities intended only for profitable exploitation.  Our world, and by implication the entire universe, is thus shrunken to the womb-less ejaculate of some seemingly divine, viciously sadistic "involuntary celibate," the invading usurper-god who dares claim he created Planet Earth only six thousand years ago  -- not coincidentally just about when the patriarchal threat becomes archaeologically obvious.

So now at Christmas the multitudes  immortalize the divine victimization of a certain working-class Nazarene named Mary in a galaxy-caliber atrocity that redefines rape as "immaculate conception" -- which is of course the true but oft-concealed "conception-is-always-an-act-of-god" reason the Christonazis sadistically refuse rape and incest victims the medical, emotional and material rescue provided by abortion.

*****

SOME OF US, a growing few,  are at last coming to understand the ultimate and truly apocalyptic danger of capitalism is that it will always morph into nazism -- that nazism is its only possible outcome. That's because capitalism's transformation to nazism is in fact inescapable: the inevitable consequence of capitalism's powerfully symbiotic  proto-nazi combination of greed, moral imbecility and technological omnipotence.

Many more of us now also recognize ecogenocidally misogynistic religion, capitalism and nazism as direct descendants of patriarchy and thus properly name patriarchy as the ultimate perpe-traitor of our looming doom.

As indeed we damn well should; already -- this in addition to the USian wars of extermination waged against First Nations peoples -- we  have a 144-year litany of post-Reconstruction atrocities within the separate states. It begins with the U.S. Government's formal re-imposition of national white supremacy in 1877; it gains momentum with white supremacy's confirmation by SCOTUS in 1896; it triumphs, first by giving legions of Nazi war criminals governmental and Big Business sanctuary; next by the ideological reversals inflicted by the 11-year political murder spree that (apparently) began with the un-prosecuted slaying of President John Fitzgerald Kennedy and (seems to have) ended with the un-prosecuted martyrdom of Karen Silkwood; lastly by the election of Ronald Reagan -- "Ronnie the Nazi" to those of us who saw beyond his disguises -- the Powell Memo disciple whose clandestine mode of nazification unstoppably began the deliberate USian march toward destruction of the federal union and increasing international recognition of USia as our species’ ultimate -- and ultimately apocalyptic -- “failed state”:  a very real Public Enemy Number One.

Now, as a consequence, we suffer the present-day, de facto imposition of ecogenocidal theocratic tyranny by the Christonazi Supreme Court -- an affliction as destructive to human society as terminal cancer is to the human body.  

Nor is it by accident those 144 years of USian atrocities have unstoppably skyrocketed into permanent ChristoNazi omnipotence.  Humanitarian "progress" is thus proven impossible, never more than deception or delusion, with the only "moral arc" discernable in our species' patriarchal history leading exclusively toward ever-more-maximized tyranny and utterly inescapable re-enslavement -- its perpetrators granted real-world omnipotence by  the caste-prohibited wealth necessary to counter a technology of oppression already so inexplicably far beyond any 99-Percenter's ability to resist, it ensures our Masters rule is  forever: that is, until our entire species is extinct. 

Therefore let us now dare ask our species' most decisive question:

How then -- save by some form of extraterrestrial rescue (though only after they’ve raped our Mother Earth back to bug-planet permanence) --  can our Masters imagine they will escape the apocalyptic destruction they are so wantonly inflicting on all the rest of us?
___________________________

1I say "female-centered" to discourage the patriarchal attacks intended to suppress the increasingly irrefutable archaeological evidence our species was originally matriarchal or at the very least matrifocal and matrilinial.

2"Nazi" -- cap "N"-- is Weimar Republic slang that has since become a proper noun for Germany's N.S.D.A.P., the  Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei; "nazi" -- lower-case "n" -- is what our Masters deceptively label "fascism": localized and relentlessly euphemized nazism as in the  Ukraine, the Russian Federation, today's China plus of course the USian as-yet undeclared neo-Confederacy,  Pinochet's Chile and all USia's other hopelessly oppressed imperial puppets.

3Given the permanent absence of anything akin to the Soviet organized-resistance that terrified our nazi-minded Masters into allowing us the nearly five decades of New Deal social democracy that were forever terminated by the 1980 election, it seems obvious to me that once our Masters  complete the capture and theocratic "cleansing" of their intended 41-state neo-Confederacy, only a strong military alliance with a major foreign power would save the remaining nine anti-nazi coastal states -- all of their populations forcibly self-disarmed --  from conquest by Confederate blitzkrieg, its imperial  legions granted thermonuclear omnipotence by the doomsday arsenals of the former United States. Worse still, I know of no nation that by then would  dare try stop the new C.S.A. from achieving its ultimate intent: expanding Christonazi tyranny first to all North America, then to whatever land on this planet remains habitable.  

