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  1. Link to Post #461
    United States Avalon Member Mike's Avatar
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    Default Re: Racism

    Quote Posted by Praxis (here)
    Quote Posted by Mike (here)
    Quote Posted by Mark/Rahkyt (here)
    Quote Posted by Mike (here)
    My remedies to the current situation won't resonate with you at all because I don't view western civilization as being an inherently evil, patriarchal society run by white supremacists. But it mostly involves facing what's in front of us (reality) with courage and strength(not inventing subjective narratives to avoid it), cultivating virtue, and embracing personal responsibility instead of blaming everyone and everything for one's issues (hey I warned you that it wouldn't resonate with you! lol)
    I understand exactly where you are coming from. Thank you for sharing your perspective in the thread.


    respectfully, i don't think you do. i think you still imagine that you're the good guy and i'm the bad guy. am i wrong?

    First, Mark is a good guy and I hope we all know(not imagine) this is true.

    Second, I supremely dislike what you are doing here with this statement. Like pick up artist level debate tactic. Dont you see yourself as the good guy?

    Are you the bad guy? No. Why would you think that anyone here thinks that? Are some of your points not what others think? Clearly yes we all do not agree on everything. We have a difference of opinions on some things and that is why we are here discussing. This doesnt mean that you are the bad guy in any sense.

    This feels like projection mike. Why try to pivot to the victim stance?

    Reverse Racism is a white nationalist dog whistle.

    It doesnt exist. There is racism.

    When a black person says "**** crackers, not allowed here" That isnt reverse racism. It is racism full stop. If a Mexican calls me snow white, it is racist full stop.

    Reverse racism is a perspective that only ethnonationalist have because think of how it shifts the perspective. It makes them now the victim.

    All racism is wrong no matter who it is directed at and where it came from. Humans are humans.


    Hi Praxis, have you watched the evergreen videos i posted here?

    Are you familiar with the James Damore debacle at google?

    Victimhood is what I'm speaking out against. If you're not familiar with how notions of "equity" can go way too far, then you'll have no idea what I'm trying to say here. Those 2 events are perfect case studies, and I highly suggest you take a look.

    Earlier Mark accused me of being passive aggressive. I'm not being passive aggressive at all. I'm just being aggressive! I've integrated that aggression from my shadow in a healthy way (reread that thread and all the other brilliant ones ive started lately, too many to count). Anyone who hasnt integrated theirs will view mine as being intrusive. But it's really just an excuse to assume moral high ground while avoiding the integration of their own shadow. It's cowardice masquerading as morality. Thats often what "taking the high ground" really is. It's not noble at all; it's a faux moral stance designed to remain willfully blind to one's shadow, all while justifying a failure to be honest with oneself.

    I don't feel like I've really talked to Mark at all so far. I'd love to talk to him, but I feel like I'm mostly speaking to an ideological persona. I don't feel ive really learned anything about him yet; I feel like I'm discussing and debating a spread sheet filled with universally cliched ideological talking points. My aggression has been an attempt to break thru that.
    Last edited by Mike; 28th February 2020 at 01:33.

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  3. Link to Post #462
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    Default Re: Racism

    I'm a lurker on this thread benefiting greatly from contributors so wanted to say thanks; especially to Mike and Mark.

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  5. Link to Post #463
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    Default Re: Racism

    Hmmm... (I clench my pale fists - then release, letting out a sigh...)

    I really appreciate so many posts on this thread. But recently, in relation to Mark/Rahkyt and Mike in particular – you are both (in my humble opinion) such bright, intelligent souls. Both making such valuable contributions. For entirely selfish reasons I almost wish distance was no object, as I'd love to make us all big pots of tea and sit by a warm, juicy fire so I could listen to you both expound for hours. And, as I'm a bit of a talker, sometimes especially when people inspire me, join in with my own contributions – as I seek to explore my own biases, compassion, and the sources of my viewpoints. In short, I'm really glad you're both here. Tea for everyone.

    Racism. What a monumental subject. With such a vile, painful and damaging history. I've tried several times to write a post for this thread, each draft coming in at half a dozen or so pages. I'll try a shorter version that will no doubt be inadequate by my own standards, before I even worry about others'.

    When I was a tiny child, my mother turned to me one day and reminded me that a friend of hers and my father's was coming over to visit. I remembered him and described him as “Chocolate coloured” and my mum, a sensitive soul, told me it was probably best not to describe him that way. My budding psyche was confused. Since while I didn't find chocolates delicious - I was a strange bod who didn't like candy - I did appreciate their dark, silky beauty. Things are different now. I've just gobbled two Ferrero Rocher, chocolates containing both brown and light bits. Although the lighter (whiter) parts are nuts. So, perhaps not the best metaphor for integration, on a thread about race. (Ahem.)

    My scruffy-hermit attempts at interracial humour aside...

    Institutional racism obviously exists. I could write pages on that alone. Equally, racism can and does exist in the minds or attitudes of people of all races. But that in itself cannot be a distraction from addressing institutional biases where they exist. In addition, people of the same race do not always agree on every accusation of racism levelled at people of another race.

    Sometimes, when I look around at the world, at the problems facing people of all colours and races, the ways in which various people (of all races and nationalities) are attempting to handle it can seem like we are still just fighting for scraps from 'the master's table.'

    It's one of the reasons I've spent so much time on Avalon writing about and exploring the 'Free Energy' topic. The notion that to completely remodel our world we need to start at the root, addressing the energy that fuels it, both spiritually and materially. The premise that we need systems of clean, abundant and environmentally-responsible energy for a radically new economic infrastructure, and a philosophy that seeks to provide true equality of opportunity for all, with an aim towards a shared peace and profoundly loving experience of life. It won't be easy getting there, and that's if we don't annihilate ourselves first with bombs, frequencies or a weaponised virus. Etc.

    So many issues in society, including racism and counter-productive competition, have aspects of their foundation or their support-structures rooted in economic inequality. It's hard to resolve that when we're operating from a system that is, inherently, environmentally destructive. It inevitably colours our ability to grow, and to really come from a place of deepest integrity. I don't plan to elaborate further on that in this space. It would risk being a tangent on a thread that is needed space to address the roots and existence of racial ideas, experiences and constructs.

    I will note however, that when it comes to growing such a system, a new system with a clean energy foundation, certain cultures can and need to learn from the viewpoints, and spiritual essence or experience, of what have been (historically) 'outsiders', or oppressed and/or sidelined minorities in their midst. From black communities, to Native Americans, Hispanics, Asians, Australian aboriginals, the list goes on. For that to happen those groups need their voices to be heard. And deeply listened to. You also have people in Asia and Africa who are keen to learn from and adapt the cultural fruits and ideas from what have been countries with predominantly white cultural leaders. People, everywhere, want to learn from each other. And many are denied access, whether the censorship is overt (e.g. China) or less obvious (e.g. North America.)

    Questions remain over the best way to facilitate that access. But freedom of speech is and will remain crucial to it. Which is why I sympathise and agree with Mike's point that using accusations of racism (or transphobia) to shut people down, without giving them a proper opportunity to defend themselves, is a dangerous thing. If people want their ideas and/or voices to be taken seriously, respected, they have to apply that principal to all.

    Many years ago I used to write letters, based on appeals by Amnesty International. I later came to question aspects of their organisation, but that's irrelevant to this particular story. Amnesty would email people cases so we could write letters to appeal to politicians, law enforcement etc, to reconsider the situations of an individual or group whose rights were being ignored or oppressed. Individuals who were abused or unjustly incarcerated. The first letter that gave me cause to doubt, cause to deeply consider whether I wanted to write on the person's behalf, was one of capital punishment. The murder the man had committed was so vile, that even though I did not support the death penalty, I wondered what right I had to ask for his sentence to be commuted, when I had not experienced the pain, the loss, of his victims or the victims' loved ones. What shifted me back to a place of principal was reading how the murder victims' closest relatives had themselves decided they did not want to punish the perpetrator in that way. Perhaps they had decided that murder was not the path to forgiveness that would ultimately set them free from part of their pain.

    An eye for an eye will leave the world blind. If you are against murder, why support another form of it in the death sentence? Equally, we either believe in freedom of speech for those whose opinions we disagree with, or we don't believe in it at all. We cannot create a truly new and respectful system if it is built on hypocrisy. Built on the killing of a fundamental right. I agree with Mike that some of the questionable attitudes towards this are reaching into other areas of our lives, from corporate practices to internet censorship. The effects may linger, in policy or law, long after the furore of individual cases dies down in the media.

    There are no doubt many and layered reasons why the civil rights movement in the U.S., or Mandela's road to ending and healing apartheid in South Africa, or Gandhi's path to freeing India from colonial oppression, did not result in utopias in the decades that followed. But it pays to ask, what were the deepest obstacles? Why hasn't the civil rights movement in the U.S. achieved more than it has? What is absent? It would be easy to say unlimited funds, or laser weaponry and super-advanced psychic power in the hands of civil rights crusaders. But to go deeper... If it was strength in the black people, or the white people, everyone involved - where do we find that missing strength?

    Some answers are going to be different for people of different races or backgrounds. It's obvious that different groups are going to have very different experiences, histories, emotional and physical DNA memories, and sets of ancestors flowing in their veins. Some answers, conversely, are going to be simple, and the same for all. Some answers are going to require us all working together, to identify hidden enemies or forces of control – whether they are within us or safe in ivory towers or other dimensions.

    On conflict, I read a quote attributed to Malcolm X which I agree with :

    Concerning nonviolence: it is criminal to teach a man not to defend himself when he is the constant victim of brutal attacks.”

    https://teachingamericanhistory.org/...-independence/

    There is a danger that in appealing to minorities or oppressed peoples to be peaceful in protest, it will be seen as attempt to further pacify, to silence, to refuse to acknowledge the vast pain inflicted by silk-tongued or savage oppressors. That it will undermine the passion required to drive change. It is a legitimate danger. There are necessary fights that would never have been won had there been no warriors, only kind words.

    But I'm also reminded of something Alice Walker wrote in a letter to Bill Clinton, while he was President, which I first read decades ago. About harmlessness. Alice Walker strikes me as more than just an interesting and powerful writer, with a rich mind and a deep heart. Writing to Clinton, talking with David Icke, loving her own people and 'the other' through life. She is an explorer. I can't really do her soul or contribution justice in a paragraph. But anyway... From her words to Clinton :

    The world, I believe, is easier to change than we think. And harder. Because the change begins with each one of us saying to ourselves, and meaning it: I will not harm anyone or anything in this moment. Until, like recovering alcoholics, we can look back on an hour, a day, a week, a year, of comparative harmlessness.”

    I doubt this is an entirely accurate reproduction of her letter, but I found a copy at this link, and recall enough parts that I think it's worth reading despite what may be inaccuracies or typos :

    http://www.hartford-hwp.com/archives/43b/118.html

    It's hard to embody such 'harmlessness' when the wolves are at the door. Wolves, ever circling, in the flesh or in your head. Very hard indeed. But as Alice Walker described, even though I am mindful that the context in which she wrote is very specific and could take pages to explore and unpack in itself, perhaps some things are easier, at times simpler, than we think.

    It concerns me that some of what's going on currently has its roots in power-plays rather than progress. There are murky politics. There is the risk of powerful, wealthy (in some cases white-skinned) social engineers using this very issue, racism, for their own ends to manipulate groups in certain directions via institutions and the media. I've read and heard non-white people making the same claim – that the ploy is dangerous. How it pits people against each other and uses / abuses their skin colour, gender, nationality or cultural inheritance to divide, to more easily conquer them. Perhaps it is elitists enslaving people in a new (yet not so new) way. Hard to navigate that trap in the midst of very real grievances. I imagine some minorities are aware of it, but using it to fund their objectives. Playing the system. They are in a difficult position.

    When I consider all of the above, and try to reduce it to a simple principal, I believe the foundation on which a new system is built will influence deeply the quality of what it births. Will determine how new it really is. And none of this feels easy when the game is rigged.

    You've been posting some great stuff Mark/Rahkyt. Thank you. The writing by Nate Hochman that you copied over in Post #450 made some really valuable points, and was an interesting read. And Mike, you've been posting some really valuable and necessary stuff too. You both seem (in this scribbler's humble opinion) basically awesome.

    Deepest respect and love to all

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  7. Link to Post #464
    United States Avalon Member Mike's Avatar
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    Default Re: Racism

    That was beautiful Melinda Thanks. You really have a wonderful soothing energy.

    I didn't expect to get so involved in the thread, but it's an important topic that deserves a few points of view.

    And now that I've expressed mine, and my little chapter is written, I don't have anything else to add. Mark and Denno, no hard feelings.

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  9. Link to Post #465
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    Default Re: Racism

    Quote Posted by Mike (here)
    Victimhood is what I'm speaking out against. If you're not familiar with how notions of "equity" can go way too far, then you'll have no idea what I'm trying to say here. Those 2 events are perfect case studies, and I highly suggest you take a look.

    Earlier Mark accused me of being passive aggressive. I'm not being passive aggressive at all. I'm just being aggressive! I've integrated that aggression from my shadow in a healthy way (reread that thread and all the other brilliant ones ive started lately, too many to count). Anyone who hasnt integrated theirs will view mine as being intrusive. But it's really just an excuse to assume moral high ground while avoiding the integration of their own shadow. It's cowardice masquerading as morality. Thats often what "taking the high ground" really is. It's not noble at all; it's a faux moral stance designed to remain willfully blind to one's shadow, all while justifying a failure to be honest with oneself.

    I don't feel like I've really talked to Mark at all so far. I'd love to talk to him, but I feel like I'm mostly speaking to an ideological persona. I don't feel ive really learned anything about him yet; I feel like I'm discussing and debating a spread sheet filled with universally cliched ideological talking points. My aggression has been an attempt to break thru that.

    Maybe Mark's approach has been an attempt to break through your aggression.

    We are literally holding children in cages because they are the wrong color and culture and you are screaming about Evergreen college. I have ZERO time for you anymore.

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  11. Link to Post #466
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    Default Re: Racism

    Academia is creating a parallel reality right out of Gulliver's Travels, where countries go to war over which end of an egg should be cracked. It's become completely loonie.

