Friday, December 29, 2017

Israeli Parliament Passes Netanyahu Criminal Protection Law

The Knesset has passed a law designed specifically to protect Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu from corruption charges. A member of his own party, Likud, put it forward.

 The new law blocks the Israeli police from revealing incriminating information about politicians prior to a formal indictment by the prosecutor's office. Over the years, the police have had to pressure the prosecutor to indict criminal politicians by publicizing the evidence they assembled. Israeli prosecutors are as much politicians as law enforcers, a situation one finds in many nations (including the U.S.). Netanyahu has greater sway over the prosecution office than over the police.

Typical of rightwing fanatics, Netanyahu (and his son) is corrupt as well as repressive. He is the subject of two criminal investigation, involving taking gifts from wealthy businessmen, and his interference in the media business.

Of course, while Israeli politicians move to increase their own rights and protections under Israeli law, Palestinians have no rights. Subject to arbitrary arrest, detention without trial, torture, and fake "trials" in kangaroo military "courts" (with a zero acquittal rate), this highlights the dual nature of Israeli "law" and "justice." Even Palestinian children are subject to vicious abuse by the Israeli "authorities."

Enough of this exposure of my corruption. Let's put an end to busybody police. Instead of busting my chops, they should be cracking Palestinian heads!


Friday, December 22, 2017

See? I told you the Bitcoin Bubble Would Burst

Five days ago the make-believe currency Bitcoin hit $20,000. Today it crashed to $10,000, a plunge of 50%, before recovering to $12,000 (that's a 20% rise). Bitcoin has gone through repeated bouts of bubbles and bursting bubbles over its existence. A chart of its history looks like a roller-coaster.
Bitcoin is fetishized by Libertarian types who are into digital technology. They have fantasies of liberation from government control through technology and a neo-laissez-faire capitalism. This is magical thinking.

With every sharp rise in the price (NOT the value- it has no value) of Bitcoin, speculators pile in, driving the price up more. As in every market mania, there are shills who confidently assert the price will go much higher. (Some jackass insisted a few days ago that Bitcoin would go to $300,000.)

It's the same in other markets. A capitalist polemicist and a pseudo-economist came out with a book in 1999, "Dow 36,000: The New Strategy for Profiting From the Coming Rise in the Stock Market." That would have been a fourfold increase, and they predicted it would be by 2002 or 2004. Guess what? Shortly thereafter stocks went into a major decline. And that was followed by the 2008 financial crisis, which caused the stock market to collapse.

Another fool, a "certified financial advisor," pushed a book, "Dow, 30,000 by 2008- Why It's Different This Time."

Yet another shill came out with a tome in 1999, "Dow 40,000: Strategies for Profiting from the Greatest Bull Market in History."

You can still buy this crap on Amazon, amazingly enough. Why anyone would want to buy very wrong, very bad predictions from the past is a puzzle.

For an explanation of what is genuinely destructive about Bitcoin, see "The Great Bitcoin Con Game and How It's Harming Everyone On Earth." (It contributes to global warming.)

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

How The Media Acted As Accomplices to the Sex Crimes of Harvey Weinstein (and of many others)

The American Media is Like the Germans: Either At Your Feet or At Your Throat.

One aspect of American (and not only American) media is starkly illustrated [1] by the Harvey Weinstein affair, and that is its tendency to either be fawning sycophants or a lynch mob. That is, a former darling can be turned on suddenly and ferociously. The target can be the same person previously adored, or a foreign nation or ruler when the "interests" of the attacking media's nation warrant a reversal of attitude. Examples of this are the reversal of political polarity from positive to negative when the Shah of Iran was toppled and the Shiite theocrats took over; when Saddam Hussein invaded Kuwait; and the Soviet Union, which went from enemy from 1917 to 1942, when it became friend, then back to enemy from 1945 until 1989 when Gorbachev surrendered the client states of Eastern Europe. (The S.U. ultimately shattered into pieces in 1991.)

This is not to say Weinstein doesn't deserve strong condemnation. It SHOULD raise questions about the media's former sycophancy towards him. Indeed, it aided and abetted his abuses of and attacks on women. And even though that is obvious, the media has managed to totally ignore that aspect of the issue. Here's just some of the proof of media complicity in Weinstein's crimes:

Buried in a long New Yorker article by Ronan Farrow about Weinstein's sexual assaults and coercive behavior was evidence of media complicity in aiding and abetting his crimes. How witting or clueless his media enablers were has not been revealed by the media.  Here are excerpts with key words highlighted by me in bold:

Virtually all of the people I spoke with told me that they were frightened of retaliation. “If Harvey were to discover my identity, I’m worried that he could ruin my life,” one former employee told me. Many said that they had seen Weinstein’s associates confront and intimidate those who crossed him, and feared that they would be similarly targeted. Four actresses, including Mira Sorvino and Rosanna Arquette, told me they suspected that, after they rejected Weinstein’s advances or complained about them to company representatives, Weinstein had them removed from projects or dissuaded people from hiring them. Multiple sources said that Weinstein frequently bragged about planting items in media outlets about those who spoke against him; these sources feared that they might be similarly targeted. Several pointed to Gutierrez’s case, in 2015: after she went to the police, negative items discussing her sexual history and impugning her credibility began rapidly appearing in New York gossip pages.

“This wasn’t a one-off. This wasn’t a period of time,” an executive who worked for Weinstein for many years told me. “This was ongoing predatory behavior towards women—whether they consented or not.


“Textbook sexual harassment” was how Nestor [a young female employee] described Weinstein’s behavior to me. “It’s a pretty clear case of sexual harassment when your superior, the C.E.O., asks one of their inferiors, a temp, to have sex with them, essentially in exchange for mentorship.” She recalled refusing his advances at least a dozen times. “ ‘No’ did not mean ‘no’ to him,” she said. “I was very aware of how inappropriate it was. But I felt trapped.”

Throughout the breakfast, she said, Weinstein interrupted their conversation to yell into his cell phone, enraged over a spat that Amy Adams, a star in the Weinstein movie “Big Eyes,” was having in the press. Afterward, Weinstein told Nestor to keep an eye on the news cycle, which he promised would be spun in his favor. Later in the day, there were indeed negative news items about his opponents, and Weinstein stopped by Nestor’s desk to be sure that she’d seen them.

