Just yesterday 46 new fires ignited on this island. (Vancouver Island, BC, Canada)
We have up to three weeks of haze from smoke from these fires. And the fires from California, Portugal, Spain, etc.
The world is on fire people!
I must say you have to read the book. Methinks he is on to something. I bet ya that if you read the book you will never eat meat again. 5 cents bet.
Europeans are told America is religious, but “church going” Americans too often exhibit an undercurrent of hate mongering and hypocrisy that is impossible to not recognize, except among themselves.
Similarly, an education in history or sociology in America is akin to studying science fiction as fact.
Economics, as taught at America’s top business schools, is more fiction than fact, more fake than fundamentals.
Many, too many, feel America’s love affair with prevarication and fakery is new-found, a thing of recent times, from the continual lies and gaffs of Trump to the bumbling idiocy of his predecessor in outright ignorance, George W. Bush.
At its heart, America is a fake nation with fake institutions, fake religions, a fake government and fake people. Anyone who comes to America notes it. Tocqueville, the author, in his first commentary on America, “Democracy in America,” began chronicling America’s descent into “hokeydom” in 1831.
America is great because she is good. If America ceases to be good, America will cease to be great.
The American Republic will endure until the day Congress discovers that it can bribe the public with the public’s money.
Americans are so enamored of equality that they would rather be equal in slavery than unequal in freedom.
There are many men of principle in both parties in America, but there is no party of principle.
The surface of American society is covered with a layer of democratic paint, but from time to time one can see the old aristocratic colours breaking through.
There is hardly a political question in the United States which does not sooner or later turn into a judicial one.
In the United States, the majority undertakes to supply a multitude of ready-made opinions for the use of individuals, who are thus relieved from the necessity of forming opinions of their own.
I know of no country in which there is so little independence of mind and real freedom of discussion as in America.
The Americans combine the notions of religion and liberty so intimately in their minds, that it is impossible to make them conceive of one without the other. (Tocqueville)
There was a time when a version of Tocqueville, albeit one deeply censored, was still taught in schools. His books were never assigned, never discussed, not even for history majors in universities, only covered in deeply sanitized lectures by academic hacks grasping at tenured positions.
We might also cover Charles Beard’s An Economic Interpretation of the Constitution (Columbia University Press 1935) which debunks that document so many of us swore to protect and defend as a useless rag penned by counter-revolutionary forces intent on handing power to Britain’s banks while starving out America’s military veterans and small farmers.
Beard, once America’s most prominent historian, isn’t taught anymore either. His works were the basis for all legal education in the US. They have been in the dustbin for decades, next to Tocqueville.
Revisionists, the most aggressive and realistic of which are mostly called conspiracy theorists today, are too often a lazy lot, shy of scholarship and bereft of the discipline needed to make one’s mark in history.
Ah, but there’s the rub, history now is fake, laundered, rewritten, fabricated from fake narrative with fake characters and fake struggles. One of the driest reads of all time was John Kennedy’s Profiles in Courage, the necessary scholarly work needed by a young presidential candidate to prove his metal. Yet it’s subject matter, heroes unseen and unappreciated, is more important today than ever before.
It was Kennedy who recognized Robert Taft’s worth in trashing the fake Nuremberg trials. Taft, a senator from Ohio, gave up the probable presidency in 1948 because he opposed trying Nazis as war criminals based on fake laws passed ex post facto.
Another favorite of mine from Kennedy’s work is John Quincy Adams, recognized for breaking away from the Federalist Party, the real “muscle” behind the then and now present global banking cartel that sits at the heart of the “right” in Britain and the United States.
Most Americans themselves are aware of the heroes in their past. Few understand anything of Washington, what he risked, his tenacity in face of continual defeat and, to an extent, his failures as well. We don’t blame Washington, and well should not, for failing to recognize all that might transpire in his name. With Alexander Hamilton at his side, pecking away day after day, a voice for sloth, for theft, for immoderation, Washington was certainly poorly advised.