    It isn't Mike who is ignoring children in cages, nor Jordan Peterson. It's the students and those who cater to them who have created an ideological wall around themselves using the mortar of narcissism, naïveté and entitlement. The wall is so impenetrable and tall they can't see beyond it to the actual deep suffering going on.

    What has made the deepest impression on me in the last year is being part of a vast writer's group, many of whom are well educated black women. In all the essays that have been written by this group, I don't think I've read one about Ferguson, Missouri riots and their causes. Nor have I read anything about the prison system. What they write a LOT about is all of the "micro-aggressions" they have to put up with when dating white men.

    In Canada, a good 10% of the text in the leading newspaper is devoted to hair splitting gender non- issues but curiously, precious little text about the ongoing horror of people freezing to death in the winter on the streets. Amd that frosts me,mid you'll forgive a bad pun!

    And Praxis, just a suggestion -- before you write someone off, send them a pm and try to get to know them, behind the scenes. Most importantly, watch their linked videos.

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  13. Link to Post #467
    Canada Avalon Member Ernie Nemeth's Avatar
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    Default Re: Racism

    I'd like to revisit a topic I've been exposed to recently, at least I think I have been exposed to from my point of view.

    I am trying to break into a new but very much related area of electrical work - robotic control and industrial automated systems.

    I am running into a strange situation. My knowledge is not a commodity as much as a liability in this setting. That is one thing.

    The other is I was wondering where all the minorities we are bringing to the country are working. Well, I found them, they are in these industries I want to break into. Except the rules have changed in these places of employment. The focus is on obedience and following rules, and of course making them. The labor gains we have enjoyed in past decades are being eroded in these places and those who know better are not wanted or tolerated.

    Collaboration, for example, beyond quickly discussing who will do what, is frowned upon, as is any form of socialization. The overview is the first casualty as the workers are only concerned with their own job security. That overview is as important, especially to service workers, as is job-specific knowledge. The logical flow-chart of the plant's operation and organization is withheld from those that need it the most. Questions and study in that regard are not welcome because the activities of the service workers has been identified and listed. There is no room or need for innovation or individualized effort.

    So here it comes.

    When I look around I see this is not true of all in these industries. In fact, the minorities are encouraged to excel, to mingle, to collaborate and have each others' back. It is only the long-term Canadians receiving this treatment. I would say white but it is not only whites but blacks being targeted by this tactic. Our rights and privileges are being removed and there is not a thing we can do about it. I was told to get my hands out of my pockets while discussing technical issues, like some 18 yr old kid with an attitude, by a young minority overseer who was trained in the old British influenced rigid style of everything by the book and no room for novelty school.

    Am I seeing reverse-racism or am I seeing my own prejudice? A little of both perhaps?

    Sure could use some helpful perspective on this one.

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    Default Re: Racism

    Quote Posted by AutumnW (here)
    Academia is creating a parallel reality right out of Gulliver's Travels, where countries go to war over which end of an egg should be cracked. It's become completely loonie.

    It isn't Mike who is ignoring children in cages, nor Jordan Peterson. It's the students and those who cater to them who have created an ideological wall around themselves using the mortar of narcissism, naïveté and entitlement. The wall is so impenetrable and tall they can't see beyond it to the actual deep suffering going on.

    What has made the deepest impression on me in the last year is being part of a vast writer's group, many of whom are well educated black women. In all the essays that have been written by this group, I don't think I've read one about Ferguson, Missouri riots and their causes. Nor have I read anything about the prison system. What they write a LOT about is all of the "micro-aggressions" they have to put up with when dating white men.

    In Canada, a good 10% of the text in the leading newspaper is devoted to hair splitting gender non- issues but curiously, precious little text about the ongoing horror of people freezing to death in the winter on the streets. Amd that frosts me,mid you'll forgive a bad pun!

    And Praxis, just a suggestion -- before you write someone off, send them a pm and try to get to know them, behind the scenes. Most importantly, watch their linked videos.
    I would recommend you go back and read what we said to each other. After reading, do you feel Mike addressed any of my comments? I do not.

    So we really arent discussing here but rather he is spouting Jordan Peterson Talking points and feeling very full of ego.

    Again. We are holding children in cages and he is talking about a tiny college nobody cares about or goes to. If I went to evergreen maybe I could comment or care. Since evergreen doesnt affect me but the immigration policy of the US does, I actually care about immigration policy and not what is happening on a small college campus.

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    Default Re: Racism

    Ah, if only it was limited to a small group in our global sea.  Sadly it is a global hot potato that has invented extremist ideologies that are quite literally shutting down free speech along with insidiuosly creating massive division amongst good people by branding them with false accusations of being guilty of heinous acts against humanity.

    I am so strapped for time so cannot provide a comprehensive list of independent media outlets, research papers, authors, etc who are tackling this problem - but Mark and Mike have provided good ground.  Here's one though to demonstrate that Mike's discussion on Evergreen is being used as a good summary, with visual proof to boot.

    Disclaimer:  This article is from a political magazine whose leaning/bias will not appeal to some but the article captures the essence of the Evergreen discussion in my opinion.  There is so much more out there though.


    https://www.spiked-online.com/2020/0...a-race-denier/

    EXTRACT:

    (...)

    And yet for all their different styles and success rates, these two groups share something incredibly important in common: they are obsessed with race. Genuinely, sometimes even hysterically obsessed with it. Indeed, my battering by both sides last week gave me a stark and enlightening realsation: both of these camps think of me, and presumably everyone else, as little more than a racial category. In my case, as a ‘white man’. The speed and firmness with which both sides reduced me to a white man was striking. The racists, including in a weird YouTube video one of them made about me, informed me that I am a white man who is insufficiently proud of my white heritage or of my genetic superiority to blacks. The wokeists denounced me as a white man who, by dint of my cultural heritage, can have no understanding of the racial complexities of modern Britain. (Even worse, I am a ‘mediocre white man’, in the words of the people at Novara Media. Perhaps I need to make a greater effort to strive for Aryan non-mediocrity.)

    To both groups, I am a disappointing white man. I am a disappointment to my race. The racist abusers of science who propagate the foul idea of white genetic superiority see me as a self-hating white man who refuses to acknowledge my genetic supremacy to people of colour. The wokeist promoters of identitarian difference see me as a self-denying white man who refuses to acknowledge my inherited privileges, the way in which history has bestowed on me the category of ‘privileged’ while bestowing on black people the category of ‘victim’.

    Neither side allows reality to leak in. That I am less intelligent than many black people makes not a blind bit of difference to the racist right who think I should wallow in my ‘superiority’. That I come from an Irish working-class background and am a first-generation Briton makes no difference to the wokeist left who think I should self-flagellate for my ‘privilege’. All truth and nuance is erased by both the science and the culture of racial myopia; by both the scientific racists of the new right and the cultural racialists of the woke left.

    (...)

    That we live in a new era of racial thinking, in which so much of educational, political and public life is organised around these new-sounding and dangerous racial ideas, is clear from the fact that it has become incredibly difficult to question and push back against woke racialisation. Indeed, there is now open ridicule of anyone who says: ‘I prefer the Martin Luther King approach of judging people by their character rather than skin colour.’ Woke activists mercilessly mock people who say this. In the US, some campuses describe such a worldview as a ‘racial microaggression’. So to argue against racial thinking is racist. This is mad, Orwellian nonsense.

    We cannot let them demean and destroy the MLK belief that character is more important than colour, because this belief is the very essence of a progressive, humanist politics. Both the alt-right and the woke left want you to think racially. Refuse. Rebel. Do the right thing: view all people as individuals with agency, autonomy, aspirations and character, regardless of their skin colour, their ethnicity or their heritage. Fight for the King approach to humanity over the deeply destructive racialism of the flagging racist right and the ascendant woke left
    .

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    Default Re: Racism

    Quote Posted by Gemma13 (here)
    I'm a lurker on this thread benefiting greatly from contributors so wanted to say thanks; especially to Mike and Mark.
    Thank you Gemma. Thank you also, for reaching out and letting us know you've been reading. That always feels nice, as for issues like this, it is often hard to get folks to comment because it is so close to home in so many ways. So you are appreciated for being present and accounted for!

    Quote Posted by Melinda (here)
    Racism. What a monumental subject. With such a vile, painful and damaging history. I've tried several times to write a post for this thread, each draft coming in at half a dozen or so pages. I'll try a shorter version that will no doubt be inadequate by my own standards, before I even worry about others'.
    Thank you for sharing this post and I hope, in the future, you will feel freer to share others as well. All perspectives and realities are valid, here, and it is as safe a space as I and the moderators can make it for feeling open. If you are thinking or feeling something, others are too. And they will read your words and say, 'Yes! Someone said it, thank you!' Even though they may think that instead of giving a thanks, or commenting. Every word counts. So thank you, again, for these.

    Quote Posted by Melinda (here)
    When I was a tiny child, my mother turned to me one day and reminded me that a friend of hers and my father's was coming over to visit. I remembered him and described him as “Chocolate coloured” and my mum, a sensitive soul, told me it was probably best not to describe him that way. My budding psyche was confused. Since while I didn't find chocolates delicious - I was a strange bod who didn't like candy - I did appreciate their dark, silky beauty. Things are different now. I've just gobbled two Ferrero Rocher, chocolates containing both brown and light bits. Although the lighter (whiter) parts are nuts. So, perhaps not the best metaphor for integration, on a thread about race. (Ahem.)
    What an elegant story-telling style you have. Very visual and an early experience that obviously had a marked influence upon your later thoughts about these issues.

    Quote Posted by Melinda (here)
    Institutional racism obviously exists. I could write pages on that alone. Equally, racism can and does exist in the minds or attitudes of people of all races. But that in itself cannot be a distraction from addressing institutional biases where they exist. In addition, people of the same race do not always agree on every accusation of racism levelled at people of another race.

    Sometimes, when I look around at the world, at the problems facing people of all colours and races, the ways in which various people (of all races and nationalities) are attempting to handle it can seem like we are still just fighting for scraps from 'the master's table.'
    Absolutely. Which underlies all of my efforts to get people to see past their partisan bias, which is present even here, to understand that we all have to work together and get beyond the created differences that were designed to keep us from working together in the first place. I've explored how those differences were created in the mid-1600s here in the USA and how they've been exported to Western nations across the world to institutionalize this hierarchy based upon a completely irrational form of judgment, skin-color.

    Those masters remain content every time we concentrate on minor events and lose sight of the larger and more important goal.

    Quote Posted by Melinda (here)
    It's one of the reasons I've spent so much time on Avalon writing about and exploring the 'Free Energy' topic. The notion that to completely remodel our world we need to start at the root, addressing the energy that fuels it, both spiritually and materially. The premise that we need systems of clean, abundant and environmentally-responsible energy for a radically new economic infrastructure, and a philosophy that seeks to provide true equality of opportunity for all, with an aim towards a shared peace and profoundly loving experience of life. It won't be easy getting there, and that's if we don't annihilate ourselves first with bombs, frequencies or a weaponised virus. Etc.
    I will look for your work. I don't get out and about much lately but I will make a point of it as the topic of 'free energy' is one that will help to free people from the systemic oppression that has dogged oceanic humanity for so long.

    Quote Posted by Melinda (here)
    So many issues in society, including racism and counter-productive competition, have aspects of their foundation or their support-structures rooted in economic inequality. It's hard to resolve that when we're operating from a system that is, inherently, environmentally destructive. It inevitably colours our ability to grow, and to really come from a place of deepest integrity. I don't plan to elaborate further on that in this space. It would risk being a tangent on a thread that is needed space to address the roots and existence of racial ideas, experiences and constructs.

    I will note however, that when it comes to growing such a system, a new system with a clean energy foundation, certain cultures can and need to learn from the viewpoints, and spiritual essence or experience, of what have been (historically) 'outsiders', or oppressed and/or sidelined minorities in their midst. From black communities, to Native Americans, Hispanics, Asians, Australian aboriginals, the list goes on. For that to happen those groups need their voices to be heard. And deeply listened to. You also have people in Asia and Africa who are keen to learn from and adapt the cultural fruits and ideas from what have been countries with predominantly white cultural leaders. People, everywhere, want to learn from each other. And many are denied access, whether the censorship is overt (e.g. China) or less obvious (e.g. North America.)
    Well said. I am glad to highlight it again.

    Quote Posted by Melinda (here)
    Questions remain over the best way to facilitate that access. But freedom of speech is and will remain crucial to it. Which is why I sympathise and agree with Mike's point that using accusations of racism (or transphobia) to shut people down, without giving them a proper opportunity to defend themselves, is a dangerous thing. If people want their ideas and/or voices to be taken seriously, respected, they have to apply that principal to all.
    Agreed. Those accusations of racism, depending upon who makes them, and what they are talking about specifically, can be valid or invalid, depending upon the context and, again, the specific instance.

    There is racism. And people say racist things.

    And, sometimes, it needs to be called out.

    But, if that instance is one of ignorance or misunderstanding, then of course it should be explained.

    Quote Posted by Melinda (here)
    An eye for an eye will leave the world blind. If you are against murder, why support another form of it in the death sentence? Equally, we either believe in freedom of speech for those whose opinions we disagree with, or we don't believe in it at all. We cannot create a truly new and respectful system if it is built on hypocrisy. Built on the killing of a fundamental right. I agree with Mike that some of the questionable attitudes towards this are reaching into other areas of our lives, from corporate practices to internet censorship. The effects may linger, in policy or law, long after the furore of individual cases dies down in the media.
    That is so. But this thread is not the place to go in-depth in exploration of those separate issues even though they are deeply intertwined, mentioned as asides and in support of the discussion about racism, the LGBTQIA movement is certainly going to come up as it should. This could become a thread on all of the linked exposures the masses have to the excesses of privilege and oppression, and validly so. The identity politics movement is now vast, and includes people on what used to be called the Right.

    This phenomenon, which is not new, as European Americans in this context were the first to employ identity politics, is something we can talk about and stay true to the intent of the thread.

