Softpanorama

Home Switchboard Unix Administration Red Hat TCP/IP Networks Neoliberalism Toxic Managers
May the source be with you, but remember the KISS principle ;-)
Skepticism and critical thinking is not panacea, but can help to understand the world better

In Foreign Events Coverage Guardian Presstitutes Slip Beyond the Reach of Embarrassment

Reporters without conscience: once a nominally left of centre liberal publication became firmly embedded part of the Foreign Office, MI6 and the US Department of State

Skepticism > Political Skeptic > Media-Military-Industrial Complex > Propaganda

News Neoliberal Brainwashing: Journalism in the Service of the Powerful Few Recommended Links Anti-Russian hysteria in connection emailgate and DNC leak US and British media are servants of security apparatus Do the foreign state influence the US Presidential elections ? Steele dossier
NeoMcCartyism Luke Harding a pathetic author of rehash of Steele Dossier book Russiagate -- a color revolution against Trump by neocons and DemoRats MSM Sochi Bashing Rampage Pussy Riot Provocation and Deranged Pussy Worship Syndrome Brexit as the start of the reversal of neoliberal globalization Who Shot down Malaysian flight MH17?
Hypocrisy of British elite Charlie Hebdo - more questions then answers Manchester attack vs Charlie Hebdo Media as a weapon of mass deception Putin-did-it fiasco Edward Lucas as agent provocateur American Exceptionalism
The importance of controlling the narrative Patterns of Propaganda The Real War on Reality Lewis Powell Memo Inside "democracy promotion" hypocrisy fair Co-opting of the Human Rights to embarrass governments who oppose neoliberalism Manipulation of the term "freedom of press"
Diplomacy by deception Democracy as a universal opener for access to natural resources Color revolutions Ukraine: From EuroMaidan to EuroAnschluss Media-Military-Industrial Complex Manufactured consent The Iron Law of Oligarchy
Neoliberalism as a New Form of Corporatism Neo-fascism Nation under attack meme Nineteen Eighty-Four Totalitarian Decisionism & Human Rights: The Re-emergence of Nazi Law Bullshit as MSM communication method Big Uncle is Watching You
Groupthink Soft propaganda Fighting Russophobia Elite [Dominance] Theory And the Revolt of the Elite Propaganda Quotes Humor Etc

Naturally the common people don't want war: Neither in Russia, nor in England, nor for that matter in Germany. That is understood. But, after all, it is the leaders of the country who determine the policy and it is always a simple matter to drag the people along, whether it is a democracy, or a fascist dictatorship, or a parliament, or a communist dictatorship. Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the peacemakers for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same in any country.

Hermann Goering, President of the Reichstag, Nazi Party, and Luftwaffe Commander in Chief

  • Lapdog is easy role, watchdog is hard.
  • Lapdogs are lazy but get fed, watchdogs stand out in the cold, and get kicked.
  • Lapdogs get rich, watchdogs remain poor.
  • Lapdogs eat shit, and watchdogs kick ass.
  • Lapdogs need many masters, watchdogs are their own master.
  • Lapdogs are part of the problem, watchdogs are part of the solution.

@RIP, lapdogs are dismissed even by the asses they kissed, while history remembers watchdogs for the asses they kicked.

Backbutton

10 October 2014 3:46pm

When Gerald Celente branded the American media “presstitutes,” he got it right. The US print and TV media (and NPR) whore for Washington and the corporations. Reporting the real news is their last concern. The presstitutes are a Ministry of Propaganda and Coverup. This is true of the entire Western media, a collection of bought-and-paid-for whores.

by Paul Craig Roberts, June 4, 2013,

A lot of our problems come from the unwillingness of honest people to call out the liars, cranks, wh*res and hacks.

A Brief Theory of Very Serious People — Crooked Timber

Due to the size an introduction was converted to a separate page Guardian as a neoliberal propaganda mouthpeace


Top Visited
Switchboard
Latest
Past week
Past month

NEWS CONTENTS

Old News ;-)

2017 2016 2015 2014 2013 2012

[Aug 20, 2019] Trumponomics on the march: Israeli and EU farmers say thank you to Trump .

Notable quotes:
"... "The sentiment out in farm country is getting grimmer by the day," said John Heisdorffer, the chairman of the American Soybean Association. "Our patience is waning, our finances are suffering and the stress from months of living with the consequences of these tariffs is mounting. ..."
"... The Republican senator Chuck Grassley, who represents Iowa, a state heavily reliant on agriculture, has called for a quick resolution to the dispute. "Americans understand the need to hold China accountable, but they also need to know that the administration understands the economic pain they would feel in a prolonged trade war," Grassley said in a statement. ..."
May 14, 2019 | www.theguardian.com

American farmers are likely to feel the pain first. Soybean exports to China collapsed last year when the trade war began, and agricultural exports will be hit harder when, or if, the new tariffs are imposed. Farmers are also suffering from extensive flooding that has delayed planting.

"The sentiment out in farm country is getting grimmer by the day," said John Heisdorffer, the chairman of the American Soybean Association. "Our patience is waning, our finances are suffering and the stress from months of living with the consequences of these tariffs is mounting."

The new round of tariffs will hit other parts of the US food industry, with beans, lentils, honey, flour, corn and oats all on the list of goods that will be taxed.

... ... ...

The Republican senator Chuck Grassley, who represents Iowa, a state heavily reliant on agriculture, has called for a quick resolution to the dispute. "Americans understand the need to hold China accountable, but they also need to know that the administration understands the economic pain they would feel in a prolonged trade war," Grassley said in a statement.

[Aug 18, 2019] It's unusual to have a neck fracture in prison suiside

Aug 18, 2019 | off-guardian.org

Francesca Judicial hangings were/are designed to snap the neck bones, causing death to come quickly .That is why the victims body weight, slackness of rope, height of drop are carefully calibrated .
Some judicial hangings don't end with a broken neck
Suicide hangings are one thing .if the suicide has the choice, they can leap or kick off from a height, and access a rope Even this does not always end in neck snapping and pretty instant death, but asphyxiation .People generally don't have the physics at their fingertips.
Jail suicides are another , and most often end in aspyxiation .There just isn't the height , or the ligature .

"Zhongxue Hua, the Bergen County medical examiner in New Jersey, said a neck fracture was atypical in a suicide but warned not to jump to conclusions.

"It's unusual to have a neck fracture," Hua said. "But the first question to address is when did it occur.

"If Epstein's neck fracture was fresh, Hua said, then "at a minimum, it's a very unusual suicide."

https://www.france24.com/en/20190816-usa-jeffrey-epstein-autopsy-neck-fractures-forensic-expert-suicide-sex-trafficking
I'd be very interested to view the autopsies of a decent number of jail suicides . I'd bet that broken neck bones don't show up very often .Unless of course there's an assistant who brings downward pressure on the body while its tight in its noose.

A broken neck is a quick death, strangulation or asphyxiation leaves tell tale signs such as blood shot eyes and burst capillaries

Even if this was the freakiest suicide, the "coincidences " surrounding it are not convincing for such a high profile prisoner

[Aug 18, 2019] The best way to get at some semblance of the truth is to follow the money. Epstein seems to have appeared virtually out of nowhere as a made man. Wexner appears to have gifted him a $56 million heavily bugged mansion. What does this tell us?

Aug 18, 2019 | off-guardian.org

mark It seems obvious that Epstein was murdered, but in reality this is just a side issue.
The MSM will happily carry on sending people down rabbit holes for ever, and ignoring the real questions.
They would like nothing more than to turn this into another JFK, where people speculate endlessly, generating more heat than light. Just what motivated Epstein? Money? Vice? Paedo sex? Spying and blackmailing for Israel? All of the above? Where did his loyalties lie? Was he just a hired hand, an intelligence operative, another Christopher Steele? Or was he more of a gun for hire, an Erik Prince, serving Mossad, the CIA, the Zionist Lobby, or whoever would pay him? Or was he more of his own boss, running his own organisation in his own interests? What about Ghislaine Maxwell? Was she just Epstein's pimp and loyal lieutenant, carrying out his orders? Or was she his Mossad handler, calling the shots, with Epstein as front man?

The best way to get at some semblance of the truth is to follow the money. Epstein seems to have appeared virtually out of nowhere as a made man. Wexner appears to have gifted him a $56 million heavily bugged mansion. What does this tell us?

Surprisingly, Maxwell has not gone to ground as expected. She made an exhibition of herself in LA a few days ago, ostentatiously eating a burger in public with a little dog in tow, reading a book about the CIA.

I think the stage is being set for an Oprah or Anderson Cooper style interview, presenting herself as the victim. Now that Epstein is dead, it will be in the interests of a lot of people to load everything on to his deceased shoulders. "I loved Jeffrey .but he was a monster ..he made me do terrible things ..I was frightened of him ..I'm a victim too."

This will probably be coordinated with a smear campaign against the victims, trying to dig up dirt about things like drugs, any criminal or mental health history, and any other issues.

One interesting detail to emerge from the search of Epstein's property is that he had a painting of Bill Clinton in drag, wearing a blue dress, like that of Monica Lewinsky, on his toilet wall. This is probably a case of gloating over the entrapment of Clinton. This somewhat grubby little episode occurred around the time of the Oslo peace deal, when Peres, Barak and Co. were under some pressure to negotiate seriously with the Palestinians, and facing criticism over settlements. Clinton was also under pressure from Zionist interests to release the Jewish/ Israeli spy Jonathan Pollard, imprisoned for treason/ espionage. This is reminiscent of the transvestite J. Edgar Hoover, who was being blackmailed by Meyer Lansky with photographs of him and Claude Tolson wearing dresses.

Dershowitz is another highly dubious character whose involvement warrants serious scrutiny. He previously defended OJ Simson and Spectre. He will probably spearhead a campaign to discredit the witnesses.

Fortunately, this can't be buried completely, even if Maxwell and others escape prosecution. There are a number of outstanding civil claims which will generate even more publicity than would otherwise be the case.

[Aug 18, 2019] Quigley's book ( Tragedy and hope), outlines how the transnational financiers and the elites hold the masses in utter contempt.

Aug 18, 2019 | off-guardian.org

John Deehan

Professors Antony C Sutton, Carol Quigley and Guido Preparata wrote some very insightful books demonstrating how so much of what is accepted as official history is false. Quigley's book ( Tragedy and hope), outlines how the transnational financiers and the elites hold the masses in utter contempt. Moreover, Sutton demonstrates the fabricated fight between left and right is a mere distraction to enable them to progress with their plans for humanity. Furthermore, Preparata illustrates in his book, Conjuring Hitler, the notion that masses opinions count for nothing with the elites and the puppet politicians in terms of foreign policy.

As Sutton's research discovered, the transnational financiers financed both Communism, Fascism and Nazism and came to some rather disturbing conclusions about their intentions.

Quigley summed it up " the powers of financial capitalism had a far- reaching aim nothing less than to create a world system of financial control in private hands able to dominate the political system of each country and the economy of the world as a whole.

This system was to be controlled in a feudalist fashion by the central banks of the world acting in concert, by secret agreements and conferences.

The apex of the system was to be the Bank for International Settlements (BIS) in Basel, Switzerland, a private bank owned and controlled by the world's central banks which were themselves private corporations Each central bank sought to dominate its government by its ability to control Treasury loans, to manipulate foreign exchanges, to influence the level of economic activity in the country, and to influence cooperative politicians by subsequent economic rewards in the business world." Tragedy and Hope.

[Aug 18, 2019] Leaked FBI interview of one of the guards.

Aug 18, 2019 | off-guardian.org

Badger Down

Comparing Epstein with Jacob Rubenstein's murder of Lee Harvey Oswald is sheer antisemitism.
Tim Jenkins
Chuckle, still no mention of the Brothers Awan, so if we're gonna' indulge in distraction @TheZBlog . . .

Leaked FBI interview of one of the guards.

FBI: Where were you when you discovered Epstein was dead?

Guard #1: I was in his cell.

FBI: Before that. Before you knew he was dead.

Guard #1: I was in his cell strangling him.

FBI: I see. How about you, where were you?

Guard #2: I was making sure the camera was off.

FBI: Are you sure it was off?

Guard #2: Oh yeah, it was unplugged.

FBI: OK, well, I think we need to work on this story a bit more, but otherwise, good job fellas.

[Aug 18, 2019] The debate over whether Jeffrey Epstein committed suicide or not is a pseudo-debate meant to keep people spinning their wheels over nothing

Death thus becomes a reward of escape from truth, consequences and responsibility; a blind defiance set against honesty and justice.
Aug 18, 2019 | off-guardian.org

It attracts attention and will do so for many days to come. There are even some usually astute people suggesting that he may not be dead but might have been secretly whisked off somewhere and replaced with a dead look-alike.

Now, who would profit from suggesting something as insane as this?

The speculation runs rampant and feeds the spectacle. Whether he was allowed to kill himself or was killed makes little difference.

It's akin to asking who pulled the trigger that killed President Kennedy. That's a debate that was intended to go nowhere, as it has, after it became apparent that Lee Harvey Oswald surely did not kill JFK. John Kennedy's murder in broad daylight in public view is the paradigmatic event of modern times. It is obvious to anyone that gives minimal study to the issue that it was organized and carried out by elements within the national security state, notably the CIA.

Their message was meant to be unequivocal and clear: We can kill him and we can kill you; we are in full control; beware. Then they went on to kill others, including RFK and MLK. It takes little intelligence to see this obvious fact, unless you wish not to or are totally lost in the neighborhood of make-believe.

As it was with Jack Ruby killing Lee Harvey Oswald, so it is with Epstein. There will be no trial. Nothing is really hidden except the essential truth. Guess, debate, wonder, watch, read to your sad heart's content. You will have gotten nowhere unless you step outside the frame of the reigning narrative.


nottheonly1

Those of us who oppose these criminals – and there are growing numbers all over the world – must avoid being sucked into the establishment narratives and the counter-narratives they spawn or create. We must refuse to get involved in pseudo-debates that are meant to lead nowhere. We must reject the language created to confuse.

To arrive at this conclusion is an attest of the deepest truth a mind can grasp. If I could only talk to someone as astute as You. This is not flattery, but the mere realization, that there is nobody in my surroundings that possesses Your ability to make such a point.

That there are now so few people that can have this insight is the result of the absence of philosophy from our lives. It is philosophy who opens the mind and therefore it had to be removed from society. People are well advised to look into it, to overcome this barrage of fabricated narratives.

Tim Hall
We have little or no true understanding to the degree that propaganda has been scientifically applied (estimated number engaged on this insidious activity 50,000 in 1991, under the all powerful Tavistock Institute) over 73 years to brainwashing and misdirecting the populations perception of reality – your article reflects this fact. CIA, Deep State et al are simply agents of a far bigger entity who's accumulated power and reach, built up assiduously over centuries, has now reached an unassailable level of control over the world which it intends to effectively own.

I suggest all readers refer to the following link to appreciate the futility of humanity's current position in regard to it's ability to resist the coming onslaught to its survival.

https://www.cia.gov/library/abbottabad-compound/4A/4A92FD2FB4DAE3F773DB0B7742CF0F65_Coleman.-.CONSPIRATORS.HIERARCHY.-.THE.STORY.OF.THE.COMMITTEE.OF.300.R.pdf

Edward, this sentiment is laudable, but they hold such a grip on mass psychological control that such sentiments represent chaff on the wind.

If revolutionary change is to come, we must learn to tell a new story in language so beautiful, illuminating, and heart-rending that no one will listen to the lying words of child molesters, mass murderers, and those who hate and persecute truth-tellers.

mark
In Britain, the post mortem, by a Home Office pathologist, would establish the physical cause of death.
Sometimes this is delayed in waiting for toxicology results.
Probably "Suspension" (Hanging.)
Any separate injuries or existing medical conditions would be noted in the post mortem report.

In the absence of any police criminal investigation, it would then be for a Coroner's Inquest, almost certainly sitting with a jury, to give a verdict.

Suicide, accidental death, misadventure, unlawful killing, open verdict.

It is for the Coroner's Court to examine the evidence and arrive at a verdict.
If there is doubt or uncertainty, there is the option of an Open Verdict.
Hanging could lead to a verdict of accident or misadventure in certain circumstances.
There was a case where a group of youths saw that someone had left a noose hanging from a tree in a park. One of them, larking around, put his head in the noose and accidentally hanged himself.

The US system seems to short circuit the decision making process of the Coroner's Court.
This appears to be no more than an opinion by the medical examiner, sometimes misleadingly referred to as the Coroner.
There seems to be no equivalent to the Coroner's Court.

William H Booby
He killed himself and the proof is the BBC said it, anyone who disagrees wears a tinfoil hat

[Aug 16, 2019] One of the ways the Deep State undermines conspiracy theories is to plant evidence purporting to support the theory, but easily disproved by easily available information

Notable quotes:
"... Even more importantly, we should all be troubled by efforts to shut down content and discussions labeled "false and misleading" on major social media platforms . ..."
"... Conspiracies can be found out by many different ways e.g. documents uncovered, discrepancies, evidence that contradicts what has been claimed etc. ..."
"... "A two decade old CT, like 9/11, or worse, one six decades old (the JFK assassination), are false because they would have involved too many people–someone would have blown the whistle, if only on their deathbed." ..."
"... "If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it. The lie can be maintained only for such time as the State can shield the people from the political, economic and/or military consequences of the lie. ..."
"... The old adage 'two men can keep a secret, if one of them is dead' applies here. ..."
"... This co-ordinated and global media attack on the 'Conspiracy Theorist' is co-ordinated and Global for good reason. ..."
"... The determination of international deepstate to make illegal any question or recognition of it under guise of 'Conspiracy theorist=domestic terrorist/anti-semite/anti-Zionist/BDS/trump supporting white supremacist(etc)'- conflating those ULTRA memes with growing awareness of the Anglo/Yankee/zionist PSYOPS underway globally, mean we are entering a choke point in progression of reason, truth and beauty. ..."
"... The danger of the conspiracy theorist to the present world order, is that most of the BIG ones, the nasty ones, are true. And CIA operation Mockingbirds' job (Quote) 'is to Guard against the illicit Transformation of Probability into Certainty," that they are . ..."
"... Ultimately, the average conspiracy theorist has a better grasp of how the world works than the average liberal. ..."
"... The reality is that the ruling class and its public servants really do have a parasitic and predatory relationship to the vast majority of humanity ..."
"... I like Michael Moore's response when asked if he believed the conspiracy theories which were floating about at the time: "Just the ones that are true" ..."
"... A conspiracy theory, like any theory is as strong as the evidence put forward to support it. ..."
"... One of the ways they will do this is to plant "evidence" purporting to support the theory, but easily disproved by easily available information. Unfortunately,it is a sad fact that far too many "conspiracy theorists" readily accept and share along with genuine evidence, this planted "evidence" to the wider internet, thereby undermining the solid evidence of a conspiracy, by associating it with the easily disprovable nonsense. ..."
"... For example, after the attack on the WTC Kissinger was appointed to the head the 9/11 commission (before stepping down). ..."
"... 'Conspiracy theorists' would have thought – why are neocons appointing a mass-murdering neocon to investigate an event that might have involved neocons (raising obvious credibility issues) – whereas those who regard conspiracy theorists as dribbling fruitcakes would have welcomed the appointment of the nobel peace prize winner. ..."
OffGuardian

Noam Chomsky has pointed out , the more educated we are, the more we are a target for state-corporate propaganda. Even journalists outside the mainstream may internalize establishment values and prejudices. Which brings us to Parramore's embrace of the term "conspiracy theory." Once a neutral and little-used phrase, "conspiracy theory" was infamously weaponized in 1967 by a memo from the CIA to its station chiefs worldwide.

Troubled by growing mass disbelief in the "lone nut" theory of President Kennedy's assassination, and concerned that "[c]onspiracy theories have frequently thrown suspicion on our organization," the agency directed its officers to "discuss the publicity problem with friendly and elite contacts (especially politicians and editors)" and to "employ propaganda assets to answer and refute the attacks of the critics. Book reviews and feature articles are particularly appropriate for this purpose."

As Kevin Ryan writes , and various analyses have shown :

In the 45 years before the CIA memo came out, the phrase 'conspiracy theory' appeared in the Washington Post and New York Times only 50 times, or about once per year. In the 45 years after the CIA memo, the phrase appeared 2,630 times, or about once per week."
While it turns out that Parramore knows something about this hugely successful propaganda drive, she chose in her NBC piece to deploy the phrase as the government has come to define it, i.e., as "something that requires no consideration because it is obviously not true." This embeds a fallacy in her argument which only spreads as she goes on. Likewise, the authors of the studies she cites, who attempt to connect belief in "conspiracy theories" to "narcissistic personality traits," are not immune to efforts to manipulate the wider culture. Studies are only as good as the assumptions from which they proceed; in this case, the assumption was provided by an interested Federal agency. And what of their suggested diagnosis?

The DSM-5's criteria for narcissism include "a pervasive pattern of grandiosity a need for admiration and lack of empathy." My experience in talking to writers and advocates who -- to mention a few of the subjects Parramore cites -- seek justice in the cases of the political murders of the Sixties , have profound concerns about vaccine safety , or reject the official conspiracy theory of 9/11 , does not align with that characterization.

On the contrary, most of the people I know who hold these varied (and not always shared) views are deeply empathic, courageously humble, and resigned to a life on the margins of official discourse, even as they doggedly seek to publicize what they have learned. A number of them have arrived at their views through painful, direct experience, like the loss of a friend or the illness of a child, but far from having a "negative view of humanity," as Parramore writes, most hold a deep and abiding faith in the power of regular people to see injustice and peacefully oppose it. In that regard, they share a great deal in common with writers like Parramore: ultimately, we all want what's best for our children, and none of us want a world ruled by unaccountable political-economic interests. If we want to achieve that world, then we should work together to promote speech that is free from personal attacks on all sides. Even more importantly, we should all be troubled by efforts to shut down content and discussions labeled "false and misleading" on major social media platforms.

Who will decide what is false and what is true? ... ... ...

President Kennedy said:

a nation that is afraid to let its people judge the truth and falsehood in an open market is a nation that is afraid of its people."
Perhaps we should take a closer look at ideas that so frighten the powers-that-be. Far from inviting our ridicule, the people who insist that we look in these forbidden places may one day deserve our thanks.
John Kirby is a documentary filmmaker. His latest project, Four Died Trying, examines what John Kennedy, Malcolm X, Martin Luther King and Robert Kennedy were doing in the last years of their lives which may have led to their deaths.

George
I am responding to an earlier comment you made because, for some reason, I cannot reply to it in the proper place.

"The old adage 'two men can keep a secret, if one of them is dead' applies here."

Wrong: secrets can be uncovered even if both of them are dead.

"The conspiracies we know about are exposed because someone talks, or a computer gets hacked."

Conspiracies can be found out by many different ways e.g. documents uncovered, discrepancies, evidence that contradicts what has been claimed etc.

"A two decade old CT, like 9/11, or worse, one six decades old (the JFK assassination), are false because they would have involved too many people–someone would have blown the whistle, if only on their deathbed."

Always a bad sign when you start to repeat "would have". Lots of presumption here.

"No new facts have emerged because the only people who knew anything are long dead, taking the reasons to their graves .."

New facts can emerge all the time even regarding the most ancient of events.

" .or in the case of 9/11, because there was no great conspiracy, beyond the one reported."

So you now have godlike omniscience?

"A propensity for subscribing to conspiracy theories, is, sad to say, indicative of mental inadequacy "

There's no point in going much further here. You now devolve into psychobabble which, as always, is based on the dogmatic assertion that you are right. (cf. the formerly mentioned godlike omniscience)

Ragnar
"If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it. The lie can be maintained only for such time as the State can shield the people from the political, economic and/or military consequences of the lie.

It thus becomes vitally important for the State to use all of its powers to repress dissent, for the truth is the mortal enemy of the lie, and thus by extension, the truth is the greatest enemy of the State." These words are attributed to Joseph Goebbels.

-So, George, it would hardly make a difference whether the State is Marxist or Capitalist. It's either power or truth. They are inherently different and can not be reconciled. Ultimately, there is no bridge possible.

However, so-called "common" goals are of a lower order and cooperation here is possible, temporarily. These relationships are unstable and prone to breaking up precisely because they're ultimately not common at all. The principle are different and the personalities too. Ships Passing In The Night, like. -See?

George
We all have common goals. Basically the goals of life and health. And these are hardly goals "of a lower order". If that was true then we must be living in a state of "postmodernist relativity" where anyone can decide arbitrarily what matters. And that would certainly lead to your ships-passing-in-the-night scenario i.e. the ultimate divide-and-rule vision.

As for power, the late Marxist writer Ellen Meiksins Wood noted that, in modern times, we have an unprecedented degree of political freedom. But the reason for that is that power no longer lies in politics. It lies in economics. What is the point of having formal rights when your livelihood is gone?

William HBonney

The old adage 'two men can keep a secret, if one of them is dead' applies here.

The conspiracies we know about are exposed because someone talks, or a computer gets hacked. A two decade old CT, like 9/11, or worse, one six decades old (the JFK assassination), are false because they would have involved too many people – someone would have blown the whistle, if only on their deathbed. No new facts have emerged because the only people who knew anything are long dead, taking the reasons to their graves, or in the case of 9/11, because there was no great conspiracy, beyond the one reported.

A propensity for subscribing to conspiracy theories, is, sad to say, indicative of mental inadequacy. Such people are unable to deal with the complexities of the world as it is, and therefore seek to make it a world of black and white, good and evil, heroes and villains. The internet, with its blurring of fantasy and fact enables them. This is why discussions like this get so polarised.

TFS

1. 9/11 and JFK are false because WILLIAM HBonney has declared it so.

Boom, thanks for watching kids.

2. In other news, some Conspiracy Theorists Imagined 747-E4Bs above Washington at the time of 9/11 and 25+second delay introduced into the Air Traffic Control System but the Official Conspiracy Account of 9/11 didn't discuss it because there was nothing to see.

3. In related news, HWB wack jobs go on one

https://www.lewrockwell.com/2019/07/no_author/new-york-fire-commissioners-call-for-new-9-11-investigation-about-pre-planted-explosives/

4. Corbett, goes off on one: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HXYswf3lzU8

5. And again, Corbett goes even more mental. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mWLis-TVB2w

6. But it's ok kidz, because HWB wack jobs, like first responders, police, fire personnel architects, physicists, former military personnel, pilots, Nobel Peace Prixe winners, medical experts, etc etc all collectively asertained that the Official Conspiracy Theory of 9/11 is about as usefull as the Warren Commission Report.

7. HOWEVER, HWB THINKS YOU'RE A WACK JOB.

r. rebar
unless & until someone goes to jail -- there are no conspiracies & as silence is -- like any commodity -- only as good as the price paid to maintain it -- those who know have a real vested interest in not talking (it's not a secret if you tell someone)
roger morris
Ms Parramore is doing nothing more than her profession and tenure demands. Witting or un-witting. This co-ordinated and global media attack on the 'Conspiracy Theorist' is co-ordinated and Global for good reason.

It is the 'Great Wurlitzer' at full throat coinciding with extraordinary reductions in internet freedoms of information flow. The determination of international deepstate to make illegal any question or recognition of it under guise of 'Conspiracy theorist=domestic terrorist/anti-semite/anti-Zionist/BDS/trump supporting white supremacist(etc)'- conflating those ULTRA memes with growing awareness of the Anglo/Yankee/zionist PSYOPS underway globally, mean we are entering a choke point in progression of reason, truth and beauty.

A read of the Cass Sunstein/Cornelius Adrian Comstock Vermeule Paper describing 'Conspiracy theory' as a 'crippled Epistemology' and determining 'COINTELPRO' type strategies to counter the danger of their truth becoming certainty, will enlighten those in the dark of IIO methodology and expose Ms Parramore as a true MOCKINGBIRD.

The danger of the conspiracy theorist to the present world order, is that most of the BIG ones, the nasty ones, are true. And CIA operation Mockingbirds' job (Quote) 'is to Guard against the illicit Transformation of Probability into Certainty," that they are .

mathias alexand
Try this for conspiracy thinking

https://lorenzoae.wordpress.com/2016/05/31/part-2/

George
Good link. I like this bit:

"Ultimately, the average conspiracy theorist has a better grasp of how the world works than the average liberal. Even the most outlandish "conspiracy theory" in existence -- that people like George W. Bush and Queen Elizabeth are shape-shifting, extra-dimensional reptilians -- is closer to the truth than what liberals believe.

The reality is that the ruling class and its public servants really do have a parasitic and predatory relationship to the vast majority of humanity "

I've often felt there is a lot of (metaphorical!) truth in David Icke's ravings, although the reptile image is unfortunate in that actual reptiles are amongst the most sedate and peaceful creatures.

Molloy
Eichmann and today's useful idiots; Hannah Arendt

(start Arendt quote)

Despite all the efforts of the prosecution, everybody could see that this man was not a "monster," but it was difficult indeed not to suspect that he was a clown. And since this suspicion would have been fatal to the whole enterprise, and was also rather hard to sustain, in view of the sufferings he and his like had caused so many millions of people, his worst clowneries were hardly noticed. What could you do with a man who first declared, with great emphasis, that the one thing he had learned in an ill-spent life was that one should never take an oath ("Today no man, no judge could ever persuade me to make a sworn statement. I refuse it; I refuse it for moral reasons. Since my experience tells me that if one is loyal to his oath, one day he has to take the consequences, I have made up my mind once and for all that no judge in the world or other authority will ever be capable of making me swear an oath, to give sworn testimony.

I won't do it voluntarily and no one will be able to force me"), and then, after being told explicitly that if he wished to testify in his own defense he might "do so under oath or without an oath," declared without further ado that he would prefer to testify under oath? Or who, repeatedly and with a great show of feeling, assured the court, as he had assured the police examiner, that the worst thing he could do would be to try to escape his true responsibilities, to fight for his neck, to plead for mercy -- and then, upon instruction of his counsel, submitted a handwritten document that contained a plea for mercy?

As far as Eichmann was concerned, these were questions of changing moods, not of inconsistencies, and as long as he was capable of finding, either in his memory or on the spur of the moment, an elating stock phrase to go with them, he was quite content.
(end quote)

https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/1963/02/16/eichmann-in-jerusalem-i

Molloy
Chomsky dealing with the indoctrinated. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lLcpcytUnWU&app=desktop Why it is important to call out the so-called 'Global Elite' facilitators on here.

And why it is essential to understand what Eichmann was facilitating (and the madness that morphed into the same apartheid bigotry in the 21st century).

Better understand than be hanged.

Gary Weglarz

I appreciate the article, but the sentence below is offered with no logical or rational support – it is simply an evidence free assertion:

("But Parramore and many journalists like her are neither assets of an intelligence service nor unthinking tools of big media; ) – really?

It is quite clear that if someone "is" (an asset of an intelligence service) that they will certainly not be broadcasting this fact to the world or to friends and family. And for someone to assert that "conspiracies" don't exist in the real world requires a level of credulity that most intelligent and rational people the least bit familiar with the historical record would find rather difficult to muster up. I dare say it would be much easier in fact to prove the assertion that our Western history is simply the "history of conspiracies" given the oligarchic control of Western populations for millennia. This is hardly "rocket science" as they say. We do have a rather well documented historical record to fall back on to show the endless scheming of Western oligarchy behind the backs of Western populations.

wardropper
I like Michael Moore's response when asked if he believed the conspiracy theories which were floating about at the time: "Just the ones that are true"
John Thatcher
A conspiracy theory, like any theory is as strong as the evidence put forward to support it. Often people offer as fact conspiracies that only as yet exist as theories,with greater or lesser amounts of evidence to support.I have no doubt that interested parties who are the accused in these theories, will mount efforts to discredit any theory mounted against them or those they represent.

One of the ways they will do this is to plant "evidence" purporting to support the theory, but easily disproved by easily available information. Unfortunately,it is a sad fact that far too many "conspiracy theorists" readily accept and share along with genuine evidence, this planted "evidence" to the wider internet, thereby undermining the solid evidence of a conspiracy, by associating it with the easily disprovable nonsense.

Harry Stotle

Isn't it high time we had a term to describe those who always accept the official version of events after controversial political incidents no matter how implausible this account might be?

For example, after the attack on the WTC Kissinger was appointed to the head the 9/11 commission (before stepping down).

'Conspiracy theorists' would have thought – why are neocons appointing a mass-murdering neocon to investigate an event that might have involved neocons (raising obvious credibility issues) – whereas those who regard conspiracy theorists as dribbling fruitcakes would have welcomed the appointment of the nobel peace prize winner.

Anyway, here's a clip of Henry – the believers in everything the government say would never have considered the objections raised in the film – such questions are tantamount to mental illness according to these 'progressives'.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/YcxjJDlbnC4?version=3&rel=1&fs=1&autohide=2&showsearch=0&showinfo=1&iv_load_policy=1&wmode=transparent

[Aug 16, 2019] Easily one of the best, well researched online resources for 9/11

Aug 16, 2019 | off-guardian.org

Mucho

Easily one of the best, well researched online resources for 9/11 is http://www.bollyn.com

Christopher Bollyn's work is crucial as it is mainly focused on the who was behind the attacks, rather than endless investigations into the physics of the event. Physics is an important part of the 9/11 puzzle, but the players involved are of far more importance.

Here is one of his presentations, condensing some of his work into a seminar:

Christopher Bollyn DC 9/11/2017 "The War on Terror among Truth Seekers"

https://www.youtube.com/embed/PuOsiMVlMBw?version=3&rel=1&fs=1&autohide=2&showsearch=0&showinfo=1&iv_load_policy=1&wmode=transparent

[Aug 16, 2019] Ministry of truth materialized in XXI century in a neoliberal way by Kit Knightly

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... Latest is the secretive Andy Pryce squandering millions of public money on the "Open Information Partnership" (OIP) which is the latest name-change for the Integrity Initiative and the Institute of Statecraft, just like al-Qaeda kept changing its name. ..."
"... In true Orwellian style, they splashed out on a conference for "defence of media freedom", when they are in the business of propaganda and closing alternative 'narratives' down. And the 'media' they would defend are, in fact, spies sent to foreign countries to foment trouble to further what they bizarrely perceive as 'British interests'. Just like the disgraceful White Helmets, also funded by the FO. ..."
"... "The Guardian is struggling for money" Surely, they would be enjoying some of the seemingly unlimited US defense and some of the mind control programmes budgets. ..."
Aug 16, 2019 | off-guardian.org

OffGuardian already covered the Global Media Freedom Conference, our article Hypocrisy Taints UK's Media Freedom Conference , was meant to be all there was to say. A quick note on the obvious hypocrisy of this event. But, in the writing, I started to see more than that. This event is actually creepy. Let's just look back at one of the four "main themes" of this conference:

Building trust in media and countering disinformation
"Countering disinformation"? Well, that's just another word for censorship. This is proven by their refusal to allow Sputnik or RT accreditation. They claim RT "spreads disinformation" and they "countered" that by barring them from attending. "Building trust"? In the post-Blair world of PR newspeak, "building trust" is just another way of saying "making people believe us" (the word usage is actually interesting, building trust not earning trust). The whole conference is shot through with this language that just feels off. Here is CNN's Christiane Amanpour :
Our job is to be truthful, not neutral we need to take a stand for the truth, and never to create a false moral or factual equivalence."
Being "truthful not neutral" is one of Amanpour's personal sayings , she obviously thinks it's clever. Of course, what it is is NewSpeak for "bias". Refusing to cover evidence of The White Helmets staging rescues, Israel arming ISIS or other inconvenient facts will be defended using this phrase – they will literally claim to only publish "the truth", to get around impartiality and then set about making up whatever "truth" is convenient. Oh, and if you don't know what "creating a false moral quivalence is", here I'll demonstrate: MSM: Putin is bad for shutting down critical media. OffG: But you're supporting RT being banned and Wikileaks being shut down. BBC: No. That's not the same. OffG: It seems the same. BBC: It's not. You're creating a false moral equivalence . Understand now? You "create a false moral equivalence" by pointing out mainstream media's double standards. Other ways you could mistakenly create a "false moral equivalence": Bringing up Gaza when the media talk about racism. Mentioning Saudi Arabia when the media preach about gay rights. Referencing the US coup in Venezuela when the media work themselves into a froth over Russia's "interference in our democracy" Talking about the invasion of Iraq. Ever. OR Pointing out that the BBC is state funded, just like RT. These are all no-longer flagrant examples of the media's double standards, and if you say they are , you're "creating a false moral equivalence" and the media won't have to allow you (or anyone who agrees with you) air time or column inches to disagree. Because they don't have a duty to be neutral or show both sides, they only have a duty to tell "the truth" as soon as the government has told them what that is. Prepare to see both those phrases – or variations there of – littering editorials in the Guardian and the Huffington Post in the coming months. Along with people bemoaning how "fake news outlets abuse the notion of impartiality" by "being even handed between liars the truth tellers". (I've been doing this site so long now, I have a Guardian-English dictionary in my head).

Equally dodgy-sounding buzz-phrases litter topics on the agenda. "Eastern Europe and Central Asia: building an integrated support system for journalists facing hostile environments" , this means pumping money into NGOs to fund media that will criticize our "enemies" in areas of strategic importance. It means flooding money into the anti-government press in Hungary, or Iran or (of course), Russia. That is ALL it means. I said in my earlier article I don't know what "media sustainability" even means, but I feel I can take a guess. It means "save the government mouthpieces". The Guardian is struggling for money, all print media are, TV news is getting lower viewing figures all the time. "Building media sustainability" is code for "pumping public money into traditional media that props up the government" or maybe "getting people to like our propaganda". But the worst offender on the list is, without a doubt "Navigating Disinformation"

https://www.youtube.com/embed/1vbSj1WQqUw?version=3&rel=1&fs=1&autohide=2&showsearch=0&showinfo=1&iv_load_policy=1&wmode=transparent

"Navigating Disinformation" was a 1 hour panel from the second day of the conference. You can watch it embedded above if you really feel the need. I already did, so you don't have to. The panel was chaired by Chrystia Freeland, the Canadian Foreign Minister. The members included the Latvian Foreign Minister, a representative of the US NGO Committee to Protect Journalists, and the Ukrainian Deputy Minister of Information

Have you guessed what "disinformation" they're going to be talking about? I'll give you a clue: It begins with R. Freeland, chairing the panel, kicks it off by claiming that "disinformation isn't for any particular aim" . This is a very common thing for establishment voices to repeat these days, which makes it all the more galling she seems to be pretending its is her original thought. The reason they have to claim that "disinformation" doesn't have a "specific aim" is very simple: They don't know what they're going to call "disinformation" yet. They can't afford to take a firm position, they need to keep their options open. They need to give themselves the ability to describe any single piece of information or political opinion as "disinformation." Left or right. Foreign or domestic. "Disinformation" is a weaponised term that is only as potent as it is vague. So, we're one minute in, and all "navigating disinformation" has done is hand the State an excuse to ignore, or even criminalise, practically anything it wants to. Good start. Interestingly, no one has actually said the word "Russia" at this point. They have talked about "malign actors" and "threats to democracy", but not specifically Russia. It is SO ingrained in these people that "propaganda"= " Russian propaganda" that they don't need to say it.

The idea that NATO as an entity, or the individual members thereof, could also use "disinformation" has not just been dismissed it was literally never even contemplated. Next Freeland turns to Edgars Rinkēvičs, her Latvian colleague, and jokes about always meeting at NATO functions. The Latvians know "more than most" about disinformation, she says. Rinkēvičs says disinformation is nothing new, but that the methods of spreading it are changing then immediately calls for regulation of social media. Nobody disagrees. Then he talks about the "illegal annexation of Crimea", and claims the West should outlaw "paid propaganda" like RT and Sputnik. Nobody disagrees. Then he says that Latvia "protected" their elections from "interference" by "close cooperation between government agencies and social media companies". Everyone nods along. If you don't find this terrifying, you're not paying attention. They don't say it, they probably don't even realise they mean it, but when they talk about "close cooperation with social media networks", they mean government censorship of social media. When they say "protecting" their elections they're talking about rigging them. It only gets worse. The next step in the Latvian master plan is to bolster "traditional media".

The problems with traditional media, he says, are that journalists aren't paid enough, and don't keep up to date with all the "new tricks". His solution is to "promote financing" for traditional media, and to open more schools like the "Baltic Centre of Media Excellence", which is apparently a totally real thing .

It's a training centre which teaches young journalists about "media literacy" and "critical thinking". You can read their depressingly predictable list of "donors" here . I truly wish I was joking. Next up is Courtney Radsch from CPJ – a US-backed NGO, who notionally "protect journalists", but more accurately spread pro-US propaganda. (Their token effort to "defend" RT and Sputnik when they were barred from the conference was contemptible).

She talks for a long time without saying much at all. Her revolutionary idea is that disinformation could be countered if everyone told the truth. Inspiring. Beata Balogova, Journalist and Editor from Slovakia, gets the ship back on course – immediately suggesting politicians should not endorse "propaganda" platforms. She shares an anecdote about "a prominent Slovakian politician" who gave exclusive interviews to a site that is "dubiously financed, we assume from Russia". They assume from Russia. Everyone nods.

It's like they don't even hear themselves.

Then she moves on to Hungary. Apparently, Orban has "created a propaganda machine" and produced "antisemitic George Soros posters". No evidence is produced to back-up either of these claims. She thinks advertisers should be pressured into not giving money to "fake news sites". She calls for "international pressure", but never explains exactly what that means. The stand-out maniac on this panel is Emine Dzhaparova, the Ukrainian First Deputy Minister of Information Policy. (She works for the Ministry of Information – nicknamed the Ministry of Truth, which was formed in 2014 to "counter lies about Ukraine". Even The Guardian thought that sounded dodgy.)

She talks very fast and, without any sense of irony, spills out a story that shoots straight through "disinformation" and becomes "incoherent rambling". She claims that Russian citizens are so brainwashed you'll never be able to talk to them, and that Russian "cognitive influence" is "toxic like radiation." Is this paranoid, quasi-xenophobic nonsense countered? No. Her fellow panelists nod and chuckle. On top of that, she just lies. She lies over and over and over again. She claims Russia is locking up Crimean Tartars "just for being muslims", nobody questions her. She says the war in Ukraine has killed 13,000 people, but doesn't mention that her side is responsible for over 80% of civilian deaths.

She says only 30% of Crimeans voted in the referendum, and that they were "forced". A fact not supported by any polls done by either side in the last four years, and any referenda held on the peninsula any time in the last last 30 year. It's simply a lie. Nobody asks her about the journalists killed in Ukraine since their glorious Maidan Revolution . Nobody questions the fact that she works for something called the "Ministry of Information". Nobody does anything but nod and smile as the "countering disinformation" panel becomes just a platform for spreading total lies.

