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 Lappé, excerpt from Time for Progressives to Grow Up

Saturday, June 5, 2021

Posts that I especially recommend for Saturday, June 5, 2021

Joe Biden’s asked US intelligence to investigate the origins of the deadly disease, and RT’s investigative journalist and No BS host Ben Swann is doing the same. He’ll be talking to political commentator Einar Tangen in Beijing, law professor Elaine Fahey and Nicolas Wade, one of the first journalists to report on the possibility of the Wuhan “lab-leak”.
The only thing I object to in this post is Romanoff's statements that imply that "Jews" are responsible for media propaganda that comprises a lie attached to a truth. He violates his own thesis that media propaganda is a lie attached to a truth. He seems to equate Zionists with Jews, but clearly not all Jews are Zionists. 
Jews were first identified with leftist Jews after the Russian Revolution by fascists in Western capitalist circles, most notably by pro-capitalist Nazis but also including major capitalists like Henry Ford. Clearly Jews, like any other ethnic group, have beliefs across the political spectrum from right (fascist-capitalists) to left (communist-socialists). Otherwise, his arguments are correct: capitalist propagandists mix truth with falsities in order to defend and advance their class interests.
Elite institutions in the past and doubtless still today have been major playgrounds for intelligence services. The history of the modern nation-state generally, not just the USA, seems to suggest that national unity — and therefore elite safety — is regarded by elites as achievable only through careful management and often suppression or diversion of dissent. Far more resources are typically committed to this than many citizens, drilled in the propaganda of democracy, realize or care to concede. [my emphasis]
and Macleod goes on to write:
A recent MintPress investigation explored how Bellingcat acts to launder national security state talking points into the mainstream under the guise of being neutral investigative journalists themselves.

Newly leaked documents show how Bellingcat, Reuters and the BBC were covertly cooperating with the U.K.’s Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) to undermine the Kremlin and promote regime change in Moscow.
He names names of graduates of Kings College that are hired to key positions in media corporations like Reuters, BBC, and CNN. 

Friday, June 4, 2021

Posts that I especially recommend for Friday, June 4, 2021

We do not know for sure if the COVID-19 virus escaped from the Wuhan lab, another lab, or jumped from animals to humans. But what we do know for certain — from the anthrax investigation — is that governments most definitely conduct the sort of research that could produce novel coronaviruses. Dr. Rosenberg, the subject of the 2002 New Yorker article, was suggesting that the F.B.I. was purposely impeding its own investigation because they knew that the anthrax actually came from the U.S. government’s own lab and wanted to prevent exposure of the real bio-research that is done there. We should again ponder why the pervasive mainstream doubts about the F.B.I.’s case against Ivins have been memory-holed. We should also reflect on what we learned about government research into highly lethal viruses and bacterial strains from that still-strange episode.

