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Corporate Globalization Resistance

Quotations That Make Us Think
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"Held to be a crime when committed by individuals, homicide is called a virtue when committed by the state."

St. Cyprian, Bishop of Carthage, 3rd century AD - Epistulae

*****

"The man who never looks into a newspaper is better informed than he who reads them; inasmuch as he who knows nothing is nearer to truth than he whose mind is filled with falsehoods and errors."

Thomas Jefferson

*****

"During times of universal deceit, telling the truth is revolutionary."

George Orwell

*****

"Throughout much of its history, the AFL-CIO and other U.S. labor organizations have worked with CIA and multi-national corporations to overthrow democratically-elected governments, collaborated with dictators against progressive labor movements, supported reactionary labor movements against progressive governments, worked with corporate America to organize racist and protectionist campaigns against foreign countries, and encouraged racist campaigns against immigrant workers."

Lee Siu Hin

*****

"No matter how paranoid or conspiracy-minded you are, what the government is actually doing is worse than you imagine."

William Blum

*****

"Conceit, arrogance and egotism are the essentials of patriotism.... Patriotism assumes that our globe is divided into little spots, each one surrounded by an iron gate. Those who had the fortune of being born on some particular spot, consider themselves better, nobler, grander, more intelligent than the living beings inhabiting any other spot. It is, therefore, the duty of everyone living on that chosen spot to fight, kill, and die in the attempt to impose his superiority upon all others."

Emma Goldman

*****

"Economic hit men (EHMs) are highly paid professionals who cheat countries around the globe out of trillions of dollars. They funnel money from the World Bank, the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), and other foreign "aid" organizations into the coffers of huge corporations and the pockets of a few wealthy families who control the planet's natural resources. Their tools include fraudulent financial reports, rigged elections, payoffs, extortion, sex, and murder. They play a game as old as empire, but one that has taken on new and terrifying dimensions during this time of globalization. I should know; I was an EHM."

John Perkins, Confessions of an Economic Hit Man

*****

"[Ronald] Reagan ... was most definitely a global empire builder, a servant of the corporatocracy... He would cater to the men who shuttled back and forth from corporate CEO offices to bank boards and into the halls of government. He would serve the men who appeared to serve him but who in fact ran the government - men like Vice President George H. W. Bush, Secretary of State George Shultz, Secretary of Defense Caspar Weinberger, Richard Cheney, Richard Helms, and Robert McNamara. He would advocate what those men wanted: an America that controlled the world and all its resources, a world that answered to the commands of that America, a U.S. military that would enforce the rules as they were written by America, and an international trade and banking system that supported America as CEO of the global empire."

John Perkins, Confession of an Economic Hit Man

*****

"All democracies turn into dictatorships - but not by coup. The people give their democracy to a dictator, whether it's Julius Caesar or Napoleon or Adolf Hitler. Ultimately, the general population goes along with the idea... That's the issue that I've been exploring: How did the Republic turn into the Empire ... and how does a democracy become a dictatorship?

Star Wars fimmaker George Lucas, at Cannes film festival 2005

*****

"While free markets tend to democratize a society, unfettered capitalism leads invariably to corporate control of government."

Robert Kennedy. Jr. in May 13, 2005 speech at The Presidio in San Francisco

*****

 

"How far have we gone where people don't want to air their views for fear of ending up on some kind of terrorist watch list?"

David Rowell, editor of The Travel Insider magazine about air travel watchlists and dissent

*****

"To understand free speech means freedom to speak what others do not like and even cannot stand to hear? ... Tolerating what you like is hardly a major achievement. Hitler tolerated what he liked. So did Stalin. Idi Amin did too. So did Genghis Khan, the Shah, and Henry Kissinger. Free speech only becomes an issue when someone says what others don't want to hear."

Michael Albert

*****

"We were not born critical of existing society. There was a moment in our lives (or a month, or a year) when certain facts appeared before us, startled us, and then caused us to question beliefs that were strongly fixed in our consciousness-embedded there by years of family prejudices, orthodox schooling, imbibing of newspapers, radio, and television."

Howard Zinn

*****

"There is a hard core of people in the United States who will not be moved, whatever facts you present, from their conviction that this nation means only to do good, and almost always does good, in the world, that it is the beacon of liberty and freedom."

Howard Zinn

*****

"Although tyranny, because it needs no consent, may successfully rule over foreign peoples, it can stay in power only if it destroys first of all the national institutions of its own people."