By that point, Nestor recalled, “I was very afraid of him. And I knew how well connected he was."

Notice that Farrow and The New Yorker protect the identities of the media organs that willingly, probably eagerly, ran whatever malicious propaganda Weinstein chose to plant with them. Media people stick together. They are a tightknit fraternity (except when it came to Michael Hastings, for one, who was ostracized for reporting the contemptuous attitude of General Stanley McCrystal, and the horrible example he set for his staff, towards his commander-in-chief, the president of the United States, and the rest of the civilian leadership, the alleged superiors to the military, and who have been accessories after the fact in Hastings assassination by refusing to report the obvious facts, much less investigate it), who in general have an all-around non-aggression pact with each other (excepting Murdoch's minions, who gleefully attack other major media organs, because like all fascists, they consider themselves the only legitimate pretenders to power). There is also the desire not to close the doors to potential future employers on the part of the reporters and commentators. They are all careerists who rely on friendly relations to gain exposure for themselves. So both institutional and personal factors create a system of media self-protection. Once in awhile these media actors put on a show of self-reflection, self-analysis, self-pseudo-criticism, which are invariably acts of self-protection, justification, exoneration, sprinkled with what the CIA dubs limited hang-outs, that ism, dribbling out seeming "revelations" while keeping the most damaging facts and truths well-hidden.

Despite the efforts of The New Yorker to protect the guilty, we know from other sources (in this case the WNYC radio program On The Media, October 13, 2017) that in the most egregious case, the attack on    the woman who instigated the New York City police criminal investigation of Weinstein, to discredit her, Weinstein's media accomplices were Murdoch's minions at his reactionary rag New York Post "news"paper, specifically Page Six, a tawdry "gossip" and political attack column. Fitting that it should be so. Murdoch has long been an employer of sexual predators, including but not limited to Roger Ailes, the evil, Mephistophelian founder of Murdoch's vile agitpropaganda pseudo-news channel, Fox "News," and the former top on-air propagandist on that network, Bill "SHUT UP!" O'Reilly. Among his numerous major crimes, Ailes organized the rehabilitation of the image of the loathsome Richard Nixon in 1968, helping elect Nixon president, from which position Nixon rained bombs down on Vietnam and destroyed democracy in Chile with a CIA-Pentagon coup, among numerous other crimes against humanity, domestic and foreign. To be sure, the CIA played the crucial role in electing Nixon, first by assassinating Martin Luther King, Jr., in April 1968, prompting justified rioting by blacks which played straight into Nixon's racist "law and order" campaign theme (code for "repress the blacks") but especially in June by murdering Robert Kennedy, who would have defeated Nixon in the November election had the CIA not eliminated him. (As it was, Nixon barely edged the ultimate Democratic candidate by less than a percentage point, the loathsome Hubert Humphrey, Lyndon Johnson's vice president, who discredited himself with liberal voters by his sycophantic support for Johnson's Vietnam war.)

Just to return to the relatively trivial matter of a disgusting movie industry poohbah abusing his power, and the major corporate media protecting him: NBC refused to run Ronan Farrow's story about Weinstein, so he took it to The New Yorker.

1] Illustrated, but ignored by that same media, of course.

Sex criminals Weinstein, O'Reilly, Roger Ailes- beneath their politics, birds of a feather.

"HEY! Who's molesting who!" Hillary Clinton just can't keep her hands off Harvey Weinstein. (Hint: She loves his money. I mean, his "donations" because he "supports what she stands for" and "the values of the Democratic Party." Yeah, right.)

"Stupid bitch, here's how you give a blowjob!" Victim of multiple misunderstandings Bill O'Reilly was merely conducting one-on-one sex ed lessons.

Who could resist sexy Roger Ailes! We sure do miss Rupert Murdoch's propaganda master, the man who invented the "new Nixon" of 1968. (Meet the New Nixon, same as the Old Nixon.)

And give credit where credit is due: The Man who empowered the sex fiends and spreaders of socially destructive reactionary agitprop Ailes and O'Reilly, the Global Master Propagandist himself, Rupert Murdoch, the Ageless One.

The Great Bitcoin Con Game and How It's Harming Everyone On Earth

First of all, what is Bitcoin?

Bitcoin is fake money. That is, you can't actually shop with it. [1]

And unlike gold, another "alternative" currency, it has no tangible physical existence and no uses (gold has manufacturing uses, also in dentistry, and as jewelry).

The current Bitcoin Bubble is madder than the Dutch tulip frenzy. A year ago, this make-believe money was trading for $700 per Bitcoin- and even that was absurd for something with no actual value whatsoever. Yet it's risen over 2000 percent.

Some U.S. futures exchanges just jumped in to get in on the action. In the first day of trading, the Bitcoin contract closed up 20%, to $18,545. [2]

Unlike other speculative manias, this one is based on absolutely nothing. Even the tulip mania had a physical basis- flowers. Likewise stock market frenzies have actual companies at base. Futures markets trade currencies and commodities like metals and agricultural products. Other exotic speculative instruments were founded on U.S. Government Treasury obligations or aggregated home mortgages.

Bitcoin is based on absolutely nothing, and is backed by no government or central bank. It is a notional pseudo-currency.

The only physical reality of it is the computers doing massive mathematical calculations that is the game that "creates" the non-existent "currency," the Bitcoins.

It turns out that those computers use more electricity than the nation of Ireland (population 4.7 million people). [3]

Power plants have to generate that electricity. It turns out that at least half of the computing done to keep this speculative bubble of nothing inflated occurs in China. China burns coal for most of its electricity. Coal is highly polluting, and releases large amount of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, warming the planet. 

Thus we have a perfect expression of pure capitalist parasitism helping to wreak havoc on the climate, creating more and fiercer hurricanes, ultimately leading to sea level rises that will flood the coastal regions (and cities) of the continents and create drought and massive famines. In California the Governor has cites global warming as a cause of the massive forest fires that is burning large swaths of that state.

The insane bubble in Bitcoin will inevitably end in tears for some unlucky speculators. (Others with lucky timing will make a killing.) But the real lasting damage is to the planet we live on.  A planet unfortunately at the mercy of greedy parasites.

