Why It’s So Hard to Give Peace A Chance in America

W.J. Astore

It sure is hard to give peace a chance in America, as recent events with Russia and Ukraine show. The Washington consensus is all about weapons and more weapons, of economic sanctions, i.e. economic warfare, of not being seen as a pitiful helpless giant, as Richard Nixon once said during the Vietnam War. America can never stand on the sidelines, even when its national security interests aren’t even threatened. Something must be done, something forceful, something involving troops and weapons and ultimatums that could very well escalate into disaster.

Revealingly, Washington insiders always talk of “all options” being on a metaphorical table, meaning the most violent ones, including war, for the president to choose from. They lie. Because the one option that’s never on that imaginary table is peace.

Peacemakers might be the children of God, but perhaps America is more godless than it knows. Or maybe it just worships the god of war, a Pentagod. It’s discouraging to face the obstacles to peace in America, because these obstacles are not going to be removed just by singing songs and writing articles or even by protesting. What is truly needed is a mass movement against war, as we saw during the Vietnam War years, but even that mass movement took years to have an impact. And it was motivated as well by resistance to the draft, which no longer exists.

A short list of the obstacles to peace is sobering indeed:

  • The power of the military-industrial-congressional complex. It doesn’t want to get smaller or less powerful. It thrives off weaponry and wars. It has no interest in peace.
  • The mainstream media. It’s owned by major corporations and advances corporate agendas. It smears antiwar voices as naive (at best) and often as traitorous and/or weak. Antiwar voices simply aren’t heard on the MSM. Instead, retired colonels and generals, as well as senior ex-CIA officials, are put forward as unbiased voices of reason as they promote the most hawkish lines.
  • The absence of a draft. Let’s face it: the youth of America are much more likely to resist war if they have to risk their lives. But America has an “all volunteer force,” and if these volunteers are sent off to war, that’s what they signed up for. Right?
  • American culture in general is suffused with violence and misinformed about the world, especially America’s imperial role in it. Myths about American exceptionalism and beliefs about the troops as freedom-fighters serve to inhibit antiwar criticism and protests.
  • The difficulty of launching any kind of sustained protest nowadays. Ready to gather in the streets to march against war? Sorry, do you have a permit? Covid restrictions may prevent you from gathering. And maybe we’ll move you to a special “free speech” zone, which I assure you will be far away from media cameras. What good is protesting if you gain no traction because few people see you and the media ignores you?

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying it’s impossible to give peace a chance. Just that it’s very difficult, given the power structures of our society and our collective national ethos. It’s mind-boggling that America has so many agencies for “defense” and “intelligence.” We have the Pentagon, the Department of Homeland Security (a domestic mini-Pentagon), something like 17 intelligence agencies like the CIA and NSA, the list goes on. State and local police forces are now heavily militarized and generally unsympathetic to your right to assemble and to protest vigorously. Get a job, commie peacenik!

Meanwhile, society’s heroes are U.S. military troops, or the “thin blue line” of police that “protect and serve.” Those who are committed to peace are generally not viewed as heroes, at least not by society at large. Again, Christ may have seen peacemakers as God’s children, but in the U.S. there’s a preference (judging by gun sales) for Colt Peacemakers.

How to overcome these obstacles to truly give peace a chance is perhaps the most pressing issue of our age, given the risk of war going nuclear and ending most life on our planet. Readers, I don’t have easy answers, but I’d begin with Ike’s warning about the military-industrial complex in 1961, JFK’s peace speech in 1963, MLK’s speech against the Vietnam War on April 4th, 1967, perhaps even John Lennon’s song “Imagine.”

How do we imagine — and then create — a new reality that favors peace instead of war? How do we pursue a just and lasting peace with ourselves and with all nations that Abraham Lincoln spoke of near the end of the U.S. Civil War?

The words are there. The vision is there. Tapping the nobility of Lincoln, Ike, JFK, and MLK and their antiwar messages is possible. Isn’t it?

As JFK said in his “peace speech,” to believe that war is inevitable is a “dangerous defeatist belief.” I’m with JFK.

The antiwar movement helped to stop the disastrous Vietnam War, but it sure wasn’t easy

156 thoughts on “Why It’s So Hard to Give Peace A Chance in America

  1. “Because John Wayne don’t run away.”
    (This was the reason William Goldman was given by a studio executive when asked to rewrite the ending of “Butch Cassidy & the Sundance Kid.”)

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      1. Another excellent essay about the violence inherent in our society – culture.

        I believe you have listed the causes of the disease ( of violence ) in the body politic in your short list of obstacles. I see all of the listed causes as secondary causes. By secondary causes I mean such as a physician who lists the cause of death of a patient as pneumonia. The patient did die of pneumonia but the lungs were diseased from smoking 2 packs a year for 40 years; that was the real cause of death. The real cause of the violence in this society is a diseased soul. Somewhere in our history the disease entered the soul of America. Perhaps it was as early as 1640 when the children of the original immigrants to this country renegaded on the treaties their parents made with the Native Americans. Perhaps it was earlier when the first slaves were brought to Jamestown in 1619.

        There is another disease in this country called ennui or a deep dis-satisfaction with one’s life and society. The outlet for this ennui is violence because that is the easiest way to get out of boredom; especially when one is given the latest in destructive weaponry and told one is fighting for freedom and democracy.

        The causes of this deep dis-satisfaction have already been listed in previous essays: lack of opportunity due to great wealth disparity, and lack of another narrative that does not promote glory obtained by violence. As you and many of the commentators have said before, young men need to have a rite of passage from boyhood to manhood. As all of us have said, it a shame that going to someone else’s country and killing them is that rite of passage.

        Yes, we need to re-imagine this country and a new myth or narrative that is courageous, yet peaceful. What is it?

        Liked by 4 people

        1. It has always astonished me how Black people could be brutalized and told they were not welcome — while they, as a people, had been violently forced to the U.S. from their African home as slaves. Meanwhile, in Toni Morrison’s novel Beloved, the narrator notes that, like the South, the Civil War era northern states also hated Black people but happened to hate slavery more.

          After 3.5 decades of local, national and international news consumption, I have found that a disturbingly large number of categorized people, however precious their souls, can be considered thus treated as though disposable, even to an otherwise democratic nation. When they take note of this, tragically, they’re vulnerable to begin subconsciously perceiving themselves as beings without value. (I’ve observed this in particular with indigenous-nation people living with substance abuse/addiction related to residential school trauma, including the indigenous children’s unmarked graves in Canada.)

          And there has been little or no reparations or real refuge for the abovementioned peoples.

          Liked by 1 person

        2. why is it that all i have remaining is a deluge of tears from my hyper-active lachrymals when i read such inenarrable replies as wjscott2’s and fgsjr2015’s to wja’s profoundly ineffable article? no answers, no action, just unbridled dysphoria. so many of us feel enshackled by our impuissance, and it’s bloody depressing.

          as chris hedges tirelessly urges, revolution seems the only answer remaining to us. rather than fighting it w/ weapons, however, we can fight it w/ our wallets, but in reverse; given our consumerism is far beyond obscene in any case, we should try to organize boycotts on every product we uncover that is owned/produced by any corporation/manufacturer which/who contributes so much as a screw or a single calorie to the MICC’s obscenities. i doubt such revolutionary boycotts will introduce significant hardships if we all became minimalists and simply stopped buying all the crapola in our immediate ambit, which we are misled by MSM advertisers to believe we ‘simply can’t do w/out!’.

          our ancillary but contiguous disease, wjscott2, is raging, esurient consumerism.

          Liked by 2 people

          1. Jeanie, I agree with Hedges that a revolution is needed, I do not believe it can be done peacefully as he does. The dilemma is that when violence is used to combat violence, the disease of violence enters the soul, then the ‘good guys’ turn into the ‘bad guys’ and the whole things starts anew. I do not believe that organizing boycotts is the answer because all the companies and corporations are ‘dirty’. You would not have any power to your house, any food, or clothing among almost all other things needed for a life. The alternative is to completely drop out. I have continued to be a drop out in that I have solar power, maintain a 15 year old car, a 25 year old truck and a 54 year old house. I repair everything I can myself from electric gadgets that have a switch go bad to painting my house so it will weather another 10 years.

            I was a member of the group of people called the ‘Hippies’ in the 1960s. We turned on, tuned in and dropped out. I never dropped out entirely because I saw the futility of that, and also there were many of us that did not want to pick up a hoe and start growing vegetables.
            That sort of commitment to not participating in the violent society is what is needed now. It is a tough commitment because one is being constantly enticed to join the consumer society. Also one will be required to sacrifice. I was ready to leave the country in 1969 and go to Canada if my number came up for the Viet Nam war.

            That sort of a clear vision of a new society based on peace, and mutual aid and respect is what we need now. I do not see that happening as it did in the 1960s and I do not know why.

            Liked by 1 person

            1. sagacious observations and suggestions, sir solon, particularly that violence breeds amplified levels of violence. ironically, it was also chris hedges who reminded us of the catholic priest daniel berrigan’s definition of ‘faith’: “the good draws to it the good”, yet he promulgates revolution, and not necessarily a non-violent one.

              by the way, living in a jungle-clad montane environment on the shores of the philippines verde island passage facilitates living one’s life as a minimalist. as w/ you, we have no car, no tv, no electronic devices but our computer, no fancy furniture, just cane and bamboo [tho’ the landlord parks his excess crapola here], no electric pump to bring water into our pipes [gravity does it for us], and as a vegan, eat most of my food raw [tho’ not my husband… that is to say, i eat my FOOD raw, i don’t eat my husband raw!].

              i recently viewed a michael moore documentary, PLANET OF THE HUMANS. i urge you to view it as well. i include here a précis, as well as my reaction to the film for family and friends:

              “Michael Moore presents Planet of the Humans, a documentary that dares to say what no one else will — that we are losing the battle to stop climate change on planet earth because we are following leaders who have taken us down the wrong road — selling out the green movement to wealthy interests and corporate America. This film is the wake-up call to the reality we are afraid to face: that in the midst of a human-caused extinction event, the environmental movement’s answer is to push for techno-fixes and band-aids. It’s too little, too late.

              Interview with Jeff, Michael, and Ozzie (1hr 16min): https://youtu.be/HBGcEK8FD3w
              Hill TV Response to critics with Jeff, Michael and Ozzie (17min): https://youtu.be/Bop8x24G_o0
              FAQ, Discussion Guide, Media: https://planetofthehumans.com/

              Removed from the debate is the only thing that MIGHT save us: getting a grip on our out-of-control human presence and consumption. Why is this not THE issue? Because that would be bad for profits, bad for business. Have we environmentalists fallen for illusions, “green” illusions, that are anything but green, because we’re scared that this is the end—and we’ve pinned all our hopes on biomass, wind turbines, and electric cars?

              No amount of batteries are going to save us, warns director Jeff Gibbs (lifelong environmentalist and co-producer of “Fahrenheit 9/11” and “Bowling for Columbine”). This urgent, must-see movie, a full-frontal assault on our sacred cows, is guaranteed to generate anger, debate, and, hopefully, a willingness to see our survival in a new way—before it’s too late.

              Featuring: Al Gore, Bill McKibben, Richard Branson, Robert F Kennedy Jr., Michael Bloomberg, Van Jones, Vinod Khosla, Koch Brothers, Vandana Shiva, General Motors, 350.org, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Sierra Club, the Union of Concerned Scientists, Nature Conservancy, Elon Musk, Tesla.” [end of prelusion].

