Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
August 17, 2016

Open Thread 2016-27

News & views ...

Posted by b on August 17, 2016 at 17:19 UTC | Permalink

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@77 -- "Where do all the pipelines go?"

All roads lead to Rome (via Greece) and thence to parts north.

Posted by: x | Aug 18 2016 15:15 utc | 101

Noisette @ 94

"…Quantitative easing (money creation)…"

Respectfully, this is incorrect. Quantitative Easing is an asset-swap. No net, or new financial assets are created via QE.

The Fed (in the case of the US) is buying bonds, Treasuries. This swaps $ for $ that pay interest (bonds). It also reduces income to the non-government in the pursuit of yield, so it shouldn't be a surprise that it didn't work as expected.

QE changes the composition, not the level of financial assets in the non-governments portfolio.

The concept gets blurred if instead of buying Treasuries the Fed begins buying corporate (private debt) bonds, CDO's or MBS's, etc. I don't know that it is doing so.

Another question for MRW or Formerly T-Bear.

Posted by: paulmeli | Aug 18 2016 15:18 utc | 102

Bianca is selling as a fairy tale herself, whitewashing crimes of Erdogan's family gang (not a peep about Bilal trading Syrian oil stolen by Daesh and his involvment, along with the MIT, in the kidnapping, raping, torturing and murdering of Serena Shim and Jacky Sutton, or about suppressing freedom of speech and of gathering).

Not a word also about criminality of the masonic Muslim Brotherhood that brought that thug Erdogan to power, who was willingly and profitability (a billion presidential palace) doing their and NATO/Israel/GCC/London (false flag operation Mavi Marmara) bidding.

I believe Erdogan saw that his end is near when CIA/MI6/Mossad agents flying that Turkish fighter plane shot down the Russians. I don't think it was his decision nor knowledge. And then he realized he would be replaced soon, so he made up with the SCO.

I understand that Erdogan is now "our son of a bitch", but please spare me such whitewash.

Posted by: ProPeace | Aug 18 2016 15:22 utc | 103

So, a key southern pillar of NATO is asking the big question: if Russia and Iran are now not enemies (but rather partner allies) then for what is NATO (and its exponential cost curve)? Alas, its purpose and relevance is in doubt. Must be time for another false flag by the usual suspects...

"Turkey considering military ties with Russia as NATO shows unwillingness to cooperate – Ankara

Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu has lashed out at NATO, saying the alliance is not fully cooperating with Ankara. In an interview with Sputnik, he hinted that Turkey would consider military cooperation with Russia."

Posted by: x | Aug 18 2016 15:23 utc | 104

@94 noirette.. thanks. i think that is why the term petrodollar came about.. if you can pay for energy, or enough military to control a lot of the energy, then the financial picture is all about controlling the energy availability.. obviously energy -oil/gas - is very central to one's need at present.. this would also explain why the wars are all about energy... money enters it too, but it is more confusing to put it all together.. i suppose this is why financial sanctions and running everything thru the camp bretton agreement and imf is a winning strategy for certain 'currencies' over others and why some countries are attempting to boycott certain currencies too..

Posted by: james | Aug 18 2016 15:24 utc | 105

U.S. moving assets around to provoke Russia

Southern Front ally Turkey wobbling about it's NATO membership
Amb. "Maidan coup" Pyatt moves from Kiev to Athens

During Arabian Spring flower revolt opportunities and after the fall of Morsi,
US failed to move Robert Ford to Cairo due to Egypt's refusal.

No surprise Negroponte has claimed support for a Clinton presidency as she is the most prominent hawk in town in tune with ICC candidate Netanyahu.

Posted by: Oui | Aug 18 2016 15:26 utc | 106

"…deficit spending will end badly."

Deficit spending and bank lending are the only ways to expand the money supply. Monetary economies cannot expand without an expansion of the money supply. It's the expansion that drives spending that leads to GDP.

You (or the video) seem to be suggesting that private debt is the preferred solution. Look where that's gotten us. At any rate, private debt IS deficit spending. Spending more than one's income.

For anyone to run a surplus there must be at least one entity running a deficit. This is axiomatic. Difficult to demonize deficits in view of that reality.

Virtually every $ in existence is owed to the banking system. What does that say about the 'value' of our pension funds? I'm holding cash that earns low interest.

Posted by: paulmeli | Aug 18 2016 15:27 utc | 107

memo to The former Pentagon official Michael Maloof !
Yes, the US is “being basically left out” with regard to its role in the Syrian conflict is absolutely right.
Now China and Russia are prominent members of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization "SCO". Iran wants to become a member. That’s 17 countries in all that are either prominent members, or partners, which also include Turkey, Iran, India, Pakistan and countries in Central Asia. It’s a large organization.....YES “The SCO – not only economic organization in nature – it will become a counter-terrorism entity. And that’s where the Chinese feel that they need to be. It also reflects the fact that the SCO gives members a greater presence and influence in the Middle East alongside with Russia and Iran.
The fact that the United States are in a great need for complete change on a new foundations, otherwise you need to go to Mr. Gorbachev for advice .....

Posted by: ALAN | Aug 18 2016 15:31 utc | 108

Re: Noirette, 94

Well said, Noirette! The energy piece of this, and how it relates to measures like QE, is well explained by Gail Tverberg,

QE was a desperate effort to keep the world economy afloat, in the face of collapsing demand. This collapsing demand will itself undermine not only global debt markets but the oil industry itself.

And demand is collapsing because the current globalized economy is enriching a small elite at the expense of everyone else. Well described in this article:

Posted by: Gordon | Aug 18 2016 15:32 utc | 109

It seems to me that every nation on earth is reportedly broke or in debt. That would be impossible. Every nation cannot be in debt. Somewhere there should be a nation or two which is not in debt but instead has a surplus.

The purpose of reporting scary debt statistics is to frighten the common people (easily accomplished as the average person understands debt as it applies to the individual and has no understanding of fiat money).

Frightening the commoners with debt prepares them for austerity. "Austerity measures" are essentially theft of the commons by the elites.

They're after your social security.

Posted by: fastfreddy | Aug 18 2016 15:41 utc | 110

"They're after your social security."

They're after everything.

Posted by: paulmeli | Aug 18 2016 15:45 utc | 111

Here is an example of rising American stars in international relations soon to rival Neuland and Powers.

Inculcating American exceptionalism is one of the brainwashing responsibilities of the MSM which they are very effective at.

Posted by: psychohistorian | Aug 18 2016 16:06 utc | 112

Iceland did not yield, as with the banksters.

Secret nukes: US mulled storing atomic weapons in unwitting Iceland, declassified docs reveal — RT News

Posted by: ProPeace | Aug 18 2016 16:12 utc | 113

I want to respond to MRW but am really busy today so lets make it simple

Does private finance exist? Yes

Has it existed at least as long as the feudal era? Yes

Are The City of London and the US Fed examples of ways in which finance is not totally sovereign? Yes - read Secrets of the Temple by Greider

MMT is a theory about totally sovereign finance which we don't have because of the hydra head of private finance tucked in here and there. Why make up the theory of MMT if it has existed for 12K years?

Posted by: psychohistorian | Aug 18 2016 16:14 utc | 114

Ukraine threatens to spread Nazi Banderite networks to Poland - Fort Russ

According to announcements from the official website of the Institute of National Remembrance of Ukraine, the “Viriy” international expedition and educational camp will be held from September 8th-19th. The expedition will depart from Lvov to the “ethnic Ukrainian lands that now belong to the Republic of Poland,” the organization’s website says.

A few words about the INR and its leader: The institute was established following the Orange Revolution in 2005 according to the model of the Polish Institute of National Remembrance. The main issue which the institute dealt with at the initial stage of its founding was searching for evidence to prove the “Holodomor” against Ukrainians in Stalin’s Soviet Union. In Poland, the Ukrainian institute’s director, the Lvov-native Vladimir Vytrovich, is considered a neo-Banderite historian. But this definition is only partly true. The upcoming action, as well as the INR’s activities as a whole, have nothing to do with historical science. History is used only as material for political purposes. It is no accident that the creation of the INR was actively participated in by the Congress of Ukrainian Nationalists, a political party based on the Banderite Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists. Vyatrovich himself was a prominent employee of the Ukrainian Security Service (SBU).

Experts familiar with the history of Ukrainian neo-Nazism (which is wrongly graced with the name “nationalism”) know that its different varieties adhere to the mechanistic concept of the “united Ukrainian state,” which means the unification of ethnic Ukrainian lands within the boundaries of a Ukrainian nation-state. The “from the San to the Don” line in the Ukrainian anthem speaks to this “unified Ukraine’s” territorial claims, as the San is a river on Polish territory. Ukrainian neo-Nazi programs claim the territory of several provinces in Poland but, in fairness, Ukrainian neo-Nazism has territorial claims against all of contemporary Ukraine’s neighbors.

What concrete goals is the INR pursuing with its expedition? The above-cited communique speaks of the restoration of the spiritual and material memory of ethnic Ukrainian lands. That the action is designed for youth is especially emphasized. What’s more, Rusyns and Lemkos are counted among “ethnic Ukrainians” now living on the territory of Poland who allegedly want to return to “united Ukraine.” During the Second World War, Lemkos considered themselves Russians, albeit a separate group among the Russian people. They not only did not recognize themselves as Ukrainians, but moreover suffered cruel oppression at the hands of Ukrainian nationalists. Many Lemkos and Boykos were the first to be sent to the Talerhof and Terezin death camps during the First World War upon being denounced by Ukrainian nationalists. A number of Rusyns in Poland, especially the intelligentsia, were killed in Nazi concentration camps thanks to denunciations by Banderites and other Ukrainian collaborationists. After the war, hundreds of thousands of Rusyns were then forcible resettled in Ukraine or in nearby Polish provinces for having allegedly cooperated with Banderites. The author of these lines contributed to the organization of an international conference in Rostov-on-Don in December of 2008 dedicated to the tragic topic of the genocide of Rusyns.

