The Houses of Dead and Crooked Souls

“A house constitutes a body of images that give mankind proofs or illusions of stability.”      – Gaston Bachelard, The Poetics of Space

There is a vast and growing gulf between the world’s rich and poor.  An obscene gulf. If we can read houses, they will confirm this.  They offer a visible lesson in social class.

Houses stand before us like books on a shelf waiting to be read, and when the books are missing, as they are for a vast and growing multitude of the homeless exiled wandering ones and those imprisoned, their absence serves to indict the mansion-dwelling wealthy and to a lesser extent those whose homes serve to shield them from the truth of the ill-begotten gains of the wealthy elites who create the world’s suffering through their avarice, lies, and war making.

Many regular people want to say with Edmund in Eugene O’Neill’s play, Long Day’s Journey into Night:

The fog is where I wanted to be. Halfway down the path you can’t see this house. You’d never know it was here. Or any of the other places down the avenue. I couldn’t see but a few feet ahead. I didn’t meet a soul. Everything looked and sounded unreal. Nothing was what it is.That’s what I wanted – to be alone with myself in another world where truth is untrue and life can hide from itself….Who wants to see life as it is, if they can help it?

Yet the rich don’t hide or give a damn. They flaunt their houses.  They know they are crooks and creators of illusions.  Their nihilism is revealed in their conspicuous consumption and their predatory behavior; they want everyone else to see it too.  So they rub it in their faces.  Their wealth is built on the blood and suffering of millions around the world, but this is often hidden knowledge.

For many regular people prefer the fog to the harsh truth.  It shields them from intense anger and the realization that the wealthy elites who run the world and control the media lie to them about everything and consider them beneath contempt.  That would demand a response commensurate with the propaganda – rebellion.  It would impose the moral demand to look squarely at the houses of death with their tiny cells in which the wealthy elites and their henchmen imprison and torture truth tellers like Julian Assange, an innocent man in a living hell; to make connections between wealth and power and the obscene flaunting of the rich elite’s sybaritic lifestyles in houses where every spacious room testifies to their moral depravity.

The recent news of Barack Obama’s vile selfie birthday celebration for his celebrity “friends” at his 29-acre estate and mansion (he has another eight-million-dollar mansion in Washington, D. C.) on Martha’s Vineyard is an egregious recent case in point.  If he thinks this nauseating display is proof of his stability and strength – which obviously he does – then he is a deluded fool.  But those who carry water for the military-intelligence-media complex are amply rewarded and want to tell the world that this is so.  It’s essential for the Show.  It must be conspicuous so the plebians learn their lesson.

Obama’s Vineyard mansion stands as an outward sign of his inner disgrace, his soullessness.

Trump’s golden towers and his never-ending self-promotion or the multiple million-dollar mansions of high-tech, sports, and Hollywood’s superstars send the same message.

Take Bill Gates’ sixty-three-million-dollar mansion, Xanadu, named after William Randolph Hearst’s estate in Citizen Kane, that took seven years to build.

Take the house up the hill from where I live in an erstwhile working-class town that sold for one million plus and now is being expanded to double its size with a massive swimming pool that leaves no grass uncovered. Every week, three black window-tinted SUVs arrive with New Jersey plates to join two white expensive sedans to oversee the progress in this small western Massachusetts town where McMansions rise throughout the hills faster than summer’s weeds.

Take the blue dolomite stone Searles Castle with its 60 acres, 40 rooms, and “dungeon” basement down the hill on Main St. that was recently bought by a NYC artist who also owns seven grand estates around the country that he showcases as examples of his fine artistic taste.  “All these houses have endless things to do — it’s just mind-boggling,” he has said. The artist, Hunt Slonem, calls himself a “glamorizer,” and his “exotica” paintings, inspired by Andy Warhol’s repetition of soup cans and Marilyn Monroe, hang in galleries, museums, cruise ships, and the houses of film celebrities.  Like his showcase houses, his exotica must have endless things to do.

What would Vincent van Gogh say?  Perhaps what he wrote to his brother Theo: that the greatest people in painting and literature “have always worked against the grain” and in sympathy with the poor and oppressed.  That might seem “mind-boggling” to Slonem.

Such ostentatious displays of wealth and power clearly reveal the delusions of the elites, as if there are no spiritual consequences for living so.  Even if they read Tolstoy’s cautionary tale about greed, How Much Land Does A Man Need?, it is doubtful that its truth would register.  Like Tolstoy’s protagonist Pahόm, they never have enough.  But like Pahόm, the Devil has them in his grip, and like him, they will get their just rewards, a small room, a bit of land to imprison them forever.

His servant picked up the spade and dug a grave long enough for Pahóm to lie in, and buried him in it. Six feet from his head to his heels was all he needed.

Where does the money for all these estates, not just Slonem’s, come from? Who wants to ask?

Getting to the roots of wealth involves a little digging.  Slonem’s castle was originally commissioned in the late 1800s by Mark Hopkins for his wife.  Hopkins was one of the founders of the Central Pacific Railroad, which was built by Irish and Chinese immigrants.  Labor history is quite illuminating on the ways immigrants have always been treated, in this case “the dregs of Asia” and the Irish dogs.  Interestingly enough, the great black scholar and radical, W. E. B. Du Bois, a town native, worked at the castle’s construction site as a young man.  No doubt it informed his future work against racism, capitalism, and economic exploitation.

Wealthy urbanites flooded this area after September 11, 2001, and now, in their terror of disease and death, they have bought every house they could find.  Their cash-filled pockets overflow with blood-money and few ask why. To suggest that massive wealth is almost always ill-begotten is anathema.  But innocence wears many masks, and the Show demands washed hands and no questions asked.

It is rare that one becomes super-wealthy in an honest and ethical way.  The ways the rich get money almost without exception lead downward, to paraphrase Thoreau from his essay, “Life Without Principle.”

Since the corona crisis began, investment firms such as the Blackstone Group have been gobbling up vast numbers of houses across the United States as their prices have gone through the roof.  The lockdowns – an appropriate prison term – have set millions of regular people back on their heels as the wealthiest have gotten exponentially wealthier. Poverty and starvation have increased around the world.  This is not an accident.  Despair and depression are widespread.

