empire watch, latest, Latin America, Venezuela
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Thinking about Venezuela

by Philip Roddis, from Steel City Scribblings

One reason Maduro is despised by the opposition is he refuses to follow the neoliberal economic prescription of austerity, privatization, deregulation, etc. Such refusal makes Venezuela almost unique in Latin America now. As Brazilian professor Dawisson Belem Lopes has written, “Brazil, Argentina, Mexico, Colombia, Paraguay and Peru have proud neoliberals serving as presidents these days,” even though the “neoliberal experience of the 1990s was disastrous for Latin Americans.”CounterPunch, August 11, 2017

“We’re all over the world and have troops all over the world”, said Trump. “Venezuela is not very far away and the people are suffering and dying. We have many options for Venezuela including a possible military option if necessary.” Guardian, August 12, 2017

It never happened. Nothing happened. Even while it was happening it wasn’t happening. The crimes of the United States have been systematic but few have talked about them. America has exercised a clinical manipulation of power while masquerading as force for universal good. It’s a brilliant act of hypnosis, language employed to keep thought at bay. Harold Pinter, accepting the 2005 Nobel Prize for Literature

Setting aside for now the internecine war America’s ruling class is waging on its fantasist in residence at the White House – manifesting itself in the case of Venezuela as anger not at Trump’s desire to get rid of Maduro but, as with Kim in North Korea, his cackhanded way of going about it – I see at least two valid responses thinking people will make to Washington’s ‘concerns’ at the dictatorship it says is emerging in Caracas.

The most basic response, the one most indicative of a functioning brain, can be expressed in two simple questions. Why would anyone in their right mind take such ‘concerns’ at face value when the US record in Latin America – a small but fair sample might include Cuba 1961, Chile 1974 and Honduras 2009 – shows that it cares not one iota for the democratic rights, welfare or prosperity of its peoples? And why would anyone in their right mind take such ‘concerns’ at face value when the US record in any part of the world where oil resides – Iran 1953, devil’s pact with Riyadh and past fifteen years of chaos, destitution and terror in the middle east – shows it cares not one iota for the democratic rights, welfare or prosperity of its people?

Seriously: be it Team Bush or Team Obama, Team Hillary or Team Donaldo, why in God’s name should we see anything here but crocodile tears and icy self interest?

I can think of an answer to that. It’s not a great one but it likely gets at the truth. The reason too few see crocodile tears and icy self interest here is because so many of us live – as John Pilger, pace Pinter, recently put it – in an eternal present. That needn’t mean being literally ignorant (though many are) of the fate of Allende or stink of hypocrisy from ‘our’ relations with Riyadh. Life in the pastless present doesn’t require our oblivion to history so much as our oblivion to its ongoing relevance. Those undoubtedly well intentioned people, many of them on the left, who joined the chorus condemning Assad are hardly unaware of Iraq or Libya. To be sure, many of those I’ve engaged with seem pretty clueless about Ba’athism – its strengths and weaknesses, achievements and excesses – but there’s a myopia altogether more elementary at play here: a stubbornly empiricist refusal to join the dots; rather, to view each new situation as isolated and without precedent. Which is one way of saying they don’t grasp the nature of imperialism. It’s bad enough when liberals do this, but when the Eternally Now declare themselves socialists, marxists even, better chaps than I hold their heads and groan.

But back to Venezuela and the question, why believe a word Washington – and by extension a rightwing opposition within the country that always stood to lose from public ownership and fairer taxation a la Chavez – says about the government in Caracas? Not only the phoney tears, but assertions of fact too, should be regarded as suspect till upheld by sources less corrupt. The latter, I might add, no more include the likes of US backed Human Rights Watch on Venezuela than they do US funded ‘White Helmets’ on Syria …

To sum up response number one, it ain’t necessarily so. But for those with most to gain from a Maduro ousted, that’s not the point. Charges of vote rigging on July 30 remain scandalously unsubstantiated – how exactly were those thumb-print validated votes ‘tampered’ with? – but, as with discredited claims of Damascus having used sarin at Ghouta and Idlib, such allegations, repeated ad infinitum in corporate media of both rightist and liberal stripe, tend to stick.

