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Is a new world possible? Open Thread

Posted on October 2, 2006
Filed Under Uncategorized |

Dear Friends and Thinkers,

If you have not seen it, please watch the fifteen minute, extended trailer to Aaron Russo’s America: From Freedom to Fascism. It is a stark wakeup call for those who still believe we live in a free country and, a call to action for all Americans to take back control of our country.

I meet lots of people and organizations through this little website of mine, and one of them is Dave Stratman, one of the founding members of a group here in Boston called New Democracy. New Democracy is a group formed to “put revolution for real democracy on the public agenda,” and is based on the general principles developed in Dave’s exellent book, We CAN Change the World: The Real Meaning of Everyday Life (one of the five-star books in my bibliography). In his book, Dave argues that capitalism and communism are just flip sides of the same coin, and neither of these undemocratic systems offers a promising sustainable future to the world’s people.

To create a new, more humane and peaceful world, we desperately need to challenge elite power and create a democratic alternative. A new society is possible, but only based on a new understanding that sees ordinary people, rather than economic or political elites, as the source of the good in society and the source of a new world.

Below is New Democracy’s Statement of Principles. We would appreciate your thoughtful input and feedback on the Statement and on how we can move towards making it a reality.

Thank you,
Michael


NEW DEMOCRACY
STATEMENT OF PRINCIPLES

[newdemocracyworld.org]
.

We live under a dictatorship of the wealthy. Most people want a better world. We can only achieve a new world by openly declaring our goals:

1. We are for revolution to create a real democracy. We call on people everywhere to end elite rule and to create real democracy based on principles of solidarity and equality. Democracy means ordinary people shaping all of society with their shared values. It means people together freely deciding their goals and how they will cooperate to achieve them. This includes transforming the goals, organization, and control of work to create an economy where the productive wealth of society is used to meet the human needs of all.

2. Revolution to achieve real democracy is necessary and possible. Revolution is necessary because the problems we face are rooted in a system of elite rule that controls people by attacking relations of solidarity and equality. These problems cannot be solved without creating a new society. Revolution is possible because the struggle of ordinary people to humanize the world is the force that drives history, and because most people want the new world that only revolution can bring.

3. Our confidence in the possibility of revolution comes from our confidence in ordinary people. Capitalism, communism, and socialism have all led to societies in which an elite holds the power. None of these systems is democratic. Communism and socialism failed as alternatives to capitalism because they accepted capitalism’s view that economic development is the basis of human development, that self-interest is the primary human motivation, and that ordinary people are a passive mass or a dangerous problem. The basis of a new society is a new, positive view of people.

4. The everyday struggle of ordinary people to humanize the world creates the wealth of society and whatever positive human relationships exist within it. Most people in their everyday lives struggle against a culture based on competition and exploitation. They strive in their families and workplaces to create relationships based on equality and commitment to each other. People’s everyday lives have revolutionary meaning.

5. Class struggle is a struggle over what values should shape society, what goals it should pursue, and who should control it. It is a struggle over what it means to be a human being. The values of the capitalist class are inequality, competition, and control from above. The values of the working class are equality, solidarity, and democracy. The goal of working class struggle is to transform the whole world with its values. The most personal acts of kindness and the most public acts of class war are part of the same struggle to humanize the world.

6. The revolutionary movement must not be based on politicians or union officials or business structures or the courts but on ordinary people themselves as the driving force and leaders of change.

7. Revolutions are built on hope. The revolutionary movement will unite ordinary men and women of every race and nationality in a movement in which our confidence in our ability to change the world comes from our confidence in each other.

——————————————————————————–

New Democracy works for democratic revolution.
Write New Democracy at P.O. Box 427, Boston, MA 02130.
Call: John Spritzler, 617-566-9637 or Dave Stratman, 617-524-4073.
E-mail: Newdem@aol.com.
Webpage: http://www.newdemocracyworld.org.

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Comments

75 Comments so far
  1. Turk October 2, 2006 9:41 pm

    High ideals are expressed here. I, along with many Americans believe we need some fundamental change in our government but, as with all change we should be very careful what we are asking for. I believe that the revolution they speak of begins at home, so the word ‘world’ should be removed. America needs to return to a sane and sensible role model for the world, which we have strayed from. The following paragraph is the beginning of a paper I wrote a long time ago. It addresses change where we, as a country, can change ourselves with a grass-fire movement, not particularly a revolution:

    “The constitution of the United States is one of the wisest documents ever conceived by men concerning the government of a nation. It is constantly scrutinized for pertinence to current times, yet at its core it is timeless.
    The authors of the constitution, while the wisest of men, could not have envisioned the rapid pace of our modern world, the development of electronic instantaneous world wide media or, the heavy influence the worlds financiers have on turning elections to their favor. Americans are continually bombarded with election cycles and all of the big money hoopla that accompanies them. There has been much bally-hooing by various politicians over the years about the need to fix the system, but it never really gets fixed. Elected officials spend more of their time electioneering than doing the job we elected them to do in the first place. The president spends more time on the hand-shaking trail than he does clearly thinking about and planning for the future of the citizens he works for. It seems like we just elect a president then, as soon as he gets his cabinet appointed; he is back out campaigning for his next election. We need to remove as much incentive for corruption and under the table dealing that we possibly can by; fundamentally changing the way our elected officials are elected and then empowered once they get to Washington. First, it is time we changed the presidential election cycle and some of the rules of engagement in campaigning for a sitting president and his appointees. Second, congress needs to be reformed and restructured away from its country club atmosphere.”

    The paper includes specific ideas but, I did not include them here to keep my tendency toward long-winded-ness to a minimum.

  2. Geoff Pearson October 2, 2006 10:17 pm

    This is pure socialist dogma straight from the Lenin era.

    I live in New Zealand & I can tell you that Socialism doesn’t work; not even so-called Democratic Socialism. If you want proof just take a look at this country & observe it’s relentless slide into obscurity under the current ruling party.

    Geoff Pearson

  3. Moneylender October 3, 2006 12:14 am

    There are a lot of people out there who will agree with the sentiments you have expressed, those are the very ideals Huchi Min expressed when he took power. The powers that be did not want Vietnam to be a true democracy, the rest is history.

    You cannot create any fair society without addressing the question of MONEY SUPPLY. As long as we allow Private Banks to create money out of NOTHING as a exponential compound interest bearing DEBT we will all remain enslaved from cradle to the grave.

    Money will go into manufacture of Arms which will be used against the people to suppress them, press will be used to peddle falsehoods, elected representatives will be bought off from creating a true democracy.

    Once the Money Supply is in the hands of the people, where the elected representatives are the sole distributer of the funds for productive capacity that will benefit everyone, then you may be on a far better world

  4. Bernard October 3, 2006 1:38 am

    Capitalism has worried many who have thought about (and participated in) its consequences. I have been in business for over 30 years and ‘enjoyed’ the fruits of it, however the results of it are not good. I have experienced the results of Communism in East Europe for some years now and saw what Salazar did in Portugal, Ceausescu in Romania, Tito in Yugoslavia, Bush in the USA, Mugabe in Zimbabwe. So besides East Asia, which I have visited many times, I have observed and done business in a variety of countries and systems and ‘post’ systems.

    The ideals contained in the ‘Statement’ are idealistic and will simply morph into another hybrid of a system allowing Greed once again to enter whatever ‘fair’ outcomes are envisioned.” Animal Farm” is a fact of human nature and that will not change the ‘Elite’ via another well conceived political system, the root is human nature. The notion that you have ‘ordinary’ people to serve the people in courts is just ignoring history, what of the courts at the start of the Mao rule in China, the ad-hoc courts of Africa, the peoples Courts in Communist countries, USA detention with no trial going on now. No! the promoter of this Ideal political revolution must not have travelled the world and lived in many other parts of the world, he has yet to understand what Human nature is and does.

    The ordinary people that are idealised are just as cruel and unconcerned as the ruling class, the distinction with class is not the cause, although I do not support it, but we humans and our avarice and greed are. The recent decimation of peoples of Central Africa by their fellow human beings knew no distinction between religion — Muslims Christians and Animists were all involved. Tribal leaders and elected politicians all have the same tendency. What we really lack today is Honest leadership across the world, and that might also be simply too much to expect.

    So David Stratman would serve his fellow humans beings better to join the Democrats in what is a ‘Putrid’ political system in the USA and change it from the inside with honest political concern for his fellow Americans, that would be a start. Also 90 % of Americans could not care less what happens to those in other parts of the world let alone with their own country and neighbours, as long as their credit cards and unemployment/social/Medicare aid keeps them alive. The American Dream has become a nightmare, so please don’t export any more of it, the world is unfortunately saturated with it in film and TV sold and exported to most of the world. It is furthering the greed, of which you have so much of, in the minds of the ‘ordinary’ people who have endured their own revolutions and have yet no good alternatives in place, stupidly thinking that your USA way of life will be a good replacement.

