|1st Mvmt:||LAWCAP’s Intelligence Police|
|2nd Mvmt:||The CIA’s Heritage of Stone|
|3rd Mvmt:||Jim Garrison’s Heritage of Stone|
|4th Mvmt:||Shifting from Domination to Partnership|
The day may come when time seems to hang suspended, when weeds cover our deserted streets and when the only sound is the arrogant squeak of the rat swarms, eager now for their turn at evolution. Someone from a distant place, searching through our artifacts, may chance upon a human skull. Perhaps he will pick it up, looking through the goggled sockets at the dusty hollow where a handful of gray tissue once took the measure of the universe.
“Alas, poor man,” he might say. “A fellow of most infinite jest, of most excellent fancy. Where are your gibbets now? Your thumbscrews and your gallows? Your treasured hates and your fond cruelties?
“What happened to your disinterested millions? Your uncommitted and uninvolved, your preoccupied and bored? Where are their private horizons and their mirrored worlds of self? Where is their splendid indifference today?
“Now you can be silent forever.”—Jim Garrison, A Heritage of Stone (1970)“The transnationally operating LAWCAP in the early ’50s resurrected the twenty-year-dead FINCAP and its “capitalist” world and left only its American-flag-flying storefronts in the U.S.A. to cover its comprehensive financial withdrawal from the U.S.A. LAWCAP silently and invisibly moved capitalism’s big-time operations into the any-legally-propitious-elsewhere. With its invisibly operating CIA (Capitalism’s Invisible Army) LAWCAP exploited the unwitting citizens of the U.S.A. in order—they hoped—to destroy socialism.”—Buckminster Fuller, Critical Path (1981)“Cultures are human creations, and you can play a role in accelerating the shift from domination to partnership worldwide. Let us break out of the domination trance that makes insensitivity, violence, and cruelty seem inevitable, and use our enormous capacities for creativity—as well as for consciousness and caring—to build the missing foundations for that more peaceful and equitable partnership future we so want and need—for ourselves, our children, and generations to come.”—Riane Eisler, “Breaking Out of the Domination Trance” (2018)“eXtinction Rebellion goes against all the rules. It’s a nonviolent direct action movement that says we are in danger of going extinct. And we are already sending many other species extinct at a colossal rate. We need to rebel against this. Any government which is committing us to possible extinction and exterminating ecosystems right, left, and center, is not a legitimate government. We don’t have to obey its rules anymore. We can nonviolently rebel against it.”—Rupert Read, The Ethics of Climate Change (2019)
⇑ 1st Mvmt: LAWCAP’s Intelligence Police
Earlier this year David Korten wrote “Economic power is—and always has been—the foundation of political power. Those who control the peoples’ means of living rule.” Understanding how current centers of power in our world actually operate and function is critical to the survival and further evolution of all biologically complex life forms on Mother Earth. It is eminently possible to acquire this knowledge. However, as E. Martin Schotz has observed, “Knowledge is not something which everyone wants. It is difficult to acquire, and in order to know, one must have a desire to know. In turn, one’s desire to know depends on social attitudes and social activity. To acquire knowledge one must go through the laborious process of digesting the work of others and make it one’s own. The process of acquiring knowledge has no true beginning. As with life one enters in the middle of the process and must attempt to go back and pick up what has been worked out historically while at the same time carrying the process forward.”
This is an invitation, in part, to examine some of the psychological influences exerted on our experience of collective reality by what are euphemistically termed U.S. “intelligence” agencies. Webster’s defines euphemism as “the substitution of an agreeable or inoffensive expression for one that may offend or suggest something unpleasant.” George Orwell’s “Politics and the English Language,” (1946) lays bare how 70-plus years on, defence of the indefensible is all too common “coin of the realm” for obfuscating reality.
One hundred years ago words employed to describe reality, as George Carlin noted, employed more “[s]imple, honest, direct language.” Take today’s “Department of Defense.” A century ago it was called the War Department, a more accurate name for its purpose and operations. In 1917 the War Department authorized the creation of the Corps of Intelligence Police; honest and clear in deed. After World War Two the War Department was transformed into a Department of Defense through the National Security Act of 1947, which laid the foundations for a national security state, including creating the Central Intelligence Agency. The brainchild of Wall Street bankers like Allen Welsh Dulles, the CIA was established to ensure and further the control of U.S. Corporate Empire State interests of what are deemed “resources” for the benefit of the few over that of all Life on Mother Earth. Today, what is euphemistically called the U.S. Intelligence Community is, in reality, more accurately pegged as our Intelligence Police; “our” because the U.S. narrative is based on the premise that this is a government of, by, and for the people. In real terms, the IP’s primary purpose is to increase the financial profits—read economic and political power and influence—of the lords of capitalism, superseding all other needs and considerations.
In our time, political speech and writing are largely the defence of the indefensible. Things like the continuance of British rule in India, the Russian purges and deportations, the dropping of the atom bombs on Japan, can indeed be defended, but only by arguments which are too brutal for most people to face, and which do not square with the professed aims of the political parties. Thus political language has to consist largely of euphemism, question-begging and sheer cloudy vagueness. Defenceless villages are bombarded from the air, the inhabitants driven out into the countryside, the cattle machine-gunned, the huts set on fire with incendiary bullets: this is called pacification. Millions of peasants are robbed of their farms and sent trudging along the roads with no more than they can carry: this is called transfer of population or rectification of frontiers. People are imprisoned for years without trial, or shot in the back of the neck or sent to die of scurvy in Arctic lumber camps: this is called elimination of unreliable elements. Such phraseology is needed if one wants to name things without calling up mental pictures of them.
An unparalleled visionary, Buckminster Fuller saw himself in service to humanity as a “comprehensivist” and “generalist.” In Critical Path (1981), Fuller explains his derivation of lawyer capitalism and “its invisibly operating CIA”:
One of my earliest books was Nine Chains to the Moon, written in 1935 ... In it I referred so frequently to Finance Capitalism that I developed a contraction of those two words into FINCAP. FINCAP had died a lingering death between 1929 and 1934. In this book ... I refer so often to the lawyer-resurrected “capitalism” that it is appropriate to refer henceforth to LAWCAP. LAWCAP’s “capitalism” is paradoxically the most highly socialized organization in all history—the citizens of LAWCAP’s welfare-state—the whole body of corporate stockholders—having an annual average dole of $100,000 per capita without their even having to make a pretense of getting a job....
PHOTO: WERNER KRUTEINBuckminster Fuller
The transnationally operating LAWCAP in the early ’50s resurrected the twenty-year-dead FINCAP and its “capitalist” world and left only its American-flag-flying storefronts in the U.S.A. to cover its comprehensive financial withdrawal from the U.S.A. LAWCAP silently and invisibly moved capitalism’s big-time operations into the any-legally-propitious-elsewhere. With its invisibly operating CIA (Capitalism’s Invisible Army) LAWCAP exploited the unwitting citizens of the U.S.A. in order—they hoped—to destroy socialism.
The 1947-50 LAWCAP decision to start a World War III had two objectives: (1) to keep capitalism in business, and (2) to prevent the Russians from employing their industrial productivity to produce a higher standard of living for their own people than that demonstrated in the U.S.A. LAWCAP’s decision to start World War III inaugurated history’s greatest game of poker, with the U.S.S.R. as a very reluctant player, worried about its “home-folks” political agitation for a few “goodies.” It became a poker game that called for each side adding approximately $100 billion per year into the “killingry kitty.” They have now done so for thirty years. This amounts to $6 trillion....
Throughout those thirty years, the U.S.A.-half of this $6 trillion (that is, $3 trillion) was redeposited at various turnover rates per year in the Western-world banks, and the latter continually reloaned those dollars, at historically unprecedentedly high rates, to armaments industry. The net of it all was to convert science and technology’s highest capability into accomplishing the killing of ever more people at ever greater distances in ever shorter time. (pp. 114, 116).
The ultimate killing machine is, of course, nuclear weaponry. In my 1989 interview with Colonel Fletcher Prouty he discussed creating a Manichaean Devil to justify spending $6 trillion for a cold war. The lead-in to this was how the stated purpose of the Atomic Energy Commission, also created by the National Security Act, was to have the authority for developing and overseeing both nuclear weapons and power.
The other side of this situation, the Manichaean devil, is simply another way to talk about the Cold War. You can’t get Congress to appropriate money for an enormous war organization unless you can show a reason for it. We had to create the reason, we had to create this devil so we created Communism. Even the Soviets don’t understand the communism we think about; it goes so far beyond their model.... On the other side of it, if you create this devil, and he’s in every closet around the world, then you can justify having a 600-ship navy and a something-or-other wing air force, and an enormous army, because you keep telling the Congress and the American people that ‘My goodness, this great enormous devil is going to leap out of a closet any day at any time—the war could start here or could start there—we’ve got to be ready for the whole world.’ And that’s how you spend the money. Even though you can’t prove what you’re going to do with the money, you spend it.
Socialism, Communism, Terrorism, Radicalism; these terms have effectively been employed to drive U.S. policy via fear of an implacable, supremely evil enemy. Such a fear-based policy of rule and control is most effective when the history of events leading to the present can be manipulated and contrived by vastly ambitious individuals who enjoy and exert their influence and power by operating “off stage” as noted by Buckminster Fuller.
Finally, bigger ships got out of the Mediterranean and into the Atlantic, around Africa to the Orient, and then around the world. Thus, “those in the know” rediscovered that the world is a sphere and not an infinitely extended lateral plane. Great battles ensued—waged under the flags of England, France, and Spain—to determine who would become supreme master of the world’s high-seas line of supply. These great nations were simply the operating fronts of behind-the-scenes, vastly ambitious individuals who had become so effectively powerful because of their ability to remain invisible while operating behind the national scenery. Always their victories were in the name of some powerful sovereign-ruled country. The real power structures were always the invisible ones behind the visible sovereign powers. (Ibid, p. 72)
The beneficiaries of lawyer capitalism include vastly ambitious individuals who exercise great influence, financial wealth, and control by operating invisibly, outside the limelight. To successfully wield and extend such anonymous, unaccountable power, it is critical to direct, oversee, and control the narratives of seminal events shaping the fabric of reality-becoming-the-past. Such domination and oversight involves destroying, altering, and re-writing the records of major historical events where required to maintain the façade of government of, by, and for all the people. George Orwell wrote of Winston Smith’s repeating the Party slogan to Inner Party member O’Brien in 1984: “Who controls the past controls the future: who controls the present controls the past.” This highly effective algorithm for manipulating and managing perceptions of collective reality has been employed with ever greater sophistication by our Intelligence Police who perform their duties in service to the beneficiaries of LAWCAP. Guy Debord’s provocative and insightful critical analysis of the above algorithm is presented in his “Comments on the Society of the Spectacle” (1988).
