History They Don’t Want You To Know

Humanity Is Riding Delusion To Extinction

“I’m rooting for humanity, no doubt, but my own limited life experience has made me unlikely to bet on our species.” By Danny Sjursen Truthdig (12/3/19) Horses sporting gas masks. That, of all things, has been on my mind lately. Bear with me, now. Gaze at the ever-so-cockamamie photo. A horse, wearing a gas mask. Nothing so illustrates the rank absurdity and irrationality of the human condition. It was during World War I—which killed an unheard-of nine million soldiers in just four years—that the armies of Europe still employed horses in an age of machine guns, airplanes (eventually), tanks and poison gas attacks….

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Democracy Incorporated & Inverted Totalitarianism

“The political role of corporate power, the corruption of the political and representative processes by the lobbying industry, the expansion of executive power at the expense of constitutional limitations, and the degradation of political dialogue promoted by the media are the basics of the system, not excrescences upon it. The system would remain in place even if the Democratic Party attained a majority; and should that circumstance arise, the system will set tight limits to unwelcome changes, as is foreshadowed in the timidity of current Democratic proposals for reform. In the last analysis the much-lauded stability and conservatism of the…


Historian Timothy Snyder: Here’s How We Escape TrumpWorld, Where There’s “no future and no truth”

By Chauncey Devega Salon (11/23/19) There will come a time when Donald Trump is no longer president of the United States. The Democrats may defeat Trump in 2020, sending him back to one of his resort hotels to brood and plot further chaos. Trump could be impeached, convicted and forced from office, unlikely as that seems at this moment. A serious medical illness may mean that he is unable to fulfill his duties and is forced to resign. Because of his many scandals and likely illegal behavior, Trump could also choose to resign — if given assurances that Mike Pence, as the new…


Intercepted Podcast — Ghosts Of Mossadegh: The Iran Cables, U.S. Empire & The Arc Of Mideast History

  By Jeremy Scahill Intercepted (11/20/19) AS U.S. SANCTIONS strangle Iran’s economy, anti-government protests are spreading. This week on Intercepted: Iranian-American author and analyst Hooman Majd discusses a century of history marked by intervention and threats from major world powers. Beginning with Britain, Russia, and Germany battling for control of Iran’s oil, Majd and Jeremy Scahill discuss the CIA coup against Mohammed Mossadegh in 1953, the Islamic revolution, and the seizure of the U.S. embassy in Tehran in 1979 and how Washington has repeatedly tried to bring down the government of the Islamic Republic. The Intercept’s investigative series The Iran Cables…


‘The Empire Files’ — Chris Hedges & Abby Martin: No Way Out Of Fascism Through Elections

“These people will kill us. And they will, in the end, carry out crimes of humanity that make what the Nazis and Stalinists did look like like child’s play. They are now pushing us toward the complete extinction of the human species.” [Editor’s Note: This is one of the best summaries of the bipartisan crisis and anomie super-charging the death cult of our corporate-serving society. A tough but necessary message for us all. — Mark L. Taylor] The Empire Files (11/27/9) Abby Martin sits down with Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and author Chris Hedges to discuss the ignored reality behind Trump,…


Intercepted Podcast: CIA Whistleblower Jeffrey Sterling’s Life As An “Unwanted Spy”

  By Jeremy Scahill Intercepted (11/27/19) HOUSE DEMOCRATS ARE pushing forward with their investigation into President Donald Trump’s abuse of power, sparked by an internal whistleblower complaint. This week on Intercepted: Jeffrey Sterling was indicted in 2010 on charges under the Espionage Act for allegedly leaking sensitive national security information to then-New York Times reporter James Risen. Sterling discusses his time as a CIA case officer and how his internal complaint about Operation Merlin, a half-baked CIA scheme that had tried to disrupt Iran’s nuclear weapons development, led to his firing. Sterling explains the discrimination suit he filed against the CIA and how there…


Sheldon Wolin & Inverted Totalitarianism: Don’t Call It Democracy. Putting Understanding To What America Has Become

