Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
May 12, 2019

The MoA Week In Review - OT 2019-26

Last week's posts at Moon of Alabama:

Turkey called on Russia to end the Syrian operation but to no avail. The Syrian Army continues to make some progress. This will be slow and long fight with many interruptions.

See also Whitney Webb: Another Whistleblower Bites the Dust as The Intercept Adds a Third Notch to Its Burn Belt

See also Gareth Porter: Bolton Is Spinning Israeli ‘Intelligence’ to Push for War Against Iran

---
Other issues:

On Friday the Marco Rubio clownish puppet in Venezuela called for more demonstrations:

Guaido called for a national demonstration on Saturday to reject measures taken by the Supreme Court against opposition lawmakers.
...
"We're not going to stop, we're going to stay in the streets. This is a process that will end with Venezuela's liberty."

On Saturday the Random Guyaidó spoke to demonstrators in Caracas. This was in the richer part of the city, the oppositions stronghold.

The AP's report first version:

A modest crowd of Venezuelans has taken to the streets to show support for the opposition-led congress which has come under increasing pressure from the government of President Nicolás Maduro.
...
Guaidó on Saturday addressed roughly 1,000 supporters gathered in Caracas, reflecting both fear and demoralization among supporters after the attempted military rebellion.

AP later published a revised version:

Meanwhile, noticeably diminished crowds at opposition protests reflected a growing fear and demoralization that has permeated Guaidó's ranks of supporters after he led a failed military uprising on April 30. In previous months, thousands of demonstrators heeded his calls to protest.

On Saturday, a modest crowd of several hundred Venezuelans gathered in the capital of Caracas.

Guaidó wants foreign military support:

He announced Saturday a forthcoming meeting with U.S. military officials and said that new actions taken by the opposition will seek to "achieve the necessary pressure" to put an end to the Bolivarian revolution launched 20 years ago by the late socialist President Hugo Chávez.

Guaidó has said that as Venezuela's rightful leader he reserves the right to invite foreign military actions in the same way independence hero Simon Bolivar hired 5,000 British mercenaries to liberate South America from Spain. He says any such help should be considered "cooperation," instead of intervention, something he has accused Maduro of allowing in the form of military and intelligence support from allies Cuba and Russia.

---

Pompous snowflakes:

Macron driven along the Champs Elysee in a large convoy, smiling and waving to the crowd lining the street. The crowd? (vid)

BBC - Andrew Neil and Ben Shapiro on abortion, Obama and Middle East (vid, start at ~10min); When diligently questioned, Shapiro gives up and ends the interview.

New Yorker - Michael Oren Cuts Short a Conversation About Israel;

Use as open thread ...

Posted by b on May 12, 2019 at 08:53 AM | Permalink

Comments
next page »

Well it's been another week of lies and madness. I'm sure next week will continue the same path of crazy. Sad times we all live in and as old person with no children I do feel sorry for them in this New World of madness. I wish it wasn't so.

Posted by: jo6pac | May 12, 2019 9:36:43 AM | 1

So what happened with US collapse Real Soon TM narrative that is so popular in Alt Media?

I thought that people will start eating each other in the US because Muh American Collapse soon TM?

"No one takes the US seriously anymore" "Unipolar order is rapidly collapsing" etc.

So much emotional low quality trash in alt media these days. So much confirmation bias. So much rose colored glasses. Phew.

And presumably the US will realy realy soon continue spiralling down down to Stage 5 of collapse, to the post apocalypse world, and eventually to the very extinction of multicellular lifeforms in North America. The collapse is very strong!

But in the real world, things are rather different.

The US is pretty strong, and the US is fighting very hard. It is slowing down the emergence of multipolarity by cracking down really hard on its adversaries.

Meanwhile the vassals (Europe, Saudi Canada, Australia, Japan) etc. remain vassals and India is moving closer to the US.

My estimates point to slow decline and lots of drama during the next 30 years. With the US losing its superpower status by maybe 2050 and becoming one of the major powers in a multipolar world.

But no US surrender anytime soon.

You guys often underestimate the US. Too much commentary of the type "US collapse real soon" "The breathtaking weakness of the Empire" "The World To America: "You're Fired!" "Russia and China gave surrender conditions to the US" etc.

When will the quality of alt media analyses get higher?

Do you know how many people in the Communist Block believed about the imminent collapse of the US? And do you know who collapsed instead? The USSR.

Lets hope you are not as naive as them. Be more critical, please. I expect higher quality of analysis.

Posted by: Passer by | May 12, 2019 9:49:32 AM | 2

https://www.presstv.com/Detail/2019/05/12/595745/UAE-Fujairah-port-explosion-fire
a number of oil tankers hit by the explosions by their hull numbers [as reported in the link} as follows:
please fill out the following.
ownership registered owner of the . insured by cargo cargo
of ship ? country reg. owner corp? whom? from to
Almajd supertanker No.: 9773800;
Marzouq supertanker No.: 9165762
Marij oil tanker No.: 9394741
Alamijal oil tanker No.:91477674
Khamsa 10 oil tanker No.: 94320704

how many people were on board, and what is their condition...

also the link suggest explosions were experienced this week in Yanbu, a Saudi Arabia’s petroleum refining port city ..again
no one seems to know who is responsible?

Posted by: snake | May 12, 2019 9:57:17 AM | 3

Just read the Michael Oren interview.
I must admit I am surprised that someone from the New Yorker, Chotiner, even questions Oren as closely as Chotiner does regarding Oren's statement that as a New York-born Jew he has the right to live anywhere in Greater Israel---a better right than a Palestinian. And Oren (born Bornstein, in NYC) cites, again, the "tribal" right going back 3,000years, comparing this tribal membership to that of a Siouix Native American. Because I am used to the New Yorker and its editor, David Remnick, being a nest of crypto and not so crypto Zionism. To the extent that I finally canceled by sub. Couldn't stand to read it anymore.

Obviously this tribal business is the new talking point that is being used by all of these usurpers.

The very strong implication is that this is a genetically determined tribal membership that can be traced back to Judea or wherever 3,000 years ago. Every time someone cites this tribal membership I suggest that they be challenged on a simple basis of DNA testing to prove their contention.

One of the many ironies generated by the Jewish State in Palestine is that Germany supports the JSP and all of the shoddy premises and baggage that go along with it, such as Oren's BS "tribal" narrative, while denying the right of return and naturalization to children and grandchildren of women who were forcibly expatriated by the Third Reich or who fled for their lives. The Germans do not dare describe themselves as "tribe" defined genetically, yet apparently support the JSP's right to do so as a premise of their right to exist, annex lands, live wehrever they want, and oppress the Pals.

Oren has the chutzpah to describe the JSP as a "western-style democracy" while maintaining that it is based on tribal identity. A "Western style democracy" cannot be based on a tribal/genetic identity. This guy studied at Princeton?

As long as Jews/Zionists cite a tribal identity as justifying the occupation of Palestine and the oppression of truly indigenous Palestinians, I think we have the right to call out these Jews, and the whole JSP enterprise, for their and its obvious racism.

I realize I am not saying anything terribly original here, but the blather of someone like Oren is so utterly infuriating, not only in its arrogance and shoddy logic, that it makes the hair on the back of my neck rise!

Posted by: Really? | May 12, 2019 10:08:56 AM | 4

Posted by: Really? | May 12, 2019 10:08:56 AM | 4

There is no genetic difference between Jewish, Christian or Muslim Israelis or Palestinians except the time European genes were integrated in the gene pool.

Romans, Greeks, Central European crusaders are all part of the mix.

You cannot use genetics to decide who is a "tribe", never mind "nation", and who is not.

You can use believe systems - and I guess, the believe system of Jewish US democrats is fundamentally opposed to the belief system of right wing Israelis.

Posted by: somebody | May 12, 2019 10:30:20 AM | 5

@ Passer 2
Your analysis is all wet. US enemies are resisting the fruitless attempt of the US to hold on to world dominance. This includes the top three defying the US, North Korea Iran and Venezuela, plus China and Russia who are shifting Turkey and India over to their side because it is the side that is growing in strength as the US gets weaker with its ineffective military leading the way. The US slide is actually being helped by President Trump and his go-it-alone strategy, which includes the breaking of treaties, and now the US has no strong allies in the world including Europe. The recent US defeats in the Middle East have set the tone, with other countries moving into the vacuum.