              Website: https://planetofthehumans.com/

              [jeanie’s comments]: “never did i suspect precisely just HOW deleterious biofuels were to our environment, how many trillions of forests and jungles must be razed to produce biofuels that can barely power the toaster for your breakfast. i’m ashamed to admit the egregious nadir of my awareness, the dearth of my knowledge, and my deficiencies as a conservationist. the effulgent, radiantly striking display of my ignorance on this issue of what is globally and disingenuously termed ‘green energy’ has shocked me to the core.

              EARTH PATH, say goodby to your beloved forests… unless the plethora of students, whom outdoor environmental education programs like yours are gently training to love and respect those forests and their inhabitants, can rise up in collective clarions to sing for their survival. today’s students must vow to live their lives as minamalists and dramatically reduce energy-consumptive practices in their personal lives… and i use ‘consumptive’ in both its more archaic metaphoric meaning of a wasting disease, as well as in its more modern meaning of resource consumption.

              the haunting scenes of the dying orang-utan and the young simians endeavouring to negotiate thru their carbonized trees will shatter your hearts. if it doesn’t do so for all of us rapacious human primates, then our hearts are dead, and we are finished as a species.

              PS: this documentary is subtle, thought-provoking and compelling, and its gravitas is ponderous and weighty w/out being depressingly alarmist or hopeless.”

              Liked by 1 person

            2. Full circle, WJ: the Hippies of the ’60s were not obsessed with the latest, greatest toys, and keeping up with the Joneses. The reason that no segment of our society will replicate the vision, actions, and convictions of the Hippies is the very consumerism you and Jeanie have been discussing.

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            1. oh dear, i hope you embrace at least a level of consumerism sufficient to validate kleenex as a legitimate purchase w/out the guilt trope. if not, forest moss works well as a tear-cleansing agent.

              Liked by 1 person

  2. You are a powerful alternative voice, which is most welcome. But generalities and platitudes are relatively easy to voice and get behind.

    Without resorting to phrases like “give peace a chance” or “a new reality,” what do you think the US should do about the Ukraine situation? What specific policies and/or actions should America (both the government and society) enact, enable, or pursue?

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    1. I wouldn’t send weapons to Ukraine. I don’t want my taxpayer dollars to subsidize more weapons for more war.

      I wouldn’t meddle in Ukrainian politics, as the U.S. did in 2014.

      I wouldn’t invite Ukraine to join NATO.

      I would foster a diplomatic settlement between Ukraine and Russia, assuming those two countries wanted our help.

      Otherwise, I’d mind my own business. America has enough problems to solve here at home.

      What specific policies and/or actions should America enact, enable, or pursue, in your view? As you said, please avoid platitudes and generalities like “standing firm” or “supporting democracy in Ukraine.”

      Liked by 3 people

      1. You are ever the professor! Answer the easy part of the question (the “would not’s”) and turn it back on the student to answer the much tougher “would do’s”! Let’s see what you think about these proposals:
        * I would assist Ukraine, IF they want they help, to become a “poison frog” for Russia; give them aid, training, and assistance not to resist an invasion (which is nonsensical) but to become far too much trouble to digest after an invasion.
        * I would work to diversify Europe’s energy sources, including restarting nuclear power plants that were shut down after 2011. Not only would this reduce European reliance on Russian fuel, and thus Russian blackmail, but would significantly reduce greenhouse emissions.
        * I would ramp up global public awareness of what Russia is doing in and around Ukraine, in the cyber and military domains, what they have done in the past (both in Ukraine and in other former SSRs, including the Baltic states), and how life changes in a newly “Russia-fied” state. Some things get better, particularly in poor areas, but a lot gets worse.
        * Finally, in the political and temporal space that the above steps created, I would work to organize a pan-European strategic agreement that balances all nation’s (including Russian) security, economic, and social interests. This is obviously a tall order, almost a Bismark-style balance of power. Of course there is much to criticize about Bismark’s order (such as the Great War!), but nothing that came about after the Kaiser “dropped the pilot” was inevitable.

        A European order that respects human rights, national borders, and economic interests is not impossible, but it does require hard compromises. It also requires someone with the ability, focus, and time to do the work.

        I don’t believe that it is enough to simply “mind our own business.” The economic interests of ordinary Americans are tied to what happens in Europe and Asia. And while I think I’ve done a good job avoiding platitudes and generalities, here’s one for you: I believe that it is immoral to ignore blatant violations of international norms.

        Yes, I know that opens up a giant can of “What about when America did A, B, or C?!?” But if perfection in our behavior is the standard, than none of would ever help anyone else fight off a mugger.

        How’s that, professor? How’d I do?

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        1. Yes I agree wholeheartedly that it is immoral to ignore blatant violations of international norms. So when the United States going to cease and desist violating “international norms” my friend?

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          1. Reducing complex issues to bumper stickers certainly virtue signal to your friends, but it solves nothing and convinces no one.

            You, like all of us, exceed speed limits, perhaps drive with a cocktail under your belt, maybe even skip reporting some income on your taxes. All of these actions have societal consequences, yet you (I would imagine) don’t feel that the social norms you’ve broken preclude you from helping your neighbor when they’re broke or a thief stole their car.

            America, like France and some other EU countries, have strict border control policies that also involve locking up immigrants. America, like the Swiss, have banking arrangements that can be utilized by the rich, powerful, and underhanded to shield ill-gotten gains. America, like Japan, has had and continues to have racist policies and laws that have oppressed generations.

            Yet America, like all of the other countries, can and should (not must) act on other’s behalf. No one country can solve all the world’s problems – personally I am completely opposed to any neo-con ideas of shining cities on hills or the global policeman. But when morals, national interests, and convenience intersect (cynical, yes, but real), America should act internationally.

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        2. Hello Bentonian: A few comments on your proposals:

          1. Who in Ukraine wants our help? Is it the people themselves, or is it a corrupt leadership with forces that promote a form of neo-Nazism? It’s unclear to me.
          2. Restarting nuclear power plants: Are these plants viable? Can they produce electricity at a competitive price? What about the problem of nuclear waste storage/disposal? Can a plant be easily and safely restarted after being mothballed for a decade or more?
          3. I think we need more public awareness of what the U.S. is doing around the world. Consider the disastrous Afghan and Iraq wars. Consider the use of torture. Consider all the innocent people killed in drone strikes. Let’s focus on ourselves first.
          4. I agree that the U.S. has a role in Europe, e.g. NATO. But border and political disputes between Russia and Ukraine are not our affair.

          Consider that Ukraine was part of the USSR until 30 years ago. Consider that the U.S. has meddled in Ukrainian affairs and has conspired to expand NATO to include former Soviet entities, including Ukraine. That meddling, together with reneging on our promise to Russia to abstain from expanding NATO, has helped to create the crisis we’re witnessing today.

          The U.S. faces enormous problems domestically. Let’s focus on those.

          Liked by 1 person

        3. Agree with your remedies except the nuclear power. There is no need for nuclear power if a society makes a firm commitment to non-nuclear energy. Yes, there will be sacrifices to be made, but our grand-children and their grand-children will thank us.

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  3. For the Developed World to reject a plan for peace implies that the oligarchy of private capital influencing legislative bodies would much prefer to continue structuring a world system of financial control in private hands, through wars, financial obligations, and regime changes, with U.S. continuing military expenditures of some $800,000,000,000 per year, bound to increase.

    But here is a military prediction of “Constant Conflict”: “There will be no peace. At any given moment for the rest of our lifetimes, there will be multiple conflicts in mutating forms around the globe. Violent conflict will dominate the headlines, but cultural and economic struggles will be steadier and ultimately more decisive. The de facto role of the US armed forces will be to keep the world safe for our economy and open to our cultural assault. To those ends, we will do a fair amount of killing.” — Major Ralph Peters of the Office of the Deputy Chief of Staff for Intelligence, 1997, where he was responsible for future warfare.

    “On the other hand we also possess the seeds of goodness and justice that humankind was given by nature and has fostered over the ages. We have the ability to cultivate self-control and consideration for others and to strive to live together in a humane and harmonious manner with others. The revival of such true humanity—not only between individuals, but also between nations—is an absolute necessity today, for the age has come when one nation’s self-centered behavior could lead all humanity to annihilation.” —Naomi Shohno, 1986, Hiroshima

    Question for all members of Congress: What new plans are in progress in Congress for achieving world peace? . . . . . .Why are there none? etc.

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    1. P.S. Note that, as a peace-nik, Lennon’s days were inevitably cut short, as were JFK’s, RFK’s, and MLK’s. One could argue, however, that their assassinations made their words and their work that much more memorable.

      Liked by 3 people

  4. Peace-nik. Mohammed Ali : “Why should they ask me to put on a uniform and go ten thousand miles from home and drop bombs and bullets on brown people in Vietnam while so-called Negro people in Louisville are treated like dogs and denied simple human rights?”
    Where are our modern day Mohammed Ali’s eh Denise?

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    1. In 1945, at Nag Hammadi in Egypt—in one of the most important discoveries of the 20th century—Coptic translations of original Greek Gnostic texts were found in a cave by the shepherd Mohammed Ali. In 1947 the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls at Qumran revealed original Essene texts. These two great discoveries together give us an accurate and penetrating view of the life and belief of early Christianity, and of the actual teaching of Jesus of Nazareth.
      The Nag Hammadi texts include authentic Gospels, Acts and Letters. Unfortunately, none of these texts were included in any contemporary Christian Bible. They are readily available in contemporary translations of the Nag Hammadi library and the Dead Sea Scrolls, and in Barnstone and Meyer’s The Gnostic Bible (2006)

      Here’s another Muhammad Ali, who back in the day located authentic material that was deep sixed. Interesting to know that the powers of oligarchy have always been busy silencing “any & all truth” that would have cut into their culture of conquest. If Christianity was developed from the non-dual and focused on the spiritual transformation of self-realization….well I’m casting lots on the idea that the gospel of peace would have been the dominant strain in Jesus’ legacy; instead of this corporatized militant mingling within the halls of the oligarchies of this earthly domain.

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  5. @BENTONIANEA58F25768
    Since World War II, The United States has overthrown at least 36 governments, interfered in at least 85 foreign elections, attempted to assassinate over 50 foreign leaders, and dropped bombs on people in over 30 countries. https://davidswanson.org/warlist/
    All when morals, national interests, and convenience intersected I guess?

    Liked by 3 people

    1. I understand your frustration. The real world is messy, hypocritical, violent, and unfair. Yet it is the world in which we live.

      The question I posed concerned potential American steps that could be taken in the Ukrainian situation. In particular I was hoping that the creator and followers of this blog would be able to generate rational, useful suggestions concerning an actual issue, that both aligned with ethos of the blog and the realities of the world.

      Yes, I believe there are actions that can be taken regarding Ukraine, well short of war, that benefit the national interest. It appears that you do not. In that case, good night!

      And thank you for letting me share this space for a little while.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Here’s a rational, useful suggestion: make an honest and accurate reappraisal of how the US and its citizens are regarded throughout the world. I’ve lived in other countries and have done a fair amount of traveling, and what becomes readily apparent is the American government is neither trusted nor respected and apart from athletes and entertainers, the American people (and their “leaders”) are regarded as boorish and provincial, arrogant and prone to violence.
        Elements of the “American lifestyle” are envied and sought after, but where I currently reside – The Netherlands – the greater fear is not that the Russians will invade Ukraine or cut off fuel supplies through Germany, but that US “diplomatic pressure” and subsequent military involvement will have tragic consequences for Europe.
        That is the reality of the world.

        Liked by 4 people

    2. Not to.mention all the heinous acts the U.S. committed before WWII. Attacking other sovereign nations absent any provocation (e.g., Iraq, as just one example) is an overwhelmingly egregious violation of international norms. Hardly comparable with, say, a breach of protocol at an embassy dinner.