1]  Only a very few merchants are accepting Bitcoin as payment for purchases. Out of the hundreds of millions of sellers on the planet. And Bitcoin is used for some criminal activities. And computer ransomware extortionists are starting to demand payment in Bitcoins.

2]  Bitcoin started trading on the Chicago Futures and Options Exchanges. On Monday, December 18, the Chicago Mercantile Exchange is going to jump in on the hot action.

3]  BBC, December 12, 2017, morning broadcast.

Monday, December 18, 2017

Another Example of the Democratic Party Treating Their "Base" Like Dirt

Here's a brief item (four paragraphs in total) from the Wall Street Journal's "Washington Wire" column under the heading "Government Ethics," titled "IRS Scrutiny Hooks Left-Leaning Groups." I have annotated it with facts omitted from the piece, and with the larger political context. [1]

Some nonprofit groups received scrutiny from the Internal Revenue Service through the use of screening terms that would single out left-leaning groups, according to an inspector general's report released Thursday. [October 5.]

What happened to those groups from 2004 to 2013 [i.e under both Bush the Younger and Barack "The Drone Assassin" Obama] was similar to the treatment that tea-party groups received from 2010 to 2012. [Except that the tea-party groups were only targeted by a Democratic regime, and only for no more than three years- and there was a huge political brouhaha over it, and calls for criminal prosecutions of IRS officials, and forced resignations, whereas there was no reaction at all to the persecution of "leftists" for nine to ten years, and just a little article years later in a business paper.] A report from the same inspector general about conservative groups in 2013 led to the resignation of then-acting IRS Commissioner Steven Miller. [And of IRS official Lois Lerner, who had to hire criminal defense lawyers to deal with the threat of indictment as Republican politicians and the rightwing media mob were demanding.]

"Democrats should be outraged," said Rep. Kevin Brady (R., Texas), chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, about the new report. "The IRS targeted Americans based on their political beliefs, both parties."

Some Democrats have said the report shows that there wasn't political bias or targeting at the IRS. They said the problem was poor management and unclear rules about how to define political activity and how much is acceptable for different types of nonprofits. [End.]

Notice the essential unity of the two corporate imperialist parties that form a political cartel, both persecuting "leftists" whether it's a Democratic or Republican regime. Of course, throughout U.S. history, progressives of all stripes have been systematically surveiled, harassed, persecuted, subjected to various "dirty tricks" like thefts and sabotage of every stripe, imprisoned, and murdered by state agents and institutions, while reactionaries have had almost entirely free rein, including to commit thousands of acts of terrorism. (Examples: the Ku Klux Klan, the lynchings of thousands of blacks, the reign of terror against the civil rights movement in the 1950's and '60's, the thousands of attacks on abortion clinics, assassinations of anti-establishment activists by rightwing terrorists the secret police use as cut-outs, and more.)

Whether it's anti-abortion fanatics, Christian fundamentalists, gun fetishists, or people who want to shrink government down small enough to drown it in a bathtub, the GOP (Gang Of Plunderers) always obsequiously panders to its base, at least in rhetoric. And it serves most of those groups' interests, passing laws (especially on the state level) making abortions relentlessly more onerous to obtain, loosening gun laws to the point that the Texas state government has forced universities in that state to allow students to carry guns on campus, against the objections of those institutions allegedly dedicated to education and free thought. And in league with the Democrats, passing draconian laws that in practice target blacks and Hispanics for imprisonment, and tax laws that grossly favor the rich and large corporations.

1] Wall Street Journal, October 6, 2017, page A5.

Monday, December 11, 2017

Nobel Committee Awards Peace Prize to The International Campaign To Abolish Nuclear Weapons, Forgoing Giving Obama a Second Peace Prize

Remember 2009? Barack "The Drone Assassin" Obama had only been in office a matter of months, and the European bourgeoisie were so overjoyed with this allegedly new-model president replacing the execrable George W. Bush that the Swedish Nobel Committee got carried away and giddily awarded the Nobel Peace Prize to the newly-minted "good" U.S. president for accomplishing.... absolutely nothing to advance World Peace. [1]

Obama even sprinkled a bit of cold water on the Swedish Nobel poohbahs in his acceptance speech, cautioning that he might have to fight some wars- Good Wars, of course, wars of necessity. (What other kind is there? Throughout history empires have "needed" to conquer and subjugate to add to their wealth, for example. The Third Reich needed to defend "Western Civilization" from the Jewish-Slavic-Bolshevik hordes from the East- they actually said this, and citizens from all over Western Europe and Scandinavia rallied to the cause, joining the Waffen-SS, and helping round up Jewish vermin for extermination in their home countries. War is always "necessary.")

In what in hindsight looks like preordained irony, the 1999 Prize went to Médecins Sans Frontières (Medicine Without Borders), whose hospital in Kunduz, Afghanistan, Obama would later bomb as president, murdering medical staff and patients. After MSF complained about it, Obama sent a tank crashing through its gates. Yes, Obama did it. First, he is Commander in Chief of the U.S. armed forces, as specified in the U.S. Constitution. Thus under the doctrine of command responsibility, he is ultimately responsible. Second, he granted the armed forces the leeway to commit such war crimes and atrocities. And they certainly wouldn't have engaged in the second attack days later without the okay from Obama. Thirdly, it is quite possible that such a crime was either initiated by Obama or the Pentagon ran it by him first. MSF had repeatedly given the U.S. military the precise GPS coordinates of its hospital location, so as to avoid any "accidental" attacks. The same foolish thing that Al-Jazeera does, which has facilitated repeated U.S. attacks on its offices. (British Prime Minister and smarmy criminal Tony Blair had to talk then-president George Bush out of bombing Al-Jazeera's headquarter in Qatar, where it is based!) [2] 

Other U.S. presidents have had the noble Nobel bestowed upon them. Jimmy Carter in 2002, 22 years after he left office, for the vague reason of "his decades of untiring effort to find peaceful solutions to international conflicts, to advance democracy and human rights, and to promote economic and social development." And the very militaristic and rabidly war-mongering Theodore Roosevelt, in 2006, who at least arguably did something involving creating some actual peace, namely brokering an end to the Russo-Japanese war.