    Quote Posted by Melinda (here)
    There are no doubt many and layered reasons why the civil rights movement in the U.S., or Mandela's road to ending and healing apartheid in South Africa, or Gandhi's path to freeing India from colonial oppression, did not result in utopias in the decades that followed. But it pays to ask, what were the deepest obstacles? Why hasn't the civil rights movement in the U.S. achieved more than it has? What is absent? It would be easy to say unlimited funds, or laser weaponry and super-advanced psychic power in the hands of civil rights crusaders. But to go deeper... If it was strength in the black people, or the white people, everyone involved - where do we find that missing strength?
    We find it in that space of desperation that exists when people realize they have nothing further to lose. Too many, on all sides, are currently too comfortable to make these changes because they are afraid it will take something from them and theirs. It is my opinion that we all have more to lose before we are desparate enough, as a human collective, to truly and effectively make the change necessary to shift society to that higher modality of beingness.

    And it will take more collective trauma to get there.

    Quote Posted by Melinda (here)
    It concerns me that some of what's going on currently has its roots in power-plays rather than progress. There are murky politics. There is the risk of powerful, wealthy (in some cases white-skinned) social engineers using this very issue, racism, for their own ends to manipulate groups in certain directions via institutions and the media. I've read and heard non-white people making the same claim – that the ploy is dangerous. How it pits people against each other and uses / abuses their skin colour, gender, nationality or cultural inheritance to divide, to more easily conquer them. Perhaps it is elitists enslaving people in a new (yet not so new) way. Hard to navigate that trap in the midst of very real grievances. I imagine some minorities are aware of it, but using it to fund their objectives. Playing the system. They are in a difficult position.
    Yes. All "power players" do it, from Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton to Donald Trump Jr. and Steve Bannon. It's not a new way, it is what has been called the wages of whiteness, which, by their very existence, call into existence their opposition, both using the same tactics for different populations, in effect, mirroring each other creating a potentially equal, although seemingly oppositional, karmic effect.



    Quote Posted by Melinda (here)
    When I consider all of the above, and try to reduce it to a simple principal, I believe the foundation on which a new system is built will influence deeply the quality of what it births. Will determine how new it really is. And none of this feels easy when the game is rigged.

    You've been posting some great stuff Mark/Rahkyt. Thank you. The writing by Nate Hochman that you copied over in Post #450 made some really valuable points, and was an interesting read.
    The game is rigged. And when we play the games of the "riggers", by falling for the ideological traps and conundrums they set, we are falling headlong right into the parameters of conflict that their Machiavellian designs have placed in this reality version to distract us. Thank you for the gift of presence and sharing these valuable words. Blessings.
    Last edited by Mark/Rahkyt; 2nd March 2020 at 16:01. Reason: add discussion

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    Default Re: Racism

    Hello, Autumn. It is nice to see your words here.

    Quote Posted by AutumnW (here)
    Academia is creating a parallel reality right out of Gulliver's Travels, where countries go to war over which end of an egg should be cracked. It's become completely loonie.
    I'm not sure what real world example of nations going to war you are referencing here. I understand your deeper point but would submit to you that the system as it is, is already loonie. In every aspect. So in mediating that, it is not surprising when some go to the oppositional extreme. So these things should be expected, but they are not indicative of where most people, of all persuasions, fall on the spectrum.

    Quote Posted by AutumnW (here)
    It's the students and those who cater to them who have created an ideological wall around themselves using the mortar of narcissism, naïveté and entitlement. The wall is so impenetrable and tall they can't see beyond it to the actual deep suffering going on.
    I do not agree with your assessment but understand you are far from alone in making it. What you are witnessing in those videos is deep, abiding pain, caused by actual suffering. Those kids came from somewhere. You can tell by the emotion in their voice that even though they are irrational-sounding, their protestations and extremes are based upon real world experience. I have already addressed this in-depth in discussion with Mike but I wanted to reiterate it momentarily just to highlight the reality of what living in sub-human conditions of humane treatment can push people to do. These kids crossed some boundaries with their kidnapping and stalking, yes. There is no excuse for it.

    Quote Posted by AutumnW (here)
    In Canada, a good 10% of the text in the leading newspaper is devoted to hair splitting gender non- issues but curiously, precious little text about the ongoing horror of people freezing to death in the winter on the streets. Amd that frosts me,mid you'll forgive a bad pun!
    You are forgiven. J/k

    And yes, a lot of this critical theoretical discussion does get down into the details of micro-aggressions, on the part of racial issues, I'm not all that familar with "gender non-issues" as you phrase it. That amount of detail pisses some folks off and irritates others, because they do not understand and have not experienced the emotional turmoil that often accompanies these experiences. And that can't be changed, it is just what is. This nation has to go through this process, as ugly as it is, to live up to its ideals. And as interconnected parts of a global system, our gross quantum entanglement ensures that all of these lessons are internalized, if not learned, by the entire human family at some depth of understanding.

    Quote Posted by Ernie Nemeth (here)
    I am running into a strange situation. My knowledge is not a commodity as much as a liability in this setting. That is one thing.

    The other is I was wondering where all the minorities we are bringing to the country are working. Well, I found them, they are in these industries I want to break into. Except the rules have changed in these places of employment. The focus is on obedience and following rules, and of course making them. The labor gains we have enjoyed in past decades are being eroded in these places and those who know better are not wanted or tolerated.

    Collaboration, for example, beyond quickly discussing who will do what, is frowned upon, as is any form of socialization. The overview is the first casualty as the workers are only concerned with their own job security. That overview is as important, especially to service workers, as is job-specific knowledge. The logical flow-chart of the plant's operation and organization is withheld from those that need it the most. Questions and study in that regard are not welcome because the activities of the service workers has been identified and listed. There is no room or need for innovation or individualized effort.
    That sounds very echthroi-ish. Why do you think these kinds of draconian parameters have been placed upon these workers?

    Quote Posted by Ernie Nemeth (here)
    When I look around I see this is not true of all in these industries. In fact, the minorities are encouraged to excel, to mingle, to collaborate and have each others' back. It is only the long-term Canadians receiving this treatment. I would say white but it is not only whites but blacks being targeted by this tactic. Our rights and privileges are being removed and there is not a thing we can do about it. I was told to get my hands out of my pockets while discussing technical issues, like some 18 yr old kid with an attitude, by a young minority overseer who was trained in the old British influenced rigid style of everything by the book and no room for novelty school.

    Am I seeing reverse-racism or am I seeing my own prejudice? A little of both perhaps?

    Sure could use some helpful perspective on this one.
    It sounds like a misguided attempt on the part of the company to integrate the foreign folks into the company culture and, into greater Canadian society. From my vantage, it looks like that space has been redesigned to this end, not merely as a work space for employees but some type of training ground for a radical form of societal integration. It also sounds like the new residents are being elevated above Canadian citizens in a very overt and precise manner, as if your concerns and needs are not as important or even the company's concern. You found the job, in a "hidden" sector, but the job was not designed for you and other citizens and so you are more of a nuisance than even a concern.

    As I do not have access to another perspective, best heard from one of the newcomers to provide an alternate viewpoint, I cannot say if it is a little of both, one or the other. But it does sound as if there are definite issues of concern.

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    Default Re: Racism

    Quote Posted by Gemma13 (here)
    Disclaimer:  This article is from a political magazine whose leaning/bias will not appeal to some but the article captures the essence of the Evergreen discussion in my opinion.  There is so much more out there though.
    Thank you, Gemma13.


    Quote Posted by Gemma13 (here)
    And yet for all their different styles and success rates, these two groups share something incredibly important in common: they are obsessed with race. Genuinely, sometimes even hysterically obsessed with it.
    That was an interesting point and perspective. Thank you. I only, really, have one question for you. Where did this hysterical obsession with race begin and how?

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    Default Re: Racism

    From my inner perspective, there are but two kinds of people- those who know and those who know not. Knowing from within that the person with too big/too small nose are another uniquely endowed being with long history, qualities and experiences we can’t match and vice versa.
    There are two kinds of people really, those who crossed the sea of doubts and illusions about it and those who did not.
    All speak the same but some keep their doubts and illusions like hidden treasures. They can be nice on outside but they’ll still make decisions based on their preferred social models.

    Often I just want to shout at someone “don’t be racist” because I’ve seen too much already and how bad it can get.
    Truth comes from within : we should not automatically give in or give up on each other for being different.

    In real times I feel, there are still few people who know against the millions of doubters.

    If I look into Tibetan culture for example, it was kind of closed minded and xenophobic from inside for thousands years. Explained as “protective mechanism” of its spiritual and social survival like any other fragile community faced rather brutal ends to it and exile situation: pushing everyone out of their safe shell and claustrophobic dogma about foreigners and the world out there.
    The same has happened to millions of cultures in the past,
    including Japanese and Chinese cultures and people of recent times.

    Even then, many of those who escaped and survived still carry an inner sting of pride in “being different” for being ethnically different makes them feel better than “everyone else”.

    I am asking myself recently if that sting in humans is some kind of residual brain chemical that we don’t need that acts like poison, a toxin, translates as dangerous sarcasm and dirty humor where we give love and wisdom otherwise.

    I’d love to discover why is this happening *really* as all the *issue* makes no sense otherwise and there has to be a clue to human negativity other than “being different”, not looking good enough to somebody, not being the right “mating model” and so forth.

    There’s so much brain power behind every little face, so why being bastards to each other, commenting on whether ya look more like Milky Way or Mars Bar.
    Some people should stay contained in kindergartens forever and discuss their appearances, forever.


    With smiles

    🙏🌟🕊❤️

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    Default Re: Racism

    So, we're back to the topic of topics once again.

    President Lyndon B. Johnson, who graduated from Texas State University - then Southwest Texas State - here in San Marcos, TX, said:
    Quote "If you can convince the lowest white man he's better than the best colored man, he won't notice you're picking his pocket. Hell, give him somebody to look down on, and he'll empty his pockets for you."
    Which is the perfect expression of wetikonomics and white supremacy/nationalism, as expressed in the following article and this entire thread. A slight aside, all cultures/societies change, so attempting to preserve a culture/society "intact" is fruitless, it has never happened and never will as cultures adapt and adopt over time, always have and always will. There are no "good old days" to go back to, either. Because we can never go back.

    I suppose we never really leave this topic as it infects all avenues of human expression and interaction. I want to be very specific, in this instance. We have spent many words and many instances and many threads in discussing this topic in the Project Avalon Forum. Wildly at times, measured and considerate in others. We have been "infected" in our discussions and seen instances of mass psychic sickness here, at times, so it is always a difficult topic to talk about directly. Some other things that "happen" include long posts not posting, requiring new writing or copy/pasting, technical issues that can be influenced also by astrological retrograde, extreme computer glitching. So be as aware and as conscious as possible.

    In that vein:
    Quote “One of the tragic characteristics of the wetiko psychosis is that it spreads partly by resistance to it. That is, those who try to fight wetiko sometimes, in order to survive, adopt wetiko values. Thus, when they win, they lose.”
    This is a direct quote from the article below. And it is true, as we've recently discussed in this thread to distraction. Which is the point. Distraction by endless differentiation, subjective consideration and nomination of levels and levels of distinct formulations of victimization.

    I'd like to concentrate our discussion here and moving forward upon how wetiko relates to racism and how the current form of its infective capacity has infiltrated Western Civilization and each one of us here talking about it in Project Avalon as well as every soul reading these words out there in cyberspace.

    Hopefully, by remaining specific and using personal and collective examples from across the globe, we can share some pertinent knowledge that can help each of us to figure out how to underwhelm the virus's capacity to subvert our good intentions and fall back, once more, into the traps it sets on all sides. It is necessary to be self-critical and policing when discussing this topic, because
    Quote We are all host carriers of wetiko now.
    Seeing Wetiko: On Capitalism, Mind Viruses, and Antidotes for a World in Transition

    By Alnoor Ladha, Martin Kirk

    Quote It’s delicate confronting these priests of the golden bull
    They preach from the pulpit of the bottom line
    Their minds rustle with million dollar bills
    You say Silver burns a hole in your pocket
    And Gold burns a hole in your soul
    Well, uranium burns a hole in forever
    It just gets out of control.

    Buffy Sainte-Marie, “The Priests of the Golden Bull”
    What if we told you that humanity is being driven to the brink of extinction by an illness? That all the poverty, the climate devastation, the perpetual war, and consumption fetishism we see all around us have roots in a mass psychological infection? What if we went on to say that this infection is not just highly communicable but also self-replicating, according to the laws of cultural evolution, and that it remains so clandestine in our psyches that most hosts will, as a condition of their infected state, vehemently deny that they are infected? What if we then told you that this ‘mind virus’ can be described as a form of cannibalism. Yes, cannibalism. Not necessarily in the literal flesh-eating sense but rather the idea of consuming others – human and non-human – as a means of securing personal wealth and supremacy.

    You may dismiss this line of thinking as New Age woo-woo or, worse, a leftist conspiracy theory. But this approach of viewing the transmission of ideas as a key determinant of the emergent reality is increasingly validated by various branches of science, including evolutionary theory, quantum physics, cognitive linguistics, and epigenetics.

    The history of this infection is long, strange, and dark. But it leads to hope.

    Viruses of the Mind

    Quote The New World fell not to a sword but to a meme.
    Daniel Quinn
    One of the most well-accepted scientific theories that helps explain the power of idea-spreading is memetics.

    Memes are to culture what genes are to biology: the base unit of evolution. The term was originally coined by the evolutionary biologist Richard Dawkins in his 1976 book, The Selfish Gene. Dawkins writes, “I think that a new kind of replicator has recently emerged . . . It is still drifting clumsily about in its primeval soup, but already it is achieving evolutionary change at a rate which leaves the old gene panting far behind.” He goes on, “Examples of memes are tunes, ideas, catch-phrases, clothes fashions, ways of making pots or of building arches. Just as genes propagate themselves in the gene pool by leaping from body to body via sperms or eggs, so memes propagate themselves in the meme pool by leaping from brain to brain, via a process which, in the broad sense, can be called imitation.”

    One of the high priests of rationalism, the scientific method, and atheism, is also the father of the meme of ‘memes.’ However, like all memes or ideas, there can be no ownership in a traditional sense, only the entanglement that quantum physics reminds us characterizes our intra-actions.

    Of course, similar notions of how ideas move between us have been around in Western traditions for centuries. Plato was the first to fully articulate this through his Theory of Forms, which argues that non-physical forms – i.e. ideas – represent the perfect reality from which material reality is derived.

