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Mon Jun 23, 2014, 08:16 AM

Chris Hedges: The Ghoulish Face of Empire


from truthdig:


The Ghoulish Face of Empire

Posted on Jun 22, 2014
By Chris Hedges


The black-clad fighters of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, sweeping a collapsing army and terrified Iraqis before them as they advance toward Baghdad, reflect back to us the ghoulish face of American empire. They are the specters of the hundreds of thousands of people we murdered in our deluded quest to remake the Middle East. They are ghosts from the innumerable roadsides and villages where U.S. soldiers and Marines, jolted by explosions of improvised explosive devices, responded with indiscriminate fire. They are the risen remains of the dismembered Iraqis left behind by blasts of Hellfire and cruise missiles, howitzers, grenade launchers and drone strikes. They are the avengers of the gruesome torture and the sexual debasement that often came with being detained by American troops. They are the final answer to the collective humiliation of an occupied country, the logical outcome of Shock and Awe, the Frankenstein monster stitched together from the body parts we left scattered on the ground. They are what we get for the $4 trillion we wasted on the Iraq War.

The language of violence engenders violence. The language of hate engenders hate. “I and the public know what all schoolchildren learn,” W.H. Auden wrote. “Those to whom evil is done do evil in return.” It is as old as the Bible.

There is no fight left in us. The war is over. We destroyed Iraq as a unified country. It will never be put back together. We are reduced—in what must be an act of divine justice decreed by the gods, whom we have discovered to our dismay are Islamic—to pleading with Iran for military assistance to shield the corrupt and despised U.S. protectorate led by Nouri al-Maliki. We are not, as we thought when we entered Iraq, the omnipotent superpower able in a swift and brutal stroke to bend a people to our will. We are something else. Fools and murderers. Blinded by hubris. Faded relics of the Cold War. And now, in the final act of the play, we are crawling away. Our empire is dying.

We should have heeded, while we had a chance, the wails of mothers and fathers. We should have listened to the cries of the wounded. We should have wept over the bodies of Iraqi children lined up in neat rows in the morgues. We should have honored grief so we could honor life. But the dance of death is intoxicating. Once it begins you whirl in an ecstatic frenzy. Death’s embrace, which feels at first like sexual lust, tightens and tightens until you suffocate. Now the music has stopped. All we have left are loss and pain. ....................(more)

The complete piece is at: http://www.truthdig.com/report/item/the_ghoulish_face_of_empire_20140623



93 replies, 16481 views

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Reply Chris Hedges: The Ghoulish Face of Empire (Original post)
marmar Jun 2014 OP
xchrom Jun 2014 #1
cantbeserious Jun 2014 #2
Demeter Jun 2014 #3
cantbeserious Jun 2014 #5
Plucketeer Jun 2014 #24
L0oniX Jun 2014 #19
ljm2002 Jun 2014 #78
Skeeter Barnes Jun 2014 #85
democrank Jun 2014 #4
malaise Jun 2014 #6
dixiegrrrrl Jun 2014 #61
malaise Jun 2014 #66
gratuitous Jun 2014 #7
yellowwoodII Jun 2014 #8
merrily Jun 2014 #9
stevenleser Jun 2014 #15
Fred Sanders Jun 2014 #20
stevenleser Jun 2014 #22
starroute Jun 2014 #27
stevenleser Jun 2014 #28
starroute Jun 2014 #35
stevenleser Jun 2014 #36
starroute Jun 2014 #43
stevenleser Jun 2014 #44
merrily Jun 2014 #67
merrily Jun 2014 #45
Jack Rabbit Jun 2014 #80
valerief Jun 2014 #18
merrily Jun 2014 #46
valerief Jun 2014 #60
merrily Jun 2014 #62
raouldukelives Jun 2014 #25
bbgrunt Jun 2014 #70
merrily Jun 2014 #73
randome Jun 2014 #10
yellowwoodII Jun 2014 #21
randome Jun 2014 #23
yellowwoodII Jun 2014 #26
merrily Jun 2014 #47
grahamhgreen Jun 2014 #11
truebrit71 Jun 2014 #12
LineLineReply .
randome Jun 2014 #16
NuclearDem Jun 2014 #34
Hissyspit Jun 2014 #91
NuclearDem Jun 2014 #93
merrily Jun 2014 #48
truebrit71 Jun 2014 #54
merrily Jun 2014 #58
L0oniX Jun 2014 #13
Fred Sanders Jun 2014 #14
stevenleser Jun 2014 #17
merrily Jun 2014 #49
factsarenotfair Jun 2014 #29
merrily Jun 2014 #75
factsarenotfair Jun 2014 #79
frazzled Jun 2014 #30
merrily Jun 2014 #50
truebrit71 Jun 2014 #53
merrily Jun 2014 #64
truebrit71 Jun 2014 #65
merrily Jun 2014 #69
marmar Jun 2014 #31
yellowwoodII Jun 2014 #32
merrily Jun 2014 #76
name not needed Jun 2014 #33
merrily Jun 2014 #51
grasswire Jun 2014 #81
truebrit71 Jun 2014 #37
yellowwoodII Jun 2014 #38
truebrit71 Jun 2014 #40
stevenleser Jun 2014 #39
truebrit71 Jun 2014 #41
stevenleser Jun 2014 #42
truebrit71 Jun 2014 #52
merrily Jun 2014 #77
merrily Jun 2014 #56
truebrit71 Jun 2014 #57
merrily Jun 2014 #59
merrily Jun 2014 #63
NuclearDem Jun 2014 #68
merrily Jun 2014 #71
merrily Jun 2014 #72
grasswire Jun 2014 #82
merrily Jun 2014 #84
grasswire Jun 2014 #86
merrily Jun 2014 #87
merrily Jun 2014 #88
grasswire Jun 2014 #89
merrily Jun 2014 #74
Doctor_J Jun 2014 #83
Oilwellian Jun 2014 #55
WillyT Jun 2014 #90
PowerToThePeople Jun 2014 #92

