Dark Ages America: The Final Phase of Empire

 

Dark Ages America: The Final Phase of Empire Morris Berman talked about his book Dark Ages America: The Final Phase of Empire, published by W.W. Norton. In this book Mr. Berman compared current events in America with the fall of the Roman Empire. Mr. Berman argued that the American empire is in decline due to an overextended economy and a self-destructive foreign policy. He responded to questions from members of the audience.

SINCE 2003 HE HAS BEEN A TINGE PROFESSOR AT CATHOLIC UNIVERSITY OF AMERICA IN WASHINGTON, D.C. MR. BERMAN. WELCOME.

>> THANK YOU ALL FOR COMING. THIS IS THE, END ACTUALLY THE LAST OF A MONTH-LONG TOUR THAT BEGAN IN NEW YORK. APRIL 16th. SO I’VE BEEN
TRAVELING AROUND THE COUNTRY. ACTUALLY THESE, BOOKSTORE VISITS ARE, VERY GOOD FOR AUTHORS HUMILITY THINK.

A WEEK AGO FROM TONIGHT I WAS GIVING A TALK IN A BOOKSTORE IN PHILADELPHIA AND THREE PEOPLE SHOWED UP. ONE WHOM FELL ASLEEP DURING THE TALK [LAUGHING] I COULDN’T BLAME REALLY YOU KNOW. BUT THE REALLY, FINE TOUCH WAS I BROUGHT THE FLYER. THEY PREPARED A FLYER FOR MY SHOW AND, THE DESCRIPTION OF ME — DIANE GOT IT RIGHT BUT THE DESCRIPTION I WILL READ LITERALLY.

MORRIS BERMAN IS DEAN OF ACADEMIC AFFAIRS SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA COLLEGE OF ON TOM TRI. IF ANYBODY BUYS THE BOOK I WILL THROW IN A FREE EYE EXAM. WONDERFUL THINGS TO YOU WHEN OUR ON TOUR. I’VE ALWAYS, KIND OF AT A LOSS AS TO, WHAT TO READ FROM, MY WORK BECAUSE IT’S, ALL OF IT IS STRUCTURED IN A VERY NONLINEAR WAY. THE CHAPTERS ARE LIKE SPOKES ON WHEEL. HOPEFULLY EACH SPOKE, IS ENTIRE IN ITSELF. BUT THE TRUTH IT IS AS THE WHEEL WHEEL STARTS TO TURN YOU SEE THE PATTERN AS IT GOES FAST AND FASTER. THAT’S WITH ONE METAPHOR. ANOTHER MIGHT BE TAROT CARDS. YOU GET A LOT OUT OF ONE CARD. WHEN YOU THE WHOLE PATTERN THAT IT REALLY WORKS. AS A RESULT WITH ANY OF MY BOOKS I NEVER KNOW WHAT TO READ FOR PUBLIC AUDIENCE. BASED UPON THE SECTION I MIGHT CHOOSE. YOU COULD, COME AWAY WITH THE IMPRESSION THAT THE BOOK WAS A BIOGRAPHY OF JIMMY CART, A STUDY OF URBAN DESIGN SINCE 1925, AMERICAN-IRAN RELATIONS IN THE POSTWAR PERIOD. WHAT ELSE HAVE I LEFT OUT.

CHANGING VALUE SYSTEMS IN THE COLORADO ANIES IN THE 1790s. YOU GET THE IDEA. HISTORY AS A WAY OF INTEGRATE ITSELF AND, AS A RESULT, IT’S TOWARD THE END THAT ALL OF THESE FIT TOGETHER. I BELIEVE. SO YOU CAN SEE, THE SORT OF STRUCTURAL PATTERN THAT’S LED US TO A KIND OF SITUATION THAT I DESCRIBE IN THIS BOOK. THAT’S WHY I CALLED IT, “DARK AGES AMERICA”. THE ORIGINAL, PROPOSAL FOR THE BOOK, IS THAT OKAY? THE ORIGINAL PROPOSAL FOR THE BOOK WAS WRITTEN IN DECEMBER OF 2001. TWO MONTHS AFTER 9/11. AT THAT TIME, THE TITLE WAS, “COLOSSUS ADRIFT”.

I SAW IT AS A SEQUEL TO “TWILIGHT OF AMERICAN CULTURE”. I HAD NOT PLANNED TO WRITE A SEQUEL. AFTER 9/11 SOMETHING BECAME VERY CLEAR TO ME IN “TWILIGHT OF AMERICAN CULTURE” I MAKE A RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN ROMAN LATE PERIOD AND ON CONTRARY AMERICA. CONTEMPORARY AMERICA. IT WAS DONE INSIDE INTERNAL FACTORS TO ROAM AND THE UNITED STATES. THAT WAS THE COMPARISON. THE ONLY THING IS THIS WAS PUBLISHED 15 MONTHS BEFORE 9/11. ONE THING I DID NOT SEE THE FACTORS I SAW IN COMMON BETWEEN THE UNITED STATES AND ROMAN EMPIRE BATESALLY PULLING THE UNITED STATES APART, I IMAGINE, I PREDICTED THINGS WOULD GET WORSE IN “TWILIGHT OF THE AMERICAN CULTURE” BUT IT’S FROM A POINT OF BENIGN NEGLECT. I THOUGHT WE WOULD PAY NO ATTENTION AND THINGS WOULD GET WORSE OVER WORRIES.

I NEVER IMAGINED A ADMINISTRATION WOULD COME TO POWER TO MAKE IT DELIBERATELY WORSE. THAT I DIDN’T IMAGINE. OTHER THING I DIDN’T SEE EXCEPT IN HINDSIGHT THE MOST OBVIOUSLY POINT OF COMPARISON. THE DECLINE OF ROME AND THE DECLINE OF THE UNITED STATES. ROME WAS INVADED. IT WAS ATTACKED FROM THE OUTSIDE. IT ENTERED INTO A WAR OF ATTRITION AND IT DID NOT SURVIVE. THAT WAS SO CLEAR WHAT WAS HAPPENING TO US NOW. AMONG OTHER THINGS, WE DID ALL THE WRONG THINGS IN RESPONSE TO THAT ATTACK. AND SO, AS A RESULT, I NEVER IMAGINED I WOULD WRITE A SECOND BOOK ON AMERICAN HISTORY AND THERE I WAS, YOU KNOW, DEEP INTO IT BECAUSE, THAT, PARALLEL STRIKES ME AS A VERY IMPORTANT THING. IT’S, IT’S KIND OF INTERESTING, YOU KNOW, WHEN I SAY THAT, WE DID ALL THE WRONG THINGS. WINSTON CHURCHILL ONCE REMARKED AMERICA COULD ALWAYS BE COUNTED ON TO DO THE RIGHT THING AFTER IT EXHAUSTED ALL THE ALTERNATIVES. THERE IS A LOT OF TRUTH TO THAT. WE DIDN’T BOTHER WITH ALTERNATIVES. WE FOUND THE WORST THING WE COULD DO AND DID IT IN SPADES.

THE LIKE THE ROMAN EMPIRES WERE SAYING TO GEORGE BUSH, HERE IS HOW TO RUIN THE COUNTRY. GO AHEAD. THE BOOK IS WAS CALLED, “COLOSSUS ADRIFT” AFTER I WORKED ON IT I DIDN’T REAL WE WEREN’T ADRIFT. WE ENTERED, MEDIEVAL PERIOD. HE ENTERED EARLY DARKAGES. IN THE INTRODUCTION OF THE BOOK I LAY OUT FOUR THINGS I THINK REPRESENT THE MEDIEVAL MEDIEVALLIZATION OF THE UNITED STATES. THE FIRST IS THE TRIUMPH OF RELIGION OVER REASON. THIS CAN BE SCENE IN THE MAJORITY BELIEF IN THE BIBLICAL VERSION OF CREATION. I THINK ONLY SOMETHING LIKE A THIRD OF THE AMERICAN POPULATION TAKES DARWIN SERIOUSLY AND, THE, IF YOU CAN BELIEVE IT, THE 5% BELIEF, 59% OF THE AMERICAN POPULATION ACCORDING TO “TIME” MAGAZINE POLL,

BELIEF IN THE APOCALYPSE AND THE RAPTURE. THE BUSH ADMINISTRATION — WE ALSO HAVE THE BUSH ADMINISTRATION OPPOSITION TO SCIENCE. NATION’S SCIENTISTS ARE UP IN ARMS ABOUT. THE FRANK DECLARED COMMITMENT TO, A, FAITH-BASED, QUOTE, UNQUOTE, FOREIGN POLICY. A COUPLE YEARS AGO, “THE NEW YORK TIMES” REPORTER, RON SUSKIND INTERVIEWED A NUMBER OF BUSH POLICY ADVISE HE WAS TOLD, HE, SUSKIND, WAS LIVING IN THE AL AT THIS-BASED COMMUNITY WHERE SOLUTIONS EMERGE, QUOTE FROM JUDICIOUS STUDY. THIS APPARENTLY WAS A BAD THING. THAT’S WHAT THE ADVISOR WAS SAYING TO SUSKIND. ONE SENIOR ADVISOR TOLD SUSKIND I QUOTE. THAT’S NOT THE WAY WORLD REALLY WORKS. WE’RE AN EMPIRE. WHEN WE REACT WE CREATE A OUR OWN REALITY. AS DR. PHIL SAYS, HOW IS THAT WORKING OUT FOR YOU? JUST LOOK AROUND. SINCE FUNDAMENTALISM AND DEMOCRACY ARE NOT VERY COMPATIBLE WE SHOULD NOT BE SURPRISED OPPOSITION OF MANY AMERICANS TO THE BILL OF RIGHTS, THREE YEARS AGO THE UNIVERSITY OF CONNECTICUT, CONDUCTED A STATE OF THE FIRST AMENDMENT SURVEY AND DISCOVERED THAT, 34% OF THOSE POLLED SAID THE FIRST AMENDMENT GOES TOO FAR. 46% SAID THERE WAS TOO MUCH FREEDOM OF THE PRESS. 28% FELT NEWSPAPERS SHOULD NOT BE ABLE TO PUBLISH ARTICLES WITHOUT THE PRIOR APPROVAL OF THE GOVERNMENT.

THESE PEOPLE APPARENTLY LIKE PARAVDA. 50% FELT THE GOVERNMENT SHOULD HAVE THE RIGHT TO INFRINGE ON THE FREEDOM OF, QUOTE, CERTAIN RELIGIOUS GROUPS. LET ME SAY THEY DID NOT MEAN THE BAHAI. THAT WAS NOT IMPLIED HERE. QUITE HONESTLY I WOULD HAVE TO SAY WE MAY BE ONLY ONE MORE TERRORIST ATTACK FROM A POLICE STATE. IF YOU HAVE NOT CAUGHT UP ON THE RECENT DATA ABOUT THE NSA SPYING ON HUNDREDS OF MILLIONS OF AMERICAN AMERICAN CITIZENS AND COLLECTING A GIGANTIC DATABASE WHICH IS MATCHED IN TERMS WHO CALLS WHO, I MEAN THEY ARE NOT JUST TRACKING TERRORISTS UNLESS THERE ARE 200 MILLION TERRORISTS IN THE UNITED STATES. THERE’S A PURPOSE TO COLLECT ALL THIS. AND, VERY SOPHISTICATED COMPUTER PROGRAMS TO HOOK THINGS UP. ALL THIS IS BEING DONE WITH THE CONSENT OF THE GOVERNMENT. THERE IS NOT, A LOT OF, THERE IS NOT A LOT OF OBJECTION OR ANY, THAT I KNOW OF, OBJECTION ON THE PART OF THE AMERICAN PEOPLE, TO, THIS REVELATION, TO WHAT THE NSA IS DOING.

IN FACT, WHEN, “NEWSWEEK” BROKE THE STORY ON JULY 19th, 2004, THAT THE WHITE HOUSE HAD BEEN TALKING WITH THE DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE FOR SEVERAL MONTHS ON THE FEESABILITY OF CANCELING OR POSTPONING THE PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION IN NOVEMBER, THERE WAS NO REACTION TO THAT AT ALL. I MEAN THE AMERICAN PUBLIC S NO THE UP IN ARMS. DIDN’T SAY ANYTHING. THAT’S OKAY. CANCEL THE ELECTION FOR FIRST TIME IN OUR HISTORY. THERE WAS NO OBJECTION ON THE PART OF THE AMERICAN PEOPLE TO TORTURING, TO SPYING. TO, PHONY WARS. THERE IS NO OBJECTION AT ALL.