II.In 1967, in a book entitled The Society of the Spectacle, I showed what the modern spectacle was already in essence: the autocratic reign of the market economy, which had acceded to an irresponsible sovereignty, and the totality of new techniques of government that accompanied this reign....VI.Spectacular domination’s first priority was to eradicate historical knowledge in general; beginning with just about all rational information and commentary on the most recent past.... With consummate skill the spectacle organizes ignorance of what is about to happen and, immediately afterwards, the forgetting of whatever has nonetheless been understood. The more important something is, the more it is hidden....VII.With the destruction of history, contemporary events themselves retreat into a remote and fabulous realm of unverifiable stories, uncheckable statistics, unlikely explanations and untenable reasoning.... All experts serve the state and the media and only in that way do they achieve their status. Every expert follows his master, for all former possibilities for independence have been gradually reduced to nil by present society’s mode of organization. The most useful expert, of course, is the one who can lie. With their different motives, those who need experts are falsifiers and fools. Whenever individuals lose the capacity to see things for themselves, the expert is there to offer an absolute reassurance....IX.Such a perfect democracy constructs its own inconceivable foe, terrorism. Its wish is to be judged by its enemies rather than by its results. The story of terrorism is written by the state and it is therefore highly instructive. The spectators must certainly never know everything about terrorism, but they must always know enough to convince them that, compared with terrorism, everything else must be acceptable, or in any case more rational and democratic.
The choice is always present to recover, reclaim, and promulgate the living history of our single, indivisible human family. The history of the life of our times belongs to all of us. It is the foundational record of our world and how it actually operates given what has occurred previously, leading up to this moment. Notwithstanding the invisible influence and power exerted by unaccountable “off stage actors,” it is possible to excavate, like archaeologists recovering the historical record of our epoch, what has been classified, buried, and stolen from us—and our descendants—and restore its continuity, factual basis, and lessons. The opportunity to go back, pick up what has been worked out historically while simultaneously carrying the process forward is always available for any and all to explore and contribute to.
⇑ 2nd Mvmt: The CIA’s Heritage of Stone
A striking feature of our culture includes the specific set of illusions presented by commercial print and broadcast media which promote a chimerical representation of reality through omission, distortion, lack of contextual analysis, and disinforming opinion stated as obvious, incontestable fact. It is always our choice what lens we adopt to view the world and our place in it. Jim Garrison’s 1970 book, A Heritage of Stone provides a rich source of our genuine history, free of the inhumanity and suffocating control exercised by national security state managers whose allegiance is to LAWCAP’s U.S. Corporate Empire State. In a truly democratic society, this work would be a primary high school textbook for students to understand how their world actually works given prior struggles by those dedicated to finding and establishing ways for all on Earth to live in peaceful coexistence.
As District Attorney of New Orleans, Jim Garrison was the only Law Enforcement Officer in the United States who had the conscience, sense of duty, and the courage to conduct a trial for the assassination of President John Kennedy. Regarding what he learned from 1967 to 1969, “my staff and I found ourselves on a collision course with the most powerful force in the country. The battle that followed over those three years exposed us to a part of America that we never dreamed existed. It became very clear to me that this was no longer the country that I had grown up in as a boy. It was a nation controlled by an enormous domestic intelligence organization which would seek to discredit or destroy anyone who dared challenge its authority.” (p. 19)
By the latter half of the 1960s, the immense, unaccountable power of Capitalism’s Invisible Army was revealing itself to the District Attorney of New Orleans’ investigation at virtually every turn. It is necessary to understand that the Intelligence Police encompasses the immense system of U.S. military intelligence as well as so-called civilian agencies such as the CIA. As we shall review, along with the CIA, the movers and shakers of the assassination of President Kennedy also included high level authorities within the Pentagon. This unchecked, invisible power and control stepped into the big time on November 22, 1963 and has grown exponentially since then to evermore nightmarish proportions far beyond the wildest fictional horror scenarios of good versus evil dished up by present day Hollywood’s commoditized “super hero blockbusters.” Consider this excerpt from John Kelly’s essay on “CRIMES AND SILENCE, The CIA’s Criminal Acts and the Media’s Silence” (2002) regarding how our so-called free press serves interests inimical to its claim of operating as a “fourth estate” to inform and educate people, including its staggering silence of criminal operations carried out in our name hundreds of times every day by our government.
As we speak, so to speak, or read, the CIA is committing hundreds of extremely serious crimes around the globe in our name and at our expense with nothing to show for it.... This is according to the CIA itself, as reported by the House Intelligence Committee. “The CS (Clandestine Service of the CIA), is the only part of the IC (Intelligence Community), indeed of the government, where hundreds of employees on a daily basis are directed to break extremely serious laws in countries around the world,” reads a committee staff study. “A safe estimate is that several hundred times every day (easily 100,000 times a year), DO (Directorate of Operations) officers engage in highly illegal activities.” [House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, IC 21: The Intelligence Community in the 21st Century (Washington, D.C.: GPO, 9 April 1996), 205. (page 220 in PDF)]
One would think the Cold War never ended.
The report was the first official admission and definition of CIA covert operations as crimes which the committee, without explanation, equated with essential national security operations. In other words, the national security of the United States requires that more than one hundred thousand extremely serious crimes be committed every year. The committee expressed no legal or ethical concerns about these crimes. On the contrary, CIA offenders were portrayed as potential, hapless victims of sinister foreign authorities opposed to their lawbreaking. “A typical 28 year-old, GS-11 case officer,” reads the study, “has numerous opportunities every week, by poor tradecraft or inattention, to embarrass his country and President and get agents imprisoned or executed.” [Ibid.]
One would think that one hundred thousand extremely serious crimes a year would be a major story no matter what the CIA’s rationale was. At the very least, pundits could have pondered and asked in the press how these crimes serve U.S. national security, particularly since the committee did not bother to do so. Nor did the committee explain the impact the crimes might have on peaceful, diplomatic relations or examine their moral and legal ramifications. In fact, the committee indicated that it did not matter that laws were broken because they were laws of other countries. To claim that our national security requires one hundred thousand crimes a year is a rather stark assertion and operating principle, particularly in a world that increasingly believes the United States acts as if there is one law for America and another for the rest of the world. Beyond that, it would seem that these crimes might actually threaten U.S. national security by making enemies. What nation is going to roll over, play dead, and accept that breaking its laws is axiomatic with U.S. national security?
There was not a single word about any of this even in the alternative press, which was particularly disturbing in light of the nature of the CIA crimes. The report suggested that the CIA’s crimes include murder and that “the targets of the CS [Clandestine Service] are increasingly international and transnational and a global presence is increasingly crucial to attack those targets.” [Ibid., p. 203 (page 218 in PDF)] In other words, we are not simply talking about stealing secrets. We are talking about the CIA committing crimes against humanity with de facto impunity and congressional sanctioning.
Other government documents, including CIA reports, show that the CIA’s crimes include terrorism, assassination, torture, and systematic violations of human rights. The documents also show that these crimes are part and parcel of deliberate CIA policy (the staff report notes that CIA personnel are “directed” to commit crimes)....
The House Intelligence Committee’s only concern regarding these brutal CIA informants and other CIA offenders was that they might be arrested and prosecuted. The committee did not advise the CIA to cease or even limit its lawlessness. In fact, it said that if the CIA stopped its criminal activities, “the taxpayer would be better off without a CS [Clandestine Service].” [Ibid., p. 205 (page 221 in PDF)] It explained neither this assertion nor how crimes protect national security. In response to the committee’s concern, the Senate Intelligence Committee proposed a bill that would immunize CIA offenders who violate treaties and international agreements while following orders. This is the Nazi rationale, plain and simple. The bill passed both houses of Congress and was signed into law by President Bill Clinton on December 27, 2000.
The law is Section 308 of the Intelligence Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2001. It provides that, “No Federal law enacted on or after the date of the enactment of the Intelligence Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2001 that implements a treaty or other international agreement shall be construed as making unlawful an otherwise lawful and authorized intelligence activity of the United States Government or its employees, or any other person to the extent such other person is carrying out such activity on behalf of, and at the direction of, the United States, unless such Federal law specifically addresses such intelligence activity.” [Public Law 106-567, 106th Congress, 114 Stat. 2843 (27 December 2000), Sec 308, Applicability to Lawful United States Intelligence Activities of Federal Laws Implementing International Treaties and Agreements.]
One has to stand back and take a deep breath on that one. Taken literally, it means that the Constitution does not apply to the CIA or any U.S. intelligence personnel, including lowly agent-assassins. Why? Because the Constitution provides that all treaties are the supreme law of the land. Not just the law, but the supreme law —and no exemptions.
While Section 308 applies to future agreements, if recent history is any indication, the CIA will apply it broadly and retroactively. This would mean exempting itself from all international law. The tragic consequence of such CIA license was seen in the April 2000 shootdown of a plane carrying American missionaries over Peru. The shootdown resulted in the deaths of Veronica Bowers and her seven-month-old daughter, and serious wounds to the pilot. In 1994, in violation of international law, Congress passed a law allowing the CIA to interdict civilian planes suspected as drug carriers and providing immunity from all liability, even for “mistakes.” The shootdown in Peru was a CIA-controlled operation. The Senate Intelligence Committee eventually blamed the CIA for it, but there were no repercussions or prosecutions. [Alan Sipress and Karen DeYoung, “CIA Failed to Identify Plane Downed in Peru,” Washington Post, 24 April 2001, pp. Al, A15.]
This analysis, published 17 years ago, raised vital and critical concerns and questions only more pertinent today given the severity of criminality being carried out hundreds of times a day by Capitalism’s Invisible Army in our name, and by our paying tribute through our taxes including:
Beyond the 1996 IC 21 report, the era of CIA criminality was ushered in and sanctioned with the June 18, 1948, National Security Council Directive NSC 10/2. Providing federal authorization for the euphemistic label “covert operations,” this directive empowered Capitalism’s Invisible Army to violate international law and established official lying, in the guise of “plausible denial,” as its operative cover. From Operation Gladio [†, ‡], a state-sponsored right-wing terrorist network in western Europe, to the Phoenix Program in Vietnam carrying out widespread torture, rape, and murder of civilians, to the support world-wide of Death Squads and other networks of terror, to U.S. and foreign political assassinations since 1945, to involvement in and complicity with the global heroin trade beginning in Europe after WWII [†] [‡] and the record of how it compromised the U.S. war on drugs, [†, ‡], the historical record recovered by independent authors and journalists is the significant and essential complement to the official 1996 U.S. government report. In The CIA As Organized Crime - How Illegal Operations Corrupt America and the World (2017), author Douglas Valentine catalogs essential history of transnational crime in the the name of national security. Some of this is touched upon in his 2017 interview, The CIA: 70 Years of Organized Crime.