Hannah Arendt, The Origins of Totalitarianism (1951)

*****

"Change comes from a degree of discomfort that allows for and spurs thought and action."

William Blum

*****

"To initiate a war of aggression ... is not only an international crime, it is the supreme international crime, differing only from other war crimes in that it contains within itself the accumulated evil of the whole."

International Military Tribunal at Nuremberg, Germany - 1946

*****

"Look, if you think any American official is going to tell you the truth, then you're stupid. Did you hear that? - stupid."

Arthur Sylvester, Assistant Secretary of Defense for Public Affairs, 1965

*****

" The news and truth are not the same thing. "

Walter Lippmann

*****

"This [the U.S. Constitution] is likely to be administered for a course of years and then end in despotism... when the people shall become so corrupted as to need despotic government, being incapable of any other."

Benjamin Franklin

*****

"America will never be destroyed from the outside. If we falter, and lose our freedoms, it will be because we destroyed ourselves."

Abraham Lincoln

*****
"If fascism ever came to the United States, it would be wrapped in an American flag."

Huey Long

*****

"fascism - A system of government that exercises a dictatorship of the extreme right, typically through the merging of state and business leadership, together with belligerent nationalism."

The American Heritage Dictionary, 1983

*****

"Fascism is on the march today in America. Millionaires are marching to the tune. It will come in this country unless a strong defense is set up by all liberal and progressive forces... A clique of U.S. industrialists is hell-bent to bring a fascist state to supplant our democratic government, and is working closely with the fascist regime in Germany and Italy. Aboard ship a prominent executive of one of America's largest financial corporations told me point blank that if the progressive trend of the Roosevelt administration continued, he would be ready to take definite action to bring fascism to America."

former ambassador to Germany William Dodd, 1938

*****

"We live in a nation hated abroad and frightened at home. A place in which we can reasonably refer to the American Republic in the past tense. A country that has moved into a post-constitutional era, no longer a nation of laws but an autotocracy run by law breakers, law evaders and law ignorers. A nation governed by a culture of impunity ... a culture in which corruption is no longer a form of deviance but the norm. We all live in a Mafia neighborhood now."

Sam Smith

*****

"The twentieth century has been characterized by three developments of great political importance: the growth of democracy, the growth of corporate power, and the growth of corporate propaganda as a means of protecting corporate power against democracy."

Alex Carey

*****

"The point of public relations slogans like "Support our troops" is that they don't mean anything... That's the whole point of good propaganda. You want to create a slogan that nobody's going to be against, and everybody's going to be for. Nobody knows what it means, because it doesn't mean anything. Its crucial value is that it diverts your attention from a question that does mean something: Do you support our policy? That's the one you're not allowed to talk about."

Noam Chomsky

*****

"Maybe this time the voters chose what they actually want: Nationalism, pre-emptive war, order not justice, "safety" through torture, backlash against women and gays, a gulf between haves and have-nots, government largesse for their churches and a my-way-or-the-highway President."

Katha Pollitt on the results of the 2004 election

*****

"The biggest political joke in America is that we have a liberal press. It's a joke taken seriously by a surprisingly large number of people... The myth of the liberal press has served as a political weapon for conservative and right-wing forces eager to discourage critical coverage of government and corporate power ... Americans now have the worst of both worlds: a press that, at best, parrots the pronouncements of the powerful and, at worst, encourages people to be stupid with pseudo-news that illuminates nothing but the bottom line."

Mark Hertzgaard

*****

"Once the war against Saddam begins, we expect every American to support our military, and if they can't do that, to shut Up."

Bill O'Reilly, Fox News

*****

" The crisis of modern democracy is a profound one. Free elections, a free press and an independent judiciary mean little when the free market has reduced them to commodities available on sale to the highest bidder."

Arundhati Roy

*****

"Television is altering the meaning of "being informed" by creating a species of information that might properly be called disinformation... Disinformation does not mean false information. It means misleading information - misplaced, irrelevant, fragmented or superficial information - information that creates the illusion of knowing something, but which in fact leads one away from knowing."

Neil Postman

*****

"NPR and PBS at a national level tend to provide a bland variant of mainstream and conventional journalism, comparable to what's on the commercial networks, especially on highly sensitive matters such as the economy and the U.S. role in the world. Public broadcasting is so obsessed with conservative criticism, even more than commercial news media journalists are, that it bends over backwards to appease the Right and appear "balanced."