A corporate war state cannot be a democratic state. By Chris Hedges TruthDig (11/2/15) Sheldon Wolin, our most important contemporary political theorist, died Oct. 21 [2015] at the age of 93. In his books “Democracy Incorporated: Managed Democracy and the Specter of Inverted Totalitarianism” and “Politics and Vision,” a massive survey of Western political thought that his former student Cornel West calls “magisterial,” Wolin lays bare the realities of our bankrupt democracy, the causes behind the decline of American empire and the rise of a new and terrifying configuration of corporate power he calls “inverted totalitarianism.” Wendy Brown, a political…


Chris Hedges: The Enemy Within Is Deep Indeed

The deep state, incapable of reform and determined to retain its grip on power, will morph under the threat of popular unrest into a corporatized fascism. By Chris Hedges TruthDig (11/4/19) Our democracy is not in peril—we do not live in a democracy. The image of our democracy is in peril. The deep state—the generals, bankers, corporatists, lobbyists, intelligence chiefs, government bureaucrats and technocrats—is intent on salvaging the brand. It is hard to trumpet yourself as the world’s guardian of freedom and liberty with Donald Trump blathering on incoherently about himself, inciting racist violence, insulting our traditional allies along with…


Cornel West On Hope & Resistance In The Age Of Trump: We must “find joy in the struggle”

What would Malcolm say? What would Martin say? What would Fannie Lou Hamer say? What would Ida B. Wells say? What would Toni Morrison say? All of these warriors who have passed away, we have to be true to them. By Chauncey Devega Salon (11/3/19) Donald Trump’s presidency is a stress test for American democracy, the rule of law and the U.S. Constitution. The enduring strength of American democracy has long been prefaced on the assumption that the country’s leaders — especially the president — had some basic respect for democracy. Moreover, the president was assumed by both elites and the…


Pardon Me, Please, Mr. President

Reveal / the Center For Investigative Journalism (11/2/19) As the House of Representatives continues its impeachment inquiry of President Donald Trump, we go back in time to the Nixon administration, when the threat of impeachment and a presidential pardon changed the course of history. We then examine the pardons system and learn why it has stopped functioning as originally intended. We begin our show by finding parallels between Trump and former President Richard Nixon. Special counsel Robert Mueller’s report on Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. presidential election documents instances in which pardons were offered to members of Trump’s administration…


Thom Hartmann & Chris Hedges Talk About The Collapse Of American Liberalism

  [Editor’s Note: This interview is was done nine years ago but is a timely as today’s news. In fact, it helps to explain how we wound up with much of today’s news! — Mark L. Taylor] The Big Picture / RT (12/20/10) In this week’s conversations with Great Minds Thom Hartmann talks with Chris Hedges, journalist and author of “The Death of the Liberal Class”. Chris Hedges says, “The lunatic fringe of the Republican Party, which looks set to make sweeping gains in the midterm elections, is the direct result of a collapse of liberalism. It is the product…


Former NYC Medical Examiner Says Evidence In Jeffrey Epstein Death Indicates Homicide — Not Suicide

  [Editor’s Note: Note how this story has disappeared from the mainstream media. Jeffrey Epstein had a list — a bipartisan list — of powerful friends. You will only find stories about the Epstein sex scandal in the alternative media. It is an important story we need to keep track of. — Mark L. Taylor] By David Badash The New Civil Rights Movement (10/30/19) A former New York City medical examiner and forensic pathologist says the evidence in the Jeffrey Epstein case points not to suicide – as has been officially declared – but homicide. Epstein, a convicted sex offender, was awaiting…


Filmmaker David Lynch’s Chillingly Prescient Vision Of Modern America

When they were first released, Lynch’s films may well have appeared as funhouse mirror reflections of society. Not so anymore. By Billy J. Stratton The Conversation (10/25/19) “There’s a sort of evil out there,” says Sheriff Truman in an episode of David Lynch’s iconic TV series, “Twin Peaks.” That line gets to the heart of Lynch’s work, which reflects the dark, ominous, often bizarre underbelly of American culture – one increasingly out of the shadows today. As someone who teaches film noir, I often think about the ways American cinema serves as a mirror to society. David Lynch is a master…


