Home Main Forums General Discussion "We are an empire now…we create our own reality"

  • madfloridian (1994 posts)
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    "We are an empire now…we create our own reality"

    That was said by a senior Bush advisor, but I am thinking that both parties now follow that policy of creating their own reality.  Neither party now seems very concerned about the “reality” as seen by others.  In fact the media lately doesn’t seem to have their own reality at all….they wait to be told what is truth according to the hawkish in both parties.

    Turning on the TV is an experience in figuring out whose reality is being touted at a given moment…the Reality of the Establishment Democrats or the Reality of Trump.

    Oddly enough those realities seemed to blend into one this week when Trump attacked Syria.   The media proclaimed him the President now, and the Democrats tripped over their own feet with praise.

    What we as the People of either party think doesn’t really matter that much.  Our realities are our own,  unrecognized by either Party.

     

    Those words about empire and reality were said to Ron Suskind in 2002 during a visit to the White House.  They were said by a senior advisor to George Bush.   That senior advisor was later said to be Karl Rove.

    Karl Rove’s Prophecy: “We’re an Empire Now, and When We Act, We Create our Own Reality”

    In a famous exchange between a high official at the court of George W. Bush and journalist Ron Susskind, the official – later acknowledged to have been Karl Rove – takes the journalist to task for working in “the reality-based community.” He defined that as believing “that solutions emerge from your judicious study of discernible reality.” Rove then asserted that this was no longer the way in which the world worked.

    “We’re an empire now, and when we act, we create our own reality. And while you’re studying that reality – judiciously, as you will – we’ll act again, creating other new realities, which you can study too, and that’s how things will sort out. We’re history’s actors . . . and you, all of you, will be left to just study what we do.” (Ron Suskind, NYTimes Magazine, Oct. 17, 2004).

    Here is the original article by Suskind and the paragraphs that refer to this comment.

    Faith, Certainty and the Presidency of George W. Bush.

    In the summer of 2002, after I had written an article in Esquire that the White House didn’t like about Bush’s former communications director, Karen Hughes, I had a meeting with a senior adviser to Bush. He expressed the White House’s displeasure, and then he told me something that at the time I didn’t fully comprehend — but which I now believe gets to the very heart of the Bush presidency.

    The aide said that guys like me were “in what we call the reality-based community,” which he defined as people who “believe that solutions emerge from your judicious study of discernible reality.” I nodded and murmured something about enlightenment principles and empiricism. He cut me off. “That’s not the way the world really works anymore,” he continued. “We’re an empire now, and when we act, we create our own reality. And while you’re studying that reality — judiciously, as you will — we’ll act again, creating other new realities, which you can study too, and that’s how things will sort out. We’re history’s actors . . . and you, all of you, will be left to just study what we do.”

    There were some more words from the first link that really stuck with me.   It’s why we are not hearing underlying truth about the world’s “real” reality, why our politicians keep silent when they should be speaking out with rage.

    …..the details of the official reality are filled in and smoothed out all the time by crafty campaigns produced in the PR world, with assistance from think tanks and academia. But the question does reappear in one’s thoughts: do the politically prominent and the well-positioned editors, especially those known for having once possessed skeptical minds, actually believe it all? Do those members of the cabinet or parliament, who can get hot under their collar as they decry the latest revelation about one or other outrage committed by Putin, take seriously what they’re saying?

    Not all of them are believers.  I know this from off the record conversations. But there appears to be a marked difference between the elite in government, in the media, in prominent social positions, and ordinary people who in these recent times of anguish about populism are sometimes  referred to as uneducated. Quite a few among the latter appear to think that something fishy is going on. This could be because in my experience the alert ones have educated themselves, something that is not generally understood by commentators who have made their way through the bureaucracy of standard higher education. A disadvantage of being part of the elite is that you must stick to the accepted story. If you deviate from it, and have your thoughts run rather far away from it, which is quite inevitable once you begin with your deviation, you can no longer be trusted by those around you.