There is a taboo in life in general and in journalism: Do not ask where people’s money comes from.  Thoreau was so advised long ago:

Do not ask how your bread is buttered; it will make you sick…

But the super-wealthy do not get sick.  They are sick.  For they revel in their depravity and push it in the faces of regular people, many who envy them and wish to become super-rich and powerful themselves.  Of course there are the blue bloods whose method is understatement, but it takes many decades to enter their theater of deception.  In many ways, these people are worse, for their personae have been crafted over decades of play-acting and public relations so their images are laundered to smell fresh and benevolent.  They often wear the mask of philanthropy, while the history of their wealth lies shrouded in an amnestic fog.

Yet soul murder includes suicide, and while the old and new moneyed ones smoothly justify their oppression of the vast majority, many regular people kill the best in themselves by envying the rich.

Years ago, I discovered some documents that showed that one of this country’s most famous philosophers, known for his lofty moral pronouncements, owned a lot of stock in companies that were doing evil things – war making, poisoning and killings huge numbers with chemicals, etc.  But his image was one of Mr. Clean, Mr. Good Guy. I suspect this is typical and that there are many such secrets in the basements and attics of the rich.

But let us also ask where the writers and presenters of the mainstream and alternative media get their money.  Although “to follow the money” is a truism, few do.  If we do, we will learn that money talks and those who take it toe the line, nor do they live in shacks by the side of the road or rent like so many others.  They invest with Black Rock and their ilk and have money managers who can increase their wealth while shielding them from the ways that money is made on the backs of the poor and working people.  And they lie about people like Assange, Daniel Hale, Reality Winner, Craig Murray, et al., all imprisoned for daring to reveal the depredations of the power elites, the violence at the heart of predatory capitalism.

Yes, houses speak.  But few ever speak of where their money comes from.  Those that are on the take – which has multiple meanings – always plead innocent.  Yes, I can hear you say that I am being too harsh; that there are exceptions.  That is obvious.  So let’s skip the exceptions and focus on the general principle. There is a Buddhist principle that right livelihood is a core ethic in earning money.  Jesus had another way of putting it but was of course in agreement, as were so many others whom people hold in highest esteem.

Thoreau wrote: “If you are acquainted with the principle, what do you care for a myriad instances and applications.”

The truth is that for most people, work, if they can find it, is drudgery and hard, a matter of survival. The late great Studs Terkel called it hell and rightly said that most jobs are not big enough for people because they crush the soul, they lack meaning.  And behind all ledgers of great wealth lie crushed souls.  This reality is so obvious and goes by many names, including class warfare, that further commentary would be redundant.

A few years ago, I visited Mark Twain’s house in Hartford, Connecticut.  It is advertised as “a house with a heart and a soul.”  It is not a house but a mansion, and it was an ostentatious display in Twain’s time. Similar or worse than Obama’s mansion on Martha’s Vineyard today.  It has no soul or heart.  It was built with Twain’s wife’s family money.  Her father was an oil and coal tycoon from upstate New York.  Twain reveled in opulent respectability.  He lived the life of a Gilded Age tycoon, an American magnate. It is not a pretty story, but the Twain myth says otherwise.  Not that he catered to popular tastes to please the crowd and his domineering wife and that he lived in luxury, but that he was a radical critic of the establishment.  This is false.  For he withheld for the most part the publication of his withering take on American imperialism until after his death.  He committed soul murder.  But his mansion impressed his neighbors and his humor distracted from his luxurious lifestyle.  His house still stands as a cautionary tale for those who will read it.

Baudelaire once said that in palaces “there is no place for intimacy.”  This is no doubt why in people’s dreams small, simple houses with a light in the window loom large.  Bachelard says, “When we are lost in darkness and see a distant glimmer of light, who does not dream of a thatched cottage or, to go more deeply still into legend, of a hermit’s hut.”  For here man and God meet in solitude; here human intimacy is possible.  “The hut can receive none of the riches ‘of this world.’  It possesses the felicity of intense poverty; indeed, it is one of the glories of poverty; as destitution increases, it gives access to absolute refuge.”

He is not espousing actual poverty, but the oneiric depths of true desire, the dreams of hope, reconciliation, and simple living that run counter to the amassing of wealth to prove one’s power and majesty. A humble house of truth, not a mansion of lies. This, to borrow the title of William Goyen’s novel, is “the house of breath” where the spirit can live and pseudo-stability gives way to faith, for insecurity is the essence of life.

There is such a hermit’s hut where the light shines.  It is the tiny cell in Belmarsh Prison where Julian Assange hangs onto his life by a thread.  His witness for truth sends an inspiring message to all those lost in the world’s woods to look to his fate and not turn away.  To follow to their sources the money that greases the palms of all the so-called journalists and politicians who want him dead or imprisoned for life, who tell their endless lies, not just about him, but about everything.

The house of propaganda is built on unanimity.  When one person says no, the foundation starts to crumble.  The houses of the rich dead and crooked souls, erected to project the stability of their bloody illusions, start to crumble into sand when people dissent one by one.

Soon the fog lifts and there is no hiding any more.  At the end of the path, you can see the vultures circling overhead as their prey go running out of their mansions in terror.

Sing Hallelujah!








24 thoughts on “The Houses of Dead and Crooked Souls”

  1. Something to think about. . . .

    When I was teenager in high school, one summer babysat Saturday nights for a neighbor down the road, he’d bought some land from my parent’s farm.

    There was a dive in town at the time, a bar and function room. This man*+ back in 1970s dressed up as a woman and his Filipino wife, a dozen years his junior, and they performed there — what I don’t know.

    He hid the fact he was cross dressing for these acts, and in any event, I did not care one way or the other.

    At the time, he was a “civilian” who traveled each morning during workweek to Ft. Devens. His job, teach military men how to efficiently murder, as near as I could gather, and this man, was military intelligence or along those lines, and earlier in his career, stationed in Philippines.

    He spoke of his job as defeating communism there, which meant murdering many Philippines.

    This man had a large collection of books on JFK assassination at his home, and a first class stereo system.

    On Saturday evenings, their baby asleep, I’d sit and read them and listen to BSO at Tanglewood on radio.

    One of the books described how the so-called “tape” of that motorcade in Dallas circa Nov. 1963 — that it was actually created, and was not actual footage of what happened that day.

