Wonderful piece, beautifully put

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YouTube has been re-circulating a 2015 speech Glenn Greenwald gave at the Univ. of Utah at the height of the Snowden reporting. Here's what he said about secrecy and the security state:

"What you have is a government inside a government, an undemocratic apparatus making all of the decisions beneath a shell of democracy—something that looks like a democracy and is called a democracy, but has almost none of the properties a democracy is defined by."

Glenn Greenwald: "Edward Snowden and the Secrets of the National Security State" - YouTube


One of the most damaging aspects of Russia-gate and the ongoing liberal union with CIA/neocons was it took a fundamental fact about US political life -- the dominance and supreme danger of the Deep State -- and turned it into a conspiracy theory no decent person should believe.

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Perfect, just perfect, thank you.

We have this unusual tendency to contract all of our attention around a particular upsetting issue to the point we block out a greater and more vital perspective that points out root causes.

To be upset sends a survival brain signal that we might be in danger so, “ all hands on deck”, we focus completely on the upsetting issue until we can feel safe again.

The ego and its emotional component, the shadow/pain body, have extraordinary—extraordinarily destructive—single-minded focus.

Ironically, single-pointed focus on any sense perception in the present moment— concentration leading to meditation—is what we need to begin dissolving the compulsive thinking and reacting of the ego.

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Had a distant family member visit over Thanksgiving. Has a nice job, nice car, nice house. Brought along his rather spoiled 10 year old.

Driving around, he tunes his radio to whatever's popular. He told me he once listened to a station for six months before he realized it was Christian Rock. I asked if he liked jazz, and he said, no; he didn't get it. Consumes mainstream entertainment without questioning it. Votes, but doesn't appear well-versed in politics, or even interested in what those votes wrought. Decent guy, wouldn't hurt a fly.

My point here is that if he read this article -- which he will never see -- I imagine he'd smile uncomfortably just like millions of other hardworking but strangely uncurious Americans, and, just like jazz, he would have absolutely no idea what the notes were trying to tell him.

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Really good well observed article and light at the end of the tunnel.

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I’m thinking she’s saying to kill the Morlocks first, then collectively become Eloi. The trouble is we’re already spineless, epicurean Eloi, hoping that the Morlocks dispose of us painlessly.

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A healthy world? First of all, what are "we"? If we are unchanging consciousness, then "we" won't become extinct or die out. We will live forever.

The fundamental error here is the belief that we are born into the world. Wrong! We are consciousness and the world is born into us!

If consciousness is fundamental and forever and world comes and goes, then "we" can't be harmed.

If we can't be harmed what problem could possibly happen?

We were taught to believe (since Galileo) that the world exists independent of consciousness. False assumption! No one has ever been outside of consciousness/awareness to verify a world independent of awareness. And that is never going to happen.

One wrong assumption and we're all miserable.

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Without God everything is permissible. Evolution, if you believe in it, is only doing what it does best; weeding out the weak and if as a result of this 'wondrous symmetry' we will go the way of the dinosaurs then that surely is its beauty? Our extinction should no more be mourned than that of the Brontosaurus...we should view it 'scientifically' that is, dispassionately.

However, the fact that many of us mourn humanity's imminent demise and its present sad condition may be indicative that we may not necessarily be the result of random and impossibly unlikely providential or miraculous mutations but something altogether more. Maybe designed...with a purpose, by a creator that has a purpose (and feels like us...as we were designed; to have compassion and hate injustice and love truth and to love) and all that is going on is just another factor of our deep denial of these 'facts'. And our investment in this anxiety is like 'kicking against the goads' (to use a biblical expression) and just another aspect of our being part of the problem.

It is our relentless pursuit of power, self-power, the self-destructive 'we know best' attitude that has got us to this pitiful place as a race, not the humility and the need to submit to truth... not some subjective political truth but universal truth; Where do we come from? Why are we here? Where are we going?

To listen to our 'designer', if one exists, might prove helpful to us...but then we need to be prepared to admit that we may be wrong and that takes not just a questioning mind but a courageous humility to be prepared to reject the years of destructive conditioning.