The problem with the Nobel Peace Prizes is that giving them out to so many execrable scumbags (there's a long list, but each one would require an explanation) devalues the legitimate recipients, and there certainly are some of those. In addition to prestige, the prize isn't a mere medal, but comes with 9 million Swedish kroner, about $1,110,000 U.S. at today's exchange rate.

Martin Luther King, Jr., received the Prize in 1964. The FBI tried to blackmail him into committing suicide before accepting it, using surreptitiously-made recordings of his sexual dalliances. By 1968 the U.S. power structure had had enough of him (the Washington Post and New York Times, major organs of and soapboxes for elite opinion, both excoriated him for his opposition to the Vietnam War, and his involvement in labor struggles also marked him as a threat) so the CIA murdered him, with the help of the Memphis police, the FBI playing its usual role of cover-up disguised as "investigation," and the entire U.S. establishment media and power system acting as accomplices to this day.

In fact, there is a lot of history that can be mined by going through the role of Peace Prize recipients. But this essay will be too brief to do that. Basically the recipients can be grouped into two categories: people with some meritorious claim to such a prize, and a rogues' gallery of major criminals and international phonies with fraudulent reputations (such as Elie Wiesel and "Mother" Teresa). I mean, Henry Kissinger? Are you trying to make people nauseous?

The Nobel Committee did find an anti-nuclear weapons group prize-worthy on a previous occasion: 1985, when the International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War won it. I wonder where they are today?

1]  According to the Nobel Committee, Obama was worthy of the Prize "for his extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between peoples." I can't even imagine what they were referring to after Obama had only been in office a few months. After eight years of Obamaism, there's still nothing that fits such an extravagant description.

2]  I covered the MSF atrocity in detail in earlier essays. See the articles under

"Oooh, that feels so GOOD to get an undeserved award! (And a million bucks in prize money too!")

Friday, December 08, 2017

Democrats Clean House of Sexual Miscreants To Better Throw Stones At GOP Glass House

That pretty much sums up the action by Congressional Democrats in forcing Representative John Conyers and Senator Al Franken to resign from Congress. The main motive is to be able to more freely attack the GOP (Gang Of Plunderers) for the sexual crimes and misbehavior of the likes of Roy Moore, their candidate for U.S. Senate from Alabama, who as a local District Attorney spent his middle age seducing teenage girls, or for that matter the Republican president of the U.S., who happily bragged about his approach to women as consisting of forcible kissing and "grabbing them by the pussy." The Democrats needed to deprive the Republicans of ammunition to use in retaliation, so Conyers and Franken had to go. Both men resisted pressure from their fellow Democratic lawmakers for weeks before finally giving way. (Although the Democrats still have the albatross of known rapist and philanderer William Jefferson Clinton around their necks. During the presidential campaign the demagogue Trump managed to neutralize the Access Hollywood video of himself boasting of his sexual assaults by bringing along to the next debate women who were wronged by Clinton.)

Conyers, age 88, has clung like a barnacle to his seat for decades. He represents a black district of Detroit, Michigan. He is designated a "civil rights icon" by the "liberal" wing of the power establishment and by the black elite.  As a Representative, he has been one of these Big Talk Liberals who doesn't really challenge the corrupt and oppressive power system but makes his career comfortably within it. He used taxpayer funds to buy the silence of at least one victim of his sexual depredations.

As a final arrogant act, he has designated his son, named after him, as his successor, like a King would do. (His son cut up his girlfriend with a knife. He got away with it, unsurprisingly, as even "unimportant" men get away with such "domestic dispute" violence in America.)

Franken, U.S. Senator from Minnesota, put the accusations against him into two categories: ones that were "simply not true," and others that he "remembers differently" from the women he groped or forcibly kissed, which was his "right as an entertainer," he explained to one woman he attempted to assault. In his Senate speech announcing his resignation (under pressure- 30 Democratic Senators demanded he resign his post) he made the pertinent comparison to his fate with that of Trump, elected president and in power, and Roy Moore, seemingly about to be elected to the Senate from the primitive, benighted state of Alabama. This led to media tongue-clucking against Franken. [1]

Trump has given his full-throated endorsement to the erstwhile cradle-robbing Moore, and the GOP has fallen into line behind Trump, as they invariably do, opening the Party's money spigots to shower Moore with funds.

Franken made a carefully parsed statement in his resignation speech: "Nothing I have done as a Senator, nothing, has brought dishonor on this institution" [his emphasis]. In other words, all his molestations occurred in his former capacity as a comedian. Molestations he did not acknowledge. (Which leaves a mystery in his version of things: why are you resigning?)

Most of the recently-outed sexual predators have been men of power in politics or the entertainment/media industries. Franken thus is a two-fer: former minor entertainment biz star, now also a former politician.

I shed no tear for Franken. Aside from the fact that as a pro-human, I resolutely oppose the two-party political cartel that monopolizes political power in the U.S. and that relentlessly promotes U.S. imperialism and corporate oligarchy, there is much to dislike about Franken in particular. I listened to hours of his radio show on the now-defunct Air America radio. He was a tub-thumping nationalist and military groupie, and often made reactionary pronouncements. His kind only looks good in comparison to the primitive reactionaries of the GOP (Gang Of Plunderers). There is no salvation through the Democratic Party, contrary to the undying, naive hopes placed in it by putative progressives.

Normal humans should take pleasure in any difficulties experienced by our rulers. Sit back and enjoy the show!

 A comedy genius in action: Al Franken grabs sleeping woman's breasts.

John Conyers: His Congressional career tragically cut short at just age 88. 

1]  Minnesota has a Democratic governor, who will appoint a temporary successor to Franken. Then there will be a contested election for the seat in November 2018, and a regular reelection again in November 2020. The Democratic Party's hold on Minnesota is somewhat tenuous. By contrast, Conyers Congressional district in Detroit is safely Democratic, as U.S. blacks vote by better than 90% for Democrats.

