Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
March 21, 2021

The MoA Week In Review - OT 2021-023

Last week's posts at Moon of Alabama:

> [W]e do express our concern at the UK’s decision to increase its nuclear weapons arsenal, which is contrary to its obligations under Article VI of the NPT. It could have a damaging impact on global stability and efforts to pursue a world free of nuclear weapons.

At a time when nuclear weapon risks are higher than they have been since the Cold War, investments in disarmament and arms control is the best way to strengthen the stability and reduce nuclear danger. <

> Suffice to say, President Joe Biden had given an impression that his era would be “different”. He held out a raft of promises that diplomacy is back at the centre of US foreign policy. By doing so, Biden won enormous credit with world capitals. Yet, before the Biden presidency reaches the 100-day mark, the new administration is busy weaponising sanctions and acting like a bully on the world stage. <

Other issues:

Covid 19:

One year on and the CDC still does not understand aerosol transmission.


If your data is in the 'cloud' they have it:

Bitcoins Are Prosecution Futures:

Use as open thread ...

Posted by b on March 21, 2021 at 13:12 UTC | Permalink

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@lulu | Mar 23 2021 13:31 utc | 191

Do they, esp. EU Parliament members who voted for this sanction, not have any shame and gray material in their brain when looking back at lies about Kuwaiti baby incubators ?

Shame? Why would you think they have?

Are they not afraid how the history will judge them for their stupid and reckless acting upon lies and lies to hurt not only the rest of the world but also their own citizens?

It makes you think they believe there won't be anyone to answer to, doesn't it?

Posted by: Norwegian | Mar 23 2021 16:24 utc | 201

karlof1 @201

Thank you for the many links and information!

Just wonder if the elites from the Global South would wake up from their daily dose MSM propaganda and year-long Western education/brainwash to see through the “rules-based order” is actually an oppressing order defined and dominated by the Western.

Posted by: lulu | Mar 23 2021 17:04 utc | 202

Lavrov qualified how he sees the term "bloc" utilized in his explanation of his interpretation of the contrived "Indo-Pacific region" during his talk with South Korean media I linked to @201:

"We will also speak about other Asian-Pacific matters. Interesting processes are underway in the region. Attempts are being made to reform it and to introduce the term Indo-Pacific region. We do not fully understand this. These are alarming processes, because an attempt is being made to create something that would be directly opposite to the ASEAN-based organisations such as the East Asia Summit, the ASEAN Regional Forum and the ASEAN Defence Ministers Meeting, which are unification forums. They involve all Asian-Pacific countries and are designed for conducting a dialogue on the basis of equality and for attaining mutually acceptable compromises and agreements.

"The advocates of the Indo-Pacific strategic tilt (they have even changed the terms) say it is the same idea but that it would be developing much more energetically. In point of fact, a closer look at the events held within the framework of the Indo-Pacific strategy will show that they are based on bloc mentality, that is, the establishment of blocs that are not designed to promote a positive process but are spearheaded against certain states. The proclaimed goals include the containment of some states, while other countries are left outside the boundaries of such initiatives. I do not see this as a thing that is positive.

"It would be useful to revitalise the principles which we have reaffirmed more than once, namely the preservation of ASEAN’s central role in the development of regional cooperation in all spheres." [My Emphasis]

So, I presume Lavrov would frown on my use of Eurasian Bloc despite its de facto exclusion from the EU/NATO Bloc. Given recent events however, I don't see the newly coined Indo-Pacific region gaining any currency as its three Asian members will are already involved with different Eurasian and East Asian organizations.

I did see numerous positives in Lavrov's overall message to the RoK, particularly the Nine Bridges concept whose beginnings were deterred by the pandemic but will be restarted. By 2030, I expect Asia to be Asian, the Outlaw US Empire having withdrawn to Guam or beyond.

Posted by: karlof1 | Mar 23 2021 17:09 utc | 203

EU shame? what for?
They fund Erdogan with investments over €9 billion in Turkey between 2007 to 2020, out of which €3.8 billion was allocated to so-called priority sectors: the rule of law, governance and human resources (which includes education, employment and social policies).

Posted by: Mina | Mar 23 2021 17:31 utc | 204

I also include cultural and civilizational factors.

When I think of the Third World, I think of Guatemala, Pakistan, India, What-used-to-be-called Central African Republic, the Philippines Islands, What-used-to-be-called Belgian Congo, What-used-to-be-called Somalia.

Posted by: fyi | Mar 22 2021 15:44 utc | 123

Anyone interested in comprehending the depths that Iran had sunk before the Pahlavis rejuvinated Iran, should get their hands on a ~100 year old National Geographic issue (iirc circa 1923) that had a multipage spread on "Persia".

Iran was a complete basketcase of a country, mired in superstition, bogus religiosity (which continues to date), and poverty. For "Mr." FYI to list "India" as 3rd world country while ignoring Iran is really rich. Having grown up in Iran ruled by the Pahlavis, I had no idea that merely 50 years ago Iran was in that state.

Regardless of the over-reach and crimes committed by Europeans, anyone here who talks of "civilization" should compare their country's condition from, say, 1700 to 1900, with Europe. It is embarrassing, frankly.

Also this "civilization and culture" matter needs to be addressed. Whether it is China or Iran, the -vital- period of both had long been passed. These latter day generations inherited the corrupt and putrid corpus of the previously vital "culture".

Someone asked whether that monster Mao's Cultural Revolution accomplished anything. It certainly removed that corrupt corpus from Chinese consciousness. Do you think the modern Chinese in PRC consults the I-Ching before making a decision? I bet they still do this in Taiwan.

So 3rd world designation can mean anything, but glorious civilization or not, the fact remains that Asia in its entirety had stagnated and nothing new or vital in terms of cultural products was produced in those period.

Also note, both these previously great nations (Iran, China) were ruled by foreigners (turkic and mongol) during their long and steady period of civlization decline. By the time the Europeans showed up, both of these cultures were comatose.

(@c1ue. Quite enjoyed reading your posts in this thread. I find you honest, rational, and informed. Keep it up, please. This forum certainly requires such input to counter the "alternative reality" of various ideologues and sock puppets here.)

Posted by: Iranian | Mar 23 2021 17:31 utc | 205

lulu @203--

Thanks for your kind reply!

It was announced today that the pipeline project announced in 2015 between Russia and Pakistan will be renamed Pakistan Stream and will begin construction in July 2021. Along with informational links about the project is one that goes to Russia's Official online portal of legal information which I hadn't encountered before that barflies might want to add to their Russia Folder.

I still haven't found the joint statement; however, CGTN had this to say about it in its statement related to its video news report:

"The statement says all human rights are universal, indivisible and interrelated. It also says international law is the cornerstone of the development of human society."

The verbiage is very much in line with what the Friends of the UN Charter group have said in their initial organizing statements. IMO, this new initiative anchored by Russia and China ought to be closely observed and promoted, and their joint statement aims in that direction.

Posted by: karlof1 | Mar 23 2021 17:43 utc | 206

Norwegian @202

Maybe because I am Chinese. The key of our culture DNA are 1) moral/ethics/shame based value system and 2) judgement by history.

