A Voiceless Left Faces History’s Monster

Despite all its armed might and long history of conquests, America remains a perpetually frightened country without a strong movement to protest this imperialism and warmongering, notes poet Phil Rockstroh.

By Phil Rockstroh

Rumors of war and the lexicon of war permeate the culture of empires, and the U.S. empire is not an exception. In a concomitant manner, the specter of violent death pervades the imagery of the U.S. entertainment industry and stalks the citizens’ dreams.

At the start of the U.S. invasion of Iraq in 2003, President George W. Bush ordered the U.S. military to conduct a devastating aerial assault on Baghdad, known as “shock and awe.”

Present circumstances merge with the sleeping monster of history: Close your eyes and images of cross burnings, lynchings, mountains of bison skulls, flaring veils of napalm, and blooming mushroom clouds rise from within.

All the bristling, military armaments of the Pentagon cannot turn back the raging storm.

The mere existence of vast arrays of weapons, deployed or not, does great harm to the soul of a nation. U.S. Americans are fearful, day and night. We would not feel secure even if we ensconced ourselves in an armory.

An empire, built on the backs of slaves, both actual and de facto, with its expansion across the continent expedited by genocide, has conjured internal Furies — raging apparitions, borne of the nation’s collective soul and of nature’s fury, that cannot be repelled by weapons of any make.

Amid the empire of the feckless, we on the Left have been rendered all but voiceless. We wander in a wasteland of resentment, marginalized, denied a voice in cultural discourse. Online, we gibber and snarl at each other and curse our predicament like Dante’s figures of the damned in pits of the Inferno. By all indications, we are bereft of the knowledge of where and how to even begin the dialog.

Yet: Recently, by a resounding margin, Venezuelans vote to retain socialism. (The nation’s citizenry are fully cognizant that U.S. imperialist subterfuge is the root of their nation’s troubles.)

Concurrently, polls of former citizens of the fallen USSR reveal, the majority favor delivering capitalism to the landfill of history and reestablishing communism. (Unlike all to many U.S. Americans, they know they have been bamboozled.)

Although: Across Europe, the hard, racist right is in ascendancy. A predictable phenomenon, due to liberalism’s serial betrayals of the middle and laboring classes in behalf of their capitalist vampire benefactors. The more undiluted the form of capitalism — the greater the levels of deprivation and attendant fear and displaced anger evinced by a power-bereft citizenry. The only factors that have saved capitalism from itself, on an historical basis, have been measures of progressive reform and piecemeal, socialist policies.

Benefiting Few, Exploiting Many

And that is the reality that frightens the capitalist over-class and motivates them to set into action their scheming, prevaricating operatives and propaganda-bandying shit-kickers. To wit, their ruthlessness knows no limit in regard to preventing capitalism’s exploited multitudes from gaining an even glancing degree of awareness of: The system was, from the get-go, designed to benefit a ruthless few and to the detriment of the many.

Ousted Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi shortly before he was murdered on Oct. 20, 2011.

Thus we discover, the reason capitalism’s elite invest so much time, effort, and money rigging the game, from the political structure to mass media. It is the reason one could never have an honest dialog with the beneficiaries of the system. Where would be the profit for them in risking their litany of lies being countered and their false mythos exposed as the life-negating fraud that it is? Honesty and openness were not among the factors that enabled the capitalist elite to ascend to a position of dominance.

Willful and belligerent ignorance comprises the brick and mortar of the capitalist system’s mental architecture; the structure stands on a foundation of lies. But the phenomenon presents dissidents with an opportunity because what appears to be an implacable barrier is but a collective mirage, a vapor of the mass mind. What appears to be an all-powerful system is but a group hallucination, a joint dream of interior phantoms. This is the reason, when we attempt to fight back, we appear to be flailing into empty air.

To dissipate the undead nightmare, we must reimagine the image and do so from within the living landscape of the imagination; otherwise, we are mistaking a mirage for terra firma.

As for myself, I’m a member of the Nambia Liberation Army. The calling of a poet is to make the invisible visible.

Of course, the flaming orange, ambulatory dumpster fire Trump should be mocked for proclaiming that there exists on planet earth a nation called Nambia. The man has the range of knowledge of some bar-stool blowhard, the insufferable type who begins almost every wit-defiant declaration with “irregardless” or “actually” before launching into a false narrative based on a inane premise misinformed by a belligerently obtuse, fact-resistant Weltanschauung.

Deluded Slaves

The same applies to toxic innocent types who believe capitalist (so called) democracies exist to respond to the will of the citizenry. Who would have chosen for high office the sleazy, craven, and sub-cretinous gallery of grotesques known as the Western political class? Only slaves who have been convinced that the clank and clatter of their shackles is the very song of freedom would argue that this extant, waking nightmare arrived as a matter of choice.

A homeless man sitting on a street. (Public Domain, George Hodan)

Attendant to the deception: The notion that the dismal circumstance will recede by the banishment of Donald Trump from the scene. Trump is merely a representation of one of the genera of imps squatting in the dark recesses of capitalism’s forsaken soul. He is the very embodiment of a crackpot realist.

Crackpot realist types, as is the case with Trump, view and present themselves as emissaries from “the real world,” as steely-nerved men of action. The breed has a compulsion to bandy dismissive declarations, such as, “that is just mere talk. I offer real world solutions.” And, in the magniloquent lingua franca of Trump, he possesses the “best” (crackpot) mindset and he, and he alone, will deliver the bestly of the bestest of real-world solutions.

Yet, outside the feedback loop of those indoctrinated by Calvinist-cum-capitalist conditioning, talk is action. Talk is eros. Deeply depressed people lose both their eros and their voice. Well-written books of prose and poems speak in a penetrating voice. The problem is, all too many of the working class and the poor have been bullied by the dominant order into believing that we have no voice — a voice that is capable of giving rise to the inner self, both lambent of mind and plangent of heart, thus provides agency towards action and gives context to experience. The crackpot realist notion that insists, conversation is a lesser function of humanity amounts to soul-decimating tyranny, and is a product of the Puritan Ethic, a coda for slaves. Words are the handmaiden of action and experience.