    So ‘ordinary people’ Be careful what you wish for, you will just once again be robbed of your most basic of human rights.

  5. Dave King October 3, 2006 1:43 am

    Appealing, but utopian ideals. We can only work through the institutions and social machinery we have. Wresting control of these institutions from cultural, political and business elites is the problem. We have to make our votes count in elections and look for good candidates to support. We can join political parties and try and make a difference that way. Easier said than done I know but I think grass roots action could work if people get riled up enough.

  6. Peter October 3, 2006 4:09 am

    I am a superrationalist. I write about love and nature because we need it, we are as moneymakers, analysts of society not used to these words, they are important and I am not afraid to put it in my analysis. They are THE MOST IMPORTANT THINGS IN ANY ECONOMIC ANALYSIS AT THE MOMENT.

    1. Democracies don’t work, this is true. When 50% of the voters are women, 50% is younger then 40, 50% has an IQ lower then 100 you can wait for failure. It WILL come, always, until we say goodbye to this failure and start an autocracy of wise men, all men with IQ over 100 for example can vote.

    2. The MAIN problem is, we are estranged from nature, we need nature. We have to live in nature to be calm and healthy, this is just rational, not dreamy bullshit. This has to change.

    3. Another problem is relations — MAN, WOMAN. When a man is the head of the family and the woman takes care of children all is well. Now with woman overshouting themselves and trying to be bossy until they cannot take it anymore and collapse and go in to therapy and ruin their lives and the lives of man and children there will be no happy society. Borderline, depressions, it will all get worse and worse. Russia is the example of what happens when children don’t get motherlove, a lot of psychopaths, although they are people just like us, don´t get me wrong, we will also have more and more people that feel estranged from others and canot love.

    4. Another extremely big problem is the parasites with government and all other institutions like banks. This also comes from 3 because we have all been taught to act like woman, SMILE, DON’T GIVE CRITICISM, DON’T BE HARD TO PEOPLE, this is how things get worse and worse and worse. Instead of working for yourselves you work for parasites.

    5. Europe is extremely feminine. I live there, we are extremely weak. China is a man society, Russia is a man society, Iran is a man society. They will have big economic problems, just like we will have economic problems but different. They will attack the US and Europe because there mood will be extremely agressive, just like ours, probably around 2010, a little sooner or later, maybe in 2008 when things go wrong with the Chinese olympics.

    6. 1890, 1930, 1970, 2010. 2010 will be like 1890, look up on Internet how it was then, only combined with WW III.

    Conclusion, society as it is now makes people unhappy and this will go on until WW III, after this we will probably be closer to nature and live happy lives, the ones that are left. Solving all this in a peaceful way is probably impossible.

  7. Bill October 3, 2006 4:25 am

    As Milton Friedman said, a country cannot be a welfare
    state and have open borders.

    The first constitutional change I would make would be to end “birthright citizenship”. Congrats to New Zealand, Ireland, Britain and Australia for having done this already.

    I live in CA and our schools, hospitals, and roads have been overwhelmed by millions of illegal aliens. Until this changes, progress will be difficult.

  8. Sapiens October 3, 2006 4:29 am

    Wow, impressive as to how many of us are working to the same end.

    http://sapiensbootcamp2006.pbwiki.com

  9. Sapiens October 3, 2006 5:13 am

    The Secret and Reason of America’s Great Wealth…

    Since I was a small child I wondered why there is such great poverty in the world, while others lived in great luxury. As I grew into an adolescent and then an adult, the answer still dodged my mind.

    Slowly and through great study and edification I was able to piece the answer to my question. I traveled the world and saw how some countries, although being neighbors, within the same geography and only divided by an imaginary line for a border the population of one country was extremely poor and the other very wealthy.

    The answer to my question proved elusive for many years, yet I would get hints to the answer here and there. Then, about the age of twenty four years, the first major break through came. I figured out that the reason that some societies were very wealthy and other very poor stemmed from their Judicial System. Yes, the pillar that supported the great wealth of a rich nation was a fair and just Judicial System.

    Although this was a major breakthrough, it was not the complete answer; there was something more, something more fundamental than just the wealthy nation’s way of dispensing justice as the answer. Again, I headed to search for the rest of the answer to the puzzle.

    Within a few years and with concentrated effort came the final breakthrough. The foundation of the pillar that supported the wealth of rich nations was the basic and fundamental belief of its people.

    What is that basic and fundamental belief, you ask?

    Well, the basic and fundamental belief is this: All beings are created with the equal and inalienable right to exist, but not all are created with the same abilities.

    Being that the basic and fundamental belief; how does a fair and just Judicial System becomes the pillar supporting a rich nation’s great wealth?

    Simple, by resolving disputes and controversies in a fair and just way, peace can be maintained. The expectation that disputes and controversies will be resolved in a fair and just way leads to certainty, and certainty allows you to plan in a long term basis. By planning in long term basis, you can invest and by investing you can be reasonably certain you can make a profit.

    But let us go back a bit to the basic and fundamental belief or principle: All beings are created with the equal and inalienable right to exist, but not all are created with the same abilities.

    What does it mean in practical effect? Well, think about this: If you and somebody else have a controversy or dispute, both of you know that you have the same and equal right to exist but not of equal abilities. He or she can’t demean your existence but he or she may be smarter or dumber than you. So the key to solve your controversy or dispute in a fair and just manner is for a third party to review the facts and governing laws in an objective and impartial way. Then, that third party can render judgment in a fair and just manner. So, in effect it becomes crucial for you to know that justice will be served by holding you responsible and accountable to your word. So be careful to what you agree to do or not to do, this is where the Golden Rule comes in for guidance: Do unto others as you would have them do unto you: Do not do to others as you would not have them do unto you. But I will leave that for another post.

    Well, that’s it. The reason America is so wealthy is that for most of its existence it has being governed by and its people adherence to the Rule of Law.

    -Sapiens

  10. khill October 3, 2006 5:20 am

    Democracy is overrated and the U.S. didn’t become the world’s temporary ruler because of freedom. Like China today, the U.S. had stategic advantages that put the wind to it’s back. And there will be no revolution until there is an evolution. Man is going to experience the very real threat of extinction as “Peak Everything” takes hold and a mass die off begins. If we survive and don’t uterly destroy the planet we can hope man will evolve into higher beings and build institutions that encourage our better tendencies. So I say don’t waste your resources of time, money and energy on revolution. Survival and wealth preservation are the main focus for this generation and there are too few who understand this and are able to achieve it. The stuff is about to hit the fan and dreams of revolution and meaningful change are both too early and too late.

  11. Larry October 3, 2006 5:30 am

    He states only values not a plan or a program. If not capitalism then what, if not democracy then what?

    “The goal of working class struggle is to transform the whole world with its values” …

    These are just words without actionalable plans.

  12. Dave October 3, 2006 5:38 am

    This utopian pipe dream is in fantasy land. Human nature will prevent any sort of total equality. People who work hard and want to enjoy the fruits of their labor will take umbrage at sharing their “wealth” with the lazy and the shiftless. And there are plenty of those people.

    Technological innovation will come to a screeching halt as there is no incentive for inventing things. This will only work in an agrarian society, i.e. communes.

    Since there is no real plan put forth by these pie-in-the-sky utopians, I can safely assume that it is just a mechanism to draw in monetary donations from the unsuspecting. I have now cancelled my recent subscription to bull not bull, since every investment thesis from Nystrom is now suspect.

  13. dm October 3, 2006 5:48 am

    to whom it may concern: you must know that each individual must take responsibility for the society in which we live. each person is important and plays a part, whether rich or poor.

    the main problem is that the poor have no desire nor time to work on shaping our society (as a general rule), in a way that the rich have done. however, they still shape society. anyone who thinks that the rich are insulated from the poor are sadly mistaken. because of the leadership of certain segments of society — teachers, youth leaders, churhes, etc. social services, there are fewer criminals in our country. the united states has suffered from a moral decline and this is something in which we all have a part.
    thank you, dm

  14. Peter October 3, 2006 6:18 am

    Pffffffffffffff. So many opinions. Maybe you should broadly categorize them and have an opinion poll?????

  15. Simian October 3, 2006 6:23 am

    I agree with the principles in the document. This great nation is a product of revolution. Revolutions are possible. We are living proof of that!

