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Superpartriotism - Michael Parenti

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Superpartriotism - Michael Parenti

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I came across this book while at the bookstore on my lunch hour today.Quote:Superpatriots, writes Michael Parenti, are those people who place national pride and American supremacy above every other public consideration, those who follow leaders uncritically, especially in their war policies abroad. Superpatriotism is the nationalistic hype propagated by officialdom, the media, and various flag-waving groups.Parenti demonstrates how superpatriotism attaches itself to religion, sports, the military, the schools and big business. He questions whether its top politico-economic propagators are themselves really patriotic, given how they evade taxes, export our jobs, pollute our land and plunder the public treasury.With incisive probing and a humorous touch, Parenti addresses such urgent questions as: What does it mean to love one's country? Why is it so important to be Number One? What determines America's "greatness?" He examines how US leaders and the corporate media fan the flames of fear to win support for huge arms budgets, global aggrandizement, and the suppression of political dissent at home and abroad.Finally, he poses an alternative to superpatriotism, arguing that the real patriots are those who care enough to educate themselves about our country's history and its present plight. He reminds us that it is not "anti-American" to criticize unjust social conditions at home or oppose global policies pursued by our rulers. Rather it is our democratic right and patriotic duty to do so.Michael Parenti is one of the nation's leading progressive political analysts. An internationally known writer and speaker, he is the author of 17 books, including Democracy for the Few (seventh ed.) and The Assassination of Julius Caesar: A People's History of Ancient Rome. He has also published over 250 articles in scholarly journals, political periodicals, popular magazines, and nationally known newspapers. He lives in Berkeley, CA.Amazon Link to "Superpatriotism"Mr. P. The one thing of which I am positive is that there is much of which to be negative - Mr. P.The pain in hell has two sides. The kind you can touch with your hand; the kind you can feel in your heart...Scorsese's "Mean Streets"I came to kick ass and chew Bubble Gum...and I am all out of Bubble Gum - They Live, Roddy Piper
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Re: Superpartriotism - Michael Parenti

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I've been a close reader of Michael Parenti for a number of years now and have seen him speak on multiple occasions and have been able to discuss political issues with him at a few book signings and at Peets Coffee in Berkeley while the two of us were standing in line to purchase our drinks. He's a very gifted intellectual with a wonderful sense of humor and knows how to pick his fights with the left and the right. I think Superpatriotism is an important book, but not his best. I think his The Assassination of Julius Caesar: A People's History of Ancient Rome. is his finest piece of scholarship and an powerful critique of ideological laden classical history and academic historians.Here's a portion of something he has written recently, titled Why the Corporate Rich Oppose Environmentalism which is made available for those who subscribe to ZNet's Sustainer ProgramQuote:In recent years, Bushite reactionaries within the White House and Congress, fueled by corporate lobbyists, have supported measures to (1) allow unregulated toxic fill into lakes and harbors, (2) eliminate most of the wetland acreage that was to be set aside for a reserve, (3) completely deregulate the production of chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) that deplete the ozone layer, (4) eviscerate clean water and clean air standards, (5) open the unspoiled Arctic wildlife refuge in Alaska to oil and gas drilling, (6) defund efforts to keep raw sewage out of rivers and away from beaches, (7) privatize and open national parks to commercial development, ( 8 ) give the remaining ancient forests over to unrestrained logging, (9) repeal the Endangered Species Act, (10) and allow mountain-top removal in mining that has transformed thousands of miles of streams and vast amounts of natural acreage into toxic wastelands. Why do rich and powerful interests take this seemingly suicidal anti-environmental route? We can understand why they might want to destroy public housing, public education, Social Security, and Medicaid. They and their children will not thereby be deprived of a thing, having more than sufficient private means to procure whatever services they need for themselves. The plutocrats are more wedded to their wealth than to the Earth upon which they live, more concerned with the fate of their fortunes than with the fate of humanity. The struggle over environmentalism is part of the class struggle itself, a fact that seems to have escaped many environmentalists. The present ecological crisis has been created by the few at the expense of the many. This time the plutocratic drive to "accumulate, accumulate, accumulate" may take all of us down, once and forever.
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