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

[Oct 09, 2019] How the neoliberal elite manipulates the MSM and the narrative for purposes of misdirecting attention and perception of their true intentions and objectives

Oct 09, 2019 | off-guardian.org

Casandra2

"wc_tw" target="_blank" title="Share On Twitter" href="https://twitter.com/intent/tweet?text=This+excellent+article+demonstrates+how+the+Con...+&url=https%3A%2F%2Foff-guardian.org%2F2019%2F10%2F06%2Fwatch-udo-ulfkotte-bought-journalists%2F%23comment-97161"> This excellent article demonstrates how the Controlling Elite manipulates the Media and the Message for purposes of misdirecting attention and perception of their true intentions and objective of securing Global Ownership (aka New World Order).

This approach has been assiduously applied, across the board, over many years, to the point were they now own and run everything required to subjugate the 'human race' to the horrors of their psychopathic inclinations. They are presently holding the global economy on hold until their AI population (social credit) control system/grid is in place before bringing the house down.

Needless to say, when this happens a disunited and frightened Global Population will be at their mercy.

If you wish to gain a full insight of what the Controlling Elite is about, and capable of, I recommend David Icke's latest publication 'Trigger'. I know he's been tagged a 'nutter' over the past thirty years, but I reckon this book represents the 'gold standard' in terms of generating awareness as a basis for launching a united global population counter-attack (given a great strategy) against forces that can only be defined as pure 'EVIL'.


MASTER OF UNIVE

"wc_tw" target="_blank" title="Share On Twitter" href="https://twitter.com/intent/tweet?text=Corporate+Journalism+is+all+about+corporatism+a...+&url=https%3A%2F%2Foff-guardian.org%2F2019%2F10%2F06%2Fwatch-udo-ulfkotte-bought-journalists%2F%23comment-97149">

Corporate Journalism is all about corporatism and the continuation of it. If the Intelligence Community needs greater fools for staffing purposes in the corporate hierarchy they look for anyone that can be compromised via inducements of whatever the greater fools want. Engaging in compromise allows both parties to have complicit & explicit understanding that corruption and falsehood are the tools of the trade. To all-of-a-sudden develop a conscience after decades of playing the part of a willing participant is understandable in light of the guilt complex one must develop after screwing everyone in the world out of the critical assessment we all need to obtain in order to make decisions regarding our futures.

Bought & paid for corporate Journalists are controlled by the Intelligence Agencies and always have been since at least the Second World War. The CIA typically runs bribery & blackmail at the state & federal level so that when necessary they have instant useless eaters to offer up as political sacrifice when required via state run propaganda, & impression management.

Assuming that journalism is an ethical occupation is naïve and a fools' game even in the alternative news domain as all writers write from bias & a lack of real knowledge. Few writers are intellectually honest or even aware of their own limits as writers. The writer is a failure and not a hero borne in myth. Writers struggle to write & publish. Bought and paid for writers don't have a struggle in terms of writing because they are told what to write before they write as automatons for the Intelligence Community knowing that they sold their collective souls to the Prince of Darkness for whatever trinkets, bobbles, or bling they could get their greedy hands on at the time.

Developing a conscience late in life is too late.

May all that sell their souls to the Intel agencies understand that pond scum never had a conscience to begin with.

Once pond scum always pond scum.

Loverat

"wc_tw" target="_blank" title="Share On Twitter" href="https://twitter.com/intent/tweet?text=We+need+to+see+a+few+more+UK+journalists+break+...+&url=https%3A%2F%2Foff-guardian.org%2F2019%2F10%2F06%2Fwatch-udo-ulfkotte-bought-journalists%2F%23comment-97118">

We need to see a few more UK journalists break free from their shackles. Not easy I guess when they are so brainwashed and seemingly ignorant to start with. Plus the financial incentives and perks to toe the line.

I think it is Anna Brees who used to work for BBC who resigned and is making a success of things. I see she is supporting Robert Stuart's documentary about the BBC reporting of an alleged bombing incident in Syria. Good on her.

On another note I used to hold John Simpson in high regard. He visited and wrote a book on Iran after the revolution and around the time of the Iran – Iraq war. But look at him now. He seems like a brainwashed old fool who actually believes what he reports. If I was a journalist and lied throughout my career for money, I would have given up the pretence when I reached retirement age. So the fact he still reports rubbish must mean he is totally brain dead.

Still give him some credit. At least he bothered to visit the countries at war. Nowadays jounalists just whine about Assad from New York and Beirut cafes their toxic commentary influenced by their annoyance at being banned from Syria. A few journalists seem to have lashed out at Russia for similar reasons – I think Luke Harding might have been one.

But let's see if a few more journalists reach out to the side of truth and sanity. Here's hoping.

Harry Stotle

"wc_tw" target="_blank" title="Share On Twitter" href="https://twitter.com/intent/tweet?text=The+British+MSM+is+an+important+cog+in+the+war+...+&url=https%3A%2F%2Foff-guardian.org%2F2019%2F10%2F06%2Fwatch-udo-ulfkotte-bought-journalists%2F%23comment-97134">

The British MSM is an important cog in the war machine – it's their job to condition the public mood so that more people are not revulsed by the west's long-running campaign to commit terror offences (using bogus rationalisations such as 'humanitarian aid' or 'spreading democracy').

There is virtually no chance that journalists who are part of this apperatus will have the courage, principles or intelligence of a Julian Assange – if anything they are more likely to denigrate any dissent who exposes how utterly shite they are.
http://medialens.org/index.php/alerts/alert-archive/2019/911-stockholm-syndrome-julian-assange-and-the-limits-of-guardian-dissent.html

George Cornell

"wc_tw" target="_blank" title="Share On Twitter" href="https://twitter.com/intent/tweet?text=Thanks+Harry.+The+Proquest+newspaper+database+i...+&url=https%3A%2F%2Foff-guardian.org%2F2019%2F10%2F06%2Fwatch-udo-ulfkotte-bought-journalists%2F%23comment-97239">

Thanks Harry. The Proquest newspaper database is very informative. The Fraudian has surely earned its nicknames.

[Oct 09, 2019] George Orwell assumes that if such societies as he describes in Nineteen Eighty-Four come into being there will be several super states. These super states will naturally be in opposition to each other or (a novel point) will pretend to be much more in opposition than in fact they are

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... This is the direction in which the world is going at the present time, and the trend lies deep in the political, social and economic foundations of the contemporary world situation. ..."
"... Specifically the danger lies in the structure imposed on Socialist and on Liberal capitalist communities by the necessity to prepare for total war with the U.S.S.R. and the new weapons, of which of course the atomic bomb is the most powerful and the most publicized. But danger lies also in the acceptance of a totalitarian outlook by intellectuals of all colours. ..."
"... Two of the principal super states will obviously be the Anglo-American world and Eurasia. If these two great blocks line up as mortal enemies it is obvious that the Anglo-Americans will not take the name of their opponents and will not dramatize themselves on the scene of history as Communists. Thus they will have to find a new name for themselves. The name suggested in Nineteen Eighty-Four is of course Ingsoc, but in practice a wide range of choices is open. In the U.S.A. the phrase "Americanism" or "hundred per cent Americanism" is suitable and the qualifying adjective is as totalitarian as anyone could wish. ..."
"... Pretty much explains the SDP and NuLabourInc and his name sake Blair and our political landscape of the last 50 years, don't you think? ..."
"... Also pay attention to the 'parody phrase. ' ..."
Oct 09, 2019 | off-guardian.org

Dungroanin -> MikeE Oct 9, 2019 12:46 AM

That is my down tick.

Because i feel that some agenda is at play. I'm not going to accuse you of trolling, or even a bit of gas lighting, but it seems like a slide into classic red scaring and recasting of Eric Blair

By way of explaining my emotion and since you mention Warburg, here is an example of Orwellian post humous attribution. He never said "imagine a boot stamping on a human face, forever."

'from a post-publication press release directed by publisher Fredric Warburg toward readers who "had misinterpreted [Orwell's] aim, taking the novel as a criticism of the current British Labour Party, or of contemporary socialism in general." The quotation from the press release was "soon given the status of a last statement or deathbed appeal, given that Orwell was hospitalized at the time and dead six months later."

You can read more at georgeorwellnovels.com, which provides a great deal of context on this press release, which runs, in full, as follows:

It has been suggested by some of the reviewers of Nineteen Eighty-Four that it is the author's view that this, or something like this, is what will happen inside the next forty years in the Western world. This is not correct. I think that, allowing for the book being after all a parody, something like Nineteen Eighty-Four could happen. This is the direction in which the world is going at the present time, and the trend lies deep in the political, social and economic foundations of the contemporary world situation.

Specifically the danger lies in the structure imposed on Socialist and on Liberal capitalist communities by the necessity to prepare for total war with the U.S.S.R. and the new weapons, of which of course the atomic bomb is the most powerful and the most publicized. But danger lies also in the acceptance of a totalitarian outlook by intellectuals of all colours.

The moral to be drawn from this dangerous nightmare situation is a simple one: Don't let it happen. It depends on you.

George Orwell assumes that if such societies as he describes in Nineteen Eighty-Four come into being there will be several super states. This is fully dealt with in the relevant chapters of Nineteen Eighty-Four. It is also discussed from a different angle by James Burnham in The Managerial Revolution. These super states will naturally be in opposition to each other or (a novel point) will pretend to be much more in opposition than in fact they are.

Two of the principal super states will obviously be the Anglo-American world and Eurasia. If these two great blocks line up as mortal enemies it is obvious that the Anglo-Americans will not take the name of their opponents and will not dramatize themselves on the scene of history as Communists. Thus they will have to find a new name for themselves. The name suggested in Nineteen Eighty-Four is of course Ingsoc, but in practice a wide range of choices is open. In the U.S.A. the phrase "Americanism" or "hundred per cent Americanism" is suitable and the qualifying adjective is as totalitarian as anyone could wish.

If there is a failure of nerve and the Labour party breaks down in its attempt to deal with the hard problems with which it will be faced, tougher types than the present Labour leaders will inevitably take over, drawn probably from the ranks of the Left, but not sharing the Liberal aspirations of those now in power. Members of the present British government, from Mr. Attlee and Sir Stafford Cripps down to Aneurin Bevan will never willingly sell the pass to the enemy, and in general the older men, nurtured in a Liberal tradition, are safe, but the younger generation is suspect and the seeds of totalitarian thought are probably widespread among them. It is invidious to mention names, but everyone could without difficulty think for himself of prominent English and American personalities whom the cap would fit.'
http://www.openculture.com/2014/11/george-orwells-final-warning.html

-- -- -- -

Pretty much explains the SDP and NuLabourInc and his name sake Blair and our political landscape of the last 50 years, don't you think?

Also pay attention to the 'parody phrase. '
'
As i wrote earlier, perhaps Blair of Eton ultimately saw how clearly hist talents had been misused by the 'totalitarians' before he died.

I understand that some of his works are still censored and others never published. As are his state employment in propaganda on which he probably based his 'parody' on.

[Oct 08, 2019] Robert Reich as a despicable neoliberal stooge who pushed lies and distortions bout Ukrainegate

Ukraine is not an independent country. It is a de-facto colony of the USA. Trump just ordered his subordinate (in a very polite ) term to conduct investigation of criminal behaviour of Biden family.
Not defending Trump by Robert is "full of Schiff"
Oct 08, 2019 | www.theguardian.com

When the framers of the constitution gave Congress the power to impeach a president, one of the high crimes they had in mind was acceding to what Alexander Hamilton called "the desire in foreign powers to gain an improper ascendant in our councils". James Madison argued for impeachment lest a president "might betray his trust to foreign powers".

The second question is whether Trump did this. The answer is also an unqualified yes. In the published version of his phone conversation with Ukraine's president, Volodymyr Zelenskiy, Trump asks for the "favor" of digging up dirt on Joe Biden.


reinhardpolley , 5 Oct 2019 09:50

Trump is much more than the kid with his hand in the cookie jar, like a brat he smashed the cookie jar and said "What cookie Jar? Biden did it!"
And the GOP wimps are there, either nodding in agreement, or looking the other way..
NotIdefix -> reinhardpolley , 5 Oct 2019 11:58
https://www.politicalflare.com/2019/10/biographer-reveals-trump-was-a-vicious-bully-as-a-child-who-threw-rocks-at-babies /

"Trump was a loud-mouthed classroom know-it-all who could never admit he was wrong and boasted of giving his music teacher a black eye."

Jayem64 -> NotIdefix , 5 Oct 2019 13:31
Well.. Total Sociopath, then, maybe even a full-on Psychopath.

Anti-social-personality disorders in the highest scale -so to speak- always are there since childhood. Psychopaths are as such genetically, from birth. Unlike sociopaths. Sociopaths usually have become as such through things/trauma's experienced in life. Their initially healthy front-cortex is usually either damaged, or has less influence on their behaviour. In Psychopaths, the front cortex doesn't function at all it seems, or at sùch a low level that it can be considered absent. Psychopaths usually have a history of seriously harming animals, people, insects, around them for fun since childhood.

End-result almost the same, though. Complete and utter lack of empathy, ( though, Sociopaths often dó have empathy for their direct family/relatives, where Osychopaths even lack thàt.) stratospherically elevated sense of superiority, prone to uncontrolled ( sometimes even violent and murderous) tantrums when things do not go as he/she wants/demands etc... Enjoyment in the suffering of others. No conscience to speak of etc.

So, in short, Trump to a tee.

mbidding -> NotIdefix , 5 Oct 2019 17:26
As also noted in The Making of Donald Trump by David Kay Johnston. A worthwhile read.
ValuedCustomer -> neutralpaddy , 5 Oct 2019 10:06
The brand value was all he wanted and that has multiplied. It was always win-win.

Heh. I wonder if you underestimate the ruthlessness of the establishment. Once stripped of the (so far surprisingly robust) protections afforded by elected office I imagine it's more likely he'll be hounded to his grave pour dencourager les autres than ignored as merely a spent pol. I doubt they'll observe the decencies of the mafia and leave his family alone either.

Nada89 , 5 Oct 2019 10:02
The US is a tinpot republic that ever since the Patriot Act has virtually reduced all citizens to enemies of a paranoid state, untl proven otherwise.

In a strange sort of way a president like Trump seems like the ideal sort of man to head such a dysfunctional system (because it reflects how uncivilised it is).

Put another way - even if a piece of political theatre does take place (in the shape of an impeachment) it is only a matter of time before Trump is replaced by an unequally unappetising leader who will resume business as usual with powers that really control US economic and military policy.

curiouswes -> Nada89 , 5 Oct 2019 10:23
all the patriot act did was tell the American people that the government doesn't give a "hoot" about the US constitution (specifically the 4th amendment). If the American people wish to trade their freedom for their security, then the constitutionally legal way to do that is with another amendment effectively repealing the fourth.
MARK MANNERS -> Nada89 , 5 Oct 2019 16:15

In a strange sort of way a president like Trump seems like the ideal sort of man to head such a dysfunctional system (because it reflects how uncivilised it is).


The American public have been groomed for years, mainly through cutting education budgets, to accept this kind of president. The pesky internet tends to even things up, but people need to want to use it. They certainly will when their buying power drops.

Put another way - even if a piece of political theatre does take place (in the shape of an impeachment) it is only a matter of time before Trump is replaced by an unequally unappetising leader who will resume business as usual with powers that really control US economic and military policy.


It goes in a pendulum swing. Bush, Obama, Trump, Someone Else... It's not so much a right left swing as an Idiot-swing. What the American public want is someone they can admire. Many people admired Obama but so do many people admire Trump. They're not the same people. What Obama promised, and delivered, was get the USA out of the shock of 2007-08 and put it back on its feet again after Bush spent all that money on the Irak war. This keeps everyone happy, as a large part of the US economy is from consumption. It also keeps a part of industry happy, as they need to be able to export and import. The public is not happy with a weak dollar, nor tarifs that both push import prices up. Bush kept the arms industry very happy, for obvious reasons and Trump's constant tension-building abroad sort of does the same. But it still comes down to how happy the public is and how much they can or refuse to be manipulated. They're a bit wiser now.
PortilloMoment -> Ziontrain , 5 Oct 2019 12:36
'Politics in the country is a cesspool.'

I don't disagree, but,

Newsflash: Politics the world over is a cesspool. History and Ancient history says it has always been so. Names and places, incidents and scandals are in no short supply to confirm nothing much has changed in the modern world.

"Politics is a dirty business" is the understatement of all time. While many politicians are indeed working in the interests of their constituents, many more are not and political parties have only one interest - themselves.

If you want an indication of how much the table is tilted, witness the recent announcement that it's ok for politicians to lie when trying to increase their support. If that doesn't tell us all we need to know - about the links between politics and business, or the fundamental lack of morals inherent in all politics, of the contempt the public are held in, I don't know what will.

SmilinJackAbbott , 5 Oct 2019 10:06

House Democrats will vote to impeach


Yeah but they changed the rules to bypass a vote on an impeachment inquiry specifically to prevent the accused due process & the ability to challenge the accusations.

In other words they'll vote to impeach after preventing opposing evidence, in this case the Obama administration meddling in 2016 with the Ukraine's help & the Biden pay for play operation laughably conducted under the guise of rooting out corruption in Ukraine.

As grizzled old prosecutor Rudy Giuliani said he learnt early on if you want to find where the corruption is ignore everything else, follow the money, and it all leads straight to the Bidens.

SmilinJackAbbott -> Jdivney , 5 Oct 2019 10:13
That didn't take long. There we have it. The Dems are totally justified conducting a kangaroo court show trial because 'there is no opposing evidence'.
Ziontrain , 5 Oct 2019 10:26
Ok Trump is dirty and should go.

But then what? Is there any core of decent politicians left to rule the country? Who? The GOP crooks? The Clinton gang? The Bidens whose son is peddling political influence in corrupt countries? Peloisi and Schumer who are up to their eyeballs in dirty money from AIPAC and are savaging the few clean young politicians in their own party ? There's no end to it.

We are so far from cleaning up the place.

Trump could go, but the circus rolls on...

curiouswes -> Ziontrain , 5 Oct 2019 11:38

Who?

Tulsi Gabbard is the only person running that has the moral authority to run this nation and the ability to get the required votes in order to win. Doing that is going to extremely difficult since the media is controlled by the corporations and the corporations don't want her. Ike warned us about the military industrial complex over 50 years ago and she is the first candidate to openly challenge its authority since that warning.

Jayem64 -> Ziontrain , 5 Oct 2019 13:57
Trump goes.. They'll get Pence..

Oh. Dear.

Religious loon as POTUS 'What could go wrong'

Bluejil , 5 Oct 2019 05:53
We truly have lost all sense today, from the USA to the UK, these two nations have most certainly lost the plot, I suppose the writing was always on the wall. Most of us are for our neighbours no matter their class, colour or religion, most of us want a civilised society where we have the necessities in live, decent wages, health care, education. Services that protect us. Shame the actual few keep voting against these things, whether that be from their misery, ignorance or whatever the latest excuse is, those of us who want to return to dignity and work towards progress must vote the charlatans out.
newbieveryday -> Bluejil , 5 Oct 2019 06:02
Western democracy is dying of greed, consumerism and power madness. Xi and Putin can't believe their dumb luck at how the US and UK are falling apart. People in places like Eastern Europe, Taiwan, etc., may start wondering whether they should gather winter coats and heavy shoes and have a talk with their children.

[Sep 22, 2019] 9-11 You Weren t Stupid, Mr. Brown!

Notable quotes:
"... Shortly after 9:59 a.m. Brown had been standing on a roof in New York City about 30 blocks from the World Trade Center. He was looking directly at the South Tower as it was destroyed. He was not just a journalist and not just a news anchor: he was an eyewitness. ..."
"... He immediately interrupted a journalist who was reporting live about the Pentagon: ..."
"... Wow! Jamie. Jamie, I need you to stop for a second. There has just been a huge explosion we can see a billowing smoke rising and I can't I'll tell you that I can't see that second Tower. But there was a cascade of sparks and fire and now this it looks almost like a mushroom cloud, explosion, this huge, billowing smoke in the second Tower " (9:59:07 a.m.) ..."
"... Brown: Was there Brian, did it sound like there was an explosion before the second collapse, or was the noise the collapse itself?" (10:41:08 a.m.) ..."
"... Palmer: "Well, from our distance I was not able to distinguish between an explosion and the collapse. We were several hundred yards away. But we clearly saw the building come down. I heard your report of a fourth explosion: I can't confirm that. But we heard some "boom" and then the building fold in on itself." ..."
"... Rose Arce: I'm about a block away. And there were several people that were hanging out the windows right below where the plane crashed, when suddenly you saw the top of the building start to shake, and people began leaping from the windows in the north side of the building. You saw two people at first plummet and then a third one, and then the entire top of the building just blew up ..."
"... Patty: About an hour ago I was on the corner of Broadway and Park Place -- that's about a thousand yards from the World Trade Center -- when the first Tower collapsed. It was a massive explosion. At the time the police were trying desperately to evacuate people from the area. When that explosion occurred it was like a scene out of a horror film. ..."
"... After checking with his reporters, Brown continued to explore his hypotheses, this time by consulting authorities. This was where he was led astray. "Authorities" are less securely tied to evidence than witnesses and may, in fact, be implicated in high level deception. ..."
"... Brown: Sir, do you believe that was there another set of explosions that caused the buildings to collapse, or was it the structural damage caused by the planes?" ( 12:31:45 p.m. ) ..."
"... Later in the afternoon Giuliani got his script right and was more definite in ruling out explosions. But, of course, Giuliani had no right to pronounce on the science of building destruction. Brown should have persisted in his questioning. ..."
Sep 11, 2019 | off-guardian.org
9

9/11: You Weren't Stupid, Mr. Brown! CNN's brief shining moment on September 11, 2001 Graeme MacQueen

Graeme MacQueen

Aaron Brown, news anchor during most of CNN's coverage on September 11, 2001, was interviewed on the 15th anniversary of the event. He said in that interview that he had felt "profoundly stupid" when he was reporting the destruction of the first Tower (the South Tower) on that morning.

I I will tell you that a million things had been running through my mind about what might happen. About the effect of a jet plane hitting people above where the impact was, what might be going on in those buildings. And it just never occurred to me that they'd come down. And I thought it's the only time I thought, maybe you just don't have what it takes to do a story like this. Because it just had never occurred to me." (CNN, Sept. 11, 2016, interviewer Brian Stelter)

Is it not remarkable that Brown was made to feel stupid, and to feel inadequate as a news anchor, during the precise moments of his coverage of that day when his senses and his mind were fully engaged and on the right track?

Shortly after 9:59 a.m. Brown had been standing on a roof in New York City about 30 blocks from the World Trade Center. He was looking directly at the South Tower as it was destroyed. He was not just a journalist and not just a news anchor: he was an eyewitness.

He immediately interrupted a journalist who was reporting live about the Pentagon:

Wow! Jamie. Jamie, I need you to stop for a second. There has just been a huge explosion we can see a billowing smoke rising and I can't I'll tell you that I can't see that second Tower. But there was a cascade of sparks and fire and now this it looks almost like a mushroom cloud, explosion, this huge, billowing smoke in the second Tower " (9:59:07 a.m.)

Having reported honestly what he saw with his own eyes, Brown next did exactly what he should have done as a responsible news anchor. He let his audience know that while he did not know what had happened it was clear that there were two hypotheses in play, the explosion hypothesis and the structural failure hypothesis. And then he went to his reporters on the scene, as well as to authorities, to try and sort out which hypothesis was correct.

Here are examples of his setting forth -- after the first building was destroyed and again after the second was destroyed -- the rival hypotheses:

and then just in the last several minutes there has been a second explosion or, at least, perhaps not an explosion, perhaps part of the building simply collapsed. And that's what we saw and that's what we're looking at." ( 10:03:47 )

This is just a few minutes ago we don't know if something happened, another explosion, or if the building was so weakened it just collapsed." ( 10:04:36 a.m. )

we believe now that we can say that both, that portions of both Towers of the World Trade Centre, have collapsed. Whether there were second explosions, that is to say, explosions other than the planes hitting them, that caused this to happen we cannot tell you." ( 10:29:21 a.m. )

Our reporters in the area say they heard loud noises when that happened. It is unclear to them and to us whether those were explosions going on in the building or if that was simply the sound of the collapse of the buildings as they collapsed, making these huge noises as they came down." ( 11:17:45 a.m .)

Brown's honest reporting of his perceptions was balanced repeatedly by his caution. Here is an example:

it almost looks it almost looks like one of those implosions of buildings that you see except there is nothing controlled about this this is devastation." ( 10:53:10 a.m. )

His next move, having set forth the two hypotheses, was to ask his reporters on the scene, who were choking on pulverized debris and witnessing gruesome scenes, what they perceived.

Reporter Brian Palmer said honestly that he was not in a position to resolve the issue.

Brown: Was there Brian, did it sound like there was an explosion before the second collapse, or was the noise the collapse itself?" (10:41:08 a.m.)

Palmer: "Well, from our distance I was not able to distinguish between an explosion and the collapse. We were several hundred yards away. But we clearly saw the building come down. I heard your report of a fourth explosion: I can't confirm that. But we heard some "boom" and then the building fold in on itself."

Two others were more definite about what they perceived.

Brown: Rose, whadya got? ( 10:29:43 a.m. )

Rose Arce: I'm about a block away. And there were several people that were hanging out the windows right below where the plane crashed, when suddenly you saw the top of the building start to shake, and people began leaping from the windows in the north side of the building. You saw two people at first plummet and then a third one, and then the entire top of the building just blew up

Brown: Who do we have on the phone, guys? Just help me out here. Patty, are you there? ( 10:57:51 a.m. )

Patty: Yes, I am here.

Brown: Whaddya got?

Patty: About an hour ago I was on the corner of Broadway and Park Place -- that's about a thousand yards from the World Trade Center -- when the first Tower collapsed. It was a massive explosion. At the time the police were trying desperately to evacuate people from the area. When that explosion occurred it was like a scene out of a horror film.

As can be seen, the explosion hypothesis was flourishing. Even the news caption at the bottom of the screen shortly after the destruction of the South Tower ( 10:03:12 a.m. ) is striking to read today:

"THIRD EXPLOSION SHATTERS WORLD TRADE CENTER IN NEW YORK"

After checking with his reporters, Brown continued to explore his hypotheses, this time by consulting authorities. This was where he was led astray. "Authorities" are less securely tied to evidence than witnesses and may, in fact, be implicated in high level deception.

First Brown consulted a political authority. He got the Mayor of New York City on the line.

Brown: Sir, do you believe that was there another set of explosions that caused the buildings to collapse, or was it the structural damage caused by the planes?" ( 12:31:45 p.m. )

Giuliani: I don't, I don't know, I, uh, I, uh I, I saw the first collapse and heard the second 'cause I was in a building when the second took place. I think it was structural but I cannot be sure."

Later in the afternoon Giuliani got his script right and was more definite in ruling out explosions. But, of course, Giuliani had no right to pronounce on the science of building destruction. Brown should have persisted in his questioning.

Finally, Brown brought in an engineer, Jim DeStefano–associated, we were told, with the National Council of Structural Engineers. DeStefano's brief comments put an end to Brown's explosion hypothesis and rendered CNN's news coverage safe for public consumption.

Brown: Jim De Stefano is a structural engineer. He knows about big buildings and what happens in these sort of catastrophic moments. He joins us from Deerfield, Connecticut on the phone. Jim, the plane hits what and I hope this isn't a terribly oversimplified question, but what happens to the building itself? ( 04:20:45 p.m. )

DeStefano: It's a tremendous impact that's applied to the building when a collision like this occurs. And it's clear that that impact was sufficient to do damage to the columns and the bracing system supporting the building. That coupled with the fire raging and the high temperatures softening the structural steel then precipitated a destabilization of the columns and clearly the columns buckled at the lower floors causing the building to collapse.

I am not in a position to call DeStefano a fake or to claim he was reading from a script given to him by others, but I am prepared to say he was extremely irresponsible. He did not say "here is one hypothesis." He said, in effect, "this is what happened." He was in no position to make this claim. There had been no photographic or video analysis of the building destruction, no analysis of the remains of the WTC, no cataloguing of eyewitnesses, nor any of the other methods of evidence gathering. He was shooting in the dark. He was silencing a journalist who was sincerely trying to discover the truth. As we have known for years now, DeStefano not only could have been wrong : he was wrong.*

And let us remember that the entire War on Terror, with its suffering and oppression, has depended on this false structural failure hypothesis. No structural failure hypothesis, no guilty Muslim fanatics. No guilty Muslim fanatics, no War on Terror.

Some readers will feel I am too generous with Brown and with CNN. But I am not interested in portraying them as broadly "dissident" or as on the political Left. I am simply interested in calling things as I see them and giving credit where credit is due. Anyone who wants a contrast to Brown's performance is free to watch the work of Fox News anchor, Jon Scott, on September 11, 2001. The same confidence that allowed him to name Bin Laden as a suspect 42 seconds after the impact of the second plane allowed him to proclaim the structural failure hypothesis directly after the destruction of the South Tower. He persisted even when his reporters in the field clearly spoke of explosions.

David Lee Miller reported:

we heard a very loud blast, an explosion. We looked up, and the building literally began to collapse before us " ( 10:01:17 a.m. )

Rick Leventhal said:

The FBI is here, as you can see. They had roped this area off. They were taking photographs and securing this area just prior to that huge explosion that we all heard and felt." ( 10:06:39 a.m. )

News anchor Scott was troubled by none of this. He overrode, silenced and patronized Fox reporters. At no point did he even acknowledge the existence of a second reasonable hypothesis for the Trade Center destruction.