A second response requires more nuanced thinking. I don’t want to labour a point I explore at length in a post on universalism so will be brief. Even where allegations of authoritarianism are upheld, we do well to take note of context. Universalists seldom do this. Implicitly or explicitly, governments across the global south that displease Wall Street, Washington and IMF are held to standards set by the West. Freedoms we enjoy, however, are not only limited and conditional but premised on minimal levels of prosperity, without which direct repression would be needed to maintain a status quo that concentrates wealth created by the many in the hands of the few. History suggests most will tolerate such inequality so long as those minimal prosperity levels hold. But relations of capitalist wealth creation are now globalised in the sense of imperialised nations like Venezuela being tightly integrated in what mainstream economists, disingenuously or naively, call a global ‘value chain’.

The long and short of that, subject of a forthcoming post, is the extraction of super-profits via labour costs held down by a vast army – displaced from the land, too numerous to find full employment in the city and immobilised by immigration controls – of the unemployed within the global south. So freedoms enjoyed in the imperialist West not only do not but cannot flourish in imperialised nations. To castigate the leaders of movements striving, however imperfectly, to improve things for the super-exploited – on grounds of failure to meet impossible standards – is to pile insult on top of hypocrisy on top of systematic theft.

All the more so when the freedoms in question – ‘rights’ of media owning comprador classes to peddle lies, half truths and blatantly self serving narratives and, a little less obviously, rights of assembly temporarily curtailed in incendiary circumstances – are suspended precisely because to do otherwise must hand victory to reactionary and rapacious forces. Does this sound a shade too Leninist for those whose prime information sources are Guardian and BBC? That bourgois nationalist Simon Bolivar, a giant in South America’s stormy modern history, had much to say on such dilemmas, none of it kind to universalism. Here’s John Lynch, Director of the Institute of Latin American Studies, writing in History Today.

Bolivar was not so idealistic as to imagine South America ready for pure democracy, or that the law could annul inequalities imposed by nature and society. He spent his whole political life developing and modifying his principles, seeking the elusive mean between democracy and authority. In Bolivar the realist and idealist dwelt in uneasy rivalry.

I rest my case. You’ll note I’ve said next to nothing on the specifics of Venezuela’s current plight. That, you may have guessed, is because I know next to nothing, though I’m busy playing catch-up. These words aren’t by way of knowing what will or even should happen next. Rather, they are by way of setting out a few parameters of intelligent inquiry. Not as means of bypassing the specifics but as precondition for making reliable sense of them.

Speaking of which, the Guardian, on the eve of last month’s Constituent Assembly election, saw fit to offer a piece entitled, Venezuela to vote amid crisis: all you need to know. Well even I – my eye almost exclusively on the middle east this past eighteen months – could see that what followed so audacious a header failed miserably to deliver on its promise. Luckily, its merciless dissection by Ricardo Vaz in Off-Guardian – The Guardian’s propaganda on Venezuela: all you need to know – does a better job.


29 Comments

  1. Very nice post. I simply stumbled upon your blog and wanted to say that I have truly enjoyed
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  2. Jake says

    I have family in Venezuela. You are so wrong about everything in this article. People are starving and it is very real. Chavez took everything, businesses, homes, and food and decided to distribute it all to who he wanted. As unemployment became greater to help he raised the wages and businesses went under. They just gave out another wage increase but there are no jobs. Coffee grows wild but they no longer have processing plants. There are rolling black outs. Maybe you need to read news from Venezuala instead of making assumptions. Maybe the news from Columbia and Brazil where they have cross borders to shop for food and they are now not returning to Venezuela and have joined the ranks of refugees. You are doing a horrible disservice to the people dying from starvation. Trump is a bully and so are you by not actually knowing what the hell your talking about to stir the pot as a real crisis is occurring

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    • writerroddis says

      What you say of people starving may or may not be true. I make it clear I don’t know the situation on the ground. What I do know something about, however, is the nature of imperialism (second of the two responses thinking people will make to Washington’s ‘concerns’) and a US history in Latin America and oil producing nations that make it wise to treat its claims about Caracus with extreme suspicion (first of the two responses).

      If you want to nail the biggest villains here, and avoid a disservice to the Venezuelan people, look to the architects and beneficiaries of conditions of global exploitation: conditions which a Chavez or a Maduro, and for that matter a Castro or an Assad, seek however imperfectly to resist. I mean the very interests that now profess such affront and righteous sorrow/anger at Maduro’s ‘dictatorship’. You can see more fully where I stand on the workings of imperialism from other of my comments on this page. Tell me what’s wrong with my understanding as expressed there. Thanks in anticipation.

