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Secular stagnation is a term proposed by Keynesian economist Alvin Hansen back in the 1930s to explain the USA dismal economic performance during this period. The period in which sluggish growth and output, and employment levels well below potential, coincide with a problematically low (even negative) real interest rates even in the face of the extraordinarily easy monetary policy. Later a similar phenomenon occurred in Japan. that's why it is often called called Japanification of the economy. Secular stagnation returned to the USA in full force after the financial crisis of 2008 (so called The Long Recession), so this is the second time the USA society experience the same socio-economic phenomenon.
Formally it can be defined as any stagnation that lasts substantially longer then the business cycle (and dominates the business cycle induced variations of economic activities), the suppression of economic performance for a long (aka secular) period. It also can be viewed as the crisis of demand, when demand became systemically weak (which under neoliberalism is ensured by redistribution of wealth up).
The global stagnation we are experiencing is the logical result of the dominance of neoliberalism and a sign of its crisis an a ideology. It is somewhat similar to the crisis of Bolshevik's ideology in the USSR in 60th when everybody realized that the existing society cannot fulfill the key promise of higher living standards. And that over centralization of economic life naturally leads to stagnation. The analogy does not ends here, but this point is the most important.
Neoliberalism replaced over-centralization (with iron fist one party rule) with over-financialization (with iron fist rule of financial oligarchy), with generally the same result as for the economy ( In other words neoliberalism like bolshevism is equal to economic stagnation; extremes meet). The end of cheap oil did not help iether. In a sense neoliberalism might be viewed as the elite reaction to the end of cheap oil, when it became clear that there are not enough cookies for everyone.
This growth in the financial sector's profits has not been an accident; it is the result of engineered shift in the elite thinking, which changed government policies. The central question of politics is, in my view, "Who has a right to live and who does not". In the answer to this question, neoliberal subscribes to Social Darwinism: ordinary citizens should be given much less rather than more social protection. Such policies would have been impossible in 50th and 60th (A Short History of Neo-liberalism)
In 1945 or 1950, if you had seriously proposed any of the ideas and policies in today's standard neo-liberal toolkit, you would have been laughed off the stage at or sent off to the insane asylum. At least in the Western countries, at that time, everyone was a Keynesian, a social democrat or a social-Christian democrat or some shade of Marxist.
The idea that the market should be allowed to make major social and political decisions; the idea that the State should voluntarily reduce its role in the economy, or that corporations should be given total freedom, that trade unions should be curbed and citizens given much less rather than more social protection--such ideas were utterly foreign to the spirit of the time. Even if someone actually agreed with these ideas, he or she would have hesitated to take such a position in public and would have had a hard time finding an audience.
And this change in government polices was achieved in classic Bolsheviks coup d'état way, when yoiu first create the Party of "professional neoliberal revolutionaries". Who then push for this change and "occupy" strategic places like economics departments at the universities, privately funded think tanks, MSM, and then subvert one or both major parties. The crisis of "New Deal Capitalism" helped, but without network of think tanks and rich donors, the triumph of neoliberalism in the USA would have been impossible:
...one explanation for this triumph of neo-liberalism and the economic, political, social and ecological disasters that go with it is that neo-liberals have bought and paid for their own vicious and regressive "Great Transformation". They have understood, as progressives have not, that ideas have consequences. Starting from a tiny embryo at the University of Chicago with the philosopher-economist Friedrich von Hayek and his students like Milton Friedman at its nucleus, the neo-liberals and their funders have created a huge international network of foundations, institutes, research centers, publications, scholars, writers and public relations hacks to develop, package and push their ideas and doctrine relentlessly.
Most economists are acutely aware of the increasing role in economic life of financial markets, institutions and operations and the pursuit of prifits via excotic instruments such as derivatives (all this constituted financialization). This dominant feature of neoliberalism has huge the re-distributional implications, huge effects on the US economy, international dimensions and monetary system, depth and longevity of financial crises and unapt policy responses to them.
They have built this highly efficient ideological cadre because they understand what the Italian Marxist thinker Antonio Gramsci was talking about when he developed the concept of cultural hegemony. If you can occupy peoples' heads, their hearts and their hands will follow.
I do not have time to give you details here, but believe me, the ideological and promotional work of the right has been absolutely brilliant. They have spent hundreds of millions of dollars, but the result has been worth every penny to them because they have made neo-liberalism seem as if it were the natural and normal condition of humankind. No matter how many disasters of all kinds the neo-liberal system has visibly created, no matter what financial crises it may engender, no matter how many losers and outcasts it may create, it is still made to seem inevitable, like an act of God, the only possible economic and social order available to us.
Neoliberalism naturally leads to secular stagnation due to redistribution of wealth up. which undermines purchasing power of the 99%, or more correctly 99.9 of the population. In the USA this topic became hotly debated theme in establishment circles after Summers speech in 2013. Unfortunately it was suppressed in Presidential campaign of 2016. Please note that Sanders speaks about Wall Street shenanigans, but not about ideology of neoliberalism. No candidates tried to address this problem of "self-colonization" of the USA, which is probably crucial to "making America great again" instead of continued slide into what is called "banana republic" coined by American writer O. Henry (William Sydney Porter 1862–1910). Here is how Wikipedia described the term:
Banana republic or banana state is a pejorative political science term for politically unstable countries in Latin America whose economies are largely dependent on exporting a limited-resource product, e.g. bananas. It typically has stratified social classes, including a large, impoverished working class and a ruling plutocracy of business, political, and military elites. This politico-economic oligarchy controls the primary-sector productions to exploit the country's economy.
... ... ...
In economics, a banana republic is a country operated as a commercial enterprise for private profit, effected by a collusion between the State and favoured monopolies, in which the profit derived from the private exploitation of public lands is private property, while the debts incurred thereby are a public responsibility.
This topic is of great importance to the US elite because the USA is the citadel of neoliberalism. It also suggest that the natural way neoliberal economic system based on increasing of the level of inequality (redistribution of wealth up) should behave: after the initial economic boom (like in case of steroids use) caused by financialization of economy (as well as dissolution of the USSR), helped by off-shoring of manufacturing, the destructive effects of this temporary boost come into foreground. Redistribution of wealth up increases inequality which after a certain delay starts to undercuts domestic demand. It also tilts the demand more toward conspicuous consumption (note the boom of luxury cars sales in the USA).
But after inequality reaches certain critical threshold the economy faces extended period of low growth reflecting persistently weak private demand (purchasing power of lower 90% of population). People who mostly have low level service economy jobs (aka MC-jobs) can't buy that much. Earlier giants of American capitalism like Ford understood that, but Wall Street sharks do not and does not want. They operate under principle "Après nous le déluge" ("After us, the deluge").
An economic cycle enters recession when total spending falls below expected by producers and they realize that production level is too high relative to demand. What we have under neoliberalism is Marx's crisis of overproduction on a new level. At this level it is intrinsically connected with the parasitic nature of complete financialization of the economy. The focus on monetary policy and the failure to enact fiscal policy options is the key structural defect of neoliberalism ideology and can't be changed unless neoliberal ideology is abandoned. Which probably will not happen unless another huge crisis hits the USA. That might not happen soon. Bolshevism lasted more then 70 years. If we assume that the "age of neoliberalism" started at 1973 with Pinochet coup d'état in Chile, neoliberalism as a social system is just 43 years old (as of 2016). It still has some "time to live"(TTL) in zombies state due to the principle first formulated by Margaret Thatcher as TINA ("There Is No Alternative") -- the main competitor, bolshevism, was discredited by the collapse of the USSR and China leadership adoption of neoliberalism. While Soviet leadership simply abandoned the sinking ship and became Nouveau riche in a neoliberal society that followed, Chinese elite managed to preserved at least outer framework of the Marxist state and the political control of the Communist party (not clear for how long). But there was a neoliberal transformation of Chinese economy, initiated, paradoxically, by the Chinese Communist Party.
Currently, no other ideology, including old "New Deal" ideology can compete with neoliberal ideology, although things started to change with Sanders campaign in the USA on the left and Trump campaign on the right. Most of what we see as a negative reaction to neoliberalism in Europe generally falls into the domain of cultural nationalism.
The 2008 financial crisis, while discrediting neoliberalism as an ideology (in the same way as WWII discredited Bolshevism), was clearly not enough for the abandonment of this ideology. Actually neoliberalism proved to be remarkably resilient after this crisis. Some researchers claim that it entered "zombie state" and became more bloodthirsty and ruthless.
There is also religious overtones of neoliberalism which increase its longevity (similar to Trotskyism, and neoliberalism can be called "Trotskyism for rich"). So, from a small, unpopular sect with virtually no influence, neo-liberalism has become the major world religion with its dogmatic doctrine, its priesthood, its law-giving institutions and perhaps most important of all, its hell for heathen and sinners who dare to contest the revealed truth. Like in most cults adherents became more fanatical believers after the prophecy did not materialized. The USA elite tried partially alleviate this problem by resorting to military Keynesianism as a supplementary strategy. But while military budget was raised to unprecedented levels, it can't reverse the tendency. Persistent high output gap is now a feature of the US economy, not a transitory state.
But there is another factor in play here: combination of peak (aka "plato" ;-) oil and established correlation of the speed of economic growth and prices on fossil fuels and first of all on oil. Oil provides more than a third of the energy we use on the planet every day, more than any other energy source (How High Oil Prices Will Permanently Cap Economic Growth - Bloomberg). It is dominant fuel for transport and in this role it is very difficult to replace.
That means that a substantial increase of price of oil acts as a fundamental limiting factor for economic growth. And "end of cheap oil" simply means that any increase of supply of oil to support growing population on the planet and economic growth now requires higher prices. Which naturally undermine economic growth, unless massive injection of currency are instituted. that probably was the factor that prevented slide of the US economy into the recession in 2009-2012. Such a Catch-22.
Growth dampening potential of over $100-a-barrel oil is now a well established factor. Unfortunately, the reverse is not true. Drop of oil price to below $50 as happened in late 2014 and first half of 2015 did not increase growth rate of the USA economy. It might simply prevented it from sliding it into another phase of Great Recession. Moreover when economies activity drops, less oil is needed. Enter permanent stagnation.
Also there is not much oil left that can be profitably extracted at prices below $80. So the current oil price slump is a temporary phenomenon, whether it was engineered, or is a mixture of factors including temporary overcapacity . Sooner or later oil prices should return to level "above $80", as only at this level of oil price capital expenditures in new production make sense. That des not mean that oil prices can't be suppressed for another year or even two, but as Herbert Stein aptly noted "If something cannot go on forever, it will stop,"
Imagine the alien spaceship landed somewhere in the world. There would be denial, disbelief, fear, and great uncertainty for the future. World leaders would struggle to make sense of the events. The landing would change everything.
The secular stagnation (aka "end of permanent growth") is a very similar event. This also is the event that has potential to change everything, but it is much more prolonged in time and due to this less visible ("boiling frog effect"). Also this is not a single event, but a long sequence of related events that probably might last several decades (as Japan had shown) or even centuries. The current "Great Recession" might be just a prolog to those events. It is clearly incompatible with capitalism as a mode of production, although capitalism as a social system demonstrated over the years tremendous adaptability and it is too early to write it down completely. Also no clear alternatives exists.
A very slow recovery and the secular stagnation is characteristic of economies suffering from a balance-sheet recession (aka crisis of overproduction), as forcefully argued by Nomura’s Richard Koo and other economists. The key point is that private investment is down, not because of “policy uncertainty” or “increased regulation”, but because business-sector expectations about future profitability have become dramatically depressed — and rationally so — in a context characterized by heavy indebtedness (of both households and corporations). As businesses see the demand falls they scale down production which creates negative feedback look and depresses demand further.
|The key point is that private investment is down, not because of “policy uncertainty” or “increased regulation”, but because business-sector expectations about future profitability have become dramatically depressed — and rationally so — in a context characterized by heavy indebtedness (of both households and corporations). As businesses see the demand falls they scale down production which creates negative feedback look and depresses demand further.|
There are at least five different hypothesis about the roots of secular stagnation:
Summers’s remarks and articles were followed by an explosion of debate concerning “secular stagnation”—a term commonly associated with Alvin Hansen’s work from the 1930s to ’50s, and frequently employed in Monthly Review to explain developments in the advanced economies from the 1970s to the early 2000s.2 Secular stagnation can be defined as the tendency to long-term (or secular) stagnation in the private accumulation process of the capitalist economy, manifested in rising unemployment and excess capacity and a slowdown in overall economic growth. It is often referred to simply as “stagnation.” There are numerous theories of secular stagnation but most mainstream theories hearken back to Hansen, who was Keynes’s leading early follower in the United States, and who derived the idea from various suggestions in Keynes’s General Theory of Employment, Interest and Money (1936).
Responses to Summers have been all over the map, reflecting both the fact that the capitalist economy has been slowing down, and the role in denying it by many of those seeking to legitimate the system. Stanford economist John B. Taylor contributed a stalwart denial of secular stagnation in the Wall Street Journal. In contrast, Paul Krugman, who is closely aligned with Summers, endorsed secular stagnation on several occasions in the New York Times. Other notable economists such as Brad DeLong and Michael Spence soon weighed in with their own views.3
Three prominent economists have new books directly addressing the phenomena of secular stagnation.4 It has now been formally modelled by Brown University economists Gauti Eggertsson and Neil Mehrotra, while Thomas Piketty’s high-profile book bases its theoretical argument and policy recommendations on stagnation tendencies of capitalism. This explosion of interest in the Summers/Krugman version of stagnation has also resulted in a collection of articles and debate, edited by Coen Teulings and Richard Baldwin, entitled Secular Stagnation: Facts, Causes and Cures.5
Seven years after “The Great Financial Crisis” of 2007–2008, the recovery remains sluggish. It can be argued that the length and depth of the Great Financial Crisis is a rather ordinary cyclical crisis. However, the monetary and fiscal measures to combat it were extraordinary. This has resulted in a widespread sense that there will not be a return to “normal.” Summers/Krugman’s resurrection within the mainstream of Hansen’s concept of secular stagnation is an attempt to explain how extraordinary policy measures following the 2007–2008 crisis merely led to the stabilization of a lethargic, if not comatose, economy.
But what do these economists mean by secular stagnation? If stagnation is a reality, does their conception of it make current policy tools obsolete? And what is the relationship between the Summers/Krugman notion of secular stagnation and the monopoly-finance capital theory?
... ... ...
In “secular stagnation,” the term “secular” is intended to differentiate between the normal business cycle and long-term, chronic stagnation. A long-term slowdown in the economy over decades can be seen as superimposed on the regular business cycle, reflecting the trend rather than the cycle.
In the general language of economics, secular stagnation, or simply stagnation, thus implies that the long-run potential economic growth has fallen, constituting the first pillar of MISS. This has been most forcefully argued for by Robert Gordon, as well as Garry Kasparov and Peter Thiel.6 Their argument is that the cumulative growth effect of current (and future) technological changes will be far weaker than in the past. Moreover, demographic changes place limits on the development of “human capital.” The focus is on technology, which orthodox economics generally sees as a factor external to the economy and on the supply-side (i.e., in relation to cost). Gordon’s position is thus different than that of moderate Keynesians like Summers and Krugman, who focus on demand-side contradictions of the system.
In Gordon’s supply-side, technocratic view, there are forces at work that will limit the growth in productive input and the efficiency of these inputs. This pillar of MISS emphasizes that it is constraints on the aggregate supply-side of the economy that have diminished absolutely the long-run potential growth.
The second pillar of MISS, also a supply-side view, goes back at least to Joseph Schumpeter. To explain the massive slump of 1937, Schumpeter maintained there had emerged a growing anti-business climate. Moreover, he contended that the rise of the modern corporation had displaced the role of the entrepreneur; the anti-business spirit had a repressive effect on entrepreneurs’ confidence and optimism.7 Today, this second pillar of MISS has been resurrected suggestively by John B. Taylor, who argues the poor recovery is best “explained by policy uncertainty” and “increased regulation” that is unfavorable to business. Likewise, Baker, Bloom, and Davis have forcefully argued that political uncertainty can hold back private investment and economic growth.8
Summers and Krugman, as Keynesians, emphasize a third MISS pillar, derived from Keynes’s famous liquidity trap theory, which contends that the “full-employment real interest rate” has declined in recent years. Indeed, both Summers and Krugman demonstrate that real interest rates have declined over recent decades, therefore moving from an exogenous explanation (as in pillars one and two) to a more endogenous explanation of secular stagnation.9 The ultimate problem here is lack of investment demand, such that, in order for net investment to occur at all, interest rates have to be driven to near zero or below. Their strong argument is that there are now times when negative real interest rates are needed to equate saving and investment with full employment.
However, “interest rates are not fully flexible in modern economies”—in other words, market-determined interest rate adjustments chronically fail to achieve full employment. Summers contends there are financial forces that prohibit the real interest rate from becoming negative; hence, full employment cannot be realized.10
Some theorists contend that there has been demographic structural shifts increasing the supply of saving, thus decreasing interest rates. These shifts include an increase in life expectancy, a decrease in retirement age, and a decline in the growth rate of population.
Others, including Summers, point out that stagnation in capital formation (or accumulation) can be attributed to a decrease in the demand for loanable funds for investment. One mainstream explanation offered for this is that today’s new technologies and companies, such as Google, Microsoft, Amazon, and Facebook, require far less capital investment. Another hypothesis is that there has been an important decrease in the demand for loanable funds, although they argue this is due to a preference for safe assets. These factors can function together to keep the real interest rate very low. The policy implication of secular low interest rates is that monetary policy is more difficult to implement effectually; during a recession, it is weakened and can even become ineffectual.
Edward Glaeser, focusing on “secular joblessness,” places severe doubt on the first pillar of MISS, but then makes a very important additional argument. Glaeser rejects the notion that there has been a slowdown in technological innovation; innovation is simply “unrelenting.” Likewise, he is far less concerned with secular low real interest rates, which may be far more cyclical. “Therefore,” contends Glaeser, “stagnation is likely to be temporary.”
Nonetheless, Glaeser underscores secular joblessness, and thus the dysfunction of U.S. labor markets constitutes a fourth pillar of MISS: “The dysfunction in the labour market is real and serious, and seems unlikely to be solved by any obvious economic trend.” Somehow, then, the problem is due to a misfit of skills or “human capital” on the side of workers, who thus need retraining. “The massive secular trend in joblessness is a terrible social problem for the US, and one that the country must try to address” with targeted policy.11 Glaeser’s argument for the dysfunction of U.S. labor markets is based on recession-generated shocks to employment, specifically of less-skilled U.S. workers. After 1970, when workers lost their job, the damage to human capital became permanent. In short, when human capital depreciates due to unemployment, overall abilities and “talent” are “lost” permanently. This may be because the skills required in today’s economy need to be constantly practiced to be retained. Thus, there is a ratchet-like effect in joblessness caused by recessions, whereby recession-linked joblessness is not fully reversed during recoveries—and all this is related to skills (the human capital of the workers), and not to capital itself. According to Glaeser, the ratchet-like effect of recession-linked joblessness is further exacerbated by the U.S. social-safety net, which has “made joblessness less painful and increased the incentives to stay out of work.”12
Glaeser contends that, if his secular joblessness argument is correct, the macroeconomic fiscal interventions argued for by Summers and Krugman are off-base.13 Instead, the safety net should be redesigned in order to encourage rather than discourage people from working. Additionally, incentives to work need to be radically improved through targeted investments in education and workforce training.14 Such views within the mainstream debate, emphasizing exogenous factors, are generally promoted by freshwater (conservative) rather than saltwater (liberal) economists. Thus, they tend to emphasize supply-side or cost factors.
The fifth pillar of MISS contends that output and productivity growth are stagnant due to a failure to invest in infrastructure, education, and training. Nearly all versions of MISS subscribe to some version of this, although there are both conservative and liberal variations. Barry Eichengreen underscores this pillar and condemns recent U.S. fiscal developments that have “cut to the bone” federal government spending devoted to infrastructure, education, and training.
The fifth pillar of MISS necessarily reflects an imbalance between public and private investment spending. Many theorists maintain that the imbalance between public and private investment spending, hence secular stagnation, “is not inevitable.” For example, Eichengreen contends if “the US experiences secular stagnation, the condition will be self-inflicted. It will reflect the country’s failure to address its infrastructure, education and training needs. It will reflect its failure to…support aggregate demand in an effort to bring the long-term unemployed back into the labour market.”15
The sixth pillar of MISS argues that the “debt overhang” from the overleveraging of financial firms and households, as well as private and public indebtedness, are a serious drag on the economy. This position has been argued for most forcefully by several colleagues of Summers at Harvard, most notably Carmen Reinhart and Kenneth Rogoff.16 Atif Mian and Amir Sufi also argue that household indebtedness was the primary culprit causing the economic collapse of 2007–2008. Their policy recommendation is that the risk to mortgage borrowers must be reduced to avoid future calamities.17
As noted, the defenders of MISS do not necessarily support a compatibility between the above six pillars: those favored by conservatives are supply-side and exogenous in emphasis, while liberals tend towards demand-side and endogenous ones. Instead, most often these pillars are developed as competing theories to explain the warrant of some aspect of secular stagnation, and/or to defend particular policy positions while criticizing alternative policy positions. However, the concern here is not whether there is the possibility for a synthesis of mainstream views. Rather, the emphasis is on how partial and separate such explanations are, both individually and in combination.
As Krugman said "We now know that the economic expansion of 2003-2007 was driven by a bubble. You can say the same about the latter part of the 90s expansion; and you can in fact say the same about the later years of the Reagan expansion, which was driven at that point by runaway thrift institutions and a large bubble in commercial real estate." In other words blowing bubbles is the fundamental way neoliberal economy functions, not an anomaly.
As much as the USA population is accustomed to hypocrisy of the ruling elite and is brainwashed by MSM, this news, delivered to them personally by the crisis of 2008 was too much for them not question the fundamentals (A Primer on Neoliberalism):
Of course, the irony that those same institutions would now themselves agree that those “anti-capitalist” regulations are required is of course barely noted. Such options now being considered are not anti-capitalist. However, they could be described as more regulatory or managed rather than completely free or laissez faire capitalism, which critics of regulation have often preferred.
But a regulatory capitalist economy is very different to a state-based command economy, the style of which the Soviet Union was known for. The points is that there are various forms of capitalism, not just the black-and-white capitalism and communism. And at the same time, the most extreme forms of capitalism can also lead to the bigger bubbles and the bigger busts.
In that context, the financial crisis, as severe as it was, led to key architects of the system admitting to flaws in key aspects of the ideology.
At the end of 2008, Alan Greenspan was summoned to the U.S. Congress to testify about the financial crisis. His tenure at the Federal Reserve had been long and lauded, and Congress wanted to know what had gone wrong. Henry Waxman questioned him:
I found a flaw in the model that I perceived is the critical functioning structure that defines how the world works, so to speak.
In other words, you found that your view of the world, your ideology, was not right, it was not working.
Precisely. That is precisely the reason I was shocked, because I had been going for 40 years or more with very considerable evidence that it was working exceptionally well.
[Greenspan’s flaw] warped his view about how the world was organized, about the sociology of the market. And Greenspan is not alone. Larry Summers, the president’s senior economic advisor, has had to come to terms with a similar error—his view that the market was inherently self-stabilizing has been “dealt a fatal blow.” Hank Paulson, Bush’s treasury secretary, has shrugged his shoulders with similar resignation. Even Jim Cramer from CNBC’s Mad Money admitted defeat: “The only guy who really called this right was Karl Marx.” One after the other, the celebrants of the free market are finding themselves, to use the language of the market, corrected.
— Raj Patel, Flaw , The Value of Nothing, (Picador, 2010), pp.4, 6-7
Now for the second time in history, the challenge is to save capitalism from itself: to recognize the great strengths of open, competitive markets while rejecting the extreme capitalism and unrestrained greed that have perverted so much of the global financial system in recent times. It took such a statesman as Franklin Delano Roosevelt to rebuild American capitalism after the Great Depression. New Deal policies allowed to rebuild postwar domestic demand, to engineer the Marshall Plan to rebuild Europe and to set in place the Bretton Woods system to govern international economic engagement.
With the abolishment of those policies blowing of one bubble after another, each followed by a financial crisis became standard chain of the events. Since 1973 we already have a half-dozen bubbles following by economic crisis. It started with Savings and loan crisis which partially was caused by the deregulation of S&Ls in 1980, by the Depository Institutions Deregulation and Monetary Control Act signed by President Jimmy Carter on March 31, 1980, an important step is a series that eliminated regulations initially designed to prevent lending excesses and minimize failures.
To hide this unpleasant fact neoliberals resort to so called the Great Neoliberal Lie:
What is neoliberalism
The fallacious and utterly misleading argument that the global economic crisis (credit crunch) was caused by excessive state spending, rather than by the reckless gambling of the deregulated, neoliberalized financial sector.
Just as with other pseudo-scientific theories and fundamentalist ideologies, the excuse that "we just weren't fundamentalist enough last time" is always there. The neoliberal pushers of the establishment know that pure free-market economies are as much of an absurd fairytale as 100% pure communist economies, however they keep pushing for further privatizations, tax cuts for the rich, wage repression for the ordinary, and reckless financial sector deregulations precisely because they are the direct beneficiaries of these policies. Take the constantly widening wealth gap in the UK throughout three decades of neoliberal policy. The minority of beneficiaries from this ever widening wealth gap are the business classes, financial sector workers, the mainstream media elite and the political classes. It is no wonder at all that these people think neoliberalism is a successful ideology. Within their bubbles of wealth and privilege it has been. To everyone else it has been an absolute disaster.
Returning to a point I raised earlier in the article; one of the main problems with the concept of "neoliberalism" is the nebulousness of the definition. It is like a form of libertarianism, however it completely neglects the fundamental libertarian idea of non-aggression. In fact, it is so closely related to that other (highly aggressive) US born political ideology of Neo-Conservatism that many people get the two concepts muddled up. A true libertarian would never approve of vast taxpayer funded military budgets, the waging of imperialist wars of aggression nor the wanton destruction of the environment in pursuit of profit.
Another concept that is closely related to neoliberalism is the ideology of minarchism (small stateism), however the neoliberal brigade seem perfectly happy to ignore the small-state ideology when it suits their personal interests. Take the vast banker bailouts (the biggest state subsidies in human history) that were needed to save the neoliberalised global financial sector from the consequences of their own reckless gambling, the exponential growth of the parasitic corporate outsourcing sector (corporations that make virtually 100% of their turnover from the state) and the ludicrous housing subsidies (such as "Help to Buy and Housing Benefits) that have fueled the reinflation of yet another property Ponzi bubble.
The Godfather of neoliberalism was Milton Friedman. He made the case that illegal drugs should be legalised in order to create a free-market drug trade, which is one of the very few things I agreed with him about. However this is politically inconvenient (because the illegal drug market is a vital source of financial sector liquidity) so unlike so many of his neoliberal ideas that have consistently failed, yet remain incredibly popular with the wealthy elite, Friedman's libertarian drug legalisation proposals have never even been tried out.
The fact that neoliberals are so often prepared to ignore the fundamental principles of libertarianism (the non-aggression principle, drug legalisation, individual freedoms, the right to peaceful protest ...) and abuse the fundamental principles of small state minarchism (vast taxpayer funded bailouts for their financial sector friends, £billions in taxpayer funded outsourcing contracts, alcohol price fixing schemes) demonstrate that neoliberalism is actually more like Ayn Rand's barmy (greed is the only virtue, all other "virtues" are aberrations) pseudo-philosophical ideology of objectivism than a set of formal economic theories.
The result of neoliberal economic theories has been proven time and again. Countries that embrace the neoliberal pseudo-economic ideology end up with "crony capitalism", where the poor and ordinary suffer "austerity", wage repression, revocation of labor rights and the right to protest, whilst a tiny cabal of corporate interests and establishment insiders enrich themselves via anti-competitive practices, outright criminality and corruption and vast socialism-for-the-rich schemes.
Neoliberal fanatics in powerful positions have demonstrated time and again that they will willingly ditch their right-wing libertarian and minarchist "principles" if those principles happen to conflict with their own personal self-interest. Neoliberalism is less of a formal set of economic theories than an error strewn obfuscation narrative to promote the economic interests, and justify the personal greed of the wealthy, self-serving establishment elite.
The 1930s, a well researched period of balance-sheet recession, provides some interesting perspective despite large historical distance. Roosevelt was no socialist, but his New Deal did frighten many businesses, especially large business which BTW attempted a coupe to remove him from is position. Fortunately for Roosevelt CIA did not exist yet. And New Deal government projects has been much bigger and bolder, then anything Obama ever tried, because Obama administration was constrained in its action by dominant neoliberal thinking. Like regulatory capture, which is an immanent feature of neoliberalism, there is also less known and less visible ideological capture of the government. Which also makes neoliberalism more similar to bolshevism as this ideological capture and related inability of the USSR elite to modernize the economy on some "mixed" principles, when over-centralization stopped working. It, along with the collapse of the ideology, probably was one of the main reasons of the collapse of the USSR. Chinese leadership managed to do this and introduced "new economic policies"(NEP).
Uner New deal regime when public investment and hence aggregate demand expanded, the economy started to grow anyway. Roosevelt did have a vision and he did convince the electorate about the way to go. Cheap optimism of Reagan, or even audacity of hope "Obama style" were not enough. After all, as Francis Bacon may remind us: “Hope is a good breakfast, but it is a bad supper” (Apophthegms, 1624).
Obama/Bernanke-style attempts to stimulate growth by pure injection of cheap money in this environment not only inflate new bubbles instead of old one, with which the fighting starts. They also lead to massive redistribution of wealth that makes the problem even worse:
Paul Krugman tells us that Larry Summers joined the camp concerned about secular stagnation in his I.M.F. talk last week, something that I had not picked up from prior coverage of the session. This is good news, but I would qualify a few of the points that Krugman makes in his elaboration of Summers' remarks.
First, while the economy may presently need asset bubbles to maintain full employment (a point I made in Plunder and Blunder: The Rise and Fall of the Bubble Economy), it doesn't follow that we should not be concerned about asset bubbles. The problem with bubbles is that their inflation and inevitable deflation lead to massive redistribution of wealth.
Larry Summers was the first establishment economist who conceded that this is the fact (Wikipedia)
... Larry Summers presented his view during November 2013 that secular (long-term) stagnation may be a reason that U.S. growth is insufficient to reach full employment: "Suppose then that the short term real interest rate that was consistent with full employment [i.e., the "natural rate"] had fallen to negative two or negative three percent. Even with artificial stimulus to demand you wouldn't see any excess demand. Even with a resumption in normal credit conditions you would have a lot of difficulty getting back to full employment."
Robert J. Gordon wrote in August 2012:
"Even if innovation were to continue into the future at the rate of the two decades before 2007, the U.S. faces six headwinds that are in the process of dragging long-term growth to half or less of the 1.9 percent annual rate experienced between 1860 and 2007. These include demography, education, inequality, globalization, energy/environment, and the overhang of consumer and government debt. A provocative 'exercise in subtraction' suggests that future growth in consumption per capita for the bottom 99 percent of the income distribution could fall below 0.5 percent per year for an extended period of decades".
One hypothesis is that high levels of productivity greater than the economic growth rate are creating economic slack, in which fewer workers are required to meet the demand for goods and services. Firms have less incentive to invest and instead prefer to hold cash. Journalist Marco Nappolini wrote in November 2013:
"If the expected return on investment over the short term is presumed to be lower than the cost of holding cash then even pushing interest rates to zero will have little effect. That is, if you cannot push real interest rates below the so-called short run natural rate [i.e., the rate of interest required to achieve the growth rate necessary to achieve full employment] you will struggle to bring forward future consumption, blunting the short run effectiveness of monetary policy...Moreover, if you fail to bring it below the long run natural rate there is a strong disincentive to increase fixed capital investment and a consequent preference to hold cash or cash-like instruments in an attempt to mitigate risk. This could cause longer-term hysteresis effects and reduce an economy's potential output."
The cost of energy is probably another reason of secular stagnation along with excessive public and private debt. Rising cost of energy is deadly for capitalism. Here are some comments that might clarify the situation:
This is the biggest crybaby column Krugman's ever written. He should be ashamed of himself and return his Nobel prize immediately. Has he ever put down Keynes long enough to read a little Marx? Here's Robert Brenner summing it up in 2009:
What mainly accounts for the long-term weakening of the real economy is a deep, and lasting, decline of the rate of return on capital investment since the end of the 1960s.
The failure of the rate of profit to recover is all the more remarkable, in view of the huge drop-off in the growth of real wages over the period.
The main cause, though not the only cause, of the decline in the rate of profit has been a persistent tendency to overcapacity in global manufacturing industries."
There's more, too. Instead of siding with crackpot Summers, Krugman should expand his research and be of some use to us all.
I am not sure that it is correct to think about public debt as internal debt. It's all about energy.
That means that public debt is to a large extent foreign due to unalterable oil consumption (and related trade deficits). And that completely changes the situation unless you are the owner of the world reserve currency.
But even in the latter case (exorbitant privilege as Valéry Giscard d'Estaing called it ) you can expect attacks on the status of the currency as world reserve currency. The growth is still supported via militarization, forced opening of foreign markets (with military force, if necessary) and conversion of the state into national security state. But as Napoleon admitted "You can do anything with bayonets except sit on them"
One positive thing about high public (and to a large extent foreign owned) debt in the USA is that it undermines what Bacevich called "new American militarism" (http://www.amazon.com/The-New-American-Militarism-Americans/dp/0195173384). Bacevich argues that this is distinct political course adopted by the "defense intellectuals," the evangelicals, and the neocons. And they will never regret their failed efforts such as Iraq invasion.
From Amazon review:
=== Quote ===
Bacevich clearly links our present predicaments both at home and abroad to the ever greater need for natural resources, especially oil from the Persian Gulf. He demolishes all of the reasons for our bellicosity based on ideals and links it directly to our insatiable appetite for oil and economic expansion. Naturally, like thousands of writers before him, he points out the need for a national energy policy based on more effective use of resources and alternative means of production.
=== End of Quote ==
As Heinberg explained fossil fuels, primarily oil, permeate every aspect of our modern culture - from agriculture to cities and a long-term perspective. In the age of almost 7 billion people demanding more and more of limited resources, the media, politicians and governments tend to only report short-term perspectives and ignore Heinberg's Five Axioms of Sustainability to the extent that these concepts are taboo to be spoken, discussed or thought (Heinberg, Richard (2007) Five Axioms of Sustainability):
1. (Tainter’s Axiom): Any society that continues to use critical resources unsustainably will collapse.
Exception: A society can avoid collapse by finding replacement resources.
Limit to the exception: In a finite world, the number of possible replacements is also finite.
2. (Bartlett’s Axiom): Population growth and/or growth in the rates of consumption of resources cannot be sustained.
3. To be sustainable, the use of renewable resources must proceed at a rate that is less than or equal to the rate of natural replenishment.
4. To be sustainable, the use of non-renewable resources must proceed at a rate that is declining, and the rate of decline must be greater than or equal to the rate of depletion.
The rate of depletion is defined as the amount being extracted and used during a specified time interval (usually a year) as a percentage of the amount left to extract.
5. Sustainability requires that substances introduced into the environment from human activities be minimized and rendered harmless to biosphere functions.
In cases where pollution from the extraction and consumption of non-renewable resources that has proceeded at expanding rates for some time threatens the viability of ecosystems, reduction in the rates of extraction and consumption of those resources may need to occur at a rate greater than the rate of depletion.
Archaeologist Joseph Tainter, in his classic study The Collapse of Complex Societies (1988), demonstrated that collapse is a frequent if not universal fate of complex societies and argued that collapse results from declining returns on efforts to support growing levels of societal complexity using energy harvested from the environment. Jared Diamond’s popular book Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed (2005) similarly makes the argument that collapse is the common destiny of societies that ignore resourse constraints. This axiom defines sustainability by the consequences of its absence—that is, collapse.
Adapted from Wikipedia
Excluding the current, there were two period of stagnation in the USA history:
Construction of structures, residential, commercial and industrial, fell off dramatically during the depression, but housing was well on its way to recovering by the late 1930s.
The depression years were the period of the highest total factor productivity growth in the United States, primarily to the building of roads and bridges, abandonment of unneeded railroad track and reduction in railroad employment, expansion of electric utilities and improvements wholesale and retail distribution.
The war created pent up demand for many items as factories that once produced automobiles and other machinery converted to production of tanks, guns, military vehicles and supplies. Tires had been rationed due to shortages of natural rubber; however, the U.S. government built synthetic rubber plants. The U.S. government also built synthetic ammonia plants, aluminum smelters, aviation fuel refineries and aircraft engine factories during the war. After the war commercial aviation, plastics and synthetic rubber would become major industries and synthetic ammonia was used for fertilizer. The end of armaments production free up hundreds of thousands of machine tools, which were made available for other industries. They were needed in the rapidly growing aircraft manufacturing industry.
The memory of war created a need for preparedness in the United States. This resulted in constant spending for defense programs, creating what President Eisenhower called the military-industrial complex.
U.S. birth rates began to recover by the time of World War II, and turned into the baby boom of the postwar decades. A building boom commenced in the years following the war. Suburbs began a rapid expansion and automobile ownership increased.
High-yielding crops and chemical fertilizers dramatically increased crop yields and greatly lowered the cost of food, giving consumers more discretionary income. Railroad locomotives switched from steam to diesel power, with a large increase in fuel efficiency. Most importantly, cheap food essentially eliminated malnutrition in countries like the United States and much of Europe.
Many trends that began before the war continued:
- The use of electricity grew steadily as prices continued to fall, although at slower rate than in the early decades. More people purchased washing machines, dryers, refrigerators and other appliances. Air conditioning became increasingly prevalent in households and businesses. See:Diffusion of innovations#Diffusion data
- Infrastructures: The highway system continued to expand. Construction of the interstate highway system started in the late 1950s. The pipeline network continued to expand. Railroad track mileage continued its decline.
- Better roads and increased investment in the distribution system of trucks, warehouses and material-handling equipment, such as forklift trucks continued to reduce the cost of goods.
- Mechanization of agriculture increased dramatically, especially the use of combine harvesters. Tractor sales peaked in the mid-1950s.
One of the first researchers who clearly attributed secular stagnation problem to neoliberalism was Alan Nasser, Professor Emeritus of Political Economy and Philosophy at The Evergreen State College. In his September 22, 2005 paper ECONOMIC LAWS, STRUCTURAL TENDENCIES, SECULAR STAGNATION THEORY, AND THE FATE OF NEOLIBERALISM he pointed out the key features of secular stagnation long before Summers started to understand the problem and even befor the economic crash of 2008 ;-)
September 22, 2005 | alannasser.org
Alan Nasser Invited presentation, University of Lille,
"We have now grown used to the idea that most ordinary or natural growth processes (the growth of organisms, or popu- lations of organisms or, for example, of cities) is not merely limited, but self-limited, i.e. is slowed down or eventually brought to a standstill as a consequence of the act of growth itself. For one reason or another, but always for some reason, organisms cannot grow indefinitely, just as beyond a certain level of size or density a population defeats its own capacity for further growth."
Sir Peter Medawar, The Revolution of Hope
"A business firm grows and attains great strength, and afterwards perhaps stagnates and decays; and at the turning point there is a balancing or equilibrium of the forces of life and decay. And as we reach to the higher stages of our work, we shall need ever more and more to think of economic forces as those which make a young man grow in strength until he reaches his prime; after which he gradually becomes stiff and inactive, till at last he sinks to make room for other and more vigorous life."
Alfred Marshall, Principals of Economics (1890)
"Though Keynes's 'breakdown theory is quite different from Marx's, it has an important feature in common with the latter: in both theories, the breakdown is motivated by causes inherent to the working of the economic engine, not by the action of factors external to it."
Joseph Schumpeter, Ten Great Economists
In this paper I shall address two major issues. Firstly, I shall discuss the implications for economic theory of a conception of economic laws widely at variance with the empiricist and/or positivist account of what laws are, how they are discovered, and how they are related to theory. At the same time, I will reject one cornerstone of anti-positivist thought, namely the idea that one cannot provide an account of laws that is fundamentally the same for the natural and the social sciences. Thus, I shall argue that an anti-positivist account of laws is entirely compatible with a conception of scientific laws that applies to both the "hard" (natural) and the "soft" (social) sciences. I shall defend this position by showing its application to economics and economic laws. In doing so, I will compare and contrast both natural-scientific (primarily physical) laws and social-scientific (primarily economic) laws. Secondly, I will argue that perhaps the most significant economic law descriptive of mature capitalism is the law of secular stagnation. The latter states that it is the natural tendency of a developed, industrialized capitalist economy to default to a state of chronic excess capacity and underconsumption. And this is itself a result of the tendency in advanced capitalism for the economic surplus (roughly, the difference between the Gross Domectic Product and the cost of producing the GDP) to grow at a rate more rapid than the growth of profitable industrial investment opportunities. In the course of my discussion I will use the United States as a paradigm case, Much as Marx attempted to identify the underlying features of the accumulation process by reference to England during the Industrial Revulution.
This has in fact been the state of global capital since the end of the "Golden Age" and the commencement of the age of globalized Reaganism/Thatcherism, i.e. the Age of Neoliberalism. I date the transition as commencing in 1973, the last year of post-War Keynesian growth rates in the USA. In fact, I will argue, neoliberal economic policy exacerbates capitalism'a tendency to stagnation. Let me begin with an account of economic laws.
LAWS, GENERATIVE MECHANISMS AND TENDENCIES
On the Humean or radical empiricist (positivist) account of laws, the latter are descriptions of observed regularities. Presumably, the scientist observes a "constant conjunction" of different kinds of happening, and infers from the regularity of the conjunction that the latter could not be merely accidental, and so concludes that the observed pattern of regularities must be nomological or law-like. 'Sodium chloride dissolves in water' and 'Metal expands when heated' would be simple examples of the results of this account of how laws of nature are discovered.
That this empiricist account is flawed becomes evident when we consider full-fledged laws of a genuine natural science, e.g. physics. I emphasize that laws are components of theories, which themselves are constitutive of established scientific disciplines, such as physics, chemistry, and biology. In fact, the two "laws" mentioned at the end of the preceding paragraph are not laws of physics at all. Among the genuine laws of physics is, e.g., 'Falling bodies near the surface of the earth accelerate at a constant rate.' This law is certainly not established by the observation of repeated conjunctions of events. On the contrary, actually observed falling bodies in "open systems", that is, in the circumstances of everyday life, conspicuously fail to conform to this law. Yet this is not taken to refute the law. For the law describes the behavior of bodies in a vacuum, that is to say, in a "closed system", one created by the scientist, typically in a laboratory situation. Philosophers of science have tended to ignore the distinction between regularities observed only in closed systems, and conjunctions observed in everyday life, which, as such, have no value as contributions to scientific knowledge. These philosophers have, accordingly, written as if the regularities in question were features of open systems, of nature. This confusion impedes our understanding of all types of laws, from physical to economic.
This failure –until relatively recently- of philosophers of science to properly attend to the importance of laboratory work in the acquisition of scientific knowledge is due to the fact that these philosophers have focused almost exclusively on science as established theory, i.e. as a way of representing the world. They had ignored how these theories were actually established. That is, they paid little attention to experiment, which is a way of intervening in the world. This inattention to what happens in closed systems created in the laboratory led thinkers to miss the importance of the concept of tendencies or dispositions in grasping the concept of a law of science. Let us dwell on this point and its relation to economic laws.
It is not that our knowledge of natural laws is not based on observed regularities. The point, rather, is that these regularities are not found in nature. They are found in closed systems, elaborately designed experimental circumstances found in laboratories. Yet, we correctly believe that what we learn in experimental situations gives us knowledge that is not confined to these situations. We believe that what we learn from observations of repeated patterns in experiments gives us not only knowledge of the behavior of objects in laboratory circumstances, but also knowledge of these same (kinds of) objects as they behave in nature, in the open systems of everyday life. But scientifically significant repeated patterns are not found in the world of daily life. This raises profound epistemological and ontological questions.
The most significant epistemological question arises from the following consideration: Were it not for the intervention of the experimenter, closed-system regularities would not obtain. Hence, the experimenter is a causal agent of the pattern of regularities observed in the laboratory. It is these contrived conjunctions which we invoke to justify our belief in (usually causal) laws. And while these regularities are the (partial) result of the intervention of the experimenter, we do not believe that the experimenter in any way originates the laws whose existence is attested to by the contrived regularities. The question therefore arises: What justifies our (correct) belief that knowledge obtained in closed laboratory systems designed by an agent applies also in open systems, i.e. in nature, which of course is not designed by scientists and does not evidence the regularities found under designed experimental circumstances?
I want to suggest that this question comes to the same as the following question: What must nature be like, and what must experiment reveal, in order for experimental knowledge to be able to be legitimately extended to the world outside of the laboratory, i.e. to nature? Note that this is a Realist question: it asks what we must presuppose about the constitution of the world in order that our experimentally-based scientific beliefs be justified. This is the precise Realist counterpart to Kant's Idealist question: What must we presoppose our minds –as opposed to nature or the world- to be like in order for scientific knowledge to be possible? I will argue that the answer to our Realist question provides the conceptual resources to elucidate the general nature of economic laws and economic theory, and the nature of the subject matter investigated by economists.
I will argue that since we believe that what we learn by experimental observation justifies our claim to knowledge of the experimental objects as they behave in nature, we must assume that these objects possess natural structures, similar to what Aristotle and the scholastics called "natures" or "essences." A natural structure must be conceived as what Critical Realists call a generative mechanism (hereafter, GM). The latter is a specific mode of material organization. What GMs generate are tendencies or dispositions to behave in characteristic ways. The statement that a physical thing or a social institution or structure tends to generate characteristic regularities is a statement of a law. The natural structure of salt, expressed in chemistry as HCl, is such that when it is mixed with water, whose natural structure or organization is expressed as H2O, it tends to dissolve. Gases tend to expand when heated and falling bodies near the surface of the earth tend to accelerate at a constant rate. These are statements of chemical and physical laws. We shall see that precisely the same kind of analysis can be made of laws in economics.
Tendencies are not the same as trends. The latter are merely observed regularities; there need be no implication that an underlying structural feature of the thing in question generates the regularity. This feature of laws is reflected in ordinary language in non-scientific contexts: we might say "He has a tendency to exaggerate." We mean that a disposition to exaggerate is a natural expression of his underlying character. We do not usually mean that he exaggerates whenever it is possible for him to exaggerate. This is part of the meaning of 'tendency.' Thus, tendencies can exist without being exercised. This happens when, e.g. salt is not mixed with water. Salt's nomological tendency to dissolve in water remains its categorical property even in the absence of circumstances in which its tendency to dissolve can be exercised. In addition, tendencies can be exercised without being realized. This is the case in the natural sciences when we observe, in non-laboratory situations, falling bodies accelerating at different rates. Indeed, no falling body in open systems is observed to accelerate at a constant or the same rate. But of course this is not taken to falsify the law of falling bodies. In nature, GMs continue to act in their characteristic ways without producing the patterned outcomes observable in closed experimental systems. This is so because in nature a multiplicity of GMs combine, interact and collide such as to result in the (scientifically irrelevant) flux of phenomena of the everyday world. The realization of a natural tendency can, in other words, be offset by counteracting forces. Thus, empiricism's mistake is to fail to recognize that GMs operate independent of the effects they generate. That is, GMs endure and go on acting (in the way that experimental closure enables us to identify) in nature, i.e. in open systems, where patterned regularities do not prevail. Statements about tendencies are not equivalent, salva veritate, to statements about their effects. Laws may exist and exercise their tendencies or powers even though no Humean "constant conjunctions" are observed. (This would be the case if it happened that the practice of creating closed experimental conditions had never been engaged in, i.e. in a world without science.)
LAWS, GENERATIVE MECHANISMS AND TENDENCIES IN ECONOMICS
GMs are not confined to the natural world. Natural structures are not the only structures there are. Plainly, there are humanely constructed structures. Capitalism is one such structure. Structures of this kind, GMs, that are dynamic by nature, i.e. which are characteristically diachronic, be they natural or socially constituted, share the same ontology. This should not be confused with the radical empiricist (positivist) claim that the natural and the social sciences share the same method. Clearly they do not: closed experimental situations exist but are not typical i istic outcomes ceteris paribus, ie. other things being equal, i.e. ceteris absentibus, other things being absent. When we identify the tendency of a thing, we specify what will happen, as a matter of course, if interfering conditions are absent. That is the point of vacuums in the closed systems created in laboratory experiments: they permit exercised tendencies, i.e. tendencies in operation, to be realized. If we want to know what gases tend to do when acted upon by heat, we eliminate all potential counteracting forces by creating a vacuum in the chamber, so that both gas and heat can express their natures unimpeded.
Thus, implicit in both physical- and social-scientific practice is the crucial distinction between the exercise and the realization (or manifestation) of a tendency. This distinction is essential to structural analysis in economics because of the impossibility of creating the social equivalent of a vacuum in the social sciences, which deal with the open systems of everyday life, where a great many forces and tendencies collide. Accordingly, just as the law of the tendency of falling bodies to accelerate at a constant rate is not falsified by the failure of falling bodies to behave accordingly in open systems, so too, e.g., the law of the tendency of the growth of productive capacity to outpace the growth of profitable investment opportunities -the thesis of secular stagnation theory- is not undermined by the remarkable growth rates of the Golden Age. In both cases, the presence of offsetting factors prevents the structurally generated tendency from being realized or manifested. I argue that the same can be said for any putative economic law.
In social science –and this is most conspicuous in economics, the most theoretically developed of the human sciences- we compensate for the absence of experimentally closed systems by constructing their functional equivalent, which we might call, in terms redolent of Weber, an ideal-typical theoretical model. It is an unfortunate habit (perhaps a tendency in the above-elaborated sense…) of mainstream economists to employ these models as if they described the open-system observable facts of economic life. This is, I suspect, a consequence of the economic empiricist's mistake referred to above, namely to think that GMs, if they must be spoken of at all, are to be conceived as reducible to their effects. (Recall Hume's claim, inspired by his reading of Newton, to expunge all notions of "power", "generation" and "production" from his analyses.) But, as noted above, GMs in both the social and the natural sciences employ unrealistic models, i.e. models which do not pretend to offer the equivalent of a photographic representation of the world. In both natural-scientific experiments and social-scientific ideal-type models, an attempt is made to abstract from the nonessential. We seek to place the spotlight of theory on what is necessary to the situation, system or institution under investigation, and to prescind from the arbitrary and accidental. In economics we seek to identify those features of capitalism that make it what it is. This enables us to identify capitalism's distinct and characteristic tendencies, and to describe what will happen as a result of the exercise of these tendencies, ceteris absentibus.
That there are such tendencies seems to me to be uncontroversial. We all know, for example, that cyclical downturns are not mere empirical contingencies of capitalist development, but structurally generated tendencies which follow inexorably from the specific mode of organization (structure) of capitalism. And like all tendencies, their realization can be offset, as we have seen above, by counteracting factors, such as fiscal and monetary policy. Other examples would be what Marx called the tendencies of capital to concentrate and centralize. The tendency, and corresponding law, with which I will be primarily concerned in this paper is constitutive of the theory of secular stagnation, and is far more likely than the immediately foregoing examples to generate controversy. I refer to the tendency of mature capitalism to suffer from a chronic paucity of profitable industrial investment opportunities, relative to the great magnitude of its investable surplus. Let us look more closely at this tendency.
THE THEORY OF SECULAR STAGNATION
It is worth mentioning that the view that the continuous accumulation of capital is both essential to the normal development of capitalist societies and essentially self-limiting was held by virtually all of the major modern political economists, in the form of one version or another of the doctrine of the falling rate of profit. Adam Smith explained the secular decline of the profit rate by the increasing abundance of capital in a developing capitalist society. Ricardo and Mill believed that the rate of profit would be depressed by the diminishing productivity of the land which would drive up the price of wage goods and therefore of the wages of labor, and so drive down the profits of capital. Marx pointed to the increasing capital-intensity of industry and the paucity of working-class purchasing power relative to the productive capacity of the economy, as the principal threat to the profit rate. And Keynes held that in mature capitalist economies the "marginal efficiency of capital", i.e. the expected rate of return (over cost) on an additional unit of a given capital asset, would tend to decline. All these thinkers had an at least intuitive appreciation of the fact that the growth of capital tends to be terminally self-limiting. (It is worth citing a remark of Joseph Shumpeter at this point:
"Though Keynes's 'breakdown theory is quite different from Marx's, it has an important feature in common with the latter: in both theories, the breakdown is motivated by causes inherent to the working of the economic engine, not by the action of factors external to it.")
In my estimation, no one understood the underlying dynamics of the tendency to stagnation better than the Polish economist Michal Kalecki, who is known to have developed the essentials of Keynes's General Theory before Keynes himself (and to have produced far more elegant mathematical formulations thereof). Perhaps the best way to understand Kalecki's thought is to see him as having argued that certain features of a not-yet-mature industrializing economy persist after the process of industrialization has been accomplished, with the effect that the developed capitalist economy is saddled with a problem of chronic excess capacity. Let me sketch this train of thought.
In the course of their natural growth capitalist economies reach a level of industrial development characterizable as maturity, a point beyond which growth must either cease, or be sustained by exogenous (in a sense to be elucidated below) means. Straight away we are confronted with a rejection of an assumption that is implicit in mainstream neoclassical theory, viz. that both the supply and the demand curves shift, virtually automatically, to the right. On the stagnationist conceptualization of growth or development, the process of development is not everlasting, but rather is at some point accomplished. There is the period, industrialization, during which the economy is developing, and which culminates in a (finally) industrialized or developed infrastructure. At this stage there will have been built up, or "accumulated", a complement of plant and equipment in steel production, machine tools, power stations, transport systems, etc., that is capable of satisfying a level of consumption demand consistent with the moral limits of a reasonably civilized style of life, the constraints imposed by a finite fund of natural resources, and, most importantly for stagnation theory, the limited possibilities of what Marx called "expanded reproduction" imposed by the accumulation process itself.
This account point can be expanded as follows. During any period of industrialization, the growth of the capital goods industry (hereafter, following Marx, Department I, or DI) must outpace the growth of the consumption goods industries (hereafter, again following Marx, Department II, or DII). Indeed, it belongs to the nature of the process of industrialization that the demand for the output of DI cannot be a function of the behavior of consumption demand; during industrialization, investment demand is both rapid and relatively autonomous. For if the principal project is to develop the means of production, then a disproportionate share of national wealth must be devoted to investment/accumulation at the expense of consumption. Strategic capital goods such as transport and communications networks and steel mills cannot be built bit by bit. This is clear with respect to railroads (Recall Keynes's remark that "Two pyramids are better than one, and two masses for the dead better than one; but two railroads from London to York are not necessarily better than one."), but perhaps not as clear with respect to steel facilities.
Suppose 1) that the efficient production of steel requires equipment with the capacity to produce 200,000 tons of steel, and 2) that demand turns out to be for 300,000 tons. The investor has two alternatives, either to forgo an extra market or to take a chance and add another 200.000 tons. On the second alternative, the one virtually assured in a period of (rapid) industrialization, the manufacturer is left with a surplus capacity of 100,000 tons. Here we see, writ small, a crucial source of two basic tendencies of capitalist development, the unrelenting pressure to expand markets, and the tendency to overproduction of a specific kind, namely the overproduction of capital goods, the tendency to overaccumulation. Each of these tendencies is the basis of a corresponding law of economics: Wherever we find a competitive, profit-driven market economy, we must also find a system-driven tendency to expand markets, and: Wherever we find a competitive, profit-driven market economy, we must also find a system-driven tendency for the growth of productive capacity to outpace the growth of effective demand.