THE SECOND ITEM, I GUESS THIS MIGHT GO ALONG THIS, THE BREAKDOWN OF THE EDUCATION AND CRITICAL THINKING IN THE UNITED STATES. AS FAR AS, I MEAN I DO SOME THINGS WITH ANECDOTAL EVIDENCE IN THE BOOK AND I TEND TO KEEP COLLECTING THESE BECAUSE THEY’RE SO, AND FUNNY, YOU KNOW. JAY LENO HAS THIS SEGMENT ON HIS PROGRAM, CALLED JAYWALKING WHERE HE JUST GOES OUT AND TALKS TO PEOPLE ON STREETS OF BURBANK. RECENTLY, COUPLE MONTHS AGO HE HAD A THING CALLED THE JAYWALKING ALL-STARS. WHERE HE INVITED — IT WAS EITHER SMARTEST OR DUMB EVIDENT BACK TO THE SHOW TO ANSWER QUESTIONS. QUESTIONS AND ARRESTS WERE, OF WHAT COUNTRY WAS THAT POLL LIEN THE EMPEROR. THE ANSWER, IDAHO. WHERE WOULD YOU BE IF WERE SPEAKING FARSI? IN A FAR SEA.

WHAT WAS RICHARD NIXON’S NICKNAME? NOBODY KNEW. SO FINELY HE SAID HE WAS CALLED TRICKKY DICK. SILENCE, ONE WOMAN SAID THAT WAS NOT VERY NICE. FOUR YEARS OF COLLEGE THAT WAS LEVEL OF ANALYSIS.

 

SOME OF THE RECENT ONES A COUPLE WEEKSING AGO HE HAD THEM BACK WHAT’S ANOTHER NAME FOR THE WAR BETWEEN THE STATES? ANSWER, WHAT STATES? QUESTION, WHAT WERE THE GAY ’90s. ANSWER WHEN EVERYBODY STARTED COMING OUT. WHAT WAS THE GREAT, WHAT STARTED THE GREAT DEPRESSION? IMMIGRANTS. MY PARENTS CAUSED THE DEPRESSION. HOW MANY PINTS ARE THERE IN A QUART? AREN’T THERE FOUR KAURT QUARTS IN A PINT? AFTER FOUR YEARS OF COLLEGE. JUST, TAKING THE YOUNGER GENERATION, 18 TO 24. THOSE ARE NICE ANECDOTES.

 

LET ME GIVE YOU THE STATS. 87% OF THAT AGE GROUP CAN’T FIND IRAQ OR IRAN ON A WORLD MAP.

THEY CAN GO THERE AND DIE BUT CAN’T IT ON A WORLD MAP.

49% CAN’T FIND NEW YORK STATE ON A MAP OF THE UNITED STATES.

29% CAN’T LOCATE THE PACIFIC OCEAN AND

11% PERCENT CAN’T FIND THE UNITED STATES.

THAT IS REALLY TALENTED IN A CERTAIN. TAKES, REMARKABLE.

I REMEMBER, IT REMINDS ME OF THIS, OP-ED PIECE THAT H.L. MENKEN DID AFTER WARREN HARDING’S INAUGURAL ADDRESS. HE WAS ALSO INTELLECTUALLY CHALLENGED. MENKEN WROTE, IT’S SO BAD A SORT OF GRANDEUR CREEPS INTO IT.

THAT’S HOW I THINK OF THESE THINGS. GENERAL, ADULT POPULATION,

40% DON’T KNOW WHO OUR ENEMY WAS IN WORLD WAR II.

45% BELIEVE THAT SPACE ALIENS HAVE VISITED THE EARTH.

THIS IS ONE OF MY FAVORITES. KIND OF CUTE.

21% SAY THE FIRST AMENDMENT GUARANTEES THE RIGHT TO OWN PETS.

I KIND OF LIKE THAT.

58% DON’T KNOW WHAT THE PATRIOT ACT IS.

25% HAVE NEVER HEARD OF AL QAEDA.

ONLY 31% OF COLLEGE GRADUATES ARE PROFICIENT IN READING PROSE. AND ONLY

4% ARE GRADUATE STUDENTS.

THAT’S QUITE REMARKABLE. AS I SAY IT’S CERTAIN TYPE OF ACHIEVEMENT.

70% OF AMERICAN ADULTS CAN’T NAME THEIR SENATORS OR CONGRESSMAN. MORE THAN HALF DON’T KNOW THE ACTUAL NUMBER OF SENATORS.

63 CAN’T NAME THE THREE BRANCHES OF GOVERNMENT, ET CETERA, ET CETERA.

THE THIRD FACTOR, IN THIS MEDIEVAL PROCESS IS THE RETURN TO TORTURE ON AN OFFICIAL LEVEL.

IN FACT I THINK, THIS IS THE FIRST TIME IN THE MODERN PERIOD THAT TORTURE HAS ACTUALLY BEEN LEGALIZED.

FOR THE FRENCH TORTURE IN ALGERIA BUT THEY DIDN’T WRITE IT INTO LAW. THEY WERE KIND OF ASHAMED OF IT.

BUT, WE’VE ACTUALLY WRITTEN IT INTO LAW. WE’VE REWRITTEN THE LAW SO TORTURE IS LEGAL. PERSON WHO DID THAT, ALBERTO GONZALES IN ORWELLIAN FASHION MADE HEAD OF THE DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE, OKAY.

REMEMBER IN 1984 THE MINISTRY OF FREEDOM? IT WASN’T ABOUT FREEDOM. OREWELL’S COMMENT WHEN FASCISM COMES TO THE, WELL THE WEST IT WOULD COME IN THE NAME OF FREEDOM I THINK IS REALLY WELL-SAID HERE.

THE, ACTUALLY, TORTURE BEGAN UNDER CLINTON AS AN OFFICIAL POLICY WE WERE TORTURING IN VIETNAM, TRUE. BUT AS AN OFFICIAL POLICY CLINTON STARTED A PROGRAM IN 1995 CALLED “EX-TRAORDRY RENDITION”.

WHEN WE BEGAN TRANSFERRING SUSPECTED TERRORISTS TO COUNTRIES SUCH AS EGYPT, SYRIA AND MOROCCO TO DO OUR DIRTY WORK. DIRTY WORK INCLUDES HANGING PRISONERS FROM CEILING. FRACTURING THEIR SPINES. USING ELECTRICAL SHOCKS. TEARING THEIR FINGERNAILS OUT.

WHEN AL GORE DROPPED THE PHRASE AMERICAN GULAG HE WASN’T KIDDING. CIA AND PENTAGON HAVE A LARGE NETWORK OF DETENTION CENTERS TODAY THE U.N. CONDEMNED.

U.N. JUST RELEASED A REPORT. WATER BOARDING WHICH IS THE FAVORITE TECHNIQUE OF LATIN AMERICAN DICTATORS WHERE YOU NEARLY DROWN THE SUSPECT IS A FAVORITE AT GUANTANAMO AS WELL.

U.N. SUGGESTED GUANTANAMO GET SHUT DOWN. FAT CHANCE OF THAT I WOULD SAY. NOT A VERY PRETTY PICTURE.

THE FOURTH FACTOR, THAT, I THINK, IS INDICATIVE THAT, WE HAVE, WE’RE PASSING FROM THE SCENE, IS THE MASTERFUL MARGINALIZATION OF THE U.S. ON THE WORLD STAGE.

CHINA SEEMS LIKELY TO OVERTAKE US ECONOMICALLY. EUROPEAN UNION IS AHEAD OF US SCIENTIFICALLY. WE CONTINUE TO SINK DEEPLY INTO DEBT NATIONALLY AND IN TERMS OF A HUGE TRADE DEFICIT. IN FACT THE TRADE DEFICIT, IS, ABOUT 8 TRILLION DOLLARS RISING DAILY AND NATIONAL DEBT IS THROUGH THE ROOF. WE’RE BEING KEPT AFLOAT BY HUGE LOANS FROM EUROPE, JAPAN AND CHINA.

TO SUPPORT A LIFE-STYLE THAT, KIND OF WASTEFUL, REALLY. AND, SOONER OR LATER THEY WILL PULL THE PLUG. WHAT HAPPENS THEN?

WHAT HAPPENS WHEN OPEC SHIFTS FROM DOLLARS TO EUROS AS AN EXCHANGE? ECONOMISTS AS AS CENTRIST AS PAUL VOLCKER HEAD OF THE FED. WHO WAS THE FED IN THE LATE 70. THERE WILL PROBABLY BE A MAJOR CRASH AND DEVALUATION OF THE DOLLAR FOR ABOUT 0%.

 

MAYBE FIVE TO SEVEN YEARS WHAT HE IS PREDICTING. IN TERMS HEALTH THE WORLD HEALTH ORGANIZATION TWO YEARS AGO DID A STUDY OF HEALTHCARE SYSTEMS AROUND THE WORLD. THE UNITED STATES RANKED 37th. THAT’S KIND OF INTERESTING. IF YOU ASK MOST AMERICANS WE’RE THE BEST. IN FACT SAUDI ARABIA, CAME IN 26th. OKAY? PROBABLY IF YOU GET SICK YOU’RE BETTER OFF GOING TO RIYADH GENERAL THAN THE UNIVERSITY OF VIRGINIA.

THAT’S A STRANGE THOUGHT, ISN’T IT? SO, RECENTLY, I HAVE TO SAY, ABOUT, JUST, TWO WEEKS AGO THERE WAS A ARTICLE IN THE NEW SIGN THAT WAS AMERICAN AMERICAN-BRITISH  STUDY COMPARATIVE OF THE HEALTH LEVEL OF AMERICANS AND BRITS.

I QUOTE, HEALTH OF THE RICHEST PEOPLE IN THE UNITED STATES IS AS POOR AS THE WORST EDUCATED LOWEST PAID AMONG THE ENGLISH.

JUST THINK OF THAT. WE LAUGH AT NATIONAL HEALTH.

THEY’RE DOING A WHOLE LOT BETTER THAN FREE ENTERPRISE. SOME OF MY READERS HAVE ASKED ME IF I’M PLANNING TO DO A THIRD VOLUME. YOU DID TWILIGHT. NOW YOU’VE DONE NIGHT, BASICALLY. WELL YOU GIVE US DAWN? HISTORY DOESN’T THAT WAY UNFORTUNATELY.

YOU KNOW, NICE TO HAVE A RENAISSANCE THAT WOULD BE WONDERFUL. COLLAPSED EMPIRES TEND TO STAY COLLAPSED. THAT’S THE PATTERN. IN THE CASE OF THE REAWAKENING BEGAN IN THE 11th CENTURY. IT WASN’T IN ITALY. WAS IN NORTHERN EUROPE.

URBAN REVIVAL. AND IT WAS 600 YEARS AFTER THE FALL OF ROME. IN FACT, ABOUT ROME I WOULD HAVE TO SAY THE ROMAN EMPIRE DID NOT SO MUCH AS FALL AS FALL AWAY. IT DIDN’T GET A SECOND CHANCE. I DON’T THINK WE WILL EITHER. 30 YEARS AGO, THE SUPREME COURT JUSTICE WILLIAM O DOUGLAS, WROTE, AS NIGHTFALL DOES NOT COME AT ONCE NEITHER DOES OPPRESSION. IN BOTH INSTANCES THERE IS A TWILIGHT WHEN EVERYTHING REMAINS UNCHANGED.

