We have a relative that is fighting the good fight against the plastics factory in Tacoma. She seems to be a good hearted soul, but she is so dismissive of jobs. (Funny how these places ONLY turn out 250 jobs. Those would be a big benefit to the people that were hired, to the community where they spend their money, and to the better lives for their children.) But we don't need that plant because RECYCLING (never mind that you can't combine plastic types like that) and ENVIRONMENT (somehow using an existing ex-aluminum plant would run the view of Mt Rainier).
I have a new theory. I've always read that civilizations fall because they get wealthy. They fall because people want "an easier life for their children". This is what you get. People who don't want "dirty" jobs. People don't understand that money for government programs comes from taxpayers. People who aren't afraid of .7% economic growth and think we can afford to blow off new jobs for stupid reasons.
At least, as Boomers, we did have some small education, by people who were raised in the culture of Western civilization. We have a generation today that reads pictures. I feel certain the next version of iOS will have stick drawings.Posted by Teri Pittman at January 30, 2016 12:49 PM
From the heart! Excellent essay. And very scary.
What we're observing now is not just happening by chance. It's being directed (and the first fool to call me a "conspiracy theorist" will be invited out to the parking lot).
Nikita Khruzchev predicted:
"You Americans are so gullible. No, you won’t accept communism outright, but we’ll keep feeding you small doses of socialism until you’ll finally wake up and find you already have communism. We won’t have to fight you. We’ll so weaken your economy until you’ll fall like overripe fruit into our hands."
Communist Jan Kozak described their strategy in And Not A Shot Is Fired. And it's always "two steps forward, one step back" for his fellow travelers. Even if they lose the next election or two, they never give up.
Total control is their goal, which was described by Plato a couple thousand years ago: a tiny aristocracy commanding a loyal miltary, and both overseeing the taxpaying proles/sheep.
But neither Kozak's fellow travelers, nor anyone else reading this will be among the new aristocracy. That's reserved for the UN, and for Bill Gates, George Soros, and similar special folks; a billion will get you into the club. During most of the USSR's existence only about 1% were Party members. The rest of us will be part of the 99%, and we will be expected to pay the freight. Dissenters will be re-educated. If they're lucky.
One of the central planks the eco-movement is currently using is the 'dangerous man-made global warming' scare. It is a complete hoax: there has been no global warming for almost twenty years now. But did that fact debunk the so-called 'science'?
No. It has openly morphed into the political arena, where that narrative originally began in quasi-secrecy. In fact, the whole enviro-eco-green movement is being centrally directed by the erstwhile soviets. 'Greens' preach 'sustainability', but without any definition. It's anti-science, thus perfect propaganda.
Now the "green" movement is focused on the 'runaway global warming and climate catastrophe' scare — despite the fact that the planet is continuing to enjoy a true "Goldilocks" global temperature: during the past century and a half, global temperatures have varied by less than ≈0.8ºC — an amazingly flat and unprecedented temperature range: just prior to our current Holocene, global temperatures fluctuated by TENS of whole degrees — both up and down, and within only a decade or two. Now that is scary!
So now every snowstorm is claimed to be proof of 'anthropogenic global warming'... and War is Peace... Freedom is Slavery... Ignorance is Strength...
'Diversity' is another tentacle of the controlling entity. Jurassic Park author and biologist Dr. Michael Crichton wrote:
This idea that the whole world is wired together is mass death. Every biologist knows that small groups in isolation evolve fastest. You put a thousand birds on an ocean island and they’ll evolve very fast. You put ten thousand on a big continent, and their evolution slows down.
Now, for our own species, evolution occurs mostly through our behaviour. We innovate new behaviour to adapt. And everybody on earth knows that innovation only occurs in small groups. Put three people on a committee and they may get something done. Ten people, and it gets harder. Thirty people, and nothing happens. Thirty million, it becomes impossible.
That’s the effect of mass media - it keeps anything from happening. Mass media swamps diversity. It makes every place the same. Bangkok or Tokyo or London: there’s a McDonald’s on one corner, a Benetton on another, a Gap across the street. Regional differences vanish. All differences vanish. In a mass-media world, there’s less of everything except the top ten books, records, movies, ideas.
People worry about losing species diversity in the rain forest. But what about intellectual diversity - our most necessary resource? That’s disappearing faster than trees. But we haven’t figured that out, so now we’re planning to put five billion people together in cyberspace. And it’ll freeze the entire species. Everything will stop dead in its tracks. Everyone will think the same thing at the same time. Global uniformity.
But just try to point out that 'diversity' isn't a good thing at your next cocktail party. You will be looked upon as an idiot, and they'll say in their own words what Maj. 'King' Kong (Slim Pickens) said in Dr. Strangelove:
“I’ve been to one world’s fair, a picnic and a rodeo and that’s the stupidest thing I ever heard."
In the novel "1984" George Orwell’s protagonist, Winston Smith, wonders if the State might declare “two plus two equals five” as a fact; he ponders whether, if everybody believes in it, does that make it true?