When everyone on the panel has had their ten minutes on the soapbox, Freeland asks for recommendations for countering this "threat" – here's the list:

  1. Work to distinguish "free speech" from "propaganda", when you find propaganda there must be a "strong reaction".
  2. Pressure advertisers to abandon platforms who spread misinformation.
  3. Regulate social media.
  4. Educate journalists at special schools.
  5. Start up a "Ministry of Information" and have state run media that isn't controlled, like in Ukraine.

This is the Global Conference on Media Freedom and all these six people want to talk about is how to control what can be said, and who can say it. They single only four countries out for criticism: Hungary, Nicaragua, Venezuela and Russia .and Russia takes up easily 90% of that. They mention only two media outlets by name: RT and Sputnik. This wasn't a panel on disinformation, it was a public attack forum – a month's worth of 2 minutes of hate. These aren't just shills on this stage, they are solid gold idiots, brainwashed to the point of total delusion.

They are the dangerous glassy eyes of a Deep State that never questions itself, never examines itself, and will do anything it wants, to anyone it wants whilst happily patting itself on the back for its superior morality. They don't know, they don't care. They're true believers. Terrifyingly dead inside. Talking about state censorship and re-education camps under a big sign that says "Freedom". And that's just one talk. Just one panel in a 2 day itinerary filled to the brim with similarly soul-dead servants of authority. Truly, perfectly Orwellian.


Jonathan Jarvis

https://southfront.org/countering-russian-disinformation-or-new-wave-of-freedom-of-speech-suppression/

Read and be appalled at what America is up to .keep for further reference. We are in danger.

Tim Jenkins
It would serve Ms. Amanpour well, to relax, rewind & review her own interview with Sergei Lavrov:-

Then she might see why Larry King could stomach the appalling corporate dictatorship, even to the core of False & Fake recording of 'our' "History of the National Security State" , No More

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8H7aKGOpSwE

Amanpour was forced to laugh uncontrollably, when confronted with Lavrov's humorous interpretations of various legal aspects of decency & his Judgement of others' politicians and 'Pussy Riots' >>> if you haven't seen it, it is to be recommended, the whole interview, if nothing else but to study the body language and micro-facial expressions, coz' a belly up laugh is not something anybody can easily control or even feign that first spark of cognition in her mind, as she digests Lavrov's response :- hilarious

Einstein
A GE won't solve matters since we have a Government of Occupation behind a parliament of puppets.

Latest is the secretive Andy Pryce squandering millions of public money on the "Open Information Partnership" (OIP) which is the latest name-change for the Integrity Initiative and the Institute of Statecraft, just like al-Qaeda kept changing its name.

In true Orwellian style, they splashed out on a conference for "defence of media freedom", when they are in the business of propaganda and closing alternative 'narratives' down. And the 'media' they would defend are, in fact, spies sent to foreign countries to foment trouble to further what they bizarrely perceive as 'British interests'. Just like the disgraceful White Helmets, also funded by the FO.

Pryce's ventriloquist's dummy in parliament, the pompous Alan Duncan, announced another £10 million of public money for this odious brainwashing programme.

Tim Jenkins
That panel should be nailed & plastered over, permanently:-

and as wall paper, 'Abstracts of New Law' should be pasted onto a collage of historic extracts from the Guardian, in offices that issue journalistic licenses, comprised of 'Untouchables' :-

A professional habitat, to damp any further 'Freeland' amplification & resonance,

of negative energy from professional incompetence.

Francis Lee
Apropos of the redoubtable Ms Freeland, Canada's Foreign Secretary.

The records now being opened by the Polish government in Warsaw reveal that Freeland's maternal grandfather Michael (Mikhailo) Chomiak was a Nazi collaborator from the beginning to the end of the war. He was given a powerful post, money, home and car by the German Army in Cracow, then the capital of the German administration of the Galician region. His principal job was editor in chief and publisher of a newspaper the Nazis created. His printing plant and other assets had been stolen from a Jewish newspaper publisher, who was then sent to die in the Belzec concentration camp. During the German Army's winning phase of the war, Chomiak celebrated in print the Wehrmacht's "success" at killing thousands of US Army troops. As the German Army was forced into retreat by the Soviet counter-offensive, Chomiak was taken by the Germans to Vienna, where he continued to publish his Nazi propaganda, at the same time informing for the Germans on other Ukrainians. They included fellow Galician Stepan Bandera, whose racism against Russians Freeland has celebrated in print, and whom the current regime in Kiev has turned into a national hero.

Those Ukrainian 'Refugees' admitted to Canada in 1945 were almost certainly members of the 14th Waffen SS Division Galizia 1. These Ukie collaboraters – not to be confused with the other Ukie Nazi outfit – Stepan Bandera's Ukrainian Insurgent Army -were held responsible for the massacre of many Poles in the Lviv area the most infamous being carried out in the Polish village of Huta Pienacka. In the massacre, the village was destroyed and between 500] and 1,000 of the inhabitants were killed. According to Polish accounts, civilians were locked in barns that were set on fire while those attempting to flee were killed. That's about par for the course.
Canada's response was as follows:

The Canadian Deschκnes Commission was set up to investigate alleged war crimes committed by the collaborators

Memorial to SS-Galizien division in Chervone, Lviv Oblast, western Ukraine

The Canadian "Commission of Inquiry on War Crimes" of October 1986, by the Honourable Justice Jules Deschκnesconcluded that in relation to membership in the Galicia Division:

''The Galicia Division (14. Waffen grenadier division der SS [gal.1]) should not be indicted as a group. The members of Galicia Division were individually screened for security purposes before admission to Canada. Charges of war crimes of Galicia Division have never been substantiated, either in 1950 when they were first preferred, or in 1984 when they were renewed, or before this Commission. Further, in the absence of evidence of participation or knowledge of specific war crimes, mere membership in the Galicia Division is insufficient to justify prosecution.''

However, the Commission's conclusion failed to acknowledge or heed the International Military Tribunal's verdict at the Nuremberg Trials, in which the entire Waffen-SSorganisation was declared a "criminal organization" guilty of war crimes. Also, the Deschκnes Commission in its conclusion only referenced the division as 14. Waffen-Grenadier-Division der SS (Galizische Nr.1), thus in legal terms, only acknowledging the formation's activity after its name change in August 1944, while the massacre of Poles in Huta Pieniacka, Pidkamin and Palikrowy occurred when the division was called SS Freiwilligen Division "Galizien". Nevertheless, a subsequent review by Canada's Minister of Justice again confirmed that members of the Division were not implicated in war crimes.

Yes, the west looks after its Nazis and even makes them and their descendants political figureheads.

mark
Most of these people are so smugly and complacently convinced of their own moral superiority that they just can't see the hypocrisy and doublethink involved in the event.
Mikalina
Eva Bartlett gives a wider perspective:
https://www.globalresearch.ca/londons-media-freedom-conference-smacks-irony-critics-barred-no-mention-jailed-assange/5683808
Harry Stotle
Freedom-lover, Cunt, will be furious when he hears about this!

Apparently Steve Bell is doubleplusbad for alluding to the fact Netanyahu has got his hand shoved deep into Tom Watson's arse – the Guardian pulled Bell's most recent ouvre which suggests the media's antisemitism trope might not be quite as politically untainted as the likes of Freedland, Cohen and Viner would have you believe.
https://www.thejc.com/news/uk-news/guardian-cartoonist-steve-bell-specious-charge-of-antisemitism-in-email-to-all-paper-1.486570

Meanwhile Owen Jones has taken to Twitter to rubbish allegations that a reign of terror exists at Guardian Towers – the socialist firebrand is quoted as saying 'journalists are free to say whatever they like, so long as it doesn't stray too far from Guardian-groupthink'.

Tutisicecream
Good analysis Kit, of the cognitive dissonant ping pong being played out by Nazi sympathisers such as Hunt and Freeland.

The echo chamber of deceit is amplified again by the selective use of information and the ignoring of relevant facts, such as the miss reporting yesterday by Reuters of the Italian Neo-Nazi haul of weapons by the police, having not Russian but Ukrainian links.

Not a word in the WMSM about this devious miss-reporting as the creation of fake news in action. But what would you expect?

Living as I do in Russia I can assure anyone reading this that the media freedom here is on a par with the West and somewhat better as there is no paranoia about a fictitious enemy – Russians understand that the West is going through an existential crisis (Brexit in the UK, Trump and the Clinton war of sameness in the US and Macron and Merkel in the EU). A crisis of Liberalism as the failed life-support of capitalism. But hey, why worry about the politics when there is bigger fish to fry. Such as who will pay me to dance?

The answer is clear from what Kit has writ. The government will pay the piper. How sweet.

I'd like to thank Kit for sitting through such a turgid masquerade and as I'm rather long in the tooth I do remember the old BBC schools of journalism in Yelsin's Russia. What I remember is that old devious Auntie Beeb was busy training would be hopefuls in the art of discretion regarding how the news is formed, or formulated.

In other words your audience. And it ain't the public

Steve Hayes
The British government's "Online Harms" White Paper has a whole section devoted to "disinformation" (ie, any facts, opinions, analyses, evaluations, critiques that are critical of the elite's actual disinformation). If these proposals become law, the government will have effective control over the Internet and we will be allowed access to their disinformation, shop and watch cute cat videos.
Question This
The liberal news media & hypocrisy, who would have ever thought you'd see those words in the same sentence. But what do you expect from professional liars, politicians & 'their' free press?

Can this shit show get any worse? Yes, The other day I wrote to my MP regards the SNP legislating against the truth, effectively making it compulsory to lie! Mr Blackford as much as called me a transphobic & seemed to go to great length publishing his neo-liberal ideological views in some scottish rag, on how right is wrong & fact is turned into fiction & asked only those that agreed with him contact him.

Tim Jenkins
"The science or logical consistency of true premise, cannot take place or bear fruit, when all communication and information is 'marketised and weaponised' to a mindset of possession and control." B.Steere
Mikalina
I saw, somewhere (but can't find it now) a law or a prospective law which goes under the guise of harassment of MPs to include action against constituents who 'pester' them.

I've found a link for the Jo Cox gang discussing it, though.
https://www.kcl.ac.uk/news/new-research-on-the-intimidation-and-harassment-of-mps-featured-in-inaugural-conference

Question This
I only emailed him once! That's hardly harassment. Anyway I sent it with proton-mail via vpn & used a false postcode using only my first name so unlikely my civil & sincere correspondence will see me locked up for insisting my inalienable rights of freedom of speech & beliefs are protected. But there again the state we live in, i may well be incarcerated for life, for such an outrageous expectation.
Where to?
"The Guardian is struggling for money" Surely, they would be enjoying some of the seemingly unlimited US defense and some of the mind control programmes budgets.
Harry Stotle
Its the brazen nature of the conference that is especially galling, but what do you expect when crooks and liars no longer feel they even have to pretend?

Nothing will change so long as politicians (or their shady backers) are never held to account for public assets diverted toward a rapacious off-shore economic system, or the fact millions of lives have been shattered by the 'war on terror' and its evil twin, 'humanatarian regime change' (while disingenuous Labour MPs wail about the 'horrors' of antisemitism rather than the fact their former leader is a key architect of the killings).

Kit remains a go-to voice when deconstructing claims made by political figures who clearly regard the MSM as a propaganda vehicle for promoting western imperialism – the self-satisfied smugness of cunts like Jeremy Cunt stand in stark contrast to a real journalist being tortured by the British authorities just a few short miles away.

It's a sligtly depressing thought but somebody has the unenviable task of monitoring just how far our politicians have drifted from the everyday concerns of the 'just about managing' and as I say Mr Knightly does a fine job in informing readers what the real of agenda of these media love-ins are actually about – it goes without saying a very lengthy barge pole is required when the Saudis are invited but not Russia.

Where to?
This Media Freedom Conference is surely a creepy theatre of the absurd.

It is a test of what they can get away with.

Mikalina
Yep. Any soviet TV watcher would recognise this immediately. Message? THIS is the reality – and you are powerless.
mark
When are they going to give us the Ministry of Truth we so desperately need?

[Aug 16, 2019] Lapdogs for the Government and intelligence agencies by Greg Maybury

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... We know our disinformation program is complete when almost everything the American public believes is false.' ..."
"... Using groundbreaking camera and lighting techniques, Riefenstahl produced a documentary that mesmerized Germans; as Pilger noted, her Triumph of the Will 'cast Adolf Hitler's spell'. She told the veteran Aussie journalist the "messages" of her films were dependent not on "orders from above", but on the "submissive void" of the public. ..."
"... All in all, Riefenstahl produced arguably for the rest of the world the most compelling historical footage of mass hysteria, blind obedience, nationalistic fervour, and existential menace, all key ingredients in anyone's totalitarian nightmare. That it also impressed a lot of very powerful, high profile people in the West on both sides of the pond is also axiomatic: These included bankers, financiers, industrialists, and sundry business elites without whose support Hitler might've at best ended up a footnote in the historical record after the ill-fated beer-hall putsch. (See here , and here .) ..."
"... The purpose of this propaganda barrage, as Sharon Bader has noted, has been to convince as many people as possible that it is in their interests to relinquish their own power as workers, consumers, and citizens, and 'forego their democratic right to restrain and regulate business activity. As a result the political agenda is now confined to policies aimed at furthering business interests.' ..."
Aug 16, 2019 | off-guardian.org

Lapdogs for the Government

Here was, of course, another surreal spectacle, this time courtesy of one of the Deep State's most dangerous, reviled, and divisive figures, a notable protagonist in the Russia-Gate conspiracy, and America's most senior diplomat no less.

Not only is it difficult to accept that the former CIA Director actually believes what he is saying, well might we ask, "Who can believe Mike Pompeo?"

And here's also someone whose manifest cynicism, hypocrisy, and chutzpah would embarrass the much-derided scribes and Pharisees of Biblical days.

We have Pompeo on record recently in a rare moment of honesty admitting – whilst laughing his ample ass off, as if recalling some "Boy's Own Adventure" from his misspent youth with a bunch of his mates down at the local pub – that under his watch as CIA Director:

We lied, cheated, we stole we had entire training courses.'

It may have been one of the few times in his wretched existence that Pompeo didn't speak with a forked tongue.

At all events, his candour aside, we can assume safely that this reactionary, monomaniacal, Christian Zionist 'end-timer' passed all the Company's "training courses" with flying colours.

According to Matthew Rosenberg of the New York Times, all this did not stop Pompeo however from name-checking Wikileaks when it served his own interests. Back in 2016 at the height of the election campaign, he had ' no compunction about pointing people toward emails stolen* by Russian hackers from the Democratic National Committee and then posted by WikiLeaks."

[NOTE: Rosenberg's omission of the word "allegedly" -- as in "emails allegedly stolen" -- is a dead giveaway of bias on his part (a journalistic Freudian slip perhaps?), with his employer being one of those MSM marques leading the charge with the "Russian Collusion" 'story'. For a more insightful view of the source of these emails and the skullduggery and thuggery that attended Russia-Gate, readers are encouraged to check this out.]

And this is of course The Company we're talking about, whose past and present relationship with the media might be summed up in two words: Operation Mockingbird (OpMock). Anyone vaguely familiar with the well-documented Grand Deception that was OpMock, arguably the CIA's most enduring, insidious, and successful psy-ops gambit, will know what we're talking about. (See here , here , here , and here .) At its most basic, this operation was all about propaganda and censorship, usually operating in tandem to ensure all the bases are covered.

After opining that the MSM is 'totally infiltrated' by the CIA and various other agencies, for his part former NSA whistleblower William Binney recently added , ' When it comes to national security, the media only talk about what the administration wants you to hear, and basically suppress any other statements about what's going on that the administration does not want get public. The media is basically the lapdogs for the government.'

Even the redoubtable William Casey , Ronald Reagan's CIA Director back in the day was reported to have said something along the following lines:

We know our disinformation program is complete when almost everything the American public believes is false.'

In order to provide a broader and deeper perspective, we should now consider the views of a few others on the subjects at hand, along with some history. In a 2013 piece musing on the modern significance of the practice, my compatriot John Pilger ecalled a time when he met Leni Riefenstahl back in 70s and asked her about her films that 'glorified the Nazis'.

Using groundbreaking camera and lighting techniques, Riefenstahl produced a documentary that mesmerized Germans; as Pilger noted, her Triumph of the Will 'cast Adolf Hitler's spell'. She told the veteran Aussie journalist the "messages" of her films were dependent not on "orders from above", but on the "submissive void" of the public.

All in all, Riefenstahl produced arguably for the rest of the world the most compelling historical footage of mass hysteria, blind obedience, nationalistic fervour, and existential menace, all key ingredients in anyone's totalitarian nightmare. That it also impressed a lot of very powerful, high profile people in the West on both sides of the pond is also axiomatic: These included bankers, financiers, industrialists, and sundry business elites without whose support Hitler might've at best ended up a footnote in the historical record after the ill-fated beer-hall putsch. (See here , and here .)

" Triumph " apparently still resonates today. To the surprise of few one imagines, such was the impact of the film -- as casually revealed in the excellent 2018 Alexis Bloom documentary Divide and Conquer: The Story of Roger Ailes -- it elicited no small amount of admiration from arguably the single most influential propagandist of recent times.

[Readers might wish to check out Russell Crowe's recent portrayal of Ailes in Stan's mini-series The Loudest Voice , in my view one the best performances of the man's career.]

In a recent piece unambiguously titled "Propaganda Is The Root Of All Our Problems", my other compatriot Caitlin Johnstone also had a few things to say about the subject, echoing Orwell when she observed it was all about "controlling the narrative".

Though I'd suggest the greater "root" problem is our easy propensity to ignore this reality, pretend it doesn't or won't affect us, or reject it as conspiratorial nonsense, in this, of course, she's correct. As she cogently observes,

I write about this stuff for a living, and even I don't have the time or energy to write about every single narrative control tool that the US-centralised empire has been implementing into its arsenal. There are too damn many of them emerging too damn fast, because they're just that damn crucial for maintaining existing power structures.'

The Discreet Use of Censorship and Uniformed Men

It is hardly surprising that those who hold power should seek to control the words and language people use' said Canadian author John Ralston Saul in his 1993 book Voltaire's Bastards–the Dictatorship of Reason in the West .

Fittingly, in a discussion encompassing amongst other things history, language, power, and dissent, he opined, ' Determining how individuals communicate is' an objective which represents for the power elites 'the best chance' [they] have to control what people think. This translates as: The more control 'we' have over what the proles think, the more 'we' can reduce the inherent risk for elites in democracy.

' Clumsy men', Saul went on to say, 'try to do this through power and fear. Heavy-handed men running heavy-handed systems attempt the same thing through police-enforced censorship. The more sophisticated the elites, the more they concentrate on creating intellectual systems which control expression through the communications structures. These systems require only the discreet use of censorship and uniformed men.'

In other words, along with assuming it is their right to take it in the first place, ' those who take power will always try to change the established language ', presumably to better facilitate their hold on it and/or legitimise their claim to it.

For Oliver Boyd-Barrett, democratic theory presupposes a public communications infrastructure that facilitates the free and open exchange of ideas.' Yet for the author of the recently published RussiaGate and Propaganda: Disinformation in the Age of Social Media , 'No such infrastructure exists.'

The mainstream media he says, is 'owned and controlled by a small number of large, multi-media and multi-industrial conglomerates' that lie at the very heart of US oligopoly capitalism and much of whose advertising revenue and content is furnished from other conglomerates:

The inability of mainstream media to sustain an information environment that can encompass histories, perspectives and vocabularies that are free of the shackles of US plutocratic self-regard is also well documented.'

Of course the word "inability" suggests the MSM view themselves as having some responsibility for maintaining such an egalitarian news and information environment. They don't of course, and in truth, probably never really have! A better word would be "unwilling", or even "refusal". The corporate media all but epitomise the " plutocratic self-regard" that is characteristic of "oligopoly capitalism".

Indeed, the MSM collectively functions as advertising, public relations/lobbying entities for Big Corp, in addition to acting as its Praetorian bodyguard , protecting their secrets, crimes, and lies from exposure. Like all other companies they are beholden to their shareholders (profits before truth and people), most of whom it can safely be assumed are no strangers to "self-regard", and could care less about " histories, perspectives and vocabularies" that run counter to their own interests.

It was Aussie social scientist Alex Carey who pioneered the study of nationalism , corporatism , and moreso for our purposes herein, the management (read: manipulation) of public opinion, though all three have important links (a story for another time). For Carey, the following conclusion was inescapable: 'It is arguable that the success of business propaganda in persuading us, for so long, that we are free from propaganda is one of the most significant propaganda achievements of the twentieth century.' This former farmer from Western Australia became one of the world's acknowledged experts on propaganda and the manipulation of the truth.

Prior to embarking on his academic career, Carey was a successful sheep grazier . By all accounts, he was a first-class judge of the animal from which he made his early living, leaving one to ponder if this expertise gave him a unique insight into his main area of research!

In any event, Carey in time sold the farm and travelled to the U.K. to study psychology, apparently a long-time ambition. From the late fifties until his death in 1988, he was a senior lecturer in psychology and industrial relations at the Sydney-based University of New South Wales, with his research being lauded by such luminaries as Noam Chomsky and John Pilger, both of whom have had a thing or three to say over the years about The Big Shill. In fact such was his admiration, Pilger described him as "a second Orwell", which in anyone's lingo is a big call.

Carey unfortunately died in 1988, interestingly the year that his more famous contemporaries Edward Herman and Chomsky's book Manufacturing Consent: The Political Economy of the Mass Media was published, the authors notably dedicating their book to him.

Though much of his work remained unpublished at the time of his death, a book of Carey's essays – Taking the Risk Out of Democracy: Corporate Propaganda Versus Freedom and Liberty -- was published posthumously in 1997. It remains a seminal work.

In fact, for anyone with an interest in how public opinion is moulded and our perceptions are managed and manipulated, in whose interests they are done so and to what end, it is as essential reading as any of the work of other more famous names. This tome came complete with a foreword by Chomsky, so enamoured was the latter of Carey's work.

For Carey, the three "most significant developments" in the political economy of the twentieth century were: the growth of democracy the growth of corporate power; and the growth of propaganda as a means of protecting corporate power against democracy.

Carey's main focus was on the following: advertising and publicity devoted to the creation of artificial wants; the public relations and propaganda industry whose principal goal is the diversion to meaningless pursuits and control of the public mind; and the degree to which academia and the professions are under assault from private power determined to narrow the spectrum of thinkable (sic) thought.

For Carey, it is an axiom of conventional wisdom that the use of propaganda as a means of social and ideological control is 'distinctive' of totalitarian regimes. Yet as he stresses: the most minimal exercise of common sense would suggest a different view: that propaganda is likely to play at least as important a part in democratic societies (where the existing distribution of power and privilege is vulnerable to quite limited changes in popular opinion) as in authoritarian societies (where it is not).' In this context, 'conventional wisdom" becomes conventional ignorance; as for "common sense", maybe not so much.

The purpose of this propaganda barrage, as Sharon Bader has noted, has been to convince as many people as possible that it is in their interests to relinquish their own power as workers, consumers, and citizens, and 'forego their democratic right to restrain and regulate business activity. As a result the political agenda is now confined to policies aimed at furthering business interests.'

An extreme example of this view playing itself right under our noses and over decades was the cruel fiction of the " trickle down effect " (TDE) -- aka the 'rising tide that would lift all yachts' -- of Reaganomics . One of several mantras that defined Reagan's overarching political shtick, the TDE was by any measure, decidedly more a torrent than a trickle, and said "torrent" was going up not down. This reality as we now know was not in Reagan's glossy economic brochure to be sure, and it may have been because the Gipper confused his prepositions and verbs.

Yet as the GFC of 2008 amply demonstrated, it culminated in a free-for all, dog eat dog, anything goes, everyman for himself form of cannibal (or anarcho) capitalism -- an updated, much improved version of the no-holds-barred mercenary mercantilism much reminiscent of the Gilded Age and the Robber Barons who 'infested' it, only one that doesn't just eat its young, it eats itself!

Making the World Safe for Plutocracy

In the increasingly dysfunctional, one-sided political economy we inhabit then, whether it's widgets or wars or anything in between, few people realise the degree to which our opinions, perceptions, emotions, and views are shaped and manipulated by propaganda (and its similarly 'evil twin' censorship ,) its most adept practitioners, and those elite, institutional, political, and corporate entities that seek out their expertise.

It is now just over a hundred years since the practice of propaganda took a giant leap forward, then in the service of persuading palpably reluctant Americans that the war raging in Europe at the time was their war as well.

This was at a time when Americans had just voted their then-president Woodrow Wilson back into office for a second term, a victory largely achieved on the back of the promise he'd "keep us out of the War." Americans were very much in what was one of their most isolationist phases , and so Wilson's promise resonated with them.

But over time they were convinced of the need to become involved by a distinctly different appeal to their political sensibilities. This "appeal" also dampened the isolationist mood, one which it has to be said was not embraced by most of the political, banking, and business elites of the time, most of whom stood to lose big-time if the Germans won, and/or who were already profiting or benefitting from the business of war.

For a president who "kept us out of the war", this wasn't going to be an easy 'pitch'. In order to sell the war the president established the Committee on Public Information (aka the Creel Committee) for the purposes of publicising the rationale for the war and from there, garnering support for it from the general public.

Enter Edward Bernays , the nephew of Sigmund Freud, who's generally considered to be the father of modern public relations. In his film Rule from the Shadows: The Psychology of Power , Aaron Hawkins says Bernays was influenced by people such as Gustave le Bon , Walter Lippman , and Wilfred Trotter , as much, if not moreso, than his famous uncle.

Either way, Bernays 'combined their perspectives and synthesised them into an applied science', which he then 'branded' "public relations".

For its part the Creel committee struggled with its brief from the off; but Bernays worked with them to persuade Americans their involvement in the war was justified -- indeed necessary -- and to that end he devised the brilliantly inane slogan, "making the world safe for democracy" .

Thus was born arguably the first great propaganda catch-phrases of the modern era, and certainly one of the most portentous. The following sums up Bernays's unabashed mindset:

The conscious, intelligent manipulation of the organised habits and opinions of the masses is an important element in democratic society. Those who manipulate this unseen mechanism of society constitute an invisible government which is the true ruling power of our country.'

The rest is history (sort of), with Americans becoming more willing to not just support the war effort but encouraged to view the Germans and their allies as evil brutes threatening democracy and freedom and the 'American way of life', however that might've been viewed then. From a geopolitical and historical perspective, it was an asinine premise of course, but nonetheless an extraordinary example of how a few well chosen words tapped into the collective psyche of a country that was decidedly opposed to any U.S involvement in the war and turned that mindset completely on its head.

' [S]aving the world for democracy' (or some 'cover version' thereof) has since become America's positioning statement, 'patriotic' rallying cry, and the "Get-out-of-Jail Free" card for its war and its white collar criminal clique.

At all events it was by any measure, a stroke of genius on Bernays's part; by appealing to people's basic fears and desires, he could engineer consent on a mass scale. It goes without saying it changed the course of history in more ways than one. That the U.S. is to this day still using a not dissimilar meme to justify its "foreign entanglements" is testament to both its utility and durability.

The reality as we now know was markedly different of course. They have almost always been about power, empire, control, hegemony, resources, wealth, opportunity, profit, dispossession, keeping existing capitalist structures intact and well-defended, and crushing dissent and opposition.

The Bewildered Herd

It is instructive to note that the template for 'manufacturing consent' for war had already been forged by the British. And the Europeans did not 'sleepwalk' like some " bewildered herd ' into this conflagration.

For twenty years prior to the outbreak of the war in 1914, the then stewards of the British Empire had been diligently preparing the ground for what they viewed as a preordained clash with their rivals for empire the Germans.

To begin with, contrary to the opinion of the general populace over one hundred years later, it was not the much touted German aggression and militarism, nor their undoubted imperial ambitions, which precipitated its outbreak. The stewards of the British Empire were not about to let the Teutonic upstarts chow down on their imperial lunch as it were, and set about unilaterally and preemptively crushing Germany and with it any ambitions it had for creating its own imperial domain in competition with the Empire upon which Ol' Sol never set.

The "Great War" is worth noting here for other reasons. As documented so by Jim Macgregor and Gerry Docherty in their two books covering the period from 1890-1920, we learn much about propaganda, which attest to its extraordinary power, in particular its power to distort reality en masse in enduring and subversive ways.

In reality, the only thing "great" about World War One was the degree to which the masses fighting for Britain were conned via propaganda and censorship into believing this war was necessary, and the way the official narrative of the war was sustained for posterity via the very same means. "Great" maybe, but not in a good way!

In these seminal tomes -- World War One Hidden History: The Secret Origins of the First World War and its follow-up Prolonging the Agony: How the Anglo-American Establishment Deliberately Extended WWI by Three-And-A-Half Years -- Macgregor and Docherty provide a masterclass for us all of the power of propaganda in the service of firstly inciting, then deliberately sustaining a major war.

The horrendous carnage and destruction that resulted from it was of course unprecedented, the global effects of which linger on now well over one hundred years later.

Such was the enduring power of the propaganda that today most folks would have great difficulty in accepting the following; this is a short summary of historical realities revealed by Macgregor and Docherty that are at complete odds with the official narrative, the political discourse, and the school textbooks:

It was Great Britain (supported by France and Russia) and not Germany who was the principal aggressor in the events and actions that let to the outbreak of war; The British had for twenty years prior to 1914 viewed Germany as its most dangerous economic and imperial rival, and fully anticipated that a war was inevitable; In the U.K. and the U.S., various factions worked feverishly to ensure the war went on for as long as possible, and scuttled peacemaking efforts from the off; key truths about this most consequential of geopolitical conflicts have been concealed for well over one hundred years, with no sign the official record will change; very powerful forces (incl. a future US president) amongst U.S. political, media, and economic elites conspired to eventually convince an otherwise unwilling populace in America that U.S. entry onto the war was necessary; those same forces and many similar groups in the U.K. and Europe engaged in everything from war profiteering, destruction/forging of war records, false-flag ops, treason, conspiracy to wage aggressive war, and direct efforts to prolong the war by any means necessary, many of which will rock folks to their very core.

But peace was not on the agenda. When, by 1916, the military failures were so embarrassing and costly, some key players in the British government were willing to talk about peace. This could not be tolerated. The potential peacemakers had to be thrown under the bus. The unelected European leaders had one common bond: They would fight Germany until she was crushed.

Prolonging the Agony details how this secret cabal organised to this end the change of government without a single vote being cast. David Lloyd George was promoted to prime minister in Britain and Georges Clemenceau made prime minister in France. A new government, an inner-elite war cabinet thrust the Secret Elite leader, Lord Alfred Milner into power at the very inner-core of the decision-makers in British politics.

Democracy? They had no truck with democracy. The voting public had no say. The men entrusted with the task would keep going till the end and their place-men were backed by the media and the money-power, in Britain, France and America.

Propaganda Always Wins

But just as the pioneering adherents of propaganda back in the day might never have dreamt how sophisticated and all-encompassing the practice would become, nor would the citizenry at large have anticipated the extent to which the industry has facilitated an entrenched, rapacious plutocracy at the expense of our economic opportunity, our financial and material security, our physical, social and cultural environment, our values and attitudes, and increasingly, our basic democratic rights and freedoms.

We now live in the Age of the Big Shill -- cocooned in a submissive void no less -- an era where nothing can be taken on face value yet where time and attention constraints (to name just a few) force us to do so; [where] few people in public life can be taken at their word; where unchallenged perceptions become accepted reality; where 'open-book' history is now incontrovertible not-negotiable, upon pain of imprisonment fact; where education is about uniformity, function, form and conformity, all in the service of imposed neo-liberal ideologies embracing then prioritising individual -- albeit dubious -- freedoms.

More broadly, it's the "Roger Ailes" of this world -- acting on behalf of the power elites who after all are their paymasters -- who create the intellectual systems which control expression through the communications structures, whilst ensuring these systems require only 'the discreet use of censorship and uniformed men.'

They are the shapers and moulders of the discourse that passes for the accepted lingua franca of the increasingly globalised, interconnected, corporatised political economy of the planet. Throughout this process they 'will always try to change the established language.'

And we can no longer rely on our elected representatives to honestly represent us and our interests. Whether this decision making is taking place inside or outside the legislative process, these processes are well and truly in the grip of the banks and financial institutions and transnational organisations. In whose interests are they going to be more concerned with?

We saw this all just after the Global Financial Crisis (GFC) when the very people who brought the system to the brink, made billions off the dodge for their banks and millions for themselves, bankrupted hundreds of thousands of American families, were called upon by the U.S. government to fix up the mess, and to all intents given a blank cheque to so do.

That the U.S. is at even greater risk now of economic implosion is something few serious pundits would dispute, and a testament to the effectiveness of the snow-job perpetrated upon Americans regarding the causes, the impact, and the implications of the 2008 meltdown going forward.

In most cases, one accepts almost by definition such disconnects (read: hidden agendas) are the rule rather than the exception, hence the multi-billion foundation -- and global reach and impact -- of the propaganda business. This in itself is a key indicator as to why organisations place so much importance on this aspect of managing their affairs.

At the very least, once corporations saw how the psychology of persuasion could be leveraged to manipulate consumers and politicians saw the same with the citizenry and even its own workers, the growth of the industry was assured.

As Riefenstahl noted during her chinwag with Pilger after he asked if those embracing the "submissive void" included the liberal, educated bourgeoisie? " Everyone ," she said.

By way of underscoring her point, she added enigmatically: 'Propaganda always wins if you allow it'.

Greg Maybury is a freelance writer based in Perth, Australia. His main areas of interest are American history and politics in general, with a special focus on economic, national security, military, and geopolitical affairs. For 5 years he has regularly contributed to a diverse range of news and opinion sites, including OpEd News, The Greanville Post, Consortium News, Dandelion Salad, Global Research, Dissident Voice, OffGuardian, Contra Corner, International Policy Digest, the Hampton Institute, and others.


nottheonly1

This brilliant essay is proof of the reflective nature of the Universe. The worse the propaganda and oppression becomes, the greater the likelihood such an essay will be written.

Such is the sophistication and ubiquity of the narrative control techniques used today -- afforded increasingly by 'computational propaganda' via automated scripts, hacking, botnets, troll farms, and algorithms and the like, along with the barely veiled censorship and information gatekeeping practised by Google and Facebook and other tech behemoths -- it's become one of the most troubling aspects of the technological/social media revolution.

Very rarely can one experience such a degree of vindication. My moniker 'nottheonly1' has received more meaning with this precise depiction of the long history of the manipulation of the masses. Recent events have destroyed but all of my confidence that there might be a peaceful way out of this massive dilemma. Due to this sophistication in controlling the narrative, it has now become apparent that we have arrived at a moment in time where total lawlessness reigns. 'Lawlessness' in this case means the loss of common law and the use of code law to create ever new restrictions for free speech and liberty at large.

Over the last weeks, comments written on other discussion boards have unleashed a degree of character defamation and ridicule for the most obvious crimes perpetrated on the masses through propaganda. In this unholy union of constant propaganda via main stream 'media' with the character defamation by so called 'trolls' – which are actually virtual assassins of those who write the truth – the ability of the population, or parts thereof to connect with, or search for like minded people is utterly destroyed. This assault on the online community has devastating consequences. Those who have come into the cross hairs of the unintelligence agencies will but turn away from the internet. Leaving behind an ocean of online propaganda and fake information. Few are now the web sites on which it is possible to voice one's personal take on the status quo.

There is one word that describes these kind of activities precisely: traitor. Those who engage in the character defamation of commenters, or authors per se, are traitors to humanity. They betray the collective consciousness with their poisonous attacks of those who work for a sea change of the status quo. The owner class has all game pieces positioned. The fact that Julian Assange is not only a free man, but still without a Nobel price for peace, while war criminals are recipients, shows just how much the march into absolute totalitarianism has progressed. Bernays hated the masses and offered his 'services' to manipulate them often for free.

Even though there are more solutions than problems, the time has come where meaningful participation in the search for such solution has been made unbearable. It is therefore that a certain fatalism has developed – from resignation to the acceptance of the status quo as being inevitable. Ancient wisdom has created a proverb that states 'This too, will pass'. While that is a given, there are still enough Human Beings around that are determined to make a difference. To this group I count the author of this marvelous, albeit depressing essay. Thank you more that words can express. And thank you, OffGuardian for being one of the last remaining places where discourse is possible.

GMW
Really great post! Thanks. I'm part of the way through reading Alex Carey's book: "Taking the Risk Out of Democracy: Corporate Propaganda Versus Freedom and Liberty," referenced in this article. I've learned more about the obviously verifiable history of U.S. corporate propaganda in the first four chapters than I learned gaining a "minor" in history in 1974 (not surprisingly I can now clearly see). I highly recommend this book to anyone interested in just how pervasive, entrenched and long-standing are the propaganda systems shaping public perception, thought and behavior in America and the West.
Norcal
Wow Greg Maybury great essay, congratulations. This quote is brilliant, I've never see it before, "For Carey, the following conclusion was inescapable: 'It is arguable that the success of business propaganda in persuading us, for so long, that we are free from propaganda is one of the most significant propaganda achievements of the twentieth century.' "

Too, Rodger Ailes was the man credited with educating Nixon up as how to "use" the TV media, and Ailes never looked back as he manipulated media at will. Thank you!

nondimenticare
That is also one of the basic theses of Harold Pinter's Nobel Prize speech.
vexarb
I read in 'Guns, Germs and Steel' about Homo Sapiens and his domesticated animals. Apparently we got on best in places where we could find animals that are very like us: sheep, cattle, horses and other herd animals which instinctively follow their Leader. I think our cousins the chimpanzee are much the same; both species must have inherited this common trait from some pre-chimpanzee ancestor who had found great survival value in passing on the sheeple trait to their progeny. As have the sheep themselves.

By the way, has anybody observed sheeple behaviour in ants and bees? For instance, quietly following a Leader ant to their doom, or noisily ganging up to mob a worker bee that the Queen does not like?

Andy
Almost unbelievable that this was commisioned by the BBC 4 part series covering much of what is in Gregs essay. Some fabulous old footage too. https://topdocumentaryfilms.com/the-century-of-the-self/
S.R.Passerby
I'd say the elites are both for and against. Competing factions. It's clear that many are interested in overturning democracy, whilst others want to exploit it.

The average grunt on the street is in the fire, regardless of the pan chosen by the elites.

[Aug 16, 2019] On the superior quality of US propaganda

Aug 16, 2019 | off-guardian.org

The story goes like this: sometime during the height of the Cold War a group of American journalists were hosting a visit to the U.S. of some of their Soviet counterparts.

After allowing their visitors some time to soak up the media zeitgeist stateside, most of the Americans expected their guests to express unbridled envy at the professional liberties they enjoyed in the Land of the Free Press.

One of the Russian scribes was indeed compelled to express his unabashed 'admiration' to his hosts in particular, for the "far superior quality" of American "propaganda". Now it's fair to say his hosts were taken aback by what was at best a backhanded compliment.

After some collegial 'piss-taking' about the stereotypes associated with Western "press freedom" versus those of the controlled media in the Soviet system, one of the Americans called on their Russian colleague to explain what he meant. In fractured English, he replied with the following:

It's very simple. In Soviet Union, we don't believe our propaganda. In America, you actually believe yours!"

[Aug 15, 2019] Kit Knightly at OffGuardian has a great commentary on how the Guardian is shaping its coverage of this Epstein situation, particularly in regard to all us conjecturing types:

Aug 15, 2019 | www.nakedcapitalism.com

Baby Gerald , August 15, 2019 at 4:46 pm

Kit Knightly at OffGuardian has a great commentary on how the Guardian is shaping its coverage of this Epstein situation, particularly in regard to all us conjecturing types:

Guardian Attacks Epstein "Conspiracy Theories"

It's a pretty scathing take-down and a fun read.

todde , August 15, 2019 at 6:25 pm

from the article:

which totally ignores a cardinal rule when dealing with state agencies: They will only admit to incompetence if the truth is worse.

LOL. Mirrors what I said earlier.

true, so very true.

