Should we trust Obama to be honest in his peace talks with Iran and Syria? His lightning shift from warmonger to peacemaker surprised everyone, including his closest regional allies — Israel, Saudi Arabia, and Turkey — not to mention the entire U.S. congress, many of whom seem intent on sabotaging the Iran peace talks by imposing more war-provoking sanctions.
Let’s not forget that Obama was minutes away from blasting Syria into the Stone Age, but as he stared into the abyss of war he blinked at the last moment. Obama hid the consequent humiliation behind a hastily agreed upon chemical weapons deal proposed by Russia, which served to buy him time to think about the regional war he damn near started.
And now suddenly Obama is acting uncharacteristically rational. He’s agitating for peace among his anti-Syria coalition of close regional allies, namely Turkey and the Gulf Monarchy Sunni Islam dictatorships (Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, UAE, etc.). Obama is pressuring them to stop sending money, arms, and Sunni Islamic extremist fighters into Syria to topple Assad, so that peace can be pursued instead, a 180 degree shift in strategy. This has already seemed to have had an effect with Qatar and Turkey.
It’s crucial to remember that Obama could have pursued a peaceful path for well over a year, when Russia and Syria first proposed peace talks. Obama ignored the proposals and John Kerry publicly ridiculed them, so confident they were that the U.S.-backed rebels would topple Assad. This strategy pushed Syrian civilization into barbarism, and peace talks were again proposed last spring — but Obama’s rebels boycotted the talks, since Obama had a plan to help the rebels topple the regime via a Libyan-style U.S. military bombing campaign.
So Syrian blood was allowed to keep flowing. For at least two years Obama oversaw and coordinated — via the CIA — the Syrian “arms trafficking pipeline” — as The New York Times called it — which has helped drive the death count to over 100,000 and made millions more refugees.
Without the massive support from the U.S., its allies, and “private donors” (oil-rich “royalty” from the Gulf state monarchies), this “civil war” would have unquestionably ended long ago.
It was only after Obama decided not to bomb Syria — and shifted towards peace talks — did his prized Syrian rebels agree to go to the negotiating table (keep in mind that Obama’s rebels are mostly talking heads with no real power on the ground; the Islamic extremist rebels dominate the ground and continue to boycott negotiations).
Obama had long insisted that “Assad must go,” but Assad is still in power and stronger than ever, with large sections of the population — though especially the ethnic and religious minorities — choosing him over the Islamic extremist rebels who would come to power in his place — the same rebels who are fighting to transform Syria into a Taliban-era Afghanistan.
The rebels already have a mini-Afghanistan in portions of the “liberated” areas of Syria where Raqqa is considered to be the largest city ever administered by al-Qada-style Islamic extremists. Shockingly, there remain some stubborn holdouts among the political left who consider these extremist-controlled areas to be “liberated” proof of a “revolution” in Syria.
Now, the U.S.-Russia initiated “Geneva II” Syria peace accords appear to be serious negotiations, not only because Obama’s rebels were finally encouraged to participate, but also because Obama’s regional allies are furious, Saudi Arabia and especially Israel, who expressed its anger by using fighter jets to yet again bomb Syria, the fourth time this year.
Ultimately, Obama will have to prove via action that he is sincere in peace talks. It’s entirely possible that the peace talks are a mere tactic intended to engage in a more strategic war.
For example, if the Syrian government can be blamed for the possible failure of the Geneva II peace talks, a new war motive will be ready-made for Obama to sell to the American public, more convincing than the prior chemical weapons attack.
How will we know Obama is pursuing peace talks with good intentions? If he puts forth proposals that are universally accepted as reasonable, as opposed to provocative.
If he makes unreasonable demands on the Syrian government, we’ll know he intends to bait Assad into rejecting the proposal in an attempt to prime the U.S. and European public for war. Identifying such a provocative proposal will be easy: the purpose of such peace negotiations would be to copy the conditions on the battlefield and paste them to a peace treaty; the side winning the war wins the peace.
The Syrian government is in the dominant position on the battlefield, and thus has huge leverage in sincerely conducted peace talks. But if Obama demands that a precondition to any talks is the removal of President Assad, this will be an obvious provocation to ruin the talks. Obama has recently implied that he’s backing off of this proposal that’s popular among the rebels, but it’s still possible that he may make a similarly unrealistic proposal with the intention of provoking a rejection, with the intention to wage war.
It’s possible that Obama recently attempted this aggressive negotiating tactic against Iran during the ongoing nuclear talks. The initial peace deal that was offered — that Iran was willing to accept — was a bad deal for Iran, proving that Iran was overeager for peace and sanctions relief.
It is also possible that by offering such a lousy deal Obama meant to provoke Iran — as Peter Lee recently suggested in an excellent article — but the failure of the talks fell on the French, who at the last minute ruined the deal by making additional unreasonable demands which the Iranians did not accept. This suggests that events didn’t go as Obama intended, since he’d prefer that Iran be blamed for any failure rather than the French.
If Obama is acting honestly about completing peace talks with Iran and Syria, the entire Middle East will have to change as a consequence, since U.S. allies in the region went “all in” against Syria at Obama’s request, upsetting their domestic populations via massive war-immigration flows and fighting that spilled over the borders of Lebanon, Turkey, and Iraq.
Political and social tension rose throughout the Middle East, infecting several countries with heavy doses of religious sectarianism, the main weapon used against the Syrian Government. Even if peace is secured for the moment, the thousands of foreign fighters in Syria will return home as heroes to many, destabilizing their countries as happened after the Afghanistan Jihad that gave birth to al-Qada and the Taliban — also backed by the U.S. and the Gulf monarchies.
Shifting the entire Middle East back to a peaceful status quo won’t be easy; Obama used U.S. foreign power as a lever that pivoted the entire Middle East against Syria and Iran, and pivoting back isn’t so simple. Close allies have lost faith in the promises of the U.S. and will be less willing in the future to follow Obama into wild adventures that destabilize the Middle East with absolutely nothing to show for it, except blood, corpses, and general misery.
Obama’s peace talks could be easily sabotaged — even if he is acting with sincerity. Several recent events in the region were likely conducted with the intention of undermining the talks. The recent terrorist bombing near the Iranian embassy in Lebanon, the continued Israel airstrikes against Syria, and the possibility of more U.S. sanctions against Iran could undermine any potential peace, while strengthening the right wing of Iran, Israel, and the U.S, which would inevitably lead back to yet another pivot, shifting back to the path of war and a resumption of a U.S. bombing campaign against Syria.
Even if talks are successful, the Middle East will remain a turbulent region, as long as competing world powers — the U.S., EU, China, and Russia — are competing for raw materials, markets, and other profitable business activity. In fact, the shift in strategy is only a different means to accomplish the same end: to push Russian and Chinese influence out of the region all the while maintaining U.S. hegemony.
If Obama is serious about peace talks, he must prove it by pressuring his regional allies publicly and privately to do what’s necessary for peace, as well as condemning Israel in front of the world stage if it continues to act provocatively, while also publicly denouncing the Democrats and Republicans if they try to provoke war with fresh sanctions.
Only this kind of consistency is capable of ensuring a temporary peace with Iran and Syria, and anything less will prove that Obama is implicitly pursuing the path of war by other means.
Illiteracy and racial dysfunction…
Current U.S. Census Bureau figures show 22.3 percent of American citizens live below the poverty line. That equates to 69,520,000 Americans. They cannot secure a livable-wage job in order to pay for food, home, medical care and basic living in this country.
Within 37 years, demographic experts project an additional 100 million legal immigrants flowing into the United States of America. They expect to arrive from Africa, Indonesia, India, China, the Middle East, Mexico, Central America, South America and many of the poverty-stricken countries of the world. Their impact on America: they will force the addition, in sheer numbers, of an additional population enough to duplicate our 20 top metropolitan cities in the U.S. in 2013.
(Source: Pew Research Center, U.S. Population Projections by Fogel/Martin and the U.S. Census Bureau document those demographic facts.)
But what most Americans fail to understand stems from the fact that world human population expires at 57 million annually. Humans not only replace 57 million people, but also add an additional 80 million, net gain, to the planet annually. Total: 7.1 billion people in 2013. That’s 137 million new babies that need to be watered, fed, housed, warmed, medicated and educated annually. Unfortunately, those countries with those fecundity rates cannot educate that many new children annually. They lack teachers, books, supplies and schools. Tragically, over 10 million children starve to death annually. (Source: United Nations Population figures.)
The tragedy of America’s 1965 immigration bill added 100 million immigrants within 40 years; then, the 1986 amnesty accelerated the speed of the onslaught and now the proposed S744 amnesty bill expects to add another 100 million immigrants within 35 years or less. Those desperate immigrants will pour into America at 200,000 every 30 days, along with their birth rates, diversity visas and chain-migration.
This five-minute video presents an example of illiteracy and what it costs you as this woman birthed 15 kids on welfare:
Why do you think those countries around the world suffer misery and starvation within their societies? What causes it? Why can’t they duplicate Western skills for filling grocery stores to the brim with food like you see all across America? Answer: illiteracy, lack of intellectual horsepower, cultural poverty, lack of water and arable land.
Unfortunately, we inject those factors into the USA at blinding speed. The new amnesty provides for two million, that’s 2,000,000 million third world immigrants annually. They average 900,000 births annually, which equals 9 million in 10 years. That’s a total of 2.9 million legal immigrants annually. (Source: Dr. Steven Camorata, www.cis.org) When you look at S744, you see 250,000 green cards annually and many more visas on all levels. We could see that 100 million accelerate our population even faster than the predicated 37 years to rush from 316 million to 438 million.
Along the way, we lack the funds, the teachers, the schools, the resources and the languages to teach the endless millions of kids inundating our failing school systems. Over 85 languages create linguistic chaos in my Denver, Colorado school system with minimum of 50 percent dropout rates and as high as 67 percent. Detroit, Michigan runs 76 percent dropout rates as reported by Brian Williams at NBC Nightly News.
We face colossal cultural and educational dysfunction. What one factor drives failed states around the world? Answer: illiteracy.
With over 42 million Americans who cannot read, write or perform simple math, we face enormous challenges that we will not be able to solve. Some 48.1 million Americans subsist on food stamps today. They cannot work, function, feed or house themselves. Do any of us possess any idea what the next 100 million immigrants will mean as to food stamps, section 8 housing, welfare and medical care? How will we cope with their languages?
(Source: Tyler Durden, www.zerohedge.com, “23 percent of Americans illiterate.”)
Racial and linguistic segregation across America
When people lack education, but see wealth on TV, they react. When they can’t attain it, they shoplift, steal cars, form gangs and dwell in underworld ethnic enclaves. You can see it in most failed countries in the world.
Today in Jackson, Mississippi, with a 90 percent African-American population, they elected a mayor who promotes changing five southern states of Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia and South Carolina into a separate Republic of New Black Afrika.
Journalist Andrea Ryan wrote, “Raising his fist in a black power salute during his swearing in, the newly elected mayor of Jackson, Mississippi was true to his character as a former leader of the black supremacy group, Republic of New Afrika. The group is dedicated to transforming five of the Southern states into an independent socialist black nation. Jackson Mayor Chokwe Lumumba, born in Detroit as Edwin Finley Taliaferro, is a radical activist, and co-founder of the Malcolm X Grassroots Movement. He’s, also, being praised by the Nation of Islam, who wrote in their publication, Final Call, that ‘the seeds of a black nation are already taking root in Mississippi.’
In Detroit, Michigan, now 93 percent Black and Middle Eastern population, Muslims expect to dominate that population as their numbers grow in the USA from their current seven million to well over 20 million by 2050. They possess the capacity to use the U.S. Constitution to install Sharia Law by voting power of the majority. At some point, another Mayor Chokwe Lumumba could rise out of the ashes of Detroit to lead it toward a separate state or country.
In the UK, France and Belgium, Sharia Law Muslims thugs prowl the streets to beat up on anyone uninformed enough to visit during the night. Last month, in London, England, ten Sharia “police”, caught on video, beat an American boy senseless and disfigured his face because he walked into the “no go zone” in the Muslim sector. France features over 70 “no go zones” dominated by Muslims.
Solid estimates in the USA show 22 Islamic “villages” guarded and walled off from public scrutiny in Pennsylvania, New York, Michigan and Oregon.
In Los Angeles, the legal and illegal Mexican-Latino population overwhelms schools, housing, hospitals and food stamp stores. California features four million illegal migrants and most of them work underground or with forged papers. They defraud food stamp and housing welfare rolls. Spanish fast becomes THE language of southern California. Unfortunately, they fled Mexico where the average child drops out of school by sixth grade. They repeat that cultural practice in California. At some point, a Spanish Chokwe Lumumba will rise out of the quagmire of Los Angeles to lead that arena into a satellite state of Mexico.
Short video on “EBT” (Electronic Benefits Transfer) food stamp cards paid for by your tax dollars to feed illiterate Americans who even ship the food to other countries. A rapper shows how to use them, steal them, trade them and defraud with them:
What does this all add up to in our country?
- A first world country cannot continue at that level of excellence in the face of illiteracy and intellectual dysfunction.
- A first world country cannot maintain its culture, language and educational levels of excellence by injecting itself with multiple languages, cultures and cultural illiteracy.
- One look at the United Kingdom, France, Norway, Canada, Australia, Sweden, Belgium and Holland offers a depressing look at the final outcome of mass immigration from disparate cultures and failed-states worldwide.
- Multiculturalism, illiteracy and multi-lingualism do not, cannot and will not maintain America as a cohesive, viable, educated and first world civilization.
- Since it’s not working in 2013, how will it work with another 100 million added immigrants within 37 year? Answer: it will not!
This video brings this entire Western world nightmare into sharper focus:
“Immigration by the numbers—off the chart” by Roy Beck
This 10 minute demonstration shows Americans the results of unending mass immigration on the quality of life and sustainability for future generations: in a few words, “Mind boggling!” www.NumbersUSA.org
Our situation will not become any prettier as we discuss the exhaustion of oil, resources and arable land in the next part of this series.
I realize it is hard for some people to understand (especially those holding political office), but in the United States, “We the People” are the sovereigns. America has no king. In America, “We the People” are Caesar. Someone rightly said, “In America, the people rule; they have the power of the ballot box, the jury box, and the cartridge box.” Amen. And in this land of liberty, nothing is more important than the jury box. The right to a speedy trial by a jury of one’s peers is a benchmark principle of a free land.
Juries have immeasurable power. Not only do they have power over the fate of the accused, they have power over the accusers. No one has more authority than a jury–not even the judge. And without hyperbole I can say that a constitutionally literate, fully informed jury is pretty much all that stands between the ballot box and the cartridge box.
