Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
December 15, 2019

The MoA Week In Review - Open Thread 2019-74

Last week's posts at Moon of Alabama:

Related:
What have the US and protestors in Lebanon achieved over Iran and its allies? - Elijah Magnier
Intel: How Trump continues to restrict humanitarian trade with Iran
If Iran Falls, ISIS May Rise Again, Tom O'Connor, Newsweek

Related:
Washington Post’s Afghanistan Story Reveals Core Folly of American Defense Strategy - Matt Taibbi, Rolling Stone
At Least 23 Soldiers Killed in Insider Attack in Afghanistan - NYT

Related:
The Inspector General’s Report on 2016 FBI Spying Reveals a Scandal of Historic Magnitude: Not Only for the FBI but Also the U.S. Media - Glenn Greenwald, Intercept

Related:
Please Support Moon of Alabama

Related:
The pickle-fork issue affects some 5% of the 7,000 older 737 NG jets. Its repair is a costly affair.
Qantas Boeing 737 Crack Repairs Taking 3000 Man Hours Per Plane
Additionally all NG planes will also need new engine inlets and engine fan cowls.
Boeing Is Redesigning 7,000 Planes. It's Not What You Think.

Related:
The Ukrainian Anti-Corruption Bureau is a U.S. creation. It is therefore not astonishing to find that it is corrupt.

@kooleksiy 16:29 UTC · Dec 13, 2019
Director of Ukraine's National Anti-corruption Bureau Sytnyk will pay a ~$140 fine for "violation of restrictions on accepting gifts" [valued at ~$1 thousand in his case] - his lawyer stated today after Appellate Court ruling @dw_ukrainian reports www.dw.com/uk/
Maksym Eristavi @MaximEristavi - 9:50 UTC · Dec 14, 2019
Gut-wretching vid from yday Kyiv court hearing where a group of veterans tried for assassinating top Ukraine journalist Pavlo Sheremet. Their supporters bully, swear at and throw death threats at the prosecutors, their families & kids — right in the court.
Policemen do nothing

Related:
In Praise of Telling the Truth - Peter Hitchens, First Things
The Art of Doublespeak: Bellingcat and Mind Control - Edward Curtin, Off-Guardian

---
Other issues:

Bernie Sanders:

David Klion @DavidKlion - 4:16 UTC · Dec 14, 2019
The Federalist, the Washington Examiner, and Commentary have all tried to smear Bernie as an antisemite in the past few days. The ADL and all the other usual suspects haven't said a word, because they basically agree. It's an attack on the entire Jewish left and it cannot stand.

“Anyone to my left is an antisemite” - Jews as a Weapon: Coming to your election...soon! - Yasha Levine, Immigrants as weapons
Don’t let the smears that sank Corbyn tank Bernie Sanders - Asa Winstanley, Electronic Intifada
I drafted the definition of antisemitism. Rightwing Jews are weaponizing it - Kenneth Stern, Guardian

Korea:

Jeffrey Kaye @jeff_kaye - 6:29 UTC · 15 Dec 2019
Rare on paper, this free digital reproduction tells the story of how the US held up negotiations to end the Korean War, using POWs as anti-communist hostages and propaganda puppets until the prisoners at Koje island rebelled against the torture & abuse
The book “Koje Unscreened” includes copious quotations from an otherwise secret report by the International Committee of Red Cross about U.S. torture and murders of North Korean POWs, assisted by South Korean & Kuomintang guards. This is history US rulers do not want you to know.
Koje Unscreened (pdf)

Pamir:

Pamir Highway: the road on the roof of the world - Pepe Escobar, Asia Times
Cruising Pamir Highway, the heart of the Heartland - Pepe Escobar, Asia Times

Use as open thread ...

Posted by b on December 15, 2019 at 16:16 UTC | Permalink

Comments
next page »

Bernie needs to take the bull by the horns with the anti-semite charge. If one wishes to glean any lesson from what happen to Corbyn, appeasing the smears and their slingers will not work. It wasn't hard to see how the campaign agaisnt Corbyn, if successful, would be a mere trial run of what would be trotted out to take Bernie down. He's needs to make a big deal out of this, immediately, and show what a farcical notion it is.

Posted by: Don Wiscacho | Dec 15 2019 18:02 utc | 1

Matt Taibbi's article on Afghanistan is the perfect example of what kevin dooley terms the inept empire theory that is common among many lefties and right-wing antiwar types. It is helpful to go through it and demonstrate exactly what mistakes he makes.

First: the headline says the war in Afghanistan is "folly", assuming it serves no purpose to the ruling class. Next, in the subheader, Taibbi makes a mistake that he repeats throughout the article: The use of the word 'we'. This is, as Michael Parenti points out, substituting a nation-based analysis instead of a class-based one. Taibbi constantly does this throughout the article "our presence", "our policies" what "we" keep on doing. However this is not correct. The American ruling class chose these policies. I and many of my fellow Americans oppose them. This is not "our" war.

Secondly, Taibbi keeps making the bumbling empire mistake in assuming that the outcomes of these policies are the result of incompetents. For example:"You will end up spending $3 million a day to get nothing done" Well I'm sure something got done, namely many companies made a nice profit from this $3 million a day. Another example: "We ended up spending $9 billion on opium eradication and for our trouble massively increased opium production: Afghanistan is now where 82 percent of the world’s opium is grown." We know America has a history of using drug money to fund itself and its allies, as Gary Webb describes in South America, and Alfred McCoy in Southeast Asia. So why does Taibbi assume that this increased opium production is a failed policy? Afghanistan has a very important geostrategic position; it is close to Russia, China, Pakistan, Iran, and India. It is also home to some of the largest mineral resources in the world. Taibbi provides a good example of how one can oppose a war while being completely ignorant of the underlying dynamics at play.

Posted by: shaun | Dec 15 2019 18:05 utc | 2

Who is the UK?

British Workers - class composition of the UK

Land and the rentier economy

From a peak of 350,000 permanent dwellings constructed per annum in the late 1960s, construction activity has fallen to around 150,000 units per year. Land now accounts for 70 per cent of a house sale price. In the 1930s it was 2 per cent.

What happened? When Britain’s post-war housebuilding boom began, it was based on cheap land. As the book, The Land Question by Daniel Bentley of thinktank Civitas, sets out, the 1947 Town and Country Planning Act under Clement Attlee’s government allowed local authorities to acquire land for development at “existing use value”. The unserviced land cost component for homes in Harlow and Milton Keynes was just 1% of housing costs at the time.

But landowners rebelled and Harold Macmillan’s Conservative government introduced the 1961 Land Compensation Act. Henceforth, landowners were to be paid the value of the land, including any “hope value”, when developed. Today a hectare of land is worth 100 times more when used for housing rather than farming. Yet when an council grants planning permission, all the value goes to the landowner, not the public. Bentley says landowners pocketed £9bn in profit from land they sold for new housing in 2014-15. Major infrastructure projects such as Crossrail 2 and the Bakerloo tube line extension are estimated to cost the public purse £36bn. Landowners, meanwhile, will pocket £87bn from increased land values nearby. Some externalities!

[...]

Thus both the early 19th century political economists of industrial capital and Marx agreed on the need to nationalise land – indeed, it is in the Communist Manifesto But it has not happened. Instead, private ownership has increased and through inheritance has ensured the continuation of the same ruling elites for centuries. A recent study by two economists at the Bank of Italy found that the wealthiest families in Florence today are descended from the wealthiest families of Florence nearly 600 years ago! So the rise of merchant capitalism in the city states of Italy and then the expansion of industrial capitalism and now finance capital made little or no difference to who owned the wealth. When, in 1873, the government published the Return of Owners of Land, the most comprehensive survey of British land distribution since the Domesday Book, it came as no surprise that almost all the top hundred landowners were also members of the House of Lords. Just as predictably, 30 per cent of today’s Tory MPs are landlords.

Posted by: vk | Dec 15 2019 18:07 utc | 3

It's ominous that one of the main longstanding contentions of the neo-Nazis - that all Jews are Zionist agents and therefore one can't separate anti-Zionism from anti-jewishness as such - has become the mainstream position on the Jews. Sure, at the moment it's being pushed by the Zionists in the name of aggrandizing the Zionist state. But once the idea is ingrained, it will easily be flipped to the opposite, more historically conventional anti-Jewish use.

Same for the mainstream trend which wants to define Jews as a special nationality, as in Trump's executive order. Whether or not this EO has any immediate practical effect in itself, its propaganda effect will be more far-reaching.

Although the neoliberal system is not classically fascist (I always say fascism and neoliberalism are two different species of the same genus), it contains fascist undercurrents which capitalism will take up if it has to. All this preparation for anti-semitic propaganda and policy is one of them.

Posted by: Russ | Dec 15 2019 18:09 utc | 4

ominous that one of the main longstanding contentions of the neo-Nazis - that all Jews are Zionist agents and therefore one can't separate anti-Zionism from anti-Jewishness as such - has become the mainstream position on the Jews. Sure, at the moment it's being pushed by the Zionists in the name of aggrandizing the Zionist state. russ @4 <=two things:
1. where did you get the idea that Nazi considered all Jews to be Zionist? AFAICT it is the Muslims that adopted that stance? Can you support that claim with some kind of reference? 2) I think there is something much more treacherous in trying to merge Zionism with either members of the Jewish race or adherents to the religious claims of the Jewish religious establishments. Such a merger serves to cover for massive, undeniable frauds perpetrated over centuries by the groups that became supporters of or that joined the Zionist (while it is true in America at least, many of the Zionist were Jewish, millions of Christian Zionists exist in America today and most of them are not Jewish ). The Zionist manipulated and used the masses of Jewish people; herded them here and there to suit the economic and hegemonic purpose of the Zionist. If the Zionist can hide behind the skirts of the Jews, and garnish the christian as well as the members of the Jewish race to their cause; the Zionist will allowed to continue to use their propaganda to exploit humanity look

Posted by: snake | Dec 15 2019 19:10 utc | 5

Re Shaun @ 2

"Taibbi provides a good example of how one can oppose a war while being completely ignorant of the underlying dynamics at play."
Agreed . . . maybe the cause has something to do with The Art of Doublespeak: Bellingcat and Mind Control

Posted by: Perimetr | Dec 15 2019 19:45 utc | 6

FYI--FYI

Putin's Annual Q&A will commence the 19th at noon Moscow time, with additional broadcast info and other trivia available at link.

Posted by: karlof1 | Dec 15 2019 19:54 utc | 7

@ shaun | Dec 15 2019 18:05 utc | 2

Absolutely agree. The trillion dollar "mistakes" are no mistakes. They have very successfully transferred huge amounts of money to all shades of war criminals and swamp critters.

Similarly, I have always maintained that Bush the Lesser's "Mission Accomplished" proclamation was no bumbling mistake. The mission was indeed accomplished - the mission of destroying a strong Arab state that could pose a danger to Israel.

