Content Advisory

Content Advisory: Whereas: this blog occasionally employs "colorful language,"

may also occasionally contain implicit and explicit references to

tobacco, alcohol, and other substances, as well as sexuality,

and favors logic over dogma, any or all of which may offend some,

and whereas I may occasionally give disclaimers,

but I do NOT give "trigger warnings,"

therefore, be it resolved that: this blog is intended for mature readers.

However, this blog is not age-restricted.



Monday, October 31, 2016

The Enemy Within




The Enemy Within,
or,
Another Symptom
of Monopolistic Dualism,
by Liviana (Giovanna L.)


"Wer mit Ungeheuern kämpft, mag zusehn, dass er nicht dabei zum Ungeheuer wird. Und wenn du lange in einen Abgrund blickst, blickt der Abgrund auch in dich hinein."
~ Friedrich Nietzsche, Jenseits von Gut und Böse, Aphorismus 146

"Who with monsters fights, should see that he in the process not become a monster. And when you long into an abyss gaze, then gazes the abyss also into you."
~ Friedrich Nietzsche, Beyond Good and Evil, Aphorism 146
(my translation)


"In Italia, i fascisti si dividono in due categorie:  i fascisti e gli antifascisti."
~ Ennio Flaiano

"In Italy, the fascists divide themselves into two categories: the fascists and the antifascists."
~ Ennio Flaiano
(my translation)


Preface

"Monopolistic Dualism" is a term whose origin is rightly attributed to one who used to go by the "tribal name" Crommán mac Nessa, one of the founders and leaders of a movement which has at times been called "an Rian Sinnsearach" or "in Róen Sinserda" (the first is Gaelic and the second is Old Irish, and both mean "the Ancestral Way"), among other names, mac Nessa's own expression of which has sometimes been called "Ivernian Heathen Revivalism."  His work now survives only in privately-held copies and in earlier versions preserved at the Internet Archive.

Writing in the late 1990s and early 2000s, mac Nessa used the term to refer to a "religious tradition" which in its main expressions teaches dualism, both metaphysically and ethically (although its theologians often deny the dualism, realizing that dualism is metaphysically unsatisfactory and ethically depressing;  nevertheless, the "sacred" texts of the religions which derive from this tradition do express rather obvious dualistic ideas, and the laypeople of the religions think in dualistic terms, even if this dualism be "merely" a form of what has sometimes been called "External Dualism" or a form of what might be called "Actual Dualism" [as distinct from "Real Dualism"] or "Temporary Dualism" or "Finite Dualism"), and which insists, in each of the main religions which are its expressions, that that particular religion is "the one true and only way," regarding other religions of the same tradition as wrong, and consequently advocates for what mac Nessa pointed out was "religious imperialism," that is, efforts to convert others, whether by attempted persuasion or by force.  To regard these as somehow unique or original is to overlook the influences upon them, which included Parthian Zoroastrianism and various dualistic perspectives (whether philosophical or mystical, or both) in the territories around the northeast and central east Mediterranean Sea, especially in imperial Roman and imperial Hellenistic societies.

An extended examination of these various religions of the same religious tradition, and the influences upon them, is beyond the scope of this present writing, but the successor of mac Nessa, who goes by the "tribal name" Dianim ingen Nessa or Dianaimh nic Nise (and who has been entrusted with legal custodianship, editorial authority, and continuation of the works of Crommán mac Nessa), may eventually produce some discussion thereof, here or elsewhere.  Suffice it to say for the purposes of this present composition that "Monopolistic Dualism" as used by mac Nessa refers primarily to certain underlying metaphysical and ethical concepts of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam (the Abrahamic Tradition of Religions), and, more relevantly for this present discussion, ~ the influences of those concepts upon societies in which those religions have been more or less dominant. ~


Introduction

So strong has been the influence of these religions upon certain societies that the majority of persons within those societies have a preconscious assumption of the truth of whichever of these religions is more or less dominant within the society in which they have been raised, even if they themselves have never read the "sacred" texts of that religion, attended any sort of doctrinal presentations of the religion, or done anything worthy of the name "study" of the said religion.  In consequence of this preconscious assumption, such persons when and if they take a greater interest in the religion are required to unlearn a number of erroneous concepts about the religion (and usually to be indoctrinated in a specific sect's interpretation of said religion, which may involve more "unlearning" of "erroneous" concepts and replacement with the sect's particular dogmatic positions).  As this influence is so strong upon the wider society, even of those who are, at most, merely nominal followers of the religion, the culture or cultures associated with the society tend over time to take on more and more influences from the religion.  Examples of such influence may be relatively mild or even innocuous, or they may be rather pervasive.  Such examples may be found in poetry and other literature, music, visual art and architecture, figures of speech, political discourse and rhetoric, and assorted other expressions of culture.

As the concepts involved in this influence are metaphysical dualism and ethical dualism, some explanation of Systematic Philosophy and its branches or stages is probably in order.  Philosophy, the Queen and Mother of the Sciences, from at least the mediaeval era till around the time of the fin de siècle XIX and the dèbut de siècle XX, has been characterized in retrospect (by some Logical Atomists and Logical Postivists) as "speculative," and subsequent Philosophy has been portrayed as "analytic."  Such painting of the discipline is, however, generalization, for analytic philosophy existed long before Gottlob Frege, and so-called "speculative" philosophy has continued well beyond Wittgenstein, Russell, and Quine.  The author sees the alleged distinctions between "analytic" and "speculative" Philosophy as artificial and of little to no benefit,  However, for the purposes of this explanation, when performed as a "systematic" discipline, Philosophy has traditionally begun with Metaphysics (or more accurately, Ontology and Metaphysics), built Epistemology upon that foundation, decorated it with Aesthetics, erected the pillars of Ethics to support the roof, and then constructed the roof of Politics (including usually Law and Economics) atop those pillars.

Without going into too much detail, Ontology is concerned with Being (or "Essence") and Existence, the Real and the Actual, and Metaphysics applies these concerns to questions of "What is the nature of Reality?" and "What is the One or the Many Constituent(s) of Reality?" and consequent elaborations of answers proposed to these questions.  Very briefly, Ethics deals with Justice in an internal sense (as Politics expands upon this and takes the ideal of Justice to external applications).


Dysfunctions Derived from Monopolistic Dualism

If Monopolistic Dualism be the cause, then it results in assorted dysfunctions of a philosophical, psychological, and/or sociological nature.  Having the same cause, these dysfunctions are naturally similar, at times even blurring into one another and interacting in complex ways.  Indeed, sometimes they are virtually indistinguishable.  For the purposes of this present discussion, only three will be addressed:  Bifurcation Fallacy, Double Standard, and Dichotomy, each of which is a type of Polarization.

Bifurcation Fallacy, which has a variety of names, is more commonly known as "False Dilemma" (or more precisely is a type of False Dilemma, in that False Dilemma may involve more than two options, but never all possible options, whereas Bifurcation Fallacy reduces all choices to a mere two and pretends that those are the only choices which exist), and is generally referred to by laypersons as "Black-and-White Thinking" or "Black-or-White Thinking," is a Logical Fallacy, that is, an incorrect inference form, or a type of faulty reasoning.  Bifurcation Fallacy is limited and limiting;  where multiple answers to a given question exist, only two are presented, while all others are either ignored or left unmentioned, or their existence may even be denied explicitly.