    If you are a journalist and depend for your income on a mainstream newspaper or are hired by a TV company, you run the risk of losing your job if you do not engage in self-censorship. Consequently, publications that used to be rightly known as quality newspapers have turned into unreadable rags. The newspaper that was my employer for a couple of decades used to be edited on the premise that its correspondents rather than authorities were always correct in what they were saying. Today greater loyalty to the reality created in Washington and Langley cannot be imagined. For much of northern Europe the official story that originates in the United States is amplified by the BBC and other once reliable purveyors of news and opinion like the Guardian, the Financial Times and the (always less reliable) Economist.

    …….The triumph of political untruth has brought into being a vast system of political intimidation. Remember then that the intimidator does not really care what you believe or not, but impresses you with the fact that you have no choice. That is the essence of the exercise of brute power.

    I think both parties and the complicit media create the reality they want, and amazingly they seem more and more to be forming an empire that will continue to spread democracy at gunpoint.

     

     

     

    BuySellTrade, bobthedrummer, 20score and 32 othersMajor Hogwash, OzoneTom, Segami, 99thMonkey, Baba OhReally, nenagh, winter is coming, Tuesday, KauaiK, snot, mother earth, shanti, Ohio Barbarian, Hydra, jwirr, ctsnowman, MrMickeysMom, Octafish, iggy, canoeist52, Paper Roses, FloriTexan, Art from Ark, Enthusiast, Ichingcarpenter, DesertRat2015, Haikugal, Silver Witch, bbgrunt, zeemike, Marym625, FanBoy like this
    If a person is required to be loyal to a political party and not question their stands on issues, then any semblance of real truth is lost. https://twitter.com/madfloridian

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    • FanBoy (7985 posts)
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      1. I was trying to think of the same quote just today

      • madfloridian (1994 posts)
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        2. It's a quote that just about describes America today.

        Unfortunately.

        If a person is required to be loyal to a political party and not question their stands on issues, then any semblance of real truth is lost. https://twitter.com/madfloridian
    • Marym625 (25848 posts)
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      3. And being an empire, we will crash and burn.

      It’s based on the wealth of the few. The top is too heavy to hold up any longer.

      When the “mighty” fall, we’ll be left in the ashes.

      It’s how we build from those ashes that will matter.

      Great post Madflo! On The Daily Radical

      "Once the decision was made to go into Iraq as an invader and occupier,  it’s like our nation lost its conscience. And it has not yet gotten that conscience back." Madfloridian  
      • madfloridian (1994 posts)
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        4. As will all empires, esp those who think they are infallible.

        :hi:

        I’ve been so sickened this week by the obvious fawning of the Democrats and the media to Trump’s attack on Syria.

        If a person is required to be loyal to a political party and not question their stands on issues, then any semblance of real truth is lost. https://twitter.com/madfloridian
        • Marym625 (25848 posts)
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          5. I as well

          Tulsi Gabbard is the only one speaking truth.

          It’s disgusting and despicable what the dems and repugs are doing. No excuse.

          :hi:

          "Once the decision was made to go into Iraq as an invader and occupier,  it’s like our nation lost its conscience. And it has not yet gotten that conscience back." Madfloridian  
        • zeemike (1239 posts)
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          6. Or they just don't care.

          Because they are self interested and as long as they get what they want in their lifetime they could care less what happens after they are gone.

          I knew this man who had a friend that died and he asked that his ashes be spread on a lake he loved in his life. And after the funeral this guy was given the ashes and when it was over he walked outside and threw the ashes in the dumpster…and commented he’s dead and will never know the difference. I think that typifies the attitude of these people who run things in this country.

          You see things; and you say “Why?” But I dream things that never were; and I say “Why not?”
          • Silver Witch (5272 posts)
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            7. Probably the answer Zeemike

            Sadly probably the answer.

            #Let'sTalkRevolution
          • ThouArtThat (5056 posts)
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            8. Such A Sad Story – Yet Representative Of The 1% So Well – Callous And Cruel

            eom

            "In America Today, Power Corrupts and Money Corrupts Absolutely" - Anonymous  
          • madfloridian (1994 posts)
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            9. "typifies the attitude of these people who run things in this country"

            That is just about the truth.

            If a person is required to be loyal to a political party and not question their stands on issues, then any semblance of real truth is lost. https://twitter.com/madfloridian
          • HIP56948 (2824 posts)
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            20. Whoa, I may have said: "you never were much of a friend, were you?"

