The background to the oligarch’s playbook to take over America

So many executive orders, so much twitter. What to do? Well, discuss it here for one...

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The background to the oligarch’s playbook to take over America

#1 Post by TrueTexan » Thu May 31, 2018 8:37 pm

Here is an article that gives the background where the likes of the Koch Bros got their ideas about the oligarchy takeover of the US. Well worth the read to know where we are headed if the oligarchs get a chance.
Ask people to name the key minds that have shaped America’s burst of radical right-wing attacks on working conditions, consumer rights and public services, and they will typically mention figures like free market-champion Milton Friedman, libertarian guru Ayn Rand, and laissez-faire economists Friedrich Hayek and Ludwig von Mises.

James McGill Buchanan is a name you will rarely hear unless you’ve taken several classes in economics. And if the Tennessee-born Nobel laureate were alive today, it would suit him just fine that most well-informed journalists, liberal politicians, and even many economics students have little understanding of his work.

The reason? Duke historian Nancy MacLean contends that his philosophy is so stark that even young libertarian acolytes are only introduced to it after they have accepted the relatively sunny perspective of Ayn Rand. (Yes, you read that correctly). If Americans really knew what Buchanan thought and promoted, and how destructively his vision is manifesting under their noses, it would dawn on them how close the country is to a transformation most would not even want to imagine, much less accept.

That is a dangerous blind spot, MacLean argues in a meticulously researched book, Democracy in Chains, a finalist for the National Book Award in Nonfiction. While Americans grapple with Donald Trump’s chaotic presidency, we may be missing the key to changes that are taking place far beyond the level of mere politics. Once these changes are locked into place, there may be no going back.
https://www.rawstory.com/2018/05/meet-e ... r-america/

People didn’t believe that Hilter laid out his game plan in Mein Kampf. This economist laid out in his writings the blueprint for what is happening now.
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Re: The background to the oligarch’s playbook to take over America

#2 Post by MaxWyatt » Mon Jun 11, 2018 10:50 pm

Absolutely fabulous article. I didn't even know who James McGill Buchanan was. His economic philosophy is literally evil and I don't say that lightly. It's a philosophy, NOT economic theory because it's ideologically driven, not even data driven.
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Re: The background to the oligarch’s playbook to take over America

#3 Post by ErikO » Mon Jun 11, 2018 10:53 pm

I figure they just read the history of the Robber Barons.

This is not new here and has been the de facto method of control since before the Mine Wars.
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Re: The background to the oligarch’s playbook to take over America

#4 Post by MaxWyatt » Mon Jun 11, 2018 10:56 pm

Not new, perhaps, but repackaged and refined for our era. And very salient to what has been happening for the past couple of decades.
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Re: The background to the oligarch’s playbook to take over America

#5 Post by SubRosa » Tue Jun 12, 2018 1:16 am

The pendulum swings. It has now swung to record right heights, and when it heads back give plenty of room for the rolling heads...

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Re: The background to the oligarch’s playbook to take over America

#6 Post by Elmo » Tue Jun 12, 2018 9:53 am

Looks like an interesting article. I'll read it more closely. The assumption by these oligarchs is that democracy must be constrained because ultimately the many will vote the wealth away from the few. I too believe that is where the trajectory of democracy ultimately leads, but I celebrate and hasten it.
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Re: The background to the oligarch’s playbook to take over America

#7 Post by VodoundaVinci » Tue Jun 12, 2018 12:29 pm

"MacLean is not the only scholar to sound the alarm that the country is experiencing a hostile takeover that is well on its way to radically, and perhaps permanently, altering the society. Peter Temin, former head of the MIT economics department, INET grantee, and author of The Vanishing Middle Class, as well as economist Gordon Lafer of the University of Oregon and author of The One Percent Solution, have provided eye-opening analyses of where America is headed and why. MacLean adds another dimension to this dystopian big picture, acquainting us with what has been overlooked in the capitalist right wing’s playbook.