*****

(Next: my long-resisted  conclusions as to whom [and what] our real masters  truly are,
with apology for first estimating as a two-or-three-graf hypothesis what  has instead
grown into a separate concluding essay,  an ongoing work in progress.)

-- LB, 12-21 August 2022

-30-

 

 


Patriarchal Despotism's Three Deadliest Deceptions: Eternal Life, Human Progress, a Moral Arc That Bends toward Justice

98480012 - CopyAFTERMATH: a young woman finds an antique colander in the debris and wreckage washed ashore by the unprecedented high tides of an unusually severe winter storm.  (Photo by Loren Bliss ©2022) 

*****

WE ARE SUBJUGATED as we now are primarily because our conditioned ignorance and gullibility allow nearly all of us -- no matter how sophisticated we might imagine ourselves -- to be seduced by three of our species' most deceptively camouflaged intellectual malignancies.

The seductiveness of these symbiotic falsehoods is so overwhelming, not even the clarifying might of dialectic materialism -- Marxism's presumably impenetrable defense against irrationality -- seems able to protect us from their relentlessly induced delusions.

What are they then, these three most ruinous Big Lies, our ecogenocidally terminal triplets?

The most venomously destructive Big Lie is our pathetically superstitious belief in "eternal life," which -- because there's allegedly "a better home a-waitin in the sky" -- relieves us of any moral obligation to improve the conditions of life on earth. Next comes the ignorantly lethal twining of "progress" with the equally ignorant, equally false, equally crippling conviction the "moral arc" of our patriarchal history "bends toward justice."

"Progress" is the Big Lie that sought to shrink Nazi Germany from what it truly is -- patriarchy’s ultimate definition of itself -- to an anti-historical anomaly; the "arc toward justice" is the corroborative Big Lie by which our Masters leverage our brains into accepting "progress" as synonymous with "betterment" in the One Percent's living conditions -- never mind that for the 99 Percent, such "advancements" invariably mean worsening poverty, skyrocketing body-counts and irreversible environmental destruction.

But as any serious student knows, the arc of history itself is absolutely real -- though the reality it bends toward is not the blessing of liberty and justice but the terminal curse of its antithesis: ever-more-inescapably brutal subjugation by our nazi-minded Masters’ ever-more-technologically omnipotent  arsenal of horrors. Doubt me? Study the six-millennia historical timeline: note what Loreena McKennitt so memorably describes as "the months of peace and all the years of war."

*****

WHILE CAPITALIST "PROGRESS" and socialist "progress" are conventionally believed to be diametrical opposites, closer scrutiny reveals each ideology is equally committed to the apocalyptic destruction of our Mother Earth.  Though the socialist version is traditionally said to be synonymous with our species' quest for freedom and justice, that (former)  ideological truth has since been reduced to yet another Big Lie by the fact Communist China now exceeds the United States as this planet’s deadliest polluter. (The U.S. remains our species’ all-time champion at any and all forms of industrialized murder, which thus preserves its top-seeded role as the world champion of deliberate ecogenocide, a ranking not even    Nazi  Germany could challenge.)  Meanwhile the capitalist version of progress -- formerly euphemized as "bigger and better" --   is now revealed as the methodical reduction and subjugation of the 99 Percent: extermination of "surplus" workers and permanent enslavement of the survivors. Thus capitalist and socialist ideologies are now twinned in ecogenocidal destructiveness.

As our Masters learned by their nazification of Germany, the more vicious they are -- the harsher and more difficult they make survival for any of us whose lifeblood is measured by paychecks -- the closer they move the masses to embracing the intrinsically hateful identity-politics tribalism of generic nazism. And with the Soviet Union beaten, destroyed and no doubt gone forever, there is at present  no power left anywhere on this planet -- absolutely none -- capable of organizing a genuinely powerful anti-nazification campaign, which is the only development that might -- though with odds now only slightly better than those of the proverbial snowball in hell -- yet save us from this all-encroaching, all-destroying evil.2   Such is the ecogenocidal reality of patriarchal "progress."  

In synergistic combination with the fake history of a nonexistent  "arc...toward justice,” the antisocial venom inherent in this notion of "progress" is intensified to the Nth power, with every tyrant now testing his3 serial-killer instincts in competition for top ranking on the oppressive-technology-is-god’s-greatest-gift roster of our species' most ecogenocidal Masters. But the concept of "progress" itself -- the curiously persistent belief in some imaginary human dynamic that leads inevitably toward individual and collective betterment -- is proven by the very history it ignores to be among our species’ most self-destructive forms of magical thinking. Never forget our Masters' definition of "progress" includes the IBM-organized Holocaust, and enough  chemical, biological and thermonuclear weaponry to reduce our Mother Earth to a cinder as lifeless as any asteroid. 

Thus -- and it cannot be repeated too often -- the only “moral arc” evident in human history "bends" toward nazism on a global scale, which means we socialists are gravely mistaken in believing history is our ally and guarantor of our eventual triumph.

