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09.24 Unlocking secrets of sea level rise in Greenland [15 minute video]
09.24 What are public lands?
09.24 Americans: the next climate migrants 'We're moving to higher ground': America's era of climate mass migration is here [estimates do not include immigrants from other nations similarly affected]
09.24 Opec predicts massive rise in oil production over next five years [wonderful for fossil fuel investors; terrible for all plants and animals]
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09.24 Brett Kavanaugh faces second allegation of sexual misconduct09.23 MARYLAND GOVERNOR REBUFFS CALL FOR CRIMINAL INVESTIGATION INTO BRETT KAVANAUGH ATTEMPTED RAPE ALLEGATIONS [Republicans above the law...]
09.19 'Killing a generation': one million more children at risk from famine in Yemen [Does America's government have empathy? Does it understand the concept of morality? The Saudi Air Force would be ineffective without U.S. military assistance...]
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09.18 Racist rioting in Chemnitz has reopened Germany’s east-west split [After 10,000 generations, we are all mixed-race. So let's become friends with our cousins instead!]
ON WHO WE ARE...
Heart of Darkness: The Molten Core of Our Modern Madness
Sunday, 1 February 2009
Something momentous is happening over at "Once Upon a Time." Arthur Silber has at last begun his long-awaited series on "Tribalism": the deep-rooted, deep-rutted, largely unconscious mental-emotional structures that lock human beings into such horrifically destructive modes of behavior, on every level, from the most intimate and individual to the most public and universal.
"[In this work]...the lunacy of trying to fool the self is set aside at some point, salvation and the needs of mankind are prominent & hegemony takes a breathing spell."
-- Bob Dylan, liner notes, "World Gone Wrong"
The first two parts of the series (here and here) are up at his blog now, and both are marvelous, trenchant, and moving works. Here you will find that rarest of things: a human voice -- distinct, unique, authentic -- speaking to you directly, with integrity, of deeply meaningful things. Here you will find a dimension of depth that has few if any parallels in political commentary anywhere today. For while politics is the immediate context of Silber's visionary analysis, as he says, rightly:
These more fundamental concerns are the focus of Silber's "Tribalism" series. And the search for answers -- or at least more creative approaches -- to these concerns grows more urgent all the time, as years and decades of deceit -- and self-deceit -- compound our ignorance and error. I once put it this way, in something I wrote 18 years ago, in the run-up to the first Gulf War: "I think we are living in a world of lies; lies that don't even know they are lies, because they are the children and grandchildren of lies." Silber's new series show just how literally true that is. As he notes:
Silber's investigation promises to take us the very heart of our darkness -- to throw glimmers of light on possible exits from the shadows. It can't be, and shouldn't be, reduced to a few excerpts, so do yourself a favor and get over there to read the whole thing. There you will be challenged, enlightened, provoked, stirred -- made to think and feel. There, the lunacy of trying to fool the self -- a madness that fuels the ever-churning fires of hegemony -- is set aside, and the courage to face a world gone wrong, from the inside out, is on remarkable display.
Chris Floyd has been a writer and editor for more than 25 years, working in the United States, Great Britain and Russia for various newspapers, magazines, the U.S. government and Oxford University. Floyd co-founded the blog Empire Burlesque, and is also chief editor of Atlantic Free Press. He can be reached at email@example.com.
This column is republished here with the permission of the author.
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This story was published on February 2, 2009.
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