Thus, the INR’s action is not only historically and ethnographically incorrect - it is blasphemous from a moral point of view. According to the same logic, the residents of Donbass being shelled by Ukraine should be called Ukrainians.

Since the emergence of independent Ukraine, Ukrainian neo-Nazis have taken increasing interest in “ethnic Ukrainian lands” in Poland. Announcements, moreover, have been telling. Following the Senate and Sejm of Poland’s decision to recognize the Volyn Massacre as an act of genocide against Poles, the organization of new anti-Polish actions by Ukraine only become a matter of time. Immediately following the Polish Sejm’s resolution, Kiev announced that Ukraine would not leave this hostile action unanswered. The INR’s expedition can mean only one thing: neo-Banderite Ukraine is striking back in the war over history with Poland. Any commitment to scientific objectivity or search for understating with the Polish side should not be expected from the INR’s activities and such expeditions. The INR and SBU are well aware that this expedition will only further irritate Polish public opinion. Is this the purpose of this action? Or is this an emotional, knee-jerk reaction to Poland’s offense? It is probable that the neo-Banderites of the INR want to show Poles through this action that Ukraine is capable of fighting back in this war over history. They want Poles to know that it’d be better to not rake up the past, and quietly bury the history of the Volyn Massacre.

I would posit that these expectations are futile. I would also say that Ukraine has prepared a Plan B in the case that Poles continue to resist. This plan centers on the active expansion of Ukrainian neo-Nazi ideas and organizations into Poland. The “national reunion” expedition of Ukrainian youth to Poland, to “ethnic Ukrainian lands,” is none other than the start of this plan. The million Ukrainian migrant workers, numerous Ukrainian students, and overall Ukrainian diaspora in Poland are not nearly as numerous as they are active as a fertile environment for the implementation of these expansionist plans.

P.S. On August 31st, 2014, at a forum on Novorossiya in Yalta, Crimea, I posed a question to Mateusz Piskorski as to what he thinks about Right Sector’s foray onto the territory of Polish provinces bordering Ukraine. Zmiana’s party leader replied that the local Polish population is fighting against Banderite propaganda. The Polish patriot Piskorski is now in prison. One of the most consistent fighters against Ukrainian neo-Nazism in Poland was forced out of the fight.

Posted by: ProPeace | Aug 18 2016 16:20 utc | 115

"MMT is a theory"

MMT is description. A description of how a monetary system works based on the rules of accounting and the definitions of GDP.

A description of the very simple rules by which nominal transfers occur across transactions over time, based on nothing more than addition and subtraction.

Bookkeeping in other words, which has been going on in one way or another for 1000's of years. It used to be done with an abacus or tally sticks, now it's done with computers.

Credit existed long before currency.

Since a debit is a debt and a credit is an asset, debt and asset relationships will by definition always be a part of a monetary system.

Posted by: paulmeli | Aug 18 2016 16:31 utc | 116

Sputnik News talk about an alliance between Russia Iran and Syria taking shape. All parties seem to recognize the importance of the Kurdish question. "The idea is to preserve the territorial integrity of both Turkey and Iran. Currently, the Kurdish problem is one of the most important issues for Ankara. In order to resolve it, Erdogan may turn to Tehran.
Tarasov also assumed that Erdogan could easily abandon ties with Daesh and end support for terrorist groups in Syria".
The Kurds have a certain amount of self rule within the constitution of Iraq, I am sure Assad would grant a certain amount of self rule to the Kurds firmly within a sovereign Syria, similarly with Iran all the above brokered by Russia.Here in the UK we have 4 nations N.Ireland, Scotland, Wales and England all within the United Kingdom of Gt Britain and Northern Ireland. If we can accommodate such diversity I am sure some reasonable solution can be found within those 4 states with Kurdish minorities.

Posted by: harrylaw | Aug 18 2016 16:54 utc | 117

Sorry I omitted to say Scotland, N Ireland and Wales have their own parliaments and can legislate on certain devolved matters. All within the Constitution of the UK of GB and NI

Posted by: harrylaw | Aug 18 2016 16:59 utc | 118

@4, Elijahjm is very ingenious. But he fails to take into account the growing mega-state of Russia/China.

Posted by: ruralito | Aug 18 2016 17:01 utc | 119

paul @ 101 yes ... i was rough and ready it is hard to describe what is really going on in one short post that aims or pretends to cover…our energy / monetary universe.. it is bound to be one has to analyse all asset swops, but what are assets worth (once you unhook from the nos. printed in the paper), who knows? - you get the drift.

Posted by: Noirette | Aug 18 2016 17:09 utc | 120

"If we can accommodate such diversity..." harry law @115

Indeed, if. The Brexit issue once more accented the differences between the constituent "kingdoms" of UK. Scots do not view Brussels as more alien and more imposing than Westminster, and they very much prefer to stay in the EU, and if it would take secession from UK, it is actually a bonus. Another political position which is popular in Scotland precisely because it is unpopular in England is the question of nuclear arms (that UK places in Scotland). There is a whole set of issues where "we in Scotland do it differently". And it does not help that Scots surprisingly frequent the leaders in EU (I guess Cameron is a Scottish toff). Of course, it is pretty civilized and nowhere as tense as the French-Dutch (Valoon-Flemish) division in Belgium.

Accommodating diversity in Europe is often quite problematic. One should not exaggerate, but EU (and NATO, in the case of Kurds) is much less of a good influence that it should be.

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Aug 18 2016 17:14 utc | 121

About pro-Bandera Ukrainians and Poles. Sadly, hatred of Russia is popular in Poland, even if revived hatred of Ukrainians is a strong competitor. Piskorski was arrested as a "Russian spy". There are some organizations trying to foster Polish-Ukrainian friendship, and their "successes" verge on comical (like a joint demonstration in Warsaw with 20 participants).

About Boiko/Lemko and "Russians". "Rus" is a bit complicated ethnonym, but basically it covers everyone who speaks East-Slavic language/dialect. As "Ukraina" means "borderland", at the inception of this term it was describing the lands further east, never incorporated into Austrian Empire, and most of the Western Ukraine that was was a historic region named "Red Rus" but also "Halychyna", where Kingdom of Halich flourished in 14-th century. Thus "Rusyn" refers to "Red Rus", which politically meant acceptance of "Red Rus" as a constituent of a larger Polish state. Effectively, as Eastern Ukrainians were "Ukrainian and Russian", part of Western Ukrainians we "Ukrainian (Rusyn) and Polish".

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Aug 18 2016 17:31 utc | 122

jfl @ 100 said: "Al-CIAduh and IS won't be dead till there's a stake driven through each of their hearts. The problem is that the heart of each beats in Washington DC."

True, but then, as long as Empire's exist, mercenaries will be around to do their dirty work. The aforementioned lackies, are just the latest incarnations working for the mordern day Empire.

Please, bring on the Multi-polar world.

Posted by: ben | Aug 18 2016 17:40 utc | 123

@ paulmeli 101, 106

The concept gets blurred if instead of buying Treasuries the Fed begins buying corporate (private debt) bonds, CDO's or MBS's, etc. I don't know that it is doing so.

Appreciate your contribution. Ever heard of Maiden Lane I, II, III or the Fed’s Trading Desk in NY? Suggest a tad more research may enlighten.
The Federal Reserve expanded its balance Sheet from $850 billion in 2008 to $4.4 Trillion 2015. In 2013 it had grown to $3.8 trillion.

Starting in November, 2008 the Fed began buying MBS and CDOs. MBS is shown in Fed Balance Sheet, 2008 – see Foot Notes for the more critical info.

Fed purchases were uurm.. erm to help out Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac

Fed Discloses CDO holdings (March 2010)

~ ~ ~ ~

Is the Fed Solvent? Can the Federal Reserve bail- out itself? Sure, it can always write a check on its account that holds $0. The Fed is considered trapped. ZIRP and NIRP are the new normal. The Stock Market is not the economy and does not reflect fundamentals.

We will keep our silence – not much in MSM on the quadrillion of Derivatives exposure in the global banking system. Buffett termed them WMFD (weapons of mass financial destruction). Don’t count on the Exchange Stabilization Fund. It will end badly.

Posted by: likklemore | Aug 18 2016 18:17 utc | 125

@Piotr Berman | Aug 18, 2016 1:31:31 PM | 122

Sadly, hatred of Russia is popular in Poland

Only if you buy into the official and unofficial NATO/Israel propaganda outlets and hundreds of paid trolls on he Internet fora.

If you ask people on street, it's much different.

Cultural and economical exchange was vibrant until recently.

even if revived hatred of Ukrainians is a strong competitor.

What "revived hatred" ?

You mean normal reaction of any decent person to glorification by current Ukrainian puppet government, its minions and militias, of the cult of Nazi Banderites butchering 200 thousands of Polish citizens in Volhynia?

Posted by: ProPeace | Aug 18 2016 18:26 utc | 126

@107 paulmeli.. thanks for your ongoing comments... whatever can expand, has to contract at some point too, or it is a man made dream for as long as everyone goes along with it... bubbles can last a long time.. monetary expansion which has as it's byproduct debt of magnitude unable to be paid back is either indentured slavery, or a good ticket for those who are in early on the ponzi scheme.. the financial system at present is definitely going to end badly.. it isn't if, only when..

@119 ruralito.. i agree with your assessment of elijah m... thanks..

Posted by: james | Aug 18 2016 18:28 utc | 127

ProPeace@124 You mean John 'Tokyo Rose' McCain here is the lost recording.

Posted by: harrylaw | Aug 18 2016 18:33 utc | 128

FYI Mateusz Piskorski | Katehon think tank. Geopolitics & Tradition

Posted by: ProPeace | Aug 18 2016 18:33 utc | 129

aka "Hanoi Bird",
aka "Bomb, bomb, bomb, bomb, bomb, Iran" McCain
aka son of the US admiral covering up Israeli assault on USS Liberty
aka USS Forrestal explosion and fire starter (biigest in the USN history)

Yes, that one.

