Peace not war - IPAN calls for Aussies to moblilise against war plans
IPAN denounces recent rabid media war propaganda. Call for all people who want peace to mobilise and force the Australian Government off path to war.
IPAN denounces recent rabid media war propaganda. Call for all people who want peace to mobilise and force the Australian Government off path to war.
The Conversation claims "Academic rigour, journalistic flair," but is it just another agent of the Mainstream News affair complete with a mainstream news (MSN) editor, renowned by some for her incredibly boring political reporting which has put generations of Australians off politics in a great service to the elite? Unsurprisingly, the Conversation article, "White House under siege as scandal follows scandal – and it won’t end any time soon," by Kumuda Simpson, Lecturer in International Relations, La Trobe University repeats the scuttlebut that passes for political comment in the mainstream media, citing CNBC, the Washington Post and all the usual propaganda suspects. Far from encouraging the deep questioning and analysis one once expected of a university lecturer, Simpson is simply transmitting a flimsy political claim that President Trump should not carry on useful discussions with Russia about war and terrorism and Syria. Failing to present the other side, Simpson asserts that Russia cannot be trusted because it prefers to keep the Assad government (which he misnames a 'regime') in power, 'despite ongoing atrocities', which incredibly harmful allegation Simpson backs up by citing the latest egregious beat-up chorus against the Syrian Government as carried by the New York Times rag. ("Syrian Crematory Is Hiding Mass Killings of Prisoners, U.S. Says"). Candobetter.net Editor: UPDATE: Greg Wood's comments on the article discussed here were later all removed by the site editor. He is awaiting an explanation.
Comments under the article trended into a discussion about the validity of the MSN vs the 'alternative press', leading me to my analysis below. Phil Chamberlain's comment seemed typical of the fallacy that the official mainstream news is 'real news' because it uses 'real reporters' instead of opinion and that alternative news-sites are only opinions, which people use to confirm their own biases:
“The problem is that the so called MSM [Read proper journalism] will investigate facts and call to account”
This statement was written on The Conversation in rebuttal to another commenter who cited lack of faith in the mainstream media (MSM) and had the poor judgement to seek (as described by Mr Chamberlain) 'nutjob' info at 'dodgy' sites. Another commenter replied to this statement with some derision and pointing out that Murdoch and his media-magnate ilk exercise editorial control.
In fact the realm of journalistic control is huge and frighteningly pervasive.
When I read the statement that the MSM is 'proper journalism' and 'will investigate facts and call to account', I felt that oddly conflicted reaction that is all too frequent these days - laugh out loud nausea. It occurs when confronted with ridiculous notions that enable horrific contingencies to unfold.
It is not just Murdoch et al defining their journos’ agenda and editorial content. It has now compounded into self-censored homogeneity of editorial via a pervasive sense of ‘echo-chamber’ peer regulation. The journos are now so imbued with auto-recognition and compliance to their own ‘chook-house’ narratives that they’ve lost touch with real world facts and interpretative rigor.
The key elements sustaining the delusion seem to be a) the use of select facts at the persistent exclusion of others (disobedient facts) that are just as or even more critical to the matters at hand, and b) the interpretation of those select facts through a narrow premise base that remains unexamined for breadth or merit whilst being inculcated to the herd (of journos and thence the public) via its ceaseless implicit and explicit repetition.
Examples of assumption that are embedded and beyond examination include: “Russia is a global aggressor”; “Russia hacked the US election”; Mass, industrial scale migration and migration per se are the same thing; Far Right = opposition to (mass) immigration; that populism is bad, which by direct implication decrees that only the political/economic elite and their paid technocrats know what is good for us all. This utterly oversights the demonstrable premise that the elites have a globalised common interest that does not natively intersect with the ‘locals’ in any given area, thus the locals are ultimately dispensable in pursuit of the ‘common good’. (What a tortured concept that has become when measured at a national let alone global scale).
Examples of critical facts that are routinely ignored include: the benevolent outcome delivered in Crimea compared to the conflict in the Donbas; the fascist, CIA backed coup that gave Russian no choice but to act as it did; the fact that the Crimea is traditionally and until very recently was, Russian, and, in accord with this, Russia had international approval to station up to 20,000 military personnel in Crimea - accordingly it did not ‘invade’ Crimea; that Russia annexed Crimea when in fact the Crimeans voted overwhelmingly to become an autonomous republic within the Russian federation; the US and EU sanctions of Russia for this falsely alleged ‘annexing’ are illegal under WTO rules; that the US would go absolutely apeshit if Russia did in Cuba what NATO (the US) is doing in the territories bordering Russia; that cheerleading the downfall of Assad is exactly what has delivered Iraq and Libya into the toilet; that many of Marine Le Pen’s economic policies are in fact leftist - but she is ‘far right’ solely due to her rejection of the globalist agenda of open borders and mass migration. The latter is prime example of a macro(n) smear utilised to avoid merit-based debate on the highly vexed topic of mass migration as an economic tool to furnish elite advantage at the expense of local populations.
This linked video linked provides a concise and ultimately dangerous example of such wilful MSM delusion.