Response to marmar (Original post)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 08:21 AM

1. du rec.

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Response to marmar (Original post)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 08:24 AM

2. Those That Need To Hear This Message Never Will

eom

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Response to cantbeserious (Reply #2)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 08:39 AM

3. And we who have no pwer will pay for their war crimes.

 

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Response to Demeter (Reply #3)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 08:41 AM

5. + 1

eom

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Response to Demeter (Reply #3)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 10:20 AM

24. And pay,

 

and pay, and pay.

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Response to cantbeserious (Reply #2)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 10:06 AM

19. I'd like to review what DU members were saying in the run up to the war.

 

I wonder how many were pushing for the war. I wonder ...do they get the message now?

It's not hard to imagine what would have happened to Chris if he had said this just before the Iraq war. It would be a brave person to stick ones head up out of the crowd of angry idiots and speak truth.

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Response to L0oniX (Reply #19)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 04:05 PM

78. No need to imagine...

...what might have happened to Chris Hedges. He was booed off stage while giving a commencement address at Rockford College in May 2003 and had to be escorted off campus for his own safety.

Part 1:



Part 2:

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Response to L0oniX (Reply #19)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 05:40 PM

85. The NYT ran him off over his objections to the war. He was very vocal in opposition before and after

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Response to marmar (Original post)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 08:40 AM

4. K & R

~PEACE~

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Response to marmar (Original post)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 08:44 AM

6. K & R for truth

and way too many folks don't get this truth.

We are not, as we thought when we entered Iraq, the omnipotent superpower able in a swift and brutal stroke to bend a people to our will. We are something else. Fools and murderers. Blinded by hubris. Faded relics of the Cold War. And now, in the final act of the play, we are crawling away. Our empire is dying.

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Response to malaise (Reply #6)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 02:11 PM

61. "the Frankenstein monster stitched together from the body parts we left scattered on the ground"

such perfect phrasing.

A man for our time.

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Response to dixiegrrrrl (Reply #61)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 02:30 PM

66. Really perfect phrasing although I might have said

Iraq is now like Cheney's decrepit body

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Response to marmar (Original post)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 08:54 AM

7. Coulda, woulda, shoulda

But the money was just too good for the ghouls whose blood-soaked hands were on the levers of power. And now, 10 years later when it's all turned into the shit sandwich, who is holding forth once again on the teevee machine? The exact same people. It's not that we don't seem to learn from our mistakes, it's that we actively resist learning. Except for one thing: The money. As Sinclair Lewis observed, when a person's paycheck depends on his not understanding something, he will surely not understand it.

Are you ready to hold these war criminals accountable yet, America?

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Response to marmar (Original post)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 09:07 AM

8. It Behooves Us

It behooves us to remember Chris's speech at Rockford College in Illinois in 2003.
Please listen.


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Response to marmar (Original post)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 09:11 AM

9. "Blinded by hubris?"

I love Chris Hedges. He can preach to me all day, any day.

That said.....

Who was blinded by hubris? The Pentagon? Blackwater? Halliburton? Bechtel? Manufacturers of fighter planes, construction materials, uniforms, tanks, weapons, etc.?

Dick Halliburton Cheney? Preston Bush's grandson, who thought his Daddy had missed out on exploiting the political capitol gained by Desert Storm? (Family scores: another reason to avoid political families, IMO.) Were they blinded by hubris?

