We’ve lived so long under the spell of hierarchy—from god-kings to feudal lords to party bosses—that only recently have we awakened to see not only that “regular” citizens have the capacity for self-governance, but that without their engagement our huge global crises cannot be addressed. The changes needed for human society simply to survive, let alone thrive, are so profound that the only way we will move toward them is if we ourselves, regular citizens, feel meaningful ownership of solutions through direct engagement. Our problems are too big, interrelated, and pervasive to yield to directives from on high.
—Frances Moore LappĂ©, excerpt from Time for Progressives to Grow Up

Saturday, March 3, 2018

Colonizing the Western Mind

Click here to access article by Jason Hirthler posted on The Greanville Post

I think this article provides much food for thought about the launching of neoliberalism by the ruling capitalist class that, according to the author, started in the 1970s and reached full bloom in the 1980s under the Reagan administration. 

Still, I experienced annoyance at the wording of numerous statements which I, as a pretend editor, would have re-phrased. Some examples of this (in order of their appearance):
  • Instead of "On the left, the ruling ideology might be described as neoliberalism, a particularly vicious form of imperial capitalism that, as would be expected, is camouflaged in the lineaments of humanitarian aid and succor.", I would have re-written as "Leftists began to describe this ruling ideology as neoliberalism, ...."
  • Instead of "The ideological assumptions, which serve to justify what you could call neocolonial tactics, are relatively clear: the rights of the individual to be free of overreach from monolithic institutions like the state.", I would have written "... the rights of individual capitalists must be mostly free of interventions by the state."
  • Instead of "Together, an unshackled economy and an unfettered populace, newly equipped with individual rights, would produce the same flourishing and nourishing demos of mid-century America that had been the envy of humanity.", I would have written "By unshackling capitalists from government regulations while promoting more freedom for various social identities (such as gay and women's prerogatives), the neoliberalists disguised the former behind the wide publicity for the latter."
  • Instead of "The enduring lie is that there is no democracy without economic democracy.", I would write "The enduring lie is that there is no kind of democracy that limits the freedom for capitalists to participate in the economy." 
  • Then I would simply replace the last paragraph, which does nothing to advance his argument, with a summary of his thesis that would be something like this: "The ruling capitalist class began in the 1970s to construct a highly organized effort to advance a neoliberal agenda through its overwhelming control of corporate media and other institutions such as the film industry and education. The latter advanced the liberalizing themes of social identity while mostly disguising the steady promotion of government deregulation and lessening the restrictions placed on capitalist enterprise. Meanwhile, military interventions abroad in support of capitalist interests were always framed in corporate media has a promotion of human rights and freedoms. Such highly organized efforts effectively colonized the Western mind to support the ruling class's neoliberal agenda."  

Friday, March 2, 2018

Recommended articles for March 2, 2018

What we now recognize is that Trump, as with so many other politicians around the “free world,” has “handlers” and serves an agenda. That agenda clearly threatens human survival. Who profits by this?
My answer regarding Trump's handlers is: an executive network of top capitalists from primarily the financial sector but also includes industrial corporations, the military establishment, and academia. They function secretly in "think tanks" such the Council on Foreign Relations, Brookings Institute, Atlantic Council, and many others.

Thursday, March 1, 2018

Recommended articles for March 1, 2018

  • Escalation In Syria – How Far Can The Russians Be Pushed? by "The Saker" and posted on Southfront. The author uses sound political reasoning to suggest some very realistic future scenarios in the complicated, dangerous, and crucial international political contest currently developing in Syria and adjacent areas.
  • Xi Jinping’s power grab: Bonapartism with Chinese characteristics by Peter Symonds from World Socialist Web Site. Although I believe emerging nations of Russia, China, and Iran are posing necessary challenges to the US-led capitalist Empire, I still have mixed feelings about where these nations are headed. I am posting this article because it challenges the views of people who believe that these emerging nations (and their ruling classes) can do nothing wrong.

The [Continuing] War Against Alternative Information

Click here to access article by Rick Sterling, a re-post from January 2017 from ConsortiumNews. (a "best post")

This post updates the legalization of the propaganda war being waged against the American people as revealed in yesterday's post by Debbie Lusignan on her YouTube channel called Sane Progressive. A more recent law was passed at the end of 2016 that established a specific agency to fill the minds of ordinary Americans with propaganda designed to promote the interests of the Empire's trans-nationalist capitalist ruling class.
The U.S. establishment is not content simply to have domination over the media narratives on critical foreign policy issues, such as Syria, Ukraine and Russia. It wants total domination. Thus we now have the “Countering Foreign Propaganda and Disinformation Act” that President Obama signed into law on Dec. 23 as part of the National Defense Authorization Act for 2017, setting aside $160 million to combat any “propaganda” that challenges Official Washington’s version of reality.
As Sterling later explains:
The new law is remarkable for a number of reasons, not the least because it merges a new McCarthyism about purported dissemination of Russian “propaganda” on the Internet with a new Orwellianism by creating a kind of Ministry of Truth – or Global Engagement Center – to protect the American people from “foreign propaganda and disinformation."
As part of the effort to detect and defeat these unwanted narratives, the law authorizes the Center to: “Facilitate the use of a wide range of technologies and techniques by sharing expertise among Federal departments and agencies, seeking expertise from external sources, and implementing best practices.” (This section is an apparent reference to proposals that Google, Facebook and other technology companies find ways to block or brand certain Internet sites as purveyors of “Russian propaganda” or “fake news.”)
Thus, this propaganda war against ordinary Americans is now completely legal. We are their new enemy! Of course, we always were enemies of the ruling capitalist class, but these new laws provides a legal basis for their government to wage war against us.