IT IS IN SUCH TWILIGHT WE MOST AWARE OF CHANGE IN THE AIR, LEST WE BECOME UNWITTING VICTIMS OF THENESS. THAT PREDICTION HAPPENED. WE WERE NOT AWARE OF THE CHANGE IN THE AIR. THE CHANGE DID TAKE PLACE. THIS IS NO LONGER TWILIGHT. WE ARE NOW IN DARK AGES OF AMERICA, THANK YOU. ON THAT HAPPY NOTE, I’M WONDERING IF YOU GUYS HAVE ANY QUESTIONS. I CAN ALSO READ. IF YOU WANT ME TO READ A COUPLE PAGES I WILL BE GLAD TO DO THAT? WOULD YOU RATHER MOVE TO QUESTIONS OR READ A LITTLE BIT? I’M OPEN TO WHATEVER YOU LIKE. FINE, LET ME DO THAT. FOR THOSE WHO HAVE THE BOOK, LET’S SEE THIS IS 232. IT WHAT WOULD IT TAKE FOR TO US START DOING SOMETHING DIFFERENT?

TWO DAYS AFTER 9/11, CHALMERS JOHNSON REMARKED IN AN INTERVIEW, I KNOW IT SOUNDS CRUEL TO SAY, BUT THE PEOPLE OF NEW YORK, WERE COLLATERAL DAMAGE OF AMERICAN FOREIGN POLICY. END OF QUOTE.

IRAQ WAS PART OF OUR MIDDLE EASTERN SHADOW, LEFT OVER FROM 1991. SEPTEMBER 11th WAS THE DELAYED COLLATERAL DAMAGE THAT ENSUED. THE SHADOW MADE MANIFEST. INSTEAD OF FIGURING THIS OUT, THE U.S. GOVERNMENT, CHOSE TO REPEAT THE CYCLE, AFTER A SHORT AND APPARENTLY BOTCHED PURSUIT OF OSAMA BIN LADEN. WITH EVEN GREATER INTENSITY, COMPLETING THE PROCESS, WHEREBY THE COLD WAR WAS REPLACED BY THE TERROR WAR. AND TERROR, AS PATRICK BUCHANAN RIGHTLY REMARKS IS PRICE OF EMPIRE.

TWO GO HAND IN HAND. ON DECEMBER 6th, 2004, THE “NEW YORKER” RAN A MAGAZINE COVER THAT FOUND EXTREMELY HAUNTING. THE ARTWORK IN THE SHADOWS, IS BY CARTER GOODRICH. THE PICTURE IS OF A STREET SCENE, PROGRAMS IN MIDTOWN MANHATTAN. WITH AMERICANS, FESTIVELY DRESSED DOING THEIR CHRISTMAS SHOPPING. THERE IN THE BACKGROUND IN THE SHADOWS, DRESSED LIKE SANTA AND READING, RINGING A SALVATION ARMY BELL IS OSAMA BIN LADEN, A WATCHFUL AND SOBER EXPRESSION ON HIS FACE.

THE MESSAGE IS VERY CLEAR, HERE. HERE IN THE MIDST OF LUXURY, LUXURY ENJOYED AT EXPENSE OF THIRD WORLD POVERTY AND MISERY IS AMERICA’S GUILTY CONSCIENCE. FOR WHOM DOES THE BELL TOLL THEN? FOR US. BUT WE DON’T SEEM ABLE TO HEAR IT.

HOW LONG BEFORE AL QAEDA DETONATES A NUCLEAR DEVICE IN MAJOR AMERICAN CITY? SOMETHING LIKE THAT IS COMING, FOR OSAMA BIN LADEN IS NO FOOL. HE DIDN’T EXPECT THE AMERICAN PEOPLE TO PAY ANY ATTENTION TO ANYTHING HE SAYS. RATHER THE PURPOSE OF HIS PUBLIC STATEMENT TO WIN SYMPATHY FROM THE ARAB WORLD FOR SUCH AN ATTACK, HAVING SAID IN EFFECT I WARNED THEM AGAIN AND AGAIN BUT THEY JUST WOULDN’T LISTEN. GRAHAM ALLISON OF HARVARD UNIVERSITY, CENTER FOR SCIENCE AND INTERNATIONAL AFFAIRS AND AUTHOR OF, NUCLEAR TERRORISM, POINTS OUT THAT IT IS NOT ALL THAT DIFFICULT FOR A TERRORIST GROUP TO MANUFACTURE A NUCLEAR BOMB, IF IT CAN ACQUIRE THE REQUISITE AMOUNT OF WEAPONS-GRADE URANIUM 235.

REFLECTING ON THE POSSIBILITY OF THIS HAPPENING, A FRIEND OFP MINE WROTE, WE CAN CHANGE OUR POLICIES NOW TOWARD A LEGITIMATE MIZED FORM OF THE GLOBAL RULE OF LAW OR AFTER ONE OR MORE CITIES ARE DESTROYED AND OUR ECONOMY GOES TOTALLY BANKRUPT I RESPONDED I HAD NO DOUBT AS WHAT OUR CHOICE IS GOING TO BE. ODDLY ENOUGH I BELIEVE THE CULTURE ALREADY UNDERSTANDS THIS ON AN INTUITIVE LEVEL. THESE SORTS OF PREDICTIONS OR INSIGHTS FREQUENTLY SURFACE, IN A CREATIVE CONTEXT AS ON THE “NEW YORKER” COVER. IN AN EPISODE OF THE TV SERIES, “JACK AND BOBBY” WHICH AIRED IN DECEMBER 2004, THIS IS NARRATIVE PARTLY PROJECT AS FUTURE SCENARIO OF AMERICA IN THE 20 ’40s WHEN WE’RE NO LONGER THE WORLD’S LEADING POWER A POLITICIAN LOOKS BACK ON THE EVENTS.

IS SEPTEMBER 12th, 2041 RELATES HOW ISLAMIC FUNDAMENTALIST GROUP DROVE A TRUCK INTO MIDTOWN CHICAGO AND DETONATE AD NUCLEAR WARHEAD. ONLY THING DUBIOUS ABOUT THIS SCENARIO IT PROBABLY WON’T TAKE 30 PLUS YEARS FOR SUCH AN EVENT TO OCCUR. FAILING TO GRASP THE MEANING OF 9/11 AND ONE DIALS 911 IN AMERICA IN CASES OF EMERGENCY WE MANAGED CONVINCE OURSELF WHAT IN FACT PROFOUND STRUCTURAL WEAKNESS WAS APEX OF POWER. THIS IS A TRAGIC INFUSION. DENIAL WOULD BE MORE ACCURATE.

IT WILL COST US DEARLY. ROME WRITES, HARVARD UNIVERSITY’S JOSEPH NYE, SUCCUMBED NOT TO RISE OF NEW EMPIRE BUT TO INTERNAL DECAY AND DEATH OF A THOUSAND CUTS FROM VARIOUS BEARIAN GROUP UNQUOTE IF THE MEANING OF 9/11 WAS WAKE-UP CALL THE LESSON IN 9/11 WE LEARN NOTHING AT ALL. AND BENEATH THIS WILLFUL IGNORANCE IS THE DEEPER LAYER I MENTIONED EARLIER, THE VOID. IT IS THIS THAT WE FEAR ABOVE ALL ELSE. JUST CENTURY AGO THE GREEK POET WROTE A POEM CALLED, WAITING FOR THE BEAR BEARIANS WHICH HE DESCRIBES THE ROMANCE ASSEMBLED IN THE FORUM WAITING FOR THE BARBARIANS TO SHOW UP AT THE GATES. THEY WAIT AND WAIT BUT THE BARBARIANS FAIL TO COME. HE CONCLUDES, WHY THE SUDDEN BEWILDERMENT THIS CONFUSION? HOW SERIOUS PEOPLE FACES HAVE BECOME. WHY ARE THE STREETS AND SQUARES EMPTYING SO RAPID EVERYONE GONE HOME LOST IN THOUGHT?

BECAUSE NIGHT HAS FALLEN AND THE BARBARIANS HAVEN’T COME. SOME OF OUR MEN JUST IN FROM THE BORDER SAY THERE ARE NO BARBARIANS ANY LONGER. NOW WHAT IS GOING TO HAPPEN TO US WITHOUT BARBARIANS? THEY WERE THOSE PEOPLE. A KIND OF SOLUTION. PUTTING THE ENEMY OUT THERE, QUOTE UNQUOTE IS INDEED A KIND OF SOLUTION A WAY OF KEEPING THE VOID AT BAY. SOLVES THE PROBLEM OF HAVING NO INHERENT PURPOSE OR PERHAPS NO PURPOSE AT ALL AS BUDDHISTS SAY WOULD THAT BE SO BAD? AS LONG AS WE CAN’T LIVE WITH EMPTY SPACE SO TO SPEAK OUR CHOICES ARE NOT REALLY SHOWSES THEY’RE MERELY COME PULL SHUNS. TOM PAUL COMMENTS THAT LOWELL QUOTE, KNOWS THE HEART OF DARKNESS IN THE AMERICAN IMPERIAL SUBLIME. HERE IS THE END OF LOW’S POEM. WAKING EARLY SUNDAY MORNING. PITY THE PLANET ALL JOY GONE FROM THE SWEET VOLCANIC COMB.

PEACE TO OUR CHILDREN WHEN THEY FALL IN SMALL WAR THE HEALS OF SMALL WAR UNTIL THE END OF TIME TO POLICE THE EARTH, A GHOST, ORBITING FOREVER. LOST IN OUR MOW NOT NEWS SUBLIME. SO WE MISSED THE BOAT ON 9/11. WE DECIDED TO CONTINUE POLICING THE EARTH MORE DRAMATICALLY WE EVER HAVE TOWARD THE END OF TIME. THIS DECISION IS TURNING US INTO GHOSTS AS WE ENTER THE DARK AGES IN EARNEST. CHOOSING THE ROAD NOT TAKEN WOULD HAVE REQUIRED SOMETHING REMARKABLE. I DON’T THINK HISTORY PROVIDES US WITH SINGLE EXAMPLE OF A NATION THAT MANAGED TO TAKE THAT PATH. THIS IS NOT AT HAPPY CONCLUSION FOR ME TO COME TO AND IN SOME WAYS THIS HAS BEEN A PAINFUL BOOK TO WRITE. AFTER ALL I WOULDN’T BE HERE TODAY WITHOUT THE LARGEST OF AMERICA. AND WHEN IN 1920 MY FAMILY STEAMED PAST THE STATUE OF LIBERTY AND TOWARD ELLIS ISLAND IT WAS THE MOST DRAMATIC MOMENT OF THEIR LIFES.

MY MOTHER USED TO TELL THE STORY OF HER FATHER WHO AT SOME POINT AFTER WORLD WAR II UPON FINDING A SMALL AMERICAN FLAG ON THE GROUND, PICKED IT UP, DUSTED IT OFF AND BROUGHT IT HOME TO PUT ON THE MANTLE PIECE, SAYING IF NOT FOR THIS WE WOULD HAVE ALL PERISHED AUSCHWITZ. I AGREE WITH THE HISTORIAN, WALTER MACK DOING GEL WHEN HE WRITES, QUOTE, NO LARGE NATION ON EARTH HAS PROVIDED MORE STABILITY, PROSPERITY, SECURITY AND LIBERTY TO MORE PEOPLE THAN HAS THE UNITED STATES, END OF QUOTE.

THIS WAS THE GLORY OF, TO BE A LAND OF GREAT PROMISE, A REFUEL FROM POLITICAL TYRANNY. A PLACE OF IMMENSE CREATIVE ENERGY AND THE WORLD LOCUST OF POLITICAL FREEDOM. BUT THE GLORY HAD A SHADOW. A SET OF STRUCTURAL PROBLEMS THAT WERE PRESENT QUITE EARLY ON AND THAT EVENTUALLY, LANDED US IN THE VERY DIFFERENT AND INGLORIOUS PLACE.

THOSE OF US WHO NOW HAVE DIFFERENT VALUES FROM THE COUNTRY, MAY HAVE TO LOOK ELSEWHERE FOR HOPE, QUALITY, HUMANISM POSSIBLY FREEDOM WHICH IS NOT EXACTLY WHAT WE HAD IN MIND WHEN WE WERE GROWING UP. AND ALTHOUGH IT WOULD BE A FABULOUS TURN OF EVENTS, IT IS NEVERTHELESS VERY UNLIKELY THE SOLUTION TO THE AMERICAN DILEMMA, CAN COME FROM WITHIN AMERICA ITSELF. THE SITE GEIST IT WOULD SEEM IS MOVING ON. THANKS SO MUCH.