Of course, it is true that by the end of the day of September 11, 2001 CNN and Fox were singing from the same hymnbook. But I believe we ought to acknowledge Brown's brief, shining moment and consider what might happen if journalists found their courage and trusted their senses and their minds.

Sources:

Same-day coverage by CNN and Fox for September 11, 2001 has been sporadically available on the Internet. My notes are from my own previously downloaded files. Times should be accurate to within two seconds.

Notes

*Many works have appeared over the years refuting the account of the destruction of the World Trade Center Towers released by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). But special note should be taken of two sources:

Ted Walter, Beyond Misinformation: What Science Says About the Destruction of World Trade Center Buildings 1, 2, and 7. Architects & Engineers for 9/11 Truth, 2015.

https://www.ae911truth.org/images/BeyondMisinfo/Beyond-Misinformation-2015.pdf

Lawyers' Committee for 9/11 Inquiry, First Amended Grand Jury Petition, filed July 30, 2018 at the office of the U.S. Attorney in Manhattan, N.Y.

https://www.lawyerscommitteefor9-11inquiry.org/lc-doj-first-amended-grand-jury-petition/

In addition, a recent academic report on the related destruction of World Trade Center 7 destroys whatever confidence we might have in NIST's accounts:

J. L. Hulsey, et al, A Structural Reevaluation of the Collapse of World Trade Center 7 (draft), University of Alaska Fairbanks, Sept. 2019.

https://salsa3.salsalabs.com/o/50694/signup_page/uaf-wtc7-draft-report?killorg=True&loggedOut=True Facebook Twitter Reddit Pinterest WhatsApp vKontakte Email

Graeme MacQueen is the former director of the Centre for Peace Studies at McMaster University. He is a member of the 9/11 Consensus Panel , former co-editor of the Journal of 9/11 Studies , and an organizer of the 2011 Toronto Hearings, the results of which have been published in book form as The 9/11 Toronto Report. He is a Research Associate of the Centre for Research on Globalization (CRG) Filed under: 9/11 , 911 general analysis , featured , latest Tagged with: Aaron Brown , CNN , Graeme MacQueen by Graeme MacQueen


Doctortrinate

Fact – the WTC's were "shown" to eat the "missing" aeroplanes -- Whole !!!

MASTER OF UNIVE
The Central Intelligence Agency planned the WTC destruction & Controlled Demolition well in advance of their actual detonation of the buildings via remote control of the planted explosives & USA Military Grade Nanothermite method of cutting all the support beams that were made of low carbon steel. Photographic evidence can still be found on Google.

George W. Bush is a mass murderer that was put in place pre-911 via wholly suspicious vote counts in Florida where he actually lost the vote.

Media & punditry should just call a spade a spade and write that the CIA cooked this up as a false flag to usurp voter authority and usher in a police state that will line the pockets & feather their collective nests much better than the democratic process would.

George W. Bush & the Neocons are public enemy #1.

MOU

Michael McNulty
I think because 9/11 was in the pipeline the Republicans had Clinton impeached in an attempt to ruin the Democrat chances in November 2000. They needed to be in the White House to turn back the jet fighters on the day, but more importantly the security agencies under a Gore White House would have uncovered the treasonous plot. When they failed to stop the Democrats and Gore won they actually had to go in and steal it which they were able to do in Florida. Otherwise they'd have all faced capital treason charges.
Editor
Do we think this divides along party lines? The evidence doesn't suggest it
Tim Jenkins
Perhaps somebody could get this chump of the day, Destefano, to give an opinion now today; with the benefit of hindsight & a greater awareness of the physical scientific impossibilities of what he stated on that day, just perhaps, he would like to re-consider his inept scientific comprehension of both physics & chemistry ?

And if gets all 'stroppy' & arrogant, invite him to defend his indefensible opinions, in front of a panel of real independent scientists & demolition experts, on a Livestream; just like we had to endure his BS on that day, we may at least have the chance to avenge, once & for all, to see clearly whose argumentation and expertise stands up to scientific & public scrutiny, for the record.

My money would be on Destefano now avoiding ANY further public discussion & confrontation, simply because his attempts to lie, once again, would be too blatantly obvious, not just to the panel questioning his judgement & knowledge on that day, along with his pathetic powers of suggestion,
but to all viewers
Therefore, invite him and watch him dodge all relevant issues, as a form of ridicule !

Maggie
Proof if we needed it?

https://www.brasscheck.com/video/9-11-wiring-the-buildings/?omhide=true

RobG
The 11th of September 2001 is many things, but mostly it is a blatant example of how easy it is to fool the public, and also a blatant example of how we are ruled by criminal psychopaths.

It's really that simple.

Ieuan Einion
9/11 if it is anything is the date on which Salvador Allende's democratically elected government in Chile was overthrown by US imperialism and 30,000 died as a result. One of the main squares in the departmental capital where I live in France is the Place Salvador Allende; there are no squares named after George Bush or Tony Blair and there never will be.
Tim Jenkins
Give it time, Ieuan: we 'received' a statue of John McCain in Sofia, last year, and this tearful year of extreme poverty in Bulgaria, (engineered by NATZO), the Bulgarians received a monumental statue of iconic ironic 'value', (as central banking financial collapse looms) of Woodrow Wilson talk about marketing & selling yourself and your wholly mathematically inept ways & means; the USA knows no bounds & ground zero scientific knowledge, let alone mathematical equations, it appears
they debase any Learning from mistakes, at all costs.

[Sep 15, 2019] How the UK Security Services neutralised the country s leading liberal newspaper by Matt Kennard and Mark Curtis

Highly recommended!
Essentially neoliberal MSM were hijacked. Which was easy to do. The current anti-Russian campaign is conducted under the direct guidance of MI6 and similar agencies
Notable quotes:
"... committee minutes note the secretary saying: "The Guardian was obliged to seek advice under the terms of the DA notice code." The minutes add: "This failure to seek advice was a key source of concern and considerable efforts had been made to address it." ..."
"... These "considerable efforts" included a D-Notice sent out by the committee on 7 June 2013 – the day after The Guardian published the first documents – to all major UK media editors, saying they should refrain from publishing information that would "jeopardise both national security and possibly UK personnel". It was marked "private and confidential: not for publication, broadcast or use on social media". ..."
"... "The FT [Financial Times] and The Times did not mention it [the initial Snowden revelations] and the Telegraph published only a short". It continued by noting that only The Independent "followed up the substantive allegations". It added, "The BBC has also chosen to largely ignore the story." ..."
"... The British security services had carried out more than a "symbolic act". It was both a show of strength and a clear threat. The Guardian was then the only major newspaper that could be relied upon by whistleblowers in the US and British security bodies to receive and cover their exposures, a situation which posed a challenge to security agencies. ..."
"... The increasingly aggressive overtures made to The Guardian worked. The committee chair noted that after GCHQ had overseen the smashing up of the newspaper's laptops "engagement with The Guardian had continued to strengthen". ..."
"... But the most important part of this charm and threat offensive was getting The Guardian to agree to take a seat on the D-Notice Committee itself. The committee minutes are explicit on this, noting that "the process had culminated by [sic] the appointment of Paul Johnson (deputy editor Guardian News and Media) as a DPBAC [i.e. D-Notice Committee] member". ..."
"... The Guardian's deputy editor went directly from the corporation's basement with an angle-grinder to sitting on the D-Notice Committee alongside the security service officials who had tried to stop his paper publishing. ..."
"... In November 2016, The Guardian published an unprecedented "exclusive" with Andrew Parker, the head of MI5, Britain's domestic security service. The article noted that this was the "first newspaper interview given by an incumbent MI5 chief in the service's 107-year history". It was co-written by deputy editor Paul Johnson, who had never written about the security services before and who was still sitting on the D-Notice Committee. This was not mentioned in the article. ..."
"... The MI5 chief was given copious space to make claims about the national security threat posed by an "increasingly aggressive" Russia. Johnson and his co-author noted, "Parker said he was talking to The Guardian rather than any other newspaper despite the publication of the Snowden files." ..."
"... Just two weeks before the interview with MI6's chief was published, The Guardian itself reported on the high court stating that it would "hear an application for a judicial review of the Crown Prosecution Service's decision not to charge MI6's former counterterrorism director, Sir Mark Allen, over the abduction of Abdel Hakim Belhaj and his pregnant wife who were transferred to Libya in a joint CIA-MI6 operation in 2004". ..."
"... The security services were probably feeding The Guardian these "exclusives" as part of the process of bringing it onside and neutralising the only independent newspaper with the resources to receive and cover a leak such as Snowden's. They were possibly acting to prevent any revelations of this kind happening again. ..."
"... The Guardian's coverage of anti-Semitism in Labour has been suspiciously extensive, compared to the known extent of the problem in the party, and its focus on Corbyn personally suggests that the issue is being used politically. While anti-Semitism does exist in the Labour Party, evidence suggests it is at relatively low levels. Since September 2015, when Corbyn became Labour leader, 0.06% of the Labour membership has been investigated for anti-Semitic comments or posts. In 2016, an independent inquiry commissioned by Labour concluded that the party "is not overrun by anti-Semitism, Islamophobia or other forms of racism. Further, it is the party that initiated every single United Kingdom race equality law." ..."
"... A former Guardian journalist similarly told us: "It is significant that exclusive stories recently about British collusion in torture and policy towards the interrogation of terror suspects and other detainees have been passed to other papers including The Times rather than The Guardian." ..."
"... The Guardian had gone in six short years from being the natural outlet to place stories exposing wrongdoing by the security state to a platform trusted by the security state to amplify its information operations. A once relatively independent media platform has been largely neutralised by UK security services fearful of being exposed further. Which begs the question: where does the next Snowden go? DM ..."
Jan 01, 2019 | dailymaverick.co.za

The Guardian, Britain's leading liberal newspaper with a global reputation for independent and critical journalism, has been successfully targeted by security agencies to neutralise its adversarial reporting of the 'security state', according to newly released documents and evidence from former and current Guardian journalists.

The UK security services targeted The Guardian after the newspaper started publishing the contents of secret US government documents leaked by National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden in June 2013.

Snowden's bombshell revelations continued for months and were the largest-ever leak of classified material covering the NSA and its UK equivalent, the Government Communications Headquarters. They revealed programmes of mass surveillance operated by both agencies.

According to minutes of meetings of the UK's Defence and Security Media Advisory Committee, the revelations caused alarm in the British security services and Ministry of Defence.

" This event was very concerning because at the outset The Guardian avoided engaging with the [committee] before publishing the first tranche of information," state minutes of a 7 November 2013 meeting at the MOD.

The DSMA Committee, more commonly known as the D-Notice Committee, is run by the MOD, where it meets every six months. A small number of journalists are also invited to sit on the committee. Its stated purpose is to "prevent inadvertent public disclosure of information that would compromise UK military and intelligence operations". It can issue "notices" to the media to encourage them not to publish certain information.

The committee is currently chaired by the MOD's director-general of security policy Dominic Wilson, who was previously director of security and intelligence in the British Cabinet Office. Its secretary is Brigadier Geoffrey Dodds OBE, who describes himself as an "accomplished, senior ex-military commander with extensive experience of operational level leadership".

The D-Notice system describes itself as voluntary , placing no obligations on the media to comply with any notice issued. This means there should have been no need for the Guardian to consult the MOD before publishing the Snowden documents.

Yet committee minutes note the secretary saying: "The Guardian was obliged to seek advice under the terms of the DA notice code." The minutes add: "This failure to seek advice was a key source of concern and considerable efforts had been made to address it."

' Considerable efforts'

These "considerable efforts" included a D-Notice sent out by the committee on 7 June 2013 – the day after The Guardian published the first documents – to all major UK media editors, saying they should refrain from publishing information that would "jeopardise both national security and possibly UK personnel". It was marked "private and confidential: not for publication, broadcast or use on social media".

Clearly the committee did not want its issuing of the notice to be publicised, and it was nearly successful. Only the right-wing blog Guido Fawkes made it public.

At the time, according to the committee minutes , the "intelligence agencies in particular had continued to ask for more advisories [i.e. D-Notices] to be sent out". Such D-Notices were clearly seen by the intelligence services not so much as a tool to advise the media but rather a way to threaten it not to publish further Snowden revelations.

One night, amidst the first Snowden stories being published, the D-Notice Committee's then-secretary Air Vice-Marshal Andrew Vallance personally called Alan Rusbridger, then editor of The Guardian. Vallance "made clear his concern that The Guardian had failed to consult him in advance before telling the world", according to a Guardian journalist who interviewed Rusbridger.

Later in the year, Prime Minister David Cameron again used the D-Notice system as a threat to the media.

" I don't want to have to use injunctions or D-Notices or the other tougher measures," he said in a statement to MPs. "I think it's much better to appeal to newspapers' sense of social responsibility. But if they don't demonstrate some social responsibility it would be very difficult for government to stand back and not to act."

The threats worked. The Press Gazette reported at the time that "The FT [Financial Times] and The Times did not mention it [the initial Snowden revelations] and the Telegraph published only a short". It continued by noting that only The Independent "followed up the substantive allegations". It added, "The BBC has also chosen to largely ignore the story."

The Guardian, however, remained uncowed.

According to the committee minutes , the fact The Guardian would not stop publishing "undoubtedly raised questions in some minds about the system's future usefulness". If the D-Notice system could not prevent The Guardian publishing GCHQ's most sensitive secrets, what was it good for?

It was time to rein in The Guardian and make sure this never happened again.

GCHQ and laptops

The security services ratcheted up their "considerable efforts" to deal with the exposures. On 20 July 2013, GCHQ officials entered The Guardian's offices at King's Cross in London, six weeks after the first Snowden-related article had been published. At the request of the government and security services, Guardian deputy editor Paul Johnson, along with two others, spent three hours destroying the laptops containing the Snowden documents.

The Guardian staffers, according to one of the newspaper's reporters, brought "angle-grinders, dremels – drills with revolving bits – and masks". The reporter added, "The spy agency provided one piece of hi-tech equipment, a 'degausser', which destroys magnetic fields and erases data."

Johnson claims that the destruction of the computers was "purely a symbolic act", adding that "the government and GCHQ knew, because we had told them, that the material had been taken to the US to be shared with the New York Times. The reporting would go on. The episode hadn't changed anything."

Yet the episode did change something. As the D-Notice Committee minutes for November 2013 outlined: "Towards the end of July [as the computers were being destroyed], The Guardian had begun to seek and accept D-Notice advice not to publish certain highly sensitive details and since then the dialogue [with the committee] had been reasonable and improving."

The British security services had carried out more than a "symbolic act". It was both a show of strength and a clear threat. The Guardian was then the only major newspaper that could be relied upon by whistleblowers in the US and British security bodies to receive and cover their exposures, a situation which posed a challenge to security agencies.

The increasingly aggressive overtures made to The Guardian worked. The committee chair noted that after GCHQ had overseen the smashing up of the newspaper's laptops "engagement with The Guardian had continued to strengthen".

Moreover, he added , there were now "regular dialogues between the secretary and deputy secretaries and Guardian journalists". Rusbridger later testified to the Home Affairs Committee that Air Vice-Marshal Vallance of the D-Notice committee and himself "collaborated" in the aftermath of the Snowden affair and that Vallance had even "been at The Guardian offices to talk to all our reporters".

But the most important part of this charm and threat offensive was getting The Guardian to agree to take a seat on the D-Notice Committee itself. The committee minutes are explicit on this, noting that "the process had culminated by [sic] the appointment of Paul Johnson (deputy editor Guardian News and Media) as a DPBAC [i.e. D-Notice Committee] member".

At some point in 2013 or early 2014, Johnson – the same deputy editor who had smashed up his newspaper's computers under the watchful gaze of British intelligence agents – was approached to take up a seat on the committee. Johnson attended his first meeting in May 2014 and was to remain on it until October 2018 .

The Guardian's deputy editor went directly from the corporation's basement with an angle-grinder to sitting on the D-Notice Committee alongside the security service officials who had tried to stop his paper publishing.

A new editor

Guardian editor Alan Rusbridger withstood intense pressure not to publish some of the Snowden revelations but agreed to Johnson taking a seat on the D-Notice Committee as a tactical sop to the security services. Throughout his tenure, The Guardian continued to publish some stories critical of the security services.

But in March 2015, the situation changed when the Guardian appointed a new editor, Katharine Viner, who had less experience than Rusbridger of dealing with the security services. Viner had started out on fashion and entertainment magazine Cosmopolitan and had no history in national security reporting. According to insiders, she showed much less leadership during the Snowden affair than Janine Gibson in the US (Gibson was another candidate to be Rusbridger's successor).

Viner was then editor-in-chief of Guardian Australia, which was launched just two weeks before the first Snowden revelations were published. Australia and New Zealand comprise two-fifths of the so-called "Five Eyes" surveillance alliance exposed by Snowden.

This was an opportunity for the security services. It appears that their seduction began the following year.

In November 2016, The Guardian published an unprecedented "exclusive" with Andrew Parker, the head of MI5, Britain's domestic security service. The article noted that this was the "first newspaper interview given by an incumbent MI5 chief in the service's 107-year history". It was co-written by deputy editor Paul Johnson, who had never written about the security services before and who was still sitting on the D-Notice Committee. This was not mentioned in the article.

The MI5 chief was given copious space to make claims about the national security threat posed by an "increasingly aggressive" Russia. Johnson and his co-author noted, "Parker said he was talking to The Guardian rather than any other newspaper despite the publication of the Snowden files."

Parker told the two reporters, "We recognise that in a changing world we have to change too. We have a responsibility to talk about our work and explain it."

Four months after the MI5 interview, in March 2017, the Guardian published another unprecedented "exclusive", this time with Alex Younger, the sitting chief of MI6, Britain's external intelligence agency. This exclusive was awarded by the Secret Intelligence Service to The Guardian's investigations editor, Nick Hopkins, who had been appointed 14 months previously.

The interview was the first Younger had given to a national newspaper and was again softball. Titled "MI6 returns to 'tapping up' in an effort to recruit black and Asian officers", it focused almost entirely on the intelligence service's stated desire to recruit from ethnic minority communities.

" Simply, we have to attract the best of modern Britain," Younger told Hopkins. "Every community from every part of Britain should feel they have what it takes, no matter what their background or status."

Just two weeks before the interview with MI6's chief was published, The Guardian itself reported on the high court stating that it would "hear an application for a judicial review of the Crown Prosecution Service's decision not to charge MI6's former counterterrorism director, Sir Mark Allen, over the abduction of Abdel Hakim Belhaj and his pregnant wife who were transferred to Libya in a joint CIA-MI6 operation in 2004".

None of this featured in The Guardian article, which did, however, cover discussions of whether the James Bond actor Daniel Craig would qualify for the intelligence service. "He would not get into MI6," Younger told Hopkins.

More recently, in August 2019, The Guardian was awarded yet another exclusive, this time with Metropolitan police assistant commissioner Neil Basu, Britain's most senior counter-terrorism officer. This was Basu's " first major interview since taking up his post" the previous year and resulted in a three-part series of articles, one of which was entitled "Met police examine Vladimir Putin's role in Salisbury attack".

The security services were probably feeding The Guardian these "exclusives" as part of the process of bringing it onside and neutralising the only independent newspaper with the resources to receive and cover a leak such as Snowden's. They were possibly acting to prevent any revelations of this kind happening again.

What, if any, private conversations have taken place between Viner and the security services during her tenure as editor are not known. But in 2018, when Paul Johnson eventually left the D-Notice Committee, its chair, the MOD's Dominic Wilson, praised Johnson who, he said, had been "instrumental in re-establishing links with The Guardian".

Decline in critical reporting

Amidst these spoon-fed intelligence exclusives, Viner also oversaw the breakup of The Guardian's celebrated investigative team, whose muck-racking journalists were told to apply for other jobs outside of investigations.

One well-placed source told the Press Gazette at the time that journalists on the investigations team "have not felt backed by senior editors over the last year", and that "some also feel the company has become more risk-averse in the same period".

In the period since Snowden, The Guardian has lost many of its top investigative reporters who had covered national security issues, notably Shiv Malik, Nick Davies, David Leigh, Richard Norton-Taylor, Ewen MacAskill and Ian Cobain. The few journalists who were replaced were succeeded by less experienced reporters with apparently less commitment to exposing the security state. The current defence and security editor, Dan Sabbagh, started at The Guardian as head of media and technology and has no history of covering national security.

" It seems they've got rid of everyone who seemed to cover the security services and military in an adversarial way," one current Guardian journalist told us.

Indeed, during the last two years of Rusbridger's editorship, The Guardian published about 110 articles per year tagged as MI6 on its website. Since Viner took over, the average per year has halved and is decreasing year by year.

" Effective scrutiny of the security and intelligence agencies -- epitomised by the Snowden scoops but also many other stories -- appears to have been abandoned," a former Guardian journalist told us. The former reporter added that, in recent years, it "sometimes seems The Guardian is worried about upsetting the spooks."

A second former Guardian journalist added: "The Guardian no longer seems to have such a challenging relationship with the intelligence services, and is perhaps seeking to mend fences since Snowden. This is concerning, because spooks are always manipulative and not always to be trusted."

While some articles critical of the security services still do appear in the paper, its "scoops" increasingly focus on issues more acceptable to them. Since the Snowden affair, The Guardian does not appear to have published any articles based on an intelligence or security services source that was not officially sanctioned to speak.

The Guardian has, by contrast, published a steady stream of exclusives on the major official enemy of the security services, Russia, exposing Putin, his friends and the work of its intelligence services and military.

In the Panama Papers leak in April 2016, which revealed how companies and individuals around the world were using an offshore law firm to avoid paying tax, The Guardian's front-page launch scoop was authored by Luke Harding, who has received many security service tips focused on the "Russia threat", and was titled "Revealed: the $2bn offshore trail that leads to Vladimir Putin".

Three sentences into the piece, however, Harding notes that "the president's name does not appear in any of the records" although he insists that "the data reveals a pattern – his friends have earned millions from deals that seemingly could not have been secured without his patronage".

There was a much bigger story in the Panama Papers which The Guardian chose to downplay by leaving it to the following day. This concerned the father of the then Prime Minister, David Cameron, who "ran an offshore fund that avoided ever having to pay tax in Britain by hiring a small army of Bahamas residents – including a part-time bishop – to sign its paperwork".

We understand there was some argument between journalists about not leading with the Cameron story as the launch splash. Putin's friends were eventually deemed more important than the Prime Minister of the country where the paper published.

Getting Julian Assange

The Guardian also appears to have been engaged in a campaign against the WikiLeaks publisher Julian Assange, who had been a collaborator during the early WikiLeaks revelations in 2010.

One 2017 story came from investigative reporter Carole Cadwalladr, who writes for The Guardian's sister paper The Observer, titled "When Nigel Farage met Julian Assange". This concerned the visit of former UKIP leader Nigel Farage to the Ecuadorian embassy in March 2017, organised by the radio station LBC, for whom Farage worked as a presenter. Farage's producer at LBC accompanied Farage at the meeting, but this was not mentioned by Cadwalladr.

Rather, she posited that this meeting was "potentially a channel of communication" between WikiLeaks, Farage and Donald Trump, who were all said to be closely linked to Russia, adding that these actors were in a "political alignment" and that " WikiLeaks is, in many ways, the swirling vortex at the centre of everything".

Yet Cadwalladr's one official on-the-record source for this speculation was a "highly placed contact with links to US intelligence", who told her, "When the heat is turned up and all electronic communication, you have to assume, is being intensely monitored, then those are the times when intelligence communication falls back on human couriers. Where you have individuals passing information in ways and places that cannot be monitored."

It seems likely this was innuendo being fed to The Observer by an intelligence-linked individual to promote disinformation to undermine Assange.

In 2018, however, The Guardian's attempted vilification of Assange was significantly stepped up. A new string of articles began on 18 May 2018 with one alleging Assange's "long-standing relationship with RT", the Russian state broadcaster. The series, which has been closely documented elsewhere, lasted for several months, consistently alleging with little or the most minimal circumstantial evidence that Assange had ties to Russia or the Kremlin.

One story, co-authored again by Luke Harding, claimed that "Russian diplomats held secret talks in London with people close to Julian Assange to assess whether they could help him flee the UK, The Guardian has learned". The former consul in the Ecuadorian embassy in London at this time, Fidel Narvaez, vigorously denies the existence of any such "escape plot" involving Russia and is involved in a complaint process with The Guardian for insinuating he coordinated such a plot.

This apparent mini-campaign ran until November 2018, culminating in a front-page splash , based on anonymous sources, claiming that Assange had three secret meetings at the Ecuadorian embassy with Trump's former campaign manager Paul Manafort.

This "scoop" failed all tests of journalistic credibility since it would have been impossible for anyone to have entered the highly secured Ecuadorian embassy three times with no proof. WikiLeaks and others have strongly argued that the story was manufactured and it is telling that The Guardian has since failed to refer to it in its subsequent articles on the Assange case. The Guardian, however, has still not retracted or apologised for the story which remains on its website.

The "exclusive" appeared just two weeks after Paul Johnson had been congratulated for "re-establishing links" between The Guardian and the security services.

The string of Guardian articles, along with the vilification and smear stories about Assange elsewhere in the British media, helped create the conditions for a deal between Ecuador, the UK and the US to expel Assange from the embassy in April. Assange now sits in Belmarsh maximum-security prison where he faces extradition to the US, and life in prison there, on charges under the Espionage Act.

Acting for the establishment

Another major focus of The Guardian's energies under Viner's editorship has been to attack the leader of the UK Labour Party, Jeremy Corbyn.

The context is that Corbyn appears to have recently been a target of the security services. In 2015, soon after he was elected Labour leader, the Sunday Times reported a serving general warning that "there would be a direct challenge from the army and mass resignations if Corbyn became prime minister". The source told the newspaper: "The Army just wouldn't stand for it. The general staff would not allow a prime minister to jeopardise the security of this country and I think people would use whatever means possible, fair or foul, to prevent that."

On 20 May 2017, a little over two weeks before the 2017 General Election, the Daily Telegraph was fed the story that "MI5 opened a file on Jeremy Corbyn amid concerns over his links to the IRA". It formed part of a Telegraph investigation claiming to reveal "Mr Corbyn's full links to the IRA" and was sourced to an individual "close to" the MI5 investigation, who said "a file had been opened on him by the early nineties".

The Metropolitan Police Special Branch was also said to be monitoring Corbyn in the same period.

Then, on the very eve of the General Election, the Telegraph gave space to an article from Sir Richard Dearlove, the former director of MI6, under a headline: "Jeremy Corbyn is a danger to this nation. At MI6, which I once led, he wouldn't clear the security vetting."

Further, in September 2018, two anonymous senior government sources told The Times that Corbyn had been "summoned" for a "'facts of life' talk on terror" by MI5 chief Andrew Parker.

Just two weeks after news of this private meeting was leaked by the government, the Daily Mail reported another leak, this time revealing that "Jeremy Corbyn's most influential House of Commons adviser has been barred from entering Ukraine on the grounds that he is a national security threat because of his alleged links to Vladimir Putin's 'global propaganda network'."

The article concerned Andrew Murray, who had been working in Corbyn's office for a year but had still not received a security pass to enter the UK parliament. The Mail reported, based on what it called "a senior parliamentary source", that Murray's application had encountered "vetting problems".

Murray later heavily suggested that the security services had leaked the story to the Mail. "Call me sceptical if you must, but I do not see journalistic enterprise behind the Mail's sudden capacity to tease obscure information out of the [Ukrainian security service]," he wrote in the New Statesman. He added, "Someone else is doing the hard work – possibly someone being paid by the taxpayer. I doubt if their job description is preventing the election of a Corbyn government, but who knows?"

Murray told us he was approached by the New Statesman after the story about him being banned from Ukraine was leaked. "However," he added, "I wouldn't dream of suggesting anything like that to The Guardian, since I do not know any journalists still working there who I could trust."

The Guardian itself has run a remarkable number of news and comment articles criticising Corbyn since he was elected in 2015 and the paper's clearly hostile stance has been widely noted .

Given its appeal to traditional Labour supporters, the paper has probably done more to undermine Corbyn than any other. In particular, its massive coverage of alleged widespread anti-Semitism in the Labour Party has helped to disparage Corbyn more than other smears carried in the media.

The Guardian and The Observer have published hundreds of articles on "Labour anti-Semitism" and, since the beginning of this year, carried over 50 such articles with headlines clearly negative to Corbyn. Typical headlines have included " The Observer view: Labour leadership is complicit in anti-Semitism ", " Jeremy Corbyn is either blind to anti-Semitism – or he just doesn't care ", and " Labour's anti-Semitism problem is institutional. It needs investigation ".

The Guardian's coverage of anti-Semitism in Labour has been suspiciously extensive, compared to the known extent of the problem in the party, and its focus on Corbyn personally suggests that the issue is being used politically. While anti-Semitism does exist in the Labour Party, evidence suggests it is at relatively low levels. Since September 2015, when Corbyn became Labour leader, 0.06% of the Labour membership has been investigated for anti-Semitic comments or posts. In 2016, an independent inquiry commissioned by Labour concluded that the party "is not overrun by anti-Semitism, Islamophobia or other forms of racism. Further, it is the party that initiated every single United Kingdom race equality law."

