Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
March 14, 2021

The MoA Week In Review - OT 2021-021

Last week's posts at Moon of Alabama:

> Although the administration has vowed to consult closely with allies that have troops in Afghanistan, officials from several European nations said they were not informed in advance about the details of the U.S. proposals outlined by Blinken.

“I wouldn’t call it consultation; it’s selective informing,” said one senior European official, speaking on the condition of anonymity about sensitive diplomacy. An official from another coalition government said they first became aware of Blinken’s letter only after reading about it in the media. <

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Other issues:

Biden:

Iran:

Internet:

Use as open thread ...

Posted by b on March 14, 2021 at 13:03 UTC | Permalink

Comments
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One unsolved need is a simple but precise narrative, that can be translated into as many languages as possible, capable to can expose the political system in each of the 128 to 256 different nation state to be nothing but a decoy.. The decoy (political system) camouflages the activities in the name of the political system of the nation state. Private actors use the nation state to exploit those who are the governed both within the nation state and between nation states.

8 billion people are each divided into one of the 256 different nation states. The Oligarch and their corporations design the political system, and then appoint or filter the appointment of politicians to man the jobs in the structure and then they evolve massively powerful political institutions to write laws that govern (the rule of law) the behaviors of the nation state entrapped deplorable. Like rats in a cage the governed deplorable remain passified by a few bits of cheese, made of un-kept or corrupted political promises.

I think private use of the nation state system is universal. The public political system is the jailer. The political system, in each nation state, seems to be tailored to the culture of those governed deplorable contained within. In all cases the political system seems to serve the Oligarch in that the political system because it is the default decoy (when things go wrong blame the politicians). The privately owned MSM seems to be the major means used by the Oligarch have kept their private mostly corrupt activities so-well camouflaged.

The political system responds to complaint with promise to fix the problem and the news media and cinema always blame or explain that it is the political system, or one of more of the actors in the political system. That the political system is promising to fix the exploitation or to prosecute the corruption; but nothing ever happens. The truth is, the political system and all of its actors are in place to take the brunt of the hate generated by private use of the nation state system. Always the politicians must do only that which the private oligarch and their privately owned corporations desire.

No system exist for the deplorable governed to obtain redress. All means of obtaining a hearing or convicting and punishing those responsible are in the camp of the Oligarch owned political systems (government).

Posted by: snake | Mar 14 2021 14:23 utc | 3

Two Decades After the ‘End of Welfare,’ Democrats Are Changing Direction

Here are the top comment and the first reply to it in the article's page:

Taz
NYC11h ago
Times Pick

Aiding families with children is the way to go; but so is raising the minimum wage to $15 so that many of these families can relax just a bit and think about moving up in the world.

Don't worry, conservatives. These people don't have tax shelters in the Caymens. The money will go back into the American economy and be taxed as income.

--

IPI
SLC10h ago

@Taz
"Don't worry, conservatives. These people don't have tax shelters in the Caymens. The money will go back into the American economy and be taxed as income."

The money spent by poorer Americans goes mostly to China. Expect record trade deficit with China (and Asia in general) this year. Have you ever shopped in Walmart?

Even not considering the degree of economic illiteracy on both parts, I wonder which must be the level of hatred and intellectual and moral degeneracy one has to lower itself to get to the point to preach publicly against any kind of material help to the poor on the grounds "it will help China". Fascinating.

--//--

Elon Musk’s plans for life on Mars a ‘dangerous delusion’, British chief astronomer says

Elon Musk is the perfect reflection of the state of Western elite nowadays: delusional and fraudulent.

--//--

‘Mistakes’ were made during EU’s Covid-19 vaccination program, Commission VP admits

It is true that mistakes were made when ordering vaccines, both by Brussels and by the member states.

Mr. Timmermans should stop treating his citizens as children and tell them the real thing: the EU should have opened up to the Russian and Chinese vaccines instead of putting its fate in the hands of the UK and the American Empire. This "high school principal separating a fight between two students" talk won't cut it.

Related:

US losing moral high ground over vaccine hoarding: Global Times editorial

Biden will absolutely not give up vaccine nationalism. Not only he won't do that, but he can't do that: the centrists' entire plan rests on the hypothesis Biden will be able to vaccinate the entire American population in 2021. The plan here is that the euphoria from the end of the pandemic alone will be enough for them to kill any further progressive policy for the next three years. In other words, they are really being literal when they state "America is back" (i.e. back to when Obama was POTUS).

Also: related?

Ireland suspends AstraZeneca Covid vaccine over blood clot concerns

Is the EU starting a commercial warfare with AstraZeneca, like the USA?

--//--

The death of the UK Left:

Boris Johnson is voters' clear choice for PM in new poll

There are two elements the British people firmly associate with their national identity/ideology, maybe even more so than the Monarchy itself: capitalism and the Union. You try to change one of that and you're bound to lose.

I will repeat what I told the British when Labour sabotaged Corbyn to put Starmer in power: you could have an Aurelian, but instead chose a Priscus Attalus.

Posted by: vk | Mar 14 2021 15:03 utc | 4

@ vk 4: "I wonder which must be the level of hatred and intellectual and moral degeneracy one has to lower itself to get to the point to preach publicly against any kind of material help to the poor on the grounds "it will help China". Fascinating."

The point is not that "it will help China". The point is that this sort of stimulus is not likely to benefit the US economy, exactly for the reason stated by the commenter IPI.

Unlike, for example, tariffs on imports practiced by the Trump administration.

Reshoring (via tariffs) of manufacturing jobs would likely raise wages, in a natural, organic way. Voluntaristic 'minimum wage', on the other hand, is likely to produce more offshoring, deepen the crisis. Imo.

Posted by: Mao Cheng Ji | Mar 14 2021 15:25 utc | 5

@ Posted by: Mao Cheng Ji | Mar 14 2021 15:25 utc | 5

Reshoring (via tariffs) of manufacturing jobs would likely raise wages, in a natural, organic way. Voluntaristic 'minimum wage', on the other hand, is likely to produce more offshoring, deepen the crisis. Imo.

It's exactly the opposite.

Wages are determined by three factors: 1) the cost of subsistence of the working class (the "floor"), 2) the profit rate (the "ceiling") and 3) class struggle (the exact value, somewhere in the middle). In fiat currency systems, there's a pseudo fourth factor which is money printing/inflation, but that's not a true wage settler because, in the long term, it also affects the prices of all commodities in existence.

It is a myth manufacturing jobs are "organically" better paid. Otherwise, sweatshops wouldn't exist. The reason manufacturing jobs are seen as naturally more highly paid in the post-war era is because the manufacturing workers were in the vanguard of class struggle during the 19th-20th Centuries, therefore they fought more - and got more - rights, wages and benefits. The postmodern services sector jobs ("gig economy") are worst paid because they're historically docile and accept whatever conditions their capitalists impose them.

The benefits a nation-state get from being industrial are two-fold: 1) it will get a better trade balance against the agricultural-mineral exporter nations because manufacturing goods have more aggregate value and are elastic in demand and 2) it will give their citizens a higher purchase power, because they will be able to get more use values with less money. But they do not rise wages per se.

Posted by: vk | Mar 14 2021 15:51 utc | 6

Tried to read the Matt Taibbi link, but couldn't. Taibbi whining about the Sovietization of the mainstream media depends entirely on the half-witted notion that Fox (and wide swathes of talk radio too,) are not, magically, somehow part of mainstream media. They are, have been for decades. Rich people have invested in building up that kind of audience for decades. There's nothing more mainstream in American than rich. Taibbi may be an ideologically deformed nitwit with stupid pseudo ideas like the Deep State, but he's no more a serious analyst than Glenn Greenwald. And no more of a leftist either.

Tried to read the Bacevich. As a military man, he is of course thoroughly indoctrinated. So it is not surprising this fool blatantly lies about Trump being some sort of dissident from the military program. He does this by bare assertion, as nobody, not even a trained footnote wrangler can make a convincing case for that. But then he promptly condemns Biden two months (versus Trump's four years) for...continuing Trump's policy. I tired of such blatant self-contradiction and quit.

Mao Cheng Ji@5 may have given up on even pretending to be a leftist, given the eighteenth century economics openly avowed. More correct views are that the stimulus program is misnamed, that it's a disaster relief program. Also, that the stimulus program is not so very large compared to the trillions shoveled out to banks and corporations on a monthly basis by the Federal Reserve. Therefore the Biden "stimulus" program cannot reasonably be expected to make so much difference, except to the lives of ordinary people, someone Mao Cheng Ji has not great interest in I think. Certainly it will not fail because the rabble buy China, which is stupid. Re-shoring won't be accomplished by any other method than even more extensive automation, extension of computers into more areas of work, etc. Therefore there will *not* be a natural increase in employment (especially not EPOP,) and wages. The faint efforts towards unionization are in the right direction but it's almost certain this is largely for show. It may be intended to serve as a threat but the threat is only as credible as the determination to exercise it if necessary. The Democratic Party is largely conservative. This may be bitterly opposed to the cryptofascism of the Republicans/Trumpers but it's not the same thing as being even a New Dealer. Minimum wages are largely about service industries and those are not offshoring jobs, so the supposed increase in off-shoring imagined is largely fictional scare scenarios pushed by company stooges like Mao Cheng Ji.

Posted by: steven t johnson | Mar 14 2021 15:56 utc | 7

@vk
I didn't mean that "manufacturing jobs are "organically" better paid".

What I meant is that 'reshoring' would lead to lower unemployment, increased bargaining power of labor, and thus higher wages. That's what I called 'organic'. Which is exactly what happened during the Trump administration: the lowest unemployment and highest wages in 50 years.