As we have seen, all the major classical political economists anticipated the stationary state; they all assumed that the period of development or industrialization would come to an end. Basic industries would be in place, and DI would be capable of meeting all the replacement and expansion demands of DII. Prescinding for the moment from the emergence of new industries, DI would no longer be a source of substantial expansion demand for its own output; most of DI's internal expansion demand would be extinct.
But this is not th hread of classical (and perhaps neoclassical) theory contains the assurance that the capitalist economy provides a mechanism that in the long run counteracts the tendency of the demand for the products of DI to peter out. As one might expect, this is the price mechanism, which brings about, in the circumstances described above, a falling rate of profit (or interest) and thereby a simultaneous check on accumulation and spur to consumption. The causal chain is simple: the fall of the profit rate would lower capital's share of national income, i.e. it would transfer income from capital to labor. Thus, the demand gap created by the sharp waning of DI's expansion demand would be made up by the increase in consumption demand, which would of course mean an expansion in the demand for the output of DII. Moreover, an immediate expansion of DII at the expense of DI in order to assure a rapid transition out of the stationary state would be entirely feasible given the adaptability of certain key industries in DI to new market conditions resulting from the newly-expanded purchasing power of the working class. The construction of new factories could, for example, yield to the construction of new homes.
The theoretical elegance of this scenario is impressive -almost inspirational- but, alas for illusions, the price mechanism does not work this way. For the above-mentioned transfer in national income from capital to labor is supposed to happen when industrialization comes to an end by virtue of its having been accomplished. But from the capitalists' perspective, it is as if nothing counts as industrialization coming to an end. New industries, for example, can create a situation functionally equivalent to industrialization. "Accumulate, accumulate, that is Moses and the prophets."
We have at this point arrived at a picture of a developed capitalist economy which is in a state of permanent industrialization. Excess capacity prevails and working-class income is stagnant or declining. Interestingly, this has in fact been the state of both the U.S. and the global economy since 1973. According to the foregoing analysis, this reflects the fact that the U.S. and global economies are now instances not merely of the exercise of the law of the tendency of mature capitalism to stagnate, but of its realization. To put it differently: these economies are now in their natural state.
But important questions immediately arise. Why are these economies in their natural state now? And if there is a structurally generated tendency for capitalist economies to stagnate, how shall we account for the historically unprecedented growth rates of the Golden Age? I have barely sketched an outline of a response to these challenges above: if there is indeed a tendency for capitalism to stagnate, then there must have been in operation during the Golden Age what I called "counteracting forces and tendencies" which had spent themselves by the mid-1970s. In the absence of new offsetting forces, the tendency to stagnate has, as we should expect, re-asserted itself. These claims require further elaboration, and it is to this task that I now turn.
SECULAR STAGNATION AND TRANSFORMATIONAL GROWTH
In order to account for the actual pattern of capitalist growth in the context of stagnation theory, we must reflect on the kind of growth required by capitalist economic arrangements. Mainstream theory does not distinguish between kinds of growth if and when it addresses the specific requirements of capitalist growth at all. This is, I believe, a serious error. I will begin by introducing the notion of transformational growth, which transforms the entire way of life of society and absorbs exceptionally large amounts of the investible surplus. My point shall be that a capitalist economy cannot sustain growth merely by producing more and more different types of widgets, in the absence of pervasive structural change. Growth sustained in the latter manner is transformational growth.
We are forced to introduce the concept of transformational growth for reasons related to my earlier discussion of the structural features of mature capitalism which generates a chronic tendency to stagnation. I will now embellish this analysis. It should be clear that capitalism cannot grow in the way in which a balloon grows: its growth cannot leave its proportions intact, i.e. such that there are no new products and no new processes of production. This is to say that a capitalist economy either undergoes transformational growth or it stagnates. The argument is as follows.
Investment expands productive capacity, which in turn requires that demand increase at the same rate as potential production. Without the required rate of demand growth, underutilization/excess capacity will discourage further investment or capital accumulation and the result will of course be stagnation. Let us not address this issue in the manner of the neoclassical economist, who seems to assume that both supply and demand curves can be counted on to perennially shift to the right (absent, of course, undue government interference). But this quaint assumption is belied by the enormous literature on the development and indispensability to capitalism of the marketing and advertising industries, which we might view as massive efforts to counteract Keynes's declining marginal propensity to consume by deliberately creating among the consuming masses a full panoply of "manufactured" consumption desires. These considerations point to the need constantly to exogenously stimulate consumption demand in order to narrow the demand gap generated by the tendency to overaccumulation. But they do not yet establish the need to generate a broad, nation-wide pattern of demand required by structural change and transformational growth.
What is needed at this point are concrete examples of the generators of transformational growth, and of exactly how these generators accomplish one of the fundamental features of transformational growth, the mobilization and coordination of the economic resources of the entire country into a grand national project which stimulates demand not merely for this and that consumption good, but for crucial commodities and institutions such as oil, steel rubber, and other primary products, and communication and transportation facilities. What this requires are what Paul Baran and Paul Sweezy termed, in their influential Monopoly Capital (Monthly Review Press, 1966), "epoch-making innovations". Edward Nell and Robert Heilbroner have characterized these same innovations as "transformative innovations". Let me approach transformative innovations by looking at the tendency to stagnation from yet another perspective, one which focuses on the role of competition as a major force behind the growth of both investment and consumption.
Competition reduces the need for investment by tending to increase both productivity and savings. Let us see how this happens. As a result of competition business is under continuous pressure to cut costs and produce more efficiently. To the extent that business succeeds in these respects, productive potential is increased. At the same time, competition also requires business to hold down wages and salaries and to pay out dividend and profit income relatively sparingly. Together, these pressures hold back both worker and capitalist consumption. The result is a tendency for productive capacity to expand faster than consumption. This means that there is no reason for investment to grow, for capital to achieve the required rate of accumulation, unless there are major pressures transforming the way people live. In the absence of such pressures, we may expect stagnation.
There are two dimensions of transformative innovations which are in fact two aspects of the same phenomenon. One dimension is solely technological, and the other points to changes in a population's entire way of life. Neither of these is part of a process of steady, balloon-like growth, nor is either automatically, or normally, generated by the fundamental capitalist dynamics identified by the mainstream textbooks. For this reason I have called the stimulus imparted by these innovations 'exogenous'. Let us look first at the technological dimension of transformative innovation.
This can be identified, after the owl of Minerva has spread its wings, by reflecting on some of the requirements of ideal-typical capitalism. Neoliberals correctly remind us that the bottom line is of course "freedom", primarily the freedom of capital to roam the world seeking markets, sources of cheap labor and investment opportunities. Microecenomic textbooks in fact tend to assume the perfect mobility of both capital and labor.
Let us focus on sources of power, which became especially important after the industrial revolution. Technological development resulted in the virtually total replacement of human and animal muscle power by inanimate sources of power, mainly water and steam. But reliance on water as a source of power places extreme limits on the mobility of capital, and hence on the possibilities of capitalist growth. Water power is site-specific, and the number of rivers and streams is limited. Moreover, the water had to be fast-running and productive facilities had to be located as far downstream as possible. And of course water power is only seasonally available. These restraints alone place an intolerable obstacle to the free and ongoing accumulation of capital. Here we find an overwhelming incentive to switch from water to steam power. This constitutes a huge stimulus to the accumulation of capital on a national scale.
Capitalism requires sources of power that are independent of nature and can be applied constantly wherever they are needed. And these are precisely what steam power made possible. It was now possible to set up productive facilities virtually anywhere; a major fetter to the accumulation of capital was removed. The universal mobility required by capital was now much more fully realized. At this point I want to emphasize that this technological /economic transformation was necessarily accompanied by profound social and cultural changes. For the steam engine's reduction of the seasonality of water power made possible a feature of work that is increasingly common on a global scale: the emergence of modern year-round work habits. With this change comes a dramatic transformation of our notions (and practices) of work and leisure, with all the consequences these have for the felt experience of everyday life. That is an instance of the second dimension of transformative innovation, i.e. its introduction of dramatic cultural changes, changes in the way populations live.
Much the same can be said for the subsequent shift to electrical power, which makes possible trolley cars, refrigerators (as opposed to what used to be called, in the U.S., "ice boxes"), ranges, toasters, radios, washing machines, fans, et al.
The railroad too is a transformative innovation par excellence. Consider the spectacular effects of railroad expansion: internal transport costs are sharply reduced; both new products and new geographical areas are brought into commercial markets; it is now possible to deliver exports to port with unprecedented efficiency, thereby encouraging the extensive development of the export sector; and impetus is provided to the development of the coal, iron and engineering industries. As with the steam engine, these technological and economic benefits wee necessarily accompanied by profound social and cultural changes. The railroads changed the way of life of the people by binding them as never before. The possibility now existed for mass production, mass consumption and indeed mass culture.
And of course the establishment of a national rail network absorbed massive amounts of investible capital, thereby spurring sustainable growth and offsetting the realization of the economic law that capitalist economies tend to stagnate. Apropos: in the latter third of the nineteenth century, railroad investment in the U.S. amounted to more than all investment in manufacturing industries.
And who can doubt that the transformative effects of the introduction of the automobile were epoch-making? The expansion of the automobile industry was the single most important force in the economic expansion of the 1920s. Car production increased threefold during this decade. (The automobile industry produced 12.7% of all manufactured output, employed 7.1% of all manufacturing workers, and paid 8.7% of all industrial wages.) Immediately after World War II the auto industry continued what was to be its breakneck expansion, and the possibilities created thereby constituted what was perhaps the most extensive transformation of the country's way of life in its history.
Consider the stimulus to capital accumulation and employment constituted by the following, each and all a consequence of the increasing automobilization of American society and culture: the migration of the population from the central city to the suburbs and exurbs (first made possible by the streetcar, before the major streetcar operations were bough and then quickly dismantled by the auto companies); the need for surfaced roads, road construction and maintenance, highway construction and maintenance (which had already accounted for 2% of GDP in 1929); the suburbanization of America, with the attendant construction of housing, schools, hospitals, workplaces, and more; the growth of shopping malls; the expansion of the credit industry; the spread of hotels and motels; and of course the growth of the tourism/travel industry. Never before had any population's way of living been transformed so profoundly in so short a period of time. And of course no one has failed to recognize that Americans' main symbol of their most precious possession, their personal freedom/liberty, is their ability to drive, solo, cars that have increasingly come to resemble tanks. Americans' liberty, embodied in the automobile, has become, literally, a commodity.
The long-term growth of the U.S. economy cannot be adequately explained or described without reference to these transformative innovations. None of these are required by the models of capital accumulation found in neoclassical, Keynesian or Marxian growth theory. After the civil war, growth in the last third of the nineteenth century was spurred primarily by the railroads. This stimulus fizzled, as railroad expansion began to slow down, around 1907, when, in spite of extensive electrification of urban (and even some rural) areas, the U.S. economy began a stretch of slow growth, which lasted until the outbreak of World War I. After the end of the War, the economy experienced a brief slump, which was followed by a period of fairly sustained expansion in the 1920s. The latter, as we have seen, was spurred mainly by the growth of the automobile industry. But the rate of growth of the automobile industry slowed down after 1926, and with it the rate of growth of almost all other manufacturing industries. And wages and employment had not risen as rapidly as production, productivity or profits.
In fact, the economic situation in the U.S. at the end of the 1920s bore a remarkable resemblance to the current economic situation in America. After 1926 overcapacity emerged in many key industries, the most significant of these being automobiles, textiles, and residential construction. Contractionary forces are cumulative: excess capacity caused business confidence to decline, with resulting cutbacks in spending on productive capacity in the consumer durables and capital goods industries. The economy was intensely unsound at the end of the 1920s, and the indications at the time were clear. Consumer demand was held down by a steadily growing inequality of income. Thus, an increasing percentage of total purchases were financed by credit in order to foster purchases of consumer durables. About seventy-five percent of all cars were sold on credit. Accordingly, both home mortgages and installment debt grew rapidly. This was the extension of a trend that had begun as early as 1922, when total personal debt began rising faster than disposable income. Thus, underconsumption and traces of excess capacity, key indicators of stagnationist forces, were in effect from the very beginning of the "roaring '20s". These tendencies became increasingly foregrounded over the course of the decade.
Excess capacity in key manufacturing industries was displacing workers from capital-intensive, technologically advanced sectors to industries relatively devoid of technological advance, i.e. service industries such as trade, finance and government. With capital unable to find sufficiently profitable investment opportunities in high-productivity industries, rampant speculative activity ensued, fostered by the growing concentration of income and therefore savings during the decade. More than two thirds of all personal savings was held by slightly over two percent of all families. The wanton optimism of the 1920s led those with substantial savings to want to get richer quickly, and with little effort. The stock market bubble that materialized at the end of the decade seemed to justify the expectations that fortunes could be made overnight in real estate and the stock market. When investors acted on these expectations, the existing bubble became bigger and hence more fragile. To those familiar with the current state of the U.S. economy, the present situation presents itself as history repeating itself -contra Marx- yet again as farce.
FROM GREAT DEPRESSION TO GOLDEN AGE TO NEOLIBERALISM
The mounting instabilities of the economy of the 1920s led to a Depression that was unresponsive to the Roosevelt administration's elevenfold increase in government spending. When U.S. entry into World War II finally brought about a resumption of growth, there was nonetheless an abiding fear among economists that once War spending ceased, the forces and tendencies that had generated the Depression might reassert themselves and exceptionally slow growth could resume. Instead, much to the surprise of many economists, American capitalism began the most sustained period of expansion in its entire history. The period from 1947 to 1973 has come to be called "The Golden Age", and appears, on the face of it, to be a fatal anomaly with respect to secular stagnation theory. After all, if the causes of the Great Depression were structural, and the exogenous stimulus provided by the War was what produced a resumption of growth, how was it possible that the economy, in the absence of powerful exogenous stimulus, exhibited an historically unprecedented period of long-term growth?
I have suggested that sustained national (as opposed to intra-national regional) growth has been engendered by the emergence of transformative innovations, and it is this kind of consideration that I believe offers the most plausible explanation both of Golden-Age expansion and of the petering out of this growth period and the resumption of (global) stagnation. Five stimuli to long-term growth were set in motion after the War, and these were for the most part exogenous in the sense indicated, and essentially limited. I will construe these stimuli as forces counteracting the tendency to stagnation. Once most of these stimuli had spent their potential, stagnationist tendencies re-asserted themselves, and overinvestment became evident once again. With profitable industrial investment opportunities in short supply, the economic surplus was invested instead in what became a vast proliferation of financial instruments. When the bubble created by this process finally burst, it was replaced with a housing bubble. Indeed a variety of bubbles, in financial assets, in housing, in credit, and a substantially overvalued dollar now threaten an historically unparalleled reassertion of the tendency to stagnation. But let us look first at the counteracting forces.
After the War, and as a result of wartime rationing, Americans had accumulated a very large fund of savings, and the time had come when these could finally be spent. This accounted for an immediate surge of consumption spending which temporarily averted the onset of recession. But the effectiveness of this source of spending was soon spent. What truly impelled the sustained growth of the Golden Age was 1) the resumption of a vast expansion of the automobile industry, and with it the stimulation of the broad range of investment and employment opportunities discussed above in connection with automobilization; 2) large-scale economic aid to Europe, which stimulated export demand; 3) a nationwide process of suburbanization, which, in tandem with the expansion of auto production, expanded significantly the demand for the output of every other major industry; 4) the emergence of what president Eisenhower christened the "military-industrial" complex, which provided additional stimulus to the industries most vulnerable to economic instability, the industries of DI, the capital goods sector; and finally 5) the steady and growing expansion of business and especially consumer credit, which in recent years has assumed elephantine proportions.
Three of these factors bear the two most important features of epoch-making innovations. The expansion of the auto industry, suburbanization, and the ever-increasing expansion and extension of credit all absorb massive amounts of investible surplus, and transform the mode of life of the entire population. In so doing they impart a massive push to the macro-growth process. The first two of these have their initial direct effect on investment. The third factor, the growing importance of credit, affects both investment and consumption, but the long-term trend of the credit industry in the U.S., evident now in hindsight, is much more significant in relation to consumption. There is now in the States a credit bubble of menacing proportions, with consumers now in debt to the tune of about107% of disposable income. The Marshall Plan (number 2 above) affected mainly and directly investment and employment, with boosts to consumption following thereupon. By the mid- to late-1970s, the employment-generating capacity of the military had declined. Washington determined, in the light of the defeat in Vietnam, that hi-tech warfare, which is of course technology- rather than labor-intensive, must replace traditional forms of subversion and aggression, in order to render less likely a repeat of the "Vietnam Syndrome."
It is worth mentioning that the military-industrial complex and the vast extension of consumer credit were what constituted what Joan Robinson called "bastard Keynesianism" in the United States. Recall that Keynes had insisted that fiscal and monetary policy were necessary but not sufficient conditions for avoiding stagnation. The tendency to stagnation could be offset for the long run only if some key industries were nationalized, and income redistributed. Nationalization would allow the State to offset lagging demand by providing cheap inputs to the private sector, thereby enabling lower prices. And redistributing income would transfer liquidity from those who had more than they could either consume or invest to those whose consumption demand was severely constrained.
American policymakers saw it as their challenge to reap the effects of nationalization and redistribution without actually nationalizing industries or redistributing income. The solution was ingenious: the military-industrial complex would be the functional equivalent of state-owned industries, and would, as noted above, stimulate the demand for the output of those very firms that produced capital goods. And the extension of consumer credit would allow working people to mortgage future years' incomes and spend more without a corresponding increase in either their private or their social wage.
As mentioned earlier, these forces counteracting the tendency to stagnation were all inherently limited and temporary. By the late 1960s, the automobile industry had achieved maturity, suburbanization had been accomplished, and aid to Europe had not only long ended, but had apparently created for America the economic equivalent of Frankenstein's monster. Europe and Japan were now formidable threats to U.S. economic hegemony. (Germany, for example, has overtaken the U.S. as an exporter of capital goods.) These three colossal absorbers of surplus were now no longer in operation. In the mid-1960s social spending had overtaken military spending as the larger share of government spending. And credit had begun to function as a supplement to declining real income, rather than a further addition to growing income.
These combined developments rendered the post-War counters to the realization of the tendency to stagnation obsolete. The result was the onset of stagnation not only in the U.S. but also worldwide. In America there has been overcapacity in autos, steel, shipbuilding and petrochemicals since the mid- to late-1970s.
This general picture is widely reflected in the business press. Business Week noted that "..supply outpaces demand everywhere, sending prices lower, eroding corporate profits and increasing layoffs" (Jan. 25, 1999, p. 118). The former chairman of General Electric claimed that "..there is excess capacity in almost every industry" (The New York Times, Nov. 16, 1997, p. 3). The Wall Street Journal noted that "..from cashmere to blue jeans, silver jewelry to aluminum cans, the world is in oversupply" (Nov. 30, 1998, p. A17). And The Economist fretted that " the gap between sales and capacity is "at its widest since the 1930s" (Feb. 20, 1999, p. 15). At this time excess capacity in steel is exceeding twenty percent, in autos it has fluctuated around 30%. And these figures look good in comparison to unused capacity numbers in the "industries of the future" of the "New Economy", semiconductors and telecommunications. Not long ago, ninety-seven percent of fibre optic capacity was idle.
MAINSTREAM ECONOMICS AND STAGNATION THEORY
Let us begin with the indisputable fact that the regime of neoliberalism has brought with it a substantial decline in economic growth. The most widely cited study on this issue, produced for the IECD by Angus Maddison, shows that the annual rate of growth of real global GDP fell from 4.9% in 1950-1973 to 3 % in 1973-1998, a drop of 39 %. Theoretical commitments can guide perception: neoliberal economists either denied or ignored the decline in global growth because of their reliance on Say's Law, that it is not possible for total demand to fall below full-capacity supply over the long run. In my earlier remarks I offered an explanation of sluggish growth rates since 1973. Many orthodox economics have done something similar: they have offered explanations of the initial rise in excess capacity. But what has not been explained is why global supply did not eventually adjust itself to the slower rate of demand growth, with the result that in the mid-1970s the global economy would enter a period of sluggish expansion. And it is worth mentioning that even Keynesian macro-theory is inadequate in this regard. It assumes that slow growth in aggregate demand will result in a proportionate decline in the growth of aggregate supply through its effect upon investment and therefore productivity.
An adequate explanation of the sustained character of excess capacity can be constructed from insights from Schumpeter, Marx and the contemporary economist James Crotty. The analysis that follows should be understood within the framework of the version of secular stagnation theory sketched above.
Before the shift to neoliberal policies by Jimmy Carter, Reagan and Thatcher, the global economy was already subject to downward pressures on demand growth resulting from two oil price shocks and the restrictive macro policy imposed in response to oil-price induced inflation. These impediments to demand growth were exacerbated by neoliberal policies. In combination, these forces led to a sharp rise in excess capacity in globally competing industries. At the same time competitive pressures were further intensified by the reduction of the market power of national oligopolies caused by the removal of protectionist barriers to the free movement of goods and money across national boundaries. Accordingly, competitive pressures between nations rose dramatically. In this context, normal stagnationist tendencies operated to further constrain global demand growth and further reproduce industrial capacity faster than either neoclassical or Keynesian theory could comprehend.
The Achilles Heel of neoclassical theory with respect to its inability to account for the persistence of overcapacity during the neoliberal period is its account of competition. So-called "perfect competition" is alleged to lead to maximum efficiency and the elimination of excess capacity. This claim appears inconsistent with the history of real-world, pre- and post-oligopolistic competition. Textbook-like competition has led to periodic market gluts or overproduction crises, price wars, plummeting profits, unbearable debt burdens and violent labor relations. Neoclassical theory banishes these demons with the aid of two assumptions which appear designed explicitly to make them impossible. The first assumption claims that production cost per unit rises rapidly as output increases, and the second that exit from low-profit industries is free or costless. If these assumptions were indeed true, then pure competition could not be shown to have stagnation- or depression-inducing effects. But these assumptions are, I shall suggest, false.
I will begin with the least plausible of these two assumptions. It states that there is free or costless exit from low-profit industries. But productive assets are typically immobile or irreversible, i.e., they are not liquid, and this forces a sizeable loss in the value of a firm's capital should it choose to leave an unprofitable industry. Whether they are sold on a second-hand market or reallocated to a different industry, productive assets will lose substantial value. Capital flowing out of the aerospace industry has been found to sell for one third of its replacement cost. Insolvent telecom firms in the U.S. have sold their assets for 20 cents on the dollar. And isn't this what one would expect? For it is usually poor profit prospects and/or great excess capacity that heighten a firm's incentive to leave an industry. But it is precisely those circumstances which deeply depress the price of industry-specific assets on the second-hand market, since the supply of these assets grows even as the demand for them has collapsed.
Before I turn to the slightly more plausible (yet still false) assumption -that unit production cost rises dramatically as output increases- I will outline the corollary of neoclassical theory itself which neoclassical economists seek to evade by introducing this assumption. The theory tells us that pure competition will force price down until it covers marginal cost. Now if unit production cost remained constant irrespective of the output level, then marginal production cost and average production cost per unit would be equal. When perfect competition forces price to equal marginal cost, total revenue will be equal to total production cost. But in this case there will be no revenue left over either to pay the "fixed" cost of maintaining capital stock in the face of depreciation or obsolescence, or to pay interest and/or dividends to investors. Thus, perfect competition is seen to cause the representative firm to suffer, in each production period, a loss that is equal to fixed costs. Keeping in mind that most important global industries have huge fixed costs, no industry could long survive the consequences of intense competition.
We seem to have found a tendency to stagnation or complete system breakdown where we would least expect to find it - in neoclassical theory itself. But the theory claims to have a response to this embarrassment. It simply denies the claim that appears to entail the undesired consequence, namely the claim that unit production cost remains constant no matter what the output level. Armed now with the (false) assumption that unit production cost rises rapidly as production increases, the conclusion is drawn that marginal cost and price are greater than average unit production cost. Thus, in equilibrium, the gap between price and average production cost is sufficiently large to cover all fixed costs. Let competition be as fierce as you wish, the typical firm will not lose money. Voila!
I have claimed that each of the rescuing assumptions discussed above is false. What would realistic assumptions about marginal cost and the reversibility of invested capital look like? To answer this question we must recognize the distinctive character of the dominant industries of global trade and investment. These industries include steel, autos, aircraft, shipbuilding, petrochemicals, consumer durables, electronics, semiconductors and banking. Studies of this type of industry suggest that marginal cost does not typically rise with output, with the rare exception of cases when the industry is producing near full capacity output. Marginal cost behaves as we would expect in cases of economies of scale: it remains constant or declines as capacity utilization rises. It follows that if free competition forces price to equal marginal cost in these industries, we should count on an ensuing wave of bankruptcies. Here again we see that neoclassical theory, corrected for unrealistic assumptions, seems to commit us to conceptualize mature capitalism as subject to the law of an inherent tendency to stagnation or worse.
The issue I am focusing on here turns on the dynamics of unrestricted competition among oligopolies in the context of economies of scale. The importance of economies of scale underscores the crucial similarity of all the dominant industries, including the new information-technology and telecommunications (ITC) industries. I stress this point because influential neoclassical economists have wanted to claim a significant difference, with respect to overcapacity problems, between the ITC industries and the other dominant industries. For purposes of explaining the persistence of excess capacity under neoliberalism, we want to remember that as scale economies grow, marginal costs fall as fixed costs per unit rise. Thus, the greater the economies of scale, the more destructive becomes the marginal cost pricing required by intense competition. With this in mind, we can more easily see that 1) these dynamics in especially conspicuous operation in the ITC industries, and 2) that such differences as there are between ITC and the other dominant oligopolies are insignificant for the analysis of secular stagnation theory, and of capitalist growth in general.
The key issue right now, recall, is the highly destructive consequences of the tendency of free competition among dominant industries to force price to equal marginal cost. That this is the case is easier to see in the ITC sector than in the other dominant industries. This is because in ITC marginal cost is often close to zero. Producing another copy of software or adding another customer to eBay is virtually costless. This has led many mainstream economists to argue that ITC industries are exempt from the laws of the neoclassical theory of perfect competition. Since ITC firms have marginal costs much lower than their large fixed costs, the argument goes, the possession of at least temporary monopoly power is the only guarantee of an incentive to produce anything at all. Without monopoly pricing power prices will be competed down to marginal cost and fixed costs will be unable to be covered. Thus, the motor of the "new economy" is said to be the constant pursuit of monopoly power. But, contrary to the neoclassical claim, none of this distinguishes significantly between ITC and other key industries. The drive to monopoly power is characteristic of all large corporations in the present age.
As Paul Sweezy argued in his Marshall Lectures, the typical firm in an oligopolized industry strives to be a monopolist. Each firm does this individually, and they all do it collectively. Individual firms seek monopoly status through the sales effort, where the firm's product is put forth as the best in the industry and as different from all the others. Firms within the same industry seek to approach monopoly status by collusion with respect to pricing policy, especially by agreeing to refrain from cutthroat price competition. For reasons developed at length above, therefore, all dominant firms, whether old- or new-economy operations, will tend to achieve monopoly status and to be chronically saddled with excess capacity.
A SCANDALOUSLY BRIEF LOOK AT SLOW-GROWTH CAPITALISM
We are in the midst of another unparalleled period of historical capitalism. Since the onset of stagnation, the median wage in the States has not changed at all for the vast majority of wage workers. Over the past six quarters the gowth of wage income has been negative. A brief sketch of the state of the U.S. economy toward the end of last year highlights features whose most plausible explanation may lie in the fact of secular stagnation. If stagnation theory is accurate, what follows is precisely what we would expect to find. The current state of the U.S. and the global economy is best understood, I believe, against the background too briefly elaborated above. Here is a picture of the U.S. economy today. The key to a healthy economy is job- and income-creating investment in capital goods, which in turn generates a virtuous cycle of further growth in investment, jobs and income. Ominously, the investment, growth, employment and income pictures are unprecedentedly dismal.
Compared to cyclical recoveries between 1949 and 1973, recoveries during the neoliberal period have been weak. Indeed, one or two of the post-1973 upturns has been weaker than some downturns during the Golden Age. Since the stock market collapse of four years ago, the situation has worsened. Growth rates since 2000 have been half their previous average. Even this weak performance required historically unprecedented fiscal and monetary stimulus: 13 rate cuts, three tax cuts, massive government deficits and record growth in money and credit.
Official figures mask the economy's most serious problems. Growth figures are annualized by U.S. statisticians. Thus, the much-touted 7.1% growth rate in the third quarter of 2003 was the one that would emerge after twelve months if the current trend were to continue. The same growth rate would have been reported in the eurozone as 1.8%. This is an uncommonly weak performance.
Investment data are equally misleading. Since the mid-1990s the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) has adjusted upward actual business dollar outlays on computers and related equipment to take into account quality improvements (faster processors, bigger hard drives, more memory). BEA calls this "hedonic adjustment." Accordingly, the BEA estimates that business high-tech investment quadrupled between 1996 and 2002, from $70.9 to $283.7. But in actual dollars spent, the increase was only from $70.9 billion to $74.2 billion, very low by historic standards. The high-tech boom was both greatly exaggerated and misleading. After all, neither profits nor wages are taken in "hedonically adjusted" dollars.
The difference between real and hedonic outlays explains what would otherwise be a paradoxical feature of the years 2000-2003: government was reporting big increases in high-tech investment, while manufacturers were bemoaning declining sales.
Hedonic pricing has accounted for a steadily rising percentage of all reported capital investment. But if we look at actual dollars spent, we find that since 1998 the growth rate of business fixed investment has actually been declining. Real capital investment has in fact not been this weak since the Great Depression.
The fudging of investment figures also obscures the sorry state of the jobs market. The Commerce Department's figures on nonresidential investment for the third and fourth quarters of 2003 reported increases of, respectively, 12.8 and 9.6%. A closer look reveals that the "adjusted" hi-tech sector is the only bright spot, with production and capacity rising, respectively, 24.6% and 11.1% over the past year. But hi-tech is not where significant jobs increases are found. Employment in hi-tech has declined steadily through the so-called "recovery" since its 2001 peak.
In non-hi-tech manufacturing, where investment figures are not adjusted, production from January 2003 to January 2004 rose only 0.9%, while capacity actually declined -0.2%. This represents a record nineteen-straight-month decline in mainline manufacturing capacity. Since it is mainline manufacturing which employs almost 95% of all manufacturing workers, it comes as no surprise that for the first time since the Great Depression the economy has gone more than three years without creating any jobs.
The jobs crisis is even worse than it appears. Here again statistical sleight-of-hand, this time by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), obscures economic reality. Based on data gathered employing the "net birth/death adjustment," BLS announced in April, 2004, that the long-awaited jobs recovery had finally arrived. Nonfarm payrolls had allegedly surged by a whopping 308,000 in March, 2004. The birth/death model uses business deaths to "impute" employment from business births. Thus, as more businesses fail, more new jobs are imputed to have materialized through business births. This improbable statistical artefact accounts for about half of the reported 308,000 March, 2004 payroll increase.
The birth/death model is based on statistics covering 1998-2002. This was a period of explosive telecom and dot.com startups, quite unlike today's flat economic landscape. Thus, two thirds of the 947,000 new jobs BLS "imputed" for March-May, 2004, were never actually counted by BLS and never reported by any firm.
BlS's household and establishment surveys tell a more sobering story. March employment by private industry actually fell by 175,000, and the number of self-employed workers declined by 288,000. Without the simultaneous increase of 439,000 government jobs, the March job announcement would have been a calamity. And both average weekly hours and total hours worked declined markedly, even as (according to the dubious birth/death findings) the work force increased. This is the first time in U.S. history that net job growth has been negative 26 months into a recovery.
The wage and salary picture has also set grim records. During the current recovery, wage and salary growth has actually been negative, at -0.6%, in contrast to the average increase of 7.2% characteristic of this point into each of the other eight post-War recoveries. In fact, median family income in the post-War period exhibits an ominous trend. From 1947 to 1967, real median family income rose by 75%. But since 1967, it has grown by only 30%.
Labor's losses have been capital's gain: since the peak of the last recovery, in the first quarter of 2001, corporate profits have risen 62.2%, compared to the average of 13.9% at the same point in the last eight recoveries. Never in American history has any recorded recovery had such a lopsided balance in the distribution of income gains between labor and capital.
Given the dismal investment, wage/salary and employment pictures, how has it been possible for consumption to have risen to 71% of GDP in the early nineties, from its prior post-War average of 66%? The answer is a growth rate of consumer debt never seen before in America. For the first time ever, in March 2001, overall debt levels (mortgage debt plus consumer debt, mainly credit card debt and car loans) rose above annual disposable income. And from 2001 to 2004 consumer debt rose from 101% to 116% of disposable income. In the first half of 2004, consumer borrowing has been at its highest ever. It has declined slightly in the meantime. So has consumer spending. Should Americans decide to significantly increase their saving and service debts, while lowering correspondingly their consumption expenditures, the global economy could experience a major disruption.
Up until very recently, consumers had stepped up their borrowing to compensate for slowing income growth. Thus, such growth as the U.S. has experienced in recent years has been almost entirely consumption- and debt-driven. More fundamentally, it has been bubble-driven, fueled principally by bubbles in home values and credit.
Since the collapse of stock market/hi-tech bubbles in 2001, the illusory "wealth effect" has been sustained, and consumer spending thereby encouraged, by another bubble, the enormous inflation of house prices. The biggest increase in household debt came from home mortgage debt, especially home mortgage refinancing. With mortgage rates low and home prices rising, households' home equity ballooned. Bloated home equity then provided rising collateral to underwrite still more borrowing.
What makes this especially problematic is that over the last ten years, the average family has suffered under large increases in health premiums, housing costs, tuition fees and child care costs. As a result, households' and individuals' margin of protection against insolvency has dramatically declined. Filings for personal bankruptcy are approaching a record high.
There are indications that these weaknesses and imbalances in the economy are reaching a critical mass. The mortgage refi boom has fizzled, and consumer spending is beginning to decline. Two years ago the Fed's quarterly Beige Book reported a disturbing shift in the composition of credit spending: more and more families are using their credit cards to finance spending on essentials, such as food and energy.
It is no exaggeration to say that both the U.S. economy and the global economy are hugely dependent on the American consumer's increasing willingness to spend more than (s)he makes. (Imported goods have been a rising proportion of all goods purchased here.) Thus, a decline in U.S. consumer spending portends further declines in investment, jobs and income. From January to July of 2004, consumer spending rose at an annual rate of 2.8%, down from 3.3% in 2003 and 3.1 % in 2002. For perspective, during the boom years 1999-2000, growth rates were 5.1% and 4.7%.
Spending on consumer durables is the most significant indicator of healthy growth, and the drastically lower spending in this area is cause for alarm: spending for consumer durables was down to $23.5 billion in the first seven months of this year, in contrast to $71 billion on 2003 and $58 billion in 2002.
Should consumer spending continue to decline, the economy faces the genuine likelihood of a severe recession. Of course not a single American politician addresses this issue.
What is required is a shift from bubble-, debt-, and consumption-driven growth to investment- and income-driven growth. This in turn necessitates a decline in Americas principal export, jobs. Domestic job growth, a higher minimum wage, tax cuts aimed predominantly at low- and middle-income families, a sharp reduction in defense spending and a redirection of these funds to long-neglected and pressing social needs such as health care reform, the provision of universal pre-school, and across-the-board repair and upgrading of America's deteriorated infrastructure of roads, highways,tunnels and bridges, all these should be at the forefront of a Democratic administration's agenda. The restoration of infrastructure is especially labor intensive, and would generate an enormous number of productive jobs. And as a national project spearheaded by government initiative, government would emerge as a major employer.
All this si entirely incompatible with the overwhelming neoliberal bent of even the most "liberal" political leaders. It was after all Bill Clinton who urinated on the grave of Franklin Roosevelt when he proclaimed "the end of welfare as we know it".
As unfashionable as it is to suggest such a thing at a conference of economists, the only hope for the world's majority seems to be the revival of the kinds of mass movements witnessed here in May of 1968, and throughout the world during the 1960s. And time may be short.
Alan Nasser is Professor emeritus of Political Economy and Philosophy at The Evergreen State College. His book, The “New Normal”: Persistent Austerity, Declining Democracy and the Globalization of Resistance will be published by Pluto Press in 2013. If you would like to be notified when the book is released, please send a request to firstname.lastname@example.org
Thomas Palley » Blog Archive » Explaining Stagnation Why it Matters
John Bellamy Foster and Fred Magdoff clearly identify stagnation in their 2009 book The Great Financial Crisis: Causes and Consequences (HERE). They conclude with a section titled “Back to the real economy: the stagnation problem” and they write:
“It was the reality of economic stagnation beginning in the 1970s, as heterodox economists Ricardo Belliofiore and Joseph Halevi have recently emphasized, that led to the emergence of “the new financialized capitalist regime,” a kind of “paradoxical financial Keynesianiasm” whereby demand in the economy was stimulated primarily “thanks to asset-bubbles” (Foster and Magdoff, p.129).”
My own 2009 New America Foundation report, “America’s Exhausted Paradigm: Macroeconomic Causes of the Financial Crisis and Great Recession”, concluded (HERE):
“The bottom line is macroeconomic failure rooted in America’s flawed economic paradigm is the ultimate cause of the financial crisis and Great Recession…. Now, there is a grave danger that policymakers only focus on financial market reform and ignore reform of America’s flawed economic paradigm. In that event, though the economy may stabilize, it will likely be unable to escape the pull of economic stagnation. That is because stagnation is the logical next stage of the existing paradigm.”
That report became a core chapter in my 2012 book, From Financial Crisis to Stagnation, the blurb for which reads (HERE):
“The U.S. economy today is confronted with the prospect of extended stagnation. This book explores why…. Financial deregulation and the house price bubble kept the economy going by making ever more credit available. As the economy cannibalized itself by undercutting income distribution and accumulating debt, it needed larger speculative bubbles to grow. That process ended when the housing bubble burst. The earlier post–World War II economic model based on rising middle-class incomes has been dismantled, while the new neoliberal model has imploded. Absent a change of policy paradigm, the logical next step is stagnation. The political challenge we face now is how to achieve paradigm change.”
The big analytical difference between Foster and Magdoff and myself is that they see stagnation as inherent to capitalism whereas I see it as the product of neoliberal economic policy. Foster and Magdoff partake of the Baran-Sweezy tradition that recommends deeper socialist transformation. I use a structural Keynesian framework that recommends reconstructing the income and demand generation mechanism via policies that include rebuilding worker bargaining power, reforming globalization, and reining in corporations and financial markets.
Larry Summers’ story of serial bubbles delaying stagnation has substantial similarities with both accounts but he avoids blaming either capitalism or neoliberalism. That is hardly surprising as Summers has been a chief architect of the neoliberal system and remains committed to it, though he now wants to soften its impact. Instead, he appeals to the black box of “secular stagnation” as ultimate cause and suggests fiscal policies that would ameliorate the demand shortage problem. However, those policies would not remedy the root cause of stagnation as they leave the economic architecture unchanged.
Though Summers and Krugman are relative late-comers to the stagnation hypothesis, they have still done a great public service by drawing attention to it. Now that stagnation has been identified, the real debate can begin.
The questions are what caused stagnation and what must be done to restore shared prosperity? There is no guarantee we will answer those questions correctly (my prior is mainstream economists will continue their track record of getting it wrong). But it is absolutely certain we will not get the right answer if we do not ask the right question. So thank you Larry Summers and Paul Krugman for putting stagnation on the table. Let the debate begin.
Tha means the major defeat for “stabilization policies” that were supposed to smooth the capitalist industrial cycle and abolish panics. And the problem preceeds the 2008 panic itself.
The highly misleading unemployment rate calculated by the U.S. Department of Labor notwithstanding, there has been a massive growth in long-term unemployment in the U.S. in the wake of the crisis, as shown by the declining percentage of the U.S. population actually working.
The current situation also refute the key tenet of neoclassical economy (which is pseudo-religious doctrine, so that only increase fanatic devotion of its well-paid adherents). Neoclassical economists insisted that since a “free market economy” naturally tends toward an equilibrium with full employment of both workers and machines, the economy should should quickly return to “full employment” after a recession. This is not the case. See also Secular Stagnation Lawrence H. Summers
There were several uncessful attempts to explaint his situation from neoclassical positions. In Secular Stagnation, Coalmines, Bubbles, and Larry Summers - NYTimes.com Paul Krugman emphasized the liquidity trap – zero lower bound to interest rates which supposedly prevents spending from reaching a level sufficient for full employment.
Larry’s formulation of our current economic situation is the same as my own. Although he doesn’t use the words “liquidity trap”, he works from the understanding that we are an economy in which monetary policy is de facto constrained by the zero lower bound (even if you think central banks could be doing more), and that this corresponds to a situation in which the “natural” rate of interest – the rate at which desired savings and desired investment would be equal at full employment – is negative.
And as he also notes, in this situation the normal rules of economic policy don’t apply. As I like to put it, virtue becomes vice and prudence becomes folly. Saving hurts the economy – it even hurts investment, thanks to the paradox of thrift. Fixating on debt and deficits deepens the depression. And so on down the line.
This is the kind of environment in which Keynes’s hypothetical policy of burying currency in coalmines and letting the private sector dig it up – or my version, which involves faking a threat from nonexistent space aliens – becomes a good thing; spending is good, and while productive spending is best, unproductive spending is still better than nothing.
Larry also indirectly states an important corollary: this isn’t just true of public spending. Private spending that is wholly or partially wasteful is also a good thing, unless it somehow stores up trouble for the future. That last bit is an important qualification. But suppose that U.S. corporations, which are currently sitting on a huge hoard of cash, were somehow to become convinced that it would be a great idea to fit out all their employees as cyborgs, with Google Glass and smart wristwatches everywhere. And suppose that three years later they realized that there wasn’t really much payoff to all that spending. Nonetheless, the resulting investment boom would have given us several years of much higher employment, with no real waste, since the resources employed would otherwise have been idle.
OK, this is still mostly standard, although a lot of people hate, just hate, this kind of logic – they want economics to be a morality play, and they don’t care how many people have to suffer in the process.
But now comes the radical part of Larry’s presentation: his suggestion that this may not be a temporary state of affairs.
2. An economy that needs bubbles?
We now know that the economic expansion of 2003-2007 was driven by a bubble. You can say the same about the latter part of the 90s expansion; and you can in fact say the same about the later years of the Reagan expansion, which was driven at that point by runaway thrift institutions and a large bubble in commercial real estate.
So you might be tempted to say that monetary policy has consistently been too loose. After all, haven’t low interest rates been encouraging repeated bubbles?
But as Larry emphasizes, there’s a big problem with the claim that monetary policy has been too loose: where’s the inflation? Where has the overheated economy been visible?
So how can you reconcile repeated bubbles with an economy showing no sign of inflationary pressures? Summers’s answer is that we may be an economy that needs bubbles just to achieve something near full employment – that in the absence of bubbles the economy has a negative natural rate of interest. And this hasn’t just been true since the 2008 financial crisis; it has arguably been true, although perhaps with increasing severity, since the 1980s.
One way to quantify this is, I think, to look at household debt. Here’s the ratio of household debt to GDP since the 50s:
There was a sharp increase in the ratio after World War II, but from a low base, as families moved to the suburbs and all that. Then there were about 25 years of rough stability, from 1960 to around 1985. After that, however, household debt rose rapidly and inexorably, until the crisis struck.
So with all that household borrowing, you might have expected the period 1985-2007 to be one of strong inflationary pressure, high interest rates, or both. In fact, you see neither – this was the era of the Great Moderation, a time of low inflation and generally low interest rates. Without all that increase in household debt, interest rates would presumably have to have been considerably lower – maybe negative. In other words, you can argue that our economy has been trying to get into the liquidity trap for a number of years, and that it only avoided the trap for a while thanks to successive bubbles.
And if that’s how you see things, when looking forward you have to regard the liquidity trap not as an exceptional state of affairs but as the new normal.
3. Secular stagnation?
How did this happen? Larry explicitly invokes the notion of secular stagnation, associated in particular with Alvin Hansen (pdf). He doesn’t say why this might be happening to us now, but it’s not hard to think of possible reasons.
Back in the day, Hansen stressed demographic factors: he thought slowing population growth would mean low investment demand. Then came the baby boom. But this time around the slowdown is here, and looks real.
Think of it this way: during the period 1960-85, when the U.S. economy seemed able to achieve full employment without bubbles, our labor force grew an average 2.1 percent annually. In part this reflected the maturing of the baby boomers, in part the move of women into the labor force.
This growth made sustaining investment fairly easy: the business of providing Americans with new houses, new offices, and so on easily absorbed a fairly high fraction of GDP.
Now look forward. The Census projects that the population aged 18 to 64 will grow at an annual rate of only 0.2 percent between 2015 and 2025. Unless labor force participation not only stops declining but starts rising rapidly again, this means a slower-growth economy, and thanks to the accelerator effect, lower investment demand.
By the way, in a Samuelson consumption-loan model, the natural rate of interest equals the rate of population growth. Reality is a lot more complicated than that, but I don’t think it’s foolish to guess that the decline in population growth has reduced the natural real rate of interest by something like an equal amount (and to note that Japan’s shrinking working-age population is probably a major factor in its secular stagnation.)
There may be other factors – a Bob Gordonesque decline in innovation, etc.. The point is that it’s not hard to think of reasons why the liquidity trap could be a lot more persistent than anyone currently wants to admit.
4. Destructive virtue
If you take a secular stagnation view seriously, it has some radical implications – and Larry goes there.
Currently, even policymakers who are willing to concede that the liquidity trap makes nonsense of conventional notions of policy prudence are busy preparing for the time when normality returns. This means that they are preoccupied with the idea that they must act now to head off future crises. Yet this crisis isn’t over – and as Larry says, “Most of what would be done under the aegis of preventing a future crisis would be counterproductive.”
He goes on to say that the officially respectable policy agenda involves “doing less with monetary policy than was done before and doing less with fiscal policy than was done before,” even though the economy remains deeply depressed. And he says, a bit fuzzily but bravely all the same, that even improved financial regulation is not necessarily a good thing – that it may discourage irresponsible lending and borrowing at a time when more spending of any kind is good for the economy.
Amazing stuff – and if we really are looking at secular stagnation, he’s right.
Of course, the underlying problem in all of this is simply that real interest rates are too high. But, you say, they’re negative – zero nominal rates minus at least some expected inflation. To which the answer is, so? If the market wants a strongly negative real interest rate, we’ll have persistent problems until we find a way to deliver such a rate.
One way to get there would be to reconstruct our whole monetary system – say, eliminate paper money and pay negative interest rates on deposits. Another way would be to take advantage of the next boom – whether it’s a bubble or driven by expansionary fiscal policy – to push inflation substantially higher, and keep it there. Or maybe, possibly, we could go the Krugman 1998/Abe 2013 route of pushing up inflation through the sheer power of self-fulfilling expectations.
Any such suggestions are, of course, met with outrage. How dare anyone suggest that virtuous individuals, people who are prudent and save for the future, face expropriation? How can you suggest steadily eroding their savings either through inflation or through negative interest rates? It’s tyranny!
But in a liquidity trap saving may be a personal virtue, but it’s a social vice. And in an economy facing secular stagnation, this isn’t just a temporary state of affairs, it’s the norm. Assuring people that they can get a positive rate of return on safe assets means promising them something the market doesn’t want to deliver – it’s like farm price supports, except for rentiers.
Oh, and one last point. If we’re going to have persistently negative real interest rates along with at least somewhat positive overall economic growth, the panic over public debt looks even more foolish than people like me have been saying: servicing the debt in the sense of stabilizing the ratio of debt to GDP has no cost, in fact negative cost.
I could go on, but by now I hope you’ve gotten the point. What Larry did at the IMF wasn’t just give an interesting speech. He laid down what amounts to a very radical manifesto. And I very much fear that he may be right.
A secret question hovers over us, a sense of disappointment, a broken promise we were given as children about what our adult world was supposed to be like. I am referring not to the standard false promises that children are always given (about how the world is fair, or how those who work hard shall be rewarded), but to a particular generational promise—given to those who were children in the fifties, sixties, seventies, or eighties—one that was never quite articulated as a promise but rather as a set of assumptions about what our adult world would be like. And since it was never quite promised, now that it has failed to come true, we’re left confused: indignant, but at the same time, embarrassed at our own indignation, ashamed we were ever so silly to believe our elders to begin with.
Where, in short, are the flying cars? Where are the force fields, tractor beams, teleportation pods, antigravity sleds, tricorders, immortality drugs, colonies on Mars, and all the other technological wonders any child growing up in the mid-to-late twentieth century assumed would exist by now? Even those inventions that seemed ready to emerge—like cloning or cryogenics—ended up betraying their lofty promises. What happened to them?
We are well informed of the wonders of computers, as if this is some sort of unanticipated compensation, but, in fact, we haven’t moved even computing to the point of progress that people in the fifties expected we’d have reached by now. We don’t have computers we can have an interesting conversation with, or robots that can walk our dogs or take our clothes to the Laundromat.
As someone who was eight years old at the time of the Apollo moon landing, I remember calculating that I would be thirty-nine in the magic year 2000 and wondering what the world would be like. Did I expect I would be living in such a world of wonders? Of course. Everyone did. Do I feel cheated now? It seemed unlikely that I’d live to see all the things I was reading about in science fiction, but it never occurred to me that I wouldn’t see any of them.
At the turn of the millennium, I was expecting an outpouring of reflections on why we had gotten the future of technology so wrong. Instead, just about all the authoritative voices—both Left and Right—began their reflections from the assumption that we do live in an unprecedented new technological utopia of one sort or another.
The common way of dealing with the uneasy sense that this might not be so is to brush it aside, to insist all the progress that could have happened has happened and to treat anything more as silly. “Oh, you mean all that Jetsons stuff?” I’m asked—as if to say, but that was just for children! Surely, as grown-ups, we understand The Jetsons offered as accurate a view of the future as The Flintstones offered of the Stone Age.
Surely, as grown-ups, we understand The Jetsons offered as accurate a view of the future as The Flintstones did of the Stone Age.
Even in the seventies and eighties, in fact, sober sources such as National Geographic and the Smithsonian were informing children of imminent space stations and expeditions to Mars. Creators of science fiction movies used to come up with concrete dates, often no more than a generation in the future, in which to place their futuristic fantasies. In 1968, Stanley Kubrick felt that a moviegoing audience would find it perfectly natural to assume that only thirty-three years later, in 2001, we would have commercial moon flights, city-like space stations, and computers with human personalities maintaining astronauts in suspended animation while traveling to Jupiter. Video telephony is just about the only new technology from that particular movie that has appeared—and it was technically possible when the movie was showing. 2001 can be seen as a curio, but what about Star Trek? The Star Trek mythos was set in the sixties, too, but the show kept getting revived, leaving audiences for Star Trek Voyager in, say, 2005, to try to figure out what to make of the fact that according to the logic of the program, the world was supposed to be recovering from fighting off the rule of genetically engineered supermen in the Eugenics Wars of the nineties.
By 1989, when the creators of Back to the Future II were dutifully placing flying cars and anti-gravity hoverboards in the hands of ordinary teenagers in the year 2015, it wasn’t clear if this was meant as a prediction or a joke.
The usual move in science fiction is to remain vague about the dates, so as to render “the future” a zone of pure fantasy, no different than Middle Earth or Narnia, or like Star Wars, “a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away.” As a result, our science fiction future is, most often, not a future at all, but more like an alternative dimension, a dream-time, a technological Elsewhere, existing in days to come in the same sense that elves and dragon-slayers existed in the past—another screen for the displacement of moral dramas and mythic fantasies into the dead ends of consumer pleasure.
Might the cultural sensibility that came to be referred to as postmodernism best be seen as a prolonged meditation on all the technological changes that never happened? The question struck me as I watched one of the recent Star Wars movies. The movie was terrible, but I couldn’t help but feel impressed by the quality of the special effects. Recalling the clumsy special effects typical of fifties sci-fi films, I kept thinking how impressed a fifties audience would have been if they’d known what we could do by now—only to realize, “Actually, no. They wouldn’t be impressed at all, would they? They thought we’d be doing this kind of thing by now. Not just figuring out more sophisticated ways to simulate it.”
That last word—simulate—is key. The technologies that have advanced since the seventies are mainly either medical technologies or information technologies—largely, technologies of simulation. They are technologies of what Jean Baudrillard and Umberto Eco called the “hyper-real,” the ability to make imitations that are more realistic than originals. The postmodern sensibility, the feeling that we had somehow broken into an unprecedented new historical period in which we understood that there is nothing new; that grand historical narratives of progress and liberation were meaningless; that everything now was simulation, ironic repetition, fragmentation, and pastiche—all this makes sense in a technological environment in which the only breakthroughs were those that made it easier to create, transfer, and rearrange virtual projections of things that either already existed, or, we came to realize, never would. Surely, if we were vacationing in geodesic domes on Mars or toting about pocket-size nuclear fusion plants or telekinetic mind-reading devices no one would ever have been talking like this. The postmodern moment was a desperate way to take what could otherwise only be felt as a bitter disappointment and to dress it up as something epochal, exciting, and new.
In the earliest formulations, which largely came out of the Marxist tradition, a lot of this technological background was acknowledged. Fredric Jameson’s “Postmodernism, or the Cultural Logic of Late Capitalism” proposed the term “postmodernism” to refer to the cultural logic appropriate to a new, technological phase of capitalism, one that had been heralded by Marxist economist Ernest Mandel as early as 1972. Mandel had argued that humanity stood at the verge of a “third technological revolution,” as profound as the Agricultural or Industrial Revolution, in which computers, robots, new energy sources, and new information technologies would replace industrial labor—the “end of work” as it soon came to be called—reducing us all to designers and computer technicians coming up with crazy visions that cybernetic factories would produce.
End of work arguments were popular in the late seventies and early eighties as social thinkers pondered what would happen to the traditional working-class-led popular struggle once the working class no longer existed. (The answer: it would turn into identity politics.) Jameson thought of himself as exploring the forms of consciousness and historical sensibilities likely to emerge from this new age.
What happened, instead, is that the spread of information technologies and new ways of organizing transport—the containerization of shipping, for example—allowed those same industrial jobs to be outsourced to East Asia, Latin America, and other countries where the availability of cheap labor allowed manufacturers to employ much less technologically sophisticated production-line techniques than they would have been obliged to employ at home.
From the perspective of those living in Europe, North America, and Japan, the results did seem to be much as predicted. Smokestack industries did disappear; jobs came to be divided between a lower stratum of service workers and an upper stratum sitting in antiseptic bubbles playing with computers. But below it all lay an uneasy awareness that the postwork civilization was a giant fraud. Our carefully engineered high-tech sneakers were not being produced by intelligent cyborgs or self-replicating molecular nanotechnology; they were being made on the equivalent of old-fashioned Singer sewing machines, by the daughters of Mexican and Indonesian farmers who, as the result of WTO or NAFTA–sponsored trade deals, had been ousted from their ancestral lands. It was a guilty awareness that lay beneath the postmodern sensibility and its celebration of the endless play of images and surfaces.
Why did the projected explosion of technological growth everyone was expecting—the moon bases, the robot factories—fail to happen? There are two possibilities. Either our expectations about the pace of technological change were unrealistic (in which case, we need to know why so many intelligent people believed they were not) or our expectations were not unrealistic (in which case, we need to know what happened to derail so many credible ideas and prospects).
Most social analysts choose the first explanation and trace the problem to the Cold War space race. Why, these analysts wonder, did both the United States and the Soviet Union become so obsessed with the idea of manned space travel? It was never an efficient way to engage in scientific research. And it encouraged unrealistic ideas of what the human future would be like.