      Liked by 2 people

    • BigB says

      @Jake: so you have real personal concerns, which I appreciate – but help us out? You post a comment trying to emotionally boycott any debate: how does that help??? And let’s be honest: what is said here will have zero impact on the situation in VZ. You highlight symptoms without offering structural analysis or solutions. Trust me, no one wants to do a disservice to the suffering or dying: quite the opposite – I seek solidarity.

      You don’t indicate what outcome you seek? Under extreme and mounting external pressure, Maduro is trying to consolidate power and preserve what he can of Chavismo: for instance by creating CAMIMPEG (Military Company of the Mining, Oil and Gas Industries); giving the military shares in the state PDVSA. Probably to avoid being shot? One can only speculate as to whether he would have done so without external pressure???

      My point is: VZ’s internal politics are not being decided in a vacuum. There is a geo-political malevolent external parasite extending inside the country that can’t be ignored in any appraisal of the situation. The M$M are trying to paint a picture conducive to that parasite taking over the country. Where will the people (including your relatives) be then? Starving without a safety net as compradors rape their sovereign wealth. Is that what you want? If not; help us form a counter-narrative???

      Liked by 3 people

    • from Mike Prysner who is in Venezuela: “…..Democracy is absolutely not their aim. This is a small group of people led by the owners of large monopoly corporations. The opposition can’t win at the ballot box – they’ve tried but can’t reverse the left-wing gains and a huge majority of the people are behind the government. So they’re trying to bypass democracy, that’s why violence is the tactic.
      The political motives are clear – they don’t like the government giving benefits to poor people and they want the huge corporate monopolies back. One man interviewed said he was protesting because he wants to be an entrepreneur and make money, not have the government giving money to the poor.
      There are no anti-government protests in poor areas, only in the well off areas, protesters are wearing expensive jewellery – the rich areas are also where most of the deaths have occurred.
      There’s also economic violence. The opposition leaders are owners of large corporations and they are trying to tank the economy. If Maduro lines up international finance, they have intervened to prevent the loans going through.
      The one loan that did go through recently – Wells Fargo, I think it was – became the subject of big PR campaign against it – the opposition is trying to make things worse for people.
      They’re even creating shortages – of the nine commodities in shortest supply in Venezuela, a single company owned by an opposition leader is responsible for seven of them – and there are stockpiles, but they’re kept out of circulation to create shortages. And of course, where the government has warehoused supplies ready for distribution, those have been attacked – like those 50 tonnes of food that was burned.
      Diapers and toilet paper are shown as in short supply – they are in the stores, but it’s easy to get both on the black market. There’s no shortage, it’s just being channelled elsewhere – again, by those opposition-controlled corporations…..”
      So “Jake” which side of the street are you and yours from? Obviously not from the poor side or you wouldn’t be spouting the opposite of what the poor in Venezuela are saying.

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  3. Russia has now thrown its hat into the ring with Lavrov announcing, “We are united in the need to overcome the existing disagreements in the country by peaceful means through a nationwide dialogue as soon as possible, without any external pressure, not to mention the unacceptability of the threats of military intervention in the internal affairs of this country.”

    It will be interesting to see how the would be hegemons in the US respond. The plunging oil price was meant to target Russia but failed. It has impacted on Venezuela for reason outlined by BigB. But as with Russia given targeting investment in industries that ensure self-sufficiency, thereby ensuring jobs they can turn the current situation around.

    However as the global geopolitical situation is in such a state of flux and mortgaged beyond the hilt it is difficult to see how the many flash points will play out. Of course in a rational world the debt would be written down or even off. But as we saw with the Banking Crisis of 2008 that option is not the preferred one of the 1%.

    What is needed is a revised model of creative productive economics not the casino capitalism we have ended up with, which is clearly the economics of the madhouse.

    Liked by 3 people

    • BigB says

      My understanding may not be definitive, but here goes… VZ’s main (only) export commodity is oil; Chavez nationalized oil production when the price was high; (I assume) presuming the price would always remain high, he diverted the bulk of the money into state social programmes (petro-socialism) but did not re-invest sufficient in future oil production, or diversify the economy; the price of oil came down, the lighter grades of oil dried up, and the heavy crude is stuck in the ground; Maduro has had to borrow heavily on an oil-for-loans basis (from China mainly, and Russia too); but the current production is insufficient to keep up the repayments.