In China, thanks to the habits of our ancestors, who kept on recording of the historic events and people involved in during our thousands years of history, what the emperors and officials have done and said during their time would get judged in a very long history time frame.

We have two pair famous sayings when comes to judge the famous and great:

- 名垂青史(ming chui qing shi: on the scroll of fame with lasting legacy);

- 遗臭万年(yi chou wan nian: leaving a bad name which will long be remembered/cursed, generation after generation.)

So, 名气(ming qi: reputation) and 节操(jie cao:moral integrity) are the highest standard/aim that Chinese emperors and politicians, in principle, should strive for.

That's why I though EU parliament members, who may have some sense of history and decency, would have thought twice before they acted upon the lies with holes bigger than Swiss cheese.

Btw, Xi Jinping once recited two sentences from an ancient Chinese poem at the Fifth Plenum of the 18th Central Committee of the CPC some years ago to show his determination to anti-corruption and dedication to serve the people:

“粉身碎骨浑不怕,要留清白在人间”(Not afraid to be shattered into muddy pieces in order to keep the moral integrity and clean reputation in the world).

An American journalist from NYT or WaPo, -can't remeber exactly-, in Beijing interpreted it as Xi's arrogance to try to splash his own reputation as high as the sky (sic)!

Imagine how shocked I was and still am when stumbled it on twitter! The Yankee journo either did not know any Chinese or purposely misled the readers.

Posted by: lulu | Mar 23 2021 17:50 utc | 207

@lulu | Mar 23 2021 17:50 utc | 208

Thank you for a very thoughtful answer that makes a lot of sense also in what used to be my culture. My reply was a cynical comment on the fact that these people in the EU do not seem to have any sense of history, and it follows they do not have any decency. This has been obvious for years now.

It is entirely alien to me how these people behave, I cannot understand it other than theorize that they are being threatened or there is mass insanity happening.

Btw., I have a lot of respect for the asian cultures (I know the Thai culture), including chinese. Your priciples are much the same as what I grew up with, but our society is now under attack.

Posted by: Norwegian | Mar 23 2021 18:24 utc | 208

Dr. George W Oprisko @ 33

During the 8-year long work of alleviating the 832 counties with 100 million population out of absolute poverty, there are 1800 people who came to remote rural village to help the poorest died in their poverty alleviation fighting. Most of them are CPC members, young and old.

If you are interested, you can use google or Deepl, a German online translation site to read some of their work and sacrifice.

In Sichuan Province alone, there are 150 died on their work to help the poor people. The youngest one is only 23!

People like Steven J. Johnson, and Neoliberals in the Western, are actually not interested in the well being of these poor Chinese. They are so entrenched in the ideology and racial hubris that they could not see any humanity in another political system (CPC) and another foreign society (China), which are so different from the Western Capitalist Orthodoxy.

Posted by: lulu | Mar 23 2021 18:31 utc | 209

Geopolitical analyst Glenn Diesen has an op/ed in today's RT that melds with Pepe Escobar's essay. His thoughtful piece makes the following important point:

"Were Russia and China accommodated in the post-Cold War international order? This question is rarely asked, yet it should be considered the most important question in contemporary international relations."

He explains the relation dynamics that have led to our current situation and concludes:

"The current international disorder is caused by an interregnum – the world is currently stuck between a unipolar and a multipolar format. The West is pushing for a return to the unipolar era that existed before sanctions on Russia and the economic war against China. However, the two Eurasian giants, Russia and China, have spent the past years adjusting to a multipolar system.

"The West will insist that on maintaining liberal hegemony due to a commitment and belief in liberal values, among elites (although that is no longer uniform), while Russia and China will reject a value-based system that is instrumental to impose an untenable unipolar order. There is no going back as the world has moved on, although the West is not yet ready to move forward."

Diesen along with George Szamuely participates in a very interesting Crosstalk that asks, "Reset for whom?", and touches on numerous topics we've recently discussed here at the bar, particularly my notion that the Neoliberal Big Reset is the same as its current Anti-Human policy but wrapped in a different series of obfuscations, which neither Putin or Xi agree with. Host Lavell asks some excellent questions so the show moves quickly through its 25 minutes.

Posted by: karlof1 | Mar 23 2021 18:35 utc | 210

Posted by: karlof1 | Mar 23 2021 16:20 utc | 201

It has not been translated yet, the russian text is here:

Posted by: Paco | Mar 23 2021 18:45 utc | 211

@karlof1 | Mar 23 2021 18:35 utc | 211

Thank you, Diesen is one of the few fellow countrymen I can relate to. I am off to read the RT article and see the CrossTalk discussion soon.

Posted by: Norwegian | Mar 23 2021 18:48 utc | 212

Paco @212--

Thanks so very much for the link!! I found these prepared words by Lavrov in his introductory remarks prior to his meeting with Yi I linked to above frame the issue well:

"As you have noted, the global situation is not becoming any simpler. It is increasingly characterised by the attempts of our Western colleagues to ensure their domination, by hook or by crook, disregarding the objective pace of history that facilitates the establishment of a multipolar international order. We need to mobilise our supporters while defending justice and the principles of the UN Charter which, as I have repeatedly said, are being increasingly ignored by Western colleagues. They are trying to invent their own rules and to impose them on all others....

"On the whole, I completely share your desire to continue using cooperation between our foreign ministries to strengthen the positions of our countries on the international scene in full compliance with the principles of international law and the UN Charter. [My Emphasis]

Again, my impression is the Friends of the UN Charter will become the vehicle for Russia and China to advance their interests in defeating the Neoliberal attempt to destroy the UN Charter. I also see the closing points Peter Lavelle made in the Crosstalk I linked as vital--No attempted "autopsy" as to why so many voted for Trump and the related fact that the type of Extreme Liberalism being pushed on the US public and globally is more than opposed by 50%: It's so looney most don't even understand it aside from the fact that it attacks their values.

Posted by: karlof1 | Mar 23 2021 19:27 utc | 213

The joint declaration looks promising. Here's its preamble:

"The ongoing pandemic of coronavirus infection has served as a catalyst for changes in the world order and has further unbalanced the system of global governance. Economic development processes have come under attack, and many new challenges and threats are emerging. The world has entered a period of high turbulence and rapid change. In these circumstances, we call on the international community to put aside its differences, to strengthen mutual understanding and to increase cooperation in the interests of universal security and geopolitical stability, to promote a more just, democratic and rational multipolar world order." [My Emphasis]

That's a very reasonable request that will be rejected by the Neoliberals and embraced by all other nations. The document is surprisingly short at just 4 main points. And since most don't have a good machine translator, I post the remainder of the document below without its imbedded links:

1. All human rights are universal, indivisiced and interconnected. Sustainable development is the basis for improving the standard of living and well-being of the people of each State, and thus contributes to the enjoyment of all human rights. The development and enjoyment of human rights and fundamental freedoms are interdependent. States should, on this foundation, protect and implement human rights in the political and socio-economic spheres, in the fields of culture and ecology, promote the full development of the individual and enhance the well-being of their peoples. Promoting and protecting human rights is also a common task of the international community, and its members should pay equal attention to ensuring that all categories of human rights are systematically enforced. The topic of human rights protection, its use as a pretext for interfering in the internal affairs of other States and the application of a policy of double standards should be abandoned, based on the principles of equality and mutual respect to engage in dialogue in this area for the benefit of the peoples of all countries.