Could the answer be that both the United States and the Soviet Union had been, in the century before, societies of pioneers, one expanding across the Western frontier, the other across Siberia? Didn’t they share a commitment to the myth of a limitless, expansive future, of human colonization of vast empty spaces, that helped convince the leaders of both superpowers they had entered into a “space age” in which they were battling over control of the future itself? All sorts of myths were at play here, no doubt, but that proves nothing about the feasibility of the project.
Some of those science fiction fantasies (at this point we can’t know which ones) could have been brought into being. For earlier generations, many science fiction fantasies had been brought into being. Those who grew up at the turn of the century reading Jules Verne or H.G. Wells imagined the world of, say, 1960 with flying machines, rocket ships, submarines, radio, and television—and that was pretty much what they got. If it wasn’t unrealistic in 1900 to dream of men traveling to the moon, then why was it unrealistic in the sixties to dream of jet-packs and robot laundry-maids?
In fact, even as those dreams were being outlined, the material base for their achievement was beginning to be whittled away. There is reason to believe that even by the fifties and sixties, the pace of technological innovation was slowing down from the heady pace of the first half of the century. There was a last spate in the fifties when microwave ovens (1954), the Pill (1957), and lasers (1958) all appeared in rapid succession. But since then, technological advances have taken the form of clever new ways of combining existing technologies (as in the space race) and new ways of putting existing technologies to consumer use (the most famous example is television, invented in 1926, but mass produced only after the war.) Yet, in part because the space race gave everyone the impression that remarkable advances were happening, the popular impression during the sixties was that the pace of technological change was speeding up in terrifying, uncontrollable ways.
Alvin Toffler’s 1970 best seller Future Shock argued that almost all the social problems of the sixties could be traced back to the increasing pace of technological change. The endless outpouring of scientific breakthroughs transformed the grounds of daily existence, and left Americans without any clear idea of what normal life was. Just consider the family, where not just the Pill, but also the prospect of in vitro fertilization, test tube babies, and sperm and egg donation were about to make the idea of motherhood obsolete.
Humans were not psychologically prepared for the pace of change, Toffler wrote. He coined a term for the phenomenon: “accelerative thrust.” It had begun with the Industrial Revolution, but by roughly 1850, the effect had become unmistakable. Not only was everything around us changing, but most of it—human knowledge, the size of the population, industrial growth, energy use—was changing exponentially. The only solution, Toffler argued, was to begin some kind of control over the process, to create institutions that would assess emerging technologies and their likely effects, to ban technologies likely to be too socially disruptive, and to guide development in the direction of social harmony.
While many of the historical trends Toffler describes are accurate, the book appeared when most of these exponential trends halted. It was right around 1970 when the increase in the number of scientific papers published in the world—a figure that had doubled every fifteen years since, roughly, 1685—began leveling off. The same was true of books and patents.
Toffler’s use of acceleration was particularly unfortunate. For most of human history, the top speed at which human beings could travel had been around 25 miles per hour. By 1900 it had increased to 100 miles per hour, and for the next seventy years it did seem to be increasing exponentially. By the time Toffler was writing, in 1970, the record for the fastest speed at which any human had traveled stood at roughly 25,000 mph, achieved by the crew of Apollo 10 in 1969, just one year before. At such an exponential rate, it must have seemed reasonable to assume that within a matter of decades, humanity would be exploring other solar systems.
Since 1970, no further increase has occurred. The record for the fastest a human has ever traveled remains with the crew of Apollo 10. True, the commercial airliner Concorde, which first flew in 1969, reached a maximum speed of 1,400 mph. And the Soviet Tupolev Tu-144, which flew first, reached an even faster speed of 1,553 mph. But those speeds not only have failed to increase; they have decreased since the Tupolev Tu-144 was cancelled and the Concorde was abandoned.
None of this stopped Toffler’s own career. He kept retooling his analysis to come up with new spectacular pronouncements. In 1980, he produced The Third Wave, its argument lifted from Ernest Mandel’s “third technological revolution”—except that while Mandel thought these changes would spell the end of capitalism, Toffler assumed capitalism was eternal. By 1990, Toffler was the personal intellectual guru to Republican congressman Newt Gingrich, who claimed that his 1994 “Contract With America” was inspired, in part, by the understanding that the United States needed to move from an antiquated, materialist, industrial mind-set to a new, free-market, information age, Third Wave civilization.
There are all sorts of ironies in this connection. One of Toffler’s greatest achievements was inspiring the government to create an Office of Technology Assessment (OTA). One of Gingrich’s first acts on winning control of the House of Representatives in 1995 was defunding the OTA as an example of useless government extravagance. Still, there’s no contradiction here. By this time, Toffler had long since given up on influencing policy by appealing to the general public; he was making a living largely by giving seminars to CEOs and corporate think tanks. His insights had been privatized.
Gingrich liked to call himself a “conservative futurologist.” This, too, might seem oxymoronic; but, in fact, Toffler’s own conception of futurology was never progressive. Progress was always presented as a problem that needed to be solved.
Toffler might best be seen as a lightweight version of the nineteenth-century social theorist Auguste Comte, who believed that he was standing on the brink of a new age—in his case, the Industrial Age—driven by the inexorable progress of technology, and that the social cataclysms of his times were caused by the social system not adjusting. The older feudal order had developed Catholic theology, a way of thinking about man’s place in the cosmos perfectly suited to the social system of the time, as well as an institutional structure, the Church, that conveyed and enforced such ideas in a way that could give everyone a sense of meaning and belonging. The Industrial Age had developed its own system of ideas—science—but scientists had not succeeded in creating anything like the Catholic Church. Comte concluded that we needed to develop a new science, which he dubbed “sociology,” and said that sociologists should play the role of priests in a new Religion of Society that would inspire everyone with a love of order, community, work discipline, and family values. Toffler was less ambitious; his futurologists were not supposed to play the role of priests.
Gingrich had a second guru, a libertarian theologian named George Gilder, and Gilder, like Toffler, was obsessed with technology and social change. In an odd way, Gilder was more optimistic. Embracing a radical version of Mandel’s Third Wave argument, he insisted that what we were seeing with the rise of computers was an “overthrow of matter.” The old, materialist Industrial Society, where value came from physical labor, was giving way to an Information Age where value emerges directly from the minds of entrepreneurs, just as the world had originally appeared ex nihilo from the mind of God, just as money, in a proper supply-side economy, emerged ex nihilo from the Federal Reserve and into the hands of value-creating capitalists. Supply-side economic policies, Gilder concluded, would ensure that investment would continue to steer away from old government boondoggles like the space program and toward more productive information and medical technologies.
But if there was a conscious, or semi-conscious, move away from investment in research that might lead to better rockets and robots, and toward research that would lead to such things as laser printers and CAT scans, it had begun well before Toffler’s Future Shock (1970) and Gilder’s Wealth and Poverty (1981). What their success shows is that the issues they raised—that existing patterns of technological development would lead to social upheaval, and that we needed to guide technological development in directions that did not challenge existing structures of authority—echoed in the corridors of power. Statesmen and captains of industry had been thinking about such questions for some time.
Industrial capitalism has fostered an extremely rapid rate of scientific advance and technological innovation—one with no parallel in previous human history. Even capitalism’s greatest detractors, Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels, celebrated its unleashing of the “productive forces.” Marx and Engels also believed that capitalism’s continual need to revolutionize the means of industrial production would be its undoing. Marx argued that, for certain technical reasons, value—and therefore profits—can be extracted only from human labor. Competition forces factory owners to mechanize production, to reduce labor costs, but while this is to the short-term advantage of the firm, mechanization’s effect is to drive down the general rate of profit.
For 150 years, economists have debated whether all this is true. But if it is true, then the decision by industrialists not to pour research funds into the invention of the robot factories that everyone was anticipating in the sixties, and instead to relocate their factories to labor-intensive, low-tech facilities in China or the Global South makes a great deal of sense.
As I’ve noted, there’s reason to believe the pace of technological innovation in productive processes—the factories themselves—began to slow in the fifties and sixties, but the side effects of America’s rivalry with the Soviet Union made innovation appear to accelerate. There was the awesome space race, alongside frenetic efforts by U.S. industrial planners to apply existing technologies to consumer purposes, to create an optimistic sense of burgeoning prosperity and guaranteed progress that would undercut the appeal of working-class politics.
These moves were reactions to initiatives from the Soviet Union. But this part of the history is difficult for Americans to remember, because at the end of the Cold War, the popular image of the Soviet Union switched from terrifyingly bold rival to pathetic basket case—the exemplar of a society that could not work. Back in the fifties, in fact, many United States planners suspected the Soviet system worked better. Certainly, they recalled the fact that in the thirties, while the United States had been mired in depression, the Soviet Union had maintained almost unprecedented economic growth rates of 10 percent to 12 percent a year—an achievement quickly followed by the production of tank armies that defeated Nazi Germany, then by the launching of Sputnik in 1957, then by the first manned spacecraft, the Vostok, in 1961.
It’s often said the Apollo moon landing was the greatest historical achievement of Soviet communism. Surely, the United States would never have contemplated such a feat had it not been for the cosmic ambitions of the Soviet Politburo. We are used to thinking of the Politburo as a group of unimaginative gray bureaucrats, but they were bureaucrats who dared to dream astounding dreams. The dream of world revolution was only the first. It’s also true that most of them—changing the course of mighty rivers, this sort of thing—either turned out to be ecologically and socially disastrous, or, like Joseph Stalin’s one-hundred-story Palace of the Soviets or a twenty-story statue of Vladimir Lenin, never got off the ground.
After the initial successes of the Soviet space program, few of these schemes were realized, but the leadership never ceased coming up with new ones. Even in the eighties, when the United States was attempting its own last, grandiose scheme, Star Wars, the Soviets were planning to transform the world through creative uses of technology. Few outside of Russia remember most of these projects, but great resources were devoted to them. It’s also worth noting that unlike the Star Wars project, which was designed to sink the Soviet Union, most were not military in nature: as, for instance, the attempt to solve the world hunger problem by harvesting lakes and oceans with an edible bacteria called spirulina, or to solve the world energy problem by launching hundreds of gigantic solar-power platforms into orbit and beaming the electricity back to earth.
The American victory in the space race meant that, after 1968, U.S. planners no longer took the competition seriously. As a result, the mythology of the final frontier was maintained, even as the direction of research and development shifted away from anything that might lead to the creation of Mars bases and robot factories.
The standard line is that all this was a result of the triumph of the market. The Apollo program was a Big Government project, Soviet-inspired in the sense that it required a national effort coordinated by government bureaucracies. As soon as the Soviet threat drew safely out of the picture, though, capitalism was free to revert to lines of technological development more in accord with its normal, decentralized, free-market imperatives—such as privately funded research into marketable products like personal computers. This is the line that men like Toffler and Gilder took in the late seventies and early eighties.
In fact, the United States never did abandon gigantic, government-controlled schemes of technological development. Mainly, they just shifted to military research—and not just to Soviet-scale schemes like Star Wars, but to weapons projects, research in communications and surveillance technologies, and similar security-related concerns. To some degree this had always been true: the billions poured into missile research had always dwarfed the sums allocated to the space program. Yet by the seventies, even basic research came to be conducted following military priorities. One reason we don’t have robot factories is because roughly 95 percent of robotics research funding has been channeled through the Pentagon, which is more interested in developing unmanned drones than in automating paper mills.
A case could be made that even the shift to research and development on information technologies and medicine was not so much a reorientation toward market-driven consumer imperatives, but part of an all-out effort to follow the technological humbling of the Soviet Union with total victory in the global class war—seen simultaneously as the imposition of absolute U.S. military dominance overseas, and, at home, the utter rout of social movements.
For the technologies that did emerge proved most conducive to surveillance, work discipline, and social control. Computers have opened up certain spaces of freedom, as we’re constantly reminded, but instead of leading to the workless utopia Abbie Hoffman imagined, they have been employed in such a way as to produce the opposite effect. They have enabled a financialization of capital that has driven workers desperately into debt, and, at the same time, provided the means by which employers have created “flexible” work regimes that have both destroyed traditional job security and increased working hours for almost everyone. Along with the export of factory jobs, the new work regime has routed the union movement and destroyed any possibility of effective working-class politics.
Meanwhile, despite unprecedented investment in research on medicine and life sciences, we await cures for cancer and the common cold, and the most dramatic medical breakthroughs we have seen have taken the form of drugs such as Prozac, Zoloft, or Ritalin—tailor-made to ensure that the new work demands don’t drive us completely, dysfunctionally crazy.
With results like these, what will the epitaph for neoliberalism look like? I think historians will conclude it was a form of capitalism that systematically prioritized political imperatives over economic ones. Given a choice between a course of action that would make capitalism seem the only possible economic system, and one that would transform capitalism into a viable, long-term economic system, neoliberalism chooses the former every time. There is every reason to believe that destroying job security while increasing working hours does not create a more productive (let alone more innovative or loyal) workforce. Probably, in economic terms, the result is negative—an impression confirmed by lower growth rates in just about all parts of the world in the eighties and nineties.
But the neoliberal choice has been effective in depoliticizing labor and overdetermining the future. Economically, the growth of armies, police, and private security services amounts to dead weight. It’s possible, in fact, that the very dead weight of the apparatus created to ensure the ideological victory of capitalism will sink it. But it’s also easy to see how choking off any sense of an inevitable, redemptive future that could be different from our world is a crucial part of the neoliberal project.
At this point all the pieces would seem to be falling neatly into place. By the sixties, conservative political forces were growing skittish about the socially disruptive effects of technological progress, and employers were beginning to worry about the economic impact of mechanization. The fading Soviet threat allowed for a reallocation of resources in directions seen as less challenging to social and economic arrangements, or indeed directions that could support a campaign of reversing the gains of progressive social movements and achieving a decisive victory in what U.S. elites saw as a global class war. The change of priorities was introduced as a withdrawal of big-government projects and a return to the market, but in fact the change shifted government-directed research away from programs like NASA or alternative energy sources and toward military, information, and medical technologies.
Of course this doesn’t explain everything. Above all, it does not explain why, even in those areas that have become the focus of well-funded research projects, we have not seen anything like the kind of advances anticipated fifty years ago. If 95 percent of robotics research has been funded by the military, then where are the Klaatu-style killer robots shooting death rays from their eyes?
Obviously, there have been advances in military technology in recent decades. One of the reasons we all survived the Cold War is that while nuclear bombs might have worked as advertised, their delivery systems did not; intercontinental ballistic missiles weren’t capable of striking cities, let alone specific targets inside cities, and this fact meant there was little point in launching a nuclear first strike unless you intended to destroy the world.
Contemporary cruise missiles are accurate by comparison. Still, precision weapons never do seem capable of assassinating specific individuals (Saddam, Osama, Qaddafi), even when hundreds are dropped. And ray guns have not materialized—surely not for lack of trying. We can assume the Pentagon has spent billions on death ray research, but the closest they’ve come so far are lasers that might, if aimed correctly, blind an enemy gunner looking directly at the beam. Aside from being unsporting, this is pathetic: lasers are a fifties technology. Phasers that can be set to stun do not appear to be on the drawing boards; and when it comes to infantry combat, the preferred weapon almost everywhere remains the AK-47, a Soviet design named for the year it was introduced: 1947.
The Internet is a remarkable innovation, but all we are talking about is a super-fast and globally accessible combination of library, post office, and mail-order catalogue. Had the Internet been described to a science fiction aficionado in the fifties and sixties and touted as the most dramatic technological achievement since his time, his reaction would have been disappointment. Fifty years and this is the best our scientists managed to come up with? We expected computers that would think!
Overall, levels of research funding have increased dramatically since the seventies. Admittedly, the proportion of that funding that comes from the corporate sector has increased most dramatically, to the point that private enterprise is now funding twice as much research as the government, but the increase is so large that the total amount of government research funding, in real-dollar terms, is much higher than it was in the sixties. “Basic,” “curiosity-driven,” or “blue skies” research—the kind that is not driven by the prospect of any immediate practical application, and that is most likely to lead to unexpected breakthroughs—occupies an ever smaller proportion of the total, though so much money is being thrown around nowadays that overall levels of basic research funding have increased.
Yet most observers agree that the results have been paltry. Certainly we no longer see anything like the continual stream of conceptual revolutions—genetic inheritance, relativity, psychoanalysis, quantum mechanics—that people had grown used to, and even expected, a hundred years before. Why?
Part of the answer has to do with the concentration of resources on a handful of gigantic projects: “big science,” as it has come to be called. The Human Genome Project is often held out as an example. After spending almost three billion dollars and employing thousands of scientists and staff in five different countries, it has mainly served to establish that there isn’t very much to be learned from sequencing genes that’s of much use to anyone else. Even more, the hype and political investment surrounding such projects demonstrate the degree to which even basic research now seems to be driven by political, administrative, and marketing imperatives that make it unlikely anything revolutionary will happen.
Here, our fascination with the mythic origins of Silicon Valley and the Internet has blinded us to what’s really going on. It has allowed us to imagine that research and development is now driven, primarily, by small teams of plucky entrepreneurs, or the sort of decentralized cooperation that creates open-source software. This is not so, even though such research teams are most likely to produce results. Research and development is still driven by giant bureaucratic projects.
What has changed is the bureaucratic culture. The increasing interpenetration of government, university, and private firms has led everyone to adopt the language, sensibilities, and organizational forms that originated in the corporate world. Although this might have helped in creating marketable products, since that is what corporate bureaucracies are designed to do, in terms of fostering original research, the results have been catastrophic.
My own knowledge comes from universities, both in the United States and Britain. In both countries, the last thirty years have seen a veritable explosion of the proportion of working hours spent on administrative tasks at the expense of pretty much everything else. In my own university, for instance, we have more administrators than faculty members, and the faculty members, too, are expected to spend at least as much time on administration as on teaching and research combined. The same is true, more or less, at universities worldwide.
The growth of administrative work has directly resulted from introducing corporate management techniques. Invariably, these are justified as ways of increasing efficiency and introducing competition at every level. What they end up meaning in practice is that everyone winds up spending most of their time trying to sell things: grant proposals; book proposals; assessments of students’ jobs and grant applications; assessments of our colleagues; prospectuses for new interdisciplinary majors; institutes; conference workshops; universities themselves (which have now become brands to be marketed to prospective students or contributors); and so on.
As marketing overwhelms university life, it generates documents about fostering imagination and creativity that might just as well have been designed to strangle imagination and creativity in the cradle. No major new works of social theory have emerged in the United States in the last thirty years. We have been reduced to the equivalent of medieval scholastics, writing endless annotations of French theory from the seventies, despite the guilty awareness that if new incarnations of Gilles Deleuze, Michel Foucault, or Pierre Bourdieu were to appear in the academy today, we would deny them tenure.
There was a time when academia was society’s refuge for the eccentric, brilliant, and impractical. No longer. It is now the domain of professional self-marketers. As a result, in one of the most bizarre fits of social self-destructiveness in history, we seem to have decided we have no place for our eccentric, brilliant, and impractical citizens. Most languish in their mothers’ basements, at best making the occasional, acute intervention on the Internet.
If all this is true in the social sciences, where research is still carried out with minimal overhead largely by individuals, one can imagine how much worse it is for astrophysicists. And, indeed, one astrophysicist, Jonathan Katz, has recently warned students pondering a career in the sciences. Even if you do emerge from the usual decade-long period languishing as someone else’s flunky, he says, you can expect your best ideas to be stymied at every point:
You will spend your time writing proposals rather than doing research. Worse, because your proposals are judged by your competitors, you cannot follow your curiosity, but must spend your effort and talents on anticipating and deflecting criticism rather than on solving the important scientific problems. . . . It is proverbial that original ideas are the kiss of death for a proposal, because they have not yet been proved to work.
That pretty much answers the question of why we don’t have teleportation devices or antigravity shoes. Common sense suggests that if you want to maximize scientific creativity, you find some bright people, give them the resources they need to pursue whatever idea comes into their heads, and then leave them alone. Most will turn up nothing, but one or two may well discover something. But if you want to minimize the possibility of unexpected breakthroughs, tell those same people they will receive no resources at all unless they spend the bulk of their time competing against each other to convince you they know in advance what they are going to discover.
In the natural sciences, to the tyranny of managerialism we can add the privatization of research results. As the British economist David Harvie has reminded us, “open source” research is not new. Scholarly research has always been open source, in the sense that scholars share materials and results. There is competition, certainly, but it is “convivial.” This is no longer true of scientists working in the corporate sector, where findings are jealously guarded, but the spread of the corporate ethos within the academy and research institutes themselves has caused even publicly funded scholars to treat their findings as personal property. Academic publishers ensure that findings that are published are increasingly difficult to access, further enclosing the intellectual commons. As a result, convivial, open-source competition turns into something much more like classic market competition.
There are many forms of privatization, up to and including the simple buying up and suppression of inconvenient discoveries by large corporations fearful of their economic effects. (We cannot know how many synthetic fuel formulae have been bought up and placed in the vaults of oil companies, but it’s hard to imagine nothing like this happens.) More subtle is the way the managerial ethos discourages everything adventurous or quirky, especially if there is no prospect of immediate results. Oddly, the Internet can be part of the problem here. As Neal Stephenson put it:
Most people who work in corporations or academia have witnessed something like the following: A number of engineers are sitting together in a room, bouncing ideas off each other. Out of the discussion emerges a new concept that seems promising. Then some laptop-wielding person in the corner, having performed a quick Google search, announces that this “new” idea is, in fact, an old one; it—or at least something vaguely similar—has already been tried. Either it failed, or it succeeded. If it failed, then no manager who wants to keep his or her job will approve spending money trying to revive it. If it succeeded, then it’s patented and entry to the market is presumed to be unattainable, since the first people who thought of it will have “first-mover advantage” and will have created “barriers to entry.” The number of seemingly promising ideas that have been crushed in this way must number in the millions.
And so a timid, bureaucratic spirit suffuses every aspect of cultural life. It comes festooned in a language of creativity, initiative, and entrepreneurialism. But the language is meaningless. Those thinkers most likely to make a conceptual breakthrough are the least likely to receive funding, and, if breakthroughs occur, they are not likely to find anyone willing to follow up on their most daring implications.
Giovanni Arrighi has noted that after the South Sea Bubble, British capitalism largely abandoned the corporate form. By the time of the Industrial Revolution, Britain had instead come to rely on a combination of high finance and small family firms—a pattern that held throughout the next century, the period of maximum scientific and technological innovation. (Britain at that time was also notorious for being just as generous to its oddballs and eccentrics as contemporary America is intolerant. A common expedient was to allow them to become rural vicars, who, predictably, became one of the main sources for amateur scientific discoveries.)
Contemporary, bureaucratic corporate capitalism was a creation not of Britain, but of the United States and Germany, the two rival powers that spent the first half of the twentieth century fighting two bloody wars over who would replace Britain as a dominant world power—wars that culminated, appropriately enough, in government-sponsored scientific programs to see who would be the first to discover the atom bomb. It is significant, then, that our current technological stagnation seems to have begun after 1945, when the United States replaced Britain as organizer of the world economy.
Americans do not like to think of themselves as a nation of bureaucrats—quite the opposite—but the moment we stop imagining bureaucracy as a phenomenon limited to government offices, it becomes obvious that this is precisely what we have become. The final victory over the Soviet Union did not lead to the domination of the market, but, in fact, cemented the dominance of conservative managerial elites, corporate bureaucrats who use the pretext of short-term, competitive, bottom-line thinking to squelch anything likely to have revolutionary implications of any kind.
If we do not notice that we live in a bureaucratic society, that is because bureaucratic norms and practices have become so all-pervasive that we cannot see them, or, worse, cannot imagine doing things any other way.
Computers have played a crucial role in this narrowing of our social imaginations. Just as the invention of new forms of industrial automation in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries had the paradoxical effect of turning more and more of the world’s population into full-time industrial workers, so has all the software designed to save us from administrative responsibilities turned us into part- or full-time administrators. In the same way that university professors seem to feel it is inevitable they will spend more of their time managing grants, so affluent housewives simply accept that they will spend weeks every year filling out forty-page online forms to get their children into grade schools. We all spend increasing amounts of time punching passwords into our phones to manage bank and credit accounts and learning how to perform jobs once performed by travel agents, brokers, and accountants.
Someone once figured out that the average American will spend a cumulative six months of life waiting for traffic lights to change. I don’t know if similar figures are available for how long it takes to fill out forms, but it must be at least as long. No population in the history of the world has spent nearly so much time engaged in paperwork.
In this final, stultifying stage of capitalism, we are moving from poetic technologies to bureaucratic technologies. By poetic technologies I refer to the use of rational and technical means to bring wild fantasies to reality. Poetic technologies, so understood, are as old as civilization. Lewis Mumford noted that the first complex machines were made of people. Egyptian pharaohs were able to build the pyramids only because of their mastery of administrative procedures, which allowed them to develop production-line techniques, dividing up complex tasks into dozens of simple operations and assigning each to one team of workmen—even though they lacked mechanical technology more complex than the inclined plane and lever. Administrative oversight turned armies of peasant farmers into the cogs of a vast machine. Much later, after cogs had been invented, the design of complex machinery elaborated principles originally developed to organize people.
Yet we have seen those machines—whether their moving parts are arms and torsos or pistons, wheels, and springs—being put to work to realize impossible fantasies: cathedrals, moon shots, transcontinental railways. Certainly, poetic technologies had something terrible about them; the poetry is likely to be as much of dark satanic mills as of grace or liberation. But the rational, administrative techniques were always in service to some fantastic end.
From this perspective, all those mad Soviet plans—even if never realized—marked the climax of poetic technologies. What we have now is the reverse. It’s not that vision, creativity, and mad fantasies are no longer encouraged, but that most remain free-floating; there’s no longer even the pretense that they could ever take form or flesh. The greatest and most powerful nation that has ever existed has spent the last decades telling its citizens they can no longer contemplate fantastic collective enterprises, even if—as the environmental crisis demands— the fate of the earth depends on it.
What are the political implications of all this? First of all, we need to rethink some of our most basic assumptions about the nature of capitalism. One is that capitalism is identical with the market, and that both therefore are inimical to bureaucracy, which is supposed to be a creature of the state.
The second assumption is that capitalism is in its nature technologically progressive. It would seem that Marx and Engels, in their giddy enthusiasm for the industrial revolutions of their day, were wrong about this. Or, to be more precise: they were right to insist that the mechanization of industrial production would destroy capitalism; they were wrong to predict that market competition would compel factory owners to mechanize anyway. If it didn’t happen, that is because market competition is not, in fact, as essential to the nature of capitalism as they had assumed. If nothing else, the current form of capitalism, where much of the competition seems to take the form of internal marketing within the bureaucratic structures of large semi-monopolistic enterprises, would come as a complete surprise to them.
Defenders of capitalism make three broad historical claims: first, that it has fostered rapid scientific and technological growth; second, that however much it may throw enormous wealth to a small minority, it does so in such a way as to increase overall prosperity; third, that in doing so, it creates a more secure and democratic world for everyone. It is clear that capitalism is not doing any of these things any longer. In fact, many of its defenders are retreating from claiming that it is a good system and instead falling back on the claim that it is the only possible system—or, at least, the only possible system for a complex, technologically sophisticated society such as our own.
But how could anyone argue that current economic arrangements are also the only ones that will ever be viable under any possible future technological society? The argument is absurd. How could anyone know?
Granted, there are people who take that position—on both ends of the political spectrum. As an anthropologist and anarchist, I encounter anticivilizational types who insist not only that current industrial technology leads only to capitalist-style oppression, but that this must necessarily be true of any future technology as well, and therefore that human liberation can be achieved only by returning to the Stone Age. Most of us are not technological determinists.
But claims for the inevitability of capitalism have to be based on a kind of technological determinism. And for that very reason, if the aim of neoliberal capitalism is to create a world in which no one believes any other economic system could work, then it needs to suppress not just any idea of an inevitable redemptive future, but any radically different technological future. Yet there’s a contradiction. Defenders of capitalism cannot mean to convince us that technological change has ended—since that would mean capitalism is not progressive. No, they mean to convince us that technological progress is indeed continuing, that we do live in a world of wonders, but that those wonders take the form of modest improvements (the latest iPhone!), rumors of inventions about to happen (“I hear they are going to have flying cars pretty soon”), complex ways of juggling information and imagery, and still more complex platforms for filling out of forms.
I do not mean to suggest that neoliberal capitalism—or any other system—can be successful in this regard. First, there’s the problem of trying to convince the world you are leading the way in technological progress when you are holding it back. The United States, with its decaying infrastructure, paralysis in the face of global warming, and symbolically devastating abandonment of its manned space program just as China accelerates its own, is doing a particularly bad public relations job. Second, the pace of change can’t be held back forever. Breakthroughs will happen; inconvenient discoveries cannot be permanently suppressed. Other, less bureaucratized parts of the world—or at least, parts of the world with bureaucracies that are not so hostile to creative thinking—will slowly but inevitably attain the resources required to pick up where the United States and its allies have left off. The Internet does provide opportunities for collaboration and dissemination that may help break us through the wall as well. Where will the breakthrough come? We can’t know. Maybe 3D printing will do what the robot factories were supposed to. Or maybe it will be something else. But it will happen.
About one conclusion we can feel especially confident: it will not happen within the framework of contemporary corporate capitalism—or any form of capitalism. To begin setting up domes on Mars, let alone to develop the means to figure out if there are alien civilizations to contact, we’re going to have to figure out a different economic system. Must the new system take the form of some massive new bureaucracy? Why do we assume it must? Only by breaking up existing bureaucratic structures can we begin. And if we’re going to invent robots that will do our laundry and tidy up the kitchen, then we’re going to have to make sure that whatever replaces capitalism is based on a far more egalitarian distribution of wealth and power—one that no longer contains either the super-rich or the desperately poor willing to do their housework. Only then will technology begin to be marshaled toward human needs. And this is the best reason to break free of the dead hand of the hedge fund managers and the CEOs—to free our fantasies from the screens in which such men have imprisoned them, to let our imaginations once again become a material force in human history.
For the list of top articles see Recommended Links section
Feb 14, 2021 | www.theepochtimes.com
Fox News ' Tucker Carlson said on the Thursday night episode of his program that his show has been targeted for cancellation.
Carlson said that "in the last several weeks, and particularly in the last 24 hours, the call to take this show off the air by groups funded -- for real -- by the Ford Foundation, or by George Soros, by Michael Bloomberg, by Jeff Bezos, has become deafening, going after our advertisers, going after the companies that carry our signal into your home."
What's more, he added, there has been a "cowardice and complicity" on behalf of the "entire media class in all of this," suggesting that eventually, reporters at legacy news outlets will be targeted as well.
Writing for Fox News' website, Carlson added that it may be part of a larger campaign to silence Fox News and other media, noting that some legacy news outlets have dedicated resources calling for the channel to be taken down. One columnist for The New York Times, he added, "has written three separate columns demanding that someone yank this news channel off the air immediately" and on Wednesday, "suggested that 'Tucker Carlson Tonight' was somehow guilty of terrorism and violence, something that we've opposed consistently for four years."
"Fox is the last big organization in the American news media that differs in even the smallest ways from the other big news organizations. At this point, everyone else in the media is standing in crisp formation, in their starched matching uniforms and their little caps, patiently awaiting orders from the billionaire class. And then there's Fox News off by itself, occasionally saying things that are slightly different from everyone else," Carlson wrote .
He added: "These are craven servants of the Democratic Party. They are feline, not canine. All of their aggression is passive aggression."
Jan 26, 2021 | www.moonofalabama.org
uncle tungsten , Jan 26 2021 1:11 utc | 172c1ue #118I actually talked about this with Kuppy last week.
He considers HFT a problem but not crippling; he says they cost him $10K to $25K a day but apparently this isn't enough to deter his hedge fund activities. He said that up to 70% of trading volume activity in any stock is HFT (!).
As for scam: well - the value of the front running exists only so long as the herd is in the market. Every single market crash - whether bitcoin or the stock market or whatever - sees the vast majority of players exit (or bankrupt). At that point, the trading volumes and numbers of people participating plummet dramatically.
How valuable do you think RH's model is then?
Sounds to me that HFT is a scam in itself. Am I to believe that algorithms trading against each other repetitively at high speed is anything other than machine driven gambling on one algorithm's interpretation of the behaviour of another algorithm, mostly outside of the human buy and sell in the market place. Are the humans just strapped on for the ride through a cabal of trading companies?
psychohistorian , Jan 26 2021 1:29 utc | 173@ uncle t # 168 who wroteuncle tungsten , Jan 26 2021 1:32 utc | 174
I was looking back at some earlier reports to gain an insight into the means by which the USA gave the game away and the means that might restore its place in the economic world. It has allowed itself to be completely captive to global private finance AND ownership of the keys to its salvation. If it does not nationalize its key industries then it can rest assured of its doom.
I continue to posit that the key industry that needs to be "nationalized/made totally sovereign" is finance. If humanity can follow China's lead, the motivations in the other industries will revert to doing what is right, rather than what is profitable.
In regards to your HFT comment in # 172, you have calling HFT a scam correct. It is programmed/manufactured theft under the guise of AI.
Thanks for your comments.arby #110When guys like Michael Saylor put a half a billion into bitcoin they have done their homework. Seems to me a scam is an operation containing a lot of lies. I don't see how bitcoin falls into that category.
As far as a Ponzi scheme I also do not see the connection. It is nothing like a Ponzi. There are no promises of big returns or large dividends.
When people follow 'guys like Michael Saylor [and see him] put a half a billion into bitcoin they [think] have done their homework [and follow like fish chasing a lure] THEN they have been sucked into a ponzi scheme where the lure is a fast buck if they follow the (smart?) leader. Then the smart leader progressively sells out at a sweet peak and the chumps watch it dip for a month or two. Unless of course there are lots of paid journalists and bloggers and facebook praise singers pumping the lure of the endless profit of bitcoin.
Sounds like rumours of gold in them thar hills.
There are a large number of lies (or exaggeration?) in bitcoin and all spun within a sheath of mystery and complexity and even 'mining' to smear some credible lipstick on the scheme.
There is a sucker born every minute and they invest in BS and love a veneer of mystique and bitcoin falls squarely into the category of lies and scams and fancy imaginings and the lure that suckers are forever chasing. Yes, people buy and sell and some make a profit - same as any ponzi scheme.
While the BS is pumped the ponzi is inflated.
Majority of One , says: January 22, 2021 at 7:12 pm GMT • 4.7 hours ago
Jan 22, 2021 | www.unz.com
By 8 January 2021, Mitch McConnell had determined he would not permit the Senate to try Trump until 19 January 2021 or later. He ruled that the Senate could not convene for special session unless all 100 Senators formally agreed; he maintained that ruling consistently, through 19 January 2021. By 10 January 2021, House majority Whip James Clyburn suggested the House may not deliver articles of impeachment to the Senate until after Biden has been in Office 100 days.
Not until today, 20 January 2021, did Pelosi deliver articles of impeachment to the Senate. The same day, McConnell said: (a) the Senate will receive the House managers at noon ET Thursday, 21 January, when the managers will present and exhibit the articles; (b) at 2:00 PM 21 January, Chief Justice John Roberts will be escorted into the Senate chamber and swear in all senators; (c) the impeachment articles' trial will begin Tuesday, 26 January.
Until 20 or 21 January, the Senate majority would remain Republican; and a GOP-majority Senate would not only acquit Trump but also impeach, strongly, the articles of impeachment. So, why did Mitch McConnell block early Senate trial? Two possible intersecting reasons:has said Trump fed the "mob" lies to provoke the mob to use violence to prevent Congress's certification of Biden's election.] (b) If trial occurs (as it will) when the Democrats control the Senate, a conviction might seem a Democrat-framed lynching -- not the GOP's traitorous assassination of Trump's "populism" and his political career.
I do not suggest such reasons are wise, logical, or even rational, but possibly real. McConnell is a crafty, dissembling, unscrupulous pseudo-aristocrat, but no Socrates or Aristotle.
"Liberal" and "moderate" Democrats, never-Trump Republicans,"The Squad, " the "Deep State" -- the nation's whole jumble of psychopathic and otherwise-psychically-ill "Elite," "woke," anti-"White"/anti-male/anti-meritocracy/sexually-deviant members -- all share one mantra : Trump and populism are evil, inimical to "Democracy" and the "culture," "morality," and "public interests" of the U.S. Populism must be extinguished. Never again may Trump "hold and enjoy any Office or honor, Trust or Profit under the United States" [U.S. Constitution Article I § 3 clause 7].
Why ought anyone care?
I voted twice for Trump, the second time (2020) merely because he was the lesser evil. In 2016, Trump promised more than a few moves that would have bettered the nation, e.g. ,
Trump meant and honored some promises -- at least partly. But others -- (a), (b), (f), (h), (i), and (k) -- were bad jokes. His Israel policy was evil. He railed against growing impairment of free speech. But his concern was mostly his own freedom of expression; and he failed to do anything substantial toward restoring the general public's freedom of speech. He continued, and worsened, Obama's persecution of Julian Assange and Bradley ["Chelsea"] Manning. Edward Snowden remains exiled. Trump has pardoned or commuted sentence of tens of nefarious criminals, but not Assange, Manning, or Snowden.
Kennedy, Johnson, Nixon, Carter, Reagan, Clinton, George W Bush, and Obama supported the illegal "state" called Israel. But Trump lifted Israel-support, and, concomitantly, anti-Iran policy to insane levels. Trump's Israel-related domestic policy included design of blocking or impeding first-amendment-protected speech and assembly that opposes Israel's genocidal persecution of Palestinians. Trump rendered formal equation of anti-Zionism and anti-Semitism and sought to outlaw the Boycott, Divest, and Sanction movement.
So, why ought we care whether, after Trump is not President, the Senate tries the articles of impeachment of Trump and rules that Trump shall not "hold and enjoy any Office or honor, Trust or Profit under the United States"? Why ought we care even whether simply the Senate tries the articles of impeachment but acquits Trump?
Trump's 2016 election suggested a true populist might become President -- not a closet "Elite," but one who would resist the Elites and the Deep State, not surround himself with snakes of the swamp. If the Senate tries Trump and rules that Trump shall not "hold and enjoy any Office or honor, Trust or Profit under the United States" because Trump and his supporters exercised their First Amendment freedom of speaking and assembling to support populism and protest a corrupt election, speech and assembly freedoms will cease and near-certainly no capable, electable populist will run for the Presidency.
But that consideration is subsumed in another, greater, more vital, fundamental concern. We have a federal Constitution. Every federal legislator and judge promises, by oath, not to act contrary to that Constitution. Every federal judge must promise this: "I solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will administer justice without respect to persons, and do equal right to the poor and to the rich, and that I will faithfully and impartially discharge and perform all the duties incumbent upon me under the Constitution and laws of the United States."
... ... ...
anonymous  Disclaimer , says: January 21, 2021 at 3:44 pm GMT • 1.3 days agoJust another serf , says: January 22, 2021 at 5:40 am GMT • 18.2 hours ago
...You live in a totalitarian state with arbitrary power.
Your government has three branches: CIA, CIA, and CIA. They infest every other corner of your government with spies. Until you can accept this you will be an irrelevant muppet writing bullshit.Dr. X , says: January 22, 2021 at 5:57 am GMT • 18.0 hours ago
Trump pardoned the following:
... ... ...
4. Every jew ever involved in health care fraud over the past 100 years
If you might be a Trump supporter, just stop. Trump was an incompetent fraud. And Biden (well his handlers really), will be very competent and will soon make you feel the sting of systemic punishment.
Everyone can claim some African ancestry. Suggest you get familiar with the process real quickstevennonemaker88 , says: January 22, 2021 at 5:58 am GMT • 17.9 hours ago
Back in 1987, as a young political science major, my constitutional law professor made us attend a lecture by a visiting scholar on the 200th anniversary of the Constitutional Convention. I cannot remember who the lecturer was, but I do recall one phrase he used that has stuck in my mind ever since: the Constitution only works if we have a "constitutional frame of mind." In other words, the Constitution reflected the culture and the attitudes of its authors. Today, elites in both parties could give a damn about the Constitution. They simply ignore the Constitution when it suits them -- or, conversely, use it as a club to bludgeon their enemies when it suits them.
Today we are reduced to parsing the language of the Constitution because nobody is really committed to the upholding the culture and the attitudes that informed it when it was written. Therefore it has become meaningless.Thomasina , says: January 22, 2021 at 7:22 am GMT • 16.5 hours ago
The president must dance to the tune of the bankers and assorted oligarchs who actually control the US. They enjoy confusing the common people with changing rhetoric and theater, but at the end of the day, the president is little more than a figurehead, and the policies remain largely the same. Many do not realize that the Obama administration deported some 2,750,000 illegals.. Under Trump it was only 935,000. Foreign wars? Police brutality? the rich getting richer? Prison industrial complex? decimation of the middle class? endless currency debasement? these things are consistent regardless, because they represent the interests of the actual rulers. The red candidate throws a bone to the "conservatives", the blue candidate throws a bone to the socialists, but the policy makers continue from one administration to the next. The last president who tried to stand up to the powers that be was JFK . and look what they did to him.Miro23 , says: January 22, 2021 at 11:27 am GMT • 12.5 hours ago
Excellent article. Very well done.
Tucker Carlson said Monday or Tuesday night on his show that McConnell warned Trump not to pardon Assange, and he held the impeachment over Trump's head.
Swampington has gone rogue. I have a feeling that during much of Trump's presidency the threat of impeachment loomed large, and maybe worse.
Look at Sessions, recusing himself and cowering in the corner. Barr comes in and does diddly squat. The Durham investigation was a very long joke.
Two years of the Mueller Commission (when everybody in the know knew it was a pack of lies), spying, leaking, abuse of the FISA Court, Kavanaugh, impeachment over Ukraine, Covid, Antifa, BLM, stolen election ..never-ending chaos.
These corrupt clowns will do whatever the hell they please. They are the law now. If they do end up following the law, it will only be because the destruction they've caused already will be deemed to be enough.
Many of them should be behind bars.Avery , says: January 22, 2021 at 2:23 pm GMT • 9.5 hours ago
With the federal judiciary's corrupt or cowardly treatment of legitimate election-result challenges, the federal judiciary has shown it has abnegated its constitutional duty and will incline to commit impeachable offenses to avoid resisting the Elites' and the Deep State's subjugation of the People. The Supreme Court has shown that five or more pseudo-aristocrat judges (two Democrats, three or more Republicans) align with the Elites and the Deep State. Dr. Paul Craig Roberts is correct. The People are suffering a revolution wrought by the "Establishment" (of the Elites and the Deep State).
I would say that they are more cowardly than corrupt.
They know that if they supported Trump's legitimate (good evidence) questioning of the election result, they would personally be in big trouble, so the Supreme Court is really not a Supreme Court at all – it's a piece of establishment window dressing – same as the rest of the hollowed out US Democratic institutions.
Real power in the US lies with the ZioGlob deep state and their MSM, the military (whichever way they turn), and the 72 million US gun owners (whatever they decide to do). There's also the aspect of real military power outside the US (Russia and China) that could be brought to bear, and would be potentially decisive. Accepted that some of these are TEOTWAWKI (The End Of The World As We Know It) scenarios but that seems to be how it is. Genuine Democracy isn't coming back to the US any time soon.@Beavertales at, do you really think Trump will discuss anything that went on in private? He is not the type to write a memoir.Dr. Charles Fhandrich , says: January 22, 2021 at 3:43 pm GMT • 8.2 hours ago
And some of the most bizarre decisions he made while POTUS were as a result of "advice" from his favourite daughter Ivanka and her repellant husband. Ann Coulter has an article where she lists the boneheaded decisions Trump made on "advice" from the two incompetent rich-kids..
This short video is very indicative of the stupidity of Ivanka: she is so stupid, that she can't even see the contempt these politicians have for her, and sticks around like a bad smell:
[French Government Posts Video Of Ivanka Trump At G-20 Summit | NBC News]
https://www.youtube.com/embed/7yUko1YCuxY?feature=oembedGetaclue , says: January 22, 2021 at 5:13 pm GMT • 6.7 hours ago
McConnell must, not maybe, must be the first person to go if the Republican Senate has any chance of surviving in a way that serves conservative interests. He has been positively of Zero support to president Trumps four years in office, only giving lip service to the interests of the issues the presidents supporters wanted addressed.. For four long years, McConnell was an expert at bringing every advance, or potential advance in conservative interests to naught. He however, had no problemo at all in taking advantage of President Trumps popularity with conservative voters, when his re-election was in doubt. Maybe his middle name should be Mitt.@anonymous ChiComs -- from whence In Laws $ all arises . McConnell shows the country is totally sold out to the ChiComs and in fact "governed" by them -- the rest of Congrassholes are about the same with various "spies" working them, having sex with them, and screwing us -- the USA is an occupied country via IsraHell and the Chinese Communists -- very, very bad days are ahead and most in the USA are moron mask wearers who actually believe the filthy pieces of cloth do something for their "health" contrary to all actual 41 Medical Studies to date which state the opposite -- truly Maskholing was an IQ test and the country failed to reach even the level of "Moron". Easy to steal an election when dealing with Maskhole Morons. Sad all are being pulled down by them .Getaclue , says: January 22, 2021 at 5:18 pm GMT • 6.6 hours ago@Aardvark you are charged by the Feds you will be railroaded, innocence means zero once you are charged and all the "Judge" cares about is getting you to plead guilty and move the case, you will be grossly overcharged to force this to happen and the Judge will glare at you and let you know he hates you if you go forward -- unless you are a Leftist Political hack or "activist" then you will be cut loose and probably never even charged ."justice" Roberts is the "model" -- his rulings in Obamacare etc. show he has no care for the actual "law" at all -- all the other Federal "judges" follow his example .The best thing that could happen to the USA is for the end of the Federal Courts, DOJ, and FBI -- all are Enemies Of The People -- get involved with them and find out.waw , says: January 22, 2021 at 5:46 pm GMT • 6.1 hours agoPeripatetic Itch , says: January 22, 2021 at 5:52 pm GMT • 6.0 hours ago
The Trumpster is a phony. He folded like a cheap suit, as he had done the bidding of the Khazar Satanists like a judas goat.@FoSquare The works of Plato and Aristotle have had much influence on the modern view of the "sophist" as a greedy instructor who uses rhetorical sleight-of-hand and ambiguities of language in order to deceive, or to support fallacious reasoning. In this view, the sophist is not concerned with truth and justice, but instead seeks power.
Societies that value truth but recognize the difficulties involved in discovering it also put value on freedom of expression. Those interested in power for its own sake, not so much. Unfortunately the power mongers always have the advantage of moral certainty. For them Alinsky and the Protocols are the only bibles.
@Anon olling 90% of the mass media of mindfuckery, mesmerization and mass megalomania and finally, the CIA financed and directed "Social Media", the greatest enemy of our First Amendment rights;;; those nefarious forces nearing absolute control over the federal regime in the Di$trict of Corruption have now fully succeeded in driving the last nail into the coffin of the Constitution AND the Bill of Rights, the enabling precondition for establishment of the federal system.Johnny Walker Read , says: January 22, 2021 at 7:35 pm GMT • 4.3 hours ago
Behind the scenes, roaring and howling with fits of schadenfreude laughter; the ultimate shotcallers, those OWNER$ of the Federal Reserve and most other major international banking institutions, are rubbing their greasy palm$ with total glee by having pulled off the greatest heist in world history.
Majority of One , says: January 22, 2021 at 8:09 pm GMT • 3.8 hours ago
Former President Trump is playing his final scene today, making ready to hand over the lead part of a government like reality show to the mentally infirm Joe Biden. Biden, with history of pathological lying and a trail of crimes and associations with other crimes had no actual chance of winning a real election, but real elections are now only part of America's history.
Trumped & Dumped: The Psychological Operation Scrambles to Survive | Jack Mullen
@Old and Grumpy wn individual of blackmail able importance -- was discovered in one of Ep$tein's logs).Spanky , says: January 22, 2021 at 8:51 pm GMT • 3.1 hours ago
Anyone notice how the Joint Chiefs of $taff for the U$ armed forces put out a notice to all military personnel that they must not participate in acts of sedition prior to the coronation of the Kamal's Foote/Biding administration.? Since the days of their attempted Operation Northwoods false flag scheme to attack Cuba, which was vetoed by JFK (among his other sins against the Deepe$t $tate); the proof was already in the pudding that the JC$ is dirty and our military is compromised by their chains of command from the top-down -- which is the way the enemies of We The People choose to employ their nefarious control system over one and all -- excepting, of course, the Elite$ themselves.
@Mefobills of savvy self-promoter and foil for Hillary. That would explain a lot, especially Hillary's (and the Democrats) absolute hatred of Trump and his supporters. That his shtick worked is testament to both his talent for self-promotion and our dislike of Hillary. Guess she miscalculatedgotmituns , says: January 22, 2021 at 9:10 pm GMT • 2.7 hours ago
In any case, it became obvious that either the fix was in, when he refused to back Flynn and appointed swamp creatures to fill his administrations' posts, or Trump was a fool. But that's not to say he wasn't useful in exposing the media and deep state's contempt, hatred and fear of us -- deplorables all -- by personifying it in their attacks on him.
The question that matters now, for populists, is how do we avoid the leadership trap?
For the most part, our entire legal profession has been taken over by an overeducated, inexperienced crowd of people who are not able to deal in "Letter" and "Spirit" of law. They're prisoners of the letter of the law because their only background is of the spoken and written word.
Jan 20, 2021 | www.moonofalabama.org
vk , Jan 20 2021 14:03 utc | 10The USA is now the proverbial Whale in a Swimming Pool: it is big, powerful and impressive - but can't hide its moves anymore and has little to none margin for any maneuver.
The American Center-wing is ossifying, or, in Cold Warrior terminology (Arthur Schlesinger Jr.), is losing its "vitality". It is entering a stage where it must "burn the village in order to save it".
mrm , Jan 20 2021 14:11 utc | 11... it seems the answer is that Germany plays the role in Europe that the US plays in the world and both are satisfied with that role even though neo-liberalism, austerity and war-mongering are leading us to inhumanity and disaster.Lucci , Jan 20 2021 14:18 utc | 13Like i said before elsewhere Biden would capitalize on what Trump has put forth and take the infamy and blame for instead of moving in the opposite directions of whatever Trump criticized for in foreign policy. That means be it trade war with China, renege on climate deals, strong arming NATO and EU countries, or giving everything Israel wants nothing stop Biden from maintaining what has been put in place.Norwegian , Jan 20 2021 14:43 utc | 15
At most they'll just make excuse on why they had to maintain the policies they themselves criticized Trump for without changing direction.Zanon , Jan 20 2021 14:44 utc | 16There will be absolutely no change in policy towards Israel
That is obviously correct: Joe Biden: "I Am A Zionist. You Don't Have To A Jew To Be A Zionist" https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Uo-UXZ-1upsExtreme leftist madness goes on: Washington Post : Blacklist Fox News 'as We Do with Foreign Terrorist Groups' https://www.breitbart.com/the-media/2021/01/18/wapo-pushes-to-bar-fox-news-as-we-do-with-foreign-terrorist-groups/Norwegian , Jan 20 2021 14:45 utc | 17vk , Jan 20 2021 14:50 utc | 18He said Joe Biden's strong conviction was that the Nord Stream 2 pipeline is a "bad idea" and that the administration would use "every persuasive tool" to convince partners, including Germany, to discard the project.That is pretty much a declaration of war against countries in Europe. Stay away,America's disarray is its own woes, not other countries' opportunity The Financial Times lives in a world where the USA doesn't have more than 2,000 operational nukes, doesn't control the financial system (SWIFT), doesn't issue the universal fiat currency (Dollar Standard), doesn't have a big fucking navy, doesn't enjoy absolute ideological hegemony etc. etc.pnyx , Jan 20 2021 15:07 utc | 19
Trump's 4-year effort to contain China was unwise, unrealistic: Global Times editorial Well, that's what happens when you hire a right-wing ideologue as your main advisor (Steve Bannon): you do policy based on a delirious utopia and get smacked by reality....Tronald's foreign policy has been a disaster, even if he has supposedly not sparked a new war. Let's not talk about all the secret operations, multiplied drone attacks, state terrorist assassinations, etc. And the new administration is now continuing this...bevin , Jan 20 2021 15:07 utc | 20"How exactly are they "ossifying"?" Jackrabbit@14Eighthman , Jan 20 2021 15:08 utc | 21
They've stopped thinking, become utterly predictable.
They just go through the motions. They know that they can't win-achieve their long held objectives-but they can't stop repeating themselves, including their past errors. They are not allowed to. The US ruling caste-servants of the ruling class- are only allowed to operate within very narrow boundaries. They aren't allowed to take radical measures when faced with new crises- they are confined within ever diminishing political circles. The duopoly has become an obvious One Party system. And its politics are those of the Gilded Age-150 years old and still going strong.
The only solution to America's problems is defeat so complete that it cannot be denied even by the least perceptive. Anyone with money to spare should be buying popcorn futures....Biden is an elderly figurehead. Trump's mistake was being openly bullying and vulgar instead of underhanded. Already, the EU ( as cowardly vassals ) are falling into line on Iran and Russia.Larry Paul Johnson , Jan 20 2021 15:11 utc | 22...Paul Craig Roberts is correct. There has not been a regime change, there has been a revolution and treating policies of this "president" as if he is more than a figurehead being run by oligarchs is foolish in the extreme.Jackrabbit , Jan 20 2021 15:39 utc | 24bevin @Jan20 15:07 #20dh , Jan 20 2021 16:04 utc | 25They've stopped thinking, become utterly predictable.
One could say this about the American people who have been herded into two camps so that the Center can rule. Here's an example: One of Biden's first executive actions is to include undocumented residents in the Census. This will please the Left immensely and outrage the Right. But the Census is conducted every 10 years and it was completed in 2020. So Biden's action is actually meaningless. How many people will actual notice this? Very few.@24 Some people in Central America have noticed.William Gruff , Jan 20 2021 16:16 utc | 26
https://www.cbc.ca/news/world/honduran-migrants-us-guatemala-crackdown-1.5877244It is funny/sad to see the Post Trump Stress Disorder victims are already rationalizing and making excuses for the war that the establishment drones they voted for will be starting, and those drones are not even sworn in to office yet. They know that they voted for war yet their plastic, Hollywood "identities" are so intertwined with their assumed self-evident moral superiority that they are compelled to defend the evil they are responsible for even before it is committed. For them, doing nothing crudely is far worse than murdering millions accompanied by lofty and emotive platitudes.AntiSpin , Jan 20 2021 16:49 utc | 27Joe Biden's Cabinet Is on Loan From Corporate America An interview with David Dayen 12/8/20 https://www.jacobinmag.com/2020/12/david-dayen-american-prospect-joe-biden-cabinetNorwegian , Jan 20 2021 16:55 utc | 28
Beware of the Hawk: What to Expect from the Biden Administration on Foreign Policy
Biden Administration Betrayals of Working Americans
By Leonard C. Goodman
Why They're Denying You Healthcare And Financial Support During A Pandemic
by Caitlin Johnstone
Biden Goes To Bat For BlackRock, Stays Vague On Direct Aid To Struggling Americans
Biden and the Democrats Could Change Everything. But They Won't Try
by Ted Rall | January 7, 2021
The Biden Democrats Already Show They Learned Little from Trump's Loss
by Richard Wolff | December 24, 2020
Biden's Foreign Policy History and What it Portends for his Presidency
By Jeremy Kuzmarov January 11, 2021
Biden's Transition Team is Filled With War Profiteers, Beltway Chickenhawks, and Corporate Consultants
by Kevin Gosztola 11/14/20
Biden's Pentagon Transition Team Members Funded by the Arms Industry
by Dave DeCamp – 11/11/2020
Biden's Victory Does Not Guarantee a Progressive Agenda. We Must Fight for It.
by Marjorie Cohn 11-23-20
Meet the Filthy Rich War Hawks That Make up Biden's New Foreign Policy Team
"I expect the prevailing direction of U.S. foreign policy over these last decades to continue: more lawless bombing and killing multiple countries under the cover of "limited engagement," – Biden Biographer Branko Marcetic
by Alan Macleod November 13th, 2020
More Humane Cages? Prospects for Immigration Justice Under Biden Appear Dim
by Adrienne Pine | November 18, 2020
Neera Tanden – Reduce US Deficits by Raiding the Economies of Countries We Have Destroyed:
Neera Tanden, Biden's Pick for Budget Office: Now Is Not the Time To 'Worry About Raising Deficits and Debt'
by Robby Soave
She once suggested that if Americans care about the deficit so much, maybe we should make Libya pay for it.