Posted by: Don Bacon | May 12, 2019 10:39:00 AM | 6

Why is the world's no1 terrorist state issuing threats,applying sanctions left ,right centre ?

This is obscene.
The unitedsnake should be given a taste of its own medicine.

I started off reading op eds in antiwar.com before the attacks on ex Yugo, Im still reading op eds until this day.

Its long pass time complaining, its action time.

No govn has the clout to sanction unitedsnakes,
no UN resolutions are gonna target US, its up to the world's antiwar citizens.

Every now and then I heard about cries to boycott
Israel, why NO call to boycott US, the world's no 1 terrorist state ?

Posted by: denk | May 12, 2019 10:50:12 AM | 7

The US is making Chinese goods more expensive in the US. . .that'll show China who's the boss! (heh)

Posted by: Don Bacon | May 12, 2019 10:53:42 AM | 8

Amazing that the New Yorker posted that interview with Oren.

There's going to be hell to pay in the offices of Advance Communications on Monday May 13th--"Condé Nast" is just an upmarket redressing of the Staten Island (NYC) Advance.

(Example: Vogue Magazine, the jewel of Condé Nast, supposes it a good idea to pretend its annual Metropolitan Museum fashion department party is a cool place to be. If Kim and Khloé Kardashian be there, and they were, it aint cool.)

Posted by: Jay | May 12, 2019 10:58:34 AM | 9

Posted by: Really? | May 12, 2019 10:08:56 AM | 4

add:

Germany/Europe have always supported the two state solution.

Netanyahu is pretty isolated if not for Trump. And Trump may not be that much of a help

President Donald Trump made headlines in Washington and in Israel on Thursday by saying that Israel will be able to handle the security challenges created by his decision to withdraw all American forces from Syria, because “we give Israel $4.5 billion a year” in security assistance.

Posted by: somebody | May 12, 2019 11:03:23 AM | 10

@2 Passer
Your comments unfortunately have some truth to them, but the US Sanctions game is going to wear thin. Some of the recent foreign military purchases of Russian equipment, such as Iraq buying Russian T-90s, might be due to fear that buying US equipment makes the buyer more vulnerable to US Sanctions, even though secondary sanctions can impact a manufacturers ability to service equipment sold to a sanctioned country. Iraq also just signed a $15b deal with Siemens that GE was bidding for, although GE might be subcontract work.
I will be curious to see what the EU has to say about Boeing's Band-Aid on the 737 MAX, and note that Germany is thumbing its nose at the US on the F-35, Huawei,Nordstream 2, and Russian sanctions.

Posted by: Schmoe | May 12, 2019 11:11:09 AM | 11

China’s Banks Are Running Out of Dollars
https://www.wsj.com/articles/chinas-banks-are-running-out-of-dollars-11556012442

Kyle Bass, Bannon Urge Trump to ‘Play Hardball’ in China Talks
https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2019-04-25/kyle-bass-steve-bannon

Kyle Bass: China is already out of money
https://www.businessinsider.com/kyle-bass-china-does-not-have-enough-money-2016-2

Hong Kong a ticking financial time bomb? A thrilling story, but don’t buy what Kyle Bass is selling
https://www.scmp.com/week-asia/opinion/article/3008816/hong-kong-ticking-financial-time-bomb-thrilling-story-dont-buy

Posted by: John Smith | May 12, 2019 11:12:14 AM | 12

The Quiet Panic in Hong Kong
https://www.centerforsecuritypolicy.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/04/The-Quiet-Panic-in-Hong-Kong-April-2019.pdf

Posted by: John Smith | May 12, 2019 11:13:54 AM | 13

Don Bacon it is your analysis that is all wet.

Passer by is simply speaking a truth which you are dissembling in your comment not refuting.

Besides, fact: we already live in a multipolar world. What US, Russia and China are doing is competing against each other largely to gain market share for their products and secure resources to produce ever more products.

What they are doing more and more is cooperating politically and militarily, tying down the global capitalistic enterprise amongst themselves and their vassal states to ensure the growth and safety of assets of their respective home grown oligarchs who are calling the political shots by financing the politicos. They are doing this by increasingly making a sham of the peoples' rights though disinformation and misdirection, scapegoating and lying.

Nationalism is for the impoverished white "populists" who have been beaten down by capitalism. Globalism is for the "capitalists" who remain firmly in control.

The political leaders of US, Russia and China are globalists.

Also, you are dissembling at 6 when you say "The US is making Chinese goods more expensive in the US. . ."

No, this is not "the US". This purely Trump through executive order. The majority of the US and Congress are against Trump's tariff wars.

Posted by: donkeytale | May 12, 2019 11:23:22 AM | 14

On the one hand, this cooperation among the major powers removes the threat of war among the major powers.

However, the cost for this peace is implementation of a world economic order which will continue to repress the 99.99% in favor of the .01%

Yes, including all the good commentators at MoA who refuse to believe what is occurring in real time before our very eyes.

Watch and see. No war in Vz. No war in Iran. Yemen continues with nary a peep from Russia. Syria is already partitioned through deals between Putin and Nuttyahoo, Putin and Erdogan.

There will soon enough be a tariff-ending deal between Trump and China. Trump's re-election depends on a deal. China needs a deal to keep its export machine humming along.

Posted by: donkeytale | May 12, 2019 11:36:47 AM | 15

@Somebody #5
"You cannot use genetics to decide who is a "tribe", never mind "nation", and who is not. "

I am not making this argument.
Surely it is obvious from my comment that this is not my theory!!

What I am saying is that those who make such an argument should be obliged to prove it. It is in essence a biological/scientific argument, so prove it, already. Otherwise STFU.

DNA testing has AFAIK shown no genetic connection between Ashkenazi Jews and inhabitants of Palestine 3,000 years ago.

This "tribal" argument is as nutty as the one whereby Native Americans are thought to be the Lost Tribes of Israel. So, it is nuttily odd that Oren makes a comparison of Jews qua "tribe" and the Sioux qua "tribe." Next time maybe Chotiner should ask him whether he has a position on this---it might justify the takeover of the USA govt by Zionists! But somehow I get the feeling that there won't be a "next time,' for Chotiner. Maybe for David "Ziophile" Remnick.

Posted by: Really? | May 12, 2019 11:44:06 AM | 16

A glimpse of "late capitalism" era:

Carlos Ghosn's successor, Hiroto Saikawa, under siege from within as Nissan profit sinks

And here's the correct theoretical explanation to this phenomenon, ironically, published one day earlier:

Productivity, investment and profitability


--//--

Meanwhile, Europe desintegrates, one piece at a time:

Poll surge for Brexit party sparks panic among Tories and Labour

Remainers don't get tired of shooting themselves in their feet.

Posted by: vk | May 12, 2019 11:52:55 AM | 17

donkey is here to obfuscate again.

*China, Russia no different from fukus*

Iraq, Libya,Syria, Yemen, Iran, Venezuela...

def of psychopath
those who knowingly , brazenly spout bald faced lies.

You pass the psychopath test again,.

Posted by: denk | May 12, 2019 12:09:28 PM | 18

@ donkeytale 15
You have approached Passer in dampness, you are both all wet with Passer's key contention that "The US is pretty strong, and the US is fighting very hard. It is slowing down the emergence of multipolarity by cracking down really hard on its adversaries." But then you go on to say "we already live in a multipolar world" so who can make any sense of all that.

Posted by: Don Bacon | May 12, 2019 12:18:30 PM | 19

There are official reports from UAE stating that four tankers have been sabotaged
near the UAE port of Fujairah.

Is it the beginning of a false flag?

Posted by: Carl D | May 12, 2019 12:19:02 PM | 20

In the grip of Brexit :)

Right from the start, 2016, many stated “I’ll believe it when I see it, it will never happen” (e.g. me, GB will never leave..) As we all know if national votes go against the EU, some trick or way-round is found and ppl are called on to vote ‘better’ and comply. This MO is entrenched.

Cameron’s political ploy (calling an advisory ref. on a smokey Brexit outcome, to quash UKIP, little ppl nationalists to be retained, etc.) failed as the wrong result came up, and no plan B for nullifying it existed.

