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    Media
    Media Manuel Valenzuela: 'The stupefaction of a nation'
    Posted on Wednesday, December 10 @ 10:21:03 EST
    Corporate Media Propaganda and its Weapons of Mass Distraction

    By Manuel Valenzuela

    He who controls the media controls the masses. Today, America's media is controlled exclusively by fewer than a dozen multinational conglomerates and their many interests. NewsCorp, AOL, Viacom, General Electric, Disney and others have formed a media oligarch that reaches into every American home and most every citizen. These few omnipresent entities hold as paramount the belief in assuring for themselves perpetual loyalty from as many of the masses as possible. Revenue and profit, corporate growth and power, executive pay and ego, these are all determined by us, the masses, and helps explain why the oligarchy has decided to invest and take an interest in all forms of media that reaches and influences us.

    We are the lifeblood of the conglomerate, of vital importance, and, as such, it is in its best interest to control as much of our lives as possible, transforming us into obedient servants of obliviousness. Is it no coincidence, then, that the United States has become a nation whose masses no longer question authority or the propaganda that passes for news? Is it any wonder why we seem so ignorant as to what is being done to us and incurious as to what is happening in the world, readily and naively accepting as true everything that is spewed out of our televisions and newspapers? We have allowed the oligarchy to hide the keys of democracy while we carelessly follow it on the road to fascism, where the elite have control of all aspects of our lives, including our mind.



    We live at a time when capitalism's inner demons are beginning to be exhumed from the catacombs of the human ego, when love for the almighty dollar and her sister greed blinds those basking in the hypnotizing light of greenbacks and materialism. This phenomenon, combined with the addictions spurred by power and pomposity, has created in the last several decades a need by the powerful elite to manipulate and condition the masses; to transform and mold us into subservient drones that neither think, question, participate or demand.

    Through the use of the television -- the most influential instrument of control and propaganda in present day America conglomerates can direct and sway public opinion on virtually every subject they see fit. The television has become an opiate for the masses and a conduit from where conglomerates can dictate how society thinks, acts and evolves. Our habits and ethics are manipulated, our ideas and beliefs distorted. We are but pawns in a game of corporate capitalism played by a few elites whose economic interests lie in making us docile, conformist and oblivious creatures of mediocrity ingrained with the need to shop and consume. The system instills a sense of paralysis, isolation and uniformity among the masses. We are assimilated to conform to society, to incorporate how the oligarchy wants us to live. The derailment of democracy as we know it is the end result of the reality we are presently experiencing.

    As captives to their propaganda, our ears become theirs, our mouths spout their distortions and our minds contemplate what they want us to believe. To the capitalist elites, we are but a product, hundreds of millions of worker bees addicted to televison, easily persuaded and exploited, wishing for the escapist fantasies we see, sold like shares of stock to other corporate entities interested in our existence, in our captive audience. They are the strings by which we move, the drill instructors by which we march and the brain by which we think.

    Propaganda, both corporate and governmental, has seemingly exploded with the ever-increasing consolidation of the media. Today few interests own the majority of our nation's airwaves, newspapers, Internet access, print media and television stations. One company can in essence control everything you hear, see and read on a daily basis, every year of your life. From coast to coast our sources of information are increasingly being sold to wealthy multinational corporations that more and more are mingling into our daily lives, transforming our beliefs, views and goals. American society is guided by them, evolving through the commands that help shape the direction opinion will take. Diversity of opinion and thought is disappearing faster than biodiversity on Earth.

    There is nothing more ominous than peering into the not-to-distant future and seeing Rupert Murdoch's NewsCorp one of the world's largest media companies and owner of the Fox network (We distort, We decide) have majority ownership of DirecTV, the nation's largest home satellite TV company that in many ways represents the future of entertainment and information delivery. If the deal is allowed to go through NewsCorp could incessantly shove down our throats its right-wing, pro-Bush, pro-Murdoch business propaganda while shutting off truthful and diverse sources of information. With Bush's FCC enamored with consolidation it is a good bet that the deal will go through.