Analysis of two YouGov surveys, conducted in 2015 and 2017, shows that anti-Semitic views held by Labour voters declined substantially in the first two years of Corbyn's tenure and that such views were significantly more common among Conservative voters.

Despite this, since January 2016, The Guardian has published 1,215 stories mentioning Labour and anti-Semitism, an average of around one per day, according to a search on Factiva, the database of newspaper articles. In the same period, The Guardian published just 194 articles mentioning the Conservative Party's much more serious problem with Islamophobia. A YouGov poll in 2019, for example, found that nearly half of the Tory Party membership would prefer not to have a Muslim prime minister.

At the same time, some stories which paint Corbyn's critics in a negative light have been suppressed by The Guardian. According to someone with knowledge of the matter, The Guardian declined to publish the results of a months-long critical investigation by one of its reporters into a prominent anti-Corbyn Labour MP, citing only vague legal issues.

In July 2016, one of this article's authors emailed a Guardian editor asking if he could pitch an investigation about the first attempt by the right-wing of the Labour Party to remove Corbyn, informing The Guardian of very good inside sources on those behind the attempt and their real plans. The approach was rejected as being of no interest before a pitch was even sent.

A reliable publication?

On 20 May 2019, The Times newspaper reported on a Freedom of Information request made by the Rendition Project, a group of academic experts working on torture and rendition issues, which showed that the MOD had been "developing a secret policy on torture that allows ministers to sign off intelligence-sharing that could lead to the abuse of detainees".

This might traditionally have been a Guardian story, not something for the Rupert Murdoch-owned Times. According to one civil society source, however, many groups working in this field no longer trust The Guardian.

A former Guardian journalist similarly told us: "It is significant that exclusive stories recently about British collusion in torture and policy towards the interrogation of terror suspects and other detainees have been passed to other papers including The Times rather than The Guardian."

The Times published its scoop under a strong headline , "Torture: Britain breaks law in Ministry of Defence secret policy". However, before the article was published, the MOD fed The Guardian the same documents The Times were about to splash with, believing it could soften the impact of the revelations by telling its side of the story.

The Guardian posted its own article just before The Times, with a headline that would have pleased the government: "MoD says revised torture guidance does not lower standards".

Its lead paragraph was a simple summary of the MOD's position: "The Ministry of Defence has insisted that newly emerged departmental guidance on the sharing of intelligence derived from torture with allies, remains in line with practices agreed in the aftermath of a series of scandals following the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq." However, an inspection of the documents showed this was clearly disinformation.

The Guardian had gone in six short years from being the natural outlet to place stories exposing wrongdoing by the security state to a platform trusted by the security state to amplify its information operations. A once relatively independent media platform has been largely neutralised by UK security services fearful of being exposed further. Which begs the question: where does the next Snowden go? DM

The Guardian did not respond to a request for comment.

Daily Maverick will formally launch Declassified – a new UK-focused investigation and analysis organisation run by the authors of this article – in November 2019.

Matt Kennard is an investigative journalist and co-founder of Declassified . He was previously director of the Centre for Investigative Journalism in London, and before that a reporter for the Financial Times in the US and UK. He is the author of two books, Irregular Army and The Racket .

Mark Curtis is a leading UK foreign policy analyst, journalist and the author of six books including Web of Deceit: Britain's Real Role in the World and Secret Affairs: Britain's Collusion with Radical Islam .

[Sep 15, 2019] Trump's new world disorder: competitive, chaotic, conflicted by

The key to understanding the c
The collapse of neoliberalism naturally lead to the collapse of the US influence over the globe. and to the treats to the dollar as the world reserve currency. That's why the US foreign policy became so aggressive and violent. Neocons want to fight for the world hegemony to the last American.
Notable quotes:
"... US foreign policy is ever more unstable and confrontational ..."
"... Bolton's brutal defenestration has raised hopes that Trump, who worries that voters may view him as a warmonger, may begin to moderate some of his more confrontational international policies. As the 2020 election looms, he is desperate for a big foreign policy peace-making success. And, in Trump world, winning matters more than ideology, principles or personnel. ..."
"... Since taking office in January 2017, Trump has not merely broken with diplomatic and geopolitical convention. He has taken a wrecking ball to venerated alliances, multilateral cooperation and the postwar international rules-based order. ..."
"... The resulting new world disorder – to adapt George HW Bush's famous 1991 phrase – will be hard to put right. Like its creator, Trump world is unstable, unpredictable and threatening. Trump has been called America's first rogue president. Whether or not he wins a second term, this Trumpian era of epic disruption, the very worst form of American exceptionalism, is already deeply entrenched. ..."
"... driven by a chronic desire for re-election, Trump's behaviour could become more, not less, confrontational during his remaining time in office, suggested Eliot Cohen, professor of strategic studies at Johns Hopkins university. ..."
"... "The president has proved himself to be what many critics have long accused him of being: belligerent, bullying, impatient, irresponsible, intellectually lazy, short-tempered and self-obsessed," Cohen wrote in Foreign Affairs journal . "Remarkably, however, those shortcomings have not yet translated into obvious disaster. But [that] should not distract from a building crisis of US foreign policy." ..."
"... This pending crisis stems from Trump's crudely Manichaean division of the world into two camps: adversaries/competitors and supporters/customers. A man with few close confidants, Trump has real trouble distinguishing between allies and enemies, friends and foes, and often confuses the two. In Trump world, old rules don't apply. Alliances are optional. Loyalty is weakness. And trust is fungible. ..."
"... The crunch came last weekend when a bizarre, secret summit with Taliban chiefs at Camp David was cancelled . It was classic Trump. He wanted quick 'n' easy, primetime credit for a dramatic peace deal, pushed ahead blindly, then changed his mind at the last minute. Furious over a debacle of his own making, he turned his wrath on others, notably Bolton – who, ironically, had opposed the summit all along. ..."
"... With Trump's blessing, Israel is enmeshed in escalating, multi-fronted armed confrontation with Iran and its allies in Iraq, Lebanon and Syria. Add to this recent violence in the Gulf, the disastrous Trump-backed, Saudi-led war in Yemen, mayhem in Syria's Idlib province, border friction with Turkey, and Islamic State resurgence in northern Iraq, and a region-wide explosion looks ever more likely. ..."
"... "the bipartisan consensus forged in the 1990s – in which the US towered over the world and, at low cost, sought to remake it in America's image – has failed and cannot be revived", ..."
Sep 14, 2019 | www.theguardian.com

With John Bolton dismissed, Taliban peace talks a fiasco and a trade war with China, US foreign policy is ever more unstable and confrontational

It was by all accounts, a furious row. Donald Trump was talking about relaxing sanctions on Iran and holding a summit with its president, Hassan Rouhani, at this month's UN general assembly in New York. John Bolton, his hawkish national security adviser, was dead against it and forcefully rejected Trump's ideas during a tense meeting in the Oval Office on Monday.

...Bolton's brutal defenestration has raised hopes that Trump, who worries that voters may view him as a warmonger, may begin to moderate some of his more confrontational international policies. As the 2020 election looms, he is desperate for a big foreign policy peace-making success. And, in Trump world, winning matters more than ideology, principles or personnel.

The US president is now saying he is also open to a repeat meeting with North Korea's leader, Kim Jong-un, to reboot stalled nuclear disarmament talks. On another front, he has offered an olive branch to China, delaying a planned tariff increase on $250bn of Chinese goods pending renewed trade negotiations next month. Meanwhile, he says, new tariffs on European car imports could be dropped, too.

Is a genuine dove-ish shift under way? It seems improbable. Since taking office in January 2017, Trump has not merely broken with diplomatic and geopolitical convention. He has taken a wrecking ball to venerated alliances, multilateral cooperation and the postwar international rules-based order. He has cosied up to autocrats, attacked old friends and blundered into sensitive conflicts he does not fully comprehend.

The resulting new world disorder – to adapt George HW Bush's famous 1991 phrase – will be hard to put right. Like its creator, Trump world is unstable, unpredictable and threatening. Trump has been called America's first rogue president. Whether or not he wins a second term, this Trumpian era of epic disruption, the very worst form of American exceptionalism, is already deeply entrenched.

The suggestion that Trump will make nice and back off as election time nears thus elicits considerable scepticism. US analysts and commentators say the president's erratic, impulsive and egotistic personality means any shift towards conciliation may be short-lived and could quickly be reversed, Bolton or no Bolton.

Trump wanted quick 'n' easy, primetime credit for a dramatic peace deal in Afghanistan with the Taliban, pushed ahead blindly, then changed his mind at the last minute

Trump is notorious for blowing hot and cold, performing policy zigzags and suddenly changing his mind. "Regardless of who has advised Mr Trump on foreign affairs all have proved powerless before [his] zest for chaos," the New York Times noted last week .

Lacking experienced diplomatic and military advisers (he has sacked most of the good ones), surrounded by an inner circle of cynical sycophants such as secretary of state Mike Pompeo, and driven by a chronic desire for re-election, Trump's behaviour could become more, not less, confrontational during his remaining time in office, suggested Eliot Cohen, professor of strategic studies at Johns Hopkins university.

"The president has proved himself to be what many critics have long accused him of being: belligerent, bullying, impatient, irresponsible, intellectually lazy, short-tempered and self-obsessed," Cohen wrote in Foreign Affairs journal . "Remarkably, however, those shortcomings have not yet translated into obvious disaster. But [that] should not distract from a building crisis of US foreign policy."

This pending crisis stems from Trump's crudely Manichaean division of the world into two camps: adversaries/competitors and supporters/customers. A man with few close confidants, Trump has real trouble distinguishing between allies and enemies, friends and foes, and often confuses the two. In Trump world, old rules don't apply. Alliances are optional. Loyalty is weakness. And trust is fungible.

As a result, the US today finds itself at odds with much of the world to an unprecedented and dangerous degree. America, the postwar global saviour, has been widely recast as villain. Nor is this a passing phase. Trump seems to have permanently changed the way the US views the world and vice versa. Whatever follows, it will never be quite the same again.

Clues as to what he does next may be found in what he has done so far. His is a truly calamitous record, as exemplified by Afghanistan. Having vowed in 2016 to end America's longest war, he began with a troop surge, lost interest and sued for peace. A withdrawal deal proved elusive. Meanwhile, US-led forces inflicted record civilian casualties .

Facebook Twitter Pinterest The US and Israeli flags are projected on the walls of Jerusalem's Old City in May, marking the anniversary of the US embassy transfer from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. Photograph: Ahmad Gharabli/Getty

The crunch came last weekend when a bizarre, secret summit with Taliban chiefs at Camp David was cancelled . It was classic Trump. He wanted quick 'n' easy, primetime credit for a dramatic peace deal, pushed ahead blindly, then changed his mind at the last minute. Furious over a debacle of his own making, he turned his wrath on others, notably Bolton – who, ironically, had opposed the summit all along.

All sides are now vowing to step up the violence, with the insurgents aiming to disrupt this month's presidential election in Afghanistan. In short, Trump's self-glorifying Afghan reality show, of which he was the Nobel-winning star, has made matters worse. Much the same is true of his North Korea summitry, where expectations were raised, then dashed when he got cold feet in Hanoi , provoking a backlash from Pyongyang.

The current crisis over Iran's nuclear programme is almost entirely of Trump's making, sparked by his decision last year to renege on the 2015 UN-endorsed deal with Tehran. His subsequent "maximum pressure" campaign of punitive sanctions has failed to cow Iranians while alienating European allies. And it has led Iran to resume banned nuclear activities – a seriously counterproductive, entirely predictable outcome.

Trump's unconditional, unthinking support for Benjamin Netanyahu, Israel's aggressively rightwing prime minister – including tacit US backing for his proposed annexation of swathes of the occupied territories – is pushing the Palestinians back to the brink, energising Hamas and Hezbollah, and raising tensions across the region .

With Trump's blessing, Israel is enmeshed in escalating, multi-fronted armed confrontation with Iran and its allies in Iraq, Lebanon and Syria. Add to this recent violence in the Gulf, the disastrous Trump-backed, Saudi-led war in Yemen, mayhem in Syria's Idlib province, border friction with Turkey, and Islamic State resurgence in northern Iraq, and a region-wide explosion looks ever more likely.

The bipartisan consensus forged in the 1990s – in which the US towered over the world and, at low cost, sought to remake it in America's image – has failed and cannot be revived

Stephen Wertheim, historian

Yet Trump, oblivious to the point of recklessness, remains determined to unveil his absurdly unbalanced Israel-Palestine "deal of the century" after Tuesday's Israeli elections. He and his gormless son-in-law, Jared Kushner, may be the only people who don't realise their plan has a shorter life expectancy than a snowball on a hot day in Gaza.

... ... ...

...he is consistently out of line, out on his own – and out of control. This, broadly, is Trump world as it has come to exist since January 2017. And this, in a nutshell, is the intensifying foreign policy crisis of which Professor Cohen warned. The days when responsible, trustworthy, principled US international leadership could be taken for granted are gone. No vague change of tone on North Korea or Iran will by itself halt the Trump-led slide into expanding global conflict and division.

Historians such as Stephen Wertheim say change had to come. US politicians of left and right mostly agreed that "the bipartisan consensus forged in the 1990s – in which the US towered over the world and, at low cost, sought to remake it in America's image – has failed and cannot be revived", Wertheim wrote earlier this year . "But agreement ends there " he continued: "One camp holds that the US erred by coddling China and Russia, and urges a new competition against these great power rivals. The other camp, which says the US has been too belligerent and ambitious around the world, counsels restraint, not another crusade against grand enemies."

This debate among grownups over America's future place in the world will form part of next year's election contest. But before any fundamental change of direction can occur, the international community – and the US itself – must first survive another 16 months of Trump world and the wayward child-president's poll-fixated, ego-driven destructive tendencies.

Survival is not guaranteed. The immediate choice facing US friends and foes alike is stark and urgent: ignore, bypass and marginalise Trump – or actively, openly, resist him.

Here are some of the key flashpoints around the globe

United Nations

Trump is deeply hostile to the UN. It embodies the multilateralist, globalist policy approaches he most abhors – because they supposedly infringe America's sovereignty and inhibit its freedom of action. Under him, self-interested US behaviour has undermined the authority of the UN security council's authority. The US has rejected a series of international treaties and agreements, including the Paris climate change accord and the Iran nuclear deal. The UN-backed international criminal court is beyond the pale. Trump's attitude fits with his "America First" isolationism, which questions traditional ideas about America's essential global leadership role.

Germany

Trump rarely misses a chance to bash Germany, perhaps because it is Europe's most successful economy and represents the EU, which he detests. He is obsessed by German car imports, on which protectionist US tariffs will be levied this autumn. He accuses Berlin – and Europe– of piggy-backing on America by failing to pay its fair share of Nato defence costs. Special venom is reserved for Germany's chancellor, Angela Merkel, most likely because she is a woman who stands up to him . Trump recently insulted another female European leader, Denmark's Mette Frederiksen, after she refused to sell him Greenland .

Israel

Trump has made a great show of unconditional friendship towards Israel and its rightwing prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, who has skilfully maximised his White House influence. But by moving the US embassy to Jerusalem, officially condoning Israel's annexation of the Golan Heights, and withdrawing funding and other support from the Palestinians, the president has abandoned the long-standing US policy of playing honest broker in the peace process. Trump has also tried to exploit antisemitism for political advantage, accusing US Democrat Jews who oppose Netanyahu's policies of "disloyalty" to Israel.

... ... ...

[Sep 09, 2019] The Four Horsemen Cometh by Frank Lee

Notable quotes:
"... Rickards had previously worked for the CIA (possibly still does – who knows?) but now seems to be a free-wheeling business executive, writer and strategic analyst. He tends to circulate outside of the usual middle-ranking semi-elite circles preferring to consort with the less observable, higher-ranking coteries of the inner-party. Moreover, he has nothing but disdain for the run-of-the-mill talking heads to be found (in abundance) in the media and academia – the outer-party. ..."
"... History is the first casualty of media micro-second attention span. An army of pseudo-savants saturate the airways to explain that tariffs are bad, trade wars hurt growth and mercantilism are a throwback to the 17th century. These sentiments come from mainstream liberals and conservatives and tag-along journalists trained in the orthodoxy of so-called free-trade and the false if comforting belief that trade deficits are the flipside of capital surpluses. So, what is the problem? The problem is that perpetual trade deficits have put the United States on a path to a crisis of the US$."[ 1 ] ..."
"... Obama, both Bushes, and Bill Clinton were globalists, defined as those willing to trade-off or compromise US interests for the sake of a stronger global community even conservative hawks like Reagan and JFK were firmly in the globalist camp, as they relied on NATO, the UN and the IMF to pursue their cold war goals. ..."
"... LBJ's administration contrived to conduct the Vietnam War as well as an expensive social programme, simultaneously. A guns plus butter economy. (The original version of the Guns versus butter argument was given in a speech on January 17, 1936, in Nazi Germany. The then Minister of Propaganda Joseph Goebbels stated: "We can do without butter, but, despite all our love of peace, not without arms." ) ..."
"... Globally, the leading manufacturer of auto-vehicles is Volkswagen followed by Toyota. GM are 4th and Ford are 8th of ten. Hardly market leaders anymore, but Rickards apportions the blame to 'unfair practices' by foreign manufacturers and argues instead for tariffs. The same goes for other trade partners. Fact that the United States has to a large extent been deindustrialised was a political choice of its own making. ..."
"... There were a number of advantages which accrued to the dollar contingent on the ending of gold convertibility which Eichengreen listed these in his book. But the principle one was making the surplus nations of the world pay for America's wars with an unconvertible currency. Instead of being paid for in gold, or at least a gold-backed currency the world produced goods and services for a piece of green paper backed by nothing. ..."
"... This was to be expected quite simply because at bottom Rickards is a sophist much in the tradition of Protagoras, Gorgias and Thrasymachus "I say that justice is nothing other than the advantage of the stronger" [ 12 ] ..."
"... A view which Rickards would certainly endorse. Beneath the Upper Manhattan, polished chic, there resides a ruthless Cold Warrior. The further one digs into the book, the more this becomes apparent. ..."
"... Many of us are aware of the problems of the USD but few are able to so succinctly explain why and connect the dots to expose the true picture. The bottom line is that the lifespan of the USD as king is almost over ..."
"... The US has been exposed, and so well said, as a predator nation .There must be a reason why China and Russia are buying up as much gold as their economy will permit .The exchange medium used for trade since time immemorial . ..."
"... The Wall Street ethos has always been 'kill or be killed' where bears eat, and bulls eat, but pigs get slaughtered! The problem with today's market & stock valuations is that they are as hyperinflated as Real Estate Commercial & Residential sectors are which leaves no wiggle room for price discovery until there is a system wide crash that mean reverts the valuations back to a realistic price. ..."
"... All that is happening now is that Trump is trying to solve his country's intractable economic and financial problems by looting the rest of the planet. This is not a new development, but Trump is at least refreshingly honest in his public pronouncements. ..."
"... The Nazi Empire imposed tribute on its conquests in identical fashion. Send us your industrial output, agricultural produce and raw materials. In return we'll give you a big credit balance at the Reichsbank. ..."
"... The current (real) military budget is $1,134 billion, around 60% higher than the fictitious figure that is normally touted. ..."
"... Gold could form some kind of basis for exchange in a collapse setting. Other desirable barter items would be alcohol, cigarettes, basic drugs like aspirin and paracetamol, electrical batteries, fuel and similar goods. Maybe ammunition as well. Goods were priced in cigarettes in postwar Germany. ..."
"... Bismarck is normally credited with the choice between Guns and Butter. Goebbels was suggesting that Guns will bring Butter. ..."
"... The crime in all this is in the pursuit of money -- ultimately a wholly artificial concept -- we're wasting immense amounts of resources and human potential, spreading misery and despoliation all over the planet and generally behaving like really awful global citizens. We can and must do better. ..."
"... American exceptionalism, for example, takes it for granted that we in the West are good, and therefore the East must become more like us. But we are logically, and morally, obliged to look at this from the opposite perspective too: What if the Chinese take it for granted that they are good, and therefore the West must become more like them? ..."
"... American parasitism writ large over the last half century has amply signified to the entire world that 'manifest destiny' was merely a ruse to foist American hegemony onto all sovereign nations at the behest of an out-of-control American Oligopoly that was power-tripping post WW2 & drunk on the souls of the poor sots all over the entire world with their power hungry warmongering Military Industrial Complex. ..."
"... Its not "American". We just happen to be the chosen host for this part of history. Before us it was the British Empire that was top dog. ..."
"... You have made the common mistake of asserting that it is America, instead of those who govern (the USA and its pundits) that have engineered the problems you point out. ..."
"... To condense this lengthy essay: This ship is sinking. ..."
Sep 07, 2019 | off-guardian.org/

"Aftermath" is the latest addition to three previous publications by Rickards, Currency Wars (2011), The Death of Money (2014), The Road to Ruin (2016). Together, with the present offering (Aftermath, 2019), the author uses the analogy of the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse to illustrate the themes of his four books. The latest book is thematic in its approach to the events which have taken place in the world in general and the United States in particular during this period.

HIGH SOCIETY

Rickards had previously worked for the CIA (possibly still does – who knows?) but now seems to be a free-wheeling business executive, writer and strategic analyst. He tends to circulate outside of the usual middle-ranking semi-elite circles preferring to consort with the less observable, higher-ranking coteries of the inner-party. Moreover, he has nothing but disdain for the run-of-the-mill talking heads to be found (in abundance) in the media and academia – the outer-party.

His observations of this social stratum are unapologetic and caustic:

History is the first casualty of media micro-second attention span. An army of pseudo-savants saturate the airways to explain that tariffs are bad, trade wars hurt growth and mercantilism are a throwback to the 17th century. These sentiments come from mainstream liberals and conservatives and tag-along journalists trained in the orthodoxy of so-called free-trade and the false if comforting belief that trade deficits are the flipside of capital surpluses. So, what is the problem? The problem is that perpetual trade deficits have put the United States on a path to a crisis of the US$."[ 1 ]

As is apparent, his contempt is palpable.

It should be said that much of his writing and theorising is at times occasioned by a high level of sophistication, alas sadly lacking in most of his contemporaries. But for all his refinement and eloquence that doesn't stop him being, from Off Guardian's perspective (and mine), on the other side – the side of the Anglo-Zionist empire.

THE GREAT BETRAYAL

Throughout this book and previous books there runs a familiar leitmotif; a sense of betrayal by the present dominant section of the US elite. This is not by any means an unusual political phenomenon and bears comparison with the stab-in-the-back myth – a notion doing the rounds in Germany circa 1918.

It held that the German Army did not lose World War I on the battlefield but it was 'traitors' on the home front, especially the traitorous republicans who overthrew the Hohenzollern monarchy in the German Revolution of 1918–19.

This precedent loosely corresponds to Rickards' belief in the perfidy of the current leadership of the US and his vitriol is directed against this globalist faction who are firmly ensconced in both Democrat and Republican parties and whom, he argues, have sold the pass in terms of America's strategic interests. He writes:

Obama, both Bushes, and Bill Clinton were globalists, defined as those willing to trade-off or compromise US interests for the sake of a stronger global community even conservative hawks like Reagan and JFK were firmly in the globalist camp, as they relied on NATO, the UN and the IMF to pursue their cold war goals.

However, all was not lost. As a result of

the Presidential election of 2016 when Donald Trump was sworn in on 17 January 2017 as the strongest nationalist since Theodore Roosevelt. For the first time in 100 years a committed nationalist was sitting in the Oval Office." [ 2 ]

The event was obviously political grist to Rickards' mill.

However, precisely how this liberation of the US from the domestic globalists' stranglehold was to be brought about wasn't made clear, and in fact is barely touched upon by Rickards.

Trump, for all his bombast and promises to Make America Great Again (MAGA), and pursue a radical foreign policy of withdrawal from globalist wars of choice and military adventurism, has been conspicuous by its absence.

Moreover, from the outset he has been beset by the ancien regime of neo-conservatives and neo-liberals – Bolton, Pompeo and Pence – entrenched in key US institutions, as well as various think-tanks and media who are still doggedly set upon the realization of neo-con foreign policy goals.

It seems odd that Rickards doesn't see fit to comment on this important development given that Trumps' campaign promises have disappeared almost without trace since he entered the Oval Office.

IT'S THE ECONOMY STUPID

Rickards is on firmer ground, however, when dissecting the 8th wonder of the world – US economic policy. The US sovereign debt (i.e., the debt of the Federal Government) to GDP is now at a record, this is unprecedented for a peacetime administration.

In addition, it is also worth noting the magnitude of US private debt and unfunded future liabilities, pensions, Medicaid, social security and so forth.

This would include household debt, student debt, financial debt, corporate debt, and municipal debt. Add this to sovereign debt and you get a figure roughly 5 times US sovereign debt, and even this is regarded as being a conservative figure according to many – see David Stockman, John Mauldin et al).

According to Rickards, the present situation has been largely the result of excess spending by both Democratic and Republican administrations. The spending has either been on 'Defence' – a Republican favourite – or social like L.B. Johnson's 'Great Society' programme – a Democratic favourite.

LBJ's administration contrived to conduct the Vietnam War as well as an expensive social programme, simultaneously. A guns plus butter economy. (The original version of the Guns versus butter argument was given in a speech on January 17, 1936, in Nazi Germany. The then Minister of Propaganda Joseph Goebbels stated: "We can do without butter, but, despite all our love of peace, not without arms." )

LBJ's guns-and-butter policies were enacted in the late sixties at the height of the Vietnam war and the Tet Offensive. The utopian attempt to have the best of both worlds brought LBJ's administration to an end; more importantly, perhaps it was also the beginning of the process which brought down the curtain on the post WW2 economic world order established at the Bretton Woods conference in 1944.

Because the costs of the Vietnam war were superimposed on the economy not far effectively from full employment, the US domestic sector was severely destabilised.

Instead of taxing the nation to pay for the war, the government engaged in the more acceptable practice of deficit financing

Vietnam showed that neither the United States nor any other democratic nation can ever again afford the foreign exchange costs of conventional warfare, although the periphery was still kept in line by American military initiatives most recently in Yugoslavia and Afghanistan.

The lesson in the long term is that peace will be maintained only by governments refusing to finance the military and other excesses of the increasingly indebted imperial power." [ 3 ]

The figure for the US sovereign debt – began to rise relentlessly from the 1980s onwards approaching wartime levels by the time of the 2008 blowout.

It has been estimated by some economic theorists that any sovereign Debt-to-GDP figure greater than 60% represents a tripwire whereby governments should act to rein in government expenditures.

The EU Maastricht criteria, for example, stipulated that EU Debt-to-GDP should not go over 60% except in certain circumstances and an annual budgetary deficit should not be more than 3%.

That is a pretty tight monetary and fiscal policy EU style, but not to be outdone the spendthrift US was to go on a wild binge in both fiscal and monetary terms the result of which is a now an unpayable mountain of debt. This gives an indication of how far US economic policymaking has drifted away from any viable economic strategy.

Rickards fulminates:

To see how America came to this pretty pass we, one needs to review almost 40 years of fiscal policy under Presidents Reagan, Bush 1, Clinton, Bush 2, Obama and Trump from the period 1981-2019." [ 4 ]

Under Reagan in 1981 US Debt-to-GDP ratio was 32.5%. The President was gung-ho for tax cuts and big spending increases, particularly 'defence' spending. This trend was continued under the tutelage of the Bushes and Clinton, and Debt-to-GDP ratio rose to 56.4% when Bush Jr, took office and had risen to 82% by the time he left.

The Obama years saw the Debt-to-GDP rise to 100%. The diagram below 2009 debt-to-GDP was 82.3% This figure has risen inexorably to over 100% in 2018. Yep, here we have the dreaded law of Diminishing returns. Every new dollar of input gives you 90 cents of output.

The above diagram illustrates the growth of debt vis-ΰ-vis National Income (GDP) since the 2008 blowout. Debt has been growing progressively faster than National Income.

The US economy, like the US shale oil industry, has become a Ponzi scheme in all but name. The Fed's issuance of new debt to pay off existing debt signals the key moment of the Minsky crisis.[ 5 ]

There doesn't appear to be any viable way out this predicament short of a straight default. But Rickards argues that 'the United States will never default on its debt because the Fed can simply print the money and to pay it off.' This will involve an engineered inflation to wipe out the debt. But in fact, inflation is the default, a default by the back door. Getting paid in worthless currency is in essence no different than not getting paid at all.

NO EXIT

As for solutions to a crisis which has seemingly reached the point of no return, all that Rickards can offer is a Japanese scenario of low or zero growth punctuated by recession for the United States and by implication for the rest of the world. The United States had its first long decade from 2007 to 2017 and is now into its second decade.

This growth pattern will persist absent of inflationary breakout which the Fed seems powerless to ignite in the short run; a war; or severe depression perhaps caused by a new financial crisis.[ 6 ]

Not much of a prospect for the average family then. But Rickards does give some useful advice to his more opulent readers on how they should diversify their assets.

There are apparently "luxury bombproof bunkers built in former missile silos and expansive estates in New Zealand loaded with rations and good wines."

Really? At this point one wonders if Mr Rickards is being serious or just smug.

SOCIAL IMMOBILITY AND THE RISE OF OLIGARCHY

The social and economic impact on levels of inequality in both the US and globally have been extremely deleterious and seem set to continue. Inequality in income and wealth – a phenomenon identified and outlined by Thomas Piketty – is resulting in societies which more and more resemble feudal economic and social structures rather than textbook capitalism. Social class is hardening into social caste and rates of social mobility are decelerating at an alarming rate.