Were those who run the media, that shilled for Bushco, to help them convince the masses that invading Iraq was a matter of our own survival, as well as honor and something all decent people around the globe owed the 911 victims?

The ones who actually had the power to get us into war and the means to propagandize the masses--were they really focusing on things like hubris (or American exceptionalism, or religion or freedom or democracy or justice for the 911 victims)? Or were things like that the things the masses were supposed to focus on while the DC magicians were getting what they wanted from us?

American exceptionalism, like bread and circus, is a great tool for manipulating the masses. But hubris alone doesn't pay for your kids' boarding schools, let alone make those big donation to the schools and unversities.

Power is good, too, but, if you ain't pre-natally lucky enough to be Preston's grandbaby, you even need to get money to buy power. So, we're right back to money.

Ignore the misdirection of the magic show. Keep it simple. Follow the money. From the tax on tea (and other other imports and exports) to Nixon and Rebozo to Enron and Halliburton, it's usually very good exceptional American political advice, and probably every other country, too.

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Response to merrily (Reply #9)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 10:02 AM

15. Interesting point. "Blinded by hubris" implies good intentions but failed due to arrogance. I don't

 

think the Bush administration/PNAC/Neocons had good intentions.

If they did have good intentions, they could have tried to convince the rest of us based on those intentions, not WMD that by the time we went to war they knew for sure didn't exist after the UN reports of 12 days earlier.

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Response to stevenleser (Reply #15)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 10:06 AM

20. I do no think the definition of hubris includes genuine good intentions, ever.

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Response to Fred Sanders (Reply #20)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 10:10 AM

22. The phrase is "blinded by hubris" not just plain hubris. Blinded by hubris implies there was good

 

intent but it got fouled up by the 'hubris'.

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Response to stevenleser (Reply #22)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 11:11 AM

27. Hubris is simply "excessive price or self-confidence"

Nothing there about good intentions. The "loss of contact with reality" part seems especially apt.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hubris

Hubris (/ˈhjuːbrɪs/, also hybris, from ancient Greek ὕβρις in religious terms means extreme pride or self-confidence that leads to offence spoken or done towards the God(s), usually harshly punished after. . . . Hubris often indicates a loss of contact with reality and an overestimation of one's own competence, accomplishments or capabilities, especially when the person exhibiting it is in a position of power.

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Response to starroute (Reply #27)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 11:17 AM

28. That's correct. But what is being suggested is altered by the two words proceeding it. nt

 

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Response to stevenleser (Reply #28)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 12:07 PM

35. "Blinded by hubris" doesn't suggest good intentions to me

It suggests something more like being blind to your own arrogance and self-conceit.

Hubris is the opposite of humility. Humility says, "This is what I think, but I could be wrong." Hubris never admits it's wrong and it never admits the possibility of failure."

The attitude of the people who took us into Iraq was, "We're the bosses of the world, and this is our chance to prove it." No good intentions there. The democracy-building stuff was part of the advertising campaign, designed to win over interventionist liberals. But there was none of that among the people actually making the decisions.

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Response to starroute (Reply #35)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 12:11 PM

36. This might help, try these out...

 

A. He wanted to do this bad thing, but he wasn't successful because he was blinded by hubris.

B. He wanted to do this good thing, but he wasn't successful because he was blinded by hubris.

Which one works?

"A." Doesn't really make any sense. If you already know someone is doing a bad thing, chances are hubris, or greed or various other nefarious emotions are involved.

The "blinded by hubris" modifier works if you are referring to some good intentions someone had but were unsuccessful

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Response to stevenleser (Reply #36)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 12:31 PM

43. Neither one works because hubris isn't a success/failure thing

How about, "He is blinded by hubris, which keeps him from realizing his own overreach and arrogance, and his plans may fail spectacularly or may appear to succeed in the short run but will still create massive blowback and unintended consequences."

As one example, think about current Israeli policies towards the Palestinians. Blinded by hubris, would you agree? They think they're untouchable. They think they can get away with stuff that no other country in the world would get away with. And though you might be able to speculate about any number of possible outcomes, all of them would be disastrous in the long run.

Because hubris.

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Response to starroute (Reply #43)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 12:32 PM

44. It's not hubris. It's "blinded by hubris" were talking about a phrase, not a word. nt

 

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Response to starroute (Reply #27)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 02:32 PM

67. According to the wiki, hubris had a lot to do with sex as well.

Wow. When my class studied Greek mythology, all I learned about hubris was that it meant a person who aspires to be like a god. Not exactly the whole story, apparently.

Was I gullible!