    Of note: he once told me that “rogue elements” in CIA murdered and/or orchestrated the entire JFK matter and his death etc. He said it was not “the CIA” that did it rather rogue elements. Since Truman himself, shortly after assassination, said the CIA was out of control and creating it was his biggest mistake, the logical inference is CIA was then a rogue organization, you get the gist.

    [footnote *+ This man would murder his wife in late 1970s; sentenced to 18 months in prison; served less than six months; he passed away couple years ago]

    On the day of 911, by early that afternoon it was obvious to me that was an inside job, as was JFK matter.

    And it became plausible to me no passenger flights hit any towers; rather, drones were involved.

    Also, clearly, at low altitude passenger 767s cannot be and don’t have power to travel at those reported speeds of more than 500 mph. And the wings would have snapped off upon impact, debris would have fallen to ground, etc.

    And so extremely advanced explosives created those holes in WTC, made to look like wings had created the penetration and the like.

    In other words: like the images performed on the JFK motorcade, ditto the footage played over and over again on passenger airlines hitting WTC: all a mirage, albeit quite sophisticated.

    This level of hyper-deceit and image and narrative deceit even more sophisticated, vis-a-vis Operation Corona-9-1-1.

    Many including US journalist Alex Berenson smell a rat, obviously; though few others try and discover what is actually happening now and what came to be, to get where we are now.

    I’ll use Berenson as metaphor for all those pushing the Wuhan Lab narrative.

    What they are stuck in is the same mud those watching over and over again the JFK motorcade “tape” and the 911 commercial airlines hitting WTC fantasy tapes: they are stuck in the mud but have yet to figure out in any even basic way yet, at this time, the deceptions and hyper-deceit of Corono-9-1-1.

    And in a way, worse: they focus on personalities such as that very sick man named Fauci.

    CIA propaganda tends to focus on an individual and vilify him. . . and my entire life I’ve heard these propagandists refer to Sadaam Hussein as Hitler, Idi Amin, the Taleban, Jim Jones, some accused this towards Trump. . . .the “communist” viet cong, Bashar Asad, Gadaffi, Nasser, etc. ad nauseum.

    Berenson falls into this mud with focus on Fauci, the man instead of . . . . this a sophisticated military operation, in service of western empire, neo imperialism, and among its apparent goals, final pacification of American Nation, to extent USA can be called thus.

    In other words: “Fauci is following orders” — which is not to say in his decades heading NIAID, he has not been a criminal and perhaps a war criminal.

    A trite example, though not trite at all in its consequences: Fauci had correctly stated masks do zero to protect; then changed story, as this narrative is part of pacification goal of westernism’s oligarchs against USA folks, at this time.

    Berenson helped expose on big media many thousands now dead after covid shot: but the real moral of this story is that this is of no consequence — in that this criminal operation pushing these shots and the coercion only has increased since this particular fact become wider and wider known.

    Think about that.

    And all the many brave and actual scientists and MDs opposing this mayhem. . . have not made a dent.

    And they have been censored and all that. . . and the criminal operation instead is speeding up.

    Gov. Baker, he has lost his mind as well. He had been opposed to all of this vax mandates and all. . . and now he is totally on board and now getting kisses as it were from AG Healey.

    And many unions now all in on mandatory vax. And ACLU inverting its mission to now cover for this obscene violation of civil rights. Either Roe v Wade means total sanctity of ones body, or it does not, irrespective of one’s own view on abortion. If Roe v Wade is the law of the land; then vax mandates are direct violation of that law of the land, and all this implies. Put another way: as a practical matter, since Roe v Wade in terms of bodily autonomy viz. the covid shots is de-facto not the law of the land, now what?

    As a footnote: what the MDs and Scientists possess in terms of knowledge and knowing that this is all the antithesis of public health measures. . . for all their medical and virological and infectious disease knowledge, they lack epistemology . . . totally lack this, in context of how to resist.

    This is not what they were trained in, and yet, that class, being arrogant as they inevitably become. . . well, this arrogance as the saying goes: “Is not helpful.”

    In a fundamental way, they cannot realize, apparently, that the mass propangandized suffer now from clinical neurosis, and that presenting actual scientific facts makes no difference: it may be changing a few minds, but for the most part, actual facts and their proliferation are not making much of a dent, either.

    And this is very essence as well: of Stockholm Syndrome.

    It is painful to observe this.

    A year and a half ago, March 2020, I told a very very very well educated acquaintance what was being done in the name of public health would lead to insurrections, protests, etc. She told me I’m cracked in the head. [she also told me last week that the shots don’t work and in same sentence I should get covid shot, and had recently said those that don’t get the shots “are stupid.”]

    So. . . protests began last spring, 2020: And that began, and then out of no where, BLM and Antifa were deployed to distort and emasculate this budding revolt against the corona911 criminal operation.

    And the success of this FBI/CIA’deployment’: culminated, in a sense, in the Jan. 6 — and its use, now, as a means to further warn anyone who may want to challenge the criminal narratives in place to prevent resistance to these ongoing crimes against humanity.

    And of course George Floyd. As in case of Napoleon — if wasn’t there, he would have been created — remember that cute little historical thing we all learned?

    This is not to in any way dismiss police brutality.

    It is to say that Floyd was deployed for a specific purpose and Jan. 6 in a way is logical outcome; all to interrupt insurrection against the public health so called. . . to interrupt the coming tyranny that has, like the Poltergeist, arrived in full bloom.

    Our individual and collective sanity is a function of trying our best to place all of what is happening in some context, however rudimentary and incomplete. . . that is at least in some ways in line with what is actually going on.

    On this, Berenson fails, but at least he is trying.

    And we are all failing, in fact.

    The MDs and scientists are failing, for some of reasons outline briefly above.

    Decades ago I used to say to myself we were heading back to the stone age because of what we as a society are doing, as this is not only not sustainable, it is antithetical to building a society, a civilization, which we now see is being destroyed in plain sight, wantonly, recklessly destroyed.

    The predators that roam the world, our actual western Lords and Masters, they have a plan. . . . and yet, also being products of western civilization, it is not a plan that aligns with the human spirit.

    And therefore not sustainable. But then, that is not of concern to anyone with billions of dollars, or even any one with say at least $50 million — these ones, the very rich, essentially lose their ability to perceive they also belong to human species.