Made famous by a 1939 recording of Billie Holliday, Strange Fruit is a searing song about the grim reality of white people lynching African Americans in the U.S. Originally written as a poem by Abel Meerpool titled Bitter Fruit, it was published in the January 1937 edition of the New York Teachers Union newspaper. A teacher, union activist, lyricist and screenwriter, Meerpol later set the poem to music and performed it with his wife, Laura Duncan, in New York City. During this, in writer Matthew Wills’ words, “depraved tradition of terror,” white U.S. Americans collectively accepted the systematic terror of African Americans being brutally murdered by white mobs beyond any legal authority. Now on the global stage and officially acknowledged for over 20 years, the CIA is “legally sanctioned” by the criminal policies of our illegitimate government to murder, terrorize, torture, and systematically violate the human rights of whole segments of our human family. The Bitter Fruit of the CIA’s Clandestine “Service” was and is not clandestine to the people who lost and continue losing their lives or who were subjected to and who continue being subjected to this depraved system of terror. Truly, the legacy of this criminality is a heritage of stone for untold numbers of people.
PHOTO: DOUGLAS VALENTINE
The documented record of the utterly and supremely unaccountable criminality of our Intelligence Police recovered by independent authors and journalists, including John Kelly’s depth and breadth critical analysis above, is a third rail that owners and publishers of monetized media will not touch. Why? Because, beginning in the latter half of the 1940s, our Intelligence Police have thoroughly infiltrated the fourth estate. A significant source regarding this co-optation is Carl Bernstein’s classic, “The CIA And The Media, How Americas Most Powerful News Media Worked Hand in Glove with the Central Intelligence Agency and Why the Church Committee Covered It Up,” (Rolling Stone, 20 Oct 1977) as well as a recent summary by James Tracy, “The CIA and the Media: 50 Facts the World Needs to Know,” (Global Research, Aug 2015).
⇑ 3rd Mvmt: Jim Garrison’s Heritage of Stone
By 1964, upon release of the Warren Report, “The Fix” was already in regarding commandeering U.S. media outlets to parrot the IP’s party line of a “random,” “senseless,” act of a “lone assassin” fairy tale for the extra-constitutional firing of the 35th President. By late 1963, the craft of deception as practiced by U.S. Intelligence Police, graduated to a supreme level of command whereby the actual authors of the crime released the carefully assembled cover story—notwithstanding such patently gross violations of fact as Newton’s second law of motion—to commercial press outlets within hours and days of the murder to hide the true sponsorship and operational control of the crime. However as Garrison pointed out in A Heritage of Stone, Chapter 2, Ornaments, if the assassination was the result of a lone drifter Marxist as the government proclaimed, why lock up all the sensitive evidence for a veritable lifetime?
The locking up of evidence until the year 2039 meant that anyone who was 21 when the assassination occurred would be allowed to examine the hidden material at the age of 96, assuming that he had managed to retain an active interest in the case. This generous concession to the right of the public to know the facts undoubtedly was made because, as would be explained by federal officials, there was no political motivation behind the President’s unfortunate demise. Since there are no political implications to his murder, all the evidence is going to be made available for you to examine—after seven decades.
Among the files locked away in the archives, where they could not be examined by the public, were the following: A CIA file concerning Oswald’s access to information about the U-2, a memo from the head of the CIA entitled “Lee Harvey Oswald,” a CIA file concerning dissemination of information on Oswald, a reproduction of the CIA official dossier on Oswald, a CIA file entitled “Information given to the Secret Service but not yet given to the Warren Commission,” a CIA file on the chronology of Oswald in Russia, a CIA file on the activity of Oswald in Mexico City, and a CIA file entitled “Information on Jack Ruby and associates.”
As a result of the federal investigation, a total of 51 such CIA files were locked away in the vaults in Washington. Many of the files were classified secret on the grounds that national security was involved. Was it not a curious circumstance that the assassination which had no politically-motivated meaning had connected with it so many files that could affect the security of the nation if made public?
If an assassination accomplished by an itinerant warehouse employee produced such precaution in protecting state secrets, would it not be interesting to speculate whether there could have been much greater secrecy if the President had been killed as the result of a conspiracy?... (pp. 33-4)
Americans were not yet aware that deception had become a craft in their country, that an intricate contrivance of men for the clandestine production of illusion had become not only a part of but also manipulator of America, its policies and its people.... Now it was possible in America not merely to accomplish the foulest murder but afterward to remove all stain and make it appear to have been something less: to make it seem the meaningless act of a loner, a capricious quirk of fate undeserving of too deep an inquiry. In time, the hidden machinery would casually kill other national leaders whose commitment to peace made them dangerous to men committed to war and secret manipulation of the populace.
Behind the stage magic and mocking deception, behind all the ornaments arranged to lure away the eye, massive power was drawn up in silent array to prevent any effective inquiry from disclosing the fact that America had become a warfare state where human sacrifice was practiced not only abroad but now also at home. (pp. 41-2)
A Heritage of Stone is a significant “time buoy” record of what had been assembled and established by the latter 1960s concerning how the Intelligence Police and high-ranking U.S. Military officers had manipulated events immediately following the President’s assassination to establish a pre-determined make-believe cover story before there was evidence to set forth any scenario, much less a fabrication of “no conspiracy”. The book cites Theodore White’s account in The Making of the President 1964 of Air Force One, returning to Washington from Dallas on the afternoon of 11-22-63: “On the flight the party learned that there was no conspiracy; learned of the identity of Oswald and his arrest”. Echoing John Kelly, “One has to stand back and take a deep breath on that one.”
Our invisible government begins and ends with deception. Perceiving this deception is the key to understanding how the assassination of President Kennedy was accomplished. Understanding the motivation for his assassination is the key to understanding what has happened to America....
The resourcefulness of modern operational intelligence should not be underestimated. Facts are turned into cobwebs in the minds of witnesses while things which never happened are structured into occurrences which can be cemented into history.
In the opening of the Acknowledgments Garrison states, “I am especially grateful to Vincent Salandria and Andrew Sciambra. Their help in our search for the facts about President Kennedy’s assassination covered a long period of time and took too many forms to begin to describe them here. Their help continued throughout my writing of this book. I could not have accomplished it without them.” A lawyer from Philadelphia, Vincent Salandria was one of the earliest critics of the government’s forgery, initially demolishing the Warren Commission with three articles written between November 1964 and March 1965 clearly demonstrating how the Commission’s conclusions did not square with, nor follow from, the actual evidence the government itself published in its 26 volumes of Hearing and Exhibits.
In his book, History Will Not Absolve Us, Martin Schotz analyses the Internal Data on the United States Government’s Immediate Reaction to the Assassination. Included are two memoranda from Nicholas Katzenbach, then assistant to Attorney General Robert Kennedy, which document the fact that within three days of the assassination, the Justice Department had made the decision to cooperate in the cover-up as well as a detailed account concerning White’s revelation that enroute back to Washington from Dallas, the passengers aboard Air Force One learned “that there was no conspiracy; learned of the identity of Oswald and his arrest”. This occurred at some point prior to 6:00 P.M. EST when the plane landed at Andrews Air Force Base. Yet Lee Oswald was not arraigned for the murder with malice of Officer J.D. Tippit until 7:10 P.M. CST (6:10 P.M. EST) and not arraigned until 1:35 A.M. CST Saturday November 23 for the murder with malice of John F. Kennedy. Salandria distilled the significance of this in a 1998 speech:
The first announcement of Oswald as the lone assassin, before there was any evidence against him, and while there was overwhelmingly convincing evidence of conspiracy, had come from the White House Situation Room. Only the assassins could have made that premature declaration that Oswald was the assassin. This announcement had been made while back in Dallas District Attorney Henry Wade was stating that “preliminary reports indicated more than one person was involved in the shooting ...”
Written in a lucid, engaging style, the book is filled with insights Garrison gleaned throughout his three year investigation. Published in 1970, it provided a battery of facts and cogent analysis that broadcast and print media had failed to uncover or provide. A central point is how in concert with the fingerprints of U.S. Intelligence Police evident all over the execution and its aftermath,
[c]reation of a believable cover for an assassination is routine for an intelligence agency of a major government. The cover story which is initially distributed by the press release creates a degree of acceptance virtually impossible to dislodge. This is the case especially when the official fiction is supported by the prearranged activities of a decoy pointing in the direction of a false sponsor of the assassination. The actual events of the assassination become irrelevant. All that remains relevant is the cover story issued to the press and the power to control the investigation and conceal the evidence. (p. 28)
Given that the official pronouncement of Lee Oswald being the single, lone assassin came from the White House Situation Room to the new Presidential Party before 6pm on November 22, it can be understood how the extensive cover story which had been carefully planned, directed, and carried out long before November 1963, was now ready to go live and turn up the house lights on the decoy, first by fingering the prearranged scapegoat and then by murdering him before he was able to blow up the façade and tell what he knew about the situation from his vantage point.
A commission genuinely seeking the truth about the assassination would have taken particular note of the remarkable associations of this itinerant warehouse worker. In Dallas, his most frequent companion was an extremely sophisticated man who spoke five languages and had been an intelligence agent for France in World War II. Obviously, such an individual would be most useful to contemporary American intelligence.... (p. 80)
In short, a committee of ordinary citizens exercising common sense would have necessarily perceived the accumulation of indications pointing to linkage of the accused assassin to an intelligence apparatus. Thus, a serious inquiry would have considered the implications of such an intelligence employee being on the scene. As the evidence began to indicate that he could not have accomplished the assassination but was instead set up to be trapped and blamed for it, there would have followed an inquiry into the involvement of the intelligence apparatus itself in the assassination. No committee of Americans would be happy with the task of having to confront this stark implication, but it is unlikely that men free of government connections would conclude that the truth should be hidden and the people fooled in the name of national security.... (pp. 81-2)
The intelligence activity itself is made to appear to be activity unrelated to intelligence by the use of a cover story. When a mission, such as an assassination, is accomplished, false sponsors are created by prior planning and by the planting of leads trailing away from the intelligence organization. These are to draw the attention of investigators who might want to dig below the surface of the cover story. At a more superficial level, an abundance of leads is planted by prior planning to provide a frame-up of the preselected scapegoat.
Our invisible government begins and ends with deception. Perceiving this deception is the key to understanding how the assassination of President Kennedy was accomplished. Understanding the motivation for his assassination is the key to understanding what has happened to America.... (p. 90)
The commission’s reluctance to examine information that Oswald was a government agent is reminiscent of its refusal to look at the photographs of the President’s autopsy. It is troublesome to imagine which would have been more injurious to the commission: finding out that the President was killed by a shot from the front when the scapegoat was positioned in the rear, or discovering that the official assassin was an undercover employee of a government agency when he had been governmentally depicted as a leftist.... (p. 117)
The resourcefulness of modern operational intelligence should not be underestimated. Facts are turned into cobwebs in the minds of witnesses while things which never happened are structured into occurrences which can be cemented into history. (p. 130)
The result of the cover story’s debut, relayed from the White House to the new Presidential Party on the afternoon of November 22, would become the historical record cemented into history with the October 1964 fraudulent Warren Report.