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Response to stevenleser (Reply #15)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 12:56 PM

45. I believe that, at the very least, Cheney, Bush, Powell and Tenet

had doubts significant enough to have insisted that the inspections continue--if the goal had been doing everything possible to avoid war. I believe the inspections were cut short because it had become apparent that Saddam had no WMD and not because they panicked that "the smoking gun might come in the form of a mushroom cloud" any second. Not because they thought Saddam had nukes that he'd managed to conceal from our satellites, spies, etc.

Before the invasion, it was mushroom clouds, no time to lose, etc. After the invasion, it was that we suspected chemical weapons, gas, etc. Jeez, even a respectable size gang probably has those--but apparently Iraq did not.

So, the story became, almost seamlessly, "No one can deny that the world is better off without Saddam Hussein." How do we know no one can deny that? Because Condi said so. Many more times than only once, too, bless her heart.

Me, though? I bet some of the dead Iraqis that we never even bothered to count and the over 100,000 who were displaced might beg to differ.

BTW, I am not sure hubris implies good intentions gone awry unintentionally. You might want to check the wiki.

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Response to stevenleser (Reply #15)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 04:09 PM

80. Response

Please click here.

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Response to merrily (Reply #9)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 10:06 AM

18. +1 gazillion. War is always about making rich people richer. nt

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Response to valerief (Reply #18)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 01:00 PM

46. Yet, the Egyptians somehow managed 1000 years of peace AND

gold sandals and gold beds, etc for their pharaohs. Not to mention those honking big statues.

Those were the days, my friend.

World War II supposedly got the country out of the Depression, but our wars seem only to depress us.

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Response to merrily (Reply #46)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 01:53 PM

60. Today being rich isn't enough. The rich continually have to be richer.

Like U.S. wars, it never ends.

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Response to valerief (Reply #60)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 02:14 PM

62. Well, they can't think only of themselves, you know. They're

not selfish, after all. For example, the trusts of John D. Rockefeller and his brother are still paying annual amounts to their descendants. I think they will end relatively soon, whereupon those still alive will split the principal. So, if you are going to be that considerate, you'd best pile up the Benjamins while alive.

Also, I've read that John D. did enjoy throwing a handful of pennies into a group of children and watching them pick them up.

All heart, he was.

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Response to merrily (Reply #9)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 10:24 AM

25. Exactly. It always and always will be about the money. All the way down the chain.

I mean, I am a sure there were a few people who deeply cared about the people. Just as I am sure there were quite a few people who, overcome with grief from the attacks of 9/11, wanted justice. So much so that the careful manipulation of messaging and obscurement of facts and reasoned debate was used against those people to get them to support a massive money grab totally unconnected to the events they were obsessing over.
Of course, now I am venturing into the land of CT and I don't want this moved or locked.

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Response to merrily (Reply #9)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 02:45 PM

70. exactly.....even more, I suspect that the

excuse of "democracy" was a cover for exactly the opposite: continual chaos and destabilization.....so much easier to continually exploit people in that situation.

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Response to bbgrunt (Reply #70)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 03:26 PM

73. Never thought of that, but it's not out of the realm

of conceivability.

Sometimes, I just can't tell where evil leaves off and ineptitude begins.

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Response to marmar (Original post)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 09:13 AM

10. You can see more than one facet of an issue, Mr. Hedges.

 

Yes, what Bush and his ilk did was horrible. But the 'Islamic State' boys have been horrible on their own for a lot longer than that.

I don't have any sympathy for American or Islamic torturers.
[hr][font color="blue"][center]Stop looking for heroes. BE one.[/center][/font][hr]

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Response to randome (Reply #10)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 10:07 AM

21. Morality

Moral issues are based on our actions, not on what others do. The point of Hedges' speech was that the invasion of Iraq was wrong, not that Islamic "torturers" were right.

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Response to yellowwoodII (Reply #21)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 10:11 AM

23. I can see that point.

 

But calling them 'ghosts' and 'specters' implies wanting to right a wrong. These torturing maniacs are not trying to right any wrongs, they simply see an opportunity (that Bush/Cheney provided) to seize power for their own horrible purposes.
[hr][font color="blue"][center]Don't ever underestimate the long-term effects of a good night's sleep.[/center][/font][hr]

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Response to randome (Reply #23)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 10:29 AM

26. The Most Poignant Point

Even if our invasion had been "right, or somehow "justified," it was going to have consequences--what we are seeing now. The cheerleaders for the Iraq War should have been wise enough to understand the consequences.

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Response to randome (Reply #10)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 01:02 PM

47. Not even for the American torturers after Bush left office?

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Response to marmar (Original post)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 09:33 AM

11. More like this.

 

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Response to marmar (Original post)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 09:53 AM

12. Interesting piece. I wonder who actually wrote it?

 

...