The PTB were so confident they went all out in perso speech and letters to households (I have read) to state that the result of an ‘advisory’ (i.e. non-binding) referendum would be respected.

A first fail: if ref. results are to be acted on, it must be enshrined in law. So all are working with ‘deals’, ‘opinions’, ‘leaders’, etc. in a fuzzy, indeterminate, screechy, landscape.

The future after Cameron quit left only a few outcomes:

1) May launches art. 50 - then, —> at end point, art. 50 is revoked and return to previous. With huge loss of status, power.

2) Crash out with ‘no deal’

3) Drag out everything, create mega confusions, the end result is that GB will become a kind of ‘protectorate’ of the EU, with a sort of ‘minor-associate’ status. (e.g. in other context Puerto Rico) - this compromise is generally not spoken about, as demeaning, unbearalbe for the UK.

Vids, recommended for those interested.

Followed Guy Verhofstadt, BBC (2 parts, eng)

Brexit behind closed doors

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IV3l3pspeUg

Arte (followed Michel Barnier) only available till end May. Eng / other lang. subs.

https://www.arte.tv/en/videos/078746-000-A/brexit-the-clock-is-ticking/


Posted by: Noirette | May 12, 2019 12:31:01 PM | 21

@ donkeytale 15
There will soon enough be a tariff-ending deal between Trump and China. China needs a deal to keep its export machine humming along.
No it doesn't. Why should China care what price its goods are sold for in WalMart? Besides, it is a misconception that China's economy is dependent on exports. While it is a huge exporter, China's net exports (exports minus imports) accounted for only about 2% of its total GDP in 2017. Meanwhile China's economy is growng at more than 6%, making it the fastest growing major economy in the world. Compare to US at 3% and EU at 1%. Besides, any tariff-ending deal would require China to change its growth model under its Plan 2025, which it won't do because it is so successful.

Posted by: Don Bacon | May 12, 2019 12:31:45 PM | 22

first off - thanks b, for another great week of insightful coverage with lots to consider...

@2 passerby... you remind me of myself - devils advocate and being controversial, lol... that was fun... now, the fact is most of the folks here at moa as i see it are much more nuanced and reasonable then you let on.. very few think the usa is going to crawl under a rock, or go away any time soon.. even if the planet continues to worsen thanks neo-liberalism, i don't think anyone is naive enough to think they know... in fact, the ussr going defunct so quickly was not something that everyone foresaw either... so, it is always possible something seemingly insignificant can alter the path of the usa in a rather quick and abrupt way... most aren't expecting this, but dreamers can consider it.. regardless - i enjoyed your post... did you have your tongue pushing against your cheek when you wrote it? lol...

what is the deal with nigel farage? is this the uk msms attempt at putting him in the leadership position to fend off the thought of corbyn? is this there answer to their made up corbygeddon??

@4 really? i read the article as well... it is pretty shocking actually... it shows one just how out of touch israel is, although maybe passerby is going to challenge me on this!!! statements like this below reflect how out of touch with reality oren and by extension isrealis are.. it refers to the millennials in israel....
"Remember, this is a deeply traumatized generation. This is a generation that—virtually everyone in it has lost friends and family members to terror. And Israel, in contrast to every other Western society, becomes more traditional, more religious, and you can’t overlook the fact that people are deeply connected to the land of Israel."

Posted by: james | May 12, 2019 12:36:11 PM | 23

passerby 2

What if the world's citizens boycott unitedsnake
products. ?

NO takers ?
People are addicted to starbucks, KFC, MAcdonalds, HOlywood, porns.....
perhaps people are even addicted to merkkan B.S.

hehehehhehe

Posted by: denk | May 12, 2019 12:37:48 PM | 24

Talking about the US in decline today is like talking about the USSR in decline during the Brezhnev stagnation or Reagan's escalation of the Cold War. Yeah, you're not going to wake up tomorrow or next year and read about the surrender of the US, but the medium term inevitable is baked in. That's why it's flailing more and more desperately. Where it once operated with impunity, such as in Nicaragua, Panama, Iraq, Yugoslavia, and Iraq again, it increasingly has to gauge the reaction of other great powers to avoid broader escalation and fracture among its allies. Noriega's and Saddam's defiance of the US was met with an instant invasion. Now the US pressures, blusters, negotiates, and sends bombers and carriers around to "send a message".

Like they said in game of thrones, a king doesn't have to tell everyone he's the king.

Posted by: Cesare | May 12, 2019 12:38:14 PM | 25

Don Bacon

I believe you are intelligent enough to discern the minour differences in our statements. Apparently, you can't or won't counter argue mine since all you do is throw a wet wash cloth over them.

"The emergence of multipolarity" doesn't necesssarily imply multipolarity is non-existent. At worst PB believes multipolarity is, uhm, emergent while I believe it already exists.

The Bush/Cheney neocon Iraqi war misadventure of 2003 was the last gasp for America's self-delusional belief in unipolarity and the outcome and aftermath of that war proved the existence of multipolarity.

Posted by: donkeytale | May 12, 2019 12:40:58 PM | 26

denk

you misquoted me. I didn't say there is "no difference between China, Russia and fukus". that is jackrabbetian style misquotation. Maybe you are a sock puppet for Jackrabbit? b please check the IP for these two posters. (Lmao. JK, I won't resort to JR's tactical blogging techniques).

You are actually the one obfuscating. And also have it wrong. How unique for you. Lol.

Name calling is a great comeback but hardly evidence.

Posted by: donkeytale | May 12, 2019 12:49:42 PM | 27

@ dt 26
Okay, that comment mostly makes sense.

Posted by: Don Bacon | May 12, 2019 1:00:23 PM | 28

donkey 27
*Besides, fact: we already live in a multipolar world. What US, Russia and China are doing is competing against each other largely to gain market share for their products and secure resources to produce ever more products.

What they are doing more and more is cooperating politically and militarily, tying down the global capitalistic enterprise amongst themselves and their vassal states to ensure the growth and safety of assets of their respective home grown oligarchs who are calling the political shots by financing the politicos. They are doing this by increasingly making a sham of the peoples' rights though disinformation and misdirection, scapegoating and lying.

Nationalism is for the impoverished white "populists" who have been beaten down by capitalism. Globalism is for the "capitalists" who remain firmly in control.

The political leaders of US, Russia and China are globalists.*

This is the theme you and pft keep pushing here,
*its not Russia/China vs fukus world tyranny,
but the Russia/China/fukus globalists vs we the 99%.*

Just like pft telling us,
*dont ditch the USA, ditch your own elites oligards'

You walks , looks, quacks like a misdirection agent.
Wittingly or unwittingly ?

Posted by: denk | May 12, 2019 1:06:25 PM | 29

Multi-polar / and USA hegemony, full spectrum dominance cannot coexist. These are opposite concepts.

Multi-polar is happening. USA dominance is slipping away in spite of the fat ass con man, the walrus and the other fat ass con man. The USA has never rescinded "Full Spectrum Dominance". This continues to be the primary objective and the guiding principle of US Foreign Policy.

Any foreign government which had not prepared alternatives after having seen and heard that insane declaration in 1997, will find themselves in a bad way.

Posted by: Kristan hinton | May 12, 2019 1:10:52 PM | 30

@ denk 29
What US, Russia and China are doing is competing against each other largely to gain market share for their products and secure resources to produce ever more products.
Not Russia, with a GDP equal to Texas.
What they are doing more and more is cooperating politically and militarily
US cooperating with China? No. China's BRI vehicle is staggering in its immensity, and the US can only try to slash its tires. Its military is becoming pretty challenging also, headlined by its long-range missiles which force a US naval standoff from the Central Kingdom.

Posted by: Don Bacon | May 12, 2019 1:16:26 PM | 31

Don Bacon 31

YOu miss the quotation mark.
Thats donkey's ass shit.

heheheh

Posted by: denk | May 12, 2019 1:21:02 PM | 32

@ denk 32
My apologies. I'm trying to repair a windshield ding and blog at the same time. Neither is turning out well.

Posted by: Don Bacon | May 12, 2019 1:28:54 PM | 33

The demise of the united states won’t be brought about from the out side, but from within! No one here has even suggested this obvious certainty.
Hate ultimately destroys it selve. ‘Babylon will fall.’
We have recently witnessed the end of the dis-united kingdom. Ha ha I’m glad.
But clearly the academics here didi’nt notice !
Well the same is about to happen in the u s . It’s natures way.