The liberal notion that the individual is the author of his/her own destiny has become a very dubious proposition when the drawbridges of advantage, birth and preferment are drawn up. Moreover, high levels of income/wealth are not conducive to growth since the new aristocracy owns most of the wealth/income which is hoarded rather than spent on investment and/or consumption. Stagnation, idled capital and rent extraction becomes the economic norm.

Inequality is common in college admissions where the wealthy and connected continue to send their sons and daughters to elite schools while the middle-class are restrained by sky-high tuitions and the burden of student loans.

It's true in the housing market where the rich picked up mansions on the cheap in foreclosure sales whilst the middle-class were frozen in mortgage negative equity.

It's true in health care, where the rich could afford all the insurance they needed while the middle class were handicapped by unemployment and the loss of job-related benefits. These disparities also affected the adult children of the middle-class. There are no gold-plated benefits packages in the gig society

Research shows that fewer than 50% of all children aged 30 today earn more than their parents did at the same age. This 50% figure compares with 60% who earned more in 1971, and 80% who earned more in 1950.

The American dream of each generation earning more than the prior generation is collapsing before our eyes The middle class is getting poorer on a relative basis and lagging further behind the rich whose incomes absorb an increasing share of total GDP The manner in which the rich become rich is variable.

It could be due to a number of unrelated factors Problems arise in the way that the rich stay rich become richer and pass on wealth to their children and grandchildren." [ 7 ]

It is a matter of common knowledge that the traditional techniques of preserving and creating wealth have been long established in law, customs, education and socialization; these traditional methods being practised over decades, if not centuries, have produced a system of elite self-recruitment, one moreover which endures through time.

Many of the richest US citizens – e.g., Buffet, Bezos, Zuckerberg – pay minimal tax demands. Much of the wealth of the richest Americans is never taxed because they hold onto real estate and stocks and pass them onto their beneficiaries tax-free. This is one of a perfectly legal method of avoiding tax; there are many more too numerous to cite which include various other examples of tax avoidance/evasion.

Levels of income and wealth inequality within states are usually measured by what is called the Gini Co-efficient. This measure is a commonly used measure of income inequality that condenses the entire income distribution for a country into a single number between 0 and 1 or 0% to 100%: the higher the number, the greater the degree of inequality. A rough estimate of inequality is a figure above 40%.

The United States and China are in the low forties, surrounded by underdeveloped and developing states such as The Democratic Republic of the Congo, Uganda, Burundi and El Salvador. At the other end of the spectrum are Sweden, Norway and Iceland.

In this connection the by now well-known study carried out by two American academics at Princeton University Prof Martin Gilens and North western University Prof Benjamin Page argue that the US is dominated by a rich and powerful elite.

Multivariate analysis indicates that economic elites and organised groups representing business interests have substantial independent impacts on US government policy, while average citizens and mass-based interest groups have little or no independent influence."

In plain English: the wealthy few move policy, while the average American has little power.

The two professors came to this conclusion after reviewing answers to 1,779 survey questions asked between 1981 and 2002 on public policy issues. They broke the responses down by income level, and then determined how often certain income levels and organised interest groups saw their policy preferences enacted.

Americans do enjoy many features central to democratic governance, such as regular elections, freedom of speech and association and a widespread (if still contested) franchise. But we believe that if policymaking is dominated by powerful business organisations and a small number of affluent Americans, then America's claims to be a democratic society are seriously threatened."

In summation, both gentlemen concluded that in essence the US was an oligarchy not a properly functioning democracy. All very true but somewhat self-evident.

Rickards regards the present situation as being irreversible. He does not present any alternative to this trend other than some vague hopes that the 'nationalist' President in the Oval Office will turn things around – MAGA in fact.

The golden age of post WW2 capitalism ended when Nixon took the dollar off the gold standard in August 1971, which was in effect a default by the US. Holders of surplus dollars in Europe who were no longer able to swap these dollars for gold but were merely presented with other US$s with which they had to purchase US Treasurys (Bonds) debts which were never going to be repaid. In the age of fiat currencies Europe and various other holders of US Treasuries were in fact subsidizing the United States.

POOR LITTLE AMERICA

At this point the book becomes one long whinge about how hard done-by America has been and how the rest of the world has taken advantage of this benign gentle giant. This rather bizarre belief calls for further analysis. The US pays some of the bill for NATO whilst European nations pay insufficient amounts for the 'defence' of their countries.

It should be pointed out, however, that in terms of military hardware the NATO alliance is standardized to American specifications. This means large-scale purchasing of US war materiel which is a gift bonus to the US armaments industry.

Then Germany has the nerve to buy Russian gas transported to Europe via Nordstream 2 which is cheaper and more reliable than US Liquified Natural Gas (LNG), when in fact they should be buying more expensive and less reliable US LNG. Apparently, Germany ought really to be subsidising the US shale oil Ponzi racket. Bad, ungrateful Germany.

Then comes the incessant carping regarding trade policy and trade deals. The US in its speed to become a cool, post-modern, financialised economy apparently forgot about the importance of production. In the automobile industry the once dominant US triad of General Motors, Ford and Chrysler are no longer in the vanguard and Japan, with South Korea catching up, is now the leading country in the export of auto vehicles, a position which the US once held. It was the Japanese auto industry which pioneered production methods including just-in-time deliveries and lean production (Toyota). Was anyone stopping the Americans from innovating?

In rank order. Figures quoted in Global Shift – Peter Dicken.

Volkswagen, Germany: Annual Output 8,576,94 Toyota, Japan: Annual Output 8,381.968 Hyundai, South Korea: Annual Output 6,761,074 General Motor, USA: Annual Output 6,608,567 Honda, Japan: Annual Output 4,078,376 Nissan, Japan: Annual Output 3,830,954 Ford, USA: Annual Output 3,123,340 PSA, France: Annual Output 2,554,059 Suzuki, Japan: Annual Output 2,483,721 Renault, France: Annual Output 2,302,769

Globally, the leading manufacturer of auto-vehicles is Volkswagen followed by Toyota. GM are 4th and Ford are 8th of ten. Hardly market leaders anymore, but Rickards apportions the blame to 'unfair practices' by foreign manufacturers and argues instead for tariffs. The same goes for other trade partners. Fact that the United States has to a large extent been deindustrialised was a political choice of its own making.

If the US has lost ground in the competition for trade on world markets that is because of its own insular provincialism and hubris, not foreign competitive malpractice. Moreover, much of its productive industry which remains has been outsourced to low cost venues such as China. The US more than anyone should know that its competitors are simply using the same policies that it itself used during the 19th century to break British trade hegemony.

It has been the same story with agriculture. Trade liberalization (this must rank as the greatest misnomer of trade theory) and trade treaties have been an example of the blatant unfairness of such agreements. During the Uruguay round of 'talks' (1982-2000):

the United States pushed other countries to open up their markets to areas of 'our' (i.e. the US's) strength, but resisted, successfully so, to efforts to make us reciprocate.

Construction and maritime services, the areas of advantage of many developing countries were not included in the new agreement. Worse still, financial services liberalization was arguably even harmful to some developing countries: as large international (read American) banks squelched local competitors denying them the funds they garnered would be channelled to the international firms with which they felt comfortable, not the small and medium-sized local firms

As foreign banks took over the banking systems of like Argentina and Mexico worries about small and medium sized firms within these countries being starved of funds have been repeatedly voiced.

Whether these concerns are valid or not, whether they are exaggerated or not, is not the issue: the issue is that countries should have the right to make these decisions themselves, as the United States did in its own country during its formative years; but under the new international rules that America had pushed, countries were being deprived of that right.

Suffice it to say that agriculture has always been a flagrant example of the double standards inherent in the US trade liberalization agenda. Although we insisted that other countries reduce their barriers to our products and eliminate the subsidies for which those products competed against ours, the United States kept barriers for the goods produced by the developing countries, and the US continued massive subsidies to its own produce. [ 8 ] EXORBITANT PRIVILEGE

Oh, I almost forgot: the imperial tribute that the world pays to the hegemon; aka the reserve status of the dollar. The role of the US dollar in the world's political economy gives it advantages which the rest of the dollar surplus-states are dragooned into accepting. In the late sixties early seventies, the US was on the verge of technical bankruptcy due to its spending profligacy at home and military adventurism in Indochina. It had three choices of how to deal with this acute problem.

[The] 3 courses open to the US government on the collapse of the Gold Pool in London in 1968 were: immediately pull out of the war in South-East Asia and cut back overseas and domestic military expenditure to allow the dollar to firm again on world markets; to continue the war paying for its foreign exchange costs with further outflows of Fort Knox gold; or to induce the Europeans and other payments surplus areas to continue to accumulate surplus dollars and dollar equivalents (US Treasuries) not convertible into gold." [ 9 ]

Of course, it was option three that appealed and Nixon in his television broadcast was to announce a 'temporary' suspension of gold sales by the US to its overseas 'partners'.

The date in question, 15 August 1971, marked the end of one epoch and the beginning of another. The temporary suspension soon morphed into a permanent one and a global fiat currency regime based on the dollar came into being. This represented a culmination of a situation in which the US manipulation of the dollar was termed the 'Exorbitant Privilege' by the senior French politician Valery Giscard d'Estaing. And privilege it was.

The central political fact is that the dollar standard places the direction of the world monetary policy in the hands of a single country which thereby acquires great influence over the economic destiny of others. It is one thing to sacrifice sovereignty in the interests of interdependence; it is quite another when the relationship is one-way.

The difference is that between the EEC(EU) and a colonial empire. The brute fact is that the acceptance of a dollar standard necessarily implies a degree of asymmetry in power which, although it actually existed in the early post-war years, had vanished by the time that the world sliding into a reluctant dollar standard." [ 10 ]

There were a number of advantages which accrued to the dollar contingent on the ending of gold convertibility which Eichengreen listed these in his book. But the principle one was making the surplus nations of the world pay for America's wars with an unconvertible currency. Instead of being paid for in gold, or at least a gold-backed currency the world produced goods and services for a piece of green paper backed by nothing.

Quite a clever little racket when you think about it.

Better still is the way that the two biggest surplus nations, Japan and China, have been the US's main creditors, bankrolling the US by buying its Treasuries. This had another intended, or perhaps unintended effect: long term interest rates on US bonds came down (since bond prices and bond interest rates move in opposite directions) and enabled the property bubble to expand until the inevitable blow-out in 2008.

In mafia terms the US dollar has been a 'made' currency enjoying a set of privileges and protection which it did not earn but foisted upon others. This is a unique dispensation which is enjoyed by the US to which the rest of the world is excluded.

However, it is in the nature of things that privileges will ultimately get abused. In pushing its luck to the point of abuse the US should be aware that initial signs are that the world is sloughing off the US dollar. As it proceeds in that direction, the US currency will lose its position as the global reserve asset. Holders of trillions of dollar-denominated assets will become sellers eventuating in a collapse of the currency.

The US economy lives like a parasite off its partners in the global system, with virtually no savings of its own. The World produces whilst North America consumes. The advantage of the US is that of a predator whose advantage is covered, by what others agree, or are forced, to contribute.

Washington uses various means to make up for its deficiencies: for example, repeated violations of the principles of liberalism, arms exports, and the hunting-down of oil super-profits (which involves the periodic felling of producers; one of the real motives behind the wars in Iraq and Central Asia).

But the fact is that the bulk of the American deficit is covered by capital inputs from Europe and Japan, China and the South, rich oil-producing countries and comprador classes from all regions, including the poorest, in the third world, to which should be added the debt-service levy that is imposed on nearly every country in the periphery of the global system. The US superpower depends from day to day on the flow of capital which sustains its economy and society. The vulnerability of the United States represents a serious danger to Washington's project." [ 11 ]

In light of the above we may conclude that – in spite of the irritating name-dropping – Rickards' books are interesting well written and well-argued; per contra they are very light on facts which have been left deliberately unexamined as well as counter-narratives which have also been ignored.

This was to be expected quite simply because at bottom Rickards is a sophist much in the tradition of Protagoras, Gorgias and Thrasymachus "I say that justice is nothing other than the advantage of the stronger" [ 12 ]

A view which Rickards would certainly endorse. Beneath the Upper Manhattan, polished chic, there resides a ruthless Cold Warrior. The further one digs into the book, the more this becomes apparent.

NOTES:-

Frank Lee left school at age 15 without any qualifications, but gained degrees from both New College Oxford and the London School of Economics (it's a long story). He spent many years as a lecturer in politics and economics, and in the Civil Service, before retirement. He lives in Sutton with his wife and little dog.



Guy

Excellent article by Frank Lee. Many of us are aware of the problems of the USD but few are able to so succinctly explain why and connect the dots to expose the true picture. The bottom line is that the lifespan of the USD as king is almost over .There will not be any rabbit pulled out of the hat to make America great again.That is a feel good clichι used to further induce the population to go back to sleep.

The US has been exposed, and so well said, as a predator nation .There must be a reason why China and Russia are buying up as much gold as their economy will permit .The exchange medium used for trade since time immemorial .

FoodBowl
Measuring 'National Debt as a Portion of the US Economy' is for economics classes and for newspapers to publish. The Criminal Elites look at things differently. They measure the National Debt as a Portion of the 'FEROCIOUS BOMBING POWER the US Possess'. Also, 'Spreading Chaos Capabilities' is added to the Bombing Power.

From this point of view, they see enormous assets, and the debts becomes less worrying as they see less urgency to deal with this ever growing liabilities.

Fair dinkum
No analysis required because it's always been the same. The few exploit the many. This has fed the cancers of psychopathy, messiah complexes and endless wars.
We are rushing towards the midnight sun.
MASTER OF UNIVE
The Wall Street ethos has always been 'kill or be killed' where bears eat, and bulls eat, but pigs get slaughtered! The problem with today's market & stock valuations is that they are as hyperinflated as Real Estate Commercial & Residential sectors are which leaves no wiggle room for price discovery until there is a system wide crash that mean reverts the valuations back to a realistic price.

Warren Buffett is currently sitting on $55 billion in cash so that he does not get destroyed on the upcoming systemic wide crash. Buffett has never pulled this kind of bread from the table in his lifetime whilst waiting for a systemic crash & the inevitable fat tail blowout that is poised to rip the face off of the USA & EU as their eyeballs get ripped out too.

Ripping a face off & ripping eyeballs out is day trader speak for kicking counterparties in the groin for the deal. The French Revolution was all about teaching the financial elite predator class of monetary control freaks who the boss really is when the gravy train slows during Financial Winter.

And if they can't take the heat they should get out of the kitchen!

RW

mark
All that is happening now is that Trump is trying to solve his country's intractable economic and financial problems by looting the rest of the planet. This is not a new development, but Trump is at least refreshingly honest in his public pronouncements.

It has always been thus.

The current (real) military budget is $1,134 billion, around 60% higher than the fictitious figure that is normally touted.

The trade deficit is $900 billion. The budget deficit $1,175 billion, over 20% of the overall budget.

America is borrowing around $4 billion a day from the rest of the world. Uncle Sam is the biggest scrounger, parasite, leech, bludger, and panhandler in the history of the planet.

The official national debt of $22.5 trillion understates the true position by a factor of over ten. Every US man, woman, child, and babe in arms is in hock to the tune of over $700,000.

Antonym
Trump != the Swamp. They hate him.
RobG
The global economy is about to crash, yet again (because it's never really recovered from the 2008 crash)'. Answers on a postcard, please (and one that doesn't involve giving the banksters eye-watering amounts of money).
Frank Lodge
Without reading the book in question, this seems like an thoroughly sound and incisive review. Just one thing, "cometh" takes a singular subject.
BigB
Rickards attitude is famously: "Buy gold" to which he creates a fear porn scenario around the coming recession. His solution: "Buy gold". Not, lets look at the conditions that are causing the underlying boom and bust business cycles and find a solution that works for humanity. His solution: "Buy gold" which the likes of he and the others who are driving the business cyclical waves of mutilation have already done to hedge their portfolios. Fuck Ricards. I have no time for those who wish to profit from the overfinancial immiseration of humanity. And you know where you can stick your gold.

Good luck to anyone who produces gold in an actual collapse scenario. So you need to buy guns and bodyguards for self-protection if you buy gold...

mark
Gold could form some kind of basis for exchange in a collapse setting. Other desirable barter items would be alcohol, cigarettes, basic drugs like aspirin and paracetamol, electrical batteries, fuel and similar goods. Maybe ammunition as well. Goods were priced in cigarettes in postwar Germany.

Gold would probably be of use. Gemstones, jewellery, would not. 99.9% of people are unable to distinguish a real diamond from a piece of glass.

bevin
"he original version of the Guns versus butter argument was given in a speech on January 17, 1936, in Nazi Germany." Not for the first time Wikipedia is wrong here. Bismarck is normally credited with the choice between Guns and Butter. Goebbels was suggesting that Guns will bring Butter.
Martin Usher
Its nice to see this in a book but its really common knowledge. The only thing I'd dispute is this notion of an 'elite', there is no such thing, its just greed holding the reins -- its like a mass FOMO, nobody's willing to take the long view because it might mean they'll miss out on what they can grab right now.

The danger we face from this is that if a large enough economic bloc runs by more rational rules then its going to eventually cream us economically. This forces us to destroy it. This is what's at the bottom of our problems with China. The USSR wasn't strong or well organized enough to pose a real threat to us so it could be taken down primarily by economic means. The Chinese learned their lesson from the Russian experience and 'played nice' which they built their country up -- we all heard the commentariat from a few years ago about them 'not really being communists any more'. Now they're in a position to look us in the eye so we've got to confront them, to take them down. (You'll notice that one of the conditions that will end the trade war is the 'liberalizing of capital markets' -- that is, we need to take over their banking system and currency.) If -- when -- this fails then the only recourse would be actual war.

The crime in all this is in the pursuit of money -- ultimately a wholly artificial concept -- we're wasting immense amounts of resources and human potential, spreading misery and despoliation all over the planet and generally behaving like really awful global citizens. We can and must do better.

wardropper
And we certainly must stop talking about "taking down" the Chinese, and instead actually try to understand where they come from, with their roots in a far more ancient civilized society than ours.

American exceptionalism, for example, takes it for granted that we in the West are good, and therefore the East must become more like us. But we are logically, and morally, obliged to look at this from the opposite perspective too: What if the Chinese take it for granted that they are good, and therefore the West must become more like them?

I have been to China, and found the people there to consist of the same mixtures of honest, good, nondescript, sinister and deplorable as we have here at home.

They also share exactly the same fundamental problem as we do: Their politicians and their people, like ours, are two entirely separate things. Of course the origins of Chinese, or Russian, society are different from ours, but that is no reason to despise them. Our origins are often pretty despicable too.

Antonym
The Chinese people are as materialistic or spiritual as any; it is the local deep state (CPC) totalitarian culture that needs to change.
Robbobbobin
"The crime in all this is in the pursuit of money -- [w]e can and must do better."

Three thousand years?

He that loveth silver shall not be satisfied with silver; nor he that loveth abundance with increase: this is also vanity. –Ecclesiastes 5:10

Two thousand years?

For the love of money is the root of all evil –1 Timothy 6:10

Surely the Anti Deceased Equine Distress Society has lobbied some sort of statute of limitations onto the books by now?

MASTER OF UNIVE
American parasitism writ large over the last half century has amply signified to the entire world that 'manifest destiny' was merely a ruse to foist American hegemony onto all sovereign nations at the behest of an out-of-control American Oligopoly that was power-tripping post WW2 & drunk on the souls of the poor sots all over the entire world with their power hungry warmongering Military Industrial Complex.

Proof of their combined ignorance with respect to Cybernetics & Systems Theory was their willingness to follow the likes of the Vietnam War architects that assumed incorrectly that they could impose a closed-looped cybernetic control system over world finance & mercantilism throughout the entire world at the behest of academic failures like Macnamera who would not know a 'closed-looped cybernetic' from an open-looped cybernetic if his life & legacy depended on it.

Simply put, American printing presses at the privately owned Federal Reserve cannot even remotely help or assist in anymore financial profligacy for the Neoconservative or Neoliberal camps of the cerebrally sclerotic & Early Onset Dementia riddled, & uneducated, financial buffoons that emanated out of the now defunct Chicago School headed up by Strauss et al. in the 60s & 70s.

All the macroeconomic indicators over the last two decades have clearly indicated that the Greenspan era of asset inflation was nothing more than the undoing of Federal Reserve Chair Paul Volcker's hard won success during his tenure pre-Greenspan 'Maestro' halcyon days of animal spirits run amok.

In brief, the United States of America can eat my shorts as it is solely responsible for manufacturing a finance control system & requisite money pump fraud that is nothing more than a worldwide Ponzi scheme to defraud the entire world of disposable income & discretionary income gain so that all gains accrue to the rentier class of speculative investors like Warren Buffett & Bob Paulson.

Bottom line is that Warren Buffett will have to purchase all the new automobiles, trucks, houses, mansions, cottages, farms, cites, towns, railroads, roads, & precious metals as the emerging markets & first world markets all decouple just as Professor Emeritus Benoit Mandelbrot hypothesized they would just before he died.

Go ahead, America, print the fake fiat greenbacks to infinity in vain hope of extricating yourselves from the intractable financial muck & mire you are most assuredly going to find yourselves in this approaching October 2019.

Go ahead, Punk, make my day!

Are you feeling lucky, Punk?

RW

Martin Usher
Its not "American". We just happen to be the chosen host for this part of history. Before us it was the British Empire that was top dog.

Money has no particular loyalty to a country. In pre-WW1 Europe the bourgeois were all intermarried, connected primarily by wealth and power regardless of their nominal nationality, our present equivalent are similarly connected. Just like WW1 when the chips are down we -- the ordinary people -- will be sacrificed on the alter of patriotism while they'll survive and prosper.

MASTER OF UNIVE
March 10th 2008 around 11:00am Bear Stearns time New York shitty was the virtual end of American hegemony worldwide forever more into the obvious future of Macroeconomics & Macroprudential Policy as an ongoing concern. Debt-to-GDP of all sovereign Western imperialist nations is intractably North of any semblance of sustainability vis-a-vis Finance worldwide or within Emerging Economies or First World Developed Economies.

Intractable debt limits were broached when Nixon declared the bankruptcy of the Bretton Woods infrastructure of gold backed USA Reserve Currency Status and then opted in ignorance for the petro-dollar bait & switch fiat USD Finance capture worldwide which has now come home to roost across the rust belt of the heartland USA, and in places that were once bastions of manufacturing for the middle class USA blue collar worker such as Detroit or Chicago. Today the business model of the USA is transnationalist whereby places across the USA are not even remotely financed into that transnationalist Wall Street model of Finance that is wholly parasitic to the point of crashing mainstreet USA across all sectors of the Service Sector Industries that were supposed to be replacing the long lost USA Manufacturing Base that was offshored to the Third World sovereigns that would temporarly increase profit margins for the transnationalist class of corporate parasites run amok to collectively destroy all life on Planet Earth for centuries to come if we are lucky.

RW

martin

You have made the common mistake of asserting that it is America, instead of those who govern (the USA and its pundits) that have engineered the problems you point out.

Why would the two parties in congress (Article II followers) and the two fellows with the Article II power, continue to [expand the debt in fake, made up and useless expenses], unless they were controlled by external forces?

Maybe bankers and their high powered corporations are finding they can no longer easily dupe Americans into delivering their resources into the pockets of the wealthy. Maybe the American people have drawn the line, no more, will they produce for the IMF, world bank?

Maybe Americans have decided to refuse the tax burdens imposed to retire the fed debt? Maybe foreign nations have denied the banks and their corporations access to their resources as a means to pay the USA debt? Maybe script has been recognized as a false capital in-capable of ruling the world? Maybe organized criminals have taken up positions in the western governments and used those positions to force on the governed many things? Maybe burdening the USA with debt is part of the plan to bankrupt America? <==but why should the banks bankrupt America, why has access to education been limited, why has the USA spied on Americans? Why have the governed Americans been denied access to the USA? Has the USA retired Americans from productive jobs, in order to accelerate the demise of America? The USA has made Americans into debtors obligated to pay bankers in the form of taxes to be collected by the USA and remitted to the bankers. <= just as is now occurring in Britain, Greece, France, and other places. Privatization, monopolization and conversion from public to private franchising and ownership have served as the transforming agents that have made the elite so wealthy.

Economic Zionism. as opposed to government regulated capitalism, condones no competition, allows no prisoners and either takes or destroys all likely competitive elements (persons, corporations, or nations) Economic Zionism demands the government that governs (as in USA governance over Americans) assist in rendering Americans broke. Is it because until Americans are broke, the EZ bandits are hampered? Is scooping resources into private, monopoly powered, already wealthy hands, the goodies to be had the goal? Maybe the USA is a privatizing agent instead of a benefactor serving Americans?

In USA governed America, there is much very-productive farm land, millions of tons of minerals, many productive seaports, and tons and tons of money making monopolies (patents, copyrights, royalties, government franchised goodies, lucrative government contracts, and plenty of government services and resources) to be privatized for profit. The goodies are located in thousands of acres of rich farmland, the major ports and services attached thereto, and embedded within little domestic American companies which the USA debt will eventually burden into bankruptcy. After all "scalping a bankruptcy" is historically a speciality of economic zionism.

MASTER OF UNIVE
In 1994 JPMorgan management & traders went on a little holiday in Miami to concoct the Global Ponzi of debt & risk associated with loans into what is known today as the Financialization Process whereby bank risk would be shuffled off of investment bank balance sheets and onto those speculators that wanted to purchase all that risk involved in the bank portfolios en masse because they knew how to offload that risk to unsuspecting greater fools that were always certain to come knocking in a climate of upward growth and yield curve convexity. But the chink in their financial alchemy was obviously debt limits and the ability to track the risk to the system as a whole given that all transactions in the derivatives world are dark & unregulated due to the helmsmen like the Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson who previous to being nominated as Treasury Secretary was in fact the top man at Goldman Sachs where he raked in approximately a smooth billion before traversing the revolving door between the Whore House & Goldman Sachs New York shitty offices.

Casino Banking morphed into Late Stage Ponzi Capitalism when Bob Paulson wanted more Residential Mortgage Backed Security issuance and pressured Goldman Sachs into providing more issuance via NINJA loans & Liar Loans after 05 when the Wall Street speculators had to go bottom feeding for loan issuance in order to meet investor demand & apatite for their unhinged Gordon Gecko greed.

'Maestro' Greenspan emphasized his 'flaw' in his macroeconomic model of the world when the investor greed broached fat tails on the order of a 10% crash of the power laws of distributions of loan issuance. Greenspan never assumed that the Financialization Process would exceed a default scenario greater than 5-7% of no-performing loans in the subprime issuance tranche.

American exceptionalism via Henry Paulson USA Treasury Secretary 08 is what rendered American Late Stage Ponzi Capitalism wholly defunct going forward into 2020 & beyond with a permanent lower bound CB Interest Rate Regime & specter of WW3 hot conflagration.

My money is on the pinko Commie bastards this time round the sovereign insolvency loop of domestic misery USA.

WELCOME to the New World Disorder!

RW

nottheonly1
To condense this lengthy essay: This ship is sinking.

This would include household debt, student debt, financial debt, corporate debt, and municipal debt. Add this to sovereign debt and you get a figure roughly 5 times US sovereign debt, and even this is regarded as being a conservative figure according to many

One – at least on this side of the screen – cannot but think that all this is by design. The cart is driven intentionally off the cliff. To start off with a clean slate? Where the wealthy still have their wealth, but the suckers are depending on hand-outs?

An old proverb alledges that: To borrow brings sorrow.

To which only those who make loads of money from lending will disagree. Where are the solutions? No solutions, just listicles as to how bad it all is? Sure, the West is reminiscent of the HMS Titanic – with the slight difference of the hole made by the iceberg (debt) extending over the whole length of the ship. It is listing beyond dancing.

Well, I am willing to tell a secret (that isn't one anymore for quite some time):

Make them punishable with prison time of no less than half of the age at which they were perpetrated. You're 30? You're going in for 15. You're 65? Easy math.

Fact is, that there are solutions galore to save our souls. Problem is, those whose lives are depending on them, don't demand them to be implemented. And why would the wealthy tax non-payers like Bezos et al want to change their 'winning team'? That is a well known no-no. The only solution the masses of the little people can hope for is 'Force Majeur' that works to their benefit. Shall we wait for that to happen?

[Sep 09, 2019] American exceptionalism, for example, takes it for granted that we in the West are good, and therefore the East must become more like us

Sep 09, 2019 | off-guardian.org

wardropper

And we certainly must stop talking about "taking down" the Chinese, and instead actually try to understand where they come from, with their roots in a far more ancient civilized society than ours.

. But we are logically, and morally, obliged to look at this from the opposite perspective too: What if the Chinese take it for granted that they are good, and therefore the West must become more like them?

I have been to China, and found the people there to consist of the same mixtures of honest, good, nondescript, sinister and deplorable as we have here at home.

They also share exactly the same fundamental problem as we do: Their politicians and their people, like ours, are two entirely separate things. Of course the origins of Chinese, or Russian, society are different from ours, but that is no reason to despise them. Our origins are often pretty despicable too.