It presents Putin engaging a roundtable of western journos and directly challenging them to listen to him about the obvious but steadfastly ignored facts regarding who indeed is the geopolitical aggressor - Russia or the US? He clearly states that he does not expect them to report his factual position to their readers and he asks what will it take for them to listen - WW3?
The MSM deal with facts and investigation? What is the emoji for ‘rolling on the floor vomiting my guts up’?
The Cold War has long been over, but it seems, not for all. The idea of reconciling with Russia has been met by fierce resistance on Capitol Hill. Though Trump promised to repair broken relations while on the campaign trail, the new US administration has been forced into a struggle against the nation’s establishment. Will the new president still be able to find common ground with Moscow? Or are we in for Cold War Two? RT's Sophie Shevardnadze asks a former adviser to President Ronald Reagan on Russian affairs, Russia scholar and author – Suzanne Massie. Originally published on RT 13 Mar, 2017 07:24 at https://www.rt.com/shows/sophieco/380460-cold-war-russia-us/
Sophie Shevardnadze: Suzanne Massie, adviser to President Ronald Reagan on Russia policy, it's really great to have you on our show today, welcome.
Suzanne Massie: Thank you, I am happy to be here.
SS: The Washington Post says that the White House doesn’t have enough capable experts to advise on Russia anymore, compared to Reagan times. What do you think, are people who are behind the Russian policy in Washington misinformed?
SM: Well, I’d like to be tactful about this, but I do think that we have a lack of such things, at least recently, much more recently. Now, I don't think right now that we have... I don't like the word "expert", but I mean people who really know you, who know the language, who know your history, and who feel your history. I don't feel we have very many like that right now in official positions.
SS: Now, when you started working with President Reagan, he actually reached out to you because he wanted work with people who were outside of the inner circle of Washington experts, right? Do you think the current administration is ready to make an effort like that?
SM: I wouldn’t speak for them. Everybody in America at this moment, it seems, is very confused about our new president and where he's going and what he's going to say next. I think it's too early to tell. I happen to care a great deal for Russia and I have for many years, and I have always maintained the exact position from the beginning and that is you have a lot to give us and we have a lot to give you. We should be together, because together we could do a great deal more than we can do apart for the rest of the world. That's been my position. If they ever wanted to talk to me about that, I would be happy.
SS: Well, you give speeches on Russian relations -why do you think voices like yours are ignored?
SM: They are not. The American public is very-very different from what is now being heard in the U.S. It comes from Washington and it comes from some of the media. Much good stuff exists on the Internet if you want to look for it, but the great public and I say that, basically, sometimes, even Russia forgets that Washington is not the U.S. any more than Paris is the whole France. We have other places and I have been saying: instead of trying to concentrate all the time on Washington you should be concentrating on other places in the United States. Now, I have given lectures in every state of the United States except Alaska and Hawaii, and I have seen the same thing and I've done it now for about 20 years - the same thing. The American people, the public, is always very curious about you, they always want to know, they always say to me: why Russia, why did I go and study Russia? They ask questions, they are always curious and they are not hostile. Americans, even up in Maine, not even Maine, which is a state of fishermen and boat-builders and you know, even the men who came to plough our snow the night before I left - said exactly the same thing as I'm saying to you: "We should be together". "You know" - he kept saying - "You know, I don't like what they're saying, the press". And that is the fact. So I wouldn't take too seriously the things that are said now in limited ways, and say that the public feels that way. No American I have ever met would like to have a war with you.
SS: Well, when I turn on the TV, or read the newspapers...
SM: I know...
SS: ...Anyone who actually speaks out for mending ties with Russia is automatically branded a "Kremlin Spy" - I mean, look at Trump. Is there place for a positive opinion about Russia in American mainstream at all?
SM: Yes. But, remember, who the mainstream is run by - very few people in the end. I don't know how many people actually control the main media - and I'm talking CNN, Fox News, etc. They are corporations and those people are the ones who correct.... Now, I know, that mainstream is what you're hearing, and what I'm saying is: don't pay too much attention to it. It is not the mainstream of public feeling, and yet - listen, I don't hesitate to say what I feel, but I'd tell you... in my lectures, lately, you know what I name them? I name them "A Few Things About Russia Today You May Not Have Read in the Newspapers". And you should see how people flock to hear that.
SS: But the thing is...even if the people themselves are not hostile towards Russia, this one-sided image of Russia in the mainstream leads to concrete actions. For instance, Trump is constantly coming under fire for alleged ties with Russia.
SS: But look at President’s National Security Adviser who was actually forced to resign, and that’s after it emerged he was maintaining dialogue with Russian officials. I'm wondering if this is actually going to turn into a McСarthy-era witch hunt against Trump’s administration, just because they want to mend ties?
SM: People have mentioned this, and people as, let’s say, distinguished as Stephen Cohen, whom you may know. I am not sure what's going to happen in the next thing. Because all of our Senators don't feel that way, I don't know about our House of Representatives, but our Senators, many of whom I know, don't feel this way. Many of them have noticed exactly what you're saying. Many, I would say, influential people in the United States - and that means professors, people who are in the field, also have noticed it, and there's quite a reaction against it. So, I'm not sure, it's as pessimistic as you see it.
SS: Hopefully. Now, I want to go back a little bit to your collaboration with President Reagan, because Reagan did choose to negotiate, but at the same time he didn’t back down from military confrontation. What do you think of adopting Reagan’s ‘peace through strength’ policy today? Do you think this military power is needed to preserve stability?