Talk is audio architecture and dance. Words are winged yet speak from the bones of the earth. Denied expression, we lose heart; then we lose our humanity. Suggestion for approaching and engaging in propitious dialog: Don’t demand final, definitive answers. The very notion, in an instant, demeans and destroys the potential of unfolding, organic phenomenon.

If you persist, you will have deracinated dialog from its natural habitat — a breathing landscape of infinite mystery. Acceptance of the following is crucial: Acts of exploration will serve to uncover more questions.

The heart is not a mere pump; it is the hub of imagination; it yearns for experience, thinks in living imagery, and will lead, if followed, into participation mystique. Any attendant answers … are an after-the-fact phenomenon. Then the scene shifts. The structure of the old order becomes a veil of dust, its dogma, the admonition of a long-dead ghost. A ghost is an uncoupled habit, a self-resonating feedback loop shuffling through a fixated mind, an entity devoid of life thus cannot generate novel questions.

I question; therefore, I reveal signs of life. Yet the questions must remain open-ended, for when you insist on a forced finality, you have arrested and killed the process; you have attempted to render the voluble soul of the world into a didactic corpse.

President Trump speaking to the United Nations General Assembly on Sept. 19, 2017. (Screenshot from Whitehouse.gov)

For the affront, its life-sustaining fire, that suffuses every particle in the cosmos, will respond with the worst of all insults. It will deem you a bore and turn its numinous face away from you.

Speaking of the numinous, with Halloween approaching, our four-and-a-half-year-old donned his Halloween costume and exhorted me to play one of his favorite games i.e., let’s pretend.

“When mommy comes in, make her think we’ve turned into monsters.”

Drawing on the Method, I reach down deep within and feel the rage of the besieged earth, thus knowing what my son will come upon later in life: Our humanity is inseparable from the monstrous. To live is to live off death — but, in the case of Late Stage Capitalist humankind, the monster imperative has shifted into runaway, has become a self-resonating feedback loop of destructive impulses.

The kid is transmigrating through an obsession with monsters phase. Making his way through a wilderness of archetypes, he has picked up on an effable truth about his species … that will take a lifetime to process. All who are aware are wounded by the apprehension. If you do not take hold of the monster within, he will take hold of you. Both on a personal basis as well as the monster we know as human history.

Phil Rockstroh is a poet, lyricist and philosopher bard living, now, in Munich, Germany. He may be contacted: [email protected] and at FaceBook: http://www.facebook.com/phil.rockstroh

64 comments for “A Voiceless Left Faces History’s Monster

  1. Mild-ly - Facetious
    November 5, 2017 at 12:08

    Creative writing and journalism are wholly separate bodies. Some of us seek substance over form. The content with substance actually leads into deeper thought and into serious contemplation.

    Straight news is simply something gobbled up at dinner and forgotten next morning. Ho-Hum,what else is new, is the point of view, as Majority Rules imply.

    Comments showcase the sentiment of the body of everyday Americans, whose mind is typically satisfied with the Status Quo. It’s a thing about Mind Control.

    Here, something from a Non-Mainstream POV would cultivate thoughtfulness or cause deep insult.The choice is critical.
    With Trump, we’re stepping into a tomorrow that we’ll own.


  2. Peter Hill
    October 30, 2017 at 19:30

    I love seeing the moniker “barstool blowhard” in print now since I’ve been calling him that since first seeing him in his campaign.

  3. October 30, 2017 at 13:35

    Good job Phil Rockstroh you got 60 people off the couch and at least thinking, not always thinking correctly, but at least they are thinking, that is more than they do as couch potatoes staring at TV letting them spoon-feed Washington and corporate media “gospel”..
    Keep up the good work Phil.

  4. Delia Ruhe
    October 29, 2017 at 16:36

    “We wander in a wasteland of resentment, marginalized, denied a voice in cultural discourse. Online, we gibber and snarl at each other and curse our predicament like Dante’s figures of the damned in pits of the Inferno.”

    This is the most accurate and succinct description of today’s Left, consisting of purists, each following his own leftist orthodoxy and denying the leftist credentials of everyone who isn’t in lock step with him. Sometimes it’s the imperfect leftists, or the hybrids, who are making an impact on behalf of the voiceless yet bickering Left, e.g., Michael Moore is still making movies and writing op-eds and attracting the kind of attention the whole wide spectrum of leftists should be enjoying. Leftists still bitch about him, as they do not accept that anyone exhibiting outraged patriotism–indeed, anyone exhibiting patriotism–can possibly be on the left.

    Wake up and grow up, lefties.

  5. MaDarby
    October 29, 2017 at 12:56

    While I found the article quite well done, I have had a problem with the “left” ever sense the days of SDS. My complaint is that what we did was completely ineffective – note the advance of Neoliberal ideology. The “left” and “liberals” have never really been those things. The “left” was all about getting elected and making new laws. This was stupid, not just naive.

    The real enemy of the citizens in the US has always been the “liberals” it was Johnson – a “liberal” who prosecuted Vietnam killing millions, it was the American people who voted for Nixon installing Kissinger in power, it was Carter – a “liberal” who gave power to Brzezinski, it was Clinton who killed Glass Steagall. On and on – the real enemy is Bernie Sanders and all the politicians like him.

    The Black Panther Party was then the only genuine left party in the US – there has not been a left party sense.

    The very idea that an Empire can be overthrown by using its own institutions against it has never worked in history and is a foolish path, yet people who call themselves “left” support Bernie Sanders a hack politician of the establishment and expect change while doing nothing but voting is rigged elections.

    The Empire is killing us in the streets and keeping us in poverty. I want the egno-deplorables and the Multi-letter bath-roomers to recognize that they have a common enemy and once that oppressive enemy with its divisions and strife is dealt with many of thes so-called issues will weather away. Provide for the needs of all people and let them create a better world, let them decide borders and community standards for their communities. BIG is what is killing people BIG government BIG corporations BIG everything is good for the oligarchy and their corporate money making machines and very bad for human societies.

