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USA – The Imploded Dream

by Julian Rose

The dream world has some advantages over the every day waking world. One can go to places, do things and meet people with seeming ease. One might find one’s self in possession of large amounts of money; sailing on dream yachts; luxuriating in exotic palaces – or simply discovering strange unexplored regions and dimensions that defy third density logic.

But when this dream state is transferred into expectations of day to day life in the waking state, there is going to be a serious disconnect just down the line; and that ‘disconnect’ is the underlying signature of life in the USA.

It was in September 1970 that I had my first encounter with the United States of America. My plane was headed for Philadelphia from London. The man sitting on my left .. well I don’t remember too much about him actually, except that he was familiar with the USA from a ‘doing business’ perspective, and he spoke well of it: ‘the land of opportunity’.

For me it was a case of following the pull of my intuition; a broken engagement and an overwhelming sense of small island suffocation. ‘On the other side’ lay the promise of fresh air and a whole other world – including an unmet uncle in Wheeling, West Virginia, to act as a base from which to head out into the New World.

It was the hundred days for a hundred dollars Greyhound bus deal that really initiated me. Zig- zagging across the vast expanses of this old tribal land for one hundred days (and nights) with various and sundry stop-off’s in strange back-woodsy places with names like Terra Haute and Baton Rouge. I soon learned that the trick was to avoid sitting too near the back where a stinking toilet and drunk and impoverished travellers co-habitated in blissful ignorance of one another.

What I was witnessing it turned out, was the second class travel option for all those who had missed out on ‘The Dream”. Those who had fallen along the way or who just never tried to get there. I later discovered that many US citizens had never experienced this, the seamier side of life of their own Country. Instead, they had been born and raised in hermetically sealed environments with air conditioned bedrooms and garden lawns composed of designer grasses and heavily sanitized swimming pools.

The parental ideal was to get straight from the air conditioned garage into the air conditioned car to the air conditioned office – without ever getting a lung-full of the ‘non conditioned’ air of the great outdoors.

This phenomenon, repeated millions of times across the vast expanse of the USA, is the reason why the US manages to consume one third of the world’s processed energy – and for just one sixteenth of the world population. This in turn led to the creation of the disproportionally vast military; so as to hold the sword to any nation possessing the carbon and minerals necessary to continue to fuel this addiction, as well as to further fulfill covert hegemonic ambitions. Today, the US government boasts over 750 military bases spread between more than 60 Countries around the world, each exerting a direct influence on the political biases of those Countries.

Outside the hermetically sealed sanitized world of the domestic dream, for which all this power is required, citizens have come to believe that there is a certain danger lurking. Something to fear. Like some residual curse exercised upon the white invader by the brave and brutally outlawed tribal  trustees of yesteryear. A haunted feeling, which still lingers-on wherever something ‘wild’ might have survived the insipient sterilization and concretisation of this once gloriously rugged and river strewn land. A land over which the American Indian spirit still defiantly hovers to this day; a spirit  which cannot be exhumed, however desperate the attempts to overlay it with the Stars and Stripes – potent symbol of the arrogant march of hedonistic and reckless consumerism.

Were there any survivors of this government led and corporate sponsored American Dream?

Clearly the TV groomed smiling nuclear family, so carefully constructed for the mass consumption of the middle classes, was, in reality, awash with dysfunctional aberrations. The perfect picnic packed into the trunk of the shiny Oldsmobile was already saturated in pesticides, synthetic colours, preservatives and tenderising hormones. That seemed just fine until the unsullied belief in all things chemical was rudely interrupted by Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring, a book which revealed the devastation caused to insect and bird life by the mass spraying of  DDT. A synthetic pesticide that was supposed to remove any threat of a little ‘life’ surviving amongst the wildernesses so beloved of nature starved US citizens.

But this  revelation failed to quell the US appetite for ‘progress’. The ‘land of the free’ could not have any restrictions placed upon the mining of its once pristine resource base. The Dream did not include making a pact with nature or with any of those who opposed its Machiavellian onslaught which so crushingly swept aside all subtlety, compassion and dignity. Only money – and lots of it – could buy the working man an opening into The Dream and the chance to live-out the tantalising consumptive urban pleasures it had on offer.

As it turned out, the values of old Europe which the early settlers had fled because they seemed unduly restrictive, were simply stripped of their more culturally valuable attributes and honed down to the level of basic instincts. Cowboy style white male chauvinism was to become the mantle of  identity for those who followed the script. A script loudly selling an unshakeable belief in the self affirmed greatness of this ‘land of the free’ – whose hegemonic ambitions of world domination were disguised as ‘helping nations in trouble’ (providing they were in strategically important geographical locations). Such rhetoric, which included unashamedly promoting the goal of achieving ‘domination of space’ and more recently ‘the full spectrum dominance’ of just about everything else, became a glorified totem to be worshipped by all God fearing Americans.