In a letter to Thomas Paine, Thomas Jefferson wrote, “I consider [trial by jury] as the only anchor ever yet imagined by man by which a government can be held to the principles of its constitution.” And two years before the first musket shot was fired that started America’s War for Independence, a Boston lawyer by the name of John Adams said, “Representative government and trial by jury are the heart and lungs of liberty. Without them we have no other fortification against being ridden like horses, fleeced like sheep, worked like cattle, and fed and clothed like swine and hounds.”
All of the rhetoric of modern judges notwithstanding, juries have a constitutional duty and obligation to judge, not only the merits of the case before them, but also the merits of the law which brought the accused before them. And America’s Founding Fathers agree with what I just said.
John Adams said, “It is not only his [the juror’s] right, but his duty…to find the verdict according to his own best understanding, judgment, and conscience, though in direct opposition to the direction of the court.” Again, this is from one of our country’s most celebrated attorneys, a signer of the Declaration of Independence, and America’s second President. America’s first Supreme Court Chief Justice agreed with Adams. John Jay wrote, “The jury has the right to judge both the law as well as the fact in controversy.”
The rest of America’s founders agreed with Adams, Jay, and Jefferson. US Supreme Court Justice and signer of the Declaration, Samuel Chase, wrote, “The jury has the right to determine both the law and the facts.” Patrick Henry said, “Why do we love this trial by jury? Because it prevents the hand of oppression from cutting you off…This gives me comfort, that, as long as I have existence, my neighbors will protect me.”
Protect its neighbors is exactly what a jury in Liberty County, Florida, recently did. The neighbor in the case was none other than the county sheriff, Nick Finch. Infowars.com covers the story:
“Nick Finch, the Florida sheriff arrested in June after he defended the Second Amendment, has been declared ‘not guilty’ of the charges brought against him by the State of Florida, according to [former Graham County, Arizona, Sheriff] Richard Mack.
“The Liberty Co. sheriff was charged with felony ‘official misconduct’ and ‘falsifying public records’ after he released a suspect arrested on an unconstitutional gun charge and removed the arrest file.
“After closing arguments by prosecutors and the defense, the jury took less than 90 minutes to reach its verdict.”
The report continues saying, “During the trial, the sheriff testified that he released Floyd Eugene Parrish, who was arrested for unlawfully carrying a firearm, because he believed the Second Amendment trumped all state gun laws.
“As we reported back in June, the Florida Department of Law Enforcement accused Finch of covering up the arrest of Floyd Eugene Parrish after releasing him from the Liberty County Jail.
“On March 8, Sgt. James Joseph Hoagland of the Liberty County Sheriff’s Office arrested Parrish during a traffic stop after finding a .25 automatic pistol in Parrish’s right front pocket and a holstered revolver in his car, according to court records.
“Parrish was then taken to the county jail.
“After being notified of Parrish’s arrest, Finch took the arrest file and told jailers that Parrish would be released with no charges, according to investigators.
“Finch also ordered both the pistol and revolver be returned.”
See the report here:
This verdict is one of the most important jury decisions in modern history; and how many reports did you see about it in the mainstream media? Where was ABC, CBS, NBC, MSNBC, CNN, or FOX News?
Sheriff Finch is a modern-day Daniel. He stood for his principles, the Constitution, and the liberties of the people of his county; and he was thrown into a den of lions by Republican Governor Rick Scott and the FDLE (Florida Department of Law Enforcement). But an eight-person jury acquitted him of all charges and the sheriff was reinstated.
This is what a jury is supposed to do: protect its neighbors from the oppression of unlawful government. And that is exactly what that Liberty County jury did. They deserve the gratitude of liberty-loving people all over the United States.
It is pathetic and sad that Governor Scott did not stand with Sheriff Finch as he should have done. Scott threw this modern-day Daniel into the lion’s den, but God delivered him. Now the people of Florida should throw Governor Scott into the lion’s den (as King Darius did to Daniel’s accusers) by impeachment and removal from office for not defending the US Constitution, as he took an oath to do. I guarantee you that Patrick Henry, Thomas Jefferson, John Adams, Samuel Chase, and John Jay would have stood with Sheriff Finch. And so would US Supreme Court Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes. Justice Holmes said, “The jury has the power to bring a verdict in the teeth of both law and fact.”
And bringing “a verdict in the teeth of both law and fact” is exactly what a Liberty County, Florida, jury did. They upheld the constitutional right of people to keep and bear arms, and they repudiated the Florida State gun-control laws that abridge that right under the rubric of license.
In truth, every law-abiding citizen in this country has a right under the US Constitution to carry his or her arms–concealed or open. It is past time for county sheriffs, State governors, and local juries to follow the example of Sheriff Finch and this Liberty County, Florida, jury. It is time for freedom-loving people in all 50 states to demand that these copious State and local gun-control laws that prohibit or restrict the right of the people to keep AND BEAR arms be expunged. That means, if you are called upon to serve on a jury in a case involving a law that restricts the Second Amendment right to freely keep and bear arms, you should do what this Liberty County, Florida, jury did and acquit the accused.
All over America, sheriffs and governors pretend to be supporters of the Constitution. All over America, sheriffs and governors give lip service to the Second Amendment. It is time the American people start demanding more than lip service from their elected officials. We need sheriffs like Nick Finch. And we need governors like…well, like PATRICK HENRY. (Sadly, I can’t think of a single governor today to use as an example.)
Patrick Henry said he depended on his neighbors, when sitting as a jury, to protect him. Happily, Sheriff Finch has some good neighbors. But in truth, juries do more than protect individuals; they protect liberty itself. Any law that infringes on or contradicts the Bill of Rights should be considered null and void by any citizen-jury. In this way, it is the citizen-jury, not the Supreme Court, which is the final arbiter of a law’s constitutionality. Without the veto power of the jury (call it nullification, if you will), America is not a country of, by, and for the People: but a country of, by, and for the politicians and judges.
Kudos to Sheriff Finch and the people of Liberty County, Florida.
If you would like to send personal kudos to Sheriff Finch, here is the website with his contact information:
Humanity’s Umbilical Cord…
Have we forgotten the source of our sustenance? Have we allowed the apodictic evolutionary theoreticians to define our beginnings with convoluted nonsense? Have we assumed that the world should pursue the proliferation of remarkable labor saving and entertaining devices as if they are essential to the human race? We seek to travel faster and farther, communicate quicker and more completely, have more leisure and less work, and accumulate more knowledge and more power.
In past essays I wrote about the disconnection between the population and the land. Land provides the elements of life and when we fail to properly associate the population with the land we jeopardize a balance that is essential to our peaceful existence.
The Industrial Revolution created a drastic change in Western culture a change that has always been considered beneficial. Life in the Western World slowly became remote from the land and we forgot that the work that consumes our day is supported by the same dirt that our ancestors prayed would supply their food.
Indian writer Satish Kumar has written a book entitled “Soil, Soul, Society”. He describes the problem as anthropocentric: a worldview that human beings are at the center of the universe. He writes, “So if you want to take care of the universe, start with your soul. Care of the soul is for self-realisation. When you are at home within, you are at home in the universe. Taking care of yourself, being at ease with yourself, being happy within yourself, being fulfilled in yourself is a prerequisite, an imperative for self-realisation. Everything you truly need and want is within you. You are capable of solving every problem in the world with your inner wisdom.”
Kumar is on track with his concern about the danger of thinking the universe centers on human beings but he is wrong about our ability to “solve every problem” with “inner wisdom”
The Bible informs us that we were created from dust and to dust we shall return. There has never been a better description of our origin and condition! Part of the tendency to support an evolutionary creation stems from our disconnection from the land Though it is impossible to contend with the fact that our human bodies will ultimately return to dust anthropocentric theorists refuse to acknowledge reality.
When God created human beings from dust He created them in His own image. The Christian Bible confirms this fact but we do not need the Bible to determine our universal nature. With the birth blood still on their body’s babies claim their centrality. They cry loudly and harshly for love and sustenance. This elevation of self does not recede with time; children demand their toys and yours too; adolescents are tediously self-centered; the world revolves around the affairs of young men and women and in the middle years hidden methods of personal gain thrive. We have a God-like nature without His stature, wisdom, power, and righteousness.
It was our failure to see ourselves as we really are that allowed us to bless the Industrial Revolution without properly considering its dangers. Today, demi-gods experiment with human life as if they are vested with a right to tamper with Someone Else’s creation. They venture into an arena they are incapable of understanding as if there were no consequences to their actions. They leap without looking.
Humans are designed for physical work. As we invent additional devices to give us more leisure time with parallel efficiency we invent more jogging shoes and exercise machines to replace the physical work we are not doing.
There is nothing wrong with increasing knowledge and inventing labor saving devices as long as short term positive results do not result in long term disaster. We exist by the will of another on a planet that we did not create, in a universe too big for our apprehension, in a time span that is a speck in unfathomable infinity. We are wonderfully made and some of us are extremely brilliant but when we allow our god-like nature too overshadow our humble circumstance we are prone to major error.
Did human beings evolve through an evolutionary process that defies the obvious time/deterioration process or were they created by the same God that crafted the universe? There are numerous prolixity filled esoteric discussions of the Second Law of Thermodynamics and the meaning of the word “entropy”. Many of these dissertations are carefully crafted to protect Darwin’s theory of Evolution. “Highly energetic chemistry is thought to have produced a self-replicating molecule around 4 billion years ago, and half a billion years later the last common ancestor of all life existed. The current scientific consensus is that the complex biochemistry that makes up life came from simpler chemical reactions. The beginning of life may have included self-replicating molecules such as RNA and the assembly of simple cells.” (From Wikipedia)
The truth is that human beings are prisoners on a tiny planet located in a vast (maybe infinite) universe, limited by time, size, mental ability, physical ability, and capacity to completely comprehend the milieu in which they live.
When we ignore the restraints our Creator has set forth in His Word Darwin’s theory of Natural Selection gains validity. The strongest and smartest dominate, survive, and reproduce. Unending war for survival can be witnessed in the animal kingdom and continues with occasional modifications in the human realm.
The world’s leaders are overwhelmingly anthropocentric. They value their false conception of human capacity more than freedom, peace, and prosperity. So, since peace and freedom depend on our obedience to God’s Law, tyrants have risen to the fore.
When God gave His Law to Moses He gave us the formula for replacing the jungle code of natural selection with a life of purpose, peace, and prosperity. Today we have wandered so far from His intent that fantasy has overcome the lives of our leaders. We are being governed by people who no longer see the world as it is; people who would rather live a lie than confront the truth. They have gained their office through an electorate that has failed to properly assess the human condition; people who believe that the feeble intellect of our most brilliant can devise a formula for freedom. They are both wrong and instead of creating a better world they have become witnesses to its continued deterioration.
Tyrants rule America and our freedoms are quickly vanishing.
“To learn who rules over you, simply find out who you are not allowed to criticize.” – – Voltaire (1694-1778)
Mainstream media sources are now reporting:
The shooter at LAX, who killed one TSA (?) employee and wounded several others today, is in custody. His name is Paul Anthony Ciancia. He is 23 years old. His weapon was a semi-automatic rifle.
Other sources state Ciancia had a note in his bag which stated that he wanted to “kill TSA.”
Ciancia is a Los Angeles resident. His family lives in Pennsville, New Jersey. This morning, prior to the shooting, Ciancia’s father called the local Pennsville police and reported his son was missing.
The father also stated that his son had written to a sibling “in reference to taking his own life.”
That’s the storyline so far.
Agenda? Another gun murder in a public place, so take away guns from everybody. Semi-auto rifle was used? Ban them. Gun plus anti-government opinion? Terrorist. Step up surveillance, ID, watch, harass, and even arrest people who own guns and don’t like the government.
And now for the questions. This is a checklist that should accompany every such mass shooting:
Was the accused shooter seeing a psychiatrist?
Had he ever seen a psychiatrist or MD who prescribed psychiatric drugs?
If so, what were the drugs?
Ritalin (or other speed-type compounds) for ADHD?
Antidepressants, in particular the SSRI types (e.g., Prozac, Paxil, Zoloft)?
Both classes of drugs are known to push people over into suicidal ideation, suicide, violence, murder. (See Peter Breggin, Toxic Psychiatry, Medication Madness, and other titles. Also see the website, SSRI stories.)
Had the accused shooter ever withdrawn from, stopped using any psychiatric drugs? Withdrawal, done incorrectly, can cause severe problems, including aggression and violence.
Had the accused shooter ever stated he was under surveillance, was being harassed by authorities, was being targeted with microwaves, was hearing voices?
Yes, there are people who incorrectly believe these things are happening to them; but there are also people who are, in fact, being subjected to such harassment and control.
Has the accused shooter ever been subjected to military indoctrination? Has he ever had connections to military or civilian intelligence employees or assets? If so, what were the specifics?
And finally, was the accused shooter actually the shooter, or was he a patsy, a scapegoat?
I’m not downplaying the difficulty of answering these questions. But I am saying they’re all relevant.
Whereas the job of major media, in these incidents, is relaying to the public the statements of law-enforcement personnel and politicians. That’s their only job. They don’t investigate. They don’t go off on their own. They don’t know what they pretend to know. Pretending is what earns them their paychecks.
Source: Jon Rappoport
There is a new normal in America: our government may shut down, but our wars continue. Congress may not be able to pass a budget, but the U.S. military can still launch commando raids in Libya and Somalia, the Afghan War can still be prosecuted, Italy can be garrisoned by American troops (putting the “empire” back in Rome), Africa can be used as an imperial playground (as in the late nineteenth century “scramble for Africa,” but with the U.S. and China doing the scrambling this time around), and the military-industrial complex can still dominate the world’s arms trade.
In the halls of Congress and the Pentagon, it’s business as usual, if your definition of “business” is the power and profits you get from constantly preparing for and prosecuting wars around the world. “War is a racket,” General Smedley Butler famously declared in 1935, and even now it’s hard to disagree with a man who had two Congressional Medals of Honor to his credit and was intimately familiar with American imperialism.
War Is Politics, Right?
Once upon a time, as a serving officer in the U.S. Air Force, I was taught that Carl von Clausewitz had defined war as a continuation of politics by other means. This definition is, in fact, a simplification of his classic and complex book, On War, written after his experiences fighting Napoleon in the early nineteenth century.
“Forever war is forever profitable.”
The idea of war as a continuation of politics is both moderately interesting and dangerously misleading: interesting because it connects war to political processes and suggests that they should be fought for political goals; misleading because it suggests that war is essentially rational and so controllable. The fault here is not Clausewitz’s, but the American military’s for misreading and oversimplifying him.
