Chris Hedges

“Sadism dominates the culture. It runs like an electric current through reality television and trash-talk programs, is at the core of pornography, and fuels the compliant, corporate collective. Corporatism is about crushing the capacity for moral choice and diminishing the individual to force him or her into an ostensibly harmonious collective. This hypermasculinity has its logical fruition in Abu Ghraib, the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and our lack of compassion for our homeless, our poor, the mentally ill, the unemployed, and the sick. …
 We accept the system handed to us and seek to find a comfortable place within it. We retreat into the narrow, confined ghettos created for us and shut our eyes to the deadly superstructure of the corporate state.” 
— Chris Hedges (Empire of Illusion: The End of Literacy and the Triumph of Spectacle)


 

“We now live in a nation where doctors destroy health, lawyers destroy justice, universities destroy knowledge, governments destroy freedom, the press destroys information, religion destroys morals, and our banks destroy the economy.” 
— Chris Hedges ( Days of Destruction, Days of Revolt)


“The violent subjugation of the Palestinians, Iraqis, and Afghans will only ensure that those who oppose us will increasingly speak to us in the language we speak to them—violence.” 
— Chris Hedges ( War is a Force That Gives Us Meaning)


 

“Ironically, the universities have trained hundreds of thousands of graduates for jobs that soon will not exist. They have trained people to maintain a structure that cannot be maintained. The elite as well as those equipped with narrow, specialized vocational skills, know only how to feed the beast until it dies. Once it is dead, they will be helpless. Don’t expect them to save us. They do not even know how to ask the questions, And when it all collapses, when our rotten financial system with its trillions in worthless assets implode and our imperial wars end in humiliation and defeat, the power elite will be exposed as being as helpless, and as self-deluded, as the rest of us.” 
— Chris Hedges (Empire of Illusion: The End of Literacy and the Triumph of Spectacle)


 

“The moral nihilism of celebrity culture is played out on reality television shows, most of which encourage a dark voyeurism into other people’s humiliation, pain, weakness, and betrayal.” 
— Chris Hedges (Empire of Illusion: The End of Literacy and the Triumph of Spectacle)


 

“This magical thinking, this idea that human and personal progress is somehow inevitable, leads to political passivity. … It has turned whole nations, such as the United States, into self-consuming machines of death.” 
— Chris Hedges (Death of the Liberal Class)


 

“The danger is not Islam or Christianity or any other religion. It is the human heart—the capacity we all have for evil. All human institutions with a lust for power give their utopian visions divine sanction.” 
— Chris Hedges (I Don’t Believe in Atheists)


 

“Where else, but from the industrialized world, did the suicide hijackers learn that the huge explosions and death above a city skyline are a peculiar and effective form of communication? They have mastered the language.”
— Chris Hedges (War Is a Force That Gives Us Meaning)


 

“The United States of Andrew Jackson or George Washington is not the United States of Frederick Douglass or Sitting Bull. But we present our history from the perspective of the winners, from those in power.” 
— Chris Hedges (I Don’t Believe in Atheists)


 

“The more we listen to the voices of others, voices unlike our own, the more we remain open to the transcendent forces that save us from idolatry. The more we listen to ourselves, the more we create God in our own image until God becomes a tawdry idol that looks and speaks like us. The power of the commandments is found not in the writings of theologians, although I read and admire some, but in the pathos of human life, including lives that are very unlike our own.
 All states and nations work to pervert religions into civic religions, ones where the goals of the state become the goals of the divine. This is increasingly true in the United States. But once we believe we understand the will of God and can act as agents of God we become dangerous, a menace to others and a menace to ourselves. We forget that we do not understand. We forget to listen.” 
— Chris Hedges (Losing Moses on the Freeway: The 10 Commandments in America)


 

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