Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
February 28, 2021

The MoA Week In Review - OT 2021-017

Last week's posts at Moon of Alabama:

1TVNewsAF @1TVNewsAF - 6:32 UTC · Feb 28, 2021
Sirajuddin Haqqani warns of never-seen-before fight if foreign troops don't exit Afghanistan by May.
"Today...we have the technology to use drones, we have our own missiles. This time if the Mujahideen resume fighting the enemies, it would be something they have never seen before."
Glenn Greenwald @ggreenwald - 15:03 UTC · Feb 24, 2021
It took only two years to go from disappearing Milo and Alex Jones to banning content said to "amplify narratives that undermine faith in NATO."
Imagine where the line will be two years from now.
Censorship is an intoxicating power that endlessly expands until it's smashed.

Other issues:

Use as open thread ...

Posted by b on February 28, 2021 at 13:50 UTC | Permalink

« previous page

Whitney Webb is lifting the veil from another Biden cabinet appointee.

Eric Lander has some mansplaining to do and seems to need regular showers to remove some past blemishes:

"Aside from the intelligence connections via Silicon Valley and Jeffrey Epstein, Lander has also courted controversy for a controversial toast he led in honor of eugenicist James Dewey Watson in 2018. On Watson’s ninetieth birthday, Lander praised Watson for “inspiring all of us to push the frontiers of science to benefit humankind.” Watson, though best remembered as the codiscoverer of the DNA double-helix structure, was also a notorious eugenicist who stated his belief that people of African descent have genetically inferior intelligence on numerous occasions. Watson first began to retreat from public life in 2007, when he told the BBC that Western government projects in Africa were likely to fail because “all our social policies are based on the fact that their intelligence is the same as ours — whereas all the testing says not really."

Whitney Webb concludes that "Given the association with eugenicists like Jeffrey Epstein and J. D. Watson, it is essential to spread awareness of these ties while Lander awaits Senate confirmation, since the Senate could be pressured by the public to raise these issues at Lander’s upcoming confirmation hearing. Yet, the fact that Lander was even nominated for this position, particularly following the Epstein scandal, is stunning; he should have been investigated and, at minimum, blacklisted from holding public office. Lander’s nomination to such a prominent post is unsettling confirmation of the continued influence and power of the network that not only created Jeffrey Epstein but financed and protected his nefarious activities for decades."

Not a word for some time on how the six star accommodation is holding up for Ghislaine Maxwell. Can any barflies point to some news or has that lost its importance?

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Mar 3 2021 9:40 utc | 201

Texas oil is missing.

The whole world is paying for the blundering ignorance of Texas. The ignorant palookas who run the oil refineries in Texas cashed in on low energy rates and forgot to consider certainty of energy supply. So their cheapskating in conjunction with the Texas government economic buffoons plus a cold snap has resulted in no production and the rest of the world paying through the nose.

Bloomberg news reports "More than 4 million barrels a day of output -- almost 40% of the nation’s crude production -- is now offline, according to traders and executives. One of the world’s biggest oil refining centers has seen output drastically cut back. The waterways that help U.S. oil flow to the rest of the world have been disrupted for much of the week."

And there is this delightful gem that begs the question: maybe the Russians are refining fast and furious to meet demand :)) "And though headline crude futures are at their highest level in over a year, they’re yet to rip higher because the loss of refining capacity is equally acute. The country’s largest plant has closed, and at least 3 million barrels a day of processing got taken offline. Traders are rushing to send millions of barrels of diesel across the Atlantic to the U.S., a potential boon for Europe’s downtrodden refining industry."

Reuters propaganda service reports that "Shale oil producers in the southern United States could take at least two weeks to restart the more than 2 million barrels per day (bpd) of crude output that shut down because of cold weather, as frozen pipes and power supply interruptions slow their recovery, sources said."

Now if you were a German government official you might be sorely tempted to consider Nord Stream 2 as a good hedge against supply uncertainty from the USA. If you were a Polish government official you might need to get someone to change your adult diaper after having commenced spending on all those new LNG terminals to accept 'cheap' USA gas.

The Azeritimes reports "US drillers in the Permian Basin have already restored about 80% of crude output after the big freeze, although refiners find a return to normal more tricky. Impacts from the cold blast have also hit Asia, where plastic makers face surging prices for key feedstocks after American processors were shuttered, Report informs, citing angi.

Perhaps the Asian plastic manufacturers need to get a reliable Iranian supplier to assist.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Mar 3 2021 10:40 utc | 202

Posted by: karlof1 | Mar 2 2021 22:58 utc | 178

I read Mitchener’s The Drifters long time ago too, Torremolinos a small fishing village on the Malaga coast. But for you to have an idea how the world has changed, Torremolinos now a days is like San Francisco silicon valley compared with San Francisco hippie era, an absolutely different universe.

Salamanca is a lot more stable, a beautiful university city full of young people and incredible stone monuments. I wish I had been a student there, the perfect place to fall in love each and everyday.

Posted by: Paco | Mar 3 2021 14:31 utc | 203

File this under the shit show continues

Tit for Tat or something more?.....this was at the Ain al-Asad airbase

Posted by: psychohistorian | Mar 3 2021 15:50 utc | 204

Canada is 'Building Back Better' too...

Ottawa Conference on Security and Defence

"We contend that the rules-based international order on which global peace and security rests is under strain and needs defending now more than ever..."

Posted by: John Gilberts | Mar 3 2021 16:01 utc | 205

willie @198--

Thanks for your reply! As we know, it's possible to manipulate art to arrive at different levels of interpretation. The lack of Native Americans in the genre points to its exposing the motifs of Imperialism as viewed from outside the Outlaw Empire. The John Ford Westerns are in a different class given what they examine. It's sad the greater public missed the greater messages many sent about Class relations and the resultant reality. But those days are all done since the vast majority of films produced in the Outlaw Empire are now propagandistic.

There're reasons the Classics are Classics in all art forms. The abandonment of the Classical Canon in favor of an abstract Political Correctness 40+ years ago IMO was a huge mistake or triumph depending on POV. Both my mom and her sister taught for 40+ years and greatly lamented what they saw occurring and said we'd be much poorer as a nation as a result. IMO, they were both 100% correct and the result is ever present in the extremely idiotic happenings we see occur daily.

Posted by: karlof1 | Mar 3 2021 17:04 utc | 206

uncle tungsten @ 201

Cannot remember where I read this but it showed up within past week. Also don’t know and can’t navigate the reddit system. Did get far enough into the search to find that many posters are currently discussing the case. It would seem Maxwell was and is at position number 8 in the redditor moderator universe and has held that for years. Goes by screen name of maxwell hill. When she was “arrested” her account had a hiatus of about a week, is now alive and posting constantly. Make of that what you will. I have never believed she is in custody any more than I believed Epstein was deceased.

Posted by: oldhippie | Mar 3 2021 17:17 utc | 207

Paco @203--

Thanks for your reply! About 20 years ago prior to relocating to Oregon we looked at properties in Spain despite knowing we wouldn't move there. It was a good exercise though. Still have places to go in North America, some of which I'll get to in our vacation in April.

uncle tungsten @202--

Fuel prices here are up 25% YTD, and I expect them to rise another 25% this month alone. Y/Y increase of 100% is entirely possible as the Ponzi/Fracking Scheme goes bust. Venezuela needs to become very prepared with lots of anti-ship and air defense missile systems.

Posted by: karlof1 | Mar 3 2021 17:20 utc | 208

@ 152 / 197 juliania

sorry juliania! i did miss your post at 152... i guess i got caught up in the scotland topic and didn't see that you have replied to me! my apologies!

i suppose it has to do with my interpretation of all of that... i have always felt that we can't see it, but that god does rule the world, in spite of our inability to see this clearly... those who are put in power - the caesers of the world - appear to have some say over things of the world, but ultimately they don't... i can't explain my belief any better then that, although i could probably talk about it for hours and my wife would have long since left the room, lolol!

the concept of the parable of the prodigal sons is very evocative... i have always enjoyed it... i think if the big banks weren't bailed, the fear was the whole system would come tumbling down.. it is that fragile... them getting bailed means nothing... i don't believe hudson is talking about that kind of debt forgiveness either.. but i do believe that our gov'ts greater debt burdon is much more about what this is about... instead of our gov't being allowed to print its own money and not be beholden to a private financial system, it is.... i can't see it ending well... but that is where the debt forgiveness has to happen.. in fact, my feeling is this present financial system is going to implode and debt forgiveness will happen instantaneously when this happens... they will have to start over from scratch... hopefully a better system will be made to serve all people, as opposed to a select few.. but i am a dreamer, lol... maybe this is the prodigal son - our banking system - that has to finally realize how on the wrong track it is - a track of greed with no concern or compassion for others.... until this prodigal son wakes up - i suspect it will continue on in this track... cheers and thanks for the ongoing conversation... and yes - the book is fantastic!

