Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
December 16, 2018

The MoA Week In Review - OT 2018-68

Last week's posts on Moon of Alabama:

When reading about the 'Integrity Initiative' please keep in mind that it is only one of many similar organizations that various governments, companies and interest groups use to spread their self-serving propaganda.

The last piece is, with some 3,600 words after cuts, way too long for a usual Moon of Alabama post. But I felt it was important to detail how the seemingly unconnected issues we watched over the last year fit into each other. Some related stuff, like the issues mention in the Wikileaks tweet below, did not make the cut. Anyway, it took quite an effort to write it. Please spread it wide and far.


bigger

Use as open thread ...

Posted by b on December 16, 2018 at 12:46 PM | Permalink

Comments

You are producing some amazing journalism b and I hope you get proper recognition for it someday.

Thank you for your efforts.

Posted by: psychohistorian | Dec 16, 2018 12:55:57 PM | 1

Exploiting Khashoggi's assassination: the neoliberal predators hang over Saudi Arabia

Posted by: Never Mind the Bollocks | Dec 16, 2018 1:00:10 PM | 2

thanks b... i second psychohistorians comment to you! i have passed the article around.. hopefully others will benefit as i have, from understanding more of what is at play in the world today...

here is craig murrays latest which some will welcome...
https://www.craigmurray.org.uk/archives/2018/12/peoples-vote-in-danger-of-becoming-war-criminal-rehabilitation/

Posted by: james | Dec 16, 2018 1:18:51 PM | 3

https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2018-12-16/no-wall-any-form-govt-shutdown-odds-explode-amid-trump-schumer-standoff

Israel has built a wall -- Schumer rejoiced

Israel has been blocking all emigres but Jewish -- Schumer rejoiced

The US wants to build a wall to assure a controlled emigration -- Schumer is enraged

"Why Does Senator Charles Schumer Support a Border Wall for Israel, but Not the United States?" https://www.debatepolitics.com/israel-palestine/340476-why-does-senator-charles-schumer-support-border-wall-israel-but-not-united-states-2.html

Posted by: Anya | Dec 16, 2018 1:49:42 PM | 4

Just putting out here how Pamela Anderson's Twitter feed has become one of the most essential intellectual left microblogs out there. In recent weeks, she's put out stuff on the Green New Deal, Adam Curtis's interview with the Economist, endorsements of Mèlenchon and Sanders, Yemen, Srecko Horvat, MSF Aquarius, and Lexit. Pretty amazing, she appears to know what she's talking about and fully comprehends it like Roger Waters and unlike Kanye. https://mobile.twitter.com/pamfoundation

Posted by: Blooming Barricade | Dec 16, 2018 2:49:18 PM | 5

Also hilarious how all of the most vehement anti-Corbyn RussiaGaters have been so masked in the past week as UK government/NATO/Tory agents, Carole Cadwalladr, Nick Cohen, James Ball, etc. If the corporate and state media (BBC, Times, Guardian) weren't compromised by these leaks and actually reported the real news then this would lead to resignations and mass shaming like Ramparts's exposure of the Congress for Cultural Freedom, but then, the whole mood of the times is far less woke than it was in 67/68.....

Posted by: Blooming Barricade | Dec 16, 2018 2:55:52 PM | 6

Below is a link from Reuters about the Bureau of International Settlements (BIS) covering its ass before the coming crash

Regulators need joined up thinking to spot derivatives risks: BIS

Derivatives are bets on the the future value of things that the holders do not have any ownership in.....casino gambling on a global scale.

The take away quote:
"
Clearing houses are processing large notional values of interest rate and credit default swaps equivalent to 4.4 times the world’s economic output, up from 2.8 times in 2008 when Lehman Brothers bank went bust.
"

When the music stops and these folks come to the negotiating table saying that they bet the right way and therefore own everything, will they be basing their arguments on some global rule-of-law or the Western rules based system?

Posted by: psychohistorian | Dec 16, 2018 3:43:21 PM | 7

Imho, the ‘W - fake democracy’ narrative that different pol. parties represent different groups of ppl / sections of society / contrary pol opinions / visions of the future, etc. has to be given up.

The parties don’t represent anybody but themselves, aka those who are active and in control and in receipt of financial rewards - in many cases from moneyed forces behind the curtains. Natch’ USA Dems vs. Reps provide a magnificent example.

For France: Le Monde compared the core demands, 49 of them (note, they are informal and not officialised) of the Gilets Jaunes to propositions from / by pol. parties, figures.

In the link, the face of the pol figure is circled with two green circles if the measure was specifically put forth, and with one green circle if it was suggested, endorsed, but perhaps not outlined in detail, or slightly different.

Examining only the err radical left Mélenchon, and the populist right Le Pen (though for others it is instructive..):

Ex. the G J are demanding a minimum wage of 1,300 euros, and Mélenchon proposed 1,360, this is considered the same.

(Repeating, Macron did not propose / decree upping the minimum wage, but obfuscated with other measures, the eng.-lang MSM covers this up. If he had increased the min. wage the protests might just have stopped.)

Scrolling thru the list, even without being able to read F, it is obvious that Mélenchon and Le Pen — + the Gilets Jaunes — are proposing exactly the same things, and that some of the propositions are standard and supported by every pol figure - e.g. to increase financial support for handicapped ppl, to favor transport by rail vs. truck (all agree)…

Yet, the touted desperate enmity between the rad left and the pop right is insisted on at every turn..and *NONE* of the measures ever see the light of day! Miraculous!

The G J are showing this state of affairs up.

Le Monde

Posted by: Noirette | Dec 16, 2018 4:06:35 PM | 8

Noirette

Just more propaganda. Democracy is working!

Yeah, who is it working for? The "radical center" that serves corporate and military interests.