Haveing said that I do feel that Russia and China should be funding more opposition party’s and political subversives. both in us and uk .
We love our two country’s and for that very reason, we hate what our country’s have now become . And the degenerates running our countrys

Posted by: Mark2 | May 12, 2019 1:34:05 PM | 34

There are official reports from UAE stating that four tankers have been sabotaged near the UAE port of Fujairah.
Is it the beginning of a false flag? Posted by: Carl D | May 12, 2019 12:19:02 PM | 20

yes, a link was provided as well as the list of ships involved @ snake @ 3

interesting nothing else heard about this anywhere?

Posted by: snake | May 12, 2019 1:50:03 PM | 35

Funny how Guaidó is quoted as saying that he reserves the right to invite foreign military intervention "in the same way independence hero Simon Bolivar hired 5,000 British mercenaries". IMO, if the United States is stupid enough to invade Venezuela, they will come up against many José Antonio Páez's, one of the outstanding guerrilla leaders in nineteenth century Latin America:

In early June 1821, the 6,500 men republican army was divided and organized in three divisions. The 1st division, made up of 2,500 men, was under Páez's command and formed by two battalions: Bravos de Apure (Apure Braves) and Cazadores Britanicos (British Hunters or as more often translated to English, the British Legions) and seven cavalry regiments.

By 20 June, all three republican divisions converge from different directions in the plain of Carabobo. With the royalists well entrenched in the center and the south, on the morning of 21 June, Páez was given command of an additional cavalry regiment and ordered to take it together with his own division through the hills on the north side and into the plain and to engage the Spanish, while the 2nd division would stay behind Páez and the 3rd would remain in a defensive position waiting to engage the enemy in the center.

On seeing Páez's men move, the Spanish commander, Miguel de la Torre, orders one of his elite battalions, the Burgos, to reinforce and defend the north flank. Initially, the Spanish so fiercely engage the Bravos de Apure battalion that it had to fall back on two occasions. Páez sent his Cazadores Britanicos to help the Bravos and together they fought back the Spanish, now reinforced themselves by two additional battalions. As the fighting intensified, de la Torre sent more troops to the north. Páez then sent his cavalry further north to outflank the Spanish and come down on the plain from behind. At this moment, the battle is obviously going against the Spanish, who in desperation kept sending reinforcements. In the meantime, Páez's men were gaining terrain and closing on falling Spanish from all sides. Some of the Spanish battalions supposed to join and reinforce the engagement in the north, on seeing how their comrades are faring, decide to disobey orders and retreat. As it becomes evident that the republicans were winning the battle, the other divisions moved forward, but by now the bulk of the work had already been done by Páez and his men.

With the Battle of Carabobo, the military fate of the Spanish army in Venezuela was sealed. The victory was carried by Páez. Bolívar promoted him on site to General in Chief of the republican army.

In the battle, the Spanish lost over 65% of their men; the survivors took refuge in the castle of Puerto Cabello. Until it was taken by Páez and his men in 1823, this was the last Spanish stronghold in Venezuela territory.

Posted by: Maracatu | May 12, 2019 1:50:31 PM | 36

Re # 17 on Brexit

The Guardian just cannot bring itself to open its mouth and state the obvious:
The emotional blackmail and dire warnings against the growth of "populism" (code word for what???) and "giving votes to a far-right leader" etc. apparently are not working.

The obvious conclusion that the Guardian cannot state in clear English:
Britons want OUT, and will vote for whoever will lead with this agenda. They probably want OUT more than ever after seeing the lengths to which their "betters" would go to change or negotiate in bad, insincere faith, or water down to invisibility the results of Referendum 1.

I suspect that imposing a second referendum on the public will produce even more "woke" determination to get OUT, to shout OUT loud and clear.

Posted by: Really? | May 12, 2019 1:59:20 PM | 37

@James 23

The establishment is just as terrified about Farage as it is about Corbyn. Just for differing reasons. Farage represents the desire to brexit (something they are desperate to avoid). Corbyn represents socialism.

I can see Farage being let in before Corbyn, partially as no one is threatening a coup against Farage.

Could be argued that the upcoming EU votes are the mother of all protest votes. Tories (usually in 1st place) are polling in fourth...

Posted by: Some Random Passer-by | May 12, 2019 2:05:22 PM | 38

Note to all, let's keep it simple. Donkeytale is a democrat. That should explain everything he says.

Posted by: Just Me | May 12, 2019 2:15:39 PM | 39

Don Bacon thanks for cherry picking my comment into the least arguable part. At least it is something we can chew on besides a damp wash rag.

@ donkeytale 15
There will soon enough be a tariff-ending deal between Trump and China. China needs a deal to keep its export machine humming along.
No it doesn't. Why should China care what price its goods are sold for in WalMart? Besides, it is a misconception that China's economy is dependent on exports. While it is a huge exporter, China's net exports (exports minus imports) accounted for only about 2% of its total GDP in 2017.

Good points but your macroeconomic analysis is way too simplistic for an economy as complex and unique as China's. Trump's tariffs are moronic and the Great Orange DealMaker has no leverage but there will be a deal soon enough anyway.

First, you apparently ignore or don't fully comprehend the role of globalism in the Chinese economy. Globalism was the main point of my comment to which you took narrow, nationalistic exception on the tariff deal part.

China does a lot of manufacturing for foreign businesses, including U.S. companies. They ship raw materials to China. Factory workers build the final products and ship them back to the United States. In this way, a lot of China's so-called "exports" are technically American products.

Here's another factor, the number of Chinese workers employed by small-midsize employers who drive job growth, profit growth and stock prices...all of intense value to China's political leaders, bosses and shareholders, AKA "globalists."

But some sectors in China are likely to feel the impact of US tariffs more than others. The brunt of any negative impact is likely to be felt by small and medium-sized enterprises that export to the US or that make goods for export, analysts say.

These types of firms account for about 70 percent of all jobs in the country, says Andrew Collier, managing director of Orient Capital Research, an independent macroeconomic research firm.

The Chinese economy may also be hurt if tariffs drive manufacturers out of China towards South Korea, Thailand, Indonesia or Vietnam.

Now, you can argue the Chinese can simply sell their goods elsewhere or produce more for internal consumption and easily move on down the highway. That is a great point if it works out that way...akin to the argument that the US and Russia could simply shut down their military arms manufacturing sectors and easily redirect to production of different goods/services to benefit their people and the world. This is obviously true in the abstract but how easily and how long will it take to make this massive macroeconomic transition?

A long time and with a great deal of localised workforce pain in the interim. China will make a deal. Probably a great one for them too, given the buffoon they are dealing with...lol

We can get into an argument about how much of China's domestic economy consists of overvalued, over-leveraged assets such as real estate (sound familiar?) or how the inevitable evolution of China into a mature, then late stage capitalist service economy will somehow miraculously lead to a more just and equitable world for the 99.9% but that's for another day.

Posted by: donkeytale | May 12, 2019 2:20:29 PM | 40

Donkey's meme is...
*China might be the lesser evil,
but blah blah blah*
[Not deserving support]

There'r those extremists who claim
*China is much worse than fukus* !

Lets cut donkey some slack,
he's just a moderate troll.

hehehhe

Posted by: denk | May 12, 2019 2:24:01 PM | 41

@31 Don Bacon
"What US, Russia and China are doing is competing against each other largely to gain market share for their products and secure resources to produce ever more products.
Not Russia, with a GDP equal to Texas."

Russia is the only non-Middle East country besides the US with both vast oil and gas resources and the ability to destroy the United States in 30 minutes. They punch above their weight.

Posted by: Schmoe | May 12, 2019 2:26:43 PM | 42

Denk,

Once again you aren't making an argument or countering mine. Just adhomming and drawing Pft into the attack who isn't even here afaik.

As per usual with you. Yawn.

Posted by: donkeytale | May 12, 2019 2:28:47 PM | 43

"Just Me" lol.

Let's keep it simple. Sure. You are a fascist. That does explain the fact you say nothing.