Key, in may respects, was America’s love affair for military veterans, not just leaders but men of physical courage as well. The military caste system and “push button warfare” of today has mitigated much of that tradition with so many of today’s “heroes” bespewn with fake medals for fake acts in fake wars for fake causes.
Men like Andrew Jackson, the glaring opposite of Donald Trump, fought their own battles, gun or sword, stood against political enemies based on values and didn’t hide behind fake “faith.” If Jackson carried a bible, he would have used it as a weapon to throw rather than as a shield to hide behind as so many do today.
There is a reason we began with Tocqueville. Russian’s are among the most religious people on earth despite their half century of communist rule. When a Russian worships, it isn’t for show. The same is true in Poland and much of Germany.
Few Americans are aware to what extent France, Italy and Spain have abandoned religion. Their history still recognizes how the Church aligned itself with monarchy and right-wing extremism, how it suppressed intellectuals, fostered ignorance and opposed social advancement.
Religion in America is, today, doing what religion in those nations had done for centuries, perhaps with fewer burned alive but, do note, there would not be millions locked away in America’s prisons without the self-righteous “hokeydom” of America’s religious fakes.
Similarly, without the failed institutions, failed and fake academia, a failed and faked military, a failed and fake government and, perhaps most glaring of all, the meteoric rise of custom designed fake information delivered by ubiquitous “devices, “would not represent the threat it does today.
There have always been Americans who have recognized, to an extent, what Tocqueville saw and expressed with such eloquence and clarity or, to a lesser extent, the rot at the center of America’s form of government outlined in Beard.
For the best of those, it brought about a search for heroes and saviors of a kind, a search that brought men like Franklin Roosevelt and John Kennedy to the forefront, men of grace and courage.
Gone awry, the same search, with ignorance and fear as guiding principles, brought us Eisenhower, Nixon, Reagan and the Bush-Trump duo, split by an anecdotal and truncated Obama presidency crippled by a Wall Street hijacked congress.
You see, with no functioning institutions, with no real “checks and balances” in a government long ago engineered for failure with the overthrow of the Articles of Confederation and the erasure of the Founding Father’s ideals, all that is left is “cult of personality” and dictatorship.
For those doubting such words, perhaps Jefferson’s might provide a reminder.
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.–That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, –That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.
Where Jefferson’s words from 1776, written for educated elites, some, perhaps many, who had suffered financially at the hands of British misgovernment, call for action and individual responsibility, today such words might well be a source of terror.
The America that abided slavery for the better part of a century might well abide the same. At her roots, America was never intended to be a colonial power or a global policeman. Tocqueville’s observations nearly two centuries ago made the reasons clear, that the fakery that had taken hold even then made real greatness would remain forever unachievable.
America is great because she is good. If America ceases to be good, America will cease to be great.
It has become easier to fake goodness, to simply invent it, “tweet” about it rather than do it. America smears, America blames, it points fingers, it accuses, it punishes, it bullies, and it has done so for most of its existence.
The moments of greatness have been fleeting, now not even a memory. Americans lie to themselves, to each other out of shame and humiliation.
Americans who believe in nothing, and this is the heart of America’s religion, delusion, disinformation, fakery and fraud, religions of intolerance and hate, or so it is for many millions, turn to their fake god to justify their fears and weaknesses.
This is why America is fake. America’s history is fake, its wars are fake, its “greatness” is fake because it is all based on self-deception, on beliefs chosen not from moral certainty and values but to serve the baser instincts, the worst of humanity, greed, lust and envy.
Gordon Duff is a Marine combat veteran of the Vietnam War that has worked on veterans and POW issues for decades and consulted with governments challenged by security issues. He’s a senior editor and chairman of the board of Veterans Today, especially for the online magazine “New Eastern Outlook.”