Robert McChesney

*****

"24.9 percent of American children live in poverty, while the proportions in Germany, France and Italy are 8.6, 7.4 and 10.5 percent. And once born on the wrong side of the tracks, Americans are more likely to stay there than their counterparts in Europe. Those born to better-off families are more likely to stay better off. America is developing an aristocracy of the rich and a serfdom of the poor - the inevitable result of a twenty-year erosion of its social contract."

Will Hutton

*****

"To oppose the policies of a government does not mean you are against the country or the people that the government supposedly represents. Such opposition should be called what it really is: democracy, or democratic dissent, or having a critical perspective about what your leaders are doing. Either we have the right to democratic dissent and criticism of these policies or we all lie down and let the leader, the Fuhrer, do what is best, while we follow uncritically, and obey whatever he commands. That's just what the Germans did with Hitler, and look where it got them."

Michael Parenti

*****

"Selective Service has been registering young men for over 20 years and at any moment the president can go to Congress and ask them to reauthorize conscription for a male combat draft for ages 18-25. All that is needed is a short, "trigger" resolution and the draft for men 18 to 25 is back."

from blatanttruth.org

*****

"We're not in the business of providing news and information, We're simply in the business of selling our customers' products. "

Clear Channel CEO Lowry Mays

*****

"Only the grand scale and technocratic impersonality of the crimes conceived and directed by the [U.S.] ruling elite acting under cover of state authority distinguish them from garden variety killers."

Darrell Hamamoto

*****

"Americans cannot escape a certain responsibility for what is done in our name around the world. In a democracy, even one as corrupted as ours, ultimate authority rests with the people. We empower the government with our votes, finance it with our taxes, bolster it with our silent acquiescence. If we are passive in the face of America's official actions overseas, we in effect endorse them."

Mark Hertzgaard

*****

"Media criticism does exist in America. But by and large, it is not citizen-based criticism designed to make media a better source of information in a democracy. Instead, it is a cynical manipulation of the discourse designed to silence even the mildest dissent from the conservative, militantly pro-corporate dogma that has come to pass for news in an era when "reporters" brag about the size of their American-flag lapel pins."

Robert McChesney and John Nichols

*****

"Cuba has ... been condemned for not allowing its people to flee the island. That so many want to leave Cuba is treated as proof that Cuban socialism is a harshly repressive system, rather than that the U.S. embargo has made life difficult in Cuba. That so many millions more want to leave capitalist countries like Mexico, Nigeria, Poland, El Salvador, Philippines, South Korea, Macedonia, and others too numerous to list is never treated as grounds for questioning the free-market system that inflicts such misery on the Third World."

Michael Parenti

*****

"The era of manufacturing consent has given way to the era of manufacturing news. Soon media newsrooms will drop the pretense, and start hiring theater directors instead of journalists."

Arundhati Roy

*****

"While vast sums of money are being siphoned off into hidden [military] coffers, Americas schools, hospitals and public services are facing cutbacks and closures."

Representative Henry Waxman

*****

"The United States is a society in which people not only can get by without knowing much about the wider world but are systematically encouraged not to think independently or critically and instead to accept the mythology of the United States as a benevolent, misunderstood giant as it lumbers around the world trying to do good."

Robert Jensen, Citizens of Empire

*****

"It's time for our business and political leaders to help redefine morality beyond sex, drugs, and rock and roll to include lying, hypocrisy, and callous indifference to those in need."

Arianna Huffington

*****

"If the test of patriotism comes only by reflexively falling into lockstep behind the leader whenever the flag is waved, then what we have is a formula for dictatorship, - not democracy... But the American way is to criticize and debate openly, not to accept unthinkingly the doings of government officials of this or any other country."

Michael Parenti

*****

"If the U.S. really believes that supporting terrorists makes you as guilty as the terrorists themselves, then it would have to put on trial most of its military and political leadership over the last handful of administrations, and more."

Peter McClaren

*****

"The media want to maintain their intimate relation to state power. They want to get leaks, they want to get invited to the press conferences. They want to rub shoulders with the Secretary of State, all that kind of business. To do that, you've got to play the game, and playing the game means telling their lies, serving as their disinformation apparatus."

Noam Chomsky

*****

"An alternative [U.S. foreign] policy offering real security would require ending the support of oppressive rulers in the Middle East and elsewhere, pursuing a more balanced approach to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, changing our oil-dependent energy policy, and replacing the drive for overwhelming global military dominance with policies for the peaceful prevention of atrocities and deadly conflict."

