Saturday, June 25, 2016

"Hit The Road, (Union) Jack!" Sneer EU Big Shots

In the immediate wake of the vote by the majority of the British electorate two days ago to withdraw Britain from membership in the European Union superstate, the foreign ministers of the 6 founding members of the EU have publicly demanded that negotiations on Britain's exit must be concluded swiftly.

This sort of pulls the rug out from under what the British expected. They were operating on the assumption of a 2 year window during which the status quo would continue and negotiations could be conducted, as per EU treaty.

To be sure, there is some logic to the EU giving Britain the bum's rush. For one thing, it will greatly shorten the period of uncertainty if Britain's exit is expeditiously. effected. For another thing, the EU bosses are worried about their entire project falling to pieces. The sooner to get Britain out, they figure, the better in terms of shoring up the cohesion of the EU with the remaining 27 member nations.

Meanwhile, the "ratings agency" Moody's wasted no time downgrading Britain's sovereign credit rating to "negative outlook." That will result in the British government having to pay higher interest rates to borrow money from the private market. That in turn will create a ripple effect of higher interest rates throughout the British economy, which will slow economic activity. Thus the "experts" predictions of economic damage from Brexit will be effectuated by the same financial elites that made the prediction!

Moody's is treated as a credible, respectable organization, when in fact it is a criminal organization. It is one of the "rating" agencies that made possible the massive mortgage securities fraud that helped precipitate the global financial crisis beginning in 2008. Banks and a crime gang called Countrywide Financial headed by Angelo Mozilo gave mortgages to people they knew wouldn't be able to repay them, packaged the loans into things called Collateralized Debt Obligations, paid "rating" agencies like Moody's to rate them AAA (i.e. the safest investment grade) when in fact they were high-risk, and billions of dollars of this fraudulent garbage was then sold off to suckers. Moody's and its ilk are not just utterly lacking in ethics and integrity, they are racketeering organizations under U.S. criminal law, the RICO law (Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations). They should have no credibility whatsoever, but instead the establishment power structure, including "the" media, feign amnesia and report their "ratings" today as if they are coming from trustworthy, neutral, objective outfits. (The U.S. government radio propaganda network NPR, for example, has been informing its listeners hourly of Moody's downgrade of Britain, without mentioning any of this.)

The corrupt financial oligarchy that arrogantly rules the planet is now setting out to punish the British for voting "wrong" on Brexit. What is absent is a political party to oppose the coming assault. The Conservatives obviously are the party of the rich. Meanwhile Labour is no longer interested in actually fighting for the interests of the "lower" classes. A third party, the "Liberal Democrats," is completely opportunistic and unprincipled. Finally there is the United Kingdom Independence Party, UKIP, headed by former commodities trader Nigel Farage. Farage has stated his aims- double the prison population, increase military spending, cut social spending, and of course reduce immigration.

Given that London is an important base of global finance capital, there is no chance of a real defense against the punishment to be meted out for the "wrong" result in the referendum.

U.S. Emperor Obama had to pipe up again, repeating his threat that Britain will be at the "back of the line" for cutting a trade deal with the U.S, while also saying how much he values Britain. He's very skillful at talking out of both sides of his mouth simultaneously. And he reassuringly purred that the oh-so-special relationship with Britain is intact. (Translation: the U.S. will still be using Britain as its Bitch, much as Israel uses the U.S. as its.)

Are you enjoying the interesting times we're living in?

Friday, June 24, 2016

British People Vote To Leave EU: Elites In Shock: Financial Speculators Freak Out

Looks like the financial and political elites of Britain declared victory a tad too soon. After (over) confidently predicting a vote to reject "Brexit" (British exit) in the referendum to leave the European Union by 54% to 46%, the Leave side won instead, 52-48. Turnout was about 72%, quite high. (The latest wrong prediction was based on exit polling by those mega-parasites, hedge funds, leading to giddy rallies in global stock markets and the British currency, the pound sterling. Speculators placed bets presuming their desired outcome in the referendum. Oops!)

Apparently the sky has fallen on the establishment. On the United Kingdom Government's propaganda arm, the BBC, its "World Service" "presenters," as their on-air personnel are called, sounded like attendees as at a funeral, all doleful tones and sad head shakes. There was even talk of the UK breaking up, due to the fact that Scotland and Northern Ireland voted to remain in the EU.

"An astonishing victory," declared a BBC anchor. "A political earthquake" declared a co-anchor.

"This is a crushing, crushing day for Britain, and a terrible day for Europe," opined a British politician, saying "it's all over" for the EU and trade. Followed by shocked comments from various European pols. The "consensus," as the BBC presented it, was that the referendum result was a disaster.

Almost all the guests brought on were "Remain" supporters, consisting of politicians and media commentators. So the attendees at the funeral did most of the talking. I monitored the broadcast for about two hours. Almost no supporters of "Leave" were put on-air in that time. In other words, no attempt at balance. This "journalism" consisted of an establishment arm, the British Broadcasting Corporation, crying in its beer over what for that establishment is a "loss."

Some illustrative comments from the BBC "presenters" themselves:

"Whether the United Kingdom exists, five years from now is going to be the big question," (his emphasis).

"All this mayhem you're seeing in the market," exclaimed a female BBC-er.

"It's an absolutely extraordinary act of defiance" by the voters against the political and economic establishment, which all exhorted people on the "right" way to vote, and the disaster that would befall the country if they voted "wrong." That one by the BBC's Rob Watson.

Watson also claimed that the "Leave" side lacked a "plan." "A lot of people are going to say, "Krikey, have you got a plan?'"

Actually, they do. Within the two-year time frame where nothing with the EU changes, negotiate new trade arrangements. You know, trade has gone on for thousands of years.It wasn't necessary for countries to all belong to a superstate to trade. Nor do China and the U.S. belong to the EU, yet they do a lot of trade with it. Funny thing, these facts escape the professional Chicken Littles who are squawking that the sky is falling.

Another Chicken Little on BBC fretted, "This is a recipe for chaos."

Dry your tears, fellows. Even the powerful can't always get their way.

One revealing comment by a BBC co-anchor about the referendum underlined for me the undemocratic nature of the United Kingdom.

"Everyone's vote is equally weighted, and that's unusual in Britain."

Well, it is a KINGDOM, a monarchy, of course no longer an absolute one. Notice that for bourgeois types to truly "arrive" in Britain, one must be granted an aristocratic (feudal) title.

There was talk of "disintegration" of the EU by one Jackie Davis, "commentator on European affairs." "A domino effect," "great consternation" among the political bosses. "How do you show you are listening" to your disgruntled masses while making clear "but leaving is not an option," she says.

How indeed. How to herd the ignorant mass to follow behind their "leaders"? Where are Walter Lippmann and Edward Bernays now that you need them? (Lippmann was a theorist of manipulating the masses to obey their masters and keep their ignorant noses out of "decision-making." Among propagandist Bernays' crimes were getting women to smoke, and participating in the 1954 CIA coup in Guatemala, that established fascist death squad rule there.)

The BBC gang hauled on a German former EU commissioner, who promoted EU enlargement, and pestered him to say that the EU was going to fall apart, which he declined to do.

Various politicians and opinionators were all aflutter, calling the outcome "a political earthquake, a seismic event" and making similarly overwrought comments.

"A sad day for Europe" was the verdict of a Maltese politician, a member of the European Parliament, or MEP, invoking "our forefathers." (??? Yeah, I know, baffling.)

Hour after hour of worried hand-wringing and moaning.

If they keep this up, they're going to create a self-fulfilling prophecy.

And a Labour MP (Member of Parliament) (the Labour Party strongly backed staying in the EU, whereas the working classes, that Labour supposedly represents, voted to leave, as expected.) said "we have to listen carefully" (maybe you should have done that before!) because the vote was "a roar of defiance against Westminster elites" (like you!) symptomatic of "anger and fears that are out there." (Hey! She noticed!)  [1]  

As for the speculators who bet on winning the referendum by driving up stock prices and the pound, they immediately went into a tizzy. That global mob of parasitic speculators, aka "the markets," meaning stocks, bonds, currencies, futures, options, all that rot, were caught wrong-footed by the vote outcome. The Japanese futures market at one point tripped a "circuit breaker," meaning trading was halted when a limit to the size of allowable movements was reached.

The British currency, the pound sterling, immediately fell 10%, from a six-month high to a thirty year low. Which is a fine example of the fickleness, and fragility, of the financial markets, which holds the world in their thrall. An obvious, but taboo, thought on that is: the world economy, and the well-being of all of us, shouldn't be captive to the whims of a capricious, arbitrary, and very vulnerable financial superstructure of parasites sitting on top of the real economy. By "real," I mean the actual production of useful goods and services created by work.

It's a bit ironic that one of the leaders of the "Leave" camp, Nigel Farage, got rich as a financial speculator. He's the head of the United Kingdom Independence Party, UKIP. A fast and smooth talker, on the day of the referendum he predicted defeat for his side- not helpful while voting was going on! Now he's celebrating.

But let's put this in perspective. Financial markets are chronically subject to wild gyrations. They swing far in one direction, then back the other way when the stampeding herd of speculators reverses direction on a dime, and on a whim. It's classic manic-depressive behavior.

The pound, having risen to a 6-month high around $1.50 U.S. on premature euphoria by the speculator class, fell about 10% in an instant, to around $1.32. That may be a 30 year low, but it is well above the $1.04 it hit in 1986. And guess where it was in 1991? $2.00, practically double in value against the U.S. dollar. Since then it's zoomed up and down between around $1.38 and $2.10. (You can see a chart, here.) As for the Euro, the currency of the Eurozone, there was moaning on the BBC of it going near parity to the dollar, i.e. worth $1.00. To which I say, get some prspective. The Euro was launched n January 1999 at $1.20, and it promptly went into decline, bottoming out finally at 79 U.S. cents. ($0.79.) Then it began ascending, eventually topping out at $1.60. From there it went into a long decline, until seeming to find a floor just above one buck.