Double Standard is defined by Merriam-Webster as:


a set of principles that applies differently and usually more rigorously to one group of people or circumstances than to another; especially :  a code of morals that applies more severe standards of sexual behavior to women than to men


In unequal or undemocratic societies, a double standard may exist in the application of law to the wealthy and the middle class and poor, with the wealthy receiving privileged or preferential clemency or treatment, while the poor and the middle class are dealt with more strictly and more severely.  In the example given by the dictionary, what is intended is that the notion that a man who is sexually promiscuous is merely "sowing his wild oats" is contrasted with the characterization of a promiscuous woman as "a slut," but likewise the view of a celibate or sexually faithful man as somehow lacking in masculinity contrasted with the celibate or sexually faithful woman as a "virtuous" virgin or wife.  Exceptions to both of these exist:  a celibate woman may also be disparaged as a "spinster" or an "old maid," and a sexually promiscuous man might occasionally be labelled a "scoundrel" or a "roué," but these are exceptions to the general custom.

Dichotomy is defined by Merriam-Webster as:


a difference between two opposite things : a division into two opposite groups : a division into two especially mutually exclusive or contradictory groups or entities; also :  the process or practice of making such a division 


A dichotomy presupposes the actuality or reality (or both) of "polar opposition," and more often than not misrepresents complementary opposites as "polar opposites," the dichotomy being expressed by persons who conceive of opposition only in terms of Polarization, and furthermore see no shades of grey between the extreme poles of black and white.


Symptoms of Dysfunctions Caused by Monopolistic Dualism

Symptoms of these dysfunctions include:  Puritanism vs Hedonism, Fundamentalism, Racism, Fascism (and "Antifa"), Reactionary vs Radical, the "Two" Party System, Paranoia, and "the Enemy Within."

The influential American thinker H.L. Mencken once wrote, "Puritanism. The haunting fear that someone, somewhere, may be happy."  While this was satire, it was not an inaccurate description from some perspectives.  Puritanism was (and is) a form of self-righteous busybodyism.  Puritans assume they know the will of their god, and employ haste in their judgements of others, looking at superficial actions and appearances, rather than essential motivations and attitudes.  Puritanism is an extremist movement devoted to "purifying," initially the Church of England, and later the wider society (especially members of adjacent communities who disagreed with the views of the Puritans).  Puritans have also been characterized as killjoys or dour prudes, in polar opposition to Hedonists;  some scholars (notably, Peter Gay) have contested this view, albeit with somewhat unconvincing counterexamples.  The reputation of the Puritans for religious intolerance, however, is well deserved.

A related phenomenon is Fundamentalism, which exists in most religions (and other forms of worldview).  Fundamentalism is usually, but by no means always, a religious phenomenon, and, like Puritanism, involves an attempt to maintain "purity of doctrine, and is intolerant of dissent or diverse viewpoints.  Fundamentalism also promotes a rigid literalism and socially reactionary perspectives, as well as a sort of exclusivist elitism among its adherents (whence the term "Holier than thou").  Fundamentalism may be "separatist" (withdrawn from the wider society and unconcerned with what the fundamentalist regards as "worldly" concerns) or "open" (engaging in socio-political and economic activism intended to impose the views of the particular manifestation of Fundamentalism on the wider society).  In religious contexts, Fundamentalism is sometimes set in polar opposition to what religious Fundamentalists refer to as "Modernism" or "(religious) Liberalism," by virtue of the religious Fundamentalist rejecting the application of scholarship and critical tools and techniques to learn more about the sources of their dogma (for the acceptance of such might result in the need to amend one's interpretations).  Sometimes "Credalists" are distinguished from "Fundamentalists" on the grounds that the former embrace Creeds and the Traditional Teaching Authority attributed to the Magisterium of the Roman Catholic Church, while the latter claim to embrace the Protestant rallying cry "Sola scriptura."  For any practical purposes, however, they are the same in terms of how they approach belief and scholarship, and how they view dissent and dissenters.

Racism is a symptom of the belief in "good and evil," and the wish on the part of a person that he or she is "good," and by extension, that people who are like her or him are also "good," and therefore, anyone who is not like them is "evil."  This is usually born of ignorance and fear, which mutates into hate.  When it is writ more largely, it often results in Fascism.

Fascism is a socio-political and economic viewpoint, which has certain salient characteristics, chief among which are intense nationalism, intense pro-Capitalism, intense anti-Communism, rhetorical appeals to traditional values and patriotism and the middle class, strong "law and order" policies of an authoritarian nature, glorification of war, and scapegoating (often in the form of racist hatred).  "Antifa" was, once upon a time, a legitimate resistance movement against Fascism, but has long since devolved into the mirror image of Fascism, utilizing many of the same tactics and espousing ideas which tolerate no dissent.

"Reactionary vs Radical" refers to two polarized perspectives on society and social questions.  The Reactionary is one who is so resistant to change that he or she would attempt to undo changes and revert society back to a previous condition, and often expresses an intention to use violence in order to effect this reversion (sometimes following through with the violence).  The Radical is one who espouses change without much regard for whether or not such change will be beneficial, and generally advocates for accomplishing such change by means of violence (again, sometimes following through with violent acts).  In between these are various shades ranging from "Conservative" to "Moderate" to "Liberal" or "Progressive" (while "Liberal" and "Progressive" are not synonymous or coterminous, they do share occasional goals and sometimes their ideals even overlap, while at other times, they will be at loggerheads, because even though they both advocate for beneficial change, they come at it from different angles, the Liberal being in favor of top-down imposition and the Progressive being in favor of grass roots activism;  other distinctions between these two perspectives exist as well, but for the moment, this will suffice).

The "Two" Party System should require no explanation to regular readers of this blog.  If, however, someone would like a refresher in the subject, then "For the World Is Hollow, and I Have Touched the Sky" should serve well enough.

Paranoia refers to an irrational fear that "the other" is not only "evil," but also actively working to do harm to the subject, often by means of some type of conspiracy.

"The Enemy Within" deserves its own separate discussion, for it is to some extent a result of one or more than one of the other symptoms listed.


The Enemy Within

The quote from Nietzsche which opens this present discussion says:  "Who with monsters fights, should see that he in the process not become a monster. And when you long into an abyss gaze, then gazes the abyss also into you."

Nathaniel Hawthorne, in his short story "Young Goodman Brown," provides an illustration of this "aphorism," in that Young Goodman Brown begins the story as one of "the elect," those who in Puritan society viewed themselves as having been predestinated (Sic; haec orthographia recta est.) to salvation in spite of the total depravity which Puritans (and Calvinists in general) believe to be the state of humanity, goes out from the authoritarian order of his society into the untamed wilderness, where he started at every woodland sound and shadow, had some sort of revelation or vision, and returned to his home as depraved as he thereafter believed everyone else to be.

Fundamentalists in their zeal to be "Holier than thou" see "the other" as heretical, deceived, oppressed by demons, and so on, and consequently attempt to outdo one another in external signs of piety, much as the Pharisees who were condemned in the sixth chapter of Matthew, living not due to honest belief or desire to be good, nor from love of the divine and his or her fellow humans and other animals, but out of fear of punishment and a desire to be viewed as "orthodox" by the community.  They become what they claim to not be.

The racist or Fascist projects all of his or her vices upon "the other" who is the subject of scapegoating, and by persecuting this "other," the acting subject, in what Freud would have described as "an unholy marriage of the Id and the Superego," becomes all that he or she hates, while generally not realizing it.  When such a person does realize the truth, his or her hatred is likely to become even more intense, as blame for such "transformation" is also projected onto "the other."  She or he becomes all that he or she hates.

Reactionaries and Radicals will likewise view any variation from their particular perspective among their fellows to be a clue that these fellows are not only not "pure," but may indeed be an agent of the polar opposite perspective who has somehow infiltrated the security of their organization, and will then perform the work of the adherents of the polar opposite perspective by persecuting their own for minor deviation from orthodoxy.  They become their own oppressors.