Black African Americans meanwhile, were left to fend for themselves amongst the residues and crumbs of their oppressors extravagance and in a culture where racial supremacy was an all white affair. One to which the coloured races were expected to play second fiddle and act as useful servants. Yet, ironically, it was precisely here that I found the biggest hearts, the warmest handshakes and the truest smiles.
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The presumption of greatness which became compressed into the US psyche, was greatly aided by Edward Bearnaise’s mastery of the medium of advertising and the covert, as well as overt, media mind control that followed. To this day, even as the military industrial complex moves in for the kill, it is the mastery of the elite sponsored mind control that governs the daily reality and expectations of the majority of US citizens. A virus that has now spread across much of the world and brought with its own starkly out of place toxic totems: like Kentucky Fried Chicken, McDonald’s and Coca Cola.

Living up to the image of ‘who one thinks one is’ has long since surpassed retention of living by a simple recognition of one’s humble roots. By swearing allegiance to the flag, these roots are virtually severed in one stroke. Distorted roots lead to distorted egos and a preoccupation with narcissistic vanities. All these superficial concerns ultimately becoming something of a torture chamber for those unable to separate fact from fiction. For many, the chosen antidote for this painful condition became a determination to distract the burdened self with a daily dose of ‘speed’ and an obsession with doing five things at once. This way, many have deluded themselves into believing that they are ‘making progress’ simply by ‘keeping busy’.

Yet it’s curiously infectious this speed thing – and means that values, however important or profound, easily become purely ephemeral – arriving and departing like images on a Hollywood cinema screen. Never settling into that deep part of the being – the soul. The Dream usurped the space where the soul should be. A large number of US citizens, to this day, still hide themselves away in a soulless virtual reality world trying to remain ‘unaffected’ by the unsavoury goings on around them. This, even as the dark shadow of an imposed police state is everywhere visible and the ground is shaking under foot.

The hundredth day of my ‘hundred days for a hundred dollars’ landed me in Los Angeles. I hitched up Route 1 to  San Francisco; got a job as a waiter and lived with a small group of artistically inclined individuals on the edge of the Presidio Park. Here I had my mind and my eyes opened to the existence of another reality. The light just poured in and the burdensome British land owning cares and anticipations lifted off my young shoulders leaving me light and laughing.

America, in all its madness, had enabled me to confront the world afresh, see things in a new way. I returned to the UK with long hair and a spring in my step; and when my English uncle quietly tried to remind me that “England was the greatest Country in the World” I replied “No, The United States is.” That was forty two years ago. I too had been seduced by The American Dream.

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Julian is the author of ‘Changing Course for Life – Local Solutions to Global Problems’ www.changingcourseforlife.info and his forthcoming
book ‘In Defense of Life – A Radical Reworking of Green Wisdom’ will be published later this summer.

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ZenGardner.com

 

Julian is one of the pioneers of UK organic farming, commencing the conversion of his farm in 1975. He joined the Soil Association board in 1984 and campaigned vigorously for the widespread introduction of organic farming methods at a time when this system was not known. Julian achieved notoriety when he brought a cow up to London (Hyde Park Festival of Farming) and demonstrated vociferously against a government attempt to ban unpasteurised milk.Julian went on to develop his farm as a mixed organic enterprise selling all its main produce locally, while refusing to sell to supermarkets. He developed a theory of local production and consumption which he named “The Proximity Principle.” His advice has been sought by local authorites, development agencies and government.Julian has written and broadcast extensively and has just completed a book “Changing Course – For Life”, about the radical changes needed to bring new hope to society. He started his career in drama, but took-on the Hardwick Estate (and Baronetcy) on the premature death of his brother and father in the late 1960s. He is an environmental activist and a defender of peasant and family farming traditions throughout the world.

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14 COMMENTS

  1. Wow, Julian! What a great tale. Sometimes it takes a trap to open our eyes. ;-) As we watch the economy do its thing here in the US, the only stable things left are banks, fast food, and the military industrial complex. They have it all just as they desire. It is so hard to get people to open their eyes. So many people I know that work for the military industrial complex know that they are feeding the machine, but say that there is no other way to provide for their family. All I can do is show them that there are other ways in the best way that I can. Thanks for sharing your tale, Julian. Here is to more eyes opening before the ultimate trap snaps shut!

    • Yes Little Momma – this is an enormous dilemma. I have had the same experience with workers called upon to build a nuclear power station in Wales. They agreed that it was abhorrent – but needed the employment to feed their families. It makes one reflect on the absurdity of the 9 to 5 working day – which has been used relentlessly to drive creativity and inspiration underground – while pruducing endless coveyor belts of Earth destroying junk and amassing vast tax revenues for governments to spend on any stupid project that comes into their mindless minds.

