Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
July 15, 2021

Steele Dossier Peddlers Confirm Its Substance With New Forgeries


Today the Guardian published another fake 'Russiagate' story:

Kremlin papers appear to show Putin’s plot to put Trump in White House

Vladimir Putin personally authorised a secret spy agency operation to support a “mentally unstable” Donald Trump in the 2016 US presidential election during a closed session of Russia’s national security council, according to what are assessed to be leaked Kremlin documents.
Western intelligence agencies are understood to have been aware of the documents for some months and to have carefully examined them. The papers, seen by the Guardian, seem to represent a serious and highly unusual leak from within the Kremlin.

Yaawwwnn ...

We know, without reading it, that the story is fake because its main author is Luke Harding. Harding also authored the story which claimed that Trump's former campaign manager Paul Manaford met Julian Assange in the Ecuadorian embassy in London. That story was proven to be false but the Guardian, to its shame, still has it up on its website.

In 2017 Luke Harding abruptly ended an interview with Aaron Maté after Harding was challenged over false claims he had made in his book about 'Russiagate'. The last five minutes of that video are quite amusing.

The Guardian story claims that the 'leaked' nonsense paper was discussed in high level Kremlin meeting in January 2016. It was then decided, it alleges, to support Trump. But in January 2016 there was no one, not even Donald Trump himself, who thought that he would win the Republican primary or even the presidency. But the Kremlin is supposed to have discussed him at the highest level well before anyone thought he could win?

Various people make interesting remarks about the new Guardian fakery:

Tara McCormack @McCormack_Tara - 12:13 UTC · Jul 15, 2021

I am seriously coming to the conclusion that Luke Harding is a Russian operative who has been put in place as part of a long term dastardly plan to make British journalism appear ridiculous.

Craig Murray @CraigMurrayOrg - 12:02 UTC · 15 Jul 2021

The next Luke Harding MI6 hoax.
Passing off forged Kremlin minutes saying things like “It is acutely necessary to use all possible force to facilitate his [Trump’s] election to the post of US president."

Glenn Greenwald @ggreenwald - 12:07 UTC · 15 Jul 2021

The part of the media that feigns anger at misinformation is uncritically promoting a story today by Luke Harding that Russia was blackmailing Trump -- the same Harding who has published many false stories, championed the Steele Dossier and claimed Trump was long a Russian agent.
Now suddenly, Harding claims he obtained leaked, highly sensitive Kremlin documents that just so happen to prove all the lies he's been peddling for years, that not even Mueller's huge team found. Because it advances liberals' interests, journalists are uncritically spreading it.
I will once use this shabby behavior to against highlight 2 points:

1) The contempt and loss of trust people harbor for the corporate media is completely justified and well-earned.

2) These outlets are by far the most prolific and destructive disseminators of disinformation.

Even people who are typically inclined to promote all kinds of anti-Russian nonsense are cautious on this item.

Thomas Rid @RidT - 12:38 UTC · 15 Jul 2021

This Guardian story is likely to make big waves. I would remain somewhat cautious for now, however. For a "leak" of this magnitude, we need at least some details on the chain of custody. Also note the Guardian's own hedging ("papers appear to show")…

Pwn All The Things @pwnallthethings - 14:40 UTC · 15 Jul 2021

Also, just putting this out there, if the US had this and thought it was real, how likely is it that it would have survived the waterfall of leaks of the past few years? And yet, here we are, with this as exclusive by the UK's Guardian, and conspicuously not, say, WaPo or NYT.

Christopher Steele, the 'former' British intelligence officer who peddle the fake dossier about alleged Russian Trump kompromat on behalf of the Hillary Clinton campaign, worked and still works for Orbis Intelligence, a British private outlet run by 'former' British spies.

They are still at it ...

Orbis Business Intelligence @OrbisBIOfficial - 10:48 UTC · Jul 15, 2021

Great reporting on an important story.

Luke Harding @lukeharding1968 - 10:02 UTC · Jul 15, 2021

Exclusive: Leaked Putin papers appear to show #Russia’s plot to put a “mentally unstable” Donald Trump into the White House – my story with @julianborger in Washington and @dansabbagh in London
Kremlin papers appear to show Putin’s plot to put Trump in White House

"Great reporting.. " "..important story"

Yeah. Sure. Whatever.

Posted by b on July 15, 2021 at 15:20 UTC | Permalink


They embarass us all with this sort of stupidity. And being British, of course, they double down on it.

"REVEALED: Iran plotted to kidnap Iranian-American journalist from Brooklyn, transport her by speedboat to Venezuela and then fly her to the Islamic republic because she criticized regime, FBI say"

You just cannot get much more ludicrous than that.

Posted by: Bemildred | Jul 15 2021 15:31 utc | 1

And lots of projection too, we all know who lies and indulges in all sorts of chicanery to silence critics (like Assange, say).

Posted by: Bemildred | Jul 15 2021 15:33 utc | 2

damn you gottlieb! look what you started, lol...

thanks b... these intel agencies running the "free press" sure are getting boring really fast....

Posted by: james | Jul 15 2021 15:50 utc | 3

@ 1 bemildred.... i knew it was a lie when i heard it on the cbc radio yesterday... if the cbc is running with it - it is an outright made up lie... accept everything on the surface and never question anything!!! be a good citizen, lol...

Posted by: james | Jul 15 2021 15:52 utc | 4

The articles from The Guardian and all don't prove anything about Russia's plans. The cite the January 26 meeting of the Security Council as Proof of Putin's plans. If I were in Putin's place, I would also have been happy with Trump's election and its likely socioeconomic impact on the US society.

Posted by: Bigben | Jul 15 2021 16:00 utc | 5

Harding strikes me as someone who's completely into the business of selling stories. He senses where the money is , looks at his sales numbers and concludes he's doing great because that is how he measures things. No concept of 'truth' other than financial success in the market of ideas. I suspect he makes a lot of money.