The U.S. Senate consists of 100 Senators, two from each of the 50 states. It is the least representative elected legislative body on the earth. The 20 least populous U.S. states have the same population as California, yet get 20 times the power in the Senate, having 40 senators to California's 2. (Most of these states are reactionary hotbeds. This is yet another way in which rightwing politics is structurally baked into the U.S. power system.) Senators serve 6 year terms. Every two years, a third of the Senate is up for election.

The House of Representatives has 435 seats, which are very roughly apportioned by population. The entire House is up for election every two years.

Tuesday, December 05, 2017

Trump Loves To Create Sensation- Media and Politicians Still Don't Get That

They keep looking for a "strategy" and parsing his words to divine "what he means." He's just jerking your chains, you dupes.

It's natural to try to read the intentions of the president of the U.S., a position with far too much power for the good of humanity. But Trump is mercurial and capricious, so trying to predict his future actions is a fool's errand. What needs to be done is to put barriers in the way of his taking destructive actions, such as launching a military attack on North Korea.

Trump dropped one of his mini-bombshells regarding North Korea on October 5th, saying this is "the calm before the storm." What could he have possibly meant by that cryptic, ominous statement?

He had just publicly rebuked his own Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson, for "wasting time" trying to arrange negotiations with North Korea over its nuclear weapons and ballistic missile programs, thus torpedoing that option for a resolution of the issue that avoids war. (Unless the U.S. simply accepts North Korea's new capabilities, which is almost unthinkable, given the aggressive nature of U.S. imperialism.) Asked what he meant by "the calm before the storm," Trump replied in typical high-handed fashion, "You'll see."

The next day, Trump's reliably sycophantic press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders, (spawn of one of the most loathsome U.S. politicians, Mike Huckabee), when asked by reporters desperate to learn the meaning of Trump's taunting tease, replied dismissively, "We're never going to say in advance what the President is going to do. You'll just have to wait and see," she lectured the roomful of reporters like a teacher talking down to a class of children.

Oh, great. So the "policy" of the Trump regime is to keep everyone guessing, always. That fits a Trump lifelong existential modus operandi, keeping other people psychologically off-balance. That in turn is part and parcel of his hyper-aggressive, solipsistic personality.

It's not an accident that Trump's allies have been gangsters (including Russian ones) and political gangsters like Roy Cohn, one of the most malign creatures who ever existed in the interstices of the U.S. power structure. From his work as a key henchman of Senator Joseph McCarthy, to his role in the murderous inquisition against the Rosenbergs, scapegoated for "causing" the Korean War (according to the judge who sentenced them to death, Irving Kaufman, whom the New York Times spent years running puff pieces on, slathering on thick layers of treacly propaganda to create a false reputation in a smarmy attempt to rescue the judge from deserved opprobrium) to his operations as a political fixer and obstructer of justice in New York courts, Roy Cohn left a trail of social wreckage and slime behind him. A raving homophobe in public, he was a homosexual libertine in private who ultimately died, ironically and perhaps with poetic justice, of AIDS, apparently acquired sexually.

There is a saying: Birds of a feather flock together. Likewise, pathological personalities clump together, forming nodes and knots of social pathology within a society, to destructive effect.

But since when are the politics of an empire founded on the twin pillars of slavery and genocide ever not anti-human? At least with Trump, there isn't the mask of benignity, as with his predecessor, The Drone Assassin and Perfecter of the Surveillance State. Ogres like Trump are perfect grist for the Democratic Party's "we're the lesser of two evils" mill, that political extortion racket they use to "force" progressives and decent people to vote for them. So the two-party political cartel continues its malign monopoly of power, preventing any real reform of the vicious U.S. system. (They won't even convict a single cop for murdering an African-American citizen, no matter how egregious the circumstances. THAT is a country that is incorrigible! And after a mass murderer gunned down 58 people and wounded or caused injuries to another nearly 500 in Las Vegas, the topic of gun control can only be broached gingerly.)

There is supposedly a Chinese curse, "May you live in interesting times." Well we sure do.

Saturday, December 02, 2017

THE UNTOUCHABLES: Known Sexual Predators With Immunity

George H.W. Bush, ex-president of the U.S. Spends his retirement grabbing women's asses and making the same bad joke every time to his victims. ("My favorite magician is David Copafeel." Hilarious.)

Clarence "Silent Cal" Thomas, Supreme Court Justice for life. Complained about imaginary pubic hair on his coke, among numerous other harassing comments. After a list of the porn videos he rented was made public, Congress leapt into action, passing a law banning release of people's video rental history. Politicians, protect thyselves.
The president who nominated Thomas for the highest court in the U.S.? George H. W. Bush! Nice!

Donald J. "Jackass" Trump, President of the United States of America. Rapist, molester, boastful grabber of women's private parts. Now is pretending video of his boasting of his crimes wasn't him.

Friday, December 01, 2017

Hurricane Harvey Weinstein Continues to Blow Powerful Men Off Their High-Status Pedestals

Matt Lauer- grossly overpaid (over $20 million per year) morning TV entertainer. Fired by NBC after years of covering up his sexual abuse, including at least one rape, just as Variety and the New York Times were about to expose him.

Charlie Rose- smarmy chatster of U.S. imperialist apparatchiks and nomenklatura members.
Creep pretends his gross sexual harassment was welcomed by his victims, claims "shared feelings." Canned by PBS, CBS, Bloomberg News. Finally, relief from his unctuous propaganda!

John Conyers- superannuated Democratic Party hack and "progressive" burlesque performer. (He's 88 years old and as of this writing is belligerently refusing to resign, despite calls to do so by his party "leader," House Minority Leader and multimillionaire Nancy Pelosi, and by the Speaker of the House, Republican Paul Ryan.)

Russell Simmons- music biz mogul who like all music biz moguls is a capitalist super-exploiter. (How do you think they get so rich?) Stepping down from his company after second rape victim names him.

Mark Halperin- hack "political analyst" who indoctrinates the public with corporate political outlook. Purveyor or garbage "election analyses" that ignore reality of voter suppression, crooked voting machines, etc. Discarded by media and disgraced for now. Spawn of Kissinger accomplice Morton Halperin.

Michael Orestes- former reactionary propagandist at New York Times, then propaganda overseer at NPR. After being protected for years by fellow male bosses, forced out.