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Response to truebrit71 (Reply #12)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 10:03 AM

16. .

 


[hr][font color="blue"][center]You should never stop having childhood dreams.[/center][/font][hr]

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Response to truebrit71 (Reply #12)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 12:02 PM

34. *snort*

 

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Response to NuclearDem (Reply #34)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 11:50 PM

91. Always interesting to see who takes amusement in an important voice from

the Left being taken down a notch.

Yeah, it's possible Hedges may be proven a plagiarist, but I don't find anything amusing in it at all.

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Response to Hissyspit (Reply #91)

Tue Jun 24, 2014, 12:41 PM

93. My copy of American Fascists doesn't take any joy in it.

 

However, it was a joke, and one I found funny. Lighten up.

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Response to truebrit71 (Reply #12)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 01:03 PM

48. Does it really matter?

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Response to merrily (Reply #48)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 01:13 PM

54. Yes.

 

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Response to truebrit71 (Reply #54)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 01:28 PM

58. And the selfless do gooder without sin casts the stone.

When I asked if it mattered, I was unaware of the plagiarism bit.. I thought the reference was to a ghost writer or staffer. However, I read about plagiarism downthread. Please see replies 51 and 56.


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Response to marmar (Original post)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 09:57 AM

13. I reason I knew we were wrong "before" the Iraq war started is ...

 

because of the emotional pride the nation was being buried in. Pride always comes before the downfall. "The Power of Pride" bumper sticker ...I always hated and marked whoever had one as being stupid and dangerous. Just like those that were quick to attach a flag to their vehicles. Those flags were warnings of danger to me ...their was another idiot driving. Besides the US pride there was the whole twisted idea that Saddam attacked us floating around. I was amazed to find out that so many really believed that. This is what happens when emotional blind pride takes over ...it's dangerous not just for america ....but all the 100's of thousands of innocent people who died and are still dying. Those people and children didn't attack us on 911. People need to wake up about what the US government, the MIC and the 1% are doing to us and everyone else in the world. We are being played!

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Response to marmar (Original post)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 10:01 AM

14. Hubris, imperialistic hubris, is what it was, and for many, still is; is it a good thing?

hu·bris
ˈh)yo͞obris/
noun
excessive pride or self-confidence.
synonyms: arrogance, conceit, haughtiness, hauteur, pride, self-importance, egotism, pomposity, superciliousness, superiority; More
antonyms: humility
(in Greek tragedy) excessive pride toward or defiance of the gods, leading to nemesis.

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Response to Fred Sanders (Reply #14)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 10:03 AM

17. I think "hubris" gives the Bush admin too much credit. See my post above. nt

 

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Response to Fred Sanders (Reply #14)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 01:04 PM

49. It's worse than the dictionary definition. Check the wiki.

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Response to marmar (Original post)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 11:18 AM

29. "But the dance of death is intoxicating. Once it begins you whirl in an ecstatic frenzy...

Death’s embrace, which feels at first like sexual lust, tightens and tightens until you suffocate."

I have a mental image of Rick Perry and Wayne LaPierre as bandleaders.


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Response to factsarenotfair (Reply #29)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 03:34 PM

75. McCain as lead vocalist?

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Response to merrily (Reply #75)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 04:07 PM

79. Perfect. n/t

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Response to marmar (Original post)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 11:23 AM

30. Who wrote this piece?

I mean, really wrote it?

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Response to frazzled (Reply #30)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 01:05 PM

50. Does it really matter?

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Response to merrily (Reply #50)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 01:13 PM

53. Yes.

 

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Response to truebrit71 (Reply #53)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 02:28 PM

64. Wow. You're really zealous about bashing Hedges.

You answered this when I asked you, yet you felt compelled to answer for frazzled, too?

Hedges must have done something really awful to you.

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Response to merrily (Reply #64)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 02:30 PM

65. Was that privately addressed to frazzled or was it posted publicly on the internet..

 

..if it was the former, my apologies...

Not awful, just betrayed my trust as a reader of his works.

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Response to truebrit71 (Reply #65)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 02:43 PM

69. Still, you answered the question put to you AND the one put to frazzled.

Seems like overkill. That and the rest of your posts on this thread about Hedges do suggest to me a certain eagerness.

just betrayed my trust as a reader of his works.


Even assuming Hedges is a plagiarist--and that is not clear from what I found on found on the internet so far-- most people wouldn't take it that so personally.

The guy who drew a certain cartoon mouse before Walter E. Disney did might take Mickey Mouse personally, but most other people don't. Same with the writer who thought up a little boy wizard before Rowling. When I read about both those cases, I was sure the people who did it first would have won the lawsuits. But, the courts found for Disney and Rowling. Go figure.