[Aug 14, 2019] Charge of anti-Semitism as a sign of a bitter factional struggle in UK Labor Party between neoliberal and alternatives to neoliberalism wings

Highly recommended!
It attests inventiveness and vicious amorality of neoliberals, who now promote the idea that criticizing neoliberalism and removing Democratic party in the USA and Labor Party in the UK from clutches of Clintonism//Brairism is inherently Anti-Semitic ;-)
Israel lobby wants to extent the anti-Semitism smear to any critique of Israel. which is of course standard dirty trick in witch hunts like neo-McCarthyism.
Notable quotes:
"... This, of course, is compounded by the over-amplifying of anti-Semitism by the media and the alacrity with which it has been taken up by Corbyn opponents, including hypocrites who floated "rootless cosmopolitan" criticisms of Ed Miliband when it suited just a few years ago. ..."
"... The resolution of the anti-Semitism crisis then is not a matter of compromise -- for each side the issue will only go away with the complete crushing and driving out of the party of the other. ..."
"... A good analysis. But, it emphasizes the point I made in the previous post, which is that, the right are currently engaged in an all out push to remove Corbyn and crush the left with the same old bureaucratic means. Whatever else Williamson may or may not be guilty of, his point that the leadership have facilitated this situation by their continual appeasement of the right is absolutely valid. Its that he is being attacked for, not anti-Semitism. ..."
"... Coming on the day when the FT have a column seriously positing that criticizing capitalism is inherently anti-Semitic, it seems to me that dancing on the head of a pin ..."
"... As many of the comments on your blog on Williamson attest, the salient feature of this - well, call it witch-hunt for the sake of argument - is the double standards where we have to be whiter than white, whilst no account whatsoever is taken of the most egregious racism elsewhere. ..."
"... The other nonsense that has grown up is that it is only those that suffer any form of discrimination who can define what that discrimination is, i.e. only Jews can define anti-Semitism, only black people can define racism against them, only women can define discrimination against women. ..."
"... That then assumes that the members of each of these groups are themselves homogeneous, and agreed in such definitions. In reality, it means that dominant elements, i.e. those connected to the ruling class and ruling ideas get to make those determinations. ..."
"... If we look at anti-Semitism, for example, it is quite clear that there is no agreement amongst Jews on what constitutes anti-Semitism. The JVL, certainly have a different definition than the JLM. ..."
"... Secker wrote a piece in the Morning Star last year comparing claims of anti-Semitism within Labour to the story of the emperor's new clothes. ..."
"... Given that the actual data, even allowing for all of the spurious and mischievous accusations of anti-Semitism in the party, made by right-wing enemies of the the party, and particularly of Corbyn and his supporters, amounts to only 0.1% of the membership, and given that of these, 40% were straight away found to be accusations against people who were not even LP members, with a further 20%, being found to have absolutely no evidence to back them, its quite possible that individual members of the LP, have never seen any instance of it. ..."
"... Take out all those mischievous and malicious allegations made in order to whip up the hysteria, so as to to damage the party, by its enemies, and you arrive at a figure of only 400 potential cases, out of a membership of 600,000, which is 1 member in 1500. ..."
"... In fact, based upon the actual facts, as opposed to the fiction and factional hysteria that is being whipped up by right-wing opponents of Corbyn and the party, and by supporters of Zionism for their own narrow political reasons, the chances are about 14: that you will never see any even potential instance of anti-Semitism, even on the narrow definition that the party has now imposed upon itself, which comes pretty close if not entirely to identifying anti-Semitism with anti-Zionism, or even just criticism of the current Bonapartist regime of Netanyahu. ..."
"... In the US, Jewish groups that have long been ardent defenders of Israel have more recently come out to criticize the regime of Netanyahu, and the actions of the Israeli state. The main defenders of Zionism, besides the actual Zionists themselves, appear to be people like the AWL, who for whatever reason hitched their wagon to Zionist ideology some time ago, ..."
"... Just because the only case of stabbing I have witnessed was more than 50 years ago, does not, and should not lead me to think that knife crime was worse 50 years ago than it is today. The actual data would seem to suggest that cases of anti-Semitism were greater in the LP in previous times than they are currently, contrary to what the media and those with factional motives would have us believe. ..."
"... The apparent level of anti-semitism in Labour is a modern phenomenon turbo-charged and amplified by social media. People have their views reinforced within their bunkers where anti-Israeli memes become anti-Zionist and then become anti-Semitic. It is much easier to send an anonymous email than a letter. ..."
"... I wouldn't trust Lansman on this issue, any more than on many others. Lansman abolished democracy, to the extent it existed to begin with, by turning it into his personal fiefdom, reminiscent of the activities of Hyndman and the SDF. His position on anti-Semitism, and fighting the witch-hunt, and of appeasing the Blair-right's as they attacked Corbyn, has been appalling throughout. ..."
"... Having abolished any democracy in Momentum, which he now runs as its CEO, he also appears to want Corbyn to do the same thing with the Labour Party, abolishing its internal democratic procedures, and putting himself personally in charge of those disciplinary measures ..."
"... Its notable that, yesterday, when the Welsh Labour Grass Roots organisation came out to call for Williamson's suspension to be reversed, Kinnock and other Blair-rights immediately called for an investigation into them, ..."
"... This truly is reaching into the realms of McCarthyism, where you are found guilty not just of witchcraft, but of consorting with witches, or even having an opinion as to whether an individual charged with witchcraft is guilty, or even the extent to which the number of witches amongst might be exaggerated. ..."
"... It's not a factually accurate description of global political realities, because Israel does not control the US, if that is what the image is intended to imply. But, the message, is thereby anti-Israeli state, not anti-Semitic. It could only be considered anti-Semitic, if in fact you are a Zionist and claim that Israel and Jews are are interchangeable terms, which they are not. ..."
"... If we replace Zionism with Toryism, and Jew with British, the situation becomes fairly clear. If the we show the British state as being controlled by Tories, who implement their ideology of Toryism, in what way would criticism of the British state, under the control of such Tories, or criticism of Tories be the equivalent of British people as a whole? ..."
"... The hope of a Two-State Solution disappeared long ago, and was never credible. It simply allows Zionists to proclaim they are in favour of it, whilst doing everything to make it practically impossible, such as extending West Bank Settlements. The solution must flow from a struggle for democratic rights for Israeli Arabs, and for a right for all Arabs in occupied territories to be extended the same rights as any other Israeli, including the right to vote, and send representatives to the Knesset. As I argued thirty years ago, the longer-term solution is a Federal Republic of Israel and Palestine, guaranteeing democratic rights to all, as part of building a wider Federal Republic of MENA. ..."
"... Jim Denham: imperialist lackey and sycophant turned Witch hunter in chief ..."
"... Let us be very clear about what this witch hunt is about, it is about purging from public life any credible and effective opposition to Israel in particular and more generally opposition to the imperialist barbarians of the imperialist core. It is about driving from universities, social media and intellectual life any form of opposition to the interests of the imperialists. ..."
"... A UN report has concluded that Israel deliberately targeted and killed hundreds of protesting civilians, including children and disabled people and it shot 20,000+ people (yes 20,000+!). The UN says this likely a war crime. Why are the noble defenders of the Palestinian cause in the dock and not notorious Palestinian haters like Jim Denham? ..."
"... These attacks on Corbyn and his supporters, repeated in all of the most aggressive imperialist countries, are simply a proxy attack on the Palestinian people themselves. ..."
"... Jim Denham's comment here illustrates the problem entirely. The picture he has linked to shows an alien symbiote having attached itself to the face of the statue of liberty. The statue of liberty here represents the US. The symbiote has on its back the Israeli Flag, and likewise, thereby represents the state of Israel. The picture therefore, represents the well-worn, and clearly factually wrong meme that Israel controls the US. ..."
"... But, as a Zionist organisation, the AWL and its members cannot distinguish between the state of Israel and Jews, so they cannot distinguish between criticism of the state of Israel, and criticism if Jews. For them, as for the Zionist ideology of the state of Israel, which is most clearly manifest in the ideology of its current political leadership, in the form of the Bonapartist regime of Netanyahu, with the recent introduction of blatantly racist laws that discriminate even more openly against not Jewish Israeli citizens, and with his willingness to try to keep his corrupt regime in office by going into coalition with an avowedly Neo-Nazi party that until recent times was considered beyond the pale, even by most Zionists, the term Zionism is synonymous with the term Jew. So, any criticism of Zionism, or of Israel is for them immediately equated with anti-Semitism. ..."
"... Once again Jim Denham reefuses to engage in rational debate, and again resorts instead to his assumption that Israel = Jews, as well as his crude attempts at a typical Stalinist amalgam, to conflate the views of his opponents with some hate figure. ..."
"... Again Jim Denham makes the conflation of Israel and Jews explicit when he says, "This image also plays on the tired and disgraceful antisemitic 'conspiracy theory' trope of undue Israeli (Jewish) influence on world affairs." ..."
"... The way that the right are using anti-Zionism as the equivalent for anti-Semitism, and the appeasement of that attack has led them to widen the scope of that attack. As Labour List reports , right-wing Labour MP Siobhan McDonagh, is now claiming that to be anti-capitalist is also to be "anti-Semitic". The idea was put forward also by former Blair-right spin doctor, John McTernan, who wrote an article in the FT to that same effect ..."
"... As the right-wing extend their witch-hunt against socialists in the LP to claim that Marxists are necessarily misogynist, as well as anti-Semitic – and the same logic presented by McDonagh, McTernon, and Phillips would presumably mean that the Left must also be xenophobic, homophobic, anti- Green, and many other charges they want to throw into the mix – it will be interesting to see whether and to what extent the AWL, join them in that assault, in the same way they have done in their promotion of Zionism. ..."
Aug 14, 2019 | averypublicsociologist.blogspot.com

... ... ...

The problem, however, is because this is overlaid by factional struggle ...

This, of course, is compounded by the over-amplifying of anti-Semitism by the media and the alacrity with which it has been taken up by Corbyn opponents, including hypocrites who floated "rootless cosmopolitan" criticisms of Ed Miliband when it suited just a few years ago.

Here's the thing. Just because your opponents take up an issue, some times cynically and in bad faith. and use it to inflict as much damage as they can does not mean the problem is fictitious.

Precisely because they can point to Facebook groups full of useful fools, and Twitter accounts with Corbyn-supporting hashtags acting as if the Israel lobby and "Zionists" are the only active force in British politics, this is the stuff that makes the attacks effective and trashes the standing of the party in the eyes of many Jews and the community's allies and friends.

The institutional anti-Semitism in the Labour Party is, therefore, somewhat different to the kind you find in other institutions. It is sustained by the battle for the party, a grim battlefront in a zero sum game of entrenched position vs entrenched position. As such, whatever the leadership do, whatever new processes the General Secretary introduces for one side it will never be enough because, as far as many of them concerned, the leadership are politically illegitimate; and for the other it's a sop and capitulation.

The resolution of the anti-Semitism crisis then is not a matter of compromise -- for each side the issue will only go away with the complete crushing and driving out of the party of the other. A situation that can only poison the well further, and guarantee anti-Semitism won't honestly and comprehensively be confronted.


Boffy said... 3 March 2019 at 16:42
A good analysis. But, it emphasizes the point I made in the previous post, which is that, the right are currently engaged in an all out push to remove Corbyn and crush the left with the same old bureaucratic means. Whatever else Williamson may or may not be guilty of, his point that the leadership have facilitated this situation by their continual appeasement of the right is absolutely valid. Its that he is being attacked for, not anti-Semitism.

It is first necessary to close ranks, and defeat the assault of the Right. As Marr said to Blair this morning, had Prescott announced he was forming a separate group, and was establishing his own witch-hunting bureaucratic apparatus in the party, Blair would have sacked him immediately - actually not so easy as the Deputy is elected. But the thrust is valid. Unless Corbyn deals with Watson, the Right will roll over the Left, despite the huge disparity in numbers.

Again it comes down to whether Corbyn is up for that task, or whether we need a leadership of the left with a bit more backbone to see it through.

asquith said... 3 March 2019 at 18:54
I'm afraid this IS due to the "intersectionality" cult, whereby certain groups are always privileged and wrong, and some are always oppressed and right. Jews are, according to this "analysis", the uber-privileged and uber-white.

We've heard several times that according to "intersectionality" that it's impossible to be racist against white people because racism requires both prejudice and power, and white people are by definition powerful. Therefore, anti-Semitism is dismissed because it can't be a thing because Jews are all-powerful and even more oppressive than other whites.

Those who don't subscribe to all of these beliefs are nevertheless tinged with them, which is why people who aren't staunch antisemites will nevertheless fail to take anti-Semitism seriously.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=66qe76gkCxo&t=166s

Ian Gibson said... 4 March 2019 at 05:30
Coming on the day when the FT have a column seriously positing that criticizing capitalism is inherently anti-Semitic, it seems to me that dancing on the head of a pin about whether the 'careless' anti-Semitism you've described means the party is institutionally anti-Semitic is rather missing the point. (OK, the column is by John McTernan, but the FT gave him column inches to argue that case, and I guess they didn't mean it as the satire it most certainly is.)

As many of the comments on your blog on Williamson attest, the salient feature of this - well, call it witch-hunt for the sake of argument - is the double standards where we have to be whiter than white, whilst no account whatsoever is taken of the most egregious racism elsewhere. We live in society: we can never, ever be that whiter than white - especially when it comes to Israel/Palestine, which is so full of contradictions and traps for the unwary (e.g. the position of the Israeli state claiming to speak for all Jewry around the world, in the way that the Board of Deputies position themselves as speaking for all British Jews - neither close to being true, but small wonder that opponents of what they do and stand for take that universality at face value.)

The fight we need to take up is to compare and contrast just how pro-active the current party is against anti-Semitism in its constitution and machinery with the glaring absence of such elsewhere, and to present a positive picture of what we are doing, rather than mumbling apologetically into our beards. We need to take the fight to the rigged system at the same time as being unstinting in rooting out the troubling stuff.

Boffy said... 4 March 2019 at 09:47
The other nonsense that has grown up is that it is only those that suffer any form of discrimination who can define what that discrimination is, i.e. only Jews can define anti-Semitism, only black people can define racism against them, only women can define discrimination against women.

That then assumes that the members of each of these groups are themselves homogeneous, and agreed in such definitions. In reality, it means that dominant elements, i.e. those connected to the ruling class and ruling ideas get to make those determinations.

If we look at anti-Semitism, for example, it is quite clear that there is no agreement amongst Jews on what constitutes anti-Semitism. The JVL, certainly have a different definition than the JLM.

But, just rationally, the concept that only those discriminated against get to define the discrimination is bonkers. Suppose you come from Somalia or some other country that practices FGM, you could argue that it is part of your cultural heritage, and that anyone seeking to prevent you from undertaking this barbaric practice was thereby racist, on your self-definition of what that discrimination against you amounts to. Or Saudis might argue that it is racist to argue against their practice of lopping off women's heads, or stoning them to death for adultery, including having been raped, etc.

Jim Denham said... 4 March 2019 at 15:25
The JVL come pretty close to arguing that there is *no* anti-Semitism in the Labour party (Jenny Manson, for instance, says she's never witnessed any)and Glyn Secker wrote a piece in the Morning Star last year comparing claims of anti-Semitism within Labour to the story of the emperor's new clothes.
Boffy said... 5 March 2019 at 09:00
Given that the actual data, even allowing for all of the spurious and mischievous accusations of anti-Semitism in the party, made by right-wing enemies of the the party, and particularly of Corbyn and his supporters, amounts to only 0.1% of the membership, and given that of these, 40% were straight away found to be accusations against people who were not even LP members, with a further 20%, being found to have absolutely no evidence to back them, its quite possible that individual members of the LP, have never seen any instance of it.

Take out all those mischievous and malicious allegations made in order to whip up the hysteria, so as to to damage the party, by its enemies, and you arrive at a figure of only 400 potential cases, out of a membership of 600,000, which is 1 member in 1500. If the average branch size if 100 active members, it means on average there is one potential case of anti-Semitism in every 15 branches. So, if you are a member in any of the other 14 branches, you would never see that one potential case of anti-Semitism.

In fact, based upon the actual facts, as opposed to the fiction and factional hysteria that is being whipped up by right-wing opponents of Corbyn and the party, and by supporters of Zionism for their own narrow political reasons, the chances are about 14: that you will never see any even potential instance of anti-Semitism, even on the narrow definition that the party has now imposed upon itself, which comes pretty close if not entirely to identifying anti-Semitism with anti-Zionism, or even just criticism of the current Bonapartist regime of Netanyahu.

In the US, Jewish groups that have long been ardent defenders of Israel have more recently come out to criticize the regime of Netanyahu, and the actions of the Israeli state. The main defenders of Zionism, besides the actual Zionists themselves, appear to be people like the AWL, who for whatever reason hitched their wagon to Zionist ideology some time ago, probably in their usual knee-jerk reaction of putting a plus sign wherever the SWP put a minus. Having done so, and as a result of the bureaucratic centrist nature of the sect, they find themselves now having to follow through on the position they adopted on the basis of the "practical politics" - opportunism - as it dictated itself to them at the time.

If, and probably more likely when, they change position, it will come as with all their previous changes of position with the assertion that "nothing has changed", as when after claiming a few years ago that the LP was a stinking corpse - as they ridiculously stood their own candidates in elections with the inevitable result - and the next minute proclaimed themselves as its most ardent militants, as they sought to use their sharp elbows to gain positions on Momentum's leading bodies!

Boffy said... 5 March 2019 at 09:22
Incidentally, on the question of "observance", the only time I have seen someone get stabbed, is more than 50 years ago, when I was at school. I've seen plenty of other violent stuff in the intervening period, for example, people getting glassed, people having wrought iron tables smashed over their heads. My sister, who is several years older than me, and was out bopping during the days of the Teddy Boys, saw more people getting slashed, in the 1950's, because the flick knife was the Ted's favoured weapon.

But, that doesn't mean that I disbelieve the media when it talks about the current spate of knife crimes. Its just that, however, terrible such crimes are for those that suffer or witness them, and no matter how much the media that has to sensationalise every story, for its own commercial purposes, talks about an epidemic or a knife crime crisis, the number of knife crimes per head of population is extremely small.

The chances that 999 out of 1,000 of us will never be the victim of, or witness knife crime does not mean it doesn't exist. But, those that then claim that the 999 out of 1,000 of us who say we have not seen it, must be somehow being dishonest, are not dealing with the facts, and are simply fuelling a moral panic.

When some phenomena is statistically insignificant, which 1 in 1,500 cases, is, and when as with many such phenomena there is no normal distribution of the occurrence of such cases - for example, knife crime will tend to be concentrated in particular areas - trying to present any kind of rational analysis based upon personal observation is a mug's game.

Just because the only case of stabbing I have witnessed was more than 50 years ago, does not, and should not lead me to think that knife crime was worse 50 years ago than it is today. The actual data would seem to suggest that cases of anti-Semitism were greater in the LP in previous times than they are currently, contrary to what the media and those with factional motives would have us believe. It is certainly thec ase that anti-Semitism is a bigger problem in the Tory party, and other right-wing organisations than it is in the LP, again not that you would know that from the reporting of it, or from the attitude of certain factional sects, such as the AWL.

Jim Denham said... 5 March 2019 at 11:14

Labour has 'much larger' group of antisemitic members which Corbyn has failed to deal with, Momentum founder warns

By Rob Merrick Deputy Political Editor The Independent, Monday 25 February 2019 16:10 |

Labour has "a much larger" group of antisemitic members than it recognises which Jeremy Corbyn has failed to "deal with", Momentum founder Jon Lansman has warned.

The Labour leader's long-standing ally said "conspiracy theorists" had infiltrated the party – a consequence of its huge surge in membership in recent years.

Mr Lansman stopped short of backing the call from Tom Watson, Labour's deputy leader, for Mr Corbyn to take personal charge of the antisemitism complaints dogging Labour.

But he said: "I do think we have a major problem and it always seems to me that we underestimate the scale of it. I think it is a widespread problem.

"I think it is now obvious that we have a much larger number of people with hardcore antisemitic opinions which, unfortunately, is polluting the atmosphere in a lot of constituency parties and in particular online. We have to deal with these people."

Speedy said... 6 March 2019 at 06:39
Approaching this from another angle...

The apparent level of anti-semitism in Labour is a modern phenomenon turbo-charged and amplified by social media. People have their views reinforced within their bunkers where anti-Israeli memes become anti-Zionist and then become anti-Semitic. It is much easier to send an anonymous email than a letter.

History is very much the tale of new technology transforming the potential of human behaviour and beliefs, and one of the oldest beliefs ("the blood libel") is anti-Semitism.

This is how Labour has changed - ie, the rise of Corbyn has coincided with the ubiquity of this technology. In fact, arguably the rise of Corbyn was aided by it.

Corbyn's nuanced position on Israel/Palestine gives permission to social media extremists.

The rest is history.

Incidentally, this is why you are less likely to confront anti-Semitism in real-life while the internet may be awash with it - there are the real and virtual identities which only occasionally bleed into each other.

Which is true and which is not? We might wonder if technology has evolved ahead of human adaptation - the "real world" filters that govern apparently "real" behaviour missing.

I'm sure even certain posters here are less bananas in "real life" than their online comments might suggest!

Boffy said... 6 March 2019 at 10:42
I wouldn't trust Lansman on this issue, any more than on many others. Lansman abolished democracy, to the extent it existed to begin with, by turning it into his personal fiefdom, reminiscent of the activities of Hyndman and the SDF. His position on anti-Semitism, and fighting the witch-hunt, and of appeasing the Blair-right's as they attacked Corbyn, has been appalling throughout.

Having abolished any democracy in Momentum, which he now runs as its CEO, he also appears to want Corbyn to do the same thing with the Labour Party, abolishing its internal democratic procedures, and putting himself personally in charge of those disciplinary measures. That truly would be the actions of a Bonapartist. That Tom Watson is prepared to do that, as he sets himself up in a situation of dual power, to confront Corbyn is no surprise that anyone who even remotely considers themselves a part of the Left should support should a move is a disgrace. Perhaps no surprise that the AWL supporters of Zionism, and the witch-hunt, appear to be doing so, then.

Its notable that, yesterday, when the Welsh Labour Grass Roots organisation came out to call for Williamson's suspension to be reversed, Kinnock and other Blair-rights immediately called for an investigation into them, and for its Secretary who sits on Labour's NEC to also be suspended, for interfering in an ongoing investigation! So, why did those same Blair-rights not call for the suspension of Watson, who immediately demanded Williamson's suspension, and withdrawal of the whip, before any investigation, or indeed of Hodge and others who on a daily basis go to the media to sally forth about cases that are under investigation, or waiting for investigation.

This truly is reaching into the realms of McCarthyism, where you are found guilty not just of witchcraft, but of consorting with witches, or even having an opinion as to whether an individual charged with witchcraft is guilty, or even the extent to which the number of witches amongst might be exaggerated.

Jim Denham's comment is a case in point. How much more "anti-Semitism" exists? What is the factual basis of the statement, as opposed to click bait headline. Even if the actual extent is 100% more than the data so far presented, that would mean that potentially 1 in 750 LP members might be guilty of some form of anti-Semitism. Its hardly an epidemic, or institutional anti-Semitism, and far less than exists in the Tory Party, which is also infected by Islamaphobia, misogyny, homophobia and xenophobia.

In fact, its probably much less than you would find in the BBC, Sky or other establishment institutions. Anti-Semitism exists, and is a problem, but that does not mean it is not being used by Labour's enemies or the proponents of Zionism for their own political ends. The real conspiracy theorists are those that try to present anti-Semitism as a conspiracy based upon infiltration of the LP, the same people who presented the support for Corbyn from 300,000 new members as really just being a case of far left entryism, by Trots.

Jim Denham said... 7 March 2019 at 09:10
This is a meme, taken from Incog Man, a far-right site. It was posted with positive endorsement by a Labour member, Kayla Bibby, a delegate to conference in fact:

Link to the meme:

https://static.timesofisrael.com/jewishndev/uploads/2019/02/ellmann-640x400.jpg

Bibby subsequently received only a formal warning, with Thomas Gardiner of Labour's Governance and Legal Unit (what used to be the Compliance Unit), saying it was only anti-Israel, and not anti-Semitic.

Not only could a Labour member post something obviously anti-Semitic, it was not deemed to be so by the Compliance Unit. I bet we all know people who would agree.

Boffy said... 7 March 2019 at 12:36
It's not a factually accurate description of global political realities, because Israel does not control the US, if that is what the image is intended to imply. But, the message, is thereby anti-Israeli state, not anti-Semitic. It could only be considered anti-Semitic, if in fact you are a Zionist and claim that Israel and Jews are are interchangeable terms, which they are not.

In fact, there are probably not an inconsiderable number of Jews, who think that the state of Israel does exercise undue influence over US policy, and certainly it seems to be the case that, in the US, more liberal Jewish groups, seem to think that one reason that the Bonapartist regime of Netanyahu, in Israel, was so supportive of Trump, and we see the same support for Trump amongst Zionists in Britain, is at least in part due to the fact that Obama had been distancing the US from its historical uncritical support for Israel.

If we replace Zionism with Toryism, and Jew with British, the situation becomes fairly clear. If the we show the British state as being controlled by Tories, who implement their ideology of Toryism, in what way would criticism of the British state, under the control of such Tories, or criticism of Tories be the equivalent of British people as a whole?

Clearly it wouldn't, because there are a majority of British people who oppose Toryism, and thereby oppose the actions of the British state under the control of the Tories. A nationalist, or racist might want to equate the nation state with the whole of its people, but the people who are doing that here, by interpreting criticism of the Israeli state with anti-Semitism, are the Zionists themselves, and their apologists, because they seek thereby to delegitimize any criticism of the state of Israel and Zionism by equating it with anti-Semitism.

That in effect makes the Zionists themselves, and their apologists anti-Semites, because in adopting this equation of Jewishness with being Zionist, and with Israel, they make all Jews thereby responsible for the actions of Zionism and of the state of Israel!

Boffy said... 7 March 2019 at 13:47
The problem for the AWL, and its members like Jim Denham, on this issue comes down to this. Until thirty years ago, the organisation, under its previous names, was an ardent defender of the ideas and traditions of Jim Cannon. Cannon's "The Struggle for a Proletarian Party" was required reading for all of its members. Then, in an about face, the organisation overnight collapsed into what Trotsky called "the petit-bourgeois Third Camp", and so became ardent defenders of the enemies of Cannon, the petit-bourgeois Third Camp of Burnham- Shachtman. That kind of wild zig-zag is typical of bureaucratic-centrist organisations, which is what the AWL is.

As part of this collapse into the petit-bourgeois Third Camp, and the moralistic politics it is based upon, the AWL also adopted the ideas of Third Campists like Al Glotzer, in relation to Israel and Zionism, as opposed to the position of Mandel, which represented a continuation of the ideas of Cannon and Trotsky. I set this out in a short blog post 12 years ago Glotzer and the Jews as Special , after the AWL had repeatedly censored it appearing on their website in response to an article setting out Glotzer's position.

Having committed themselves to the reactionary Zionist ideology that essentially underpins Glotzer's stance - the same thing idea of having lost faith in the working-class, and so having to rely on the bourgeois state, or "progressive imperialism" to accomplish the tasks of the working-class, is behind the AWL's support for NATo's war against Serbia, Iraq, Libya etc., but is also behind the politics of other Third Campists such as the SWP, that instead look to other larger forces, such as reactionary "anti-imperialist" states to carry forward its moral agenda - the AWL are left now trying to defend their position of support for the creation of a racist, expansionist state in Israel, as the inevitable consequences of that venture unfold.

For a Marxist, it is not at all difficult to say that the establishment of the state of Israel is one that we should not have supported at the time, because it would lead to the kind of consequences we see today, and yet, to say, 75 years on from the creation of that state, it is an established fact, and trying to unwind history, by calling for the destruction of that state would have even more calamitous consequences for the global working-class. It is quite easy for a Marx to say that the current nature of the Israeli state, as a racist Zionist state, based, like almost no other state in the world on a confessional basis, i.e. of being a Jewish state, a state for Jews in preference to every other ethnic/religious group flows from the ideology, and nature of its creation. But, then to argue that the answer to that is not a destruction of the state of Israel, which could only be done on the bones of millions of Israeli citizens, Jews and Arabs alike, but is to wage a working-class based struggle against that racist foundation upon which the state has been founded, and that struggle is one that must unite Jews and Arabs alike. In fact, the position of palestinians today is a mirror image of that of the Jews 75 years ago.

The hope of a Two-State Solution disappeared long ago, and was never credible. It simply allows Zionists to proclaim they are in favour of it, whilst doing everything to make it practically impossible, such as extending West Bank Settlements. The solution must flow from a struggle for democratic rights for Israeli Arabs, and for a right for all Arabs in occupied territories to be extended the same rights as any other Israeli, including the right to vote, and send representatives to the Knesset. As I argued thirty years ago, the longer-term solution is a Federal Republic of Israel and Palestine, guaranteeing democratic rights to all, as part of building a wider Federal Republic of MENA.

Anonymous said... 7 March 2019 at 16:54

Jim Denham: imperialist lackey and sycophant turned Witch hunter in chief

Let us be very clear about what this witch hunt is about, it is about purging from public life any credible and effective opposition to Israel in particular and more generally opposition to the imperialist barbarians of the imperialist core. It is about driving from universities, social media and intellectual life any form of opposition to the interests of the imperialists.

This is nothing but authoritarianism in action, censorship of political opponents and the closing down of any credible definition of free speech.

In other words this is something any leftist worth half an atom would be fighting against with all their energies.

But what do we find, pathetic pro war pro imperialists leftists and post modern liberals joining the witch hunt.

Meanwhile in the real world:

A UN report has concluded that Israel deliberately targeted and killed hundreds of protesting civilians, including children and disabled people and it shot 20,000+ people (yes 20,000+!). The UN says this likely a war crime. Why are the noble defenders of the Palestinian cause in the dock and not notorious Palestinian haters like Jim Denham?

How can anyone on the left get away with supporting and providing ideological cover for Israel How can any leftist allow a socialist movement to be sabotaged by the Israel state and its army of appalling immoral apologists?

These attacks on Corbyn and his supporters, repeated in all of the most aggressive imperialist countries, are simply a proxy attack on the Palestinian people themselves.

Boffy said... 8 March 2019 at 11:15
Jim Denham's comment here illustrates the problem entirely. The picture he has linked to shows an alien symbiote having attached itself to the face of the statue of liberty. The statue of liberty here represents the US. The symbiote has on its back the Israeli Flag, and likewise, thereby represents the state of Israel. The picture therefore, represents the well-worn, and clearly factually wrong meme that Israel controls the US.

But, as a Zionist organisation, the AWL and its members cannot distinguish between the state of Israel and Jews, so they cannot distinguish between criticism of the state of Israel, and criticism if Jews. For them, as for the Zionist ideology of the state of Israel, which is most clearly manifest in the ideology of its current political leadership, in the form of the Bonapartist regime of Netanyahu, with the recent introduction of blatantly racist laws that discriminate even more openly against not Jewish Israeli citizens, and with his willingness to try to keep his corrupt regime in office by going into coalition with an avowedly Neo-Nazi party that until recent times was considered beyond the pale, even by most Zionists, the term Zionism is synonymous with the term Jew. So, any criticism of Zionism, or of Israel is for them immediately equated with anti-Semitism.

It is what leads such Zionists to then also insist on their right to determine who is a Jew or not. The AWL do that with all those Jews, such as the JVL, who refuse to accept the AWL's definition of anti-Zionism = Anti-Semitism. Its like the old saw that the definition of a Scot is someone who wears a kilt, and when asked about Jock McTavish, from Arbroath, who does not wear a kilt, the reply comes back, then he cannot really be a Scot!

The Zionists insists on defining anti-Zionism as anti-Semitism, and thereby closing down debate. Jim Denham does that most clearly here, in his refusal to debate the actual substantive points. It is typical of the attitude of the AWL, in general which long since gave up trying to defend its bourgeois liberal, opportunist politics by rational debate, and instead turned to bureaucratic censorship, and ill-tempered invective.

Boffy said... 9 March 2019 at 08:58
Once again Jim Denham reefuses to engage in rational debate, and again resorts instead to his assumption that Israel = Jews, as well as his crude attempts at a typical Stalinist amalgam, to conflate the views of his opponents with some hate figure.

Again Jim Denham makes the conflation of Israel and Jews explicit when he says, "This image also plays on the tired and disgraceful antisemitic 'conspiracy theory' trope of undue Israeli (Jewish) influence on world affairs."

The conflation of equating Israel with the term Jew flows directly from the Zionist ideology that underpins the Israeli State, but which also adopted by the AWL, and its members like Jim Denham. It thereby effectively denies statehood to non-Jewish Israeli citizens, making them non-persons, erasing them from history, in the same way that Jim Denham has sought to do in diminishing if not entirely denying the genocides against other ethnic groups such as Native North Americans, Australian and New Zealand aboriginals etc., as a result of his Zionist privileging of the specific genocide against Jews in the Holocaust.

It is the same kind of racism, of course, that is applied by the BNP and other white nationalists, who seek to portray Britain as being a nation for white Britons, and thereby deny other Britons the right to consider themselves really British. Every socialist, can understand the racist nature of that ideology when it is applied to Britain, and elsewhere, but the AWL, and its members, like Jim Denham, deny it when it is applied to Israel, which they want to treat as being different to every other state on the planet, in defence of their Zionist ideology that privileges Israeli Jews over others, and by extension equates the term Jew with the term Israel.

Its most extreme version comes with the fascists that Netanyahu has now gone into alliance with, whose ideology states that God only put gentiels on the Earth to be slaves and serve the needs of Jews, as the chosen people! It means that they see the place of non-Jewish Israelis in those terms, as being allowed to remain in Israel only on that subservient basis. This is the ideology that the AWL is now logically tied to, in having adopted Zionism as the answer to the problems of Jewish workers rather than socialism.

And, of course, the extension of that principle for other Zionists is illustrated in their support for fascists like Orban in Hungary, who wants to adopt a similar nationalist ideology of keeping Hungary, and other "white" European nations exclusively for "whites", in the same way that Zionists want to keep Israel exclusively for Jews.

It is a sorry state when socialists have degenerated to such an extent that not only do they fail to distinguish between nationalist ideology and socialist ideology by adopting nationalist solutions to workers problems such as "nationalisation", by the capitalist state, but where, in adopting such reactionary nationalist ideology, the logic of their position drives them to supporting the idea that nation states should be exclusively for particular ethnic groups, such as Israel for the Jews, Hungary for white Christians and so on.

Boffy said... 9 March 2019 at 16:31
The way that the right are using anti-Zionism as the equivalent for anti-Semitism, and the appeasement of that attack has led them to widen the scope of that attack. As Labour List reports , right-wing Labour MP Siobhan McDonagh, is now claiming that to be anti-capitalist is also to be "anti-Semitic". The idea was put forward also by former Blair-right spin doctor, John McTernan, who wrote an article in the FT to that same effect

Channelling Jim Denham, McTernan writes,

"As the historian Deborah Lipstadt points out, anti-Semitic tropes share three elements: money or finance is always in the mix; an acknowledged cleverness that is also seen as conniving; and, power -- particularly a power to manipulate more powerful entities.

All of these feature in the criticism of Israel and the so-called Israel lobby. They can be easily moulded into a critique of capitalism, too."

The line of argument was illustrated to me some weeks ago, in a comment I received in relation to an article I wrote about Marx's analysis of fictitious capital, as part of my critique of Paul Mason's Postcapitalism . The commenter, argued that Marx's analysis of fictitious capital appeared to be simply Marx blaming bankers and money lenders, for which read Jews, for the world's ills, and was thereby simply an expression of the well-known fact that Marx was a self-hating Jew, much as the AWL, describe all those other Jews that do not share their commitment to |Zionism. The commenter as evidence of this provided a link to a literary critique of Marx's On The Jewish Question , which is cited as proving that Marx was an anti-semite.

In fact, I pointed out that in nothing that Marx had written about fictitious capital, or what I had written describing Marx's analysis of fictitious capital are bankers discussed, let alone Jewish bankers. The anonymous commenter, has, in fact, since deleted their comments, meaning that my responses to them were also deleted.
But, this is the way this right-wing witch-hunt proceeds, by throwing a net to catch whatever they can trawl in, and at the very least sowing the seeds of doubt as they require those being attacked to respond to their wild accusations. It means that any statement can be framed to mean that there is some subtext beneath the actual words and pictures that is somehow anti-Semitic, if only you know the relevant coda to unlock the true meaning, and anyone who doubts the meaning being placed upon it, is thereby a defender of the anti-Semitic message. As with the attacks on Momentum, and the initial surge of membership supporting Corbyn, it is always phrased in dark conspiratorial language, about unseen forces being behind what is seen on the surface. So, we were supposed to believe that a few hundred Trots in Britain somehow morphed into 300,000 new LP members! But, Momentum now having shown that it is a tame part of the establishment, is even able to recruit McTernan himself as a member.

The appeasement as with all witch-hunts only provokes the witch-hunters to widen the scope of their activities. The AWL, which was at the forefront of helping the witch-hunters with their shameful support for the witch-hunting of Jackie Walker, was repaid by having their own members expelled too, and having right-wing Labour MP's appear on TV, to characterise the AWL themselves as "anti-Semites", despite their well-known Zionist politics. Yet, oddly, the AWL seem to consider that a price worth paying, as their advocacy of Zionism seems to trump any other consideration for them in their politics.

Boffy said... 10 March 2019 at 11:09
It didn't take long for my comment of yesterday to be proved correct. Today we learn that Jess Phillips has claimed that Marxism is necessarily misogynist, because it places class oppression above all else, and so now claims that as well as the Left in the party being anti-Semitic, it is also misogynist. The attack of the Right, as I said yesterday will spread ever wider on this irrational basis, using all of the usual conspiratorial language that such witch-hunts have always adopted. Rather like a Dan Brown novel, it will imply that there are dark (Marxist) forces at work, of which Corbyn is the head of the coven (or even worse that some unseen Dark Overlord is really standing behind Corbyn, who is only its representative on Earth (i.e. in the LP).

It will suggest that these dark forces do not speak openly, but only in codes and symbols that have to be unlocked by the forces of Light, who like Jim Denham, can look into the minds of men and women, and see what is really going inside.

I actually found that despite the anonymous Zionist commenter to my article on Medium having deleted their comments, my replies to them, were in fact still floating around here , here , and here .

As the right-wing extend their witch-hunt against socialists in the LP to claim that Marxists are necessarily misogynist, as well as anti-Semitic – and the same logic presented by McDonagh, McTernon, and Phillips would presumably mean that the Left must also be xenophobic, homophobic, anti- Green, and many other charges they want to throw into the mix – it will be interesting to see whether and to what extent the AWL, join them in that assault, in the same way they have done in their promotion of Zionism.

[Aug 11, 2019] Wow!! Those suckers at the BBC manage NOT to mention Maxwell or Prince Andrew

Aug 11, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

Mina , Aug 10 2019 15:36 utc | 52

Wow!! Those suckers at the BBC manage NOT to mention Maxwell or Prince Andrew (ok... they are mentioned in some of the links they give, but come one!!)
https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-49306032

[Aug 05, 2019] UK 'up to its neck' in Russiagate affair, says George Galloway, as secret texts reveal British role

Barr now has goods to jail major conspirators for life. It is unlikely happened but we can hope.
Notable quotes:
"... "Turns out it was Britain that was the foreign country interfering in American affairs," former MP George Galloway told RT, speaking about the new revelations published by the Guardian about early British involvement in the 'Russiagate' investigation. ..."
"... The Guardian reported on texts between former deputy FBI director Andrew McCabe and Jeremy Fleming, his then counterpart at MI5, who now heads GCHQ. The two men met in 2016 to discuss "our strange situation" – an apparent reference to Russia's alleged interference in US domestic politics. ..."
"... British intelligence "appears to have played a key role in the early stages," the report said. ..."
"... Galloway said the revelation was not surprising because people "already knew" that British intelligence had played a part in the Russia-related investigations in the US. He recalled that it was former British spy Christopher Steele who drew up the now-infamous Steele dossier, which made multiple unverifiable and salacious claims about Trump and has since been largely discredited. Britain is "up to its neck in the whole Russiagate affair," he said. ..."
"... Asked what the UK stood to gain by trying to implicate Russia in a US election scandal at a time when then-foreign secretary Boris Johnson was dismissing baseless claims of Russian interference in the Brexit campaign, Galloway noted that Johnson's comments on Russia have appeared to strangely sway between friendly and antagonistic. ..."
"... In June 2016, the FBI opened a covert investigation codenamed 'Crossfire Hurricane' into Trump's now disproven collusion with Moscow, which was later taken over by special counsel Robert Mueller. ..."
Jul 31, 2019 | www.rt.com

While hysteria raged about possible Russian "interference" in the 2016 US election, British intelligence officials were secretly playing a "key role" in helping instigate investigations into Donald Trump, secret texts have shown. "Turns out it was Britain that was the foreign country interfering in American affairs," former MP George Galloway told RT, speaking about the new revelations published by the Guardian about early British involvement in the 'Russiagate' investigation.

The Guardian reported on texts between former deputy FBI director Andrew McCabe and Jeremy Fleming, his then counterpart at MI5, who now heads GCHQ. The two men met in 2016 to discuss "our strange situation" – an apparent reference to Russia's alleged interference in US domestic politics.

British intelligence "appears to have played a key role in the early stages," the report said.

www.youtube.com/embed/y0X5ubiSd0M

Galloway said the revelation was not surprising because people "already knew" that British intelligence had played a part in the Russia-related investigations in the US. He recalled that it was former British spy Christopher Steele who drew up the now-infamous Steele dossier, which made multiple unverifiable and salacious claims about Trump and has since been largely discredited. Britain is "up to its neck in the whole Russiagate affair," he said.

The texts also reveal that the Brexit vote was viewed by some in the FBI as something that had been influenced by Russia.

Asked what the UK stood to gain by trying to implicate Russia in a US election scandal at a time when then-foreign secretary Boris Johnson was dismissing baseless claims of Russian interference in the Brexit campaign, Galloway noted that Johnson's comments on Russia have appeared to strangely sway between friendly and antagonistic.

Johnson is like "a sofa that bears the impression of the last person to sit upon him," the former MP quipped. What happens next will depend on who is leading the tango, "the orange man in Washington or the blonde mop-head in London."

In June 2016, the FBI opened a covert investigation codenamed 'Crossfire Hurricane' into Trump's now disproven collusion with Moscow, which was later taken over by special counsel Robert Mueller.

Ultimately, the two-year-long probe that followed came up short, producing no evidence to prove a conspiracy or collusion between Trump campaign officials and Russia

See also:

Also on rt.com Fear behind fury: As DNI, Ratcliffe could expose FISA files that Russiagaters hope stay buried

[Aug 03, 2019] I used to think the Guardian couldn't sink any further into hypocrisy but it has: A few months back the Guardian was pushing for various organisations, including the British Labour Party, to adopt the IHRA definition to combat so-called anti-semitism.

Aug 03, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

Ghost Ship , Aug 3 2019 10:55 utc | 72

I used to think the Guardian couldn't sink any further into hypocrisy but it has :

The internal emails, released after a freedom of information request by the Palestinian Solidarity Campaign, revealed the council attempted to assess the Big Ride website according to the rubric of the controversial IHRA definition .
A few months back the Guardian was pushing for various organisations, including the British Labour Party, to adopt the IHRA definition to combat so-called anti-semitism.

I don't remember it suggesting then that the IHRA definition was controversial then.

[Aug 01, 2019] Elizabeth Warren could hit the mark as the candidate best placed to beat Trump.

Aug 01, 2019 | discussion.theguardian.com

Katherine1984 , 31 Jul 2019 13:44

Like it or not, beating Donald Trump is no easy task.

A candidate too far to the left and they just won't get sufficient support from an electorate which inclines to the right (by UK standards).

Too establishment and "entitled" and some will hesitate to give them even a get-Trump-out vote.

Elizabeth Warren could hit the mark as the candidate best placed to beat Trump.

But she will have to brace herself for him to play a very nasty campaign against her.

MohammedS , 31 Jul 2019 13:24
Who gives a monkeys? The real issue is that the selfish, disorientated and cowardly way the Dems are conducting this race is handing Trump a winning platform for 2020.
After long hard thinking I have come to the sad conclusion that Trump is right and that he is indeed a genius. He has achieved what he had set out to do. He has polarised the standard bearer for democracy in the world. He has enriched himself and his family. He has broken American society, possibly irreversibly. He has brought about change in the worlds economies. He has also managed to set the debate and the stage to win in 2020. Now some may say he has been an awful president, but looking at his strategy he has been highly successful. He may not be what we want but he has certainly been better at feeling the pulse of America and deciding which medicine to give. A truly evil genius indeed.
TheMediaSux , 31 Jul 2019 13:15
Sanders and Warren are the only two with some kind of personality. The others look like they were created by lobbyists and corporate donors in a lab on a computer like Kelly Lebrock from Weird Science.
TremoluxMan , 31 Jul 2019 13:08
The point about taxes going up is a red herring and a straw man argument. If you get insurance through your employer, you pay anywhere from $300/month to $1200/month for yourself and family. Through a Medicare for all plan, that payment would disappear. Yes, you'd pay more in taxes to cover your health insurance, but it would likely be lower than private insurance, a net gain, with better coverage, no deductible or co-pays. Even if it was the same, it's still a wash. You're eliminating an expense for a tax. Plus, you're not paying for some executive's perks and exorbitant salary.

Personally, I'd feel better paying $50,000-$75,000/year to a government administrator than $10M-$20M/year + perks to a CEO.