All of which is to say, when you let currency speculators determine exchange rates, there is no way to tell what the actual value of a currency is by its market price. [2]

Well, all those bets on stocks and the pound that went the wrong way are now being reversed in a panic. How far they go down, having gone up on a presumptuous false assumption of another bourgeois victory, will partly depend on the degree of "uncertainty." For as those who make excuses for the behavior of the financial markets whenever the speculators are having a tantrum are fond of saying, "Markets hate uncertainty."

But just who is exaggerating the degree of uncertainty here? The elites themselves. Getting themselves all frazzled. Will Scotland leave the UK now, since Scots voted to remain in the EU? Maybe. What if they do? They came close to voting to become independent (as they used to be) a few years back. You'll deal with it.

And by the way, that referendum isn't legally binding on the British government. So there may be some dirty double-cross in the future. (See Guardian, UK, "Is the EU referendum legally binding?," 23 June.)

A letter carrying the signatures of 84 Tory MPs (Members of Parliament of Cameron's own Conservative Party) who supported Brexit, or leaving the EU, stated that Cameron should stay on as PM regardless of the outcome of the referendum. This letter was made public just before the vote. Apparently it wasn't worth the paper it was written on, as Cameron has announced his resignation.

Let me offer a bit of farm wisdom for the elites: next time, don't count your chickens before they hatch.

There's the sky. See? It isn't falling.

1]  The BBC wasn't alone in wallowing in gloom over its dashed hopes. Take the organ of the "respectable" leftish edge of the British establishment, the Guardian newspaper. On the day of the vote it "helpfully" explained that only pathetic people who cling to the past would vote to leave the EU. Then when defeat dawned later the same day, one of its columnists informed that "Brexit earthquake has happened, and the rubble will take years to clear."

Sounds like a great business opportunity for entrepreneurs with bulldozers to rent!

"Last-minute EU referendum polls put remain support ahead," Guardian, 23 June 2016.

The propaganda line was the same on this side of the Atlantic. U.S. government radio propaganda network NPR started the morning with a gloomy take on the referendum outcome. Their Moscow correspondent reported how great it was for Russia, as Britain was the most vociferous voice for economic sanctions against Russia within the EU. (The UK acting as guard dog for U.S. "interests." An example of what Obama meant when he said the UK was more valuable to the U.S. within the EU than outside.) And NPR put on David Rennie, from the reactionary, overtly ideological British rag The Economist, to proclaim a "disaster" for the U.S., and attack the dishonesty of the Leave camp, asserting that they invented facts completely. (There were more than a few invented facts on Rennie's side.) The rest of the commanding peaks of U.S. corporate media see things the same way. 

2]  Interesting short article on how George Soros made a billion dollars attacking the British pound back in 1992, at the expense of the public treasury,  "No Mr. Soros, Brexit Will Not be a Black Friday for the British Pound," 22 June 2016.

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Financial Elites Celebrating Victory in Brexit Referendum Before the Votes Are Even Counted

It was still morning on the east coast of the United States- over an hour before noon, in fact- when word came over the radio today that stock markets and the British currency, the pound sterling, were rallying on expectations that the British public was voting for Britain to remain in the European Union in today's referendum. This giddy arrogance apparently was fueled in part by a private exit poll, asking voters how they voted.

Since the polls leading up the actual referendum were about even for quitting the EU (Brexit, British exit) or staying, I figured the vote would break for staying in, because people are innately conservative, by that I mean resistant to change. Change almost always feels riskier than the status quo, since one is exchanging the known for the unknown. Of course that's an illusion, since the future is unknown no matter what.

There was much demagogy by partisans on both sides, but mostly on the "stay in EU" side. British Prime Minister David "Big Toff" Cameron actually raised the specter of a third World War breaking out in Europe if Britain left the EU, a preposterous suggestion. (If anything forced the European nations to get along, it was being gripped in a U.S. headlock, economically and militarily, with the U.S.-controlled NATO military alliance putting them on the same side against the Soviet bloc, and now against Russia and as auxiliaries to U.S. military campaigns in the Middle East.) The most outré bit of fatuousness on the "leave" side came from former Tory mayor of London Boris "BoJo" Johnson, who compared EU unity to "unity" under Hitler and Napoleon, speciously equating military conquest and subjugation with a voluntary association.

The economic arguments were mostly overstated, on both sides, and avowed with far too much confidence. No one can really know with certainty what the economic future holds either way.

Nor was it a surprise that the "experts," who are virtually all in the pay of the financial or political elites, wouldn't sabotage their own careers by arguing for a vote to leave. I'm reminded of the saying, figures don't lie, but liars figure. I'm sure the calculations the gang of economic soothsayers came up with "proved" exactly what they determined in advance they were going to prove. Not worth the paper it's printed on.

Of course the Boss of the World, the current U.S. Emperor, Barack Obama, had to weigh in, with threats ("you won't get a trade deal with the U.S. for ten years if you drop out of the EU") and cajolings. He was followed by various U.S. imperialist poohbahs and financial elitists,uniform in their very self-serving opinion. (Opinion stated as objective fact, however.) I wrote previously on this topic,  [1]

Naturally the parasitic financial class, and large corporations, favor staying in the EU, because that is in their perceived economic interest. The Big Lie they always tell, whenever promoting their own self-interest (that is, always) is that what they want is good for everyone. Not only is this absurd on its face, but it has been disproved repeatedly by empirical evidence. Examples abound, such as the so-called "free trade agreements," which are actually corporate hegemony deals.

The populations of the "advanced" countries, as in the rest of the world, are divided into "winners" and "losers." The "winners" are people whose labor and skills (and sometimes connections) have significant value to capitalist employers. The rest of us are a dime a dozen, and can be had for a song.

In Britain, EU rules have obligated the country to allow hundreds of thousands of migrants from Eastern Europe to settle annually in Britain, driving down the "cost" of labor (wages) by increasing its supply. Working class objections to this are branded "racist," or at best xenophobic. The "lower" classes are not allowed to have their own economic interests, in bourgeois ideology, a totalitarian ideology that excludes all others from serious consideration. (The U.S. Government propaganda radio network NPR has gotten into the act, pushing the line that pro-Brexit supporters are "racist.") That somebody might want to limit immigrant without racism being the motive is excluded from consideration by the establishment media in both the U.S. and UK.

As for the economic arguments of the Brexit camp, these were dismissed by bludgeoning them with the deluge of propaganda issued by institutions of the financial oligarchy- all the usual suspects, such as the World Bank and International Monetary Fund (those two notorious enemies of the world's poor and indeed nascent middle classes to boot, collection agencies for foreign debt holders), various "consultancies" and crooked major accounting firms that were essential in bringing us the mortgage crisis in the U.S. by certifying that billions of dollars worth of garbage mortgage securities were solid gold. {Rated AAA when in fact they were junk, a massive fraud they got away with scot-free. Yet these organized gangs of liars are treated as if their credibility is solid. The past never happened!)

The fact is, the EU is an anti-democratic project of Euro-elites, slid down the throats of the peoples of Europe. Loss of national sovereignty means even less control over their own countries- and lives- than before for the people. And making a supra-nation out of dozens of disparate nationalities with distinct cultures, languages, traditions, and histories, seems like a fool's errand. But maybe the European bourgeoisies are fools. They are enough alike one another that they can unite just fine. Dragging those they rule along with them has proven a bit of a chore.

One more note on the economics. With the EU long in the doldrums, the systematic destruction of Greece, and Spain still in a depression, with a quarter of the workforce unemployed, it takes a damn lot of gall to claim that leaving the EU spells economic disaster, and staying in guarantees prosperity!

Well, as to the referendum...

It would have been a nice rebuke to the self-designated Masters of the Universe if they'd gotten their comeuppance just this one time. Maybe they will, if the vote doesn't turn out to go their way as they've already assumed.

1]  "Obama Threatens Britons Over Leaving the European Union," April 22; "Obama Gives Another Reason For Britons to Stay In the EU: The Better To Spy On Europeans," May 2; "France Kicks the Leg Out From Under One Obama 'Reason' For British Voters to Reject EU Exit," May 4.



[Boss Tweed, as illustrated by Thomas Nast. Then as now, political and economic power were cozy bedfellows.]

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Why Did the FBI Pass On Adding Another Scalp To Its "Terrorist Plot Smashed" Belt In The Case of Orlando Gay Nightclub Mass Murderer Omar Mateen?

Information has been dribbling out from the establishment media and from the FBI itself, including from the mouth of FBI secret police boss James Comey, over the days since the Sunday, June 12th 2 am massacre at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando, Florida, in which 49 mostly Latino gays were murdered and 53 wounded. What's somewhat curious now is the fact that the murderer Omar Mateen would have been a perfect target for the FBI's "create a terrorist plot we can foil" program. The FBI has a long-established pattern of luring hotheads, malcontents, poor criminals looking to score money, and the mentally ill into "terrorist conspiracies" created by "confidential informants" (in actuality agents provocateur), giving them fake explosives, and arresting them when they walk into the trap. Or even when they just sound like they're "planning" "terrorist acts." Then the FBI trumpets its feat, and a complicit media blares the story with top-level, luridly overheated coverage.