  6. Mild-ly - Facetious
    October 28, 2017 at 19:50

    Creative writing and journalism are wholly separate bodies. Some of us seek substance over form. The content with substance actually leads into deeper thought and into serious contemplation.

    Straight news is simply something gobbled up at dinner and forgotten next morning. Ho-Hum,what else is new, is the point of view, as Majority Rules imply.

    Comments showcase the sentiment of the body of everyday Americans, whose mind is typically satisfied with the Status Quo. It’s a thing about Mind Control.

    Here, something from a Non-Mainstream POV would cultivate thoughtfulness or cause deep insult.The choice is critical.
    With Trump, we’re stepping into a tomorrow that we’ll own.


    • Susan Sunflower
      October 28, 2017 at 21:37

      I was web surfing … over at youtube and I was struck … by the general quiet of the youth … we’ve seen the media celebrate Black Lives Matter and the various University protest “movements” which (as I recall) primarily, black, minority and regressive if you believe in deplatforming those whose views you oppose.

      Robert Scheer on Chris Hedges on RT makes many points with which I concur. We have a terrifying lack of dissent. He points out that this is not new. There has pretty much “always” been a paranoia that your neighbors or your boss or your chruch would “find out” if you even simply entertain “radical notions” … which the internet facilitates, even if most conspiracy theories are … sadly … garbage, and garbage enough to raise questions of deliberate disinformation and “distraction” …

      Americans have been anxiously looking over their shoulder for a very very long time, to a degree that makes “the first amendment” almost irrelevant (adding in the erosion/disappearance of a “public space” in which to freely practice “free speech” and the “right of assembly”).

      At this point, people understand … beneath their skin, that their every movement is not just surveilled, but has been documented, available to retrieval “later” … and a degree of documentation from which there is no escape.

      I was listening the Elvis Costello — Less than Zero and Waiting for the End of the World — and wishing there were such mass-market, good-natured opposition, “resistance” today. I think of the subversion mass marketed by the Jefferson Airplane and Country Joe and the Fish … silence. This isn’t about “nostalgia”… it is about disappointment at the lack of healthy anger and creative outlet.

      My mother wanted to buy my boyfriend and I tickets to Hair as a HS graduation present … it was playing in its first incarnation on the Sunset Strip … we declined and for as long as we were together fought the commodification of the “counter culture” back in 1968 … Where are the writers, painters, poets, protest singers, graphic artists … particularly in this age of all-too-well funded (color-revolution seeding?) “resistance” … Anyone with a brain can see the apocalypse on the horizon? Got nothing to say about that? and having your “future plans” seem futile? All this consensus wrt the need for a new mobilization, a re-affirmation of values … reminds me of a hectoring church sermon about personal failures to engage … not really compelling.

      The endless victim confessions of sexual harassment (largely tolerated, bitched about but accepted) stand next to the 20-30 year old excuses wrt reporting Cosby (which I suspect was a NOTORIOUS “Dr. Feelgood” to be counted on to supply Quaaludes ) … It’s very world weary and cynicism enhancing … please, I’m not shocked by 10, 20 or 30 year old previously unreported rapes, kept secret to facilitate “careerism” …

      Scheer’s new book is titled “They Know Everything About Your” — It may be the kick in the pant we’ve all been wishing for.

      Zorba the Greek and Mr. Tamborine man inspired my personal vision of freedom … yours?

      • Susan Sunflower
        October 28, 2017 at 21:42

        To dance beneath the diamond sky with one hand waving free, silhouetted by the sea … still moves me.

  7. Rohit
    October 28, 2017 at 12:59

    I wish this had not been written by “we on the left”. Many people who are NOT on the left are in sympathy with your views. And among such people is our current president Donald Trump who objected to regime change,WHEN he was a candidate and even suggested that George W. Bush should have been impeached. So, your project is good, but please do not make it a “we on the left project”! Constant attacks on him by you on the left have delivered him into the hands of the Neocons. You should have had more sense.

    • john wilson
      October 28, 2017 at 14:22

      No Rohit,We didn’t deliver Trump into the hands of the Neocons, Trump presented himself on a platter for the Neocon vultures to pick his bones clean. Had no one said a word against Trump he would have been dissected and put back together in the image of the Neocons. He was big and loud but in reality he was a mere rabbit, smothered in beef dripping entering the den of a pack of ferocious starving Neocon wolves. For any president wanting to achieve what we thought Trump did want to achieve, he would have to have a powerful and experienced party behind him. He really only has his immediate family so he was devoured and regurgitated as the talking head and mouth piece for the Neocons. Don’t blame us, we voted for the man and he has been found wanting and weak.

      • October 28, 2017 at 14:38

        “he has been found wanting and weak.”…AMEN John,…and he always wants more…for himself!

    • Joe Tedesky
      October 28, 2017 at 18:32

      I think Trump perfected his political philosophy and strategy while he attended the 2011 White House Correspondence Dinner, and after dessert with his mind made up the Donald became the nightmare of the Republican Party.

  8. SJ Conti
    October 28, 2017 at 10:02

    Bravo Rave On This article is perfection

  9. zendeviant
    October 28, 2017 at 09:01

    Author should’ve written a poem, then an essay. Or visa versa. This is a very important subject, the inherent violence in amerikan culture. The resulting separation/segregation that it creates. The perpetual “them” who remains ever a threatening villan.

    The questions seem to be: Is perma-war a necessary and permanent part of the american experiment? Can we redefine the common goal, “success” to be a team metric? Can we still compete, in healthy ways, without falling into violence or, is competition the seed of violence?

    Will we find a way to recognize that we live in abundance and we’re our own worst enemy? Could the slogan for our new revolution be: “Quit now, you’re making it worse.”

    But instead of Howard Beale’s rant let’s try: “I’m cool with change and I’m not gonna fear any more!”

    Mebbe I should’ve written an essay, then a poem, then a letter to someones congressman, THEN a comment.

    shine bright

    • Joe Tedesky
      October 28, 2017 at 10:12
    • Zachary Smith
      October 28, 2017 at 12:25

      Author should’ve written a poem…

      The author may be a poet, but my search for a single example of his work turned up no results. All I found were videos. Maybe that’s the modern medium, but if so it’s not anything of interest to me.