ColoradoJack -> Andy Womack , 31 Jul 2019 12:10
Obama was simply being honest there. By any standard, Obama, both Clinton's, Gore (except for climate change) and Biden are at best moderate Republicans. Each would qualify as being to the right of Richard Nixon (leaving aside the issue of integrity).
In the case of Bill Clinton, Americans had not got woken to the fact that, while a little less by Democrats, the middle class was nontheless being screwed by both parties. Obama's rhetoric was enough cover to fool the public into thinking he would fight for real change. Both Gore and especially Hillary showed what the public now thinks of "moderates". Bernie Sanders and/or Elizabeth Warren are the only chances to beat Trump in 2020.
Eisenhower , 31 Jul 2019 11:13
Reparations for slavery, the elimination of private insurance, free health care for anyone who overstays a visa or walks over from Mexico, and a crystal lady.

We are in trouble. My nightmare of a Trump re-election is more and more likely.

MoonlightTiger -> BaronVonAmericano , 31 Jul 2019 11:13
I believe it is. Ha
BaronVonAmericano -> thepianist , 31 Jul 2019 11:11
The general election poses an obvious vote against Trump.

Virtually 100% of the decision-making you have about what future we might want is in the primary.

Staying out of the primary debates is tantamount to abandoning all political power.

BaronVonAmericano , 31 Jul 2019 11:05
Warren and Sanders clearly demonstrated that a party wanting to win should nominate one of them.

They enthralled the audience, and showed they possess a vision for the future that every other Democratic candidate claims to eventually want, when there's time, maybe, perhaps if they get a majority someday.

Cmank1 , 31 Jul 2019 10:54
Clearly Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren were the clear winners of the night! They shamed the listless other candidates, none of whom exhibited a similar energy, excitement & vision for the future of the country. Despite a definite veneer of displeasure by your account, both the audience at the event, and those watching at home felt the excitement of progressive proposals won the day.
KMdude , 31 Jul 2019 10:46
The winner of the debate was Trump.

When Sanders declared he's in favor of free healthcare and free education for illegal immigrants there was -at best - muted criticism from the other candidates.

Most Americans are likely outraged by this suggestion and this will play in Trump's favor.

DontFanMeBro , 31 Jul 2019 10:39
It's obvious that John Delaney is simply a plant by Big Business (which has both the centrist Democrats and all of Republicans in its pocket) to troll and derail the candidacy of progressives Sanders and Warren. His sole function is to throw a monkey wrench in their path and be a "nattering nabob of negativism" (to quote Agnew) regarding their policies. That's all he does all day and all night, and the centrist-loving moderators and journalists love giving him infinite time to do his damage
Haigin88 , 31 Jul 2019 04:42
The answer is obvious: if you want your best shot at 86-ing the orange pestilence, then it has to be Warren/Sanders or Sanders/Warren. You're not supposed to signal your vice-president until after you've got the nomination, I know, but surely having Trump as president has shredded all previous norms? Go now, right now, and say that it'll be you two. You can even keep it open and say that you don't know who'll head the ticket but it will be Warren and Sanders. That would crush all opposition and keep churning interesting as a guessing game.

Maybe Warren should head the ticket. I know that Sanders is very sharp and he plays basketball but if he was president then he'd be asking for a second term and to get sworn in when he's 83 and being in one's eighties might be too much of a psychological barrier. My suggestion, though, would be it's Sanders/Warren but on the promise that Sanders will step aside during his first term, after two years and one day (meaning that Warren could serve out the rest of the term and still then run for two more terms under her own steam).

That would guarantee the first female president and so quieten down the phoney-baloney identity politics drones; better, it would mean that the US would get an excellent leader in Elizabeth Warren, no matter her bodily organs; it would pull together the Crooked H. adherents and get them on side, if they truly care about getting female in there and if it doesn't it will expose them as the phonies they are. And it would keep matters on policy, when Trump is weak, rather than personalities, which is the territory on which Trump wants to fight.

[Aug 01, 2019] A poorly paid actor for the ruling class

Aug 01, 2019 | discussion.theguardian.com

BaronVonAmericano -> overtheseaandfaraway , 31 Jul 2019 08:28

Delaney is not a moderate, he is a poorly paid actor for the ruling class. He had a miserable debate performance, like his peers in the second tier set of candidates. That any of the press is attempting to rehabilitate his performance is a sign of extreme bias, not an accurate portrayal of the car crash that transpired last night for his campaign.
BaronVonAmericano , 31 Jul 2019 08:19
Post debate analysis is breathtaking in it's unanimity: everyone in the establishment press is doing what they can to ignore the fact that Sanders and Warren knocked it out of the park.

Contrary to the mandatory company line, this was not a debate between moderates and progressives; this was a debate between people who want to do something and those who have been hired to stall progress, and it has never been so apparent as it was in this lively debate.

I think the corporate media knows this, which is why they are desperately spinning this in any other way but that Warren and Sanders were the most viable and competent candidates on the stage.

Without question, their performance killed the candidacy of every other person on the stage.

clarityofthought -> ID9742876 , 31 Jul 2019 08:19
Thanks for a serious response (most of the others were just reactions founded on confirmation bias)

You make a good point. Even the conservatives here are on that socialist spectrum in that there is extensive state intervention (NHS, welfare, care, regulation etc). That intervention is to stay irrespective of some of the scare stories for the simple reason no one will get elected on a platform of doing away with it.

In basic terms terms the key difference between "right" and "left" is how to best pay for that state intervention. Incentives and a degree of market freedom versus a state controlled economy and more radical distribution.

So yes the term socialist is often used to scare people by the right - just as the left use "tories" to scare people ["24 hours to save the NHS" anyone?].

There is a reason why centrism has largely prevailed in the west. Its evolved in a Darwin like way as being the best balance for peoples views and expectations. I suspect radical change - left or right - will end up as a major disappointment

[Aug 01, 2019] Medicare is not healthcare. It is health insurance.

Aug 01, 2019 | discussion.theguardian.com

DanceswithSkunks , 31 Jul 2019 09:39

Sanders and Warren harp on about medicare for all being "free health care".

Let me make one thing clear: Medicare is not healthcare. It is health insurance.

Medicare administrators never touch a patient, they push paperwork around and oversee payment for services rendered by medical professionals. Throwing a third of a billion people onto a system that currently administers care for a hundred million is a recipe for disaster, especially if providers, unable to make a profit, decide to get out of the business. We already have a shortage of doctors and nurses and care facilities in many parts of the country, this is certain to make the problem worse.

What do the candidates propose to do about funding for advanced care if all people are entitled to free organ transplants? There are new cancer therapies, taylor-made for each patient, which show astonishing promise, but cost half a million dollars per patient. Medical care already eats up a sixth of our economy, want to double that? Remember, we also have to tackle climate change at the same time.

Much of Europe has socialized medicine and most European countries permit private insurance, usually as a supplement to the public system. Private patients may receive better, or at least more luxurious, care, but they also take a load off the public system. If the democrats really wanted to make life better for those on the bottom of the income spectrum, they might consider government financing of existing urgent care facilities which are popping up all over the place (there are four in my town of 35,000). Imagine being able to walk in to a "doc-in-a-box", pay $20 and get diagnosed for your flu, high blood pressure, sutures for a cut, or an X-ray for that twisted/possibly broke ankle. Currently, many such patients go to ERs where they receive treatment at many times the $90 walk-in cost of the average urgent care shop.

Consider delivering minor care at schools. Why do I have to take my kids to a doctor to get the immunizations required to attend school or sports physicals. The kids are at school, give 'em their shots and exams there. That way there will be less weaseling out.

This wouldn't be the all encompassing solution that Sanders and Warren are dreaming of, but it would represent a solid start and might intercept unwell patients before they become acute or chronic cases.

By the way, Mr Sanders, stop waving your arms about. The WSJ has a photo of you on its online edition that has you looking like an ape in a cage.

AmericanAnglo , 31 Jul 2019 09:36
Health care in the US is the most bloated, wasteful and needlessly complex issue facing US citizens today. As Bernie says it should be a human right for each citizen of the wealthiest country on earth. Americans need to understand what a socialized health system is, indeed, they need to understand what socialism is, they conflate it with communism, no one seems to want to explain the difference which would go a long way to gaining wide spread acceptance. Education is another monumental waste of resources. Far too many kids go to college who are not suited to academic endeavor, many take more than four years to graduate an undergraduate degree if they graduate at all, that is not to say they should not be provided a vocational option if they wish. A healthy and educated workforce makes social, economic, and political sense.
diesel02 -> GERALD710 , 31 Jul 2019 09:33
"Many Americans love the quality of healthcare they get."

They may love it for now but as drug prices climb, co pays climb and heaven help us ACA gets repealed then what? At least the dems, particularly the "progressives" are pulling out of the business as usual model.

Lots of folks decried FDR's New Deal, even hated it - until it put a paycheck in their hand. They could yell all they wanted about government programs but their children appreciated not starving.

Vincent Gallagher , 31 Jul 2019 06:11
Neither Warren or Sanders is advocating 'outlawing' private healthcare. That is a disingenuous term. They are offering what is common to all western democracies, universal healthcare. Obamacare is a gift to the insurance industry and not a platform for anything other than increased profit by the insurance industry. It was taken from a plan by the Heritage Foundation. It is not a legacy worth preserving, Medicare for all is the alternative and a very good one. Rich people can keep their expensive plans and continue to pay-out-the-ass, which they can easily afford.
All the blather by the conservative corporate Democrats posing as moderates is, of course, self-serving and the nonsense about concerns for union healthcare plans is absurd. I was a Union member, a chief steward, sat on the bargaining committee and was a representative to the national: universal healthcare or Medicare for all is an excellent idea, as Mr. Sanders asserts it would allow wage increases ans eliminate the biggest obstacle in contract negotiations which is the cost of health insurance. The cost of which continually was increasing by double digits, along with increases in co-pays. In fact, the increased costs forced the abandonment of what was a superior insurance plan to one that was inferior.
Delaney, is the former CEO of CapitalSource, essentially a loan-sharking operation (a testament by Forbes), involved in foreclosure scams. HealthCare Financial Partners is another Delaney entity worth examining for its less than ethical practices, which in the business world where Delaney dwells, is an unspoken word or determinant.
Delaney bundled together $800,000 for HRC, which bought him the endorsement of Bill Clinton when Delaney ran for higher office. He is conservative and wedded to the profit motive and could care less about ordinary citizens. The current businessman inhabiting the presidency is more than a cautionary tale, which applies to Delaney. He is a conservative Clintonite and embraces the rather malleable ethics of the Clintons, essentially amoral.
butmaroo -> chunkychips , 31 Jul 2019 06:11
Surely.
Douglas White , 31 Jul 2019 06:10
Honestly, only the very dimmest of dimwits would categorize ELIMINATING the $400/month average middle class families pay for Health Insurance Premiums and replacing it with a $250/Month Average payment to the government as 'raising taxes' on those people. If you doubt that, ask yourself why the largest corporations AREN'T screaming about 'raised taxes' if we go to Medicare for All.... it's because they can do the math, and they know that eliminating the $750/month average that THEY pay in Premium contributions PER EMPLOYEE will benefit them much more than the accompanying 'tax increase for M4A...

When the OVERALL COST of the system goes down around 15% (Private Insurance 'overhead' increases costs 20%+, Medicare is just under 6%), EVERYONE saves in the long run....

[Aug 01, 2019] Biden's key advantage is his appeal to the affluent white middle class secret Trump supporters who came out in droves.

Aug 01, 2019 | discussion.theguardian.com

ID9059125 -> Uriel238 , 31 Jul 2019 10:14

You're wrong. A Neocon will bridge the divide between what we have now (Full on Crazy Town Heading for WW3) and what a Biden/Klobuchar could lead to: Eg - a Warren or a Beto.
Gives people time to realize "hey. this cheaper health care and no student fees and $15 dollar minimum wage aint so bad!!!" <face palm>
ID9059125 -> jaytjohnson , 31 Jul 2019 10:11
Biden's key advantage is his appeal to the affluent white middle class secret Trump supporters who came out in droves.
A Biden/Klobuchar ticket could be the strongest "right wing" combination for the Dems.
ID9059125 , 31 Jul 2019 10:02
As an overall observation and the way these debates are promoted and run, how depressing they are as a commentary on America. It's turned into a sporting, showbiz event, each candidate given one pesky minute to try and get something across.
Short doses for America's short attention span. Let's just be done with it and combine the f****** election with an episode of The Bachelor or f****** Kardashians. It makes me sick.
SamDobermann -> ScoundrelDaysSon , 31 Jul 2019 09:59
Before a "Medicare for All" (M4A) bill got near a vote there would be massive negative advertising against it. Don't you remember when we were working on getting the ACA passed how the "Tea Party" was formed -- with plenty of $$ from those opposed to any changes in health care provisioning & financing -- & they went into insane rages & attacks? We got the T-Party Republicans out of it who still bedevil us today.

The NHS was born out of WWII when Britain had to provide hospitals & clinics all around the country because so many people were pushed out of London & into the boonies. More building occurred centrally to care for the military & vets so there were government owned facilities everywhere.

Here in the US the veteran's Medical facilities are totally separate & jealously held so & if Bernie wants to fold them into his scheme he'll have to go over or through the bodies of all the Vets in America who feel they've earned their care.

A third of all the people in Medicare have *chosen to use a privatized version* which while it limits choice of providers has some added goodies like health clubs. They will fight change as will people with retirement programs that they "earned."

Your last statement actually is astute: "I genuinely believe that unless the slate is completely wiped clean in the short to medium term you'll never have Medicare for all work, last, or garner public support in the way of the NHS, say."

That's true. Truly you can't get there from here. Britain had no system provisioning health care for people in general. They had an almost blank slate. They didn't have to take away something of value from millions of people. That is what Obama knew. You can add on, you can work on underlying problems, you can augment and improve coverage but you can't trash the whole system that so many people rely on.

We need universal coverage for all that want it. There will always be some left out. (Can you mention Trumps & other ultra rich taking part in any insurance for the peasantry). Medicare which has been in existence for 50 years (with much tinkering along the way) covers just 95% of seniors; 5% are completely left out. If you use that as an analogy we would find 5% of 330 million or about 16 million won't be covered AT BEST.

[Aug 01, 2019] Biden thinks we can win a war with Russia. That is insane.

Aug 01, 2019 | discussion.theguardian.com

curiouswes -> ildfluer , 31 Jul 2019 07:29

Please


As much as I have stated how badly I want Trump impeached, I honestly think Biden would be worse for America and the world, than Trump. Biden thinks we can win a war with Russia. That is insane. No sane person wants nuclear holocaust. However Biden thinks these neoliberal propensities can continue without consequence.

Tulsi understands that you can't keep poking Russia with a stick. If you recall, HRC wanted to set up a no fly zone over Syria while Russia was flying combat missions in Syria. That is the type of neoliberal bullshit that can lead to nuclear holocaust. If you have the time watch this old video

If you took the time to watch the video, you should be able to see how the CIA will resume its effort under Biden and Biden's vision is clear from this article he wrote just last year .

[Aug 01, 2019] The USA curiosities: so-called centre-left in the USA are establishment right-wing in Europe

Aug 01, 2019 | discussion.theguardian.com

Lagado , 31 Jul 2019 05:27

The Democrats are considered "Moderate republicans" and have been for a number of years. So the moderate moderate democrats are effectively republicans. Just like the so-called centre-left here, are establishment right-wing.

[Aug 01, 2019] Jack1917

Aug 01, 2019 | profile.theguardian.com

31 Jul 2019 06:43

"And again I say unto you, It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God." -Matthew 19:24

That either Bernie Sanders or Elizabeth Warren might be considered left-wing is a mark of how skewed American politics is. Where the hell's the center!? And who decided, anyway?

When asked where the phrase "from each according to his abilities, to each according to his needs" came from by a 2002 survey conducted by Columbia Law School, over 66% of Americans said the US Constitution.

[Aug 01, 2019] It's a bit hard to celebrate democracy in our land of political farce

Marianne Williamson for the Secretary of Happiness :-)
Jul 31, 2019 | discussion.theguardian.com

IndigoBleak , 31 Jul 2019 17:21

CNN retained control of what issues were addressed and when rather than the candidates, so the "clash" between the "moderate" and "progressive" wings of the party was largely orchestrated by the network. Given the number of candidates involved and the structure of what passes for debate during these spectacles they're largely a waste of time.
luciddays , 31 Jul 2019 17:29
The inevitable question in any US election is can the candidates really change anything? for all of the squealing about Trump he hasn't managed to do anything except give the rich a tax cut.

The out of control military spending, the growing void between those born rich and those born poor, the further consolidation of Corporate power...all seems to go unchecked regardless of the rhetoric of any President

Mary B -> Quantum Ape , 31 Jul 2019 13:06

Watch an interview with Corruptus Maximus from the 1980s or early 90s. He was always a dick and a narcissist, but he was articulate and able to speak in full sentences and follow a conversation. He can't do any of that now. Little Donnie Dumbass is the poster boy for cognitive decline.

[Jul 31, 2019] Kamala Harris discovered that roasting Establishment candidate Biden early on didn't help her in the end.

Jul 31, 2019 | discussion.theguardian.com

ildfluer -> Canajin , 31 Jul 2019 22:26

They're trying to get rid of Harris and Biden. I'm not sure it's a bad thing. Harris was always going to get drowned by her own record as California's AG. And Biden... meh.
ildfluer -> SilverTui , 31 Jul 2019 20:03
One of them. Warren eviscerating Delaney was another. Or her saying that Democrats are not the Republicans, wanting to take healthcare away... Then, there was Buttigieg saying that no matter what they do, the Republicans would call them socialists anyway, so who cares.
Aldous0rwell , 31 Jul 2019 19:55
Kabaservice's comment:

...whether the Democrats will end up moving too far to the left to be able to defeat Trump in 2020...

reflects a poorly conceived (false) dichotomy about what "the left" is. When he says "the left" what does he even mean?

There's the socialist left , which seeks to provide good working conditions and pay, and better wealth distributions among the populace. This could be a huge boon to any group suffering under the current economic system - including groups which Trump appealed to in the last election but has utterly failed to do anything for.

There's the identity politics left which Hillary and the Neo-liberals (and the Republicans, actually) embrace as a form of marketing strategy and use to promote free-market ideology.

There's the "Democrat Party" (DNC) left which really stands for little more than party rhetoric any more and vehemently supports Neo-liberalism.

And there's the environmentalist left which sees Global Climate destabilization as the #1 issue facing the planet (a position loathed by the Neo-liberals and identitarians).

There are also combinations and permutations of all these "lefts".

So when Kabaservice says he fears the Democrats moving too far to the left, he's conflating all sorts of things, murkily hiding his intents behind his ill-defined terminology.

ildfluer -> goulot , 31 Jul 2019 19:55
He was about to drop out of the race before the debate. He should've done so, Warren eviscerated him.
ildfluer -> MohammedS , 31 Jul 2019 19:36
There are over 20 candidates. They need to tread carefully. Kamala Harris discovered that roasting Establishment candidate Biden early on didn't help her in the end.
ildfluer -> jimmsfairytales0com , 31 Jul 2019 19:30
The weirdos/corporate-shrills in the media are all slamming Sanders for his grumpiness and 'shouting'. I mean, the man is angry that people are dying because the Govt isn't looking after them. How's that a minus against Sanders's personality??? Everyone should be mad as hell. I'm a big fan of Warren but no-one can dispute that Sanders is a good man.
salsabil , 31 Jul 2019 18:50
Delaney - the multi millionaire - looked like he had been entrusted by CNN (and probably the DNC) to be the first of many attack dogs against Sanders and Warren. He was probably meant to appear the voice of reason, speaking rational politics to make make them seem like extremists, but he came across as dumb and sounded like a spokesperson for the very vested interests that will be threatened most by Sanders´ and Warren´s plans. And that gormless face will surely be the subject of memes for years to come!

I think I read somewhere that 87% of US elections are won by the candidate with the most money. And since most money comes from the millionaires and their lobbyists the DNC establishment clearly would rather work for those with most, than for those in most need. A bit like the Blairite nest within Corbyn´s Labour Party. And what John Delaney was saying was exactly why ordinary people are so disillusioned with regular politicians - especially those of the so-called ´left´- and why they become so easily taken-in by populists like Trump.

When the right get in they always do stuff for their paymasters. Big stuff. They steal public funds through tax cuts for the rich and the corporations. They repeal protections for workers, and allow Big Oil to destroy the environment. They bloat the budget for the military industrial complex and allow the US Military machine to be used as a private army for the corporations´insatiable resource grab. And they let Wall Street do what it wants.

When the so called parties of the left get in - be they Democrats, Labour, SPD or whoever -they usually do diddly squat. Because deals have usually been made not to shake anything up. Not even to correct the injustices enacted by their predecessors. I saw a stat about US government tax revenues that showed how 50 years ago 33% came from companies and only about 10% came from incomes; today those numbers are reversed. It´s no wonder millions are becoming desperate for change.

I´m sure the DNC and its paymasters will no doubt try to learn something from the debate, to better prep Joe Biden when he steps into the ring, probably against Sanders OR Warren. I can´t see him going up against both of them. But also to better rig future debates against Sanders and Warren, perhaps to try to divide them. Though, to be fair to CNN, they did a pretty good job. But it clearly failed.

What will be interesting will be watching how the adult-in-room MSM switches from incessant Trump bashing to doing everything it can to stop Sanders and Warren. I fear that it will get dirty, and relentless, and both will be attacked, labelled and misrepresented. But if a moderate candidate - like Honest Joe Biden - is jerrymandered into position up against Trump in 2020 then I fear that we are all fucked.

This is the last chance.

That goes for you too Guardian.

circuit -> daguard41 , 31 Jul 2019 14:31
Warren/Sanders. Everyone else looks Republican-Lite, or corporate shill.

[Jul 29, 2019] The great antisemitism witchhunt McCarthyism redux by John Wight

Notable quotes:
"... Reds under the bed has been replaced with antisemites under the bed; this with the full and open complicity of a mainstream media whose dread over the prospect of transformational political change is entwined in tight embrace with that of an Establishment -- political and security -- in ensuring nothing but nothing will ever change in this country apart from the colour of the curtains on the windows in Downing Street. ..."
"... There is nothing more grotesque than being lectured to about antisemitism, or any other form of racism, by apologists for a racist apartheid state. Yet this grotesquerie is precisely where we have arrived at in response to Corbyn's unlikely elevation to the leadership of the Labour Party. ..."
"... I think one has to appreciate, despite all the 'far-left' labels stuck on him, that Corbyn only appeared to be a 'raving looney leftie' in comparison with the rightwing Blairite majority of MPs who've controlled the Labour Party for so long and capitulated to and followed a Thatcherite political agenda, for decades. ..."
"... Anti-semitism oldest form of gas lighting that was ever created in the western world especially after the second world war. If one were to go to Palestine it is not uncommon to find some ebraic semite wearing a t shirt with on it printed an IDF soldier taking aim at a pregnant arab semite. Israel has to be exposed for what it is. It is an anglo-zionist colonial outpost.. Zionism was born in England it pre dates Herzl. ..."
"... The key to the anti-Semitism problem is the conflation of Judaism with Zionism. This didn't happen by accident, it is a deliberate and relatively modern policy. (An old (Jewish) friend described the indoctrination he got to me growing up. That was quite a long time ago, its probably so ingrained now that nobody notices this process any more.) ..."
"... The comparison to a witch hunt is perfectly accurate. The attack works by mere accusation. The facts, evidence, criteria of evaluation are all irrelevant. ..."
Jun 29, 2019 | OffGuardian
This article was first published on March 1st of this year, however, it is given fresh relevance in the wake of Labour's reinstatement, and then re-suspension, of Derby MP Chris Williamson

Photo: The Crucible at the Pacific Conservatory Theatre

PUTNAM: Now look you, sir. Let you strike out against the Devil, and the village will bless you for it! Come down, speak to them -- pray with them. They're thirsting for your word, Mister! Surely you'll pray with them.

PARRIS: (swayed) I'll lead them in a psalm, but let you say nothing of witchcraft yet. I will not discuss it. The cause is yet unknown. I have had enough contention since I came; I want no more.
Arthur Miller – The Crucible

In his magisterial autobiography, Timebends , describing his motivation behind his classic work The Crucible (extracted above) -- the most compelling and enduring allegorical piece of drama to grace the American theatre -- Arthur Miller reveals the following:

What I sought was a metaphor, an image that would spring out of the heart, all-inclusive, full of light, a sonorous instrument whose reverberations would penetrate to the centre of this miasma. For if the current degeneration of discourse continued, as I had every reason to believe it would, we could no longer be a democracy, a system that requires a certain basic trust in order to exist."

The 'miasma' referred to by Miller in the above passage was the atmosphere of censorious paranoia whipped up by the anti-Communist witchhunts of the 1940s and 1950s, starting under the auspices of the House Un-American Activities Committee (HUAC), established in 1938, joined thereafter by Senator Joseph McCarthy's Senate hearings into alleged Communist infiltration from the late 1940s.

The period concerned, commonly referred to as McCarthyism, illuminated the parameters of free speech and expression in a country and culture which prides itself on both. It drilled home the profound truth that tyranny is less the by-product of totalitarian political systems and more the product of totalitarian ideas and nostrums that sustain political orthodoxy in a given space and time. And, too, whenever those ideas and nostrums come under challenge, said democracy is exposed as a cloak behind which mendacity resides, ruthlessly seeking malcontents to expose and miscreants to punish.

In Britain in 2019 we need no longer turn to US history for an understanding of McCarthyism and its execrable fruits.

For in Britain in 2019 McCarthyism is with us and among us, corroding our public and political discourse, poisoning it with the untruths, lies and mendacious smears of some of the most malignant political forces that ever existed in these islands.

Reds under the bed has been replaced with antisemites under the bed; this with the full and open complicity of a mainstream media whose dread over the prospect of transformational political change is entwined in tight embrace with that of an Establishment -- political and security -- in ensuring nothing but nothing will ever change in this country apart from the colour of the curtains on the windows in Downing Street.

Jeremy Corbyn's leadership of the Labour Party has to intents been usurped by his deputy Tom Watson, a man for whom Shakespeare's "Hell is empty, and all the devils are here!" line from The Tempest could have been written with in mind.

Labour Friends of Israel

Watson is the Labour Party's Matthew Hopkins, the infamous witch-hunter whose reign of terror in 17th century Britain finds its metaphorical equivalent in the 21st century with the objective not of locating and hanging out to dry antisemites but instead anti-Zionists, which means to say genuine anti-racists.

For what is Zionism if not racism, a species of white supremacy responsible for relegating the humanity of five million men, women and children of the illegally occupied West Bank and besieged Gaza Strip to that of latter-day Helots?

Adding to the mountain of intellectual and moral ordure erected in service to this miasma of untruth and base hypocrisy, are the findings of a UN investigation into the Palestinians killed and wounded by Israeli snipers during last year's Great Return March in Gaza.

According to the UN's Santiago Canton:

Israeli soldiers committed violations of international human rights and humanitarian law. Some of those violations may constitute war crimes or crimes against humanity."

In diplomatic-speak, Mr Canton is here referencing the manner in which Israeli soldiers shot down dozens of unarmed Palestinians -- among them children, medics and journalists -- like deer in a forest, with some of those Israeli soldiers caught on tape laughing and celebrating their 'kills'.

It is to this monstrosity of an apartheid state Tom Watson and his friends are giving succour and sanction; and it this supremacist juggernaut of oppression we are expected to accept as compatible with left-wing progressive values.

There is nothing more grotesque than being lectured to about antisemitism, or any other form of racism, by apologists for a racist apartheid state. Yet this grotesquerie is precisely where we have arrived at in response to Corbyn's unlikely elevation to the leadership of the Labour Party.

His legacy as a staunch supporter of Palestinian human rights and self-determination has been weaponised against him and his supporters by a pro-Israel lobby within and without the Labour Party, plumbing depths of indecency last witnessed during the era of McCarthyism across the Atlantic.

For those who doubt how deeply entrenched the pro-Israel lobby now is within the UK body politic, Al Jazeera's blistering documentary The Lobby is required viewing.

Given the context and the stakes involved in this ongoing witch hunt and smear campaign, the lack of meaningful resistance on the part of Corbyn is unconscionable; his refusal to mobilise his base in the face of it inexplicable. The result has not been to see it disappear but for it to prosper and grow in ferocity.

Be under no illusion either of the complicity of key figures in and around the Labour leadership in whipping up and/or acquiescing in this baseless hysteria -- Lansman, McDonnell et al. -- to the point where Corbyn has been rendered well nigh unelectable as a prospective prime minister.

That this is a smear campaign and witchhunt conducted, regardless of the fog of obfuscation deployed to the contrary, on behalf of a foreign power -- and an apartheid power at that -- compounds the offence.

But this issue is now bigger than Corbyn. It is about where we stand on matters of intellectual and moral integrity; and most of all on the rights we accrue to an oppressed people and those of their oppressor. Future generations are watching and waiting for the stance that we take.

Arthur Miller understood this, which is why his light will shine forever bright as a beacon of moral courage in an age of deceit.

End.


Ben Trovata

"They misunderestimated me."George Bush,the Younger,Nov. 6, 2000.

I'll not supply any facts. None whatsoever,saying only: Corbyn( I believe) is made of better material. Blairites must be expelled, or otherwise, go away!

MichaelK
I think one has to appreciate, despite all the 'far-left' labels stuck on him, that Corbyn only appeared to be a 'raving looney leftie' in comparison with the rightwing Blairite majority of MPs who've controlled the Labour Party for so long and capitulated to and followed a Thatcherite political agenda, for decades.

Corbyn himself isn't really a 'revolutionary' or even a radical. He's what half a century ago would have been described as a pretty normal, middle-of-the-road, Labour social democrat, barely on the left of the Party at all. But some of this is debatable, depending on where one stands on the spectrum personally. It's a sign of how far 'left' politics and 'left' discourse has degenerated in the UK, and political culture's moved so far to the right, that Corbyn, like a relic of a bygone era, is perceived as far more leftwing than he actually is, in reality.

What he is though, is ineffective as a leader. He lacks authority, I think, because he fundamentally lacks a set of strong ideas that show what he stands for and where he wants the country to move. There's no real narrative that mobilises support for him, and this is the curse of Labour; the leadership's fear of mobilising the membership and their supporters and votes in the country, too much and too far, which could easily lead to them raising their expectations way beyond what's 'realistic' and possible within the boundaries of bourgeois liberal democracy. Labour fought for political power in parliament; but didn't believe in openly challenging economic power in society in any meaningful way, because that strategy was simply not allowed because it was 'revolutionary' and not reformist.

mark
Of course Corbyn is a "raving loony lefty."
He wants to re nationalise the railways (maybe.)
And build a few council houses (maybe.)
How raving loony is that?
Obviously he's a raving loony.
Oh, and he objects to the genocide of the Palestinians.
Obviously a raving anti semite as well.
Just ask the Board of Deputies and Margaret Hodge and the Daily Mail. They'll explain it all to you.
Barovsky
More to the point; he's a (Labour) Party man. The Party comes first, regardless. For almost 130 years the Labour Party has been an integral part of British capitalism and imperialism and the British state. Thus Corbyn, a run-of-the-mill social democrat is concerned only with the survival of the Party and he will do whatever is necessary in its defence including defenestrating his election manifesto (compare his draft with the one finally circulated in 2017)!

Should he by some chance actually end up as PM, what are the odds of him actually reversing austerity when he's already sold out over every key part of his original manifesto?

There are going to be a lot of very disappointed and once more disconnected Labour voters.

mathias alexand
What is this "leadership" and "authority" thing? As for his ideas he could have any number of them that you will never hear about in the MSM.
Maggie
True Mathias, but you can see and hear about them on the Jimmy Dore Show whose shows truly are a breath of fresh air:

Bernie Sanders of Britain and why he is widely loved, and sadly rare. July 2016

https://www.youtube.com/embed/a29WF44jDug?version=3&rel=1&fs=1&autohide=2&showsearch=0&showinfo=1&iv_load_policy=1&wmode=transparent

Labour Party Platform, Amazingly specific and pro worker. May 2017

https://www.youtube.com/embed/vI073wq2zKY?version=3&rel=1&fs=1&autohide=2&showsearch=0&showinfo=1&iv_load_policy=1&wmode=transparent

Jeremy Corbyn Delivers Inspiring Speech June 2017

https://www.youtube.com/embed/8RsSPOcVcNM Wimbledon issues ban on chanting Jeremy Corbyn July 2017

https://www.youtube.com/embed/0MwqZkBOEz0 Pro Jeremy Corbyn ad makes Right wingers cry.July 2017

https://www.youtube.com/embed/ptC-0_gObNM NBC News Smears Jeremy Corbyn as an anti semite. July 2017

https://www.youtube.com/embed/F4d-ZAPx1q4 BBC Andrew Neil smashes Jeremy Corbyn Smear on Live TV Feb 2018

https://www.youtube.com/embed/IJZkYDYh37U Corbyn responds rationally to Russian nerve attack and is immediately smeared March 2018

https://www.youtube.com/embed/OsnAIUZIt8M Corbyn smeared as anti semite for attacking Bankers. September 2018
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X9US9v0ndus

And on and on it goes, and the sh*t does stick. For the majority of people eventually just cave in and believe this Zionist garbage.

falcemartello
Anti-semitism oldest form of gas lighting that was ever created in the western world especially after the second world war. If one were to go to Palestine it is not uncommon to find some ebraic semite wearing a t shirt with on it printed an IDF soldier taking aim at a pregnant arab semite. Israel has to be exposed for what it is. It is an anglo-zionist colonial outpost.. Zionism was born in England it pre dates Herzl.

Hence until more exposure of the brutal nature of the Israeli zionist and their parents the anglo-zionist becomes exposed then the diluted term of anti semite will continue to be used. I find that with the dying western paradigm so will this gaslighting term become irrelevant .If any intellectual honesty were to be used the real anti semites are the zionist.

Post Scriptum : Israel has a shelf life and it is omploding with in hence so will zionism.

Having experience racism first hand growing up and still being exposed to it today for mhy ethnicity I am not fortunate enough as the ashkanazi /zionist to deflect and gaslight my oppressors.

harry law
Former South African Minister Ronnie Kasrils himself Jewish on Thursday accused Israel of conducting a policy against the Palestinians that was "worse" than apartheid.

Speaking on the sidelines of a UN meeting on the situation in the Palestinian territories, Kasrils said South Africa's townships had never been attacked by helicopter gunships and tanks, in contrast to the military means employed by Israel.

https://www.iol.co.za/news/politics/israel-worse-than-apartheid-sa-kasrils-352481

andyoldlabour
Labour Friends of Israel, Conservative Friends of Israel, Liberal Democrat Friends of Israel – all different organisations?

No, of course they are not, even if the ordinary man in the street may think so.

They are all controlled by the Israeli state, to do the bidding of that state, to demonise any person who shows empathy with the plight of the Palestinian people, any person who dares criticise the actions of the Israeli state.

On the other hand, you have Jewish Friends of Labour, seen by the Israeli state as "self hating Jews", the "wrong type of Jew".
What we are seeing at the moment is – Zio-McCarthyism.

Capricornia Man
'McCarthyism' is exactly what I have been calling the witch-hunt for some time. It's surprising that the term is taking so long to come into general use when it is the appropriate term based on historical analogy, as shown by the article. The pile-on against anyone who dares to support the political and national rights of the Palestinians induces physical illness in anyone remotely interested in justice and truth.

The rancid 'liberal' media frames its "coverage" by treating accusations of 'antisemitism' not as the thing which has to be proved, but as the proof itself. A classic McCarthyite process.

The vast majority of Britons must be fed up having their politics held up to ransom in this manner. Stand up for yourselves and by-pass the fifth column and the coward element in the Labour Party.

vwbeetle
To read the Guardian, one would think that Williamson has no supporters in Labour whatsoever. As far as the Guardian is concerned, Jewish Voice for Labour and its condemnation of the witch hunt and smear campaign against Corbyn and Williamson and anyone who supports Palestinian rights, does not exist. Up until a couple of years ago I was a regular contributor on CIF discussion threads, largely rebutting Zionists and their propaganda and outright lies. I was eventually blocked, probably because large numbers of Zionists reported me, despite the fact that I largely restricted my posts to historical facts. Over the past two years it is almost impossible to make comments on CIF about any article about Israel/Palestine, or the anti-semitism smear campaign. What has happened at the Guardian? Does anyone know why the paper seems to have changed course?
MichaelK
The lurch to the political right at the Guardian is linked to the Snowden and Assange revelations that challenged the cosy ideological relationship between the media and the state, to a degree that is simply not allowed, if one wants to be seen as loyal and responsible. There are consequences is one, as an individual, group or institution, is perceived as being illoyal by the Establishment and the state.

Assange and Snowden pulled the Guardian over an invisible line, into a grey area, at the time, which was perceived as being tantamount to treason, and now the Guardian has been successfully reined in once more and now co-opperates with the state on matters relating to 'national security.' The damage, has been undone and a proper and reasonable relationship established.

Haltonbrat
The Guardian has been pro-Zionist since the days of editor CP Scott who introduced the Zionist leader to Looyd George and supported the Zionists in his writings in the Manchester Guardian.
Shardlake
It all changed, and not for the better, after Alan Rusbridger left. It's as much a mouthpiece now for this appalling government as the Murdoch press and their like. There's been a continual shift in centre ground politics to the right since the days of Thatcher.

We are seeing what Edward Bernays described in 1928 as the conscious and intelligent manipulation of the organised habits and opinions of the masses is an important element in democratic society.

Those who manipulate this unseen mechanism of society constitute an invisible government which is the true ruling power of our country.

We are governed, our minds are moulded, our tastes formed, our ideas suggested largely by men we have never heard of.

In almost every act of our daily lives, whether in the sphere of politics or business, in our social conduct or our ethical thinking, we are dominated by the relatively small number of persons who understand the mental processes and social patterns of the masses.

It is they who pull the wires which control the public mind.

Stephen Morrell
PS. The Labour Party never fails to disappoint
Stephen Morrell
It's time to stop calling Israel an 'apartheid state'. Snipers today, missiles and bombs tomorrow, with deliberate and active ruination of amenity, infrastructure and the means to live -- by siege, every day.

Israel's atrocities are not simply 'crimes against humanity'. They're crimes directed against a particular ethnic/national/racial segment of humanity. That's called genocide. Netanyahu and his gang are genocidal, and consequently the garrison state of Israel is also a 'genocide state'. Time to start applying the g-word.

Haltonbrat
Yes, The actions of Israel meet the UN definition of genocide.
mark
The Times of Israel, a national newspaper, quite openly advocated genocide. It called for the Palestinian people to be exterminated at concentration camps in the desert. The "Justice" Minister, a woman called Shaked, called for Palestinian mothers to be exterminated, so that no Palestinian children could be born. Two rabbis in Israel published a book called "The King's Torah." It called for all Palestinian children to be murdered.

Killing a goy, any goy, is a Mitzvah, a praiseworthy act.

If the Jews get the war with Iran they have been trying to incite and agitate for for so long, they will use this as cover to carry out actual genocide on a massive scale.

People need to give up completely on Labour. It is infested wall to wall with 30 shekel whores.

maggie
Hi Mark, Do you have links to the information you have posted please.

If we give up on Labour, then who do we rely on? I think what we should be doing is focussing all our energies on removing (de selecting) the 90 "friends of Israhell" who have been baying for Chris Williamson and Jeremy Corbyn to be removed permanently from the Labour Party. Beginning with the evil with Hodge, and her cronies headed by Tom Watson.

mark
The Times of Israel, 1/8/14.
"When Genocide Is Permissible", by Yochanan Gordon.
Openly advocates, endorses and justifies the genocide of the Palestinians.

Ayelet Shaked, 14/7/14.
"Mothers of all Palestinians should be killed. They have to die and their houses should be demolished. They are all our enemies and their blood should be on our hands."
A day before Palestinian teenager Muhammad Abu Khudair was kidnapped and burned alive by 6 Jew thugs, Shaked published a call for the genocide of the Palestinians in Facebook.
"The entire Palestinian people is the enemy, including its elderly and its women, its cities and its villages, its property and its infrastructure."
She called for the slaughter of Palestinian mothers. "to prevent them giving birth to little snakes."

The King's Torah, 230 page book published 2009 by Od Yosef Chai Yeshiva. Authors Rabbis Yitzhak Shapira and Yosef Elitzur. Endorsed by many leading rabbis.
It openly incites and calls for the extermination of the Palestinians, and explains how this is morally justified.
It is a call for indiscriminate extermination.
The killing of children, en masse, responds to "the existence of an internal need for revenge."
"In the face of revenge, no one is innocent, be they old, young, children, men or women, and regardless of their health."
It rejects any notion of international law and the protection of civilians in time of war, or international humanitarian law on the prevention of genocide. Israel is above international law, because Jews are superior to Gentiles and the lives of Gentiles have no value.

Jews are indoctrinated from birth to hate all the goyim.
Israel is an openly genocidal, terrorist, racist state.
There is no doubt that in the event of a major war with Iran, it would use this as cover to commit genocide, which has been long planned.

Stephen Morrell
I apologise for taking up so much space in replying to your very telling question about what alternative is there to Labour. First, it should now be clear to everyone that Labour, whether led by Corbyn or any other 'left' social democrat, is no answer to the dire situation we face. Right now there is no mass party on this planet that can provide the leadership necessary, let alone serve as the instrument, for the revolutionary change so desperately needed to excise the malignancy of capitalism from the human social organism. This is a crisis of revolutionary leadership.

The bourgeois Greens are not the answer either, and most of the traditional left and 'far' left are mired in one form or another of opportunistic kow-towing to Corbyn and Labour or the Greens. This isn't to say that one should never vote Labour, the party of the working class. It's to say that one should only give support to Labour, as 'a rope supports a hanging man' (Lenin), when it furthers revolutionary and class consciousness in the working class. The working class, as politically backward as it might be now in many ways, is the only class with the social power to overthrow the capitalists -- it can stop and start production at will and, most importantly, if it had the political consciousness and leadership to do so, it could take over production and overthrow capitalism. Such a consciousness is smothered and suppressed by Labour and the current leaders of the trade unions (such as the latter currently exist).

Presently Labour deserves no vote because under Corbyn they've refused to support Brexit and are pushing for a second referendum. Tony Benn, Corbyn's mentor, would have been railing against him over his betrayal of this fundamental class issue in Britain. Corbyn is Blair lite. On the EU he's Blair quiet.

If in power, Corbyn would either be forced to bow to the diktats of capital and the ruling class or be pushed out, and pronto. Already forces centred on MI6's The Guardian, the Zionist lobby, the aristocratic feudal relics, the military, 'the City' rentiers, and of course the Blairites, have been undermining him because of his mild reformist and foreign policy stances. However, the ruling class would rush to Corbyn and Labour, or another 'left' alternative, if their rule were seriously threatened by an awakened working class. Before fascism, Corbyn would be their best and last hope.