SM: I don't, personally. That's my answer - I don't. I actually am very sorry for the amount of weapons, not only that the U.S. or Russia - or anybody... I really think that the world needs less arms instead of more. There are some people who make a great deal of money from arms and therefore they have a great deal of interest, and seeing precisely that the kind of... well, mainstream that you're talking about. Because I always ask: what point is in it? What are we gaining from this? I think we gain very little. I would like to see much less, and particularly, Ronald Reagan's dream which was less and hopefully no atomic weapons.
SS: So, just to sum this up, do you think that the current administration will overcome the political establishment’s objections to have a thaw with Russia?
SM: I hope so. I hope so. There are many people who are concerned - just because we don't know yet, what form the new administration is going to take. It's not even chosen entirely. I think you’re right, I have observed the same thing. There is a group of people, in Washington, they’re not all transparent, who actually would like to prevent Trump - so it will depend on whether Trump has the guts to go against the whole establishment that he does not know.
SS: You know, The phrase “trust but verify” which Reagan was famous for - you are the one who taught him that, that’s a Russian proverb translated into English - that has since become part of the American political dictionary, actually
SM: Not only the American dictionary. They are selling everything from soup to nuts on television.
SS: Do you think there’s room for trust now? Can American leadership build enough trust with Russia to be able to verify?
SM: I hope so. We were working in that direction. I can tell you, there are masses of people who could, but will they be in power - we don't know that yet. I think we have to wait a little bit and see what happens, and that's the advice I would give to anyone here. It's just wait a little and see what happens before you act too quickly. I don't know what's going to happen, I have no idea. And that, as you know, it's in our newspapers every day - what's going on, what going to happen? We don't know. There are some real people against in the Senate and in the other places, and we'll see who wins in this. But I can only tell you that the public does count and the public does not want war with Russia - and why should they? There's no reason for it. So, I like to trust in the intelligence of the American public - it does have a kind of an intelligence, a collective intelligence. I think the American public was very anxious for a change because of many things, and not just because of you or foreign policy, and they did that and now everybody's adjusting to that change and to new personalities. Reagan, after all, had a lot of experience, governing. He’s been governor of California - a very big state, very important state - for two terms. So he had a lot of experience with the public, remember that. He had been going around, he had spoken for GE and he himself gave that a lot of credit for his being the kind of President he was. But he had an awful lot of appearances. He knew how to talk to the public. Now that's missing right now. Mr. Trump made a lot of money, he didn't necessarily talk to the public a great deal or know the public very well. So... again, we have to wait. But I know how people denigrated Reagan. Oh my, did they do it! They kept saying he was - the same media that you're talking about - said that he was a two-bit actor, that he never read, that he really was kind of stupid and went to sleep all the time, and... that is not true.
SS: Look what happened, he was one of the greatest Presidents of the U.S.
SM: He also read all the time, and that's how he got to know me. He read all of my books.
SS: While we're all waiting to see what happens in America, I still want to ask you a little bit about what's going on right now - people over here, they are really wondering why has Russia today become a scapegoat for everything bad that happens in America. I mean, I don't know if you're big in Twitter or Instagram, but there's even a hashtag #russiansdidit. That's kind of funny.
SM: It's now become a joke, as a cartoon. I don't know if you've seen that part. It’s very funny and it's actually not too polite to even say, but I will say - there's a picture of two dogs and the dog says to one dog: "Guess what, the Russians pooped in the hall!"
Now, you see, blaming even that on Russians. It was all over the place. There are all kinds of jokes about that. People realise, they are not stupid, that this is excessive. I happen to agree with you, I think it’s very dangerous, I have fought it as much as I could because I had the same feeling: that you couldn't say anything. That was like McCarthyism, you couldn't say anything. I decided to figure out how to say and that's why I named those things "A Few Things You May Not Have Read in the Newspapers" - I didn't say bad things about the newspapers, but I did tell them all kinds of things that I saw here, that they were very-very interested. Realise, we don't get very much news about you. And I mean personal news. You know, the things you take for granted.
SS: You what I else I noticed? During the Cold War, the Americans systematically criticised the Soviet Union, but if you look at right now, personal attacks on Russia’s President are prevalent.
SM: That's terrible.
SS: Why do you think the Russian-American relations soured down to the point of personal animosity?
SM: I think it's disgraceful and many agree with me. I don't know… You have to admit that probably, there are some enemies there. They are not exactly transparent. They have done it… that has never happened in our history that I know, that there's been directed so much personally, that I finally said, really, if Mr. Putin actually did all the things they say he did, he wouldn't have time to rule Russia at all. It gets to be... absolutely absurd: all the things that are written. It's not right and I feel it is not correct to do that. I happen to have great pleasure of knowing Mr. Putin a little bit. After all, I was a great friend of Sobchak and I was in St. Petersburg, which is my city, and it's not that big, and so you meet people, you know... and, well, I was once introduced on a Boston radio program as being the only woman in the world who had been kissed by Ronald Reagan and Vladimir Putin. I had to say - "But it was very chaste, it was in the church!" And that's really only because of the old days, in Petersburg. So, personally, I always wish him well, I know how hard a job it is, not only in foreign policy, but right here - how much responsibility, how much difficulty. So, I always watch, with, let's say, an equal eye.