I realize the standards for plagiarism are not the same as for copyright, but my research so far has not come up with any as egregious or as clear cut as you seem convinced of.

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Response to marmar (Original post)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 11:46 AM

31. What is with all this "who really wrote this" idiocy upthread?


Is that supposed to be some kind of substitute for a lack of legitimate criticism of Chris Hedges? ..... Comically daft.


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Response to marmar (Reply #31)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 11:49 AM

32. Sounds Like

Having read quite a bit of Hedges' writing, I'd say it sounds very much like his writing.

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Response to marmar (Reply #31)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 11:57 AM

33. That tends to happen when you get caught plagiarizing other people's work.

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Response to name not needed (Reply #33)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 01:09 PM

51. Like Joe Biden did?

I thought that was a pretty dumb controversy.

Like the Beatles did?

Like the guy who wrote Roots did?

Like Obama did in 2008?

(I thought that was even dumber than the Biden thing.)

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Response to name not needed (Reply #33)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 04:40 PM

81. gee, I wondered who would bring up this distraction.

It has nothing to do with his message.

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Response to marmar (Reply #31)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 12:13 PM

37. Nope. He got busted plagiarizing...so it is now a legitimate question...

 

...i have really enjoyed his writing, assuming it was his of course, in the past...

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Response to truebrit71 (Reply #37)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 12:15 PM

38. But...

Doesn't this distract from the content of the writing?
Do you agree or disagree with it?

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Response to yellowwoodII (Reply #38)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 12:17 PM

40. It certainly does, which is a tremendous shame...

 

....The content of this article, whomever wrote it, is very interesting and thought-provoking..

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Response to truebrit71 (Reply #37)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 12:16 PM

39. I did not know that. How bad was the allegation?

 

Did he lift a phrase and forget to give credit or was it a whole paragraph or whole article?

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Response to truebrit71 (Reply #41)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 12:30 PM

42. I live in fear of accidentally doing this on my radio show.

 

I try to start every segment by naming any articles or other broadcast media where parts of the segment might have come from, but I read dozens of articles for each show and its very possible a phrase or idea might enter my mind that I subsequently use on the show without remembering that I got it from somewhere.

I read the article. I'm not sure if what was pointed out was intentional or accidental. Seems damning but...

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Response to stevenleser (Reply #42)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 01:12 PM

52. I know...in today's world where everything tends to blend together it is very easy...

 

...to get things mixed up....but using the written word, it should be much easier to at least go back and 'check the record' to see if someone else wrote the same, or very similar thing...it seems highly unlikely that two passages, from two different people, would use almost identical words..

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Response to stevenleser (Reply #39)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 03:39 PM

77. The allegations from the RW seem different from the view of the left.

http://www.opednews.com/articles/Chris-Hedges-Accused-of-Pl-by-Donn-Marten-Chris-Hedges_Chris-Hedges_Christofascists_Fascist-140615-412.html



ETA. Correction. DUers on this thread, and presumed to be leftists, apparently are more aligned with view of the right on this.

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Response to truebrit71 (Reply #37)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 01:22 PM

56. Maybe it is a legit question, and maybe

one could imagine that, having stepped into it once, like Mike Barnicle, the Beatles, Joe Biden and so many others, he is not repeating the behavior and give him the benefit of the doubt until he proves he's beyond redemption?

Besides, is it really a legitmate question when you don't have a reasonable expectation that the people you are "asking" have an answer? And when that supposedly legitimate is your only comment about the article. Or is it more of a hit and run, gratuitous smear?

Plagiarism involves dishonesty, so, if we are going to judge, let's be honest. That was a slur, not a legitimate question. And why? Because plagiarism is such a heinous as to cancel out everything good the man has ever done or tried to do?

I didn't know Hedges plagiarized. But, now that I know, my opinion is, if that is the worse thing he ever did, I still respect and admire him more than I do many other people. He's done more good for others than most people even aspire to do.

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Response to merrily (Reply #56)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 01:24 PM

57. Google it. He did it on multiple occasions.

 

I am truly disappointed in this situation as I really enjoyed reading his work...

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Response to truebrit71 (Reply #57)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 01:35 PM

59. I was in the process of googling it until I saw my post tab go yellow.

Newspaper people have been caught doing it multiple times, too. However, once caught, they generally turn around And, again, it's not such a heinous thing, as sins go. And does not outweigh for me the good to which Hedges has devoted his life.

If you enjoyed his writing, it's too bad you deprive yourself of it, even to the extent that the only comments you've been able to bring yourself to make about the article are about plagiarism Not sure why you're doing that to yourself, but it is what it is.