Perhaps another “Carl” might lend a hand when it comes to helping Americans understand what war is really all about. I’m referring to Karl Marx, who admired Clausewitz, notably for his idea that combat is to war what a cash payment is to commerce. However seldom combat (or such payments) may happen, they are the culmination and so the ultimate arbiters of the process.
War, in other words, is settled by killing, a bloody transaction that echoes the exploitative exchanges of capitalism. Marx found this idea to be both suggestive and pregnant with meaning. So should we all.
Following Marx, Americans ought to think about war not just as an extreme exercise of politics, but also as a continuation of exploitative commerce by other means. Combat as commerce: there’s more in that than simple alliteration.
In the history of war, such commercial transactions took many forms, whether as territory conquered, spoils carted away, raw materials appropriated, or market share gained. Consider American wars. The War of 1812 is sometimes portrayed as a minor dust-up with Britain, involving the temporary occupation and burning of our capital, but it really was about crushing Indians on the frontier and grabbing their land. The Mexican-American War was another land grab, this time for the benefit of slaveholders. The Spanish-American War was a land grab for those seeking an American empire overseas, while World War I was for making the world “safe for democracy” — and for American business interests globally.
Even World War II, a war necessary to stop Hitler and Imperial Japan, witnessed the emergence of the U.S. as the arsenal of democracy, the world’s dominant power, and the new imperial stand-in for a bankrupt British Empire.
Korea? Vietnam? Lots of profit for the military-industrial complex and plenty of power for the Pentagon establishment. Iraq, the Middle East, current adventures in Africa? Oil, markets, natural resources, global dominance.
In societal calamities like war, there will always be winners and losers. But the clearest winners are often companies like Boeing and Dow Chemical, which provided B-52 bombers and Agent Orange, respectively, to the U.S. military in Vietnam. Such “arms merchants” — an older, more honest term than today’s “defense contractor” — don’t have to pursue the hard sell, not when war and preparations for it have become so permanently, inseparably intertwined with the American economy, foreign policy, and our nation’s identity as a rugged land of “warriors” and “heroes” (more on that in a moment).
War as Disaster Capitalism
Consider one more definition of war: not as politics or even as commerce, but as societal catastrophe. Thinking this way, we can apply Naomi Klein’s concepts of the “shock doctrine” and “disaster capitalism” to it. When such disasters occur, there are always those who seek to turn a profit.
Most Americans are, however, discouraged from thinking about war this way thanks to the power of what we call “patriotism” or, at an extreme, “superpatriotism” when it applies to us, and the significantly more negative “nationalism” or “ultra-nationalism” when it appears in other countries. During wars, we’re told to “support our troops,” to wave the flag, to put country first, to respect the patriotic ideal of selfless service and redemptive sacrifice (even if all but 1% of us are never expected to serve or sacrifice).
We’re discouraged from reflecting on the uncomfortable fact that, as “our” troops sacrifice and suffer, others in society are profiting big time. Such thoughts are considered unseemly and unpatriotic. Pay no attention to the war profiteers, who pass as perfectly respectable companies. After all, any price is worth paying (or profits worth offering up) to contain the enemy — not so long ago, the red menace, but in the twenty-first century, the murderous terrorist.
Forever war is forever profitable. Think of the Lockheed Martins of the world. In their commerce with the Pentagon, as well as the militaries of other nations, they ultimately seek cash payment for their weapons and a world in which such weaponry will be eternally needed. In the pursuit of security or victory, political leaders willingly pay their price.
Call it a Clausewitzian/Marxian feedback loop or the dialectic of Carl and Karl. It also represents the eternal marriage of combat and commerce. If it doesn’t catch all of what war is about, it should at least remind us of the degree to which war as disaster capitalism is driven by profit and power.
For a synthesis, we need only turn from Carl or Karl to Cal — President Calvin Coolidge, that is. “The business of America is business,” he declared in the Roaring Twenties. Almost a century later, the business of America is war, even if today’s presidents are too polite to mention that the business is booming.
America’s War Heroes as Commodities
Many young people today are, in fact, looking for a release from consumerism. In seeking new identities, quite a few turn to the military. And it provides. Recruits are hailed as warriors and warfighters, as heroes, and not just within the military either, but by society at large.
Yet in joining the military and being celebrated for that act, our troops paradoxically become yet another commodity, another consumable of the state. Indeed, they become consumed by war and its violence. Their compensation? To be packaged and marketed as the heroes of our militarized moment. Steven Gardiner, a cultural anthropologist and U.S. Army veteran, has written eloquently about what he calls the “heroic masochism” of militarized settings and their allure for America’s youth. Put succinctly, in seeking to escape a consumerism that has lost its meaning and find a release from dead-end jobs, many volunteers are transformed into celebrants of violence, seekers and givers of pain, a harsh reality Americans ignore as long as that violence is acted out overseas against our enemies and local populations.
Such “heroic” identities, tied so closely to violence in war, often prove poorly suited to peacetime settings. Frustration and demoralization devolve into domestic violence and suicide. In an American society with ever fewer meaningful peacetime jobs, exhibiting greater and greater polarization of wealth and opportunity, the decisions of some veterans to turn to or return to mind-numbing drugs of various sorts and soul-stirring violence is tragically predictable. That it stems from their exploitative commodification as so many heroic inflictors of violence in our name is a reality most Americans are content to forget.
You May Not Be Interested in War, but War Is Interested in You
As Russian revolutionary Leon Trotsky pithily observed, “You may not be interested in war, but war is interested in you.” If war is combat and commerce, calamity and commodity, it cannot be left to our political leaders alone — and certainly not to our generals. When it comes to war, however far from it we may seem to be, we’re all in our own ways customers and consumers. Some pay a high price. Many pay a little. A few gain a lot. Keep an eye on those few and you’ll end up with a keener appreciation of what war is actually all about.
No wonder our leaders tell us not to worry our little heads about our wars — just support those troops, go shopping, and keep waving that flag. If patriotism is famously the last refuge of the scoundrel, it’s also the first recourse of those seeking to mobilize customers for the latest bloodletting exercise in combat as commerce.
Just remember: in the grand bargain that is war, it’s their product and their profit. And that’s no bargain for America, or for that matter for the world.
Cars on the Obamacare Express jumped the track and began piling up as soon as the Healthcare.gov website went live on Oct. 1, and the expected Obamacare train wreck continues to create its carnage.
Of course, the carnage is just beginning. Obamacare is a socialist death trap of graft and corruption. It was created by lobbyists for the medical industrial complex as a way of growing its consumer base with the guarantee of benefit payments from the Federal Treasury. It’s a redistributive system that steals from the producers in order to feed the corporatocracy.
Nothing about Obamacare is healthcare. It is simply medical tyranny created under the guise of political doublespeak. It sounds great to promise free or low-cost health insurance for everyone until people begin to learn the true cost of “free” government programs.
America’s healthcare system is a profit-driven, disease-oriented death system. It is a system of conflict of interest, tainted research, greed for money, deceived and pretentious doctors and scientists, lying, cheating, invasion by the morally bankrupt marketing automatons of the drug industry, greedy power-hungry politicians, and Federal and State regulators. It is all about money generated on the sick and the dying.
I will quickly give you a valid exception, and that is if one needs trauma care. It is generally and quickly available and most of the time life-saving. But this is a very small part of medical practice in America.
The sick care industry is not only profiting from the sick and dying; it is the greatest cause of sickness and premature death. And it is a U.S. government industry. It is sponsored and financed by the U.S. government. There would not be a single hospital in the United States without Federal funny money and the insurance business.
In fact, it’s very deceptive to call Obamacare socialized healthcare as Obamacare has nothing to do with healthcare. It’s just the opposite. It’s sickness care.
The Nazis had their gas chambers and America has “medical care,” which is the most sophisticated killing machine that demented minds can create.
Americans are mentally dependent on the “medical” brainwash. When our dumbed-down people hear the trigger word “medical care,” they go blind and hyperventilate. They do not know a scam from a sham.
The great debate going on is spurious in its entirety. There is no truth to be found in it. It’s a comedy. As the paper money regime collapses, the money creators are speeding up the printing presses in a desperate ploy to transfer the wealth of the American people before it becomes worthless anyway. It is disguised warfare against the American people.
It reminds one of the last days of the Nazi regime. As the cities were reduced to rubble, German citizens were being shot for “treason.” In the last days of any regime, the process of oppression of citizens is intensified.
In the United States, stepped-up oppression is being done under the cloak of benevolency called healthcare.
In fact, there is now very high risk in going to the hospital. Besides the hundreds of thousands of drug-induced deaths (iatrogenic deaths), there are people who check into hospitals and unexpectedly die of viral pneumonia that antibiotics can’t help. Tuberculosis has returned to America, including drug-resistant strains. Drug-resistant bacteria are rampant. One in 20 hospital patients now picks up an infection he didn’t have when he arrived. Even what appears to be the old common cold is lasting for months.
“There are about 2 million people who acquire infection from the hospital each year and become sick,” said Charlottesville, Va., infectious disease expert Barry Farr, M.D. “Most don’t die, but some do.” About 100,000 die each year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Obamacare locks you into this system with no way out. Once the government is in the business of determining approved treatments and payments, alternative treatment regimens are prohibited. And failure to follow the prescribed treatment will result in fines or imprisonment. (This sort of medical tyranny has already manifested itself in the treatment of children’s ailments; see here and here for just two such examples.)
And it seems the Obamacare system permanently captures you as well. Those few who have managed to access the deeply flawed system have learned that deleting an account and the personal information entered is impossible.
And what is that information? Everything the government needs to know to confiscate your wealth from you completely in the event of noncompliance.
Everyone is forced to sign up for a system that is unavailable to them because of the failure of the Healthcare.gov website — which some computer experts believe was either designed to fail or built by a team of incompetent chimpanzees.
About 90 percent of those who tried to enroll say they were not able to get signed up. And of those, about 50,000 people who were able to get through in the system’s first 11 days, only about 1 percent have submitted enough information to be successfully enrolled, according to health industry executives.
Nationwide, there are 11.6 million people ages 18 to 34 who are uninsured, according to the Department of Health and Human Services. Obamacare is a Ponzi scheme designed to sit on the backs of the young and healthy. But they aren’t interested in it once they learn their premium costs will run in the hundreds of dollars per month, deductibles are $5,000 or more per year and the copays are outrageously high.
The lack of support from young people is ominous. “The entire Rube Goldberg apparatus depends on young, healthy people signing up to cross-subsidize more expensive patients and prevent health plans from going into a death spiral in which premiums don’t cover claims,” said The Wall Street Journal. “Good luck getting millennials to sign up when plans aren’t merely more expensive but when the exchanges malfunction, or doctors don’t accept exchange coverage because someone checked the wrong box, or any number of myriad administrative problems.”
Yet despite all this and despite the fact that a vast majority of Americans want no part of it (hence, the mandate requiring everyone to sign up under penalty of fines and forfeiture of as-yet undetermined amounts of personal property), every effort to repeal or defund Obamacare has been backed by only a handful of non-statists and opposed by the regime and the statists who are more interested in control, power, pleasing the medical cartel and sapping Americans of their wealth and health than in doing what’s right for Americans and following the Constitution.
Source: Bob Livingston | Personal Liberty Digest
Following his doomsday speech at the United Nations General Assembly on October 1—in which he warned the world that Iran’s new president should not be trusted and that Israel would attack Iran on its own unless it ends its nuclear program—Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu spent two days in New York on an anti-Rouhani media blitz. He reiterated his UN points in a half-dozen interviews with CBS’s Charlie Rose and others. He addressed the media in English, Hebrew, Spanish, and even Farsi. “Rouhani doesn’t sound like Ahmadinejad,” Netanyahu said at the UN and repeated thereafter, “but when it comes to Iran’s nuclear weapons program, the only difference between them is this: Ahmadinejad was a wolf in wolf’s clothing. Rouhani is a wolf in sheep’s clothing—a wolf who thinks he can pull the wool over the eyes of the international community.” To NBC’s Andrea Mitchell he said that supreme leader Khamenei is “the dictator of Iran” to whom Rouhani allegedly says “I can get you the completion of the nuclear program by speaking nicely to the West… What Ahmadinejad tried to do with a frown, I’ll do with a smile.”
It did not work. As Chemi Shalev of the Haaretz has noted, “Bibi’s” aides claimed that he has successfully countered Rouhani’s charm offensive, but underneath their bravado one could detect clear signs disappointment, even desperation: “The American media dutifully broadcast their interviews with Netanyahu, but did so furtively and minimialistically, as if an old friend had asked for an inconvenient favor, before switching back to the political drama of the government shutdown in Washington. Netanyahu, suddenly, was the wrong man, at the wrong time, with the wrong message.”
Netanyahu’s meeting with President Obama was brief and unexciting. It came at a time when Washington is more preoccupied with the shutdown than with Iran’s alleged ambitions. The Prime Minister was more warmly received on the Hill, where his loyalists from both parties expressed their undying support for everything he wants now, or may want in the future. Nevertheless, it would be a dangerous strategy for Netanyahu to try and use his influence with his congressional friends to sabotage the Administration’s developing détente with Iran. His previous attempts to bypass the executive in setting the U.S. Middle Eastern agenda—notably on the two-state solution and on his settlement policy—have failed, and resulted in periods of marked coolness in relations with Obama.
Netanyahu has several problems in presenting a credible policy on Iran to the world. None of them are easy to tackle, and some are impossible to resolve:
- Netanyahu will never be able to secure his maximalist demands in any negotiations, above all his insistence that all Iranian uranium enrichment facilities should be shut down and all stocks of fissile material removed from the country. In any final settlement the P5+1 group (five permanent U.N. Security Council members plus Germany) are likely to accept Iran’s insistence that it should not be prevented from the legitimate and legal use of nuclear technology for electricity generation and other peaceful purposes. He will not be able to dictate the terms of any final deal with Iran, and he will not be in the room if and when that deal is signed.
- Nobody of consequence, in the U.S. or anywhere else, believes that Israel will act on its own in attacking Iran even if the U.S. and the rest of the Security Council believe that they are making progress in nuclear talks, let alone if they reach a settlement with Iran which is not to Israel’s liking. Netanyahu’s explicit threat to do so has left the world underwhelmed because he did not sound credible.
- In recent years, while advocating U.S. military action against Iran, Netanyahu would invariably claim that the bombs were needed because economic and financial sanctions against Iran were ineffective. At the UN, however, he admitted that sanctions are hurting Iran. Apparently he changed his position in order to prepare his auxiliary line of attack: that the sanctions regime should not be relaxed, no matter what Iran’s leaders say or do. That may have seemed like a clever ploy to his advisors, but to the rest of the world it may smack of cynical opportunism at best. At worst, at a time of Israel’s growing diplomatic isolation, Netanyahu’s threats will be viewed as a heavy-handed attempt to torpedo diplomacy just as it seems to be yielding dividends.
