Arts, Briefly

In a new play at the [tag]National Theater in London[/tag], 27 actors perform for 90 minutes without uttering a word. The attraction is “[tag]The Hour We Knew Nothing of Each Other[t/ag],” by the Austrian playwright [tag]Peter Handke[/tag]. The script has 60 pages of stage directions and no dialogue, although there are bangs, crashes, screams and laughter, The Independent of London reported. Mr. Handke said that the idea came to him in the 1980s when he found dramatic meaning in the comings and goings in a town square near Trieste, Italy. “Is there much to discover in it?” he said of his play. “I don’t know.”

From the New York Times

See Also: Review – The Hour We Knew Nothing of Each Other, National Theatre
Silence Is Olden

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Fourteen Characteristics of Fascism

Dr. Lawrence Britt, a political scientist, wrote an article about fascism which appeared in Free Inquiry magazine, a journal of humanist thought. Dr. Britt studied the fascist regimes of Hitler (Germany), Mussolini (Italy), Franco (Spain), Suharto (Indonesia), and Pinochet (Chile) and found that the regimes had 14 things in common.

The 14 characteristics are:

1.. Powerful and Continuing Nationalism – Fascist regimes tend to make constant use of patriotic mottos, slogans, symbols, songs, and other paraphernalia. Flags are seen everywhere, as are flag symbols on clothing and in public displays.

2.. Disdain for the Recognition of Human Rights – Because of fear of enemies and the need for security, the people in fascist regimes are persuaded that human rights can be ignored in certain cases because of “need.” The people tend to ‘look the other way’ of even approve of torture, summary executions, assassinations, long incarcerations of prisoners, etc.

3.. Identification of Enemies/Scapegoats as a Unifying Cause – The people are rallied into a unifying patriotic frenzy over the need to eliminate a perceived common threat or foe; racial, ethnic or religious minorities; liberals; communists; socialists; terrorists, etc.

4.. Supremacy of the Military – Even when there are widespread domestic problems, the military is given a disproportionate amount of government funding, and the domestic agenda is neglected. Soldiers and military service are glamorized.

5.. Rampant Sexism – The government if fascist nations tend to be almost exclusively male-dominated. Under fascist regimes, traditional gender roles are made more rigid. Opposition to abortion is high, as is homophobia and anti-gay legislation and national policy.

6.. Controlled Mass Media – Sometimes the media is directly controlled by the government, but in other cases, the media is indirectly controlled by government regulation, or through sympathetic media spokespeople and executives. Censorship, especially in wartime, is very common.

7.. Obsession with National Security – Fear is used as a motivation tool by the government over the masses.

8.. Religion and Government are Intertwined – Governments in fascist nations tend to use the most common religion in the nation as a tool to manipulate public opinion. Religious rhetoric and terminology is common from government leaders, even when the major tenets of the religion are diametrically opposed to the government’s policies or actions.

9.. Corporate Power is Protected – The industrial and business aristocracy of a fascist nation often are the ones who put the government leaders in power, creating a mutually beneficial business/government relationship and power elite.

10.. Labor Power is Suppressed – Because the organizing power of labor is the only real threat to a fascist government, labor unions are either eliminated entirely or are severely suppressed.

11.. Disdain for Intellectuals and the Arts – Fascist nations tend to promote and tolerate open hostility to higher education, and academia. It is not uncommon for professors and other academics to be censored or even arrested. Free expression in the arts is openly attacked, and governments often refuse to fund the arts.

12.. Obsession with Crime and Punishment – Under fascist regimes, the police are given almost limitless power to enforce laws. The people are often willing to overlook police abuses, and even forego civil liberties, in the name of patriotism. There is often a national police force with virtually unlimited power in fascist nations.

13.. Rampant Cronyism and Corruption – Fascist regimes almost always are governed by groups of friends and associates who appoint each other to government positions, and who use governmental power and authority to protect their friends from accountability.

14.. Fraudulent Elections – Sometimes elections in fascist nations are a complete sham. Other times elections are manipulated by smear campaigns against (or even the assassination of) the opposition candidates, the use of legislation to control voting numbers or political district boundaries, and the manipulation of the media. Fascist nations also typically use their judiciaries to manipulate or control elections.

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endorsorama

OBAMARAMA baby!

Because we don’t live in a real democracy, I can’t endorse my true favorite. This man would restore honor and truth to America. Or at least truthiness. That’s why I’d like to endorse Stephen Colbert for president.

Could you imagine the sarcastic irony he could employ while meeting with our great democratic friends in Russia, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, ….

But since he dropped out, I’ve swung my allegiances to Obama. Obama is the only Democrat that is opposed to the drug war. He denounced the war for what it was. He inspires people, and is one of the greatest orators of all time. I think he could serious have a lot of republicans for Obama on his side, even though he is the most liberal Senator in Congress. There is no way Hillary could get Republicans (except for Coulter) on her side. Whether or not she actually deserves it, there are a lot of people who have strong negative emotional reactions to her. I don’t think she would be terrible, but I think that Obama would lead progressively with courage and convictions. That’s why I’m going to vote for Obama, and still my state will probably vote Republican by > 60%. Democracy!

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The Simpsons Are Flying With Xenu

Longtime Scientologist Nancy Cartwright — best known as the voice of Bart Simpson — last year gave the church $10 million to help spread the word of founder L. Ron Hubbard across the globe. It was all part of Scientology’s Global Salvage effort, which aims to “de-aberrate” Earth — meaning to rid mankind of psychological ills and other “aberrant” behavior. Surprisingly, Nancy, 50, forked over twice as much as the Scientology’s most prominent member, Tom Cruise, who only gave $5 million in an installment plan.

Here are some of the celebrity gifts to Scientology from 2007 and their corresponding awards:

Nancy Cartwright, 50, Patron Laureate Award: $10 million.
Kirstie Alley, 57, Diamond Meritorious Award: $5 million.
John Travolta, 53, Gold Meritorious Award: $1 million.
Kelly Preston, 45, Gold Meritorious Award: $1 million.
Priscilla Presley, 62, Patron Award: $50,000.

bart simpsons floating for cash naked

Data from Page Six.

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Abjure

abjurev. to renounce a claim, a belief, or cause

Build your vocab with PBH!

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