Our Burning World

by MISSY COMLEY BEATTIE

On Sunday, I awakened, went to my living room, and thought: This looks like a funeral parlor.

Exhausted by bedtime, I’d removed the heavy red drapes, wooden rods, all the hardware, and I used one-woman ingenuity?placing a small rug under one side of a piece of heavy furniture to push, push, push to another area in the apartment. I almost felt like I’d given birth.

Got up Monday, took the bed out of the second bedroom, rolled up the rug, dragged it to another place, moved furniture to get to the rug in the family room and put it in the second bedroom. (Bet you thought I was going to tell you I got up on Monday and undid Sunday’s work.) Then, I loaded the Lesbaru and took stuff to a donation center.

My plan: to change my home environment. I want to make my living space a place of serenity, a haven from the craziness and violence of the world.

This is not escapism, advocating incuriosity and bowing to what our government wants each of us to do. Access Google News and take a look at "Top Stories". Generally, these include the latest from American Idol, something about Justin Bieber or Lindsay Lohan, subjects we’ve been programmed incrementally to believe are important. What’s Bristol up to? Snookie?

Meanwhile, our world is burning.

Congress passed a bill Thursday to renew three provisions of the Patriot Act, continuing the erosion of our civil liberties under the guise of security.

Regardless of our protests, the corporate-owned mainstream media provide minimal coverage.

The wars wage on under the Nobel Peace Prize recipient who is using more drone power than George Bush and speaking similar platitudes about peace and the spread of democracy. The hypocrisy is stunning.

Again, regardless of our protests, our voices are unheard.

Bradley Manning remains imprisoned, informally charged with releasing documents with information that should scald the conscience. Among the revelations are the killing of civilians by U.S. forces, the truth of Guantanamo, the murder of journalists, and the nature of imperialism. For his bravery, Manning faces life in prison.

Benjamin Netanyahu, addressing Congress on Tuesday, used the term "painful compromises" multiples times. The Palestinians, though, have made the compromises in something ironically called The Peace Process. Injurious to our country, the Palestinians, and to Israel, Netanyahu’s goals are racist, yet Congress, orgasmic over this extremist, lined up like fans at a rock concert to show adulation, reaching out to touch him, his clothing. (Remember, power is the greatest aphrodisiac, according to war criminal Henry Kissinger, one who knows well its influence.)

The cooling system at Japan’s Fukushima Dai-ichi Nuclear Plant has failed. Radioactive water still may be leaking into the Pacific. Barack Obama has just stated that harmful radiation isn’t expected to reach the United States. Where’s the concern for the people of Japan? Surely, this is a catastrophe worse than Chernobyl. Further from Obama: "Nuclear power should remain a part of the U.S. energy matrix." Of course, the nuclear industry was/is a huge donor to the Barack Obama presidential campaign.

Again, our voices remain unacknowledged. Because the multinational corporations own our political system.

Recently, I spoke with a friend, someone who supported Obama and believed his message of hope and change. His disillusionment was palpable. His solution is to do what he can, individually and within his community, to be a positive force for peace and justice. I agree. And to accomplish this, I’ve started with the confines of my little environment, creating a place of tranquility where I can feel the balance needed to continue to work in opposition to war and a government descending to fascism.

Missy Beattie lives in Baltimore, Maryland. Reach her at missybeat@gmail.com.

 

 

Like What You’ve Read? Support CounterPunch
Weekend Edition
August 28-30, 2015
Andrew Levine
Viva Trump?
Jeffrey St. Clair
Long Time Coming, Long Time Gone
Mike Whitney
Looting Made Easy: the $2 Trillion Buyback Binge
Alan Nasser
The Myth of the Middle Class: Have Most Americans Always Been Poor?
Rob Urie
Wall Street and the Cycle of Crises
Ismael Hossein-Zadeh
Behind the Congressional Disagreements Over the Iran Nuclear Deal
Lawrence Ware – Marcus T. McCullough
I Won’t Say Amen: Three Black Christian Clichés That Must Go
Evan Jones
Zionism in Britain: a Neglected Chronicle
John Wight
Learning About the Migration Crisis From Ancient Rome
Andre Vltchek
Lebanon – What if it Fell?
Robert Fantina
Hillary Clinton, Palestine and the Long View
Randy Blazak
Donald Trump is the New Face of White Supremacy
Ben Burgis
Gore Vidal Was Right: What Best of Enemies Leaves Out
Suzanne Gordon
How Vets May Suffer From McCain’s Latest Captivity
Robert Sandels - Nelson P. Valdés
The Cuban Adjustment Act: the Other Immigration Mess
Uri Avnery
The Molten Three: Israel’s Aborted Strike on Iran
John Stanton
Israel’s JINSA Earns Return on Investment: 190 Americans Admirals and Generals Oppose Iran Deal
Bill Yousman
The Fire This Time: Ta-Nehisi Coates’s “Between the World and Me”
Michael Welton
The Conversable World: Finding a Compass in Post-9/11 Times
Brian Cloughley
Don’t be Black in America
Charles Pierson
How the US and the WTO Crushed India’s Subsidies for Solar Energy
Kent Paterson
In Search of the Great New Mexico Chile Pepper in a Post-NAFTA Era
Binoy Kampmark
Live Death on Air: The Killings at WDBJ
Gui Rochat
The Guise of American Democracy
Emma Scully
Vultures Over Puerto Rico: the Financial Implications of Dependency
Chuck Churchill
Is “White Skin Privilege” the Key to Understanding Racism?
Kathleen Wallace
The Id(iots) Emerge
Andrew Stewart
Zionist Hip-Hop: a Critical Look at Matisyahu
Gregg Shotwell
The Fate of the UAW: Study, Aim, Fire
Halyna Mokrushyna
Decentralization Reform in Ukraine
Scott Parkin
Katrina Plus Ten: Climate Justice in Action
Norman Pollack
World Capitalism, a Basket Case: A Layman’s View
Sarah Lazare
Listening to Iraq
John Laforge
NSP/Xcel Energy Falsified Welding Test Documents on Rad Waste Casks
Wendell G Bradley
Drilling for Wattenberg Oil is Not Profitable
Joy First
Wisconsin Walk for Peace and Justice: Nine Arrested at Volk Field
Mel Gurtov
China’s Insecurity
Mateo Pimentel
An Operator’s Guide to Trump’s Racism
Yves Engler
Harper Conservatives and Abuse of Power
Michael Dickinson
Police Guns of Brixton: Another Unarmed Black Shot by London Cops
Ron Jacobs
Daydream Sunset: a Playlist
Charles R. Larson
The Beginning of the Poppy Wars: Amitav Ghosh’s “Flood of Fire”
David Yearsley
A Rising Star Over a Dark Forest
August 27, 2015
Sam Husseini
Foreign Policy, Sanders-Style: Backing Saudi Intervention
Brad Evans – Henry A. Giroux
Self-Plagiarism and the Politics of Character Assassination: the Case of Zygmunt Bauman