Posted by: Nathan Mulcahy | Dec 15 2019 20:34 utc | 8

I think we have been looking at russiagate from the wrong angle
all along. It is actually all those russians who have been meeting
with their american counterparts that are american agents who were
colluding with the americans to interfere in russian politics. Yeah,
that's it, and it is actually Putin who is the Manchurian agent rather
than Trump. The CIA has video of Putin getting a bj from Victoria Nuland
while he was helping her give out cookies to the nazies in Maiden Square.
Putin does whatever the US wants, like letting Israel bomb Syria at will, letting
the nazies run amok in Uraine, poisoning the Skripals, shooting down MH17, poisoning
russian athletes by spiking their food with PEDS, hating on the fags and dykes,
and poking fun at the munchkin Greta. Unbeknownst to many is that Greta is also
a sleeper agent. Putin has clandestine meetings with her at Dunkin Donuts to plot
with her how to destroy Russia. Here's the clincher: Putin sings Fats Domino songs.
Pay special attention to Putin when he sings a Fats Domino song because it signals
that his manchurian programing has been triggered and he is about to launch a cruise
missile at the bundestag to start WWIII. The last time he sang Blueberry Hill the president
of Poland died in a plane crash, that's how sinister it is. Also, Putin sneaks out of
the Kremlin late at night to eat at McDonalds where he colludes with The Big Macs and
the Large French Fries to become fat and ugly and splotchy like the Americans. Lastly,
Putin eats his glyphosate wheaties that he gets the hookers who peed on Trump to smuggle
in from the US while he watches reruns of Leave it to Beaver and I Love Lucy. What more
proof do you need?

Posted by: evilempire | Dec 15 2019 20:51 utc | 9

this is only the beginning of the McCarthyite witchhunt purge of Palestinian sympathy in the UK. Jess Phillips will get huge support and will win the leadership. Blairite power will be brought to bear and pro-Israeli sentiments will be the only ones allowed in the Labour party. Brutal exclusions will follow in the Jackie Walker, Chris Williamson vein. The UK is facing a significant increase in pro-Israeli propaganda in all mainstream parties.

Posted by: aniteleya | Dec 15 2019 21:21 utc | 10

Asset stripping the UK begins with NHS

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Dec 15 2019 21:29 utc | 11

shaun | Dec 15 2019 18:05 utc

I think that Taibbi is not born yesterday, and what you call "mistakes" is a valid choice of perspective and rhetoric.

First, consider "we". There was an joke/adage in my part of Europe in old days "What is cognac? It is a beverage that the working class drinks through the mouths of its representatives." People who commit follies from "our" point of view are servants of the people duly elected by the people (or recruited by the duly elected representatives). Nuland and Clinton were appointed by duly elected Obama (I still have a T-shirt commemorating my donation to his campaign) who was reelected (without my donation), etc. etc.

It is said, yea, elected, but only because people are manipulated. Yet people are well aware that most of the transactions in which they are participating have a degree of manipulation. For example, when Trump praised how he provided effective relieve to "our nukes [that] were tired" described them as "now in tip-top shape". This is a rather original way of talking about nuclear weapons, but absolutely expected from a salesman of a property with all visible defects repaired or painted over and untold horror of hidden defects. If people do not pay attention or tolerate it, it is not because of being deprived of access to relevant information. EVERYONE can read MoonOfAlabama, both the website and the Twitter.

Concerning Afghanistan, anybody could figure out the lack of good news stemming from the progress of the allied mission. And the official cost of 4 billions per month was not exactly hidden. So "we" cannot simply blame "them", our representatives. "We" tolerate that they make their share of grubby profits, some directly from those 4 billions dollar per month, some indirectly from the web of sinecures of MIC (academic-military complex etc.).

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Dec 15 2019 21:50 utc | 12

evilempire ---hahahahhaahahhahahahahahhahahahahaha breathtakingly brilliant

Posted by: Miss Lacy | Dec 15 2019 22:41 utc | 13

Miss Lacy, there's more in the evilempire Dossier. I've been
offering it to the Russian deep state for the big $$$ but no
takers so far. I can offer it to you for a discount.

Posted by: evilempire | Dec 15 2019 23:09 utc | 14

As reported back on the 11th when the Evil Outlaw US Empire's Senate Foreign Relations Committee forwarded a bill to the entire Senate that seeks to lay illegal sanctions on Turkey, Turkey replied that it would close Incirlik and an associated radar station at Kurecik. Today, it repeated that promise, this one delivered by Erdogan:

"It is important for both sides that the US does not take irrevocable measures… Turkey will, of course, respond to any US sanctions. If needed, we will close both Incirlik and Kurecik."

As previously discussed, the S-400 purchase was done to protect Turkish airspace from NATO, specifically Greek warplanes, given the great tension surrounding Cyprus, which the Zionists just stuck their nose into and had their naval vessel chased from the area by the Turkish navy. Also contributing is Turkish support for the GNA in Libya.

Lots of eyes are looking at Lebanon and Iran as ignition points for the next war. I suggest looking at Cyprus and the myriad players involved there, many with a longstanding loathing of the others.

Posted by: karlof1 | Dec 15 2019 23:37 utc | 15

shaun @2

Many seem to make this 'mistake' because they buy into the Democracy Works! propaganda that says USA is a democracy and your vote counts. It may be democratic on a local level but anything nation ... not so much. And, IMO the Presidency is too important to the Empire to allow a democratic choice at all.

Another annoying misconception that is pushed is that USA elites are too divided into 'factions' to be effective. But what we are allowed to see is not likely to be anything more than predictable and fairly inconsequential squabbling. IMO the most important policy is made at the highest levels where there is virtually complete agreement on all but a few details.

Mass media is not allowed to portray a class-based analysis and Deep State-led Empire unless it is to bash socialism as giving free stuff to the lazy or hagiography of former Presidents like we see with GW Bush who is now friends with Ellen and Michele Obama. Awww...

!!

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Dec 16 2019 0:09 utc | 16

Shaun @ 2:
Another article by Kit Knightly at the Off-Guardian goes to the heart of the point I see you making:
https://off-guardian.org/2019/12/15/the-afghanistan-papers-deep-state-narrative-management/

It's a bit like calling 9/11 an intelligence failure. First, identify the actual measure of success against which this outcome should really be judged...

An excerpt:
"Here’s the real “secret history” of the Afganistan war: It wasn’t a failure, it was a success. In every facet, on every front, Afghanistan is exactly what America needed it to be. They dripfeed in the blood of young Americans, they destroy 100,000s of Afghan lives, and they reap the rewards they always intended to reap:
The permanent slow-simmer conflict gives them an excuse to keep thousands of US military personnel in a country which borders Iran, Pakistan AND China. (Not to mention a host of ex-Soviet states).
It keeps military expenditure nice and high, so Congressman, ex-generals and everyone else on the boards of Boeing or Lockheed Martin get great big bonuses every year.
They have sole access to the rare-Earth elements and other vital metals in the Afghan mountains. Lithium, most importantly of all.
They have control of the world’s opium industry. A vital cog in the relations of the US intelligence agencies, and organised crime. It’s essentially reverse money-laundering – turning tax-payer funds into dark money that can be spent hiring mercenaries, organising assassinations, arranging coups…or simply be stolen.
They have access to all the “radicalised” young men they could ever want. A little Jihadi farm, where “terrorists” can be named, trained and sent off to fight proxy wars in Syria, or spread fear and chaos in the West."

Posted by: Paul Damascene | Dec 16 2019 0:29 utc | 17

The Bogus Legend of Paul Volcker

Before Carter became President in 1977, Nixon had ordered the Fed to get rid of the effects of oil and food in the Consumer Price Index. The result was the fake number known as “core inflation,” minus oil and food. In his interest rate actions after October, 1979 Volcker never mentioned the true inflation came from David Rockefeller’s machinations in the 1970’s with OPEC. Instead he argued the population’s rising living standard was the problem. In defending his controversial monetary shock therapy, Volcker notably told the New York Times’ David McNally, “The American standard of living must decline.”

Posted by: vk | Dec 16 2019 0:43 utc | 18

This b recommends at his Twitter, saying "Some interesting and quite believable claims in this thread …"

Rudy Giuliani:

"Budapest | Kiev | Vienna

"After hundreds of hours & months of research, I have garnered witnesses & documents which reveal the truth behind this impeachment, which includes NO wrongdoing by @realDonaldTrump.

"These threads only touch the surface. Read & watch all. More to come."

The following tweet:

"Evidence revealed that corruption in 2016 was so extensive it was POTUS’s DUTY to ask for US-Ukraine investigation.

"Impeachment is part of Dem cover-up.

"Extortion, bribery & money laundering goes beyond Biden’s.

"Also, DNC collusion w/ Ukraine to destroy candidate Trump."

Need to separate the partisan chaff from the genuine evidence, but IMO b's correct that there's more than a few things here that will stick. One political cartoon in the thread comments is beyond apt.

Posted by: karlof1 | Dec 16 2019 0:47 utc | 19

vk @18--

Paul Volker destroyed my father's business and thousands of others. As you see, he played a very key role in escalating the Neoliberal hollowing out of the USA. Not only did living standards decline, many people died too young, my father included, thanks to Volker's work.

Posted by: karlof1 | Dec 16 2019 0:55 utc | 20

Evilempire #9
As hilarious as your post is, it may be closer to reality them you think (or at least more realistic then the blatantly dishonest “Russiagate”
Or “Trump fights muh Deep state” theories), considering the disheartening fact that their is massive U$ infiltration of the Russian government, using the Zionist Oligarchs who seized control of Russia’s industry in 1991 (research PROJECT HAMMER, which will simultaneously explain how the Eastern Bloc collapsed and what really happened on 911) and their good goys like Medvedev. Sadly, even though Putin has tried his best to root out the worst of these people (ie. the guy who tried to sell of Russia’s state-owned oil company to Exxon Mobil), and has done more then any other major world leader to oppose U$ imperialism (ie. annexing Crimea and saving Assad), this will probably not be enough to save Russia once he’s gone in 2024 considering how much of Russia’s Economy is still run by Zionist oligarchs and how infiltrated the Russian government is infiltrated by Zionist/U$ agents (ie. Medvedev and company). On top of this Putin himself has made some critical mistakes due to his Naive personality, especially his falling for Trumps phoney reset (Trumps policies towards Russia have been harsher then any president since Pappi Bush) and in the aftermath of that flop, running into the arms of “Red” China’s fake belt and Road which will be used to get Russia completely dependent on the biggest U$ satellite (“Red” China which is in reality a Neoliberal hellhole that is naught and paid for by Wall Street, and dropped any pretension of being Socialist once the Shanghai Stock exchange opened in 1990), which will proceed to backstab Russia at their next moment of weakness.