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Dec 16, 2018 4:36:56 PM | 9

"Just putting out here how Pamela Anderson's Twitter feed has become one of the most essential intellectual left microblogs out there. In recent weeks, she's put out stuff on the Green New Deal, Adam Curtis's interview with the Economist, endorsements of Mèlenchon and Sanders, Yemen, Srecko Horvat, MSF Aquarius, and Lexit."
Posted by: Blooming Barricade | Dec 16, 2018 2:49:18 PM | 5

No doubt lots of people keep abreast of Pamela Anderson's Twitter feed and not all of them are boobs, but essential? intellectual? left? The sad truth is that by current standards it may indeed be all those things. Sad, not because of PA's bimbo-ish image, which for all I know is completely belied by a towering intellect, but because what the "intellectual left" apparently stands for these days is the socialism of Sanders or Mèlenchon, i.e., capitalism. (See "France's “yellow vest” protests expose Jean-Luc Mélenchon's pro-capitalist populism" https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2018/12/06/mele-d06.html . Referring to "pseudo-left forces like Mélenchon" the article closes with: "These defenders of the capitalist state against the upsurge of social anger in the masses stand, not only figuratively but also literally on the other side of the barricades.")

Posted by: drj | Dec 16, 2018 5:23:25 PM | 10

Re Yellow Vests:

This is a perfect visual example of how the media simply "scrub" out information to make it appear the opposite to be true when it is not

https://twitter.com/FrDesouche/status/1074282295891255296

https://www.rt.com/news/446613-france3-macron-yellow-vests/

Posted by: jsb | Dec 16, 2018 5:26:15 PM | 11

"The G J are showing this state of affairs up."Noirette @ 8

The great achievement of the GJ is to demonstrate that what the politicians, of all stripes want, is office. None of them want power. They are content to let power rest where it is. If they were not, if they really wanted power, they sense that their careers, and probably their lives, would soon come to an end.

Tspiras, in Greece, is a good example. Until he got into office he insisted that the state's power could be used to benefit the masses. He soon discovered that he was wrong and that while he had got office he was as far from power-further in fact- than he had been in the days when his party had been in opposition.
What the 'left'dare not tell its supporters is that elections are of very little importance: by winning them all that Socialists achieve is to deny ruling class parties a mandate for reactionary measures. Election victories on the left may prevent or mitigate attacks on the people but they can do very little more: the only reforms that they can produce are reforms already due, reforms backed by powerful parties within the Establishment.
It is certainly true, for example, that after WWII in western Europe and the UK, in particular, long overdue changes were introduced, changes which greatly benefited the masses. Reforms that were not only supported by but midwifed by socialists.
But they were almost all based on old proposals long backed by civil servants and conservative elements of the Deep State.
As everyone knows national insurance and old age pension schemes can be traced back to Bismark and Lloyd George. In the same way the British NHS and the welfare state in general pre-dated the Labour government and were begun in the wartime government headed by Churchill.
We are at the end of forty years of neo-liberal policies, all over the world, policies which have caused more deaths-and will continue to do so for decades to come- than any of the wars begun by the neo-liberals, most of them to distract opponents and victims of their criminality.
What was the origin of this nightmare period, in which working people have been pushed deeper and deeper into poverty and insecurity?
In my view it began with the failure of the left, in Europe particularly, to turn the temporary advances of the Trade Unions and the Welfare State into the basis for taking power. It was afraid to turn down the accommodation offered by the powers that be: 'You will never have to work again. We will bury you in honours, prestige and, wealth. But recognise that you have gone as far as we will allow. No tinkering with the foundations of the system."
It ran out of ideas, because what came next involved challenging the system. Or rather it shied away from facing the reality that ideas are not enough. It was afraid to move from reform to revolution, in the sense of telling its clientele, the popular electorate, the truth: no electoral victory would do what was necessary. Casting a vote has very little effect unless behind each vote cast is a pledge by the voter to insist, in person and in the street and workplace, if necessary, on the imposition of the programme desired.
In contemporary terms that means that, in the UK, where, not coincidentally, the warmongers and the peace campaigners, the neo-liberals and those campaigning for nationalisation of the economy, both are to the fore in the political debate, the left has to go beyond a manifesto and honestly tell its supporters that an election victory would signal only the beginning. The dominant Establishment, which has roots far wider than the UK and can exist for long periods without support from it, is ruthless. To resist it a government seriously bent on defying the US and Israel will have to purge the BBC, replace the dominant media with one ready to tell the truth and afraid to misinform and disinform.

The GJ have one enormous advantage: the French language which insulates most working people from the dominant, English language, propaganda.

Posted by: bevin | Dec 16, 2018 5:59:40 PM | 12

pops staples song i like..

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sb_S9BVShN8

Posted by: james | Dec 16, 2018 7:19:23 PM | 13

@ Noirette 8
Imho, the ‘W - fake democracy’ narrative that different pol. parties represent different groups of ppl / sections of society / contrary pol opinions / visions of the future, etc. has to be given up.

Analogies are never perfect and often questionable, but let's try this one. Fake "democracy" whereby you get to vote for one of two people for an office and that's it, no more, while the person you voted for works for others, is sort of like if you bought a car and then weren't allowed to operate it. Someone else used the car while you made the payments (IOW taxes).

Posted by: Don Bacon | Dec 16, 2018 7:27:59 PM | 14

I've been looking through the II/IfS leaks and wondered what you knowledgeable folks thought about Liz Wahl (formerly RT America) seemingly being paid as she is listed in an invoice for an article "Inside RT".

Just an observervation which could be simply my looking for links where none exist.

Posted by: Casual Observer | Dec 16, 2018 7:49:03 PM | 15

Anya @4 asked;""Why Does Senator Charles Schumer Support a Border Wall for Israel, but Not the United States?"

Uh, because He's a "bought and paid for" hack, for all things Israel, and so is Peolsi.

I fully expect both of them, to oppose ANYTHING progressive, proposed in the House coming in 2019...

Posted by: ben | Dec 16, 2018 9:01:49 PM | 16

Dear B,

No post of yours is ever too long and MoA is your blog anyway so feel free to post articles that are as long as they need to be, especially if you find (as you inevitably will) that the Integrity Initiative has its fingers in many pies and GCHQ / MI5 / MI6's networks overlap with and form a tight hermetic matrix with so many others across different parts of the world.

Thanks very much for your efforts this year!

Posted by: Jen | Dec 16, 2018 9:17:08 PM | 17

The day Canucks feted certified war criminal GWB and jailed the activist who tried citizen arrest on their honored guest.

http://www.voltairenet.org/article165482.html

Posted by: denk | Dec 16, 2018 9:45:55 PM | 18

so Tony Bliar is sneaking into Brussels trying to undermine his own country. They used to shoot people for that.