The story we've been given so far is that Mateen first came to the attention of the FBI in 2013, when they launched an investigation of him, which was subsequently closed. They investigated him a second time in 2014, again throwing the fish back into the pond instead of hooking it and reeling it in.

What we've been told so far is that Mateen was first investigated by the FBI in 2013 when co-workers (Mateen was a security guard at the time, of all things) called the FBI and reported that Mateen claimed to be a member of the Lebanese Shiite militia/political movement Hizbollah, a "terrorist" organization to the U.S. Government.  The FBI then interviewed Mateen, who told them he just said that out of anger at his co-workers, who he felt belittled him over his Muslim religion. (There's scant evidence Mateen was particularly religious.) Comey claims the FBI interviewed him three times in all, tailed him, tapped his phone calls, but after 10 months deemed him to not be a threat and closed the case. Then in early 2014, the FBI investigated him a second time over "links," as they say, to a suicide bomber in Syria, but inexplicably took him off their watch list soon after in May 2014.

In any event, one of these investigations included ten months of surveillance, and the assignment of an "informant" to surreptitiously record conversations with him. For unexplained reasons, this investigation was terminated without the usual procedure of setting up the target on some kind of conspiracy terrorism rap, which merely requires verbal agreement with the agent provocateur to carry out a fantasy attack, plus one overt act "in furtherance of the conspiracy," like duping the target into buying a spool of wire from a hardware store "to build a bomb." It's extremely easy to do this in the U.S. police state, and in fact they've been doing this sort of thing since at least the 19th century, when labor organizers, among others, were set up in  similar ways. They've got it down to a routine by now. Police manuals and training courses teach the ABCs of it.

You have to wonder, after TWICE homing in on Mateen, and in one instance spending ten months in a serious effort, they just abandoned the project. There was already a significant investment of time and energy expended, and Mateen was quite a violent person, as those who knew him are describing. His former wife had to be physically rescued from him when he virtually imprisoned her, forbade her to communicate with her family, and violently abused her. Former co-workers describe a volatile, angry man. And it turns out that he frequented the gay nightclub he attacked, Pulse, up to a dozen times. Patrons remember him as nursing drinks alone, and sometimes angrily lashing out. Seems like an easy lay-up shot for the FBI to lure such an alienated hothead into a "conspiracy."

You'd have thought the FBI would be rubbing their hands over finding a live one like Mateen. His co-workers said he claimed Hizbollah membership (his denials to the FBI could always be dismissed as self-serving and untrustworthy), so once lured into a "plot," he could be portrayed as a typical aspiring terrorist. Slam dunk for the FBI.

It's not as if the FBI feels sorry for the sad sacks they entrap and send to prison for decades. And as it turns out, Mateen really WAS a menace.

On the other hand, the FBI has been unrelenting in their surveillance, harassment, and sabotage of me for over 40 years. Numerous "black bag jobs," warrantless wiretaps and bugs, physical surveillance, the whole gamut of "counterintelligence" techniques, wherein they treat American dissidents like spies for a foreign power. In my case, without ever bringing charges, by the way. Make of that what you will. What I make of it is that persecuting people for ideological reasons is one of their top priorities, if not the top one.

Example of FBI psychological warfare. This wireless network appeared within range of my home starting last year and is on around the clock. And no, it isn't in a van. I had to waste my time checking out that possibility. Another chunk of my life stolen. Over the years. the stolen time (life) and money has been significant.

To the FBI, and to their local police accomplices in repression, anyone on the "left" is a "terrorist," including environmental activists and most recently the Occupy Movement.

Perhaps we'll get more clues in the coming days as to what happened in the Mateen matter. It will require careful parsing of FBI information/misinformation/disinformation, and sorting and weighing other information. Of course much that seems to be independent reporting in the media will be government planted, so care must be taken in evaluating it.

The FBI is in a somewhat delicate situation. They in effect let a dangerous man slip through their fingers twice. Recall that in the Boston Marathon bombing, they had interviewed the elder Tsarnaev brother, in fact apparently tried to recruit him as an "informant." They had also been warned by the Russians that he was a terrorist. The FBI claimed, variously, that they hadn't been warned, or there was "no evidence." (As if evidence was needed to imprisoned thousands after September 1, 2001, all around the U.S. in a mass roundup of Muslim men, and in Guantanamo Bay and various other military dungeons and CIA black sites. The suspicious minds of FBI secret police don't need evidence to decide someone is guilty. First the verdict, then the evidence.)

I suspect they'll take their usual tack when one of their glaring failures becomes public. They'll whine that their hands are tied by pesky rules and regulations and "rights," and they need still MORE power to get the job done. That's how they turn their blunders to their advantage. It happens over and over.

Meanwhile, the liberals and their auxiliaries on the "progressive left" are taking the opportunity to claim that the problem is that people can buy guns. Well, with 300 million guns in private hands, seems to me there are plenty of options for people to buy guns secondhand, or steal one. It seems odd that one man can shoot over a hundred people with semi-automatic weapons, then hold 30 hostage. Maybe the NRA has a point that if more citizens carried weapons, the net effect at least in mass shootings, would be fewer deaths in mass shooting situations. A hundred plus people being helpless against one vicious mad dog- there's something wrong here. And you'll never prevent a determined, vicious person from acquiring weapons.

By the way, Mateen had a 3-year-old son, who he was apparently willing to abandon in pursuit of his sick sanguinary goal. Mateen had a degree in "criminal justice technology" and was looking for a career in "law enforcement."

So that's one less killer-cop we have to worry about. There's your silver lining.

Omar Mateen, Myspace photo. Good riddance.

Mateen, age 29, the aspiring policeman.

Saturday, June 11, 2016

Hitler reacts to Hillary Clinton winning the Democratic nomination

On a lighter not: Hilarious parody video on youtube. See at

Personally I enjoyed it. Good medicine for me, as the secret police scum of the U.S. (FBI, CIA, and their local police stooges) has victimized me for over 40 years now and in some respects ruined my life.

Wednesday, June 08, 2016

Democratic Party Apparatchiks Insist on Going With Weaker Presidential Candidate

The AP (Associated Press) and NBC on June 6 declared Hillary Clinton the winner of the Democratic Party nomination for president. Totaling up the delegates she won in state primaries and caucuses and adding the over 500 unelected "superdelegates" (party poohbahs and assorted elected officials) backing her, they figured she has hit the magic number of a majority of delegates. Thus seeming to obviate the June 7 California, New Jersey, and other primaries. California being by far the most populous U.S. state, with the most delegates, and once again consigned to political irrelevancy.  [1]
Clinton's "victory" is actually not great news for the Democrats.

Senator Bernard Sanders has consistently polled stronger against Donald Trump than Hillary Clinton has. Yet the Party apparatus, controlled by the Clintons and their minions, is going with the weaker candidate, Hillary Clinton. (Perhaps we should refer to the Democratic Party as the "Clinton Machine." Even since 1992, that seems to be about what it is.)

In a New York Times/CBS News poll conducted in mid-May among 1,109 registered voters, Clinton beat Trump 47% to 41%, a lead of 6%. The poll has a margin of error of plus or minus 3%, which means the two candidates could actually be dead even. In any event, poll results are volatile, and public opinion is very fickle.  [2]

Sanders, on the other hand, leads Trump 51% to 38%, a pretty wide margin. (The New York Times calls that "a more hypothetical matchup," striving to be neutral, I suppose. Can't really fault that circumlocution.)

Sanders has consistently done better in polls against Trump than has Clinton for months now. So logically, the Democratic Party should at least be giving serious consideration to Sanders.
But the Democrats would probably rather LOSE the election than anoint Sanders as their standard-bearer.

It seems that their role as protectors of corporate hegemony trumps even their own partisan self-interest.

Sanders is hardly a radical. He calls himself a "democratic socialist," by which he apparently means New Deal Democrat or social democrat. That is, he's for a decent "safety net" for the population, rather than dog-eat-dog capitalism with most of the wealth going to a small class of plutocrats, as in late 19th century-early 20th century America (which the Republicans relentlessly push returning to, being an atavistic, revanchist party), or the system of crumbs doled out as pacifiers as favored by the current Democratic Party. The Republicans would eliminate the crumbs: the Democrats, under their last two presidents, Obama and Bill Clinton, have proved willing to "compromise" with the Republicans and reduce the amount of the crumbs. As in any compromise with fanatics, such compromises are only temporary, as the fanatics always come back and demand more until reaching their ultimate goal. Thus the "reasonable" sellouts eventually "compromise" their way to utter defeat. (THAT'S the "lesson of Munich"!)

Both of the hegemonic political parties are fronts for big capital interests. (The Libertarian Party are laissez-faire capitalists like the Republicans minus the crony capitalism of the Republicans, and lacking the taste for militarism and imperialism of the two ruling parties. The Republican Party in actual elections almost entirely sweeps up libertarian-minded voters.)

Both Clinton and Trump were viewed negatively by over 50% of the respondents to the poll. This too is consistent over time. If one were to included people not registered to vote in the tally, those negatives would probably be even higher. People who don't register are either thoroughly disgusted with the system, alienated from it, or indifferent. (Or just unmotivated.) So a high percentage of them have no use for "politicians" generally.

Now, it's true that Clinton got more votes in the Democratic primaries than Sanders. But in the general election in November, independents and Republicans will be voting too. The point is, Sanders does better than Clinton in that situation. Certainly among independents, and while only a relatively small percentage of Republicans would ordinarily vote for the Democratic presidential candidate, I suspect that more would go for Sanders than for Clinton. Because even though he calls himself a "democratic socialist," he acts like he wants to shake things up, something many Republicans want. Plus, he's a bit of a crotchety, ornery old coot, as are many Republicans. And they really hate Clinton. Then there's the fact that a significant number of Republicans can't abide Donald Trump. So I think it is clear that Sanders would actually be the better opponent against Trump.