The "A Prairie Home Companion" guy, what's his name. NPR dumps his shtick. (Oh yeah, Garrison Keillor. Weird name, hard to remember. Shouldn't that be Garrison Fort?)

Oh, too much schadenfreude for one day! I'm overdosing!

Still untouched: known rapist and groper, the second Teflon President, Donald J. "Jackass" Trump. Remarkable.

BONUS CONTRIBUTION TO "THE CONVERSATION" ABOUT SEXUAL HARASSMENT: Nobody needs to be "trained" to not rape, grab people's breasts/asses/vaginas, forcibly kiss, expose oneself, etc. They already know it's wrong- that's why they do it in secret, lie about it, intimidate and threaten victims into silence and pay them hush money ("settlements" with "non-disclosure agreements") etc. Instead here's a simple therapy treatment that is quick and immediately effective:

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Power Slips From Iron Grip of Zimbabwean Dictator Robert Mugabe

The 93-year-old, superannuated but seemingly ageless dictator of Zimbabwe, Robert Mugabe, has taken a sudden fall from power. It happened in a day.

Mugabe, who has ruled that sad African land since 1980, made a fatal misstep. He fired his vice president, who was favored by the military, in order to grease the skids for his 52 year old wife, Grace Mugabe (derisively nicknamed "Gucci Grace" for her lavish shopping sprees) to succeed him.

But the men with the guns balked. And as Mao Zedong crudely said, "political power flows out of the barrel of a gun." One must control the men with the guns.

The head of the army made a surprising public pronouncement, warning of a "coup." Pretty daring. Apparently the coup was already arranged, as he wasn't fired and jailed by Mugabe. Next thing you know, the military seized control, for the good of the nation, naturally. They denied their coup was a coup, disingenuously, announcing that Mugabe was "safe." (Safe in a gilded cage, that is.) Thus the reign of Mugabe comes to a sudden, inglorious end.

Mugabe was a despot from the get-go. One of the first things he did after the ouster of the previous white racist regime (when the country was called Rhodesia) was destroy the other armed revolutionary party and militia that had battled the ancien regime, ZAPU. Mugabe's ZANU-PF became in effect a one-party dictatorship.

Over the years, Mugabe pursued highly destructive economic policies, and scapegoated the small number of white farmers in the country, unleashing mobs to seize their lands and terrorize them. This racist, lawless assault was justified with the standard "revolutionary" cant.

In Zimbabwe, we saw another sad example of the destruction of revolutionary ideals after a successful revolution. George Orwell's novel, Animal Farm, is an allegory of this process, modeled on the Soviet experience. (A similar loss of ideals can be seen in non-Marxist-inspired revolutions, like the American revolution.)

The question now is, what does the military do going forward? Is their plan to restore the cashiered vice president? Stage elections? So far the opposition party, much oppressed by Mugabe, hasn't had much to say. This seems like a successor struggle within ZANU_PF, with the military in effect vetoing Mugabe's choice of his wife as the next president. Either they will bend Mugabe to their will and have him agree to a successor of their choice, or he'll be "retired" "for reasons of health."

Those are my predictions.

Saturday, November 04, 2017

Chief Manhattan Prosecutor Cyrus Vance Jr. is a Criminal Who Is About To Be Reelected Unopposed In Soviet-Style Election

That's right, Cyrus Vance (Jr.) is the only name on the ballot. People wanting someone else will have to write in a name. Needless to say, it will be impossible for anyone else to win this race in a borough of New York City of about 1.6 million inhabitants.

Vance has taken bribes in two major cases in return for quashing prosecutions, thus committing another crime on two occasions, obstruction of justice. The bribes were in the form of hefty campaign contributions. These are just the two cases that have come to light so far. There's a good chance there are others.  I'll just review the details in brief, as the cases are thoroughly delineated in separate pieces in establishment media organs. [1]

The first case, from 2012, came to light just last month. It involved major fraud by two of Donald Trump's (you've heard of him) children, Ivanka and Donald Jr. Prosecutors in Vance's office, the Manhattan District Attorney, spent a year building a powerful case against the duo. The evidence was damning and conclusive, including emails clearly showing criminal intent and knowledge of wrongdoing. Yet Vance overruled all the prosecutors on every level, ruling there was no case there. This happened after Trump Sr. sent one of his fixer-lawyers to "discuss" the case with Vance, after the failure of hired criminal defense attorneys to get prosecutors under Vance to drop the case, and the fixer-lawyer made some campaign contributions to Vance. (After the media spotlight was shone on Vance, he returned the money.)

The second case has been exposed with the explosion of coverage of movie mogul Harvey Weinstein's 30-year career of sexual molestations, harrassments, and assaults, including rape anf forced fellatio. In 2015, Police made a case against Weinstein, including a recording of him admitting to assaulting an Italian model by grabbing her breast. Weinstein sent two lawyers to lobby Vance- Vance’s former law partner Elkan Abramowitz, plus a former prosecutor. One of them gave Vance $10,000 days after the meeting. A third Weinstein attorney, David Boies, contributed to Vance. Vance duly refused to prosecute the case.

On October 11 of this year, Vance was forced to justify rejecting the police case against Weinstein, which included a recording made by the Italian model he molested on that particular occasion and whom the NYPD wired for sound for a return visit to Weinstein the day after the assault: "I as the DA have to be guided by the evidence by the elements of the crime..." sayeth the Upright Prosecutor of Wrongdoing. "If we had a case my experts thought we could prosecute we would have." "If my experts felt we could have prosecuted we would have." Thus spake Vance. (WNYC radio broadcast.)

Really Cyrus? But Vance OVERRULED ALL his prosecutors in the Trump case! Weren't they "experts"? And prosecutors can ALWAYS PROSECUTE, whether the charges are valid or not. Given how many innocent people they frame up, and how often they harass political activists that way and "neutralize" those they convict and imprison, his statement is particularly cynical. Vance himself targeted and imprisoned Occupy Wall Street activist Cecily McMillan for the crime of having her breast groped by a violent cop. Vance invokes "the law."

After Weinstein's shit hit the fan, Vance had the gall to urge people to come forward! One very big reason they DON'T is that guys like HIM don't PROSECUTE the cases!