Posted by: donkeytale | May 12, 2019 2:30:29 PM | 44

@38 sr passer by.. thanks.. it seems splitting the vote works up to a point..not sure how it will work for the uk, but i appreciate your additional comment on the eu vote, which i am not following..

regarding the uae blasts story - here is fars news on it.. http://en.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13980222000759

regarding random guy saying all this.. the guy is asking for military intervention from the usa.. makes sense.. the usa holds him up to the world as their puppet and then the puppet asks for military intervention from the master... can't get more clear then that.. if the ordinary person in venezuala is made aware of it, i can't see how any of them would want that, or this random guy dude, even if it is an evangelical like his buddies in the usa - pompeo and brazil -boneyerasso.. pardon my spelling, lol..

Posted by: james | May 12, 2019 2:33:02 PM | 45

Saad bin Khalid Al Jabry.. is this going to be the new kashoggi? or will clown prince take a different approach..

Posted by: james | May 12, 2019 2:37:18 PM | 46

donkey 43

Your argument is...
Russia/China/fukus are all evils in various degree.

HInt] all unworthy of our support, nuthin to see here, lets all go home, b might as well close this site.

hehehhehe

Posted by: denk | May 12, 2019 2:37:19 PM | 47

denk last line, rof.. that's funny!

Posted by: james | May 12, 2019 2:38:59 PM | 48

Don @ 31

Yes, "cooperating" militarily was poorly constructed on my part. Russia, Israel and the US cooperate militarily all the time, at least in the fact they coordinate (probably a better term) to stay out of each other's way and let the other do what they will in the ME.

China and the US have no military communication of which I'm aware so "cooperation" with China is probably too strong a word although I'm sure they discuss the S/N Korea situation and don't seem to be overly concerned with each other...although you are much more the military expert on these matters.

And yes, Russia is basically an economic non-factor overall, except in the very important energy sector....where there is much evidence of coordination and cooperation between the two countries, and pointedly including Saudi Arabia, who as it turns out is now fast friends with Putin's Russia...

Posted by: donkeytale | May 12, 2019 2:41:27 PM | 49

I just love it when analysts like passerby are able to so glibly extend a smooth sailing history of the world forward in time some 30 years with just the ordinary death mayhem and destruction of business as usual, species extinction, and so forth, and no unintended cataclysm!

I guess this view is supported by the history of the world so far!

I can only picture this coming week, and it looks murky to me, some bad weather, and so forth possible. Plus oh joy I won't likely be around 30 years from now to experience this brave new world unless the pharmaceutical and tech companies meld my soul into a machine!

Posted by: Geoff | May 12, 2019 2:41:55 PM | 50

Random Guyaido's mini-revolution is beginning to remind me of a musical theatre extravaganza from the Beatles era, The Roar Of The Greasepaint - The Smell Of The Crowd. Since everything else Random has tried seems to have flopped to some extent, maybe he should change tack and give a theme song a whirl.
"Where Would You Be Without Me?" has a nice ring to it and the crowds, if any, could object musically by singing "Who Can I Turn To?"

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | May 12, 2019 2:42:58 PM | 51

james 48

b once took a break of few years, during which
I suffered withdrawal syndrome.

Also I dont advocate b to start a 'boycott unitedsnake' campaign here.

I suspect it'd provoke tptb to shut down this site, if not the internet, in a jiffy.

hehehe

Posted by: denk | May 12, 2019 2:48:51 PM | 52

thanks denk.. i am disappointed debs is dead hasn't come back...

Posted by: james | May 12, 2019 2:51:31 PM | 53

@51 Guiado could be looking for a way out. I guess if Moustache and Pomp don't ride to the rescue he will be able to blame them for the coup fiasco.

Posted by: dh | May 12, 2019 2:54:20 PM | 54

hail savoir trump, hehehe...

mulshines read on trump is braindead... pat like seems to like it...

Posted by: james | May 12, 2019 2:55:19 PM | 55

This looks to be a UAE news site.
https://www.khaleejtimes.com/news/government/4-ships-subjected-to-sabotage-operations-near-uae-waters
"Four commercial cargo ships were subjected to sabotage operations today, 12th May, near UAE territorial waters in the Gulf of Oman, east of Fujairah, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, MOFAIC, has announced."
"The MOFAIC statement said that the carrying out acts of sabotage on commercial and civilian vessels and threatening the safety and lives of those on board is a serious development. It called on the international community to assume its responsibilities to prevent such actions by parties attempting to undermine maritime traffic safety and security."

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | May 12, 2019 2:59:43 PM | 56

Reports of explosions at the entrance to the Gulf? Those reports of tanker sabotage at the straight of Hormuz have not been completely verified and in some cases have been denied. There could have been a sabotage operation gone bad by a third party player. Non denial denials appear to be working this one.

Imagine 4 tankers blown up right at the entrance to the straight? One wonders who would get the blame, what the spun story would be, and what the reaction would entail.

The mockingbird media is silent so far.

Posted by: dltravers | May 12, 2019 3:57:02 PM | 57


Posted by: Really? | May 12, 2019 11:44:06 AM | 16

Oren does not say genetics, it is you who added this to the argument.

Sioux don't have citizenship in the US via genetics as I understand but territory - Canadian Sioux are Canadians, right?

To argue to an American - where citizenship derives from being born on the territory - on the basis of Israeli zionist ideas (actually this right to the tribal land is not even zionism, Herzl wanted a Jewish state wherever and discussed Argentinia as well as Palestine) is completely demented and shows how isolated and desperate they are. Oren probably realised it and that is why he stopped the interview.
The West Bank has a Palestinian population of close to 3 million, on Israeli territory close to 2 million, and similar numbers in Gaza.
They don't seem to have counted for quite some time and that is for a reason.
With the same right of return for Palestinians that Oren claims for Jewish Israelis that's it - Israel's Jewish majority is gone, spelling out the end of zionism. And without the right of return for Jews whereever they are the zionist dream is over, too. Israel will be just a normal state.

Posted by: somebody | May 12, 2019 3:59:58 PM | 58

The Bacon is burned

Don Bacon @28 [to donkey]: Okay, that comment mostly makes sense.

denk @29 [to donkey]: You walks , looks, quacks like a misdirection agent.

Anyone foolish enough to get wagged by donkeys 'tale' is also deserving of scorn because the asstroll has proven himself to be an asstroll many times at MoA.

Posted by: Jackrabbit | May 12, 2019 4:01:56 PM | 59

There are official reports from UAE stating that four tankers have been sabotaged near the UAE port of Fujairah.
Is it the beginning of a false flag? Posted by: Carl D | May 12, 2019 12:19:02 PM | 20
yes, a link was provided as well as the list of ships involved @ snake @ 3
interesting nothing else heard about this anywhere?
Posted by: snake | May 12, 2019 1:50:03 PM | 35

When it wasn't mentioned by CGTN, NHK, DW or ABC.au, I Googled it and found several denials sprinkled among the vaguely sourced stories.

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | May 12, 2019 4:04:16 PM | 60

F24 has borrowed DW's White Helmet sources in Syria to smear Ru & Assad.

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | May 12, 2019 4:12:58 PM | 61

Passer @2

I am of the opinion that many historical processes tend to unfold more slowly than people expect as well. It is difficult to affix a date to the end of the Roman Empire, for instance, because it happened over a long period of time.

That said, the urgency that I am seeing that suggests a very near-term crisis is not so much coming from the "alternative media" as it is from the corporate mass media (Operation Mockingbird" mass media) and the actions of the Empire of Chaos itself. For example, why the urgency to regime change Venezuela? It is not as if Americans really care at all about the people of Venezuela, and there is no impending shortages of oil on the radar, what with the US still coasting on the increase in output from the fracking boom, so why is the Empire doing the full court press on Venezuela? If socialist governments always self destruct then why not just sit back and wait? Why all of the coup attempts and cyber attacks and sabotage and subterfuge? That stuff is just burning any credibility America has left. Why the manic trade war against China? Why not take the necessary time to negotiate properly? What is so different now from a decade ago that America needs a deal right away?

No, it isn't the "alternative media" that is misreading the situation, rather it is the establishment and its corporate media that seems to be in a panic at the moment, and that is what I find curious. They are in a manic rush for aggression in all directions and there is really no obvious rational explanation for it. This suggests to me that the elites see fragility in their rule that is not being advertised. My guess is that the petrodollar is in a far more precarious state than appearances would suggest.

