Tuesday, June 20, 2017
John Chuckman is former chief economist for a large Canadian oil company. He has many interests and is a lifelong student of history. He writes with a passionate desire for honesty, the rule of reason, and concern for human decency. John regards it as a badge of honor to have left the United States as a poor young man from the South Side of Chicago when the country embarked on the pointless murder of something like 3 million Vietnamese in their own land because they embraced the wrong economic loyalties. He lives in Canada, which he is fond of calling “the peaceable kingdom.”
John’s writing appears regularly on many Internet sites. He has been translated into at least ten languages and has been regularly translated into Italian and Spanish. Several of his essays have been published in book collections, including two college texts. He has published a book, The Decline of the American Empire and the Rise of China as a Global Power, published by Constable and Robinson, London. John also writes book reviews.
Apart from his writing since retiring from the oil industry, John has taught university courses in economics, done a good deal of private tutoring, served as a professional newspaper restaurant reviewer (he likes cooking), followed his favorite hobby of photography, and created a popular family of image blogs on the Internet.
John may be reached directly at: email@example.com
SOME INTERNET SITES FROM JOHN CHUCKMAN:
CHUCKMAN'S PORT STANLEY
CHUCKMAN'S ILES DE LA MADELEINE (MAGDALEN ISLANDS)
CHUCKMAN'S PORT STANLEY
CHUCKMAN'S ILES DE LA MADELEINE (MAGDALEN ISLANDS)
CHUCKMAN PHOTOS ON WORDPRESS: CHICAGO NOSTALGIA AND MEMORABLIA (SELECTED POSTCARDS AND RESTAURANT ITEMS)
CHUCKMAN’S PLACES ON WORDPRESS
CHUCKMAN’S PHOTOS ON WORDPRESS: TORONTO NOSTALGIA AND MEMORABLIA
CHUCKMAN' S NON-SPORTS TRADING CARDS OF THE 1950s VOL.1/4
CHUCKMAN’S GALLERY OF GROTESQUES
CHUCKMAN’S CARTOON COMMENTS
CHUCKMAN'S MISCELLANEA OF WORDS
CHUCKMAN'S COMMENTS FROM THE WORLD PRESS
CHUCKMAN'S POLITICAL ESSAYS
JOHN CHUCKMAN COMMENT: MORE TROOPS TO AFGHANISTAN? - HERE IS WHY THAT IS JUST STUPID - INDEED WHY EVER SENDING ANY TROOPS THERE IN THE FIRST PLACE WAS STUPID
COMMENT POSTED TO ARTICLE IN UNREPORTED TODAY
Sending more troops to Afghanistan isn’t the answer
Sending any troops to Afghanistan has never been an answer to anything. It is vicious lunacy at best.
The original invasion was a brainless response to something the country had nothing to do with.
Yes, as devout Muslims, the then-government of the country, the Taliban, had permitted bin Laden to reside there.
But when the US high-handedly demanded his extradition without providing a shred of evidence against him – quite simply, the normal procedure in all international extraditions – the Taliban refused, making it clear that they would extradite if provided evidence.
Well, the US never provided any evidence. And you know what? It has never provided any evidence to Americans either of bin Laden’s responsibility for 9/11. None. All we have is the corporate press making the same assertions that it made all those years ago without any real evidence.
So they invaded, and in truth achieved nothing.
American troops have behaved brutally there for years, creating many atrocities.
Their early approach involved going from village to village, using stun grenades, knocking down people’s doors, holding whole families at gunpoint, and taking away the men almost the way Stalin’s secret police did in the USSR. Can you imagine the fears and bad feelings this generated in an old-fashioned rural society?
That horrible behavior was compounded by a whole series of slaughters in villages as trigger-happy, nervous American kids who didn’t understand the language or the customs and who hated the heat and dust they were consigned to, kids with big guns decided they did not like something and simply blasted away. It happened dozens of times. The same for air attacks on some perfectly innocent villages by trigger-happy American pilots.
When you treat people horribly, you make enemies.
Another “benefit” of America’s shabby invasion was to release poor Afghanistan farmers from the strict prohibition the Taliban had imposed on growing poppies. Before long a flood of opium-based drugs was back on international markets. Prices fell, consumption increased, and local American street-gang violence grew. Truly wonderful result, don’t you think?
The Taliban is not and never has been a terrorist organization as it is widely misunderstood in the US.
It is simply one of the basic divisions of that society, as it were, Catholics versus Protestants. It is extremely old-fashioned and fundamentalist and unenlightened, but then so are a small host of clans or religious groups of every description in the world in many lands. You don’t invade people for that.
It is impossible to make them go away, unless of course you are prepared to slaughter people en masse.
The Northern Alliance – representing another basic tribal division in the society, it was an alliance formed long ago within the country to vie for power with the Taliban - that the US allied itself with in the original invasion, has always itself been an unattractive grouping too. It had some genuine monsters in it, including mass-murderer, General Dostum.
It never was the good guys versus the bad guys, a false idea that America’s government promoted. It always resembled a gigantic national feud between the Hatfields and McCoys in West Virginia and had nothing to do with issues Americans care about.
The Pentagon and CIA always like to promote simplistic explanations, providing sound-bite summaries for the nightly corporate news broadcasts, stuff for the soccer moms and others back home to accept readily.
In this case, it was the repression of women, something that in fact goes on still in Afghanistan as it does in every poor, rural place on earth, including Mexico, Brazil, India, Kuwait, Bangladesh, Indonesia, the Philippines, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Oman, Turkey, and scores of other places.
No, the reality of the great swirling mass of humanity in no way resembles, or relates to, life in Celebration, Florida, or in Ozzie and Harriet’s fantasy suburb of the 1950s. The very essence of propaganda is to fix on a truth and treat it as though it were only a truth for the place you are discussing.
America’s phony efforts even on that front achieved nothing – the Burka is still worn widely and little girls are still not educated and people remain dirt-poor – but, while all the bloody stuff was going on, talk about it put America on the side of the angels in the eyes of the uninformed. The many, many killings of women and children by Americans received little press.
But the US didn't care, just so that it could defeat the Taliban without sending in vast numbers of its own troops. Using air power with massive bombing above with local forces doing most of the fighting below, followed by a limited number of Americans to occupy, to torture, and to terrorize into submission
This is a poor, backward country, and its customs and social structures do not resemble Celebration, Florida, and they will not do so for centuries.
To expect that bombing and occupation would alter that is the very essence of arrogance and the blind brutality we see from America’s establishment today, working away in a half-dozen places to achieve nothing beyond death and dominance. It is a one-way trip to nowhere.
Afghanistan’s people pretty much mind their business, so why on earth the US thinks it must dominate and decide who governs is beyond me, and it is beyond reason.
It’s just part of a rather sick tendency we see in America’s Deep State, the need to control everyone.
JOHN CHUCKMAN COMMENT: BANK OF ENGLAND GOVERNOR SAYS BREXIT WILL MAKE BRITAIN WORSE OFF - YES BUT THE MATTER IS MORE COMPLEX THAN THAT STATEMENT IMPLIES
COMMENT POSTED TO AN ARTICLE IN THE INDEPENDENT
“Brexit will make Britain worse off, Bank of England Governor Mark Carney confirms”
Seems very unusual to hear such a direct, politically-touchy statement from a central bank head.
Of course, he is right, but in a narrow sense.
Brexit has social and political implications, not just economic.
In a way, what many said by their vote was that they were willing to pay a certain economic cost in exchange for non-monetary changes they favor.