Party members in a "Two" Party System are notorious for viewing any criticism of their party and its candidates and elected/appointed officials as evidence that the critic is a member of "the other" party (as if there were only two parties, and as if the "two" were not identical in essence).  The author's father was a lifelong partisan Republican, and he would listen to the author criticize Democrats and the Democratic Party with what might be considered to be contentment, but when she went on to criticize Republicans and the Republican Party, her father would become hostile and accuse her of being "a damned Democrat," in spite of her having just spent thirty minutes or more in critique of the Democrats and their party.  An unfortunate consequence of the "Two" Party System is that many of its captives cannot conceive of any criticism of their party coming from anyone other than a member of "the other" party.  They behave in exactly the same manner towards critics as members of "the other" party, and so have become identical to them in all but name.

When coupled with Paranoia, any of these, or some combination thereof, may lead a person thus afflicted to distrust others and to allege that such distrusted others are infiltrators from a polar opposite perspective, and/or agents of a conspiratorial operation devised by representatives of such.  When the acting subject has set himself or herself up as some sort of "crusader" against a given polar opposite perspective, convinced that the said perspective and its adherents are "evil," he or she may over time adopt the tactics attributed to that other perspective, becoming, in Nietzsche's phrase, the monster which she or he fights, having studied those tactics and the ideology of the polar opposite perspective long enough that, again in Nietzsche's expression, the abyss has gazed back into him or her.

In short, she or he becomes "the enemy within."


The Cure

In order for this symptom to be eradicated, one must not merely address the symptom.  Such a "treatment" would be ineffective, since the cause of the dysfunction behind the symptom would remain unaddressed.  Attempting to treat the dysfunction itself would likewise be less than satisfactory, because, again, the cause would still not be addressed.  The cause of these dysfunctions and their attendant symptoms must be cured.  Dualism alone is undesirable, but Monopolistic Dualism is dangerous to society.  It poisons intellects, holds people captive in the Cave of Ignorance, easily manipulated by unscrupulous demagogues and Machiavellian connivers.  Thus, what must be cured is Monopolistic Dualism itself.  To effect this cure, Monopolistic Dualism must be replaced with a more suitable worldview, of which there are several, including both Monism and Triplism, as well as various other options (even Pluralistic Dualism would be preferable to Monopolistic Dualism).  The author herself espouses Triplism, but she is not imperialistic, and leaves the choice of the replacement up to the individual healer.  For her own part, she will attempt to heal by means of Triplism, as it is her own perspective, and she will hope that it will effect the necessary cure.




Supplemental

Some readers have expressed confusion over this piece, and therefore, presented below are some comments by the author, which she hopes will clarify the import and intent of the above writing.  These comments taken together may be seen as a sort of "Abstract" of the piece, although written in a more "conversational" style than an Abstract would be.

1. The post is ultimately about how the assumption of the existence of a flesh vs spirit dualism, and/or a good vs "evil" dualism, when those are coupled with monopolistic views, result in people hurting other people, and becoming all the bad things which they thought those other people were.  It also includes a proposal for subverting the dominant paradigm which leads to this situation of "The Enemy Within."


2. I myself have a tripartite anthropology: We are Body, Soul, and Spirit.

I believe that Ethics is a complicated business, and the ethicality of conduct is found in Motivation/Attitude, Context/Situation, and Consequence.


3. Imagine that Philosophy is like a temple.

The foundation of the temple has to do with Being/Essence and Existence (Ontology), and the pavement on that is an application of it to more specific ideas about Reality/Being/Essence and Actuality/Existence (Metaphysics).

Then you need walls, so you build those out of ideas about Truth and Knowledge (Epistemology).

Then you want some decoration, so you bring in ideas of Art and Beauty (Aesthetics).

You'll need columns to support the roof, and those are made of ideas about Justice in Personal Conduct (Ethics).

And then you put the roof on, which is made of ideas about Justice in Society (Politics, including Law and Economics).


4. Okay, now, along come worldviews which have as part of their underlying Philosophy the belief in a Dualistic Metaphysic which says that Good and Evil are Metaphysical Realities, that they are Essences (no matter Augustine's attempt to spin this into a conception of "Evil" as "privatio boni" or "absence of Good"), Eternal and Forever in Conflict. This Metaphysic moreover asserts that Spirit is "Good" and is somehow imprisoned in Flesh, which is "Evil" (or at least has somehow become "Corrupted"). This may not be officially accepted as "orthodox," but is nevertheless subliminally inculcated by the guardians of "orthodoxy." Nature is consequently seen as likewise "Evil" (or "Corrupted") and so on.

Arising out of this Metaphysic comes an Ethic which affirms that Actions in themselves are "Good" or "Evil." As time goes on, this evolves through the work of Reformers like Y'shua` (Jesus) into a focus on the Motivation/Attitude (and sometimes the Context/Situation), rather than the Act In Itself. However, the old Legalism remains under the surface and generally bubbles up among the laypeople, who are not usually taught that Y'shua` gave a new Ethic to replace the old Legalism. While they are given the texts, the import thereof is not explained to them, and so they still cling to the Literalism and Legalism of the older perspective. Further contributing to this complication is the fact that early teachers of the new reform also perpetuate the Legalism to a greater or lesser extent. Other expressions of this perspective survive as well, or later develop, which perpetuate the old focus on Action In Itself as "Good" or "Evil." The Reform is therefore not very successful, like a revolution which merely replaces "Tsar" with "Chairman," or "Congreditor princeps novus, idem princeps vetus" (Meet the new boss, same as the old boss).

Because these worldviews are religious, and not simply philosophical, they also include additional notions beyond the confines of Philosophy, including the idea of "Original Sin" and a "Sin Nature" somehow deriving from "Original Sin." Rather than teaching the disciple to amend his or her own conduct by intellectual meditation, mystical contemplation, and the cultivation of virtue, these worldviews develop a concept of "salvation" or "deliverance," which requires a "savior" or "deliverer." Such a person must of course be somehow free of the "Sin Nature" and therefore must be somehow divine or specially blessed by the divine, or some such device.

Furthermore, the claim is put forward that ONLY this belief system and its "savior" figure can effect this deliverance.

Taken in combination with the Metaphysical and Ethical Dualism, this Soteriological Exclusivity (see note below) implies, or even explicitly demands, that the disciple should spread this belief system to others, allegedly out of compassion, but more because 1. the disciple fears that infidels will perpetuate "Evil" in the world and possibly visit evil in the sense of pain and suffering upon the disciple, AND 2. because the disciple may be led into doubt when confronted by an infidel who seems virtuous and is willing to rationally discuss such concepts, and doubt challenges the unquestioning credulity upon which the priesthoods of these belief systems depend for wealth and power.

Thus arises "Monopolistic Dualism."

(Soteriology = from Sôtêria, Classical [Attikê] and Hellenistic [Koinê] Greek for "Salvation" + -logia, Attic and Koinê Greek for "study, science, discipline").


5. Monopolistic Dualism leads to a number of intellectual dysfunctions, among which are Bifurcation Fallacy, Double Standards, and Dichotomies.  Symptoms of these dysfunctions as experienced in society are also discussed (including the one which is the main focus of the post, and which I have called "The Enemy Within"), and then a "cure" is proposed.








The title of the post comes from Star Trek (The Original Series), Season 1, episode 5;  episode 5 overall;  production code 05.


Fair use notice
This blog contains copyrighted material the use of which may not been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. I am making such material available in my effort to advance understanding of scientific, environmental, political, human rights, economic, philosophical, psychological, cultural, and social issues, etc. 
I believe this constitutes a 'fair use' of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes.  No challenge of ownership is intended or implied.
For more information: https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/17/107.
If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond 'fair use', you must obtain permission from the copyright owner. 