      IMO, the current US tactic is to force VZ into default; then send in the IMF ‘knee-crackers’ (as Michael Hudson calls them). They would obviously ‘neoliberalise’ the oil; and end the socialism (the Bolivarian Revolution). Apart from essentially funding the orchestrated opposition violence: the US could really turn the screw by ceasing the import of VZ crude (which amounts to 60% of their exports and would deny them of $$$ overnight); but that would hurt the US too. Similarly, they could stop VZ importing lighter grades of oil (and naptha) they need to dilute the heavy crude: but not without cost to their own oil industry (see below). The military option is Trumpian bluster… for now.

      Much of the shortages we are hearing about is due to artificial scarcity (‘scarce’ items are readily available on the black market). Here is a good overview of the situation on the ground. Sorry, that was probably more than you wanted, even though I left out more than I put in. In case you can’t tell: I do have a view – Viva la revolución!

      [I tried not to be too biased, though.]

      Liked by 3 people

      • writerroddis says

        Good answer. I hope davidjsimpson1952 found it as helpful as I do. I’d add that, besides the specifics – vital but beyond my ken – of Venezuela, it’s also vital we generalise to factors common to all imperialised nations. Cottons in Bangladesh .. coffee in Vietnam .. iPhones in China – capitalist division of labour is global. Meanwhile Marx’s law of value shows the source of profit as the unique capacity of one commodity, labour power, to generate value over and above its own. Hold that thought.

        In our imperialised world a global south pushed hard by the IMF has largely shifted from exporting raw materials to manufacture for export: to integration in what mainstream economists desperate to deny a law of value and all that implies call a value-added chain. Super profits over and above those possible in the global north are extracted through the very specific conditions of (a) displacement of hundreds of millions of small farmers, (b) inability of manufacturing to absorb all the surplus labour and (c) immigration controls which prevent the international mobility of labour – a glaring exception to the principle of globalisation, and the planetary equivalent of apartheid’s infamous Pass Laws. Conditions (a) and (b) also applied in nineteenth century Europe, with Marx and Engels writing a great deal on the role, vital to capitalism, of a reserve army of unemployed. But the opening up through racist genocide of Americas and Antipodes set limits to that reserve army. In the global south of today, by contrast, (c) removes that brake except where it suits the north (eg brain drain of medical knowhow that sees more Malawi doctors, trained at that poor country’s expense, working in New York City than in Malawi itself). In such conditions wages can be held down – in extreme cases below the costs of feeding worker and children – to boost profits. It’s fair to say the screeds of “value chain” literature pumped out each year by economic ‘science’ are all by way of denying or obscuring the fact that low wages are the key driver of the ‘export of jobs’ to the global south.

        Stay with me! The imperialised nations first to industrialise, the ‘little tigers’ of the Pacific Rim, did OK. But as more countries in the south enter this ‘value chain’ the law of supply and demand favours the importing north. Local capitalists and politicians, in fierce competition with rival imperialised nations, must use ever more repressive measures to stay competitive. In these conditions, local share of the surplus value – even by the sweatshop owners – is small: most of it flows north to be shared by the different rentier capitals and, through tariffs and taxes, the state. Needless to say, the role of orgs like the IMF is to maintain and intensify this status quo; punishing nations that refuse to play the game.

        States, mostly in Africa, that don’t switch from raw materials to manufactured goods fare worse. The one exception is oil; a huge and complex subject in its details – which is where BigB comes in – but simple in the fundamentals. The need to control oil has driven western policy for the past century; most infamously in the middle east but elsewhere too. Which of course is the most obvious reason – alongside US determination to nip socialism in the bud in Latin America, regardless of human suffering there – not to buy any of the hand in Washington, London, Paris, Berlin etc over ‘dictator’ Maduro.

        It doesn’t do, though, to be overly mechanistic or reductionist here. Imperialism is capable of playing a long game. I recall in the eighties when Mrs Thatcher sent aircraft carriers, battleships and umpteen destroyers thousands of miles to a bunch of godforsaken rocks in the South Atlantic. Various theories were floated on the left: valuable minerals in Antarctica was one such. I dare say there was truth there but none of the theories explained why the entire imperialist club of nations (with a few key exceptions in the Reagan administration) cheered her on. In an imperialist world, states that step out of line have to be punished, regardless of expense or short term inconvenience.