    Modern articulations of the Theory of Forms can be seen in Pierre Teilhard de Chardin’s idea of the Noosphere (the sphere of human thought) and Carl Jung’s Collective Unconscious, where structures of the unconscious are shared among beings of the same species. For Jung, the idea of the marauding cannibal would first be an archetype that manifests in the material world through the actions of those who channel or embody it.

    For those who prefer their science more empirical, the growing field of epigenetics provides some intellectual concrete. Epigenetics studies changes in organisms caused by modification of gene expression rather than any physical alteration of the gene itself. In other words, how traits vary from generation to generation is not solely a question of material biology but is partly determined by environmental and contextual factors that affected our ancestors and then are triggered within our genetic sequence through activation events in our life.

    The Wetiko Virus

    Quote We did not think of the great open plains, the beautiful rolling hills, and the winding streams with tangled growth as “wild.” Only to the White man was nature a “wilderness” and only to him was the land infested by “wild” animals and “savage” people. To us it was tame. Earth was bountiful and we were surrounded with the blessings of the Great Mystery. Not until the hairy man from the east came and with brutal frenzy heaped injustices upon us and the families we loved was it “wild” for us.
    Luther Standing Bear, Land of the Spotted Eagle
    Many spiritual traditions, including Buddhism, Sufism (the mystical branch of Islam), Taoism, Gnosticism, as well as many Indigenous cultures, have long understood the mind-based nature of creation. These worldviews have at their core a recognition of the power of thought-forms to determine the course of physical events.

    Various First Nation traditions of North America have specific and long established lore relating to cannibalism and a term for the thought-form that causes it: wetiko. We believe understanding this idea offers a powerful way of understanding the deepest roots of our current global polycrisis.

    Wetiko is an Algonquin word for a cannibalistic spirit that is driven by greed, excess, and selfish consumption (in Ojibwa it is windigo, wintiko in Powhatan). It deludes its host into believing that cannibalizing the life-force of others (others in the broad sense, including animals and other forms of Gaian life) is a logical and morally upright way to live.

    Wetiko short-circuits the individual’s ability to see itself as an enmeshed and interdependent part of a balanced environment and raises the self-serving ego to supremacy. It is this false separation of self from nature that makes this cannibalism, rather than simple murder. It allows – indeed commands – the infected entity to consume far more than it needs in a blind, murderous daze of self-aggrandizement. Author Paul Levy, in an attempt to find language accessible for Western audiences, describes it as ‘malignant egophrenia’ – the ego unchained from reason and limits, acting with the malevolent logic of the cancer cell. We will use the term wetiko as it is the original term, and reminds us of the wisdom of Indigenous cultures, for those who have the ears to hear.

    Wetiko can describe both the infection and the body infected; a person can be infected by wetiko or, in cases where the infection is very advanced, they can personify the disease: ‘a wetiko.’ This holds true for cultures and systems; all can be described as being wetiko if they routinely manifest these traits.

    In his now classic book Columbus and Other Cannibals, Native American scholar and historian Jack D. Forbes describes how there was a commonly-held belief among many Indigenous communities that the European colonialists were so chronically and uniformly infected with wetiko that it must be a defining characteristic of the culture from which they came. Examining the history of these cultures, Forbes laments, “Tragically, the history of the world for the past 2,000 years is, in great part, the story of the epidemiology of the wetiko disease.”7

    We would presumably all agree that the behavior of the European colonialists in North America can be described as cannibalistic. Their drive for conquest and material accumulation was a violent act of consumption. The engine of the invading culture sucked in the lives and resources of millions of humans and other animals, and turned them into wealth and power for themselves. The figures are still disputed, but it is safe to place the numbers of humans killed in the ‘founding of the New World’ at tens of millions. It was certainly one of the most brutal genocides in history. And the impact on more-than-human life was equally vast. These heinous acts were enacted with a moral certainty rationalizing the destruction in the name of ‘progress’ and ‘civilization.’

    This framing belies the extent of the wetiko infection in the invader culture. So blinded were they by self-referential ambition that they could not see other life as being as important as their own. They could not see past ideological blinders to the intrinsic value of life or the interdependent nature of all things, despite this being the dominant perspective of the Indigenous populations they encountered. Their ability to see and know in ways different from their own was, it seems, amputated.

    This is not an anti-European rant. This is the description of a disease whose vector was determined by deep patterns of history, including those that empowered Europeans in their drive for ‘global exploration’ as certain technologies emerged.

    The wetiko meme has almost certainly existed in individuals since the dawn of humanity. It is, after all, a sickness that lives through and is born from the human psyche. But the origin of wetiko cultures is more identifiable.

    Memes can spread at the speed of thought, but it requires generations to change the core characteristics of a culture. What we can say is that the fingerprints of wetiko-like beliefs can be traced at least as far back as the Neolithic revolution, when humans in the Fertile Crescent first learned to dominate their environment by what author Daniel Quinn calls “totalitarian agriculture” — i.e., settled agricultural practices that produce more food than is strictly needed for the population, and that see the destruction of any living entity that gets in the way of that (over-)production — be it other humans, ‘pests’ or the natural environment — as not only legitimate but moral.

    This early form of wetiko-logic received an amplifying power of indescribable magnitude with the arrival of Christianity. “Let us make mankind . . . rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky, over the livestock and all the wild animals, and over all the creatures that move along the ground,” said an authority no less than God in Genesis 1:26. After 8,000 years of totalitarian agriculture spreading slowly across the region, it is perhaps not surprising that the logic finds voice in the holy texts that emerged there. It was driven across Europe at the point of Roman swords in the two hundred years after Christ’s death. It is no coincidence that, in order for Christianity to become dominant, the existing pagan belief-system, with its understanding of humanity’s place within rather than above nature, had to be all but annihilated.8

    The point is that the epidemiology of wetiko has left clear indicators of its lineage. And although it cannot be pathologized along geographic or racial lines, the cultural strain we know today certainly has many of its deepest roots in Europe. It was, after all, European projects – from the Enlightenment to the Industrial Revolution, to colonialism, imperialism, and slavery – that developed the technology that opened up the channels that facilitated the spread of wetiko culture all around the world. In this way, we are all heirs and inheritors of wetiko.

    We are all host carriers of wetiko now.

    Wetiko Capitalism: Removing the Veils of Context

    Quote I don’t know who discovered water, but I can tell you it wasn’t a fish.
    Attributed to Marshall McCluhan
    When Western anthropologists first started to study wetiko, they believed it to be only a disease of the individual and a literal form of flesh-eating cannibalism.9 On both counts, as discussed, their understanding was, if not wrong, certainly limited. They did, however, accurately isolate two traits that are relevant for thinking about culture: (1) the initial act, even when driven by necessity, creates a residual, unnatural desire for more cannibalism; and (2) the host carrier, which they called the victim, ended up with an “icy heart” — i.e., their ability for empathy and compassion was amputated.

    The reader can probably sense from these two traits the wetiko nature of modern capitalism. Its insatiable hunger for finite resources; its disregard for the pain of groups and cultures it consumes; its belief in consumption as savior; its overriding obsession with its own material growth; and its viral spread across the surface of the planet. It is wholly accurate to describe neoliberal capitalism as the primary cannibalizing force of life on this planet. It is not the only truth — capitalism has also facilitated an explosion of human life and ingenuity — but when taken as a whole, capitalism is certainly eating through the life-force of this planet in service of its own growth.

    Of course, capitalism is a human conception and so we can also say that we are phenomenal hosts of the wetiko mind virus. To understand what makes us such, it is useful to consider a couple of the traits that guide the evolution of human cultures.

    We have decades of evidence from social science describing just what highly contextual beings we are. Almost all aspects of our behavior, including our moral judgments and limits, are significantly shaped in response to the cultural signifiers that surround us. The Good Samaritan studies, for example, show that even when people are primed with the idea of altruism, they will walk by others in need when they are in a rush or some other contextual variable changes.10 And the infamous Stanley Milgram experiments show how a large majority of people are capable of shocking another human to a point they know can cause death simply because an authority figure in a white lab coat insists they do so.

    We really are products of our environment, and so it should be taken as inevitable that those who live in a wetiko culture will manifest, to one degree or other, wetiko beliefs and behaviors.

    Looking through the broader contextual lens, we must also account for the self-perpetuating nature of complex systems. Any living network that becomes sufficiently complex will become self-organizing, and from that point on will demonstrate an instinct to survive. In practical terms, this means that it will distribute its resources to support behavior that best mimics its own logic and ensures its survival.

    In other words, any system that is sufficiently infected by wetiko logic will reward cannibalistic behavior. Or, in Jack Forbes’ evocative language, “Those who squirm upwards [in a wetiko system] are, or become, wetiko, and they only perpetuate the system of corruption or oppression. Thus the communist leaders in the Soviet Union under Stalin were at least as vicious, deceitful and exploitative as their czarist predecessors. They obtained ‘power’ without changing their wetiko culture.”

    This ensures that the essential logic of cultures spreads down through generations as well as across them. And it explains why power-elites self-organize resources to maintain a high degree of continuity in distributions of power, when those distributions efficiently serve their survival and growth. When this continuity is interrupted or broken, revolutions occur and the system is put under threat.

    However, as the above quote suggests, the disruption must happen at the right level. Merely trading one wetiko for another at the top of an otherwise unchanged wetiko infrastructure (as in the case of Stalin replacing the czars or, more contemporarily, Trump replacing Obama) is largely pointless. At best, it might result in the softening of the cruelest edges of a wetiko machine. At worse, it does nothing except distract us from seeing the true infection.

    The question, then, for anyone interested in excising the wetiko infection from a culture is, where does it live within the host body? In one respect, because it is a psychic phenomenon that lives in potentiality in all of us, it is non-local. But this, though ultimately important to understand, is not the whole truth. It is also true that there is a conceptual place where the most powerful wetiko logic is held, and that, at least in theory, makes it vulnerable.

    In the same way that a colony of bees will instinctively house its queen in the deepest chambers of the hive, so a complex adaptive system buries its most important operating logic furthest from the forces that can challenge them. This means two things: first, it means embedding the logic in the deep rules that govern the whole. Not just this national economy or that, this government or that, but the mother system — the global operating system. And second, it means making these rules feel as intractable and inevitable as possible.

    So what is this deep logic of the global operating system?

    It comes in two parts. First, there is the ultimate purpose, which we might call the Prime Directive, which is simply to increase capital, as the term capitalism would imply.

    We often dress this up in a narrative that says capital generation is not the end but the means, the engine of progress. This makes the idea of dethroning it feel dangerous and even contrary to common sense. But the truth is, we have created a system that artificially treats money as sacred. At this point in capitalism’s history, life is controlled by capital, more than it controls the forces of capital. If you need further proof, look no further than how we define and measure progress: GDP. More on that below.

    Then, there is the logic for how we, the living components of this system, should behave, which we would summarize with the following epithet:

    Selfishness is rational and rationality is everything; therefore selfishness is everything.

    This dictates that if we all prioritize ourselves and maximize our own material wealth, an invisible hand (ah, what a seductive meme!) will create an equilibrium state and life everywhere will be made better. We are pitted against each other in a form of distributed fascism where we cocoon ourselves in the immediate problems of our own circumstances and consume what we can. We then couch this behavior in the benign language of family matters, national interests, job creation, GDP growth, and other upstanding endeavors.

    Put these two parts of the puzzle together and it’s easy to see why the banker who generates excess capital receives vast rewards and is labelled productive and successful, almost regardless of the damage s/he causes. Those who are less successful at producing excess capital, meanwhile, are rewarded far less, regardless of the life-affirming good they may be doing. Nurses, mothers, teachers, journalists, activists, scientists — all receive far less reward because they are less efficient at obeying the Prime Directive and may even be countermanding the operating principle of self-interest. And as for those who are actually poor — well, they are effortlessly labelled not just as practical but also moral failures.

    This capital expansion infection is so far advanced precisely because the system requires exponential capital growth. The World Bank tells us that we have to grow the global economy by at least 3 percent per year to avoid recession.15 Let’s think about what this means. Global GDP in 2014 (the last full year of data) was roughly USD $78 trillion.16 We grew that pie by 2.4% in 2015, which resulted in the commodification and subsequent consumption of roughly another $2 trillion in human labor and natural resources. That’s roughly the size of the entire global economy in 1970. It took us from the dawn of civilization to 1970 to reach $2 trillion in global GDP, and now we need that just in the differential so the entire house of cards doesn’t crumble. In order to achieve this rate of growth year-on-year, we are destroying our planet, ensuring mass species extinction, and displacing millions of our brothers and sisters (who we commonly refer to as “poor people”) from around the world.

    So when people tell us that the market knows best, or technology will save us, or philanthrocapitalism will redistribute opportunities (pace Bill Gates), we have to understand that all of these seemingly common sense truisms are embedded in a broader operating system, a wetikonomy. And the more they are presented as unchangeable, the more often we’re told, “there is no alternative,” the more we should question. There is actually a beautiful irony in the fact that, when we know what we’re up against, such statements are our signposts for where to look to create change.

    It is not that we are against markets, technology, or philanthropy — they can all be wonderful, in the right context — but we are against how they are being used as alibis to excuse the insanity of the wetiko paradigm that they are inseparable from. We are reminded of Jack Forbes’ heavy words; “It is not logical to allow the wetikos to carry out their evil acts and then to accept their assessment of the nature of human life. For after all, the wetiko possess a bias created by their own evil lives, by their own amoral or immoral behavior. And too, if I am correct, they were, and are, also insane.”

    Seeing Wetiko: Antidote Logic

    Quote Launch your meme boldly and see if it will replicate — just like genes replicate, and infect, and move into the organism of society. And, believing as I do, that society operates on a kind of biological economy, then I believe these memes are the key to societal evolution. But unless the memes are released to play the game, there is no progress.
    Terrence McKenna, Memes, Drugs and Community

    You might just be a black Bill Gates in the making.
    Beyoncé, Formation
    A key lesson of meme theory is that when we are conscious of the memetic viruses we are less likely to adhere to them blindly. Conscious awareness is like sunlight through the cracks of a window.

    Thus, one of the starting points for healing is the simple act of seeing wetiko in ourselves, in others, and in our cultural infrastructure. And once we see, we can name, which is critical because words and language are a central battleground. To quote McKenna again: “The world is not made of quarks, electromagnetic wave packets, or the thoughts of God. The world is made of language. Earth is a place where language has literally become alive. Language has invested matter; it is replicating and defining and building itself. And it is in us.”