      I’m old-fashioned enough to want my poetry in this format:

      From far, from eve and morning
      And yon twelve-winded sky,
      The stuff of life to knit me
      Blew hither: here am I.

      Now—for a breath I tarry
      Nor yet disperse apart—
      Take my hand quick and tell me,
      What have you in your heart.

      Speak now, and I will answer;
      How shall I help you, say;
      Ere to the wind’s twelve quarters
      I take my endless way.

      A. E. Housman (1859–1936)

  10. October 28, 2017 at 08:20

    The solution proposed is to tell new stories. An avalanche of new stories.

    Each person becomes a story teller, please. A representative imagination of cosmic powered biology manifest as human.

    And when the stories add up to describe a way of life that is fun and heals Earth.

    Earth humanity may find itself the first sentient beings to evolve past the technological barrier of capitalist pollution and war.

  11. Rob Craigmyle
    October 28, 2017 at 07:31

    We won’t need a happy ending to appreciate the poetic irony: Trump personifies an insustainable US political and professional culture corroding in Capital-Calvinate. The rest of the developed world may soon self-assuringly scapegoat the USA for personifying degenerate cronyism at the twilight of empires, declaring the psychotic US monster the primary threat to our world. At which point the tables would be turned very abrubtly for USis.

  12. geeyp
    October 28, 2017 at 06:50

    I will try to post this again (in case the other one doesn’t post). I am tired of the Pres. Trump trashing. The JFK records will not get totally released for another six months (54 years and counting is still not enough time for our “intelligence” agencies, you see). Perhaps then the mafia don of the George H.W. crime family will have passed away at that point. One less monster around.

  13. john wilson
    October 28, 2017 at 06:25

    The average Jo public rarely puts his head above the parapet of his TV screen, hamburger and a six pack of beer. The author seems to be complaining that the masses just don’t care what the state is doing in their name, but he forgets that the ‘masses’ have been trained from school days throughout adult hood not care or even think for themselves. The state and its MSM will do that for them. However, there has been a glimmer of light with ever more people watching alternative media like RT and Sputnik together with many well informed internet sites like this one. There are also quite a few break away journalists on their blogs who have started to shed light on the murky world of the lying bastards on MSM. This is obviously true because the Washington elite, MSM, the deep state etc have started to get worried and they have already began the process of shutting down or seriously stifling these alternative sources of news and comment. Over here in the UK we have a very colorful parliamentary candidate called ‘Lord screaming Such’ a truly bizarre character who sticks his finger up at the establishment. A few years back when a parliamentary seat became available halfway through the current governments tenure, there was a one off by-election as we call it. The government of the day had a huge majority and who ever won this seat would make absolutely no difference to the parliamentary arithmetic.Here was a chance for the voters to have some fun and vote in ‘Lord screaming such; and really get up the noses of the establishment. But what did they do? they voted for the same tired old establishment candidate like the stupid pathetic sheep that they are. I’m afraid sheep will always be sheep, hence the saying “like the lamb to the slaughter”

    • October 28, 2017 at 11:03

      The author is not “complaining”; he is shedding a light on the zombies, and it ain’t no sitcom!

  14. Realist
    October 28, 2017 at 04:17

    “Anything that can be said can be said clearly.”
    – Ludwig Wittgenstein

    Far too much strained and stilted verbiage in anything this guy writes.

    • socratizer
      October 28, 2017 at 17:13

      Yes, stilted is the right word. Poetry is a high and valuable artform; but so too is the capacity to speak and write clearly when communicating ideas is the primary goal.

  15. Kalen
    October 28, 2017 at 02:35

    We need poets to unwind liberal ethics, aesthetics and sensibilities of rampant individualism, worshipping of private property and acquiescing to human exploitation that in addition to terror makes monster of capitalism so broadly accepted or even allowed or tolerated as otherwise it has no purpose or place in human society.

  16. Virginia
    October 27, 2017 at 23:31

    I’m sure you all know who Richard Wolff is. If not, check out his ideas (akin to Bernie Sanders’). He’s for Democracy but with more fairness: http://www.truth-out.org/author/itemlist/user/44661

    • Bob Van Noy
      October 28, 2017 at 13:35

      Virginia I agree that an accurate view of Economics is a way forward and I would include both Michael Hudson and Ellen Brown in that category… i’ll provide links.


  17. fudmier
    October 27, 2017 at 23:08

    I am not against capitalism but it elevates and promotes the corrupt because capitalism rewards greed.

    Capitalism allows to use the awesome powers of the state or corporate entity not only to enslave and exploit the governed or employed populations to conform to the will and purpose of the leadership; but also to allow the leadership to redirect the output-produced by the governed populations to a private purpose that not only creates enemies of the type mentioned in the article but that can also benefit only those in charge.

    It is for this reason that state or corporate secrets and capitalism are incompatible.

  18. johnny
    October 27, 2017 at 21:21

    I am forever puzzled at the self-perception of “the left” as being against wars generally and American wars specifically. In truth, the left is war, and the left will die alongside America because of American wars.

    It is bizarre.

    • Abe LIncoln
      October 28, 2017 at 06:26

      Agreed. The Democratic Party is the American Left, and is no better than the GOP when it comes to creating illegal wars, regime changing, and the ‘rubbelizing’ of so many innocent countries.

      The American Left is extremely Pro War and Pro Police Surveillance. Instead of being “voiceless”, they control the channels of communication via the news media, Hollywood, Professional sports (NFL, NBA, Baseball), and print magazines. The violent so called “Anti Fa” is totalitarian and Communist who tout Mao and Stalin when you talk to them.

      The Left has destroyed America’s educational system too.

      Finally, Who supports the modern version of the Black Panthers (AKA Black Lives Matter)? The good ol USA has gone off the rails with the help of Obama and the Clinton crime families.