What True Leadership Looks Like: ‘Walking With The Wind’ By Rep. John Lewis

“I had problems with the church. On the one hand, I was absolutely committed to my faith , to the Lord, to the stories and lessons I read in the Bible — beautiful stories and deep, deep lessons. On the other hand, I was torn and confused, full of questions about why so many people treated one another so cruelly sometimes, often in the name of the same Bible I was reading. That kind f question didn’t curb my desire to become a minister. In fact, it increased it. Seeing what the Reverend King was doing showed me there were…


Pity The Kurds (And Curse Our Callous, Cowardly Betrayal)

They were cannon fodder for the United States. By Chris Hedges TruthDig (10/21/19) I stood on the wind-swept Kalowa Hill in the northern Iraqi city of Sulaimaniya as Pershan Hassan, a stocky 53-year-old woman, clambered quickly up the dirt track leading to where a mass grave was being excavated. She clutched a framed black-and-white picture of a boy. She pushed her way through the crowd that was looking down at the unearthed remains of dozens of bodies. Suddenly, she let out a gasp of pain and recognition as she saw the skeletal remains of her 13-year-old son, Shafiq. A faded…


New York Area Fire Commissioners Make History With Call For New 9/11 Investigation

“We were the first fire district to pass this resolution. We won’t be the last.” [Editor’s Note: This group has done amazing work in the effort for truth about the 9/11 attacks. The A&E for 9/11 Truth web site is a good resource. Given the world changing and ongoing impacts, we deserve to know the truth of what happened on that day. The issue does not get the coverage it deserves. — Mark L. Taylor] By Ted Walter Architects & Engineers for 9/11 Truth (7/27/19) They started off by saying the Pledge of Allegiance. Ten minutes later, they were reading…


The Story Behind ‘Catch 22’ Was About Far More Than The Insanity Of War

  Outlook /BBC (6/25/19) Joseph Heller’s funny, tragic satirical anti-war novel was published in 1961 and sold millions. For many it epitomised the growing anti-establishment mood of the 1960s. Heller had served in a bomber squadron during World War Two. Though his experiences provide the setting for the book, its target was actually the America of the 1950s. Using interviews with the author from the BBC archive, Alex Last tells the story behind Catch-22. Link to 9-Minute Audio ***** Kurt Vonnegut’s ‘Slaughterhouse-Five’ At 50 Morning Edition Saturday / NPR (7/6/19) Fifty years ago Kurt Vonnegut published his anti-war novel Slaughterhouse-Five. NPR’s…


Precious Slackers: Hunter Biden Is A Reminder Of The Deep Moral Rot Of BOTH Political Parties

When you are the son of a famous and powerful politician, you are showered with opportunity, whether you deserve it or not. This is nepotism, but it is also, if we are being direct, a form of corruption. Moral corruption.  By Hamilton Nolan The Guardian (10/11/10) One of the peculiar stupidities of the American political mind is its resolute refusal to hold two separate ideas at once. Our dominant political narrative is like a Choose-Your-Own-Adventure book for morons, offering only a conservative red storyline or a liberal blue storyline, with nothing in between or outside those primary color bounds. Politicians themselves, out…


The “Joker” Is A Film About The America That Inflicted Us With Trump

  Go see this film. Take your teens. Take your resolve. By Michael Moore Michael Moore’s Facebook Page (10/6/19) On Wednesday night I attended the New York Film Festival and witnessed a cinematic masterpiece, the film that last month won the top prize as the Best Film of the Venice International Film Festival. It’s called “Joker” — and all we Americans have heard about this movie is that we should fear it and stay away from it. We’ve been told it’s violent and sick and morally corrupt — an incitement and celebration of murder. We’ve been told that police will…


This Animated Graphic Tells The Tale Of Why America Is Falling Apart

“The question of our time is this: will we tolerate it? Or will we take back our democracy from the oligarchs who run this country?” By Julia Conley Common Dreams (10/7/19) For the first time in U.S. history, the 400 wealthiest Americans paid less in taxes last year than people in any other income group, thanks to decades of tax cuts and loopholes benefiting the rich. A year after the Republican tax plan—often called the #GOPTaxScam by critics—was passed into law, the richest people in the country were subject to a 23 percent rate in local, state, and federal taxes….



