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Who Rules America ?

A slightly skeptical view on the US political establishment and foreign policy

If Ronald Reagan was America's neo-Julius Caesar, his adopted son was the first George Bush (just as J.C. adopted Augustus). And look what THAT progeny wrought. I fully expect that over the next century, no fewer than seven Bushes will have run or become president (mimicking the Roman Caesarian line). Goodbye, American Republic.

From review of Imperial America: Reflections on the United States of Amnesia by Gore Vidal

Skepticism -> Political Skeptic

News Neoliberalism Recommended books Recommended Links Libertarian Philosophy Neoliberal Brainwashing -- Journalism in the Service of the Powerful Few Fake News scare and US NeoMcCartyism
National Security State Key Myths of Neoliberalism Big Uncle is Watching You The Iron Law of Oligarchy Color revolutions Cold War II Two Party System as Polyarchy
Fifth Column of Neoliberal Globalization Predator state Corporatism Elite Theory Neo-conservatism Neocon foreign policy is a disaster for the USA Charlie Hebdo - more questions then answers
Anti-Russian hysteria in connection emailgate and DNC leak Demonization of Putin Who Shot down Malaysian flight MH17? MSM Sochi Bashing Rampage Harvard Mafia, Andrei Shleifer and the economic rape of Russia Pathological Russophobia of the US elite Compradors vs. national bourgeoisie
Resurgence of neofascism as reaction on crisis of neoliberalism and neoliberal globalization Ukraine: From EuroMaydan to EuroAnschluss Civil war in Ukraine Fuck the EU Odessa Massacre of May 2, 2014 Russian Ukrainian Gas Wars Neoliberalism and Christianity
Anti Trump Hysteria Anti-globalization movement Neoliberal corruption DNC emails leak Brexit as the start of the reversal of neoliberal globalization Disaster capitalism IMF as the key institution for neoliberal debt enslavement
Corporatist Corruption: Systemic Fraud under Clinton-Bush-Obama Regime Media-Military-Industrial Complex New American Militarism Ethno-lingustic Nationalism American Exceptionalism The Deep State Obama: a yet another Neocon
Neoliberal war on reality In Foreign Events Coverage Guardian Presstitutes Slip Beyond the Reach of Embarrassment Corruption of Regulators Ayn Rand and her Objectivism Cult  Neo-Theocracy as a drive to simpler society American Imperialism, Transnational Capitalist Class and Globalization of Capitalism Bureaucracy as a Political Coalition
Audacious Oligarchy and "Democracy for Winners" Groupthink Crisis of legitimacy of neoliberal elite Deception as an art form Mayberry Machiavellians Immigration, wage depression and free movement of workers War and Peace Quotes
Famous quotes of John Kenneth Galbraith Talleyrand quotes Otto Von Bismarck Quotes Kurt Vonnegut Quotes Somerset Maugham Quotes George Carlin Propaganda Quotes
Overcomplexity of society Paleoconservatism Non-Interventionism   Skeptic Quotations Humor Etc

We had to struggle with the old enemies of peace — business and financial monopoly, speculation, reckless banking, class antagonism, sectionalism, war profiteering.

They had begun to consider the Government of the United States as a mere appendage to their own affairs. We know now that Government by organized money is just as dangerous as Government by organized mob.

FDR. speech after the election (1936)

polyarchy: A system where the participation of masses of people is limited to voting among one or another representatives of the elite in periodic elections. Between elections the masses are now expected to keep quiet, to go back to life as usual while the elite make decisions and run the world until they can choose between one or another elite another four years later. So polyarchy is a system of elite rule, and a system of elite rule that is little bit more soft-core than the elite rule that we would see under a military dictatorship. But what we see is that under a polyarchy the basic socio-economic system does not change, it does not become democratized.

▬William I. Robinson, Behind the Veil, Minute 1:29:15

 

This site is very skeptical as for the viability of Neoliberalism as a social system and had distinct pro "New Deal" capitalism bias. You are warned.

And yes, my friends, like Molière's play Le Bourgeois gentilhomme character, who he was surprised and delighted to learn that he has been speaking prose all his life without knowing it., you are living under neoliberal regime without knowing it.  And this regime is not the same as democracy. See Two Party System as Polyarchy

What is really interesting is that the term "neoliberalism"  has the status of a semi-taboo in the USA, and seldom can be found in articles published by the USA MSM, due to some kind of "silence" pact ;-).

Due to the size an introduction was converted to a separate page Who Rules America


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Shota Rustavelli(1172–1216)

[Aug 21, 2017] The Future Of The Third World

Aug 21, 2017 | www.zerohedge.com

The Future Of The Third World Zero Hedge Tyler Durden Aug 20, 2017 9:00 PM 0 SHARES Authored by Jayant Bhandari via Acting-Man.com, Decolonization

The British Empire was the largest in history. At the end of World War II Britain had to start pulling out from its colonies. A major part of the reason was, ironically, the economic prosperity that had come through industrialization, massive improvements in transportation, and the advent of telecommunications, ethnic and religious respect, freedom of speech, and other liberties offered by the empire.

The colors represent the colonies of various nations in 1945, and the colonial borders of that time – click to enlarge.

After the departure of the British ! as well as the French, German, Belgians, and other European colonizers ! most of the newly "independent" countries suffered rapid decay in their institutions, stagnant economies, massive social strife, and a fall in standards of living. An age of anti-liberalism and tyranny descended on these former colonies. They rightly became known as third-world countries.

An armchair economist would have assumed that the economies of these former colonies, still very backward and at a very low base compared to Europe, would grow at a faster rate. Quite to the contrary, as time went on, their growth rates stayed lower than those of the West.

Socialism and the rise of dictators were typically blamed for this ! at least among those on the political Right. This is not incorrect, but it is a merely proximate cause. Clarity might have been reached if people had contemplated the reason why Marxism and socialism grew like weeds in the newly independent countries.

Was There a Paradigm Shift in the 1980s?

According to conventional wisdom, the situation changed after the fall of the socialist ringleader, the USSR, in the late 1980s. Ex-colonized countries started to liberalize their economies and widely accepted democracy, leading to peace, the spread of education and equality, the establishment of liberal, independent institutions. Massive economic growth ensued and was sustained over the past three decades. The "third world" was soon renamed "emerging markets."

Alas, this is a faulty narrative. Economic growth did pick up in these poor countries, and the rate of growth did markedly exceed that of the West, but the conventional narrative confuses correlation with causality. It tries to fit events to ideological preferences, which assume that we are all the same, that if Europeans could progress, so should everyone else, and that all that matters are correct incentives and appropriate institutions.

The beginning and end of the Soviet communist era in newspaper headlines. The overthrow of Kerensky's interim government was the start of Bolshevik rule. To be precise, the Bolsheviks took over shortly thereafter, when they disbanded the constituent assembly in in early 1918 and subsequently gradually did the same to all non-Bolshevik Soviets that had been elected. A little more than seven decades later, the last Soviet Bolshevik leader resigned. It is worth noting that by splitting the Russian Federation from the Ukraine and Belorussia, Yeltsin effectively removed Gorbachev from power – the latter was suddenly president of a country that no longer existed and chairman of a party that was declared illegal in Russia. [PT] – click to enlarge.

The claimed liberalization in the "emerging markets" after the collapse of the USSR did not really happen. Progress was always one step forward and two steps back. In some ways, government regulations and repression of businesses in the "emerging markets" have actually gotten much worse. Financed by increased taxes, governments have grown by leaps and bounds ! not for the benefit of society but for that of the ruling class ! and are now addicted to their own growth.

The ultimate underpinnings of the so-called emerging markets haven't changed. Their rapid economic progress during the past three decades ! a one-off event ! happened for reasons completely different from those assumed by most economists. The question is: once the effect of the one-off event has worn off, will emerging markets revert to the stagnation, institutional degradation, and tyranny that they had leaped into soon after the European colonizers left?

The One-Off Event: What Actually Changed in the 1980s

In the "emerging markets" (except for China) synchronized favorable economic changes were an anomaly. They resulted in large part from the new, extremely cheap telephony that came into existence (a result of massive cabling of the planet implemented in the 1980s) and the subsequent advent of the new technology of the internet. The internet enabled instantaneous transfer of technology from the West and as a consequence, unprecedented economic growth in "emerging markets."

Meanwhile, a real cultural, political, and economic renaissance started in China. It was an event so momentous that it changed the economic structure not just of China, but of the whole world. Because China is seen as a communist dictatorship, it fails to be fully appreciated and respected by intellectuals who are obsessed with the institution of democracy.

But now that the low-hanging fruit from the emergence of the internet and of China (which continues to progress) have been plucked, the "emerging markets" (except, again, for China) are regressing to their normal state: decay in their institutions, stagnant economies, and social strife. They should still be called the "third world."

There are those who hold China in contempt for copying Western technology, but they don't understand that if copying were so easy, Africa, the Middle East, Latin America, and South Asia would have done the same. They were, after all, prepared for progress by their colonial history.

European colonizers brought in the rule of law and significantly reduced the tribal warfare that was a matter of daily routine in many of the colonies ! in the Americas, Africa, the Middle East, and Asia. Britain and other European nations set up institutional structures that allowed for the accumulation of intellectual and financial capital. Western-style education and democracy were initiated. But this was helpful in a very marginal way.

What is Wrong with the Third World

For those who have not traveled and immersed themselves in formerly colonized countries, it is hard to understand that although there was piping for water and sewage in Roman days, it still isn't available for a very large segment of the world's population. The wheel has existed for more than 5,000 years, but a very large number of people continue to carry water in pots on their heads.

Lead piping supplying water to homes already existed in Roman days, 2000 years ago.

The Ljubljana Marshes Wheel, which is more than 5,000 years old

There are easily a billion or more people today, who have no concept of either the pipe or the wheel, even if they went to school. It is not the absence of technology or money that is stopping these people from starting to use some basic forms of technology. It is something else.

Sir Winston Churchill, the war-time Prime Minister of Britain, talking about the future of Palestine said:

"I do not admit that a great wrong has been done to the Red Indians of America or the black people of Australia. I do not admit that a wrong has been done to these people by the fact that a stronger race, a higher-grade race, a more worldly wise race has come in and taken their place."

Cigar-puffing British war-time PM Winston Churchill was as politically incorrect as they come. If he were alive today, he would probably be labeled the newest Hitler by the press and spend 90% of his time apologizing. Perhaps we shouldn't mention this, but there are many Churchill monuments dotted across Europe and one can be found in Washington DC as well (alert readers will notice that a decidedly non-triggered Washington Post fondly remembered Churchill as an "elder statesman" a mere 10 months ago; rest assured that won't stop the social justice warrior brigade if they decide to airbrush him out of history). Just to make this clear, your editor is not exactly the biggest fan of the man who traded away half of Europe to Stalin because he felt he could "trust the Soviet communist government" and who was clearly a tad too enamored of war, a characteristic Robert Kaplan described in his strident, amoral pro-war screed Warrior Politics: Why Leadership Demands a Pagan Ethos as follows: "Churchill's unapologetic warmongering arose not from a preference for war, but from a breast-beating Victorian sense of imperial destiny " Neither the breast-beating nor the sense of imperial destiny are really our thing, but we tip our hat to the man's utter lack of political correctness and his associated willingness to offend all and sundry with a nigh Trumpian alacrity and determination. [PT]

On Islam, he said:

"How dreadful are the curses which Mohammedanism lays on its votaries! Besides the fanatical frenzy, which is as dangerous in a man as hydrophobia in a dog, there is this fearful fatalistic apathy. The effects are apparent in many countries. Improvident habits, slovenly systems of agriculture, sluggish methods of commerce, and insecurity of property exist "

Talking about India he famously said:

"I hate Indians. They are a beastly people with a beastly religion."

A remark often attributed to Churchill, although this remains unverified, has certainly stood the test of time so far:

"If independence is granted to India, power will go to the hands of rascals, rogues, freebooters; all Indian leaders will be of low caliber and men of straw. They will have sweet tongues and silly hearts. They will fight amongst themselves for power and India will be lost in political squabbles. A day will come when even air and water will be taxed in India."

Europeans of that time clearly knew that there was something fundamentally different between the West and the rest, and that the colonies would not survive without the pillars and the cement European management provided.

With the rise of political correctness this wisdom was erased from our common understanding – but it is something that may well return to haunt us in the near future, as the third world fails to fulfill expectations, while people who immigrate to Europe, Canada, Australia and the US from there fail to assimilate.

The Missing Underpinnings: Reason And All That Depends On It

Until now, the hope among people in the World Bank, the IMF, and other armchair intellectuals was that once the correct incentives were in place and institutions were organized, these structures imposed from on high would put the third world on a path to perpetual growth. They couldn't have been more wrong.

The cart has been put in front of the horse. It is institutions that emerge from the underlying culture, not the other way around. And cultural change is a process taking millennia, perhaps even longer. As soon as Europeans quit their colonies, the institutional structures they left started to crumble.

Alas, it takes a Ph.D. from an Ivy League college and a quarter of a million dollar salary at the World Bank or the IMF to not understand what the key issue with development economics and institutional failures is: the missing ingredient in the third world was and is the concept of objective, impartial reason – the basis of laws and institutions that protect individual rights.

This concept of reason took 2,500 years to develop and get infused into the culture, memes, and genes of Europeans ! a difficult process that, even in Europe, was never fully completed. European institutions were at their root products of this concept.

A justly famous quote by Thomas Paine (a prolific writer with a side job as a founding father and revolutionary). Paine was deeply suspicious of self-anointed authorities, both of the secular and clerical variety, who in turn regarded him as dangerous. His writings inter alia provoked a so-called "pamphlet war" in Britain (it would be best if all wars were conducted via pamphlets). [PT]

Despite massive efforts by missionaries, religious and secular, and of institutions imposed on poor countries, reason failed to get transmitted. Whatever marginal improvement was achieved over 200 to 300 years of colonization is therefore slowly but surely undone.

Without reason, subsidiary concepts such as equality before the law, compassion and empathy won't operate. Irrational societies simply cannot maintain institutions representing the rule of law and fairness. The consequence is that they cannot evolve or even maintain institutions the European colonizers left behind.

Any institutions imposed on them ! schools, armies, elections, national executives, banking and taxation systems ! must mutate to cater to the underlying irrationality and tribalism of the third world.

Western Institutions Have Mutated

Education has become a dogma in "emerging markets", not a tool; it floats non-assimilated in the minds of people lacking objective reason. Instead of leading to creativity and critical thinking, it is used for propaganda by demagogues.

Without impartial reason, democracy is a mere tribal, geographical concept, steeped in arrogance. All popular and "educated" rhetoric to the contrary, I can think of no country in the non-western world that did well after it adopted "democracy."

The spread of nationalism (which to a rational mind is about the commonality of values) has created crises by unifying people along tribal lines. The most visible example is provided by events in the Middle East, but the basic problem is the same in every South Asian and African country and in most of South America.

India, the geographical entity I grew up in, was rapidly collectivized under the flag and the national anthem. It has the potential to become the Middle East on steroids, once Hindutava (Hindu nationalism) has become deeply rooted in society.

Assessing the Current Predicament

In Burma, a whiff of democracy does not seem to have inhibited a genocide perpetrated by Buddhists against the Muslim Rohingya. Thailand (which was not colonized in a strictly political sense) has gone silent, but its crisis continues.

Turkey and Malaysia, among the better of these backward societies, have embarked on a path of rapid regression to their medieval pasts. South Africa, which not too long ago was considered a first-world country, got rid of apartheid only to end up with something even worse.

The same happened with Venezuela, which was among the richer countries of the world in the not-too-distant past. It is ready to implode, a fate that may befall Brazil as well one day. Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nepal, and East Timor are widely acknowledged to be in a mess, and are getting worse by the day.

Indonesia took a breather for a few years and is now once again in the thrall of fanaticism. India is the biggest democracy, so its problems are actively ignored by the Western press, but they won't be for long, as India continues to evolve toward a police state.

Botswana was seen as one of the countries with the fastest and longest-lasting economic growth. What was ignored was the fact that this rather large country has a very small population, which benefited hugely from diamonds and other natural resources. The top political layer of Botswana is still a leftover from the British. The local culture continues to corrode what was left by them, and there are clear signs that Botswana is past its peak.

Part of the central business district in Gaborone, Botswana. Long time readers may recall an article we posted about 2.5 years ago: " Botswana – Getting it Right in Africa ". We are not sure if much has changed since then, but it is worth recalling that Botswana started out as the third-poorest country in Africa when it became independent in 1966 and is today one the richest. The very small population (by African standards) combined with the large income the country obtains from diamond mining no doubt played a role in this, but being rich in natural resources means very little per se . Botswana never fell for Marxism. When the country gained independence, its political leadership adopted democracy and free markets and never looked back. Botswana is a very homogenous society in terms of religious and tribal affiliations, which differentiates the country from most other former colonial territories in Africa. From our personal – admittedly by now a bit dated – experience, we can state that Botswana is the only African country in which one is unlikely to encounter any corruption – not even the lowliest government minion will ask for bribes as far as we could tell (in many African countries, officials begin demanding bribes the moment one wants to cross the border). Considering all that, we are slightly more hopeful about Botswana, but it is not an island. Deteriorating conditions in neighboring countries may well prove contagious at some point. [PT]

Papua New Guinea was another country that was doing reasonably well before the Australians left. It is now rapidly regressing to its tribal, irrational, and extremely violent norms, where for all practical purposes rape is not even considered a crime.

Conclusion: A Vain Hope

The world may recognize most of the above, but it sees these countries' problems as isolated events that can be corrected by further impositions of Western institutions, under the guidance of the UN or some such international (and therefore "non-colonialist") organization.

Amusingly, our intellectual climate ! a product of political correctness ! is such that the third world is nowadays seen as the backbone of humanity's future economic growth. Unfortunately, so-called emerging markets are probably headed for a chaotic future. The likeliest prospect is that these countries will continue to cater to irrational forces, particularly tribalism, and that they will consequently cease to exist, disintegrating into much smaller entities.

As the tide of economic growth goes out with the final phase of plucking the free gift of internet technology nearing its end, their problems will resurface rapidly – precisely when the last of those who were trained under the colonial system are sent to the "dustbin of history".

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doctor10 , Aug 20, 2017 9:06 PM

Its all about ideas-and which ones are adopted by society.

The USA has a very poor prognosis-has yet to shed its 20th century Bolshevick Baggage.

Occident Mortal -> doctor10 , Aug 20, 2017 9:17 PM

It's mostly down to culture.

Some people are more culturally predisposed to exploring and trying new things.

If you believe the future will be better than the past then you will be prepared to work to improve things, if you believe the world is in terminal decline and that the glory days were some time ago, either when gods or prophets did all the important stuff or when your locale was more prosperous then you will not be as encouraged to work on improvements and you will thend to hoarde meagre resources and live by thrift with minimal expenditure.

Oracle of Kypseli -> Occident Mortal , Aug 20, 2017 10:00 PM

I think that colonialism is in play again as the advance societies are starving for resources and will invest in these countries in exchange. This will change the trend into better education, better jobs and everything that comes with it for the middle classes but perpetuate slave wages for the uneducated masses.

The world is not changing but morphing. It's the nomenclature that changes for the sake of political correcteness and feel good predisposition.

DjangoCat -> Oracle of Kypseli , Aug 20, 2017 10:15 PM

The history of western investment in third world resources does not make for a pretty read. Look now at what has happened just in the last months of a major silver mine being closed in a small Central American country, where the local manager has been accused of murdering protestors and objectors to the mines presence in their midst, destroying the countryside.