One of socialism's core principles -- that the historical momentum of "progress" makes socialism inevitable -- is itself proven wrong: not necessarily  a Big Lie (at least not in the beginning), but unquestionably a ruinous misunderstanding. For as the ongoing reversal of every one of our progressive reforms proves beyond dispute, it is the ecogenocidal momentum of patriarchal history -- the irresistible force of our Masters' eternally nazified will (however ideologically disguised) -- that is destroying us. 

Viewed objectively, our history -- save during the immediate aftermath of the Soviet Revolution -- is whatever our Masters impose on us; thus it is inseparable from our Masters’ historically proven policy of imposing ever-more-self-sustaining tyranny: a relentless march toward ever-more-omnipotent aristocracy protected by ever-more-sadistic zero-tolerance dictatorship fostered by ever-more-invincible technology.

*****

TO BEGIN THE process of discovering and thereby surviving the socioeconomic cancers lurking in our notion of "progress," we must first overcome the crippling aversion to the study of history intentionally inflicted on us by our Masters' insistence it be taught, K-12, as  nothing more than wearisome, intentionally repugnant drills in rote memorization of names, places and dates.  

Beyond that, I suggest reading five authors  the ChristoNazis damn as both treasonous and heretical. These are: Howard Zinn, A Peoples' History of the United States (Harper and Row: 1980); Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz, An Indigenous Peoples' History of the United States (Beacon Press: 2014);  Timothy Snyder, Black Earth: the Holocaust as History and Warning (Tim Duggan Books: 2015); Chris Hedges, American Fascists: the Christian Right and the War on America (Free Press: 2006); Jeff Sharlet: The Family: the Secret Fundamentalism at the Heart of American Power (Harper: 2008).

For me, the most influential gift of the above reading was its revelation of the ageless toxicity of the malevolence directed against the 99 Percent, especially the vast global majority of us who are not white.  A near-lifelong student of history and a miserably involuntary, New-York-City-born resident of five former slave states during most of my first 24 years, I am familiar with most of our Masters' innumerable atrocities; but until I read An Indigenous People's History and Black Earth, I had not realized our patriarchal Masters have always been motivated by the same philosophically and methodologically sophisticated hatefulness they exhibit today.  Yesteryear's Masters were just as conscious of the evil they were inflicting on First Nations folk --  and just as sadistically gleeful about their ecogenocidal triumphs -- as today's Masters are as they reduce us all back to serfdom and slavery.      

If we dare to truly comprehend the toxic magnitude of what assails us, I also recommend -- emphatically recommend --  reading what has again emerged as our species' bible of manifest evil, Adolf Hitler's Mein Kampf.4  If we are to truly know our enemy, Mein Kampf is the only book I know that reveals the otherwise unimaginable skill empowering the evil that is overwhelming us. Contrary to our most crippling misconceptions, our foes are neither ignorant nor stupid; they are in fact what they have always been: the best-educated, most intellectually malignant, most effectively cunning oppressors in our species' entire history. That's why -- if we are to have any chance of escaping our Masters' corporate slavepens -- learning something of our real history is necessarily part of our education for intellectual self defense. Nor can it be said too often the taboo'd historical facts revealed by the above bibliography prove beyond dispute our species' only "progress" since the advent of patriarchy is technological -- and that if we are not part of the aristocracy, its only "gift" is ever-more-inescapable despotism. Our freedom is diminished each time our Masters' technological prowess increases.  Thus for us, we the people of the 99 Percent,  "progress" merely strengthens the deadly shackles by which our Masters' long ago began re-enslaving us.

In other words, the sole function of "progress" under Capitalism is to sustain and intensify our Masters'  savagery. "Progress" is thus revealed as the intentionally terminal opposite of "sustainability."

This is clearly the mindset from which our Masters developed and promoted electronic media -- the world's first genuinely inescapable shackles of total surveillance falsely peddled as enhancements to human freedom and mindlessly embraced by entire populations of self-obsessed, fanatically acquisitive workers already reduced to pre-nazi moral imbecility by the relentlessly worsened hardships of survival.

But when we discover our forbidden history's excruciatingly painful revelations, we  are at long last able to chart such "progress" with an historically accurate arc. Whether from the five books cited above or from more extended studies of sociology and history, we learn that eras of humanitarian governance are but the tiniest intervals of relief in the long timeline of patriarchal despotism.

And then -- contrary to all the lies we’re told -- we discover the timeline’s arc curves relentlessly toward technologically maximized tyranny.

Which in turn reveals any notion of "progress" to be naught but diabolically clever propaganda, devastatingly effective in its primary function of perpetuating all present-day forms of tyranny. We discover "progress" as our Masters’ all-time whopper of deliberate disinformation and purposeful misdirection. As already noted,  if we believe in "progress," we can always dismiss past atrocities as anomalous aberrations we've somehow (magically) grown beyond rather than acknowledge them as the horrifying declarations of present-day human surrender to ecogenocidal evil they actually are.