Posted by: james | Mar 3 2021 17:58 utc | 209

Putin today conducted the annual extended meeting of the Russian Interior Ministry Board which focused on several main areas all under the main umbrella of Crime: Cybercrime in a very wide context including that occurring on Social Media with a special focus aimed at this:

"The fact that every fourth crime committed by adolescents is a serious or especially grave crime is an alarming signal for absolutely everyone, for the whole society. Special attention should be paid to this."

And that the recruiting for such crimes often occurs via Social Media. Twitter is already in trouble over this as it refuses to perform. Security for the upcoming Duma elections was also discussed with the FSB as much meddling is anticipated. Drunk driving and associated road and pedestrian deaths got emphasis I hadn't seen before. In closing, Putin made the following observation and request:

"At the same time, we really have to note a rise in recorded crime in some constituent entities of Russia, in big cities, in large regions. I do not have to list them now because you certainly know about it, the Minister knows about it. I ask you, I earnestly ask you to pay more attention to this and find out why this is happening, identify the reasons, find them, and respond accordingly."

IMO, his request directly relates to what was said in his opening remarks:

"The fight against extremism should be given the most serious attention. Please resolutely stop any propaganda of nationalism, xenophobia, religious strife and violence and bring to account the instigators who escape and hide away, and when caught red-handed, show remorse, although they seduce people into illegal actions."

Clearly, Putin wants Russia's security forces to all be prepared for the attempts to disrupt and destabilize the nation during the run up to the elections which are already occurring with the Navalny gambit. The election is scheduled for mid-September.

Posted by: karlof1 | Mar 3 2021 18:25 utc | 210

China's biggest annual political event--the Two Sessions--is about to take place. Here's a report about its first presser. This is significant:

"The sessions would be two days longer than last year's. When the two sessions began last year, China still recorded single-digital increase in new coronavirus cases, with four new confirmed cases on May 21, 2020. But now the Chinese mainland has recorded zero domestically-transmitted new cases for consecutive 16 days....

"'This meeting comes at a very special time in our country's development, as it's the starting year for new development tasks and goals,' Li said.

"Among the packed policy agenda, the focus will be on what the country aims to achieve in terms of economic growth this year and beyond, the expert added.

"Besides growth targets, a number of issues including the Hong Kong political reforms, defense budget, high quality growth, public health system, and self-reliance on high-tech are expected to top the agenda of this year's meetings. And compared with last year's two sessions when proposals on how to curb the COVID-19 epidemic, filling the loopholes on the country's health crisis response mechanism and improving its medical system flooded on the internet, this year's two sessions will emphasize hot social issues including vaccine management, medical care, housing, education, personal information security and employment....

"The fourth session of NPC, the country's top legislature, is scheduled to open on Friday, with a schedule including a review of a blueprint for China's development in the next five to 15 years -- the draft outline of the 14th Five-Year Plan and the long-range objectives through the year 2035, in addition to hearing the annual work reports of the government, top legislature, top court and top procuratorate." [My Emphasis]

The confidence held by Chinese in themselves and their government shouldn't be underestimated for it's at a very high level. I hope the reporting of this event in English will surpass that of last year as I'm curious to see what's prioritized.

Posted by: karlof1 | Mar 3 2021 18:40 utc | 211

- Coup in North Korea ?????????????????????????????????????

Posted by: Willy2 | Mar 3 2021 18:45 utc | 212

The confidence held by Chinese in themselves and their government shouldn't be underestimated for it's at a very high level. I hope the reporting of this event in English will surpass that of last year as I'm curious to see what's prioritized.

Posted by: karlof1 | Mar 3 2021 18:40 utc | 211

Yes, the Chinese outperformance against the pandemic was a huge win in terms of social morale, you might say, and I expect they will now build on it and show everybody what they can do. And everything we have done in the meantime has only helped emphasize the point, the Chinese really have their shit together now, and we don't. They could not have scripted it better themselves. Trump was a gift to our "enemies", an extra four years to prepare, an extra four years of decay, and then COVID came along ...

In a way you can say he did what he was elected to do, to "send them a message", upset their applecart, get some payback..

And would Hillary have been better? I don't think so. She is crazier than Trump.

Posted by: Bemildred | Mar 3 2021 19:17 utc | 213

Bemildred #213

Trump was a gift to our "enemies", an extra four years to prepare, an extra four years of decay, and then COVID came along ...

In a way you can say he did what he was elected to do, to "send them a message", upset their applecart, get some payback..

Trump wiped the lipstick off the USAi pig.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Mar 3 2021 20:44 utc | 214

Jan 6, 2021
the "armed insurrection"
without guns.

When asked by Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) about whether firearms were recovered or if any suspect was charged with firearms offenses, FBI counterterrorism chief Jill Sanborn responded: “To my knowledge, none.”

Posted by: librul | Mar 3 2021 23:26 utc | 215

News on Navalny. Already in prison, in the quarantine zone. Thus no access to mail and prison store. Attorneys visited him. The yard for walking seems to lack exercise equipment (I do not know what is "turnik"). The room, shared with two non-violent inmates, lacks basic conveniences like refrigerator and teapot. (The latter is cruel, a Russian without a samovar is an unhappy Russian). There is a TV set, but the news are biased. (from Tweets, translated by me)

Seems that Putin, always a tightwad, used the reduction in prison population to close "colonies" in the arctic regions.

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Mar 3 2021 23:55 utc | 216

Space-X Blows Up Again. At least it's consistent. The private replacement for NASA rockets is experiencing the same sorts of failures as early NASA rockets in the 1960s leaving Russia and China with no competition in the project to establish a moon colony by 2030.

Posted by: karlof1 | Mar 4 2021 0:41 utc | 217

Thanks, james @ 209, sorry to distract you from more important (and enjoyable!) pursuits. I didn't get in on the Scottish problem; it sounds fascinating from the names, but I'm at a loss until I read how it all began - will have to go back and read when I can get time to do that. On the banks, they went into areas they should not have done, so yes, that was prodigal of them in a sense. But that to me is passing the buck, as I don't really believe in the entity theory that I know karlof1 is investigating -- I'll grab onto the mantra --- "banks are people too!" But in my sense of that, it is the individuals who have to realize what they are doing is wrong, whether by having it boomerang on them, or simply by recognizing their own complicity in what the group they belong to is doing. A wonderful short novel by John Steinbeck has that theme, "The Winter of Our Discontent" dealing with a guy who is bending the rules and sees what the consequences have been for his children, whom he loves, but only at the very last page of the novel... well, I won't give what happens away.

Steinbeck wrote that soon after the quiz show scandal when Charles Van Doren was revealed to have been a fraud on "21". That was big when I was entering college. We've come a long way since then, sadly. Good movie made of it, though.

Posted by: juliania | Mar 4 2021 3:00 utc | 218

Sergei Skripal, where art thou, Sergei?

The Blogmire refreshes the tale with a mighty good piece and it contains the details that will bring novices and old hands up to date in a fine entertaining report.

here is a snip to whet your whistle: "I have titled this piece, The Disappearing Spy, and for good reason. Of all the glaring issues in the deception put forward by the British authorities, the single biggest is the fact that Sergei Skripal, alleged victim of nerve agent poisoning, has not been seen or heard of since. Nor has a statement ever been issued on his behalf. This is extraordinary odd, given the enormity of the story at the time, and the huge opportunities an interview or even a few snaps would have presented to the authorities and media to milk the story even more.

There are only two possible explanations for this:

The first is that it has been deemed too dangerous for him to be seen. However, three other high profile cases may help to put this explanation into perspective. Firstly, when Alexander Litvinenko was poisoned by Polonium-210, it was not deemed too dangerous for photographs of him to be taken in his hospital bed and plastered all over the media. Secondly, after Yulia Skripal’s apparent departure from Salisbury District Hospital, it was not deemed too dangerous for a statement to be released on her behalf, and for her to subsequently appear on camera (most probably at a US Airbase) looking remarkably well for a victim of nerve agent poisoning, reading a pre-prepared statement. Thirdly, it was not deemed too dangerous for a recent alleged victim of “Novichok” poisoning, Alexei Navalny, to not only appear on camera, but travel back to Moscow. All three of these cases make a nonsense of any idea that it was too dangerous for Mr Skripal to make an appearance. A video at a secret location would have done. A photo at his hospital bedside would have sufficed (everyone knew that location, so it could hardly have given his location away to take a snap of him there). Even a brief statement would have been something. But nothing. Zero. Nada. Zilch."