The CIA seems to have had, as it's primary objective, the job of clearing the way for US and British, and Canadian industrial, infrastructure and mining interests to come in and take the resources. A good payoff to the man in power greases the wheels, and the people get nothing but a degraded environment and mammoth debt.

The next step is to restructure the debt, in the process privatizing state infrastructure at cut rate prices. This is nothing but mass rape and pillage.

Wake up.

Unknown User -> DjangoCat , Aug 20, 2017 10:54 PM

England never freed its colonies. It simply changed the means of enslavement from physical to financial.

Eeyores Enigma -> DjangoCat , Aug 21, 2017 12:38 AM

Too true DC but that truth doesn't work well with "American Exceptionalism" so we get articles like this one.

Ayreos -> Eeyores Enigma , Aug 21, 2017 3:57 AM

"American exceptionalism" is just a small-time ugly consequence of the actual phenomenon: good old imperialism, taught by the British. And there's nothing wrong with it. All European countries have accepted NATO and american influence on them willingly. They have all recognized and validated American exceptionalism themselves. As subjects of an empire they now complain that the Emperor is quickly losing its clothes,

Son of Thor -> Ayreos , Aug 21, 2017 6:43 AM

I'm making over $7k a month working part time. I kept hearing other people tell me how much money they can make online so I decided to look into it. Well, it was all true and has totally changed my life. This is what I do http://disq.us/url?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.jobproplan.com%3A68UoF1LgzM-Yo3S...

Diatom -> DjangoCat , Aug 21, 2017 8:53 AM

John Perkins books people...

Crazy Or Not -> Occident Mortal , Aug 21, 2017 5:38 AM

True you have to have "Ambition & Will" for change to stomach the difficult period of creating that change. (eg Gandhi, US independence etc).

...A major part of the reason was, ironically, the economic prosperity that had come through industrialization, massive improvements in transportation, and the advent of telecommunications, ethnic and religious respect, freedom of speech...

This however while a factor is also bias. Post WWII no weapons (other than US) were permitted in Pacific war region and a decisive factor in limiting the influence of the Brits in their pre war colonies. Post colonials also saw war as a way out of colonial rule, using US leverage to oust Brit influence.

edit - probably BritBob will go apoplectic with this? Cue "Rule Britania"

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kRwj1SmPF5w

...and other jingoistic bollocks ;)

Omen IV -> Occident Mortal , Aug 21, 2017 9:10 AM

"institutions emerge from the underlying culture, not the other way around"

There is no solution to an average IQ of 70 and the culture that results from that fact.

The only solution is $1,000 in return for a tubal ligation or vasectomy - 1,000,000 per day until completed

Oh regional Indian -> doctor10 , Aug 20, 2017 9:19 PM

That zionist bastard churchill was not prognosticating about india, he was merely telling the world what they were going to do, ie., leave the country in the hands of rouges and rascals.... who have ruled and looted and destroyed India for their city of london masters ever since.

It's the joos who hate indians and of course churchill wasa closet joo...

https://aadivaahan.wordpress.com/2010/07/13/whither-india/

SethPoor -> Oh regional Indian , Aug 20, 2017 9:50 PM

Are closet Jews circumcised?

Koba the Dread -> SethPoor , Aug 21, 2017 1:41 AM

If they remain in the closet, they are certainly circumspect.

buttmint -> Oh regional Indian , Aug 21, 2017 12:41 AM

...all ZHers owe themselves trek to Mother India, quite a head turning experience. One comes to appreciate the West's "can-do philosophy."

This approach to problem solving is in small measure in India. India's fine burgeoning medical capital in Chennai (old Madraas) is a testament to talented Indians being schooled in Occidental universities and then returned to Mother India to set up shop. In many ways, India will lead the West OUT of their self-imposed medical nemesis. There is much progress in India. All Indians love to ORATE. You betcha, they stand on the corner and begin lecturing. A much better approach than USA's 535 idiots and grifters that make up the US Congress.

My own hunch is that India will eclipse the remarkable progress of China. Stay tuned as the world squirms.....

Koba the Dread -> buttmint , Aug 21, 2017 1:45 AM

Hunches are like hunchbacks: I don't want either one of them to ring my bells. After over fifty years of visiting and doing business in India, I go no more. While I love the people there, the country has become an abyss I no longer wish to stare into.

Oh regional Indian -> Koba the Dread , Aug 21, 2017 2:54 AM

Unfortunately, it has become quite the living hell....

Western model of development + rampant corruption + poor engineering standards have made this a hotch-potch of a rending screech of a marriage between east and west....

Ayreos -> Oh regional Indian , Aug 21, 2017 3:51 AM

Perhaps it's time to admit Indians got a chance to take their country back and move their society forward, seen through nationalist Gandhi, but Indians neither want nor understand the concept of moving forward.

Without the "western model of development" there would be no development in India for millennia.

Kobe Beef -> Ayreos , Aug 21, 2017 5:20 AM

Without the Aryan colonization/admixture of many millennia ago, there would never have been any civilization on the Indian Subcontinent.

The Second Aryan invasion (ie British colonialism) left barely enough behind to last more than the coming century.

The differing subspecies of hominids are neither fungible nor equal . But there is huge amount of paper profits to be derived from pretending otherwise. There is a lot of ruin to be extracted from the Commons. At home, The African Equality Racket has garnered trillions so far, with no sign of stopping. Abroad, The Afghan Equality Racket has garnered trillions so far, with no sign of stopping. No signs of progress with either hominid population. And yet, we still have people arguing that culture is somehow separate from biology.

But back to the topic at hand..

Prediction: India returns to barbarism and warring superstitions.

misnomer00 -> Kobe Beef , Aug 21, 2017 7:09 AM

Aryan is a word found only in sanskrit and no other indo euro language so you can go and suck some aryan dick

Kobe Beef -> misnomer00 , Aug 21, 2017 10:17 AM

Yes, Sanskrit is an Aryan language. There are a whole host of others, owing to The White Man's far-ranging conquest of primitive hominids. Or homos, in your case, cocksucker. Maybe your great great 15 grandmother appeared human enough to serve as a concubine.

And the Buddha had blue eyes.

Yet here you are trying to insult a White Man,

on the White Man's tech,

in the White Man's language.

Bixnood, faggot. You don't matter, and never did.

Another regiona... -> Kobe Beef , Aug 21, 2017 1:05 PM

Sanskrit is an aryan language? Then explain to me one thing. The rig veda (the oldest agreed upon text written in sanskrit) is centered around worshipping the river saraswati. And the river saraswati dried upon before/around 1900 B.C and aryans 'came' to india in 1700 B.C. Second....if sanskrit was foreign in origin, why havent we found anything equivalent to sanskrit in the 'aryan' nazi homelands? Indus valley civilisation had indoor plumbing, flush toilets, planned streets, sewage systems that took sewage away from individual homes out of the city. No civilisation that i am aware of had that at that time. Dont believe me? Read up about indus valley civilisation. They had it right until 'aryans' came. And then india went back to mud huts and shitting on streets.

As for buddha having blue eyes. turquoise was used to represent ancient famous people as it could be used to represent 'eyes' as it looked like 'eyes'. Thats why torqouise was used. And torqoise only comes in blue and white not in black and white even if it does its very rare. Blue and white is more easily available. That is why it was used. So it doesnt necessairly mean buddha or other famouse people's pictures or statues who had blue torqoise representing their eyers.....had blue eyes in real life.

asstrix -> Ayreos , Aug 21, 2017 5:21 AM

The western way of moving forward is about consuming, using up resources. Once the resources are gone, they have to find a new place to plunder, in order to again move forward.

The eastern culture is in general about living in a sustainable manner, in harmony with nature. Their way is more about trade and not war. This is why they got conquered so easily.

Now I can't say which is better. Plundering and moving forward or staying put and living in peace with nature. My only hope is that the easterners have enough of the western values already in them to not repeat the old mistakes again.

Another regiona... -> Oh regional Indian , Aug 21, 2017 4:16 AM

Have you read the email i sent you?

Another regiona... -> Oh regional Indian , Aug 21, 2017 2:50 AM

I sent a very important email to your email address 66zoltan, read it. Trust me its worth your time.

Tallest Skil -> doctor10 , Aug 20, 2017 9:40 PM

Reminder that Europe (((gave up))) the entire colored portion of the map above because Germany wanted a land corridor to East Prussia.

Radical Marijuana -> doctor10 , Aug 21, 2017 12:08 AM

The main obstacle to adopting superior memes is that those require Superior murder systems to back them up ...

Son of Captain Nemo , Aug 20, 2017 9:32 PM

"...the hope among people in the World Bank, the IMF, and other armchair intellectuals was that once the correct incentives were in place and institutions were organized, these structures imposed from on high would put the third world on a path to perpetual growth. They couldn't have been more wrong..."

Anyone who tracked the likes of Hans Adler a German/Brazilian Jew who worked for the World Bank in the 60s and 70s and who I studied under at George Mason University in the 80s knows that the "Latifundio/Minifundio" land tenure structure was the mechanism and means to exploit the gold fillings "literally" out of the mouths of the natives that owned and tended their lands throughout Latin America from the 40s through the 80s doing what the World Bank and IMF always has done it's best to get the multinationals in to take over the most important arable land for exploitation through "incentivized" loan deals that ended up robbing them of all their ownership for worthless "shit paper"!... Rinse and repeat for the "model" used everywhere else especially Middle Eastern oil.

John Perkins solidified it in his work "Confessions of an Economic Hit Man" 25 years later...

Too little too late I'm afraid. Only wish there were many more like him!

DemandSider -> Son of Captain Nemo , Aug 21, 2017 1:05 AM

I only wish Perkins had explained the role of the dollar. This book,

'The Hidden Hand of American Hegemony' 'Petrodollar Recycling and International Markets' explains that better. He does explain how The IMF and World Bank keep them in line with debt, though.

The Cooler King , Aug 20, 2017 9:23 PM

"There are easily a billion or more people today, who have no concept of either the pipe or the wheel"

But they can balance a mean jug of water on their head, which makes make them perfect candidates to GET RICH buying cryptos!

Moe Hamhead -> The Cooler King , Aug 20, 2017 9:30 PM

Obummer removed Churchill's bust from the Oval office! He was offended by his graven image. I recall that it has since been brought back.

DjangoCat -> The Cooler King , Aug 20, 2017 10:06 PM

Read em and weep.

Advoc8tr -> The Cooler King , Aug 21, 2017 12:40 AM

Make that a billion + 1 ... cryptos are the new wheel, pipe, internet.

Rebelrebel7 , Aug 20, 2017 9:31 PM

It looks like someone put the teachers in charge of Wikipedia! It used to be a very accurate source of information! I have recently been finding extreme errors on it and never have until about a month ago! I believe that universities feel threatened by It! This info please chart is correct and the Wikipedia chart is incorrect!

https://www.infoplease.com/history-and-government/us-government/composit...

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Party_divisions_of_United_States_Congresses

Haitian Snackout -> Rebelrebel7 , Aug 20, 2017 10:34 PM

It is and always has been a front. But like many other things, it contains the lie and the truth together. The lie at the top of the page and the truth at the bottom. See if you can take it from there. That's the only clue I will offer today. Best of luck!

Rebelrebel7 -> Haitian Snackout , Aug 20, 2017 11:25 PM

Well, it wasn't that way previously, however, the lie on top and truth on the bottom would be congruent with the way that the establishment and media operate, without question!

Koba the Dread -> Rebelrebel7 , Aug 21, 2017 1:50 AM

Pal, if you never found errors in Wikipedia until a month ago, I must presume that you started to learn to read about a month ago.

Question: If one is dead dumb stupid and ignorant, how would one know whether a Wikipedia article is true or false?

Farmerz , Aug 20, 2017 9:30 PM

I'm making over 7k a month selling new lead free head jugs to turd worlders.

Jason T , Aug 20, 2017 9:49 PM

WOW... excellent post!

TuPhat -> Jason T , Aug 20, 2017 11:20 PM

I agree, except for the part about the internet being responsible for wealth. That part is garbage. Internet wealth is non productive and eventually a drain on any economy.

Koba the Dread -> TuPhat , Aug 21, 2017 1:53 AM

How can you say that. Some toad earlier in the comments said he is making 7k a month from the internet. Doubting him is like doubting a Wikipedia article.

Entitled_TD , Aug 20, 2017 9:56 PM

Patronizing views on these "3rd world" areas or whatever you may call them...Whatever you say and no matter if you are 100% right about the differences in culture, there is no escaping the fact that these people were "fine" before europeans came along and fucked them up. Cultural relativism is 100% true in this case. Doesn't matter if they were raping babies or whatever, that is their culture and has nothing to do with ours. It was our bullshit christianity and culture that gave us the bullshit rationale to destroy whatever existing cultures we found. So what if they wouldn't have come up with the wheel, plumbing, or the internet - that gave europeans no right to do whatever they wanted wherever they wanted. Hard truth for you pos ZHers to swallow, but no way around it. And the funny thing is now you have the gall to say that these other cultures are destroying ours! HAHAHAHAHAHAHA! Payback is a Bitch!

armageddon addahere -> Entitled_TD , Aug 20, 2017 11:27 PM

So you must be happy we corrected the error by leaving, more than 50 years ago. And now they have gone back to being "fine".

Advoc8tr -> Entitled_TD , Aug 21, 2017 12:49 AM

How do you figure that conclusion ? In THEIR cultures 'might makes right' so by invading and subjugating "we" were playing by their rules. It is hypocritical on our part but only because we deny our history and the reality of superiority (in terms of industrialisation and military strength etc) in preference for politically correct feel-good lies.

Yen Cross , Aug 20, 2017 9:59 PM

Hopefully Bill Gates fossilizes in his doomsday bunker.

DjangoCat , Aug 20, 2017 10:02 PM

Read "The Confessions of an Economic Hit Man". IMF, USAID and BIS have worked in unison to rape and pillage the "Third World"

This is not a problem of the colonies falling apart, it is a problem of deliberate overselling of debt with a side of mandated privatisation, followed by ruin and sale of government assets, followed by grinding povery and tax to pay the interest on the ever climbing debt.

This is a system of overt debt slavery disguised as aid.

I think this piece is white wash propaganda. Tylers??

Koba the Dread -> DjangoCat , Aug 21, 2017 2:00 AM

Well said, Cat! The occupying nations left a cadre of native criminals behind to enslave their countrymen. The cadre of native criminals take their cut and pass the rest uphill to London, Paris or New York. They call it "Independence"! Sort of like what happened in the new United States of America where farmers and artisans fought for freedom from Great Britain and New York, Massachusetts and Virginia aristocrats took over the country.

Scanderbeg , Aug 20, 2017 10:28 PM

Of course he omits the most important reason. It doesn't need to be this complicated.

They are simply dumber than whites and E. Asians. Inbreeding is common in ME countries and Pakistan for example has an average IQ of around 70. In Sub Saharan Africa it is only 65 which means they are effectively retarded.

I read a story recently that a tanker overturned on the road in Pakistan and several hundred people were blown up while trying to siphon the gas.

Now that's fucking stupid. Something like that would never happen in a Western country.

Every presumption of SJW's is based on insane lie that all groups and races are intrinsicly equal intellectually. This is clearly not the case though of course there are some exceptions.

The left wanted to crucify the geneticist James Watson merely for suggesting this was the case.

Oh regional Indian -> Scanderbeg , Aug 20, 2017 10:40 PM

You need to read up on a litle history my friend..... your post is ignorant at so many levels, it's laughable. The number of highly advanced concepts that were stolen from the east over the centuries is legion. India and the ME were the root of all great kowledge, astrology, astronomy, metallurgy (Damascus steel came from India), mathematics (ZEro came from India)......

Whites were shitting on the streets and eating their dead not 300 years ago.

Jhonny come lately with a gun, get it? And all your scientific wonders are toxic to the world and humans. All of them, including your "medicine"....

Scanderbeg -> Oh regional Indian , Aug 20, 2017 11:08 PM

We don't need any tips from people who are still figuring out how to poo in the loo dindu. Come back and complain about western medicine when you have a real problem and you'll be begging for it. The third world is lucky we humor them. The insane population growth is because of bleeding hearts supplying food and medicine to places like Africa. The west has been dominating the world and international trade since the late 1400's. Most technology is spread through diffusion and the west proved to be the best and most open society to synthesize new ideas. That being said western culture is based in the Greco Roman intellectual tradition and Christianity. It has nothing to do with the your barbaric country which the British defeated and colonized easily.

IQ differences by race and region are a scientific fact and that data is easily available. Even India which is considered "smart" by most laymen is around 80 where as the average on Western countries is around 100.

[Aug 21, 2017] Awan Plot Thickens As NY Democrat Yvette Clarke Quietly Wrote-Off $120,000 Of Missing Tech Equipment

Aug 21, 2017 | www.zerohedge.com
Daily Caller , the more interesting component of the FBI's investigation could be tied to precisely why New York Democrat Representative Yvette Clarke quietly agreed in early 2016 to simply write-off $120,000 in missing electronics tied to the Awans.

A chief of staff for Democratic Rep. Yvette Clarke quietly agreed in early 2016 to sign away a $120,000 missing electronics problem on behalf of two former IT aides now suspected of stealing equipment from Congress, The Daily Caller News Foundation has learned.

Clarke's chief of staff at the time effectively dismissed the loss and prevented it from coming up in future audits by signing a form removing the missing equipment from a House-wide tracking system after one of the Awan brothers alerted the office the equipment was gone. The Pakistani-born brothers are now at the center of an FBI investigation over their IT work with dozens of Congressional offices.

The $120,000 figure amounts to about a tenth of the office's annual budget, or enough to hire four legislative assistants to handle the concerns of constituents in her New York district. Yet when one of the brothers alerted the office to the massive loss, the chief of staff signed a form that quietly reconciled the missing equipment in the office budget, the official told TheDCNF. Abid Awan remained employed by the office for months after the loss of the equipment was flagged.

If true, of course this new information would seem to support previously reported rumors that the Awans orchestrated a long-running fraud scheme in which their office would purchase equipment in a way that avoided tracking by central House-wide administrators and then sell that equipment for a personal gain while simultaneously defrauding taxpayers of $1,000's of dollars.

Meanwhile, according to the Daily Caller, CDW Government could have been in on the scheme.

They're suspected of working with an employee of CDW Government Inc. ! one of the Hill's largest technology providers ! to alter invoices in order to avoid tracking. The result would be that no one outside the office would notice if the equipment disappeared, and investigators think the goal of the scheme was to remove and sell the equipment outside of Congress.

CDW spokeswoman Kelly Caraher told TheDCNF the company is cooperating with investigators, and has assurance from prosecutors its employees are not targets of the investigation. "CDW and its employees have cooperated fully with investigators and will continue to do so," Caraher said. "The prosecutors directing this investigation have informed CDW and its coworkers that they are not subjects or targets of the investigation."

Not surprisingly, Clarke's office apparently felt no need whatsoever to report the $120,000 worth of missing IT equipment to the authorities... it's just taxpayer money afterall...

According to the official who talked to TheDCNF, Clarke's chief of staff did not alert authorities to the huge sum of missing money when it was brought to the attention of the office around February of 2016. A request to sign away that much lost equipment would have been "way outside any realm of normalcy," the official said, but the office did not bring it to the attention of authorities until months later when House administrators told the office they were reviewing finances connected to the Awans.

The administrators informed the office that September they were independently looking into discrepancies surrounding the Awans, including a review of finances connected to the brothers in all the congressional offices that employed them. The House administrators asked Clarke's then-chief of staff, Wendy Anderson, whether she had noticed any anomalies, and at that time she alerted them to the $120,000 write-off, the official told TheDCNF.