Posted by: Mischi | Dec 16, 2018 10:47:17 PM | 20

there were quite a few protests in various cities in Canada against the UN migration pact, but the newspapers in my city didn't report it at all. The only paper that did is the right wing national paper The National Post. Radio silence from everyone else.

Posted by: Mischi | Dec 16, 2018 10:48:57 PM | 21

Local-Auzzie-msm colorful war-on-huawei report w names c.o naked capitalism links:

https://www.smh.com.au/business/companies/how-the-five-eyes-cooked-up-the-campaign-to-kill-huawei-20181213-p50m24.html

Another candidate for attendance checking in Panama Papers, perhaps?

Thanks be to b !

Posted by: slit | Dec 16, 2018 11:31:29 PM | 22

You kicked all kinds of ass this week. Thanks!

Posted by: Soft Asylum | Dec 17, 2018 1:00:41 AM | 23

Thanks b for all your work. Connecting the seemingly unrelated issues. For some time now I have felt that many of these issues were connected through an anglo five eyes permanent state. slit's link @21 is another piece of the puzzle.

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | Dec 17, 2018 1:01:14 AM | 24

TJ | Dec 17, 2018 5:15:54 AM | 24

So, what? b doesn't give you enough to discuss?
And you post 4 links from another site?
With no comment?
Definitely troll material...
Go away...

Posted by: V | Dec 17, 2018 6:48:29 AM | 26

About the propaganda warfare front:

Gov't seeks to build K-pop arena in northeastern Seoul

South Korea said Monday that it will push to build a K-pop arena in Seoul as part of a broader effort to attract more foreign tourists and create jobs in the cultural sector.

The Ministry of Economy and Finance said the project worth about 500 billion won ($442 million) in Changdong, northeastern Seoul, could be financed by private companies, though it did not provide any details.

See, kids? The government being behind some kind of propaganda machine is only an issue when it is China that is doing it. When it is a capitalist country, it is fruit of "free enterprise", artistic "genius" and the "free markets"(tm).

After all, it is not like K-pop is an invention of the South Korean government, whose aim is to project soft power. It even has its own department within the Ministry of Culture!

Posted by: vk | Dec 17, 2018 6:56:50 AM | 27

Posted by: Don Bacon | Dec 16, 2018 7:27:59 PM | 13

If democracy would be just voting you could be correct. If you do not organize your influence is nil - erased by next door's crazy person who votes because he/she likes/dislikes the look of a candidate.

Democracy means a lot more than just that. For example Trump not being able to achieve much. Or Macron having to retract his policies.


Posted by: somebody | Dec 17, 2018 8:31:23 AM | 28

Bill Mitchell has a good article up on the 'green new deal', a 'job guarantee' and a' just transition'.

Green New Deal

He points out that ""Everywhere I read it seems, the ‘Green New Deal’ appears."" but doesn't mention the name Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.

For what it's worth MMT and a Job Guarantee are designed to work within a capitalist system framework. I'm not sure if this is where Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is coming from.

-----------

financial matters says:
Monday, December 17, 2018 at 23:16
Newly elected congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is one reason the green new deal is becoming more popular. She is proving to be very popular.

I’m not sure if she’s specifically a Job Guarantee supporter but she seems to like the ideas of Mariana Mazzucato and Stephanie Kelton.

Her thinking may be more along socialist rather than capitalist ideas which may put the job guarantee in a different perspective.

Posted by: financial matters | Dec 17, 2018 8:34:56 AM | 29

@25 V

This is an open thread, I did not comment on the links, it is all fairly self explanatory to those that read MoA. If you insist on a comment from me here goes. We live in interesting times.

Posted by: TJ | Dec 17, 2018 8:39:36 AM | 30

Sorry, correct link Green New Deal (http://bilbo.economicoutlook.net/blog/?p=41150)

Posted by: financial matters | Dec 17, 2018 8:43:23 AM | 31

The Strasbourg shooter, labelled "islamic terrorist" was apprehended and shot. Isn't it strangely coincidental, that all such perpetrators have been killed when cornered, whether they have their hands up in surrender or not? Is it coincidence that they all , including this latest, conveniently carry an ID on their person? And how come, after a few days, with all the security apparatus of France, and many other intelligence services, in the hunt for this individual, he was "discovered" in his home??!! Surely the first place to watch and search in any manhunt? And the timing.....how convenient for an embattled President.

Posted by: SPYRIDON POLITIS | Dec 17, 2018 9:11:22 AM | 32

I wish to pose the following question in order to generate some debate, and hear some alternative views. Is migration, from one's country to another's, an inalienable human right?

Posted by: SPYRIDON POLITIS | Dec 17, 2018 9:17:47 AM | 33

Posted by: SPYRIDON POLITIS | Dec 17, 2018 9:11:22 AM | 31

You cannot expect police to risk their life when dealing with an armed person who has nothing left to lose.

Macron - or his party - do not have the institutional power to instigate a conspiracy like this. No one would risk it as the French tend to bring their politicians to trial after they lost power - see Sarkozy though Sarkozy seems to be kind of back.

Posted by: somebody | Dec 17, 2018 9:23:01 AM | 34

@20 Migration is something of a taboo subject. People protesting against the UN migration pact in Belgium and elsewhere are easily dismissed as rightwing thugs. When it is all explained to them they will see the error of their ways.

Posted by: dh | Dec 17, 2018 9:26:07 AM | 35

Integrity Initiative says it will "challenge the credibility" of left wing parties Die Linke, France Insoumise, KKE, Podemos, etc and will "challenge their self-definition" by pointing out support for "aggressors." It calls for the investigation of finances of left as well as "mapping of personnel and organisational connections."

Official NATO-funded dismantling campaign against anticapitalist parties and organisations! NATO is the arm of the multinationals and is seeking to swiftly destroy any challenge to corporate profits and military hegemony! NO TO NATO must be on the platform of social democrats, socialists, anarchists, and communists!

https://web.archive.org/web/20181217141941/https://www.integrityinitiative.net/articles/russia-and-european-far-left">https://www.integrityinitiative.net/articles/russia-and-european-far-left">https://web.archive.org/web/20181217141941/https://www.integrityinitiative.net/articles/russia-and-european-far-left

Posted by: Blooming Barricade | Dec 17, 2018 9:29:49 AM | 36

I hate this.

