By Larry Romanoff, October 16, 2022
Americans don’t believe China should adopt US-style multi-party politics because it’s a good system, or even because they believe it’s a good system. Most Americans aren’t sufficiently educated to know if a system is good or bad. Instead, they are deluded that their entire belief system and set of values is held in their minds as the world’s default position, representing the natural order of the universe. And they presume to measure the world according to this political religion.
One American wrote: “I’m really tired of hearing about democracy. Time and again, people are saying, maybe the Western style isn’t right for this country, or maybe the country isn’t ready for democracy. Well, when, pray tell, is a country finally ready for democracy?” We can’t help but pity this pathetic fool. You can feel his frustration. To him, it is self-evident that American-style multi-party politics is the natural human condition, the inexorable result of human evolution, and it is beyond the limits of his shrunken intellect to imagine that the correct answer to his question is “Well, maybe never.” Here’s another American, this one with a kind heart. He is tolerant and counsels patience. I like this guy. “We need to recognize that our ideology is not for everybody. The Chinese are still evolving upward, and without an educated society, US-style democracy will not work.” Now we know. The Chinese cannot adopt democracy because they are still primitive, having only just taken their first baby steps from apehood to Americanism. Those who reject our system do not do so because it’s unsuitable, dysfunctional and corrupt, but because they aren’t sufficiently educated.
If we blow away the smoke, it is self-evident that there are no absolutes in systems of government. A monarchy could be a perfectly acceptable system; there is nothing inherently wrong in having a king. Granted, it’s better if that king is wise, benevolent and responsible because if he is evil, corrupt and interested only in waging war on borrowed money, then the country would be shit. But then this is the main reason the US is shit today – because it’s government and leaders are evil, corrupt, and interested only in waging war on borrowed money. Whether in government or commerce, the critical feature is the character of the leaders.
Other forms of government or social organisation, the theories of socialism, were never presented to the American public in impartial or even in intelligent terms. There were no discussions of relative strengths or weaknesses or comparative records of accomplishments, nor were these permissible. The perspective offered was exceedingly narrow and any shade of socialism was presented with images of excessive government control, dictatorships and a form of evil. Any part of the world not firmly in the US camp or under American control was displayed to American children and adults in terms of socialist subversion, brutality and desire for world domination.
Virtually the entire socio-political landscape consisted of politicised rhetoric created by the US media in concert with the government. In contrast to idyllic images of the average American family with their 2.4 children living in their house with the little white picket fence and a yard with green grass, books and TV programs depicted the world outside the US as consisting of “wretched and terrifying places, with photos of malnourished children and bombed-out cities“. Other nations were savage and brutal, their citizens living hopeless grey lives in a hopeless grey world, portrayed as godless and deceitful, evil drones inciting unrest and revolution. There was never a presentation or fair discussion of issues; the intent was never to educate or inform, but to indoctrinate, media and publishing content all pulled from the same political-religious agenda. TV programs and history books read more like jingoistic sermons than facts of history or current affairs: “From island to island, continent to continent, the children of free peoples move the forces of tyranny from the face of the earth”. American religions were riding this wagon with as much eagerness as was the government, the people being taught that anti-communism or anti-socialism was an alliance with God himself, and that America was destined to be the savior of the world by divine appointment.
Former US Senator William Fulbright wrote that Americans not only misinterpreted their power as virtue, but further misinterpreted the imaginary virtue as a sign of God’s favor, giving America the unique responsibility to make the world wiser, happier and richer. In other words, remaking everyone as Americans. Former US Secretary of State Colin Powell said the US was “a country that exists by the grace of a divine providence“. Herman Melville wrote, “We Americans are the chosen people, and God has predestined – and mankind expects – great things from our race.” It was impossible for young children, and indeed for entire generations of uninformed and simple-minded Americans, to develop a realistic and healthy world view under the onslaught of this incessant propaganda war. While contrary political philosophies were summarily banished as godless, brutal and warlike, the American experience was portrayed in terms of altruism, humanity, morality and rule of law. American children were taught their government’s repeated military travesties were divinely inspired, America riding to the rescue like the cowboys in the Western movies, so when the US military went out on yet another war of liberation to kill yet another 3 million civilians, the citizenry acquiesced, strengthened by their faith in their own virtue.
History, of course, was one of the casualties of this generations-long domestic propaganda war, since the Americans freely excised the often-barbaric unpleasantness of their actions and reduced historic events to simplistic sound-bytes, caricatures of real events, creating countless popular myths to captivate their domestic audience and shield Americans forever from the truth of their own existence.
