We’ve lived so long under the spell of hierarchy—from god-kings to feudal lords to party bosses—that only recently have we awakened to see not only that “regular” citizens have the capacity for self-governance, but that without their engagement our huge global crises cannot be addressed. The changes needed for human society simply to survive, let alone thrive, are so profound that the only way we will move toward them is if we ourselves, regular citizens, feel meaningful ownership of solutions through direct engagement. Our problems are too big, interrelated, and pervasive to yield to directives from on high.
—Frances Moore Lappé, excerpt from Time for Progressives to Grow Up

Thursday, August 4, 2011

War, Hollywood, and the Saviors and Slaughterers of Freedom [post of the month]

Click here to access article by Keith Harmon Snow from Dissident voice.
On July 22, 2011, thirty-two year-old Norwegian Anders Behring Breivik massacred 77 people in Norway. Hollywood released the new Captain America film the same week. Some people see Captain America as ugly Americana at its worst; others think anyone who criticizes it should be killed. The savior story Captain America follows the earlier 2011 premier of Marvel Comic’s Nordic superhero THOR. Meanwhile, ordinary people of both developed and underdeveloped countries suffer more and more as the captains of industry profit from massive global high-tech warfare and the manufacture of misery. How do such seemingly benign Hollywood films affect mass psychology? How do they influence individuals? Is there any relationship between martyr-massacres and mass entertainment media? Some call the Nordic Aryan a psychopath. Others are calling him a savior. Is he a self-styled Norwegian version of Captain America?
I regard this author as of one of the best independent journalists that the US has. They are a rare breed, and because of this they can only be accessed through alternative sources on the Web.

In this piece he provides an in-depth--and I mean in-depth--analysis of this phenomenon of right wing assassins and wannabe heroes such as Breivik and Jared Lee Loughner. He clearly explains the cultural context that produces such people: a cultural context created by the close cooperation between Hollywood and the Pentagon to insert ruling class values and war propaganda into the minds of ordinary people, especially young people. 

There is so much material here that I have some questions about its length for the internet. I think he has content for several separate articles. Most internet surfers are unable to stay with an article of this length. But, on other hand, it contains so much excellent material.  I particularly recommend  RT's 4:15m video critique of the movie, "Captain America" which he links to in the article.