Sanders is officially an "independent," while functioning as a "left wing" Democrat in the mold of a Dennis Kucinich. The Democrats usually have someone playing the role of "progressive" in order to continue to dupe progressives into voting for their corporate hegemonist and mass-murdering imperialist party. Sanders, like Kucinich, like indeed all of the handful of "progressive" Democrats in the Congress, is a lone wolf who refuses to even form a caucus of progressives in the Congress. That fact alone is enough to prove that these people aren't serious.  [3]

Sanders is functionally a Democrat in the Senate, as he votes their way almost always. In return, they reward Sanders with plum seats on various Senate committees. They also don't try to unseat him in Vermont elections.

But the Clintons are practitioners of cronyism on a vast scale, especially with their multi-billion dollar "foundation." They are a source of jobs and money. And they wired the Democratic Party power structure long ago. Hillary landed in New York State as a political carpetbagger and bumped aside other Democratic Party politicians who were "in line" to run for a Senate seat there. That's how she became a U.S. Senator. Then it was expected she would be the Party's presidential candidate in 2008, as if by some divine right of succession. The upstart hustler from Illinois, Barack Hussein Obama, yanked the rug out from under her with his slick moves, willingness to shamelessly lie about his future policies, and the technical brilliance of his campaign machinery. And oodles of money from Wall Street and other precincts of Big Capital (who obviously knew his "progressive" rhetoric was a sham to dupe the rubes- I mean, the citizens).

Ironically, Obama is very much like Hillary's husband, Bill Clinton. Both are very adept con artists, lacking any conscience, very good at lying (unlike Nixon) which they do convincingly. And both implemented very repressive policies domestically, and liberally killed people abroad.

Yeah, life is ironic sometimes.

1]  Here's one measure of how profoundly undemocratic the U.S. is- and this is never spoken of. The U.S. Senate, the upper chamber of the U.S. Congress, is immensely powerful. Because of its archaic and anti-democratic rules and procedures, a single Senator can block legislation.

Each of the 50 states elects 2 Senators to the Senate, for a total of 100. The state of California, as of July 2014, had a population as estimated by the U.S. Census Bureau of just shy of 39 million people. The 22 least populous states had a total population of about 39 and a half million. So Californians had two whole Senators to represent them in the U.S. Senate, while virtually the same number of people from elsewhere (mostly reactionary backwaters) had 44, close to half the entire Senate!

The least populous state, Wyoming, Dick Cheneyland, with a population barely over half a million, has the same number of Senators as California, which has 66 times Wyoming's population. A 66 to 1 ratio. 66 Californians equal 1 Wyoman in political weight.

Nice and democratic!

2]  "Republicans Want Their Party to Unify Behind Donald Trump, Poll Shows," New York Times, May 19, 2016.

3]  Ralph Nader has thoroughly exposed this sham. See for example this excerpt from Nader's appearance on Democracy Now!, May 18, 2015, when he was interviewed by Amy Goodman and Juan Gonzalez. Sanders snubbed him for 15 years, and 9 Congressional "progressives" completely ignored his pleas to them to form a united front to advance an agenda.

Here's the transcript of the relevant portion of the interview:

RALPH NADER: Bernie Sanders does not answer my calls. Fifteen years, he’s never answered a telephone call, never replied to a letter, never replied to a meeting that I wanted to go down and see him. I even had to write an article on this, called "Bernie, We Thought We Knew Ye!" One of the problems he’s going to face, other than his good graces in Vermont, is that he doesn’t have good political antennae. He doesn’t have political social graces. And he’s going to have to change that. A lot of his friends have told me that that’s a problem. But most progressive senators don’t really respond to any progressive group that tries to push him to do more than they want to do. I wrote nine letters to nine progressive senators, like Sherrod Brown, Elizabeth Warren, Bernie Sanders, and saying, "Look, you’re all lone rangers doing good things, but you’re going nowhere. So why don’t you get together into a caucus of nine, 10, 12 senators in the Senate and push a unified agenda on poverty, on labor, on the environment, on trade, on military policy? You might really get somewhere. At the least, you’ll raise these issues more prominently." Not a single response. Called up, said, "Would they respond?" Not a single response. I did finally have to go down and meet with the general counsel for Senator Warren. But by and large, that’s the problem with the left. That’s the problem of progressives. They don’t link with one another. You never see Heritage Foundation or Cato or all these right-wing groups tolerate members of Congress treating them that way who are supposed to be on their side.- "Ralph Nader on Bernie Sanders' Presidential Bid & His Unanswered Letters to the White House," Democracy Now!, May 18, 2015.]

The Unbearable Phoniness of Congressional "Progressives."

              Sheesh! Looks like my time in the limelight is just about up.

Clinton Victory "Historic"- For Those With No Knowledge of History

And for those who feign no knowledge of history. They're the ones brainwashing the ones who apparently have no actual knowledge.

That is, propagandists (aka "journalists") manipulate the masses. As usual.

What's the big "historic" event? A female is set to be nominated for president of the U.S. by one of the two oligarchic parties here.

Hillary Clinton won decisively in Democratic primaries in California and New Jersey June 7, trouncing Senator "Bernie" Sanders. (She also won in two insignificant states with small populations and thus few delegates.) She had already declared the winner of the Democratic nomination for president the day before by the AP and NBC, based on their calculation of her "superdelegate" (unelected party apparatchiks and officials) count of about 550. (These convention delegates aren't chosen by voters and are a Party elite.) Thus Clinton started the "race" with a huge head start over Sanders as almost all the superdelegates were in her bag before the first primary or caucus. (That's the best way to win a race. Start with a big head start.)

Her wins in the primaries of June 7th actually changed nothing, except to increase her lead. Sanders' position was already virtually hopeless, at least in terms of achieving the Democratic Party nomination for president. (His other game is to wield some influence on  the party's platform and policies. At the same time he seems to have a hard time letting go of the quixotic idea that Clinton's over half a thousand superdelegates could desert her and vote for him at the convention. The Clintons have a machine, the Party is wired.)

That didn't stop Clinton, her personal propaganda machine, and the bourgeois media in general (and not just in the U.S.!) from showering the world with the glad tidings that "history" had just been made.

You'd think they could at least wait until she actually gets elected president. (That seems to be something that "the" media is trying to effectuate, as U.S. elites are increasingly anxious at the prospect of one Donald John Trump becoming chief executive of U.S. imperialism. So the media is trying to head off that outcome by "going negative" on Trump and positive on Clinton. Excepting of course the GOP bullhorns of Rupert Murdoch, for now at least.)

So let's put this in perspective. What we see is this:

Hillary Clinton Campaign Declares She Made "History"- and the Propaganda System Agrees.

And what literally happened is this:

A person with a vagina is to be the chosen candidate for president from one of the two ruling U.S. parties instead of a person with a penis.

That has never happened before.

To which a person capable of logical thought would say:

So what?

What matters are the person's ideology, values, character, class interests, and political loyalties and commitments. And past history.

Hillary Clinton is nothing new under the sun in U.S. politics. Just as Barack Obama was nothing new. Both are completely committed to the existing power structure of the U.S., an economic system dominated by corporate oligarchy, a system of bourgeois class dictatorship, and imperialism that relentlessly seeks world domination, never ceasing for a second to increase its power globally. Clinton and the international assassin Kissinger share a very public, mutual admiration.

The pigmentation and genitalia of such agents of the system can hardly be very important.

But they are certainly made to seem important. And that has important uses politically and ideologically for the existing power system.

Blacks and women, who are mostly without power in the U.S. and considered inferior (although this is no longer overtly acknowledged) in general are alienated or skeptical of the system, and suffer more from it than white males. (Yes, these are sweeping generalizations with plenty of individual exceptions.) So having a black or female as the top symbol of the system gives them a sense of identification with it, renewing their loyalty to it and faith in its legitimacy and benigness.

Secondly, it draws them into the system as aspirants to power. Clinton explicitly hit this point in her victory speech after her primary wins, saying this proves there is nothing women can't do, there's no "limit" to how high they can rise. (Assuming you're willing to be evil and murderous, as Clinton is. She's an accomplice in protecting the murderous coup regime in Honduras, and shamelessly boasts of her role doing this in her last book.) [1]

By the way, one reason for the white male rage we see in America now (men that Trump, who projects as an angry white powerful male, appeals to) is their sense that they are not an overclass anymore. Now they have to be "equal" to women and blacks, not superior. The idiots lack any class consciousness as well as human consciousness.

As far as the World Historic Signicance of all this, if Clinton does become president, she'll be trailing Cleopatra VII by a mere 2,068 years as a female ruler. (And Cleopatra was a historical laggard compared to the pharaoh Hatshepsut, who came to power around 1473 BCE- 3,490 years ahead of Clinton, assuming she arrives at the White House next January. In fact, there were thirteen female pharaohs of Egypt.)

For that matter, Clinton is lagging behind numerous other female rulers throughout history.

Like Indira Gandhi of India in  1966. 51 years before Clinton will be sworn in as president in January 2017, if she wins. Or Margaret Thatcher of Britain in 1979, Queen Victoria in 1837,  Elizabeth I in 1558, Mary Tudor in 1553. (People the British media apparently never heard of, as they too jumped on the "historic" Clinton victory bandwagon.)  [2]

But maybe "history" is different from history.

Or maybe what they're all saying is that something only counts when the U.S. does it.