Friends Committee on National Legislation

*****

" Patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel. "

Samuel Johnson (1709-1784) English author and social critic

*****

"There is no doubt that if we lived in a police state, it would be easier to catch terrorists. If we lived in a country where the police were allowed to search your home at any time for any reason; if we lived in a country where the government is entitled to open your mail, eavesdrop on your phone conversations, or intercept your e-mail communications; if we lived in a country where people could be held indefinitely based ... on mere suspicion that they are up to no good, the government would probably discover and arrest more terrorists, or would-be terrorists.... But that wouldn't be a country in which we would want to live."

Senator Russ Feingold

*****

"The fact that we've been a great democracy doesn't mean we will automatically keep being one if we keep waving the flag."

Norman Mailer

*****

"Those who own the country ought to govern it."

John Jay, first chief justice of the United States, 1787

*****

"Iraq was the target because neoconservatives wanted to remake the governments of the Middle East, to secure long-term US. access to oil, to open the economies to American investment and to protect Israel through installation of governments friendly to the United States."

David Moberg

*****

"The communists had Pravda. Republicans have Fox."

MoveOn.org ad

*****

"In a media universe where you're likely to find right-wing conservatives on ABC, Fox, or NPR, the facts don't matter; only the framing. And in the hands of biased pundits posing as objective journalists, the framing is always going to be the same: promilitary, pro-government, and pro-war."

David Potorti, in book 'September 11th Families for Peaceful Tomorrows'

*****

"The United States is the world's largest consumer of oil .... Much of the world's oil lies beneath Iraq and its Gulf neighbors... experts say oil played a significant role in the decision to confront Iraq."

Council on Foreign Relations

*****

"This is not about oil, and anyone who thinks that is badly misunderstanding the situation."

US Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld

*****

"The trauma of 9/11 stimulated infinite possibilities for worry - some quite plausible, but most inspired by remote what-if fantasies. A society bingeing on fear makes itself vulnerable to far more profound forms of destruction than terror attacks. The "terrorism war", like a nostalgic echo of the cold war, is using these popular fears to advance a different agenda - the re-engineering of American life through permanent mobilization."

William Greider

*****

"A terrorist is someone who has a bomb but doesn't have an air force."

William Blum

*****

"For the third time in the last hundred years, the U.S. has invaded and occupied Haiti. Working behind the scenes, the U.S. conducted a destabilization campaign aimed at toppling the government of Jean-Bertrand Aristide. This is a message to the rest of the region: If you don't obey, the U.S. will impose sanctions, overthrow your government, install a client regime, and support death squads to crush any resistance."

Ashley Smith

*****

"Democracy is not about trust; it is about distrust. It is about accountability, exposure, open debate, critical challenge, and popular input and feedback from the citizenry. It is about responsible government. We have to get our fellow Americans to trust their leaders less and themselves more, trust their own questions and suspicions, and their own desire to know what is going on."

Michael Parenti

*****

"To become informed and hold government accountable, the general public needs to obtain news that is comprehensive yet interesting and understandable, that conveys facts and outcomes, not cosmetic images and airy promises. But that is not what the public demands."

Eric Alterman

*****

"The United States is the greatest threat to world peace, and has been for a long time, and not merely because it is the world's only superpower. Equally important, the United States is also far more disposed to use its power than any other powerful nation currently is. Though Americans are culturally and emotionally blind to the fact, the mere intrusion of US power is, in and of itself, destabilizing."

T.D. Allman

*****

"The corporations don't have to lobby the government any more. They are the government."

Jim Hightower

*****

"The men and women who enlist in this country's military [should] be told the truth that they are not protecting the United States, they are and always have been protecting corporate interests."

Chante Wolf, Veterans for Peace activist

*****

"The job of the President is to set the agenda and the job of the press is to follow the agenda that the leadership sets."

Lawrence Grossman - longtime head of PBS and NBC News

*****

"[The ruling elites] know who their enemies are, and their enemies are the people, the people at home and the people abroad. Their enemies are anybody who wants more social justice, anybody who wants to use the surplus value of society for social needs rather than for individual class greed, that's their enemy."

Michael Parenti

*****

"From 1945 to 2003, the United States attempted to overthrow more than 40 foreign governments, and to crush more than 30 populist-nationalist movements fighting against intolerable regimes. In the process, the US bombed some 25 countries, caused the end of life for several million people, and condemned many millions more to a life of agony and despair."

William Blum

*****

"War, we have come to believe, is a spectator sport. The military and the press ... have turned war into a vast video arcade game. Its very essence - death - is hidden from public view."