I've tried making a new reddit account since you all don't want me here either.

I tried being friendly on reddit this time and not overly hostile towards propaganda - avoiding the "muh Russia threads" and so forth to get a few upvotes on my account. But I got muted again after they put out that latest report and I commented if they weren't getting tired of that narrative after 2 years.

Muted again. It was almost instantaneous too - you get a message about your e-mail status or some shit from reddit when it happens. I've been muted on so many accounts I can't even begin to count them.

It's horrifying. The whole fucking world has been fucking brainwashed.

Posted by: tom | Dec 17, 2018 10:28:41 AM | 37

@ SPYRIDON POLITIS | Dec 17, 2018 9:17:47 AM

Is migration, from one's country to another's, an inalienable human right?

Yes, it is! But that applies only to humans, and for Christian colonialists only humans are themselves. So, they can go anywhere and continue doing what ever they have been doing for half a millennium with a full impunity. They even have a special word to distinguish themselves, expats, from the rest of us dirty immigrants.

Posted by: ex-SA | Dec 17, 2018 11:10:06 AM | 38

In two words: the YJ are not weakening but after the Strasburg attack the demos were smaller in Paris (but not so smaller in the province).
I am too bitter to write about the French journalists explaining now all day long that the YJ believe in a lot of fake news they find on the internet, and that FB is not representative etc. Some people do tell them 'oh really but during the Arab Spring we thought FB would bring democracy all over the world'. But they never go further than that.

Posted by: Mina | Dec 17, 2018 12:07:30 PM | 39

bevin wrote: In my view it began with the failure of the left, in Europe particularly, to turn the temporary advances of the Trade Unions and the Welfare State into the basis for taking power. It was afraid to turn down the accommodation offered by the powers that be: 'You will never have to work again. We will bury you in honours, prestige and, wealth. But recognise that you have gone as far as we will allow. No tinkering with the foundations of the system.”

Oh I agree, but would at the same time relate a rise of the ‘left’ in the sense of defense of the worker (e.g. Unions) and services to all, incl. laborers (e.g. NHS type health care, new salubrious housing) because the Age of Prosperity took hold.

Typically in France, les trentes glorieuses post WW2. The made-possible exploitation of energy and the tech/other devp. it allowed could only be accomplished, run with, skilled to well-qualified plus some top-educated, ppl.

It is one thing to till by hand, quite another to possess two tractors, use pesticides, implement some processing of the product, various analyses, transport, cooperate with neighbors / other, which implies literacy and social, tech, acumen, + more.. (the ex I am thinking of is the F perfume industry in the South ..)

The support ‘service’ staff needed - some child care, health care, and most important, education, teachers with all they need, transport / infrastructure again, are then taken on by the community (“State”) for the good of all (“redistribution”)

Those days are past.

Posted by: Noirette | Dec 17, 2018 1:46:23 PM | 40

(I've been lurking on and off here for quite a while, but now it's time to come out of 'Lurk-istan' and into the limelight of MoA's open thread. The level of intelligence and discourse on this site is--on the whole--excellent, which is why I've decided to post the below. Sincere, thoughtful replies requested.)

=========================
~ Could this new grassroots-democracy system actually work? ~

Let’s face it. It’s ‘Borg-world, here we come’ (see DARPA is a major 'transhumanism' hub) unless we can somehow overcome the major threats we face. And they are major: large, powerful systems and organizations that basically recruit talented psychopaths to run large corporations, financial institutions, rogue government agencies, stolen elections, etc. All of this is resulting in regional and global eco-catastrophes, omni-surveillance 24/7, etc., etc.

Yet solving these is going to ultimately depend on a critical mass of ‘we the people’ working together with some form of genuinely healthy democracy that effectively connects to a healthy electoral system.

Yep, a daunting task, to say the least. But if we start working now, work smart, and begin to reverse the disastrous course we’re now on by whatever means necessary (but only using those means while truly operating in a deeply democratic grassroots manner), we can still help catalyze a re-blossoming of humanity, one that’s harmonious with both itself and Nature.

Your skepticism is understandable, but hear me out.

A new grassroots-democracy system exists that enables sovereign-citizen-based, deeply democratic self government—from the voting-precinct level on up—genuinely of, by, and for we the people. We can pool our views to build united views and actions, enabling us—not only in spite of but because of our diversity—to actually work together to determine our own destiny, versus allowing that to be determined by a plutocratic few who act in their own selfish interests.

This system is called the “Neighborhood Councils-Precinct Assembly” (NC-PA), and its detailed pdf ‘how-to’ Manual is at http://preview.tinyurl.com/ncpa-4 . (The main NC-PA website is located at: http://ncpaaction.wordpress.com . A pdf overview and excerpts from the Manual are located at: http://preview.tinyurl.com/ncpa-excerpts .)

Yes, NC-PA’s website is spare and anonymous (www.ncpaaction.wordpress.com) —its purpose is only to introduce and disperse the Manual.

By individually and collectively using techniques of deep democracy and group processes—old and new—at the level of today’s neighborhoods and voting precincts, the NC-PA system finally actualizes Thomas Jefferson’s long-held dream for the establishment of local, authentically democratic, self-government.

[The Manual quote above is referring to Jefferson’s 'ward-republics' ideas, which he began promoting around 1816.]

NC-PA emphasizes establishing not only mutual respect but also mutual trust that is based on mutual perceived trustworthiness. So many other groups try to establish mutual trust by simply working to make their members believe that everyone present is inherently trustworthy, when this is too often not the case. That forced perspective has resulted in too many grassroots democracy movements having been hijacked, diverted, twisted beyond recognition, and weaponized by those beholden to shadowy elements of society that have hidden agendas that are decidedly unhealthy for the rest of us.