And of course limiting inflow of desperate undocumented foreigners, suppressing wages by playing (roughly speaking) the role of scabs, cheap replacement workers - that's another factor.

Posted by: Mao Cheng Ji | Mar 14 2021 16:07 utc | 8

Posted by: killwallstreet | Mar 14 2021 13:32 utc | 1

I recall Correa during the 08/09 crisis saying that trying to deal with the crisis with their currency pegged to the US dollar was like being hand cuffed.

Posted by: arby | Mar 14 2021 16:08 utc | 9

snake @ 3; Nice rant, but did ya' need all that space to say; The mega-rich own the systems most exist in, and only a true democracy can solve most of humanities problems?

Would be nice if some nation actually had a true democracy. Sure as hell isn't where I live..(U$A)

Posted by: vetinLA | Mar 14 2021 16:47 utc | 10

@ Posted by: Mao Cheng Ji | Mar 14 2021 16:07 utc | 8

The problem with your rationale is that:

1) reshoring could theoretically lower unemployment if we exclude the factor of automation. However, even if that happened, it would lower the profit rates even more, thus lowering the ceiling of the wages; and

2) it would happen at the cost of the deindustrialization of the rest of the world - specially China. It would be simply transferring the problem from the USA to the rest of the world. It's a "zero-sum game" rationalization.

Posted by: vk | Mar 14 2021 17:07 utc | 11

"It's not the first time that Americans do not want to talk about being defeated by the Vietnamese ... "

Why America Can't Handle Crises
Brilliant short video by Second Thought
A Millennial's Guide to Capitalism One Disaster at a Time, From Haiti to Covid.

The Virus and The Parasite

Posted by: Hemiola | Mar 14 2021 17:08 utc | 12

Situation in Myanmar is growing uglier days by days, and there's really no quick way to solve it.

Posted by: Smith | Mar 14 2021 17:11 utc | 13

Amos Milburn - One Scotch, One Bourbon, One Beer
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=RZrP18m0lFo

Math is not Racist
The Critical Race Theorist Who Support Lowering Academic Standards for Black Kids Are the Racist
https://torrancestephensphd.substack.com/p/math-is-not-racist

Kids detained at US-Mexico border haven't been able to shower for days or call their parents, lawyers say
https://www.news.meredithlmg.com/general/kids-detained-at-us-mexico-border-havent-been-able-to-shower-for-days-or-call/article_61f97a30-4864-52cb-87e1-cf5ec0264bfa.html

Posted by: Dogon Priest | Mar 14 2021 17:13 utc | 14

I disagree with the concluding paragraphs in the Bacevich piece, which up till then had sounded well placed. He ends talking about the concept of the 'History of the Present' stating:

...Someday, when a successor to Buzzfeed posts an official ranking of twenty-first century crimes, the vicious murder and dismemberment of Jamal Khashoggi in the Saudi consulate in Istanbul won’t even make it anywhere near the first tier. His assassination will, for instance, certainly trail well behind the George W. Bush administration’s disastrous 2003 invasion of Iraq, not to speak of various other U.S. military actions from Afghanistan to Somalia undertaken as part of the so-called Global War on Terror...

That is a very bleak assessment. As jaded as his question of who "has your ear, Nancy Pelosi or Oprah Winfrey?" (In quotes the latter from Professor Martin Conway's article 'Making Trump History', which Bacevich discusses. ) I'll give Prof. Conway the benefit of the doubt as he's viewing fro afar, but I don't think that is accurate as an assessment of what important facts history will take account of. I think that Kashoggi's assassination will be right up there along with Soleiman's as defining moments of corrupt practises and no, sirs, Oprah doesn't have my ear any more than does Pelosi!

Posted by: juliania | Mar 14 2021 17:30 utc | 16

@vk,
the 'automation' thing I don't understand at all. The steam engine was automation, the conveyor belt was automation. The computer is automation. One way or another, automation adds jobs, not reduces them. There are no millions of unemployed bank tellers because of the ATM, those people just do something else.

I don't see how lower unemployment would lower profits. It seems to me it's the opposite: more people working, getting higher wages, consuming. More demand, economic boom, good times. Of course it's not forever, but we haven't seen any of it for what, 20 years? It would be nice to have it, for a change.

"it would happen at the cost of the deindustrialization of the rest of the world - specially China"?

But why? If the US was to produce (roughly) what it consumes, and China was to consume (roughly) what it produces, I don't see any deindustrialization coming out of it. Just a perfectly normal balanced economy.

The sector that would suffer (or hopefully disappear) because of it would be global finance, hedge funds and such. Produce a pair of sneakers in China for $5/pair and sell them in the US for $80/pair - this would not be happening anymore. And good riddance, if you ask me.

Posted by: Mao Cheng Ji | Mar 14 2021 17:33 utc | 17

MCJ @ 17; IMO, your reasoning is sound, and basic economics. But, problem is, big organized $ buys people by the bushel to convince everyone to the contrary.

Until that scenario changes, through true democracy, and "we the people" power actually gaining ascendancy, expect no changes.

Posted by: vetinLA | Mar 14 2021 17:44 utc | 18

@14 dogon

No, math is very racist.

We should only allow whites to engage in its applications. We should also defund all public funding for mathematic-based education.

We should then take that money and invest 100% of it into twirking and other booty-shaking courses, as well as African drumming. America will be the home of the greatest ass-gyrators the world has ever seen.

Posted by: NemesisCalling | Mar 14 2021 17:54 utc | 19

@ Posted by: Mao Cheng Ji | Mar 14 2021 17:33 utc | 17

The difference is that you're talking about reallocation of already existing resources, not the creation of new ones. The steam engine created more jobs in England during the Second Industrial Revolution because it was a brand new, revolutionary technology which created a brand new reality to the peoples of England and Scotland.

Reshoring is just the USA using its monopoly of violence to forcibly induce the rest of the world to give what it needs, when it needs it. It is global banditry by another name. And we know bandits and burglars don't create new wealth: they just take wealth from A to B.

If the USA was forced to produce everything it needed it would automatically mean it would not be the financial superpower anymore, which means the Dollar Standard wouldn't exist anymore, which means the American Empire would exist no more, which means it would not have any power to initiate any kind of process of "reshoring" to begin with. The world is a dialectic place: it jumps from disequilibrium to disequilibrium, not from equilibrium to equilibrium. If you take out finance, you give up the very factor that makes the USA being capable to force the rest of the world to obey it, which means all the talk about "reshoring" to be merely academic. Long story short, the American people cannot have the best of the two worlds: either it accepts a lower life standard while it accepts to not be the hegemon or it goes all-in with protecting its hegemon status and deepens its aggressiveness toward the rest of the world so as to maintain its exuberant life standard.

Posted by: vk | Mar 14 2021 18:02 utc | 20

snake @ 3; Nice rant, but did ya' need all that space to say; The mega-rich own the systems most exist in, and only a true democracy can solve most of humanities problems?

Would be nice if some nation actually had a true democracy. Sure as hell isn't where I live..(U$A) <= my question is why is that so? How can the things that exist be analyzed to understand why no democracies exist.

by: vetinLA @ 10 thanks for the shortened statement I wish it could express that every thing the state does
is for the exclusive benefit of the private corporate and oligarch interest. I wish it could be kept short and still point out the oligarch are the one's hidden inside of the duck blind, while the political system decoys the ducks, to draw the ducks within range of hidden shooters who are unseen in the duck blinds waiting to destroy the ducks ASA they land.. the political system, inside of the nation waits for complaints, signs of unrest, and passes them to the Oligarch who cause the nation state to pass a new or add a new restriction or whatever.. or start a new war, or proclaim a pandemic and the MSM (also privately owned) encourage the ducks to blame the political system, instead of the hunters hidden in the duck blind. MSM news is great at helping the hunters hide in their duck blinds.

Posted by: snake | Mar 14 2021 18:09 utc | 21

@19 addendum

Oops, I used math.

100% The whole, shebang! Errr...the whole watermelon!

Posted by: NemesisCalling | Mar 14 2021 18:14 utc | 22

snake @ 21; Thanks for the reply and explanation. And, I wish I could write as well as you and others do here at MoA:)....

Posted by: vetinLA | Mar 14 2021 18:33 utc | 23

Donbass waiting and preparing to be attacked:

Expected Attack on The Donbass, Russia's Readiness, Bad Day for Empire

Keep informed on:

Russell 'Texas' Bentley - VK page

Posted by: ADKC | Mar 14 2021 18:34 utc | 24

For what it is worth, somewhere this morning (and I thought it was here) I saw news from a Syrian news agency of coordinated strikes by the Syrian army and Russian airforce on terrorist groups advancing north of Aleppo. At the time I read the article it was advising that these strikes were to reopen the highway, which Erdogan had agreed to do in Minsk but had instead moved more of his terrorist forces there. (I am just quoting from memory so apologies for vagueness). I took this to be upstaging the message of further attacks in Ukraine upon the Donbass area - that is, that distractions for the Russians would be perpetrated in other volatile areas. The article was dated March 13th and linked to a previous similar Syrian determination to clear out the northern enclaves.

I haven't been able to find that link again in any search, apologies. I don't think I dreamed it, but you never know. It's been very windy here and my computer has been doing strange things.