Chris Hedges

*****

"A tiny portion of the population controls the lion's share of the wealth and most of the command positions of state, manufacturing, banking, investment, publishing, higher education, philanthropy, and media... these individuals exercise a preponderant influence over what is passed off as public information and democratic discourse."

Michael Parenti

*****

"The media serve the interests of state and corporate power, which are closely interlinked, framing their reporting and analysis in a manner supportive of established privilege and limiting debate and discussion accordingly."

Noam Chomsky

*****

"[U.S.] domestic policy ... has focused on creating a massive welfare state for corporations even as the minimal welfare state benefiting the majority of the people was dismantled."

Lawrence Shoup

 

"Media manipulation in the U.S. today is more efficient than it was in Nazi Germany, because here we have the pretense that we are getting all the information we want. That misconception prevents people from even looking for the truth."

Mark Crispin Miller

*****

"If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it. The lie can be maintained only for such time as the State can shield the people from the political, economic and/or military consequences of the lie. It thus becomes vitally important for the State to use all of its powers to repress dissent, for the truth is the mortal enemy of the lie, and thus by extension, the truth is the greatest enemy of the State."

Joseph Goebbels, German Minister of Propaganda, 1933-1945

*****

"This country is in the grip of a President who was not elected, who has surrounded himself with thugs in suits who care nothing about human life abroad or here, who care nothing about freedom abroad or here, who care nothing about what happens to the earth... The so-called war on terrorism is not only a war on innocent people in other countries, but it is also a war on the people of the United States: a war on our liberties, a war on our standard of living. The wealth of the country is being stolen from the people and handed over to the superrich. The lives of our young are being stolen. And the thieves are in the White House."

Howard Zinn

*****

"George Bush and corporate America are intent on eliminating taxes on all capital incomes. Nor do they care if record budget deficits are the result. Many of their more right-wing friends, including those in Congress, actually want larger deficits. They see chronic, record deficits as producing the budget crisis necessary to use as an excuse to privatize Social Security and dismantle what remains of the Roosevelt New Deal programs of the 1930s."

Jack Rasmus

*****

"We are the only advanced nation without a national system of subsidized health care."

Elliott Currie, Crime and Punishment in America

*****

"With each newly minted crisis, US leaders roll out the same time-tested scenario. They start demonizing a foreign leader ... charging them with being communistic or otherwise dictatorial, dangerously aggressive, power hungry, genocidal, given to terrorism or drug trafficking, ready to deny us access to vital resources, harboring weapons of mass destruction, or just inexplicably "anti-American" and "anti-West." Lacking any information to the contrary, the frightened public ... are swept along."

Michael Parenti

*****

"[The Right] lie with impunity. Let's face it. They're liars. They lied about the reason they took our sons and daughters to war. They spend millions of dollars in campaign ads saying they are for a prescription drug benefit under Medicare while they work to destroy Medicare and replace it with private plans and HMOs. They call their dirty air legislation "Clear Skies" and their plan to give the timber companies our trees, "Healthy Forests." They call their job-killing economic program a "jobs program." They say they are for peace when they are for war. Millions of children are left behind under their miserly "No Child Left Behind" education bill. They tout a child tax credit for working families and then silently drop it in favor of more tax cuts for millionaires."

Rep. Jan Schakowsky

*****

"When a republic's most venerable institutions no longer operate as they were intended, it becomes possible for small cabals to usurp power, and, while keeping the forms, corrupt the function of those institutions for their own ends. Looking at things that way, the George W. Bush presidency has been both result and symptom of the decadence of America's constitutional mechanisms."

T.D. Allman

*****

"Where did this idea come from that everybody deserves free education, free medical care, free whatever? It comes from Moscow, from Russia. It comes straight out of the pit of hell."

Texas State Representative Debbie Riddle of Houston

*****

"Somebody's paying the corporations that destroyed Iraq and the corporations that are rebuilding it. They're getting paid by the American taxpayer in both cases. So we pay them to destroy the country, and then we pay them to rebuild it. Those are gifts from U.S. taxpayer to U.S. corporations..."

Noam Chomsky

 

"The U.S. record of war crimes has been, from the nineteenth century to the present, a largely invisible one, with no government, no political leaders, no military officials, no lower-level operatives held accountable for criminal actions... Anyone challenging this mythology is quickly marginalized, branded a traitor or Communist or terrorist or simply a lunatic beyond the pale of reasonable discussion."