Basic NC-PA components include:

* Establishing multiple, informally organized, neighborhood-based ‘neighborhood councils’ (NCs)—within a single voting precinct—that are centered on mutual respect and trust-based-on-mutually-perceived trustworthiness. These qualities allow more honest airing and discussion of members’ concerns (NC’s share some similarities with affinity groups);

* Within that same voting precinct, establishing a single, more formally organized, voting-precinct-based ‘precinct assembly’ (PA), at which NC delegates deliberate and decide on the issues brought to it by the NC’s in an atmosphere of mutual respect to the greatest degree possible and using various empowering group-process techniques (including consensus, dynamic facilitation, and super-majority rule, depending on the issue at hand);

* All of the NC members within that same precinct being encouraged to also attend the PA to give immediate feedback to their delegates on the issues being discussed;

* At every meeting level larger than the NC, using delegates (who are explicitly bound to follow their home group’s instructions) and not representatives (who can basically do whatever they want)—the delegate/members ratio is 1 to 5;

* Promoting absolute election integrity by all means necessary (‘absolute election integrity’ is practical only via hand-counted, publicly observed, secure-chain-of-custody, paper ballots—an optional machine recount of ballots for verification purposes can be added), as such election integrity is ultimately the source of any long-term NC-PA political power.

* PA’s teaming up with the PA’s of the voting precincts within an election district (like a state representative’s) to directly impact policy making and elections.

* Promoting the rapid replication of NC’s and PA’s to establish ‘network governance’ within larger and larger geographical areas, each using the same basic delegate format in the assemblies that they form, as well as continual reflection to and from the smaller geographical levels below them.

* At all levels, using basic ‘security-culture’ principles as much as possible to minimize outside interference and disruption. NC-PA confronts some of our more challenging realities: the ‘total surveillance society,’ agents provocateurs, infiltrators, disruptors, etc. Too many other grassroots-democracy movements seem to try to ignore these issues, as if pretending they’re not there will make their unsavory truths simply cease to exist. Security culture methods can include eliminating/ minimizing the use of all hackable communications (e.g., online social media, phones, anything connected to the Internet of Things (IoT)) and instead using alternative communication methods (distributing hard-copy printed materials (remember those?)), door-to-door word of mouth, walkie-talkies, silent written-communication-only meetings, modified sign language… the list can be long).

Admittedly, the Manual’s section on the Precinct Assembly is still too vague about detailed, on-the-ground operations. That will be improved by future readers-turned-practitioners who, writing from personal experience, will improve on the original Manual, which actually encourages such improvement as long as its ‘9 Pillars of NC-PA’ concepts (see http://preview.tinyurl.com/ncpa-excerpts ) are kept fundamentally intact.

Regardless, much of what’s in the Manual is reality-based enough—all elements are already ‘off the shelf’ and have been successfully used for many years. This is especially true of the voting precincts upon which NC-PA is based, and it is thus designed to plug directly into our electoral infrastructure. Bringing about genuine election integrity is key (and a powerful tactic is detailed in the Manual (pp 65–66) for the public to retake their elections back from voting machine companies, their programmers, and their manipulators)—NC-PA could have tremendous impact in helping society govern and evolve itself.

Anyway, we're going to need something that works, and soon.

But that’s just my (admittedly biased) take on it. Please check NC-PA out using the links provided above, and—if you feel moved to do so—report back with your own thoughts about this NC-PA system.

Posted by: Catalyst | Dec 17, 2018 2:25:57 PM | 41

Catalyst @41--

The NC-PA system seems very similar to the Green Party's County-based organizing idea, which had the defect of not being based on voting precincts, although not all precincts share ballots for every electable position. Furthermore, state districts differ from federal districts. My experience within the Green Party is its organizational basis made for dysfunctional candidate support.

Another problem is the extreme imbalance within Federalism thanks to too much weight being given the national government over state & local, when in theory systemic balance is required for the system to function properly. The primary reason for that is defects within the 1787 Constitution, mostly related to the Commerce Clause.

Yet another huge problem rests in the wording of Corporate Charters where the rights and wellbeing of Shareholders are paramount over those of the public and environment which can be solved via the rewording of those charters to switch their directional emphasis. Then is relation to that is the question of finance and monetary system control.

Those are just some initial and longstanding thoughts. Another question that arises here occasionally over the years relates to the USA's basic system of organization into 50 states, which is provably dysfunctional.

Posted by: karlof1 | Dec 17, 2018 3:10:01 PM | 42

Important Recent Afghan Developments. How long until the Outlaw US Empire moves to deter this advance as it's strategic policy cannot allow it to occur.

Posted by: karlof1 | Dec 17, 2018 4:12:42 PM | 43

karlof1 @ 43

Yes, from the article

""In strategic terms, CPEC becomes an underpinning of Afghanistan’s stability. This fits in with the Chinese dictum that an enduring solution to terrorism and separatism lies in economic development.""

The antithesis of US aspirations. But this from the article is probably also true

""the US is, finally, jettisoning the notion that there could be a military solution to the Afghan problem""

Posted by: financial matters | Dec 17, 2018 4:59:48 PM | 44

Africa sort of flies under the radar. US has had 30 military operations going on over the last 3 years directed by SOAFRICA
Over the weekend 60 “terrorists “ werevkilled in bombing raids in Somalia. Tunisia. Mali. Niger, Nigeria, Cameroon, Somalia , Chad, etc . In 2017 there were 10 missions/excercises a day in 33 African countries.

https://news.vice.com/en_us/article/a3my38/exclusive-the-us-has-more-military-operations-in-africa-than-the-middle-east

BRICS countries have their eye on Africa too for extraction of resources. East and West may very well face off in Africa before they do in Iran , Ukraine, Arctic or the islands in the South China Sea

Posted by: Pft | Dec 17, 2018 5:34:13 PM | 45

financial matters @44--

Unfortunately, the only tools to arrive at solutions in Bolton and Pompeo's tool boxes are military solutions. Note how both are working as hard as possible to deter a Korean Peace while actively goading on Japan's Abe to rapidly remilitarize despite its political unpopularity. Bolton and Pompeo are at a distinct disadvantage on Korea but have the upper hand in Afghanistan. And since the #1 policy goal of the Outlaw US Empire is based upon violence, I don't see a bright future for Afghanistan as all NATO forces will need to be physically removed for any development to proceed smoothly.

Posted by: karlof1 | Dec 17, 2018 6:19:52 PM | 46

TJ | Dec 17, 2018 8:39:36 AM | 30

Actually, it's not an open thread; go back and look for yourself.

