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[Xmca-l] Re: fact and fake

​One thing on my list of actions is to remind people of the mid-1930's in
the world, and in the US in particular.

In reminding myself​ of that time I have found it interesting to take up
Sinclair Lewis's 1935 book, *It can't happen here.*

Perhaps not the best of Lewis's writing, but he was in a hurry. The message
seemed urgent. I find it interesting bed time reading.

You can get the idea from the wikipedia entry:

And cheap copies abound.

Mike -

PS - Off later to an event where a congressman is going to be too busy to
be at his own town meeting. Working on a sign. "No representation without

On Tue, Feb 21, 2017 at 8:26 AM, Peg Griffin <Peg.Griffin@att.net> wrote:

> Just on record, David, a rejection of your parenthetical: "(People who
> actually live here should correct me if I am wrong.)"
> You are wrong but correcting you is far down on the list of "should"
> actions, so far down that simply saying it is sufficient.
> Peg
> -----Original Message-----
> From: xmca-l-bounces@mailman.ucsd.edu [mailto:xmca-l-bounces@
> mailman.ucsd.edu] On Behalf Of David Kellogg
> Sent: Tuesday, February 21, 2017 9:31 AM
> To: eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity
> Subject: [Xmca-l] Re: fact and fake
> Andy and Alfredo:
> I'm in the USA right now, my first visit in three years. I don't want to
> understate the depth of the ideological changes: there has clearly been a
> remarkable coarsening and vulgarization of the national discussion, and
> there is undoubtedly a normalization of racism well underway. But when we
> speak of the new regime as a significant source of material, real suffering
> for working people, I can't think of any assault on the livelihood of
> workers that wasn't first pioneered by the "pragmatic progressives" of the
> previous administration. In other words, at least so far, the changes seem
> more at the level of faith, and the facts point to continuity. (People who
> actually live here should correct me if I am wrong.)
> Take for example the two issues Andy raises. First of all, "Last Night in
> Sweden" appears to simply be another instance of the president's watching
> late night television and confusing a report on crime in Sweden with an
> actual terror attack occurring in real time. When you look at the
> transcript of what he says, it is quite possible that the confusion is not
> in his mind but only in his language: he actually MEANT to say "if you look
> at the what WAS happening in the report I watched last night in Sweden" and
> the syntax was too much for him. This is the kind of poor language that
> happens all the time in everyday discourse, including that of the head of
> state; it's just that thanks to a combination of poor impulse control and
> new technology, we now get all this confused and confusing language in an
> unedited form. This is a semiotic change indeed, but it's not a material
> one in the sense that nobody has yet died over it, either in Sweden or in
> the USA.
> Secondly, Obamacare seem to be as far as ever from being repealed; there
> is a basic contradiction between the ideological commitment of the
> government to ensuring the speedy death of those who cannot afford
> treatment and stability in the insurance markets. The latter is still very
> much predominant, just as it predominated over the (weak) ideological
> commitment of the previous regime to expanding health care to include
> everyone. What the current head of state actually SAYS about health care
> has, at times, gone well beyond that weak commitment: "GREAT healthcare for
> For a while, Republicans in the Senate were trying to interpret that
> statement as "potential access" to everybody who can pay for it, but this
> was dropped when the insurance markets responded negatively.
> I think that this basic factual continuity combined with constant breaches
> of faith is the source of the tension and excitement that Alfredo mentions.
> The previous regime liked to speak of being workmanlike and practical,
> with an emphasis on getting things done, and if anything the regime was
> actually rather proud of its inability to communicate the wonky facts of
> their supposed accomplishments to working people. The argument was that
> good policy would eventually make for good politics, and if it didn't, then
> it was better to have the former than the latter. But the argument for
> human equality is an argument of good faith, except in the trivial sense
> that we all have more or less the same physiological hardware: the argument
> for human equality must now be made on emotional grounds and not in the
> language of "facts".
> Precisely because the Obama regime was, at bottom, so right wing,
> opposition to Obama was increasingly focused on the "fact" of his race
> alone. And precisely because the current regime is so outspokenly white and
> at the same time so amateurish, incompetent and utterly incoherent, it is
> able to convey the bankruptcy of white supremacy to white people in direct,
> emotionally accessible ways that were impossible for Obama. This is not
> progress towards a de facto equality, but it seems to me to be the
> harbinger of a giant leap of faith.
> No matter lies, and all lies matter.
> David Kellogg
> Macquarie University
> rea
> On Tue, Feb 21, 2017 at 12:16 PM, Alfredo Jornet Gil <a.j.gil@iped.uio.no>
> wrote:
> > Totally relevant, Andy. As you say, it's so interesting to follow how
> > issues of faith and truth will be unfolding and changing in all
> > sectors of society. This has been going on for quite long time, I
> > think, not only about Trump but more generally with regard to
> > socioscientific issues such as climate change. But, perhaps
> > fortunately, it seems this is turning into crisis (and hence change),
> > with those same features becoming more exacerbated. It's scary and
> exciting at the same time.
> >
> > I've been (as many of you) following the multiple testimonies and
> > analyses that are emerging in the media, intended and unintended, lots
> > of working-over in the form of analysis. It's amazing how much
> > material for analysis and how many actual analyses are being produced.
> > Is as if as history was shaking, so too was consciousness shaking,
> > producing more and more.
> >
> > Alfredo
> > ________________________________________
> > From: xmca-l-bounces@mailman.ucsd.edu
> > <xmca-l-bounces@mailman.ucsd.edu> on behalf of Andy Blunden
> > <ablunden@mira.net>
> > Sent: 21 February 2017 02:43
> > To: eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity
> > Subject: [Xmca-l]  fact and fake
> >
> > The Washington Post has a series of interviews with people attending
> > Trump's rally where they were the first to learn of the Swedish
> > terrorist attack in Trump's imagination, planted there by FOX News.
> > The faith of these Trump loyalists seems unshakeable, though the
> > resignation of Flynn was causing a little difficulty, but I wouldn't
> > put it more strongly. It was still the fault of the "mainstream
> > media".
> >
> > Is there no point beyond which Trump can step where fact and fake can
> > be distinguished from trust and favour? In the discussion we had
> > around his Inauguration Day speech I suggested it would be people
> > getting ill and discovering that they had lost the coverage they had
> > under ObamaCare.
> >
> > I would be interested in hearing early anecdotes of people who are
> > Trumpistas up till now but who change their mind and what it is which
> > does the trick. It seems almost like we have to discover a hole in
> > political space-time to escape this black hole!
> >
> > Andy
> >
> >
> > --
> > ------------------------------------------------------------
> > Andy Blunden
> > http://home.mira.net/~andy
> > http://www.brill.com/products/book/origins-collective-decision-making
> >