    Guided by measly crumbs of ten-second news flashes, in paltry thirty-minute news capsules loaded with a potpourri of deceptions and distortions, the masses are subjected to a blitzkrieg-like summary of that news which the elites deem necessary to serving their own interests. These drops of news and information we are granted are designed to quench the already conditioned low level of curiosity among the masses. These morsels have no intellectual worth, no capacity to inform and act more to exacerbate ignorance than to educate. What tidbits of news are allowed to fester are an amalgam of contorted half-truths, cheerleading subjective diatribe and porous reporting that is biased in favor of those conglomerates that employ the reporter. This assures that the decisions and interests of the wealthy and powerful are maintained and accepted by the masses.

    What information does not serve the oligarch interest is either suppressed by omission or attacked. Government and corporate interests, such as those prevalent in our occupation of Iraq, prevent realities and truths from surfacing. Instead, propaganda is disseminated that will distort and manipulate the masses into believing exactly what those in power want. Corporate media caters to military interests because in many instances they are part of the military industrial complex. Simply look at General Electric, one of the world's largest military contractors and owner of NBC and its sister stations. Helping manipulate the masses in time of war allows both the corporate media and the government advance their respective interest in subverting public participation and discourse while advancing a perception of consent around the nation. Forming a symbiotic relationship, both now fused into the same two headed beast, one the master of the other, their combined actions undermine the reality of a world not seen by the American public.

    Corporate media, an extension of its mother company, reports pro-business, pro-corporate and anti-labor positions on a constant basis. News bits lean towards those interests that will help the corporation achieve its goals of profit maximization, whether from pushing conservative, right-wing views onto a gullible public or from conditioning audiences towards those views it sees as paramount in securing allegiance. News reports are created not to be right but to have the highest ratings, which in turn means greater profit. The interests of the masses are ignored and exchanged for that debate which will fit the interests of the elite minority. Today, growing reports of an economic recovery linger on the evening news, but can we see it in our lives and in that of our friends and neighbors? No, but good economic news benefits the elite who depend on your wallets to fatten up theirs.

    Many low and middle-class citizens, through propaganda, manipulation and constant bombardment by incessant repetition of sound-bite slogans and visual imagery end up supporting those interests that are contrary to their own socioeconomic well-being. These people have in essence been brainwashed into believing that by assenting to the will and opinion of the elite their lives will be made better. Unfortunately for them, their lives are made worse as the continued exploitation and subjugation of their class continues by the same entities they so fervently believe in. This is a system where the powerful few command the weak majority and where the most important decisions are made to the benefit of the elite at the detriment of the rest.

    Manipulation of the masses has been made easy with the advent of television. Populations, many made ignorant by pervasive and purposeful determents of education (itself a different article altogether), naturally believe and blindly place their confidence in those "trusted" entities they watch on a daily basis. Television is made an all-comforting apparatus as we warmly welcome home the many celebrities we become enraptured with, each manifesting inside us our desire to partake in the small fictional fantasy world they inhabit. We become numb to reality and its consequences, failing to analyze and question the actual world we reside in due to conditioning we have undergone since early childhood.

    Over time we become robots incapable of discerning or even seeking the truth in the news that is provided us. We have been stupefied into believing the garbage blasted from the monitor. We have been trained to never question, always accept and to always flip the remote when our attention runs dry. News is decided on the basis of ratings and on the advertisers paying for commercial spots. Corporate media is but a business where profit is king and where the seeking of customers other corporations buying ad space is of primary importance. We are but a means to an end, mere statistics in the earnings game. Shows are designed not for our enjoyment but to attract and retain as many souls as possible from which to harvest revenue from advertisements and product consumption.