Posted by: William Gruff | May 12, 2019 4:24:22 PM | 62

62. Very astute analysis.

Of course, Socialist Governments would do just fine on a "level playing field" but that has never been the case. They've always been treated with great derision, harassment; and with Economic Sanctions, Subterfuge, CIA agents provocateurs, pallets of money for opposition groups, false flag events, and "military engagement".

All the people of Venezuela whom are not wealthy and who obviously do not own dollar accounts, will lose everything. Any and all of their money will become totally and irretrievably worthless.

Posted by: Kristan hinton | May 12, 2019 4:42:13 PM | 63

donkeytale @40

Your understanding of where China is at right now and where they are headed is comically flawed. There will be no "deal", at least not the one the US is demanding. The Chinese will offer another "deal" to Trump that he can save face with, but it will not include stopping China's climb to the top of the value-added ladder, or handing their banks over to Goldman-Sachs, or any of the other points that the US is claiming are show-stoppers. Even if the US throws 25% tariffs on everything China exports to the US it will only knock a point, maybe a point and a half off of the growth of China's GDP for a short while, but their GDP will continue to grow. Meanwhile those tariffs will absolutely throw America's economic growth into negative territory.

There will be no "deal". There is no benefit to one for China considering what America's demands are.

Posted by: William Gruff | May 12, 2019 4:50:04 PM | 64

Passerby @ 2: Yep, the empire's demise is a long way off.

Until the U$ dollar isn't the reserve currency of the globe, the empire rules.

Posted by: ben | May 12, 2019 5:02:25 PM | 65

#62 - "why the urgency to regime change Venezuela?"

Regime change in Venezuela has been an ongoing project for twenty years now. The Guaido events of these past months has been in the works since the summer of 2017, and has included the formation of the Lima Group and the organized boycott of last year's election. Understanding that it is Lopez who is actually the designated next leader, not Guaido, dates the current efforts as beginning 2013/14.

Canada's national broadcaster featured a story last week on the "beloved" Lopez. The continued insistence that Lopez/Guaido have overwhelming popularity in Venezuela (as opposed to Florida) is delusional yet continues to be reported as fact.
https://www.cbc.ca/radio/day6/venezuela-s-would-be-presidents-alien-the-school-play-women-s-football-stalkerware-after-parkland-more-1.5116896/venezuela-already-has-two-presidents-now-leopoldo-lópez-is-back-in-the-mix-too-1.5116900

Posted by: jayc | May 12, 2019 5:03:11 PM | 66

@ WG 64
Yes, China is in the driver's seat with a winning strategy and not about to change it with any deal that limits China or changes its procedures.

US corporations get it too, and will not give up their China business to please President Trump. Trump got after GM, for example, for US plant closings while doing business in China. But China, the world's largest auto market, is critical for GM. The company sold over 4 million vehicles in the country last year, even more than it sold in the North American market.

Posted by: Don Bacon | May 12, 2019 5:10:54 PM | 67

jayc @66

I have no disagreement with what you wrote, but the point remains that the US began rushing events this year instead of giving their plots and schemes time to mature. The chances of sparking an uprising in Venezuela is now close to 0% because the empire exposed itself to the Venezuelan people. The regime change plans for Venezuela have realistically been set back a couple years at this point.

The Empire of Chaos is acting desperate for some reason.

Posted by: William Gruff | May 12, 2019 5:12:23 PM | 68

...
If socialist governments always self destruct then why not just sit back and wait? Why all of the coup attempts and cyber attacks and sabotage and subterfuge?
...
Posted by: William Gruff | May 12, 2019 4:24:22 PM | 62

Wow! Two MORE nice questions.
I can hardly wait to hear The Swamp's answer.

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | May 12, 2019 5:16:57 PM | 69

Hu Xijin, Editor-in-chief of Chinese and English editions of the Global Times:

The sooner new tariffs on $300 b of Chinese goods come, the better. That means trade war comes to the 1st turning point, shifting from a comprehensive US offensive to a stalemate. The two sides will then compete on endurance. China’s political system will ensure we won’t lose.

Posted by: John Smith | May 12, 2019 5:27:47 PM | 71

recent study
Estimated Impacts of Tariffs on the U.S. Economy and Workers

Conclusion

By any measure, the imposition of tariffs by the United States and U.S. imports of steel, aluminum, motor vehicles and parts, some subset of products imported from China –or all of them is a net loss for the U.S. economy and U.S. workers. An examination of all the ways in which such tariffs, accompanied by retaliation by U.S. trading partners, affects purchasing and hiring decisions demonstrates that on balance U.S. farmers, manufacturers, services providers and their workers experience greater losses thangains. In some instances, the tariff actions erase all of the anticipated gains from tax reform. . .here

Posted by: Don Bacon | May 12, 2019 5:44:26 PM | 72

B, and others here who have a blog, hopefully you guys are not on targeted platforms, like WordPress. If not, it might be good to migrate BEFORE the truth purge comes your way, so you can at least point to the new location. I heard sites in Iceland are safer, for now.

Food for thought...

Posted by: xLemming | May 12, 2019 5:47:52 PM | 73

Nobody assigning blame for the ship bombings as yet. What's going on.

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-egypt-emirates/egypt-condemns-actions-against-four-ships-near-uae-territorial-waters-idUSKCN1SI0NZ?il=0
"Egypt’s foreign ministry on Sunday condemned what the United Arab Emirates called an act of sabotage against four ships near the UAE’s territorial waters and said it stood by that country.
In a statement, the ministry said it “condemned all acts that would harm the national security of the UAE” and “stressed the solidarity of the Egyptian government and people with the UAE in confronting all the challenges it may face.”"

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | May 12, 2019 5:48:07 PM | 74

HW @69---Kh @63 answers your swamp question--

"Of course, Socialist Governments would do just fine on a "level playing field" but that has never been the case. They've always been treated with great derision, harassment; and with Economic Sanctions, Subterfuge, CIA agents provocateurs, pallets of money for opposition groups, false flag events, and "military engagement". "

I agree 100%

Posted by: arby | May 12, 2019 5:56:38 PM | 75

The passerby drive-by trill post would be more credible if the reality of the Soviet collapse would have been discussed. More specifically, that no one on either the Soviet or US (or European, China) side had any idea it was about to happen.
As it is, we do have some very clear problems which loony to the US situation as anything but rosy. I. Particular, a US deficit of $21t - which is 20%-25% of the world's GDP and growing at $1t+ a year with no turnaround in sight.
Yes, this is all dollars which can be printed etc to be repaid, but the consequence of doing so is a huge deferment in trust in the US, ita financial institutions, the dollar, etc.
The switch of the US from a massive trade deficit nation to one forced into austerity will be interesting.
The reality is also that the growing deficit is not being financed by the rest of the world anymore, meaning my description of the debt as a problem is shared at government level. Net foreign holdings of US debt has been basically flat since 2012 - this is a long period of time.

Posted by: C1ue | May 12, 2019 5:57:46 PM | 76

Central Banks Have Broken Capitalism
https://www.bloomberg.com/opinion/articles/2019-04-26/capitalism-is-broken-because-of-central-banks

Posted by: John Smith | May 12, 2019 5:59:35 PM | 77

And I would add to Kh's list the fact that the left generally is not predisposed to out and out violence. The right appears to have no qualms whatsoever with vicious violence.

Posted by: arby | May 12, 2019 6:00:22 PM | 78

@drivebytroll (Passerby) #2 -

"Do you know how many people in the Communist Block believed about the imminent collapse of the US? And do you know who collapsed instead? The USSR."

Please cite your sources. Thanks in advance.

Posted by: KC | May 12, 2019 6:04:02 PM | 79

#68 - " the US began rushing events this year instead of giving their plots and schemes time to mature."

I don't wish too cut too fine a line on this, but events were timed to Marduro's inauguration, which was the trigger for the constitutional interpretation invoked by Guaido. Planning for this specific scheme went back at least to the previous September. It would include putting Guaido in position to assume/claim executive power and lining up international support. The gambit was announced ahead of time by the Lima Group at a press conference in early January.

The ensuing panic and sense of urgency is a result of events not unfolding as planned, as it appears the schemers somehow believed there would be limited resistance to Guaido assuming the presidency. It appears that members of the Lima Group were misled as to popular support for the opposition, and may also have be led on as to support within the Venezuelan military.