Thursday, June 3, 2021

Posts that I especially recommend for Thursday, June 3, 2021

The fact that there can be that drastic of a shift from something no pundit or politician may say to something they’re encouraged to talk about all the time—all at once, at the drop of a hat—says so much about what the political/media class is and how it works in our society. How utterly uninterested in truth and facts it is. How arbitrary its dictates are. How completely made-up its ongoing story of the world is. It just says what’s convenient for the powerful, and when that’s not convenient anymore it switches to something else. 
Engdahl argues that the "infrastructure bill" is mostly propaganda to fool the American public (once again), but will actually promote the transnational capitalist Empire's virtuous sounding phrase "Green Agenda". The latter is, in turn, promoted to hide "Agenda 21" to seem more palatable to the brainwashed American public. Here is what the editor of Technocracy says about Agenda 21:
From its inception in 1992 at the United Nation’s Earth Summit, 50,000 delegates, heads of state, diplomats and Non-governmental organizations (NGOs) hailed Agenda 21 as the “comprehensive blueprint for the reorganization of human society.” The 350-page, 40 chapter, Agenda 21 document was quite detailed and explicit in its purpose and goals. They warned us that the reorganization would be dictated through all-encompassing policies affecting every aspect of our lives, using environmental protection simply as the excuse to pull at our emotions and get us to voluntarily surrender our liberties.
But what this editor doesn't understand is that the capitalist ruling class's motive is to try to salvage the capitalist system, which has brought capitalists so much wealth and power, in their recognition that a finite planet cannot accept a system that results in unending growth. Or, to put it differently, this plan is a desperate attempt to save capitalism in a limit-bound finite planet. The editor compounds this misunderstanding with his well-indoctrinated ignorance about socialism.
 ... for reasons that have yet to be explained to the American people, when it comes to the $1.7 trillion cryptocurrency market – which is effectively a con-game based on the greater fool theory, nothing is regulated. Not the crypto currency; not the promoters; not the crypto exchanges; and not the firms that are providing as much as 100 times leverage to fuel this “rat poison squared,” as the legendary investor Warren Buffett has characterized Bitcoin. (See The Smartest Guys in the Room Call Bitcoin “Rat Poison Squared,” “a Colossal Pump-and-Dump Scheme” and “a Big Criminal Scam” but Federal Regulators Look the Other Way.)
  • Notes on Turning Seventy by John Steppling from his weblog. Steppling, who presently lives in Norway, is an American playwright, author, etc. who writes like somebody who has been extensively educated. And, it takes such a person (with a lot of time) to fully understand his writing. A few quotes from his article reveals much:
The most profound artworks demand something impossible from the viewer ... One problem is this idea that Kafka (but substitute any major novelist) is tracing out the shaping of the modern subject — through capitalism (or mastery over nature, etc) but then leaving capitalism as a universal. As if God created Capitalism on day 8. One cannot write criticism without being critical, of all things. Of oneself. If not, the class system is absolved, class struggle and political repression. They become a form of Nature.
And he concludes his article with this insightful statement:

Culture is an indicator for the mental and physical health of a society. The trend toward fascism is sickness. The fascist state is the apotheosis of sickness; physical and moral. The ruling class has no respect for anyone outside their small circle.
  • A Decade On: West’s War on Syria Continues by Brian Berletic from New Eastern Outlook. My reaction: The two main corporations that feed Empire's "news" agencies with propaganda, AP (Associated Press) and Reuters, keep the people of the US/Anglo/Zionist Empire in ignorance about what is actually happening in the Mid-East.
On Tuesday, the new head of Israel’s Mossad spy agency suggested more Israeli covert attacks and assassinations inside Iran should be expected even as the US and other world powers are negotiating a revival of the nuclear deal, known as the JCPOA.

Wednesday, June 2, 2021

Posts that I especially recommend for Wednesday, June 2, 2021

  • Fact-Checking the Fact-Checking by Brad Fredricks, a guest post, for Surviving Capitalism (Not). (Note: This is a commentary to an article "Coronavirus Fact-Check #11: Is Sars-Cov-2 a bioweapon?" that I posted recently on Sunday.) Fredrick's commentary follows:
The article has many biases baked into it.

The Lab Leak Theory has supporting evidence. I will grant that fact-checking is not intelligence analysis, where you often have bits of information, gaps of information, and the consideration of the credibility of your sources to factor out.

One of the big issues to bubble up out of covid is how we assert a fact. At some point in history, it was a “fact” that the world was flat. Then someone disproved this “fact”, and they were discredited repeatedly, with the language used to marginalize and delegitimize the notion.

I have been trained as a fact-checker, and as an intelligence analyst. The two have some similarities, but fact-checkers fall short in big ways. For example, fact-checkers are unlikely to check source credibility. This happened with anyone who used The Lancet Report as a source of “fact” to make the claim that the lab-leak theory was not credible.

The statement was written by Dr. Peter Daszak, the President of EcoHealth Alliance, who funneled cash to the Wuhan Lab for research on Coronavirus. The research is called “Gain-of-function” and was banned under the Obama administration. Fauci shifted funds to EcoHealth Alliance, which in turn funded the Wuhan Lab.

The Lancet statement was written by Dr. Daszak, and signed by the other industry figureheads, virtually shutting down this line of investigation. A fact-checker would stop at the report coming from Lancet, as it is considered a “credible source”. An intelligence analyst, investigator, or journalist would look at the names on the report, who authored it, and the credibility of someone authoring it having a significant reason to post this would have been noted, and accounted for.