Thursday, October 27, 2016

Plato's Stepchildren




Plato's Stepchildren,
or,
The Unexamined (Political) Life
Is Not Worth Living,
by Liviana (Giovanna L.)


In the dialogue which he named Πολιτεία (Politeia, rendered into English as "The Republic"), the Athenian philosopher named Ἀριστοκλῆς (Aristoklês, usually given in English as "Aristocles"), better known by his nickname, Πλάτων (Platôn, rendered into English as "Plato"), wrote what has sometimes been referred to as his "Allegory of the Cave," or his "Cave Metaphor."  Plato was a student of Σωκράτης (Sôkratês, given in English as "Socrates"), to whom is attributed the saying "The unexamined life is not worth living."

Plato's Cave Metaphor tells of people in a cave, chained so that they are facing the wall, and who can only see shadows cast on the wall by figures moving behind them, between themselves and a fire further behind.  A wall directly behind the captives prevents their own shadows from being cast onto the wall.  To these imprisoned cave-dwellers, the shadows cast on the wall seem to be reality, and are indeed the nearest thing to reality which they can ordinarily apprehend, and so they give names to the shadows, believing that the shadows are reality.  In this Allegory of the Cave, Plato also places the philosopher, whom he describes as one of the prisoners who somehow becomes freed from the chains and begins to explore, finding the fire, traveling on out of the cave itself and seeing the still greater light of the sun, and who then returns to his fellows in the cave and attempts to encourage them to cast off their shackles and emerge into the sunlight of truth, but is upon reentering the cave blind in the relative darkness.  This blindness would be taken by the captives as harm done to him by his journey out of the cave and into the sunlight, and they would be likely then to try to kill anyone who attempted to take them out of the cave.

The above brief summary of Plato's Cave Metaphor does not do the actual writing justice, but it does give the basic idea.  Evidence in support of Plato's contention that the deceived prisoners would tend to attempt to kill one who might attempt to liberate and enlighten them can be found in many cultures across vast spans of time, including Socrates himself, who was murdered by the Athenians for "corrupting the youth," and arguably including such figures (whether they be literal or mythical persons) as Y'shua` (Jesus), Krishna, the Reverend Doctor Martin Luther King, Jr, and many others.

Yet, as one occasionally lucid thinker once wrote:  "He must teach, though he may make severe the ordeals."  The liberated enlightened have an obligation to their fellow creatures, an ethical imperative, to attempt to likewise liberate and enlighten them.  Indeed, some might contend that the very state of liberation and enlightenment ignites this ethical sense of compassion.  Be that as it may, one who has been freed from the fetters and come to see the shadows for the deceptive diversion which they are is compelled to attempt to do the same for those who remain bound in "the Cave of Ignorance," to liberate them from their bondage and to drag them, kicking and screaming if need be, out of the deception and into reality.

Before proceeding further, an explanation of the term "ignorance" is perhaps in order.  An unfortunate actuality is the fact that "ignorant" is so often used in English-speaking societies as an insult.  The word "ignorance," however, in its etymology and literal meaning, signifies nothing other than a lack of knowledge.  Such a state, while undesirable, is not something to be seen as warranting mockery for those in the state.  Willful ignorance is another matter.  The willfully ignorant deserve derision, but only after earnest attempts to liberate them from their ignorance.

In this blog, the author has attempted frequently to lay bare the deceptions, the distractions, the misdirection and diversion which the establishment has used to keep the people ignorant of the truth, and the chains which have been used to keep the people from considering the fact of the deception and ignorance.  A few recent examples include "Dimensions of Perspective," "Remember What We Fight Against, and What We Fight For," "The Alternative Factor," "Bread and Circuses," "For the World Is Hollow, and I Have Touched the Sky," "The Enterprise Incident(s)," "Is There in Truth No Beauty?" and "Obsession."  More will follow, if the gods be willing;  some are already in production, but not yet ready for publication.  This present post is another example of such attempts.

The author hopes that she will be spared from assassination attempts by the fearful against those who engage in such gadfly activity.  She is armed, however, and knows a few things about how to defend herself, being a Texas girl and one who has had a small amount of military and martial arts training, nor does she have a naïve perspective of absolute pacifism or a desire for martyrdom.  She is a Heathen who holds to an Heroic Ethic, and is not a follower of any Slave Morality.  In short, she is not a messiah, and will not allow herself to be treated as such by opponents -- or, for that matter, by would-be disciples.  She is but a woman and not a goddess, but she is not a woman who would submit to terror or allow herself to be hindered by fear, of any sort.

Indeed, one of the distractions which have been used to keep the people bound and ignorant is what is known by philosophers as Argumentum ad Metum, which is to say, Appeal to Fear.  The people are presented first with a Bifurcation Fallacy, a faulty argument which attempts to reduce all the myriad choices available to a mere two, and, lest they dare to object to this limitation and consider one of the other options, they are then presented with a tale in which they are told that they must choose "this one," because "the other one" is dangerous, is fanatical, is hateful, is, in short, a big bad wolf, who must at all costs be stopped and that "this one" is the only one who can stop that "other one."

Yet, upon further examination, the alleged "differences" between "this one" and "the other one" melt away like shadows of deception in the light of truth.  This unrelenting light lays bare the reality of the situation, that "this one" and "the other one" are both representatives of the same establishment, and will both serve that establishment if given an office in which to do so.  This bright sunlight shines upon the history which demonstrates this to be verity.  The two major political parties are only different in appearance, but not in substance.  When in office, their candidates do make a bit of noise to perpetuate the illusion that they are opponents, but their actions, for the most part, are too remarkably similar to be taken as indicating any meaningful difference.  One will go to war and the other will complain about it, but when the other holds the office, that other will also go to war (or perpetuate war), with what are, essentially if not literally, the same enemies, and the same excuses and justifications will be used, perhaps with slightly different phrasing.  One will deregulate corporations and the banking industry, and the other will profess opposition, but when the other is in the office, that other will likewise deregulate the same corporate entities.  One will bail out the corporate entities who have brought the nation to the brink of economic disaster after being trusted to self-regulate and the other will howl and moan, but as soon as the same situation arises and the other sits in the office, that other will do exactly the same thing (if perhaps by different means).  Those few mavericks who dare to diverge from the standard operating procedure, who dare to challenge the status quo, who even go so far as to openly oppose the will of their establishment-controlled party, are marginalized, disenfranchised, denied funding or fundraising assistance, and ignored by the party, and by the corporate media which also serves the same establishment.

Smoke and mirrors, or shadows cast on the wall of a cave, it matters not the metaphor which is used.  The reality of the situation is quite simply, as has been shown in other posts here, that all the apparent differences between the two establishment parties are only superficial, and that they are so nearly alike as to be identical in a substantial sense.

More than those two establishment parties exist.  More ways of running elections exist than the sterility and vapidity of "First Past the Post."  The archaic model of the Electoral College, which served some useful purpose in the late 1700s, is now in need of reform, and more, in its current state, it is a hindrance to progress beyond the limitations which the people have accepted as "reality."




A sun does exist.  An entire world outside the cave lies waiting to be explored and understood.  The people who are even now bound, deceived, misdirected and distracted and diverted from the truth can shake off their shackles and walk out of the cave.  The key is here, and a rudimentary map.  They have but to accept the offer and act upon it.  As a certain doctor would advise the people to affirm, "It's in our hands."  It is indeed;  the key to remove the chains, the map out of the cave, both are in the hands of the people, if they will but pay attention and use those tools.




The time is now.  Every vote counts.  The people must go Green in 2016, for the republic, for themselves, for their children, for their children's children, for freedom and truth, honoring the past, respecting the present, and building a worthy legacy for the future.










The title of the post comes from Star Trek (The Original Series), Season 3, episode 10;  episode 65 overall;  production code 67.