    But do we want “real democracy?” What is the difference between that and “mob rule?” Look at what we have now - sociopaths and megalomaniacs in the upper reaches of both business and government. The problem is NOT that these people — “elites” as you call them — are somehow different from “common people.” This is just putting labels on people, and is neither helful, nor true.

    There are good people among the wealthy elite, just as there are rotten eggs among the common masses. At the moment, it is the sociopaths on top of the pyramid who make life crap for the rest of us by manipulating us for their own gain. One way to create a better world is simply not to participate in the farce being staged in the name of “freedom”. Opt out, or don’t buy in in the first place. This is not a choice for everyone. Many people are happy with their 9-5 job, and their beer and televsion in the evenings. Life is easy. Not everyone aspires to such high ideals.

    Capitalism is not the problem. Look at the Animal kingdom - I dare say there is no such capitalistic structure within the Animal Kingdom. Our closest relatives - the apes - are a heirarchical society dominated through violence by Alpha males. How is our society any different? The leadership of this country — both in business AND government — is just that pack of Alpha males screwing the rest of us. They devise their clever plans to make war, send our young boys off to die, and somehow profit from it. We’ve been here before so many times! Before Iraq there were many Iraqs.

    Capitalism is not the problem. Capitalism is beautiful, but it needs limits. Capitalism must be tempered by morality and constrained by a fair and just government. It must be taught that Capitalism has moral rules, otherwise we are back to the law of the Jungle.

    The real problem for the “common man” is to keep the sociopaths among us from ever gaining positions of power - whether in business, government, the church or whereever. Unfortunately, sociopaths and megalomanics are naturally drawn to positions of power, and the common man is naturally disposed to follow, not to lead.

    I think most people would agree that the majority of people are just, kind and good. But it only takes a few bad apples to fuck it up for the rest of us. The real problem, I think, is how to identify and get rid of those few bad apples before their cancer spreads to all of society.

  16. Rich October 3, 2006 6:27 am

    Abolish secret societies, make citizens demonstrate some knowledge of issues before they qualify to vote, cap wealth at $1 billion (100% thereafter, yeah I know it sounds like socialism but you have to try to put something in place that stops a handful of people owning the world - anyone should be able to live happily on $1 billion!), abolish tax free foundations and institutions (this is where the elite peddle their power and influence out of sight of the general populace and the government), limit the size of government (its growing like a weed), massively reform campaign contributions, kick all lobbyists off of capitol hill (there are 24,000 of them), abolish the shadow government (NSA, and other secret agencies need to see the light of day).

    All of these things can be done within the framework of the existing system, but would be difficult.

    Perhaps after “Peak Humanity” (hehe) and Die Off we can institute them!

    Cheers Rich

  17. George October 3, 2006 6:41 am

    Rich is right - all of these things can be accomplished within the framework of our existing system. This being said, why do we need a revolution?

    We don’t need a revolution, we just need participation and reform in the system we’ve got.

  18. Moneylender October 3, 2006 6:51 am

    I left a comment earlier and it was posted.
    Suddenly it has been deleted.
    So much for preaching democracy

  19. Mike October 3, 2006 6:53 am

    Aaron Russo’s America: From Freedom to Fascism is a must see for all Americans.

    Democracy = Slavery
    51%, or for that matter even 99% telling the remainder what they can and cannot do is not freedom. I yield my unalienable rights to no group…no matter how well intentioned. I find it rather amusing that in a thread that started off mentioning, “From Freedom to Fascism,” I didn’t come across the word individual until I got to the 13th post.

  20. Michael Nystrom October 3, 2006 7:02 am

    Hey Moneylender - see comment #3 - is that the one you’re talking about? I do not delete comments.

    Michael Nystrom
    Editor
    http://www.bullnotbull.com

  21. Sapiens October 3, 2006 7:06 am

    Abolish bequests and inheritances.

  22. Stan October 3, 2006 7:06 am

    Well , it is a lot of misunderstanding, 1. capitalism is not a political system, it’s an economic system, 2. What you have in the USA and most industrialized countries is not capitalism, it’s an oligarchy. 3. That capitalism and communism are just flip sides of the same coin is nonsense. I know it very well , I spent 30 years of my life in communist land and 30 years in Switzerland.

    Capitalism (free markets) combined with democracy could work, at least better as any other system, but probably not worldwide (globalization), there are too many differences, the problem is, USA is no democracy, you only have the best congress you can ( for lots of millions $) buy and the US Constitution is only piece of paper. The only system I know which deserves to be named democracy is the Swiss direct democracy, not perfect, but the best available.

    Forget your dreams, they are naïve.

  23. Nolan October 3, 2006 8:01 am

    Thanks again for the discussion. Very worthwhile.

    From what I see, I expect that a major problem here is very primitive responses. Consider what happens when one bird in a flock becomes distressed or one elephant or one bee or one baboon. All the others are given to fight or flight mechanisms.

    Homo sapiens are social animals. At times the reptilian minds rules supreme. Those in power seem to understand this much better than those who wish to challenge that power. We hear from George Lakoff that we need to “frame” our words and phrases much more effectively. In my estimation this is far too little, far too late. We need to address very basic human needs.

    Rather than reason with the public, those who would hope to serve the public and promote democracy, unfortunately must stoop to using the same tactics employed by the current power brokers. Sound the alarm and demonstrate in very graphic terms just how threatening and dangerous the current style of government is. Don’t mince words. We are dealing with traitors, demagogues, and propagandists. People need to see how dangerous this is. We need to call a spade a spade and stop using kid gloves.

    The techniques are not new. Any fascist regime used such tactics in the past and is doing so today. So show the results. Show the parrallels. Show what is happening right now today. The numbers are simply overwhelming, but they are being ignored. It is not enough to say that someone is lying. We must see where this leads and where it is leading today. We must connect the dots. Look at the lies; look at the results. Look at the stealing; look at the results. Look at all the killing and see the results. Simply show what is going on.

    Who benefits from all of the corruption? Follow the money. And then show what this kind of behavior meant to the public in the past and today as well.

    Notice how Democratic politicians collapsed during the recent detainee and torture legislation. Why? Because they can read their constituency. They know that they need to look as though they are tough on anti-terrorism. But what those constituents clearly do not see is how dangerous this behavior is. Rather than solving any problem it dramatically exacerbates problems and creates all kinds of new, ugly and dangerous problems. This legislation is not safe and effective. It is very destructive and DANGEROUS.

    Further, the legislation is not even the issue. By bringing such legislation to the Congress, the power brokers scare the public and find new opportunities to manipulate the public’s thinking. Back to the reptilian response. Back to the lemings running over the cliff.

    Additionally, those who would challenge the authority need to anticipate the tactics and then scream bloody murder when the tactics are being used. Further it is very important to alert the public in advance to be watching for the use of these tactics before the power brokers truck out their next gambit.

    Does anyone remember Ronald Reagan in debate with Jimmy Carter in the presidential debates of 1982? What did Reagan say that became so powerful? “There he goes again.” Remember? And so those who wish to challenge the power structure today must do the very same thing. We know that 9/11 is going to used over and over again. We know that stories about terrorists are going to be used as well. So track this stuff and point out what has followed previously when the game was played and then tell Americans that they must be on the lookout for more of this dangerous behavior.

    Do you want safety? Then stop the dispicable power manipulations. Do you want real prosperity? Then stop the corruption.

    Another absurd notion is that those who would challenge the power brokers have no alternatives. What has worked in the past? Torture? Were Americans known for using torture in WWII? Rendition? Did the Eisenhower administration kidnap people on foreign soil? Would even a conservative like Barry Goldwater do such things? What does William F. Buckley think of the current administration?

    Were there no enemies during the cold war? Did our government use “Predator” UAVs to obliterate suspects on roads in foreign countries without first seeking permission from the government to even be in the foreign country? How do the people in the foreign country react to such behavior? How did our own people react in America in the past? Remember our patriotic forefathers?

    Alternatives? Think of how effective the Marshall plan was a compare it with what is being done in Iraq. Think of what happened to war profiteers during the Truman administration. Why? And what is happening today? The power brokers are cashing in big time. The numbers are there. Why not point this out?

    Why not point out how dangerous all of this is?

  24. Sapiens October 3, 2006 8:02 am

    Stan Says:
    October 3rd, 2006 at 7:06 am
    forget your dreams, they are naïve.

    Said the ignorant.

    Ignorance is what allows you to be exploited. The legal systems as its stands is now obsolete. With 7 Billion plus people on this Earth something will give; mutual accord or mutual extinction.

    -Sapiens

  25. Frank Breckenridge October 3, 2006 8:58 am

    I saw Russo’s film here in Spokane 6 mos. ago not knowing how “privileged” I was. People are only seeing it now in other places much larger than Spokane.