Sunday, June 18, 2017
JOHN CHUCKMAN COMMENT: REVIEW OF A NEW BOOK CALLED THE PLOT TO SCAPEGOAT RUSSIA RAISES THOUGHTS ON THE COMPLEX AND WIDESPREAD EFFORTS OF AMERICA'S DEEP STATE - A VAST TERMITE COLONY DESTROYING POLITICAL LEGITIMACY
COMMENT POSTED TO AN ARTICLE IN RUSSIA INSIDER
“New Book About the Deep State Plot to Demonize Russia
With a strong endorsement from Oliver Stone The Plot to Scapegoat Russia”
I am always glad for new sources which confirm old beliefs, but, I must say, there is little in this review that is new to informed and critically-minded observers.
Concepts such as “humanitarian intervention” are, and have long been, of the same nature as the White Helmets in Syria, totally phony.
The US never intervenes militarily where genuine humanitarian catastrophes occur. It did not intervene in Rwanda while it understood perfectly what was happening at a very early stage. It did not in Cambodia. It did not in Indonesia.
Indeed, in the slaughters of Indonesia, after the fall of Sukarno, the State Department was on the phone submitting lists of "communists" to the new government who were best added to the hundreds of thousands getting their throats cut and having their bodies thrown into rivers.
The US militarily intervenes only where it has a geo-political goal or interest.
As far as phony front outfits like America’s Democracy Now! there are many of them in the US.
Despite formal rules against being involved in local affairs, the CIA has long used the method of such media to "get out its messages." In the 1960s, good magazines like Saturday Review were secretly supported by CIA.
What do formal rules mean to an organization where it is accepted that lying under oath is just fine? CIA Director Helms himself established that fact for us back in the 1960s.
The Internet has many seemingly liberal or independent sites which I believe are in fact CIA zombies. In some cases, they may know it. In other cases, they may not. The CIA works both ways, just as it has paid its own employees and paid outside assets, the assets not always being aware of where their money comes from.
You can take a good guess at such sites just by the nature of the material they favor, the way they treat things, and the rules they establish.
Mother Jones magazine seems certainly one of these. Daily Kos is another. Pacific News Network is yet another. Vanity Fair belongs on the list I believe.
The American book publishing industry is filled with the same effort. Some publishing houses go along to get along, some are unwitting tools, and some are themselves just covert operations.
Remember, publishing in a country like the United States is today a very difficult business, fraught with risk. How nice to have a source of funds, whether understood or not, streaming in to steady your business.
In return, as a publisher, you still get to do some of what you always wanted to do, but perhaps not all of it, but there are a few things, here and there, that you must do or you will lose your important covert sponsor.
There has been an entire industry in advocacy books about such crucial matters as the Kennedy Assassination, the downing of TWA Flight 800, and 9/11. The manipulative nature of a good many of the books is apparent. This CIA effort, by the way, plays the game from both sides.
Books trying to reestablish the authority of the pathetic Warren Report by one route or another - authors like Gerald Posner, Priscilla Johnson, Vincent Bugliosi, Edward Epstein - clearly have CIA influence embedded one way or another into their books on the Kennedy Assassination, directly or indirectly. You cannot read their books without sensing it at many little points, as in what things are emphasized and what things are glossed over or as in over-hyped claims about the limited evidence we have.
The Agency also takes another route of attack. It actually arranges to have books attacking the Warren Commission published, but ones which are so poorly researched or written that they effectively discredit genuine critics by “the company they keep.”
It was a publicist at the Agency, decades ago, who came up with the derogatory term, "conspiracy theorist" to be used against genuine critics, and the term remains in wide use today.
America’s corporate press, always doggedly loyal to Deep State interests, keeps the term alive by regular use in articles and editorials still. Its longevity is proof of how effective such media manipulation can be.
American society is deeply penetrated by the CIA and its sister agencies, and it has been since long before the Snowden revelations about the NSA snooping on everyone.
The truth is that it was a terrible mistake to create something like CIA, and the very President who signed the legislation, Harry Truman, said so.
You simply cannot create a huge, well-financed agency whose accountability is close to non-existent, charge it with the execution of countless dirty tricks and manipulations abroad, allow its members to lie under oath, and keep financing its cancerous growth, without creating a monster, a monster which attacks decency in your society, destroys ethical considerations in your international dealings, and a monster which erodes the foundations of democratic government.
Saturday, June 17, 2017
JOHN CHUCKMAN COMMENT: PUTTING THE THREAT OF TERROR INTO PROPER PERSPECTIVE WITH THE DAY-IN AND DAY-OUT REALITIES OF AMERICA'S OWN BRUTAL VIOLENCE - GOVERNMENT EXPLOITS FEAR TO SUPPRESS FREEDOM
COMMENT POSTED TO AN ARTICLE IN SPUTNIK
'We're Up for Several More Years of Increased Jihadi Terror in Europe'
The phrase "lone wolf" is one of the phoniest terms in use at present. It is, quite simply, a propaganda term.
It is intended to instill fear and to suggest penetration into a society of dark and sinister forces, allowing governments in turn to take extraordinary measures in surveillance and control of things like the Internet.
What we indeed have in places like London is young men desperately trying to get some kind of vengeance for what Britain has helped do to some Arabic countries, but the total of such incidents remains extremely small and warrants no extraordinary measures.
We all know that young men, even without a deep grievance, can sometimes be troublesome and violent.
In America, for example, we see case after case of young men attacking groups and people. The incidents are common, but they are not, and quite rightly so, labeled as terror.
Here is a list of recent multiple killings in the U.S., going back only two years. The list is only a tiny portion of total murders or total homicides in America:
San Francisco UPS shooting with 3 killed and 2 injured
Pennsylvania supermarket shooting and killing of 3
Orlando Florida shooting and killing of 5
Ohio nursing home shooting and killing of 3
Fresno downtown shooting and killing of 3
Fort Lauderdale Airport shooting with 5 killed and 6 injured
Burlington Washington mall shooting and killing of 5
Baton Rouge police shooting with 3 killed and 2 injured
Dallas police shooting with 5 killed and 11 injured
Orlando Florida nightclub shooting with 49 killed and 53 injured
Kansas Excel Industry shooting with 3 killed and 14 injured
Kalamazoo Michigan shooting and killing 6
San Bernardino shooting with 14 killed and 21 injured
Colorado Springs Planned Parenthood shooting with 3 killed and 9 injured
Roseburg Oregon Community College shooting with 9 killed and 9 injured
Chattanooga military recruitment shooting with 5 killed and 2 injured
Charleston Church shooting with 9 killed and 1 injured
Menasha Wisconsin Bridge shooting with 3 killed and 1 injured
Here are a few additional interesting statistics on American day-in, day-out violence:
In just one city, the city of Chicago during 2016, 717 were shot and killed, 3662 were shot and wounded, total homicides, including without guns, were 803. Many large American cities have comparable violence.
The Guardian newspaper in Britain tracked killings by police in the U.S. for a year, such killings being very under-reported in American national crime stats: 1,146 were killed by their own police in just one year, 2015. That number compares to 55 killed in total by British police over a period of 24 years.
In another kind of under-reported death, The Huffington Post gathered statistics of more than 800 people who died in jails and police lockups in the year 2015-16.
For 2015, 38,300 people were killed on American highways. Of course, the overwhelming majority of such deaths is completely avoidable, but we do not see authorities taking measures in law to any serious extent to improve the rules and their enforcement.
Only in the area of “terror” do we see a relatively small number of deaths bringing demands for measures resembling a police state.