2. One of the achievements of mankind is democracy, the sign of which is a legally enshrined democracy, that is, the possibility of citizens participating in the governance of their own country, as well as the application of the received power for legitimate purposes. At the same time, there is no single standard of a democratic model. The legitimate rights of sovereign States must be respected on their own. Interference in the internal affairs of sovereign States under the pretext of "promoting democracy" is unacceptable.

3. International law is an important condition for human development. Without exception, all States should make efforts to ensure that the system of international relations, in which the United Nationsplays a central role, and the world order, which is formed in accordance with international law, are in place. We reaffirm the commitment of the Declaration of the People's Republic of China and the Russian Federation to enhance the role of international law in 2016 and reiterate the key importance of the UN Charter,its goals and principles, which play an important role in maintaining international peace and security, as well as the development of international law. Approaches to global issues must be developed jointly by the entire international community on the basis of universally accepted norms and principles of international law and implemented by all parties. We call on the world powers, especially the permanent members of the UN Security Council,to strengthen mutual trust and to be at the forefront of the defenders of international law and the world order based on it. In the context of increasing global political turbulence, the convening of a summit of the permanent members of the UN Security Council is particularly in demand in order to establish a direct dialogue between them on ways to solve the common problems of mankind in order to maintain global stability.

4. In promoting multilateral cooperation, the international community must adhere to principles such as openness, equality and deideologization, respond together to global challenges and threats, work together to assert the authority of multilateral structures and improve their performance, promote the optimization of global governance, jointly protect peace and strategic stability, promote the development of human civilization and gain equitable access to its benefits. At the same time, the main instrument for international affairs should be a dialogue aimed at uniting all the countries of the world, not at dividing them, on cooperation, not confrontation.

It ought to be easy to see where the Outlaw US Empire and its minions will protest, particularly:

"The development and enjoyment of human rights and fundamental freedoms are interdependent. States should, on this foundation, protect and implement human rights in the political and socio-economic spheres, in the fields of culture and ecology, promote the full development of the individual and enhance the well-being of their peoples."

All of that goes against the core aims of Neoliberalism and of the proposed Great Reset.

Posted by: karlof1 | Mar 23 2021 19:45 utc | 214

@ karlof1 | Mar 23 2021 19:45 utc | 215 with the ongoing provision of links and quotes from the Axis of Good...thanks

My observation is that they aren't talking yet about money and the financial system. I would ask your historian self to tell us if there was public talk leading up to the Bretton Woods Agreement meeting? There is lots of talk about alternatives to this or that part but not yet the BIS which was suppose to go away as part of the Bretton Woods Agreement but they are still around manipulating foreign exchange for private purposes.

A question that comes to my mind is whether we will have a military event precipitated economic crash or will the crash happen outside the military posturing.....I am hoping for the latter but we may have to have that moment of military loss to precipitate the financial collapse of empire.

Posted by: psychohistorian | Mar 23 2021 19:58 utc | 215

karlof1 | Mar 23 2021 19:45 utc | 215

Thank you very much for closely following these events and keep us updated. Really appreciate your tireless efforts.

@lulu on this thread,
Thank you for your comments. Hopefully, they help clean out some misinformation and misunderstanding out there.

Posted by: LuRenJia | Mar 23 2021 20:00 utc | 216

My last days in the village: the battle never ends.

A cadre who's been working in a small village in Xinjiang for poverty alleviation over last 4 years, is leaving for Urumqi after he finished his job.

To be honest, I don't think I could do this by leaving family and big city behind to work in a remote and poor village for four years. Respect!

250,000 people moved away from inhabitable places to new houses with new developing projects sponsored by the government. This is one of the biggest eco resettlement project in Hong Shi Bao, Ning Xia Hui Muslim Autonomous Region(宁夏吴忠市红寺堡区).

Since 2000年,the lives of 230,000 people who resettled from Xi Hai Gu (西海固地区),where there were barely any water resources for people to scrap a life, have dramatically changed. Apart from free new houses, government has built water supply system and helped the peasants plant 100,000 grape trees, 56,000 mu (ca 3,733 hectares) for goji berry (high priced produce for domestic consumption and export), 70,000 mu (ca 4,667 hectares) day lily (cash crop), and raise 130,000 cattle as well as 960,000 sheep.

Retired Belgian become the assistant to the village secretary in Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region

Look, just how much and how hard to achieve the alleviation of the absolute poverty, and how much still need to be done!

I hope the doubters here can get some ideas how and what CPC has done to help the poorest and pulled 700 million Chinese from poverty. Maybe it can be inspirational to solve the poverty and homeless problems in your countries?

Posted by: lulu | Mar 23 2021 20:11 utc | 217

karof1 @215:

Always appreciate the links and updates you put out here! Wish I'd be so optimistic as you are!

psychohistorian @216:

Recently I am listening to a series of talks given by a Chinese professor Wen Tiejun, who mentioned Samir Amin's Delinking theory, which makes me suddenly understand better what you keep on talking about: private vs public controlled financial issues. Professor Wen talks about a new development theory/direction: Eco Civilisation. Very fascinating and eye opening for me.

Norwegian @209:

Thank you for your kind reply! May I ask what your culture is and why your society is "now under attack"?

I share your feeling about the insanity and alienating behavour from today's politicians and neoliberals. How could human being degenerates into such a status?

Posted by: lulu | Mar 23 2021 20:41 utc | 218

karlof1@214 appears not to be aware that a key principle of the UN charter is that some nations are more important than others, especially the permanent members of the Security Council. It also holds that mere national sovereignties are not so important, as demonstrated by the very limited roles assigned to the General Assembly. And as I recall, the UN charter holds that the UN can form its own military force to suppress aggressors? This one has never been acted on, obviously. So the question asks itself almost, does karlof1 mean the words of the charter or as imagined today. The UN arose as a victors' coalition after WWII. The USSR joining then was a diplomatic effort to make a joint peace on principles of international law too. The subsequent crusade against Communism killed millions and cost hundreds of billions, so the UN charter in practice means crusades against Communism can continue. It is also highly unclear if anybody knows much about what the principles of international law actually are.

The verbiage about extreme liberalism being forced on the world has no clear meaning, but it does sound suspiciously like a whine about sexual depravity flooding the pure cultures or some such nonsense. I can only say the same religious bigotry that inspires so many Trumpers is the same religious bigotry that enjoyed colonizing brown people and of course, mercilessly bombing and besieging Communist countries. And the same religious bigotry inspires a clash of civilzations, Christendom versus Islam, justifying every drop of blood spilt. Taking umbrage over the corruption of morals while approving the slaughter of millions---as if that wasn't the greatest corruption of morals of all!---seems like an ugly ideal to me. I hope that's not what karlof1 meant. (I know karlof1 is one of the leading commenters but I'm not nearly as good at keeping track as I should be.)

Posted by: steven t johnson | Mar 23 2021 20:48 utc | 219

vk | Mar 21 2021 18:44 utc | 31

I understand the Post-war Miracle happened and that it was magical for the people who lived through it, but it's over, it's never coming back and you live in a capitalist world. It's important for the European people realize that quickly, because capitalism is going to suffer more structural crises in the near future, maybe even ending up with the destruction of the EU itself (keep your eyes on Italy!).