      • October 28, 2017 at 11:41

        johnny, Abe Lincoln… Your definition of what is “left” has been skewed by MSM. Right= establishment; left=anti- establishment. By this definition the Democrats are center-right at best. Embracing social issues and calling themselves progressive doesn’t make them progressive or left. It is designed to give their constituents the illusion that they are fighting for change when, in fact, they represent a faction of the status-quo. It is important to define terms when using labels, otherwise they become meaningless.

      • Kevin Talbot
        October 28, 2017 at 12:36

        There was a left when the Democrats all received money was Union money. Now that the Democrats betrayed the Unions and there are none to speak of, they get the donations from the same masters as the Republicans do. There is no distinction between them in the present, just their past. The Democrats are deceivers, they betrayed tgeir roots for the comfort of their few jobs at the DNC.

    • Anna
      October 28, 2017 at 08:44

      Israel and 52 Jewish (treasonous) organizations in the US want the US to fight against the sovereign Syria and Iran for the glory of the apartheid state of Israel: https://www.globalresearch.ca/israels-prime-minister-netanyahu-is-leading-us-president-trump-to-war-with-iran/5615249

      “2. Tel Aviv demanded a Zionist fanatic and backer of the illegal Jewish settler occupation of Palestinian lands, the bankruptcy lawyer David Friedman, be appointed US Ambassador to Israel. Trump complied, despite the ambassador’s overt conflict of interest.
      3. Israel launched waves of savage bombings against Syrian government troops and facilities engaged in a war against ISIS-mercenary terrorists. Israel, which had backed the terrorists in its ambition to break-up of the secular Syrian state, demanded US support. Trump complied, and sent more US arms to the anti-government terrorists.
      4. Israel denounced the 2015 Iran Nuclear Deal Framework and Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, signed by 6 major states and UN Security Council Members, (US, France, UK, Germany, China and Russia). A furious Netanyahu demanded that President Trump follow Tel Aviv and abrogate the multiparty agreement signed by his predecessor, Barack Obama. Trump complied and the US is at risk of openly violating its international agreement. … Trump rejects the evidence of countless experts among US allies and ‘his own generals’ while embracing the hysterical lies from Israel and the ‘52’. Who would have thought the ‘hard-nosed’ businessman Trump would be so ‘spiritual’ when it came to honoring and breaking treaties and agreements!
      5. Israel and the ‘52’ have demanded that Washington imprison and fine US citizens who have exercised their constitutional First Amendment Right of free speech by supporting the international boycott, divest and sanctions (BDS) campaign, which is designed to end the illegal Israeli occupation of Palestinian land and crimes against Palestinians. Trump complied. Americans may soon face over a decade in prison and complete economic ruin for supporting a peaceful economic boycott of Israeli settler products. This will represent an unprecedented violation of the US Constitution. At present, US public employees, like teachers in certain US states, are facing job loss for refusing to sign a ‘loyalty oath’ not to boycott products from Israel’s illegal settlements. Desperate American victims of the floods and natural disasters in Texas are being denied access to public US taxpayer relief funds unless they sign similar loyalty oaths in support of Israel.
      6. Israel demanded that the US appoint Zionist fanatic real estate attorney, Jason Greenblatt and real estate speculator, Jared Kushner as Middle East peace negotiators. Trump appointed South Carolina businesswoman Nikki Haley as US Ambassador to the United Nations. Israel pushed for Ms. Haley, the first US governor to criminalize support for the peaceful BDS movement.”

      The Israel-firsters have been funning the flames of war against Syria and Iran. Here is another idiotic opus of a piggish Frederick Kagan, the Israel-firster who wants the US limb & treasure to be dedicated to his apartheid dream of Eretz Israel: “…the American military can defeat them, can destroy every single ship and airplane the Russians have in the Middle East, and can decimate the Iranian military forces and proxies in Syria.” https://www.aei.org/publication/trump-faces-a-reckoning-with-syria/

  19. Joe Tedesky
    October 27, 2017 at 21:07

    Through the first part of Phil Rochstroh’s beautifully worded piece, it made me think that maybe that one lone time event in America where capitalism worked okay, was from the time when during the FDR years to where major regulations were imposed into law to regulate trading, and banking, and that these government regulations weren’t all that bad of an idea to leveling the playing field, by putting the bulk of the nation’s wealth into the middle class, as it was by 1954. There was a time where public service, as well as Labor Unions were surging to lift all the sinking boats while at the same time they were moving mountains by their building a super infrastructure along with their hard work making these laborers the world’s leading manufacturers of all kind of varieties of goods, as they harvested all sorts of agricultural commodities as well.

    (Just for the record possibly a new generation could replace the nature we ripped apart. If this should happen your grandfathers will get a reprieve by your efforts to fix the ecosystems that were destroyed.)

    I’ve always believed that there needed to be a balance between achieving a higher status in life juxtaposed with a heavy emphasis on providing the commons with a substantial welfare system to be shared by all. This ‘laissez-faire capitalism’ mixed with what Professor Sheldon Wolin called ‘inverted fascism’, is the extreme of the retro wealthy class pretending to be like King Louis XIV and Marie Antoinette with Heinrich Himmler in charge of the security and ground operations.

    About all those monsters out there I agree the world is a scary place, but with that we all need to stick as close by to each other as much as we can. Although when you drill down into it, we are all on our own in this life, but it’s still good to find friendship, and like minds. It’s just too darn bad that some have to have it all.

    • Dave P.
      October 27, 2017 at 22:26

      Real heartfelt comments Joe, as always. What is coming is not going to be pleasant. I watched this Today’s Jimmy Dore Show video on youtube under the title “Russian Hysteria leading to censorship of Progressives”. It is brief and very forceful. I thought I should share it.

      The link is – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5koSAbwNH4M

      Jimmy Dore is a Progressive Democrat Activist here in SouthernCalifornia with his own Political Comedy Show.

      • Joe Tedesky
        October 28, 2017 at 15:18

        Dave thanks for the link to Jim Dore. You know in a free press objectively orientated nation Jim Dore would have his own show on one of the many cable news media stations, but with that there go I.

        Dave what you and the rest of us are living through, are the reactions of an MSM who has loss it’s total control of itself. This last presidential election was full of surprises, and one of those surprises was the mighty MSM awaking to an alternative internet media, which quite frankly cleaned the MSM’s clock in this last election with the alternative’s vast internet audience. Oh the shame of it, and what to do about it, is what the Shadow Government/Deep State is now strapped with repairing.