Of course, the missing $120,000 covers only Clarke's office. As we've noted before, Imran and his relatives worked for more than 40 current House members when they were banned from the House network in February, and have together worked for dozens more in past years so who know just how deep this particular rabbit hole goes.

Also makes you wonder what else Debbie Wasserman-Schultz and the Awans might be hiding. Certainly the decision by Wasserman-Shultz to keep Awan on her taxpayer funded payroll, right up until he was arrested by the FBI while trying to flee the country, is looking increasingly fishy with each passing day.

Anarchyteez , Aug 21, 2017 7:26 PM

Who cares? Nothing will happen.

bigdumbnugly -> Anarchyteez , Aug 21, 2017 7:27 PM

is it me or do all these criminal democrat representatives look the same?

Looney -> bigdumbnugly , Aug 21, 2017 7:29 PM

I have just one word you – "Huma Abedin".

I have two more words – "She was recommended as a White House intern by Prince Bandar, the then Saudi Ambassador".

Twenty years of spying in the open! Huma WAS the most successful spy in our history! ;-)

Looney

Jim in MN -> Looney , Aug 21, 2017 7:33 PM

How about this babe? Any relation?

http://thehill.com/50-most-beautiful/2016/294175-zoya-awan

Zoya Awan

Microsoft's Government Affairs Team

overbet -> Jim in MN , Aug 21, 2017 7:50 PM

And.......the equipment's hard drives were filled with classified data prior to sale.

AlaricBalth -> overbet , Aug 21, 2017 8:15 PM

18 U.S. Code § 4 - Misprision of felony

Whoever, having knowledge of the actual commission of a felony cognizable by a court of the United States, conceals and does not as soon as possible make known the same to some judge or other person in civil or military authority under the United States, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than three years, or both.

Normalcy Bias -> AlaricBalth , Aug 21, 2017 8:17 PM

Ohhhhhh NO she dint! Sumbody gonna axe her some quershuns!

AlaricBalth -> Normalcy Bias , Aug 21, 2017 8:19 PM

The Federal misprision of felony statute is usually only used in prosecutions against defendants who have a special duty to report a crime, such as a government official.

gmrpeabody -> AlaricBalth , Aug 21, 2017 8:23 PM

Another phukkin slimball seeps through the woodwork...

TwelveOhOne -> gmrpeabody , Aug 21, 2017 9:21 PM

CDW was Computer Discount Warehouse; I bought floppies from them and sold them in college.

TBT or not TBT -> The Cooler King , Aug 21, 2017 8:06 PM

I've got a deplorable feeling about this person.

Cardinal Fang -> overbet , Aug 21, 2017 9:01 PM

That's what I was thinking, the shit was full of classified and sold off to the highest bidder.

It wasn't about the replacement value of the missing computers, it was about the intrinsic value of used US Government Legislative Branch computers. Probably included network sdrowssap for a nominal fee...

Anarchyteez -> bigdumbnugly , Aug 21, 2017 7:29 PM

Now that's funny.

But seriously! How much money do you have to steal? How many people do you have to murder? And how many secrets do you have to sell before anything happens to any of these asshats ?

MagicHandPuppet -> bigdumbnugly , Aug 21, 2017 7:36 PM

Slightly O.T.: It would be interesting if a little thread of interrogation led them to the hundreds of thousands of dollars of hardware "lost" here in Charlotte before a massive fraudulent insurance claim was made. A little birdy told me of a number of people who worked as IT support at the Charlotte DNC national convention who personally benefited to a great degree of this said "lost" hardware. And, their "free goodies" were nothing compared to how much loot the top of the DNC food chain walked away with.

Jim in MN -> Anarchyteez , Aug 21, 2017 7:29 PM

We're past that point.

Things are going to happen bigly.

By hook, or by crook....they will.

LindseyNarrates... -> Anarchyteez , Aug 21, 2017 7:45 PM

Brother, you are 100% correct.

"Same fucking shit, just another mother-fucking day, in the God damned and under-siege (((Empire)))."

Lindsey

grunk , Aug 21, 2017 7:28 PM

DWS gets sacrificed at the altar of Clinton.

DRTexas -> grunk , Aug 21, 2017 7:30 PM

Yeah, I heard they were sacrificing a donkey.

the cork -> DRTexas , Aug 21, 2017 7:52 PM

.

Correct DRTexas - There's gonna be a donkey show

They're gonna sacrifice some poor donkey to fuck Debbie Wasserman-Schultz

That's her best chance of getting laid

Poor Donkey . Talk about cruelty to animals...

land_of_the_few -> grunk , Aug 21, 2017 8:13 PM

If she is thrown under the bus then the leash will pull her owners under the tires too.

Reminds me of a discussion about motorcycles and small pet dogs out for a walk...if they run out in front, aim for the leash?

Well you gotta decide somehow, even if the end result is inevitably pretty similar whichever way it goes!

Mazzy , Aug 21, 2017 7:28 PM

A lot of folks need to be lynched down by the big swamp. Lets start with the Awan brothers. Spies and saboteurs get no quarter.

Jim in MN -> Mazzy , Aug 21, 2017 7:37 PM

Speaking of Lynch....breaking at Circa News this evening:

https://www.circa.com/story/2017/08/21/politics/watchdog-group-will-ask-...

"They told us there was no documents related to the inquiry but there were," said Sekulow. "These documents show it went to the chief of staff of James Comey and he gets out there and acts like he was shocked and appalled by this but he knew about it. And didn't decide to do anything about it, except he decides to go public on that statement he made about Hillary Clinton and the investigation where he clears her."

JLee2027 -> Jim in MN , Aug 21, 2017 8:30 PM

What's to probe? We all know the Lynch-Clinton meeting was obstruction of justice. Just indict already.

land_of_the_few -> NoPension , Aug 21, 2017 8:15 PM

Perhaps so, but the Awans or their mystery handlers seem to have really pissed off the Feds for some reason.

The airport arrest was just a symptom of what had been in progress, clearly much juicy meat had been found beforehand.

Maybe they found a really big problem that had to be dealt with, and could not reasonably be ignored.

Plus, threatening a House police officer for doing his job is not a good way to win friends and influence people. That is a bad look.

Supafly -> land_of_the_few , Aug 21, 2017 8:57 PM

They likely did, so now it's down to negotiating who owes whom and for what, and who now does what, and how to deal with all the slighted whos, and fuck, I don't know. Gotta give them credit for all their effort though.

Grandad Grumps , Aug 21, 2017 7:31 PM

And the difference with this article is that the photos are not altered. Can you tell the difference?

wisefool , Aug 21, 2017 7:35 PM

Was the expensed "tech equipment" for the timeline when hillary won and they did it with non-secured resources running IT for POTUS?

I can not tell you enough folks. We dont need tax reform. We need moar wars on the other side of the planet. /sarc

My crotch itches , Aug 21, 2017 7:32 PM

And when I got caught doing 38 in a 25 mph zone, I got a nice big fine. Nothing for these crimes?

are we there yet -> My crotch itches , Aug 21, 2017 7:36 PM

Because you are one of the little people.

NoPension -> are we there yet , Aug 21, 2017 8:26 PM

We are below " little people".

We are irrelevant. Just keep paying, slave.

Someone correct me if I'm wrong.....

This country was founded on the principle that the individual had sovereign rights, imbued from God...and was the vessel of ultimate power.

Today...these illegally elected ( it's almost ALL proven a fraud) cocksuckers go in broke and come out the other end multimillionaires with legal immunity from anything, up to and including murder.

It's high time to water the fucking tree.

[Aug 21, 2017] Bannon Firing Proves Trump is Winging It by Robert W. Merry

To a certain extent Bannon firing was the sacrifices that converted Trump into Bush II. Globalist coalition won but this is a Pyrrhic victory. the problem that brought Trump to the White house -- crisis of neoliberalism and first of all neoliberal globalization is unsolvable within the neoliberal framework. And Trump administration has now nothing but his bastard version of neoliberal and deregulation and all that staff. And to this "Javanka" problem and Trump looks doomed to be failure.
Notable quotes:
"... He has failed. While he moved quickly on the immigration issue, he did so in such a ham-handed way that any prospect for momentum was lost before it could begin. On foreign policy he has belied his own campaign rhetoric with his bombing of Syrian military targets, his support for Saudi Arabia's nasty war in Yemen, his growing military presence in Syria, his embrace of NATO membership for Montenegro, his consideration of troop augmentations in Afghanistan, and his threat to consider military involvement in Venezuela's internal affairs. On trade, it must be said, he has sought to move in the direction of his campaign rhetoric, though with limited results thus far. ..."
"... In the meantime, he suffered a tremendous defeat with the failure of congressional Republicans to make good on their vow to end and replace the Affordable Care Act. His tax-overhaul initiative is far behind the kind of calendar schedule needed for smooth success (by this point in 1981 Reagan had secured both his big tax package and an even more controversial spending-reduction program). And Trump's infrastructure program must be seen as residing currently in Nowheresville. ..."
"... What we see in these defeats and stalled initiatives is an incapacity on the part of the president to nudge and herd legislators, to mold voter sentiment into waves of political energy, to fashion a dialectic of political action, or to offer a coherent vision of the state of the country and where he wishes to take it. Everything is ad hoc. No major action seems related to any other action. In a job that calls for a political chess master, Trump displays hardly sufficient skills and attentiveness for a game of political checkers. ..."
"... It's telling, but not surprising, that Trump couldn't manage his White House staff in such a way as to maintain a secure place on the team for the man most responsible for charting his path to the White House. This isn't to say that Bannon should have been given outsized influence within West Wing councils, merely that his voice needed to be heard and his connection to Trump's core constituency respected. ..."
"... But that's not the way Trump operates -- another sign of a man who, over his head at the top of the global power structure, is winging it. ..."
"... ...A major part of the reason was, ironically, the economic prosperity that had come through industrialization, massive improvements in transportation, and the advent of telecommunications, ethnic and religious respect, freedom of speech... ..."
"... The differing subspecies of hominids are neither fungible nor equal ..."
"... "There are easily a billion or more people today, who have no concept of either the pipe or the wheel" ..."
Aug 21, 2017 | www.theamericanconservative.com August 21, 2017

In the wake of Stephen Bannon's firing, it has become almost inconceivable that President Trump can avoid a one-term fate. This isn't because he sacked Bannon but because of what that action tells us about his leadership. In celebrating Bannon's dismissal, The Wall Street Journal wrote in an editorial: "Trump can't govern with a Breitbart coalition. Does he see that?" True enough. But he also can't govern without the Breitbart constituency -- his core constituency -- in his coalition. The bigger question is: Does he see that ?

It's beginning to appear that Trump doesn't see much of anything with precision or clarity when it comes to the fundamental question of how to govern based on how he campaigned. He is merely a battery of impulses, devoid of any philosophical coherence or intellectual consistency.

Indeed, it's difficult to recall any president of recent memory who was so clearly winging it in the Oval Office. Think of Lyndon Johnson and Richard Nixon, both of whom made huge mistakes that cost them the White House. But both knew precisely what they wanted to accomplish and how to go about accomplishing it. The result was that both accomplished big things. Ronald Reagan propelled himself into governing mode from campaign mode as if he had shot himself out of a cannon. Even Jimmy Carter and George H. W. Bush, who stumbled into one-term diminishment, demonstrated more leadership coherence than the current White House occupant.

Trump's political challenge on Inauguration Day was simple but difficult. He had to galvanize his political base and build from there to fashion a governing coalition that could give propulsion to his agenda. Further, that agenda had to give a majority of Americans a sense that the economy was sound and growing, that unnecessary foreign wars would be avoided, that domestic tranquility would prevail, that the mass immigration of recent years would be curtailed, that the health care mess would be fixed, and that infrastructure needs would be addressed.

He has made little or no progress on any of it. And now, with Bannon banished from the White House, the president even seems to be taking a cavalier attitude toward his core constituency, America's white working class, beset by sluggish economic growth, the hollowing out of America's industrial base, unfair competitive practices by U.S. trading partners, unchecked immigration, the opioid crisis, and a general malaise that accompanies a growing sense of decline.

Trump became president because he busted out of the deadlock crisis that had gripped America for years, with both parties rigidly clinging to shopworn nostrums that fewer and fewer Americans believed in but which precluded any fresh or original thinking on the part of the party establishments. Consider some of the elements of conventional wisdom that he smashed during the campaign.

  1. Immigration: Conventional thinking was that a "comprehensive" solution could emerge as soon as officials convinced voters that they would, at some point soon, secure the border, and then the 11 million illegals in the country could be granted some form of amnesty. After all, according to this view, polls indicated solid support for granting illegals a path to citizenship or at least legal residence. Thus the issue was considered particularly hazardous to Republicans. But Trump demonstrated that voter concerns about the magnitude of immigration -- both legal and illegal -- were more widespread and intense than the political establishment wanted to believe. He transformed the dynamics of the issue.
  2. Foreign Policy: Trump railed against George W. Bush's Iraq invasion, the ongoing and seemingly pointless war in Afghanistan, Barack Obama's actions to help overthrow Libya's President Muammar Qaddafi, and the previous administration's insistence that Syrian President Bashar al-Assad must leave office even though his toughest enemies, ISIS and al-Nusra, were also our enemies. He sought to sooth the tensions then gaining momentum between the United States and Russia, and he did so in the face of widespread hostility from most of the foreign policy establishment. In all this he signaled that, as president, he would formulate an entirely new grand strategy designed to align U.S. policy with U.S. power and avoid foreign wars with little connection to U.S. vital interests.
  3. Trade: Trump took on the establishment view that globalized free trade provided an automatic benefit to the U.S. economy and U.S. workers, even when big trading partners, particularly China, imposed non-tariff trade barriers that slammed America's waning industrial core and the country's working classes. Here again he demonstrated a strong body of political sentiment that had been ignored or brushed aside by the country's economic and financial elites.

The important point about these issues is that they all cut across partisan lines. That's what allowed Trump to forge a nontraditional coalition that provided him a slim margin of victory -- but only in the Electoral College. His challenge was to turn this electoral coalition into a governing one.

He has failed. While he moved quickly on the immigration issue, he did so in such a ham-handed way that any prospect for momentum was lost before it could begin. On foreign policy he has belied his own campaign rhetoric with his bombing of Syrian military targets, his support for Saudi Arabia's nasty war in Yemen, his growing military presence in Syria, his embrace of NATO membership for Montenegro, his consideration of troop augmentations in Afghanistan, and his threat to consider military involvement in Venezuela's internal affairs. On trade, it must be said, he has sought to move in the direction of his campaign rhetoric, though with limited results thus far.

In the meantime, he suffered a tremendous defeat with the failure of congressional Republicans to make good on their vow to end and replace the Affordable Care Act. His tax-overhaul initiative is far behind the kind of calendar schedule needed for smooth success (by this point in 1981 Reagan had secured both his big tax package and an even more controversial spending-reduction program). And Trump's infrastructure program must be seen as residing currently in Nowheresville.

What we see in these defeats and stalled initiatives is an incapacity on the part of the president to nudge and herd legislators, to mold voter sentiment into waves of political energy, to fashion a dialectic of political action, or to offer a coherent vision of the state of the country and where he wishes to take it. Everything is ad hoc. No major action seems related to any other action. In a job that calls for a political chess master, Trump displays hardly sufficient skills and attentiveness for a game of political checkers.

And now Stephen Bannon is gone. The rustic and controversial White House strategist represented Trump's most direct and compelling tie to his political base, the people who flocked to his rallies during the campaign, who kept him alive when his political fortunes waned, who thrilled to his anti-establishment message, and who awarded him the states of Ohio, Michigan, Wisconsin, and Pennsylvania. As the Journal says, Trump can't govern only with this electoral base. But if his support among these people wanes or dissipates, he will have no base from which to build -- and no prospect for successful governance.

It's telling, but not surprising, that Trump couldn't manage his White House staff in such a way as to maintain a secure place on the team for the man most responsible for charting his path to the White House. This isn't to say that Bannon should have been given outsized influence within West Wing councils, merely that his voice needed to be heard and his connection to Trump's core constituency respected.

But that's not the way Trump operates -- another sign of a man who, over his head at the top of the global power structure, is winging it.

Robert W. Merry, longtime Washington, D.C., journalist and publishing executive, is editor of The American Conservative . His next book, President McKinley: Architect of the American Century , is due out from Simon & Schuster in November.

doctor10 Aug 20, 2017 9:06 PM Its all about ideas-and which ones are adopted by society.

The USA has a very poor prognosis-has yet to shed its 20th century Bolshevick Baggage. Occident Mortal doctor10 Aug 20, 2017 9:17 PM It's mostly down to culture.

Some people are more culturally predisposed to exploring and trying new things.

If you believe the future will be better than the past then you will be prepared to work to improve things, if you believe the world is in terminal decline and that the glory days were some time ago, either when gods or prophets did all the important stuff or when your locale was more prosperous then you will not be as encouraged to work on improvements and you will thend to hoarde meagre resources and live by thrift with minimal expenditure. Oracle of Kypseli Occident Mortal Aug 20, 2017 10:00 PM I think that colonialism is in play again as the advance societies are starving for resources and will invest in these countries in exchange. This will change the trend into better education, better jobs and everything that comes with it for the middle classes but perpetuate slave wages for the uneducated masses.

The world is not changing but morphing. It's the nomenclature that changes for the sake of political correcteness and feel good predisposition.

DjangoCat Oracle of Kypseli Aug 20, 2017 10:15 PM

The history of western investment in third world resources does not make for a pretty read. Look now at what has happened just in the last months of a major silver mine being closed in a small Central American country, where the local manager has been accused of murdering protestors and objectors to the mines presence in their midst, destroying the countryside.

The CIA seems to have had, as it's primary objective, the job of clearing the way for US and British, and Canadian industrial, infrastructure and mining interests to come in and take the resources. A good payoff to the man in power greases the wheels, and the people get nothing but a degraded environment and mammoth debt.

The next step is to restructure the debt, in the process privatizing state infrastructure at cut rate prices. This is nothing but mass rape and pillage.

Wake up.

Unknown User DjangoCat Aug 20, 2017 10:54 PM

England never freed its colonies. It simply changed the means of enslavement from physical to financial.

Eeyores Enigma DjangoCat Aug 21, 2017 12:38 AM

Too true DC but that truth doesn't work well with "American Exceptionalism" so we get articles like this one.

Ayreos Eeyores Enigma Aug 21, 2017 3:57 AM

"American exceptionalism" is just a small-time ugly consequence of the actual phenomenon: good old imperialism, taught by the British. And there's nothing wrong with it. All European countries have accepted NATO and american influence on them willingly. They have all recognized and validated American exceptionalism themselves. As subjects of an empire they now complain that the Emperor is quickly losing its clothes,

Crazy Or Not Occident Mortal Aug 21, 2017 5:38 AM

True you have to have "Ambition & Will" for change to stomach the difficult period of creating that change.
(eg Gandhi, US independence etc).

...A major part of the reason was, ironically, the economic prosperity that had come through industrialization, massive improvements in transportation, and the advent of telecommunications, ethnic and religious respect, freedom of speech...

This however while a factor is also bias. Post WWII no weapons (other than US) were permitted in Pacific war region and a decisive factor in limiting the influence of the Brits in their pre war colonies. Post colonials also saw war as a way out of colonial rule, using US leverage to oust Brit influence.

edit - probably BritBob will go apoplectic with this? Cue "Rule Britania"

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kRwj1SmPF5w

...and other jingoistic bollocks ;)

buttmint Oh regional Indian Aug 21, 2017 12:41 AM ...

all ZHers owe themselves trek to Mother India, quite a head turning experience. One comes to appreciate the West's "can-do philosophy."