[Sep 06, 2019] America's Billionaires Congealing Around Warren and Buttigieg by Eric Zuesse

In comparison with Joe Biden or Kamala Harris, Warren is huge progress even with her warts and all.
Notable quotes:
"... the DNC is already gaming polls, cherry-picking which are "official" for their 2% threshhold. MSNBC and other networks and pundits also cherry-pick. Or even simply outright lie if the poll doesn't match what they want it to. ..."
"... Polling should either be eliminated or held to MUCH more consistent and much more scientific standards. (demographics, prediction analysis, neutral rather than leading questions, standardized formats, etc.) Until then they're simply more and more useless as predictors of the real poll, the primaries or general. ..."
"... The difference no is, that countries like Canada, the U.S., Australia, UK, Poland, Ukraine, Hungary and with the AfD Germany are either as fascist, or more fascist than ever before. Once again, Russia is hyped up to be the eternal arch enemy of 'Western fascist values', 'freedom and democracy'. How much more difficult would it be today to round up resistance against a fascist axis that is hellbent to march again Russia? ..."
"... Sure, Trudeau is nothing but a bag of lukewarm air, but he employs hard core fascists in his cabinet – paid for by the Canadian people. ..."
"... History will look at the Sanders Warren debacle in the same way it must look now at the theft of the nomination of Henry A. Wallace in favor of the person that had no whatsoever second thoughts about dropping two nukes on an enemy that had already succumbed to the Soviet forces. Henry A. Wallace would heve never dropped these nukes. He was a staunch supporter of the 'common man'. All his policies reflected that. He was a presidential nominee for, of and by the people. ..."
"... To all the mindless party members of the Democratic fascist party: if you repeat history by allowing for the second time to install a puppet of the fascist powers in the U.S., you bear the full responsibilty for the dropping of the next nukes. ..."
"... The difference between Sanders and Wallace is a painful one. Wallace fought against the theft of his nomination with all he got. Subsequently, he realized that the 'Democratic' party would never allow for a person with integrity and the well being of the people at heart to win any nomination. He would have won the following presidency as a third party nominee – Trumann however knew how to prevent that. ..."
"... Much of what is sickening about the US as an imperial power today was present well before 1944 – indeed was present during the 19th century when the US made colonies of Hawaii and the Philippines in the 1890s, and occupied Haiti in 1915 (?), not leaving that country until the 1930s. ..."
"... Forgive me for saying so, but is a party of working folks really supposed to be grovelling for favours from billionaires? ..."
"... I think Gabbard is as authentic a new voice as i have ever seen in the DNC. She may well make it as an independent. Would Sanders? ..."
"... I'd say if a Gabbard/Paul grassroots campaign run by the Sanders 'momentum' network got their act together the USA may finally mature into a proper democracy not owned by their neolib con artistes. ..."
"... America where democracy has been extinguished and their increasingly paranoid voters are under the mistaken belief that yet another talking head can return them to a fair and impartial existence. ..."
"... Too late. Money is king and those that have most want more. The sideshow of elections produces the performing clowns such as Trump, Obama, Bush etc.all spouting the same vacuous promises on behalf of their wealthy benefactors. No real choice or change and an illusion of caring for the welfare of their citizenry. Listen carefully to the clowns, it's the sound of money talking. ..."
Sep 03, 2019 | off-guardian.org

So: the rise of Elizabeth Warren gives the billionaires a 'progressive' candidate who might either win the nomination or else at least split progressive voters during the primaries (between Sanders and Warren) and thus give the nomination to Buttigieg, who is their first choice (especially since both Biden and Harris have been faltering so badly of late).

This explains the gushings for Warren, at such neocon rags as The Atlantic, The New Republic , New Yorker , and Mother Jones .

It's being done in order to set up the final round, so as for its outcome to be acceptable to the billionaires who fund the Democratic Party. Her record in the U.S. Senate is consistently in support of U.S. invasions, coups, and sanctions against countries that have never invaded nor even threatened to invade the U.S., such as Venezuela, Palestine, Syria, and Iran ; she's 100% a neocon (just like G.W. Bush, Obama and Trump were/are); and, to billionaires, that is even more important than her policy-record regarding Wall Street is, because the Military Industrial Complex, which she represents, is even more important to enforcing and spreading the U.S. megacorporate empire than the investment-firms are.

Investigative historian Eric Zuesse is the author, most recently, of They're Not Even Close: The Democratic vs. Republican Economic Records, 1910-2010 , and of CHRIST'S VENTRILOQUISTS: The Event that Created Christianity


Jumpbean Max

I feel like any analysis that even mentions polls is guesswork, because nowadays polls are almost entirely useless. In that they aren't accurately measuring people who are actually going to go to open/semi-open or even closed primaries, and caucuses. The cohort of likely voters is different from the cohort who bothers to pick up a phone call from an unknown (polling) number. Or make it through a whole poll. Or do any online polls. Or have a reachable phone # at all.

Plus the fact that the DNC is already gaming polls, cherry-picking which are "official" for their 2% threshhold. MSNBC and other networks and pundits also cherry-pick. Or even simply outright lie if the poll doesn't match what they want it to.

Polling should either be eliminated or held to MUCH more consistent and much more scientific standards. (demographics, prediction analysis, neutral rather than leading questions, standardized formats, etc.) Until then they're simply more and more useless as predictors of the real poll, the primaries or general.

I liked the article other than that though.

mark
"Vote for me, I'm gay!"
"Vote for me, I'm a Red Indian!"
Daniel Rich
Do these 'Democratic Party billionaires ' have names and further affiliations? Could it be that most of these 'Democratic Party billionaires ' favor the Apartheid State? Hmmmmm?
George Cornell
David Bradley's The Atlanticmagazine headlined on August 26th, "Elizabeth Warren Manages to Woo the Democratic Establishment". Wooing in American politics = betraying your principles, cutting deals, bending to the wishes of the powerful, and all round submissive boot-licking.
Roberto
That would be describing successful politics in any country at any time in history. An unsuccessful politician would do the inverse of what you list. For those with good memories, let's try to name some.
George Cornell
Not everyone would agree with that definition of success, but you are quite right.
wardropper
Voice in the "Emperor's New Clothes" story: "Why don't we just ban all financial support of presidential candidates? – I thought this was supposed to be about the person best qualified and best suited to run the country "

HEY! Somebody shut that child up right now, will you!

nevermind
US politics running the UK? Still western nations 'Haves' are playing with themselves and politics. What big fat Yawn.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/cOmdkN6MOwU

bevin
The significance of Sanders is this: if he wins the nomination he will have done so by leading an insurrectionary movement, not only within the Democratic Party but in US society itself. He simply cannot win otherwise. And if he wins the primaries it will have been in spite of the great mass of money and Establishment influence having been mobilised against him.

In other words he is right to call his supporters a "revolution."

It is of course equally true of the Corbyn movement- any victories are immense defeats for both the Establishment and its media. That, in itself is important.
And nowhere more than in Canada where the third and fourth parties- the NDP and the Greens- continue to tack further and further to the right, trying to catch up with the rightward swing of the Liberal Party -now close to full on neo-naziism- and the ultra right Tories.

https://www.strategic-culture.org/news/2019/09/01/the-canadian-prime-minister-needs-a-history-lesson/

nottheonly1
Thank You for the link. While I am keenly aware of the untold history of WWII and the fact that Hitler would have never gotten where he was from 1933-1941 without the propping up by both U.S. and Zionist interests (mind the redundancy), eager to crush the perceived anti-capitalist behemoth Soviet Union, I am wondering about the present re-run of the same story unfolding.

The difference no is, that countries like Canada, the U.S., Australia, UK, Poland, Ukraine, Hungary and with the AfD Germany are either as fascist, or more fascist than ever before. Once again, Russia is hyped up to be the eternal arch enemy of 'Western fascist values', 'freedom and democracy'. How much more difficult would it be today to round up resistance against a fascist axis that is hellbent to march again Russia?

Sure, Trudeau is nothing but a bag of lukewarm air, but he employs hard core fascists in his cabinet – paid for by the Canadian people. The rest of the what goes for the 'value West' is more of a disgrace than at any time before. These are the real dark ages, as I have stated before. Nothing good can come from these psychopathic puppets in control of countries that ought to deserve much better. Maybe, just maybe, the people of the countries in question should read Rudi Dutschke's works about 'Extra Parliamentary Opposition' – for Dummies?

Junaid
Until Turkey is able to produce S-400 anti-aircraft missile systems – it will buy weapons from Russia. Turkey intends to buy from Russia additional S-400 air defense systems

Turkey intends to buy from Russia additional S-400 air defense systems

nottheonly1
While Bernie Sanders is no Henry A. Wallace by a long shot, Elizabeth Warren is the new Harry Trumann. The Democrats are still the Democratic fascist Party of America and have their party base hypnotized into believing that it has the well being of its voters on its mind.

That is of course a lie and pure propaganda. And since the U.S. is the second most vulnerable nation to propaganda and fascism – with Germany being the number one, in both the past and the present – the people that refuse to leave the Democratic Fascist Party are remiscent of those people who kept following Hitler, even after it had become clear that his 'party' would drive Germany into the abyss.

For the brownshirt-like followers of proven war criminals that both lead, or finance the 'party', absolutely no crime is big enough that would warrant to turn their back on the fascist party.

History will look at the Sanders Warren debacle in the same way it must look now at the theft of the nomination of Henry A. Wallace in favor of the person that had no whatsoever second thoughts about dropping two nukes on an enemy that had already succumbed to the Soviet forces. Henry A. Wallace would heve never dropped these nukes. He was a staunch supporter of the 'common man'. All his policies reflected that. He was a presidential nominee for, of and by the people.

That did not sit too well with the fascists and they stole the nomination from him. Present day America has turned into this corrupt cesspool because of this stolen nomination. Everything that is sickening about the U.S. today, started in 1944. All the surveillance, the mindcontrol, the cold war and the transformation into a wannabe empire – they are all the result of this infamy by the hands of the Democratic fascists.

To all the mindless party members of the Democratic fascist party: if you repeat history by allowing for the second time to install a puppet of the fascist powers in the U.S., you bear the full responsibilty for the dropping of the next nukes. Suffering from such deep sitting cognitive dissonance, party members will find all kinds of excuses to prevent the truth from coming out. Just as there was no war crime by Clinton and Obama sufficient enough to not cheer them like the greatest baseball team ever. Leave the Democratic fascist party now, or have history piss on your graves.

Norcal
Very convincing argument and link, perfectly done. Thank you nottheonly1.
nottheonly1
Thank You, Norcal. It may be best to download these video clips, since they are all taken down one after another based on 'copyright issues'.

The difference between Sanders and Wallace is a painful one. Wallace fought against the theft of his nomination with all he got. Subsequently, he realized that the 'Democratic' party would never allow for a person with integrity and the well being of the people at heart to win any nomination. He would have won the following presidency as a third party nominee – Trumann however knew how to prevent that. As the clip states, the American people only have to be frightened and you can sell them their own demise on a golden platter. The ridicule and shaming of those who want a third party can also be traced back to this time.

It is equally very disturbing that the owner class managed to brain wash the people into accepting the use of 'oligarchs', 'billionaires', or 'donors' when in truth they are the real fascists Henry Wallace had warned about. This must be reversed by all means available. People must understand that the concerted use of these euphemisms will make it next to impossible to accept what these persons really are and what their goals are.

Jen
Much of what is sickening about the US as an imperial power today was present well before 1944 – indeed was present during the 19th century when the US made colonies of Hawaii and the Philippines in the 1890s, and occupied Haiti in 1915 (?), not leaving that country until the 1930s. Of course there was also the genocide of First Nations peoples through the theft of their lands, the wars waged to force them onto reservations, and the massive slaughter of bison as a way of destroying many indigenous cultures.
nottheonly1
Yes, but never before was the deliberate change of course towards fascism so blatant than with the ouster of Wallace. This was the watershed moment that turned the U.S. into the greatest threat for humanity. When You read about Wallace, You will find out that he generally wanted reconcile with the Native Indian Nation. He wanted cooperation with the Soviet Union/Russians for a lasting global peace and prosperity for everyone, not just a few American maggots. Present day U.S. started at that real day of infamy.
Lysias
Wallace was also a big supporter of establishing Israel.
Seamus Padraig

So, whereas they would be able to deal with Warren, they wouldn't be able to deal with Sanders, whose policy-record is remarkably progressive in all respects, and not only on domestic U.S. matters.

Frankly, Bernie could be better on foreign policy. While he did vote against the Iraq War–I give him all due credit for that–he hasn't really opposed any of Washington's other wars, coups and rιgime-change operations in recent memory. Oh: and Bernie, the self-described socialist, once referred to Hugo Chavez as a "dead dictator". That being said, he would still be preferable to the remaining flotsam in the today's Democrap Party.

Rhys Jaggar
Forgive me for saying so, but is a party of working folks really supposed to be grovelling for favours from billionaires? The Republicans are supposed to be the party for the rich, not the Democrats . And is not time for billionaires to be bumped off by politicians, not politicians bumped off by billionaires?
ANDREW CLEMENTS
Democrat Party are plantation owners at heart
Philip Roddis
A tad uncritical on Sanders, especially his foreign policies, but otherwise an excellent and closely argued takedown of the risible but sadly widespread delusion that America is a democracy. Thanks Eric.
Wilmers31
Democracy itself does not say anything about quality of life, it's just a system. US democracy runs on money. Most thing in life do – pretending it is otherwise, that's where the problem is.

Democracy is just the shell – if you fill it with sh1t it's bad; if you fill it with honey it's sweet.

Biden is remote-controllable, he'd do as told – so of course big money would prefer him.

Philip Roddis
I've just the other day written this piece on democracy . The immediate context is the fiasco re the UK Queen granting Boris Johnson's request to prorogue (temporarily dissolve) parliament, but the issues run deeper and wider.
Dungroanin

There is a long way to that election yet. (The US, ours is finally within reach, unless some wildebeast tramples in )

The DNC dirty tricks won't wash this time – perhaps its time to start reading and talking about the nitty gritty of these leaked mails – if for nothing else for the bravery and ultimate sacrifice of Seth Rich.

How about it Phillip Roddis?

Philip Roddis
Well I'm already stretched perilous thin, DG, but will give it thought.

Meantime, this piece from last week by Katia Novella Miller, first of a two parts with second part to follow on the same KBNB World News site, gives a precis of what Wikileaks showed the world.

George Cornell
Thanks for this -a must read.
Chris Rogers
The lack of mention of Gabbard is telling, as is the fact the Billionaire crowd (Rubinites) are pushing for a candidate I ain't even heard of.

The fact remains, a Sanders – Gabbard ticket against Trump is the preferable outcome for many observers on the Left.

Just as a reminder, neither Sanders & Gabbard are God like figures, in much the same way Corbyn ain't, however, they are the best available at this juncture in time if we really want some change, even if it is incremental.

Dungroanin
I think Gabbard is as authentic a new voice as i have ever seen in the DNC. She may well make it as an independent. Would Sanders?

I read somewhere that the US electorate were self identified as third Republican, Democrat and independent.

If they were given an independent ticket- not part of the two billionaire funded main parties then enough may join the independent third from these.

I'd say if a Gabbard/Paul grassroots campaign run by the Sanders 'momentum' network got their act together the USA may finally mature into a proper democracy not owned by their neolib con artistes.

Grafter
America where democracy has been extinguished and their increasingly paranoid voters are under the mistaken belief that yet another talking head can return them to a fair and impartial existence.

Too late. Money is king and those that have most want more. The sideshow of elections produces the performing clowns such as Trump, Obama, Bush etc.all spouting the same vacuous promises on behalf of their wealthy benefactors. No real choice or change and an illusion of caring for the welfare of their citizenry. Listen carefully to the clowns, it's the sound of money talking.

[Aug 29, 2019] https://off-guardian.org/2019/08/26/suddenly-western-regime-changes-keep-failing/

Aug 29, 2019 | off-guardian.org

Aiwl

Restricting the freedom of Xinjiang jihadis is a thorn in the backside of the criminals in Washington as they see their ability to brainwash, recruit and train more terrorists from the area is hugely reduced.

One of the cancers that needs to be eliminated is the propaganda device called VOA, voice of america. It needs to be dealt with and eliminated from all Asian countries. Even today, in VietNam, there are brainaltered creatures who listen to VOA and believe that the US is a force for freedom and democracy.

vexarb

Andre: "Suddenly "

You wrote of course "Suddenly" as shorthand for 7 years of blood sweat and tears by the Axis of Resistance (Syria, Hezb'Allah, Iran and Russia). Preceded by decades of individual resistance before these Allies came together in a united front.

"A thousand years is but the blink of an eyelid to The Lord". -- Old Testament

mark
Cue more crocodile tears for "the poor Uighurs" from the same people who killed half a million Iraqi children under 5 in Iraq.
mark
I'm just a suspicious of stories about 6 million moslem Uighurs in concentration camps being turned into lamp soap and shades from the same people who are currently waging a hybrid war against China, and who are obviously so, so concerned about the welfare of moslems.
uncle tungsten
The USA is soooo concerned about theUighurs that it totally forgot to reserve some concern for the Venezuelan people that it is currently starving and denying national wealth to so they can purchase hospitals, expand education services build new infrastructure etc.

The USA has so much concern that even its poodle over the Atlantic at airstrip one has stolen the Venezuelan people's gold so they cannot improve health services, expand education etc etc. The five eyes look on approvingly and should any vassal blink then the USA will simply push up the price of oil as punishment. That increase will not affect the USA as it continues to stripmine the wealth of its future generations to achieve self sufficiency right now.

[Aug 29, 2019] The US had 8,500 troops in Afghanistan in June 2019

Aug 29, 2019 | off-guardian.org

Antonym

The poorest country in Asia – Afghanistan – has totally collapsed under NATO occupation.

Complete BS! It is the continued Pakistani ISI influence in Afghanistan presently though their Haqqani Taliban network plus ISIS that is terrorizing Afghanistan, including intentional bombings of wedding parties
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nadahan_wedding_bombing & https://www.apnews.com
/b5ceb0cfb33d4d73aaaadf5eee19fe9d

The Pakistani army wants Afghanistan as "strategic depth" in case of a conflict with India.

Tony
Ah! So the US-led invasion, with it's endless stream of weak US-approved 'governments', has had nothing to do with Afghanistan's continued instability then. Got it!!!
Antonym
The US had 8,500 troops in Afghanistan in June 2019, peanuts compared to the Taliban (60,000) or the Pakistani Army (650,000) next door. https://www.nato.int/nato_static_fl2014/assets/pdf/pdf_2019_06/20190625_2019-06-RSM-Placemat.pdf

Pakistan is the only overland supply route available for the US military; roads via Iran and Russia are politically out. All their fuel, ammo and food towards Afghanistan is under Pakistani ISI control from 1978 till now, with the interruption of 2009 – 2015 . https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/NATO_logistics_in_the_Afghan_War#History

mark
Afghanistan has been the victim and playground for Neocon intrigue for years.
A liberal, progressive left wing regime that furthered women's rights and social provision was destroyed by Uncle Sam in its own interests to weaken Russia.
Bin Laden and his splendid chaps were put on the CIA payroll for the purpose.
The result was a long running bloodbath with 28,000 Russian and 1,4 million Afghan dead.
Followed by years of civil war, US invasion and the imposition of a narco warlord puppet government on the country.
Tony
Hasn't Afghanistan gone from having hardly any opium production prior to the US-led invasion, to currently being the source of something like 99% of the world's source for heroin?
mark
The Cocaine Import Agency runs the coke trade out of South America.
Might as well run the heroin trade out of Afghanistan as well.
Martin Usher
Have you considered that the Pakistan of 1980 may not be the same country with the same players as the Pakistan of 2019? Also, when you get a weak/chaotic government then its quite likely that different factions or forces within a country may pursue widely different goals?

[Aug 29, 2019] It has now come to the stage where NATO cannot fight a ground war against Russia, China, or even Iran.

NATO, like the EU bureaucracy, is little more than a job creation scheme for neocons who the otherwise would be unemployable.
Aug 29, 2019 | off-guardian.org

Francis Lee

It has now come to the stage where NATO cannot fight a ground war against Russia, China, or even Iran. Since firstly, there would be huge opposition to such another crackpot piece of military adventurism, in both the US and more so in its vassals. The Korean, Vietnam (Indo-China), and Iraq wars ended the era of massive ground conflicts in which hundreds of thousands of ground troops were involved.

More importantly was the draft, which met with massive opposition in the US itself. Secondly there was the enormous cost of such a dubious venture. The cost of these wars led to a run on the dollar as other states were cashing in their surplus dollars for gold, all of which resulted to Nixon taking the dollar off the gold standard in August 1971. Empires, as the US is learning, are expensive little items, and as the British also found out during their long retreat, beginning with India.

NATO, like the EU bureaucracy, is little more than a job creation scheme for the otherwise unemployable. It must be difficult to dream up a scheme in which these otherwise redundant individuals can be employed in doing useful. But NATO like the EU is a bureaucracy, and bureaucracies by their nature strive to exist and expand with no particular goals or objectives to realise. It is just a matter or going through the motions: the means, the routine becomes and end in itself. As Joseph Alois Schumpeter observed: " That in Egypt a class of professional soldiers formed during the war against the Hyksos, persisted, even when those were over, along with its warlike instincts and interests this military grouping created by wars that required it, now created the wars in required."

Bittersweet
Who will plan economies: Financial managers (Trump and Wall St), or democratic governments (Bernie)?

Bonnie Faulkner: If there were pressures to create a New International Economic Order in the 1970s, what was this new order looking to achieve?

Michael Hudson: Other countries wanted to do for their economies what the United States has long done for its own economy: to use their governments' deficit spending to build up their infrastructure, raise living standards, create housing and promote progressive taxation that would prevent a rentier class, a landlord and financial class from taking over economic management.

In the financial field, they wanted governments to create their own money, to promote their own development, just like the United States does. The role of neoliberalism was the opposite: it was to promote the financial and real estate sector and monopolies to take economic management away from government.

So the real question from the 1980s on was about who would be the basic planning center of society. Would it be the financial sector – the banks and bondholders, whose interest is really the One Percent that own most of the banks' bonds and stocks?

Or, is it going to be governments trying to subsidize the economy to help the 99 Percent grow and prosper? That was the social democratic view opposed by Thatcherism and Reaganism.

https://soundcloud.com/guns-and-butter-1/the-imf-and-world-bank-partners-in-backwardness-michael-hudson-407

http://www.unz.com/mhudson/de-dollarizing-the-american-financial-empire/

nottheonly1
I didn't know that. I always thought it stand for 'Venom of America'. Or worse.
Robbobbobin
'It might help, Glasshopper, if you identify your sources on "the longstanding and increasing oppression of Uigurs in Xinjiang".'

Erm:

Have you travelled all over the region as i have? Do you have friends who've married into the community?

Patient "anecdotal" evidence bad, identifiable textbook assertion definitive? Ever thought of becoming a medic?

DunGroanin
The highwater mark for the centuries long Anglo Imperialism is constantly reached across the globe. Indian subcontinent, Tibet, Korea, Vietnam, Cambodia in the east. Afghanistan and across back to the ME now the desperate bottom of the barrel petty caesars of the declining Empire are now splashing around in the Med' – Boltons latest missive by twitter:

"All hands on deck in the campaign to stop Iran from funding terror, destabilizing the globe, and breaking international sanctions. The illicit oil heading to Turkey on the Adrian Darya 1 must not be allowed off-loaded in port or at sea."

!!!!!!!!!!!

How the fuck can anyone take the failing Empire at all seriously when one of its highly placed unelected arseholes starts telling the World about what not to do with ONE fully laden oil tanker, thoisands of miles from his homeland?? Who the fuck do they think they are telling never mind talking to? And we are supposed to salute and say yes sir, will do, whatever you say, massa.

Fuck 'em.

nottheonly1
Bolton is a mentally ill subject whose sense for reality is so much compromised,that he lives in a fantasy world like anybody who believes to be Napoleon, or worse. He is constantly projecting his own criminal activities onto others.

Part of his mental illness is that he is incapable to realize that nobody is taking him serious anymore – but people that are mentally worse off then him. He and his fan base belong into closed mental healthcare, where they can wear their Napoleon hats and hide their hands under their jackets.

Father Beyond
My diagnosis of the life-condition of John Bolton is that he displays all the classic attributes of the psychopath.

He tries to present a charming facade, behind which lies a complete lack of empathy with human life, which to these warmongering delinquents, remains a commodity to be disposed of in the satisfaction of their lusts and cravings for money, power, influence and status, at the base of which lies a perversion of the dignity and worth of all life, human or otherwise, which struggles to survive in the face of extinction on this planet, which is the property of no-one yet the property of all.. He is a high priest of Neo-liberalism and he expounds the "Monroe Doctrine" – which is but one of the heretical doctrines of Imperialism. The criticisms being directed towards Andre Vitchek here (and elsewhere) are unfounded and give the impression that these superior beings who mock him from above, have never read any of his books, let alone given any serious consideration to the issues he raises. I don't agree with all of his views, but it appears he displays more courage and integrity than those who like to take cheap shots at him, seeking refuge in the knowledge that few will even bother to challenge them. Just remember one thing – you are as bad as the person you condemn. Looking into the mirror of your life-condition, you will see the "clown", the 'muppet", the "idiot", the "racist" and the 'virtue signaller". Call the next patient in please. . . . . .

Martin Usher
There are plenty more Boltons where he comes from. Most are a bit more subtle in their approach but they still share the same goals.
I m
In all honesty and in reply to 'Father Beyond' i'm convinced these people are simply crazed from watching too many superhero movies.
George
Another issue is what this means for the home populations of the Western nations. As the Western ruling class finds it harder and harder to intimidate the countries it has been bleeding, it will find its own formerly luxuriant position in danger and will start to demand more and more from its lower classes. And since the threat of a worker's revolution (posed very concretely by Russia and China in the first half of the 20th century) no longer applies, the welfare state (formed as a concession to keep the proles in line) will become increasingly decimated. Our ruling class no longer even has to pretend to care. In short, the UK and US publics will start to become more and more like the foreign native populations targeted by the West.
Pablo
Good points George, although as Vladimir Lenin allegedly said "The best way to control the opposition is to lead it ourselves." ..Or have a look at 'Wall Street and the Bolshevik Revolution' book by Anthony C Sutton, available widely or pdf here; https://www.voltairenet.org/IMG/pdf/Sutton_Wall_Street_and_the_bolshevik_revolution-5.pdf

https://steemit.com/life/@steemtruth/controlled-opposition-your-friend-might-be-your-enemy-truth

Also Mao was a "Yaley" – headline: 'Yale Group Spurs Mao's Emergence' http://digital.library.yale.edu/cdm/compoundobject/collection/yale-ydn/id/135148/rec/14
https://www.corbettreport.com/china-and-the-new-world-order-transcript/

So it seems that the 'workers revolutions' were not 100% grassroots up risings, just as today's "Colour Revolutions" often arise out of the hidden hand of various change agents and NGO's whose cover is as providing humanitarian support etc.

The Welfare State may have been as you say a concession, but there could conceivably be other reasons too maybe?

George
I think the Western governments, having had decades of practice and observation, know full well not only to control the opposition and not only to lead it but to create it too. In a way, all this is just an extension of capitalist consumerism. The idea is to find out what everyone wants and then manufacture the image of it, but not the reality.

According to the Adam Curtis documentary, "Century of the Self", Edward Bernays, father of the modern PR industry, was asked by cigarette manufacturers how to get women to smoke (in those days it was considered a male activity and the cig industry figured it was missing out on a huge potential market demographic). Bernays did a bit of research and found out that what women wanted was to be more independent "like men". So Bernays staged a publicity stunt whereby a number of young attractive women were to gather and light "torches of freedom" – this info being delivered with maximum publicity throughout the media. So the day comes, the women appear and light cigarettes and smoke them. You hear that and think, "Oh come on now!" But it apparently worked. (Actually I don't think it was a simple case of fooling the public but of signalling via the press that it was no longer "unseemly" for women to smoke.) the point being that women wanted freedom, were delivered a "substitute" which turned out to be little cancer sticks. That's the way capitalism works. And that's also the way the propaganda system works too.

You could call this "the genius of capitalism". Capitalism says, "Whatever you want, we can give! You want beauty? Here it is! You want ugliness? Have it! You want violence? Here! You want rebellion? Here again! You want the overthrow of the capitalist system? No problem!" Of course it doesn't intend the actual delivery of any of these. It simply drudges up more commodities.

Thus we can expect the creation of any number of phoney oppositions. Now it may be paranoia but I think that Dave McGowan's "Weird Scenes Inside the Canyon" about the deliberate manufacture of trendy rebellious pop music has got a lot of credibility. There's a book called "A Century of Spin" all about the PR industry and how it works through organisations that sound like worker's groups or concerned citizen groups but they are just corporate hack entities. If these were easy enough to create in the pre-internet days, just think how much easier it is to do now.

mark
Our ruling elite has run out of places to loot.
Unfortunately those pesky Russkies/ Chinks/ Eye-ranians won't play ball any more.
So they have to cannibalise their own societies, eat their own tail and loot their own countries instead.
Wilmers31
For a one-son family no reason is good enough for war.

Since 'the pill' people adapt their family size to their financial or other means. This results in one-son families at a significant percentage. Russia is quite an example. Due to their housing restrictions they had (have) small families. When I heard in 1982 how distraught Soviet mothers were who had to bury welded zinc coffins (coming from Afghanistan) I knew the Soviet Union was on borrowed time – and then they threw the whole system out.