    His last line is critical for exploring our own agency in the replication of wetiko. We are all entangled in the unfolding of reality that is happening both to and through us. In place of traditional certainties and linear cause-and-effect logic, we can recast ourselves “as spontaneously responsive, moving, embodied living beings — within a reality of continuously intermingling, flowing lines or strands of unfolding, agential activity, in which nothing (no thing) exists in separation from anything else, a reality within which we are immersed both as participant agencies and to which we also owe significant aspects of our own natures.”

    If wetiko exists, it is because it exists within us. It is also entangled with the broader superstructure, relationships, and choice architecture that we are confronted with within a neoliberal system on the brink of collapse.

    Forbes reminds us that we cannot fight wetiko in any traditional sense: “One of the tragic characteristics of the wetiko psychosis is that it spreads partly by resistance to it. That is, those who try to fight wetiko sometimes, in order to survive, adopt wetiko values. Thus, when they win, they lose.” As such, reform-based initiatives, from the sharing economy to micro-lending, have succumbed to the co-optation and retaliation of wetiko capitalism.

    However, once we are in the mode of seeing wetiko, we can hack the cultural systems that perpetuate its logic. It is not difficult to figure out where to start. Following the money usually leads us to the core pillars of wetiko machinery. Those of us that are within these structures, from the corporate media to philanthropy to banking to the UN, have access to the heart of the wetiko monster. It is up to you what you will do with that privilege.

    For those of us on the outside, we can organize our lives in radically new ways to undermine wetiko structures. For example, the simple act of gifting undermines the neoliberal logic of commodification and extraction. Using alternative currencies undermines the debt–based money system. De-schooling and alternative education models can help decolonize and de-wetikoize the mind. Helping to create alternative communities outside the capitalist system supports the infrastructure for transition. And direct activism such as debt resistance can weaken the wetiko virus, if done with the right intention and state of consciousness.

    By contracting new relationships with others, with Nature, and with ourselves, we can build a new complex of entanglements and thought-forms that are fused with post-wetiko, post-capitalist values.

    We have to simultaneously go within ourselves and the deep recesses of our own psyches while changing the structure of the system around us. Holding a structural perspective and an unapologetic critique of modern capitalism — i.e. holding a constellational worldview that sees all oppression as connected — serves our ability to see and live the alternatives.

    Plato believed that ideas are the “eyes of the soul.” Now that the veils obscuring wetiko are starting to be lifted, let us give birth to, and become, living antigens, embracing the polyculture of ideas that are challenging the monoculture of wetiko capitalism. Let us be pollinators of new memetic hives built on altruism, empathy, inter-connectedness, reverence, communality, and solidarity, defying the subject-object dualities of Cartesian/Newtonian/Enlightenment logic. Let us reclaim our birthright as sovereign entities, free of deluded beliefs in market systems, invisible hands, righteous greed, chosen ones, branded paraphernalia, techno-utopianism and even the self-salvation of the New Age. Let us dance with thought-forms through a deeper understanding of ethics, knowing, and being,23 and the intimate awareness that our individual minds and bodies are a part of the collective battleground for the soul of humanity, and indeed, life on this planet. And let us re-embrace the ancient futures of our Indigenous ancestors that represent the only continuous line of living in symbiosis with Mother Nature. The dissolution of wetiko will be as much about remembering as it will be about creation.

    Endnotes and references on origin page.
    Last edited by Mark/Rahkyt; 3rd March 2020 at 15:41. Reason: add discussion

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  29. Link to Post #475
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    Default Re: Racism

    Quote Posted by Agape (here)
    I am asking myself recently if that sting in humans is some kind of residual brain chemical that we don’t need that acts like poison, a toxin, translates as dangerous sarcasm and dirty humor where we give love and wisdom otherwise.
    I posted a pdf in post 460, that discussed some of the physiological precursors that lead to this form of differentiation between people and, as one factor in that global inequity equation, our very way of thinking has a lot to do with it in ways I'd previously not considered. Just the sub-conscious "act" of differentiating between the front and back of our bodies, the top and bottom, create dichotomies of difference that we then project from our bodies and minds into our considerations of other individuals and sub-groups in our tribe, to considerations of real others, those who exist outside of our known boundaries. All of the polarities that we take for granted then accrue, black/white, good/bad, up/down, etc. It is a very personal process that starts at a very young age and that is, perhaps, epigenetic in nature at this point with some aspects being taught, culturally, as far as the choice of objects to elevate versus those to denigrate.

    Very interesting considerations and pertinent to many aspects of our individuated and group cultural creation.

    Quote Posted by Agape (here)
    I’d love to discover why is this happening *really* as all the *issue* makes no sense otherwise and there has to be a clue to human negativity other than “being different”, not looking good enough to somebody, not being the right “mating model” and so forth.
    The post above, 474, takes it to a level of consideration and discussion that may provide some illumination as far as it not "making sense", as well as clarifying the lesser considerations of "mating model" and so forth. It is, at least, a factor in many of our designations insofar as we are each "infected" with culturally appropriated norms of relating and of beauty that are diffused throughout a society and that everyone is familiar with, even if it is not discussed openly or directly. As these issues of race and ethnicity have not been equitably accounted for, across time and space.

    Quote Posted by Agape (here)
    There’s so much brain power behind every little face, so why being bastards to each other, commenting on whether ya look more like Milky Way or Mars Bar.

    Some people should stay contained in kindergartens forever and discuss their appearances, forever.
    I agree without qualification. LOL

    I wish I could stay on higher ideals and spiritualized discussion. I would love to participate more in those aspects of Project Avalon but my time and attention are very concentrated these days and I feel it is important that this topic be aired out in the Alternative Community (AltCom). I've been grounded heavily by recent events in my life so my multidimensional perspective has, of necessity, been drawn back into these considerations, which I spent the first 40 years of my life considering and gaining a very extensive education on through personal experience and also academia. I am familiar with all sides of the issue and seek only to air them and find the "higher way" through it, as balance is desperately needed in these times.

    Maybe at some point this conversation and thread will wind down, my material concerns will draw back and I'll be able to go back up to the "mountaintop" and meditate to my soul's content and never have to talk about them ever again.

    I'd like that.

    Be blessed.

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    Default Re: Racism

    Mark I enjoyed reading the lengthy piece on Wetiko as I strongly agree with the concept and believe it is key to your question to me of race obsession origin. It actually forms part of my response that I will get back to you on. Along with Memes being the other fit, and part of our evolutionary solution. Pleasant synchronicity for me reading your contributions today. Thank you.

    I should get time over the next week to put it together and post.

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    Default Re: Racism

    Sharing an article by a gentleman named "Johnny Reb", which goes a long way in describing the practical aspect of the Wetiko phenomenon and how racism is a part of it, to the extent that it is exploitative of human and other natural capital resources, resulting in the monetization of souls and collective units of consciousness, animals and plants, on a mass scale. Our economic system obviously reflects this. The societal institutionalization of racism and classism also reflect this. This historical treaties uses numerous good examples of individuals and groups/classes to illustrate the nature of Wetiko as it occurs and the cultural and class expression that can be determined clearly just by observation of history as well as current events.

    We've determined in this discussion thus far that institutionalized behavior modification directs people in their adoption of cultural mores, people do what people do, as they are taught, which has been, in turn, a structure built upon inherent physical and psychological mechanisms that support dichotimization and polarity thinking. The inclusion of Weticonomics into this structure shows us how individuals who exemplify this phenomena consciously support and further these mind control methodologies to appeal to people's baser instincts and propensity to "follow the herd" and "not stick out" by standing up for themselves and others.

    It becomes more difficult to appeal to higher forms of justice when it turns you against your family, friends and neighbors and even your own fear and trauma programming as well as your base survival instincts.

    Christopher Columbus the Wétiko

    To the Cree, and most Native North Americans, greed was a serious psychological malfunction. The Cree called it Wétiko.

    Native American philosopher Jack Forbes explains that the overriding characteristic of a wétiko, a Cree word literally meaning “cannibal,” is “that he consumes other human beings for profit, that is, he is a cannibal” ... (from Columbus and other Cannibals, a book, in addition to American Holocaust by David Stannard, A Little Matter of Genocide by Ward Churchill and Native American History by Judith Nies, that ought to be required reading by every high school student)

    By Johnny Reb

    Ultimately, humility is the basis for democracy, just as arrogance is the basis for authoritarianism - Jack D Forbes

    This culture is based on exploitation, domination, theft and murder…and the perceived right of the powerful to take whatever resources they want… it’s a culture that is killing the planet - Derrick Jensen

    Kill every buffalo you can, for every buffalo dead is an Indian gone -Colonel R. I. Dodge, Fort McPherson, 1867

    Are we “civilized”?

    Mohandas Ghandi was once asked what he thought of Western Civilization. His response was “It would be a good idea.” As the latest manifestation of out-of-control exploitive capitalism has been discharged onto the world and even more rapidly ravages and wreaks havoc on the planet and which has now led to the demolition of the global economy, who can argue with that?

    Ghandi’s terse response prompts us to ask “what exactly is civilization anyway?” It certainly has precious little to do with “civility” as any interchange with our dysfunctional culture of narcissism and greed quickly demonstrates. Dictionary definitions I have not found particularly helpful because they’re generally mired in self-serving ethnocentric bias. The OED is not particularly helpful, defining it as “a developed or advanced state of human society,” prompting one to ask what is meant by “developed” or “advanced.”

    Religions, ideologies, doctrinaire world views and the need for certainty are invariably the refuge of the fearful, those who fear change, ambiguity and the loss of their privileged position within society. That’s why the modern monolithic nation state is founded on the written word, perhaps an offshoot of the ingrained notion of an unchanging Biblical literalism. It has become the bludgeon that provides for contraction of meaning and a singular mythology, loyalty, patriotism and devotion, the framing of discourse, entitlement and the affirmation of power for those who already have it.

    This conception of a nation state was antithetical to the Native North American anarchistic world view. Castenada, a Franciscan priest who accompanied Coronado’s expedition, described the Hopis of New Mexico as living in “complete equality, neither exercising authority nor demanding obedience.” Castenada’s remark was a not uncommon observation by white Christian invaders of socialistic libertarian Native North American societies. Native peoples in North America believed that humans are merely a constituent of the natural world, not a chosen species instructed to master and exploit it with impunity. They had no conception of private property, believing that the world and its bounty was granted to all by their “Creator” and that no group or individual had the right to own any part of it. To the North American Indians, land had a very different meaning – culturally, economically and spiritually. “Sell a country!” Tecumseh shouted at a meeting of the representatives of the Northwest Territory in 1810. “Why not sell the air, the clouds, the rivers and the great sea as well as the entire earth?” Did not the Great Spirit make them all for the use of his children?”

    The Indians in California who had spent decades resisting or evading the Spanish missionaries and conquistadors were finally reduced to near total extermination by the American gold miners who overran their hunting grounds, villages and burial sites, murdered and scalped for bounties, kidnapped Indian women to serve as prostitutes and Indian children as slaves. Historian Alan Josephy called the treatment of California Indians “as close to genocide as any tribal people had faced, or would face, on the North American continent.”By the 1880’s 30 million buffalo had been killed merely for their hides and less than one thousand remained. In the Texas legislature General Sheridan, sounding like Heinrich Himmler, declared “for the sake of everlasting peace, let them kill, skin and sell until the buffalo are exterminated”, since it would do more to settle the “Indian problem” than anything else by starving them out. Also by that time, the Eastern Indians in the United States had been moved to substandard land on reservations on land that was deemed valueless to the Christian White Man at the time. The reservations were no better than glorified concentration camps and Indians died in the thousands from the inability to sustain themselves, corruption of Indian agents, neglect and disease. Segregated within reservations, they were excluded from the American economy and political system. They could not vote, had no elected representatives, had no voice in the political process and were forced into a complex web of treaties that had no legal status for them. Of the more than 400 treaties signed with the US government, many of which they did not understand, not a single one was honored. When the greedy capitalists discovered gold, oil and other valuable minerals on their originally considered useless land, they were ruthlessly exploited once again. It continues to this day.

    *Contrary to Hollywood mythology, scalping was introduced and originally practiced by white Christian Europeans. In California it was declared “open season” on any Native American who resisted the intrusion of the greedy gold miners.

    Following the arrival of the brutal barbarian Columbus, they Native Americans were subjected to five centuries of racism, slavery, genocide and theft of their homelands. It’s ironic that Native Americans were referred to as “savages” by their European Christian invaders despite the fact they had a far superior conception of community, egalitarianism, family, justice and fair play than the greedy “enlightened” Christian white men who lied, pillaged, and murdered their way to total dominance, enslavement and subjugation of indigenous peoples throughout the world. Joseph Brant the great Mohawk Six Nations leader repeatedly argued for these lofty principles when he so eloquently and ironically said, “In the government you call civilized, the happiness of the people is constantly sacrificed to the splendor of empires. Hence your codes of criminal and civil laws have their origin; hence your dungeons and prisons. I will not enlarge on an idea so singular in civilized life. Among us we have no prisons.” (John Ralston Saul, A Fair Country, p. 28)

    Unlike Christian Europeans and their Biblical fixations of certainty, Native peoples in North America had no written laws or doctrinaire religious codes, only an ongoing dialogue in which all verbal agreements were never calcified or immutable, but open-ended, often ambiguous and subject to change. As long as you continued the dialogue, violence as a solution to human conflict could be averted. Native Americans did not believe in inflicting the Old Testament idea of punishment, especially on their children, and cared for those who could not look after themselves. Their sense of the common good would not permit anyone in the tribe to wander homeless in the uncaring wilderness of a failed civilization. In our so-called “advanced” society of the 21st Century the majority of food bank users have jobs, forty to 60% of homeless shelter residents have jobs and over an eight month period in 2007, homeless shelters in metropolitan Vancouver had to turn a way 40,000 homeless people for lack of beds. Is this the best we can do? In my view it’s a flagrant failure of what any civilized society ought to be.