I think in all serious matters, where the press screams and where new demands are made by government, it is extremely important for people to have some perspective.
Death from genuine terror remains, despite all the noise, something about as common as slipping on a banana peel and dying.
JOHN CHUCKMAN COMMENT: OLIVER STONE'S ASSERTION THAT ISRAEL MEDDLES IN AMERICAN ELECTIONS FAR MORE THAN RUSSIA DOES - HE IS RIGHT OF COURSE - JUST A FEW FACTS
COMMENT POSTED TO AN ARTICLE IN RUSSIA INSIDER
Oliver Stone: 'Israel Meddled Far More in US Election Than Russia'
This isn't even an opinion.
It is a plain, hard fact.
But it is America's own politicians who inflict this on their country.
America's elections are about money, private money, and the politicians have always refused to change the reality.
The American Supreme Court even confirmed it further with a ruling that "Money is free speech." It reminds one of many previous, laughable decisions by that august body of political appointees who count angels on the head of a pin. I think especially of the contemptible Dred Scot decision just before the American Civil War.
Well, the Israel Lobby is simply the best organized and financed in using the terrible rules set by America's own government.
Every Congressman is afraid to oppose the Israel Lobby's demands. They are fearful that the campaign money and good press that could be theirs will go to an opponent instead.
They are also fearful of being labeled as anti-Semitic, a favorite cheap trick of the Israel Lobby, used regularly against people who are simply honest opponents of a dishonest government.
Moreover, Israel practically trains American legislators from the start, and it is freely allowed to do so. Every freshman Congressman following an election is offered a free trip to Israel for a combination of holiday and indoctrination. Woe betide the freshman who turns the trip down.
The intimate access Israel has, owing to its efforts and those of its Lobby, to high figures in the US is unlike anything any other nation enjoys, including far larger and more important ones. It is an embarrassing and shameful situation for a great country to find itself in.
There are many other connections and avenues of influence, secret and otherwise, including the intimate liaison permitted to many Israeli agencies, such as the military and intelligence, with American counterparts. This goes beyond the cooperation extended to many allies and into something more resembling a constant espionage and internal-influence exercise.
In a few strategic cases, Israel seems to have compromised key American government figures, too. The case of Linsey Graham is notable.
Graham is known to be a closet gay, a fact which does not go down well in the conservative part of the country he represents.
There is no other reasonable explanation for this man's almost insane and continuous looking-out for the interests of Israel. It’s almost as though he were an Ambassador from that country.
JOHN CHUCKMAN COMMENT: CNN AND THE WORST KIND OF JOURNALISM - ITS RECORD - THE KIND OF DIRTY MERCENARY WAR AMERICA WAGES IN SYRIA - COMPLETE WITH PHONY NGOs TO STAGE VIDEOS FOR CNN TO SHOW
COMMENT POSTED TO AN ARTICLE IN SPUTNIK
“CNN Should Publicly Admit Error in 'Symbol of Aleppo Suffering' Story - Moscow”
If CNN had to apologize for all of its truly lousy reporting, that's all it would be doing.
The network, of course, has long functioned as an outlet for CIA or Pentagon or State Department propaganda. People who are “literate” in public affairs and unbiassed observers recognize the fact instantaneously.
But what many people, who perhaps do not pay close attention, do not realize is that CNN's standards in its regular news reportage have always been low to non-existent.
They not only do not check stories, they fill airtime with ridiculous stuff that is an insult to journalism and even intelligence.
My favorite example - from years ago, since I stopped being able to even watch the silly network - was during the Atlanta Olympic bombing of 1996.
As readers may know, the idiots at the FBI suspected a completely innocent man, a man who actually proved something of a minor hero, Richard Jewell, a security guard, of being responsible. (It, in fact, later proved to have been the work of an anti-abortion “Christian” fundamentalist terrorist, the kind of native terror that became quite common at that time in the United States).
CNN spent hours on this mindless story, for which there was not a shred of evidence, reporting every rumor or suspicion and a lot of complete nonsense.
I recall one of CNN’s "reporters" trying to ambush Mr. Jewell for an interview once, standing outside his home, complete with cameraman and sound equipment, until Jewell left for work.
Mr. Jewell, when he appeared, quite appropriately, just walked to his car without a word to the reporter trying to jam a microphone into his face, and proceeded calmly to drive away.
The CNN idea of journalism was just to have the camera focus on his car until it disappeared. Then the embarrassed reporter made some gestures and mumbled some rubbish into his microphone.
That was CNN’s idea of journalism, and indeed it was the kind of stuff they have repeated countless times. The operating principle of CNN is simply to fill airtime so that it can sell advertising. No serious effort is made to ascertain the legitimacy of pertinence of what they fill the airtime with.
The fact is, sadly, that there are millions of people who will just watch a television screen for a time with “stuff going on” – almost like young kids watching cheap cartoons on Saturday mornings - and CNN has become a large corporation based upon that founding assumption.
Readers may enjoy:
NOTE TO READERS: The CNN story on the pitiful-looking, dusty-faced Aleppo boy in a van has now been proved a completely staged event. The boy has been found alive and well with family. The van incident, intended as a propaganda effort aimed against Russia for helping destroy America's terrorists controlling Aleppo, Syria, was staged by the White Helmets, the same phony NGO outfit that staged and filmed a poison gas attack just before Trump hurled a fleet of cruise missiles at Syrian forces who had nothing to do with it. The work of the White Helmets is a very good symbol for the kind of war America fights in Syria. A war by paid mercenary thugs who pretend to be what they are not. The White Helmets are a branch of one of these gangs of thugs and regularly receive substantial sums to stage video images which are promptly shown on by outfits like CNN.
JOHN CHUCKMAN COMMENT: AMERICA'S VAST PROGRAM FOR "DISAPPEARING" PEOPLE IS FOUND MOSTLY UNREPORTED - A COUNTRY WHOSE LEADERS HAVE NO ETHICS NO MORALS AND NO PRINCIPLES AND WHOSE PEOPLE SEEM NOT TO CARE
COMMENT POSTED TO AN ARTICLE ON SPUTNIK
“US 'Consistently and Excessively' Secret About Drones: 80% of Strikes Unreported”
Whether secret or not, the entire program is a disgrace.
This is industrial-scale extrajudicial killing, no different in any respect to the work of the old Argentine Junta who used to make people "disappear."
And Trump has added even more shame to the hellish scheme by telling the psychopaths at the CIA they can freely choose whom to kill without consulting him.
Knowing this, one can only reflect with despair on idiot Nikki Haley’s abuse of Abraham Lincoln’s words, “last best hope on earth” in describing today’s America at the UN.
It is all an unbelievable nightmare, and it shows how low the principles of America's elites have sunk.
It should serve as a warning to us all of what a dangerous thing America has become.
It recognizes no laws outside of its own, dishonors many treaties, bullies everyone and every organization with whom it has contact, overthrows governments it dislikes including democratic ones, supports dictators and absolute monarchs and unprincipled thieves, hires mercenary thugs to terrorize countries as in Syria, high-handedly declares who is fit to govern and who is not in many lands, and freely kills whomever it chooses.
In short, America’s elites do virtually everything that the words of America’s founding documents say is wrong and virtually everything that individual Americans would not tolerate being done to them.
It is hard to see how it can sink any lower in ethics, morals, or principles, except by increasing even further the amount of its killing and mayhem – a distinct possibility I should think.