Posted by: 18481917 | Dec 16 2019 1:01 utc | 21

@ Posted by: karlof1 | Dec 16 2019 0:47 utc | 19 with the Rudi tweet and follow on tweets in response

I am so glad I don't do that tweet shit but glad it is available. I was struck by all those responding that have their fingers in their ears and are screaming about how wonderful the Dems are and how bad Rudi is....one wonders how they can type at the same time.....grin

The brainwashing runs deep in America and the West in general......GOT FAITH?

Maybe the house of cards will fall soon and humanity can pick up the pieces and evolve.


Posted by: psychohistorian | Dec 16 2019 1:04 utc | 22

Last Thursday/Friday the US Fed posted a report of their end of year backstopping of the private finance world that I have not shared with fellow MoA barflies until now. Below is a link to a ZH article that lays out the details but I will provide some quotes for those that don't want to read all about the latest NOT QE4 or ongoing raping of the American public

It's D-Day For The Repo Market: On Monday $100 Billion In Liquidity Will Be Drained - What Happens Next?

The take away quotes
"
.....the Fed promised to inject no less than $500 billion in the next 4 weeks to avert a catastrophic freeze in the repo market as we approach the year end "turn", which would consist not only of a continuation of the Fed's T-Bill POMO, but also a massive injection of nearly $500 billion in overnight and term repos in the coming days.
......
This also means that by Jan 14, the Fed's balance sheet would have grown by a cumulative $365BN in "temporary" repos, and together with the expanded overnight repos, and the $60BN in monthly TBill purchases, and by mid-January, the Fed's balance sheet, currently at $4.066 trillion, will surpass its all time high of $4.5 trillion!
...........
In any case, when looking at tomorrow's massive $100 billion liquidity drain, the repo market should be able to digest it without a spike in the G/C repo rate now that the Fed has effectively backstopped any and all year-end liquidity needs. If, however, the first repo prints come in elevated: at 2% or higher, it will mean that not even the Fed's half a trillion dollar liquidity injection was enough, and that Pozsar's fire and brimstone forecast is starting to come true.
"

The Pozar guy being quoted used to work for the US Fed, designed/set up the initial Fed REPO market and is now forecasting that things might blow up before the end of the year.

As I wrote at the end of my last comment

Maybe the house of cards will fall soon and humanity can pick up the pieces and evolve.


Posted by: psychohistorian | Dec 16 2019 1:33 utc | 23

Posted by: 18481917 | Dec 16 2019 1:01 utc | 21

>> On top of this Putin himself has made some critical mistakes due to his Naive personality, especially his falling for Trumps phoney reset (Trumps policies towards Russia have been harsher then any president since Pappi Bush) and in the aftermath of that flop, running into the arms of “Red” China’s fake belt and Road which will be used to get Russia completely dependent on the biggest U$ satellite

I don't agree that China is pro-US, with tome China will grow and the US will diminish, BRI will leads towards that, but i do agree that Trump has been the most anti-russian president since the 80s. Be objective. Do not look at what they say, look at what they do, the maxim says. Defacto, Trump has been far more aggressive and hostile to Russia than Obama. And he made everything possible to increase military budgets.

https://caitlinjohnstone.com/2019/11/18/25-times-trump-has-been-dangerously-hawkish-on-russia/

She also failed to mention that Trump activated Second Fleet in the Atlantic (that Obama actually disabled) for Russia containment.

Trump is just a military puppet seeking to prolong the US Empire on the cheap. That is - no more nation building, and let others pay for propping up the US empire.

Posted by: Passer by | Dec 16 2019 1:39 utc | 24

Reset with Russia was Obama's policy.

Posted by: lysias | Dec 16 2019 1:46 utc | 25

@ Posted by: lysias | Dec 16 2019 1:46 utc | 25 and Posted by: Passer by | Dec 16 2019 1:39 utc | 24 writing about who was instrumental in being negative towards Russia.

It was during Obama's term that Russia changed the trajectory of the war in Syria.

But lets get real, there is only one "Party" in America, the private finance/money party and both Obama and Trump are/were puppets for it. And those folks have know for some time about the integration of China/Russia geopolitical views so the policy has been "consistent" for probably a decade or more.

Posted by: psychohistorian | Dec 16 2019 2:03 utc | 26

karlof1 @19

Anyone relying on Rudy is likely to be disappointed.

1) He's under investigation himself (for Ukraine-related corruption!):

Five things to know about arrest of Giuliani associates

Rudy Giuliani Says He Received $500K From Indicted Associates.

2) He's done everything he could do to join the swamp that Trump claims to want to drain (via various businesses that use his government connections).

3) And there's much more evidence that he's a creep, such as his having been divorced three times; his failure (as a mayor and former prosecutor) to protect 9-11 workers and to push for a proper 9-11 investigation; and more.

!!

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Dec 16 2019 2:58 utc | 27

thanks for the week of news b.. i enjoyed the pepe escobar articles on the bottom on the pamir hwy...

@ 2 shaun.. i share @ 12 piotr's view on this.. taibbi is no fool.. if he was to word it literally, it would obviously be different, but then he would be viewed as much more radical then he presently is..

@3 vk... thanks for that.. really interesting..

@ 6 Perimetr.. your link doesn't work..

@ 17 paul.. good info in the link, and i like your quote - "it's a bit like calling 9/11 an intelligence failure." right..

speaking of reporters, or investigative journalists reporting, do read the link b provided in the previous article on the opcw and the fellow from newsweek who was let go - tareq haddad.. Lies, Newsweek and Control of the Media Narrative: First-Hand Account

b commented on this link by saying - "The piece is remarkable for what it provides on the working process in today's media."

Posted by: james | Dec 16 2019 2:58 utc | 28

evilempire

I nominate you for Bellingen sincere journalism award. You can collect your scoop of icecream curd at the exit.

Loved it.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Dec 16 2019 3:27 utc | 29

snake #5

Thank you. It is pure evil to conflate Jewishness by accident of birth or indoctrinated religion with Zionism. Evil is the mission of Trump and all fools who support this evil declaration. I reject being called infidel or atheist or whatever by any religious believer or indoctrinated person.

Trump has gone full fascist along with his Zionist and pentecostal supporters.

Give me freedom from these imbeciles.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Dec 16 2019 3:35 utc | 30

jackrabbit #27

I just hope that Rudi gets to shoot first and accurate.

I share you low trust in this gold toothed rat.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Dec 16 2019 3:39 utc | 31

psychohistorian @ 23

The Fed can create whatever digital currency it needs whenever it needs it. The issue with repos is a confidence issue: if there's insufficient liquidity in the daily overnight US$4-5 trillion repo market it is likely because the banks with liquidity don't trust the banks that need it overnight to pay it back the next day. The original tell back in Sept '19 was the precipitous rise in overnight repo interest rates beyond the rates that normally prevail.

This is a confidence game in every sense of the word.

The pension funds and insurance companies in the EU who can't tolerate negative interest rates in the EU are bringing their liquidity to the US to earn a meager if positive return. Listen to Gundlach @ 22:05 and @ 42:17 when he speaks about negative interest rates leading to sustained large capital flow to NA. This is a major factor in the rise to record highs in the NA equity markets in spite of poor economic conditions in the US (see https://wolfstreet.com/ for a myriad of stats). The US is the go to horse in the global glue factory, which is why the $US will likely appreciate in 2020 against most other currencies as the demand for $US rises to escape poor returns elsewhere.

It appears it's the EU banking system that's on the ropes and the rest of the Global Systemically Important Financial Institutions, i.e., the central banks' broker dealers, the too-big-to-fail-too-big-to-jail banks that launder the drug/sanction money circulating in massive amounts, don't trust the EU banks.

The problem that won't speak its name appears to be the EU financial end game coming into clear view in 2020.

Posted by: pogohere | Dec 16 2019 6:00 utc | 32

Posted by: snake | Dec 15 2019 19:10 utc | 5

"where did you get the idea that Nazi considered all Jews to be Zionist?"

From the history of antisemitism, where else? Antisemites had already long been touting a Jewish world conspiracy by the time of the 1897 Zionist Conference. They seized on this as proof of this conspiracy, and on the subsequent forged "Protocols of Zion" as further proof. It continued from there, and the establishment of the Zionist state is taken as the ultimate proof of this conspiracy with Western governments being complicit.

Are you trying to whitewash the Nazis while smearing the Muslims? I can't imagine why anyone's thanking you for that.

Posted by: Russ | Dec 16 2019 6:15 utc | 33

@ pogohere in # 32 who wrote in response to my US Fed REPO status comment
"
The US is the go to horse in the global glue factory, which is why the $US will likely appreciate in 2020 against most other currencies as the demand for $US rises to escape poor returns elsewhere.
"

I read recently that foreign purchase of US Treasuries has fallen for the past 4 years. I would suggest $US appreciation is linked to the BIS Forex manipulation along with negative interest rates in the countries you mentioned.

It is not just a confidence issue with the major banks but also with the 2nd tier players that are all trying to get their over leveraged suck on the teat of positive return.....profit for the God of Mammon acolytes has become the anti-humanistic reason for our species existence.

If we had global public finance all these God of Mammon acolyte folks would have to find real jobs.

Posted by: psychohistorian | Dec 16 2019 6:38 utc | 34

OOPs on my post #29

Should be:
evilempire

I nominate you for Bellingcat sincere journalism award. You can collect your scoop of icecream curd at the exit.

Loved it.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Dec 16 2019 3:27 utc | 29

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Dec 16 2019 6:50 utc | 35

Psychohistorian @ 34, Pogohere has it right and sounds to be in accordance with Martin Armstrong. We Europeans need our pensions and these God of Mammon types manage them for us. If the US is where the returns are that is where capital flows to. Has anyone got the skinny on what Armstrong’s report is saying about the Repo Crisis and the anticipated collapse of Deutsche Bank. Being a poor pensioner I can’t afford a subscription but I’d be fascinated to know what it says. From what I can glean from Armstrong’s public blog the knock on effects will be serious, 40 to 50% loss of capital across the board. b I trust your finances have nothing to do with DB!