    • madfloridian (1994 posts)
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      10. "They got away with momentous lies at an early stage."

      That’s how the writer explained how Rove’s realities came to be.

      http://www.globalresearch.ca/karl-roves-prophecy-were-an-empire-now-and-when-we-act-we-create-our-own-reality/5572533

      The realities Rove predicted have infantilized parliamentary debates, current affairs discussion and lecture events, and anything of a supposedly serious nature on TV. These now conform to comic book simplicities of evil, heroes and baddies. They have produced a multitude of editorials with facts upside-down. They force even those who advise against provoking Moscow to include a remark or two about Putin being a murderer or tyrant, lest they could be mistaken for traitors to Enlightenment values or even as Russian puppets, as I have been. Layers of unreality have incapacitated learned and serious people to think clearly about the world and how it came to be that way.

      Yes, almost all of the stuff on the TV is now almost childlike in nature.

      How could Rove’s predictions so totally materialize? There’s a simple answer: ‘they’ got away with momentous lies at an early stage. The more authorities lie successfully the more they are likely to lie again in a big way to serve the purposes of earlier lies. The ‘they’ stands for those individuals and groups in the power system who operate beyond legal limits as a hydra-headed entity, whose coordination depends on the project, campaign, mission, or operation at hand. Those with much power got away with excessive extralegal use of it since the beginning of this century because systems of holding the powerful to account have crumbled on both sides of the Atlantic. Hence, potential opposition to what the reality architects were doing dwindled to almost nothing. At the same time, people whose job or personal inclination leads them to ferret out truth were made to feel guilty for pursuing it.

      If a person is required to be loyal to a political party and not question their stands on issues, then any semblance of real truth is lost. https://twitter.com/madfloridian
    • Enthusiast (9827 posts)
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      11. A corrupt media reinforces the alternate reality.

      It’s an amazing phenomenon.

      "The NSA’s capability at any time could be turned around on the American people, and no American would have any privacy left, such is the capability to monitor everything. There would be no place to hide."  Frank Church "When plunder becomes a way of life for a group of men in society, over the course of time they create for themselves a legal system that authorizes it and a moral code that glorifies it." - Frederic Bastiat, 1848
      • Art from Ark (2806 posts)
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        12. Corrupt to the rotten core

        The last time America was run like a business, we ended up with a Great Depression.
    • Fasttense (1550 posts)
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      13. Are they really spreading democracy at gunpoint

      Or are they spreading their version of an oligarchy?

      It comes down to our very broken economic system. Marx predicted this outcome. He saw this continued deterioration and corruption of government into nothing more than tools for the control of the mass of citizenry.

      You can NOT have a democratic form of government while promoting a dictatorial, feudal style, form of economics. You allow those born with capital to take more and more, until they take it ALL. That does NOT allow for freedom or democracy.

      Those people born to wealth, born with inherited capital, amass even more wealth so that they are like little countries inside our country. And as countries are want to do, they try to take over everything. These heirs who accumulate excess wealth, more wealth than small countries, are a danger to a peaceful society.

      Now they are even creating their own reality.

      • jwirr (3722 posts)
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        15. Every empire (oligarchy) that has ever existed moved not to free others but to

        steal any wealth they could extract from them. Nothing has changed. Naomi was absolutely correct.

        But they will fall and it will be because they are following that quote. They deny fact and create their own reality. However, there is one kind of fact that does not play along with their games: scientific facts regarding things like climate change, depletion of resources such as fuels, and other things that they truly have no control over. That will bring them down if they continue on the same path. A nice safe building in the middle of Kansas is just part of their made up reality and has nothing to save them.

        Edited to ask a question: What does the total destruction of the ME have to do with their created reality? Or is it just to keep us all focused away from them and their actions?

    • MrMickeysMom (1673 posts)
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      14. And, I suppose that's part of the shock doctrine's intent…

      I never read it, but somehow think this was Naomi Cline’s explanation of what was going on. Rove just knew what his role had to be…

      Once the round heeled Democrats fell over, it was clear that this path would be continued until we have become SO insignificant outside the 1%, we are being thrown into the dumpster.