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Response to truebrit71 (Reply #57)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 02:24 PM

63. I googled. Seems a right wing publication was the sole source of

the accusations. (It was once a left magazine, but it was bought out and the staff completely changed,)

Most of the articles about it are based only on that one magazine--and most of them appear on right wing websites. Of course, that does not mean the source was wrong. It does, however, mean I am not swallowing the story whole.

Hedges denies any intentional plagiarism. And at least one writer who is not right wing called it an obvious right wing smear campaign against Hedges.

http://www.opednews.com/articles/Chris-Hedges-Accused-of-Pl-by-Donn-Marten-Chris-Hedges_Chris-Hedges_Christofascists_Fascist-140615-412.html




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Response to merrily (Reply #63)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 02:39 PM

68. Hedges' publisher is who busted him on it.

 

And Christopher Ketcham is not a right wing hack.

Lefty journalists have enough trouble trying to make a living without people trying to pass off their work as their own.

And frankly, I don't buy the "unintentional" line. The passages are far too similar for it to be anything other than deliberate. Regardless of intention, though, it's still theft.

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Response to NuclearDem (Reply #68)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 03:14 PM

71. I am still not sure anyone "busted him."

Someone noticed similarities, yes. But that is not the same as busting someone for plagiarism.


Lefty journalists have enough trouble trying to make a living without people trying to pass off their work as their own.


You're very kind to worry about Hedges harming "lefty" writers. I worry about all writers.. However, Hemingway is one of the sources cited. I don't think Hemingway's books will stop selling because some lines from them appeared in something Hedges wrote. If Hedges plagiarized and if someone gets hurt by that, it will be Hedges, not Hemingway.

Unless Hedges published the work of some writer, lefty or not, before the writer had a chance to sell it themselves, I don't know that Hedges; alleged plagiarism is interfering with anyone's ability to make a living. If the ournalists who were allegedly ripped off are upset, I haven't come across that yet. Still researching. If they're not, I don't care. I guess I'm just amoral, eh?

Regardless of intention, though, it's still theft.


I don't think that's true at all. Theft is based on intent. As best I know, all things for which we condemn someone are dependent on the fact that the person intended to do something wrong. If someone takes your lunch from the office fridge, genuinely believing it's his, that is a mistake, not a theft.



I guess teachers do a great job of convincing people that plagiarism is one of the most heinous things they can do. And, as students, that may be true. I am not at all sure it's the worst possible thing outside that context, though. Too bad teachers don't focus more on things like war and torture and indifference to human suffering.

As I said, I haven't finished looking into it. However, unless I see that Hedges is proven to have plagiarized and that caused some writer actual damage, not theoretical or imaginary, I don't know if I care, even a little.

And I still think that the totality of Hedges life outweighs this by a lot. Sorry, I just cannot get get all righteous about it. Maybe Mother Teresa could, but I've done worse things in my life. Then again, I doubt Mother Teresa would have condemned Hedges this much either.

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Response to NuclearDem (Reply #68)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 03:23 PM

72. At least one "lefty writer" seems a lot angrier about the smears

than about Hedges alleged plagiarism.


The New Republic is a corporate Democrat pimping mouthpiece from which some of the most cowardly and dishonest smear campaigns are launched into the national media cesspool on behalf of the corrupt establishment. It was earlier this year that the magazine/website did a brutal hatchet job on former government contractor turned heroic NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden and journalist Glenn Greenwald. The epic sliming - which also threw in Wikileaks leader Julian Assange for good measure - was penned by Sean Wilentz, a pal of Bill and Hillary Clinton and logged in at over 6,000 words, throwing the kitchen sink at the two in an effort to kill the messenger. The magazine also promoted last year's Rand Paul plagiarism smear campaign and in targeting their latest victim, the same charge is leveled at Pulitzer Prize winning former New York Times foreign correspondent Chris Hedges, a fierce critic of the warfare state and the menace of mutated vulture capitalism.


http://www.opednews.com/articles/Chris-Hedges-Accused-of-Pl-by-Donn-Marten-Chris-Hedges_Chris-Hedges_Christofascists_Fascist-140615-412.html

So interesting to see what happens at DU when one right wing website after another puts a writer--and a remarkably decent human being--who happens to the left of Hillary on the chopping block.

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Response to merrily (Reply #72)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 04:43 PM

82. the expose' was written by the husband of someone...

....whose words were apparently unattributed to her. His first sentence in the expose' says that Hedges was on his radar.

I suppose that zeal could have colored the coverage.

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Response to grasswire (Reply #82)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 05:09 PM

84. Thanks, grasswire, but, at this very moment, I

am reading something that says the author from whom Hedges was caught lifting was Matt Katz, who doesn't sound like a wife. I guess I just have to keep researching until I put it all together.