Posted by: Phil E | Dec 16 2019 8:03 utc | 36

I liked the article by Hitchens ('In Praise of Telling the Truth') linked to from the MOA site. Disappointing, though, to find it on the First Times website - this seems to be one of those 'progressive' outlets that's obsessed with blaming the whole mess we're in on gay people and (particularly) trans people. Really? Why are we still critical of what grown adults do with their genitals or who they choose to sleep with...isn't that their decision? Isn't the truth that if it wasn't for those were different, who saw the world in a different way, who questioned, who challenged that we'd all still be in caves...

https://richardhennerley.com/2019/12/16/heres-to-the-freaks-heres-to-the-future/


Posted by: Richard | Dec 16 2019 10:37 utc | 37

Russ @ 33 whitewash the Nazis while smearing the Muslims? really I don't know how to answer that question? AFAICT the Nazis in Germany were not bad guys.. the Nazis were just the government in a nation targeted by the oil guys and their bankers because Germany was taking their thunder and out producing the industries of the western oil and bankers guys, and making new colonies about the world.. and because if Germany had ever hooked up with Russia all western bets were off and because before wwI, Germany was highly integrated with, and very well thought of by the Ottoman empire (even building for the Ottoman a RR to transport the Ottoman oil to markets) and because the western oil and bankers guys wanted that Ottoman owned oil and the western oil and bankers guys wanted German competition out of the picture so the western oil and banker guys installed in the USA a propaganda monster and a banking monster and used those monsters and the rule of law to push the Americans into supplying the force that was used to herd the Eastern Jews into the Ottoman Empire in order to allow the western oil and banker guys to take the oil from the Ottoman and in order to remove Germany and keep Germany from competing in the global economy.
Probably I should have attributed the origin of Zionism as reflective of intentions reflective of greed to the Ottomans, not the Muslims it was the Ottoman that first felt the impact of Zionism. What happened in Wilhelm's Germany was forced on Germany.. what happened in Hitler's Germany was forced on Germany.. The difference between the German Governments and the people governed by the German Governments is the same as the difference between the people governed by the British Government and the people governed by the American Government.
Humanity has no say under the top down nation state system. What these top down governments say and do<= never reflects what the governed people want, but always reflects what the propaganda says the governed want. What those who win elections say they will do, never reflects in their actions; instead accomplishments and effort of sitting politicians are targeted to satisfy the deep dark well hidden agendas developed by the Global Zionist. It is the Zionist, not the Jews, not the banks, not the corporations, not the poor man on the park bench, not even the gods, that run the world. Until now, the humanity has allowed the Zionist to run the world, and until 1897 there was no way to identify them into a single group. Most people just are not interested in telling everyone else how to live, or to make other people into private property slaves, or chase for profit that which is in someone else's back yard, most humans just want to live their short 80 years or so in relative peace and comfort.

If you can shed some explanatory light on your question.. it would be helpful. Thanks for the reply..

Posted by: snake | Dec 16 2019 10:46 utc | 38

U.S. economy shakes free of recession fears in striking turnaround since August

The author singles out low interest rates and the possible trade deal with China as the main factors for this alleged recession-avoidance.

Well, she's wrong, 100% wrong. Her argument sounds even more absurd when you realize the trade deal has only now being seriously negotiated and is not in fact done yet(and not "since August") and that the USA's interest rates have been essentially zero or even in negative territory in real terms since 2009.

The reason the USA still registers relatively high GDP growths (in relation to its First World vassals) is that it is the financial superpower. The "real economy" in the USA has been in full stagnation or recession for years now, but Wall Street keeps beating records after records. That means the USA is suffering a problem of valorisation, i.e. a crisis of capitalism.

The USA will suffer a major recession soon. Prediction from the real experts forsee it most probable in 2020-2022. The American elite clearly knows that, and is doing everything in their reach to avoid that, so this monumental effort can delay it by some years - but it will come.

Posted by: vk | Dec 16 2019 11:36 utc | 39

@ Posted by: Russ | Dec 16 2019 6:15 utc | 33

Zionism was a movement born in Europe during the end of the 19th Century, whose objective was to found a Jewish nation-State.

At the beginning, it was kind of a well-intentioned movement: there were a lot of locations discussed for the foundation of this new country, all of them uninhabited land (from empty portion of land in Africa to a piece of Patagonia).

In the 1930s, many Zionist bigwigs indeed supported the Nazis: their rationalization was that the Nazi threat would push their cause both because Hitler would expel all of the Jews from Germany and because that would trigger more funds to their cause. It's important to highlight that the Holocaust per se was an improvisation made during WWII: the original plan was to deport, not kill, the German Jewish population.

Posted by: vk | Dec 16 2019 11:41 utc | 40

to pogo here There's also the whiff of some very over levered hedge funds (who also have access to repo bucks) Remember LTCM? Love yr moniker.

Posted by: Miss Lacy | Dec 16 2019 12:42 utc | 41

uncle tungsten @11

The NHS is the ONLY remaining publicly owned asset in the UK after the Snatcherite govt of the 1980s sold off all the rest of the publicly owned essential services (water, gas, electricity, rail, bus, education, home help/nursing services, [council. i.e. social] housing) for pennies to anyone willing to profit from this garage sale of the people's family silver. Thus the local bourgeoisie, multinational companies harbored abroad, European (largely German and French) transportation companies (themselves publicly funded, ironically enough) profited, while the services provided diminished as they became more expensive.

And the NHS itself has been slowly, deliberately undermined from the beginning of the Snatcher's govt. It was *always* hated by the Tory party and the ruling elites/aristos. BUT because the bulk of the Tory voting vox populi liked the NHS, Snatcher and her crew knew that the destruction had to be indirect, couldn't be full-frontal. So they started by establishing a big bureaucracy - that the NHS hadn't had before - thus draining off a sizable proportion of the NHS's funding that previously had gone toward its program of medical care. Then they started to set annual limits per patient to the sums paid to GPs while at the same time allowing them to retain and spend as they chose on their surgeries/clinics any per annum "left-over" sums.

They also began to demand that hospitals NOT "lose" money - a concept completely at odds with the NHS's praxis and concept. The whole idea of profit/loss having *nothing* to do with its underlying, foundational ethos.

The intention was to seriously reduce the faith and trust that the Tory vox populi had in the NHS and turn them from their support of it.

Posted by: AnneR | Dec 16 2019 13:25 utc | 42

the nazis could have deported them, instead they deported jews from across europe to concentration camps.
from wiki--
The European Jews were targeted for extermination as part of a larger event during the Holocaust era, usually defined as beginning in January 1933,[8] in which Germany and its collaborators persecuted and murdered other groups, including Slavs (chiefly ethnic Poles, Soviet citizens, and Soviet prisoners of war), the Roma, the "incurably sick", political and religious dissenters, and gay men.[d] The death toll of these groups is thought to rise to 11 million.[

Posted by: pretzelattack | Dec 16 2019 14:28 utc | 43

Fires Rage in Canada as Professor Attacks the Myth of Holodomor

If such remarks were made in most nations today, it wouldn’t be such a big deal (as only 16 nations have chosen to recognize this event as an act of genocide rather than the tragic act of nature which MacDonald and countless eminent scholars maintain.)

Canada is not however “most nations”, but has rather had the misfortune of hosting some of the most virulent groups of rabid ultra-right wing Ukrainian fascists who were transplanted into the Prairies by Anglo-American intelligence networks in the wake of WWII. Today, many of these 2nd and 3rd generation Banderites control powerful institutions like the Ukrainian Congress of Canada (UCC) and have bred such confused and dangerous fascists as Canada’s own Deputy Prime Minister (and leading Rhodes Scholar) Chrystia Freeland.

--//--

@ Posted by: pretzelattack | Dec 16 2019 14:28 utc | 43

I wouldn't trust Wikipedia if I were you.

The original plan was to deport. Hitler changed idea during the WWII itself, and we don't know exactly why he did that, but the reality was that they needed a strong narrative to compel its soldiers to invade the USSR and the fact that they needed slave labor to keep up with its war economy. Most of the Jews didn't die as a result of executions, but of forced labor. The Jews didn't even make up for the majority of the dead during the Holocaust.

What happened was that the Jews who couldn't work were summarily executed (children, very sick, disabled etc.) -- but that was fruit of necessity, not of ideology. This circumstancial policies generated the myth in the West that nazism was anti-disabled people (even if they were Aryan).

Hitler only finally decreed a centralized economy (based on FDR's war economy) in 1943. Before that, Germany was pretty much a normal liberal economy under martial law. Even after centralization, the German industrialists maintained their private property and their power to negotiate with the Führer as equals. Classifying Nazism as some form of socialism/communism is another western Cold War era revisionism (see "Totalitarianism").

The Nazis begun 1933 by exterminating the German communists. It is a western revisionism they begun as an outright race extermination. Nazism was definitely born as an anti-communist political movement, which later (and only after German communism was decimated), as the opportunities of colonization of Eastern Europe and the prospect of a potential empire building mirroring the British one in the East arose, the race narrative begun to assume the forefront of Nazi propaganda.

Posted by: vk | Dec 16 2019 14:54 utc | 44

...
It is pure evil to conflate Jewishness by accident of birth or indoctrinated religion with Zionism.
...
Posted by: uncle tungsten | Dec 16 2019 3:35 utc | 30

I beg to differ.
The Jews who live in "Israel" and kill Palestinians, steal their land and terrorise their children, call it the Jewish State.
Jews who don't live in "Israel" call it the Jewish Homeland.

If there were enough Good Jews to stop the Zionist Jews from diminishing the lives of Palestinians in order to steal their land then they would have succeeded - already.
But there weren't, and still aren't, enough Good Jews to stop the savagery and theft of the Zionist Jews in "Israel".

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Dec 16 2019 15:40 utc | 45

US missed Apollo 11 moment of this decade with its anti-China rhetoric – RT’s Keiser Report

Now, this is a very interesting topic for discussion: why didn't the USA behave to China in 2019 like it did to the USSR in 1958?

The answer is very simple: dwindling profit rates.

The USA is a capitalist system, and capitalism needs certain profit rates to complete its reproduction cycles.

In the 1950s-1960s, the USA enjoyed extremely high profit rates, so it could invest in infrastructure and new technologies in large scale while maintaining capitalism's necessary valorisation process, the condition sine qua non for it to keep existing after a cycle ends.

That's not so much the case in post-2008 USA: profits collapsed and the only way out is through "financialization" (a pejorative term to designate the inflation of fictitious capital).

That's why there's no Marshall Plan part 2 for Europe; that's why there's no Marshall Plan for Latin America and Africa; that's why it is trying to "compete" with Huawei through destruction and not competition; that's why Puerto Rico is still in ruins; that's why Flint still has lead poisoned water; that's why there's no Medicare For All. If the USA removes the capital it has on Wall Street, its ficitious nature reveals itself, and everything evaporates.

Posted by: vk | Dec 16 2019 15:41 utc | 46

vk - 44
The Nazis goal has always been the purification and "improvement" of men by wiping out undesirables, be they "races" or disabled people. The plan for Jews in the 1930s was deportation because downright immediate genocide would've caused trouble, would've been a lot to handle, and wasn't deemed necessary at this step of the Nazi conquest of the world. Since they planned to take over the planet, deporting Jews in (mostly inhabited) Uganda or Madagascar wasn't an issue; they would eventually conquer the place as well and eventually be able to exterminate them all - just like the Nazis didn't bother to invade Switzerland or Sweden as long as they stayed neutral and were of some use, since these minor countries would eventually be annexed once bigger European powers like USSR and UK would be out of the way.
When fast victory vanished, part of the Nazi hierarchy went into some kind of panic mode, and for the nasties most blockheaded ideologues, wiping out the Jews became a top priority, even to the cost of the war effort. Since the German economy was already in tatters, they went to great pain to make as much profit as possible from the camps, even during the extermination phase.
The great mistake people make about WWII and the Nazi program is that they assume the Jews were the main target; they were quite possibly the most odious one to Nazi leaders, but a lot of other people were on the hit-list. We speak about the Jewish Holocaust and not about the Slav or Black Holocaust because the Nazis were stopped before they could actually go to the next step of the program - and also because the first target, the Communists, weren't as numerous and were soon enough considered the main Enemy, once WWII was over, so better forget about it.

