Martin EdenMartin Eden's Journal
That cultivation can come from within, or from deliberate manipulation by outside sources.
Individuals suffering psychological pain and fear are capable of becoming serial killers or mass murderers as their mental pathologies grow from early trauma and a lack of the sustaining human relationships we all need. Where love is absent, a person can cultivate hatred and turn it loose on others through horrific acts of violence.
John Lennon was onto something with "All you need is Love." We also need food, clothing, shelter, education, healthcare, etc., but it takes a special kind of inner strength and mental discipline (such as Rubin had) to keep your shit together in the absence of direct and sustained contact with human kindness and love.
It is a tragedy and a failure when children and people of all ages are abused or denied the nurturing all human beings need.
It is evil and destructive to society when ambitious politicians deliberately cultivate hatred pursuant to their own wealth, fame, and power. They know how to manipulate the insecurity, ignorance, and prejudice in their target audience by turning kernels of truth into crops of lies then placing the blame on "others" who are not like them. Add to that the unfettered access to high powered firearms designed for rapid killing.
Thusly we can at least partially understand the horrific plague of mass shootings in our country. Human psychology and motivation haven't really changed, but today's mass media and the internet have increasingly isoloated us from each other while multiplying the tools used by those who divide us against each other.
What is the solution? I don't subscribe to religion, but if we all made an effort on a daily basis to truly embrace what Jesus tried to impart to us we would have a chance to replace the cultivated hate with something better.
In order to get the love and kindness we all need, we have to freely give it.
That metaphorical tower is crumbling at its foundations, and its lone resident is beginning to realize it is in the process of crashing down.
Cheeto Jesus will not dwell quietly in the broken rubble of his giant yet fragile ego. He will rage, rage against the dying of the megalomaniacal image he constructed of himself.
In his malignancy and hatred he will lash out in nihilistic vengeance and take down with him, to the extent that he can, everyone and everything he blames for his own flaws and failures -- which he can never blame on himself.
But he largely will fail in his efforts at destruction, because the tower he built was being held up by the one thing he is rapidly losing -- real power.
He may for a while instigate a war within the Republican Party using the leverage of his brainwashed voting base, but the politicians who formerly kissed his orange ass will drop him like a rotting potato when fealty to The LOSER Guy no longer serves their interests.
Because that fealty was always transactional, by political creatures whose only principle is their own quest for power.
The pundits and politicians were calling them "cowards" but it takes a lot of courage to go into a foreign country, hijack a jetliner, and crash it into a building.
Pointing this out does not condone the terrorist act of murdering thousands of innocent men, women, and children. Nor does it lend any legitimacy to the warped poisonous ideology that misled these men into sacrificing their lives for a cause in which they obviously passionately believed.
The intelligent way to counter that poisonous ideology is not with simple minded mischaraterizations but with a deep dive into the history and current circumstances which drive human beings to commit such atrocities.
To understand them is not to justify their actions. On the contrary, the key to defeating an enemy is to understand his motivations and the context which gave rise to the poisonous ideoligy which has such profound influence not just on an organized terrorist group but on a significant swath of the population.
In our effort to better understand the situation which brought mass murder to our shores, we must not avert our eyes from our own actions overseas. An intelligent foreign policy that serves our best interests and national security requires regular reassessment of our past mistakes, current associations, and future geostrategic considerations -- while keeping in mind our highest ideals and how the United States of America can strive towards being that shining city on the hill that inspires others around the world to follow our lead.
I joined DU in 2002 while GW Bush and the PNAC neocons were manipulating the American people through a systematic campaign of misinformation into supporting an invasion of Iraq which was part of their written agenda before the 9/11 attacks.
We have seen the consequences of their misguided attempt to remake that troubled region by military force. The long occupation of Afhanistan and the brutal war in Iraq demonstrated the limits of American power, badly tarnished our image in the eyes of the world, cost us dearly in blood and treasure while inflicting untold suffering and death on the people who live there, and metastasized the cancerous ideology that gave rise to ISIS.
In our names the administration of GW Bush committed war crimes in a country that had nothing to do with the 9/11 attacks. He, his vice president, and others belong in prison instead of leading lives of wealth and privilege.
I find it ironic that the daughter of Dick Cheney is now making a stand now to save our own democracy, but that is another matter and I've rambled on long enough this morning.
...was not that I sometimes disagree with him or that he's always a smug narcissist, but that he's often woefully unprepared to counter the BS spewed by some of the vile rightwingers he invites on his show.
Within the last year or so he had Steve Bannon on for his opening guest. Maher's questions were intended as "gotcha" traps, but Bannon's responses were rapid fire narratives that cleverly dodged the original question with the kind of seemingly valid points which all too often fool the uninformed.
Maher was overwhelmed and unprepared to counter the barrage of lies so he'd make an offhand remark, say OK, and move on to the next question only to get owned again by an evil propagandist who is clearly much smarter than him.
If I was Elvis Presley I would have shot the television.
I still see almost every show because my wife finds it interesting and entertaining compared to other such fare and we have some good conversations of our own about the content, but if it was up to me I'd flip the channel or read a book.
I've had enough of Bill Maher and pretty much can't stand him anymore, even if he is occasionally spot on or funny with his New Rules.
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