    Russo’s film didn’t make me angry it made me depressed. But then depression is just anger turned inward. I think I am too old to get mad anymore because I doubt seriously that anything can be done. We are doomed!

    Plus I was just thinking yesterday, while weeding in the yard (an excellent occupation to put your mind in “neutral”), that I am not sure if the U.S.A. is worth trying to save. Over the past few years, as I have become more and more educated about America’s sordid past, going back 200 years, I am beginning to wonder if there is any era in which this country “got it right”.

    Whether it was the genocidal war against the Native Americans, or the wars of imperial conquest against Mexico, et al., or Prohibition, or the McCarthy persecutions, or Truman’s ignoring Japan’s desire to surrender so he could demonstrate of explosive-metal bomb to Stalin, or the unsolved Kennedy assassination, leading inexorably to the lies about 9/11–Why would I want to help America? It has been too rotten too long. I just wish it was not so damned difficult to emigrate.

  26. Stan October 3, 2006 9:10 am

    to Sapiens:
    well, reading Your thoughts here and on Your homepage I only can say HA HA HA, every small child in eastern Europe would laugh into dead, You really have no idea about the homo sapiens, You remind me of some fanatic communist I have met in my life.

  27. muleskinner October 3, 2006 9:25 am

    A few thoughts from George Orwell.

    Please, don’t be offended.

  28. ronandreas October 3, 2006 9:29 am

    It is hard to have hope at this point, but I guess you have to start somewhere. When people wake up to the lies they will take these ideas (real democracy etc…) seriously. Sadly, I sense that the human trait of believing those with authority is overwhelming for many of us. An economic crisis will create a new political landscape, however the infrastructure of totalitarian rule has been put in place.

  29. Turk October 3, 2006 9:33 am

    I think there is a tendency to ‘throw out the baby with the bathwater’ for many people. The nature of any government is that it will have blind supporters, blind defamers and the rest of us poor confused souls in the middle.Support and detraction are often split down economic lines. This means that a government must have compassion for the less wealthy and cut them some breaks, even welfare when needed. It is allowing people to dwell in total poverty in the face of all the ‘haves’ that breeds real, bloody revolution. One only has to look to the success of radical Islam in the poor regions of the world to see how this works. Our U.S. government is still the best but, the problem as I see it is; how to keep corrupting influences under control and, where to draw the line at the empowerment of certain government officials to act on behalf of the people. Here are some of the ideas to change our current U.S.federal government system for the better that I floated in an old paper:
    First, it is time we changed the presidential election cycle and some of the rules of engagement in campaigning for a sitting president and his appointees.
    (1)We need to eliminate the “re-election” campaign, yet we need to be sure that a good president has enough time in office to make a difference. The constitution needs to be changed to elect the president for six years, then out. Six years in office will give a good president more than enough time to run the country on behalf of the American people. Impeachment is the option to throw a bum out of office. No re-election campaigning will be needed. (2)During a sitting presidents final year in office (year six) the president and all members of the cabinet and other presidential appointees to the executive branch will be barred, by law, from campaigning, fund raising or in any way using the influence of their office to help any other aspiring candidates get elected. (3) A newly elected president must make fifty percent of his appointments from at least two political parties other than his/hers. (4) No siblings, sons, daughters or spouses of a previous president shall be allowed to become president or vice president. Dynasties or the appearance of them have no place in the white house. Only monarchies, communists, and other dictatorial regimes have relatives take over. (5) Except for retaliation of 120 day duration, the power to attack anywhere with military power of any kind will be authorized only by a one hundred percent sign off by the president, the chairman of and all of the joint chiefs, the secretary of defense, the vice president, the majority of congress and the majority of the governors of the states.
    Secondly, congress needs fundamental changes to its current country club atmosphere. (1) term limits of two terms for all. (2) Take away the power for congress to give itself pay raises and benefits. Retirement benefits have no place in the portfolio of elected representatives. Do away with all retirement/ lifetime health benefits. Congress and the senate can contribute to their own IRA’s, and upon leaving, can find a new job with insurance like most of America. Pay raises and changes to benefits for members will be decided along pay for performance guidelines by a national vote. (3) Make all gifts, of any kind, illegal, by law, with substantial penalty for givers and receivers. (4) Give members of congress no more than thirty days of vacation per year. The rest of the time, they are to be in Washington DC, working for their constituents. There is no need to make excessive trips to the home state in this day of instant communication. (5) Require mandatory, random drug and alcohol testing during each congressman/ senators time in office. No more ‘rehab’ way out for perverts and other deviants. (6) Along with these changes, we should pay members of the house $200,000 per year salary, more than ample compensation for what we expect them to do on our behalf. Salary will be frozen at this level until a national vote deems a raise is appropriate based on the merits of the service to the American people. All raises will be limited to a cost of living increase of the same amount as the governments reported inflation rates.

  30. Rich October 3, 2006 9:35 am

    Hey!

    Of course a New World is possible, in fact we just entered it!!

    The DOW just reached an all time new high…..we are now officially in unchartered territory on planet earth, hehe!

    Cheers Rich

    PS. And bugger me, gold went down! :( R

  31. muleskinner October 3, 2006 9:37 am

    Ring the bell often enough and the bell replaces food. Pavlov’s dog becomes brainwashed. The dog thinks the ringing bell becomes the necessary action to fulfill his need to satisfy the hunger. The conditioned stimulus is the ringing bell. The unconditioned stimulus is the empty stomach calling for some food.

    Tell a lie often enough, it becomes the truth. The lie, the conditioned stimulus, achieves the result, the belief that it is true, the conditioned response. The lie is what it is to those who are disconcerting and unostentatious. It is total bs, nothing else, the unconditioned response. You can’t be fooled.

    Propaganda will brainwash you. It is done all of the time. McDonald’s wants to sell you a Big Mac and fries. They tell you constantly to eat, eat, eat, eat. It never ends. You believe them. The conditioned response.

    The US government has people believing lies all of the time. The conditioned stimulus, lies, achieve the conditioned response, believing the lies (WMD, liberty, democracy etc).

    It can happen to you. None so blind as those who will not see.

  32. Stan October 3, 2006 9:48 am

    to Rich:
    don’t be funny, discount inflation and You are nowhere near DOW all time high.

  33. muleskinner October 3, 2006 10:23 am

    “(6) Along with these changes, we should pay members of the house $200,000 per year salary, more than ample compensation for what we expect them to do on our behalf. Salary will be frozen at this level until a national vote deems a raise is appropriate based on the merits of the service to the American people. All raises will be limited to a cost of living increase of the same amount as the governments reported inflation rates.”

    You are wrong. If anything, there should be a decrease in salaries of all government workers across the board. Too much government spending, waste, and corrupt practices are the problem.

    Money solves nothing.

    It will do no good to retain the status quo and hope that the problems will be solved. It won’t happen.

    The US Constitution is based upon the tenets of liberty and justice for all by the Iroquois nation.

    http://www.tuscaroras.com/graydeer/influenc/page4.htm

  34. Sapiens October 3, 2006 10:48 am

    “Stan Says:
    October 3rd, 2006 at 9:10 am
    to Sapiens:
    well, reading Your thoughts here and on Your homepage I only can say HA HA HA, every small child in eastern Europe would laugh into dead, You really have no idea about the homo sapiens, You remind me of some fanatic communist I have met in my life. ”

    You know Stan, I have no problem exploiting you if you let me. You can always take the easy way out if you wish, plenty of room on the other side.

    No I not a communist, I have done quite well by using others and their labor. The point is, once you have everything you want what else is there?

    Pffffttt.

    -Sapiens

  35. Stan October 3, 2006 11:30 am

    to Sapiens: there is a joke which probably suit well to You:
    A father speaks about his son ” well, John is now a very rich men, finally he can afford to be a communist”.
    The point is, You probably look for sense of Your life, nice, unfortunately ideas You have simply don’t work in reality, communist ideas and every similar ideas fail on human nature, that’s it.

  36. turk October 3, 2006 11:45 am

    Muleskinner,

    The majority of the corruption in government these days is from elected officials and government contractors who originate in the private sector. There has been an effective decrease in salaries and wages for career federal government employees across the board since Regan/Bush when compared to the private sector. It is not usually the career government employee who screws it all up, it is the political appointee, elected official and the lobbiest from the private sector. When looking at ‘government’ it is very important to differentiate between the various entities within the government. Condemning an entire system because we don’t want to consider all of the details and where they could be tweaked to make it better doesn’t solve existing problems it only allows new problems to take root.

  37. Nolan October 3, 2006 11:55 am

    “mutual accord or mutual extinction.”

    -Sapiens

    Indeed! So raise the alarm and show people how this is so. People believe that they are fighting for their survival already. What they don’t understand is that what they are doing is advancing their extinction.