The "Post-war Miracle" happened because at the end of the war the prestige of the USSR was very high and the ptb in the western powers, felt that in order to prevent revolutions in western countries, it was necessary to compete with the social provisions of the USSR.

I cannot, unfortunately, foretell the future, but it occurs to me that a few years down the road, barring catastrophies, the Western powers' ruling class might, possibly, find it necessary to compete with the working conditions in China for the same reason.

Posted by: foolisholdman | Mar 23 2021 21:06 utc | 220

chairman of the Xinjiang region and deputy party chief is in fact a Uyghur? He's called Shohrat Zakir.

US put a sanction on Arken Imirbaki, an Uyghur who is Vice Chairman of the National People's Congress

66 years ago, Xinjiang farmer Kurban Tulum's wish was to ride a donkey to Beijing. Today, his great-granddaughter flew to the capital to attend the annual meeting of the National People's Congress (NPC).

(PS. Kurban Tulum was super popular and well known among people 40+ in China.)

Born and raised in Xinjiang girl Ma Neng Neng has something to say: My family is a united of ethnicities - maternal grandma is Kazahk, paternal grandma: Persian/Tajik, both grandpas: Hui Muslim, father: Han . The belief my family has taught me is you must have belief! The belief is tolerance, acceptance and all ethnicities unite together like pomegranate.

Does the Western care any more about the facts? Or, the Western and neoliberials deem these Uyghurs as "bad Uyghurs" not suitable to report to fit in their narratives?

Facts are so much more boring than those sensational "concentration camp" stories. Facts does not guarantee your career advancement nor the sales of billions of weapons.

Posted by: lulu | Mar 23 2021 21:14 utc | 221

karlof1@215 kindly posts four guiding principles of the joint call. It is a peculiar call, as a multipolar world order is one in which the powerful nations make war on the weaker nations, which is neither rational nor democratic. Democracy is the union of classes within a nation on a basis of formal equality, that strengthens them against the foreign enemy. States are not equal in the sense people are equal to each other and a world order that guarantees formal equality to all nations is already with us. As in democracy, the fact is that although every state is equal in theory, in practice some are superior and others are inferior, that some are oppressors and others are oppressed. The thing about calling for the ideals already to be professed to be upheld is a call for moral reformation. But, states don't have souls to reform. They don't even have individual minds.

As to the four principles themselves, I would have written:
1)The welfare of the people is the supreme law, as has been acknowledged for centuries. Their physical welfare, their ability to live are the first duties. Governments are arrangements to fulfill that law. The people are the ones to decide whether their current government has fulfilled its commitments to the welfare of the people. It is not just for any single state to use legal verbiage, double standards, formal standards meant as instruments in attaining the goal but not the goals themselves, and a multitude of other subterfuges to justify hostilities overt and covert against another state.

2)In particular, peace is the greatest prerequisite for human welfare. As said before, crimes against peace are the origin of war crimes and crimes against humanity. Thus, it is incomprehensible that warfare by another state can be expected to resolve any problems faced by the people of any state. Economic sieges levied against the people of a country are by definition an effort to harm them.

3)The increasing interdependence of national economies cannot be reversed without causing economic suffering, in some countries more than others. But equally, continued development must be in accordance with the laws of nature, that is, must be sustainable. International cooperation requires a long term perspective for humanity to consciously take charge of humanity's intercourse with nature. Humanity is part of nature. Human freedom, like all freedom, must obey the laws of nature to make genuine choices.

4)Thus in the long run, the advancement of humanity requires that the defense of private property in the means of production must be subordinated to the common goals of humanity. People work to live, they do not live to work for the owners of capital. The determination the purpose of states is to unite the classes in warfare against other states must be abjured.

But that's just my take.

Posted by: steven t johnson | Mar 23 2021 21:15 utc | 222

@lulu | Mar 23 2021 20:41 utc | 219

I am simply an average native Norwegian with a family of lawyers and engineers. A grand uncle of mine was imprisoned by the German nazis during WWII occupation. I grew up first under relatively humble conditions and later more affluent, but then under the same roof as a psychopath. I would not wish that upon anyone, I can recognize such people now. Happily married to an asian woman for 30 years so far. I love other cultures and and my own culture with heritage from the Vikings and their discovery of America 1000 years ago. 2 years ago I went to see Angkor Wat in Cambodia, that is the most amazing place I will ever see in my life.

When I say my culture is under attack it does not mean I have anything against foregners, I have chinese, brazilian and peruvian colleagues that I work with every day and respect. But our politics have been thoroughly corrupted, just look at the head of NATO, Jens Stoltenberg. The so called "green" policy is built on lies and is designed to extract the riches in our country and this leads to destruction of the culture, i.e. respect for history, tradition and general decency. If you abandon truth, degeneracy follows.

How could human being degenerates into such a status?

I have a very hard time understanding it. It happened in Germany in the 1930's and it seems to happen again now all over the "west". It seems to me there are psychopaths with deep understanding of how to manipulate human psyche ...

“In individuals, insanity is rare; but in groups, parties, nations and epochs, it is the rule.” ― Friedrich Nietzsche

Posted by: Norwegian | Mar 23 2021 21:17 utc | 223

foolisholdman@222 is incorrect, the so-called "Trentes Glorieuses" happened because the destruction of capital in WWII was so great that it helped restore profitability of capital for a considerable period, while the decolonization of the empires and later the stabilizing influence of the socialist part of world economy moderated the inevitable business cycle for a relatively brief period. It was after all not even a single human lifetime. It is true that the example of the Soviet Union and others were likely of key importance to prompting the US to do away with Jim Crow. Of course since the US is still firmly committed to a class society, it was inevitable that abolishing white privileges did not abolish classes...and therefore most black people would still be working class and only a few would become petty bourgeois and even fewer haute bourgeois.

lulu@210 may not be a native speaker of English, but mindlessly copying an idiot's typographical error suggests the problem is dishonesty. (There is no Steven J. Johnson commenting here. Bots of course cannot be expected to correct typos, can they?) "People like Steven J. Johnson, and Neoliberals in the Western, are actually not interested in the well being of these poor Chinese. They are so entrenched in the ideology and racial hubris that they could not see any humanity in another political system (CPC) and another foreign society (China), which are so different from the Western Capitalist Orthodoxy." It's hard to tell if lulu ever read a single word I've ever written, but it is impossible to see how an honest reader can think I comment from a neoliberal perspective. I criticize Xi for moving away from socialist planning in favor of capital markets! That's the opposite of neoliberalism. lulu can't tell black from white. As for racial hubris, it's true that I'm not particularly woke. Being anti-fascist, including the glossy fake "I-respect-all-cultures-in-their own-lands-because-there-are-many-roads-to-spiritual-truth-I-just-want-to-defend-my-own" crap put out by the likes of Norwegian and too many others to bring to mind easily, being against that crap isn't woke! Trying to impute a racist motive, then assume the pretense refutes arguments, facts, history, reality, yeah, well, maybe that kind of thing is "woke." But it's lulu pulling that dirty trick.