She observes, for example, that many liberals have missed the point of strategies like privatization. Efforts to “reform” public education and Social Security are not just about a preference for the private sector over the public sector, she argues. You can wrap your head around, even if you don’t agree. Instead, MacLean contents, the goal of these strategies is to radically alter power relations, weakening pro-public forces and enhancing the lobbying power and commitment of the corporations that take over public services and resources, thus advancing the plans to dismantle democracy and make way for a return to oligarchy. The majority will be held captive so that the wealthy can finally be free to do as they please, no matter how destructive."
Finally someone with credibility says the same thing I have been trying to convince my Liberal and Conservative Friends of since 2007 - this is not a "phase" America is going thru. This is a hostile takeover by The Oligarchy. If you have not read this article and researched it's basic concepts you need to do so. This is a permanent change in America and it is the reason I keep saying we can't vote our ways out of this. The Global Oligarchy owns and operates America now and it is not by accident nor will it be remedied by choicess made at the polls.

We're in big ass trouble here folks. All the money and power is in the hands of .01% of the population and it's by design, not because of the way we voted. America is the victim of a hostile takeover and The Orange Stain and all his buddies are one of "Them" and could care less if we all just fade away or die of starvation, lack of education, or a lack of medical care.
We have been had, conquered, purchased, and enslaved. And where this is going we do not want to go.

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Re: The background to the oligarch’s playbook to take over America

#8 Post by YankeeTarheel » Tue Jun 12, 2018 5:05 pm

I actually knew who Buchanan was, because his Nobel Prize put George Mason U on the map, where the University of Virginia hadn't had a presence to counter the University of Maryland, Georgetown U, George Washington U, American U, and Howard U. I didn't know his "public choice" theories were really an obscure, intellectual-sounding argument for what I've been saying all along: Guys like the Kochs, the Murdochs, and the Mercers, et al, all are pushing for a modern version of FEUDALISM, where we are all serfs, totally at their mercy, and they have unlimited power to do anything they want, limited only by the powers of each other. In GOT, Martin describes a feudal lord who demands the right to rape any woman prior to her marriage. When one peasant marries his love anyway, he hangs the man and rapes the woman under his swinging body...as a lesson. Another lord, when a peasant who stole from the temple is brought to him, summarily orders 7 fingers cut off. Vlad the Impaler novelized.

But that's what we face. We've seen it before, in the Company Towns of the late 19th and early 20th century, where people were literally enslaved and tortured or murdered if they objected or tried to leave. The Pinkerton Agency and others got wealthy working as the tycoons' thugs. We don't remember it, but our parents did. And what was Jim Crow but exactly that? Share-croppers weren't much better off than slaves, still beholden to the wealthy landowners and their tame courts.

This is how Europe ran from the Fall of Rome until the Enlightenment. It is how the Middle East ran from...well Mesopotamia and ancient Egypt. It's how China ran from 5000 years ago to....well, to today. It's how Japan ran for centuries.

The Freedom and Liberty and TRULY valuing the Individual is a very new and very fragile thing, easily destroyed as we have seen internationally in the last 20 years and in the last century. Through it all, we in the "liberal West" have managed to fend off its intended destruction by these oligarchs. They've funded and pushed propaganda to manipulate support by the people without them knowing they were enslaving themselves.

It's been coming for decades, and, on that horrible, awful night in November of 2016, the oligarchs won.............................................and I decided I needed to arm myself to try, to attempt to be able to protect my family when the worst happens.
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Re: The background to the oligarch’s playbook to take over America

#9 Post by inomaha » Tue Jun 12, 2018 5:31 pm

My biggest problem is the left thinks their party isn't run by the same; as evidenced by these sorts of articles that focus on certain select wealthy while ignoring the rest. It's not like the people in charge at the DNC were going to allow Bernie Sanders to take over. Not the people we think run the DNC but the people who are actually in charge of the DNC, own the media corporations, are consolidating the internet, etc. It's easy to write an article pointing out the "other side" while keeping the reader blind to the fact there aren't really sides once you're in the 0.01 percent.

Obama didn't go after bankers after he was elected, he continued the process of bailing them out with our tax dollars. Clinton held special private fundraisers with them, blocking noise and recording so the content of the meetings remained out of the public. The oligarchs have been playing the game much longer then 2016 and they only sides they want are those they choose to pit us against each other and distract the general population. They donate to both sides, favor one or the other some, but hedge their bets. They take turns at the trough with their paid for politicians directing the flow their direction long enough to maximize their return on investment.