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Who Really Owns & Runs The Country: Documentary On The Plot To Overthrow FDR Documentary Is A Warning For Today

  By Mark L. Taylor The Commoner Call (10/3/19) Commoner Call reader Gary Ebben forwarded this History Channel documentary on the 1933 fascist ‘Wall Street Putsch’ to overthrow President Franklin D. Roosevelt to stymie his attempts at the reform necessary to rescue the nation from the Great Depression and to weave a few strands of decency into the national government and economy. To channel the anger of the veterans Bonus Marchers and to have some popular credibility, a cadre of fascsit-loving mega-wealthy Wall Street plotters approached retired Major General Smedley Butler — of “War Is A Racket” fame — to…


‘Seducing And Killing Nazis’ Challenges Us To Actively Resist, Not Meekly Adapt To, Fascism

  In the midst of all of this they tried to remain human under inhuman circumstances. By Chauncey K. Robinson Peoples World (8/28/19) The book Seducing and Killing Nazis is essential reading because there’s nothing “normal” about Nazis. From past to present, they are a group of people who support the genocide of others based on hate and the idea of “white pride.” There’s nothing “normal” about fascist regimes; they stamp out democracy and encourage suppression. Yet, in these times, allies and representatives of these ideas are being glamorized on pop culture reality shows like Dancing with the Stars, or given sympathetic profile…


Pathocracy: The Pathological Power Of Governments Led By Narcissists & Psychopaths

The danger of democracy transitioning into pathocracy is always real. It is always closer to us than we think, and once it has a foothold, will crush every obstacle in its way. By Steve Taylor The Conversation (9/19/19) After spending his early life suffering under the Nazis and then Stalin, the Polish psychologist Andrew Lobaczewski devoted his career to studying the relationship between psychological disorders and politics. He wanted to understand why psychopaths and narcissists are so strongly attracted to power as well as the processes by which they take over governments and countries. He eventually came up with the term “pathocracy”…


Before The Hobnail Boot Of Tyranny Falls, There Are Warnings

By Mark L. Taylor The Commoner Call (9/23/19) Oftentimes big stories are revealed in small footnotes. The Miami Herald recently reported (9/19)that a Marine Corps unit was looking to hold its celebration of the annual Marine Corps Ball at Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort. “At a time when taxpayer and foreign-government spending at Trump Organization properties is fueling political battles, a U.S. Marine Corps reserve unit stationed in South Florida hopes to hold an annual ball at a venue that could profit the commander-in-chief,” the Miami Herald reported Thursday. The news comes after recent reports of  Trump’s struggling Turnberry golf resort in Scotland benefiting from diverted…


They Make It All Possible: The Protectors Our Corrupt Economic Overlords

“In a highly developed society, the Establishment cannot survive without the obedience and loyalty of millions of people who are given small rewards to keep the system going: the soldiers and police, teachers and ministers, administrators and social workers, technicians and production workers, doctors, lawyers, nurses, transport and communications workers, garbage men and firemen. These people –the employed, the somewhat privileged — are drawn into alliance with the elite. They become the guards of the system, buffers between the upper and lower classes. If they stop obeying, the system falls.” -Howard Zinn


How Our Government Came To Be So Crippled By Corruption

    “As America’s political dysfunction has grown worse, the economic stagnation of the middle class has deepened. this is not a result of blind economic forces, Adam Smith’s invisible hand, globalization,or some nebulous cause. Specific committees of congress, inevitably assisted by specific K Street lobbyists, wrote legislation that achieved this result.” — Mike Lofgren, “The Party Is Over: How Republicans Went CRAZY, Democrats Became USELESS, And the Middle Class Got SHAFTED”, 2012 (p.1)


