About 100 Years Ago, Rudolph Valentino Described Americans…And His Words Ring True Today

In 1922 a journalist named Willis Goldbeck interviewed Rudolph Valentino in Motion Picture Magazine. Although it carried an enticing title–The Perfect Lover–Valentino opined in this article about the 18th Amendment which established Prohibition, as well as his views about the passivity of Americans, words that seem prescient and which could apply to a large part of the American public today.

Weighty discussion in Motion Picture magazinE
circa 1922

Valentino was baffled about how comparatively well-educated Americans at the time seemed to be so intellectually passive:

Valentino said:

“I CANNOT UNDERSTAND YOU AMERICANS….”

Back then, Valentino was comparing Americans to his European understanding of the world. In the context of today, I would define “Americans” with the characteristics he described as being the current masses of Trump voters, evangelicals, and many of the Americans who sit glued to reality TV for hours at a time, totally oblivious to national and international news. In 1922, Valentino called out the “individualism” that we are told Americans possess…he could see even then how thinking was already reduced to mass acceptance of messaging presented to them. Today we have social media and toxic right wing media spouting “alternative facts” both which makes things even worse compared to how Valentino saw the papers and the public then…propounding and the public accepting. The trashy tabloids and William Randolph Hearst’s “yellow journalism” reached the masses and Valentino’s personal issues with unrelenting press coverage certainly made him sensitive to issues regarding the press.

One hundred years later, things haven’t changed that much…

Out of Commission….and Out the Door

By InsightAnalytical

A Weight Has Lifted…

By InsightAnalytical-GRL

VOTE!

#OnlytheYoung

Cofounder of @Eleven_Films

Source: Congressman Eric Swalwell, https://twitter.com/ericswalwell/status/1322161334696386560

and via Kurt Eichenwald……https://twitter.com/kurteichenwald

Donald Trump and His Following Are Turning the U.S. into His Very Own “Peoples Temple”

By InsightAnalytical~GRL

It was November 1978 and I was in San Francisco on a business trip. I was doing a market research project involving prototype microwave ovens, but the ovens that had been shipped out from Princeton, NJ wound up going overseas for some reason. So, while waiting from them to come back to SF so we could start the interviewing, I had time to explore. I wen up to wine country, saw the Redwoods and caught up with a techie cousin of mine.

Then, I saw a newscast on a local station…Rep. Leo Ryan (D) had been murdered along with reporters, camera people and others.  (One survivor was current Congresswoman   Jackie Speier, then a staff member for Ryan.)  The footage was raw and unsettling.   What had happened?

Well, we learned that Rep. Ryan had gone down to Guyana to find out what was going on at a religious commune run by a fanatic named Jim Jones.  There had been reports of human rights abuses that led Rep. Ryan to make his fatal trip.

from Wikipedia:

Later that same day, 909 inhabitants of Jonestown,[93] 304 of them children, died of apparent cyanide poisoning, mostly in and around the settlement’s main pavilion.[94] This resulted in the greatest single loss of American civilian life (murder + suicide, though not on American soil) in a deliberate act until the September 11 attacks.[95] The FBI later recovered a 45-minute audio recording of the suicide in progress

Later-released Temple films show Jones opening a storage container full of Kool Aid in large quantities. However, empty packets of grape Flavor Aid found on the scene show that this is what was used to mix the solution, along with a sedative.

According to escaping Temple members, children were given the drink first by their own parents, families were told to lie down together…

Wikipedia has a good rundown of the life of James Warren Jones. I won’t go into the details here, but to suffice to say he was born in Indiana, where he founded his People’s Temple in the 1950’s, then became ordained in 1957 by the Pentecostal Independent Assemblies of God. In 1964 he was also ordained by the Disciples of Christ, wound up in California and started focusing on the large cities.  By the early 1970’s he and his Peoples Temple were fixture in San Francisco, where he became influential with political leaders, local and national (you will recognize ALL the names), as well as as having close ties to leading columnists at the San Francisco Chronicle. In other words, he knew how to play the game, much like today’s crop of evangelicals have come to have influence particularly with the Republican Party and certain media outlets.

Finally,  Marshall Kilduff, a journalist with the Chronicle wrote an expose which the Chronicle refused to print so he finally had to go to a publication called New West to get his story into print.

So, where are we today as the COVD-19 virus ravages the United States? To be sure, there are many religious groups and churches that understand and accept the science of COVD-19 However, there are an alarming number of evangelicals who have the ear of Donald Trump.

We see stories like this:

The rightwing Christian preachers in deep denial over Covid-19’s danger

Most white evangelicals satisfied with Trump’s initial response to the COVID-19 outbreak–Pew Research

Jerry Falwell Jr reopens Liberty University, 12 students quickly display COVID-19 symptoms

Trump’s Megachurch Allies Promise COVID-19 Snake Oil and ‘Miracles’

Amid COVID-19 Spread, Influential D.C. Pastor Says ‘God’s Wrath’ Caused By LGBTQ People NOTE:  This Pastor is Ralph Drollinger who leads a Bible study group for Trump’s cabinet members

Coronavirus: Trump and religious right rely on faith, not science

Just plug in a search for “Evangelicals and COVD-10” and you will see an endless list of stories on this subject ((add “Trump” and you’ll see a similar list, with many of the same links).

So, here we are.  We have lemming GOP politicians, already under the thumb of their evangelical base (and many of them “believers” as well), combined with a amoral Trump playing the “religion card” to the hilt.

One can argue that the Kool-Aid drinkers of Guyana have been magically re-seeded on the banks of the Potomac and in Trump’s White House and the government offices of the United States, as well as in states run by GOP governors.  We are now witnessing Trump’s own “Peoples Temple.”  The only problem is, these compounds are not self-contained…they are controlling  a nationwide army of “believers” who are blindly following Trump, and who, in turn,  are feeding Trump’s megalomania and narcissism. He is surrounded by his faithful staff, his family, and has purged those who try to speak against him (i.e Inspector Generals).  Dr. Fauci walks on eggshells, and even when Trump seems to be listening to Fauci, he still manages to undermine the message.

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So, are we now ALL at the mercy of the Kool-Aid cultists?   Now and into the future?

NOTE:  Kool-Aid was not used in the poisoning; a product called Flavor Aid was used. Both brands are known to have been at the compound.

The Merriman-Webster dictionary has this definition of the phrase “drink the Kool-Aid”:

drink the Kool-Aid

[after a 1978 mass suicide in Guyana brought about when members of the Peoples Temple cult were ordered to consume a flavored drink mixed with cyanide] : to comply unquestioningly with the demands or policies of a particular leader, ideology, or organization