People who criticized Gorbachev for trashing the socialist system were accused of not caring about the poor Russians (the others usually didn't count for that kind of critics.) But when Yeltsin came to finish what Gorbachev started, we saw who really cared about the poor Russians!(Yes, I was criticized and yes, I drew the lesson that I was right and I shouldn't respect the same failed arguments made then. Staleness doesn't make them more convincing.) When the choice between finishing the journey on the capitalist road comes (and it's getting closer,) if the wrong choice is made, the restoration of capitalism I think will far more savage in China than in Russia, as China is both more advanced in some places now, but less advanced in more. Like a sharp temperature difference in weather, this I think will make the storm much worse. So, who is it that doesn't care if the poor people of China have a future? It is lulu who doesn't care, who just wants a chorus of adulation for now. I don't think gushing is true love.

Posted by: steven t johnson | Mar 23 2021 21:39 utc | 225

“In individuals, insanity is rare; but in groups, parties, nations and epochs, it is the rule.” ― Friedrich Nietzsche

Posted by: Norwegian | Mar 23 2021 21:17 utc | 224
How true what Nietzsche said! Thank you for your detailed reply!

When I asked you why your "culture is under attack", I want to know how and why the Western, left and right, fell for this kind group (wrong) thinking? Where has the European critical and rational thinking gone? What has made it gone?

I am listening to what karlof1 posted: CrossTalk Bullhorns, Home Edition: Reset for whom? Maybe it answers some of our questions regarding the current situation in Western.

TOTALLY share your disdain of Jens Stoltenberg! A thoroughly corrupted war monger!

Posted by: lulu | Mar 23 2021 21:48 utc | 226

Mao Cheng Ji | Mar 21 2021 23:01 utc

Personally, I don't know if for any particular individual it's better to work in a factory all day and buy their food, or to grow their own food. It depends.

Well, working on your own and for yourself and your family, it may be better, while the sun shines and the rain falls at the right times, but if you fall ill, or the locusts come or a volcano covers your farm in ash or the path you need to get to the next town gets washed away; you may be glad of a state run health insurance, or state paid road menders, or food to tide you over the locust invasion or....or... and if you could but don't contribute why should you benefit from it?

If you are a subsistence farmer, you cannot benefit from all the opportunities that the development of China is opening up to people, as many of them (e.g. foreign travel) need to be paid for.

Posted by: foolisholdman | Mar 23 2021 21:52 utc | 227

lulu @218--

I hope the doubters here can get some ideas how and what CPC has done to help the poorest and pulled 700 million Chinese from poverty. Maybe it can be inspirational to solve the poverty and homeless problems in your countries?

I too share your hope, but anti-Communist indoctrination and related propaganda remains very difficult to overcome even when the results can no longer be refuted as many just refuse to believe, my wife being one who until very recently could best be described as a skeptic. Far too many people despite lots of contrary evidence that they're being lied to still believe the Establishment Narrative.


psychohistorian @216--

The "Origins" segment of Wikipedia's article on Bretton Woods is pretty good as a sketch. It was attended by 720 representatives from all 42 Allied nations. This bit answers one of your questions:

"As the war drew to a close, the Bretton Woods conference was the culmination of some two and a half years of planning for postwar reconstruction by the Treasuries of the U.S. and the UK. U.S. representatives studied with their British counterparts the reconstitution of what had been lacking between the two world wars: a system of international payments that would let nations trade without fear of sudden currency depreciation or wild exchange rate fluctuations—ailments that had nearly paralyzed world capitalism during the Great Depression."

Bernanke's excerpt ought to be excised, so ignore it. Lots of discussion about the Bretton Woods Meeting and the System that was born there has occurred. Hudson for example has written at length, here for example, about the dependencies purposefully created by the Bretton Woods institutions that chained developing nations to dollar hegemony as have many other writers. Some excellent books exist detailing the conference itself that provide some illuminations. And much speculation as to how a new international financial system might be organized also exists.

As for a military event precipitating an economic crash, such is surely possible depending on the severity; but given the great disequilibrium within the USA's financial system, I don't see the need for a war to cause its collapse. In some ways, it's already in semi-collapse, although the continual lies about the economy's performance serve to mask that somewhat. But the lies also fool those running the shop.

Since the Neoliberalism that was born at Bretton Woods is overseen by virulently Anti-Human technocrats favoring Davos's Great Reset, I wouldn't want any of them to design the new system. Any new system must serve the needs of humans and society first and foremost while including inbuilt protections against financial parasites and their institutions so they never again attain the degree of control they do today.

Posted by: karlof1 | Mar 23 2021 22:05 utc | 228

Scotland's Dirty War

Remember this from two days ago:

So let me add it all up:

For the Iraq Invasion it was Alastair Campbell who was the prime mover. For the Salmond assassination it is Liz Lloyd who is the prime mover. Here is some of her involvement. In January or February 2018 she was involved in the coralling of fresh meat into the Scot Gov complaints "procedure". In March 2018 she lured Alex Salmond back into the web using Geoff Aberdein. On April 2 2018 she sprung the trap and sought, with Nicola Sturgeon, to blackmail Alex Salmond. Salmond launched a judicial review. That is, he called their bluff. They sought to carry out their blackmail threat by publishing their doodles and fantasies on the Scottish Government website. Salmond sought an Interdict (injunction) to prevent such publication. So Liz Lloyd leaked the report to her former lover at the Daily Record, who published and destroyed the good name of Alex Salmond. When Salmond continued to resist, and was about to win the judicial review, Liz Lloyd recruited and suborned five other women to make claims for the criminal trial of Alex Salmond. Then Ms Lloyd made an accusation herself, became an alpha Betty, and was rewarded with lifetime anonimity (she is Ms A in the criminal pleadings).
So I say again, and even more strongly:

Now here is the kicker.

Liz Lloyd has not appeared before the Fabiani committee!

Now it just might be that SOMEBODY is protecting Ms Lloyd.
I know who is that somebody. But I don't want to upset people by naming her.

Well I've just seen this:

Michael says:
22 March, 2021 at 7:10 pm
Who ever heard of a report being sent to the accused for redaction before publication.

From Hamiltons accompanying letter:

In particular, I have been advised by my own independent legal adviser that nothing may be published which could identify certain particular individuals, some of whom had a significant role in certain events. A redacted report that effectively erases the role of any such individual in the matters investigated in the report cannot be properly understood by those reading it, and presents an incomplete and even at times misleading version of what happened. In earlier drafts of the report I attempted to anonymise certain individuals in such cases but these attempts were not successful.

It is therefore impossible to give an accurate description of some of the relevant events dealt with in the report while at the same time complying with the court orders.

I am deeply frustrated that applicable court orders will have the effect of preventing the full publication of a report which fulfils my remit and which I believe it would be in the public interest to publish.

So it's clearly not just me!

Posted by: John Cleary | Mar 23 2021 22:24 utc | 229

@lulu | Mar 23 2021 21:48 utc | 227

When I asked you why your "culture is under attack", I want to know how and why the Western, left and right, fell for this kind group (wrong) thinking? Where has the European critical and rational thinking gone? What has made it gone?

