*edit, May 17, 2019 – I just noticed yesterday evening that the direct links to posts viewed, on the stats page, has had that functionality returned. I’m thrilled. I wasn’t expecting it. It’s rare good news with WP. The screenshot of kokkieh’s announcement is at the bottom of this post. My rant, however, stands. I don’t view WP as one of the good guys. You can’t proudly join forces with evil Google and be on the side of the people. This is a… glitch.
*edit, May 14, 2008 – Below, in my back and forth with a commenter, I referred to the search engine ‘Gibiru’ as ‘Giru’. My bad.
WordPress.com is at it again. In fact, the focus of this post/complaint is not WordPress’s announcement that it’s partnering with (tax-evader and supreme censor) Google, although that’s worth a major rant. Rather, It is their awful dumbing down of their blogging platform further. I just happened to stumble upon the above announcement as I was fishing for an explanation for this latest ‘improvement’. As for the joint venture with Google et al, I only hope that it doesn’t affect me, because Google is my enemy. Google is an enemy of democracy and truth.
This is from the above linked-to blog post and it’s by someone named Mark Armstrong:
Today we’re excited to announce funding for a new platform, Newspack by WordPress.com, aimed at small- and medium-sized news organizations. Google, through the Google News Initiative, is taking the lead in backing the project and has committed $1.2 million.
This time they made the smallest of changes – the way a grenade is small – to WP.com, which I use, although someone who I mentioned this development to who also uses WP (both org and com) said that WP had recently done a facelift or something. But I only noticed one small change. They removed the link icon (hence the direct link) to posts viewed in the stats area. Really? And the disingenuous reason given by a staffer in the non existent discussion (when I first arrived) in a WP forum for that was:
We’ve made this change to make the main stats page less cluttered. We’ve received a lot of feedback about this, and our developers are considering if/how they can add similar functionality back without adding back with rolling back the design changes, but I can’t make any promises at this point.
If I was a monster company like Google or WordPress, I would also have a monstrous pile of emails and letters from users of my products. If I wanted to make a change to one of my products, and I was unethical and aligned with the war-making State which views its people and democracy as the enemy, it would be the easiest thing in the world for me to select from among a zillion emails from users, not all of whom are going to be sane or decent, a small number of those emails that support whatever decision I’ve already made and to offer those to those who could be expected to question my reasons and motives. Really WordPress.com?
“War is the health of the State.” – Randolph Bourne
As for idea that, from the 1%’s standpoint, ‘the people are the enemy’, there’s oodles of evidence for that. It began with JFK, friend of big business, identifying a nation’s domestic population as the “internal enemy.” Putting the people in their place has always been the ruling class’s focus.
Capitalists can’t exploit freely unless they have ways to pacify the abused citizenry. Those ways include propaganda and the use of instruments of repression (comprised of appointed, and paid therefore, gatekeepers), like police, death squads, the intel community and the tech companies that work with them. And note, Within the globe-straddling US-led Corporatocracy, corporations are the head, not the (relatively) dumb body.
“Propaganda is to a democracy what the bludgeon is to a totalitarian state.” – Noam Chomsky
“”I think we should look to President Kennedy as the architect in large measure of the programs and policies of my government and eventually of many other governments directed at the challenge of what was originally called subversive insurgency.”” – Michael Klare (quoting General Maxwell Taylor), pages 40 & 41 of “War Without End – American Planning for the Next Vietnams.”