When a counterrevolution is occurring and a low level intelligence employee is being prepared for sacrifice so as to draw attention away from the power elite who are sponsoring a forthcoming assassination, it is perhaps old-fashioned to speak of the injustice being dealt to the scapegoat. Nevertheless, the observation must be made that the inhumanity demonstrated by the CIA, and the masked eminences for whom it performed was scarcely distinguishable from the inhumanity of the totalitarian governments which we had defeated in World War II. Actually we had taken the place of the totalitarian powers whom we had defeated. After our two decades as a superstate during the years of the cold war, we had become a different country.... (p. 133)
A probe of the neck wound by the pathologists in the Bethesda autopsy room would have revealed which way the truth lay. In retrospect, it is easy to see that this is precisely why no such probe was allowed. The neck wound, with the indications of a bullet entry but no exit, was to be the last real hurdle for the planners of the assassination. Afterward, the federal government would seize control of the investigation despite its complete lack of legal authority and that would be, in more ways than one, the end of the matter.
It was five years after the assassination, at the trial in New Orleans, that it was learned that the neck wound had never been examined. Colonel Pierre Finck, the Army pathologist subpoenaed from Washington by the District Attorney’s office, had an unusually retentive memory for details. He simply could not recall, however, who ordered the pathologists not to look at the wound in the neck. Considering the historic occasion and considering the implications of such a strange order, one would think he would never forget the man who issued this command. Finck was able to remember that the man was a general and that he was not a doctor, but then his memory failed him. (p. 166)
The Opening of Chapter 1 and the book’s final Chapter, “The War Machine” presents an effective summation of why the 35th President of the United States was killed by elements of his own government. It is refreshing and liberating to read the simple, honest, direct language, so lacking in the present day looking-glass reality produced daily by the bulk of monetized corporate state media.
A man who cares too much for the human race may find himself living in a hostile environment. His humanity may not be regarded as dangerous so long as his voice cannot be heard by too many people, but if he is eloquent, or if he is in a position to affect the affairs of the nation, then his humanity will be regarded by some men as a great threat.
After the United States ascended to the position of the most powerful military nation in history, in the midst of its accumulation of the most effective death machinery of all time, there occurred the accident of the election of a President who regarded the entire human race with compassion. By the time this happened, the cold war had become our major industry, and the Central Intelligence Agency had become the clandestine arm of our military-industrial complex and, in the process, the most effective assassination machine in the world. (p. 25)
A successful coup d’état affects not merely the history of a nation but may change its power structure. With the killing of John Kennedy, the very position of the Presidency was drastically reduced in status. Henceforth, the President would be a broker for the war machine. He would be an advocate and spokesman for the Pentagon. All Presidents who followed Kennedy would have to know their impotence, no matter what their public role.
Until the work of the Kennedy assassins is undone, Presidents will come and go but the warfare machine and its extensive intelligence tentacles, domestic as well as foreign, will remain in control. The assassination reduced the President of the United States to a transient official, a servant of the warfare conglomerate. His assignment is to speak as often as possible about the nation’s desire for peace, while he serves as a business agent in Congress for the military and their hardware manufacturers.... (p. 180)
If the government were to take its gold bullion from Fort Knox, fly it to the Pacific in daily flights and drop it in the ocean, this would not be far removed from what has been accomplished by our adventure in Vietnam since the removal of President Kennedy. Even as the dollar approached the value of a postage stamp, the westward flights of troops and weapons into Asia were continued without abatement.
It was not possible to have price controls because the government could not admit it was engaged in war. Consequently, as the Vietnam War continued, the buying power of the dollar steadily descended. What the average American was able to retain at the end of the year was swept up by the heavy taxation, to pay for the Vietnam War and for the CIA’s adventures throughout the world.
Seven years after the assassination and the subsequent Vietnam escalation, our economy was showing the strain of too much war production and too much investment in warfare adventures. War production fails to add to the well being of the people and distorts the national economy by adding to its waste and reducing its efficiency. Real income falls as uncontrolled prices continue to rise. Insufficient money is available for the cities, and the standard of living of workers suffers. The quality of public education deteriorates. Billions of dollars that might have been available for our new schools and other social needs have in effect been dumped into the Pacific Ocean. The CIA and the Pentagon are not interested in new schools and social needs. These are death-oriented operations.... (p. 182)
It is inconceivable that men high in our government today are not fully aware of what really happened to John Kennedy and why it happened. If it can be understood outside Washington, it can be understood in Washington. Yet their sophisticated silence remains unbroken as they continue to play the game that all is well in America.
Their continued silence is eloquent testimony that the military and intelligence power elite, which sponsored the assassination and which then initiated the Vietnam escalation, continues to retain covert control of the nation. It is all too apparent that this force in our government believes that violence is the ultimate solution to any problem. This is why the present period is a most dangerous one for America and for the world....
Just as the cold war provides reasons for the existence of autocratic power, so does chaos within the nation operate as a source of power. As chaos continues, the populace will tend to be less concerned about abridgment of individual rights and will more willingly grant to a strong centralized government such power it claims it needs. Thus the warfare state may continue to appear to be relevant even after it has had to reduce its international adventures to some degree because the people are sick of war.
Such seeming relevance depends, however, upon the existence of chaos. The government’s domestic intelligence can supply chaos in good measure by stirring the embers wherever there is social discontent, and in a society depleted by years of war there will be much of that.... (p. 184)
In any event, we need no longer pretend that there is any mystery left about the assassination of John Kennedy. The cold war was the biggest business in America, worth eighty billion dollars a year as well as tremendous power to men in Washington. The President was murdered because he was genuinely seeking peace in a corrupt world. As tired as we are of the horror of the subject, all of us must address ourselves honestly to the meaning and implications of the assassination of John Kennedy, or all of us will pay the price of living in tyranny. (p. 185)
This cartoon by Herblock was published in December 1969. It painfully and accurately reflects the reality of USG policy based on the Warfare State’s priorities coincident with the time period A Heritage of Stone was being written.
Webster’s defines tyranny as “oppressive power”. That we live in a state of oppressive power is everywhere apparent. In the Foreword Garrison lays out the challenge—still to be addressed by all of us—that unless humankind ends war and learns to love the human family, we will become extinguished and, for the more complex life forms here, Earth will become a silent heritage of stone.
The descendant of the hairy Stone Age man would rebuild the earth, change the course of rivers and touch the very stars at which his ancestor stared from his cave at night. There was nothing he would be unable to do, so long as he was not asked to love his fellow man.
Man has invented the cross, the gallows, the rack, the gibbet, the guillotine, the sword, the machine gun, the electric chair, the hand grenade, the personnel mine, the flame thrower, the “blockbuster,” the obsolescent atom bomb and the currently popular hydrogen bomb—all made to maim or destroy his fellow man. These inventions, combined with hate and selfishness and lust for power, are responsible for the unending destruction of humans by other humans. Yet most dangerous of all is modern man’s interest in his own self. Hate and love of power could be dealt with were it not for the license they receive from the inertia of millions. The most dangerous of all humans are the gray mice: it is their silence that kills. It was the silence of the gray mice outside the German concentration camps that killed the millions inside.
Whether we survive the Thermonuclear Age may come down to the simple question of whether we learn to care about our fellow men. Perhaps our cruelty and detachment will lend to a final day of fire for the most rational creature who ever walked the earth. The computers which we have invented now tell us that our losses in a nuclear exchange will be many millions of American dead. We have come a long way from the first stone axe.
Is there an alternative to the extinction of man? Those gibbets, thumbscrews, gallows, treasured hates and fond cruelties must inexorably give way to the expansion of man’s intellect and reason. Along with this, he must increase enormously his compassion for and identification with the species. Failing this, he will become silent forever.
The book’s dedication speaks to the human inheritors of Mother Earth. Garrison states that humanity will be saved from a heritage of stone only if it understands the meaning of the Kennedy assassination by the warfare state. Understanding how our world truly operates given what has occurred previously liberates consciousness from the societal domination trance and opens infinite possibilities for life after empire.
To the Younger Generation.
May its members have the insight to
see the deceptions of the warfare state.
May they have the courage to stand
on the side of humanity.
Garrison’s allegorical passage at the beginning envisions a non-Terran visiting Earth in a future timeline where our species effected our own extinction. It appears in Chapter 9, Nightfall. Except for the final line, it was originally written as the close of the Foreword he wrote for the 1966 book, Crime, Law and Corrections. Beneath the title of that FOREWORD is a centered line of text, A Heritage of Stone. Hence the summation of the 1970 book as distilled in its title, was originally composed as the introduction of Crime, Law and Corrections published four years earlier. A number of segments in the 1966 Foreword are reflected or exactly repeated in the 1970 Foreword.
Edited by Ralph Slovenko, one of Garrison’s former assistants, the 1966 criminology book is a well accepted volume with its intended audience of criminologists, prosecutors, and others in the profession. Serving five years during World War II, including combat in Europe, Garrison experienced first-hand the human capacity for evil expressed in the Nazi death camps, specifically Dachau. The following precedes the aforementioned allegory at the close of the Foreword:
Photo by Jim GarrisonMan’s Prey: The favorite quarry of man is man. In the 20th century alone he has shot, gassed, hanged, stabbed or otherwise disposed of 100 million of his fellow creatures. The Nazis at Dachau had exhausted their supply of crystal for the gas chambers, and the victim above, one of the prisoners, was machine-gunned to death by the SS a few hours before the arrival of Allied troops. There is no record of who he was or where he came from.
Dachau ... Auschwitz ... Mauthausen ... Sachsenhousen ... Treblinka ... New York City. What is your hometown?
What happened to your disinterested millions? Your uncommitted and uninvolved, your preoccupied and bored? Where are their private horizons and their mirrored worlds of self? Where is their splendid indifference today?
Now you can be silent forever.
Will we become silent forever? This question demands an answer from each of us. Steven Newcomb (Lenape/Shawnee) invites all “to walk with us on the Sacred Path, in honor of the first principle of our Original Nations: ‘Respect the Earth as our Mother and have a Sacred Regard for All Living Things.’” Oren Lyons (Onondaga) describes our situation in the following framework.
Maurice Strong who was the Secretary General of UNCED in 1992 in Rio asked me to repeat for him the instruction from the Peacemaker so that he could pass it on to the leaders of the world. I said, Really. He says I think it’s a good instruction. So it goes, it’s very simple. The Peacemaker said to the assembled Chiefs that he had taken all this time to raise and instruct and give the Clans and the Nations and the responsibilities of the Women, responsibilities of the Men, responsibilities of the People—which is by far the largest responsibility. And he said that when you sit and you council for the welfare of the people think not of yourself nor of your family or even your generation, he said, but make your decisions on behalf of the seventh generation coming so they may enjoy what you have today.
It’s an instruction of responsibility. It was a very visionary instruction. It was a long-term instruction. It was one that looked seven generations and I’m talking the full life of a person. Not the generations they have today of twenty years or so. To us that’s not a generation.