What then of the left and far left? They're all still propaganda groups. We have the likes of the SP, SWP, Socialist Alternative and so on, who've advocated a vote for Labour unconditionally at just about every election. And they've also supported the bourgeois Greens. In doing so, they provide no alternative to Labour. Instead their strategy is to try to pressure Labour to the left. How's that been working? Corbyn still supports the EU. How many times has he mentioned Julian Assange? Or the basic necessity to do away with the monarchy and House of Lords and all the other 'traditions of the dead generations [that] weigh like a nightmare upon the living' (Marx). At least in the US, the ISO (followers of the late Tony Cliff) have decided to sate their opportunistic appetites and dissolve themselves to join the Democratic Socialists of America (ie, social democrats inside a bourgeois party, the Democratic Party of Hiroshima and Nagasaki).

Then we have the Socialist Equity Party, ostensibly 'Trotskyist' and followers of David North, that declares trade unions in principle to be an instrument for the subjugation of the working class. Imagine that: the prime defense organs of the working class historically are written off in advance because their leaderships betray the rank and file (which they do, but not always, not inevitably). Outfits like the SEP don't have a perspective to take these trade union leaderships on from within and fight to replace them with a revolutionary leadership in the heat of struggle to turn the unions into real working class defense organs.

Consequently, a revolutionary consciousness cannot be developed from within the working class in struggle for it to act in its own historic interests. The SEP have a slew of other programmatic issues that are awry as well, but their outlook boils down to opportunism afraid of itself.

This isn't to say that the World Socialist Website is completely useless. It isn't, but its articles on workers and trade union struggles in particular need to be taken with a large grain of salt.

In short, if there are only propaganda groups at the moment that pose an alternative to Labour, then it at least behoves those looking for an alternative to Labour to not waste time or effort on any group that can't get even the basics of a program right, let alone before they even dirty their hands in actual struggle.

What's left then? Right now, the first criteria to look out for is if an ostensibly revolutionary group advocates 'No vote to Labour', and draws a class line for Brexit and against a new referendum; one that works consistently to destroy any illusions in the bourgeois state and its parliament ever being 'reformed' to act in the interests of the working class -- which means also exposing those who do. That's pretty fundamental, but it's a start.

So far the only group that does these things in the UK is the Spartacist League of Britain. See:
https://www.icl-fi.org/english/wh/index.html
and
https://www.icl-fi.org/english/wv/1157/brexit.html

mark
Very shrewd assessment. But I'd say a re run of pre war Weimar is the most likely outcome. People are far more likely to turn to far worse than Trump or Farage as things deteriorate. Expect to see more Zionist controlled opposition like the EDL.
maggie
Mmm.. Stephen, a very interesting reply.. and links, which I will read and try to digest, though I have to confess a lot of the information contained therein, at 'first glance' I thought had been tried, tested and failed owing to the avarice of the capitalists and their power to remove the ground from under our feet.
This may be the wrong interpretation? But I will read the links more thoroughly and try to get my head around the concepts.

What I think we could do immediately, is to have the one man one vote system, to elect the 'man/woman' we choose to represent us and dispense with 'parties' altogether.
Surely, it can't be that difficult with today's technology, which would automatically dispense with the ballot box and the inherent frauds that continually happen.
Or am I being too simplistic and naοve?
Then again.. isn't this just the Russian system, and was that of Libya?

Stephen Morrell
The organs of power that spring up during revolutions are what work at the time. They're not created a priori, but they go on to serve the basis for the exercise of mass democracy. The Paris Commune had the The Committee of Public Safety, Russia had soviets (Russian for workers' council) that first arose in 1905 and again in 1917. The basis for their power rests on a politically conscious and armed constituency that has risen up which can recall elected representatives at any time (because they're armed).

Soviets elect representatives to higher soviet bodies (collegiate system), but their main purpose is to decide and vote on what, not whom. On an economic plan for example.

In contrast, bourgeois democracy at most gives you the privilege of voting for which scumbag will oppress you for the next 4 or 5 years. This is not to denigrate democratic rights but it is the way capitalist rule is disguised and legitimated; and we're made to feel responsible for outcomes because we participated in voting in elections. We help the executioner load his gun. One should never confuse elections with democracy.

I can recommend the following reading list which might help:

EH Carr, "What is History" (a great, broad-brushed approach to understanding different stages in human history and development).

K Marx, F Engels, "The Communist Manifesto"

F Engels, "Socialism Utopian and Scientific"

VI Lenin, "What Is To Be Done" (On the need for a party of the Bolshevik type)

VI Lenin, "State and Revolution" (On why the existing state must be smashed replaced by a new one, and what happens to it after a socialist revolution)

LD Trotsky, "Lessons of October" (On why the revolution occurred in backward Russia and not Germany)

LD Trotsky, "Results and Prospects" (On why backward countries in the epoch of imperialism not being able make a bourgeois revolution whose tasks can only be accomplished by a proletarian revolution -- the theory of 'Permanent Revolution')

LD Trotsky, "The Revolution Betrayed" (Why Stalin arose and soviet democracy was smashed in the USSR)

Some of these are a little heavy going and polemical (eg, Lenin), and Marx is full of historical and literary references, but patience will be rewarded. Except for EH Carr (available as a Penguin classic), these can all be accessed at: https://www.marxists.org/

espartaco
Too much ado about nothing It is very simple Socialism has NOTHING to do with religion Judaism, Christianism, Islamism or whatever. They invite these kind problems because the bourgeois that control Labour, allowed every kind of minorities to infiltrate the Party (and all other parties) to, eventually, destroy it through religious, racial and minority wars. What you see is what you get when leftist minoritymongering has taken over politics. The solution is very simple, all religious groups should be thrown out of the party, together with all the bourgeois. MP's first !!!
lundiel
I agree. We currently have MPs of all parties acting as agents for their countries of birth, or as agents of third countries (Ms Smeeth). This worked when they (agents) had no real political power, they were limited to cultural exchange visits etc. The change came with the growth in size and power of our security services .there's more than one way to skin a cat like Corbyn!
Maggie
Fear not Lundiel, the work is already begun . Jeremy will NEVER be allowed to lead.

Anonymous 'Civil Servants' (Deep State Operatives) have briefed the media regarding the allegedly frail condition of possible PM-to-be Jeremy Corbyn on the basis of – no evidence whatever.
Understandably, Corbyn is very angry about this demanding an investigation into the leak.

Given the story is without foundation and knowing the threat the establishment sees in Corbyn, a leader whose policies include the creation of a National Bank (aaaarghh the fiend the fiend) and the renationalisation of public utilities (including transport) a leader whose knee-jerk reaction to Ashkenazi Jewish assaults against the Semitic population in Israel is to speak out loudly and boldly in defence of Palestinians' rights

given all this, we know that the idea of Jeremy Corbyn as Prime Minister of Great Britain is absolutely unacceptable to our ruling 'establishment'.

Let it be said then what Mr Corbyn and his inner circle must be thinking about the appearance of this non-story that the establishment is 'creating the option to eliminate' Mr. Corbyn (by heart attack dart?) in the event of his winning or threatening to win a UK general election.

Performing such a national service would be 'business as usual' for our "protectors" at MI5.

For example -Keith Mothersson: After he died in 2009, his obituary appeared in The Guardian.

The following facts are not included in the obituary of this heroic absolute gentleman:

"Keith created an organisation in 2008/9 called "ALL FAITHS FOR 9/11 TRUTH".
He, like most members of '9/11 Truth (UK & Ireland)', saw 9/11 truth as a spiritual (as much as a political) matter.
He went round the country meeting religious leaders and forming connections and bonds between the various groups he had organised. There were C of E, Catholic, Muslim (the largest group based in a couple of the biggest mosques in the country), Buddhist, and even a Jewish group.
I was involved with Keith, approaching 'Catholic' leaders (as an aside, the couple I tried to talk to [it was early days] were hostile to the idea even engaging with the issue maybe, for someone who has taken vows of obedience, this is an issue for the Pope alone)."

The thing is that Keith was the connection and bond between the groups he had started forming.

He lived in Perth, Scotland. On one evening during September 2009 Keith returned to his house in Perth. He arrived home in a dishevelled state, exhausted and confused. He told his partner that he been accosted by a group of men on the walk home and had "a terrible struggle in a van". He had been held down then released. He repeated "Why me?" to himself a few times before his partner helped him to bed.

She told friends that when Keith woke up he didn't know who he was. He did not recognise her either. He was taken to hospital where he lay silently in bed for two weeks before dying.

A multi-faith, well-organised, religious collective demanding answers re 9/11 represented a genuine threat to the "Deep State".
Keith had gone too far. He was "eliminated" and his nascent organisation along with him.
And there is no one to whom one can even report this terrible crime. Such is the nature of our society.
https://wwwkevboyle.blogspot.com/2019/06/corbyns-health-and-keith-mothersson.html

Jeremy Corbyn is not a fool. He understands very well the 'options' for the Deep State such a story creates and what this leak could possibly imply.. that is why I believe he may look as if he is indecisive?

Mucho
Very interesting Maggie, thanks
andyoldlabour
That is indeed correct. The various politicians who are involved in this disgraceful hounding of Corbyn and others, have pledged alliegence to Israel and the interference of Israel in the politics of the UK.
Martin Usher
The key to the anti-Semitism problem is the conflation of Judaism with Zionism. This didn't happen by accident, it is a deliberate and relatively modern policy. (An old (Jewish) friend described the indoctrination he got to me growing up. That was quite a long time ago, its probably so ingrained now that nobody notices this process any more.)

I may have a very simplistic view of things but to me Judaism is an Abrahamic religion with deep roots going back thousands of years. Zionism is a relatively modern European movement that dates from the latter half of the 19th century that has origins and aims that are not unlike many other 'volk' movements from the same period. Most of these were relatively harmless, 'back to the land' sorts of things but the racial undertones provided the underpinnings for, among others, the Nazis.

I know I'll probably get flamed for saying this but seriously there's a huge undercurrent of racism in some parts of Jewish society. I was first made aware of this many years ago when and old (goy) friend made the mistake of marrying an Orthodox girl. Up to that point I had only known secular/reform Jews so didn't think too much of it but the reaction from her family was quite extreme, protracted and not at all nice. The culture's there if you look for it -- its actually not unlike radical Islam in mindset so if it ever gets to a position of power (e.g. in modern Israel) then its going to be trouble for the untermensch!

Ramdan
"Israeli Zionism is the singular cancer that has been forcefully injected into the minds of world leaders across the globe; a cancer that these similarly affected leaders would wantonly force upon what little remains of the moral, civilized and correct conscience of man."

https://www.globalresearch.ca/rise-and-kill-first-the-secret-israeli-worldwide-assassination-program/5682052

vwbeetle
Zionism is a malevolent influence upon the body politic of the western world.
Francis Lee
The picture of Tom Watson and the other political 5th Columnists in the Labour party standing in front of a very large blue and white star of David flag tells us all we need to know. A bit like a political group in the UK sporting a Hammer and Sickle flag at Tory party conference. Labour Friends of Israel is of course a Zionist front in the LP. It's object is to further Israeli interests, and therefore it necessarily means against British interests. What else would they be doing? Promoting socialism perhaps? LFI has already been set in motion to get Corbyn and his co-thinkers to change their ways or else. In this sense also the British elite are working hand-in-glove with LFI and the Israelis, and it wouldn't at all surprise me if the CIA were not also involved at some level.

The trouble with Labour is that it doesn't want to be regarded as being 'extreme' or 'unrespectable'; oh dear no. We've even done away with Clause 4. Now how much higher do you want us to jump? We want to be Her Majesty's loyal opposition. 'Pale pink humbug' as Orwell called it. He called it right.

mathias alexand
Labour is hampered by a lack of internal democracy which goes back to its origins as an alliance of pre-existing groups like trade unions, etc.
DunGroanin
The Obsessive Groaniads daily pile of AS mud slinging, Barbara Ellen froths
"maddening, mendacious, slippery, gormless, prevaricating'
she snarls NOT writing about the tory clowns.
"I've long been anti-Corbyn for reasons beyond Brexit (antisemitism, anybody?)"
She raves and slobbers not realising that she is projecting.

Another article there by a 'famous' author – ive never heard of – has his unnamed publicist getting lots of free advertising for his 'great' writings for free because he thinks he has been subjected to AS!

Complete Utter Nonsensical Crappery by the shameless gormless Groaniad.

Ho hum – wait till the next government tasks the completion and implementation of Leveson 2.

Gezzah Potts
DG . What do you expect from these presstitute stenographers. Full boycott of all mainstream media, including alleged 'progressive' media. On a tangent, used to read Barbara Ellen many years ago (30?) when she wrote for the NME which was basically my 'bible' back then. How sad the once great Babs Ellen has become a . Slug.
DunGroanin
Ah the NME – a bible for us back in the day – see how it was taken out and shot after it supported Corbyn in 2017.

A very accidental death it suffered.

Imagine what they would bave done to Russell Brand if he had had the same influence.

Yes i'm afraid most of the neolib con artiste creatures of the Obssezsive Groan are beyond saving. They will sizzle in the light.

Gezzah Potts
Thanks DG. I only know the NME is now online only, didn't know the reasons for its print demise. I wonder what the late Steven Wells would have made of all this ludicrous crap? I just can't tolerate the cretinous craven presstitutes in the MSM anymore. Gets me too fecked off knowing what they're loudly spouting is pro empire, pro imperialist bullshit in the service of the 0.01℅. Good site for you to check is Neoliberalism Softpanorama. A vast treasure trove of info.
Francis Lee
What is difficult to forgive is the fact in times gone by, and occasionally today, the Jewish intelligentsia have made a huge input into the development of western civilization. In terms of politics, Marx, Rosa Luxembourg, Greogy Lukacs, Eduard Bernstein, Leon Trotsky, Leonard Woolf; in terms of social theory, Emile Durkheim, Sigmund Freud, Erich Fromm, Hannah Arendt; in terms of literaure Franz Kafka, Saul Bellow. Contemporary intellectuals being Noam Chomsky, Norman Finkelstein and possibly a less well-known and very courageous Jewish oppositionist, Gideon Levy, who writes for Haaretz. These were the guys I cut my teeth on as a student and whom I still revere to a great extent. It was the Jewish intelligentsia who led the opposition against the forces of reaction, particularly in Europe.

Times have changed it seems, Israel and Zionism are now the forces of reaction.

John Calvert
Yes. But how many of those great names would have willingly and proudly posed in front of the national flag of the state of Israel?
Philip Toal
Facts would be appreciated in light of the truth that G. levy, Finkelstein, Pappe etc. are indeed alive and well. It's apparently a case of informed opinions based on pure facts as opposed to ignorance as to who is alive or dead that is issue important.
Chris W
Antinationalism for goyim and nationalism for jews – because goyim have these genocidal tendencies Many, many Jews deep down believe that Non-Jews want to kill them, so pre-emptive strikes is the way to go. Most of all strikes against the ethnic and religious identity of non-Jewish people, because those identities make a people strong. So socialist Jews in Europe and zionist ones everywhere fight the same pro-Jewish/anti-goyim fight
harry law
John McDonnell encapsulates for me the pathetic spinelessness of the Labour Party, in a long interview with the Jewish news the interviewer asked him why Corbyn shared platforms with Anti-semites "So when we're talking about sharing a platform with anti-Semites, we're not talking about people who are just supportive of the Palestinian cause, do you think it might be time for an apology"?

JmD: "You have to look at why he was sharing platforms, it was not to endorse them, it was to try and engage with them".
There you have it, his friend Corbyn spent the past 30 years of his life traversing the country addressing Palestinian and antiwar groups and offering them his support, then in one sentence McDonnell throws his friend under the bus "it was not to endorse them". With a friend like McDonnell who needs enemies.
My advice to McDonnell is get on your belly and crawl and then ask for forgiveness from the Board of Deputies, it still will not be enough. They will only be happy when Corbyn is destroyed.

mark
However much you grovel and appease these people, it is never enough. Give $10 billion to Israel and you're anti semitic because you haven't given it $50 billion. Fight 5 wars for Israel, and you're anti semitic because you haven't fought 10 wars for Israel.

Netanyahu explained it all quite well.

"If we get caught, they will just replace us with persons of the same cloth. So it does not matter what you do. America is a golden calf, and we will suck it dry, chop it up and sell it off piece by piece till there is nothing left but the world's biggest welfare state that we will create and control. Why? Because it is the Will of God and America is big enough to take the hit. So we can do it again and again and again. This is what we do to countries that we hate. We destroy them very slowly and make them suffer for refusing to be our slaves."

To America, add Britain.

Steve Hayes
The comparison to a witch hunt is perfectly accurate. The attack works by mere accusation. The facts, evidence, criteria of evaluation are all irrelevant. Accuse emotively, and construe any dissent or even scepticism as proof of guilt. This is the modus operandi of the witch hunters, the arbiters of truth and the only acceptable version of reality. This becomes a loyalty test. Anyone who refuses to support the witch hunters is either already a witch or in imminent danger of becoming one. https://viewsandstories.blogspot.com/2018/09/on-dog-whistles-and-witch-finders.html
Harry Stotle
'The attack works by mere accusation. The facts, evidence, criteria of evaluation are all irrelevant. Accuse emotively, and construe any dissent or even scepticism as proof of guilt. This is the modus operandi of the witch hunters' – hammer, welcome to head of nail.
Maggie
Right out of Goebel's hand book
Steve Hayes
Maggie I am pretty sure that none of the quotes you attribute to Goebbels were said/written by him. Perhaps you could cite your source(s)?
Mucho
Hurricane survivors forced to pledge allegiance to Israel to receive Support (In Texas Town) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PqOIeUTx8VQ&t=11s

Former Congresswoman Cynthia McKinney talks with PressTV about how the Israeli Lobby owns both the Congress and the Senate and how AIPAC and the ADL took her out. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w_VNOk7Wv5A

More than 200 British MPs sign a pledge to Israel https://unitedwithisrael.org/over-200-uk-candidates-sign-pro-israel-pledge/

Montel Jordan – This Is How We Do It https://www.youtube.com/embed/0hiUuL5uTKc

Mucho
More than 200 British MPs sign a pledge to Israel ..should say Candidates for election, not MPs

[Jul 29, 2019] CrowdStrikeOut Mueller's Own Report Undercuts Its Core Russia-Meddling Claims by Aaron Matι

Notable quotes:
"... The US elite jump up and down with moral indignation about an evidence-free allegation of foreign interference in its domestic politics, whilst ignoring actual evidenced foreign interference in its domestic affairs, and all the while constantly interfering in the domestic affairs of foreign countries and boasting about it. ..."
"... The Mueller Report is proof positive that the US is equally adept as Blair and Campbell in producing Dodgy Dossiers. ..."
"... It was a novel idea to outsource the investigation to Crowdstrike. There's a lot to be said for privatisation. Most commendable. Maybe the next time there's a high profile criminal investigation the FBI will outsource the murder investigation to Sam Spade, Ace Gumshoe. ..."
"... The fundamental flaw in the whole "Russiagate" thing is the failure to differentiate between Russia, the state and its government, and Russians, individuals who are Russian nationals. This failure is a direct result of an inability to recognize that the Cold War finished 30 years ago, a failure highlighted by the breathless Tom Clancy style of reporting and reinforced by a huge military/industrial complex that recognizes that in the absence of war or threats or war their business is a bust. ..."
Jul 25, 2019 | off-guardian.org
Vaska
Originally by Aaron Matι, July 5, 2019 First published by RealClearInvestigations .

At a May press conference capping his tenure as special counsel, Robert Mueller emphasized what he called "the central allegation" of the two-year Russia probe. The Russian government, Mueller sternly declared, engaged in "multiple, systematic efforts to interfere in our election, and that allegation deserves the attention of every American." Mueller's comments echoed a January 2017 Intelligence Community Assessment (ICA) asserting with "high confidence" that Russia conducted a sweeping 2016 election influence campaign. "I don't think we've ever encountered a more aggressive or direct campaign to interfere in our election process," then-Director of National Intelligence James Clapper told a Senate hearing.

While the 448-page Mueller report found no conspiracy between Donald Trump's campaign and Russia, it offered voluminous details to support the sweeping conclusion that the Kremlin worked to secure Trump's victory. The report claims that the interference operation occurred "principally" on two fronts: Russian military intelligence officers hacked and leaked embarrassing Democratic Party documents, and a government-linked troll farm orchestrated a sophisticated and far-reaching social media campaign that denigrated Hillary Clinton and promoted Trump.

But a close examination of the report shows that none of those headline assertions are supported by the report's evidence or other publicly available sources. They are further undercut by investigative shortcomings and the conflicts of interest of key players involved:

The report uses qualified and vague language to describe key events, indicating that Mueller and his investigators do not actually know for certain whether Russian intelligence officers stole Democratic Party emails, or how those emails were transferred to WikiLeaks. The report's timeline of events appears to defy logic. According to its narrative, WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange announced the publication of Democratic Party emails not only before he received the documents but before he even communicated with the source that provided them. There is strong reason to doubt Mueller's suggestion that an alleged Russian cutout called Guccifer 2.0 supplied the stolen emails to Assange. Mueller's decision not to interview Assange – a central figure who claims Russia was not behind the hack – suggests an unwillingness to explore avenues of evidence on fundamental questions. U.S. intelligence officials cannot make definitive conclusions about the hacking of the Democratic National Committee computer servers because they did not analyze those servers themselves. Instead, they relied on the forensics of CrowdStrike, a private contractor for the DNC that was not a neutral party, much as "Russian dossier" compiler Christopher Steele, also a DNC contractor, was not a neutral party. This puts two Democrat-hired contractors squarely behind underlying allegations in the affair – a key circumstance that Mueller ignores. Further, the government allowed CrowdStrike and the Democratic Party's legal counsel to submit redacted records, meaning CrowdStrike and not the government decided what could be revealed or not regarding evidence of hacking. Mueller's report conspicuously does not allege that the Russian government carried out the social media campaign. Instead it blames, as Mueller said in his closing remarks, "a private Russian entity" known as the Internet Research Agency (IRA). Mueller also falls far short of proving that the Russian social campaign was sophisticated, or even more than minimally related to the 2016 election. As with the collusion and Russian hacking allegations, Democratic officials had a central and overlooked hand in generating the alarm about Russian social media activity. John Brennan, then director of the CIA, played a seminal and overlooked role in all facets of what became Mueller's investigation: the suspicions that triggered the initial collusion probe; the allegations of Russian interference; and the intelligence assessment that purported to validate the interference allegations that Brennan himself helped generate. Yet Brennan has since revealed himself to be, like CrowdStrike and Steele, hardly a neutral party -- in fact a partisan with a deep animus toward Trump.

None of this means that the Mueller report's core finding of "sweeping and systematic" Russian government election interference is necessarily false. But his report does not present sufficient evidence to substantiate it. This shortcoming has gone overlooked in the partisan battle over two more highly charged aspects of Mueller's report: potential Trump-Russia collusion and Trump's potential obstruction of the resulting investigation. As Mueller prepares to testify before House committees later this month, the questions surrounding his claims of a far-reaching Russian influence campaign are no less important. They raise doubts about the genesis and perpetuation of Russiagate and the performance of those tasked with investigating it.

Uncertainty Over Who Stole the Emails

The Mueller report's narrative of Russian hacking and leaking was initially laid out in a July 2018 indictment of 12 Russian intelligence officers and is detailed further in the report. According to Mueller, operatives at Russia's main intelligence agency, the GRU, broke into Clinton campaign Chairman John Podesta's emails in March 2016. The hackers infiltrated Podesta's account with a common tactic called spear-phishing, duping him with a phony security alert that led him to enter his password. The GRU then used stolen Democratic Party credentials to hack into the DNC and Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) servers beginning in April 2016. Beginning in June 2016, the report claims, the GRU created two online personas, "DCLeaks" and "Guccifer 2.0," to begin releasing the stolen material. After making contact later that month, Guccifer 2.0 apparently transferred the DNC emails to the whistleblowing, anti-secrecy publisher WikiLeaks, which released the first batch on July 22 ahead of the Democratic National Convention.

The report presents this narrative with remarkable specificity: It describes in detail how GRU officers installed malware, leased U.S.-based computers, and used cryptocurrencies to carry out their hacking operation. The intelligence that caught the GRU hackers is portrayed as so invasive and precise that it even captured the keystrokes of individual Russian officers, including their use of search engines.

In fact, the report contains crucial gaps in the evidence that might support that authoritative account. Here is how it describes the core crime under investigation, the alleged GRU theft of DNC emails:

Between approximately May 25, 2016 and June 1, 2016, GRU officers accessed the DNC's mail server from a GRU-controlled computer leased inside the United States. During these connections, Unit 26165 officers appear to have stolen thousands of emails and attachments, which were later released by WikiLeaks in July 2016. [ Italics added for emphasis.]

The report's use of that one word, "appear," undercuts its suggestions that Mueller possesses convincing evidence that GRU officers stole "thousands of emails and attachments" from DNC servers. It is a departure from the language used in his July 2018 indictment , which contained no such qualifier:

"It's certainly curious as to why this discrepancy exists between the language of Mueller's indictment and the extra wiggle room inserted into his report a year later," says former FBI Special Agent Coleen Rowley. "It may be an example of this and other existing gaps that are inherent with the use of circumstantial information. With Mueller's exercise of quite unprecedented (but politically expedient) extraterritorial jurisdiction to indict foreign intelligence operatives who were never expected to contest his conclusing assertions in court, he didn't have to worry about precision. I would guess, however, that even though NSA may be able to track some hacking operations, it would be inherently difficult, if not impossible, to connect specific individuals to the computer transfer operations in question."

The report also concedes that Mueller's team did not determine another critical component of the crime it alleges: how the stolen Democratic material was transferred to WikiLeaks. The July 2018 indictment of GRU officers suggested – without stating outright – that WikiLeaks published the Democratic Party emails after receiving them from Guccifer 2.0 in a file named "wk dnc linkI .txt.gpg" on or around July 14, 2016. But now the report acknowledges that Mueller has not actually established how WikiLeaks acquired the stolen information: "The Office cannot rule out that stolen documents were transferred to WikiLeaks through intermediaries who visited during the summer of 2016."

Another partially redacted passage also suggests that Mueller cannot trace exactly how WikiLeaks received the stolen emails. Given how the sentence is formulated, the redacted portion could reflect Mueller's uncertainty:

Contrary to Mueller's sweeping conclusions, the report itself is, at best, suggesting that the GRU, via its purported cutout Guccifer 2.0, may have transferred the stolen emails to WikiLeaks.

A Questionable Timeline

Mueller's uncertainty over the theft and transfer of Democratic Party emails isn't the only gap in his case. Another is his timeline of events – a critical component of any criminal investigation. The report's timeline defies logic: According to its account, WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange announced the publication of the emails not only before he received the documents, but before he even communicated with the source that provided them.

As the Mueller report confirms, on June 12, 2016, Assange told an interviewer, "We have upcoming leaks in relation to Hillary Clinton, which is great." But Mueller reports that "WikiLeaks's First Contact With Guccifer 2.0 and DC Leaks" comes two days after that announcement:

If Assange's "First Contact" with DC Leaks came on June 14, and with Guccifer 2.0 on June 22, then what was Assange talking about on June 12? It is possible that Assange heard from another supposed Russian source before then; but if so, Mueller doesn't know it. Instead the report offers the implausible scenario that their first contact came after Assange's announcement.

There is another issue with the report's Guccifer 2.0-WikiLeaks timeline. Assange would have been announcing the pending release of stolen emails not just before he heard from the source , but also before he received the stolen emails . As noted earlier, Mueller suggested that WikiLeaks received the stolen material from Guccifer 2.0 "on or around" July 14 – a full month after Assange publicly announced that he had them.

In yet one more significant inconsistency, Mueller asserts that the two Russian outfits running the Kremlin-backed operation -- Guccifer 2.0 and DC Leaks – communicated about their covert activities over Twitter. Mueller reports that on Sept. 15, 2016:

The Twitter account@guccifer_2 sent @dcleaks_ a direct message, which is the first known contact between the personas. During subsequent communications, the Guccifer 2.0 persona informed DCLeaks that WikiLeaks was trying to contact DCLeaks and arrange for a way to speak through encrypted emails.

Why would Russian intelligence cutouts running a sophisticated interference campaign communicate over an easily monitored social media platform? In one of many such instances throughout the report, Mueller shows no curiosity in pursuing this obvious question.

For his part, Assange has repeatedly claimed that Russia was not his source and that the U.S. government does not know who was. "The U.S. intelligence community is not aware of when WikiLeaks obtained its material or when the sequencing of our material was done or how we obtained our material directly," Assange said in January 2017. "WikiLeaks sources in relation to the Podesta emails and the DNC leak are not members of any government. They are not state parties. They do not come from the Russian government."

Guccifer 2.0: A Sketchy Source

While Mueller admits he does not know for certain how the DNC emails were stolen or how they were transmitted to WikiLeaks, the report creates the impression that Russian intelligence cutout Guccifer 2.0 supplied the stolen material to Assange.

In fact, there are strong grounds for doubt. To begin with, Guccifer 2.0 – who was unknown until June 2016 – burst onto the scene to demand credit as WikiLeaks' source. This publicity-seeking is not standard spycraft.

More important, as Raffi Khatchadourian has reported for The New Yorker, the documents Guccifer 2.0 released directly were nowhere near the quality of the material published by WikiLeaks. For example, on June 18, Guccifer 2.0 released documents that it claimed were from the DNC, "but which were almost surely not," Khatchadourian notes. Neither was the material Guccifer 2.0 teased as a "dossier on Hillary Clinton from DNC." The material Guccifer 2.0 initially promoted in June also contained easily discoverable Russian metadata. The computer that created it was configured for the Russian language, and the username was "Felix Dzerzhinsky," the Bolshevik-era founder of the first Soviet secret police.

WikiLeaks only made contact with Guccifer 2.0 after the latter publicly invited journalists "to send me their questions via Twitter Direct Messages." And, more problematic given the central role the report assigned to Guccifer 2.0, there is no direct evidence that WikiLeaks actually released anything that Guccifer 2.0 provided. In a 2017 interview, Assange said he "didn't publish" any material from that source because much of it had been published elsewhere and because "we didn't have the resources to independently verify."

Mueller Didn't Speak With Assange

Some of these issues might have been resolved had Mueller not declined to interview Assange, despite Assange's multiple efforts.

According to a 2018 report by John Solomon in The Hill, Assange told the Justice Department the previous year that he "was willing to discuss technical evidence ruling out certain parties" in the leaking of Democratic Party emails to WikiLeaks. Given Assange's previous denials of Russia's involvement, that seems to indicate he was willing to provide evidence that Moscow was not his source. But he never got the chance. According to Solomon, FBI Director James Comey personally intervened with an order that U.S. officials "stand down," setting off a chain of events that scuttled the talks.

Assange also made public offers to testify before Congress. The Mueller report makes no mention of these overtures, though it does cite and dismiss "media reports" that "Assange told a U.S. congressman that the DNC hack was an 'inside job,' and purported to have 'physical proof' that Russians did not give materials to Assange."

Mueller does not explain why he included Assange's comments as reported by media outlets in his report but decided not to speak with Assange directly, or ask to see his "physical proof," during a two-year investigation.

No Server Inspection, Reliance on CrowdStrike

Before he nixed U.S. government contacts with Assange, Comey was implicated in another key investigative lapse – the FBI's failure to conduct its own investigation of the DNC's servers, which housed the record of alleged intrusions and malware used to steal information. As Comey told Congress in March 2017, the FBI "never got direct access to the machines themselves." Instead, he explained, the bureau relied on CrowdStrike, a cybersecurity firm hired by the DNC, which "shared with us their forensics from their review of the system."

While acknowledging that the FBI would "always prefer to have access hands-on ourselves, if that's possible," Comey emphasized his confidence in the information provided by CrowdStrike, which he called "a highly respected private company" and "a high-class entity."

CrowdStrike's accuracy is far from a given. Days after Comey's testimony, CrowdStrike was forced to retract its claim that Russian software was used to hack Ukrainian military hardware. CrowdStrike's error is especially relevant because it had accused the GRU of using that same software in hacking the DNC.

There is also reason to question CrowdStrike's impartiality. Its co-founder, Dmitri Alperovitch, is a nonresident senior fellow at the Atlantic Council, the preeminent Washington think tank that aggressively promotes a hawkish posture towards Russia. CrowdStrike executive Shawn Henry, who led the forensics team that ultimately blamed Russia for the DNC breach, previously served as assistant director at the FBI under Mueller.

And CrowdStrike was hired to perform the analysis of the DNC servers by Perkins Coie – the law firm that also was responsible for contracting Fusion GPS, the Washington, D.C.-based opposition research firm that produced the now discredited Steele dossier alleging salacious misconduct by Trump in Russia and his susceptibility to blackmail.

A CrowdStrike spokesperson declined a request for comment on its role in the Russia investigation.

The picture is further clouded by the conflicting accounts regarding the servers. A DNC spokesperson told BuzzFeed in early January 2017 that "the FBI never requested access to the DNC's computer servers." But Comey told the Senate Select Intelligence Committee days later that the FBI made "multiple requests at different levels," but for unknown reasons, he explained, those requests were denied.

While failing to identify the "different levels" he consulted, Comey never explained why the FBI took no for an answer. As part of a criminal investigation, the FBI could have seized the servers to ensure a proper chain of evidentiary custody. In investigating a crime, alleged victims do not get to dictate to law enforcement how they can inspect the crime scene.

The report fails to address any of this, suggesting a lack of interest in even fundamental questions if they might reflect poorly on the FBI.

The Mueller report states that "as part of its investigation, the FBI later received images of DNC servers and copies of relevant traffic logs." But it does not specify how much "later" it received those server images or who provided them. Based on the statements of Comey and other U.S. officials, it is quite likely that they came from CrowdStrike, though the company gets only passing mention in the redacted report.

Asked for comment, Special Counsel spokesman Peter Carr declined to answer whether the Mueller team relied on CrowdStrike for its allegations against the GRU. Carr referred queries to the Justice Department's National Security Division, which declined to comment, and to the U.S. Western District of Pennsylvania, which did not respond.

If CrowdStrike's role in the investigation raises a red flag, the potential exclusion of another entity raises an equally glaring one. According to former NSA Technical Director Bill Binney, the NSA is the only U.S. agency that could conclusively determine the source of the alleged DNC email hacks. "If this was really an internet hack, the NSA could easily tell us when the information was taken and the route it took after being removed from the [DNC] server," Binney says. But given Mueller's qualified language and his repeated use of "in or around" rather than outlining specific, down-to-the-second timestamps – which the NSA could provide -- Binney is skeptical that NSA intelligence was included in the GRU indictment and the report.

There has been no public confirmation that intelligence acquired by the NSA was used in the Mueller probe. Asked whether any of its information had been used in the allegations against the GRU, or had been declassified for public release in Mueller's investigation, a spokesperson for the National Security Agency declined to comment.

Redacted CrowdStrike Reports

While the extent of the FBI's reliance on CrowdStrike remains unclear, critical details are beginning to emerge via an unlikely source: the legal case of Roger Stone – the Trump adviser Mueller indicted for, among other things, allegedly lying to Congress about his failed efforts to learn about WikiLeaks' plans regarding Clinton's emails.

Lawyers for Stone discovered that CrowdStrike submitted three forensic reports to the FBI that were redacted and in draft form. When Stone asked to see CrowdStrike's un-redacted versions, prosecutors made the explosive admission that the U.S. government does not have them. "The government does not possess the information the defendant seeks," prosecutor Jessie Liu wrote. This is because, Liu explained , CrowdStrike itself redacted the reports that it provided to the government:

At the direction of the DNC and DCCC's legal counsel, CrowdStrike prepared three draft reports. Copies of these reports were subsequently produced voluntarily to the government by counsel for the DNC and DCCC. At the time of the voluntary production, counsel for the DNC told the government that the redacted material concerned steps taken to remediate the attack and to harden the DNC and DCCC systems against future attack. According to counsel, no redacted information concerned the attribution of the attack to Russian actors.

In other words, the government allowed CrowdStrike and the Democratic Party's legal counsel to decide what it could and could not see in reports on Russian hacking, thereby surrendering the ability to independently vet their claims. The government also took CrowdStrike's word that "no redacted information concerned the attribution of the attack to Russian actors."

According to an affidavit filed for Stone's defense by Binney, the speed transfer rate and the file formatting of the DNC data indicate that they were moved on to a storage device, not hacked over the Internet. In a rebuttal, Stone's prosecutors said that the file information flagged by Binney "would be equally consistent with Russia intelligence officers using a thumb drive to transfer hacked materials among themselves after the hack took place." In an interview with RealClearInvestigations, Binney could not rule out that possibility. But conversely, the evidence laid out by Mueller is so incomplete and uncertain that Binney's theory cannot be ruled out either. The very fact that DoJ prosecutors, in their response to Binney, do not rule out his theory that a thumb drive was used to transfer the material is an acknowledgment in that direction.

The lack of clarity around Mueller's intelligence community sourcing might appear inconsequential given the level of detail in his account of alleged Russian hacking. But in light of the presence of potentially biased and politically conflicted sources like CrowdStrike, and the absence of certainty revealed in Mueller's lengthy account, the fact that his sourcing remains an open question makes it difficult to accept that he has delivered definitive answers. If Mueller had the invasive window into Russian intelligence that he claims to, it seems incongruous that he would temper his purported descriptions of their actions with tentative, qualified language. Mueller's hedging suggests a broader conclusion at odds with the report's own findings: that the U.S. government does not have ironclad proof about who hacked the DNC.

Social Media Campaign

Mueller's other "central allegation" regards a "Russian 'Active Measures' Social Media Campaign" with the aim of "sowing discord" and helping to elect Trump.

In fact, Mueller does not directly attribute that campaign to the Russian government, and makes only the barest attempt to imply a Kremlin connection. According to Mueller, the social media "form of Russian election influence came principally from the Internet Research Agency, LLC (IRA), a Russian organization funded by Yevgeniy Viktorovich Prigozhin and companies he controlled."

After two years and $35 million, Mueller apparently failed to uncover any direct evidence linking the Prigozhin-controlled IRA's activities to the Kremlin. His best evidence is that "[n]umerous media sources have reported on Prigozhin's ties to Putin, and the two have appeared together in public photographs." The footnote for this references a lone article in the New York Times. (Both the Times and the Washington Post are cited frequently throughout the report. The two outlets received and published intelligence community leaks throughout the Russia probe.)

Further, in a newly unsealed July 1 ruling , a federal judge rebuked Mueller and the Justice Department for having "improperly suggested a link" between the IRA and the Russian government. U.S. District Judge Dabney Friedrich said Mueller's February 2018 indictment "does not link the [IRA] to the Russian government" and alleges "only private conduct by private actors." The judge added the government's statements violate a prohibiting lawyers from making claims that would prejudice a case.

Even putting aside the complete absence of a Kremlin role, the case that the Russian government sought to influence the U.S. election via a social media campaign is hard to grasp given how minuscule it was. Mueller says the IRA spent $100,000 between 2015 and 2017. Of that, just $46,000 was spent on Russian-linked Facebook ads before the 2016 election. That amounts to about 0.05% of the $81 million spent on Facebook ads by the Clinton and Trump campaigns combined -- which is itself a tiny fraction of the estimated $2 billion spent by the candidates and their supporting PACS.

Then there is the fact that so little of this supposed election interference campaign content actually concerned the election. Mueller himself cites a review by Twitter of tweets from "accounts associated with the IRA" in the 10 weeks before the 2016 election, which found that "approximately 8.4% were election-related." This tracks with a report commissioned by the U.S. Senate that found that "explicitly political content was a small percentage" of the content attributed to the IRA. The IRA's posts "were minimally about the candidates," with "roughly 6% of tweets, 18% of Instagram posts, and 7% of Facebook posts" having "mentioned Trump or Clinton by name."

Yet Mueller circumvents this with what sound like impressive figures:

IRA-controlled Twitter accounts separately had tens of thousands of followers, including multiple U.S. political figures who retweeted IRA-created content. In November 2017, a Facebook representative testified that Facebook had identified 470 IRA-controlled Facebook accounts that collectively made 80,000 posts between January 2015 and August 2017. Facebook estimated the IRA reached as many as 126 million persons through its Facebook accounts. In January 2018, Twitter announced that it had identified 3,814 IRA-controlled Twitter accounts and notified approximately 1.4 million people Twitter believed may have been in contact with an IRA-controlled account.

Upon scrutiny, Mueller's figures are exaggerated, to say the least. Take Mueller's claim that Russian posts reached "as many as 126 million" Facebook users. That figure is in fact a spin on Facebook's own guess, as articulated by Facebook general counsel Colin Stretch's congressional testimony in October 2017. "Our best estimate ," Stretch told lawmakers, "is that approximately 126 million people may have been served content from a page associated with the IRA at some point during the two-year period ." And the "two-year period" extends far beyond the 2016 election, to August 2017. Overall, Stretch added, posts from suspected Russian accounts showing up in Facebook's News Feed comprised "approximately 1 out of [every] 23,000 pieces of content."

Yet another reason to question the Russian operation's sophistication is the quality of its content. The IRA's most shared pre-election Facebook post was a cartoon of a gun-wielding Yosemite Sam . On Instagram, the best-received image urged users to give it a "Like" if they believe in Jesus. The top IRA post on Facebook before the election that mentioned Hillary Clinton was a conspiratorial screed about voter fraud . Another ad featured Jesus consoling a dejected young man by telling him: "Struggling with the addiction to masturbation? Reach out to me and we will beat it together."

Mueller also reports that the IRA successfully organized "dozens" of rallies "while posing as U.S. grassroots activists." Sounds impressive, but the most successful effort appears to have been in Houston, where Russian trolls allegedly organized dueling rallies pitting a dozen white supremacists against several dozen counter-protesters outside an Islamic center. Elsewhere, the IRA had underwhelming results, according to media reports: At several rallies in Florida " it's unclear if anyone attended ," the Daily Beast later noted; "no people showed up to at least one," and "ragtag groups" showed up at others , the Washington Post reported, including one where video footage captured a crowd of eight people .

Far from exposing a sophisticated propaganda campaign, the reports suggest that Russian troll farm workers engaged in futile efforts to spark contentious rallies in a handful of states. When it comes to the ads, they may have been engaging in clickbait capitalism: targeting unique demographics like African Americans or evangelicals in a bid to attract large audiences for commercial purposes. Reporters who have profiled the IRA have commonly described it as " a social media marketing campaign ." Mueller's February 2018 indictment of the IRA disclosed that it sold "promotions and advertisements" on its pages that generally sold in the $25-$50 range. "This strategy," a Senate report from Oxford University's Computational Propaganda Project observes, "is not an invention for politics and foreign intrigue, it is consistent with techniques used in digital marketing."