Posted by: jayc | May 12, 2019 6:26:31 PM | 80

mulshines read on trump is braindead... pat like seems to like it...
Posted by: james | May 12, 2019 2:55:19 PM | 55

Mulshine has 'forgotten' that veteran multi-tasker, President turn-on-a-dime Trump, can keep his finger on 20 pulses, tweet, make up nicknames for ppl like Sleepy Joe and Pocahontas, help the Dems to dig a huge hole for themselves, and fine-tune his Iran, NK & Venezuela plans, all at the same time.
He thrives on "trouble" and Loving It.
During the campaign he announced that being POTUS, and running his businesses on the side, would be a snack.
He's unlikely to fire Bolton and/or Pompeo until they've outlived their usefulness as utterly predictable ideological time warps. He hasn't finished winding them up and strewing their paths with encouragement and Rose Petals. The fact that they're tone deaf, don't listen and believe all their own balderdash, helps a lot.

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | May 12, 2019 6:33:53 PM | 81

Trump’s Trade War is Already Over

"Let’s shift gears now and talk about what’s really going on.

Trump’s team would be fine with a trade deficit if China was still recycling that trade surplus into US Treasury bonds. They aren’t. The Chinese have held their stock of US debt between $1.1 and $1.25 trillion for two years now.

They are sending a lot of those dollars back out into the world to fund their massive Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). They are also using them to power swap arrangements with countries feeling the bite of Trump’s sanctions. Countries like Turkey, Pakistan and Iran, for examples."

Strategic Culture

Posted by: Bemildred | May 12, 2019 7:11:43 PM | 82

William Gruff @62
" it is the establishment and its corporate media that seems to be in a panic at the moment, and that is what I find curious. They are in a manic rush for aggression in all directions and there is really no obvious rational explanation for it."

Even ordinary people see it, not just dorks who post on political blogs. A co-worker who voted for Trump said to me last Friday (paraphrasing) "things are going off the rails and I was never this scared even during the cold war", and others I know have noticed that the propaganda is getting unbearable. I've talked to one co-worker who follows current events closely at some length on what is driving this and he sees it but is at a loss. It feels like Pre-WWI based on what I have read about that era.

A few other ideas:
1) Israel is freaked out about Iran at its doorstop and needs to act while Trump is President.
2) Fracking is not going a well as advertised and if so, that will be a big problem and we need to steal someone else's oil to make up for it.
3) We now have a gullible President surrounded by insane advisers, but that does not explain the media's behaviour (my comment yesterday re: MSNBC now rabidly pro-war).
4) Dan Rather being crucified for making a mistake I believe has had a chilling effect on liberal journalists. Likewise Candy Crowley has been sent to an undisclosed location after correcting Mitt Romney in the third debate re "act of terror," and is yet to return.

Posted by: Schmoe | May 12, 2019 7:12:18 PM | 83

On the question in 60 thru 74.. what the urgency in corporate media.. <= a problem unfolding in front of their eyes. Even war or bailout cannot get them out of failure this time, I think, no matter what the fake data says, small and consumer based business in America is declining rapidly, everywhere.. and in UK as well. I do not know how many lives in America are dependent upon government subsidy but my guess is over 50% of Americans need government help.

2ndly most Americans are very dissatisfied with the corruption in the government no matter the party or the person. and no one believes either the news or any of the politicians <= this is new since Bush. Obama was elected on the change ticket.

3rdly, Fracking is failing, its destroying the environment and LNG min. market price is too high to save the energy sectors; not only is there a global glut of oil, but there is strong ever growing Solar and Wind energy technology encroaching into the traditional oil based energy markets. the engines that use energy are using less to accomplish the purposes they were designed to do and robots are coming into every day.. so business needs to do what computers do, that is, keep getting more powerful and smaller.

4th opportunity is every where declining college grads are in high demand, but soon they need retraining and most looking for a new job are not finding that life long job instead they are accepting lower pay jobs or they are taking jobs with government.
The monopoly powered corporate monsters are raising their prices by reducing the quantities of the goods in the packages. inflation has been hidden at the dinner plate for now.

The immigration from the South of Mexico is increasing and many, many corporations and persons depend on that labor for survival.
I do not believe the economic problems are going away until the USA allows Americans to tool back up their industries and that will take years because the talent to design, build and operate those industries have disappeared into the fakeary of the MIC. ..

Pharmaceutical prices and hospital stays are rising in price and medical activities have become the only major non retail business left in America; its nearly 100% supported by government subsidy one way or another.. HUD is paying the rent for a very large, every growing number of persons in affordable housing. On the streets in nearly every town you see a proliferation of restaurants and other businesses of the types that people start from their own savings after all else has failed.

So this means fewer customers to buy the products that monopoly power (copyrights and patent dependent corporations) sell even before the impact of the Tariffs.. All is not well.. the local banks are marking time, as no one wants to borrow with war on the horizon. The last bit of savings has been spent, the well is dry.. I see this condition all along the East Coast, and in Washington State. I have not recently been to middle America.. ?
Unless Americans discover how to get around the copyrights and patents and privatized governmental resources that prevent them from competing, and unless the growing government backs off on regulatory control, especially in housing, competition in businesses will not exist meaning "America at its center" is, IMO, going to burst into oblivion .

Unlike Trump, I do not see the problem to be goods and services coming into America.. I see that the USA was used by the monopoly powered global corporations to deny American businesses and to be sure these businesses lost the know-how to compete. America must be able to competitively produce its own goods and services but it cannot IMO. To be sure there is a major difference between the USA and the average American, neither knows or respects the other.

The problem is not with the foreign competition, but instead the problem is "there are no competitors on the American team" and those who control the USA do not want Americans to compete. The competitors are not in the global corporations nor are they in national corporations, the true ingenuity is in home town America. Further, copyrights, patents and privatization have denied that ingenuity for so long it can no longer perform. The education system has been rendered virtually useless, the local banking system corrupted and made into an international weapon, the stock markets has been supported only by invasion into foreign places by war, regime change and corruption so what is left for Americans is nothing like what it used to be..

Capitalism is a very good system, but it depends for its success on an honest referee(the government). Unfortunately those in power used the government to make the rules so only their favored few could win, everyone else was made a customer spectator. Now the monopoly game is nearly over, and one guy owns all of the property so each roll of the dice brings the game closer to being over.
At least, this is my opinion

Posted by: snake | May 12, 2019 7:14:28 PM | 84

William Gruff @ 62, Jayc @ 66:

Your discussion on why the US appears to be rushing regime change in Venezuela might be missing one thing: the US needs to secure Venezuela's oil supplies for its own use in order to carry out other projects around the globe aimed at destabilising China's Belt Road Initiative which itself may be gathering more momentum (and bringing forward the day when the US finds itself in the splendid isolation it has always wanted through the backdoor of sanctioning everyone else) as more and more countries want a piece of the action BRI offers. These other projects also include destabilising Russia through it borders with Ukraine, Georgia and Central Asia. They are all likely to be inter-linked and all need to occur together, more or less, to keep the targeted nations distracted.

Also the motley-crew alliance of the pro-Israel lobby, fundamentalist Christian Zionists and their hangers-on and paid Congress stooges in Washington DC are not getting any younger, and are impatient that their efforts haven't brought the Messiah's arrival or return trip (depending on which set of misinterpreted religious beliefs they follow) any nearer but rather, farther away.

Of course as Jayc @ 80 says, the fact that events in Venezuela haven't transpired as they were supposed to have done, throwing out the neocon timetable and schedule of planned global events, has probably upset deluded planners who are now trying to speed up changes to get the Venezuela regime change project back on track. In doing this though, they risk making more mistakes and exposing their hand.

It's also important for Johnny Bat-boy Guano, or whatever MoA barflies want to call Guaido, to keep up the momentum for regime change to keep his followers focused on the end goal, however further into fantasy that continues to recede. Guano's usefulness to Leopoldo Lopez (now that he has escaped house arrest) and Washington is rapidly coming to an end. If he is not seen to be doing something, either Washington or his own followers will turn on him. Anyone willing to place bets on whether Guano will still be alive this time next year?