So he was saying if you take care of the future you’ll be taking care of yourself. You yourself will have peace. Peace is what we want. Peace is what we’re after. The wars that are raging about now are violent, violent, I would say, examples of what happens when you refuse to acknowledge a better way of life. We have to do better if we’re going to survive.
I’ll tell you this: that the Earth is not going to disappear. They have a great regenerative power, this Earth. One of my good friends John Mohawk, young man, what I call resident intellect of the Iroquois; great, brilliant mind. He said, I always thought that human beings are still a biological experiment. We’re here a short time. Haven’t been here long. In the time of the Earth, not very long at all and the Earth is not dependent on us, we’re dependent on it. So that if we choose to eradicate ourselves from this Earth by whatever means, the Earth goes nowhere and in time it will regenerate and all the lakes will be pristine, the rivers, the waters, the mountains. Everything will be green again. It’ll be peaceful. There may not be people but the Earth will regenerate. And you know why? Because the Earth has all the time in the world. And we don’t.
In 1966 Jim Garrison summarized his conclusions about man’s inhumanity to man as exemplified by his WWII experience, culminating with what he witnessed and felt at Dachau, and deepened with the ushering in of the age of nuclear weaponry, the ultimate killing machine that will, if not permanently abolished world-wide, produce a future where WE will “be silent forever.” As Garrison makes clear, our cruelty, detachment, and exponentially increasing violent capacity to terminate Life must be offset and superseded by enormous increase in compassion for and identification with the whole of our human family. How is such transformation and transcendence possible and how can it occur?
Buckminster Fuller devoted the bulk of his lifetime inquiring into the question, What would it take to make humanity a success in the universe? In her life’s work as author, cultural historian, systems scientist, and attorney, Riane Eisler has pioneered a multidisciplinary, systemic approach to the way forward if our species is to manifest success in the universe. In her book The Chalice & the Blade: Our History, Our Future (first published in 1987, the entire book is online), Eisler presents and details what she has called Cultural Transformation theory, proposing “that underlying the great surface diversity of human culture are two basic models of society.”
The first, which I call the dominator model, is what is popularly termed either patriarchy or matriarchy—the ranking of one half of humanity over the other. The second, in which social relations are primarily based on the principle of linking rather than ranking, may best be described as the partnership model. In this model—beginning with the most fundamental difference in our species, between male and female—diversity is not equated with either inferiority or superiority.5
Cultural Transformation theory further proposes that the original direction in the mainstream of our cultural evolution was toward partnership but that, following a period of chaos and almost total cultural disruption, there occurred a fundamental social shift. The greater availability of data on Western societies (due to the ethnocentric focus of Western social science) makes it possible to document this shift in more detail through the analysis of Western cultural evolution. However, there are also indications that this change in direction from a partnership to a dominator model was roughly paralleled in other parts of the world.6
The title The Chalice and the Blade derives from this cataclysmic turning point during the prehistory of Western civilization, when the direction of our cultural evolution was quite literally turned around. At this pivotal branching, the cultural evolution of societies that worshiped the life-generating and nurturing powers of the universe—in our time still symbolized by the ancient chalice or grail—was interrupted. There now appeared on the prehistoric horizon invaders from the peripheral areas of our globe who ushered in a very different form of social organization. As the University of California archaeologist Marija Gimbutas writes, these were people who worshiped “the lethal power of the blade”7—the power to take rather than give life that is the ultimate power to establish and enforce domination. (p. xvii)
The book contains a great deal of source material referenced in the Notes. Footnote 5, above, distinguishes between dominator and actualization hierarchies.
Eisler is also the President of the Center for Partnership Studies, established in 1987 in response to the urging by readers of The Chalice & the Blade. The book was hailed by Princeton anthropologist Ashley Montague as “the most important book since Darwin’s Origin of Species.” As described on the CPS website in the Partnership and Transformation section:
Success and Survival in the post industrial world requires an accelerated shift towards partnership. Each one of us can contribute to the partnership movement. We can change by example, education, and advocacy. We can shift our relations from domination to partnership—starting with our day-to-day relations all the way to how we relate to our Mother Earth.
In the domination system, somebody has to be on top and somebody has to be on the bottom. People learn, starting in early childhood, to obey orders without question. They learn to carry a harsh voice in their heads telling them they’re no good, they don’t deserve love, they need to be punished. Families and societies are based on control that is explicitly or implicitly backed up by guilt, fear, and force. The world is divided into in-groups and out-groups, with those who are different seen as enemies to be conquered or destroyed. Difference—beginning with the difference between male and female—is equated with superiority or inferiority, dominating or being dominated, being served or serving, and this is applied to different races, religions, and ethnicities.
In contrast, the partnership system supports mutually respectful and caring relations. Because there is no need to maintain rigid rankings of control, there is also no built-in need for abuse and violence. Partnership relations free our innate capacity to feel joy, to play. They enable us to grow mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. This is true for individuals, families, and whole societies. Conflict is an opportunity to learn and to be creative, and power is exercised in ways that empower rather than disempower others. There are hierarchies, since every society needs parents, teachers, managers, and leaders, but rather than hierarchies of domination based on power over, we find hierarchies of actualization, based on power to and power with, where power is used to empower rather than disempower others.
No system is a pure partnership or domination system. It is always a matter of degree, of where it is situated on the domination-partnership continuum.
Unlike conventional categories, the partnership and domination systems take into account the impact on beliefs and institutions of how a society constructs the most foundational human relations, without which none of us would be here: the relations between the female and male halves of humanity and between them and their daughters and sons.
One overarching myth is that partnership is just another term for working together or collaboration. The reality is that a partnership system refers to much more than collaboration and that collaboration is possible in both the partnership and domination systems, but is patterned differently. We need to move along the spectrum in the partnership direction to heal all our relationships.
Her research finding of a connection between the status of women and economic development, human rights, and levels of national and international violence was empirically verified in the study published in 1995 based on data from 89 nations, Women, Men, and the Global Quality of Life. The last two paragraphs of The Chalice & the Blade’s Introduction provides an overview of the Life-affirming and creative transformation possible if we so choose this path.
Though poles apart in origin—one from the traditional male, the other from a radically different female experience and worldview—feminist and “chaos” theories in fact have a good deal in common. Within mainstream science both are still often viewed as mysterious activities at or beyond the fringe of the sanctified endeavors. And in their focus on transformation, these two bodies of thought share the growing awareness that the present system is breaking down, that we must find ways to break through to a different kind of future.
The chapters that follow explore the roots of—and paths to—that future. They tell a story that begins thousands of years before our recorded (or written) history: the story of how the original partnership direction of Western culture veered off into a bloody five-thousand-year dominator detour. They show that our mounting global problems are in large part the logical consequences of a dominator model of social organization at our level of technological development—hence can not be solved within it. And they also show that there is another course which, as co-creators of our own evolution, is still ours to choose. This is the alternative of breakthrough rather than breakdown: how through new ways of structuring politics, economics, science, and spirituality we can move into the new era of a partnership world. (p. xxiii)
A wealth of critical analysis and sources are provided throughout the internet resource of the Center for Partnership Studies. In We Can Become a Caregiving Nation Eisler’s 2008 book, The Real Wealth of Nations: Creating a Caring Economics is highlighted wherein the author writes that most industrialized nations today—with the exception of our United States—“realized that caring for basic human needs cannot be left to the market.” Caring Economy Fast Fact Sheets and the 22-page chapter summaries of The Real Wealth of Nations summarize ways to approach supporting the move from domination to partnership structures of society. Representing the academic wing of CPS’s message, the Interdisciplinary Journal of Partnership Studies, is dedicated to sharing new knowledge and successful applications of Eisler’s partnership paradigm: a new perspective on human possibilities increasingly utilized, explored, and expanded by others. A helpful resource in the 2015 Inaugural issue, is Stefano Mercanti’s (Univ. of Udine, Italy) “Glossary for Cultural Transformation: The Language of Partnership and Domination.” Additionally, a section on the CPS website provides a helpful introduction to Partnership Language.
In 2018 at the Safe Ireland Summit, Riane Eisler spoke on the topic of “Breaking Out of the Domination Trance; Building Foundations for a Safe, Equitable, Caring World.” This was published as an article in Kosmos - journal for global transformation, Winter 2018. As she describes it, “I have been asked to tell you about the findings from my research identifying the core components of a safer, more equitable, and caring world—especially one where women and children are finally safe—a goal that is very close to my heart. In doing so, I will place violence against women and children in its larger social and historical context, and, most importantly, explore with you how to bring about fundamental change—not only in the prevailing worldview, but in our lives and our world.” Included in the print article, in addition to the text itself, are the following embedded quotes.
Now the good news is that a substantial number of us are beginning to wake up from what I have called the domination trance, a trance perpetuated by all our institutions, our systems of belief, both our popular and scientific narratives, and even our language, so we are just beginning to see something that, once articulated, may seem obvious: that how a society constructs the roles and relations of the two basic forms of our species—male and female—as well as how it constructs early childhood relations, are actually fundamental social issues that directly impact whether all our social institutions—from the family, education, and religion to politics and economics—are equitable or inequitable, authoritarian or democratic, violent or nonviolent.
It’s only by leaving these old categories behind that we see that cross-culturally and historically there are two underlying social configurations: the Domination System and the Partnership System.
Once we understand these two social configurations, we can answer the critical question of what kind of society we need to support our enormous human capacities for consciousness, caring, and creativity, rather than—because we obviously also have these—our capacities for insensitivity, violence, and destructiveness.
It’s up to us—to you and me and our colleagues and friends—to change this major obstacle to moving forward. We have to join together to bring into both popular and academic circles the partnership system and the domination system, which show connections that are not visible through the lenses of old categories.
Present economic systems—whether they’re capitalist or socialist—are not capable of meeting our unprecedented economic, environmental, and social challenges. Both capitalism and socialism not only came out of industrial times, and we are now well into the post-industrial age, but both emerged during times that oriented far more to the domination side of the continuum.
The struggle for our future is not between religion and secularism, right and left, East and West, capitalism and socialism, but in all these sectors between traditions of domination and a partnership way of life.
And the close of the conclusion provides a present-day summary of the conscious understanding of cultural transformation, so vital to the success of humanity in the universe.
We can begin accelerating the shift from domination to partnership by focusing on two of the cornerstones for a partnership world: changes in  gender and  childhood relations, especially ending traditions of violence and abuse of women and children, which have maintained relations of domination and submission, not only in our families but in all our institutions. Because, again, what children experience and observe in their early years, the childhood and gender relations we have been discussing, is foundational.
We also have to pay attention to the other two cornerstones for either domination or partnership systems: the cornerstones of  economics and  narratives and language. All four are inextricably interconnected and must be changed from domination to partnership.