    And great misery and terror is foisted on rest of us, and most of the rest of us cannot for a potpourri of reasons [briefly discussed above] cannot look down the barrel of the gun, number one, and number two, even if they did, now so totally “brain-fucked” they say black is white, and so on and so forth.

    For these predators operate as if this criminal operation is ‘Humanitarian Intervention’ – along lines of HI in Syria, Iraq, Libya, etc.


    Humanitarian Interventionism and Moral Mazes

    I think it’s natural to feel alienation at the individual level given anomie at social and cultural and civilizational and societal place. [in other words: this is not to be suppressed]

    Also, natural to seek courage to imagine and divine in ones consciousness what the above phenomena are, portend, is bringing and its historicity.

    Every social condition present opportunities to decipher what is happening and tools to transcend the here and now, putting this into perspective.

    Only with perspective, a frame of reference, a theory or theories, is concrete reality and can concrete reality begin to be conceptualized. [otherwise we suffer bondage of fragmentation Nietzsche describe, saying: I have forgotten why I even began. . . .]

    And only with facts, social and otherwise, can a frame of reference begin to be constructed and perfected in time.

    An essential tool in this work is ability to name things exactly as possible.

    Myriad and sundry processes: [ — poignantly in this past generation to now — ] obscured, blurred, made at best opaque this essential task.

    Did any object, for example, when “Social Media” — nomenclature, used: as a “descriptive” of things like Facebook, Twitter, etc.?

    Even cigarette manufacturers were not so craven as to market their paper and tobacco sticks Social Fire.

    The erroneous, the false appending of social onto remote, electronic — and totally NONSOCIAL — means of communications occurred.

    Among the consequences: any critique of these instruments immensely hampered by using the label social media within any critique, which, since social is universally a necessity to human survival, rendered the critique dead on arrival.

    A critique of “remote media” is obviously straightforward conceptually; a critique of “social media” on its face, apostasy.

    Whatever else Dostoevsky’s The Possessed means to folk, it is a tale of alienation and anomie.

    He possessed courage to call a spade a spade.

    Another way to approach understanding the lockdowns associated with this latest version of “Humanitarian Interventionism” is obvious.

    We are led to believe Elites are knowledgeable and perhaps even wise, but definitely knowledgable.

    What is this based on and who are they and is this assumption valid, and what are consequences if this assumption is in error?

    Few and scant research is available to ascertain with facts this small group, perhaps no more than 10,000 at most in the west, the Moral Mazes that is actually their world.

    It is safe to say they “breathe money” as it were.

    Also, to say they can never accumulate enough of it.

    And, that “Humanitarian Interventions”, as they have called them [especially so this past generation], from the perspective of concrete reality, have been undertaken to: increase their accumulation of capital.]

    Even without a lot of facts about these 10K max number of western elites, it is plausible to conclude with more than a little assurance the following:

    They breathe money, they create humanitarian interventions to accumulate more of it.

    And lockdowns among their latest HI; and now covid shots, boosters, and mandatory shots, “vax Passports” and IDs and the like, etc.

    “An FDA that colludes in illegally mandating experimental, poorly effective and dangerous vaccines while suppressing real treatments is not public health, but rather Murder, Incorporated.” Meryl Nass MD, Aug. 25, 2021

    A note on another notorious HI is explicated somewhat as follows, by sociologist James Petras, published in Cairo by AL-AHRAM, the 7-13 April 2011 issue, number 1042:

    —–[[Obama, the most public face of supposed humanitarian armed intervention in Africa, will recite bigger and more grotesque lies, as Libyan villagers and townspeople fall victims to his imperial juggernaut.

    Washington’s first black chief executive will earn history’s infamy as the US President responsible for the death of hundreds of black Libyans and mass expulsion of thousands of sub- Saharan African workers employed under the current regime.

    No doubt, Anglo-American progressives and leftists will continue to debate the pros and cons of this intervention, following in the footsteps of their predecessors, the French Socialists and US New Dealers from the 1930s.

    Hitler and Mussolini’s bombing of the Spanish republic on behalf of General Franco’s rebel forces, fighting under the banner of “Family, Church and Civilization”, can be considered a prototype for Obama’s humanitarian intervention on behalf of the Libyan rebels.]]—–

    At this point, we can’t be sure of the public face and/or faces of the lockdowns’ Humanitarian Interventionists.

    Much less the faces behind the masks, though speculation on it in some circles run rampant.

    We can be sure, however, this is HI operation.

    We can be sure there are public faces to be identified, sooner or later, with accuracy.

    We can be sure faces behind the masks exist.

    And from this we can be sure strategies can or could take root in the public interest, as opposed to the private interest of the purveyors of this “humanitarian intervention”.

    And Remember the words of the great US novelist, Katherine Anne Porter:

    [It is just ten years since this collection of short stories first appeared.

    They are literally first fruits, for they were written and published in order of their present arrangement in this volume, which contains the first story I ever finished.

    Looking at them again, it is possible still to say that I do not repent of them; if they were not yet written, I should have to write them still.

    They were done with intention and in firm faith, though I had no plan for their future and no notion of what their meaning might be to such readers as they would find. To any speculations from interested sources as to why there were not more of them, I can answer simply and truthfully that I was not one of those who could flourish in the conditions of the past two decades.

    They are fragments of a much larger plan which I am still engaged in carrying out, and they are what I was then able to achieve in the way of order and form and statement in a period of grotesque dislocations in a whole society when the world was heaving in the sickness of a millennial change. They were first published by what seems still merely a lucky accident, and their survival through this crowded and slowly darkening decade is the sort of fate no one, least of all myself, could be expected to predict or even to hope for.

    We none of us flourished in those times, artists or not, for art, like the human life of which it is the truest voice, thrives best by daylight in a green and growing world.

    For myself, and I was not alone, all the conscious and recollected years of my life have been lived to this day under the heavy threat of world catastrophe, and most of the energies of my mind and spirit have been spent in the effort to grasp the meaning of those threats, to trace them to their sources and to understand the logic of this majestic and terrible failure of the life of man in the Western world.

    In the face of such shape and weight of present misfortune, the voice of the individual artist may seem perhaps of no more consequence than the whirring of a cricket in the grass; but the arts do live continuously, and they live literally by faith; their names and their shapes and their uses and their basic meanings survive unchanged in all that matters through times of interruption, diminishment, neglect; they outlive governments and creeds and the societies, even the very civilizations that produced them.