Fair use notice
This blog contains copyrighted material the use of which may not been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. I am making such material available in my effort to advance understanding of scientific, environmental, political, human rights, economic, philosophical, psychological, cultural, and social issues, etc. 
I believe this constitutes a 'fair use' of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes.  No challenge of ownership is intended or implied.
For more information: https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/17/107.
If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond 'fair use', you must obtain permission from the copyright owner. 



Sunday, October 23, 2016

Obsession




Obsession,
or, Misdirection and Diversion,
by Liviana (Giovanna L.)


On Friday, the 7th of October, in the Common Era year 2016, a video from 2005 was released by NBC and The Washington Post, featuring Donald Trump and Billy Bush with a hot mic recording their conversation.  To say that their chat was "Not Safe For Work" would be an understatement, as the reader will note from the link just provided.  Earlier in the week, Julian Assange of WikiLeaks held a press conference in which he promised that the first batch of leaks in his "October Surprise" would be released that week.  That release also came on the 7th of October.  Included in the leak were excerpts from the long-withheld paid speeches which were given by Hillary Clinton to various big banks and Wall Street firms.  Included in those excerpts were some statements by Mrs Clinton which demonstrated that she is, as progressives have long held, a two-faced person who says one thing in public and another in private, that her public statements cannot be trusted, that her publicly stated positions on issues cannot be viewed as an accurate presentation of her actual views.

Most of the main stream media obsessed over Mr Trump's comments, and said nothing about the revelations from the excerpts of Hillary's paid speeches, for over 24 hours.  One of the few exceptions, surprisingly, was The Wall Street Journal.  Another was CBS, perhaps recalling fondly the days when Edward R. Murrow, Walter Cronkite, and Dan Rather were among the most trusted people in America.  The author still recalls Mister Rather ending broadcasts with the word "Courage" in September of 1986 and catching flak for it, but the author loved it.  He was right to say it;  the American people needed to hear it at the time.




The recent narrative over which the main stream media obsessed was essentially "Trump is a bad man, he's a misogynist, he said all these deplorable things, Republicans are deserting him."

The author has said it before since these two releases, and she will now say it again.

Men may not want to admit this, but they do talk among themselves in exactly the same way in which Donald Trump and Billy Bush were speaking on the tape.  Such speech is not particularly uncommon among men.  It is also a form of male posturing, and should be taken as such (in other words, it amounts to more hot air, trying to impress one another with how sexually active and "Alpha" they are;  i.e., the same blowhard routine which has already been seen from Trump throughout the primary season and continuing into the lead-up to the general election).  The author has herself heard much worse talk from guys when they did not realize a woman was within earshot.  Why anyone is surprised at the comments of Mr Trump is a bit mysterious;  the public already knows that Trump is a chauvinist, after all.  Yes, the comments which Trump made were lewd, but they pale in comparison to Hillary being a condescending, two-faced, corrupt criminal.  Progressives have been saying all along that Trump's words cannot compare to Hillary's actions.

In addition, every woman with a story about "Slick Willy" misbehaving which came to Mrs Clinton's knowledge was apparently mocked and insulted by Mrs Clinton, who tried to silence them and furthermore attempted to discredit them and besmirch their reputations.  The obvious example is Monica Lewinsky. whom Mrs Clinton referred to at the time the story was breaking as "a narcissistic loony toon."  Paula Jones accused Mr Clinton of exposing himself and sexually harassing her.  In January 1998, as part of Paula Jones' case, Mr Clinton testified under oath that he had sexual relations with Gennifer Flowers.  In 2016, Ms Flowers stated that Hillary is an enabler of Bill Clinton's affairs.  Juanita Broaddrick accused Bill Clinton of rape.  Kathleen Willey has accused Bill Clinton of groping her without consent.  And all of this is still with Mrs Clinton.

But wait, there's more!  Ms Clinton herself, who has more recently parroted the demands of certain so-called "Third Wave Feminists" that a woman who says she has been raped should be believed (perhaps the example of Tawana Brawley has been forgotten, but that said, not every woman who says she was raped is Ms Brawley, and while automatic belief would be an example of inappropriate credulity on the part of investigators, those taking her testimony should absolutely not interact with the woman making the claim in the same way they would deal with a suspect in a crime), has a history of denigrating, mocking, attempting to silence and smear, and defiantly refusing to believe women who made such claims about Mr Clinton.

Trump did at least offer something which some are taking as an apology for the remarks, and some have doubts about it being an actual apology due to the wording.  The author will say that it was more of an apology than any she has heard from Hillary Clinton;  indeed, Ms Clinton never admits fault, but says "I misspoke" or "I made a mistake," or blatantly denies anything was wrong with what she said or did, or denies it ever even happened.

So once again, people are afraid of or upset by some words used by Trump, but willing to overlook the actions of Hillary Clinton, exactly as Trump stated in his apology.  And exactly as progressives have been pointing out for over two months now, they're obsessing over Trump's speech, while giving a pass to Hillary's behavior.  Why, exactly?

The answer is simple:  misdirection and diversion.  Indeed, the very timing of the released tape of what Trump has accurately (as unpleasant as that reality may be for some women to hear) referred to as "locker-room banter" seems to be rather convenient, since the main stream media folk were aware that Assange's first batch of leaks would happen some time in that week, and the main stream media outlets have largely promoted Hillary's candidacy since the two conventions ended.

Meanwhile, the Democrats, for their part, do not explicitly deny the truth of what has been revealed in the leaked emails and speeches.  Some have danced around the question, alluding to "doctored" emails, without ever explicitly claiming that the leaked emails themselves have been altered, but for the most part, they attempt to portray themselves as "victims" and point their fingers at Russia, as if the source of the leaks would somehow absolve them, and Mrs Clinton, of responsibility for the contents of the emails and speeches.  Thanks to WikiLeaks, the public has seen evidence of collusion between the DNC and the main stream media, the public has seen excerpts from Mrs Clinton's paid speeches (which reveal, among other things, what progressives already knew, that she changes her message depending on her audience, or, in other words, that she is two-faced), the public has seen that Mrs Clinton's economic views are (as progressives already knew) Right Wing, the public has seen evidence that the DNC colluded with the Hillary for President campaign during the primary (in violation of the DNC's own charter) and attempted to undermine Senator Sanders' campaign (in defiance of the democratic principle of fair and honest elections) -- and these leaks led to the Chair of the DNC stepping down (how's that for evidence of the authenticity of the leaked emails?), the public now knows that Hillary at least gave some thought to naming a billionaire as her running mate but already planned to name Tim Kaine as her running mate over a year prior to the Democratic National Convention, the public now knows that Hillary colluded illegally with Super Pacs, the people know that the DNC punished Tulsi Gabbard for endorsing Senator Sanders, hints have been revealed that Hillary's campaign was in contact with the Department of Justice while she was under investigation by the FBI, the public has seen confirmation that Hillary as Secretary of State approved the sale of weapons to Daesh (also known as "ISIL" and "ISIS"), the people have seen that Hillary still supports fracking, the public has seen that Hillary will sell out American workers, the people have seen that Hillary believes that the very people who caused the economic recession should be trusted to resolve the situation and suggest regulations on themselves (Cenk of TYT calls her on this, but fails to realize that his previous talk of electing Hillary and then getting money out of politics is the same fallacy, as the author pointed out in a post on Google Plus:  "Hillary isn't going to cooperate with you or us to get the money out of politics for the same reason the bankers aren't going to help the government successfully regulate the banks: she has benefitted from money in politics!"), and the list goes on.  What Julian Assange has done in releasing this information is what journalists are supposed to do, and what they did do once upon a time.

But Trump said bad things, and that, and alleged Russian hacks, became the focus of the main stream media in an effort to bury the revelations of WikiLeaks.