Posted by: Tuyzentfloot | Jul 15 2021 16:12 utc | 6

damn, i wish i had it in me to be a cult leader...i'd make a beeline to the guardian office and have an army of kool-aid drinking simps at my disposal. when they aren't harrassing and firing women writers for calling out "female identifying" sex offenders in dresses or stirring up imaginary "anti-semitism" they're peddling this delusional nonsense and LARPing as MI6 spooks. truly in their own little world. i'll guess some LSD in the water cooler and a decent powerpoint presentation is all it would take to be the limey jim jones.

Posted by: the pair | Jul 15 2021 16:18 utc | 7

The chunks of the supposed document that the Guardian included with its article really give it away. The text - supposedly from an internal Kremlin communication - reads as no more or less than a chunk of English passed through Google Translate. Idiomatically, it is chock full of awkwardness and simple ridiculous phrasings. There are even grammatical errors! "..во время пребывания его..." is simply incorrect. In Russian, the last two words are reversed in order.

It recalls the recent Putin's Palace story, with the "комната грязи".

It's just shameful how little pride the propagandists take in their work. I understand that they hold their audience in only the lowest of regard (not without cause, to be fair), but it's not like there is any shortage of Russian-speakers in the west they could go to for proofreading, if not copy writing.

Posted by: ДжММ | Jul 15 2021 16:35 utc | 8

Kremlin's response came out:

Peskov called the article by The Guardian about the authorities of Russia and Trump a fiction

“Of course, this is such a continuation of absolutely low-quality publications. Either the newspaper is trying to somehow increase its popularity, or the newspaper continues such a frenzied Russophobic line. Of course, all this does not and cannot correspond to the truth. This, in fact, is not true ... This is a continuation of the exercises on total demonization of Russia and Putin, which The Guardian sometimes likes to do, or is it a desperate attempt to attract some new readers by publishing such tales, "Peskov said.

Posted by: vk | Jul 15 2021 16:55 utc | 9

"REVEALED: Iran plotted to kidnap Iranian-American journalist from Brooklyn, transport her by speedboat to Venezuela and then fly her to the Islamic republic because she criticized regime, FBI say", Bemildred | Jul 15 2021 15:31 utc | 1

I TOLD you all that the FBI needed new script writers. Either that or they have so little imagination that they have to use up all the scripts from a couple of years back, as they cannot afford new ones.


Don't underestimate stupidity

Posted by: Stonebird | Jul 15 2021 17:18 utc | 10

Luke 'Skywalker' Harding defeats the evil empire. Part 13.

Posted by: pnyx | Jul 15 2021 17:18 utc | 11

Doesn't matter - the MSNBC watchers will never accept this. I still try to punch through the armor of confirmation bias now and then. My last jab was: "I think Russiagate is every bit as much evidence-free bullshit as Quanon!". No effect whatsoever. Willing to agree with half of what I said - just like Fox watchers.

Unfortunately, I don't think my fellow citizens here in the heart of Pindostan will pay attention until things get bad enough that they know actual hunger - and then they will serve the elites by fighting each other.

Sorry for the pessimism, the one positive thing I do think I can do is tend my vegetable garden!

Posted by: Citizen621 | Jul 15 2021 17:58 utc | 12

Amerikan intel agrees it fake but they will walk it back soon I'm sure

Posted by: jo6pac | Jul 15 2021 18:07 utc | 13


"во время пребывания его", maybe awkward but semikosher, many examples can be found Googling it ---like during stay of his vs. during his stay (e.g. can be found to say: "связанных с действиями и поступками приглашаемого во время пребывания его в РФ, в том числе, в случае депортации").

Posted by: QA | Jul 15 2021 18:53 utc | 14

Jeez, it just gets worse-as soon as I saw the name Luke harding, I knew it was a pile of trash; really, who in the hell reads this without a sense to vomit.

Well, there there is Orbis: "great reporting."

MI6 and prob cia has this clown on the payroll; I tried to watch the last 5 minutes of the video but could not get past the first minute; the guy is absolutely repulsive and they continue to double down on this garbage.

Posted by: Thomas | Jul 15 2021 20:22 utc | 15

Headlines on Democratic Underground and Daily KOS:
“Explosive evidence that Putin supported a Trump Presidency”

Commenters: “I knew it!”

Posted by: Cadence calls | Jul 15 2021 20:28 utc | 16


I think you really nailed it; we see it every day, with this latest pail of s___, that these purveyors absolutely have no shame or embarrassment, but believe their audience, the sheeple, are complete idiots or stupid. The question is who is stupid as this level of stupidity cannot be fixed or underestimated.

Posted by: Thomas | Jul 15 2021 20:30 utc | 17

I remember the scene in the movie "The Big Short" where Steve Carell
was saying, "they knew all along!".

Goldman Sachs, et al, had over-leveraged the housing mortgages and "they knew all along"
if and when it all crumbled the government would cover Wall Street's bad bets with taxpayer debt.

They knew all along it was bs but they did it anyway.

The MSM is a different arena but has the same arrogant attitude towards average joe citizen.

The MSM knows it is selling bs but they don't care.

What I see is they are counting on the "Reiteration Effect" (look it up, it is a real thing).
"Russia bad", "Russia bad", "Russia bad", "Russia bad", "Russia bad", "Russia bad".

There have been a steady stream of "Russia bad" stories and "Russia helped Trump" stories, and over time
the fact that these stories are one by one debunked does not matter. The "Reiteration Effect" is what matters.
"Say something a million times and it becomes true" is not a mere cynical phrase, it actually works - the "Reiteration Effect".

Keep putting out these "Russia bad" stories and "Russia helped Trump" stories and over time people will accept the basic message as true.

