American Identity

Question: Who are we?

Robert Thurman: In my “End of Revolution” book yeah I still think that, definitely, but we had just subverted, we were – we were under the control of war mongerers at the moment, of war criminals, actually.  They are controlling us and taking all the money, and taking all the energy and have – they’ve controlled the media, propaganda vehicles and so on, they have turned it into basically.  And, so what - what’s there kind of desperate though, because the thing had, but they are not getting anywhere, and the people are getting more and more sick of it and, and the people have been, were fooled into it and frightened into it in various ways, but I think that’s kind of, it’s like it’s the darkness before the dawn, they – I think the people will really refuse at some point, at this rate, you know, because they – the Cold War, they were kind of happy in the Cold War these criminal people, because they had a big enemy that they could promote, that they were afraid of.  They were very unhappy at the end of World War II because we won, so therefore there was no need – always in American History before that, as Gore Vidal brilliantly says, we always demobilize, but in ’47, Truman and others decided that they would create this enemy in the Russians, our former great allies, who helped us beat the Germans actually in the – well it was really the Russians who were a major factor, and they were our major allies, and so we turned them into the Devil, and threatened them with our nuclear weapons, which them caused them to like build up nuclear, then we could have an arms race with them, then make them an enemy, then have all these proxy wars, and the happy days for the military of forty years of Cold War.  Then finally it stopped and they didn’t know what to do, you know, Bush I, no more Cold War, no more things, even Bush I had the temerity, the old warrior CIA guy that he is, to say we might have a “peace dividend”, and he’s talking there to all the poor people in America, all the people with no decent roads and schools and train systems and all the horribly deteriorated info structure that the US now is a victim of like a fourth world country.  And, but no, there’s no peace dividend because the old Secretary of Defense, you know, Darth Cheney, writes up a big program for world conquest, and so everybody’s our enemy suddenly then, so it’s even better, we’ve only had the Russians, or now suddenly everybody’s our enemy.  And they’ve got to find some people to okay, we’ll attack Iraq, we’ll attack, so, here and there, we’ll conquer from Iraq to, central Russia, you know, get all the oil, you know.  The ridiculous thing he wrote in 1991 which they’ve been doing now in 2000 with the poor – the poor son who’s just a party animal who just, who wants to sniff coke and have fun, and they just put him up there, and he’s like, going like this, and they don’t – he doesn’t know what he’s doing?  And he’s leading the charge of these complete World War II lunatics, who are criminals really, basically, themselves they are war criminals.

Recorded on: 6/1/07

Thurman talks about how the United States was once the closest country in history to achieve certain Buddhist ideals, but that it has been subverted.

LinkedIn meets Tinder in this mindful networking app

Swipe right to make the connections that could change your career.

Getty Images
Sponsored
Swipe right. Match. Meet over coffee or set up a call.

No, we aren't talking about Tinder. Introducing Shapr, a free app that helps people with synergistic professional goals and skill sets easily meet and collaborate.

Keep reading Show less

4 reasons Martin Luther King, Jr. fought for universal basic income

In his final years, Martin Luther King, Jr. become increasingly focused on the problem of poverty in America.

(Photo by J. Wilds/Keystone/Getty Images)
Politics & Current Affairs
  • Despite being widely known for his leadership role in the American civil rights movement, Martin Luther King, Jr. also played a central role in organizing the Poor People's Campaign of 1968.
  • The campaign was one of the first to demand a guaranteed income for all poor families in America.
  • Today, the idea of a universal basic income is increasingly popular, and King's arguments in support of the policy still make a good case some 50 years later.
Keep reading Show less

A world map of Virgin Mary apparitions

She met mere mortals with and without the Vatican's approval.

Strange Maps
  • For centuries, the Virgin Mary has appeared to the faithful, requesting devotion and promising comfort.
  • These maps show the geography of Marian apparitions – the handful approved by the Vatican, and many others.
  • Historically, Europe is where most apparitions have been reported, but the U.S. is pretty fertile ground too.
Keep reading Show less

Why I wear my life on my skin

For Damien Echols, tattoos are part of his existential armor.

Videos
  • In prison Damien Echols was known by his number SK931, not his name, and had his hair sheared off. Stripped of his identity, the only thing he had left was his skin.
  • This is why he began tattooing things that are meaningful to him — to carry a "suit of armor" made up the images of the people and objects that have significance to him, from his friends to talismans.
  • Echols believes that all places are imbued with divinity: "If you interact with New York City as if there's an intelligence behind... then it will behave towards you the same way."
Keep reading Show less