Posted by: Clueless Joe | Dec 16 2019 15:59 utc | 47

seems like i've read the first target of nazi executions was retarded kids, but i don't remember where. at any rate, they definitely wanted to wipe out what they saw as inferior groups, jews among them.

Posted by: pretzelattack | Dec 16 2019 16:17 utc | 48

Posted by: pretzelattack | Dec 16 2019 16:17 utc | 48

"seems like i've read the first target of nazi executions was retarded kids, but i don't remember where."

The first formal extermination program was the euthanasia program targeting the mentally retarded and insane in asylums, which began at the same time as the attack on Poland and was officially discontinued under domestic pressure in the summer of 1943 (though "off the books" it continued where it could be done quietly).

Posted by: Russ | Dec 16 2019 16:38 utc | 49

Capitalism needs certain profit rates to complete its reproduction cycles. by: vk @ 46

Do not agree with capitalism needs certain profit rates. Capitalist might want certain profit rates but capitalism drives profits to near zero, provides full employment to the extent of the available market for its goods and services. Capitalism needs monopoly free economic space for its actors to compete with each other in fair but aggressive fashion, much like a football game is played. Competition is the essence of capitalism, invention is the force that knocks the big guys down and keeps the wealth of nations more or less evenly distributed within the masses.

The government is the referee in a capitalist society. The government keeps the economic space competitive. Competition brings the profits down to nearly zero, it distributes the wealth in turmoil like fashion, because invention reduces last weeks successes to today's bankruptcies so capitalism prevents wealth from concentrating in one place (invention reduced yesterday's big corporation to today's bankruptcy). Capitalism continuously redistributes the wealth in response to new inventions and market capacity/choice. Capitalist seek to provide full employment as they compete with each other, in the market space, even when the goods and services are produced and offered for sale, the market decides if they want them or not.

Economic Zionism on the other hand collects monopolies, privatizes government sector assets and concentrates its ever growing wealth and monopolistic power into fewer and fewer surviving entities. EZ seeks to use the nation states that host their activities to advance monopoly power and to restrict access by others to the market place. The military and other resources of host nations become tools often used by the EZ to strong arm their way into markets, and deny all others producer rights and access to the market space itself. EZ is king of the mountain economics that depends on a gun, rule of law, and abuse of humanity for its own everyting and control everything goal.

When the host governments fails to prevent anti competitive activities or when host governments fail to prevent conditions to exist that allow monopoly powers such governments become tools EZ can use to advance their ownership over everything and everyone.

Posted by: snake | Dec 16 2019 17:04 utc | 50

@ Posted by: snake | Dec 16 2019 17:04 utc | 50

Capitalism is definitely not a game, and I discourage anyone from making such metaphors in these kind of analysis.

Competition, albeit essential, is not exclusive to capitalism. Deng Xiaoping reforms of 1984 implemented SOE competition. Competition exists even in nature, between species and specimens. More importantly, competition is just an abstract concept.

Capitalist competition always ends with a winner. The winner is the monopoly. The process of monopoly formation Marx called "centralization of capital", the process in which the capitalist devours other capitalists in order to form bigger capitals. Monopoly is not the opposite of competition, but its result, its logical end.

Profit rates tend to zero because the organic composition of capital tends to rise, not because of competition. When capitalism becomes "too big", it becomes more and more difficult for it to reproduce the part that already exists with the newly available mass of surplus value.

Posted by: vk | Dec 16 2019 17:28 utc | 51

@ Posted by: snake | Dec 16 2019 17:04 utc | 50 with Zionist Derangement Syndrome (ZDS) again

If you can be a broken sick record with your ZDS then so can I be here to call you out on your dog whistle racism about who owns global private finance.

Once again let me challenge you to otherwise prove that Zionists own global private finance or take your dog whistle ZDS racism to some alt-racism web site where you will be more acceptable.

Tell us again how you made up the term and it doesn't really mean what everyone else knows the words to mean.

Posted by: psychohistorian | Dec 16 2019 17:36 utc | 52

shaun @ 2.

Yes, the .. hmm, serious frown, then wink-wink oopsey we ‘goofed’ story.

... Upholding the myth of the US as a bumbling do-gooder. The soldiers, the best guys ever, the most principled, tough, honest, giving their lives for democracy, a true holy sacrifice ...

Since the 2001 US invasion of Afgh. (btw was given the green light by the internationals before 9/11) and now coming up to 20 years later, stories about corruption, mismanag., dire mistakes, suddenly emerge.

All that means is that the op is to be wound down (played out, thrashed, no longer any use, etc.) or conversely that all is in hand (drug trade) and there is no longer any need to invest too much.

vk. at 3. i tried at some point to grasp who actually owns Land in GB.

This blog is +++ (England only)

https://whoownsengland.org

see also (initiative by same)

http://map.whoownsengland.org

book (haven’t read it)

https://www.amazon.com/Who-Owns-England-Guy-Shrubsole/dp/0008321671

Land ownership is apparently very secret. (This also ties in with EU Subisidies and Brexit.)

Posted by: Noirette | Dec 16 2019 17:59 utc | 53

I am wondering if neocapitalism (taking snake's inference that there is a 'good' capitalism) raised its ugly head as a replacement for the profit taking that had to be rampantly underway with the Vietnam War. Thanks to psychohistorian for bringing up the key moment that Nixon, who inherited that war and kept it going, took the dollar off the gold standard in order to keep it as the world currency. (I am simplifying but that's because I have to keep things simple in order to understand - matters of finance are a foreign language to me.)

This being so, it would seem only a matter of time, and time running short, before the universal use of such currency will cease to be universal, since it is based on ...what? The delirium of the stock market cannot be believed. It is just plain scary.

In my native land, with nary an international ripple, a barely dormant volcano erupted, and two boatloads of tourists were suddenly in harm's way. I followed that online, and for a few people, (a very few counted internationally), the result was very horrible indeed. And there were a few very brave people also who were injured or lost their lives trying to save others. I don't really think there were any evil persons in the mix. No nazis; no zionists; no capitalists; no communists. People burning.

Australia too is burning. That's another far away beacon of tragedy coming soon to the northern hemisphere as well. The world is not ready for these happenings, but surely they are soon to be upon us. And it won't matter that Greta Thunberg went firstclass on the train. Or that Boris Johnson is not what he pretends to be (if he is not; I have really no idea.)

The world is uncovering itself at the same time as these frightening events are happening - not only the world but the universe too. Knowledge, science is like the stock market - stratospheric. Reaching almost back to the beginning of time.

We are all in this together. In ancient times, nobody believed Cassandra - that was her curse, that she saw what was going to happen but was condemned never to be believed - she's there in that first play of Aeschylus's Oresteia, and it's after an ongoing interminable war as well. In the final play, though, Athens is born.

Thank you, b. You assist us in providing a place to gather and to gather our thoughts. That has been very well done indeed.

Posted by: juliania | Dec 16 2019 18:01 utc | 54

snake @ 5 says:

I think there is something much more treacherous in trying to merge Zionism with either members of the Jewish race or adherents to the religious claims of the Jewish religious establishments

the Jews are not a race and Zionism as an ideology is somewhat of a smorgasborg, even if it primarily advocates for the (apartheid) Jewish state, which was not long ago enshrined in law.

a pivotal moment in the annals of Zionism and the State of Israel(Benjamin Netanyahu)

yes, the legacy of the Judeo-Nazis.

the German Nazis had roots in Islamic fundamentalism, too. Haj Amin Muhammad Al Husseini, the once grand mufti of Jerusalem, while in exile in Nazi Germany in 1944, issued a decree to kill the Jews wherever you find them. This pleases God, history, and religion, and recruited Bosnia Muslims for the German Waffen SS who were apparently responsible for the murder of most of the Yugoslavian Jewish population.

so, expressed as a Venn diagram, there'd be a logical overlapping of Nazis, Jews, Zionists, and Islamic fundamentalists.

Posted by: john | Dec 16 2019 18:21 utc | 55

I often equate the Evil Outlaw US Empire to that of Nazi Germany. I'm not the only one. In "On Rogues and Rogue States", former "keyboard mercenary" Fred Reed:

"How did Nazi Germany differ from the United States today? There is the same lying. Washington insisted that Iraq was about to get nuclear weapons, biological agents, that it had poisonous gas. None of this was true. The government, unimpeded by the media, persuaded over half of the American population that Iraq was responsible for Nine-Eleven. Now it says that Iran works to get nuclear weapons, and of course that the Russians are coming. The American press, informally but strictly controlled, carefully doesn’t challenge any of this."

Doesn't differ much from what I recently wrote on the matter. His essay well proves his thesis.

The recent discussion about the EU and certainly NATO being CIA projects and related articles are appearing now because both the EU and NATO risk coming undone. Alastair Crooke's essay "The Post-War ‘Consensus’ is Over – ‘Either We Reinvent Bretton Woods, or It Risks Losing Relevance’" looks into their current condition while reviewing their roots. I find it interesting that paleoconservatives are the ones being critical and provide a high percentage of Crooke's sources in all his writings. Europe is about set to begin feeling its actual size as an outlier to a much larger geographical structure that proves European's contention that their nations constitute a continent are ill-founded. Looking at that same map, we can see the rationale behind Russo-Sino geoeconomic strategy by the immense size of the contiguous area of Russia + Kazakhstan + Mongolia + China + Iran + Belarus who are already connected and whose economies collectively are already bigger than EU's.

Great hope was placed by the Baltic States and their NATO minders in their becoming EU members, But as this translation, "The Baltic states are horrified of losing the Russian transit" provides, their demented Russophobia is destroying them such that they'll now need to go further back in time for others to accuse for their current dilemmas. Of course, adhering to the Neoliberal prescription's also undoing them. As Russia's actions prove, the "threat" it poses isn't via invasion; rather, it's by evacuation.

Posted by: karlof1 | Dec 16 2019 18:32 utc | 56

@Posted by: evilempire | Dec 15 2019 20:51 utc | 9

The thing is that most probably what you say here as an intent on satire could carry some if not great truth....

That Putin and many in his cabinet love US style of life is a known fact ( in words of Maria Zakharova she loves being in NYC...). For example, why he chose to perform, amongst the millions of songs in the world of music out there, "Strawberry Fields", and not "Granada"? I will tell you, they do not willingly overthrew the USSR to become a Spain of tres al cuarto, all the more with the bunch of communist there are and always have been in such a country, no, they did it to become the US of the East. This is why Gorbachov even made money advertising US Pizza franchises...