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  6. Peace or pieces? The USA is one of the most, if not the most, disruptive countries in the world when it comes to interfering and overthrowing small countries. Although 1953 is hardly the first time, going all the way back into the early 1800’s, for the post WWII era we can probably start with the CIA/MI6’s coup in Iran, 19 August 1953, Patrice Lumumba in 1960 (actual execution in January 1961) in Congo. and on and on.
    The intercept has a nice article about recent coups in Africa by Nick Turse. These are not just the spy agencies but the coupled military services training and cooperative arrangements.
    https://theintercept.com/2022/01/26/burkina-faso-coup-us-military/
    We badly need to shut down the CIA, the NSA and most of the current military. The continued, and relatively consistent, program of foreign coups for so very long, brings the central question of who is really in charge versus who is window dressing, despite political parties and despite who is in the white house, or congress.

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    1. the dilemma is that hitting the streets is no longer an effective strategy, so what is left for proactive types like us? are already constrained by our exiguous numbers and that many of us live overseas [philippines for me]. i’m parlous-bewildered and tumescent w/ frustration.

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      1. Hitting the streets is no longer safe, either, Jeanie. We saw what happened to the protesters in 2020, and more and more states are passing anti-protest laws, such that in some places, motorists can run their vehicles into protesters and face no criminal or civil penalties.

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        1. We protesters back in the day Denise were college kids. 18-year old hippies. We started the protest and a few oldsters joined us. Where are these college kids today? I bet you that all of wja’s readers are over 65-years old. The kids are not interested in geopolitics it seems. When was the last time there as a protest at Berkley University?

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          1. The college kids today are doing their protesting, if any, on social media. And again, as bad as it was sometimes in the ’60s, it’s arguably worse to be out there today, in some ways. Rubber bullets, being rounded up and detained by law enforcement with no insignia, militarized police with itchy trigger fingers, being relegated to distant “free speech” zones, all in addition to the same tear gas and strong-arm tactics used in the ’60s. And the vehicular homicide counter-protesters, of course. I’ve done my share of protesting over the years, but I don’t think I’d risk it today.

            P.S. Not quite over 65 yet….

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            1. as an octogenarian, i was teaching in japan back in the early~mid-1960s, and i can assure you, the majority of japanese, both on the streets and among university students, abhorred and abjured the US, to such a degree i was intermittently urinated on when i walked around in urban areas, particularly in tokyo, hiroshima, nagasaki, yokohama, matsuyama, and osaka [there were no public toilets back then, so males micturated in the streets]… and not only b/c we ‘gaijin’ [who were all assumed to be americans] towered over them, or occupied every one of their islands w/ weaponry and military bases, or heedlessly and criminally destroyed their cities w/ atomic bombs and fire-bombs [in the early ’60s the streets were be-spattered w/ the hideous deformities of radiation and burn victims],… genocides for which not a single japanese was compensated [don’t swallow US propaganda and prevarications on the subject of US oh-so-charitable compensations back then; it’s pig-poo], or behaved as if the country belonged to the US, raped their females [likely males as well], or introduced diseases for which the japanese had no immunities… i could yap on in a tiresome inventory… no, the primary reason they loathed americans was for their blatant and bloated hubris… just as wja and others on this blog have so percipiently pointed out. the US has manifestly amplified that hubris by an order of magnitude since the early 1960s.

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            2. Denise, I think “if any” is closer to the mark. “Protesting” over social media is no protest at all … besides, employers use the internet to vet job applicants (asking for personal email and websites). Who wants to risk blowing a chance at decent bucks by coming across as something other than a team player? Not nobody, not no how.
              I seem to recall a lot of shouting, chanting & marching in 2020. Where were all those people in 2021, gearing up for the next election? Or were all their issues solved with Trump’s defeat?
              (Tiresome Old-Timer remark coming up.)
              I’m pushing 68, was a member of the SDS (Students for a Democratic Society) and – as the draft loomed in my future – participated in the anti-war marches in Chicago. Ten thousand people in the street gets media attention, and not just locally. The anti-war movement dissolved when the war ended and the goal was achieved.
              Like the Democratic party, contemporary protest movements come off as a collection of special interest groups who have no common ground, only demands for rights for their particular group, usually at the expense of others.
              As an old friend put it, “That ain’t protestin’. That’s just pissin’ and moanin’.”
              (No disrespect meant, Denise, but to use asterisks would certainly diminish the effect of that observation.)

              Liked by 2 people

              1. Hmmmm….I know that employers will check potential hires’ Facebook—uh, Meta—pages, but I’ve never heard of, nor have I ever personally experienced, having to turn over personal emails or sites. I believe that requesting these things would violate privacy laws (akin to asking age or marital status).

                As for protests of 10,000 people making the news, I respectfully observe that that was then, this is now. There were, in fact, multiple protests that large against our going into Iraq in 2003. There were only about 100 of us here in Cleveland, but estimates ranged into the millions globally, with many being U.S. centered:
                https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/15_February_2003_anti-war_protests.

                But such widespread pushback was almost completely suppressed by MSM. In effect, the collective protests were rendered invisible.

                Standing Rock and the Occupy movement are the most recent examples of mass protest I can recall. There have been demonstrations against various other pipeline and extraction projects (one involving Resolution Copper Mine in AZ comes to mind), although these haven’t been large-scale. But there again, pipeline companies are now co-opting local law enforcement to physically remove protesters, and states are passing laws against such protests. In some cases, as we saw in Charlottesville, for example, it can be fatal to protest. These circumstances, which did not exist in the ’60s, would make anyone hesitate. Greta Thunberg has been spectacularly successful, but she began in a much safer place. If I were 21 and knew there was a chance I’d be hauled away by a thug in body armor and thrown into a van, then taken to an anonymous cell somewhere and held incommunicado for an indefinite period, as happened in Portland in 2020, I’d limit my protesting to NOT in-person forms, too.

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              2. They can ask for email addresses (but, as you say, not email) and websites. And yes, it isn’t legal to ask a job applicant’s age, but they can – and do – ask what year you graduated from high school. I came across this back in 2014 when my Mom was looking for a part-time job: every application asked for the year she graduated from high school. That’s a fairly accurate way of determining age, I’d say.
                As for protests … yes, it’s become down right un-American. But, to paraphrase Allardyce Merriweather, “Every action carries a particle of risk.” And don’t kid yourself: anti-war protesters in the Vietnam days were beaten, tear-gassed, thrown in jail, and then there was Kent State … and the 1968 Democratic Convention in Chicago. But they kept turning out year after year.
                (For the record, I left the land of my birth because I could no longer live in good conscience with what it had become. I no longer recognized the country or its people. So I split, a few months shy of my 65th birthday. Gotta walk it like you talk it.)

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              3. thank you for elucidating the realities about ’60s and 70s protests, butsudanbill. my creeping presbiophrenia needed your booster-shot of clarification. unlike you who simply deracinated, i married a canadian i met at cornell in order to escape the befouled swamp of the US, who promptly promised me we would seek international contracts rather than domestic contracts in the US. by 1962, we were already working overseas, primarily in ‘developing’ countries, and we have never regretted doing so. our 7 ‘issue’ agree; they feel privileged to have been raised in 3rd/4th-world countries. as i’ve previously mentioned, ‘ad nauseum’, we now live in a minuscule baranguy on mindoro island in the philippines. we could never endure returning to the US, w/ the exception perhaps of erecting a tent on a rock kilometres off a US coast or territory. of course, we erumpently and legitimately deserve the epithet of ‘escape artists’, and we are indebted to americans like wja, denise, dennis, and so many others on this blog-site who remained to carry on the burdensome fardel for ‘good’ from the home-front.

                i note the insert of ‘sudan’ in your moniker; is that where you are domiciled?

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              4. The handle is a nickname bestowed upon me by a singer I used to work with. She was a Buddhist, and when she converted to that faith, I provided her with a butsudan, which can be likened to a tabernacle.
                I reside in The Netherlands. My sole source of income is my Social Security, currently $1,858.00 per month. And you can bet your boots I am grateful for the boon of socialized medicine.

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              5. you are clearly one of the minimalist persuasion; surviving on that paltry pension in a usuriously expensive country like the netherlands is a remarkable achievement! my husbnd’s and my combined pensions enable us to survive reasonably well, but only b/c we live in a 3rd-world country, the PI.

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            1. that is a galactic idea, wja. why did no one propose such an inspired suggestion before? i’m serious! i would ask all my grand bantlings to sign into your youth-demographic blog …which is actually far more than a blog; your ‘bracing views’ is a classroom offering a hefty dose of electrified discussion post-your-post… tho’ at this nexus your plate is likely overflowing w/ far more than you can manage to consume.

              Liked by 1 person

        2. good goofus, den! where are the equipollent spirits of goodwill when we need them? i’m clueless too about who’s in charge… anyone? everyone? i conjecture it is such a complex and anfractuous anastomosis of ‘responsibility’ [hah!] and political/corporate dynamics that it precludes our uncovering their hidey-holes. remaining anonymous guarantees their power over us peasants. on the other hand, we peasants do at least have the power to cease buying their shitola, to recuse their adverts w/ our discriminating nay-or-yay mental machinery, and to abjure their agendas. however, if 74 million nitwits actually voted for trump and persist in attending his hate-mongering rallies, the US is in deep-doodoo. how do we reconfigure the brains of people who are so eager to hate and discriminate? it’s as if they feel so impuissant in their personal lives, they find joy and purpose in aligning themselves w/some militant politico whose fairy-powder of power will be sprinkled over their own heads and heartless corpi.

          Liked by 1 person

    2. Spot on! The question of who’s really in charge is, imo, the most pressing concern in the U.S. right now, aside from the 800-pound gorilla of climate change. But even there, if the right people were running the country, we’d have been seriously, tangibly addressing climate change decades ago.

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  7. William, the TomDispatch Today in a way, explains the question here.

    Robert Lipsyte, ‘The Glory of the Greatest Shines On’

    He tells it like it is! After the US spent $Trillions and $TRILLIONS of US Tax Dollars on the Weapons of Death and Destruction for “National Security” all that got the Taxpayer for all that money is the National insecurity State Americans find themselves in.
    https://tomdispatch.com/why-is-ali-the-last-american-hero/

    On the subject of Glory, I have been posting the video of US Secretary Pompeo in many of The Washington Post articles on the Tug of War between the US and Russia over Ukraine.

    His friendly University audience were clapping and cheering when he boasting about his idea of glory, “I was CIA Director. We Lied, we cheated, we stole.
    It’s – it was like – We had entire training courses. It reminds you of the glory of the American Experiment.”

    This video of Pompeo went viral everywhere, except in the US.
    Anti-Trump CNN or MSNBC didn’t show it over and over again all day long for Days, as they usually do for anything that discredits the Trump Administration.
    Most probably, that was at the direction of the CIA.

    That’s BLIND American Patriotism for you!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Imagine, after each phrase, if he had added “the American people”:

      We lied … to the American people.
      We cheated … the American people.
      We stole … from the American people.

      I think fewer of those people would have clapped.

      Liked by 3 people

      1. i dare say, wja! an argute observation. nonetheless, following your supposition, the applause rose from a segment of our society that is categorically and even more wildly worthy of condemnation: lying, cheating, and stealing from any perspective, no matter who the victims are, is deplorable. it is even more deplorable when declared by an affluent, weaponized prick like pompeo and his icky-ilk to lie, cheat, and steal from groups of people and countries who are depauperate, at least compared to pompeo’s applauding audience. my skin ripples w/ disgust that there persists such hoards and herds of contorted mental perverts who could endorse, nay extol, this malevolent twaddle. NOT exalting this twaddle, simply b/c the phrase “to/from americans” had been appended to pompeo’s hortatives, is a not-so-subtle adumbration of how bigoted, self-serving, nationalistic, chauvinistic, and devoid of compassion for non-americans [you know, that ‘me-first’, america-first mentality] that so many americans are suffused w/…. i suspect most in the audience were trump acolytes.