This approach to problem solving is in small measure in India. India's fine burgeoning medical capital in Chennai (old Madraas) is a testament to talented Indians being schooled in Occidental universities and then returned to Mother India to set up shop. In many ways, India will lead the West OUT of their self-imposed medical nemesis. There is much progress in India. All Indians love to ORATE. You betcha, they stand on the corner and begin lecturing. A much better approach than USA's 535 idiots and grifters that make up the US Congress.

My own hunch is that India will eclipse the remarkable progress of China. Stay tuned as the world squirms.....

Oh regional Indian Koba the Dread Aug 21, 2017 2:54 AM

Unfortunately, it has become quite the living hell....

Western model of development + rampant corruption + poor engineering standards have made this a hotch-potch of a rending screech of a marriage between east and west....

Ayreos Oh regional Indian Aug 21, 2017 3:51 AM

Perhaps it's time to admit Indians got a chance to take their country back and move their society forward, seen through nationalist Gandhi, but Indians neither want nor understand the concept of moving forward.

Without the "western model of development" there would be no development in India for millennia. Kobe Beef Ayreos Aug 21, 2017 5:20 AM Without the Aryan colonization/admixture of many millennia ago, there would never have been any civilization on the Indian Subcontinent.

The Second Aryan invasion (ie British colonialism) left barely enough behind to last more than the coming century.

The differing subspecies of hominids are neither fungible nor equal . But there is huge amount of paper profits to be derived from pretending otherwise. There is a lot of ruin to be extracted from the Commons. At home, The African Equality Racket has garnered trillions so far, with no sign of stopping. Abroad, The Afghan Equality Racket has garnered trillions so far, with no sign of stopping. No signs of progress with either hominid population. And yet, we still have people arguing that culture is somehow separate from biology.

But back to the topic at hand..

Prediction: India returns to barbarism and warring superstitions.

asstrix Ayreos Aug 21, 2017 5:21 AM

The western way of moving forward is about consuming, using up resources. Once the resources are gone, they have to find a new place to plunder, in order to again move forward.

The eastern culture is in general about living in a sustainable manner, in harmony with nature. Their way is more about trade and not war. This is why they got conquered so easily.

Now I can't say which is better. Plundering and moving forward or staying put and living in peace with nature. My only hope is that the easterners have enough of the western values already in them to not repeat the old mistakes again.

Tallest Skil doctor10 Aug 20, 2017 9:40 PM

Reminder that Europe (((gave up))) the entire colored portion of the map above because Germany wanted a land corridor to East Prussia.

Son of Captain Nemo Aug 20, 2017 9:32 PM

"...the hope among people in the World Bank, the IMF, and other armchair intellectuals was that once the correct incentives were in place and institutions were organized, these structures imposed from on high would put the third world on a path to perpetual growth. They couldn't have been more wrong..."

Anyone who tracked the likes of Hans Adler a German/Brazilian Jew who worked for the World Bank in the 60s and 70s and who I studied under at George Mason University in the 80s knows that the "Latifundio/Minifundio" land tenure structure was the mechanism and means to exploit the gold fillings "literally" out of the mouths of the natives that owned and tended their lands throughout Latin America from the 40s through the 80s doing what the World Bank and IMF always has done it's best to get the multinationals in to take over the most important arable land for exploitation through "incentivized" loan deals that ended up robbing them of all their ownership for worthless "shit paper" -- ... Rinse and repeat for the "model" used everywhere else especially Middle Eastern oil.

John Perkins solidified it in his work "Confessions of an Economic Hit Man" 25 years later...

Too little too late I'm afraid. Only wish there were many more like him --

DemandSider Son of Captain Nemo Aug 21, 2017 1:05 AM

I only wish Perkins had explained the role of the dollar. This book, 'The Hidden Hand of American Hegemony' 'Petrodollar Recycling and International Markets' explains that better. He does explain how The IMF and World Bank keep them in line with debt, though.

The Cooler King Aug 20, 2017 9:23 PM

"There are easily a billion or more people today, who have no concept of either the pipe or the wheel"

But they can balance a mean jug of water on their head, which makes make them perfect candidates to GET RICH buying cryptos

Moe Hamhead The Cooler King Aug 20, 2017 9:30 PM

Obummer removed Churchill's bust from the Oval office -- He was offended by his graven image. I recall that it has since been brought back.

TuPhat Jason T Aug 20, 2017 11:20 PM

I agree, except for the part about the internet being responsible for wealth. That part is garbage. Internet wealth is non productive and eventually a drain on any economy.

DjangoCat Aug 20, 2017 10:02 PM

Read "The Confessions of an Economic Hit Man". IMF, USAID and BIS have worked in unison to rape and pillage the "Third World"

This is not a problem of the colonies falling apart, it is a problem of deliberate overselling of debt with a side of mandated privatisation, followed by ruin and sale of government assets, followed by grinding povery and tax to pay the interest on the ever climbing debt.

This is a system of overt debt slavery disguised as aid.

I think this piece is white wash propaganda. Tylers??

Koba the Dread DjangoCat Aug 21, 2017 2:00 AM

Well said, Cat -- The occupying nations left a cadre of native criminals behind to enslave their countrymen. The cadre of native criminals take their cut and pass the rest uphill to London, Paris or New York. They call it "Independence" -- Sort of like what happened in the new United States of America where farmers and artisans fought for freedom from Great Britain and New York, Massachusetts and Virginia aristocrats took over the country.

Oh regional Indian Scanderbeg Aug 20, 2017 10:40 PM

You need to read up on a litle history my friend..... your post is ignorant at so many levels, it's laughable. The number of highly advanced concepts that were stolen from the east over the centuries is legion. India and the ME were the root of all great knowledge, astrology, astronomy, metallurgy (Damascus steel came from India), mathematics (Zero came from India)......

Whites were shitting on the streets and eating their dead not 300 years ago.

Jhonny come lately with a gun, get it? And all your scientific wonders are toxic to the world and humans. All of them, including your "medicine"....

[Aug 21, 2017] Problems Too Big And Too Many To Fix Trump Will Be The Fall Guy Zero Hedge

Aug 21, 2017 | www.zerohedge.com
Authored by Mike Shedlock via MishTalk.com,

The axe fell on Steve Bannon Friday.

Mid-day, mainstream media proclaimed stocks were up because of the firing. Stocks closed the day down. Apparently, stocks were both up and down due to Bannon.

Now Bannon is Back on the Outside , back at Breitbart, and happy to be there.

Stephen K. Bannon has always been more comfortable when he was trying to tear down institutions ! not work inside them.

With his return to Breitbart News, Mr. Bannon will be free to lead the kind of ferocious assault on the political establishment that he relishes, even if sometimes that means turning his wrath on the White House itself.

Hours after his ouster from the West Wing, he was named to his former position of executive chairman at the hard-charging right-wing website and led its evening editorial meeting. And Mr. Bannon appeared eager to move onto his next fight.

"In many ways, I think I can be more effective fighting from the outside for the agenda President Trump ran on," he said Friday. "And anyone who stands in our way, we will go to war with."

Among those already in Mr. Bannon's sights: Speaker Paul D. Ryan; Senator Mitch McConnell, the majority leader; the president's daughter Ivanka Trump and son-in-law, Jared Kushner; and Gary D. Cohn, the former president of Goldman Sachs who now directs the White House's National Economic Council.

Thanks But No Thanks

Trump thanked Bannon for his help during the campaign, but not for his tenure in the White House

I want to thank Steve Bannon for his service. He came to the campaign during my run against Crooked Hillary Clinton - it was great! Thanks S

! Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 19, 2017

Trump explicitly thanks Bannon for his time on the campaign. Not his 7 months in the W.H. as chief strategist.

Nothing to see here. https://t.co/gqDRj5I2zJ

! Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) August 19, 2017

New York Times Parting Shot

The New York Times editorial, Exit Steve Bannon , gave Banon a swift kick on his way out the door.

Mr. Bannon's exit is, of course, a relief. As the well-financed Pied Piper of the alt-right Breitbart crowd, Mr. Bannon at the pinnacle of White House policy making was a nightmare come to life.

But Mr. Bannon, who promptly returned to Breitbart as its executive chairman on Friday, still poses a danger for our broader politics. Outside the White House, he is freer to rally his forces against anyone who doesn't toe his nationalist-protectionist line. A Bannon-led right-wing backlash against Mr. Trump, who unleashed the worst impulses of nationalists in service to himself, would be a fitting comeuppance.

More Fun to Throw Mud

Clearly, it's far more fun to throw mud than have it thrown at you.

Lost in the Bannon and Trump bashing is one key question: Who is really the bigger threat, Hillary, Trump, or Bannon?

Why We Are Where We Are

We are in this mess because Obamanomics, war-mongering, Fed policies, and social handouts created a budget mess but did not solve any problems. People revolted, and Trump got elected.

When it comes to trade and protectionism, Trump is wrong. So is Bannon.

Those who think Hillary would have been any better on trade policy are mistaken. If you believe differently, then please take Today's Quiz: Donald Trump, Bernie Sanders, Hillary Clinton – Who Said It?

We would have a no-fly zone over Syria, had Hillary won. That would have risked a confrontation with Russia. Hillary wrecked Libya, and of course Obama and Bush had extremely misguided warmongering policies in the Mideast.

Obamacare was a failure, but no one on either side seems able or willing to fix it.

So here we are, with everything broken, and we still cannot get anything done. Republicans want more military spending and Democrats want more social spending. Warmongers on both sides want more war.

Art of Compromise

Compromise in Washington is more military spending and more social spending.

Repetitive "compromises" sent deficits soaring out of sight. On top of it all, the Fed blew massive bubbles in just about everything.

Problems Too Big and Too Many To Fix

One thing I expect Trump will get right, at least from a public union standpoint, regards appointments to the supreme court.

Overall, I hoped Trump would do better on many fronts. It was not to be. Trump could not drain the swamp. Partisan politics interfered, there was too much infighting, and there is nonsensical Russia bashing on both sides of the aisle.

The problems are too big and too many to fix. If you think Hillary would have fixed them you are delusional

To the victor, goes the blame. Trump will be the fall guy when this mess blows up. https://t.co/99d7BrUfak

! Mike Mish Shedlock (@MishGEA) August 19, 2017

[Aug 21, 2017] We have a very in-depth understanding of how Soros and other financial criminals fund neoliberals like Clinton. So who is funding the far right?

Aug 21, 2017 | www.moonofalabama.org

Almand | Aug 20, 2017 11:47:49 PM | 23

I've had a thought, I wonder if someone has any ideas. We have a very in-depth understanding of how Soros and other financial criminals fund liberal/leftist causes. So who is funding the right?

I don't mean the Chamber of Commerce, Koch Brothers tennis-playing types, I mean the Eurasianist/Trumpist popular right.

Peter Thiel has made no secret of his support for Trump and Ron Paul. Still, it's amazing that the right-wing alternative media apparatus is seemingly so well-oiled and widely circulated. Who is their secret sugar daddy. A lot of these folks present themselves as "concernced patriots", but I'm not that naïve.

[Aug 21, 2017] The Holy Roman Empire was a multi-ethnic complex of territories in central Europe that developed during the Early Middle Ages and continued until its dissolution in 1806.

Aug 21, 2017 | www.moonofalabama.org

@Madderhatter67 | Aug 20, 2017 4:46:05 PM | 4

James

The 1648 Treaty of Westphalia dissolved the Holy Roman Empire. (H.R.E.) Including all its institutions. Replacing it with a different model. Replacing parts was solve anything. It's a systemic problem. Revolution, the process of turning over is required.

I believe the new model will come from Eurasia.

Piotr Berman | Aug 20, 2017 5:39:22 PM | 6
Wikipedia: The Holy Roman Empire (Latin: Sacrum Imperium Romanum; German: Heiliges Römisches Reich) was a multi-ethnic complex of territories in central Europe that developed during the Early Middle Ages and continued until its dissolution in 1806.

The largest territory of the empire after 962 was the Kingdom of Germany, though it also came to include the Kingdom of Bohemia, the Kingdom of Burgundy, the Kingdom of Italy, and numerous other territories.

[Aug 21, 2017] We are witness to whether multi-national corporations and their supra-national institutions will continue to rule or if mankind will survive their break up.

Notable quotes:
"... Donald Trump and his family have been contained; encircled by retired military and Goldman Sachs associates. However, Globalists and Neocons can't help themselves with their deep-seated contempt of the little people plus the need for war for profit. ..."
"... Tearing down the symbols that reunited the nation after the last Civil War is a sure bet way to start a new one. ..."
Aug 21, 2017 | www.moonofalabama.org

virgile | Aug 20, 2017 3:06:32 PM | 3

The Neocons Are Pushing the USA and the Rest of the World Towards a Dangerous Crisis
The Saker

VietnamVet | Aug 20, 2017 8:43:01 PM | 14

@3 Thanks.

Words do matter. The Saker is about the best observer of the emerging multi-polar world. The USA has been dumped in the trash. We are witness to whether multi-national corporations and their supra-national institutions will continue to rule or if mankind will survive their break up.

Donald Trump and his family have been contained; encircled by retired military and Goldman Sachs associates. However, Globalists and Neocons can't help themselves with their deep-seated contempt of the little people plus the need for war for profit.

Tearing down the symbols that reunited the nation after the last Civil War is a sure bet way to start a new one.

[Aug 21, 2017] If you're Canadian, bend over and grab your ankles.

Aug 21, 2017 | www.moonofalabama.org

spudski | Aug 20, 2017 8:25:35 PM | 13

"After years without result, with days to the deadline, Canada's negotiator, Simon Reisman, who Chrystia Freeland recalls in the fond tones Hillary Clinton uses for Henry Kissinger, walked. Why? Because the U.S. wouldn't agree to a "mechanism" that superceded U.S. law. Ottawa was grim. Without a deal, we'd perish. The U.S. negotiator said: Canada needs a "face-saving gesture." President Reagan told his team to get creative.

They did. They didn't replace the U.S.'s unilateral right to impose costs on Canadian stuff with a neutral process to decide what's fair. They created a process to decide only whether the U.S. was accurately enforcing its own rules. That left everything as it was but called it dispute resolution."

http://rabble.ca/columnists/2017/08/minister-freeland-propagates-neoliberal-myth-free-trades-benefits

https://www.thestar.com/news/canada/2017/08/19/us-signals-trumps-buy-american-agenda-non-negotiable-in-nafta-talks.html

John Gilberts | Aug 20, 2017 9:30:54 PM | 15

Re Spudski - 13 and the NAFTA reneg: Good thing Chrystia Freeland and Justin Trudeau have the very best advising them...

Taking Summers' Advice Defies Logic
http://www.torontosun.com/2015/04/08/taking-summers-advice-defies-logic

[Aug 21, 2017] As the crisis unfolds there will be talk about giving the UN some role in resolving international problems.

Aug 21, 2017 | www.lettinggobreath.com

psychohistorian | Aug 21, 2017 12:01:32 AM | 27

My understanding of the UN is that it is the High Court of the World where fealty is paid to empire that funds most of the political circus anyway...and speaking of funding or not, read the following link and lets see what PavewayIV adds to the potential sickness we are sleep walking into.

As the UN delays talks, more industry leaders back ban on weaponized AI

[Aug 21, 2017] Why Explaining US Internal Strife Through Russian Influence Is Lazy and Unhelpful by Alexey Kovalev

Notable quotes:
"... By Alexey Kovalev, an independent journalist living and working in Moscow. Follow him on Twitter: @Alexey__Kovalev. Originally published at openDemocracy ..."
Aug 19, 2017 | www.nakedcapitalism.com
August 19, 2017 by Yves Smith Yves here. This is a well-argued debunking of various "evil Rooskie" claims and is very much worth circulating. Stunningly, there actually are people asserting that white supremacists and the figurative and now literal hot fights over Confederate symbols (remember that Confederate flags have been a big controversy too?) are part of a Russian plot. Help me. Fortunately their views don't seem to have gotten traction outside the fever-swamp corners of the Twitterverse.

Author Kovalev's bottom line: When you are doing the same thing Putin and his propaganda machine does, you're doing something wrong.

By Alexey Kovalev, an independent journalist living and working in Moscow. Follow him on Twitter: @Alexey__Kovalev. Originally published at openDemocracy

On 11-12 August, violent clashes erupted between the far-right Unite the Right movement and anti-fascist counter-protesters in Charlottesville, Virginia. One woman died when an alleged neo-Nazi sympathizer rammed a car into a crowd of counter-protesters. There were numerous injuries and a major national crisis erupted in the United States resulting from and inspired by the rapid rise of white nationalist, neo-Nazi and other similar sentiments far to the right of the political spectrum.

As it often happens these days, numerous people on Twitter immediately jumped in, pitching the so-called "hot takes" -- rapid, hastily weaved together series of tweets with often outlandish theories of what really happened. These instant experts, who have come to prominence in the wake of the Trump presidency, have carved out a niche for themselves by taking the most tangential or non-existent connection to anything Russian and "connecting the dots" or "just asking questions". The most egregious example is Louise Mensch , a former UK conservative pundit (and sometime MP) now residing in the US. Mensch is the most extreme example of a Twitter-age conspiracy-mongering populist . But there are other people, with more credible credentials, who are also prone to demanding that "ties with Russia" (via individuals, events and institutions) be investigated.

Immediately following the events in Charlottesville, the writer and consultant Molly McKew and Jim Ludes of the Pell Center , among others, chimed in with their "hot takes", repeating each other almost word for word: "We need to closely examine the links between the American alt-right and Russia." These particular expressions ("links between X and Russia", "ties with Russia", "Russian connections" or "close to Putin/Russian government") are, essentially, weasel words, expressions so elastic that they could mean anything -- from actively collaborating with senior Russian officials and secretly accepting large donations from to the vaguest, irrelevant connections mentioned simply for the sake of name-dropping Russia in an attempt to farm for more clicks.

Almost every person of Russian origin involved in the Trump drama is "Putin-connected", although in Russia that definition only applies to a tiny power circle of trusted aides and advisors, a select group of oligarchs running state-owned enterprises and close personal friends from before Putin's presidency. The exaggerated tone of reporting often suggests something more far-reaching, coordinated and sinister than a loose collection of unconnected factoids.

So, what do "links between the American alt-right and Russia" actually mean? Much of the allegations of American alt-right's "collusion" with Putin's regime rely on the fact that Richard Spencer, a divisive figure in this already quite loose movement, was once married to a woman of Russian origin , Nina Kupriyanova. Their current marital status is unclear and, frankly, irrelevant. Kupriyanova, a scholar of Russian and Soviet history with a PhD from the University of Toronto, is also a follower of Alexander Dugin, a larger-than-life figure in contemporary Russian media and politics. Because of Dugin's outsized presence in the western media where he is often, and quite erroneously, presented as "Putin's mastermind" or "Putin's Bannon", this connection is often enough to be declared the smoking gun in the crowdsourced investigation .

Dugin has been many things to many people over his decades-long, zig-zagging career as an underground occult practitioner in the Soviet years: philosopher, lecturer, one of the founding fathers of a radical movement, public intellectual, flamboyant media personality. But he is not a "Putin advisor" and never has been. Although Dugin is a vocal fan of the Russian president, has repeatedly professed his loyalty to Putin and has orbited the halls of Russian power for more than a decade, he hasn't accumulated enough influence to even keep a stable job.

In 2014, Dugin was fired from his position as a guest lecturer at the department of sociology of Moscow State University. Students and academic staff had complained for years about the "anti-scientific, obscurantist" atmosphere Dugin had created within the department (one petition filed by the students mentions Dugin "performing extrasensory experiments" on them during lectures). But the final straw was Dugin's interview where he agitated to "kill, kill, kill" Ukrainians in June 2014 -- the early stages of Russia's war campaign in Ukraine. Both Dugin and his patron, the dean of the sociology department, were promptly fired after a major media scandal.

