“What Orwell feared were those who would ban books. What Huxley feared was that there would be no reason to ban a book, for there would be no one who wanted to read one. Orwell feared those who would deprive us of information. Huxley feared those who would give us so much that we would be reduced to passivity and egotism. Orwell feared that the truth would be concealed from us. Huxley feared the truth would be drowned in a sea of irrelevance.”—Neil Postman (via samsaranmusing)
Ahead of us lay a few big crevasses that we could see from our tent, what looked like a remarkably steep climb up to the saddle of the Gateway, a short descent the other side and then the behemoth Beardmore lying in wait the other side.
“We will offer them our religion, our education, our life-ways, in order to help them achieve our level of civilization and thus raise them and all their white brothers up from their savage and unhappy state.”—
After Alcatraz Prison was decommissioned and listed as surplus federal property, Red Power activists occupied it in various configurations from 1969 to 1971. This is the proclamation they issued to the US Government.
“In a letter to the White House, 38 news organizations, which included McClatchy, protested: “Journalists are routinely being denied the right to photograph or videotape the president while he is performing his official duties.”—
David Lightman reporting at McClatchy. McClatchy won’t publish photos issued by White House
“Now what is particularly outrageous about the Wal-Mart business model is that the Walton family that owns Wal-Mart is the wealthiest family in this country … The six heirs of Sam Walton are worth about, I believe, over $100 billion. Which is more wealth than the bottom 40 percent of the American people, interestingly. And what is quite amazing is that one of the reasons this family has become so wealthy is that the taxpayers of the United States provide more welfare to the Walton family than any family in America. So that — when you have workers in Wal-Mart who in order to feed their families have got to go on food stamps, have got to go on Medicaid to get their healthcare, have got to live in government-subsidized affordable housing in order to have a roof over their heads — what that dynamic is, essentially, is that the United States, that the taxpayers of this country are in partnership with the Walton family. The Walton family makes all of the money – the wealthiest family in America – while the taxpayers have to subsidize the low-paid employees. And that to me is totally absurd.”—Bernie Sanders (via mattpayton)
“Fossilized corporations do their thing while frozen governments produce (or opt out of ) hapless and toothless international agreements. By default, initiative must arise elsewhere — in places where reason and passion have some purchase as well as a tradition, places where new power may be created and deployed. This counterpower is, in fact, developing.”—
Todd Gitlin at Tom Dispatch. How to Reverse a Slow-Motion Apocalypse
Why the Divestment Movement Against Big Energy Matters
Louis Helbig has been documenting flooded villages and industrial structures losted to the water along the artificially engineered St. Lawrence Seaway, a borderland hydrological project smack in the international margin between Canada and the United States.
“The book I borrowed, In the Footsteps of Scott by Roger Mear and Robert Swan, went on to have a bit of an impact on me. As a boy I loved stories of adventure and exploration, of mountains, oceans, jungles, deserts and space, and this one had a photograph of a man dragging a sled in Antarctica on its front. Under the clear plastic cover the library had added, the sky was an incredible shade of blue. I think part of me was sifting through these stories looking for clues about what it meant to be a man. I don’t know if Robert realised quite where the echoes or ripples of his story - and it’s a fantastic story of endeavour and challenge, of victory and loss - would reach, decades after the telling, but here I am now lying in a tent on the Ross Ice Shelf, camped a few miles away from where he and his team would have camped in the mid-eighties.”—Ripples, Circles (Day 24) | Blog | The Scott Expedition
“Life is going to present to you a series of transformations. And the point of education should be to transform you. To teach you how to be transformed so you can ride the waves as they come. But today, the point of education is not education. It’s accreditation. The more accreditation you have, the more money you make. That’s the instrumental logic of neoliberalism. And this instrumental logic comes wrapped in an envelope of fear. And my Ivy League, my MIT students are the same. All I feel coming off of my students is fear. That if you slip up in school, if you get one bad grade, if you make one fucking mistake, the great train of wealth will leave you behind. And that’s the logic of accreditation. If you’re at Yale, you’re in the smartest 1% in the world. […] And the brightest students in the world are learning in fear. I feel it rolling off of you in waves. But you can’t learn when you’re afraid. You cannot be transformed when you are afraid.”— Junot Díaz, speaking at Yale (via malinche)
The Senate Intelligence Committee apparently just voted on Dianne Feinstein’s fake NSA reform bill, which actually legalizes all of the illegal spying and adds a few new ways for the government to spy on everyone. … The overall bill passed out of committee 11-4, with Senators Wyden, Udall, Heinrich and Coburn voting against it.
Hyperreality is a term used in semiotics and postmodern philosophy to describe an inability of consciousness to distinguish reality from a simulation of reality, especially in technologically advanced post-modern societies. Hyperreality is seen as a condition in which what is real and what is fiction are seamlessly blended together so that there is no clear distinction between where one ends and the other begins. It allows the commingling of physical reality with virtual reality (VR) and human intelligence with artificial intelligence (AI). Individuals may find themselves for different reasons, more in tune or involved with the hyperreal world and less with the physical real world. Some famous theorists of hyperreality include Jean Baudrillard, Albert Borgmann, Daniel J. Boorstin, Neil Postman, and Umberto Eco.