        Liked by 1 person

  8. Just….staggering, Ray. Obviously, intelligence gathering requires stealth and, naturally, deception. That kind of thing has surely been going on since homo sapiens emerged, and it will continue as long as there are separate countries, tribes, or societies. But to cavalierly brag about it and be proud of it as a way of life, to do things like that and be happy about it…

    Will Pompeo ever comprehend that he was hoist with his own petard?

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    1. thank you for the alert and link to your interview w/ burt cohen, wja; i listened to your soothing, sibilant voice and burt’s more gravelly one in its entirety. you 2 have mollifying influences that, if tuned into by a groundswell of listeners, would indicate who the reasonable adults are, in both the journalistic and political spectra, and toward whom even trumpian americans should lend an ear. onward we must march in that ‘hopium’ [a neologism that the inimitable documentarian and witty societal commentator michael moore recently coined].

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  9. On the subject of Peace being needed, this is happening in the biggest Influencer of US Foreign Policy in The Middle East.
    The only Time there is overwhelming bi-partisanship in Congress is on matters affecting Israel, and raising the Dod Budget.
    Bi-partisanship is non-existent on the many serious issues affecting Americans.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. In todays New York Times….wow!

    …”As President Joe Biden tries to forge a united allied response to Russian aggression in Ukraine, unity on the home front is strained by a Republican Party torn between traditional hawks in the leadership and a wing still loyal to Donald Trump’s isolationist instincts and pro-Russian sentiment.

    Republican leaders, by and large, have struck an aggressive posture, encouraging Biden to get tougher on Russia, through immediate sanctions on Russian energy exports and more lethal aid to Ukraine’s military. But that message has been undermined by the party’s far right, which has questioned why the United States would side with Ukraine at all and has obliquely suggested with no evidence that the president is bolstering his son Hunter Biden’s business interests.

    Driven by a steady diet of pro-Russian or anti-interventionist rhetoric from Fox News host Tucker Carlson, the Republican right has become increasingly vocal in undercutting not only U.S. foreign policy but also the positions of Republican leaders.

    Republicans Donald Trump Jr., Senate candidate J.D. Vance of Ohio, and Reps. Matt Rosendale of Montana, Lauren Boebert of Colorado, Paul Gosar of Arizona, Thomas Massie of Kentucky and Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia have weighed in to oppose confronting Russia or to suggest nefarious intentions on Biden’s part. Trump told conservative podcast host Lou Dobbs that Biden’s reported plan to send as many as 50,000 troops to bolster Europe’s defenses was “crazy.”

    https://www.seattletimes.com/nation-world/republican-rift-on-ukraine-could-undercut-u-s-appeals-to-allies/

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  11. This is from CNN:

    “US and Ukrainian officials are not on the same page regarding the “risk levels” of a potential Russian invasion of Ukraine, a senior Ukrainian official told CNN yesterday. A 20-minute phone call between President Biden and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky yesterday “did not go well,” the official said. Biden warned his Ukrainian counterpart that a Russian invasion may be imminent, saying that it is now virtually certain in the coming months. Zelensky, however, said the threat from Russia remains “dangerous but ambiguous,” emphasizing it is not certain that an invasion will take place. The Biden administration yesterday also called for the first UN Security Council meeting on the situation along the Russia-Ukraine border to discuss Moscow’s recent aggressions. NATO, the defense alliance set up to promote peace and stability, is also rapidly trying to reinforce its presence in the region to help ease tensions.”

    Get this: The U.S. is more worried about a Russian invasion than the Ukrainians are! Plus NATO, a “defense alliance” that promotes peace (!), is bulking up military forces “to ease tensions.”

    What a tribute to Orwell!

    Liked by 3 people

  12. The Military Warsaw Pact dissolved with the Soviet Union in 1991.

    American Analysts thinking they can read Putin’s mind say they know he’s an aggressor ready to invade Ukraine.
    The only evidence given to us is the same pictures of snow covered trucks parked, that have been parked in the same spot since before the US created a crisis over it.

    We are living in Dangerous Times when a small cabal of powerful people can possibly lead this world to Armageddon-WWIII and tell us they can’t make the evidence Public for National Security reasons. That’s Orwellian!

    Russia was at Berlin and East Germany only as a consequence of WWII, and as an ally of the US and the West.
    When WWII ended, suddenly the Russian ally that did more to defeat Hitler than the US and England was enemy #1, with American and Soviet troops facing each other in place until the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991 during the H.R. Bush Presidency. US propaganda says Putin is bad because he was a low level KGB Agent but ignore the fact Bush was DIRECTOR of the CIA before he was President. That’s like being without sin and tossing the 1st stone.

    I recommend reading this for a different Historical perspective of the 1991 Soviet collapse under the CIA trained and Ideologically indoctrinated President of the United States than US MASS Media will show the American Public. The following link leads to revealing many powerful famous American names involved in the gang rape of Russia. Now it’s the US led gang up of the many NATO Nations against one Nation, and there’s something wrong with that picture with the US and the West claiming to be the Peace loving side.
    https://russia-insider.com/en/rape-russia-interview-f-william-engdahl-audio/ri23182

    I believe the US made the verbal promise to the weakened Russia if they repatriated their troops in East Germany, NATO would not move East toward Russia.

    I totally understand and can see the massive inflow of US weapons and Military advisors already in non-NATO Ukraine, with all the NATO War exercises in the Black Sea and constant rotating Military exercises in all those NATO Nations added since 1991, Putin has solid reasons to see, as I can see, that NATO advance to Russia’s border as an EXISTENTIAL THREAT and OFFENSIVE, not DEFENSIVE in Nature.

    It’s so absurdist! US SOS Blinken proclaims in the US-Russia Tug of War over Ukraine as the last buffer between Russia and NATO this “bedrock principle” that means no tolerance for overt or tacit spheres of influence, no restrictions on the sovereign right of nations to choose their own alliances, no privileging one state’s security requirements over those of another.” What BS! As if NATO is not a sphere of US influence

    As Putin saw constant NATO War exercises close to Russia, under the bedrock principle of “the sovereign right of nations to choose their own alliances” Russia exercised that same principle having military exercises with it’s ally Belarus in face of advancing NATO Militarization. The US and NATO call that “aggression.”

    Putin sees the weapons transfers and NATO getting closer and closer to Russia’s border confirms his outlook NATO is bringing on an existential threat not only to Russia, but to all of us.

    Only the American Public can stop the unimaginable from becoming real. All it takes is speaking up!
    I’m constantly shot down for speaking up in Washington Post discussions on Ukraine.

    Of course it would reinforce my view published by the Kansas City Times over 2 Generations ago, on September 13, 1976, this 1 line among so many, “He wanted to bring to the Public’s attention an “idea being put out subtly and deceptively” by the government that we have to get prepared for a War with Russia.”

    That 1976 FUTURE is NOW with the Revelation of the details GENERALLY unfolding in the spirit of the letter. The American People have been prepared, and are being prepared, to distract them from facing the growing Divisions and problems within the UN-United States.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. It seems that so many American promises, even formal treaties and trade pacts, can’t survive a change in administration. Not sure why other countries would put much trust in our promises, though I’m guessing other world powers are no different.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Really read these Lyrics– they apply so much to this world of today Yes, how long must we sing this song? Even tho written by some Ireland Kids back in 83 I believe. Vietnam, Iraq, Afghanistan, meddling in the Middle East, and elsewhere countless other incursions into countries. Its millions crying out as humankind as “we eat and drink as tomorrow they die” Its especially a song that still resonates today. Its about any “Bloody” day that’s the reality of this World’s many innocent people while most of us choose to look away…!

      Liked by 2 people

    1. Interesting how all the major papers are publishing editorials in lock-step. You’d think there’d be some variation between the supposedly liberal NY Times and the conservative WSJ, but no. Hmmm….wonder why that is…?

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      1. Maybe this is the why? Mainstream news is bought and paid for; and is a poisonous form of psychological mind manipulation. They produce content that is well designed to feed their site’s followers a daily dose of fear and confusion.All, and I do believe all content is controlled to preach a strictly mind altering experience for “whatever side” one leans toward.

        Liked by 2 people

        1. why deterge one’s benighted mental furniture w/ unvarnished, verifiable facts when said-furniture can be saturated w/ profitable poisons and nocent manipulations w/ such unencumbered facility?

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  13. “Joe Biden might think he’s flexing hard with this talk of military power projection. All he is doing, however, is further underscoring the absolute dismal state of combat readiness that the US military finds itself in after 20 years of low-intensity conflict in a losing cause.” Scott Ritter – former US Marine Corps intelligence officer.

    https://www.rt.com/op-ed/547526-us-power-biden-ukraine/

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  14. In several articles back, I posted the Message sent to all 100 US Senators in November concerned with the leading indicators I see Developing Domestically in the Divided US not leading to a good Future place.
    I’m still getting Newsletter from many of them, but not one answered personally addressing the issues I raised.

    I’m in the process of writing to all 100 Senators again, about 66 done. It’s a long process. This Time it’s about the leading indicators on the World Stage spelling out how I see it’s the US inciting for War.
    Although I got many computer generated generic email acknowledging receipt, I finally got a reply from one of the most well known Senators in the US Congress.

    Is it the Senator himself replying to the substance in my Message? I’ll still have to reply through the embedded Senate email system.

    Prudence tells me not to mention his name because it would be instantly recognized. This is what he wrote on his fancy Senate letterhead,
    Dear Mr. Cormier:

    Thank you for contacting me regarding your concerns about Russia. I appreciate the opportunity to hear from you on this issue.

    I have long believed that Vladimir Putin is not – and has never been – America’s friend. Whether it was the brazen nerve gas attack in England on a former Soviet agent and his daughter, cyber attacks on the American electrical grid and institutions, meddling in American elections, aggressions against Ukraine, or continued actions in Syria in support of Bashar al-Assad, Putin is committed to harming the security and well-being of the United States.

    Putin’s actions and intentions against United States citizens – and our allies – go far beyond one election. Putin’s Russia is attempting to strike at the very heart of the freedoms, democratic values, and liberty all Americans hold dear. As you senator, I will ensure that the current administration takes the necessary steps to curtail Russian aggression and influence here at home and abroad.

    The opportunity to hear from you about the issues confronting our nation is not only essential to representative democracy. We will not see eye-to-eye on every issue; however, I promise to always give your concerns the consideration they deserve.

    I encourage you to visit my website — — as it will have information on the most recent activities before the U.S. Senate. You can also sign up for our e-mail newsletter, Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube pages which will provide the latest information and updates on the major issues facing our state and our nation.

    Thank you again for contacting me. I truly appreciate the opportunity to hear from you and am honored to have the opportunity to represent your interests in the U.S. Senate.

    Sincerely,

    Assuming it really is him, I have ideas how to respond to the many specific objections in his reply.
    Naturally, considering myself to be part of this larger group, does anyone else have any ideas or suggestions?

    If this one Senator could be converted, he could influence many others. Believe me on that.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. i repine that ‘he’ will not be converted, rj cormier; it is a stock letter [scrutinize the platitudes, homilies, and good-cheer assurances]. it was likely popped out by an’ aide-de-champ’ who in turn obtained this poppycock from the senator’s corporate/MIC- supported piggery. the senator himself is on his most recently purchased yacht, floating offshore of a caribbean island, sipping bay rum brandies-on-ice, and playing w/ himself as he waits for his mistress to finish her pre-copulatory ablutions. this cynicism sources from an unapologetic pyrrhonist [moi] regarding our recent crop of cabalistic gigolos in both the senate and the house.