    Unlike the depraved Christian notion of “original sin” in the Garden of Eden, First Nations people have never been compelled to suffer eternal torment and a daunting sense of guilt by being expelled from their land and natural environment by a vengeful ego driven Deity. They were never separated from their land by an oppressive mythology so it was neither perceived as a lost paradise nor an enemy.

    Someone once asked Rick Santorum, a Christian fundamentalist and one of the most powerful people in the US Senate during the George W Bush administration why he consistently implements policies that are unsustainable and harmful to the natural environment. He replied that the natural world is inconsequential to God’s divine plan, explaining that the impending rapture and return of Jesus would solve all of mankind’s problems, including the devastation to the environment. “Nowhere in the Bible does it say that America will be here one hundred years from now.” It’s disturbing to realize that former president George W Bush* and 178 members of the United States Senate are also Christian fundamentalists who think like Santorum or are at the very least allied with the Christian right. These are the unthinking simpletons that Chris Hedges refers to in his book American Fascists: The Christian Right and the War on America.

    *Bush stated publically that his reasons for invading Afghanistan and Iraq were that “God told me to strike at al Qaida and I struck them, and then instructed me to strike at Saddam, which I did.” Another disturbing fact: in a 1996 national poll it was revealed that more than 40% of Americans believe the world in its present form will end in the battle of Armageddon in Israel between Jesus and the anti-Christ. Presumably the opening bout will be between the Easter Bunny and the Tooth Fairy.

    The real savages

    History is the polemics of the powerful – William F Buckley

    History is very selective, written by the holders of power who select those events in the narrative that legitimize the status with them perched at the pinnacle of the socio-economic order. Albeit very slowly, this has been recently changing with the publication of books such as Howard Zinn’s ground breaking A Peoples History of the United States and James Loewen’s Lies My Teacher Told Me. For centuries the traditional historical narratives have comprised the mythology of our culture – creating myths that are constantly in a state of flux. The idea for a chronology of Native American history grew out of the paradigm shift that resulted from the 500 year centenary celebration of Columbus's arrival in the western hemisphere in 1492. Like many people expecting a lively celebration of Columbus's heroism, courage, and mythic vision, the imagination of some was captured instead by the "view from the shore" that was later chronicled not only by the books by Loewen and Zinn, but David Stannard’s American Holocaust and Ward Churchill’s A Little Matter of Genocide. The point of view presented by indigenous peoples was one of great native cultural and societal contributions and great European savagery and injustice. Their perspective changed the narrative of time and challenged the conventional Hollywood myths of Native Americans.

    The “discovery” of America is a distortion of language, a misnomer. It was at the very least an invasion, not a discovery, and the pattern of exploitation and murder was established right from the beginning. Once he arrived in the West Indies, Columbus immediately began herding the native Arawaks – “the best people under the sun, with neither ill-will nor treachery” – to take back to Spain to sell in the slave market. Those remaining were worked to death in the gold mines with a brutality so excessive that a priest who accompanied Columbus called it “fierce and unnatural cruelty.” Spanish violence and cruelty was incomprehensible to the natives: "[The Spaniards] made bets as to who would slit a man in two, or cut off his head at one blow; or they opened up his bowels. They tore the babies from their mothers' breast by their feet, and dashed their heads against the rocks. . . They spitted the bod­ies of other babes, together with their mothers and all who were before them, on their swords ... [They hanged Indians] by thirteen's, in honor and reverence for our Re­deemer and the twelve Apostles, they put wood underneath and, with fire, they burned the Indians alive. ... I saw all the above things . . . All these did my own eyes witness," wrote Fray Bartolome de Las Casas, the Spanish priest who came to the New World for land and ended by writing the famous Historia de las Indias, a his­tory of the land Columbus mistakenly called India.

    In graphical contradiction to centuries of national Columbus holidays and main­stream history texts, indigenous peoples throughout the hemisphere launched demonstrations to publicize the historical reality of the Arawak Indians and Columbus's genocidal search for gold. At the time Columbus landed on the island he called Hispaniola in 1492 there were an estimated 30 million people in Mexico and the Caribbean Islands (Columbus's brother counted over one million male inhabitants in what we now call the Dominican Republic in the census he conducted to deter­mine how many adult males should be bringing in gold for tribute) and another estimated 50 million in the U.S., Canada, and South America, many of whom lived in highly complex cultures with sophisticated knowledge of astronomy, agriculture, metalworking, weaving, geography and measurement of time.*

    *Population figures have been greatly revised over the past 20 years. Although all sites were not simultaneously occupied, population estimates at the time of Columbus range from 7 to 45 million people in South America; 7 to 30 million people in Mexico and the Caribbean islands; and one to 18 million people in the U.S. and Canada. Some revised estimates go as high as 110 million people in the entire western hemisphere. The variations are based on the interpretation of the numbers of settlements; the duration of settlements, the areas of land cultivated multiplied by the numbers of people they might have supported. I have used the more conservative of the revised estimates. About the only fact everyone agrees on is that there were far more people living in the Americas than was formerly be­lieved or that our history books have told us.

    Following the lead of his marauding Spanish Christian predecessor Christopher Columbus, the conquistador Hernando Cortés, shortly before razing Tenochtitlan (the present location of Mexico City) to the ground and slaughtering or enslaving most of its inhabitants, remarked that it was the most beautiful city he had ever seen. This contaminated conception of civilization has been commonly argued by so-called enlightened Christian Europeans throughout the world for the past five centuries. Captain John Chester wrote that the native Indians are to “gain the knowledge of our faith,” while, consistent with Biblical holy writ, Europeans would harvest “such riches the country hath.” It was similarly and universally argued by pious slave owners in the Nineteenth Century as philosopher George Fitzhugh stated that “slavery educates, refines and moralizes the masses by bringing them into continual intercourse with masters of superior minds, information and morality.” It’s just as commonly expressed today in the free market dogmas of unfettered capitalism with the relentless Western images of MacDonald’s, Coca-Cola and Jesus to the rest of the world, justifying dispossession of the poor in the Third World, forcing them into wage slavery and permanent penurious feudalism. With the recent calamitous meltdown of the global economy, the rest of the world appears to be destined to the same fate.

    For example, how can one possibly make the case that the people of Africa have benefited from colonialism and their “economic interaction” with Western Europeans and Americans when an estimated 100 million died from the slave trade, while even many more were and continue to be impoverished and dispossessed? The same can be said for Aboriginal, Native Indians in America, the people of pre-colonial India and other hapless victims of the greedy ravages of capitalism throughout recent history. And nothing much has really changed since the Spanish conquistadors, as the recent invasion of Iraq and Afghanistan by the United States imperialist empire clearly reveals. Our solution to those native people that didn’t like what was being done to them was simple: death.

    Putting it within an historical context, Lewis Mumford described the primary features of a “civilization”, constant in varying proportions throughout history, as “the centralization of political power, the separation of classes, the mechanization of production, the magnification of military power, the economic exploitation of the weak and the universal introduction of slavery and forced labor for both industrial and military purposes.” The anthropologist/philosopher Stanley Diamond put it more succinctly, when he proclaimed that “Civilization originates in conquest abroad and repression at home.”

    Were Columbus and his fellow Christian European cohorts and successors for the next five hundred years simply greedy sociopathic sub-humans who would tolerate mass exploitation, racism, theft, brutality, sadism and genocide? Native American historian Jack D Forbes in his book Columbus and other Cannibals: The Wétiko Disease of Exploitation, Imperialism, and Terrorism states that the overriding characteristic of a wétiko, a Cree word literally meaning “cannibal,” is “that he ‘consumes’ other human beings for profit, that is, he is a cannibal”. By cannibalism Forbes does not necessarily mean eating the flesh of another human, but defines the concept in an extended metaphor as a form of spiritual dysfunction and psychopathic behavior, even insanity, in which in all its multifarious ways greedy predatory men have exploited and murdered and destroyed the cultures (most often indigenous peoples) of other humans deemed “savages” via war, colonialism and imperialism. In his own words Forbes informs us that “wétiko is a Cree term (windigo in Ojibway, wintiko in Powhatan) which refers to a cannibal or, more specifically, an evil person or spirit who terrorizes other creatures by means of terrible acts…the consuming the life of another for private purpose or profit.” He tells us that for the wétiko, “Brutality knows no boundaries. Greed knows no limits. Perversion knows no borders. . . . These characteristics all push towards an extreme, always moving forward once the initial infection sets in. . . . This is the disease of the consuming of other creatures’ lives and possessions.” Forbes would extend this perverse behavior to those who would transform a pristine old growth forest into slabs and two-by-fours or dam a salmon filled river and flood a beautiful valley for hydro-electric power.

    The truth is evidently plain and simple: Columbus, Cortez, Pizarro, all the monarchs and patriarchs, the pope, and all those pious Christian Europeans who participated in the invasion and colonization and subsequent pillage, theft and slaughter of native peoples not just in the Americas, but throughout the world, suffered from the wétiko mind virus.

    In his fascinating novel Three Day Road, the Native Canadian author and Literature Professor Joseph Boyden explains wétiko through one of his characters in the novel. He reveals it as a terrifying 'windigofication' of the main character's brother, Elijah. Xavier and Elijah enroll in World War I as Native Canadian Cree snipers when Elijah starts to revel in acts of barbarity (ironically, caused by his attempts to conform to white stereotypes about "Indian savages"), to the extent that Xavier deems it necessary to kill him in the novel's climactic ending.

    Jack D Forbes tells us that throughout history wétikos have been primarily conservative elites, members of the educated and so-called civilized classes such as popes, monarchs, land barons and other rulers of totalitarian and hierarchical social orders. They are also the same powerful elites who have provided us with their own distorted propagandized version of history, as history as always been told by those who wield power and control, and like credulous children, we have believed it. Power, like property, the land, water (and not inconceivably, eventually the air we breathe) has become privatized and concentrated. They are the same people who today might listen to Mozart while reading Aristotle’s Ethics in the comfort of their grandiose mansions as they contemplate the bombing of primarily non-Christian brown people in Third World countries, especially those with huge oil reserves. Today they are by and large highly educated, the graduates of ivy-league universities, theological seminaries and military schools and other elite Western universities. They claim to have refinement, enlightenment and wisdom despite the fact they have provided us with arguably the most power hungry, exploitive and brutal era in human history where there is little chance for the survival of any charitable non-aggressive person other than as a lackey or wage slave.

    Cultural theorist Tzvetan Todorov, in his study of Columbus, tells us that “the sixteenth century perpetrated the greatest genocide in human history…in 1500 the world population is approximately 400 million, of whom 80 million inhabited the Americas. “ Of the estimated 8 million that inhabited the islands in the Caribbean such as Haiti (where Columbus first landed) and Cuba, by the middle of the sixteenth century, out of these 8 million, none remained. After this genocidal miscalculation by Columbus his successors were forced to import millions of slaves from Africa, of whom very few survived either the voyage or subsequent enslavement. This orgy of racism, slavery and genocide by Western Christian Europeans continued unabated for another 450 years.

    In Columbus and other Cannibals, Jack Forbes writes:

    It is quite clear that in modern times we have witnessed the wide­spread brutalization of human beings. The history of Europe in the last 1,500 years and the history of European imperialism in Africa, Asia and the Americas reveal atrocities of almost unimaginable proportions. The brutality of the "religious" wars in Europe, the unrelenting exploitation of Original Americans, the sacrifice of tens of millions of Africans and First Americans in order to obtain slaves or peons, the genocidal policies of the English toward the Irish, of Europeans generally towards Native People, of the Nazis toward Jews, Slavs and Gypsies, represent only a few examples of large-scale cruelty, aggression and exploitation almost beyond belief.

    Various terms, such as "wild," "savage" and "barbarian" have been used frequently to refer to violent, crude, brutal, cruel, destructive and aggressive behavior. Ironically, such terms have often been used by European writers to refer to non-white, non-Christian and non-European peoples whose customs were different and were therefore (because of that element of difference) called "wild" or "savage." The irony stems from the fact that few, if any, societies on the face of the earth have ever been as avaricious, cruel, violent and aggressive as have certain European Christian populations. Luther Standing Bear, a Native American thinker, summarized the more correct state of affairs in the following reveal­ing passage:

    We did not think of the great open plains, the beauti­ful rolling hills, and the winding streams with tangled growth as "wild." Only to the White man was nature a "wilderness" and only to him was the land infested by "wild" animals and "savage" people. To us it was tame. Earth was bountiful and we were surrounded with the blessings of the Great Mystery. Not until the hairy man from the east came and with brutal frenzy heaped injustices upon us and the families we loved was it "wild" for us. When the very animals of the forest began fleeing; from his approach, then it was that for us the "wild west" began. (Luther Standing Bear, Land of the Spotted Eagle, xxvii) pp. 22-23

    Wétiko continued unabated throughout the 20th century and into the 21st , the United States having taken over the role from the decadence and brutality of the former British Empire and other Western European nations, who have been the primary torch bearers of elitist exploitation, imperialism and genocidal attacks on indigenous peoples throughout the past five centuries. Forbes again:

    Thus, the slaver who forces blacks or Indians to lose their lives in the slave trade or who drains away their lives in a slave system is a cannibal. He may "eat" other people immediately (as in the deaths of tens of millions of blacks in the process of enslavement or shipment) or he may "eat" their flesh gradually over a period of years.

    Thus, the wealthy capitalist exploiter "eats" the flesh of oppressed workers and ravages his natural environment, the wealthy matron "eats" the lives of her servants, the imperialist "eats" the flesh of the conquered, and so on. Nazism, for example, may be described as a German form of cannibalism designed to consume Jews, Gypsies, Poles and other Slavs in order to fatten Germans. Anglo-American imperialism is a form of cannibalism designed to "eat" Indians and also to consume the Native people's land and resources (a process which continues in Central America and elsewhere today). Forbes summarizes:

    It should be understood that wetikos do not eat other humans only in a symbolic sense. The deaths of tens of millions of Jews, Slavs, etc., at the hands of the Nazis, the deaths of tens of millions of blacks in slavery days, the deaths of up to 30 million or more Indians in the 1500s, the terribly short life spans of Mexican Indian farm workers in the US, and of Native Americans generally today, the high death rates in the early industrial centers among factory workers, and so on, all clearly attest to the fact that the wealthy and exploitative literally consume the lives of those that they exploit.