Later, Dugin was quite unceremoniously removed from his position as a host on Tsargrad TV -- a right-wing, reactionary private network funded by "Orthodox oligarch" Konstantin Malofeyev and launched with the help of a former Fox News executive. All mentions of Dugin's show on Tsargrad simply disappeared from the network's website.

Although Richard Spencer's own writings for his Radix Journal do have visible Dugin inspirations, it's inconceivable that Dugin has any significant influence on the American right. His teachings are just too eclectic, esoteric and over-intellectualised for an average American neo-Nazi who just wants to see more white faces around him. In fact, Dugin's overarching idea of "Eurasianism" goes against the grain of "keeping America white and ethnically pure": at its core is an obscure early 20th century Orientalist school of thought which accentuated Russia's civilisational continuity with Mongolian and Turkic ancestors, as opposed to the spiritually alien West.

Russia's conservatives of all shades of right have indeed been long cultivating links with their brethren to the west of Moscow -- well before Putin appeared on the scene. These have been well documented by scholars of the far right such as Anton Shekhovtsov . After Putin's onslaught in Ukraine, Russia, in dire need of new allies, intensified efforts to strengthen those links .

A trove of leaked emails released by the hacker group Shaltai Boltai ("Humpty Dumpty") in December 2014 did indeed uncover a sinister plot to place Russia in the centre of a wide-ranging alliance of right-wing, far-right, pro-life, pro-"family-values", hardcore Christian and other similar organisations in Europe and both Americas. But there's little evidence that anything resembling the coveted "Black International" ever came to fruition. Only temporary, tactical alliances have been more or less successful, aimed at promoting shared common interests -- such as Italy's pro-Kremlin Lega Nord party lobbying for lifting EU's sanctions against Russia -- or values.

In the latter case, the dynamic is reversed: it's not Russia influencing the West and exporting its values, but vice versa. It's Russia's parliamentary ultra-conservatives like Yelena Mizulina (now a senator) who have been inspired and supported by the American religious right.

Russia's last public attempt to unite the European and American far-right ended in a major media scandal in early 2015 when the "International Russian Conservative Forum" in Saint Petersburg was widely criticised in the press. The forum's Russian official supporters from the "traditionalist" Rodina (Motherland) party allied with the ruling United Russia were forced to withdraw their endorsement, and no further attempts to organise the forum have been made. Propaganda outlets like RT are quietly shedding commentators with far-right sympathies like Manuel Ochsenreiter or Richard Spencer mentioned above in an attempt to cleanse their image as a safe haven for Holocaust deniers and white power enthusiasts. Only a couple of days after Charlottesville, Russian authorities banned The Daily Stormer, a virulently anti-Semitic "alt-right" website, which had temporarily sought refuge on Russian web space after having been refused service in the US.

There is little to no evidence that any of the above had anything to do with the tragic events in Charlottesville. The resurgence of murderous, hateful ideologies in the United States is a home-grown issue. Young men with identical haircuts and matching, uniform-like attires chanting "Blood and soil -- " in the streets of American cities are inspired and influenced by many things, but a bearded Russian mystic is hardly one of them. Attempting to explain internal strife in your country by "Russian influences", hastily put together disjointed and exaggerated phenomena, is intellectually lazy. It distracts from getting to the root of the problem by offering quick, easy answers to complicated questions.

Ironically, it's also a very Putin thing to do. Explaining Russia's internal issues by blaming the West's machinations is the Russian president's shtick. When you find yourself doing the same thing Putin and his propaganda machine does, you're doing it wrong.

[Aug 21, 2017] Debt based consum ption and speculation led to the roaring 20s and the debt deflation of the Great Depression. That created preconditions to fascism

Aug 21, 2017 | discussion.theguardian.com

ConBrio , 17 Aug 2017 07:45

The obligatory sanctimony about America's Nazi past might have included these for context.

Duke of Windsor's chatting up Hitler
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3464198/Photographs-Duke-Windsor-s-trip-Nazi-Germany-1937-met-Adolf-Hitler-sold-auction-1-000.html

The "SALUTE."
http://i.dailymail.co.uk/i/pix/2016/02/25/16/318E186100000578-0-It_was_on_this_trip_that_he_made_a_Nazi_salute_surrounded_by_uni-a-49_1456419156158.jpg

HARRY at a costume party a few years ago.

http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_rzkTyRo_8Fg/TUnolacSCeI/AAAAAAAAAPw/WXkU-jqCZsc/s1600/Nazi+Prince+Harry.jpg

THE the FUTURE QUEEN practicing the Nazi Salute:
https://www.nytimes.com/2015/07/21/world/europe/royal-familys-nazi-salute-in-1930s-stirs-debate-in-britain.html

http://gnosticwarrior.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/07/queen-elizabeth-nazi-salute.jpg

davidc929 -> NotIdefix , 17 Aug 2017 07:45
Race based supremacy was an element of German fascism. Italian fascism was based more on national supremacy. If fascism were to arise in America it would most likely have a strong religious element.
soundofthesuburbs -> GruntyMalunty , 17 Aug 2017 07:43
A lot more effort has probably gone into the cunning and manipulative parts than the system itself. They picked a pretty dire 1920s economics, neoclassical economics, that still has all its old problems.

1) The effect of debt on the economy. Leading to Japan 1989, US 2008, Irish and Spanish real estate collapses, Greece's collapse with austerity and the new normal of secular stagnation.

Today's neo-classical economics was around in the 1920s and it had exactly the same problem. Debt based consumption and speculation led to the roaring 20s and the debt deflation of the Great Depression.

The build up to 1929 and 2008.

https://cdn.opendemocracy.net/neweconomics/wp-content/uploads/sites/5/2017/04/Screen-Shot-2017-04-21-at-13.52.41.png

2) The difference between "earned" and "unearned" income. Leading to parasitical rentier economies, now spotted by one of today's Nobel Prize winning economists "Income inequality is not killing capitalism in the United States, but rent-seekers like the banking and the health-care sectors just might" Angus Deaton.

A flawed model of global, free trade that doesn't consider the minimum wage is set by the cost of living. Western labour is priced out of global labour markets by the high cost of living in the West exacerbated by rentier activity.

3) Bank credit should be directed into productive investment in business and industry, not blowing asset bubbles (e.g. real estate) and other financial speculation.

Klytie -> RedSperanza , 17 Aug 2017 07:42
In Fascism the party is the state. It is collectivist hence the socialist in the title with added national exceptionalism. While racism was always there Nazism was more focused on race than most. I'm not sure that I could identify anything like a Fascist party in the UK or US outside a very few, small fringe groups.
MikeInfinitum -> jochebed1 , 17 Aug 2017 07:40
Totalitarianism is a method of government that controls (or tries to) every aspect of its citizens lives. Fascism is an ultra-nationalist ideology that uses totalitarianism to achieve its aims.

The Soviet Union (under Stalin at least) was also totalitarian but obviously was communist rather than fascist.

Urlicht -> MikeInfinitum , 17 Aug 2017 07:38
"Fascism is a fundamentally patriarchal ideology. It envisions the creation of a new man conquering all before him, whilst the women stay home producing good fascist babies."

And yet, if the same ideology drapes itself in cloth and dogma, the left celebrate it.

NotIdefix -> marv , 17 Aug 2017 07:37
the religious right in the US are not fascists or inclined in that direction

anti-abortion, certainly
anti-same-sex-marriage, mostly,
anti-science, somewhat..

but they are certainly not united behind an ideology of race-based supremacy

snapster -> careenage , 17 Aug 2017 07:36
Not really. He adapted the constitution and manipulated the "Reichstag" from 1933. Not to mention the physical (and murder) of opponents and one time allies.
The Constitution was blatantly ignored and set aside by the NSDAP and the conservative politicians. The Social Democrats and Communists were "done away with.
PotholeKid -> Pete green , 17 Aug 2017 07:36
Meanwhile Henry Ford built vehicles in Germany for the German Army the Duponts supplied chemicals, the bankers funded the Nazi enterprise and IBM supplied the devices to track Hitlers deplorables so they could be rounded up for the work and death camps. These same captains of industry were quite happy to see American boys die for their self serving interests.
Chucky Cheese -> Ubermensch1 , 17 Aug 2017 07:35
The march went ahead though, didn't it? No one was prevented from saying anything. We heard it loud and clear. That Pie quote comes from Feb and relates to Berkeley cancelling Milo Yiannopoulos from speaking, which is a different situation.

He has a pop at Antifa violence handing Trump etc the moral high ground, which I get. The problem is that by equating Antifa with fascists, you are undermining the argument against actual fascists. The internet is awash with "Antifa just as bad" - which pulls the right wing into the centre ground and makes the Alt-right seem more reasonable. I know where he's coming from, but the emphasis is off. It's a nice soundbite - but I don't know how helpful it is.

Djek Durgen Deign , 17 Aug 2017 07:35
Now I in no way condone violence and least of all from people who are into any kind of racial supremacy, however, I cannot help feeling that the MSM are making a mountain out of a mole hill here. The Charlottesville "unite the right" rally was only attended by some 500 participants, I am not aware of the figures for the counter protest but they were probably more numerous. The violence was shocking but probably could have been avoided had the police not disbanded the "unite the right" rally and then stood down leaving both groups to duke it out in the streets of Charlottesville.

The point I'm making is that 500 far right nutters don't mark a new rise of Nazism, but the current climate of calling anybody with slightly right leanings Nazis could push things that way.

Urlicht -> Iansguardian007 , 17 Aug 2017 07:34
Was it thousands who drove the car into that lady too? No. It was one.

Sod the far right - they'd see me strung up for my skin colour.

But equally sod the left - they are the ones who would encourage and 'empathise' with my differences - thus driving me into the clubs and bats of the far right. EG at the last election, I only received racist literature from one party - Labour - celebrating the issues that my race celebrates - because to my local Labour MP, I am a group identity, not an individual.

Travis -> jdanforth , 17 Aug 2017 07:33
The Republican Party embraced racism via Nixon's Southern Strategy in 1968, getting their inspiration from George Wallace's independent run for President. This brought great benefit to the GOP, allowing them to take over the South from 1968 through 1980. They doubled down on this strategy during the Obama presidency, with dog-whistle racist politics that brought them back to power after being decimated in the 2008 elections.

Citing racist Democrats of the past is about as meaningful as saying that Lincoln was a Republican and emancipated the slaves, so the Republican Party isn't racist. It doesn't pass the laugh test.

Treflesg , 17 Aug 2017 07:33
America is similar to the UK in many ways when I visit but there are also big differences.
The class system is less subtle, people are literally divided by walls, and even transport e.g. all the middle classes drive in big cars, whereas the bus is full of working class people. And people openly exclude lower classes in their language (rednecks, white trash and so on).
And in addition to the palpable class difference, they then have a whole race based division as well, the bus is almost all not white, the maids are almost all not white, the posh establishments are white majority etc. And people of all races talk about it all the time. You meet them and in the first few sentences they inform you of their ethnic or cultural background and ask yours. This is something in the UK that I am not used to.
My point is that it is all very well blaming a minority of nutters, or extremists, but actually, the whole of society in the USA is race and class obsessed and it will take all of you to sort this out.
MusicalCheeseBurger -> ID4368353 , 17 Aug 2017 07:30
This is the most idiotic comment I've ever read. There have been a range of white supremacist states in the 20th century that absolutely demonstrate that is it perfectly possible for this ideology to control a country. South Africa was a white supremacist state for over 40 years until 1991 - were they all sad sacks? What about the Germans and Italians in the early 20th century? Whole countries of sad sack losers?

It is amazing to see history repeating itself, including the anti-communist rhetoric of the right. The Nazis effectively created a strawman out of the communist party in Berlin through effective use of propaganda and targeted violence erroneously blamed on the communists (such as the Reichstag Fire). Communists don't make people hate others because of their race.

The fact that you assume that anyone who disagrees with fascism and is concerned about the parallels with the current resurgence in nationalist rhetoric now and in the interwar period is a on the 'far left' says a lot more about your politics than mine.

vonZeppelin , 17 Aug 2017 07:29
Fascism happened in Italy in the 20s. Nazism occurred in German in the 30s. Modern groups may imitate those movements but they should be labelled as far-right extremist and racists .
Urlicht -> ID4368353 , 17 Aug 2017 07:29
"It's like the left want there to be powerful and dangerous fascists. Why?"

This is true in the UK too. The left would rather paint people as racists and fascists, because then they feel that they can attack them.

The problem is, that often the left work towards the goals of the fascists. Take identity politics for example - great for those that want to be defined by their 'identity grouping', foul racism for the rest of us who want to be judged by the same standards as everyone else - for our choices as adults, not our genes at birth.

DeltaFoxWhiskyMike -> MusicalCheeseBurger , 17 Aug 2017 07:28
Out of 325 million people they managed to scare up 250 oddballs to a heavily publicized event in Virginia? Check the coverage, and they are outnumbered by the reporters and camera crews, which greatly magnified the impact of the rally. They are not the face or forefront of any mass movement, though they are being portrayed as such by opponents desperate for the support (and donations) that political conflicts bring.
People are not dismissing the possibility of extremists finding success in American politics. They are, however, dismissing efforts to dismiss any and all political opposition to people like you as extremists, and the efforts to tie every lunatic fringe anywhere to our elected government that you oppose.
This is a really big country. Your textbook has damned few students. Have you noticed?
SteveRP -> haribol , 17 Aug 2017 07:27
There seems to be quite a lot of evidence that many Americans do subscribe to contempt for "the Other". "God Bless America" at the end of every political speech gives a clear indication they consider themselves special under God. The obsession with their flag, treating it with almost religious reverence, is odd.
wardadkiwi -> PJKatz , 17 Aug 2017 07:26
In nazi Germany it grew from the ground up and their certainly wasnt a coherent plan from the ruling Junkers class to introduce fascism .Like with Drumpf the racist dregs were the core around which the nazis built and the wealthy backed them once they were in power.
PotholeKid , 17 Aug 2017 07:26
Missing from this is the fact that the most powerful elites like Henry Ford, J.P Morgan the Dupont Family and many other bankers and industrialists openly supported fascism. No question these folks were behind the plot to overthrow the Roosevelt government.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7RD-ISImWgw

Urlicht , 17 Aug 2017 07:26
Are politicians to be judged by the worst that support them as the least worst option?

Trump has the support of some nasty individuals. Likewise here in the UK, Labour seems to have the support of some extremely socially regressive groups. Do we judge Labour by the worst of their voters then?

Daniel Kells -> DrChed4r , 17 Aug 2017 07:26

But none of them enjoy any popular support, and they never will


I suppose this is one of the few good things about Republican/Democrat dominance in the US, either fall flat on your face by striking out on your own or be forced to comprimise by signing up with one of the big 2
SavannahLaMar , 17 Aug 2017 07:25
I can't help thinking all this talk of fascism is disingenuous, because America has always been an apartheid state, and up until quite recently there were even tensions and prejudices between different white groups. Nevertheless the idea that America is fundamentally a white supremacist nation is generally unspoken until it is challenged. It was last challenged in the sixties by the civil rights movement, and the response was violent. Most recently it was challenged by the election of Barack Obama, and predictably the reaction was violent. That isn't to say that there aren't millions of decent Americans who are not racist, or that people of colour cannot overcome these barriers, or that the nation doesn't have a fine tradition of social justice movements, or that racism is the only injustice a human beng can suffer. But, for all the mythmaking about liberty and justice for all, there is no getting away from the fact that the nation's origins lie in genocide, people trafficking, forced labour, caste-based inequality, environmental despoliation and exclusivist religious cultism. These demons have never gone away.
ParcelOfRogue , 17 Aug 2017 07:25
The best counter to Fascism is PR voting.

Hitler was not let in by PR as is sometimes claimed, but after getting 30 odd percent repeatedly, he used political maneuvering and street intimidation to force his opponents out of the way and sieze power, immediately ending democracy. Instead, if Germany had elections under First Past the Post at the time, Hitler's 30 odd percent might have produced a Parliamentary majority.

CharlesBradlaugh -> Charmant_mais_fou , 17 Aug 2017 07:23
Keep saying it, you may believe it yourself. Fascism is a far boraoder movement than you claim. As the businessmen who supported Hitler knew.
wardadkiwi , 17 Aug 2017 07:23
Post WW2 one of the first if not the first show to confront American fascism was "The Twilight Zone ".Great man that he was Rod Serling confrontrd racism and fascism head on having an abiding hatred of both ,he was a WW2 veteran so he knew what nazis looked like in the flesh.
CharlesBradlaugh -> Midlyinterested1 , 17 Aug 2017 07:22
Violence is a reasonable, in fact the only answer to fascism, what do you want people to do, wait placidly for death camps?
palindrome , 17 Aug 2017 07:21

Observers have routinely considered fascism an ideology alien to American society

Why? A population armed to the teeth, a massive military ready to attack defenceless countries and a belief in "exceptionalism" scream fascist to me.

Summersalmostgone , 17 Aug 2017 07:20
Extremism is growing in every little ugly dark corner of our world. It's the real enemy. Left, right, religious or agnostic, even sports fans. We must be ever vigilant and not mistake extremist anger for passion. We must shine a light on those within us who are losing control and we must not excuse those who are lost just because they are on the same side.

Someone agreeing with you is great, but if the manner on which they agree is distasteful or vile, they aren't with you at all if you are a decent person, because the real fight is between the good moderates and the vile extremists. And this notion that there are no bad tactics only bad targets? Bull. Let's make the twenties the decade we get back on track.

antistink -> TimMiddleton , 17 Aug 2017 07:19
UKIP 'openly fascist ideology'? Dearie me.
Fascism: 'Totalitarian ideology associated with Benito Mussolini that elevates the nation over all other loyalties. It calls for the creation of a 'new man' purged of individualism and materialism. It celebrates masculinity, youth and the regenerative power of violence. It seeks to unify the nation under the leadership of a supreme leader in struggle against internal and external enemies.'
PJKatz , 17 Aug 2017 07:18
This column is perfect for The Graun: making a careful list of gaudy outbreaks of fascism while shorting the scaffolding on which it hangs. Instead of exposition on the heavy-handed corporate takeovers that lead to fascism there's a one-liner, "the crisis years of the 1920's and 1930's."

Fascism is not the outgrowth of some nebulous 'crisis' but a coherent economic and political program that must begin at the highest levels of society. So it is in the US today, a result of decades of growing inequality and resulting desperation. Chris Hedges' comment on sick societies: "And if we do not overthrow the neoliberal, corporate forces that have destroyed our democracy we will continue to vomit up more monstrosities as dangerous as Donald Trump." Ladies and gents, I give you Charlottesville.

Ernst Shackleton , 17 Aug 2017 07:16
Alot of people become more radicalized through youtube. If you watch a few 'alt-right' videos on you tube soon your feed will become full of them. People then get drawn in by the unbalanced media and a hate filled echo chamber. Videos heavily edited and narrated to suite a certain agenda.

The hate in some of the comments is atrocious.

I took a look at a video on youtube which suggested that someone should run over fractions of the left wing protestors with a tank. 100 likes. So soon after the terror attack. Youtube needs to do more to censor threats of violence.

Lastly I am sure infowars never used to be so 'far / alt-right... it seems like it has become far more extreme in the last few years.

ID6030211 , 17 Aug 2017 07:15
"Today, neo-fascism has many faces, with movements ranging from neo-Nazis to neo-Confederates to segments of the alt-right."

This is the point at which an interesting piece about the history of fascism in the United States seemed to let itself down.