        Liked by 1 person

        • BigB says

          Excellent comment. I see, among others, that you have been reading David Harvey? Oui ou non? If not, he makes many similar observations in “The New Imperialism”… Or one of his other books… can’t quite remember. Anyway, keep up the good work. TTFN.

          Liked by 1 person

          • writerroddis says

            Thanks BigB. In answer to your question, it’s a non – but I have encountered Harvey indirectly, via John Smith’s stupendous work on imperialism, a book I review today on this site.

            Liked by 1 person

    • I look forward to a real reply – I can guess that they did not conform to the demands of the economic hit man?
      Could it be as simple as that? You could say the ‘economy’ of a lot of places is fooked but also ‘serviced’.
      The mainstream like to generate stories of diversion. With Greece the story of its economic failure is the lazy non tax paying Greeks – (these two stories !don’t exactly align do they), but the facts point to corrupted leadership induced to sell their people/country into serfdom – regardless of whether the Greeks work hard or pay taxes.
      It is often stated that ‘socialism’ doesn’t work – and that may be said of capitalism too – but what is operating is transnational corporate power set against anything and anyone in the way of profits – that does not care what face it operates through excepting to maximise profits and seek control of protecting its revenue streams.
      So any leadership of any nation of import (ie: resources or strategic location) who does not play along, can not only be isolated – it can have its wealth flee the country as well as lose investment and be downgraded for credit terms (high interest on loans) and withholding of support from such as IMF unless agreeing onerous terms.
      Perhaps my off the cuff guessing is entirely wrong – but I’d enjoy reading any other contributions – especially from someone with a real relationship to the people there.

      Political ‘power’ uses politicians to protect corporate interests against the checks and balances of social and environmental responsibility. Perhaps with a groundswell of support a political movement might check corporate power – but more likely it will be a global financial power operating through a global government that breaks them up and limits them… after nations are relieved of any residual sovereignty.

      Liked by 1 person

    • DavidJSimpson.
      “I’d like a very simple 3 (approx) point explanation of why the Venezuelan economy is fucked please. I believe it is at the mo’. I have no view.”
      I’ll go one better – it isn’t “f****d”, people in the UK are in no better state.

      from Mike Prysner in Venezuela:….

      “The perception outside Venezuela is completely at odds with the reality on the ground. The whole ‘failed state’ thing – it’s just issues in economy being blown up. Unemployment in Venezuela is only 6.6%, foreign debt payments are being made on time. GDP is rising.
      Venezuela is not in an economic crisis, it’s in an economic war.
      Of course there are problems from the fall in oil prices, but all the things being portrayed big in the media are created by the opposition – the violence, the shortages. There’s an attempt to create an opportunity for the western, mainstream media to say ‘this country is screwed’ so it can be ‘rescued’.
      But it’s not the government screwing up the economy – that’s being done by big corporate monopolies. It’s not the government instigating the violence – that’s originating with the protesters, who are backed and even paid by corporations and even outside governments. And it’s all for the purpose of overthrowing democracy, not saving it.”
      You can find it on the Global Research site from Skwawkbox

      Liked by 2 people

  4. BigB says

    Phillip: all you need to know about Venezuela – it’s the oil, stupid! The obvious answer: but maybe not for the obvious reason. After reading and commenting on David William Pear’s post (Venezuela Under Siege by U.S. Empire, 20th July): I was still intrigued as to why the US would want to start another oil war amid global overproduction, slowed demand, and low prices – for oil that is currently not worth that much, hard to extract (it’s tarlike extra heavy crude), and cheaper to buy elsewhere??? Besides, the US already gets 60% of the production: denominated in $$$. Is it really worth the effort to secure the entire production for themselves; when their own shale & gas production has turned the US into a net exporter???

    Big Oil makes Big Money: it’s guaranteed, right? Not necessarily. The Big 3 US oil producers (ExxonMobil, Chevron and ConocoPhillips) are in a debt death spiral: the gist of which goes something like this… hit by the currently low prices; over-invested in shale & gas production; they have to borrow heavily against future profitability; to maintain their current profitability, they have to cut back on expenditure – by selling capital assets; or by cutting back on exploration and investment in future extraction (CAPEX); this gives them the free cash flow to pay shareholders and service debt – at the expense of cutting back on future profitability; putting them in the red … so they have to borrow more against future profitability… eventually leading to the possibility of “stranded assets”… or a future crash (more likely a bail out?)

