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‘The Middle’ Doesn’t Always Equal ‘True’

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  • The assumption that truth always lies somewhere in “the middle” is actually a logical fallacy called the “middle ground fallacy.”
  • Related: How America Lost Its Mind

 

Daniel Lattier, Intellectual Takeout

May 23, 2017 | We live in an age in which our media frequently frames issues up as a choice between two extremes.

In such an age, it’s tempting for those who consider themselves educated to consistently take the via media—the “middle way”—and to assume that the truth always amounts to a balanced compromise between the two sides of a debate. In such an age, it becomes cool to be a centrist.

http://www.intellectualtakeout.org/sites/ito/files/styles/medium/public/dan.jpg?itok=k0Nk_o0- Daniel Lattier is the Vice President of Intellectual Takeout. He received his B.A. in Philosophy and Catholic Studies from the University of St. Thomas (MN), and his M.A. and Ph.D. in Systematic Theology from Duquesne University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

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How America Lost Its Mind, Kurt Andersen, The Atlantic 

https://cdn.theatlantic.com/assets/media/img/2017/07/WEL_Andersen_Opener/lead_960.jpg?1501100297R. Kikuo Johnson

  • The nation’s current post-truth moment is the ultimate expression of mind-sets that have made America exceptional throughout its history.
  • This article has been adapted from Kurt Andersen’s book Fantasyland: How America Went Haywire—A 500-Year History, to be published in September by Random House.
  • Related: America's Embrace of Willful Ignorance

Our Information Society is Not Yielding More Knowledge, Especially in Politics

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  • Part 1: Our Information Society is Not Yielding More Knowledge
    • Is it possible that some of these problems would be solved by a greater intellectual humility?
  • Part 2: Trump's Maniacal U.N. Address Has Set America on a Course with Cataclysm
    • The president announced to the world this week that the U.S. is a rogue state.
  • Related: How America Lost Its Mind

Compiled by David Culver, Ed., Evergreene Digest 

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Part 1: Our Information Society is Not Yielding More Knowledge

  • As a nation, would we be wise to take a step back, recognize that the information society does not necessarily equal knowledge, and then be willing to take the time to ground ourselves and our children in the practice of drilling deep and thoughtfully processing what we learn, instead of being satisfied with knowledge an inch deep and a mile wide?
  • Is it possible that some of these problems would be solved by a greater intellectual humility?

Annie Holmquist, Intellectual Takeout

August 18, 2017 | In today’s world, modern celebrities and artists seem to be primarily concerned with their image and whether or not it is aligned with the politically correct thought of the day. It is for this reason that it’s easy to sit up and take note when a celebrity actually goes against the grain of today’s conventional wisdom and thoughtfully points out problems that are being overlooked.

The most recent instance of this came from the lips of Charles Dutoit, a famous Swiss conductor who heads the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra.   

Speaking with The Telegraph, Dutoit explains that his illustrious career did not start with a bang. Instead, he worked his way through the ranks slowly, taking time to observe the greats and let their advice sink in and marinate in his own thoughts and practices. Such a process, he implies, is what made him one of the world’s greatest conductors.

http://www.intellectualtakeout.org/sites/ito/files/styles/medium/public/annie.jpg?itok=sMaFStUo Annie Holmquist is a senior writer with Intellectual Takeout. In her role, she assists with website content production and social media messaging.  

Full story … 



Part 2: Trump's Maniacal U.N. Address Has Set America on a Course with Cataclysm

The president announced to the world this week that the U.S. is a rogue state.

Jefferson Morley, AlterNet

https://www.alternet.org/sites/default/files/styles/story_image/public/story_images/screen_shot_2017-09-20_at_11.13.25_am.png?itok=5NKOrNMHSeptember 20, 2017 | For a red-state campaign rally, President Trump’s speech to the United Nations was a stirring package of moralistic rhetoric, nationalistic posturing and self-righteous rage.

For a meeting of international leaders, the president’s address was a garbage can of ideological arrogance, cultural contempt and political shortsightedness.

Jefferson Morley is AlterNet's Washington correspondent. He is the author of the forthcoming biography The Ghost: The Secret Life of CIA Spymaster James Jesus Angleton (St. Martin's Press, October 2017) and Snow-Storm in August: Washington City, Francis Scott Key and the Forgotten Race Riot of 1835.