I wish I knew the answer, but I do not. It has not happened overnight, from my own experience it has been happening for at least 20+ years and getting steadily worse. There are lots of things that I do not know, but personally I have taken part in the "climate debate" for many years and seen the total destruction of scientific thinking. Maybe it is due to deteriorating economy which leads to scientists and charlatans being easily co-opted by powerful interests. We have seen our media go straight to hell because nobody buys newspapers anymore and then "journalism" goes out the window and is replaced by ever more incessant propaganda towards a population that has been taught we live in some kind of idyllic democracy (in fact it is a hypocracy more than democracy). The naïveté is extreme, few have any concept of critical thinking. But the fact that the propaganda is incessant (i experienced today at work even) means there are no coincidences. There is a color revolution thing going on, but why there is so little understanding and resistance is beyond my comprehension.

My thinking 15 years ago was that I would just have to ride out the insane climate babble and wait until society regained its sanity. But now we have the same process starting over again only exponentially worse: "Covid". This pathological science idea with zero scientific basis or real empirical evidence is used to crush the remains of our society. For over 5 months now I have been barred from going to work (before that I went to work alone, almost nobody else was there), and I was just told it would continue until mid April. Problem is, they said exactly the same thing 1 year ago. The reality is they want this to be permanent, and it is going to lead to the destruction of our society. It is an existential threat.

The central question is the one you ask: Where has the European critical and rational thinking gone? I don't know. There is clearly an attack on truth going on. For example, online you find a lot of silly stuff about the "fake Moon landing" and similar tings. There is a deliberate misinformation campaign going on, designed to disable people from understanding what is real and what is fantasy. That makes them vulnerable to manipulation and you can make them believe anything (covid). You can for example order people not to talk to each other directly ("stay 6 feet apart") but talk only via "smart" phone or PC. Then censor the internet so that alternative views become very difficult to spread. Then you end up in the situation we have now.

Posted by: Norwegian | Mar 23 2021 22:27 utc | 230

@lulu | Mar 23 2021 21:48 utc | 227
It is getting late, I will listen to that CrossTalk with Diesen in the morning...

Posted by: Norwegian | Mar 23 2021 22:28 utc | 231

Scotland's Dirty Way

Remember this?

She annoints her accolytes, arms them with special powers, and sends them forth to do their evil. They are ghosts, leaving no fingerprints.

Afterwards, when looking back, it seems they never existed at all. Honest civil servants are left scrambling trying to explain what happened, and why though they look guilty, it is not their fault.

Meanwhile Queen Elizabeth, in the words of Karl Rove, moves on to create another nightmare reality for us to study - judiciously.

Now have another look at what Hamilton says above.

It's fucking obvious he's talking about Liz Lloyd.

It's obvious he can see that "it seems they never existed at all".




Posted by: John Cleary | Mar 23 2021 22:51 utc | 232

Sorry. Way = War

Posted by: John Cleary | Mar 23 2021 22:52 utc | 233

l remember the first time George Bush senior uttered the words "New World Order".
That didn't pan out to anything.
Now we hear more and more "The International Rules Based Order", which appears to mean heads we win, tails you lose.
And now this "Great Reset" nonsense.

With any luck the "great Reset" will be what Karlofi posted at 215, much to the chagrin of the mob.

Posted by: arby | Mar 23 2021 22:55 utc | 234

I put some suet in a box out in the yard today and fed the cat, so I've fed all my local non-humans today. Here are a few important points made by Lavrov in the presser with Li:

"We share the opinion that Russian-Chinese foreign policy interaction remains a vital factor in global affairs. We pointed out the destructive character of US aspiration to undermine the UN-centric international legal framework by using the military-political alliances of the Cold War period and creating similar closed alliances. We noted the growing importance of the joint activities of Russia, China and a wide range of other countries to preserve the current system of international law in the context of the increasing Western attempts to promote its concept of a rules-based international order."

psychohistorian and others will appreciate this Q & A:

"Question: How does Russia plan on moving away from using international payment systems controlled by the West? Are there any specific agreements with China to create a common system as opposed to the Western ones? What can it be based on? Russia’s Mir card or China’s UnionPay system?

"Sergey Lavrov: This work has been underway for quite a long time now in different areas. We have our own financial messaging system. The respective financial departments of Russia and China plan to expand its use.

"For many years now we have been trying to transfer trade to settlements in national currencies. There’s a corresponding mechanism which is quite effective. We are switching to the national currency in our trade with other major partners.

"This is the imperative of our time. The people behind the global monetary system suddenly decided they were unhappy with the way other countries, in particular China, are using this system. China is beating the West at its own game. Hence, the reaction of the United States. Wang Yi covered this in detail. You cannot do global business by means of ultimatums and sanctions, or force other countries to behave as expected of them. We have a proverb: You can't force your love on another person. Unfortunately, the United States has not learned this and is acting from the opposite position.

"I’m convinced that Russia and China will do their best to ensure their safety and protection against the threats coming from the states that are unfriendly towards our respective countries. This also applies to ways of conducting trade, mutual settlements and everything else that makes us stronger." [My Emphasis]

And the last Q & A deals with the issue of illegal sanctions that also provided the context for Lavrov's comments about the ill state of relations with the EU which include why--a situation that might soon be extended to include the Outlaw US Empire:

"Question: China and Russia are under sanctions pressure from the United States and the EU. Do our countries plan to share their experience of confronting this pressure? How justified is the opinion that both countries’ tense relations with the Western powers make them move ever closer to one another?

"Sergey Lavrov: We have covered Russia and China’s reaction to sanctions and the illegitimate unilateral restrictions already today. We share the understanding that these methods are unacceptable in international life. We have more than once stated our position on this score, including in the Joint Statement. I’m convinced that this approach will be reiterated in a clear and unambiguous manner in the document on the occasion of the 20th anniversary of the Treaty on Good-Neighbourliness and Friendly Cooperation between Russia and China that our leaders will approve.

"In addition to our principled approaches that are set forth in public documents, we closely cooperate with many countries at the UN in order to counter these practices. As you are aware, the UN has a Special Rapporteur on unilateral coercive measures. This is already a fairly serious practical move to clarify the unacceptability of this policy. The United States, Europe and the West in general are, in fact, replacing diplomacy, the art which they are losing, with the steps seeking to impose their own rules on everyone else. In their opinion, these rules rather than international law must underlie the international order. Sanctions are among these rules.

"Russia and China do not ally against anyone. Geographically, our country is located on the vast Eurasian continent. China is our good neighbour, as is the EU. We have always been interested in promoting our relations across all areas. Europe has severed these relations and destroyed the mechanisms that have been created over many years. There are only a few European partner countries that have a desire to act based on their national interests.