( Ariana Ruiz/ZUMAPRESS/Newscom )
Neera Tanden and Antony Blinken Personify the 'Moderate' Rot at the Top of the Democratic Party
by Norman Solomon 12/29/20
Obama & the Democrats Sending Mixed Messages about the Catfood Commission
By Carl Bloice 10-14-12
Progressives Made Trump's Defeat Possible -- Now It's Time to Challenge Biden and Other Corporate Democrats
by Norman Soloman 11/7/20
Someone Should Ask Ursula Burns If She Supports Child Labor in Africa
by Thomas Neuburger | 12/30/20
The Dark Past of Biden's Nominee for National Intelligence Director
by John Kiriakou 12/31/20
The REAL Joe Biden
"The Chinese Uyghur Dark Legend and Washington's Campaign to Counter Chinese Economic Rivalry"
by Stephen Gowans 10/25/20
Top 10 Reasons to Reject Blinken
by David Swanson
Who Is Michèle Flournoy, Biden's Rumored Pick for Pentagon Chief
by Thomas Neuberger 11/11/20
Why Biden Will Keep the U.S.-Imposed Cold War Rolling
by Vijay Prashad| 11/19/20
Why Progressives Should Care About Biden's Pick for Commerce Secretary
by Zena Wolf 1/7/21
Why Senators Must Reject Avril Haines for Intelligence
by Medea Benjamin | 12/30/20
Will the Senate Confirm Coup Plotter Victoria Nuland?
by Medea Benjamin 1/15/21
No, Joe, Don't Roll out the Red Carpet for Torture Enablers
by Medea Benjamin and Marcy Winograd 12/22/20
http://www.smirkingchimp.com/thread/medea-benjamin/94425/no-joe-don-t-roll-out-the-red-carpet-for-torture-enablers#comment'This Is What 80 Million Votes Looks Like': Biden Inauguration EMPTY (PICS)Down South , Jan 20 2021 17:05 utc | 29Zanon @ 16Paul , Jan 20 2021 17:06 utc | 30
I'm not surprised. You only have to watch this segment from Tucker Carlson to understand why. https://youtu.be/M0l7xH5zbIgTrump ripped the mask off US foreign policy and exposed it for what it is - ugly Zionism and outrageous Jewish supremacy. Trump did many foreign policy changes previous incumbents and their handlers wanted to do but were constrained by the optics and international opinion.lex talionis , Jan 20 2021 17:08 utc | 31
I agree the Biden administration will continue the same tired old foreign policy, only with the mask back on. Of course the media won't notice the similarities, but the public will. No matter how fervently the managers tinker with the edges it is events that drive changes and change people.Blue is the new red! All hail the Bidet administration! Dermocracy (депмократия) dies in the dark!juliania , Jan 20 2021 17:32 utc | 32I just listened to President Biden's speech. It was a good one, even a great one. Thinking about what Plato means by the 'noble lie' it was a noble speech, and there wasn't much of a lie about it.psychohistorian , Jan 20 2021 17:33 utc | 33
I just wish he were a younger man.b finished the posting withkarlof1 , Jan 20 2021 17:34 utc | 34
While Trump had continued the wars the U.S. waged when he came into office he did not start any new ones. Since Joe Biden first entered the Senate 47 years ago he has cheered on every war the U.S. has since waged. It would be astonishing to find four years from now that he did not start any new ones.
Prepare to be astonished. Biden isn't going to start any new wars for the same reason that Trump didn't......MAD
Humanity has been in the MAD phase of the civilization war we are in since the Obama era push back in Syria.
Biden's chest beating will not be as "impressive" as Trump's but the trajectory is the same.The new chief says to tighten the circle of wagons, but those accused of besieging the Outlaw US Empire's wagon train stopped attacking and moved on long ago. Meanwhile, supplying the wagon train continues to take resources away from dealing with very real domestic problems. The upshot is China will continue to pull away and increase its lead geoeconomically, and together with Russia will continue to solidify and strengthen the Eurasian Bloc. Very soon, the EU is going to be faced with a very stark choice--to join the Eurasian Bloc and thus stave-off economic atrophy or continue to allow its brand of Neoliberal Parasites to eat and risk rupture, perhaps not in 2021 but before 2030.Lucci , Jan 20 2021 17:38 utc | 35
The key is that the false narrative that was initiated in 1945 and bolstered in 1979 continues to be treated as gospel despite its path to certain ruin. I noted there were no questions asked about the international call for a Bretton Woods 2.0 that would end dollar hegemony and Petrodollar recycling, while removing the one source of coercion behind its illegal sanctions.
The only possible target of opportunity I see is Venezuela as the frack-patch is about to fold-up shop and fuel prices cause domestic inflation to soar -- Here in Oregon, gas prices have gone up 50cents/gal since the first of the year--25%. The oil being the obvious target now the the lower-48 has definitely peaked.@Jackrabit 24james , Jan 20 2021 17:40 utc | 36
|One could say this about the American people who have been herded into two camps so that the Center can rule.|
There's no center or centrist in USA there's only elite capitalist oligarchs who is neocons through and through at the core.@ 32 juliania... you are the eternal optimist! there is something admirable about that!.. however you have to contend with a lot of cynical people who think like it's business as well, as b's post notes..... you might not like to hear this, but nothing is going to change under biden... big wheels set in motion and biden is not interested in the least in changing any of it... neither was trump as some of his fanbots are coming to see too... political speeches are just so much b.s... juliania - as the saying goes, talk is cheap, it is actions that count.... watch peoples actions, not their talk... biden can talk a good line, but that has nothing to do with his actions... top of the day to you!dh , Jan 20 2021 17:42 utc | 37@34 Invading Venezuela and 'taking the oil' won't be easy though there is a possibility Colombia will help out. Which means the total disruption of South America. More economical to just buy the stuff.Per/Norway , Jan 20 2021 18:00 utc | 38"It is funny/sad to see the Post Trump Stress Disorder victims are already rationalizing and making excuses for the war that the establishment drones they voted for will be starting, and those drones are not even sworn in to office yet. They know that they voted for war yet their plastic, Hollywood "identities" are so intertwined with their assumed self-evident moral superiority that they are compelled to defend the evil they are responsible for even before it is committed. For them, doing nothing crudely is far worse than murdering millions accompanied by lofty and emotive platitudes."dh , Jan 20 2021 18:03 utc | 39
Posted by: William Gruff | Jan 20 2021 16:16 utc | 26
Tnx for expressing this in a much nicer and polite way then i would have written. And yes, yes it is sad/amusing to watch NPC`s turn into pretzels to explain away their cognitive dissonans ,utter foolishness and stupidity.@37 On the subject of gas prices perhaps it might be a bad time to cut off Canadian supply?
Jan 15, 2021 | www.unz.com
Kiza , says: January 15, 2021 at 7:51 am GMT • 10.2 hours agodfordoom , says: Website January 15, 2021 at 8:04 am GMT • 10.0 hours ago
Before the election I polled all my friends who would win. The majority of both left and right oriented said that it would be Trump. I said, yes Trump would win a fair election, but he will lose on who is counting. Multiple methods of attack on the election outcome have been prepared, all methods well planned, tried and perfected in the string of color revolutions around the World. Because those attacking Trump are the same as those who have been doing the "regime changes" in the vulnerable countries over the past 30 years. Trump never had a grain of chance against this mighty machinery. Corrupt local governors and blackmailed and co-opted all levels of judiciary, targeted lawlessness, threats and examples of violence and future civil war if the other side wins, censorship, eviction of election observers, night-time suitcases of ballots, one-sided main sewerage media.
All pure déjà vu – this is exactly how the color revolutions work – the art of winning elections. The US bombers arrive only if the "peaceful transition of power" (aka the stealing of election and post-election) fails. In the color revolution manual, there is also a chapter on prevention of resistance to the stolen election – thus the msm and congress screeching like castrated pigs against Trump's imaginary incitement of insurrection (pure psychological projection). I was always sure that Trump is too much of a cheap demagogue and hot air filled balloon to be able to initiate a real insurrection.
The playbook/manual is fully symmetrical – it always addresses both possible outcomes – if their side does not manage to steal the election then they incite an insurrection and oust the winner (the Viktor Yanukovych outcome).
... ... ...
In political terms, in the 2016 election a quasi-populist candidate slipped through. This will never happen again because state laws will be enacted with built-in mail voting and electronic voting machines. Competent or incompetent populists will never get through again. This will ensure that the choice will always be only between the approved, controllable candidates with plenty of skeletons in wardrobes and dirty laptops in their closets. It is funny how few people appear to understand that Hunter's laptop was not just a suppressed election decider then an important reason for Biden's suitability – the insurance of ensurance, the media ready Kompromat.
Finally, it is very important to keep in mind that none of what transpired would have been possible in a healthy country : election of Trump without enough Kompromat to have to invent the dumbest Putin's puppet meme and the consequent exposure of the manipulative Deep State, the sulfuric acid for the brain MSM and the high-techs fakers. These are all the Hegels' seeds of destruction in action.@anonymousdfordoom , says: Website January 15, 2021 at 8:07 am GMT • 10.0 hours ago
One thing to ask is why was this huge effort made to oust Trump?
Maybe it was hostility towards Trump's supporters rather than hostility towards Trump. Trump is a reliable pro-immigration ultra-Zionist rabidly pro-LGBT liberal. The views of a large proportion of Trump's supporters are diametrically opposed to Trump's own views, but his supporters aren't smart enough to figure that out.@anonDieter Kief , says: January 15, 2021 at 8:11 am GMT • 9.9 hours ago
Because Trump inflames white nationalism
Which is hilarious because whatever else Trump may be, he's no white nationalist. But again his supporters can't figure stuff like that out.@A123Cthulu Smith , says: January 15, 2021 at 8:11 am GMT • 9.9 hours ago
In extreme situations, it's more important to win than to play by the rules. – This is the moral reasoning **** of the fraudsters. The basic equation they applied is so simple that it hurts (and therefore: worked perfectly well – in all of the West): Trump = Hitler.
**** If I might go with Sigmund Freud here, I'd say: – Their rationalizations instead of "their moral reasoning".@anonKiza , says: January 15, 2021 at 8:14 am GMT • 9.9 hours ago
I prefer this model, and it's not being discussed: Someone was making BIG money off of those programs and policies leftover from Obama. Trade with China? Care to mention one BIG company who peddles Chinese wares? Maybe two or three of them, perhaps?
"Follow the money", is what Deep Throat told Woodward. If we do that with our darling Deep State? Just ask yourself, who stood to benefit from four years of Hillary, pray tell? There's your answer.@A123Commentator Mike , says: January 15, 2021 at 8:32 am GMT • 9.6 hours ago
The Deep State regime stole this election in exactly the same states where Trump successfully campaigned in 2016 to win against Clinton. In the Art of Winning Elections it did not take a genius to develop this solution – the lowest number of night-suitcases (filled with ballots) for the highest number of elector votes .SurfingUSA , says: January 15, 2021 at 8:48 am GMT • 9.3 hours ago
Thanks for a balanced assessment. In my mind the election was already unfair when you have the entire MSM and the Internet social media companies rooting for one candidate while attacking the other and banning/censoring the voices of his supporters under various pretexts. Both candidates and their supporters, should have been given equal exposure but I don't know how that could be achieved in practice.
Trump was severely hamstrung by the role played by the MSM and the social media. In a real democracy this state of affairs should not be allowed: where the rich and powerful who control the media have an unequal say and overwhelming influence compared to the ordinary voters.Sirius , says: January 15, 2021 at 8:54 am GMT • 9.2 hours ago
Now we have Ruby Freeman, heretofore only on video rolling out suitcases in Fulton County, now on AUDIO discussing her $100 an hour election heist gig and the "Secretary of State" is mentioned at 2:02 by her boss Ralph Jones:
https://thedonald.win/p/11S0bp78qW/georgia–ruby-caught-on-video-wi/c/fatmanscoop , says: January 15, 2021 at 9:06 am GMT • 9.0 hours ago
There is a small element of illogic in the numbers part of the argument, namely in using 2 different metrics to make that argument. (I agree with the corruption part of the argument covered by Glenn Greenwald. It's censorship in action).
As I've done before, I'll reiterate, I'm no fan of Biden or Trump. In fact I'm worried about the war cabinet Biden already seems to be assembling just as I still worry about the crazed maniac Pompeo for the next few days left in the current administration.
But here's the point and it is a very subtle one: to say it was a tight race and only 1 in 7,000 Americans had to change their vote is a bit misleading. In the absurd Electoral College, winner take all the state system (which is far more scandalous in my view), we take one state at a time. If we accept the vote count, Biden won over 7,000,000 more votes more than Trump, a margin of victory of 4.4%. Not very close.
Therefore, if it were a one person one vote nationwide system, 2.2% would have to change their minds, meaning 1 out of every 45 Americans.
But it's a state by state margin that we're after. Thus more to the point would be to take each individual state and its margin. So if we took Georgia as one example, the margin of Biden's lead was 11,779 votes out of 4,935,487 votes cast for Biden and Trump (we disregard all the third party votes in this argument). 5,890 voters would have to "change their minds". Out of the Biden/Trump overall vote, that's 1 out of 838 Georgian voters.
To apply a different system, overall US vote count, to one state, Georgia, is using which system you prefer to come up with an illusionary 1 out of 7000 Americans, not applying the same metric down the line. It's a separate state by state system, not a nationwide vote. You have to stay consistent to be accurate in this method of argumentation.
Very technical, yes. What about mail-in voting? What is the evidence that this is by definition rigged or manipulated? Mailed ballots have a paper trail like in-person ballots. Presumably someone could steal your ballot from your home and vote on your behalf, but this can be traced and found out. At least one state, Washington, doesn't even have in-person voting at all. Does that mean all of their votes are fraudulent?
What about voter suppression? Shouldn't that be factored in? That seems to happen a lot more often in red states than blue states. What about Trumps attempts to sabotage the US Postal System? Doesn't that bother anybody who supports him? What about his refusal to commit to the results prior to Election Day? (He did the same in 2016 by the way). This only added to his opponents concern about his dictatorial tendencies.
Finally, in all the arguments I've seen anywhere, I haven't seen anyone lay out which states use those ridiculous electronic voting machines which leave no paper trail. That should be the other real scandal and those should be immediately banned in every state. Get rid of those and the Electoral College and we might have a fair system.
Oh, and get rid of a system that is eternally dominated by 2 parties as well, whether through run off elections or even better, proportional representation. The latter that would be truly more democratic.@anonymoussarz , says: January 15, 2021 at 9:10 am GMT • 8.9 hours ago
why was this huge effort made to oust Trump? What did they want him to do that he wouldn't do? Was he an impediment to the increase of control over the average person? Did not want to start up another action against Syria? Would not attack Iran without having a coalition of NATO countries lined up? Was against total outsourcing to China? Not confrontational enough against Russia? Perhaps he gave the deplorables dangerous ideas about them having some rights. If that question could be answered then we'd know what is coming.
He humiliated the upper echelons of society so thoroughly via his 2016 campaign and victory.@anon Because Trump inflames white nationalism, which is anathema to the Jews.
There is evidence that Trump himself is a Jew, and a fanatic Zionist at that, so his self-serving incitement of white nationalism (whose causes he did little to implement, unlike his steady support for every imaginable Israeli cause, tbe more outrageous the better, short of war with the "usable" nukes he had had developed for the purpose, that Russia warned him away from) was especially galling to the top Jews such as the Rothschilds for whom Israel is nothing sentimental, just one more piece in their chess game for world power.
Hamilcar , says: January 15, 2021 at 9:15 am GMT • 8.8 hours agosulu , says: January 15, 2021 at 9:21 am GMT • 8.7 hours ago
Thank you Ron.
And thank you for this site which is a beacon of free speech and dissent against our vile, corrupt, incompetent ruling class.
In all the post election rancor little attention has been brought to how razor thin the margin actually was. And with you being a vociferous critic of Trumps boorish antics and insane foreign policy the candor on this issue is appreciated.
At a minimum the circumstantial evidence of vote counts being stopped in swing states along with gerrymandered rules was highly suspicious. To claim a mandate on such a close election while losing house seats is absurd but the Republicans bungling the Georgia Senate run off over $2K checks and a sycophantic MSM ensures they will.
And after abetting barbaric violence and anarchy for months the Democrats will now use trespassing in their "Sacred Temple" to unleash a crackdown by the national security state and unprecedented censorship and social-credit run by woke-corporate oligarchs.
Interestingly (And as many predicted) it appears they will reopen the economy and declare "victory" over Covid shortly after Bidens inauguration. Clearly the bizarre excesses of the lockdowns and dynamiting of the economy were calculated to undermine Trump and consolidate wealth and power from the start.
The question is what exactly this "new normal" will be and how far they're willing to go in order to purge the Trumpists and populist right. It will be easy to garner support for the latter but if the daily disruptions and financial shocks continue the system will collapse.
A new, large scale war would be a useful distraction but it's hard to imagine the U.S sustaining one in its current state much less against capable adversaries like China and Russia.
Then again, arrogant, idiotic, catastrophic policy blunders are the defining feature of this ruling class for the last 30 years so I wouldn't put it past them given the madness we've seen already.thotmonger , says: January 15, 2021 at 9:51 am GMT • 8.2 hours ago
In effect, America's media and tech giants formed a united front to steal the election and somehow drag the crippled Biden/Harris ticket across the finish line.
And what ethnic group owns America's media?@ruralguySirius , says: January 15, 2021 at 10:30 am GMT • 7.6 hours ago
adjustment via a plastic bag put over their heads. If they were lucky.
There was no real contest. Because? A. Control of the mainstream media was so one sided. And that is where we are at now here in USA. Imagine, a standing President of the USA has been banned and censored by all the "American" mainstream media giants. Actually, you do not have to imagine. It just happened: Big Tech and MSM has openly torpedoed the First Amendment and US Constitution. So we know where they are coming from. It's also kind of disappointing how most of our "representatives" are dealing with this.@John GruskosContraviews , says: January 15, 2021 at 10:39 am GMT • 7.4 hours ago
The only cause other than himself on which Trump has been consistent is serving Israel. One of the only two major policies of Obama's that he didn't reverse was support of Israel, though he took it to yet another level. The other one was increasing military spendings. Obama never cut military spending. My money is on Biden never doing it either, and also that he will take support of Israel to yet another level. I hope I'm wrong.Anon  Disclaimer , says: January 15, 2021 at 10:44 am GMT • 7.4 hours ago
On the election night I was listening to two of our New Zealand reporters who were reporting the incoming results. I remember quite clearly after results had been coming in for a while they remarked: "well that's it another four years of the same". That were their exact words. That must have been before the postal votes came in, which suddenly changed the picture completely to Biden's advantage. Postal votes I believe were introduced for the first time in 2020 because of the Corona pandemic. It's believed that postal votes can be more easily tampered with. Postal votes are expected to remain during future elections I believe.noname27 , says: Website January 15, 2021 at 11:00 am GMT • 7.1 hours ago
We are to believe Biden won 507 counties, the least EVER, but won the most votes ever. Trump won 74 million votes, beating Obama's 69 million in 2008, the previous all-time high. Trump won over 2500 counties.
Clarice Feldman at the Americanthinker.com noted that many residences had multiple votes from the current occupants plus previous occupants (apartment complexes) in this election, because old voter rolls aren't purged in a timely manner. The same addy might have 3 previous residents voting, plus the same individual voters legitimately voting at their new addresses.
My advice for whites is this .we will probably be getting in new wars for neocons now, so you might wanna think twice before signing up for the military. You may find your twenties being used up in multiple deployments in foreign miserable places.noname27 , says: Website January 15, 2021 at 11:05 am GMT • 7.0 hours ago
A very interesting interview by Brian Ruhe with Dennis Fetcho: https://www.bitchute.com/embed/a9AtcoEyDaPh@shylockcracy
Only if the American people don't adopt the MAGA phenomenon and run with it as their own = The People's MAGA MOVEMENT – who needs Trumpstein?
Schuetze , says: January 15, 2021 at 11:16 am GMT • 6.8 hours ago@nsaonebornfree , says: Website January 15, 2021 at 11:32 am GMT • 6.6 hours ago
Strange that all these presidential elections are always neck and neck. Just because there are two parties does not mean that election after election the vote will boil down to one or two "swing states" and a few thousand votes. Statistically, it just doesn't make sense.
Of course the media loves these nail-biter elections because it drives up their viewership. Every election we get the same old farcical "debates", scandals and continual ridiculous sound bites. This is strong evidence, if not proof, that these elections are scripted from beginning to end, even up to and including the "march to the Capitol" and the ensuing "insurrection".@Ash Williamsannamaria , says: January 15, 2021 at 11:57 am GMT • 6.1 hours ago
"Ron put a "I'm a reasonable man" spin on this"
Exactly. "Spin". He also appears to be entirely ignorant of the fact that the constitution states that each states electors, and the procedure for choosing them, must be accomplished via the state[s] legislatures, and that in all 6[?] swing states that recorded early morning, miraculous turn-around votes from Trump to Biden, that that particular constitutional procedure had been entirely , and very conveniently, ignored:
U.S constitution. Article 2 section 1:[MORE]@RationalTom Welsh , says: January 15, 2021 at 12:08 pm GMT • 6.0 hours ago
The Lobby wants Syria by any means, up to a direct confrontation with the Russian Federation. The Jewish hatred for Iran is boundless (same for Russia – take note, Americans). Zionists care not about human lives.Tom Welsh , says: January 15, 2021 at 12:13 pm GMT • 5.9 hours ago
"I don't know or care anything about Dominion voting machines, whether they are controlled by Venezuelan Marxists, Chinese Communists, or Martians. But the most blatant election-theft was accomplished in absolutely plain sight".
Cui bono? Obviously the main group profiting from the fraudulent election was the Democratic Party and its supporters. So why drag in foreign governments? Most of them are all too well aware that it's very dangerous to attract the attention of the USA for good or bad. Like trying to save a drowning whale.
So their sensible strategy is to stand back at a safe distance and watch the monster perish in its own poisons, hoping it doesn't lash out and harm them in its dying struggles.@ContraviewsCortes , says: January 15, 2021 at 12:17 pm GMT • 5.8 hours ago
The convenient thing about postal votes is that they make it possible to wait until the opponent's votes are all in and counted – then send in just enough postal votes to tip the balance. It's rather like an auction in which one bidder gets only the one bid, and then a rival can offer $1 more.
Ridiculous if you want a fair election. But nobody who matters wants or expects anything of that kind. A proper political machine gets everything cut and dried well in advance.
Trump was unpredictable and, to a degree, uncontrollable. He had to go.@SchuetzeTimur The Lame , says: January 15, 2021 at 12:40 pm GMT • 5.4 hours ago
Well said. I'm sure that it's no coincidence that DJT has been involved with televised wrestling over the years. Every great contest requires a memorable "heel" to engage the spectators. In televised snooker in the UK, final matches often are over best of 35 frames. It's unusual for them not to go to the last ball of the final frame. Got to have a little drama.
Meanwhile, back at the ranch the rancher counts the silver dollars.atlantis_dweller , says: January 15, 2021 at 12:41 pm GMT • 5.4 hours ago
...If ego or narcissism can explain it, so be it. I'll go with insane or suffering from dementia. Any 'drain the swamp' or 'fix the system', MAGA or "build back better" argument would appeal only to retards. Re-visit Carroll Quigly's succinct description of political parties in the USA in Tragedy and Hope, pages 1247-1248 (hardcover) or Google same.
I'm beginning to believe that a different species is holding sway and we are the proverbial Eloi.@Commentator Mikeatlantis_dweller , says: January 15, 2021 at 12:49 pm GMT • 5.3 hours ago
The point is, it is the average intellect, moral and civic weight of the involved constituencies that allows or doesn't allow what shouldn't be allowed in a real democracy. You don't have actual democracy below a lower threshold of intellect and moral and civic worth of all the main involved parties.
We could in other words say: there will be as much real democracy as is desired by the average citizen, where to desire it is not to blandly say "I agree with democracy".@KizaGetaclue , says: January 15, 2021 at 1:31 pm GMT • 4.6 hours ago
It is funny how few people appear to understand that Hunter's laptop was not just a suppressed election decider then an important reason for Biden's suitability
Yes, few people understand that all regime-approved candidates are people able to be blackmailed for a precise reason, and not at all by chance. What about Hegel though?@obvious Globalist NWO creeps stole the election, they spent 4 years trying to overthrow the 2016 election by coups aided and abetted by the Globalist Mainslime Media, FBI etc. -- you missed all that of course? .Johnny Smoggins , says: January 15, 2021 at 1:46 pm GMT • 4.3 hours ago
They also PUBlICLY previewed, as they did the COVID Agenda, stealing the election a couple months before, gamed and planned it in various outcomes .Anyone who can't see what is up is either willfully ignorant, lying, or "stupid" as you say.
No decent person is in favor of the Agenda of Harris/Biden serving the NWO "Great Reset" to crush the Peons -- you must see yourself as above the coming carnage -- I have news for you -- your not.@ruralguyGarliv , says: January 15, 2021 at 1:51 pm GMT • 4.2 hours ago
We'll know we're in an actual civil war when different branches of the military, or units within a branch are fighting each other or when the police are fighting the military. Don't hold your breath of course because every cop and soldier in America is a traitor and they're all on the same team.@atlantis_dwellerSick of Orcs , says: January 15, 2021 at 2:09 pm GMT • 3.9 hours ago
What I still find unfathomable is the fact that the steal was so obvious: so in your face but yet the big media, big tech, federal and state law enforcements, spooks, judges, big GOP politicians etc still behave like nothing ever happened. Trump and his supporters are now labeled domestic terrorists and lawfare is about to be unleashed on them. It's surreal.Emslander , says: January 15, 2021 at 2:20 pm GMT • 3.8 hours ago
Had the Orange heeded his MAGA base rather than his (((rat-in-law))) he'd still be President. There was certainly election fraud; enough of the betrayed base stayed home to make it effective. Trump was a p -- y all four years and got what he deserved. He was always a stop-gap time-buying non-solution...@Reg CæsarTrinity , says: January 15, 2021 at 2:25 pm GMT • 3.7 hours ago
...issues can no longer be discussed openly, the reliability of elections in the USA is the most important issue that faces us. The people will accept an honest winner in a serious election. Nothing is as cleansing to our natural divisions as the result of a well-contested election, in the knowledge that, in a reasonable interval, the same offices will be up for new contests.
Nothing is as damaging to our peace of mind as knowing that one side won fairly, but was robbed of governing. I thank Ron Unz for writing and publishing such a reasonably argued essay on the matter. It is the gold standard for 2020 election analyses.Temporary Insanity , says: January 15, 2021 at 2:36 pm GMT • 3.5 hours ago
This is sad people. Was talking to a friend and even his 80 something year old mother commented on how decrepit Sleazy Joe looks and walks. I was watching him deliver "his speech" last night and the guy had a hard time reading a few sentences off the teleprompter without stammering and stuttering.
After an embarrassing and truly cringe worthy "speech" Biden is seen walking off. The dude can barely walk...anon  Disclaimer , says: January 15, 2021 at 2:42 pm GMT • 3.4 hours ago
For eighty million who cast their ballots for the old geezer, it's mostly out of economic necessity; however, for the seventy plus million people who are Trump supporters, it's a fight for their country and more importantly, culture.Albertde , says: January 15, 2021 at 2:44 pm GMT • 3.4 hours ago
Brought to you by the same people who gave us the Weimar Republic, only twice as vicious and vindictive this time because they know what they did wrong last time -- they weren't vicious and vindictive enough.macilrae , says: January 15, 2021 at 2:59 pm GMT • 3.1 hours ago
In a healthy country, there would have been no need for Trump.Old and Grumpy , says: January 15, 2021 at 3:05 pm GMT • 3.0 hours ago
When you consider Donald Trump's grotesque antics, his entirely unpresidential behavior, evident falsehoods and blatantly corrupt actions – together with the systematic media blitz taking every opportunity to show him in the worst possible light; it is quite astounding that he received as many votes as he did. Far, far more than could be accounted for by simply ascribing them to his 'deplorables'.
And, even if Biden did, in fact, just manage to win – presenting himself as a force of reason, stability and sanity – a great mass of voters sensed something in him that they distrusted even more than in Trump. That was a stunning rejection – of almost the same magnitude as Hillary's in 2016!@John GruskosAshley H , says: January 15, 2021 at 3:16 pm GMT • 2.8 hours ago
You're right, and Ron Unz is right. Had Trump retained his white male voters of 2016, the Democrats likely couldn't have pulled off the steal. But in the end Donald Trump was a mere salesmen selling a con.lysias , says: January 15, 2021 at 3:19 pm GMT • 2.8 hours ago
...If you had told people in France in 1785 or Russia in 1913 that within a few short years about a quarter of their population would be slaughtered in revolutionary turmoil and many more displaced, they would have dismissively laughed in your face believing – as do we – that their civilizations were far too advanced for such nonsense.
Let us hope such a horrific fate is not in store for all of us as the Great Reset is imposed on us all given how western civilization has clearly failed to the point where some sort of profound, substantive reform is inevitable.
Given that the foundation of this Reset comprises so much ill-will, deception, theft and coercion, it is unlikely that this new paradigm will benefit the millions of people it will soon dominate.Anonymous  Disclaimer , says: January 15, 2021 at 3:20 pm GMT • 2.8 hours ago
...Interesting book on Brit intelligence in the U.S. in 1940: Thomas Mahl's "Desperate Deception."@John Gruskossayless , says: January 15, 2021 at 3:21 pm GMT • 2.7 hours ago
Another can of worms, there would be additional Congressional hearings over it, etc. At the time Trump was still in the middle of the Muller investigation. That special prosecutor investigation tied up Trump until March 2019.
I firmly believe that no man in human history could have taken on and fought Deep State, the Swamp, the Establishment, media, GOPe, et al., as valiantly as Trump. Even in his 70's the man has superhuman energy, fortitude, and strategizing. I think Trump's greatest legacy will be that he ripped away the curtain and the masks fell and we all got to see just how nefarious and rigged the system is, from federal judges to our intelligence community to the FBI/DOJ to Congress to the mediaThe King is a Fink , says: January 15, 2021 at 3:26 pm GMT • 2.7 hours ago
"I don't know or care anything about Dominion voting machines"
Why not? Take a look at Patrick Byrne's summary of evidence for massive election fraud involving the Dominion machines, on his blog over at DeepCapture.
It will explain how a man who sheltered in his house, did not campaign, drew no more than six or seven or twenty-five people to his events, got seven million more votes than a man who drew up to thirty thousand people at his rallies.
...An expert witness in Georgia was able to hack into Dominion in front of the legislative committee in less than a minute. "We're in." In Dominion, and on the internet.
Dominion machines can do anything! They can assign a weight of 1.5 per single vote to one candidate, and .75 per vote to the other, and can adjust as necessary. They can assign batches of "adjudicated" ballots to the candidate of your choice. They can just switch votes from one candidate to the other in increments of several thousand, let's subtract 29,000 votes from candidate a and add them to b's column. They can allow access by a third party to the administrator's identity and password so the third party can enter and participate directly in tabulation of the votes.
And more. If your disfavored candidate is winning by a landslide and your 1.5/.75 ratio isn't working, you can put in a USB card and adjust accordingly.
If you're desperate you can upload tens of thousands of votes in a single drop which all, every one, go to your preferred candidate. And you can do it in one hour on a machine which can only handle a few thousand votes per hour, fed in manually.
If things get out of control you can call a halt to the vote count, send the observers home, and haul out the extra ballots stashed under the table skirt. But it's best to be mindful of the video cameras. Which they were not.
Really, read about it: Patrick Byrne, DeepCapture, "Evidence That The 2020 Election Was Rigged." Lays out the various ways by which it was done, then appends evidence using graphs, memos from election administrators, and statistical analysis.
He's no Trump supporter either, is a committed libertarian, and has never voted for either a Democrat or Republican presidential candidate in his life. He thinks Barack Obama graced the presidency and that Michelle Obama was a class act as First Lady.
Also: The Chinese government acquired Dominion for $400 million in the fall of 2020.@A123Jeff Davis , says: January 15, 2021 at 3:31 pm GMT • 2.6 hours ago
I found this interesting (posted by another commenter back in Nov):
Finally, does anyone think the Dominion case against Sydney Powell potentially offers an opportunity for the evidence of electoral fraud to be aired in public?@utuanon  Disclaimer , says: January 15, 2021 at 3:35 pm GMT • 2.5 hours ago
They won the election the old way: they stole it fair and square.Jeff Albertson , says: January 15, 2021 at 3:37 pm GMT • 2.5 hours ago
While it's an effective rhetorical tactic by our fearless leader Unz, there's no reason to be agnostic about CIA ballot-stuffing. That's as blindingly obvious as their censorship.
The ballot-stuffing shows only the most cursory measures to conceal it, consistent with a command structure that exercises precision control over media attention. CIA can censor adverse information on their candidate's trading in influence and abuse of function. So naturally CIA dumped votes in statistically absurd proportions, trusting to their Mockingbird media to short-circuit public inquiry. When you have arbitrary Nazi-grade life-and-death power, as CIA does, it's hard not to get sloppy. They don't give a fuck that you saw what they did there, cause shut up.@Tom Welsh ent-text">Ashley H , says: January 15, 2021 at 3:49 pm GMT • 2.3 hours ago
Spot on about postal votes; it's my only slight disagreement with Ron's take on the affair. These votes were being received for days, if not weeks before the deadline and could have been (and probably were) counted as they came in. The gross imbalance between Trump and Biden votes in these after-hours counts, along with the sudden spikes obvious on many graphs, is proof, imo, of the cheat. In order to get ahead of the narrative, the 'rats said it would happen, and, lo, it did.
If the regime can't provide for trustworthy elections, it can't expect to be regarded as legitimate. Probably by design; they don't need us.@The King is a FinkAshley H , says: January 15, 2021 at 3:51 pm GMT • 2.2 hours ago
Navarro's three reports do a good job of summarizing most of the possible vote fraud. He's a Harvard PhD so more than qualified to pull all the date together etc. They use many graphics and are easy and fast to read.@The King is a Finkutu , says: January 15, 2021 at 3:57 pm GMT • 2.1 hours ago
In this post-Republic new reality, no Court will take a case in which Discovery reveals any sort of election fraud. The election is over and it's now verboten to revisit it. Don't be surprised if archive.org is forced to delete thousands of articles about it. Orwellian timesScut Farkus , says: January 15, 2021 at 4:05 pm GMT • 2.0 hours ago
Incumbent Donald Trump lost Arizona, Georgia, and Wisconsin by such extremely narrow margins that a swing of less than 22,000 votes in those crucial states would have gotten him reelected. With a record 158 million votes cast, this amounted to a victory margin of around 0.01% . So if just one American voter in 7,000 had changed his mind, Trump might have received another four years in office. One American voter in 7,000
Margins of general vote do not matter. Biden won Arizona, Georgia, and Wisconsin by much higher margins than 0.01%. In Arizona Biden won by 0.3% of all votes in Arizona and in Georgia by 0.2%. These are small margins but probably comparable to margins in swing states in 2016 where Trump won.@Garliv It's for your own good, of course. I once read an article written by someone who had a chance to hang out with the rich, powerful, famous, etc. and gain some perspective on their thinking. They really do believe that it's their role to shape the future for the proles. I know someone who's just like that.edward manfredonia , says: January 15, 2021 at 4:19 pm GMT • 1.8 hours ago
If you like your bourgeois job and want to keep it, you will support the narrative.
All of the comments on here that analyze DJT's strengths and weaknesses miss the point. I personally think he made some very poor choices; but, to inappropriately paraphrase Carville, it's the fraud, stupid.RudyM , says: January 15, 2021 at 4:30 pm GMT • 1.6 hours ago
Occam's Razor should be applied- instead of the nonsense of Chavez having an interest in voting software; voting machines being manipulated; truckloads of paper ballots being moved across state lines- my favorite; etc.
The mail in ballots could be sent to a nursing home or to individuals, who are very old, and these individuals could be instructed by a relative to sign their name.
I frequently explain to individuals, whose first language is not English, the papers, which they are signing. I explain their 401K and retirement plan withdrawals.
It would be very easy to have individuals in a nursing home or even an adult day care center for mentally (dementia) incapacitated adults sign ballots. There are numerous day care centers in New York City, federally funded, where individuals could be coaxed to sign ballots. Just say Trump will close the day care center -- especially where interpreters must be provided because the individuals cannot understand English due to varying stages of mental incapacity.
The day care center is a racket. I believe the reimbursement rate under Medicaid-Medicare is $120 per day. Plus, the transportation fee - approximately $40 per person each way. These centers flourish in cities, such as New York City, Newark, Philadelphia, etc. I have yet to hear anyone mention that Nancy Pelosi's father was Mayor of Baltimore, Thomas D'Alesandro Jr. And Baltimore is one city that it totally devastated by drugs, prostitution, crime, etc.
Now for the important question. Did Nancy Pelosi have $12 pints of ice cream in her office?
Edward Manfredonia@Ash Williamsanon  Disclaimer , says: January 15, 2021 at 4:31 pm GMT • 1.6 hours ago
The Navarro report is a useful summary.
But I wonder how many people have watched the twenty hours or so of state legislature hearings related to the election. Can people just not be bothered? These were historic hearings of huge importance, but I assume they didn't get much coverage in the MSM. I think most of them were livestreamed only by small right-wing networks.Trinity , says: January 15, 2021 at 4:42 pm GMT • 1.4 hours ago
Servant of Gla'aki 39, Hapalong 101 anent Willke: Willke sold a million books in less than two months. He was more of a media phenom than Trump, much hotter at the time of the election. They were going to make a movie of One World. And his message was more populist, too – basically, fuck your US national interest, we want peace and freedom. He just came out and said what everybody thought, Oh boy, now that we won the war, we'll get the peace and freedom that we fought for! So he didn't need a Sheldon or a Gina to rig elections and install him.
Dulles was squirming around under rocks at that time (he cut his teeth at the League of Nations founding,) even before he and his ultras got their Gestapo in Foggy Bottom, and they arranged Hillary-style party machinations to push Willke aside.
Now of course there's a second line of defense, the CIA proprietaries that steal the election directly:
Diebold and its brass-plate acquirers. CIA set them up to ratfuck Kerry and Maduro and sheep-dipped them to ratfuck Trump.
The whole world knows the USA is a ridiculous fake democracy, a totalitarian CIA pariah state voting alone against peace, development and human rights. (Just look at the 2nd Committee vote on A/C.2/75/L.4/Rev.1) The USA is North Korea with an ugly leisure squad. It's the beltway that deserves our fire and fury. Just wipe it out with WMD and start again.
https://www.rt.com/usa/364288-us-election-international-standards-osce/Robert Dolan , says: January 15, 2021 at 4:45 pm GMT • 1.3 hours ago
What were the results of the 2016 election? Billary received 65 million to Trumps 62 million. Gotcha. So we have roughly 127 million who showed up to vote that time. (Wonder how many of those were legit.) So ONLY 4 years later, Joe "I Look Like I'm Drugged" Biden ALLEGEDLY received 80 million and Trump received 74 million. Okay, that is a turnout of 154 million votes. So if I believe in this fairy tale, I was supposed to believe that in ONLY 4 years the vote count increased by an alleged 27 million. Hell, a lot of our most populous states do not even have that many people.
Like I say, I concede that Biden might have had about 60-65 million LEGIT votes to Trump's MINIMUM of 74 million. Hmm, so that means that total vote count would be 134-139 million. Hmm, sounds more reasonable to me. Numbers are not adding up folks.A123 , says: January 15, 2021 at 4:48 pm GMT • 1.3 hours ago
https://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2021/01/huge-despite-total-media-blackout-78-trump-voters-believe-election-rigged-stolen/@The King is a FinkCurmudgeon , says: January 15, 2021 at 5:02 pm GMT • 1.1 hours ago
There is a considerable amount of crowd sourced reporting on electoral fraud collected here: https://hereistheevidence.com
They also have a special section for issues related to the Capitol Protest (not riot): https://hereistheevidence.com/capitol-protest-1-6-21/
PEACE@A123David Martin , says: Website January 15, 2021 at 5:22 pm GMT • 43 minutes ago
...Laws don't say a little bit of fraud is OK, because the fraud committed on or by a business didn't cause bankruptcy. Either there was fraud, or there wasn't. If there was, then the results of the election in those areas are null and void. The certification of those results expands the fraud to the state level.
That several courts refused to hear cases for lack of standing, is patently ridiculous. If a candidate has no standing, who does? In an election, everybody has standing because they are affected by the result, and by virtue of Citizens United , corporations do as well.Turk 152 , says: January 15, 2021 at 5:26 pm GMT • 39 minutes ago
https://dcdave.heresycentral.is/2021/01/07/the-big-guy-address/Anon  Disclaimer , says: January 15, 2021 at 5:29 pm GMT • 36 minutes ago
In an ideal world, we would be discussing how we can ensure the integrity of our elections, so that both substantively and the appearance of integrity is upheld. Instead, we are trying to get citizens jailed (right & left) for protesting the sanctity of a system in which both sides know is corrupt. There is no question in Dems mind that Bush stole the election in 2000, so why is it any different now that the shoe is on the other foot.
Our oligarch rulers know very well that they rig elections, it has been documented under LBJ, not to mention the long list of coups all over the world organized by the intelligence agencies over the past 50 years, these are historical facts. But rather than citizens being able to focus on the real problem, we are beating the crap out of our fellow citizens for something we know all know is real; and pointing to the other side as the source of the corruption. This is exactly why the rich stay rich and the poor stay poor.Schuetze , says: January 15, 2021 at 5:31 pm GMT • 34 minutes ago
Mr. Unz, who is always well informed, highly organized and impeccably lucid, gives a credible and succinct analysis of the dumpster fire that is American politics, indeed of this country's leadership across the board. It creates mostly chaos and suffering every time it meddles in our affairs these days, certainly over the long run but especially in its current crash program to impose tyranny over the many so the few can take whatever they want whether they require it or not.
Watch this recent interview of Chris Hedges by Jimmy Dore about the root causes of our current woes. Hedges speaks off the cuff in words that sound as polished, powerful and precise as the language in tracts considered to be classics. His Pulitzer clearly was not found in a Cracker Jack box.
He ain't buying that Trump alone was the fount of all our sorrows or that a deceiving sycophantic grifter like Joe Biden is the fix for anything. There were many bad actors, both GOPers and Dems, both office holders and offstage string-pullers, who have contributed to the coming collapse of this country, which decapitating Trump will not prevent. Joe just happens to be the useful idiot who will be left holding the bag when the end comes, which won't be long now. Factoring in Kamala's possible ascension to the throne will change nothing. Like Joe, she's just a cluck there to take the same orders.@Carroll Price ...Trump also flew on the Lolita express. If after all the broken promises that Trump made to his Maga followers anyone still thinks that he is an outsider is, frankly, an idiot.
Trump is a lifetime actor and the entire election was just one big show.
One way we will know if Trump really was a threat to the swamp and an outsider will be what happens after Jan 20. If Trump ends up dead or impoverished and in prison then we will know that he was a real threat. If he flies off into the sunset, perhaps even starting a media company, then we will know that it was all one big vaudeville act.
Jan 15, 2021 | www.moonofalabama.org
psychohistorian , Jan 15 2021 5:07 utc | 69
@ Grieved | Jan 14 2021 23:05 utc | 47 who wrote
I'm not deep in the mechanics of this, but I've always assumed that the need for continual growth, after an economy could and should have turned steady-state, is a disease that can be laid squarely at the door of compound interest.
@ karlof1 | Jan 15 2021 0:39 utc | 57 who wrote
Yes, compound interest is part of that problem, but so is an expanding population or a shrinking resource base. Yes, we face all three of those problems and are certainly in an Overshoot situation few genuinely appreciate.
I think humanity needs a frontier more than growth. We need to keep chasing our ignorance.
We lack the common will to regulate our social interactions at a structural level that guarantees some level of equality and justice. Having the will I believe we have the ability.
Jan 13, 2021 | www.unz.com
Joe Biden has the people who took over the Capitol on Jan. 6 figured out. In just two days, he had them pegged for "a bunch of thugs, insurrectionists, white supremacists, and anti-Semites, and it's not enough." Not enough? He also said they were "domestic terrorists."
Senators Charles Schumer and Lindsay Graham , Gov. Gretchen Whitmer , "Squad" leader Cori Bush and plenty of others agreed that they were domestic terrorists. Even the mayor of Orlando says so, and DC mayor Muriel Bowser called the occupation " textbook terrorism " so that clinches it.
Curiously, there is a federal definition of domestic terrorism, but it isn't a crime. There is now tremendous pressure to change that, and depending on what kind of law takes shape, there could be huge implications for dissidents.
For now, this definition from 18 U.S. Code § 2331 is worth studying:
(5) the term "domestic terrorism" means activities that -- (A) involve acts dangerous to human life that are a violation of the criminal laws of the United States or of any State; (B) appear to be intended -- (i) to intimidate or coerce a civilian population; (ii) to influence the policy of a government by intimidation or coercion; or (iii) to affect the conduct of a government by mass destruction, assassination, or kidnapping; and (C) occur primarily within the territorial jurisdiction of the United States.
Does this apply to the Capitol takeover? Domestic terrorism must be an illegal act "dangerous to human life" and meant to influence policy. The Trump supporters wanted to influence policy alright, but what does "dangerous to human life" mean? The Michigan Penal Code says it is "that which causes a substantial likelihood of death or serious injury."
That wouldn't include trespassing, breaking and entering, or even scuffling with the police. Anyone who may have killed Capitol police officer Brian Sicknick would meet the definition of a "domestic terrorist," but the circumstances of his death are still not clear. It may be there wasn't a single "textbook" domestic terrorist at the Capitol that day. Lefties are gloating over the death of Ashli Babbitt, but the only thing she did that was "dangerous to human life" was stop a bullet.
Why all the talk about "domestic terrorism"? I suspect it's because people can't stand the idea that the Trump mob could be guilty of nothing more than trespassing. Time reports sadly that there are no laws against domestic terrorism, but lists the charges it wants brought: seditious conspiracy, which carries a 20-year maximum sentence, homicide, assault, interstate travel in aid of racketeering, restricted-area violations, vandalism, and trespassing.
Sure enough, the Justice Department has set up a task force to file sedition and conspiracy charges . The investigation is said to be "one of the most expansive criminal investigations in the history of the Justice Department." The authorities promise to hunt the rioters -- many of whom just walked through an open door -- to the ends of the earth as if they were Osama bin Laden. The contrast with the handling of BLM and antifa rioters is stark.
Democrat Rep. Bennie Thompson, who chairs the House Committee on Homeland Security, has another idea . "Given the heinous domestic terrorist attack on the U.S. Capitol," he wants everyone involved put on the No-Fly List. Rep. Jason Crow, a member of the House Armed Services Committee, wants the US Army Secretary to track down and court martial every soldier who entered the Capitol. A court martial requires a violation of the Uniform Code of Military Justice, usually for a serious felony. Police departments in Virginia , Washington , and Pennsylvania are scouring their rosters , looking for officers who went to the rally, whether they entered the Capitol or not. Will they be fired?
Wikipedia describes John McCain's daughter Meghan as a "columnist, author, and television personality." She wants the rioters sent to Guantanamo : "They should be treated the same way we treat Al-Qaeda" -- yet another American frustrated by the lack of a law against domestic terrorism.
... ... ...
... [neoliberal] Lefties were of course pleased that "white supremacists" can now officially be "terrorists." This is very important for any potential new law because the occupation of the Capitol has unleashed a wave of vitriol against "white supremacy," even though there is no evidence the Trump supporters had the slightest racial motivation. NBC News ran this headline : "'Vintage white rage': Why the riots were about the perceived loss of white power." Politico tells us "there's a term for what happened at the Capitol this week: 'whitelash'." The Atlantic explained that "the Capitol riot was an attack on multiracial democracy." The Guardian 's headline was "Insurrection Day: When White Supremacist Terror Came to the US Capitol."
Black Congressman Hank Johnson told Al Sharpton that the black Capitol policeman who killed Ashli Babbitt had singlehandedly put down a lynch mob: If he hadn't shot her, "I have no doubt that some of us who look like me would've been hanging from the railings of the 3rd floor, onto the House floor, swinging like . . . strange fruit." Nancy Pelosi said that the people who entered the Capitol "have chosen their whiteness over democracy," whatever that means.
This perfectly matches the views of Richard Durbin, ranking member on the Senate Subcommittees for Defense and for the Constitution. In 2019, he introduced the Domestic Terrorism Prevention Act , which called white supremacy "the most significant domestic terrorism threat facing the United States." The act was only about 3,000 words but used "white supremacist" 12 times, "neo-Nazi" six times, "far-right" eight times, and "hate crime" 10 times. It was silent on any other kind of domestic terrorism. Sen. Durbin says he will reintroduce the bill right away in light of the Capitol takeover.
There is no telling what laws could pass in this fevered environment, but it's important to note what Mr. Durbin's 2019 bill did and did not do. It did not make domestic terrorism a crime or authorize the designation of "domestic terrorism organizations," which would mean jailing Americans as if they were Al-Qaeda members and seizing assets without notice. What it did do was set up special offices in the FBI, Justice Department, and Homeland Security "to analyze and monitor domestic terrorist activity and . . . take steps to prevent domestic terrorism." It's anyone's guess what those "steps" were supposed to be.
The bill also required the three agencies to "review each hate crime incident reported during the preceding year to determine whether the incident also constitutes a domestic terrorism-related incident," though it didn't say to what end.
Sen. Durbin loves to quote FBI Director Christopher A. Wray's testimony before Congress in 2019: "A majority of the domestic terrorism cases that we've investigated are motivated by some version of what you might call white supremacy . . . ."
However, the bill used the definition of "domestic terrorism" from 18 U.S. Code § 2331 cited above, which is ideologically neutral. That means Black Lives Matter and antifa commit vastly more "domestic terrorism" than all the "white supremacists," "neo-Nazis," and "far-right extremists" combined. Anyone who shouts "Defund the police," "Justice for Breonna Taylor," "Black lives matter," or even "I can't breathe" is trying to "influence the policy of a government." If, in that context, someone commits an illegal act "dangerous to human life," he is a domestic terrorist. Since the death of George Floyd , there have been countless dangerous-to-human-life acts of arson and aggravated assault; even attempts to stop ambulances from bringing wounded officers to emergency rooms. If "white supremacists" were organizing freeway shutdowns, they would surely count as "dangerous to human life."
Majority of One , says: January 14, 2021 at 5:31 am GMT • 9.2 hours agoThe Real World , says: January 14, 2021 at 5:33 am GMT • 9.2 hours ago
The levels of hypocritical hysteria dominating the corporate airwaves and most electronic media, together with an even more amplified level among the pro$titicians in the Di$trict of Corruption means they are scared.
They suddenly feel vulnerable. Are they as vulnerable as the people of Yemen who are being bombed daily and starvation blockaded by the $audi crime clan with the full. assistance of those D.C. Pro$titician$? Are they as vulnerable as those half million!!! deliberately starved Iraqi children whom Madelein Albrietstein declared to be "worth it" in forwarding the I$raeli agenda?
Could it just simply be that they are themselves guilty of crimes against humanity and in violation of their oaths to protect the Constitution of the United States from all enemies foreign and DOMESTIC? The little gal under the streetlight with high heels, short skirt and low-hanging purse in the midnight hour at least provides a desired service. Can the same be said for the Pro$titicians on the Hill overlooking Urination'$ Capitol?
As for the media whores and pre$$titute$, being myself a recovering journalist; there is good reason to believe that I have correctly identified them.Lee , says: January 14, 2021 at 5:44 am GMT • 9.0 hours ago
I don't see how it can't be recognized that Trump set-up his own supporters by luring them to DC.
Going to Wash DC to protest wasn't going to change the vote outcome in Congress and any fool could anticipate Antifa types would show up (apparently Pelosi, Schumer, McConnell and DC Mayor were advised they were planning to come and riot. So Trump had to have known too.)
Now, neither POTUS or Congress members will publicly identify the organized Antifa thug element. So, Trump supporters, and by extension Repubs, are being widely labeled as "domestic terrorists'. While Trump releases another video today lecturing about violence which implicates HIS supporters by no mention of the other elements there.
Despicable! He threw them under a bus.Just another serf , says: January 14, 2021 at 5:51 am GMT • 8.9 hours ago
From the article:
Congressman Hank Johnson told Al Sharpton that the black Capitol policeman who killed Ashli Babbitt had singlehandedly put down a lynch mob: If he hadn't shot her, "I have no doubt that some of us who look like me would've been hanging from the railings of the 3rd floor, onto the House floor, swinging like . . . strange fruit.
This statement is quite stupid but Johnson has said worse in the past:
During a House Armed Services Committee hearing on March 25, 2010 concerning the U.S. military installation on the island of Guam, Johnson said to Admiral Robert F. Willard, Commander of U.S. Pacific Command, "My fear is that the whole island will become so overly populated that it will tip over and capsize", to which Admiral Willard replied, "We don't anticipate that."
Wikipedianiceland , says: January 14, 2021 at 6:18 am GMT • 8.4 hours ago
If there are any grounds for optimism
There are no ""grounds for optimism". These people have the upper hand and they want their political/racial opponents absolutely crushed...stevennonemaker88 , says: January 14, 2021 at 6:22 am GMT • 8.3 hours ago
The most interesting article I read in past years is Ron Unz;
I feel this is happening again, before our very eyes.Wally , says: January 14, 2021 at 6:59 am GMT • 7.7 hours ago
The great thing about language in the 21st century is it means whatever you want it to mean, sort of like Alice in wonderland. A terrorist is whatever they deem to be a terrorist; anyone who does not go along with their agenda. "building back better" means repression and censorship. "the new normal" means global corporate government and the great reset agenda. "global pandemic" means a plandemic that kills one in a million healthy young people. etc. Facts and information do not matter to these people; it is 1984. This struggle will be decided by force, as logical arguments are useless to those who deny the basic axioms of reality and existence (almost all libtards and most rinos). I think in a way it is a good thing that things are getting worse for the average middle american. Things will need to get much worse before they get better as more than half the people are still totally asleep. Of the minority that are awake, most of us have too much to lose right now . But we need to organize and prepare to take action soon or we will be bled to death by a thousand cuts as they have been doing for a while now. What kind of a world will our children inherit if we stay silent and apathetic?@Colin Wright ten Clarke, who believes that blacks are superior in all ways because they have more melanin.Abdul Alhazred , says: January 14, 2021 at 7:40 am GMT • 7.0 hours ago
Seriously, she said it.
Tucker Carlson brings up Holocaust Denial, the IHR, and Tony Martin, trying to discredit a Biden nominee : https://forum.codoh.com/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=13746
more on this: https://duckduckgo.com/?q=carlson+kristen+clarke&t=h_&ia=web@The Real Worldidealogus , says: Website January 14, 2021 at 7:47 am GMT • 6.9 hours ago
'Set up like a bowling pin' and from the traitor who pardoned Jonathan Pollard!Ray Caruso , says: January 14, 2021 at 7:53 am GMT • 6.8 hours ago
O MY GOD!