Obama's election was similarly hailed with hysterical hosannas as "historic." As if a brown-skinned man had never ruled before. (That too is very old hat, also going back thousands of years.)
Maybe what's "historic" is the part that always goes unmentioned. The U.S. is SO racist and SO sexist that it's a VERY BIG DEAL if the U.S. can finally vote for a black for a female in the twenty-first century.

Actually that's not very impressive.

I'll tell you one thing the U.S. is a leader in:


1]  Clinton, in her victory pep rally speech to her supporters, also shouted out a line that hit a populist note: "If we stand together we will rise together because we are stronger together." Yeah, we're all in this together! And she's just one of the gals. (Only one with a multi-billion dollar foundation funded by foreigners buying favors. But hey, play your cards right, and maybe one day you too can get paid a quarter million a pop to give speeches to finance capitalists.)

2]  The British government propaganda network BBC had it as Clinton's supporters "waved American flags as they celebrated an historic occasion," for example. The British "news"papers also seemed to be suffering from historical amnesia, invoking the "H" word, including the liberal Guardian. The Murdoch-owned Times of London labeled it "a historic night;" it was "Hillary Clinton's historic moment" in the rightwing Telegraph's headline, and the Mirror...nothing! Weird. Lots of lurid, half-baked crap of the type one sees in U.S. supermarket tabloids, however.

There's a slew of articles about the numerous women rulers throughout history and in various regions at Powerful Women Rulers Everyone Should Know.

The paid propaganda and the "news" propaganda are in agreement- this is "Historic!!"

 The Empress is Ready To Meet Her Destiny!

Hillary Clinton Campaign Declares She Made "History"- Propaganda System Agrees

Tuesday, June 07, 2016

Political Coquette Paul Ryan Stops Acting Coy, Surrenders to Trump

Republican Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives, Paul Ryan, got done playing hard-to-get. He finally swooned before the power of the Trump wave and endorsed Donald Trump.

Ryan, a Representative from Wisconsin, kept saying he really wanted to endorse the Big Egomaniac, if only the Volatile Narcissist would say the right words. Just reassure him.

But finally Ryan had to cave in, as the Republican cadres stampeded behind Trump. Ryan couldn't risk standing alone and isolated. (What, you were expecting maybe a Profile in Courage? A Man of Principle? Pshaw! This is a politician, baby!)

Trump didn't really say anything different. Just put on his Charm persona for a meeting with Ryan, Reince Priebus, he of the bizarre name (is that a type of amoeba or something?) the chairman of the Republican National Committee, played matchmaker and afterwards spread glad verbal tidings like he was strewing rose pedals.

Maybe Paul thought he could change the man after he married him. Married him politically, that is.

No sooner had Ryan let Trump politically deflower him, than already the ride got rocky. Trump insists on taking racist shots at the Federal judge hearing two of the civil cases in the Trump "University" swindle. Trump evidently knows he's guilty as sin, so he has been hollering about how unfair the judge is, on account of the judge is "Mexican," (a born-American of Mexican heritage- so by Trump's logic, we need to call Trump a German) and Trump is building a wall on the Mexican border, as he intones to interviewers, implying they are dense to not see the obvious source of the judge's "bias." Trump has to preemptively give himself an alibi for when he loses the case. He's going to gin up his ignorant followers into a frenzy of outrage, hoping to intimidate or at least pressure the judiciary.

Of course, whenever Trump doesn't get his way, a Terrible Injustice has been done to him.

Overgrown spoiled brat, anyone?

The Republicans have been justifying their embrace of Trump with the line that Hillary Clinton would be so awful as president that this terrible fate for the nation must be avoided no matter what. (Actually she's fundamentally the same as them. An imperialist, U.S. hegemonist, and corporate oligarchy servant out for herself. This is purely partisan politics, rival political gangs in a tug of war over who gets power, like two dogs snarling and pulling on the same bone.)

As Ryan put it in rationalizing his embrace of Trump, "This is about preventing a third progressive liberal term."
Yeah, Ryan thinks "Drone Man" Obama, he of the omnivorous secret police surveillance state, the man who deported millions of "aliens," more than any other president, ever, who is the terror of whistleblowers on whom he sics FBI raiders, who forced the medical insurance plan of the reactionary Heritage Foundation down our throats, is a "progressive liberal."

And he thinks Hillary Clinton, a militarist and aggressive imperialist, who with her husband enacted a myriad of repressive laws, helped increase the U.S. prison population to world historic levels, gutted welfare, waged vicious "drug war" on poor communities, blockaded Iraq and killed half a million children in the process, is also a "progressive liberal." Her most recent crime, as Obama's Secretary of State, was backing the Honduran coup, opening the way for the terror state that exists there now.

Ryan is slated to formally preside over the Republican convention, at which Trump will be officially anointed the GOP (Gang Of Plunderers) candidate for President of the United States of America. (Trumpets please.) He had demurely offered to step down from that role if Trump so desired, in the event the courtship hadn't come to fruition.

Ryan announced his intent to vote for Trump (not exactly a ringing endorsement) in the form of a column in his hometown newspaper. Plus some media appearances.

Ryan's published statement was so much guff, of the standard GOP type- regulations are "destroying" both jobs and the economy itself,  America needs to be "saved," there's going to be a great new tax system (how many decades can they keep promising that rainbow?), - and oh,his gang is going to put forward plans to fix all this "this month," meaning June. Also in June, "We’ll present the ideal national security and foreign policy to keep Americans safe," and "we’ll offer a better way to help lift people out of poverty and into lives of self-determination."

Really. All of a sudden you have brand new ways to remake the U.S. and turn it into a paradise for everyone!

You have to wonder, how many stupid people are there out there who believe this stuff? (Probably about the same number who are enthralled by the boorish demagogue Trump.)

One sentence struck me as ironic: "I’ve spent most of my adult life pursuing ways to help protect the “American Idea”—the notion that the condition of one’s birth does not determine the outcome of one’s life," Ryan- or an assistant- wrote.

So, Trump's birth, to a wealthy real estate baron, didn't determine the outcome of his life? I think it might have, Paul, to some degree. This "American idea" of yours sounds like an ideological fantasy, not reality. The U.S. happens to be a class society. And statistics have revealed that there is now more social mobility in 'sclerotic' Europe than in the U.S. 

But you know what Saint Reagan said: "Facts are stupid things."

And global warming is a hoax.

1] "Paul Ryan: Donald Trump can help make reality of bold House policy agenda," Janesville (Wisconsin) Gazette, June 2, 2016. Meaning, a Republican president will sign, not veto, any and all horrible laws a Republican Congress passes. Ugh.

The simpering Paul Ryan, Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives, second in line of succession to the Presidency of the United States after the Vice President.

Saturday, June 04, 2016

If You're Seeking Disingenuousness, The New York Times Is A Great Place To Look!

Year after year, the New York Times "news"paper often demonstrates a remarkable ability to be seemingly oblivious to elephants in the room. It even at times flatly denies the reality that the very facts it reports make obvious. One has to wonder why this is.

Sometimes it would seem to be motivated by a desire to avoid conflict with other capitalist industries, or with institutions of state power. There is also a desire to uphold and protect various planks of the ideological system. They don't want to fundamentally change the outlook or consciousness of people. (That is quite distinct from molding opinion on this or that issue, which they do assiduously, every day.)

Now here is a rather glaring example, which the Times put under the heading "Media," indicating that in the print edition it appeared in the Business section. This is from the Times website dated May 30:

           "Television Networks Struggle to Provide Equal Airtime in the Era of Trump." [1]

The article is about Donald Trump's dominant presence in the media vs. Hillary Clinton's much smaller media footprint. This is attributed by the Times to the different behavioral styles of those two presidential candidates, and in Clinton's case, to an active avoidance of the media. Much of the article consists of handwringing by various media executives and on-air figures, which likewise is disingenuous on their part.

The very first paragraph gets things wrong. Quote: "Donald J. Trump relishes the spotlight of live television. Hillary Clinton has long recoiled from it. Now, the television news industry is wrestling with how to balance fairness, credibility and the temptations of sky-high ratings as it prepares for a presidential matchup like none other."

Fairness, credibility and the temptations of sky-high ratings are in reverse order of actual important to the TV industry. Obvious ratings- a surrogate for revenues and profits- is most important. Credibility matters longer term. Fairness? What fairness? Maybe an appearance of fairness, somewhat. Since when has "fairness" (a totally subjective quality in any event, completely in the eye of the beholder) mattered in propaganda?

But no need to dally there. What struck me most forcefully, and revealed the headline to be packed with disingenuousness to the bursting point (remember, Networks Struggle to Provide Equal Airtime) are some facts from the article itself. Namely that when Clinton gave speeches to labor unions, the TV networks blacked out the speeches. In one instance, they instead "covered" an empty Trump podium. (Unmentioned by the Times: the TV bosses did the same thing to Bernard Sanders. On the night of a bunch of his primary wins, they blacked out his speech, focusing instead on an empty Trump podium. But the Times is no stranger to blacking out news itself. Ralph Nader was virtually ignored by the rag when he ran for president, despite drawing tens of thousands of people to rallies, including ones with admission charges such as at Madison Square Garden in New York City. Do I detect a political bias operating in the "objective journalism" of U.S. news?)

Here are the paragraphs from the article that reveal the dishonesty of the headliine:

"Networks are seeking novel ways to maintain balance [between Trump and Clinton], like staging voter town halls that provide candidates with equal airtime; seeking a wider spectrum of on-air contributors and campaign surrogates; and bringing more fact-checking into segments, as Jake Tapper has done recently on CNN to some acclaim. [Acclaim? From who? From other propagandists, that's who! For asking obvious questions! Hey, I could do that job.]