Cultures are human creations, and you can play a role in accelerating the shift from domination to partnership worldwide. Let us break out of the domination trance that makes insensitivity, violence, and cruelty seem inevitable, and use our enormous capacities for creativity—as well as for consciousness and caring—to build the missing foundations for that more peaceful and equitable partnership future we so want and need—for ourselves, our children, and generations to come.
Buckminster Fuller devoted the bulk of his lifetime inquiring into the question, What would it take to make humanity a success in the universe?
⇑ Coda: eXtinction Rebellion
Everyone has choice
When to or not to raise their voices
It’s you that decides
—George Harrison, 1970
Writing about Hitler and Adolf Eichmann, Jim Garrison observed in the 1966 Foreword to Crime, Law and Corrections, “The minds of men who hate humanity reflect the world they experienced when they were young.” Riane Eisler has devoted a great deal of research, thought, and action to the human experience of childhood relations when young. As she describes in the 2018 article above,
we know from neuroscience that what children experience and observe in their family and other early relations directly impacts nothing less than how our brains develop, and these experiences and observations are directly shaped by the degree to which a cultural environment orients to partnership or domination.
Consider that when family relations based on chronic violations of human rights are considered normal and moral, they provide models for condoning such violations in other relations. And if these relations are violent, children learn that violence from those who are more powerful toward those who are less powerful is acceptable in dealing with conflicts and/or problems and to maintain or impose control. They learn this not only on an emotional and mental level but on a neural level.
Condoning—as well as being inured to—such chronic violations in our relations with our planetary home can be seen as a further extension of the violence of domination our current sociological foundations are based upon. Neural programming influence is foundational to the world we collectively co-create, interact with, and relate to. As John Trudell clearly expressed:
In the reality
Of many realities
How we see what we see
Affects the quality
Of our reality ...
We are the DNA of Earth, Moon, Planets, Stars
We are related to the universal
Creator created creation
Spirit and intelligence with clarity
Being and human as power
We are a part of the memories of evolution
These memories carry knowledge
These memories carry our identity
Beneath race, gender, class, age
Beneath citizen, business, state, religion
We are human beings
And these memories
Are trying to remind us
Human beings, human beings
It’s time to rise up
Remember who we are
I think our whole society tries to stabilize itself by starting out to destroy sensitivity to incoherence starting with very young children. If people could see the vast incoherence that is going on in society they would be disturbed and they would feel the need to do something. If you’re not sensitive to it you don’t feel disturbed and you don’t feel you need to do anything.
I remember an instance, a daughter was telling her mother, “this school is terrible, the teacher is terrible, very inconsistent, doing all sorts of crazy things,” and so on. Finally the mother was saying, “You’d better stop this—in this house the teacher is always right.” Now she understood that the teacher was wrong obviously, but the message was, it was no use. Even the message may have been right in some sense, but still it illustrates that the predicament is that in order to avoid this sort of trouble, starting with very young children, we are trained to become insensitive to incoherence. If there is incoherence in our own behavior, we thereby also become insensitive to it.
Webster’s defines cohere as “to hold together”; coherence as “integration of diverse elements, relationships, or values.” Incoherence is lacking cohesion and the process of dis-integration. In our world incoherence is rampant in the runaway cults of materialism, militarism, and racism dominating culture and society. Some of the most potent forms are encapsulated in the following list.
And then there is the decades-in-the-making burning fuse of global overheat that must be addressed NOW if Life on Mother Earth that is not yet extinct—including our human family—has any chance to survive, much less further evolve. Time of Useful Consciousness Radio recently produced a two-part [I, II] program on the Extinction Rebellion movement presented by Dr. Rupert Read, speaking at a meeting on February 6 at the University of East Anglia (UEA) where he teaches. A Professor of Philosophy, and a former Green Party Councillor (2004-11), Read covered a great deal of ground concerning our environmental crisis, facing societal collapse, and what to do about it.
Based on autonomy, decentralisation, and non-violence, eXtinction Rebellion—XR: https://rebellion.earth—is an international movement—international signup at https://xrebellion.org—using nonviolent civil disobedience to achieve radical change in order to minimize the risk of human extinction and ecological collapse. It was inaugurated on 31 October 2018 when a group assembled at Parliament Square in London to announce a Declaration of Rebellion against the UK Government. All are welcome to participate in eXtinction Rebellion who adhere to the 10 Core Principles and Values:
The following 1:18 film contains eXtinction Rebellion’s three demands in the UK:
The ecological crisis can no longer be ignored. We are in open rebellion against our government and we call upon every principled and peaceful citizen to rise with us. We have three demands:
- The government must TELL THE TRUTH by declaring a climate and ecological emergency.
- The government must act now to halt biodiversity loss and reduce greenhouse gas emissions to Net Zero by 2025.
- The government must Commission a National Citizen’s Assembly, a group of citizens chosen by lot and reflective of the demographics of the UK, together with experts and stakeholders, to vote on recommendations on the climate and ecological emergency.
We refuse to leave a dying planet to future generations by failing to act now.
Information about possible solutions to the above-three demands includes:
Even more alarming—which is almost completely ignored in the IPCC process—is the potential for massive methane feedback. As we melt the permafrost and melt the ice under the seabed we are starting to release increasing amounts of methane. Methane is a greenhouse gas that is somewhere between 25 and 86 times (depending on how it is calculated) as powerful as carbon dioxide. See two videos on Arctic Methane: Why The Sea Ice Matters (2012, 19:34) and A Catastrophe in the Making (2017, 14:54). Rupert cautions that some scientists are worried that once this methane release begins to significantly increase it will be uncontrollable and global overheat will become runaway. Some of the scientists covered on TUC Radio (all programs are 29 mins) include:
Given the severity of this global emergency—that our species as well as every other one still extant is facing the increasing likelihood of a mass extinction event—it is critical and an indicator of psychological health as well as survival instinct that we collectively confront and address the illegitimacy of governments around the globe that are consigning all to extinction, an event of utter finality. As Read expresses this:
We need an absolute step change. We need it rapidly and we need it for a long time. And the best idea that we have is this. The best idea that we have is to say, The societies that are committing us to oblivion, the governments that are committing us to oblivion, the governments that are planning—when you look at the realities of the Paris climate change Accord—that are planning for the self-destruction of the societies which they’ve created and which we depend upon, these governments are no longer legitimate. Alright? How can the government be legitimate which is engaged in a sort of mass criminal conspiracy to not only destroy even more of the non-human life on Earth; we’ve destroyed half the non-human life on Earth during my lifetime. It’s so unbelievable and so tragic. You can say it as many times as you like and it’s almost impossible to compute.
So there’s that and then the fact that we are now putting ourselves on the endangered species list. How can such governments expect us to go along with their laws any longer? It is time, it is high time, it is past time for us to say, No. For us to be freed up from the assumptions of political business as usual by the awesome horror of the situation that we now find ourselves in.
Read describes how he thought about all this for a long time and did not speak out as he thought no one will want to hear this. When he did come around to writing and then speaking, instead of causing people to feel demoralized and paralyzed he found responses almost universally were in the range of, ‘Thank goodness, someone is finally telling it like it is,’ and ‘Finally someone is speaking the truth.’ In addition, especially with students, he has been told the information is energizing and liberating and how “we can start to focus on actually thinking about what it would be to do enough such that civilization will not collapse and bring everything down with it. And also to start to think about, If we are going to collapse, what does that mean? And that’s what Deep Adaptation is about.” This (starting at 50:10) is from a panel discussion with Bill McKibben and Kim Cobb on The Ethics of Climate Change, held at Middlebury College, on 8 April 2019. In the Q&A the question was posed, “Do you think that violent protest would be morally acceptable in the face of pending climate disaster?” (1:23:28). Part way through his answer Read responded with this:
I completely agree with Bill, that certainly in societies like this one and mine, nonviolence is just more effective [than violence]. The authorities want you to become violent because then they have a good excuse for repressing you. And if you are consistently, and carefully, and strongly nonviolent then you place them in all kinds of dilemmas as to what to do. And that’s very often how radical movements in the 20th century succeeded. I think part of the literature that Bill had in mind that he mentioned earlier which I want to particularly recommend is a book called This Is An Uprising (isbn.nu) which documents this in some detail by the Englers.
I would add that, Bill says going to prison isn’t much fun, and based on my very small experience of that I agree. I would say however that engaging in nonviolent civil disobedience can be incredible fun. In the eXtinction Rebellion we have the best fun. When you have a thousand people who just walk into a road and there are only like a hundred policeman and they can’t stop you and you have a party in the road, well then you’re having fun. And then the police start arresting some of you and then they realize there’s no way they’re going to be able to arrest all of you and they give up. And then you have fun for the whole of the rest of the day.
When you start getting sufficient numbers of people together, nonviolent direct action starts to become easier and easier and you actually have less and less risk of being the one who goes to prison. When you’ve got five thousand people blocking bridges as we had in December in London, there’s no way that the police are going to put five thousand people in prison. But you can sure have a helluva party with five thousand people.
I want to specifically address the younger people listening to this. And here is what I have to say to you. Your so-called leaders have failed you. Your parents I’m sure mean well, but they and their generation have failed you. Your teachers, despite their best intentions, have failed you. And we, despite our best endeavors, even we, thus far, have failed you.
We’ve all failed you because we are sending you naked and unprepared into a deteriorating future. This earth is now committed to a deteriorating climate that will be in breakdown for a long time to come. Because even if we stop all anthropogenic carbon emissions tomorrow, the accumulated heat in the oceans and the accumulated long-lasting greenhouse gases in the atmosphere would go on overheating the earth for years, decades to come.
Furthermore, there is a phenomenon called global dimming which means that there are aerosols, there are smoke particles, etc., in the atmosphere which are actually masking the extent to which we’ve already committed ourselves to further warming. In other words, if we clean up the atmosphere, as we need to do, to stop the millions of deaths that are occurring from air pollution, the amount of heat in the atmosphere will suddenly be revealed as significantly higher.
Because of these time lags, you put all these factors together, if collectively we had been serious about protecting your future, we would have elected seriously green-leaning governments in the late 20th century. There would have been a green new deal fully in place before you were born. The green new deal now being talked about, and so far it’s only talk, is a splendid venture, which I hope happens. But it’s a little too late and a little too little.
The globally hegemonic civilization, industrial growth capitalism, is in its death throes. It will soon be over. That is not a guess. That is not a prediction. It’s simple logic. The logic of the more or less planned coming failure of the Paris Agreement on climate which is a voluntary agreement to do far too little to stop catastrophic climate change from occurring. An agreement whose voluntary contributions add up to far less even than that far too little. And even those inadequate voluntary contributions from nations will not be achieved by governments still aspiring to endless economic growth; still building massive infrastructure, still facilitating expansions in animal agriculture.
Paris will not enable us to keep to 2 degrees of global overheat. Let alone 1.5. It will yield more like 4. And that will commit us to a hot house earth scenario of vicious tipping cascades including such ecologically catastrophic horrors as the disappearance of the Amazon Rainforest.