Oddly, one of the best ways to shield their influence over our lives is to reduce the size of the government so they don't have a built in mechanism for controlling markets, politicians, purse strings, the military, and to enrich themselves on taxpayer largess.

I think of them more like the two rich guys in the movie Trading Places were they mess with other people's lives for fun while getting rich at their expense. The two guys working for them are the left and right and won't win until we get smart and work together.
Last edited by inomaha on Thu Jun 14, 2018 4:24 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: The background to the oligarch’s playbook to take over America

#10 Post by YankeeTarheel » Tue Jun 12, 2018 6:00 pm

Nah, the leaders on the Left are far more parochial and short-sighted about how they view power, not part of an over-arching conspiracy to shut down all the liberties we know. They just want to hold onto their taste of power.
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Re: The background to the oligarch’s playbook to take over America

#11 Post by rascally » Tue Jun 12, 2018 9:32 pm

The "leaders" you see are not the leaders. They are the Muppets, the visible face. The actual leaders are not all that visible, they are behind the green screen, which is provided by the media...

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Re: The background to the oligarch’s playbook to take over America

#12 Post by VodoundaVinci » Wed Jun 13, 2018 6:59 am

I'm upset that out Republic has been duped and is now run by people with more money than God but it was predicted by the founding fathers. This is how Governments go - they are formed of the ashes of a failed system of government nd eventually over years they become worn out and abused and transform into what they were designed to replace. They all fail eventually as history shows. No Surprise...sucks but it's normal.

The question I have no answer to is "Now what?"

How's this gonna get fixed? That's my dilemma. I have 30ish years to go before it won't matter to me but I have Nieces and Nephews and their children and I love them dearly. What about them? How do we relieve them of the slavery that's coming? That's my question - what is to be done about this?

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Re: The background to the oligarch’s playbook to take over America

#13 Post by YankeeTarheel » Wed Jun 13, 2018 8:11 am

VodoundaVinci wrote:
Wed Jun 13, 2018 6:59 am
I'm upset that out Republic has been duped and is now run by people with more money than God but it was predicted by the founding fathers. This is how Governments go - they are formed of the ashes of a failed system of government nd eventually over years they become worn out and abused and transform into what they were designed to replace. They all fail eventually as history shows. No Surprise...sucks but it's normal.

The question I have no answer to is "Now what?"

How's this gonna get fixed? That's my dilemma. I have 30ish years to go before it won't matter to me but I have Nieces and Nephews and their children and I love them dearly. What about them? How do we relieve them of the slavery that's coming? That's my question - what is to be done about this?

VooDoo
I hear you. My older son looks at me and says "What kind of world is your generation leaving mine?" He doesn't blame me, knowing I've tried to fight it, but he's absolutely right. We are devolving back into the same medieval feudalism that has plagued the world since before the first civilizations arose 9 or 10,000 years ago.
"Fascism comes along when the rich people get the generals to help them stay in control." -- Woody Guthrie
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Re: The background to the oligarch’s playbook to take over America

#14 Post by Bisbee » Thu Jun 14, 2018 2:29 am

Hey man, democracy ain't no spectator sport. If anything the younger generation are the ones finding this out. But they will have a beef with the aging hippies who appears to have sold them out with Whole Foods feel good capitlism BS.

But don't worry YT. We are not devolving back so far, maybe only back to the 1920's before anti-trust regulations. The USA has always been an unfinished experiment in self-governance. We are right on track for the next stage of political/economic evolution. It just takes a little more suffering for people to wake up in defense of what they value and wrestle power back to their hands.
"It is better to be violent, if there is violence in our hearts, than to put on the cloak of non-violence to cover impotence. There is hope for a violent man to become non-violent. There is no such hope for the impotent." -Gandhi

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Re: The background to the oligarch’s playbook to take over America

#15 Post by YankeeTarheel » Thu Jun 14, 2018 8:18 am

Bisbee wrote:
Thu Jun 14, 2018 2:29 am
Hey man, democracy ain't no spectator sport. If anything the younger generation are the ones finding this out. But they will have a beef with the aging hippies who appears to have sold them out with Whole Foods feel good capitlism BS.