Neo-Nazis and neo-Confederates tend to self-identify. They're the idiots with the dumb costumes and badges who can't seem to tell whether they're playing at being boy scouts or wizards. But where the piece lost an opportunity to provide additional insight was in the matter of the alt-right. 'Alt-right' has become something of a catch-all term that all kinds of people use for all kinds of reasons.

"[S]egments of the alt-right" is overly vague, and may seem to be something of an evasion. If there are segments of the alt-right that are fascists without falling into the two categories already mentioned (neo-nazis and neo-Confederates) then identify them - just as you identified the individuals and groups earlier in the piece.

Scholarship is great when it is specific and detailed. The alt-right part of the piece was too vague and therefore missed an opportunity to provide much-needed insight about a label that is in danger of becoming overused to the point of meaninglessness

[Aug 21, 2017] The impetus to grow and gain size and influence is essential to any political party, and sustaining this inertia overrides the thinking and living of the individual in favor of the coherence of the party itself as a mass;

Simone Weil definitely does not understands dialectics.
Notable quotes:
"... "Political parties are a marvellous mechanism which, on the national scale, ensures that not a single mind can attend to the effort of perceiving, in public affairs, what is good, what is just, what is true. As a result – except for a very small number of fortuitous coincidences – nothing is decided, nothing is executed, but measures that run contrary to the public interest, to justice and to truth." ..."
Aug 21, 2017 | www.moonofalabama.org

Charles R | Aug 20, 2017 5:44:06 PM | 7

I have used Simone Weil's " On the Abolition of All Political Parties " in a philosophy class. Her argument, as I'll try to summarize: the impetus to grow and gain size and influence is essential to any political party, and sustaining this inertia overrides the thinking and living of the individual in favor of the coherence of the party itself as a mass; thus, we must eliminate the political party.

My students found this "contradictory" or "stupid." People, they tell me, will naturally form groups, and because of this the group will operate just like she's claiming parties do, so she's not really saying how to get rid of this. I point out that she's very deliberate to talk about fluids versus crystals, between how things form associations that are fluid , and thus on some issues folks connect on on others they disconnect without the pressure to sustain these changes as a stable identity !she points to literary circles as groups that ebb and flow with members and associations that do not conform to the logic of the political party. These are distinct from associations that are crystal , where aggregation and homogeneity and stable arrangement are more important for the whole to remain itself. So, I take it my students, despite getting up in one class, walking around campus, and sitting down in another class, believe that there is little to no difference in one collection over another so long as the reason for the collection is what defines the collection . (How they take their intuition as expressed in my class and think through intersectionality as expressed in another class is something I was trying, through conversations with them, to work out, because I find it helps me when I find my own intuitions about all of this so very different from theirs.) But I think the implicit part of their reasoning was that all of this dealt with force, the force they feel inside as pressure to conform on the outside with others, who are at this point for them undeniably also undergoing these inward pressures to regulate their outward expression.

But then I point out that music, or sports, or lovemaking, or dance, or a lot of other ordinary things we do enjoyably with others, show us how to form and move through groups because we share a similar drive or interest in something outside of both of us, and they seem to get that idea. I find myself coming back to this website just to read the comments, because I find it a refreshing change of pace, a host of interesting exchanges, and a good opportunity to face the perennial challenge of sitting within conflict, finding reasonable the disagreeing voice, and owning what makes myself uncomfortable with strangers.

If enough people share the desire to talk about things from conflicting perspectives, the conversations continue, but as people move in and out, the conversation itself changes and evolves. To shut down the conversation is to lock it in place, to keep it rigid and total. To walk away from the conversation in good spirits, is to hope that it will continue, in some spirit, some form, resembling how it was going before. To walk away from the conversation in bad spirits, is to hope it will change into something that either once was !in which case it can't naturally and so only through artifice! or should be !in which case, being based on the limitations of our own perspective, won't be open for the wonderful possibility of something entirely new and inconceivable happening in a conversation.

I sometimes wish politics were just conversations. I found Hannah Arendt to be one of the few thinkers who set the terms in such a way that I was liberated. Leftist thinking taught me a lot about fashion, I didn't realize until later. Paleoconservative thinking taught me a lot about how much either gets suppressed or gathers dust in the libraries, and yet still smolders underneath the haunted foundations of our civilization. I come back to Zhuangzi over and over again. I come back to these rambling conversations under heaven, over earth, within the noosphere.

But eventually the conversation does end, and you have to hammer a nail to keep the walls up. Winter is coming. Wood needs cutting. Grains need grounding. Papers need grading.

PavewayIV | Aug 20, 2017 10:19:52 PM | 17

Charles R@7 - Well said, Charles R. I loved this quote from Weil's book in one of the reviews of On the Abolition of All Political Parties:

"Political parties are a marvellous mechanism which, on the national scale, ensures that not a single mind can attend to the effort of perceiving, in public affairs, what is good, what is just, what is true. As a result – except for a very small number of fortuitous coincidences – nothing is decided, nothing is executed, but measures that run contrary to the public interest, to justice and to truth."

Not sure I'm sold on eliminating them - this is another call to kill some of the existing victims in a futile effort to eliminate an infectious disease that permeates public affairs. It will irritate power- and control-seeking psychopaths temporarily. Political parties are just a convenient 'easy' button for them.

US society's problem is a child-like belief in some kind of magical innate integrity of organizations that feed us public affairs 'information' despite those organizations being obvious targets for exploitation. Part of psychopath's successful control and exploitation of the public is to obscure the fact that they are being controlled and exploited.

It's lonely here in tin-foil hat land, but I'm starting to see more visitors. I think our 'Taco Tuesday' promotion is starting to pay dividends!

psychohistorian | Aug 20, 2017 10:49:30 PM | 20

@ PavewayIV with his Taco Tuesday Tin Foil Hat promotion in response to Charles R@7 comment about political parties

I am reminded of the movie "Being There" with Peter Sellers as Chauncy Gardner. Chauncy Gardner has spent enough of his life inside so that when forced out on the street he carries a TV remote control and tries to change the channel when the situation starts to get dicey......Unfortunately, I see most Americans responding like Chauncy Gardner and keep banging on their TV remotes hoping the reality they see changes.

Does Waco Wednesday follow Taco Tuesday? or are you staying with a food meme?

[Aug 21, 2017] Debunking the Myth of Free Speech

Notable quotes:
"... Consider broadcast television, which was a vastly more important political force in the 1960s and 1970s than now. The three major networks, along with the two national news magazines, Time and Newsweek, shaped mass culture. And they all stayed tightly within a relatively narrow spectrum of civic views and social norms. ..."
"... Formal and informal censorship of television was extensive. By happenstance, I once met Dan Rowan of Rowan's and Martin's Laugh-In, which ran from 1968 to 1973. He described some of their regular fights with censors. I wish I recalled the details (this was over 30 years ago) but the impression I had was that Laugh-In was seen as being close enough to being transgressive that every show was reviewed before airing. Histories of censorship of television make clear that most of it was done by the broadcasters themselves, some of it presumably based on an understanding of what the FCC would tolerate, but also based on the advertisers' view of what the mass audience and mass values were. ..."
Aug 21, 2017 | www.nakedcapitalism.com
August 20, 2017 by Yves Smith Thanks to a huge and well-organized police presence, as well as strict limits imposed on the participants, follow-up to the "Unite the Right" white supremacist event in Charlottesville, the "Boston Free Speech" rally on Saturday demonstrated that the community wasn't about to cut extreme right wing agitators much slack :

"We probably had 40,000 people out here standing tall against hatred and bigotry in our city, and that's a good feeling," [Boston Police] Commissioner [William] Evans said.

The permit covered only 100 people. The city prohibited anyone carrying weapons, bats or other potential bludgeons, such as sticks to carry posters, glass containers and cans, sharp objects, and shields from coming to Boston Common. There were some small scale skirmishes and the police arrested 33, mainly for disorderly conduct.

The far right participants did not get to finish their agenda. The event broke up early as, per the Wall Street Journal , "a huge throng of counterprotesters approached Boston Common."

Some will contend, as the organizers of the event have, that their "free speech right" was violated. Does this claim stand up to scrutiny?

Contrary to popular mythology, the right to speak has always had limits in the US. In fact, we live in what amounts to a free speech Wild West compared to what existed in my childhood, and this isn't due just to the Citizens United decision.

Consider broadcast television, which was a vastly more important political force in the 1960s and 1970s than now. The three major networks, along with the two national news magazines, Time and Newsweek, shaped mass culture. And they all stayed tightly within a relatively narrow spectrum of civic views and social norms.

Broadcast spectrum has always been explicitly recognized to be a commons, yet it has never been a "free speech" zone. From Michael O'Malley, Associate Professor of History and Art History, George Mason University:

Like radio broadcasters, television broadcasters operated under the authority of the FCC, the Federal Communications Commission. The FCC was established by Franklin Roosevelt with the assumption that the airwaves, the broadcast "bandwidth," belonged to the people, much in the same way as, for example, federal forest land belongs to the people. Broadcasters applied for a license to use a section of that public property, a specific frequency.

Formal and informal censorship of television was extensive. By happenstance, I once met Dan Rowan of Rowan's and Martin's Laugh-In, which ran from 1968 to 1973. He described some of their regular fights with censors. I wish I recalled the details (this was over 30 years ago) but the impression I had was that Laugh-In was seen as being close enough to being transgressive that every show was reviewed before airing. Histories of censorship of television make clear that most of it was done by the broadcasters themselves, some of it presumably based on an understanding of what the FCC would tolerate, but also based on the advertisers' view of what the mass audience and mass values were.

But what about "free speech" in the context of the Boston right-wing rally? Let us turn over the mike to Neil W, who weighed in via e-mail:

Charlottesville was not an exercise in free speech. There's no such thing as free speech. Seriously. It's a myth. An absolute tolerance for speech is neither defined in our Constitution nor our jurisprudence. There's protected speech. And there's speech that is not protected. Look at the list of types of speech defined in law as not being protected.

Do you see the commonality in there? It's harm . Speech that is not protected by law ultimately creates or perpetuates harm . Hate speech creates harm . Stanley Fish, discussing a Jeremy Waldron thesis:

"The very point of hate speech, [Waldron] says, "is to negate the implicit assurance that a society offers to the members of vulnerable groups ! that they are accepted as a matter of course, along with everyone else." Purveyors of hate "aim to undermine this assurance, call it in question, and taint it with visible expressions of hatred, exclusion and contempt." What the Vice video, and most of the other Charlottesville coverage, shows is an exercise in hate speech.

Hate speech creates harm that is arguably more egregious than any related to the types of speech in the above list. And yet, our political mythology demands that hate speech be tolerated regardless of the obvious and well documented harm it causes because there is some mysterious greater harm awaiting us should we act to extend to all of our citizens the implicit assurance incorporated into our Constitution and protections from harm found in our jurisprudence. Other countries have hate speech laws. The United States is long past due.

We don't know what might have been said at the Boston event, particularly since the roster of speakers was changing up to right before the event. But we have clues.

Even though one of the six organizers, John Medlar, said he was a libertarian and denounced hate groups, at a minimum, scheduling this event as a follow-up to Charlottesville wasn't consistent with that branding. Even the people planning protests on a clearly unrelated issue, the firing of Google's James Damore, postponed demonstrations that were also originally set for this weekend to distance them from Charlottesville.

And it looks like the "Boston Free Speech" leaders, whether intentionally or not, were trying to have it both ways. From Boston.com last week :

John Medlar, who says he is an organizer for Boston Free Speech, the group behind the rally, told Boston.com that his group is not associated with the white supremacists who marched with tiki torches in Charlottesville last weekend. But the group has said in comments on a Facebook post that there would be "overlap" in attendance between the two rallies .

Boston Free Speech posted an updated list Friday of the rally's speakers, which includes Joe Biggs, who worked until recently for Infowars, the website founded by conspiracy theorist Alex Jones; and Kyle Chapman, known on the internet as "Based Stickman" and founder of the Fraternal Order of Alt-Knights, which is described by the Southern Poverty Law Center as a "new Alt-Right group of street fighters."

Some speakers initially billed for the rally, such as Gavin McInnes, a former Vice Media co-founder and founder of the Proud Boys, a far-right group, dropped out following a Monday press conference by Boston officials condemning the event.

As Micheal Olenick pointed out, both France and Germany have laws against hate speech, yet they are not stymied robust political debate, nor the rise of far-right candidates like Marine Le Pen.

Although US exceptionalism means we are loath to look overseas and crib from successful policies implemented elsewhere, the time is overdue for us to catch up here. City officials implemented an anti-hate-speech standard in Boston in a clumsy manner. We might as well do it right.

[Aug 20, 2017] Conservatives react with fury to Bannon's departure. The chief strategist had been involved in a nasty tug-of-war with what his allies view as the "globalist" wing of the White House, represented by Trump's son-in-law Jared Kushner, National Economic Council Director Gary Cohn and national security adviser H.R. McMaster by Jonathan Easley

Globalists here means neoliberals and often neocons.
That means that Trump administration has strong neocon/neolib "fifth column" -- the "enemy within" that tries to mold him into Republican version of Obama -=- professional "bait and switch" artists with his fake slogan "Change we can believe in".
Obama simply used anti-racism as a tool to further his own image. His actions while in office proved beyond a doubt that he certainly never gave a damn about racism. All he ever did was pay lip service to anti-racism ideals. He was about as trustworthy as a snake.
Notable quotes:
"... The chief strategist had been involved in a nasty tug-of-war with what his allies view as the "globalist" wing of the White House, represented by Trump's son-in-law Jared Kushner, National Economic Council Director Gary Cohn and national security adviser H.R. McMaster. ..."
"... On Friday, conservatives lashed out at what they viewed as Trump selling out his base and surrendering to those "liberal" forces. ..."
"... "Steve's allies in the populist nationalist movement are ready to ride to the gates of hell with him against the West Wing Democrats and globalists like [national security aide] Dina Powell, Jared Kushner, Ivanka Trump, Gary Cohn and H.R. McMaster," said one Bannon ally. ..."
Aug 20, 2017 | www.msn.com

Originally from The Hill

A number of conservatives expressed fury and dismay on Friday after news broke that President Trump has parted ways with his chief strategist, Stephen Bannon.

Bannon is a hero on the right and credited with harnessing Trump's message of economic populism during the campaign.

The chief strategist had been involved in a nasty tug-of-war with what his allies view as the "globalist" wing of the White House, represented by Trump's son-in-law Jared Kushner, National Economic Council Director Gary Cohn and national security adviser H.R. McMaster.

On Friday, conservatives lashed out at what they viewed as Trump selling out his base and surrendering to those "liberal" forces.

"I'm very upset," said Tea Part activist Debbie Dooley. "The deep state globalists won. They forced out Steve Bannon. I had a 'CNN is fake news protest' scheduled for tomorrow at their headquarters in Atlanta that I'm canceling because I'm so disheartened. It's a betrayal of his base. I'll continue to support Trump and his policies but I'll no longer be on the front lines defending him."

There are rumors that Bannon could be headed back to Breitbart News, where as chairman he is credited with turning the outlet into a right-wing juggernaut.

Breitbart has been explicitly pro-Trump since the GOP presidential primaries and has vigorously defended the president through his tumultuous first months in office. Regional editors at the internet publication made clear that their loyalties lie with Bannon over Trump. There are some fears among Trump allies that Bannon could wreak havoc on the administration from outside of the White House.

For months, Breitbart has been running attacks against Kushner, Cohn and McMaster in an effort to boost Bannon's standing in the West Wing. The sense of urgency to protect Bannon grew after McMaster ousted several of Bannon's allies from the national security council.

Now, with Bannon gone, his allies are cutting loose.

"Steve's allies in the populist nationalist movement are ready to ride to the gates of hell with him against the West Wing Democrats and globalists like [national security aide] Dina Powell, Jared Kushner, Ivanka Trump, Gary Cohn and H.R. McMaster," said one Bannon ally.

"They should all be very worried that their efforts to undermine the president will be exposed. If they think what's happened with Steve is rough, wait until they see what he does outside the White House," the ally said.

Last week, Rep. Mark Meadows (R-N.C.), chairman of the conservative House Freedom Caucus, spoke to Trump, urging him not to fire Bannon, GOP sources said.

A senior White House official told The Hill that the president had been inundated in recent days from "high-level Republican donors and activists" pleading with the president to keep Bannon on.

With both Bannon and former chief of staff Reince Priebus out, "a lot of GOP lawmakers are confused and nervous about who they are supposed to talk to in the administration," said one GOP source. "They both did the bulk of Hill outreach."

[Aug 20, 2017] Trump Loses Anti-War Aide In Bannon The Daily Caller

Aug 20, 2017 | dailycaller.com

Bannon supported Blackwater founder Erik Prince's plan to use military contractors in the war in Afghanistan and was against National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster's plan to deploy tens of thousands of more troops to the Afghan conflict, according to a source with knowledge of the deliberations.

While saying he would "bomb the s**t" out of ISIS, Trump ran on a largely non-interventionist campaign. He attacked President Bush for invading Iraq and cautioned against toppling the Assad regime in Syria.

His White House, however, is not populated with like-minded thinkers. Even the most Trump-like senior adviser left, Stephen Miller, was a strong supporter of the Iraq War and primarily focuses on domestic policy issues.

Trump does have the habit of speaking to outside advisers on the phone and calls with Bannon and Roger Stone might be the only times Trump hears war-weary voices.

John C Durham 2 days ago
Trump's power grows. And, his people don't speak first. (Trump speaks what The People are thinking. Offend Trump and you have offended almost everybody.)

Bye, by)e Democrats. You can't win WITHOUT a Revolution...and not very many of the real People are really interested in efforts to get one going.

Remember the CENTER of it all (ISIS, RIOTS) is London/Wall Street.
Everything since last Summer, has been coming out of MI5/6 to our FBI, CIA, NSA Business Intelligence Empire.

The People are not going to go against Lincoln and they aren't
going to stand for anyone to take down the "States Rights" statues.

People are for a Strong Central Government and for a Strong State Government. It isn't "either/or". It's BOTH. For Mob Rule...uh, not so much... Trump's power is growing steadily.

The People are sometimes for Left, sometimes for Right. It isn't "either/or". It's BOTH.

If you don't know this, you don't know anything about Americans.
These killings and riots are highly organized by both assets and AGENTS of the Anti forces of Deep State, Deep Business. None of this is "from" WE, The People.

Guy Smith1 a day ago
"Bannon is back at Breitbart--awesome!," Lee Stranahan, 8/18/17
https://www.periscope.tv/w/...

Hillary Clintub • 2 days ago

Bannon is now in a better position to expose the deep state. McMaster is probably soiling his diapers.

Jesse4 > Hillary Clintub • 2 days ago

The deep state just kicked Bannon's incredibly huge butt.

lorsarah > Jesse4 • 2 days ago

The Deep State oligarchs and hacks may have won a small battle but their days are numbered. The movement that Bannon is part of is growing.

oknow • 2 days ago

This whole intervention crap is for the birds and a waste of money as the years have shown.

If the Germans and Japanese were Islamic or international religious armies it would have never ended. Maybe it is time that the great oil powers man up and fight.

Trump not backing down from the NK is what strength is. Not this crap of 15 years in foreign nations.

T100C1970 > oknow • 2 days ago

This bravo sierra warfare did not start with Muzzies. It started with Commies. The Korean war was the first war the US did not win. We got a tie with the pathetic Norks. Then in the era in which I served as an Army Officer we managed to LOSE to the Cong + NVA.. The wars in Iraq and Afghanistan are so far more like "ties" ... assuming you can call it a tie to spend billions and lose thousands of troops to preserve a sort of status quo.

lorsarah > oknow • 2 days ago

"Not backing down from North Korea" IS foreign intervention, as everyone with a brain knows that NK, which can't even keep its lights on, is not a threat.