See how in Rossiya 1 they see it quite acceptable, that the man that for action or inaction opened the door to those who provoked the death of around 12 million Russian people because of sudden degradation of living standard and evaporating of their savings, ended living in the US, giving lectures there and in Western Europe, and promoting US junk food...

Related to Greta, you are not so misdirected either, since the circle begins to close.... It is simply a performance that those in the side of far-right or so called "populist right" ( where could be place Putin...) express fake opposition to Greta, while insisting in the climate change hoax, since Greta works for the same corporations/hedge funds they so do, or sold their country to...Here Greta supporting Joshua Wong...and Joshua Wong supporting Greta...

https://twitter.com/ciudadfutura/status/1206316837002260480

Posted by: Sasha | Dec 16 2019 18:49 utc | 57

@ Posted by: Clueless Joe | Dec 16 2019 15:59 utc | 47

I don't know your sources, but it's important to highlight the fact that Westerners (be they academia or not) have the very bad habit of cropping History in order to reinforce false narratives.

The Nazis is a classic example: they begin their history in 1933, as if Hitler fell from the sky.

But the Nazi history doesn't begin in 1933: it begins in 1918, with the Freikorps.

Hitler depended on two narratives to consolidate his power and project it: the myth that the social-democrats, as a middleman of the Bolsheviks, "stabbed the German Army in the back" and that's why Germany lost WWI to legitimate his power at home; and that the Germans were the superior race to legitimate German expansion (Lebensraum) in order to legitimate German capitalist expansion in order to create an colonial empire that could mirror the British one in the east.

Another example is the Russia Revolution: western historians (amateurs or not) love to begin its history in October 1917, as if Lenin appeared ex nihilo in the Red Square. They forget to mention that the 1917 Revolution was, in fact, two revolutions: February and October. The February one was very conservative, and betrayed the Russian people by returning to WWI and by trying to rehabilitate Nicholas II (who committed the fatal mistake of refusing the invitation) and denied the land reform. They do this "cropping" because they try to sell the narrative that the Bolsheviks usurped power thanks to some kind of mythical Asiatic/Jewish mischievousness and only won the Civil War because of superior propaganda.

Posted by: vk | Dec 16 2019 19:07 utc | 58

juliania @54--

Marx saw capitalism as "good" in that its contradictions would bring about its antithesis, Socialism, but the forces of Reaction intervened to extend the "Era of Contradictions" which is now nearing its temporal end as it's quite clear the Paradigm will change. But what will it become is one of the questions we explore here. The calamity experienced by the volcano tourists can be visited upon unexpecting/unprepared people at almost anytime. The changing Climate is whipsawing Australia as its tectonic plate moves northward at the impressive rate of 6-7 Centimeters/yr (by comparison, I'm only moving West on the North American Plate at 1-2 Millimeters/yr). IMO, in 100 years, Aussies won't be living where they are now as their urban landscapes become untenable. Did you read Pepe Escobar's two-part travel series on the Pamir? Roof of the world, indeed! And it keeps growing taller faster than the climate can currently erode the rock. Yet humans make a living there and have for centuries. Amazing, yes? Two of my anthropological questions seems to have been answered: Where did the Vedic peoples (they were fire and sun worshipers) migrate to? and Where did the Zoroastrians (fire and sun worshipers) come from?

Hope you're prepared for more snow as Solstice approaches!

Posted by: karlof1 | Dec 16 2019 19:12 utc | 59

karlof1@56
Thanks for the link 'On Rogues & Rogue States'

I appreciate the dark humour of the line:

"Washington never sleeps in its campaigns to improve the lives of people whose most fervent wish is that America stop improving their lives."

Couldn't agree more with the sentiment expressed.

Posted by: Jon_in_AU | Dec 16 2019 19:15 utc | 60

vk @58--

Nazism began in UK during 19th Century atop roots much older based on racist ethnocentrism and Feudal economics brought there by Romans. You need to look into where Cecil Rhodes and brethren acquired their ideas.

Posted by: karlof1 | Dec 16 2019 19:26 utc | 61

@ russ
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Child_euthanasia_in_Nazi_Germany


yeah the formal program for this started in 1939, according to the wiki article. they were obviously targetting socialists, their main competiton, before that. iirc, jews were seen as some of the major perps behind "stabbing german veterans in the back in ww1", so the ground was being laid right after that.

Posted by: pretzelattack | Dec 16 2019 19:29 utc | 62

In relation to the post of mine who was wiped out in the last Open Thread, where I had translated in part an article by Professor VincenÇ Navarro on the EP Resolution to equate nazism and communism as culprits of initiating WWII, along with proscribing communists symbols and ideas, an event proving that my point was true has just happened in Spain.

My point is that through this resolution, what it is intended is not the equally demonization of nazism and communism, but the demonization of communism and whitwashing of fascism, since when voting in the UNSC for forbidding nazi expressions and symbols, the EU as a whole abstains, with the US and its satellites in Eastern Europe voting against the motion....

What has happened in Spain is the following:

The Rayo - Albacete match suspended for insulting Zozulya

The match was taking place in Vallecas, Madrid antifascist neighborhood and home of Rayo Vallecano team. Chants coming from the background of the stadium calling Ukrainian player of Albacete team, Zozulya, "puto nazi", got with the match suspended because the team where the nazi Zozulya plays refused to continue playing if nazi Zozulya was continued being called nazi, in a first time event, when futbol matches, have been places where all kind of insults have been proferred against the most varied range of persons...including black people...

The thing is that calling Zozulya "puto nazi" is not an insult, bu ta description...See for yourself...

https://twitter.com/madridistafiel/status/1206335058816225280

https://twitter.com/Klkautsky1/status/1206315438801670145

https://twitter.com/Herrera_JH_/status/1206318144027013121

https://twitter.com/ciudadfutura/status/1206341731861614592

https://twitter.com/Nicknonimo/status/1206323682530013185

https://twitter.com/bukaneros92/status/1206319334844502018

https://twitter.com/Electronzurdo/status/1206346282958303232

https://twitter.com/castrocalo/status/1206352388820553731

https://twitter.com/Bundesliguero/status/1206328111459119104

https://twitter.com/sacedator/status/1206354739077767168

This morning I had breakfast hearing in the Basque public radio that the match was suspended because of "hatred expressions"....Then, I guess yo uwould not be surprised, I went piss to the bathroom and took no drop...Current Basque government is right wing...in power non stop since 40 years already....

Now, tell me this is not an insititutionalized goal.

What it is is intended here is demonizing communist ideas since those will be who mainly will oppose the coming IV Reich needed when the skies are fallen, hijack "socialism" as fake denomination of fake opposition to the Reich, and whitewash nazism as acceptable political option and social stance which will took over.

This way, if you do not have noticed, the architects of all this, the "alt-right", are subtly turning the political correctness in favor of nazism, and claiming "safe spaces" for the nazis now, while the new scapegoat are the communists.

If you do not see this subtle slow contruction, it is because or you are in favor of all this, or you are not paying enough attention.

Posted by: Sasha | Dec 16 2019 19:34 utc | 63

Jon_in_AU @60--

Thanks for your reply! Yes, I second your assessment. Do note that the essay was first published at the Unz Review, run by Ron Unz who I'd classify as a Paleoconservative and former co-founder and editor of American Conservative. IMO, that group's general revulsion at what the Outlaw US Empire's become is at times better placed and more sincere than that of the D-Party Left. If you explore Unz's writings, you might be surprised what you find.

Posted by: karlof1 | Dec 16 2019 19:37 utc | 64

@ karlof1 | Dec 16 2019 18:32 utc | 56

Seems you have added another item to my 'to read pile'. Turn about is fair play so from that pile I'll offer:

Jared Diamond, Upheaval, How Nations Cope with Crisis and Change, ISBN 078-0-241-00339-8

which caught my eye on a recent excursion into a favourite book-vender (from yet to read pile).

About your "His essay well proves his thesis.", I would hope you trust the reader to determine what is proof or not. Maybe asserting his essay supports his thesis might allow that liberty of decision.

As for Breton Woods, having read John Maynard Keynes' accounts themselves, there is precious little evidence anyone writing on the subject today has the foggiest idea what they are talking about, but, like their constitutional right to have an opinion will exercise that right, even when they have nothing to say, will say it anyway. If you don't have the foggiest idea where you have been, don't know where you are now, how can you ever hope to navigate to the place you wish to go?

Posted by: Formerly T-Bear | Dec 16 2019 19:45 utc | 65

India, China treated differently by West on ethnic issue

Oh, really?! Who would've thought! I can't imagine why that's the case...

Posted by: vk | Dec 16 2019 19:49 utc | 66

Sasha @63--

I saw RT published an article about the Zozulya incident. All forms of supremacism must be condemned for the tool it is designed to be--a hammer aimed at crushing solidarity.

Posted by: karlof1 | Dec 16 2019 19:49 utc | 67

The thing is that extrem far-right groups have run amok on the futbol stadiumsvv for decades since the 80-90s, and nobody have raised a voice...nor a match have been suspended ever...till now...

Remembering Guus Hiddink, the man who said no

Posted by: Sasha | Dec 16 2019 20:10 utc | 68

@Posted by: karlof1 | Dec 16 2019 19:49 utc | 67

I find that article too mild, and kinda defending Zozulya, fitting well with the current u-turn I am noticing in the current Russian administration....

They were precisely futbol affictionates of Dinamo of Kiev who directed by nazi Right Sector operatives, amongst them Serhyi Sternenko, burned alive dozens on people in Odessa and finished those who were trying to scape from the fire by heavy beating.

The Ukraine army, who this article says Zozulya says is what he supports, is the official army of a nazi state, ruled by nazis, and trained by the orchestrators of nazi coup d´etat and promoters of the current wave of nazism through their ideologues like Bannon. Zozulya does not support those who deserted, but those killing his own nationals in Donbass...i.e. the nazis...That, an article in an official Russian media should clarify enough...

Posted by: Sasha | Dec 16 2019 20:30 utc | 69

@ Posted by: karlof1 | Dec 16 2019 18:32 utc | 56 with the Alastair Crooke essay about reinventing Bretton Woods

Bretton Woods was never fully implemented or we wouldn't have the bank of banks, the BIS that was suppose to go away.

If there is a reinvention of Bretton Woods I hope it creates a public version of the BIS and does away with private banking entirely so that our human social contract does not end up dictatorial like it is currently.