        Like the pundit on the Dore show said, they can’t go back and recreate a ‘New Deal FDR’ type of society, because this FDR Plan has been the focal point of the mission that the Deep State has been trying so hard to destroy for these so many years. So censorship, and more outrageous propaganda, is the ticket…yeah, yeah, let’s just lie some more, it’s worked before when covering up Assassinations & False Flags, so let’s now just throw down the last remaining gauntlet and schmooze the public into their usual zombie like trance, and life will be good again. Of course the ‘good’ I reference isn’t meant to be enjoyed by the majority, as it is proprietary to the 1% only.

        Yeah Dave it’s beyond pathetic, why some would even say it’s criminal for what the Shadow Government does through their Deep State operatives, and with that the world trembles, or they just go about their business ignoring all of what goes on around them. Joe

        Note: I use the term Shadow Government & Deep State as explained by CIA whistleblower Kevin Shipp who has used these terms so specifically in his presentations to such.

    • Kevin Talbot
      October 28, 2017 at 11:59

      Joe… With the birth of the Rothchilds & Company, America, as a people, was not set up for exploitation, it was set up for extraction. The first owners were the native Americans and they were reduced to such irrelevance, they went into the woods and chanted themselves to death. Despair will do that to a human being. Then came our ancestors turn, and they were slaves, yes along with the extracted Black people of Africa were the hungry white slaves of Europe reclaiming the marshlands of Ohio and working the coal mines of Kentucky. Then in 1913, the Satanic powers (for brevity’s sake) came to America. They are those who control from above the world’s governments by “the power of the purse” and control, from below the masses through the revolutionary spirit of Bolshevism, sexual freedom, gender equality, same sex marriage, BLM and chaos in general. Once established in control of the money supply, they threatened those sixty families who benefit from America’s factory slaves and farmers, that should they fail to aid them in the establishment of the third seat of power in Jerusalem , after England and America, they will spread the revolutionary spirit among the hopeless workers made irrelevant by the Great Depression. The Owners of America displayed their immediate loyalty and joined the internationalist by allowing the Federal Reserve in to loan us back our own saving at interest. To further, increase their already exorbitant wealth they dragged America’s youth into two unnecessary wars, while we now wait for the third.
      After the Native Americans lost everything to our ancestores, now it is our turn to loose everything to the Money Changers. Through our willingness to submit to the constant self centered focus of Madison Avenue, and e-z credit instead of rising wages, we have become a nation of cartoonish posers who buy stuff we do not need, with money we do not have, to impress people we don’t give a damn about. We are slaves to our unbridled desires which always lead to all kinds of slavery, debt, drugs, sex and the worst of all self worship.
      It is time for us to stop blaming the other. It is time for us to define the Taliban within who destroy nations on the way to a Disney world rapture. It is time for us to read, with compassion for all, the real truth about our past, face the reality of our present so that we can together have a chance at a future. Remember folks, what is contra nature will be aborted by nature. Nature rules, for it is backed by Logos or Divine wisdom and as Hagel said: We will never beat Logos. That is meant as a assurance that evil will never triumph.
      The choices are simple. Do we want to live, within and without, in a melting pot or a boiling pot? That is the question. The solution is to eliminate the causes. It is the truth that nothing changes the good or the bad within a people until they change what is within themselves. God bless America, she needs it.

      • Joe Tedesky
        October 29, 2017 at 00:25

        Kevin I can see you don’t pull your punches, and I praise you for you perseverance to press on with your knowledge. While I don’t wish to diminish anyone’s want to gain their equal rights, I will agree that this subset you brought up of our population has been exploited to beyond what is decent and right, and only for them to be used to propel politicians who avoid confronting the real issues that nag us so much, as only to use these minority’s prejudiced situations to further the politicians own selfish political careers.

        Through out mankind’s history it is true that probably without a doubt it can be said, that the Native American indigenous to this land that white men named America, along with the Black African who were brought here in chains to enrich their white masters, is a crime of unconscionable hardships to befall such a lot of innocents of any land, or people. Only yet, we pity us poor white men for our being annoyed with these people’s request for clean water, or reasonable work opportunities. I often wish us white people would have learned more from the indigenous of this vast continent, and that the Black African would have at least been given that forty acres and the mule that they were so casually promised, but as you know Kevin neither was to be.

        I agree Kevin for a very long time the Rothschild & Company of money changers has profited from man’s many awful tragedies of war. It would have been but one thing if this group of money changers were to have funded but only one war, but one war is never enough for these merchants of death, and public debt is never too much to fulfill their greed lust for this is how the powerful bankers rule. Now the money changers have an indebted America broken to this nation being beyond repair, but yet these usurpers of finance still want more. This is pure greed, plain and simple, and their idea of complete is not enough to quench their thirst for more, more, and yet still more. The beast is never satisfied.

        I say we should throw the Federal Reserve and it’s big banking interest it serves to the dogs, and allow a National Bank owned by the American taxpayer to rise, and take command of our country’s financial business. I would also nationalize every corporation connected to, as well as the main corporations who flourish so well under the umbrella called the Military Industrial Complex, and use this as a way to forge a new peace worldwide, while paying down America’s disgraceful national debt.

        Kevin you probably have read this, and if you haven’t we’ll consider this link a small gift of appreciation for you sharing your thoughts and knowledge with me, as you so well did. Joe


      • Joe Tedesky
        October 29, 2017 at 01:24

        Kevin while my original comment is being moderated I will say this about the European White race in America. The oh so much smarter conquerors from Europe were so smart that they failed to learn anything from either Indigenous Americans or African Blacks. As far as that goes, any other culture with a different tone of skin, or some other noticeable trait, are ignored and prejudiced as well. Of course there is always something to steal from another society’s culture, but just remember Kevin at the heart of this early beginning of this marvelous European expedition are European Pirates, and I’m not talking Pittsburgh. These Pirates were only out for land ore & gold booty, as the exploration narrative was only an excuse to release the European religious orders to spread their terror of change. It worked for Charlemagne, so do in the land we call America. I can just hear them say it.