The MSM has known all along they were selling bs, but they don't care.

Posted by: librul | Jul 15 2021 21:41 utc | 18

@ Posted by: librul | Jul 15 2021 21:41 utc | 18

They definitely didn't know 2008 would happen. On the contrary: they thought they had discovered the elixir of immortality for capitalism.

The USA was caught completely off-guard in September 2008. You have to search with a magnifying glass to find the ten people who predicted the crisis would happen in its nature and more or less its timing - but even then, most of them were Marxists, i.e. outside the commanding heights of the USG.

Posted by: vk | Jul 15 2021 22:11 utc | 19

@Posted by: vk | Jul 15 2021 22:11 utc | 19

Goldman Sachs began to short mortgage bonds and like instruments before the crash of 2008.

Regardless, they *knew* their bets were covered by the government.


Were you aware that Henry Paulson began to ready a coup in 2008?

Posted by: librul | Jul 15 2021 22:23 utc | 20

I like the idea of the makers of this thing deciding that it's a shoddy job which only Harding will take. Also Harding gets all the attention but let's not forget the honourable mentions in this story: Julian Borger and Dan Sabbagh.

Posted by: Tuyzentfloot | Jul 15 2021 22:41 utc | 21

@Posted by: librul | Jul 15 2021 22:23 utc | 20 ....continued

I saved this from somewhere (?) years ago. Doesn't matter, you can read Paulson's coup document for yourself.
The WSJ link still works but you hit a pay wall. You can put the following url at
and read the original WSJ publication and Paulson's coup document dated Sept 20, 2008 at the WSJ.

**** "shall not be subject to judicial review" ****

"Decisions by the Secretary pursuant to the authority of this Act are non-reviewable and committed to agency discretion, and may not be reviewed by any court of law or any administrative agency."

Did you catch that? Paulson went further. Not just the courts are cut out but "any adminstrative agency" as well.

Paulson also was giving to Himself the authority to APPROPRIATE any funds He wished.

"Any funds expended for actions authorized by this Act, including the payment of administrative expenses, shall be deemed appropriated at the time of such expenditure."

HE could pass ANY legislation He wanted to:

"(5) issuing such regulations and other guidance as may be necessary or appropriate to define terms or carry out the authorities of this Act."

The word "term" has a duel meaning. It also refers to TIME, as in length of a term.

Give powers to anyone and hire anyone He wished to:

"(1) appointing such employees as may be required to carry out the authorities in this Act and defining their duties;"

What miscellaneous authorities did G-d Paulson give Himself? Answer: Authority over the police and the military.

"In exercising the authorities granted in this Act, the Secretary shall take into consideration means for–

(1) providing stability or preventing disruption to the financial markets or banking system; and

"providing stability OR". That OR makes for confusion (intentional confusion). Stability is a word used often in the context of economics but it is also used in the context of police action. Get it? He wants to create his own SS. See the very next word: "protecting", as in "We Serve and Protect".

(2) protecting the taxpayer."

The last one is my favorite. Who is a *taxpayer*? Hmmm, is not everyone, even candy purchasing kids liable to pay tax? Corporations are also taxpayers...

G-d Paulson covered all his bases.

Even the one about being G-d Forever:

"Sec. 9. Termination of Authority.

The authorities under this Act, with the exception of authorities granted in sections 2(b)(5), 5 and 7, shall terminate two years from the date of enactment of this Act."

Paulson wants you to believe this terminates in two years. However, 2(b)(5) does NOT terminate and that one says he can just place the crown back on His own head:

"(5) issuing such regulations and other guidance as may be necessary or appropriate to define terms or carry out the authorities of this Act."


A coup! A massive scandal that has been totally missed.

Posted by: librul | Jul 15 2021 22:49 utc | 22

@Posted by: librul | Jul 15 2021 21:41 utc | 18

“If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it. The lie can be maintained only for such time as the State can shield the people from the political, economic and/or military consequences of the lie. It thus becomes vitally important for the State to use all of its powers to repress dissent, for the truth is the mortal enemy of the lie, and thus by extension, the truth is the greatest enemy of the State.”-- Joseph Goebbels (Luke Harding's Father?)

Posted by: Michael888 | Jul 15 2021 23:01 utc | 23

@ Cadence calls | Jul 15 2021 20:28 utc | 16:

We can take some comfort in the fact that Daily Kos readership has fallen precipitously over the last few years. Nobody takes it seriously anymore.

Posted by: corvo | Jul 15 2021 23:16 utc | 24

In 2017 Luke Harding abruptly ended an interview with Aaron Maté after Harding was challenged over false claims he had made in his book about 'Russiagate'. The last five minutes of that video are quite amusing.

I'm not normally a follower of this topic even though one of our sleazers, Downer, was involved but needing something to smile at while in our CV lockdown I watched the link.

What an understatement! It's a hilarious 28m:51s train wreck interview with a complete dick. Thanks b for sharing it.

Posted by: Dim sim | Jul 15 2021 23:31 utc | 25

@Vk, I'm sorry to contradict you but if you pick up a copy of the Financial Times in 2008 before the crash, everyone was predicting it. I checked recently, and sure enough, it was all over the paper.

Posted by: mismatch | Jul 15 2021 23:49 utc | 26

Luke Harding. Nuff said.

Posted by: TEP | Jul 16 2021 0:18 utc | 27

Once again super duper evil genius ex-KGB spy cannot keep state secrets secret.

Posted by: Erelis | Jul 16 2021 0:22 utc | 28

Painful video to watch. Harding is using the Hitler argument.

'My evidence that Trump colluded with Putin (Saddam has WMD) is that Putin is Hitler. If you don't believe me, you are supporting Adolf Hitler'.

Harding is Satan's minion, and Jesus said, 'Satan is a liar and a murderer, when he lies, he speaks his native language'

Lies kill.