- For years Netanyahu has claimed that former Iranian president Ahmadinejad’s words—above all his threat to wipe Israel off the map and his holocaust denial—should be taken seriously enough to prevent Iran from having any kind of nuclear program. But when Iran’s new president declares that Iran has no intention to attack Israel and when he condemns Nazi crimes against the Jews—both of which were accompanied by a chorus of disapproval at home—Netanyahu asserts that mere words have no strategic meaning.
- Netanyahu’s hard line may draw attention to the neglected fact that Israel has a nuclear arsenal, that it has not signed the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons, and that it has never granted IAEA inspectors access to its nuclear facilities. Once the key powers are satisfied that Syria has given up its chemical arsenal and Iran its nuclear ambitions, attention may be drawn to the fact that Israel will be the only country in the region left in the possession of the weapons of mass destruction.
Netanyahu’s meeting with Obama went well even though they distrust and dislike each other, but the two may be on collision course some time next year. If the P5+1 negotiations with Iran make progress and result in an agreement which the United States and other powers find acceptable but Israel does not, Netanyahu will probably try to tie the President’s hands through legislative action on the Hill. It would be a risky strategy. The Lobby’s attempt at the end of August to mobilize congressional support for Obama’s intended war on Syria was a failure. The ability of the Israeli prime minister to identify his understanding of Israel’s interests with those of the United States is not as great as before, which is good news for both Israel and America.
That NBC had doctored a 911 call for the purposes of making George Zimmerman look like a bigot was a shocking revelation. Yet cut-and-paste propaganda is a common media tactic, and I’m not sure anyone is victimized by it more than Pope Francis.
You’ve probably read the headlines. “Pope Francis urges global leaders to end ‘tyranny’ of money,” “Pope Francis’s stunning blow to conservatives,” “Pope Francis assures atheists: You don’t have to believe in God to go to heaven,” “Pope Says Church Is ‘Obsessed’ With Gays, Abortion and Birth Control”; rinse, wash and repeat. Yet these headlines range from delusion to, possibly, deception. By and large, he said, she said is not what the pope said.
Let’s start with the recent big news, the Jesuit magazine interview with Pope Francis called that “stunning blow to conservatives.” The stunned (and stunted) journalist who wrote that line, The Guardian’s Andrew Brown, used a Francis “quotation” prevalent throughout the media. To wit: “It is not necessary to talk about…abortion, gay marriage and [contraception] all the time.” Now, it’s not surprising Brown didn’t provide a link to the actual interview. Because not only is his cut-and-paste job missing an ellipsis (between “and” and “all the time”), it’s an elliptical formulation that omits 58 words — and 58 miles of meaning.
After saying he hadn’t talked about abortion, marriage and contraception much, here’s what the pope actually stated: “The teaching of the church, for that matter, is clear and I am a son of the church, but it is not necessary to talk about these issues all the time [emphasis added].” The media didn’t omit the italicized words merely for brevity’s sake. When Francis said that the teaching is “clear” and he’s a “son of the church,” he is reaffirming doctrine and his fidelity to it. He’s saying that the teachings in question are definitive, set in stone, and that he is loyal to mother Church as any good “son” is to his mother.
Ironically, the pope, whom Catholics believe is Christ’s representative on Earth, is receiving the same treatment Jesus himself did. Many liberals make their case for homosexual behavior by saying that Christ was silent on it. Of course, Jesus didn’t say anything about pedophilia, either; this doesn’t mean He would have tolerated it. Likewise, it’s as silly to think that dogma is null and void unless continually espoused as it is to assume that a law is no longer on the books just because legislators don’t talk about it constantly.
Of course, one could still find fault with Francis’s comments. While “all the time” was surely just a manner of speaking, in reality I hear far too little sermonizing at Mass about the moral teachings in question. Instead there’s much nebulous talk about “love.” And while love is wonderful, I’d point out that a good physician makes the correct diagnosis and treats what the patient has, not what he doesn’t have. There is no powerful social movement whose placards state “Down with Love!” and “Give Hate a Chance!” As far as abortion and marriage go, however, the left has sought (and largely succeeded) in changing a tried-and-true status quo, and traditionalists’ talk about these issues is simply responses commensurate with the left’s cultural-attack talk. We don’t hose people down indiscriminately; we simply try to douse as many fires as the cultural pyromaniacs light.
Having said all this, the main difference between Pope Francis and his two predecessors is one of style, emphasis and tactics, not dogma. Dogma cannot be changed.
One problem between the pope and secular world involves communication breakdown: terms and phrases have different connotations, and sometimes different meanings, to a devout Catholic than to a modernist. Consider, for example, Francis’s July remark about homosexual priests, “[W]ho am I to judge?” This was widely viewed as deviation from Catholic doctrine, but the pope averred otherwise in the Jesuit interview, explaining, “I said what the catechism says.” But what long-held Catholic doctrine did Francis’s comment reflect?
The catechism states that while homosexual behavior is gravely sinful, homosexual tendencies are not (the catechism labels them “disordered”). This is simply common sense. A person generally doesn’t ask for the feelings he has, and they often result from early childhood influences over which he has no control. His responsibility lies in whether or not he chooses to act upon those feelings.
This brings us to the rub: when the pope says “homosexual,” he thinks of a person with the tendency, but takes for granted that a priest so burdened will strive to live a celibate life. When secularists hear the word, however, they generally think of a person engaging in homosexuality. Thus, while Francis was saying he wouldn’t “judge” a person bearing the homosexual cross nobly, the secular world heard, “I won’t judge the behavior.”
This misunderstanding is easy to fathom. “Who am I to judge?” has become a code-phrase meaning, “There’s nothing wrong with homosexual acts.” But the pope is not of our culture; he’s a South American, and I suspect he didn’t understand the code-phrase and how it’s interpreted by secular Western ears.
But some “interpretations” of the pope’s words are, damnably, much farther afield. Consider the Independent’s headline: Pope Francis assures atheists: You don’t have to believe in God to go to heaven.” Not surprisingly, this paper also suddenly forgot how to use the hyperlink feature in its reportage (what the pope actually wrote).
But Francis never said “You don’t have to believe in God to go to heaven.”
In fact, he never used the word “Heaven” in what was a 2688-word letter even once.
What the pope said that the media is spinning was, “God’s mercy has no limits if you go to him with a sincere and contrite heart. The issue for those who do not believe in God is to obey their conscience.” The Independent also quotes the pope as saying, “Sin, even for those who have no faith, exists when people disobey their conscience.” Perhaps the paper has a (much) different translation from the Italian, but I find that line nowhere in the letter. Anyway, the letter is actually quite good on balance. As for insight into what Francis meant, space constraints here preclude deep theological expositions, but The Telegraph’s Tim Stanley provides a decent explanation here.
Yet The Telegraph also had its Independent-of-truth moment when publishing, “Pope Francis urges global leaders to end ‘tyranny’ of money,” which, as you could guess by now, also omits a link to the pope’s actual words. The paper writes, “He [the pope] said free-market capitalism had created a ‘tyranny’…. [That is,][u]nchecked capitalism had created ‘a new, invisible, and at times virtual, tyranny’, said the former Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio.” The reality?
Francis never used the phrase “tyranny of money” or the term “free-market capitalism.”
In fact, he never mentioned “capitalism” or the “free market” even once.
The pope’s actual theme in what in this case was a speech, was that financiers, politicians and economists should cultivate a God-centered ethics, and Francis used the word “ethics” or “ethical” eight times and “God” four times in a speech that took mere minutes to deliver. And author of The Telegraph article, Nick Squires? He used the word “ethical” just once…in passing.
He didn’t mention “God” at all.
And while he didn’t present his cut-and-paste, add-and-subtract, mix-and-match formulations as direct Francis quotations, many readers would either assume they were or, in the least, wouldn’t figure that he had “Zimmermanned” the pope. But it’s not surprising the media is reluctant to report on a God-centered ethics.
They, apparently, are sorely lacking in it themselves.
Yet there are many reasons why media distort the pope’s words. First, they’ll do anything for eyeball-grabbing headlines. Second, Catholic theology has been forged over 2000 years, is very deep, and thus doesn’t lend itself to sound-bite presentation. More significantly, it cannot be understood by sound-bite commentators with 15-second attention spans who, sadly, interpret things knee-jerk style via the prism of their own prejudices. Third and in keeping with this, liberals exist in a realm of rationalization, anyway, and thus can truly convince themselves that their feelings-derived “sense” of someone’s meaning is gospel. The fourth factor is simple.
Leftists are dishonest.
Yet even many well-meaning people don’t understand the Church. For one thing, there’s the aforementioned factor: the secular and devout Catholic worlds often speak different languages, with words and phrases holding different meanings. As for doctrine, the Church isn’t some journalist with hormone-imbalance-induced mood swings. Defined doctrine (dogma) cannot change, and new doctrines won’t be forged with reporters. What a pope says in an interview doesn’t change doctrine any more than what a president says in an interview changes American law.
But then there is a more insidious reason for the media’s papal spin. Not only do the militant secularists assume the Church will eventually “get with the times” and embrace its agenda (it feels so obviously correct, you see), but they know if they can break the Catholic Church — if they can get its imprimatur — cultural domination is theirs. And, hey, if you can’t break it, fake it. With image being “reality,” making the low-info masses believe the Church has “seen the light” may be sufficiently demoralizing.
The last significant factor is one I’d like my Christian brethren to consider very, very seriously. By creating the illusion that the Church is abandoning certain unchanging moral principles, the media can widen the rift between the Church and some traditionalist Protestants. Beware the divide-and-conquer devils among us.
Having said all this, Pope Francis certainly gives the media much grist for the mill. One issue is his gregariousness — he said he loves being around people — and he talks to anyone and everyone about anything and everything. This is dangerous for any public figure. Moreover, while the pope is orthodox, and in that sense neither liberal nor conservative, Catholic doctrine doesn’t address every issue and all its nuance. And given that Francis’s instincts are, it seems to me, somewhat modernistic, I’m not confident in his pronouncements on matters beyond doctrine (or in his sense of priority). I think his grasp of economics is especially suspect.
And while the pope’s tactic of stressing Christ’s love and salvation message to the exclusion of certain moral doctrines is well-intended, I don’t believe it will work. The militant secularists aren’t interested in conciliation or compromise, but in the complete and utter destruction of Christianity. They take no prisoners.
So say your prayers; they’re needed now more than ever. And I will say that Pope Francis may inspire me to expand my prayer life. For the first time ever I may start praying for laryngitis.
Millions around the world today are hoping the US federal government shuts down at midnight on Monday. Many have thoughts of wars and occupations ending in their regions… but, sadly, this is not part of the “services” that will be cut during a shutdown.
In fact, not only will the Department of Offense continue on as usual but so will all the tyrannical agencies such as the DEA, IRS, ATF, CIA and countless other alphabet soup agencies of oppression.
What will “shut down”? According to CNN these are the Top 10 Ways A Government Shutdown Would Affect Your Daily Life:
1. I’m Proud To Be An American. According to CNN, “the biggest hit would be to the collective psyche. America is the largest economy in the world and a beacon for how democracy ought to work”. It is sad if even one person in the US has their “psyche” hurt because of this! It is sad how many people in the US now consider their country/region and the government that rules it as being one in the same. Not to mention that the US was never designed to be a democracy… it was set-up as a Republic and all the founding fathers spoke very warily against any sort of democracy. Democracy, fundamentally, is mob rule and anti-freedom. It is the tyranny of the majority against the minority.
2. Anything Dirty or Dingy or Dusty. It is unbelievable that this #2 reason from CNN warns people of how dramatically their lives will be affected if the federal government shuts down (and this after #1 was that it might hurt their “psyche”). It goes on to say that the only region in the entire country where trash pickup may stop in the event of a shutdown is in Washington, District of Criminals. Hardly a national disaster! And, not to mention, that if that really were the case, free market private enterprise would spring up, like in Detroit, and people would actually have good options for waste disposal rather than a communist style, centrally planned garbage pickup.
3. Money. According to CNN, if you need a loan from the government, you won’t be able to get it in event of a shut down. Good! If you are such a credit risk that no one in private enterprise will lend you money then, definitely, the government shouldn’t lend you the money they stole from the innocent victims in their tax farm! They also mention that Socialist InSecurity (SS) cheques may stop coming. This is often one of the first things the government tries to scare people with, as Barack Obama did in 2011, during the last event of this type. Why? Because old people vote in much greater numbers than younger people and scaring them with threats of withheld money works. What should really scare them is that both the US government and its SS Ponzi scheme is bankrupt.
4. Ammunition. According to CNN, “A shutdown would affect the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. Translation: That gun permit you wanted processed wouldn’t happen anytime soon”. The ATF shutting down would be a wonderful thing. So sad in the “land of the free” that one of the biggest threats to a government shutdown is that you may not get permission from the government to have a gun!
5. Drugs. According to CNN, “The Republicans want to defund Obamacare in exchange for funding the government. But the health care act at the center of this storm would continue its implementation process during a shutdown. That’s because its funds aren’t dependent on the congressional budget process”. CNN is really reaching to find 10 ways this shut down will affect people when they explicitly state that #5 won’t affect drugs or Obamacare!
6. The Mail. CNN is really running out of ideas now that they have to bring up the post office, that bankrupt, antiquated, 1800s style of delivering information that the internet, FedEx and UPS rendered it obsolete decades ago. Oh, but here CNN again let’s us know that even that embarrassing anachronism won’t actually shut down! “You know that whole ‘Neither snow, nor rain, nor heat, nor gloom of night’ thing? Apparently, the U.S. Postal Service works through shutdowns as well.”
7. The Roads! Muh Roads! For the third time in a row CNN says this will be unaffected (what was the point of this list again?). They pitch this one as, “If you drive a car, I’ll tax the street” as though to lead you into thinking the roads will close without the federal government, but then they don’t mention roads again. Here’s what they had to say on it, “You may be thinking, ‘No functioning government, no need to pay taxes.’ Think again. The Man would continue to collect taxes. U.S. bonds would still be issued. And other essential banking functions would go on”. So, here is another one that won’t affect you, unfortunately. You still have to pay extortion to the federal government, even if they are “shut down”.
8. The Military. CNN says, “The good news (for you) is that the men and women in uniform would continue to keep you safe. “… okay, that’s four in a row that won’t affect people on a list of 10 ways the shut down will affect you! Instead it is the usual propaganda trying to make people feel like the US military “protects” Americans.