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Not content with creating one brick composed entirely of jello, you compound the error in attempting to construct a tower.

Have you seen what history tells us about those who believe in gods HAVE found permissible? Just take the Book of Jacob; one need go no further, but there are miles yet to travel along that bloody path for those with inquiring minds and strong stomachs.

Evolution is not a belief, like, say, Christianity is. It is currently the best means we have at the moment to explain the diversity of species we experience. That's it. If a more robust and testable interpretation of observable phenomena is presented, then that will replace it, but it will do so by evidence, not by belief. I suppose you also believe that anyone who accepts evolution can't fall in love, tell a joke, or cry at the movies.

Your supposition that if one accepts evolution then we should greet intelligent apes hurling nuclear weapons about passively is beyond ludicrous, as is your recommendation that we need only "listen to our designer." You may have noticed that the godly can't seem to get their stories straight, resulting in over 33,000 versions of Christianity alone. You recommend submitting to the truth, but which truth would that be? Do I take a Christian's version of it, or a Jew's? A liberal Jew's or an Orthodox Jew's? Religion presents just one more extension of the very human problems which vex us all.

Where do we come from? Great question, but I'm fine living with mystery instead of listening to those who pretend to know, and just maybe kill me if I don't agree.

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I think I was suggesting that the theory of evolution is neither robust nor remotely testable. And the approach we are taking now is clearly not working. So, what to do?

Your point that neither has religion provided answers is correct it hasn’t, in fact it is religion and its terrible history that has caused many in the West to turn away from the Bible. Understandably. But let’s take the Creator idea away from religion as we know it for the moment for the sake of argument.

In the Second world War the Allies were prepared to incinerate whole cities including civilians and children because they believed Nazism was wrong. Many were prepared not just to die but to kill for a principle. Those who fought on the side of the Allies are referred to as ‘heroic’ and are honoured each year on remembrance days. Why? No doubt the justification for such retaliatory violence was strengthened when it became apparent at the liberation of the death camps to what depths of evil the Nazis had stooped and that they had to be stopped. Even if we had to burn to death German children, babies to do it and by extension Japanese civilians, children indeed babies by the city.

I am not aware of the Book of Jacob...is it an apocryphal book or did you mean the Book of Joshua? Either way I think you may be referring to the destruction of the Canaanites.

Humans can use religion or atheistic political extremism or whatever is convenient; racism, tribalism etc. to justify their murder of one another. The Canaanites would burn alive their children or bury them alive in the walls of their new houses as a dedication to Molech or Ashtoreth or the Baals. One archaeologist remarked on finding a large stash of urns with the remains of the babies they had burned alive saying ‘It’s a wonder God did not destroy them sooner’. I am not sure he even believed in God but he was clearly disgusted by this horrendous discovery.

The Nazi system was destroyed and Germany was better for it. As the Levant was rid of the Canaanite tribes and all even including non-Israelites like the Moabites, Edomites, Midianites etc. were better for it. We did not live in that ancient world with their curious mores or I suspect the 1930’s and early 1940’s with our parents or grand-parents’ mores (the routine racism, segregation and anti-Semitism for example equally may baffle us today). But we are glad, despite the violence of past systems that we are the direct products of, that we live in marginally more enlightened times.

And so, to Evolution, could not the same argument of pretending to know where we come from apply? If we are a random result of mutations, who are you or I to say that the Nazis were wrong? They of all people enshrined the belief of Darwinian ‘survival of the fittest’ into their political philosophy and then acted on it. Eugenics was not just popular with the Nazis just look up the history of birth control…Marie Stopes for example who wanted the ‘racially diseased’ sterilised with radiation.

None of us can provably know how we came to be but we can reason on the scientific evidence and not blindly accept the evolutionary position of our day because it is ‘assumed’ wisdom in spite of evidence to the contrary.

As H.S.Lipson, the evolutionary physicist said:

‘The only acceptable explanation is creation. I know that this is anathema to physicists, as indeed it is to me, but we must not reject a theory we do not like if the experimental evidence supports it.’ (Physics Bulletin, 1980, Vol. 31, p. 138.) (Emphasis is mine.)