Posted by: Christian J. Chuba | Jul 16 2021 0:24 utc | 29

@ Posted by: mismatch | Jul 15 2021 23:49 utc | 26

By 2007, the financial elite already knew something would happen - but not a structural crisis. In fact, they predicted nothing: the chain of bankruptcies started at the end of 2006; September 2008 was just the date it "leaked" to the "real economy".

Not every crisis is bad for capitalism. Cyclical crisis are natural and beneficial to capitalism. The crisis of 2008 was not a cyclical crisis, but a structural one. They probably thought it was either a cyclical crisis (a la Dotcom crisis of 2000) or, if something more serious, something the free market would easily be able to "self-regulate" out of.

Posted by: vk | Jul 16 2021 0:39 utc | 30

The Guardian is totally non-trustable these days. It talks and looks left, but its a disguise because when push really comes to shove, like when elections take place, they wax right wing and stop many reader's comments from being made. In recent years they have almost gotten rid of the comments facility entirely.

A veritable wolf in sheep's clothing and now a promulgator of fake news. The recent coverage of the Cuban demonstrations was a perfect example.

Posted by: George Wendell | Jul 16 2021 3:04 utc | 31

QA (14)

Weird. To double-check myself, prior to posting my comment, I stuck the offending phrase in Google and Yandex, and all I came up with were the (long) titles of two pre-soviet-era documents - the balance of whose available text contained a lot of semi-archaic phrasings (and spellings, for that matter, like the widespread use of the concluding ъ). I took that as sufficient confirmation, apparently mistakenly.

Oh well, the point stands even without that support...

Posted by: ДжММ | Jul 16 2021 3:37 utc | 32

A question: Is Orbis Intelligence Business a part of the Integrity Initiative? This story and others (Skripal for instance) convinced me of the reality of a running information war. There is a UK army unit whose job is to fight there and the integrity initiative appears to me as a part of it.

Posted by: DidierF | Jul 16 2021 4:08 utc | 33

Whatever the truth or not behind this story it can form the basis of an application for a FISA warrant against Donald Trump

Posted by: M. Le Docteur Ralph | Jul 16 2021 6:42 utc | 34

Posted by: ДжММ | Jul 16 2021 3:37 utc | 32

My language has a very similar grammar to Russian, and the word order is very flexible as long as the meaning is clear. Grammatical endings indicate the role of words in the sentence. Deviations from the more usual order can be used for emphasis.

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Jul 16 2021 9:58 utc | 35

Piotr (35), does mine. I don't know your tongue (as far as I am aware), but neither in Lithuanian nor in Russian does 'flexible' mean limitlessly so. For example, while adjective and the noun it modifies can generally move freely, it would be flat out incorrect to arrange a sentence where the locative-case noun was before the subject-predicate pair, while its locative-case adjective came after the pair. This variation is only encountered rarely in poetry to achieve a rhyme, since sense can be made from it, even if the grammar is broken.

It is wrong, but poets are, after all, accorded such consideration.

Posted by: ДжММ | Jul 16 2021 12:09 utc | 36

vk and mismatch,

If you want you can follow the GFC in real time on this ancient thread beginning October 2007.

I'm antiaristo.

My favourite excerpt

Junk Debt Crisis: “Lake Tahoe Housewife To Blame”

June 27 – Following months of housing crisis, delinquency, default, foreclosure, rising bond yields, widening credit spreads and freak atmospheric conditions, Wall Street has finally announced the identity of the culprit responsible: Mrs. Margaralene Wozniak of Maple Terrace, Lake Tahoe. Mrs. Wozniak, 87, lies at the heart of the once profitable partnership between subprime lenders and Wall Street brokerage firms that is now toboganning crazily toward a frenzied charnel-house of blood-letting horror. Since the beginning of 2006, almost all US mortgage companies have closed or declared bankruptcy – and Mrs. Wozniak is to blame, according to industry experts. (continues)

Posted by: John Cleary | Jul 16 2021 12:22 utc | 37

Posted by: Michael888 | Jul 15 2021 23:01 utc | 23

Quoting Goebbels for media manipulation is somewhat weak in this age and time. Nazi Germany existed for some longer than 25yrs, while they used their methods effectively it is a short time to scientifically prove them.

US, on the other hand, is pushing that crap adleast 70 years (or even longer, depending on topic).

If there is Nazi reincarnation and Goebbels alive today, they would be quoting American media moguls (we know who they are).

Posted by: Abe | Jul 16 2021 12:29 utc | 38

@Posted by: Abe | Jul 16 2021 12:29 utc | 38

It is called the Reiteration Effect aka Illusory truth effect.
Psychologists have been studying the effect for decades.

Posted by: librul | Jul 16 2021 13:27 utc | 39

Clearly, no one got the memo from the big liar himself, Trump, that CNN and the likes (read "neo-liberal/intelligence-generated-propaganda media") was fake news. Something about the boy who cried wolf (that and a broke clock is right two time a day)...

Posted by: Seer | Jul 16 2021 13:35 utc | 40

@John Cleary | Jul 16 2021 12:22 utc | 37

Your contributions here are much appreciated by me. This particular one made me giggle for a change.

Posted by: Lurk | Jul 16 2021 13:44 utc | 41

Posted by: librul | Jul 16 2021 13:27 utc | 39

Didn't mean on that particular method, but using Nazi Germany and Goebbels as some media manipulation gods - they have been superseded by far worse.

Posted by: Abe | Jul 16 2021 13:46 utc | 42

Refreshing the Kayfabe in anticipation of the 2024 Presidential election?

Steele dossier:

  • Increased animosity towards Russia (Democrats hate Russia more, Republicans hate China more);
  • Allowed Trump to consolidate his position as leader of the Tea Party Republicans via Trump-Deep State kayfabe;
  • Distracted from Trump's pro-establishment betrayals: Trump cut taxes, increased military spending, supported Israel, nearly started a war with Iran and was generally belligerent. No much different than previous Presidents.


