Wednesday, 24 July 2013

Cultural Changes

Another excellent park concert this early evening by the Long Beach Municipal Band.  Which, under the 20th-year inspired and inspiring direction of its conductor, Larry Curtis, has, in my considered estimation, taken the standard of 'municipal band' musicianship and arrangements/selections to new heights.  And with the special vocal talents of a 22-year-old named Nicole Kubis (keep an eye out for the name), it was a night to remember.  And just gone a full moon at that.

Nicole sings with a band announced as the Glenn Miller Band.  What?  Can't be.  Wait.  The grandson of??  The arrangements of???  Whatever: You won't be disappointed, if Nicole is any fronting example of their talent.    

Which brings me to the main theme of this blog.  In a rather roundabout way.  But a well-worth one; I feel.       

In my blog The Game Plan (on Monday July 22) I touched on the subject of 'Cultural Hegemony'.  This is worth going into in further detail; in order for one to understand ALL of what is going on in our day.  And responsibility.

To begin with, let's consider Wikipedia's take on this subject.

from Wikipedia; under Cultural Hegemony:

"In Marxist philosophy, the term Cultural Hegemony describes the domination of a culturally diverse society by the ruling class, who manipulate the culture of the society — the beliefs, explanations, perceptions, values, and mores — so that their ruling-class Weltanschauung becomes the worldview that is imposed and accepted as the cultural norm; as the universally valid dominant ideology that justifies the social, political, and economic status quo as natural and inevitable, perpetual and beneficial for everyone, rather than as artificial social constructs that benefit only the ruling class.[1][2]

In philosophy and sociology, the term cultural hegemony communicates denotations and connotations derived from the Ancient Greek word hegemony (leadership and rule), the geopolitical method of indirect imperial dominance, with which the hegemon (leader state) rules sub-ordinate states, by the implied means of power, the threat of the threat of intervention, rather than by direct military force, that is, invasion, occupation, and annexation.[3]"
Gramsci’s intellectual influence
The German student leader Rudi Dutschke, of the 68er-Bewegung, said that changing the bourgeois West Germany required a long march through the society’s institutions, in order to identify and combat cultural hegemony.

In the event, cultural hegemony has philosophically influenced Eurocommunism, the social sciences, and the activist politics of socially liberal and progressive politicians. The analytic discourse of cultural hegemony is important to research and synthesis in anthropology, political science, sociology, and cultural studies; in education, cultural hegemony developed critical pedagogy, by which the root causes of political and social discontent can be identified, and so resolved.
In 1967, the German student movement leader Rudi Dutschke reformulated Antonio Gramsci’s philosophy of cultural hegemony with the phrase Der lange Marsch durch die Institutionen (The Long March through the Institutions), denoting the war of position, an allusion to the Long March (1934–35) of the Communist Chinese People's Liberation Army, by means of which, the working class would produce their own organic intellectuals and culture (dominant ideology) to replace those imposed by the bourgeoisie.[12][13][14][15][16]."
So: The bourgeoisie: Out.  The new liberated People: In.

What does this mean, in practice.

Item.  The Left's attempts to make the constitutionally protected rights to free speech and religion, and "the right of the people to keep and bear Arms", all subject to being 'relative' to legal restrictions by the federal government at 'best', and the several States' governments at 'worst'.  
     (Example: They want public schools not only to teach that homosexuality is 'normal', but to force it down the throats of the children.  As it were.  And if a parent objects, they are to be labled a 'homophobe,' or 'a hate speecher,' or some similar smear label, and their 'right to free speech' taken away from them, because it's relative.  Everything being relative, to the dictate of who's in charge.)*   

Item.  The "rapidly expanding and intensifying unconstitutional 'surveillance state' abuses against our Fourth Amendment privacy and property rights protections in Obama's Marxist Amerika" (as Alan Keyes has put it in a fundraising letter).  

Item (to go on with Alan's points): "(D)eepening deficit spending by Obama which perpetually burdens our children and grandchildren, eventually bankrupting our nation" - for a new form to take its place; already mapped out, conveniently enough. 

Item (continuing; with) "preborn children being ruthlessly slaughtered at abortion clinics subsidized with our tax dollars with Obama's rabid approval."

Item (there's more): "Obama's Marxist assault on the God-ordained institution of marriage between one man and one woman."