Meanwhile -- thanks to our Masters' ongoing destruction of our planetary resource base -- we the people of the 99 Percent, we who are Working Class even if we are too brainwarped to acknowledge our credit-card servitude, every one of us is now forever doomed to struggling for survival in a realm of perpetually declining expectations and therefore eternal hopelessness.

What this means is implicit in the fact history tells us progressive change occurs only in response to rising socioeconomic expectations among the 99 Percent -- that declining Working Class expectations invariably diminish humanitarian considerations and often, as in the Holocaust or the extermination of First Nations peoples, completely suppress them.

Such is the challenge we socialists face. If even a trace of humanitarianism is to survive, if our species and our planet is to avoid destruction in some final paroxysm of terminal moral imbecility, we must transform our ideologies into  effective antidotes against skyrocketing despair: precisely what history tells us is impossible in any time of societal despair -- never mind today's hopelessness truly is bottomless, without precedent in our species'  experience.

Fact is, our Masters today believe their technological omnipotence has freed them of any obligations beyond themselves and their caste: theirs is the sadistic moral imbecility of a Vlad Tepes elevated to infinity by the “gifts” of modern technology: inescapable surveillance and an ever-expanding arsenal of doomsday weapons, with the ever- worsening environment to force our ever-more-violent reduction to social Darwinism, just as our masters have always intended.
___________________________

1Why nazism rather than fascism? Why do I choose "nazi" rather than "fascist" as my generic term for the run-amok evil that assails us? Note that each term originated from proper nouns. But in the capitalist world, only "fascist" -- with its implicit absence of Auschwitz-type death camps further gentled by the comic-opera undertones of the Mussolini regime -- became the generic. And knowing the galaxy-class psychological warfare skills of our Masters, I cannot doubt this now effectively mandatory usage of "fascist" rather than "nazi"  is deliberate deception to downplay their malignant intent. 

2Many socialists, especially my fellow Marxians, will denounce my use of "evil" as counter-revolutionary religious moralizing. In adamant rebuttal I suggest such critics consult Webster, which even in its unabridged second edition (Dorset and  Baber: 1983) minimizes the religious connections to "evil." I -- an agnostic Gaian pagan -- use it here without apology as the most linguistically apt, definitively correct, emotionally accurate English noun to describe what our Masters are doing to us: the methodically nazified socioeconomic miasma in which most of us are slowly being drowned and through which all  surviving 99 Percenters are to be enslaved.  

3Of course I am aware there are many female capitalists. I am also aware that capitalism -- at its core a greed-fueled, wealth-based, white-male-supremacist  death-cult -- is a subset of patriarchy, which itself is nothing other than maximally weaponized misogyny. Thus (real) feminists damn female capitalists as traitors to their gender; (real) socialists condemn all capitalists as traitors to the entire 99 percent; as traitors to our species; and as traitors to our Mother Earth. Thus when a female labels herself "capitalist," what she is really doing is declaring herself an ecogenocidally predatory male; when a male labels himself "capitalist," he is declaring himself a deadly enemy of the 99 Percent, an enemy of our species and most of all an apocalyptic rapist of our Mother Earth.    

4The Ford Translation (Elite Minds Inc.: 2009-2010), is the only version I could find that was not censored by collector pricing. While I have no way to evaluate the publisher's claim their Mein Kampf  is the most accurate English translation to date, the braggadocio of their firm-name leaves me suspicious of who and what they might be. Moreover I know Mein Kampf to be amongst our most tedious reads; I first read it c. 1954-1955 as part of my late father's know-our-enemy education. Then as now, it is the most difficult reading I have yet encountered. To be sure, that's partly because  no translation can improve the semi-literate wretchedness of Hitler's jailhouse German -- but the real reason Mein Kampf is so painful to read is it is a window on pure evil, in any language the terrifying examination of a monstrous Malleus Maleficarum mind that could as easily be a modern hybrid of Augusto Pinochet, Ayn Rand, Ted Bundy and James Fields. )

(Next: Human Societies Were Not Always Competing in a Death Race) 

LB/18-29 July 2022

-30-


Five Links That Explain Why We Are All Doomed to Extinction

(Sorry; with Permanently ChristoNazified SCOTUS Defiantly Resurrecting the Racism and Misogyny of the Confederacy and the German Third Reich, Moron Nation's Skyrocketing Horrors Force My Reversion to Political Reporting.)