"Objectively, this led to cooperation between Russia and China developing faster than what is left of relations with the European countries. Importantly, there are no relations with the EU as an organisation. The infrastructure was destroyed by unilateral decisions made by Brussels. If and when the Europeans decide to eliminate this anomaly in contacts with their largest neighbour, we will be ready to build up relations between us on the basis of equality and a search for a balance of interests. But so far, all has been quiet on the Western front, whereas the East offers a very intense agenda, which is getting more varied every single year." [My Emphasis]

Putin and Xi are the primary leaders of the global effort to reform the UN along more democratic lines, which specifically addresses the unique situation of the UNSC. The main reason the Outlaw US Empire hasn't been disciplined for its many illegal acts is its UNSC position. It's as if a serial killer was presiding as prosecutor, judge and jury at its own trial which allows it to absolve itself of the most heinous of crimes--Genocide of Southeast and Southwest Asians. While some think it better that the Outlaw US Empire remains in the UN when comparing its situation with that of Germany and the League of Nations, I don't see where it makes any difference since the main issue/question/concern is the enforcement of international law, particularly for the offenses committed by the Outlaw US Empire and the EU/NATO. Removing the dollar as the primary reserve commercial currency would make ignoring its sanctions simple and is a suitable punishment for its many criminal sanctions. But how to make it pay for the many illegal wars and other assaults made on nations and peoples globally since the crimes are very similar to those of Nazi Germany? It's supposedly a democratic nation, so what cost should its populace bear for the actions of those it elected? And those are just two of several very thorny questions that are made more difficult to answer since the Outlaw US Empire isn't yet a militarily defeated and occupied entity. Here's another: How to protect the world from those guilty leaders of the Empire wishing to avoid public execution or life in prison by committing suicide by nuclear weapons?

Revamping the International System isn't an easy task when a large and powerful bloc of outlaw nations don't want to conform to the norms they initially pledged themselves to uphold. But honest nations and their peoples can't allow themselves to be held hostage by a group of nuclear armed rogues so they must find some method to arrest the outlaws. And IMO, that's the #1 challenge facing humanity.

Posted by: karlof1 | Mar 23 2021 23:09 utc | 235

@221 foolisholdman

You said (and I agree):

The "Post-war Miracle" happened because at the end of the war the prestige of the USSR was very high and the ptb in the western powers, felt that in order to prevent revolutions in western countries, it was necessary to compete with the social provisions of the USSR.

I cannot, unfortunately, foretell the future, but it occurs to me that a few years down the road, barring catastrophies, the Western powers' ruling class might, possibly, find it necessary to compete with the working conditions in China for the same reason.

We've spoken here before about the Demonstration Effect, and I personally feel it has a large power. In fact, here we see it as actual history in your first paragraph, and we find no obvious reason to doubt the possibility of it happening again in the future as described in your second paragraph.

In plain terms, although we worry about the blanket propaganda and the information wars, in the end the demonstrated reality of one set of humans eventually sinks in on another set of humans who over time find it impossible to miss.

And I think that demonstration wipes all the propaganda out as the chimera it always has been. A cave can be dark for a million years, but the instant that a lamp is lit, light is everywhere, as if the darkness never was.

So there is great reason for hope.


They say, "be the change you want to see," but in the US it's easy to despair of the country ever being able to change itself. And, out of that despair, I have thought for some time now that we stand a better chance of seeing that somehow the changing world is what will change the US.

What if China - or the entire multipolar world - will be the change we want to see in the US?

Posted by: Grieved | Mar 23 2021 23:15 utc | 236

Grieved | Mar 22 2021 0:42 utc | 78

It's a wonderful article for what it says about life in the US mind and culture.

This is certainly a wonderful piece! It explains, as I have never seen explained before, how US politicians can lie so confidently and spout such utter balderdash with complete conviction.
I would also very strongly recommend reading the piece he give as reference No.15 to the above article.

Posted by: foolisholdman | Mar 23 2021 23:50 utc | 237

Paul | Mar 22 2021 4:23 utc | 86

Yes. (((They))) set up a channel which they called "Colibri" (which means "Hummingbird" in Spanish) "To enable free conversation among Cubans". However, the Cuban government saw them coming and closed it down.

Posted by: foolisholdman | Mar 24 2021 0:06 utc | 238

Here's a gem from the Global Times editorial I linked @201--

"There is no basis for China, Russia and many other developing countries to discuss human rights issues with the West, because what the West really cares about is not human rights, but the right to define human rights one-sidedly. This is an expression of hegemony in which only the Western countries can set the rules for the world. China and Russia will never allow the West to be this rude and insolent, nor will they succumb to the ambitions of the West." [My Emphasis]

This is one of the best editorials yet that describes the seemingly limitless double standards the West applies to all others. What's worse as China and Russia's leading statesmen observe is the 100% illegality of such double standards upon which illegal sanctions are based. The reasons why are the unmitigated lust for power and wealth gained at the expense of others.

Posted by: karlof1 | Mar 24 2021 0:43 utc | 239

Below is a Xinhuanet report on elections in Occupied Palestine

JERUSALEM, March 23 (Xinhua) -- Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's main rival, Yair Lapid, said Tuesday that he will try to form a government coalition amid another round of inconclusive election results.

Initial results of Israel's fourth election in less than two years suggested that right-wing parties won 59-60 seats in the 120-seat parliament, while centrist-left parties calling to replace Netanyahu won 60-61 seats.

"We will do anything possible to form a sane government," Lapid, leader of the centrist party Yesh Atid, told his supporters at the party headquarters in Tel Aviv. "As of now, Netanyahu is unable to form a government."

"At the moment, Netanyahu does not have 61 seats and the pro-change bloc has 61 seats," Lapid said, referring to a bloc of parties that attempt to replace Netanyahu, who faces a criminal trial over corruption charges.

Initial results suggested that Yesh Atid won about 18 seats while Netanyahu's right-wing Likud party won about 30 seats.

Earlier, Netanyahu claimed victory, suggesting he will attempt to form a government coalition with three ally parties: the ultra-Orthodox parties of Shas and United Torah Judaism, and a new far-right pro-settler party called the Religious Zionism. Initial results suggested they won altogether about 52 seats.

Netanyahu has expressed hope to join forces with Yamina, another pro-settler party, to reach the 61 seats needed to form a majority coalition.

Posted by: psychohistorian | Mar 24 2021 4:30 utc | 240

I hate to say it, but I will be surprised if Nuttyahoo loses government when the opposition has a majority of only 1 or 2 seats.
We have seen before how the child murderer uses intelligence contacts to blackmail, gangster contacts to scare plus 'business' contacts to bribe any knesset member he considers vulnerable to those angles, just as circumstances require him to.

Of course it should all be judged irrelevant given the fact that most of the Palestinians of Occupied Palestine are denied a vote in the administration which controls & taxes them.

I realise that this is a position that is difficult for amerikans who deny Puerto Rico and Micronesia as well as others a vote in their national elections but even so it is laughable that amerika & the eunuch's puppets sledge countries such as Belarus, Myanmar & Zimbabwe all of whose ballots (excepting maybe Myanmar where Aung Sung's government denied more than 30% of the population a vote & is the primary reason for its dismissal) are far more representative of all the people's wishes than Occupied Palestine has ever been.
Don't these ninnies realise that time is against them - fukUS has done such a grand job of propagandising that 100% adult suffrage is the only fair & just way, that their deceits cannot be hidden in a world where information flows so rapidly even when 'hindered'?

Posted by: Debsisdead | Mar 24 2021 5:54 utc | 241

@karlof1 | Mar 23 2021 23:09 utc | 236

Here's another: How to protect the world from those guilty leaders of the Empire wishing to avoid public execution or life in prison by committing suicide by nuclear weapons?

That is a relevant question. Less than 10km from where I am now, one of the occupying leaders of Nazi Germany committed suicide by dynamite in 1945. Luckily he did not have a nuclear weapon available to him.