Posted by: Jackrabbit | Jul 16 2021 14:14 utc | 43

Caitlin Johnstone 'goes there': Luke Harding’s Continued Employment Discredits All Western Media

An excerpt:

Luke Harding should not be able to find employment anywhere more influential than the far side of a cashier’s counter, yet here he is still getting his ridiculous stories published by one of the most influential news media outlets in the English-speaking world.

Given legitimacy by The Guardian‘s publication, other western media are picking up this transparently bogus story and hyping it through the roof ...

<> <> <> <>

A must read as she details, in a way that's easily understandable, why the continuing Russiagate nonsense is complete baloney.


Posted by: Jackrabbit | Jul 16 2021 14:30 utc | 44

@ Posted by: Abe | Jul 16 2021 12:29 utc | 38

Unless you're counting the Social-Fascist era (1919-1932), Nazi Germany lasted 12 years (1933-1945).

Posted by: vk | Jul 16 2021 14:50 utc | 45

@ Posted by: John Cleary | Jul 16 2021 12:22 utc | 37

Gérard Duménil and Dominique Lévy ("The Crisis of Neoliberalism", 2013) found documental evidence the chain of collapse started somewhere in the end of October 2006. By 2007, everybody with insider information in Wall Street knew a crisis would burst, that's why the bigwigs started to hedge.

But nobody in Wall Street imagined it would be a structural crisis. It didn't cross anybody's mind (except for the few Marxist economists of the area and some two broken clocks) it would be the death of Neoliberalism, that it would be the beginning of the end of the New American Century, that it would be the start of the decline of the American Empire.

The most tragic person in the 2008 crisis (and who best illustrates the unpredictable nature of the crisis to the liberals) was Ben Bernanke. Before 2008, he was probably the most powerful and prestigious man in the world. His career instantly turned to dust after 2008. Nowadays, nobody remembers (or don't want to remember, if you're an American) who Bernanke was. His most recent book was published without furor, and is a very lamentable and forgettable work.

Another sign the 2008 crisis was not expected at all by the American people is George W. Bush himself. He had a triumphal re-election after the spectacular victory in Iraq in 2003-2004 (in which Saddam Houssein was executed in a humiliating fashion) and he was well positioned to elect his Republican successor. In less than two months, he was trounced by Obama. Had the 2008 crisis burst two months later, he would probably be able to elect his successor (which was John McCain), although it would be a tough fight (Obama was well-funded and well-groomed by the financial elite in Chicago, and he doubled McCain's spending during the campaign). George W. Bush's - the imperator POTUS, victorious in Iraq - reign ended in a humiliating fashion, when the Congress blocked his proposal for a bail out of the banks, in November 2008.

Posted by: vk | Jul 16 2021 15:03 utc | 46

Luke Harding is a serial fantasist.

Also, if Paul Robinson is to be believed, the "leaked screenshots ZOMG" contain grammatical and linguistic errors that no native speaker of Russian would make.

Posted by: Feral Finster | Jul 16 2021 15:57 utc | 47

@ DidierF | Jul 16 2021 4:08 utc | 33.. orbis sure looks like a part of integrity initiative.. if not, they are definitely part of the full on disinfo campaign out of britian..

@ 44 jackrabbit quote from caitlin - "Given legitimacy by The Guardian‘s publication..." what legitimacy?? the guardian is an intel agency dispensary.. that mostly it!!

Posted by: james | Jul 16 2021 16:09 utc | 48

@ 47 feral finster.... don't have to read paul robinson to get that.... see @ ДжММ | Jul 15 2021 16:35 utc | 8

Posted by: james | Jul 16 2021 16:11 utc | 49

vk @Jul16 15:03 #46

Revisionist claptrap, vk.

... nobody in Wall Street imagined it would be a structural crisis.

Wrong! Anyone with some brains knew what was happening - Wall Street execs saw it but instead of attempting to rectify it they complained of competitive pressures because the fraud was so damn profitable to them. Here's Chuck Prince CEO of Citibank sloughing off the responsibility that society expects from a banker:

“When the music stops, in terms of liquidity, things will be complicated. But as long as the music is playing, you’ve got to get up and dance. We’re still dancing,” ... [Prince] said in an interview with the FT in Japan.

And here's Yves Smith calling him out in real time:
… Prince has in essence said he knows that when the music stops, it won’t be one chair that will be removed, but several, perhaps most. He seems supremely confident in his ability to know when to exit, but with everyone planning to stay as late as they can, he is likely to be underestimating how quickly conditions can change.

... [that] it would be the death of Neoliberalism

Wait .. what? Neoliberalism is dead? Didn't we just elect a President who is referred as the "big man" who gets 10%?

... that it would be the start of the decline of the American Empire.

AFAICT, the American Empire hasn't substantially declined. It's opponents have gained and are working together. And the Empire has moved to address that challenge. Hence the new Cold War.

The most tragic person in the 2008 crisis ... was Ben Bernanke.

"Tragic" is definitely the wrong word. It's a word that evokes unwarranted sympathy for the person who may be most responsible for whole mess. Bernanke deliberately and blatantly ignored warnings and FAILED to do his job as regulator.

To call Bernanke's experience "tragic" is an affront to everyone that actually suffered from his failure.

When he was informed, in an officially recorded Fed meeting, of indicators of an impeding crisis, he immediately adjourned the meeting and when the meeting recommenced it was clear that the danger signals would not be addressed.

He allowed the banks free reign to continue the fraud. His support of the banks was known as the 'Bernanke Put'. He was Alan Greenspan's devotee and hand-picked successor. Greenspan's body count (deaths from Greenspan-originated policies) now stands at 267.