11B30L • 2 days ago

President Trump is allowing his "little tiny ego" to get in the way of White House staffing decisions, according to conservative commentator Ann Coulter.

Burrito Jackson • 2 days ago

Trump just sent his generals proposal back to the drawing board to keep us in Afghanistan. Trump hasn't changed. Tired of hearing everyone controls Trump like he is a puppet.

lorsarah > Burrito Jackson • 2 days ago

Why are we there AT ALL? To protect our freedom? Of course not. Self-defense? Of course not. It's lunacy, just as Vietnam was. But the military-industrial complex makes big money on lunacy such as Afghanistan.

wars r u.s. • a day ago

Trump is a dove? He bombed Syria with no evidence that Assad did the chemical attack. He dropped the MOAB on Afghanistan and his only real problem with that war is that we're not winning. We continue to back the Saudi's in their onslaught of Yemen. Trump wants to decertify Iran's compliance to the nuke deal even though Iran is in compliance which could lead to the war the neocons and liberal hawks(Israeli firsters) have been salivating over for decades. He threatens NK with "fire ad fury" and even recently threatened Venezuela...

[Aug 20, 2017] Laugh all you want, but you really are ignoring some harsh facts about the current US economy, what it's based on, and what conflict with North Korea will entail should the US be foolish enough to continue along that track

Notable quotes:
"... If the US attacks North Korea, that's the end of the US-centric Pacific Commonwealth. Japan, Singapore, Indonesia, and the Philippines will all strongly realign following the inevitable destruction of South Korea--most towards a more China-friendly relationship--and the rest of South East Asia will follow suit. Taiwan will become increasingly isolated, and that will put huge pressure on it to cut off its client status with the US and move towards normalization of relations with China. ..."
"... Besides - the media slowly, slowly starts to wake up. CNN: North Korea gives US a clear choice: Restraint or missile launches ..."
"... Bottom line: It is premature to suggest that the US is winning this game. ..."
Aug 20, 2017 | turcopolier.typepad.com

Pacifica Advocate -> BillWade... Reply , 17 August 2017 at 10:04 AM

Very, very, very far, in fact.

If the US attacks North Korea, that's the end of the US-centric Pacific Commonwealth. Japan, Singapore, Indonesia, and the Philippines will all strongly realign following the inevitable destruction of South Korea--most towards a more China-friendly relationship--and the rest of South East Asia will follow suit. Taiwan will become increasingly isolated, and that will put huge pressure on it to cut off its client status with the US and move towards normalization of relations with China.

In the US, Wal Mart, Target, and all the other big superstores of that ilk (Hobby Lobby...) will just waft away into vapor as their suppliers gradually disappear (and certainly, they'll take a huge economic hit during the quarter or half-year that the conflict ensues).

Laugh all you want, but you really are ignoring some harsh facts about the current US economy, what it's based on, and what conflict with North Korea will entail should the US be foolish enough to continue along that track.

b said in reply to jonst... , 17 August 2017 at 04:28 AM
Since when is "the world's" notice relevant in political issues?

Besides - the media slowly, slowly starts to wake up. CNN: North Korea gives US a clear choice: Restraint or missile launches
http://edition.cnn.com/2017/08/16/opinions/north-korea-us-guam-choice-adam-mount/index.html

Richardstevenhack said in reply to turcopolier ... , 16 August 2017 at 10:11 PM
Yes, I'm aware. But that doesn't change the likelihood that
  1. Kim never intended to launch those missiles, but merely make the threat in another attempt to pressure the US to negotiate (in which case, of course, he failed - big surprise that) and
  2. Even if he did actually intend to launch such a missile test, his generals likely suggested it would be TOO provocative.

In any event, my main point is that nothing has changed.

Alexander Mercouris did a piece today at The Duran suggesting that both sides have backed off. I submitted a comment disagreeing.

NK will likely continue to launch missiles until the US agrees to negotiate. And Trump is unlikely to agree to negotiate until he's painted himself into a corner where he will have to launch SOME sort of military action against NK - which is likely to trigger full-scale war.

Bottom line: It is premature to suggest that the US is winning this game.

[Aug 20, 2017] McMaster solidifies power at NSC ! and supports Iran deal, sees Israel as occupier by Philip Weiss

Aug 05, 2017 | mondoweiss.net

Last night President Trump issued a statement affirming his support for National Security adviser H.R. McMaster in the face of a storm of criticism from rightwing outlets. The statement is a sign that Trump and his new chief of staff are taking the realist side of the debate inside his administration over foreign policy.

So while Trump claims to be doing everything he can to trash the Iran deal, the good news is that his foreign policy team is for it. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson clearly advocated for the deal at a press briefing earlier this week, while suggesting that he could differ with the president on how effective it's been.

I think there are a lot of alternative means with which we use the agreement to advance our policies and the relationship with Iran.

Tillerson is one of the "adults" who are thought to be able to rein in Trump's worst tendencies on Iran, as Paul Pillar wrote :

Reportedly the adults, including Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis, and National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster, last month urged a resistant Trump to recognize reality and certify that Iran was complying with the JCPOA [Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action].

Further comfort comes from the fact that three days ago, General McMaster fired Ezra Cohen-Watnick , an enigmatic thirtyish intelligence aide who was vehemently opposed to the Iran deal, leading to calls to get rid of McMaster. Like Tillerson, McMaster is plainly a realist. And he is thought to have job security because his predecessor, General Mike Flynn, lasted barely three weeks and went out with a splash. The Atlantic says McMaster is cleaning house at the NSC; two weeks ago he got rid of an ideologue who spread anti-Muslim conspiracies.

Supporters of Israel are upset by the personnel changes. The Israeli-American hothead Caroline Glick writes at her Facebook page that McMaster is "deeply hostile" to Israel as an occupying power.

The Israel angle on McMaster's purge of Trump loyalists from the National Security Council is that all of these people are pro-Israel and oppose the Iran nuclear deal, positions that Trump holds.

McMaster in contrast is deeply hostile to Israel and to Trump. According to senior officials aware of his behavior, he constantly refers to Israel as the occupying power and insists falsely and constantly that a country named Palestine existed where Israel is located until 1948 when it was destroyed by the Jews.

McMaster "has chosen to eliminate the pro-Israel voices at the National Security Council," according to Jordan Schachtel at the Conservative Review, who cited interviews with White House officials who are trying to undermine the general:

McMaster not only shuns Israel, he is also historically challenged on Arab-Israeli affairs, according to the sources.

"McMaster constantly refers to the existence of a Palestinian state before 1947," a senior West Wing official tells CR (there was never an independent Palestinian state), adding that McMaster describes Israel as an "illegitimate," "occupying power."

The NSC chief expressed great reluctance to work with Israel on counterterror efforts, as he shut down a joint U.S.-Israel project to counter the terrorist group Hezbollah's efforts to expand Iran's worldwide influence.

One of the main indictments of McMaster by neoconservatives (right-wing Israel supporters who favor regime change) is that he restrained the president on his tour of occupied territories in May ( as Allison Deger reported at the time ). In this White House briefing, McMaster refused to say that the western wall in occupied East Jerusalem is part of Israel.

[Aug 20, 2017] Mr. Bannon's disdain for General McMaster also accelerated his demise

Notable quotes:
"... The war veteran has never quite clicked with the president, but other West Wing staff members recoiled at a series of smears against General McMaster by internet allies of Mr. Bannon. ..."
Aug 20, 2017 | www.msn.com

Mr. Bannon's disdain for General McMaster also accelerated his demise. The war veteran has never quite clicked with the president, but other West Wing staff members recoiled at a series of smears against General McMaster by internet allies of Mr. Bannon.

The strategist denied involvement, but he also did not speak out against them.

By the time Charlottesville erupted, Mr. Kushner and Ms. Trump had a powerful ally in Mr. Kelly, who shared their belief that Mr. Trump's first statement blaming "many sides" for the deadly violence needed to be amended.

Mr. Bannon vigorously objected. He told Mr. Kelly that if Mr. Trump delivered a second, more contrite statement it would do him no good, with either the public or the Washington press corps, which he denigrated as a "Pretorian guard" protecting the Democrats' consensus that Mr. Trump is a race-baiting demagogue. Mr. Trump could grovel, beg for forgiveness, even get down on his knees; it would never work, Mr. Bannon maintained.

"They're going to say two things: It's too late and it's not enough," Mr. Bannon told Mr. Kelly.

[Aug 20, 2017] Breitbart Goes After Ivanka And McMaster

Aug 20, 2017 | dailycaller.com

The first earlier in the day was " Report: Powerful GOP Donor Sheldon Adelson Supports Campaign to Oust McMaster ." This article detailed how major Republican donor Sheldon Adelson reportedly is supporting a campaign against McMaster that claims the national security adviser is anti-Israel.

Later in the day, the lead story on the site was " McMaster Of Disguise: Nat'l Security Adviser Endorsed Book That Advocates Quran-Kissing Apology Ceremonies ." This piece from frequent McMaster critic Aaron Klein said that McMaster endorsed a book that "calls on the U.S. military to respond to any 'desecrations' of the Quran by service members with an apology ceremony, and advocates kissing a new copy of the Quran before presenting the Islamic text to the local Muslim public."

The article went on to say that McMaster has "troubling views" on Islamic terrorism.

The site also published two articles Sunday critical of Ivanka. One of them is an aggregate of a Daily Mail report that claimed Ivanka helped push Bannon out of the White House. Shortly after the story was published, the article received an update that said a White House senior aide stated the Daily Mail report is "totally false."

Breitbart also wrote a piece that highlighted six times Ivanka and her husband Jared Kushner's displeasure with President Trump had been leaked to the media.

Bannon said in interviews after his departure from the White House that he will use Breitbart to fight for the president's agenda.

"In many ways, I think I can be more effective fighting from the outside for the agenda President Trump ran on," Bannon told The New York Times . "And anyone who stands in our way, we will go to war with."

[Aug 20, 2017] Breitbart goes after McMaster

Aug 20, 2017 | thehill.com

Breitbart News, the media outlet helmed by President Trump's former chief strategist Stephen Bannon, published an article on Sunday casting national security adviser H.R. McMaster as soft on Islamist extremism and terrorism.

The former chief strategist's exit from the White House on Friday immediately raised questions about the future of Bannon's relationship with Trump, as well as how Breitbart would cover the administration with Bannon at the helm again.

In an interview last week on NBC's "Meet the Press," McMaster repeatedly dodged questions about whether he could work with Bannon, saying simply that he is "ready to work with anybody who will help advance the president's agenda and advance the security, prosperity of the American people."

"I get to work together with a broad range of talented people, and it is a privilege every day to enable the national security team," McMaster told the show's host Chuck Todd.

[Aug 20, 2017] The Bannon - McMaster war can be very easily explained

Aug 20, 2017 | www.moonofalabama.org

somebody | Aug 20, 2017 5:49:52 AM | 98

The Bannon - McMaster war can be very easily explained

McMaster made sure the US remains in the Iran deal

This is not what Sheldon Adelson or the Mercers paid for. This is not what right wing Israelis want.

Stability is not what the Mercers thrive on .

Hedge fund insiders say that quant funds, whose trading profits typically depend on volatility, have been hurt by what has been a surprisingly steady market environment in the second quarter, most notably in June, when the CBOE Volatility Index, or VIX � which reflects investors� views of expected stock market volatility � gained between 10 percent and 12 percent, half of its 52-week highs. The Republicans� failure to pass a health care bill, a steady drumbeat of news about the Russia-Trump investigation, and nuclear missile tests of North Korea did little to jar investor confidence in the stock market. The S&P 500 gained 0.6 percent during the month, putting it up 9.3 percent this year

Grieved | Aug 19, 2017 10:06:59 PM | 86

@58 karlof1

Thanks for the Escobar link. The story makes great sense. It's good to know about Mercer and to see that Trump and Bannon are tight. Oddly, it did seem that with all the jackals circling around Trump's neck, in this one case, Bannon is more use outside the tent pissing in than inside pissing out. And Breitbart has now received a massive profile lift, it'll become a national player in the narrative, one would expect.

By the way, I was pondering lately this whole aspect of a grass roots movement. Funny you should bring it up. The only question here about the US is, will the people actually get a voice in this society? If the electoral system keeps bringing liars and betraying promises, then it's time to Occupy the Ballot and have new movements. This is happening I think, with Trump actually being one of the precursor litmus tests.

~~

As for the generals, what does a ruler need except the people and the army? Trump has them both. It makes him harder to take down with all those generals around. Of course, Caesar will have to accord with his praetorian guard or the guard will get a new Caesar. But the US is a banana republic now, this is how it's done - and I'm serious about this, these are real dynamics I think.

Surely the generals will end up being more conservative in action than in rhetoric? And if they get a little giddy and actually send their soldiers out into the real world, they'll quickly receive more of those globally public humiliations that are lowering the empire to the ground so effectively. What can go wrong, that couldn't always go wrong anyway, regardless of who's in charge, or thinks they're in charge?

V. Arnold | Aug 19, 2017 8:50:03 PM | 80
somebody | Aug 19, 2017 10:01:52 AM | 24

Trump would not have been elected without Robert Mercer. Robert Mercer is the billionaire behind Cambridge Analytica, Breitbart and Steve Bannon.

Who financed Adolf Hitler?

Bingo! Finally, some one got the Mercers; both the father and the daughter.
http://therealnews.com/t2/story:19811:The-Real-Story-of-How-Bannon-and-Trump-Got-to-The-White-House

smuks | Aug 20, 2017 8:45:55 AM | 101
@psychohistorian 85

We express things differently, but think very much alike.

The water and sewage system is a good example, but you could take any basic utility/ basic human need: Everyone needs it, but there's no need for 'growth' and little if any room for efficiency gains. So the only ways to profit as a private investor are to overcharge users or to pay miserable wages and let the infrastructure rot.

Private enterprise and competition can work miracles when an economic sector is rapidly developing, expanding and advancing technologically. Governments should encourage this, so I don't think they're (purely) socialistic. But once the sector is 'grown-up' and enters a more or less 'steady state', there's neither room nor justification for profits. It becomes more important to provide high-quality services to everyone(!) while using as little natural resources as possible - and for this, a democratic form of organization is much more fitting than a private profit-driven one (which strives to maximize throughput).

I'm cautiously optimistic. My impression is that more and more people realize that in our time, 'democracy', 'equal rights' and 'sustainability' more important than 'profits' and 'growth'...don't you think?

nb...'posit' - I just learned a new word, thanks!

@somebody 98

Thanks for pointing out the uncertainty and 'volatility'/ VIX bit. I agree it's what speculative investors like hedge funds need and thrive on - so it's what they try to promote by all means (cf. certain websites).
Especially now that we are saying goodbye to the 'growth' phase of the economy and entering a 'steady state' (s.ab.), financial market volatility is increasingly the only thing to reap (relevant) profits from. It's a fight between the pro-stability and the 'profit at all cost' factions - luckily, the former is winning.

[Aug 20, 2017] The USA are about to face the worst crisis of their history and how Putin's example might inspire Trump

Notable quotes:
"... Putin outsmarted you at every step of the way ..."
Oct 22, 2016 | thesaker.is

Watching the last Presidential debate was a rather depressing experience. I thought that Trump did pretty well, but that really is not the point here. The point is this: no matter who wins, an acute crisis is inevitable.

Option one : Hillary wins. That's Obama on steroids, only worse. Remember that Obama himself was Dubya, only worse. Of course, Dubya was just Clinton, only worse. Now the circle is closed. Back to Clinton. Except this time around, we have a women who is deeply insecure, who failed at every single thing that she every tried to do, and who now has a 3 decades long record of disasters and failures. Even when she had no authority to start a war, she started one (told Bill to bomb the Serbs). Now she has that authority. And now she had to stand there, in front of millions of people, and hear Trump tell her " Putin outsmarted you at every step of the way " (did you see her frozen face when he said that?). Trump is right, Putin did outsmart her and Obama at every step. The problem is that now, after having a President with an inferiority complex towards Putin (Obama) we will have a President with the very same inferiority complex and a morbid determination to impose a no-fly zone over Russian forces in Syria. Looking at Hillary, with her ugly short hair and ridiculous pants, I thought to myself "this is a woman who is trying hard to prove that she is every bit as tough and any man" – except of course that she ain't. Her record also shows her as being weak, cowardly and with a sense of total impunity. And now, that evil messianic lunatic with a deep-seated inferiority complex is going to become Commander in Chief?! God help us all!

Option two : Trump wins. Problem: he will be completely alone. The Neocons have a total, repeat total , control of the Congress, the media, banking and finance, and the courts. From Clinton to Clinton they have deeply infiltrated the Pentagon, Foggy Bottom, and the three letter agencies. The Fed is their stronghold. How in the world will Trump deal with these rabid " crazies in the basement "? Consider the vicious hate campaign which all these "personalities" (from actors, to politicians to reporters) have unleashed against Trump – they have burned their bridges, they know that they will lose it all if Trump wins (and, if he proves to be an easy pushover his election will make no difference anyway). The Neocons have nothing to lose and they will fight to the very last one. What could Trump possibly do to get anything done if he is surrounded by Neocons and their agents of influence? Bring in an entirely different team? How is he going to vet them? His first choice was to take Pence as a VP – a disaster (he is already sabotaging Trump on Syria and the elections outcome). I *dread* the hear whom Trump will appoint as a White House Chief of Staff as I am afraid that just to appease the Neocons he will appoint some new version of the infamous Rahm Emanuel And should Trump prove that he has both principles and courage, the Neocons can always "Dallas" him and replace him with Pence. Et voilà !

I see only one way out:

The (imperfect) Putin model

When Putin came to power he inherited a Kremlin every bit as corrupt and traitor-infested as the White House nowadays. As for Russia, she was in pretty much the same sorry shape as the Independent Nazi-run Ukraine. Russia was also run by bankers and AngloZionist puppets and most Russians led miserable lives. The big difference is that, unlike what is happening with Trump, the Russian version of the US Neocons never saw the danger coming from Putin. He was selected by the ruling elites as the representative of the security services to serve along a representative of the big corporate money, Medvedev. This was a compromise solution between the only two parts of the Russian society which were still functioning, the security services and oil/gas money. Putin looked like a petty bureaucrat in an ill fitting suit, a shy and somewhat awkward little guy who would present no threat to the powerful oligarchs of the semibankirshchina (the Seven Bankers) running Russia. Except that he turned out to be one of the most formidable rulers in Russia history. Here is what Putin did as soon as he came to power:

First, he re-established the credibility of the Kremlin with the armed forces and security services by rapidly and effectively crushing the Wahabi insurgency in Chechnia. This established his personal credibility with the people he would have to rely on to deal with the oligarchs.

Second, he used the fact that everybody, every single businessman and corporation in Russia, did more or less break the law during the 1990s, if only because there really was no law. Instead of cracking down on the likes of Berezovski or Khodorkovski for their political activities, he crushed them with (absolutely true) charges of corruption. Crucially, he did that very publicly, sending a clear message to the other arch-enemy: the media.

Third, contrary to the hallucinations of the western human rights agencies and Russian liberals, Putin never directly suppressed any dissent, or cracked down on the media or, even less so, ordered the murder of anybody. He did something much smarter. Remember that modern journalists are first and foremost presstitutes, right? By mercilessly cracking down on the oligarchs Putin deprived the presstitutes of their source of income and political support. Some emigrated to the Ukraine, others simply resigned, and a few were left like on a reservation or a zoo on a few very clearly identifiable media outlets such as Dozhd TV, Ekho Moskvy Radio or the newspaper Kommersant. Those who emigrated became irrelevant, as for those who stayed in the "liberal zoo" – they were harmless has they had no credibility left. Crucially, everybody else "got the message". After that, all it took is the appointment a few real patriots (such as Dmitri Kiselev, Margarita Simonian and others) in key positions and everybody quickly understood that the winds of fortune had now turned.