      Then, it’s up to us, as it’s always been. Grow our own food, limit our consumer spending, get rid of debt, network and bird dog the 1%, having no choice than what MLK said 49 years ago…

      Notice how few even recognized MLK?

      Hell no...I'm not giving up...     cat-gif-238.gif giphy.gif
    • Ohio Barbarian (4807 posts)
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      16. And the realities they create are increasingly hypocritical and unbelievable.

      Some 200 civilians are killed by an American air strike in Mosul and it isn’t even mentioned in the M$M for a week. Some 80 civilians are killed in an incident involving nerve gas in a terrorist-held town in Syria and the missiles are flying in 72 hours without even an investigation into who or what done it. Over a dozen people are killed in a terrorist attack on a St. Petersburg subway train and there are no headlines of “We are all Russians now” or Russian flags posted in Facebook sympathy.

      Instead, there are dark hints that Russia’s security services did it so they can crack down on dissenters more.

      Whatever fits the current narrative. It’s really an insult to our collective intelligence, and that really pisses me off.

      Great post, Madfloridian.

      Ignorance is the foundation of tyranny.   
      • madfloridian (1994 posts)
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        17. "It’s really an insult to our collective intelligence"

        Yes.

        If a person is required to be loyal to a political party and not question their stands on issues, then any semblance of real truth is lost. https://twitter.com/madfloridian
    • Fire with Fire (797 posts)
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      18. This is the smoking gun of fake news

      https://jackpineradicals.com/boards/topic/a-fake-news-moment/

       

      This of course was not the first bit of fake news in history.  That distinction goes back at least as far as Cain in the Book of Genesis.  But this was a milestone, and the fact that this little snippet did not destroy Bush, Rove and the entire War Machine explains the last 15 years of American history perfectly.

      History’s actors create their own reality, and then while us foolish members of the reality based community try to study it judiciously, those same liars move on to dream up new lies to tell.  We as a society went about our business as though nothing was out of whack when the guys who lied us into a war (that is still going on today) just owned up to making it up as they go along.

      How can anybody be surprised by the Tower of Babel that is our political discourse today made up of dueling shouts of Fake News?

      From there we degenerated into the current crisis of legitimacy as competing cabals of “history’s actors” are now clashing, just like those Ignorant Armies in Matthew Arnold’s “Dover Beach”:

       

      Ah, love, let us be true
      To one another! for the world, which seems
      To lie before us like a land of dreams,
      So various, so beautiful, so new,
      Hath really neither joy, nor love, nor light,
      Nor certitude, nor peace, nor help for pain;
      And we are here as on a darkling plain
      Swept with confused alarms of struggle and flight,
      Where ignorant armies clash by night.

       

      The confused alarm of Russia Russia Russia is just another exercise in the long con — and our only hope is to be true to one another.

      • madfloridian (1994 posts)
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        19. Thx for that link. I missed that post.

        And that quote from Dover Beach is just so devastatingly sad.

        If a person is required to be loyal to a political party and not question their stands on issues, then any semblance of real truth is lost. https://twitter.com/madfloridian
    • tonyl (913 posts)
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      21. and the reality is ..

      As the US political elite and the people who pull their strings continue to live in there own bubble ‘creating their own reality’; inevitably; their reality will conflict with the other realities of the real world.

      I may be wrong but I see the recent decision to bomb Syria as being nothing more than Trump caving in to what must have been an incessant drum-beat generated by those who surround him; it had the look of inevitability about it. If things continue along this trajectory I think, in about 2 years we will see these outcomes:

      1. The establishment of a new state of Kurdistan made up of portions of northern Syria; northern Iraq and Southern Turkey.
      2. Civil war in Turkey.
      3. Turkey’s exit from Nato (and maybe a stronger rapprochement with Russia – possibly through SCO).
      4. A re-drawing of the national boundaries of Iraq; Turkey; Libya and Syria
      5. Continued decline in any possible US hegemony (and in it’s economic and political influence).

      None of the above; are likely to be the realities envisaged by the people in the above mentioned bubble.