        I’m probably part of the problem being of European ancestry, but we are all here now. I find it interesting in this time of us humans facing so many cataclysmic events, with technology on the loose, and the environment being on our consciences that the Indigenous Americans, and the African Black came from such cultures as to somehow have a better respect of nature’s needs. I realize these Indigenous and Africans had whole cities, societies, and even empires of their own, but maybe I’m wrong that it seems they weren’t so in to making big things out of steel, or navigating the seas. In other words the Europeans were the barbarians who were going to ravish the earth. The earth for the Europeans was something to conquer and to use, where it at least appears that other cultures of the world had more respect for Mother Earth as they knew the importance to a long survival fot many generations of our kind was to pay attention to keep the earth clean. There again I probably got it all wrong, but it would be nice if for once everybody got a good deal.

        See my comment Kevin when it gets out of moderation. Joe

    • Gregory Herr
      October 28, 2017 at 21:18

      Just want to leave a note of appreciation for such a poignant comment Joe.

      • Joe Tedesky
        October 29, 2017 at 00:30

        You are welcome Gregory, but more importantly it’s good to see you appear on this comment board. Joe

  20. Lois Gagnon
    October 27, 2017 at 20:17

    Great to read Phil Rockstroh on CN. I have been a fan of his writing for a while.

    I so agree with his assertion that we should not demand final answers to life’s questions. I would include those who always demand solutions from those who articulate the myriad problems we face. The answers will come when we open ourselves up to the possibilities created by rejecting the mind numbing programming of the oligarchy. Just put enough cracks in the facade and the whole edifice will crumble.

  21. Alan
    October 27, 2017 at 18:24

    Thank you for this provocative piece! Beautifully written, unsettling familiar …

  22. October 27, 2017 at 17:20

    …an eloquent polemic that expounds upon the soulless state of a world consumed by self-absorption and greed.

  23. October 27, 2017 at 16:53

    What Mr. Rockstroh describes is what happens if people can’t think beyond what they’re told to believe. It’s up to each one of us to find our own internal spirit. Bob Dylan said it, “Don’t let other people get your kicks for you.”

    Capitalism will eventually be outdated and will have to flex, because Nature will not allow humans to continue as we’ve been doing since the Industrial Revolution. The changes will be forced.

    • Kevin Talbot
      October 28, 2017 at 10:36

      Jessica… it might be a good solution what you propose. However, help us out and tell us what is that spirit with us that you speak of. What is it and how did it get in us? Until mankind knows the answer to this question he will be caught between the love of opposites which will build him a permanant house in the hell of contradiction.

      • October 29, 2017 at 12:39

        Kevin Talbot, read Aristotle, Marcus Aurelius, Socrates,
        Kierkegaard, Spinoza, Deleuze, Derrida, etc. etc.

  24. Zachary Smith
    October 27, 2017 at 16:44

    Yet the questions must remain open-ended, for when you insist on a forced finality, you have arrested and killed the process; you have attempted to render the voluble soul of the world into a didactic corpse.

    Attempting to render the voluble soul of the world into a didactic corpse is probably not a good thing. It’s something I’ll try to avoid.

  25. E Wright
    October 27, 2017 at 16:30

    I liked the first part of this essay, then it seemed to get lost in a jungle of metaphors. I was hoping to be pointed towards solutions rather than introspection. Still, I very much appreciate the sentiment and the skill of the writer.

    • Paolo
      October 28, 2017 at 05:35

      Perfect comment.
      Without proposing solutions, it is mostly bar-stool chattering, and I don’t care much for wasting away on bar-stools

      • Solutions
        October 28, 2017 at 11:43

        I’ve seen many ask for solutions in previous articles and to unmask the rulers.

        Here’s the situation. Most world governments and people are in debt to usurers. These usurers are the biggest fraudsters the world has ever seen, creating central banks in most countries (House of Rothschild, Schift, Jacob et al) that serve to extract the wealth from the masses and create a system where they own everything through the creation of debt-based fiat currency.

        So you want solutions? Here they are:
        1. Becoming a self-sufficient landowner that can feed yourself and your family
        2. Stop using debt-based currency; become independent of it and don’t ever accept it, don’t recognize it
        3. Do not borrow or else you are giving the usurers the power to create more money which they can buy more with
        4. Fight land and income taxes to the bitter end – these are just tools used to extract your wealth and ensure you never become an independent land owner. If the government can just take your land if you can’t pay taxes, and the government is in debt to the banks, then guess who really owns your property at the end of the day?
        5. Be prepared to fight. This gang of international usurers has been attacking all nations and peoples independent of them for at least 100 years. A person they cannot exploit is their biggest enemy, because it takes away their power.

        Finally learn some real history. Read what the “bad guys” past and present had to say and draw your own conclusions. No one said making the change would be easy.

        Final thought on usury and the Abrahamic Faiths rules concerning it:
        Judaism – Cannot lend at interest to Jews but can lend at interest to non-Jews
        Christianity – Can lend at interest to foreigners
        Islam – Complete ban on lending at interest to anyone (the real reason Islam is vilified by the usurer’s media)

        Sources and Articles for your reading:
        National Economy and Banking System of the United States (presented before Congress in 1939)
        On Debt and Borrowing Upon Usury by Plutarch

        Quotes on Usury and Central Banking:

        “Happy the man who, removed from all cares of business, after the manner of his forefathers cultivates with his own team his paternal acres, freed from all thought of usury.”
        – Horace

        “The most hated sort, and with the greatest reason (of wealth-getting), is usury, which makes a gain out of money itself, and not from the natural object of it. For money was intended to be used in exchange, but not to increase at interest. And this term interest, which means the birth of money from money, is applied to the breeding of money because the offspring resembles the parent. Wherefore of an modes of getting wealth this is the most unnatural.
        Aristotle, Politics, 1.10, 1258b

        “I have two great enemies, the southern army in front of me and the financial institutions, in the rear. Of the two, the one in the rear is the greatest enemy.” – Abraham Lincoln.