"Still, the presence of Mr. Trump can be irresistible, especially in an election in which viewership and advertising rates have soared, generating tens of millions of dollars in additional revenue for an industry threatened by digital competition. [What "threat"? The networks all ARE online themselves.There are no "upstart" TV networks.]

"Last week, none of the three major cable news networks — CNN, Fox News, or MSNBC — carried Mrs. Clinton’s speech to a workers’ union in Las Vegas, where she debuted sharp new attack lines against Mr. Trump. [Sounds "newsworthy" to me. She had new things to say. But ah, she was talking to workers, in a union, and the capitalist media hates unions and doesn't much like workers either.]

"Instead, each chose to broadcast a live feed of an empty podium in North Dakota, on a stage where Mr. Trump was about to speak.

"The same discrepancy [sic!] occurred earlier this month, when the cable networks aired Mr. Trump’s address to the National Rifle Association live from start to finish. A speech by Mrs. Clinton in Detroit days later, to a labor union, did not receive the same coverage; all three networks skipped the speech, with Fox News airing a lighthearted [read: trivial] segment about a nationwide backlog of cheese." [My emphases.]

I wouldn't call that a "discrepancy." But the Times is right: covering a Trump speech, while totally ignoring a Clinton speech, is indeed not "the same coverage." Just like zero and 100 aren't "the same."

So here's the disingenuousness. Are the networks "struggling" to provide "equal airtime" when they actively black out events involving unions? Doesn't sound like they're "struggling" very hard.

Notice too the attempt to substitute "town hall" bullshit for people in their actual role as workers. The U.S. media always strives to prevent people from thinking of themselves as workers. "Workers" are always somebody else, somebody costing businesses money, or being selfish and inconsiderate by going on strike and causing the public hardship (or at least inconvenience). We all are "consumers." So there's "the consumer" and "the worker," and never do the twain meet in bourgeois ideology (or in "economics" either, it seems).

But you see, this "discrepancy" is because Trump is just so masterful. He's "irresistible" catnip to the media drones and their masters, who count the dollars in the tills. Here's the Times again:

"In interviews, more than a dozen anchors, executives and news producers displayed admiration for Mr. Trump’s facility with their medium. Some expressed a bit of soul-searching, [see the handwringing?] admitting unease at the unfiltered exposure he has received, with one anchor describing frustration about being asked to conduct on-air interviews with Mr. Trump by telephone, rather than in person. But several offered the defense that whatever viewers make of Mr. Trump, he is undoubtedly newsworthy — and always accessible."

Why, it's enough to make a propagandist swoon!

Of course, you have to be "nice" to Mr. Trump, or he'll abuse you ferociously, and in public.

This is such nonsense. It's like "McCarthyism," the idea that one person is making things happen that are in fact institutional activities. "The" media is promoting Trump, although we have to make a distinction here between the broadcast arms and the print arms. The print arms, aimed at more intelligence and intellectually sophisticated people- people who read- has certainly been quite critical (rightly so, and I mean rightly both factually and morally) of Trump and his despicable demagoguery. But there is no question that broadcast media has aided and abetted the Rise of Trump. In fact, the man can be said to be a media creation.

The truth is, the media pick and choose what to "cover" and what to ignore. The only caveat here is that by creating a Frankenstein monster, "the" media have created a self-reinforcing momentum for Trump. Now they feel compelled, for reasons of profit (as the article does admit) and competition with each other, to keep on giving Trump far more attention than his idiotic statements deserve.

But another caveat: now that he's the presidential candidate of one of the two corporate oligarchic political parties of the U.S. two-party dictatorship, he actually is very important.

What happens if this loose cannon, Donald J. Trump, narcissist extraordinaire, becomes president of the globally dominant U.S.A.?

Well, the ruling elites made their bed, now they have to lie in it. They created their monster, and they'll have to figure out how to control his rampages if he attains the top power position in the U.S. and in the world.

As they used to say in Brooklyn, Oy vey!

1] New York Times, May 30, 2016.

Funny thing, when I went to double check the meaning of disingenuous, Oxford Dictionaries online gave a first example sentence that dovetailed nicely with this essay:

"Not candid or sincere, typically by pretending that one knows less about something than one really does: 'this journalist was being somewhat disingenuous as well as cynical.'"

Now why did they choose that as an example!

Thursday, June 02, 2016

Donald Trump Saves On His Taxes By Letting People Golf For Free

That Trump sure knows how to play all the angles. His "charitable donations" provide another example.

He repeatedly allows people to stage charity auctions and raffles on his golf courses gratis, which he then counts as charitable contributions, which are of course tax deductible. (And he sets the "value" of the free golf.)

In fact, Donald Trump claims millions of dollars in "charitable" deductions without having to actually part with any money.

Furthermore, his "Foundation" is funded by other people, not by him. But his name on the Foundation, the "Donald J. Trump Foundation," tricks people into thinking he's giving away money.

Or I should say, "giving away," because so-called "philanthropy" is in fact a disguised exercise in power by rich people, who get to exert control over the activities of others while also avoiding taxation on their wealth. They "win" two ways.

"Philanthropy" is part of class rule over the rest of us. Rich individuals get to decide which activities and causes- social, cultural, medical, whatever- are worthy of funding, and thus of existing to any meaningful extent. This also sets up walls delimiting what is effectively permitted in society. Those who would challenge these limits have no money to pursue their activities, while everyone else conforms their goals, interests, activities, even their ideologies and attitudes, to the requirements of "philanthropies" which control the money.

Money is power. He who pays the piper calls the tune.

These truisms are true.

We can presume from this example another reason Trump adamantly refuses to release his tax returns. They would reveal yet another sham aspect of his image- that of a generous giver.

Oh, and he also doesn't want us to know that he isn't as rich as he always brags he is.

1]  "Missing from Trump’s list of charitable giving: His own personal cash," Washington Post, May 29, 2016.

Republican Politicians Aided Trump 'University' Fraud

One fact about the scam Donald Trump ran, his so-called "university" that defrauded thousands of suckers for millions of dollars, has gotten very low-key coverage by the U.S. media. That is the fact that at least two politicians of the GOP (Gang Of Plunderers) aided and abetted his frauds, in return for donations to their political campaigns by Trump.

As a result of numerous complaints from victims,in 2010 the Better Business Bureau rated the phony "school" (in actuality a high-pressure sales "seminar," a type of hustle all too common in America) D-minus, its second-lowest grade.

Republican Greg Abbott, at the time Texas Attorney General, opened a civil investigation of "possibly deceptive trade practices." Then in 2010, Abbott killed the investigation, betraying Trump's victims in his state, and Trump "University" pulled out of Texas. Next, Trump gave $35,000 to Abbott's successful gubernatorial campaign.

Abbott's spokesman refused to talk to the Associated Press news organization about it. Abbott is currently the governor of the benighted state of Texas, succeeding an equally corrupt Republican, the moronic Rick Perry [1]

Then there's Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi. She toyed with the idea of joining with New York State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman in a multi-state suit against Trump's scam. Three days after Bondi's spokeswoman popped up in Florida media reports mentioning that Bondi's office was "reviewing" the New York lawsuit, the Donald J. Trump Foundation plopped down $25,000 on a political fundraising committee backing Bondi's re-election campaign. Bondi quickly dropped her investigation and didn't join with other state AG's pursuing civil action on behalf of Trump's numerous victims, falsely claiming there were insufficient grounds to sue the Trump operation.

Currently civil suits are going forward against Trump's racket in California and New York, including by NY State Attorney General Schneiderman. (Trump claims Schneiderman tried to shake him down for a donation- an obvious lie, since Trump would have just given him one, considering Trump's pattern of "legal" bribery, not just in this matter, but throughout his "business career." )

I haven't seen these facts reported in either the New York Times or Washington Post, just in the AP piece referenced below. In general, "the" media protects the system of "legal" bribery in the U.S. This system enables corporate interests and filthy rich individuals to exercise near-hegemonic control over politics in the U.S. Since "the" media are organs of the very same corporate oligarchy, it is logical that this same media gives scant attention to this type of corruption most of the time.

Certainly this time.

1]  "Trump University model: Sell hard, demand to see a warrant," AP,  6/2/16.

For the recent articles on Trump "University," just do an Internet search. Or go to the New York Times (click that for search results at NY Times), where you can read such articles as "Former Trump University Workers Call the School a ‘Lie’ and a ‘Scheme’ in Testimony," May 31, 2016.

Wednesday, June 01, 2016

Donald Trump's Projections

Back in January, Trump staged a televised fund-raiser that he claimed was for the benefit of military veterans. (Actually it was for his own benefit, as is everything this vain narcissist and egomaniac does.) With great fanfare, he announced from the stage that he had raised more than $6 million, and brayed that he was donating $1 million himself, included in the alleged $6 million figure.

In late May, the Washington Post reported that he never donated a dime. [1]

Typical of this sleazy carnival-barker-quality con man.

So what does Trump do? He calls the media “Unbelievably dishonest.” [2]

That's what's known in psychology as projection. Attributing to others a characteristic in oneself that one subconsciously wishes to disown.

Who's the one being unbelievably dishonest here?

AFTER the Post revealed his scam, he was forced to make his donation- and ONLY after. (No wonder he's so angry at the media. They just cost the con man a cool million.)

What did he think was going to happen?

Sure, for decades the New York City media has promoted him and given him a free ride and presented a false image of him. (As an alibi for their complicity and amoral behavior, and their rotten "journalism," they float the notion that Trump is a master of media manipulation. This is a common excuse the media use when caught in malpractice. Oh, they're such naifs, these cunning masters of media manipulation snooker them all the time! Well maybe go into another line of work, "journalists."