Your cocktail party friends really do believe that 2+2=5; that man-made global warming is a proven fact. Nothing you can say, and no evidence you can show them can penetrate their belief system. Now that's really scary!
The country has been thoroughly dumbed down by the gov't .edu industry. Now everyone just head-nods along with television news anchors when they pontificate with a straight face on "diversity" this-or-that, or "global warming" this-or-that. Critical thinking is not permitted for the general public. Their minds are closed tighter than a submarine hatch.
But the hoax is getting long in the tooth, and it's my reasonable expectation that ten months from now we will experience the rubber band effect: a radical pro-Constitution candidate, or a radical populist, will get elected as the antidote/reaction to the Obama/Hillary contingent (although at this point Hillary is toast).
Otherwise, we may see what Kipling foretold:
THE WRATH OF THE AWAKENED SAXON
by Rudyard Kipling
It was not part of their blood,
It came to them very late,
With long arrears to make good,
When the Saxon began to hate.
They were not easily moved,
They were icy -- willing to wait
Till every count should be proved,
Ere the Saxon began to hate.
Their voices were even and low.
Their eyes were level and straight.
There was neither sign nor show
When the Saxon began to hate.
It was not preached to the crowd.
It was not taught by the state.
No man spoke it aloud
When the Saxon began to hate.
It was not suddently bred.
It will not swiftly abate.
Through the chilled years ahead,
When Time shall count from the date...
That the Saxon began to hate.Posted by Smokey at January 30, 2016 1:05 PM
Welcome to the resistance, Gerard. Though I know you have been a member for some time now, this renunciation of the Boomer Generation is a classic of historical truth. Sending it far and wide. (with attribution, of course.)
I'm a member of the silent generation and our paths may well have crossed on the UC campus in 1966 or '67, as I was a Naval Aviation recruiter for northern California at that time. I recall the campus as seeming about as bizarre to me as the bar scene from Star Wars. To say that we were the center of zealous protests would be to put it mildly. None of my team really wanted to be there, but we did recruit many fine young men for Naval Aviation from Berkeley. They would see us being protested, pick up a flyer, and call us at our offices to come in for pre-testing.
I could not understand where or how students had become so brain washed until one day I had a conversation with a semi-rational protestor who kept referencing his Poli-Sci prof's teachings. That was when I knew for sure that the Commies were trying to subvert our young people. So, I've always been a member of the resistance and have never regretted it.Posted by Jimmy J. at January 30, 2016 3:26 PM
Tweaked this essay nine years later, yet still every bit as relevant. That is kinda sad.Posted by growler at January 30, 2016 3:59 PM
Very open,very brave.Posted by Thud at January 30, 2016 4:17 PM
Like you, I am also a member of the Boomer generation, born almost 9 months to the day after the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. I was disgusted by the antics of the protesters, unable to understand how someone could NOT love this country and all it stood for. Well, they didn't learn to hate this country in a vacuum, they learned it at the knees of their parents, aka Stanley Anne Durham, and professors in college. They aren't the ones who lost the Vietnam war, that noble cause of the Democrats who went in to "fight communism" while kneecapping the troops even as they fought. (and the kneecapping continues to this day) Who led the protesting hippies at the Chicago convention of '68 but pre-Boomers like Abbie Hoffman? Let's not forget Hanoi Jane Hilton, whom I have not forgiven to this day. Where did Hillary learn about Alinsky, at home or at college? Those being indoctrinated in college as "foot soldiers" of the revolution weren't raised in a vacuum. They had to learn it somewhere, and young minds are sooo malleable. I loathed the hippies and their stoned lifestyle, and everything they chanted for. I actually cried (and I don't cry easily), during the evacuation of Saigon, and for the first time in my life was ashamed of my country for deserting those who believed in us. It was not to be the last. Remember Carter and the Irani hostages, and the giving away of the Panama Canal? There was a brief pause during the Reagan years, then there the Bimbo eruptions and the sleaze years. And the entire time the media constantly pushing and pulling to the left, and mocking those who rejected their guidance. During the Bush years I actually worried about their sanity so vitriolic was against anything Bush: and the 180 degree turnaround to praising all things Obama. When and where did journalists learn to follow the Narrative and not the story, but in college? Now they teach the special snowflakes. Not all of us were brainless hippie protesters, chanting mindlessly. Some of us sactually became adults, raised responsible children to be responsible adults. Some of us were NOT hippies, not protestors, fought (and died) in Vietnam, became citizens who taught their children love and respect, while the squeaky wheels went to Washington to accomplish there what they could not accomplish in school, including journalists who wanted to make a difference. I didn't mean to go on so long, but I am so sick of being lumped in with and being defined by a rowdy, lawless generation who are the very antithesis of what most of us are today. The ones who never grew up are either still stoned, journalists, or politicians. Or bothPosted by lilo at January 30, 2016 8:15 PM
I thank Gerard and the commenters above.
Now, or still, a Winter Soldier
None more fine, none bolder
As simpler lives all smolder
The liberty phoenix rises, glows, no older.