Posted by: juliania | Mar 14 2021 18:34 utc | 25

They’re so smart, or at least that’s what they think of themselves, youTube has found the way to censor with the excuse of protecting feeble minds. The Maidan anniversary was celebrated by censoring the film “Crimea the Way Home” arguing that there are violent scenes in the film, and they require a very simple step to watch it, send them your credit card number or an ID card like a driver’s license. Bunch of cynics, when violent scenes from Maidan they’re hosting by the thousands, but from their point of view which is the POV of the cookie monster, that’s not violence but liberation. Zakharova commented that they were very reluctant to take remedial steps, but they were forced to. Twitter has been reduced to text only and Google is asking for trouble too. Some lawmakers have suggested to issue an international arrest order for Dorsey, whose company refuses to pay the very light fines imposed since 2017. What Russia needs to do is to keep investing in their own networks and publish material with fast access and english translations or subtitles, I’m sure they’re working on that. The IT leviathans are asking for trouble, they feel so invulnerable, and they are, almost all over the world, but just like China, Russia is going to clip their wings and of course the cries of free press, free this, free that and freedom fries will only get louder and stupider. The narrative monopoly is lost, they’ll cry bitter tears just like they do about RT, they laughed about it when it started, they're not laughing anymore.

Posted by: Paco | Mar 14 2021 18:52 utc | 26

Below is a link to a The Register posting about NFTs – or non-fungible tokens that will appeal to the tulipbits folk

"We can't avoid it any longer. Here's a story about the NFT mania... aka someone bought a JPEG for $69m in Ether
How can we put this? Imagine beanie babies were screenshots that needed their own power plant

Posted by: psychohistorian | Mar 14 2021 18:58 utc | 27

Posted by: juliania | Mar 14 2021 18:34 utc | 25

Re; Aleppo - I see that the Russians/Syrian-Arab-Army are attacking the bootleg oil traders there today.

Posted by: Bemildred | Mar 14 2021 19:01 utc | 28

thanks b! much appreciated...

i liked seeing the articles from the donbass area and seeing the article on some in the ukraine wanting to name places after bandera is a jolting reminder too..

@ Dogon Priest | Mar 14 2021 17:13 utc | 14... that's a great track from amos milburn.. i hadn't heard him do that before...

@ Paco | Mar 14 2021 18:52 utc | 26... i agree with you about all that... and, i can still pull up the video on youtube from 2015 -Crimea The Way Home

Posted by: james | Mar 14 2021 19:02 utc | 29

Posted by: juliania | Mar 14 2021 18:34 utc | 25

Yes, there is definitely a lot going on there east of Aleppo.

Posted by: Bemildred | Mar 14 2021 19:06 utc | 30

@NemesisCalling | Mar 14 2021 18:14 utc | 22

Stupid hateful racist retard.

Posted by: Lurk | Mar 14 2021 19:09 utc | 31

Posted by: james | Mar 14 2021 19:02 utc | 29

That's their Achilles heel, there is always a way around. I watched that film already, but sometimes I've tried to check excerpts of stuff that I've purchased legally, like the film Morfiy by Balabanov, and found myself confronted with giving the whole house to those assholes, I mean my credit card and/or an identity card, don't they know enough about us users already? It is becoming a cancer, the obssesion to have absolute control. Fortunately there are ways around, of course, but it's always a pain in the butt and a waste of time.

Posted by: Paco | Mar 14 2021 19:51 utc | 32

A technical caveat to vk@20, if I may.
A socialist economy for the world would not necessarily require a drop in the standard of living for the mass of the US population. The assumption that it does is the equivalent of saying that imperialism really does profit every US citizen (including illegal immigrants as well as discriminated against minorities.) And insofar as there is a necessary decrease in property values, a lot of it means things like, a decrease in property values, which are no longer bid up in an unequal capitalist market. So far as genuine living standards, as in living, not expecting to cash out the rise in ever increasing real estate prices (for those who aren't in one of those flyover places,) is not so much a decrease in living standards in the everyday sense of the phrase. It's a loss of higher class status. Being expect to work for a living (for those who can) is not a decrease in living standards either. Not being able to buy gold bathroom fixtures may be a decrease in living standards...but how many of us are doing that anyhow? Not having the money to buy access to your governor or senator may be a drop in the living standard for a few of us, but not most.

If becoming the smaller economy meant the majority of us would live worse, then we should be supporters of Biden, because China's success would impoverish us. The China Dream coming true would be an American Nightmare. (Nobody should ever be a Trumper because Trump's fatheaded tariff war shenanigans were as gross a failure as Jefferson's Embargo Act.)

Posted by: steven t johnson | Mar 14 2021 19:54 utc | 33

@vk,
sure, I'm not describing what is likely to happen anytime soon.

It's just going back to your comment 4, where one commenter says "The money will go back into the American economy" and the other replies: "The money spent by poorer Americans goes mostly to China.", the second commenter is right, I think.

Keynesian fiscal stimulus will not work in the US; the multiplier is insignificant. If the worker getting the raise spent that extra $500/month on goods produced in America, that would stimulate the economy. But if he buys things produced abroad, there is no effect.

And again: if they just want to help the workers, they could do Friedman's negative tax or something. Instead, they raise labor costs in the US, causing more unemployment, either thru offshoring or cutting non-essential services. Not to mention more criminal activity, payments under the table.

But hey, I don't want to sound like I believe it's a horrible disaster, it's not the end of the world, of course.

Posted by: Mao Cheng Ji | Mar 14 2021 19:56 utc | 34

Posted by: snake | Mar 14 2021 14:23 utc | 3

Just ask Julian Assange. And the co-opted courtier corporate press is completely quiet. The new normal.

Posted by: _K_C_ | Mar 14 2021 19:59 utc | 35

Posted by: steven t johnson | Mar 14 2021 19:54 utc | 33

Are you joking? It would be an INCREASE in living standards and economic mobility for nearly every American.

Why America Sucks at Everything

Posted by: _K_C_ | Mar 14 2021 20:01 utc | 36

The true American Nightmare would be war with China. 1914 with nukes!

Posted by: lysias | Mar 14 2021 20:06 utc | 37

Compared with that, why would a drop in the U.S. standard of living matter?

Posted by: lysias | Mar 14 2021 20:13 utc | 38

Posted by: Mao Cheng Ji | Mar 14 2021 17:33 utc | 17

I don't see how lower unemployment would lower profits. It seems to me it's the opposite: more people working, getting higher wages, consuming. More demand, economic boom, good times. Of course it's not forever, but we haven't seen any of it for what, 20 years? It would be nice to have it, for a change.

Sounds like an excellent argument for a $15+ minimum wage in the USA. That said, of course automation costs actual jobs. At any given moment it's a zero sum game regarding how many jobs are available. Claiming that automating grocery checkouts, inventory, bank tellers, etc. increases employment is just false beyond the pale. I worked at an AI firm in the USA (firm based in UK) for the last several years I was there. They admit to their clients in sales pitches that it will reduce overhead....in the form of salaries/wages. C'mon....

Posted by: _K_C_ | Mar 14 2021 20:14 utc | 39

@ Posted by: steven t johnson | Mar 14 2021 19:54 utc | 33

Yes, in a socialist system, it would be a completely new story. But, as Mao Cheng Ji uses Trump as a model, I'm assuming he wants to keep the capitalist system intact and just fix it. In that case, the constraints of the Law of Value (exploitation of labor, profit rate, etc. etc.) still apply.

Posted by: vk | Mar 14 2021 20:16 utc | 40

_K_C_@36 catches me out a little. I do in fact think that after the transitional period of recovery from the sabotage of the capitalists, this would be true. But this is an extremely right-wing forum where people actually believe in capitalist economics/apologetics and believe the crudest anti-Communist slanders about socialism doesn't work. You know, visions of the world drawn from Atlas Shrugged. Look at Mao Cheng Ji endorsing Milton Friedman!

It was vk who inadvertently implied (I hope) that the masses of the American people are greedy pigs who have been sucking the world's blood and would have to suffer salutary poverty to punish them for their sins.

Posted by: steven t johnson | Mar 14 2021 20:16 utc | 41

@31 lurk

You didn't notice, but I was commenting on the racism employed by those who think that blacks can't do math because it is intriniscally a white endeavor.

I merely extrapolated further onto that line of thinking, in jest.

Lost on you, I see.

Posted by: NemesisCalling | Mar 14 2021 20:16 utc | 42

@james #29

He is the original. Plus. Not a bad combo. Just tends to put you on your azz after two rounds

Posted by: Dogon Priest | Mar 14 2021 20:21 utc | 43

69 Mo from Ether... seems there is a lot of money to recycle these days.

Posted by: Mina | Mar 14 2021 20:23 utc | 44

NemesisCalling

That cracked me up. Lmbao

ADKC
Ain't heard much about Donbass recently, I guess Ratheon and Mr secretary of defense is planning to make a pretty penny

Posted by: Dogon Priest | Mar 14 2021 20:25 utc | 45

Posted by: steven t johnson | Mar 14 2021 20:16 utc | 41

Certainly. The capitalist class - meaning the 0.01%, i.e.; the effective oligarchy/modern aristocracy - would do everything they could to sabotage it, as they are currently doing whenever the concept of M4A or UBI comes up. But it'll never happen in the USA. Even the "resistance" party, the Democrats - falsely complimented by the right as "socialists" or even "marxists" in that country - are fully controlled and co-opted by capital. It's a done deal. Oh, yes occasionally the AOCs and Omars will make noise, but ultimate fall in line. Outliers like Tulsi will be relegated to the far fringes and excluded from the discourse by the mainstream corporate illiberal media.

To that point, the USA employs a massive socialist system known as the department of "defense"....the benefits (assuming you're not maimed or left with PTSD should you actually be deployed are among the best in the country. I worked with several very well off retired military dudes who traveled the world in the Navy and turned their service into door-opening, resume building forays into corporate America. Especially the ones who go into the "defense" contracting industry - there's real taxpayer money to be made there and more and more will be outsourced (privatized) in the future as invasions and occupations become unpalatable to the public (as if their opinion matters). But private and robot armies will surely square off against China and Russia in the South China Sea and former Soviet satellite states. All the better if they're privately managed and completely unaccountable to the taxpayer, but now I'm way off topic.