Posted by: ProPeace | Aug 18 2016 18:39 utc | 130

@ paulmeli | Aug 18, 2016 11:18:47 AM | 102

If you are familiar with banking, the formula is Assets are equal to Liabilities plus Capital.

Assets are those things the bank owns such as loan contracts as well as various things the bank has invested in, either to provide a cash flow or store surplus to requirement cash that can be liquidated should cash be needed. I think the bank's required reserves may also be placed in this category but may appear under capital instead - am doing this off the top of the head without a wikipedia net.

Liabilities are those things the bank owes, these are the accounts the banks customers hold, current accounts, savings accounts, checking accounts, etc. that the bank must cover whatever activity is demanded by the customer on their accounts. Liabilities also include debts the bank generates doing business e.g. wages and salaries, insurance, etc.

Capital occupies the difference between the Assets and Liabilities and is the investment the owners of the bank have made in the business and many times their accumulated profits as well. It is the size of the capital accounts that determine the reserves required as well as the volume of contracts the bank can issue. No commercial bank can write an unlimited volume of loan contracts without showing the reserves needed to comply.

Given this, the Fed has begun accepting possibly dodgy assets at face value from the banks to preserve that margin between assets and liabilities and thereby preserving the bank's capital account which would quickly disappear should assets be reset to current market values. The result would be bankruptcies galore and would bring down the economic house in an unparalleled disaster for which there is no known remedy. This is the Fed skating on very, very thin ice.

Posted by: Formerly T-Bear | Aug 18 2016 19:56 utc | 131

#103, Excellent!

Posted by: ThatDamnGood | Aug 18 2016 20:20 utc | 132

@ paulmeli | Aug 18, 2016 11:18:47 AM | 102

A response to your 102 was made and disappeared, I know not where. Thus sort of a duplicate since you haven't another reply.

In banking accounting the formula is: Assets are equal to Liabilities plus Capital.

Assets are those things a bank owns such as loan contracts, investments in income producing things and in easily convertible assets to cash should that be required. Since this is being done off the top of the head without a wikipedia safety net, I think maybe the bank's reserves are also part of assets but may be accounted under Capital accounts.

Liabilities are those things a bank owes such as current accounts, checking accounts savings accounts that the bank's customers carry at the bank. Liabilities also include the business obligations of the bank such as wages and salaries, insurance, and etc needed to conduct business.

Capital account is the difference between the assets and liabilities. Capital account is the investment the bank's owners have made in the business and often includes the accumulated profits of the bank.

What the Fed has done is accept the assets held by banks at book value in exchange for income producing bonds, thereby assuring the bank's assets meet the required standards for continuing business. Should some bank assets reflect their market values, the capital of the bank could quickly be reduced to nothing at which point the bank becomes bankrupt. Fed's bonds preclude that situation. The Fed is skating on very, very thin ice. But the panic that would ensue should banks fail would be earth shattering and bring down the world's economy in very short order. There would be no known remedy for that.

Posted by: Formerly T-Bear | Aug 18 2016 21:07 utc | 133

I have just been watching a clip called: FSA goes after the Iranian mercenaries,

And I have a feeling that "somebody" is feeding Iranians coordinates to the FSA along with TOWs. Must probably triangulate telephone or radio transmissions in Farsi or Persian.

Who could that "somebody" be?

Posted by: CarlD | Aug 18 2016 21:40 utc | 134

Formerly T-Bear @ 131.

Thanks for the reply.

It appears the Fed does what it wants (which is what the financial sector wants). At some point the banking cartel may overstep as there are other sharks in the water that can also bite. Conflicting interests and all that.

I've also read that Treasuries are in very short supply relative to demand. Yields below inflation so negative in real terms.

I presume that one possible remedy for the dilemma you have presented would be to nationalize the banking system, which I believe would be beneficial to the 99%, but disastrous for the privileged .01 %.

Alas, there is no political will to do so. Americans so hate 'socialism' unless it is giveaways to business, then it is something else, not socialism.

James @ 126, Thanks for the comment.

I suspect most of the damage done by monetary systems is through the credit circuit, not the public investment by governments. Bubbles are typically inflated thru credit. psychohistorian is spot on about the damage done by the financial sector, but seems to not understand where it's weak underbelly is.

btw in case I hadn't posted this previously:

Krugman to Leitaer - Never touch the money system

Krugman is a tool and a sell-out, exposed finally for all to see during the Sanders/Clinton primary.

Posted by: paulmeli | Aug 18 2016 21:43 utc | 135

@133 paulmeli.. thanks.. interesting dude - bernard lietaer.. from wikipedia page on him "In 2012, he was the lead author (with Christian Arnsperger, Sally Goerner and Stefan Brunnhuber) of Money & Sustainability: the missing link, a publication of The Club of Rome, in which he predicted that "the period 2007-2020 [will be] one of financial turmoil and gradual monetary breakdown." The book was published in May 2012 and has been slated for release in several languages in November 2012."

the way i see it, us politicians gave over the power to make decisions on finances to wall st. was a long time ago.. the last and most outstanding example of this is the changes in law whereby wall st was bailed out in 2008... if the game is creating a situation where banks need to be bailed out - i can't think of a better way then this to expand the money supply, creating more debt/credit that would be conceivable in a traditional sense of lending.. i suppose the mantra now is 'the (rigged) monetary system' is too big to fall, but it will have to at some point..

i see lebtaers mention of 2020 as an interesting year on a number of levels.. we'll see..

Posted by: james | Aug 18 2016 22:09 utc | 136

Finally! CNN: Bandar bin Sultan link to 9/11 attacks | Veterans Today

What are your thoughts about 9/11? This is very convincing IMHO:

JAMES FETZER: America Nuked on 9/11: Compliments of the CIA, the Neocons in the DoD & the Mossad

There cannot be free and just USA without new, honest investigation into those events.

Posted by: ProPeace | Aug 19 2016 0:06 utc | 137

@131 ftb 'The Fed is skating on very, very thin ice. But the panic that would ensue should banks fail would be earth shattering and bring down the world's economy in very short order. There would be no known remedy for that.'

Isn't that what the Rothschild said in London?

Posted by: jfl | Aug 19 2016 0:53 utc | 138

@95 noirette, 'Debt is by theoretical principle of no importance to anyone who can print or create money'

Isn't that the problem? Debt is being created by the 'banks' when they loan money into existence ... the 'miracle (nightmare!) of compound interest' is grafted (interesting contrast between horticultural graft and bankster graft) on top of what should be money freely created by a banking utility in each nation?

That is where the incongruity with mother nature comes in. Trees don't grow to the sky but interest compounded on debt (money) does.

Mother nature loves her children, the banksters eat theirs, just like the titans.

Posted by: jfl | Aug 19 2016 1:11 utc | 139

jfl @ 137

"Debt is being created by the 'banks' when they loan money into existence ... should be money freely created by a banking utility in each nation?"

Which is what many of us have been alluding to/arguing for. Not necessarily on this forum but on the internets.

Non-profit public utility banking.

Probably never going to happen., but at least we have defined the problem.

Defining the problem would normally be the hard part, but politics and ignorance makes a solution the hard part.

Posted by: paulmeli | Aug 19 2016 1:49 utc | 140

@138 pm

You should be more careful with your expositions on 'debt does not matter'. On this forum. Most people here don't see you elsewhere. The interest on debt does matter and is what is responsible for all our current 'troubles'. You need to make more clear that 'debt does not matter' when it's utility debt and interest-free. The reason debt is incurred right now is to produce interest income, and the piper is going to be have to be paid ... or the interest payments simply ended ... for us to 'get there from here'.

Posted by: jfl | Aug 19 2016 2:07 utc | 141

@138 pm

I've posted several times a link to Creating new money. The authors define the problem and provide a solution.

Posted by: jfl | Aug 19 2016 2:10 utc | 142

The UK suffers an absence of strategic thinking at the top. That applies to everything, the economy, defence, agriculture, you name it. Stubbs @80

I would not view it in the same fashion. About agriculture, I thought that it is doing OK, in particular, it expanded quite a bit under EU rules. And according to some travelers, British Islands experience something unheard of: palatable food!

But on defense, the lack of "strategic thinking" is simply caused by the lack of strategic needs. Strategy requires threats to address, so the first item on the agenda is identification of those threats, and if insufficient, tending them carefully, less they wither. I guess the nearest hostile country is Iceland, I dimly recall "Cod War", and a more recent conflict, when contumely Icelanders disregarded very vocal displeasure of British Government and refuse to guarantee deposits in their banks. And it was quite a bundle. Crafty Icelandic banks were accepting unlimited amount of deposit in their currency with very good interest rates. Most attractively, the demand for those deposits drove their currency up, leading to best paper profits worldwide. Then when the fateful year 2008 come, depositors, notably from UK but also the Netherlands and Germany, started to withdraw, the Icelandic currency crashed to 1/3 of the prior value, and the only reason it did not crash all the way to zero were currency controls, meaning, very limited amount of deposits was allowed to be converted into international currencies. In total, a loss of 90% (or was it 80?). Not surprisingly, UK government did not want to accept such cheeky attitude, but alas, it did not have the nerve to dispatch the Navy and size Icelandic properties. Something the Eurozone have done in Greece. In other words, the Vikings ravaged England once more, this time by making a Ponzi scheme -- less dramatic than exploits of Eric the Bloodaxe or Ivar the Boneless, but no less effective. But at least England had a proper response to Russian hordes, would they reach their shores.

Back to military strategic thinking. Every British prime minister upon taking the office writes a letter of instruction to the nuclear forces, what to do if England is wiped out (if not in entirety, Her Majesty government is wiped out). This is a Crown secret, so the strategy is verbatim from Dr. Strangelove: secret Doomsday weapon. Perhaps one of the missiles will destroy Iceland?