No, they're not that naive. Or to quote a song, they're "not, that, in-no-cent." [3])

So maybe he's too used to media complicity in his grotesque self-promotion. But surely he's been experiencing for long enough now how it's different when you're trying to seize the power of the presidency. This isn't some gimcrack real estate deal, or a scam "university." This is getting your hands on the power of the U.S. nation-state, the greatest power on earth.

Trump had more to say about the awfulness of reporters for failing to continue to function as his public relations brigade:

“The press should be ashamed of themselves.” [4]

Well, yes, but for other reasons than making Trump "look bad," as he tongue-lashed them for doing. He complained that the veterans he deceived were angry at him. Apparently he thinks the media is obligated to assist him in his scams, ruses, shams, and con jobs.

They would if they thought his frauds served the interests of the super-rich, of the corporate oligarchy, and of imperialist state power. After all, they go along with politicians' and presidents' frauds all the time.

They aided and abetted Nixon through a career of political fraud, for instance. Then there's LBJ's Tonkin Gulf fabrication. The Big Lies that "justified" the Iraq invasion of 2003. The 9/11 coverup. Hell, the JFK, RFK, and King assassinations, where the media are complicit to this day in protecting the conspirators in the CIA, FBI, and city police departments that participated.

How about every coup and invasion by the U.S., justified by some alleged "communist threat"?
There are probably thousands of examples, if one could assemble a large enough research team to review decades of media "reporting" and compare it to actual historical fact.

Maybe Trump's problem- one of his problems, I should say- is he is too much of a cynic and not enough of a hypocrite. The way the U.S., its elites, and its media get over is by being genuine hypocrites. They largely believe their own bullshit. Remember, hypocrisy is the tribute that vice pays to virtue. Thus for example they pretend to be devoted to democracy, freedom, and human rights, while their actions prove the exact opposite. (The U.S. is now the most totally-surveilled society on earth, bar none. There is literally less privacy here than in any other nation on earth. And I'm including China and North Korea. Nobody even has the technical ability to do what the U.S. government is doing right now.)

But I digress. On Trump's denunciation of the media (“The press should be ashamed of themselves”), obviously it's  Trump who should be ashamed. And would be, if he were a normal human being who possessed a conscience. Being shameless, instead he shoots the media messengers.

I think the media "coverage" of Trump has gotten "tougher" (i.e. like journalism) because they (and by "they" I mean both the "journalists" and more importantly the media czars who control the media) have awakened to the fact that Trump could actually become president, and that with a loose cannon like him in the Oval Office, things could get, shall we say, very interesting, in very bad ways.

Trump is obviously reckless, nor does he submit to any authority (like the collective authority of the corporate oligarchy, or the Deep State of the military and secret police, or of the "foreign policy
establishment"). Completely lacking in relevant political experience, he would be a more radical experiment than Bush the Younger was, who was also unqualified by experience and knowledge to be president, just from an imperialist managerial perspective. (Of course, his eminence grise, vice president Richard Cheney, was a lifelong imperialist apparatchik. Why the Bush presidency was so disastrous was due to a lot more than Bush's ignorance and fecklessness.)

Over the years there have been a few honorable exceptions to the media rule of promoting Trump. The Village Voice has a large archive of factual articles about Donald Trump.

1] "Four months after fundraiser, Trump says he gave $1 million to veterans group," Washington         Post, May 24, 2016.

2] "Donald Trump Lashes Out at Media While Detailing Gifts to Veterans." New York Times, May 31, 2016.

3] Yeah, Britney Spears. "Oops! ...I Did It Again." She actually sang some great songs. "Piece of Me" brilliantly sticks it to the media hyenas who, like a bunch of catty teenagers, liked to trash her. Of course, others wrote and produced the music.

Big disappointment when she came out backing Bush the Younger.

4] New York Times, op cit.

U.S. Brazenly Announces Its Coup Plans for Venezuela

The New York Times has for years been the favorite bulletin board for high U.S. government officials to post anonymous messages. Their missives to the world at large are often granted page one placement. These messages, converted into "news" stories by the NY Times, are always intended to advance a political agenda, manipulate what people think, and often are disinformation (that is, lies).

A revealing example of this phenomenon appeared a few days ago under this headline:

"Nicolás Maduro Tightens Hold on Venezuela as U.S. Fears Further Tumult." [1]

Now the first thing that needs to be said, indeed stressed, is the absurdity of the word "Fears." The U.S. doesn't fear tumult in an enemy state. The U.S. seeks to CREATE tumult in enemy states! That is one of the "tools" in its "toolbox" for destabilizing hated leftist regimes. So the editors are being smarmily disingenuous before the reader even gets to the article.

Now let's move on to the body of the article. (It was co-written by Mark Landler, one of the more dodgy NY Times "reporters.") Here's the first three paragraphs:

CARACAS, Venezuela — President Nicolás Maduro of Venezuela threatened Saturday to seize idle factories in his country using a new emergency decree, moves that followed warnings by United States officials that economic chaos in the country had turned even his allies against him.
“An idle plant is a plant the people will take,” local news outlets quoted Mr. Maduro as saying at a rally. “We will take all the actions necessary to activate production, which is being paralyzed by the bourgeoisie.”
The threats came a day after Mr. Maduro said he would extend a state of emergency for another 60 days, a measure he said was aimed at reviving the country’s collapsing economy. The government said the move would extend presidential powers, though it was vague on specifics.
Notice the Bad Guy makes "threats," the Good Guys "warn."

The next paragraph describes in three sentences dire economic conditions in Venezuela. Then we get some ersatz hand-wringing from U.S. secret police bosses:

The United States fears that Venezuela could face a major eruption of street violence in the coming months, according to senior American intelligence officials who spoke on condition of anonymity in discussing the government’s latest intelligence assessment.
While Mr. Maduro has so far held off a recall vote against him, the American officials said that they believed his grip on power was weakening by the day, and that he could be removed from power, either in a palace coup by members of his party or by the Venezuelan military.
While the military’s high command appears unlikely to act against the government right now, these officials said, its midlevel officers are more restive. One American official said intelligence officials were worried about some kind of change, but were not aware of any active plots. [My emphases, obviously.]
The CIA (presumably) is "worried" Madura might be overthrown? Is that sarcasm? Eager to see "some kind of change" (oh so coy; just say "Maduro overthrown") is the obvious truth! What kind of "newspaper" prints whopping lies without pointing out their falsehood? Certainly when the Times quotes Putin or Ayatollah Khamenei they make sure to contradict what they're saying.

After some more description of economic problems in Venezuela (with nary a mention of their causes, such as the plunge in oil prices over the past couple of years) we come to the last paragraph:

                 The officials acknowledged that the United States had limited influence in
                 Venezuela, where the government has blamed American meddling for the 

"Meddling" meaning subversion. By the way, there are some "secrets" the NY Times doesn't report- what the U.S. has been up to in Venezuela since Hugo Chavez ascended to power. You'll have to go elsewhere to learn about that. To the NY Times, those are just some wild and baseless accusations being flung about by a leftie government to cover up for its own failings. (And I'm not saying the Venezuelan government has no failings. But there hasn't been any honest discussion of them in the Western capitalist media, which has confined itself to Chavez-Maduro bashing since Day One.)

What I found a bit stunning was how the Obama regime openly advertised Maduro's alleged vulnerabilities. Maduro can only take these as threats (note the oh-so-innocent CIA avowal of being unaware of any coup plots. Sure. Fomenting coups are one of the CIA's main purposes, and it has a long, vicious history of committing and attempting them.) It's like a gangster walking into a business and saying "Nice little shop you have here. Be a shame if anything were to happen to it." The idea that the U.S. and CIA don't want anything BAD to happen to the hated Maduro is just a weird insult to our intelligence, once that the CIA and, worse, the New York Times is willing to shovel down the gullets of its presumably educated (but apparently infinitely credulous) readers- infinitely credulous when the guff is coming from their bourgeous bible, the NY Times. 

It's germane to mention here the fact that the NY Times has a history of hailing U.S. coups, including the three most notorious ones, Iran 1953, Guatemala 1954, and Chile, 9/11/73. And leading up to those coups, the NY Times used it propaganda powers to prepare public opinion to see those mass murderous acts as Good Things, "rescuing" countries from "communism."

"Senior American Intelligence Official." 
We got rid of that bastard Chavez, now Maduro goes down!  John Brennan, CIA Director.

By the way, the "government's latest intelligence assessment" is no doubt highly classified, which means the "intelligence officials" who divulged it to the Times committed felonies, since New York Times reporters don't have security clearances. But Obama certainly won't be siccing the FBI and "Justice" Department on them, like he does to whistleblowers, nor put the reporters under criminal investigation, as he's also done. These are "authorized" "leaks." (They aren't leaks, they're plants. The U.S. media deliberately mischaracterizes what is going on in these cases when the government uses the media for its political ends.)

The Washington Post is another imperialist bulletin board where high government apparatchiks can freely post anonymous political notes. Here too those ghostlike "intelligence officials" made an appearance. But the Post is a lot more honest than the Times in this instance, even though the Post is definitely to the right of the Times these days. (The Times is also quite mealy-mouthed, which could be a factor in this case.) [2]

Here are the opening paragraphs of the Post version of the Obama regime secret police planted article:

        Venezuela, where clashes erupted this week between security forces and demonstrators
        protesting food stortages, power blackouts and political gridlock, may be headed toward 
        an all-out popular uprising.that could lead to the overthrow of its government this year
        senior U.S. intelligence officials said.