    They cannot be destroyed altogether because they represent the substance of faith and the only reality. They are what we find again when the ruins are cleared away. And even the smallest and most incomplete offering at this time can be a proud act in defense of that faith.

    June 21, 1940]


    “Tyranny is a habit which may be developed until at last it becomes a disease. I declare that the noblest nature can become so hardened and bestial that nothing distinguishes it from that of a wild animal. Blood and power intoxicate; they help to develop callousness and debauchery. The mind then becomes capable of the most abnormal cruelty, which it regards pleasure; the man and the citizen are swallowed up in the tyrant; and the return to human dignity, repentance, moral resurrection, becomes almost impossible.” ― Fyodor Dostoyevsky, The House of the Dead

    1. Thank you Jim,….I never believed any of the ‘stories’, perhaps my life’s experiences enables me to ‘tune’ into a lie and without needing a great deal of information to support my intuit or feeling. I am unable to prove or disprove anything for someone else’s convenience, however. They will need to find out first hand, which is the best way to learn.
      I just read this very recently…”Humans mistakenly believing their bodies and minds to be separate from the universe, separate from the swirling sea of life on this planet, constructing psychological me-characters to symbolize the plight of each human organism and then using believed thoughts to try and ensure the safety and security of that fictional character.” Appears to be a very narrow, theory from indoctrination which I do not care to hear about from academic physicists concerning how ‘we’ function presently and have been for a very long time. They’ll screw it up! Of course, I personally cannot explain the interrelationships of all things just as I cannot explain how I developed in and came from a womb and what happened in relationship to this process due to other influences that don’t get much press time.

  2. Some time ago, I saw Obama in a video telling an African audience that if everyone drives a big car and has air conditioning in their house that the oceans will boil away. Even in the context of climate alarmism, this was obvious hyperbole.

    But the people who believe that CO2 is a pollutant and that at 400 parts per million in the atmosphere, it presents a threat to the environment, think that sea levels are bound to rise, destroying ocean front property around the world.

    So, it was on its face surprising that Obama bought a property on the island of Martha’s Vineyard, where it would not take much of a rise in sea level to destroy the value of the property. Though he is far wealthier than one might think a youngish politician who rose rapidly through congress and the ranks of the party to become president might be, he is not wealthy enough to throw away several million dollars on a soon to be underwater and unsalable property.

    Like his pal Al Gore, who reportedly also strangely owns beachfront property, he does not believe his own propaganda. This shows some sense, if not morality or ethics. If I believed the propaganda, I would be selling any low lying property near the sea for whatever I could get, and consider myself lucky if I could find a sucker to take it. That is the advantage of being the propagandist and not the propagandized. You know for sure that what you are peddling is BS. And in this case, you might pick up some prime property at a bargain price.

    If he and his party were not supporting masking and distancing and all the other ineffectual and unnecessary measures with which the people are supposed to comply, the recent selfie blast would not have seemed so egregious. It would still be obscene in the context of the amount of death and misery the man caused around the world, but less obviously so to those in the US who are shielded from images of the fruit of US outrages in foreign lands by the lapdog media.

    But if nothing else it tells us that, once again, the peddlers of official narrative know better than to fall for such nonsense themselves.

    Of course, in the interest of the public morality play, there must be reports of widespread illness following the party. But Obama is a member of the big club, and any negative publicity will slide right off.

    Obviously, guys like him and Gates fall into the category of “too rich to be honest” that Ed is talking about, Obama more for his relative wealth in the context of his image as a “public servant” and Gates more for the outrageous size of his fortune and the power he wields because of it.

    The problem we have, though, is where to draw the line between genuine success via hard work and ingenuity, and the sort of wealth produced by sociopathy and disregard for others. There is no number which will work as a dividing line. There are probably those who bring morality to business who have more money than Obama.

    To me, and I don’t recall if I have brought it up here before, one thing which causes these issues is the concept of “corporation”. By removing the responsibility for a companies actions from its owners, it enables wealth accumulation based on criminal action.

    But as Ed intimates, the blame to some extent falls on all of us who participate in society. Corruption moves by increments, small, uninteresting changes we don’t notice, being absorbed in getting ahead as we are. Whatever charged emotion prompted the American Revolution, it has long worn off, and the vast majority are unaware that we now live in a different, and much worse, country than we grew up in. Bread and circuses have won the day once more.

    1. Obama represents a brand of neoliberal hubristic “character”. I don’t see him as representing much of anything regarding the veracity of climate change, CO2 cause of sea level rising, etc. Must say the last 18 months or so has shed a harsh light on our “biological science” smoke and mirrors via computer simulations. To what extent this is true of climate change has been a major contention. Profit corrupts.

      Our politicians come from the basic character of what Morris Berman called in his “Why America Failed”, a nation of “hustlers”.

      1. Thank you for your reply, Art. I only focus on Obama here because he figures in Ed’s piece, and the party Ed talks about happened on his Martha’s Vineyard property he purchased since the end of his presidency. His administration, and he himself, as the chosen one of the establishment, did push the climate alarmism narrative and joined the Paris Climate Accord. If he believed the narrative he represented, he would not have purchased the house. It would have been a house somewhere the predicted sea level rise would not affect.

        The climate change narrative would not be high on my list of priorities right now, the personal medical decisions that people must make in the face of building public pressure being paramount, except that the WEF and others pushing the “Great Reset” will be using, it appears, the climate change narrative to bolster the wide use of lockdowns in the interest of reducing “emissions”.

        Some insight, if I recall correctly, can be found by reading the website the UN has for its Agenda 2050, which relates to transportation. They envision a world where “regular” people are restricted to living in high density smart cities connected by limited corridors, with the bulk of the US countryside being characterized as “wildlands”, off-limits for residency and probably to most of us for any purpose.

        Technology is central to this, as no doubt they will have self-driving cars and public transportation which will only allow you to go to places you are authorized to be. Travel in general, as we see now coming into focus, will be discouraged. The medical concept that meeting people you don’t know is dangerous and the environmental concept that any use of energy must be strictly regulated both play into this.

        As you mention, we have had the corruption of medical science shoved in our faces for the last 18 months, but what is happening there is the same as in other facets of science which may be perverted to serve the interests of those who feel entitled and capable of planning the world we live in.

