If you’ve never traveled around the state of Texas, you won’t really get an accurate picture of this odd land of extremes. The cities, especially Austin and Houston, are islands of relative sanity surrounded by a sea of crazy. All this considered, the unveiling of the Texas GOP’s platform should come as no surprise. They have merely tapped into the paranoid, hyper-nationalist, fascist zeitgeist so prevalent among a large swath of its white, Christian population.
“But when you get into the details of it, it’s pretty goddamn mind-blowing. I mean, not that most people watching us right now, you were like, yeah, I knew Saudi Arabia was involved in shit but for you to see the evidence, to see the proof, to see literally drawings of planes hitting buildings is still mind-blowing.” — Lee Camp
This article is Part Two in a series on American collapse and the potential for a U.S. civil war. Read part one for a detailed explanation of the ideas I’ll mention here about the U.S. empire’s internal cognitive warfare.
The imperialists are the architects of their own demise. Through reacting to the decline of U.S. hegemony by domestically applying Washington’s tactics abroad—highly militarized policing, exploitative policies, covert CIA propaganda, clampdowns on journalism, paramilitarism—the imperialists are ultimately accelerating this unraveling. This is because when these and other imperialist tactics are used abroad, they have the effect of making the places they target more unstable.
Recently Norman Ornstein told Salon’s Chauncy de Vega that the United States is mired in a crisis of democracy that shows parallels with Germany’s descent into Nazism during the 1930s. Ornstein is right to worry about the nation’s ongoing lethal rightward drift beyond “normal” bourgeois democracy. That is how the United States’ political life is shaping up. The signs are ominous indeed. As de Vega writes, “the coup attempt of January is only a prelude to similar events in the future, when Republicans and their allies fully intend to overthrow any election they lose, and therefore deem illegitimate.”
Over the past couple years of this pandemic, it has been breathtaking to see the depth of the rabbit hole so many have fallen into. And that many of them purport to be on the left is both fascinating and terrifying. For far too many people, masks requirements, vaccine mandates or any kind of public health measure is looked at solely through the lens of conspiracy. To them, anything that might come from government or “Big Pharma” is to be distrusted or discounted. A virus that continues to bring healthcare systems to their knees and send millions to their premature deaths is still being referred to as a hoax or the flu. And despite decades of documentation on the effectiveness of eradicating or controlling deadly diseases through vaccines, there is a persistent paranoia when it comes to medical advances and science. It is worth examining what led us to this point in history.
The United States has hit a dangerous threshold when a senior member of the Trump administration is warning citizens to arm themselves because “leftwing hit squads” are about to seek retribution.
This is shaping up to be the most ugly election in U.S. history with fiery consequences. Could the nation be heading for civil war, a century and a half after the last one?
Donald Trump’s indulgence in conspiracy theories is running amok. The latest is his speculation that a 75-year-old man who had his skull split open by police was a “provocateur”.
At a certain point in an age of absurdity the normalization of madness becomes so common that it is almost indiscernible to most in the thick of it. Indeed, late capitalism, the stage which is undoubtedly preceding complete barbarism, has produced an endless stream of absurdities which not only insult the senses of those who possess a conscience and a modicum of critical thinking skills, but can also deliver a fatal injury as we are seeing unfold in real time with tepid or reckless responses to the Covid-19 pandemic.
with Chris Hedges
RT America on Apr 29, 2019
Rachel Maddow smugly tweeted “death by algorithm” with a link to a recent Washington Post article lamenting that an Aaron Maté interview conducted by Pulitzer prize-winning journalist Chris Hedges, host of RT America’s “On Contact,” was recommended to people in the wake of the Mueller Report. Hedges joins Rick Sanchez to respond to Maddow’s latest conspiratorial spasm. He argues that she “functions to keep viewers glued to the set” and that her claims “aren’t tied to any verifiable reality.”
with Chris Hedges
RT America on Apr 20, 2019
On this week’s show, Chris Hedges discusses with Nation reporter, Aaron Mate, how despite Robert Mueller’s report categorical statement that Donald Trump and his campaign did not collude with Russia, the conspiracy theories by the nation’s mainstream media show little sign of diminishing.
with Abby Martin
Empire Files on Jun 4 2016
With thousands of advertisements seen by Americans everyday, and a corporate media that reinforces the needs of Empire, propaganda in the U.S. is more pervasive and effective than ever before. The manipulation of public opinion through suggestion can be traced back to the father of modern propaganda, Edward Bernays, who discovered that preying on the subconscious mind was the best way to sell products people don’t need, and wars people don’t want. To get a deeper understanding of how propaganda functions in today’s society, Abby Martin interviews Dr. Mark Crispin Miller, professor of Media Studies at New York University.