9. Celebrate! Seriously, this is #9 on the list. Here’s what they said, “Don’t come to work if you’re a federal employee. You’re on furlough. (Offer not valid for workers in ‘critical services,’ such as air traffic controllers, hazardous waste handlers and food inspectors.) Do take some time to celebrate. In previous shutdowns, everyone who stayed home was paid retroactively after peace returned to Washington”. So, the shutdown is a good thing because millions of federal government employees get a free vacation that will be paid by Americans who will be paying for them to do nothing.
10. National Parks. According to CNN, “Need to get away? Well, you can’t. At least not to national parks. Or to national zoos. Or to national museums. They’d all be closed. That’s 368 National Park Service sites closed, millions of visitors turned away. Were you thinking more along the lines of a trip to France? If you don’t already have a passport, you might have to bid that adieu — you might not get your blue book in time. The last time the government threw a hissy fit, 200,000 applications for passports went unprocessed. Tourism and airline revenues reeled”. So, some parks may be shuttered and your permission to travel may be withheld.
That’s it? That’s the best that CNN can come up with on how a potential government shutdown will affect people? Your psyche may get hurt (if you had a delusional belief in the US government being the same as yourself); there may not be garbage collection in Washington, Den of Criminals; you won’t be able to get a federal loan and you may not get permission from the government to have a gun or travel.
And this is what has the mainstream media talking about non-stop?
Of course, if the Federal Reserve did not print the money (QE2Infinity) to keep the US government going with over a $1 trillion deficit per year, 90% plus of what the government does would come to an immediate halt. Then there would be countless very serious things that would “affect your life”. Anyone depending on food stamps (which is now over 50 million people), anyone depending on SS to survive would definitely be affected as there’d be no money to pay them. And, not to mention, every bank in the US would be insolvent and all depositor’s money would be lost as the FDIC is also bankrupt.
But, we aren’t betting on that ever happening. This is democracy, after all. And that means keeping the debts and new money flowing until the economic system collapses as the printing of money causes the eventual demise of the dollar and The End Of The Monetary System As We Know It (TEOTMSAWKI).
This system is now down to two options: massive debt default or massive inflation and neither is particularly good for anyone living in the US. Every major government or empire in history when faced with those two options chose to continue printing money until the currency collapsed.
In either case, what is happening today is nothing compared to what is going to happen. Use this time to prepare and get your assets, and if you can, even your own ass outside of what will be ground zero for this economic collapse, the US.
We talk about all the ways to do that at the TDV newsletter including things like putting your IRA into a self-directed IRA and getting the assets internationalized (into precious metals offshore – like we talk about in Getting Your Gold Out Of Dodge – and foreign real estate like Galt’s Gulch in Chile), getting offshore bank accounts and set-up with an offshore corporation for your business endeavors (TDV Offshore), getting a foreign residency or passport (TDV Passports) and, if you have assets over $1 million, using TDV Wealth Management to get the assets safely outside of the blast radius.
What is going on in Washington, DC, today could mean postponing a trip to Yellowstone national park or having delayed garbage pickup in DC itself. What is coming in the next few months and years has the potential to destroy all your assets and leave you devoid of any way of earning income as the economy is totally destroyed by a currency collapse.
The best case scenario for the populace of the US in the long run is for a complete shutdown of the US federal government… But, that collapse is going to be messy and a lot of people are going to get hurt in the short term during that collapse.
Anarcho-Capitalist. Libertarian. Freedom fighter against mankind’s two biggest enemies, the State and the Central Banks. Jeff Berwick is the founder of The Dollar Vigilante, CEO of TDV Media & Services and host of the popular video podcast, Anarchast. Jeff is a prominent speaker at many of the world’s freedom, investment and gold conferences as well as regularly in the media including CNBC, CNN and Fox Business.
Source: Jeff Berwick | The Dollar Vigilante
The NBC star tells his viewers that Iranian leaders are ‘suddenly claiming they don’t want nuclear weapons’, even though they’ve been saying it for years…
There is ample reason for skepticism that anything substantial will change in Iran-US relations, beginning with the fact that numerous US political and media figures are vested in the narrative that Iran is an evil threat whose desire for a peaceful resolution must not be trusted (and some hard-line factions in Iran are similarly vested in ongoing conflict). Whatever one’s views are on the prospects for improving relations, the first direct communications in more than 30 years between the leaders of those two countries is a historically significant event.
Here is what NBC News anchor Brian Williams told his viewers about this event when leading off his broadcast last night, with a particularly mocking and cynical tone used for the bolded words:
This is all part of a new leadership effort by Iran - suddenly claiming they don’t want nuclear weapons! ; what they want is talks and transparency and good will. And while that would be enough to define a whole new era, skepticism is high and there’s a good reason for it.”
Yes, Iran’s claim that they don’t want nuclear weapons sure is “sudden” – if you pretend that virtually everything that they’ve said on that question for the past ten years does not exist. Here, for instance, is previous Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad in an August 13, 2011, interview:
“Q: ‘Are you saying that at some point in the future you may want to acquire a nuclear deterrent, a nuclear weapon?’
“Ahmadinejad: ‘Never, never. We do not want nuclear weapons. We do not seek nuclear weapons. This is an inhumane weapon. Because of our beliefs we are against that.
“Firstly, our religion says it is prohibited. We are a religious people. Secondly, nuclear weapons have no capability today. If any country tries to build a nuclear bomb, they in fact waste their money and resources and they create great danger for themselves. . . .
“Nuclear weapons are the weapons of the previous century. This century is the century of knowledge and thinking, the century of human beings, the century of culture and logic. . . . Our goal in the country and the goal of our people is peace for all. Nuclear energy for all, and nuclear weapons for none. This is our goal.
“All nuclear activities in Iran are monitored by the IAEA. There have been no documents against Iran from the agency. It’s just a claim by the US that we are after nuclear weapons. But they have no evidence that Iran is diverting resources to that purpose.”
In fact, the country’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, issued a 2005 religious edict banning the pursuit of nuclear weapons, and in January of this year, Iranian official Ramin Mehmanparast declared: “There is nothing higher than the exalted supreme leader’s fatwa to define the framework for our activities in the nuclear field.” He added: “We are the first country to call for a Middle East free of nuclear weapons. When the highest jurist and authority in the country’s leadership issues a fatwa, this will be binding for all of us to follow. So, this fatwa will be our top agenda.”
The following month, Khamenei himself said: “We believe that nuclear weapons must be eliminated. We don’t want to build atomic weapons.” The New York Times noted that “American officials say they believe that Ayatollah Khamenei exercises full control over Iran’s nuclear program.”
These are identical to the statements top Iranian officials have been making for years. In 2012, Khamenei ”insisted his country was not seeking nuclear weapons, claiming that ‘holding these arms is a sin as well as useless, harmful and dangerous.’” The following month, Iran’s top leader gave what Professor Juan Cole described at the time as “a major foreign policy speech” and said:
The Iranian nation has never pursued and will never pursue nuclear weapons. There is no doubt that the decision makers in the countries opposing us know well that Iran is not after nuclear weapons because the Islamic Republic, logically, religiously and theoretically, considers the possession of nuclear weapons a grave sin and believes the proliferation of such weapons is senseless, destructive and dangerous.”
Can that be any more absolute? Iran’s top leadership has been making similarly unambiguous statements for almost a full decade, even taking out a full page ad in the New York Times in 2005 to counter the growing clamor in the US for a military attack by proclaiming that Iran had no desire for nuclear weapons, was not pursuing them, and wanted transparency, accountability and peace – exactly what Brian Williams told his viewers last night was a “sudden” and newfound claim.
Obviously, the fact that Iran claims it does not want nuclear weapons is not proof that it is not seeking them or will not seek them at some point in the future; all government statements should be subjected to skepticism (and one can only dream of the day when US media stars subject the statements of their own government to the same skepticism accorded to those of leaders of non-allied countries). But what is true is that US intelligence agencies have repeatedly though secretly concluded that they do not believe that Iran is building a nuclear weapon, and even top Israeli military officials have expressed serious doubts that Iran is building, or will build, a nuclear weapon.
But whether Iran is sincere is an entirely separate question from the one about which Williams radically misled his viewers last night. While Iran’s actual intentions regarding nuclear weapons may be debatable, the fact that they have repeatedly and over the course of many years emphatically disclaimed any interest in acquiring nuclear weapons is not debatable. It is indisputable fact that they have done exactly that. There is nothing new or “sudden” about this claim.
To the contrary, Iran has been trying to make Americans hear for years that they have no interest in nuclear weapons. Indeed, they have repeatedly made clear that they have not only banned such weapons but favor region-wide nuclear disarmament, including of Israel’s vast nuclear arsenal, which actually exists. It is Israel, not Iran, which has steadfastly refused to allow inspections of its nuclear arsenal (despite UN demands they do so) or to join the NPT or other conventions designed to monitor and regulate nuclear weapons.
But these facts have been excluded almost entirely from the dominant US media narrative for years. The fact that Iran, at its highest leadership levels, has repeatedly and unequivocally disavowed any interest in nuclear weapons is something that most Americans simply don’t know, because the country’s media stars have barely ever mentioned it. Brian Williams himself was either ignorant of this history, or chose to pretend last night that it did not happen when framing this historic event for his viewers.
Whichever of those two options is true, NBC News feels free to spout such plainly false propaganda – “suddenly claiming they don’t want nuclear weapons!” – because they know they and fellow large media outlets have done such an effective job in keeping their viewers ignorant of these facts. They thus believe that they can sow doubts about Iran’s intentions with little danger that their deceit will be discovered. Many NBC News viewers have likely never heard before that Iran has emphatically claimed not to want nuclear weapons and have even formally banned them, and thus are easily misled into believing Williams when he tells them that these current claims represent some “sudden”, inexplicable, and bizarre reversal that are not to be trusted.
Source: The Guardian
Fed chairman Ben Bernanke shocked the world on Wednesday when he announced there would be no change in the Fed’s $85 billion-per-month asset purchase program dubbed QE. The announcement sparked a buying frenzy on Wall Street where all three major indices shot to record highs. The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) climbed 146 points to 15,676 while the S & P 500 logged another 38 points to 1,725 on the day. Bonds and gold also rallied big on the news with the yield on the benchmark 10-year US Treasury dipping sharply to 2.69 percent (from 2.85 percent the day before) while gold rose more than 4.1 percent to $1,364. The US dollar was hammered savagely on the news, dropping to a seven-month low against a basket of major currencies. According to Reuters, the buck “saw its biggest one-day slide in more than two months” and “has fallen to levels not seen since well before Fed Chief Ben Bernanke first floated the idea of reducing the stimulus in May.”
Bernanke attempted to justify his reversal (some are calling it a “head fake”) on continuing weakness in the economy, particularly high unemployment and tightening in the financial markets. He also implied he was worried about the possibility of a government shutdown and the impact that would have on the anemic recovery.
While Bernanke presented a rational defense for his pet program, he was not convincing. The truth is, the Princeton professor is out on a limb and doesn’t know how to get down. That’s why he didn’t trim his bond buying by even a measly $5 billion per month, because he’s afraid the announcement would trigger a selloff that would unravel his $2.8 trillion reflation effort. So he decided to stand pat and do nothing.
But standing pat is not a long-term option, eventually the Fed will have to end the program and wind down its balance sheet. Investors know this, which is why Thursday’s giddiness quickly morphed into somber reflection and head scratching on Friday. Everyone wants to know “what’s next”, especially since QE’s impact is diminishing, financial markets are getting frothy, and improvements in the economy are marginal at best. Can the Fed really inflate its balance sheet by another 1 or $2 trillion hoping that the economy picks up in the meantime, or will Bernanke simply call it quits and let the chips fall where they may? Who really knows? This is the problem with unconventional policies; it’s impossible to predict the downside risks because they’re, well, unconventional, and haven’t been thoroughly tested before.
In the case of QE, we can see now that Bernanke forged ahead without developing a coherent exit strategy. That’s a big no-no; you never want to paint yourself into a corner especially when trillions of dollars and the stability of the financial system are at stake. But that’s where Bernanke finds himself today four years after embarking on a policy path that has boosted corporate profits to all-time highs, widened income inequality to levels not seen since the Gilded Age, and pushed Dow Jones Industrial Average up by 146% since its March 2009 low.
And that’s what made QE such an irresistible policy, because the upside rewards were so great. QE created a vehicle for transferring incalculable wealth to the investor class while concealing its real purpose behind public relations blather about lowering unemployment and strengthening the recovery.
As we have pointed out before in this column, QE has no effect on unemployment. The swapping of Treasuries for bank reserves does not create a transmission mechanism for increasing demand that leads to additional hiring. As Lee Adler of the Wall Street Examiner says:
“Job growth has not accelerated as a response to the flood of money printing…The growth rates were actually stronger before the Fed started pumping money into the economy in November when it settled its first MBS purchases in QE3…Money printing works to inflate asset prices, but it does nothing to stimulate job growth…
House prices and stock prices have inflated, thanks to too many dollars chasing too few assets. But job growth has been slow–steady, but slow, growing at slightly above the rate of population growth…..” (“Here’s How BLS Data Proves QE Has Had Zero Effect As Jobs Growth Plods Along”, Wall Street Examiner)
QE does not lower long-term interest rates either, in fact, long-term rates have edged higher during QE1, QE2 and now QE3. (Presently, rates are a full percentage point above what they were when the program was first announced on 13 September 2012) Similarly, rates should fall again when Bernanke finally settles on an exit strategy and stock holders pile back into Treasuries acknowledging the feeble state of the economy. Long-term yields will fall because the demand for funds remains weak. When the demand for money is weak, the price of money decreases which means that rates fall. It’s another sign that we are in a Depression. Now check this out from Reuters:
“Since the bottom of the recession just over four years ago, commercial bank loans and leases have grown 4.0 percent, one of the weakest post-recession recoveries in terms of borrowing since the 1960s, according to Paul Kasriel, the former chief economist of Northern Trust Company. For comparison, over the same period after the July 1990-March 1991 recession, loans and leases grew over four times faster…..” (“Time to taper? Not if you look at bank loans”, Reuters)
Once again, credit expansion is weak, because the economy is still on the ropes.
Consumers and households aren’t borrowing because they are still deleveraging from the big bust of ’08 that wiped out their home equity and a good part of their retirement savings. They’re not borrowing because their wages have stagnated and their income is falling. Also, they’re not borrowing because they’ve lost confidence in the institutions which they used to think were governed by regulations and the rule of law. They know now that that’s not how things work, so they have become more cautious in their spending.
QE doesn’t even increase inflation which is why the Fed is still unable to hit its target rate of 2 percent. The fact that inflation has stayed so low (The Consumer Price Index was up just 0.1% in August) while stock prices have more than doubled at the same time, proves that Bernanke’s nearly $3 trillion in liquidity has not “trickled down” to the real economy at all. The injections have merely boosted profits on inflated asset prices for financial parasites and speculators.