[APPLAUDING] LET ME TAKE YOUR QUESTIONS. YES, SIR. >> I’VE GOT A QUESTION. COMPARE ROME TO THE. ALSO, AND I’M GOING TO CONTEND THAT ROME WAS NEVER IN GOOD SHAPE AND THAT NEITHER WAS THE UNITED STATES. >> THAT’S

INTERESTING. OKAY. >> 100 YEARS AGO WERE A FEW WHITE WEALTHY FREEDOMS WITH THE FREEDOMS

YOU JUST QUOTED MOST PEOPLE DID NOT ENJOY PROSPERITY. >> THAT’S RIGHT. THAT’S TRUE.

WHY ARE WE WORSE OFF TODAY? WHY ARE WE DISINCIDENTING TODAY, WHEN, EVERYTHING WAS IN PLACE FOR DISINTEGRATION 100 YEARS AGO?

YEAH. IT’S AN INTERESTING THING. I THINK WE WERE — YOU’RE RIGHT THOSE WEAKNESSES WERE CERTAINLY PRESENT. IN FACT I HAVE A WHOLE SECTION ON AMERICAN VALUE SYSTEMS IN THE COLONIES IN THE 1790s HOW BY THE TIME JEFFERSON GOT ELECTED CERTAIN THINGS WERE IN PLACE WERE ESSENTIALLY WORKING AGAINST JUST TOOK A LONG TIME TO PLAY OUT.

IT’S PART OF IT. THESE THINGS TAKE A LONG TIME TO PLAY OUT. PART OF IT THERE IS A KIND OF DIE LET PARTICULARLY PRINCIPLE AT WORK WHICH IS FUNNY WHEN IT APPLIES TO CIVIL SAYS. BY DIE LET TICK CALL, AND OPPOSITES ARE RELATED. THAT ALLOWED US TO EXPAND AS A NATION, FOR EXAMPLE, THE WHAT I SEE IS SUNNY FACE OF THE UNITED STATES. TECHNOLOGY, ENTREPRENEUR, EXTREME INDIVIDUALISM, THE YANKEE CAN DO MENTALITY ALL OF THAT.

THAT ENABLED OUR ECONOMY TO EXPAND. OUR FRONTIER TO EXPAND. ALL THAT SORT OF THING. THAT WAS THE RISING CUSP. ALTHOUGH THERE’S ANOTHER HISTORY THAT YOU’RE TALKING ABOUT THAT DEFINITELY IS THERE. BUT THE PROBLEM OF THE DIALECTICAL PROBLEM IS AFTER A WHILE YOU CAN’T KEEP DOING THAT WITHOUT DOING A LOT OF DAMAGE.

IN OTHER WORDS THE VERY THINGS ALLOWED TO YOU EXPAND TURN AGAINST YOU BECOME NAILS IN YOUR COFFIN. NOW A PERSON IN MID LIFE WHO MIGHT REALIZE THIS ABOUT THEMSELVES I SUPPOSE CAN GO TO A THERAPYIST, SAY I WANT TO WORK ON THIS SORE SOMETHING LIKE THAT. A NATION CAN’T GO TO A THERAPIST AND ALSO CAN’T TURN ON A DIME. IT CAN’T THEN START TO SAY WE’LL DO THINGS VERY, VERY DIFFERENTLY. THAT’S WHY I MAKE A LOT OUT OF THIS BOOK ABOUT JIMMY CARTER. HE WAS ONE PERSON THAT COMES ALONG IN POSTWAR PERIOD SAID WE’LL DO THINGS DIFFERENTLY.

YOU KNOW WHAT HAPPENED TO HIM. IS A FIGURE OF RIDICULE, WHEN THE TRUTH HE WAS PROBABLY THE MOST HEROIC POSTWAR AMERICAN PRESIDENT WE HAD.

HE IS NOW A JOKE. IF SAW HIM AS HEROIC AND SOMEBODY LET’S SAY RONALD REAGAN IS JOKE WE WOULD BE ON OUR WAY TOWARDS SOME SORT OF RECOVERY.

THAT WILL NOT HAPPEN. THAT WILL NOT HAPPEN. >> I AGREE WITH YOU ABOUT CARTER. I’M JUST SAYING — SUNNY FACE OF AMERICA, EXPANSION, I DON’T THINK ANY EXPANSIONTOOK PLACE WITHOUT KILLING PEOPLE. >> YEAH. THAT’S RIGHT. >> PERIOD. I MEAN –. NOT AT ALL. NOBODY SAID, I CAN’T WAIT TO JOIN THE UNITED STATES. >> RIGHT. >> WE TOOK IT. AND — IT

HAS BEEN THAT WAY SINCE DAY ONE AND, THERE’S NOTHING DIFFERENT NOW. >> RIGHT. BUT YOU SEE, THE EXPANSION WORKED, IS WHAT I’M
SAYING. YOU BUY, REALLY BY SOMETHING LIKE 1875 WE WERE THE MAJOR MANUFACTURER ON PLANET.

I MEAN THAT’S WHAT I’M TALKING ABOUT. I’M NOT DENYING IS A HIDDEN HISTORY. >> EVEN THERE, THAT’S NOT BECAUSE OF TECHNOLOGY. WE WERE THE MAJOR MANUFACTURER ON THE BACK OF PEOPLE THAT WE WERE ABUSING. >> RIGHT, RIGHT. AND — >> NOT WE WERE SO SMART. BECAUSE WE WERE SO BRUTAL. >> THAT MAY A BE POINT. >> WELL —

ANDREW CARNEGIE WAS NOT A BRUTE? YES; HE WAS A BRUTE.
THAT’S TRUE. IT JUST, THERE IS A HIDDEN HISTORY HERE
THAT YOU’RE TALKING ABOUT. AND IT WORKS VERY WELL FOR A
CERTAIN PERIOD OF TIME.

BUT NOT FOR THE PEOPLE THAT ARE SUPPRESSED THAT. ONLY THING I’M SAYING THAT THE SYSTEM EXPANDS AT LEAST IN THE PUBLIC VIEW AND IN TERMS OF THINGS LIKE, GROSS DOMESTIC PRODUCT, OWNERSHIP OF LAND, IT EXPANDS.

AND THEN FINALLY, THAT DOESN’T WORK ANYMORE. THAT DOESN’T MEAN THAT THE THINGS YOU’RE TALKING ABOUT WERE NOT PRESENT. THEY WERE, BUT IT DIDN’T STOP THAT EXPANSION.

AS YOU SAY, IT MAY HAVE PROMOTED. IT MAY BE TRUE THAT, CIVILIZATIONS DO THAT IN GENERAL, BUT FINALLY THERE ARE LIMITS TO WHAT HAPPENS, I THINK WE’VE REACHED IT. IN FACT I WOULD SAY THE PERIOD OF EARNEST DECLINE IN THE UNITED STATES BEGAN IN THE EARLY ’70s. YES, SIR?

>> IT ALREADY WAS TORTURE HAS BEEN OFFICIAL POLICY FOR A LONG TIME. I’M JUST WONDERING CRASH OR SOMETHING LIKE YOU SAY POLICE STATE, WE’RE IN NOW, HOW MANY, U.S.TROOPS WOULD NEVER EVEN GET A CHANCE TO DEFEND THIS COUNTRY.

>> YEAH. I MEAN, YOU KNOW, THAT T-SHIRT WHICH SHOWS, A BUNCH OF NATIVE AMERICANS RUNNING AROUND IT SAYS, THE FIRST TERRORISTS? YOU KNOW, YOU KNOW.

THAT’S A, ABSOLUTELY RIGHT. YOU HAD A QUESTION? >> KNOWING WHAT YOU KNOW AND FOR PEOPLE WHO, FEEL, SEE THE WORLD LIKE YOU DO, HOW DO YOU COPE? >> GOOD QUESTION. GOOD QUESTION. YOU KNOW, I’VE BEEN ASKED THIS A LOT, ON THE, YOU KNOW THE LECTURE TOUR, I’VE BEEN GOING ON. WHAT I HAVE TO SAY IS THAT, FOR ME, AS I SAID THIS WAS A PAINFUL TO WRITE, BECAUSE, I DIDN’T REALLY REALIZE HOW BAD IT WAS, WHEN I STARTED OUT. I MEAN I DIDN’T — WHEN YOU DO THE, RECORD OF WHAT THE CIA HAS DONE, IN THE POSTWAR PERIOD TO, LEGITIMATELY ELECTED GOVERNMENT, GUATEMALA, CHILE, THIS IS QUITE DEPRESSING. SO I DIDN’T QUITE REALIZE.

I ALSO DIDN’T REALIZE, THAT IF YOU PUT TOGETHER ALL THE STRUCTURAL FACTORS, YOU REALLY ARRIVE AT A NO EXIT SITUATION. HOW ARE YOU GOING TO REVERSE ALL THAT? THEY INTERLOCK VERY WELL. THE ONLY THING I CAN SAY IS, FOR ME AS A RESEARCHER THE TRUTH GETS ME HIGH. IN OTHER WORDS I FIND IT EXCITING TO, AS A, TO FIND THE STORY OF WHAT HAPPENED, BETWEEN, PLYMOUTH ROCK AND DEAD ENDING ROCK. IT’S QUITE AN INTERESTING ADVENTURE. FOR ME IT’S EXCITING TO PUT THOSE PIECES TOGETHER.

I’M SORRY I HAD TO COME TO THE CONCLUSION I DID IN A CERTAIN WAY. IF YOU’RE SERIOUS ABOUT RESEARCH, WHATEVER IS THERE IS THERE. IT’S NOT A QUESTION OF WHAT MAKES YOU FEEL GOOD. IT’S JOB OF THE TRUTH IS JUST TO BE THE TRUTH NOT TO MAKE YOU FEEL GOOD. THAT’S HOW I FEEL ABOUT IT. TO ME IT’S VERY POWERFUL AND, I HAVE TO SAY THAT A LOT OF E-MAIL, MESSAGES I’VE GOTTEN FROM READERS, ESSENTIALLY HAVE BEEN, POSITIVE. EMOTIONALLY VERY UPBEAT IN THE SENSE OF SAYING, IT’S REALLY IMPORTANT TO ME, TO KNOW WHAT ACTUALLY EXISTS. I DO NOT WANT TO BE TOLD THAT I SHOULD MEDITATE, JOIN SOME GRASSROOTS ORGANIZATION, NONE OF THAT WILL WORK. WHAT I WANT TO KNOW WHAT IS HAPPENING AND HOW IT HAPPENED. YOU PUT THE PIECES TOGETHER FOR ME. SO, I THINK THERE ARE PEOPLE THAT FEEL THAT. IT’S VERY POWERFUL, TO KNOW WHAT THE STAKES ARE. YES, IN THE BACK. >> HOW DO YOU MAKE SENSE OF SOMETHING LIKE WHAT HAPPENED — IT HOW DO YOU TIE THAT IN TO YOUR VIEW? >> THAT TORE THE FACE OFF OF ANY PRETENSE

THAT WE HAVE ABOUT TAKING CARE OF PEOPLE. NOT THAT WE HAVE — PARDON? >> I NEVER DREAMED I WOULD SEE — >>
THERE WASN’T ANY. IN FACT IT WAS JUST THE STORY OF THE WEEK AND THEN WE WENT ONTO SOMETHING ELSE. WITH WHICH
IS WHAT THE PRESS IS ABOUT IN THE UNITED STATES. THE FIRST THING,

YOU KNOW I MAKE A LOT, IN, IN THE BOOK, ABOUT, THE TIDE BETWEEN THE MACROCOME AND MICRO COME. YOU MICROCOSM. YOU LEARN A LOT ABOUT LARGE-SCALE…TO BE CASE. I’M JUST CURIOUS, IF YOU WERE TO WRITE ATHIRD VOLUME YOU COULD WRITE THE BOOK YOU WRITE. >> THIS IS BOOK I WANTED TO WRITE. >> AS OPPOSED [INAUDIBLE] WHAT WOULD YOU CALL IT? DON’T YOU THINK IT’S ROLE OF CRITICAL…
PATTERNS TO OFFER SOMETHING, OFFER US AN A WAY OUT IN YOUR IMAGINATION? I STILL THINK AMERICA IS OPEN TO INTERPRETATION. I WOULD ARGUE A LOT OF PEOPLE…
I THINK FUNCTION OF THE CRITICAL WRITER IS TO SAY WHAT’S THERE. NOT TO MAKE THE AUDIENCE HAPPY. IT TURNS. >> YOU DON’T HAVE TO MAKE THEM…ABOUT WHETHER IT’S POSITIVE

OR NEGATIVE OR OPTIMISTIC OR NOT OPTIMISTIC. AND, THAT’S WHAT I SAW MYSELF AS DOING. WHAT WOULD I RATHER BE ABLE TO SAY WE’LL PULL OUT OF…

THINGS THAT BUSH HAS DONE WITHOUT TALKING, ABOUT, WELL I THINK A COUPLE OF, OUR ELECTED OFFICIALS HAVE SPOKEN OF IMPEACHMENT. >> JOHN CONYERS….