SS: You put an emphasis on personal relations - and Trump wants to fix just that. Can ‘person to person’ contact between the leaders actually turn around the whole relationship, would that be enough?
SM: Reagan did it, and he wanted very much to do it, and he deeply believed in personal relations. That's a matter of record. He always thought that if people could speak face-to-face, you could go much further than any other way, and he put that into practice. I'm sure that you know that none of his advisors, except, perhaps, Mr. Shultz wanted him to meet at all with Mr. Gorbachev. They didn't want it. You know why? They said - "He wasn't up to it" - Reagan, "he was not up to it". Well, Reagan simply said "I want to and I will" and he was supported very strongly by his wife, Nancy, who was all for it. So, they did it against... When I came in to that, I was the only woman, there were no women, it was all, absolutely, men. A male administration and they didn’t want it. He had many of his counselors who were absolutely against him meeting Gorbachev. It was his determination. And you know what else he said? He said: "We are not going to discuss ICBMs and all those initials. We are going to discuss basic things, absolutely basic things - like why are they afraid of us and why are we afraid of them, and that's what we're going to talk about". That was Geneva.
SS: But, then, if we follow that logic, we had Putin and Bush - they had good relations, Obama and Medvedev got along, Obama and Putin - not so much. But if the relations between Great Powers depend on personal relationships between the leaders, doesn't that mean the minute one of the leaders is replaced, then everything - and the understanding that has been there between them goes off track?
SM: Would you think it's also ‘naoborot’ - I mean, they didn't get so well along with Obama, or Hillary, she might have been... I don't think so.
SS: Look where we are right now, I mean, people call this the "new Cold War" era, just because they didn't get along so well.
SM: You're not going to get very far with me on that because I don't think it is, and I do believe in the American public and I don't believe in that little group in Washington or in the media who have decided to mount an attack on Mr. Trump. I don't know Mr. Trump, I don't know what he's going to do. I have some doubts, but I'm willing to give him a little time, he did get elected. I didn't happen to vote either for Mr. Trump or Mrs. Clinton, because I knew them, and I just couldn't. I could not do it. But I'll tell you one good thing that's happening - American people have woken up a lot and…they were pretty much going along, thinking only of themselves, if you want, "they and our own problems", you know. But now, they realise that they hadn't paid enough attention to our own government, and now there's a great deal more interest in grassroots, local, which, I think, is very important. Everybody was kind of asleep, you know, thinking it was all going to go along the same old way, and then, suddenly, it isn't. So, now, everybody is paying a lot of attention.
SS: I want to talk to you a bit about NATO.
SM: Oh God, yes.
SS: So, it happened with the NATO expansion into Eastern Europe which irritates Moscow to this day…
SM: Of course!
SS: So one administration was ready to leave East Europe neutral, but then Bill Clinton and Bush Jr. they decided to expand. All this time Moscow was protesting against this…
SM: I know.
SS: They were very firm about their position in the 90s, the 00s, and the 10s, until this day. Why was it and still is ignored?
SM: I have just said this, at a speech that I gave at the Baltic Forum. I've said, number one, coexistence can never be brought about by force, number one, and that I personally, think that putting soldiers on people's borders is not the way to start a constructive conversation, most particularly with Russia. I think sometimes it will help to simply look at the map and you might understand better - after all, the U.S. is, I would say, very lucky, to have nobody particularly threatening on our borders. We have Canada, we have Mexico, and on the other two siders we have fishes. We have two big ponds with fishes. And that's it. Having worries about borders is not something that we… we’ve been very fortunate about that. But other people do have worries. They do have history, they do remember their history and, of course, Russia above all, does remember its history, not only their recent history, but before that. The big mistake of the Western policy was that the West was making policy about a country that no longer existed.
SS: Americans believe in exceptionalism and exceptionalism has led to interventions and the spreading of liberal values; On the other hand, there's isolationism - like Trump’s America First ideas. Which one do you think will prevail?
SM: I can't tell you who's going to prevail.
SS: What do you think?
SM: I personally think that there's a great mood for thinking about America right now. We have a lot of problems, so I think there may be a move away from, let's say, interfering all over the place or the external policy. I think Americans are ready and desiring to think about themselves, if you think that that's isolationism. In that respect, it will be more thinking about itself, now, than worrying about every other country in the world. We could never forget Russia, but that is something else. But, I really do, I think, perhaps, you're right, that there may be more pulling in.
SS: Finally, I just want to know because, U.S. and Russia mainly disagree on foreign policy - in Syria, on President Trump's confrontation path towards Iran - do you think that Russia and U.S. can manage to cooperate selectively? Do you think they can agree to disagree?
SM: I hope so, I hope so. Why not? After all, nobody agrees with everything anybody else says. I don't really believe that any country is exceptional and absolutely... I think, every country has something to contribute. So, we may not agree, but, at least, we can respect each other's feelings, and not only feelings - history and point of view may not be the same as ours.
SS: Thank you so much for this wonderful interview. Suzanne Massie, adviser to President Ronald Reagan. And we thank Hotel Metropol that gave us an opportunity to record this interview in its Executive Lounge. Thank you.