This looming future is simply incompatible with globalized industrial life as we know it. Forget worrying about sea level rise. If we are headed to 4 to 5 degrees of global overheat, then we are headed for a breakdown of agriculture as we know it long before New York and Boston flood out. Which is another way of saying that hunger and potentially mass starvation are on course to come, even to rich countries, within the lifetimes of most of you in this room.
Which is another way of saying that climate breakdown will likely end the lifetimes of some of you in this room.
Do you see what I’m saying? I’m afraid for you. I’m desperately afraid. Grief and justified fear. That is the context of our vital discussion today.
So we need to talk about the unprecedented honesty, courage, and will, that will be needed if we are going to manage to avoid this fate by rapidly turning our civilization into something different. By an unprecedented transformation that would phase out much of our current way of life before it phases us out with extreme prejudice.
We need to talk about achieving an emergency brake on climate dangerous emissions. It’s not enough to talk about things like electric cars. We need to talk about taking a lot of the cars that exist off the road and not replacing them. We need to talk about taking planes out of circulation, taking many power stations offline.
We’re going to have to get used to having a lot less fuel and a lot less energy at our disposal.
We need to talk also about the anger that you have every right to feel. The committing of the human race, not to mention many species of our other than human kin, to possible or indeed actual extinction, is surely the vilest crime in history. The cover-up of it, the fact that what I’m saying will be news to some of you, the chronic lack of attention to the ecological emergency, is without doubt the vilest deception in history. A deception in which almost everyone is complicit. Not just the laughable, outright climate deniers, including your laughable so-called president.
I repeat, this is a deception in which at some level, virtually everyone has been complicit. That’s one of the very worst ways in which the older generation has failed you. Because everything has been left so horribly late, we need to talk, too, about adaptation to the coming climate deterioration.
Tragically it is too late now to rely only on mitigation, let alone prevention, of dangerous anthropogenic climate change. So it’s time to talk a lot more about transformational adaptation which is the main topic of the book of my think tank [Facing up to Climate Reality: Honesty, Disaster and Hope (2019)] that Daniel so kindly mentioned. And even about deep adaptation (14:22). Adaptation that is premised on the possibility of our societies collapsing.
And finally, we need to talk about love. About caring enough to really show up to this, the determinative issue of our time. The only thing that our kids will be interested in when they ask us what we did during the climate war.
We need to talk about the love we feel for life, for wilderness, for nature, for the innocent, for those who will come after us, and for each other.
So thanks for showing up. I look forward to our conversation. There simply couldn’t be a more important one. Truly, this is now quite literally, a vital discussion. Thank you.
Truly, the tragically suffocating effect by monetized media presenting the false, deceptive dichotomy of ‘On the one hand, ..., and on the other hand ...’ (as if there are two valid sides to this emergency) propagandistic denial by the corporate-state fossil fuel nexus of the ever increasing extent of our planetary global overheat emergency is one of the vilest deceptions in human history. I would put on a par with this the on-going promotion of nuclear power, with proponents continuing to push the horrendous lies about it being a “safe,” “carbon neutral,” and “clean” energy.
Near the end of the UEA Q&A, Read spoke to the question about one of the downsides of reaching Net Carbon Zero by 2025.
If [we]’re going to achieve carbon neutrality by 2025 there is certainly a likelihood [we]’re going to potentially throw millions of people out of work. So how do [we] deal with that? Here’s one obvious possible solution: [we] share the work. We live in one of the most overworked countries in the world. We have huge numbers of people, millions of people, who suffer from systematic stress due to overwork. And then we have millions of people who are unemployed. This shouldn’t be beyond the wits of human beings to figure out a way of evening that out. So let’s stop doing a lot of the work which is destroying our country and destroying our world and share out there the good work—like work in the health services and so on and so forth—a bit better....
We have to make some really hard choices. We’re going to have to stop doing a lot of motor travel as we know it. Do you remember the old Second World War poster: “Is Your Journey Really Necessary?” That’s a good kind of question for the age that we live in. We’ll be needing to think about that on an individual basis and on a community basis and on a national basis. And this, I think, is the kind of mature conversation that we now need to start to be having.
We organise in small groups. These groups are connected in a complex web that is constantly evolving as we grow and learn. We are working to build a movement that is participatory, decentralised, and inclusive.
The structure aims to empower anybody to act as part of XR, so long as they agree to follow our ten core principles (above). You can read our Self-Organising System (or XR Constitution) for more information. We are seeking a balance between being able to act quickly in response to fast-changing situations and being able to integrate the collective wisdom of multiple perspectives when needed.
Phil Kingston, 83, taken into custody (below), is holding the “Don’t Jail The Canaries” banner on the left (above) atop the Docklands Light Railway train at Canary Wharf in the vicinity of the London Stock Exchange. 25 Apr 2019 marked the conclusion of 10 days of XR nonviolent protests in London.
A participatory democracy extant today is the Hau de no sau nee (aka Iroquois Confederacy and Six Nations) meaning People Building a Long House. Existing from long before the late 1400s, this form of governance has survived more than 5 centuries onslaught of the Empire Domination Model of Christianity. Faithkeeper and Onondaga Chief, Oren Lyons, articulated (in 2006) an essential understanding and more holistic worldview of our human place with all our relatives in the web of Life we are enfolded within.
[W]e’re dedicated to peace. And that was what’s so important about that time, a thousand years ago. When, if you looked in Europe at that time, as great wars were going on and the whole history of Europe as I saw it is one war after the other, century after century, how people lived in constant fear and thousands of thousands of people died. Well, in this part of the universe, which was just isolated, the western hemisphere wasn’t even known about. We were operating under a different system. It was basically one of respect and councils of leaders to try to keep the peace because human nature is human nature. You have to have a process by which to meet problems. You have to have rules and so forth. So the rules were always based around respect.
Fundamental to all of that was the understanding of how the Earth itself was paramount to all of our life. So in this idea of respect was also the understanding of what we should do and how we should conduct ourselves according to the elements of the Earth and all of the natural world.
We always said that we have been told and understand that we’re relatives. Where our white brother will talk about water and trees and animals and fish as resources we talk about them as relatives. That’s a whole different perspective. If you think that they’re relatives and you understand that then you’re going to treat them differently.
Janine Benyus, author of a wonderful book called Biomimicry, pointed out that humans assigned one group of people called biologists to study how other species make a living, while a totally separate group of people called economists were to figure out how humans make a living. Now we have the opportunity to look at economics in terms of biology—to look at the experience of four-and-half billion years of self-organization, to see how young species are acquisitive and territorial and grabby, and mature species co-operate, as in a rainforest. Where is the leadership? Distributed leadership. Everything shared and recycled. What a great economic model!
Sahtouris encapsulates a summary of such self-organizing principles in the following from her Lifeweb site (requires flash):
Main Features or Principles of Healthy Living Systems
(from cells to organisms, ecosystems to Earth, bodies to businesses)
Writing about The Post-Corporate World, visionary David Korten has covered a great deal of ground concerning understanding how living economies operate today and long, long, long before the arrival of our earliest ancestors here on Mother Earth.
All living systems, from individual cells to biological communities, are complex self-organizing economies in which many individual entities cooperate to sustain themselves and the life of the whole—as when plants produce food and oxygen needed by animals, which in turn produce fertilizers and carbon dioxide that feed plant life. As Willis Harman and Elisabet Sahtouris write in Biology Revisioned, “Trees shelter birds and insects, bees pollinate flowers, mammals package seeds in fertilizer and distribute them, fungi and plants exchange materials, saprotrophs, whether microbes or vultures, recycle, birds warn of predators, etc.” The species that survive and prosper are those that find a niche in which they meet their own needs in ways that simultaneously serve others.
Life, then, consists of countless individuals self-organized into “holarchies”—nested sets of cells, multi-celled organisms, and multi-species communities or ecosystems with ever greater complexity and capacity. Each individual functions both as a whole and a part of a greater whole.
Take our own bodies as an example. Each of us is a composite of more than 30 trillion individual living cells. Yet even these cells constitute less than half of our dry weight. The remainder consists of microorganisms, such as the enteric bacteria and yeasts of our gut that manufacture vitamins and help metabolize our food. These symbiotic creatures are as necessary to our survival and healthful function as our own cells. Each cell and microorganism in our body is an individual, self-directing entity, yet by joining together they are able as well to function as a single being with abilities far beyond those of its parts.
Throughout its life span, each organism constantly renews its physical structures through cell death and replacement. Ninety-eight percent of the atoms in our bodies are replaced each year. Yet the identity, function, and coherence of the body and its individual organs are self-maintained—suggesting that each cell, organ, and body possesses some degree of inner knowledge and awareness of both self and the larger whole of which it is a part.
The above was written in early 1999. Twenty years later, in what was referenced at the beginning of this, Korten gives voice to the way we must collectively go if we are to evolve to realize more of the unknown possibilities of existence we find ourselves here in this time and place to discover and create.
The political and economic democracy we seek cannot be easily characterized as either capitalist or socialist. It is a system of substantially self-reliant local economies composed of locally owned enterprises and community-secured safety nets with responsibilities shared by families, charities, and governments. Such a system facilitates self-organizing to create healthy, happy, and productive communities.
In our complex and interconnected world, this system will require national and global institutions responsive to the people’s will and well-being to support cooperation and sharing among communities, but the real power will be dispersed locally. There would be ample room for competition among local communities to be the most beautiful, healthy, democratic, creative, and generous. There is no place for colonizing the resources of others or for predatory corporations.
These communities will most likely feature cooperative and family ownership of businesses. They will also recognize the rights of nature and their shared responsibility to care for the commons and to share its gifts.
The rules of plutocracy evolved over thousands of years. We have far less time to come up with suitable rules for democratic alternatives. That search must quickly become a centerpiece of public discussion.
DiEM25 is a pan-European, cross-border movement of democrats. We believe that the European Union is disintegrating. Europeans are losing their faith in the possibility of European solutions to European problems. At the same time as faith in the EU is waning, we see a rise of misanthropy, xenophobia and toxic nationalism. If this development is not stopped, we fear a return to the 1930s. That is why we have come together despite our diverse political traditions—Green, radical left, liberal—in order to repair the EU. The EU needs to become a realm of shared prosperity, peace and solidarity for all Europeans. We must act quickly, before the EU disintegrates.
The vision Europe is currently suffering from five crises: debt, banks, poverty, low investment and migration. DiEM25 is the infrastructure which European democrats of all political persuasions will use in order to develop common answers to these crises. We also demand more fundamental change: EU institutions, which were initially designed to serve the industry, need to become fully transparent and accountable to European citizens. Our long-term vision is for Europeans to write a democratic constitution for the EU.
Speaking in Berlin on March 4, Varoufakis presents a lucid and practical summary of “What’s Wrong In Europe Today and How To Fix It Tomorrow Morning.” [youtube (19:02), TUC Radio audio (29:00)] and presents the Green New Deal for Europe and how it will tackle underemployment & involuntary migration.