STATES IS CURIOUS COUNTRY GIVEN ITS PURITAN HISTORY. YOU CAN BUTCHER HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS OF PEOPLE, NOBODY BATS AN EYE. CAN YOU HAVE SEX…

COMBINATION AND WHETHER WE HAVEN’T, REACHED WHERE WE ARE TODAY, AS THE END RESULT OF COMBINING THOSE TWO IN POLITICAL SYSTEM WHERE, MONEY IS…ABOUT THAT, BECAUSE IT’S NOT LIKE, A RETURN TO FEUDALISM WOULD BE A GOOD THING OR ARISTOCRACY OR WHATEVER THERE IS A DOWNSIDE AS WELL. ANALYTICALLY,…
REGIME WHERE THERE WERE DIFFERENT VALUES? >> I DON’T HE SEE THE VALUES AS DIFFERENT. THAT’S THE THING. KERRY WAS THE MOST MILITARISTIC CANDIDATE…POLK. IF HE HAD BEEN IN OFFICE ELECTED, I DON’T THINK, WHAT YOU GET BETWEEN THE, DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE REPUBLICANS AND DEMOCRATS IS EMPIRE…DEMOCRATIC RESULT? >>> DEMOCRACY WORKED. WE DON’T WANT THAT. >> ABSOLUTELY. >> THERE IS ANOTHER NARRATIVE WE COULD HAVE OVER THE COURSE OF…

HERE, THERE ARE, DURING PLY LIFETIME SEE THE EXPANSION OF CIVIL RIGHTS.SEEN THE ECONOMY
TRIPLE IN SIZE OVER THAT TIME. AVERAGE WAGES HAVE GONE UP ENORMOUSLY OVER THAT PERIOD OF TIME, AS WELL AS AMOUNT OF THINGS WE’RE ABLE TO…
BETWEEN APPEARANCE AND REALITY ON THOSE
IS VERY GREAT. STEP BY STEP, IF YOU LOOK
AT THEM, IT’S NOT ACTUALLY, I MEAN THE
ACTUAL BUYING POWER, NOW IS QUITE LESS THAN IT BEFORE BECAUSE OF INFLATION. >> BECAUSE OF — >> NOT REALLY. >> I’M NOT GOING TO LET YOU…IS STRUCTURALLY, THINGS — THINGS CAN LOOK ONE WAY ON ANOTHER, FOR EXAMPLE, YOU CAN LOOK AT STOCK MARKET. YOU CAN SAY, IT’S EXPANDING. IT COLLAPSED A BIT LAST
WEEK REAL ESTATE MARKET IS BETTER OR SOMETHING LIKE THAT. GOT AN $8 TRILLION FOREIGN DEBT. NATIONAL DEBT THAT IS COLOSSAL. MAINSTREAM ECONOMISTS…TO, SWAGGER AND, FLEX THEIR MUSCLES. IS THERE NOT A WAY SHORT OF NUCLEAR TEARISM THAT CAN GO AHEAD AND, TEAR ORISM BACK OFF THRIVE AND FLOURISH….

JUST DON’T TO BE, AN EMPIRE ANYMORE. >> [INAUDIBLE]. >> MAYBE, I DON’T KNOW. BUT, IT’S THAT, IT’S THAT LIFE GOES ON, BUT IN THE CASE OF ENGLAND, ENGLAND IS AN INTERESTING EXAMPLE BECAUSE IT HAD A BACKUP, NAMELY US. IT COULD PASS THE TORCH ON TO US. IN FACT THAT WAS THE AGREEMENT BETWEEN ROOSEVELT AND, CHURCHHILL. THAT’S WHAT WOULD HAPPEN. SO WE DON’T HAVE ANYBODY TO PASS THE TORCH ON TO. WE HAVE SERIOUS RIVALS IN THE WORLD, LIKE CHINA AND EUROPEAN UNION AND SO ON. AND SO, I DON’T KNOW HOW WE’LL FARE, THE STATISTICS YOU WERE POINTING OUT EARLIER OF UNDERBELLY OF THINGS YOU’VE GOT A SITUATION WHERE 45 MILLION AMERICANS HAVE NO HEALTHCARE AND NO PROSPECT OF GETTING IT. THE ACTUAL POVERTY LINE AS HE DEFINED HAS 30 MILLION PEOPLE BELOW IT. BUT THAT, WHICH IS SOMETHING, $11,500 FOR FAMILY OF FOUR. QUITE UNREALISTIC. THE TRUTH ABOUT POVERTY IS MUCH LARGER THAN JUST 30 MILLION PEOPLE BELOW POVERTY. LINE. IT’S SORT OF LIKE, YES, LIFE GOES ON AND, MAYBE WE CAN ENJOY THINGS BUT WHO IS IT THAT IS GOING TO ENJOY THINGS AND WHAT PERCENTAGES ARE WE TALKING ABOUT WHAT YOU WERE TALKING ABOUT EARLIER. >> I’M SAYING THAT THERE, GOTTEN OURSELVES IN A FIX, BY, HAVING TO BE, IF NOT THE POLICEMAN OF THE WORLD, THE POLICEMAN OF THE VALUES THAT

WE, ESPOUSE. >> RIGHT. >> IS THERE ANY WAY, TO, NOT DO THAT ANYMORE? >> NOT THAT I KNOW OF. AGAIN I COME BACK TOER. THAT WAS WHAT HE TO DO. AND THE AMERICAN PEOPLE WERE NOT HAVING IT. ANYMORE THAN THEY WERE GOING TO HAVE DEN NEWS KUCINICH.
FROM BOTTOM UP THOUGH? LIKE HAPPENING IN THIS ROOM THOUGH? CAN IT NOT HAPPEN FROM THE BOTTOM UP? >> WHAT IS HAPPENING IN THIS ROOM. WE’RE ASKING DISCUSSION ABOUT IT. >> THAT’S A STEP IN THE RIGHT DIRECTION. >> YES. BUT, HOW MANY, WHAT’S IT GOING TO TAKE? IN OTHER WORDS WHEN PEOPLE SAY TO ME, MAYBE, YOU KNOW, IT COULD BE DIFFERENT.

MY RESPONSE THAT IS, SHOW ME THE LEVERS OF POWER. YOU SHOW ME WHERE THE POWER LIES THAT THINGS COULD BE DIFFERENT AND FOR GOD SAKES TO POINT TO THE DEMOCRATIC PARTY. THEY’RE A JOKE. THEY’RE INTELLECTUALLY BANKRUPT AND POLITICALLY IMPOTENT. LET’S NOT TALK ABOUT HILLARY OR SOMETHING LIKE THIS. >> YEAH BUT THE QUESTION IS WHERE DOES THE POWER LIE. IT’S GOT TO BE, IT CAN’T BE A BUNCH OF PEOPLE TALKING ABOUT THINGS. IT’S A START. BETTER TO HAVE IT THAN NOT HAVE IT. >> — THERE IS RECOMMENDNANT OF OUR SYSTEM THAT IS OPEN TO PEOPLE TO, YOU KNOW, AGAIN WIN DEMOCRATIC COMMUNITY KIND OF ACTION ON A DAILY BASIS. I DON’T KNOW, — DO YOU NOT STILL THINK THERE IS SOME STRUCTURAL OUTLETSES FOR SOME MEANINGFUL CHANGE? >>

I JUST LIKE TO SEE THEM. IN TERMS OF REAL POWER THAT COULD TURN THINGS AROUND. I SEE PEOPLE LIVING, WANTING TO LIVE DIFFERENT LIVES. YOU CAN PROBABLY DO THAT. BUT ACTUALLY SECURING POWER SO THE UNITED STATES MOVES IN A DIFFERENT DIRECTION, I DON’T KNOW WHERE THOSE LEVERS ARE. CERTAINLY NOT MOVEON.ORG. >> — I DON’T KNOW IF, YOU ARE PROBABLY FAMILIAR WITH –? >> YEAH. >> I’M REMINDED OF THAT. THAT EVERY, GREAT, OR, POWERFUL, ENTITY HAS, KNOWN WHAT IT WAS DOING AND MARCHED INTO
IT ANYWAY KIND OF WHAT YOU’RE SAYING. HAD ALL THE RESOURCES TO KNOW AND YET, CAN’T, PULL BACK. >> RIGHT. >> TAKES SEVEN DIFFERENT EXAMPLES OF THAT. MY COMMENT IS, KIND OF, IN DIRECTION OF THIS YOUNG MAN. HAS TO DO WITH HOPE. I THINK IT’S HOPE THAT IS KEEPING US IMMOBILE.

THAT’S INTERESTING. SAY MORE ABOUT THAT. >> WELL, WHEN YOU WERE TALKING ABOUT THE KATRINA NOBODY CARED. A LOT OF PEOPLE DID CARE AND PEOPLE DID WORK AT THAT FOR A LONG TIME. AND, THE PROBLEM IS, THAT THAT THEN, BELIES, THIS COLLECTIVE NOT CARING. LIKE, WE WILL SEND CLOTHING OR EVEN DREW CLOTHING AND WATER TO LOUISIANA.

BUT WE WON’T, GO TO WASHINGTON AND, TEAR THE GOVERNMENT APART. >> THAT’S RIGHT. >> THE REASON IS BECAUSE, THINGS LIKE OUR RESPONSE TO KATRINA GIVE US HOPE THAT SOMEHOW WE’RE REALLY NOT LIKE THAT OR REALLY NOT GOING THERE. AND AS LONG AS WE HAVE HOPE WE’RE NOT GOING TO DO WHAT THEY—
DO IN SOUTH AMERICA WHICH IS PUT OUR BODIES ON THE STREET AND BE WILLING TO BE KILLED. AND, IF YOU’RE NOT THERE, THEN I DON’T SEE ANYTHING POWERFUL ENOUGH, AGREE WITH YOU. >> YOU KNOW IT’S WELL BEEN SAID THAT CHARITY IS THE BOURGEOIS FORM OF JUSTICE. I MEAN, — >> [INAUDIBLE] >> WHAT DOES IT AMOUNT TO? PEOPLE FEEL GOOD FOR A WEEK OR TWO. THEN WE’RE BACK — YOU KNOW. THERE WAS A FAMOUS, LATIN AMERICAN, POLITICAL ORGANIZER. PROBABLY DEAD.—————

BUT, HE MADE THE STATEMENT, WHEN I DISTRIBUTE FOOD TO THE POOR, THE RULING CLASS APPLAUDS. WHEN I TRY TO TEACH THE POOR WHY THEY’RE POOR THEY COME AFTER ME WITH GUNS. >> [INAUDIBLE]. >> DO YOU WALK THE WALK DO YOU GO, DO YOU DO THIS STUFF ALL WEEK? >> I’M NOT ACTIVIST. >> YOU’RE TRYING TO MAKE MONEY OFF BOOKS BUT I DON’T SEE YOU DOING IT. I DON’T SEE YOU GOING OUT.