Posted by: Jackrabbit | Jul 16 2021 16:26 utc | 50


Surprisingly, no one reacted to proof of Treason.
(See: Posted by: librul | Jul 15 2021 22:49 utc | 22)

Sec of Treasury Henry Paulson left a trail of treason.
His original proposal for a financial bailout was a coup document.
He made a move for King-like powers and this coup attempt is fully documented.
(See: Posted by: librul | Jul 15 2021 22:49 utc | 22)

Before becoming Sec of Treasury Henry Paulson was sole chairman and CEO
of Goldman Sachs.

As Sec of Treasury Henry Paulson was well positioned to benefit Goldman Sachs
before, during and after the 2008 banking crisis.

A useful read:

"These decisions preserved billions of dollars in value for Goldman's executives and shareholders."

"the firm has escaped tough federal limits on 2009 bonuses to executives of firms that received bailout money.

Goldman announced record earnings in July [2009], and the firm is on course to surpass $50 billion in revenue in 2009 and to pay its employees more than $20 billion in year-end bonuses."

And a whole lot more.

Posted by: librul | Jul 16 2021 16:32 utc | 51

@ Posted by: Jackrabbit | Jul 16 2021 16:26 utc | 50

Bourgeois economy doesn't have a concept of structural crisis. This is a Marxist category. Obviously, they didn't predict 2008 would be structural - they didn't because they couldn't. Yes, it would be ugly, its solution would be barely legal/outright illegal - but it would still be just a cyclical crisis (i.e. the music may stop, but eventually it will start playing again).

Big or small, a cyclical crisis is still a cyclical crisis. Bourgeois economy believes every crisis is cyclical, i.e. they're ultimately good for capitalism because it weeds out weaker/smaller capital and strengthen the bigger/stronger capital. It opens the path for a new boom. You'll see a plethora or articles from that time calling a new, unprecedented boom for the American economy for the simple fact it was a big crisis. A correspondent boom always follows a crisis and vice versa, according to bourgeois economy - that is the equilibrium hypothesis of capitalism, which unites every branch of Neoclassic Economics (Keynesianism included).

Except the 2008 crisis didn't result in a correspondent boom. It resulted in "new normal", i.e. a new stagnation. A depression. The West never fully recovered from it. It opened the way for China's evident ascension (rise of Xi Jinping in 2012). It put an end to all serious pretensions to a "New American Century". It demolished the American prestige around the world (its soft power is still high, but only because was already to through the roof before 2008).

Before 2008, American prestige was incontestable. It was a given fact of nature. Yes, it could commit some punctual mistakes (e.g. it managed Iraq with a too heavy hand, killing 1 million innocent Iraqi as "collateral effect" - but that was a very small price to pay in the eyes of the American and Western European peoples), but nothing that couldn't be forgiven and quickly forgotten (abstracted). The Pink Wave in Latin America was a mere glitch in the Matrix. Cuba was just a living fossil. Putin was still Yeltsin's loyal successor. China was at its most pro-capitalist/liberal President ever (Hu Jintao), and had just entered the WTO. Africa was just a constellation of incorrigible primitive peoples who had failed God Capitalism. The DotCom bubble had just been crushed as if it was nothing. Neoliberalism achieved the status of hard science. Everything was fine. It all "melted into thin air" after September 2008.

Posted by: vk | Jul 16 2021 17:05 utc | 52

Posted by: vk | Jul 16 2021 14:50 utc | 45

I am counting. They had their way before they came to power.

Posted by: Abe | Jul 16 2021 17:44 utc | 53

Now if the US ever decides to have Steele extradited for creating and selling false information used in a coup attempt Harding can be added to that extradition as a bonus too.

Posted by: JR | Jul 16 2021 18:04 utc | 54

vk @Jul16 17:05 #52

I agree with you that the 2008 GFC was a shock to the system and impaired US credibility - especially after the revelations that USA had concocted reasons to attack Iraq and CIA's rendition and torture. I don't agree that any analytical framework can bend the light sufficiently for Bernanke to be viewed as a "tragic" figure.

You seem to be saying that Bernanke's tragedy was that he was unknowingly responsible for the destruction of the Empire. However, IMO Bernanke was knowingly part of the war on the middle class via the Bush tax cuts (which Obama made permanent in a stage-managed fiasco termed "the fiscal cliff") and financial fraud. The capitalist system ossified into neo-liberalism as money was extracted from the middle-classes.

After the Cold War, it was no longer deemed necessary to showcase the wonders of middle-class life. Nor was investing in infrastructure necessary when the wealthy invested in their own infrastructure (private planes, gated communities, etc.) and industry could be outsourced to China and other countries. Thus, USA has broken roads, and failing bridges.

Your Marxist analysis explains the 2008 GFC in anodyne terms of "strong capital" and "weak capital" while the rest of us just see a fascist system slyly hidden with money-driven elections, lip-service from faux populist saviors, revolving doors and under-the-table payoffs, and media pearl-clutching. It's a system that defies reform as, for the right people, it 'prospers':

Treason doth never prosper because if does, none dare call it treason.

If the Empire falls, it's that pernicious and "treasonous" system that will be it's downfall, not Bernanke. Lack of accountability is the death of any system of governance and, as everyone knows, once dead, the fish rots from the head.

However, in a strange twist of fate, the challenge from Russia and China has revitalized this corrupt system in the form of Trump's MAGA and Biden's rallying the Empire against China. Rather than breathing it's last breathe as so many have hoped for, butt-hurt Empire asshats have rallied. Many at moa believe that TPTB action is too-little, too late.

But it is worse than that. Their initial knee-jerk reaction is to be more insular and more controlling instead of instituting needed governance reform (accountability). These control-freaks have chosen to double-down on their game-playing and mind-fucking. They raise the competition between East and West into an existential crisis and hope that people don't notice that the shafting and looting continues. I predict that will not end well. There will be reform or collapse.