JOHN CHUCKMAN COMMENT: "TERROR-SUPPORTING" QATAR SUDDENLY SOLD $12 BILLION WORTH OF FIGHTER JETS - TRUMP'S BIZARRE AND DANGEROUS PERFORMANCE IN FOREIGN AFFAIRS - HE SHOULD RESIGN
COMMENT POSTED TO AN ARTICLE IN ZERO HEDGE
Pentagon Agrees To Sell $12 Billion In F-15s To Qatar
Honest to God, it just does not come more confused than this with Qatar. First, they are supporting terror, and, shortly after, they are being sold a new arsenal.
Trump is making a mess out of everything he touches. He has the Midas touch in reverse.
I wish it weren't so, but it is.
At some point, now, I believe he should resign. He has been reduced to looking clownish in all his efforts in foreign affairs, arms flapping in all directions and saying utterly foolish things. He has settled nothing anywhere.
And I say that as one of those who had hoped that this seeming maverick might have been able to do some good in a world that has suffered 15 years of Neocon War insanity. Two million killed, at least, by the US. But Trump only adds threats to Iran, bombing to Syria, troops to Afghanistan, creates a mess in Qatar, and sells terrible new weapons to the Saudi thugs with which to kill.
It must be clear to many that he is incapable, that he does not possess the strength and independence of mind some believed he had, that he has completely given in to the Deep State when it attacked him.
The CIA now decides whom it will kill thanks to Trump, and we only just learned that the Pentagon has been given authority to put whatever troop level it chooses into Afghanistan, Afghanistan being a war that should never have been started.
That invasion was a pointless act of vengeance against a government that was absolutely not responsible for 9/11. All it has achieved is to flood the world with cheap hard drugs. That's why black gangs in Chicago and other cities are killing each other in the hundreds.
Talk about terror! This is completely self-inflicted.
Trump’s dark Pentagon appointment is mumbling about not winning in Afghanistan, but from the beginning, the intelligent question that has always applied to the invasion and has never been answered is, “Win what?”
So, Trump tells the Pentagon it can decide how many more troops to send. Brilliant!
Tuesday, June 13, 2017
JOHN CHUCKMAN COMMENT: IRAN'S SUPREME LEADER SAYS AMERICA CREATED ISIS (DAESH) AND THAT ITS WAR ON TERRORISTS IS A FRAUD - JUST ONE MORE VOICE ADDED TO MANY EXPRESSING THIS TRUTH
COMMENT POSTED TO AN ARTICLE IN THE INDEPENDENT
US ‘created Isis’ and its war on the terrorists is 'a lie', says Iran's Supreme Leader
Sorry, but the leader of Iran is not alone in saying this.
Many informed and thoughtful people understand this truth.
Russia's leaders certainly do.
The President of Syria certainly does.
Many independent journalists - for example, Sy Hersh - have touched on this.
Various references in leaked State Department documents support this, including a reference by that good old people-loving humanist, Hillary Clinton, about "needing to bring down Syria for Israel."
It is just a fact that you may easily find photos of John McCain - that well-connected establishment death-dealer and meddler into foreign affairs - with ISIS's mysterious leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi.
And, of course, the pattern has historical precedents. The US helped create the bin Laden and his movement for meddling in Afghanistan in the 1980s.
The US dumped all kinds of mercenary "terrorists" into Libya to bring it down into its present chaos.
And, of course, it did the same to the people of Syria.
JOHN CHUCKMAN COMMENT: THE MYTH THAT ANOTHER LABOUR PARTY LEADER WOULD HAVE DONE BETTER THAN JEREMY CORBYN
COMMENT POSTED TO AN ARTICLE BY ASHLEY COWBURN IN THE INDEPENDENT
"It's time to dispel the myth that another Labour leader could have done better than Jeremy Corbyn"
About as obvious as saying the sun will rise tomorrow.
This begs a serious question about the months-long campaign against Corbyn - a campaign inspired by Tony "the ripper" Blair and joined in by The Independent, The Guardian, and many others, including unfair members of Britain's Israel Lobby.
The man was literally hammered with various accusations from one week to the next.
The fact that he showed them all his splendid ability is very gratifying.
JOHN CHUCKMAN COMMENT: THE ROLE OF PRIVILEGE IN AMERICAN SOCIETY - IT IS NOTHING NEW FOR LAWS NOT TO BE APPLIED TO THOSE AT THE TOP - U.S. ESTABLISHMENT RESEMBLES FRENCH ARISTOCRACY IN 1750
COMMENT POSTED TO AN ARTICLE IN INVESTMENTWATCH
"Comey Shows Americans That Law Does Not Apply To The Elite"
Honestly, in what country has the writer been living?
You cannot observe American society for any time at all without taking this as a truth, as a building block for what we see.
You see, it has always been so where great wealth or inordinate influence exist, and America has done nothing but follow the historical pattern.
Extremely wealthy and influential people in America today are just about as insulated from the law as the great dukes of France were in, say, 1750.
For example, just look at the actual life of George Bush Jr and reflect upon the fact that, despite a record from hell, including breaking a number of laws that would send others to jail, he was made president.
A few old parchment documents with high-sounding phrases, ignored countless times in America's history, are no defense against this reality for all human societies.
If a society wants it to be otherwise, it must constantly strive to make it so.
And America has done anything but.
JOHN CHUCKMAN COMMENT: POLITICAL CORRECTNESS AS A HOPELESS TERM TO EXPLAIN ANYTHING - ESPECIALLY POLITICS AND JEREMY CORBYN
COMMENT POSTED TO AN ARTICLE BY SLAVOJ ZIZEK IN THE INDEPENDENT
The secret to Corbyn's success was rejecting PC culture as much as he rejected rabble-rousing populism
"PC culture" is a vapid term.
It explains nothing, being as empty as the phenomenon it tries naming.
Corbyn simply was honest, something almost none of our politicians are.
He was brave, having faced down an ugly mob of shouters and accusers.
And he is seen as decent, very much not the case for the nasty woman now trying to save her job by an alliance with a party from hell.
JOHN CHUCKMAN COMMENT: IRISH PRIME MINISTER WARNS BRITAIN'S THERESA MAY ABOUT DOING A DEAL WITH BELFAST'S DEMOCRATIC UNIONIST PARTY - MORE PROOF OF MAY'S GENUINE INCOMPETENCE
COMMENT POSTED TO AN ARTICLE IN THE INDEPENDENT
"Ireland's prime minister warns Theresa May over deal with DUP"
Serious stuff, indeed, Mr. Prime Minister.
And knowing what Ian Paisley, founder of the party, represented in his day, I cannot help but share your fears.
He was a man filled to the top with hate.
What do the words of the Irish Prime Minister really tell us?
That Theresa May is a dangerous political incompetent, as bad or worse than David Cameron, for even trying to do this as a means of recovering from the results of her earlier big blunder, calling a snap election.
Funny, I hear echoes of her "reassurances" some time back as she tried to distinguish her position from Jeremy Corbyn’s on the use of nuclear weapons, something about her readiness to press the button sending a Trident missile to incinerate a 100,000 people if need be.
Very reassuring indeed in light of her blunder after blunder.
JOHN CHUCKMAN COMMENT: ON HILLARY STILL HAVING HER SECURITY CLEARANCE A YEAR AFTER THE FBI SAID SHE WAS CARELESS - THE REAL USE OF SECURITY SECRECY AND CLEARANCES
COMMENT POSTED TO AN ARTICLE IN GATEWAY PUNDIT
“Hillary STILL HAS SECURITY CLEARANCE One Year After FBI Concluded She Was Reckless With Secrets”
Security and secrecy and clearances are effectively a big game and an information resource for America’s privileged people.