Posted by: _K_C_ | Mar 14 2021 20:37 utc | 46

Latest from Donbass news;

https://dan-news.info/en/

Posted by: vetinLA | Mar 14 2021 20:44 utc | 47

@NemesisCalling | Mar 14 2021 20:16 utc | 42

Lost on you, I see.

Yeah, you lost me when your attempt at irony failed to make much of an actual point and got stuck in a mostly empty summation of ugly stereotypes about black people in the USA.

If you honestly attempted to achieve the opposite of what effect your prose had on me, then please accept my apologies for my reaction and consider it in retrospect addressed towards any supposed racists that you answered to. In any case I implore you to develop a more refined practice of the ironic style of expression in the interest of esthetics and communicativity.

Posted by: Lurk | Mar 14 2021 20:57 utc | 48

snake @ 21; Thanks for the reply and explanation. And, I wish I could write as well as you and others do here at MoA:)....

Posted by: vetinLA | Mar 14 2021 18:33 utc | 23


Usually if I'm reading a post and start struggling to understand what the poster is writing, I find the post was written by snake or steven t johnson. My sympathies to those who engage with them.

Posted by: tucenz | Mar 14 2021 21:05 utc | 49

FUKUSIs never stop: Asma al-Assad being investigated for "war crimes," may lose UK citizenship. Meanwhile actual past and present war criminals carry on.

Posted by: spudski | Mar 14 2021 21:05 utc | 50

Lurk
Bruh, I don't know your race but you sound white...

So do us black folk a favor and stop seeing race in everything

I grew up in the segregated south and remember colored only signs.

Nothing about NemesisCalling retort was racist...your heart is in a good place but chill G

Posted by: Dogon Priest | Mar 14 2021 21:07 utc | 51

@Dogon Priest | Mar 14 2021 21:07 utc | 51

I sort of apologized to NemesisCalling and I'll shut up.

But not before I - in a fit of obnoxious virtue signalling - want to mention the racism in your post. It's a subtle racism and obviously devoid of dehumanizing stereotypes, so it will not trigger me into cursatory yelling, but it's still racism of sorts, categorizing you/me/us/them in terms of color or race.

Posted by: Lurk | Mar 14 2021 21:51 utc | 52

@ Posted by: NemesisCalling | Mar 14 2021 18:14 utc | 22 & 19

Your sarcasm mimics, is redolent of, its alleged target, venturing one watermelon too far past plausible deniability amongst former First Slave Republic usan 'white' folk.

Still too close for comfort after hundreds of years of injustice, ongoing, but wasn't that your point?

Posted by: suzan | Mar 14 2021 22:02 utc | 53

@48 lurk

I am sorry you needed a /sarc tag.

That is not my fault.

You couldn’t make the connection how the incorrect point of blacks being inherently poor in math and other “western” (read: white) fields of study lacks understanding in history: Islam in the MENA gave birth to algebra, for instance.

You don’t see how the original point of blacks being bad at math recoils and defaults to other problematic and racist lumping. So they are bad at math...well, what are they good at? Critical Race Theorists do not realize the problem of assigning the racist stamp to just about everything: it pigeonholes blacks even further back into caricature territory.

Did you even read Dogon’s link?

Pfttt. Smh

Posted by: NemesisCalling | Mar 14 2021 22:03 utc | 54

"can't we all just get along". Rodney King

No biggie. It's all good. I'm a year away from 60. And what I know of racism, simple tropes don't match

Posted by: Dogon Priest | Mar 14 2021 22:11 utc | 55

Great overview of the dynamics between Turkey and Iran in Iraq:

Turkey and Iran in a Battle for Iraq: Not Peace, Not War (EurAsia Daily, Pyotr Makedontsev, March 5, 2021 — machine translation)

(Note: the third to last paragraph is a play on Stalin’s famous phrase “Life has become better”.)

Posted by: S | Mar 14 2021 22:17 utc | 56

Paco @26--

Pepe Escobar posted the following letter, initially posted at the 21 Silk Rd FB Group, at his FB regarding Jack Ma's ownership of the South China Morning Post (SCMP) that I hadn't known before and is quite likely why the IPO failed and Ma's seemingly disappeared like a Gang of Four member:

"BATTLE FOR SCMP: MY LETTER TO JACK MA

"Since its founding in 1903, the South China Morning Post has been Hong Kong’s dominant English-language newspaper. It was the authoritative “paper of record” during colonial times, as it reflected the thinking of the ruling Brits. Post-1997 reunification with China, SCMP become the mouthpiece of neocolonialism, especially after Alibaba’s purchase of a controlling stake in 2016.

"Outsiders often say: Just ignore the paper. In the real world, that’s just not possible. For SCMP, particularly after Alibaba’s new investments in human and material resources, remains the Anglophone media outlet with the most extensive coverage of China (and Hong Kong). For people worldwide with an interest in the world’s most populous and dynamic nation, it is a must-read.

"And for Anglophones who follow China, Hong Kong and Asia, SCMP’s editors generally identify the right stories to cover. Problem is, they cover them from the wrong angles -- neocolonialist, Western-oriented perspectives, instead of Chinese and Asian-centered ones. Even in terms of pure business logic, that’s anachronistic and backward-looking, notably in the 21st century as China and Asia get set to move to the forefront of world affairs.

"Hong Kong itself is embarking on a major political and economic reset, with Beijing at the reins. The time is right for a similar overhaul at the SAR’s English voice to the world… one that could also be China’s.
In fact, the idea has been germinating a little while. Let’s rewind to November 2019, when the Black Terror in Hong Kong was approaching a climax. A small group of local friends with high-level ties in the mainland approached me with an idea.

"The Black Terror was morphing into a full-scale color revolution, they said, and it was important to tell the world the story of what was really going on in Hong Kong. And in most respects, it was the opposite of what Western MSM were saying. SCMP, they noted, was doing a disgraceful job, basically echoing the biased, agenda-driven Western narratives.

"So my friends suggested we appeal to Alibaba mastermind Jack Ma -- during whose helmsmanship the company bought control of the paper -- to do something. I drafted a letter. My friends went through it, then passed it to their mainland contacts for delivery to Jack Ma. Before long, word came back that it was done, and Ma apparently read it. Here’s what it said:

"The South China Morning Post is one of Asia's oldest and most venerable English-language newspapers. While Hong Kong was under British rule, the paper served as a leading voice of Western colonialism and its interests in the region.

"When your esteemed company took a controlling stake in the paper nearly four years ago, many in Hong Kong and Asia hoped for an update in SCMP’s editorial orientation that would reflect the spirit and reality of the changing times. After all, Hong Kong’s return to China in 1997 had ended the age of Western colonialism in the region.

"Many readers, including myself, had high hopes. Would SCMP, under Chinese ownership, be able to break with its outdated tradition of projecting biased and blinkered Western, colonialist perspectives? Could it carve for itself a historic new role -- by becoming the world’s leading English-language news publication on China (and Hong Kong)? Would a revamped, revitalized SCMP be able to project authentic and balanced Chinese views, in English, to the world? That would help fill a growing need for foreigners to understand the fast-rising country -- on its own terms, not Western ones. Also, could the paper even help Hong Kong reconnect with its motherland during the SAR’s post-colonial transition?

"An SCMP that could do all that would deliver invaluable content. It would surely be required reading, among both sophisticated Chinese AND the increasing number of foreigners worldwide, especially those in investment, commerce and even politics. They need to understand China -- without distortion, much less demonization -- and interact with it.

"Alas, those hopes have been dashed. SCMP has indeed changed under Alibaba's ownership -- but in the opposite direction. Since 2016, the publication has become distinctly more Sinophobic. Sadly, perhaps even shockingly, SCMP today seems even more (neo)colonialist than during colonial times.

"This unhappy retrogression can be seen both in the reporting and in the opinion-writing. And it has been especially pronounced during the past five months of political turmoil in Hong Kong.

"Overall, there are far more articles negative to China than positive. In reported stories, Sinophobic sources and interviewees get more space and emphasis than those who are objective or sympathetic to China. Slants unfavorable to Beijing can easily be seen. They are often manifested in headlines, and the choice of angle with which to frame a story. On any given news event, standard Western interpretations are highlighted in SCMP far more often than any Chinese ones.

"The opinion pieces seem even more lopsided. Over the past couple of years, the paper’s stable of columnists has seen a steady expansion of Sino-skeptics and outright Sinophobes. They include both Western and Asian writers. Many of them have outsiders’ views of events in China, Hong Kong and Asia. Much of what they write is hardly distinguishable from the infamously China-hostile stuff in Western mainstream media. They share the ignorance and biases of those writers.

"By today, anyone who does not see these problems is either 1) not paying close enough attention to SCMP’s daily contents, or 2) not sufficiently fluent in English to grasp the nuances. The links at the end of this letter provide many examples from online discussions of the aforementioned problems.

"Day-to-day coverage aside, SCMP is in danger of leaving a more nefarious legacy: training a generation of young Chinese journalists (both Hong Kongers and mainlanders) in the worst English-journalism traditions of biased, condescending and hostile writing about China.

"Many readers are asking: Why is all this happening under Alibaba’s ownership? Does the management not care that its flagship English platform -- the only one on Chinese soil -- is taking an approach to China and Hong Kong coverage similar to that of the US and its allies, at a time Washington is doing its best to demonize and beat down China?

"Hopefully, you will take these issues to heart. I have cited them for your reference (list below), hoping that Alibaba and SCMP will do well by Hong Kong and by China at this historic juncture … and long into the future. Changing times call for changed thinking and products, in journalism as much as anything else.

