My second batch of books for Christmas

Nipawin -Sunday, December 31, 2001 - by: Mario deSantis


Yesterday, I spent few words on the first batch of books I received for Christmas, and today I am going to describe the second batch of books I ordered just before Christmas and that I will be receiving maybe today or tomorrow. I had no particular intention to order this second batch of books. However, two or three days before Christmas as I was casually watching TV with my family. I became more attentive as I saw Canadian philosopher John Ralston Saul being interviewed. Until two months ago I didn't even know who John Ralston Saul was. I knew that Adrienne Clarkson had been appointed Governor General of Canada and that she married few years ago, but I never knew she was married to John Ralston Saul until recently. Now I realize how much discriminating our minds are, and how discriminating our education can be by letting people, young or old, not know about John Ralston Saul. Thanks to the Internet, I became aware of Saul's work as I could have been searching for the words 'corporate globalization.'




I have worked with the Saskatchewan Health-Care Association (today's Saskatchewan Association of Health Organizations) and with educational colleges and I couldn't rationalize the command and control management structure of these non-profit organizations. I concluded that the leadership of these organizations was corrupted, but then I became confused and perplexed as I realized that this discretional command and control management was widespread. It is here that John Ralston Saul came to my rescue as he described this societal problem under the term "corporatism."




Saul says that corporatism dominates our age, and that corporatism includes not only big businesses but our bureaucracies and other agencies, all working for their own selected interests and therefore against the common good of people at large. I had an individual understanding of organizational corruption of the "command and control" management, and Saul has provided the societal understanding of this organizational corruption under the term "corporatism." It was just because of the explanation of the single word "corporatism" that I was drawn to pay attention to the work of Saul.




Going back to Saul's interview being broadcast on TV, he mentioned that really all our major religions are basically no different from each other as if you take into consideration any fundamental tenet of any religion you cannot distinguish it from other religions. Saul also added that there are no specific solutions to our societal problems as these problems are of our own making: the lack of participatory democracy. After I watched Saul's interview on TV I wanted to know more about his work and I ordered these books:
Voltaires Bastards The Dictatorship Of Reason. This book deals with today's priesthood of rationalism and the breakdown of democracy as our technocrats and experts have taken over the direction of our society. This book was written in 1992 and took ten years to write, and as a consequence we must respect the intelligent societal understanding of John Ralston Saul. In our own writing in Ensign we have confirmed the breakdown of our democracy as we uncovered the demented mentality of our revered gurus, for example health care expert Ken Fyke and former Saskatchewan premier Roy Romanow.


Doubters Companion: A Dictionary of Common Sense. John Ralston Saul criticizes our elitist leadership as their technocratic and legalist gurus corrupt our language and make it unintelligible to common people. This is what Saul says "Language is the first thing that matters; things follow from language. It doesn't follow from economics... In our society, we have always proceeded behind language. We can't do or think what we can't say." Saul's explanation of language, though more restrictive, is somewhat compatible with Humberto Maturana's understanding of 'Languaging' as coordination of behaviour.
The Unconscious Civilization. This is a book originating from John Ralston Saul's CBC Massey Lecture Series. Saul debunks the myth of the Free Market as the source of freedom and democracy and he is overwhelmingly concerned with the ideology of corporatism. Sauls says "Our civilization is locked in the grip of an ideology - corporatism. An ideology that denies and undermines the legitimacy of individuals as the citizen in a democracy. The particular imbalance of this ideology leads to a worship of self-interest and a denial of the public good. The practical effects on the individual are passivity and conformism in the areas that matter, and non-conformism in the areas that don't." We definitely agree with Saul's understanding of the Free Market as we were able to define Free market as a global conspiracy to break down our democracies.
On Equilibrium. This recent book has created quite a lot of controversies against John Ralston Saul. Izzy Asper's journalist Darren Warren has accused Saul of monopolizing the understanding of our humanity as Saul uses the common words of common sense, ethics, imagination, intuition, memory and reason, while another journalist, Diane Francis, felt outraged that Saul, husband of the Queen's representative in Canada, released this book that includes undiplomatic comments about the President of the United States. As I am concerned, I feel that this book, On Equilibrium, is another consequential effort for Saul to identify our essential human qualities above the technocratic and neoclassical understanding of the Free Market as a source of freedom. We are not driven by reason only, and Saul's explanations of our essential human qualities of common sense, ethics, imagination, intuition, memory and reason are another way to explain what educational psychologist Howard Gardner has described as multiple intelligences, or what biologist Humberto Maturana has described as what it means of being human.
  And I got another book...
On the day before Christmas, as I navigated through the Internet, I came across the book Fortunate Son: George W. Bush and the Making of an American President by Jim. H. Hatfield and I immediately ordered it. I immediately ordered the book because I found out that the book was already printed in 1999 when the oiled Bush Electoral machinery filed lawsuits against the original publisher and their distributors as they challenged Hatfiled's allegation that George W. Bush had been arrested in 1972 for cocaine possession. The book was taken away from circulation, the Bush electoral machinery unearthed the news that Hatfield had been in the past a convicted felon, and the author eventually committed suicide in July 2001 after so much suffering for having been discredited and financially ruined. But Hatfield's book has been now published by the new publisher Soft Skull Press and his truth has been unchallenged by the Bush entourage. I bought this book to understand better the workings of our decadent democracies. Now as I think about journalist Diane Francis's remark on how John Paul Ralston dared to speak undiplomatically against George Bush. I have a sarcastic smile as I know that John Paul Ralston was right and Diane Francis was wrong. We are always right as we listen to our hearts.
  Pertinent articles published by Ensign
  Voltaires Bastards The Dictatorship Of Reason, by John Ralston Saul. Review "Blind faith, creed of reason" by Farish A. Noor
  Doubters Companion: A Dictionary of Common Sense, by John Ralston Saul. Comments "A dictionary for dissenters" by Cris Reid, The Peak, Simon Fraser University's Student Newspaper, October 17, 1994
  The Unconscious Civilization, by John Ralston Saul. Excerpts from The Unconscious Civilization as annotated by Robert Bateman
  PM defends Saul's right to write about Bush, Islam (On Equilibrium), CBC Canada, December 14, 2001
  The incredible lightness of Ralston Saul (On Equilibrium), David Warren, National Post, December 17, 2001
  We should fire the GG profiteers. John Ralston Saul goes too far in criticizing Bush (On Equilibrium), Diane Francis, National Post, December 18, 2001
  Fortunate Son: George W. Bush and the Making of an American President, by Jim. H. Hatfield
  FORTUNATE SON, lyrics of the song by J.C. Fogerty. James deSantis has provided this information.