I’M SORRY. I’M SAYING I’M AN ACTIVIST. >> [INAUDIBLE].[INAUDIBLE]. >>

YOU’RE MISSING THE POINT HERE. I’M NOT CLAIMING TO BE ACT ACTIVIST. >> I’M YOUNGEST PERSON. HEAR TO SOMETHING ELSE. >> GROW TO DIFFERENT LECTURE. >> I LIKE TO DO, APPLAUD YOU, FOR, DOING SOMETHING VERY IMPORTANT IN THAT IS, TO, CREATE, SENSE OF, DISCOMFORT IN PEOPLE. BECAUSE, IT’S THAT, SENSE OF
DISCOMFORT, THAT, CAN ULTIMATELY, IF IT’S, ACUTE ENOUGH CAN ACTUALLY DO SOMETHING. >> YEAH. >> I’M A HOOL SCHOOLER. ONE OF THE THINGS THAT, I ZOO IS TRY TO TEACH CURRENT EVENTS. I FIND MYSELF IN THE SAME POSITION YOU ARE,

OR MAYBE DIFFERENT WHICH IS, HOW TO, PUT, ASPECTS OF THE TRUTH AS I SEE IT TOGETHER, IN A WAY THAT DOESN’T, — I’M AWARE OF, NOT DEPRESSING YOUNG PEOPLE. I FIND THAT IT DOESN’T DEPRESS YOUNG PEOPLE. THEY ENJOY MY CLASS. AS ONE OF THE BEST ONES AROUND AND I THINK IT’S BECAUSE, IT GIVES THEM A, IT VERIFIES SOMETHING THAT THEY FEEL INTERNALLY BUT DOESN’T, SEE A WAY OF CONNECTING THE DOTS. >> I TELL YOU. THAT’S THE MAJOR FEEDBACK. I THOUGHT I WOULD GET A LOT OF HATE MAIL. MAJOR FEEDBACK I’VE GOTTEN THANK YOU. BECAUSE I’M NOT ATTEMPTING TO FOOL ANYBODY.

AND THE, THING ABOUT, I MEAN, ONE, PERSON SAID TO ME ABOUT THE BOOK, YOU KNOW THERE IS A, THERE IS A THING IN CERTAIN SCHOOLS OF THERAPY CALLED A SHOCK METAPHOR. THE SHOCK METAPHOR LAY OUT THE CASE SCENARIO, AND IF YOU DON’T LIKE IT PROPOSE HOW IT WOULD BE DIFFERENT. I’VE DONE THAT IN A CERTAIN WAY. I’M OPEN TO SOMEBODY COMING UP THESE ARE THE LEVERS OF POWER THESE ARE HOW TO CHANGE IT. PERSONALLY I DON’T SEE IT BUT I’M CERTAINLY OPEN TO THAT. I THINK I WAS IN BOULDER GIVING A TALK. ONE FELLOW, 21 YEARS OLD, HE CAME UP PRACTICALLY IN TAERS I BELIEVE IN THE VISION OF THE FOUNDING FATHERS AND I WANT TO DO SOMETHING TO IMPLEMENT IT. I SAID DON’T LET ME GET IN YOUR WAY, GO DO I WILL. MORE POWER TO YOU. I DON’T SEE HOW IT CAN HAPPEN BUT I’M CERTAINLY NOT GOING TO SAY, GO FISHING. I MEAN IF YOU WANT TO DO THAT, THAT’S GREAT. >> SO WHAT, — >> DID YOU SPEAK TO, THE

NEW MONASTICISM YOU SPOKE ABOUT IN THE TWILIGHT OF AMERICAN CULTURE. I THINK THAT GETS INTO WHAT THE GUY LEFT HERE. HE SOMETHING THAT, A POSITIVE, HOPEFUL AND
ACTIVIST ROLE BECAUSE, GOT A LOT OUT OF THAT, WHEN YOU, LAID OUT THE VARIOUS PEOPLE WHO ARE DOING SOMETHING STRUCTURALLY DIFFERENT DOWN HERE. >> RIGHT. >> AND SECONDLY, COULD YOU SPEAK TO, ALSO, TO, THIS GENTLEMAN WAS TALKING ABOUT HOW WELL, A LOT OF THE BRUTALITY

AND INJUSTICE AND, A LOT OF THESE THINGS HAVE BEEN AROUND FOR A LONG TIME BUT, ONE THING, TWO THINGS THAT HAVE CERTAINLY CHANGED OVER THE LAST 100, 200 YEARS OF THIS COUNTRY, HAVE BEEN THE, VAST TECHNOLOGICAL INCREASE AND THE VAST POPULATION INCREASE. NOT JUST IN THIS COUNTRY BUT EVERYWHERE IN THE WORLD. >> RIGHT. >> AND SO, I WONDER HOW MUCH OF THIS, OF THE DECAY GOING ON IS, A RESULT OF THOSE THINGS NOT NECESSARILY, POLITICAL STRUCTURE, THINGS LIKE THIS. TO ME, I THINK CHINA IS DOOMED, AS MUCH AS ANYBODY ON THE PLANET.

>> THAT’S A GOOD QUESTION. AND, A LOT OF THESE NATIONS THAT, TRYING TO, SUCCEED AT A HIGH-TECH LOGICAL LEVEL, AND, HAVE VAST NUMBERS OF PEOPLE, I DON’T SEE HOW A FINITE WORLD CAN POSSIBLY ACCOMMODATE THAT, REGARDLESS OF — >> LET ME ANSWER YOUR QUESTION. I’M HOLDING MY HAND, LIGHT IS RIGHT IN MY EYE I CAN’T SEE YOU UNLESS I DO THAT. AS FAR AS CHINA GOES OR POINT—YOU MAKE ABOUT BEYOND, POLITICAL ISSUES — >> I MEAN THE TECHNOLOGY — >> LET ME ANSWER YOU. >> ALSO THE NIMASTIC. >> ALSO I WILL. THE FIRST THING ECOLOGICAL SITUATION COULD POSSIBLY CATCH UP
TO US BEFORE THE POLITICAL ONE DOES.

YOU’RE ABSOLUTELY RIGHT ABOUT THAT.

I HAVE DISCUSSION IN THE BOOK HOW TECHNOLOGY DEVELOPED OVER PAST 100 YEARS IN THIS COUNTRY. OH THANK YOU. WE MAY BE IN A SITUATION, OF, THAT, THINGS WOULD CRASH, ECONOMICALLY BECAUSE THEY’RE CRASHING ECOLOGICALLY. AND CERTAINLY CHINA IS IN A SITUATION WHERE IT HAS NO ENVIRONMENTAL OR VERY LITTLE ENVIRONMENTAL CONTROLS ON WHAT IT’S DOING. AND SO A LOT OF INDUSTRIAL WASTE, POLLUTION AND SO ON SO FOURTH. ALL THAT MAY BE THE CASE IT’S JUST I CAN’T PREDICT IT. I CAN’T REALLY GUESS IT’S CERTAINLY BAD. THAT’S RIGHT. . . IT’S VERY POSITIVE FOR THE INDIVIDUAL THAT DOES IT, AND I CERTAINLY ADVOCATE DOING THAT. I THINK THOSE ARE GOOD THINGS. BUT I DON’T THINK THAT THEY REALLY CAN AMOUNT TO CHANGING THE WHOLE SYSTEM BECAUSE THEY’RE INDIVIDUAL RESPONSES. IN FACT, WHEN YOU REDUCE THE INDIVIDUAL RESPONSES, IT MEANS YOU’VE LARGELY GIVEN UP ON THE STRUCTURE. SO AGAIN, I COME BACK TO THE ISSUE WHICH IS WHAT I WAS TRYING TO SAY TO HIM, SHOW ME THE LEVERS OF POWER. IT’S NOT THAT I’M SAYING TO HIM OR THAT YOUNG FELLOW IN BOLDER, SOMETHING LIKE THAT, DON’T DO WHAT YOU HAVE TO DO. I MEAN, YOU ONLY LIVE ONCE. YOU MIGHT AS WELL GIVE IT YOUR BEST SHOT. BUT AS AN HISTORIAN/SOCIOLOGIST, WHATEVER I HAVE TO SAY, YOU HAVE TO LOOK AT — IN TERMS OF CHANGE, WHAT ARE THE LEVERS OF POWER. THEY DON’T SEEM TO BE ANYWHERE TODAY. THEY SEEM TO HAVE DISAPPEARED FROM THE SCENE, YOU KNOW. SO THAT’S THE PROBLEM WITH THE MONASTIC. >> THE HOPE THERE WASN’T LIKE NOT CHANGING THE STRUCTURE, BUT THAT FUNCTIONING AS A SEED SO TO SPEAK, FOR WHEN THE COLLAPSE DOES COME, THERE IS GOING TO BE SOMETHING THERE TO — >> WHY NOT?

ONE MORE THING SINCE I GOT YOU HERE. [LAUGHTER] >> YOUR OTHER..BOOKS, — OF THE WORLD — >>

COMING TO YOUR SENSES. >> — SPIRITUALITY. YOU GET INTO THOSE, ABOUT THIS FAULT OF HOW WE’RE SO
DIVORCED AND SEPARATED FROM NATURE,

AND I’M WONDERING, IS THAT PART OF OUR PROBLEM HERE IN THE DARK AGES OF AMERICA? >> THERE AGAIN, THE EQUALIZER QUESTION. BUT JUST VERY, VERY BRIEFLY WITH ALL REGARDS TO THOSE BOOKS, THEY’RE HOPEFUL ABOUT THE NATURE OF THE HUMAN SPIRIT. THAT’S SOMETHING I’M VERY OPTIMISTIC ABOUT.

REMEMBER, THE UNITED STATES IS ONLY 6% OF THE WORLD’S POPULATION. IT’S A VERY SMALL PERCENTAGE OF THE TOTAL LAND MASS. AND IT’S ONLY BEEN AROUND FOR 230 YEARS. IT’S NOT THE BE ALL AND END ALL OF EXISTENCE. AND THE WORLD WILL SURVIVE AFTER THE UNITED STATES PASSES FROM THE SCENE. IT’S JUST THAT — IN OTHER WORDS, THERE MAY BE HOPE ELSEWHERE, SO THOSE LARGER PICTURES ARE ABOUT THE HUMAN SPIRIT WHERE IT MIGHT BE AND SO ON. IT’S JUST THE UNITED STATES, IT SEEMS TO ME, HAS FINALLY PAINTED ITSELF INTO A CORNER. WOMAN HERE. >> I WORKED ON A SMALLER SYSTEM OF CHANGE. ONE OF THE HEARTENING THINGS FOR ME WAS THE LEARNING CRITICAL MASS IS 12%. AND SO IF I COULD CHANGE 12%

OF MY TEACHING STAFF, I COULD CHANGE THE WHOLE SCHOOL. AND IT DID. AND SO IF THERE IS HOPE FOR ME, IT’S TO GET 12% OF THE PEOPLE OF THE COUNTRY TO BECOME TRULY ACTIVIST AND NOT –. AND I COUNT MYSELF IN THE GROUP THAT’S WAITING FOR THE RISE, BECAUSE I DON’T SEE HOW I’M GOING TO MAKE IT HAPPEN. BUT 12% IS NOT THAT MUCH. >> WELL, I DON’T KNOW IF THOSE FIGURES — RIGHT, RIGHT. THEY CALL THEM SET THEORY AND GROUP DYNAMICS. AND IT’S TRUE THAT FOR — WITHIN CERTAIN LIMITS, 12% IS A CRUCIAL FACTOR. I DON’T KNOW IF THAT STILL APPLIES FOR A VERY LARGE HUNDREDS OF MILLIONS OF PEOPLE THAT IT’S 12%. I DON’T KNOW, AND I’M SURE SOMEBODY DID IT. THE ONE PROBLEM IS THAT YOU CAN’T DO ACTUAL EXPERIMENTS ON THIS. YOU KNOW WHAT I MEAN? YOU CAN’T DO CIVILIZATIONAL EXPERIMENTS. YOU CAN DO GROUP EXPERIMENTS. IT MAY BE WITH A CERTAIN PERCENTAGE OF THE UNITED STATES MOVING IN A PARTICULAR DIRECTION, THE ONLY THING IS — THE GREATEST EXAMPLE TO ME WOULD BE THE NEW DEAL. AND THE WAY — AFTER ALL, YOU HAD PEOPLE DEMONSTRATING IN THE STREETS. AND WHEN THE DUST SETTLED ON THE NEW DEAL, MOST OF THE HISTORIANS AGREE, IT PRESERVED CAPITALISM. THAT’S BASICALLY WHAT IT DID. YEAH, IT WAS FINALLY, FINALLY NICE, BUT NO GREAT SHAKES. IT DID NOT MOVE THE COUNTRY IN A PROFOUNDLY DIFFERENT DIRECTION. IN FACT, WE’VE BEEN UNRAVELING IT EVER SINCE F.D.R.’S DEATH. SOMEBODY HAD A QUESTION. >> I GUESS THERE’S NOTHING WRONG WITH ANY ECONOMY, AS LONG AS THERE IS JUSTICE. AND SO CAPITALISM ISN’T A PROBLEM. JUSTICE WITHIN CAPITALISM S.

