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 A Calamity of Heart


 A Calamity of Heart

E.L. Doctorow

This essay, commissioned by "America: Now and Here" curator Eric Fischl, will serve as the introduction to the portfolio of work by the artists participating in the project.


Thank you, Mr. Doctorow. The following excerpt is right on the mark, and for many thoughtful persons, 911 was hardly just an accident that fostered these outcomes:

“The fact is that some terrible deep damage to the nation was done in the aftermath of 9/11. The government that swung into action misdirected its response and, with devious arguments to the American people, took us to war. In short time it had adopted the policies of an authoritarian state. Americans found themselves the sponsors of torture, and of the endless imprisonment without trial or counsel of presumed terrorists; they learned well after the fact that they themselves were subject to secret illegal surveillance by their government, and they saw their Constitution disdained with the unilateral abrogation of international treaties such as the Geneva Convention, though such treaties are constitutionally “the supreme Law of the Land.” All these measures were claimed as wartime expedients and promoted with a propaganda of fear.”

Astrological analysis is an ancient art. Its importance is what it reveals in the way of cycles, and the periodic predictability of said cycles.

Open-minded readers may wish to check this article out:


" There is a lingering miasma of otherworldly weirdness hanging over this country, …" Yes, and it is worse now in 2015 than when Mr. Doctorow wrote this important piece in 2014.


The cognitive dissonance that has afflicted most of us since 9/11, three buildings in New York brought down by two planes commandeered by “terrorists” armed with box cutters led by some guy in a cave in Afghanistan… Any clear-eyed human being would be skeptical about that. Artists are particularly sensitive to pretexts for war. Their bullshit filters are always on. Thank you Mr. Doctorow.


What a fine piece! On such a rare high rhetorical level!


This Great author takes those 26 symbols we were made to memorize so long ago and makes music out of them- What A truly gifted writer that will be sorely missed-


“…something is firm and enduring after all in a country given to free imaginative expression that few cultures in the world can tolerate.” Really? And where is this happening, America? On cable? In movies? Publishing? Celebrity cocktail parties? I look and look for “American culture” and all I find is commercials and a range of Disneyesque trash. I live in America and I can’t tolerate it myself.


Take care in taking art for art
for more money more and more
directs our talent towards its ends.

There are plenty of hacks feeding their families
with images that promote corporate aims.
The best have great lawns.

While artists grow crazy and broke
protecting the future.