"But it is too cowardly, too spoiled to risk the lives of its soldiers." No, mothers do not like to see their one son used for war, war that serves the big corporations and not the people who are told it is their fight.

[Aug 29, 2019] Suddenly, Western "Regime" Changes Keep Failing by Andre Vltchek

that's not true. West stored in Ukraine, argentina and Bnrasil to name a few. and it managed to create troubles for China in Hong Cong and paralyze Venezuela.
In addition the USA is hell-bent on regime change in Iran and Russia.
Notable quotes:
"... Why everyone on this site thinks the massive power vacuum created by the fall of the Imperial West will be filled by China and Russia filling the world with peaceful rainbows and unicorns. ..."
www.unz.com

It used to be done regularly and it worked: The West identified a country as its enemy, unleashed its professional propaganda against it, then administered a series of sanctions, starving and murdering children, the elderly and other vulnerable groups. If the country did not collapse within months or just couple of years, the bombing would begin.

And the nation, totally shaken, in pain, and in disarray, would collapse like a house of cards, once the first NATO boots hit its ground.

Such scenarios were re-enacted, again and again, from Yugoslavia to Iraq.

But suddenly, something significant has happened. This horrific lawlessness, this chaos stopped; was deterred.

The West keeps using the same tactics, it tries to terrorize independent-minded countries, to frighten people into submission, to overthrow what it defines as 'regimes', but its power, its monstrously destructive power has all of a sudden become ineffective.

It hits, and the attacked nation shakes, screams, sheds blood, but keeps standing, keeps proudly erect.

*

What we are experiencing is a great moment in human history. Imperialism has not yet been defeated, but it is losing its global grip on power.

Now we have to clearly understand 'Why?', so we can continue our struggle, with even greater determination, with even greater effectiveness.

First of all, by now we know that the West cannot fight. It can spend trillions on 'defense', it can build nuclear bombs, 'smart missiles' and strategic warplanes. But it is too cowardly, too spoiled to risk the lives of its soldiers.

It either kills remotely, or by using regional mercenaries. Whenever it becomes clear that the presence of its troops would be required, it backs up.

Secondly, it, the West, is totally horrified of the fact that there are now two super-powerful countries – China and Russia – which are unwilling to abandon their allies. Washington and London do all they can to smear Russia and to intimidate China.

Russia is being provoked continuously: by propaganda, by military bases, sanctions and by new and newer bizarre mass media inventions that depict it as the villain in all imaginable circumstances.

China has been provoked practically and insanely, 'on all fronts' – from Taiwan, Hong Kong, Tibet and the so-called 'Uyghur Issue', to trade.

Any strategy that could weaken these two countries, is applied. Yet, Russia and China do not crumble. They do not surrender. And they do not abandon their friends. Instead, they are building great railroads in Africa and Asia, they educate people from almost all poor and desperate countries, and stand by those who are being terrorized by both North America and Europe.

Thirdly, all the countries in the world are now clearly aware of what would happen to them, if they give up and get 'liberated' by the Western empire. Iraq, Honduras, Indonesia, Libya and Afghanistan, are the 'best' examples.

Submitting themselves to the West, countries can only expect misery, absolute collapse and the ruthless extraction of their resources. The poorest country in Asia – Afghanistan – has totally collapsed under NATO occupation.

The suffering and pain of the Afghan and Iraqi people is very well known to the citizens of Iran and Venezuela. They are not giving up, because no matter how tough their life is under sanctions and the West-administered terror, they are well-aware of the fact that things could get worse, much worse, if their countries were to be occupied and governed by the Washington and London-injected maniacs.

And everyone knows the fate of the people living in Palestine or Gollan Heights, places which have been overrun by the closest ally of the West in the Middle East, Israel.

*

Of course, there are other reasons why the West cannot get any of its adversaries to kneel.

One is – that the toughest ones are left. Russia, Cuba, China, North Korea (DPRK), Iran, Syria and Venezuela are not going to run away from the battlefield. These are the most determined nations on earth. These are the countries that have already lost thousands, millions, even tens of millions of their people, in the fight against Western imperialism and colonialism.

If one is following the latest attacks of the West carefully, the scenario is pathetic, almost grotesque: Washington and often the EU, too, are trying hard; they are hitting, they are spending billions of dollars, using the local mercenaries (or call it 'local opposition'), and then they quickly withdraw after wretched but anticipated defeat.

So far, Venezuela has survived. Syria survived. Iran survived. China is fighting horrible Western-backed subversions, but it is proudly surviving. Russia is standing tall.

This is a tremendous moment in human history. For the first time, Western imperialism is being not only defeated, but fully unveiled and humiliated. Many are now laughing at it, openly.

But we should not celebrate, yet. We should understand what and why this is happening, and then continue fighting. There are many, many battles ahead us. But we are on the right track.

Let them try. We know how to fight. We know how to prevail. We have already fought fascism, in many of its forms. We know what freedom is. Their 'freedom' is not our freedom. Their 'liberty' is not our liberty. What they call 'democracy' is not how we want our people to rule and to be ruled. Let them go away; we, our people, do not want them!

They cannot overthrow our systems, because they are, precisely our systems! Systems that we want, that our people want; systems we are ready to fight and die for!

First published by New Eastern Outlook
Facebook Twitter Reddit Pinterest WhatsApp vKontakte Email
Andre Vltchek
Andre Vltchek is a philosopher, novelist, filmmaker and investigative journalist. He has covered wars and conflicts in dozens of countries. Three of his latest books are Revolutionary Optimism, Western Nihilism , a revolutionary novel "Aurora" and a bestselling work of political non-fiction: "Exposing Lies Of The Empire" . View his other books here. Watch Rwanda Gambit , his groundbreaking documentary about Rwanda and DRCongo and his film/dialogue with Noam Chomsky "On Western Terrorism" . Vltchek presently resides in East Asia and the Middle East, and continues to work around the world. He can be reached through his website and his Twitter. Filed under: conflict zones , empire watch , latest , Russia , Syria , United States Tagged with: "third way" , andre vltchek , china , imperialism , Iran , russia , venezuela by Andre Vltchek

Andre Vltchek is a philosopher, novelist, filmmaker and investigative journalist. He has covered wars and conflicts in dozens of countries. Three of his latest books are Revolutionary Optimism, Western Nihilism , a revolutionary novel "Aurora" and a bestselling work of political non-fiction: "Exposing Lies Of The Empire" . View his other books here. Watch Rwanda Gambit , his groundbreaking documentary about Rwanda and DRCongo and his film/dialogue with Noam Chomsky "On Western Terrorism" . Vltchek presently resides in East Asia and the Middle East, and continues to work around the world. He can be reached through his website and his Twitter. can you spare $1.00 a month to support independent media

OffGuardian does not accept advertising or sponsored content. We have no large financial backers. We are not funded by any government or NGO. Donations from our readers is our only means of income. Even the smallest amount of support is hugely appreciated.


Jack Leon
Why everyone on this site thinks the massive power vacuum created by the fall of the Imperial West will be filled by China and Russia filling the world with peaceful rainbows and unicorns.

... ... ...

BigB
I might add – following yesterdays comment getting the usual treatment for stating brute economic realities – that the globalised economy being a dollarised one is not something you can have an opinion about. It is a fact. That so many can hold a contrafactual opinion above fact can only be due to economic illiteracy. Willfully held cherished opinion elevated despite the fact.

Which could be more excusable if we had not had the ultimate in living proof of economic reality within recent living memory. If the global economic system was not largely dollarised (to 60% of the global Reserve): then a relatively minor mortgage crisis (or "savings glut") could not possibly have become global and extending for over a decade to date. There is just no way that China and the rest of the world could be pulled in a relatively small perturbation in the value of the dollar. It is proof positive of interlinking – the fact that the global financial crisis was global.

There are no separate systems. It is an extreme failure of economic intelligence to predicate otherwise. If not through economic illiteracy: then through false memory syndrome! FFS: it was only twelve years ago that the system crashed. The interlinking is EVEN MORE integrated now. A loss of confidence or 'moral contagion' will flash around the globe in close to real time. To posit differential 'systems to fight and die for' in the face of economic and historical realism requires a monumental feat of reality aversion and denial. Andre has lost his grip on economic reality. Don't naively follow him.

vexarb
BigB, I think you are right to remind us that Love of Money is the Root of All Evil, but wrong to criticize someone who rejoices when he sees that some branches of that Money Tree of Evil are withering away. The end of Hitler's regime change plan for Europe was an occasion for rejoicing; even though it did not mean the end of Capitalist resource wars, at least a relatively united Europe enjoyed 40 years of relative peace and socialist prosperity. The end of NATZO's regime change plan for socialist Syria and communist Iran may likewise herald a period of relative unity, peace and socialist prosperity for the ME. That is one reason to cheer; two other reasons are the re-emergence of China and Russia into a period of relative security and prosperity. So a big three cheers are justified.

I remember, when socialist Syria began its resistance to AZC terrorism on Syrian soil, some Trots complained that it was not correct to defend Syria on the ground because the real enemy was global Capitalism up there in the sky.

vexarb
https://www.asiatimes.com/2019/08/article/lula-from-jail-tells-world-hes-back-in-the-game/https://www.asiatimes.com/2019/08/article/lula-from-jail-tells-world-hes-back-in-the-game/
BigB
Well, yeah: there is a relative geopolitical stability with the reshaping of a multipolar world. But this is undermined by the underlying geoeconomic fragility and instability arising from globalisation and a contracting global economy. So it is as a burning mirage shimmering in a heat haze above the desert of humanities impoverishment.

We all like a story we can rejoice in: a mythic tale of a kingdom of evil and a kingdom of good battling in a primordial duel to the death. In the fantasy story light always overcomes the kingdom of evils dark destruction: so we naturally align with the forces of good heroifying the mythic contenders and denigrating the primal chaotic forces of evil. But for all the relevance this has: we might as well cast Trump as Voldemort and turn to the Harry Potter novels for economic literacy.

To coin a phrase you favour: meanwhile, back in the real world The dollar and the yuan are inextricably and intentionally linked in value. They have been since 1994: 'hard pegged' to 2005; and 'soft pegged' ever since. Do not believe the Chinese denials. The value is set daily: and only a 2% fluctuation is allowed either way. This is economic reality. There are no separate systems that are not underpinned by the value of the yuan: that is in turn determined by the floating value of the dollar. It is a form of criminal negligence to not know this basic fact: and concoct a poorly characterised quasi-mythological fantasy narrative contrafactually.

In the most basic sense: if the dollar and yuan are relatively priced – there are no separate systems. The value of the yuan follows the value of the dollar. Which has been a weakening trend: culminating in the yuan being at its lowest rate since before the GFC.

Absolutely anyone can check out this fact: but they don't. When they encounter it: they deny it. That's because the in stories we tell ourselves – it is the coherence of the narrative construction that matters not the facts. The whole facts are sacred thing is also contrafactual: the story is sacred. Because we identify with our inner story – facts like the dollar/yuan peg are ignored. Andre is the JK Rowling of economic reality. Only his plotlines and script are not nearly as inventive. In the real world – global capitalism is the dark destructive force only, there is no alternative. This is Capitalist Realism. If we as a humanity want to create an alternative: we need to face the hard economic reality. Fantasy narratives are just a faery tale distraction from that. Myths that mean that the dark destructivism carries on unresisted while we spin a good, if ultimately unbelievable, yarn.

vexarb
BigB, many thanks for your reply, and I always give you a plus for your clarity in exposing a truth which invites rejection because it is both obscure and unpleasant. And I by no means include you among those Soros-funded Trots who "attack from the Left". But I am a simple minded person, and believe we have a right to rejoice in our little victories, even if we do not slay Mammon himself. And there is the ROI to consider – the cumulative Return on Investment. Perhaps Mammon will not be killed in some final Apocalyptic battle between Powers and Principalities in the Heavens: perhaps Mammon will die the death of a thousand cuts; perhaps the branches of the Evil Money Tree with bleed their sap and wither away, one little victory at a time from the little people in Syria, Lebanon, Iran Russia and China -- for whom already we have given 3 cheers.

Andre also mentions some little victories in America: for example, Cuba and Venezuela. To which we might add back Brazil and give a 4th cheer -- because Lula's back in town!

https://www.asiatimes.com/2019/08/article/lula-from-jail-tells-world-hes-back-in-the-game/

0use4msm
The bogeyman strategy only works if there is a clear a simple target to bang on on relentlessly. For a while it was Russia, but now Washington can't make it's mind up whether it's North Korea, Syria, Russia, Venezuela, Iran or China, and so it keeps flip-flopping it's focus. There's isn't even a shared ideology that connects these rogue states, other than their very natural desire for sovereignty. Even the public that buys into the mainstream media's framing of the narrowtive is intuitively sensing a lack of conviction.
nwwoods
"Narrowtive" ..nice turn of phrase
Aiwl
".. these rogue states,"
You meant 'accused of being rogue' by fascist regimes (i.e. US/UK/KSA/Australia etc.. ), right?

[Aug 26, 2019] Deeper meanings of the Hong Kong protests> by Prof. Anis H. Bajrektarević

Soviet Union was a theocratic state. The fact that it was simultaneously military empire is only of secondary importance. When Bolshevik's ideology collapsed after the WWII (despite the fact that USSR emerged as the victor), the writing was on the wall as there was no force able to which stand nationalism, fueled by West financial injections and support. nationalism turn the USSR apart. Attempt to colonize the post Soviet state and convert it in a new Latin America by the USA and other western countries was only partially successful. Russia despite huge losses due to drunk Yeltsin period when briefly it was a colony of the USA escaped the clutches and due to economic rape experienced became a staunch opponent of the US imperialism. Which drives the US neoliberal elite crazy if we judge it by the level of anti-Russian hysteria in the USA now (although there are some domestic motive to fuel anti-Russian hysteria -- it helps to unite the fractured society using the fake threat from the "enemy" and thus to patch cracks in the neoliberal facede of the US society)
The USA now is experiencing the situation somewhat similar to the situation of the USSR in 70th or early 80th. Neoliberal idology collapsed in 2008. That means that forces that keep the US global financial empire together with the network of treaties and US financial dominance weakered and nationalism started to show its face prompting country after country engage in attempts to diminish the USA influence and/or revoke vassal status.
The US neoliberal elite now is so de-generated that in comparison the level of degeneration of Soviet Politburo under Brezhnev looks pretty mild. And that also speed up the demise of the US controlled global neoliberal empire. Trump launched trade war with China without understanding possible consequences for the world economic order and the US empire and the situation might go out of control, when the USA will be ostracized fist in "China friendly space" (which BTW is probably half of total global population and then one by one among former vassals in EU and Latin America.
Neoliberals in Congress slowly by surely work on dismantling of the USA neoliberal empire not because they want such an outcome but because they do not understand what are the steps that might help to prevent it other then a switch to gangster capitalism. Add to this possible fracturing of the country (God knows what will happen when the dollar loses the reserve currency status)
In any case this is a slow process. It took the USSR 46 years to collapse after the victory in WWII. It might take even longer for the USA empire to collapse. Much depends on the speed of oil depletion.
Notable quotes:
"... The Soviet Union – much as (the pre-Deng's) China itself – was far more of a classic continental military empire (overtly brutal; rigid, authoritative, anti-individual, apparent, secretive), while the US was more a financial-trading empire (covertly coercive; hierarchical, yet asocial, exploitive, pervasive, polarizing). ..."
"... However, the US imperium managed to survive and to outlive the Soviets. How? The United States, with its financial capital (or an outfoxing illusion of it), evolved into a debtor empire through the Wall Street guaranties. ..."
"... These two pillars of the US might from the East coast (the US Treasury/Wall Street and Pentagon) together with the two pillars of the West coast – both financed and amplified by the US dollar, and spread through the open sea-routs (Silicone Valley and Hollywood), are an essence of the US posture. ..."
"... This very nature of power explains why the Americans have missed to take the mankind into completely other direction; towards the non-confrontational, decarbonized, de-monetized/de-financialized and de-psychologized, the self-realizing and green humankind. ..."
"... Sadly enough, that was not the first missed opportunity for the US to soften and delay its forthcoming, imminent multidimensional imperial retreat. The very epilogue of the WWII meant a full security guaranty for the US: Geo-economically – 54% of anything manufactured in the world was carrying the Made in USA label, and geostrategically – the US had uninterruptedly enjoyed nearly a decade of the 'nuclear monopoly'. ..."
"... Look the map, at Russia or China and their packed surroundings. The US is blessed with its insular position, by neighboring oceans. All that should harbor tranquility, peace and prosperity, foresightedness. ..."
"... Indeed, no successful and enduring empire does merely rely on coercion, be it abroad or at home. The grand design of every empire in past rested on a skillful calibration between obedience and initiative – at home, and between bandwagoning and engagement – abroad. ..."
"... To sum up; After the collapse of the Soviet Union, Americans accelerated expansion while waiting for (real or imagined) adversaries to further decline, 'liberalize' and bandwagon behind the US. ..."
"... When the Soviets lost their own indigenous ideological matrix and maverick confrontational stance, and when the US dominated West missed to triumph although winning the Cold War, how to expect from the imitator to score the lasting moral, or even a momentary economic victory? ..."
"... The Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) is what the most attribute as an instrument of the Chinese planetary posture. Chinese leaders promised massive infrastructure projects all around by burning trillions of dollars. ..."
"... In 9 more days, high school begins in China, so many of the thrill-seekers will be in class, while the US-paid street criminals will be exposed and ridiculed.. Hopefully locked up for a very long time.. ..."
"... When communism collapsed in 1989, a whole class of smug self satisfied individuals like Fukuyama and the Neocons and Ziocons feeding off them patted themselves on the pack, assured of their complete moral superiority and unlimited virtue. They had won, and could now throw their weight around the planet however they pleased. ..."
"... People who were a little bit more far sighted subsequently concluded that communism collapsed FIRST. The prevailing system in the Anglozionist empire just took longer to collapse. Our system of crony capitalism, crapitalism, parasitic financial capitalism, looting kleptocracy, managed to endure for another 20 years before it collapsed in turn over 2007-8, never to recover. It has remained on life support ever since, sustaining its zombie existence through the printing of tens of trillions of toilet paper money backed by nothing but thin air, negative interest rates, and draconian austerity ravaging societies and entire countries. ..."
"... The world could have been re ordered for the better after 1989. Genuine cooperation between great powers. Wide ranging disarmament. A new security structure for all the countries of the planet. The dismantling of relics like NATO. The resolution of previously intractable conflicts. A much better deal for developing countries with new terms of trade. The needs of billions of people given the priority they deserved. This was all up for grabs. But the opportunity for a better world was thrown away and will never return. ..."
"... Instead, militarism and aggression were given their head. NATO expanded deep into the former Soviet Union in breach of all the undertakings that were given to the contrary. Russia was comprehensively looted and reduced to destitution and misery. One country after another was invaded and destroyed. Millions died and tens of millions immiserated. The whole planet was destabilised. Trillions were squandered that could have been devoted to productive purposes and real human needs. ..."
"... Successful use of propaganda as a means of social control requires a number of conditions: The will to use it, the skills to produce the propaganda, the means to deiiseminate it; and the use of significant symbols with real power over emotional reactions – ideally symbols of the sacred and satanic (Light vs DARK) ..."
"... Nice essay! Indeed, the US empire has survived [hopefully for not much longer] by swindling, and, fraudulent treaties. One critical aspect of the widespread of US influence is SPYING! Highly likely, most of what the US achieved would not have been possible without the spying apparatus that have infiltrated every corner of the world. Of course, spying did not start with the Internet, although now it is made 'natural'. ..."
"... Their education is first and foremost about recognizing the importance of the existing hierarchy and knowing their place in it. Any facts or ideas they learn after this are recognized, understood and acted upon within the context of performing that role. ..."
"... Most of the rewards and punishments of being a middle class professional are not related to being right or wrong, justified or not, honest or dishonest. They are to do with being obedient or not, disciplined or indisciplined, "normal" or eccentric. ..."
consortiumnews.com
Aug 23, 2019 | off-guardian.org

Does our history only appear overheated, while it is essentially calmly predetermined? Is it directional or conceivable, dialectic and eclectic or cyclical, and therefore cynical? Surely, our history warns. Does it also provide for a hope? Hence, what is in front of us: destiny or future?

Theory loves to teach us that extensive debates on what kind of economic system is most conductive to human wellbeing is what consumed most of our civilizational vertical.

However, our history has a different say: It seems that the manipulation of the global political economy – far more than the introduction of ideologies – is the dominant and arguably more durable way that human elites usually conspired to build or break civilizations, as planned projects.

Somewhere down the process, it deceived us, becoming the self-entrapment. How?

*

One of the biggest (nearly schizophrenic) dilemmas of liberalism, ever since David Hume and Adam Smith, was an insight into reality: Whether the world is essentially Hobbesian or Kantian. As postulated, the main task of any liberal state is to enable and maintain wealth of its nation, which of course rests upon wealthy individuals inhabiting the particular state.

That imperative brought about another dilemma: if wealthy individual, the state will rob you, but in absence of it, the pauperized masses will mob you.

The invisible hand of Smith's followers have found the satisfactory answer – sovereign debt. That 'invention' meant: relatively strong central government of the state. Instead of popular control through the democratic checks-&-balance mechanism, such a state should be rather heavily indebted. Debt – firstly to local merchants, than to foreigners – is a far more powerful deterrent, as it resides outside the popular check domain.

With such a mixed blessing, no empire can easily demonetize its legitimacy, and abandon its hierarchical but invisible and unconstitutional controls. This is how a debtor empire was born. A blessing or totalitarian curse?

Let us briefly examine it.

The Soviet Union – much as (the pre-Deng's) China itself – was far more of a classic continental military empire (overtly brutal; rigid, authoritative, anti-individual, apparent, secretive), while the US was more a financial-trading empire (covertly coercive; hierarchical, yet asocial, exploitive, pervasive, polarizing).

On opposite sides of the globe and cognition, to each other they remained enigmatic, mysterious and incalculable: Bear of permafrost vs. Fish of the warm seas. Sparta vs. Athens. Rome vs. Phoenicia However, common for the both was a super-appetite for omnipresence. Along with the price to pay for it.

Consequently, the Soviets went bankrupt by mid 1980s – they cracked under its own weight, imperially overstretched. So did the Americans – the 'white man burden' fractured them already by the Vietnam war, with the Nixon shock only officializing it.

However, the US imperium managed to survive and to outlive the Soviets. How? The United States, with its financial capital (or an outfoxing illusion of it), evolved into a debtor empire through the Wall Street guaranties.

Titanium-made Sputnik vs. gold mine of printed-paper

Nothing epitomizes this better than the words of the longest serving US Federal Reserve's boss, Alan Greenspan, who famously quoted J.B. Connally to then French President Jacques Chirac: "True, the dollar is our currency, but your problem" .

Hegemony vs. hegemoney .

House of Cards

Conventional economic theory teaches us that money is a universal equivalent to all goods. Historically, currencies were a space and time-related, to say locality-dependent. However, like no currency ever before, the US dollar became – past the WWII – the universal equivalent to all other moneys of the world.

According to history of currencies, the core component of the non-precious metals' money is a so-called promissory note – intangible belief that, by any given point in future, a particular shiny paper (self-styled as money) will be smoothly exchanged for real goods.

Thus, roughly speaking, money is nothing else but a civilizational construct about imagined/projected tomorrow – that the next day (which nobody has ever seen in the history of humankind, but everybody operates with) definitely comes (i), and that this tomorrow will certainly be a better day then our yesterday or even our today (ii).

This and similar types of collective constructs (horizontal and vertical) over our social contracts hold society together as much as its economy keeps it alive and evolving. Hence, it is money that powers economy, but our blind faith in constructed (imagined) tomorrows and its alleged certainty is what empowers money.

Clearly, the universal equivalent of all equivalents – the US dollar – follows the same pattern: Bold and widely accepted promise. What does the US dollar promise when there is no gold cover attached to it ever since the time of Nixon shock of 1971?

Pentagon promises that the oceanic sea-lanes will remain opened (read: controlled by the US Navy), pathways unhindered, and that the most traded world's commodity – oil, will be delivered.

So, it is not a crude or its delivery what is a cover to the US dollar – it is a promise that oil of tomorrow will be deliverable. That is a real might of the US dollar, which in return finances Pentagon's massive expenditures and shoulders its supremacy.

Admired and feared, the Pentagon further fans our planetary belief in tomorrow's deliverability – if we only keep our faith in dollar (and hydrocarbons' energized economy), and so on and on in perpetuated circle of mutual reinforcements.

These two pillars of the US might from the East coast (the US Treasury/Wall Street and Pentagon) together with the two pillars of the West coast – both financed and amplified by the US dollar, and spread through the open sea-routs (Silicone Valley and Hollywood), are an essence of the US posture.

This very nature of power explains why the Americans have missed to take the mankind into completely other direction; towards the non-confrontational, decarbonized, de-monetized/de-financialized and de-psychologized, the self-realizing and green humankind.

In short, to turn history into a moral success story. They had such a chance when, past the Gorbachev's unconditional surrender of the Soviet bloc, and the Deng's Copernicus-shift of China, the US – unconstrained as a lonely superpower – solely dictated terms of reference; our common destiny and direction/s to our future/s.

Winner is rarely a game-changer

Sadly enough, that was not the first missed opportunity for the US to soften and delay its forthcoming, imminent multidimensional imperial retreat. The very epilogue of the WWII meant a full security guaranty for the US: Geo-economically – 54% of anything manufactured in the world was carrying the Made in USA label, and geostrategically – the US had uninterruptedly enjoyed nearly a decade of the 'nuclear monopoly'.

Up to this very day, the US scores the biggest number of N-tests conducted, the largest stockpile of nuclear weaponry, and it represents the only power ever deploying this 'ultimate weapon' on other nation. To complete the irony, Americans enjoy geographic advantage like no other empire before. Save the US, as Ikenberry notes:

" every major power in the world lives in a crowded geopolitical neighborhood where shifts in power routinely provoke counterbalancing".

Look the map, at Russia or China and their packed surroundings. The US is blessed with its insular position, by neighboring oceans. All that should harbor tranquility, peace and prosperity, foresightedness.

Indeed, no successful and enduring empire does merely rely on coercion, be it abroad or at home. The grand design of every empire in past rested on a skillful calibration between obedience and initiative – at home, and between bandwagoning and engagement – abroad.

In XXI century, one wins when one convinces not when one coerces. Hence, if unable to escape its inner logics and deeply-rooted appeal of confrontational nostalgia, the prevailing archrival is only a winner, rarely a game-changer.

To sum up; After the collapse of the Soviet Union, Americans accelerated expansion while waiting for (real or imagined) adversaries to further decline, 'liberalize' and bandwagon behind the US.

Expansion is the path to security dictatum only exacerbated the problems afflicting the Pax Americana. That is how the capability of the US to maintain its order started to erode faster than the capacity of its opponents to challenge it. A classical imperial self-entrapment!

The repeated failure to notice and recalibrate its imperial retreat brought the painful hangovers to Washington by the last presidential elections. Inability to manage the rising costs of sustaining the imperial order only increased the domestic popular revolt and political pressure to abandon its 'mission' altogether. Perfectly hitting the target to miss everything else

Hence, Americans are not fixing the world any more. They are only managing its decline. Look at their (winner) footprint in former Yugoslavia, Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya and Syria – to mention but a few.

*

When the Soviets lost their own indigenous ideological matrix and maverick confrontational stance, and when the US dominated West missed to triumph although winning the Cold War, how to expect from the imitator to score the lasting moral, or even a momentary economic victory?

Neither more confrontation and more carbons nor more weaponized trade and traded weapons will save our day. It failed in past, it will fail again any given day.

Interestingly, China opposed the 1st World, left the 2nd in rift, and ever since Bandung of 1955 it neither won over nor (truly) joined the 3rd Way.

Today, many see it as a main contestant. But, where is a lasting success?

The Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) is what the most attribute as an instrument of the Chinese planetary posture. Chinese leaders promised massive infrastructure projects all around by burning trillions of dollars.

Still, numbers are more moderate. As the recent The second BRI Summit has shown, so far, Chinese companies had invested $90 [billions] worldwide. Seems, neither People's Republic is as rich as many (wish to) think nor it will be able to finance its promised projects without seeking for a global private capital. Such a capital – if ever – will not flow without conditionalities.

The Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) and the BRICS – or 'New Development' – Bank have some $150 billion at hand, and the Silk Road Infrastructure Fund (SRIF) has up to $40 billion. Chinese state and semi-private companies can access – according to the OECD estimates – just another $600 billion (much of it tight) from the home, state-controlled financial sector.

That means that China runs short on the BRI deliveries worldwide. Ergo, either bad news to the (BRI) world or the conditionalities' constrained China.

Greening international relations along with a greening of economy – geopolitical and environmental understanding, de-acidification and relaxation is the only way out.

That necessitates both at once: less confrontation over the art-of-day technology and their monopolies' redistribution (as preached by the Sino-American high priests of globalization) as well as the resolute work on the so-called Tesla-ian implosive/fusion-holistic systems (including free-energy technologies; carbon-sequestration; antigravity and self-navigational solutions; bioinformatics and nanorobotics).

More of initiative than of obedience (including more public control over data hoovering). More effort to excellence (creation) than struggle for preeminence (partition).