"With best wishes,
Thomas Hon Wing Polin.... [Omitted list of links to SCMP articles]

"EPILOGUE: As of now, there has been no word from Jack Ma or his representatives. Even as he has largely disappeared from public view, SCMP has continued to go its merry, neocolonialist ways.

"Will the CPC leadership’s recent review of Boss Ma’s businesses -- and their impact on the national interest -- include Hong Kong’s strategic Anglophone newspaper? Only time will tell."

The SCMP already resorts to paywall for its content, and it will eventually wither and die as it becomes increasingly irrelevant. Like Trolls, if the digital platforms don't get fed, they'll starve and die.

Posted by: karlof1 | Mar 14 2021 22:18 utc | 57

@55 dogon

Funny you mention Rodney King.

With Pepe le Pew being recently cancelled, I thought a good t-shirt idea would be the Rodney King scene on the hill with Pepe superimposed amongst the officers:

“Can’t we all jest git along?”

Posted by: NemesisCalling | Mar 14 2021 22:25 utc | 58

Scotland's Dirty War

An interesting further possibility

merganser says:
14 March, 2021 at 7:55 pm
Judicial review is a possibility; or a petition nobile officium, as there appear to be exceptional and unforeseen circumstances which require resolution, namely the two competing public interest matters:
1. The need for anonymity for complainants in sexual cases
2. The need for Parliament (through the Committee) to have access to all material necessary for them to properly carry out their review.

The problem is that only the Crown Office and Mr. Salmond’s lawyers have the material ( which could be considered in a ‘nobile officium’ by the court as it is specifically provided for in legislation ). ‘Every wrong must have a remedy’

So it is putting the ball back into Mr. Salmond’s court, as his solicitors are not allowed to share it with anyone else, and goodness knows he must be pretty weary with court proceedings by now.

Can’t think of any other way to get it all out into the open.

https://wingsoverscotland.com/the-wheels-of-the-bus/#comment-2630394

merganser, that's very interesting.

Can a nobile officium be used against unjust actions by the crown?

Posted by: John Cleary | Mar 14 2021 22:27 utc | 59

Exit polls for Rhineland-Palatinate and Baden-Württemberg came out:

Angela Merkel’s party takes a hammering in German state elections – exit polls

Looks like the Green Party is supplanting the CDU as the main preferential repository of Atlanticism (pro-USA ideology) in Germany. The two main parties from the Cold War era (SPD and CDU) seem to be slowly decaying or at least relative stagnation.

My impression here is that modern Germany is in stasis: the Germans know the present state is very far from ideal and will have to change, but they don't have a better option and don't know how to proceed. They don't have much time, though, as capitalism will enter more structural crises for the next decade or two, which will certainly erode Germany's present "export superpower at any cost" model; also, the USA has already sent a clear sign it won't collapse before its provinces: it will take them down before the first crack appears in the Metropolis.

Posted by: vk | Mar 14 2021 22:39 utc | 60

Ah! thanks Bemildred @ 28, this time when I came on I saw the post up in extra links -- thanks b! My search, such as it was, went to trying to find Syria news elsewhere and in comments, very interested how this might link up to the news about Ukraine...other places? Erdogan does seem to be putting his foot in it, and Ukraine is where I came in back in '14 - in from the cold, I mean. Today is Forgiveness Sunday, with tomorrow being the start of Lent, Orthodoxwise. So much that happened in both countries on the part of many towards the innocent will be very hard to forgive.

Posted by: juliania | Mar 14 2021 22:52 utc | 61

@vk, "in a socialist system, it would be a completely new story"

"Socialist system" is a 20th century concept. These days, it's about as topical as, say, the sermon on the mount. 20th century socialist experiments have either collapsed or evolved (China, Vietnam) into something else, becoming parts of global financial-capitalist economy.

What we have is victorious Financial International.

In my view, the current paradigm, current dialectic, dichotomy, is global finance vs national sovereignty. Capital above the nation vs the nation above capital. That's the struggle I'm seeing. And eventually it's going to synthesize into something, who knows what.

Posted by: Mao Cheng Ji | Mar 14 2021 22:55 utc | 62

@62 mao

Or it could just move back into the natural limits of the nation, having revealed for all time the horrors of globalism.

I misplaced my copy of the tao te ching, but one of my favorite passages is (not knowing the chapter):

"The way forward paradoxically oft-resembles the way back."

But the unique phenomenon of arrogance belonging to humans might be instrumental in tipping the whole card table over.

To (((them))) It is better that no one enjoy life if (((they))) should not be on top.

Posted by: NemesisCalling | Mar 14 2021 23:11 utc | 63

A very interesting development this past week has seen the beginning of a pushback against the US and NATO allies “weaponization” of human rights.

A group of 16 countries are using the language of the UN Charter at the UN against the “use or threat of force and unilateral sanctions”.
https://www.reuters.com/article/china-usa-un-int-idUSKBN2B336H

Concurrently, China and others condemned Australia at the UN Human Rights Council for issues such as criminal conduct by Australian troops in Afghanistan and conditions at offshore detention centres for refugees.
https://www.globaltimes.cn/page/202103/1218228.shtml

Expect to hear expressions of concern over the US track record on human rights when representatives of China and US meet in Alaska. The Americans have already indicated that they will be grandstanding on China’s human rights record at that meeting.

An indication of how this could play out can be taken from an appearance on CNN earlier in the week by David Scheffer - described as a “former US ambassador at large for War Crimes Issues” - who was on to describe why China’s activities in Xinjiang constitutes “genocide” even though there is not the mass death usually associated with the charge. Scheffer said: “Eliminate doesn’t mean to kill them all, which is the classic understanding of genocide. The genocide convention is far more sophisticated than that. If you undertake actions such as sexual violence, forced labour, killing leaders off or imprisoning them for the rest of their lives - you are sucking the blood out of that group…”

The above basically describes treatment in the USA, both contemporary and historically, of minority groups especially the black population and Native Americans. Fully expect the script to be flipped beginning in Alaska, and representatives of countries outside the western bloc will begin to pepper their public statements with descriptions of US genocides, human rights abuses , etc.

Posted by: jayc | Mar 14 2021 23:11 utc | 64

Sorry for not tieing-in to any of the usual geo-political et al. topics but: what the hell is the deal with wokeness and wokeism?

I have not been able to figure out anything about it. At all. As in: Who is benefiting, Who is it for, Why do it at all, What's going to come out of it. I have absolutely no idea who the purporting forces behind it are and what they may be expecting as a result. I do not understand why people are defending it or standing behind it. People who seem to be in support of this effort appear to be completely unable to come up with an argument beyond "We are against sexism/racism!" -- that said: I have rather limited social contact (not just because of C....) -- so I am not the most authoritative source on public opinion. At the risk of sounding overly naive and uninformed to this bars readership: What's the effing deal with this?

I don't see the point in destroying large parts of your education system in favor of wokeness (in other words: declaring mathematics as racist). I don't see how labeling large swathes of your population as "racists/sexists/meanies who just can't do any better" (depending on the country: "old white men") is going to help with anything anywhere whatsoever. I am completely stumped on this topic. People purporting this can -- at most -- only come up with ways to deconstruct what's already around, but they can't come up with anything to enhance or just substitute it. Destroying things (and as it seems: for no good reason) has always been easier than building something new.

All I can find about this are the accolades from people who think they are benefiting from this ideology (mostly "left", though I resent the left/right scheme of ordering political opinion) and resentful down-talking from people who think they aren't (mostly "right"). This can't be a major case of collective self-hypnosis and self-delusion, can it?

Again: What's the deal with this? This seems more irrational than the raging russophobia among western elites. Can anyone here help shed a light on this? (And please do treat me like an idiot; I don't claim to be a big expert on ideological/political topics. I am just curious and interested and this bar seems to attract rather interesting and sometimes knowledgeable people :)

Posted by: pachinko | Mar 14 2021 23:29 utc | 65

Posted by: jayc | Mar 14 2021 23:11 utc | 64

An indication of how this could play out can be taken from an appearance on CNN earlier in the week by David Scheffer - described as a “former US ambassador at large for War Crimes Issues” - who was on to describe why China’s activities in Xinjiang constitutes “genocide” even though there is not the mass death usually associated with the charge. Scheffer said: “Eliminate doesn’t mean to kill them all, which is the classic understanding of genocide. The genocide convention is far more sophisticated than that...”

The greatest "genocide" of the 21st century is the de-Russification and ethnic cleansing of eastern Europe. It started with the apartheid policies in the Baltic States and then moved on to the Ukraine.

P.S. - 70% of Ukrainians are not allowed to speak their own language.

Posted by: Petri Krohn | Mar 14 2021 23:48 utc | 66

Wokeness is merely one psychological device among many tools, to divide and rule, by the (((usual suspects))).

Identity politics, LGBTQetc, Antifa, BLM... censorship, suppression of dissent, gaslighting... probably several more escape me right now.

Posted by: Featherless | Mar 14 2021 23:59 utc | 67

@ pachinko | Mar 14 2021 23:29 utc | 65 who asks
"
what the hell is the deal with wokeness and wokeism?
"

The short answer is that it is another narrative control effort to further divide/conquer or the recent term, atomize the populace.

And, if it was truly wokeness/wokeism then it would be about the Western social contract with the cult of global private finance at the core......kinda like OCCUPY 2.0

The talking down to others part for me has always been about the impact of the monotheistic religion I was raised under, Catholic. The bible says that humans should rule all other beings, use the earth as their property and prosecute others that don't hold the same belief. We just have to read recent comments of our good MoA Catholic NemesisCalling to see examples of superiority talking....none ever explained to him that maybe the "wrong" aspects of human "value" are being measured....its a slippery slope once you take that leap of faith and let others tell you what to think and believe.