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Aug 19 2016 4:05 utc | 143

jfl @ 139

"You should be more careful with your expositions on 'debt does not matter'"

Never said 'debt doesn't matter'. What I and others have said is that for a sovereign, wrt liabilities in its own currency, neither the debt nor the interest matters. this is obviously in reference to public debt.

"The interest on debt does matter and is what is responsible for all our current 'troubles'."

The interest on private debt matters, and is what is responsible for all our current troubles. There, fixed that for you.

"You need to make more clear that 'debt does not matter' when it's utility debt and interest-free"

You need to distinguish between which kind of debt you're talking about, public or private, before you make these kinds of statements.

Public debt, for a sovereign, is immaterial, is in fact a necessity, otherwise there could be no net savings possible for the non-government.

The interest is immaterial because a sovereign can always meet liabilities in it's own currency, regardless of the level or interest rate. It becomes even less material when one observes that the interest rate on public debt for a sovereign is inversely proportional to the level, so that as a percentage of GDP the interest barely keeps up with inflation.

In simple terms the interest on public debt is not a burden. in fact it is income for the non-government, the opposite of a burden.

We seem to agree that private debt is a problem so all that remains is for you to make an argument that public debt (again, for a sovereign) is an issue and why.

Which you haven't done.

"I've posted several times a link to Creating new money. The authors define the problem and provide a solution."

Please explain the problem and the solution, briefly in your own words here, in this forum, otherwise we have no idea what you are talking about, or whether you know what you are talking about.

Posted by: paulmeli | Aug 19 2016 4:34 utc | 144

Sadly, hatred of Russia is popular in Poland

Only if you buy into the official and unofficial NATO/Israel propaganda outlets and hundreds of paid trolls on he Internet fora.

If you ask people on street, it's much different. Pro Peace, @125

Let me give you an anecdote from an actual Polish street. When I was a student walking on a Warsaw street, I was accosted by a gentleman asking me in Russian where is something, one of the train stations if I recall. Hastily, he explain that he is a Bulgarian. I expressed a surprise that he tells me that without waiting for the directions, and he explained that he got directions three times already, but each time they were wrong. Not a shining example of hospitality by my countrymen.

That was really long time ago. However, currently the party that was parliamentary majority, Law and Justice, for years plies very curious propaganda, namely that airplane accident in which Polish president and about 100 other important people perished was a result of dark conspiracy between their Polish political opponents (prime minister at the time was from that party) and the Russians. Seems that 30-40% of the population actually believes that. It is also my impression that the majority supports sanctions on Russia, not that they believe that it is imperative to return Crimea to Ukraine (Poles are too close to the situation to believe that it is possible), but because it is an occasion to make Russia weaker. For sure, there is no political price for anti-Russian policies. Incidentally, Zmiana (Change) of Piskorski is a very, very small party. And a lot of people doubt the espionage case against Piskorski, not out of any sympathy but because the current government has a long track record of making ridiculous accusations. Whatever they say, nearly 50% will believe and nearly 50% will automatically assume that this is nonsense*.

So at the moment, proponents of ending the sanctions are the government of Hungary, Slovakia and Czech republic. Additionally, Bulgarians are friendly to Russians, but the government is not. Thus I checked what they are saying. There was a vote in their parliament to end one of the sanctions: prohibitions on the deputies of Duma (Russian parliament) to visit EU, two main opposition parties were for, the main government party was against, and nearly half of the PMs were abstaining or not present. The argument of the opposition was that the ban makes no sense and that it is unpopular. The argument of the government was that Bulgaria should not break EU solidarity (being a small country on the edge of the Union and dependent on good will of the larger members). However, Italy is also unhappy. Russians are fond of Italian cheese and wines, and most galling, Union rules make it very hard to expand Russian gas export, but Germany, of all people, has a work-around in the from of North Stream, while in the same time helping to block similar schemes in the south. The American advise to buy Qatari liquefied gas instead sounds very much like coming from Marie Antoinette.

The problem is that eastern countries unhappy with sanctions are dependent on subsidies, and Italy is dependent on good humor of European Central Bank (to avoid Greek treatment). Greece has both dependencies. EU is a bit similar to Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth that sported extremely unworkable constitution: every member of Parliament had veto power. That can work in two ways: the better one is to resort to intimidation (in the old case, fellow members or Parliament, each with his saber, could intimidate a minority; shooting political opponents could cost you a death penalty, but provoking a duel, or a melee ex post interpreted as a duel was OK), and the worse way was to have complete paralysis. And in the Union we can observe a mix of both.

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Aug 19 2016 4:54 utc | 145

Well, well; apparently the U.S. had plans to launch a first strike nuke attack against the USSR in 1963. But JFK said no.

Curiouser and curiouser...

Posted by: V. Arnold | Aug 19 2016 6:25 utc | 146

@ paulmeli | Aug 18, 2016 5:43:27 PM | 133

When coming to conclusions about banking, I consider it best to keep one's powder dry, and, to mix a metaphor, not disembark until your boat is securely landed. The problem about banking, it is not rocket science, but nobody will stop and learn what banks are and do, or their history and how they developed; too pedestrian for most intellectuals that; jumping to erroneous conclusions is so much easier.

Regret my answers were given shortly before retiring and not as complete as they should have been. The first reply did not mention beyond loan contracts promoting economic production. The other development beginning in recent times is the loan contract aimed at consumption - the credit card - and developing a revenue stream to compensate investors - the financialization of debt. This was insignificant before the 1960's. Most of the banks problems seem to arise in developing revenue streams for their investments; there being no historical experience to rely on, nor a functioning economic theoretical basis to measure progress with, the last of those was sunk with the discreditation of J. M. Keynes - those days are not returning, the context no longer exists. The second reply, the better part was lost to the ethers, the reconstruction was a poor shadow of the original - the price of thinking something posted before refreshing a page, finer details intended are lost, such as the capitalisation of a bank limits that bank about the extent they can do business and make loans (overlooked in the reconstruction which has bearing on the entirety of the reply).

Summing up, there appears to be complete ignorance about the banking system, the vacuum filled with opinion, conjectures, and fantasies leading to perceptions of conspiracies and surreptitious agendas, none of which will withstand factual information. That, is a very leaky boat to be embarking with.

Posted by: Formerly T-Bear | Aug 19 2016 6:41 utc | 147

@ jfl | Aug 18, 2016 8:53:12 PM | 136

Seems so, but from an entirely different but knowledgable perspective.

Posted by: Formerly T-Bear | Aug 19 2016 6:57 utc | 148

Andrew Korybko - Shifting Sands In The Mideast: Russia And Turkey

Posted by: okie farmer | Aug 19 2016 7:15 utc | 149

The usual suspects must be kicking themselves now on their 'failed' policy to contain Assange in London Embassy. If they'd let him run free then he'd be dead by now and Wikileaks no trouble. Based on these emerging outcomes it makes one wonder if the Swedish 'sex scandle' was not a baited double-agent strategy in the first place by Assange et al? Cramped tortuous 'house arrest' for a few years in a metro centre where communication channels can't be easily denied or a bullet in the back of the head one night... hmmm?

"Wiki Leak Email Found Showing Secret Memo To Obama From ISIS"

Link to wiki-leak-email

Posted by: x | Aug 19 2016 8:12 utc | 150

Glen Ford, and Ajamu Baraka are trying to educate the voters who've always voted Demoblican out of fear of Republicrats

Why Ajamu Baraka? Why Vice President? And Why the Green Party?

Democrats talk a different game, but are responsible to the same one percenters who fund Republicans, so once in office, Democrats govern pretty much like Republicans. In fact Democratic presidents and governors frequently enact the oppressive policies we won’t allow Republicans to enact.

NAFTA came up twice during the first Bush presidency and failed. It took a Democrat, a President Clinton to rally enough right wing Democrats to ally with Republicans to get it into law.

Ending public aid was also something no Republican could do, but Democrats only need the support of the black and poor when they’re candidates, not so much when they’re governing.

The 2008 Bush bailout went before a Democratic Congress and it failed. Barack Obama had to suspend his campaign for a week and come to DC and work the phones to flip the Congressional Black Caucus and enough other Democrats to pass the Bush bailout, which he quadrupled down on once in the White House. Again it was a blow no Republican could have struck, though many wanted to.

Barack Obama used stimulus money to fund what he called “Race To The Top”, a drive to privatize public education that resulted in the closing and privatization of thousands of public schools, and pushed hundreds of thousands of qualified experienced public school educators out of the classroom. This too was something no Republican could have accomplished, much as they wanted to.

There are many, many similar examples of Democrats accomplishing the right wing goals Republicans can only talk about on the state and local levels.

Republicans like Donald Trump talk about how they’d like to do mass deportations. But our First Black President has deported two million people, more than any other three presidents combined, after promising Latino voters “a road to citizenship” in both his campaigns.

People voted Democratic to end the war in Iraq but we got more war in the Middle East and Africa.

People voted Democrat to raise the minimum wage and see millions of new jobs created. But the minimum wage has barely risen and the only reason official unemployment figures are down is that his policies have pushed millions of people out of the formal workforce into increasingly precarious economic situations.

Whether you like the Greens or hate them, the thing to avoid is the menagerie, do not vote for an elephant or a donkey but pick a 3rd party or write-in a candidate of your own choosing, this November and every November hereafter, until we've drawn a consistent plurality for 'other', until we've established a virtual 'other' party, until we've developed a minimalist 'other' platform, until we've elected 'other' candidates from among ourselves on the other platform, until we're in control of the federal government.

Posted by: jfl | Aug 19 2016 10:52 utc | 151

@Piotr Berman | Aug 19, 2016 12:54:09 AM | 145

Thx for sharing you thoughts but you did not in any way countered my argument about opinions of the Poles on the street about Russia nowadays.