Walter Cronkite


Once upon a time, the news media did journalism.


Edward R. Murrow


But now, they are another of the circuses in the bread and circuses which the establishment uses to distract the voters.

When the people have revelations of actual wrongdoing, of subversion of democracy, of criminal collusion, of the deception perpetrated by Hillary Clinton on the voters, of Hillary's real viewpoints, that should be news.

But no, Trump said bad things, and that has been used to distract from the dystopia which Hillary Clinton has planned.





Here's an idea:  don't vote for either of those two rich assholes who care nothing for America or the American people.  Go Green in 2016 and tell the "two" party system to get stuffed.




The author has shown in this blog already that the Democrats who blame Ralph Nader for Al Gore's defeat in 2000 are in denial of the facts.  More than that, however, anyone who votes for anyone is "spoiling" the election for another candidate.  This horseshit about "spoilers" is so illogical as to merit only disdain.

But but but ... Trump!  Yeah?  Progressives have the numbers to defeat both of the rich assholes and put a progressive in office.  The American people should listen to that progressive and give her platform the consideration it deserves.



















The title of the post comes from Star Trek (The Original Series), Season 2, episode 13;  episode 42 overall;  production code 47.


Fair use notice
This blog contains copyrighted material the use of which may not been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. I am making such material available in my effort to advance understanding of scientific, environmental, political, human rights, economic, philosophical, psychological, cultural, and social issues, etc. 
I believe this constitutes a 'fair use' of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes.  No challenge of ownership is intended or implied.
For more information: https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/17/107.
If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond 'fair use', you must obtain permission from the copyright owner. 


Sunday, October 16, 2016

Is There in Truth No Beauty?







Is There in Truth No Beauty?
or, Lies and Fear Must Be Rejected,
by Liviana (Giovanna L.)


So you've read or heard some scary things about Doctor Jill Stein, Green Party nominee for President?  You're wondering if those things might be true?  Let's look and see.




Are Doctor Jill Stein and the Green Party opposed to vaccinations?  Do they believe that vaccinations cause Autism?

Here is the truth.  Please read it.

First, let's address the question itself, whether vaccines themselves cause Autism.

No.  They do not.  You want evidence?  Okay ...

No MMR-Autism Link in Large Study of Vaccinated vs. Unvaccinated Kids
https://www.autismspeaks.org/science/science-news/no-mmr-autism-link-large-study-vaccinated-vs-unvaccinated-kids

12-Year-Old Sets Out To Prove Link Between Vaccines And Autism: Here’s What He Found (with Video)
http://samuel-warde.com/2016/05/marco-arturo-debunks-vaccines-autism/

American Academy of Pediatrics: Pediatrics Journal:  Addressing Parents’ Concerns: Do Vaccines Cause Allergic or Autoimmune Diseases?
http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/111/3/653

Have there been contaminated vaccines in the past?  Apparently so.

Are there risks involved in vaccines?  Of course, and even in something as common as a flu vaccination, you are given a disclosure form which you must sign stating that you have been informed of the risks of, among other things, the possibility of getting Guillain-Barré syndrome from the vaccine.

But this hysterical claim that MMR vaccinations cause Autism is thoroughly debunked and unworthy of being promoted.

Now, where did all this stuff about Doctor Stein being an "anti-vaxxer" come from?  Who stands to gain by spreading these claims?

The Hillary Clinton for President campaign is feeling the Bern rather strongly, as large numbers of those who supported Senator Bernie Sanders in the primary have decided to support Doctor Jill Stein in the general election.  Hillary's ratings continue to fluctuate wildly, but her approval and trust ratings have taken a nose dive.  The Hillary campaign is trying their damnedest to promote the idea that Doctor Stein is an anti-vaxxer or at least "pandering" to anti-vaxxers:




And they have not limited their smear attempts to the vaccination question:
Smearing Stein: Media as Propaganda
http://www.counterpunch.org/2016/08/05/85477/

So does Doctor Jill Stein oppose vaccination?  Is she an "anti-vaxxer," or does she "pander" to those who are?

These attempted smears of Doctor Stein by the Hillary for  President campaign are _not_ a reflection of Doctor Stein's views in the least, as shown in multiple sources (including Snopes):

Dr. Jill Stein Tweet on the Question
https://twitter.com/DrJillStein/status/759142652243644416?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AnKQJVhIRlk


Their smears to discredit Jill Stein
https://socialistworker.org/2016/08/02/their-smears-to-discredit-jill-stein


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WiQWhJj-3yQ


Dr. Jill Stein joins On Point for a conversation about politics and policies
https://plus.google.com/u/0/+GiovannaX/posts/RQqrSqQif1e
Beginning about 35 minutes in, Doctor Stein addresses charges that she is anti-vaccination, or might somehow be "pandering" to anti-vaxxers.

Jill Stein answers science questions
http://www.jill2016.com/jill_stein_answers_science_questions

Flashback: When Hillary and Obama Gave Credence to Anti-Vaccine Theories
http://freebeacon.com/issues/flashback-when-hillary-and-obama-gave-credence-to-anti-vaccine-theories/

Snopes:
Jill's Line
Claim: Green Party presidential candidate Dr. Jill Stein has stated that she opposes the use of vaccines.  X False
http://www.snopes.com/is-green-party-candidate-jill-stein-anti-vaccine/

Can we once and for all lay to rest this desperate lie that Doctor Jill Stein is in any way opposed to vaccination?  Can we once and for all bury the lie that Doctor Stein is "pandering" to those who are opposed to vaccination?  Can we stop listening to the corrupt, voter suppressing, election rigging, establishment and do some research to find out the truth of the claims with which we are inundated by the corporate media and the establishment parties' candidates?


What about other claims that Dr Stein is anti-science?  What's this stuff about her worrying about children being exposed to wifi?  That's gotta be some kind of crazy, right?

As for the Wi-Fi business? The French actually have a law to limit exposure to electromagnetic waves generated by wireless technology (mobile phones, tablets , Wi-Fi):

La loi sur les ondes électromagnétiques en 5 questions
http://www.lemonde.fr/planete/article/2014/01/24/tout-comprendre-sur-la-loi-sur-les-ondes-electromagnetiques_4353906_3244.html

TEACHERS in the UK seem to have had some concerns as well:

Wi-fi 'should be banned in schools'
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/1559141/Wi-fi-should-be-banned-in-schools.html

Obviously educated people. Probably a majority of them are rational, too.  Some might even be science teachers.

And before you insist that Wi-Fi is perfectly safe, and that the UK teachers and the French government are being hysterical, you might want to look into this:

Major Cell Phone Radiation Study Reignites Cancer Questions
Exposure to radio-frequency radiation linked to tumor formation in rats
http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/major-cell-phone-radiation-study-reignites-cancer-questions/

Again, this attack on Doctor Stein is nothing but the Hillary campaign trying to discredit a superior candidate by playing on fear.


Hm, okay, maybe we should not dismiss her concerns about wifi out of hand.  But she's anti-scientific on GMOs, right?  GMOs are perfectly safe, so why's she so 'paranoid' about them?

No.  You will occasionally encounter people who insist that Genetically Modified Organisms are perfectly safe and who attack any suggestion to the contrary as somehow anti-scientific.  But let's look at this assertion a bit more closely.

Are GMO’s Safe? The Case of Bt Corn
http://www.care2.com/greenliving/are-gmos-safe-the-case-of-bt-corn.html


Well, there!  That seems pretty safe!  So what's all the hoopla about GMOs about?
Let's dig a little deeper.