The following is an excerpt from my blog post titled “Thinking About Thinking”:
“Every individual citizen who in peacetimes had no living fragment of the State becomes an active amateur agent of the Government in reporting spies and disloyalists, in raising Government funds, or in propagating such measures as are considered necessary by officialdom. Minority opinion, which in times of peace was only irritating and could not be dealt with by law unless it was conjoined with actual crime, becomes with the outbreak of war, a case for outlawry. Criticism of the State, objections to war, lukewarm opinions concerning the necessity or the beauty of conscription, are made subject to ferocious penalties, far exceeding [in] severity those affixed to actual pragmatic crimes. Public opinion, as expressed in the newspapers, and the pulpits and the schools, becomes one solid block. “Loyalty,” or rather war orthodoxy, becomes the sole test for all professions, techniques, occupations. Particularly is this true in the sphere of the intellectual life. There the smallest taint is held to spread over the whole soul, so that a professor of physics is ipso facto disqualified to teach physics or hold honorable place in a university — the republic of learning — if he is at all unsound on the war. Even mere association with persons thus tainted is considered to disqualify a teacher. Anything pertaining to the enemy becomes taboo. His books are suppressed wherever possible, his language is forbidden. His artistic products are considered to convey in the subtlest spiritual way taints of vast poison to the soul that permits itself to enjoy them. So enemy music is suppressed, and energetic measures of opprobrium taken against those whose artistic consciences are not ready to perform such an act of self-sacrifice. The rage for loyal conformity works impartially, and often in diametric opposition to other orthodoxies and traditional conformities or ideals. The triumphant orthodoxy of the State is shown at its apex perhaps when Christian preachers lose their pulpits for taking in more or less literal terms the Sermon on the Mount, and Christian zealots are sent to prison for twenty years for distributing tracts which argue that war is unscriptural.” – from “The State”
From the above: “…energetic measures of opprobrium taken against those whose artistic consciences are not ready to perform such an act of self-sacrifice…” Compare that with this: “Lorde didn’t bow to pressure, she rose to the occasion” I’m also reminded of the situation with Chris Hedges, a minister (which actually works against him, in my view) who pulls no punches in speaking truth to power. In return, the State has not been kind to Chris Hedges. The (awful) paper he worked for, namely the New York Times, took him to task for an anti-empire, anti-war speech he gave in 2003 and shortly after Hedges left the paper. As for his involvement in Christendom, that’s between him and Jehovah. Hedges, incidentally, has a lot to say about revolution and his statements about revolution exemplify the core political meaning of the term, which is innovation and society-building minus class warfare. Politically, in this dark world, such innovation is a labored, anxious reaction to oppression from systems put in place by uncaring, rightwing monsters. When people react, thoughtfully, to oppression or even just out of their imaginations to the problems needing solving, the Right (fearing loss of control and the unknown) reacts thoughtlessly, with repression. During the Vietnam ‘war’, as authors Noam Chomsky and Edward Herman note in “The Washington Connection And Third World Fascism,” students (whose business should be thinking about thinking) protesting US aggression in Vietnam were labelled terrorists!
“In each country a web of myths evolves that allows the loyal citizenry to feel good about their nation, that depicts it and its people as generous, progressive, decent to a fault in its international behavior. People who question these myths, whether myths about a beneficent past, or the myths currently employed to put today’s actions and policies in a favorable light, are thus highly offensive to good taste and basic feelings of right and wrong. These doubters of myths may even pose a threat to communal integration and policy, which rest on this foundation of myths, and societies therefore usually have methods for containing or squelching critics who raise such questions.” – Edward Herman, page 1 of “The Real Terror Network – Terrorism In Fact And Propaganda”
“Recall that “subversion,” like “concealed aggression,” is a technical concept covering any form of unwelcome internal development. Thus the Joint Chiefs, in 1955, outline “three basic forms of aggression”: armed attack across a border (aggression in the literal sense); “Overt armed attack from within the area of each of the sovereign states”; “Aggression other than armed, i.e., political warfare, or subversion.” An internal uprising against a US-imposed police state, or elections that come out the wrong way, are forms of “aggression,” which the US has the right to combat by arbitrary violence. The assumptions are so ingrained as to pass without notice, as when liberal hero Adlai Stevenson, UN Ambassador under Kennedy and Johnson, declared that in Vietnam the US is defending a free people from “internal aggression.” – pg 41 of “Rethinking Camelot – JFK, the Vietnam War, and US Political Culture” by Noam Chomsky
In view of the above State concept of ‘internal aggression’, it’s sobering to realize that US officials (choose to) view the Communist conspiracy as global. In other words, the people, as in regular people, everywhere, are seen by those who own and rule the world as a threat to be dealt with via ruination [or turning, the way a citizen is turned by foreign agents into a traitorous spy or the way a vampire makes another vampire] or murder.