I remember well the picture in Post, was it 1969? I was in a Post pic as well, as a member of Up With People, which believe it or not was a rather subversive group in its own right, sort of a Ralph Nader cult. That pic may have been in the same issue. I even recall thinking your haircut was a pretty cool version of the surfer cut I was trying to cultivate. Eventually threw away all the old magazines I had saved from that era, probably upon the realization that the era and the prospects it offered was rather bleak. Youth is wasted on the young. Viva la resistance.
Living as I do in a quaint fishing village in Florida that has been discovered of late, I see scores of retiring boomers from the northeast retiring here. Dressed like nine year olds, opening yoga centers and more dog and cat rescue centers than one can shake a stick at, it's a little depressing, but the fishing's still good.Posted by fodderwing at January 30, 2016 8:59 PM
It always amused me that with few exceptions, those professing the wonders of Communism, Socialism and the "radiant Future" never wanted to move to where they could live in the glorious splendor of those societies. When it was suggested to them that they should do so, howls of rage and invective were thrust in personal attacks as a response.
I wish they could have seen what I saw in the Nam; a village headman's wife raped in front of him and his kids, then his kids shot and finally his throat cut. the villagers were told they were next if they didn't have rice for the Cong next month. We were a LRRP patrol, way out numbered to do anything by watch. After that, no mercy for the Hero People of the Revolution.Posted by Vermont Woodchuck at January 31, 2016 4:28 AM
At the time (1960-70's)the baby boom generation was simply the latest manifestation of the elite's mocking and undermining of the middle-class, christian values that made and propped up American society. The ground had been prepared the decade before by the big four of the silent generation: Kinsey, Hefner, Ginsberg & Friedan who all realized that if one wanted to bore into the foundation of middle-class life one should do it through sex. Make abnormal and promiscuous sex normal and the pillars would come tumbling down, American society along with them. Of course, the Silents stood on the shoulders of the literary giants of the late nineteenth-early twentieth centuries. Read Melville's The Confidence Man, Lewis' Babbit or any of the Lost Generation writers and witness irony and pessimism win the day. The baby boomers, because there were so many, simply added their weight to the struggle. Who could resist sex, drugs and rock n roll. And now the bill is coming due, in more ways than one and I'm not sure we have the resources to pay it.Posted by chuck at January 31, 2016 6:05 AM
This essay is just another reason American Digest is my favorite site, Gerard. Truth spoken, of the bedrock kind, elegantly and powerfully offered up, and in which I find a kindred spirit of the age, myself a former radical atheist who spouted precisely the kind of political nihilistic nonsense you refer to here. Poetry or essay, I love your writing and consistently share it with others. Yes, Boomers, there is a God, and yes, there is a Day of Reckoning, whether it is within the scope of your personal reckoning or not. It's finally time to grow up.Posted by Mark Nicolas at January 31, 2016 7:00 AM
Spot on, Gerard. This article echoes one of the bomb-throwers at UC Berkeley, turned resistance fighter, David Horowitz, his book"Destructive Generation: Second Thoughts About The 60's".Posted by cmak at January 31, 2016 10:30 AM
Mr. Van der Leun: You speak--and so well!--for millions.Posted by Jerry at January 31, 2016 12:36 PM
"This thin gruel is what's being poured into us from Seattle, Washington to Washington, D.C."
This is right on Gerard, but it wasn't a thin gruel but an "Idiot Wind", a song Dylan was singing at about the same time that picture was taken of you at Berkeley.
"Idiot wind, from the Grand Coulee Dam to the Capitol"
"It's a wonder we can even feed ourselves"Posted by Denny at January 31, 2016 5:08 PM
Wrong then. Wrong now.
At least you're consistent.
And still strident.Posted by Arthurstone at February 1, 2016 12:31 PM
Art is back! Flamethrowing while making no point....again.
When I was young I thought a strong central government was a positive thing. Even when I heard the first reports of the FBI having a shoot out with Randy Weaver and his crew. Rednecks..deserved it, I am sure.
Then I slowly realized that not everybody in Government necessarily has good at heart, or at least a vastly different view of what "right and wrong" actually is.
Upon hearing the details of Weaver's wife shot in the jaw while holding her infant, and his son shot in the back I started having reservations about our Government and its competency level on all fronts.
Countless more assaults over time on personal rights, property rights and our inconvenient Constitution further solidified my belief in smaller government. Benghazi, Lois Lerner and most of the IRS now only underline my views developed through discernment of what happens with a too strong central government.
I evolved too.
The use of the words "Free" and "America" in the same sentence is a hoot.
The most caged, regulated, robbed by the political filth- losses to Burglary were surpassed by theft by police from innocents last year, people on the planet.
Quickly now. At this very moment in time what is you would do with yourself if you weren't at the mercy (and 'regulated and robbed") of gubmint?
And go back through your day, your week, and last year if you like and describe just how you are unable to do whatever it is you would do if you weren't under the foot of gubmint.
Thanks!Posted by Arthurstone at February 3, 2016 4:53 PM
This is exactly the problem Arthurstoneless, what he would do with his stolen money and time is none of you or your gubmint's fucking business.Posted by Denny at February 7, 2016 11:58 AM