Seventy Years Ago Today …

( – promoted by buhdydharma )

..  the great Irish poet William Butler Yeats went down into the hollow hills to rest with his ancestors.

Can anyone read those last two ineffable lines from his most famous poem without getting a cold chill? I’ve never been able to. Hell, I’m reading them right this second and they’re totally freaking me out.

Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;

Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,

The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere

The ceremony of innocence is drowned;

The best lack all conviction, while the worst

Are full of passionate intensity.

….

The darkness drops again; but now I know

That twenty centuries of stony sleep

Were vexed to nightmare by a rocking cradle,

And what rough beast, its hour come round at last,

Slouches towards Bethlehem to be born?

4 comments

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    • Edger on January 28, 2009 at 6:14 pm

    Edward Bernays, the so-called father of public relations, wrote about an invisible government which is the true ruling power of our country. He was referring to journalism, the media.

    That was almost 80 years ago, not long after corporate journalism was invented. It is a history few journalist talk about or know about, and it began with the arrival of corporate advertising. As the new corporations began taking over the press, something called “professional journalism” was invented. To attract big advertisers, the new corporate press had to appear respectable, pillars of the establishment-objective, impartial, balanced. The first schools of journalism were set up, and a mythology of liberal neutrality was spun around the professional journalist. The right to freedom of expression was associated with the new media and with the great corporations, and the whole thing was, as Robert McChesney put it so well, “entirely bogus”.

    For what the public did not know was that in order to be professional, journalists had to ensure that news and opinion were dominated by official sources, and that has not changed.

    Too many of the big left blogs, to attract big advertisers, think they have to appear respectable, to ensure that news and opinion is dominated by official sources, to never question or push the new president, to become mere mouthpieces for power as corporate media did almost 80 years ago.

    To give him a pass if he gives war criminals a pass.

    What’s LEFT Of Blogs?

  1. …there’s lots of it.  Though for my money, the scariest lines he wrote (except perhaps for a poem I diaried some time ago), the lines I recall in deepest despair, would be from the Hosting of the Sidhe:


    And if any gaze on our rushing band,  

    We come between him and the deed of his hand,  

    We come between him and the hope of his heart.  

    The host is rushing ‘twixt night and day,  

    And where is there hope or deed as fair?

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