They have remarkably little to do with genuine security or national interests, a fact which is implicit in the way they are so often used and in the immense overuse of classification.
Their main function is to hide what is happening from the country’s citizens, and that very much includes the many embarrassing blunders and criminal acts of senior government officials and agencies.
Those making the blunders are given access to the record to inform and protect themselves from difficulties which arise afterwards, to prepare legal responses, to prepare talking points, etc. The only time they are shut off from access is when a big turnaround in politics makes it expedient to do so.
The clearances are a bit like keys to a private club, distributed according to status and need-to-know for their various functionaries.
And does anyone doubt that Hillary remains a member of America’s High Brahmin Caste?
JOHN CHUCKMAN COMMENT: BRITISH PRESS ATTACKS ON LABOUR PARTY'S JEREMY CORBYN AS A TERROR APOLOGIST - BUT THOSE ATTACKS WERE ONLY THE LATEST AND NOT THE WORST IN A LONG SERIES OF VICIOUS ATTACKS
COMMENT POSTED TO AN ARTICLE BY FINIAN CUNNINGHAM IN SPUTNIK
“Britain's Real Terror Apologist”
Good summary piece.
In discussing the press attacks on Corbyn about being a "terrorist sympathizer," the author neglects an even more insidious, unethical set of attacks - those against non-existent anti-Semitism.
These latter attacks went on for months, starting not long after he was first chosen as leader.
The barrage included innuendo or suggestions or outright charges from Tony Blair, The Guardian (which sunk especially low on the subject), The Independent, and someone even dragged in the leader of Israel's Labour Party who wrote a self-serving, dishonest, nasty public letter to Corbyn, much featured in the press.
It was a virtual repeat of the performance of old drunken American Senator, Joe McCarthy, in the 1950s, standing in front of cameras, holding a fistful of papers he never showed anyone, bellowing about how they contained the names of a couple of hundred “communists” in the State Department. At that time, you almost could not come up with a more inflammatory accusation than calling someone communist.
The ethics in the effort against Corbyn were exactly the same as those of McCarthy - who was in fact a hopeless drunk trying to fire up a failing political career when he first hit upon his paranoid, dangerous, and immoral game of innuendo and name-calling.
He, too, only succeeded for a while because other people in power were able to use him for their own dark purposes - especially that sicko, J. Edgar Hoover, notorious and utterly ruthless Director of the FBI.
The attacks on Corbyn morphed and changed to take several different shapes, but they continued for months. He was forced to have another leadership contest in the Party - owing to the filthy influence of Tony Blair and his acolytes - again with the press, especially The Guardian, giving great exposure to those running against him, especially Owen Smith, a man who never stopped talking while saying almost nothing.
But Corbyn won again, and it was a great victory for this decent man. The press and opponent politicians shut-up for a while but ended up starting new attacks, such as he “just could not win.” There were considerable human and financial resources put into these efforts. Tony Blair’s ugly blood-stained face appeared periodically in a press still loyal to him, and it was very satisfying in the end to see that smug murderer and profiteer ignored.
In politics in the Western World, good guys rarely win, and that is because, in all cases from Parliaments to Congress, we have election machinery – everything from rules, voting procedures, and gerrymandering – bent against the emergence of leaders who really do represent the country’s people or who oppose special interests or foreign influence such as that of the United States upon national politics.
This bent political machinery is reinforced by the corrosive influence of money in politics, especially in the United States where it is totally dominant, but also in Britain and certainly in France, which sometimes appears as corrupt as the United States in its politics.
Through all these means, the establishment and special interests do keep a firm hand on the tiller of so-called democratic politics. Many ordinary people are quite unaware of how limited the reality of their democracy is. David Cameron, for example ruled a country and made big decisions, including life-and-death ones abroad, based on the support of about 35% of the people. Some democracy.
But sometimes circumstances conspire so that the good guys win, do manage to cut through all the barriers and limits, and this British election was one of those times.
Jeremy Corbyn is simply the most decent man leading a major party in Europe today, and I think the people perceived that as he worked tirelessly on the hustings, despite all the previous attacks. In similar fashion, many saw Theresa May for what she is, a rather ineffectual person and a rather nasty one, much resembling David Cameron in drag.
A couple more leaders of Corbyn’s caliber, and Europe could emerge as the great, independent force in the world that it has the capacity to be, rather than something resembling a perpetually-kowtowing house servant of America’s ugly imperial policies. Were that new reality to emerge, I and many others would definitely support the EU rather than efforts like Brexit.
JOHN CHUCKMAN COMMENT: EX-CIA MAN SAYS ISRAEL NOT WORTH ONE AMERICAN LIFE OR DOLLAR - HE'S RIGHT BUT THE SIMPLE FACT IS AMERICANS ARE GIVEN NO CHOICE
COMMENT POSTED TO AN ARTICLE IN INVESTMENTWATCH
“I don’t think Israel is worth one American life or one American dollar.” -ex-CIA Michael Scheuer
And neither likely do most Americans.
But do they have any choice?
The policies are pushed down their throats by their own politicians.
America's elected government simply does not reflect the views of the majority on a great many matters, especially on matters of war and peace and justice.
And, now, look at Trump actually serving those special interests even more ferociously than Obama did.
Everything from his weapons sale to Saudi Arabia (a covert ally of Israel's and fighting wars Israel wants), his new threats against Iran which does nothing to us, his topping-up Israel huge annual welfare subsidy, his continued needless violence in Syria (which is an Israel-motivated project), the treatment of Qatar, the insane speeches of Nikki Haley in the UN, and on and on.
The people have no say in these matters, and their representatives - the powerful ones in the Senate, the legislative body with real power - are literally all bought-and-paid-for.
JOHN CHUCKMAN COMMENT: POLITICAL ANALYSIS BY A BRITISH COLUMNIST AS MEANINGLESS FARCE - OBSERVATION ON WHAT PEOPLE IN FACT VOTE FOR
COMMENT POSTED TO AN ARTICLE BY JOHN RENTOUL IN THE INDEPENDENT
“Jeremy Corbyn is a right-wing Red Tory who offers no alternative to the Government”
And, John Rentoul, if anyone really wants a political columnist with something to say, he or she will have to read someone else.
Truly, this man dreams up words to fill space.
I won't, but I easily could, write an essay about how naive and lacking in political understanding this piece is.
I'll only say this. In real politics, most voters do not vote for programs or platforms. To think that they do is so outdated, it is Victorian. It is actually childish.
Any modern election is about whom you can trust with the nation's future, at least in the short term.
In American elections, they spend so much money - Hillary spent about $ 1,200,000,000 - that all sense of a candidate is fogged over with pre-packaged imagery and stage sets and fake claims and idiotic sound bites - all making it very hard to even know the people.
America has been said to have the best government money can buy, and that is completely accurate.
At least in Britain, it still means something to be out on the hustings.
I'm sure people can sense Corbyn is about as decent and honest as national politicians go. Not perfect. Not telling us his every thought. But decent.
JOHN CHUCKMAN COMMENT: MARTIAL LAW IN BRITAIN? - THE COMMON ATTRIBUTION OF TERROR TO THE WRONG CAUSE - MISUSE OF THE TERM GLOBALISM - NEOCONS AND MIDEAST WARS
EXPANSION OF A COMMENT POSTED TO AN ARTICLE IN ZERO HEDGE
“Operation Temperer - U.K. Will Likely Institute Martial Law Measures Within A Year”
This is all quite depressing, of course.