Christopher Columbus is today venerated throughout the US with a Columbus Day holiday and even Washington’s ‘District of Columbia’ is named after him. To support their narrative, the Americans created the myth of Queen Isabella of Spain pawning her crown jewels to finance his voyages of exploration, but none of that is true. Columbus, whose real name was Cristobol Colon, was a Jewish slave trader financed by wealthy Jewish businessmen, whose discovery of the new world set in motion a program of genocide that covered all the Americas, exterminating countless millions of people including the entire Maya, Inca and Aztec civilisations, as well as the Carib Indians and 98% of American aboriginal peoples. To celebrate a national holiday in his name is an unparalleled obscenity, but not for the Americans. To them, Columbus created “freedom”.
American presidents as a class constitute some of the most shameless myths of US history, always presented in glowing terms of wisdom, humanity and greatness when they were mostly racist genocidal thugs. It was the great George Washington who instructed his troops to skin the bodies of natives “from the hips downward to make boot tops or leggings”, and Theodore Roosevelt, the Nobel Peace Prize winner, was worse, telling Americans that the lives of aboriginal natives were “as meaningless, squalid, and ferocious as the wild beasts”, and that America’s extermination of them and the theft of their land “was ultimately beneficial as it was inevitable”.
Davy Crockett, an American frontiersman beloved by generations of small boys, was built into the epitome of a moral role model for emulation, the kids being taught he died fighting “an enemy of freedom” at the Alamo. The hell he did. Crockett was little more than a murderous goon expanding the American empire, and died trying to kill thousands of Mexicans, just as he had previously done with the natives. There were many of these so-called American heroes, mostly created from the corpses of resurrected non-descript gangsters and infused with a sudden excess of Christian morality, becoming part Christian soldier and part typical American.
In order to ease the penetration of the mythical narrative into the fertile and innocent little minds of the people, America invented jingoism, the fervent if pathologically false conviction that you, your nation, your systems, values and beliefs are vastly superior to all others. US President Calvin Coolidge told his people “To live under the American Constitution is the greatest political privilege that was ever accorded to the human race”. American Journalist Michael Hirsh wrote that American global domination was “the greatest gift the world has received in many, many centuries, possibly all of recorded history.” Ann Coulter, an extreme Right-Wing US columnist, called US soldier Pat Tillman (whom you will meet elsewhere in this Series) “an American original: virtuous, pure and masculine like only an American male can be”. Most people want to throw up after reading much of this stuff, but to Americans this is reality.
When a society substitutes political fairy-tales and myths, nationalistic slogans and religious rhetoric for historical fact, it distorts much of the historical reality of a people and a nation, and that is the truth of America today. We have generations of people who have adopted a vast library of false imagery and political-religious myths as a substitute for factual knowledge of their nation. Hollywood has been one of the worst sinners. Movies have served as one of the most effective and widespread disseminators of political propaganda and misinformation, leading generations of Americans to believe the fictitious caricatures. American movies and TV programs do not reflect reality, and any with historical references do not mirror history.
It is commonly known that the reason countless American war movies are so realistic and well-done is due to the free availability to Hollywood of the entire US military apparatus, at often astonishing expense to the military. Hours of scenes shot on aircraft carriers at sea, with dozens of take-offs and landings, are not cheap, but the only cost to a movie producer is the surrender of the script to the military censors who sacrifice historical accuracy by converting portions of the nation’s history into political-religious morality fables. Movie-goers are misled into believing they are watching a documentary film, the producers assuring their public of a faithful representation of reality where “only the names have been changed”, but this has always been nonsense. Perhaps other nations do this, but the Americans perfected the process to the point where historical movies bear virtually no relation to real events and are essentially false propaganda films. Among many prominent myths is that the US saved the world by single-handedly winning the war in Europe whereas the truth is that most of the burden was borne by Russia and the US entry was notable primarily for its looting of the carcass.
Another myth heavily propagated by America’s establishment is that the US is “the world’s Arsenal for Democracy” and has been paying for the defense of Europe (and Canada) since the Second War, evidenced by the maintenance of US military bases everywhere. Of course, the US has never paid for the defense of anybody because neither Europe nor Canada have ever been in the slightest danger of attack from anyone other than the US itself. The proliferation of American military bases was forced onto Europe to ensure US domination and never in any sense to defend anyone. Americans firmly believe the propaganda that US bases in places like Taiwan, South Korea and Okinawa are to protect local people rather than to enforce American control. This immense ignorance persists because the American propaganda machine provides only myths and sound bytes; It never gives facts, information or detail.
When movies and television embed religious nationalism and political rhetoric in their offerings for the masses, the entire population becomes misinformed (as intended), and both historical and current reality are twisted and distorted. As one author emphasised, we expect politicians or religious figures to present their personal values and positions, but when this political-religious ideology with all its attendant values is buried in entertainment, viewers seldom recognise the propaganda and tend to believe its accuracy. They also tend to unconsciously adopt the moral principles being preached. For decades, this is one major way the American mind was molded, and the process continues in even more elaborate form to this day, as with the recent foolish movie-myth about the killing of Osama bin Laden, and the many entertaining but historically false tales of Pearl Harbor and the Vietnam war.