Posted by: V | Dec 17, 2018 9:04:44 PM | 47

@47 v.... read b at the very end of this post... cheers james

Posted by: james | Dec 17, 2018 11:01:26 PM | 48

Steele testimony highlights Hillary's failure to campaign aggressively

I have previously described how the 2016 US Presidential election was LIKELY (I have no definitive proof or 'smoking gun') to have been a complete set-up that:

1) put a nationalist into the US Presidency just when geopolitical imperatives demanded it;

2) entrapped people hated by the security agencies (Assange, Flynn); and

3) provided an excuse for faux populist Trump to betray his election promises via supposed pressure related to his loyalty to America (Obama, another faux populist, faced similar bogus questions from the Trump-led Birther Movement).

Most people find the above "conspiracy theory" to be fantastical - until they consider the logical reasoning on which it is based, which can be found in my recent comments in one thread (here. here, and here), and a second thread (here, and here)

As often happens with these things, we've seen indications of a cover-up as well:

> FBI Director Comey gave Hillary a 'pass' on emails; and Trump decided not to prosecute her and strangely gave immunity to her closest aids;

> There are now reports that Mueller/FBI have deleted text messages (Strzok) and altered documents (related to Flynn);

> Skripal has been secreted away;
Since we already know that ex-MI6 officer Steele was involved, why does Skripal need to disappear? Will he be allowed to appear before a closed session of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence?

> Kelly's rebuke to Graham;
What else explains Graham's nervousness and Kelly's silent rebuke?

Now we have new data: from Washington Times (ht ZeroHedge):

In an answer to interrogatories, Mr. Steele wrote: “Fusion’s immediate client was law firm Perkins Coie. It engaged Fusion to obtain information necessary for Perkins Coie LLP to provide legal advice on the potential impact of Russian involvement on the legal validity of the outcome of the 2016 US Presidential election.

“Based on that advice, parties such as the Democratic National Committee and HFACC Inc. (also known as ‘Hillary for America’) could consider steps they would be legally entitled to take to challenge the validity of the outcome of that election.”


We are asked to believe that the Steele dossier WASN'T "opposition research" but an insurance policy. But the Steele dossier consists of factual inaccuracies and innuendo. The ONLY thing it's good for is blowing smoke. And THAT's how it was used: to raise suspicions that start investigations. It would be as useless for contesting an election as it has been for incriminating anyone.

And Trump's Russian connections were well know to the FBI. An investigation of Trump's Russian ties by Steele would be unlikely to produce something that the FBI didn't already know because the FBI had a man inside the Trump organization for over a decade.

Steele's testimony highlights Hillary's failure to campaign aggressively.

If Hillary and the DNC (plus Republican "Never Trump"-ers!) were so concerned about a Trump win that they contemplated contesting the election, then why did Hillary not campaign in three crucial states? Why did she alienate Sanders progressives? Why did she take the black vote for granted? Why did she use language like "deplorables" when talking about white conservatives?

If a Trump win was so unacceptable to everyone that matters that it was necessary to contemplate contesting the election, then why did Hillary fail to do everything possible to achieve that goal?!

Lastly, why didn't the DNC hire an AMERICAN firm to do this research? If they had, there would likely be no British libel lawsuit to defend against! They could have used the initial Steele dossier (commissioned by anti-Trump Republicans, we are told) as a starting point. They had virtually unlimited funding available to them as proven by Michael Bloomberg's announcing his intention, in Feb. 2016, to start his own campaign to ensure that neither Sanders or Trump would be elected!

And along those lines, why did Trump use British firm Cambridge Analytica for Facebook targeting instead of a US firm? We now know that Cambridge Analytica was not unique: Facebook provided MANY firms with similar access.

AFAICT, the only hard and fast reason to use British firms for these purposes is if CIA was involved and farmed out US political work to MI6.

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Dec 17, 2018 11:03:53 PM | 49

Even SNL recognizes that Hillary blew it. The December 15th "Cold Open" contains the line:

... all she had to do to win was visit Wisconsin ONCE.

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Dec 17, 2018 11:32:53 PM | 50

I hope Kim recognizes that Trump is playing him in that he's pretending good cop to Pompeo's bad cop.

https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.bbc.com/news/amp/world-asia-46585573

Posted by: Circe | Dec 18, 2018 12:04:50 AM | 51

james | Dec 17, 2018 11:01:26 PM | 48

Yup! My bad. :-(

Posted by: V | Dec 18, 2018 12:42:11 AM | 52

To complement b's excellent written work, I'd like to point to some of the other really rare species of good,fact based,informative and even great to watch documentaries.

Just released for free viewing by truthstreammedia : The Minds of Men | Official Documentary

From MKUltra Mind Control to modern Social engineering, packed with information. Took me 2 sessions to get through the almost 4 hour work but it was more then worth the time and I'm sure yours too.

Second one is the new Corbettreport series on WWI called: The WWI Conspiracy. He released some follow up interviews and analysis which is also time well spend.

Both works above are real rare gems regarding their topics and everyone with half an interest for learning about the mechanisms and technics of how our society is manipulated and massaged even today by the 'powers that shouldn't be' will benefit spending at least some time with them. Aside from its content they are all very well made pieces of multimedia handcraft, I would both give an alternative 'Oscar' , if there would be one.


Posted by: youss | Dec 18, 2018 6:45:10 AM | 53

A lot of basic issues are bipartisan like support for Medicare for All. Is AOC working for the deplorables?


Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez
‏@Ocasio2018
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Retweeted Brian L Kahn

Our first policy proposal - a #GreenNewDeal to mobilize nat’l jobs + infrastructure investment to address environment, fix our communities, & save the planet, has support from a majority of **conservative Republican voters.**

Maybe THAT’S why GOP media is so scared of us. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez added,

Brian L Kahn
@blkahn

The Green New Deal championed by @Ocasio2018 has the support of a majority of voters by a ratio of 4.5:1, including a majority of conservative Republicans https://earther.gizmodo.com/new-poll-shows-basically-everyone-likes-alexandria-ocas-1831158171

Posted by: financial matters | Dec 18, 2018 8:25:20 AM | 54

The farce is complete: NY Times blames Russia for "Voter Suppression" that derailed Hillary's sure win of the Presidency. Caitlin Johnstone writes about it here: Mass Media’s Russia Hysteria Is Openly Acknowledging The Power Of Propaganda.

But her analysis falls short. This outlandish claim is not just about scare-mongering but something more sinister: providing an excuse for Hillary's (likely) throwing of the election to Trump. Once THAT is acknowledged, the election hairball and "Russia meddling" hysteria quickly unravels to reveal CIA-MI6 scheming behind the SELECTION of Trump.

