hiding in plain sight
(2020) by sarah kendzior
unless we were part of the opportunity hoarding elite.. my gen did not get to have choices.. instead we had reactions.. the opp hoarding elite told us we were imagining the permanence of our plight and sold us survival as an aspiration.. this book tells the story of how they cornered the market
i used to think the worst feeling would be to tell a terrible truth and have no one believe it. i have learned it is worse when that truth falls not on deaf ears but on receptive ones. it is one thing to listen, it is another to care – and yet another to act in time
(on her predicting trump winning – seeing so many kleptocratic/autocratic comparisons to her home uzbekistan)
why i didn’t read book when it first came out.. seemed so focused on trump et al
trump won and being right felt terrible.. once an autocrat gets into office it is very hard to get them out.. they will rewrite the law so that they are no longer breaking it
now the state has become a proxy for the mafia.. an arrangement overt in russia but present to various degrees in countries worldwide.. trump is a node in a sadistic network whose ambitions extend beyond borders and whose ties go back decades..
(from letter she wrote in 2016) authoritarianism is not merely a matter of state control, ti is something that eats away at who you are. it makes you afraid, and fear can make you cruel.. it compels you to conform/comply and accept things you would never accept, do things you never thought you would do..
you do it because everyone else is doing it, because the institutions you trust are doing it and telling you to do it.. you are afraid of what will happen if you don’t do it and the voice in your head crying out that something is wrong grows fainter and fainter until it dies..
that voice is your conscience, morals, individuality. no one can take that from you unless you let them.. they can’t take away who you truly are.. they can never truly know you, and that is our power.
but to protect and wield this power you need to know yourself.. right now, before their methods permeate, before you accept the obscene and unthinkable as normal
if you are brave, stand up for others.. if you cannot be brave – and it is often hard to be brave – be kind.. but most of all. never lose sight of who you are what what you value..
(end of letter)
i don’t have a longing for the past.. i have nostalgia for the future, because i am a mother, and whatever system wins will be the one my children inherit..
i remind myself that the future is not set in stone, that i still have some ability to shape it. i cling to what cannot be predicted or controlled: love, imagination, originality. i try to live in a way that would break an algorithm.. i pray to the unexpected
this book is an attempt to tell the truth about the time before, the story most people missed the first time around, and how the refusal to tell it led us into our current plight.. it is a history of crime/corruption that ran underground for decades only to emerge in ways that are stark/unavoidable, ..
trumps path to power parallels a decades long erosion of american stability, integrity, and democracy.. i don’t remember a time i felt safe in america, but i remember when i though ti was possible.. familiar feeling for those born in the opening salvo in the symphony of american decline
yeah.. may be a parallel there.. but i think we’re missing something much deeper.. i think we haven’t had an american stability/integrity.. and am not sure we want a democracy..
i don’t believe in hope. i believe in facts and history.. in my own eyes/ears.. i believe the american people deserve the truth about what happened to their country.. to understand the truth you need to understand the history of america
1 – the bellwether of american decline
missouri as bellwether state – because from 1904 to 2008 voted for winning president every yr except 1956.. for over a century was where you looked to discover direction america would go.. it’s not where to look if you want to know how the country went to hell
prior to trump taking office, midwest (missouri) tended to be ignored.. a media makeover is a peculiar wound.. it is a terrible feeling ot be in pain and to be ignored – as a place, as a person. it is worse to be given a mask and told it’s your face
masks and measures et al
missouri is a national litmus test for corruption and injustice.. we show how low america can go and while some of our wounds may be self inflicted, they are also contagious.. we live under the tyranny of the minority on a state level.. which is subject to tyranny of the minority on a national level, which is subject to the tyranny of the elite on an international level..
after 2016 – called ‘cassandra in trumpland’.. cassandra was a greek goddess cursed to see the future but never believed.. via my book – view from flyover country.. i wrote about america, but i saw america thru missouri’s eyes.. which means i saw hell and i saw it in advance..
missouri – cave state.. have to learn to see in the dark.. i like that their twisted beauty exists in the dark, indifferent to whether it is appreciated.. homecourt advantage in knockout fallout shelters..
missouris was born in sin.. 1821.. on agreement to keep black missourians enslaved so that maine could call itself free.. black americans in slave holding states were labeled 3/5 of a person
missouri lives the legacy of that compromise.. held together by the recognition that we are being torn apart.. surrounded by the sense that everything can come undone at any time and no one will fix it.. baked into geology, history, culture
we are the state with the loosest restriction on both money/guns.. those w fantasies of a lawless world need look no further than mirror to have a sudden longing for regulation missouri is not a state of free spirits reveling in anarchist dissolution of the power structure.. we are citizens held captive by politicians beholden to corrupt donors whose names we do not know.w.
missouri has become a petri dish for the end of the american experiment..
