Chris Hedges: Turning a Blind Eye to Catastrophic Truths

I don't know whether this is a possible good sign of Chris setting the stage for a real 9/11 coming out party, or proof that Hedges is playing a very skillful game of cherry picking reality.

"Yet we refuse, because we cannot think and no longer listen to those who do think, to see what is about to happen to us. We have created entertaining mechanisms to obscure and silence the harsh truths, from climate change to the collapse of globalization to our enslavement to corporate power, that will mean our self-destruction. If we can do nothing else we must, even as individuals, nurture the private dialogue and the solitude that make thought possible. It is better to be an outcast, a stranger in one's own country, than an outcast from one's self. It is better to see what is about to befall us and to resist than to retreat into the fantasies embraced by a nation of the blind".

"Human societies see what they want to see. They create national myths of identity out of a composite of historical events and fantasy. They ignore unpleasant facts that intrude on self-glorification. They trust naively in the notion of linear progress and in assured national dominance. This is what nationalism is about—lies. And if a culture loses its ability for thought and expression, if it effectively silences dissident voices, if it retreats into what Sigmund Freud called "screen memories," those reassuring mixtures of fact and fiction, it dies. It surrenders its internal mechanism for puncturing self-delusion. It makes war on beauty and truth. It abolishes the sacred. It turns education into vocational training. It leaves us blind. And this is what has occurred. We are lost at sea in a great tempest. We do not know where we are. We do not know where we are going. And we do not know what is about to happen to us".

The psychoanalyst John Steiner calls this phenomenon "turning a blind eye." He notes that often we have access to adequate knowledge but because it is unpleasant and disconcerting we choose unconsciously, and sometimes consciously, to ignore it. He uses the Oedipus story to make his point. He argued that Oedipus, Jocasta, Creon and the "blind" Tiresias grasped the truth, that Oedipus had killed his father and married his mother as prophesized, but they colluded to ignore it. We too, Steiner wrote, turn a blind eye to the dangers that confront us, despite the plethora of evidence that if we do not radically reconfigure our relationships to each other and the natural world, catastrophe is assured. Steiner describes a psychological truth that is deeply frightening".

Also Posted Elsewhere....

Since I have an ungrad degree in Psychology I would be remiss if I didn't point out the abject lack of profundity in this Psychoanalyst's epiphany that we turn a "blind eye" toward something. I am sorry to be negative but Psychologists just seem to have an inane knack for trying to elevate the mundane to Parnassian levels. While this may seem profound to the uninitiated it is quite tiresome to many that have looked into this stuff. Since we profess to be on a quest for truth here we should question all our paradigms, psychology is one of them. It is one thing to take the survey courses in the field and then make pronouncements in the form of squibs, dropping them like bread crumbs to leave a trail to some Valhalla of objectivity; it is yet another to truly understand the limitations of this field and this only comes with rigorous study both in and outside of school. Take a cue from Vladimir Nabokov: "Let the credulous and the vulgar continue to believe that all mental woes can be cured by a daily application of old Greek myths to their private parts. I really do not care.”

Noble Sentiments the abstract, but Chris Hedges doesn't seem to believe they apply to the "catastrophic truth" of 911, judging from his confrontation with Jon Gold. Is he straining the gnat from everyone else's eye but ignoring the beam in his own?

Yes rchandos

Yes rchandos, Noble drivel.

Speaking in abstract terms is, ironically, to engage in exactly what Hedges laments. It goes by many names: "the elephant in the room," "a national myth," "screen memories," "cognitive dissonance," "turning a blind eye."

State the fact, call out the injustice directly, and instantly others will feel empowered. The facts of 9/11 point to a series of controlled demolitions, for which there is overwhelming evidence.

Quote from the comments on

"Who has the balls to speak the Truth? Who wants to be in the vanguard, and risk falling in the first volley with the hope that those in back of you will continue the charge"?

This is the question I ask myself every single day.

Hedges and 9/11

Actually, I like Hedges a lot and find him an important voice for dissent. On 9/11, however, he's still silent as far as I know. He's smart and he's gutsy so I have to assume he hasn't yet looked seriously at the evidence. This isn't because he doesn't have it in his possession. Three of us got the chance to sit down and talk to him a month or so ago after one his talks (in Waterloo, Ontario). We told him about the Toronto Hearings on 9/11 and summarized our views, gave him the 5 hour DVD of the Hearings, and even included a note suggesting which talks he might start with if he didn't have time to watch the whole thing. He was polite and respectful and took the DVD. Has he watched it? I'm guessing he has not. But perhaps one day soon?

If anyone could get through to C Hedges it would be you.

I've praised your eloquence, intelligence, and demeanor many times.

When I approached C Hedges about 9/11 he got busy shuffling books around. I did flatter
him and gave him a DVD of one of Scott Nobels films in which his impassioned speech appears as the finale.
I then gave him one of the ae911truth videos.

He either does not want to know because of the quandary that comes with it.

Knows and remains silent by choice and constructs elaborate obfuscation to hide it as with this article.

Has been instructed to steer clear.

BTW, I've posted many articles by Hedges in the hope he would find US his ally.

On the smart and the gutsy

'He's smart and he's gutsy so I have to assume he hasn't yet looked seriously at the evidence.'