See, we never quite made it through that Western Enlightenment period entirely to rid ourselves of the scourge of faith over reason and logic. If we did we wouldn't be living under the worst monotheistic religion of them all, the God of Mammon cult (those owning global private finance)......that is the wokeism we need and much effort has and continues to be expended to insure that clarity of the world we live in does not rise to the surface of Western consciousness.

Posted by: psychohistorian | Mar 15 2021 0:00 utc | 68

@pachinko | Mar 14 2021 23:29 utc | 65

The real issue is about social class.

The dominant paradigm on ethnic categorization cautiously evades and obscures the real dividing lines between classes.

Positive discrimination favoring "blacks", "hispanics", "muslims" or whatever category will never make a real difference, because this will only allow mobility between lower and lower middle class. As such, it will never be a threat to the upper classes, who get to watch from a comfortable distance the spectacle of the identity-based subcastes of the lower and lower middle class compete for each other's place.

Breaking up the upper class monopolies and truly leveling the playing field for everybody across all classes is the only solution. But as you may have noticed, that is not on the woke radar.

Posted by: Lurk | Mar 15 2021 0:05 utc | 69

Oh, and open borders for plenty of immigration. Makes a society less cohesive and able to deal collectively with abuses by government and leaders.

Wokeness is the music of the pied piper, who is thinking only of his own interests, unbeknownst to the children following him in the merry dance.

Posted by: Featherless | Mar 15 2021 0:05 utc | 70

who is behind this coup? the democracy seekers were gunned down.. why is the military interested in denying democracy, why is the military taking over a nation state..especially when the governed are not in favor of it? Which private interest is funding them. who benefits.. ? There is no state interest in forcing a change in government. but there are usually many private persons (investors, slave traders, and oligarchs interested in extracting a nation's wealth) interested in-forcing a democratic government out of power. in civilian life taking someone's resources is called theft.

tucenz @ 49 truly sorry I don't write the way you read..thanks for the comment.

Posted by: snake | Mar 15 2021 0:13 utc | 71

@29 Renaming places after Banderistas doesn't seem like a very smart move if you want to get US/Israel support.

"It is “fully understandable” that Ternopil seeks to “honor those who fought against Soviet Communism,” wrote Efraim Zuroff, the Eastern Europe Director of the Simon Wiesenthal Center, but not those behind “the mass murder of innocent fellow citizens.”"

https://www.timesofisrael.com/ukrainian-senior-academic-proposes-renaming-city-of-uman-after-nazi-collaborator/

Posted by: dh | Mar 15 2021 0:15 utc | 72

@65 pachinko

It's a great and broad topic. It does seem like a great spiritual evil beguiling nations in their self-defeating stupidity. Especially in the academic sector of life, it seems that wokeism is a poison well.

Some throw it at the feet of postmodernism or globalism. You wouldn't be wrong in doing this. Some throw the problem at the feet of public schooling and marketing, which convince young people that the conservative lifestyles of their parents is inadequate in the spiritual need of total fulfillment or life-project.

It's push-off point seems to be the "self," so some blame can certainly be thrown at the effect of Descartes who ushered in modern philosophy with his Meditations.

It does seem to dispense with Aristotilean "Concepts," and so grounds itself in measurable materialism wherever it can, disposing of spirit, morals, and virtue.

Whatever it is, it is only here for a short while. It is not rational and hence will be disposed of in short order by the dialectical force of history which Hegel makes clear.

It really is just a minor annoyance. Anyone who espouses such a position, I immediately turn off and away from dialogue with. It is utter hubris to overlook the mountain of history in its age-old wisdom for the fly-by-night urban materialists who can't decide whether they are economic or cultural marxists. It is surviving merely by the good-nature of classical conservatives who are patient and want their sons and daughters back from the great blurring-machine of academia. But it is doomed, nonetheless.

Praise be to our Lord, Jesus Christ!

Posted by: NemesisCalling | Mar 15 2021 0:17 utc | 73

@ 32 paco.. thanks.. i agree with you...

@ pachinko | Mar 14 2021 23:29 utc | 65 .... good question and welcome to moa! i think you will find those who are independent minded just skip with this fake lingo b.s. although i like what featherless and the others say for the most part too... it is hard to skip over what is put in our faces 24-7 isn't it? especially when it is mostly b.s. and put in our face all the time.. you are supposed to think you are losing your mind, but if you've read this far, you realize you haven't.. you are just a wee bit too independent minded, lol..

@ dh | Mar 15 2021 0:15 utc | 72.. true! and funny enough b linked to that as well which is why i threw that in... crazy stuff seems to no no limits in those pushing the agenda in ukraine..

Posted by: james | Mar 15 2021 0:39 utc | 74

@74 Ah yes.....I see the link now....sorry b.

The Ukraine stand off does look a lot like second generation nazis versus the new type of Russian communists. Though I suspect it also comes down to which language you speak as far as Donbass is concerned. Not sure where Israel fits in.

Posted by: dh | Mar 15 2021 0:50 utc | 75

The earbud basement zombie is not our president.
He did not win any election.
He does not have an 'administration'.
Anything the earbud basement zombie does, or tries to do, is being attempted from outside the boundaries of the actual laws of our people, our land, and our nation.
Period.

Posted by: Josh | Mar 15 2021 1:00 utc | 76

@ psychohistorian | Mar 15 2021 0:00 utc | 68:

I somewhat understand the divide-and-conquer-scheme of riling people up against each other to prevent them from challenging the top of the pyramid, but I don't understand how wokeness is sustainable in the long term. In my understanding, you'll eventually reach a point where everyone is opposed to everybody and society at large becomes dysfunctional since no one is really willing to work with each other anymore -- no sense of nation, society, tribe or anything left. At that point you can't simply replace wokeness with another bogeyman and expect everyone to blindly accept (or maybe you can? I don't know).

In other words: what is this supposed to lead to? There are things people can't do on their own, but when they categorically refuse to work with each other for ridiculous and superficial reasons... what's supposed to happen? How can some higher power benefit off this other than exploiting this scheme until the end and then flee the sinking ship in time hoping to escape the consequences?

For just another attempt at obscuring reality wokeism seems to me awfully invasive and unpredictable in its consequences -- wouldn't be the first time some decision makers overestimated their intelligence though.

@ Lurk | Mar 15 2021 0:05 utc | 69

Similar to my text above: wokeism will keep certain subgroups of society occupied for a while, but what about the long-term effects? The upper classes will have a fine time watching the peasants jumping at each others throats, but ultimately it's the peasants who supply the basis for the upper-classes' prosperity. I don't see how the consequences of wokeism can be undone and rolled back when the foundation is completely consumed and decision makers decide "that was nice, but now on to something completely different".

It's obvious that wokeness is not supposed to change any fundamental fact about our societal makeup, but what exactly is it supposed to change?

---
On the other hand: maybe it's fitting that wokeism seems to be an exclusively western phenomenon. Maybe it's a combination of too much peace at home for too long of a time that causes this kind of obsessive-compulsive problem-seeking. I still cannot wrap my head around any of this though. The more I read about this the less I understand.

Posted by: pachinko | Mar 15 2021 1:19 utc | 77

@77 Wokeism, so it seems to me, appeals to people who want to change the way society is structured. Having lived through the sixties I understand how some kind of 'alternative' system can be attractive especially to young people. Now that I'm older (and more cynical) I expect wokeism to morph into something more in tune with reality. But I get what Lurk is saying about the lack of social cohesion. There is a real danger of that but I won't be around to see it.

Posted by: dh | Mar 15 2021 1:31 utc | 78

Pachinko, “wokeness” and “victim culture” are infantilizing, and therefore disempowering, not only socially, but also individually, which fits in nicely with the idea of reducing the numbers of “useless eaters”, which are of no use to the .01%. So let society crash, let those that can stay “hip” (duped) follow the trends and live another day if they can, or else, too bad. And those that can continue to be functional will be part of the streamlined, post-reset reality. So the change it is meant to serve is Malthusian.

Posted by: Featherless | Mar 15 2021 1:33 utc | 79

Dh, these phenomena, like Antifa and BLM etc. are about co-opting something that has natural roots and putting it to use politically, to create trouble and disarm the root movement in a hijacky kind of way (astroturf).

For instance, Apparently the whole hippie drug movement of the 60’s was heavily infiltrated and coopted by govt in order to disempower and divide folks. To what degree, who knows.

Respect for people of other ethnicities, or equality for women, as examples, and twisting it so it becomes destructive.

Socio-politically, It’s like creating a drought, then drowning folks in this life-giving water, kinda like the covid mess + the annoying countermeasures make people react by rushing towards (dubious and risky) vaccines.

Posted by: Featherless | Mar 15 2021 1:45 utc | 80

Mina #15


A guy who claims he designs shit just got 70 Mo dollars for 'bitchain art'. What does that say of our times?


I think it says that we still insist on believing in the Fantastic. Perhaps it shows that art can still take the piss out of technology or economics and expose gross stupidity of extreme risk takers.

I posted something on the previous open thread to the effect that at the base of all the great pyramids there is a mortuary temple. That probably says enough and we have not changed much in the 5000 years since.

The high priests like Craig White aka Satoshi Nakamoto are aggressive toward critics and, just like the priests of old, go after them with much cursing and screaming.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Mar 15 2021 1:59 utc | 81

Wokeism is just media channels with the sole purpose to get democrats elected, as Biden has proved when he walked back on ALL of his promises.

It's kinda like Qanon for the republicans, both are psy-ops. Never trust promises with no solution.

Posted by: Smith | Mar 15 2021 2:01 utc | 82

I'd echo a bit of what Featherless is saying. Wokeness is a way to channel establishment threatening altruism into something harmless or even beneficial to the establishment. It is how the pathway to hell becomes paved with good intentions.