Another recent example is Steven Spielberg’s unforgivably distorted portrayal of Lincoln and slavery and the American civil war. It was the Rothschild’s Barings Bank that financed the slave trade, and a great many if not most of the slave traders were Jewish. Furthermore, we have adequate documentation that it was European Jewish bankers who stimulated the slavery-related rift in American society to instigate the civil war. In this context, Spielberg’s movie is an especially offensive false and mythical portrayal of the true facts. As one columnist noted, Spielberg’s movie “had too many negroes and too few Jews”. The upshot is that tens of millions of gullible Americans will take with them to their graves a totally and absolutely false understanding of a critical period in their nation’s history. This uniquely American process has always been obvious to citizens of other nations, and many have expressed concern that the targeting and exposure of young children to this pervasive political indoctrination would be detrimental to their development – as it has proven to be.
Schoolbooks were the same. American author James Loewen wrote an interesting book titled “Lies my teacher told me”, based on his review of leading textbooks of American History, which he concluded were “an embarrassing amalgam” of foolish optimism, blind patriotism, and misinformation. The titles are sufficient to guess the tone of the propagandised content. “Land of Promise, The American Way, Rise of the American Nation, Life and Liberty, the Challenge of Freedom, The Triumph of America, The Great Republic”, and many more, all covered with American flags. To paraphrase someone’s cute expression: In China, a chemistry text is titled “Principles of Chemistry”; in America it’s “Battling Electron Tyranny: the Rise of the Molecule”. This juvenile political-religious ideology pervades everything in America.
I have examined many American textbooks on many subjects, and have concluded that elementary school literature books and storybooks may be the most deserving of condemnation for their shameless proselytising of the same political and religious propaganda that exists throughout the US in all media. Stories where only Americans exhibit virtue and heroism, where only they display righteousness and generosity, all while overcoming ignorance and evil throughout the world. American author Frances Fitzgerald did a similar study of American history textbooks and concluded, “According to these books, the United States had been a kind of Salvation Army to the rest of the world: throughout history, it had done little but dispense benefits to poor, ignorant, and diseased countries. The United States always acted in a disinterested fashion, always from the highest of motives; it gave, never took.” One author noted that “It would be better not to know so many things than to know so many things that are not true”.
The Americans have done this with nations and cultures in addition to their own. Their first major attempt at colonisation was with their first invasion of the Philippines, after which they forced their language onto that nation and immediately followed with a carefully-chosen selection of American history, literature and propaganda. They spent years and countless thousands of hours in determining the best way to propagandise an entire nation of people to forget their own past, venerate their present colonial status, and learn to worship the Americans. The US did the same with many Central and South American nations, as did the UK with Hong Kong, rewriting the domestic history books to erase from consciousness those nations’ heroes, traditions and hopes of freedom from American imperialism.
You have read the story of Iraq and will not be surprised at the hatred the Iraqis hold for their American occupiers, but the US propaganda machine has not been idle here. For the past decade the US government has spent millions in writing propaganda and indoctrination articles and paying local media to run them. American soldiers are given what William Blum called “talking points” to help them spread the American Christian gospel to the natives. “We are not an occupying force. We are a values-based, people-focused team that strives to uphold the dignity and respect of all. We are moving forward together with the Iraqi government as partners in building a future for the sons and daughters of Iraq. We will help our Iraqi partners as they build their new and independent country and take their rightful place in the world community.” Given the brutal truths of Iraq, this kind of propaganda is reprehensible and those propagating it should be shot.
Most American education and entertainment, and even TV commercials, followed the same pattern of religious politicisation, indoctrination and propaganda. Americans were always moral and superior, battling for God in a world with no shades of grey. And it was rather worse than this, because the manipulation of public opinion on such a grand scale in any society requires the cooperation of government, the military, business, the media, advertising, publishing, entertainment and other industries. The controlling elite must all be single-mindedly reading from the same script to make this work and, with all these players, the temptation for mission creep was irresistible.
One of the natural and planned results of the incessant programmed propagation of these totally false historical mythologies, as per the preachings of Lippman and Bernays, was the destruction of intellectual independence. Americans were propagandised and programmed to see the world through the same pair of eyes – the pair their masters wanted them to look through. Contrary to American claims of free and independent thinking, ideological uniformity became paramount, where independent thinkers, dissidents and those with dissenting opinions most often found themselves immediately ostracised. One of the best examples of this is Noam Chomsky, a former MIT professor, prolific author and outspoken critic of much of the US system. Chomsky has been blacklisted by the US government and the media. One writer noted that his name appears almost nowhere; reviews of his books are nowhere to be found; his widely-attended public speeches apparently never occurred. The man has been ‘disappeared’ for daring to criticise the ideological narrative. In America, praying to the wrong god is dangerous.