And the list could go on, of the Obama administration's Marxist assault on America's core values, and preparation for blowback; with over a million rounds of (very expensive; not target practice) ammo being provided for the DHS and other executive branch departments, and armored personnel carriers, and drones over America, and vehicle license plate recognition cameras all over the streets and overpasses of the nation, and cars that can be taken over and operated by remote control, and…and………. .. 

You get the picture, I'm sure.

The picture of drastic cultural change afoot.

Or not.  Depending on who you talk to.

This business about 'the People' needs to be clarified (before I let the subject go for now).  For there are at least two different ways of looking at the subject.

1)  There is the way of the American Constitution; whereby the rights of 'the People' - as individuals - are secured by the Constitution from The People being lorded over by the government.   The federal government, in that instance.  (The People need to have their rights secured for them in and by their own State governments/constitutions as well.)      

2) There is such as in The People's Republic of China, where The People's rights are handed to them by the state - and determined by the state.  This has two forms.  That process can be controlled by a) a central People's Party - as in Communist China; which supposedly represents the will of The People they are lording it over (oops; gave away my bias there).  Or by b) 'direct democracy' - what is also called  'participative democracy'.  Not 'representative democracy,' as in a republic, whereby The People elect representatives, who have time to study the issues, because that is their (momentarily, at least) assigned social job. 

 We have, in this country, a strong minority of people, rapidly assuming the numbers of a majority, who appear to want something akin to participative democracy - at least, doing away with the Constitution.  Which wet noodle, but occasionally followed wet noodle, keeps them from doing all the things they would like to do - which includes forcing others to go along with their preferred take on things - because the Constitution secures individual rights, under the rule of law; to say, under the Constitution.  

And so, e.g., if the Constitution blocks anyone but a 'natural born citizen' from becoming the president, why, just do away with the Constitution, and decide everything by majority vote of the members of the participative democracy.

And oh, who are those members??  Well; anybody whom the majority feels can be part of it…

You begin to see the problem here.

We are setting ourselves up for despotism, either from individuals - demagogues, put in place by the majority - or from the collective, deciding everything by direct/majority vote…

…and ignoring the rights of the individual in the process.   Who is seen as merely a pain in the caudal exterior, if he or she won't go along with the majority.    

We have been warned about this sort of thing.  By history.  By our Founding Fathers; who clearly knew the dangers of a democracy, and clearly decided, for the new nation, for it to be a republic - and a federal one at that.  Very clearly wanting there to be no centralizing of power; which could, then, all too easily be taken over by a despot.  Like another George III.  

Or like a Barack Obama.  Who could, in a very central role and  position, help see in a socialist agenda, and change of form, for the nation.  As outlined to some extent above.

A concluding thought, while on this subject, of forms of governance:

Any government - but the federal government in particular, since it is the biggest, and the furthest away from The People, so it is easier for those bureaucrats  (those supposed servants of The People) to forget their link to The People (that is, the people they are supposed to be serving) - has tremendous responsibility, and obligation, to spend The People's tax money wisely and well.  They have been entrusted with that money.  And they have not been doing a very good job of upholding that trust.  They have, rather, seemingly been arrogantly assuming it is their right to lord it over The People.

Well, I say: No more.  

I say: Enough.

And further; I say:

It's time for Change, all right.

But real Change this time. 

Not 'change' on the same level as the problem.

But moving humanity into a New Era, totally.

No; change that.

Not just a new Era.

But a New Age.

No; still a little 'weak'.

How about:

a new Dimension.


One that celebrates both the individual and the collective.  

And does so, without sacrificing the former to the latter.

Individuals.  Like Larry Curtis.  And Nicole Kubis.

And collectives, like the Long Beach Municipal Band.

Tilmeless stuff.  

Subjed to change in form a bit.

But not the underlying essence.

Which celebrates Life itself. 

In a loving way.

And which is the incentive for the change. 

Not Power Over people.

That is the way of the past.

Which we are now going to leave behind.

Some.  Of Us



who are ready for that change.



* See, e.g., Beverly Eakman's 'Cloning of the American Mind: Eradicating Morality Through Education'.
("Is there a furtive effort to alter the ethics of our children?  A behind-the-scenes, no-holds-barred look at our crumbling education system.  'Cloning' is a solution-oriented book that explains how psychological profiles (passed off as academic testing) are used to measure students' beliefs.  Courses are then implemented to correct their 'wrong' beliefs.  Thus essentially eradicating morality through education."

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