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Mar 4 2021 4:13 utc | 219

Has anyone noticed the englanders, never ones to dream up new tactics until the old ones are clearly dead in the water, have regurgitated the white helmets in Myanmar - according to the grauniad, englanders need to be upset that the Myanmar police who recognised the ploy, gave these traitors a bit of a slap.

Posted by: Debsisdead | Mar 4 2021 5:07 utc | 220

Yes Debs at 220, the CBC radio quick news blurb yesterday or today mentioned White Helmets; also said something about protestors throwing Molotov cocktails and police firing and "hurling" tear gas and maybe smoke bombs into the crowd. Fair and balanced, violence on each side?

The White Helmets as I recall were said to be helping the victims.

All I thought at the time is color revolution and propaganda, nothing to see here. But the White Helmets mention in a 15-second news update was interesting. They are still with us it seems.

Posted by: jonku | Mar 4 2021 5:21 utc | 221

After watching the video I am appalled at the violence as the police kicked the sitting arrested white helmets in the head.

It is disturbing, what do you think Debs? Is it okay for the propagandists to get beat up?

Maybe you can say live by the sword, die by the sword.

Any violence is upsetting. Some might say they get what they deserve, and your opinion above seems that the reason for this footage emerging is simply to ensure that "englanders need to be upset that the Myanmar police who recognised the ploy, gave these traitors a bit of a slap".

Oh the wonder of constant surveillance, that can show us what really happens in the world.

I didn't watch the many shock and awe shows, or myriad beheadings and blowing up of people.

This one really got me, maybe it's not even real.

Posted by: jonku | Mar 4 2021 5:34 utc | 222

I thought the violence was real and rather low key for dealing with a gang of thugs hired by a foreign power to betray their nation. Yep they hit them hard, but let us not forget the incredible damage & killings these same white helmets wreaked in Syria. They have to be nipped in the bud asap which is undoubtedly why the slapping was allowed to be filmed, to show others what would happen to those foolish and unpatriotic enough to take the englander quid or the amerikan buck to sell out their nation.
Reading the details of what happened wednesday it seems the traitors formed a mob which tried to disrupt a prison transport. At first Myanmar police used tear gas which caused a lot to disperse, but after a coupla hours they used rubber bullets, continually asking the crowd to disperse, by rubber bullet time finito, the vast majority had but some didn't so after hours of resisting the rioters they fired live rounds over their heads.
The government isn't behaving at all like the empire's allies in Thailand do, that is killing everyone, they just want to let these fools sucked into a colour revolution know they are on a loser.
Yep one of the white helmets may have some broken bones but if that prevents others from being killed by the inevitable bombings USuk will ramp this up into, then that is a fair enough response IMO.

Posted by: Debsisdead | Mar 4 2021 5:54 utc | 223

The last thing any nation needs is 'white helmets' running about doing 'creative' deaths for little children.

I am sure every police and military security service throughout the world is fully aware of the vicious infanticides wreaked by the white helmets in Aleppo and other Syrian cities. White helmets are child kidnappers and murderers and that is their kit, its what they do if enabled and tolerated to run amok. They are evidently pretty classy at stabbing 12 month old babies in the heart with syringes.

I doubt the nationalist Buddhist people of Myanmar will be too happy about the pantomime of renowned sunni Islam child killers in their midst. This is a color revolution PR fail that didn't even factor in the national religious circumstance and so it indicates it was cooked up in the UK embassy.

The mere presence of a 'white helmet' is a clear indicator that a crime against humanity is about to visit the citizens in your neighbourhood. Expect a vigorous police response. Some would actually demand a vigorous police response after seeing the slaughter of the children carried out by 'white helmets' in Syria.

Did the grauniad mention that Responsibility to Protect angle? ... Didn't think so.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Mar 4 2021 6:08 utc | 224

@ jonku

That violence deters greater violence, these white helmets have no qualm in supporting air strikes in the name of "freedom" and "human rights".

Posted by: Smith | Mar 4 2021 6:12 utc | 225

karlof1 #217

Space-X Blows Up Again. At least it's consistent. The private replacement for NASA rockets is experiencing the same sorts of failures as early NASA rockets in the 1960s leaving Russia and China with no competition in the project to establish a moon colony by 2030.

Looked ok to me - it went up and returned to earth. Besides, the only parts they were testing was fire extinguishers and obviously they worked.

I do not expect anything else from the privatised, oligarch managed, space exploration program of Elon Musk and his incredibly clever team. The buckling and splitting of the pointy end can be easily remedied with some light weight nano fibreglass(TM) sheet and auto putty. All good so far ;))

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Mar 4 2021 6:25 utc | 226

Ref Navalny: Chad and Niger have had no internet for 2 weeks because it is election times and naturally, opponents are arrested, have their partisans or relatives killed etc.
But these are major allies of France so you won't read it on the MSM. RFI speaks about it and even interviews the opponent as part of the "democratic game" of air time, but fortunately it seems all the major media make a point of not quoting RFI.
And Macron receives Ouatarra today in Paris.. just a few days before parliament elections in the Ivory coast... Interference anyone?

Posted by: Mina | Mar 4 2021 8:16 utc | 227

Mina #227

I am not the slightest bit surprised. France is a wretched colonialist scumbag administration and has been for decades. No different to the UKUSAi IMO. Niger and Chad need a socialist government but all that is permitted is one kleptocracy after another.

The African scene is going to have a mighty rough time through the Biden maladministration as there will be no end to colour revolutions or ISIS where they don't like a government. Then there will be death squads roaming about when they consider you a friendly government that needs to clear out 'terrorist cells'.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Mar 4 2021 8:28 utc | 228

Pepe Escobar gives us a tale of two lovers and their eternal struggle with intolerance.

Pepe's tale recounts "in the beginning, they were the Bamiyan Buddhas: the Western Buddha statue, 55 meters high, and the Eastern, 38 meters high, carved for decades since 550 A.D. from porous sandstone cliffs, the intricate details modeled in clay mixed with straw and coated with stucco.

Xuanzang, the legendary traveling monk of the early Tang dynasty who journeyed to India in search of Buddhist manuscripts, saw them in all their – colored – glory in the 7th century.

Then, with Islam taking over these high central lands of Afghanistan, local Hazara folklore slowly turned them into the Romeo and Juliet of the Hindu Kush.

They became “Solsol” (“year after year”, or, more colloquially, the prince of Bamiyan) and “Shahmana” (“the king’s Mother”, or colloquially a princess from a remote kingdom). As lovers, they could not be united as a couple in this world; so they chose to turn into statues and stand close to each other forever."

After reading this tale it is clear that the Taliban can never be reconciled with the presence of a restoration on this site. So it is up to artists and sculptors throughout the planet to create new installations to keep the tale of the Buddhas and the wish for peace and unity alive. May a thousand Bamiyan Buddhas bloom.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Mar 4 2021 9:13 utc | 229

Strategic Culture has an excellent brief report by Ramona Wadi looking at contemporary tensions in Australian celebrations of the arrival of the englanders and their immediate assault on and decimation of the Aboriginal culture that had flourished and cultivated this land for somewhere near 70,000 years. That's a long time to develop an intimate knowledge of living successfully and clearly sustainably on the lend. And that is exactly what the Aboriginal people did do and the earliest reports of explorers and surveyors and some pastoralist adventurers from england show a profound agricultural knowledge and animal management regime was in place.

Others tried desperately to erase that culture and that history as it was critical to the foundation of englander land theft to assert that no one lived there and those aboriginal people had no connection to anything.

Ramona Wadi reports "Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison described the day as “the moment where the journey to our modern nation began.” Such discourse of modernisation has been used in other colonial contexts – the legitimisation of destroying one history and people to impose a purportedly superior and industrialised culture. Establishing such settler dominance, alongside the economic exploitation of colonised territory, is the first step towards the political oblivion of the indigenous population. Indigenous resistance, often times organised belatedly upon realisation of the settler-colonial intent and politics, is then used as a pretext upon which to dehumanise and massacre the indigenous population. The colonial narrative, however, blames indigenous populations for their decline, once again exploiting the concept of modernisation to cultivate impunity."