Americans would never be so foolish as to permit foreign intellectuals to teach at their universities and promote other systems of government or economics. Freedom of speech in America means staying within the prescribed narrative. Stray from that, and you will quickly find yourself ostracised, unemployed and unemployable. To seriously propose the superiority of a political religion different than that of the US, to present its advantages without apology or back-tracking, is to disappear from the intellectual world. To factually present to American university students the multiple advantages and overall superiority of China’s one-party government is to beg for dismissal. Similarly, you can criticise capitalism all you like, but if you stray very far from praising the American predatory gospel of free markets, deregulation and lack of oversight, you will be gone. You are free to decry government intrusions into matters of civilian privacy, and the increasingly frightening US domestic surveillance, but you will at the same time continue to praise the (increasingly non-existent) freedoms and human rights so precious to the narrative.
As someone noted, the government may not show its hand, and indeed it may not have to do so; the institution itself will recognise the inherent danger and will remove you. The reasons for your dismissal will never be forthrightly discussed. The university will claim there was “little student interest in his class”, or it will make veiled accusations about your lack of professionalism, or question your competence, but you will definitely be dismissed and no other institution will hire you. In America, you do not stray from the narrative and survive. The channel for dissent does indeed exist, but is heavily circumscribed and must adopt an approved format. It is permissible in America to criticise democracy, and even to do it harshly, but one must end with a statement that in spite of all its faults it is still the world’s best system. It is only manipulated dissent that is permitted. True protest in America has always been presented as subversive, unpatriotic and seditious; witness the Vietnam war protesters, especially the university students, many of whom were simply shot by the authorities.
This censorship of dissent is even stronger today. Historical evidence demonstrates conclusively that single-party governments are far more successful in creating rapid development than are electoral democracies, witnessed by Japan, Taiwan, South Korea, China and Hong Kong. In 1998, John Wenders wrote an article from which I will quote here: “The Harvard Business School invited a prominent Hong Kong businessman, Philip Tose, to speak. After his speech, Mr. Tose was asked why he thought Hong Kong has prospered and India had languished. Mr. Tose replied, “One word: Democracy”. The faculty, of course, was aghast, and scrambled to disassociate itself from Mr. Tose’s questioning of the democracy icon. The dean of the faculty, Kim B. Clark, issued a statement declaring the businessman’s remarks as “totally at odds with my own views and those of the Harvard Business School faculty”.” So much for independent thinking and freedom of speech. In America, you can say whatever you want, so long as you don’t stray from the narrative. Actually, that’s not quite true. You can stray, but you can kiss your life good-bye in doing it.
A strident nationalism is an integral part of this pervasive, inescapable and perpetual indoctrination, which is why the American flag is everywhere. It is in churches, at home entrances, in offices, in storefronts, in schools and on university campuses, as a silent but incessant ideological reinforcement. Only in American supermarkets can you buy Freedom toilet paper plastered with American flags. The American national anthem is sung everywhere, the Pledge of Allegiance recited daily. David Kertzer, from Brown University, wrote, “Pledges of allegiance are marks of totalitarian states, not democracies. I can’t think of a single democracy except the United States that has a pledge of allegiance.” It is not a comforting experience to see ranks and files of automatons with their hands on their hearts, paying respect to a flag and mindlessly swearing allegiance to what is essentially a criminal enterprise. Nationalism, patriotism, faith, freedom and democracy are all part of the one American religion. The media for this national religion are everywhere. At ballgames, and in hundreds or even thousands of places, people listen to a prayer and sing their national anthem, an important reinforcement of their political religion, expressing a conviction that their nation and its system of values are blessed by God.
Patriotism and political-religious indoctrination and reinforcement of the American so-called values are even in the streets, literally. We have Independence Avenue, Freedom Boulevard, Democracy Road, Liberty Lane. Nowadays there may even be a Dictatorship Drive, just North of the Torture Turnpike. We have Freedom shopping malls, Liberty Parks and so much more. Virtually all American advertising takes advantage of this brainwashing propaganda. The Germans sell excellent cars on the basis of quality, dependability and good engineering. The Americans sell crappy cars based on freedom and taking control of your life. Perception is everything and substance nothing. Escape from the narrative is impossible. No other nation in the world has engaged in political-religious brainwashing propaganda on such a massive scale. Patriotism in America is neither natural nor spontaneous; it has been planned, programmed and instilled in all Americans from birth, at least all white Americans. It is often so foolish as to be comical and open to ridicule, but simultaneously rather frightening. Consider this example:
The media topic is that fewer Americans are buying live Christmas trees in favor of artificial ones that are less bother and are re-usable. The live tree industry feels a long-term threat to its survival. No politics here, no religion. But then this is America and things are different here. The problem, according to the US media, is not the change in consumer tastes but rather is China, specifically “China’s cheap, fake Christmas trees”. China is “threatening our authentic American trees” and, even more importantly, China is also threatening “the patriotic Americans” who supply the authentic American trees. The media article therefore advised all these threatened freedom-loving Americans to go out into the forest and find “a God-grown tree”. When you read this, do you laugh or cry?