IMG_1703

FEEL AGAIN THEIR NOW-TRIUMPHANT HATE -- Thanks to the "Democratic" (sic) Party's post-22-November-1963 function as the permanently Christo-Nazified Republican Party's treasonous Fifth Column,  we'll be subjugated by the GOP's lifetime Supreme Court appointments until we the people of the 99 Percent are either dead or eternally enslaved and the remnants of our nation either completes our Masters' ever-more-obviously intended destruction of the world or by some miracle is added to the mass grave of failed states and collapsed empires before its ecogenocidal agenda is complete. Meanwhile these two were among the now-victorious fanatics who in 2017 picketed Tacoma Planned Parenthood to demand the sexual re-enslavement of women. (Photo by Loren Bliss ©2022)

*****

HERE ARE THE five links of dreadfulness, their concluding item added -- as if in terminal finality --  by the death-sentence the ChristoNazi SCOTUS imposed on our species and our Mother Earth, thereby fulfilling the ecogenocidal mandate at the core of all Abrahamic theology:

As Trump looks on, Illinois Republican hails overturn of Roe as “victory for white life” 
(Brace yourself for an ever-expanding universe of racist horrors.)    

Indictments in Flint Water Crisis Are Invalid, Michigan Supreme Court Finds
(Thus Flint's Masters are granted the same permanent immunity that protected the original Bankers' Plot conspirators -- those who sought to make the United States a  Nazi German protectorate -- freeing each cabal of perpe-traitors  to propagate  their male-white-supremacist malignancies to whatever venomous extent they choose.) 

Omicron BA.4 and BA.5 subvariants fuel yet another global COVID-19 surge
(Obviously, not even another umpteen-million deaths will sate our Masters' ecogenocidal cravings.)

With the end of Roe, the US edges ever closer to civil war 
(To survive the inevitable NeoConfederate onslaught -- neutron bombs, tactical nukes and burgeoning slave plantations included --  the nine so-called "bluest" states, those that seem most committed to the doomed struggle to preserve a few remnants of  New-Deal social democracy, will either have to unite with Canada to gain the protection of the militarily potent remnants of the  British Empire, or -- more likely -- submit to unconditional-surrender annexation by whatever few allegedly anti-nazi world powers might remain.)  

US Supreme Court Drops Carbon Bomb on the Planet
(Relentlessly pursuing the agenda they claim is commanded by the ecogenocidal sadist they've  anointed as their "one true god,"  our Masters have thus condemned us all -- the human 99 Percent and most other forms of earthly life -- to death by deliberately inflicted extinction, simultaneously reversing evolution by guaranteeing the reduction of our Mother Earth back to the bug planet she was some 480 million years ago.) 

*****

THE ECOGENOCIDE EXEMPLIFIED by the  above is no longer "plausibly deniable"; in fact it has become so plausibly undeniable, so overwhelmingly obvious, we are at last awakening to the self-evident truth our Masters1 -- whomever (or whatever) they might be -- have commanded their theological, cultural and political puppets to maximize all barriers to human survival.

Why? Because our Masters are convinced -- most likely by the results of illegal psychological experiments on prisoners --  that confinement in an environment of predatory deadliness is a sure way  to eliminate capitalism's  greatest enemy: our species' capacity for humanitarian empathy.

We’ve also begun to suspect that’s probably why our Masters’ propagandists o-so-cleverly camouflaged their overlords' ecogenocidal intent with the deceptively gentle-sounding euphemism “neoliberalism” -- the ideology that redefines run-amok selfishness as the fuel of  human  progress, thus elevating greed to godliness and imperial conquest to godhood itself.

But -- as we of the 99 Percent can most bitterly attest -- "neoliberalism" turns out to be a nastily deceptive, mostly slow-motion effort to disguise capitalism's inevitable deterioration into  localized forms of nazism.

Nevertheless, a combination of factors -- the U.S. policies of deliberate de-education, conditioned prideful ignorance and ever-intensifying censorship paramount among them -- ensure most of "neoliberalism's" innumerable victims remain unaware the elimination of human empathy and its replacement by self-obsessed morally imbecilic greed are foremost among the ideology’s implicitly defined purposes. Thus, exactly as scripted by our Masters psychological warfare experts,  the blame for its destructiveness  is convincingly shifted onto its victims, which makes "neoliberalism" almost impossible to resist.

But now conditions of everyday life for the 99 Percent have deteriorated to the point not even the most distracting "conspiracy theory" controversies can   obscure the sustained, therefore ever-more-undeniable truth  the sole function of "neoliberalism"   is our Masters’ endless enrichment of themselves   and their favored vassals by the slow-motion robbery and extermination of "surplus workers" (i.e., all the rest of us), followed by permanent enslavement of the non-aristocratic survivors and eventual reduction of the global human population to some 500,000,000 persons. As Jungian psychology implies, an ideology’s true intent is evidenced by its ratio of rescue to ruin; already we have four decades' irrefutable proof the ruin inflicted by "neoliberal" socioeconomic down-pressing far exceeds its rescue potential: in deadly truth it is creating a social-Darwinist world already so harsh its emergent horrors were until quite recently genuinely unimaginable beyond the realms of  fiction.