The arrogance of the current Australian PM is abysmal and demonstrates his racist desperation to ignore contemporary science and analysis of the extraordinary cultural continuity and respect that enabled Aboriginal people to continue for tens of thousands of years free from regular warfare. The research by Karl-Erik Svieby and Tex Sculthorpe is foundation material that explores the detail of how these extraordinary people built a culture of peace and sustainability around the core concept of the responsibility of the individual to act for the betterment of all. This responsibility was often carried over into strong affiliation between Aboriginal Elders and the trade union movement. I had the great honour of working very closely with such people over decades and their commitment to solidarity and the honest telling of their extraordinary forbears capacity and their achievements is inspiring.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Mar 4 2021 11:11 utc | 230

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Mar 4 2021 11:11 utc | 230

Yes, I think the biggest sin of our cultural forefathers ("the West") was not all the killing, though that is bad enough, but their ignorant and needy lack of respect and/or attention paid to the vast seas of painfully acquired cultural knowledge of the world, just thrown away, like we threw away the chance for global peace and security after WWII (and WWI too for that matter), because of an infantile need to dominate the world instead. It's like your thumb deciding to conquer you. Dumb does not cover it.

Posted by: Bemildred | Mar 4 2021 11:29 utc | 231

MI6 appears to recognise they overplayed their hand getting the graun to release a video of white helmets copping their comeuppance, as the vid I linked to upthread is no longer publically available, YOUTUBE have marked it 'private' - only to be viewed by people signed in to google who are on their 'approved' list.
After I saw that I went to the graun site and I cannot see the article there any longer. Maybe if someone already has that article in their browser history they will be able to revisit. I dunno cos my history automatically deletes nowadays.

Anyway the englanders must have decided that it becoming public knowledge that they have inflicted white helmet terrorists on Myanmar may not be such a good look.

Posted by: Debsisdead | Mar 4 2021 12:22 utc | 232

Posted by: karlof1 | Mar 4 2021 0:41 utc | 217

They seems to be using a spike engine, and I can see why. The Russians were working with them I know, but no idea how far they got with it. Anyway, it's no surprise they are having troubles, this is not well-known territory. The fact they even got a solid landing is a big deal.

Posted by: Bemildred | Mar 4 2021 13:34 utc | 233

@ uncle tungsten

Nah, I'm sure the Taliban can reconcile, as long as their people are fed.
As Biswapriya Purkayastha explained in the comment of that very own article.
"The Taliban themselves said why and warned at great length that they would do it before they did it. And they did it because in 2001 Afghanistan was suffering severe drought and food shortage, yet the UN did not send money or food aid. Yet the same UN was more than willing to allocate funds for the preservation of the two statues. That is why."

That seems to be a pretty good reason to me. I'm a Buddhist sympathizer, but no statue, castle or houses, even of historical significance, should come before human life, that's not what Buddha himself wanted.

Posted by: Smith | Mar 4 2021 14:11 utc | 234

karlof1 @ 206, I see the art you are referring to is film art, and I would suggest there are some recent pro native American films that are not the 'spaghetti westerns' you refer to, though you are probably correct not many so far. I do believe it is a good area for films to venture into - we need to know more about those cultures which still exist in this country. Lack of funding would be the issue. But "Dances with Wolves" was very popular in its heyday, and to my mind the different tribes and customs ought to be featured more as a healing process for the country at large. We know that the Iriquois federation gave its egalitarian structure to the early founders in the US as an example of good governance, so more historical movies of this sort should and I hope will be forthcoming, perhaps as native writers begin to produce classic form fictional sagas of those times. Here in the western states many authors are beginning to probe these subjects, mostly in short novel form. But as you know, that style of literature is by no means classical; publishing is in the same sad condition as are the other arts. I look forward to the demise of the lowest forms, and the return to the classical, deeper treatments that are not out for immediate profit.

To willie, I will respond that "The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly" appears on the same film channel I watch "Dances with Wolves" on -- much prefer the latter. And I should say I don't have cable, can't afford it, so my observations are limited; maybe something is going on there that I don't know about.

Posted by: juliania | Mar 4 2021 15:44 utc | 235

I am lazy this morning and want to get this link from Ellen Brown's Web of Debt blog so its not formatted correctly

Contact your local legislators and tell them to pass public banking initiatives.

Posted by: psychohistorian | Mar 4 2021 16:28 utc | 236

Thanks to those who provided the news about White Helmet activity in Myanmar. The propaganda I saw in my local newspaper is similar to what we saw at the start of the war on Syria. Kudos to the Chinese and Russian advisors to Myanmar. It appears that our thinking's been confirmed that the Outlaw Empire will use its Terrorist Foreign Legion to disrupt BRI plans wherever it can and not worry about the consequences.

Posted by: karlof1 | Mar 4 2021 17:27 utc | 237

This is an extremely interesting paper which looks at the East India Company (EIC) internal records to try to gain an understanding of colonial exploitation of India by the EIC and later, the UK:
Measuring Colonial Extraction: The East India Company’s Rule and the Drain of Wealth (1757–1858)

Some excerpts

Mughal rulers before Akbar (1556–1605) requested between one-quarter and one-sixth of the land’s produce. Under Akbar, the bar was raised to about one-third of the harvest of food grains and one-fifth of valuable sale-able crops, such as indigo, tobacco, poppy, and so on.41 This rate applied to the provinces of “Hindustan” (the territory from Lahor to Allahabad). Outside these provinces, Akbar demanded one-half of all agricultural produce.42 During the reign of Shahjahan (1628–1658), a fifty percent levy was imposed on cotton, barley, gram, and mustard seed, and one-third levy on wheat, rice, pulses, and rapeseed. In the same period, the peasants of Gujarat and Surat paid three-quarters of their crops in taxes. Later, Aurangzeb (1658–1707) ordered that land revenue should amount to half the produce across the empire.43 Therefore, quantitative evidence seems to show that, during Mughal rule, taxation of the land’s produce was both high and increasing.

Available evidence suggests that the EIC not only kept land taxation high, but even raised it to new heights in some territories. According to Peter Marshall, for instance, in the early 1790s land revenue in Bengal and Orissa was 20 percent higher in real terms than it had been in 1757.44 In 1795, the EIC’s assistant collector of revenues in India, Henry Thomas Colebrooke, calculated that in some districts cultivators paid more than half of their gross produce and in others more than a quarter.45 In Madras, the first land tax that the EIC imposed in 1765 was half of the land’s gross produce.46 But in 1817, the Madras Revenue Board assessed the government’s share of the land’s produce as “in some districts as high as 60 or 70 percent of the whole.”47 According to Dutt, land tax in Madras was too high, so in the 1820s the EIC reduced it gradually to one-third of the gross produce. But a [End Page 164] more rigorously systematic collection was simultaneously applied, so that, in the end, total land revenues actually increased.48

Focusing on the so-called Ceded and Conquered Provinces that began to be acquired in 1801 and were later known as the North-Western Provinces, Michael Mann reports a high increase in land taxation under the EIC.49 The assessment (jama) of the first two years following acquisition (1801–1802) was the same as the previous jama performed by the nawab of Oude, but after that, between 1803 and 1805, the EIC raised land revenue rates. In the “ceded territories,” land taxes went up by 24 percent in comparison with rates in 1801. In the “conquered provinces,” land taxes were 75 percent higher in 1805–1808 than in 1803–1804. For the Ceded and Conquered Provinces as a whole, land revenue rose more than 50 percent between 1803–1804 and 1817–1818. Indeed, in 1844, the Directions for Settlement Officers of the North-Western Provinces defined the assessment as “two-thirds of what may be expected to be the net produce.”50

A land revenue amounting to half of total agricultural production can be considered extractive in the Marxist sense, meaning that a small group of individuals exploits the rest of the population.51 In European history, we have to go back to the Middle Ages to find land tax rates similar to those that prevailed under the EIC. For instance, Michael Postan estimates that the average manorial payments in thirteenth-century England frequently amounted to or even exceeded 50 percent of villein tenants’ gross output.52


According to one of them, John Capper, in the rural district of Cawnpore in the North-Western Provinces in the mid-nineteenth century a cultivator earned £5 a year and had to pay [End Page 166] a quarter of that for the land tax and another quarter on rent. This left him with only £2 10s for the costs of farming and supporting his family for a year. Capper claims that these were not extreme cases, but actually represented the conditions of a very large portion of the agricultural population of British India.56 In fact, my calculations suggest that agricultural laborers’ standard of living was very similar to that of the workers who were called “coolies” at the time, who performed unskilled manual labor and constituted the lowest paid category of labor. These unskilled workers lived below bare-bones subsistence levels in the first half of the nineteenth century, as they had to use nearly their entire wage to buy inferior food grains, leaving no margin for non-food expenditure.57

note the numbers above: 50% or more of all production in farmers' land. Standards of living literally at below subsistence levels.