Public Health Association of Australia:  GENETICALLY MODIFIED FOODS
https://web.archive.org/web/20140120113716/http://www.phaa.net.au/documents/policy/GMFood.pdf

Union of Concerned Scientists:  Genetic Engineering in Agriculture
http://www.ucsusa.org/our-work/food-agriculture/our-failing-food-system/genetic-engineering-agriculture#.V6x-H5grK01

Boston College Law Review:  Risk and Regulation: U.S. Regulatory Policy on Genetically Modified Food and Agriculture
http://lawdigitalcommons.bc.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=2236&context=bclr

Now let me quote a brief passage from page 741 of "A literature review on the safety assessment of genetically modified plants," published in Environment International, Volume 37, Issue 4, May 2011.

<< Moreover, it is worth mentioning that most of the studies demonstrating that GM foods are as nutritional and safe as those obtained by conventional breeding, have been performed by biotechnology companies or associates, which are also responsible of commercializing these GM plants. ...  Scientists know quite well how different may be the information published in reputed international journals, which has been submitted to peer-review processes, from those general comments/reports not submitted to this selective procedure.


A relatively remarkable finding of the present review is that the published scientific literature between October 2006 (Domingo, 2007) and August 2010 (current review) on edible GM plants, concerns only to three products: corn/maize, soybeans, and rice, rice being comparatively the less abundant. We have not been able to find citations involving investigations on GM potatoes (except a review by Arvanitoyannis et al., 2008), peas, tomatoes, pepper, etc., after October 2006. ...  Séralini's group raised concern regarding some commercialized GM maize (NK 603, MON 810 and MON 863) (Séralini et al., 2007, 2009; de Vendômois et al., 2009). Similarly, scientific controversy is also present in relation to the safety of GM soybeans. While it has been reported that 356043 (Sakamoto et al., 2007) and 305423 (Delaney et al., 2008) soybeans were as safe as conventional non-GM soybeans, some authors are still concerned by the safety of GM soybeans and recommend to investigate the long-term consequences of GM diets and the potential synergistic effects with other products and/or conditions (Malatesta et al., 2008a,b;  Cisterna et al., 2008; Magaña-Gómez et al., 2008).


In the period here revised, October 2006–August 2010, a few reviews on health risks of GM foods/plants have been also published (Dona and Arvanitoyannis, 2009; Magaña-Gómez and de la Barca, 2009; Key et al., 2008). In general terms, all these authors agree in remarking that more scientific efforts are clearly necessary in order to build confidence in the evaluation and acceptance of GM foods/plant by both the scientific community and the general public. Especially critical is the recent review by Dona and Arvanitoyannis (2009), who remarked that results of most studies with GM foods would indicate that they may cause some common toxic effects such as hepatic, pancreatic, renal, or reproductive effects, and might alter the hematological, biochemical, and immunologic parameters. These authors also concluded that the use of recombinant GH or its expression in animals should be re-examined since it has been shown that it increases IGF-1 which, in turn, may promote cancer. A harsh response to that review was recently published in the same journal (Rickard, 2010). This is indeed only an example on the controversial debate on GMOs, which remains completely open at all levels. >>

http://gaiapresse.ca/images/nouvelles/28563.pdf
(Again, this is on p. 741.)

No scientific controversy?  Hmm, maybe that's not quite so;  maybe there is some scientific controversy:
An Illusory Consensus behind GMO Health Assessment
http://emerald.tufts.edu/~skrimsky/PDF/Illusory%20Consensus%20GMOs.PDF

The British Medical Association (not exactly an "anti-scientific" group) recommends caution and further research:
Genetically modified foods and health: a second interim statement
http://www.argenbio.org/adc/uploads/pdf/bma.pdf

<< These principles dictate a case-by-case premarket assessment that includes an evaluation of both direct and unintended effects. >>
~ "Codex guidelines for GM foods include the analysis of unintended effects," Nature Biotechnology 21, 739 - 741 (2003).
http://www.nature.com/nbt/journal/v21/n7/full/nbt0703-739.html

False claims and flawed conclusions being used to push GMO crops
http://truepublica.org.uk/united-kingdom/false-claims-flawed-conclusions-used-push-gmo-crops/

Monsanto Protection Act Signed By Obama, GMO Bill “Written By Monsanto” Signed Into Law
http://www.globalresearch.ca/monsanto-protection-act-signed-by-obama-gmo-bill-written-by-monsanto-signed-into-law/5329388

Minimizing Pollen Drift & Commingling of GMO and non-GMO Corn Grain
https://www.agry.purdue.edu/ext/corn/news/articles.00/gmo_issues-000307.html

"GMOs, Herbicides, and Public Health," The New England Journal of Medicine, 2015; 373:693-695, August 20, 2015
http://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMp1505660

How One GMO Nearly Took Down the Planet
http://www.alternet.org/food/how-one-gmo-nearly-took-down-planet

Time Magazine:  "Over Half of E.U. Countries Are Opting Out of GMOs"
http://time.com/4060476/eu-gmo-crops-european-union-opt-out/

Genetically Modified Maize: Doctors' Chamber Warns of "Unpredictable Results" to Humans
http://www.prnewswire.co.uk/news-releases/genetically-modified-maize-doctors-chamber-warns-of-unpredictable-results-to-humans-231410601.html

10 Problems Genetically Modified Foods Are Already Causing
http://listverse.com/2013/06/22/10-problems-genetically-modified-foods-are-already-causing/

"GM crops and the rat digestive tract: A critical review," Environment International, Volume 73, December 2014, Pages 423–433
http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0160412014002669

"Safety assessment of GM plants: An updated review of the scientific literature," Food and Chemical Toxicology, Volume 95, September 2016, Pages 12–18
http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0278691516301934

Canadian Association of Physicians for the Environment Statement on Genetically Modified Organisms in the Environment and the Marketplace
http://cape.ca/capes-position-statement-on-gmos/

And even if GMOs themselves were uncontroversial as some claim, there's more to it than the GMOs themselves;  there are also issues related to chemicals used with GMOs:
Pesticide Action Network:  Monsanto vs farmers. Again.
http://www.panna.org/blog/monsanto-vs-farmers-again#.V7fNBrfVQ6w.google_plusone_share


Okay, okay, so maybe GMOs aren't quite as safe as Monsanto and other corporations producing them would like for us to believe.  Alright, then, she's not anti-scientific.  But what about her praising Russia and condemning the US?  While she was in Russia, even;  what about that?

Okay, let's look at that.

<< ...

On Saturday, it was Jill Stein’s turn in the Kremlin seat. As the Green Party candidate rises in the polls, it was only a matter of time before Democrats turned their Russia-smearing eyes toward her. One of the most widely-shared tweets of the weekend was this one from Andrew Weiss of the Carnegie Endowment: a total fabrication that was nonetheless heralded by dozens of Clinton-support journalists because it did the job of smearing a Hillary dissenter as a Russian tool:
(video)
(tweet)
This tweet is, to state it plainly, a lie. Stein simply did not “gush over Russian support for human rights.” To the contrary, in this very video, she criticized Russia for diverting scarce resources into military spending while its people suffered, and merely praised her fellow participants from around the world who attended an RT-sponsored conference. But no matter: Democratic operatives and journalists widely hailed it as proof that she, too, is some sort of Russia dupe or worse.

One Clinton-supporting blog – while also lying by claiming that “she only criticized the US” – attacked Stein for criticizing the U.S. while standing on dirty foreign soil (“with Red Square as her backdrop”), a long-standing trope used by the Far Right to attack liberals and Democrats for being unpatriotic by virtue of criticizing the U.S. while outside its borders. Commenting on that post, numerous Clinton supporters predictably denounced Stein as a traitor, saying “I don’t think it goes too far to suggest these are acts of sedition and possibly treason,” while the blogger himself dismissed objections over his “red-baiting” by saying “Putin is former KGB!” Journalists from major media outlets used all this to announce that Putin now has not one but (at least) two presidential candidates he controls:
(tweet)
(tweet)

So just like that, literally overnight, Clinton-supporting journalists and Democratic operatives converted Jill Stein into an agent of the Kremlin – all because she went to Russia and attended an event where Putin spoke.