Full story … 

Related:

How America Lost Its Mind, Kurt Andersen, The Atlantic

https://cdn.theatlantic.com/assets/media/img/2017/07/WEL_Andersen_Opener/lead_960.jpg?1501100297R. Kikuo Johnson

  • The nation’s current post-truth moment is the ultimate expression of mind-sets that have made America exceptional throughout its history.
  • This article has been adapted from Kurt Andersen’s book Fantasyland: How America Went Haywire—A 500-Year History, to be published in September by Random House.
  • Related: America's Embrace of Willful Ignorance

The Real Flag Outrage? When Bigots And Liars Hide Behind Stars And Stripes

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Photo by Jake Ingle on Unsplash

  • As for the American flag, the Stars and Stripes; the Red, White & Blue: it is only a symbol of patriotism if it is waved by people who are true patriots: people committed to the welcoming, inclusionary, open-hearted, non-discriminatory, freedom-for-all theme at the heart of this country’s identity.
  • I don't get all choked up about yellow ribbons and American flags. I consider them to be symbols and I leave symbols to the symbol minded. George Carlin.
  • Related: No Two Sides about It, Mike Pence. Confederate Statues Must Come Down, But Not For the Reason You Think.

Lorraine Devon Wilke, HuffPost 

09/27/2017 | The flag, the Bible, the cross, the ring, the badge, the collar... we are a country rife with symbols, literally wrapped and weighted with the pomp and pageantry of the many things we’ve chosen to identify our beliefs, our memberships and positions.

These symbols are designed to represent ideals, signify philosophies, advertise status, be unspoken statements. Those who wear, bandy, raise and wield them do so because they wish for their memberships, their affiliations, their support of the symbolized groups or ideals to be known.

https://img.huffingtonpost.com/asset/579b95b02a000013004f74c1.jpg?ops=100_100 Lorraine Devon Wilke, Contributor, Sass & Sensibility:  Author, artist, and cultural commentator, Lorraine Devon Wilke, shares her unique take on everything from the inflamed landscape of politics and evolving social mores, to the ever-changing influence of media, entertainment, and art.

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No Two Sides about It, Mike Pence. Confederate Statues Must Come Down, But Not For the Reason You Think, Compiled by David Culver, Ed., Evergreene Digest 

  • Part 1: No Two Sides about It, Confederate Statues Must Come Down.
  • The whitewashed compromise that brought the nation together after the Civil War was based on a deliberate forgetting of the truth
  • Part 2: Mike Pence’s defense of Confederate memorials is actually really scary.
  • Mike Pence says we shouldn't try to erase our history. He's right, but not for the reason that he thinks he is.

Propaganda, Human Consciousness, And The Future Of Civilization

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  • A duck floats past two fish, looks down and says “Morning boys! How’s the water?” The fish swim on for a bit, then one of them turns to the other and says, “What the fuck is water?”
  • Whenever the mass media converge unanimously upon a single narrative, your default assumption should be that you are being propagandized. --Caitlin Johnstone
  • Related: How America Lost Its Mind

Caitlin Johnstone, The Greanville Post

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http://www.globalresearch.ca/wp-content/uploads/2015/01/under-newspaper.jpgAugust 26, 2017 | Corporatist propaganda is to western civilization what water is to fish. Our culture is saturated in it; it informs so many levels of our worldview and most of us never even examine any of them. It informs all aspects of culture, from our beliefs about what’s going on in the world to our understanding of history to what issues we think we’re supposed to care about on a given day to what opinions we think we’re allowed to choose from. People think they know what’s going on in their society, why their country fought this or that war, how their nation’s government and economy operate, when really they don’t know any of those things. All their most basic assumptions about their world, their culture, and even who they are as individuals is fully pervaded by mass media propaganda narratives.

In early tribal cultures, humans depended on campfire stories passed on from one generation to the next to tell them what the world is and how to interpret their experiences in it. Now that role has fallen exclusively to a few highly consolidated corporate media conglomerates whose billionaire owners have a vested interest in maintaining the warmongering plutocratic power establishment that is loosely centralized in the United States, because in that power establishment they get to live as kings.

http://www.greanvillepost.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/05/caitlinJohnstone-face234-303x300.jpgCaitlin Johnstone is a brave journalist, political junkie, relentless feminist, champion of the 99 percent. And a powerful counter-propaganda tactician. 

Full story … 

Related:

How America Lost Its Mind, Kurt Andersen, The Atlantic

https://cdn.theatlantic.com/assets/media/img/2017/07/WEL_Andersen_Opener/lead_960.jpg?1501100297 R. Kikuo Johnson

The nation’s current post-truth moment is the ultimate expression of mind-sets that have made America exceptional throughout its history.