Wednesday, February 28, 2018

Recommended articles for 2/28/2018

International Israeli Apartheid Week (IAW) is an international series of events that seek to raise awareness of Israel’s apartheid system over the Palestinian people and to build support for the growing Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement. Many people remember apartheid as a dark chapter in the history of South Africa and the world. But for the Palestinian people, apartheid isn’t history; it is a brutal, daily reality.
William Pepper, author of Orders to Kill, An Act of State and The Plot to Kill King, gave the keynote address at the 13th Annual 9/11 Film Festival at the Grand Lake Theatre in Oakland, California on September 11th, 2017.  Pepper speaks about his early years; the War in Vietnam; his work with Robert Kennedy; his friendship and work with Dr. King, King's assassination; his latest book with explosive new evidence about King’s murder; as counsel for wrongfully convicted Sirhan Sirhan, the mind-controlled patsy in the RFK assassination; control of the media; Fidel Castro and Hugo Chavez; and the political nature of these assassinations. 

Entire CRISIS INDUSTRY Arose After Legalization of Psych-Ops in 2012 NDAA -- (a "best post")

Click here if you wish to access the video directly from YouTube which features Debbie Lusignan on her YouTube channel called Sane Progressive carefully explaining the crisis industry that has rapidly arisen after the Smith–Mundt Act (2012).

The Act was tacked onto the infamous National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2013. This implications of this Act allowed propaganda and psychological operations (PSYOPS) to be legal within the USA. The designers of this bill carefully avoided explicitly mentioning that what was legal for US government agencies to use PSYOPS as well as propaganda in foreign countries, was now legal within the USA with the passage of this Act. Here is the pertinent language of the 2012 amendment to the Smith–Mundt Act of 1948:
Board of Governors are authorized to use funds appropriated or otherwise made available for public diplomacy information programs to provide for the preparation, dissemination, and use of information intended for foreign audiences abroad about the United States, its people, and its policies, through press, publications, radio, motion pictures, the Internet, and other information media, including social media, and through information centers, instructors, and other direct or indirect means of communication.
Thus, all the propaganda issued abroad by such organizations as Voice of America, Radio Free Europe, Radio Marti, etc., were now legal in addition to the PSYOPS engaged in by the CIA all over the world. They just adjusted the Smith-Mundt Act to release the restrictions on the original bill of 1948 that prohibited such operations within the USA. This paved the way for the burgeoning "crisis industry". Lusignan carefully explains the growth and the details of many companies that consist of this industry. 

Because of personal issues that are taking much of my time, I didn't have time to listen to all of the video. I listened basically to the first 30 minutes. But this material is outstanding. It contains her basic argument that the passage of the NDAA bill of 2013 permitted propaganda and PSYOPS within the USA, the details of the various companies that engage in fake political operations, and an excellent summary (from 28:00m to 30:00m) of the material she has presented so far. (You may need to wait a few more seconds for the following video to upload on your device.)

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

US Senate report details funding of patient advocacy groups by opioid manufacturers

Click here to access article by Brian Dixon from World Socialist Web Site.

Although Dixon's report focuses mainly on one minority report issued by a member of the Senate Homeland Security & Governmental Affairs, Missouri Senator Claire McCaskill, he also cites other research from other sources that support the main thesis of this report as reported by the Executive summary of the report:
The fact that these same manufacturers provided millions of dollars to the groups described below suggests, at the very least, a direct link between corporate donations and the advancement of opioids friendly messaging. By aligning medical culture with industry goals in this way, many of the groups described in this report may have played a significant role in creating the necessary conditions for the U.S. opioids epidemic.
The article lends support to the generalization that not only big corporations associated with the "legitimate" drug corporations, but all major corporations, including especially major financial and industrial, collude by using their riches to induce and corrupt other smaller sectors of the economy to support their profits (and ultimately power). This is so typical of a fascist type of capitalist governing system in which riches are used without any significant government regulations--because they control the government--as a method to extract ever more profits and concentrated power.

State Department Troll Farm Receives Huge Cash Infusion

Click here to access article by Bernhard from Moon of Alabama.

The author digs up the latest efforts to strengthen the ongoing efforts by the US ruling capitalist class to enclose your minds and that of people residing in the nations governed by the US-led Empire into thought concentration camps under their control. They have learned much from the experience of corporate efforts to successfully sell products to American consumers, and are now applying these lessons to capture our political thoughts as well. 