    Point this out vividly and they will respond.

    I recall how fast people in California responded to a statewide water shortage some years back. It was incredibly swift. Later living in Oregon, I saw the same thing happen there as well. If people can respond to a water shortages, they can respond to survival requirements.

    People are slowly catching on to the menace of the corporation. Not only do they not trust Congress, they are coming to mistrust corporations. No surprise. The service now provided more and more by global outsourcing is getting worse and worse. Not only are people getting less and less service, they are being deceived and ripped off. Look at how the banks and finance companies seriously harmed borrowers in the real estate frenzy. Even BusinessWeek is talking about this. Made the front cover. People will catch on. In fact, reports now show that they are now just starting to feel the pain.

    Look at the organic movement and the farmers’ markets. Look at the growing number of CSAs. Even WalMart wants to get into the action. People want to be be healthy. They want their children to be healthy.

    Check out this article: http://www.commondreams.org/views06/1002-31.htm

    People are hurting but do not really understand why. They still do not see that the power brokers are responsible. They are still taking the bait. But that can change in a heartbeat. There really are tilting points. And I think that we are getting closer and closer. In fact, the discussion here illustrates the point.

    Nolan

  38. Rabach October 3, 2006 2:11 pm

    The quesiton, ‘is a new world possible’ has one simple response…it is not only possible but guaranteed.

    I am well aware that a lot on this blog do not like to here about ‘religion’ but once again the bible has prophecied these events that are going to readily take place in the near? future.

    First of all Kennedy had tried to repeal the Fed’s powers and create a US form of currency. He is dead, but the executive order he put in place is not. Any president could use it but I am certain that they remember Kennedy. Of course GW wouldn’t do a thing he has only made this country MUCH MUCH worse.

    So you want to save up food for this coming time? The governemnt has an executive order that can take it away and in many states they have anti-stockpiling laws.

    So you want to have a bunch of gold? Good luck if you can afford it, the Fed’s can easily have that maipulated from their ‘boss’ in London.

    So how about a farm, growing your own stuff and saving seeds? Do you really think they are going to let you get away with that if there is a major problem? They have prison camps being built for people like you, oh I’m sorry community centers.

    My point is that you are smart to save some stuff aside but you, man, can not solve this problem by yourself. Honestly if I was extremely concerned I would be moving to another country now, especially one that dislikes the US and is not in the middle east or EU.

    When it comes down to it all of your stockpiling can be taking away from the government. They have laws that can mandate mass populus shifting against people’s will. What you need to do is look for the real ‘ticket’ out of this problem, Jesus Christ.

    Accepting Jesus as your saviour by TRULY repenting of your sins and believing upon Him is the real way to avoid, hopefully all but at least most, problems this world WILL throw at you. There is a thing called the ‘rapture’ where all TRUE Christians will escape the wrath that is to come. They are preparing for that wrath and are going to instigate quite a bit of it.

    For more information I would check out…

    http://www.a-voice.org and learn the truth. This is the ONLY True Christian website that I recommend. As with anything there are many false answers or ways out there.

    The choice is yours, look into it.

    Rabach

  39. muleskinner October 3, 2006 3:03 pm

    “God gave us reason, not religion”

    Deism

    Deists do not believe in ‘revealed religion,’ i.e. Revelations.

    Also, I have seen the letter addressing civilian camps signed by a US Congressman. It is unsettling, to say the least.

    It’s the New World Odor.

  40. Turk October 3, 2006 3:07 pm

    Rabach, aren’t you forgetting one thing? We have a heavily armed population. In order for the government to restrict movement and take away things stockpiled by its citizens they would first have to rid us of our weapons. The government would never be successful in turning the U.S. military loose upon its own citizens, there would be a military coup in DC before that ever happened.

  41. Rabach October 3, 2006 3:44 pm

    Turk,

    You make a valid point, but however remember the media monopoly. There were thousands upon thousands of people protesting for the truth about 9/11 in NYC on the 5 year anniversy, did you hear a peep from the mainstream media? If the elitist run media protrays stories that are ignorant, dumb-down or just simply ignore American movements then the mass of people will not realize what is going on.

    Also if there if martial law is put into place because of a major, government-sponsored crisis, then people are going to be more worried about their day-to-day living (getting food, water, shelter, meds) then trying to bite the hand that feeds them.

    Also you are right there will be some sort of resistance. That is precisely why the camps are being built here and there all over the US. However, without a mass ‘consensus’ of people nothing will be but small bands of resistance. Is not our military training for such an exercise today?

    Is it possible that the UN ‘Peace’ Troops may help the US in a hour of need? After all our military isn’t supposed to be used against its own citizens. But if you hadn’t heard a bill just PASSED that allows such a thing to happen and people to be detained on hearsay, considered enemy combantants and tortured according to whatever GW thinks is reasonable. See my local news article about this…

    http://www.petoskeynews.com/articles/2006/10/03/news/opinion/opinion01.txt

    Or propagandamatrix.com…

    A lot of military personnel have abandoned Iraq and took refuge in a variety of other countries. But what if they threaten those people’s lives and the lives of their loved ones with maiming, torture or death? Would a lot of them still sit on the sidelines?

    How about the NAFTA North American Union that may be forming underneath our noses? Would they have their own army? To say that our military would never turn against us remember New Orleans.

    They went door to door and collected guns and ousted people. A lot of people where found shot in the back of the head around the area of the leevees which may well have been blown. Perhaps they were witnesses to such an event? After all if the US will orchestrate 9/11 to bring such evil and anti-Constitutional laws into place then use the media to bring an American against an American who knows what could happen? After all I am a FIRM believer that the government orchestrated 9/11. Other Americans who haven’t seen such evidence call me crazy and would suggest that I should be locked up because I am a terrorist or anti-American. Once again see that Petoskey News article to further explain this.

    The Universal National Service Act of 2006 that was never passed and probably never will be included a clause to mandate that all men and women in the US between the ages of 18 and 42 must service a mandatory time in either the military, homeland security or ‘other purposes’!

    So my point is this, our military could/would never be used against us is not true. After all our country would never allow a Pearl Harbor attack knowing in advance would they? Or 9/11?

    I am sorry to say but our country the United States of America Incorporated is much, much more corrupt that either you or I could imagine.

    The fact is noone wants to receive the kingdom on God as a child. Noone wants to be underneath someone else’s ‘authority’. Ever American has the right to decide what is true and false. I am certainly not trying to ‘push’ religion on anyone just making the facts available for those who WANT to hear and know what I know to be the truth.

    If you disagree with me than fine. I have my right to state my opinion as you do. If you agree with me than fine again.

    Sooner or later we will all find out who is right and wrong.

    Rabach

  42. Rabach October 3, 2006 5:15 pm

    In regards to organic food and Walmart’s involvement I must say that people really do not understand the evils behind the FDA and USDA. They have been infiltrated by Corporate America and have changed much/all of the regulations in their favor.

    Did you realize that your meat, dairy products, nuts, whole grains, fruits and vegetables may all be being treated with radiation. This is called irradiating food. Also do you realize that America uses very many GMO’s or genetically modified organisms to produce the seeds to grow the vegetables. These same untested GMO’s are banned clear across Europe, with maybe the exception of the UK. People have burned their crops and the US media, once again the media monopoly that is controlled by the same group of the international bankers, FEDS, CFR, etc…this is simply not reported, or barely reported upon in America.

    You have to do some serious, SERIOUS, researching to discover which foods that you eat or healthy for you or just proclaim health. If others are interested in WHICH food chooses to make or where to find such information leave a message in this blog.

    Buyer Beware,

    Rabach

  43. ron October 3, 2006 5:56 pm

    “The Universal National Service Act of 2006 that was never passed and probably never will be included a clause to mandate that all men and women in the US between the ages of 18 and 42 must service a mandatory time in either the military, homeland security or ‘other purposes’! ”

    I knew someone would work Foley and the church into this.

  44. muleskinner October 3, 2006 6:04 pm

    Percy Schmeiser

    The ‘old Adams’ that have gained control of the US gov. have a lot to learn.

  45. Jeff Kassel October 3, 2006 7:36 pm

    Most of the people who have contributed are far smarter than I am but I do have one comment. Things being what they are, all this talk about revolution and a new world order might light up some of those screens in the offices of Homeland Security and might have far reaching personal consequences.

    While I am sympathetic to all the thoughts of those who have chosen to comment, having recently done a little stint in jail, I have come to the conclusion that circumspection and keeping my mouth shut are also traits that can lead to a more perfect order.