This article has been adapted from Kurt Andersen’s book Fantasyland: How America Went Haywire—A 500-Year History, to be published in September by Random House.
Related: America's Embrace of Willful Ignorance

 

http://www.globalresearch.ca/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/Fake-News-400x255.jpgHelp enlighten your fellows. Be sure to pass this on to friends and kin. We must break the system's  ability to lie with impunity.

 

 

 

Why Berkeley’s Battle Against White Supremacy Is Not About Free Speech

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UC Berkeley faculty members shared conflicting viewpoints on issues of hate speech and white supremacy Friday at a panel on free speech hosted by Chancellor Carol Christ. Yukun Zhang / Staff

The clashes between the alt-right and antifascist protesters at Berkeley cannot be taken out of the context of the climate of terror that has been brewing since white-nationalist and Nazi flyers began to appear at over 100 college campuses across the country after the election of Donald Trump.

Meleiza Figueroa and David Palumbo-Liu, Liberty Tree Foundation in Asheville (NC) Progressive

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Despite (and in reaction to) all the hate, fear and bluster emanating from the White House, there are powerful movements building across the country.

Evergreene Digest has doubled down to give voice to those fighting for a better world. We've worked tirelessly to bring the movement to you. But in order to continue publishing in-depth, thoughtful coverage of local and national efforts to disrupt the status quo, we need your help. Because Evergreene Digest is funded  entirely by readers, the success of our fundraising campaign is critical to our future: Can you take a moment to get us closer to our goal? <>

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September 10, 2017 | Outrage at the murder of Heather Heyer in Charlottesville and wanton attacks on peaceful students, clergy, and people of color at the hands of white supremacists kicked off nationwide protests against racist violence, which led to the cancellation of dozens of right-wing rallies and the fall of Confederate monuments from Durham to San Diego. There is much hope in the undeniable public support to resist the so-called alt-right. Yet confrontations at the University of California, Berkeley, have polarized activists on how best to oppose these movements of hate and bigotry.


On August 27, several thousand Bay Area students, teachers, and community members attended the “Rally Against Hate,” which was organized by an unprecedented coalition of over 100 campus, labor, interfaith, community justice, and socialist/anarchist groups. Despite the mostly peaceful character of the demonstration, the media focused overwhelmingly on a few instances of violent skirmishes, painting Berkeley as a hotbed of far-left extremism.

Meleiza Figueroa, Liberty Trees's newest fellow, worked as the Press Director for the Stein/Baraka 2016 Presidential campaign and is Executive Producer of the Green News Network.
David Palumbo-Liu is the Louise Hewlett Nixon Professor, and Professor of Comparative Literature, at Stanford University.  He is also the founding editor of the e-journal, Occasion: Interdisciplinary Studies in the Humanities and a Contributing Editor for The Los Angeles Review of Books.

Full story … 

How America Lost Its Mind

https://cdn.theatlantic.com/assets/media/img/2017/07/WEL_Andersen_Opener/lead_960.jpg?1501100297R. Kikuo Johnson

  • The nation’s current post-truth moment is the ultimate expression of mind-sets that have made America exceptional throughout its history.
  • This article has been adapted from Kurt Andersen’s book Fantasyland: How America Went Haywire—A 500-Year History, to be published in September by Random House.
  • Related: America's Embrace of Willful Ignorance

Kurt Andersen, The Atlantic

September,  2017 |

“You are entitled to your own opinion,
but you are not entitled to your own facts.”
— Daniel Patrick Moynihan

“We risk being the first people in history to have been
able to make their illusions so vivid, so persuasive,
so ‘realistic’ that they can live in them.”
— Daniel J. Boorstin, The Image: A Guide to
Pseudo-Events in America (1961)

When did America become untethered from reality?

Kurt Andersen is the host and co-creator of Studio 360.