2 – the 1980s: roy cohn’s orewllian america
when i was 5 my mother decided to tell me about fascism.. via orwell’s 1984: ‘a society where everyone lied.. and no one had freedom except for people in charge.. and big brother was always spying on you to make sure you didn’t think for yourself.’.. she said ‘a made up story about what he imagined in future because he lived during a terrible time and he wanted to make sure we didn’t live in a terrible time’
i was intrigued that someone had worried enough about the future to invent his own fictional version.. i wondered what had happened in the past that was so horrific that it compelled him to imagine a world of lies/control. i remember writing 2+2=5 on my kindergarten homework, below where i had written 1984.. to see if anything would happen..
(on trump quote in 84 – wanting nuclear weapons and deals w russia.. and his relationship w roy cohn) why trump, who inherited fortune opened the door to an array of social possibilities, chose arguably the worse person in america to be his best friend remains unknown… donald’s mentor and constant sidekick, who represented all five of the organized crime families in the city of ny
(then on an on about the laundering ness)
this is not ‘the sopranos’ w six guys sitting in a diner, shaking down a local business.. these criminal enterprises are making billions of dollars from human trafficking, to health care, fraud, computer intrusion, copyright infringe. et al
foreigners ask me why american citizens are not out in the streets..protesting around the clock.. the answer is that protest is more of a financial risk than a political one.. and financial risks from the backbone of modern american terror..
we cannot afford to overcome. w ea re too busy doing gofundme’s for the funerals of our friends whose pervious gofundme failed to cover their health care..
we live in the era of the masses vs the mob: but people do not recognize the mob as the mob.. in the 21st cent , the mob both wears suits and files them. the mob is tasteful and presidential, and -worst of all – legal.. we are living in roy cohn’s america.. directed by his apt pupil, w the aid of a crime syndicate that does not recognize law, freedom or the sanctity of human life.. trump arrive on national scene right as nation began to crumble
began to crumble?
much like the american dream.. i do not remember a time before trump
the domination of nepotistic elites in national media over past 2 decades has warped public perception of what ‘ordinary people’ thought of trump, and of what info about his corruption is thought fit to print. the transformation of the media into an industry for *elites who may not recognize white collar corruption as abnormal – or who may be reluctant to upset their family or social circles by revealing a crime – is described in depth over the next few chapters
on stories of marriage to ivana.. and michael cohen as trump’s aspiring roy cohn replacement.. in his 2019 fed testimony.. cohen admitted to making at least 500 threats under trump’s orders for over a decade.. describing him as akin to a mafia boss
trump covers up crime w scandal..
the horror of the present is realizing that many adults had no sense of what was really going on during my 1980s childhood either .. and those that did.. and lived to tell the tale are the ones who stole the future
3 – the 1990s: elite exploits of the new world order
the biggest worry for my gen, i was told, would be how to cope w the dazzlilng array of options the forthcoming utopia would present.. sv and limitless ness..
pete leyden – watching global econ boom
this was fantasy that became accepted as conventional wisdom.. first by elites, and then by masses, who mortgaged their futures on the assurances of those who had already won.. 40 yrs 80 to 2020 were remarkable transformation.. just not in way wired predicted.. bunch of ie’s .. most time spent of jeff epstein and sex crime ring to service most rich/powerful men in world..
took over 2 decades to lock up epstein and he died in prison before accusers could confront him in court.. like harvey weinstein and many other hollywood abusers living large and walking free..
it took #metoo to get epstein back into headlines..