So that’s the Democratic Party’s approach to the 2016 election. Those who question, criticize or are perceived to impede Hillary Clinton’s smooth, entitled path to the White House are vilified as stooges, sympathizers and/or agents of Russia: Trump, WikiLeaks, Sanders, The Intercept, Jill Stein. Other than loyal Clinton supporters, is there anyone left who is not covertly controlled by or in service to The Ruskies?

THERE ARE SO MANY LEVELS OF IRONY to the Democrats’ reliance on this ugly tactic. To begin with, one presidential candidate who actually has significant, questionable ties to Russia is named . . . Hillary Clinton. ... >>

Read the full article, watch the videos, read the tweets:
Democrats’ Tactic of Accusing Critics of Kremlin Allegiance Has Long, Ugly History in U.S.
https://theintercept.com/2016/08/08/dems-tactic-of-accusing-adversaries-of-kremlin-ties-and-russia-sympathies-has-long-history-in-us/


Below are excerpts from the text shown at the end of the video the Hillary supporters are claiming was anti-American and pro-Russian:

<< Stein noted that the United States, and to a lesser extent Russia, are wasting enormous sums of money on military spending that is not increasing the security of either nation.

"The United States is now embarking on a $1 trillion program to update its nuclear weaponry while we are slashing programs to fight hunger, address homelessness, and provide economic security for our people," Stein noted. "In Russia also, money runs short for critical needs because of the heavy burden of military spending. Imagine how much better off the world would be if our two nations could lead the way for the major powers to reduce the size of our military establishments. We could invest the money saved in something truly beneficial - such as job creation to expand renewable energy and stop climate change. Ending our multinational fossil fuel addiction will make disastrous wars for oil obsolete in the first place."

...

Stein continued, "Tomorrow I will meet with the foreign affairs chair of the Duma, the lower house of the Russian Parliament, to explore whether Russia would be receptive to a more collaborative approach to foreign policy that I have been talking about in my presidential campaign. Citizens of our countries and the world deserve a new commitment to collaborative dialogue between our governments to avert disastrous wars for geopolitical domination, destruction of the climate, and cascading injustices that promote violence and terrorism. Opening such a dialogue would be a first step towards real progress on the interlocking threats that both nations - and the world - are facing." >>

This can be seen not only at the end of that video, but also here:

In Moscow, Stein calls for foreign policy of principled collaboration
http://www.jill2016.com/stein_in_russia_calls_for_principled_collaboration
If this link will not work for you, go to the News section of the site and click through the pages till you get to this article, which was published on 13 December 2015.

So, once again, we see that these accusations are nothing but attempts by the Hillary for President campaign to smear Dr. Stein and besmirch her reputation.


Okay, okay, so that's just typical partisan political mudslinging.  But didn't she herself conflate Neoliberalism with Fascism when she was attacking Hillary Clinton?

I dunno what to tell you if you don't know much about the economic viewpoint known as "Neoliberalism," which has characterized the economic policy of every US President since Reagan took office in 1981.  To a traditional Democrat, who remembers "Liberalism" as something the Democrats once espoused, an ideal involving individual rights and so on, it might at first sound lovely.  But we're talking about an economic perspective here, not the pro-liberty ideals of the Enlightenment.  I suppose I could recommend that you go research the subject, but fortunately, I can give you some references on the matter.

Neoliberalism is a species of fascism
https://off-guardian.org/2016/07/13/neoliberalism-is-a-species-of-fascism/

Neoliberalism – the ideology at the root of all our problems
http://www.theguardian.com/books/2016/apr/15/neoliberalism-ideology-problem-george-monbiot

What is Neoliberalism?
http://www.corpwatch.org/article.php?id=376

America's Future Depends on Containing Neoliberalism
https://www.laprogressive.com/containing-neoliberalism/

We Have Reached an Age of Disintegration: How Greedy Neoliberalism and Deadly Wars Are Destroying Modern Life
http://www.alternet.org/world/too-many-wars-middle-east-and-north-africa

Neoliberalism Is Destroying Almost Everybody's Lives—How Many People Even Know What It Is?
http://www.alternet.org/environment/neoliberalism-destroying-almost-everybodys-lives-how-many-people-even-know-what-it

And if you don't trust all these Progressive Leftist sources I've been throwing at you, well, the moderately Liberal site "Wikipedia" has an article on "Neoliberalism," too.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Neoliberalism

This is our neoliberal nightmare: Hillary Clinton, Donald Trump, and why the market and the wealthy win every time
http://www.salon.com/2016/06/06/this_is_our_neoliberal_nightmare_hillary_clinton_donald_trump_and_why_the_market_and_the_wealthy_win_every_time/

From May:
Cornel West: Trump is a “narcissistic neo-fascist in the making”; Clinton is a hawkish “milquetoast neoliberal”
http://www.salon.com/2016/05/23/cornel_west_trump_is_a_narcissistic_neo_fascist_in_the_making_clinton_is_a_hawkish_milquetoast_neoliberal/

Even the IMF—the IMF!—Turns on Neoliberalism
http://www.commondreams.org/news/2016/05/27/even-imf-imf-turns-neoliberalism

You’re witnessing the death of neoliberalism – from within
http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2016/may/31/witnessing-death-neoliberalism-imf-economists?CMP=share_btn_tw

After Empowering the 1% and Impoverishing Millions, IMF Admits Neoliberalism a Failure
http://www.counterpunch.org/2016/06/01/after-empowering-the-1-and-impoverishing-millions-imf-admits-neoliberalism-a-failure/

The Real Reason They Attack Jill Stein
http://www.inquisitr.com/3399276/the-real-reason-they-attack-jill-stein/

So Hillary is a neoliberal, yes.  And Neoliberalism and Fascism certainly have a number of common features, yes.  So what exactly is the problem with Doctor Stein calling Hillary what she is?  Oh, right.  Hillary and her supporters can't easily get away with her favorite attack on an opponent in the case of Jill Stein, because calling her "sexist' would be, well, frankly, fucking ridiculous, so Hillary and her team have to manufacture other alleged "wrongs" for Jill, and twist her words, take them out of context, and so on, in an effort to discourage progressives from supporting Dr Stein's candidacy.


Finally, this:
Hillary Is Her Own "Spoiler," and Jill Stein Is Not a Scary Leftist Wacko
https://plus.google.com/u/0/+GiovannaX/posts/fm9Jx4FcNrR


There are your answers.  Next time you read or hear something disturbing about Dr Stein, please feel free to ask me about it (or just check this post, since I'll keep updating it as I encounter these accusations and research them), because I've probably already seen any given claim before most of you have, and have already done the research to verify or deny those claims.

Thanks for reading.  Now, please, Go Green in 2016.

PS:
If you would like a yard sign like the image I have used for this post, they are unfortunately no longer available, but you can get a Stein/Baraka yard sign and various other products here:
Jill Stein for President Store Products
http://jill-stein-for-president-store.myshopify.com/collections/all







The title of the post comes from Star Trek (The Original Series), Season 3, episode 5;  episode 60 overall;  production code 62.


Fair use notice
This blog contains copyrighted material the use of which may not been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. I am making such material available in my effort to advance understanding of scientific, environmental, political, human rights, economic, philosophical, psychological, cultural, and social issues, etc. 
I believe this constitutes a 'fair use' of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes.  No challenge of ownership is intended or implied.
If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond 'fair use', you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.