Varoufakis has written on a wide range of subjects offering a cogent, deep analysis of our situation. Two examples available online in their entirety are: The Two Deadly Foes of Humanity’s Vital Space and The Globalising Wall (with Danae Stratou). From the opening of Two Deadly Foes:
Over the past 300 years, humanity has succeeded in pulling itself up by its bootstraps, establishing wondrous scientific projects and creating the technology and production lines that allowed us a glimpse of a bright future liberated from want. Nevertheless, the same path has led us to the edge of a precipice from which we are staring into a hideous abyss.
The key to rapid growth was a word beginning with C: commodification—the conversion of goods into commodities and their mass manufacture for profit. With the determination of an unscrupulous invader, for 300 years the market has been colonising more and more realms of human activity. It created new assets, like ingenious new forms of debt, and it fully conquered the Manufacture of Things. Then, more recently, it penetrated areas that it was ill equipped to treat with the due respect. It crossed several bridges too far.
Commodification entered the microcosm, altering the DNA of organisms in order to claim property rights over creations of age old evolution, of magnificent rain forests and of long lived communities of farmers. Soon commodification will take over the moon, even the sun, if it can. Once its greatest weapon, property rights, could no longer be secured by strong fences, but rather required innovative, complex contracts, humanity entered new, treacherous, uncharted territory.
And from the Preface of The Globalising Wall:
Fences have a longstanding relation both with liberal individualism and imperialism. But it was only after 1945 that walls took over from fences, with an unprecedented determination to divide. They spread like a bushfire from Berlin to Palestine, from the tablelands of Kashmir to the villages of Cyprus, from the Korean peninsula to the streets of Belfast. When the Cold War ended, we were told to expect their collapse. Instead, they grew taller, more impenetrable, longer. They began resembling a mighty Wall. They globalised. Their spectre is upon us from the West Bank to Kosovo, from the streets of Baghdad to the favelas of Rio, from the killing fields of old Ethiopia to the US-Mexico border. Globalisation was meant as their death knell, only it ended up strengthening them.
- What are the forces sustaining this Globalising Wall?
- How does it feel to live in its shadow?
As Maria Gilardin of TUC Radio points out, “Varoufakis has become one of the eloquent and best known critics of the unlimited economic growth systems in Europe and the US—that make the largest corporations and financial institutions major drivers of climate change.” His perspective on politics and economics is informed by his academic background and experience serving as Minister of Finance in Greece upon being elected to the Greek parliament as a member of the Syriza party from January to July 2015, a position he resigned from when Syriza broke its campaign promise to re-negotiate Greece’s debt and significantly curtail the austerity measures imposed on that country.
In May 2018 Varoufakis spoke on the subject of “Is Capitalism Devouring Democracy?” (youtube 1:48:08) Describing the first meeting he participated in of finance ministers in Europe after January 2015, Varoufakis at one point describes the extant reality of capital’s influence on so-called democratic governments.
I could see Wolfgang Schäuble, the German Finance Minister, he was looking at me with eyes that felt like laser beams and he gets the floor and he said, one sentence ... “Elections cannot be allowed to change economic policy.” Got it? My response was, This is excellent news to the Chinese Communist Party because they believe that too. I then came up with a proposal—this is why they hated me—very moderate and said, In that case Wolfgang, let’s ban elections in bankrupt countries. Let’s come out and declare that in the European Union you can only have democracy if you are a creditor country. If you're a debtor country, No democracy.
* * * * * *
In concert with its creation of Capitalism’s Invisible Army, LAWCAP’s decision at the close of the 1940s to start World War III in order to keep capitalism in business has, over the past 7 decades, resulted in the expanding dis-integration of our globally hegemonic civilization, industrial growth capitalism. In Silent Spring (1962), Rachel Carson identified human hubris and financial self-interest as the crux of the situation threatening all Life on Mother Earth. She dedicated the book to Albert Schweitzer quoting his wisdom, “Man has lost the capacity to foresee and to forestall, he will end by destroying the world.” In recent millenia constituting recorded human history, “Man,” collectively and tragically, did lose the capacity to foresee and forestall because the dominator model of social organization became embedded in the essence of most society’s relationships between the two halves—female and male—of humanity. In this way, the genius and limitless creativity each of us is born with, of mutual caring and sharing within an embedded partnership form of social organization, was suspended in the cultural evolution of our species. While the culture of domination and violence reinforce each other there are highly significant indicators that in our collective past, prior to recorded history, this kind of “power over” and control was not the operative form of human kind and human relationships. Again, from The Chalice & the Blade:
We know that art, particularly religious or mythical art, reflects not only peoples’ attitudes but also their particular form of culture and social organization. The Goddess-centered art we have been examining, with its striking absence of images of male domination or warfare, seems to have reflected a social order in which women, first as heads of clans and priestesses and later on in other important roles, played a central part, and in which both men and women worked together in equal partnership for the common good. If there was here no glorification of wrathful male deities or rulers carrying thunderbolts or arms, or of great conquerors dragging abject slaves about in chains, it is not unreasonable to infer it was because there were no counterparts for those images in real life.10 And if the central religious image was a woman giving birth and not, as in our time, a man dying on a cross, it would not be unreasonable to infer that life and the love of life—rather than death and the fear of death—were dominant in society as well as art. (pp. 20-21)
More than 5 decades after Silent Spring was published, our dominator system is advancing further into its terminal apex. Time has run out. It is no longer possible to defer acting on behalf of ALL our relatives here, including our single, indivisible, supremely gifted and fragile human family. We must determine what transformational adaption we can collectively create and implement to finally respond in this exceedingly late hour to the emergency of global overheat as well as the other pressing incoherence indicators that must likewise be addressed in kind. The possible outcomes include our societies collapsing and the extinction of our species.
As the abbreviated enumeration of runaway criminal policies directed by and serving U.S. Empire Corporate State interests in 2nd Mvmt above indicate, this is not a legitimate government serving the needs and aspirations of people, inextricably embedded in and utterly dependent upon the web of all Life Mother Earth conceives, bears, and nurtures. It is in fact wholly illegitimate given the federally sanctioned policies of murder, assassination, terrorism, and violation of the rights of humans—and all our other than human kin—with its relentless pursuit of endless so-called economic growth: still building massive infrastructure, still facilitating expansions in animal agriculture, still spending more on war-making than the next seven countries combined, still serving the entrenched corporate fossil fuel nexus, still making and implementing U.S. National Insecurity State of Mind policies by means of peddling fears of implacable, supremely evil enemies with an updated and largely unconscious U.S.-War-in-Vietnam-Era Mantra, It became necessary to destroy the Earth to save it, still bent on “modernizing” our nuclear weapons stockpile over the next 30 years with its projected costs of 1.2 trillion dollars, and still officially denying and ignoring the pressing reality of global overheat and its looming, unspeakable consequences. Willful U.S. criminal inaction on the ecological catastrophe threatening Life Security throughout Mother Earth requires nonviolent rebellion to change course away from the dead-end future of a mass extinction event while determining what options still exist to be acted upon in the face of this unfolding crisis era of ecological emergency we are by day sinking evermore deeply into.
The requirement for this regenerative process of collective involvement within our entire human family encompassing a truly democratic dynamic to determine best strategies to deal with and respond to the climate and ecological emergency becoming evermore dire can be a driver and catalyst for accelerating the shift from domination to partnership.
There are many complements to the nonviolent rebellion picking up steam described above. Some short films cover the art of creative push-back, a vital component of participatory engagement in moving along the continuum away from domination towards partnership: Zachariah Mampilly describes “How Protest is Redefining Democracy Around the World” (2017, 10:16), Julia Bacha summarizes her work on “How Women Wage Conflict Without Violence” (2016, 10:34), and Yanis Varoufakis covers how “Capitalism Will Eat Democracy—Unless We Speak Up” (2015, 19:08).
Some projects and sources addressing global overheat include: Indigenous Environmental Network, an alliance whose Shared Mission is to Protect the Sacredness of Earth Mother from contamination & exploitation by Respecting and Adhering to Indigenous Knowledge and Natural Law; Rainforest Action Network with its 2019 edition of massive report/compendium “Banking on Climate Change—Report Finds Global Banks Poured $1.9 Trillion into Fossil Fuel Financing Since the Paris Agreement was Adopted, with Financing on the Rise Each Year”; oil&gas 2.0 THREAT MAP covering the U.S.; Finance Watch Report Making Finance Serve Nature; Public Banking Institute, Public Banking Made Easy (film: 2:10); openDemocracy, “How could citizens’ assemblies be used to tackle climate change?”; World Wide Views, a methodology for global citizen deliberation.
Each year I receive and answer many hundreds of unsolicited letters from youth anxious to know what the little individual can do. One such letter from a young man named Michael—who is ten years old—asks whether I am a “doer or a thinker.” Although I never “tell” anyone what to do, I feel it quite relevant at this point to quote my letter to him explaining what I have been trying to do in the years since my adoption of my 1927-inaugurated self-disciplinary resolves. The letter, dated February 16, 1970, reads:
Thank you very much for your recent letter concerning “thinkers and doers.”
The things to do are: the things that need doing: that you see need to be done, and that no one else seems to see need to be done. Then you will conceive your own way of doing that which needs to be done—that no one else has told you to do or how to do it. This will bring out the real you that often gets buried inside a character that has acquired a superficial array of behaviors induced or imposed by others on the individual.
Try making experiments of anything you conceive and are intensely interested in. Don’t be disappointed if something doesn’t work. That is what you want to know—the truth about everything—and then the truth about combinations of things. Some combinations have such logic and integrity that they can work coherently despite non-working elements embraced by their system.
Whenever you come to a word with which you are not familiar, find it in the dictionary and write a sentence which uses that new word. Words are tools—and once you have learned how to use a tool you will never forget it. Just looking for the meaning of the word is not enough. If your vocabulary is comprehensive, you can comprehend both fine and large patterns of experience.
You have what is most important in life—initiative. Because of it, you wrote to me. I am answering to the best of my capability. You will find the world responding to your earnest initiative.
The political and economic systems and the political and economic leaders of humanity are not in final examination; it is the integrity of each individual human that is in final examination. On personal integrity hangs humanity’s fate.You can deceive others, you can deceive your brain-self, but you can’t deceive your mind-self—for mind deals only in the discovery of truth and the interrelationship of all the truths. The cosmic laws with which mind deals are noncorruptible.
Cosmic evolution is omniscient God comprehensively articulate.
More than ever, we find ourselves living in the time of Koyaanisqatsi, the Hopi word meaning “crazy life,” “life out of balance,” “life disintegrating,” and “a state of life that calls for another way of living.” May we all continually awaken to and be renewed by recognition of our participation in and partaking of life at this unique time of Koyaanisqatsi.
Imagine running out of imagine
Mistaking authority for power
Weaving lifes free spirit
Into patterns of control
Lines from a Mined Mind, p.259