4 – the early 2000s: reality tv terror
towers fall.. it meant new heroes/villains
i told my son how osm eo fmy friend enlisted afer 9 11 out of a sense o obligation ot country, bu ttha tthey kept havin to fight the same wars over and over and hat this left them hurting inside. my son asked if the govt could give them a special reward.. lik enot havin to work ever again because they had already tried so hart to protect people, and i held his face to my chest to he wouldn’t see my cry
the rise of the apprentice is possibly the most underappreciated aspect of trump’s presidential rise.. for pretty much anyone born after 1984.. ordinary contestant who battle for a celebrity’s approval.. this was the format of american idol..et al.. i first heard bout it from my mother.. who nearly 2 decades .. was coming around to the guy..
for americans like my mom who had spent 80s and early 90s gleefully loathing trump.. the apprentice as hate-watch nostalgia trip.. everything amusing .. w none of the danger..
by mid 90s influence of italian mafia in nyc had waned.. via giuliani’s prosecutions but furthered by influx of criminals form former ussr..russian mafia.. in filtered into wall street, corps.. one of greatest beneficiaries of 9 11 and war on terror .. was russian mafia
while collar crime is violent crime: it’s called blood money for a reason.. the mafia manages the military, the crooks control the courts.. in other countries this would be called an authoritarian coup.. in america.. mealy mouthed officials call our transition into a mafia state ‘deeply troubling’ and do little to curb the damage..
cohen and sater getting putin’s support in bringing trump to power
sater had worked as an fbi informant during crucial yrs of 1998 to 2001.. disconcerting that fbi didn’t raise any concerns when trump ran/won
trump marketed trump soho as an apprentice prize, covering up a crime scene w the glitz that flourished during the bush years.. apprentice allowed trumps to combine glamour and crime into a new family narrative.. knowing they could always claim ‘it’s not real.. just reality tv’ if anything fell apart.. the apprentice conditioned americans to accept fraud as entertainment.. to expect the reputational rehab of ruined celebrities and to not consider that behind the fakeness of the show lay something very dark/real..
a false meritocracy breeds mediocrity.. i wrote that in 2013 bemoaning the loss of econ opp.. i did not realize i was writing about national security as well
5 – the late 2000s: heirs to the crash
i figured i would become a stay at home scholar of post soviet authoritarianism mom.. structuring my work schedule around my children and avoiding day car, which cost more than my stipend paid.. the biggest obstacle had always been money, and i had finally figured out a work around..
he did not know that what i valued most in a city was cheapness and that i feared debt far more than crime..
when you have children you start to see your city thru their eyes.. in st louis.. i saw parks and free museum and a free zoo and free family events every weekend.. if there’s a unifying positive trait to st louisans, it’s a blunt pragmatism, a radar for bs that doesn’t quite cross over into cynicism.. in st loius the brink is a permanent condition.. the 2008 recession brought the world of everyone i knew crashing down.. w whatever fragile sense of stability they had never to return.. for over a year i would wake up shaking..
none of this was reflected in the portrait of the american econ we saw on the news.. in obama’s 2nd term, unemploy rater was around 5%.. people complain of being treated like a stat, but i longed to be treated like a stat.. to force people in power to acknowledge my family’s grim reality instead of counting us as technically employed workers in a false recovery..
in the end.. it didn’t seem to matter.. it made no diff what any of us did or how well we did it.. made not diff what we could off the world. we only knew what the world could take away..
it takes a long time to go broke in st louis; that’s part of its charm..
there is a vast body of knowledge that has been lost from young people priced out of their professions.. specialists whose skills were sharpened but never fully shared
way deeper than that.. we’re missing all of us..
in the post employment economy, a generation learned to manage its expectations.. the rage, though – that stays with you
way deeper.. ie: graeber job\less law et al
as opp for ordinary people fell, opportunism for rich/unqualified flourished
yeah.. not so much.. both have been sunk for e v e r
the trump admin often described as a ‘kakistocracy’ .. rule by least competent.. i have never used this word and prefer the term ‘kleptocracy’ rulers steal nation’s resources to enhance their personal wealth
(ie’s of nepotism – giving relatives jobs – and inner circle ness.. et al – to show all the workings of the kleptocracy – spent lots of time on kushner fam – i skimmed)
they don’t like it when we talk back.. ironically, it’s my distance from their insular ny world, my rejection of coastal careerism in favor of an independent life in st louis, that has give me the ability to criticize the admin that many journalists w full time national media jobs lack.. can’t take away my press credentials because i never asked for their permission to speak.. can’t get me fired i hold multiple jobs so no one entity can screw me over.. i’m not interesting enough to blackmail.. there’s nothing in their rarefied world i want; not prestige/wealth/reward.. i don’t have faith to covet anything but freedom..