Any given research is subject to bias and must be compared with actual history to see if it makes sense - but India's multi-generational backwardness is consistent with a 100 year+ exploitation as postulated in the above paper - exploitation which was quantitatively greater and thus qualitatively worse than the previous generation of external (Mughal) rulers.

So much for the "wonders" of feudalism (note the feudal extraction in the UK also referenced).

Posted by: c1ue | Mar 4 2021 17:39 utc | 238

@ juliania | Mar 4 2021 3:00 utc | 218.... the scotland independence movement is a big thing to understand given what is going on at present.... first you would have to know some of the characters and recent history.. i am not sure where one would start... here is an article i read this morning which might be as good a place as any to get going on it, if you are interested!

as for the banks being like people.... it is true the banks have people working for them, but the power they hold is not for the people, but for a select few as i see it... they are corrupt essentially, in particular the central banks which oversee them all... the central bank system of the world is not working for people, but for the 1%... again, it is a long story which requires some background to understand more fully..

@ 220 debs... thanks for the video... how do we know they are the same white helmet group? my bet is they are... that video was captured from radio free asia - headquartered in washington dc... i see when i go to open the link now, i get this - Private video Sign in if you've been granted access to this video... it appears the video is no longer up.. perhaps the folks are radio free asia or whatever realized they are going to run into problems with the myanmar authorities if they keep it up//
i agree with your comments @ 223.. @ 232... thanks.. that appears to be the case.. i should read posts backwards from now on, lol...

@ 237 karlof1... agreed...

Posted by: james | Mar 4 2021 17:40 utc | 239

Today's report on Two Sessions activity provides a wide variety of info and comparisons with Western democracy. Some see the era of competition with the West coming to an end:

"Though many have sought to use the US as a benchmark for China's long-term development, some analysts argue that China's future plans are so ambitious that a falling US can no longer serve as a standard.

"'We should not see the US as a benchmark. We should focus on the world as a whole and on the needs of the people… it may be a bit aggressive but when we talk about 2035, we are just competing with ourselves,' Shen Yi, a professor at Fudan University's School of International Relations and Public Affairs, told the Global Times on Thursday.

"Shen said that the real competition is not about the size of the economy or military or global influence, but about the ability to govern and help people to better lives, which the US has failed in recent crises.

"'The US still wields great global influence. But if it cannot govern effectively and help its people, so what? It can have 1.3 million aircraft carriers, but that would not help its domestic woes,' he said. 'This is a race about which development path is the best for mankind.'" [My Emphasis]

Those are very wise words and very keen observations. Earlier in the article there this other comparative:

"Zhang said that if you read the government work report delivered by Chinese premier at the NPC annual session every year, and compare it to the state of the union address delivered by US President at the US Congress every year, 'you will learn what is substantial democracy and what is democracy in name only.'" [My Emphasis]

China's consensual model of democracy cannot be fathomed by many in the West primarily because it lacks the egalitarian and meritocratic society AND culture of China. The West's ordering based on Class is undemocratic in its basis as most at MoA realize and wealth doesn't command any respect whereas in China wisdom trumps all. The West's democratic structures have barely advanced beyond the feudal structures they emerged from and that Neoliberals are trying hard to revert to, so there's no effort or desire to increase the performance of governance since what's now happening serves those in control just fine. And although China doesn't attempt to export its system, the West does and expects China to mimic its behavior, which is why it sees China as a political threat. Of course, other nations look at China's system and its performance and may attempt to emulate on their own initiative--and the West just can't allow the threat of that Good Example to exist. So, it's repeating its actions of 100+ years ago by trying to halt egalitarian human development. So, it's the Class-based system the West promotes and defends, which it tries to conceal behind a Potemkin Village festooned with democratic trappings.

Posted by: karlof1 | Mar 4 2021 18:18 utc | 240

Another Lavrov interview, this time with UK-based magazine Russkaya Mysl. Response to the state of UK-Russian relations:

"Over the past few years, the British government has pursued a harsh anti-Russia policy combined with a steady increase in sanctions pressure. In the year after Brexit, London adopted three packages of sanctions against Russian officials and organisations. The British authorities have been making absolutely unsubstantiated attacks on Russia and using harsh anti-Russia rhetoric in the public spotlight regardless of their EU membership. As the result, our bilateral cooperation has almost come to a standstill, mutual trust has been lost, and the temperature of our relations is hovering around zero."

On Russian relations with the Outlaw US Empire:

"We do not expect to see any serious changes in the entire complex of bilateral relations under the Biden administration. The future of our cooperation depends not only on us but also on the American side. We have always been ready for an open dialogue based on mutual respect, a balance of the sides’ interests and a resolve for making compromises. Regrettably, the United States has taken a different track in recent years, and it does not depend on the domestic political situation or who stands at the helm in the White House."

How Lavrov sees Turkey-NATO relations:

"At the same time, Turkish leaders seek to pursue an independent foreign policy favouring national interests. Turkey’s NATO allies criticise Ankara for its reluctance to blindly follow in the wake of Washington’s policy and for independently choosing methods of ensuring its own defence capability. They have even imposed certain anti-Turkey sanctions in some fields. The example of Turkey shows the real-life situation with intra-NATO democracy."

The last question was quite curious as was Lavrov's response. Of course, each response is more involved.

Posted by: karlof1 | Mar 4 2021 18:39 utc | 241

An insight into Russian civil society as Putin meets with members of the We Are Together campaign, which seems similar to the United Way within the Empire.


"I would like to congratulate you on a whole year of your joint work in this wonderful, noble and highly appreciated field of supporting those who badly need a helping hand. It is especially gratifying that someone has been doing this during the most difficult time in recent years, one of the most challenging periods of our time – during the pandemic. It has been almost a year since you teamed up and began working. It is especially pleasing that the unification was actually prompted by a call from the heart, as I understand it.

"When I watched what and how you were doing everything, who was joining you and in what formats, you know, it was impossible to look at it without strong emotions. It was a drive that united people with very different views – politics no longer matter here – different ages and professions....

"But all this together has helped to reach out to such a large group of people, 5 million people in need. That was a lot. There were many people who needed support, and they received it from you. Directly from your soul, I might say. As they say in such cases, it is worth its weight in gold. As many as 10,000 companies, and 5 million people. And the movement itself united 200,000 people – it was a huge army, an army of people who voluntarily, at the call of their hearts, joined in this work." [My Emphasis]

I share Putin's emotions. It's seldom we're provided with information about such organizations in other nations, particularly those deemed enemies. Such information makes it hard to see such people as enemies, which is why it's swept under the rug. Nor would our controllers want me or anyone else identifying with Putin's emotions.

Posted by: karlof1 | Mar 4 2021 19:02 utc | 242

Hello james,

I've set aside that video and will watch this weekend.

What you are saying above about "people" and "banks" reminded me of something else about the British dictatorship.

The key law is the Treason Felony Act of 1848.

Look closely at the wording:

3. Offences herein mentioned declared to be felonies If any person whatsoever shall, within the United Kingdom or without, compass, imagine, invent, devise, or intend to deprive or depose our Most Gracious Lady the Queen, from the style, honour, or royal name of the imperial crown of the United Kingdom, or of any other of her Majesty’s dominions and countries, or to levy war against her Majesty, within any part of the United Kingdom, in order by force or constraint to compel her to change her measures or counsels, or in order to put any force or constraint upon or in order to intimidate or overawe both Houses or either House of Parliament, or to move or stir any foreigner or stranger with force to invade the United Kingdom or any other of her Majesty's dominions or countries under the obeisance of her Majesty, and such compassings, imaginations, inventions, devices, or intentions, or any of them, shall express, utter, or declare, by publishing any printing or writing ... or by any overt act or deed, every person so offending shall be guilty of felony, and being convicted thereof shall be liable ... to be transported beyond the seas for the term of his or her natural life.

See that?

"Any person whatsoever" Without any question that includes natural persons, like you or me, and legal persons, like corporations. Including banks.