    The corporate media inundates us with promotion, news, gossip, tabloid, rumor and innuendo from those celebrities placed high above the pedestal of sanctimony. Our heroes' daily lives, loves, mistakes and exploits are absorbed into our psyches through the constancy of corporate media's assault on our brainwaves. Hollywood-hero news is designed to distract us from real world events such as war and recession, keeping our minds pre-occupied and away from information that might wake our slumbering conscious. While showcasing for our viewing pleasure the present tribulations of our halo-anointed superstars of the moment, so-called journalists dissect, analyze and comment about hairstyles, appearance and supposed crimes with award winning passion. Yet real, pertinent and important news is given minor and oftentimes erroneous insight. Throughout the channel-horizon we see the same news, headlines and marketing package. The oligarch's WMDs have been unlocked; weapons of mass distraction fester like noxious gases in every state, city and home.

    Repetitive sound-bites, facetious imagery, verbosity and one-sided and frivolous analysis and commentary by pundits, spinsters, newscasters and recycled "experts" is a daily and rampant occurrence on corporate channels, each spitting out talking points and the company lines and opinion, never forcing the viewer to actually think for herself. Relevant news is brushed aside in seconds so that the latest up-to- the-second news on "Wacko Jacko" is aired. Stories that have no relevance other than to stupefy a nation into ignorance are played and replayed, trumping that news that affects most people. We are witnesses to a form of propaganda that is transforming this nation from a once bright-shining pulsar of informed democracy into a dark nebula of nothingness where everything that matters is neglected and all that degenerates and indoctrinates prospers.

    Without an informed and participatory citizenry democracy begins to stumble. Our government is being taken over by the corporate Leviathan and we are indifferent as to its consequences. Crony capitalism is affecting tens of millions through lower wages, layoffs, longer hours, lost savings, tax burdens, lack of health care, increased pollution, perpetual warfare, electoral fraud and the gradual elimination of social services. Yet we remain passive and loyal, ignorant to the Leviathan's war against us. The oligarchy uses its powers of manipulation to divide and alienate us from each other. The divisive and passionate topics of class, race, culture, religion, party affiliation, immigration and education are constantly hammered into our collective mind, announcing as real myths and stereotypes, classifying peoples into groups and imputing on them the necessary ingredients by which society will marginalize and disdain them. We are told our way of life is in peril, that we must vote against our interests in order to preserve that which we most cherish. As usual, fear is used to attain the Leviathan's interests. A united society is a threat to the establishment, which is why we are separated and corralled into distinct clusters, conditioned to segregate ourselves from those deemed different and to fear those labeled a threat to our existence.

    In its never-ending campaign to control us, corporate media instills fear into our daily lives. It has found a gold mine with the war on terror, becoming yet another fear-mongering profiteer and looter of the American public. Abusing our still fragile memories of 9/11, the corporate media unleashes the vast array of products it manufacturers onto us, using fear as its principle marketing tool, hurling diatribes about our supposed imminent threats looming in every city. Consume, consume, consume the Leviathan commands, knowing full well that our fear will eventually succumb to their perpetual warnings of apocalyptic zeal.

    America has become a nation of obedient drones, aimlessly walking empty streets devoid of an informed and participatory population. Our nation is being pillaged in front of our eyes, the government is now in the hands of our masters. Apathetic puppets we have become, free thinking minds we have none. The light that once shined so bright has disappeared in a fictional world of fright. The elite that pull our strings are becoming stronger, objective information is disappearing. The powerful few now control the nation's media and its ideas, and soon our free will and freedom to think as well. Democracy is disappearing, the Leviathan is swallowing us whole little by little, assuring itself of allegiance from a people who once questioned, were once curious and who once had control of this great nation.

     
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  • "Manuel Valenzuela: 'The stupefaction of a nation'" | Login/Create Account | 31 comments
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    Re: Manuel Valenzuela: 'The stupefaction of a nation' (Score: 1)
    by KuhWaver (kuhwaver@useyourmind.net) on Wednesday, December 10 @ 10:37:09 EST
    (User Info)

    This is a thoroughly depressing article. Alas, it is also true.

    It serves as a glaring example of the long odds any Dem presidential candidate would face to counter this tsunami of corporate media sleight of hand.