From Govt. Psy-Ops To National Public Radio: New CEO John Lansing’s Glass House

By Laura Flanders Common Dreams (9/15/19) I don’t know about you, but I take a teeny weeny bit of offense when a guy in a glass house lobs a great big stone and expects me not to notice the sound of shattering. Which brings me to National Public Radio. When the ubiquitous news and public affairs network announced the appointment of a new CEO, it noted that John Lansing made his mark in his current job with “stirring defenses of journalism, free from government interference.” This had me picking through the shards when they went on to explain that Lansing comes to…


Chris Hedges: New Book Shines Light On Our Real & Invisible Government

All countries need good intelligence officials and agents, not the buffoons, gangsters, sadists and killers who, in the name of national security, do us so much damage. By Chris Hedges TruthDig (9/16/19) There are two forms of government in the United States. There is the visible government—the White House, Congress, the courts, state legislatures and governorships—and the invisible government, or deep state, where anonymous technocrats, intelligence operatives, generals, bankers, corporations and lobbyists manage foreign and domestic policy regardless of which political party holds a majority. The most powerful and important organs in the invisible government are the nation’s bloated and…


Holdouts Vow To Challenge Purdue Pharma Settlement That Protects Multi-Billionaire Sackler Family Fortune

  “Purdue has had all of its money sucked from it by the Sacklers, so the money is with the Sacklers. This proposal is … not going to require the Sacklers to pay back any profits they took out from Purdue from the sales of OxyContin over the last 10 years.” — Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healy (D). By Nathaniel Weixel The Hill (9/17/19) Purdue Pharma’s bankruptcy filing, the centerpiece of a settlement intended to shield the company and its owners from more than 2,500 lawsuits by cities and states over its role in the opioid crisis, is already facing…


How The FBI Ratcheted Up It’s Power After 9/11 And Helped Install Trump In Office

  “I believe the FBI contributed to this breakdown of public trust in government institutions, not just by who it chose to target for disruption but, just as important, who it didn’t.” By Ryan Devereaux The Intercept (9/14/19) MIKE GERMAN, A former FBI special agent, had four years on the job when he took an assignment that would change his life forever. It was 1992. A jury in Simi Valley, California, had just acquitted a group of mostly white Los Angeles police officers for the videotaped beating of a black construction worker named Rodney King. Decades of pent-up anger directed at one…


Creator Of Stanford Prison Experiment On ICE & Trump’s Camps: It’s How Nazi Guards Behaved

Philip Zimbardo, whose work explored the psychology of cruelty: America under Trump is a “nightmare situation” By  Chauncey Devega Salon (9/12/19) Thousands of migrant and refugee children have still not been reunited with their families. Many may never be returned to their parents. Children being held in Donald Trump’s concentration camps and other detention centers have been sexually assaulted by staff members. A new lawsuit against the Trump administration alleges that Trump’s ICE and Border Patrol enforcers are abusing teenage girls and young women by denying them proper sanitary products, leaving the girls in bloody clothes and refusing to allow them to properly…


Commemorating An Astonishing Act Of Bravery & Compassion In A Time of Cowardice & Hate

On and after October 1, 1943, thousands of Danish families left their lives behind. A makeshift armada hastily ferried more than 7,000 Jews and their spouses across the water to neutral Sweden.’ (photo: Museum of Danish Resistance) By Harvey Wasserman Reader Supported News (9/14/19) As we flounder in the sea of hate spewing out of the White House and all around it, honoring one of humankind’s greatest acts of compassion might help us heal, and renew our faith that change can still come. It happened October 1, 1943 – 76 years ago this coming month. Jews around the world were…