    The debt levels are racking up, and by kicking the oil can down the road – could well become unsustainable in the near future. What would put off a nasty crash? Well, getting their hands on the largest proven deposits of oil in the world might help??? Seems to me T-Rexxon Tillerson, and the US economy have an existential need for that oil? At any cost??? I only hope the Bolivarian Revolution can outstay the negative knock-on effects of the US shale & gas revolution???

    Liked by 4 people

    • writerroddis says

      Another good comment BigB. I should have read this before I wrote my own War & Peace length comment above, also sparked by you!

      Liked by 1 person

    • Well done BigB, you can cut through the miasma of disinformation, all the sideshows and alternate theories and come up with a 1 point answer. Love it!

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  5. rehmat1 says

    Since Hugo Chavez rise to power, every successive US administration have tried to bring a regime change in Venezuela.

    In February, 2017, Trump administration announced sanctioning of Venezuelan Vice-president Tareck El-Aissami, 42, over his links to Lebanese Islamic Resistance Hizbullah. Washington put a freeze on El-Aissami’s assets, mostly in real-state, which would soon be opened for the families of 147 Israeli soldiers killed by Hizbullah fighters in 2006 war to dip-in.

    “We shall not be distracted by these miserable provocations. Truth is invincible and we will see this vile aggression dispelled,” El Aissami wrote on Twitter.

    https://rehmat1.com/2017/02/16/us-venezuelan-vp-is-pro-hizbullah/

    Liked by 2 people

  6. The eternal present is true presence.
    The usurping of this appreciation by a past made in anger that stamps its boot on the future to replicate the past upon the fleeting present is an everlasting repetition UNTIL the presence of mind is regained in which to question the past that all along was made of present denials – and free the future to unfold of its true presence.

    Eternal is timeless or time unbound. If you look to see the ‘edges’ around your now you will not find them. But insofar as thought defines them – are we directed and focused where such thought would have us. Therefore narrative control is the control of the past by which to frame the present in terms of the past – as if no other perspective is possible.

    Narrative continuity is a function of the personality construct by which to support the linear subjectivity upon which the perception of persistence of objects depends. So although it is limiting, it is also a very specific focusing device. The operation and co-option of defences for a psychic adaptation of personality structure is running as if it was survival – period. As if we are locked into and the same as our masks.

    A insane defence system operates insanely by defending against Sanity. Because it is reverses the true order, it generates a world in which everything is backwards – under pretext of too big to fail. That is – the corruption is of such a pervasive and systemic order (being the mind-currency in which the many think to know or understand) – that anything threatening true open exposure is made enemy, invalidated, smeared, ignored, killed.

    Along with Jesus, I see a false foundation splitting our mind – with a narrative identity trying to put Humpty together again – as if to make one power over conflicting parts. This lack of foundation cannot be recognized by anyone seeking to prevail or survive in its framing. Nor can a better one be added or grafted over the false but that it becomes a wishful masking over the false.

    So when all else falls or fails – an eternal presence abides as it always is – but without a diversionary tactic of mind in focus of conflicted identity operating to hide it in plain sight. Thus, breaking allegiance with the masking mind in self-image meets the a tempting of mind to bait with conflicts so as to ‘protect’ from waking up. Can the mind be retrained? Yes – but not by itself. New channels of thought and action operate a the reintegration to the creative presence – that a false sense of ‘control’ deprive us of conscious appreciation – while locking into negative or fear fuelled ‘mis-creations’. Regardless they seem relatively ‘moral’ or fair within a negatively defined society and economy.

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    • writerroddis says

      Insofar as I understand this at all, binra, it reminds me of the more obscure end of ‘spiritual’ thinking – a less accessible version of Eckhart Tolle’s ideas on “The Power of Now”. I have some sympathy with the proposition that most of us spend way too much time neurotically dwelling on wrongs done to/by us in the past – a focus that takes us away from the present and stops us being, to use a currently fashionable term, mindful. “Freedom”, as one now discredited guru used to say, “has no history”. But such ideas, limited even on the personal level, are risible when the focus shifts from individual to socio-political circumstances stripped of class and the very real movement of history.

      Or do I misunderstand you? Your words look like English but perhaps I’m deceived on that small point.

