Block of Bleak

Posted in Bombing Paupers, Culture of Lickspittle, Shoeshine at 12:15 pm by George Smith

Chris Hedges, at TruthDig, a lede graf no one ele could write:

The idiots take over in the final days of crumbling civilizations. Idiot generals wage endless, unwinnable wars that bankrupt the nation. Idiot economists call for reducing taxes for the rich and cutting social service programs for the poor, and project economic growth on the basis of myth. Idiot industrialists poison the water, the soil and the air, slash jobs and depress wages. Idiot bankers gamble on self-created financial bubbles and impose crippling debt peonage on the citizens. Idiot journalists and public intellectuals pretend despotism is democracy. Idiot intelligence operatives orchestrate the overthrow of foreign governments to create lawless enclaves that give rise to enraged fanatics. Idiot professors, “experts” and “specialists” busy themselves with unintelligible jargon and arcane theory that buttresses the policies of the rulers. Idiot entertainers and producers create lurid spectacles of sex, gore and fantasy.

There is a familiar checklist for extinction. We are ticking off every item on it.

Hedges is truly old school. For the last couple of years his prognostications on the American empire have been unremittingly bleak. Unfortunately, they’ve also been accurate.

Not so accurate but unintentionally and bleakly humorous is one of Hedges old colleagues at the New York Times, Roger Cohen:

[Trump] prefers guns to diplomats. Militarism and mercantilism constitute a new policy, unconstrained by any consideration of what the United States stands for in the world or the values its alliances have defended since 1945.

This is a radical departure…

Militarism and mercantilism … a new policy. ORLY!? Surely you must be joking, Mr. Shoeshine.

Cohen is upset that Trump has ripped any pretense of a mask off global Amrican conduct. Truth has upset him.

Of course, we’ve supported “strong men” before. Stalin, for example, mentions Cohen. Which should have you falling out of your chair, going back as it does 60 years and neatly omitting the half dozen or so murderous assholes Barack Obama sold weapons to during his eight years in office in the much more current time frame.

What did Chris Hedges think of Roger Cohen?

It’s plain as can be in the historical record:

I was covering the war in Yugoslavia. Roger Cohen [another marquee-name, roving correspondent for the Times] dropped into Sarajevo as soon as the ceasefire started.

He was based in Paris at the time. He had been my predecessor in the Balkans. He asked me what stories I’m working on, and I say, “I’m doing this and this and this and so on.” So then I go off into Bosnia somewhere, and while I’m gone, he stole my stories. He was gunning for a Pulitzer for his Balkans reporting.

He took what you had written?

No, I hadn’t written them yet. He took my story ideas and did them. We later had a dinner in Paris with all the Times foreign correspondents. Roger—who’s a snake—says to me in front of all the other foreign correspondents and the foreign editor, in this kind of saccharine voice, “Chris, I heard you’ve been saying things about me behind my back?” And, I said, “No, Roger, there’s nothing I’ve ever said behind your back I wouldn’t say to your face. You’re a shit.”

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