Posted by: Norwegian | Mar 24 2021 6:02 utc | 242

Speaking of hindering information flows, Matt Taibbi's latest does a grand job of unravelling how the dem scumsuckers have thwarted the first amendment without overtly seeming to.

"When Columbia law professor Timothy Wu was appointed by Joe Biden to the National Economic Council a few weeks back, the press hailed it as great news for progressives. The author of The Curse of Bigness: Antitrust in the New Gilded Age is known as a staunch advocate of antitrust enforcement, and Biden’s choice of him, along with the appointment of Lina Khan to the Federal Trade Commission, was widely seen as a signal that the new administration was assembling what Wired called an “antitrust all-star team.” . . .snip . . .

. . . Wu’s appointment may presage tougher enforcement of tech firms. However, he has other passions that got less ink. Specifically, Wu — who introduced the concept of “net neutrality” and once explained it to Stephen Colbert on a roller coaster — is among the intellectual leaders of a growing movement in Democratic circles to scale back the First Amendment. He wrote an influential September, 2017 article called “Is the First Amendment Obsolete?” that argues traditional speech freedoms need to be rethought in the Internet/Trump era. . . ."

Maybe someone will get a case to the supremes about this eventually. By mid 2022 the 'apolitical' judges may be open to upsetting the citizens they believe hold a majority power.

Posted by: Debsisdead | Mar 24 2021 6:04 utc | 243

Norwegian | Mar 23 2021 21:17 utc | 224

How could human being degenerates into such a status?
I have a very hard time understanding it. It happened in Germany in the 1930's and it seems to happen again now all over the "west". It seems to me there are psychopaths with deep understanding of how to manipulate human psyche ...

I think if you go to the blog called: "" and scroll down to "Captain America - The Man with Two Brains", you will find a series of five articles explaining in horrific detail how it is done.

Basically, if you control all sources of information to the people of a country and have an understanding of psychology, you can get the mass of people to believe almost anything, including things that are obviously untrue. E.g. that Pompeo cares about Muslims in Xinjiang!

Posted by: foolisholdman | Mar 24 2021 10:31 utc | 244

Maybe if you listen to Biden long enough you might believe he is a good man. His actions tell us otherwise.

The Pan-American Health Organization (PAHO) and UNICEF-brokered agreement, which was announced by self-declared “interim president” Juan Guaidó last week, looks to liberate US $30.3 million in Venezuelan funds frozen by the US government in order to acquire vaccines through the United Nations COVAX program.

As part of its terms, Guaidó, who is still recognized by Washington as Venezuela’s leader, will request a special license from the US Treasury Department's Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) which oversees Washington’s sanctions regime. The deal was endorsed by the US’ envoy to Venezuela, James Story, who “congratulated both Maduro and Guaidó” last week from his base in Colombia. For its part, the Venezuelan government has yet to comment on the reported agreement, which has been confirmed by PAHO representatives.

Guaidó has been accused of blocking efforts against the pandemic in recent months, with his team fighting a UN-brokered deal to free up Venezuelan funds held in the UK for healthcare purchases since May 2020. He reportedly also turned down government overtures to order the release of frozen foreign assets placed under his control for vaccine purchases last January, drawing strong criticism.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Mar 24 2021 11:22 utc | 245


Amidst all the serious discussion, I hope you and the other barflies will forgive me a joke.

Once upon a time a boy was born to a couple called Jones. A few days later his father went with his clergyman to baptise the baby. On the way to the Church they dropped into a pub or three to toast the baby's future and when they arrived at the church, they were both "well oiled".

When the clergyman filed in the baptismal form, he could not be bothered to fill in the babies two Christian names in full but simply gave his names as "R.B."

The boy thus became known to his family and friends as "Arby".
When Arby reached the age of maturity, he received a letter from the inland revenue which said:

Dear Mr Jones,
Herewith your social security number. Unfortunately we do not seem to have a record of you full name but merely your initials. Please fill in the enclosed form and return it to us in the enclosed prepaid envelope.
Yours faithfully for HMRC"

Arby filled in the form; "R (only) B (only)" and returned it to HMRC as requested. Thereafter all letters to him from the government were addressed to "Mr Ronly Bonly Jones".

Posted by: foolisholdman | Mar 24 2021 11:33 utc | 246

Posted by: foolisholdman | Mar 24 2021 11:33 utc | 247

Posted by: arby | Mar 24 2021 12:53 utc | 247

@ lulu. and @ john cleary.. thank you both for all your posts.. i am traveling at the moment, but wanted to thank you for posting.

Posted by: james | Mar 24 2021 16:20 utc | 248

Oh say can you see
By the dawn's early light
What so proudly we raised
Till the twilight's last gleaming?
Whose bright petals and buds
Through the storm threatened night
On the branches so dry
Were beginning to open.
And the rain first, then snow
At the torchlight's dim glow
Gave proof to the land
that its heart can still sing;
Oh say does my garden
Rejoice in this moisture?
As the birds give thanks
As we all welcome spring.

Posted by: juliania | Mar 24 2021 16:42 utc | 249

steven t johnson @ 226, that's a good post! Thank you.

Posted by: juliania | Mar 24 2021 17:16 utc | 250

Correction to my 251 above,

steven t johnson @ 223 is the post I praise, not the second one. Four good principles broadly stated, ending with the following:

4)Thus in the long run, the advancement of humanity requires that the defense of private property in the means of production must be subordinated to the common goals of humanity. People work to live, they do not live to work for the owners of capital. The determination the purpose of states is to unite the classes in warfare against other states must be abjured.

Posted by: juliania | Mar 24 2021 17:21 utc | 251

schmoe | Mar 22 2021 13:19 utc | 103

My connection to the Global Times is back to normal.

Posted by: foolisholdman | Mar 24 2021 18:13 utc | 252

Mr. Iranian:

In 1923, many many countries were in a state that by the standards of today, would be considered to be Third World.

In the interior of the United States, conditions were quite bad as well.

But today, Iran is no longer a Third World country - it is a poor country - largely because of the Judeo-Christians religious war against enemies of their religious project in Palestine.

You have not been to Pakistan, if you had, you would have noticed how poverty, squalor, wretchedness immediately overwhelms one when one crosses the border.

The Usuli mullahs - in contradistinction to Akhbari mullahs - have been waging a war against superstitions for a hundred years.

But be advised that without Shia Islam, there could have been no Iran - the new Iran which has been Turkic since the time of the late great Alp Arsalan.

Posted by: fyi | Mar 26 2021 14:25 utc | 253

Mr. foolisholdman

For myself, I would state that aspects of human material and non-material culture are major considerations of the designation of "Third World".

The concept of the Third World, was initially encompassing purely economic factors.

I think that be inadequate: one may have designated Korea in 1955 to have been a Third World country due to the Korean War. I would have considered Korea to be be - at the time - a temporary poor country due to war - just like Japan in 1945. My consideration is due to my appreciation of the culture of Korea (or Japan) in this case.

Pakistan, on the other hand, has been a Third World country since her inception - just like Bolivia or Honduras or Somali. It is not just about the money, it is much more than that - in my opinion.

Posted by: fyi | Mar 26 2021 14:38 utc | 254

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