Wokeness buries class consciousness and passive aggressively promotes inter-racial hostility.

Wokeness takes good intentions and puts them to work for the wicked. For instance, BLM should be protesting for more police in poor neighborhood's, not less.

Neocons/neolibs would love to see budget cuts to police forces as the police are a socialistic enterprise existing for the good of society.

Posted by: Haassaan | Mar 15 2021 2:05 utc | 83

@80 Yes I am familiar with that theory i.e. that any social movement is the creation of cynical forces. I suppose one could see it as youthful idealism being open to exploitation. I got caught up in the so-called 'hippie' movement in the sixties. Looking back I see it mostly as just a case of wanting to belong somewhere. And enjoying the music.

Posted by: dh | Mar 15 2021 2:06 utc | 84

Josh #76

The earbud basement zombie is not our president.

Correct he is your new Boss. The last earbud zombie president was tuned in to another channel as Lurk so ably linked. Read all of that link and especially the last half if the first half is tedious. But do read the lot.

The mafia that installed Trump is likely only a few degrees of separation from the mafia that installed Biden. Both of these 'presidents' are old hands at shakedown extortion rackets.

here is an interesting extract from the VISUP link:

As part of the arrangement made with Griffin, Trump ended up with the Taj Mahal, which his first wife Ivana ran for a time. At this point in time a curious pattern began to develop with Trump's business empire: projects were financed with massive amounts of debt, they went bankrupt and yet the owner did not seem to incur serious financial loses from these failures. This is a pattern not unfamiliar to Syndicate-backed businesses. And naturally there appears to have been an extensive, Mob-linked money laundering operation being run out of the Taj Mahal after Trump owned it outright.

It would certainly appear that Trump learned a thing or two from Resorts during his brief affiliation with them. This should also shatter any notion that Trump is some type of outsider --Resorts was as deep state, or more accurately, deep private, as it gets. Trump would not have ended up as the chairman with Peloquin on the board were he not in the club.

And finally, this should leave little doubt as to how pathetic the mainstream media's crusade against Trump really is. Only the gods know how much money has been pissed away on phantom Russian-connections when a few hours of Internet sleuthing will turn up connections between Trump and one of the most notorious criminal organizations of the 1970s and 1980s, which Trump served as the chairman of.

Sure you may be skeptical of this tale but then keep it mind. As Biden is fond of repeating - "nothing will change".

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Mar 15 2021 2:29 utc | 85

re wokeness

Can anyone trace where or how it got started? I get the impression it emanates from campuses, which I suppose links it directly to the spooks with their numerous psy-ops. But I don't know how accurate or comprehensive that is.

I wonder if it was/is injected into the culture through coordinated social media campaigns?

I'm glad to see commenters speak of simply ignoring it - how pervasive is it do we think, in US society today?

~~

US culture has always been heavily imbued with hypocrisy, in my experience and as I've seen noted by other countries. And wokeness seems like a pure distillation of hypocrisy, mixed with sanctimonious righteousness.

"Political correctness" seems like an early precursor to wokeness. And today's wokeness is political correctness on a razor-edge trigger, a very afraid and cowardly dynamic at root I think. It's an appalling reflection of the state of US thinking, but it also speaks of the tensions and strains in society.

Posted by: Grieved | Mar 15 2021 2:40 utc | 86

I happen to be an expert on this matter since I encountered it first hands.

Wokeness started somewhere in the Occupy Movement in the early 00s, and then emerged with niche movement like Atheism Plus where instead of providing people of solutions to problems (falling economy, upper class elitism being alien to most of the population), it provided "safe space" where people's feelings aren't hurt (they are still free to be poor and hungry otherwise).

It's exactly the same shit like the hippies movement in the 60s, where anti-Vietnam war people were feminized, molded into "pacifist", fueled with drugs and alienated from the general populace.

Posted by: Smith | Mar 15 2021 2:49 utc | 87

steventjohnson@33
You are correct- it is a common error to argue that imperial rulers bribe metropolitan working classes with some of the profits of imperialism. Generally speaking the reverse is true: imperialism is launched from a capitalist base in which the peasantry has been expropriated and impoverished. And then the violence practised in the empire is brought home and used against workers. Imperialism benefits only the ruling class, and its compradors in the empire.

snake@3 What you are lamenting, it seems to me, is the dissolution of socialist internationalism. There has long been an alternative to the capitalist media in the form of socialist and communist newspapers.
It has become conventional wisdom that the Communist Press was even less truthful than the MSM. But that is by means the truth. During the long post war period in which imperialism waged war against working people-socialists and nationalists- in the "Third World", during the Korean war the Mau Mau 'emergency', Vietnam and hundreds of other conflicts between imperialism and its victims, an alternative to the lies of the media in western countries could be found in the various Daily Workers, Humanites and their ilk. Pravda might not have been the truth but it was a lot closer to it than The Times or the BBC.
And these publications did make a difference: Wilfred Burchett was an important source in the anglophone world for the truth about Vietnam which, by 1968, was understood by the majority of, for example, most western european populations. The importance of IF Stone's tiny weekly newsletter is difficult to overestimate.
One of our problems today is that while there is enormous opposition to the system and its rulers it is unfocused and, in the worst sense of the word, anarchic. It is a paradox of our politics that while there is probably less support for the current hegemonic imperialist system than there has ever been, the system itself has never been less challenged. The United States, for example, is ripe for socialism but politically it is divided between two extreme, anachronistic and utterly untrustworthy political schools. Both of them equally opposed to what is the consensus of the popular will. And much the same can be said of almost all the NATO countries.

Posted by: bevin | Mar 15 2021 2:50 utc | 88

@86 I think the identity stuff started in the sixties. Not sure exactly how or why. Maybe a post-war reaction. That's when it became OK to be openly gay and we started listening to Blues music. Then came Elvis and the Beatles and it all became mainstream. Then it worked its way into the education system. Please don't get me wrong....I don't know if we're better off or not.

Posted by: dh | Mar 15 2021 2:56 utc | 89

Further to my #85 above.

A 2018 update from the same site.

Caution: when reading 'Russian mafia' it should rightly be referenced as including 'Israeli mafia' as there was a great migration of Russian jews to New York and only very few were mafiosi - like from anywhere else in the world. However this extract gives you the picture. Take this website content with caution as it smells a little like a Dimratss sympathiser but it is worth considering if these things are of interest.

It would appear that Bogatin was in fact quite a high ranking member in the Russian Mafia. The New Republic noted:

"... A Senate investigation into organized crime later revealed that Bogatin was a leading figure in the Russian mob in New York. His family ties, in fact, led straight to the top: His brother ran a $150 million stock scam with none other than Semion Mogilevich, whom the FBI considers the 'boss of bosses' of the Russian mafia. At the time, Mogilevich—feared even by his fellow gangsters as 'the most powerful mobster in the world'—was expanding his multibillion-dollar international criminal syndicate into America."

So here is Mogilevitch again with operations in USA. This man is the capo di capo and he hangs out in the EU without a care in the world. No one goes after this mafia boss. WHY NOT?

Bogatin was not the only associate of the notorious Semion Mogilevich to take up residence in Trump Tower either. The New Republic goes on to note that in the early 1990s another associate was a tenant there --one Vyachelsav Kirillovich Ivankov, an alleged enforcer for Mogilevich.

Ivankov reportedly arrived in the United States in 1992 and quickly set up an elaborate protection racket bolstered by Russian Special Forces veterans Ivankov personally recruited. During his time in New York, before his 1995 arrest, he was a frequent guest at Trump's Taj Mahal casino in Atlantic City (which, as was noted before here, was acquired from the notorious Resorts International) and kept a luxury condo at Trump Tower. He was ultimately deported in 2004 and assassinated in 2009 in Moscow.

As recently as 2013 it would appear the Russian mob was running rackets out of Trump Tower. The New Republic notes:

"In April 2013, a little more than two years before Trump rode the escalator to the ground floor of Trump Tower to kick off his presidential campaign, police burst into Unit 63A of the high-rise and rounded up 29 suspects in two gambling rings. The operation, which prosecutors called 'the world’s largest sports book,' was run out of condos in Trump Tower—including the entire fifty-first floor of the building. In addition, unit 63A—a condo directly below one owned by Trump—served as the headquarters for a 'sophisticated money-laundering scheme' that moved an estimated $100 million out of the former Soviet Union, through shell companies in Cyprus, and into investments in the United States. The entire operation, prosecutors say, was working under the protection of Alimzhan Tokhtakhounov, whom the FBI identified as a top Russian vor closely allied with Semion Mogilevich. In a single two-month stretch, according to the federal indictment, the money launderers paid Tokhtakhounov $10 million.

Felix Sater also occupied a floor in Trump Tower and is well known as a CIA fronted arms dealer and all round disreputable character. But he has connections and is also a loudmouth braggard. Trump would surely like him.

So I guess Trump is no saint, but then there aren't too many in the USAi and Biden is almost his equal and I guess has allegiance to another mafia faction.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Mar 15 2021 3:22 utc | 90

An excellent article from https://gowans.blog/ on the Canadian claim (a unanimous vote in Parliament, in which only MPs of the governing party seems to have been abstaining) that there is genocide in China.
Almost incredibly " the parliamentarians sought to buttress their motion by citing political opinion in the United States, where “it has been the position of two consecutive administrations that Uyghur and other Turkic Muslims are being subjected to a genocide by the Government of the People’s Republic of China,” the motion observed. In an act of unseemly subservience to imperial power, Canada’s parliament constructed a motion, based on no evidence, to echo a point of view articulated in Washington, also based on no evidence."
In other words Canada believes that there is genocide in Xinkiang because the US government does- the puppet has clearly fallen in love with its master. Or, to put it another way, Canada's MPs obviously believe that seeking clashes with China will win them votes, whether they are Quebec nationalists, pretend Social Democrats, Conservatives, Greens or Liberals. And provoking nuclear war is a small matter when compared with the importance of preserving their over paid positions in Ottawa, where, until they were wiped out in one of many Canadian genocides, indigenous nations used to thrive.