You talked about old times and official propaganda, of course being forced on the Polish puppet government by London and its "agentur" in Washington.

The elections were manipulated, but not directly, but indirectly with an over blown, and obviously supervised by some powerful forces, affair of "podsłuchy" (secret recordings) of the former government officials in some posh restaurants. There were very few examples indicative of corruption, but in general THERE WAS ABSOLUTELY NO DAMNING EVIDENCE JUSTIFYING fake media out and then opposition outcry about the affair. It was about 2 years ago, or so, and TO THIS DAY IT WAS NOT DISCOVERED WHO WAS BEHIND IT, and how it's possible to secretly record highest ranking officials in such public places. ABSOLUTELY NOT POSSIBLE.

So we have a party, who losses elections because of obviously fake affair. What's funny, some of the officials, like Radek Sikorski, say on those tapes very truthful things, e.g. that Poland has been doing a blowjob to the America in their relations, and expressed his disgust what a slave Poland has become to Washington. Hardly anything public could take against him.

And then the former government DID ALMOST EVERYTHING IT COULD NOT TO WIN the elections. It stinks a manipulation from a long distance.

Elections were a theater where one crew of London puppets was replaced by another one, much more hostile against Russia. About 5,5 million people voted for them, from about 25 million eligible, mostly because of that fake affair, former government play to purposefully loose and promises of social befits for families with more than on child by the contender.

Smoleńsk and associated anti-Russian sentiments are only a fringe.

So no, there is absolutely neither deep, nor widespread hatred toward Russia in the Polish society.

Polish-Russian relations where on a steep rise just before the Smoleński catastrophe, which has been a huge blow to those relations.

Posted by: ProPeace | Aug 19 2016 12:07 utc | 152

A little anecdote about NAFTA, from a tiny spot at the front row when it happened. Just after the treaty, mutual funds gave the wide public a chance to gain from that glorious event, and I availed myself of the opportunity. A mutual fund with "high yield performance" in name invested in government securities of NAFTA countries, heavily skewed toward Mexico. Peso denominated securities offered two-digit interest, while due to the NAFTA treaty the confidence in Mexico was booming (due to idiots like me, I am sorry to say) and peso was strong. As a result, Mexico was flooded by borrowing opportunities, so they did borrow. About a year later it dawned on ultra-smart analysts that Mexicans borrowed a bit more that they could repay, so institutions started to sell Mexican securities. It was really: tide of money in, tide of money out. The in-comming tsunami made Mexicans over-leveraged and temporarily happy, and the out-going wrecked the economy, and most notably to me, my poor (hitherto strong) peso. My observation is that a common theme in financial crises is artificially boosted confidence, duly blessed by Federal Reserve and any type of applicable financial authority, where IQ larger than 90 is not tolerated. Perhaps 110 is still OK, enough to write reports and follow the line: maintain economic growth in purely financial way, while removing one safety feature after another in the imitation of Chernobyl engineers. You see, when the experiment does not work with safety features in place, something has to go, right? And the choice is obvious (especially with properly limited IQ).

With all that, the negative impact of NAFTA was minor at worst, IMHO. If nothing else, Mexico is too small to "suck the jobs out of USA". More importantly, shifting production to Mexico relied on parts from USA and Canada so it was not leading to the total hollowing of American industry, but commendable specialization where "everybody wins". After all, the real choice is between giving some jobs to Mexicans there or here. Subsequent liberalization of trade, shift of more and more sophisticated industries to China, with the entire supply chain moving to Asia (sophisticated bits done in Japan, Taiwan and North Korea) is a different story. American pool of 20-30 million industrial workers competes on wages and conditions with a pool that is ten times larger, so it becomes an abandoned baby in a bath tub. Since this is "water under the bridge", I even do not know if the additional damage from the further trade liberalization is real or imagined.

I conclude that Trump has some sense, namely, some restrains on trade have to be restored, free competition "who can treat workers worse", where India looses to Bangladesh and self-combustible factories (the cheapest choice in some industries) can be a "universal engine of prosperity". However, letting him do the job seems like letting someone to try to fix your computer, while the person can use one tool only: sledgehammer.

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Aug 19 2016 12:31 utc | 153

FTB @ 147

Well said.

Posted by: paulmeli | Aug 19 2016 13:55 utc | 154

@147 -- "The problem about banking, it is not rocket science, ..."

Remember the "363 rule" ... "Borrow at 3%; loan at 6%; and be on the golf course by 3pm."

So, what went wrong...?


Posted by: x | Aug 19 2016 14:22 utc | 155

So September will be another MSM bashing Putin-bashing month.

MH17 criminal probe out next month - Dutch prosecutors

Initial results from a criminal probe into the downing of a Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 over war-torn Ukraine two years ago will be revealed next month, Dutch prosecutors said Friday. The results are expected to shed light on the exact type of missile used to shoot down the jetliner on July 17, 2014, killing all 298 passengers and crew on board, and exactly where it was fired from. “We have informed victims’ relatives that we will have a new meeting on September 28 where the results of the criminal investigation will be unveiled,” said Wim de Bruin, spokesman for the Dutch public prosecutor’s office. Next month’s meeting, to be held in Nieuwegein outside Utrecht in central Netherlands, will be open to relatives only in the morning, followed by a press conference. (AFP)

Posted by: Belo | Aug 19 2016 14:37 utc | 156

Right on cue... :-) Just what I've been recently pointing out:

Private Military Contractors Fighting US Wars

[..] Private military companies are multinational corporations that recruit globally. Moreover, the role, scope, and size of military contractors are never mentioned when there is a new announcement of a US troop deployment to Iraq or Syria.

There is a visible trend here. The United States has become dependent on the private sector to wage war to make it strategically vulnerable. The use of contractors in Syria confirms the fact that the US can no longer conduct operations without the private sector. The US combat forces would be impotent without them. No international laws exist to regulate the mercenary industry. The hiring of mercenaries is a common practice in the history of armed conflict and prohibited in the modern age by the United Nations Mercenary Convention, which the United States is not a signatory to. America has rejected the UN’s classification of PMCs as mercenaries.

With the contracts expired, the multi-billion-dollar industry is seeking new clientele. Consequently, the market for force is expanding, finding new supply and demand. Recently, mercenaries have appeared in many combat zones in the Middle East, Africa and Ukraine hired by the Ukrainian government. The US’s heavy reliance on military contractors both increased their numbers and also de facto legitimized their use. Now other countries and consumers are following the US lead, globalizing the industry. Mercenaries are incentivized to start and expand war for profit. Out of work private soldiers may become a destabilizing factor to spark and sustain conflicts and undermine stability. More professional mercenaries looking for money means more conflicts – this is one of the lessons learnt from the European Middle Ages. They change the ways wars are fought and the world order functions. Non-state actors – anyone who has the means, like ultra-wealthy people and multinational corporations – may wage wars of their own.

The US let the genie out of the bottle to create a threat to global security. It is responsible for what it has done.

The news about the US plans to hire PMCs to accomplish certain missions in Syria comes at the time when Russia and the United States are engaged in talks on establishing a system of cooperation to fight the common enemy in that country. The US-hired private military contractors may do quite a different thing to undermine the process. There will be no one accountable for their actions. Is there any way to make sure PMCs will comply with the Russia-US would-be agreement? Is there any way to guarantee PMCs will respect the accords achieved at the UN-sponsored Geneva talks? Can the US be trusted under the circumstances? What will the seasoned private warriors do when the contract in Syria is expired? Will they facilitate peace management process even if it clearly does not meet their interests? Will the next US president include the problem into his or her agenda? Will he or she continue Obama’s policy of increasingly relying on PMCs to wage wars or try to turn the tide? Nobody has ever asked a US presidential candidate about his or her attitude to this policy.

There are many questions unanswered as the issue of US using private military contractors is barely highlighted and is kept out of public discourse without being discussed neither in the US, nor internationally. But the dangerous trend is there with global implications to ensue.

Posted by: ProPeace | Aug 19 2016 15:07 utc | 157

...and how it's possible to secretly record highest ranking officials in such public places. ABSOLUTELY NOT POSSIBLE.
Posted by: ProPeace | Aug 19, 2016 8:07:50 AM | 152

That's not quite right. Even amateur bugging devices were quite sophisticated in the mid-1980s. I bought a few from a specialist magazine back then, on a what-the-heck basis, including a long-range microphone. They were dirt cheap (less than $40 each) and worked very well.
Have a poke around on the www and buy one or two that take your fancy. 30+ years on, I guarantee you'll be shocked at how good modern bugs are (even if they haven't improved).

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Aug 19 2016 15:10 utc | 158

Gordon at 109 thanks for reminding me of Gail the Actuary. I remember her from when she was an editor - staff? at the Oil Drum. Two others who are good on energy/finance links are Nicole Foss and Jean-Marc Jancovici (a French engineer, all in French, link.)

Jancovici has several times given expert testimony to the F Gvmt. One can see some of these hearings on youtube. Amazing, he is called as an expert witness, and he is even heckled, booed! The rest of the time the officials act cynical, bored, put-upon, what is this tiresome stuff, leave the room, etc., and when question time comes round, they ask the dopeist things just to show they are present…He is always asked, “What is the solution?” and his answer is that depends on how you describe the situation, what the problems are, and what you want to achieve with a ‘solution’…He has become wary and defensive…

Posted by: Noirette | Aug 19 2016 16:06 utc | 159

@Hoarsewhisperer | Aug 19, 2016 11:10:41 AM | 158

The thing is that those venues frequented by the officials, and the staff there, were thoroughly checked on regular basis by the government security agents just for that purpose - to prevent any secret recording. That's SOP.

Yet, the recordings were made. "simple mistakes" used for "plausible deniability", no serious sentencing for anybody, just some slap on the wrist for that gross negligence. Imagine if some state secrets were discussed. It's a phony affair.