With permission from
August 15, 2018
Something happened recently that made me feel like a bit of an endangered species. A set of transnational internet companies, including Google, Facebook, Apple and several others, all synchronously removed content belonging to infowars.com, which is run by Alex Jones. Such synchronicity is a sure sign of conspiracy—something that Alex Jones harps on a lot.
I once appeared on a radio show run by Alex Jones, and he did manage to boil down what I had to say to “the USA is going to collapse like the USSR did,” which is pretty good, considering how poorly we managed to connect, having so little in common. He is a conservative and a libertarian whereas I think that conservatives don’t exist in the US. What have they “conserved” lately—other than the right to bear small arms? As far as libertarianism, I consider proper historical libertarianism as a strain of socialism while its American cooptation is just plain funny: these ones remain libertarian only until they need the services of an ambulance or a fire engine, at which point they turn socialist. To boot, American libertarians like Ayn Rand, who to me was a relentlessly bad writer full of faulty thinking. However, I find her useful as a litmus test for mediocre minds.
Moreover, Jones is political while I remain convinced that national politics in the US is a waste of time. It has been statistically proven that the US is not a democracy: popular will has precisely zero effect on public policy. It doesn’t matter who is president; the difference is a matter of style. Trump is a bull in a China shop while Clinton would have been a deer in the headlights. The result is the same: the US is bankrupt and its empire is over.
There is also the mismatch of genre between Jones and me. I am first of all an experimenter and an essayist, and to me personal experience and literary form are vitally important, while Jones is light on research and happy to work with hearsay, and is rather hackneyed and repetitive, but has the right instincts for a rabble-rouser. He harkens from a long American tradition of itinerant preachers spouting jeremiads, thumping the bible and hurling fire and brimstone. His content is secular, but his rhetorical techniques are revivalist. He is preachy, screechy and emotional. There is some carnival cryer in his cultural makeup as well, and he is not above peddling some survivalist/prepper snake oil
That said, we share certain important similarities. Neither of us is part of the official narrative that is endlessly being hammered home by US mass media with increasingly poor results. Thinking Americans are just not gullible enough any more. Jones has exploited this gullibility shortfall in the general public for all it’s worth by going after every conspiracy theory out there, while I am just like you—gullible. Sure, a few Arab tourists armed with box cutters destroyed three steel skyscrapers by flying two aluminum planes into them. Do your own math, but that’s just 2/3 of a plane per skyscraper—ought to be enough, right? Jet fuel, which burns at 800° to 1500°F, melted steel columns. (Steel melts at 2750°F.) Two aluminum cans packed with kerosene, meat and luggage destroyed three steel structures. I find this explanation perfectly satisfactory; do you? If you need to know more, it’s easy to find out, but don’t wait on me because, being so gullible, I am perfectly satisfied.
Jones and I are also different in that he is hugely popular whereas I am popular enough for me and generally lacking in worldly ambition. I enjoy writing, my readers enjoy what I write, and everyone is happy except the kids, because while I am writing I am not playing with them. But Jones is becoming huge—popular enough to displace mass media, which is continuously losing mind share. In part, that is its own fault: how long do they think they can they go on flogging the dead horses of “Russian collusion” and “Russian meddling” before people start shaking their heads and walking away? In part, the verbal diarrhea that we hear on CNN or read on nytimes.com is intended as a smokescreen because the truth has become toxic to the interests of those who are in charge mass media in the US. I will delve into this subject further on Thursday. The political decision to censor Jones was a sign of desperation: the verbal diarrhea is not working, and so it’s time for Plan B, which is simply to scream “Shut up!” as loudly as possible.
Due to his huge and burgeoning popularity (which these latest attacks on him have actually served to enhance) Jones is a huge target, whereas I am but a tiny one. Still, first they came for Alex Jones, and then they may very well come for me, and so the time to start paying attention and pushing back is now. These internet entities—Google, Facebook, Apple, Google Podcast, Spotify, iHeartRadio, MailChimp, Disqus, LinkedIn, Flickr, Pinterest and several others—have no more right to censor him than does your phone company to screen your calls for you or to determine whose number you should be allowed to dial. What was done to Jones was blatantly illegal under both US and international law, and while these companies don’t have much to fear in the US, where they are politically protected, they have a great deal more to fear internationally.