Posted by: Jackrabbit | Jul 16 2021 20:02 utc | 55

Since 2019 (and probably at least a year earlier) Steele has been involved in The Citizens, a well-resourced but shadowy UK organization that originally promoted Carole Cadwalladr's stories about dark forces behind the Brexit vote and the election of Trump in 2016. In May 2020 The Citizens set up "Independent SAGE" a network of left-leaning academics who promote "zero covid" and denounce others who take the more realistic view that we have to live with what will eventually be just another endemic coronavirus. Another key member of the Citizens is Tamsin Shaw, who like Cadwalladr has been promoting Steele's dossier and other Russiagate nonsense from Harding since at least 2018. The Citizens is linked to other MI6 disinfo ops including the Integrity Initiative, Byline Times and Bellingcat.

I'm not sure what is going on here -- the real ownership and control of The Citizens is hidden behind nominees. They may be just grifters who have found a way to cream off some of the covert funding for "countering coronavirus misinformation". Or maybe it's a power grab by securocrats to scare people into accepting surveillance and to bring public health into the fold of "national security". If so they've succeeded: the national public health agency is being subsumed into the Joint Biosecurity Centre.

Posted by: pyotrstepanovich | Jul 16 2021 20:05 utc | 56

JR wrote:

Now if the US ever decides to have Steele extradited for creating and selling false information used in a coup attempt

There was no "coup attempt" it was all a phony scam play acting to get morons to believe that Trump was a heroic figure doing heroic combat with the forces of evil so that they would not notice what Trump was really doing. .

The problem with the stupid "coup attempt" story is that Trump gave those "forces of evil" that he was supposedly fighting against everything they could possibly dream of. He gave them and their corporations huge tax cuts and huge budget increases for the military and rolled back the pesky regulations and appointed judges that will always side with corporations. No other president has been able to deliver to TPTB as effectively as Trump.

Posted by: jinn | Jul 16 2021 20:24 utc | 57

Good article by b. Should be noted that in the 3rd week of January in 2016, Trump was leading Cruz 34%-14% in a CNN New Hampshire primary poll. CNN polls suck but some of us did think Trump would beat Hillary. On MSNBC's Morning Joe almost a month before the general election, Joe Scarborough was saying Trump couldn't win. @Uranus_Einstein (me) quickly tweeted a challenge: "@JoeNBC I'll bet you $100,000 that Trump wins #morningjoe" No response from Scarborough.

Posted by: Bobby Fischer | Jul 16 2021 20:42 utc | 58

@ Posted by: Jackrabbit | Jul 16 2021 20:02 utc | 55

That's not the Marxist analysis, that's the bourgeois analysis. They thought 2008 would be just a speed bump, to be followed by an equivalent boom (equilibrium hypothesis).

Marxists were talking about structural crisis of capital.

Posted by: vk | Jul 16 2021 21:01 utc | 59

Lurk, thank you, nice to know

Posted by: John Cleary | Jul 16 2021 22:10 utc | 60

Cool take on the Harding dreg... Paul Robinson ever polite and ever to the point.

Posted by: fx | Jul 16 2021 22:25 utc | 61

vk @Jul16 21:01 #59

It may well be that there was a structural shift if the persistent need for Quantitative Easing (QE) is any indication. And there is STILL no return to mark-to-market accounting. Which maybe makes some sense given that QE has distorted markets.

But I think the hopes of Marxists and progressives that a structural shift might lead to political change has been all-but dashed. Occupy Wall Street was shut down and in its place came the faux populists. First Obama's deception ("Change You Can Believe In!"), then Bernie's sheep-dogging. And Tea Party Republicans were compromised by Trump (now these "patriots" are accused of sedition).

So where does that leave us? In a sort of limbo. TPTB were able to patch things up well enough to prevent revolt but they will have more difficulty the next time around. The cost of re-militarizing (a Cold War imperative); persistent imbalances (debt financing); financial bubbles; a frayed social fabric; and continuing lack of accountability means that TPTB are walking a tightrope of their own making.

They've tried to put a net under that tightrope with the "Great Reset". Which IMO will go nowhere unless/until it is needed and then they will proclaim that it was in the works all along (because Big Brother loves you). They hope that, if it comes to it, most people will be so happy to get on the dole that they won't ask difficult questions like: where did all the money go? LOL. A shit-ton of money is going to MIC for the new arms race and the new space race and nobody seems to care.


Posted by: Jackrabbit | Jul 16 2021 23:59 utc | 62

@ Posted by: Jackrabbit | Jul 16 2021 23:59 utc | 62

So where does that leave us? In a sort of limbo.

Only for the West. China is clearly not in a "limbo".

It has nothing to do with politics. This is pure economic theory. Marxism correctly predicted 2008 would happen the way it did; bourgeois economy didn't. One theory is clearly superior to the other.

Posted by: vk | Jul 17 2021 0:59 utc | 63

@pyotrstepanovich | Jul 16 2021 20:05 utc | 56

Interesting catch.. hadn't heard of that one before.

They're a funny bunch allright. Here's "citizen" Lord Strasburg, a multimillionaire who bought himself a life peerage in the house of lords by dumping a some small change into the Liberal Democrats party coffers.

Lord Strasburger is a Liberal Democrat politician, with an interest in protecting privacy and democracy from governments and corporations.

According to his wikipedia entry, he's a real friend in need to other LibDem philantropists:

Strasburger also contributed to the defence of Michael Brown, the convicted fraudster who fled after donating £2.4 million to the Liberal Democrats.[1] Strasburger had also put up the bail money for Brown, which was forfeited when Brown fled.

And "citizen" Christopher Steele:

Christopher is a former intelligence officer, who ran the Russia desk at MI6 in London between 2006 and 2009. Using anonymous source material, he produced a dossier claiming Russia collected a file of comprising US information on Donald Trump.