6 – 2010-2016: revolution shakedown
protests break out over unemployment.. but now.. smartphones and sm.. methods of mobilization/visibility changed.. as did state surveillance and retaliation..
i got banned from uzbekistan (for paper).. but i didn’t care .. in 2006 i had to choose between my career and telling the truth. i chose the truth and never regretted it
former ussr in 2000s – uprisings – were known as ‘the color revolution’ a reference to he colors of flowers often used as symbols of nonviolent disobedience.. putin saw them as threat
citizens of authoritarian states know all too well.. that protest carries great risk and govts kill w impunity.. flaunting power is the point.. but state power depends on the dehumanization (disappearedness) of the victims to succeed.. a notable lesson about documentation in our current dictator-ridden digital era, when it is easier to be disappeared than ever before
(on academia behind curve when it came to tech) despite its pervasiveness, i did not see the internet as an inherently democratizing force.. instead, i worried it exacerbated the worst tendencies of its users, even while giving them new avenues for self expression.. for citizens of authoritarian states dominated by conspiracy theories and lies, the internet proved a terrible tool fro building trust.. the same features of online discourse that people in free states found liberating – the ability to join/leave a community at will.. to write under multiple id’s.. to preserve and resurrect old arguments – made the internet perilous for participants whose default mode was distrust due to the long standing oppression they had experienced.. you could reinvent yourself on the internet, but you could not start over
reinvent but not start over?
we could do both if we used it as a means for non hierarchical listening
ie’s: 2009 iran’s ‘twitter revolution’ and arab spring as ‘fb revolution’
twitter & tear gas et al
sm corps that would grow into powerful surveillance monopolies present selves in early 2010s as fellow underdogs in the broader struggle against teh system. vulnerable activist gave them their info
i was invited to a number of lavish events held by what digital media scholar evgeny morozov derisively called ‘cyber utopian’..
2012 – google event – was well intentioned .. and seems remarkable in retrospect that any sv co even sought to cultivate democracy in the former ussr – but it misunderstood how authoritarian states most effectively use the internet.. which is thru a process called networked authoritarianism.. coined by rebecca mackinnon as an internet open enough so that it can be exploited by bad actors, who use it to bombard users w propaganda, conspiracy theories, and personal attacks.. it is the loudest way of silencing the public voice, and is more effective than tradition state censorship.. in azerbaijan.. dissidents were allowed just enough room to speak their mind online, and then were punished by state for doing so and held up as ie’s in order to intimidate the public.. (ie’s of her friends getting jailed)
need means to undo our hierarchical listening
the rationale for the open internet became clear when russian officials used it to publicize the arrest of popular dissidents like blogger alexey navalny and punk band pussy riot.. instead of fearing the open internet, kremlin officials embraced it.. using sm to smear the opposition and to release a firehose of propaganda intended to overwhelm citizens’ faculty for critical thinking.. the emergence of ie: fb, twitter and russia’s vkontakte in 2000s and 2010s made disinformation easier to spread.. the arrival of memes allowed eye catching lies to be delivered via mobile phone.. meaning users who lacked home computers could circumvent the internet entirely..
before i left academia for good.. networked authoritarianism was my focus.. not only because of its danger to citizens of authoritarian states, but because i could see the utility of the model in western states that were experiencing a similar erosion of institutional trust
i wrote in 2911 article: ‘the result of ubiquitous paranoia is not disbelief. it is credulity’. i did not know (then) that 8 yrs later i could sub ‘america’ for ‘uzbekistan’
among the few who saw the threat early was jaron lanier.. warned public in 2010 of new danger: wikileaks.. at the time.. speech advocates were hailing wikileaks and its founder, julian assange as defender of govt transparency.. .. in 2010 chelsea manning exposed war crimes by sending docs to wikileaks.. which wikileaks then published online.. (gen public optimistic) but lanier predicted that wikileaks would ultimately ally w dictators and sm networks would abet them ‘wikileaks method punishes a nation – or any human undertaking – that falls short of absolute, total transparency, which is all human undertakings, but perversely rewards and absolute lack of transparency.. ie: iron shut govt doesn’t have leaks to site, but a mostly open govt does.. only way out is to change architecture’
sm sites didn’t change architecture.. instead over course of 2010s architecture changed us
matters little.. we were already whales
need a diff focus.. otherwise spinning wheels.. wasted energy..