The ideological uniformity created by their extensive programming resulted in Americans becoming the least adaptable of all peoples. European hotels offered an “American plan” because accommodation differing from that at home was too challenging for Americans to deal with. Every coffee shop was forced to offer Café Americano because Americans couldn’t bring themselves to drink repulsive concoctions called espresso or cappuccino, though these became suddenly popular after being re-invented by Starbucks and were then American. The list is long. Locals and expats in other countries have no shortage of stories about the pathetic failure of Americans to fit into a foreign environment, helplessly demanding that everything be delivered to them the way it is at home.
Even in Shanghai, many Americans will gather in what are essentially foreign compounds where they associate only with each other in what appears to be a desperate attempt to re-create an American environment with as little Chinese contamination as possible. For them, life is not different than living on the edge of Chinatown in Boston or New York, where they can have Chinese food if they want it but return home to their white lifestyle after dinner. But mostly they frequent Hooters and Malones and the American bars, and take the kids to KFC and McDonald’s to celebrate their foreign experience in China. American firms in China naturally expect all their Chinese employees to be fully fluent in English because no American can learn Chinese, and they constantly bellyache about laws or policies that are “backward” only in the fact that they differ from those in the US.
This same ideological uniformity not only prevents Americans from adapting but also renders them culturally color-blind, living in a one-dimensional American-colored world in which they misinterpret most of what they see. I was once walking on a Shanghai street with an American acquaintance when he commented on the numerous ‘wheelchair ramps’ that appeared on the curbs of most street intersections in both large and small cities. He then proceeded to enlighten me with his views on Chinese culture and attitudes, based on conclusions drawn from his observations of accommodation of the handicapped. I had to interrupt my education to inform him that those were not ‘wheelchair ramps’ but had instead been inserted for bicycles. The shrunken American mentality sees something foreign it often does not understand, interprets that misunderstanding in the light of what the events would mean if they occurred in the US, then draws a flurry of conclusions which are almost always nonsensical in their irrelevancy. In another case, “a world-famous psychology professor” at UCLA noted in a treatise that the Chinese need to lose their natural (or conditioned) “shyness and lack of confidence”. It was beyond both the imagination and the intellect of this stellar Harvard Ph.D. to realise that she was witnessing not shyness but modesty, one of the most charming and sincere of all Chinese characteristics, and certainly not one to be replaced with in-your-face American ‘confidence’.
And of course, it is the same at home. With all the immigration to the Promised Land of America, the US became – as Americans even today are proud to tell us – a “melting pot”. And this wasn’t a fake one. It was the real kind of melting pot, where the people at the bottom get burned and all the scum floats to the top. We often see articles or programs in the Western media about ethnic differences and the problems of cultural assimilation, for which the US coined the term “cultural melting pot”, and which has always been promoted to us as one of the great benefits of ‘freedom and democracy’. But in truth, this melting pot is precisely what we call cultural genocide. Americans talk glibly about how they treasure all the cultures that form their society, but that is bitterly false propaganda.
My ancestors emigrated to Canada from Eastern Europe a long time ago, and my parents still tried hard to maintain their cultural background, the language, the traditions, festivals and so on. But for my generation, that was almost impossible. There was great pressure on us to conform to North American cultural standards, which is to say, to a lack of a culture of any kind. I can recall in elementary school being ridiculed because of my parents’ accent, because of their sometimes-funny ways, because we ‘ate potatoes for breakfast’, because of the funny foreign languages we spoke. It was pervasive, incessant, inescapable, and often brutal. A US politician recently proposed that all Chinese and other Asians in the US should have to renounce their foreign names and adopt English ones because the Asian names were too difficult to pronounce. American adaptability at its finest.
As youngsters, we had no way of dealing with this except to renounce our heritage and try to become like everyone else – which mostly meant adopting the white, Anglo-Saxon model. That pressure was on everyone from every ethnic group from every country, with schools and government responsible for much of this assimilation pressure to renounce your ‘foreign’ cultural heritage and become truly white. However much the US (or Canada) preach about respecting minorities, the real-life experience is that you can succeed only by escaping your minority and becoming, if you can, part of the majority. And you can do that only by renouncing your heritage, your language, culture and traditions. And that really constitutes a cultural genocide. The overwhelmingly ideological political-religious fabric of North American society will not permit anyone to be very different. To enter this ‘melting pot’ is to emerge as some kind of homogenised nothingness. The only real freedom that exists in America – and the only “freedom” that Americans will grant the world, is the freedom to be like them.