But don't worry YT. We are not devolving back so far, maybe only back to the 1920's before anti-trust regulations. The USA has always been an unfinished experiment in self-governance. We are right on track for the next stage of political/economic evolution. It just takes a little more suffering for people to wake up in defense of what they value and wrestle power back to their hands.
I hope, with everything I have, you're right, BB. I fear, to the soles of my feet, that you may be wrong. That's why I became a gun-owner.
"Fascism comes along when the rich people get the generals to help them stay in control." -- Woody Guthrie
My son says: "Don't argue with an idiot. They'll only drag you down to their level and beat you with experience!" -- YT

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Re: The background to the oligarch’s playbook to take over America

#16 Post by VodoundaVinci » Thu Jun 14, 2018 3:23 pm

Bisbee wrote:
Thu Jun 14, 2018 2:29 am
......Snip - The USA has always been an unfinished experiment in self-governance. We are right on track for the next stage of political/economic evolution. It just takes a little more suffering for people to wake up in defense of what they value and wrestle power back to their hands.
I adore the positive note - please expand on how you think we can wrestle the power back into our hands? This is my dilemma - I can't envision how we can come back from this now with the entire Government owned and operated by people who have more money at their disposal than the rest of US. What's The Plan to fix this? How do we regain The Power when entities can give unlimited amounts of untraceable cash (purchase/bribe politicians and officials) legally?

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Re: The background to the oligarch’s playbook to take over America

#17 Post by TrueTexan » Thu Jun 14, 2018 3:58 pm

Bisbee wrote:
Thu Jun 14, 2018 2:29 am
Hey man, democracy ain't no spectator sport. If anything the younger generation are the ones finding this out. But they will have a beef with the aging hippies who appears to have sold them out with Whole Foods feel good capitlism BS.

But don't worry YT. We are not devolving back so far, maybe only back to the 1920's before anti-trust regulations. The USA has always been an unfinished experiment in self-governance. We are right on track for the next stage of political/economic evolution. It just takes a little more suffering for people to wake up in defense of what they value and wrestle power back to their hands.
The Anti-trust Laws came in in the early 1900s with Teddy Roosevelt. The next to last good Republican President, last was Eisenhower. The Oligarchy wants to take us at least back to the Gilded Age and would prefer to go back to the times of the British East India Companyor even the city states of Medici Italy.
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Re: The background to the oligarch’s playbook to take over America

#18 Post by methodmissing » Thu Jun 14, 2018 4:31 pm

VodoundaVinci wrote:
Thu Jun 14, 2018 3:23 pm
Bisbee wrote:
Thu Jun 14, 2018 2:29 am
......Snip - The USA has always been an unfinished experiment in self-governance. We are right on track for the next stage of political/economic evolution. It just takes a little more suffering for people to wake up in defense of what they value and wrestle power back to their hands.
I adore the positive note - please expand on how you think we can wrestle the power back into our hands? This is my dilemma - I can't envision how we can come back from this now with the entire Government owned and operated by people who have more money at their disposal than the rest of US. What's The Plan to fix this? How do we regain The Power when entities can give unlimited amounts of untraceable cash (purchase/bribe politicians and officials) legally?

VooDoo
We live in an age where we have allowed one of the three freedoms to dominate the other two. Property, money, free association, labor, wages, debts and capital of all kinds has overtaken Life and Liberty as the defining Freedom of the world. The more Property, the more Freedom, and the other freedoms be damned. It's insidious because the accumulation of Property begets the accumulation of Property, and where there isn't enough to meet the needs of one, a corporation can be formed that exists only to perpetuate the growth of its own Property.

Liberty doesn't get more liberal, nor does life get more lively. But in the pursuit of Property, corporations and oligarchs would happily deprive others of both (by indebting and poisoning (polluting and corrupting the environment)) for their enrichment.

The solution is redistribution of wealth. The concentration of power leads to corruption and tyranny. Concentration is the root cause, and Tyranny the outcome, so deal with the root cause by reducing the concentration of power, which is wealth. The challenge is accomplishing this with minimal damage to the Life and Liberty of the citizens, including those whose wealth is being redistributed.

Beyond that... a more civilized age where individuals themselves voluntarily reject the temptations of excess property.

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Re: The background to the oligarch’s playbook to take over America

#19 Post by Bisbee » Thu Jun 14, 2018 6:23 pm

"Liberty doesn't get more liberal, nor does life get more lively. But in the pursuit of Property, corporations and oligarchs would happily deprive others of both (by indebting and poisoning (polluting and corrupting the environment)) for their enrichment."
That's very powerful MM!