All the discussions around Trump reminded me of Hitler after Stalingrad.
After the defeat at Stalingrad, the Germans waited 2 years for Hitler to use the secret weapon and win the war. The German army suffered defeat after defeat, the Russian communists were searching for Hitler's body through Bunkers and the Germans still waited for the super-secret weapon to save them.
Two months after the election, Trump's team suffered defeat after defeat. Trump is waiting for jail, but his supporters are convinced that Trump still has a secret weapon with which will win the election.When you wake up to reality. Trump is a false Messiah and he he doesn't have a super-secret-weapon.
You have to fight your self for justice and truth and not wait for someoneelse to fight for you while you button porn, tiktok or chat smalltalk on Facebook.
I can't forget what Mother Teresa said 30 years ago: "Don't wait for a leader because he won't come. Be your own leaders."
Are We All 'Domestic Terrorists'?
You all are for sure. I just changed my party registration and I'm now a proud Democrat. I don't want to be denied jobs, loans, transportation, and possibly freedom and life itself for the sake of a country that has collectively decided to destroy itself.
Whitewolf , says: January 13, 2021 at 10:03 am GMT • 11.8 hours ago
Jan 13, 2021 | www.unz.com
Mass protests generally have two distinct but intertwined goals: 1) to "make a statement," and 2) to inflict a cost. To state the obvious, mass protests occur because a group of people are unhappy about something, and they want something to change. Change only occurs, in a large bureaucratic nation like ours, if a loud "message" is conveyed, or if the price of non-change becomes too high. If thousands of Trump voters are mad as hell because they believe the election was stolen, and if they want to protest, they can either make their message heard and then hope for the best (not much hope there), or they can attempt to punish the thieves -- that is, make them incur some cost for their malfeasance.
What did the mob achieve on Wednesday? We already knew their message -- Trump won the election, and it was stolen. We know they have support across the country; even our biased media admit to some 74 million Trump voters, of whom 70% to 80% (depending on the poll) think the election was stolen. But then what? "We're mad as hell and we're not going to take it." And then what? The message is impotent. It has no consequence.
If 'the message' was doomed to impotence, inflicting 'a cost' was much more tangible, and much more achievable. By forcing their way into the Capitol building, a motivated and reasonably prepared mob could have caused tremendous damage. If -- and I stress the conditional here -- if they wanted to inflict damage, they had a golden opportunity. They had guns, presumably hidden, and far outnumbered the handful of guards. Any firefight would have been over quickly, with the mob victorious. Security guards, staffers, even congressmen would have been easy prey, for kidnapping, injury, or worse. But this did not happen.
... ... ...
Notice how congressmen, left and right, responded to the event. All were indignant. All were outraged. All condemned the "senseless violence" of the crazed mob and the "attempted overthrow" of American democracy. All of them: left, right, and center; Democrat and Republican; Trump supporter or not. All of them condemned it.
Again: Why? The answer here is clear: All congressmen, of all stripes, have a vested interest in sustaining the system, more or less in its current form . This is obvious. They are all 'winners' in the system. It has made them all rich, famous, and powerful. Yes, they fight for relative power and relative influence, but this is largely a sham. The Republican-Democrat battles are only there to give the impression of real competition. Instead, in reality, we have a deep and radical monopoly -- a monopoly of pro-corporate, pro-capitalist, pro-war, pro-Israel, and pro-Jewish individuals. On these things, they all agree. I've been saying as much for many years: We should focus not on what divides the two parties, but on what unites them . This is far more revealing.
... More than anything, Trump was a symbol: a symbol of resistance, of defiance, and of an 'in your face' attitude. But nothing more. The Trump presidency was all show, no substance. It was, and is, hardly worth dying over.
And by 'media,' I mean all media. Consider what our beloved Tucker Carlson had to say , speaking at the beginning of his show on the very first day after the protest:
Political violence begets political violence. That is an iron law that never changes. We have to be against that, no matter who commits the violence or under what pretext, no matter how many self-interested demagogues assure us the violence is justified or necessary. We have a duty to oppose all of this, not simply because political violence kills other people's children, but because in the end it doesn't work.
No good person will live a happier life because [Ashli Babbitt] was killed in a hallway of the Capitol today. So our only option, as a practical matter, is to fix what is causing this in the first place. You may have nothing in common with the people on the other side of the country -- increasingly, you probably don't -- but you're stuck with them. The idea that groups of Americans will somehow break off into separate peaceful nations of like-minded citizens is a fantasy. That will not happen. There is no such thing as 'peaceful separation'; there never has been, and there won't be.
The two hemispheres of this country are inseparably intertwined, like conjoined twins. Neither can leave without killing the other. As horrifying as this moment is, we have no option but to make it better, to gut it out.
Beavertales , says: January 12, 2021 at 10:00 pm GMT • 23.9 hours agostevennonemaker88 , says: January 13, 2021 at 5:45 am GMT • 16.1 hours ago
The entry of the Capitol building was spontaneous. Nobody saw it coming.
In the immediate aftermath, the media didn't know whether to promote it or bury it. It took hours and days for the narrative to coalesce on orders from the top.
As it was happening, the media was gob-smacked. The 'insurrection' narrative didn't truly get going until the protest was long over.shylockcracy , says: January 13, 2021 at 5:51 am GMT • 16.0 hours ago
I thought this was a pretty good article. Virtually no politician is on the side of the people (maybe Ron Paul is the exception)...Thomasina , says: January 13, 2021 at 5:58 am GMT • 15.9 hours ago
It's real tiresome to do this but people need to be reminded that Ziocorporate conman fraud Trump and his MAGA brand are a product of the same lot that governs the Democrats, and that he was never on his constituency's side:
"Donald Trump endorses Benjamin Netanyahu for PM"
And it's necessary because if there's a chance to unite even a small group of people after realising how they're being had, then there's a chance for a small change to snowball into something larger. And it should not stay on the white side of the divide, it's not like the plandemic's been killing the economy for whites only. No "populist anti-Deep State patriot" or national leader goes around endorsing other countries' politicians, much less Israel's, the purest manifestation of corporate bankster power acting in unison with neocolonial globalism, a trait shared by Biden and Trump.
Actions should be peaceful, because entities like the Pentagon and CIA have an absolute monopoly on violent repression...SwedeMan , says: January 13, 2021 at 6:59 am GMT • 14.9 hours ago
One Christian fellow I listened to said that Antifa were definitely there. He took video of them walking down the street. That just proves to me that even Antifa knew they were no threat, otherwise they wouldn't have been mingling among thousands and thousands of Trump supporters.
The fellow said that from what he could see, the Trump protesters were unarmed, well behaved, smiling, and content with waving their flags. He said they are proud patriots and would never think of destroying art work or smashing up the Capitol Building.
He said on the 15 to 20 previous trips he's made to the Capitol Building, the pop-up metal barriers have always been up, but no barriers were up on January 6th. He said on a previous trip he had stepped onto the grass to take a picture and was quickly told by an officer to "get off the grass". But on January 6th, the sidewalks were blocked off, forcing people onto the grass.
We've seen the video of what looks to be an Antifa member breaking a window, only to be stopped by a Trump supporter.
No, these were salt of the earth people who were no threat to Antifa OR the spineless politicians. They knew this, but they've played it up for all it's worth.
And where was the police presence? Nowhere.Franz , says: January 13, 2021 at 7:13 am GMT • 14.6 hours ago
The main physical damage was the supposed theft of Pelosis laptop. Can I take a look at it?@James Speaks andbook by Edward N. LuttwakEl Dato , says: January 13, 2021 at 7:16 am GMT • 14.6 hours ago
Amazon includes a couple accurate blurbs on the product description page:
This short book is wicked, truthful, and entertaining. The author, after outlining a step-by-step procedure for bringing about a coup, analyzes modern (post–Second World War) coups, and points out why some succeeded and others failed. ( New Yorker )
An extraordinarily competent and well-written work, displaying very wide knowledge of the ways in which coups, both successful and unsuccessful, have actually been organized. ( Times Literary Supplement )El Dato , says:
You don't do a "coup" by invading the congressional discussion bunker in a nominal democracy. You do a "coup" by ordering up CIA-organized troops to take over communication centers as checkpoints secured by APCs go up everywhere as congresscritters are frogmarched to a nearby stadium. The CEOs and salaried Wokers of the social meedja companies would swear enthusiastic allegiance to the new powers. Antifa would be issued clean shirts, ties and government-approved truncheons. Then a grand proclamation that there will be a convention to work towards national unity. Ooops, that last part actually happened.
If there had been a coup, it would 100% evident.
If there had been fair elections, it would 100% evident.
Forze , says: January 13, 2021 at 12:11 pm GMT • 9.7 hours ago
The event was, variously, a "coup," an "insurrection," or at minimum, "a riot." Protesters were "right-wing extremists" and even "domestic terrorists" who were attacking "the very basis of American democracy."
Attacking the very basis of American democracy?
The only reason the crowd was there in the first place was to protest against the people committing those crimes through election fraud. Hopefully at least the crowd has figured out that the Republicans and Trump are not on their side...
Johnny Walker Read , says: January 13, 2021 at 3:01 pm GMT • 6.8 hours ago
Jazzhand McFeels of https://therightstuff.biz/ has written a very interesting article on Dissident Mag about some sudden changes in the administration that could explain this thing.
There's also a podcast with even more facts: https://fash-the-nation.libsyn.com/ftn-372-rage-against-the-regime
Twodees Partain , says: January 13, 2021 at 3:16 pm GMT • 6.6 hours ago
Then things got ugly. Around 3:15, Ashli Babbitt was shot and killed, evidently by a security guard.
I don't know how this hoax could be exposed any better. WTFU people, you are being played.
@Franklin RyckaertAnonymous  Disclaimer , says: January 13, 2021 at 3:54 pm GMT • 6.0 hours ago
If the attack on the Capitol was already so clumsy and ineffective, how could those same people succeed in the much more difficult task of seccession?
You're assuming that the phony attack was planned by the people who would be involved in a secession movement. I haven't seen any evidence that it was.
anastasia , says: January 13, 2021 at 5:01 pm GMT • 4.8 hours ago
Cui Bono? The Key to 6 January is what did NOT happen. The two houses of congress had gone off to hear, separately, in public broadcast, evidence from objecting congressmen that there was massive electoral fraud to criminally deliver the election to Biden. MSM transmitted the opening statements to the debate by McConnell and Schumer. These two said that there was no election fraud. MSM then pulled away when the other congressmen started presenting the view that there WAS fraud. Although MSM was not going to carry what the people are not supposed to know, and filled in instead with their own propagandists and the Party Line, the proceedings examining election fraud would have been seen by some of the public through the internet streams and C-Span. This was clear evidence which the courts should have heard, but refused to hear. BUT, instead of Congress publicly hearing evidence, the hearings abruptly STOPPED. Why? The Capitol police, following instructions, opened the barricades and waved the demonstrators to come in. The demonstrators were guided to the spot where the Deep State assassin was waiting. A person was shot. After that, there were NO MORE discussions of election fraud. Biden was confirmed without the airing of evidence of fraud. 6 January was a simple, but elegant, Deep State SETUP. A psyop. The American people have been, once again, deceived. Once everybody submits to vaccination there will never again be disputed elections, just like in the third world.
Ugetit , says: January 13, 2021 at 5:13 pm GMT • 4.6 hours ago
Correction: The media said that the policeman "collapsed when he got back to the Precinct. .that he MAY have been hit with a fire extinguisher." It was not reported as fact. No other subsequent report abouthow he died albeit it should have been established by now.
The second poilce officer who the media says was "killed" by the "riots" was a man who we heard nothing about on the date of the event, but who, five days later, committed suicide. The suicide story is not speculation. It was given as a fact. They call this suicide a "killing" because of the riots. It is more likely a police officer shooting his mouth off about these lies,who, five days later was suicided.
This summer and fall at least a dozen police officers were killed. Many more were injured. One got his eye knocked out. Many were very gravely injured. The government officials applauded their killers, posted bail for them, and every step of the way government officials "incited the violence".
Trump made a speech in front of his supporters laying out the evidence of the election fraud. He was complaining about the election fraud, a fraud that was never scutinized or investigated by anyone except his own lawyers and a few other lawyers, like Sidney Powell. They want to impeach him for publicly complaining about their stealing the election from him. It's like someone getting their home stolen, and when the victim publicly complains, he is threatened with arrest.
Again, they fundament their impeachment grounds on the "insurrection" of January 6, but again, like the election fraud, no one has scrutinized or conducted the most cursory investigation of it The fact that we still don't know how that policeman died is telling. The speculations made about him getting hit by a fire extinguisher are still floating around when at this point, it should be an established fact how he died. The dopiest doctor in this country would be able to diagnose a trauma to the head or body, if there were any physical trauma of that kind.
Two people died from natural causes. Yet, no details are given. One woman, age 34 and overweight was said to have been "trampled by the mob." Minutes after her death her family and closest friends were bad mouthing her, saying that she was mentally unstable, a conspiracy theorist, and "had problems in the past." She just died shortly before, and that was their public statements about their dearest friend and family member.
Ashli Babbits death was a provocative act that would have encouraged Trump supporters to turn on the police. It is no coincidence that those around her breaking windows, and screaming that she was dead when she was not, also provoked the crowds of Trump supporters. They are seen clearly on the video near Ashli not only breaking windows but changing their clothes after they had done so to hide their identification. This is clearly seen on the video. One guy provoking the crowds, breaking windows and screaming that Ashli was dead when she was not, was clearly Antifa, proven to be Antifa by video evidence. Yet, after January 6, he was interviewed by CNN. Clearly, the Antifa provocateur was not arrested by the Washington police or the FBI, but at least 6 Trump supporters were arrested for breaking curfew after 6 p.m. when all that happened at the Capitol was over. Those six were the first arrested – for breaking curfew. I do not find it a coincidence that both Ashli Babbitt and those breaking the windows around her, and screaming that she was dead when she was not, all acted to provoke the crowds and were all proven to be Antifa members. Was it coincidence that Ashli Babbitt's getting shot also acted as an unwitting provocateur, along with the Antifa members around her in the Capitol that day? Or was both Ashli and Antifa working for our security agencies that day, all playing their roles as agents provocateurs.
Why wouldn't the DOJ and FBI investigate the election fraud? Was it because the government did it? That would be a good reason not to investigate. Sidney Powell has produced an affidavit from a Serb who said it was the CIA who oversaw the manipulation of the US voting machines from Serbia, a country completely taken over by the CIA. He also writes about Hunter Biden's clandestine trip there in August 2020 to meet with these people.
@shylockcracyThomasina , says: January 13, 2021 at 5:30 pm GMT • 4.4 hours ago
Whoever didn't develop a sense of humor with your Ziocorporate fraud reality TV show president posing as patriot anti-deep maverick ain't gonna do it now.
Quite right. Unfortunately.
@Whitewolfgleongelpi , says: January 13, 2021 at 6:46 pm GMT • 3.1 hours ago
Yes, the coup and insurrection had ALREADY happened.
The coup and insurrection happened when the Democrats AND Republicans rigged the election. Democratic state courts and election officials changed voting laws, and Republican state legislatures looked the other way.
NOVEMBER 3, 2020 COUP.
Curmudgeon , says: January 13, 2021 at 6:47 pm GMT • 3.1 hours ago
You are wrong on so many counts. The event was not spontaneous, that is quite clear when the guards let the protesters in and they mostly went inside peacefully while a handful of rioters did minimal damage. Some Antifas, yeah, for sure. But someone stole Pelosi's computer or did they? That smacks of a plan. It achieved the objectives of the groups on the inside. The marchers that went inside had to have been, for the most part, surprised that they were welcomed. Did you see how they walked in between the purple ropes? Took photographs and selfies, some of these with the guards? Did you see the videos of some of the protesters stopping the people trying to break the glass windows? ...
@ThomasinaTrinity , says: Next New Comment January 13, 2021 at 7:58 pm GMT • 1.9 hours ago
This is a very interesting video.
Dr. Charles Fhandrich , says: Next New Comment January 13, 2021 at 8:15 pm GMT • 1.6 hours ago
I see "anti-Semitism" has made it to the floor during these impeachment hearings. LMAO. I would guess that 97% of Trump's base is the muh Israel crowd and Trump is as pro-Israel, pro-Jewish as it gets.
Even more laughable is Maxine Waters standing up and decrying violence. I guess Maxine has a very selective memory. All these demsheviks and the gay guys over at CNN who had no problem with Antifa/BLM are now staunch advocates for the Constitution and have a problem with riots. How in the hell do these cretins live with themselves? Have these hypocrites no shame? It can't be said enuff that Antifa/BLM's and (((the leftoids))) fingerprints are all over these riots. This is the new 9-11, folks, don't believe your lying eyes. Look at some of those scraggly people busting windows and attacking cops? Do they look like the average Trump voter? Do these young punks scaling the walls look like the average Trump voter?
Dr. Charles Fhandrich , says: Next New Comment January 13, 2021 at 8:26 pm GMT • 1.4 hours ago
The democratic party is now pretending to "call out" the "white supremacists" in Congress. Even if there were "white supremacists" in Congress, they would be not one bit different from "brown supremacists", "black supremacists","yellow supremaicsts", if by "supremacists" is meant politicians that belong to the Hispanic caucus, Black caucus or Asian caucus , ALL of whom claim to be looking out for the welfare of their respective group.
This is of course what is going on here. The democratic party politicians, Pelosi, Schumer, Biden and the whole left has been race baiting against white people as a default manner of doing politics for over sixty years now. It is the fault of the FAUX REPUBLICAN PARTY, that has been posing as conservatives who many whites believe "have their backs", against the hate and shenanigans the anti-white left perpetrates. THEY ARE WRONG. We see plainly now, that what the U.S. has is a uni-party, that is left and far left and includes good old Republican RINO's, but the left and far left is used by the elite to keep and gain control of the U.S. for their own agenda. The idea now operating is to belittle, denigrate and cow white folks as never before, because many of the protesters at the recent "event", scared the living bleep out of the politicians who have simply not been representing them. The corporations and tech moguls,etc. are not taking the side of the left because they are "better" citizens or politicians than people on the right side of the political spectrum. They take the side of the left because that is where these corporations know that the radical Americans are, the ones that burn, loot and murder and therefore can be used to divide the nation for the big corporations and tech moguls,etc. Any honest person that considers what happened at the so called violent demonstration in D.C. knows that compared to the violence that ANTIFA, BLM and other groups perpertrated on innocent Americans last summer, knows perfectly well that there is no comparison. The anti-white left, enabled by the democratic party and the news media, IN SERVICE OF THE U.S. ELITE. BURNED, LOOTED AND MURDERED THE CITIZENS OF AMERICA for months, WITHOUT A SINGLE WORD FROM PELOSI, SCHUMER, BIDEN HARRIS, ETC.
The simple fact is that these D.C. politicians were scared shitless by some plain American citizens, who finally felt they needed to meet these representatives that keep ignoring and abusing them. The wrong people are being blamed here.
"Lessons from the Trumpistan Coup"
Before reading this article, the reader might consider the fact that there was NO COUP, by the accepted meaning that the word "coup" denotes. Now, if the fake news media and the democratic party want to explain the event by bending the facts and actual events to fit their own interpretation of it, that's a problem due to their dishonesty.
Jan 13, 2021 | www.unz.com
Realist , says: January 12, 2021 at 3:36 pm GMT • 12.7 hours ago
FoxNews finally showed its true face during the election steal when it declared that Trump had lost the election long before any evidence in support of this thesis materialized.
For those that paid attention to Fox News, especially daytime and weekend Fox News its true face has been obvious for some time.
It is now abundantly clear that with a few exceptions (notably Tucker Carlson), FoxNews is very much on the same page as CNN and the rest of them.
While Carlson is not the worst on Fox News he is not a friend. His obsession with the China bad narrative is over the top. He is playing the GOP Inc side of the Deep State coin.
The A block last night was Carlson reiterating over and over, that he and Fox News were against violence like that at the Capitol. He stated that violence from the left was also wrong but that violence from the right was not the answer of course like most articles on this blog, he didn't say what the answer was.
Jan 13, 2021 | www.unz.com
FoxNews finally showed its true face during the election steal when it declared that Trump had lost the election long before any evidence in support of this thesis materialized. It is now abundantly clear that with a few exceptions (notably Tucker Carlson), FoxNews is very much on the same page as CNN and the rest of them. So what just happened and what is taking place now?
Americans have been brainwashed into calling things they don't like, or don't understand, as "Socialist" or even "Marxist". The sad reality is that most Americans sincerely believe that Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez or Bernie Sanders are "socialists", and when they see modern movies ridiculously filled with "minorities" and gender fluid freaks – this is a case of "cultural Marxism" (a totally meaningless term, by the way!). This is all utter nonsense, neither Marxism nor Socialism have anything to do with BLM, Antifa, Nancy Pelosi or Chuck Schumer (in fact, Marxism places a premium on real law and order!). I can't take the time and space here to discuss Marxism, but I do believe that there is one analytical tool which we can borrow from Marxist thought to try to make sense of what just happened in the USA. Let's begin by asking a simple question:
If "the mob" did not win, who did?
Most certainly not the abstract concept of "law and order". For one thing, it is now abundantly clear that some cops deliberately let a (rather small) subset of protestors not only across police lines but even inside the Capitol Building itself. That is not exactly law and order, now is it? Furthermore, it is now also clear that Ashli Babbitt was very deliberately shot by an (apparently black) cop who was then quickly hidden away from sight by the authorities. Not exactly law and order either.
Neither did the abstract concept of "democracy" win anything that day. Many protesters were recorded saying that the Capitol building belonged to the people, not to the people working in it on behalf of the people. They are right. But even if we accept the notion that those who entered the building were trespassing, the massive crackdown on free speech which immediately followed the events at the Capitol is a clear sign that "democracy" did not win that day. More about that later.
So who won?
Well, look who is celebrating and who is now demanding that punitive and even repressive measures be taken against Trump supporters:here and here ) The Russia-hating Lobby Antifa/BLM/etc The many freaks of nature leading various "minorities" Big Tech megacorporations a la Google and Amazon
The list is longer, of course, and it includes pretty much all the folks afflicted with the now famous Trump Derangement Syndrome (TDS).
Our list looks like a cocktail of very different actors, but is that really the case?
I submit that if we look closely at this list of possible "winners" we can quickly see that we are dealing with a single social category /group whose "diversity" is only apparent. Here is what all these groups have in common:They are numerically small, definitely a minority They are very wealthy They are very close to the real centers of power They share the same narcissistic (Neocon) ideology of self-worship They are driven by the same hate-based ideology of revenge They don't care about the people of the USA They want to dismantle the US Constitutional order
On the basis of these common characteristics, I believe that we can speak about a social class united by a common ideology .
Now, of course, in the plutocratic oligarchy (which the United States in reality is), the notion of "class" has been declared heretical and it has been replaced by identity politics – the best way for a ruling class to (a) hide behind a fake illusion of pluralism and (b) to divide the people and rule over them.
I have already written about what I consider to be a US version of the Soviet Nomenklatura , a special ruling class which was official in the (comparatively much more honest) Soviet system but which is always hidden from sight by the rulers of the United States.
The actual word we use are not that important: Nomenklatura , class, caste, establishment, powers that be, deep state, etc. – they all approximate the reality of a small gang of self-declared "elites" (as opposed to the "deplorables") ruling with total impunity and no checks and balances mitigating their de facto dictatorship. Some well-intentioned people began speaking about the "1%" – which is not bad, even if the actual figure is even smaller than just one percent. Others used "Wall Street" (as in the "occupy WS" movement), again – not a bad attempt to describe the problem. Whatever the terms you chose, what is certain is that this entity has what Marx would call a " class consciousness " which produces a single " class ideology " characterized by an extremely strong sense of "us versus them" .
By the way, while I disagree with any notion that the US Nomenklatura is Marxist or Socialist in any way, I very much agree that these "elites" are displaying an ideological zeal very similar to what Trotskysts or Nazis typically exhibit, especially when confronted with the "deplorables" or, like FoxNews says, the "mob" (the Polish word " bydło " – cattle – very accurately renders this contempt for the masses).
In fact, they see us all as their "class enemy" . And they are quite correct, by the way.
Their ideology is messianic, racist, violent and hate filled while the members of this US Nomenklatura see themselves as the cream of the crop, the "chosen people", whose "destiny" is to rule over the "dark and primitive" "mob".
This contempt for the "mob" is something which self-described "liberals" always try to conceal, but which always comes out, be it in 1917 Russia or in 2021 USA. There is a weird logic to this, by the way. It goes something like this: " we are clearly superior to the plebes, yet these plebes seem to reject that notion, these plebes are therefore a "dark mob" which absolutely needs to be strictly ruled by us ". The underlying assumption is that plebes are dangerous, they can always riot and threaten "us". Hence the need for a police state. QED.
We all remember how the Clinton gang was mega-super-sure that Hillary would easily defeat Trump. And just to make darn sure that the US "plebes" don't do anything stupid, the US legacy corporate ziomedia engaged in probably the most hysterical candidate bashing propaganda operation in history only to find out that the "deplorables" did not vote as they were told to, they voted for "Trump The New Hitler" instead.
What a truly unforgivable affront of these serfs against the masters which God, or Manifest Destiny, placed above them!
And just as their pseudo-liberal colleagues from the past, the US liberals decided that this vote was a slap in their face which, of course, is quite correct (I still believe that most votes for Trump where not votes for Trump, but votes against Hillary); it was, so to speak, a gigantic "f**k you!" from the revolting serfs against their masters. And class consciousness told the US Nomenklatura that this was an anti-masters pogrom , a US " Jacquerie " if you wish. This "revolt of the serfs" had to be put down, immediately, and it was: Trump caved to the Neocons in less than a month (when he betrayed General Flynn) and ever since the US Nomenklatura has been using Trump as a disposable President who would do all the crazy nonsense imaginable to please Israel, and who would then be disposed off. And yet it is now quite clear that the US "deplorables" voted for the "wrong" candidate again! Hence the need for a (very poorly concealed) "election steal" followed by a "test of loyalty" (you better side with us, or else ) which eventually resulted in the situation we have today.
What is that situation exactly?
Simply put, this time the US Nomenklatura has truly achieved total power. Not only do they control all three of the official branches of government, they now also fully control the 4th one, the "media space", courtesy of the US tech giants which now are openly silencing anybody who disagrees with the One And Only Official Truth As Represented By The Propaganda Outlets. This is the very first time in recent US history that a small cabal of "deep insiders" have achieved such total control of all the real instruments of power. The bad news is that they know that they are a small minority and they realize that they need to act fast to secure their hold on power. But for that they needed a pretext.
It is hardly surprising that after successfully pulling off the 9/11 false flag operation, the US Nomenklatura had no problems whatsoever pulling off the "Capitol" false flag.
Think about it: the legally organized and scheduled protest of Trump supporters was announced at least a week before it had to take place. How hard was it for those in charge of security to make sure that the protesters stay in one specific location? At the very least, those in charge of security could have done what Lukashenko eventually did in Mink: place military and police forces around all the important symbolic buildings and monuments and say "you are welcome to protest, but don't even think of trying to take over any government property" (that approach worked much better than beating up protesters, which Lukashenko initially had tried). Yet what we saw was the exact opposite: in DC protesters were invited across police lines by cops. Not only that, but even those protesters which did enter the Capitol were, apparently, not violent enough, so it had to be one of the cops to shoot an unarmed and clearly non-dangerous woman, thereby providing the "sacrificial victim" needed to justify the hysterics about "violence" and "rule of law".
And the worst part is that it worked, even Trump ended up condemning the "violence" and denouncing those who, according to Trump, did not represent the people.
The hard truth is much simpler: the "stop the steal" protestors did not commit any real violence! Yes, they broke some furniture, had some fights with cops (who initially were inviting people in, only to then violently turn against them with batons, pepper sprays and flash-bang grenades). Some reports say that one cop was hit by a fire extinguisher. If true, that would be a case of assault with a deadly weapon (under US law any object capable of being used to kill can be considered a deadly weapon when used for that purpose). But considering the nonstop hysteria about guns, the NRA and "armed militias", this was clearly not a planned murder. Finally, a few people died, apparently from natural causes, possibly made worse by the people trampling over each other. In other words, the Trump supporters did not kill anybody deliberately, at most they can be accused of creating the circumstances which resulted in manslaughter. That was not murder. Not even close. Want to see what a planned murder looks like? Just look at the footage of the Ashli Babbitt murder by some kind of armed official. That is real murder, and it was committed by a armed official. So which side is most guilty of violating laws and regulations?
Furthermore, no moral value can be respected unless it is universally and equally applied. Which, considering that the US deep state has engaged in a full year of wanton mass violence against hundreds of innocent US citizens makes it unbelievably hypocritical for the US liberals to denounce "the mob" now. Frankly, the way I see it, all the US liberals should now "take a knee" before the pro-Trump protestors and declare that this was a "mostly peaceful" event which, objectively speaking, it was .
Won't happen. I know.
What will happen next is going to be a vicious crackdown on free speech in all its forms . In fact, and just to use a Marxist notion, what comes next is class warfare .
We have all seen Pelosi and the rest of them demanding that Trump either be removed by Pence and the Cabinet (25th A.), or they will unleash another impeachment. First, if impeached, Trump won't be able to run in 2024 (which the liberals fully realize is a major risk for them). But even more important, is to humiliate him, make him pay, show him once and for all "who is boss"! These people thrive on revenge and victory is never enough to appease them, they simply hate anybody who dares oppose them and they want to make an example of any and every serf who dares to disobey them. That is why they always send "messages", no matter how inchoate: they want to bully all the deplorables on the planet into total subservience.
But they won't stop with just Trump. Oh no! They will also go after all those serfs who dared defy this Nomenklatura and who objected to the wholesale repudiation of the US Constitution. For example, in a truly Orwellian move, the NY State Bar now wants to disbar Giuliani for acting as Trump's lawyer (not a joke, check here ). Which, considering that Trump already lost several lawyers to such tactics should not come as a surprise to anybody: apparently, in the "new 2021 Woke-USA", some are more entitled to legal representation than others.
Don't expect the ACLU to protest, by the way – equal protection under the law is not a topic of interest to them. Here are a few screenshots take off their website , so see for yourself.
Clearly, the priority for the folks at the ACLU is to destroy Trump and anybody daring to take up his defense.
One one hand, this is truly an absolute disaster, because when the US ruling Nomenklatura agrees to drop any past pretenses of objectivity, or even decency, things will definitely get ugly. On the other hand, however, this immense "coming out" of the US Nomenklatura is, of course, unsustainable (just look at history, every time these folks thought that they had crushed the "plebes", the latter ended up rising and showing their supposed "masters" to the door; this will happen here too).
Last, but not least, let's keep another crucial thing in mind: even if you absolutely hate Trump, you really should realize that it is not just "the vote" which was stolen, it was the entire US Constitutional order . While we often focus on the SCOTUS, we should not remember the many lower courts which showed a total absence of courage or dignity and which caved in to the hysterical demands of the US Nomenklatura . It is impossible to have a country under the rule of law when the courts shy away from their obligation to uphold the said rule of law and, instead, place political expediency above the letter and spirit of the law.
Furthermore, when concepts such as "legal" and "illegal" lose any objective meaning, how can any action be considered illegal or punishable?
Here is, just as an example, the Oath of Office taken by all Supreme Court Justices: (emphasis added)
"I, [NAME], do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will administer justice without respect to persons, and do equal right to the poor and to the rich , and that I will faithfully and impartially discharge and perform all the duties incumbent upon me as [TITLE] under the Constitution and laws of the United States. So help me God."
And this is what each member of the US Armed Forces swears: (emphasis added)
"I, (state name of enlistee), do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic ; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; and that I will obey the orders of the President of the United States and the orders of the officers appointed over me, according to regulations and the Uniform Code of Military Justice. (So help me God)."
It does not take a genius to figure out that the SCOTUS is now in the hands of a small cabal of people who clearly are "domestic enemies" of the US Constitution.
Finally, here is what the Preamble to the Declaration of Independence states: (emphasis added)
"We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.–That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed,–That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it , and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security."
I don't think that there is any need to further beat this dead horse and I will simply summarize it as so:
The regime which will soon replace the Trump Administration is an illegal occupation government, with strong ties to foreign interests (and I don't mean China or Russia here!), which all those who served in the US military have taken an oath to oppose; this is precisely the kind of occupation regime which the Founding Fathers foresaw in their Declaration of Independence . Furthermore, the rule of law has clearly collapsed, at least on the federal level, this should give the states more freedom of movement to resist the decrees of this new regime (at least those states still willing and able to resist, I think of TX and FL here). The leaders of this US Nomenklatura understand this, at least on some level, and we should expect no decency from them; neither should we expect any mercy. Revenge is what fuels these ideology- and hate-filled people who loathe and fear all the rest of humanity because nobody is willing to worship them as our "lords and masters ". But this is also the beginning of their end.
Conclusion: now we are all Palestinians!
True, no "mob" won on the Capitol, unless we refer to the (disgraced, hated and useless) Congress as "the mob". And, of course, neither did "the people" or the protesters. The only real winner in this entire operation was the US deep state and the US Nomenklatura . But they did not win any war, only the opening battle of a war which will be much longer than what they imagine in their ignorance.
I have said it many times, Trump really destroyed the USA externally, in terms of world politics. The Dems have done the same thing, only internally. For example, Trump is the one who most arrogantly ignored the rule of law in international affairs, but it was the Dems who destroyed the rule of law inside the USA. It was Trump who with his antics and narcissistic threats urbi et orbi who destroyed any credibility left for the USA as a country (or even of the the AngloZionist Empire as a whole), but it was the Dems who really decided to sabotage the very political system which allowed them to seize power in the first place.
What comes next is the illegal rule of an illegitimate regime which came to power by violence (BLM, Antifa, Capitol false flag). This will be a Soviet-style gerontocracy with senile figureheads pretending to be in power (think Biden vs Chernenko here). Looking at the old, Obama-era, names which are circulated now for future Cabinet positions, we can bet on two things: the new rulers will be as evil as they will be grossly incompetent, mostly due to their crass lack of education (even Nuland and Psaki are back, it appears!). The Biden admin will be similar to the rule of Kerensky in "democratic" Russia: chaos, violence, lots and lots of speeches and total social and economic chaos. The next crucial, and even frightening, question now is: what will replace this US version of a Kerensky regime?
It is way too early to reply to this question, but we should at least begin to think about it, lest we be completely caught off guard.
But until then, "domestic terrorism" will, once again, become the boogeyman we will be told to fear. And, as all good boys and girls know, the best way to deal with such a horrible "domestic terrorism" threat is to dismantle the First and Second Amendments of the Constitution. Having corrupt kangaroo courts on all levels, from the small claims level to the Supreme court, will greatly help in this endeavor. Of course, there will be resistance from the deplorables who still love their country and their Constitution.
But no matter how long this takes (might be decades) and how violent this confrontation becomes (and, it will, if only because the regime vitally needs more false flags to survive!), what will happen with this occupation regime is what happened to all of them throughout history (could that be the reason why history is not taught anymore?).
As the Russian poet and bard, Vladimir Vissotski, wrote " it is impossible to trample upon souls with boots " (сапогами не вытоптать душу). Now we are all Palestinians. And we, like they, will win!
obwandiyag , says: January 12, 2021 at 3:36 am GMT • 1.0 days agoanonymous  Disclaimer , says: January 12, 2021 at 5:11 am GMT • 23.1 hours ago
Read this again, boneheads:
"Americans have been brainwashed into calling things they don't like, or don't understand, as "Socialist" or even "Marxist". The sad reality is that most Americans sincerely believe that Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez or Bernie Sanders are "socialists", and when they see modern movies ridiculously filled with "minorities" and gender fluid freaks – this is a case of "cultural Marxism" (a totally meaningless term, by the way!). This is all utter nonsense, neither Marxism nor Socialism have anything to do with BLM, Antifa, Nancy Pelosi or Chuck Schumer (in fact, Marxism places a premium on real law and order!)."Faihtful , says: January 12, 2021 at 5:28 am GMT • 22.8 hours ago
"class" has been declared heretical and it has been replaced by identity politics – the best way for a ruling class to (a) hide behind a fake illusion of pluralism and (b) to divide the people and rule over them
It's a neat bait and switch scheme, identity being substituted for class. Billionaires can now be hailed as people's champions by instituting 'gender-fluid' toilets and forcing their peons to kneel. Who knows how much force they'll be willing to use against the deplorables but probably it would know no limit. The shock and awe unleashed against foreign countries could now be instituted domestically with things like the Phoenix Program being tried here, among other things. Anything but relinquish power.
The old war-lovers are coming back in. Although he was considered belligerent the new regime will be worse. War is probably part of the future agenda. Solidifying it's grip upon the domestic population may be the precursor to embarking upon an unpopular and certain to be costly war against Iran or perhaps even some clash with Russia.Old Man Turtle , says: January 12, 2021 at 5:40 am GMT • 22.6 hours ago
The mob never wins. It is always led by the nose by well organised agents provocateur. See Epoch time video:
https://www.bitchute.com/embed/FrE27FTf11Q/Mefobills , says: January 12, 2021 at 4:25 pm GMT • 11.9 hours ago
From the I Ching: "Large ambitions coupled with meager talent will seldom escape disaster."
The fervid machinations of the current crop of "self"-glorifying wannabes will not, as The Saker reminds us here, be any exception to the rule, either. They're hardly the first bunch of feckless opportunists to take a run at "full spectrum dominance" .aiming to trap Life Herownself within the suffocating CONfines of their own little nut'shell.
The rampant insanity symptomatic of their virulent "self"-sickness, as it runs its inevitable course, looks like being somewhat more than usually trying for the rest of us, though .given all the electro-mechanical and institutional enhancement available to them, for intensifying the degenerative effects of their folly. At the same time, our best response will be just what we all know is always organically and in all Ways imperative for our Kind, anyhow. All our precious attention is best devoted to taking care of the Earth and each other. Our unconditional affection is best lavished on this Living Creation, all our Relations, and The Great Spirit whose gift it is.Curmudgeon , says: January 12, 2021 at 5:04 pm GMT • 11.2 hours ago
Nomenklatura is a bad analogy.
It is an Oligarchy of bond holders. I'm using the word bond as an stand-in for debt instruments, or any sort of claim on productivity. Bond/Bondage/Debt are all closely related concepts.
The entire Western World is inter-connected double-entry balance sheets.
One side of the balance sheet is "assets" and the other is "liabilities." One person's liability is another persons asset.
It is best to view the western world as a balance sheet, especially as private bank credit is the dominant money type of the west. Private banking and debt spreading has metastasized like a cancer, and is now consuming the host. Debt instruments and finance paper are being serviced in the finance sector with QE and 'CARES' act shenanigan's, which pays these finance "assets."
If you want to call the bond holders in finance and elsewhere as a nomenklatura, go ahead – but it obscures reality. These people are a class, a class of usurers, who are "taking" wealth in sordid ways by gaming the system.
All through history, plutocracy has arisen out of the population because debts were not annulled, or land was enclosed.
Oligarchs of various types are harvesting the world through various means, including the growth of debt claims. These claims grow exponentially, and outside of nature's ability to pay. The derivative bubble wants to be paid. What cannot go on, will not.
The balance sheet is not really balanced, one side (the debt instrument holder) is making exponential claims on debtors.
Moritz Hinsch from Berlin collected what Socrates (470-399 BC) and other Athenians wrote about debt, and the conference's organizer, Prof. John Weisweiler, presented the new view of late imperial Rome as being still a long way from outright serfdom. The 99 Percent were squeezed, but "the economy" grew – in a way that concentrated growth in the hands of the One Percent . In due course this bred popular resentment that spread in the form of debtor revolts, not only in the Roman Empire but that of Iran as well, leading to religious reforms to limit the charging of interest and self-indulgent greed in general.
By now Nazi references are getting thread-bare. We actually need to examine how the national socialists operated because their situation is analogous to today.
I very much agree that these "elites" are displaying an ideological zeal very similar to what Trotskysts or Nazis typically exhibit
National Socialism arose as a reaction to finance capitalism's excesses. The very things we are seeing today, were present in Weimar Germany. The country was being bought up, and the people were being denied their birthright. Self-indulgent greed of an arising Oligarchy was smashed by the National Socialists to then re-balance German civilization.
Nazi zeal restoring civilizational balance is quite something different than leftist bolshevism.@BiffMefobills , says: January 12, 2021 at 5:47 pm GMT • 10.5 hours ago
I have, for some time, been mis-naming the Nomenklatura as the Politburo, with the commune being the many tentacled international banking cartel. It's the same crowd that funded the original Bolsheviks.
IMO they are only "Neo" by virtue of the old ones having died, but I'm not going to split hairs. We all know it is those whose loyalty is to a shitty little country on the Mediterranean.@Anonymous ties extract, which makes politicians whores for their donor class. The donor class is the "holders of debt instruments" as I explained earlier. Or, they can be part of the military industrial complex, to then whore for more taxpayer dollars. In all cases it is for self aggrandizement. By the same reasoning, press-titutes are whores for their paymasters.
The easy money is taken in by usury or other sordid schemes; then donated/recycled into politicians, to then keep the game going. Average laboring people don't have this surplus wealth to donate.
Jan 10, 2021 | www.moonofalabama.org
Down South , Jan 10 2021 14:43 utc | 1"It's the height of hypocrisy for people who claim to be the champions of rights for women to deny the very biological existence of women," former Democratic presidential candidate Tulsi Gabbard, who just might be the last Democrat in DC with a functioning brain, told Tucker Carlson. "Instead of doing something that could actually help save people's lives, they are choosing instead to say 'You can't say mother or father.'"
I would ask for an 'Amen!' at this point, but, thanks to the clown work of lawmaker Emanuel Cleaver, who ended his congressional prayer opening of the very unsexy 117th Congress with the words "amen and awoman," even that simple gender-free term (which simply means 'so be it') is now tainted with foul political intrigue.
With these sort of unforgivable stunts under the belt, the Democrats should be very grateful they have perfected the art of 'winning' elections, otherwise they would probably vanish from the political landscape simply out of lack of doing anything positive for the nation. Indeed, the term 'Democrat' may be on the way out faster than that of 'male' and 'female.'
Oh Brother! Who Will Fight for Women's Rights Now That the Democrats Have Scrapped Gendered Terms?
Jan 09, 2021 | www.unz.com
Trinity , says: January 8, 2021 at 8:26 pm GMT • 3.0 hours ago@Kronos
Actually Tucker Carlson is one of those people and props to the guy for telling us working class Whites what "our elite white leader trash" have always thought about us. Of course Tucker won't dare mention the Jew, but at least he clues us in on white traitor trash that claim to be superior by avoid being seen near chain restaurants and hotels.
Of course we KNOW that the Jew and his elite shabbos goy only think of the common Black and Brown foot soldiers as pets as well, these cats are the real Supremacists. These (((elitists))) will dump the Black and Brown grunts for the Yellow ones, believe that as well.
Jan 06, 2021 | www.rt.com
US Representative Tulsi Gabbard (D-Hawaii) is calling out her party for pushing through a new code of conduct that essentially denies women exist by requiring gender-neutral language in Congressional rules.
"It's the height of hypocrisy for people who claim to be the champions of rights for women to deny the very biological existence of women," Gabbard said on Monday night in an interview with Fox News host Tucker Carlson.
New guidelines introduced by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Friday and passed Monday by Congress in a party-line vote endeavor to "honor all gender identities" by making all pronouns and references to familial relationships gender-neutral. For instance, "seamen" has been changed to "seafarers," and House rules have been scrubbed of such words as "father, mother, son, daughter, brother, sister.""Aunt" and "uncle" will be replaced by "parent's sibling." Lawmakers also must inculcate such words as "parent-in-law,""stepsibling" and "sibling's child" to replace "mother-in-law,""stepsister" and "niece.""He" or "she" references to House members are instead "such member,""delegate" or "resident commissioner."
"It's mind-blowing because it shows just how out of touch with reality and the struggles of everyday Americans people in Congress are," Gabbard said. "Also, their first act as this new Congress could have been to make sure that elderly Americans are able to get the COVID vaccine now , but instead of doing something that could actually help save people's lives, they're choosing instead to say, 'Well, you can't say mother of father in any of this congressional language.' It's astounding."Amid crises and pandemic, Pelosi chooses to focus on new Congress rules that ELIMINATE 'gendered terms'
Congress also has made permanent its Office of Diversity and now requires all committees to discuss in their oversight plans how they will address "inequities on the basis of race, color, ethnicity, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, disability, age or national origin." Committees also must "survey the diversity of witness panels at committee hearings to ensure we are hearing from diverse groups of experts as we craft legislation."
Gabbard has run afoul of Democratic Party orthodoxy repeatedly in the past two years, opposing the impeachment of President Donald Trump, speaking out against election fraud, opposing regime-change wars and blasting the controversial Netflix movie 'Cuties' as " child porn ." She embarrassed party favorite Kamala Harris, now vice president-elect, in a Democrat presidential debate in 2019, and the Iraq War veteran called former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton the " queen of warmongers " after Clinton suggested that she's a Russian asset.
Gabbard, who didn't seek a new term in Congress, was attacked as a "transphobe" and "bigot" after introducing a bill last month to limit participation in women's sports to biological females. The movement to "deny the existence of biological women – it defies common sense, it defies basic, established science, it just doesn't make any sense," she told Carlson on Monday.Tulsi Gabbard branded 'transphobe' after introducing bill to limit women's sport to biological females
"No wonder they called you a Russian spy," Carlson replied. "It's dangerous to have you in the Democratic Party. I'm sorry you're leaving [Congress]."
Republicans praised Gabbard's latest contradiction of Democrat talking points. "Can we please trade Mitt Romney for her?" one Twitter user asked. Brazilian entrepreneur Daniel Gonzalez called her "the best Democrat since JFK."
House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-California) was among the many Republicans who opposed Pelosi's rules changes. "This is stupid," he said. "Signed, a father, son and brother."
Nov 12, 2020 | www.unz.com
Paul Craig Roberts' Interview with the European magazine Zur Zeit ( In This Time ):
A few months ago it looked like the re-election of Trump was almost certain, but now there was a close race between Trump and Biden? What happen during the last months?
In the months before the election, the Democrats used the "Covid pandemic" to put in place voting by mail. The argument was used that people who safely go to supermarkets and restaurants could catch Covid if they stood in voting lines. Never before used on a large scale, voting by mail is subject to massive vote fraud.
There are many credible reports of organized vote fraud committed by Democrats. The only question is whether the Republican establishment will support challenging the documented fraud or whether Trump will be pressured to concede in order to protect the reputation of American Democracy.
For those influenced by a partisan media that is denying the massive fraud that occurred, here is an overview of the elements of the fraud and the legal remedies. https://www.unz.com/article/of-color-revolutions-foreign-and-domestic-the-first-72-hours/
It is difficult to know or to ensure that the ballots are actual ballots from registered voters. For example in the early hours of the morning of November 4 large ballot drops occurred in Michigan and Wisconsin that wiped out Trump's lead. State officials have reported that people not registered -- probably illegals -- were permitted to vote. Postal service workers have reported being ordered to backdate ballots that suddenly appeared in the middle of the night after the deadline. These techniques were used to erase Trump's substantial leads in the states of Michigan, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, and Georgia.
Digital technology has also made it easy to alter vote counts. US Air Force General Thomas McInerney is familiar with this technology. He says it was developed by the National Security Agency in order to interfere in foreign elections, but now is in the hands of the CIA and was used to defeat Trump. Trump is considered to be an enemy of the military/security complex because of his wish to normalize relations with Russia, thus taking away the enemy that justifies the CIA's budget and power.
People do not understand. They think an election has been held when in fact what has occurred is that massive vote fraud has been used to effect a revolution against red state white America. Leaders of the revolution, such as Democrat Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, are demanding a list of Trump supporters who are "to be held accountable." Calls are being made for the arrest of Tucker Carlson, the only mainstream journalist who supported President Trump.
In a recent column I wrote:
"Think what it means that the entirety of the US media, allegedly the 'watchdogs of democracy,' are openly involved in participating in the theft of a presidential election.
"Think what it means that a large number of Democrat public and election officials are openly involved in the theft of a presidential election.
"It means that the United States is split irredeemably. The hatred for white people that has been cultivated for many years, portraying white Americans as "systemic racists," together with the Democrats' lust for power and money, has destroyed national unity. The consequence will be the replacement of rules with force."
Mainstream media in Europe claim, that Trump had "divided" the United States. But isn`t it actually the other way around, that his opponents have divided the country?
As the German newspaper editor Udo Ulfkotte revealed in his book, Bought Journalism , the European and US media speak with one voice -- the voice of the CIA. The very profitable and powerful US military/security complex needs foreign enemies. Russiagate was a CIA/FBI successful effort to block Trump from reducing tensions with Russia. In 1961 in his last address to the American people President Dwight Eisenhower warned that the growing power of the military/industrial complex was a threat to American democracy. We ignored his warning and now have security agencies more powerful than the President.
The military/security complex favors the disunity that the Democrat Party and media have fostered with their ideology of Identity Politics. Identity politics replaced Marxist class war with race and gender war. White people, and especially white heterosexual males, are the new oppressor class. This ideology causes race and gender disunity and prevents any unified opposition to the security agencies ability to impose its agendas by controlling explanations. Opposition to Trump cemented the alliance between Democrats, media, and the Deep State.
It is possible that the courts will decide who will be sworn into office at January 20, 2021. Do you except a phase of uncertainty or even a constitutional crisis?
There is no doubt that numerous irregularities indicate that the election was stolen and that the ground was well laid in advance. Trump intends to challenge the obvious theft. However, his challenges will be rejected in Democrat ruled states, as they were part of the theft and will not indict themselves. This means Trump and his attorneys will have to have constitutional grounds for taking their cases to the federal Supreme Court. The Republicans have a majority on the Court, but the Court is not always partisan.
Republicans tend to be more patriotic than Democrats, who denounce America as racist, fascist, sexist, imperialist. This patriotism makes Republicans impotent when it comes to political warfare that could adversely affect America's reputation. The inclination of Republicans is for Trump to protect America's reputation by conceding the election. Republicans fear the impact on America's reputation of having it revealed that America's other major party plotted to steal a presidental election.
Red state Americans, on the other hand, have no such fear. They understand that they are the targets of the Democrats, having been defined by Democrats as "racist white supremacist Trump deplorables."
The introduction of a report of the Heritage Foundation states that "the United States has a long and unfortunate history of election fraud". Are the 2020 presidential elections another inglorious chapter in this long history?
This time the fraud is not local as in the past. It is the result of a well organized national effort to get rid of a president that the Establishment does not accept.
Somehow you get the impression that in the USA – as in many European countries democracy is just a facade – or am I wrong?
You are correct. Trump is the first non-establishment president who became President without being vetted by the Establishment since Ronald Reagan. Trump was able to be elected only because the Establishment thought he had no chance and took no measures to prevent his election. A number of studies have concluded that in the US the people, despite democracy and voting, have zero input into public policy.
Democracy cannot work in America because the money of the elite prevails. American democracy is organized in order to prevent the people from having a voice. A political campaign is expensive. The money for candidates comes from interest groups, such as defense contractors, Wall Street, the pharmaceutical industry, the Israel Lobby. Consequently, the winning candidate is indebted to his funders, and these are the people whom he serves.
European mainstream media are portraying Biden as a luminous figure. Should Biden become president, what can be expected in terms of foreign and security policy, especially in regard to China, Russia and the Middle East? I mean, the deep state and the military-industrial complex remain surely nearly unchanged.
Biden will be a puppet, one unlikely to be long in office. His obvious mental confusion will be used either to rule through him or to remove him on grounds of mental incompetence. No one wants the nuclear button in the hands of a president who doesn't know which day of the week it is or where he is.
The military/security complex needs enemies for its power and profit and will be certain to retain the list of desirable foreign enemies -- Russia, Iran, China, and any independent-inclined country in Latin America. Being at war is also a way of distracting the people of the war against their liberties.
What the military/security complex might not appreciate is that among its Democrat allies there are some, such as Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who are ideological revolutionaries. Having demonized red state America and got rid of Trump (assuming the electoral fraud is not overturned by the courts), Ocasio-Cortez and her allies intend to revolutionize the Democrat Party and make it a non-establishment force. In her mind white people are the Establishment, which we already see from her demands for a list of Trump supporters to be punished.
I think I'm not wrong in assuming that a Biden-presidency would mean more identity politics, more political correctness etc. for the USA. How do you see this?
Identity politics turns races and genders against one another. As white people -- "systemic racists" -- are defined as the oppressor class, white people are not protected from hate speech and hate crimes. Anything can be said or done to a white American and it is not considered politically incorrect.
With Trump and his supporters demonized, under Democrat rule the transition of white Americans into second or third class citizens will be completed.
How do you access Trump's first term in office? Where was he successful and where he failed?
Trump spent his entire term in office fighting off fake accusations -- Russiagate, Impeachgate, failure to bomb Russia for paying Taliban to kill American occupiers of Afghanistan, causing Covid by not wearing a mask, and so on and on.
That Trump survived all the false charges shows that he is a real person, a powerful character. Who else could have survived what Trump has been subjected to by the Establishment and their media prostitutes. In the United States the media is known as "presstitutes" -- press prostitutes. That is what Udo Ulfkotte says they are in Europe. As a former Wall Street Journal editor, I say with complete confidence that there is no one in the American media today I would have hired. The total absence of integrity in the Western media is sufficient indication that the West is doomed.
Twodees Partain , says: November 12, 2020 at 7:21 pm GMT • 1.0 days agoAnn Nonny Mouse , says: Website November 12, 2020 at 7:42 pm GMT • 1.0 days ago
Never before used on a large scale, voting by mail is subject to massive vote fraud.
I would take it a little further and say that voting by mail is a method of vote fraud. The supposed safeguards are easily circumvented, as some whistleblowers have illustrated with ballots being brought forth in large numbers after election day without postmarks and postal workers being ordered to stamp them with acceptable postmarks.
It really seems to me that there would be no democrat majorities in Congress or in so many state legislatures without vote fraud.endthefed , says: November 12, 2020 at 7:53 pm GMT • 24.0 hours ago
So fraud is needed to protect the reputation of American democracy. Only fraud can! Thanks, PCR!@NotsofastMarkinLA , says: November 12, 2020 at 9:37 pm GMT • 22.2 hours ago
Eisenhower is always lauded for his MIC warning. Frankly he ticks me off. Thanks for the warning AFTER you were in some position to mitigate.Curmudgeon , says: November 12, 2020 at 9:43 pm GMT • 22.1 hours ago
Worse than the fraud available with vote by mail is the voting of people normally who don't bother to vote. Think of how stupid and uninformed that average American voter is. Now realize how much more stupid and uninformed the non-voter is, only now he votes.
However, the most likely source of fraud that is hard to detect, is ballot harvesting. This should be outlawed as it violates the idea of a secret ballot. Somebody comes to the home of a disinterested voter and makes sure he votes (of course they will never admit to hounding the person) and "helps" them with the ballot. If the voter cannot be cajoled into voting the correct way, you merely throw his ballot in the trash.Beavertales , says: November 12, 2020 at 10:21 pm GMT • 21.5 hours ago
I have little doubt that there have been massive "irregularities", particularly in the so-called battleground states, that are at play in "stealing" the election.
...The favourite phrase these days is "no evidence of wide spread voter fraud". Let's break that down. Only 6 states have been challenged for vote fraud. In the big scheme of things, 6 states is not wide spread, even if there is massive vote fraud within those 6 states. That the vote fraud is not widespread, implies that some vote fraud is acceptable, and that the listener should ignore it. Last and most importantly, in the narrowest of legalistic terms, testimony or affidavits are not evidence. Testimony and affidavits become evidence when supported by physical evidence. An affidavit with a photograph demonstrating the statement would be evidence.