    That, I would affirm, is truly and literally cannibalism and it is cannibalism accompanied by no spiritually meaningful ceremony or ritual. It is simply raw consumption for profit, carried out often in an ugly and brutal manner. There is no respect for a peon whose life is being eaten. No ceremony. No mystical communication - only self-serving consumption.

    Who is Jack D Forbes?

    Professor Jack D Forbes, former chair of Native American Studies and professor of anthropology at the University of California, Davis, was born in Long Beach but has lived in Berkeley and Davis since 1967. He attended the University of Southern California, earning A.B., M.A. and Ph.D. degrees, the latter in history with a minor in North American ethnology. Forbes worked his way through college, serving on the fire crew of the Lassen National Forest and driving trucks for Meadow Gold Dairies. In 1960 he joined the faculty at California State University, Northridge. There he received a Guggenheim Fellowship and then in 1964 moved north to the University of Nevada, Reno.

    In 1967 he assumed the post of Research Program Director at the Far West Laboratory for Educational Research and Development in Berkeley. He then became a professor at U.C. Davis in 1969. In 1981-82 he was named a Fulbright Visiting Professor at the University of Warwick, England, and in 1983-84 he was honored with the Tinbergen Chair at the Erasmus University of Rotterdam. In 1986-87 he served as a Visiting Scholar at the Institute of Social Anthropology, Oxford University, England.

    Of Powhatan, Delaware and non-Indian background, Professor Forbes became very active in Native American affairs very early, organizing the Native American Movement in 1961. In 1960 he formed the American Indian College Committee with Navajo artist Carl Gorman and others to create proposals for an Indian university. At Cal State Northridge he developed a proposal for an American Indian Studies program in 1960, ten years ahead of its time. In 1967 he was a co-founder of the California Indian Education Association and in 1971 of D-Q University, the Indian college near Davis. From 1968 through 1969 Forbes was a co-organizer of United Native Americans in the Bay Area and served as editor of Warpath. During the same period and later he served as editor of the Powhatan newspapers Tsen-Akamak and Attam-Akamik.

    Forbes' published writings include twelve books, over twenty short books and monographs, ninety-five scholarly articles, over one hundred popular articles, numerous short stories, and poems. His first book, Apache, Navaho and Spaniard, remains in print after thirty-two years. Columbus and Other Cannibals is the current culmination of Forbes' thinking about the ultimate social causes of white Christian aggression and exploitation and about Native American philosophical beliefs and cultural norms. His earliest version of the book was sketched out in 1976 and published in a preliminary version in 1978.

    Although focusing upon tragic issues of violence, exploitation, terrorism, slavery, genocide and violence, Forbes does not offer only a negative view of human evolution. He goes beyond a condemnation of aggression to undertake an analysis of how colonialism, imperialism and doctrinaire socio-economic systems of hierarchy systematically alter and brutalize individuals. Most importantly, he offers cultural options based upon traditional Native American philosophy and antidotes to the disease of cannibalism. Here’s Forbes:

    Modern capitalism has been a major source of negative appraisals of human life, but dogmatic communism, Calvinistic and Lutheran Protestantism, Roman Catholicism and many other European or Euro-Mediterranean systems of thought have also viewed humans in a negative way, to one degree or another. Another powerful source of such thinking is (or has been) authoritarian political agencies and hierarchical social systems (ranging from Fascism and Nazism to the ancient cult of empire to the militaristic-right wing police officer syndrome).

    And, of course, if one only looks at European history or the history of Europeans in Africa, Asia and the Americas one might indeed ' become persuaded that the Machiavellians and wetikos are correct in their judgments, European history is replete with almost continuous examples of human depravity - epoch after epoch of imperialistic wars, frequent examples of the systematic murdering of followers of different religions or members of different ethnic groups, almost continuous campaigns to liquidate or forcibly assimilate this or that nationality, rigid systems of class exploitation, the brutal subjection of peasants, slaves and workers and, finally, literally thousands of examples of lying, deceit, poisoning, duplicity, torture and sadism, ranging from the murders by Byzantine monarchs to the atrocities of the Catholic inquisition to the Italian Renaissance assassinators to the ruthless Bismarks to the individually depraved Marquis de Sade types.

    Many people have labeled Hitler a madman. But what they fail to see is that Hitler's behavior was not really different from that of numerous Popes who authorized crusades against heretics, or of Ferdinand of Spain, who tortured and murdered thousands of ex-Jews and caused the murder of millions of Americans, or of Charlemagne, who systematically slaughtered the Saxons, or of many English kings who caused the death and exploitation of thousands of Irishmen, Scots, Americans and others. What makes Mussolini different from Julius Caesar or Alexander the Great? Only that he was not so successful and that he is closer to us in time.

    Winston Churchill, the supposed antithesis of Hitler, was really a product of the same kind of thinking. Churchill was an avowed imperialist, a man very unwilling to end British rule over India, the African colonies and so on. True, Churchill did not kill as many people as Hitler, but then again, he was defending an already estab­lished empire, not trying to carve out a new one. The latter process is apt to be much more openly violent and repulsive to those who view such things from a distance.

    It is very sad, but the "heroes" of European historiography, the heroes of the history textbooks, are usually imperialists, butchers, founders of authoritarian regimes, exploiters of the poor, liars, cheats and torturers. What that means is that the wetiko disease has so cor­rupted European thinking (at least of the ruling groups) that wetiko behavior and wetiko goals are regarded as the very fabric of European evolution. Thus, those who resist wetiko values and imperialism and exploitation specifically, such as the Leveler rebels in England, St. Francis of Assisi, Swiss mountaineers, or Scottish clansmen, are regarded as "quirks," "freaks," or rude democrats ("peasants") who could never exploit enough people to build a St. Peter's Cathedral or a Versailles palace.'
    (p. 37-38)

    Forbes has modified the Ten Commandments , a revision by what he calls the “Ecumenical Council of Right-Wing Christianity convened by the Archbishop of Anti-Communism and attended by distinguished theologians following orthodox religious orders: the Society of Bible-Belt Racists, the Order of Secret Police, the Brothers of Military Glory, the Captains of Anti-Union Industry, the Society of Extortionists, Pornographers and Hit-men, the Sons of Apartheid, the High Priests of the CIA, the Improved Order of Successful Medical Doctors, the Mystic Order of International Bankers, and sundry other respected, powerful, and wealthy bodies":

    Quote 1. Thou shalt make a profit.

    2. Thou shalt disown thy parents when they become old and send them away to perish alone; but thou shalt put on an expensive funeral for them for appearances sake.

    3. Thou shalt deceive with false looks and flattering words, for appearances are everything.

    4. Thou shalt gather to thyself alone as many material things as thou can obtain.

    5. Thou shalt save and hoard, sharing not with others unless for thy own self-interest.

    6. Thou shalt adulterate the foods which people eat, and deprive them of healthy sustenance.

    7. Thou shalt take whatever thou can from the forest, from the earth, from the air, or from the defense­less and weak.

    8. Thou shalt kill whenever it profits thee, and thou shalt exalt killing and violence since all progress results therefrom.

    9. Thou shalt be arrogant, aggressive, and bold since such qualities insure success.

    10. Thou shalt not worry about thy sins for the Almighty has arranged a means whereby thou can be forgiven, even at thy death bed. (p. 84)
    If the indigenous victims of the wetiko imperialists and capitalists resisted, they were simply exterminated, as Forbes tells us:

    Revenge can, of course, become a curse among the victims of imperialism because the fulfillment of that desire can lead to inces­sant warfare, great cruelty on all sides, and eventual annihilation for the weaker party.

    In the 1760s many natives sought to resist British expansion in the Pennsylvania and Western Virginia area. Their resistance led General Jeffrey Amherst, British commander, to write to Colonel Henry Bouquet in 1763, "Could it not be contrived to send the small pox among the disaffected tribes of Indians?" Bouquet answered that he would try to start an epidemic and mentioned a wish to hunt "the vermin" with dogs. Amherst replied, "You will do well to try to inoculate the Indians by means of blankets [in which smallpox patients have slept], as well as by every other method that can serve to extirpate this execrable race. I should be very glad if your scheme of hunting them down by dogs could take effect."

    Sadly, this type of viciousness, recognizing no "rules" of warfare, is still commonplace in the Americas, especially where people of American race are involved. Thus in Guatemala, El Salvador, and Nicaragua, the local right-wing elites supported by the United States have committed in recent decades atrocities against Indians and part-Indians of a type which remind us of Columbus, Nuno de Guzman, Pizarro, and other notorious brutes of 400 years ago. Tens of thou­sands of Americans have been tortured, bombed, burned alive, raped, disemboweled, decapitated, and forced into exile in order to preserve the privileges and wealth of multi-national corporations, small white minorities and their corrupted mixed-blood cohorts.

    White scholars and popular writers often speak of "human sac­rifice" as if it were a practice confined to the Aztecs, Carthaginians, Pacific Islanders, or other non-European peoples. Since 1978, how­ever, perhaps a quarter of a million Indian lives have been sacrificed in Central America for the sake of the social status and profits of wealthy people and corporations. A grotesque "anti-communist" ritual has been created in order to provide the ideological-ceremonial trappings for this secular ceremony of human sacrifice. We must no longer allow Eurocentric scholars to define "human sacrifice" in such a manner as to lead us to believe that a priest in a weird costume must cut the heart out of a victim in order for the act of sacrifice to become human sacrifice. Quite the contrary, the greatest and most extensive acts of human sacrifice have been, or are being, carried out by secular forces acting within the framework of ideologies that justify the necessity of sacrificing human lives for some larger goal, be it the attempted Nazi conquest of the Soviet Union, the anti-communist crusade, the earlier Roman Catholic crusade to convert the Americas, or the capitalist's demand for cheap raw materials and compliant economic fiefdoms. Perhaps most victims are now being sacrificed at the feet of the god "Profit."

    As Barbara Cavalier of the California, Manufacturers' Association is quoted as saying in 1986, "We believe you should not inject social standards in investment practices." Thus the desire for profit in the financial centers of Europe, North America, Japan, Latin America, Africa, and everywhere, takes precedence over "social standards" and sets in motion the most far-reaching crimes imaginable. Cheap rubber, bananas, coffee, uranium, whatever resource it is, demands first a blood sacrifice, a cannibal feast. (pp. 103-04)

    Subsequent US policies in the Philippines after 1898 and in Cen­tral America and Caribbean America often continued procedures developed against Native Americans. But especially in the latter two regions the US leadership learned that it was cheaper to use local white or non-white elites and their armies to control the local (often indigenous) population rather than to send in the marines or to assume direct colonial administration. This was known as "Dollar Diplomacy" or, as in the British Empire, "indirect rule." In this system brutal treatment of the Maya and other Native peoples occurred from Mexico and Guatemala to Panama, but the US was able to pretend that its hands were clean. Of course, direct interven­tions in Nicaragua, El Salvador, Panama, Haiti, Chile and elsewhere exposed the lie in such claims.

    These policies have continued into our own era, since the Ronald Reagan and George H. W. Bush administrations chose to directly support client regimes in the latter's oppression of their own peoples or in direct US efforts to prevent any national independence governments (in other words, "socialists") from coming to power as in Nicaragua. The 1970s, 1980s and early 1990s saw the open use of terrorism against indigenous Americans from Guatemala to Nicaragua by US supported, trained, and supplied forces. Still today, forensic anthro­pologists are excavating the remains of hundreds of Mayas massacred in Guatemala and buried in secret mass graves. One excavation has uncovered remains of 350 villagers, including 100 children, massacred by the US supported military in December 1982.
    (p. 127)


    * To be continued in the next post.

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    Default Re: Racism

    Christopher Columbus the Wétiko
    Cont'd from previous post due to size limitations

    Jack D Forbes on Organized Crime by the State

    Until recently it has ordinarily been the state (that is, govern­ments) that have been engaged in organized crime, either directly or by sanctioning (or licensing) their subjects to engage in criminal acts. Some states (such as perhaps certain "pirate" kingdoms) were expressly organized for the purpose of stealing, looting, extorting, enslaving, and so on. But many larger states have also engaged in extensive activities of a similar nature, activities of such economic-significance as to suggest that "armed robbery" was, in effect, the state's major activity (overseas, at least).

    The British, Portuguese, Spanish, Belgian and Dutch empires, for example, were at various times extensively engaged in the crime of seizing per­sons and selling or using them as slaves. This captive trade cannot be viewed as ethically being in any way different from Mafia kidnapping, murder, or extortion except in the sense that it was infinitely more bloodthirsty, profitable, and vicious.

    The leaders of the Sicilian Mafia must appear as mild-mannered, almost decent persons when compared with the Liverpool, London, Boston, Lisbon, and Cadiz dealers in human flesh and butchers of entire nations.

    Thus true organized crime commences with the state or with state-approved aggression. In the 1880s the United States adopted the "Dawes Act" and thereby enabled appropriately placed white citizens to systematically steal land and oil from Native Americans who were supposedly under the guardianship of the United States. This organized thievery, accompanied by threats and murders, was never corrected and never halted, until virtually all parcels of value had been secured by white people, as in much of Oklahoma.

    Similar examples of state-initiated or approved organized crime include the US wars with Mexico designed to steal California and New Mexico, the US seizure of the Filipino Republic, and the City Los Angeles’s acquisition of water of Eastern California (Owens Valley and Mono Lake Basin) in order to make land speculators rich by subdividing the San Fernando Valley.

    State-sanctioned organized crime also includes passing laws which give highly unfair advantages to the wealthy as opposed to the poor, as in making corporations persons in the eyes of the law and mak­ing the owners of a corporation not liable for debts, losses, and so on, or in allowing income tax deductions for fictitious losses (for example, accelerated depreciation on apartment houses or oil deple­tion allowances).

    It is clear then that we live in a world where many states, especially the larger imperial powers, have been or are now formidable forces in the realm of crime. Significantly, state-initiated organized crime must surely set a pattern of behavior which will be imitated at various levels by private persons. Historically the state itself, and especially the European-style expansionist state, is one of the major corrupters of human morals (although it is itself a creature of the wetikos who have seized control of its power apparatus).