Carl Boggs

*****

"America's punitive and reactive response to crime is an integral part of the new social Darwinism, the criminal justice counterpart of an increasingly harsh attack on living standards and social supports, especially for the poor ... America [is] a society in which a permanent state of social disintegration is held in check only by the creation of a swollen apparatus of confinement and control that has no counterpart in our own history or in any other industrial democracy."

Elliott Currie, Crime and Punishment in America

*****

"The quest for homeland security is heading ... toward the quasi-militarization of everyday life ... If danger might lurk anywhere, maybe everything must be protected and policed."

William Greider

*****

"Cheap labor has always been at the heart of U.S.-Haitian relations, ever since the Haitian Revolution in 1804. It was actually a slave rebellion, the first and still the only successful one in modern history. The U.S. sided with French colonialism as the U.S. economy was based on slavery at the time and Haiti represented the first "dangerous example."

Ricky Baldwin

*****

"Expecting FOX News to report real news is about as silly as waiting for George Bush and Dick Cheney to tell the truth... Americans care, but it's tough to care when you don't know what's going on. That ignorance is what the warmakers count on and what the corporate media delivers."

Amy Goodman

*****

"The U.S. continues to rank last among developed nations in official [international] development assistance, giving only 0.12% of GNP."

Friends Committee on National Legislation

*****

"The hidden hand of the market will never work without a hidden fist - McDonald's cannot flourish without McDonnell Douglas ..."

Thomas L. Friedman, New York Times

*****

"For the media owners, allegations of a liberal bias make it easier for them to impose the conservative bias they prefer. For the pseudoliberals who work in the media system, confessing to a liberal bias is far more comfortable than admitting that they've sold out their beliefs for a nice salary. It's only because the mainstream media is so conservative that all these right-wing pundits can make accusations of liberal bias without opposition."

John K . Wilson

*****

" The political leadership of this country, as exemplified by the campaign positions of Bush and Kerry, has become so obsessed with our own security fears and so convinced of our own virtue that it has very little to offer in the way of positive socioeconomic development initiatives. To most of the people of Latin America, Africa and Asia, the United States has largely become irrelevant to their hopes for a better future -- except as a potential market for some of their goods or as a source of outsourced jobs."

Sherle Schewenninger

*****

" Few trends could so thoroughly undermine the very foundations of our free society as the acceptance by corporate officials of a social responsibility other than to make as much money for their stockholders as possible. "

Milton Friedman, neoliberal economist

*****

"Political discussion in the United States is usually restricted to the moderate to conservative range that precludes discussion of class conflict. If "class warfare" is mentioned, it is because a conservative wants to suggest that certain matters should be kept off-limits in American political discussion"

Steve Brouwer

*****

"Americans tend to believe they have the best health care in the world, but in truth it is a second-rate system and destined to get a lot worse and much more expensive."

Donald Barlett and James Steele

*****

"[American leaders] are perhaps not so much immoral as they are amoral. It's not that they take pleasure in causing so much death and suffering. It's that they just don't care ... the same that could be said about a sociopath. As long as the death and suffering advance the agenda of the empire, as long as the right people and the right corporations gain wealth and power and privilege and prestige, as long as the death and suffering aren't happening to them or people close to them ... then they just don't care about it happening to other people, including the American soldiers whom they throw into wars and who come home - the ones who make it back alive - with Agent Orange or Gulf War Syndrome eating away at their bodies. American leaders would not be in the positions they hold if they were bothered by such things."

William Blum

*****

"What happened was the gradual habituation of the people, little by little, to be governed by surprise, to receiving decisions deliberated in secret; to believing that the situation was so complicated that the government had to act on information which the people could not understand, or so dangerous that, even if people could understand it, it could not be released because of national security ...

To live in the process is absolutely not to notice it -- please try to believe me -- unless one has a much greater degree of political awareness, acuity, than most of us ever had occasion to develop. Each step was so small, so inconsequential, so well explained or, on occasion, regretted.

Believe me this is true. Each act, each occasion is worse than the last, but only a little worse. You wait for the next and the next. You wait for one shocking occasion, thinking that others, when such a shock comes, will join you in resisting somehow.

Suddenly it all comes down, all at once. You see what you are, what you have done, or, more accurately, what you haven't done (for that was all that was required of most of us: that we did nothing) ... You remember everything now, and your heart breaks. Too late. You are compromised beyond repair. "

German professor after World War II describing the rise of Nazism to a journalist

*****

"The U.S. is a signatory to nine multilateral treaties that it has either blatantly violated or gradually subverted. The Bush Administration is now outright rejecting a number of those treaties, and in doing so, places global security in jeopardy, as other nations feel entitled to do the same. The rejected treaties include: The Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT), the Treaty Banning Antipersonnel Mines, the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court (ICC), a protocol to create a compliance regime for the Biological Weapons Convention (BWC), the Kyoto Protocol on global warming, and the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty (ABM). The U.S. is also not complying with the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), the Chemical Weapons Commission (CWC), the BWC, and the U.N. framework Convention on Climate Change."