    Forgive my shallowness, but when I find myself troubled by man’s inhumanity to man and the inequality that is endemic to most societies, I just grab a six pack and turn on the NFL or NBA. Learning how to distract oneself from things that are unpleasant is an art and I am learning to cultivate it. And to those of you who who don’t like sports or beer, let me suggest a good delmonico steak, medium rare.

    When I was young and innocent, I was bothered by many of the things that seem to trouble the writers on this site. Now, I simply try to avoid being a judge, accountant and auditor. Afterall, who am I to say what’s right?

    When we are faced with a crisis, we all want answers. When we’re in the holding cell of the Cook County Jail, when our children have been busted for possession with intent to distribute, when our wife tells us she’s fallen in love with another woman, when our son joins the marines during his third year at Harvard and demands to be sent to Iraq, when you turned down the $200 flood rider for your homeowners insurance policy and there’s four feet of water in your bedroom…this is when we fully understand the grittiness and cacophony of reality. If we are lucky, this is when we have our epiphany…as I did.

    When your life is in shambles and the bottom falls out…I mean falls out completely. When you are being arrained for a serious crime…you are mainly interested in one thing and one thing only…Plausible Deniability.

    It is axiomatic in our society for people who worry about existential questions. There is danger out there, there are always problems. Sometimes at the instant you think you’ve got the answer and act, in retrospect a few days later, you realize you’ve made a tremendous error. Many problems defy solutions. Often when things are broken, they cannot be completely fixed. Call me a nihilist, but sometimes we must be satisfied with “MAXIMUM PLAUSIBLE DENIABILITY.”

    At the end of the day, it’s what most of settle for.

    (Is this good enough, Mike)

    Jeff Kassel

  46. Administrator October 3, 2006 7:48 pm

    The trick of a class war is not to let the victims know they’re under attack

    Greg Palast said that in his book Armed Madhouse.

    So, what my friend Dave is saying is, “Look - we’re being attacked. It is a conscious strategy. Therefore, we have to be conscious of it, and have a conscious strategy to fight back.”

    So how are we going to do it? The opposition is organized. How are we going to organize ourselves?

    Michael Nystrom

  47. Jeff Kassel October 3, 2006 8:12 pm

    Comrad, Judge not lest ye be judged.

    And take an anger management class. You are not being attacked, you are being ignored…Which is why you have a website, kimosabi.

    Jeffkassel@comcast.net

  48. larry October 3, 2006 9:32 pm

    jeff kassel….i read your comments several times…i understand your personal revelations and the journey that lead you there…i am a poster here on occasion and learn from all these folks…i have no heavy degree’s,however i am capable of learning…i think all who are alive have stress,pain and obstacles to overcome…that is the delema of being mortal…however, the joy of life is the highest pursuit….to that end,many here are basically saying,as you are,life is hard,do the best and get on with it…but beyond that we are saying, i believe, that the degenerating system we are immersed in is making that pursuit of happiness just so much more intangable…why,because many here feel that system is so self serving and elitist by design that it demotes us to fodder for the machine at large….so,i am saying,please differentiate between the human condition and the corrupt conditions that the system is having us reside within…the matrix effect,so to speak….i hope you feel your struggle has been respected while i tried to establish that the system our existence finds us in is extremely germain to the life and joy we may ultimately attain…my humble opinions…that system and it’s influence is everything to each individuals outcome….we live in systems not in cacoons…we must value each others reality and have systems that are equitable and not elitist or the dissatisfaction, anger and rage WILL ultimately manifest…i am a strong proponent of what michael is doin here…he is giving us a place to vent experience, insite and yes anger…it is ok this is good thing,not bad…

  49. Peter October 3, 2006 10:12 pm

    In Germany´s Octoberfest where they drink beer there was a record of fightings this year. It says something about society.

    Yesterday I saw Maria Bartaromo with some rats at CNBC, they stand there happy happy, on the other hand a lot of us feel astranged.

    There is a division between the small rich group and the very large middleclass, lowerclass and even a little above middleclass. We are being screwed by government, politicians, banks, energy companies, insurance companies and all sorts of other corporations that take our money for doing almost nothing.

    Michael, you ask what we can do. Here in Europe new politicians stand up, not right wing, not left wing but more rational. With your almost two party system that is very difficult of course.

    And most people are so extremely stupid, they work for their bills, taxes, insurance, mortgage, energy, local taxes and then there´s almost nothing left and they still vote for parties that made this almost slave system possible!!!!!!!!!

    Support a new candidate with money, a website, free publicity.

  50. Peter October 4, 2006 1:19 am

    This proves my analysis is correct.

    LONDON (AFP) - The gap between rich and poor workers in the UK is growing, according to a survey which found top bosses’ pay rising nearly 10 times as fast as that of the average employee

    The highest-paid employees in a survey of the FTSE 100 index of leading companies earned some 175,000 pounds (259,525 euros, 330,300 dollars) last year

    according to the survey published Tuesday.

    One FTSE 100 firm is copper mining company Kazakhmys but the average salary of its miners is just a fraction of its executives at just 2,187 pounds a year.

    Top-earning businesses include investment banking, fund management and the oil and property markets, while supermarkets and cleaning companies remained the worst payers.

    The salaries of bosses rose by 28 percent in the 2005 financial year, compared to just 3.7 percent growth in average earnings, according to the survey by The Guardian in collaboration with Reward Technology Forum (RTF).

    “This increase in inequality damages social cohesion and holds back the whole economy,” said Brendan Barber, head of the Trades Union Congress (TUC), the umbrella grouping of labour unions in Britain.

    This was highlighted by the rise in interest rates to cool the most expensive end of the London housing market, which is driven by huge bonuses paid out to workers in The City financial district, he said.

    “What is worrying is that not only the gap within companies, but the gap in pay between companies seems to be getting bigger each year,” he added.

  51. Fred Walker October 4, 2006 5:57 am

    You people are out and out socialists. Some people just can’t make it in the real world. What else would I expect from somebody located in Mass.

  52. Peter October 4, 2006 6:43 am

    Not true, I am a capitalist, I work for myself and I want to keep as much as possible. Problem is that most of my money goes to taxes where people fake everything and don´t work, to energy companies that do almost nothing and charge enormous costs, insurance companies, local taxes etc. pure communism/ socialism that I despise.

    I think most of the people on this discussion want SMALLER governments, that is not socialist.

  53. Dave Stratman October 4, 2006 6:58 am

    Wow, people have had a lot of interesting things to say. I’d like to respond to a few of them:

    –to Moneylender: You’re right, the money system has to be fundamentally changed for a new world to be built. This is something Michael Nystrom convinced us of recently, long after this Statement of Principles was written. Michael also explained some principles which might inform a new system.

    –to Larry: It’s true that this is a Statement of Principles rather than a plan or program. In our view, the values upon which people construct a new social order are the most fundamental question. Will the new society be based on competition and Looking out for Number One–as we have now–or will it be based on cooperation and a strong sense of a common good? Will it be based on a view of ordinary people as intelligent and fit to govern society, or on ordinary people as “sheeple,” worthy only of being manipulated from on high? It’s true, we do need a plan or program for a new society, but that plan should be developed with the insights, knowledge, and experience of millions of people in a growing revolutionary movement. The Principles are intended as guidelines for that process.

    –to Simian: Yes, there are good people (I suppose) among the elites and bad apples among us ordinary folks, but as you point out, our society is in the hands of a group of sociopaths. I submit that capitalism, with its belief that “greed is good” and its encouragement of a dog-eat-dog world, guarantees a sociopathic outcome.

    –to Rich and some others who feel that the present system can be reformed: Our problem is that we are in the hands of a Permanent Warfare State. Every institution of society–the government, the media, the schools and colleges, the churches, the judiciary, the military, the police–is dominated by the military-industrial complex. The politicians are only front men for the real powers, who are not elected and therefore cannot be unelected. The paths of reform have been choked off.

    –to Stan and others who object to my equation of capitalism and communism: Capitalism and communism are not just economic systems; they are systems of human relations and class rule in which a small elite holds the money and the cards. The question is, How did two systems which claim to be so different end up so similar in this most fundamental respect? My answer: Capitalism and communism are based on the same paradigm, in which economic development is seen as the basis of human development, self-interest is seen as the most basic motivation, and working people are seen as the passive victims or beneficiaries of the actions of elites. You can’t get democracy out of this paradigm or this view of people.

    –to Sapiens, Nolan, Peter, and others: thanks for your insightful comments.

    I believe we are at a critical point in the history of the human race. We have got to create an alternative to the existing system before they destroy us.

    Many people realize we need a new society and desperately yearn for one, but see no alternative to the two systems between which we’ve been trapped. In feudal times, the idea of the Great Chain of Being was used to justify the order of society as God’s Will, so it couldn’t be changed. Now the capitalists say that capitalism is human nature and so cannot be changed.