      Liked by 1 person

    2. I don’t know how you’d go about convincing this senator that everything he said isn’t 100% factual, Ray. Or, if he actually does know the truth of things, to publicly admit the false narratives. Particularly if his state pulls in a lot of DoD dollars.

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      1. All things are possible, Denise.

        The Apostle Paul was anti-Christ to the extreme on his way to Damascus to arrest believers in the new Jewish Sect calling themselves Christians. He was touched by the Christ Spirit converting him into the most passionate Christian advocate.

        In reply, I will answer the US ideological indoctrinated beliefs in his email and we’ll see soon enough.
        Just the fact he or one of his aides authorized to write in his name, is a sign what I wrote got a reaction, so I have to reply with Words that will nurture a better understanding.

        In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
        The same was in the beginning with God […] And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us.

        I posted above in the hope some of the regulars here might have some choice Words to refute the 2 relevant anti-Putin paragraphs in the email to incorporate them in my reply.?

        “I have long believed that Vladimir Putin is not – and has never been – America’s friend”

        Since the 2014 US orchestrated Coup/regime change of the Russian friendly government, more than a few Times I heard Military, FBI, Intelligence and Think Tank “experts” say “Putin is not America’s friend. He does not have America’s best interests at heart.”
        I thought it was delusional and unrealistic when the experts on CNN & MSNBC said it, and when this Senator says it.

        Putin is President of Russia and rightly has Russia’s best interests at heart, not American. The US doesn’t have Russia’s best interests in heart, or we would not be seeing this US incitement for War the MSM Propagandists magnify.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. “Putin is President of Russia and rightly has Russia’s best interests at heart, not American. The US doesn’t have Russia’s best interests in heart…”

          No, the U.S has its own interests at heart, and therein lies the danger. Countries can’t continue to be insular if the planet is to survive.

          As for communicating with the senator, I sincerely wish you luck, Ray. As his is not a fact-based mindset, I don’t have a clue how to get through to him. Mentioning mushroom clouds and his grandchildren, maybe?

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    3. I finished sending this to all 100 US Senators.

      Good Day Senator,

      As a World Citizen Child of God at 77, and a Canadian, I sent the same Message to all 100 Senators November 5,8,15 &16, not as Representatives of Local Parochial interests, but as National and International Leaders.

      It took that long finding an address and ZIP code in all 50 States since the Senate email system has no provision to hear opinions other than from Americans. Stating I’m Canadian in the 1st sentence & using my actual name and email address in the Senate forms, a Senate majority sends me their Newsletters without addressing anything in the November Message concerned with US Domestic Developments as if whoever opens the email didn’t ever read it.

      This Message also going to all 100 Senators concerns the Dangerous Developments on the International Stage. Senators have almost as much influence collectively as the Executive Branch. I can only hope and pray Saner heads prevail, although from what I see on CNN, MSNBC & FOX, that seems unlikely to reduce International tensions, but increase them.

      Putin doesn’t want War. No sane person would want MUTUALLY ASSURED DESTRUCTION unless there is a subconscious desire for SUICIDE BY NUKES.

      All Putin wants is NATO to stop advancing to Russia’s border just like Americans didn’t want Soviet missiles in Cuba. In 1962, the US was ready to start Armageddon/WWIII over Russian missiles in Cuba reacting to the US putting their missiles aimed at Russia in new NATO Member Turkey.

      Americans aren’t exceptional.

      Just like the US in 1962, Putin correctly sees the steady incremental advance of NATO to the border of Russia since the 1991 collapse of the Soviet Union and the Military Warsaw Pact opposite NATO, is not defensive, but offensive. I see that Independently watching from CanaDa.

      He is following that 1962 US playbook. If it was Good when the US did it, is it EVIL because Putin is drawing his red line just like the US already did in 1962?

      US paid Propagandists use words like, “since Russia’s aggression in Ukraine.” That’s how subtle Propaganda is.

      Trucks on Russia’s side of the border, covered in snow and parked for weeks, is aggression? What is aggressive, is the US pouring $Billions of weapons into Ukraine, with NATO troops already in Ukraine, with more possibly on the way, inflaming the situation on the ground.

      This confirms in Putin’s eyes it’s the US as the hegemon beating the War Drums, leading to Armageddon/WWIII the US put on the table in 1962.

      According to CNN & MSNBC News reports, the Ukrainians themselves are not worried about a Russian invasion. This is a US freak out to distract from the increasing Domestic problems and Divisions I wrote about in November.

      This is more interesting for me to watch unfolding from CanaDa because of this 1 line among so many more in my Curriculum Vitae, as recorded by The Kansas City Times September 13, 1976,

      “He wanted to bring to the Public’s attention “an idea being put out subtly and deceptively” by the government that we have to get prepared for a War with Russia.”

      That 1976 FUTURE is NOW with the Revelation of the details GENERALLY unfolding in the spirit of the letter.

      With the benefit of 45 years hindsight, the last 8 years of intensified Military, FBI and Intelligence “experts” on TV constantly, unanimously, demonizing Putin and Russia since the 2014 US orchestrated Coup/regime change of the Russian friendly government, installing an Neo-Nazi anti-Russian government, the American People have been prepared as the majority of comments in all Washington Post articles on the US-Russian Tug of War over Ukraine prove beyond any doubt.

      As a further Sign of The Times The Kansas City Times did a followup on ALL SOULS DAY, November 2, 1976, publishing this Historical Newspaper record:

      You may imagine my Surprise and Wonder when the TV movie ‘THE DAY AFTER’ Kansas City was incinerated in a Nuclear Holocaust was shown 7 years to the month later, on November 20, 1983?

      Most probably, I was the only person on Earth watching it that night to NOTE at THE END, the movie pauses at the same picture frame The Kansas City Times published on ALL SOULS DAY, November 2, 1976, this being the TV screenshot:

      Those Historical records are Signs of the Times of where this World is at Today. They can dismissed as being of no consequence, but the Historical Record cannot be changed.

      Only Time will tell. Reading about and watching the hyped up US News Today, that Time may be sooner than most People dare think?

      Obviously, I had nothing to do with those Historical FACTS come into being other than being a Messenger. Then and Now!

      I thank God I’m still alive at 77 able to point to the Historical Records

      Peace & Blessing

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  15. “Whether it was the brazen nerve gas attack in England on a former Soviet agent and his daughter, cyber attacks on the American electrical grid and institutions, meddling in American elections, aggressions against Ukraine”……all unproven bovine excrement!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. “bovine excrement”… delicious, dennis. another euphemistic equivoque that endows MSM’s mendacity w/ a soupçon of civilizing appéritifs.

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    2. In 2018 England lost out to Russia in the competition to host the FIFA Soccer World Cup, one of the biggest money making Tourist attractions.
      We were told at that time only Russia had the Novichok nerve agent which was so deadly, only a drop killed instantly.
      I believe it was a British false flag in the vain attempt to discourage the passionate British soccer fans from going to Russia and seeing it’s not as bad a place as Western Propaganda projects.

      Sergi Skirpal was a convicted Russian double Agent Traitor and was in a Russian prison from 2006 until he was released in a spy swap in 2010.

      It defies all logic and reason to believe Putin would wait until Russia was about to host one of the most prestigious sports events of this World and and have Skirpal killed in England when he had 4 years to have the job done in a Russian prison.

      It’s old news and no questions are asked as MI6 made the Skirpals disappear.

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  16. No doubt those are stock answers for all US Political Leadership re Russia, and the bottom half is a stock answer by all Senators to residents of their States. There were only 2 Senators with email systems accepted email from CanaDa and a Canadian address. All the others accept email only from within their own States so I had an address I use writing to those 2 Senators.

    It’s unlikely there are that many voters in the Senator’s State that write with a pro-Putin rational in this US War hype propaganda that AI can read my Message and computer generate a reply specific to it as with the opening sentence, ‘Thank you for contacting me regarding your concerns about Russia. I appreciate the opportunity to hear from you on this issue.’

    Of course it could always being an aide writing for the Senator. Even so, the foot in in the door!

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  17. I saw this headline at “breaking defense”:
    Russia has what it needs for ‘horrific’ invasion of Ukraine, DoD leaders say

    “While we don’t believe that President Putin has made a final decision to use these forces against Ukraine, he clearly now has that capability,” Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin said.

    I wonder why America’s invasions of Iraq and Afghanistan were not described as “horrific”? Do we drop pillows instead of bombs?

    Liked by 2 people

    1. All those poor 3rd world Nations the US invaded since WWII didn’t have what it needed to stop the horrific US invasions

      I believe it’s God’s Judgment and Justice at work in this Material World, all those poor Countries drove the richest Nation with the most expensive Military this World ever produced out of their Countries in the most humiliating ways.

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      1. Ray my friend. You were doing so well. Contributing several excellent and inciteful posts to this forum devoid of religious commentary. Then you went and ruined it all. By claiming it seems that the supernatural “God” of your choosing has stood idly by since WWII and finally decided to interfere with, and bring justice, to, these worldly geopolitical conflicts after they have caused so much human suffering and death. Begging the question as to why such a “God” deserves our respect and prayers. Extraordinary claims require extraordinary explanation and evidence eh?

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        1. tuques off to you dennis; you are not only the voice of sanity, reason, and logic, you are also a fearless denouncer of the tendentious idiocy of god-tropes and other human-manipulated mantras which pollute and derange the developing brains of children. these are lies xians pretend are validated by ‘the-good-book’ mythologies, however, they dare not tarnish their delusional brushes by informing children, perched primly in their sunday school chairs, that ALL mythologies are falsifications of reality [doublespeak for lies]. if there are lessons in these mythologies that will help guide young children toward honourable, compassionate, and meaningful lives, fine. so be it. but allow children the dignity and respect to decide for themselves what features of each myth or promulgation seem logical to embrace.

          the bible-beating god-people never dignify the searching, curious brains of children by acknowledging their innate sentience and allowing them to think for themselves. they insist children must be dictated to in order for the god-people to maintain authoritarian control over children’s molding processes, an authoritarian control that maintains power over susceptible children.

          however, i must concede that there are many adults across our globe who, like r.j. cormier, find solace, tranquilitude,, purpose, and hope, no matter how sanguine or illusionary, by tucking these myths into their cortical furniture… which is ok, so long as their delusions do no damage to anyone else… especially children. for me, that is the quintessence of free will guided by ‘the good’, not by god-despots. r.j. cormier seems to be one whose over-arching cynosure is ‘the good’ not the god-despots.

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          1. Thanks jeanie….I guess my views on the inclusion of “God” tropes in posters comments mirrors that of Christopher Hitchens…..

            “….. I hope I’ve made it clear, that I’m perfectly happy for people to have these toys, and to play with them at home, and hug them to themselves and so on, and to share them with other people who come around and play with the toys. So that’s absolutely fine. They are not to make me play with these toys. I will not play with the toys. Don’t bring the toys to my house, don’t say my children must play with these toys, don’t say my toys might be a condom – here we go again – are not allowed by their toys. I’m not going to have any of that.”

            Liked by 1 person

            1. the 2 chrises, hitchens and hedges, have been my mental ‘hitching’ posts and see-thru ‘hedges’ for decades; i vaticinate they have been yours as well, dennis. they are the philosophical and moral mirrors that reflect the verifiable science of neuroscientists like sam harris, physicists like lawrence krauss, anthropologists like jared diamond, and evolutionary biologists like richard dawkins, w/out whom the 21st century would be intellectually depauperate.