Finally, no global leader has ever in history emerged from a shaky and distrustful neighborhood, or by offering a little bit more of the same in lieu of an innovative technological advancement. (Eg. many see the Chinese 5G as an illiberal innovation, which may end up servicing authoritarianism, anywhere.

And indeed, the AI deep learning inspired by biological neurons (neural science) including its three methods: supervised, unsupervised and reinforced learning can end up used for the digital authoritarianism, predictive policing and manufactured social governance based on the bonus-malus behavioral social credits.)

Ergo, it all starts from within, from at home. Without support from a home base (including that of Hong Kong, Xinjiang and Tibet), there is no game changer. China's home is Asia. Its size and its centrality along with its impressive output is constraining it enough.

Hence, it is not only a new, non-imitative, turn of technology what is needed. Without truly and sincerely embracing mechanisms such as the NaM, ASEAN and SAARC (eventually even the OSCE) and the main champions of multilateralism in Asia, those being India Indonesia and Japan first of all, China has no future of what is planetary awaited – the third force, a game-changer, lasting visionary and trusted global leader.

Post Scriptum: To varying degrees, but all throughout a premodern and modern history, nearly every world's major foreign policy originator was dependent (and still depends) on what happens in, and to, Russia. It is not only a size, but also centrality of Russia that matters. It is as much (if not even more), as it is an omnipresence of the US and as it is a hyperproduction of the PR China.

Ergo, it is an uninterrupted flow of manufactured goods to the whole world, it is balancing of the oversized and centrally positioned one, and it is the ability to controllably destruct the way in and insert itself of the peripheral one. The oscillatory interplay of these three is what characterizes our days.

Professor Anis H. Bajrektarević is chairperson and professor in international law and global political studies, Vienna, Austria. He has authored six books (for American and European publishers) and numerous articles on, mainly, geopolitics energy and technology. His 7th book, From WWI to www. – Europe and the World 1918-2018 was to released in December.


Monobazeus

https://sputniknews.com/world/201908241076626482-greenland-us-consulate-denmark/

The US is opening a consulate in Greenland.!

Colour Change Greenland has officially begun.!

eddie
Memo to author: try an analogy with Macau; China's other SAR (special administrative region); the 2nd wealthiest city in the world, and the world leader in gambling profit.. From 05:30 until 23:00, Mainlanders flock into the City, 7 days a week; like an entire country migrating daily.. No protests there, unlike their sinking cousins across the Bay in Hong Kong..

The author suggests that Xinjiang and Tibet be included as somehow vital to China's dynamic progress, when they are empty of resources, and only need to be stabilized as a transit point for the BRI, which is progressing very well indeed.. People here think of it as the New Silk Road, not BRI..

The author is welcome to visit next year, when the 600 k.p.h. Maglev (magnetic levitation) train enters operation, and compare it to say, Amtrak in America, which is like a system from an 1860's cowboy and Indian film..

In 9 more days, high school begins in China, so many of the thrill-seekers will be in class, while the US-paid street criminals will be exposed and ridiculed.. Hopefully locked up for a very long time..

Jack Leon
Hopefully locked up for a very long time..

Ahh the blessed joys of absolute power literally controlling every aspect of peoples thoughts and daily lives, can't wait to move there. People in Macau cannot be black holed into a Chinese gulag that's exactly why it is so successful, no one with any money goes to gamble and party in Beijing. Mainlanders flock there to escape the prison state that is modern China.

"Please move to the back of the Maglev or you will be punished. Discredited Entities are not welcome on this ride."

mark
When communism collapsed in 1989, a whole class of smug self satisfied individuals like Fukuyama and the Neocons and Ziocons feeding off them patted themselves on the pack, assured of their complete moral superiority and unlimited virtue. They had won, and could now throw their weight around the planet however they pleased.

People who were a little bit more far sighted subsequently concluded that communism collapsed FIRST. The prevailing system in the Anglozionist empire just took longer to collapse. Our system of crony capitalism, crapitalism, parasitic financial capitalism, looting kleptocracy, managed to endure for another 20 years before it collapsed in turn over 2007-8, never to recover. It has remained on life support ever since, sustaining its zombie existence through the printing of tens of trillions of toilet paper money backed by nothing but thin air, negative interest rates, and draconian austerity ravaging societies and entire countries.

The world could have been re ordered for the better after 1989. Genuine cooperation between great powers. Wide ranging disarmament. A new security structure for all the countries of the planet. The dismantling of relics like NATO. The resolution of previously intractable conflicts. A much better deal for developing countries with new terms of trade. The needs of billions of people given the priority they deserved. This was all up for grabs. But the opportunity for a better world was thrown away and will never return.

Instead, militarism and aggression were given their head. NATO expanded deep into the former Soviet Union in breach of all the undertakings that were given to the contrary. Russia was comprehensively looted and reduced to destitution and misery. One country after another was invaded and destroyed. Millions died and tens of millions immiserated. The whole planet was destabilised. Trillions were squandered that could have been devoted to productive purposes and real human needs.

We now face disaster on multiple fronts. The very real possibility of war on a scale never seen before in human history, leading to human extinction. Financial, economic and social collapse dwarfing the experience of 1929. Political chaos and upheaval. All of this completely unnecessary.

mark
The US National Debt Clock is whizzing round at $25,000 a second. The current budget deficit is $1,175 billion. Trump is trying to loot the rest of the planet to get himself out of the economic hole he is in.
Jack Leon
The world could have been re ordered for the better after 1989. Genuine cooperation between great powers. Wide ranging disarmament."

All very true and concise, but do you truly believe that had the USSR won the cold war and the USA gone bankrupt, they would have even extended the olive branch the other way? Although impossible to definitively say, my guess is yeah right the Soviets would make Perestroika look like a bargain. We'd be wearing shitty Communist clothes, eating Borscht and watching as the party ravaged every resource for the Soviet oligarchs.

Capitalism is ths best system for economic growth, undeniably proven over and over, problem is, your right we live in a corporate communist state, which destroyed the greatest economic system ever created. And I would also agree 2007 was the official end of our great Republic although building for decades to that point.

vexarb
"the main champions of multilateralism in Asia, those being India Indonesia and Japan first of all"

Read that slowly and all will become crystal clear -- despite the author's Germanic gnomic English.

vexarb
Sorry, I was being pretty gnomic myself. The Herr Professor is saying that the Chief Champions of Multi-Lateralism are countries which are either allied to the Empire (India) or have been crushed by the Empire (Indonesia) or both (Japan).
TheThinker
BigB – I wrote this over on the thread a couple of articles back in a reply to George. But, it seemed pertinent to what you say above, perhaps even reinforces it. As I am double posting, Admin, feel free to delete if it is not useful to the discussion.

I've been reading a collection of essays by a Australian guy called Careys – on Democracy and propaganda, fully named, Taking the Risk out of Democracy. He died unpublished but his papers were collated in a book after. Here some bits from my read that were interesting.

In Jan 1994 David Hume reflecting on the consequences of the recent state terrorist projects that Washington had organised and directed in its Central American domains, with the Church a prime target. They took special note of 'what weight' the culture of terror has had in domestically the expectations of the majority vis-a-vis alternatives different for the powerful; the destruction of hope, they recognised, is one of the greatest achievements of the free world doctrine of 'low intensity conflict' what is called 'terror' when conducted by official enemies. Noam Chomsky 1994

Propaganda is the management of collective attitudes by the manipulation of significant symbolism collective attitudes are amenable to many modes of alteration . intimidation intimidation .economic coercion drill

But their arrangement and rearrangement occurs principally under the importers of significant symbolism and the technique of using significant symbols for this purpose is propaganda. Lasswell, Bardson & Janowitz 1953

Successful use of propaganda as a means of social control requires a number of conditions: The will to use it, the skills to produce the propaganda, the means to deiiseminate it; and the use of significant symbols with real power over emotional reactions – ideally symbols of the sacred and satanic (Light vs DARK)

A society or culture which is disposed to view the world in Manichean terms will be more vulnerable to control by propaganda. Conversely, a society where propaganda is extensively employed as a means of control, will tend to retain a Manichean world view, a view dominated by symbols and visions of the sacred and satanic.

Manichean – an adherent of the dualistic systems (dual = 2) religious systems of Manes, a combination of Gnostic, Buddiasm, Zoroastrianism and various other elements with a doctrine of a conflict between the Light and Dark, matter being regarded as dark and light / good vs evil – love vs hate

The 'public mind' was recognised long ago by corporate leaders to be 'the only serious danger confronting' their enterprise & major hazards facing industrialists along with the newly realised political power of the masses, which had to be beaten back.

Big Business in the US stated started the Americanise Movement ostensibly to Americanise worker, who was being perceived as being under threat from subversive forces of the Industrial Workers of the world.

what started as a method of controlling the political opinion of immigrant workers quickly turned into a massive program for the thinking of an entire population. One of the most startling examples of the escalation of the whole population in processes of propaganda was how Americanisation Program ( a word which conjures up the 'thought police') came to be transformed into a National Celebration Day for the 4th July, to many of us (Carey's words not mine) it comes as a shock to discover that American Independence Day had it's beginning in a Business led program to control public opinion rather than as a direct expression of a Nation celebrating its historical birth.

Gary Weglarz
("The Soviet Union – much as (the pre-Deng's) China itself – was far more of a classic continental military empire (overtly brutal; rigid, authoritative, anti-individual, apparent, secretive), while the US was more a financial-trading empire (covertly coercive; hierarchical, yet asocial, exploitive, pervasive, polarizing).").

– sorry, but this line left me laughing out loud and gasping for a little air. If the meaning of the term's "covertly coercive" and "exploitive" actually are simply euphemisms to mean things like carpet bombing peasant societies into the 'stone age,' running, training and arming death squads and torture operations decade upon decade, over-throwing democratic populist governments and installing brutal dictators, and organizing and supporting mass murder and torture on an epic scale from Indonesia to Chile to Vietnam to Guatemala, and of course endless others, then yes, I suppose we American's have been "covertly coercive" and "exploitive."

I wonder, however, why such routine U.S. mayhem fails to rise to the level of the former Soviet's "overtly brutal" designation? As usual when I read the world as described by Western "academics" I am confused by the carefully coded language used to describe the absolute amoral brutality of Western empire. But hey, perhaps describing the willful murder of a half-a-million Iraqi children as "worth it," is simply an example of America's "asocial" tendencies rather than of actual barbarity.

wardropper
The worst of it all is that none of it NEEDS to have "meaning".

Another sex scandal, or a bank scandal of huge proportions is plastered all over the media, and, two days later, while people are still trying to digest it with the most superficial thought processes they can muster, we suddenly find we are at war with China, Russia – or Denmark, for that matter

"Oh, we seem to be at war again!", would seem to be the most likely response, while we eagerly await the next scandal

The owners of our media honestly deserve the same end that Goebbels faced , but we share guilt inasfar as we have all-too readily allowed them to confuse our thinking until it isn't even thinking any more, but merely knee-jerk reaction to click-bait.

Junaid
Russian President Vladimir Putin demanded that the Department of Defense, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. New US weapons: how will Russia respond

New US weapons: how will Russia respond

Antonym
Russia's centrality? I wouldn't be fooled by the CIA's apparent obsession with Russia; the rest of the world knows that China is now no. 2. The Chinese have caught up technologically by study and crook, and are financially and population wise much stronger than Russia.

In fact Russian Siberia must look quite juicy for Beijing with all its space and minerals , were it not for those damn old Russian MIRVs.

Note well
Nice essay! Indeed, the US empire has survived [hopefully for not much longer] by swindling, and, fraudulent treaties. One critical aspect of the widespread of US influence is SPYING! Highly likely, most of what the US achieved would not have been possible without the spying apparatus that have infiltrated every corner of the world. Of course, spying did not start with the Internet, although now it is made 'natural'.

SPYING, and the ubiquitousness of it, should be stated every time US influence is mentioned.
Antonym
Why would only growing Indian or Chinese middle classes be cancer? Any greed is cancer, whether from a beggar or a billionaire. be they be India, Chinese, American, British etc.
Fair dinkum
The Western middle class has pushed the planet to the precipice. The 400 million plus Chinese and Indian middle class will bury the world at the bottom of it.
Roland Spansky
Oh give it a rest, Chicken Little. People such as yourself have been squawking about the planet being on the edge of a precipice for – conservatively – the last sixty years. Open your eyes. It's a con. You've been had.
wardropper
It seems to have escaped your attention that the middle classes are the main victims of "austerity" these days. The aim is to wipe them out, and have the 1% vs. the enslaved 99% as the new norm. It would be very uncomfortable to have a flourishing 55% middle class against the 1%, which is why we have austerity in the first place.
As for "deadly cancers", well, we obviously have our own fair share of those, but it so happens that they are not the middle class.
Dominic Berry
Their education is first and foremost about recognizing the importance of the existing hierarchy and knowing their place in it. Any facts or ideas they learn after this are recognized, understood and acted upon within the context of performing that role.

Implicitly anti hierarchical facts provoke a cognitive dissonance which prevents them being recognized, but even when it is recognized as important, not accounted for by the existing procedures, critically important, (e.g., ecological collapse, nuclear weapons, austerity economics,) even when we see that something has to be done, well, "What am I supposed to do?"

Most of the rewards and punishments of being a middle class professional are not related to being right or wrong, justified or not, honest or dishonest. They are to do with being obedient or not, disciplined or indisciplined, "normal" or eccentric.

[Aug 25, 2019] Claiming that the Zionists did 9/11 is ultimately just another way of shutting down rational inquiry

Notable quotes:
"... The game they play is getting easier to fall for and harder to resist. The more you hear those dreary repetitions about Labour anti-Semitism, the more you feel like screaming abuse at "the Jews". And then they have you exactly where they want. Then they can point a finger at you and say (with justification) "Ah! Anti-Semitism!" ..."
"... It would be entirely legitimate to say "the Russians" did it. This wouldn't be racist, or bigoted, or anything else. It wouldn't mean that all 150 million Russians were personally involved, or approved of this action, or played an active part in it, or even that they knew of it or could care less about it. ..."
Aug 25, 2019 | off-guardian.org


mark

9/11 was conceived, written and performed by the Chosen Folk, a large number of dual nationals, with the assistance of a few key goy stooges. It was a Zionist operation from beginning to end, a USS Liberty/ JFK writ large. The same pattern can be seen in every element of the operation. It was carried out by a Mossad network 200 strong. Lucky Larry Silverstein was the man on the ground in charge of the WTC site, and he made billions out of the atrocity. A score of moslem Lee Harvey Oswalds had a walk on part as convenient patsies. There is no "propaganda" involved. Just fact.
OffG
Your squeamish euphemisms notwithstanding, claiming 'the Jews' did 9/11 is ultimately just another way of shutting down rational inquiry. It's obvious to anyone that 'the Jews' as an entire ethnicity did not plan 9/11, any more than 'the Gentiles' or 'the Moslems' or 'the WASPS' did. People are turned away by your simplistic racism and want to look no further.

You could lead with 'Israel did it', or 'Mossad did it' – points you introduce later. But no, to you 'the Jews' did it. All of em. Including mr Cohen three doors down who says hello to you in the street.

You are rational and insightful on many other topics yet become a self-defeating bigot whenever you discuss Jewishness – which is far more often than occasions demand.

George
Plus the fact that blaming "the Jews" is exactly what the propagandists want you to do. (And I refer somewhat vaguely to "propagandists" because I really mean the ruling class, who couldn't care less about ethnicity, religion, race etc. Just as long as the wealthy keep their grip on the media and on society through their wealth.)

The game they play is getting easier to fall for and harder to resist. The more you hear those dreary repetitions about Labour anti-Semitism, the more you feel like screaming abuse at "the Jews". And then they have you exactly where they want. Then they can point a finger at you and say (with justification) "Ah! Anti-Semitism!"

mark
This is a case of setting up a ludicrous straw man.

Suppose for the sake of argument it was established that the Russian state actually did try to kill Skripal. Of course they didn't, but assume they did.

It would be entirely legitimate to say "the Russians" did it. This wouldn't be racist, or bigoted, or anything else. It wouldn't mean that all 150 million Russians were personally involved, or approved of this action, or played an active part in it, or even that they knew of it or could care less about it.

It wouldn't be some kind of racist trope that bus driver Mr. Ivanovich in Novosibirsk was somehow responsible.

Any more than 300 million Americans and 60 million British were personally responsible for the conspiracy to invade Iraq, or Bush's and Blair's criminal war of aggression.

In like manner the 9/11 atrocity was carried out by a few hundred individuals. Mostly Israeli and dual national Americans, and a significant number of Israel First stooge goys serving Zionist interests.

The vast majority of Jews and Israelis in the world played no part at all, and are just passive recipients of the cover conspiracy theories to explain it away.

This is just a smokecreen that is habitually thrown up whenever anyone connects the dots between Silverstein, a 200 strong Mossad ring, Chertoff, and so many others.

crank
I don't think anyone would seriously interpret the statement as meaning every Jewish person in the world was complicit in 9/11. I think OffGuardian Admin know this full well.

They, like many in the 9/11 truth community – let's face it – cannot allow an honest dispassionate consideration of the facts regarding 9/11 suspects, and the consequent unavoidable conclusion that a hugely disproportionate number of them are Jewish. They are conditioned into turning away from any conclusion which might challenge the more conforting idea that 'elements within the US secret state did 9/11' or 'a private intelligence network were responsible'. With honest consideration though it's hard to dispute your conclusion with respect to the perpetrators.

As you say, the Truth is 'antisemitic'. It stinks of hypocrisy when those who regard themselves as 'truth tellers' or 'truth inquirers' display the very same sophistry as the ones they rightly criticise when it comes to this issue.

This issue is still the key to understanding the politics of our age.

OffG
Are you genuinely deranged? No one on this site is 'sycophantic' to anyone, and you are not being asked to be so.

As we already said once and are saying for the second and last time – you and everyone else are free here to critique Israel and individual Jewish people and any other nation or group or individual on any grounds – EXCEPT THEIR RACE

If you find that's restrictive – well, you are a racist.

We're asking you for the second time to leave this discussion here. Move on to something useful or interesting.

crank

As we already said once and are saying for the second and last time – you and everyone else are free here to critique Israel and individual Jewish people and any other nation or group or individual on any grounds – EXCEPT THEIR RACE

Can we criticise their ideology?

Mandy Miller
"Their ideology"?? And what is that? I'm one of "them". What is my ideology, pray?

I've read your and Mark's attempts to twist your collective denigration of Jews into some type of political analysis. It's like reading Nazi rationalisations of their Final Solution. "The Jews believe they are chosen. The Jews run the banking system and only look after their own, so we have to put them in camps to save the country"

How many Jews do you talk to? Do you think we all run the banking system?

I find you disgusting. I applaud OffG's commitment to free speech, but all you do is exploit and abuse it.

mark
Don't take any notice of me, Mandy. I'm just a goy donkey. Get it straight from the horse's mouth.

"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 until 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." – Netanyahu.

"Goyim were born only to serve us. Without that, they have no place in the world – only to serve the People of Israel. Imagine that one's donkey would die, they'd lose their money. This is his servant. That's why he gets a long life, to work well for this Jew. Why are Gentiles needed? They will work, they will plough, they will reap. We will sit like an effendi, and eat." – Ovadia Yosef, Chief Rabbi of Israel.

"Our Race is the Master Race. We are divine gods on this planet. We are as different from the inferior races as they are from insects. Other races are beasts and insects, cattle at best. Our destiny is to rule over the inferior races. The masses will lick our feet and serve us as our slaves." – Menachem Begin.

Mandy Miller
Oh what a nasty trick you try to pull. Quoting our biggest lunatics at me.

Yosef is dismissed by most sensible Jews as a crazy old bigot and racist. Begin was crazy too and a terrorist. Netanyahu? A thug and a racist fool.

I might as well put quotes up here from Hitler and Goebbels and say that means all white anglo saxons are Nazis.

What is wrong with you? Why is your response to racism to become a racist? Why do you so clearly hate me simply because I was born a Jew? I don't hate you, I do not think you are a donkey. I don't call you a goy. Why are you so full of such hate toward the Jewish race because some Jews are wackos? Newsflash, some white men are wackos also.

I think you have found a way to repeat up-vote your posts and those of the other racists on here. I hope so anyway, if not I am sad .

[Aug 25, 2019] Propaganda is the management of collective attitudes by the manipulation of significant symbolism collective attitudes are amenable to many modes of alteration . intimidation intimidation .economic coercion drill

Aug 25, 2019 | off-guardian.org

TheThinker I've been reading a collection of essays by a Australian guy called Careys – on Democracy and propaganda, fully named, Taking the Risk out of Democracy. He died unpublished but his papers were collated in a book after. Here some bits from my read that were interesting.

In Jan 1994 David Hume reflecting on the consequences of the recent state terrorist projects that Washington had organised and directed in its Central American domains, with the Church a prime target. They took special note of 'what weight' the culture of terror has had in domestically the expectations of the majority vis-a-vis alternatives different for the powerful; the destruction of hope, they recognised, is one of the greatest achievements of the free world doctrine of 'low intensity conflict' what is called 'terror' when conducted by official enemies. Noam Chomsky 1994

Propaganda is the management of collective attitudes by the manipulation of significant symbolism collective attitudes are amenable to many modes of alteration . intimidation intimidation .economic coercion drill

But their arrangement and rearrangement occurs principally under the importers of significant symbolism and the technique of using significant symbols for this purpose is propaganda. Lasswell, Bardson & Janowitz 1953

Successful use of propaganda as a means of social control requires a number of conditions: The will to use it, the skills to produce the propaganda, the means to disseminate it; and the use of significant symbols with real power over emotional reactions – ideally symbols of the sacred and satanic (Light vs DARK)

A society or culture which is disposed to view the world in Manichean terms will be more vulnerable to control by propaganda. Conversely, a society where propaganda is extensively employed as a means of control, will tend to retain a Manichean world view, a view dominated by symbols and visions of the sacred and satanic.

Manichean – an adherent of the dualistic systems (dual = 2) religious systems of Manes, a combination of Gnostic, Buddiasm, Zoroastrianism and various other elements with a doctrine of a conflict between the Light and Dark, matter being regarded as dark and light / good vs evil – love vs hate

The 'public mind' was recognised long ago by corporate leaders to be 'the only serious danger confronting' their enterprise & major hazards facing industrialists along with the newly realised political power of the masses, which had to be beaten back.

Big Business in the US stated started the Americanise Movement ostensibly to Americanise worker, who was being perceived as being under threat from subversive forces of the Industrial Workers of the world.

what started as a method of controlling the political opinion of immigrant workers quickly turned into a massive program for the thinking of an entire population. One of the most startling examples of the escalation of the whole population in processes of propaganda was how Americanisation Program ( a word which conjures up the 'thought police') came to be transformed into a National Celebration Day for the 4th July, to many of us (Carey's words not mine) it comes as a shock to discover that American Independence Day had it's beginning in a Business led program to control public opinion rather than as a direct expression of a Nation celebrating its historical birth.

[Aug 25, 2019] Is the term chosen people a racist or anti-Semitic term

Aug 25, 2019 | off-guardian.org

Fins mcgee

The Chosen Folk are so "chosen" and clever they have Lucky Larry as their 911 made billionaire poster boy bragging he gave the order to pull 7. Not to mention Epstein, flaunting his sexcapades in the so called "news" like he's some kind of Charles in Charge. No, the one in charge is the Superior General. And the one who claims it all (you included) by Papal Bull enjoys his duper's delight and the inquisition continues unimpeded. Of course the owner of 3/4's of Jerusalem is never mentioned. The ruse (and who benefits) is plain as day.
Admin
The 'chosen folk' is a reductionist racist term. As is the ridiculous suggestion that an entire ethnicity can be blamed for the crimes of a few individuals who share that ethnicity. We're fairly sure you don't believe all white Anglo Saxons are responsible for every crime of the British empire. Please extend the same courtesy to Jewish people, many of whom deplore Zionism and Israel's own racism.
crank
@Admin

I don't think this is a coherent intervention.

Ethnicity is not racial; it describes cultural, linguistic and national associations. Race is generally understood as a reference to common biological ancestry.

Jewishness might, by some be accurately described as an ethnicity, but not as a race, as there are Jews from different 'racial groups' (-if one subscribes to such a notion at all).
If you are going to intervene with a response like the one above, I would suggest that you go the full mile and explore in an article or three which aspects of Jewishness which relate to ethnicity and which to ideology.

'Fins Mcgee' denotes 'chosenness' as a defining ideological characteristic of those who self identify as 'Jewish'. Writers and thinkers like Gilad Atzmon, Israel Shamir and others would be in agreement. If that is a fair summation, then anyone who strongly identifies as 'Jewish' is, in truth, self identifying as somehow 'chosen' or special or superior to non Jews.

If that is unfair or wrong, then explain yourself and explain why. Explain what is 'Jewishness' ?

Taking your comment as it stands as the extent of your view would mean that all criticism of Jewish ideology is, in essence, 'racist'.

[Aug 25, 2019] Who in the US goverment was protecting Epstein and facilitiating Epstein activities

Aug 25, 2019 | off-guardian.org

DunGroanin

Even when he was 'sent down' to the cushy jail – he had it made easy. He was able to buy all he wanted. Including kiddie size girl panties! In prison!!

His charitable work was supposed to be at a charity set up just before he went in prison guards accompanying him on his daily escapades and multi 'chiropractory' appointments per day were paid by him and had to dress in business suits the records of who met have been destroyed.

But the prison has had to release a whole bunch of records that still exist.

This is a exploding can of worms that doesn't look like stopping anytime soon.

[Aug 24, 2019] Elusive and allusive indeterminacy characterizes everything in the culture of postmodernity

Aug 24, 2019 | off-guardian.org

People hunger for these stories, not for the real truth that impacts their lives, but for the titillation that gives a frisson to their humdrum lives. It is why post-modern detective stories are so popular, as if never solving the crime is the point.

To say "we will never know" is the mantra of a postmodern culture created to keep people running in circles. (Note the commentaries about the Jeffrey Epstein case.) Elusive and allusive indeterminacy characterizes everything in the culture of postmodernity.

Robert Pfaller, a professor at the University of Art and Industrial Design in Linz, Austria and a founding member of the Viennese psychoanalytic research group "stuzzicandenti," put it clearly in a recent interview :

The ruling ideology since the fall of the Berlin Wall, or even earlier, is postmodernism. This is the ideological embellishment that the brutal neoliberal attack on Western societies' welfare (that was launched in the late 1970s) required in order to attain a "human", "liberal" and "progressive" face. This coalition between an economic policy that serves the interest of a tiny minority, and an ideology that appears to "include" everybody is what Nancy Fraser has aptly called "progressive neoliberalism". It consists of neoliberalism, plus postmodernism as its ideological superstructure.

The propagandists know this; they created it.

They are psychologically astute, having hijacked many intelligent but soul-less people of the right and left to do their handiwork.

Money buys souls, and the number of those who have sold theirs is numerous, including those leftists who have been bought by the CIA, as Cord Meyer, the CIA official phrased it so sexually in the 1950s: we need to "court the compatible left." He knew that drawing leftists into the CIA's orbit was the key to efficient propaganda.

For so many of the compatible left, those making a lot of money posing as opponents of the ruling elites but taking the money of the super-rich, the JFK assassination and the truth of September 11, 2001 are inconsequential, never to be broached, as if they never happened, except as the authorities say they did.

By ignoring these most in-your-face events with their eyes wide shut, a coterie of influential leftists has done the work of Orwell's crime-stop and has effectively succeeded in situating current events in an ahistorical and therefore misleading context that abets U.S. propaganda.

[Aug 24, 2019] Russian trolls exiled from Guardian find home for their hate

Aug 24, 2019 | off-guardian.org

George The use of the word "hate" has become another thought-stopper. It's like calling something "Evil" without further explanation. I first realised this when I found the following article which is specifically about Off-Guardian:

https://www.stopfake.org/en/russian-trolls-exiled-from-guardian-find-home-for-their-hate/

The title is in the URL itself but it's worth emphasising since it headlines the article:
"Russian trolls exiled from Guardian find home for their hate"

And there it is – the simple assertion "hate". It's so crass. It's like cartoon propaganda – which may well be the most effective kind. And it echoes that old staple, "They just hate us!", "They are haters!" and, best of all, "Hatred of the good for being good." That last one is a masterstroke since it absolves one side of investigation while shoving all blame onto the other side. Best of all, the more "they" hate us, the more "good" we must be! 19 0 Reply Aug 22, 2019 5:25 PM Reader


Ramdan

F*** . am I russian now? ..and where can we pick our passports??
Capricornia Man
The article you provide a link to offers the following wisdom:
'In line with the Kremlin's goals, OffGuardian seeks to undermine trust in the "mainstream media".'
Capricornia Man
Wanted to finish my above post by observing that, for anyone capable of a moderate level of independent thought, the "mainstream media" have done a brilliant job of forfeiting trust all by themselves.
Elementor
LOL – my favorite bit of that article is where they cite Kit's use of the internet-4Chan meme "accidentally the " as evidence English isn't his first language!!!!

ROFL I literally nearly fell of my chair laughing.

This lady is revealed as either truly ancient, a cultural hermit or or herself a non-native English speaker.

Also she lies her ancient ass off about Ukraine.

Roland Spansky
That is fricken priceless
Rhys Jaggar
The real difficulty with all 'hate crime' stuff is proving that a hating state of mind exists. The key point here is that those offended by statements or those victimised may assume hate to be present when it may be hatred of an individual, not their sex, religion, sexual orientation etc.