If you take your information from the mainstream media, then you could have thought that, under Obama/Clinton/John Kerry, Syria and East Ukraine were being rescued from dastardly governments by a benevolent US-NATO, which is standing up to Grizzly-bear Russia. If you read the articles on Syria and Ukraine on this site, which takes its information from a wide range of sources, you would be aware of how scary the prospect of Hillary Clinton winning the US 2017 elections really was. Already guilty of tens of thousands of deaths in Libya and Syria as Obama's foreign secretary, she seemed to be enthusiastically marching straight into WW3 with the approval of George Soros, Obama, Merkel, Hollande, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Australia, Israel .... The mainstream press was encouraging everyone to get right in there behind her. Hillary's very shallow brand of globalism, dressed up as 'progressive' attitudes to the oppressed, seemed to fool a lot of people who presumably didn't read much outside the MSN or took their information from corrupt NGOs and ersatz socialist alliances that actually work as a front for the establishment. So how is Trump doing now?
When it became obvious that the establishment elite and the establishment press that support the growth lobby and which supported Hillary Clinton were dead against Trump, I became interested in what Trump had to say, despite the fact that he is an obscenely wealthy property developer. If so many powerful and destructive organisations and people hated him, astonishingly he might not be all bad.  As a member of the alternative press, I was naturally interested in any major politician who was able to go round and over the MSN. This interest sent me straight to the videos of Trump's rallies, where I could check what the MSN alleged and what actually went down.
When the mainstream media were predicting that Hillary would win, I was thinking they obviously were not listening to Trump's speeches, they had not seen the size of his audiences or his connection with them. For some reason they totally underestimated the importance for most ordinary people of the subjects Trump commented on. When the press called him stupid, but he overcame all the major obstacles in his way, including the mainstream press, I thought, this guy is a genius. You would have to be stupid to think otherwise.
Actually listening to Trump's rallies showed the man to be an exceptional communicator. In fact, he is obviously exceptional in very many ways: exceptional stamina, exceptional ability to think independently and to hold his own against would-be peer pressure. Maybe, I hoped against hope, he would also be an exceptional property developer with an exceptional sense of proportion who would use what he knew about the workings of the international development and growth lobby to bring their juggernaut to a halt. Because the juggernaut, composed of organised networks of corporations and investment is so huge that it has integrated actual governments and political parties. Watching as these networks vastly increased with the establishment of the internet, I have often felt that 'resistance is hopeless', continuing to resist nonetheless. Maybe, I thought, James Sinnamon, who built candobetter.net website, is correct after all that exceptional leaders can still exist and somehow pull people together despite the corporations and the corrupting influence of the super-charged monetary economy, the deep state and the military-industrial-mass-media complex. Trump's use of twitter seemed to illustrate this possibility.
Granted Trump was talking about bulding a trillion dollars worth of new infrastructure, which is typical developer speak, but he wasn't talking up population, which is developer speech, and he was localising this project to the United States, which he correctly identified as greatly in need of new infrastructure. The former administrations were typical growth lobby servants, creating opportunities through war and globalisation, for privateers to profit from disaster management, sending in the bulldozers to clear the bodies and the rubble, cranes to stack the concrete blocks and financiers to organise the foreign debts.
In contrast to Hillary Clinton's war drums, globalism and dog-whistles to disaster capitalists,Trump talked about reducing foreign intervention and getting along with Russia and Syria. He wanted to halt illegal immigration, in part because it was taking local jobs. This is is well-established, particularly in regard to black jobs being replaced by illegal and legal hispanic workers. He has noted the associated growing poverty of black communities and the infrastructure decay in former manufacturing cities with large populations of black Americans.
He is not in favour of increasing the minimum wage. My understanding is that he believes the US could not compete with international labour prices if wages were increased there, but he seems to believe he will create a more propitious local/national situation by reducing imported slave-labour, decreasing taxes to attract investment in manufacturing, and increasing taxes on manufactures from corporations that have left the country in search of cheaper labour. In the event that Trump succeeds in this economic shoring-up program, using local labour, this would create a much better bargaining environment for local labour. It would also improve opportunities for small to medium businesses which have difficulty competing with international corporations that can cherry-pick labour, taxes, environment and other laws and country.
This is not your classical dirigiste economy, which workers traditionally fight for, with government influencing wages and living costs, but the above manner of improving work opportunity and security is a way of make wage increases possible. If immigration (legal and illegal) is also noticeably reduced and population growth falls back, inflationary pressure on fuel, water and housing would be reduced, thus cutting the cost of living and the need for higher wages. Concommitant security of work and housing tenure would be expected to increase democratic activity by freeing large quantities of people from energy and confidence-absorbing precarity. I have suggested and so have others that globalism with its open-borders policy on labour is a way of keeping people too precarious to engage politically.
Trump has been lambasted by 'liberals', MSN, Soros, et al for trying to stop the entry of terrorists via large streams of refugees from seven countries deemed by the previous administration to be a terrorist risk. Yet those previous administrations promoted and legitimated mass fear of terrorism when they engaged in very dubious wars to 'defeat terrorism' (thereby vastly increasing terrorist takfiri warriors) and implemented a swathe of new laws that have vastly reduced legal civil rights in the United States and other countries, in order to 'prevent terrorism'.