He also struck a Nobler Than Thou pose: "I was sickened (by the surreptitiously recorded police tape of Weinstein in the Italian model case) but at the end of the day we operate by law not by public opinion," he sniffed self-righteously. See, he's better than us! He won't be moved by our outrage! (Cash contributions to his campaign coffers are another matter.) Those in power habitually hide behind the skirts of Mother Law to justify their base actions.

While Vance may have a soft spot for rich and privileged criminals, he's plenty tough on political dissidents rounded up by police for protesting things the power establishment doesn't want protested. Dissidents assaulted by the police especially come in for Vance's brand of "justice" and "rule of law." For example, the aforementioned case of Occupy New York Movement participant Cecily McMillan. A sadistic NYPD cop with a history of violence and brutality against defenseless citizens, Grantly Bovell, assaulted her at the Occupy site in Manhattan, grabbing her breasts from behind and mauling them. She instinctively and blindly swung her elbow backwards, catching the thug cop in the head, slightly bruising him. As is the usual practice when American police assault people, the victim was charged with assault on a police officer, a serious felony in a police state like the U.S. A jury of pro-government stooges duly convicted McMillan, ignoring the evidence, including medical records and photos of her injuries at the hands of her attacker-in-Blue. She was sentenced to 6 months in the infamous, Dickensian New York City jail complex, Rikers Island, plus 5-years of probation during which time she is forbidden from engaging in political activity on pain of reimprisonment, (Yet another in an endless stream of thousands and thousands of examples of the cynical hollowness of all the breast-beating propaganda proclaiming the U.S. to be positively the acme of "freedom.")

McMillan had simply been sitting among the crowd of protesters in Zuccotti Park (named after a member of the city's permanent ruling class) when she was singled out for attack and arrest, probably because she was a regional organizer for Young Democratic Socialists of America.

McMillan was denied access to an attorney, supposedly "guaranteed" by the U.S. Constitution and Supreme Court rulings- so much for "rule of law." Apparently "law" is merely a club for those in power to beat the rest of us into submission with, not something they have to obey themselves. She was also denied timely medical care for her cop-inflicted injuries. [2]

Add false prosecution to the indictment of Vance, along with bribery and obstruction of justice.

As for the background of the criminal Vance; Vance's father was Cyrus Vance, a made-member of the nomenklatura. Among other things, Vance Sr. was Secretary of State under President James Earl Carter. That is, until he resigned. He resigned because he objected to Carter's "hostage rescue" mission, a raid on the U.S. Embassy in Tehran, iran, in which a slaughter of up to 1,000 Iranians was anticipated to forcibly spring the embassy personnel who were seized after the U.S. ignored Iran's warnings and gave sanctuary to the fleeing, murderous dictator the Shah, whom Carter had earlier politically blessed as a "great friend." Vance Sr. had certain scruples, but apparently Vance Jr. didn't inherit any.

1]  See "How Ivanka Trump and Donald Trump, Jr., Avoided A Criminal indictment," The
New Yorker, October 4, 2017; "Why Didn’t the Manhattan D.A. Cyrus Vance Prosecute the Trumps or Harvey Weinstein?,"  The New Yorker, October 13, 2017; "Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance needs a better explanation for why he didn’t charge Harvey Weinstein," Slate, October 11, 2017; "NYPD Was Ready to Arrest Harvey Weinstein in 2015 After Model Said She Was Groped," The Daily Beast, October 10, 2017.

2]  McMillan was far from the only victim of police violence. Barack "The Drone Assassin" Obama had the Federal government arrange coordinated, simultaneous "crackdowns" in various cities with Occupy Protests. A Marine veteran was almost murdered in Oakland by police who fired a tear gas canister at his head, and then attacked fellow protesters trying to come to his aid. In New York City, according to an eyewitness:

JEN WALLER: It is when we speak out against the 1 percent and defy them by fighting for public space that we are brutalized. On Saturday night as I simply sat in a park, I was violently arrested with my friends and watched as bloodthirsty cops stomped on their faces, knelt on their necks, pulled them by their hair, and slammed them into windows. I watched as one friend was treated as a battering ram as they carried him into an MTA bus, slamming his head on every step and seat as they went along. I watched as a young woman’s rib was broken, as she hyperventilated, convulsed and seizured in the middle of the street. ["Exclusive: OWS Activist Cecily McMillan Describes Seizure, Bodily Injuries in Arrest by NYPD," Democracy Now, March 23, 2012.] See also "Cecily McMillan's guilty verdict reveals our mass acceptance of police violence," Guardian (UK), 5 May, 2014, which has interesting details such as the fact that thug cop Bovell didn't even remember which of his eyes McMillan allegedly injured. And if it fact it was injured, it was accidental and provoked by his assault.

One small additional note, pertinent to the notion that if only more racial minorities were in U.S. police forces, things would be much different: Bovell is African-American. I'm not implying that police departments shouldn't be integrated and more representative generally of the populace, just that that is no panacea, absent the kind of systemic political and cultural changes needed in U.S. policing.

"I'm holding a number in my hand for the size of the "contribution" 
that will make your case go away. Guess what it is..."

 Like father, Not like son.


Wednesday, November 01, 2017

Uzbek Murders 8 Bicyclists in New York City: Will Trump Now Ban Everyone From Uzbekistan from Entering the U.S.?

According to the logic of his various travel bans, surely he must, to "keep America safe!"

An Uzbek rented a pickup truck and used it to careen down a bicycle path in Manhattan, mowing down bicyclists, 8 of whom died. After about a mile of mayhem, he crashed into a school bus, whereupon a cop shot him and he was taken to hospital, where he is under guard. This vicious asshole lived in Paterson, New Jersey, and decided he needed to kill some people in New York. He will go unnamed by me as he is not worthy of that recognition. There's a good chance some or all of his victims opposed the U.S. invasion of Iraq, for example, or Israeli oppression of Palestinians, two of the Islamofascists' grievances.

In addition to the deaths, there were a dozen injuries. Five of the dead were Argentine visitors, one was German or Belgian, depending on the media report, and two were Americans. So the ISIS-manqué did a mediocre job of killing Americans. The attacker has a wife and two young children, whose well-being is apparently of little or no concern to him, since he has effectively abandoned them and they will be objects of opprobrium if not worse, and without a breadwinner for the family. He also must be indifference to the crap his Muslim neighbors will now endure.