    [ To reply to this message, you must first logon or register ]


      Re: Manuel Valenzuela: 'The stupefaction of a nation' (Score: 1)
      by helios on Wednesday, December 10 @ 11:32:21 EST
      (User Info)

      There was recently a thread on the message board which asked "Is the Smirking Chimp Relevant ?". The only answer is ,YES . This website is relevant precisely because it is not controlled by the mega-corporations . This site is relevant because it is a forum for the free exchange of ideas and is a participatory democracy of sorts . This site is relevant because it challenges the controlled media and tells the stories they want to keep hidden . This site is relevant because it represents a windbreak against the rising storm of fascism .

      Valenzuela is right . The propaganda and mind-control have exploded . We , who are stll awake have an obligation to sound the alarm .

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      Wow. (Score: 1)
      by reprehensor on Wednesday, December 10 @ 11:46:29 EST
      (User Info)

      Intense. Wouldn't this be nice message to tuck inside your Xmas cards this year?

      God knows people need to hear it.

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        Re: Manuel Valenzuela: 'The stupefaction of a nation' (Score: 1)
        by jreed on Wednesday, December 10 @ 12:09:19 EST
        (User Info)

        BRING BACK THE FAIRNESS IN MEDIA DOCTRINE THAT REAGAN AND GINGRICH TRASHED WHICH BROUGHT ALL THIS ON. IF NOT STOPPED, IT WILL ABSOLUTELY LEAD TO ONE PARTY RULE JUST LIKE WHAT'S HAPPENING IN RUSSIA EVEN AS I SCREAM THIS. We'll know next November whether or not it's too late. My pessimistic self says it is. In the meantime, DON'T LET THEM TAKE OVER THE INTERNET!!!

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          Re: Manuel Valenzuela: 'The stupefaction of a nation' (Score: 1)
          by taz on Wednesday, December 10 @ 12:38:02 EST
          (User Info)

          This is becoming more and more apparent as I talk with people. Especially family members whom I feel should know better. Yet there they are - quoting obvious lies as if they were the unvarnished truth. (and get outraged if challenged) What will it take to wake the citizenry up? What will make them demand truth in the media?

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            Re: Manuel Valenzuela: 'The stupefaction of a nation' (Score: 1)
            by BajanMan on Wednesday, December 10 @ 12:56:46 EST
            (User Info) http://communities.msn.com/PlanetStahl

            Many low and middle-class citizens, through propaganda, manipulation and constant bombardment by incessant repetition of sound-bite slogans and visual imagery end up supporting those interests that are contrary to their own socioeconomic well-being. These people have in essence been brainwashed into believing that by assenting to the will and opinion of the elite their lives will be made better


            It needn't be this way. That it is shows major faults in our system of education and public schools - which have become largely repositories of rote "learning"- rather than critical thinking. The rote learning condition now reinforced with 'teaching to the test' dictates that often determine the extent of funding. Or whether funding will be granted at all.

            So what we have, is a mass production system for churning out corporate slaves, serfs and unquestioning Babbits. Exactly the sort of pseudo-citizen (actually, consumer) the corporate state would desire.

            John Taylor Gatto in his book, 'The Underground History of American Education:

            http://www.johntaylorgatto.com/chapters/index.htm

            notes that in the 19th century, before corporatists took over public education and deformed it to their ends, rhetoric and debate had been part of the regular curriculum. These subjects helped to mold critical, argumentative minds that tested claims against reality - and challenged claims (irrespective of who made them) when they fell short.

            No surprise then that citizens were alert and aware and often the power mongers' worst nightmare, since they were held to account for what they said.

            As Gatto observes, people realized that without this mental protection of critical awareness - afforded by the skills of rhetoric- they were merely "geese waiting to be plucked". (Which was why the corporatists' first mission was to exclude such 'dangerous fare' from education).

            Of course, we behold the product of that decision now, in all the assorted poll permutations foisted upon us by the corporate media. That show any degree of support for BushCo and theirnation eroding, corrupting policies.. A large willing populace with no mental protections, and no ability to discern what they're told, and how inimical it is to their own interests. Hence 'geese waiting to be plucked' in Gatto's words.

            Or sheeple waiting to be shorn.