You cannot maintain a separate cultural or political identity because the hive forces you to conform, forces everyone to think the same things, to see the world through the same pair of eyes and focused through the same distorted lenses of patriotism, religion and free-market capitalism. Appearance and mythology are everything; truth is nothing. The result of all the deafening marketing noise and generations of propaganda meant to hide the truth from everyone including the Americans themselves, the US is one of the least individualistic of all countries, with 300 million people all reading from the same script, all thinking and believing the same things, and all equally desperate to convince you of their individuality. To a foreigner, Americans often fit the dictionary definition of a hive mind so perfectly that in critical areas like international relations, they are frightening for the threat their ignorance and binary mentality pose to the rest of the world.
By contrast, Europe is impressive in that many geographically small countries in such close proximity still maintain 100% of their individual cultures. European countries do not ‘melt’ into each other. You will see a bit of fuzziness near the borders, but when you’re 5 Kms. inside Italy, you know absolutely that you are no longer in France. That is the result of a human cultural tolerance – “live and let live” – and that is precisely what Americans lack. Living in Rome, I enjoyed the charming coffee shop sign boards containing the price of coffee in about 15 different currencies. In the US, you can pay in American dollars or go back to your own stupid country. In terms of humanity, the Europeans do everything better than do the Americans. And so does China: With its 56 ethnic groups, you’d think there would be great pressure to assimilate, but all evidence points in the opposite direction. China’s government jealously protects and defends these people precisely to prevent their being assimilated, and has even created semi-autonomous provinces for their cultural benefit. When we experience the humanity and tolerance on other continents, we cannot avoid concluding that American promulgations of ethnic equality and respect are just rubbish.
The American inability to adapt was only a small part of the political and religious ideological programming, this inability being the sibling of a marked intolerance for all other peoples and cultures, and both being the offspring of their supremacist Christian racism, which is inherent in American ideology to a shocking degree. Americans are, and have always been, repugnantly and unapologetically racist. In an Al-Jazeera article, the writer, describing the US, wrote, “… the land is soaked with religiosity and racism [and] has been soaking in them for about 400 years. The result is that religion and racism are completely natural features in the landscape of public affairs – and to notice it would be like noticing the air you breath and the water you drink, and doing that is to stand outside of the normal patterns of political life”. One of the many telling signs of the deep and frightening racism embedded in the US psyche is that the only public debate on the issue of government-sponsored extra-judicial executions centered on the question of killing white Americans. No discussion arose, or was even necessary, on the murders of people of other races in other countries: “They’re not really humans, you know?”
Americans, individually and in their media, exhibit no reluctance to disparage or bash other nations and cultures, to mock, ridicule and condemn attitudes or practices that conflict with their political-religious narrative, yet they react with a surprising sensitivity to criticism directed at them. The US media feature a daily barrage of negative commentary on China and other nations, but when Americans in China or elsewhere experience any blowback or negative remarks they are offended and often become belligerent. They are so steeped in white colonial supremacy that they claim the trashing of other cultures as a right, with no apparent awareness of the repulsiveness of their own conduct or attitudes.
<BLOCKQUOTE>One American complained that as a geologist working for a Chinese company, his Chinese exploration manager told him that it was no business of his how many people died in the Cultural Revolution. His reaction was one of disbelief and offense, and of his being the victim of a great moral wrong. He said he felt “like a Judas Iscariot” – a despicable traitor to his God and his religion, for not forcing the issue with his manager. But if I take a job with an American company and question my manager about how many people his government tortured to death in Guantanamo Bay, what would he say? He would tell me to shut up, mind my own business, and do my work. But it’s not like that for the Americans because, steeped in the supremacist racism of their twisted Christianity, they have not only a right but a holy obligation to challenge other nations on any wrongs real or imagined, saddling every individual American with a God-given mission to ensure that all individuals in all other countries confess their mistakes openly to him. After all, he’s an American.</BLOCKQUOTE>
Their religious-political ideology has endowed them with a kind of superiority cloak which they drape on themselves as a natural order of things, sitting in their democratic, freedom-loving homes and offices, soaking in their human rights while brutalising most other populations on the planet. These attitudes of intolerance, inability to adapt, and superiority are all part of racism, all stemming from the same twisted Christian heresy, then blended with their particular dysfunctional version of multi-party politics and topped with a flag to form the American religion. All these and more are part of the same whole encompassed by the American definition of “democracy”.
Through the artifice of fabricated mythology, the indoctrination machine has successfully implanted in the American collective consciousness the conviction that the US is above all other nations in its ideals, values, political principals and moral character. This idea that America is morally “better”, has been so deeply embedded in the American psyche that it naturally extends itself to being above all man’s laws, including international law and those of other nations, to say nothing of being exempt from accepted norms of moral human behavior. Through generations of media exposure, the US has more or less successfully proselytised these notions to most Western countries as well, the problem with countries like China and Russia being their lack of such indoctrination and consequent lack of enthusiasm to accept these false superiority myths.