Posted by: Jen | May 12, 2019 7:22:42 PM | 85

@ Schmoe 83
) Fracking is not going a well as advertised and if so, that will be a big problem and we need to steal someone else's oil to make up for it.
You were smart in adding the "if so" because fracking is going well. I recently drove through the Permian region of Texas and it's gangbusters, lots of people and lots of equipment everywhere, and many "mancamps" (mostly RVs) to house the workers.

Posted by: Don Bacon | May 12, 2019 7:36:51 PM | 86

Posted by: William Gruff | May 12, 2019 5:12:23 PM | 68

Yes, I too sense some urgency. It may be that the Elites see their window of opportunity for Full Spectrum Dominance nearing its end as the Eurasian-centric Multi-Polar world is in the making. Perhaps they want to act during Trumps presidency (he is malleable) and are in the process of preparing a multiple theatre conflict in a last bid attempt. Hence, Venezuela's oil reserves are important to control if a campaign against Iran (via false flag sabotage acts like today's UAE event) is launched as it would disrupt oil distribution through the Gulf. In the end, the game is always about controlling resources and preventing competitors from accessing these.
"In G-O-D we trust". That is, Gold, Oil, Drugs..

Posted by: Lozion | May 12, 2019 7:39:55 PM | 87

@Don Bacon #86 -

I am from that part of Texas and it's a perpetual boom-bust-boom-bust economy that is dependent on the price of mainly oil, but also to some extent LNG, which often sits on top of the oil deposits (not in the types of deposits exploited by fracking though I don't think). In any case, if there is a war involving Iran or Venezuela, oil prices will continue to rise and they'll do just fine out in the Basin, but if prices drop, it becomes too expensive to pull oil from the Earth in that manner.

Speaking of - I have been told by colleagues that it's indeed booming right now - the burrito guy got rich over the past 4 years by putting his unlicensed, unpermitted trailer wherever these mancamps or fracking sites are and charging $5 for what I hear is a pretty good burrito. Also saw a story in the Wall Street Journal of all places about how a barber can get rich out there. Thing is the mancamps are there because it's 1) a transient workforce (same guys were in the Dakotas not long ago and 2) as the result of the boom, housing prices are through the roof (and it's not a very nice place to live, in my educated opinion, so that's saying something).

Here's that story: https://www.wsj.com/articles/in-this-oil-boom-town-even-a-barber-can-make-180-000-11551436210

Looks like other barbers are following the burrito man's lead: https://www.oaoa.com/community/article_2c26df84-d157-11e7-b8bd-477a07df567a.html

Sorry for the links, but I'm posting from a phone and it's not easy doing the HTML stuff from here.

Posted by: KC | May 12, 2019 8:00:16 PM | 88

#2:"Do you know how many people in the Communist Block believed about the imminent collapse of the US? And do you know who collapsed instead? The USSR."

How many was that then?
Some data, please. And documentation of the number of people who thought the USA was going to collapse.

According to my recent reading of Sovietologists, there was great anxiety and tension under Gorbachev, as he couldn't decide how to manage the economy. The republics were getting restive and demanding more and more independence (how else do you explain the rise of Yeltsin as the president of the Russian Republic?); many hard-liners wanted Gorbachev to crack down to stop his reforms from fracturing the country. I think there were many in the Soviet Union who feared the country's coming apart. Some of them wanted it; many of them didn't and feared the consequences.

Posted by: Really? | May 12, 2019 8:02:05 PM | 89

Gruff: "The Empire of Chaos is acting desperate for some reason."

Is it possible that this is all being driven by the thre psychopaths---Pompeo, Bolton, Abrams---who want a war fast? And not driven by those in charge (whoever they are, if not PBA) being desperate to make overwrought moves to head off something worse that they are aware of?

Posted by: Really? | May 12, 2019 8:06:53 PM | 90

That "sense of urgency" does have some limits, including Trump's pullback from the cornerstone Asia economic alliance, the breaking of NAFTA, and the alienation of most of Europe (not Poland), and his general insulting of almost everyone except Chairman Kim. No friends and a lot of enemies promotes the US downfall from world hegemony, give Trump that credit.

Posted by: Don Bacon | May 12, 2019 8:07:53 PM | 91

@ 86 Don Bacon

Posted by: Schmoe | May 12, 2019 8:12:47 PM | 92

@86 Don Bacon
I think "incomplete" is a better grade for fracking. A lot of ink has been split on rapid depletion rates due to sweet spots being picked over already and placing wells too close to each other.
https://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2019/05/the-shale-boom-is-about-to-go-bust.html#comments
There is a lot of oil there, but how much of it is economically viable absent a large spike in prices is open to debate.

Posted by: Schmoe | May 12, 2019 8:16:54 PM | 93

@ KC 88
Thanks for that on the Texas fracking scene, I think we might have seen the burrito man's trailer. My wife and I were knocked over by the whole scene, which she calls unbelievable, and we imagine (as you suggest) it's like other boom town events (but more than one town, and probably longer lasting) and suggestive of the old western gold rush days (in one's imagination). It was surely a vast sight to behold of tons of equipment and hundreds people, driving northwest from Midland. . .sign: $400 per week (to live in a small trailer).

Posted by: Don Bacon | May 12, 2019 8:20:11 PM | 94

@ Don Bacon

I believe it. We'll be passing close by in mid June, usually I can tell if there's a boom from the amount of traffic on I-10 (west to El Paso, east to San Antonio) at the junction with I-20 (which begins there and goes to Odessa, Midland Abiline and Dallas). If there's a ton of people out there. It's really remote. I know things are a-boomin' in Midland and SlowDeatha (a less than affectionate nickname we had for it growing up).

I think I'm a little bit too old, being in my 40s, but maybe not - to head out that way if I ever got desperate for work or even just wanted to do physical labor and be well compensated for it. But there are people making big bucks out there. I'm told it's mainly around Pecos right now, and believe it or not I've actually broken down on 20 between Pecos and I-10 and had to hitchhike to the nearest town, which was Toyah, an old abandoned railroad town. Pretty desolate and we were lucky someone picked us up...there's not even a rest stop with bathrooms anywhere nearby and it was 1998 or so, before people my age and income had cellular phones.

Posted by: KC | May 12, 2019 8:41:00 PM | 95

#89 - Really?

I asked them the same thing up-thread. I doubt we'll get an answer...sounds like more made up CIA propaganda from the Cold War. I'm sure that the Soviets were indeed playing up any economic issues in the west during that time, but I would doubt very seriously most people believed the US was on the verge of financial collapse (which we're a hair's breadth away from at the present) - not to mention nuclear war, which I'd bet we're also much closer to now than at many times during the Cold War.

Posted by: KC | May 12, 2019 8:44:19 PM | 96

https://thegrayzone.com/2019/05/09/mintpress-grayzone-journalists-us-blackout-siege-venezuelan-embassy-dc/
On going siege at DC Embassy of Venezuela
Power and water cut in violation of Vienna Convention

Posted by: WVW | May 12, 2019 8:52:05 PM | 97

KC | May 12, 2019 8:44:19 PM | 96

Communism was teaching that capitalism would collapse and that it was "scientifically proven", no idea if people believed that.

Posted by: T | May 12, 2019 8:54:24 PM | 98

@ KC 95
Yeah, Pecos. We got off I-20 at Midland and took 302 westward to Mentone bypassing Pecos then 285 north to Orla which took forever because there were blinking red lights at the four-way intersection at Orla, and everybody and his brother were trying to get through that intersection, one...at...a...time. It was a graphic bodily feeling of the immensity of life in this previously forgotten section of West Texas, now fully alive and congested because of some dead animals when there was a sea-reef here millions of years ago.
We saw a lot of parked vehicles along the way, BTW. I think if you sought a driving job you'd soon be rich. But avoid that Orla run until they put in proper lights!

Posted by: Don Bacon | May 12, 2019 8:59:14 PM | 99

re Collapse and the soviet union. There was an old 'Radek' joke to this effect:

Cde A "I have a new job. I sit in a tall watchtower on the western border of the USSR. When capitalism collapses I have to inform Moscow.

Cde B "Sounds good. What is the money like?"

Cde A "Oh, the pay is terrible but the great thing is that the position is permanent."

The point being, of course, that after years of false alarms and promises of the imminent fruits of victory people had grown very cynical about the long promised collapse of capitalism.

Posted by: bevin | May 12, 2019 9:01:24 PM | 100

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