August 18, 2008

Dog Days of August 2008

Here it is, the 3rd week of August, supposed to be a moribund season, and what have we, instead? Why, a 3-ring global circus of events blurring the tele-screens while most of the populace carries on in blissful autonomia. The quadrennial 'sports' orgy called 'the Olympics,' is already a week old and still reeking of Western double standards while China puts on a dazzling display to the onlooking world. As if on coincidental cue, there's a blow-up in a part of the world most Americans have never heard of, let alone could find on a map. And in the background, all the usual nonsense swirls on, proving to some of us that the world is getting crazier by the minute, not year or month.

Yes, there is apparently, a new 'demonstration sport' introduced at this year's Olympics with no advance fanfare. It's Political Hypocrisy, and not surprisingly, the gold medal has already gone to-- (are you ready?)-- George W. Bush, for another superb performance, capping a career of world-class hypocrisy. Just prior to the opening ceremonies, he again accused China of human rights abuses, and occupation of a sovereign state (Tibet), and lack of democracy. The judges were impressed not only with the program content, but the delivery was worthy of an Oscar, not just a sports gold medal. The team prize for hypocrisy, tho, goes to the North American media who discovered that the opening song was lip-synched by a 9-year old beauty while another talented child did the vocals behind the scenes. Days later it's still a 'story,' presented as if we 'Westerners' would never stoop to such superficially-focused illusion! Come on; our whole 'entertainment industry' is nothing but beautiful people pretending to be 'normal.' Our Olympic committees would simply hold a contest for the most beautiful child who could also sing. Well, the rest of the Olympics are about the usual fussing and fuming about 'healthy competition' among countries... while keeping constant vigilance for cheating athletes using performance-enhancing substances. And, of course, there's the obsession with medals, medals. medals, and who might be able to break the American stranglehold on the hardware count.

Some consider the Olympic Games to be a safe, ritualized form of aggression that help mankind avoid bloody warfare, to which I agree. However, it seems we just can't abandon our favorite sport, and sure enough, as the Games opened, Georgia decided to break the boredom of summer by attacking a place called South Ossetia, on Russia's southern flank. True to the dog-days theme, the Western media, like a pack of lap-dogs of the White House, all spewed forth a barrage of blatant propaganda intended to paint Russia the transgressing, unpredictable 'bear,' while fabricating Georgia as the poor, brave, little democracy fighting for the survival of civilized values in the region. They featured Bush-inc. and his NWO cohorts reading statements with straight face condemning the invasion of a sovereign nation, the killing of innocent civilians, attempting to depose a democratically elected president, and 'extending its sphere of influence outside its boundaries.' All of this in a display of nauseating hypocrisy that eclipsed his 'Olympic' performance. Not one of the media 'news' giants mentioned that Russia was responding to military provocation in South Ossetia, whose citizens use Russian passports for travel abroad. Nor did any of them point out the obvious fact that Bush and his toadies (including Britain, Canada, and, oddly, Georgia, among others) have done exactly everything that he accused Russia of. As in the case of the US condemnation of China on human rights, Bush is hardly in any position to criticize another country on extra-territorial adventures. For any possibility of discovering a semblance of truth, one must go to the Internet and read a variety of sources. Hence, one has to worry if Bush and his buddies were in China to learn some techniques of censoring the 'Net.'

Meanwhile, summer is in full swing. Visitors from afar are coming to enjoy familial hospitality, and motorists are adjusting to over-priced gasoline and making tentative trips on the road. How many, you have to wonder, have the foggiest notion of where 'South Ossetia' is located? How about North Ossetia? Or Abkhazia? They're all close to Chechnya, by the way; and you know how Chechnya was engaged in a bloody struggle with the Russians, just a few years ago... right? Like most zombies, I just assumed that the Chechen conflict was some Islamic uprising in an obscure corner of the former USSR, and of no possible concern to me. Wrong! It's a perfect example of 'ignorance is bliss'... until events come crashing around your ears. It turns out that Chechnya was yet another odious example of CIA meddling in foreign countries' affairs in order to de-stabilize a perceived enemy nation, and/or to install a 'democratic government,' meaning, it ought to be blatantly clear by now, a regime friendly to Western multinational corporate interests. Since that ploy didn't quite pan out as intended (what else is new?) they looked for another way to 'bait the bear.' With the insatiable lust for petroleum in their eyes, the US is looking for any feasible routes to run pipelines to the nearest 'friendly' ports. The big problem for the Americans is that petroleum resources from the Caspian Sea region and beyond would logically run thru either Russian or Iran-- both of whom have been cultivated as enemies by the ever-astute American foreign policy shapers. Since these routes are non-starters, the US has designated once-forgotten Afghanistan as a must-have (as Barack Obama has voiced, inheriting his direction from earlier Clinton decisions). In addition, they have engineered 'friendly' regimes in Ukraine and Georgia, hoping to contain Russian influence and especially, run their pipeline outside of Russian control.