But surely you've noticed that there's no shortage of otherwise 'smart and gutsy' people who shy away from (or worse) the issue of 9/11 truth. And when such people '[haven't] yet looked seriously at the evidence,' I think it's likely that it is because they have chosen not to do so. In other words, that they are deliberately 'turning a blind eye.' That expression can refer to seeing the evidence and looking away; but it can also refer to not even looking at the evidence in the first place, for fear of what one might find.

The list is a long one--of people who have shown themselves to be 'smart and gusty' on one issue after another, yet for whom the issue of 9/11 continues to be THE stumbling block, the one on which their smarts and guts suddenly fail them.

I think one of the major disincentives is that, as they are already shunned by the corporate media, they see all of these other otherwise smart and gutsy people in the so-called alternative media avoiding the issue, and they don't want to find themselves shunned by them as well. They reflexively follow suit. They see the 9/11 truth movement being treated like pariahs, and they don't want to wind up like that--even though such considerations aren't supposed to matter to people with guts. (I certainly don't presume, as in the preceding comment, that it is because he or any of the others have received actual 'instructions' to steer clear).

(BTW, it was a pleasure meeting you when you were in NYC for the eighth anniversary back in '09, after you gave a presentation at St. Mark's Church. I recall one of the topics we spoke about was Chomsky and 9/11.)

I wrote this to Hedges in response to this essay

Hedges once agreed to let me interview hiim, but when I suggested email dialog he said he didn't have time.

Here is what I recently wrote to him. He didn't respond. Part is about nonviolence. Part is about 911.

Dear Chris,

I offer two challenges to your own hypocrisy. I don't mean to be nasty. You deserve all the love and respect I've always treated you with.

Americans who use nonviolent resistance are too cowardly to even discuss how Gandhi's approach can be more powerful than what is currently popular.

Protest actions where no one spends a night in jail are lame. Some people can emotionally handle prison time but not logistically. Others are the other way around.

I expect to make both the US Green Party arrest me this week in Baltimore and the Veterans for Peace arrest me next month in Miami. Gandhiji urged his admirers to serve time cheerfully and to be willing to die for the truth. Because you choose not to face this truth, I will hope my suffering will help inspire you to address this difficult challenge.

You are also remiss for using the excuse of your lack of hard science and engineering understanding as a reason to not address evidence that the destruction of the 3 towers on 9/11 is evidence of a false flag operation. Those who say you are insincere in your regular comment that al Queda is real are being unfair to you. You are sincere.

Because you have integrity you should welcome learning that Nafeez Ahmed goes into great depth explaining how the western intelligence agencies manipulate the jihadists. The Democrats refuse to address the revelations of gagged former FBI translator Sibel Edmonds. You are irresponsible if you don't.

Nevertheless, the laws of physics are closer to the truth than any political wisdom. Most importantly, the academic level of understanding required to address the destruction of the towers is only junior high level. It would not be that difficult for you to find friends competent to help you address that science.

If we could show Arab and Muslim people could be shown to not be the 9/11 culprits, Islamaphobia would be undercut. It is common for the most dedicated opponents of Islamaphobia in the US to dishonestly assert we can't get rid of Islamaphobia so we waste our time trying to mitigate it.

The encroachment on our civil liberties is largely based on general acceptance of the 911 official story.

Ask you buddy Cornel West whether I'm being fair in saying we had a good conversation. He hugged me and praised my revolutionary spirit.



Towards what end?

'I expect to make both the US Green Party arrest me this week in Baltimore and the Veterans for Peace arrest me next month in Miami.'

By what means and towards what end?

Glad you asked.

I am the only advocate of Gandhi's approach to resistance among those who regularly gets arrested for a higher cause in the US. This approach I define as plead guilty and suffer in jail to touch the heart of the adversary. Americans who do public arrest generally try to avoid or minimize serving time. Actions where 100 people get arrested and no one serves a night in jail are lame. Hedges (and I) take issue with black block types who hide their faces and destroy property. the difference between us is I can appreciate a 20 year feeling those with grey hair who get arrested and serve no time are unworthy of being seen as setting a sufficiently strong example.

I don't mind activists taking a relatively weak position NEARLY as much as refusing to discuss what is powerful about nonviolence. The folks I got arrested at in March last year at the White House and went to court with in October were adamant they would not discuss how Gandhi's approach to resistance differs from what is regularly practiced by other American resisters.

The primary characteristic of the American personality in this era is cowardice. It hasn't always been this way. Most of us are unworthy to shine our great-grandparents shoes. American's are proud of their ignorance. You see that so clearly with 9/11. Activists are supposed to be better. They are, but refusal of nonviolence practitioners to examine Gandhi is ABSURD. There are millions who agree with me on 9/11 but no one who gets arrested supports my Gandhi efforts

My approach to disrupting conferences of allies is summarized as maximum sacrifice, minimum disruption. When I got arrested 3 time in Valley forge because Jon and Betsy wouldn't even talk to me, I was never within eyesight of the speaker.

The Green party backed down and let me speak to 40 people for 2 minutes. They had originally allowed me to speak and then withdrew that. I leafletted explaining what I sought and what I was trying to say. Worked fine enough.

I've been denied the right to speak about Gandhi at 2 VOP national conferences in a row. Three people who convinced my co defendants in October not to talk with me used dishonesty, terribly below them. I'm currently trying to arrange a choreographed arrest where my disruption of VOP is minimal and I plead guilty

I recently discussed politics with a friend from college who is hostile to 9/11 truth. He surprised me by agreeing with something i"ve said for years, that the authorities understand nonviolence better than the protesters.

See my speech from 2007