      We ARE witnessing an unfolding of truth and at an accelerating speed – it can’t come fast enough as far as I’m concerned – and no doubt you too little momma (maybe even for hubby, sooner or later) – and for all who stroll in the Zensters burgeoning garden.

      • Oh, I cannot imagine being in that situation of helping to build a nuclear station. I have been in corporate retail for a bit, and managed a bar – that is as far as I got into feeding the machine. The hubby and I both work in restaurants and we find things even then that don’t sit well with us.
        Yes, TRUTH!!! Pour out from every crevice! Let us get this mass awakening rolling faster and faster! :-)
        Much love to you both! Yes, Zen – weird, but oh what a great weird to be! ;-)

  2. Though I never spent three months on the road at one time, I did bus it and drive it through much of the United States in the late sixties and seventies. In the eighties and nineties I was flying to my destinations or just crossing the border from Canada for lunch. I live just three miles from the border. The United States was a vibrant country with great people, the people are still there, the country as it was is not. Canada is not much better but we do not have as large a military or police, and our politicians all pay attention to what comes out of Washington DC and as such pay little attention to their own country. I have not crossed the border since the over reaction to the events on 11 September 2001.

  3. ” US manages to consume one third of the world’s processed energy – and for just one sixteenth of the world population. This in turn led to the creation of the disproportionally vast military; so as to hold the sword to any nation possessing the carbon and minerals necessary to continue to fuel this addiction, as well as to further fulfill covert hegemonic ambitions.”

    Julian, sounds provocative to preface consumer addictions w/ military build-up. However, believe the hegemony/ imperialism definitely came first. Just ask the native tribal members.

    • Interesting – – but essentially they are inseperable. Its all about war: war on nature = war on people = war as the weapon of repression of all animate life. The native tribal memebers were alse defeated by those seeking to steal the wealth of the land to fuel their already well established materialistic ambitions.

  4. Souless values–my soon to be ex-wife in 28 years of marriage had no explanation for why she could not move her hand 6 inches from the slop trash basket over to the recycle basket .And I mean silence.Even the marriage counselor couldn’t get anything out of her.All those years of scrapeing dried eggshells and oatmeal off her cereal boxes must have been the real value for her.I do know the label most Americans have for this behavior from a female.Seems rather common lately.

  5. I’ve lived in Baton Rouge for 51 years. It is a sump hole, now, compared to what it was growing up! The word tribe resonates with me. I love the indians!

  6. rich man’s war
    the poor, starving for food
    starving for land, starving for peace,
    starving for real.

    rich man’s war
    attacking human, attacking being
    attacking earth, attacking tomorrow

    rich man’s war
    thinking of always war
    thinking of always war.

    with machines for ancestors
    new unborn generations
    chemical umbilical chords are only wiring
    in your electrical progress
    human lives burnt offerings to the god greed
    with lies for ancestors

    there is no truth in some futures
    rulers of minds feeding next generation’s souls
    to the control machine.
    sacrifice ritual for the proper technology
    with isolation for ancestors

    there is only the present bought by the credit material uses
    forging chains binding you to destruction
    compliments of your deities
    the industrial priest …

    distant thunder distant cloud
    passions reign
    drenched in possession
    what we take is hard to do
    what we do is hard to take
    some ones are crazy or maybe we take turns
    dreaming about some kind of life we say
    “it could have been different”.
    but it wasn’t because we weren’t
    no matter what, it turns out the same
    a lot of things we said weren’t true
    industrial stories in an electric instant

    some things start good and go bad
    some things get bad and stay bad.
    are we caught in between living a lie or
    not living at all?
    eliminated choices lost in dreams we let go
    memories we never got to have
    something else to think about…
    waking up in industrial society
    surrounded by angry days,
    going through motions
    of not being.
    wanting the best but not expecting it.
    surviving paid for in dreams
    feeling like a world alone
    serving god with the devil to pay.
    feeling like something in no place
    what goes on in hell anyway?
    .
    thing is, it has to do with heart.
    we have to understand what hearts are for
    before we can get back to heaven or paradise
    or the power in OUR MIND.

    from Rich Man’s War by John Trudell, Native American word performance artist and former spokesperson for the American Indian Movement

  7. Right on Julian with the “Edward Bearnaise” The mind fuck that bastard pulled off on the public . Not suree if you ever looked into Ana Freud . Most dont realize how deadly she was and her now used undertones to SS|R drugs along with bata blockers being pumped out like fucking tic tac’s .. Its all ties back in one Loop with Sigmund Hi on cocaine driving train , dont you know you better watch speed .

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