Without going into an analysis of the present situation (which is well covered by many able Web writers) my point is to underscore how events in 'obscure corners of the world' can have disastrous influence on our peaceful lives. In 1914, in a tiny piece of the eastern European puzzle-board, a 'nobody' became one of history's somebodies by assassinating Achduke Ferdinand of Austria, an event considered the spark that triggered the First World War. Thousands of Commonwealth soldiers, and later Americans, went across the ocean to spill their blood on foreign soil; yet, how many Canadians, Americans, or Australians could find Sarajevo on a map of the 'Austro-Hungarian Empire?' Even in 1939, it's doubtful that a majority of North Americans could easily find Poland on a map, on hearing that Germany had invaded it. And so today, we have seemingly trivial conflicts taking place in far-away places with strange names, involving apparently ages-old grudges, and we hardly give them a second thought. But, who knows? Once again, one of these conflicts could lead to more serious, geo-political consequences, and we could wake up wondering how the heck did we get ourselves in another mess?

Aye, there's the tragedy. The vast majority of humans simply want to live a peaceful life, one in which our children can live out their entire natural lives without having it shattered by the specter of war between nations. Yet, generation after generation, our race keeps getting involved in wars that, in the long run, prove futile. Why can't we stop? One reason, I propose, is the fact that the majority do not want to 'bother with politics', hence become easy to manipulate into the next 'good war.' And one reason we don't like to consider public policy is that our education system gives it very short shrift-- not just making politics another dreary, irrelevant subject to pass (or by-pass), but also failing to instill a sense of civic responsibility into developing minds. All attention is focused on careers and clicking off 'subjects' on a list until one is deemed qualified to receive a piece of paper attesting to their having sat thru all the items on the list. But that just leads to the next lower layer, which has to do with the very fundaments of our society, wherein we are taught to value material prosperity over everything else.

As illustration, I lately receive e-newsletters from some casual acquaintances-- a fine couple who relocated from a former Soviet state, and who are raising a family in a pleasant, small city. As members of a MLM (multi-level marketing) organization, selling a health-related product, they have immersed themselves in books and videos extolling the power of positive thinking, and the power of 'the law of attraction' in achieving your goals. Altho applicable to any goal, the primary one, of course, is financial and material, and so they are, like so many modern individuals, caught up in the treadmill of 'success,' where success is measured by the size of one's bank account, home, and garage toys. Nothing wrong with making money, having a swimming pool, etc. But multiply their ambitions by say, 300 million North Americans, plus 350 million Europeans, and now add a billion Chinese, plus a billion Indians, and 'Houston, we have a problem!' A society completely predicated on consumption of 'goods' as its sole economic paradigm simply cannot continue to exist indefinitely. In fact, we are seeing before our startled eyes-- (those of us who chose to see)-- that the materialistic dream starts to unravel in a very short period of time, historically speaking (since we are barely two centuries into the 'Industrial Revolution'). The Capitalist dream was a huge moral-economic experiment, and is demonstrating unequivocally how bankrupt and unsustainable it is. Once you excise the soul from human affairs, the spiritual bent from the human, society is doomed to self-destruction... barring drastic reforms of thinking... or catastrophe, or divine intervention. The first solution, widespread reforms, is highly unlikely, for the reason that the 'system' has become so entrenched, so self-reinforcing, that no person, society, nation, or whatever, could muster the all-out energy required to turn this supertanker 180 degrees. Those optimistic souls, god bless 'em, who recycle plastic bags and drive 'hybrid' vehicles to pick up their ethical lattes, don't seem to really get the ugly point-- which is, that such pathetic gestures are hopelessly inadequate to restore the Earth to a livable condition. Nothing short of drastic, diametrically opposite measures will be able to prevent the coming cosmic train wreck.

The main reason for the failure of this species, as I've stated in other essays, is that a small group of satanically inspired individuals is hell-bent on an insane plan to control the whole Earth and impose their dystopian vision on the planet's survivors. I grant you, cher lecteur, that this notion is a hard sell, considered grounds for commitment to an insane asylum in some people's opinion. (Fortunately-- if you can say so-- they don't have insane asylums anymore, the system having realized that the whole world is so crazy that turning loose a few, certified patients isn't going to be even noticed these days.) Hence, I state my beliefs, and wait patiently for history to vindicate me... if that's possible in a future world laid waste. Anyway, as these dog days of 2008 are showing, events are moving briskly along, and whatever celestial destiny lies in store for this planet will not tarry long in arriving at our collective doorstep.

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