WHAT IS THE PROBLEM WITH DISTRIBUTION AND CAPITALISM AS HAS BEEN WELL SAID IS GOOD FOR ACCUMULATING WEALTH BUT SON GOOD FOR DISTRIBUTING

IT WOULD BE JUST TO GIVE SOMEBODY THIS WAGE FOR THIS JOB INSTEAD OF THIS WAGE. >> THERE ARE ALSO SIMPLY NO EXAMPLES OF A RICH SOCIALIST

IT’S NEVER EXISTED. >> SCANDINAVIA DOES VERY WELL. >> NOT EVEN 50%

OF THE ECONOMY IS UNDER STATE CONTROL. >> IT’S NOT PURELY SOCIALIST, I AGREE WITH YOU THERE. IT IS A SOCIAL WELFARE SYSTEM AND DISTRIBUTES

PERPETUAL GROWTH IS A FUNDAMENTAL OF CAPITALISM, THAT’S ALSO CALLED CANCER, WHICH I HAPPEN TO HAVE. AND IT’S NOT A REALLY GOOD WAY TO LIVE, YOU KNOW. IT DOESN’T WORK. EVENTUALLY IT KILLS THE HOST.
AN ADVANCED FORM OF FUTILISM. >> THEY ARE QUITE DELIGHTED WITH IT. SCANDINAVIANS I MEET ARE NOT IN OPPOSITION TO THEIR SYSTEM. >>
PERPETUAL GROWTH IS A FUNDAMENTAL OF CAPITALISM, THAT’S ALSO CALLED CANCER, WHICH I HAPPEN TO HAVE. AND IT’S NOT A REALLY GOOD WAY TO LIVE,…

SO I DON’T KNOW ENOUGH TO KNOW WHETHER CAPITALISM IS MORE THAN THAT OR DIFFERENT THAN THAT, BUT THAT IS WHAT WE PROMOTE IN OUR CULTURE. OUR CULTURAL BELIEF IS GROWTH IS WONDERFUL AND IT ISN’T. >> IT’S EXPANSION FOR THE SAKE OF EXPANSION. AND ONE PROBLEM — THAT’S WHY I MADE A LOT OF THE BUSINESS OF THE VALUE SYSTEMS OF THE 1790S.

IF YOUR ULTIMATE VALUE SYSTEM IS SIMPLY TO EXPAND, THEN YOU REALLY HAVE NO VALUE SYSTEM. AND THAT’S PART OF OUR CRISIS RIGHT NOW. WHAT DO WE BELIEVE IN AS A NATION? REALLY, WHAT DO WE BELIEVE IN, THAT WE SHOULD JUST HAVE MORE? THAT WAS THAT FAMOUS LINE IN KEY LARGO WITH EDWARD G. ROBINSON WHEN HUMPHREY BOGART CONFRONTS HIM. WHAT IS IT YOU WANT OUT OF LIFE? MORE. THAT IS NOT A VALUE SYSTEM. A COUNTRY THAT IS RIDING SOMETHING LIKE THAT IS BASICALLY EMPTY AT THE CORE. YES. >> SO IS THE DARK AGES IN FACT COMING ABOUT BECAUSE OF OUR MASS APATHY? I MEAN, I UNDERSTAND THAT WE’RE SAYING IN TERMS OF KATRINA WE WERE NOT APATHETIC. WE WENT DOWN, WE TOOK
MONEY, WE TOOK FOOD, WE TRIED TO HELP THESE PEOPLE. BUT WE WERE APATHETIC IN THE SENSE THAT WE ALLOWED OUR GOVERNMENT TO BEHAVE IN THE WAY THAT THEY DID WITHOUT BASICALLY SAYING ANYTHING ABOUT IT. WE’VE ALLOWED OUR GOVERNMENT TO DO LOTS OF THINGS WITHOUT ANY REAL PROTEST AT ALL ON THE PART OF THE AMERICAN PEOPLE. AND I’M WONDERING IF YOUR CONCEPT OF DARK AGES IS, IN FACT, PREDICATED ON THIS TOTAL AND COMPLETE APPARENT APATHY ON THE PART OF THE PEOPLE TO DEMAND MORE. >> I WOULD SAY IT’S NOT THE ONLY FACTOR, BUT IT CERTAINLY CONTRIBUTES TO IT. BUT THE THING OF LIVING IN A WORLD IN WHICH ONLY THE
INDIVIDUAL COUNTS FINALLY WINDS UP WITH KATRINA. THAT’S WHAT YOU FINALLY GET, YOU KNOW. IN THE FACE OF REPAIRING THE LEVEES WHICH COULD HAVE BEEN DONE IN ADVANCE, YOU DON’T BOTHER. IT’S STUFF LIKE THAT. >> IT’S GOING TO HAPPEN AGAIN. [LAUGHTER] >> IF THERE IS A HURRICANE THIS SUMMER OF THE MAGNITUDE OF THAT, YOU KNOW WHAT HAPPENED LAST TIME WON’T HAPPEN THIS TIME.

IF YOUR ULTIMATE VALUE SYSTEM IS SIMPLY TO EXPAND, THEN YOU REALLY HAVE NO VALUE SYSTEM. AND THAT’S PART OF OUR CRISIS RIGHT NOW. WHAT…

MONEY, WE TOOK FOOD, WE TRIED TO HELP THESE PEOPLE. BUT WE WERE APATHETIC IN THE SENSE THAT WE ALLOWED OUR GOVERNMENT TO BEHAVE IN THE WAY THAT THEY DID WITHOUT BASICALLY SAYING ANYTHING ABOUT IT. WE’VE ALLOWED OUR GOVERNMENT TO DO LOTS OF THINGS WITHOUT ANY REAL PROTEST AT ALL ON THE PART OF THE AMERICAN PEOPLE. AND I’M WONDERING IF YOUR CONCEPT OF DARK AGES IS, IN FACT, PREDICATED ON THIS TOTAL AND COMPLETE APPARENT APATHY ON THE PART OF THE PEOPLE TO DEMAND MORE. >> I WOULD SAY IT’S NOT THE ONLY FACTOR, BUT IT CERTAINLY CONTRIBUTES TO IT. BUT THE THING OF LIVING IN A WORLD IN WHICH ONLY THE
INDIVIDUAL COUNTS FINALLY WINDS UP WITH KATRINA. THAT’S WHAT YOU FINALLY GET, YOU KNOW. IN THE FACE OF REPAIRING THE LEVEES WHICH COULD HAVE BEEN DONE IN ADVANCE, YOU DON’T BOTHER. IT’S STUFF LIKE THAT. >> IT’S GOING TO HAPPEN AGAIN. [LAUGHTER] >> IF THERE IS A HURRICANE THIS SUMMER OF THE MAGNITUDE OF THAT, YOU KNOW WHAT HAPPENED LAST TIME WON’T HAPPEN THIS TIME.

WELL, FAMOUS LAST WORDS. I HOPE

YOU’RE RIGHT. I HOPE YOU’RE RIGHT. >> I’M SAYING THAT PEOPLE ARE — I’M NOT SAYING THE VOTERS

ARE PRESSED IN. I’M SAYING PEOPLE ARE GETTING THEMSELVES READY SO THEY WON’T HAVE TO ENDURE THAT CRITICISM AGAIN.

THE POWERS THAT BE. THEY WILL GET THEMSELVES READY BECAUSE THEY WENT THROUGH A PRETTY ROUGH PATCH THERE. I’M JUST SAYING — >> YOU MAY BE RIGHT, BUT — >> I’M SAYING THAT IS NOT GOING TO HAPPEN AGAIN, AT LEAST NOT THIS SUMMER. MAYBE NEXT SUMMER. >> IT’S JUST WHAT I FLASHED ON WHEN YOU SAID THAT WAS THAT WONDERFUL SKIT FROM

SATURDAY NIGHT

LIVE, YOU KNOW, THE SUED “BUSH, THE GUY WHO ACTS THE PARTY BUSH AND HE’S GIVING A SPEECH

ON HOW GREAT SHAPE THE COUNTRY IS IN. AND HE SAYS, LET ME REMIND YOU THAT THERE HASN’T BEEN A HURRICANE IN SIX MONTHS. SO, I MEAN, YOU MAY BE RIGHT, BUT I’LL BELIEVE IT WHEN I SEE IT. >> PERSISTENT CRITICISM IS PESSIMISTIC. BUT TO ME IT MAKES ME FEEL NOT CRAZY. WHAT I’M ALWAYS HEARING, THIS IS THE RICHEST COUNTRY IN THE WORLD, MOST WONDER OF

Unidentified Speaker

THE COUNTRY IN THE WORLD. I TURN ON THE TV AND I SEE PEOPLE DROWNING AND STARVING AND LIVING LIKE ANIMALS IN A SPORTS ARENA, THEN I FEEL INSANE. >> YOU’RE RIGHT, THAT IS THE MOST PERSISTENT CRITICISM. TO ME IT’S KIND OF AMUSING BECAUSE IF THERE IS ONE CHARACTERISTIC THAT IS QUINTESSENTIAL IS OPTIMISM. THERE ARE SOME

GOOD THINGS ABOUT THAT OBVIOUSLY. THERE ARE A LOT OF GOOD THINGS ABOUT IT IF WHAT YOU’RE SAYING IS CORRESPONDING TO WHAT’S ACTUALLY HAPPENING. OTHERWISE IT’S CALLED DENIAL, YOU KNOW. AND THE THING IS THAT WE ARE ALL RAISED ON THIS. WE ARE RAISED ON WALT DISNEY AND RALPH WALDO EMERSON. FROM THE EARLIEST DAYS OF CHILDHOOD, I GOT THIS IMAGE THAT WE’RE THE BIGGEST AND THE BEST. THERE ARE INTERESTING STUDIES OF SURVEYS, POLLS TAKEN OF AMERICANS OF THE UNITED STATES IN TERMS OF WHAT IS ACTUALLY HAPPENING VERSUS REALITY. ONE POLL REVEALED MOST AMERICANS BELIEVE THAT FOREIGN AID IS 25% OF OUR BUDGET. NOW, IT HAPPENS TO BE .25% OF OUR BUDGET. MOST AMERICANS SURVEYED WOULD SAY HEALTH WISE WE’RE NUMBER ONE. WE’RE NUMBER 37. THE GERMANS CALLED SIGN AND SHINE, APPEARANCE AND REALITY. THE DISTANCE BETWEEN APPEARANCE AND REALITY IS VERY GREAT. IT’S VERY HARD FOR US TO GIVE THAT UP. I MEAN, TOOTH AND NAIL WE DON’T WANT TO DO THAT. YOU KNOW? BUT FRANKLY IF THERE WAS ANY CHANCE OF REPAIR OR RECOVERY WHATSOEVER, IT WOULD BE BY ADDRESSING THE REALITY, NOT CONTINUING TO KID OURSELVES, I THINK, YOU KNOW. YES. >> I WANT TO GO BACK TO THE QUESTION YOU ASKED SEVERAL TIMES, MAYBE RHETORICALLY, THAT WHERE ARE THE LEVERS OF POWER. I FEEL LIKE PART OF OUR ANGST IS THAT THEY’RE NOT IN THE HANDS OF THE PEOPLE ANY MORE, WHICH WAS WHAT THIS DEMOCRACY WAS ALL ABOUT. >> WE MENTIONED LOBBYISTS EARLIER, THAT WOULD BE A MUCH MORE — >> IT SEEMS OBVIOUS TO ME, AT LEAST, THAT THE POWER IS STILL — THE LEVERS OF THE POWER ARE STILL WHERE THEY’VE–>
ALWAYS BEEN, WITH THE WEALTHIEST PEOPLE IN THE WORLD. AND THE–>
WEALTHIEST PEOPLE IN THE WORLD ARE NO LONGER THE POLITICAL LEADERS OF COUNTRIES. THEY ARE THE HEADS OF CORPORATIONS THAT ARE MULTINATIONAL INDUSTRIES AND BUSINESSES THAT WILL SHIFT THEMSELVES AROUND. THEY HAVE OFFICES ALL AROUND THE WORLD. AND THEY HAVE MORE MONEY THAN MOST OF THE GOVERNMENTS ON THE PLANET. AND THEY CAN INFLUENCE POLITICS AND DECISION MAKING. THEY USE THE GOVERNMENTS AS PAWNS TO ACHIEVE THEIR ENDS, WHICH IS TO PROMOTE THEIR BUSINESS, THEIR PRODUCT MAKING. THEY TRADE LEGISLATION AND EVERYTHING ELSE THAT GOES ON IN THIS COUNTRY IN ORDER TO KEEP INCREASING THEIR PROFITS. >> THERE ARE STILL SOME STATE CONTROLLED, BUT I AGREE WITH YOU — >> IS THAT NOT WHERE THE LEVERS OF POWER EXIST? >> I THINK WHEN PEOPLE ARE ASKING THE QUESTION ABOUT THAT, THOUGH, OBVIOUSLY WHAT THEY MEAN IS IN TERMS OF CREATING CHANGE IN THIS COUNTRY,