That, in fact, was Facebook's initial conclusion. As the Washington Post first reported , Facebook's initial review of Russian social media activity in late 2016 and early 2017 found that the troll farm's pages "had clear financial motives, which suggested that they weren't working for a foreign government." That view only changed, the Post added, after "aides to Hillary Clinton and Obama" developed "theories" to help them "explain what they saw as an unnatural turn of events" in their loss of the 2016 election. Among these theories: "Russian operatives who were directed by the Kremlin to support Trump may have taken advantage of Facebook and other social media platforms to direct their messages to American voters in key demographic areas." Despite the fact that "these former advisers didn't have hard evidence," the Democratic aides found a receptive audience in both congressional intelligence committees. Democrat Mark Warner, the Senate intel vice chairman, personally flew out to Facebook headquarters in California to press the case. Not long after, in the summer of 2017, Facebook went public with its new "findings" about Russian trolls. Mueller has followed their lead – just as the FBI followed the leads of other Democratic sources in pursuing both the collusion (Fusion GPS) and Russian hacking (CrowdStrike) allegations.

John Brennan and the ICA

As it falls short of proving its case for a "sweeping and systematic" Russian interference campaign, the Mueller report also fails to support its claim regarding the motive behind such efforts. In the introduction to Volume I, Mueller states that "the investigation established that the Russian government perceived it would benefit from a Trump presidency and worked to secure that outcome." But nowhere in the ensuing 440 pages does Mueller produce any evidence to substantiate that central claim.

Instead Mueller appears to be relying on the intelligence community assessment (ICA) released in January 2017 – four months before his appointment – that accused the Russian government of running an "influence campaign" that aimed "to undermine public faith in the U.S. democratic process," and hurt Hillary Clinton's "electability and potential presidency" as part of what it called Russia's "clear preference for President-elect Trump."

But the ICA itself produced no evidence for any of these assertions. Its equivocation is even more blunt than Mueller's: The ICA report's conclusions, it states, are "not intended to imply that we have proof that shows something to be a fact."

On the core conclusion that Russia aimed to help Trump, there is not even uniformity: While the FBI and CIA claim to have "high confidence" in that judgment, the NSA makes a conspicuous deviation in expressing that it has only "moderate confidence."

As it casts doubt on a core allegation of Russia's alleged motives, the NSA's dissent debunks the oft-repeated claim that the ICA represented the consensus view of all 17 U.S. intelligence agencies.

Moreover, it would even be misleading to portray the ICA as the product of the three agencies that produced it – the CIA, FBI, and NSA. Instead, there are multiple indications that the ICA is primarily the work of one person, who would spend the next two years accusing Trump of treason: then-CIA Director John Brennan.

A March 2018 report from Republicans on the House Intelligence Committee says that Brennan personally oversaw the entire ICA process from start to finish. In December 2016, the GOP report recounts, President Obama "directed Brennan to conduct a review of all intelligence relating to Russian involvement in the 2016 elections." The resulting ICA "was drafted by CIA analysts" and merely " coordinated with the NSA and the FBI." The GOP report observes that Brennan's CIA analysts were "subjected to an unusually constrained review and coordination process, which deviated from established CIA practice ."[ Italics added for emphasis.] A lengthy Democratic rebuttal to the GOP members' report does not refute any of these findings.

Echoing the NSA's dissent, the House GOP questions the ICA's conclusion that Putin interfered to secure Trump's victory. The committee, they write, "identified significant intelligence tradecraft failings that undermine confidence in the ICA judgments regarding Russian President Vladimir Putin's strategic objectives for disrupting the U.S. election." [ Italics added for emphasis.]

The Brennan-run process may have also excluded dissenting views from other agencies. Jack Matlock, the former U.S. Ambassador to Russia, has claimed that a "senior official" from the State Department's intelligence wing, the Bureau of Intelligence and Research (INR), informed him that it had reached a different conclusion about alleged Russian meddling, "but was not allowed to express it." An INR spokesperson declined a request for comment.

The ICA's production schedule also raises a red flag: The outgoing Obama administration tasked Brennan with churning it out in seemingly unprecedented time. "Ordinarily, the kind of assessment that you're talking about, there would be something that would take well over a year to do, certainly many months to do," former federal prosecutor Andrew McCarthy told the House Intelligence Committee in June. " [S]eems to me, in this instance, there was a rush to get that out within a matter of days."

But even if Brennan had been given all the time in the world, the very fact that he was placed in charge of the intelligence assessment was a massive conflict of interest. Brennan was handed the opportunity to validate, without independent scrutiny or oversight from unbiased sources, serious allegations that he himself helped generate.

Efforts to reach Brennan through MSNBC, where he is a commentator, were unsuccessful.

Months before he oversaw the intelligence assessment, Brennan played a critical role in the FBI's decision to open the probe of Trump-Russia collusion. "I was aware of intelligence and information about contacts between Russian officials and U.S. persons that raised concerns in my mind about whether or not those individuals were cooperating with the Russians, either in a witting or unwitting fashion," Brennan told Congress in March 2017, "and it served as the basis for the FBI investigation to determine whether such collusion-cooperation occurred."

On top of his self-described role in generating the investigation of possible Trump-Russia collusion, Brennan also played a critical role in generating the claim that the Russian government was waging an influence campaign. According to the book "The Apprentice" by the Washington Post's Greg Miller, the CIA unit known as "Russia House" was "the point of origin" for the U.S. intelligence community's conclusion during the presidential campaign that "the Kremlin was actively seeking to elect Trump." Brennan sequestered himself in his office to pore over the CIA's material , "staying so late that the glow through his office windows remained visible deep into the night." Brennan "ordered up," not just vetted, "'finished' assessments – analytic reports that had gone through layers of review and revision," Miller adds, but also "what agency veterans call the 'raw stuff' – the unprocessed underlying material."

Anyone familiar with how cherry-picked, false intelligence made the case for the Iraq War will recognize "raw material" as a red flag. Here's another: According to Miller, one piece of intelligence that was "a particular source of alarm to Brennan," was the "bombshell" from "sourcing deep inside the Kremlin" that Putin himself had "authorized a covert operation" in order to, "in his own words damage Clinton and help elect Trump" via "a cyber campaign to disrupt and discredit the U.S. presidential race." A former CIA operative described that sourcing as "the espionage equivalent of 'the Holy Grail.'"

Undoubtedly, a mole within Putin's inner circle – able to capture his exact orders – would indeed fit that description. But that raises the obvious question: If such a crown jewel of espionage exists, why would anyone in U.S. intelligence allow it to be revealed? And why hadn't that "Holy Grail" source been able to forewarn its American intelligence handlers of any number of Putin's actions that have caught the U.S. off-guard, from the annexation of Crimea to the Russian intervention in Syria?

Brennan was the first to alert President Obama of a Russian interference campaign, and subsequently oversaw the U.S. intelligence response.

Since leaving office, Brennan has laid bare his personal animus towards Trump, going so far as to call him "treasonous" – an unprecedented charge for a former top intelligence official to make about a sitting president. In the weeks before Mueller issued his final report, Brennan was still predicting that members of Trump's inner circle, including family members, would be indicted. Given Brennan's bias and consistent patterns of errors, Mueller's unquestioning, apparent reliance on a Brennan-run process is suspect.

Although Mueller seemed to accept the ICA's explosive claims at face value, Brennan's work product is now facing Justice Department scrutiny. The New York Times reported on June 12 that Attorney General William Barr is "interested in how the C.I.A. drew its conclusions about Russia's election sabotage, particularly the judgment that Mr. Putin ordered that operatives help Mr. Trump." In what is most likely a direct reference to Brennan, the Times adds that Barr "wants to know more about the C.I.A. sources who helped inform its understanding of the details of the Russian interference campaign," as well as about "the intelligence that flowed from the C.I.A. to the F.B.I. in the summer of 2016."

Until Barr completes his review of the Russia probe, the April 2018 report from GOP members of the House Intelligence Committee remains the only publicly available assessment of the Brennan-controlled ICA's methodology. One reason for this is the fact that President Obama personally quashed a proposed bipartisan commission of inquiry into alleged Russian interference that would have inevitably subjected Brennan and other top intelligence officials to scrutiny. According to the Washington Post, in the aftermath of the November election, Obama administration officials discussed forming such a commission to conduct a sweeping probe of the alleged Russian interference effort and the U.S. response. But after Obama's then chief-of-staff, Denis McDonough, introduced the proposal, he:

began criticizing it, arguing that it would be perceived as partisan and almost certainly blocked by Congress. Obama then echoed McDonough's critique, effectively killing any chance that a Russia commission would be formed.

With Obama having killed "any chance that a Russia commission would be formed," there has been no thorough, independent oversight of the intelligence process that alleged an interference campaign by Russia and triggered an all-consuming investigation of the Trump campaign's potential complicity.

New Opportunities to Answer Unresolved Questions

Barr's ongoing review, and Mueller's pending appearance before Congress, offer fresh opportunities to re-examine the affair's fundamental inconsistencies. Authorized by the president to declassify documents, Barr could shed light on the role that CrowdStrike and other sources played in informing Mueller and the Brennan-directed ICA's claims of a Russian interference campaign. When he appears before lawmakers, Mueller will likely face questions on other matters: from Democrats, his decision to punt on obstruction; from Republicans, his decision to carry out a prolonged investigation of Trump-Russia collusion despite likely knowing quite early on that there was no such case to make.

If the U.S. government does not have a solid case to make against Russia, then the origins of Russiagate, and its subsequent predominance of U.S. political and media focus, are potentially even more suspect. Given that allegation's importance, and Mueller's own uncertainty and inconsistencies, the special counsel and his aides deserve scrutiny for making a "central allegation" that they have yet to substantiate.

Correction:


Steve Hayes

The US elite jump up and down with moral indignation about an evidence-free allegation of foreign interference in its domestic politics, whilst ignoring actual evidenced foreign interference in its domestic affairs, and all the while constantly interfering in the domestic affairs of foreign countries and boasting about it.
Tim Jenkins
That's an excellent brief summary description of events ongoing, Steve & very telling. I have the feeling that most of the moral indignation is from those with most to hide !
Roberto
The takeaway of 2 1/2 years of nonsense, succinct version:

The congressman asks:
"When you talk about the firm that produced the Steele reporting, the name of the firm that produced that was Fusion GPS. Is that correct?"
"I am not familiar with – with that," Mueller replied.
"It was. It's not a trick question. It was Fusion GPS," Chabot retorted.
The Congressman then asked whether Mueller was familiar with the owner of Fusion GPS.
"That's outside my purview," Mueller replied."

Tim Jenkins
It seems likely, that Trump planned to discredit Robert Mueller's integrity, from the very beginning. Think about it: Robert (d'Mule) Mueller and his history:-

1) Heavy involvement in Uranium One deal, with the Russians.

2) Cover up of all investigations 9/11, as FBI Boss.

3) Clean up of Epstein's abhorrent dealings, last time around.

4) The Great Russia-Hoax, by Magic Mueller & Co.

For my mind, I can imagine BTO -"You ain't seen nothin', yet "

GRAFT
But the lunatics still believe millions upon millions of people believe it still
Cesca
This is just one of the events where the psychopathic scum show how divorced they are from humane consciousness.

They are thick as sh.t when it comes to hiding what they do, have the power to make it hard to find the truth tho.

Tim Jenkins
Coulter was calling for him to be in solitary in a 'SuperMax', as if that would protect him. Meanwhile, Priti Patel wants to bring back the death sentence
(stoooopid woman, not interested in learning, better said, in others learning) 😉

Off with their heads: Final Solutions ? Judge Priti Patel ?

Personally, i'd love to see Epstein in a safe cell, in between Cardinal sinner George d'Pedo Pell & Harvey Weinstein: all with webcams & wifi LIVE & pay per view:-

VIP Big Bro. Chokey & the Bandits, (online Live 🙂 )

I would actually pay to view that, even if only briefly on the BBC, though I've never given a penny to the BBC, since 1979 I swear m8 🙂

mark
The Mueller Report is proof positive that the US is equally adept as Blair and Campbell in producing Dodgy Dossiers.

The poor chap is obviously suffering from advanced Alzheimer's. You'd think they could come up with a better front man for their conspiracy theory.

It was a novel idea to outsource the investigation to Crowdstrike. There's a lot to be said for privatisation. Most commendable. Maybe the next time there's a high profile criminal investigation the FBI will outsource the murder investigation to Sam Spade, Ace Gumshoe.

Roberto
It wasn't [the dreaded, one-day] Alzheimer's. It's a Modified Limited Hangout version of 'I don't recall', 'What page is that on?', 'What page?', 'Oh I see it now', 'Can you repeat the question?', and 'It depends on what the meaning of 'is' is' (well, OK, everything except that – it's copyrighted).
Add dozens of 'That's not my purview' or some variation of it, and 5 hours magically shrinks.
Question This
Why not write an article why so much time, effort & money has been wasted on this subject. Is it a surprise to anyone that competing super powers (I use the term loosely) attempt to interfere in election results? Frankly i take it as given that Russia, USA & US of Europe do so at any & all possible opportunity.

And asking if politicians are corrupt is like asking what colors the sky, we all know the answer.

binra
The lie accuses its own sin in the other – as intent at sustainability of power by deceit. Unravelling to source is the nature of a true harvest.
Each unto its own.
UreKismet
Well IMO you'd be wrong. English elites have been saying "the evil russian other" for at least 200 years. Even in the islands no one sees as a good earner, Aotearoa, has an 'anti russian fort" It was built in the 1880's when some pommie pols beat up a "Russia is trying to steal our empire" scare.
Tim Jenkins
Get Mifsud, Now !
****************

"Mueller does not explain why he included Assange's comments as reported by media outlets in his report but decided not to speak with Assange directly, or ask to see his "physical proof," during a two-year investigation." with an unlimited budget to investigate !

What more than that did you need to know ? Alles Klar and if you are still unsure, then just ask yourself why Bill Binney & Kurt Weibe, ex NSA programmers of "Parallel Platforms", have NOT been called to testify, either ! The technical end 'stuff' proves that Mueller has been lying all along on his 'Witch Hunt' & Russia-Hoax and has NOT been addressing any one of the most important questions & problems that lead to further investigations & indictments of many key figures: which include potentially prosecuting the murderer of Seth Rich and why Mueller charged all others for lying to him during his pathetic investigation, but NOT Jo' MIFSUD ! Mueller himself should be prosecuted for his omissions & failure to prosecute Mifsud & question Richard Dearlove more intensively !

Get Mifsud under Oath immediately: he started all this who the hell is MIFSUD? Why is MIFSUD being protected? What the Fuck were Steele & Mifsud & Dearlove thinking to conspire & concoct on behalf of Deep State Governors & Operatives, who transcend both the USUK Governments combined ! ? !

This is an old article that helps you comprehend something of the background of the lies & deceptions of Mueller's pathetic efforts, & yesterday's statements confirm that he never intended to reveal anything at all, including yesterday, but why do we not have some brief qualification of Mueller's Testimony just yesterday, as an addendum here @OffG ?

How does OffG expect the Brits. to keep up to speed ? Especially, what will happen next with Boris Johnson and his dilemmas @home with GCHQ ? Coz' GCHQ were wholly involved in this TREASON USA attempt & Russia-Hoax, as were Italian Secret Services and the Ukrainian S.S. !

These matters can no longer be resolved behind closed doors, unless you wish to live continuously & forever onwards, under a corporate Fascist Dictatorship of "Parallel Platforms" & Pedophile Politicians ! it's that simple, so take 5 minutes and listen to Jim Jordan cross question Mueller, just yesterday, and you'll begin to see that Mifsud is being protected and we need to know WHY? HOW? & What from ? & by whom Logic, the wholly zionist owned & controlled mainstream media, surely! Coz' the ball is still rolling and it will not stop @Mifsud's desk, nor the boss of GCHQ's desk heads are gonna' roll, when this ball gets finally kicked into the annals of a very pissy secret service "History of the National Security State" and BoJo has some serious thinking to do about how he deals with the nameless cnuts in the British not so civil service, who used orphans kids in Ireland to entrap politicians and leverage any future political discussions with British Pedophile Politicians fully controlled !!!
E.G. GARY HOY !

It should be noted that yesterday, before Bill Barr stepped into his bullet proof vehicle, after answering a few questions to journalists, he beamed the biggest smile I ever saw on his public face and uttered the words "it goes with the territory". Bill Barr has clearly grown more comfortable with where he stands, today and he has no intention of kicking this can of worms down the road, including Jeffrey Epstein & Ghislaine Maxwell, charges will be brought, thankfully finally and Boris Johnson will be forced to reveal much more than he would likely wish regarding "The History of the National Security State" and it will help mask his inevitable blunders, down the road.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/KNIipT35Eh4

You should have, after watching Mueller !

I have pasted three links deliberately so that Admin must read this 😉

DunGroanin
Superb post Tim and a great catch! I missed David Nunes bit yesterday. The PM of GB and Mifsud in full colour! Lol

The Guardian live reporting missed every mention of Steele, Dearlove, a 'Russian' how very suspicious! Lol

I do believe the Russian State is capable of hacking – as is every such capable state in the world. I surmise they did hack – that is the most likely source of the Integrity Initiative / Institute of Statecraft material.

We will see how many independent news sites and bloggers actually exist by their journalism and blogging on this revealed conspiracy.

Tim Jenkins
My pleasure, thanks DG & I honestly 'almost choked' early morning, when sifting through the guardian script writers & their video editing efforts for today's 'damage limitation': (no doubt, on command of GCHQ), just how much key info. was truly omitted, scandalous clearly, 'The Lobby' is working hard on distractions, for not just all the government politicians, but also all journalists & editors: and therefore, Operation Charlemagne never gets mentioned, so that the 'Mifsud confusion' prevails and a disconnect is established from GCHQ, Steele & Treason USA & Epstein Island & Ghislaine Maxwell's historic sexual endeavours to control key political figures' future decision making: which includes Judges, down the line, as well as key figures working on "Parallel Platforms" of computing, within the National Security State throughout NATO nations !
And this all presents a prime opportunity for OffGuardian. 🙂
It will be a tough ole' cookie for Kit to crack: maybe in bite sized pieces, step by step

It's a very real tangled web that transcends borders of governance and forces one to not shy away from the words Corporate Fascist Dictatorship, with zero privacy & total control of all flows of Knowledge,

Not just Scientific . . .
Mercer & Cambridge Analytica ? the tip of the iceberg,
as UreKismet rightly points out below, Carole d'Cad certainly has much to answer for, in the biggest internet Psyop sting & string of distractions from the Key issues of programming our futures, collectively.

UreKismet
AFAIK there is zero evidence that the russian state was involved in the pathetic beauty contest which the US elites use to distract the more credulous citizens every 4 years. Why would they? They know damn well this quadrennial farce is a crooked game from start to finish. A game that only allows the same two contestants, the republican tweedledee and the democrat tweedledum to compete – both sides cheat like f++k on a massive scale so whatever skullduggery the Russian state could insert into that rigged crapshoot would have two chances of success, Buckley's and none.

But more important than even that is, even if the Russian State – oops sorry. . . "Putin" {said quickly with all emphasis on vowels none on consonants so it sounds more like a hoick & spit than a word} by some miracle did succeed so what? You cannot push a decent spliff skin between the dems & rethugs on the stuff which really matters.

Disagree? Check out the Tufts alumni diary entry for yesterday . The article tells us how the Senate Foreign Relations committee, who are the mob allegedly responsible for devising and implementing amerika's foreign policy, actually had a falling out on monday, a disagreement between a dem senator and a rethug member of the old boys steamroom and bar club.

This was the first public contretemps in decades. Wow I bet that was over something vital!

Nah, the dispute was over the murder of that Kashoggi creep, they reckon the dems wanted to slap Saudi with a wet bus ticket, whereas the rethugs preferred a damp feather as the instrument of corporal punishment.

Why on earth would anyone who hadn't bought a seat at the table e.g. the invaders of occupied Palestine waste energy, let alone the $30,000 that crowdstrike claimed Russia had spent on a forlorn hope of trying to get something up like sanctions relief, when everyone knows the correct way to do it is to bribe both sides with tens of millions?

Now "tens of millions" may seem a lot until you understand you will get it all back plus a lot extra for the hassle. Yep the amerikan pols become dependent on your 'donation' real quick. So from then on out, they find a way to give you money for some nonsense program which you then give back to 'em all as donations – less about 95% for expenses natch – but everyone is cool with that, they know there are considerable overheads in the lobbying biz.

That is why just about all of them plan on getting into lobbying themselves – just as soon as their little black books are chocka with the foibles of all the other congress-creeps and senate-slugs.

I watched the netflix doco "The Great Hack" which tries a camera eye view of the Cambridge Analytica investigation. IMO It reveals graun contractor Carole Cadwalladr to be the sort of deeply dedicated journo not too proud to let the facts stand in the way of a good beat up/fit up.

Shockingly for the graun, the target of this character assassination is a 'sister', yep another member of the victimised by patriarchy club.

A young woman by the name of Brittany Kaiser whose parents were financially destroyed by the cfc. After the family home was seized in 2014 she had to quit being an unpaid worker for the dems in DC & took an extremely well paid gig (VP) with CA. Apparently her conscience got the better of her so when the stories about what they and facebook had been doing came out she whistle blew in the US inquiry and the english parliament enquiry.

Too bad Cadwalladr decided she (Kaiser) would be useful in yet another graun attack on Julian Assange.

Kaiser had sent Wikileaks a couple bit coins back in the noughties when she was an idealistic Obama intern and bit coins weren't worth much. Years later she visited Julian at the Ecuador embassy on CA business and she insists that neither Russia or H Clinton's email were discussed, but Cadwalladr ran this article claiming she did both, without a scintalla of watchamacallit – evidence, proof whatsoever.

Of course in reality Kaiser may be nothing like the possum trapped in the headlights she presents as; this is a TV show (all over the torrent and usenet sites if like me, people prefer not to pay for the fibs they are told) in which both Cadwalladr & Kaiser get lots of time. For me Kaiser came across as someone acting more like a human than, the bigger the front, the smaller the back, Cadwalladr did.

None of us can ever know for sure who did what to whom during prez 2016, so we are left with considering the mountains of bulldust using our sense of humanity mixed with the few facts we can be sure of. In that light IMO, it makes zero sense for the Russian state to try on something that is so obviously doomed to fail, so they didn't.

Antonym
Good to see a factually well informed author here ATL void of ideology or theory. Mueller has bended truth when ordered since decades while looking like Eliot Ness. A good fella.
Martin Usher
The fundamental flaw in the whole "Russiagate" thing is the failure to differentiate between Russia, the state and its government, and Russians, individuals who are Russian nationals. This failure is a direct result of an inability to recognize that the Cold War finished 30 years ago, a failure highlighted by the breathless Tom Clancy style of reporting and reinforced by a huge military/industrial complex that recognizes that in the absence of war or threats or war their business is a bust.

I've always maintained that any connections Trump has with Russia are going to be based on money. As in "there are people who have lots of money who need some kind of investment vehicle to launder it" and "a tangled web of casinos and real estate holdings is a perfect laundromat for money of dubious origins". This doesn't automatically suggest that Trump's a money launderer for the Russian mob but rather there's no clear cut line between what's clearly criminal and what's clearly totally legal and a lot of businesses operate in the gray between the two.

(Politically, though, the last word on Trump support was spoken to me by a Hungarian/American colleague who intended to vote for him. He lived in Budapest and his interest wasn't in US domestic politics so much as not being caught in WW3. He thought Hilary was going to start a war, Trump would keep us out. I thought he was being a bit naive (and have been proven right) but you couldn't blame him for exercising an abundance of caution.)

[Jul 29, 2019] WATCH MH17 -- Call for Justice

Jul 29, 2019 | off-guardian.org

Bonanza media investigative team of independent journalists conduct exclusive interviews with one of the suspects in the downing the MH17, the Malaysian prime minister, the colonel that collected the black boxes and much more.

Eye-opening testimonies from witnesses and irrefutable evidence from experts. Exclusive footage shot in Malaysia, the Netherlands and at the crash area in Ukraine.

[Jul 29, 2019] Some people think the notion that Trump is a Kremlin spy is rather fanciful. But if you look more closely, all the evidence is there.

Jul 29, 2019 | off-guardian.org

mark

Some people think the notion that Trump is a Kremlin spy is rather fanciful. But if you look more closely, all the evidence is there.

He once got drunk on a bottle of vodka before he became a teetotaller. He often wears a red tie. He was once seen attending a film performance of "War And Peace." And (a dead giveaway) he has been seen talking to Putin and actually shaking his hand.

And if all that isn't conclusive evidence that he's a Kremlin spy, then I don't know what is.

[Jul 25, 2019] Seven signs of the neoliberal apocalypse by Van Badham

Notable quotes:
"... Now, "we have a comatose world economy held together by debt and central bank money," Keating has said, "Liberal economics has run into a dead end and has had no answer to the contemporary malaise." What does the disavowal mean? In terms of his Labor heir Bill Shorten's growing appetite for redistributive taxation and close relationship to the union movement, it means "if Bill Shorten becomes PM, the rule of engagement between labour and capital will be rewritten," according to The Australian this week. Can't wait! ..."
"... Might be true. But frightening that people should naively still think that democracy is to be found in the 'Dictatorship of the Proletariat' ..."
"... most "isms" kill off their rivals and the unbelievers when they usurp powe ..."
"... Vested interests and the dollar seem to have all the power. Lies and deception are so common the truth is seen as the enemy. The voting public are merely fools for manipulation. Nah, neo-liberalism is not government, it is something far nastier, and clearly not what the public vote for, presuming a vote actually counts for anything anymore. ..."
Dec 25, 2018 | www.theguardian.com

For 40 years, the ideology popularly known as "neoliberalism" has dominated political decision-making in the English-speaking west.

People hate it . Neoliberalism's sale of state assets, offshored jobs, stripped services, poorly-invested infrastructure and armies of the forcibly unemployed have delivered, not promised "efficiency" and "flexibility" to communities, but discomfort and misery. The wealth of a few has now swelled to a level of conspicuousness that must politely be considered vulgar yet the philosophy's entrenched itself so deeply in how governments make decisions and allocate resources that one of its megaphones once declared its triumph "the end of history".

... ... ...

Paul Keating's rejection

It was a year ago that a third sign first appeared, when the dark horse of Australian prime ministers, Paul Keating, made public an on-balance rejection of neoliberal economics. Although Liberal PM Malcolm Fraser instigated Australia's first neoliberal policies, it was Keating's architecture of privatisation and deregulation as a Labor treasurer and prime minister that's most well remembered.

Now, "we have a comatose world economy held together by debt and central bank money," Keating has said, "Liberal economics has run into a dead end and has had no answer to the contemporary malaise." What does the disavowal mean? In terms of his Labor heir Bill Shorten's growing appetite for redistributive taxation and close relationship to the union movement, it means "if Bill Shorten becomes PM, the rule of engagement between labour and capital will be rewritten," according to The Australian this week. Can't wait!

Tony Abbott becomes a fan of nationalising assets

Or maybe's Sukkar's right about the socialists termiting his beloved Liberal party. How else to explain the earthquake-like paradigm shift represented by the sixth sign? Since when do neoliberal conservatives argue for the renationalisation of infrastructure, as is the push of Tony Abbott's gang to nationalise the coal-fired Liddell power station? It may be a cynical stunt to take an unscientific stand against climate action, but seizing the means of production remains seizing the means of production, um, comrade. "You know, nationalising assets is what the Liberal party was founded to stop governments doing," said Turnbull, even as he hid in the dens and in the rocks of the mountains to weather – strange coincidence – yet another Newspoll loss.

• Van Badham is a Guardian Australia columnist


uhurhi , 27 Apr 2018 05:43

"new introduction to a re-released Marx and Engels' Communist Manifesto. Collective, democratic political action is our only chance for freedom and enjoyment."

Might be true. But frightening that people should naively still think that democracy is to be found in the 'Dictatorship of the Proletariat' [ ie those who know what's good for you even if you don't like it ] of the Communist Manifesto after the revelations of what that leads to in the Gulag Archipelago , Mao's China , Pol Pot , Kim John - un .

How quickly the world forgets. - you might just as well advocate Mein Kampf it's the same thing in the end !

fleax -> internationalist07 07 , 27 Apr 2018 05:43
most "isms" kill off their rivals and the unbelievers when they usurp power
charleyb23 -> RedmondM , 27 Apr 2018 05:37
That's what you claim and it might be so but I'm not interested in keeping a score on the matter. The point you failed to get is that the people you mentioned where totalitarian thugs. They used the banner of communism to achieve their ends. They would have used what ever ideology that was in fashion to achieve the same results.
daily_phil , 27 Apr 2018 05:35
Does present day neo-liberalism actually qualify as a political movement?

Vested interests and the dollar seem to have all the power. Lies and deception are so common the truth is seen as the enemy. The voting public are merely fools for manipulation. Nah, neo-liberalism is not government, it is something far nastier, and clearly not what the public vote for, presuming a vote actually counts for anything anymore.

[Jul 23, 2019] Silicon Valley guints first enabled protest against neoliberalism includiong right wing populasm but now are trying to supress it

Jul 23, 2019 | www.theguardian.com

TashiDelek , 24 Jan 2019 13:41

Tech platforms circumvented the MSM and allowed different voices to be heard. Policing these platforms are still currently beyond the capabilities of tech companies. Content censorship is a main focus of AI right now. You can expect an impersonal, Stalinist PC police in every platform very soon.
Gegenbeispiel -> MoBro999 , 23 Jan 2019 09:05
Narratives themselves are the problem.

We need to be looking at the current situation. History (almost entirely an extremely unpleasant horror show) is only relevant in that we have to deal with its mostly negative relics.

UpVoteThis -> DasInternaut , 23 Jan 2019 08:32
Your way of looking at things assumes that everybody has convergent interests. The populists argument is that those smart guys in power are only looking after their own interests and not everybody else's.
daWOID -> Kapone78 , 23 Jan 2019 02:23
Fighting ignorance with ignorance? Not a cool move, Comrade.

"[Marx] had few qualms about colonialism as many leftists in the 19th century."
1] Read Marx's stuff on India and Ireland and American Slavery.

2] "Marx didn't say much about culture."
Intro to the Grundrisse? Feuerbach Theses? German Ideology? All of what's been dismissed as the "Humanist" Marx, meaning almost everything written before Capital?

3] " it is actually right-wingers who have used Gramsci's concept of Cultural Hegemony with both hands."
Read up. Here's for starters:

Which brings me to the gist:
"Cultural Marxism," also known as Western Marxism, non-Leninist Marxism, etc. etc. Stuff they can't accuse of being in collusion with Marxist-Leninism, Stalinism, etc. Ranging from late Engels to Adorno to Benjamin to Sartre and beyond.

""Bannon, Kristol and many other have read him extensively."
About as much as you have, pal.

999Jasper , 23 Jan 2019 01:55

This is a paradox that clever progressives ought to be able to exploit, if only by asking non-American rightwing populists to explain their great love for an industry that even Steve Bannon considers to be "evil".

It doesn't seem to have occurred to the author that the American populist right, not the European populist right, has the weaker argument, when it comes to Silicon Valley.

I think Big Tech ought to pay higher taxes (and I vehemently oppose the scandalous subsidies and tax breaks they receive), but I think that's the case with all vastly wealthy corporate interests, including such sectors as finance, property, bio-pharma, and energy.

I'm not much of a fan of Facebook, but in general my life's loads more convenient and affordable because of the likes of Google, Netflix, Amazon, Uber and Airbnb. Plus, you know, they seem to piss off Trump and Bannon. So that's a plus.

Kapone78 , 23 Jan 2019 00:46
As a Marxist, I would like someone to explain to me the meaning of the expression "cultural Marxism".

It's cool to be an intellectual onanist or an outright bell-end (like Bolsonaro's minister who said that global warming was a Marxist plot), but words have meanings and it would be nice to use words carefully.

The bloody irony of "cultural Marxism" is that even though Marx didn't say much about culture, LGBTQ(put another letter here) or minorities (he had few qualms about colonialism as many leftists in the 19th century), it is actually right-wingers who have used Gramsci's concept of Cultural Hegemony with both hands.

Bannon, Kristol and many other have read him extensively and have the cheek to criticise others for promoting "cultural Marxism", which is a figment of their imagination.

Cultural Marxism is the Godwin point of intellectual discourse.

StephenO , 23 Jan 2019 00:28

The American wing of the movement sees big tech as an attractive target of attack....

One of those statements that indicates how deep you are wandering in the woods. There is an onslaught of EU countries and EU councils that have sued big tech in the US. The investigations don't stop and the threats don't stop.

In 2018, the EU hit Google with a fine of $5 billion in an antitrust verdict with respect to the Android operating system. In 2017, the EU hit Google with a $2.7 billion judgement with respect to displaying advertisements.

That is just the recent material with respect to Google.

The biggest pressure faced by Facebook (again) comes from the left. The pressures over data, the race to take-down opposing viewpoints and the fines for non-compliance. Facebook has been forced by the left to hire so many "fact-checkers" that it has affected its profitability. (Recent discoveries reveal that Mark Zuckerberg lied to Congress -- a felony offense.)

... as bashing it helps to delegitimize the legacy of Obama and Clinton, seen as its primary enablers.

The Clinton's have amassed a remarkable trail of felony violations in many areas. Continued pressure against the swamp is slowly removing their layers of protection. Documents and evidence are also appearing that implicates Obama and some advisers in various illegal activities in 2016 with respect to the FBI and DOJ.

That process continues to move forward, irregardless of the House.

cyberclark , 22 Jan 2019 19:29
The Right Wing Christian parties have found the Immigrant hot button with which to field their arguments. Loosely knitted with finance to hide their real purpose, they are finding success. I say, unmask them for their actual fears propelled by underlying bigotry and fear.
iruka , 22 Jan 2019 16:51

"Big tech monsters like Google and Facebook have become nothing less than incubators for far-left liberal ideologies and are doing everything they can to eradicate conservative ideas and their proponents from the internet."

If only it were true.

No fan of Mussolini, but he did oversee the eradication of malaria in Italy.

And I love free speech, but it's hard to justify the proposition that "conservative ideas" really constitute a set of ideas, a coherent perspective. They're more accurately understood as a set of noises, devoid of coherent meaning, made while harming oneself and others.... They're just more verbose versions of, say, the inarticulate noises made by a headmaster while whipping a young child for some fabricated misdemeanour. Noises the child will learn to make while punishing others......

StephenO , 22 Jan 2019 16:06

But there's one issue on which there's no agreement between American rightwing populists and their peers in the rest of the world: what to make of Silicon Valley. On the one hand, its services and platforms have been a boon to the populists everywhere...

Followed by more strawmen and generalized incoherence. In a recent speech, Macron started by reminding his audience of Marie-Antoinette and King Louis XVI. The later was decapitated because of a poor economic performance and wide-spread discontent.

And in 1517, the theologian Martin Luther nailed Thesis 86 to a church door and started the Protestant Reformation.

In Morozov's scope of history, humanity has never experienced a social eruption, revolution, or change of direction until Silicon Valley. That is not surprising since the progressive left's extent of history begins around 1932.

Also, the author's knowledge of Silicon Valley's history is heavily flawed with biases and fraudulent presentations.

Peter Gray -> Gegenbeispiel , 22 Jan 2019 15:53
Tech isn't new anymore. Silicon Valley is almost 40 years old in terms of its social impact. That's equivalent to the 1960s for the US car industry, which is about the time that the social and political negatives of car ownership began to manifest in public debate. The novelty of big tech has begun wearing off as its early benefits fade, and the costs to society linger. It's the rest of the world that is lagging behind the USA in terms of disillusionment
Peter Gray -> 1Eloise , 22 Jan 2019 15:48
The far left and the far right have a point about tech. Silicon Valley has always had lamentable political tendencies: a love of both neoliberalism, a penchance for "Singaporean" authoritarianism, and an ungainly mix of personal hubris and pseudomessianic claptrap. In the US big tech is guilty of overselling itself to the public while just proving to be little better at corporate citizenship than oil companies.
Layng1 , 22 Jan 2019 11:52
The ambition and business method of all social media is to create a condition of extreme excitability, reactiveness and strong engagement by users so as to maximize participation and thereby to drive revenue streams, whether these are advertising or product sales or data acquisition for future commercial exploitation.

Accordingly, Big Tech relies on the hyper provocation and ultra engagement of the "2 minutes hate" as it is described by some.

It's like throwing out morsels of raw meat to a group of crocodiles or alligators and watching the feeding frenzy.

The commercial model of Big Tech demands the strong drivers of intense hate, fear, envy and even hostility.

Negative emotions, acting on the more primitive parts of the brain, subvert our critical faculties and drive our impulsive and destructive behaviours for the advantage of Big Tech.

Politically correct and worthy speech will ertainly not optimize the revenues. You need the fulminating hate merchants, the graders, the nasties and the trolls. That gets other users highly exercised and strongly engaged.

I know of few social media based outlets which cynically and manipulatively use a few social provocateurs to throw out incendiary and provocative hate speech so as to get the punters enraged and engaged.

Alt-right and hard right sells. Hate speech stimulates.

The commercial objective is to get the online dogs salivating out of a Pavlovian reaction to the trigger bells of hate, discrimination, fear of migrants, provocation over identity issues, fear of being swamped, loss if he familiar and the rise tinted but deceptive lens of nostalgia for a wholly fictitious imagined past.

Layng1 -> irishmaninholland , 22 Jan 2019 11:33
Gd point. The ambition of all social media is to create a condition of extreme excitability, reactive ness and engagement so as to maximize participation and thereby to drive revenue streams.

Excellent and apposite reference to Orwell in this context.

Big Tech relies on the hyper privication and engagement of the "2 minutes hate" as you aptly describe it.

It's like throwing out morsels ofvraw meet to a group of crocodiles or alligators and watching the feeding frenzy.

The commercial model of Big Tech demands the drivers of hate, fear, envy and even hostility. Negative emotions, acting on the more primitive parts of the brain, subvert our critical faculties and drive our impulsive and destructive behaviors.

Politically correct and worthy speech will not optimize the revenues.

I know of few social media based outlets which cynically and manipulatively use a few social provocateurs to throw out incendiary and provocative hate speech so as to get the punters engaged.

Alt-right and hard right sells. Hate speech stimulates.

Get the online dogs salivating out of a Pavlovian reaction to the trigger bells.

MatthewHenson -> bradgate , 22 Jan 2019 09:49
And as we have seen with Facebook's monthly scandals they are not going to behave better unless they are forced to. It would be good to have governments that might help: right now that's the EU alone, China being a special case.
jonniestewpot -> edmundberk , 22 Jan 2019 09:46

Left wing is not really to do with labour politics anymore

Of course it is though that was simply a vehicle to uplift the whole of society making it egalitarian. Silicon Valley can only be implicated as left wing as communism for the rich. In no respect are they looking for equality quite the reverse their celebrated ideal is the emancipation of the individual to be great wealth creators, if they have a social conscience their beneficence will be to become philanthropists creating another legacy from their wealth.

You can see why European fascist like them they were always happy to work with capitalists in the past. It seems their US counterparts are behind the curve on that.

Layng1 , 22 Jan 2019 08:22
Big Tech preserves the surface veneer of democracy whilst controlling the prejudices and direction of the electorates.

Big Tech assimilates us into a hive mind. It is not yet absolute but we are well on the way to being controlled by those who use Big Tech to direct us.

Only the far right libertarian billionaires can afford to use Big Tech to impose their wishes.

Democracy is being replaced by a toxic mix of plutocracy, technocracy and a mobbing mass directed like a murmurstion of starlings.

Read Shoshana Zuboff's book, "Surveillance Capitalism" for an insight.

I consume social media and technology; therefore I am.

MoBro999 -> Tiny Toy , 22 Jan 2019 08:08
"The rhetoric of hatred and divisiveness only has one logical conclusion, which is ultimately to pit every individual against every other individual. The order in which they do so is not some kind of universal, it's a complex product of cultural fears and how they can be exploited."

But ironically the obsession with "identity politics" the erasure of wider communities in favour of further and further fragmentation- seen as "progressive", is helping to deliver the same agenda. is it not? It concentrates on what makes us different, not what makes us similar.

Smolker -> PeppermintSeal , 22 Jan 2019 07:54

No, they've provided a platform for almost anyone to encourage and amplify their message, including far-left, far-right, people looking for missing cats etc.

I made this point in my original post.

You seem to be agreeing with me for the sake of disagreement, as a mechanism to get your point across, in the process omitting and skewing the points I made.

You subtly edited one of my statements to omit the term capital. My full sentence was as below:

We're in a desperate situation where capital and tech giants have utilised social media to encourage, amplify and legitimise the very worst human impulses.

The point here is that capital has a tremedous advantage over smaller and grass roots movements because it can employ companies such as Cambridge Analytica and Aggregate IQ to mobilise opinion.*

In this arena, as in every arena, money helps people seize and bolster power. The assertion that left and right can exert the same influence in this domain is a false equivalence.

Social media isn't a channel through which all views can flow equally. Your claim to this effect is either disingenuous or naive.

* They're the same company, but that's another discussion.

Gegenbeispiel , 22 Jan 2019 07:28
Here's a sound analysis of the global economy for you, Zhenya: capitalism is an unrecoverable failure. Wreck it, scrap it, replace it by egalitarian cybernetically centrally-planned low-competition, moderated-consumption leisure-oriented socialism with a private sector limited to 30% of GDP or less.
partoftheproblem , 22 Jan 2019 07:08
One thing that appears to be missing from this is the recent trend in rightwing populists being kicked off online payment processes services & fund raising tools, not to mention twitter and similar social media platforms. It's easy enough to understand the

Alex Jones/Infowars being banned from paypal being one such example, another interesting one is, again, paypal and them banning the Proud Boys , the amusing part is they banned Antifa groups as well for violating the same terms of service.

Throw in social media sites "Purging political discussions" and it's easy to see how there's going to be hate from populists. Social media has become a vital tool of political discussion, but it's not... yet stable, the platform providers are reactionary and inconsistent in their approach to sorting problems.