Back in the ‘60s, somebody coined the slogan “eat the rich,” and in those halcyon days, everybody I knew -- self included -- took it as nothing more than  sarcastic hyperbole, a dramatic exclamation  that underscored the already-evident world hunger crisis, which would make its awareness-goading potential approximately the same  as that of the popular World War II song, “Love Is Gonna Be Rationed.” Neither was ever intended to be taken literally. But now, as if in the gullible bigotry of terrified vengeance, it seems our Masters intend to reduce the entire 99 Percent to such a desperately predatory struggle for individual survival, it would even legitimize  subsistence cannibalism. Such is the quintessence of “neoliberalism” -- the mass-market label of the serial-killer ethos that forever defines the entire global Ruling Class.

Why suppress empathy? Because without empathy there cannot be solidarity. Without solidarity, there cannot be effective resistance to our Masters' tyrannies. And without the capability of such resistance, humanity is doomed.

Having weaponized their unprecedented wealth into the real-world counterpart of the let's-nuke-Sodom-and-Gomorrah omnipotence hitherto attributed  to their ecogenocidal deity, our Masters and their vassals now seem intent on completing the anti-humanitarian apocalypse initiated by their 19th and 20th Century ancestors. The result  is  a multi-generational USian horror story -- one so relentlessly censored, its details are mostly known only by the more courageously research-minded historians, sociologists and investigative journalists.

But most of this lot has no intention of publicizing their damning knowledge.

That's no doubt because they've learned the same bitter lesson I was taught by the arsonist(s) who burned my "Dancer" just as it seemed on the brink of mainstream publication-- that if our Masters are in any way threatened by our work, they will always find some way to destroy it, or at the very least to make certain it is never published, which in all probability means there will never be any truthful recounting of the staircase-logical sequence of carefully choreographed atrocities by white-male-supremacist Christian fanatics that shaped USia2  into the world epicenter of ChristoNazism and the de facto successor to the Third Reich.  

Though at age 82 I have no intention of undertaking such an expose', I nevertheless retain the professional instincts that were mine as a journalist and part-time college instructor, and I’ve vivid memories of the pivotal incidents involved in the destruction of what I, like so many,  used to ignorantly think of as "my country." Professional obligation required I follow all such events closely, a number of  which I also covered firsthand. Thus I could hardly stop myself from contemplating how one might present the fiercely tabooed story of the destruction of what we used to foolishly imagine was "our" nation, documenting it  in a manner both unflinchingly accurate and compelling enough to break through the self-censorship inflicted by USia's deliberately conditioned aversion to the study of history.

Initially I merely sought to confirm my recollections of the relevant atrocities, but as I  substantiated  my memories,  I  soon discovered the accumulation of evidence to be so eerily self-organizing I  began setting it down as a chapter outline -- a rare and welcome occurrence for any writer simply because it is always easier to write a story so dynamically true its emergence on paper seems powered by a relentless logic that confirms its accuracy even as it fuels its   momentum;  also -- perhaps because for me journalism was always a way of life rather than  merely a job -- I find it much easier to report truth than to fabricate disinformation.

Here then is the initial product of my impulsive contemplation: a chapter outline of how I might tell the story, whether as lessons or essays -- an Occam's-Razor-tested contribution I trust could prove at least minimally useful to anyone who dares imagine our Masters might allow them to  report what is actually being done to us:  

Chapter/Lesson One: reiterates how the racism of the Southron slavemasters and their New England financiers begot the so-called American Revolution and now ironically begets the destruction of the nation so founded. 

Chapter/Lesson Two: tracks the emergence of white supremacy as  formalized ideology in both the Ku Klux response to the defeat of the Confederate rebellion and the again-burgeoning popularity of Hitler's core belief, detailed in Mein Kampf  and further envenomed by USian identity politics,  that race war -- not class war -- is the ultimate human struggle.   

Chapter/Lesson Three:  exposes the mental goosestepping of the pro-Hitler/pro-Mussolini aristocrats who perpetrated the 1933-34 Bankers’ Plot against President Franklin Delano Roosevelt and his New Deal social democracy; includes commentary on our subsequent mass seduction by the illusion of humanitarian strength and progress in how the One Percent’s intended nazification of the United States was thwarted by courageous exposure -- never mind the plotters were then granted immunity from prosecution.

Chapter/Lesson Four: documents how the  plutocratic plotters’ undiminished tyrannical intent is again affirmed by their pre-war weaponization of Christian fanaticism and reaffirmed by post-war developments including the purge of anyone branded "prematurely anti-fascist," my late father among them, and the  imposition of the viciously anti-union Taft-Hartley Act. That said, no atrocity reveals our Masters' long-range intent more glaringly than the pornographic eagerness by which government and big business granted legions of Nazi war criminals powerfully influential sanctuary in the United States.