        “You can hear the ice cracking,” an intelligence official said [or gloated]. 
        “You know there’s a crisis coming.” [He added, licking his chops.]

         Disaster is pending in Venezuela at the same time the Obama administration believes that
         it has vastly improved U.S. standing in Latin America, compared with the days when political          
        and economic turmoil in the hemisphere was blamed, sometimes with reason, on either            
        interference or disregard by Washington.
       There have been many times over the past two decades when the United States has wished
       for the demise of the left-wing Bolivarian revolution begun by former Venezuelan president            
       Hugo Chávez and carried on since 2013 by his successor, Nicolás Maduro. The Obama            
       administration and its predecessor have charged the government in Caracas with corruption,
       human rights abuses and drug smuggling, among other things, and have supported the
       political opposition.

You can see the relative frankness of the Post's version vs. the dishonesty of the Times. Still, the Post is discreet enough not to mention with what "reason" the U.S. was "blamed" for "turmoil," which "sometimes" the accusations weren't just shrill blame-shifting, and what the "interference" consisted of. (Like, installing murderous military dictatorships, maybe?)

And yet the Post, like the Times, was perfectly willing to provide a platform for absurd lies, which it ran without demurral. Such as this:

       The days of America rooting for the ouster of Chávez and his revolutionary movement
      “are over,” the intelligence official said. Now, “it’s not really the case that the United
      States is rooting for any outcome, other than that it’s not an outbreak of political violence.
      You’d have to be insane not to worry.” [We all know how much the U.S. ABHORS violence!]

      The senior intelligence officials, who briefed a small group of reporters, spoke on the
      condition of anonymity under ground rules set by the government.

Why they would be any less eager to get rid of Maduro than Chavez is left unexplained.

The Post article concluded by explicating three ways to overthrow the Venezuelan government:

      The intelligence officials outlined three possible change-of-government scenarios.
      The failure of this year’s recall referendum could lead to another petition next year.
      But the opposition — itself divided and ill-disciplined — has been a disappointment
      to the Obama administration.

      Second, there could be a “palace coup” in which some members of Maduro’s
      government move to oust him with the help of some segment of the military.

      The third possible scenario is a military move, possibly led by lower-ranking officers
      and enlisted members who also are feeling the economic pinch, to remove the
      government altogether.

Nothing like spelling it out, guys. (Gals too, these days, They're so "progressive," they even let women and blacks be imperialist gangsters now! And gays! How much more enlightened can you get!) So there's the game plans. Rather, the end game plans.

"Senior U.S. intelligence official."
The Maduro regime is this close to the edge. All it needs is one little push...  
James Clapper, Director of National Intelligence.

Here's a measure of the depth of cynicism involved in this propaganda salvo. If the U.S. were truly worried about a collapse in Venezuela, and wanted to avert a coup, it wouldn't PUBLICIZE all this. It wouldn't in effect goad the opposition, and the military, in this way. Instead of very conspicuously handing out a roadmap for overthrowing Maduro, it would quietly inform key opposition and military figures that the U.S. would not support a coup.

Of course the U.S. WILL support a coup, just as it supported the Honduran coup, a fact Obama's previous Secretary of State, Hillary "Hard-nosed Realist" Clinton even bragged about in her recent book,  In fact, it probably prefers one, as that will make it easier for the U.S. to choose Maduro's successor than if the regime is toppled by a mass rebellion of some sort.

So on the guise of being worried about the Maduro regime falling (and the end of Chavismo, hopes the U.S. global masters), the U.S. global gestapo is trying to cause that very thing.

All this parallels Obama's habitual pattern of saying the exact opposite of what he actually intends to do. (Sometimes, of course, he says what he means- when it's something evil.) Obama may well be the most mendacious president in U.S, history. (Although Bill Clinton, another conscience-free con man, is certainly in the running.) Not even Reagan and Nixon quite compare, as both of them frequently came right out with their reactionary intentions. Not so Obama. Obama endeavors to deceive almost always.

Now, here's something very important to notice, that the U.S. propaganda system and imperialist government is trying to slip by you: for all the moaning about leftists taking over Latin America, the U.S. has been overthrowing  can one left-leaning government after another, or certainly giving them a shove. In Brazil, the largest and most important Latin American nation, thieving legislators have removed president Dilma Rousseff (whom the vengeful Obama no doubt held a grudge against for taking offense at his NSA listening in on her phone calls- and if you don't think he's vengeful, and ruthless, take note of how he had Egyptian secret police goons break Medea Benjamin's arm after she interrupted one of his speeches, and how he had Anwar al-Awlaki's son and nephew bumped off). These fine men defenestrated Rousseff so they can quash the criminal investigations into themselves. In Argentina, U.S. billionaire Paul Singer financed an election victory for Macri, replacing Isabel Kirshner. Macri promptly handed over billions of dollars of Argentina's national funds to Singer and his fellow hedge fund hyenas. Honduras I already mentioned. Obama has pried open the door to internally subvert Cuba, an elusive "prize" the U.S. has sought since 1959. Guess we better assume Ecuador and Bolivia are on the list. And except for Cuba, none of these regimes is or was particularly leftist, just mildly social democratic. That shows the extreme intolerance and hard right-wing nature of the permanent U.S. imperialist state.

Capo di tutti capi

I LOVE you guys!     U.S. Emperor Obama

One more thing worth remembering: we still don't know what caused Hugo Chavez's lethal cancer. We do know that Imperialist Boss Obama sure seemed satisfied with it..

This was Obama's entire statement upon Chavez's death, from the White House website: 

Statement of President Obama on the Death of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez

At this challenging time of President Hugo Chavez’s passing, the United States reaffirms its support for the Venezuelan people and its interest in developing a constructive relationship with the Venezuelan government. As Venezuela begins a new chapter in its history, the United States remains committed to policies that promote democratic principles, the rule of law, and respect for human rights.

There it is. Not a single word of condolence. And a reiteration in coded language of the U.S. determination to overthrow the leftist regime. This is the new verbiage the U.S. uses since invoking The Communist Menace as an alibi for its subversion, sabotage, terrorism and coups became obsolete. Obama's own record is crystal clear the contempt in which he actually holds "democratic principles, the rule of law, and respect for human rights." Massive secret surveillance of the entire U.S. population, assassinations of even teenagers by drone, contempt for law- he writes his own laws, in secret, and refuses to let anyone else read them, and has taken the pieces of the Bill of Rights shredded by his predecessor and reduced them to confetti- this is the rhetoric of cynical global gangsters.

Keep in mind that Obama personally reviews death lists before the CIA and military carry out their assassinations. He even authorized the murder of the teenage son and nephews of al-Qaeda in Yemen propagandist Anwar al-Awlaki. So he's not squeamish. (Awlaki father and son, "terminated with extreme prejudice" two weeks apart, were both American citizens, for what that's worth. Not much, it seems. Mere citizenship didn't save Michael Hastings or Sandra Bland either. "Fellow Americans" is indeed a hollow, cynical term.)

To review the death of Chavez, the cold satisfaction the U.S. took in his death, and the unresolved question of whether the CIA murdered Chavez by inducing the cancer that the Cubans' best doctors couldn't cure, see "Chavez, Cancer, and the CIA," March 9, 2013; "With Chavez Dying, Obama "National Security Team" Preparing to Gloat," January 10, 2013; "Dead Man Walking: Hugo Chavez Doomed. CIA Dancing a Jig?," December 12, 2012.

And the British government did its bit in the demonization of Chavez. Like a puppy-dog eager to please, it is usually avid in its desire to demonstrate its usefulness to the U.S., an urge manifested in its leaping to the U.S. military's side with forces of its own when there's a fight on somewhere. (This sycophantic urge was played on by Obama when he opined that the UK would be less useful to the U.S. if it left the EU. The cold manipulator Obama thus expertly plucked the strings of British elite insecurity about its power and position in the world.)

The British ruling class still suffers from the delusion that the U.S. will reciprocate its servility by sticking up for Britain's dessicated imperialist pretensions. (At best, the UK is allowed to ride the U.S.' coattails. Here's a telling historical fact: the Reagan regime almost sided with the fascist Argentine military junta in the Falklands War, at the urging of the fascist Jeane Kirkpatrick and demented reactionary Alexander Haig.*  What turned Reagan around was his Secretary of war, Caspar Weinberger, who insisted the U.S. had to aid Britain.) Someone needs to tell the British: nations don't have "friends," notwithstanding the constant invocation of that word, nations have interests.

Given this quasi-craven attitude of the British government, it's no surprise that its propaganda arm, the BBC (British Broadcasting Corporation), often reliably parrots the U.S. media/government line and attitude. A particularly grotesque example of this occurred when Huge Chavez died. I discussed this, quoting the BBC in the essay title: "Hugo Chavez: Champion of the Poor or Unhinged Megalomaniac?" March 6, 2013. Oh those English are so refined and subtle.

* Haig was an obscure colonel and son of a Republican lawyer whom Nixon rapidly elevated to four-star general rank. A reactionary fanatic, he committed many crimes during his "career." He actually suggested a "nuclear warning shot" in Europe to "deter" the Soviet Union. [Congress and the Nuclear Freeze: An Inside Look at the Politics of a Mass Movement, by Douglas C. Waller, 1987, page 19.]

But the bourgeois media will remember him, if at all, for declaring himself "in control" at the White House when Reagan was shot and hospitalized in March 1981. Haig was Secretary of State at the time, a post he resigned in mid-1982, a year and a half into Reagan's reign.

1] New York Times, May 14, 2015.

2] "U.S. intelligence officials: Venezuela could be headed for collapse," Washington Post, May 13,      2016.