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              Re: Manuel Valenzuela: 'The stupefaction of a nation' (Score: 1)
              by afors on Wednesday, December 10 @ 13:19:08 EST
              (User Info)

              What an excellent, well-written article. Forgive me for not knowing who Mr Valenzuela is, but his observations are extremely astute. For a frightening "fictional" extrapolation of the scenario he describes we need look no further than Orwell's "1984". There is only one way presently to counter the onslaught - stay informed of the real news (through sites like this), be aware of the corporate influences at play in every aspect of our society, and make free choices wherever it is still possible. Getting everyone to do this is more of a challenge.

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                Re: Manuel Valenzuela: 'The stupefaction of a nation' (Score: 1)
                by Garzoid on Wednesday, December 10 @ 13:29:46 EST
                (User Info)

                What's most distressing is that anyone is supprised or outraged by this article.

                Is this any different than getting McDonalds to stop advertising their salty, fatty, heart-killing foods directly to out 8 year-olds? You tell me!

                It's all about profits. People don't mater. NOTHING ELSE MATTERS.

                Capitalism is great when it works and it's just as bad as anything else when it doesn't.

                That's why the U.S. media including CNN, FOX, MSNBC, NY Times, etc. are now no different than now than Pravda was during the Soviet Union.

                Capitalism, Socialism, Communism, you name it...it doesn't matter. The media is always eventually controlled by the uber-rich and powerful. And the result is always the same. ALL PROPAGANDA ALL THE TIME. Read 1984.

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                  Re: Manuel Valenzuela: 'The stupefaction of a nation' (Score: 1)
                  by regular_joe3_0 (veryPissedOff@theChimp) on Wednesday, December 10 @ 13:48:39 EST
                  (User Info)

                  What tidbits of news are allowed to fester are an amalgam of contorted half-truths, cheerleading subjective diatribe and porous reporting that is biased in favor of those conglomerates that employ the reporter. This assures that the decisions and interests of the wealthy and powerful are maintained and accepted by the masses.

                  Here's just one example from current events:

                  Do you know why seniors in America have to go to Canada to purchase drugs at affordable prices?

                  Because the Canadian government negotiates a deal with the pharmaceutical companies that lowers the prices of drugs in Canada.

                  So why doesn't the US government do that?

                  Because our "representatives" in congress are in the pockets of those same pharmaceutical companies. In fact, the Republicans who wrote the new Medicare bill that Smirk signed on Monday went so far as to write language into the bill that actually prohibits the government from negotiating with the pharmaceutical companies in order to lower drug prices.

                  Given a clear choice, our "representatives" in congress chose to reward the pharmaceutical industry at the public's expense. How can they get away with this outrageous dereliction of duty?

                  Because the media doesn't report the news. It only reports what its corpo-right owners want you to know. They want you to believe that Smirk and his party delivered on a campaign promise of drugs for seniors in Medicare -- big time -- because, if you believe that the Republican party is out there working for you, then you'll be inclined to keep them in power.

                  Was it good legislation? No, the people clearly got fucked.

                  Can we afford it? No, but it's just a drop in the bucket of money we're blowing on Smirk's bogus war in Iraq, again, money that goes directly to the corporations that supported Smirk's war.

                  Will it make our lives better? No, but it will keep drug prices high, and that's what pharmaceutical lobbyists care about. I hope you don't think they give a shit about all those old folks who have to go to Canada to get their medicine.

                  So why do people keep voting for Republicans? Because they're gullible and they just don't know any better. Either that, or their just plain stupid.

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                  Re: Manuel Valenzuela: 'The stupefaction of a nation' (Score: 1)
                  by stonefruit on Wednesday, December 10 @ 14:14:02 EST
                  (User Info)

                  "It bombarded the public unceasingly with enthusiastic reports of the nation's colossal war effort ... Dissenting voices were stilled, either by agreement with the press or by the persuasive action of the agents of the Department of Justice.