Full story … 

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America's Embrace of Willful Ignorance, Lenore Daniels, OpEdNews

  • http://evergreenedigest.org/sites/default/files/Classical%20Statue%20Head%20in%20Hand_1.jpgThese new great men are great because of what makes them similar to the mass --a kind of crude common sense, brutality, and lack of culture. The handling of affairs may make then admirably cunning and remarkably good at the practice of politics. But to maintain their prestige and power, they must also maintain their lack of culture and brutality. They must remain primitives. --Jean Guehenno, Diary of the Dark Years, 1940-1944: Collaboration, Resistance, and Daily Life in Occupied Paris
  • Related: White America's Greatest Delusion: "They Do Not Know It and They Do Not Want to Know It"

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The Greatest Story Too Rarely Told: America Is an Oligarchy

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"We’ve been accepting an unacceptable level of insanity in our national body politic for decades now," says Atcheson. (Photo: Education Images / Getty)

  • We live in a nation controlled by corporate power and the individually wealthy. And the major press, of course, is in on the con.
  • Related: Fools and hucksters are governing this country based on Ronald Reagan lies.

John Atcheson, Common Dreams>

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http://www.globalresearch.ca/wp-content/uploads/2015/04/propaganda-lies.png Thursday, July 13, 2017 | OK.  Enough.  It’s time to quit being “balanced” or “non-partisan” or whatever other euphemism the elite establishment media uses to justify ignoring the two biggest elephants in our national living room.

After Trump was elected there was a lot of concern about allowing his idiocy to become the “new normal.” But in truth, we’ve been accepting an unacceptable level of insanity in our national body politic for decades now.

https://www.commondreams.org/sites/default/files/styles/cd_bio_small/public/authors/atcheson.jpg?itok=E3GxkkJ2John Atcheson is author of the novel, A Being Darkly Wise, and he has just completed a book on the 2016 elections, tentatively titled, WTF America? How the US Went Off the Rails and How to Get It Back on Track.

Full story … 

Related: 

Fools and hucksters are governing this country based on Ronald Reagan lies, Compiled by David Culver, Ed., Evergreene Digest  

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  • Part 1: Fools and hucksters are governing this country

Their very presence in the White House is a daily debasement of the values and traditions that once made America great.

  • Part 2: Ending the Ronald Reagan lie

A small group of wealthy interests has hijacked the federal government, driving policies that are strongly against public opinion and the public good.

  • Related: A Definitive Guide to the G.O.P. Insiders Enabling Donald Trump

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Series | Outclassed: Part 1: Why do we think poor people are poor because of their own bad choices?

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‘ Among the wealthy, biases allow society’s winners to believe that they got where they are by hard work alone’. Illustration: Rosie Roberts

  • If an unexpected medical emergency bankrupts you, you view yourself as a victim of bad fortune – while seeing other bankruptcy court clients as spendthrifts. Why?
  • Outclassed: The Secret Life of Inequality is our new series about class. This installment is Part 1. 
  • Related: Kurt Vonnegut Ponders Why “Poor Americans Are Taught to Hate Themselves” in a Timely Passage from Slaughterhouse-Five

Maia Szalavitz, Guardian

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https://cdn.theatlantic.com/assets/media/img/mt/2016/11/ij_banner/lead_960.jpg?1480521355Wednesday, 5 July, 2017 | Cecilia Mo thought she knew all about growing up poor when she began teaching at Thomas Jefferson senior high school in south Los Angeles. As a child, she remembered standing in line, holding a free lunch ticket. But it turned out that Mo could still be shocked by poverty and violence – especially after a 13-year-old student called her in obvious panic. He had just seen his cousin get shot in his front yard.

For Mo, hard work and a good education took her to Harvard and Stanford. But when she saw just how much chaos and violence her LA students faced, she recognized how lucky she had been growing up with educated parents and a safe, if financially stretched, home.

https://i.guim.co.uk/img/uploads/2017/05/26/Maia-Szalavitz.jpg?w=140&h=140&q=55&auto=format&usm=12&fit=max&s=640caefbc099a7fde21144d984959c18 Maia Szalavitz is the author of Unbroken Brain:  A Revolutionary New Way of Understanding Addiction, which will be published in April. She is a 2015-16 Soros Justice Fellow and has covered addiction and neuroscience for major publications for nearly 30 years.

Full story … 

Related:

Kurt Vonnegut Ponders Why “Poor Americans Are Taught to Hate Themselves” in a Timely Passage from Slaughterhouse-Five, Josh Jones, Open Culture 

http://cdn8.openculture.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/07/17225426/vonnegut-drawing.png Image by Daniele Prati, via Flickr Commons

  • For all his (Campbell's) outlandish presentation, he is a complicated figure---something of an amalgam of the far right’s showmen and hucksters and its cynical intellectuals, who often understand very well how the stark divisions of race and class are maintained in the U.S., and exploit that knowledge for political gain.
  • Related: From the Archives | Noam Chomsky: America Hates Its Poor

 

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