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Thank you, Chris Hedges
by Tony Cochran ( ashramstudent [at] gmail.com )
Thursday Feb 9th, 2012 1:33 PM
"So, how are we two interpret this 'tale of two Hedges?' Perhaps Maxim Gorky, an intellectual in Russia who supported militant direct action against the state at a time when his fellow intellectuals did not. Against the Tsar, the people fought and toppled the regime, and Gorky wrote incisively, "Nobody in Europe bewailed life so loudly as the Russian intelligentsia. The whole of the intelligentsia was chained to the shackles of the capitalist state, this lifeless and corrupted state that which was poisoning the people. [Now that there is action] the intellectuals languish ... in melancholy and idleness, the remnants of their strength fast vanishing, and at heart regretting only one thing: sitting around a samovar, [as] they waxed eloquent on the subject of the tyranny of autocracy, of their love for the people, and of the inconvenient way in which the universe as a whole is organized." Gorky continues humorously concluding, "And it is likely that if Prometheus himself, having stolen some new fire to light of the secrets of life, appeared to them and interfered with their tea drinking, they would invoke their curses on Prometheus too."
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"Here’s to the Greeks. They know what to do when corporations pillage and loot their country. They know what to do when Goldman Sachs and international bankers collude with their power elite to falsify economic data and then make billions betting that the Greek economy will collapse. They know what to do when they are told their pensions, benefits and jobs have to be cut to pay corporate banks, which screwed them in the first place. Call a general strike. Riot. Shut down the city centers. Toss the bastards out. Do not be afraid of the language of class warfare—the rich versus the poor, the oligarchs versus the citizens, the capitalists versus the proletariat. The Greeks, unlike most of us, get it."
~ Chris Hedges

"The presence of Black Bloc anarchists—so named because they dress in black, obscure their faces, move as a unified mass, seek physical confrontations with police and destroy property—is a gift from heaven to the security and surveillance state. The Occupy encampments in various cities were shut down precisely because they were nonviolent. They were shut down because the state realized the potential of their broad appeal even to those within the systems of power.

They were shut down because they articulated a truth about our economic and political system that cut across political and cultural lines. And they were shut down because they were places mothers and fathers with strollers felt safe."
~ Chris Hedges

Swirling about contemporary “progressive politics” are ironic images, often in dizzying and terrifying ways. Politicians and world leaders fly into Europe in private jets and drive around in limousines on their way to climate change summits, scolding us to cut down on our consumption and ride a bike to work. President Obama, heralded by many as the beacon of change and hope, intensifies the war on Afghanistan, bombs Libya (and elsewhere) and institutes massive financial bailouts for the US elite. Meanwhile, the Occupy Wall Street activist celebrity Chris Hedges, former New York Times journalist, is pushing the hypocrisy of his own - the liberal intelligentsia - to even more 'equal' heights, perhaps this is what is meant by the fight for equality? Perhaps mainstream 'progressive' leaders want to be equally ironic, equally hypocritical and equally tragic (and equally oppressive) as the system they are ostensibly fighting? Perhaps working for the New York Times, the ultimate propaganda newspaper for the liberal elite does something to a person's ability to think critically? Or perhaps something more sinister is happening here?

As Noam Chomsky and Edward Herman note in "Manufacturing Consent" the narrowing of the spectrum of acceptable debate and actions is a defining feature of the corporate media establishment. Creating the parameters of theory and practice is essential to maintaining the oligarchy of the spectacle called 'representative democracy.' Hedges is therefore, playing his role well: Selling to the dissatisfaction with the liberal intelligentsia via his book "Death of the Liberal Class" and yet still haunting us as a ghost of that same 'dead liberal class,' of academics, union leaders and celebrity activists who prefer to talk more than do. Hedges is right to denounce the lazy, liberal intellectuals who have for far too long sat on the sidelines and refused to confront the increasingly fascist state directly. He lucidly states, “It is one of the great ironies of corporate control that the corporate state needs the abilities of intellectuals to maintain power, yet outside of this role it refuses to permit intellectuals to think or function independently.”

So, how are we two interpret this 'tale of two Hedges?' Perhaps Maxim Gorky, an intellectual in Russia who supported militant direct action against the state at a time when his fellow intellectuals did not. Against the Tsar, the people fought and toppled the regime, and Gorky wrote incisively, "Nobody in Europe bewailed life so loudly as the Russian intelligentsia. The whole of the intelligentsia was chained to the shackles of the capitalist state, this lifeless and corrupted state that which was poisoning the people. [Now that there is action] the intellectuals languish ... in melancholy and idleness, the remnants of their strength fast vanishing, and at heart regretting only one thing: sitting around a samovar, [as] they waxed eloquent on the subject of the tyranny of autocracy, of their love for the people, and of the inconvenient way in which the universe as a whole is organized." Gorky continues humorously concluding, "And it is likely that if Prometheus himself, having stolen some new fire to light of the secrets of life, appeared to them and interfered with their tea drinking, they would invoke their curses on Prometheus too."

Hedges is, at best, an intellectually dishonest celebrity activist with seriously unchallenged straight, white and wealth privilege. At worst, he is a paid agent of the 'poisonous' capitalist state that existed, albeit in different style but with similar material form, in Gorky's day as ours. Either way, Hedges represents the worst type of scoundrel, the liberal intellectual who benefits from the class divide and demonizes those who fight directly against its tyranny - for this Chris will be tossed into the dustbin of history, and so much rubbish has been piled into this dustbin from the echelons of the liberal intelligentsia, that I am confident he will be at home amongst all the trash. Thank you for helping us 'sort' you out!

Articles To Read

"The Folly of Christopher Hedges" by Nihilo Zero, Here: http://anarchistnews.org/node/21630

"A Post-Colonial Reading of Chris Hedges" by Unsettling America, Here: https://unsettlingamerica.wordpress.com/2012/02/07/a-postcolonial-r...

"Chris Hedges is a De facto Government Agent Here" by Lloyd Hart, Here: http://www.indybay.org/newsitems/2012/02/09/18706973.php

"Black Bloc: A Cancer in Occupy" by Chris Hedges, Here: http://www.truth-out.org/black-bloc-cancer-occupy/1328541484

Comments  (Hide Comments)

by Bronwen Rowlands
Friday Feb 10th, 2012 10:43 PM
Nonsense; sloppy thinking. Your assignment: read Hedges's book "War Is a Force That Gives Us Meaning." Read more Hedges, period.
by -A-
Saturday Feb 11th, 2012 3:34 AM
This guy supports the Black Bloc in Greece until it lands on his front door step. Typical hypocrite and traitor to the Greeks and every resistance fighter who uses the tactic in the U.S. and abroad. Better put a stop to this before it gains too much appeal and popularity. Don't do anymore direct action. Here. read a book instead. Americans might try to rise up and I might not be able to sell off anymore of my books. Anything to maintain business as usual so I can sell my books. The last thing we want American sheep to do is read less and riot more before taking matters into their own hands and living out their own lives the way they want to in total freedom of the police state and the capitalist oppressor. That ought to help slow down the materialization of true self-determination. These sheep. They think they can get away from the farm. NEVER!

Chris Hedges is a profiteer.