Morell: “We need to make the Russians pay a price in Syria.”
Rose: “We make them pay the price by killing Russians?”
The context and the facts are: the Russians were in Syria by official invitation from the internationally recognized Syrian government to defeat terrorists and foreign mercenaries and to reestablish Syria’s control over its sovereign territory. The US forces weren’t doing much of anything helpful in Syria, but whatever it was, it was illegal: they were an invading force. And here is Morrell proposing that we kill Russian troops who are fighting terrorists, just to send a message. If that’s not “inciting violence,” it is really difficult to imagine what would be. And yet a full two years after this outrage PBS remains on the air; what gives?
Spurious claims of “hate speech” and “inciting violence” aside, what happened is that an order to shut down Jones was issued from Washington, DC. In response an impressively large group of transnational internet companies saluted and marched off to carry out the order, thereby making it perfectly obvious who they work for. And that is likely to become a big problem for them.
First, these transnational companies are allowed to provide services around the world based on international law. Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights defends the right to freedom of opinion and expression: “Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers.” Jones should sue the US and the companies that censored him in the European Court of Human rights in Strasbourg, France and seek redress both against entities within the US government which issued the illegal order (to be ferreted out in the course of discovery) and against the transnational companies that carried it out.
Second, these transnational companies operate around the world based on local law which in many cases prevents them from acting as agents of foreign governments without first registering as such. If Google and Facebook execute orders issued by the US government, then they are acting not as businesses but as clandestine representatives of a foreign power. Being recognized as such would significantly curtail these companies’ international reach, growth potential and valuations.
And since Google, Facebook and Apple are public companies committed to the pursuit of shareholder value, it would be time for their shareholders to get involved and replace the management teams. After all, what would be more profitable for them: illegally conspiring with the US government while becoming pariahs and losing the world market, or scrupulously maintaining arm’s-length relationships with all governments while working to uphold international law? There is still the opportunity for them to defuse the whole situation: call it a mistake, restore the services, compensate Jones for lost revenue and promise to never do it again.
Reprinted with permission from Dmitry Orlov.
With permission from
Aug 15, 2018
The new round of sanctions this week unleashed by the United States on Russia has only one meaning: the US rulers want to crush Russia’s economy. By any definition, Washington is, in effect, declaring war on Russia.
The implemented economic measures may have a seemingly abstract or sterile quality about them: banning electronic exports to Russia, rattling financial markets, stock prices falling. But the material consequence is that American officials are intending to inflict physical damage on Russian society and Russian people.
It’s economic warfare on a sliding scale to military warfare, as the Prussian General Karl von Clausewitz would no doubt appreciate.
It seems all the more significant that this week also saw US internet services launching a major clampdown on anti-war websites, suggesting that the powers-that-be want to shut down any criticism or public awareness of their reckless warmongering.
What’s more, the latest round of US sanctions – there have been several previous rounds since the contrived Ukrainian conflict in 2014 – is based on nothing but wild, ridiculous speculation. That only adds insult upon injury.
Washington said the new proposed sanctions are due to its “determination” that the Russian state was responsible for an alleged chemical-weapon attack on a former double agent in England earlier this year.
The so-called Skripal affair involving Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia allegedly being poisoned by Russian agents using a deadly nerve agent is as yet an unproven conundrum. Some might even say “farce”.
No evidence has ever been presented by the British government to substantiate its sensational allegations against Moscow. Its claims that Russia was responsible for poisoning the Skripals rests entirely on dubious assertion and innuendo.
Now Washington is proposing sanctions based on a wholly unverified “determination” by the British – sanctions that are intended to crush the Russian economy. The proposed punitive measures go way beyond the usual freezing of assets pertaining to individuals. What Washington is moving to do is attack the core financial operation of the Russian economy.