Facebook and most other Fact-Checking outlets somehow glossed over this glaringly obvious issue, and it is not the first false covid related paper to be released on The Lancet. The other notable paper was a falsified report on the effectiveness/ dangers of Hydroxychloroquine.

Another interesting coincidence about these reports, besides both being related to covid, is that they were also countering statements from the Trump administration. It appears that the politicization of covid extended into science and fact-checking. It is very difficult to counter socially normalized narratives, even people with pockets full of proof began to question themselves.

The coincidence of the series of events is astounding. The framing of this fact-check on whether or not covid was a bio-weapon is nearly impossible to verify or assert. First, one would have to know the intent of the creator, so as to establish the first line of credibility into it being a bio-weapon. Second, one has to question the ethics of undermining an investigation before it has begun, and how “fact-checking” can serve darker intentions.

The question of motivations and finances does not stop at the door of Fauci, or even the research into covid's origins and intents, it goes into the entire realm of journalism, fact-checking, and capitalism.

How can anyone declare themselves free of bias when a paycheck is floating in the wind if they counter a narrative that a financier does not approve of? The fact-checkers failed multiple times during covid, be it Ivermectin, the lab leak theory, or even the morbidity rates.

Fact-Checking is rough work. Sometimes you get overwhelmed with so many claims that it becomes difficult to sort through them all, or even identify what is called a “central claim”. Beyond this, a fact-checker must understand Academic article review, what are legitimate vs illegitimate testing methodologies, and specifically as they pertain to a certain set of claims or research.

If there’s anything I have learned in my training in fact-checking and intelligence analysis, it is this. Question everything, as many things are not what they appear to be.

In the articles final assertions they present the following:

“In conclusion: No direct evidence that the alleged Sars-Cov-2 virus was created in a lab has ever been produced. It’s nothing like as virulent as you’d expect a bioweapon to be, and logically an actual virus would not serve the Deep State agenda as well as a largely imaginary one. Maybe the virus was grown in a lab, maybe it just jumped from bats to people. Since all evidence suggests it’s not very dangerous, it doesn’t really matter. The debate sure does make a good distraction though.”

This statement is misleading.

There is evidence to suggest that the origins of Covid-19 came from a lab, but we do not understand the intent of the researchers. The evidence is based on what is known as a “Poly furin Cleavage site”. These are commonly used in a gain of function research to create “chimera” viruses because it is easy to work with, and makes the virus more potent. They are not as common in nature. In addition to this, is the PRRA insert at the S1/S2 site within SARSCov-2, which is a gain of function not found in nature. There is no patient zero found, who would show the crossover of covid to humans. Making the finding of the origin an incredibly important event.

The uncanny similarity of the PRRA insert to those of HIV 1, with no known similarities found in nature in other covid viruses makes its natural origins even more unlikely, making it even more important to avoid declarative absolute statements that are common to fact-checking.

The truth is, we don’t know where it came from, and thus have the ethical obligation to explore all possible origins, awkward or not.

This article is misleading.

NOTE: I am biased in my views of the origins of Covid-19. In my assessment, it is more than likely an accidental release from the Wuhan Lab, sometime between October and November of 2019. The accidental release of this would implicate not just China, but also the United States.
Because nobody in a position to answer that question appears to have any interest in finding out the truth – or at least, they have no interest in the rest of us learning the truth. Not China. Not US policy-makers. Not the World Health Organisation. And not the corporate media.

The only thing we can state with certainty is this: our understanding of the origins of Covid has been narratively managed over the past 15 months and is still being narratively managed. We are being told only what suits powerful political, scientific and commercial interests.

The development of the productive forces in human history is best measured by the level and pace of change in the productivity of labour. And there is no doubt, as Marx and Engels first argued in the Communist Manifesto, that capitalism has been the most successful system so far in raising the productivity of labour to produce more goods and services for humanity (indeed, see my recent post). ....

But Marx also argued that the underlying contradiction of the capitalist mode of production is between profit and productivity. Rising productivity of labour should lead to improved living standards for humanity including reducing the hours, weeks and years of toil in producing goods and services for all. But under capitalism, even with rising labour productivity, global poverty remains, inequalities of income and wealth are rising and the bulk of humanity has not been freed from daily toil.

