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Dylan, the American Left, and What We Have Lost

I know the below is too on the nose, and you shouldn’t mess with a classic, but just hear me out and maybe weep a little for how far backward we went from Dylan’s youthful vision of a better future.

Juan Cole, Truthdig

http://evergreenedigest.org/sites/evergreenedigest.org/files/Bob%20Dylan%20Performs%20Blowing%20In%20the%20Wind%20on%20TV%20March%2C%20%2763.jpgOct 14, 2016 | Bob Dylan would no doubt be as distressed as the American corporate media to see an ideological interpretation of his 1960s anthems that helped win him the Nobel Prize in Literature. Especially after his 1966 motorcycle accident and retreat to Woodstock and domesticity, Dylan turned inward, exploring an internal life of ethical values and love and rejection of political cynicism (as with “All Along the Watchtower“). But the early ’60s were a different matter.

Since the mass media won’t tell you Dylan was in his youth a leftist or that some of his greatest work came out of a critique of our corporation-dominated, unequal, militaristic and racist society, it is important to underline it lest the celebration of his masterpieces become merely maudlin (and he would hate that outcome, too).

Juan Cole, Contributor,  is the Richard P. Mitchell Collegiate Professor of History at the University of Michigan. He has written extensively on modern Islamic movements in Egypt, the Persian Gulf and South Asia and has given numerous media interviews on the war on terrorism and the Iraq War.

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Related:

Are We Living in T.S. Eliot’s ‘Waste Land’? Joseph Pearce, Intellectual Takeout

The poem presents a panoply of characters, all as vain as they are vacuous. Empty heads and empty hearts leading empty lives.

Chris Hedges | Confronting the Signs of a Society in Decline

In contemporary society—especially modern society—we can see the signs of morbidity around us, in our boundless use of harmful fossil fuels, in much sought-after expansion beyond the capacity to sustain ourselves, and in the physical decay of the environment and in the places we inhabit.

Depth Psychology Alliance / Dandelion Salad with Chris Hedges

 

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Image by r2hox via Flickr

September 15, 2016 | In this depth psychology oriented discussion powered by Pacifica Graduate Institute, Pulitzer Prize Winning Journalist Chris Hedges speaks with Depth Psychologist, Bonnie Bright, Ph.D, about how, as both individuals and civilizations, we encounter cycles of growth, maturation, decadence, and decay, and death.

In contemporary society—especially modern society—we can see the signs of morbidity around us, in our boundless use of harmful fossil fuels, in much sought-after expansion beyond the capacity to sustain ourselves, and in the physical decay of the environment and in the places we inhabit.

Chris Hedges, a weekly columnist for Truthdig, is a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist who has reported from more than 50 countries, specializing in American politics and society. 

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Related: 

America, We Are Better Than This, David A. Miller, Huffington Post

This is not the time to give in, it is the time to find what has always called us to be just a little bit better, rise above what serves to drag us down and soar above our basest of instincts. We can do this America, please, don’t give up and don’t give in.

 

John Cena Just Schooled Every Conservative, Bigoted, Flag Waving ‘Patriot’ On Patriotism

  • Cena starts out by calling for an end to divisiveness. This post and its title are therefore contrary to his wishes. It cannot be ignored, however, that the things Cena talks about are all liberal ideologies and that it at least appears that he is addressing the Islamophobes, bigots and homophobes of the right. I watched it and there was an emotional response and a lot of head nodding in agreement. I have a neighbor who thinks the Muslim Obama is stockpiling ebola in the Lincoln bedroom who would see the same video with contempt and hatred.
  • Cena fans on the right should be turning in their “Hustle, Loyalty and Respect” shirts and hats any day now.

Busta Troll, Gopocalypse

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July 5, 2016 | John Cena’s wrestling career is more impressive than most not because of how well he reads a script or how many titles the writers of the show have awarded him, but for what he contributes to humanity in general. Cena, who is credited for fulfilling more Make-A-Wish Foundation wishes than anyone else on the planet, is a role model for children and adults alike.

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He volunteers his time to work with veterans groups, wrestles for free aboard aircraft carriers and donates more money to charitable organizations as a percentage of income than all of the owners of Walmart combined. That’s why when this video came across my newsfeed I couldn’t help but share it, because John Cena has once again lent his voice to a very good cause.

Busta Troll: After 2 years of trolling and goating I retired to become a professional clickbait whore. The time has come for Busta to return to what Busta does best: Making conservatives look stupid. Grab your goat memes and come along for the ride.

Full story (video) … 

How a Museum Reckons With Black Pain

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  • The Smithsonian’s new memorial of African American history and culture is at once triumphant and crushing.
  • Related: Black Lives Don’t Matter to Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton.

Vann R. Newkirk II, the Atlantic

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https://cdn.theatlantic.com/assets/media/img/mt/2016/09/RTSNR10/lead_960.jpg?1474640977A woman passes a display depicting the Mexico Olympic protest at the National Museum of African American History and Culture on the National Mall in Washington, D.C. Kevin Lamarque / Reuters

Sep 23, 2016 | I should not be here.

By the cold universal logic of statistics, none of us should; each of the near-7-billion lives on Earth is a mathematical fluke. But as an American black person, albeit as a free person with a fairly full complement of civil rights, I’ve always been aware of the especially immense unlikelihood of my own existence. For four centuries, most people who look like me and the vast majority of the people who gave rise to my own flesh and blood have been killed, crushed, or disenfranchised under the torture rack of white supremacy and racial injustice. As police violence, voting rights, and Donald Trump’s promises of Big Racism dominate our political conversations, and as protests and riots roil the streets of my birthplace of Charlotte, I’m reminded that I may be thanking my lucky stars a bit too soon.

Vann R. Newkirk II is a staff writer at the Atlantic, where he covers politics and policy.

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Related:

 

Black Lives Don’t Matter to Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton, Bill Blum, Truthdig

http://www.truthdig.com/images/reportuploads/Black_Lives_Matter_protest_590.jpgA Black Lives Matter protest in New York City. (The All-Nite Images / CC BY-SA 2.0)

  • One thing the (Black Lives Matter) BLM analyses don’t do, however, is endorse a presidential candidate. And that’s for an eminently good reason: The candidates of both major parties, in their quests for power, have chosen to snub and malign the movement and the cause it represents.
  • Related: The Normalization of Evil in American Politics

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