Posted by: psychohistorian | Dec 16 2019 20:38 utc | 70

@Posted by: karlof1 | Dec 16 2019 19:37 utc | 64

The Unz Review, to be Paleoconservative, in case that is a good thing to be, publishes and allows way too much comments which could be labeled white supremacist and even nazi. All that stuff about IQ they have ubiquitous and which overhwelmingly prevails there is simply nauseating

Most of the rewritting of history, on equating communism and nazism and whitewashing of nazism we are currently seeing going official everywhere started in webpages like that and those supporting Trump´s presidency.

What a Paleoconservative is supposed to be? Another invent on whitewashing I fear...Do not tell me, Pat Lang is a "paleoconservative"...the man who always praises Franco from his blog...We are supposed to think that Franco was alos a "paleoconservative"...

You notice how they, the far-right, diversify their political/electoral options so that offering of them from the most extremist to the, apparently, most sounding acceptable/democratic/constitutionalist. Then, once grabbed power, by any of their multiple tentacles, they allign all togetehr to crush social policies...This happens all the time in Spain, and happens in the US too..

Posted by: Sasha | Dec 16 2019 20:43 utc | 71

Sasha #57
It’s really sad how brainwashed/bribed/infiltrated by “Western” Liberalism a large majority of Russia’s government really is, especially as someone who is proud of their Russian ancestry, and considers themselves a staunch Anti-Imperialist, Anti-Zionist, Anti-Revisionist, Marxist-Leninist, who upholds the legacy and accomplishments of the Soviet Union, and who believes that its collapse was not just a catastrophe for Russia (which everyone including Putin admits), but for all Working class people worldwide. However, even with my extreme disappointment (if not disgust) in the modern Russian government, I still hold my nose and support Putin against U$ regime change efforts, because as flawed and naive as he is, he’s still the only major world leader who has taken any action to oppose U$ imperialism (by annexing Crimea and saving Assad), and the replacement that the U$ would install would be a Yelstin clone who would completely finish off Russia. Despite that fact, it should be noted that the few Anti-Imperialist actions of Putin’s Russia are not even 1% of the Anti-Imperialism of the Soviet Union, which for half a century kept half the world from being exploited by the tentacles of Wall Street, and provided the oppressed workers of other half with the hope that Capitalism would one day be overthrown. On a different (but related) note, considering your insightful (if not depressing) analysis of modern Russia, what’s your opinion on the nature of China, which so many posters here seem to believe is the “answer” to all of humanities problems?

Posted by: 18481917 | Dec 16 2019 21:06 utc | 72

karlof1 @ 64 says:

If you explore Unz's writings, you might be surprised what you find

yeah, i agree.

is it just a coincidence that the major piece i linked to @ 55 was written by Ron Unz?

Posted by: john | Dec 16 2019 21:10 utc | 73

Thanks, karlof1 @ 59 - especially the plate info on Australia - New Zealand once upon a time was tucked up against its eastern coast. (I being precocious as a youngster (!) had noticed this well before it became scientific fact.) Fortunately the distance is greater now, though there is some similar vegetation in the Queensland area, and we inherited some wallabies but that was much later on due to some ne'er do well importing them. (Not to mention possums, so I won't.)

Yes indeed, Pepe is some raconteur! That is awe-inspiring country. And I thought the Rockies were big.

I had been thinking that the increasing weight of the oceans might be affecting things adversely - Aotearoa is certainly getting cliff erosion down there of much more noticeable significance than in my youth, and considering no place in New Zealand is more than fifty miles from the coast, that is making a difference. I haven't seen any computation of landmass shrinkages but both islands do have mountainous terrain, unlike many other Pacific island nations. I grew up in Auckland and that area is a mass of dormant volcanoes - one, Rangitoto, having erupted in Maori ancestral memory.

Posted by: juliania | Dec 16 2019 21:34 utc | 74

@Posted by: 18481917 | Dec 16 2019 21:06 utc | 72

Sorry man for not having answered you again on that post, but I just am refusing to repost what I have already posted and have been disapeared or banned, just do not have the time, and do not want to use the extra energy.

But I will be posting more or less thte same points kept in other way in my next comments, thus you will be able to test my stancee eventhough I am not adressing you personally.

Anyway, as I can see your insistence, I will try to remake my points made to your first post.

You told me I was being too though on Putin, and I anwered that one is never too tough on a leader who holds such power of legislation at home, veto at UNSC, and military might...

On what you say about saving Crimea and Assad, I precisely pointed out that in both cases he was saving his military interests....but could have done more for the people...

With respect to China, I feel that their stance is not so suspicious as it is becoming for me that of Putin´s Russia, since they, after all, are communists, although with Chinese characteristics ( i. e. with capitalist hints...But I do not know what China would do were the world to turn into totalitarian world order of fascist characteristics...

Posted by: Sasha | Dec 16 2019 22:19 utc | 75

First thing Johnson hurried to do, outlaw BDS...

Posted by: Sasha | Dec 16 2019 22:20 utc | 76

john @73--

Thanks for your reply! No, I'm not surprised in the least that Unz wrote such an article where he makes a major point that's being debated in the Max Blumenthal thread:

"This sort of astonishing counter-factual possibility is not nearly as totally absurd as it might sound to our present-day ears. We must recognize that our historical understanding of reality is shaped by the media, and media organs are controlled by the winners of major wars and their allies, with inconvenient details often excluded to avoid confusing the public. It is undeniably true that in his 1924 book Mein Kampf, Hitler had written all sorts of hostile and nasty things about Jews, especially those who were recent immigrants from Eastern Europe, but when I read the book back in high school, I was a little surprised to discover that these anti-Jewish sentiments hardly seemed central to his text. Furthermore, just a couple of years earlier, a vastly more prominent public figure such as British Minister Winston Churchill had published sentiments nearly as hostile and nasty, focusing on the monstrous crimes being committed by Bolshevik Jews. In Albert Lindemann’s Esau’s Tears, I was surprised to discover that the author of the famous Balfour Declaration, the foundation of the Zionist project, was apparently also quite hostile to Jews, with an element of his motivation probably being his desire to exclude them from Britain." [My Emphasis]

While Unz and I have differing political viewpoints, we both share the quest for objectivity, which ought to be considered a fundamental conservative value, not something leftist at all. Admittedly, I don't follow Unz nearly as closely as I should, so I thank you again for your reply and link to his important essay!

Posted by: karlof1 | Dec 16 2019 23:09 utc | 77

Zelensky has Twitted in defense of Zozulya....

"Roman Zozulia you have support not only from your team but from all Ukraine. You are not only a cool player but a good patriot who wants his homeland and helps his military. We are with you. I shake your hand".


https://twitter.com/SergueiMakarov/status/1206678844247285762

I wonder whether Surkov will Twitt something too...

Posted by: Sasha | Dec 16 2019 23:24 utc | 78

Sputnik kinda whitwashing Zozulya...obviating the multiple images are there in the networks of him with hairdo and images of Stepan Bandera and supportive of Pravy Sektor, and publishing instead some from a Twitter account who shows him as kinda "good guy"...

Thus, not, the Russian administration is not changing ( by whatever ongoing negotiations...) ...it´s all my imagination...and Zozulya is not a nazi...Aaayy, how much I remember the poor Mozgovoi...

Zozulya is a Banderist, i.e. a nazi, and everybody in the Spanish antifascist movement knows it, this is why we do not want this nazi playing in Spain...

Posted by: Sasha | Dec 16 2019 23:46 utc | 79

@Posted by: karlof1 | Dec 16 2019 23:09 utc | 77

I am astonished by the astonishing number of people in the US who have read Mein Kampf in their teens...like you, and The Saker, for example...

Is it a mandatory reading there for teens or what?

Posted by: Sasha | Dec 16 2019 23:49 utc | 80

Sasha @80--

Mein Kampf isn't required reading at any level of schooling until you get to grad level seminars. I didn't read it until I was in my late 30s doing self-directed study while living in Hawaii and working at U of H Manoa. Admittedly, many find the rise of Nazism and Hitler oddly fascinating and are more curious as to why than wanting to become like them. Shirer's 1960 The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich: A History of Nazi Germany is what I saw many people reading as I grew up during the 1960s, which is where I first read any references to Mein Kampf.

Within the Outlaw US Empire, history's taught very poorly nowadays, something I wanted to make a difference in when I trained to teach. I know I succeeded but touched too few people. IMO, trying to do more is why we comment here.

Posted by: karlof1 | Dec 17 2019 0:23 utc | 81

@Posted by: karlof1 | Dec 17 2019 0:23 utc | 81

Do not think, I am not at all surprised to know that Mein Kampf is a mandatory read in the US....

I have read your current POTUS have Hitler speeches in his bedside table....along with Ayn Rand´s works....

WE REMEMBER: Ayn Rand, the philosopher of capitalist ultraindividualism, was an anti-communist who secretly collaborated with the FBI and supported the witch hunt of MacCarthism

https://twitter.com/Amor_y_Rabia/status/1206256708911353856


Posted by: Sasha | Dec 17 2019 0:40 utc | 82

Have you call me Nazi? Match suspended!

https://twitter.com/niporwifi/status/1206323983982964736

And, according with the newly released stick of measure, you are besides a racist!

Posted by: Sasha | Dec 17 2019 0:43 utc | 83

Calling Zozulya Nazi is racism, because Zozulya is of the Nazi race.

https://twitter.com/theklaneh/status/1206316744324845568

Oh,hohooo, wait, there you go...

The prosecutor office considers a crime hate incitement towards the Nazis

https://twitter.com/en_farra/status/1206391245578395656

But you can hate communists all what you want, including burning them alive, like the friends of Zozulya did in Odessa, you keep calm that the EP, the US, German government and the prosecutors office will defend your rights to go scot-free..

Posted by: Sasha | Dec 17 2019 0:53 utc | 84

@Posted by: karlof1 | Dec 17 2019 0:23 utc | 81

As you have such pedagogic vocation, could you define for me the term "Paleoconservative", and delineate in a nutshell what this ideology is?

Posted by: Sasha | Dec 17 2019 0:56 utc | 85

So apparently Kolomoisky and Avakov might be teaming up, with Avakov’s muscle protecting Zelensky and his administration, and helping push forward their agenda (article by Rostislav Ishchenko) :

https://www.stalkerzone.org/who-needs-the-killers-of-pavel-sheremet/

Posted by: Penguin | Dec 17 2019 3:37 utc | 86

I just came across this comment in Naked Capitalism's Links - thought it very helpful:
OpenThePodBayDoorsHAL
December 16, 2019 at 4:17 pm
No matter how much one hates The Orange Man one should hate even more an attack on the Republic.

So by all means let’s vote to be rid of the man.

But normalizing the removal of an elected president because the opposition party happens to have more votes in Congress: is that *really* the precedent we want to set, for the other team to use if/when they please?

The source is Alan Dershowitz but he does know a thing or two about the Constitution:

These two grounds – abuse of power and obstruction of Congress – are not among the criteria specified for impeachment. Neither one is a high crime and misdemeanor. Neither is mentioned in the Constitution.