Even hedge fund managers like Duquesne Capital’s Stanley Druckenmiller are now willing to admit that QE is a farce. Here’s what Druckenmiller said in an interview with CNBC following Bernanke’s announcement on Wednesday:
“This is fantastic for every rich person. This is the biggest redistribution of wealth from the middle class and the poor to the rich ever.”
Indeed, while the dwindling middle class faces deeper budget cuts and tattered safety net programs, the rich have never had it so good. And much of the credit goes to Ben Bernanke and his bond buying program, QE.
As economist Anthony Randazzo of the Reason Foundation wrote last year QE “is fundamentally a regressive redistribution program that has been boosting wealth for those already engaged in the financial sector or those who already own homes, but passing little along to the rest of the economy. It is a primary driver of income inequality.” (“Druckenmiller: Fed robbing poor to pay rich”, CNBC)
“A really efficient totalitarian state would be one in which the all-powerful executive of political bosses and their army of managers control a population of slaves who do not have to be coerced, because they love their servitude. To make them love it is the task assigned, in present-day totalitarian states, to ministries of propaganda, newspaper editors and schoolteachers . . . . The greatest triumphs of propaganda have been accomplished, not by doing something, but by refraining from doing. Great is truth, but still greater, from a practical point of view, is silence about truth.” ~ Aldous Huxley
Hello, welcome, come on in. Please find a seat. I’m excited to be here with you today; we will take a look at how public opinion is so easily molded by promoters of the state. Many of us use the word “propaganda” a lot and it’s helpful to understand some basics about what propaganda is and how it is used. Messages released through traditional media organs can now be more effectively challenged directly by interested persons from outside the media priesthood, thanks to the Internet. Until we do this more effectively there will continue to be a trend of hyperactivity towards the police state at home and abroad and the serial-warring will continue. So, here we are; let’s get to it.
The word “propaganda” is often used when trying to explain how the state has been able to maintain such a powerful stranglehold over the collective imagination. Propaganda walks the fine line between what is known and what is purposely hidden while appealing to base emotions of fear and loyalty. Americans have been conditioned to react to this word by associating it with words like Nazi, Fascist, Communist and Terrorist. Basically, propaganda is what Bad Guys do, not Good Guys. Why would Good Guys do anything but tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth?
You see, Good Guys don’t control the media and good old capitalist media hacks are just giving the people what they want. Right? So, when you say “propaganda,” many people will immediately think that there is no way “our professional journalists” and “our politicians” could possibly do anything so awful to the good people of the United States of America as to inseminate the seed of propaganda into the Red, White and Blue body politic. No sir-ree, only conspiracy theorists believe stuff like that. Only Bad Guys do that and “we,” by definition, are the Good Guys. Now back to reality.
The traditional media machine is sold as being a necessary social institution, completely outside of the state (except for licenses – but don’t mind them), that wields a mighty pen with righteous indignation at political scandals and as giving The People a “voice.” The Third Rail of politics is used to “keep them honest” or “keep their feet to the fire,” for noble purposes, of course, like, say Social Security, Health Care, the Drug War or bombing foreigners. Because these trained and certified journalists had to work their way up the corporate ladder, honing their integrity, sense of honesty and desire to speak truth to power! But, gasp, people today look to the Internet and read ideas written by people who didn’t study in the media education mills or learn to kiss the right spots on the behinds of the right people! The self-serving glorification of mainstream media persons can only be surpassed by politicians themselves. The good news is that liberty has a golden opportunity today because this monopoly on the communication of ideas to the masses controlled by the melded interests of the state and big corporations has been disrupted by new technology.
The manipulation of messages to promote favorable outcomes for a messenger when interpreted by those receiving the message is as old as the first handshake. But how that message is delivered has changed profoundly a few notable times, including the most recent iteration over the past 150 or so years. The written word, developed thousands of years ago, changed communication with the masses from a very personal event with lots of shouting to a non-personal event that put the focus of thought onto the words themselves. It changed everything in society, some good and some not so good. The elite always have used their influence to promote conditions that ensure and/or expand their positions and advantages, often at the expense of the common man. This is not new; however, it has become more complex over the ages.
When the printing press came along in the Middle Ages, it allowed for many copies of written ideas to be distributed simultaneously; this changed how society organized again. The world gets smaller with each advance in communication technology. The most recent step with computers is a continuation of the electronic communications revolution started in the mid to late-1800s. The inventions of telegraph, telephone, radio and television communications made distances literally disappear for people spreading ideas far and wide. The computer has combined all of these technologies into one platform. Now there is a race between liberty and the state seeking to squelch the freedom of ideas in society with laws, regulations, licenses and official messages crowding out the truth.
The term propaganda has its roots in the writings of the Medieval Catholic Church priests wishing to propagate their faith to wider audiences using the new technology: the printing press. Machiavelli wrote a popular book for monarchists that incorporated some age-old theocratic tactics and strategies for modern (at the time) use. Hitler is often given credit for the modern resurgence of propaganda with his use of rituals, including nighttime rallies, fire, symbolism, loudspeakers, mass printing of pamphlets, film distribution, and radio transmissions as well as his autobiographical best-selling book Mein Kampf. But it is Edward Bernays, the nephew of Sigmund Freud and the man known as the “father of public relations” in the United States that deserves the real credit for modern propaganda. I don’t have the time today to go into a detailed history, so please do a search for Edward Bernays for a little interesting homework on the man who inspired the use of modern propaganda.
I want to spend the rest of our limited time looking at a recent article in the mainstream media as a case study in how crude propaganda is passed off of as serious journalism. It goes on everyday in every country, hidden in plain sight. Lies implying the “why” mixed-in with the hard, cold facts of who, what, where and when told by messengers posturing as journalists simply reporting impartial facts to We the People; their agendas hidden behind the façade of good intentions and given legitimacy by official blessings. These statist scribes are the perpetrators of never-ending war as they advertise a continuum of ridiculous propaganda phrases like “Making the World Safe for Democracy,” “World’s Policeman” and “War on Terror.”
First and foremost, propaganda must maintain the veil of legitimacy by speaking with authority. Power (of Authority) is to be reckoned with is the theme of all primary communications. Further, the faithful must always kneel to the powerful or society will fall apart is the subtext to all statist propaganda. Authority must be seen as the savior of society, so the people will ignore the universal faults of the state’s all too human agents. A good example of this in the run-up to the “strike” on Syria using “precision bombing” is the recent piece by Chuck Todd, NBC News Chief White House Correspondent called “The White House Walk-and-Talk That Changed Obama’s Mind on Syria.” I didn’t choose this example because it is exceptional, quite the contrary, it is all too typical and you have probably read countless versions of the same message in all of the mainstream media organs.
First, a picture is inserted showing the powerful, wise leaders in deep thought as they weigh the fate of the world on the scales of justice. This helps to establish the authority of the words that follow. Then it’s simply the Hegelian Dialectic writ large. Party A’s political agenda (thesis) is reported and discussed along with the opposing political agenda of Party B (anti-thesis). Then what results is not the clear triumph of either argument, it is the advancement to a “superior” argument C (synthesis). Position C was the elite objective all along and now the process starts over again. This is how each step on the path to perpetual war is so seamless no matter who occupies the chairs at the table of authority. Both sides are allowed occasional meaningless victories to shore up their base and stay in the game, but true victory is ever elusive and defeat always on the horizon. This is the futile system of organizing society we have inherited and glorify; a system based on lies and obfuscation to ensure elite control of the debate. We can do better.
Here is the link to the whole article published on August 31, 2013 at NBCNews.com.
Here is the picture of the official deciders provided by official photographers and released by official spokespersons with caption, by-line and intro:
President Barack Obama meets with his national security advisers in the White House Situation Room on Saturday to discuss strategy in Syria. Chief of Staff Denis McDonough is fourth from right.
By Chuck Todd, NBC News Chief White House Correspondent
A stroll around the White House grounds with his top adviser on Friday evening changed President Barack Obama’s mind about getting Congress to sign off on a military strike in Syria, senior White House officials told NBC News.
Obama had been leaning toward attacking Syria without a congressional vote for the past week, the officials said. Obama was convinced he had the evidence to back up a strike and as a result dispatched Secretary of State John Kerry to make a passionate case for U.S. action. But only hours after Kerry called Syrian President Bashar al-Assad “a thug and a murderer” and accused his regime of using chemical weapons to kill 1,429 people, Obama changed his mind as he walked across the South Lawn with Chief of Staff Denis McDonough, the officials said.
NBC’s Chuck Todd says up front these powerful wise men met to “discuss strategy in Syria,” but it is really to discuss strategy for how to get away with bombing Syria. The strategy of bombing Syria is de facto assumed from the start: the leader of the little state on the other side of the world is “a thug and a murderer,” so therefore, the leader of the big state must bomb the people of the little state until they overthrow their leader. Isn’t that the definition of terrorism? State murder is referred to as a strategy, while independent murder is terrorism.
Todd then describes the political process for seeking congressional authorization for a strike on Syria, and says that the president’s decision to wait on Congress is a departure from 30 years of strengthening executive branch power. Thus, Our Fearless Leader is not afraid to go his own way to do the right thing and is a Man of the People.
Obama’s National Security Council had believed since last weekend that requiring a vote was not even on the table and that “consultation” in the form of congressional briefings and behind-the-scenes conversation was all that would be needed before a strike. One senior official noted that no key leaders in Congress had specifically requested a vote on military intervention.
Officials said that after the president met with national security advisers on Aug. 24, they determined the evidence showed Syria’s Assad regime had used chemical weapons in an attack earlier this month. At that time, the president indicated he was leaning toward a strike.
Note the use of institutional words describing mere mortal men to give these deciders the anointing of authority to “strike” at the enemy. These experts “determined the evidence” does indeed support their agenda, as if it could have been any other way. Our Fearless Leader was only “leaning toward a strike.”
But a growing number of Congressional members were beginning to question the administration’s strategy by the end of the week. And an NBC News poll released Friday morning showed that nearly 80 percent of Americans agreed that the president should seek approval in advance of taking military action.
Ah, so the legitimacy of initiating violence and raining bombs upon foreign peoples who are not a threat to this politician’s constituency is undermined by his constituency opposing his attack. Our Allies seem to be having the same problem; this is nasty business in a purported democracy, but just a speed bump for the propagandist to navigate. Note that the article doesn’t say that Congress questioned the President’s strategy of bombing Syria, just his strategy of how to accomplish this already determined goal by selling that agenda.
While Obama’s advisers argued Friday night in private that the humiliating defeat for Cameron starkly illustrated the risks of asking for congressional input, the president responded that the vote in Parliament demonstrated exactly why he should seek a vote on this side of the Atlantic, senior officials told NBC News.
And, the president insisted, seeking legislative backing was the approach most consistent with his philosophy. While debate within the administration continued into late Friday, by Saturday morning the senior advisers acquiesced.
President Obama says the nation should and will take action against the Syrian government, but not without congressional approval.
So President Obama has already made up his mind to bomb Syria, but he wants Congress to publicly back his decision so that when the action goes bad, he can spread the blame around. Congress, on the other hand, wants Obama to order the missile attack on Syria, but is afraid of the voters and doesn’t want to go on record endorsing it. It’s all “legal,” you know, for the emperor to bomb whoever he wants whenever he wants, but it would just be more “consistent with his philosophy” if he had some public support. This entire session was over the timing of the attack with the major concern being getting re-elected, not doing the right thing.
The president also noted, “while I believe I have the authority to carry out this military action without specific congressional authorization, I know that the country will be stronger if we take this course, and our actions will be even more effective.”
White House aides said they are fairly confident that Congress will grant them the authority to launch a strike, although they maintain that Obama would be acting within his constitutional authority even if Congress rejects the authorization and Obama orders military intervention.
There’s an upside to that cooling-off period too, aides said. The delay gives Obama time to make his case to Congress and to keep pushing for international support.
This is the purpose of the article: to “make the case” for a strike. Notice again how the article is careful not to frame the decision as being one between attacking and not attacking Syria, but of how to sell a decision that has already been made. The only question is timing. The rest of the article is pure hypocrisy and emotional appeals seeking to give the impression that killing Syrians is the moral thing to do. Pure theater of the absurd promulgated by a willing hack posing as a “journalist.”
Now, is there some apparatchik sitting in a US Ministry of Propaganda giving orders to NBC newsmen or any other mainstream media hacks about what to write and publish? No, there doesn’t have to be, which is worse, because dribble like the above article is seen as “independent” and “just reporting the news.” And it is well written for accomplishing its purpose. However, does it even hint that there is a case for non-intervention? No. Does it ever mention that the “rebels” being supported by Obama and his minions are “thugs and murderers”? No. Does it say that evidence has been provided indicating that the surrogate terrorists seeking to overthrow the Syrian leader have used chemical weapons, originally started the conflict and are mostly from other Arab countries allied with the US? Of course not, because that does not promote the official agenda.
The fact that this attack has not yet occurred is testament to the power of the Internet and how it affects public opinion. Even just ten years ago, the emperor could send out some trumped up evidence (e.g. yellow cake purchases) against the hated dictator-of-the-month who stopped being useful to their CIA handlers and these lap dog journalists would fight over who could exaggerate the official propaganda the most. Today it is common knowledge that the US government and its surrogates have been backing “thugs and murderers” in Syria and that they have not been successful. Since these agents of death and mayhem are failing at their assignment to overthrow the Syrian dictator, the US government felt compelled to escalate the killing by becoming directly involved.
Ten years ago, the missiles would already be raining down on the water, sewer and electric plants of Syria in “precision strikes,” causing even greater human misery. You see, these brilliant strategic thinkers believe that the way to “save” people from their dictators is to destroy their society and its infrastructure, thus starving the people that aren’t directly killed by missiles and bombs. This then necessitates an occupation with “boots-on-the-ground” (that will be denied will ever happen right up to the time they “must” be sent in) to help them partially rebuild what was destroyed, also to be paid for by US taxpayers. And, of course, this requires giant embassies and military bases to be built by government contractors around the country. How long this game plan can be delayed is hard to foresee, but I doubt that it can be avoided for long, given the sociopathic powers that be. Still, this delay reveals that the elite recognize their grip on popular opinion is waning.
