Skip to main content

When it's worse than you already think it is

This blog is going to begin a new project - The Mind-Heart Advent Calendar which will operate like the Christmas Advent Calendar but instead of chocolates or gifts, each day will be a gift of life-affirming community to recall our humanity. Rather than the oppressive messages of capitalism which have dominated corporate media.

Says Chris Hedges: "Our capitalist democracy ceased to function more than two decades ago. We underwent a corporate coup carried out by the Democratic and Republican parties. There are no institutions left that can authentically be called democratic."

Hedges points out the "long and ruthless corporate assault on the working class, the legal system, electoral politics, the mass media, social services, the ecosystem, education and civil liberties in the name of neo-liberalism has disemboweled the country."

Noam Chomsky compares this time to late Weimar Germany.  It has left the nation a decayed wreck. We celebrate ignorance. We have replaced political discourse, news, culture and intellectual inquiry with celebrity worship and spectacle.

Chomsky, in the article published in April 2010 predicted the sweep of right wing Republicans: "We will be told that white males are a persecuted minority. We will be told we have to defend ourselves and the honor of the nation. Military force will be exalted. People will be beaten up. This could become an overwhelming force. And if it happens it will be more dangerous than Germany."

Although I live in Canada - a different nation, we shall be impacted and we are threatened by this movement as much as Europe was threatened by the Nazi's.  The nature of our society with its deniers, thugs, and public activists is still the same.  Those who seek power know how to divide us and I am hoping that this blog might help inspire us to come together to respond.

Every day beginning December 1st this blog will post a new quote, image or aphorism or advice that will link us to our humanity to fight the darkness of hate and ignorance. Not by calling names to people but by calling out our vulnerability to defeat in spirit.  Please sign up to receive these posts as they become available every day. Also if you wish to contribute a piece please contact me via the comment section.


Popular posts from this blog

About Humanity

"A chosen people is the opposite of a master race, first, because it is not a race but a covenant; second because it exists to serve God, not to master others. A master race worships itself, a chosen people worships something beyond itself. A master race believes it has rights; a chosen people knows only that it has responsibilities." Rabbi Jonathan Sacks, Not in God's Name, Schocken, New York. 2015.

As someone who does not identify as a chosen people or part of a master race, I ruminate about how to respond to the world, particularly that part of the world I cannot endorse. So I am comforted by the people who have taken on ministry and who feel responsible enough to care for community.

How do I act on a feeling of responsibility without assuming that I know what other people should do, or what we should do? It's very easy to slip into a political preaching that suggests I know, or that my being a good example means that others should follow it. Or worse yet, create…

Creating Chaos

A very important article in The Guardian analyses the rise of hyper-masculinity and the phenomenon of Angry White Men.  "Sociologist Michael Kimmel is one of the world’s foremost experts on the phenomenon. - His recent research has looked at topics including spree killers (who are overwhelmingly male and white), as well as the relationship between masculinity and political extremism."

In the article there is a report on a study on testosterone where 5 monkeys are observed. The one who rises to the top beats up number 2 and number 2 beats up number 3 - and so it goes down to number 5. 

"So the experiment is: he takes monkey three out of the cage and he shoots him up with testosterone, off the scale, and puts him back in. What do you think happens? When I tell this story my students always guess that he immediately becomes number-one monkey. But that’s not true. What happens is that when he goes back in the cage he still avoids monkeys number one and two – but he beats the …

Albert Camus: Our task