"within the United Kingdom or without" This law applies on a worldwide basis.

It is illegal to put any force or constraint upon the queen. Again, that word "any" force or constraint.

I don't know how old you are. If you are an old wrinkly like me you might just remember the scandals in Australia when first Bob Hawke, then Paul Keating, placed their hand upon her person.

It is ILLEGAL to do so, because of this act.

"any overt act or deed" includes placing your hand, gently, to assist an elderly lady.
It also includes a hell of a lot more. It is that deadly word "any" once more.

Imagine that word at the disposal of Donald Rumsfeld or Karl Rove. Do you see?

Furthermore, it is this act that is the reason for all of the trouble in Ireland, and now Scotland.

If the British had given up the whole of Ireland, it would have been the end of the United Kingdom and all of its laws.

Their solution was partition.

What had been The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland became the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. And that is why they will not give up the Six Counties.

If the British give up Scotland, same result. So they will not give up Scotland.

Posted by: John Cleary | Mar 4 2021 19:10 utc | 243

Clearly, not all of Putin's remarks were on the transcript provided by the Kremlin I linked @242, for as TASS reports Putin really went off--"Putin blasts ‘monsters’ who drive kids to commit suicide, goad teens into lawless rallies." More:

"The head of state was outraged by those who profit off of inciting young people to commit suicide or take part in unauthorized rallies. 'On the Internet, we are faced with the promotion of child pornography, child prostitution, the distribution of drugs, where the target audience is precisely kids and teenagers, goading them into the same street to hang out, fight with the police, and then hide behind [those] children,' Putin pointed out.

"He noted that these people 'manage to arrange their activities so as to profit off of it all, they post advertisements in addition to other things.' 'When police catch up with these monsters, you can imagine that they turn out to be completely different. It is one thing when someone pretends to be ever so cool, acting like Rambo, surfing the Internet and urging some boy or girl to jump off a roof - and build an entire theory to achieve their goal - but as soon as the police come, they literally crap their pants. They are bastards, mere pests no one would feel sorry for when crushing them,' Putin said. 'We must not allow anyone to do such things,' the Russian president emphasized, adding that he would like 'the overwhelming majority of citizens to grasp this danger to the country’s future.'"

I noted Putin discussed this subject in his recent meetings with SBU and Interior Ministry, and he's clearly very passionate on the subject. One can imagine how he feels towards nations that promote such activities as they're clearly worse than the "pests" that deserve "crushing." The White Helmet crimes promoted by the Outlaw Empire and its support for Chechen and other terrorists must be connected in his moral compass--I cannot see how they couldn't--and that spells trouble as IMO this outburst of truthful emotion is a sign that Putin has had his fill.

Posted by: karlof1 | Mar 4 2021 21:38 utc | 244

@ john cleary... thanks... essentially those in power write the laws... i imagine royalty has always had a dominant influence and it appears that this hasn't changed... i didn't realize how draconian and in some ways dictatorial it is! i live in canada, but i think the issue you mention on australia back in the day when the queen directly subverted aussie parliament - yes, i am familiar with this... so to your last sentence - indeed, which is why it is so interesting to watch scotland do what it is doing here, while being usurped by the very politicians they believe are offering them scottish independence.. it is a fascinating ongoing show on display at the moment.. none of them want to get caught in any of the act of representing the city of london more then the interests of an independent scotland!

regarding the video on the city of london i shared, there is another interesting connection to it from the uk historian peter cain.. i have only watched 10 minutes so far, but it is quite informative... cheers james

Posted by: james | Mar 4 2021 21:51 utc | 245

There is another link to the white helmets 're education'in Myanmar now. Some may find it tough but most of the energy is getting delivered to their helmets & I dunno what else Myanmar can do to protect itself from this type of foreign orchestrated subversion.

Posted by: Debsisdead | Mar 4 2021 22:32 utc | 246

Wow! Russia Plans Venus Lander:

"The Venus program aims to deliver the planet’s soil to Earth. It will take place after landing, exploration of the landing area and examination of soil specimen."

The surface temp on Venus has long been deemed to hot for the survival of electronics and other crucial equipment. The first of three craft is to depart in 2029, so we have awhile to wait.

Posted by: karlof1 | Mar 4 2021 23:18 utc | 247

To my Scottish friends.

Please bear in mind how the British have always worked: problem - reaction - solution.

By the 1970's they had pushed trades union power to the extreme.
It all became a bit silly, and lost credibility.

When Thatcher came along she surfed the wave of reaction against a trades union movement weakened and discredited by infiltrators, agents provocateurs, and the mass media.*

By 1984 they were ready. The combined forces of popular revulsion and elite subversion** defeated the armed forces of the working class. The National Union of Mineworkers.

By 1986 everything was kicking off.

The "Big Bang" in The City, "English Jurisdiction" for dispute resolution at Lloyds of London. And Scotland.

Now it is time to take stock.

*In one famous confrontation, the police charged the strikers. The strikers counter-charged
On the BBC news it played that the strikers charged first, and only afterwards did the police become aggressive.

** "Silver Birch"

Posted by: John Cleary | Mar 4 2021 23:25 utc | 248

Money is never an object, nor is anything else it seems.

Panama Warns of Disguised US Attempts to Install Military Bases

Posted by: arby | Mar 5 2021 0:31 utc | 249

@246 debs.... the comments on that youtube link are most informative... propaganda works.. is that the guardian on the take from the intel agencies or not??

Posted by: james | Mar 5 2021 0:45 utc | 250

re James@ #250

The guardian has been run in conjunction with MI6 since the night of the hard
drive hammering at least. Immediately after that the comments which used to
appear under nearly every article began to disappear and oppressive &
relentless moderation became the norm, one justifying the other, IE the claimed
need for more moderation was the excuse used to slash the number of comments
threads & the increasing devotion to toeing the neolib line increased the % of
angry & oppositional comments.
I hardly bother any more as very few controversial articles permit comments and
those that do are usually only open for a few minutes, those few minutes being
intensively moderated, any post which argues an alternative point of view is torn
down within a coupla minutes. If like me you are known for calling out the tosh
it is quite normal to be told that comments have suddenly closed just as you try
to post something.

Luke Harding ('intelligence') and Dan Sabbagh (defence) spend most of their
energy advancing 'deep state' or whatever you want to term it, interests plus
their sources are so accurate concerning possible deployments, armaments
purchases sales & the like it is impossible to believe they are not willing
spruikers being fed that tosh the blob believes will best manufacture consent
among grauniad readers.
I still read it regularly because if we don't peruse at least one organ of the
neoliberal project regularly, it is much harder to understand the blob's next big
There are major difficulties with that, difficulties which are repeated in real
humanist publications who are equally wedded to only discussing those topics
which appear in the corporate media.
Although I recently pointed out issues in the Pacific & Guyana which rarely cop
a mention, Africa is the regiion which no one talks about unless it cannot be avoided but can be cast in a negative light.

Yet Africa is the site of the worst killings and population displacement of anywhere in the world currently.
Too many have bought into the propaganda that in sub Saharan Africa
resistance = Boko Haram = terrorists killing whitefellas, when none of the statements in that equation are correct.

The Tuareg were once highly honoured, revered in fact in France for their 'proud independence'
now are being subjected to an awful genocide by the French military under instructions to secure those areas rich in minerals,
especially uranium ‘for France’.

Viewed in the light of what has happened to those sub Saharan nations Niger,
Burkina Faso, Benin & Chad which were left so vulnerable after the demise of Colonel
Gadaffi one has to wonder if that was not the primary amerikan goal. Italy &
France were all about Libya's oil initially but once Libya fell France altered their course
and began collaborating with amerika to steal everything they could.
Col Gaddaffi amongst many other great acts of humanism, had always supported the
nations south of them through various financial struggles. That had made those countries far less
vulnerable to whitefella greed.

Thanks to MI6 penetration of englander news vectors and homeland security control
of amerika's vectors, humanity is continually being distracted with silly but
divisive domestic soap operas, along with a side salad of evil Russia & China.
No one seems in the least aware of the real cruelties occurring right now in Africa.

The bulk of Africa's population has always been rural & agrarian, but now those
populations are being forced into slums on the fringes of already mega-cities.
Apart from the obvious that there are no jobs and insufficient resources (water,
electricity, accommodation & roads) to cater for this massive shift, WTF do people

The land is being handed over to vast corporations who mostly have no
interest in agriculture. Those who do bring in Agribusinesses, consider the
'west' their primary market. We all remember how some African famines in the
past were down to Agribusiness deciding there was a better economic return growing nuts
for Planters to sell in amerika than could be got from feeding the local
population, this will occur again for sure.
When it does, we will be told how the problem was 'giving fish instead of a
fishing pole' or equivalent absolute & untrue nonsense when the real problem is IMF
insistence on catering to rich fellas.

