The current world crisis is fundamentally a spiritual crisis. Our default mode is that we are human beings who sometimes have spiritual experiences when the reality is that we are spiritual beings who sometimes have human experiences. OK, your understanding of reality is 180 degrees upside down and backwards, now go out there and have a nice life. We shape our lives by the stories we tell each other about the way the world is. These stories go by such names as history, religion/theology, economics,etc., but they are all just made up stories. The map is not the territory. We confuse our story about how things are with reality, and they are often very different. Even science is a story, but a much more reliable one because there is a real committment to verification and consensus. Even there, however, there are fads and fallacies that are accepted as fact, honest mistakes, political manipulation, and a great deal more fraud than many scientists would like to admit. We need better stories, stories that more closely match reality, whatever that may be. We have tools and strategies for determining the truth, or at least a more likely, more useful story, but our old stories and our fear gets in the way. We do have some new stories, and a few very old stories that just need to be dusted off and rehabbed a little. However, tinkering with tax policy or messing with an already messed up money supply will not work. We mostly don't even know what money is--Jacob Needleman has addressed this topic on your excellent broadcast. No punk-ass terrorist can bring this mighty nation to its knees, but the unholy alliance known as the military industrial complex surely will. And just may blow the rest of the world to hell in the process. Not some radical crackpot, none other than Five Star General and Supreme Allied Commander in World War II, later President Dwight David Eisenhower warned us. In his farewell address to the nation in 1961(!) Ike said that "the military industrial complex represented a threat to democracy that exists and will persist." We couldn't believe that the same people who had, at that time in living memory of many, saved the world from the Nazi scourge and the same people who were producing a flood of glittering consumer goods could possibly be any kind of threat at all. We the People did not act at that time and today Ike's "iron triangle" of top military leaders, so-called defense contractors, and Washington politicians have morphed into an "iron rectangle" that has boxed us in with a sophisticated apparatus of a mass media controlled by major corporations, populated by talking heads who drift from academia to the corporate world and back, foundations and well funded think tanks that produce a steady stream of white papers and policy and strategy, and a stealth PR industry that has ballooned into a multibillion dollar monster to sell the lies and fake news that keep the People distracted and deluded. Weapons of Mass Distraction, as it were. Add in the Christian Right and we are in real trouble. Those poor, misguided souls believe that the essential precondition for the Second Coming of Jesus is nuclear war with the Arabs and the Russians. It's equally to know that many fundamentalist muslims believe something similaronly they are pulling for the return of the Caliphate, the religiously rulers of Mohammed's time. Things are actually much worse than they appear, bad as that may be. The United States of America has abandonned its foundations in the rule of law and has gone the way of empire, where power and the status quo are all that counts. George W. Bush, Dick Chaney, and a host of flunkies inside and outside the government should be prosecuted for crimes against the People (Rep. Elizabeth Holzman of Watergate "fame" drew up a legal brief detailing at least five Articles of Impeachment, now languishing in the dustbin of history.) We must not forget that the obscenity of our war against the people of Iraq to secure the oil has been distorted into a noble cause, the search for democracy and helping the Iraqi people achieve peace. Can't happen, not as long as we pursue the primarily military strategy based on a corrupt vision of the once noble idea of America as a nation defined by the Constitution and the rule of law. When the Massachusetts Supreme Court, with the stroke of a pen, abolished slavery so long ago, they did not bow down before the vast wealth and entrenched political power of the slave trade. They said that slavery was an abomination and must not be allowed to exist, and it was gone, just like that. Today we are well on the way to a corporate faschist nightmare enforced by ways and means unknown to past despots. Our peril is real and immediate, but we are not in danger from the terrorists or the Liberals or the Conservatives or the homosexuals or the bogeyman. Our greatest threat lies in the Hall of Congress and the corporate boardrooms, and even these, culpable though they may be, are not at the root of our difficulties. It is the False Evidence Appearng Real, the fear that guides our civic order. From the bogus war on drugs to the idea that we can put a fence around our country, guards, gun, and gates will not work for the sustainafuture we need. Never have and never will. The dialog you good people are engaged in is much more effective for addressing our economic disorder than the criminal, futile, puerile floundering that the moguls of finance and the princes of power in Washington are currently about. God(dess) bless you. I'll write again when I can. As you might imagine, I have looked into these questions a lot for a long time. I think I may at least have a few possible directions to go in the inquiry, if no final answers. That's my story and I'm sticking to it.
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