When Carl Sagan candidly acknowledged, “The fossil evidence could be consistent with the idea of a Great Designer.” It was because the evidence (the Cambrian Explosion) contradicted the idea of gradual development of life over millions of years. Life ‘exploded’ onto our planet in dizzying complexity. How?

Now if we have a problem with the word ‘God’ (because of its association with bad religion) we can substitute it for ‘Intelligent extra-terrestrial’ as evolutionist Francis Crick did (he of DNA double helix fame) maybe we could call the designer an ‘inter-dimensional being’ instead of the rather passé word ‘Spirit’, if that suits us. But if we follow the evidence we get intelligent creator either way. And then the questions: Why? To what purpose were we created? And so on. It could mean good news for humanity and hope. But not a passive let’s wait and see…Christ instructed his followers to go out and preach this good news. The good news of an incorruptible rulership founded on peace with a manifesto we can all benefit from.

At the risk of writing the premise for the next Alien movie I’ll leave it there.

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I appreciate your lengthy reply. It's obvious we're not going to come to any real agreement, since you've accepted the Christian framework of human sacrifice and called it a good thing, which still leaves us very much stuck.

And yes i did mean Joshua and not Jacob. (An edit function would be most handy around here.) It's not only religion that's a turnoff, but the Bible itself, with so many things morally repugnant, which we needn't catalogue here.

Suffice it to say one can easily witness the lies, deceit, and casual brutality of the Biblical authors' descendents toward the original inhabitants of Palestine today to not greet anything jotted down thousands of years ago by the "chosen people" with anything but a large degree of skepticism.

From your comments I don't believe your knowledge of evolution is as complete as it might be. Plugging your god of the gaps into the equation does not really get us anywhere meaningful.

If we are to have a 21st century religion, let's have one worthy of an intelligent species unencumbered by kings and kingdoms, promised lands, rank tribalism, prophets, blood sacrifice, foreskin-collector deities, virgin births, God-ordained slavery, petty tests of faith, genocide, conditional love, dietary fetishism, dead ritual, and juvenile demands to endlessly worship. At least that would be a start.

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“Things are fucked. That's our current situation in a nutshell.”

Yes, and perhaps that is exactly how we like it. Isn’t “Fucked…in a nutshell” how every great story begins, whether it’s a novel, play, movie, epic poem, video game. The fiction teachers used to call it “conflict”—if such a term is even allowed in our modern woke creative writing programs. It’s what fascinates us and keeps us reading, viewing, or playing. We just love finding out all the clever, brilliant, heroic, devious, bumbling, angelic, devilish, hilarious ways the characters (heroes, anti-heroes, minor characters, NPCs) respond to this fuckedness. Some get the Hollywood ending, some die dreadfully. Some become filthy rich but unimaginably miserable. Some marry the man/woman/they/entity of their dreams only to find out he/she/ze/it turns into a were-weasel every Tuesday. Others get the shaft but find the meaning of life. Others lose everything and everyone that ever mattered, yet walk off into the sunset laughing their asses off. Ain’t it grand, as some say.

Of course, having a boss fight with Bill Gates using anti-blue-screen-of-death magic to leave him in an eternal keyboard-smashing, rebooting rage in which he is absolutely powerless to fix it and has to wait endlessly on the phone in tech-support hell would be enormously satisfying.

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Y'know how fads pop up, spontaneously, as if spontaneously... out of nowhere. And it's only denial-ridden, speciously oblivious rich folks can afford to ignore them (until media ass-hats totally misconstrue their kids' odd obsessions with silly-ass poor folks being murdered or firestorms & city sized methane fireballs, where permafrost used to be; or folks flying jetliners full of folks into huge skyscrapers? Howsabout, yunz young kids up and EATING rich white churls in NYC, DC or y'know, like the Hamptons, Palm Springs? Just a few at a time, at first. Giving Rachel or Anderson time to blame Russia or China? Then, livestream viral video, to prove it's affluent 'Murikan honkey kids, doing it. It's not like we've a whole bunch of time. They're getting pretty BLATANT killing the rest of us to flip our homes, indenture us into shitty gig-serfdom or incarcerating us like slaves?

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