there was a sense in early 2010s that awareness in and of itself mattered.. that the new mediums making people more aware of citizens’ suffering would make them more empathetic and more likely to stand up for the afflicted.. (but) protesters were screaming into a moral void
the complicity and greed of the global elite seemed the biggest barrier to change. what it both masked/enabled was worse: the rebirth of global fascism.. weaponization of sm by authoritarian states and corp intelligence agencies like cambridge analytica had begun.. (but we were oblivious).. a nightmarish act of violence was still viewed by most as a nightmarish act of violence; not a meme/joke.. like now.. when mass shooters livestream their massacres.. while online forums cheer the body count.. like it’s a video game.. this is the architecture of the internet that lanier warned about.. an algorithmic facilitation of cruelty and pain
by end of 2014 – i was exhausted from a year of documenting nonstop and often inexplicable atrocities..
however few in power paid attention – in part because sm co’s almost never took seriously the most common targets, women of color..
it took congress years to id an intelligence operation that black women pointed out in real time.. put democracy in jeopardy.. 2016 election et al
the ferguson uprising (summer 2014) marked the divide between the tentative hope of the early 2010s demonstrations and the chaotic brutality of the rest
i live in st louis.. ferguson is not a hashtag for me, it is a town 5 miles from my house..it’s where i sent my kids to camp and shopped..
in ferguson, the world saw st louis’s heartache laid bare.. and decided it was something to devour and then dismiss.. a flash point glimmers, burns.. and then it is gone and you are left alone w that pain.. amplified by the apathy w which it was so abruptly received..
if ferguson taught me anything.. it was that noticing and caring are two very diff things..
there is not real beginning.. because brown’s death is part of a continuum of criminal impunity by the police toward st louis’s black residents.. there is not real end, because there are always new victims to mourn.. in st louis, there is no justice, only sequels..
outside of st louis, ferguson is shorthand for violence and dysfunction.. what they missed is that ferguson was the longest sustained civil rights protest since the 60s..
the criminal impunity many americans are only discovering now – thru the trump admin – had always structure the system for black residents of st louis county..
in the beginning.. there was hope that police would restrain themselves because of he volume of witnesses.. but there was no incentive for them to do so: no punishment locally, and no repercussions nationally.. the documentation did not stop the brutality.. instead.. clips were used by opponents of protesters to try to create an impression of constant ‘riots’.. that in reality did not occur.. the vandalism and arson shown on cable news in an endless loop were limited to a few nights and took place only on a few streets.. and on all the celebrities/activists showing up just to be on tv – never seeing them again
on declaring no charges for wilson.. that night erupted w predictable fury.. the feeling of being watched but not seen
in 2016 a locally well known ferguson protester, darren seals wrote in a fb post ‘black death is a business. millions and millions flowing thru the hands of these orgs in the name of mike brown yet we don’t see any of it coming into our community.. ‘ .. seal complained about how out of town ngos and online celebrities associated w black lives matter had gained attention off the ferguson brand.. used that attention to raise money, and then left w the resources meant to help st louis.. devastating their community even further.. soon after post.. seals was shot to death in his car.. which was then set on fir.e.. his murderer was never found..
at times the voracious consumption reminded me of postcards from a century ago showing white crowds cheerfully watching lynchings..
ferguson protests turned some local activist into online stars – the worst kind of celebrity.. the kind that gives you notoriety but no protection.. one of my friends.. bassem masri.. in nov 2018 died of heart attack at age 31.. when one of my friends from ferguson movement dies.. i am forced to process their death in two ways: thru my own grief, and thru the media coverage of distant reporters seeking to again capitalize off the ferguson brand.. pretending to care aobu the local activists they disregarded in daily life.. there are not words for the double conscious agony of his experience..
all i have asked since 2014 is to top; treating people like prey.. michael brown lost his life because darren wilson denied him his basic humanity.. the casualties that followed included activist who refused to accept that dehumanization as the final say.. to protest dehumanization, in the digital media era, is to risk your own life.. it’s to make yourself a target in a medium that distorts and devours you until you are no longer recognized as real..
the most reliable export of st louis is pain.. its most reliable import is predators
trump had spent his life spreading dangerous racist myths and his comments on ferguson (gangs were all illegal immigrants et al) only continued this lifelong libel streak.. in 1989 he took out a newspaper ad in multiple newspaper.. calling for execution of the central park five..