No wonder that Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev issued a grave response to the latest American sanctions. He said they were comparable to “economic warfare”. Medvedev warned that Moscow would have to retaliate either “politically, economically or in some other way”. Medvedev’s tone was unmistakably one of alarm at the draconian, gratuitous and irrational nature of the US actions.
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov also expressed incredulity and apprehension over Washington’s conduct. He said that following the seemingly constructive summit between US President Donald Trump and Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin in Helsinki last month, this latest provocation from Washington makes the American side completely unpredictable.
The immediate sanctions coming into force are limited to banning exports of US electronics to Russia. But it’s what comes next that is perplexing. Washington is saying that if Russia does not give a “guarantee” on halting the future use of chemical weapons, and if Moscow does not allow international inspectors into its country to monitor alleged chemical weapons – then the second wave of sanctions will be applied within 90 days.
The subsequent round of sanctions include banning Russian state-owned airline, Aeroflot, from operating flights to the US. The impossibility of Russia meeting Washington’s absurd demands make the further application of sanctions inevitable.
A separate bill is passing through Congress which is planning to hit the Russian banking system, aimed at preventing international transactions.
Senators sponsoring that bill have labelled it “the sanctions bill from hell”. The title of the proposed legislation says it all: “Defending American Society From Russian Aggression Act”. Senators John McCain, Lindsey Graham, Robert Menendez and Ben Cardin, among other Russophobes who are pushing the bill, are explicit about the objective. They say the measures implemented will “crush the Kremlin”.
Tragically, the American people are being led to the abyss by politicians who are either ignorant, insane or prostitutes for war profits. Maybe even all of the above. Perversely, these politicians and their media clients accuse Russia of “acts of war” over fantastical claims about “election interference” when in reality it is they who are the ones committing acts of war against Russia.
The chances are paltry that President Trump will use his executive power to block the forthcoming sanctions. The political climate in the US among the intelligence agencies, lawmakers and the mainstream media has become saturated with anti-Russian hysteria. The US is an oligarchy in throes of insanity beyond democratic accountable to its people.
Already this week’s announcement of more offensive economic incursions on Russia sent the Russian economy plummeting. The ruble, bonds and stocks all nosedived. This is an attack on Russia’s vital interests. An economic Barbarossa.
No doubt part of the American calculation is to foment social discontent and discord towards the Putin government. It’s the same illegal playbook that the Americans are using with Iran, whose economy this week was also hit with draconian US sanctions.
If Russia’s economy has been thrown into turmoil already over the latest announced sanctions one can only imagine the damage inflicted when further American attacks are mounted on the fundamentals of Russia’s banking system and its freedom to trade with the rest of the world.
For Washington this seems to be open season for sanctions. It’s not just Russia and Iran on the receiving end. China, Canada, the European Union, Turkey, Venezuela, North Korea, among others, are also being battered with American economic warfare, either under the name of “sanctions” or indirectly using the rhetoric of “tariffs”.
For Russia’s part, it has shown immense forbearance up to now in tolerating Washington’s provocations and indeed aggression over numerous pretexts. From the conflict in Ukraine, to the alleged annexation of Crimea, to Moscow’s principled support for Syria being traduced as “supporting a dictator”, to alleged “meddling in US elections”, and much more, Russia has shown huge reserves of stoicism and self-discipline in tolerating what can only be called gratuitous American aggression.
At all times, Russia has maintained a dignified, unflappable posture in the face of American taunting and irrationality. Moscow perhaps thought that President Trump could bring some normality to bilateral relations. That’s turned out illusory.
But what happens now? When Washington has really gone too far. The US has taken its churlish conduct to a whole new dangerous level, by preparing to launch a full-on economic war on Russia’s vital interests.
The crazed American rulers are pushing the world to the brink by their belligerence.
Washington has heretofore given notice that it is not interested in diplomacy, dialogue, or negotiation. It only has one mode of conduct – war, war, war.