If you have watched "The Spider's Web" you will know that every year Africa
injects far more money directly into western economies than the sum total of what it
'owes' which - despite wall to wall lies to the contrary - isn't that much
anyhow. The 'loans' are in effect chains to keep Africa's people enslaved.

Media control exists to ensure the 99% never get a realistic look at what is
happening in the world & the Guardian is a brick in that wall, a brick aimed at bourgeois

Posted by: Debsisdead | Mar 5 2021 2:43 utc | 251

Thanks for the link, James @ 239. I will go read that. I didn't say banks are 'like people' -- I don't believe that! I said, or meant to say, that it is people who run the banks, even who work within. Not an amorphous entity, people doing wrong! And of course, if it is your livelihood in question, that makes it difficult to take a stand against what is going on. But if you are in a leadership position, that would be a significant moral stand to take -- or on the other hand that would be a prosecutorial issue that ought to be taken against you, as a person doing something illegal. And that did happen during the Savings and Loan crisis. It happened! The little people who had money invested were not harmed, as the banks were simply closed while they were put to rights. But big people were indeed punished and it was a significant period of adjustment.

That's how it should work. Of course, it doesn't, and many are culpable, beginning with the lawmakers and judges. But once that honest politician we are all looking for takes a stand, those dominoes will fall.

Posted by: juliania | Mar 5 2021 4:02 utc | 252

Further thanks, james - I just read the piece, noted a very large number of comments, then went to rt and enjoyed a George Galloway opinion piece, though I must say I was distracted by this:

"... A surprisingly large number claimed to have known her since she was 16, not least because she’s over 50 and many of those posting could only have known her then when they were still eating rusks..."

Ah, eating rusks! Fond memory!

I'm not sure what the Queen has to do with all this - a Governor General type power play such as happened in Australia?

Posted by: juliania | Mar 5 2021 4:50 utc | 253

I am reading a ZH posting about recent machinations with 10 year Treasuries and it reads like the financial collapse could be close.

Many of us here have written about how empire will destroy itself from within and that may now be happening with the US Treasuries market. There are MoA barflies that wrote that shorting was done for now because the GameStop debacle but that is just the equities market. Think about what shorting the Reserve Currency market can do for precipitating a global market crash.

The financial sharks are circling faster and faster not realizing that they are eating themselves in the process of all this trashing about....whomever are the last standing when that music stops will hold dead Reserve Currency money that has no intrinsic value and derivative positions that net to them owning everything in the Western world, if they can defend those holdings.

A continuation of barbarism or we all try and get along under some form of socialism....will that discussion ever take place and do us 99% even get to vote on it?

Posted by: psychohistorian | Mar 5 2021 5:28 utc | 254

James I read the Hugh Kerr article in 'Wings Over Scotland" somewhat reluctantly because as Scots are some of my primary antecedents and I'm a fervent supporter of Scots' independence, I don't want involvement in the SNP's internecine struggles because they will be the main weapon england will use to stymy independence. The old divide & rule.

After having read the article, I have to say that there is nothing surprising nor particularly disturbing in it.

What I read was a description of every political movement which chooses to go down the road of electoral politics as a route to political power.

A 'democratic' structure is initiated and staffed by a bunch of committed, take no prisoners believers in the cause the party advocates, their guts and determinations wins sufficient support to give the party electoral success - end of Act 1.

Act 2 commences with an inrush of highly articulate smart politicians who are welcomed for their ability to convince voters until the penny drops and the old hands in the party realise too late that their vehicle for change is now under the control of a bunch of careerists who believe winning power for themselves is a higher priority than achieving the primary aim of their political movement.

look at UK Labour originally formed as the political arm of the trade union movement - Keir Fuckwit and his merry racketeers wouldn't acknowledge a trade union member if they fell over him/her. They support policies which make it nearly impossible for workers in a new sector of the economy to organise. The few unions which support them are either public sector employees caught up in 'woke' tosh or extremely conservative bourgeoisie who lick the bosses arsehole on a daily basis. Their notion of 'democratic socialism' is a joke since there is nothing democratic nor socialist about them.

Green parties have gone the same way by compromising with politicians and business over energy policy, continued pollution of undeveloped economies by developed economies and worst of all handing control of environmental policies to corporatists and neolib politicians. But that isn't as important in the eyes of Green pols as 'winning' (ie increasing their number of Green seats) is.
Few ask the question "what is the point of more seats if we don't change anything?

The rightist populists in Europe have also fallen under control of careerist compromises, which some may see as a good thing in that it lessens the odds of gas chambers, trouble is it increases the instances or petty racism, divides the hoi polloi who play against each other leaving the same old shits in power.
If Act 3 commences the outcome is inevitable. The by now old new movement wins power and little if anything changes, the movements chief actors are all puppets of the already powerful whose dislike of substantive change is a given, so there a few cosmetic differences (apologies for past wrongs are always popular) but the party has moved from firebrand to farcical.

Even is places such as Aotearoa where setting up a political movement is much easier than say amerika, plus proportional representation ensures early recognition, it still takes far too long to become influential by which time careerists have corrupted the movement's purpose.

We have to find another way of ensuring people's wants are met because electoral machinery is now too cumbersome to create change at the pace people need it to.

Posted by: Debsisdead | Mar 5 2021 5:50 utc | 255

@Grieved | Mar 3 2021 1:58 utc | 191

"after a year of intense study and still knowing nothing"
Strongly disagree. Yes if you go in circles "was Trump right or Fauci (Cuomo's star has dimmed of late), or should we look at Germany, or was the Swedish model best of all" then you're basically picking your flavor of failure. (It's like a US president asking what he should do about Afghanistan, and being offered varying degrees of escalation.) However, civilized countries like China, Vietnam, Taiwan, New Zealand, and Mongolia have stopped the epidemic and moved on; and this has been so for many months already--we do know what works. You notice from this list (or make another one of your own) that there's a wide variety of political colors in it, so that doesn't seem to be the issue.

But the West is now in its post-modern phase, where an objective reality is denied to exist--there's only the narrative. The entire generation currently at the wheel has been brought up on this stuff. I reluctantly agree that this is the way things work now, and it makes for potent political provocations and advertising more generally. But when, you know, real reality intervenes, our world leaders are utterly lost, for they thought they'd banished it. They wonder whom to blame, devise a communication strategy, and are bewildered that what has always worked for them on their way to the top don't cut it now.

Or you may take a shortcut around this slippery humanities stuff, and say that all the West's vital systems have been consumed by corruption. Nobody can rise to Fauci's level in Washington without some corporate interest backing them. You're welcome to your sexual deviancy, the more colorful the better in fact, but if you're not bought then you're not "one of us", hence not trusted as a team player. And again, this was supposed not to matter: when you control the "corruption watchdogs" compiling ranking lists, and indeed the definition of the word to exclude "the way Washington works", then you were sure the accusing fingers would safely point elsewhere--narrative is reality, until SHTF.

Posted by: Ma Laoshi | Mar 5 2021 6:04 utc | 256

Posted by: Ma Laoshi | Mar 5 2021 6:04 utc | 256

Well said. Indeed. I remember when the bullshit went into hyperdrive on the TV here and I knew then there was going to be hell to pay for it. And so it has been. There are quite a few places on the planet now with that sort of problem. Hopefully we will be a warning for the future if there is one. Actually I am amazed we made it this far, but I have since learned that is not so unusual either. Old empires can grind along for a long time before something come along to deliver the final blow.

The Yurpeans have all been trying to do Rome again for the last couple thousnd years. I think the Romans were the worst sort of assholes, but our Foundars wanted to emulate Rome here, that was the ideal. Take a look at the architecture in Washington DC sometime.

And of course war is not fesible as a way to get ahead in a world with modern tech, just too destructive, and it is no longer the case that the destrctiveness belongs to some elite few.

Posted by: Bemildred | Mar 5 2021 10:02 utc | 257

#Fraudsquad betrays the $15 minimum wage and tries to gaslight their supporters. Again they could #Force the vote but no, not now. Wait till the mid term elections etc, etc, etc.

This is Dimratsss Fraud Squad treachery of the highest order and Jimmy Dore is calling it out.