But, I do know from reading the New Republic wiki a while back that that New Republic was acquired and completely turned from left to right. Off the bat, I have to wonder why they paid to flip a leftist publication, rather than simply starting a new one with no acquisition cost.

In any event, as I posted upthread, the fact that New Republic and a bunch of conservative websites rehashing the NR story are about the only things I saw when I googled makes me suspicious. They are also bashing the NYT because it "won't investigate." Um, he left there 8 years ago and theres no hint of plagiarism then or in the 8 years since. So, why would they? But, the fact that someone is implying something is wrong with the NYT because it hasn't investigated when it has no reason to do so tells me someone really wants to mess up Hedges.

I have to say, though, that even the bits of the NR story that I have read so far speak in terms of allegations. Not DU, though. Here, he's dead in the water guilty, based on allegations from a right wing publication. And so guilty, that people no longer have an interest in reading his articles, even though they were supposedly fans before. And he's putting leftist writers out of work, too. And, even if he did not do it intentionally, it's still theft.

I guess the worst thing you can be on DU is a populist.

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Response to merrily (Reply #84)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 06:31 PM

86. sad all around

The thing that gives me most pause is that it was Harper's magazine's fact checker who noticed. And I have the utmost respect for Harper's.

Many people are deeply disturbed by this, and I hope Hedges' voice is not deterred.

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Response to grasswire (Reply #86)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 07:28 PM

87. Or so the husband says. (I've read more now.)

I am wondering what motive the fact checker would have had to be so open about internal business with an outsider? If I told stuff like that, I'd be afraid of being fired.


What is lost in all this, as well as just how good a person and a writer Hedges's is, is that the piece that Harper supposedly killed was an investigative report on poverty in Camden, NJ.

What bothered me was the possibility that Hedges may have lied to the fact checker about Katz.

If the piece is true, this may indicate something wrong with Hedges-- inability to meet deadlines for some reason, maybe. You never know what is going on in someone's body or someone's life.

Jane Hamsher noted that the original article contained almost no evidence of plagiarism. The Times saw no reason to dig up his old pieces and ....


From the original (smear?) piece:

In an aside near the end of his piece, Ketcham also includes this cautionary paragraph:

I reached out both to Chris Hedges and to the Nation Institute’s executive director, Taya Kitman, with a summary of the instances of plagiarism uncovered in the course of this investigation. In an e-mail, Kitman told me that, upon becoming aware of this story “some months ago” — when in December of 2012 I apprised the Nation Institute of the article in progress — both the Nation Institute and Nation Books “conducted a review of Hedges’s writing in his capacity as a Nation Books author and as an investigative fund reporter.” Kitman wrote that this internal investigation did not find any instances of plagiarism. “Chris has been one of our most valuable and tireless public intellectuals,” she said in her e-mailed statement.

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Response to grasswire (Reply #86)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 07:44 PM

88. Did you read Hedge's response?



http://www.newrepublic.com/article/118212/chris-hedges-responds-accusations-plagiarism


Ketcham writes an article accusing Hedges, Hedges defends himself, but Ketcham gets the last word, with no opportunity for "the accused" to respond. Sigh.

Anyway, I don't see this as an open and shut case by any means. I think DU's "love" of liberals is showing once again. If I have to take the side of a husband vindicating his wife that several publications refused to publish until a RW one took it, over that of Chris Hedges' and several of the entities he wrote for, I am going to give the Pulitzer Prize winner and his employers the benefit of the doubt.

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Response to merrily (Reply #88)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 07:59 PM

89. sounds fair, trulyl

unfortunately, this will always be shoved in his face.

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Response to truebrit71 (Reply #37)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 03:30 PM

74. Plagiarism has not been proven and he denies it.

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Response to marmar (Reply #31)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 04:53 PM

83. Hedges has written disapprovingly of the president's right-wing ideology

 

therefore he is persona non grata at Obama Underground.

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Response to marmar (Original post)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 01:20 PM

55. Our dear leaders have painted such a huge bullseye on America

The callous slaughter we deliver is no different from the callous slaughter we receive. Our jihadists—George W. Bush, Dick Cheney, Paul Wolfowitz, Donald Rumsfeld, Richard Perle, Thomas Friedman and Tommy Franks—who assured us that swift and overwhelming force in Iraq would transform the Middle East into an American outpost of progress, are no less demented than the jihadists approaching Baghdad. These two groups of killers mirror each other. This is what we have spawned. And this is what we deserve.

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Response to marmar (Original post)

Mon Jun 23, 2014, 09:56 PM

90. K & R !!!

 


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Response to marmar (Original post)

Tue Jun 24, 2014, 03:14 AM

92. K&R

 

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