The fallacy that corporations and oligarchs blindly operate on is the belief that their wealth magically separates them from society or the environment. Insofar as they ruin society through policies like poverty wages and the environment through pollution, the bubble of security that their wealth/poverty provides is terribly limited to the point of being illusory. Yet do they choose to ignore this because they have small minds and are myopic? No, I believe they do this because they are human and afraid to change even when the preponderance of evidence shows them they must.

That doesn't let the rest of society off the hook. If there is something to be said about the average American letting the rich and powerful get away with every injustice (the greatest and most recent example being the lack of charges and convictions of Investment Bankers post 2008) it is that we are also caught up in the lie that pursuit of Money and Property solve our ills.
“Socialism never took root in America because the poor see themselves not as an exploited proletariat but as temporarily embarrassed millionaires.”
John Steinbecks famous quote kinda bookends the American myth popularized by books of Horatio Alger which illustrated how through luck, pluck, and hard work you can achieve anything you set your mind to. Somehow the truth that Alger wrote about always simply framed around just money and only applied to the individual and never explored in the context of the collective for social good which is why the truth is reduced to a mere platitude. Today we are still struggling to understand the truth of the message of what we can achieve through creative intent.

The reason, VV, TT, YT, why I do feel optimistic is because I don't fear suffering as much as i fear ignorance to the lessons that suffering is trying to teach. It is both a spiritual and scientific view to recognize that no leap in evolution ever took place without a reason or credible threat to remain within the status quo. Animals would never have crawled out of the relative womb of the aquatic life to take a painful gulp of air if the large inland seas weren't drying up. In this same way, the unions and organized labor would never have been necessary except that factories were terrible, unsafe working environments paying slave-wages. In every instance the threat to our safety and survival provided the impetus to leap into the next stage of our evolution.

That second example I provided (and every challenge we currently face) are first and foremost calling for an evolution of human thought. A change in consciousness and viewpoint. Doesn't seem that hard but it is. Throughout human history are peppered examples where people often chose death before they can change their minds to see the wider truth. For the rich it has to do with the human ego and the "small death" it goes through when faced with necessary change. One amusing story describing this is egoic death leading to transformation is in the book, "How Starbucks Saved My Life: A Son of Privilege Learns to Live Like Everyone Else," by Michael Gates Gill.

But equally true is the underdog who must realize and claim his place of dignity alongside others to "fight the good fight" without relying on some strongman to tell them who to blame so they can avoid the difficult struggle of growing in consciousness. Because nobody can expect to know good action until they can learn to discern for themselves what they need, why they need it, and how to get it while also considering their neighbors. Nobody can be trusted to act correctly if they don't have the courage or intelligence to follow The Golden Rule. You'd think that would be obvious but every one of our social, environmental challenges stem from a compromise of The Golden Rule by those who had the power to set policy. Which is why the power to decide policy is safer when it is in the hands of more and more people. But also why our society is being called to grow in consciousness and courage.

As a Progressive, I don't worry that poor, ignorant Conservative Christians will destroy America. I fear that poor CC's and poor Liberal Zealots will continue to fight each other, effectively handing over the wealth of America before both are conscious of the part their own fears play to furthering the hatred and division sowed by wealthy elites that have always, always cynically employed tactics of divide and conquer while they quietly broker back room deals with small-minded politicians to funnel more wealth/power to their pockets. But before the average American can start to understand what they share with their neighbors, they have to develop the courage to face/understand their own fears... The reasons why it is hard for them to follow the Golden Rule is the same reason why they are easily fooled to fight amongst themselves.

Because the basis of the challenge we are collectively facing requires greater self-knowledge, I suspect merely the redistribution of wealth will never work to bring peace and stability to society (sorry MM). Or probably more accurate to turn that around and say that redistribution of wealth in America (or the world) won't happen until the populace wakes up to their condition and without knowing the reasons why we deserve to fight for and keep something, we will always be susceptible and weak for being cheated of it in the future.