      Yes, for sure, I could be wrong .. but ..

      I think that, for the general population of the US; their realities will only change when they become sufficiently united to force change; and that; my friends; is what a lot of people are starting to refer to as revolution.

      Because you cant have integrity occasionally
    • Rhett Cohen (276 posts)
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      22. The Simulacrum

      Postmodernist French social theorist Jean Baudrillard argues that a simulacrum is not a copy of the real, but becomes truth in its own right: the hyperreal. Where Plato saw two types of representation—faithful and intentionally distorted (simulacrum)—Baudrillard sees four: (1) basic reflection of reality; (2) perversion of reality; (3) pretence of reality (where there is no model); and (4) simulacrum, which “bears no relation to any reality whatsoever”. In Baudrillard’s concept, like Nietzsche’s, simulacra are perceived as negative, but another modern philosopher who addressed the topic, Gilles Deleuze, takes a different view, seeing simulacra as the avenue by which an accepted ideal or “privileged position” could be “challenged and overturned”. Deleuze defines simulacra as “those systems in which different relates to different by means of difference itself. What is essential is that we find in these systems no prior identity, no internal resemblance”.

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Simulacrum

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Simulacra_and_Simulation

      I already am eating from the trash can all the time. The name of this trash can is ideology. The material force of ideology makes me not see what I am effectively eating. -  Slavoj Žižek
    • dlegendary1 (1006 posts)
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      23. No wonder Congress has an 8% approval rating

      We have a poverty problem that’s leading to an unprecedented meth overdose epidemic and they’re worried about opioid abuse. We’re not spreading Democracy at the point of a gun: we’re overthrowing legitimate governments and are essentially invaders. No one likes to say it but we’re the assholes in this story. And our asshole leaders keep reciting the narrative of “good guys vs. bad guys”; not realizing that we are too hungry, too sick, and too cold to root for them.

      Keep it up guys! Eventually reality will come down hard on those who pretend to deny it.

    • 99thMonkey (3675 posts)
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      24. You mean spreading oppression, death & misery in the name of "democracy"

      Surely that’s what you meant to say. :shrug:

    • bjo59 (3609 posts)
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      25. Weirdly, I stood right next to that bastard Rove in the Southwest line-up

      at the Austin airport last month.  It was surreal.    He looked me right in the eye and smiled.  A chill went up my spine.

      • 2bAnon (4160 posts)
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        33. Like he knew you would tear him a new one, if only you expected to see him

        but you weren’t expecting to see him, and he knows what we think of him, what we always have thought of him, and how much we wanted to see him strung and quartered back in the day, but not really all that long ago.  amirite?

        that must have been an extremely weird situation.  Similar it seems to a friend of mine several years ago ended up on the MUNI with George Schultz on board of all people (in SF) .

        Schultz was so out of place, so that it didn’t seem real, stunned into silence for a minute, but he did manage to voice his disgust to him.  I don’t recall Schultz’s response, per se but I remember it was totally typical of his arrogance.

        Creepy, ain’t it?

         

        http://jackpineradicals.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/sergiolara2-1.mp3

         
         
        • bjo59 (3609 posts)
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          34. Very creepy!

          And very similar situation.  A person like that so completely where you would never expect to see him.  I inspected Rove very carefully because it didn’t seem possible that it was really him, standing there by himself in the Southwest “A” group (his open carry on had a book about Washington D.C. lying on top).  A couple did finally start chatting him up – kind of treating him like he was a movie star.  It was creepy as hell.  I kept thinking about how I was standing next to such a horrific person and yet he looked like an ineffectual, dusty, weak little fellow.  I bet that’s what CIA assassins look like too.

          p.s.:  good for your friend!  Real presence of mind to fire off a comment under those bizarre circumstances.

    • RealityCheck (910 posts)
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      26. "We are an empire now"

      After a few in the US began calling for a NWO that grew since the 1950s and 1960s, a sizeable small group of hardened NeoCons started PNAC around 1997 that focused on creating such a global empire of military force to be reckoned with. During 2000, the plan was drawn up as Global Pax of Americana. BushCo acted on and empowered those plans to a point of no return. TrumpCo looks to lay claim to a better and greater version of this with his top prize being IRAN. It would not surprise me if he ran in 2020 for re-election on that platform ….. vote for me again and I’ll take down IRAN post Syria and N Korea (in which he’d claim success regardless of the outcomes).