Posted by: ProPeace | Aug 19 2016 17:13 utc | 160

Manafort is dumped.
Trump will be dumped in November. What a complete snake-oil salesman.. He probably did run just to aid the Clinton campaign

Posted by: bbbb | Aug 19 2016 17:25 utc | 161

Posted by: ProPeace | Aug 19, 2016 1:13:46 PM | 160

Sorry if you thought I was trying to undermine your theory. But you seem blissfully unaware of eavesdropping devices and techniques. I found a reference to a device mentioned in Spy Catcher (a bygone era). There's some very clever stuff out there and The Thing is in a museum and circa 70 years old...

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Aug 19 2016 18:01 utc | 162

I know I post too much, but I could not resist, sorry. :-)

The Unbearable Awesomeness of the U.S. Military

Unrepentant, always wrong, U.S. warmongers Michael O’Hanlon and David Petraeus have authored “America’s Awesome Military: And How to Make It Even Better,” to explain to the rest of us that there is absolutely nothing wrong with the greatest American frack-yeah military ever AND that it is in such a pitiably weak state that if trillions more aren’t wasted on it we’re all going to die.

Remember, this is the same military of which a single branch has just recently misplaced $6.5 trillion. And it needs more money. Why? Because it’s soooooooooo damn awesome!

In fact it’s about to win the wars it’s embroiled in in Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria, Yemen, Pakistan, Somalia, and Libya, but if you don’t fork over trillions more it will lose badly and it’ll be all your fault and the ghosts of the betrayed and sacred troops will haunt you instead of haunting the admissions offices of broken down VA hospitals.[..]

Posted by: ProPeace | Aug 19 2016 18:15 utc | 163

Posted by: ProPeace | Aug 19, 2016 8:07:50 AM | 152

You are quite well informed, and one can always focus of half-full and half-empty glass. Concerning "afera podsłuchowa", taping scandal, four people are accused and two admitted their role: two businessmen hired two restaurant waiters to bug the customers of a Warsaw restaurant popular in government and business circles. There is a suspicion that the businessman (the other was his aid) was aided by former (and current?) functionaries of the secret police who wanted their political party to return to power, which worked, and the businessmen refuse to testify. Under current government the vestigial independence of the prosecution of abolished so the trial may be postponed indefinitely.

However, perhaps even more important was bold populism of PiS which promised two items that were deemed "budget breakers" by the government parties: 500 zl (125 USD) per month for "every child" (done but with quite many exceptions) and decreasing the retirement age by ca. 5 years (that may really break the budget, PiS plays it very slowly). This is what is called "right wing" in Poland. They are also very energetic in blowing mini-scandals out of proportion and spinning yarn according to the principle "ciemny lud to kupi" (ignorant masses will buy it). And the most energetic fire-breathing Russophobe, current Minister of Defense, spent the election campaign in hiding. The bottom line is that internal squabbles are so fascinating that "nobody" pays attention to international relations, and the elites do what they want, which comes in two flavor: the current "we hate everybody but Russia most" and the former and future flavor "we kiss Americans behinds and suck their fronts and then we sadly drink and complain that we get no respect" (Radek Sikorski complaint about his own behavior).

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Aug 19 2016 18:22 utc | 164

@Hoarsewhisperer | Aug 19, 2016 2:01:48 PM | 162

No need to be sorry. :-)

I said "impossible" before, not because I did not know how amazing modern tech is, but because of the security protocols I forgot to mention.

Yes, I should buy me one of them toys one day...

Posted by: ProPeace | Aug 19 2016 18:24 utc | 165

@Piotr Berman | Aug 19, 2016 2:22:51 PM | 164

You laid it out quite eloquently. Thank you.

But I would like to emphasize the most is - there is no widespread, deep hatred of Russians in the Polish society, and it wasn't the reason why the current anti-Russian government was elected.

Posted by: ProPeace | Aug 19 2016 18:31 utc | 166

Yes, I should buy me one of them toys one day...
Posted by: ProPeace | Aug 19, 2016 2:24:00 PM | 165

I was half joking. They're fairly useless in a day to day sense.
My what-the-heck was about buying intriguing stuff out of curiosity and selling it when curiosity was satisfied.

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Aug 19 2016 19:56 utc | 167

The Growth Industry That is Anti-Russian Propaganda

Western Value... Making a Killing in Yemen

Posted by: Mann | Aug 19 2016 20:01 utc | 168

‘Unacceptable if we’re not in’: Turkey says it aims to be part of EU by 2023

“The Turkish government wants to join the EU by 2023. That year the Turkish republic will celebrate its 100th anniversary. It would be an achievement for my country to become a member by that time,” Selim Yenel, Turkey's ambassador to the EU, told German newspaper Die Welt on Friday.

The new Erdogan? Partner of Russia, Iran, China? He's as unreliable as they come. Realignment will have to wait till Turkey's next life.

Posted by: jfl | Aug 19 2016 20:25 utc | 169

And the hits just keep on comin'.

After extensive documentation of Manafort's illegal activities as an unregistered agent for Yanukovich's Party of Regions and its successor, the Opposition Bloc, he has resigned from his now-figurehead role in The Trump Campaign(TM).

New Cold War conveniently presents some of the best information and analysis on this contratemps. The lead article by Paul Robinson, of Univ. of Ottawa, on Trump's Ukrainian Connection, debunks the "pro-Russian" angle.

This is a misnomer. Yanukovich and his party were only pro-Russian to the extent that they were not Ukrainian nationalists or avidly pro-Western. They drew most of their support from Ukraine’s Russian-speaking population, especially although not exclusively in the south and east of the country....

Yanukovich, in fact, resisted Russian efforts to persuade Ukraine to join the Eurasian Union, and was far from being opposed to closer relations with Western Europe. One of the major reasons why Yanukovich’s November 2013 decision not to sign an association agreement with the European Union caused an uproar was that he himself had been promising such an agreement for a long time. Had the EU offered him acceptable terms, he almost certainly would have signed up.

He also notes that Moscow found former PM Yulia Timoshenko a more amenable figure, pointing out that the present regime imprisoned her for her supposedly unpatriotic gas deal. All of the various actors during the Maidan coup were interested in their local holdings and revenues, "not pursuing alliances with this or that foreign power. As a Russian official once put it to me, ‘Yanukovich isn’t pro-Russian, he’s pro-Yanukovich’."

While the situation does not look good for Manafort, Mrs. Clinton is stretching the truth, though not in a manner atypical for a scrappy politico. "It may suit the Clinton campaign to use this story to suggest that Trump and the Kremlin are closely connected, but this story doesn’t show anything of the sort."

We know about Mrs. Clinton's foreign ties (via foundation donors, etc.) because she has reported them. The assumption behind these sort of "sunshine laws" is that if folks know where you get the money from, they can draw what conclusions they may. I rather like the notion of making politicians wear sponsor logos, like NASCAR drivers and cars. The idea has been kicking around since the late 1990's, apparently.

But what do we really know about The Donald's finances and interests? He has some lame excuse about not releasing his tax returns, like every recent Presidential nominee. Did he see a kindred spirit regarding disclosure in Manafort?

New Cold War also reproduces articles from the NYT and AP providing details of Manafort's activities. They were fairly routine business -- for registered foreign agents. But how well would that status play among the Tea Party "patriots"?

Posted by: rufus magister | Aug 19 2016 23:32 utc | 170

Here's a link to an interesting thread via the above referenced Walid, concerning the fates of one family, two brothers, and numerous dead cousins, more real/fake schizoid drama for the 'meh' western masses.

Posted by: hejiminy cricket | Aug 19 2016 23:45 utc | 171

.... it wasn't the reason why the current anti-Russian government was elected.

Posted by: ProPeace | Aug 19, 2016 2:31:23 PM | 166

Democracy in practice is the art of pyramid ownership scheme. You have majority of shares in a company that has majority of shares in a larger company etc. There are also classes of shares etc. In UK, party machines control who belongs to leadership and are/were largely independent from members and voters, choosing the optimum way to gather political capital, i.e. the votes and seats, and how to spend it on pet policies of the elite. I mention UK only because right now Tory went through leadership selection, while UKIP and Labour are in the process, and various disconnects are nicely being discussed, and some can be observed, main information sources having no paywalls and posted on the Web in English. And it is amazing how elite fetishes are pursued to the point of political suicide. Take current brouhaha in Labour Party. Corbyn was hated from day 1, but what (allegedly) caused his merry MPs to rebel was his insufficient enthusiasm for EU. He duly campaign for Remain, but he was totally awful! Like, he kept mentioning that this about EU is nice, and that he would personally change, no single minded dedication that the hour of need required! For shame! For shame!

In fact, that attitude could be exactly what Labour needs to gain votes of Euro-sceptics. Europa is nice, and used to be a princess beyond compare, but now she is a bit long on tooth and out of shape, hard to see Zeus turning into a bull and kidnapping her as she is right now. Faking total adoration is precisely what would assure slow suicide of Labour. And Corbyn does not adore Israel, bombing Syria for the sake of ... children (I guess) and so on. And he does not adore the Trident! And he at best lukewarm toward Israel -- saying that we cannot blame Jews for the policies of the State of Israel that should be adored by any unbiased moral person. Awful, awful heartless person. But a lot of public accepts that, and without backbiting he could perfectly reposition Labour to the post-Brexit reality.

In Poland every single party of note is lead by people supporting anti-Russian policies. Politically, Zmiana and similar outfit are irrelevant. It is hard to tell if this is truly supported by more than 50% of the public or not. The percentages of supports of Israel in the elite and society are clearly inconsistent and lopsided. But until a rider on a white horse appears to lead reasonable folks, the rot will continue. But the Euro-Atlantic elite may experience surprises elsewhere, perhaps the "axis of southern step children of the Euro", Portugal, Spain, Italy, Hungary, Czech republic and Slovakia with ripple effects, perhaps Bulgaria, Austria, Denmark and more? Southern Stream is a very clever priority for Putin.