Although financial and industrial corporations rule the Empire--and this constitutes fascism--the US Empire fascists prefer the more cost-effective methods of mind manipulation to that of brute force which characterized so much of the efforts of classical fascist governments of German and Italian capitalist ruling classes in the 1930s and early 1940s.

US Collapse – the Spectacle of Our Time

Click here to access article by Finian Cunningham from Sputnik. (While I am distracted with personal tasks, I am so appreciative that activists like Christopher (northwest Oregon) who draw my attention to outstanding articles like this to post on my website.)

Yes, this website is sponsored by the Russian government, but there is no evidence to even suggest that the views expressed are sponsored by either Russian capitalists or nationalists. In contrast to US media corporations which pitch pure propaganda in an increasingly failing effort to promote the hegemonic interests of the declining US-led Empire, Russia government sponsored websites invite independent journalists from all over the world to express their views. And I'm sure that Cunningham would not be posting articles on their website if he was pressured to promote any particular interest except that of the truth as he sees it.

In this article the Irish journalist Cunningham places so much responsibility on ordinary Americans like us to prevent a nuclear war conflagration and end the rule of the hegemonic US-led Empire peacefully so that humans can have a future to create better social systems. Of course, he is right. Are we up to (capable of meeting) this challenge?
World history has reached a foreboding cross-roads due to the collapsing of the American Empire. Can we navigate a safe path forward avoiding catastrophic war that often accompanies the demise of empires?

A lot, it seems, depends on ordinary American people becoming politically organized to challenge their dysfunctional system run by and for the elites. If the American people cannot hold their elites to account and break their corrupt rule, overhauling it with something more equitable and democratic, then the world is in peril of being plunged into total war. We can only but wish our American brothers and sisters solidarity and success.

Monday, February 26, 2018

Recommended articles for 2/26/2018 (to maintain your sanity while living in the Empire's open psychiatric ward)

Lee Camp gives us a shortlist of major media networks who hire war profiteers to give us their take on foreign policy. Naomi Karavani explains how employees are stealing workers’ wages and John F. O’Donnell updates us on the privatization and militarization of the relief efforts in Puerto Rico.

Sunday, February 25, 2018

CIA, Media & The Mind-Controlled Opposition

Click here if you wish to access this rather lengthy (nearly 1hr and 17minutes), but important video directly from YouTube that I have embedded below my commentary. (At 7:45 AM on 2/27/2018 I edited the last paragraph to clarify my views regarding Seymour Hersh.)
In this edition of Probable Cause Newsbud Founder and Editor Sibel Edmonds is joined by Douglas Valentine, author of several non-fiction books, one novel, and one volume of poetry. He has lectured and appeared on TV and radio talk shows, testified as an expert witness, served as a documentary film consultant and worked as a private investigator. His most recent book is The CIA as Organized Crime: How Illegal Operations Corrupt America and the World. Edmonds and Valentine discuss the influence and operations of the CIA abroad and domestically, while controlling the Media.
After introductory remarks the host of the show and founder of Newsbud, formerly Boiling Frogs Post, and well-known whistleblower, Sibel Edmonds interviews Douglas Valentine (see this and this), author of many books, the most recent of which is entitled The CIA as Organized Crime. She starts out by asking Valentine about his impressions of the Neflix production of Wormwood (on my recommended films list). He tends to go on and on making cynical statements about Seymour Hersh which overwhelms the significance of the Wormwood series that mostly exposes the bio-weapons research that scientist Frank Olson was engaged in, and his subsequent murder in 1953 at the hands of the CIA when he posed a threat to expose what they were doing.

Following this Edmonds asks about the CIA to which Valentine engages in a lengthy answer with various statements that suggest that they are a nebulous bureaucracy with agents embedded everywhere: in corporate media, government, military, educational institutions like Harvard, in left-wing organizations, etc. 

When she asks him about the relationship of the CIA to the Deep State, his answer is even more nebulous: "they are millions of people working together." He doesn't seem to make any distinction between the CIA and the Deep State. Much later in the interview he makes several references to a "ruling class" in relation to the creation of heroes in American culture (in order to promote the consumption of products), but this is totally absent when he answers her question about the relationship of the CIA to the Deep State. It's clear to me that he doesn't really know much about the contemporary ruling class and their interests in promoting the Empire's capitalist interests and hegemony. He's so obsessed with the CIA that he can't see the bigger picture. 

With my long time experience with Edmonds' websites, I don't think she understands either about the economic and political nature of the Deep State as the executive political network of the ruling capitalist class. 

However, I don't wish to downplay the excellent contributions by Edmonds and Valentine who have frequently exposed the machinations of the secret intelligence agencies or the fake journalists that serve them. Except for Hersh about whom I am withholding judgement, as the Brits would say, they are "spot-on"! (def.)

Recommended articles for 2/25/2018