Another phrase is something like "election officials say they have seen no evidence of voter fraud". I have yet to hear a reporter challenge the "seen no evidence of " part of the statement, regardless of the subject, by asking if the speaker had looked for any evidence. They won't, because they know damn well no one has.
That is how the liars operate. Not so different from Rumsfeld's "plausible deniability".Franz , says: November 12, 2020 at 10:54 pm GMT • 21.0 hours ago
Living in an urban setting I often had to visit apartment buildings. Without fail, there was always a pile of undeliverable mail in the lobby under the mailboxes.
The envelopes were mostly addressed to people who had moved out or died. If ballots were sent to these people based on incorrect voter rolls, then these too would likely have been left sitting on the floor or on a ledge for anyone to take.
It doesn't take a leap of faith to know what a Trump-hating leftist would do when no one is looking. This moral hazard was intentionally created by Dems, who know that urban dwellers are transient and lean left politically.@endthefedendthefed , says: November 12, 2020 at 11:08 pm GMT • 20.7 hours ago
Eisenhower is always lauded for his MIC warning. Frankly he ticks me off. Thanks for the warning AFTER you were in some position to mitigate.
Ike's a mystery. Why did he NOT question Harry Truman's commitments to NATO, the UN, and all that rubbish? Ike was a WWII guy. He knew Americans hated the UN in 1953 as much as they hated the League of Nations after WWI. But he let it all slide and get bigger.
His farewell address was just flapdoodle; it wasn't really dredged up till the 70s. Eisenhower spent eight years spreading tripwires and mines and then said "Watch out." Thanks buddy.@BragadociousNotsofast , says: November 12, 2020 at 11:28 pm GMT • 20.4 hours ago
Well, agree on your points however, on the other side of the ledger, he never understood the stupidity of the Korean war (that he could have ended) and majorly up-ramped CIA activities in all manner of regime change (bay of pigs anyone?). Almost a direct path to our foreign policy now (and now domestic policy)@BragadociousLouis Hissink , says: November 13, 2020 at 5:30 am GMT • 14.4 hours ago
He did deploy the military assistance advisory group to Vietnam in 1955. This is considered the beginning of U.S. involvement in the war. This allowed the French to moonwalk out the back door leaving us holding the bag. In fairness this was Johnson's war however. Eisenhower did cut the military budget as a peace dividend to fund interstate system and other domestic projects. In today political spectrum he would be considered a flaming liberal.anonymous  Disclaimer , says: November 13, 2020 at 5:35 am GMT • 14.3 hours ago
As the German newspaper editor Udo Ulfkotte revealed in his book, Bought Journalism, the European and US media speak with one voice -- the voice of the CIA. The very profitable and powerful US military/security complex needs foreign enemies.
What intrigues me is the ultimate political goal of the UN and the WEF when they anticipate a single global government centered at the UN and the absence of nation-states.
So what is the MIC going to do when there are no existential threats of competing nation-states? Or will the MIC re-engineer religious wars between the various religious groups, secular and theological? It seems the aspirations of the WEF and its fellow travellers preclude the occurrence of future armed conflicts.
Of course one needs capitalistic economies to produce the ordnance and materiels for the engineered social factions to war with each other. Yet if the Greens have their way, there will be no mining period.
More likely is the possibility that none of them actually understand what they are doing. As Nassim Taleb is alleged to have remarked, 99% of humans are stupid.The Real World , says: November 13, 2020 at 5:44 am GMT • 14.1 hours ago
The total absence of integrity in the Western media is sufficient indication that the West is doomed.
It's because Western media is completely under the control of Jews, the world's foremost End Justifies Means people. The Fourth Estate has become the world's most powerful Bully Pulpit. There are still a few good ones though, brave souls they are: Kim Strassel of WSJ, Daniel Larison of The American Conservative , Neil Munro of Breitbart.
The rest are more or less lying scums, including everyone on NYTimes, WSJ, CNN, ABC, NBC, CBS, Fox, MSNBC, Fox News (minus Tucker Carlson and Maria Bartiromo), The Economist , and let's not forget the new media: Google, Facebook, Twitter. The world would be a much better place without any of them.@Beavertales -- with either vote flipping on machines or having the totals that paper ballot scanners tabulate adjust via a pre-programmed algorithm. Many elections have already been stolen this way.Alfred , says: November 13, 2020 at 5:51 am GMT • 14.0 hours ago
But, in the vein of what you mention is this fascinating article. I urge everyone to read it. He spills the beans in detail. https://nypost.com/2020/08/29/political-insider-explains-voter-fraud-with-mail-in-ballots/
Imagine hundreds of those people around the country over decades. There must be scads of illegitimate office holders all over. It's horrendousPriss Factor , says: Website November 13, 2020 at 5:56 am GMT • 13.9 hours ago
Nancy Pelosi claims that Biden's victory gives the Democrats a "MANDATE" to alter the economy as they see fit with 50.5%. This proves that Biden will NOT represent everyone – only the left! I have warned that this has been their agenda from day one. Now, three whistleblowers from the Democratic software company Dominion Voting Systems, alleging that the company's software stole 38 million votes from Trump. There are people claiming that Dominion Voting Systems is linked to Soros, Dianae Finesteing, Clintons, and Pelosi's husband. I cannot verify any of these allegations so far.
We are at the Rubicon. Civil War is on the other side. There should NEVER be this type of drastic change to the economy from Capitalism to Marxism on 50.5% of the popular vote. NOBODY should be able to restructure the government and the economy on less than 2/3rds of the majority. That would be a mandate. Trying to change everything with a claim of 50.5% of the vote will only signal, like the Dread Scot decision, that there is no solution by rule of law. This is the end of civilization and it will turn ugly from here because there is no middle ground anymore. As I have warned, historically the left will never tolerate opposition.
Democrats Claim Mandate to Alter the Economy & 3 Whistleblowers from Software Company Allege they stole 38 million votes from Trump | Armstrong EconomicsJust another serf , says: November 13, 2020 at 6:18 am GMT • 13.6 hours ago
DEMOCRATS TURN MENACING AS FRAUD FALLS APART
https://www.bitchute.com/embed/WMA7DXLDgzBy/animalogic , says: November 13, 2020 at 6:35 am GMT • 13.3 hours ago
Yes, the theft is blatant. But what are you, us, going to do about it? We really can't do much as the Office of the President Elect requires us to wear masks. For our safety.@CurmudgeonAnon  Disclaimer , says: November 13, 2020 at 6:55 am GMT • 12.9 hours ago
"in the narrowest of legalistic terms, testimony or affidavits are not evidence. Testimony and affidavits become evidence when supported by physical evidence. " Correct – but they also can become evidence by verbal testimony. ie "I saw the defendant hit the victim with a rock"chet roman , says: November 13, 2020 at 7:05 am GMT • 12.8 hours ago
Not only have they stolen the election but when Joe Biden and other democrats claim that President Trump caused the deaths of hundreds of thousands of Americans because of his handling of Covid 19, they are in sane. No world leader could stop the spread of this respiratory virus. However, Joe Biden and democrats have caused the deaths of hundreds of white people, while whipping up weak minded people to kill many whites. Biden and the democrats are criminals. Any one who is white, man or woman, that supports the democratic party is enabling a criminal organization to perpetrate violence on white people, including murder.Clay Alexander , says: November 13, 2020 at 7:18 am GMT • 12.6 hours ago
Since the article was from a German magazine it's understandable that there is no mention of "the one who shall not be named". No mention of the people behind the Lawfare group, the same people behind the impeachment, the same people providing financial and ideological support for the BLM/Antifa, the same people that own the media that spewed lies for 5 years and censored any mention of the Biden family corruption, no mention of the people behind this Color Revolution, the same people who promoted the mail in voting and those that managed the narrative for the media on election night to stop Trump's momentum.
For the public consumption the election will be described in vague terms, like this article, blaming special interests and institutions like the FBI, CIA and MIC without naming names as if an institution, not the oligarchs and chosen pulling the strings, are somehow Marxist, anti-white or anti-Christian.Priss Factor , says: Website November 13, 2020 at 7:24 am GMT • 12.5 hours ago
The interviewer quotes the Heritage Foundation does anyone even care what they say? The English Tavistock Institute by way of the CIA which the British molded from the OSS created programs for the Heritage Foundation as well as the Hoover Institute, MIT, Stanford University, Wharton, Rand etc. These "rightwing think tanks" were created to counter the CIA's "leftwing think tanks" at Columbia, Berkeley etc. Thank you British Intelligence.Thomasina , says: November 13, 2020 at 7:31 am GMT • 12.3 hours ago
Bloat the Vote: https://www.thedailybell.com/all-articles/news-analysis/2020-wisconsin-election-fraud/Biff , says: November 13, 2020 at 7:39 am GMT • 12.2 hours ago
Steve Bannon was just interviewing someone (can't remember his name). Apparently there are about 200 to 300 IT professionals/engineers working on these so-called "glitches" (not glitches at all) which mysteriously "disappeared" thousands of Trump votes. Then they'd dump phony Biden votes into the mix. These IT professionals are going to follow the trail.
I've also heard that Dominion Voting Systems played a big part in this scam by using algorithms. One Trump lawyer said that big revelations are coming.
We're going to have to be patient and just wait.
"The inclination of Republicans is for Trump to protect America's reputation by conceding the election."
I honestly think it's more like the old established Republicans (corporate bought) want Trump to lose because that is what their campaign donors want (Big Pharma, Wall Street, etc.) They are part of the elite, and the elite (both the Democrats AND Republicans) want Trump gone so they can continue their crony capitalist looting. They've got to appear like they're behind Trump, but I don't think they are. Of course, that's not all Republican representatives.
Sounds like they've been rigging elections for awhile now. I bet they just messed up with Hillary. I think that's why she was so upset. She had it, but they screwed up and didn't supply enough ballots.sally , says: November 13, 2020 at 7:45 am GMT • 12.1 hours ago
My conclusion is: They are probably going to get away with it.
My advice: Make them suffer.@KenH inventive creative new ways to deceive.. first it was election machines, then mail in votes. next it will be magic carpet voting. But the votes don't count, cause it is the electoral college that elects the President.Wizard of Oz , says: November 13, 2020 at 7:46 am GMT • 12.1 hours ago
Trump also lost a significant number who did not understand Trump was an Israeli at heart, they thought he was a uncoothed NYC red blooded American.
As far as white, black or pokadot color or any of the religions ganging up against Trump I don't think that happened, the fall out into statistically discoverable categories is just that, fall out, not those categories conspiring to vote or not vote one way or the other.Anonymous  Disclaimer , says: November 13, 2020 at 7:54 am GMT • 12.0 hours ago
PCR seems to have trouble seeing a difference between the counting of perfectly proper votes which Pres Trump's post office delivered late which may or may not be allowed by law which can be determined in court, and fraud like the dead voting or votes being forged.Wally , says: November 13, 2020 at 8:08 am GMT • 11.7 hours ago
The fraud is all so transparent but no one in the power elite seems to give a crap whether the public catches on or not these days. They know that the entire media which creates the false matrix of contrived "truth" that we all live in will back them to the hilt because they are actually just one more working part in the grand conspiracy. We all know that when "O'Brian" says 2 + 2 equals 5 we must all believe it, or at least say we do. We interface with "O'Brian's" minions on a daily basis but we don't know the ultimate identity of "O'Brian" (in the singular or multiple). Many guesses are made, but they hide that from us fairly well with the aid of their militaries and "intelligence" agencies (aka secret police in other times and places).@MarkinLA s://amgreatness.com/2020/11/09/on-electoral-fraud-in-2020/"> https://amgreatness.com/2020/11/09/on-electoral-fraud-in-2020/Biff , says: November 13, 2020 at 8:57 am GMT • 10.9 hours ago
– Why Did Six Battleground States with Democrat Governors (Except One) ALL Pause Counting on Election Night? And How Was This Coordinated?
https://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2020/11/six-battleground-states-democrat-governors-pause-counting-election-night-coordinated/?utm_source=Twitter&utm_campaign=websitesharingbuttonsVerymuchalive , says: November 13, 2020 at 9:48 am GMT • 10.1 hours ago
For example in the early hours of the morning of November 4 large ballot drops occurred in Michigan and Wisconsin that wiped out Trump's lead.
In a very similar vein, it is the same thing that happened to Bernie Sanders during the primary's. Joe was down and out, and Bernie was enjoying the lead and then "Bam!" Overnight Joe is back on top.
Well, fool me once,,,,,, .,and blah, blah whatever Bush said .@Stephen AllenSollipsist , says: November 13, 2020 at 10:17 am GMT • 9.6 hours ago
Dr Roberts has referenced in the interview a UR article that goes into considerable detail about the massive electoral fraud by the Democrats and their partners. You've obviously not bothered to read it.
You're like one of those MSM hacks who denies electoral fraud without making any attempt to look at the evidence.@Begemot And it's almost always a closer race than anyone would have guessed beforehand -- which I also find suspicious. How likely is it that the majority of presidential elections over the last century were decided by more or less even numbers of voters from each party, between more or less evenly matched candidates?James Speaks , says: November 13, 2020 at 10:40 am GMT • 9.2 hours ago
Really seems like they've perfected the art of putting on rigged political shows that you can't quite believe in, but don't have anything really solid to back up your suspicions. It's like the "no evidence of fraud" canard -- anything solid enough to show obvious manipulation is explained away as the exception, rather than the tip of a very deep iceberg@S MartiniLee , says: November 13, 2020 at 11:48 am GMT • 8.1 hours ago
Like the false accusations about Russia, delegitimizing the presidential election as fraud is turning out to be much ado about nothing.
Let's review. The Democrats perpetrated the phony 2016 Russian influence fraud, and now the Democrats are perpetrating the phony 2020 election victory.
The common elements are Democrats perpetrate fraud.
Do try to keep up.TomGregg , says: November 13, 2020 at 12:23 pm GMT • 7.5 hours ago
IMO this is a simple remedy to settle the election fraud mess or we will be arguing about this 20 years from now .from the American Thinker.
The candidates on the ballot must have an opportunity to have observers whom they choose to oversee the entire process so the candidates are satisfied that they won or lost a free and fair election.
That is not what happened in the 2020 election. That is the single most important and simple fact that needs to be understood and communicated. The 2020 election was not a free and fair election, because poll-watchers were not allowed to do their essential job. The 2020 election can still be a free and fair election with a clear winner, whoever that may be, but time is running out.
In every instance where poll-watchers were not allowed to observe the process, those votes must be recounted. They must be recounted with poll-watchers from both sides present. If there are votes that cannot be recounted because the envelops were discarded, those votes must be discarded. Put the blame for this on the officials who decided to count the votes in secret. Consider it a way to discourage secret vote counts in the future.
The pandemic has not been fearful enough to close liquor stores, and it in should not be used as excuse to remove the poll-watchers who are essential to a free and fair election. If we must have social distancing, then use cameras.
Certainly, there are other issues with the 2020 election. There may be problems with software, and there are issues like signature verification and dead people voting. Everything should be considered and examined, but no other issue should distract from the simple fact that both sides must be able to view the entire process. If one side is not allowed to view the vote-counting, then that side should be calling it a fraud. We should all be calling it a fraud.
Read more: https://www.americanthinker.com/articles/2020/11/the_simplest_most_important_issue_regarding_the_2020_election.html#ixzz6dfsChU00@AnonThe Spirit of Enoch Powell , says: November 13, 2020 at 1:02 pm GMT • 6.8 hours ago
https://www.youtube.com/embed/OyBNmecVtdU?feature=oembedRealist , says: November 13, 2020 at 1:04 pm GMT • 6.8 hours ago
...Trump had control of the Senate, the House and of course the Executive between his inauguration in January of 2017 and the Midterm Elections of 2018, a total time period of 1 year and 10 months. What did he do during this time? He deregulated financial services and passed corporate tax cuts.
At the end of the day, being emotionally invested in US elections is no different to being emotionally invested in Keeping up with the Kardashians , that is to say your life wouldn't be that different if your don't follow either.anon  Disclaimer , says: November 13, 2020 at 1:06 pm GMT • 6.8 hours ago
The Democrats Have Stolen the Presidential Election
The Deep State Has Stolen the Presidential Election. FIFY. But they have been in control for decades they just don't care who knows now. They are taking final steps to make their control impervious to attack.@Notsofast nd protect the actual elephant in the Oval Office: CIA.Priss Factor , says: Website November 13, 2020 at 1:31 pm GMT • 6.3 hours ago
Trumman did speak up one month after JFK was killed by the unmentionable "I" of M.(I).I.C.
This is the reason that the establishment latched on to the Eisenhowerian bon mot but entirely memory hole Trumman's far more explicit warning a freaking month after a sitting president is shot like a turkey in Dallas: it white washes CIA and NSC .MLK , says: November 13, 2020 at 1:32 pm GMT • 6.3 hours ago
Why are CIA goons like Anderson Pooper serving as journalists? CIA is a criminal organization that subverts other nations.
The place to begin, and it's mind-blowing when you think about it this way, is that nothing was resolved on election night. Not who will take the oath on January 20th. Nor which party will control the Senate. Nor even who will be Speaker and which party will control the House.
Suffice it to say, a still raging factional struggle has simply moved to a greater degree behind the curtain.
I noted this movie reference on another thread here:
If your father dies, you'll make the deal, Sonny.
-- "The Godfather"
My point being, you're foolish if you ascribe certainty as to outcome at this point.
Being rid of Trump has been as close to a dues ex machina for the establishment as imaginable since he took the oath. This ineluctable observation elicits no end of foot-stomping by those who assume it necessarily says anything positive about the man.
With every persistent revision of the script they wrote for him, all ending with his political demise at least, Trump has not just survived but grown stronger. While the Democrats turned our elections into something only seen in a third-world shit hole, Trump legitimately drew 71M votes from Americans.
That's a lot of air in the balloon. Believe me, filth like Russian mole Brennan may think everything is finished once they get rid of terrible, awful Trump, but those above his pay grade know better.
Like him or hate him, Trump is the only principal not wholly or largely discredited. He was saved from destruction during his first term by the Republican base moving to protect him. That was the import of his 90-95% approval among them, destroy him and you destroy the Republican Party.
Now, despite -- or perhaps, because of -- everything they've done, that base now includes a significant number of Democrats and independents. Trump is merely a vessel for an American majority attached to this constitutional republic thingie we've got going.
Don't get lost in the details. This isn't a puzzle you can solve by internet sleuthing. The plan they executed -- to steal sufficiently to make the outcome inevitable by the morning after the election at the latest -- failed. This was evident early on Election Day (e.g. fake water main breaks in Atlanta) and necessitated their playing their Fox/AZ card and shutting down the count at least until they had removed Republican monitors.
BannedHipster , says: Website November 13, 2020 at 2:57 pm GMT • 4.9 hours agoRurik , says: November 13, 2020 at 2:59 pm GMT • 4.9 hours ago
People need to stop falling for Republican bullshit.
The Republicans control:
1. The Senate
2. The Supreme Court with a 6 to 3 majority.
3. The majority of state governments by a huge margin:
"In 22 states, Republicans will hold unified control over the governor's office and both houses of the legislature, giving the party wide political latitude -- including in states like Florida and Georgia."
"Eleven states will have divided governments in 2021, unchanged from this year: Democratic governors will need to work with Republican legislators in eight states, and Republican governors will contend with Democratic lawmakers in three."
The Democrats have: Joe Biden, and a slim majority in the House of Representatives which they are almost certain to lose in two years.
What the Republicans are going to do is everything we hate, but they will pretend they were "forced" to do it by the Democrats – the Democrats being the minority party.
Amnesty? Democrats made us do it.
More immigration? Democrats made us do it.
The Republican party is the greater of two evils.Zarathustra , says: November 13, 2020 at 3:00 pm GMT • 4.9 hours ago
Who else could have survived what Trump has been subjected to by the Establishment and their media prostitutes. In the United States the media is known as "presstitutes" -- press prostitutes. That is what Udo Ulfkotte says they are in Europe.
Mr. Ulfkotte died of a "heart attack" in January, 2017
Rest in Peace Udo.Robert Dolan , says: November 13, 2020 at 3:26 pm GMT • 4.4 hours ago
Left and right.
(What you small brains do not understand is this.)
Democrats enabling the elite to invest in far east (lower wage costs, higher profits) did abandon the working class in America. Democrats by this act did throw away the working class as a dirty rug.
Democrats with their TPP exporting most of the production to far east would totally destroy working class in USA. Trump's first act was to cancel this insanity. Democrats are insanely delusional.
Democrats were left. Left is a party that supports the working people.
So here switch occurred. Democratic party now represent the elite, and Republicans now represent the working people.
(The irony of the fate)Robert Snefjella , says: November 13, 2020 at 3:30 pm GMT • 4.4 hours ago
https://www.bitchute.com/video/hxrVAGuE7Oo1/Agent76 , says: November 13, 2020 at 3:45 pm GMT • 4.1 hours ago
The headline for PCR's article is a prediction, not yet established, and incomplete.
There is an ongoing massive attempt to steal the Presidential election as well as to steal an unknown number of House and Senate seats, and who knows what else.
The 'game' is still on. Many tens of millions of citizens – actual total unknown but possibly in numbers unprecedented in American history – voted for Trump. Republican candidates for office generally had strong support, but again, the actual percentage of support is unknown but presumably larger than now 'recorded'.
There are also the many millions who ardently supported Trump, know that Biden is illegitimate, deeply corrupt, and the precursor to perils unknown. Their determination and backbone and intelligence will now be tested.
There is the electoral college process; there are the state legislators that have a say in the process; there is the Supreme Court.
There is also the possibility of pertinent executive orders that mandate transparent processes in the face of, say, apprehended insurrection via fraudulent voting processes.
There is also the matter of how millions of 'deplorables' with trucks and tractors and firearms and other means to make their point will react to obvious massive election travesty.
The conjunction of the COVID global scamdemic/plandemic, with crazed Bill Gates and kin lurking in the background with needles, 'peaceful' protesters in many cities setting fires and looting with near impunity, and a mass media that is clearly comprehensively committed to a demonic degree of dishonesty and manipulation, and lunatic levels of 'identity politics' ideology, are among the elements setting the stage for what may be an historical watershed.
The American Revolution in the 18th century, against the British Crown's authority, came about after years of simmering anger and sporadic resistance against British injustice. At some point there was a 'tipping point'. When Germany invaded and occupied Norway early in the 2nd WW, an effective resistance quickly formed in reaction, where death and torture were the known willing risk. Two years before, those forming the resistance would have been just going on with their lives.
No one knows today how this plays out.anon  Disclaimer , says: November 13, 2020 at 4:21 pm GMT • 3.5 hours ago
Who's Afraid of an Open Debate? The Truth About the Commission on Presidential Debates. The CPD is a duopoly which allows the major party candidates to draft secret agreements about debate arrangements including moderators, debate format and even participants.
Mar 6, 2014 Truth in Media "End Partisanship"
Ben Swann explains how the new coalition of EndPartisanship org is working to break the 2 party hold on primary elections, which currently lock around 50% of voters out of the process.
Sep 5, 2012 DNC Platform Changes on God, Jerusalem Spur Contentious Floor Vote
Democratic National Convention 2012: Delegates opposed to adding language on God, Israel's capital to platform shout, 'No!' in floor vote.
https://www.youtube.com/embed/t8BwqzzqcDs?feature=oembedAnonymous  Disclaimer , says: November 13, 2020 at 4:21 pm GMT • 3.5 hours ago
For those who are sick of Fake News CNN or FoxNews, watch this new channel that many Trump voters are flocking to:
I am currently watching an interview with SD Governor Kristi Noem, who went on ABC to challenge George Stenopolosus' claim that there is no fraud in this election. She pointed out that there has been many allegations, including dead people voting in PA and GA, she says we don't know how widespread this is, but we owe it to the 70+ million people who voted for Trump to investigate and ensure a clean and fair election. She said we gave Al Gore 37 days to investigate the result in 2000, why aren't we giving the same to Trump?
She is extremely articulate and sounds intelligent and honest, and what's more courageous to come forward like this. I hope she runs for president in 2024, I'd vote for her.@Chris in CackalackyOutsideMan , says: November 13, 2020 at 4:30 pm GMT • 3.4 hours ago
Am I the only one who sees something profoundly spiritual happening in front of our eyes?
Yes. In reality, 5% of White men sent Trump packing. That doesn't match the GOP negrophile narrative where "based" Hindustanis join the emerging conservative coalition to make sure White people can't get affordable healthcare in their own countries, though. So we'll have to watch you parasites spool up this pedantic "fraud" nonsense until the fat orange zioclown gracelessly gets dragged out.@DrewAgent76 , says: November 13, 2020 at 4:31 pm GMT • 3.3 hours ago
Testing Theories of American Politics: Elites, Interest Groups and Average Citizens
by Martin Gilens and Benjamin I. Page
https://scholar.princeton.edu/sites/default/files/mgilens/files/gilens_and_page_2014_-testing_theories_of_american_politics.doc.pdf@TomGreggThomasina , says: November 13, 2020 at 4:42 pm GMT • 3.2 hours ago
Good post. You will gain more insight from this background on the speech and drafting.
Jan 19, 2011 Eisenhower's "Military-Industrial Complex" Speech Origins and Significance US National Archives
President Dwight D. Eisenhower's farewell address, known for its warnings about the growing power of the "military-industrial complex," was nearly two years in the making. This Inside the Vaults video short follows newly discovered papers revealing that Eisenhower was deeply involved in crafting the speech.
https://www.youtube.com/embed/Gg-jvHynP9Y?feature=oembed@The Real WorldCyrano , says: November 13, 2020 at 5:03 pm GMT • 2.8 hours ago
Great article. Thanks. Agree with you about the big stealing being electronic. Trump tweeted out yesterday that over 2 million votes were stolen this way. For him to say this, they must have evidence.
Dinesh D'Souza said he hopes that when this matter comes before the Supreme Court that they will tackle once and for all what constitutes a legal vote.
Some pretty big names are involved with this Dominion Voting. It will be interesting to see what Trump's team of IT experts discover re the use of algorithms to swing the vote.Genrick Yagoda , says: November 13, 2020 at 5:07 pm GMT • 2.7 hours ago
Why (Oh, why) did Trump had to go? Because Trump is an enema to the Deep State. He was threatening to expose the biggest lie of the last 100 years – the supposed "liberalism" of US...@Wizard of OzDanFromCT , says: November 13, 2020 at 5:15 pm GMT • 2.6 hours ago
It has already been determined by the court. Pennsylvania ruled that late ballots are not to be counted.
https://static.foxnews.com/foxnews.com/content/uploads/2020/11/602-MD-2020-Order-Nov.-12.pdf@Stephen Allenfatmanscoop , says: November 13, 2020 at 5:15 pm GMT • 2.6 hours ago
The author refers to a body of overwhelmingly persuasive evidence of voter fraud that can be specified and quantified to provide proof of guilt beyond a reasonable doubt in criminal cases, not to mention hands down proof in civil cases requiring only a preponderance of the evidence to establish guilt. Furthermore, the Democrats' easily documented, elaborate efforts at concealing the vote counting process by shutting down the counting prior to sneaking truckloads of ballots in the back door is by itself powerful circumstantial evidence of their guilt. You have no idea what "evidence" means, either in general usage or in its strictly legal sense.fatmanscoop , says: November 13, 2020 at 5:38 pm GMT • 2.2 hours ago
The election cannot be trusted at all, just based on the insane entitled emotional state of the Globalist establishment alone. The system as-a-whole cannot be trusted, for the same reason. They are actively corrupting it in every way they can, and fully believe (as a matter of religious conviction) that they are right to do so.@CurmudgeonRobert Dolan , says: November 13, 2020 at 5:39 pm GMT • 2.2 hours ago
"no evidence of wide spread voter fraud"
That's one of the Jew/Anglo Puritan Establishment's new catch-phrases. There's also "no evidence" that Joe Biden acted in a corrupt manner in Ukraine, even though he admitted to it on tape. There's "no evidence" that Big Tech is biased against conservative plebians, despite their removing conservative plebians' published content arbitrarily and with no State compulsion to do so. The phrase "there's no evidence" is just a public commitment to ignore any evidence, no matter how blatant or obvious.Peripatetic Itch , says: November 13, 2020 at 5:41 pm GMT • 2.2 hours ago
https://www.trunews.com/stream/michigan-republican-governor-candidate-saw-voter-machines-connected-to-internet@DanFromCTOrville H. Larson , says: November 13, 2020 at 5:57 pm GMT • 1.9 hours ago
This newly discovered legal standard goes beyond "preponderance of the evidence" or even "guilt beyond a reasonable doubt" to establish absolute certainty as the standard.
Just the obvious and necessary complement of the Bob Mueller standard for Russian collusion, don't you think -- "could not (quite) exonerate"? /s
Don't you dare call this hypocrisy.@Rogueanon  Disclaimer , says: November 13, 2020 at 6:05 pm GMT • 1.8 hours ago
When it comes to protecting the integrity of elections, "low-tech" might be best!@endthefedThe Real World , says: November 13, 2020 at 6:42 pm GMT • 1.2 hours ago
His impotence makes a lot more sense when you know the full version was supposed to be Military-Industrial Congressional Complex.@TheTrumanShow as the reason why.Art , says: November 13, 2020 at 6:47 pm GMT • 1.1 hours ago
They went for a softer approach in KY in 2019. The first-term Repub Gov had a Yankee's forthrightness so they just latched onto comments he made regarding the underfunded teachers pension program and amped-it to high heaven getting teachers all in a frightful frenzy.
In that solidly Red state, with all other prominent offices on the ballot (AG, SoS, etc.) going overwhelmingly Repub , somehow the Repub Gov loses to the Dem by around 5000 votes. The "teachers pension" narrative was rolled-out as the reason. (Btw, it seems that Dominion, or another type, software was used to switch the votes in that race. I've seen video about it.)@Orville H. LarsonThe Real World , says: November 13, 2020 at 6:55 pm GMT • 56 minutes ago
When it comes to protecting the integrity of elections, "low-tech" might be best!
Paper ballots as ascribed by Tulsi Gabbard legislation is the only safe option for elections. Kudos to Tulsi!@Orville H. Larson out how the winds are blowing. There is nothing good about it.Priss Factor , says: Website November 13, 2020 at 7:02 pm GMT • 49 minutes ago
Why not this:
-- ONLY in-person voting over a 2-day period, a Sat and Sun, with polls being open from 6AM to 9PM both days.
-- Exceptions are the traditional requested absentee ballot where the voter can be authenticated.
-- Paper ballots must be used at the polls and no single box of 'Straight Vote by Party' is offered.
-- Some kind of SIMPLE scanning tabulator could be used of the ballots and with it NOT being connected to the internet.
There is far too much cheating opportunity built into our current system. That's intended, of course.
It needs to end!No Friend Of The Devil , says: November 13, 2020 at 7:09 pm GMT • 42 minutes ago
... ... ...
Because you don't get it. You are missing the big picture. It was well known that these systems had the ability to be hacked as soon as they were implemented. It is also a well known fact that massive mail in ballots increases the likelihood that corrupt individuals are more likely to get away with election fraud.
Everyone knew about the potential for voter fraud to occur, but the entire system is corrupt, including Trump who has allowed the massive corruption within the system that was present when he entered office to persist and grow because he is a wimpy, spineless, coward, that was too afraid to make any waves and take the heat that he promised his voters.
Why anyone voted for Trump in 2020 confounds me. I voted for him in 2016 and he has turned out to be one of the worst presidents in history.
Trump in his cowardess and dishonesty knew that the ailing economy would harm his chances of being re-elected, so he allowed the health scare scamdemic to occur and destroy the livelihoods, lives, and businesses of hundreds of millions of Americans because he is a psychopath. Trump did not do what he promised. Trump made America worse than it has ever been since the end of slavery. Jeremy Powell said today that the economy is dead and will never recover.
The only injustices that Trump gave a damn about were the injustices against himself and his family, and has committed countless injustices against the entire country and world during his term. Trump is a corrupt narcissist. The facts prove it. Trump is such a corrupt narcissist that he was willing to destroy the entire economy based on scientific fraud, high crimes, and treason to use as political cover for his own incompetency which is the most offensive and disgusting diabolical act ever perpetrated on the entire country.
Trump has also demanded the extradition of Assange after telling his voters that he loved wikileaks. Trump is a two-faced, lying, fraud. It has been his pattern. He consistently supports various groups and people like Wikileaks, Proud Boys, and others and panders to them and voters and tells people that he loves them, and then every time without fail when the heat is on, Trump says," I really don't know anything about them."
"I know nothing." Trump saying "I know nothing." defines his presidency and who he is as a person, a spineless, pandering, corrupt, two-faced, narcissist, loser, and wimp!
Why would anyone vote for him the second time around after a record of pathological incompetency and pathological corruption? What's to approve of about him? Go ahead, investigate voter fraud it if is permitted, and if it isn't then ask yourselves why it is that a system that enables election fraud is in place, and ask yourselves who had the ability to change it and, who had the ability to benefit from it!
Sep 16, 2020 | larouchepub.com
On Sept. 15, Tucker Carlson brought onto his show Darren Beattie, a former Trump speechwriter. Beattie explained to viewers that the same networks promoting color revolutions overseas are now training their sights on President Donald Trump: "What's unfolding before our eyes is a very specific type of coup called the 'color revolution.' "
Similarly, Revolver website posted a multi-part series on the color revolution against Trump, with its Sept. 9 installment taking up Norm Eisen, one of the participants in the Transition Integrity Project's war gaming of the 2020 election. Eisen was Obama's White House ethics czar and was hired by the Democratic leadership of the House Judiciary Committee in 2019, where he prepared ten articles of impeachment against Trump a month before Pelosi announced an official impeachment inquiry. He himself took part in the impeachment proceedings.
But his involvement in ousting Trump began even before the nomination. Eisen ran Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW), financed amongst others by George Soros's Open Society, which partnered with David Brock to put forward a blueprint -- issued before the inauguration -- for attacking Trump through such means as policing social media, getting tech companies to censor content (media platforms ... will no longer uncritically and without consequence host and enrich fake news), impeachment itself, fake news (a steady flow of damaging information, new revelations), and other techniques.
Eisen co-authored "The Democracy Playbook: Preventing and Reversing Democratic Backsliding," a Brookings guide to the perplexed seeking to institute policies through frankly undemocratic means. Eisen named Gene Sharp's From Dictatorship to Democracy as an inspiration for his document.
Consider another color revolutionary. Michael McFaul, former U.S. Ambassador to Russia and a supporter of the Ukraine color revolution, realized that "color revolution" was taking on a negative connotation. In August he tweeted a revised nomenclature: "Autocrats have demonized the phrase, 'color revolutions.' (& revolution generally has a negative connotation for many.) Instead, I use the term 'democratic breakthroughs.' "
What kind of democratic breakthrough? Consider McFaul's Sept. 4 tweet:
"Trump has lost the Intelligence Community. He has lost the State Department. He has lost the military. How can he continue to serve as our Commander in Chief?"
Astute readers will note that neither the IC, State Department, or military appoint the President, who takes that office by means that are actually democratic -- an election!
Eisen also heads the Transatlantic Democracy Working Group, whose website announces that it is "a bipartisan and transatlantic platform for discourse and coordination to address democratic backsliding in Europe." What is "democratic backsliding"? Naturally, it's when the plebes get uppity and vote for their favored candidates, as in, you know, elections.
Jan 01, 2021 | zerohedge.com
Authored by Jeffrey Tucker via The American Institute for Economic Research,
The paper of record in 2020 shifted dramatically to the most illiberal stance possible on the virus, pushing for full lockdowns, and ignoring or burying any information that might contradict the case for this unprecedented experiment in social and economic control. This article highlights the exceptions.
Even within the blatant and aggressive pro-lockdown bias, and consistent with the way the New York Times does its work, the paper has not been entirely barren of truth about Covid and lockdowns. Below I list five times that the news section of the paper, however inadvertently and however buried deep within the paper, actually told the truth.1. Your Coronavirus Test Is Positive. Maybe It Shouldn't Be.
I'm still stunned that the paper did a study that confirmed what people have suspected, namely that a high cycle threshold used on PCR testing was creating the appearance of a pandemic that might have long receded. The testing mania was generating wild illusions of millions of "asymptomatic" carriers and spreaders. How severe was the problem? Read this and weep:
In three sets of testing data that include cycle thresholds, compiled by officials in Massachusetts, New York and Nevada, up to 90 percent of people testing positive carried barely any virus, a review by The Times found.
On Thursday, the United States recorded 45,604 new coronavirus cases, according to a database maintained by The Times . If the rates of contagiousness in Massachusetts and New York were to apply nationwide, then perhaps only 4,500 of those people may actually need to isolate and submit to contact tracing.
The implications of this revelation are incredible. A major reason for the ongoing lockdowns are due to the pouring in of positive case numbers from massive testing. If 90% of these positive tests are false, we have a major problem. The whole basis of the panic disappears. All credit to the Times for running the article but why no follow up and why no change in its editorial stance?2. Scientists See Signs of Lasting Immunity to Covid-19, Even After Mild Infections .
Byline By Katherine J. Wu
Gone missing this year in public commentary has been much at all about naturally acquired immunities from the virus, even though the immune system deserves credit for why human kind has lasted this long even in the presence of pathogens. That the Times ran this piece was another exception in otherwise exceptionally bad coverage. It said in part:
Scientists who have been monitoring immune responses to the virus are now starting to see encouraging signs of strong, lasting immunity, even in people who developed only mild symptoms of Covid-19, a flurry of new studies suggests. Disease-fighting antibodies, as well as immune cells called B cells and T cells that are capable of recognizing the virus, appear to persist months after infections have resolved -- an encouraging echo of the body's enduring response to other viruses .3. Why You Shouldn't Worry About Studies Showing Waning Coronavirus Antibodies .
Researchers have yet to find unambiguous evidence that coronavirus reinfections are occurring, especially within the few months that the virus has been rippling through the human population. The prospect of immune memory "helps to explain that," Dr. Pepper said.
Byline Apoorva Mandavilli
Reinforcing the solid point above:4. Schoolchildren Seem Unlikely to Fuel Coronavirus Surges, Scientists Say .
Data from monkeys suggests that even low levels of antibodies can prevent serious illness from the virus, if not a re-infection. Even if circulating antibody levels are undetectable, the body retains the memory of the pathogen. If it crosses paths with the virus again, balloon-like cells that live in the bone marrow can mass-produce antibodies within hours.
Byline: Apoorva Mandavilli
It's still a shock that so many schools closed their doors this year, partly from disease panic but also from compliance with orders from public health officials. Nothing like this has happened, and the kids have been brutalized as a result, not to mention the families who found themselves unable to cope at home. For millions of students, a whole year of schooling is gone. And they have been taught to treat their fellow human beings as nothing more than disease vectors. So it was amazing to read this story in the Times :5. One-Third of All U.S. Coronavirus Deaths Are Nursing Home Residents or Workers .
So far, schools do not seem to be stoking community transmission of the coronavirus, according to data emerging from random testing in the United States and Britain. Elementary schools especially seem to seed remarkably few infections.
Byline Karen Yourish, K.K. Rebecca Lai, Danielle Ivory and Mitch Smith
Another strangely missing part of mainstream coverage has been honesty about the risk gradient in the population. It is admitted even by the World Health Organization that the case fatality rate for Covid-19 from people under the age of 70 is 0.05%. The serious danger is for people with low life expectancy and broken immune systems. Knowing that, as we have since February, we should have expected the need for special protection for nursing homes. It was incredibly obvious. Instead of doing that, some governors shoved Covid patients into nursing homes. Astonishing. In any case, the above article (and this one too) was one of the few times this year that the Times actually spelled out the many thousands times risk to the aged and sick as versus the young and healthy.Notable Opinion columns
The op-ed page of the paper mirrored the news coverage, with only a handful of exceptions. Those are noted below.Is Our Fight Against Coronavirus Worse Than the Disease?
Op-ed by David Katz
I am deeply concerned that the social, economic and public health consequences of this near total meltdown of normal life -- schools and businesses closed, gatherings banned -- will be long lasting and calamitous, possibly graver than the direct toll of the virus itself. The stock market will bounce back in time, but many businesses never will. The unemployment, impoverishment and despair likely to result will be public health scourges of the first order.Quarantine May Negatively Affect Kids' Immune Systems .
Worse, I fear our efforts will do little to contain the virus, because we have a resource-constrained, fragmented, perennially underfunded public health system. Distributing such limited resources so widely, so shallowly and so haphazardly is a formula for failure. How certain are you of the best ways to protect your most vulnerable loved ones? How readily can you get tested?
Op-ed by Donna L. Farber and Thomas ConnorsWhat Has Lockdown Done to Us? .
During the Covid-19 pandemic, the world is unwittingly conducting what amounts to the largest immunological experiment in history on our own children. We have been keeping children inside, relentlessly sanitizing their living spaces and their hands and largely isolating them. In doing so, we have prevented large numbers of them from becoming infected or transmitting the virus. But in the course of social distancing to mitigate the spread, we may also be unintentionally inhibiting the proper development of children's immune systems.
Op-ed by By Drew Holden
Our mental health suffers, too. The psychological effects of loneliness are a health risk comparable with risk obesity or smoking. Anxiety and depression have spiked since lockdown orders went into effect. The weeks immediately following them saw nearly an 18 percent jump in overdose deaths and, as of last month, more than 40 states had reported increases. One in four young adults age 18 to 25 reported seriously considering suicide within the 30-day window of a recent study. Experts fear that suicides may increase; for young Americans, these concerns are even more acute. Calls to domestic violence hotlines have soared. America's elderly are dying from the isolation that was meant to keep them safe.
Jun 04, 2020 | www.haaretz.com
Slavoj Zizek's 'Brutal, Dark' Formula for Saving the World
The pandemic is liable to worsen, ecological disasters loom and technological surveillance will terminate democracy. Salvation will come only by reorganizing human society. A conversation with the radical – and anxious – philosopher Slavoj Zizek Share in Facebook Share in Twitter Send in e-mail Send in e-mail Go to comments Print article Zen Read
Dec 23, 2020 | assets.documentcloud.org
CLARE LOCKE THOMAS A. CLARE, P.C. L L P MEGAN L. MEIER
December 16, 2020 Via Email, Federal Express, & Hand Delivery
Sidney Powell, P.C.
2911 Turtle Creek Blvd, Suite 300 Dallas, Texas 75219
Sidney Powell Defending the Republic 10130 Northlake Blvd. #214342 West Palm Beach, Florida 34412
Re: Defamatory Falsehoods About Dominion
Dear Ms. Powell:
We represent US Dominion Inc. and its wholly owned subsidiaries, Dominion Voting Systems, Inc. and Dominion Voting Systems Corporation (collectively, "Dominion"). We write regarding your wild, knowingly baseless, and false accusations about Dominion, which you made on behalf of the Trump Campaign as part of a coordinated media circus and fundraising scheme featuring your November 19 press conference in Washington, D.C. and including your "Stop the Steal" rally and numerous television and radio appearances on -- and statements to -- Fox News, Fox Business, Newsmax, and the Rush Limbaugh Radio Show, among others.
... ... ...
I. Your reckless disinformation campaign is predicated on lies that have endangered Dominion's business and the lives of its employees.
Given the sheer volume and ever-expanding set of lies that you have told and are continuing to tell about Dominion as part of your multi-media disinformation "Kraken" fundraising campaign, it would be impractical to address every one of your falsehoods in this letter. Without conceding the truth of any of your claims about Dominion, we write to demand that you retract your most serious false accusations, which have put Dominion's employees' lives at risk and caused enormous harm to the company.
For example, you falsely claimed that Dominion and its software were created in Venezuela for the purpose of rigging elections for the now-deceased Venezuelan dictator Hugo Chavez, that Dominion paid kickbacks to Georgia officials in return for a "no-bid" contract to use Dominion systems in the 2020 election, and that Dominion rigged the 2020 U.S. Presidential Election by manipulating votes, shifting votes, installing and using an algorithm to modify or "weight" votes such that a vote for Biden counted more than a vote for Trump, trashing Trump votes, adding Biden votes, and training election workers to dispose of Trump votes and to add Biden votes.
By way of example only, just last week, you made the following false assertions about Dominion to Jan Jekielek at The Epoch Times:'
Effectively what they did with the machine fraud was to, they did everything from injecting massive quantities of votes into the system that they just made up, to running counterfeit ballots through multiple times in multiple batches to create the appearance of votes that weren't really there. They trashed votes.
These statements are just the tip of the iceberg, which includes similar and other false claims you made at your Washington, D.C. press conference and to other media outlets with global internet audiences. Your outlandish accusations are demonstrably fake. While soliciting people to send you "millions of dollars"2 and holding yourself out as a beacon of truth, you have purposefully avoided naming Dominion as a defendant in your sham litigations-effectively denying Dominion the opportunity to disprove your false accusations in court. Dominion values freedom of speech and respects the right of all Americans-of all political persuasions -- to exercise their First Amendment rights and to disagree with each other. But while you are entitled to your own opinions, Ms. Powell, you are not entitled to your own facts. Defamatory falsehoods are actionable in court and the U.S.
Supreme Court has made clear that "there is no constitutional value in false statements of fact." Gertz v. Welch, Inc., 418 U.S. 323, 340 (1974). Dominion welcomes transparency and a full investigation of the relevant facts in a court of law, where it is confident the truth will prevail. Here are the facts:
1. Dominion's vote counts have been repeatedly verified by paper ballot recounts and independent audits.
Dominion is a non-partisan company that has proudly partnered with public officials from both parties in accurately tabulating the votes of the American people in both "red" and "blue" states and counties. Far from being created to rig elections for a now-deceased Venezuelan dictator, Dominion's voting systems are certified under standards promulgated by the U.S. Election Assistance Commission ("EAC"), reviewed and tested by independent testing laboratories accredited by the EAC, and were designed to be auditable and include a paper ballot backup to verify results. Indeed, paper ballot recounts and independent audits have repeatedly and conclusively debunked your election-rigging claims, and on November 12, 2020, the Elections Infrastructure Government Coordinating Council and the Election Infrastructure Sector Coordinating Executive Committees released a joint statement confirming that there is "no evidence that any voting system deleted or lost votes, changed votes, or was in any way compromised" and that the 2020 election was the most secure in American history.3 The Joint Statement was signed and endorsed by, among others, the National Association of State Election Directors, National Association of Secretaries of State, and the U.S. Cybersecurity & Infrastructure Security Agency ("CISA") -- then led by a Trump appointee, Chris Krebs.
In addition, your false accusation that Dominion rigged the 2020 election is based on a demonstrably false premise that wildly overstates Dominion's very limited role in elections. Dominion provides tools such as voting machines that accurately tabulate votes for the bipartisan poll workers, poll watchers, and local election officials who work tirelessly to run elections and ensure accurate results. Dominion's machines count votes from county-verified voters using a durable paper ballot. Those paper ballots are the hard evidence proving the accuracy of the vote counts from Dominion's machines. If Dominion had manipulated the votes, the paper ballots would not match the machine totals. In fact, they do match. Recounts and audits have proven that Dominion did what it was designed and hired to do: accurately tabulate votes.
2. Dominion has no connection to Hugo Chavez. Venezuela, or China.
As you are well aware from documents in the public domain and attached to your court filings, Hugo Chavez's elections were not handled by Dominion, but by an entirely different company -- Smartmatic. This is a critical fact because you have premised your defamatory falsehoods on your intentionally false claim that Dominion and Smartmatic are the same company even though you know that they are entirely separate companies who compete with each other. Dominion was not created in or for Venezuela, has never been located there, and is not owned by Smartmatic or Venezuelan or Chinese investors. Dominion has never provided machines or any of its software or technology to Venezuela, nor has it ever participated in any elections in Venezuela. It did not receive $400 million from the Chinese in the weeks before the 2020 election or otherwise. It has no ties to the Chinese government, the Venezuelan government, Hugo Chavez, Malloch Brown, George Soros, Bigfoot, or the Loch Ness Monster. Dominion does not use Smartmatic's software or machines, and there was no Smartmatic technology in any of Dominion's voting machines in the 2020 election.
3. You falsely claimed that Dominion's founder admitted he "can change a million votes, no problem at all" and that you would "tweet out the video later''-- but you never did so because no such video exists.
During at least one of your many media appearances, you promised to "tweet out [a] video" of Dominion's founder admitting that he "can change a million votes, no problem at all." Your assertion -- to a global internet audience -- that you had such damning video evidence bolstered your false accusations that Dominion had rigged the election. Yet you have never produced that video because, as you know, it does not exist. Dominion's founder never made such a claim because Dominion cannot change votes. Its machines simply tabulate the paper ballots that remain the custody of the local election officials -- nothing more, nothing less. 4. You falsely claimed that you have a Dominion employee "on tape" saving he "rigged the election for Biden''-- but you know that no such tape exists. In peddling your defamatory accusations, you also falsely told a national audience that you had a Dominion employee "on tape" saying that "he rigged the election for Biden." Your own court filings prove that no such tape exists. In them, you cited an interview of Joe Oltmann, a Twitter- banned "political activist" who -- far from claiming he had that shocking alleged confession "on tape"-claimed he took "notes" during a conference call he supposedly joined after "infiltrating Antifa." This is a facially ludicrous claim for a number of reasons, including the fact that he lives in Colorado, where it would have been perfectly legal to record such a call if it had actually happened. As a result of your false accusations, that Dominion employee received death threats.
II. Because there is no reliable evidence supporting your defamatory falsehoods, you actively manufactured and misrepresented evidence to support them.
Despite repeatedly touting the overwhelming "evidence" of your assertions during your media campaign, every court to which you submitted that socalled "evidence" has dismissed each of your sham litigations, and even Trump appointees and supporters have acknowledged -- including after you filed your "evidence" in court, posted it on your fundraising website, and touted it in the media -- that there is no evidence that actually supports your assertions about Dominion. Indeed:
- One federal judge observed that you submitted "nothing but speculation and conjecture that votes for President Trump were destroyed, discarded or switched to votes for Vice President Biden." Op. & Order Den. Pl.'s Emer. Motion, for Deck, Emer., and Inj. Relief at 34, Whitmer v. City of Detroit, No. 20-cv-12134 (E.D. Mich. Dec. 7, 2020) [Dkt. 62].
- Another federal judge commented that the attachments to your complaint were "only impressive for their volume," are "largely based on anonymous witnesses, hearsay, and irrelevant analysis of unrelated elections," and include "expert reports" that "reach implausible conclusions, often because they are derived from wholly unreliable sources." Order at 24-25, Bowyerv. Ducey, No. 2-20-cv-02321 (D. Ariz. Dec. 9, 2020) [Dkt. 84].
- Despite your claim that you have so much "evidence" that it feels as if you are drinking from a "fire hose," when asked by your interviewers and other media outlets to provide that evidence, you have failed to do so each and every time. Conservative television host Tucker Carlson even called you out for failing to provide any evidence to support your assertions.4
- After you put the purported "evidence" in your court filings, Trump loyalist and U.S. Attorney General Bill Barr stated, "There's been one assertion that would be systemic fraud and that would be the claim that machines were programmed essentially to skew the election results. And the DHS and DOJ have looked into that, and so far, we haven't seen anything to substantiate that."
... ... ...
Fifth, you had a financial incentive in making the defamatory accusations. Your own conduct and statements at the press conference, media tour, and on your websites make it clear that you were publicizing your wild accusations as part of a fundraising scheme and in order to drum up additional business and notoriety for yourself. Your financial incentive and motive to make the defamatory accusations is further evidence of actual malice. See Brown v. Petrolite Corp., 965 F.2d 38, 47 (5th Cir. 1992); Enigma Software Grp. USA, LLC v. Bleeping Computer LLC, 194 F. Supp. 3d 263, 288 (S.D.N.Y. 2016).
Sixth, you cannot simply claim ignorance of the facts. As a licensed attorney, you were obligated to investigate the factual basis for your claims before making them in court. 31 There is no factual basis for your defamatory accusations against Dominion and numerous reliable sources and documents in the public domain have repeatedly debunked your accusations. As such, you either conducted the inquiry required of you as a licensed attorney and violated your ethical obligations by knowingly making false assertions rebutted by the information you found, or you violated your ethical obligations by purposefully avoiding undertaking the reasonable inquiry required of you as a member of the bar. Either is additional evidence of actual malice.
Taken together, your deliberate misrepresentation and manufacturing of evidence, the inherent improbability of your accusations, your reliance on facially unreliable sources, your intentional disregard of reliable sources, your preconceived storyline, your financial incentive, and your ethical violations are clear and convincing evidence of actual malice. See Eramo v. Rolling Stone, 209 F. Supp. 3d 862,872 (W.D. Va. 2016) (denying defendant's motion for summary judgment and finding "[ajlthough failure to adequately investigate, a departure from journalistic standards, or ill
Dec 18, 2020 | www.counterpunch.org
... ... ...
Writes Margaret Kimberley (in "Opposing War Propaganda Against China," Jan. 25, 2020):
"Now whenever we see a reference to China in the corporate media we always see the words communist party attached. This silly redundancy is war propaganda along with every other smear and slur. We are told that 1 million Uighurs are imprisoned when there is quite literally no proof of any such thing. China, the country which first experienced the COVID-19 virus, was the first to vanquish it, and has a low death rate of less than 5,000 people to prove it. We depend here in America on China to produce masks and other protective equipment but China is declared the villain. The country that within one month of realizing there was a new communicable disease gave the world the keys to conquering it.
"Instead the country which fails where China succeeds, in providing for the needs of its people and their health, is an international pariah, with most of the world barring Americans from travel and turning us into a giant leper colony. Trump speaks of the "kung flu" and the "Wuhan virus," but it is China which conquered the disease that has killed 130,000 Americans and forced a quarantine which has caused economic devastation to millions of people here.
"But Americans get nothing but war propaganda. Trump and Joe Biden outdo one another bragging about who will be tougher to China. This week we saw the U.S. government violate international law again and close the Chinese consulate in Houston, Texas."
Writes Roxana Baspineiro in "Solidarity vs. Sanctions in Times of a Global Pandemic":
"Chinese and Cuban doctors have been providing support in Iran, Italy, Spain and have offered their services and expertise to the most vulnerable countries in Latin America, Africa, and Europe. They have developed medicines and medical treatments such as Interferon Alpha 2B in Cuba, one of the potential medicines to combat the virus, which reduces the mortality rate of people affected by COVID19. But above all, they have offered their interest in distributing them to the peoples of the world without any patent or benefit whatsoever."
Regardless of whether citizens of the US know about Chinese efforts, people in other nations have noticed, according to Stansfield Smith, who writes:
"From the responses to the coronavirus pandemic, the world has seen the model of public health efficiency China presented in controlling the problem at home. It has seen China's world leadership in offering international aid and care. It has seen the abdication of leadership by the US and even its obstruction in working to find solutions. Now the US still cannot control the virus, and remains mired in economic crisis, while China is rebounding. In sum, the pandemic has made the world look at both China and the US in a new light. And it has dealt a serious blow to the US rulers' two decade long effort to counter the rise of China."
... ... ...
The final section of the book, "Escalating anti-China campaign," is a diverse collection of essays on subjects such as: US accusations of Chinese repression of Uyghurs; NATO exercises that threatened to exacerbate COVID spread even while China was bringing aid to Europe; COVID in the US armed forces; US military belligerence toward China; the color revolution in Hong Kong; Vietnam's response to COVID; and a call from Margaret Flowers and the recently deceased Kevin Zeese to replace the US pivot to Asia with a "Pivot to Peace."