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Aug 20 2016 0:02 utc | 172

The Trump Brownshirts are coming

I don't watch that TV thingie but see enough references to the media to "see which way the wind is blowing". Its blowing fascist in this Trump ad:

Posted by: psychohistorian | Aug 20 2016 3:02 utc | 173


I watched the ad... I don't see Brownshirts... am I blind?

Posted by: crone | Aug 20 2016 3:10 utc | 174

@173- so called liberals would have already shriveled up and blown away were it not for their willingness to combat fake fascist demons come election time.

Posted by: hejiminy cricket | Aug 20 2016 3:20 utc | 175

@ crone

I do wonder if you read the title and associated story. Here is the title for others
Trump Campaign Ad Puts Border Militia on Par With US Enforcement Agencies

Here is a link to the history of the original Brown shirts. I trust other folks can see the similarities.

Posted by: psychohistorian | Aug 20 2016 3:31 utc | 176

Here is a posting about China and global finance.

Posted by: psychohistorian | Aug 20 2016 4:30 utc | 177 Four people Arkancided in one month: All knew bad stuff about the DNC.
Assange has promised to release more Hillary stuff just before the election. His lawyer was Arkancided August 15.

Hillary's health records August 9; leaker is dead August 11. Subcortical vascular dementia, also called Binswanger's disease, is caused by widespread, microscopic areas of damage to the brain resulting from the thickening and narrowing (atherosclerosis) of arteries that supply blood to the subcortical areas of the brain.

Posted by: Penelope | Aug 20 2016 5:00 utc | 178

psychohistorian@8 from the Hasaka threa: "...Why are commercial airplanes over Portland doing major flight change and S curves about 11 am PDT? I saw the contrails of 3, 2 that had made significant diversions and one with a big S turn and then kinda back on course..."

Sorry - working late and couldn't do much checking. Nothing on it from the tin-foil hat posse FWIW. This is Flightradar24's picture of the commercial traffic over Portland starting at 11 A.M. local (1800 UCT). Nothing obvious doing the big S-turns you're describing, so it was probably military. Mil flights do not have to use transponders in the same mode as commercial aircraft. There are several modes of operation, and Flughtradar24 (and similar sites) use a particular query/reply mode called ADS-B. It gives basic information like aircraft ID, speed, heading and altitude. Air traffic controllers do not need ADS-B to see aircraft - they have other ways of identifying .mil flights and keeping them separate.

The government use to do air sampling of the jet stream during Fukushima using strange S-shaped patterns. Portland was on an inside turn of the jetstream at 1800 UCT today - the spot where radionuclides concentrate/fall out. The frozen donut scheme for groundwater containment at Fukushima has been failing rather spectacularly. Maybe they're flying Constant Phoenix flights to see how much we're being cooked today. Those are always secret if they're done for environmental radiation monitoring, so we'll never know either way.

I'll let you know if I hear anything about it, but nobody has mentioned it on the intertubes so far. Maybe I'll start some rumors about UFOs diverting commercial air traffic - those are always a big hit, and you KNOW the government would cover it up anyway!

Posted by: PavewayIV | Aug 20 2016 5:31 utc | 179

@ PavewayIV - 179

Thanks for the follow up. I read somewhere today that they are spraying for the zika virus in Florida......maybe Oregon now too...grin

On to another issue. Reading the Trump/Manafort breakup and Manafort's background makes me thing Trump is running his campaign to insure Clinton II's success and pay off some sort of huuuuuuge debt to the global elite.

Posted by: psychohistorian | Aug 20 2016 6:39 utc | 180

The "Dear Colonel" is losing it:
He cannot bear "tendentious BS" and cannot be "lectured", i.e. even the slightest understatements that may be, just may be, the US is not the pinnacle of civilization are not welcome.
Cognitive dissonance will alas kill one of the best sources of serious information.

Posted by: acrimonious | Aug 20 2016 6:54 utc | 181

Turkish Stream Gambit: Putin lays the pipe on Erdogan

On August 9th, there was a meeting between the Presidents of Russia and Turkey. In general, for the package of proposals for a new Russian-Turkish rapprochement, the important part is played by the energy projects. Some experts in Russia believe that those are actually the main reason of the unexpected reconciliation with Ankara, and perhaps the only one.

President Putin's meeting with Erdogan seems to have opened up new possibilities for the realization of the alternative Southern pipelines. According to Erdogan’s words in Saint Petersburg, Ankara is ready to provide gas supplies to Europe via the "Turkish Stream" in case of a resumption of the project.

This sounds like another opportunity for Erdogan to blackmail both Russia and the EU, using Russia's gas and her pipelines to do so.

But the eve of Erdogan's visit to Russia was followed by another important statement in the energy sector.

On August 8th, the Prime Minister Borisov of Bulgaria said that Bulgaria and Russia agreed to set up working groups in order to restore the previously canceled energy projects, including the construction of the gas pipeline "South Stream". The words of the Bulgarian Prime Minister were corrected the next day by Vladimir Putin: “The Bulgarian side would like to return to this project. But we suffered some losses due to the failure of the European partners on the project. Now some intentions are not enough, we absolutely need a reinforced concrete guarantee of legal nature".

... that sounds like a better proposition for both Russia and the EU. By the time it comes on line the EU will have learned not to follow the US' orders ... "Let's you and them fight" ... any longer. Well, at least one would hope so. That will require the actual European people to get up on their hind legs and sever the bans between the EU and the USA, though, the USA has the EU personnel themselves bought, lock, stock, and barrel.

Posted by: jfl | Aug 20 2016 11:29 utc | 182

20;Ah, Henry ford,the antisemite!
Wapo today had a story on his failed attempt,a century ago, to build a workers village in Brazil to mine rubber.The monsters never sleep in their divide and conquer,and their animosities never die..

Posted by: dahoit | Aug 20 2016 13:02 utc | 183

122;Weren't the Rus vikings?I'm not up on Russian history,but I do remember that being said in Nat Geo a while ago.

Posted by: dahoit | Aug 20 2016 13:20 utc | 184

@Penelope | Aug 20, 2016 1:00:25 AM | 178 Thanks for the update. Some good news:

WikiLeaks: Vote Rigging Class Action Lawsuit Against DNC Moves Forward

Posted by: ProPeace | Aug 20 2016 13:25 utc | 185

in re 174 --

Yeah, apparently. Substitute "Make America Great Hats" for "Brownshirts." Street-fighting thugs intimidating their political opponents. How many people have gotten beaten up and thrown out for The D**khead Donald's rally. Isn't his call for "Second Amendment Remedies" a veiled threat of a "Casino Hall Putsch"? The torchlight marches will be huuuuge!

psycho at 176 --

Thank's for an interesting site. A picture is worth a thousand words.

For those who've forgotten about the Minutemen, the item you cite describes them as "self-appointed mercenaries, standing guard to 'secure the border' for America and 'keep our families safe.'" The name is a reference, of course, to the Massachusetts militia who stood at "the rude bridge that arched the flood." That would be the old-fashioned, "well-regulated miiitia" the Second Amendment specifies. As opposed to random crazies packing semi-automatic rifles.

Posted by: rufus magister | Aug 20 2016 13:32 utc | 187

173;The brownshirts are the ziomonsters,witness their total theft of our govt into the Israeli Foreign Legion,and what American doesn't want border control?
And the illiberal meme that Trump is throwing the election is prime Hell Bot BS,and is sign of either gullibility in believing serial liars,or one is a serial liar themselves.
Manafort had the Russian Ukrainian issue,which the monsters would have used as a hit on Trump as a Russian agent.Simple.

Posted by: dahoit | Aug 20 2016 13:33 utc | 188

paul at 140. We are going to vote on that in Switz: money creation will be Gvmt. controlled thru the central bank, (link top of goog.) That might sound no better, but one has to delve into the CH constitution / pol.-gvmt. structure to understand that the Central Bank is quite tightly controlled, etc.

I don’t expect it will be accepted, but it is a start. The debates will sure be interesting.

Posted by: Noirette | Aug 20 2016 14:17 utc | 189

Correction to 188 -- "Which opponents will continue to use as a hit on Trump as a Russian agent." It's likely to have some effect, even though it is not true, at least on the basis of this evidence, as I suggested at 170.

Posted by: rufus magister | Aug 20 2016 14:21 utc | 190

New Cold War bird-dogged a nice rebuttal of some Atlantic Council fluff. The author warns investors away from losing their money in the Ukraine. It is the sort of occasional frank and open exchange of views amongst the elite that

For those unfamiliar with the Council, it's a minor-league Council on Foreign Relations. They are a big booster of the Banderaist regime in Kiev. The main argument that the orginal piece seems to make is that the investment climate is improving because the younger generation of is better with PR. And the Canadians are in, so it must be OK.

“What impressed the Canadians was the quality of a lot of the Ukrainian presenters,” he [Ambassador of Canada to the Ukraine Roman Waschuk, part of the rabidly nationalist Ukrainian emigration] said of last month’s forum in Toronto. “As you have the new generation of Ukrainian officials who are able to discuss and package properties and deals in ways that are understandable to Western fund managers, you have these [Canadian] fund managers taking a second look at Ukraine.”

Thomas Theiner would beg to difer. "Every roulette table in Las Vegas is more promising than Ukraine. I know from personal experience."

The naive liberals thought their EuroMaidan would end the corruption endemic in the post-Soviet Ukrainian economy. This beautiful dream was subverted by Pravyi Sektor and other assorted ultra-nationalists and fascists.

After the Euromaidan, Ukraine was supposed to be a modern, European country.

That hasn’t happened. By now, it is clear that the corrupt and thieving government-mafia clans are still in charge....

Even today, it’s impossible for a foreign businessman to start a company in Ukraine without being harassed for bribes. If you pay, they just demand more; if you don’t pay, you won’t succeed at all....