      Liked by 2 people

      • I primarily rejected the article’s use of the phrase ‘eternal present’ in context of manipulative deceit. Such reversal or inversion of consciousness is an act of focus and desire within consciousness. A world where ‘everything is backwards’ – and destructively so – is perhaps a cause to pause from reaction so as (indeed) to be mindful of what is in fact running (in your name) as thought, belief and accepted definition – currently. (For there is NO other point of observation and responsibility for what you consent to accept true of you). When this quality of truly conscious presence grows the nature of what is beheld is recognisable in being and not simply parsed as thinking or conceptual comparisons and associations.

        I see the release of mind-driven identity-politik as the natural alignment in and of being,em> – which is never a defined image or concept – but rather the quality or nature of the recognition and acceptance of Life as being rather than life as grasped, manipulated or substituted for.

        Note that when ‘positive’ idols for Life fail – as they must – the symbols of evil in hate and fear are invoked as the compulsion to identify against so as to get an identity in self-righteous’ comparison while running hate.

        A self-perpetuating denial of the present by a conditioned narrative ‘mind’ in reaction – running in place of the felt synchronicity of relational communication, plays out its ‘conflictedness’ as the device by which to NOT know – as the desire and ability to mask in and hide from a feared and hated sense of conflicted reality.

        This defence persists as a subconscious default ‘choice’ as a sense of self-preservation or survival – and runs beneath a surface masking of dissociation and displacement. A false witness was first used to direct blame and pain away and WANT it laid upon another. This set deceit as the basis for manipulating or usurping power in the world – where power is got from another’s loss.

        False assertions frame our acting from such definitions of the past in word and deed, so as to shape the present to unfold a future in which a state of darkness and division is persisted in – within which all the parts play apart – and unified purpose (joy in being) is usurped by uniting against the feared – not least in displacements

        Consciousness of time takes different qualities. If one attention is fragmented and effectively diverted in distraction ‘all the time’ then events drive consciousness as a reactive conditioned response according to the specific forms of its conditioning.
        The use of this device of diversion and distraction is evident enough in our world. Why would you be surprised to find it operates under a personal sense of ‘narrative identity control’?

        The fragmenting of mind to personae operating over denied conflict or trauma is known and used for ‘mind-control’ because it is the basis or means of setting up mind as a control or filtered and distorted construct. While such as the CIA’s ‘MKUltra’ was at the extreme end, the same operates via social ‘engineering’ via the use of terror, fear, threat, calamity to set up or strengthen protection rackets or manipulative deceits by which to render powerless. Indeed to a significant extent the fear-conditioned become the demand to be provided with a sense of protective identity that drives the ‘market’ for unconsciousness.

        The falsification of history is part of the falsification of our own mind. But the recognition of an insanity is the dawning of sanity and the opening of a quality of conscious choice in place of conditioned reactions under the belief one is free. So there is a place for the suspension of anything to run as true – until it is felt or discerned true. This may bring a sense of ‘not knowing yet’ – but held within a desire to know – as a self-honesty and not as a mask-reinforcing identity.

        The belief one already knows, operates as ‘no call or need to look’. This runs unconscious of its own life and being as a mind-capture. The complexity of a fragmented entanglement in deceit runs as if a self-evident reality – designed NOT to allow recognition of its own nakedness.

        When the science (or history) is stated as ‘settled!’ and beyond debate or revisiting – we could know there is none – but rather a phishing narrative device enacting an identity theft. To NOT take the bait is to open the willingness for a truer alignment in being. Hence the triggering of ‘persecutions’ that seek to undermine disobedience and bring back into the ‘world order’.

        Everyone’s experience is valid as experience from which to grow and be transformed. But the invalidation of ‘others’ is an attempt to get personal validity within a belief one does not already have it. This is false currency of deceit. Such MUST look outside themselves for completion as they define it and – fear to look within – for they invested everything in a fear of loss – as if to get or keep for themselves alone and apart.

        To go forth and multiply a sense of lack is to generate an abundance of lack, fear, guilt, hate, debt, and powerlessness. It isn’t Consciousness that ‘does this to its Own’ but the Idea we each and together give focus to – and live out from. Thus it is not humanity that is corrupt – but the idea of humanity we accept and run with as true. Once others are designated worthless, invalid, sub-human – we lose our own humanity. This may not seem like a clear choice – but its cost will cut more clearly that it is a choice when a sense of self-specialness no longer finds any support.

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        • Of course – be the freedom to alight in – or not – as your resonance and relevance uncover. It cannot be possible to communicate to another anything they are not already of a willingness to know. Nor would I seek to persuade anyone, anything they do not recognize and find value in.

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