Frankly, the only thing that will break thru the stupor created by the MSM echo-chamber of Russia fear-mongering is the widespread realization that the 2016 "election" was fixed: Sanders 'sheepdogged' for Hillary and Hillary threw the election to Trump.

Welcome to the rabbithole.

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Dec 18, 2018 12:55:49 PM | 55

Jackrabbit@55

I agree. Been arguing the same point myself

Another reason for the false meme was to give Trump an excuse for not honoring promises (Deep State sabotage-oh boy I have a bridge to sell) and an excuse to crack down on propaganda (not the state propaganda but the truth which is now known as fake news)

I have to say the elites getting smarter thanks to super computers and Big Data analysis made possible by social media and 24/7 surveillance of communications.

They are pretty much unstoppable. Next phase is depopulation using vaccines, 5G, engineered pathogens and tried and true methods like poverty, famine, war. Yikes.

Posted by: Pft | Dec 18, 2018 8:32:18 PM | 56

Don't Mess With Texas, er, I mean (((Tex-Aviv)))

commenting on an article from The Intercept: A Texas Elementary School Speech Pathologist Refused to Sign a Pro-Israel Oath, Now Mandatory in Many States — so She Lost Her Job


Welcome to Texas, land of cowboys and goys, cattle auctions and obedient shkotzim, oil drilling and Israel shilling and so on.

As the Lone Star State rapidly transforms itself into another province of may-hee-co, at least everyone has their priorities straight, namely total and complete subservience to the poisonous mushroom and its (((criminal bandit state)))

You better say you love the globalist nation-wrecker like your future depends on it, because when it comes to employment, it does.

A children’s speech pathologist who has worked for the last nine years with developmentally disabled, autistic, and speech-impaired elementary school students in Austin, Texas, has been told that she can no longer work with the public school district, after she refused to sign an oath vowing that she “does not” and “will not” engage in a boycott of Israel or “otherwise tak[e] any action that is intended to inflict economic harm” on that foreign nation.

Translation: The absolute state of our dying nation in 2018. Open borders, foreign invasion, cities transformed into burning African tribal war zones...none of that matters. What does matter is bowing down to the (((synagogue))) of satan so you can have the crumbs that fall off the semitic plate to you, the dogs.

The child language specialist, Bahia Amawi, is a U.S. citizen who received a master’s degree in speech pathology in 1999 and, since then, has specialized in evaluations for young children with language difficulties.

Naturally, not a single White person had any problem with swearing allegiance to a hostile foreign power. It's up to some muslim immigrant to display more courage in the face of evil than the entire gelded population of may-hee-co norr-tay.

Amawi was born in Austria and has lived in the U.S.

Come on in, "Austrians!" Just cool it with the "anti-semitism," okay?

She was prepared to sign her contract renewal until she noticed one new, and extremely significant, addition: a certification she was required to sign pledging that she “does not currently boycott Israel,” that she “will not boycott Israel during the term of the contract,” and that she shall refrain from any action “that is intended to penalize, inflict economic harm on, or limit commercial relations with Israel, or with a person or entity doing business in Israeli or in an Israel-controlled territory.”

This is real. It's not some tasteless joke. It actually happened. A muslim immigrant come into conflict in a nation that lost its mind, soul and testicles.

I solemnly swear to affix my lips to kosher tuckus, under the threat of losing my livelihood. And I'm proud to be a murrkann, where at least I know I'm free...

The language of the affirmation Amawi was told she must sign reads like Orwellian — or McCarthyite — self-parody, the classic political loyalty oath that every American should instinctively shudder upon reading.

Every right-thinking American would immediately reject this marxist atrocity. Which is why they all quietly signed off on it until Amahi raised a stink, perhaps wrongly thinking there is any victim identity on par with g*d's chosen.

Whatever one’s own views are, boycotting Israel to stop its occupation is a global political movement modeled on the 1980s boycott aimed at South Africa that helped end that country’s system of racial apartheid. 

And now South Africa is doing great! Ahem. Cough.

That’s one extraordinary aspect of this story: The sole political affirmation Texans like Amawi are required to sign in order to work with the school district’s children is one designed to protect not the United States or the children of Texas, but the economic interests of Israel. 

Good Texans with long ancestral ties to the land like Amawi and *series of clicking noises* are being forced to side against the America they sincerely love!

As Amawi put it to The Intercept: “It’s baffling that they can throw this down our throats and decide to protect another country’s economy versus protecting our constitutional rights.”

Muh constitution, declares the immigrant. Bow down to the shekel almighty! Whoever wins, we lose.

https://theintercept.com/2018/12/17/israel-texas-anti-bds-law/

Posted by: monika | Dec 19, 2018 4:31:34 PM | 57

A look back: Thinking of FP Realist Steven Cohen in 2011

Obama’s Russia ‘Reset’: Another Lost Opportunity?"
Obama’s celebrated “reset” of US-Russia relations is limited and unstable. A fundamental transformation requires bold leadership and a full rethinking of Washington’s triumphalist attitudes.

... when President Obama took office in January 2009, relations between Washington and Moscow were so bad that some close observers, myself included, characterized them as a new cold war. Almost all cooperation, even decades-long agreements regulating nuclear weapons, had been displaced by increasingly acrimonious conflicts. Indeed, the relationship had led to a military confrontation potentially as dangerous as the 1962 Cuban missile crisis. The Georgian-Russian War of August 2008 was also a proxy American-Russian war, the Georgian forces having been supplied and trained by Washington.

What happened to the “strategic partnership and friendship” between post-Soviet Moscow and Washington promised by leaders on both sides after 1991? For more than a decade, the American political and media establishments have maintained that such a relationship was achieved by President Bill Clinton and Russian President Boris Yeltsin in the 1990s but destroyed by the “antidemocratic and neo-imperialist agenda” of Vladimir Putin, who succeeded Yeltsin in 2000.

In reality, the historic opportunity for a post–cold war partnership was lost in Washington, not Moscow, when the Clinton administration, in the early 1990s, adopted an approach based on the false premise that Russia, having “lost” the cold war, could be treated as a defeated nation. (The cold war actually ended through negotiations sometime between 1988 and 1990, well before the end of Soviet Russia in December 1991, as all the leading participants—Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev, President Ronald Reagan and President George H.W. Bush—agreed.)