    Many states also tolerate a great variety of organized crime which, although not directly sanctioned, is in some manner profitable to the ruling classes. Thus many large corporations (such as the Standard Oil Company before 1910 or the Southern Pacific -Central Pacific Railroad) have often operated in a criminal way. That is, the purpose of such bandit corporations has been to secure the greatest possible profit (or resources for producing profit) even if illegal or unethical activities had to be used. The state usually winked at such large-scale thievery because it was convenient to do so (the railroad will be useful to the state so what does it matter if a few people get rich siphoning off government grants or bankrupting farmers?); or because the state's leaders (congressmen, for example) are sharing directly in the loot.

    The State of Nevada tolerates gambling casinos which are alleged as being largely controlled by Mafia or corporate syndicates because it is profitable to Nevada-based land speculators, contractors, busi­nessmen in general, and public officials to have such businesses in what would otherwise be a very poor and sparsely populated region. (pp. 152-54)

    The tragic thing about all this is that most ordinary citizens will ultimately suffer in such societies, regardless of the temporary benefits received by them. Thus black slavery and Indian removal in the US south did not ultimately benefit the working-class white population. Instead it led to the creation of an oligarchic ruling class which has, even to this day, often depressed wages and living conditions for both poor whites and poor blacks.

    Similarly, the wealth created by the British Empire means very little today to the average Briton who must put up with a stagnant or declining standard of living made worse by the overpopulation of the British Isles. This overpopulation, and the depletion of many original natural resources, has been, in part, the result of early indus­trialization controlled by "robber barons" and overseas imperialism controlled by the same class of people.

    The United States, too, will witness the same decline in the not-too-distant future. An aggressive foreign policy will keep oil, alumi­num, uranium, and other essential raw materials coming in for a few years more, but corporate control of the economy and inequality will ensure that the profits primarily reach the ruling class. In the mean­time, the artificial standard of living created by overseas investments, raw materials, and the exploitation of low-wage labor in Indonesia, Vietnam, Central America, China, Mexico, South Africa, and so on will gradually be eroded from within.

    Imperialism creates the illusion of wealth as far as the masses are concerned. It usually serves to hide the fact that the ruling classes are gobbling up the natural resources of the home territory in an improvident manner and are otherwise utilizing the national wealth largely for their own purposes. Eventually the general public is called upon to pay for all of this, frequently after the military machine can no longer maintain external aggression.

    A good example of how this works on a small scale occurred after World War II when a front corporation reportedly controlled by General Motors, Standard Oil, and a tire manufacturer bought up many of the electric railway transportation systems in the United States. This corporation allowed streetcar service to deteriorate, then it tore up tracks and sold themselves their own buses, rubber tires, and diesel fuel. The new bus lines contributed greatly to air pollution and traffic problems, and when patronage declined the all-bus systems were sold to the public. So "socialism" was used to unload unprofit­able businesses onto the public while a continuing purchase of buses, tires, and diesel fuel was guaranteed. No significant prosecutions have taken place for what seems to have been an organized conspiracy to destroy rail mass transit systems. Now, of course, taxpayers are being asked to build new rail lines at tremendous cost.

    This illustrates on a small scale what happens to entire econo­mies under imperialism. The wealthy classes accumulate wealth, leaving the masses to suffer the consequences of the loss of basic resources, overpopulation, air pollution, environmental contamina­tion, and, more significantly, a society and culture distorted in the value area by decades or even centuries of state-approved violence and aggression.

    In the United States today it is the masses, and especially the poor and working class, who did the fighting and are paying for the Vietnam War and other military adventures and waste. The Vietnam War wasted many tens of billions of dollars (creating an inflation which eroded the earnings of the poor), incredible quantities of petroleum, and other basic resources which precipitated shortages in the US, an adverse balance of payments, and so on. But the rich did not suffer from the Vietnam aftermath because they had the means to raise their incomes to keep ahead of inflation, and being the owners of multinational corpora-i ions, they could obtain resources from many quarters.

    Organized crime, in its many forms, is the most important manner in which the wetiko disease finds concrete expression. It is true that individual wetikos, operating on their own, may cause great misery at times, but it is much more common for the most brutal aggression to take place as a part of an organized, systematic assault. In the Ameri­cas, for example, the terrible Portuguese attacks upon Native people in Brazil, the actions of Spanish conquistadores, the expansionist pushes of Anglo-Saxon of pioneers, and the operations of all manner of exploiters from fur traders to rum sellers to slave hunters took place within imperialist systems whose overall objectives revolved around the central purpose of seizing native lands, resources, and lives for the profit of the system.

    Even today an Original American's life is worth very little in the Americas, because the organized criminal syndicates posing as gov­ernments in many areas still regard the exploitation of the Indians and their resources as a legitimate activity. Ache Indians could not be sold as slaves in Paraguay without the existence of a pro-Nazi government controlled literally by gangsters. Indians could not have been murdered in South Dakota in the 1970s, with no thorough investigations and prosecutions, unless the terrorizing of Indians was indeed a continuing state-approved objective. Mayas could not have been murdered and terrorized systematically in Guatemala during the 1970s to 1990s without the approval of the Guatemalan state (the military) and of the United States, (since the US pays the bills and provides training for the terrorist officer corps).

    In the United States many white people and government agencies are still actively seeking possession of Native land and resources. If this were part of a general campaign to break up large landholdings, create small farms, and open up resources for development, we could at least see it as a non-racial, non-imperialist issue. But when low-income, land-poor Indian people are the sole target and large landholding corporations (such as the Southern Pacific Railroad) and government agencies (in other words, the Bureau of Land Management) experi­ence, little pressure we can be sure that the Native American is still officially and socially perceived as a legitimate victim.

    The federal government of the US is very aggressive in seeking to condemn Indian land for dams and is extremely reluctant to return even admittedly-stolen land. On the other hand, that same government gave the Southern Pacific and Central Pacific railroads fantastic quantities of Indian land which was to be sold to pay railroad construction costs. Much of the land is still owned by the Southern Pacific or its successor corporations (11 percent of California). Some of this land was apparently obtained by fraud (for example, claiming that the Sierra Nevada’s extended to Utah in order to get a larger land grant) but the federal government has never taken any land back from the S.P. Railroad on legal grounds.

    The former S. P. Railroad, for some reason, was not perceived by European-Americans as being a fitting target for their animosity but Wisconsin and Washington State Indians (with virtually no land base left, in most cases) are. So are the Sioux, the Yavapai, the Pit River Indians, and so on. One is tempted to repeat the words of Black Hawk, in reference to the white people who had invaded northwestern Illinois in the 182Os-1830s: "I had not discovered one good trait in the character of the Americans that had come to the country! They made fair promises but never fulfilled them!"

    Another facet of organized systems of aggression is that the gov­ernments, syndicates, corporations, or groups controlling or profiting from such behavior also control the greater part of the organs of public opinion modification. Historically the state, the Christian churches, powerful newspapers, and so on, have conspired frequently to use patriotism, sectarian fervor, news, and propaganda to not only justify aggression, genocide, slavery, and torture but also to make the masses willing (or even anxious) participants. More significantly, as indicated earlier, the entire national culture becomes pervaded by myths, values, and habits of action and thought conducive to the perpetuation of a wetiko society. (pp. 156-159)

    "Finding a Good Path," Forbes' final chapter, rests upon the notion that the real test of a spiritual path is not to see how many monuments result, or how many converts are obtained, or how many prayers are repeated over and over again by imitative voices, but rather the test is: How do people who follow that path behave? How do they behave towards other humans? How do they behave towards the earth? How do they behave towards other living creatures?

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    Russian Federation Avalon Member Sasha Alisa's Avatar
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    Default Re: Racism

    Quote Posted by Mike (here)
    I begin a book of mine with the line: "The Mexican's were everywhere, like air."

    A woman I had been seeing not too long ago declared it racist. I asked why she thought so. But she wouldn't elaborate. She just let out a big sigh, as if to say "if you can't figure it out on your own it's no use telling you."

    That was maybe 6 months ago. And I still don't quite understand her opinion. The book is about some experiences I had in my late 20's, and during that particular time I'd arrived in California from upstate NY. It was a culture shock. The Mexicans really were everywhere. Like air.

    I bring it up because one person's harmless observation is often another's racist comment. It's such a slippery slope. A difficult topic to discuss, for all sorts of reasons.

    One very simple reason are the basic labels we use to describe races. When I see someone write or utter the word "blacks" , it sounds crass and dismissive. And yet, that is usually the term I use myself! Same with "whites", but to a lesser degree. And of course, the absurdist in me also sees the humor. So called black people are really varying shades of brown, and white people are varying shades of.....what? Peach? I'm not even sure!

    But even those comments will offend people! And they are just simple, true observations.

    Why and how people get "offended" and "outraged" might be a thread unto itself.

    I certainly don't think people should be going around using the word ni**er. Non blacks especially. And yet, it sounds awfully silly hearing grown adults referring to this as "the 'N' word" when discussing racial matters. In fact, in a way it even gives the word *more* power. Again, a slippery slope.

    I recall many years ago, in upstate NY, the Native American vendors were getting some tax break on cigarettes. Something like that. And my initial thought was "well, good for them." If they sold 10 billion cigarettes the aggregate benefit wouldn't even match a fraction of the horrors they and their ancestors had suffered,...and yet, the local community went berserk with "outrage". I couldn't believe it! And here we have another issue that no one can seem to agree on, which is this: what, if any reparations should be made for past transgressions between one race of people and another?

    Anyone wanna tackle that one?

    Honestly when I witness things like that cigarette fiasco, it disgusts me. It makes me embarrassed to be human. And thats small beer compared to the real horrors we've perpetrated upon one another.

    It could be said that I was bullied by some black guys my freshman year of high school. I weighed 135lbs then. And I was a huge pussy. But I was still kind of a wise ass and I got myself into trouble with my mouth occasionally. And luckily i was protected from beatings several times by this big tough guy named Travis. A black guy LOL. Thought I'd just drop that little tidbit in here. Food for thought...
    As someone who has lived lots of years among Mexicans and hope to one day become one, i can tell more or less she may have read that as in

    "The beaners were everywhere, like air"

    Mostly out of how a lot of Mexicans feel they are seen from the US citizens point of view

    Reminds me of this song, i think it tells it very well, that feeling. I don't agree much with it by the way but i do get that lots of Mexicans do, because of things that happened between the US and Mexico in the past, and still happen today some places and times?

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l62538RaYtk

    Sometimes, even though is not my problem, i do feel offended if someone says something that i can tell was meant to hurt or insult, like "beaner", so maybe she was just being triggered by it. It's very easy to misinterpret sentences like that

    For me, i get a lot of dumb stuff my way every other week, such like:

    - Are you Japaneeese? How tall are youuuuu?
    + Around 5.11 or so, why?
    - You are tall, Asians are supposed be short lolol, are you suuuuuure you are japaneeeese?
    + I'm half Russian, my mom is from Russia
    - Oohhh, no wondaaa, but you are too flat lolol, aren’t Russian’s girls supposed to be very hot?
    + (mtf)…


    Also the usual, "say something in japanese!" or why don't you dress like japanese girls! And so on..

    But all that stuff mostly stereotype and not racism i guess. And it doesn't really matter much really for someone like me. For people who have had to deal with generations of racism and some deep stuff like what you said about black people or mexicans and how they feel, well that's a completely different story


    Short story:

    My little sis is a complete blonde bimbo LOL, when she was on middle school in California, she was bullied a lot and had into lots of fights because she could not speak English properly and was Russian, even though she looked completely American on the outside

    When she got into a Mexican school a year later, she was bullied because she was an American bimbo (gringa) and was having a hard time speaking Spanish as anyone else was able to (kids did not care if she was speaking Russian or English, she was a gringa) ... LMAO!
    Last edited by Sasha Alisa; 11th March 2020 at 05:31.
    If life situation unclear, keep pressing your hand grip :P

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  39. Link to Post #480
    United States Avalon Member Mike's Avatar
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    Default Re: Racism

    Hi Mashika

    Reading that older post of mine was interesting. Every so often I'll get some beer and read a bunch of my old posts and make a night out of it. I highly recommend everyone do this. It's very revealing. Sometimes I'll think, wow, that was quite good!, and other times I can barely recognize the person that wrote the thing. It's a great indicator of where you once were, where you are now, and where youre going.

    What annoyed me most about my girlfriend at that time was not that she labelled that comment racist, but that she was kind of disingenuous and hypocritical in general. She was a Seattle hipster type, a recreational virtue signaler who would have marched in the streets for Mexicans and blacks just to be seen doing it but would have never dated any of them, for example. And here she was, passing judgement on what I felt was a pretty harmless statement. She wasn't on very firm ground, morally, imo, so I resented her judgement..even if it might have had some truth to it.

    But I take your point and fully understand it! Having viewed it again with fresh eyes, I can indeed see what you mean there and how the line could have been viewed as offensive.

    Ugh, I'm sorry you have to endure all those ignorant judgements and the rest of that racial nonsense. I'm curious: do you find racism to be stronger in Mexico than the US? Or vice versa?

    As I mentioned in that post, I'm originally from upstate NY, which has a very strong native American history. You can't go anywhere without bumping into one of those blue signs representing and explaining why that particular piece of land was a historically relevant one. But what you won't bump into almost ever, unless you travel to one of the reservations, is an actual native American indian. And that's because there's roughly 4 of them left.

    Intellectually I think the idea of any kind of reparations is a terrible idea. I can give you a million good reasons why. But emotionally I have a hard time resisting it, in some instances. The cigarette tax thing is one such instance.

    Thanks for sharing your story. I'll share a short one too:

    My grandfather on my mom's side played a cowboy called "Canyon Jack" on a local tv show when he was a younger man. On his way home one day after work, during one particularly brutal snow storm, he got lost and pulled over into this nondescript little pub to make a phone call. So he walks into this place with his full Canyon Jack outfit on - cowboy hat, boots, spurs, frilly jacket, etc - shakes all the snow off of himself and approaches the bar for a drink. Suddenly the place goes quiet, in the same unsettling way a very noisy jungle goes quiet in the middle of the night..when even the insects shut up for a while. Anyway, he looks up, and the place is packed with native American indians..all staring at him in the same uncomfortable way. So without a word he put his hat back on, turned around, and walked right back out into the storm having never made his phonecall
    Last edited by Mike; 11th March 2020 at 10:07.

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