Manufacturing Dissent Since 1996
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Uprising in tehran  keshavarz boulvard september 2022  2  cropped for itn

My take is that when it comes to establishing and trying to grow these kind of roots for democracy, I personally think it has to be rooted in resistance, originally. I think that democracy, in order for it to be meaningful and for it to thrive over time, it has to grow these kind of deep roots within the culture. And I think that when it comes to protest and resistance, these are ways of expressing these kind of desires. And for really constituting this sort of collective memory among the populace to say, you know, one: we're not going to forget these moments, these acts of brutality by the regime, we're going to make our voice heard, right? So that to me is a deeply democratic way of thinking and of beginning. I think that it's the sort of incipient and early moments of democracy.

We speak with political science scholar, Nojang Khatami who is a Postdoctoral Fellow at the Justitita Center for Advanced Studies at Goethe University Frankfurt. Beginning in the fall of 2023, he will be Assistant Professor of Political Science at Fordham University. Nojang is on to talk about his Boston Review article, “The Lifeblood of Iranian Democracy: From street demonstrations to song, dance, film, and poetry, women are advancing a long legacy of struggle against authoritarianism in Iran.”

 

 


Posted by Alexander Jerri
Dall e 2022 09 30 12.48.54   surreal painting  a whale with the head of a human accountant cradling a human baby with the head of a whale 3

The loudest, most obnoxious mass of Christians had come to the general agreement that, the more Jesus loved you, the wealthier and more powerful He would make you in this world. He did this to balance out all the Muslims, Confucians, and other heathens Satan in His nastiness rendered wealthy and powerful. The only explanation for the majority of wealthy, powerful people in the world not being Christian was that, even though Jesus could easily win against the Devil, sometimes He let the Devil win, by mistake or on purpose, just to keep everyone guessing. If the overall picture were simple to interpret, faith wouldn’t be the test it was known it to be. And so, even under the simplistic, dogmatic doctrines of Dominionist Evangelical Christianity, there was room for confused outcomes.

 

And thank God for that!

 

Tom Brokaw was a simple, millionaire news-whisperer and fly-fisherman who called the generation that profited most from the FDR public works program—in other words an entire generation of welfare leeches—the “Greatest Generation.” Once in late September of the year 2022 (by the old TV Guide calendar), he wrote an opinion piece for the New York Times. In it he bragged about his friendship with – no, not post-modern Homer, David Letterman – Yvon Chouinard, son of a Froggy Canook mechanic who reluctantly became an outdoor apparel tycoon.

 

Brokaw, in an attempt to show how low he was slumming it by hanging out with a fellow millionaire, kept calling the guy a “dirtbag,” which was apparently some slang term rock-climbing skiers liked to call each other, and had not much to do with bags of dirt at all. He also referred to Chouinard’s early life as a leisure sportsman rock climber and skier as “hardscrabble,” a term usually used to describe the lives of poor farmers. Rocks are indeed hard, and Chouinard probably found Scrabble a challenging game as a child, but that did not qualify his life as “hardscrabble.” It’s no surprise that Tom Brokaw, who coined the incorrect moniker “Greatest Generation,” should describe the life of an avid outdoorsman who became an apparel capitalist as “hardscrabble.” Tom Brokaw didn’t really know what words meant. A survey of his coverage of US foreign policy during his years as propaganda parrot confirms this.

 

Brokaw wrote his piece, entitled... read more

Posted by Alexander Jerri
Frog crucified 4

As the crow flies, so shall it stop flying and settle down in a tree to watch the Romans dig a mass grave. Only a few miles north, as the crow flies, of Cambridge, England. As the crow flies, so shall it caw, and eventually fall to Earth, its feathers carried off by ants to build their ant-bowers, its flesh fattening the Cambridge worms, its bones turned to tinker-toys for Iron Age toddlers out of which to build tiny bone-henges.

But let us leave the subject of that tragic Iron Age crow that didn’t survive the Roman occupation. Few did, and not just crows. In point of fact, not a single person, crow, worm, nor it matters not what animal species, living or dead, today survives from the Roman occupation of Britain. Yet a certain song survives. A song of frogs. So, that is something.

 

Let us also leave aside all those dead humans, crows, and other species, and observe the Romans digging. What are they digging, here in Iron Age Cambridge? Why are they not enjoying the sunrise with a bowl of Romantic porridge flavored with borage and sorrel? Because they have their orders. They have gone from hut to hut in hamlet after hamlet, interrogating the occupants. They threatened to rape the women, cut parts off the men, or break the bones of babies to get at the truth.

 

They needn’t have bothered with threats. The humble Iron Age Britons, most of whom would have admitted to still being in the Stone Age, and proud of it, readily gave up the “guests” they’d been harboring.

 

In total, about five hundred fugitive frogs were discovered and arrested that day. The frogs were frog marched out to the village square, to where a mass grave was dug in view of the roundhouse, and were, one by one, executed by dagger and thrown into the pit.

Astonishing: there really was a mass grave of frogs in this area dating from the Iron Age. It’s both SuperTrue® and regular true. Really. Look it up!

 

What’s SuperTrue® about it is, of course, the story behind the remains, the conspiracy behind the tangible evidence, the rumors and innuendo by which an overactive imagination can make sense of the random clues. For example, there’s the possible fact that there were rumors the Romans believed to be true, about a frog prophet, King of the Frogs, whose army of followers – and, yes, the collective noun for frogs is indeed “army” (again, look it up!) –... read more