*edit, July 12, 2015 – Try as I might, I cannot get WP to cooperate on enclosing marks. I’ve got a Bible passage below that WP allows me to punctuate the way I want to punctuate it, with the exception of the beginning enclosing marks. (I need “” where both are curved the same bloody way!) I don’t care whether my punctuation is right or wrong, I don’t need WP screwing with it. What I write should be what I see I’ve written. I lost my respect for WP, the company, some time ago. But they’re like Microsoft. They are big. When you let them into your life, that’s a big deal. Just dropping WP would be a real pain. But I’d like to. If I knew I had a good alternative… Then again, Who’s decent these days? That’s just so you know, if you happen to notice it.
The following is an excerpt from the above linked-to article by Andy Kroll:
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In a case billed as “Citizens United II,” the US Supreme Court on Monday refused to hear new arguments on the wisdom of its 2010 Citizens United decision, the court’s most controversial campaign finance ruling in years. By a 5-4 vote, the court summarily reversed a decision by the Montana Supreme Court upholding that state’s century-old ban on independent political spending by corporations. This deals a blow to reformers who hoped to undo or chip away at Citizens United and stem the expansion of special interest money in elections.
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The five judges who stood by their decision to embrace corruption and fascism in this way says a lot about the state of our civilization. They stand alongside all elites who are happy to be a part of an exploitative, brutal system called corporatocracy. However, Andy Kroll, in his article, notes that: “Rick Hasen, a professor at the University of California-Irvine’s law school, writes on his website that in fact the court’s summary reversal is a “relative victory” for campaign finance reformers. “As I have written, I was simply baffled by the full court press to get the court to take the case,” he writes. “Taking the case would have been an opportunity for the majority of Supreme Court justices to make things worse, such as by suggesting that limits on direct contributions to candidates are unconstitutional.”” Perhaps.
Corporatocracy is fascist (which means that it cuts out the people, leaving mainly capitalists in control, utilizing the governments they’ve captured to give themselves the veneer of democracy and legitimacy that will smooth the way for them), racist (capitalist expansion is devouring the largely colored global South, and, here in Canada, the indigenous communities), environmentally destructive and quite brutal (again, utilizing governments, but in this instance, their instruments of force and repression), since neoliberal policies and measures, which are harmful to people and the environment, are never freely accepted (except when people have become extremely stupid, which we are seeing in places like Greece and Wisconsin) by people and so have to be forced on them. (See Naomi Klein’s “The Shock Doctrine” and Todd Gordon’s examination of imperial Canada in his book titled “Imperialist Canada.”)
Force can be physical. And it can be whatever gets around objections, which deceit and manipulation will accomplish. Dark money in politics is an excellent example of force used by undemocratic players. When rightwingers talk about free speech for corporate persons, implying that it’s democratic and only those who don’t agree with free speech would reject that, they somehow fail to talk about how that free speech by corporations and special interests so often comes from hidden corporations and hidden special interests. If I call your mother a slut, but anonymously, Does it count? Sometimes the physical force comes when the propaganda fails, but it is always in the background and never completely absent.
Corporatists have another weapon at their disposal in their attack on the people, and on democracy and light itself, namely corporate-owned media. In a discussion between Amy Goodman, Juan González, Andy Kroll and Monika Bauerlein, Juan González makes the important point that we can’t expect the major media (which is pushed at us – because the Right is rich and powerful and can be in your face easily – and which most people get their information from) to defend democracy by exposing dark money. Consider:
JUAN GONZÁLEZ: And what about the role of the press, of the—especially of the commercial media, in shedding light on this dark money? Obviously, a lot of the money that’s being raised ends up going to paid advertising on television and radio and in newspapers. So there’s a self-interest problem here for the press, in terms of unmasking or campaigning against this dark money.
MONIKA BAUERLEIN: It is an influx of money for broadcasters, and to some extent, print media. And, you know, surely they all need it.
We are told what to think by major media and their allies. We aren’t given the information that we need to be able to come to right conclusions, because we don’t need that. Those who know best will take care of things. They are corporations, we see. Politicians are there to stamp ‘approved’ on the policies and trade deals that they and their lawyers make, away from the eyes of citizens who will have to live with the punishment being designed for them, packaged by politicians as ‘benefits’. Like corporations selling garbage, we are in effect told by politicians, lawyerly John Netleys and robed and distinguished judges, to “Take what you get whether you like it or not and even if it hurts you.” Austerity is good – where the people are concerned. Prosperity is deserved – by the well-dressed, well-fed and well-armed 1%.
The gift of mysterious lawlessness, given to those who willingly sin in order to survive, is nothing less than a dark, perverted spirit, most useful to those who have decided that they can and should do anything to survive. It allows one to cross any line and break any written and unwritten rule, to play the great, Darwinian game of ‘riches for the strongest’. It is most horrifying in the hands of those who most know better, namely the professionals and authorities who are the politicians, judges and (some) educators. They are the “Benefactors” in power, as Jesus called them (Luke 22:24-27). Jesus also said “If in reality the light that is in you is darkness, then how great that darkness is!” (Matthew 6:22)
What we are witnessing in this extremely dark time is the spectacle of ‘law and order’ governments killing mercilessly, torturing for fun, terrorizing and trying hard to destroy the liveable earth while politicians and capitalists and rich people are having the best time they can have, just as the rich man in purple did in Jesus’s parable at Luke chapter 16. His judgement was certain, and, when made known to him, caused him great anguish. But neither his anguish, nor his prosperity, nor his family, nor his glory could change his judgment. You reap what you sow.