              Liked by 1 person

          2. Jeanie, for all your concern about children, my Personal Faith in the Higher Eternal Being opened my eyes to see myself as spelled out in the 1st words in the Message to the Senators, “As a World Citizen Child of God at 77”
            I could have been rude expressing this American reality in other words, “the Senate email system has no provision to hear opinions other than from Americans.”

            That’s precisely the problem with the US raising tensions with Russia over Ukraine.

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            1. you are guided by daniel berrigan’s definition of faith, ray; “the good brings to it the good”, as is so oft-repeated by chris hedges. my only ‘god’ is precisely that, ‘the good’ w/ a doubled ‘o’, not a supernatural father figure, particularly that malevolent, vindictive, jealous, genocidal one depicted in the OT, nor the faStuous one in the NT, that non-existent jesus-god who putatively claimed no one could enter the pearly gates, kingdom of heaven, everlasting life, etc. except through ‘him’self. what arrogant donkey-dung. and the ‘sacrificial lamb’ trope of the crucifixion removes responsibility from individuals for their own actions, especially those which bring misery to others. believe what you want, cherry-pick from the bible what you want, but let ‘the good’ be your guide.

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  18. I’ve been kinda distant lately… I’ve had a bunch of thoughts buzzing around in my bonnet. I believe I’m now considered an outlier when it comes to the general consensus… But…MAYBE…This…
    Our known magnetosphere has now been hyper electrified with the newest connectivity speeds offered by the 5-6G frequencies….The worlds elite just finished a
    “ meet & greet brunch “ around fantastic tables in gilded chalets outside a little Swiss hamlet. Maybe this saber rattling is just the psychological operation needed to keep us well occupied? Why pry into the CEO’s business when we could be better entertained by some futuristic war porn. In my humble opinion; we are all being played for the fool. Make no mistake about why there is so much tension throughout Gods green earth. Study Tesla and Wilhelm Reich and learn about our bodies own electro magnetic nature and the connections between our own quantum/ mitochondrial physical presence inside the electro magnetic frequencies of our universes aether. Study how brainwave patterning is being applied for good medicine and for bad. The very tools we use for communication and are so addicted to; can broadcast the particular frequencies that will program your brainwave patterning to reflect the tensions you sense. They learned this decades ago when they silenced these geniuses, stole their knowledge and buried it within their laboratories, for their own benefits. Every emotion a human is capable of has been mapped and can be easily manipulated.
    Remember who invented this internet technology that our bodies are now immersed in on a 24/7 basis. Frequencies from top to bottom. We have been slow walked into this digital prison for many decades.
    I have been reading authors who have spent time diving into the patents regarding the “future” “they” have decided would be in our best interest. I’m sure that many will say that
    “That boy has lost his marbles”! But, language in filed patents have dropped enough crumbs to make me a believer that while we are playing a 2 dimensional chess game against our fellow earth inhabitants; they are playing a game on a whole nother
    multi-dimensional board.
    I’ve been a big fan of the folks who are trying to bring about the deeper truths connecting Science and Non-Duality. It all started years ago when I read, The Tao of Physics, by quantum physicist, Fritjof Capra and continues to this day; studying recently his newest offering, The Systems View of Life. I’m fascinated by the thresholds being exposed by quantum physicists; so here’s a few authors that have led me down several rabbit holes at once.
    On the mysterious substance WATER…
    Gilbert Ling, and Gerald Pollack, who wrote The Fourth Phase of Water, (on waters phases ) M.J. Pangman’s, Dancing With Water. (This book provides insight into the effects of electromagnetic fields, crystals, salts, and the importance of hydrogen and other gases in water).
    Desiring to understand the electro-magnetic nature of our creation has brought me to works like Arthur Firstenberg’s,
    Invisible Rainbow and Mae-Won Ho’s, The Rainbow and The Worm and author Emilio Del Guidice.
    Trace Demeyer, and Marino Moore, brought me to ancient indigenous views concerning the universe in their book, …Unraveling the Spreading Cloth of Time. I’ve read a lot about the scientific information from the ancient schools of thought and the atomic energy queries of war mongering regimes; that have been buried.
    There’s more to tell from other authors, but all of this knowledge has driven me to an interesting take on the behind the scenes actions of our IT/ MIC collaborative. It is provided by an outlying author named Elana Freeland. She has just finished her last book in a trilogy about the full spectrum dominance of our planet earth.
    If any of you look into this information; you will probably believe I am know standing in a puddle of my own marbles. But the more I realize the language of their patents; and my meager attempts at understanding the science from the books I’ve just outlined; the more truth I see in the conclusions she draws from these three novels. (First crumb on the trail…Look into a gentleman named Bernard Eastlund and his 1987 patent on HAARP)
    Her trilogy is …
    1. …Chem trails, HAARP, and the Full Spectrum Dominance of Plant Earth…
    2…. Under An Ionized Sky
    3… Geoengineered Transhumanism…
    It makes sense to me now why we spend so much on our “ military budgets “ and money is never denied to this endeavor.
    William, have you or any of the folks at Tom Dispatch or other retired military personnel been looking into the dual uses of these new technologies?
    I’ll end this lengthy explanation of the plank I am out walking on by saying… throw me a line and pull me back in… because I’m now a believer that there’s no place in the solar system where God’s natural rhythms and resonances roam free … anymore!
    I probably shouldn’t press send, but… at least you know why I’ve been a bit distant. I don’t know what to say anymore about war and the MIC. Except Maybe…. RESIST!

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    1. Is this relevant to your post UTEJACK?

      Despite a last-minute compromise with Verizon and AT&T brokered by the federal government that will at least temporarily limit deployment of 5G cell service around airports, limitations on airplane operations at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport still took effect at 9 p.m. Tuesday.

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      1. dennis, i posted a weighty response to a previous comment that you directed to r.j. cormier, but it is stuck in this costive system somewhere awaiting scrutiny by the invigilators. i discovered it was b/c i misspelled my surname by leaving out a ‘c’. so i tried 3Xs to repost it, but each time i repost, i’ve been informed that it is impossible b/c the posts are repeats of my original post, a post that was never accepted or passed thru in the 1st place! HUH? this is one of those catch-22 dilemmas that drives me battier than i already am. what should i do? please simplify your instructions as i am a dimwitted dildo about tekkie-patois.

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      2. Here’s a link Dennis, that describes the issues surrounding the altimeter interference opportunities that arise from the C-band 5G frequencies.

        “this frequency band may introduce harmful radio frequency (RF) interference to radar altimeters currently operating in the globally-allocated 4.2–4.4 GHz aeronautical band.”

        https://www.zdnet.com/article/whats-what-with-5g-and-airport-safety-faq/

        That’s obviously a huge concern.

        “The specific concern is that the altimeters’ radios may not filter out signals lapping over from another part of the spectrum, aka spurious emissions. In short, interference from C-Band 5G will keep the altimeters from working properly.“

        “Both smaller and older aircraft don’t have a filter in place that would allow them to only receive signals designated to their systems.”

        Pandit continued, “Radar Altimeters are allocated 4.2 to 4.4 GHz, and are based on a radar modulation known as Linear Frequency Modulation… Unfortunately, most altimeters in the field do not use a crystal oscillator to stabilize the signal, thus altimeter signals may drift outside or to the edges of the 4.2 and 4.4 GHz band.”

        This, combined with the altimeters’ high receiver sensitivity, means they’re all too susceptible to interference.

        US C-Band spectrum and European C-Band spectrum are not the same thing. In the EU, C-Band 5G works in the spectrum 3.4 to 3.8 GHz range. This is further away from the radar altimeters’ spectrum, which lies between 4.2 and 4.4 GHz.

        The chunk of spectrum known as C-Band lies between 3.7 GHz and 4.2 GHz and it’s capable of speeds in the 200-800Mbps range. In the past, it was used for satellite video providers and satellite phone services. AT&T and Verizon bought up the bulk of this spectrum for a combined $68 billion. You don’t spend that kind of money unless you plan on using it.

        So that’s the situation described further in the link. If you are a flyer it would be in ones best interest obviously to have had these issues worked out, don’t ya think💭🤔
        Of course nothing in our world today that is mired in it’s dense materialism is functioning synchronistically. Although we keep begging them to “get it together “…. it’s what you’re being paid for isn’t it leadership councils everywhere.

        But, and there’s always a “but” with an “ass” such as myself! My issues are with what’s not being revealed to us about what is going on behind the laboratory doors of IT/MIC. It involves their misuse of the Tesla and Reich’s understanding, files, and patents on energy. You are going to have to look at Freeland’s material to understand my concerns. She’s got videos out of your not into reading. But, her books carry the documentation that she uses to back up her claims. I just finished reading the 3 books and it has silenced me because it is all rather fantastical and I’m trying to process what she has pointed out. I’m definitely not smart enough to claim I understand or can corroborate all of what she believes he sees. But, there’s lists of patents and quotations that are very hard to explain away the intentions of the electro magnetic infrastructure that we are swimming in as we navigate this “brave new synthetic world”!
        Here’s a clue… I prefer the Schumann Resonance of the earth just fine… please stop altering he natural vibration!
        One thing I’ve learned; they will tell you that all is well with these frequencies. Don’t believe it, do some independent research and you will find plenty of good science that is being kept from the light of day. There’s trillion$ riding on these investments.
        You will have to look into what Tesla was knowing; then think about the word connectivity and you will see for yourself that there’s a reason for their technological alterations to our natural environment.

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    2. whew! that’s a mt-sagarmatha of elucidations to digest, utejack, but i finally managed, and i’m inside the tent of your brain-text 100%. should we even be online blogging those brains out?

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      1. Yes, Jeanie, I’m sure you have seen enough to raise those queries in the mind about what’s up with “all of that”
        You once ran some questions by your kin about what’s up with all the nano particulate matter whitening the natural blue hue of the skies above us. Well, I’m sure there’s a reason for everything I’m noticing and I didn’t stop looking for a clearer view. I believe at this point maybe your brainpower that you’ve shared with your offspring might have something to say further about my foray into miss freelands explanations for
        Why the white sky? I find their science fascinating and it’s all based upon the foundation of Tesla’s research. But, why haven’t we been told and then asked if this would be ok.

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        1. we will never be told by the power-elite, utejack; we must figure it out for ourselves, w/ critical inputs and elucidations by others, particularly from the sources you have mentioned

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            1. these are the ‘they’s myrmidons and facilitators, i expect, but the most powerful ‘theys’ remain cloaked in guises that will never be revealed to those of us who yearn to view their visages in fulgurant streams of sunlight.

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      2. I used to believe this was all about mitigation of a warming planet. What Tesla taught me was that these technologies are about “connectivity”. It’s a bit mind boggling but it is extremely fascinating to know what’s up! But, enough about the ways of the modern world. I found an interesting topic on the mathematics of divine expression and have decided to take a dive into it through the lens of a book on the mysteries of gematria. I wonder what Ray would think about this? There’s a bunch of mathematical linguistics hidden in the texts of the good book and elsewhere. The mind is such a powerful force when it’s in it’s creative mode uniting letters and numbers that hide deep truths. And this is also a fascinating science that should keep me from staring at the dangerous ideas presented by “them” for us to stress about. I hope you and all of yours are well and safe and experiencing happiness. We are having fun carrying water after our well went dry in October when they lowered the water table, diverting it for power elsewhere this winter. So it’s back to the spring head to fill up our jugs and of course swinging an ax to keep the stove well fed during the snaps of cold that fly through the mountains.