""Liberty doesn't get more liberal, nor does life get more lively," and yet it could be argued that our incessant pursuit of Property (and Money) is to make up for the lack of Life and Liberty in our hearts (considering the number of wealthy people who commit suicide because they still feel trapped by their "life circumstance"). Which is why I say part of the challenge we face is actually to embody our Life and our Liberty given that we can't make more of it. This is foremost a challenge of the heart: To Be is a matter of expanding our consciousness. That may be the hardest thing to do for some people but quite literally it takes no time at all.
"It is better to be violent, if there is violence in our hearts, than to put on the cloak of non-violence to cover impotence. There is hope for a violent man to become non-violent. There is no such hope for the impotent." -Gandhi

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Re: The background to the oligarch’s playbook to take over America

#20 Post by VodoundaVinci » Fri Jun 15, 2018 12:38 pm

That's what I was afraid of....I don't see any redistribution of wealth nor any fundamental enlightenment or higher thought process coming in the near future. I agree that we need to change the way we think about Life, Liberty, and The Pursuit as well as stop seeing "stuff" as the Means and Way to happiness or human enlightenment. I agree that we need to redistribute our resources based on need - I firmly believe that we have the resources to feed, house, clothe, educate and medicate virtually *everyone* but not if .01% simply *must* have 1 million X what someone else has to be fulfilled.

I don't see a way of making that happen is what I'm saying. I think the Oligarchy will see millions of US dead before it gets redistributed and we start thinking/living on a higher plane of existence.

I don't see a viable Plan - I don't see a Way. WE all know what needs to be done and how it needs to change but how do we force that change in the face of 21st Century Oligarchy Owned and Operated reality?

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Re: The background to the oligarch’s playbook to take over America

#21 Post by Bisbee » Fri Jun 15, 2018 4:28 pm

I learned a lot about perspective when overcoming PTSD without drugs with the help of a psychologist. I learned a term," catastrophising," which is to unconsciously make a challenging situation into the worst case scenario to further demoralize ourselves even as the story in our heads never actually comes to pass. Saying that Milliions of Americans will die before anything changes... that's catastrophising. When recovering from PTSD, I learned through meditation to watch the mind and avoid catastrophising but also to harness my attention to the goings on of each moment, capture information that can help to address the immediate challenges I face.

First and foremost, it all starts with the mind. For example, even if we have an actual flat tire and are physically stuck on the side of the freeway, different people will come up with different solutions when they focus their attention on the challenge at hand. Solutions possibly including changing the tire with a spare, calling AAA, stand next to the car with the hood up looking sexy. Each person has different strengths to apply, different resources available to solve the problem at hand. But the person who has an emotional breakdown in the car with the flat tire is the one who misses the fact that potential help are driving past them at every moment.

If you pay attention to the world right now, you may notice the wonderful thing about our system of Federal, State, and Local governments is resiliency and "wide net" cast to capture the variety of resources available in the populace. Pruitt's decision to relax the emissions guidelines was immediately met with CA saying it is standing firm, challenging auto-makers to make two different models of the same car if they wish to relax emissions standards and still sell in CA. This week WA state announced statewide net-neutrality laws the moment Ajit Pai lead the FCC to repeal it. Several states are following Washington's footsteps. The will of the people expressed through self-governance is creative and resilient in our country.

And government is only half the story. Internet technology now is so democratic in nature that more and more people are not only able to connect with friends in several nations/cultures around the world, learn from and cross pollinate ideas, but also share their creativity and work as well. The confluence of the two is naturally affecting Big Business and financial resources who's greatest weakness is that they are often only interested in the Bottom Line, regardless of how they make it. One age the cotton industry turned profit through black slavery. Now if Hane's advertises they proudly use cotton picked by a particular racial group (much less slavery) they'd be shamed and boycotted into closing shop. That's just one obvious example of how much power people exhibit now because of the Internet.