WHAT WOULD BE THE LEVERS OF POWER. SO I WASN’T, YOU KNOW, FOR EXAMPLE, POO-POOING THE IDEA OF THE PNEUMONASTIC POWER. IN TERMS OF CHANGE, WHAT WOULD THAT BE. WHAT YOU’RE TALKING ABOUT ARE THE CONSERVATIVE SOURCES OF POWER AND YOU’RE ABSOLUTELY RIGHT. I THINK THE QUESTION WAS RAISED IN THE CONTEXT OF IF YOU’RE GOING TO TURN THINGS AROUND IN THE UNITED STATES, WHERE DOES POWER LIE. AND I DON’T SEE IT. I MEAN, IT’S CERTAINLY NOT DENNIS CRASINICH. YES. >> [INAUDIBLE]. >> WELL, YOU KNOW, IN A PARALLEL UNIVERSE, THAT MIGHT OCCUR. I DON’T KNOW IF THAT WOULD REALLY CHANGE THINGS ALL..
THAT MUCH ACTUALLY. YOU KNOW, THE WHOLE THING ABOUT WHAT I TALK ABOUT IN THE POST WAR PERIOD IS….

YOU’VE GOT TO BE A CERTAIN TYPE OF PERSON TO GET INTO THAT OFFICE AND YOU’VE GOT TO SAY CERTAIN THINGS AND BE WILLING TO DEFEND THE NATIONAL SECURITY STATE. IF YOU DON’T, YOU WON’T BE ELECTED. THE AMERICAN PEOPLE DOES NOT WANT TO HEAR — I MEAN, JAMES HOWARD GUNSLER WHO IS AN URBAN HISTORIAN, I QUOTE HIM A BIT IN THE CHAPTER I HAVE ON URBAN HISTORY MADE THE REMARK THAT AMERICANS WOULD VOTE FOR NAZIS BEFORE THEY WOULD GIVE UP THEIR SUV’S. WE DO NOT HAVE A VIABLE SOCIALIST TRADITION. WE DON’T HAVE ONE. >> IS THAT WHAT YOU WANT? IS THAT WHAT COULD HAVE SAVED US? >> MORE OF A SOCIAL SAFETY NET. FOR ME, FOR EXAMPLE, THE SOVIET UNION WOULD

BE A HORRIBLE MODEL AS AN ALTERNATIVE. I HAD NO INTEREST IN A SOVIET MODEL.

BUT AS I MENTIONED EARLIER, SCANDINAVIA APPEALS A WHOLE LOT MORE. JUST IN TERMS OF BASICALLY PEOPLE HAVE A LOT OF PROTECTION. >> IT JUST DOESN’T — IT SEEMS LIKE SOME MINOR ADJUSTMENTS. UNIVERSAL HEALTH CARE, FOR EXAMPLE, SOUNDS MAJOR. >> IT IS. IN THIS COUNTRY. >> IN THE I HADCTION INDUSTRY, LOTS OF BUSINESSES LOVE THE IDEA BECAUSE THAT MEANS THEY DON’T HAVE TO PAY DIRECTLY FOR HEALTH CARE.

I HEARD THEY HATED THE IDEA BECAUSE IT WAS GOING TO COME OUT OF THEIR POCKETS ONE WAY OR THE OTHER AND THEY’RE LARGELY OPPOSED TO IT. IN FACT, THEY’VE BEEN CANCELING HEALTH BENEFITS. >> IN THE STATES WHERE THE STATES TAKE CARE — MORE CARE OF — >> WHEN THE STATES COVER, YES. >> SHIFTING IT TO THE STATES. >> RIGHT, RIGHT. >> SHIFTING IT TO A GOVERNMENT ENTITY WHERE THEY DO NOT HAVE TO FOOT THE BILL, AND THEREFORE THAT’S A RELEASE —
MY ANSWER IS THAT IF IT WERE THAT EASY, IT WOULD HAVE HAPPENED. WE HAVE GOT A SITUATION WHERE AT LEAST 45 MILLION PEOPLE HAVE NO COVERAGE AT ALL. YOU KNOW? THAT NUMBER IS PROBABLY GROWING.

I’M GUESSING THAT NUMBER WILL INCREASE OVER TIME. SO AGAIN, GOING BACK TO THE CASE OF BISMARKS GERMANY, THERE WAS MORE PROTECTION IN 1971 FOR THOSE CITIZENS THAN WE HAVE IN 2006. HOW IS IT SO EASY TO MAKE THESE DIFFERENCES? HOW IS IT THE DEAL WAS SO EASY TO TURN AROUND? WE STEM FROM THINGS AT AN EARLY POINT. WE’RE NOT GOING TO CHANGE THOSE THINGS. A LOT OF THOSE THINGS WERE WONDERFUL AND VERY POWERFUL, BUT THEY ARE NOW DIGGING OUR GRAVE, AND WE CAN’T SEEM TO TURN THE CORNER ON THEM. THAT’S THE PROBLEM. >> ISN’T IT POSSIBLE THAT ONE OF OUR MAJOR MISTAKES WAS GIVING INDIVIDUAL RIGHTS TO CORPORATIONS, TO GIVE CORPORATIONS THE SAME RIGHTS AS THE INDIVIDUAL? >>

YEAH, THAT HAPPENED EARLY IN THE 20TH CENTURY. >> AND AT THAT POINT, THEN — >> THAT WAS A DISASTROUS MISTAKE, RIGHT. BUT THE THING IS THAT IT’S NOT AN ACCIDENT. WHEN I SAY MISTAKE, IT’S AMISTAKE, BUT NOT AN

YEAH, THAT HAPPENED EARLY IN THE 20TH CENTURY. >> AND AT THAT POINT, THEN — >> THAT WAS A DISASTROUS MISTAKE, RIGHT. BUT THE THING IS THAT IT’S NOT AN ACCIDENT. WHEN I SAY MISTAKE, IT’S A MISTAKE, BUT NOT AN ACCIDENT IN THE SENSE THAT THE AMERICAN ETIOLOGY IS ONE OF THE INDIVIDUAL COMES FIRST. EVEN IF THAT WERE TO APPLY TO A CORPORATION OR A CHURCH, THE INDIVIDUAL ALWAYS COMES FIRST. SO FINALLY, YOU GET KATRINA AND YOU GET THE PHILOSOPHY THAT BASICALLY ON THE BASIS OF OUR NOTION OF DEMOCRACY, WE CAN INVADE OTHER COUNTRIES AND REARRANGE THEIR GOVERNMENTS OR DO WHATEVER WE WANT, YOU KNOW. I MEAN, INDIVIDUALISM, I CAN’T THINK OF A SINGLE THING, WHETHER — PHILOSOPHY, WHETHER IT’S INDIVIDUALISM OR ANYTHING ELSE, WHEN TAKEN TO AN EXTREME, WINDS UP IN A GOOD PLACE. SO THERE ARE OBVIOUSLY VERY POSITIVE FEATURES ABOUT INDIVIDUALISM. TAKEN TO AN EXTREME, YOU’RE IN TROUBLE. WELL, I THINK WE’RE PROBABLY DONE. THANK YOU VERY MUCH FOR COMING. [APPLAUDING] >>

I’M GUESSING THAT NUMBER WILL INCREASE OVER TIME. SO AGAIN, GOING BACK TO THE CASE OF BISMARKS GERMANY, THERE WAS MORE PROTECTION IN 1971 FOR THOSE CITIZENS THAN WE HAVE IN 2006. HOW IS IT SO EASY TO MAKE THESE DIFFERENCES? HOW IS IT THE DEAL WAS SO EASY TO TURN AROUND? WE STEM FROM THINGS AT AN EARLY POINT. WE’RE NOT GOING TO CHANGE THOSE THINGS. A LOT OF THOSE THINGS WERE WONDERFUL AND VERY POWERFUL, BUT THEY ARE NOW DIGGING OUR GRAVE, AND WE CAN’T SEEM TO TURN THE CORNER ON THEM. THAT’S THE PROBLEM. >> ISN’T IT POSSIBLE THAT ONE OF OUR MAJOR MISTAKES WAS GIVING INDIVIDUAL RIGHTS TO CORPORATIONS, TO GIVE CORPORATIONS THE SAME RIGHTS AS THE INDIVIDUAL? >>

YEAH, THAT HAPPENED EARLY IN THE 20TH CENTURY. >> AND AT THAT POINT, THEN — >> THAT WAS A DISASTROUS MISTAKE, RIGHT. BUT THE THING IS THAT IT’S NOT AN ACCIDENT. WHEN I SAY MISTAKE, IT’S A MISTAKE, BUT NOT AN

ACCIDENT IN THE SENSE THAT THE AMERICAN ETIOLOGY IS ONE OF THE INDIVIDUAL COMES FIRST. EVEN IF THAT WERE TO APPLY TO A CORPORATION OR A CHURCH, THE INDIVIDUAL ALWAYS COMES FIRST. SO FINALLY, YOU GET KATRINA AND YOU GET THE PHILOSOPHY THAT BASICALLY ON THE BASIS OF OUR NOTION OF DEMOCRACY, WE CAN INVADE OTHER COUNTRIES AND REARRANGE THEIR GOVERNMENTS OR DO WHATEVER WE WANT, YOU KNOW. I MEAN, INDIVIDUALISM, I CAN’T THINK OF A SINGLE THING, WHETHER — PHILOSOPHY, WHETHER IT’S INDIVIDUALISM OR ANYTHING ELSE, WHEN TAKEN TO AN EXTREME, WINDS UP IN A GOOD PLACE. SO THERE ARE OBVIOUSLY VERY POSITIVE FEATURES ABOUT INDIVIDUALISM. TAKEN TO AN EXTREME, YOU’RE IN TROUBLE. WELL, I THINK WE’RE PROBABLY DONE. THANK YOU VERY MUCH FOR COMING. [APPLAUDING]
Morris Berman.. Visiting Professor Catholic University of America->Sociology

About homelessholocaust

I actually do not write most of these articles, I collect them here, for my personal useage, I find Some Other's enjoy them as well, which is a side effect of my Senility. As I am a Theosophist, and also study Vedanta Society of Northern California, so Your Visitation from the Akashic records to approve my feebile works gives me Great Hope! I am 68, years old, I will Come To You in another 30 or so years. You Reinforces my Belief that in my Sleep I visit The Akashic Records when I remember my dream's. I keep notes about 'Over There." the Colour of Daylight is Darker, but the Life is Brighter, property has no meaning, and it is homish. are the energetic records of all souls about their past lives, the present lives, and possible future lives. Each soul has its Akashic Records, like a series of books with each book representing one lifetime. The Hall (or Library) of the Akashic Records is where all souls’ Akashic Records are stored energetically. In other words, the information is stored in the Akashic field (also called zero point field). The Akashic Records, however, are not a dry compilation of events. They also contain our collective wisdom.
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