                  Intellectual and emotional bombardment aroused Americans to a pitch of enthusiasm. The bombardment came at people from all sides - advertisements, news, volunteer speakers, posters, schools, theaters; millions of homes displayed service flags. The war aims and ideals were continually projected to the eyes and ears of the populace. These high-pressure methods were new at the time, but have become usual since then.

                  The conscious and intelligent manipulation of the organised habits and opinions of the masses is an important element in democratic society. Those who manipulate this unseen mechanism of society constitute an invisible government which is the true ruling power of our government.

                  We are governed, our minds are moulded,our tastes formed, our ideas suggested, largely by men we have never heard of. This is the logical result of the way in which our democratic society is organised."

                  - Edward Bernays, founder of modern propoganda, nephew of Freud

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                    Re: Manuel Valenzuela: 'The stupefaction of a nation' (Score: 1)
                    by czardogs on Wednesday, December 10 @ 14:26:55 EST
                    (User Info) http://www.canadiandemocraticmovement.ca/

                    Greed lust and the new capitalism - makes for a wonderful world if you are rich, connected to the rich or willing to sell your soul to the rich.

                    We live in disgusting times. manipulation of the masses has always been a favourite activity of the wealthy elitists - that is how they stay in their positions.

                    We need to challenge them at every turn and in the end their is only one way to defeat these parasites - dont feed the corporate machine.

                    Turn off the mainstream media, dont shop at walmart or the Gap, bank at credit unions not the big banks, dont eat McDonalds - instead eat at the local ma and pa place, stop buying goods made overseas - it cuts into their profits here and forces them to employ local labour, and always refuse the rush to war!

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                      Re: Manuel Valenzuela: 'The stupefaction of a nation' (Score: 1)
                      by arvosmom on Wednesday, December 10 @ 15:20:03 EST
                      (User Info)

                      The sad truth is that most of the nation wouldn't UNDERSTAND this article, because it is well-written and uses language they would consider unreadable, because the words are big and the paragraphs long. They wouldn't make it past "oligarch," "omnipresent," or "entities." So, tuck it into your Christmas cards if you wish. But I would imagine that those with the edcational background to read it would already believe it without being convinced. Or, I suppose I should say, I HOPE that would be the case.

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                      Re: Manuel Valenzuela: 'The stupefaction of a nation' (Score: 1)
                      by smoky on Wednesday, December 10 @ 16:23:06 EST
                      (User Info)

                      Mr. Valenzuela speaks the truth. I have been reading other articles of his, especially his three part series on Iraq and his take on the military industrial complex. excellent insight. check out the link to one of his articles.

                      http://www.dissidentvoice.org/Articles9/Valenzuela_Corporations.htm

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                        Re: Manuel Valenzuela: 'The stupefaction of a nation' (Score: 1)
                        by Alumbrados on Wednesday, December 10 @ 19:54:27 EST
                        (User Info)

                        Welcome to the New World Order, where the miracle drug* keeps everyone under control.

                        *Miracle drug = U.S. Dollar. Miracle, because regardless of which ever religous ethos any citizen clings to, they all "believe" those little pieces of paper with ink on them are worth something. Drug, because everyone I know, including myself, is addicted to it. Try living without it and see how far you get. Most people live from hit to hit like any other junkie while the "High Priests" of the pushers extols it's value, literally.

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                          Re: Manuel Valenzuela: 'The stupefaction of a nation' (Score: 1)
                          by LastBaron (thelastbaron@yahoo.com) on Wednesday, December 10 @ 20:24:18 EST
                          (User Info)

                          Valenzuela: Without an informed and participatory citizenry, democracy begins to stumble.

                          Groucho Marx: Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies.

                          Cardinal de Retz, 18th cent. French Clergyman Politician: Nothing sways the stupid more than arguments they can't understand.

                          George Mason: When the same man, or set of men, holds the sword and the purse, there is an end of liberty.

                          David Hume, British Writer-philosopher: It is seldom that any freedom is lost all at once.

                          Edmund Burke, British Statesman: The true danger is when liberty is nibbled away, for expedience, and by parts.