Chapter/Lesson Five: explores several credible hypotheses about the assassination of President John Fitzgerald Kennedy,  22 November 1963, which I have long regarded as our nation's date of death3, not the least because the murder of the president  was the first slaying in an 11-year, 13-victim homicide spree that in retrospect was unmistakably intended to clear the way for the final nazification of the nation. (In addition to our dead president, the martyrs in question  – say their names – are  Malcolm X;  Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.; Sen. Robert Francis Kennedy; Fred Hampton and Mark Clark; Allison Beth Krause, Jeffrey Glenn Miller, Sandra Lee Scheuer and William Knox Schroeder; Phillip Lafayette Gibbs and James Earl Green; and finally Karen Silkwood on 13 November 1974.)

Chapter/Lesson Six: discusses three logical, evidence-supported hypotheses about the murder of our president. Sources include Michele Metta’s book, Accomplishing Jim Garrison’s Investigation on the Trail of the Assassins of JFK, which suggests the Nazi Otto Skorzeny may have been the so-called Umbrella Man that day in Dallas; the revelations in the late Mae Brussell’s vital documentation of "The Nazi Connection to the John F. Kennedy Assassination"; and Abel Cohen’s excellent overview, “Killing Kennedys: Secret Team,” which defines the assassination as (another) expression of the USian Ruling Class’s fanatical yearning for absolute power -- precisely what motivated the Bankers’ Plot.

Chapter/Lesson Seven: evaluates Brussell's relentlessly censored  "Operation Chaos: the CIA’s War Against the Sixties Counter-Culture" and explores the probability our Masters  secretly exterminated dozens -- perhaps hundreds -- of additional presumed subversives including several cultural figures, among them the Taliesin-caliber pagan rock-poet Tim Buckley and the singer Janis Joplin

Chapter/Lesson Eight: summarizes the six decades of ever-more-conclusive evidence the “Democratic” (sic) Party’s collaboration in the assassination of the president and the 11-year murder-spree reduced it to its present-day role as nothing more than the Republican Party’s Fifth Column. The primary topic is contextual: the ever-expanding evidence terminal climate change is deliberately sustained ecogenocide; subtopics necessarily  include white male supremacy, imperialism, "welfare reform," the "neoliberal" necessity of eternal war, the 2000 presidential election, 9/11, the Patriot Act, Trump and ChristoNazism.

Chapter/Lesson Nine: describes how now, nearly a half-century after their 11 years of murder, our Masters have grown so bold they make no secret of their transformation of the United States into the de facto successor of the Third Reich -- its final form a global slave plantation rendered inescapable by technology -- never mind their triumph is already destroying the habitable world. 

That's why – if we are to have even a snowball-in-hell’s chance of survival – we must somehow find the courage to acknowledge what our Masters are doing to us. They are deliberately maximizing terminal climate change; they have already completed their pre-planned conversion of social media into a total lifetime surveillance system against which there is no possible defense, thereby making even minimal resistance impossible for as long as electronic technology prevails; and now they are guaranteeing themselves and their descendants permanent retention of power by their near-infinite wealth and its self-perpetuating monopoly of all weaponize-able technologies. Thus even were the necessarily global scale of successful organizing still technologically possible, our Masters' unbreakable monopoly on the methodology of terrorism would guarantee our defeat.

It is one of the greater ironies of history a freedom-loving people are enslaved by the very technology they embraced in the name of liberation. Again in retrospect, I can no longer doubt computers, cell phones and their social-media offspring were all  designed to be our species' first-ever set of willfully self-imposed shackles, even as these total-surveillance devices were pimped as instruments of ultimate self-empowerment. As to what sort of dystopia must necessarily follow betrayal of such terminal magnitude, we need only look to SCOTUS and the  smirking, viciously envious re-imposition of mandatory chastity implicit in its  ChristoNazi re-enslavement of women.  

Here we also witness the terrible fragility of genuinely progressive change: a single hydrogen  bomb dropped on Petrograd in 1917 would have  exterminated the entire Russian revolution; given the counter-revolutionary invasions of Russia c. 1918-1925, there's no doubt had thermonuclear weaponry then existed, our Masters would have at very the least employed their Neutron Bomb to incinerate all the rebels but preserve Petrograd's factories for profiteering and save its aristocratic architecture to sustain despotic gratification.4  More likely -- given the violently fanatical Hitlerite magnitude of rejection, fear, hatred and oppression any suggested sharing of material wealth invariably provokes from the entire global Ruling Class -- had our Masters the limitless power they possess today, they'd have vaporized Petrograd and everyone in it with a single final-solution H-bomb. Which tragically is no exaggeration; these days our Masters have the capability to track us all from birth, to detain those of us they suspect might prove troublesome, to confine us all on some island known to be doomed by rising seas and execute us all with a single nuke, secure in the certainty terminal climate change will quickly obliterate any evidence of the atrocity.  