  • Science Update: Megadrought in Western USA featuring Prof. (retired) Guy McPherson, an independent scientist (via his YouTube channel--06:00m), who has focused on the climate crisis, reviewing scientific articles regarding the climate crisis.

Tuesday, June 1, 2021

Posts that I especially recommend for Tuesday, June 1, 2021

The irony of course is that capitalism was supposed to offer something different. It was meant to offer a life of more leisure and free time. Technology was supposed to advance in ways that would bring public holidays every month, possibly even every week. Luminaries like economist John Maynard Keynes dreamt of a 15-hour work week by 2030. Yet capitalism has produced the exact opposite. Its effect has been to preserve and extend work. It has also created problems in the content and meaning of work.
  • 💥Israel, a Beachead in the Middle East by Stephan Gowans at the Institute for the Critical Study of Society (ICSS Marxist). This is a best post. (Note: This is a webinar featuring a talk by Gowans via YouTube arranged by this Oakland, California Institute. Gowans' talk begins after the introduction at 03:59m and ends at 58:36m followed by a Q&A. (I recommend the talk only because he has recently done extensive research on Israel which resulted in a book.)
One US military leader has called Israel “the intelligence equivalent of five CIAs.” An Israeli cabinet minister likens his country to “the equivalent of a dozen US aircraft carriers,” while the Jerusalem Post defines Israel as the executive of a “superior Western military force that” protects “America’s interests in the region.” Arab leaders have called Israel “a club the United States uses against the Arabs,” and “a poisoned dagger implanted in the heart of the Arab nation.”

In his latest book, Israel, A Beachhead in the Middle East, Stephen Gowans challenges the specious argument that Israel controls US foreign policy, tracing the development of the self-declared Jewish state, from its conception in the ideas of Theodore Herzl, to its birth as a European colony, through its efforts to suppress regional liberation movements, to its emergence as an extension of the Pentagon, integrated into the US empire as a pro-imperialist Sparta of the Middle East.
  • Colombia: “The Government Murders with Impunity because the U.S. Empire is Behind it.” by Carlos Aznarez from  Internationalist 360°. (Note: This is a report of the US's major beachhead in South America to police that continent for any nation that aspires to become independent.) My reaction: This is another instance where the well-indoctrinated American people, many of whom are struggling to survive, ignore such a report--if they are exposed to it at all.
  • The Yenisey River sheds its icy coat from RT via YouTube. My reaction: More evidence of global warming that is currently threatening human species (and most others). Isn't it ironic to see a Wikipedia entry on this river in Russia's Siberia before which YouTube warns you about Russian influence in a quote from a corrupted Wikipedia entry?
  • Means of Extinction: Conspicuous Consumption featuring Prof. (retired) Guy McPherson, an independent scientist (via his YouTube channel--3:20m) who has focused on the climate crisis. My reaction: Because McPherson is a physical scientist and not a social scientist, he is not aware that capitalism, and its propaganda machine of advertising, constantly exhorts people to consume unnecessary products to promote profits and power for the capitalist ruling classes. Thus capitalism has caused the climate crisis which McPherson argues with much evidence that abrupt global warming will result in the extinction of humans and most other species inhabiting the Earth. That is precisely why capitalists are now energetically exploring other planets in the hope of migrating there after they have spoiled the Earth for humans.