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        1. intriguing, indeed, utejack. am not familiar w/ the word ‘gematria’, only the greek word for geometry ‘geometria’. when my screaming back pain subsides, i’ll delve deeper into the intellectual ambit you have suggested to us.

          speaking of back pain, you must be equally suffering making endless forays to your water source and hauling pails of that remarkable substance to your demesne. did it ever begin to feel you were “DANCING WITH WATER” on your way home? our family of 9 [7 kids; 2 adults] were w/out water for a month in egypt’s eastern desert when our fountainhead, the aswan dam reservoir near the sudanese border, went dry, so i can empathize w/ the challenges you are facing.

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          1. My wife feels your pain. She lives with disc issues. I am blessed to have a spring to visit and she is so giving. People walk for water much further than I do every day, all over this beautiful creation. It’s life and life only; and so far my frame tolerates the exercise! Yes , I’m dancing with miss water and as I’ve told my friends when I sold the house and moved into the Yurt in this beautiful Forest… I’m having an intimate relationship with nature. Funny aside…
            When my mom came for a visit she looked at me as she stood between our bathhouse and the yurt. You need to build Catherine a proper house. So we did… we put up another smaller yurt for our bedroom. I’ve lived in “proper” houses all my life; and I just wanted a smaller
            “Leave as little a trace” experience. Like Krum said… I’m just passing through!

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            1. exquisite, utejack. i imagine your carbon footprint is scantier than a dung beetle’s. how far from your 2 yurts is the fountainhead or wellspring?

              the source of my back pain is not a dislocated or damaged disc; it’s from sitting too long at this bloody computer everyday, which was never the case pre-covid lockdowns [ongoing for 2 years now]. however, we have just been informed of president duterte’s promulgation that, tho’ masks and face-shields must still be donned, international tourism will no longer be proscribed as of 16 feb, and that most of the 7000+ philippine islands will now be manumitted to welcome both domestic and international travellers w/out being quarantined for 2 weeks in a govt-appointed hotel [the rates of which are usurious]. as a marine biologist [retired] who has not been able to budge off mindoro island for over 2 years, this is the best news i’ve had since the last time i was ‘kissed by kismet’, when the MD who delivered bairn #7 when i was 48, announced that our final ‘issue’ was “perfect”. whew!

              predictably, i’m way off topic here, but thanx for the chatyap. time to straighten my bent back.

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              1. The wellspring is about 4 acres down the path. It’s on the same elevation as the bathhouse, so gravity is not in our favor. But I’m looking into putting in a tank/ pump, and waterlines in the “spring”…when warmer days say come outside and play! But water from a spring is a gift to be sure. Miss Water in her most optimal form and so well structured by Mother Earth’s Schumann resonance,(7.8hz) that she’s truly life giving.
                We’ve been structuring our water for years now using various methods, as outlined by visionaries like Ling, Pollack, Emoto, and the Dancing With Water ladies M.J. Pangman is such a wonderful teacher. Go to her sight and see what a gift you’ve been given having such a natural gravity fed source. Do a search on Pollack and Ling and check out their research on what they call waters 4th phase. It’s a powerful bit of understanding and being a marine oriented educator and lover; it will warm your heart.
                Here’s my email… please stay in touch…
                utejack@icloud.com

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              2. as soon as i unbend my back for another walkabout, i will ‘dive into’ that watery realm of potentially lucubrating insights. tnx for your email address, utejack; i will add it to my limited [in-extremis] contact list.

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          2. Gematria involves the language of mathematics; numbers have a very cool voice and their sacred speak lies everywhere throughout the known universe. Right up any linguist’s alley.

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  19. the quintessential q., at least for me, is who are ‘they’. why do we not have access to those we identify as ‘they’? ave ‘they’ always slunked around among us, or are ‘they’ as clueless about the consequences of their manipulations and misdeeds as we are, as well as many others who do not crave power over every life form on the planet?

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    1. The Last Real Commander-in-Chief General-President Eisenhower Warned why it will be ‘So Hard to Give Peace A Chance in America’ in his 1961 speech delivered at the end of his 8 year Presidency.

      This conjunction of an immense military establishment and a large arms industry is new in the American experience. The total influence — economic, political, even spiritual — is felt in every city, every State house, every office of the Federal government. We recognize the imperative need for this development.
      Yet we must not fail to comprehend its grave implications.
      Our toil, resources and livelihood are all involved; so is the VERY STRUCTURE OF OUR SOCIETY.

      That’s it! It’s a real big challenge for everybody to fundamentally re-structure Society Peacefully!
      It’s obvious we’re going in the opposite direction.

      Watching Trump from CanaDa in his 2016 campaign, I thought he was encouraging Nihilism and January 6 was 1 more leading indicator he did that, bringing American Carnage to American streets he introduced in his 1st Presidential speech.
      That’s what we’re seeing unfolding Today in the UN-United States, and I have yet to see signs of a change on the Path to Destruction.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. “We recognize the imperative need for this development.”

        I’d never paid attention to this line before. Even in the midst of his cautionary speech, Ike was saying that the U.S. had to be on a war footing, essentially. Thereafter, the anti-peace mindset was written in stone.

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  20. I just saw the Senator on CNN on another matter than on what I wrote about.

    I have to admit, with all the creative minds I’ve recognized participating on this site on a regular basis, not one had any choice words to refute the 2nd paragraph in the Senator’s reply re Russia.
    I’ve already revealed here how I’ll reply on the Russia is not my friend part and the Skirpal poisoning part.

    With or without any suggestions, I will reply Tomorrow. Hopefully, the Words will come out like a 2 edged sword.

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        1. As Christopher Hitchens said Ray….. “I don’t want to hear about your religion. Keep it to yourself. By all means, employ the mush solution, because it’s all mush to begin with.”

          Liked by 1 person

          1. excelsior, dennis. i applaud your unapologetic and fearless honesty. you and hitch would have made a dynamite team… tho’ i doubt you could have maintained pari-passu w/ his ethanol imbibitions!

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          2. And Jeanie, if I didn’t have sufficient proofs of the Christ Spirit I know, which you and Dennis don’t know, I wouldn’t have kept the Faith these 47 years with so much opposition not only you and Dennis display.
            I’ve gotten much worse from the 10,000 comments I’ve made in The Washington Post the last 5 years. Sometimes my comments are so exact without even mentioning God or religion, the whole thread my comment started is deleted.

            I will confess, what I experienced that February 1, 1975 was as powerful to me as I imagine Saul/Paul experienced on the Road to Damascus to arrest and bring back to Jerusalem the adherents of the new Jewish Sect calling themselves Christians.

            It was so powerful, I was believing the kingdom of heaven would be revealed to the whole World within 3 years.
            When that didn’t happen, my mind had to be renewed. I had to discard my rose tinted glasses and my wishful thinking. I had to stop telling God what I think should be done, and start listening, looking more closely at the hard core Realities.

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            1. the “hard-core reality” ray, is that despite your dramatic, epiphanic conversion, nothing has changed. en effet, your god’s planet has deteriorated further since 1975, and the deleterious agents of that deterioration have become even more puissant, more esurient, more regnant, and more dangerous to the health of this planet for every life form and every habitat that has previously fed and domiciled us. your putatively omnipotent god is a dangerous, subreptitious, mercurial, and capricious god. i am, however, gratified that he has inspired you and given your life meaning.

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              1. What’s most important Jeanie, is I have changed for the better compared to my life BC.

                As for the deteriorating state of God’s earth, blame that on humans, not God, as the Day of Reckoning draws near.

                And the nations were angry, and your wrath is come, and the time of the dead, that they should be judged, and that you should give reward to your servants the prophets, and to the saints, and them that fear your name, small and great; and should destroy them which destroy the earth.

                It’s taken some 2000 years to see it unfold in our Generations since the prophecy was penned.
                The main purpose of this Blog is to alert to the dangers of the Nations being angry and the Wrath going with it.

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      1. As for that religious “born again,” thing, I once came home from Sunday school at the local Baptist church and asked my widowed working-class mother (a non-church-going Lutheran): “Mom, am I born again?” To which she replied: “No, son. I gave birth to you properly the first time. And I would rather have a root canal without anesthetic as to ever go through such agony again.”

        Liked by 2 people

        1. Speaking of Peace and women giving birth properly the first time (requiring no second-attempt repair jobs later), in four more days I will mark the twentieth year since my Mom passed away. Rest in Peace, Mom. Some of the many things you taught me, I still recall and try to make part of my daily life. And occasionally, like when those rhymes you once read to me start circulating through my agitated brain, something like the following happens:

          Of Cabbages and Kings
          To my beloved mother: June Arline Reveal – Murry – Frick
          April 22, 1929 to February 4, 2002

          From days before I knew or cared
          How life could bite; which fangs it bared;
          You showed me how each day you dared
          To face the awful things.
          You read me verses from a book
          Whose name I didn’t know but took
          To have a strange enchanting hook
          That catches pigs with wings.

          And boiling seas you told me of
          While reading with a touch of love
          A tale absurd and far above
          What I could understand.
          No matter, as the days sped by
          I learned by ear and not the eye
          What made some laugh and others cry:
          Some rhythmic words well planned.

          So soon I first began to speak
          Then later learned to talk a streak
          As you dealt with things hard and bleak
          Through summers, falls, and springs.
          And winters, too, they came and went;
          The seasons passed, my youth I spent,
          But learning never made a dent
          In songs the lobster sings.

          About the panther and the owl:
          The last ate dish, the first ate fowl,
          Or so you read, without a scowl,
          And I absorbed the story.
          Though incomplete, my memory
          Retains some clues, a history
          Of Humpty Dumpty’s mastery,
          And what he meant by “glory.”

          The verses spoke of what we shared,
          The ties that lasted, unimpaired,
          Through arguments and anger aired:
          Those sorrows that life brings.
          And later on through still more school
          We spoke of both the sage and fool
          Who bear outrageous fortune’s rule,
          Its arrows and its slings.

          Now twenty years beyond my ken
          You’ve passed, but I recall that when
          You’d pick a topic, Arks to Zen,
          We’d share some thoughts about it.
          We sat up drinking coffee late
          Discussing gods, or fickle fate,
          And how the bent could change to straight,
          With not a cause to doubt it.

          So when the government announced
          Its latest war, then on me pounced,
          And I my country’s faith renounced
          You said, to my advantage:
          “I hold my grudges, yes, it’s true,
          As women will, but unlike you,
          I limit mine to decades few
          Or less, if I can manage.”

          Too soon, one day, your health declined
          Your mind, once focused and aligned,
          Unravelled quickly, checks you’d signed
          Lay unmailed on the table.
          The doctors knew no thing for sure
          Except that no one had a cure
          For that which all life must endure:
          Its own end in the fable.

          The Hospice lady, she’d inspect
          Your wrinkled body, worn and wrecked
          By cares and woes and loves unchecked
          By age so unforgiving.
          And then she came that awful day
          To verify you’d gone away
          When no breath passed your lips turned grey,
          And no pulse signaled living.

          Oh, please come back, I think at times,
          While counting meters, forming rhymes.
          Forgive me for those thoughtless crimes
          That living lonely brings.
          No news have I that one should flout,
          And few achievements I can tout;
          But how I miss our talks about
          The cabbages and kings.

          Michael Murry, “The Misfortune Teller,” Copyright © 2018-2022

          Liked by 1 person

          1. Your Mother raised you well, Michael, preparing you to deal with the uncertainties of Life, while infusing you with the creative writing talent you consistently display. :–)

            I have to share this on my Facebook page with your ‘born again’ comment your Mother made so long ago.

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        2. that is a keeper, michael; i’m passing your clever mum’s witty exhortation on to those i know can use the chortle.