Ajamu Baraka writes:
"The psychopathology of white supremacy blinds U.S. policy- makers to the political, economic, and geopolitical reality that the U.S. is in irreversible decline as a global power. The deep structural contradictions of the U.S. economy and state was exposed by the weak and confused response to COVID-19 and the inability of the state to provide minimum protections for its citizens and residents.
"But even in decline, the U.S. has a vast military structure that it can use to threaten and cause massive death and destruction. This makes the U.S. a threat to the planet and collective humanity because U.S policy-makers appear to be in the grip of a deathwish in which they are prepared to destroy the world before voluntarily relinquishing power, especially to a non-European power like China.
"For example, when Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo declared in public that the United States and its Western European allies must put China in "its proper place," this represents a white supremacist mindset that inevitably will lead to monumental errors of judgment."
So COVID-19 is, to put it mildly, a teachable moment. Looking around the world right now, we can see who is learning and who isn't. As "Capitalism on a Ventilator" vividly illustrates, China is leading the way, and the United States is slipping into obsolescence. Those who hope to survive the coming travails can see who to follow and who to avoid.
Kollibri terre Sonnenblume is a writer living on the West Coast of the U.S.A. More of Kollibri's writing and photos can be found at Macska Moksha Press .
Dec 20, 2020 | www.zerohedge.com
JohnHellHood 3 hours ago
I love America and its non-stop CIA psyop cyclops social media television.
The New Year will bring renewed police crackdown on private assembly, people's homes, the continued destruction of employment, $40 checks from Uncle Joe to "tide you over," hysterical harpies physically assaulting anyone without a mask in blue states, and a full-out propaganda assault to destroy the defenseless minds of your friends and family.
You're going to lose a lot in the New Year. 2020 was just the beginning. Wait until summer 2021 and BLM/Antifa chaos. Conservative politicians like Ted Cruz and Rand Paul will be crying "insurrection act!" and Tucker Carlson will launch into Season Two of 30-minute cracking-voice monologues "this is your America!" while nothing and no one does a goddamn thing to protect you.
We are on our own. Doctors, schools, cops, families, people you work with -- all are slowly being sucked into the vortex of this simulacrum of hell being broadcast on their "smart" phones. Compared to what's being sold to them, your voice sounds positively insane...
Dec 17, 2020 | turcopolier.typepad.com
" Correspondence between Hunter Biden and CEFC Chairman Ye Jianming from 2017 shows President-elect Joe Biden's son extending "best wishes from the entire Biden family ," and urging the chairman to "quickly" send a $10 million wire to "properly fund and operate" the Biden joint venture with the now-bankrupt Chinese energy company.
The $10 million transfer to the joint venture was never completed.
Fox News obtained an email Hunter Biden sent on June 18, 2017, to Zhao Run Long at CEFC, asking that they please "translate my letter to Chairman Ye, please extend my warmest best wishes and that I hope to see the Chairman soon.""
Biden went on to note that Bobulinski had "sent a request to Dong Gongwen [Gongwen Dong] and Director Zang for the funding of the $10 MM USD wire."
"I would appreciate if you will send that quickly so we can properly fund and operate Sinohawk," Biden wrote.
"I am sure you have been well briefed by our dear friend Director Zan g on the political and economic connections we have established in countries where you are interested in expanding during the coming months and years, " he continued. "I look forward to our next meeting."
"Fox News also obtained the response from Ye as part of an email, dated Sept. 6, 2017, from Biden business associate James Gilliar to Bobulinski. That email forwarded Ye's letter responding to Biden. The letter is dated July 10, 2017.
Ye stated that he had arranged for Zang and Dong to "expedite the charter capital input to SinoHawk."
"I am glad to hear from you! Time flies and it has been months since we met in the US. It seems that we were always on a rush when we were together," Ye wrote to Biden, adding that "the consensus we made last time has been materialized in a timely manner."
Ye also recommended Biden "arrange your people to coordinate with Director Zang and Gongwen Dong for specific work."
"I will continue to pay attention and give my support," Ye stated. "I have arranged Director Zang and Gongwen Dong to expedite the charter capital input to SinoHawk."
"I look forward to meeting you in the near future and discussing our joint undertaking. If there is anything I could do please do not hesitate to write to me," Ye wrote. "Please accept my best regards to you and your family."" foxnews
Well, pilgrims, the Ron Johnson hearing today was fun. The best part for me was former Director Krebs' (election security guy for DHS) repeated statements that the election was secure, "the most secure in history." Pilgrims, the distinction betwixt "secure" and "honest" seems to have escaped him as he ignored questions about actual evidence of fraud, a swampie to the end.
And then, there is Chairman Joe. He knows that nothing will be easier than to kill off prosecution of his creepy son, or to "suggest" to the Delaware federal prosecutor that a minor indictment would be appropriate, something resulting in a suspended sentence.
I have watched Tucker debrief Bobulinski twice about that payment. The way Bobulinski tells it (with documentation) the Bidens were loaned $5 million by MEFC to pay their side of the capitalization and then actually pocketed the other $5 million as a direct payment to La Familia from FEMC (Oh Danny Boy!) from - equal opportunity! That was too much for the Bobster (former naval Lt., man of world finance, patriot, self-abnegator, etc.) Besides, where was his share?
Pistols at dawn? Good! Tucker can act as his second. Where are my cased flintlock smoothbores? They are somewhere around here, the English 18th Century ones in the fitted blue velvet case. pl
Dec 06, 2020 | www.zerohedge.com
COVID Is Exposing The Cancerous Underbelly Of US Healthcare by Tyler Durden Sat, 12/05/2020 - 12:20 Twitter Facebook Reddit Email Print
Authored by Charles Hugh Smith via OfTwoMinds blog,
If you still believe that America's Sickcare is "the finest in the world" and is endlessly sustainable, please study these three charts and extend the trendlines.
I've long been making the distinction between healthcare and sickcare : healthcare is the service provided by frontline operational caregivers (doctors, nurses, aides, technicians, etc.) and sickcare is the financialized system of Big Hospital Corporations, Big Insurers, Big Pharma, etc. and their lobbyists that keep the federal money spigots wide open.
This financialized sickcare system is being consumed by the cancer of greedy profiteering pursued by self-serving insiders. The delivery of healthcare is secondary to maximizing revenues and profits by any means available .
To believe such a corrupt system is sustainable is magical thinking at its most destructive.
Covid-19 is revealing this cancerous underbelly. Knowledge of the inner workings of corporate administration is not evenly distributed, so every participants' experience of the systemic dysfunction will vary.
Here is one MD's observations of the system's priorities. Others may have different views but the maxim follow the money is clearly the correct place to start any inquiry of how America's financialized sickcare functions in the real world.
From what I'm hearing from the front line, a not insignificant number of admissions are of folks who would not have been admitted in March when there was fear of both the unknown and systemic failure and, not coincidently, when COVID diagnoses didn't pay as much.
Today, the admission criteria for COVID is so much more flexible than for standard diagnoses like CHF, and pays so much better than other diagnoses that our 'healthcare' system is rapidly becoming a 'COVID care' system.
The surge in hospitalizations and subsequent COVID-identified deaths may be driven, in part, to health systems adapting to new COVID revenue streams.
This would seemingly be good news, after all if it's the hospital administrator's desire to fill empty beds that's driving admissions rather than infection rates, then systemic failure can be averted through moderating those admission rates based on system capacity.
If your hospital fills up, just start sending the marginal cases home--inpatient/outpatient; the outcome for the patient will be pretty much the same and you've made as much money as your capacity will allow.
Unfortunately, our healthcare 'system' doesn't work like that.
Health systems are in the business of generating revenue, not value. Recent COVID-related demand destruction has crushed that revenue so they're hungry for more.
Those in health-system operations and those in leadership live in two different worlds. Leadership will push COVID admissions far beyond any operational limits in their quest for short term performance. One cannot overstate their mendacity and drive for lucre.
Hospitals are becoming 'COVID factories' with all other admissions (which pay far less) relegated to second tier status.
Health systems are evolving into an 'all COVID, all the time' format with the emphasis on testing and (soon) vaccination, at the expense of all else.
Not a few systems of my acquaintance are laying off outpatient medical staff because their supporting personnel have quit and are not replaced--those resources are being re-directed to COVID testing and in preparation for mass vaccination.
For the health system in the business of generating revenue, it's an excellent tactic. They save themselves significant overhead by not paying the clinicians and they make up the revenue through high-margin COVID services and government bailout payments.
For patients who actually need healthcare, though, this tactic is deadly.
The perversion is end-stage, the health systems pretend to deliver healthcare and the government pays them to continue the pretense.
There is no long term thinking here, no empathy for the workforce, no thought to the mission beyond window-dressing--just a relentless, risk-adverse financialization machine.
Think of COVID as a new widget for which the customer will pay 2.5 times the going price with no quality control, but only for a limited amount of time. Add in talentless, rent-seeking leadership and all becomes clear.
Of course the real risk is that maxed out hospitals could find themselves in a situation where admissions suddenly become driven by demand rather than the business model, with a true non-linear path to failure laying beyond.
The longer daily national hospital occupancy stays above the approximate pre-COVID capacity of 100k, the more likely you'll see systemic breakdowns--local at first, then regional.
You won't see it in the press, the healthcare cartels have a pretty good lock on the local media. Once news starts getting censored on social media, though, then you know it's happening.
Hold me to that, And call me out in three months if I'm not right.
If you still believe that America's sickcare is "the finest in the world" and is endlessly sustainable, please study these three charts and extend the trendlines.
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Dec 06, 2020 | www.rt.com
CNNgate? CNN chief Jeff Zucker offered Trump 'WEEKLY SHOW' & gave 'the boss' tips for presidential debate in leaked 2016 audio 9 Sep, 2020 03:37 / Updated 2 months ago Get short URL FILE PHOTOS. © Reuters / Kevin Lamarque ; Reuters / Christian Hartmann 88 Follow RT on CNN head Jeff Zucker appears to have offered Donald Trump a "weekly show" on the network in 2016, also giving tips for a presidential debate, arguing Trump could not win the race without his outlet's support, leaked audio reveals.
Zucker – who now presides over one of the most fervently anti-Trump media outlets in the American corporate press – hatched the idea to give then-candidate Trump a weekly slot on CNN during a March 2016 phone call with Micheal Cohen, a lawyer for Trump at the time, according to audio obtained by Fox News' Tucker Carlson.
Speaking with Cohen hours before the final Republican primary debate in the 2016 race, Zucker said that while the Trump campaign had shown "great instincts, great guts and great understanding of everything," he insisted victory would be impossible without CNN's backing.
"Here's the thing you cannot be elected president of the United States without CNN," Zucker boasted. "Fox and MSNBC are irrelevant – irrelevant – in electing a general election candidate."ALSO ON RT.COM As obsession with Trump tanks CNN ratings, network doubles down
When Cohen suggested the CNN chief relay his thoughts to Trump himself, Zucker demurred, saying he is "very conscious of not putting too much in email," as Trump – "the boss" – might go blabbing about it on the campaign trail.
You know, as fond as I am of the boss, he also has a tendency if I call him or I email him, he then is capable of going out at his next rally and saying that we just talked, and I can't have that, if you know what I'm saying.
Zucker soon talked himself back into contacting Trump, however, committing to "give him a call right now" to "wish him luck in the debate tonight" – hosted by none other than CNN – adding "I have all these proposals for him, like I want to do a weekly show with him and all this stuff."
He went on to lavish praise on Trump, saying he had "never lost a debate" and would do "great" during the CNN event later that night, even offering detailed advice for how the president-to-be could deflect allegations that he is a "con man" from other candidates.ALSO ON RT.COM Trump campaign threatens to SUE CNN for 'unfair, unfounded, unethical & unlawful' attacks on president
While the source of the recording is unclear, the leak has made waves online, given that Zucker has since made himself into Trump's " cable news nemesis ." The network itself, meanwhile, has fielded an endless stream of negative coverage of the president, heavily pushing the discredited 'Russiagate' conspiracy theory for years and throwing full weight behind the Democrats' failed impeachment effort.
Some netizens have already suggested the "damning" revelation could soon result in Zucker's ouster from his high perch at CNN.
"You think Jeff Zucker will be fired? I actually think there's a decent chance he will be. Trying to kiss up to Trump is on par with murder in CNN world," wrote filmmaker and conservative pundit Robby Starbuck.
Others were less taken aback by the audio, as many pointed to the fact that Zucker and Trump have a lengthy history together, both working on 'The Apprentice,' the hit reality show that helped to solidify Trump's status as a pop culture icon. In 2012, Trump even hailed Zucker's takeover as CNN president, saying the network made a "great move," and that Zucker "was responsible for me and The Apprentice on NBC – became #1 show!"
"Everyone knows Zucker made Trump, it's 100% true," one user said . "Trump was down and out. Zucker pitched him a reality TV show called the Apprentice. Why? Because he likes his New Yorkers, he likes Trump."
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Dec 02, 2020 | www.youtube.com
Our Lady , 2 days ago
Fake news and fake awards.
John Tucker , 2 days agoJan Fogle , 2 days ago
Cuomo cut funding to Hospitals during first wave
considering cuomo was responsible for spreading the virus exponentially in the early days, he probably has had more influence on all of our lives than the others
Pookie Wookie , 2 days agoZeljko Dakic , 53 minutes ago
Obama got a Nobel Peace Prize and dropped more bombs than any other President in history and took us from 3 to 7 wars.
Story about Fauci, at least at the time was that it was so hospitals wouldn't be liable for deaths among medical staff. But I think it was completely bad what both Cuomo and Fauci
Kathleen McCormick , 1 day agoFryeKitFox , 2 days ago
Fauci is complicit and not to be trusted. He's worse than Cuomo.Techloid Tech , 2 days ago (edited)
Time is inconsequential. Neoliberal rag.
Still can't believe people defend Fauci. Then again people defend Obama and Bush...
John Sutherland , 18 hours ago
Dr. Fauci was the trusted expert who intentionally lied to the American people and made things far worse. Cuomo is directly responsible for why New York's response to the virus was so bad and cost many lives. Bullshit award.
airmark02 , 2 days ago
Fake Media Fake Heros Fake Awards
Dec 01, 2020 | www.washingtontimes.com
Google, Facebook and Twitter fixed the election for Biden over Trump Follow Us
Dec 01, 2020 | turcopolier.typepad.com
BillWade , 30 November 2020 at 09:12 AM
I will henceforth refer to the MSM as the regime media or RM.
We reluctantly turned off Tucker last week. I felt bad about it as after watching him for a few years my wife slowly left behind her liberal north eastern views and came around to the right side of things. I'll thank him for that.
Free State of Florida
Nov 28, 2020 | www.unz.com
... ... ...
Every 2020 issue polarizes through this prism.
On the issue of voter fraud, the right has sullied real concerns with ballot legitimacy in highly mismanaged black cities with Bircherist bufoonery. The last of the MAGA faithful -- Alex Jones, Steve Bannon, Q-Anon, Mike Cernovich, Dinesh D'Souza, Nick Fuentes, Ali Alexander, One America News, and the Zionist opportunists at Newsmax -- have been trying to cancel more sensible right-wing populists like Tucker Carlson, Ryan Gidursky, Pedro Gonzalez and others for expressing skepticism about some of the Trump campaign's narratives on the election.
Like him or not, Tucker is a serious political commentator that has tried and failed to provide coherence and principles to Trumpism for the last four years. When Tucker asked Sidney Powell for evidence regarding her claim that Castro, Hugo Chavez, Nicolas Maduro and the Chinese Communist Party stole millions of votes from Trump in an international Marxist coup, he was subjected to insults, boycotts and unhinged shrieking in response. "THANK YOU SEAN HANNITY FOR HOLDING THE LINE. THANK YOU TUCKER FOR THROWING US UNDER THE BUS," wrote Nick Fuentes.
Tucker was vindicated when Trump's team abruptly severed ties with Powell and shelved her circus act. But that hasn't stopped online Trumpistanis from speculating that Tucker's red bracelet is a sign that he is a secret kabbalah practitioner or that he's been a double agent for the satanic pedophile cartel led by Tom Hanks put in place just for this moment. For Jews concerned that Tucker has been promoting the potent combination of nationalism and economic populism to deplorables since 2016, it is a welcome amusement to see him being sacrificed on the alter of Orange Man Good and traded in for a harmless lapdog like Hannity.
30 of 31 voter fraud lawsuits filed by Team Trump have been tossed. The whole thing is starting to look like a Birther-style publicity stunt to help Trump monetize his following after January. The most recent defeat , a lawsuit demanding 7,000,000 votes be invalidated in Pennsylvania, did not provide any compelling evidence for fraud or malfeasance.
Four years ago, Bernie expressed skepticism about mass immigration while Trump's original campaign hinted at a public health care option and a war against Wall Street. These real world issues impact real world people, and it allowed for a cross-front alliance of ordinary citizens against the elite. The two candidates traded disenfranchised and largely white working class voters throughout the primary, then the general.
But now there are actors on both sides trying to drag things back to personalities, political tribalism and inanity. The COVID issue has drawn out the petty tyrants on the left but also the UN-world-government conspiracy theorists of the right, with actual state relief for desperate working people suffering from the lockdown being drowned out.
For Jewish gatekeepers of the phony right like Ezra Levant , "The Great Reset" is much more palatable and less dangerous than the real issue of the Great Replacement. Former Never Trumper Mark Levin has worked with Sean Hannity to scrub 2020 Trumpism of its anti-establishment and anti-globalist soul to try and transform it into another Tea Party style Reaganite collection point for false consciousness held together by fumes of Trump's personality cult.
There is a silver lining. As niches suffering from the two types of TDS -- Trump Derangement Syndrome and Trump Delusion Syndrome -- duke it out, the liberal kleptocracy is still having trouble restoring "normalcy."
The Biden Democrats are eager to betray and start purging the Bernie wing of their party on economic and foreign policy matters. The GOP, whose establishment has no organic support and never will, has decided to fake it until they make it and pretend like Trump was never born.
This forced reboot is bound to meet challenges in an era of high unemployment and social chaos. People are sick of voting for a "lesser of two evils."
There is lots of talk on the left and right about starting new parties to challenge the Wall Street uniparty. The Movement for a People's Party , an endeavor that has recruited big names like Jimmy Dore and Cornell West, is looking to establish itself and begin attacking the Democratic party from the left.
Meanwhile, right-populists who aren't hung up on Trump are beginning to talk of an "America First Party." The National Justice Party, a political construct that isn't afraid to appeal to white workers or transcend traditional ideas of left and right, is also starting to gain momentum.
In the battle of corn syrup vs soy, of stupid vs gay, we the people deserve better. The populi in populist can be described as being part of the radical center: left on economics and right on social issues. A white worker should not have to vote for the anti-white Democrats just to have a shot at affordable health care, nor should a rural family have to vote for the Paul Singer funded Zionist GOP in hopes of being treated with dignity. A grounded and united movement that explicitly rejects both parties and can obtain what we want must arise from the ashes of back-stabbed Trumpists and Bernie fans.
AnonStarter , says: November 24, 2020 at 5:43 am GMT • 4.6 days agonsa , says: November 24, 2020 at 6:16 am GMT • 4.6 days ago
The populi in populist can be described as being part of the radical center: left on economics and right on social issues. A white worker should not have to vote for the anti-white Democrats just to have a shot at affordable health care, nor should a rural family have to vote for the Paul Singer funded Zionist GOP in hopes of being treated with dignity. A grounded and united movement that explicitly rejects both parties and can obtain what we want must arise from the ashes of back-stabbed Trumpists and Bernie fans.
Sounds good, Mr. Striker.
May it come to fruition.
The median wage in the USA in 2019 was $34,000 / year. If Trumpstein had done even one tiny little, teensy weensy, itsy bitsy thing for the under $34k working poor .he would have easily retained enough votes to keep his job. Instead, his domestic policy goals centered around taking basic health insurance away from the working poor (even during a pandemic), while giving billions away to his wall street pals, his relatives, giant corporations, and of course his yid sponsors. Example: Fed Ex paid zero income tax in 2017, 2018, 2019. Let's see how long a modern society can function when the top 0.1% are worth more than the bottom 80%.
Nov 28, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org
vk , Nov 27 2020 13:27 utc | 107
Pushed by Pandemic, Amazon Goes on a Hiring Spree Without Equal
The First World is leaving the "sweet spot" of its capitalist development stage, marked by a relatively inflated petit-bourgeois middle class, and is reentering a proletarianization phase. Call it the reproletarianization of the First World.
Looks like Marx was right all along.
Nov 28, 2020 | www.unz.com
Watching the Dying Light , says: November 24, 2020 at 5:25 pm GMT • 4.1 days ago
You seem quite convinced that it was Tucker Carlson's version of events that was true concerning this phone call to Sidney Powell. You know she disputes this version. Also I read that Carlson did not make the call himself, but rather had a staffer do it.
One might be a little suspicious that perhaps a staffer put a little too much effort into getting Ms. Powell to appear on the show, and perhaps embellished or 'interpreted' the phone call out of concern for their job.
One might also consider it a bit petty and unprofessional to immediately report a rude phone call on the Carlson news program, and not once but twice.
Are we to believe that Sidney Powell is the only source who has ever been rude on a phone call with a staffer from the news media? Is it good journalism to publicly attack potential sources because they said no the first time you asked?
In my opinion it seems a bit hard to believe that Ms. Powell had a meltdown with either Carlson or a staffer on a phone call. She seems much more the type to just politely say goodbye and hang up.
But let's assume that she did have a meltdown. Given the circumstances and time crunch she's under, wouldn't a reasonable person assume she was acting badly because of stress and she probably didn't mean it?
Carlson couldn't wait longer than the next morning before he planned to publicly shame her for it? And in the middle of what must be, for her, the biggest and most important thing she's ever done?
What happened to Tucker Carlson's philosophy of kindness towards one another? And do you put any stock in the fact that so many people who watch (or watched) Tucker Carlson on a regular basis were genuinely shocked by what he did? I know I was.
Everything about this seems very strange. If a normally reasonable person like Powell made crazy sounding claims, why respond with such hostility? Does anybody remember the guy who built his own rocket so he could prove the Earth was flat? All we had to do was wait.
And as for these voting machine companies having ties to Venezuela in the past, well that's true. None other than Lou Dobbs on CNN reported this and the whole thing ended up in congressional hearings iirc.
I have no opinion about Sidney Powell's claims. She seems respectable enough to withhold judgement until she shows us what she's got. And if even a part of what she claims is true, I for one will be pretty concerned.
Nov 28, 2020 | www.theamericanconservative.com
Home / Articles / Economy / Deplorables, Or Expendables? ECONOMY Deplorables, Or Expendables?
Rubin offers some valuable, albeit well-known, critiques of globalized trade, but doesn't go far beyond that. (By momente/Shutterstock)
NOVEMBER 26, 2020|
12:01 AMNAPOLEON LINARTHATOS
Back in 2013 a group of Apple employees decided to sue the global behemoth. Every day, after they were clocking out, they were required to go through a corporate screening where their personal belongings were examined. It was a process required and administered by Apple. But Apple did not want to pay its employees for the time it had required them to spend. It could be anywhere from 40 to 80 hours a year that an employee spent going through that process. What made Apple so confident in brazenly nickel-and-diming its geniuses?
Jeff Rubin, author of The Expendables: How the Middle Class got Screwed by Globalization , has an answer to the above question that is easily deduced from the subtitle of his book. The socio-economic arrangements produced by globalization have made labor the most flexible and plentiful resource in the economic process. The pressure on the middle class, and all that falls below it, has been so persistent and powerful, that now " only 37 percent of Americans believe their children will be better off financially than they themselves are. Only 24 percent in Canada or Australia feel the same. And in France, that figure dips to only 9 percent." And "[i]n the mid-1980s it would have taken a typical middle-income family with two children less than seven years of income to save up to buy a home; it now takes more than ten years. At the same time, housing expenditures that accounted for a quarter of most middle-class household incomes in the 1990s now account for a third ."
The story of globalization is engraved in the " shuttered factories across North America, the boarded-up main streets, the empty union halls." Rubin does admit that there are benefits accrued from globalization, billions have been lifted up out of poverty in what was previously known as the third world, wealth has been created, certain efficiencies have been achieved. The question for someone in the western world is how much more of a price he's willing to pay to keep the whole thing going on, especially as we have entered a phase of diminishing returns for almost all involved.
As Joel Kotkin has written, "[e]ven in Asia, there are signs of social collapse. According to a recent survey by the Korea Institute for Health and Social Affairs, half of all Korean households have experienced some form of family crisis, many involving debt, job loss, or issues relating to child or elder care." And "[i]n "classless" China, a massive class of migrant workers -- over 280 million -- inhabit a netherworld of substandard housing, unsteady work, and miserable environmental conditions, all after leaving their offspring behind in villages. These new serfs vastly outnumber the Westernized, highly educated Chinese whom most Westerners encounter. " "Rather than replicating the middle-class growth of post–World War II America and Europe, notes researcher Nan Chen, 'China appears to have skipped that stage altogether and headed straight for a model of extraordinary productivity but disproportionately distributed wealth like the contemporary United States.'"
Although Rubin concedes to the globalist side higher GDP growth, even that does not seem to be so true for the western world in the last couple decades. Per Nicholas Eberstadt, in "Our Miserable 21st Century," "[b]etween late 2000 and late 2007, per capita GDP growth averaged less than 1.5 percent per annum." "With postwar, pre-21st-century rates for the years 2000–2016, per capita GDP in America would be more than 20 percent higher than it is today."
Stagnation seems to be a more apt characterization of the situation we are in. Fredrik Erixon in his superb The Innovation Illusion , argues that "[p]roductivity growth is going south, and has been doing so for several decades." "Between 1995 and 2009, Europe's labor productivity grew by just 1 percent annually." Noting that "[t]he four factors that have made Western capitalism dull and hidebound are gray capital, corporate managerialism, globalization, and complex regulation."
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Contrary to popular belief, globalization has functioned as a substitute for innovation and growth. With globalization on the march, the western ruling class could continue to indulge in its most preferred activities, regulation and taxation, in an environment where both of these political addictions appeared sustainable. Non-western elites could perpetuate their authoritarian regimes, garnering growth and legitimacy, from the access to the western markets. Their copy-and-paste method of "innovation" from western firms would fit well with an indigenous business class composed of mostly insiders and ex-regime apparatchiks.
There are plenty of criticisms that can be laid at the feet of globalization. The issue with Rubin's book is that is does not advance very much beyond some timeworn condemnations of it. One gets the sense that the value of this book is merely in its audacity to question the conventional wisdom on the issue at hand. Rubin, who is somewhat sympathetic to Donald Trump, seems to be much closer to someone like Bernie Sanders, especially an earlier version of Sanders that dared to talk about the debilitating effects of immigration on the working class.
Like Sanders, Rubin starts to get blurry as he goes from the condemnation phase to the programmatic offers available. What exactly would be his tariffs policy, how far he would go? What would be the tradeoffs of this policy? Where we could demarcate a reasonable fair environment for the worker and industry and where we would start to create another type of a stagnation trap for the whole economy? All these would be important questions for Rubin to grapple with and would give to his criticisms more gravitas.
It would have also been of value if he had dealt more deeply with the policies of the Trump administration. On the one hand, the Trump administration cracked down on illegal and legal immigration. It also started to use tariffs and other trade measures as a way to boost industry and employment. On the other hand, it reduced personal and corporate taxes and it deregulated to the utmost degree possible. It was a kind of 'walled' laisser-faire that seemed to work until Covid-19 hit. Real household income in the U.S. increased $4,379 in 2019 over 2018. It was "more income growth in one year than in the 8 years of Obama-Biden." And during Trump's time, the lowest paid workers started not to just be making gains, but making gains faster than the wealthy. "Low-wage workers are getting bigger raises than bosses" ran a CBS News headline .
Rubin seems to view tax cuts and deregulation as another giveaway to large corporations. But these large corporations are just fine with high taxation, since they have a choice as to when and where they get taxed. Regulation is also more of a tool than a burden for them. It's a very expedient means for eliminating competitors and competition, a useful barrier to entry for any upstart innovator that would upend the industry they are in. Besides, if high taxation and regulation were a kind of antidote to globalization, then France would be in a much better shape than it appears to be. But France seems to be doing worse than anybody else. In the aforementioned poll about if their "children will be better off financially than they themselves are" France was at the bottom in the group of countries that Rubin cited. The recent events with the yellow-vests movement indicate a very deep dissatisfaction and pessimism of its middle and working class.
Moreover, there does not seem to be much hostility or even much contention between government bureaucracies and the upper echelons of the corporate world. Something that Rubin's politics and economics would necessitate. And cultural and political like-mindedness between government bureaucracies and the managerial class of large corporations is not just limited to the mutual embrace of woke politics. It seems that there is a cross pollination of a much broader set of ideas and habits between bureaucrats and the managerial class. For instance, Erixon notes that "[c]orporate managers shy away from uncertainty but turn companies into bureaucratic entities free from entrepreneurial habits. They strive to make capitalism predictable." Striving for predictability is a very bureaucratic state of mind.
In Rubin's book, missed trends like that make his perspective to feel a bit dated. There is still valuable information in The Expendables . Rubin does know a lot about international trade deals. For instance, a point that is often ignored in the press about international trade agreements is that "[i]f you're designated a "developing" country, you get to protect your own industries with tariffs that are a multiple of those that developed economies are allowed to use to protect their workers." A rule that China exploits to the utmost.
Meanwhile, Apple, after its apparent lawsuit loss on the case with its employees in California, now seems committed to another fight with the expendables of another locale. The Washington Post reported that "Apple lobbyists are trying to weaken a bill aimed at preventing forced labor in China, according to two congressional staffers familiar with the matter, highlighting the clash between its business imperatives and its official stance on human rights." "The bill aims to end the use of forced Uighur labor in the Xinjiang region of China ." The war against the expendables never ends.
Napoleon Linarthatos is a writer based in New York.
Nov 28, 2020 | jordanrussiacenter.org
In Memory of Stephen Cohen All the Russias
Earlier this year, our friend and colleague Stephen Cohen passed away. His contributions to the field of Russian, East European, and Eurasian Studies will be felt for years to come. Professor Cohen was a historian, but his legacy extends far beyond his scholarly work. Every year, the Stephen Cohen Fellowship -- established on Professor Cohen's initiative and supported by Katrina vanden Heuvel and the Kat Foundation -- funds the graduate education for master's students in the Department of Russian & Slavic Studies at NYU. Professor Cohen has also helped enable doctoral students to conduct dissertation research in Russia through the Cohen-Tucker Fellowship .
As we prepare to celebrate Thanksgiving in the United States, we give thanks to Stephen Cohen for not only his work in the REEES field but for the generosity he, Katrina vanden Heuvel, and the Kat Foundation have shown to budding Russia scholars. We honor him today by publishing the testimonials of some of current and former students who have benefitted from Cohen Fellowships.
Natasha Bluth (Cohen Fellowship)
The Stephen Cohen Fellowship enabled me to continue my studies of the former Soviet Union, not only easing the financial burden of graduate school, but also providing the opportunity to merge journalistic training with area studies, engage with a wide range of scholars and regional specialists, and conduct field research in Ukraine. The support and encouragement Stephen Cohen offered at our annual fellowship alumni dinners also inspired me to pursue a PhD in sociology in order to explore post-Soviet civil society, nationalism, and gender from a social-scientific perspective.
Michael Coates (Cohen-Tucker Fellowship)
During the 2018-19 academic year, I held a Cohen-Tucker Dissertation Fellowship, which I used to fund over a year of archival research in Russia on the history of the Great Soviet Encyclopedia. The fellowship allowed me to visit more than a dozen archives in Moscow and Saint Petersburg, and to copy thousands of pages of original documents. Had I not been able to carry out this archival work, I would not have been able to write my dissertation. The travel that the Fellowship enabled was also personally significant to me, because I had never been to Russia before I arrived in Moscow for my research year, even though I had already been studying the country and its language for several years. It is one thing to read books about a particular place, but actually experiencing life there first-hand is quite another, and has been essential to the development of my understanding of the region. I am extremely grateful to Prof. Cohen and Ms. vanden Heuvel for their generosity in funding the next generation of Russia specialists.John V. Walsh • a day ago
Stephen F. Cohen performed a great service in the last four years as he relentlessly refuted the great Russiagate hoax which not only distorted our political life but seriously wounded US-Russia relations for years to come. That hoax is a threat to world peace and Prof. Cohen from the very first saw through it. Both in his writings for The Nation and his near weekly conversations with John Batchelor of ABC radio rebutted it clearly, eloquently and at times with good humor. How very much he is missed.
Nov 25, 2020 | www.nytimes.com
Ms. Powell did not have much of a reputation in conservative legal circles until last year when she took on the case of Michael T. Flynn, Mr. Trump's first national security adviser, who had pleaded guilty to lying to the F.B.I. but later sought to withdraw his plea. The case became something of a cause célèbre among many Trump loyalists, who have long insisted that the president and his allies were the target of nefarious "deep state" law enforcement and intelligence officials.
Ms. Powell, a native North Carolinian who began her legal career as an assistant federal prosecutor in Texas, certainly believed that. And through her aggressive defense of Mr. Flynn -- she often used incendiary rhetoric, accusing the F.B.I. of committing "atrocities" against her client -- she became an admired figure on the right and a frequent guest on conservative radio and television programs.
... ... ...
In a statement to The New York Times earlier this year, Ms. Powell said she had long considered "prosecutorial misconduct and overreach" a problem. Conspiracies within the American government have been a preoccupation of hers for some time: In 2014 she self-published a book that purports to be a seminal work in "exposing 'the Deep State.'"
The book arose from her work in private practice, where she spent years representing defendants in the Enron financial scandal, including the accounting firm Arthur Andersen and James A. Brown, a former executive at Merrill Lynch. During that time she began to impugn the motives of one of the federal prosecutors on the case, Andrew Weissmann, who went on to be a member of the special counsel team under Robert S. Mueller III, who led the investigation into the Trump campaign's ties to Russia.
... ... ...
In an interview last week on the top-rated "Rush Limbaugh Show" -- in which she spoke for nearly 20 minutes and faced no skepticism from the guest host, Mark Steyn -- Ms. Powell claimed that the voting machines in question had been designed to rig elections for the former ruler of Venezuela, Hugo Chávez, who died in 2013. They were "so hackable a 15-year-old could do it," she said. And she cited unnamed "math experts" she had supposedly consulted who told her how an algorithm added votes for President Trump to Joseph R. Biden Jr.'s totals.
In an interview the day before on Fox Business, Ms. Powell also said the conspiracy involved "dead people" who voted "in massive numbers" -- again offering no proof -- and described how fraudulent paper ballots were also part of the scheme.
Speaking early last week to the right-wing radio host Mark Levin, who has the fourth-largest audience in talk radio, Ms. Powell said she had obtained an affidavit from someone purportedly present when the scheme was hatched by pro-Chávez forces in Venezuela to rig his elections.
Because of her involvement in the Flynn case, the pro-Trump media often presented her as an expert with unimpeachable credentials.
"Sidney Powell is no joke," declared one Breitbart article published last week, which mentioned her early career as a federal prosecutor and her work for Mr. Flynn. Mr. Limbaugh, too, told his audience last week that he seriously doubts she would be putting her credibility on the line if she hadn't uncovered serious wrongdoing.
Other Trump allies were less convinced that her claims should be taken seriously. Tucker Carlson of Fox News said last week that when he pressed Ms. Powell, she failed to produce any evidence to support the elaborate conspiracy she purported to have uncovered. His dissent was not appreciated by the president's defenders, or by Ms. Powell, who said Mr. Carlson had been "very insulting, demanding and rude" to her.
Despite initial praise from the president, who announced less than two weeks ago that she had been added to his team of "wonderful lawyers," it was never clear during her brief time with the campaign what her job was supposed to be. Her efforts on behalf of the Trump campaign appeared to be largely limited to public relations She has defended the president and attacked the integrity of the vote solely on Twitter, on television and at news conferences, acting more as a publicity agent than a lawyer.
She has said she plans to file a suit in Georgia but hasn't yet. It is unclear whether that work will continue now that the Trump campaign has cut her loose.
Jeremy W. Peters covers national politics. His other assignments in his decade at The Times have included covering the financial markets, the media, New York politics and two presidential campaigns. He is also an MSNBC contributor.
Nov 25, 2020 | www.theamericanconservative.com
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There is a lot of bad reporting in the media, but a lot of the blame rests on Trump, his legal team and the magnitude, complexity and implausibility of their claims
Trump's lawyers spent a lot of time at the podium lecturing the media on their "fake" reporting on the fraud claims. No doubt, after four years of mainstream media malpractice, they have reason for making this claim.
However, the moralistic lecturing was myopic and counterproductive, simply because even honest journalists (if there are any left) have been left with their heads spinning by the quantity and magnitude of the claims the Trump administration is putting out there right now.
Any honest person approaching the fraud claims without a pre-determined position on their validity (something that is, unfortunately, all too rare) has inevitably been left feeling overwhelmed and confused. There's just too much information. There are too many conflicting claims. There isn't enough time to adjudicate each one of them properly. Not only is some degree of media skepticism to be expected, it's actually the only responsible thing to do , given the complexity and magnitude of the fraud claims, and the stakes at play.
One of the central claims being made by Trump's legal team is that there exists a vast national and global conspiracy involving a network of shadowy electronic voting companies, communist regimes, foreign dictators, vote routing, switching and deleting involving complex algorithms, and the complicity of numerous Democratic governors and election officials. The evidence proffered so far to support this claim is a single affidavit by an unnamed Venezuelan official, and a number of non-specific allegations of data anomalies on election night.
Should we -- should the media -- simply assent to these claims, based solely upon the heat of Sidney Powell's rhetoric, and a single affidavit? How seriously should we even take them, given that the clock is ticking, and it is hard to imagine the Trump team actually proving these allegations by the safe harbor deadlines, whether they are true or not? How much effort should they expend chasing every new bone Sidney Powell and MAGA surrogates throw their way?
"Dianne Feinstein's husband! George Soros! Scytl! German servers! Raids by U.S. military! Spain! Hugo Chavez! Nancy Pelosi's chief of staff! Bill Gates! Cuba!" And so on and so forth.
It's exhausting just trying to keep up. However you look at it, much of it is extraordinarily confusing and, frankly, prima facie unbelievable. Of course, truth is sometimes stranger than fiction. Powell could be right. But how likely is it that all her increasingly wild allegations should come together just as she has laid them out? And how surprised should we be that people outside the MAGA camp are skeptical?
3) The whole thing feels like intellectual blackmail
Rudy Giuliani complained that his team is preparing and presenting cases that would normally take months, if not years to prepare and argue in normal circumstances. The media should give them time to make their case, and wait for the evidence, he said.
But who's fault is this? The Trump administration had four years to investigate Dominion, Smartmatic, and the dangers of electronic voting in general. They could have convened bipartisan committees to investigate voter fraud and the vulnerabilities of these voting machines.
In 2016, even after he won, Trump claimed that there were millions of fraudulent votes. If he really believed that, why didn't he do something meaningful about it while he was in office? Posting about it on Twitter doesn't count.
Sidney Powell has raised some good questions about electronic voting, if only that people will readily believe wild claims of fraud using it. These questions should be pursued, however, a few days ago, most of us had never even heard of Dominion, Smartmatic and Scytl, etc. Now we're being told that we must simply believe Powell's theory that these companies stole the election. Countless MAGA followers are posting that they are absolutely sure , without the slightest shadow of a doubt, that Dominion is behind the electoral theft. This feels mad.
"She's a competent lawyer!" her supporters say. "She's brilliant, she's honest! She's a patriot!" Maybe she is all of these things, but I'm not going to make a judgment about the outcome of a presidential election, or assent to a vast, complex, and highly implausible theory, based upon such thin gruel.
I need time. I need evidence. I need witnesses and counter-witnesses, examined and cross-examined. And being told by the MAGA crowd that I must assent to the theory, and to declare certainty that an election is invalid and that a coup has been perpetrated, without any of these, feels like intellectual blackmail.
The simple fact is, this process should not be happening under the gun like this. And that's on Trump, not the media.
4) Trump's legal team is making an amateur error in its approach to convincing the public
A thousand doubts does not constitute proof. Amateur debaters often fall into the trap of trying to win a debate by listing as many arguments as they can come up with. The mistake is in thinking that people are convinced by sheer quantities of evidence.
In reality, this almost always backfires. When you pound people over the head with argument after argument, they tend to become confused, bewildered, and, in the end, resentful. They resent not having the chance to really think through any one claim or argument in detail. Inevitably they begin to suspect that you're just trying to pull a fast one on them. Usually, they're right.
Trump and his legal team have fallen into this trap. At the press conference, they made repeated reference to the "hundreds" of sworn affidavits they have gathered, and the large number of their lawsuits. However, while hundreds of affidavits may be "evidence," in the legal sense of the term, they do not amount to proof.
A journalist for The Blaze reviewed the affidavits filed in Michigan and noted that many of them do not actually contain allegations of fraud. Instead, they often have to do with circumstantial things, such as how GOP challengers felt they were being "treated" by election officials, or described "fraudulent" behavior that could plausibly be interpreted as election officials following normal procedures that GOP challengers simply failed to understand.
Maybe some of the affidavits obtained by Trump's legal team contain slam-dunk proof of widespread fraud, but if they do, they are being lost in the noise.
Expert debaters know that the best way to win an argument is to select only the very best arguments, and to focus on those. If you go for quantity of evidence, inevitably you will include low quality evidence in your arguments. Your audience, which is not so much weighing each piece of evidence (an impossible task), as whether you are the sort of person who should be trusted, will often only remember your bad or weak arguments. The result is that they will write off everything else you say, as coming from a fundamentally unreliable source.
Trump and his surrogates have raised important questions about election integrity. Unfortunately, however, they have also repeated and promoted numerous false claims. Starting on election night, Trump began retweeting every claim of fraud that came across his Twitter feed, without any effort to fact check them. Many of them have subsequently been proven to be baseless.
It should come as no surprise that those who are not already on board the Trump Train are reacting to each new claim made by Trump with deep skepticism. The tragedy is that some of these claims may be valid. However, Trump's carelessness with the truth has fatally undercut his ability to lead a productive inquiry into voter fraud.
5) The fraud 'investigation' is being conducted ass-backwards
Trump, his legal team, and MAGA supporters all began with the conviction that the election was stolen. Then, they went in search of the proof.
People are skeptical of the effort, because that's the worst possible way to go about an investigation. The point of conducting an investigation is that you do not know the answer. You have a hypothesis or a suspicion, but not proof.
The Trump admin has, from the very beginning, claimed absolute certitude. Unfortunately, this isn't just bad epistemology, it's also insanely reckless, since, by definition, the very claim calls into doubt the very existence of democracy in America.
The word " coup " is being tossed around by MAGA followers carelessly. To say that's a loaded word is an understatement. But Trump and his team have left themselves no escape route. Even if incontrovertible evidence shows up at some point that the election was not stolen, a significant portion of the MAGA crowd will always believe that it was. At this point, there is nothing that could convince them otherwise.
Clearly, having a large body of citizens who believe that their government is illegitimate comes with potentially catastrophic unforeseen consequences. Nobody in the Trump administration or MAGA crowd seems to be giving any thought to this. Damn the torpedoes.
Given that it's Trump, we can expect him to throw out outrageous claims without making any real effort to determine if they're really true. However, it is our responsibility to prioritize truth over political expediency. Whatever our political affiliations, our duty is to investigate with indifference to the outcome, rather than seeking ways to substantiate our personal preferences. When faced with a choice between truth and winning, choose truth, every time.
6) The U.S. electoral system is a mess
Rudy Giuliani has at least this much right. The evidence Giuliani and his team have collected of conflicting processes and procedures around the country, the reports of irregularities, the evidence of actual fraud, and the ongoing efforts of Democrats to push less secure voting methods, may not be sufficient to actually overturn the result. But it absolutely is sufficient to suggest that the whole system is a mess, and vulnerable to exploitation.
While I believe the odds of Trump's fraud claims leading to the election being overturned are slim (although I am keeping an open mind on the question), we can at least hope that the whole sordid episode leads to some serious and much-needed bipartisan electoral reform, so that this does not happen again.
But in the end, that's only going to happen if cooler heads prevail, and reckless rhetoric only leads the country down a dark road of further division and strife.John Jalsevac is currently working towards a PhD in philosophy. Prior to grad school, he worked for over a decade as a journalist, editor, and pro-life activist. His previous journalism and creative writing have appeared in The Public Discourse, Gilbert! Magazine, Dappled Thing, LifeSiteNews, and others.
muzan-e • 4 days agokalendjay muzan-e • 4 days ago
The "conspiracy" gets more interesting the more deeply you look into it. For instance :
A government body exists that certifies voting machines and software as being 'okay to use' by individual states. There's a voluntary aspect to this, I believe -- states can choose to ignore the certification, yeah? But that doesn't matter, because the conspiracy is about Dominion , and Dominion was certified safe.
And this means that potentially complicit in the communist/globalist/Soros conspiracy to overthrow Trump are:
* Dominion, obvs.
* Those heads of state that okayed the use of Dominion machines (possibly)
* Those members of that government body most directly responsible for repeatedly certifying Dominion products
* The laboratory (Wyle, almost always) which repeatedly tested and cleared Dominion products
And if Wyle is itself on the take from communists/globalists/Soros, shouldn't we reasonably assume that every other voting product they've tested and cleared is therefore suspect?
And if that election commission is on the take from communists/globalists/Soros, mustn't we assume that they are only certifying voting products which serve their agenda?
And should we not question those most responsible for advancing the responsible parties in that commission to their present exalted state?
And what of Wyle's owners? (National Technical Systems) Should we not be particularly concerned by their voluntary acquisition of a laboratory group that exists as a tool of communists/globalists/Soros and sways elections on their behalf?
... ... ...John Woodard muzan-e • 2 days ago
We need a public hearing all right. Like Watergate. Reminds me of when Sam Ervin said the telephone is the instrument of the devil. Wiser words I cannot think of.Aurelian • 4 days ago
Every precinct in the United States uses a paper trail to ensure results can be audited. Every single vote cast involves a piece of paper with voter selections on it. In Georgia, where Dominion systems were used, the hand audit produced virtually identical results. That was a full hand recount. If the tally machines were switching votes, even a partial audit would pick up on that immediately.John Woodard Aurelian • 2 days ago
Very good article here, and does a good job explaining why so many of us have trouble taking the claims of fraud seriously. Especially given Trump's long estrangement with truth generally, and his tendency to promote conspiracy theories, especially those which stand to benefit him if believed (see QAnon.)
The issues with electronic voting machines have been known for years, and I've seen the case made convincingly by commentators left, right, and center. I'm certainly glad to have cast a paper ballot in the last election, as everyone in my state does. Hopefully a silver lining from this mess will be the adoption of more robust paper balloting systems nationwide.Aurelian John Woodard • 2 days ago • edited
Everybody casts a paper ballot in one way or another. In the few places that have voting machines (and I think it's very few honestly), a paper ballot is generated for auditing purposes.Martha Smith John Woodard • 13 hours ago
Per my understanding, electronic voting machines are fairly widespread and fall into several categories. While some states do require a paper ballot to be generated for auditing purposes, there are some states like Kentucky and Indiana that have direct electronic voting without that capability. It is worth noting that none of those states are the swing states now in contention though, and that they are invariably red states.
See here: https://ballotpedia.org/Vot...EyeProvidence • 4 days ago • edited
My jurisdiction briefly switched to all-electronic machines, then quickly returned to the paper ballots read by optical scanning device . . . a much better system.EliteCommInc. EyeProvidence • 4 days ago
"The mistake is in thinking that people are convinced by sheer quantities of evidence."
It works for the democrats, that all they ever do is 'level charges without evidence' in the MSM, and where Tucker was attempting to take Ms. Powell and it seems your on board like all the other conservatives tell us, we have to accept Biden, while we look into voting irregularities and fraud, sometime in the future [post GA's Jan 5th 2nd electronic vote steal].disqus_5GSc0nKbtM EyeProvidence • a day ago
I am going to eschew the question about Mr. Carlson and Ms Powell ----
But your observations about what works is accurate. It's a tactic that does work. It works for prosecutors How do you get 50 million people to believe the Russians actually invaded election boards and their processes across the country.
And yet, here we have vast irregularities in differing parts of the country. I think there is a case for fraud, but whether or not that is demonstrated, there is clearly a case for an audit on both machines and mail in ballots. and there absolutely needs to be an audit of votes to registered voters and no one needs to a HS diploma to comprehend that it's near impossible for all mail in ballots to be for x candidate and less than a 6th grade education to know that if you have 2000 registered voters or even a population of 2000 that the total number of votes is never going to exceed 100% -- if it does, there's serious problem.Scott • 4 days ago • edited
What, no comment forthcoming from you about the terrible, awful, totally crooked election that happened in 2016, with millions and millions of fraudulent votes--- that Trump never looked into? In 4 years? At all?
Until he lost this election? He's been whining about how this election was going to be rigged, couldn't he have skipped a few golf games to actually look into it before it reared its ugly head and kicked him out of the White House? Sure, sure.LgVt • 4 days ago
No They haven't ! This thing is just to show President Trump won. And the election was fix. Everyone knows there not going to change anything.
The deep state was never going to let this to happen again. In 2016 they got caught with there thump up there ***
this time they were ready.
President Trump biggest mistake was his picks. AG Barr and Wray both big time never trampers. We the people sound nice but it's 🐂Kent • 4 days ago
One thing that seems to have gotten lost in the fog--and that definitely got lost by this author--is that Giuliani and Powell are working on effectively two separate cases. Both are working for Trump, and both are working against Biden et al with regards to this election, but there is a clear line of demarcation between the two. Powell's focus is primarily, if not solely, on Dominion and the electronic case, while Giuliani's primary focus is on alleged physical fraud.
It makes no sense to assume that Powell's investigation should have begun four years ago, and then use that as a basis to sneer, as this author does, at Giuliani--whose investigation could not possibly have begun before November 4--for complaining about having to compress a type of investigation that typically takes years into less than a month.
I'm not sure what Powell has. Some of the anomalies she has obliquely referred to are already out there, if you look for them, and they are indeed suspicious (e.g. successive batches of votes, often 10 or more in a row, all with the exact same ratio of Biden-to-Trump votes--a statistical, if not literal, impossibility). However, it doesn't look like those would be enough to swing the election, because even in her telling, if the race had been closer, the Dominion irregularities would not have been discovered at all. The electronic interference was significant, but it wasn't what made the difference.
The meat of this case, with the potential to flip the results, lies with old fashioned physical fraud--ballot-manufacturing and box-stuffing--and Giuliani's mad scramble to find enough evidence in time.
My gut says he won't make it.
There are very strong indications that what Giuliani and the Trump team suspect did indeed happen. Most notable is the Democrats' brazen interference with GOP poll-watchers in multiple states; it is inexplicable if they did not have something to hide. But by the same token, that very interference successfully hid whatever it was that they did, and because of that, they have already gotten away with it--the evidence that Giuliani needs is gone forever.
The room is filled with smoke, but the fire has already been extinguished--and without the fire, Trump can't win.REM Kent • 4 days ago
"The mistake is in thinking that people are convinced by sheer quantities of evidence."
Evidence, philosophically, is something that is true. If I have an apple in my hand and I reach out and drop it, I can truthfully tell you that it will fall towards the ground. It is evidence of the existence of gravity. I can't see gravity. But I can see the apple fall (and anything else I drop). So can everyone in the world.
An affidavit is not evidence. It is a statement that someone is claiming is true. The statement may or may not be true. So a lot of affidavits is not a "sheer quantity of evidence". It's not evidence at all. Trump supporters need to understand that. And this is why Trump continues to have these court cases thrown out: he is not presenting any real evidence of fraud. Why? Because there isn't any.eddie parolini • 4 days ago
You've got this wrong because your definition of evidence is wrong. An affidavit IS evidence.The truthfullness or importance of it is something decided in court. It is evidence just much as a fingerprint at a crime scene is evidence. The relevance of the fingerprint evidence still has to be determined in court.Adriana Pena eddie parolini • 3 days ago
What's most obvious to me is that the lawyers making these far-fetched claims didn't themselves believe the claims. The effort was geared to flood the zone, so to speak, to create confusion and doubt resulting in state legislatures stepping in to settle electoral vote allocations.
Sowing doubt this way might be acceptable in criminal court, where defense lawyers are trying to establish reasonable doubt, however, here the objective should be to determine what happened, and not inventing things that might have happened.
Soros, Chavez, Spain and communists? I believe the term is "jumping the shark."Miles R. • 4 days ago
Those lawyers risk being charged with barratry. And it could cost them their licenses.Carlo Cristofori • 4 days ago
Mr. Jalsevac confuses two different facts under heading no. 6, "The U.S. electoral system is a mess." (1) The US electoral system is not a genuine system at all but an aggregate of electoral systems that vary by state and even by county. (2) Some of these systems are untrustworthy. It is clear that the second fact is cause for concern and in need of remedy. It is not so clear that the first one is. The diversity of electoral systems is a feature that contributes to the difficulty of manipulating national electoral results. It is the chief reason why the Trump team has had to resort to grotesque conspiracistic fantasies to maintain its claim that Trump is the legitimate winner.Feral Finster Yourcenar • 4 days ago • edited
"Durable, hand marked paper ballots must be established as the national standard for democratic elections in the United States. While using paper may sound antiquated, the consensus among election security experts is that nothing else provides the needed reliability,security, and transparency. Durable, voter marked paper ballots are appropriate technology for public elections....Hand Counted Paper Ballots are considered the 'Gold Standard' of democratic elections" ~ National Election Defense Coalition https://www.electiondefense...marku52 Feral Finster • 4 days ago
Are there any electronic voting machines in Team D-controlled states? How did they get there? Did they sneak in across the border? Which political party held the presidency from 2008-2016? Were they pushing relentlessly for paper ballots, hand counted in public? For that matter, following the 2016 election, I heard lots of conspiracy theory talk from Team D, but little in the way advocating for paper ballots, hand-counted in public.
The Senate report was long on words, light on specifics. Great, if continuing a new cold war is your objective. Note that the House did not impeach on that basis, after two years and change of promising russiagate bombshells that never came.gnt Feral Finster • 4 days ago
Both parties are in favor of hackable machines when they can get their hands on them. Neither advocates for clearly transparent elections.gnt • 4 days ago
According to this article, there are 8 states still using voting machines that produce no paper trail. It's not a long article, but I extracted this list:
"eight states that will use some form of paperless voting in 2020: Texas, Louisiana, Tennessee, Mississippi, Kansas, Indiana, Kentucky and New Jersey. "
https://thehill.com/policy/...gnt • 4 days ago
There have been Democrats complaining about electronic voting machines for at least the last 20 years. You're a bit late to the party, but you're welcome to join. Our democracy works best when citizens are willing to work together toward goals on which they agree, regardless of whether or not they agree on all goals.
I would also be glad to see bipartisan electoral reform, but only if includes measures taken to protect votes before the actual voting starts. Some of the voter suppression measures we.ve seen in the last few years are:
- Purging of voter rolls near an election to keep voters from having a chance to vote
- Implementing postal procedures to reduce the speed of mail delivery to make it more difficult to vote by mail
- Removing mail sorting machines and post office drop boxes to make it more difficult to vote by mail
- Reducing the number of polling sites in areas populated by the other political party to complicate voting in person
- Rejecting mailed in ballots because trivial differences in the signature, such as a missing middle initial.