Posted by: bevin | Mar 15 2021 3:29 utc | 91

On Woke-ism; What total BS. Just another "made-up" piece of nothing, to further dilute the debate on the ongoing class war.

The real debates are on jobs and the wages received by the working under-classes, plus healthcare. Without adequate wages and healthcare, you have no life. Period, full stop.

Our rulers will coin, and push, through their media, any new phrase to stifle the REAL debate about wages and benefits.

Woke-ism is just one of many....More distraction is on the way..

Posted by: vetinLA | Mar 15 2021 4:12 utc | 92

by: bevin @ 88 Yes, Bevin. One of our problems today is that while there is enormous opposition to the system and its rulers [but] it is unfocused and, in the worst sense of the word, anarchic. It is a paradox of our politics that while there is probably less support for the current hegemonic imperialist system than there has ever been, the system itself has never been less challenged. <= I agree, your assessment is correct. But I think I may have identified the reason the system itself has never been challenged and why the deplorable governed rarely really act to fix things. That reason is expressed in 3; basically each nation state has a unique system of politics and the MSM, the culture, the educational system and just about every institution points to the political system as the go to to fix wrongs that need to be redressed and or to implement solutions that have merit. But the political system itself [different in form and procedure within each different nation state] is a decoy.. like a duck decoy.. it attracts the governed to feast on its power, but it rarely uses its power to fix things for the governed.

But those in control [the Oligarch and their corporations] are hiding in the duck blind just a few feet away, waiting to take down the governed who do not conform to the Oligarch and their corporate demands. Like a powerful mafia chieftain, the oligarch and their corporations rarely do the ditty work themselves.. They leave it to the politicians in the nation state. yet the politicians can only do what the Oligarch wants.

Its the whole nation state system [worldwide] that has all the governed separated into one of its cells (nation states). Once in a cell (you are born into one) the political system can manipulate your beliefs, adjust your understanding, and punish your non conformity all in accord to the pleasure of the Oligarch. Within the nation state the political system is localized so it becomes the local decoy, designed to attract into view the angry, discontented and ambitious. The political system is what people come to believe is the only place they can direct their efforts to change things. Somewhere or somehow within the political system the governed are taught, there is an answer to be found. But in actuality the political system is a non relevant target ( a mirage) (nothing the oligarchs don't want will ever result from deplorable effort to change the political system).

It is the political system the MSM keeps telling the people is to blame for the problems experienced by the governed. It is the political system that keeps reducing the power of the masses, by dividing the masses with binaries (abortion vs right to life, gun vs no gun) issues. and once the masses are divided the power of the people to fix things is reduced to the net difference between the two groups.

Those in control are the oligarch [they are hiding and camouflaged in their duck blinds] waiting to use the nation state to accomplish their private purposes for profit or power. Explains the wars. the regime changes, the use of force, massive military spending, the deployment of military forces around the globe in spite of the objections of the governed. The governed cannot profit (in fact it cost the governed) when their nation states use armed force and spend money tax money on foreign things to bring about wars, regime changes, and international trade agreements, etc.

Nearly all nation state effort sever but one client, the Oligarch. The political system is irrelevant to the needs or wants of the governed but to hear the MSM talk there is no other place the governed can go to.

Posted by: snake | Mar 15 2021 4:36 utc | 93

This Philippino FM is spot on,
First step in solving the Myanmar 'crisis',

FUKUS SHIT STIRRER, GET THE FUCK OUT !

https://larouchepub.com/pr/2021/20210213_philippine_fm.html

Posted by: denk | Mar 15 2021 5:27 utc | 94

uncle tungsten | Mar 15 2021 1:59 utc | 81

I posted something on the previous open thread to the effect that at the base of all the great pyramids there is a mortuary temple. That probably says enough and we have not changed much in the 5000 years since.

Except there is no evidence that great pyramids (Giza for example) contain 'mortuary temples' or even tombs.

Posted by: Norwegian | Mar 15 2021 6:48 utc | 95

Posted by: Norwegian | Mar 15 2021 6:48 utc | 95

The mortuary temple was outside the pyramid, I believe, at least until the tombs were built in the Valley of the Kings during the New kingdom. True, I do not think the pyramids have had any bodies of Pharoahs actually discovered in them.

Posted by: Bluedotterel | Mar 15 2021 7:23 utc | 96

Norwegian # 95

I agree with you that the pyramids contain no mortuary. They are around the base ie in a surrounding zone of the pyramids scattered here and there. Some are purpose built for the various elites and further removed are the construction class or so it seems. There may have been opportunistic burials in later years as strict adherence to rules relaxed or whatever.

I did not intend to say that Pyramids were all built for burials as the evidence shows clearly otherwise.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Mar 15 2021 8:17 utc | 97

On Afghanistan there are many moves and initiatives beyond the hamstrung militarised grunts emanating from washington.

NEO Author Vladimir Danilov writes: The International Community becomes Involved in a Peaceful Settlement in Afghanistan. This report outlines the efforts being applied.

during a press conference following talks between Sergey Lavrov and Afghan Foreign Minister Mohammad Hanif Atmar on February 26, Russia expressed its readiness to resume the format proposed by Moscow for consultations on Afghanistan. In particular, the Russian Foreign Minister stressed that Moscow will continue its efforts to ratchet up contacts between an expanded “troika” (triumvirate) – Russia, the United States, and China now bringing Pakistan on board – on worldwide assistance to help create the conditions for an intra-Afghan national reconciliation process.

As a follow-up to these discussions, a regular meeting of the expanded “troika” dedicated to this intra-Afghan settlement is scheduled for March 18 in Moscow involving special representatives sent by Russia, China, the United States, and Pakistan. The presence of delegations from Iran, Afghanistan and Qatar, prominent Afghan politicians, and Taliban representatives (this movement is prohibited in Russia) is anticipated. In particular, Moscow invited five Taliban representatives and a number of leaders from various political parties – ex-President Hamid Karzai, Marshal Abdul Rashid Dostum, Abdul Rasul Sayyaf, Mohammad Karim Khalili, Yunus Qanuni, and Sayed Mansour Naderi. “During the meeting, it is anticipated that we will discuss ways to help advance the intra-Afghan talks in Doha, reduce the level of violence, end the armed conflict in Afghanistan, and make this country an independent, peaceful, and self-sufficient state, one free from terrorism and drug-related crime,” read a statement on the Russian Foreign Ministry website. Zamir Kabulov, who is the Special Representative of the President of the Russian Federation for Afghanistan and the Director of the Second Asia Department at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, stated:

“It is not even a conference, but rather consultations among an expanded troika composed of Russia, the United States, China, and Pakistan. Yes, we are inviting representatives from the Afghan government, Afghan politicians, and a Taliban delegation.”

Danilov reveals NATO being trapped into blindly following USA dithering about its agreed May 1st withdrawal with the Taliban and highlights UN discussions etc.

This report sheds light on the international position and avoids being drowned out by prattle from propaganda media of the USA.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Mar 15 2021 8:28 utc | 98

New Eastern Outlook author Vladimir Terehov reports that the Indo Pacific Region (IPR) is an emerging zone where the belligerents of the west are poking salt into the eastern eye.

Terehov writes: "It is here, on the other side of the globe, that the former major colonialists are looking for a thrill. In the latest development, on February 9, a French nuclear attack submarine surfaced in the South China Sea. Two weeks later, a French frigate called into the Japanese port of Nagasaki: North Korea needs someone to look after it, you know. Where, one wonders, are the various troubles of the IPR, and where does the growing lump of French (British, German) problems lie?"

Gun boat diplomacy, western style and we have seen it all before. This is crappy, provocative, French idiocy and no doubt sanctioned by the ars hat Jens Stoltenberg who never met a sabre he didn't rattle.

What are they on about you might ask? "Located in the East China Sea, the five uninhabited islands with a total area of about 6 square kilometers, which in Japan are called Senkaku and in China Diaoyu, are among those few “particularly heated” zones, from which, under unfortunate circumstances, the flames of full-scale conflict could well erupt. Not only in the Indo-Pacific region, but also on a global scale."

The Senkaku/Diaoyu Islands are located approximately 150 km west of the southern Ryukyu Archipelago, which stretches 1,200 km from north to south from one of the four major Japanese islands, Kyushu, to Taiwan. From this last island, the Senkaku/Diaoyu Islands are 150 km away, from the PRC coast 300 km away. This geography serves as a reason for Beijing (as well as Taiwan, which is secondary) not to refer the disputed islands to the Ryukyu Archipelago.

History has had multiple episodes of 'ownership' claimed by this and that empire and even the good old USA had a grab at it after WWII and then 'swapped' it for Okinawa where it torments the Okinawans to this day, stealing more and more of their land and polluting every square meter possible.

This is worth reading as it provides a baseline to understand the fabric of national positions at play in this huge archipelago and even more huge ego contest.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Mar 15 2021 9:08 utc | 99

Don't think some of us haven't noticed how quiet you've gone on the Myanmar issue, b.

Now the military has declared open-season on the protestors and the body count is trending toward 150, if not higher. But hey, who cares right? It's just a fake 'color revolution' after all. You picked your side, you could at least post an update on what your coup boys are up to.

I'm sure you can dredge up a post from an obscure corner of Twitter to 'prove' the snipers are all actually American mercenaries, or something.

Posted by: Ben | Mar 15 2021 9:41 utc | 100

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