Here are few hard questions:

1. If I state, correctly, that several leaders of Russian mob families are- or have been Jewish, does that make me antisemitic?

I say absolutely it does not. I would back that up by saying that several other crime overlords profess to have Christian ancestry. So not all mob capos are Jewish ..and being Jewish does not make you more likely to lead a life of crime .

2. So what about if I killed a Jewish mobster because his hoods sexually abused my daughter? Does that make me antisemitic??

Absolutely not. I would kill any mob capo whose vermin attacked my daughter. Jewishness does not come into it. I certainly hated the mobster, but I did not hate his Jewishness .

3. What about if I say that the Israeli Secret Service, the Mossad, is a terrorist organisation?

Here we are talking about the official Intelligence Service of the Jewish State. Those folks are going to be Jews, representing Jewry. Is that anti-semitic?

Why?? Being a terrorist basically means you have either a very violent religion or you do not uphold the principles of a less violent one. I would point to the known terrorism in the histories of MI6, the CIA, the OSS and several others to prove that it is not Jewishness that drives the terror, rather the precepts under which Intelligence agencies are run.

4. What if I say that Jews are over-represented amongst the Western media and banking elites? Is that anti-semitic??

Well, firstly the data suggests I am being factual, namely that the actual number of Jews in such positions is far higher than might be expected on a population-based pro rata outcome. Secondly, have I said it is either good or bad? I think I am suggesting that society might discuss why that has come about, whether any consequences have ensued and whether the majority in a society consider those consequences to be appropriate. It is not anti-semitic to ask if a small minority holding inordinate influence/power is aggreable to the majority of the citizenry. After all, we are continually suggesting that white, public-school-educated male graduates of Oxbridge should not dominate UK society in this day and age .

5. What if I say that a small minority of Jews proclaim the Jewish people to be superior to all goyim? Is that factual or anti-semitic??

What if I say to hold such a view makes that subset of Jews to be racist?

My view again is that that is factually accurate. It does not imply all Jews think like that, does it? It is like saying in the 1970s that the National Front was racist: said nothing about the majority of British people, did I?

I would really dare some Jewish people to challenge those arguments.

Not by smearing, scaremongering, bursting into tears or any other melodrama.

Nor by power plays, threats, blackmail or libel.

By cool, reasoned argument .

OffG
Can we try to keep at least one thread free from discussing the antisemitism issue.

If you want to debate that subject there is an ongoing and currently civilised discussion between Mark and Mandy Miller on one of the Epstein threads. Feel free to re-post this comment there.

This article is about the media manipulation of the concept of 'hate'.

wardropper
I share Norman Finkelstein's view that the appropriate response, both by us and by the Labour Party, for example, is to funnel any such accusations to a small unit which will answer any serious charges in detail, leaving the rest of us to state quite clearly, "It's over. We're not having our wide political and global interests forced into an endless, energy-sapping and time-wasting series of protests against ridiculous charges. We are not answering them any more. Take them to the relevant unit, and leave our free speech alone."
That said, Rhys does a great job of making his point, and perhaps the concept of "hate" is not so irrelevant to that point.
Martin Usher
Antisemitism is not what's being discussed, its just a well known example of 'hate' that we can all more or less agree on. Its a tricky subject to discuss because its the closest thing that we have to Thoughtcrime in contemporary society so we need some sort of ground state we can work from.

The example of Jewish mob bosses is useful but we could have chosen American ones rather than Russian ones -- the Jewish 'mob' was preeminent in US cities before being displaced by the Italians/Sicilians. What I think is important, though, isn't stated and that's the idea that tribal identity has gradually been made important with our identity is inextricably bound up with our tribe, a tribe differentiated by religion, race or orientation but not notably by our economic class. The question shouldn't be to argue among ourselves about details and crumbs but to ask why allowing ourselves to sliced and diced into potentially warring groups. The media is full of it (literally and metaphorically) -- if its not race or gender then its the latest millennial versus baby boomer BS. To me the answer is obvious -- you don't want people uniting around common goals and expectations, you need to have them at each other's throats, fighting for those crumbs.

Incidentally, having to put up with racist jerks is the unfortunate side effect of espousing free speech. There's no easy way to winnow the good from the bad and you just know that if you let Big Brother decide for you then sooner rather than later it will be *you* that they'll be coming for.

flaxgirl
Oh for goodness sake. It's all faked and they tell us it's faked loud and clear. I have a webpage on how they tell us clearly.
https://occamsrazorterrorevents.weebly.com/they-tell-us-clearly.html

Obviously, it must be a legality because these events are so full of obvious holes they have to be deliberate and in some cases what happens is virtually impossible such as in the event that happened in my own city last week. Mert Ney brandishes a knife in the middle of an amazingly empty Clarence St with BROWN EYES but when we see him pinned ludicrously under the milk crate he has BLUE EYES, a change in eye-colour obviously effected with blue-tinted contact lenses. Does anyone seriously believe that a dextrous Mert pulled out and inserted these contact lenses between his knife-brandishing and being pinned?

Brown eyes
https://www.news.com.au/national/nsw-act/courts-law/accused-sydney-stabber-mert-ney-suffering-in-jail-after-leg-surgery/news-story/e522f3ce939d1af835c8301897e55b8e

Blue eyes
https://www.theaustralian.com.au/nation/loners-ideology-of-death-revealed/news-story/2be3afe37ee71f54d48e4ea701855ad4#&gid=null&pid=1

Scrutinise the media stories. Notice all the contradictions in the various versions of the story. Notice all the misspellings, the inappropriate tone and register of language. The phony loved ones and witnesses. The nauseating heroes pimping their employer on morning TV. The complete absence of any sense of reality to these highly improbable crimes. What will it take for the recognition of these events to catch on? I simply do not understand.

Here is the word "Staged" inserted incongruously into this text. "Must have been a hell of a drug bender "?????? How much clearer do they have to make it?
Sydney stabbing LIVE: NSW Police confirm body found in Clarence Street unit linked to attack
BREAKING: We can confirm the death of the woman in the Clarence Street unit in Sydney's CBD is linked to the stabbing on the street below. Staged Must have been a hell of a drug bender

https://headtopics.com/au/highest-order-heroes-the-men-who-took-down-an-alleged-sydney-knifeman-7520445?fbclid=IwAR0leTJjIpqgFp1VtFTGwJ5_z0qNJCLrKEuYW6tlKDD9m-Kl71h7-AHanys

And then we have the Philly cops spraying blood.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/AcGRq80InQU?version=3&rel=1&fs=1&autohide=2&showsearch=0&showinfo=1&iv_load_policy=1&wmode=transparent

OffG
The blue/brown eyes thing is a non-issue, it can be created simply by changes in lighting levels or resolution. We pointed this out to you once already.

If you genuinely want to engage people and are not – as many claim – a troll please take some advice:

Add the words 'I think' or 'could be' occasionally.

Don't comport like a missionary trying to convert unbelievers.

Put forward suggestions rather than pronouncements of dogma.

That way your posts might provoke some genuine discussion. If you ignore these suggestions and continue with these repeat-posted manifestos of certitude it's going to start looking as if the claims of trollery are not misplaced.

PS – this commenter below is inviting discussion of potential hoax shootings – why not engage with him ?

PPS – The link you added to the alleged contact lenses is broken, so we're removing it. Add another below and we'll add it to this post of yours

flaxgirl

The blue/brown eyes thing is a non-issue, it can be created simply by changes in lighting levels or resolution. We pointed this out to you once already.

Apologies, I do not remember seeing that, however, I'm not sure your assertion is valid – you'd have to show an example that matches mine. When you say the link didn't work I wonder if you copied the entire link or just clicked because obviously the link wasn't underlined for its entirety and for it to work you needed to copy and paste it. In any case I found a better link – see below.

If you scroll down on this page you will see a ring around Ney's eyes which clearly indicates a contact lens.
https://pressfrom.info/au/news/australia/-141427-sydney-stabbing-accused-mert-ney-reportedly-saw-michaela-dunn-and-other-sex-workers-before-alleged-attacks.html

In this photo of a tinted contact lens you will see a similar-looking ring.
https://eyecandys.com/collections/colored-contacts/products/eyecandys-opal-grey-colour-contacts

As usual, OffG, you select one item only – which you don't manage to debunk in any case. There are so very many things wrong with the stabbing incident story. Unsurprisingly, you fail to make a comment on the word "Staged" appearing incongruously for example. Please, I beg you, OffG, what is your explanation for the word "Staged" appearing incongruously in the middle of a paragraph on this story and are you going to tell me that it is just sloppy journalism to say " must have been a hell of a drug-bender" when a woman has just been knifed to death and another woman injured? Are you going to tell me, "sloppy journalism"?

You seem unable to confront evidence, OffG. I have the feeling that you believe it is more scientific to reserve judgement, that one must always sit on the fence about evidence. This is a fallacy. When all the evidence points in a certain direction and none points in any other direction, the scientific thing to do is to call it. It is sitting on the fence that is unscientific.

I wonder what you actually call. Do you think that it might have been 19 terrorists armed with boxcutters responsible for 9/11 after all? Perhaps you do.

INCONTROVERTIBLE FACT
No one, despite the offer to choose your own judge, has responded to my 10-point Occam's Razor challenge for 5 separate events nor has anyone come up with even a single point. The fact that that to you is insignificant means you do not know how to judge logic and evidence. I have put my money where my mouth is but, OffG, you never, ever do that.
https://occamsrazorterrorevents.weebly.com/5000-challenge.html

different frank
Just because there are uniforms, it does not mean they are cops.
flaxgirl
No, but I think they often are because these events are really drills pushed out as real and response agencies are key players. In this video, the very observant Woodrow Wobbles identifies training going on. He notices one guy hanging around the milk crate who looks like a guy at an event in Melbourne and he identifies the words, "Lock it, lock it, lock it Let go," suggesting the police are being trained.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/82YmcYaaU-k?version=3&rel=1&fs=1&autohide=2&showsearch=0&showinfo=1&iv_load_policy=1&wmode=transparent

Maggie
I am in agreement with you Flax. Definitely looks like a training drill.
Doctortrinate
Flaxgirl: I looked at the Philly cop video you posted – very interesting, as am also unsure of it's authenticity – though perhaps not for the same reason as yourself .as to myself , the drops/drips and dribbles themselves seem to be counterfeit, possibly edited into the film – and detectable by slowly (frame by frame) playing through it revealing some unusual and seemingly unfeasible characteristics ..of couse, would still be fakery , but with a twist – Media created even.
Elementor
Agree. It looks at first glance as if those dots just appear, which leads to thinking the cop "sprays" them or something similar, but on close analysis it looks wrong. I suspect it's been faked, a honeypot for the unwary hoax-buff.
Doctortrinate
precisely Elementor – well seen and put " a honeypot for the unwary hoax-buff"

quite possibly.

Cheers.

Seamus Padraig
'Hate crimes' are just thought-crimes , pure and simple. They are now criminalizing political points of view. The Constitution is dead.

even though the once-revered ACLU does not oppose the Second Amendment.

Of course the American Civil Liberties Union doesn't oppose the Second Amendment–it's a civil liberty! That being said, with things going the way they're going, I wouldn't be at all surprised in the ACLU eventually does turn against the Second Amendment. Once upon a time, not so many years ago, they were free speech absolutists as well–does anyone else here remember the infamous Skokie Nazis? The ACLU actually argued their case pro bono! But in more recent times, they have succumbed to the logic of the campus 'hate speech' craze.

Many legal scholars would respond that the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment and the Due Process Clause in the Fifth Amendment already provides all American citizens with the guaranteed right to equal protection under the law

And they would, too, if only the US government still followed its own constitution.

Harry Stotle
"Today, I am also directing the Department of Justice to propose legislation ensuring that those who commit hate crimes and mass murders face the death penalty, and that this capital punishment be delivered quickly, decisively, and without years of needless delay" – unless they are neocons in which case they can kill with impunity under the usual rubrics – 'liberal intervention', 'bringing democracy' or 'humanitarian aid'.

Hell, we can even stage pop-festivals and invite grotesque figures like Sir Richard to belt out 'Imagine' while the local militia tool up with CIA hardware before wreaking havoc on unarmed civilians.

If western audiences become slightly sceptical the MSM will do its usual job of reassuring them that mass murder is an inconvenient externality when it comes to building a brighter future.

Elementor

Why should the American public trust the MSM for what may have already been determined to be a 'hate' crime without providing evidence of the hate

Terrific point. Where do we draw the line on skepticism about official narratives? How much do we really know about these shootings, the identities of the shooters, even the reality of the crimes?

I don't want to get into full "it's a hoax" mode, but surely it's only intelligent to recall there are documented cases of fake events and therefore being prepared to allow the possibility any event may be fake is objectively the only rational response. What stops us? Nothing more than the same kneejerk rejection that makes other people refuse to consider 9/11 may have been an inside job or JFK may not have been shot by LHO.

It's not per se crazy to entertain the possibility, or per se offensive either. Fakery happens, we are constantly being manipulated, being aware of all possibilities is our only defense.

The same intelligence entities that coined the phrase "conspiracy theory" have also closed down any Youtube channels that dare to question, even in the most restrained and respectful way, the reality of any mass shooting. But sites like this condone that censorship, not seeing the connection.

Is it possible to have a non-binary, rational, fact-based discussion about the possibility some mass shootings may be fake?

I invite thoughts

John Thatcher
The old adage,"The price of freedom is eternal vigilance" comes immediately to mind,and that particularly applies to government and government action.As you rightly point out,there have been too many examples of fake events and official lies for anybody to be complacent.Treat all with caution and judge on the weight and quality of the evidence.If the evidence is not conclusive in any direction maintain a sceptical state of mind.
Elementor
So very true. And yet so many of the enlightened are unwilling to assimilate this into their thinking. You can call it laziness maybe. It's tempting to simply replace the received wisdom of the mainstream media with the received wisdoms of the alternative media. But in this case what are we doing? More is needed of us, as you so rightly say.

How many are prepared for the continuous effort of questioning and skepticism required in order to be a truly independent and responsible human being?

The lack of responses so far here is not a good sign.

Hey there OffG columnists Phil Roddis, Ed Curtin, CJ Hopkins, Eric Zuesse, Renee Parsons, and hey there BigB, Jen, Maggie, Antonym, Mark, and other "stars" of this forum. People actually come here to read what you guys have to say. This question of fakery is a major subject impinging on our future freedom.

Who of you dares to address it?

edited by Admin at author's request to correct typo

Elementor
So no one wants to have a serious non-kerazee debate about the potential for fake shootings? Too far outside the Overton Window? How disappointing. It's bizarre, even flaxgirl would rather troll the admins that just have a sensible debate with someone who'd like to talk to her.
Anna
Very good and valid question Elementor.

Not so very long ago, I happily dismissed most 'fake shooting' narratives as either merely far-right/lumpen (sorry for such a crass term)-baiting/monetising, conspiracy theories – of the Alex Jones variety.

However, after about two-three years of observing media biases, I find it so much easier to spot where the overriding narratives appear to reside. However the actual events unfold is often less important than their ultimate goal, which is of course mass censorship and getting round that terribly inconvenient Second Amendment. This is I believe, the main agenda of the so-called Hate Crime. Yes, I am aware that this makes me appear to some rather Info-Wars but that's the joy of shedding my own confirmation bias!

I do now assume that there is state or states involvement in all these terror events. They are manipulated/controlled (of sorts), whether the perpetrator knows of it or not. Some may indeed be fake from the onset.

Empty vessels make the most noise and that is I'm afraid the state of corporate 'journalism', who mostly whore themselves for the state/oligarchy narrative. Be very aware of ANY story that is shilled verboten by these hacks, as they are awfully telling in the identification of agendas and the direction of our further enslavement.

axisofoil
Remember this?

https://www.youtube.com/embed/wipVDW3Vc4A?version=3&rel=1&fs=1&autohide=2&showsearch=0&showinfo=1&iv_load_policy=1&wmode=transparent

MLS
Another level of fakery altogether, faking mind-control!

[Aug 24, 2019] Hate crime, like thought crime, is double-plus ungood

Notable quotes:
"... What term from Orwells dystopia will be popularised next, 'crimethink'? ..."
Aug 24, 2019 | off-guardian.org

Yonatan Hate crime, like thought crime, is double-plus ungood. 4 0 Reply Aug 23, 2019 2:45 PM Reader

Harry Stotle

Yes, irony upon irony – the MSM, presumably inspired by PC now actually communicates in 'newspeak'.

What term from Orwells dystopia will be popularised next, 'crimethink'?

It may sound hyperbolic but are thoughts being restructured to comply with the principles of Ingsoc?
https://33hpwq10j9luq8gl43e62q4e-wpengine.netdna-ssl.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/1984_-_newspeak_dictionary.pdf

[Aug 24, 2019] Russiagate has elements which are similar to anti-Semitism hysteria in Nazi Germany

Aug 24, 2019 | off-guardian.org

Reader mark

This is a case of setting up a ludicrous straw man.

Suppose for the sake of argument it was established that the Russian state actually did try to kill Skripal. Of course they didn't, but assume they did.

It would be entirely legitimate to say "the Russians" did it. This wouldn't be racist, or bigoted, or anything else. It wouldn't mean that all 150 million Russians were personally involved, or approved of this action, or played an active part in it, or even that they knew of it or could care less about it.

It wouldn't be some kind of racist trope that bus driver Mr. Ivanovich in Novosibirsk was somehow responsible.

Any more than 300 million Americans and 60 million British were personally responsible for the conspiracy to invade Iraq, or Bush's and Blair's criminal war of aggression.

In like manner the 9/11 atrocity was carried out by a few hundred individuals. Mostly Israeli and dual national Americans, and a significant number of Israel First stooge goys serving Zionist interests.

The vast majority of Jews and Israelis in the world played no part at all, and are just passive recipients of the cover conspiracy theories to explain it away.

This is just a smokecreen that is habitually thrown up whenever anyone connects the dots between Silverstein, a 200 strong Mossad ring, Chertoff, and so many others.

[Aug 24, 2019] Why should the American public trust the neoliberal MSM taking into account their dismal record in truthfulness and honest reporting

Aug 24, 2019 | off-guardian.org

As the mainstream media consistently rush to judgment, speculation too often becomes fact before all the evidence is considered (ie Russiagate) as the MSM is relied on to provide factual and critical background information.

And yet since 65% of the American public believe that the MSM is peddling fake news begs the question of why should detailed reporting on these tragic events be left to a discredited media establishment or that their information on these recent shootings be considered truthful?

Why should the American public trust the MSM for what may have already been determined to be a 'hate' crime without providing evidence of the hate – as the Divide and Rule Game continues undeterred sowing division and conflict among the American people.

It remains unclear exactly why either tragedy is being specifically labeled a "hate" crime instead of felony murder as if there is a larger agenda to establish 'hate' as a bona fide.

Obviously, such barbaric mass killings are not normal behavior as the rationale for such conduct must stem from some deep emotional depravity just as the epidemic of suicides of young white males who have lost hope in American society makes no more sense.

There is an endemic crisis throughout the country and the political class are responsible. Decades after federal government elimination of grants for community mental health programs, 'hate' is the favorite determinant factor as the world's most violent nation creates a generation of emotionally or mentally unstable young men, many of whom may be on mind-numbing psychiatric drugs.

Since the MSM has failed to inform the American public of advanced mind control practices; perhaps the MSM itself and the young shooters are part of widespread experiment using MK Ultra or other state-of-the-art brain manipulation techniques. How would the American public ever know which might be true?

[Aug 24, 2019] Something about the level of hypocrisy in neoliberal MSM regarding Arab-Israily conflict

Aug 24, 2019 | off-guardian.org

Reader mark

If you say "the Americans" or "the British" invaded Iraq in 2003 and someone tried to close down discussion by screaming "racism" they wouldn't get much mileage out of it.

The Chosen Folk can talk about "the Arabs" or "the moslems" (all 2 billion of them) till the cows come home without so much as a raised eyebrow.

But any reference to the Chosen Folk that is not dripping with nauseating, sycophantic, lickspittle toadying, is automatically unacceptable and off limits.

[Aug 24, 2019] Americans increasingly begin to appreciate how Israel is in fact a serious liability, that line will not continue to sell very well, no matter how many congressmen and tame journalists are bought and no matter how many new groups pop up like mushrooms funded by Jewish billionaires

Aug 24, 2019 | off-guardian.org

Bittersweet More New 'AIPACs' Popping Up

"All of the pro-Israel groups taken together constitute a veritable political juggernaut that seeks to advantage Israel and benefit it directly without regard for the damage done to American democracy and to actual U.S. interests. They should rightly be seen as organizations that regard their loyalty to the United States as negotiable, but they try to obfuscate the issue by claiming, wrongly, that there exist compelling reasons why Israel and the U.S. should continue to be best friends.

As Americans increasingly begin to appreciate how Israel is in fact a serious liability, that line will not continue to sell very well, no matter how many congressmen and tame journalists are bought and no matter how many new groups pop up like mushrooms funded by Jewish billionaires. Change is coming."

[Aug 24, 2019] Talmudistan racist problem

Notable quotes:
"... Palestinians are:- "beasts walking on two legs" (Begin), "drugged cockroaches in a bottle" (Eitan), "hungry crocodiles" (Barak), who "must be crushed like grasshoppers" (Shamir). ..."
"... We have fringe racist groups in the UK and US and elsewhere. But the KKK in the US just get drunk and burn a few crosses now and again. They are totally irrelevant. If they supplied ALL the heads of state, Begin, Shamir, Sharon, Barak, Netanyahu, ALL the heads of the armed forces, ALL the religious leaders, and the media in the country, anyone with two brain cells to rub together would have to acknowledge there is a difference. ..."
"... You can't criticise ANY of these people because it "offends" AIPAC, the Board of Deputies, the Friends of Israel, and "hurts their feelings." You are not allowed to call them out without incurring unprecedented draconian penalties unless you have first solved world hunger, global warming, criticised every other nation on the planet, and obtained a written permit from the Board of Deputies specifying exactly what terms and language you are authorised to use. ..."
"... Why obsess about Talmudistan? Because it is the tail that wags the dog. It exercises a complete stranglehold over the politics and foreign policy of the US and its satellites like the UK. It incites endless wars which those countries are expected to prosecute on its behalf. ..."
Aug 24, 2019 | off-guardian.org

mark I'll give you some "truly horrible expressions of bigotry." Palestinians are:- "beasts walking on two legs" (Begin), "drugged cockroaches in a bottle" (Eitan), "hungry crocodiles" (Barak), who "must be crushed like grasshoppers" (Shamir).

Truly horrible racist stuff. 8 -4 Reply Aug 22, 2019 1:39 AM Reader


Mandy Miller

What is it with you Mark, that you keep just bringing up the same four or six quotes from the most bigoted Jews you can find who are mostly dead? I am curious what you think it proves about anything?

Sure there are lunatics and there are racists and some of both are Jews, just as some are not Jews. Taking the words of the racist Jews and using that to fire up your own racist hate of all Jews, even those like me who think Begin was a one-eyed lunatic, is a waste of your life and breeds nothing but more hate. I hope God grants you peace in your heart, Mark.

mark
These are not four random annoying saloon bar bores blowing off steam after one too many. They are three successive prime ministers and the head of the armed forces. Four typical political and military leaders. You could say the same about any other political and military figures. Or religious figures like the Chief Rabbi. This is normal and routine. There is a great deal that is far worse, like "Justice" Minister Shaked, who called for all Palestinian mothers to be murdered so that no Palestinian children could be born. Or a national newspaper called The Times of Israel openly advocating the extermination of the Palestinian people at concentration camps in the desert, "When Genocide Is Justified." Or two leading rabbis calling for the murder of all Palestinian children.

Imagine that Cameron, or May, or Johnson, called Jews cockroaches or grasshoppers, let alone calling for Jews to be murdered. And every leading UK politician and military figure had done the same as a matter of routine for decades. Imagine the outrage. Rightly so.

I would never call Jews cockroaches. But ALL these Zionist figures ROUTINELY speak of Palestinians in these terms. This is completely normal. And nobody so much as raises an eyebrow. It is perfectly okay for the Chosen Folk to do this.

That is the point. It would be of benefit to the world if there was a little peace in the hearts of these people as well.

Mandy Miller
I didn't say they were insignificant I said they were regarded by most sensible Jews that I know as lunatics.

Begin did not speak for most Jews while he was alive and certainly doesn't now he's dead. I'm sure he liked to think he did, but why believe that racist schmuck? Ditto for Binyamin, who is as stupid and racist as he is crazy.

Like I said you might as well quote Hitler or Goebbels as being representative of today's Germany or claim they speak for all gentiles everywhere unless individuals specifically state otherwise. I was born a Jew, my kids were born Jews, we didn't volunteer to join! We should not need to officially repudiate Zionism or the crazy ravings of our leaders past or present in order to be assumed good people, any more than you, Mark, should have to repudiate Nazism or Mr Churchill's racism or mr Johnson's anti-Russian schtick to be considered a good person.

I would like to see a good study of Zionism here, I support the Palestinians in their struggle as again do many many Jews of my acquaintance (though, sadly not all I will admit). But do you not see how alienating and hurtful it is to see comments such as "the chosen people did 9/11", or (as was talked about a short while back) "Hebrews have a tendency toward pedophilia"? Please! Have a little respect is all. Talk about the evils of Zionism but don't conflate that with Judaism or with everyone lucky or unlucky enough to be born a Jew!

And all that oy vey goy stuff you do feels quite hurtful also, I am just curious what you think it brings to the conversation by way of enlightenment, communication and brotherly love, Mark? It just looks like you are hating on Jewishness in the same way those Nazi images of guys with hook noses etcetera did. It feels nasty. What does it achieve? Would it be a nice and helpful gesture to at least drop all that?

mark
We have fringe racist groups in the UK and US and elsewhere. But the KKK in the US just get drunk and burn a few crosses now and again. They are totally irrelevant. If they supplied ALL the heads of state, Begin, Shamir, Sharon, Barak, Netanyahu, ALL the heads of the armed forces, ALL the religious leaders, and the media in the country, anyone with two brain cells to rub together would have to acknowledge there is a difference.

You can't criticise ANY of these people because it "offends" AIPAC, the Board of Deputies, the Friends of Israel, and "hurts their feelings." You are not allowed to call them out without incurring unprecedented draconian penalties unless you have first solved world hunger, global warming, criticised every other nation on the planet, and obtained a written permit from the Board of Deputies specifying exactly what terms and language you are authorised to use.

Why obsess about Talmudistan? Because it is the tail that wags the dog. It exercises a complete stranglehold over the politics and foreign policy of the US and its satellites like the UK. It incites endless wars which those countries are expected to prosecute on its behalf. It destabilises the entire planet causing indescribable suffering and human misery. It expects and receives a free pass to commit genocide and possess a huge illegal arsenal of WMD it constantly threatens to use. It extorts unimaginable amounts of tribute from other countries. It commits terrorist atrocities like 9/11 with complete impunity. Its endless intrigues and subversion poison the whole public space in entire countries. The smear campaign against Corbyn and the Epstein organisation are just two fairly trivial recent examples. Politicians and ordinary people are not required to swear loyalty oaths to Botswana or Bolivia on pain of instant dismissal. That is the difference.

A bit of kvetching about all the above seems a little bit justified under the circumstances.

Mandy Miller
Ok, Mark, I understand that you think Israel is a bigger racist problem than the UK and all the NATO non-democracies, and I can agree with you about that. Israel is for me and many (not all) of my family and friends a place of terrible evil and shame. I hate that the suffering of so many Jews under the Nazis has been turned into an excuse to impose more suffering on other innocent people simply because of their race. So, let's agree Israel is indefensible in its treatment of the Palestinians and in its appalling foreign policy. Just awful.

My question is, how helpful is it to express those facts in racial terms? Why do you use these words that only have the effect of turning people away from you and closing down there receptiveness?

Ok, what I'm saying is, if you try to tell the average non-political nice well meaning Jewish person or liberal, of which my sister is a good example (both) that Israel is the aggressor nation in so many instances and if you tell them about the terrible plight of the Palestinian people it will be hard for you to get them to listen even if you don't use words that make you sound like a racist. But as soon as you start throwing around words such as Talmudistan and "chosen folk" and mockery of Yiddish with your "oy vey goy" routine, you are giving them a route to the exit door., which is what they want. You are giving them permission to ignore you! They can say "oh what a racist", and just leave the building.

So, my question is, why use that language? What good is it doing you that makes it worthwhile to lose so much credibility among people you could perhaps convert if you approached it differently?

I guess my question is, what does this aggressive use of offensive terms do for you that you hold on to it to the point of undoing any good you could do? Why not just say "Israel"? Why terms such as goy and chosen folk and language that can sound soooo racist and threatening?

I believe you Mark that you don't entertain real racist thoughts, but can you communicate with me why you use that language that makes it sound as if you do? Maybe you don't realize it but to a Jew it feels like a slap across the face. It triggers centuries of dormant fears of persecution. I have to try hard to put that aside and approach you without fear or anger. So I'm asking you, as a gesture toward understanding, to please not use those terms in our conversation? And maybe you might find you don't need that armour, or comfort blanket or whatever it is to you. Maybe you will find your message, which as put above is something I can get on board with, gets across more clearly.

Can we take that step, Mark? I am asking with peace and love in my heart.

[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