                          All of the foregoing very aptly summarize what has been going on in this country since 2000. Benjamin Franklin perhaps sums up best what a large part of the "justification" (post-9/11) for our new Fascist form of existence is:

                          They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither safety nor liberty.

                          Finally, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, German Poet & Writer aptly summarizes: None are so hopelessly enslaved as those who falsely believe they are free....

                          Bush & Cheney = Hitler & Goebbels reborn. Those who will not learn from history are condemned to repeat it.

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                            Re: Manuel Valenzuela: 'The stupefaction of a nation' (Score: 1)
                            by Skinnyman on Wednesday, December 10 @ 22:32:32 EST
                            (User Info)

                            This article is so true.But I don't think it is just our freedom and democracy that we are losing,
                            but it is also a regression of civilization.Think about it.
                            Everything seems to be in favor of violence,from the toys available for children to movies, music
                            and the way we treat other countries. It seems to me to be always this tough in your face attitude.
                            That kind of crap doesn't enhance civilization.

                            Instead of spending all this money on a war with Iraq, we should be spending it on humanitarian efforts.Had we been doing that prior to 9/11, I don't think that disaster would have happened.

                            We all must take a stand and help in any way we can to get these Republicans defeated in the next election.

                            I would like to see a Dem. get in and reverse the Bush agenda. Then I would like to see these criminals get prosecuted.

                            I don't watch tv much anymore because I know how biased it is. I saw a short movie clip of our marines executing an Iraqi. Now you know that will never be shown in the U.S. on any of the big networks.

                            Robert Fisk has a website that is full of pictures of Iraqi wounded and dead. The U.S. has thousands of soldiers that are maimed for life. But you will not see or hear about any of this on tv or radio.

                            It may already be too late, but we cannot just give up. A lot of our veterans of the past have actually fought for our freedoms that we have.
                            It would be a great insult to the men and women who died so we could live in freedom,for us to just give up. WE MUST NOT, AND CANNOT LET THIS GO ON. We must do anything and everything to bring about a change.

                            The Republican view is that it is a ME world. Everything for ME, and to hell with you. How wrong they are. They don't think they have to share this planet with everyone else.That mindset is so evident in Smirk. He didn't intercede in any
                            death penalty while governor of Texas. Now the killing of civilians in Iraq. Threatening the world to do what he wants. He is truly a sorry, sadistic, immature little man.

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                              Re: Manuel Valenzuela: 'The stupefaction of a nation' (Score: 1)
                              by sockeyeBill on Thursday, December 11 @ 03:48:35 EST
                              (User Info)

                              Well now folks, that is not what it is like where I live. Ok, it is a small town of 200 folks up in the high sierra. People have moved here for many reasons. Not the least of which is to get away from all of that 1984 stuff. We all have a degree Of some kind. But we do what we want to do and think the way we want. Gov't really is not part of our lives in the least, except for snow plows. We are all neigbors and we treat each other that way. People up here respect every opinion that others have and do not criticize, other than say well that is bullshit and ask why did you say that. Regards S.

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                              Re: Manuel Valenzuela: 'The stupefaction of a nation' (Score: 1)
                              by farrout on Thursday, December 11 @ 10:19:06 EST
                              (User Info) http://www.farroutart.com/

                              "America has become a nation of obedient drones, aimlessly walking empty streets devoid of an informed and participatory population. Our nation is being pillaged in front of our eyes, the government is now in the hands of our masters."

                              And. . .it is purposeful. An enslaved population is far easier to manipulate. Impoverishing a nation accomplishes several things but the worst is the psychological numbing. Most of us would do absolutely anything to feed and/or house our selves, our families.

                              The so-called threat of terrorism HAS been an effective drug. This coupled with thought impoverishment examined in this article and the availability of real goods may create a sort of lawless state. Feeling threatened, many will beg the government to protect them effectively creating a police state. Will you or I be complicit in this coming act of treason against the constitution?

                              What ARE we to do about? Besides turning off the tv, we can read, read, write, write and fight, fight, every step of the way.