Project Censored 2005

*****

"The moment war is declared... the mass of the people, through some spiritual alchemy, become convinced that they have willed and executed the deed themselves. They then, with the exception of a few malcontents, proceed to allow themselves to be regimented, coerced, deranged in all the environments of their lives, and turned into a solid manufactory of destruction toward whatever other people may have, in the appointed scheme of things, come within the range of the Government's disapprobation...

The State is the organization of the herd to act offensively or defensively against another herd similarly organized...

War is the health of the State. It automatically sets in motion throughout society those irresistible forces for uniformity, for passionate cooperation with the Government in coercing into obedience the minority groups and individuals which lack the larger herd sense...

But in general, the nation in wartime attains a uniformity of feeling, a hierarchy of values culminating at the undisputed apex of the State ideal, which could not possibly be produced through any other agency than war. Loyalty-or mystic devotion to the State-becomes the major imagined human value...

In a nation at war, every citizen identifies himself with the whole, and feels immensely strengthened in that identification. The purpose and desire of the collective community live in each person who throws himself wholeheartedly into the cause of war...

It cannot be too firmly realized that war is a function of States and not of nations, indeed that it is the chief function of States...

War is the health of the State. Only when the State is at war does the modern society function with that unity of sentiment, simple uncritical patriotic devotion, cooperation of services, which have always been the ideal of the State lover..."

Randolph Bourne, "The State", 1918

*****

"Free and responsible government by popular consent just can't exist without an informed public."

Bill Moyers at first ever National Conference on Media Reform in Madison, Wisconsin. November 2003

 

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"Four sorrows ... are certain to be visited on the United States. Their cumulative effect guarantees that the U.S. will cease to resemble the country outlined in the Constitution of 1787. First, there will be a state of perpetual war, leading to more terrorism against Americans wherever they may be and a spreading reliance on nuclear weapons among smaller nations as they try to ward off the imperial juggernaut. Second is a loss of democracy and Constitutional rights as the presidency eclipses Congress and is itself transformed from a co-equal 'executive branch' of government into a military junta. Third is the replacement of truth by propaganda, disinformation, and the glorification of war, power, and the military legions. Lastly, there is bankruptcy, as the United States pours its economic resources into ever more grandiose military projects and shortchanges the education, health, and safety of its citizens."

Chalmers Johnson, Sorrows of Empire

*****

"Individuals have international duties which transcend the national obligations of obedience ... Therefore [individual citizens] have the duty to violate domestic laws to prevent crimes against peace and humanity from occurring."

Nuremberg War Crimes Tribunal, 1950

*****

"Those in power are blind devotees to private enterprise. They accept that degree of socialism implicit in the vast subsidies to the military-industrial-complex, but not that type of socialism which maintains public projects for the disemployed and the unemployed alike."

William O. Douglas, former U.S. Supreme Court Justice, 1969

*****

"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has."

Margaret Mead

*****

" Many of us regard ourselves as mildly liberal or centrist politically, voice fairly pleasant sentiments about our poor children, contribute money to send poor kids to summer camp, feel benevolent. We're not nazis; we're nice people. We read sophisticated books. We go to church. We go to synagogue. Meanwhile, we put other people's children into an economic and environmental death zone. We make it hard for them to get out. We strip the place bare of amenities. And we sit back and say to ourselves, "Well, I hope that they don't kill each other off. But if they do, it's not my fault."

Jonathan Kozol, educator and author

*****

" The range of debate between the dominant U.S. [political] parties tends to closely resemble the range of debate within the business class. "

Robert McChesney, author and media critic

*****

"Quite simply, there can be no popular sovereignty without a real belief in the value of government. If government does not assume and carry out public responsibilities, less accountable institutions such as the corporation will do the job in their own self-interest."

Charles Derber, Corporation Nation

*****

"They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety."

Benjamin Franklin, 1759

*****

"If those in charge of our society - politicians, corporate executives, and owners of press and television - can dominate our ideas, they will be secure in their power. They will not need soldiers patrolling the streets. We will control ourselves."