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        3. When anyone comes alive to the Spirit of Christ living within the Human Body, Church is 24/7.
          It’s like if Armageddon/WWIII comes, no one will have to go to it, it will unfold all around us.

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  21. elemental, michael, and profoundly moving. your mother must have been a remarkable woman. you were fortunate to have her w/ you for the duration of time you both fortuitously shared w/ each other.

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  22. “Great googly-moogly!” as Howlin’ Wolf used to say.
    In this thread, we’ve ruled out taking to the streets to get your point across as having too many negative consequences for the protesters (dismissing the successes and sacrifices of the Civil Rights movement and Anti-War protests of the 60’s).
    We’ve done that even though we know, despite the assurances of Nancy Pelosi and her ilk, how you vote and who you vote for carries no guarantee your preferred candidate (should they win) will feel any obligation to act on campaign promises or stay true to their oath of office (that’s from the White House on down).
    We’ve also (mostly) recognized that appeals through prayer to the deity of your choice – essentially telling them they’ve made a mistake – don’t work. A god either has “a plan” – as we are regularly assured – or they don’t. If they do, the current plan stinks. If they don’t, then what’s the point of them?
    To be against endless wars, “regime changes,” and Pentagon budgets beyond human comprehension is to be anti-American.
    Our Constitutionally-guaranteed rights are guaranteed up until the moment someone says, “Not any more.” From the Supreme Court on down, the fix is in. And police forces across the country have increasingly become heavily-armed, paramilitary, politically-motivated organizations to see the dictates of “the fix” are carried out.
    Freedom is never free and comes at a high price. Sacrifices may be required. Protest definitely is.
    (Lest we forget, the United States was founded out of protests against their legal sovereign and Parliament. If the Declaration of Independence doesn’t strike you as the most eloquent manifesto ever written – and a death warrant for all who signed it – then I respectfully suggest you read it again.)
    You can always say “it’s not as bad as this or that country” (and we always have). “Love it or leave it.”
    There are many visions of what America should be out there, but not one of them is of an all-inclusive paradise, and that’s from Black Lives Matter down to the hyper-paranoid “patriot” who sees him or herself as the only true American left standing.
    If you believe actively protesting what’s become of the country is too risky, then find a way to educate others. Dennis Merwood has (I think accurately) pointed out in this thread that the regular readers of Bracing Views are probably an older crowd, in which case we’ve seen a lot and learned a lot. Maybe the best form of protest is to pass along that knowledge, one mind at a time, before it is completely forgotten or erased from history.

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    1. your profundity. butsudanbill, is stunning, impassioned, and thought-provoking. i too, at 80, have endured enervating decades battling for human, animal, and habitat rights, and am gratified to witness the startling progress that has been achieved among many in the youth-to-middle-aged generations. denise alerted me to rivera sun’s DANDELION SALAD blog, wherein she inventories multiple examples of that progress. it amplifies optimism of the non-pollyanna variety:

      https://dandelionsalad.wordpress.com/2022/01/30/how-nonviolent-action-is-protecting-the-earth-by-rivera-sun/

      you might find her articles worthy of a coup d’oeil.

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    2. “Great googly-moogly!” Oh Yaaa!
      Grady was a fan of Howling Wolf and cribbed this catch phrase for many a performance on a show where the
      Crimson Foxx starred.
      Maybe we can crib some tactics from the “Occupy Ottawa” bravado?

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  23. A great post by a commenter on anti-war.com today…….

    “Washington should adjust its foreign policy to reflect the interests of the American people.”

    “Need I say it? “That ain’t gonna happen.”

    First, the American people may have objective interests – but most of them don’t know what they are. Foreign policy is ignored by almost every American who isn’t directly involved.

    Second, the American people don’t even have a clue how to run their own country, let alone opine about foreign policy. They don’t even know the degree to which their own country is corrupt and ruled by oligarchs, while being fed a pack of stories about other countries’ oligarchs.

    Third, the American people have even less clue about how to reform their government, even if it was possible, which, frankly, it isn’t short of a violent revolution, a military defeat, or a total economic collapse. And even in those events, the historical probability is that the population would choose to make things worse, due to philosophical and historical ignorance and stupidity.

    So again, “that ain’t gonna happen.”

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Agree completely with every point, except the one about Americans’ not knowing the degree to which the government is corrupt. I think the vast majority, no matter what their political stance may be, have the sense that their government has sold out and is working against them. They may not know the details (e.g., Kyrsten Sinema is in the pocket of Big Pharma), but they know somethin’ ain’t right.

      Liked by 1 person

    2. geewhizzies, we americans sound more anti-american than all those ‘shiver-in-me-timbers’ phantom enemies and other such ‘godless’ people! eternal shame and damnation on us, eh, dennis?

      Liked by 1 person

    3. I would avoid gross and insulting generalizations about “the American people.” Not because I’m an American but because I’m a historian. Lumping people and dismissing them as ignorant and stupid and clueless strikes me as lazy and dangerous.

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      1. …but the ignorance quotient IS astonishingly, frighteningly high in this country. Ditto the uneducated and apathetic numbers. All three categories due to a combination of rampant consumerism, “me first-ism,” and abysmally poor education systems.

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        1. I don’t know. I think we should be careful here. Ignorant of what? Uneducated compared to whom? Apathetic about what and whom, and why? Why don’t we care (allegedly) about others? Or even ourselves?

          It’s one step from this to saying Americans should be put in a basket of deplorables and then dismissed as irredeemable. This so-called analysis didn’t work so well for Hillary …

          Be careful too in calling Americans dumb and ignorant and uncaring — they might just live up to the charges, if only out of spite.

          Liked by 1 person

          1. Ignorant of how our government is supposed to work, what the Constitution says, ignorant about all of history in general, ignorant about anything other than the MSM version of current events (if that), about the scientific method, what climate change really means, and on and on. Uneducated in terms of only having learned the minimum to pass the standard battery of tests. That is, not having been taught critical thinking and analysis skills, or any in-depth history, literature, civics—the subjects that lead to literate, thoughtful, well-rounded people who can do more than text and post on social media. None of my 20-something nieces and nephews knows anything beyond a very narrow range of subject matter related to whatever his or her job is. My friends’ 30-to-40-something children are the same, and the teachers I know corroborate that situation. As for apathy, that applies to most things outside people’s immediate orbits. If it’s not sports, TV-show, work, family, or latest-tech-toy related, there’s not much interest. For proof, see the dismal voter turn-outs, even for Presidential elections. When I was the secretary of our community organization, an attendance of 20 at a meeting was above average. And even then, most people were there to complain about barking dogs, unruly neighbors, and the like. When we officers would set up, say, a beautification or assistance project, guaranteed, we and our spouses would be the only volunteers. And yes, my example here is anecdotal, but I doubt it’s much different in many other communities.

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            1. it’s the laze-factor, den, indolence that seems endemic. nonetheless, the question is, what is the percentage of those indolent, non-voting, non-participatory, hedonistic, insouciant, and benumbed americans? has anyone a clue? have there been any stats published about how americans spend their disposable or discretionary time? are the laze-factor stats increscent or decrescent? one wonders….

              Liked by 1 person

        2. perhaps wja was referring to americans in quondam generations, den, such as those in his father’s generation and his own generation. as well, he was promoting the reasonable and legitimate apothegm that “sweeping generalizations are a falsification of reality”… one that is so oft-repeated that it now seems a blandishment, despite its veracity. [i’m in the inchoate stages of feeling like a comment-monopolist!].

          Liked by 1 person

          1. Agree that it’s a sweeping generalization to say that ALL Americans are ignorant and apathetic. But I don’t think it’s far off the mark to say that the vast run of them are, particularly the under-50 contingent. After all, 74 million of them voted for TFG in 2020, and tens of millions of eligible adults didn’t even bother to vote.

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  24. US troops are back in combat in Syria, joining forces with the Kurdish SDF in serious fighting in and around Hasakeh, where ISIS prison raids have turned into two weeks of fighting with hundreds dead.

    Who gave the US military permission to be in Syria? Isn’t this what they claim the Russians want to do in Ukraine?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. war and its machinery make the world go ’round, dennis… particularly the ‘k-ching! k-ching! k-ching! of banks’ corporate adjutants and govt myrmidons. yipee-doo. soon we will be cavalierly informed that the MIC is doing our besieged planet a favour; it’s the latest tekkie-toy in population control. how altruistic of them!

      Liked by 1 person

  25. Another reminder of why peace isn’t given a chance: the bipartisan push for power and profit in support of the military-industrial complex, most especially profits to be made from weapons sales linked to NATO expansion and war in general

    Where profit is number one, and where militarism is strong, war and weapons sales will naturally follow.

    Liked by 1 person

  26. Under Trump, there was a concerted US effort to get Germany to kill the Nordstream 2 project before it was completed. It’s now complete and ready to open the taps to provide Germany and Western Europe with a steady supply of Energy at a fair price as Russia has done reliably for Decades.

    Even after the 2014 US orchestrated Coup/regime change of the Russian friendly government, putting an anti-Russian government in place, Russia continued to pay Ukraine about $2 BILLION every year in pipeline transit fees.

    If Nordstream 2 goes online, Russia will stop those payments and the US Taxpayer will have to make up the difference. Ukraine knows that, and it’s a consideration when President Zelensky tells the US it’s overreacting with MSM hype mirroring the Official line, and to cool it.

    It’s obvious the US is trying to pressure Putin to react Militarily to the increasingly strident threats of more Economic Sanctions, even preemptive sanctions, which are in effect, Acts of War.
    The objective is to give the US leverage to pressure Germany to have Nordstream 2 killed so Europe buys more expensive US LNG.
    Putin is too smart to fall for that US trap, so the US will continue to howl and flail, exposing itself to the World as the major threat to Peace.

    War is always over money and resources, sold to the People under the false cover it’s over Human Rights!

    I will be replying Today to the only Senator who replied to the Message sent all 100 Senators last week and in November. It is possible the Staff in their Offices didn’t even show it to the Senators?

    Liked by 1 person

  27. This is the 2nd Senator to reply out of 100. I replied to the 1st one Yesterday, and either his Staff didn’t show him the answer, or he completely disregards it according to his comment on the matter in The Washington Post and Twitter Today.

    Dear Mr. Cormier:

    Thank you for contacting me about Ukraine. I appreciate hearing from you on this important issue.

    As you may know, Ukraine became an independent nation when the Soviet Union collapsed in 1991. Since then, Russian President Vladimir Putin has sought to expand Russian territory and influence in Eastern Europe. In 2014, Putin illegally invaded and annexed Crimea, a region of Ukraine. More recently, Russia has amassed over 100,000 troops on the Ukrainian border as it threatens a violent takeover of the nation.

    A full-scale Russian invasion of Ukraine would be a mass-casualty event and represent the largest ground combat operation in the region since World War II. It would also signify a stunning failure of American leadership around the world. President Trump wisely sent military arms and other supplies to Ukraine to ward off Russian aggression. Unfortunately, this administration has shown total capitulation to Putin at every turn, including removing sanctions on Russia’s Nord Stream 2 pipeline which will give Putin enormous leverage over Europe’s energy supply. Moreover, President Biden has made no effort to unite our European allies against a Russian attack and seemingly implied that a “minor incursion” in Ukraine would have little to no repercussions. Weakness invites the wolves, and if Ukraine falls to Russia, I fear that sends the signal to China to invade Taiwan. I do not support going to war with Russia, but leaving the Ukrainians out to slaughter would send a chilling message to our allies and embolden our enemies.

    Again, thank you for taking the time to contact me. Please do not hesitate to contact me in the future about other issues that are important to you and your family.

    Sincerely,

    John Kennedy
    United States Senator

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