Thursday, December 11, 2003

Sometimes I look at the quotation on the top of my sidebar and wonder whether it still fits.
    “The loss of liberty in general would soon follow the supression (sic) of the liberty of the press; for it is an essential branch of liberty, so perhaps it is preservative of the whole. “
    John Peter Zenger (1697-1746)
The thing is, I'm not sure how it can be modified because it's more than 'suppression', now that the regular press has essentially been bought out, as this excellent article in the smirking chimp describes in depressing detail.

On the topic of 'consume, consume, consume', which the Valenzuela article above discusses in hearty detail, I recently ran across two related articles, one from a very American point of view, the second a more complex treatment of the subject, via the very excellent blog, a buddha's meme. There's more to the consumption problem than the influence of television, a criticism I have Valenzuela's editorial. How To Save The World, which I rank as an exceptionally important blog to follow, thoroughly discusses this and related topics regularly. Having avoided television with our little one, making an exception for an occasional video, we have dodged the commercialized childhood bullet just a little bit longer. We're grateful that happiness still comes from hours of imaginative play and good books. Our fingers are crossed because we're now in public education.
Update: The Boston Review is currently not online with the article, The New Politics of Consumption, by Schor. I found another posting here on

Getting back to the quote, it comes from the forward of a book called Thy Will Be Done that is itself suppressed although the authors, Colby and Dennett, have come up with a different word describing what's going on.
    From Dog Ear Press:Learn what it means to have your book “privished” – published – but deliberately sabotaged in the market – giving the impression that it just didn’t sell enough to be reprinted.
It's a rigorously documented book about how the natural resources of South America were co-opted using the tools of religion and outright force, including genocide. I think it's required reading and provides an interesting background to what's going on now in the Middle East. Coincidentally, it is damned hard to find and if you do find it, it'll cost you an arm and a leg, if not your next unborn child. I'm kidding just a bit.