Ever wake one morning and wonder…..

June 9, 2008 — 3 Comments

photo by Bob Parker ©2008
Quote by Harold Pinter from “The Art of Theater III” as quoted in The Paris Review Book of Heartbreak, Madness, Sex, Love, Betrayal, Outsiders, Intoxication, War, Whimsey, Horrors, God, Death, Dinner, Baseball, Travels, The Art of Writing, and Everything else in the World since 1953. New York: Picador, 2003 (page 364). Originally published in Paris Review, Issue 39, 1966.

History runs in cycles. Is our national collective memory rather brief? Seems the historical cycle we are in is pretty short to me. Weren’t we here just 40 years ago. True, I am a little closer to Medicare than Woodstock now. I remember the draft; war protests; LBJ stepping down; Nixon resigning in disgrace 5 years later, one step ahead of the impeachment train. Look one generation past and see our present. Gulf of Tonkin and false claims of Iraqi WMD’s. Nixon going after the establishment media NY Times and Washington Post over the Pentagon Papers. Now we have a different Pentagon media relationship: Military officers hired by major media outlets as “independent” analysts who in fact eagerly took their talking points from the Pentagon (not to mention lucrative business connections and contracts). All the while propaganda was propagated on an unknowing public via the national corporate media conglomerates who abdicated their role as government watchdogs. Lies that cost 58,000 US (over 300,000 wounded) and several million Vietnamese lives then, lies verified by a Senate panel that cost lives now. Thousands of US soldiers dead, many tens of thousands wounded and disabled by physical trauma, brain injury, and PTSD. Countless Iraqis dead and injured (because they never were officially counted. Johns Hopkins University estimated in the hundreds of thousands). Millions more Iraqi’s left displaced and homeless. You think Harold Pinter’s rage was misplaced?

A few months ago, I purchased several old issues Ramparts Magazine. While reading one particular section of the May 1970 issue’s editorial, I entered a time warp. Perhaps when you read it you’ll know what I mean.

photo by Bob Parker ©2008
Quote from Ramparts Magazine Editorial, May 1970

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3 responses to Ever wake one morning and wonder…..

  1. tony marsella June 10, 2008 at 4:47 am

    The thoughts are frightening in their timelessness. I remain bewildered by the probelms before us – yes, it is the system, but the system is so large and so complex that there seems to be no meaningful way to address the problem. How do you change a military-industrial-legislative complex that is so massive in its weath and power and self-serving interests? The M-I-L Complex has its tentacles in our economic, governmental, cultural, media, and educational systems. It can easily neutralize any complaints by pointing out its spurious virtues.

  2. Thanks Bob for the time warp to Vietnam. It is a deja vue definitely. Now that Obama is the Democratic candidate, I think that the country is in for some hot hot debate on the Iraq war (a) and its effect on our economy (b). It has going to have to happen because, this time, the candidates are polar opposites.

    The internet info explosion and blog like this one are having an effect on the country waking up. But no one is saying it will be easy.

  3. O yes. The Ramparts article is spot on!

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