The result was the Clinton administration’s triumphalist, winner-take-all approach, including an intrusive crusade to dictate Russia’s internal political and economic development; broken strategic promises, most importantly Bush’s assurance to Gorbachev in 1990 that NATO would not expand eastward beyond a reunited Germany; and double-standard policies impinging on Russia (along with sermons) that presumed Moscow no longer had any legitimate security concerns abroad apart from those of the United States, even in its own neighborhood. The backlash came with Putin, but it would have come with any Kremlin leader more self-confident, more sober and less reliant on Washington than was Yeltsin.

Nor did Washington’s triumphalism end with Clinton or Yeltsin. Following the events of September 11, 2001, to take the most ramifying example, Putin’s Kremlin gave the George W. Bush administration more assistance in its anti-Taliban war in Afghanistan, including in intelligence and combat, than did any NATO ally. In return, Putin expected the long-denied US-Russian partnership. Instead, the Bush White House soon expanded NATO all the way to Russia’s borders and withdrew unilaterally from the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty, which Moscow regarded as the bedrock of its nuclear security. Those “deceptions” have not been forgotten in Moscow.

. . .

When President Obama made “resetting” relations with Moscow a foreign-policy priority, he seemed to understand that a chance for a necessary partnership with post-Soviet Russia had been lost and might still be retrieved. The meaning of “reset” was, of course, what used to be called détente. And since détente had always meant replacing cold war conflicts with cooperation, the president’s initiative also suggested an understanding that he had inherited something akin to a new cold war.

. . .

The political failings of the reset may be transitory, but the fundamental fallacies of Obama’s Russia policy derive from the winner-take-all triumphalism of the 1990s. One is the enduring conceit of “selective cooperation,” or seeking Moscow’s support for America’s vital interests while disregarding Russia’s. Even though this approach had been pursued repeatedly since the 1990s, by Presidents Clinton and Bush, resulting only in failure and mounting Russian resentments, the Obama White House sought one-way concessions as the basis of the reset. As the National Security Council adviser on Russia, and reportedly the next US Ambassador to Moscow, Michael McFaul explained, “We’re going to see if there are ways we can have Russia cooperate on those things that we define as our national interests, but we don’t want to trade with them.”

. . .

The twenty-year-long notion that Moscow will make unreciprocated concessions for the sake of partnership with the United States derives from the same illusion: that post-Soviet Russia, diminished and enfeebled by having “lost the cold war,” can play the role of a great power only on American terms. In the real world, when Obama took office, everything Russia supposedly needed from the United States, including in order to modernize, it could obtain from other partners. Today, two of its bilateral relationships—with Beijing and Berlin, and increasingly with Paris—are already much more important to Moscow, politically, economically and even militarily, than its barren relations with a Washington that for two decades has seemed chronically unreliable, even duplicitous.

Behind that perception lies a more fundamental weakness of the reset: conflicting American and Russian understandings of why it was needed. Each side continues to blame the other for the deterioration of relations after 1991. Neither Obama nor the Clinton-era officials advising him have conceded there were any mistakes in US policy toward post-Soviet Russia. Instead, virtually the entire US political class persists in blaming Russia and in particular Putin, even though he came to power only in 2000. In effect, this exculpatory history deletes the historic opportunities lost in Washington in the 1990s and later. It also means that the success or failure of the reset is “up to the Russians” and that “Moscow’s thinking must change,” not Washington’s.

. . .

... in addition to triumphalist fallacies about the end of the cold war, three new tenets of neo–cold war US policy have become axiomatic. First, that present-day Russia is as brutally antidemocratic as its Soviet predecessor. Evidence cited usually includes the Kremlin’s alleged radioactive poisoning of a KGB defector, Alexander Litvinenko, in London, in 2006, and its ongoing persecution of the imprisoned oligarch Mikhail Khodorkovsky, on whom the New York Times and Washington Post have bestowed the mantle of the great Soviet-era dissenters Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn and Andrei Sakharov. Second, that Russia’s nature makes it a growing threat abroad, especially to former Soviet republics, as demonstrated by its “invasion and occupation of Georgia” in August 2008. And third, that more NATO expansion is therefore necessary to protect both Georgia and Ukraine.

. . .

The Obama administration has done nothing to discourage such anti-Russian axioms and too much to encourage them. [In addition, Obama has revised] ... the reset to include so-called democracy-promotion policies—intrusions into Russia’s domestic politics ...


It's worthwhile to read the full article, if you have the time.

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Dec 21, 2018 9:20:12 AM | 58

Target Huawei//....

https://theduran.com/us-pressures-germany-to-ditch-huawei-over-security-concerns/

Yet,
Huawei is just the appetiser,
Here come the main course...

Eight nations alliance 2
https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2018-12-20/us-allies-reportedly-planning-unprecedented-sanctions-against-beijing-over
[Those damn chicoms just cant've enough enemies, they'r trying to piss off the entire
civilised world..
heheheh]

Iraq, Libya, Kosovo, Syria,
TAM, Tibet, Xinjiang, Huawei,...

Fool me once, ...
Indeed.

Posted by: denk | Dec 21, 2018 1:43:37 PM | 59

** I politely urge all other readers to take a look at post 41 and its links and give some constructive feedback. **
---
Karlof1 @ 42
My experience within the Green Party is its organizational basis made for dysfunctional candidate support.

Agreed! In addition, the two Green Parties in the US have absolutely NO interest in changing our "black-box" voting system either. These are the computerized voting machines with "proprietary software" that is literally legally impossible to audit, even by county and state election officials. And even if they could, it's relatively easy to hide--even from software-programming-savvy eyes--election-manipulating code lines that are embedded within thousands of other lines.

For inexplicable reasons, the two Green Parties simply have no problem with having NO election integrity, which will--of course--forever doom their candidates, assuming that one even comes close to winning a significant seat somewhere.

IMHO, most of their leaders are part of the "controlled opposition," acting as lightning rods to channel political discontent into harmless playing in sandboxes. They join most other such groups that are supposed to fundamentally change our society yet never seem to make any headway, as the success of their campaigns depend on... manipulated elections!

Posted by: Catalyst | Dec 21, 2018 2:45:22 PM | 60

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