There is a chasm between tax evading legal persons called corporations and the 99% that is forced to pick up the slack as a result of the missing funds that those unpaid taxes represent. That chasm separates the living from the dead – in God’s eyes. And God is the Source of life. God isn’t imperfect man, I’m sorry to report. That same chasm exists between the politicians (prior to being elected) who huddled with the people and agreed to a certain course of action, which would have resulted in certain laws, and those people who found out later that those laws could be crushed or ignored. That chasm separates losers (called winners in this world) from winners (the bewildered herd in the eyes of this world’s rulers). Obama’s flurry of police state laws not only give more power to the state’s instruments of force and repression so that the abused people can be dealt with when they rise up, but they automatically (not democratically) jettison civil rights and privacy laws that were put in place before the pretenders, in league with their corporate partners, made their move. And so on.
That’s how it works. There are wolves among us when we get together to decide on the (tax, privacy, environmental and other) rules (which become laws) that will enable society to function harmoniously and for the benefit of everyone. And then, with his gift in hand, the wolf in sheep’s clothing strategically breaks those rules so as to gain dominance in society. From a position of dominance, he can then persuade – by force. And he can guarantee outcomes for himself, his family, friends and allies. That’s how you win in the game of ‘riches for the strongest’. And that’s how you lose in the game of life. That’s how you lose spiritually.
The thing is, Those ones who have conveniently decided that there is no God, are frantic to prove it to themselves. They need to fully believe it, just as a scratch needs to be fully effective. They are in a bind. To prove to themselves that there is no God, they ramp up the evil. But if there is a God, then that tactic will backfire big time. (Then again, Darkness is it’s own reward.) But until the real God does make an appearance (measured in one way), every lick of light will be in danger of being extinguished by vampires who can’t stand the itch of insufficient proof. That means that the most innocent people you can think of will become targets. Think weddings in Pakistan, including women and children and people of all age groups. Think whistleblowers like Julian Assange and Bradley Manning. Think young victims, like Omar Khadr, caught in a war between monsters. Think journalists murdered for doing their jobs. Think of the millions of innocent (relatively) citizens made to pay for the criminality of bankers (with bailouts for the bankers and austerity for themselves) who are protected by the president of the United States. Have all ideas for lights that can be extinghished been considered? What about innocents who are also, in addition to being innocent (never perfect, for no one is), loyal to God? (hint: They are not found exclusively in Israel, as Jesus made abundantly clear. Nor are they everyone who claims to be a follower of Jesus, let alone a believer in law and order, as Jesus made abundantly clear. See John 4:21 & Matthew 7:22,23).
See: Iraq War Logs
“And the word of Jehovah continued to occur to me, saying: “Son of man, Set your face against Gog of the land of Magog… and prophesy against him. And you must say, ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord Jehovah has said: “Here I am against you, O Gog… And I shall certainly turn you around and put hooks in your jaws and bring you forth with all your military force, horses and horsemen, all of them clothed in perfect taste… After many days you will be given attention. In the final part of the years you will come to the land of people brought back from the sword, collected together out of many peoples… And it must occur in that day that things will come up into your heart and you will certainly think up and inurious scheme. And you must say: “I shall go up against the land of open rural country. I shall come in upon those having no disturbance, dwelling in security, all of them dwelling without wall, and they do not have even bar and doors.” It will be to get a big spoil and to do much plundering, in order to turn your hand back upon devastated places reinhabited and upon a people gathered together out of the nations, one that is accumulating wealth and property, those who are dwelling in the center of the earth…”
“”And as regards you, O son of man, This is what the Sovereign Lord Jehovah has said: ‘Say to the birds of every sort of wing and to all the wild beasts of the field: “Collect yourselves together and come. Gather yourselves together all around to my sacrifice which I am sacrificing for you, namely a great sacrifice on the mountains of Israel. And you will certainly eat flesh and drink blood. The flesh of mighty ones you will eat, and the blood of the chieftains of the earth you will drink… And you must get satisfied at my table on horses and charioteers, mighty persons and all sorts of warriors,” is the utterance of Jehovah. “And I will set my glory among the nations and all the nations will have to see my judgment that I have executed and my hand that I have placed among them.”” (Ezekiel chapters 38 & 39. See also Revelation 20:7-10)
‘Gog’ is another name for the rebellious angel that the Bible also refers to as ‘Devil’ and ‘Satan’ and it apparently means ‘darkness’. That rebel is not, today, any different than when he began. But his situation is different and that has implications for the world he rules over – while he’s permitted to. The Bible reveals that Satan undergoes progressive abasement. Abasement means a lowering of sorts. The dictionary mentions rank and prestige. In Satan’s case, it mostly refers to the destruction he unleashes over time, but it also refers to his being kicked out of heaven (1914), which will be followed by his confinement and removal from heaven and earth (temporarily) following Armageddon. Satan certainly doesn’t lift himself up by pursuing his war with God, in which our lives are the weapon he uses. But the time is late, from the Bible’s standpoint, and the situation is unique in certain respects. The ruler of this world has a dark role to play at this time which he’s playing. Also, Where his darkness reigns, or where people accept his gift of mysterious lawlessness in other words, That is where you’ll find Magog.
Are the exploited not seen as a bewildered herd and as blood-thirsty wild animals by elites and their instruments of force?