Fourth, once the main media outlets were returned back to sanity it did not take too long for the "liberal" (in the Russian sense, meaning pro-USA) parties to enter into a death-spiral from which they have never recovered. That, in turn, resulted in the ejection of all "liberals" form the Duma which now has only 4 parties, all of them more or less "patriotic".

That's the part that worked.

So far, Putin failed to eject the 5th columnists, whom I call the "Atlantic Integrationists" (for details, including their names, see here ) from the government itself.. Even the notorious Alexei Kudrin was not fired by Putin, but by Medvedev. The security services succeeded in finally getting rid of Anatolii Serdyukov but they did not have power needed to put him in jail. I still think that a purge will happen while Alexander Mercouris disagrees . Whatever may be the case, what is certain is that Putin has not tackled the 5th columnists in the banking/finance sector and that the latter have being very careful not to give him a pretext to take action against them.

Russia and the USA are very different countries, and no recipe can be simply copied from one to another. Still, there are valuable lessons from the "Putin model" for Trump, not the least of which that his most formidable enemies probably are sitting in the Fed. One Russian analyst – Rostislav Ishchenko – has suggested that Trump could somehow force the Fed to increase interest rates, which would result in a bankruptcy domino effect for US banks which might be the only way to finally crush the Fed and re-take control of US banking. Maybe. I honestly am not qualified to have an opinion about that.

What is sure is that for the time being the USA will continue to look like that:

A homeless man, possibly a veteran, has built a "corridor of flags" to get people to give him money. Florida, October 2016.

Rich on cheapo patriotism and otherwise poor.

Hillary thinks that this is a stunning success. Trump thinks that this is a disgrace. I submit that the choice between these two is really very simple.

To those who are saying that there cannot be a schism in the AngloZionist elites, I will reply that the example of the conspiracy to prevent Dominique Strauss-Kahn from becoming the next French President shows that, just like hyenas, AngloZionist leaders do sometimes turn on each other. That happens in all regimes, regardless of their political ideology (think SS against SA in Nazi Germany or Trotskists against Stalinists in Boshevik USSR).

Of brooms and body parts

Leon Trotsky used to say the Soviet Russia needed to be cleansed from anarchists and noblemen with an "iron broom". He even wrote an article in the Pravda entitled "We need an iron broom". Another genocidal manic, Felix Derzhinskii, founder of the notorious ChK secret police, used to say that a secret police officer must have a "burning heart, a cool head and clean hands". One would seek weakness, or even compassion, in vain from folks like these. These are ideology-driven "true believers", sociopaths with no sense of empathy, profoundly evil people with a genocidal hatred of anybody standing in their way.

Hillary Clinton and her gang of Neocons are the spiritual (and sometimes even physical) successors of the Soviet Bolsheviks and they, just like their Bolshevik forefathers, will not hesitate for a second to crush their enemies. Donald Trump – assuming he is for real and actually means what he says – has to understand that and do what Putin did: strike first and strike hard. Stalin, by the way, also did exactly that, and for a while the Trotskyists were crushed, but in the years following Stalin's death they gradually bounced back only to seize power again in 1991 (not Trotskyists in a literal sense of the word, but russophobic Jews who had nothing but contempt for the Russian people). I think that the jury is still out on whether Putin will succeed in finally removing the 5th columnist from power. What is sure is that Russia is at least semi-free from the control of these people and that the US is their last bastion right now. Their maniacal hatred of Trump can in part be explained by the sense of danger these folks feel, being threatened for the first time in what they see as their homeland (I don't mean that in a patriotic sense – but rather like a parasite care for "his" host). And maybe they have some good reason to fear. I sure hope that they do.

I am rather encouraged by the way Trump handled the latest attempt to make him cower in fear. Yesterday Trump dared to declare that since the election might be rigged or stolen he does not pledge to recognize their outcome. And even though every semi-literate person knows that elections in the USA have been rigged and stolen in the past, including Presidential ones, by saying that Trump committed a major case of crimethink . The Ziomedia pounced on him with self-righteous outrage and put immense pressure on him to retract his statement (which, by the way, contradicted Pence's stance). Instead of rolling over and recanting his "crime", Trump replied with this:

http://www.liveleak.com/ll_embed?f=7fb0ec4a8ebe

Beautiful no? Let's hope he continues to show the same courage.

Trump is doing now what Jean-Marie Le Pen did in France: he is showing the Neocons that be that he dares to openly defy them, that he refuses to play by their rules, that their outrage has no effect on his and that they don't get to censor or, even less so, silence him. That is also what he did when, yet again, he refused to accuse the Russians of cyber-attacks and, instead, repeated that it would be a good thing for Russia and the USA to be friends. Again, I am not sure that how long he will be able to hold that line, but for the time being there is no denying that he is openly defying the AngloZionist deep state and Empire.

Conclusion

The United States are about to enter what might possibly be the deepest and most dangerous crisis of their history. If Trump is elected, he will have to immediately launch a well-planned attack against his opponents without giving them any pretext to accuse him of politically motivated repressions. In Russia, Putin could count on the support of the military and the security services. I don't know whom Trump can count on, but I am fairly confident that there are still true patriots in the US armed forces. If Trump gets the right person to head the FBI, he might also use that agency to clean house and deliver a steady streams of indictments for corruption, conspiracy to [fill the blank], abuse of authority, obstruction of justice and dereliction of duty, etc. Since such crimes are widespread in the current circles of power, they are also easy to prove and cracking down on corruption would get Trump a standing ovation from the American people. Next, just as Putin in Russia, Trump will have to deal with the media. How exactly, I don't know. But he will have to face this beast and defeat it. At every step in this process he will have to get the proactive support of the people, just like Putin does. Can he do it?

I don't know. Honestly, I doubt it. First, I still don't trust him. But, more relevantly, I would argue that to overthrow the deep state and restore true people power is even harder in the USA than it was in Russia. I have always believed that the AngloZionist Empire will have to be brought down from the outside, most probably by a combination of military and economic defeats. I still believe that. However, I might be wrong – in fact, I hope that I am – and maybe Trump will be the guy to bring down the Empire in order to save the United States. If there is such a possibility, however slim, I think that we have to believe in it and act on it as all the alternatives are far worse.

The Saker

[Aug 20, 2017] The Permanent Crisis

Notable quotes:
"... The Democratic Party of Barack Obama and Bill and Hillary Clinton is satisfied with the status quo, and uses identity politics as a veneer for economic policies that benefit Wall Street, Silicon Valley, Hollywood, and multinational corporations ..."
"... What we might call the party of Bernie Sanders, on the other hand, is both more radical on questions of political correctness and identity and hostile to the established order. The party of Sanders wants radical change. Beginning with Medicare for all. ..."
"... What we have are four parties: The mainstream Republicans, the party of Trump, the mainstream Democrats, and the party of Sanders. ..."
"... White House chief strategist Steve Bannon's bizarre call to the editor of the liberal American Prospect ..."
"... But the effort is doomed to fail. In twenty-first century America culture and identity take precedence over economics, and it is in regards to culture and identity that the true break between left and right is found. ..."
"... metteur en scene ..."
"... The Benedict Option ..."
"... I feel the same way, redbrick. My patriotism has gradually dried up over the past 15 or so years. At this point, the US is the place where I live, nothing more. It's an administrative unit, not a nation. I love it in the same way I love the DMV or a utility service. ..."
"... As you get more towards the middle I think you find folks who are less urgent for big changes in either direction and who become less upset when policies swing away from their preferred position for a cycle or two. Yet they are more focused on competence, on keeping the trains running on time and on successfully passing to future generations the good that we already have. I suspect the Trump crazy train is bolstering this tendency. ..."
"... "And now Steve Bannon is gone. Don't think for a moment that is going to make any difference. " ..."
"... Ah, but it does make a difference. Bannon's presence was cause for mild hope that some part of Trump's populist agenda would be realized. ..."
"... Now it's clear that the coup / hijacking is well under way, with the usual vultures wrestling over the carcass. Meantime more immigration, more jobs for foreigners, bigger deficits, more wars, no "Wall", no infrastructure work, etc. ..."
"... Anyway, I think Trump is better off without Bannon with his sympathies to the alt right. (Unfortunately the alt right tendencies to go weird Zionist conspiracy theories is not helping.) ..."
"... It is a dangerous situation. I have often said I would prefer a clear feeling of victory for either side than this current "everyone loses" mentality. Currently, everyone is a rebel against the perceived mainstream, willing to see the rebels on the other side as the stormtroopers of the establishment. ..."
"... M_Young , says: August 18, 2017 at 11:23 pm ..."
"... Many here have come up with elaborate rational why a line can be drawn at removing the 'traitor' (untried, unconvicted, but hey, you know better than Grant) Robert E Lee. You believe other former heroes will remain unscathed. ..."
"... Well, today a statue of Saint Junipero Serra, pretty much founder of California, was vandalized as was an accompanying statue of a child. And lest you think that is all, there has already been a bill put forth in California to repeal and replace him as one of our state's representatives in the hall a statuary. ..."
"... http://losangeles.cbslocal.com/2017/08/17/junipero-serra-statue-vandalized/ ..."
"... And a Columbus statue in Houston was vandalized. ..."
"... http://abc13.com/security-stepped-up-amid-statue-vandalism-protests/2320244/ ..."
"... You see, this isn't about you white liberals with your reasoned arguments (such as they are). It's about how [blacks, 'Hispanics', Asians, Amerinds] feel ..."
"... James Hartwick , says: August 19, 2017 at 12:33 am ..."
"... KevinS: As a university professor, I can attest that most of my colleagues are of "the left." I do not think any of them ever heard of Antifa before last week. I know I had not. ..."
"... I'm curious then about what you and your colleagues thought about the protests, say, at Berkeley last winter, when Milo Yiannopoulos was to speak? There was violence (fists and bricks thrown apparently) and fires were set. Who did you think was doing that kind of stuff? ..."
"... Also, while TAC doesn't seem to have had many articles about antifa (others have covered that topic more thoroughly), Rod did mention it back in January, when a masked antifa sucker punched white nationalist Richard Spencer on the street and The Nation's Natasha Lennard praised him . ..."
"... Hound of Ulster , says: August 19, 2017 at 4:33 am ..."
"... Sadly, the radicals have the biggest megaphones right now. The vast center-right to center-left middle has been silenced by numerous minor changes in media and politics. ..."
"... It should be noted that in any other Western democracy, Trump never would have won because of his popular vote defeat. He is only president because of the elitist quirk of the Electoral College. Which, in the height of historical irony, was created by the Founders to prevent figures like him (Caesar-type populist dictators) from coming to power. Oops. ..."
"... John , says: August 19, 2017 at 6:33 am ..."
"... It is impossible to stop a trend. Those who oppose it will be mowed down. ..."
"... The right extremist faction is a puny force. It is just a convenient punching bag for the left to justify its will to power as it continues gearing up for an all out war on civil society. The trashing of Washington, DC protesting the inauguration of Trump as President of the USA; Charlottesville, Gainesville, Boston of the currently planned free-speech rallies are but preliminary to the really major battles of violence sure to erupt during the 2018 midterm elections, then predictably culminating in even a larger wave of assaults during the 2020 presidential election campaign. ..."
"... The rumble may start even sooner, say, the next time Trump attempts to have one of his usual rallies at some midwestern venue. ..."
"... The trend favors the left not the right because the country at large has an ideologically radicalized and committed liberal base, (the mainstream press, -the cultural elite-, most especially the universities, and a secularized "religious" establishment (Protestants, Catholics, and Jews,etc.,) and the right does not. Black Lives, other racial and and gender issues are the weapons of choice of the Left. They are not the real issues. At the end these stake holders, useful idiots, will be worse off than before, lumped together with the other vanquished. Power is the only thing at stake. ..."
"... Hollywood has been anticipating the future in a number of futuristic scenarios which depict chaotic, lawless societies following conflicts of large-scale disruptions. There is evil in the air. And evil has gone mainstream for many decades now. The 20th-21rst centuries produced massacres of epic proportions: WW I-II, Cambodia, ISIS are some of the worst examples. I would include the evil of abortion among humanity's greatest tragedies as well. It is an organized program financed with public funds worldwide. It has desensitized the globe to accept killing as nothing else has done before. North Korea just boasted of its ability to annihilate millions of its sisters and brothers on the other side of the DMZ and more oversees. Islamists killing innocents is a daily happening. ..."
"... The U.S. Congress, both parties, and the President must get together to head off the coming widespread domestic violence. The President should call upon the leaders to gather for an emergency consultation. Instead of aiding and abetting the ANTIFA movement the Democratic Party leadership must publicly repudiate ANTIFA leadership, members, and its aims. Unless and until they do there will be no solution to the disorder that is now well underway. ..."
Aug 20, 2017 | www.theamericanconservative.com
Matthew Continetti has a good piece about the dynamics tearing the country apart politically. He begins by talking about how Trump is dividing is own party, as well as factions within the nation at large. And:

Making things more complicated is the fact that there are more than these two parties. Drutman also found divisions within the Democrats. "To the extent that the Democratic Party is divided, these divisions are more about faith in the political system and general disaffection than they are about issue positions." The Democratic Party of Barack Obama and Bill and Hillary Clinton is satisfied with the status quo, and uses identity politics as a veneer for economic policies that benefit Wall Street, Silicon Valley, Hollywood, and multinational corporations .

What we might call the party of Bernie Sanders, on the other hand, is both more radical on questions of political correctness and identity and hostile to the established order. The party of Sanders wants radical change. Beginning with Medicare for all.

Recent events have brought to light the distinction between the party of Trump and the GOP. But it would be foolish for Democrats to believe that they are out of the woods, that America has settled, for the moment, on a three-party system. What we have are four parties: The mainstream Republicans, the party of Trump, the mainstream Democrats, and the party of Sanders.

White House chief strategist Steve Bannon's bizarre call to the editor of the liberal American Prospect magazine can be seen as a clumsy attempt to forge a new majority by rejecting the mainstream Republicans and aligning with the party of Sanders on trade, entitlements, and infrastructure spending.

But the effort is doomed to fail. In twenty-first century America culture and identity take precedence over economics, and it is in regards to culture and identity that the true break between left and right is found.

President Trump's isolation from the party whose nomination he wrested from insiders and scions is just part of a larger trend in American society and politics. The widening divisions within and between parties are symptoms of our fractured republic , of the unbundling, disaggregation, and dissociation of our communal lives. Mounting political violence, too, is a consequence of the polarization that estranges Americans from one another and turns every disagreement into an apocalyptic battle royal. Trump, McConnell, Pelosi, and Sanders are pulling the mystic cords of memory in four different directions. And they won't quit doing so. Until the cords snap.

It is striking how so many people are eager to exacerbate our divisions for political gain. As Continetti indicates, Steve Bannon has a theory that if he can get culture-war Democrats distracted by race, he can forge a new coalition. He told the liberal editor Robert Kuttner that it makes him happy to see all the fighting over statues, because in theory, it makes it possible for him to get done what he wants to get done. The best spin you can put on that is that it's breathtakingly cynical. But now we have this from the other side:

. @SpeakerRyan , it is time to immediately remove Confederate statues from the halls of Congress. https://t.co/twJ4MFOfgB pic.twitter.com/7Yx6p4JgCK

! Nancy Pelosi (@NancyPelosi) August 17, 2017

//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js

You do know, I trust, that in all the years that Nancy Pelosi was House speaker, she never said a peep about those abominable Confederate statues. But now she can energize her base with it, so here we are.

Trump will say or do something outrageous today that will ratchet up the tension. And then his enemies will respond in kind. It's all starting to bring to mind this passage from the contemporary German philosopher Peter Sloterdijk, describing the Weimar Republic:

Theatricality appeared to be the common denominator of all manifestations of life – from Expressionism to Marlene Dietrich's spectacular legs in Blue Angel ; from the bloody comedy of Hitler's 1923 putsch to Brecht's Threepenny Opera ; from the impressive funeral of Rathenau to the calculated banditry of the Reichstag fire of 1933. The permanent crisis proved to be an excellent metteur en scene , one who knew how to direct quite a few memorable effects.

Another Sloterdijk passage, which to me suggests Trump and what he stands for:

Fatally, the term "barbarian" is the password that opens up the archives of the twentieth century. It refers to the despiser of achievement, the vandal, the status denier, the iconoclast, who refuses to acknowledge any ranking rules or hierarchy. Whoever wishes to understand the twentieth century must always keep the barbaric factor in view. Precisely in more recent modernity, it was and still is typical to allow an alliance between barbarism and success before a large audience, initially more in the form of insensitive imperialism, and today in the costumes of that invasive vulgarity which advances into virtually all areas through the vehicle of popular culture. That the barbaric position in twentieth-century Europe was even considered the way forward among the purveyors of high culture for a time, extending to a messianism of uneducatedness, indeed the utopia of a new beginning on the clean slate of ignorance, illustrates the extent of the civilizatory crisis this continent has gone through in the last century and a half – including the cultural revolution downwards, which runs through the twentieth century in our climes and casts its shadow ahead onto the twenty-first.

We have not yet seen a left-wing Trump, but we will. That's because Trump is far less a producer of this decadent culture than a product of the decadent culture. That's why I write in The Benedict Option that he is no cure for the disease, but rather a symptom of it.

For quite some time now we have had the performative malice of right-wing talk radio hosts, manipulating the emotions of their listeners for the sake of ratings and political success. ( John Derbyshire wrote well about this a few years ago, for TAC. ) Today we have Milo's campus cabaret. On the Left, we have had for years to deal with the operatic rituals of political correctness, which entered into a new, more hysterical stage in 2015. People on both sides are enjoying this hate. With shared standards abandoned, people are reverting to tribalism, one aspect of which is finding unity and purpose in rallying against a common enemy.

I suppose this is to be expected in a culture of emotivism, in which people come to think of truth as what feels good to them. We didn't become emotivists the day before yesterday. This has been building in our culture for decades, and it is a natural extension of a core quality of the American character: individualism. On both the Left and the Right, we exalt the individual and his preferences. We do this in our different ways, with emphases on different aspects of the individual. But we all do it. Identity politics is what you get when people cease to try to get outside of their heads, and strive to live by ideals of the common good, and instead limit their politics solely to what's good for them and their tribe. It is perfectly ordinary politics to contend for one's own interests, but what makes identity politics so toxic is that it distorts political reality by decontextualizing the individual. That is to say, we stop thinking about how we, and our kind, relate to the whole, and focus entirely on ourselves and our desires.

In fact, we have come to think of our desires as defining our own identities. The Left pushes this farthest, of course, as we can see with its dogmatic insistence that if someone claims to be a woman or a man, then they are, despite biology. We see this in the Left's obsession with race, sex, and gender categories. Sometimes it seems that the only people in this country as obsessed with whiteness as white nationalists is the campus Left.

But I think the identity politics curse affects all of us. To be an identitarian is to start statements with formulations like, "Speaking as a Latinx lesbian ," and to believe that assertion is the same thing as argument. To dispute them, they believe, is to deny their personhood. If that is true, then democracy is impossible.

I have never heard people on the Right talk in precisely those terms, but I have heard the same manner of thinking ! or rather, not thinking, emotion ! manifested often on the Right. It's as if we (whoever constitutes "we") are the only real people, and everybody else is an abstraction that keeps us from getting what we want. And make no mistake: for identitarians of the Left and the Right, what we want is what we deserve .

The center