    But is capitalism human nature? The fundamental principle of capitalism is competition, the idea of dog-eat-dog. The logic of this society is that each of us should be trying to screw the other person all the time; the world should be a savage and loveless place. But we can look around and see that this is not so. We can see that–with their wife or husband or friends or colleagues or students or co-workers–most people in the little piece of the world that they think they can control try to create relationships of love and trust and mutual support. Most people try to create relationships that are the opposite of capitalism. This means, I think, that most people are already in a struggle against capitalism and to create a more human world based on different values. People’s everyday lives have revolutionary meaning.

    This is why I think a new world is possible, one which is truly “of the people, by the people, and for the people.” And it will take a revolution to get it.

  54. muleskinner October 4, 2006 7:10 am

    I meant ‘alot to learn.’

    In the Straussian vein, it is the wise (the ultimate manipulators), the gentlemen, and the vulgar (the great unwashed). The wise rule the gentlemen (politicians) and the vulgar are being told what to do by the ‘gentlemen.’

    Straussians firmly believe that the vulgar need to be ruled.

    http://www.straussian.net/

    They have alot to learn… again.

  55. Ed J. October 4, 2006 7:22 am

    “We call on people everywhere to end elite rule and to create real democracy based on principles of solidarity and equality.”

    More dangerous words were never written. Democracies always self-destruct because the voters cannot limit their desires. This inevitably leads to bad policies, corruption of the elected officials, and alienation of the productive members of society. Soon the money is gone and the whole thing implodes. History records this happening dozens of times, so why on Earth should we think it will work differently or better this go-round?

    The United States was wisely founded as a constitutional republic, and over the past 200 years the forces of democracy have whittled away at its foundations. Here in 2006, we see the results as we stumble headlong towards a fascistic government that will claim to be even more “democratic”.

  56. Marc Authier October 4, 2006 8:23 am

    Democracies are always destroyed by economic crisis. And it won’t be different in the case of the US. Let say that George W. Bush and his predecessor Bill Clinton made an outstanding job at the destruction of your country. The only thing that is booming is the arms businness and the military. The writing is on the wall. The US in 2006 is not a nice place. It’s cleat the US is preparing itself for the next thrid world war or a new cold war. But this time I am not sure you will pass as the good guys like in 1945.

  57. bp October 4, 2006 10:08 am

    hehe, Michael you and Dave Stratman sure opened up a can of worms with this one - hope I’m not too late to comment.

    Surely everyone that has posted has had the “truth” of their own perceptions - quite an array of opinions….so I guess I will add mine.

    I have been doing a fair amount of reading lately on research into brain functioning - amazing stuff is being learned about the capapcity of our brains. One thing in particular that strikes me is that most people are at an “arrested development” stage of functioning (myself included). It seems that much of society is operating using some of the older areas of the brain, such as the reptilian and old mammal areas, and it seems we are being manipulated to some extend to keep us there through fear, hate, threat, insecurity and intimidation - the hope for the future is to help people, and especially children learn to develop and integrate these “higher” functioning areas of their brains - living in fear and hate undercuts the development of these brain areas - check out some of the research - they’ve even found a new center (neural-cardiology) that is located near the heart.

    I have hope for the future, but am not sure it can be reached through transformation - it just might have to be through revolution and disaster, but there are definitely postive developments out there, as have been mentioned here. Human nature is not as bad as some would suggest, if people are allowed to fully develop.

    As for what can be done now - there is a lot yet to learn, and remember that they break the cadence of marching troops as they go over a bridge because the resonance can set up a wave amplification that can destroy the bridge.

    keep up the good work.

  58. zephyr October 4, 2006 10:38 am

    Catching up on all the threads.

    -Dave Stratman #53 very insightful, intuitive statements. We must continue to hope and believe.
    -Fred Walker #51 very ignorant, I live in the Northeast…face it, your comments are made out of jealousy because of our progressive understanding and thinking. I’m sick of such ignorant comments about Northeasterners.
    -Rabach all of your posts- for the most part very insightful and thought-provoking. However, you have to lose the rapture crap. It was thought up by some knuclehead in the 18th century and has no real reference in scripture. The concept of rapture has done far more harm than good. I’m a Christian as well and I respect your faith, but again this whole rapture thing is just fuckin’ whacked.

  59. larry October 4, 2006 10:46 am

    gold…today i put 50% into unwpx precious metal fund…manager uses juniors and smaller miners and the fund is outperforming….manager will convert to cash when overbought conditions present…off topic? sort of but not really….we are all trying to survive the central bank devaluation scheme….power from knowledge/i hope…good luck and thanks all for advancing my level of awareness and hence potential….this site is the antithesis to what central powers wish!////they prefer unaware slave wage earners returning their earnings back to the corpoations and government via purchases and taxes…a free endentured servant system….i will fight IT till i am gone…i am armed and dangerous…my awareness is their enemy..i am an enemy of the state…i am their worst nightmare

  60. Peter October 4, 2006 10:57 am

    Stratman, I remember that there was something on tv about people who bought an enormous peace of land north of New Hampshire I think where they live to their own free laws, you can walk around naked if I remember correctly. You don´t have to change America. You can start your own semi country, no problem, doesn´t have to be with naked people.

    I didn´t look it up on the Internet but probably you can find it easily.

  61. Dave Stratman October 4, 2006 12:09 pm

    Peter–

    I’ve already got a country. It’s called the USA. I remain loyal and committed to its people, but not to its government and to the sociopaths who dominate it.

    I’ve never been a hippie and don’t believe in running away. Besides, I don’t think we really can escape the fate of our society, even by living off the grid. The fact is that we are connected to other human beings. Their pain is our pain, their joy is our joy. My wife and I enjoy a comfortable life materially, but that doesn’t make us any happier about what’s happening in Iraq or Palestine or to Delphi workers or millions of others here in the “land of the free.”

    Everything in our society is geared toward severing our connections and encouraging us to find our fulfillment in material things rather than in other people. This is what consumerism is all about. Consumerism is a form of social despair. Running off to a commune is just another form of despair. The only fully human thing to do is to stand and fight.

    If any of you find these thoughts interesting, I encourage you to visit the New Democracy site at newdemocracyworld.org or to order a copy of my book, _We CAN Change the World: The Real Meaning of Everyday Life_ from me for $3.00 plus $2.00 s&h. Contact me at newdem@aol.com.

  62. larry October 4, 2006 1:36 pm

    FOLEYgate…the next thread….if young boys are not safe from our elected officials,is anyone?

  63. Simian October 4, 2006 3:47 pm

    Mr. Stratman,

    While I think your ideals are admirable, what makes you think that others want to live under them? Why should we give up our tyrrany of the wealthy for the tyrrany of the idealists? I think that Peter #60 has an excellent point. I think it was Ghandi who said something similar: “Be the change that you want to see in the world.” Naturally people will be skeptical of someone who holds such high ideals, as long as it is other people who are implementing them.

    Why not go start a commune somewhere - not as running away, but as a proof of concept. I won’t go so far as to say that you should give up on your dream, but trying to get 6 billion people to live in democratic harmony is a pretty big piece of pie to bite off. So what is wrong with a proof of concept? In stead of sitting around writing about democracy, live it. If you can create a world so appealing and so attractive to the rest of us, I can assure you that we will be banging down your door wanting to get in or know your secret. Without that proof of concept, all you have is a pie in the sky piece of paper.

    Say you do start your commune, and half the people do want to be naked, just to take Peter’s example. But the other half doesn’t - how would you deal with such a problem? Take a vote? Live and let live? The point is that there will be millions of issues like this, and the only way to find out how to deal with such issues is to go off and try.

    One of the inalienable individual rights is the right to run away from the group. That is what makes America so great - that is what America is founded upon. I think if there were a place to run to - a place like the one you speak of in your document - many, many people would line up to go. But that would be their own conscious choice - they would be motivated to go, and they would be motivated to make it work. But many many people would want to have nothing to do with you. Trying to force your ideal upon 95% of this nation or this world is simply wasting your time. Run your beta with those of like mind and see how it works. I for one would like to hear about it.

    -Simian

  64. Administrator October 4, 2006 3:56 pm

    Hey bp - that is very interesting. Everything begins with the mind. We need a revolution in consciousness/understanding before we we will have the impetus to stage an actual revolution. One person I have been following is Andrew Cohen, who has a center here in Boston. He is also all about revolution, but comes at it from a different angle.