But many Americans lose sight of the essential truth in these matters, and when you do that your analysis becomes inaccurate and your politics become empty.
I discount the commonly-cited notion of "globalists." Although certainly there are people who fit that term, they are most certainly not the people creating the serious problems we see in the world. To my mind, that idea as an explanation for events borders on fantasy, and it indeed effectively assists those truly responsible.
What I very much do believe is that since 9/11 (and we will likely never know whether that event in itself was a kind of “FDR and Pearl Harbor” set-up intended to get things kicked off), the US has been on a violent rampage to re-shape part of the world's geography.
All these "terror incidents" are blowback from that rampage, all of them, and I’m sure even leaders such as Theresa May know that, but they will not say so because they have fully embraced, under duress or otherwise, America’s cause in its rampage.
The same rampage is the source of all of the refugee problems plaguing Europe and making Americans fearful. It is a self-inflicted wound, and one, by the way, for which America in the most cowardly fashion takes no responsibility, always pretending to be a victim of something horrible “out there” called Islamic extremism, a vague expression which explains nothing but does give people a name to clutch.
After all, the history of Christianity is likely the bloodiest in all of human history (everything from the Crusades and Holy Inquisition to vast religious wars and massacres and world wars and the Holocaust to the gifts of Stalin, Hitler, and Mussolini – each of those gentlemen in fact raised as Christians). The Hebrew scriptures are about little else but bloodshed and hatreds, and contemporary, re-created Israel sits on other peoples’ land, people who are held without rights or recourse of any kind. So, calling Muslims especially violent is pretty ridiculous.
The American establishment – its crinkly-faced, lifetime Senators, the CIA, the Pentagon, major special interest lobbies, and America’s wealthy elite whom they all serve – decided quite a few years ago to flex its muscles even more in world affairs.
The reasons were multiple, one being dark fears about the relative decline of America as shifts in the world’s economy continue. It is a valid fear, but the truth is there is nothing to be done for it. Countries like China and Russia and India are now inevitably headed for their place in the sun.
Neither wars nor Trump’s ‘great again” rhetoric can alter that reality, any more than you can stop the forces of evolution. Still, the response by America’s establishment is one of lashing out, intimidating, and making demands here and there because it is a powerful entity and it is not ready to accept its relative decline. It is an angry bull elephant lunging at anything it approaches.
That set of behaviors is almost diametrically opposed to the behaviors of “globalists,” who, at least as most would define the term, tend to be rather idealistic, liberal-minded, perhaps even somewhat unrealistic people, advocates of international trade and standards and agreements. Such people are not friendly to wars and oppression and, in fact, represent almost the opposite camp to the American establishment’s pushing aggression and imperial dominance.
Tied in with the American establishment’s fears is the rise of Neocon influence in America. The Neocons basically have been preaching for years: “Go ahead, America, you have the power- military, financial, and diplomatic, so use it to get just what you want. “
It is a somewhat soft version of fascism, if you will, and it has very much taken hold, notions growing like dragons’ teeth to shape American policy towards aggression. The great war correspondent and observer of history, William Shirer, said way back during the Nazi era, which he uniquely documented, that America’s temperament could allow it easily to go fascist. He knew what he was talking about, and it has done so.
I use the word “fascism” advisedly since one of the key aspects of 1930’s fascism was lots of swagger and militarism and readiness to use aggression to get what you want. If that doesn’t characterize how America behaves today on the world stage, I just don’t know what does.
Always behind the preaching of the Neocons is the mostly unspoken agenda of a powerful and aggressive United States being good for Israel and the hell with anyone else, especially anyone who even somewhat disagrees. This interest is, of course, diametrically opposed to the long-term interests of the American people, and for many reasons, especially the fact that Israel is a pariah state in violation of countless UN resolutions, international conventions and treaties.
Israel arouses great anger across the region which is why Israel so opposes democratic governments and likes dealing with absolute monarchs (Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Bahrain, Oman, etc.), unelected governments (“President” Mahmoud Abbas), and juntas (Egypt). America’s committing both to supporting these and to attacking others, for Israel’s benefit, puts it on the wrong side of history and commits it to continued aggression to enforce its will imposed on many millions of people.
It is easy to see the marriage of convenience between Neocon advocacy and American policy in the Mideast Wars, all deliberately started by America, although often given barely-plausible cover stories such as describing induced and subsidized terror as local revolts and always given lots of empty, windy rhetoric about fighting terror and getting the bad guys. America has been both creating a cordon sanitaire around Israel and gaining new authority in this large and important part of the world.
Despite all the empty words of people like Nikki Haley, in the end, if you start wars and bomb people, you are the aggressor, and aggression has consequences.
Every bit of blowback from America’s efforts becomes another excuse for further reductions of freedom and rights on the home front. After all, the very governments who created the whole mess – America and its close allies – have amply demonstrated that they are comfortable with seriously restricting freedoms. Did you ever hear of aggressors who have much respect for such things? The police/military mentality is never friendly to rights and freedoms. Never.
JOHN CHUCKMAN COMMENT: WESTERN FOREIGN POLICY AND TERROR - SUPPORTING A FRIEND OR ALLY WHEN HE IS BURNING DOWN PEOPLE'S HOMES - THERESA MAY AND AMERICA
COMMENT POSTED TO AN ARTICLE IN THE INDEPENDENT
Majority of British voters agree with Corbyn's claim UK foreign policy increases risk of terrorism
Interventions in Iraq, Afghanistan and Libya have made atrocities on UK soil more likely, majority of public believe in poll
It is actually stunning that more people do not understand this relationship between America's wars and terror.
But I'm glad that there is at least one major politician who does understand it, although, of course, he does not emphasize that they are America's wars, but they are, and foolish leaders like Blair, Cameron, May, Hollande, and Merkel have just accepted them and played the loyal-ally role they are expected by Washington to play, even when America is doing completely the wrong thing.
Supporting your friend (or ally) should stop at the point when your friend proves to be a pyromaniac who goes out night after night, setting fires and killing innocent people.
But Europe's major leaders have stood quietly by while the arson and killing have continued for fifteen years. Indeed, British and French leaders have actively participated in bloody destructive activities such as Syria or Libya or Yemen.
They help bomb and they help kill, although covertly and while pretending to be fighting terror, but the people of the places, you can be sure, know the truth. Thus, the "terror" attacks in London and Paris.
America has aimed for 15 years to re-create the Middle East, and it has not been too selective about the methods used. At least 2 million people have died in the long, slow holocaust, and, of course, millions have been injured and made refugees.
Every leader such as Theresa May perfectly well knows these facts but pretends otherwise - thus, in effect, accepting the horrible blowback results against their own people.
Ms. May in fact helped create the terror events in London. M. Hollande did the same for Paris. And Ms. Merkel helped create the refugee stampede.
Of course, the massive refugee crisis which has almost destabilized Europe originates in the same wars.
But virtually every leader in Europe - and especially, Theresa May - Is afraid to say so and instead tell us tales that truly make no sense.
We do in fact live in a world where typical notions of what is going on are as fake and manufactured as the story of a television series.
Our press, overwhelmingly, supports the dishonest tales of governments who support the dishonest tales of America's power establishment.
Since only a minority of people question what they read and hear from the press, the whole business just keeps churning around like a load of wash in a washing machine.
You bomb people, you create dead and crippled victims, refugees trying to escape, and survivors, largely young men, who want justice for their losses, at least that most primitive form of justice we call vengeance.