This by Tim Leary in "Flashbacks: A Personal and Cultural History of an Era":
"Turn on" meant go within to activate your neural and genetic equipment. Become sensitive to the many and various levels of consciousness and the specific triggers that engage them. Drugs were one way to accomplish this end. "Tune in" meant interact harmoniously with the world around you – externalize, materialize, express your new internal perspectives. "Drop out" suggested an active, selective, graceful process of detachment from involuntary or unconscious commitments. "Drop Out" meant self-reliance, a discovery of one's singularity, a commitment to mobility, choice, and change. Unhappily my explanations of this sequence of personal development were often misinterpreted to mean "Get stoned and abandon all constructive activity".
Dr. Leary has since reworked his famous phrase to suggest joining the cyberdelic counterculture: "turn on, boot up, jack in"

When we ask, "How?" make sure it isn't a hidden form of catastrophising rather than paying attention to the multitude of opportunities to engage the challenge that is flying by us ever moment we fail to see them. Because the answer to "How?" is not a single answer. There are so many creative how's out there it is impossible for anyone to compile a list. I have my how and I am happily engaging in it right now as I write about broadening our mental perspective for seeing what is possible. Pay attention to our own minds to not aid the money-grubbers to their pathetically narrow-minded and boring plans for world domination in thinking we are helpless or unimaginative in our response. Human psychology, the foundation of everything we see and do in the world, and human science and spirituality, pushing the limits of what we can know or imagine to be possible. These are my paths of interest. There are so many paths to undermining greed and stupidity in the world, growing creativity, joy, and meaning. Spend some time to quiet the mind. Only then can you harness it to find your path(s).

Here's a fun example of what I mean by relaxing and expanding your perspective:

Image
"It is better to be violent, if there is violence in our hearts, than to put on the cloak of non-violence to cover impotence. There is hope for a violent man to become non-violent. There is no such hope for the impotent." -Gandhi

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Re: The background to the oligarch’s playbook to take over America

#22 Post by VodoundaVinci » Fri Jun 15, 2018 9:50 pm

Clearly I am not on the same plane as you are Spiritually or Intellectually. I bow to your greater wisdom and perspective. I'll retire to my corner now and try to patiently and peacefully await my fate.

I'm sure it will all work out.

VooDoo

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Re: The background to the oligarch’s playbook to take over America

#23 Post by YankeeTarheel » Fri Jun 15, 2018 10:08 pm

VodoundaVinci wrote:
Fri Jun 15, 2018 9:50 pm
Clearly I am not on the same plane as you are Spiritually or Intellectually. I bow to your greater wisdom and perspective. I'll retire to my corner now and try to patiently and peacefully await my fate.

I'm sure it will all work out.

VooDoo
Absolutely! And follow the ancient advice, at least in spirit: "Keep your powder dry!"
"Fascism comes along when the rich people get the generals to help them stay in control." -- Woody Guthrie
My son says: "Don't argue with an idiot. They'll only drag you down to their level and beat you with experience!" -- YT

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Re: The background to the oligarch’s playbook to take over America

#24 Post by Bisbee » Sat Jun 16, 2018 12:02 am

Retiring to the corner to peacefully await your fate is not the same thing as paying attention to know when is the right moment to strike and knowing what that is.

It galls me that the folks here in the Southwest who get into Zen Buddhism or some other meditation based spirituality often pursue it as a kind of anesthetic: they want to be free of their problems and imagine spirituality will lead them to "rise above it all". That's just weak.

I often remind them that their own teachers in paintings are bug-eyed and furious. Their texts repeatedly point to the fact that there is no time to waste, that enlightenment is the goal every time you sit on the cushion. I'm the one that argues warriors Japan face each other in duels and warfare ready to kill or die without fear because of meditation and self knowledge through the practice of Zen.

The attitude should be attentive as in "Keeping the powder dry," or as in Luke 12:36 "...like servants waiting for their master to return from a wedding banquet, so that when he comes and knocks they can immediately open the door for him." The spiritual practice is to recognize when something calls us to act, develop the steel to go all in when that happens, altogether different that believing that everything is going to hell in a hand-basket and we should meditate to be OK with that.
"It is better to be violent, if there is violence in our hearts, than to put on the cloak of non-violence to cover impotence. There is hope for a violent man to become non-violent. There is no such hope for the impotent." -Gandhi

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Re: The background to the oligarch’s playbook to take over America

#25 Post by SubRosa » Sat Jun 16, 2018 1:45 am

Excellent thoughts, Bisbee.

Indeed the tough part is to remain calm & collected whilst aware of the present & prepared for the future.

Getting worked up tends to attract attention, getting the good work done quietly and efficiently is good use of one's time.

"Prepping", an oft- and over-used term is still a valid activity and likely to become more work now that the Reprobates are the majority.

As they say; run silent, run deep. Deep state, even!

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