       

       

      http://historycommons.org/context.jsp?item=a060397pnacprinciples

        Context of ‘June 3, 1997: PNAC Think Tank Issues Statement of Principles’

      September 2000: Neoconservative Think Tank Writes ‘Blueprint’ for ‘Global Pax Americana’
        
      The neoconservative think tank Project for the New American Century writes a “blueprint” for the “creation of a ‘global Pax Americana’” (see June 3, 1997). The document, titled Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategies, Forces and Resources for a New Century, was written for the George W. Bush team even before the 2000 presidential election. It was written for future Vice President Cheney, future Defense Secretary Rumsfeld, future Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz, Florida Governor and Bush’s brother Jeb Bush, and Cheney’s future chief of staff Lewis Libby. [Project for the New American Century, 9/2000, pp. iv and 51 ]
      Plans to Overthrow Iraqi Government – The report calls itself a “blueprint for maintaining global US preeminence, precluding the rise of a great power rival, and shaping the international security order in line with American principles and interests.” The plan shows that the Bush team intends to take military control of Persian Gulf oil whether or not Saddam Hussein was in power and should retain control of the region even if there is no threat. It says: “The United States has for decades sought to play a more permanent role in Gulf regional security. While the unresolved conflict with Iraq provides the immediate justification, the need for a substantial American force presence in the Gulf transcends the issue of the regime of Saddam Hussein.” The report calls for the control of space through a new “US Space Forces,” the political control of the internet, the subversion of any growth in political power of even close allies, and advocates “regime change” in China, North Korea, Libya, Syria, Iran and other countries. It also mentions that “advanced forms of biological warfare that can ‘target’ specific genotypes may transform biological warfare from the realm of terror to a politically useful tool” (see February 7, 2003).

       

       

       

       

      • madfloridian (1994 posts)
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        28. Here's the complete text of PNAC's Rebuilding America's Defenses.

        Great link, thanks.   I’m thankful info clearing house saved so much of it from the archives.

        http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/pdf/RebuildingAmericasDefenses.pdf

        It lays out their plans for taking control, so I am always surprised when there is doubt about the reasons for our constant attacks in those regions.

        And their letter to Bill Clinton in 1998.

        http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article5527.htm

        The media can’t break away from their talking points long enough to discuss this.

        So we should not even be surprised at the bombings.  They still sicken me though.

         

        If a person is required to be loyal to a political party and not question their stands on issues, then any semblance of real truth is lost. https://twitter.com/madfloridian
      • Major Hogwash (2777 posts)
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        31. I think you're right. Trump wants to fulfill the PNAC plan by being re-elected.

        There won’t be many more social promises that he can make to his base by then to get re-elected. Promises like overturning Obamacare got Trump in to the White House for his first term. But, to get re-elected he is going to have to promise them “something bigger, something better.” I think you’re right saying that Trump will campaign on a promise to totally destroy Iran, which is the only country that is left from the original list of those included in the PNAC plan that we haven’t invaded yet.

        It’s obvious that the Democrats are not going to stop him from continuing on the path that we are on now because they are all getting rich doing nothing while Trump does all the damage.

         

        Trump moya marionetka ~ Putin  
    • broiles (869 posts)
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      27. Creating your own reality is a sign of psychosis.

      • madfloridian (1994 posts)
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        29. Except when your country's leaders to it. Then it's heroic.

        :banghead:

        If a person is required to be loyal to a political party and not question their stands on issues, then any semblance of real truth is lost. https://twitter.com/madfloridian
        • broiles (869 posts)
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          30. Yeah right.

    • 2bAnon (4160 posts)
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      32. Excellent Post Madfloridian! Thank you for the work and the thoughtful analysis

      :bravo:

       

      http://jackpineradicals.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/sergiolara2-1.mp3

       
       
    • bobthedrummer (2896 posts)
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      35. "…an empire that will continue to spread democracy at gunpoint." There it is!

      All power to the People.