What a nice sample of every day citizens have we got for there.

Currently, per the company info records, the director is Kerry Francesca Shaw.

Kerry is a content and strategy specialist with experience in brand marketing at Nike, consumer insight research across a range of youth brands, and leading collaborations with top tier creatives across fashion and the arts.

"Brand marketing at Nike"? That sounds a bit meagre in comparison to such philantropic giants as "ex" MI-6 Steele and the goog Lord. and Is she Tamsin's little sis? Anyway, the footwork was done for her by a John Roddison FCA, who

founded Xplorer Plc. Currently, he is CEO, Secretary & Non-Executive Director at this company.

He is also Senior Partner at Brown McLeod Ltd. and on the board of 83 other companies.

83 other companies, quite a busy body our John. But don't worry, he has plenty time left for typical philantropist's needs:
John also advises many non-domiciled individuals on their worldwide and UK tax positions.

Specialist in Entertainment: Music, Film, Creative. Property. High Net Worth clients.

They look like another bellingcat, but with a focus on deviant social medias spreading wrongthink about the coronavirus pandemic instead of evil poisongas-wielding former ophtalmologists. And the evil Rushuns, of course. What else?
The Russia Report

Why did the British government suppress publication of a report into Russian interference into British politics in December 2019? Parliament’s Intelligence and Security Committee (ISC) report into Russian state interference in UK elections was submitted to Downing Street on 17 October 2019. It remains — today — unavailable to the public.We mobilised a community of journalists, artists, technologists and citizen volunteers to address this issue. How much influence does the Russian state have? Where does its soft power reach? And which politicians are implicated? Watch this space.

A few days before the release of The Russia Report, The Citizens chaired a panel show of experts in the field, including Anne Applebaum, Catherine Belton, Bill Browder, Luke Harding and Tamsin Shaw, who discussed the likely content of the report, and what the consequences of its publication might be.

Look o look, they're not just good friends with the inscrutable Luke Harding, they even have the voice of impartial objectivity on all matters Russian - Bill Browder.

Lollollol they even feature incubator babies (in partnership with the daily heil)

So I looked into this Tamsin Shaw, whose tenure as an Associate Professor of Philosophy and European Studies at New York University is not in the least an impediment to also be a prolific columnist, delivering diligently what she's been paid for.

Trump’s Impact on Nuclear Proliferation

Donald Trump has never been known for his visionary foreign policy and yet his presidency will leave the world transformed. In an age of disinformation, the precise nature of the changes he has brought about in global affairs can be elusive, particularly when those changes have resulted from his administration’s clandestine negotiations with Russian officials and businessmen. While America has been focused on the ways in which the Kremlin interfered to support Trump in the 2016 election, too little attention has been paid to what Moscow intended to get out of a Trump presidency or indeed what they got.

Notwithstanding the above sleaze that she is willing to wallow in, Tamsin's no dummy. If you read some of her other writings, the contours of her extended background and network become readily apparent.

(Prepend to the folowing url to access the full version)
The Bitter Secret of ‘Wormwood’ - the sordid tale of Frank Olson's murder. I have written here before about that case and Tamsin Shaw is fully aware of the extent of the story. She mentions the biological warfare research that Olson was involved in, even bluntly suggests that he was eliminated to stop him blowing the whistle on it, but - and there she betrays her allegiances - without a trace of outrage over it. Illegal and immoral biological warfare and extrajudicial killing to keep secrets a secret is just par for the course according to Tamsin Shaw. All in a days work, so to say.

(Prepend to the folowing url to access the full version)
Same here. Tamsin Shaw is well-informed in matters of psychological persuasion and accessing the irrational. Except when it comes to Trump - Putin collusion fairy tales, then she is genuinely naive and sincerely upset. How moving.

I bet Tamsin Shaw shook Jimmy Wales hands many times, they share so many networks. But she has no wikipedia page. Convenient.

Posted by: Lurk | Jul 17 2021 1:48 utc | 64

vk @Jul17 0:59 #63: This is pure economic theory.

But it's not. Propaganda plays a role today that is, I think, much greater than what Marx imagined.

1984 was written in 1949 while Das Kapital was written in 1867.


Posted by: Jackrabbit | Jul 17 2021 2:50 utc | 65

Luke Harding started his 5Eyes career in New Delhi: the mission was to plead Muslims free of any wrongs as the US dollar had gone from gold standard to Muslim oil standard. The victims in this case: the majority of Hindus, who dared to ask equal treatment for all inside India. The Western left swallowed it hook, line and sinker.

Posted by: Antonym | Jul 18 2021 4:45 utc | 66

@vk &JR

The fact that Alan Greenspan declared Derivatives to be "weapons of mass [financial] destruction" as far back as 1998 and Warren Buffett concurred a few years later confirms that they knew damn well the danger inherent in the use of these instruments.

What esle could "weapons of mass [financial] destruction" refer to other than they were a systemic threat?

Vk will of course conjur up more ontellectually disjonest bs to argue otherwise, because hes a proven liar he always does and it always is intellectually dishonest bs.

Vk's laughable dishonest and arrogant attempts to dismiss this record of acknowledgment of those dangers is to be expected given his record of persistent dishonesty since he commenced posting here.

Your attempts to engage vk in rational debate, JR, are a complete waste of time and only encourage him in his dishonesty.

One so willing to lie in the service of ideology, has no concern for petty matters like rational debate, honesty or ethical behaviour since for a liar like vk the end always justifies the means

Posted by: Triden | Jul 19 2021 16:35 utc | 67

Vk in fact, with his persistent recourse to intellectually dishonest & circular arguments, resembles more than anything else those he claims to be against.

Posted by: Triden | Jul 19 2021 16:39 utc | 68

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