Astoundingly, super-businessman Trump wanted to get rid of the Trans Pacific Partnership, which threatened sovereign rights to control laws and conditions for environment, employment, labour movement and legal process.
Even more encouraging, after Trump was elected, he has immediately attempted to carry out his policy promises, starting with stopping America's involvement in the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP). Yet the MSN hardly paused to report this and the "Left" simply ignored this gob-smacking promise-keeping and democratic event. The reason seems obvious: those in control of the MSN and the 'voice' of the "Left" are globalists and they were not really against the TPP.
Trump, who had a brother who died of alcoholism, is a non-drinker, who seems to understand rather than judge addiction. His political philosophy could largely be summed up as, "Look for the similarities, not the differences," which is core Alcoholics Anonymous. Identity politics is the opposite of this as in, 'Look for the differences, not the similarities'.
From many previous comments and interviews, it was obvious that Trump was not your typical Republican or puritan. I think he is highly sexed and ribald, but he seems to value the women in his life, showing great respect for his daughters. It was tragic for those who would be adversely affected that Trump had to agree to anti-abortion demands, but that was necessary to obtain Mike Pence's support which was crucial for any chance at winning the presidency. I can remember the absolute terror of the threat of pregnancy in a country and a time when abortion and contraception were both very difficult and expensive to obtain. The reversal of Roe vs Wade is not all that it is cracked up to be, but the right-wing Christian attitude to abortion, indeed towards sex, is daunting.
One of those policies that Trump announced in advance was to beef up the military, at the same time as he said he was against foreign interventions. Whilst I can understand Trump's reduction of funding and staffing of the US Environmental protection agency and other places where his enemies are numerous - and he said that he would - what is most concerning about Donald Trump is his plan - announced only a day ago - to so vastly increase military spending. He says that it is for 'public safety and national security'. Does that mean that it will not be used to 'intervene' in the Middle East and elsewhere, but more for defense? He plans to upgrade outdated military technology. It is true that the United State's military technology is quite out of date. Russia, which spends far less than the United States already spends on its military, nonetheless has superior technology and is said to be able to defend itself against any US missile attack. However Russia has not attacked any country for years, unless you count the voluntary annexation of Crimea and backing separatists in Georgia in a move that ended up with the creation of South Ossetia as a separate state. These moves were understandable defensive responses to political incursion from EU/NATO which threatened Russian access to important trade-routes for oil and gas transport. We should ask the question: Which countries, if any, threaten the United States with war? Another consideration that might underlie Trump's boosting of the national military might be to take it back from private outsourcing. Or it might not. For several presidencies - in fact, since the invasion of Iraq - the military has been outsourced as a for profit to corporations like Haliburton. (See Video & transcript: Prof Sean McFate on rising danger of mercenary armies forming corporate military states or running amuck) These corporate entitities have replaced government paid soldiers with mercenaries. There have been fears that corporations and mercenaries are more likely than national armies to support perpetual war. The corporate entities have not been answerable to the United States public or their courts and are suspected of pillaging countries and reconstructing governments to their own advantage. (See Naomi Klein on 'disaster capitalism', for example: http://www.naomiklein.org/shock-doctrine/resources/disaster-capitalism-in-action/tags/iraq.) However Trump's most recent pronouncements about putting boots on the ground in the Middle East have sounded as if he has fallen into the grip of the perpetual war military. Unless he carries through with remarks about cooperating with the Syrian and Russian governments to eradicate Daesh. (See https://sputniknews.com/military/201702271051092603-us-military-strategy-troops-syria/.) Will Trump surprise us with his exceptionality again here?
TRUMP: "We've pursued this rebuilding in the hopes that we will never have to use this military. And, I will tell you that is my - I would be so happy if we never had to use this - but our country will never have had a military like the military we're about to build and rebuild." Reassuring remarks made by Trump as he gave his speech to joint session of Congress, February 28, 2017
With regard to climate change and carbon gases, war is probably the biggest contributor, but it is never officially counted. The Obama regime increased wars whilst increasing talk of C02 reduction. (See http://www.naomiklein.org/articles/2009/12/fight-climate-change-not-wars.) For all its environmental agencies and rhetoric, it increased fracking and local fossil-fuel operations as well. It was open-borders oriented, which meant perpetual increase in population and demand for energy in the United States. What Trump's military policy had on the side of the environment was his stated willingness to get on with the rest of the world and refrain from war and his willingness to reduce immigration, which is the major contributor to population growth in the United States.
 For an in-depth analysis of some important craven activities of the Clinton Foundation and other NGOs in Haiti after that big earthquake, read Jonathan M. Katz, The Big Truck That Went By: How the World Came to Save Haiti and Left Behind a Disaster, Palgrave McMillan, 2013. Then you have the White Helmets, Doctors without Borders, Human Rights Watch, various "Greens", GetUp, Change.org, MoveOn.org, all marketed by the mainstream, funded by the establishment, justifying foreign interventions and often promoting open borders. It is amazing how few people look beyond nice labels. In fact, this is probably a skill acquired in later adulthood, from life experience.