The Squad is a duplicitous, spineless blob of mucus. It makes Bernie Sanders betrayal of the working class look like a valiant act of misguided solidarity.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Mar 5 2021 10:36 utc | 258

The Aussies are ready to defend themselves from all those Chinese junks that they fear will invade.

What a f'ing joke. I have never met a paranoid bunya nut but they have all gathered down under.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Mar 5 2021 10:58 utc | 259

Scottish independence: a fantasy. Scotland has 5M people vs. 50+M in the rest of the UK. Recognition of the rights of a small majority only counts when it is foreign enemies with restive minorities. Catalonia should be an object lesson.

Shorting the US dollar: another fantasy - especially if you live in the US. Legal tender means everything: not just repayment of all debts public and private but the laws to enforce it. Yes, convenience etc but ultimately those are all window dressing on the iron fist of the law. Look at countries like China that had 2 tiered systems of national currency to understand just how much convenience ultimately matters (i.e. not at all).

Posted by: c1ue | Mar 5 2021 13:57 utc | 260

@Ma Laoshi #256
It is a fantasy to think that it is policies alone which matter.
I've noted before that *no* country in Asia has suffered mightily from COVID - compared to the Western democracies.
While this fact spurs all manner of conspiracy crap - a much simpler explanation is obvious: there have been other, somewhat closely related coronaviruses circulating in Asia such that the population is much less susceptible.
Another possible reason is age: Asia in general - with the notable exception of Japan - is visibly younger demographically than the West.
It wouldn't shock me if it were both of the above along with some other secondard factors.
Yet this is irrelevant: COVID is going to be around forever. Whether it is Africa, India, deplorable-land in the US, immigrant pockets in Europe, latencies in the general population, general circulation due to anti-vax sentiments in the educated, whatever - COVID is going to continue to circulate and have the opportunity to mutate into something new.
Barring forced vaccinations for 80%+ of any given population - it is simply not conceivable that a return to normalcy is possible.
And even in that situation - the world economy is still going to be massively impacted by income generation and consumption changes. The economies of Asia are uniformly dependent on exports to the West - and the West losing millions to tens of millions of its wealthiest members of the population (the elderly) means a long term significant reduction in consumption capability.
The political effects will also start to be felt: the disproportionate deaths in the elderly will likely also skew politics since age is directly correlated with conservatism.
Cheap imported products and immigrants compete directly with Western younger demographics' jobs and opportunities.

Posted by: c1ue | Mar 5 2021 14:08 utc | 261

@Debsisdead #255
At least you recognize reality, but clearly still don't understand how politics works.
As much as you hate the wishy-washiness of politicians - that is what politics is.
Policies which are good in any one person's eyes are often the polar opposite in another's - and this is because of competing interests.
It isn't reason which drives people to act - it is emotion. A true politician's job is finding the "angriest and the mostest", to paraphrase. In the absence of that, the most money works too.
So either you build a movement which is unitary enough to achieve its goals by power or vote, or you might as well just sit back and watch because nothing else matters.
Even in the Western democracies where apathy is the biggest feature - this generalized apathy is what enables specific groups to stand out in the politicians' calculus.
I watch with great interest to see how the angry deplorables of 2020 will make their desires felt (or not) moving forward even as the Democrat 2020 election victors desperately try to groupthink their constituents in line.

Posted by: c1ue | Mar 5 2021 14:16 utc | 262

253I'm not sure what the Queen has to do with all this - a Governor General type power play such as happened in Australia?

Posted by: juliania | Mar 5 2021 4:50 utc |

My apologies if I come across as a monomaniac, Juliana.

It's the law that has something to do with it, as Queen Elizabeth claims jurisdiction over persons worldwide, and that includes banks.

What you are thinking about was when Gough Whitlam was sacked by Sir John Kerr in 1976.

What I'm referring to is this:

I'd have thought psychohistorian would have been all over this, the beating heart of the private finance system.

Posted by: John Cleary | Mar 5 2021 14:20 utc | 263

@ John Cleary | Mar 5 2021 14:20 utc | 263 who wrote about someone touching the queen
I'd have thought psychohistorian would have been all over this, the beating heart of the private finance system.

The queen is not the beating heart but the ugly face of the private finance system. The queen is the one that has to go ask for permission to enter the City of London annually, correct?

Posted by: psychohistorian | Mar 5 2021 14:50 utc | 264

@ 251 debs.... it is always interesting and educational what you have to say... thanks for commenting at length... i watched that peter cain video i had linked to @ 245 to the end... africa does get discussed and peter cain - uk historian's viewpoint is quite insightful, although i don't remember the specific time spots where he included it in his talk... it gives a broad overview on the financial system in place in the city of london and how it evolved the way it did... anyone interested in this topic will find it fascinating... he kind of skirts leaving blame with anyone though... as he describes it, it is just the way things evolved... consequently many places that were a part of the british empire were taken advantage of... basically anywhere where money could be made, would be taken advantage of... his commentary is quite fascinating and what he says about the citys relationship to africa is worth a visit on your part...

as to your comments on the link from wings over scotland that i shared - you may be right.. it is also a cynical viewpoint, but one that is easy for me to share in... i would prefer not to, but i am a realist too! so much of the decision making, and decisions that come about come straight out of our relationship to those in power, where power is held being often ambiguous, but still calling so many of the shots in our present day world... accidents happen, but generally the choices given or not given people are coming out of this place... so maybe it is an accident some in scotland are pushing for independence... perhaps the city of london with all its financial clout will never let it happen and ensure those in the movement are usurped accordingly... perhaps... we all keep waiting for change to happen in whatever sphere that interests us, and typically keep on being let down... change seems to take place more slowly then many of us would like... thanks for your comments!

@ 252 juliania... well, i apologize if i misread your comments on the banks are like people... it is entirely possible i got that wrong! chalk that up to another case of befuddled thinking on my part, lol! either way - it isn't so much the people who work at these banks, but the inherently corrupt nature of the institutions themselves... of course we can blame human nature for this too... how many people have gone to war in the past over the apparent good intentions of their superiors? historically this has been going on a very long time... at what point do people realize they are essentially selling their soul to the devil?? people need to work.. i don't blame them directly, although short of living in a cave in some wilderness area, it is hard to buck the system... so people fit in as best they can and make decisions that are compromised at best and immoral and completely unethical at worst... the fact remains that our present financial system and those lording over the planet with financial clout, are all indeed quite corrupt, but think nothing of it as far as i can tell... it is business as usual for them! having watched that video the spiders web that debs left the past week, this is all but too obvious.. corruption and deceit are so baked into our present financial system, that anyone involved in any of it essentially signs a contract to work with the devil.. it really is that simple... and surprisingly, many people are quite happy to sign on!!! for all i know they also go to church on sundays too! and it could even be an orthodox christian religion that is their choosing!!!

after reading the news, or the comments on moa, it is easy to slip into a state of deep depression! i am amazed it never happens with me! it must be due the fact that i keep all of these mental chatter at an arms length from my emotional being!!! it helps that i play the piano and drums over the course of the day too!! short of that, i would have been addicted to hard drugs a long time ago!!! thanks for your comments and everyone else's too... i learn so much from reading here, and i have to say it doesn't get me any closer to god or in greater touch with myself, but i am learning a lot about the world and how it works!! is this cynicism or realism??

Posted by: james | Mar 5 2021 17:59 utc | 265

The queen is not the beating heart but the ugly face of the private finance system. The queen is the one that has to go ask for permission to enter the City of London annually, correct?

Posted by: psychohistorian | Mar 5 2021 14:50 utc | 264

Hello psycho.

Correct. She pays her respects for the City's proclamation in 1952.

But it's her protection racket, her control of the legal system, her de facto ability to convert that which is unlawful into something neutral at worst. That's why I call her the beating heart. Why do you call her the ugly face? Is it the banknotes?

Posted by: John Cleary | Mar 5 2021 18:21 utc | 266

@ John Cleary | Mar 5 2021 18:21 utc | 266 with the disagreement with me about who runs the world

I see the queen as a figurehead with no real power The monarchy is a front for the global private finance folk so that the public have the myth of feudal antiquity instead of the reality of financial jackboot.

Do you really think that the City of London folk come to the queen for approval and direction? I don't.

Posted by: psychohistorian | Mar 5 2021 20:41 utc | 267

Posted by: psychohistorian | Mar 5 2021 20:41 utc | 267


Posted by: John Cleary | Mar 5 2021 20:58 utc | 268

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