Monday, May 31, 2021

Posts that I especially recommend for Monday, May 31, 2021

  • Antiganda in Action on Declare Your Independence​ from James Corbett's website The Corbett Report (49:59m). (Note: I assume that the title, "Antiganda", means a play on the word "propaganda". Also, Corbett is a Canadian living in Japan for about 16 years.)
  • Al Pacino Afraid To Get "Canceled" from Jimmy Dore's comedy show on his YouTube channel. (Note: Dore talks to a voice that claims he is "Al Pacino" by phone for comic and satirical effect.) 
  • FFWN: “YouTube Will Annihilate My Channel If I Even Mention This” (with E. Michael Jones) from one of Dr. Barrett's platforms FFWN ("False Flag Weekly News") in a video discussion on current topics with Dr. Jones (about one hour) from False Flag Weekly News, one of Barrett's websites. Notice that Barrett also carries the discussion to YouTube at about 20:30m into the podcast. (Note: Dr. Barrett taught at the University of Wisconsin until he was blacklisted in 2006 by the ruling class who disapproved of his views and analysis.) My reaction: This source is one of the best of alternative media.
  • Why We Need to Distribute and Democratise Wealth by Richard D. Wolff from Economy for All/Newsclick. My reaction: Wolff misses the social and economic injustice built into the system of capitalism by ignoring the power that wealth gives to capitalists which lead inevitably to the concentration of wealth and power for this class in addition to all the economic and social disparities. This feature necessarily creates class warfare as first pointed out in the writings of Karl Marx verboten to most people.  

Sunday, May 30, 2021

Posts that I especially recommend for Sunday, May 30, 2021

  • Is Ivermectin the new Penicillin? by Dr. Justus R. Hope, MD fro The Desert Review. (Note: This post from an unnamed activist source (according to his wishes) writes the following:  
Vermectin, an anti-parasitic drug placed the same radioactive category as Hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) for the treatment of COVID-19, has reemerged as a promising treatment in the battle to extinguish the pandemic. 
New York Times best-selling author Michael Capuzzo has called it the "drug that cracked Covid," writing that there are “hundreds of thousands, actually millions, of people around the world, from Uttar Pradesh in India to Peru to Brazil, who are living and not dying.”
Doctors in India are big fans 
Maybe the virus was grown in a lab, maybe it just jumped from bats to people. Since all evidence suggests it’s not very dangerous, it doesn’t really matter.

The debate sure does make a good distraction though. 
Does it matter that many after the age of 70 died from it if it was designed and used as a bioweapon for whatever purpose? What about all the severe restrictions on people's civil rights that were dictated by various governments of the world based on the declaration of WHO that the threat constituted a pandemic and the virtual diktats by the CDC or similar agencies throughout governments of the world? What about the censorship that was imposed on many other relevant medical specialists who differed about various aspects of the declared pandemic?
  • The Bogus January 6 Commission Poses a Real Threat to Freedom by James Bovard from Mises Institute. (Note: Mises Institute is a nationalist capitalist website/weblog which features old-fashioned capitalists who no longer control the US/Anglo/Zionist Empire. The latter is controlled by "neoliberals" or transnational capitalists.)
... we can either prepare for the ultimate disaster that disaster capitalism gives us, or, put our heads back in that sand ....
I remember one of the first acts formally announcing a Cold War against the Soviet Union after the conclusion of WWII (1st article) was Winston Churchill's speech in Fulton, Missouri (with Pres. Harry Truman on the stage) in 1946 declaring that an "iron curtain has descended" across Europe. This was a shock to the American people because we had been allied in WWII with the Soviet Union against the Axis powers
The West Snubs Russia over V-E Day - Consortiumnews
This was followed a year later with the Un-American Activities Committee investigations of Hollywood playwrights, directors, and actors that weren't sufficiently anti-communist enough to suit the interests of the capitalist ruling class. This constituted a major purge of all left-wing influential people associated with the Hollywood film industry in order to stifle any kind of dissent and further propagandize people into smearing any kind of socialism. Churchill's visceral hatred of the Russian Revolution and his role beginning with the capitalist intervention in the Russian Civil War made him an exceptionally qualified person (in the eyes of the ruling capitalist class) to announce this new effort against the Soviet Union. 
If Biden were genuinely interested in learning how to prevent a future pandemic he would be exploring how to prevent zoonotic spillovers, both in nature, and in the lab. On the other hand, if he’s interested in tarring the reputation of a country he has labelled a competitor, as his predecessor was, he is proceeding along the right path. Unfortunately, that path has nothing to do with protecting humanity from future pandemics.
  • Ask an Ecologist Anything -- Saturday, May 29, 2021 featuring Prof. (retired) Guy McPherson, an independent scientist who has focused on the climate crisis, from his YouTube channel. (Note: This has been removed from YouTube by the administrators of this platform. Apparently he said something which they, in their scientific wisdom, do not like.)