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                                Re: Manuel Valenzuela: 'The stupefaction of a nation' (Score: 1)
                                by TangiEllis on Thursday, December 11 @ 14:02:37 EST
                                (User Info)

                                Imagine my surprise to come across this article...its like Mr. Valenzuela was reading my mind and put it into print. My husband and I are WTC survivors, having worked for Borders Books and Music in WTC 5. Since then, we have seen our country following in fear behind the Bush administration's quest for world domination. We've been appalled and angry to have our experience used as an excuse to violate the rights of our fellow human beings, to take away our constitutional rights in the country, and to bully us into submission for an administration that has and never will have our best interests at heart. We sat back in horror as we watched the media point the finger at first Bin Laudin, then Saddam Hussein for 9/11....then wondered why people aren't angry because Bin Laudin has never been found (and isn't it funny how another one of those stupid tapes from him always surfaces whenever questions about this war on terrorism surface?) and then our country stormed into Iraq after a dictator that had nothing to do with 9/11 on faulty evidence....then are astounded that NOBODY seems to question where the hell the WMDs are in Iraq that Saddam supposedly had. I am forever grateful for websites like this one that allow freedom of thought and give us reasons to keep going on with our struggles. Here in Rhode Island we have companies that have not bothered to give their employees raises in over four years due to bogus union disputes (namely the Providence Journal Company that I was once employed by) and not one of these people even bother to question why they are working themselves to the bone for little or nothing. I am a supporter of this website. I'm sending the link to all who know me and I'll try my hardest to get you donations because WE NEED THINGS LIKE THIS!!!
                                Much love,
                                Tangi

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                                  Re: Manuel Valenzuela: 'The stupefaction of a nation' (Score: 1)
                                  by gladiator on Friday, December 12 @ 00:37:05 EST
                                  (User Info)

                                  I, too, really like this article, very well written using wonderful adjectives, never used by the ignorant media, to define this catastrophic time in America's life.

                                  I ended my working life of 38 years by being fired by a big HMO that I worked for 5 years ago. During the 90's, I became more and more disgusted by companies and their treatment of workers. I began to question stupid policies, blatant discriminatory practices, and even dared talk back to a company CEO who said my notes were too detailed. This was delivered to me by one of his subordinates. I told "subordinate" to tell "CEO" to come tell me himself what he had a problem with. He apparently didn't (too afraid) and I was spared... for awhile. I knew my number would be up soon, but I figured the cost for freedom was well worth it!

                                  What's my point? As many of you already know, the big fascist take over began in earnest, again, about 20 years ago. And now, as the article said, it is almost complete. As soon as I turned to the web in earnest a few months back, I only very selectively watch TV programming; I've quit watching almost everything. Our local newspapers, owned by Dean Singleton bye the by, has barely any news because there are pages and pages and pages of ADs! Any time there is a snowstorm anywhere, the networks go nuts over them...and who knows what real news slides into oblivion.

                                  WE MUST DO ALL WE CAN to get this administration out; it will still take years to undo the corruption, especially if the congress is still controlled by Republicans, not to mention the Supreme Court.

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                                    Re: Manuel Valenzuela: 'The stupefaction of a nation' (Score: 1)
                                    by jackalope on Friday, December 12 @ 08:54:02 EST
                                    (User Info)

                                    "Apathetic puppets we have become, free thinking minds we have none. The light that once shined so bright has disappeared in a fictional world of fright." True. There coexists a nonfictional world of fright for thinking folks who aren't attached to strings. This morning, for a time, I couldn't access smirkingchimp. My not-so-paranoid flash of fear had reasonable cause.

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                                      Re: Manuel Valenzuela: 'The stupefaction of a nation' (Score: 1)
                                      by buggin on Friday, December 12 @ 19:40:56 EST
                                      (User Info)

                                      This is the most comprehensive explanation of the lack of knowledge ob the American public I have seen. It is frightenly true, I have wondered how
                                      people can be so blind as not to see through all the bull; thanks to the article, its crystal clear. It should be distributed in language that all those who read newspapers can understand.

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