No matter; with modern civilization's extinction now guaranteed by our Masters’ wanton squandering of our Mother Earth’s resources, any hope for change beyond the ever-worsening circumstances of the present is delusional. And given how we are now under surveillance as inescapable as that of any rat maze, activism is defeated -- note the fate of Occupy -- long before it grows enough strength to become effective. Thus, ever more often, activism's only result is the intensification of our Masters' savagery.

A cowardly statement? In some circumstances, unquestionably; but we are neither the already legendary defenders of the Soviet motherland or equally legendary French resistance fighters, which is merely to say the vast majority of us are not combat-secure in the terrible certainty dying to preserve humanitarianism is never a  squandering of our lives. Neither are we suicide bombers or kamikaze pilots; that's why, like Sun Tzu,  we regard backing away  from obviously hopeless circumstances as wisdom rather than cowardice: specifically  the wisdom to recognize the necessity of strategic withdrawal and so differentiate it from retreat or surrender. Our Masters' methodical destruction of Occupy -- confined  by their nazified authority, trashed relentlessly by their mass media and  sundered from within by their deliberately induced "neoliberal" culture of fanatically greedy self-obsession -- proves effective resistance is not just futile but impossible. In this context, the best we can do is note the antidote to inevitable defeat implicit in the ursine example of winter hibernation; we too must hibernate,  re-emerging only if and when times and circumstance prove advantageous. So, it seems, does life itself behave. Though we must also recognize our Masters have already been so ecogenocidally deadly in their misogynistic rape of our Mother Earth, she will never again be able to support any sort of technologically  advanced civilization.

And our Masters now repeatedly prove their infinite cunning, ironically by the same hypocritical deceptiveness  their wholly owned Abrahamic religions denounce as "diabolical"; they divide us by brandishing ideological conflicts to camouflage their behavioral unity -- the undeniable fact that, capitalist or socialist, they are all earth-destroyers; that's why, in what we  should take as an ultimate example of our Masters' limitless malevolence, the dynamics of the global (i.e., imperial) economy are deliberately structured to allow no alternatives. Whether as the ChristoNazis whose lifetime SCOTUS appointments are now transforming the (former) United States into the Third Reich’s ecogenocidal successor, or as the state capitalists who claim "socialism" justifies their own brands of ecogenocidal tyranny, their ever-expanding technological superiority has made them all effectively divine -- and therefore infinitely evil. So they intend to remain forever -- that is, until the society founded and sustained by their purposely oppressive technologies is no more, the collapse of which will like as not also bring about the final "better-dead-than-humanitarian" extermination of our entire species.

Lastly let us all note how our Masters' re-emphasis on thermonuclear terror  tells us they believe they've now bunkered themselves to guaranteed invincibility no matter what horrors they inflict on the rest of us.

Thus freed of all restraint, our Masters have become as sadistic as their Abrahamic god, which under patriarchy5 is ever-more-obviously the not-so-secret behavioral model of every aristocrat and Ruling-Class vassal on this doomed planet.
_____________________________

1"Masters" is the only honest term for the all-powerful tyrants whose seemingly infinite wealth provides the lavish, post-Citizens-United bribery by which they have seized absolute control of all elected politicians and therefore of all USian politics, federal, state and local. Their ongoing refusal to allow their political puppets to enact effective measures against terminal climate change,  the Covid pandemic and runaway inflation proves they are deliberately financing  ecogenocide -- that is, the simultaneous destruction of the environment to make it unsuitable for human life combined with radical reduction of the 99 Percent and permanent enslavement of the survivors. (Twelve years after the fact, Keith Olbermann's analysis of the dire consequences of the Citizens United decision -- included in the above link -- is  proven by subsequent events to be 100 percent pure prophecy.)      

2USia” and “USian” because I refuse to participate in our Masters' theft of an entire double-continent's name to title their Empire; the present-day United States occupies less than a quarter of the Americas, only 9,629,091 square kilometers of the continent's 42,320,985-square-kilometer landmass,  which strongly suggests the naming is (secretly?) a statement of intended conquest.   

3If enough of us survive our Masters’ ecogenocide to sustain the study of history, the murder of President John Fitzgerald Kennedy on 22 November 1963 will undoubtedly be regarded as the date of the USian Empire’s death, much as the ouster of Romulus Augustus on 4 September 476 is regarded as the death-date for the Western Roman Empire.

4I linked to a "survivalist" website for the Neutron Bomb discussion because it was the only source I could find that exemplifies both the relevant science and the terror it inflicts.

5Ultimately, everything that oppresses us – Abrahamic religion, imperialism, feudalism, capitalism, nazism, plutocracy, ecogenocide – is fathered by patriarchy, the compulsory advent of which ended the cooperative ethos that governed our species until about six thousand years ago.

___________________________

(Next: how our Masters' Big Lies of "progress" and an historical "arc...toward justice" seduced us into ecogenocidal ruin.)
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LB/29 June-14 July 2022

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