    Cohen says:

    Those at the leading edge are going to have to take this leap and chart the way to the future. And that means us—you and me, right here, right now. You see, if you’re even thinking about these questions, that means that you are part of a privileged minority. Most people on this planet do not have the freedom to even begin to think about these philosophical and spiritual issues because they have to devote all of their time and energy to simply surviving. The small minority of us who do have the time and circumstances for introspection are in a very fortunate position and could make a real difference. But what is crazy about this picture is that we won’t do it. Why? Because we’re too busy worrying about ourselves. The tragic irony of the postmodern mess that we’re in is that so many of the most highly evolved and privileged people on the planet are lost in an emotional and psychological relationship to life that’s very primitive—a swamp of narcissism and self-concern.

    So this is our evolutionary challenge. We need to find the heart to see our own spiritual yearnings in the biggest possible context, in such a way that is going to compel us to lift ourselves up out of narcissism and self-concern. We need to find the courage to come together and face the challenges before us. And to do this, we need a new spirituality. We need a new enlightenment.

    It sounds very similar to what you’re talking about. What are you reading?

    Michael

  65. Danny G. October 4, 2006 4:16 pm

    It does not matter anymore. The important things is you fight for what you believe. When the time comes, the victors will rule. The freeloaders will smply enjoy the show.

    Do not look for heaven on earth. Just continue fighting with one antoher and the winner will rule.

    Let the best system survive. Ok. Fight!

  66. Shooter October 4, 2006 5:03 pm

    Wow - a bunch of smart people here, very smart people. It seems pretty simple to me. Since the beginning of man’s existance there have always been haves and have nots, masters and slaves, etc.
    Revolution brings about change for a time, but eventually reverts to what has always been.
    So, we do the best we can, try to take care of our own and hope that our children can do better than we’ve done.
    At the end of the day, I will stand and fight to protect my family and property against anyone that seeks to harm or steal - anyone.

    Zephyr - you are the reason that people from other parts of this country think people from the Northeast are complete nutjobs. You’re arrogant, and speak as though you are superior. You say you’re Christian, yet the venom you spew is like that of a heathen. Your ideas are not progressive, they are the same ideas that have been around for centuries. The scary part about Northeastern ideals is that people like you are more than willing to use government to enforce them, because after all, people of your ilk know what is best for the rest of us.

  67. Count Meout October 4, 2006 5:19 pm

    Wow! Did I fall asleep back in 1980, and wake up in a future where John Anderson is running for office again? I haven’t seen such a vaguely worded stack of fertilizer in quite a while. Point 3 tells me that whatever committee wrote this thing consists of people totally ignorant of the history of Marxism, heck, they don’t know squat about history in general. Point 5 attempts to take Marxist ideas and dress them in something else, but I smell a “vanguard of the revolution” here, and that leads to Leninism.

    This is too much like a combination of the worst of Nader’s club and Perot’s scam, with some old fashioned Socialism on top.

    Good thing I read this before sending any money in to support the site. First a flat prediction of a market crash that ain’t happening, now this bunch of leftover claptrap from the 60’s. Maybe you can borrow George Ure’s copy of the “prophecies” of Nostradamus, and start playing the stock market based on that, too.

    Count me out.

  68. bp October 4, 2006 6:03 pm

    Michael,

    Cohen’s site does look interesting - I’ll have to go through it - I don’t know how you keep tabs on all this stuff - the book I read that got me started with the brain was Descartes’ Error: Emotion, Reason, and the Human Brain by Antonio R. Damasio. I have recently read The Biology of Transcendence by Joseph Chilton Pearce which has a great bibliography. Pearce’s writing style puts me off, and I think he gets out on thin ice, but he does pull together a lot of things I wasn’t aware of. He is up on a lot of research in this area.

    thanks for the reference to Cohen

  69. Atash October 4, 2006 10:07 pm

    With all due respect, Democracy is a horrible idea. Socrates’ conviction and death sentence by popular vote seems to have proven that, in case it wasn’t obvious.

    Democracy is based on a fallacy of composition. An individual has a self-interest, a will, and an opinion. A mob has none of those things. It does not make sense to vote on what “we” are having for dinner tonight. Each man to his own burden.

    Popular opinions are not necessarily informed opinions. I do not want the same people who thought Saddam Houssein personally ordered 911 (because of the constant juxtaposition in the media of his photo with that of the twin towers) to help me invest my retirement money. John Dewey claimed he would “educate” them “for democracy”–and he turned the education system into so much brainwashing and attitude-control. Instead of dictators we have teachers and other propagandists.

    Equality is also a very bad idea. People are neither born equals nor do they develop towards equality. I can not accept equality with drug dealers, pornographers, crack addicts who beat or neglect their kids, or any of the other “ordinary people” who live in my crime-infested neighborhood.

    Kind regards.

  70. Simian October 5, 2006 9:39 am

    Mr. Stratman,

    While I do appreciate the sentiments expressed in your document, there is a certain void when it comes to action. What are you doing to further your ideals? It is not enough to say, “I wrote the document, now you people go figure out how to implement it while I live my comfortable material existence.” THE COMFORTABLE MIDDLE CLASS, MATERIALLY COMFORTABLE EXISTENCE IS BUILT UPON, HAS ITS FOUNDATIONS, IN EXPLOITATION.

    I don’t think I need to elaborate on that statement for the thinking people here. If anyone needs me to, I shall. I think that the world that you have envisioned does exist in this world - in different pockets, in families, in communities, on communes, whereever… Why do you want to convert the world? Why not find such a community, or found such a community, as I have previously suggested, and be happy there. Grow it - show how good your ideas are by living them. Others will follow.

    Please don’t take offense - these are not accusations, they are honest questions.

    -Simian

  71. dan desoto October 7, 2006 2:33 pm

    Below is New Democracy’s Statement of Principles. We would appreciate your thoughtful input and feedback on the Statement and on how we can move towards making it a reality.

    Here’s to a new boss, same as the old boss…

  72. marketoracle.co.uk October 9, 2006 5:19 pm

    I want to see countries that throw their weight about like the US, held to account for their actions, that would probable make for a more peaceful and democratic world when countries intefere less in the affairs of others.

  73. Dave Stratman October 12, 2006 8:17 am

    I am very disappointed that there has been no real discussion of the New Democracy Principles themselves, which I believe are a significant attempt to set forth guiding principles for a new movement. They were composed by a committee of nineteen people at Madison, WI in 1998. Most of the people involved in the writing were auto workers (some of them now retired). Several of them had led the Caterpillar struggle throughout the 1990s; others were activists in their respective plants. A couple were teachers or (like myself) educators. Several of them were Vietnam vets and commmitted peace activists (as well as auto workers). All of them are committed to the the values of solidarity and equality on which the Principles are based and to building a better world for their children and grandchildren and other working people like themselves. None of them is interested in starting a commune in New Hampshire.

    The Principles do not propose something to be imposed on people from above. They rather attempt to describe the real state of the world as we see it–a dictatorship of the rich–and to articulate what we believe that most people want–a true democracy based on commonly-shared, humane values. As Simian points out, the world that the principles describe does already exist in this world in pockets–in families, communities, in communes, whatever. The Principles assert that these positive relationships exist in our society only because so many people fight against the capitalist system to create these relations in their lives; revolution consists of transforming all of society with these values. The Principles also describe what we see as the only force in society that can bring about fundamental change: the people themselves.

    The Principles are not an attempt to “convert the world” so much as an effort to state openly what we believe is on a great many people’s minds. We are hardly the only people to feel that we live in a dictatorship of the rich or to feel that the country needs a revolution to make things right. The problem is that all the people who think these things are constantly told by the media and the politicians that they are crazy to think them and that, if they do entertain such thoughts, they are all alone. We are telling them that they are not alone and proposing guiding principles for a revolutionary movement.

    Each of the principles has important implications for political practice. On our NewDemocracyWorld.org site you can find how we apply these principles in education, labor, health care, electoral politics, culture, the war in Iraq, and Israel/Palestine. Our writings in each other these areas further develop our principles, and of course, the people already intimately involved in each of these areas–teachers, workers, nurses and doctors, et al.–have their own ideas and insights. They hardly need for us to tell them what to do.

    I will be happy to engage in substantive discussion of the principles. I am not interested in responding to personal questions.

  74. Dispensing Solutions November 3, 2006 1:14 am

    Dave

    Interesting topic… I’m working in this industry myself and I don’t agree about this in 100%, but I added your page to my bookmarks and hope to see more interesting articles in the future

  75. Administrator November 3, 2006 12:01 pm

    Thank you for all the great comments! I’m going to have to button up this thread to keep the spamming vandalizers at bay. Please check the Blog Home Page to see the current threads.

    Thank you!
    Michael Nystrom
    Editor
    http://www.bullnotbull.com

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