JOHN CHUCKMAN COMMENT: WESTERN PRESS COVERAGE OF RUSSIA - THE TRUTH IS AMERICA'S ESTABLISHMENT SEES RUSSIA THE WAY ROME SAW CARTHAGE
COMMENT POSTED TO AN ARTICLE IN RINF
Megyn Kelly Brings Out ‘Fiery’ In Putin As He Slams Western Media Coverage Of Russia
The American establishment sees Russia in exactly the same way as Rome saw Carthage.
It is stupid, of course, but the members of the establishment - crinkly-faced Senators, the CIA, the Pentagon, and the American plutocracy they all represent - just cannot help themselves.
Russia is, of course, the only nation on earth that could quite literally obliterate the United States.
The fact is a good measure of the arrogance of America's ruling establishment, not being able to tolerate the existence of such a country, and of course they never stop trying to harass and interfere with Russia, as we see in everything from the coup in Ukraine to the Washington nonsense about Russia's interference in the America's election.
JOHN CHUCKMAN COMMENT: FANTASY NONSENSE ABOUT A LESS POWERFUL WASHINGTON FROM ALT-RIGHT TRUE BELIEVERS
COMMENT POSTED TO AN ARTICLE IN INVESTMENTWATCH
How Donald Trump’s Presidency Could Inadvertently Lead to a Far Less Powerful Washington D.C.
This is fantasy nonsense.
First, no powerful entity ever gives up power voluntarily. It just does not happen. Shifts in budget or staff size from one agency to another are not decreases in Washington's overall power.
Trump is increasing support for every genuine organization of power in Washington.
The Pentagon and the whole ugly gang of security services, 17 of them in the US.
I rarely quote Mao, but his "Power comes from the barrel of a gun" was an uncomfortable truth.
Smaller or decentralized agencies in general have very little to do with Washington's actual power.
Trump is also cutting off other influences which can soften or attenuate Washington's power, from support for the UN to various free-trade agreements.
Trump's net effect will be virtually the opposite of what this writer thinks.
JOHN CHUCKMAN COMMENT: ELECTRIC CARS - THEIR VERY SERIOUS SHORTCOMINGS EVEN TODAY - THEY CANNOT COMPARE TO HYDROCARBON- POWERED VEHICLES WITHOUT NEW TECHNOLOGY
COMMENT POSTED TO AN ARTICLE ON INVESTMENTWATCH
“Russian Oil Chief Says Tesla, Electric Cars Are Overrated”
We've had electric cars since the very early 1900s, and they never took hold except for some very special purposes.
The key problem is this: even today, there are no good batteries.
Not only is the huge battery for one of these cars very heavy - draining its capacity to perform and also wearing out tires and road surfaces faster (not exactly green, by the way) - but the charge held cannot in any way compare to the energy in a tank of gasoline or even diesel.
We just are not there technologically yet.
JOHN CHUCKMAN COMMENT: ISRAEL CONFIRMS ITS STATUS AS ONE OF THE WORLD'S MOST TWISTED PLACES - STEALING HOLY PLACES
COMMENT POSTED TO AN ARTICLE IN RINF
Israel Tells Palestinians: “Al-Aqsa Is No Longer Yours”
Nothing like using holy places for aggression, abuse, and as an object of theft, is there?
Sunday, May 28, 2017
JOHN CHUCKMAN COMMENT: AMERICA'S TOTAL POLITICAL PARALYSIS - BOTH PARTIES ARE SHIPWRECKS - POLITICS WITHOUT MEANING - BUT MAYBE THAT'S JUST WHAT THE UNELECTED GOVERNMENT WANTS - WAR LOOMS
COMMENT POSTED TO AN ARTICLE IN ZERO HEDGE
‘Hillary Clinton: "The Right Is Afraid Of Me Because I Don't Die" ‘
The woman has no shame.
And she likely has some cancer-like disease in whatever gland it is that is that controls human ambition.
And, yes, she is right, she doesn't die, much the same as a vampire.
You do not have to be a follower of Trump's to wince whenever you see this woman's photo or read more words from her, and the photos and words just keep coming, as though she were running for office, which virtually certainly she is.
The stories tell us that only a stake through the heart stops a vampire. It appears that idealistic young Seth Rich tried delivering one and failed, losing his life in the effort.
It all reminds me of what a terrible, ghastly situation the Democratic Party is in.
This couple from hell, the Clintons, America's version of the Borgias, just will not stop. They are out there prowling around, constantly making noises and false accusations – as about the Russians being responsible for her loss – and no thought is even given to the consequences of such dangerous accusations. All that matters is her winning, no matter how she does it.
They have controlled the Party for a very long time, courtesy mainly of their money connections, and they intend to keep going, and the Party is incapable of shaking them off. It is in the middle of a long nightmare in which a succubus has sunk claws into its back. It cannot even look for fresh talent because virtually all its chief operators are beholden to this relentless couple.
I am sure there are many decent Democrats, people like the late Seth Rich, who know what a poisonous legacy the Party is encumbered with, yet see no clear way around it.
The woman and the Party were responsible for their defeat, yet neither can admit it for even a moment.
Many knew she was a poisonous candidate last time, but seeing her try again? That must be hard to swallow.
Especially when you consider that Trump was in many ways a weak candidate himself. He is not a good public speaker, and many of his ideas are weak and not well-considered, yet he was able to win with her running.
Of course, Trump had a couple of good points in foreign affairs - points worth something for many - but he has abandoned those and effectively abandoned supporters who were deeply concerned on those issues. He is a dues-paying member of the blood-soaked imperial establishment now in good standing.
So, I suspect the Hillary crowd, like a school of piranha, smells blood in the water. Trump will be highly vulnerable next time with his terrible record now in domestic affairs and his now perhaps even more terrible record in foreign affairs.
He is a shipwreck waiting to be blown into shore, though I doubt anything like impeachment will be involved. That is a monumental political task no one really wants to undertake. No, he will die a quiet political death the next time out with a record of failures and disappointments and nothing fresh possible to offer.
He quite literally has nothing to offer the great mass of voters now.
We have the now pretty crummy-looking pair of Ivanka and her husband, Jared Kushner, whom we know now is a sleazy operator who tries pitching American citizenships to Asian investors in his family enterprises and who doesn’t keep good faith with his own employees, who embraces the bloody Netanyahu, and makes blunder after blunder. As for Ivanka, we thought she was pretty smart, but her total effect on her father has been disastrous. She is clearly less clever than we thought – God, look at who she married! This pair begins to rival the Clintons for putrescence. Who’d want them back?
We have health legislation that will deprive millions of coverage after all the blubbering against the failings of Obamacare, and there are failings indeed, but they won’t be repaired by Trump.
And we have torn-up trade treaties as a supposed route to increased American jobs, a poor strategy which could end up creating trade wars, not jobs.
And we have a pretty smarmy and confused set of policies around immigrants and refugees.
And then we can add increased military activity in Syria, Yemen, Iraq, and Afghanistan, still more provocation against Russia, new provocations against China, idiotic threats against Iran, vast weapons sales for one of the world's most backward governments, virtual compliance with all of Israel's tyrannical acts and threats, and it is hard to see how he could even begin building a new constituency.
JOHN CHUCKMAN COMMENT: AUTHORITIES TIPPED OFF NUMEROUS TIMES ABOUT MANCHESTER BOMBER - WHAT THIS EVENT REALLY TELLS US ABOUT POLICE AND THE MILITARY AND DEALING WITH VIOLENCE NOT JUST TERROR
COMMENT POSTED TO AN ARTICLE IN THE INDEPENDENT
“Salman Abedi wasn't a lone wolf – he was a known wolf, and the Muslim community tried to warn us about him
Our Prime Minister was Home Secretary and in charge of MI5 when they were tipped off about Abedi – do the victims’ families have a right to an explanation of why the warnings were not heard?’