Howard Zinn, historian and author

*****

"The goal of conservative rulers around the world, led by those who occupy the seats of power in Washington, is the systematic rollback of democratic gains, public services, and common living standards around the world."

Michael Parenti

*****

" To accept opinions is to gain the good solid feeling of being correct without having to think. "

C. Wright Mills - from the book The Power Elite

*****

"Propaganda is to a democracy what violence is to a dictatorship."

William Blum - Rogue State, on how governments control their citizens

*****

" The only way to abolish war is to make peace heroic."

John Dewey, American philosopher and educator, 1859-1952

*****

" It is only when a society shares caring values that its people can feel secure. "

Michael Lerner, philosopher, psychologist, author

*****

"The only thing worth globalizing is dissent."

Arundhati Roy, author

*****

"In the United States, both the upper levels of the Republican and Democratic Parties are in the pay of the corporate media and communication giants."

Robert McChesney and John Nichols, media critics and authors

*****

" The most unpardonable sin in society is independence of thought."

Emma Goldman, American anarchist and feminist, 1869-1940

*****

"For the last fifty years we've been supporting right-wing governments, and that is a puzzlement to me...I don't understand what there is in the American character... that almost automatically, even when we have a liberal President, we support fascist dictatorships or are tolerant towards them."

William Shirer, author

*****

"No form of government, once in power, can be trusted to limit its own ambition, to extend freedom and to wither away. This means that it is up to the citizenry, those outside of power, to engage in permanent combat with the state, short of violent, escalatory revolution, but beyond the gentility of the ballot-box, to insure justice, freedom and well being."

Howard Zinn, on the need for dissent and non-violent protest

*****

" I am astonished each time I come to the U.S. by the ignorance of a high percentage of the population, which knows almost nothing about Latin America or about the world. It's quite blind and deaf to anything that may happen outside the frontiers of the U.S..

Eduardo Galeano, Latin American writer and historian

*****

" When everyone is thinking the same, no one is thinking."

John Wooden

*****

"To provide its happy people with perpetual fun is now the deepest purpose of Western civilization."

Jeremy Seabrook, Third World Network

*****

" With unfailing consistancy, U.S. intervention has been on the side of the rich and powerful of various nations at the expense of the poor and needy. Rather than strengthening democracies, U.S. leaders have overthrown numerous democratically elected governments or other populist regimes in dozens of countries ... whenever these nations give evidence of putting the interests of their people ahead of the interests of multinational corporate interests."

Michael Parenti, political scientist and author

*****

" If an American is concerned only about his nation, he will not be concerned about the peoples of Asia, Africa, or South America. Is this not why nations engage in the madness of war without the slightest sense of penitence? Is this not why the murder of a citizen of your own nation is a crime, but the murder of citizens of another nation in war is an act of heroic virtue? "

Martin Luther King, Jr.

*****

"The only thing worth globalizing is dissent."

Arundhati Roy, author

*****

"There is no reason to accept the doctrines crafted to sustain power and privilege, or to believe that we are constrained by mysterious and unknown social laws. These are simply decisions made within institutions that are subject to human will and that must face the test of legitimacy. And if they do not meet the test, they can be replaced by other institutions that are more free and more just, as has happened often in the past."

Noam Chomsky, American linguist and US media and foreign policy critic

*****

" What would have happened if millions of American and British people, struggling with coupons and lines at the gas stations, had learned that in 1942 Standard Oil of New Jersey [part of the Rockefeller empire] managers shipped the enemy's fuel through neutral Switzerland and that the enemy was shipping Allied fuel? Suppose the public had discovered that the Chase Bank in Nazi-occupied Paris after Pearl Harbor was doing millions of dollars' worth of business with the enemy with the full knowledge of the head office in Manhattan [the Rockefeller family among others?] Or that Ford trucks were being built for the German occupation troops in France with authorization from Dearborn, Michigan? Or that Colonel Sosthenes Behn, the head of the international American telephone conglomerate ITT, flew from New York to Madrid to Berne during the war to help improve Hitler's communications systems and improve the robot bombs that devastated London? Or that ITT built the FockeWulfs that dropped bombs on British and American troops? Or that crucial balI bearings were shipped to Nazi-associated customers in Latin America with the collusion of the vice-chairman of the U.S. War Production Board in partnership with Goering's cousin in Philadelphia when American forces were desperately short of them? Or that such arrangements were known about in Washington and either sanctioned or deliberately ignored?"

Charles Higham, researcher, about U.S.-Nazi collaboration during WWII