Both are the sort of vague, open-ended criteria specifically rejected by the framers.

They were rejected precisely to avoid the situation in which our nation currently finds itself.

Abuse of power can be charged against virtually every controversial president by the opposing party.

And obstruction of Congress – whatever else it may mean – cannot extend to a president invoking privileges and then leave it to the courts to referee conflicts between the legislative and executive branches.

Hamilton feared that vague criteria would allow a majority of the House to impeach a president from the opposing party just because they had more votes than the president’s party.

He called that “the greatest danger.” Madison worried that open-ended criteria, such as “maladministration” would give Congress too much discretion and power, and turn our republic into a parliamentary democracy in which the chief executive serves at the will of the legislature.

To prevent these dangers, the framers settled on criteria with well-established meanings: treason, bribery and other high crimes and misdemeanors.

The House Democrats are simply ignoring these words and this history, because they have the votes to do so.

They are following the absurd notion put forth by Congresswoman Maxine Waters that when it comes to impeachment “there is no law,” and the criteria are anything a majority of the House wants it be, regardless of what the Constitution mandates.

This lawless view confuses what a majority of Congress can get away with (absent judicial review) with what the Constitution requires. It places Congress above the supreme law of the land, namely the Constitution.

Were Congress to vote to impeach President Trump on the two proposed grounds, its action would be unconstitutional.

According to Hamilton in Federalist 78, any act of Congress that does not comport with the Constitution is “void.” This view was confirmed by the Supreme Court in Marbury v. Madison and is now the law of the land.

Posted by: juliania | Dec 17 2019 4:22 utc | 87

@ juliania | Dec 17 2019 4:22 utc | 87

The present U.S. Constitution, even with all amendments included, never accounted for either 1) political parties, or 2) the failure of civil discourse and the social discourtesy toward (perceived) other. That constitution was devised by a generation having obtained a high level of education and sophistication not since equalled and today a far distant comparison despite all the marvels of technology spanning time, distance and availability of knowledge. Imagine if you will the flight path of a bird with two right wings working counter each other. The society that constitution was written to protect has now degenerated into the equivalent of a group of squabbling preschoolers; do not expect any self-correction to issue from that lot, a true fools hope that.

Posted by: Formerly T-Bear | Dec 17 2019 12:05 utc | 88

The road on the roof of the world is China National Highway 318 from Shanghai to Tibet. There is even an Everest Road that branches from it and reaches North Base Camp. You can take a tour bus to get there. Really takes the sport out of getting to Everest base camp now.

Posted by: movement | Dec 17 2019 12:07 utc | 89

Penguin @86: Interesting indeed, thanks for the link. I've been wondering what Zelensky was going to do.

Posted by: Bemildred | Dec 17 2019 12:16 utc | 90

Im not sure if this has been addressed, but Syrian Perspective seems to have been wiped out....
Canthama? Igor?

Posted by: Chevrus | Dec 17 2019 15:53 utc | 91

American propaganda is now romanticizing its own poverty and desperation (courtesy of YouTube's algorithm):

Couple Build Amazing Shipping Container Home For Debt-Free Living

Posted by: vk | Dec 17 2019 15:57 utc | 92

In a clear and desperate attempt to crush the rise of socialism, French police brutally assaults protesters with tear gas in blatant violation of Human Rights [/sarcasm]:

Police use tear gas against French pension reform protesters in Paris (VIDEOS)

--//--

Lighthizer has been used here as some kind of legitimate source. Well, how about this gem:

US Trade Deficit Can't Go Down Without Reduction of Imbalance with Europe – Lighthizer

Those damn Europeans! If they willingly capitulated and gave the USA their own industries on a silver plate, we wouldn't have the need to threaten them with tarriffs!

Posted by: vk | Dec 17 2019 16:04 utc | 93

On the trade deal between China and the US.
According to IMF this will boost chinese growth by 0,2 % to total of 6 % next year.

According to a material that i saw in WP, the combined effects from the new North America deal plus the US-China deal should boost the US growth by 0,5 % to total of 2,5 %.

Losers from the deal: the rest of the world. If China buys additional 200$ billion in US goods and services that means that the rest of the world will lose something similar in exports to China. EU alone will probably lose 70 billion in exports to China.

This is all under condition that China will actually buy those goods and services, and there are many unknowns about this.

More time and clarity about the deal is needed to fully analyse this.

US gains from the deal will not be able to stop US decline as it will have to massively cut spending (or raise taxes) by 2025 due to the still massive debt levels.

In the long term though, since Made in China program is continuing, this will lead to US losses in the China market. By 2027, China will start replacing Boeing with its own aircraft. At that point, it will be building most of its semiconductors. It will also buy less and less US IT hardware and software.

So overall the US tech sector and high tech US exporters will be the losers.

We will see decoupling in the IT sector.

By 2030, in my estimates, China should be clearly economically stronger than the US and we will finally enter multipolarity.

Expect very chaotic 2020s as power transition will be taking place.

Posted by: Passer by | Dec 17 2019 17:07 utc | 94

For those curious about cryptocurrency - a credible (to me) breakdown on what likely happened at Quadriga. Short summary: founders are both long-standing scammers.
Quadriga breakdown by Vanity Fair

Posted by: c1ue | Dec 17 2019 17:30 utc | 95

Another very interesting commentary from Umair: US and UK death spiral
Short summary: By squeezing everyone so much that the average and median American/Brit is barely surviving, a negative reinforcement loop is created where no one can afford to take care of themselves, much less help each other. This in turn causes overall society to degrade: trust, infrastructure, education, social cohesiveness, etc. which in turn further degrades individual's lives. Lather, rise, repeat.
Pretty much what I've been thinking is happening all along, but much more eloquently stated.

Posted by: c1ue | Dec 17 2019 17:51 utc | 96

Sasha @85--

The term paleoconservative was coined to demarcate such people from neoconservatives, with the former imbued with the political and social values of traditional conservatism, a credo that's actually antiwar and pro-peace, which is diametrically opposed to the neoconservative doctrine, which is actually quite radical. Other demarcations exist as well, but what I've described is the most important and visible, IMO.

Traditional Conservatism is a longstanding global credo based around family, community and church (although the religion worshiped could be any type, not just Abrahamic), and is closely tied to its agrarian roots. Change is fine as long as it promotes family and community. Look at the US Constitution's Preamble, and you'll read such Conservative doctrine.

Formerly T-Bear @88--

Must second your appraisal and answer to juliania.

Must call attention to Federico Pieraccini's Strategic Culture article "Never Trust a Failing Empire". I used part of this article in dealing with the veracity issue thread as the title clearly signals it's about credibility, the lack of which is one facet that makes the Outlaw US Empire Evil. Here's a teaser:

"False or carefully manipulated reports paint a picture vastly different from the reality on the ground. The United States has never really declared war on Islamic terrorism, its proclamations of a 'War on Terror' notwithstanding. In reality, it has simply used this justification to occupy or destabilize strategically important areas of the world in the interests of maintaining US hegemony, intending in so doing to hobble the energy policies and national security of rival countries like China, Iran and the Russian Federation.

"The Post investigation lays bare how the US strategy had failed since its inception, the data doctored to represent a reality very different from that on the ground. The inability of the United States to clean up Afghanistan is blamed by the Post on incorrect military planning and incorrect political choices. While this could certainly be the case, the Post’s real purpose in its investigation is to harm Trump, even as it reveals the Pentagon’s efforts to continue its regional presence for grand geopolitical goals by hiding inconvenient truths."

Posted by: karlof1 | Dec 17 2019 18:11 utc | 97

@juliania #87
I do find it amusing that you reference Alexander Hamilton - the O.G. American bankster - as a source of Constitutional authority.
There is a direct line between the Imperial presidency today and what Hamilton pushed all his life for, 240+ years ago.

Posted by: c1ue | Dec 17 2019 18:27 utc | 98

Well, what an interesting how do you do to discover Martin Wolf, chief economics commentator at The Financial Times, has written a two-part editorial, "How to reform today's rigged capitalism," I discovered by reading this Global Times op/ed, "Listening to the call to save capitalism". Wolf's editorials might be behind paywalls here for pt.1 and here for pt.w2. I was finally able to access them via Wolf's Twitter. The title to his second part is "Martin Wolf: why rigged capitalism is damaging liberal democracy." Why this is so we've discussed at length here via the writings of Dr. Hudson, whom Wolf is essentially channeling in my quick skimming of his opinions. In the lead for part 2, Wolf writes:

"The answer needs to start with acknowledgment of the fact that something has gone very wrong. Over the past four decades, and especially in the US, the most important country of all, we have observed an unholy trinity of slowing productivity growth, soaring inequality and huge financial shocks." [My Emphasis]

And here is his Hudsonian answer:

"So why is the economy not delivering? The answer lies, in large part, with the rise of rentier capitalism. In this case 'rent' means rewards over and above those required to induce the desired supply of goods, services, land or labour. 'Rentier capitalism' means an economy in which market and political power allows privileged individuals and businesses to extract a great deal of such rent from everybody else." [My Emphasis]

It should be noted that Wolf's opinions were republished by many organs of the global financial press in sharp contrast to Hudson who's been writing in this topic for decades--almost 50 years now in fact!! Well, at least the problem's finally being acknowledged. The Global Times writer provides this partial interpretation:

"Redistribution is the remedy for inequality; this is the theoretical framework Western establishment elites rigidly observe. They have no plans to rise beyond capitalist logic and the solutions to tackle inequality are well within the boundary of capitalism. However, their criticism is a stark revelation of today's social reality. As Wolf puts it, 'Money buys politicians. This is plutocracy, not democracy.' He puts political reform ahead of economic reform. Without political reform, change in the way money in politics works and how the media works, the much needed reforms in other areas won't take place." [My Emphasis]

Golly Gee Whiz! Such political reform's been demanded since the 1960s, and essentially was again demanded in a somewhat differing context by Sanders just yesterday--but only Sanders and Gabbard have floated the requirement for such reform, at least until now that Martin Wolf has joined them.

Posted by: karlof1 | Dec 17 2019 19:20 utc | 99

@ karlof1 | Dec 17 2019 18:11 utc | 97

Acknowledging, Thanks.

@ 99

A factor not acknowledged in almost all economic discourse is law and its provisions; contract law, tort law have great bearing on the development of economic structures and processes. Anyone professing economics that has not read Sir Henry Sumner Maine's Ancient Law cannot be considered fully educated (as harsh as that sounds is a truth) as the beginnings and development of (Roman) law is fundamental to all modern organisation, from family, to corporate, to legal fictions without which no economic edifice can function. One needs be familiar with law to analyse the disfunction of organisation, otherwise no valid conclusion as to source of error can be drawn. Having Sumner Maine as reference the great dislocation that has occurred in professional language can easily be observed and taken into account. YMMV

Posted by: Formerly T-Bear | Dec 17 2019 20:21 utc | 100

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