PenneArrabiata -> callaspodeaspode , 22 Jan 2019 07:04
I think this can be explained by the American propensity to conflate "conservatism" with "market liberalism". It's a sleight of hand that really confuses some people.
edmundberk -> ID1174659 , 22 Jan 2019 07:02
Left wing is not really to do with labour politics anymore, if it ever was. Arguably it was only ever a useful grievance to be harnessed that has long been superseded. Harnessed to the goal of remaking mankind to the favoured plan of upper middle class utopians. I think that at bottom that is what leftism is in its essence.
callaspodeaspode , 22 Jan 2019 07:00
The idea that these most ludicrously successful and world-bestriding capitalist enterprises are founded and staffed by Marxists, or folks who are pretty much indistinguishable from Marxists, would, one might think, be something that would engender a long and thoughtful period of reflectio
Gary Cross -> expatinscandinavia , 22 Jan 2019 06:53
Big tech are a classic example of those who are "socially liberal but fiscally conservative". In other words, are happy to have compassion and a conscience...as long as it doesn't cost them anything.
ValuedCustomer -> Smolker , 22 Jan 2019 06:52
The assumption among academics was that, should new media democratise our politics it would, naturally, advantage the left. The people would throw off their shackles and reclaim authority from capital. The wave would be egalitarian rather than divisive.

Capital has successfully devised an ersatz, designedly harmless (to them) "left" and used its class/cultural power to squash and demonise the real thing.

How do we begin to fight back? Can we fight back?

Sure. The bourgeoisie's exploitation of our common decency has pretty much exhausted itself. It's essential that new left currents are exclusively proletarian however.

[Jul 23, 2019] Silicon Valley moguls, their social platforms, and far right nationalist protest movements against neoliberalism

Jul 23, 2019 | discussion.theguardian.com

Smolker -> expatinscandinavia , 22 Jan 2019 06:50

I don't think either 'side' is necessarily wrong here. The social media giants are generally made up of left-leaning people; not necessarily surprising given that they're based in California and are made up of relatively young college graduates.

This is fundamentally untrue.

At best these people have appropriated socially liberal attitudes because it suits their capitalist instincts.

There's a market for social liberalism. Tech giants and their owners have branded aspects of their companies accordingly.

If the money flows in the other direction, these same companies and owners will profit from this stream without compunction. Increasingly that's where the money streams from.

These people are capital. Their ethics stretch no further than their bottom line.

Zuckerberg et al. sell notions of "hacking the system" only to service a profit imperative. Indeed, they've "hacked" publishing laws to dodge accountability.

The last thing they are is left wing.

PenneArrabiata , 22 Jan 2019 06:49
I don't think this article is very coherent.

Bannon, while condemning Silicon Valley, is one of the main proponents of the use of its platforms in propaganda. Indeed, it was central to the 2016 election of Trump and the campaigns he has overseen in Europe.

What he describes as "evil" are the utopian tech barons, as they are an easy target for popular hate. This is, of course, rank hypocrisy - as he and his "pro-business" allies are neither calling for them to be taxed nor brought down to size, and they are quite happy to use their services.

Therefore, I don't think there is a divide between the US far right or their offshoots around the world. The paradox at the centre of all these movements is that they are both for and against powerful elites, when it suits them.

dsdsdsdsds -> DoctorWibble , 22 Jan 2019 06:48
The arab spring was initially viewed by many as an anti US uprising using the freedom of the internet.
When it didnt deliver honey and unicorns, by many it was retrospectively recast as a US coup using a US corporation controlled by zionists.
jon9521 -> dsdsdsdsds , 22 Jan 2019 06:41
Its not the medium it is the ownership and the bias behind it. TV media today is left wing biased not just in UK but US and other western countries too. Similarly, we have to look at the ownership of the big internet companies and their bias today also.
ID1174659 -> expatinscandinavia , 22 Jan 2019 06:41
If you have a questionable attitude to tax you are NOT left wing. More Libertarian.
bradgate , 22 Jan 2019 06:40
The tech giants don't care about 'left' or 'right', 'conservative' or 'progressive'. They care about money and they care about enriching their senior executives and shareholders.
DoctorWibble , 22 Jan 2019 06:37
It wasn't that long ago that progressives bubbled over with excitement at the role played by Twitter and Facebook in the Arab Spring. And of course no profession has embraced Twitter more enthusiastically than journalists. If that was removed half our newspapers would be blank pages. Ambivalence about the big social media platforms is not unique to populists. If your ideas get traction on it you like it. If your opponents ideas get traction you don't. Not entirely unlike traditional media in this respect.
Smolker , 22 Jan 2019 06:34
The advent of social media produced an upswell of academic papers and arguments.

As the internet became a growing cultural and political tool, the framing question for much academic debate was as follows:

Will "new media" democratise our culture and politics, or be co-opted by established actors to bolster their hegemonic status.

The assumption among academics was that, should new media democratise our politics it would, naturally, advantage the left. The people would throw off their shackles and reclaim authority from capital. The wave would be egalitarian rather than divisive.

Post-Brexit and Trump, this assumption has been exposed as deeply flawed.

While Western politics has become increasingly polarised, the beneficiaries have been the increasingly hard to far right.

We're in a desperate situation where capital and tech giants have utilised social media to encourage, amplify and legitimise the very worst human impulses.

How do we begin to fight back? Can we fight back?

dsdsdsdsds , 22 Jan 2019 06:34
Isnt this just the modern equivalent of 1950s republicans complaining that new fangled TV makes JFK seem better looking and more likely to win elections? You cant uninvent TV or the internet.
Barack Obama was the pioneer of using social media to help win elections but there was zero outcry about it.
geniusofmozart -> Laurence Bury , 22 Jan 2019 06:32
Automation will likely eliminate all jobs eventually. The idea that it's a tool of the liberal centre to displace the "provincial periphery" is nonsense.
unclestinky , 22 Jan 2019 06:27

Steve Bannon called people leading "evil" Silicon Valley "complete narcissists" and "sociopaths"

Now who else does that remind me of Steve?
Nada89 , 22 Jan 2019 06:23
2008 was the pivotal year that trust was lost in the banks, the political class and the media; all three have been fighting a rearguard action ever since.

The crash saw politicians use public money to bail out the banks while the media were complicit in subverting this reality, blaming certain groups for causing the melt down (such as the poor, the feckless, migrants, etc).

In the meantime things have become much worse guaranteeing that the next crash (which is just round the corner) will be far worse than 2008 because borrowing has reached such stratospheric proportions, while none of the root causes of 2008 have been addressed - the likes of the Yellow Vests in France are probably a taste of what is to come.

Most of the arguments around the digital media are driven by a desire to surpress the nature of previous and coming economic catastrophes in my opinion typified by some of the groups who are trying to exploit the lack of honesty about why living conditions are under threat in places like Spain, Greece and the North of England.

DasInternaut , 22 Jan 2019 06:21
So outside of the US, populist see social media as a way out of some sort dictatorship by people smarter than themselves? That's just perverse. I want the damned country to be run by people who are smarter than I am. I hope this will actually happen one day.
Laurence Bury , 22 Jan 2019 06:19
I tend to think that the Atlanticists are right here - Big Tech represents the liberal centre who would happily replace the provincial periphery with robots for cultural as well as economic reasons.
In Continental Europe, the new populism is nascent and so as we saw with the leader-less Gilets jaunes, folk are still excited about the self-organisation potential of the Net.
expatinscandinavia , 22 Jan 2019 06:12
I don't think either 'side' is necessarily wrong here. The social media giants are generally made up of left-leaning people; not necessarily surprising given that they're based in California and are made up of relatively young college graduates. And yes, they are getting filthy rich off the backs of some questionable policies and, in some instances, questionable approaches to taxation.

For all the faults of the left and right populists, and there are many, I think they are right in thinking that the big tech companies are no angels.

[Jul 23, 2019] US justice department targets big tech firms in antitrust review by Kari Paul and agencies

Jul 23, 2019 | www.theguardian.com

The US justice department is opening a broad antitrust review into major technology firms, as criticism over the companies' growing reach and power heats up.

The investigation will focus on growing complaints that the companies are unlawfully stifling competition.

"The Department's review will consider the widespread concerns that consumers, businesses and entrepreneurs have expressed about search, social media, and some retail services online," the Department of Justice said in a statement.

ss="rich-link"> A new antitrust frontier – the issue closing partisan divides in the name of policing big tech Read more

"Without the discipline of meaningful market-based competition, digital platforms may act in ways that are not responsive to consumer demands," added the assistant attorney general Makan Delrahim, of the antitrust division.

The review will investigate practices of online platforms including Facebook , Alphabet's Google, Amazon and Apple.

The investigation comes amid calls from lawmakers, including Democratic presidential candidates such as Elizabeth Warren, that the companies should face more scrutiny.

Lat week, Facebook, Google, and Amazon faced a grilling before the House subcommittee on antitrust, commercial and administrative law over their hold on markets including digital advertising, e-commerce and cloud computing.

Lawmakers questioned Amazon over the fees it levies against third-party sellers on the platform and whether this creates a monopoly of power. They also questioned Facebook executives over practices of targeting startups for acquisition and copying features of companies that decline to be acquired.

Lawmakers also grilled Facebook this month over its plans to launch a global cryptocurrency, called Libra. In the hearing, Senator Sherrod Brown of Ohio said Facebook showed "breathtaking arrogance" in attempting to launch a digital financial service after a number of major privacy scandals.

In July, the Federal Trade Commission approved a $5bn fine against Facebook for its handling of user data surrounding the Cambridge Analytica scandal in 2018.

"Facebook is dangerous," Brown said, likening the company to a toddler playing with matches. "It has burned the house down repeatedly and called every attempt a learning experience. Do you really think people should trust you with their bank accounts and their money?"

The Department of Justice investigation is already under way, the Wall Street Journal reported on Tuesday. The department hosted a private presentation from critics of big technology companies, who walked legislators through concerns and arguments for breaking up the firms.

Facebook, Alphabet , Amazon and Apple did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

[Jul 23, 2019] Jeffrey Epstein scandal women with new identities run firms from Epstein-linked property US news> by Jon Swaine

Notable quotes:
"... Two women questioned about Prince Andrew in 2010, operating businesses from New York property years after appearing to have left Epstein's entourage ..."
"... Sarah Kellen and Nada Marcinkova, questioned by lawyers about whether Prince Andrew had any involvement in Epstein's abuse, have reinvented themselves as Sarah Kensington and Nadia Marcinko. Photograph: the guardian Two of Jeffrey Epstein's alleged accomplices are running businesses from a Manhattan property linked to the wealthy sex offender under new identities, years after appearing to have left his scandal-plagued entourage. ..."
"... Virginia Roberts, who has long claimed that she was Epstein's "sex slave", alleged in a US court filing last week that she was forced to have sexual relations with Andrew. The prince vehemently denies the allegation against him and is under intense pressure to fully account for his friendship with Epstein. ..."
"... Kellen was accused by lawyers in legal filings of "bringing girls to Epstein's mansion to be abused". According to police files, a series alleged victims of Epstein told investigators that they were led to a massage room in Epstein's mansion in Palm Beach, Florida, by a woman named Sarah. ..."
"... One alleged victim claimed to police that she was told Marcinkova had been bought from her parents in eastern Europe by Epstein when she was 15, according to detectives. One alleged that she was made to have sex with Marcinkova and to watch her have sex with Epstein. ..."
"... Sarah Kellen, now Kensington, with boyfriend Brian Vickers. Kellen was accused by lawyers in legal filings of 'bringing girls to Epstein's mansion to be abused'. ..."
"... Attorneys for Epstein did not respond to an email asking whether Epstein had assisted his former associates in any way in securing their new identities, establishing their businesses or in maintaining the property. ..."
"... Marcinkova and Kellen did not respond on Tuesday to telephone calls, voicemails, emails and text messages seeking comment. Attorneys who represented them when they were questioned in 2010 did not respond to queries about whether they still spoke for the women. ..."
Jan 07, 2015 | www.theguardian.com

Jeffrey Epstein scandal: women with new identities run firms from Epstein-linked property

This article is more than 4 years old

Two women questioned about Prince Andrew in 2010, operating businesses from New York property years after appearing to have left Epstein's entourage

Jon Swaine in New York

Sarah Kellen and Nada Marcinkova, questioned by lawyers about whether Prince Andrew had any involvement in Epstein's abuse, have reinvented themselves as Sarah Kensington and Nadia Marcinko. Photograph: the guardian Two of Jeffrey Epstein's alleged accomplices are running businesses from a Manhattan property linked to the wealthy sex offender under new identities, years after appearing to have left his scandal-plagued entourage.

Nada Marcinkova and Sarah Kellen, who were questioned by lawyers about whether Prince Andrew had any involvement in Epstein's abuse of underage girls, have since reinvented themselves as Nadia Marcinko and Sarah Kensington.

Marcinkova, 29, is now a pilot and the chief executive of Aviloop, a website selling discounted flying lessons and other deals related to aviation. Kellen, 34, states that she is the owner of SLK Designs, a renovations firm.

However according to public records, both businesses have operated from addresses in a building on East 66th Street in Manhattan majority-owned by Epstein's brother Mark, a wealthy property magnate. Two condominiums in the building sold last year for $2.5m and $1.85m.

Nada Marcinkova, left and Sarah Kellen, second from right. Via newyorksocialdiary.com Photograph: newyorksocialdiary.com

Marcinkova's company is officially registered with New York authorities at the building. Import records show that Kellen's company takes deliveries there.

Jeffrey Epstein , a friend of Andrew's who was jailed in 2008 for soliciting prostitution from a minor, was accused in 2011 court documents of using the building to house young women. Several rented condominiums in the building have been lived in by Epstein associates, according to public records.

Mark Epstein said in a brief telephone interview on Tuesday: "I own the majority of the units in the building, but I've never heard of those companies," referring to the firms run by Marcinkova and Kellen.

Virginia Roberts, who has long claimed that she was Epstein's "sex slave", alleged in a US court filing last week that she was forced to have sexual relations with Andrew. The prince vehemently denies the allegation against him and is under intense pressure to fully account for his friendship with Epstein.

Marcinkova and Kellen were among four named Epstein associates identified by US government prosecutors as "potential co-conspirators" who would avoid charges under the controversial plea deal Epstein struck in 2007, which saw him serve just over year in jail for his offences.

The two women both cited their right under the US constitution to avoid incriminating themselves when they were asked a series of questions by lawyers for alleged victims of Epstein under oath in 2010 – including whether underaged girls were forced to have sex with Andrew.

Kellen was accused by lawyers in legal filings of "bringing girls to Epstein's mansion to be abused". According to police files, a series alleged victims of Epstein told investigators that they were led to a massage room in Epstein's mansion in Palm Beach, Florida, by a woman named Sarah.

One alleged victim claimed to police that she was told Marcinkova had been bought from her parents in eastern Europe by Epstein when she was 15, according to detectives. One alleged that she was made to have sex with Marcinkova and to watch her have sex with Epstein.

Marcinkova's biography on the Aviloop website now states: "Over the years, she has proven herself to be a distinguished entrepreneur". In addition to carrying out international design work, Kellen is in a relationship with a successful Nascar driver, stating on her website that "most of my fans know that I am Brian Vickers' girlfriend".

Sarah Kellen, now Kensington, with boyfriend Brian Vickers. Kellen was accused by lawyers in legal filings of 'bringing girls to Epstein's mansion to be abused'.

The domains for both websites are registered through the same Arizona-based service that allows the identities and contact details of the website owner to be shielded from public view.

Attorneys for Epstein did not respond to an email asking whether Epstein had assisted his former associates in any way in securing their new identities, establishing their businesses or in maintaining the property.

Marcinkova and Kellen did not respond on Tuesday to telephone calls, voicemails, emails and text messages seeking comment. Attorneys who represented them when they were questioned in 2010 did not respond to queries about whether they still spoke for the women.

Mark Epstein said that his brother did not own any of the units in the building. Asked how it came to be that associates of his brother lived in the building, Mark Epstein said: "They're rentals. The ones I own, I rent all of them out." Asked whether he owned the units where associates of his brother lived or registered businesses, Mark Epstein said: "I don't know, and even if I knew, that's not information I'm giving you."

"I don't keep track, I've owned them for 20-something-odd years and I don't know," Mark Epstein said, when asked if he owned a unit that according to public records Kellen once used. "There's only a few people I know who live there, such as friends," he said.

[Jul 22, 2019] The press of the United States? It is a parasitic growth that battens on the capitalist class

Jul 22, 2019 | jessescrossroadscafe.blogspot.com

"The press of the United States? It is a parasitic growth that battens on the capitalist class. Its function is to serve the established by moulding public opinion, and right well it serves it.

I know nothing that I may say can influence you. You have no souls to be influenced. You are spineless, flaccid things. You pompously call yourselves Republicans and Democrats. There is no Republican Party. There is no Democratic Party.

There are no Republicans nor Democrats in this House. You are lick-spittlers and panderers, the creatures of the Plutocracy.

You talk verbosely in antiquated terminology of your love of liberty, and all the while you wear the scarlet livery of the Iron Heel."

Jack London, The Iron Heel

[Jul 20, 2019] Whenever the Tories get into trouble, the BBC helps them out

Jul 20, 2019 | failedevolution.blogspot.com

Whenever the Tories get into trouble, the BBC helps them out July 18, 2019 While the BBC ratchets up its campaign against the Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, the timing of its Panorama programme couldn't have been more perfect.
by Readers of The National
Part 2
I HAVE never seen such a one-sided, biased documentary as the BBC Panorama programme on antisemitism in the Labour party. This was backed up by biased coverage on news programmes on TV and radio. Those of us in Scotland have become used to BBC bias in the coverage of independence, which is why the BBC in Scotland has the highest number on people refusing to pay the licence fee.

Now people in England are experiencing this level of bias I predict the number of non-payers will rise significantly too. Of course we can protest, but the evidence is from Scotland that the BBC ignore the protests.
For the record, as a former Labour party member for many years and a councillor and an MEP I never encountered anti-semitism in the Labour party, indeed Jewish members were active in every section of the party without encountering any prejudice. The so-called problem has only begun when Jeremy Corbyn became Labour leader – not because he is anti-semitic.

I've known Jeremy Corbyn for more than 40 years and he is a committed anti-racist. He has been targeted because he is a supporter of Palestinian rights, and the people attacking him inside and outside the Labour party have close connections to the Israeli Government. Indeed Al Jazeera have a very good documentary of people from the Israeli embassy boasting they have a fund of a million pounds a year to bring down their enemies.
Of course if I was a member of the Labour party I could be expelled for stating the above, but fortunately in Scotland our First Minister is on record as supporting Palestinian rights. No doubt we can expect accusations of anti-semitism soon. It is not anti-semitic to criticise the state of Israel for its dreadful treatment of Palestinians and I hope we in Scotland can continue to uphold that right despite the BBC's dreadful bias!
Hugh Kerr (former Labour MEP)/Edinburgh

Source:

https://www.thenational.scot/politics/17767070.whenever-tories-get-trouble-bbc-helps/

[Jul 19, 2019] Why The BBC acts as a Propaganda Outlet for Israel An Insider View by Gilad Atzmon

Jul 19, 2019 | www.unz.com

Q: Who and what drove this cultural and political direction within the corporation?

A: There are a number of drivers behind this biased BBC culture. The most important is the fact that a small number of hardline Zionists occupy key positions at the top and middle levels of the corporation, as well as at the shop-floor level, by which I mean the people who select what to publish or broadcast on a daily basis and who provide editorial steer to journalists. This has been widely publicised and has been in the public domain for some time -- see, for example, this http://tinyurl.com/ydhjzeek , these (a) http://tinyurl.com/y7mjtkc6 , (b) http://tinyurl.com/y7k39vsh , and (c) http://tinyurl.com/y3x9nktl . Also see this http://tinyurl.com/y6ne4apn and this http://tinyurl.com/y7l88zwl .

Q: What about political impartiality, supposedly a core BBC value?

A: Unfortunately, there are many examples of such pro- Israel hype, some blatant and others who slant the news by use of emphasis and/or omission. For instance, there was Sarah Montague's interview with Israel's defence minister, Moshe Ya'alon , in March 2015, Head of Statistics' Anthony Reuben's reflection on fatalities in Gaza ( http://tinyurl.com/ycc9p8d4 ), and the utilization of Gil Hoffman, an Israeli army reservist and chief political correspondent for the Jerusalem Post to write for the BBC News website ( http://tinyurl.com/yanppk93 ) to mention but a few.

Q: Does the broadcaster have the means or inclination to fix itself ?

A: In my opinion, the chances of the BBC fixing itself is about zero. Apart from what I have said above, it is a cowardly, spineless organisation. Not only does it always pursue the path of least resistance by selecting to broadcast what is least likely to upset the Zionist lobby, but it is also deadly afraid of what the Daily Mail might say about its output. Very often, and by that I mean almost on a daily basis, one would hear senior managers ask at the morning agenda-setting editorial meetings, "What would the Daily Mail say about that?" Invariably, they would choose what is least likely to be picked up and criticised by the Daily Mail. Please remember, this is a public broadcaster that is funded by taxpayers (yes, the License Fee is a tax) and is supposed to "Educate, Inform and Entertain", not propagandise on behalf of Israel.

Q: Some of the so-called Labour 'Whistleblowers' were exposed by Al Jazeera as Israeli Lobby assets . Is it possible that the BBC was so bold as to interview these characters hoping that no one would notice or was it simply a matter of a clumsy decision making? Can the BBC match the journalistic dedication of organisations such as RT or Al Jazeera?

A: There is no chance whatsoever that the BBC would do anything approximating Al Jazeera TV's programme on Israeli infiltration of the Labour Party ( http://tinyurl.com/yad6fslm ). The BBC is institutionally pro-Zionist and institutionally spineless.

Q: You worked in the corporation for 35 years, did you notice a deterioration in the quality of people hired? Was there a change in employees' attitudes and their willingness to express themselves freely and critically?

A: I worked for the BBC's English-language outlets as an editor and senior editor for 35 years. Since the early 1990s there has been growing intolerance of criticism of editorial management decisions, even in internal forums which internal BBC propaganda claims are meant for staff to speak freely. This applies across the board on all matters. But certainly with regard to Israel and Zionism, any questioning of BBC impartiality would attract accusations of anti-Semitism and would certainly spell the end of one's career, no matter how privately and confidentially such criticism is conveyed.


Colin Wright , says: Website July 14, 2019 at 8:30 pm GMT

It wasn't always this way. See the 2002 BBC documentary Dead in the Water , documenting Israel's 1967 attack on the USS Liberty .

It demonstrates conclusively that the attack was deliberate and even goes so far as to speculate that it was a black-flag operation intended to justify a joint US-Israeli invasion of Egypt proper.

Personally, I'm skeptical of that -- although it's possible. I think Israel just wanted to ensure she wasn't forced to withdraw from Sinai as she had been in 1956. After all, in the upshot, we didn't force Israel to withdraw this time -- but she may not have been sure of that outcome. Making it appear the Egyptians had sunk the Liberty would have helped to assure we would be in no mood to demand any such thing of Israel.

Of course, Israel muffed it. She wasn't able to sink the Liberty , and wasn't able to prevent her from sending out a distress signal. Machine-gunning the lifeboats was of no use if the attack had to be aborted before the Liberty could be finished off and the surviving crew members never needed to get into those lifeboats.

dearieme , says: July 14, 2019 at 9:49 pm GMT
There's nothing special about Israel. The BBC has a policy on every contentious subject, domestic or international. A conspicuous current example is Brexit.
Colin Wright , says: Website July 14, 2019 at 10:30 pm GMT
@dearieme 'There's nothing special about Israel. The BBC has a policy on every contentious subject, domestic or international. A conspicuous current example is Brexit.'

Lol. This piece notwithstanding, the BBC used to give Israel a pretty hard time.

Then, at some point about fifteen years ago, it was very noticeably brought to heel and has since toed the Zionist line as closely as it can without visible displays of submissive piddling.

The same applies to the Guardian , by the way. Many of its staff who used to report accurately on the Middle East can now be found on Middle East Eye.

In a way, I find the Zionism of these organs a lot more nauseating than that of, say, the Wall Street Journal or Fox News. At least with the latter, there's a kind of ideological consistency to their Zionism. With the BBC and the Guardian , it's the rankest, most craven hypocrisy imaginable.

petrochnko , says: July 15, 2019 at 7:20 am GMT

It demonstrates conclusively that the attack was deliberate and even goes so far as to speculate that it was a black-flag operation intended to justify a joint US-Israeli invasion of Egypt proper.

The USS Liberty was an ELINT ship. The Israeli's attacked it to prevent the US listening in to Israeli military radio traffic, and keep the US in the dark re Israel's operations.

Sally Snyder , says: July 15, 2019 at 12:08 pm GMT
Here is an article that clearly explains the pro-Israel bias in America's mainstream media:

https://viableopposition.blogspot.com/2019/04/the-pro-israel-skew-in-american.html

This study shows us that the pro-Israel narrative has become so firmly entrenched in the American mainstream media that it is almost impossible for news consumers to discern the truth about the situation in Israel and Palestine. This has greatly benefitted Washington which has made it abundantly clear that it sides with Israel in this fifty year-old conflict.

Beavertales , says: July 15, 2019 at 5:39 pm GMT
The Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) is also under the editorial control of pro-Zionists.

Since the takeover, they have a limited number of revolving topics: holocaust, anti-semitism, slavery, South African Apartheid, Jewish diaspora feel-good stories, Black lives matter, aboriginal suffering, colonialism, Islamophobia/ why-can't-we-accept-women-in-hijabs, the KKK, white racism, reparations for Jewish victims of history, refugees, the need to crush white identity .

You cannot go a week of even a day without a mention of one of the above. News critical of Jews or Israel is not allowed.

Alfred , says: July 16, 2019 at 1:48 pm GMT
Here is from today's Zerohedge

"Combat Ready" Missile Seized During Police Raid On Italian Neo-Nazis

https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2019-07-15/combat-ready-missile-seized-during-police-raid-italian-neo-nazis

The BBC claims that these neo-Nazis were supporters of the Russian-speakers who do not wish to be controlled by the ZioNazis of Kiev.

In reality, the Italian police said the precise opposite. This weaponry was destined to help the ZioNazis of Ukraine. They were to be used against the beleaguered defenders of the Donbass region.

The lies of the BBC are constant. This is an ongoing phenomenon – MH17, Syrian Chemicals, Skripals, Iran's nuclear weapons, Hong Kong's peaceful protesters, concentration camps for Uighurs, Global Warming, Building 7 collapsed 20 minutes after broadcast that it had fallen etc.

Tsigantes , says: July 16, 2019 at 4:44 pm GMT
@Tsigantes I should really qualify:

my forgotten!! point was that this period of MSM upheaval and enormously rising salaries, noticeably from the 1990s onward, coincided with ever increasing pro-Israel coverage and ever decreasing pro-Palestinian coverage. Today it has become virtually an 'anti-semitic' 'racist' 'hate' crime to be sympathetic to Palestinians .accompanied by tearful Zionist bleatings about fearing for their lives, lurid word pictures of nazis walking the streets and claims of massive population flight to Israel – although the numbers of UK jews does not seem to decrease. The perception – which could be wrong but given their total dominance of the media – is quite the opposite!

bbccheese , says: July 16, 2019 at 4:46 pm GMT
@(((They))) Live The Hungarian Foreign Minister should have asked the interviewer "Why does the US do the foot soldier work to protect against the same invasion of muslims into Israel?" While Israel the only country allowed to shoot and kill those even coming close to their border has the right!
Tsigantes , says: July 18, 2019 at 9:50 am GMT
@Parfois1 You raise an interesting point. I remember the outcry over the Beeb reporting on the Falklands that the Beeb was left wing and treasonous. The BBC was giving massive air time to Labour MPs and talking heads saying that the Falklands should be abandoned, handed to the Argentinians.

My left wing father (ex-WW2 RN submarine officer) surprised me by pointing out that whatever the rights or wrongs of UK 'owning' the Falklands the fact was that they did and therefore in the circumstance of armed invasion the UK was obliged to defend it on the principle of national sovereignty. Not to mention discouraging other such invasions.

I bring this up because exactly these issues have re-appeared today.

That is, the old left-wingism of BBC reportage has morphed into the new left-wingism of today: i.e. LGBT+, racism, anti-semitism, indoctrinating homosexuality & trans issues into infants in state schools etc. Pro-EU, pro-open borders, pro-migrant, pro-Israel, pro-war. Anti-Brexit, anti-sovereignty, anti-patriotism, anti-nationalism, anti-religion, anti traditional family all of which the Beeb loudly deems 'fascist' [deplorable] across all its channels.

Agent76 , says: July 19, 2019 at 1:39 pm GMT
MAY 23, 2019 Life Or Death – Corporate Media Or Honest Media?

Relying on the corporate media, including BBC News, to provide a reliable account of the world is literally a matter of life or death, on many levels.

http://www.medialens.org/index.php/alerts/alert-archive/2019/904-life-or-death-corporate-media-or-honest-media.html

"Who controls the issuance of money controls the government!" Nathan Meyer Rothschild

June 13, 2016 Which Corporations Control The World?

A surprisingly small number of corporations control massive global market shares. How many of the brands below do you use?

http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article44864.htm

"Control the oil, and you control nations. Control the food, and you control the people." Henry Kissenger

[Jul 18, 2019] People hate it . Neoliberalism's sale of state assets, offshored jobs, stripped services, poorly-invested infrastructure and armies of the forcibly unemployed have delivered, not promised efficiency and flexibility to communities, but discomfort and misery by Van Badham

Notable quotes:
"... People hate it . Neoliberalism's sale of state assets, offshored jobs, stripped services, poorly-invested infrastructure and armies of the forcibly unemployed have delivered, not promised "efficiency" and "flexibility" to communities, but discomfort and misery. The wealth of a few has now swelled to a level of conspicuousness that must politely be considered vulgar yet the philosophy's entrenched itself so deeply in how governments make decisions and allocate resources that one of its megaphones once declared its triumph "the end of history". ..."
Dec 25, 2018 | www.theguardian.com

For 40 years, the ideology popularly known as "neoliberalism" has dominated political decision-making in the English-speaking west.

People hate it . Neoliberalism's sale of state assets, offshored jobs, stripped services, poorly-invested infrastructure and armies of the forcibly unemployed have delivered, not promised "efficiency" and "flexibility" to communities, but discomfort and misery. The wealth of a few has now swelled to a level of conspicuousness that must politely be considered vulgar yet the philosophy's entrenched itself so deeply in how governments make decisions and allocate resources that one of its megaphones once declared its triumph "the end of history".

It wasn't, as even he admitted later . And given some of the events of the contemporary political moment, it's possible to conclude from auguries like smoke rising from a garbage fire and patterns of political blood upon the floor that history may be hastening neoliberalism towards an end that its advocates did not forecast.

Three years ago, I remarked that comedian Russell Brand may have stumbled onto a stirring spirit of the times when his "capitalism sucks" contemplations drew stadium-sized crowds. Beyond Brand – politically and materially – the crowds have only been growing.

Is the political zeitgeist an old spectre up for some new haunting? Or are the times more like a strong angel proclaiming with a loud voice, "the combination of inequality and low wage growth is fuelling discontent. Time to sing a new song."

In days gone past, they used to slice open an animal's belly and study the shape of its spilled entrails to find out. But we could just keep an eye on the news.

Here are my seven signs of the neoliberal apocalypse:

... ... ...

5. The reds are back under the beds

... ... ...

6. Tony Abbott becomes a fan of nationalising assets

... How else to explain the earthquake-like paradigm shift represented by the sixth sign? Since when do neoliberal conservatives argue for the renationalisation of infrastructure, as is the push of Tony Abbott's gang to nationalise the coal-fired Liddell power station?

It may be a cynical stunt to take an unscientific stand against climate action, but seizing the means of production remains seizing the means of production, um, comrade.

"You know, nationalising assets is what the Liberal party was founded to stop governments doing," said Turnbull, even as he hid in the dens and in the rocks of the mountains to weather – strange coincidence – yet another Newspoll loss.

... ... ...

• Van Badham is a Guardian Australia columnist

[Jul 17, 2019] It is neoliberalism since the late 70s that led to the trebling of personal debts on stagnant wages, and finally the collapse of the banks

Notable quotes:
"... The biggest economic problem is "corporate welfare" find out how much subsidy the UK government 'gives' to profitable corporations, the ordinary taxpayers loss. ..."
Dec 17, 2018 | profile.theguardian.com

msTOmsTO -> AsDusty 23 Aug 2016 00:43

Marx, Engels and Gramsci all died before the second world war began. I doubt they had much to say about what caused it.

Regarding the posited failure of "neoliberalism", if you want to know what real failure of a political and economic system looks like, have a look at the consequences of Marxism for every country where it held sway in the 20th century.

A recession followed by a few years of sluggish growth is hardly catastrophic

ShaunNewman -> Ohcolowisc , 23 Aug 2016 00:25
Democratic socialism must take the place of this capitalist system where 50% of the global economy is owned by just 1% of the population, patently unfair for billions of people. To have 1% having more than they could possibly spend in a lifetime is ludicrous while we have others starving and millions of "people" living below the poverty line.
ShaunNewman -> RobertKlahn , 23 Aug 2016 00:21
RobertKlahn

The capitalist (USA) system diverts huge amounts of money via corporations 50% of the global economy to just 1% of the global population, which is patently unfair. The 1% ownership grows every day because these 1% people have a mental illness called insatiable greed, where enough is never enough. Yes 'fair trade' would help, but what must be broken is the compliance of conservative governments around the world who fail to tax these corporations a 'fair share' of taxation to help "the people" to raise their living standards. We must adopt democratic socialism with million of USA citizens voted for with Bernie Sanders, and as is practiced in the Nordic countries, who tax corporations fairly and obtain a good standard of living for "their people."

Matthew Kilburn , 23 Aug 2016 00:03
What comes next? Hopefully some kind of neo-nationalistic Westernism in which the societies that, up until the turmoil of the 60s and 70s shaped the course of global affairs, rediscover their roots and identifies.

If "neoliberalism" seems to be in retreat, perhaps the simplest explanation is that the cultures that gave rise to it - western, Christian, often English-speaking cultures - most certainly ARE in retreat.

How can we answer questions like "what is happening to us?" or "How should we react?" When we can't even identify the "us" or the "we"?

ShaunNewman -> martinusher , 22 Aug 2016 23:58
We need government that will restrain capitalism and use the system for the benefit of "the people" not the corporations. Which in practice means "don't vote conservative."
ShaunNewman -> martinusher , 22 Aug 2016 23:56
martinusher

Yes, the point is that unrestrained capitalism does wreck lives, but continues to feed the 1% with mare more than they could ever spend. This is precisely why we need a system of democratic socialism as practiced on the Nordic countries, where "the people" come first and the corporations run a distant second.

However if the UK continues to elect conservative governments the reverse will always be the case, with "the people" running a distant second.

ShaunNewman -> Roger Elliott , 22 Aug 2016 23:47
Globalization, capitalist society in the 70s quickly became ownership of 50% (and continuing to grow) of the global economy by just 1% of the population. We need to change to democratic socialism as practiced by the Nordic countries.
ShaunNewman -> CopBase , 22 Aug 2016 23:43
The biggest economic problem is "corporate welfare" find out how much subsidy the UK government 'gives' to profitable corporations, the ordinary taxpayers loss.
ShaunNewman -> tamborineman , 22 Aug 2016 23:31
How we got here was via the capitalist system whereby 50% of the global economy is now owned bt just 1% of the global population. A collection of individuals who are filthy rich but who also have the mental illness of insatiable greed, and who won't be satisfied until they own 60% and so on. They avoid paying tax, and conservative governments help them by providing loop holes in taxation legislation so their corporations can avoid paying tax or pay up to 5% of their huge incomes in a token gesture. In Australia out of 1,500 corporations surveyed 579 have not paid a cent since at least 2013. The Australian people should be marching in the streets for a 'fair go' but the apathy prevents that. They probably won't get angry until such time as they realize that the 1% own 70% of the global economy and they are being squeezed even harder into 14 hour days without a break, only then will they crack, if at all.
ciaofornow -> Citizen0 , 22 Aug 2016 22:58
Quantitative easing first upped the stock market and therefore the retirement portfolios of the US middle class as well as the portfolios of the wealthy, and now the US economy is finally producing middle class jobs (recent report, NY Times) and not just the upper middle class.
------------------
Rubbish!
QE is just the creation of trillions more in debt. Artificially raising asset prices is not a free market. A free market depends on people being able to pay the prices. But today in the UK, people require three loans to buy a house the price of which has been artificially raised by QE. That enriches the homeowner, the bank, and estate agent. but in equal measure, it impoverishes the house buyer.

the blowing up of asset prices will have to go on forever (still, not one penny of QE has been repaid), or the system will collapse. But that is impossible. It will destroy the value of money. See what happens to stock prices each time the US "threatens" to raise interest rates and stop QE programmes. And just check out personal debt levels in the UK and US. It is unsustainable.

The basic problem of neoliberalism is that it demands low pay as a competitive measure. But that means people have less money to spend in the consumer economy. So neoliberalism requires deregulated banking, pushing up asset prices, so people feel wealthy and take on more debt with which to compensate their low pay, and so they can shop. But that in turn leads to higher debts until the debts are not likely to be repaid. Banks collapse.

The bailouts and money printing has raised asset prices as you say. So now they are at record highs. And if the system demands they go higher while keeping down pay. Who the Fuck is going to pay?

The system is designed to collapse. It only exists today thanks to the creation of money that does not really exist. We may as well adopt grass as money as keep this system going.
The flipside of artificial growth in asset prices is the falling value of earnings.

in 1996, UK average pay equalled 30-35% of a typical house. Today, it is only 10% of a house, and in London, 7%. And for the system to function, that percentage must fall.

AsDusty -> msTOmsTO , 22 Aug 2016 22:41
No, quite a lot of people have been writing about it. Marx, Engels and Gramski all discussed the tendency of free market economics to lead to conflict. More recently you could look at the work of Galbraith, Sachs and Frank Stilwell, just off the top of my head.
ciaofornow -> MurrayGSmith , 22 Aug 2016 22:35
You failed to understand the article. It says the post war period (1945-70s) was the longest and most successful economic run, especially for working classes, in history.

It is "neoliberalism" since the late 70s that led to the trebling of personal debts on stagnant wages, and finally the collapse of the banks. And ever since the whole economic show has only been kept alive with life-saving drugs (QE which is basically pretending there is a cash flow rather than reality of a solvency crisis, govt set zero interest rates, bailouts). But we have merely got stagnation.

And your last point is a straw man. Hardly anyone wants to replace this failing system with Stalinism.

We have had two contrasting economic systems in the West since the War. The one had far more regulation, and stronger wage growth for workers, the latter since 1979 has been neoliberalism.

The first collapsed in the stagnation of the 70s. The latter died in 2008, and has been kept going through state support and printing trillions more in debt. But the bailouts are failing. They are failing because it was never a cash flow crisis. It was a solvency crisis. Now the debts are even greater.

tamborineman , 22 Aug 2016 22:34
Selective description posing as analysis and allowing the emotional triggers of a couple of key phrases to justify the selectiveness. It sounds magisterial but it ain't and, as others have pointed out, it gives us little on where do we go from here. This is precisely because he has really not told us what he thinks here is, how we got here, and why we got here.
Ohcolowisc -> RobertKlahn , 22 Aug 2016 22:25
The last thing a capitalist corporation wants is to compete (i.e. having actual competition). What they want is monopoly. That's why they "rig" the markets - among others by merging with and acquiring their competitors until they reach near monopoly in their industry (or industries).

That's the essence of the statement that "there never have been free markets, only rigged markets". And there never will be. "Free markets" are transient phenomena that exist only for relatively short time periods during which the leading players do the rigging. The only factor that could keep free markets "free" is government - and that's why it is hated so much by corporations and is rendered practically toothless in the US. It limits their ability to rig and to loot.

The only form the phrase "free markets" exist for prolonged periods of time is when it is used as a propaganda slogan by neoliberal ideologues (even though it is the exact opposite of what really happens).

ciaofornow , 22 Aug 2016 22:20
And why has it taken so long for such an article to be published? Many of the points in this article should have been apparent to intelligent commentators right after the 2008 crisis.

Why has it taken so long for political fallout?

The major reason is cited: Parties such as New Labour, supposedly of the Left that continued to support this failing system. Gordon Brown bailed out the banks, claimed to save the world, and then let it all go on as before. A Disgrace of a leader that history will condemn as a fool. And how many commentators of the time lauded him for it? Far too many. And many of them still in the jobs. Jesus Wept!

What the writer understands and too many are in denial about is this. New Labour is dead. It died in 2007-8 with the collapse of the banks.

Then the amazing coincidence that the third party (the Lib Dems) was taken over by the neoliberals just before the Financial Crisis brought the neoliberal age to an end, and which went onto support the True Neoliberal party (the Tories). In the US, a man who ran on a candidacy of Change only for the world to find out it was bluster and rhetoric! Obama will not go down as a Great President at all. He tried to bail out a failing system. He will be a footnote in history.

Then those bloody bailouts. They not only bailed out the bankers and the rich. They bailed out millions of largely older voters, artificially pumping up house prices. The old vote. And they voted to back this grand theft against Reason, and the younger generations. The result of the bailouts will be a far greater Financial Crisis than 2008. The disconnect between people's debts and wages is worse today than in 2006. That can mean only one thing. Collapse is coming. And now the debts are even bigger. Bailouts are wrong, have failed, and will not be politically acceptable again.

Conservative parties will be repositories for those afraid of change, and those happy to be bailed out until the crisis explodes again. On the change side, if we do not have Left Populism, we will get nationalism.

AsDusty -> candeesays , 22 Aug 2016 22:16
In terms of stronger border controls there is no doubt this is happening. The US, Europe and here in Australia the governments grip on border entries has only got tighter. As for international labour migration, Trump, Brexit and the European refugee crisis will see increasing pressure on lowering the numbers of migrant workers.
Increasing labour migration has been a ploy by government to try and make globalisation work, as globalisation requires the free flow of labour across international borders. The political pressure to reduce migrant numbers will be too much to resist, and greater controls will be put in place.
CivilityPlease -> MurrayGSmith , 22 Aug 2016 22:07
This is not a choice between A or B. Stop fighting yesterday's battles. Its over, just as the article declares. What is developing as we speak will steer tomorrow's civilization and it will be neither of the old paradigms. We have to come to a consensus about where we want to go. What principles do we have faith in to inform our assessments of what we keep or alter? What roles will we play? What will our purpose(s) be? That is the business we need to be about to arrive at an orderly, deliberate future, prepared for a long journey to a better world. Or we push and pull in all different directions and go round and round the same old ground making the same old mistakes until the world moves on and leaves us behind. We will need to work together or fail each alone. Are you ready?
candeesays -> MurrayGSmith , 22 Aug 2016 22:02
It is theory without politics or economics.

The period from GATT was predicated on strong welfare states and national industries trading. Not privatising societies and globalising capital.

[Jul 06, 2019] Neoliberal democrats for profit love of minorities

Nov 10, 2016 | discussion.theguardian.com

JamesWonnacott , 10 Nov 2016 11:18

"And of course, they answer it by bashing immigrants and people of colour, vilifying Muslims, and degrading women."

Muslims, of course, never degrade women do they?