When Americans conduct their extensive meddling and interference in the internal affairs of China or Russia, these actions are justified by this superior scaffolding of principles and values. “It may not be really nice of us to do these things, but we’re doing it for their own good and they will be better off and happier afterward.” With this rationalisation process, typical Americans will agree that it wasn’t very nice to hijack Hawaii or Puerto Rico, but will then add, “and so what? Today they have American values and government, and they’re happier and more prosperous. We did them a favor.” They will agree that it wasn’t nice to destroy Iraq and cause such enormous loss of life, but “they’re better off now with our democracy, and besides, we removed a dictator and set the people free”. All the meddling in China and Russia, the attempts to destabilise the current order, are seen through the same pair of eyes. “Maybe it’s not very nice, but it’s good for them. We’re offering them “freedom”, and they will be better off because of us.”
This overpowering fog of moral superiority that envelops almost everything American, serves as a shield to protect by rationalisation and justification virtually the entire gamut of American misbehavior, sins, crimes and atrocities. It also functions as blinders, as for a horse, preventing Americans from seeing other than the restricted narrow view directly ahead of them. Of course, this moral superiority is heavily supported by the uniquely flaky and belligerent American theology with its cornerstone of racism applied to most of the world’s peoples. Europe is safe because it’s white. The Americans do their best to disparage European culture and traditions on the basis that “the old world” is backward and outdated, but effective political slander requires racism to gain any real traction, and racism isn’t a realistic weapon against most Europeans.
Reinhold Niebuhr once said that what promised no end of grief was Americans’ arrogant conviction that “Providence has summoned America to tutor all of humankind on its pilgrimage to perfection”. It is this same warped moral superiority that prompts the US State Department to produce its annual reports that presume to evaluate and judge the behavior of the world’s nations on areas like human rights and freedoms. As the years pass, these politically-driven evaluations have increasingly become so transparently hypocritical that the US is becoming the laughingstock of the world. A nation that tortures people by the tens of thousands, many to the death, is in no position to scold others for what are by comparison trivial acts. A nation that has virtually eviscerated its entire framework of civil freedoms in only a few years, is in an unsuitable position to point fingers at the many other societies that are now in fact and reality much more “free” than is America – and this list certainly includes China. The little moral capital the US still possessed was squandered on its delusional espionage ambitions beginning with Hillary Clinton’s UN DNA-collecting fiasco followed by the lies and cover-ups on the NSA revelations.
There is one other major part to the American political religion that isn’t often identified as being an integral feature but has nevertheless been embedded in the forced indoctrination of generations of Americans, this portion being their predatory ‘law of the jungle’ capitalism. Many years ago, US Secretary of State John Foster Dulles claimed, “There are two kinds of people in the world: Christians who believe in free enterprise and the other kind”. That says it all. Anyone wanting to be a member of the team, in fact anyone wanting an American identity, was expected to adhere to the capitalist mantra of big business and of the elites whose only aim was to eviscerate the middle class and gather all wealth to itself. Americans have been so brainwashed by generations of commercial propaganda that they now almost unanimously support their own headlong rush into poverty, because to object to it is to defy God’s will.
For a century, US corporations and government agencies filled the minds and hearts of Americans with fear of socialism and, once that fear was stoked, defined for them the signs of socialism that had to be avoided at all costs. These signs included the government doing its job by providing for its citizens in areas like electricity, communications, transportation, health care, social security, now even including education, presented to the people as “giving up your life and letting the government run it for you”. Any government involvement in any segment of society or industry where big business and the elites could make a profit was defined as either socialism or communism and therefore treasonous to the basic religion of multi-party political Christianity. The propaganda was so powerful that it became virtually impossible for an average American to be a Christian socialist or a believer in both democracy and social security, or to be any of these and simultaneously against big business. To have an American identity is to accept all chapters of the Bible of Freedom. One cannot pick and choose which of God’s laws he will follow. Ideological uniformity is a prerequisite for those living in a black and white world and practicing an all-or-nothing religion.
From wide reading of American news and often of the commentary made by numerous readers, it is abundantly clear that the fabricated historical myths have been so deeply impressed into the average American mind that intelligent discussion becomes impossible. As an example, one online commenter on a US news site is typical of the tragic disparity between myth and reality, in this instance claiming the US had immeasurably improved life for inhabitants of most nations. In his arguments in favor of a positive American contribution to the post World War II world, he listed Korea and the Korean war, apparently ignorant of all the facts of this fabricated war and the immense human tragedy of US involvement. In the same breath, he listed the blockade and separation of Taiwan from China as a world benefit. He proudly quoted US support of Israel, “the only democracy in the Middle East”, apparently unaware that Iran had been a democracy long before Israel existed and that Israel was more recognisable as a brutal and genocidal apartheid fascist state than a so-called democracy.