Let’s assume you finally got your company registered. Tax inspectors will then harass you for bribes; safety inspectors will threaten to close your offices unless you pay a bribe; customs officials will block your trucks unless you pay a bribe; and if your business grows, politicians will send the mafia to demand a share. You cannot win. If you refuse and resist, your business will be ruined; if you surrender and pay, your profit will disappear, and over time you will lose your business altogether....

If you’re set on wealth destruction, go to Las Vegas. The roulette wheels aren’t rigged, the croupier won’t hit you over the head with his rake and mug you, the rules won’t change midway, and your co-players won’t pay the casino to beat you up if you win.

And so this then would be the sort of people in Kiev we Americans are aiding and abetting. I'd put my money on the Russian Federation and the Donbas republics.

So Kiev looks to be shaking the dice, but will they really roll them? Who do they expect to cover their bet?

I find it puzzling that Kiev continues to keep the pressure on over their failed sabotage incursion into the Crimea. Bloomberg has an account of the Banderaists' assertions. Poroshenko says he fears an imminent Russian invasion.

The only likely scenario involving Russian troops entering the territory of the Ukraine would be in response to an invasion of Novorossiya by the UAF. I can't see how this is in anybody's real interest.

I suppose it is related to a behind-the-scenes struggle amongst the various Ukrainian nationalist factions. IF there is an invasion, THEN we must all rally 'round our Fearless Leader.

You might recall that there was earlier this summer a shake-up of the Cabinet and a reshuffling of the Rada majority after Yatsenyuk effectively lost a confidence vote. I believe this is why various militias were sent to the front, after gingering up the conflict by shelling the People's Republics. Get the most volatile elements away from the capital during the uncertainty and instability.

So with continued "rumors of wars" Poroshenko keeps his opponents' heads down and gives his American patrons the chance to lay some way cool military bling on their peeps. Officially, we are asking both sides to chill.

There is the risk that some of the military will get antsy, however, and stage a free-lance provocation.

Posted by: rufus magister | Aug 20 2016 15:40 utc | 191

oops, errata at 191 -- The sort of analysis of actual reality ".... that they need to have to actually conduct business and git 'er done." Always interesting and informative moments in bourgeois discourse.

Posted by: rufus magister | Aug 20 2016 15:45 utc | 192

Self-organization in precipitation reactions far from the equilibrium

The rational design of systems that create complex materials and functional devices by externally controlled self-organization holds great promise for modern materials science (1). Progress toward this goal requires an understanding of how materials synthesis is affected by transport processes, steep concentration gradients, and other factors that arise from reaction conditions far from the equilibrium. A plethora of examples, providing inspiration and proof of concept, is found among biological systems that use nonconventional bottom-up strategies to produce remarkable materials. For instance, biominerals, such as bones and tooth enamel, are strikingly different from—and in many ways, superior to—the crystal structures formed near the thermodynamic equilibrium by direct mixing of the reactants (2). Instead of bulk crystals or individual nanoparticles with tailored but limited properties, these natural materials typically consist of thousands of nanosized building blocks that assemble into functionality-enhancing hierarchies of structures. The most important initial challenge for the production of similar, nonbiological materials is the selection of suitable model systems that can serve as stepping stones toward technologically relevant applications; however, even for simple systems, progress can be expected to be slow, unless theoretical research develops mechanistic models. Because of the complexity of the involved processes and the wide range of relevant length scales, these models also present unique computational challenges that need to be met to arrive at a paradigm shift from current synthetic approaches to controlled, “lifelike” nonequilibrium methods.

Is it an accident that the same metaphors that drive our mastery of the 'external', 'lower-order' physical world seem so applicable to our 'unique', 'higher-order' social world? Is there really more than just a perceived difference between the two?

Posted by: jfl | Aug 20 2016 15:58 utc | 193

@189 Noirette, 'one has to delve into the CH constitution / pol.-gvmt. structure to understand that the Central Bank is quite tightly controlled, etc. '

The Swiss are famous for their money. Mike Gravel tried to make them as famous for their politics, he used the Swiss initiative as the basis for his Ni4d, which I am trying to 'fix' and advocate. I think democracy is the key to solving all of our problems. Yeah, the debates will sure be interesting.

Posted by: jfl | Aug 20 2016 16:09 utc | 194

A link from Noirette's leads to an Interview with Dr Emma Dawnay on the Swiss referendum on monetary reform, which confirms that the proposed Swiss reform is literally based upon Huber and Robertson's Creating New Money, and presents a one-page summary of the book, if you feel you don't have time or inclination to read 'the whole thing' - it's only a hundred pages.

Posted by: jfl | Aug 20 2016 16:41 utc | 195

The misfits left behind by the society are picked by the evil oligarchy and turned into criminals (using Tavistock, MK ULTRA/ Monarch techniques in Gitmo, Rahm Emanuel's dungeons in Chicago and elsewhere) later terrorizing that society into divided, conquered, dysfunctional colonies - breeding grounds for such misfits. Also feeding the private prison industry.

All the "terrorists" in the US have been FBI informants, many of them intellectually impaired, morally confused, people "with problems". Look it up.

I've been suggesting that we have to break this vicious circle.

New system is needed, new social contracts that would leave no person behind and ensure equal chances at the start line. Such ideas have been tried before with the national socialism in Germany, communism in the Soviet Union but were purposefully undermined, compromised, twisted to give those ideas bad names and to close off that avenue of progress for the human mind.

Democracy is a trap, it's not good for everybody. Some people can only function well under dictatorship, like in current "communist/capitalist" China. Popular democracy is an illusion, trapping people into thinking that they have choice, while in reality it's been a mob rule benefiting the criminal top oligarchy. Nowadays Russia and some EU countries may be exceptions.

The right to vote should be given based on merit points accounted for by some transparent system. Those who do not care about voting, or waste their votes should not be able to affect negatively those who value high their to elect their representatives. Voting should not be anonymous.

Election cycles should be shorter, society cannot afford at this time and age to be stuck for 2-3 years with corrupt and erroneous officials. Presently costs of prolonging bad rule are much higher than those of organizing frequent, say yearly, elections. A good political crew can achieve A LOT within a year. If they perform well, they will have their contract extended by another year, people willing. It's simple.

Of course basic education and healthcare should be free, but abuses should be punished. Society cannot pay for unhealthy lifestyles of individuals.

There should be many more checks and balances for the government, built in the system and triggered automatically when abuses occur. Too many shady deals behind the closed doors are conducted within the public good agencies, law enforcement, "justice" systems.

Unlimited individual growth of personal and corporate wealth - the holy grail of the neolibcon empire - should be capped before it becomes cancerous.

The prophets and the preachers of the empire hail extreme individualism and castigate any hint of collectivism whereas a balance should be struck between the two.

We work too much bordering on slave labor. 4 days week is enough. We are lied about needed "productivity" while the oligarchy lives lavish life of indulgence worrying only about their new sensual adventures and maintaining proper appearances for the masses.

One day in the week, probably Friday, should be mandatory for all people to participate in community work, to better know one another, to meet people from jails, prisons, hospices, orphanages, hospitals, senior houses to openly discuss what went wrong, why bad things happened, how to help in recovery, how to use accumulated experience.

Religions should loose their privileged status, no more untaxed millions. Same with "non-profit' foundations.

Public control and oversight over media, no more huge conglomerates. Public debates should be the core programming.

Posted by: ProPeace | Aug 20 2016 17:03 utc | 196

One more thing about why anonymous voting is such a nonsense.

Actually you should be proud of your vote and your candidate. If you have to hide that decisions, it means that there is something wrong either with you, or with the system.

You should also be able to explain plainly at any time why you voted for your candidate, actually this should be on you voting card, just one paragraph long.

Oftentimes on the Internet fora I openly, and others too, admit who I voted for. I'm not ashamed, why would I?

What's also very important, when signed voting cards are a matter of public record available to anybody, voter fraud is instantly eliminated. Votes could be checked, recounted by any time, as many times as needed, to make sure there was no cheating and the result remains the same. Any individual could check that his/her vote has not been tampered with. Everything simple, transparent, with reproducible results, like in science.

Named voting would also force people to take full responsibility for deeds of the officials they elect. No more unaccountability for those, who elect genocidal monsters like G. W. Bush, and thus cause bloodshed, despair and human suffering. Those who voted for Bushes 2nd term would've thought twice before casting their ballot if they'd had to sign it.

So there is absolutely no need for secret voting in a free and open society.

It only serves as a tool for the criminal global oligarchy to implement mob rule.

Posted by: ProPeace | Aug 20 2016 21:22 utc | 197

Also if your chosen candidate becomes corrupt, it's in your interest to disavow him/her. Thus it keeps you engaged in the process, you cannot stay numb and indifferent to what's going on.

Posted by: ProPeace | Aug 20 2016 21:25 utc | 198

@rufus magister | Aug 20, 2016 11:40:11 AM | 191

On the Canada-Ukraine decades-long connections:

When You Slow-Dance with the Devil, You Can't See His Face ...

Canada Represents a Reservoir of Support for Ukrainian Neo-Nazis

On Canada's increasing belligerence (London's orders of course imho):

From peacekeeper to war profiteer: Canada now the second biggest arms exporter to Middle East

Posted by: ProPeace | Aug 20 2016 23:29 utc | 199

RT Spanish is covering Hillary's illness pretty bigtime-- now calling it aphasia. No mention of the original leaker's death. Even went back to a June 10 video clip which plays and replays exaggerated head movements. I've been saying since she publicly cackled over Gaddafi's death that she's on drugs. There's all that incontinent laughter too.

Here's RT

I've agreed w b from the beginning that she's not going to be Prez. Negatives too high. Looks like maybe TPTB have decided who to substitute as a candidate. I still think it's Biden's if he wants it, and he does. I always thought it was fishy that he didn't run, and speculated that he might have a more direct route.

Posted by: Penelope | Aug 21 2016 3:01 utc | 200

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