 Murdoch Press has been a bit of an exception to this rule. Murdoch could be looking to buy up cheap some of the 'fake news' media that Trump has 'trumped' and he probably also sees Trump's enemy, Soros, as a competitor for press influence.
 http://newamericamedia.org/2016/06/growing-temp-industry-shuts-out-black-workers-exploits-latinos.php http://www.fairus.org/issue/immigration-and-job-displacement Here too is a general breakdown in employment trends for various 'races': https://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2013/11/the-workforce-is-even-more-divided-by-race-than-you-think/281175/ And here is a history of black/white employment trends published in the 1970s which shows that there was a period when black and white employment rates were similar due to protection from one undercutting the other, but then that employers started to relocate overseas or to import foreign labour in order to undercut black and white. Edna Bonacich, "Advanced Capitalism and Black/White Race Relations in the United States: A Split Labor Market Interpretation," American Sociological Review, Vol. 41, No. 1 (Feb., 1976), pp. 34-51 http://www.jstor.org/stable/2094371
During the US presidential inauguration ceremonies Trump's elegant and disciplined clan members appeared brave in the face of multiple violent threats, fanned by a jilted mainstream press, for example, CNN's, "Disaster could put Obama cabinet member in oval office." Beside their chubbier leader, beaming like John Candy, the females of the Trump clan, with their gazelle-like legs and long hair, flawless skin and physiques, seemed like avatars from another world.
A correspondent commented to me this morning on her perception that the Age and the ABC underreported aspects of President Trump's inauguration. "Melania really did look stunning, but there was a lack of positive comment re Melania’s dress, a lack of any sympathetic camera work on her. This was in contrast to the gushing over Michelle Obama eight years ago. It is to do with the level of warmth. I felt that, with the Trumps, the commentary and footage were overly cold and objective compared with the same event eight years ago. In fact, I found this article, which bore out my feelings: #10;http://fashionista.com/2016/11/melania-trump-fashion"> "How we plan on covering (or not covering) Melania Trump's fashion choices". It shows that there has even been a politicisation of reporting on fashion with regard to the Trumps."
Indeed, the New York Times, which does gives some quite interesting fashion details on who dresses the Trump entourage and the semiotics of their costumes, also reports in the embedded video, on how a number of fashion publications have snubbed the Trumps because of a perception that Donald Trump is racist. This is based on his attitude to protecting jobs for Americans, illegal immigrated violent offenders and immigration from source countries for ISIS - all defensible positions even if you don't happen to agree with them. They do not make Trump racist.
But the fight is really nationalist vs globalist. The globalist open-borders exiting US regime pursued the most racist of wars in the Middle East and now it is going after Trump, the anti-Soros. The out-going regime and the press that supports them are heavily sponsored by Soros who also has succeeded in diverting many organisations from their original agendas and getting them to push for open borders, an agenda that runs against civil rights and assists globalisation. We can see this in the Women's marches today, 22 January 2017, where feminism has apparently been coopted to incoherently support globalism as well as protest more reasonably on behalf of abortion-rights. (See "George Soros big loser in US elections funds hi-jacking of feminism for globalist agenda."
Am I the only one whom Trump's goofy smile reminds of John Candy, the charming Canadian comedian who died in March 1994 and who played many eccentric characters? There is something in the eyes and the mouth and a way of moving, but perhaps it is mostly that Trump appears larger than life and is funny and outrageous, like Candy. "If I was elected, you would be in jail, Hillary!"
Admittedly, if you don't think there is anything funny about politics, and particularly about Donald Trump, you might not see the humour and you might hate the charisma, but you still might agree that the 2017 US election had elements of a National Lampoon comedy that Candy might have played in. The statuesque wife, who looks half her age, the lanky daughters displayed on stage like two legged-giraffes in designer gowns and the pizza-gate-lolita-island scandals surrounding the departing US regime and Donald, larger than life, prevailing, assisted by his unforgettable hair.
 Second Presidential debate dialogue:
HILLARY CLINTON: “It’s just awfully good that someone with the temperament of Donald Trump is not in charge of the law in our country,” Mrs. Clinton observed.
TRUMP: “Because you’d be in jail.”
There is a humanitarian catastrophe unfolding in Syria and the "western" media ignore it. On December 22 al-Qaeda aligned Takfiris in the Wadi Barada valley shut down the main water supply for the Syrian capital Damascus. Since then the city and some 5-6 million living in and around it have to survive on emergency water distributions by the Syrian government. That is barely enough for people to drink - no washing, no showers and no water dependent production is possible. Article originally published at Moon of Alabama. Sources of pictures and enlargements also available there.
This shut down is part of a wider, seemingly coordinated strategy to deprive all government held areas of utility supplies. Two days ago the Islamic State shut down a major water intake for Aleppo from the Euphrates. High voltage electricity masts on lines feeding Damascus have been destroyed and repair teams, unlike before, denied access. Gas supplies to parts of Damascus are also cut. A similar tactic was used by the Zionist terrorists of the Haganah who in 1947/48 poisoned and blew up the water mains and oil pipelines to Palestinian Haifa.
Wadi Barada is a river valley some 10 miles west of Damascus at the mountain range between Lebanon and Syria. It has been in the hands of local insurgents since 2012. The area was since loosely surrounded by Syrian government forces and their allies from Hizbullah.