In the interests of full disclosure, it should be noted here that President Obama really didn’t make this decision himself, as it was made years ago by his superiors in the so-called military-industrial-complex. Obama is just the current Puppet-in-Chief trying to sell more wars to the American public. Just listen to this short excerpt from an interview of General Clark. Here is the main point:
GEN. WESLEY CLARK: …I knew why, because I had been through the Pentagon right after 9/11. About ten days after 9/11, I went through the Pentagon and I saw Secretary Rumsfeld and Deputy Secretary Wolfowitz. I went downstairs just to say hello to some of the people on the Joint Staff who used to work for me, and one of the generals called me in. He said, “Sir, you’ve got to come in and talk to me a second.” I said, “Well, you’re too busy.” He said, “No, no.” He says, “We’ve made the decision we’re going to war with Iraq.” This was on or about the 20th of September. I said, “We’re going to war with Iraq? Why?” He said, “I don’t know.” He said, “I guess they don’t know what else to do.” So I said, “Well, did they find some information connecting Saddam to al-Qaeda?” He said, “No, no.” He says, “There’s nothing new that way. They just made the decision to go to war with Iraq.” He said, “I guess it’s like we don’t know what to do about terrorists, but we’ve got a good military and we can take down governments.” And he said, “I guess if the only tool you have is a hammer, every problem has to look like a nail.”
So I came back to see him a few weeks later, and by that time we were bombing in Afghanistan. I said, “Are we still going to war with Iraq?” And he said, “Oh, it’s worse than that.” He reached over on his desk. He picked up a piece of paper. And he said, “I just got this down from upstairs” — meaning the Secretary of Defense’s office — “today.” And he said, “This is a memo that describes how we’re going to take out seven countries in five years, starting with Iraq, and then Syria, Lebanon, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and, finishing off, Iran.” I said, “Is it classified?” He said, “Yes, sir.” I said, “Well, don’t show it to me.” And I saw him a year or so ago, and I said, “You remember that?” He said, “Sir, I didn’t show you that memo! I didn’t show it to you!”
Well, there you go. That’s all we have time for today and I’m afraid I’ve already gone long. I hope that when you read and listen to “the news” or “official statements” that you remember to use your propaganda filter and take it with a grain of salt. Challenge official lies whenever and however you can. And when these shameless liars start waving the flag to inspire you to give up more treasure and blood for big corporations and their political machines, don’t fall for it. Remember, real Good Guys don’t need propaganda if they are doing the right thing. So stand up to the powerful media mavens and be heard because your voice is just as legitimate as any journalist’s. Speaking truth to power is essential if we are to break the cycle of endless war. Thank you for coming.
Source: Mark Davis | Strike the Root
“Engage people with what they expect; it is what they are able to discern and confirms their projections. It settles them into predictable patterns of response, occupying their minds while you wait for the extraordinary moment — that which they cannot anticipate.”–Sun Tzu, The Art of War
The definition of what makes an “enemy” may vary from person to person. But I would say that, generally, an enemy is one who has an active ability to do irreparable harm to you or your essential values. He is motivated by destruction, the destruction of all that you hold dear. He is capable and unrelenting. He is a legitimate threat. He will not compromise. He will not waver. He will do anything to wound you. He will not stop. He is possessed.
Americans have spent the better part of a century being told who their enemies are with very little explanation or substantiation. We have blindly rallied around our patriotic prerogative without knowing the root cause of the conflict or the nature of the target we are told to annihilate. We have been suckered into war after war, conjured by international interests in order to lure us into accepting greater centralization and concentrated globalism. As a culture, I’m sorry to say, we have been used. We are a tool of unmitigated doom. We are the loaded gun in the hand of the devil.
This paradigm has done irreparable harm to our standing in the eyes of the peoples of the world. But until recently, it has done very little harm to us as a society. We have allowed ourselves to be used like a bloody club, but we have not yet felt the true pain or the true cost. We have been insulated from consequence. However, this comfortable situation is quickly coming to an end.
When one applies the above definition of “the enemy” to Syria, one comes away with very little satisfaction. The Syrian government poses absolutely no immediate threat to the United States. In fact, the civil war that now rages within its borders has been completely fabricated by our own government. The insurgency has been funded, armed, trained and ultimately directed by the U.S. intelligence community. Without U.S. subversion, the civil war in Syria would not exist.
So, the question arises: If Syria is not the real enemy, who is?
I point back to the core issue. That is to say, I would examine who pose a legitimate threat to our country and our principles. The Syrian government under Bashar Assad clearly has no capability to threaten our freedom, our economic stability, our social stability, or our defensive capabilities. There is, though, a group of people out there who do, in fact, pose a significant threat to the American way of life on every conceivable level. These people do not live on the other side of the world. They do not wear foreign garb or speak another language. Most of them do not have pigmented skin or Asian features. They look just like you and I, and they live in Washington D.C.
If the so-called “debate” over a possible military strike in Syria has done anything, it has certainly brought the American public’s true enemies frothing to the surface like so much sewage. Men who posed as liberal proponents of peace not long ago now salivate over the prospect of bloodshed. Men who once posed as fiscal conservatives now clamor for more Federal funding to drive the U.S. war machine. Men who claimed to represent the citizenry now ignore all calls for reason by the public in the pursuit of global dominance.
I have warned of the considerable dangers of a war in Syria for years — long before most people knew or cared about the Assad regime. Being in this position has allowed me to view the escalating crisis with a considerable amount of objectivity. In the midst of so much chaos and confusion, if you know who stands to gain and who stands to lose, the progression of events becomes transparent, and the strategy of the actual enemy emerges.
So what have I observed so far?
If you want to know who has malicious intent toward our Constitutional values, simply move your eyes away from the Mideast and focus on our own capital. The ill will toward liberty held by the leadership of both the Democratic and Republican parties is obvious in the Congressional support of the banker bailouts, the Patriot Acts, the National Defense Authorization Act, the President’s domestic assassination directives, the hands-off approach to National Security Agency mass surveillance, etc. But even beyond these litmus tests, the Syrian debate has unveiled numerous enemies of the American people within our own government.
The catastrophe inherent in a Syrian strike is at least partially known to most of the public. We are fully aware that there will be blowback from any new strike in the Mideast (limited or unlimited), economically as well as internationally. So if the average American with little political experience understands the consequences of such an action, the average politician should be more than educated on the dangers. Any representative who blatantly ignores the calamity ahead is either very stupid or has an agenda.
I find it fascinating that politicians and bureaucrats from both sides of the aisle are now coming out of the woodwork to cheerlead alongside each other for war and the state.
For those who are predominantly preoccupied with Barack Obama as the source of all our ills, I would gladly point out that Republican leader and House Speaker John Boehner has also thrown his support behind a Syrian strike, even before the U.N. investigative report on Syrian chemical weapons use has been released.
In the meantime, self-proclaimed Republican stalwarts like John McCain (R-Ariz.) have argued that Obama’s “limited strike” response is “not enough.” This is the same man, by the way, who has been instrumental in the monetary and military support of Al Qaeda in Syria. McCain has recently called for avid pursuit of the new Russian proposal for chemical disarmament in Syria, not because he wants to find a peaceful solution to the situation, but because he believes the deal can be used as a bargaining chip to convince Congress to VOTE FOR military force, in order to “keep pressure on Assad”.
Secretary of State John Kerry, who not long ago ran for President on the platform of being an anti-war Democrat, now regularly begs the American people to back further war based on the same dubious evidence for which he once criticized the George W. Bush Administration. In fact, Kerry has made it clear that even if Congress votes “no” against a strike, he believes Obama has the right to set one in motion anyway.
Senator Lindsay Graham (R-S.C.), the man who openly admits in mainstream interviews that he believes the President has the right to indefinitely detain or assassinate American citizens without trial or oversight, has loudly indicated his support for a war on Syria. His criticisms parallel McCain’s in that he believes the Obama Administration should have attacked without Congressional approval or should commit to an all-out military shift into the region. That is to say, he believes the goal of the White House should be invasion and regime change, not just disarmament. Graham consistently fear mongers in the mainstream media, often warning that without a hard, immediate strike against Syria, catastrophe will befall Israel, and chemical andnuclear weapons will rain on America.
All I have to say to Graham is, if chemical or nuclear weapons are used against the American people, it will be because the establishment ALLOWED it to happen — just as it has allowed numerous attacks in the past to occur in order to facilitate pretext for a larger war. (The Gulf of Tonkin is a fitting example considering the many similarities between the Syrian debacle and Vietnam, the only difference being that this time the establishment is throwing its support on the side of the insurgency, rather than the prevailing government).
For those out there in the movement who are hoping for reason and logic to prevail during a Congressional debate on the Syrian issue, I would suggest that they do not hold their breath. This vote was decided before Obama ever allowed it to go to the Hill. The vote has been cast. The debate is a sideshow designed to make the American people feel as if their system of government still functions as it should. Remember, no Congress in the history of the United States has ever refused the request of a President to make war.
The more than 150 Congressmen who demanded a vote on the Syrian crisis did so because they wanted to be included in the process, not because they necessarily opposed a war. That leaves nearly 300 representatives who had NO PROBLEM whatsoever with Obama attacking Syria unilaterally without any checks or balances. The Senate panel that initiated the voting process on the strike plan passed the initiative 10-7. I have no doubt that Obama has the votes to confirm the use of force, even with all the talk of uncertainty in evidence or planning.
The Russian offer of organizing chemical disarmament has barely made a dent in the White House’s war rhetoric, as was evident in Barack Obama’s address to the nation yesterday. When asked in an interview with NBC if he has made up his mind whether or not he will forge ahead with military action if Congress votes his proposal down, Obama stated:
“It’s fair to say that I haven’t decided…”
Putting on the airs of a Roman Emperor, Obama’s thumb remains in the neutral position over the gladiator pit of Syria, but as he clearly points out, he can give the thumbs down anytime he chooses. If anything, the White House and the elitist machine are simply using the next few weeks (the approximate time being discussed for chemical disarmament) to establish further precedent, or conjure new atrocities, in order to garner a minimal public backing for violent action in the region.
And, let’s not forget our friendly enemies in the mainstream media. The MSM is in rare form the past week, fabricating numerous arguments as to why the average American “just doesn’t get the Syrian situation”. The latest disinformation campaigns seem to be revolving around generating alternative motivations for a strike -
Obama’s “red line” was crossed and we must strike in order to save face amongst our allies.
A refusal to strike Syria will “embolden Iran” and lead them to use their own WMD’s in terrorist acts (WMD’s which are still not proven to exist).
And my favorite argument: That refusing to strike would mean “abandoning” the Syrian rebelsin their war on Assad. You know, the same rebels permeated with psychopathic Al Qaeda operatives that our government trained and funded.
The mainstream media steamroller is barreling forward, searching for ANY talking point that will hook the American populace into rationalizing an attack. I have to say, I don’t think I’ve ever seen so many pencil-necked weaklings call for so much blood. The strategy seems to be an attempt to shift America’s attention away from the alleged chemical attack alone, and discombobulate us with multiple sales pitches of death in case Congressional support turns sour (which I doubt).
But let’s say Obama does not get his Congressional approval; as stated earlier his office has asserted on numerous occasions that he has the authority to trigger war regardless. A “no” vote in Washington means nothing today due to war powers granted after 9/11. The probable scenario, though, is the most common scenario. Congress will likely authorize the “use of limited military force” without directly declaring war on the Assad regime. This is exactly what Congress did in the wake of the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. There was no evidence of an Al Qaeda support structure and no evidence of weapons of mass destruction, but war exploded nonetheless. Congress gave Bush a blank check to do whatever he saw fit, and I believe Congress will do the same for Obama.
America is being set up to look like the bad guy or the fool, but why?
Our political leadership is devoted to the ideology of globalization, not sovereignty or U.S prosperity. A Syrian strike places the United States in tremendous peril, the likes of which have not been seen since the Cuban missile crisis. Syria itself is a vacuum of suffocating calamity; a black hole swirling in a void of economic and sociological interdependency. Where the United States enters, so follows Iran, so follows Israel, so follows Saudi Arabia, so follows Lebanon, so follows Jordan, so follows Egypt, so follows Russia, so follows China and on and on.
In my analysis of Syria over the years, I have exposed this domino effect of war as well as the possible calamities of an economic chain reaction. Escalating conflict in Syria will eventually lead to the end of the dollar’s world reserve status and the collapse of the U.S. financial system. Knowing that this is the ultimate result of a strike in the region, many people would ask WHYthe White House and so many prominent figures in Congress would be so hell-bent on setting such wheels in motion. I would stand back from the chaos and ask what I always ask: Who gains the most from the disaster?
The demise of American currency dominance and the degradation of the American spirit do indeed benefit a select few. For the most part, central banks and globalists have taken a hands-off approach to the Syrian debacle. Perhaps that’s because doing so makes it easier for them to survey the inevitable collapse from a distance and swoop in later as our “saviors,” ready to rebuild the world according to their own ideals. Having a debased and desperate U.S. populace certainly makes the transition to total globalization and centralization much easier.
My original query was: Who is the real enemy? No matter what happens in the coming months and years, never forget that question. Who poses the greatest threat to our freedom: Syria or the political ghouls trying to convince us to decimate Syria?
Who claims the power to take everything we have? Who claims the power to take our liberty and our lives at a whim? Who claims the power to kill innocents in our name? Who disregards the checks and balances of Constitutionalism at every turn? Who truly threatens our future and the future of our children?
Do not be distracted by stories of foreign monsters far away when the real monsters lurk so quietly under your bed. Even if we can find a successful strategy to pressure Congress into avoiding a Syrian conflict, I say remain vigilant. America is one global hiccup away from oblivion. And if this is what the establishment wants, they will find a way to make it happen. The threat of continuous U.S. catastrophe will only end when the poison is removed from our very veins, and that process of purification begins with the removal of the criminal political structures and banking structures in Washington.
Source: Brandon Smith | Alt-Market
The frantic spin of the millisecond is that the White House is taking a ‘hard look’ at the Russian proposal for Bashar Assad to place Syria’s chemical weapons arsenal under UN control, thus at least postponing another US war in the Middle East.
Oh, the joys of the geopolitical chessboard; Russia throwing a lifeline to save US President Barack Obama from his self-spun ‘red line’.
True diplomats are supposed to prevent wars – not pose as warmongers. American exceptionalism is of course exempted. So just as Secretary of State John Kerry had the pedal on the metal selling yet another war in a London presser, his beat up Chevy was overtaken by a diplomatic Maserati: Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov.
This was Kerry’s slip: “… [Assad] could turn over any single bit of his chemical weapons to the international community in the next week. Turn it over. All of it. And without delay and allow the full and total accounting for that. But he isn’t about to do it and it can’t be done obviously.”
It can be done, obviously, as Lavrov turned Kerry’s move against him – forwarding a two-step proposal to Damascus; Syria turns its chemical weapons to UN control and later agrees with their destruction, as well as joining the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons. Syrian Foreign Minister Moallem took no time to agree. The devil, of course, is in the fine print.
Somebody help me! What’s the message?