        Very highly placed and expert individuals, such as former editors of the New England Journal of Medicine have stated that it is no longer possibly to rely on peer reviewed studies to know what is true in science. The peer review process is subject to cronyism and big money influence, and most studies produced cannot be replicated.

        Anytime a political entity speaks in the name of science, there is a political agenda involved. Many people are aware that industry often produces scientific studies which support their operations, but they seem to think that the science done in universities or sponsored by government are “pure science” with no particular agenda. Therefore, you can just choose the studies not coming from industry to trust.

        But the great foundations originally created, I believe, to avoid the federal income tax, while allowing their namesakes to appear as philanthropists, also allow them to grant money to public institutions and to place conditions on that money and to insert their hand chosen people in positions to influence the institutions. There is very little they have not gotten their fingers into – education, science, medicine, government, movements. So unless you know where an organization gets its funding, you cannot determine what biases might be involved in the “science” they present.

        Most people are enthralled by what is on their TV characterized as news, and it is very difficult to get them to doubt the official narratives. They are skeptical of anything which disagrees with the government/media story.

        I have found that one comes much closer to the truth if a healthy skepticism is applied to what the government and the powerful tell us, regardless of how often and how uniformly they say it. It would typically be better to believe the opposite of what they say or latch onto even the most unlikely conspiracy theory than to accept anything the consensus of the media tells us on anything important or controversial.

        Of course, believing just anything can get you into trouble as well. The ideal would be to apply critical thinking to everything you believe. Why do you believe it? It is as important to know that as to have the right idea.

  3. Because Ed and I have sharply divergent views on the issue of the pandemic (and ONLY the pandemic), and because Ed is gracious enough to encourage me and others to express our (diminishing) freedom of speech on his blog–even when, especially when, it challenges his own positions–I’ll paste in a comment I made this morning on Bill Mitchell’s MMT blog. The comment was made in response to a lengthy one by another reader, a comment well worth reading along with Bill’s voluminous posts made as both a Marxist and a founder of MMT. “There is little to add to Ikonoclast’s penetrating, panoramic comment. When I first became aware of the new pandemic, I immediately pulled up Tracy Chapman’s ‘Talkin’ ‘Bout a Revolution’ and let it rip. Since the days of Marx, would-be revolutionaries, desirous of bringing down capitalism, have put their hopes in a proletarian uprising, only to see those hopes evaporate and grow dimmer by the year. So where would you put your money right now (assuming you’re of the revolutionary persuasion): on the deconstruction of neoliberal capitalism by a militant coming together of the workers of the world, OR on a constantly-mutating virus, allowed to run rampant among the billions of the poor, a virus which could easily and repeatedly freeze in its tracks the entire global economy?”

  4. Edward, you said, “The lockdowns – an appropriate prison term” This reminded me of an announcement I recently read about a prison protest in Washington state. “WHY WE ARE PROTESTING”
    “Washington State is letting men into women’s prisons. One man, convicted of multiple sex crimes, was transferred to Washington Corrections Center for Women (WCCW), where he immediately raped a female prisoner.”
    One could say that long before this current program we’ve all been imprisoned; from the Atlantic to the Pacific.

  5. I appreciate tremendously the fact that you inspire questioning, considerably more than answering.
    The morality of wealth, or wealth inequality, leads directly to the questioning of “money” as the dominating measure of wealth. From there we might progress to a study of the concept of “PRIVILEGE”. – Is it morally acceptable to have “chosen people”?

    1. Good morning Tom…, you said; “PRIVILEGE”. – Is it morally acceptable to have “chose people”?
      If money simply separates haves from have nots…, power v.s. none, bosses v.s. slaves and so forth; and I think this is all it has been about for a long time…, can we imagine true cooperation between humans; no leaders, no followers; ‘WE’, no monetary systems?
      There’s always the question concerning trade, what measurement of fairness, equality of trading goods or services. If I need a hammer and you need a bicycle tire, if we were sane, would we argue or even speak about the equality of the trade. Would equality, privilege even be part of our vocabulary. My hammer is worth more than your bicycle tire so…blah, blah. NO…I think if we were coherent humans and functioning from NON-man-made laws that are based on inequality, we could think at the moment and perhaps the notion inequality, man-manufactured inequality would not exist. Chosen people? Who did the choosing? If one is truly functioning more widely aware, I don’t think this person would attempt to exploit, control, define matters for the more vulnerable individuals. I was once told a story about an indigenous tribe…, 2 men went fishing, one man caught a fish, the other did not. The man who caught the fish, cut the fish in ‘half’ and gave half to the other man. The words earn and deserve were not in their vocabulary. Is this story true? I wouldn’t doubt it!

  6. Thanks for the reply, Joseph. Yes, being a cog in the machine has always had its dehumanizing issues, but few other choices are supported in the education of children, and as time goes on, even functioning as a cog is perhaps above the abilities of the products of education these days.

    They do not teach you how to be a small business owner in school, no doubt because the goal is to eliminate all or almost all of them – as we see going on currently.

    And I agree that it is very hard to find medical doctors who think for themselves. Such practices are discouraged in general, and are not what will get you through medical school, I’m thinking. The quality of care varies and the knowledge of the doctors varies, but they are the fruit of a poisonous tree, unfortunately.

  7. Ed, don’t close down your thoughts section for a bit. There is much to say. I’ll read “Life Without Principle” soon, and “How Much Land Does a Man Need?” if I can find them. And I’ll re-visit Twain’s house in Hartford. He did have his vanity, like anyone. One wonders how his press empire, if any, would have compared with Hearst’s if he had stuck to journalism. Where is his posthumously published “withering take on American imperialism” to be found? Published well before he died were the novella “The Mysterious Stranger” and short story “The Man Who Corrupted Hadleyville,” both owing a lot to Goethe I’m guessing.

    I spent some time with my family enjoying the Cape Cod National Seashore several weeks after reading your post “Trying to Put All America Behind,” which began by lauding JFK (and Stewart Udall) for getting it into the public domain 60 years ago this month. I’d been through it twice before without doing it justice. One doesn’t think of houses all that much while there — the crabs carry their own. Returned to the Berkshires with a handful of polished stones to remember the trip by.

    Keep it up!