He stated his widely-shared, but false, belief that the US liberated most of Europe in the Second War. He listed the stationing of hundreds of thousands of US troops in post-war Europe as a world blessing, apparently ignorant of the underlying policies of US military bases. He listed the US “Fighting the cold war all over the world, directly and through proxy” as a positive, ignorant of the cold war having been a manufactured contrivance for American hegemony and of the tally of lives and misery contained in his “proxies”.
He ended his commentary with this question: “Tell me what the world would look like today if the US had demilitarized after WW2 the way Canada did”. To respond to his query is to struggle for a sensible place to begin. For one thing, there would have been no war to destroy Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia, no loss of 5 million lives nor the tragedies of Agent Orange and napalm. Indonesia would have avoided one of the largest mass exterminations in history. There would have been no Afghanistan, no Iraq, no Libya, nor dozens of other military travesties. There would have been no Cold War. There would have been no brutal puppet dictators enthroned in 50 nations on three continents. The world would not have witnessed dozens of national leaders assassinated; dozens of nations plundered of their resources. There would have been no vast network of torture prisons covering the world. In short, we would have had peace instead of war, tens of millions of people would not have died and another several hundred million would not have suffered so bitterly. But these facts contradict the propaganda and challenge American historical myths, and cannot be permitted to assume credibility. Debate or discussion become pointless when confronted with stubborn ideology and myth. This man, like countless millions of Americans, believes what he has been told and taught. He has his teachers and professors, his history books, his movies and TV programs, all confirming his beliefs. His convictions are reinforced daily by his news media, by his government and military leaders, his priests and ministers. His support system is permanently in place. Why would he pay heed to unpleasant external contradictions? Michael Parenti expressed the situation perfectly when he wrote “The enormous gap between what US leaders do in the world and what Americans think their leaders are doing is one of the great propaganda accomplishments of the dominant political mythology.”
Another part of this fabricated mythology to which American adhere tenaciously is that of the US subsidising the “defense” of the Western world, with many insisting that the US government demand other nations “pay their fair share” for their defense. It is astonishing anyone could possess a mind so illogical as to believe this story, but believe it they do. In what way does the world’s “defense” require more than 1,000 American military bases spread around the world? Against whom is the world being defended with the US filling the South Seas with naval vessels and staffing the world’s largest military base in Guam? Against whom is the world being defended with NATO’s missiles ringing Russia? There is no nation in the world threatening wars of aggression except the US and Israel. There is nothing against which to defend, except the constant military aggression of the US itself. Without the US and Israel, and the Khazar Jews in the City of London, without the CIA and Mossad, there would be no wars other than perhaps minor local skirmishes. The US is not ‘bearing the burden’ of defending anyone, but is spending its own money on imperialist dreams of global domination. Yet Americans foolishly persist in the fiction that the world isn’t paying its share of the military determined to dominate it.
There is much material added to this basic programming on a daily basis, false information offered without evidence but fitting the narrative, especially involving the demonisation of people and other nations, as can be seen with the US media onslaught against China. A great many Americans “know” – because their narrative has told them – that China stole all their jobs, that China cheats on trade, that the Chinese have no “freedom” and, of course, that “all Chinese are brainwashed”. Likewise, historical myths about Tibet and Xinjiang have been impressed onto gullible minds with an inflammatory emotional narrative and are now unlikely to change. In late 2013 most Chinese learned of the American TV program where a small child advised that the best way to deal with the US foreign debt was to kill everyone in China. The child of course obtained these attitudes from his parents, but there were no repercussions; the program director offered a casual and oblique apology and the network ignored the issue. It was not accidental; the program had been pre-recorded and the offensive comment could have been cut. But it wasn’t cut; it was there because the network wanted it there.
The US government and media promote hatred and racism toward China for its unwillingness to become a subservient American colony, with Canada and other Right-Wing countries following in lock-step, dehumanising an entire civilisation of people for cheap political gain. On a daily basis, Americans are taught to hate. In these Western nations that so self-righteously claim superior morality and anti-hate legislation, all is hypocrisy. In the mythical narrative, you will forgive whom you are told to forgive and you will hate whom you are told to hate.
Mr. Romanoff’s writing has been translated into 32 languages and his articles posted on more than 150 foreign-language news and politics websites in more than 30 countries, as well as more than 100 English language platforms. Larry Romanoff is a retired management consultant and businessman. He has held senior executive positions in international consulting firms, and owned an international import-export business. He has been a visiting professor at Shanghai’s Fudan University, presenting case studies in international affairs to senior EMBA classes. Mr. Romanoff lives in Shanghai and is currently writing a series of ten books generally related to China and the West. He is one of the contributing authors to Cynthia McKinney’s new anthology ‘When China Sneezes’. (Chapt. 2 — Dealing with Demons).
His full archive can be seen at:
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Copyright © Larry Romanoff, Blue Moon of Shanghai, Moon of Shanghai, 2022