Predictably, all hell broke loose at the State Department. Dammit! Darn Russki peacenik! A Kerry spokeswoman characterized it as a “rhetorical argument”. It was just “talk”. Damascus and Moscow have a horrible track record. This was just a “stalling tactic.” Washington could not trust Assad. And even if there was a “serious” proposal that would not delay the White House’s push to sell its war in the US Congress.
Yet two hours later, closet future US presidential candidate Hillary Clinton saw it as… a serious proposal, “suggested by Secretary Kerry and the Russians.” And she made clear she was for it after meeting with Obama himself.
Meanwhile, the batshit crazy department kept the pedal on the metal, with National Security Adviser Susan ‘Wolfowitz’ Rice busy warning that chemical attacks in Syria are a “serious threat to our national security” including to “citizens at home.” What, no ‘mushroom cloud’?
Yet just as ‘on message’ was up in smoke, magically, deputy national security adviser Tony Blinken, State Department spokeswoman Marie Harf and Hillary herself started talking in unison (somebody forgot to brief Rice). And the White House decided to take its ‘hard look’. Sort of. Because expectations are not that high. And the push to war in the US Congress is bound to continue.
Not even hardcore Beltway junkies have been able to keep track in real time of the Obama administration’s ever-shifting ‘policy’. This is how it (theoretically) stands. “Assad is responsible for the gas attack.” Translation; he did not order it, directly (no one with half a brain, apart from the Return of the Living Dead neo-cons, believes the current White House “evidence” sticks). But he’s still “responsible”. And even if Al-Nusra Front did it – with ‘kitchen sarin’ imported from Iraq, as I proposed here, Assad is still “responsible”; after all he must protect Syrian citizens.
In his Monday TV Anschluss, Obama, clinging to the lifeline, was quick to steal Lavrov’s credit, saying he had “discussed” the broad outlook of what Russia announced directly with Putin at the G20 summit last week. This has not been corroborated by Moscow.
Obama told CNN this was a “potentially positive thought.” And he was keen to stress it only happened not because his Designated War Salesman slipped, but because of a “credible military threat.” To NBC, he kept peddling what Kerry defined as an “unbelievably small” attack; the US “can strike without provoking a counter-attack.” Yet to CNN he admitted, “the notion that Mr. Assad could significantly threaten the United States is just not the case.”
So why the need for the “unbelievably small” kinetic whatever? That’s too much of a metaphysical question for US journalism.
You have the right to remain inspected
Now for the fine print. Everybody knows what happened to Saddam Hussein and Colonel Gaddafi after they gave up their deterrence. Assuming both Washington and Damascus accept Lavrov’s proposal, this could easily be derailed into an Iraqi-style ultra-harsh inspection regime. At least in theory, no US Air Force will attack UN inspectors at Syrian chemical weapons depots. As for false flags, don’t underestimate Bandar Bush’s deep pockets.
Still, considering Washington won’t abandon its real agenda – regime change – Obama might eventually be re-presented with his full emperor hand to ‘supervise’ the chemical weapons handover and ‘punish’ any infringement, real or otherwise, by Damascus, facilitated by the usual spies infiltrated into the inspectors mechanism. As in, “if you complain, we bomb.”
The key point in all this, though, is that for Damascus chemical weapons are just a detail – they are worthless in the battlefield. What matters is the 250,000-strong Syrian Arab Army (SAA), as well as military support by Iran and especially Russia – as in badass missiles of the Yakhont variety or S-300 (even 400) systems. Destroying the weapons – assuming Damascus agrees – is a very long-term proposition, measured in years; even Russia and the US have not destroyed theirs. By then, the myriad gangs of the “Un-Free” Syrian Army may have been thoroughly defeated.
Obama may have read the writing on the (bloody) wall; forget about convincing the US Congress to bomb Damascus when there’s a real diplomatic way out on the table. Yet nothing changes in the long run. Those who are paying or cheering in the sidelines for this operation – from Bandar Bush to Tel Aviv – want by all means to smash Damascus, for the benefit of Israel in terms of strategic balance, and for the benefit of the House of Saud in terms of isolating Iran in the Middle East.
So Lavrov’s chess move is not a checkmate; it is a gambit, meant to prevent the United States from becoming Al-Qaeda’s Air Force, at least for now. The quagmire would then move to a negotiating table – which would include those chemical weapons inspections.
No wonder assorted Western-weaponized psychos and jihadists on the ground in Syria don’t like this one bit. It’s happening just as more damning circumstantial evidence of false flags galore surface.
RT has been informed that the ‘rebels’ may be planning a monster false flag on Israel, to be launched from Assad-controlled ground.
And then there’s the release of two former hostages detained for five months by the ‘rebels’ in appalling conditions; Domenico Quirico, a correspondent for La Stampa, and Belgian historian Pierre Piccinin. Here is a shortened version of Quirico’s story, in English.
I talked to a very close friend at La Stampa who spoke directly with Quirico. He confirmed that Quirico and Piccinin overheard a Skype conversation between a ‘rebel’ speaking very bad English, who introduced himself as an ‘FSA General’, and somebody speaking very good English on the other side of the line. It was clear from the conversation that the Assad government was NOT responsible for the gas attack in Ghouta. So Quirico is admitting exactly what Piccinin told Belgian TV. It may not be conclusive; yet as proof goes, it certainly beats the Israeli-fed White House intel.
Unlike Piccinin, Quirico cannot tell the whole true story; most of all because La Stampa, a newspaper owned by the Agnelli family, very close to Henry Kissinger, is staunchly pro-‘rebel’.
Here’s a translation of what Piccinin said; “It’s a moral duty that we have, Domenico and myself, to say it was not the government of Bashar Assad that used sarin gas or other nerve agent, in the Damascene suburb of Ghouta. We are certain about this, it’s a conversation that we captured, even if it pains me to say it; I ferociously support the Free Syrian Army, and its fair struggle for democracy.”
Needless to say, none of this crucial development is being fully reported by US corporate media.
The Anschluss continues. Obama is addressing US public opinion this Tuesday night. Don’t expect him to announce yet another twist to the ‘Obama Doctrine’ – criminalizing ‘evil’ dictators who use Agent Orange, napalm, white phosphorous and depleted uranium against other people.
Pepe Escobar is the roving correspondent for Asia Times/Hong Kong, an analyst for RT and TomDispatch, and a frequent contributor to websites and radio shows ranging from the US to East Asia.
Update: WAR=UNITY. The President just gave his speech on Syria. He intends to launch an air attack. He wants Congress to approve it. He didn’t say what he’ll do if Congress refuses, and he didn’t say how the attacks will limit Assad’s ability to use chemical weapons on his people in the future. He’s utterly convinced, he claims, that Assad deployed chemical weapons. He’s “seen the evidence.”
Why should we believe him? There are ample reports that “the rebels” used those weapons. Those would be the rebels the US government is backing and arming.
Obama appears to trust he has the votes in Congress to approve his attack. He sees this as a feel-good moment when Congress and the White House are united. “Look, we can work together.”
He referred to Congress as “representatives of the American people.” So Obama is a comedian now. He’s suggesting that all of America will share in this act of war. Congress represents the American people the way a herd of lions is accountable to deer and antelope.
Here is the piece I’d already finished an hour before Obama made his speech. I don’t need to change anything, except perhaps to elevate the dosage of mescaline it would take to make Brian Williams finally “see the light.”
Brian Williams, the leading disinformation media specialist on American television, has accidentally ingested a drug before his broadcast.
Somehow, through a manufacturer’s error, mescaline was inserted in a headache pill. Brian just happened to take a pill in that bad batch.
His mind is scrambled.
He suddenly realizes he’s been on a lying jag for decades. What a revelation.
He sees a glint of daylight. He can go on television and tell the truth for once…and what better story to explore than the imminent US attack on Syria. Yes, he’ll do it. He’ll try for redemption.
He sits there on camera, his eyes shining. His mind is all over the place. But he bites his lip and begins:
“—Ladies and gentlemen…
I’m Brian Williams. Freedom is the wild card in any so-called system. How’s that for my opener?
That’s what I want to tell you, folks…the wild card. Yes…uh…
So listen up: Bureaucrats and other lackeys of the State are trained to work as if they are dealing with closed systems. They react to any deviation (freedom) as if it’s a black widow spider in a hotel bed.
Technocrats, the leading edge of the State, are trying to build a machine that incorporates all humans. They hail this as a future in which “the right answer” will always be obtained.
You have no right to be wrong. This is what we are coming to.
You can see this in the run-up to the planned attack on Syria. Leaders are telling us, just as they did prior to the invasion in Iraq, that all the facts add up to the right answer. Once that answer is extracted, there is no turning back.
Syria. Chemical warfare was used. The Assad government used it. That’s the correct answer. Therefore, war. End of debate.
Meanwhile, behind the scenes, the picture looks a little different. I’m picturing that picture, ladies and gentlemen. The commander-in-chief is being briefed:
“Well, Mr. President, I want to recap where we are on Syria. I’m waiting for Prince Bandar to tell us. Ha-ha. Anyhow, we enabled the Syrian rebels or the terrorists, or al Qaeda, or the freedom fighters, or whatever we’re calling them today. We helped arm them. Now we’re about to bomb Syria to keep them in the game. These rebels are the same people we’re supposedly fighting in Afghanistan, right? I’m not against any of this, but I’m just saying it’s getting harder to sell it. And if our story line crumbles, we’re in deep trouble, Mr. President. People are more aware now. We’ve played both sides against the middle so many times before, the scenario is almost dead on arrival…”
Hi. Brian Williams still here. Let me make a leap, all you good folks out there in television land. The massive op/narrative called The New Age, which began its rapid spread in the 1960s, was designed to disguise our fascist government by moving consciousness to an appreciation for, and an insistence on, so-called spiritual unity.
Barack Obama was supposed to be the first president standing for that apotheosis. He would, in a sense, rule by faith, the faith of his supporters. He would sweep away all objections to government as the supplier of spiritual unity.
Government’s only hope is to somehow appear supernatural and inevitable. It can’t stand on its own.
Wars, especially, require “spiritual faith” in the mission. Obama has failed on this count, and with the opposition to an attack on Syria coming from so many quarters, there is very little cover left for him.
On a larger scale, the attempt to create a closed system, through a military-industrial-oil complex, is falling apart. Oil as the only recognized energy source for the planet determines the chessboard and the playbook. In one stroke, it names the geopolitical hot spots and the conflicts and the need for war as the American solution.
In truth, there are many technologies that could, if developed sufficiently, take us on the road to energy abundance. They are being stopped by the military-industrial-oil complex, not only to keep us on the oil teat, but also to keep us pinned to the need to make war to guarantee the oil flow.
But this system is losing its solid feel. It’s becoming more transparent as an op, long past its prime.
Every significant geopolitical story on the nightly news is a dead pig painted with lipstick.
On the home front, media, fed by politicians, are focusing on “dangerous people” who value freedom. This is a tale so old it creaks. It was told in ancient Egypt, in Greece, in Rome during the death throes of the Empire. Now, in America, it can only be spun by fatuously accusing freedom lovers of racism.
The Surveillance State is losing public support by the day. The notion that the government has to spy on everybody all the time to find “the terrorists” is so off-key, it sounds like a barroom medley sung by drunken sailors. Or a pronouncement rolled out at the height of the Catholic Inquisition.
To impose a closed system on the populace, it’s necessary to reduce the definition of what a person is. In this modern age, that strategy involves promoting stripped-down, lowest-common-denominator thought as a marvelous advance that will enable “human-machine” interactions…bringing us to the brink of a new techno-paradise.
It’s such a desperate tale, one wonders how the sellers can make it through the day without falling down and laughing themselves out of court.
The answer is: government funding. Like the oil monopoly, like the war machine, like the nuclear-energy titan, the government dispenses $$ to make the myths endure.
The pinnacle of this corruption is war. Offensive war. Not war to protect the home front, but to establish new beachheads of conquest, under the pretension of helping to liberate the oppressed. To create a sense of unity where unity was lacking.
The proposed attack on Syria is the latest footnote.
It’s not working.
People are waking up. Also, the man in the White House just can’t create new jobs. He’s putting on a show of trying, but he can’t do it, because he’s not interested in doing it. He wants more victims. So the people are looking at him with a tougher gaze. They don’t trust him.
On the issue of war against Syria, Obama can only try to take a moral high ground based on the idea that a chemical attack occurred. That’s all he’s got. He can’t peddle spiritual unity in this case. He’s dying on the vine.
The whole thing is a sham and a scam and a cardboard front. Get it? I’m trying to tell you, my fellow Americans, ladies and gentlemen, all you good folks out there, what’s really happening. I’m hitting the high points.
We, in the media, are your basic liars. That’s our skill. That’s what makes us great. Right now, we’re selling the war to you. We’re trying, damn it, but it’s not easy. We’ve got so little to work with.
Dianne Sawyer, Scott Pelley, and I are carnival barkers. We dress it up, but that’s all we are. We fake it every night. I don’t even need to be here. You could have a CGI of me, programmed with messages from the White House, polished by our writers at NBC. Now, in fact, looking back at my career, that’s what it feels like. I was never here. I don’t know where the hell I was, but through a stroke of fate, I’m back. And I’m trying to feed you a little truth.
Just think oil and keep thinking oil. Oil pipeline through Syria. Oil in the Middle East.
Anyway…where was I? I could show you pictures of a hundred, two hundred places around the world where governments are torturing and killing their own people and putting them in cages. Is the US supposed to go into all those places and liberate the oppressed? Are we supposed to force free elections from the North Pole to Tierra del Fuego?
And what is a free election? I’ll tell you. It’s the same big-time players behind the scenes cooking the vote for a new bunch of tyrants.
The only way to stop that—and it’s a long shot—is to form a government based on severely limiting the power of government.
Wow. What an idea! Where did that come from? Am I, Brian Williams, the first person to see that?
Anyway, Syria is a crazy op that’s gotten out of control.
We’ve got Egypt, Libya, Syria, Iraq. Why would the US government be trying to upset the apple cart in those places? To free the people? Don’t be stupid. To obtain cheaper oil prices? How is that working out?
If Dianne, Scott, and I were real reporters, this is the issue we’d be working on. Is this a destabilizing operation aimed at disrupting the flow of oil? Is this a high-level game in which the US and other industrial economies take a huge energy hit? Is this a prelude to the acceleration of the forces of elite Globalism? Is this the old create-chaos and then bring in order on top of that?
Right now, that’s what it looks like to me. Sitting here, that’s my thesis. I don’t think I’ll be able to get anybody in the White House to give me a straight answer, though.
But it’s a start. So…for all the good people here at NBC News, good night. I’ll be back tomorrow, possibly broadcasting from a holding cell under CIA headquarters at Langley. In which case, don’t believe anything I say. Signing off. Brian Williams.
Source: No More Fake News