trump understood this system and capitalized on it.. spreading the birther myth (obama) et al.. reminiscent of theory control employed by the third reich.. adolf hitler – whose speeches trump long kept by his bedside.. praised the strength of this mech (the big lie) and used it to turn a country against itself..
ie’s/listing many officials working with/for russia.. from both parties.. why did so many official who had sworn to protect the us, including two fbi heads, go on to work w the russian mafia? why would this be an attractive prospect after they themselves had alerted the world to the mafia’s danger? there are many routes to personal profit.. why choose the one that is in direct ethical conflict w current us policy and may endanger your country?
the trump admin is a transnational crime syndicate masquerading as a govt.. formed decades before thru prolonged engagement w criminal or criminal adjacent actors linked to hostile regimes.. in particiular, the kremlin and tis oligarch network
it all has been..
hostile regimes: any form of people telling other people what to do
you know what’s coming but you don’t know how tot stop it. there’s no logic to this orchestration.. and you.. seem to have the exact wrong amount: enough tot make the wrong people angry, not enough to make the right people act..
you wonder if your children will see it and if hey will be able to tell truth from fantasy when you are not around to teach them anymore.. you wish you lived in a time when people were more haunted by the past than by the future..
seemingly everyone on earth now has a side hustle w the kremlin.. calming down and obeying the leader are the orders of the day.. the orders, repeated like the drumbeat of a racing heart.. and you’re locked alone again in realization.. staring into the tunnel at the end of the light
7 – 2016-2019: ‘a threat more extensive than is widely known’
on trump ties to kremlin made public.. his relationship is only further exacerbated by the many trump campaign staffers w ties to the kremlin or subsidiaries like wikileaks..
wikileaks? subsidiary of kremlin?
on meeting andrea chalupa.. and doing gaslit nation.. and being death targets for ie: exposing trumps connection to kremlin
one of the most horrific realization when your govt is hijacked from the inside is that there is no official to whom you can turn – because it is rare to find an official who cannot be turned ya corrupt operator. living for legacy/security/money – it makes no diff, they are not living for you.. there had been a coup, and we were on our own
(which counters her earlier comment on hillary being innocent)
nov 2016 fbi tweeting negs about clintons
the trump admin whistle blowers have all been women whose finding are marginalized by officials and the press.. trump has spent his life silencing inconvenient women ..
(says nov 9 .. she and chalupa figured out what had happened.. how trump ended up president).. this turned out to be what happened, but at the time our serious concerns were dismissed as hysteria
my book, the view from flyover country.. suddenly became a bestseller.. people asked me if i was happy about that and i told them if they thought i could possibly be happy right now then they had missed the point of the book..
from election day onward, i took every public speaking invitation i was offered, most unpaid, in order to ry to reach people more powerful than me and convince them our country was in grave danger..
one speech ‘what matters is who gets hurt. and the obligation of a journalist is to serve the public.. the obligation of a politician is to serve the public. and the public is not getting served.. i don’t think journalists are doing a good job standing up for the most vulnerable citizens which is absolutely what their priority should be’
what would become a mantra so frequent people have joked it will be emblazoned on my tombstone ‘it’s i the public domain, ti’s been there the whole time’.. ie: chronicles of trump’s criminality .. this time from wayne barrett
us and uk (brexit) citizens who protested this criminal impunity read each other’s works from across the pond while watching the development in our respective govt.. each side hope the other would enforce accountability and thru prompt out own side to do s o as well.. but no officials did – not w the courage/speed required.. not on behalf of the people they were supposed to serve
same answer i give everywhere i go – yes.. it (trump phenom) ca happen anywhere.. because surest route to a klepto takeover is to deny it’s happening, and the surest way to solve it is to sever it before it blooms
when people ask me if they should leave the us, my answer is always ‘and where, exactly, is it safe to go?’