        “If our nation can issue a dollar bond, it can issue a dollar bill. The element that makes the bond good, makes the bill good, also. The difference between the bond and the bill is the bond lets money brokers collect twice the amount of the bond and an additional 20%, whereas the currency pays nobody but those who contribute directly in some useful way. It is absurd to say that our country can issue $30 million in bonds and not $30 million in currency. Both are promises to pay, but one promise fattens the usurers and the other helps the people.”
        – Thomas Edison

        “The establishment of a central bank is 90% of communizing a nation.” – Vladimir Lenin (The US has had a permanent Central Bank since 1913 with the establishment of the Federal Reserve)

        “Usury once in control will wreck the nation.” – William Lyon Mackenzie King

        “The issue which has swept down the centuries and which will have to be fought sooner or later is the people versus the banks.” – Lord Acton

        “The money power preys on the nation in times of peace, and conspires against it in times of adversity. It is more despotic than monarchy, more insolent than autocracy, more selfish than bureaucracy. It denounces, as public enemies, all who question its methods or throw light upon its crimes.”
        – Abraham Lincoln

        “Whoever controls the volume of money in any country is absolute master of all industry and commerce.”
        – James A. Garfield

        “Let me issue and control a nation’s money and I care not who writes the laws.”
        – Mayer Amschel Rothschild

        “My agency in promoting the passage of the National Banking Act was the greatest mistake of my life. It has built up a monopoly which affects every interest in the country.”
        – Salmon P. Chase

        “The money power denounces, as public enemies, all who question its methods or throw light upon its crimes.”
        – William Jennings Bryan

        • Solutions
          October 28, 2017 at 11:49

          William Jennings Bryan frequently quoted Abraham Lincoln in his speeches, so it is very similar to what Lincoln said. For example, in the “Paralyzing Influence of Imperialism” Speech he delivered in 1900 against the US War on the Philippines he states:

          “Lincoln said that the safety of this nation was not in its fleets, its armies, its forts, but in the spirit which prizes liberty as the heritage of all men, in all lands, everywhere, and he warned his countrymen that they could not destroy this spirit without planting the seeds of despotism at their own doors.”

        • October 28, 2017 at 17:30

          Islam – Complete ban on lending at interest to anyone (the real reason Islam is vilified by the usurer’s media)

          I have used this argument many times. The Capitalists could not care less aabout beheadings, stoning to death, cutting off the hands of theives etc. The big sin of Sharia is that it forbids the collection of interest. That is why it is so demonized.

        • October 29, 2017 at 12:26

          BRAVO !!!!! SOLUTIONS!!!!!

        • TonyVodvarka
          October 29, 2017 at 13:12

          Two simple steps we can all take at once is to boycott the corporate media (also good for one’s mental health) and boycott the commercial banking system (join a credit union).

        • Maresedon'ts
          October 29, 2017 at 14:59

          Humanity is a social species. Organized groups of humans will always prevail over individuals. So becoming a self-sufficient homeowner who can feed their own family will not help. And there are too many people for that to be a realistic solution. I agree that the big bankers are a very nasty group whose power should be dramatically reduced. But they run organized groups of humans to do their nefarious work. I don’t see how we are going to stop them unless we create an organized group of humans that can exert enough power to actually stop them. This is a type of a war. Individual soldiers can’t win wars against armies. Organized armies win every time.

        • Peter Loeb
          October 31, 2017 at 06:59


          Everything costs money. Barack Obama had the ability to
          persuade Americans that they would get something for
          nothing. A few more crumbs were distributed. Everyone
          (of both parties) loves those crumbs and will fight to the
          death to preserve them etc. etc. etc.

          They are NOT “solutions”.

          Suggest to any lawgiver or pol that PROGRESSIVE TAXES
          are necessary. Sorry! No one is interested in taxes. Few to
          no Americans (of either party) are interested in taxes of
          any kind.

          It is the same in other nations.

          No American can be expected to comprehend the intricacies
          of taxes, tax avoidance and so forth.

          But taxes, PROGRESSIVE TAXES (the wealthier pay more)
          are the ONLY “solution. To health care as a right.To decent
          housing. And all those things that make up equality.

          To say that pols who shun this obvious “solution” are
          disingenuous is to be overly kind.

          They are backed up by all voters. More benefits but
          at no cost. (Healthcare is the most obvious example.)

          We in the US have collectively chosen to invest our
          money in defense. By the billions.

          —Peter Loeb, Bkoston, MA, USA

      • Realist
        October 28, 2017 at 15:32

        What bugs me is how his flamboyant style detracts from his content. It’s like he thinks how he says a thing is more important that what he has to say. Maybe that’s fine for poetry and fiction, but for expository writing?

        I think that was mike k’s point the other day. Spiro Agnew used to try to impress with fancy wordplay too and it got mostly laughs.

      • ranney
        October 28, 2017 at 16:07

        I’m with E Wright and Paolo. the poet does seem to be quite proud of his expanded vocabulary. I guess poetry is a personal thing and I find the tangle of metaphores and polysyllabic phrases tiring to wade through. But to each his own. I prefer Blake and Dylan.

      • October 29, 2017 at 12:15

        ablo, if you read it more carefully, you’ll see the solutions:
        Socialism in Venezuela & Back to Communism in Russia.
        Doesn’t that give you a hint about solutions???????

    • mike k
      October 28, 2017 at 14:49

      You think introspection is a useless fraud? Are you afraid of finding out that you are a fraud?

    • mike k
      October 28, 2017 at 15:05

      Perhaps your contempt for introspection is based on your truly profound and unerringly correct judgement in all things. But what if it is also based on a fear that introspection might reveal your self evaluation to be an empty fraud? I don’t really know – only you could answer that. Which reveals the unique value of introspection. “Beware lest the light in you be darkness.”

      • Xerxes
        October 29, 2017 at 11:43

        Reality, whose ever that may be, requires mindfulness, which only nature can supply.

      • October 29, 2017 at 12:34

        BRAVO !!!! MIKE K. !!!!! BRILLIANT !!!!!

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