[Jul 06, 2019] It was the Democrats' embrace of neoliberalism that won it for Trump by Naomi Klein

Both the article and discussion is more then two year old, but sounds like were writfen yestarday. Nothing changed... Trump betraed his voters and neoliberalism continue its march in bloodthirsty zombie state it acquired after 2008 financial crisis.
Notable quotes:
"... People have lost their sense of security, status and even identity. This result is the scream of an America desperate for radical change. ..."
"... Here is what we need to understand: a hell of a lot of people are in pain. Under neoliberal policies of deregulation, privatisation, austerity and corporate trade, their living standards have declined precipitously. They have lost jobs. They have lost pensions. They have lost much of the safety net that used to make these losses less frightening. They see a future for their kids even worse than their precarious present. ..."
"... Never has there been a transfer of wealth from so many to so few and it isn't just happening in the USA. People have rightly had enough - but you are right, voting for Trump is hardly the way to fix it. ..."
"... The problem with centre left parties throughout the western world is that they sold out to corporate capitalism, which forced people who rejected neoliberalism to go to the extremes to protest. The question is, once someone's loyalty has been broken, it is that much more difficult to win loyalty back, if it is possible at all. ..."
"... And you're right - the neoliberal capture of centre-left legacy parties from the Democrats to the German SPD and French Socialist Party has created an exceptionally unpromising landscape and public mood. Trust has been broken. Responsibilities betrayed. Intellectual traditions traduced, distorted, or simply cast aside. ..."
"... Everybody's an expert after the event, aren't they? OK, noble sentiments but "let's set aside whatever is keeping us apart"? ..."
"... The idea of the 'American dream' seems to have morphed into a nasty belief that if you're poor it's your own fault. You didn't 'want it enough'. You must be secretly lazy and undeserving, even if you're actually working three jobs to survive, or even if there are no jobs. ..."
"... It always seems very odd to me that so many people who think like that profess to be Christian. 'Poverty equals moral failure' is the complete opposite of what Jesus Christ got into so much trouble for saying. ..."
Nov 09, 2016 | -> www.theguardian.com

People have lost their sense of security, status and even identity. This result is the scream of an America desperate for radical change.

'Elite neoliberalism unleashed the Davos class. People such as Hillary and Bill Clinton are the toast of the Davos party. In truth, they threw the party.

They will blame -> James Comey and the FBI. They will blame -> voter suppression and racism. They will blame -> Bernie or bust and misogyny. They will blame third parties and independent candidates. They will blame the corporate media for giving him the platform, social media for being a bullhorn, and WikiLeaks for airing the laundry.

But this leaves out the force most responsible for creating the nightmare in which we now find ourselves wide awake: neoliberalism. That worldview – fully embodied by -> Hillary Clinton and her machine – is no match for Trump-style extremism. The decision to run one against the other is what sealed our fate. If we learn nothing else, can we please learn from that mistake?

Here is what we need to understand: a hell of a lot of people are in pain. Under neoliberal policies of deregulation, privatisation, austerity and corporate trade, their living standards have declined precipitously. They have lost jobs. They have lost pensions. They have lost much of the safety net that used to make these losses less frightening. They see a future for their kids even worse than their precarious present.

At the same time, they have witnessed the rise of the Davos class, a hyper-connected network of banking and tech billionaires, elected leaders who are awfully cosy with those interests, and Hollywood celebrities who make the whole thing seem unbearably glamorous. Success is a party to which they were not invited, and they know in their hearts that this rising wealth and power is somehow directly connected to their growing debts and powerlessness.

For the people who saw security and status as their birthright – and that means white men most of all – these losses are unbearable.

-> Donald Trump speaks directly to that pain. The Brexit campaign spoke to that pain. So do all of the rising far-right parties in Europe. They answer it with nostalgic nationalism and anger at remote economic bureaucracies – whether Washington, the North American free trade agreement the World Trade Organisation or the EU. And of course, they answer it by bashing immigrants and people of colour, vilifying Muslims, and degrading women. Elite neoliberalism has nothing to offer that pain, because neoliberalism unleashed the Davos class. People such as Hillary and Bill Clinton are the toast of the Davos party. In truth, they threw the party.

Trump's message was: "All is hell." Clinton answered: "All is well." But it's not well – far from it.

Neo-fascist responses to rampant insecurity and inequality are not going to go away. But what we know from the 1930s is that what it takes to do battle with fascism is a real left. A good chunk of Trump's support could be peeled away if there were a genuine redistributive agenda on the table. An agenda to take on the billionaire class with more than rhetoric, and use the money for a green new deal. Such a plan could create a tidal wave of well-paying unionised jobs, bring badly needed resources and opportunities to communities of colour, and insist that polluters should pay for workers to be retrained and fully included in this future.

It could fashion policies that fight institutionalised racism, economic inequality and climate change at the same time. It could take on bad trade deals and police violence, and honour indigenous people as the original protectors of the land, water and air.

People have a right to be angry, and a powerful, intersectional left agenda can direct that anger where it belongs, while fighting for holistic solutions that will bring a frayed society together.

Such a coalition is possible. In Canada, we have begun to cobble it together under the banner of a people's agenda called The Leap Manifesto , endorsed by more than 220 organisations from Greenpeace Canada to Black Lives Matter Toronto, and some of our largest trade unions.

Bernie Sanders' amazing campaign went a long way towards building this sort of coalition, and demonstrated that the appetite for democratic socialism is out there.

... ... ...


Briar , 10 Nov 2016 09:22

So, the very people harmed by neoliberalism have elected someone already a member of the Davos class, whose rise will harm them even more. Another own goal for democracy.

josephinireland -> Briar 72 73

Never has there been a transfer of wealth from so many to so few and it isn't just happening in the USA. People have rightly had enough - but you are right, voting for Trump is hardly the way to fix it.

greenwichite -> Briar 33 34

I have a feeling the Davos class sneer at Donald Trump. He's just a builder, really, whereas in Davos they like financiers and tech billionaires.

SlumVictim , 10 Nov 2016 09:23

The problem with centre left parties throughout the western world is that they sold out to corporate capitalism, which forced people who rejected neoliberalism to go to the extremes to protest. The question is, once someone's loyalty has been broken, it is that much more difficult to win loyalty back, if it is possible at all.

tempestteacup -> SlumVictim 44 45

Good, concise post.

And you're right - the neoliberal capture of centre-left legacy parties from the Democrats to the German SPD and French Socialist Party has created an exceptionally unpromising landscape and public mood. Trust has been broken. Responsibilities betrayed. Intellectual traditions traduced, distorted, or simply cast aside.

In moments of humiliation or defeat - and make no mistake, this was both - there needs to be reflection and a willingness to return to first principles as well as evolving new strategies and insights appropriate to the present.

Economic realities shape cultural and social relations. The left should always listen to the experiences of people and build a consensus based on solidarity between groups and not the alienated support of different self-interested demographics. Exploitation is the corner-stone of capitalism when it is left to run unchecked. Without regulation, capitalism tends towards monopolies that end up subverting democracy itself.

These are the issues Bernie Sanders raised and the enthusiasm with which it was greeted is testimony to the fact that there are white working class voters hungry for a politics of positive, radical social change. Intoning with robotic piety that the people have never had it so good despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary is a form of deceit; when it comes from the mouths of corporate Democrats, it is political obscenity.

zephirine -> tempestteacup

In moments of humiliation or defeat - and make no mistake, this was both - there needs to be reflection and a willingness to return to first principles

I think what I've realised from the Brexit and Trump results is how desperate people are for something to believe in. What used to be called 'the vision thing'.

For decades we've had to choose between different forms of managerialism and variations on a theme of 'there is no alternative to rule by the market'. We just had to put up and shut up, there was nothing to get excited about. Nobody's ever jumped up and down shouting "What do want? Trickle-down economics! When do we want it? Now!"

The thing about demagogues is they offer that emotional release. What we need is principled political movements that also enable it.

tempestteacup -> zephirine

Absolutely right. One of the by-products of There Is No Alternative, though, is that managerialism and wonkiness have been fetishised. Hillary Clinton's devastatingly uninspiring offer to the American people was hailed by some as a mark of her "maturity", "experience", and "competence". Bernie Sanders, by contrast, was attacked for firing people up, for inspiring them to believe change was possible - by implication, of course, such attacks rest on the belief that change is in fact not possible at all. It is a bleak nihilism that states the best that can be hoped or organised for is a slightly better management of existing structures.

There is a hypocrisy, too, when someone like Clinton derides Trump's economic plans as "Trumped-up trickle-down". In reality, they were arguing simply over who would offer the *bigger* tax cuts. The notion that there were alternative visions on the economy, on climate change, on racial equality or healthcare and education, not to mention foreign policies, was almost completely absent.

This is why I wrote that in some ways Hillary Clinton was the greater evil in this election. It is one thing to hark backwards to a mythical past, as Donald Trump did. It is quite another to put such tight constraints on the entire notion of what is possible in the future. Trump offered nostalgia. Clinton offered the tyranny of low expectations - forever.

But that is all in the past now - for the future, I agree with you that there needs to be a willingness to offer radical, inspirational and visionary alternatives to a system that has simply not worked for the majority of people who through no fault of their own find their quality of life, possibilities and security in decline while wealth flows ceaselessly upwards and into the pockets of those already insulated from the harm their favoured politicians unleash.

Bernie showed what can be done - he also showed that people are willing to finance such campaigns and thus liberate the political process from the death-grip of corporate donations. Personally, I am sceptical of whether the Democratic Party is an appropriate vehicle for such politics (I know that Bernie doesn't agree with me!) Regardless, his campaign should provide somewhat of a model for what can be done - and likewise his statement from today. Amidst the headlong rush - in this paper as well - to denigrate and smear voters for failing to advance bourgeois liberal interests, it is imperative that deprived, working class voters of all races are listened to properly and not labelled racists and bigots. A few no doubt are. But these are, in many instances, the same people that helped elect Barack Obama in 2008 and 2012. They are crying out for something to organise around. Hillary Clinton failed because she was not and never has been a person capable of, even interested in, offering that.

FrankyJane , 10 Nov 2016 09:26

This article is brilliant. Truth in spades.

One tiny quibble.

You write: "there was a failure in the campaign to connect with older black and Latino voters who are the demographic most abused by our current economic model."

A major reason the Sanders campaign didn't connect in time was the DNC's suppression of the debate schedule. A corrupt but wildly successful tactic that saw Clinton sweep the southern states.

DaveLester -> FrankyJane

This article is brilliant. Truth in spades.

Naomi, has omitted one very important detail: automation, i.e. the use of AI to replace jobs.

This absolutely requires us to restructure society to provide security and purpose to each every one of us who is not part of the super rich owners.

For example we will see driving jobs rapidly disappearing within the next five to ten years.

I also notice that where the worst effects of rampant capitalism are ameliorated there appear to be fewer issues. I'm thinking of many Western European nations where the issues do not yet seem to have the over fifty percent traction that they have in the US and the UK. If Australia were suffering a similar economic slow down it may well join the US and UK. But what's happening in Canada and New Zealand?

Andymcneilis -> FrankyJane

I don't think it is. It is the same old hate hate hate blame the white man stuff.

If you want to know why you lost and will keep losing look in the mirror -as a tribe the left - despises anything different to your view of the world - ironic

yellowshark -> DaveLester 25 26

I also notice that where the worst effects of rampant capitalism are ameliorated there appear to be fewer issues. I'm thinking of many Western European nations where the issues do not yet seem to have the over fifty percent traction that they have in the US and the UK.

Over the last few months I've been writing in here about the main difference between (some of?) those Western European nations and the UK and US. One big difference is we (I'm from the UK but applies also to US) use the First Past The Post voting system. This enforces a two party system (Duverger's Law) which tends to crowd out minority voices - can you imagine a conservative/green alliance in government in UK/US as happened not too long ago in Germany.

Much of what ails the UK and the US is not evident in the North Western Eu nations: less inequality, greater wealth (in the UK, not US - GDP per capita: from worldbank data), better healthcare outcomes, better education outcomes, greater worker productivity. The move to neoliberalism under Thatcher/Reagan and the resultant move to market economics and reduction in nationalised industries (Larry Elliot recently wrote an article on here describing the issue https://www.theguardian.com/business/2016/nov/06/the-legacy-of-leaving-old-industrial-britain-to-rot-is-becoming-clear ) and the Left didn't have a reply: workers lost their jobs and their traditional political parties couldn't help. A move to the centre and the rise of third way politics of Clinton/Blair was the only way that the Democrats and (New) Labour could get into power: did they do anything to help the left-behind? The Global Financial Crisis and resultant austerity, coupled with rising rates of immigration and the inability of those people to have their voices heard with FPTP led to Trump/Brexit and the rise of popular nationalism/socialism.

parmantom , 10 Nov 2016 09:27

This is a useful and pertinent plea. However the article failed to include the automation of work as a massive driver of joblessness.

We humans get excited by success, but if large swathes of Society cannot embrace change and adaptation as a determinant of ambition, then technology advance and neoliberal economics will ruin them.

Iterative workplace skills are perhaps the biggest investment a Society should make. The alternative is governments paying chunks of Society in place of work. Society will generate new jobs, but unless those replace by Technology at work adapt, great pain will come. For sure you cant easily blame Technology, its easier to blame migrants...

BillyBalfour -> Klamberra 0 1

I only some one had seen it coming. Read The Mighty Micro, Christopher Evans. 1979

stuffandnonsense -> parmantom 8 9

Manufacturing has moved to China and Mexico. Jobs have been off-shored to India and the Philippines. What is left behind? Take a look at Detroit. Automation hasn't had that much impact - it's cheaper to (under)pay a bunch of people in developing countries than automate solutions.

dunwich , 10 Nov 2016 09:32

Yes, there are some real insights here and the beginnings of a response, which has been pretty much absent elsewhere.

A pity that, although comments have finally been opened, the piece is somewhat buried well down the page, and that Hadley Freeman's vastly inferior piece which bangs on about misogyny (as at least 3 pieces did yesterday) is being promoted.

Trump is snarling bully with what look like very unattractive attitudes towards women. But as, Klein also pointed out on R4 this morning, the most important thing about this election is not that Clinton failed to break the glass ceiling.

Full marks.

Herschy -> dunwich

Freeman is also right, most of Trump's voters don't match the description of them as down on their luck working class people, most are just upper middle class people with backward views and a decent paycheck.

Paul Baker , 10 Nov 2016 09:34

Really? You respond to the crushing defeat of Liberal pseudo intellectualism with even more Liberal pseudo intellectualism? And you can't understand why it's all going wrong for you?

Herve Boisde -> Paul Baker

When the popular vote goes to Conservatives then I might agree with you. Trump is hardly a symbol of a crushing mandate.

Lazio99 , 10 Nov 2016 09:37

Everybody's an expert after the event, aren't they? OK, noble sentiments but "let's set aside whatever is keeping us apart"?

What is keeping people apart is that the elitism of the political classes and their hangers on, certainly in the UK. They are absolutists; they have no concern over what ordinary people think. If anyone at all thinks differently from them then they are wrong, end of.

They don't see any need to back their opinion up, to debate the point. Anyone who thinks differently from them is just plain wrong. This is usually backed up with sneers and insults. Racist, xenophobe, stupid, misogynist.

These people can't change. their sense of infallibilty and superiority is unchallengeable.

What is keeping them apart is themselves; to change would be to surrender their sense of superiority and entitlement. They can't do it.

josephinireland -> Lazio99

Yes, it is quite noticeable how those who disagree become a 'target' (in more ways than one I suspect).

Expatrician -> Lazio99 24 25

Ms Klein was wise long, long before this event. You should read the Shock Doctrine. It makes everything much easier to follow and predict.

Lazio99 -> Expatrician 4 5

OK, fair point.

I should have made it plain that absolutism isn't confined to the political classes. It's amazing how many people collapse into incoherent rage when they are disagreed with; and a lack of toleration of the views of others tends to make the "others" themselves be less tolerant. It's a vice that spreads.

Brouillard , 10 Nov 2016 09:39

Of all the articles in the Guardian, this is the only one that gets close to defining the cause of Trump's win. What we have is effectively the educated rebelling against the educated and who can blame them. Our financial system is rigged towards the better educated who are disproportionately contributed for their efforts at a cost to the less well educated. Is it any wonder that they vote for change? I don't think Trump is the answer any more than Brexit is in this country. But blaming Trump's win on wholesale misogyny and racism is sneering prejudice that could be every bit as damaging as Trump's racism and sexism

Our educated politicians need to work out how to make capitalism work for the middle, support the bottom and not over reward the top. It is doing the opposite currently

DawnBreaks , 10 Nov 2016 09:40

Everyone who voted Trump is neo-fascist? ... still think the left is missing the point. All around the world people are being lifted out of poverty by globalised industry; jobs and hence wealth are being redistributed more evenly around the world. I thought the left were in favour of wealth redistribution.

Barbara Watson -> DawnBreaks 8 9

The elephant in the room was hardly mentioned if at all. The Israelis love him, the American Jews were split but, guess what, he was endorsed by KKK and David Duke! What the hell is going on?....

BillInTheStyx , 10 Nov 2016 09:42

The problem with a coalition of progressives, is that "the left" in general don't believe in limits on growth or even climate change.

Look at the Richmond by-election, where labour MPs want to turn the spotlight from the issue of airport expansion, to Zac Goldsmith's support for Brexit.

Look at union support for continued use of coal, feeding into the labour party's own ambivalence. Or the frankly bizarre support for building trident submarines, to keep the jobs, but not actually using them.

If you want a coalition that does something about climate change - and all the other ecological ills of the earth - you will have to reach out to small c- and even large C- conservatives - the likes of Boris's father Stanley Johnson and Zac Goldsmith (mayoral campaign notwithstanding) - and dare I say it, cut out some of the social progressives, whose ecological credentials are not so progressive. That really would change everything.

DefinitionOfMadness -> BillInTheStyx

Look at union support for continued use of coal, feeding into the labour party's own ambivalence.

You do know that Tony Blair closed more pits than Margaret Thatcher don't you?

Henryb63 , 10 Nov 2016 09:43

The first thing to do is to stop vilifying the white man, most are hard working and keep economies going, stop calling them names and blaming for everything bad that has happened since the Roman Empire and before.

Flix -> Henryb63

Absolutely. We need compromise not division.

Chris Bentley -> Henryb63 45 46

Amen to that. Its just racism/sexism of another kind. As a good husband and father, hard-working professional, law abiding citizen, good neighbour etc I am made to feel guilty for being a white man. Shouldn't all individuals be judged on their merits???

Andymcneilis -> Chris Bentley 6 7

Spot on - does the white worker not have rights ?

Martin Cohen , 10 Nov 2016 09:44

What is puzzling is that based on your premise these vast swathes of disenfranchised voters surely sided with the enemy as represented by an elitist, sneering billionaire. What he has now created though is a massive crisis of expectation. The anti Trump protests seen in the last 24 hours may in time be replaced by those whose aspirations he has ignited but remain unfulfilled. Clinton winning the popular vote may be a moral victory of some kind but here in the UK we are used to having to accept a government often voted for by barely a third of the electorate. Other commentators have said things like 'it's the end of democracy as we know it'. How so, when electing Trump is the clearest demonstration of democracy in action there is, whether you like the result or not. The parallels with Brexit are startling. France next?

EnduraKlaar -> Martin Cohen 11 12

No, what really really pisses people off is when the winners of the election (and numpties in the media) talk of a "clear mandate" and "the people voted for this". In the US as in the UK it's nothing of the kind (Democrats won more votes for christ sake, and you call it "clear democracy") and this reality-corrupting idea of "clear mandate" causes real trouble.

stevevarcoe , 10 Nov 2016 09:44

I'm sick of seeing the word elite used by angry people in these forums. Used to describe the powerful, mostly faceless people who they believe oppress them. They read newspapers owned by tax dodging aristocrats and pornographers and then they go out and vote for multi millionaire who inherited every cent and a chinless public school prick with an EU pension.

Klamberra -> stevevarcoe

Agreed - elite has become the word for anyone who has more (earned, inherited, studied, courage) than the writer of the word. It's a vile word.

ParisHiltonCommune -> Klamberra 13 14

True. Perhaps the word should be replaced by "plutocracy", but the media don't like to use that word as it pinpoints the causes of most our problems far more accurately than "elite".

Guess11 , 10 Nov 2016 09:45

A bit simplistic. The Davos class is a very small number of people. Their votes couldn't elect a pope in a vatican on their own.

No, the real turning point is that those losing out and seeing no chance of that changing now outnumber those who are dragged along by the elites, on an upward if gentle trajectory, with belief that they can 'make it'. Much more subtle.

And the Elephant is the unwillingness to accept that long term there is no fundamental reason for a historically rich nation to maintain relative prosperity compared to historically poorer ones. Parity is inevitable in the long term - one man is as valuable as any other.

usasandy -> Guess11 4 5

It's not the votes of the Davos class, it's their power in the world to control the votes of everyone else.

josephinireland , 10 Nov 2016 09:51

The 'American dream' is dead in the water for the vast majority these days.

zephirine -> josephinireland 9 10

The idea of the 'American dream' seems to have morphed into a nasty belief that if you're poor it's your own fault. You didn't 'want it enough'. You must be secretly lazy and undeserving, even if you're actually working three jobs to survive, or even if there are no jobs.

This view has taken hold in the UK too, where the tabloids peddle the view that anyone who claims state benefits must be a fraud. But at least, people here and in mainland Europe have the direct experience of war within living memory and we understand that you can lose everything through no fault of your own. In the US, even when there's a natural disaster like Katrina it seems to be the poor people's fault for not having their own transport and money to go and stay somewhere else.

It always seems very odd to me that so many people who think like that profess to be Christian. 'Poverty equals moral failure' is the complete opposite of what Jesus Christ got into so much trouble for saying.

josephinireland -> zephirine 2 3

Amen to that. I couldn't agree with you more. ,

Amen to that. I couldn't agree with you more.

Flix , 10 Nov 2016 09:51

Superb article. A voice of reason in the sea of hysteria from the other Guardian commentators who don't seem to be learning anything from this.

What I think the left needs on a political level is to dispense with identity politics (which only divides people who should be on the same level in terms of economic status and relative need) and have a coming together moment, wherein we effectively set out that woman, man, black, white, homosexual, heterosexual, etc who are living at the bottom end of society all come together behind a unified political purpose - one that doesn't seek to demonise others within its ranks. Because let's be honest - the racism that brought Trump to power is at least partially a response to the intolerant, bigoted views of 'progressives' on the 'left'. Look at Hadley Freeman's article today as an example. These people divide us, and make the job harder.

The left needs to embrace rational egalitarianism, not agenda driven crusades. They aren't working, they're complicit in delivering hell.

Grotesque -> Flix

What I think the left needs on a political level is to dispense with identity politics (which only divides people who should be on the same level in terms of economic status and relative need) and have a coming together moment, wherein we effectively set out that woman, man, black, white, homosexual, heterosexual, etc who are living at the bottom end of society all come together behind a unified political purpose - one that doesn't seek to demonise others within its ranks.

But we know as a sociological fact that if you are, say, an African-American you experience forms of oppression based on the fact that you are African-American. Explicitly naming that oppression, however, is seen to be divisive, and few people will stand with them behind a unified political purpose. Where does that leave us?

Flix -> Grotesque 3 4

Naming the oppression isn't divisive, in my view. The way in which the naming is done, and at whom the blame is directed, can be - and often is. I believe most people can rationally assess what is and is not oppression if done in a calm and measured way - all except the racists anyway (and they'd probably still be able to see it rationally, they just wouldn't care). But if you start screeching at people, they're just going to switch off - and screeching is generally what we see.

In the wider context of the improvement of people's lives at the bottom end of the scale, I believe you would get buy in from other, non-affected groups. In fact, we see this all the time - BLM and LGBT groups frequently work with each other on combatting things that harm one or both of them. Where this falls flat is when you get the demonising of the white working class (especially the male, cis-gendered working class), who should be allies for other low income people.

Why do people assume that working and lower middle class white men, who are being squeezed and seeing their incomes and quality of life fall in the same way as everyone else, are the problem - the enemy to be railed against, while we have super rich white men (and women, and even an increasing number of super rich non-white men, believe it or not), who are literally stacking the whole system in such a way that all lower income groups suffer? I suspect because actually fixing the issue and compromising and working together isn't as important as being a victim for a lot of the people who lead the identity politics drive. They'd rather scream at racists - who in turn scream back.

The only reason I think the 'progressives' can't see this is because they have too big a stake in the status quo.

bingostan -> thisux 14 15

[neoliberalism] has devastating environmental consequences, Including the impoverishment of huge numbers of people.

TeTsuo36 -> thisux 10 11

But people aren't interested in the World, this is the mistake the globalisers make.
They care about their family, their town and their country. Since 1979 things have stood still. My Plumber Father bought his first house at 22, on a single wage. He could leave a job on Friday and have another one on Monday.

It takes 2 professional salaries to buy a house now and I can't walk to China to pick up that new job over the weekend.

[Jul 06, 2019] The whole globalised neoliberal paradigm - allied to the metropolitan elite s obsession with identity politics at the expense of bottom-line issues - has been broken up by people who now realise centre-left politicians (Clinton/Obama) have presided over whole communities being gutted in the name of free trade (for free trade read labour arbitrage).

Notable quotes:
"... I am an angry white male, and I am not a misogynist, as this paper would have it. I am fully aware of the appalling nature of Donald Trump. ..."
"... On the other hand, I fully understand the bureaucratic nature of the Democrat Party, the embedded interests of Wall Street and the military-industrial complex in that bureaucracy, the dirty tricks that that bureaucratic machinery got up to in order to extinguish Bernie Sander's campaign ..."
"... And I am aware of how Hillary was so keen to service this reality and American image of itself. And to go beyond that, and bomb Libya for 6 months, killing thousands of civilians (Middle eastern unpeople) and, may I suggest, doing nothing whatsoever for the women of Libya. Quite the opposite! ..."
"... Michael Moore, in a talk in which he predicted the victory of Trump before the election, notes how Trump went into an American car factory and told the executives of that company that if they relocated to Mexico, he would put a huge tax on their cars coming into America. Not all was misogyny in the vote for Trump. Whether he delivers on his threat or not, unlike the democrat bureaucratic machinery, he showed he was actually listening to working class Americans and that he was ;prepared to face up to company executives. ..."
"... However, the right wing have very skilfully redirected the anger that SHOULD be directed at what Naomi cleverly calls the "Davos class" onto a very small "immigration" issue that we have in the UK today. ..."
"... It is not going to happen. The holier than thou, supremacist arrogance of the illiberal class, means they can never admit they were wrong. ..."
"... It's all about jobs, really, isn't it? There is a natural fear of 'the other', but if times are good and jobs (proper jobs, not ZHC) are plentiful, it feels less important. On the face of it, it seems odd that the most fear of immigration is in places where there isn't much immigration, but they're often places where there isn't much work either. ..."
"... Rights are important, but identity politics contain too much whimsy and focus on the self. ..."
"... Yes, but they're politically and economically cheap, don't require much thought, and you get to hang out with pop-stars. ..."
Nov 10, 2016 | discussion.theguardian.com

dartmouth75, 10 Nov 2016 10:26

That ship has sailed. Bernie was the opportunity and it wasn't grasped. The moment for a 'left' alternative has been lost for a long time. The whole globalised liberal paradigm - allied to the metropolitan elite's obsession with identity politics at the expense of bottom-line issues - has been broken up by people who now realise centre-left politicians (Clinton/Obama) have presided over whole communities being gutted in the name of 'free' trade (for 'free' trade read labour arbitrage). I felt it in my bones that Trump would be elected - 55% of US households are worse off than they were in 2000, how on earth could anyone possibly think that that would result or a vote for the status quo.

KelvinYearwood , 10 Nov 2016 10:30

Well said Naomi.

I am an angry white male, and I am not a misogynist, as this paper would have it. I am fully aware of the appalling nature of Donald Trump.

On the other hand, I fully understand the bureaucratic nature of the Democrat Party, the embedded interests of Wall Street and the military-industrial complex in that bureaucracy, the dirty tricks that that bureaucratic machinery got up to in order to extinguish Bernie Sander's campaign.

I am aware of how that machinery has been ramping up a situation of global conflict, shamelessly recreating an aggressive Cold war Mk II situation with Russia and China, which is simply cover for the US racist colonial assumption that the world and its resources belongs to it in its sense of itself as an exceptional entity fulfilling its manifest destiny upon a global stage that belongs to its exceptional, wealthy and powerful elites.

And I am aware of how Hillary was so keen to service this reality and American image of itself. And to go beyond that, and bomb Libya for 6 months, killing thousands of civilians (Middle eastern unpeople) and, may I suggest, doing nothing whatsoever for the women of Libya. Quite the opposite!

Michael Moore, in a talk in which he predicted the victory of Trump before the election, notes how Trump went into an American car factory and told the executives of that company that if they relocated to Mexico, he would put a huge tax on their cars coming into America. Not all was misogyny in the vote for Trump. Whether he delivers on his threat or not, unlike the democrat bureaucratic machinery, he showed he was actually listening to working class Americans and that he was ;prepared to face up to company executives.

What has this paper got to say about Hillary and the Democrat Party's class bigotry – its demonstrable contempt for 10s of millions of Americans whose lives are worse now than in 1973, while productivity and wealth overall has skyrocketed over those 43 years.

What has this paper got to say about the lives of African American women, which have been devastated by Republican/Democrat bipartisan policy over the last 43 years?

What has Hadley Freeman got to say about Hillary's comment that President Mubarek of Egypt was "one of the family? A president whose security forces used physical and sexualised abuse of female demonstrators in the Arab Spring?

A feminist would need more than a peg on their nose to vote for Hillary – a feminist would need all the scented oils of Arabia. Perhaps Wahhabi funded Hillary can buy them up.

rebuydonkey , 10 Nov 2016 10:31

Great article. I think there needs to be a lot of soul searching in certain sections of the media and amongst the left wing political parties too. They don't have the correct approach to a rapidly changing ground swell of opinion. They are fast becoming out of touch - leaving a huge void for more conservative rhetoric (euphemism) to take over.

The failure to tackle immigration concerns across the west is the greatest example of comfy left wing elites being so far away from general consensus imo. The assumption that if you are concerned about immigration then you are a racist, xenophobic half wit appears rife amongst elites and the highly educated.

brianpreece -> rebuydonkey

I agree that this is a great article. And I agree that there is a coming migration crisis that we need to be very worried about, as the refugees from the Middle East try desperately for a better life away from conflict zones and poverty. However, the right wing have very skilfully redirected the anger that SHOULD be directed at what Naomi cleverly calls the "Davos class" onto a very small "immigration" issue that we have in the UK today.

The evidence for this is that in the EU referendum, the areas that were most strongly Leave were generally speaking those with few or no immigrants. I campaigned for Remain here in Stockport where there are very few immigrants and I also campaign regularly against privatisation in the NHS and over and over again, I am told that immigrants are the problem in an area which has virtually none. I don't think that people are concerned about immigration are half wits, but I think they've been manipulated.

"Fear the stranger" is an evolutionary response buried deep in our brains that we need to control with rationality and it's such an easy button for the right wing to push. I grew up in Northern Ireland so I saw this at first hand. My grandfather was a highly intelligent technocrat, but he was also an Orangeman. He did not seem able to understand that the Catholics he knew and were his friends were the same "them" that he demonised. All progressive people need now to find a way, as Naomi's article says, to repoint this anger to where it belongs. Sorry if this makes me a comfy left wing elite!

TeTsuo36 -> rebuydonkey

It is not going to happen. The holier than thou, supremacist arrogance of the illiberal class, means they can never admit they were wrong. Look at the past year here ATL and then BTL. Witness the absolute, unchanging and frankly extreme editorial line, in the face of massive discourse and well argued opposition BTL. Even now there are no alarm bells ringing in the back of their minds, they are right and everyone else is wrong. No attempt to understand, such is their unwavering belief in the echo chamber. You will only find an attempted programme of re-education in these pages. They will be still be doing it as Europe falls into the hands of the far-right.

zephirine -> brianpreece

I campaigned for Remain here in Stockport where there are very few immigrants and I also campaign regularly against privatisation in the NHS and over and over again, I am told that immigrants are the problem in an area which has virtually none. I don't think that people are concerned about immigration are half wits, but I think they've been manipulated. "Fear the stranger" is an evolutionary response buried deep in our brains that we need to control with rationality and it's such an easy button for the right wing to push.

It's all about jobs, really, isn't it? There is a natural fear of 'the other', but if times are good and jobs (proper jobs, not ZHC) are plentiful, it feels less important. On the face of it, it seems odd that the most fear of immigration is in places where there isn't much immigration, but they're often places where there isn't much work either.
ID3924525 , 10 Nov 2016 10:33

Here is what we need to understand: a hell of a lot of people are in pain. Under neoliberal policies of deregulation, privatisation, austerity and corporate trade, their living standards have declined precipitously. They have lost jobs. They have lost pensions. They have lost much of the safety net that used to make these losses less frightening. They see a future for their kids even worse than their precarious present.

Yes. But, in the meantime, the system has become so right-wing that it only permits a right-wing outburst - a Social-Democratic one is instantly discredited by the totalitarian media outlets.

There is no way to articulate an effective response to this attack within the system.

OhReallyFFS , 10 Nov 2016 10:34

As usual Klein seems to make more sense than anyone else.

This paper needs to decide where it's going to stand politically for the next few years.

Rights are important, but identity politics contain too much whimsy and focus on the self.

tomandlu -> OhReallyFFS 2 3

Yes, but they're politically and economically cheap, don't require much thought, and you get to hang out with pop-stars.

SaintTimothy , 10 Nov 2016 11:01

This article is spot on except that both Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren jumped on the Clinton neoliberal train for reasons of political expediency. From now on, anything either of them say should be critically examined before being supported.

[Jul 06, 2019] It wasn't just free trade that the white working class voters of the rust belt states were angry about, it was also high immigration

Notable quotes:
"... government for the centre ground has been about management- the days when the US New Deal funded by taxing the rich and which built the wealth Americans now miss, and the Labour post war government that built the NHS [and taxed the rich] is part of history. Instead we have no new innovation but a little bit of tweaking with banks and global business. ..."
"... In return the gutted communities become less smart and given bread and circuses but their privilege and lack of mobility means they don't travel to pick fruit elsewhere- yet they still demand food on the table and the only ones prepared to travel and work hard are the even greater poor. ..."
Nov 10, 2016 | discussion.theguardian.com

CosmoCrawley, 10 Nov 2016 10:44

It wasn't just free trade that the white working class voters of the rust belt states were angry about, it was also high immigration. Naomi doesn't mention this, probably because fluid borders is one policy which the Davos class and left-liberals like herself agree on.

Such a[n intersection left] coalition is possible. In Canada, we have begun to cobble it together under the banner of a people's agenda called The Leap Manifesto, endorsed by more than 220 organisations from Greenpeace Canada to Black Lives Matter Toronto, and some of our largest trade unions.

And if such a coalition of the usual suspects got off the ground in the USA it would just about seal a second term for Donald.

Cuniform -> CosmoCrawley 0 1

Would this be a movement that would see us being turned from supine consumers back into citizens who actively care about more than a new TV?

Otherwise, look to see a recurrence, here and elsewhere, of the riots we saw in England in 2011.

JulesBywaterLees -> CosmoCrawley

government for the centre ground has been about management- the days when the US New Deal funded by taxing the rich and which built the wealth Americans now miss, and the Labour post war government that built the NHS [and taxed the rich] is part of history. Instead we have no new innovation but a little bit of tweaking with banks and global business.

No government wants to upset the powers that run the economy- so a multinational can move its workforce to a country with lower pay, lower environmental regulation- it can use the inequality to move not only manufacturing but people.

In return the gutted communities become less smart and given bread and circuses but their privilege and lack of mobility means they don't travel to pick fruit elsewhere- yet they still demand food on the table and the only ones prepared to travel and work hard are the even greater poor.

And the right simply blames the immigrants, the others and you believe them.

nollafgm -> Cuniform

don't stop at 2011, the precedent started in 1934 in Nuremberg Germany. Trump used the same how to manual written by Goebbels, he got the idea from the Romans.

[Jul 06, 2019] The neoliberal elite including Clinton's wing of Democratic Party is totally disconnected from the rest of the country

Notable quotes:
"... Great post. Inequality has been visibly widening in the US (and the UK) for years, principally as a result of globalisation. ..."
"... some people see that you put in the same republican representatives that are just the opposite side of the same coin. Actually the repubs are worse . No to unions, higher min wage, tax cuts to the very wealthy etc. Dems talk about these issue but can never get it together to actually implement them. ..."
"... I think Naomi has given the answer by mistake. The liberal elite is totally disconnected from the rest of the country. It wasn't just trump it was a red wave of republican victory ..."
Nov 10, 2016 | discussion.theguardian.com

Scott Ward, 10 Nov 2016 10:49

This is an excellent response. However already you can hear the liberal elite dismiss the Trump voters as idiots - it's always funny when you hear people complain that Trump threatening to put his opponent in jail, or Brexiters threatening the partiality of the judiciary are threats to the democratic system... these same people then start making the argument the electorate is too stupid to make a decision. The liberal elite need to acknowledge the tangible suffering and injustice being faced by working-class people across Europe and the United States, and act to address it.

There was a telling point early on in the election coverage when the democrat representative on the BBC panel was arrogantly smiling once the exit polls showed Clinton on for a comfortable victory. Andrew Neil put him straight back in his place when he asked 'is it not concerning for the Democrat Party that they are no longer the party of the blue-collar American?' The representative highlighted the arrogance and complacency of the liberal elite, that seconds after the election result looked to be in, he seemed to go back to not caring about working-class people and re-enter the elite bubble.

Flooch -> Scott Ward

Great post. Inequality has been visibly widening in the US (and the UK) for years, principally as a result of globalisation. A large proportion of the people are "mad as hell" and have decided to try to do something about it. Trump is unlikely to be the answer, but there will be more support for anti-politicians (such as Grillo & the 5 Star movement in Italy) while the conventional politicians continue to bleat nonsense.

boilingriver -> Scott Ward

some people see that you put in the same republican representatives that are just the opposite side of the same coin. Actually the repubs are worse . No to unions, higher min wage, tax cuts to the very wealthy etc. Dems talk about these issue but can never get it together to actually implement them.

montmartian , 10 Nov 2016 10:49

I think Naomi has given the answer by mistake. The liberal elite is totally disconnected from the rest of the country. It wasn't just trump it was a red wave of republican victory -- her article demonstrates how little she understands.

Flooch -> montmartian 3 4

The liberal elite includes the media, who can't wait to run stories of "thousands" of people protesting about Trump in the US. Yes, thousands, in a country with a population of 318 million.

[Jul 06, 2019] This election will spawn losers all over the place; the most tragic losers will be those that voted a supposed maverick into the high office in order to fight the 'liberal' or whatever establishment hoping to bring jobs back to the people.

Notable quotes:
"... you cannot fight the establishment with the establishment and Trump -who is a billionaire FFS- is another one who represents that. If he didn't he would not have been allowed to run. ..."
"... It is strange and telling that the discourse within the American public over the last 40 years or so allowed themselves to discuss and tackle to various levels of success issues like sexism, racism, institutional racism, misogyny, xenophobia, even sexuality and yes, even gun laws but one thing that is an absolute no-no in discourse is the economical and subsequentially political system. ..."
"... As long as people believe the American Dream is within reach to them, just like they believe it was for individuals like Trump, the economic system will remain its status quo and that is: riches for a few, struggles for many. ..."
"... You correctly state that you cannot fight the establishment with Trump. But I suggest he is the best choice. You assume a choice has been made to get that single person to help them. I suggest a choice has been made to plant a suicide bomber in the establishment. ..."
"... With Trump in that position, the entire credibility of the establishment has been destroyed. Trump is a clown. An idiot. Every time he spouting something misogynistic or racist he became a better weapon for the public to use to against the establishments structures. No better place for him than to have him as the Icon of the establishment. The (now) unacceptable face. ..."
"... As you say, the power is with the people. But they first must be angry and disgusted at the establishment. Clinton was not distasteful enough to rally the lefts anger. Trump is perfect. ..."
"... Trump will not stop the wars. All anyone had to do was look at the voting records of the republicans in office( that were reelected) that voted for more war equipment. They also wanted TTIP. Until the public realizes we have to change our state representatives nothing will change. ..."
Nov 10, 2016 | discussion.theguardian.com

CaptainSpaulding, 10 Nov 2016 10:42

This election will spawn losers all over the place; the most tragic losers will be those that voted a supposed maverick into the high office in order to fight the 'liberal' or whatever establishment hoping to bring jobs back to the people.

However, you cannot fight the establishment with the establishment and Trump -who is a billionaire FFS- is another one who represents that. If he didn't he would not have been allowed to run.

Just for the same reason that Bernie was squeezed out, not that I think he is a real socialist but one who would have come too close to do some real change. To quote Rosa Luxemburg: If an election would mean real change it would have been abolished

It is strange and telling that the discourse within the American public over the last 40 years or so allowed themselves to discuss and tackle to various levels of success issues like sexism, racism, institutional racism, misogyny, xenophobia, even sexuality and yes, even gun laws but one thing that is an absolute no-no in discourse is the economical and subsequentially political system.

As long as people believe the American Dream is within reach to them, just like they believe it was for individuals like Trump, the economic system will remain its status quo and that is: riches for a few, struggles for many.

The establishment will see for that and always find ways to maintain. One thing that has always worked perfectly fine is to find scapegoats like foreigners, immigrants, people on welfare, coloured people , minorities and so on. Can't even say this is typically American, it has worked most recently in the UK within the brexit discussion and in Germany and other places.

The power is with people, I remain optimistic; an election, though, will not change anything

SocTrap -> CaptainSpaulding 0 1

You correctly state that you cannot fight the establishment with Trump. But I suggest he is the best choice. You assume a choice has been made to get that single person to help them. I suggest a choice has been made to plant a suicide bomber in the establishment.

The problem has been that Obama has put an empathetic, intelligent and articulate face on the front of a deeply corrupted system. To attack the system one appears to be attacking him and that can be awkward.

With Trump in that position, the entire credibility of the establishment has been destroyed. Trump is a clown. An idiot. Every time he spouting something misogynistic or racist he became a better weapon for the public to use to against the establishments structures. No better place for him than to have him as the Icon of the establishment. The (now) unacceptable face.

As you say, the power is with the people. But they first must be angry and disgusted at the establishment. Clinton was not distasteful enough to rally the lefts anger. Trump is perfect.

BizaaroLand , 10 Nov 2016 10:42

One thing particular about Killery: I believe she was meant to deliver more war for her Davos employers. I've had enough of 'Mericuh's wars for profit, and to protect the Bankers fortunes. At this point I'm ready to vote for Idi Amin, if it stops the banker wars being waged for them by their proxy the United States.

boilingriver ->