Two springs in the area provide the water for Damascus which is treated locally and then pumped through pipelines into the city's distribution network. Since the early 1990s there is a low level conflict over the water diversion of the Barada river valley to the ever growing Damascus. The drought over the last years has intensified the problems. Local agriculture of the water rich valley had to cut back for lack of water as this was pumped into the city. But many families from the valley moved themselves into the city or have relatives living there.
The local rebels had kept the water running for the city. Al-Qaeda aligned groups have been in the area for some time. A propaganda video distributed by them and taken in the area showed (pic) the choreographed mass execution of Syrian government soldiers.
After the eastern part of the city of Aleppo was liberated by Syrian government forces, the local rebels and inhabitants in the Barada river valley were willing to reconcile with the Syrian government. But the al-Qaeda Takfiris disagreed and took over. The area is since under full al-Qaeda control and thereby outside of the recent ceasefire agreement.
On December 22 the water supply to Damascus was suddenly contaminated with diesel fuel and no longer consumable. A day later Syrian government forces started an operation to regain the area and to reconstitute the water supplies.
Photos and a video on social media (since inaccessible but I saw them when they appeared) showed the water treatment facility rigged with explosives. On Dec 27th the facility was blown up and partly destroyed.
Suddenly new organized "civil" media operations of, allegedly, locals in the area spread misinformation to "western" media. "There are 100,000 civilians under siege in Wadi Barada!" In reality the whole area once had, according to the last peacetime census, some 20,000 inhabitants. The White Helmets propaganda organization now also claims to be in the area. "The government had bombed the water treatment facility," the propaganda groups claimed.
That is a. not plausible and b. inconsistent with the pictures of the destroyed facility. These show a collapse of the main support booms of the roof but no shrapnel impact at all. A bomb breaking through the roof and exploding would surely have left pocket marks all over the place. The damage, in my judgement, occurred from well designed, controlled explosions inside the facility.
Some insurgents posted pictures of themselves proudly standing within the destroyed facility and making victory signs.
There is more such cheer-leading by insurgents on social media. Why when they claim that the government bombed the place?
On December 29 the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs issued an alarm about the water crisis:
The United Nations is alarmed that four million inhabitants in Damascus and surrounding areas have been cut off from the main water supply since 22 December. Two primary sources of drinking water- Wadi Barada and Ain-el-Fijah-which provide clean and safe water for 70 percent of the population in and around Damascus are not functioning, due to deliberate targeting resulting in the damaged infrastructure.
One of the two springs, Al-Feejeh, has now been retaken by the Syrian army. 1,300 civilians from Ain AlFeejeh, the nearby town with the treatment facility, have fled to the government held areas and were taken in by the Syrian Red Cross. The other spring and the treatment facility are still in Takfiri hands. The government has said that it will need some ten days to repair the system after the Syrian army has gained control of the facilities. That will still take some time.
Western media have hardly taken notice of the water crisis in Damascus and their coverage seems to actively avoid it. A search for Barada on the Washington Post website brings up one original piece from December 30 about the freshly negotiated ceasefire. The 6th paragraph says:
Airstrikes pounded opposition-held villages and towns in the strategically-important Barada Valley outside Damascus, activists said, prompting rebels to threaten to withdraw their compliance with a nationwide truce brokered by Russia and Turkey last week.
Then follow 16 paragraphs on other issues. Only at the very end of the piece comes this (mis-)information:
The Barada Valley is the primary source of water for the capital and its surrounding region. The government assault has coincided with a severe water shortage in Damascus since Dec. 22. Images from the valley’s Media Center indicate its Ain al-Fijeh spring and water processing facility have been destroyed in airstrikes. The government says rebels spoiled the water source with diesel fuel, forcing it to cut supplies to the capital.
On December 29 a piece by main WaPo anti-Syria propagandist Liz Sly did not mention the water crisis or the Barada valley at all.
The New York Times links a Reuters pieces about the UN alarm about the water crisis. But I find nothing in its own reporting that even mentions the water crisis. One piece on December 31 refers shortly to attacks on Wadi Baradi by government forces at its very end.
A Guardian search for Barada only comes up with a piece from today mixed from agency reports. The headlines say "Hundreds of Syrians flee as Assad's forces bomb Barada valley rebels". The piece itself says that they flee to the government side. In it the Syrian Observatory (MI-6) operation in Britain confirms that al-Qaeda rules the area which "Civil society organisations on the ground" deny. Only the very last of the 12 paragraph piece mentions the capital:
The Barada valley is the primary source of water for the capital and its surrounding region. The government assault has coincided with a severe water shortage in Damascus since 22 December. The government says rebels spoiled the water source with diesel fuel, forcing it to cut supplies to the capital.
Surely a few people "fleeing" (to the government side) "as Assad's forces bombs" are way more important than 5 million people in Damascus without access to water. That the treatment facility is destroyed seems also unimportant.
All the above papers have been extremely concerned about every scratch to any propaganda pimp who had claimed to be in then rebel held east-Aleppo. They now show no concern at all for 5 million Syrians in Damascus who have been without water for 10 days and will likely be so for the rest of the month.
Posted by b on January 2, 2017 at 02:42 PM | Permalink