  8. I am reminded of the “We’re all in this together” theme which dominated the early plandemic rhetoric. So, people living in a small urban apartment with five or more other people are in the same boat as the celebrities living alone or with a few servants or family in enormous mansions on 10 acres in the tony suburbs and plutocrats with their obscenely opulent and massive piles and their luxury underground bunkers within which to ride out the storm that is coming.

    Perhaps these vast differences in relative accommodations were not enough for the Bill Gates (of Hell) and George Soros of this world of iniquity. What better way to emphasize the radical differences in the lifestyles of the winners and losers than a “lockdown” of the little people into their tiny cells. And then to say “We’re all in this together”, with the irony lost on the vast majority who do not know that there are no accidents in world events outside of natural disasters, and some of those may also be manmade. The technology and the money is available.

    And for this unprecedented disaster, the technology was scarcely needed, since most of the “herd” still tune into the mainstream media almost exclusively. Given all of the deceptions in play, a real virus was not really needed, and according to many reports, has not been proved to exist. But for the few of a scientific or curious bent, let them debate whether it was natural of manmade. It does not matter.

    It does look like this catastrophic political event was going to be staged, virus or no virus. Multiple waves of infection were predicted by the prescient experts, and by gosh, aren’t we seeing how right they were? One wonders if there are enough letters in the Greek alphabet to name them all!

    But one of the things we are not supposed to notice, as good residents of the ship of fools (even if confined to the lower decks), is the adverse effects, the deaths and debilitating disease caused by the ultimate injected solutions. However, those who knew of these effects beforehand, being aware of the previous efforts to devise a shot for coronavirus, might easily predict such waves.

    Announcing the waves before the first one had even broken not only made the experts seem especially wise, but prepared the public to perceive negative results from inoculation as variants of the original disease. Which mandates further inoculations.

    And round and round it goes. How many people in the US, I wonder, know where to report a negative result to the famous poke? It has been estimated by academic studies that only between 1-10% of adverse effects are reported. Even if one knows where to report it, a great deal of cognitive dissonance is generated by the absorption of the narrative that these things are safe and effective. It might feel like a betrayal of one’s own identity as a believer in science to associate an illness with a recent injection. Most likely it was coincidence.

    And to continue to believe any of the narratives around such events, one must be a great believer in coincidence.

  9. As usual, you have struck a number of chords here, and it will take some time to sort them all out in my mind.

    “The truth is that for most people, work, if they can find it, is drudgery and hard, a matter of survival. The late great Studs Terkel called it hell and rightly said that most jobs are not big enough for people because they crush the soul, they lack meaning.”

    Since the industrial revolution, people have been drawn to the cities, away from the rough labor of farming for the promise of better “pay” in the factories, etc. As efficiency in these institutions was refined, work was divided into smaller, repetitive chunks, requiring less and less skill and intelligence to perform.

    Sometimes the work may be less physically demanding than farm work, but it is always more removed from the actual needs of the people doing it. As a child, I remember how a subtle message was communicated by the teachers and other adults engaged in the more genteel professions, that rural people are ignorant peasants, working as they do in the dirt and living among farm animals.

    I grew up in a fairly small town, the county seat, with larger cities to the north and east and tiny farm villages to the west and south. It was not very sophisticated itself, but took pride in its better neighborhoods.

    Today we can see a need to separate from the big machine that we have been a part of by birth and upbringing. To continue to participate as in the past will mean acceptance of what are obviously lies, poison for our brains and poison for our bodies, volumes of each already digested before it all became so obvious.

    But now it appears there must be a great divergence, and those who cling to the tender care of the state or the global government will be putting their faith in illusions scarcely veiled, as obedience is now a reflex. Those who have not cultivated information sources they can trust will continue to trust the traditional, corporate outlets.

    But modern society has not only rejected the old ways of doing things, but has caused them to be forgotten. The wealthy families controlling oil and thus energy, by virtue of the “charitable” foundations, have inserted themselves into science, medicine, and education.

    Nothing old is any good, whether medicines or ideas. We are told that in the old days, doctors were barbers engaged in bleeding their patients and applying leeches. Herbal remedies used for hundreds or thousands of years have been set at naught, in favor of new, petroleum based treatments (not cures) which can be patented and sold at whatever the market will bear. And due to our compliant officials, the market will always bear more in the US than elsewhere.

    Because it is science which is the savior of the modern ultra-civilized people. But not that science you were taught in grade school, where ideas were put to the test in observation and experiment. No, this is the science determined by political appointees, an ultimate state of knowledge which may not be questioned.

    To escape this matrix, we need to become more like our forebears who struggled to carve out an existence in nature. Because they were more than ignorant peasants, they were the repositories of the real knowledge of the human experience. The current system shields us from nature, in which there is no lie, and lulls us with deceptions and distractions and the promise of wealth to serve it.

    But all wealth and all health comes from nature. It may be distorted by human greed and the cunning of the wealthy, it may be refined by humans into another form. The surgeon cuts, knowing that the body will heal by its nature. Without natural health, he is only a butcher or a coroner.

    To work as a human in nature, among other humans, is rough work, and hard. It requires knowledge and intelligence beyond what the factory requires. Much of the knowledge which could be useful to us has been sent down the memory hole. Now we see the ultimate result of avoiding the hard work and the knowledge of nature, can we find enough of it to find community working within nature, and not against it?

    1. Thanks Eddy…many years ago an elderly woman said, ‘if you don’t know what kind of society you live in, get a job on an assembly line’. And of course that was an era when the ‘cogs in a machine’ metaphor was frequently spoken. Everyone is a cog in the machine and supporting an absolute stupid socio-economic system. Many people don’t know they are simply a cog, a pawn or a slave. The man with grease on his pants is the same as the man in the pin-striped suit. The cogs in the machine are certainly revealing themselves at this time! Some people are even proud to be a cog in someone’s machine. After all, what medical doctor, after years of ‘formal indoctrination’ will acknowledge his is nothing but a profit generating charlatan. Oh, I’m sure there are medical doctors who know something worthy of mention. The only doctors I have met in recent times are simply pharmaceutical sales people. In fact, the only doctor I knew who I thought was a healer was 50 years ago!