on the mueller report being enough to impeach.. (but) the report was never necessary.. because trump had committed impeachable offenses outside the purview of the probe – .. every week for over 2 yrs
(on traveling w kids so they can see country thru own eyes.. pointing out all leaders w slaves et al).. you’re supposed to say ‘lots of good people owned slaves’ or ‘it was legal then’ you’re supposed to pretend that historic injustices have either been resolved or that they were never that bad, and that they didn’t linger and structure the politics of the present.. you’re supposed to normalize cruelty and in doing so exonerate those who practiced it
maté parenting law et al
structural violence et al
there is no ‘that’s just the way things were’ to answer the question of what happened to the us.. it’s ‘that’s the way things became’.. as a transnational crime syndicate took the place of govt.. diff between weakening.. thru wars/recessions and being hijacked/butted by hostile anti american actors
yeah.. much deeper than that – and longer ago .. ie: black science of people/whales law
i’m trying to teach them so they will know diff between a deeply flawed democracy and a country that ceases ot be a democracy at all
yeah.. democracy ness.. part of the gutting ness.. ie: f & b & dm same law
i told them to never consider cruel policies as normal, no matter what politicians and pundits tell them
polices themselves are cruel.. de humanizing.. we need to let go of any form of people telling other people what to do
i am trying to show them our country was always vulnerable/flawed.. but that people fought back.. in the past we survived because good americans answered the question ‘why does nobody stop people from doing bad things?’ w laws and actions that prevented people from doing them
yeah.. that’s not ever going to happen.. we need a legit alt.. rather than trying to call out ‘bad actors’.. ie: gershenfeld something else law et al
if we survive the current era, it will not be due to a savior form above, but to the refusal of ordinary people to accept elite criminal impunity as normal
that is such an energy suck.. we need to let go of always responding.. and offer a means where 8b people can live ‘as if they’re already free’
(on how her kids have seen all the landmarks et al).. my kids don’t find any person out of the ordinary.. my kids have been *dragged to more presidential museums and libraries than they wanted to see.. and poor gerald ford, who was so boring i had to tell the kids he was an undercover wizard .. they roll their eyes but absorbed the info.. as well as the **disparity between then and now.. i don’t need to spell out the rupture between every past us president and trump.. it is evident in every museum and national monument we visit.. even though so many of the problems we face today – systemic racism, econ decline, foreign aggression – are the same as before
wow.. ugh to the epilogue
1 – *why drag them.. w their eyes rolling? (we have to let go of any form of people telling people what to do ness)
2 – **no disparity..? all part of us not being us.. president ness and monument ness being huge perpetrators
i don’t get sentimental about presidents.. as a rule i oppose making heroes out of public servants.. but the vast gulf between the present and the era of eisenhower’s speech hurts..
so ironic.. when your book title is ‘hiding in plain sight’.. ugh
there is a fragility to life now that nearly breaks me, on i could handle as a child and as an adult but not as a mother .. children force you to envision the future, and doing that today is an act of mental violence.. but children also force you to fight for the future
i have tried to *prep my children for the future by showing them america firsthand, the horrors and the resilience, the diversity fo regions and people.. but another part of me is inoculating my children against **future propaganda: fake memories/archives/assurances
*beginning of the cancer.. let go.. prep et al a huge red flag we’re doing it/life wrong
(so wish we could talk)
we’re already **there.. have been for e v e r ie: black science of people/whales law
but i don’t want them to parrot my views or anyone else’s.. i want them to learn and think for themselves.. i want them to see their homeland firsthand and draw their own conclusions..
that’s all too responsive/passive/dead.. i want everyone to be free – esp from all the energy sucking of supposed to ness..
i want my childre to see the american past before it is gone
history ness is killing us.. let go
i don’t expect to see peace in my time.. i expect a continued erosion of freedom coupled w horrific shifts in our environmental climate and our national law.. *i expect surveillance culture will exacerbate fear to the point that submission is no longer recognizable as such.. it will just be called life
wow..*it already is.. has been fore v e r
but there is a diff between expecting an america autocracy and accepting it, and i refuse to accept it.. every loss we endure is a reminder of the gifts we still hold, and of our obligation to fight for a better future for the next gen.. i will never settle.. i want to settle the score
dang woman.. you just dispelled this whole deep experience/book you’ve lived.. dang.. you’re perpetuating all the horrors you wrote about.. with ‘i want to settle the score’..
let go.. the score can’t be settled.. (ie: moten abolition law et al) .. and even if it could.. that’s a waste of energy/life..
imagine instead.. if we just focused on listening to the itch-in-8b-souls.. first thing.. everyday.. and used that data to augment our interconnectedness.. we might just get to a more antifragile, healthy, thriving world.. the ecosystem we keep longing for..
ie: cure ios city
let’s do that