Of course, you are right.
The case only proves how pointless the "war on terror" is. Indeed, that very name is more of a theatrical slogan than a meaningful policy. It has been so since the beginning.
We've had many such examples over the last fifteen years or so, and if you look to the general record of criminality, you see the same thing.
There is a long record of police failing to deal with child molesters.
A long record of failing to deal with serial killers.
And how about massive fraudsters whose activities continue for years?
The truth is most traditional police and military are totally inept at preventing crime, even of the worst kind.
The average force member is not a bright light, and they are trained to follow orders, not to work cleverly in investigation.
That is just a fact, not an accusation.
So, any policy relating to large, international matters which depends upon them is guaranteed to fail.
But all the noise around their presence serves both as reassurance to the public (or is thought to do so) and as a visible advertisement telling people your government is at work for you.
Armed police or troops always dumped into the streets after an event are actually a symbol of how ineffective these organizations are at preventing anything. They are always reactive, always after-the-fact, and pretty much useless.
Just look at the current situation in Chicago with black gangs killing each other at alarming rates. Do you think Chicago has no police? Police just cannot stop this kind of anarchy.
Useless unless you are prepared to create military government.
But even then, police and military fail unless they are ruthless towards everyone. There was no terror in a place like Saddam's Iraq or the old Soviet Union. And much the same for Crusader Fortress Israel.
Of course, the genuine root cause of virtually all contemporary terror is America's abusive rampage through the Middle East and the terrible, yet always tolerated, terrors of Israel against millions of people. The US and Israel generate millions of victims and waves of anger and despair. Immense amounts, yet politicians like May or Hollande or Cameron or Blair never speak one word to the matter.
And that very rampage and organized oppression have been happily supported by the British and French governments.
Saturday, May 27, 2017
JOHN CHUCKMAN COMMENT: AMERICA CREATES A PROBLEM IN EUROPE THEN IMPOSES ITS SERVICES AND DEMANDS BEING PAID FOR DOING SO - FORGOTTEN ARE 1775 AND BUNKER HILL AS AMERICA BECOMES THE NEW HESSIANS
COMMENT POSTED TO AN ARTICLE IN SPUTNIK
"NATO Expansion Technique: First Create a Problem, Then Impose Your Services"
Europe's leaders are truly hopeless if they accept these new demands for billions of dollars.
You know, one of the proximate causes of the American Revolt, 1775, against Great Britain was when the British sent troops to Boston and demanded that they be quartered in people's homes. That led to the first conflicts at places like Lexington and Concord and Bunker Hill.
Today, the US, effectively through NATO, occupies Europe, and now it wants the Europeans to pay for their own occupation.
This demand, of course, closely resembles the British demand to the people of Boston of about two hundred and forty years ago.
Well, we all know where that led.
My God, the United States is truly the world’s greatest, unapologetic hypocrite.
I’m just waiting for Nikki Haley - who is given to blurting out clichés from American history for the benefit of the other, unenlightened, 95% of humanity - to offer something from events in Boston. Maybe, “Don’t shoot until you see the whites of their eyes”?
Somehow, I doubt she will, but it is certain that the more things change, the more they are the same.
JOHN CHUCKMAN COMMENT: DIA CHIEF ASSERTS NORTH KOREAN MISSILE STRIKE ON AMERICAN MAINLAND IS INEVITABLE - IT'S REALLY CALLED TELLING OFFICIALS WHAT THEY WANT TO HEAR SO YOU'LL KEEP YOUR JOB
COMMENT POSTED TO AN ARTICLE IN THE INDEPENDENT
“North Korea nuclear missile strike on US mainland is 'inevitable', says Defence intelligence chief”
Simply the statement of an idiot.
We have no basis for believing that, and this silly man has no basis for saying it, other than hoping to please his audience and keep his job.
Indeed, North Korea has a solid basis for feeling it might be the target of an American strike, a first strike.
The US, many will not realize, in the past made detailed plans for a massive first strike on the USSR in Kennedy's day. The Pentagon had it planned to the last detail.
It also made such plans for Mao's China.
And, please, for those who have not seen this horror, here is what the US did to North Korea in the Korean War:
JOHN CHUCKMAN COMMENT: JAMES WATSON WILLIAM SHOCKLEY AND THE OLD IQ DEBATE - CALLING SOMEONE RACIST OR ANOTHER NAME WITHOUT BASIS IS AN AMERICAN TRADITION - TRUMP AND LINCOLN EXPERIENCED IT - WHAT GENUINE PREJUDICE IS
COMMENT POSTED TO AN ARTICLE IN ZERO HEDGE
‘Discoverer Of DNA's Double-Helix Banned From U of I For "Failing Test Of Decency" ‘
Well, this is an old controversy.
I don't know that I've ever read a genuinely racist comment from James Watson, but he has made some extremely controversial comments, comments which anger many people, black people especially.
But saying something which angers some groups is not the same thing as being racist.
Racism is a kind of prejudice, and all prejudice is ignorance and superstition, whether religious or racial or political prejudices.
The opposite of prejudice is science, a method for discovering facts.
James Watson is criticized for exactly the same kind of statements made by William Shockley, another Nobel winner who helped discover the transistor.
Yet both these men read the literature of intelligence and its variations between groups, a literature informed by literally millions of IQ tests over decades, and drawn their conclusions from that. You may not like that, but it cannot accurately be called prejudice.
That literature of the distribution of intelligence is not a gutter or scurrilous literature, although, it arouses intense angers and controversies. It includes some pretty capable investigators and authors, such as Arthur Jensen, and their work is there to be scrutinized and criticized. It is not hidden away like secret nonsense or mumbo-jumbo.
I do not think that can fairly be called racist.
It could conceivably be incorrect, but it would need to be proven incorrect, and, so far as I am aware, it has not been proved incorrect, only discounted by social attitudes.
In general, that literature says Ashkenazi Jews and Asians have the highest average IQs, with Caucasian-type people second, and black people last. I stress that those data divisions are not just arbitrarily set by prejudiced views. Quite the opposite, they literally fall out of an immense body of data.
If we choose to ignore the data – as by saying the tests yielding the data were invalid or inaccurate measurements in some way, quite a common, though unproven, response by critics - we may examine instead some genuine intellectual successes in the world and see how they compare to the test results.
In the people who build businesses, the people who excel at science and math, and the people who invent complex new things both in technology and art - we do tend to see the same general groupings seen in the test data. That is a highly suggestive fact.
I don’t know, but I do know Americans are extremely ready to call people names like “racist,” and they do that at the drop of a hat when they do not like someone’s views. We see the same phenomenon at work regularly in America with other name-calling, as when people are called misogynists or anti-Semites or any other “-ist” or “-ite” you care to mention.
The current President of the United States – whether you like him or not, and I do not – has been at the receiving end of a storm of exactly such abusive name-calling, none of it with any basis in fact.
It does seem to be an American tradition, part, I think, of what critic Robert Hughes called America’s “culture of complaint.” Remember, in his day, that now most sainted of all American presidents, Abraham Lincoln, was often called “an obscene ape.”
When someone stops analyzing and criticizing facts and starts calling names, you can be sure, ipso facto, that you are dealing with another form of prejudice in the people calling the names, a genuine form of prejudice, and the very opposite of science, having nothing to do with facts.