Chris Hedges ‘On Contact’ — Tyranny Of The Corporate Workplace

By Chris Hedges On Contact / RT (9/14/19) Host Chris Hedges talks to Elizabeth Anderson, professor of philosophy at University of Michigan, about the tyranny of the corporate workplace from non-disclosure agreements to punitive, restrictive work conditions and censorship. Their discussion comes as California lawmakers passed landmark legislation challenging the business model of “gig-economy” companies forcing companies to reclassify certain contract workers as employees. Anderson’s new book ‘Private Government: How Employers Rule Our Lives (and Why We Don’t Talk about It)’, was published by Princeton Press. Link to 28-Minute Video


Shut It Down: Veteran Organizer Lisa Fithian Offers A Guide To Resistance In Era Of Climate Crisis

“Learn Your History.” Democracy Now! (9/6/19) Lisa Fithian is a longtime organizer and nonviolent direct action trainer since the 1970s. She has shut down the CIA. She has occupied Wall Street, disrupted the World Trade Organization and stood her ground in Tahrir Square. She has walked in solidarity with the tribal leaders at Standing Rock and defended communities in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. “It’s an incredibly painful time, but we can’t let that pain de-stablize us.” She joined us at the Democracy Now! studio to talk about her new book, which was published this week, titled “Shut It Down: Stories…


One Of Most Encouraging Articles You Will Read This Week

  How a small active minority can change the world. By David Robson Future Now / BBC (5/14/19) In 1986, millions of Filipinos took to the streets of Manila in peaceful protest and prayer in the People Power movement. The Marcos regime folded on the fourth day. In 2003, the people of Georgia ousted Eduard Shevardnadze through the bloodless Rose Revolution, in which protestors stormed the parliament building holding the flowers in their hands. Earlier this year, the presidents of Sudan and Algeria both announced they would step aside after decades in office, thanks to peaceful campaigns of resistance. In each case,…


Getting Real About What It Will Take

“All of the movements that opened up the democratic space in America—the abolitionists, the suffragists, the labor movement, the communists, the socialists, the anarchists, and the civil rights movement—developed a critical mass and militancy that forced the centers of power to respond. The platitudes about justice, equality, and democracy are just that. Only when ruling elites become worried about survival do they react. Appealing to the better nature of the powerful is useless.”  – Chris Hedges, America: The Farewell Tour ***** Chris Hedges On What it Takes To Be A Rebel In Modern Times VICE News (11/2/15) Bestselling author and…


Joe Biden Lying About His Role In Disastrous Iraq War Is Typical Of American Pols & Shows Why We Have So Many Wars

In Biden’s case, he attempted to take a Sharpie to the entire war and black-out his name. By Jonathan Turley The Hill (9/7/19) Former French President Charles de Gaulle once explained that “since a politician never believes what he says, he is quite surprised to be taken at his word.” This week, no one is more surprised than President Donald Trump and Democratic presidential candidate and former Vice President Joe Biden. Trump succeeded in turning an innocent mistake about the weather into a giant lie and then, after days of determined effort, into a full-fledged scandal. Biden succeeded in denying his own words in…


The Deep State Government Hiding In Plain Sight

[Editor’s Note: Be sure to watch all the way through to the end to catch Bill Moyer’s commentary. — Mark L. Taylor] Moyers & Company (4/15/16) Mike Lofgren, a congressional staff member for 28 years, joins Bill Moyers to talk about what he calls Washington’s “Deep State,” in which elected and unelected figures collude to protect and serve powerful vested interests. “It is how we had deregulation, financialization of the economy, the Wall Street bust, the erosion or our civil liberties and perpetual war,” Lofgren tells Moyers. Link to 27-Minute Video ***** Essay: Anatomy Of The Deep State In terms…


If Workers Take Advantage Of The Moment They Can Turn Things Around To Benefit Labor

Workers are the 99%. We have the votes. This time we need to use them together. By Tom Crofton The Commoner Call (9/2/19) Working people in America are waking up to the fact that they need unions. The most progressive aspects of the workplace have all come from banding together and standing together for worker rights, and as the erosion of those hard-won gains has accelerated, interest in rebuilding the union movement is finally reviving. Besides stagnant wages and dissolving benefits, the most obvious loss is the 40-hour week. Mandatory overtime, and conversely, the less than 35-hour week that avoids…