  10. The rise of the new monstrous Hydra.
    It’s multiple heads existing as the multiple industry segments of Big Everything.
    Big Banking, Big Investment, Big Oil, Big Energy, Big Pharma, Big Med, Big Auto, Big Gov’t, Big Politics, Big Manufacturing, Big Insurance, Big Media, et al.
    That monstrous Hydra created as a product of, and protector of the Global Cartel of Elite.
    That operate, often covertly, in most every single country.
    Pulling the strings of national “leaders”, like puppets.

    One of the most effective military strategies against an enemy is the multi-fronted attack.
    Virtually surrounding that enemy from all sides.

    That monstrous Hydra, with it’s multiple heads, is capable of effectively containing the populations of citizen serfs.
    From employment, to transportation, to currency, to consumer goods, to healthcare, to food, to retirement, to everything, the masses of citizen serfs have become completely contained, thus controlled by submission, by that monstrous Hydra.

    And any attempt to sever any of those industry segment heads, like Big Tech, in order to reign in that Hydra, simply results in more new heads growing.

    In essence, those citizen serfs exist most solely to continue to feed the many heads of that monstrous Hydra, which is slowly feeding on those citizen serfs themselves.

    Only two options exist:
    Fast death for refusal to feed that monstrous Hydra.
    Or slow, prolonged death, living solely to feed that monstrous Hydra.

  11. There is always a sadness in your writing, as we read of our ills. But always a hopefulness, knowing that a light has revealed the truth of our ills. I thank you, Ed.

  12. “Years ago, I discovered some documents that showed that one of this country’s most famous philosophers, known for his lofty moral pronouncements, owned a lot of stock in companies that were doing evil things…”
    “But let us also ask where the writers and presenters of the mainstream and alternative media get their money. ”

    In a truly feudal society, such as we live in today, pretty much everyone is living most solely to serve the neo-feudal Lords.
    Even most all the small business “Owners” & “Entrepreneurs” now exist just as mere middlepersons.
    They either push the wares and/or services produced by the corporate giants, or they most often have to support the Big Banks & Big Finance corporations for working capital, or go public, selling out to the Big Asset Management firms.
    Most all of us now exist most solely to drive revenue & profits to those Lords.

    Even most all the Middle Class & mildly wealthy (aka millionaires) must often invest either in one of the major Big Asset Management firms, or a smaller firm that is invested in one of the major Big Asset Management firms.
    Even most all homeowners contribute to the upward redistribution of wealth.
    Many griping about the Elite, but often eager to cash-in on the highly-bubbled housing boom, thereby screwing their family, or friends, or neighbors, or fellow serfs, in order to realize a last-ditch effort to make their own gains.
    Even the act of home-ownership is an exercise in wealth redistribution to the top, as money flows first from homeowners to Contractors, Plumbers, Electricians, Roofers, Home Improvement stores, et al., each of whom exist as middlepersons to upward flow to the Elite.
    In an interesting side-note, I recently saw a chart from the Federal Reserve that showed that since the 70’s to current, the average return on a primary residence was about (minus) -.315 percent.
    Taking into consideration expenses of mortgage interest, closing fees, taxes, repairs/maintenance, etc.
    So even the quest for resell profits is merely an exercise in further enriching the already rich.
    The American Dream?
    Wealth & assets are that concentrated today.
    Most all people today either pay-to-play, or are totally excluded.

    In reality, whilst the Middle Class is chastising the Elite for their “haves”, that same Middle Class is supporting that Elite, as both screw the lower classes.
    True “trickle-down” economics.
    Looking upwards considering what you don’t have compared to the wealthier, rather than looking downwards & considering what you do have in comparison to those with much less, or even none.
    But it’s easier to look at the faults of others, than to look at our own.

    But of course that flaunting of wealth is only effective when we allow ourselves to be judged by materialism.
    Stuff is only valuable when people hoard it, and others succumb to the allures & desires of that hoarded stuff.

    “Five enemies of peace inhabit with us – avarice, ambition, envy, anger, and pride; if these were to be banished, we should infallibly enjoy perpetual peace.”

    If more people engaged in more one-to-one bartering there would be less need for centrally-controlled money.
    And forget trendy fads like cryptocurrency as well, which, despite their narratives of decentralization, can still too easily be hoarded & thus controlled & manipulated.
    If more people created more of their own goods, using the vast but oft-disregarded natural resources, there would be less need for dependence on Big Everything.
    If more people had more skills to self-sustain, they’d be less dependent.
    Fewer people would be willing to or in need of working for the companies that are largely owned by the Big Asset Management firms.
    Fewer people would be willing to or in need of investing in the companies that are largely owned or controlled by the Big Asset Management firms.

    I’ve most always been fascinated by the concepts of slavery and obedience and other such forms of oppression, and have come to realize that they continue to exist because those oppressed allow it, often merely via complacency.

    There are tremendous power & profit motives behind systems of growing dependence.
    Most everyone I know that complains of the super-wealthy class, similarly continues to support that super wealthy class.
    So, who’s really at fault here?

    As I repeatedly say to most everyone, from “liberal” to “conservative”, “Dem” to “GOP” to “Progressive” to “Libertarian”, et al…..
    Judge thyself first.
    Live by example.

    Talk minus action = ZERO!

    1. Thank you Sam and you said, “I’ve most always been fascinated by the concepts of slavery and obedience and other such forms of oppression, and have come to realize that they continue to exist because those oppressed allow it, often merely via complacency.” I agree, we allow it. Why? I’m willing to bet a nickel that the intimacy of communication between most people is all but zero. Including those people sitting at the dinner table every day. Noise disturbing silence. So thus, there is little trust among the slaves, only obedience to masters due to fear of the unknown.
      With more humane, candid communications among citizens, there might be more trust, the invisible barriers of skepticism, fear and distrust can dissipate, enabling more effective, ‘FELLOW FEELINGS’, UNDERSTANDING SAMENESS among people, thus enable further communications on plans, strategies and so forth. I’ve been fortunate, occasionally and rarely.
      This probably won’t happen around here since most people have become numb to a basic, ‘hello’; Extremely unresponsive and only to various authorities, abusive authorities. OH, people will gladly use their fellow being as a scape goat, regress to witch hunts since they do not know how to process their emotions and thoughts, which can be learned, insight gained from peacefully speaking to their fellow human. Speaking their ‘blood and guts’ NOT the shallow intellect. That won’t happen around here since people take pride in relinquishing their humanity to the beasts…, then go back to sleepwalking.

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