All of the Republican handwringing about "voter fraud" in the election seems to boil down to complaints that the judges stopped their efforts to steal the election. Some of that gets dressed up with pontification about the importance of the credibility of the election. The credibility of an election is supremely important, but voter suppression damages that credibility as much as voter fraud.Mark Thomason • 3 days ago
I noticed you did not mention the Ramsland affidavit in your discussion of the competence of Trump's legal team. The affidavit attempts to identify areas in Michigan in which more votes were cast than the number of registered voters. Unfortunately, all the examples provided were in Minnesota. That does not suggest thorough research. In addition, the areas listed in the affidavit tend to be in very Republican areas of Minnesota, suggesting that any voter fraud may be as likely to be Republican as it is to be Democratic.Annie from Alaska Mark Thomason • 3 days ago
"Keeping copies of the physical ballots does nothing to assuage these concerns"
I disagree. Here in Michigan we do regular hand checks of randomly chosen scanners, and of all of them if any problem arises. It has been remarkably accurate in my town.
The opposite of such scanning is prolonged counting, by fallible humans some of them partisan and fighting with other partisans. I don't see advantage there.
But yes, hacking of any electronic device is a monster problem, and must be addressed by regular and randomized physical confirmation, just as is done with any quality control issue.Mark Thomason Annie from Alaska • 3 days ago
To be effective against fraud the count needs to be compelled by law and done on a truly random sampling of ballots until statistical near-certainty of the result through hand-counting alone is achieved, falling back to a count of all ballots if the election is close.
Optional procedures executed in creative ways by goofy partisans is what "regular hand checks" sounds like to me, though I may be wrong.
I agree it's not worthless to save the ballots, and I'd even agree with you far enough to disagree with the author and say it's possible to design a good manual-check procedure. But I read what he said as a simplification of the truth: in 2016 there was so much sillyness in the law and the implementation of recount procedures that it'd be better if the machines weren't there at all, and I doubt that's changed.Johnson • 3 days ago
When it is close, we by law have an automatic 100% recount of machine scanned ballots by hand. That is what was done in 2016. That was discontinued by agreement of both political parties after the initial round of those counts showed zero error. Zero. By agreement. Thus, it can be done. But you are correct about the sampling idea, and the need for uniform enforceable law on the matter.John Seiler • 3 days ago
Now we're being told that we must simply believe Powell's theory that these companies stole the election.
No, you must either do your own investigating to try and ascertain the truth, (which NO media outlet seems to be doing) or keep an open mind that Powell will be able to prove what she says. Powell is not some two-bit lawyer. She's a seasoned federal prosecutor putting a lot on the line in making these claims. Grant her a modicum of respect in entertaining the possibility that she can back up what she says.
Also, the Trump campaign has filed exactly 3, and now 4 lawsuits - not 30-something as is continually and falsely reported and regurgitated by the media. The other lawsuits are by supporters and allies, but not Trump's lawyers. Yes, it's hard to keep up, but YOUR JOB is to at least try. Thank you.Thomas Storck • 3 days ago
I suggest young Master Jalsevac spend a couple of years living in one of our fine major cities to see how things really are run outside of political philosophy books.Woland Thomas Storck • 3 days ago
One of the oddest things about this is that in the past, particularly in 2004, many Democrats charged that the Republicans had stolen the election, particularly in Ohio. Google: 2004 election stolen. You will find a lot of hits. Does anyone remember Diebold voting machines? Are they still in use? Were they manipulated on behalf of Republicans, then or later? I have no idea. But I want to make a few points: 1. Liberals have at times complained loudly about stolen elections and the ease of manipulating electronic results by various Republican-connected people. 2. Whether these were true or not have they ever been sufficiently investigated? 3. Why, now is it only a vast liberal conspiracy that is alleged to exist, and not perhaps the still existing conservative conspiracy from 2004? In November 2005 Mother Jones reviewed a book, Fooled Again: How the Right Stole the 2004 Election & Why They'll Steal the Next One TooKevinS • 3 days ago • edited
The voting machine division of Diebold was taken over by Dominion Voting Systems. That's the easiest conspiracy theory in history. The real question, if you want to believe, is why the Republicans sold their election-stealer to the Democrats.Robert Gardner • 3 days ago
The Judge's decision in the PA case Rudy "argued." He is a absolute disgrace!
The full decision is here:
"In other words, Plaintiffs ask this Court to disenfranchise almost seven million voters. This Court has been unable to find any case in which a plaintiff has sought such a drastic remedy in the contest of an election, in terms of the sheer volume of votes asked to be invalidated. One might expect that when seeking such a startling outcome, a plaintiff would come formidably armed with compelling legal arguments and factual proof of rampant corruption, such that this Court would have no option but to regrettably grant the proposed injunctive relief despite the impact it would have on such a large group of citizens.
That has not happened. Instead, this Court has been presented with strained legal arguments without merit and speculative accusations, unpled in the operative complaint and unsupported by evidence. In the United States of America, this cannot justify the disenfranchisement of a single voter, let alone all the voters of its sixth most populated state. Our people, laws, and institutions demand more. At bottom, Plaintiffs have failed to meet their burden to state a claim upon which relief may be granted. Therefore, I grant Defendants' motions and dismiss Plaintiffs' action with prejudice."Hannibal Barca Robert Gardner • 3 days ago
You know, this kind of reasonable and thoughtful writing is why, as a liberal, I like coming over here to the dark side of town to see what's going on. Even while struggling to present an open mind, he admits to being buried in the silliness of it all. A good read. Not surprised to see all these calls for crucifixion in the comments.Robert Gardner Hannibal Barca • 3 days ago
You know, this kind of reasonable and thoughtful writing .......
It is neither reasonable or thoughtful. It pretends to be condemning the defense while pretending that they would otherwise have a case. And he is refusing to acknowledge that the why Trump has to turn to Rudy - his last resort - is because the reputable lawyers he had on his team are refusing to make bogus claims in court; to be fair, so does Rudy, but he is willing to make them to the press and they are not.
Even while struggling to present an open mind, he admits to being buried in the silliness of it all.
You are doing what Liberals so often do. They are so hungry for a Republican who is not calling them names and willing to admit that Trump is at fault, that they completely miss the point that the "admission" is trying to make. When Comey admitted that Hillary Clinton omitted no indictable offense, they praised him for his "fairness". But he was not being fair at all. He would have to be an evil crook to indict the nominee of one of our major parties when he knew she could not be convicted. But he broke every rule of propriety and launched into a condemnation that handed Trump what he needed to win the election. So this writer admitted that Trump is making no case . So what? You seem to have missed the fact that he is falsely claiming that Trump does have case to make. And that claim is utterly baseless!
I am not a partisan. I detest political parties. But I also detest seeing partisans complimented for being non-partisan for simply not being on the raving extreme of their party. It lowers the standard of what it beings to be non-partisan. Non-partisan means to make judgements consistently on principle, applying the same standards to everyone. I expect that many Republicans will read my post and conclude that I am being partisan - because that is taken nowadays to mean "condemns my party". But I get accused just as often by Democrats to being a Republican, so that is alright with me. But in so far as this particular quarrel is concerned, President Trump has no case at all. The Pennsylvania elections were run be declared Republicans. Prominent Republicans, and they gave both Republican Senators more votes. They counted the legal votes as they were cast. They ran a fair, honest and honorable election!John Woodard Robert Gardner • 2 days ago
Thanks for the magnificent reply, 414 words, all thoughtful. You may have me there in your sterner criticism of Rod's equivocation about Trump, but consider the audience, after all. As for being a liberal hungry for a conservative who is not an asshole, guilty as charged. You make a good point that Rod still seems still to yearn for Trump to have a case to make and that is true, but I think Rod is fairly conflicted in this and other conundrums conservatives must find themselves as the whole enterprise sinks into hopelessness and tawdry hopelessness at that. It is a hard row to hoe, after all. I never said he was non-partisan, just a poor conservative religious guy trying to make his way in the difficult world while continuing to try to be a decent man. It is what is endearing about his writing to me sometimes. But I thank you for this response, it shows both feeling and intelligence.
This is not the dark side. There are way darker places than TAC.
Nov 25, 2020 | theconservativetreehouse.com
David Vicknair , November 18, 2020 at 12:12 amMaximus-Cassius , November 18, 2020 at 9:50 am
Unfortunately IMHO, the Kraken was either a careless misspeak or a bluff to shake the trees to see if a whistleblower would fall out. If the later, it failed. If the former, I am inclined to give Sidney a break. She has done yeoman's work for Flynn. And so the Kraken seems destined to remain a creature of Scandinavian lore and Hollywood movies. I wish it were not so. The Dominion software apparently is easily hacked and allows votes to be directly manipulated without a trace. Hard to make a case without an audit trail. I wonder whether the outcry from MAGA supporters will be sufficient to encourage states to choose a more secure vendor or will Dominion still be in widespread use during the midterms? Kemp, Raffensberger and company should be ridden out of GA on a rail after a good tar and feathering. Other states have their own corrupt actors who should receive the same consideration. They all have sold us out -- if the Dems take the Senate, even to slavery under socialism -- for 30 pieces of silver. As for Kemp and Raffensberger, in a different age I might have suggested an appointment with a high, sturdy branch in one of GA's many 100 plus years old live oaks.President-Elect TwoLaine , November 17, 2020 at 9:33 pm
"Releasing the Kraken" would be Trump invoking BOTH the Insurrection Act AND his 2018 EO protecting against foreign intervention in our elections.
Will it happe? Who knows, but if Trump is to survive, IMO, that is his ONLY card left to play.President-Elect TwoLaine , November 17, 2020 at 10:23 pm
It's going to be a bloodbath, on all levels.JustDoItNow , November 17, 2020 at 9:28 pm
As I listened to Lin's interview today I tho't that there must be something in the Southern water. Both he and Sidney have that Southern drawl. Very genteel, polished and extremely intelligent.
I am a very brave soul, but I don't think I would want to go up against either of them in a court of law. 🙂GB Bari , November 18, 2020 at 12:03 am
I forget who it was, either Lou or Tucker, that ended their interview telling Sidney half jokingly to remember to lock her doors at night.
Please remember to PRAY God's protection for this wonderful woman!
Liked by 27 peoplePvt. Idaho , November 18, 2020 at 1:37 am
I have no doubt the President has put a very capable guard team around Sidney & family.
Liked by 1 personUniPartySlayer , November 17, 2020 at 9:37 pm
It was Mark Levin who told her.President-Elect TwoLaine , November 17, 2020 at 10:04 pm
When are they going to lay out the case? Lin Wood and Sidney have been making serious statements. They have reputations beyond reproach. I believe them when they say they have the goods. It's like they have to get the election called for Trump or they will surely be political prisoners.President-Elect TwoLaine , November 17, 2020 at 10:49 pm
Count on it! And DEFINITELY 2018.
IF you watch the movie "Kill Chain: The Cyber War on America's Elections"* you will see that a steal was supposed to happen in Florida that day and it got thwarted, before it got started,
PLUS, they didn't have the mail in ballot scheme in place yet to back up their theft back then. China Virus was their plandemic to make that happen, and to get the cash from the Care$ Act to get machines for everyone.
*"(2020)From voter registration to counting ballots, data security expert Harri Hursti examines how hackers can influence and disrupt the U.S. election system."jessetmims , November 17, 2020 at 10:33 pm
This is the video I took it from. This is the Eric Coomer Whistleblower.
Liked by 1 personJames Urso , November 17, 2020 at 11:03 pm
@ Right to reply In my opinion, the Democrats SUCCESSFULLY stole JFK's election, at least one of Bill Clinton's, and BOTH of Obama's.Ospreyzone , November 18, 2020 at 6:46 am
Love Sidney Powell but that interview did not give me a lot of confidence. I sure hope she has some solid evidence. Doesn't sound like she has much though. Don't have much time left.
Biggest heist in the history of the US and nothing can be done about it is sickening. Barr and Wray should be ashamed of themselves for letting something like this happen on their watch. They did nothing. Thanks to them the constitution is now worth nothing. The rights are gone. Law and order is gone. We are on our own.
How do Barr and Wray even look at themselves in the mirror?
Finally, I found out from this interview where I could send money to support this legal effort. I'm tired of the RNC doing nothing. Sidney Powell will get my direct support now.
DefendingtheRepublic.org – is the right place.
Nov 25, 2020 | www.theamericanconservative.com
According to Time : "in addressing the causes and consequences of this pandemic – and its cruelly uneven impact – the elephant in the room is extreme income inequality. How big is this elephant? A staggering $50 trillion. That is how much the upward redistribution of income has cost American workers over the past several decades." Economics as a zero sum game in other words
Nov 23, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org
Featherless , Nov 22 2020 18:18 utc | 26
An idea just occurred to me that might explain the "Dominion machines/Venezuela" connection :
If Venezuela is widely (bipartisanly) considered "electoral fraudsters", that taints these machines.
That makes IMPLEMENTING these machines a few years later in the US a WILLFUL electoral crime.
Featherless , Nov 22 2020 19:17 utc | 35Stonebird , Nov 22 2020 19:37 utc | 38
bevin, you're missing my point.
Here's an analogy : imagine the blues and reds both agree that I am a notorious thief, even if it's only a false narrative. Then they hire me as a security guard. That would be willfully, knowingly hiring a criminal, which would be criminal, not because of the facts, but because of the logic.
A couple of thoughts about the Venzuela gambit. Evidently Tucker Carson wanted Sydney to tell him all about the "Dominion" vote flipping in a public interview. Which would have been tantamount to giving away all the potential Republican case, and given the Democrats prior knowledge of what to expect. A no-go. Mentioning "Venezuela-Cuba" could have the effect of heading off a direct civil war if the US Dems and Repubs have a" common enemy" to blame. (Too late for Russia, China too touchy, not many other major targets). Note that Venezuela has a paper trail created at the same time as the electronic vote...
Nov 23, 2020 | www.rt.com
Trump's legal team distances itself from Sidney Powell after she suggests that Georgia's GOP governor conspired to help Biden win 23 Nov, 2020 00:58 / Updated 46 minutes ago Get short URL FILE PHOTO © REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst 15 Follow RT on Donald Trump's top lawyers disavowed Sidney Powell just three days after she joined them at a presser to help outline the president's election-fraud allegations, and hours after she lobbed fraud allegations at Georgia's governor.
"Sidney Powell is practicing law on her own," senior Trump lawyers Rudy Giuliani and Jenna Ellis said on Sunday in a joint statement. "She is also not a lawyer for the president in his personal capacity."
Giuliani and Ellis gave no explanation for the statement. Trump last week named Powell, a former federal prosecutor, among five well-known lawyers who would lead his legal team in challenging the results of this month's presidential election.
Powell was among three featured speakers when the Trump legal team held a press conference on Thursday to give an overview of its election-fraud cases in key states that the president apparently lost to Democrat rival Joe Biden.ALSO ON RT.COM 'I'm going to RELEASE THE KRAKEN': Michael Flynn's attorney vows to expose Dem collusion behind prominent voting machine firm
Powell focused largely on accusations that Dominion voting machines and Smartmatic election software were fraudulently manipulated to award thousands of fake votes to Biden. Her allegations went deeper, involving allies of the late Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez owning Dominion and having ties to Democrat billionaire donor George Soros.
But by Thursday night, Powell's story was being challenged by a conservative media superstar, Fox News host Tucker Carlson, who said she had brushed off multiple requests to provide evidence of the Dominion-Smartmatic scheme for his show. She also was invited to be interviewed on his show, but "when we kept pressing, she got angry and told us to stop contacting her," Carlson said.ALSO ON RT.COM Doubling down: Tucker claims other Trump legal team members yet to see evidence on rigged election software from Sidney Powell
Powell responded by saying she told Carlson not to contact her again because he was "very insulting, demanding and rude." She also provided him with an affidavit and referred him to a witness who could help him understand her statistical evidence. Carlson followed up the next night, saying he had heard from Trump sources, including other members of the president's legal team, who said that they hadn't seen Powell's evidence firsthand.
If Powell's allegations in the press conference seemed a little wild, her interview on Saturday night with conservative news outlet Newsmax took the case to another level. She accused Georgia's Republican governor, Brian Kemp, and the state's secretary of state, Brad Raffensperger, of receiving financial benefits to help Biden win the state's 16 electoral votes.
"Georgia's probably going to be the first state I'm gonna blow up," Powell said of her planned fraud cases. "And Mr. Kemp and the secretary of state need to go with it because they're in on the Dominion scam." She added that her Georgia lawsuit, which she hopes to file this week, "will be biblical."ALSO ON RT.COM 'KrakenOnSteroids': Sydney Powell says she 'understands' Trump's lawyers distancing themselves from her, vows to fight on
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pogohere 4 hours ago 22 Nov, 2020 08:17 PMSome teams are harder to play on than others. Look at the Flynn case. The US Dep. of Justice surrendered to Powell et. al. and requested that its own case against Flynn be dismissed following the disclosure by Powell's efforts that the DOJ was withholding evidence-- a "Brady rule violation"-- of Flynn's innocence from the defense and the court. Flynn's prestigious Wa DC law firm earlier had Flynn plead guilty. The judge is holding up the dismissal of that case, against all precedent. Powell most likely isn't finished. Neither is The Donald.GoldMorgsCom 4 hours ago 22 Nov, 2020 08:31 PMGiuliani and Ellis intimidated and gearing down? Powell least nervous at the presentation. Usually fraud by (voting)computers escapes the possibility of external proof. But a peculiarity in the Michigan-elections enabled it. See on the site vashiva (Shiva) MIT PhD Analysis of Michigan Votes Reveals Unfortunate Truth of U.S. Voting Systems. Its systematic fraud, save screenshots. Steven J. Miller Ph.D. published his testimony, that about 50'000 mail-in ballots of republicans have disapeared in Pensylvenia and 50'000 absentee ballots have been abused by others (in favor of Biden = +50000). It makes up about 150000 to the disadvantage of Trump in PA. Bidens surplus was about 75000. About Michigan and Pensylvenia it has been published that the number of fraud votes was sufficient for a fraud change of the outcome in favor of "the democrats". The signals are that the same happened in the other critical states . See also -- Trump lawyers allege 'MASSIVE' election fraud, point to sworn statements & efforts to threaten and silence them (VIDEO)-- 19 Nov, 2020 20:30 ( rt-search, on top at the right ) In the first ten minutes it is explained how the "democrat" bosses facilitated huge fraud with absentee ballots. In Pensylvenia 682'000 have been accepted without proper checks and with destroying the evidence of fraud. It is a federal offence not to store all election records (scans), even not collecting them, such as besiding mail-in envelopes and not checking them before opening them.JingsGeordie 4 hours ago 22 Nov, 2020 08:18 PMDisavows? That's twisting the information (edit - they've now changed it to 'distances') From Gen. Flynn's twitter feed - ".@SidneyPowell1 has been suspended from Twitter for 12 hours. She understands the WH press release & agrees with it. She is staying the course to prove the massive deliberate election fraud that robbed #WeThePeople of our votes for President Trump & other Republican candidates."Thesheperd666 4 hours ago 22 Nov, 2020 09:02 PMTrump fired Sidney Powell ? That is a huge mistake and might coast him the presidency. Trumps team looks weak now ! Sidney look more confident and much more calmer than Rudy Giuliani. I really don't trust Rudy as much as Sidney, wondering if they are afraid of spoiling the Republic party before the 12th amendment goes to the house for votes ? Either side your on this makes Trumps team look bad, and are starting to make up stories. I think Trump did win by a landslide and this years vote was stolen from the US citizens. Demarcates can breath a little more easier now that Sidney is gone, she was the strongest one on the team. Trump needs more Sidney Powell's not less, I don't trust Rudy nor do I think he has what it takes to win. Trump needs better Lawyers, Rudy is just a celebrity lawyer that will keep his image no matter what ! Trump needs tigers not mice !anastasia265 3 hours ago 22 Nov, 2020 09:27 PMIt's not true. She was never a part of that team and had her own funding site. Their strategy was to keep the two matters separateJ_P_Franklin 4 hours ago 22 Nov, 2020 08:49 PMMajority of Republicans are and have conspired against Trump since 2016. America First Trumpism is the opposite of Republican open borders/free trade treason.GoldMorgsCom 4 hours ago 22 Nov, 2020 09:03 PMPeculiar is that the German chamber of commerce does not reveal any registration of the Dominions, neither of Smartmatic neither of Scytl neither of Amazone. These have not registrated or their registrations are being hidden on request. So who's prosecution by the German state prosecutors is to be requested?Gerald Newton 2 hours ago 22 Nov, 2020 10:56 PMSidney Powell has not released her evidence yet but it is coming. She has an impressive record and probably will crush much of the federal justice system. That is what she does. Read her book, Licensed to Lie. It is about the way federal prosecutors lie to prosecute like they did to Senator Stevens of Alaska.Swanster6450 3 hours ago 22 Nov, 2020 09:56 PMI guess Sidney Powell is finding what happens to people from outside the political loop when they seek to stick their nose in and point out a few inconsistencies. Chucked under a bus is the usual outcome. Julian Assange is also finding out the same thing and, incidentally, so too is Donald Trump. All shafted and all chucked under a bus for pointing out a few inconsistencies.RTreaderCaribb 3 hours ago 22 Nov, 2020 09:56 PMI have one question and one question only: why would Sydney Powell who seems to be very bright and a good lawyer say something of which she would know will be exposed only in less than 14 days to be totally untrue? This makes no sense at all. And so I think we all should pray that this woman does not end up like Jeffrey Epstein. We should take our time. 14 days are nothing in comparison to the endless work she has to put in . And if she cant show any fact for her allegations then we can maybe say something went wrong with her. But right now let this woman work. All this prejudgment in the public court is irritating to me. And if Sidney Powell did the same then yes, she would be irritating to me too. And for Trump: If he can prove voter fraud then he should go to the supreme court. If he cant then at some point he must concede. I guess the latest is December 14th and until then he should just figure out what it is. That is his legal right. And for the American people: if you were so stupid to vote for Biden then please bear the consequences thereof because you will go down the tubes. The man is not well in his head.allan Kaplan 3 hours ago 22 Nov, 2020 09:43 PMSidney Powell's stamina, her defiance and her antipathy is so real that those who have faced injustice by the hands of the powerful know what it takes to get such bullies sweating. The house of cards of the Democrat commies will come tumbling down once Powell gets to the podium of naming names, dates, places, and their coconspirators et al. I love her tenacity, determination, perseverance and her unflinching boldness that most of the dems are sweating about! Thank you Ms. Powell for a great American tradition and go full speed... the dissenting maverick you are!GoldMorgsCom 3 hours ago 22 Nov, 2020 09:27 PMThey are so scared that the president Trump will conduct the great cleansing, to start with removing the authority on the dollar from the Federal Reserve to the usa federal state of the people. They are already blocking the president Trump during four years to keep him from that. They know they can now only keep the president Trump from the great cleansing by removing him from office. They will do more than the high treason of the fraud against the federal elections, to remove the president Trump from office. Eventually they will detonate a smuggled-in nuclear bomb and allegate Russia or fire a missile with a nuclear bomb from an unindentified submarine and allegate Russia. You believe the spread of Covid-19 this year was a coincidense? If Russia is being attacked any more (with allegations) it is a good reason for conducting the great cleansing in Russia. Those probably sly covered Khodorovski-types who are pressing forward (exports of) GMM-injections "against Covid-19" are probably backstabbing Russia; catastrophic future compensation claims on Russia and confiscation of all export-incomes. This is a good reason for conducting the great cleansing out of Russia of all Khodorovski-types. We hope that the reorganized government of Russia will cleanse out all Khodorovski-types, no matter the president Trump will continue office and conduct the great cleansing in the usa or not.Marlin1091 12 minutes ago 23 Nov, 2020 01:06 AMGoogle did and is helping biden. That is why I don't use google any more, I use Yandex and for fackrok I use vk
Nov 22, 2020 | www.unz.com
Wally , says: Next New Comment November 22, 2020 at 12:04 am GMT • 18.6 hours ago@Brett Redmayne-Titley dney-powell-staggering-evidence-of-vote-fraud-dominion-machines-engineered-by-china-venezuela-cuba/anonymous  Disclaimer , says: Next New Comment November 22, 2020 at 12:20 am GMT • 18.4 hours ago
Trump Lawyer Sidney Powell Responds to Tucker Carlson: 'He Was Insulting, Demanding and Rude' : https://www.breitbart.com/clips/2020/11/20/trump-lawyer-sidney-powell-responds-to-tucker-carlson-he-was-insulting-demanding-and-rude/#
and more Powell interviews:
BRT 207, agreed that the interview was less than cathartic, but Sidney has a tighrope to walk. Her opponent is not the opposing campaign of Dem hacks. Her opponent is CIA. CIA stuffed all those ballots. Unfortunately for Sidney, in US law and regulation, CIA crime is secret. The perps are secret under the IIPA. The facts are secret under the operational files exemption. The law is secret under COG procedures. Flynn explained the birds and bees to her. Remember DIA is JFK's creation.
Now Sidney has to find a way to puke up evidence of CIA crime in court.
CIA ratfucked Chavez with their electoral malware, albeit ineffectually.
https://wikileaks.org/plusd/cables/06CARACAS2063_a.html (per that cheeky monkey PCR)
CIA put their Venezuelan proprietary through a couple of sheepdippings and turned it on Trump. Just like they used it on Kerry. Just like they do whenever you vote for the wrong guy. Honnête homme Hopsicker, offered a lifetime of hookers and blow to shut up, has the most synoptic take:
This is transnational organized crime by CIA. Sidney has to call CIA agents under oath. She has to protect them from DO's murderers. She has to explode everything you think about your bullshit fake democracy. I don't know if she can do it but I hope she can.
Nov 22, 2020 | www.nakedcapitalism.com
By Arthur Allen, editor for California Healthline, joined Kaiser Health News in April 2020 after six years at Politico, where he created, edited and wrote for the first health IT-focused news team. Previously, he was a freelance writer for publications such as The New York Times, The Washington Post, Smithsonian, Lingua Franca magazine, The New Republic, Slate and Salon. Earlier in his career, he worked for The Associated Press for 13 years, including stints as a correspondent based in El Salvador, Mexico and Germany. He is the author of the books "V Kaiser Health News. accine: The Controversial Story of Medicine's Greatest Lifesaver" (W.W. Norton, 2007); "Ripe: The Search for the Perfect Tomato" (Counterpoint Press, 2010) and "The Fantastic Laboratory of Dr. Weigl" (W.W. Norton, 2014). Originally published at Kaiser Health News Kaiser Health News .
When he started researching a troublesome childhood infection nearly four decades ago, virologist Dr. Barney Graham , then at Vanderbilt University, had no inkling his federally funded work might be key to deliverance from a global pandemic.
Yet nearly all the vaccines advancing toward possible FDA approval this fall or winter are based on a design developed by Graham and his colleagues, a concept that emerged from a scientific quest to understand a disastrous 1966 vaccine trial.
Basic research conducted by Graham and others at the National Institutes of Health, Defense Department and federally funded academic laboratories has been the essential ingredient in the rapid development of vaccines in response to COVID-19. The government has poured an additional $10.5 billion into vaccine companies since the pandemic began to accelerate the delivery of their products.
The Moderna vaccine, whose remarkable effectiveness in a late-stage trial was announced Monday morning, emerged directly out of a partnership between Moderna and Graham's NIH laboratory.
Coronavirus vaccines are likely to be worth billions to the drug industry if they prove safe and effective. As many as 14 billion vaccines would be required to immunize everyone in the world against COVID-19. If, as many scientists anticipate, vaccine-produced immunity wanes, billions more doses could be sold as booster shots in years to come. And the technology and production laboratories seeded with the help of all this federal largesse could give rise to other profitable vaccines and drugs.
The vaccines made by Pfizer and Moderna, which are likely to be the first to win FDA approval, in particular rely heavily on two fundamental discoveries that emerged from federally funded research: the viral protein designed by Graham and his colleagues, and the concept of RNA modification, first developed by Drew Weissman and Katalin Karikó at the University of Pennsylvania. In fact, Moderna's founders in 2010 named the company after this concept: "Modified" + "RNA" = Moderna, according to co-founder Robert Langer .
"This is the people's vaccine," said corporate critic Peter Maybarduk, director of Public Citizen's Access to Medicines program. "Federal scientists helped invent it and taxpayers are funding its development. It should belong to humanity."
Moderna, through spokesperson Ray Jordan, acknowledged its partnership with NIH throughout the COVID-19 development process and earlier. Pfizer spokesperson Jerica Pitts noted the company had not received development and manufacturing support from the U.S. government, unlike Moderna and other companies.
The idea of creating a vaccine with messenger RNA, or mRNA -- the substance that converts DNA into proteins -- goes back decades. Early efforts to create mRNA vaccines failed, however, because the raw RNA was destroyed before it could generate the desired response. Our innate immune systems evolved to kill RNA strands because that's what many viruses are.
Karikó came up with the idea of modifying the elements of RNA to enable it to slip past the immune system undetected. The modifications she and Weissman developed allowed RNA to become a promising delivery system for both vaccines and drugs. To be sure, their work was enhanced by scientists at Moderna, BioNTech and other laboratories over the past decade.
Another key element in the mRNA vaccine is the lipid nanoparticle -- a tiny, ingeniously designed bit of fat that encloses the RNA in a sort of invisibility cloak, ferrying it safely through the blood and into cells and then dissolving, thereby allowing the RNA to do its work of coding a protein that will serve as the vaccine's main active ingredient. The idea of enclosing drugs or vaccines in lipid nanoparticles arose first in the 1960s and was developed by Langer and others at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and various academic and industry laboratories.
Karikó began investigating RNA in 1978 in her native Hungary and wrote her first NIH grant proposal to use mRNA as a therapeutic in 1989. She and Weissman achieved successes starting in 2004, but the path to recognition was often discouraging.
"I keep writing and doing experiments, things are getting better and better, but I never get any money for the work," she recalled in an interview. "The critics said it will never be a drug. When I did these discoveries, my salary was lower than the technicians working next to me."
Eventually, the University of Pennsylvania sublicensed the patent to Cellscript, a biotech company in Wisconsin, much to the dismay of Weissman and Karikó, who had started their own company to try to commercialize the discovery. Moderna and BioNTech later would each pay $75 million to Cellscript for the RNA modification patent, Karikó said. Though unhappy with her treatment at Penn, she remained there until 2013 -- partly because her daughter, Susan Francia, was making a name for herself on the school's rowing team. Francia would go on to win two Olympic gold medals in the sport. Karikó is now a senior officer at BioNTech.
In addition to RNA modification and the lipid nanoparticle, the third key contribution to the mRNA vaccines -- as well as those made by Novavax, Sanofi and Johnson & Johnson -- - is the bioengineered protein developed by Graham and his collaborators . It has proved in tests so far to elicit an immune response that could prevent the virus from causing infections and disease.
The protein design was based on the observation that so-called fusion proteins -- the pieces of the virus that enable it to invade a cell -- are shape-shifters, presenting different surfaces to the immune system after the virus fuses with and infects cells. Graham and his colleagues learned that antibodies against the post-fusion protein are far less effective at stopping an infection.
The discovery arose in part through Graham's studies of a 54-year-old tragedy -- the failed 1966 trial of an NIH vaccine against respiratory syncytial virus, or RSV. In a clinical trial, not only did that vaccine fail to protect against the common childhood disease, but most of the 21 children who received it were hospitalized with acute allergic reactions, and two died .
About a decade ago, Graham, now deputy director of NIH's Vaccine Research Center, took a new stab at the RSV problem with a postdoctoral fellow, Jason McLellan. After isolating and obtaining three-dimensional models of the RSV's fusion protein, they worked with Chinese scientists to identify an appropriate neutralizing antibody against it.
"We were sitting in Xiamen, China, when Jason got the first image up on his laptop, and I was like, oh my God, it's coming together," Graham recalled. The prefusion antibodies they discovered were 16 times more potent than the post-fusion form contained in the faulty 1960s vaccine.
Two 2013 papers the team published in Science earned them a runner-up prize in the prestigious journal's Breakthrough of the Year award. Their papers, which showed it was possible to plan and create a vaccine at the microscopic structural level, set the NIH's Vaccine Research Center on a path toward creating a generalizable, rapid way to design vaccines against emerging pandemic viruses, Graham said.
In 2016, Graham, McLellan and other scientists, including Andrew Ward at the Scripps Research Institute, advanced their concept further by publishing the prefusion structure of a coronavirus that causes the common cold and a patent was filed for its design by NIH, Scripps and Dartmouth -- where McLellan had set up his own lab. NIH and the University of Texas -- where McLellan now works -- filed an additional patent this year for a similar design change in the virus that causes COVID-19.
Graham's NIH lab, meanwhile, had started working with Moderna in 2017 to design a rapid manufacturing system for vaccines. In January, they were preparing a demonstration project, a clinical trial to test whether Graham's protein design and Moderna's mRNA platform could be used to create a vaccine against Nipah, a deadly virus spread by bats in Asia.
Their plans changed rapidly when they learned on Jan. 7 that the epidemic of respiratory disease in China was being caused by a coronavirus.
"We agreed immediately that the demonstration project would focus on this virus" instead of Nipah, Graham said. Moderna produced a vaccine within six weeks. The first patient was vaccinated in an NIH-led clinical study on March 16; early results from Moderna's 30,000-volunteer late-stage trial showed it was nearly 95% effective at preventing COVID-19.
Although other scientists have advanced proposals for what may be even more potent vaccine antigens , Graham is confident that carefully designed vaccines using nucleic acids like RNA reflect the future of new vaccines. Already, two major drug companies are doing advanced clinical trials for RSV vaccines based on the designs his lab discovered, he said.
In a larger sense, the pandemic could be the event that paves the way for better, perhaps cheaper and more plentiful vaccines.
"It's a silver lining, but I think we are definitely pushing forward the way everyone is thinking about vaccines," said Michael Farzan , chair of the department of immunology and microbiology at Scripps Research's Florida campus. "Certain techniques that have been waiting in the wings, under development but never achieving the kind of funding they needed for major tests, will finally get their chance to shine."
Under a 1980 law, the NIH will obtain no money from the coronavirus vaccine patent. How much money will eventually go to the discoverers or their institutions isn't clear. Any existing licensing agreements haven't been publicized; patent disputes among some of the companies will likely last years. HHS' big contracts with the vaccine companies are not transparent, and Freedom of Information Act requests have been slow-walked and heavily redacted, said Duke University law professor Arti Rai.
Some basic scientists involved in the enterprise seem to accept the potentially lopsided financial rewards.
"Having public-private partnerships is how things get done," Graham said. "During this crisis, everything is focused on how can we do the best we can as fast as we can for the public health. All this other stuff is going to have to be figured out later."
"It's not a good look to become extremely wealthy off a pandemic," McLellan said, noting the big stock sales by some vaccine company executives after they received hundreds of millions of dollars in government assistance. Still, "the companies should be able to make some money."
For Graham, the lesson of the coronavirus vaccine response is that a few billion dollars a year spent on additional basic research could prevent a thousand times as much loss in death, illness and economic destruction.
"Basic research informs what we do, and planning and preparedness can make such a difference in how we get ahead of these epidemics," he said.
Larry , November 18, 2020 at 7:21 am
I appreciate the recent re-look at the nexus of public investment funding private profit in the pharma space. I'm not old enough to recall how things were done prior to the 1980s with regards to promising academic discoveries getting commercialized in the United States. There is also a glaring omission here in that there are mechanisms for the Federal Government to take control of patents and price fix in an emergency, but it's clear that was never going to happen and was never whispered in the lead up to operation Warp Speed. Pfizer keeps pointing out they never took government money, which is a set up for them to set the price at whatever they want while executives line their pockets.
The second point, that is not a focus of the article, is that these technologies are still completely unproven. I am optimistic about the early results, though would feel better if they were published in quality journals and not press releases. We simply don't know anything about long term affects of dosing with this technology. These articles make it sound like we're out of the woods and these vaccines are here to stay, but what if there are high percentages of people that get major side effects? We still have no idea.
Code Name D , November 18, 2020 at 7:53 am
But Joe Biden is now president. So of course the vaccines will work.
John Hacker , November 18, 2020 at 10:51 am
I was just thinking about that this morning. I thought about the little boy who cried wolf. If Don had not tarnished his (??where-with-all??) by not leading. He still be the Prez.
WobblyTelomeres , November 18, 2020 at 7:54 am
So, Larry, what would it take to convince you? A million volunteers? A billion? 2 years? 5 years?
trhys , November 18, 2020 at 8:01 am
So, Wobbly, can I safely assume that you and your family have already volunteered for one of the trials?
WobblyTelomeres , November 18, 2020 at 8:31 am
As I have stated here, yes.
trhys , November 18, 2020 at 8:45 am
I applaud you for standing with power of your convictions. Not many have the integrity to do so. This is meant sincerely.
On the other hand I think Larry has a point. Hopefully his and my concerns will prove to be unfounded. I believe it is too soon to tell. Your question about the quantification of risk is a fair question and is difficult for the layman judge.
WobblyTelomeres , November 18, 2020 at 9:36 am
I share the concerns that have been and are voiced here. Still, there is a class aspect to it all. It seems as if this war is like every other war; the poors are sent in first. There are many, perhaps the majority of volunteers, that need the couple of hundred bucks the pharmas are offering the participants. They are the same people that line up to sell their blood plasma every week. Big business, that. So, I woke up, looked in the mirror, and told the old man there to "Suck it up, Buttercup."
And Lambert and others are right when they say our leaders should be first in line to roll up their sleeves. Just don't forget the many that have already done so.
Susan the other , November 18, 2020 at 11:21 am
It was a revelation to me that RNA vaccines had been in the works since the 60s. That makes me a little more in-favor of them. It is still frightening that this vaccine will be mandated for all medical personnel before the rest of the population. Also interesting that RNA gets greased up to slip past the enzymes(?) that destroy errant RNA I'm still trying to think how that might not be such a good thing. But you are right – it looks like it works. Extremely well in fact. But a timeline to prove it is safe? I'd say one or two generations. If this mRNA slips past the mechanisms to protect the cell from foreign RNA then it could hang around long enough to communicate itself back to the genetic DNA – it's just that they don't quite know how that process works yet. And that's scary as hell. (Lamarck's Signature). I'd say maybe we should not give this vaccine to anyone under the age of 35 until we know more about possible negatives involving inheritance. Instead we should produce good medicines to treat these infections.
John Hacker , November 18, 2020 at 10:58 am
Don't we have laws for price gouging in a crisis? As for untested. Check the thread for data started compiling 1966.
BillC , November 18, 2020 at 10:54 am
Yes, we need volunteers. And they need to be fully informed. I hope you noticed this remark in yesterday's Water Cooler. Of course, we don't know that the commentor's claimed bona fides are factual, but if so, his/her take seems appropriate to me.
WobblyTelomeres , November 18, 2020 at 11:55 am
I did, and I take them at their word as to background. Valid concerns, well expressed.
Larry , November 18, 2020 at 11:58 am
The publications and a full accounting of side effects are important for a new technology like this. Traditional vaccinations are in the billions of doses at this point and quite safe. For this new technology, it's quite hard to say. The publications might bowl me over and convince me, but press releases do not.
Wes , November 18, 2020 at 3:57 pm
The Moderna study (n=45) was published in NEJM. Haven't read beyond the abstract or looked for the Pfizer study yet.
KLG , November 18, 2020 at 7:48 am
It should be noted that, so far, we have proof of effectiveness in the form of press releases that are intended to goose stock prices.
Long story, but the neoliberalization of basic biomedical science is complete. This was foreseeable upon passage of the Bayh-Dole Act of 1980. I remember how such science was done way back then. Scientists did science. Those without the patience and essentially self-abnegation required for that, went to work at Ciba-Geigy or Burroughs-Welcome or Merck. The system worked, more or less. At the time I was a very junior lab member, and I told my labmates that Bayh-Dole meant only that we would pay for most science (at least) twice, the first time when NIH/NSF/ACS/AHA/March of Dimes funded it and the second time when Big Pharma "bought" it and charged what a false, not free, market in research and health care would bear. They just stared at me, with stars in their eyes.
Polar Donkey , November 18, 2020 at 9:18 am
Dolly Parton invested $1 m illion in the Moderna vaccine. I can't wait till Tennessee takes down all these Nathan Bedford Forrest statues and replaces them with Dolly Parton.
rd , November 18, 2020 at 12:44 pm
Dolly Parton is a great songwriter and performer but is also a shrewd businesswoman who is hyper-focused on helping "her people" in the region where she grew up dirt poor. "Coat of Many Colors" is one of the truly great autobiographical songs. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coat_of_Many_Colors_(song)
Appreciation for Dolly shows up in many interesting corners in the region. Several years ago, a newly discovered lichen in southern Appalachia was named in her honor. I never heard a comment from her on this, but she probably thought it was great. https://www.nybg.org/blogs/science-talk/2015/05/honoring-a-musical-legend-of-the-southern-appalachians/
Replacing a Nathan Bedford Forest statue with her would be a great move.
Serfs Up! , November 18, 2020 at 10:38 am
1.So if there were to be no vaccine and the virus had it's way with us, killing 1% of us, that's what, -- 3 million souls?
2. Alternatively, if there is a vaccine and everyone is vaccinated and that brings an end to the pandemic, with deaths much curtailed, but 25,000 get Guillian Barre', that's still a win right?
(Though not if you are one of the 25,000.)
3. Lastly, given their penchant for maximizing clicks and eyeballs,
how do you think the media would handle situations 1 or 2?
Trust in Public Health is easier to knock down than to build back up, especially vaccines.
As Greg Brown says, "It's a long way up but it's a short way down."
Ford Prefect , November 18, 2020 at 12:48 pm
South Dakota will be very informative on this front. It appears to be trying to drag-race herd immunity through infection before a vaccine shows up. It will probably be the control group for the statistical study of the relative efficacy on lives saved by a vaccine vs. letting the disease take its natural course. Beer appears to be the placebo vaccine of choice in South Dakota.
BrianM , November 18, 2020 at 1:25 pm
My reading of this is that even if Pfizer didn't take government money as part of the Warp Speed initiative, as a mRNA vaccine it still likely builds on the earlier work. I have no problem with pharma companies making a profit of their later work – they did do the last critical developments – but nothing for the earlier work isn't right.
AGKaiser , November 18, 2020 at 1:25 pm
We pay for it but they profit from it. Why? Why is there for profit pharma and corporate medicine to begin with? Why is there competition instead of cooperation in the production of life saving/extending and other commonly needed goods and services? The provision of pharmaceuticals and medicine are a free market failure. We are not adequately provided with what we all must have at prices we all can afford. They've failed not because of the scientists and medical practitioners who do the real work. They've failed because of the capitalist parasites that own the corporations that employ the professionals who create the products and provide the services on the ground.
Socal Rhino , November 18, 2020 at 2:07 pm
One thought unsupported by any relevant technical expertise: the delivery mechanism sounds well suited for bio weaponry given it bypasses your immune reaction to RNA.
Kris Alman , November 18, 2020 at 3:57 pm
The protein design was based on the observation that so-called fusion proteins -- the pieces of the virus that enable it to invade a cell -- are shape-shifters, presenting different surfaces to the immune system after the virus fuses with and infects cells. Graham and his colleagues learned that antibodies against the post-fusion protein are far less effective at stopping an infection.
Reminds me of this other mysterious shape-shifter: From Wikipedia:
Prions are misfolded proteins with the ability to transmit their misfolded shape onto normal variants of the same protein. They characterize several fatal and transmissible neurodegenerative diseases in humans and many other animals. It is not known what causes the normal protein to misfold, but the abnormal three-dimensional structure is suspected of conferring infectious properties, collapsing nearby protein molecules into the same shape. The word prion derives from "proteinaceous infectious particle".
Long-term follow-up of individuals who have received this vaccine versus their placebo compatriots is essential!
KLG , November 18, 2020 at 5:37 pm
Not likely to be similar. The "shape shifting" of the viral fusion protein means that different epitopes (i.e., different constellations of 3-D structure that elicit immune/antibody responses) of the fusion protein, which is embedded in the viral membrane envelope, are presented pre- and post-fusion. Antibodies against "post-fusion" fusion protein are unlikely to work because fusion with the host cell is the key phase of infection. But, and this is a big consideration, rushing into this is foolish, despite the rise in Big Pharma stock prices.
Fumettibrutti , November 19, 2020 at 3:40 am
COVID vaccine revelation sinks like a stone; disappears
In major media, certain stories gain traction. The trumpets keep blaring for a time before they fade.
Other stories are one-offs. A few of them strike hard. Their implications -- if anyone stops to think about them -- are powerful. Then nothing.
"Wait, aren't you going to follow up on that? Don't you see what that MEANS?"
Apparently not, because dead silence. "In other news, the governor lost his pet parakeet for an hour. His chief of staff found it taking a nap in a desk drawer "
One-offs function like teasers. You definitely want to know more, but you never get more.
Over the years, I've tried to follow up on a few. The reporter or the editor has a set of standard replies: "We didn't get much feedback." "We covered it." "It's now old news." "There wasn't anything else to find out."
Oh, but there WAS.
A few weeks ago, I ran a one-off. The analysis and commentary were mine, but the story was an opinion piece in the New York Times. The Times called it an opinion piece to soften its blow. I suspected it would disappear, and it did.
Its meaning and implication were too strong. It would be a vast embarrassment for the White House, the Warp Speed COVID vaccine program, the vaccine manufacturers, the coronavirus task force, and vaccine researchers.
And embarrassment would be just the beginning of their problem.
So here it is again. The vanished one-off, back in business:
COVID vaccine clinical trials doomed to fail; fatal design flaw; NY Times opinion piece exposes all three major clinical trials.
Peter Doshi, associate editor of the medical journal BMJ, and Eric Topol, Scripps Research professor of molecular medicine, have written a devastating NY Times opinion piece about the ongoing COVID vaccine clinical trials.
They expose the fatal flaw in the large Pfizer, AstraZeneca, and Moderna trials.
September 22, the Times: "These Coronavirus Trials Don't Answer the One Question We Need to Know"
"If you were to approve a coronavirus vaccine, would you approve one that you only knew protected people only from the most mild form of Covid-19, or one that would prevent its serious complications?"
"The answer is obvious. You would want to protect against the worst cases."
"But that's not how the companies testing three of the leading coronavirus vaccine candidates, Moderna, Pfizer and AstraZeneca, whose U.S. trial is on hold, are approaching the problem."
"According to the protocols for their studies, which they released late last week, a vaccine could meet the companies' benchmark for success if it lowered the risk of mild Covid-19, but was never shown to reduce moderate or severe forms of the disease, or the risk of hospitalization, admissions to the intensive care unit or death."
"To say a vaccine works should mean that most people no longer run the risk of getting seriously sick. That's not what these trials will determine."
This means these clinical trials are dead in the water.
The trials are designed to show effectiveness in preventing mild cases of COVID, which nobody should care about, because mild cases naturally run their course and cause no harm. THERE IS NO NEED FOR A VACCINE THAT PREVENTS MILD CASES.
There. That's the NY Times one-off. My piece analyzing it went on much longer, but you get the main thrust:
The leading vaccine clinical trials are useless, irrelevant, misleading, and deceptive.
But now, it gets much worse. Because Pfizer has just announced their vaccine is almost ready. CNBC headline, November 9: "Pfizer, BioNTech say Covid vaccine is more than 90% effective -- 'great day for science and humanity'"
And not a peep about the NY Times one-off. That's gone, as if it never was.
Trump's coronavirus task force knows the truth. Biden's new task force, waiting in the wings, knows the truth. But they don't care. They're criminals. They'd sell a car with a gas tank ready to explode to a customer with cash.
But you care, because you can read and think.
You can raise hell.
Now, in case anyone is interested in knowing WHY the major clinical trials of the COVID vaccine are designed only to prevent mild cases of COVID, I'll explain.
A vaccine maker assumes that, during the course of the clinical trial, a few of the 30,000 volunteers are going to "catch COVID-19."
They assume this because "the virus is everywhere," as far as they're concerned. So it'll drop down from the clouds and infect a few of the volunteers.
The magic number is 150. When that number of volunteers "catch COVID," everything stops. The clinical trial stops.
At this point, the vaccine maker hopes that most of the volunteers who "got infected" are in the placebo group. They didn't receive the real vaccine; they received the saltwater placebo shot.
Then the vaccine maker can proudly say, "See? The volunteers who caught COVID-19? Most of them didn't receive the vaccine. They weren't protected. The volunteers who received the real vaccine didn't catch COVID. The vaccine protected them."
Actually, the number split the vaccine makers are looking for is 50 and 100. If 50 people in the vaccine group catch COVID, and 100 in the placebo group catch COVID, the vaccine is said to be 50% effective. And that's all the vaccine maker needs to win FDA approval for the vaccine.
But wait. Let's look closer at this idea of "catching COVID." What are they really talking about? How do they define that? Claiming a volunteer in the clinical trial caught COVID adds up to what?
Does it add up to a minimal definition of COVID-19 -- a cough, or chills and fever? Or does it mean a serious case -- severe pneumonia?
Now we come to the hidden factor, the secret, the source of the whole con game.
You see, the vaccine maker starts out with 30,000 HEALTHY volunteers. So, if they waited for 150 of them to come down with severe pneumonia, a serious case of COVID, how long do you think that would take? Five years? Ten years?
The vaccine maker can't possibly wait that long.
These 150 COVID cases the vaccine maker is looking for would be mild. Just a cough. Or chills and fever. That scenario would only take a few months to develop. And face it, chills, cough, and fever aren't unique to COVID. Anyone can come down with those symptoms.
THEREFORE, THE WHOLE CLINICAL TRIAL IS DESIGNED, UP FRONT, TO FIND 150 CASES OF MILD AND MEANINGLESS AND SELF-CURING "COVID."
About which, no one cares. No one should care.
But, as we see, Pfizer is trumpeting their clinical trial of the vaccine as a landmark in human history.
And THAT'S the story of the one-off the NY Times didn't think was worth a second glance.
Because they're so stupid? No. They're not that stupid.
And the government wants you to take the experimental COVID vaccine, whose "effectiveness" was designed to prevent nothing worth losing a night's sleep over.
The only worry are the adverse effects of the vaccine, about which I've written extensively. These effects include, depending on what's in the vial, a permanent alteration of your genetic makeup, or an auto-immune cascade, in which the body attacks itself.
by Jon Rappoport
November 11, 2020
Lambert Strether , November 19, 2020 at 8:45 am
Nov 21, 2020 | townhall.com
O'Connor pushed her about her claims that computer software used in the election, particularly Dominion Voting Systems, has been tainted, and he wondered how she would prove it. For starters, Powell said that her legal team has pictures of votes being manipulated in real-time.
"It is terrifying, and it is a huge national security issue," Powell said. "Why the Department of Justice and FBI have not done something, Dominion is closing its offices and moving. No doubt they're shredding documents. God only knows what else. More than 100 Dominion people have wiped any connection with Dominion off the internet."
She also claims that they have testimony from witnesses opening military ballots and trashing them if they were for Trump, and substitute ballots were put in for Biden.
"I'm essentially staking my personal and professional reputation on these allegations, and I have no hesitation from what I've seen in doing so," she noted. "In fact, I think it would be irresponsible if not criminal of me not to come forward with it."
She also says she would LOVE for Dominion to sue her over her allegations so she can conduct civil discovery. Powell also reacted to Fox News host Tucker Carlson's criticism of her on his program on Thursday night.
You can listen to their full interview below.
Nov 19, 2020 | www.youtube.com
Tucker: We heard you. It's hard to trust anything. Here's what we know.
Nov 19, 2020 | www.youtube.com
Tucker Carlson exposes American corporations for teaming up to censor political opponents.
Clare Breanna , 8 hours agojim hall , 8 hours ago
Seems like they want to isolate everyone. Makes us all vulnerable.
Electing buying is like having a Trojan horse coming into this White House
Kirk Patrick , 5 hours ago
Republican Senators to Big Tech: "Why are you censoring Americans?" Democrat Senators to Big Tech: "Why don't you censor Americans more?"
Nov 18, 2020 | thefederalist.com
The mass mailing of unsolicited ballots is of course a recipe for fraud, even more so in a state where the voter rolls contain tens of thousands of people who haven't voted or updated their records in more than a decade. This is how you get dead people voting, as we reported here at The Federalist and as Tucker Carlson noted last week .
But there's another, less sensational but perhaps more consequential election scandal in Nevada that hasn't yet made headlines, even though it's been hiding in plain sight for weeks now. Under the guise of supposedly nonprofit, nonpartisan get-out-the-vote campaigns, Native American voter advocacy groups in Nevada handed out gift cards, electronics, clothing, and other items to voters in tribal areas, in many cases documenting the exchange of ballots for "prizes" on their own Facebook pages, sometimes even while wearing official Joe Biden campaign gear.
Simply put, this is illegal. Offering voters anything of value in exchange for their vote is a violation of federal election law , and in some cases punishable by up to two years in prison and as much as $10,000 in fines . That includes raffles, free food, free T-shirts, and so on.
... ... ...
There are about 60,000 eligible Native American voters in Nevada who make up about 3 percent of the state's total voting population. That's almost twice the current margin of Biden's current lead over President Trump in Nevada. So the Native American vote really does matter, it could even be decisive. It therefore matters how many Native American votes were influenced by an illegal cash-for-votes scheme, especially if funding for it came from American taxpayers via the NCAI.
It also matters because this didn't just happen in Nevada. Organizers there might have been more obvious about what they were doing, but there's evidence that similar efforts, including gift card and electronics giveaways, were undertaken in Native communities in South Dakota , Arizona , Wisconsin , Washington , Michigan , Idaho , Minnesota , and Texas .
All of this coordinated illegal activity, clearly designed to churn out votes for Biden and Democrats in tribal areas all across the country, is completely out in the open. You don't need special access or some secret source to find out about it. You just have be curious, look around, and report it.
Unfortunately, mainstream media outlets are not curious and refuse to report on any of this stuff. What's described above is an egregious and totally transparent vote-buying scheme in Nevada that was likely undertaken on a similar scale across nearly a dozen other states, but you won't read about it in The New York Times, or hear about it on CNN.
That's not because the story is unimportant, but because, for the media establishment, it's inconvenient. No wonder these groups didn't try to hide what they were doing.
Nov 16, 2020 | off-guardian.org
XXX, Nov 16, 2020 8:28 AM Reply to Jacques
We really need to accept that we may not know what we think we know. For 40 years, we've all been bleating the mantras of neoliberalism which were promoted as The Natural Order of Things, but are in fact just a model, one of many.
And, objectively, how is the neoliberal model doing? For starters, there is so much money around that doesn't know what to do with itself, that the price of money (interest rates) has never been lower. Ever. Basic supply and demand.
At the same time, neoliberal governments, citing lack of money, have imposed austerity measures on the working class, cutting services and support to such an extent that serious social problems have arisen.
The reason the governments are short of cash is because they have continually reduced the share of GDP that goes into public coffers.
Blind Freddy can see the resultant inequality is a highly undesirable state of affairs, generating social unrest and unstable markets. Bizarrely, it is also contrary to the most basic of economic truisms: give poor people money and they spend it right away, generating a ripple of economic activity that reverberates through the real economy.
But according to neoliberalism, what we have here is perfectly fine because it accords with the model. And then the High Priests move in and blow smoke over the whole thing with incantations of why this must be so, again according to the model, which they themselves drew up to coordinate the way we do things. And of course, they believe their economic theory is the Natural Order of Things.
The pandemic has blown the lid off a few of those mantras. It'll take fifty years to decarbonise? We advanced decades in a few weeks. There is no magic money tree? Yes, there is and you just used it. Giving poor people money undermines the economy? No, it doesn't – you've just proved it. Government debt is a drain on the economy? Not if it stimulates activity. Tax is an expense that needs to be curtailed? No, it's an investment in the economy for everyone.
There are so many things we think we know and many of them are nonsense. We need to take the opportunity this disruption presents and design a society for humans, not for corporations.
Jacques , Nov 16, 2020 9:13 AM Reply to Andrew Thompson
Sure. Now, all we have to do is to figure out how to put that into practice. The making of society for humans, not for m-effers.