The politicians and police have branded the attack terrorism, because he presumably had a "political" motive. (The use of a vehicle to commit homicide is one of ISIS' suggested ways to harm people in its exhortations to launch attacks, and was used previously in Germany, France, and Britain. A note in Arabic in the truck hailed ISIS, proclaiming obviously falsely that it would live "forever. Nothing in the universe does that. The killer was an Uber driver with 1,400 trips under his belt. Uber has swung into action and banned him from now on. Good idea.) [1]

Whatever fear is generated by this "terrorism" is being generated by the incessant media drum-beating on it, with the same scant details reiterated over and over, and politicians stirring the pot with exaggerated, doleful statements. One of the worst is the Mayor, Bill de Blasio, who has been positively maudlin. To hear him tell it, every New Yorker has just courageously endured an unspeakable ordeal yet remains unbowed and unbroken. (I'm not exaggerating, that is how he's talking.) In terms of the scale of tragedy, this is the same as a bad traffic accident! (And the Uzbek sure had a fearsome arsenal: a paint gun, a pellet gun, and some knives. Terrifying! Luckily a "hero" cop shot the guy. A cop so "humble," related the police commissioner, that he feels he was just doing his job! Amazing!)

As for what Trump should do, if he follows his own "logic,"  just banning all Uzbeks from entering the U.S. won't be "tough" enough. This man is a permanent legal resident and entered the U.S. in March of 2010. So to be truly "safe," the U.S. must DEPORT all Uzbeks.

However, a Muslim from any country could become a "terrorist." Shouldn't all Muslims be banned? After all, "we don't know who these people are!" as Our President has repeatedly pointed out.

But the U.S. loves religion, so it doesn't want to "discriminate" against Muslims. Nor are U.S. Federal judges showing an inclination to disregard U.S. anti-religious-discrimination law. So it needs to ban all people from countries where there are Muslims. That would be most nations on earth.

But I'm sure Trump, being a reasonable and sensible man, will instead call for some weak half-measure. Actually he'll probably just use this to argue for the necessity of his latest ban, which is irrelevant to this incident (he's never banned people from Uzbekistan entering the U.S., and as I said, the bicycle-butcher has been here since 2010) just as most of the gun control proposals are irrelevant after each headline-grabbing mass shooting. (Most shootings involve "legitimate" gun purchasers using legally-obtained weapons, so more background checks or background checks on gun show purchases or banning whatever are irrelevant. Banning buttstocks that increase the rate of fire, and large capacity ammo magazines, would probably lower the number of casualties in mass shootings, but would not eliminate them. But the U.S. Congress won't even do that, and the two-thirds of U.S. states controlled by the GOP have been removing restrictions on carrying guns in public, even allowing them on college campuses.)

Trump took absolutely no action and called for no new laws or regulations whatsoever after the recent Las Vegas gun massacre that killed 58 people at a concert and wounds and injuries to about 500. So far, in the aftermath of the NYC attack on bicyclists, he's responded by ordering intensification of scrutiny of foreign visitors under his "extreme vetting" regime. I suppose now it's "super-extreme vetting," "vetting like you've never seen before, believe me." Totally irrelevant to this case, as the perpetrator was a legal resident of the U.S. since 2010. He's also calling for an end to the particular visa program under which the Uzbek got his green card to live in t he U.S. In other words, punish thousands of completely innocent people. That's a good response, Trump.

As a measure of how irrelevant this is, ISIS hasn't even claimed responsibility for the attack! Apparently they find it disappointing. ISIS is quick to take credit for any mayhem it plausibly can, whether it was their operation or not.
The local media are reporting that the culprit is "bragging" and "unrepentant" and "unapologetic" from his hospital bed. They were expecting an apology?

One thing this shows, which no media notes because it conflicts with their desire for threat inflation (which is also a prime motivation of politicians and secret policemen) is this shows how WEAK ISIS is. ISIS DID NOT mount this attack. It did not infiltrate operatives into the U.S. It has no sleeper cells in the U.S. (I'm sure with ISIS being squeezed out of its territorial conquests, it would have activated them if it did.) It did not even train this jackass. He's being described as a "lone wolf" attacker by people like New York State Governor Andrew "Son of Maximum Unction" Cuomo. What kind of powerful organization is that? [On the afternoon of Nov. 1, a day after the attack, news broke that the FBI was interested in a second man in the attack. Also the attacker was identified in a previous terrorism investigation but wasn't the "subject" of that investigation. I wonder if they planted tiny cameras in his home, like they do to non-violent dissidents.]

As for the Attack Of The Uzbek, the FBI has seized charge of the New York investigation. The BBC announced that the FBI will be reaching out to other agencies, including abroad, to learn about this man's movements and contacts. BBC, the British government's global propaganda arm, said for sure this would be a multi-agency investigation. They forgot to mention the most important sources of data about people and their connections: the NSA and  its junior partners in the "Five Eye" countries, which includes GCHQ in the UK. The FBI has free access to the NSA's stupendous database of the world's Internet, telephonic, wire, and other traffic, including records from license plate readers and surveillance cameras. Using facial recognition software, they can search for places the man has been in the past.

The FBI will search the government's database of airline travel (they know everywhere you've flown- they have that automatically, oh, and all your financial and medical records too) and arrest records in the U.S. and abroad. Cooperating foreign police and secret police agencies will cough up whatever is in their files on the man. (Unless it would reflect badly on them. Like if he was once an informer, or worse, for one of them.) By 11 AM the next day the New York City Police (NYPD) informed the press at a "news conference" that they knew the killer exited the George Washington Bridge at 2:43 PM when their license plate capture system recorded his vehicle, and a surveillance camera outside the Holland Tunnel recorded the beginning of the attack.

Does living in an omniscient police state stop "terrorism"? Does it make people safer? It certainly doesn't make victims of state political persecution safer. Already the BBC's Uzbek correspondent has reported that the secret police there are expected to use this opportunity to increase the already severe repression in that nation.

The "terrorists" give the secret police of every nation just what they want: an excuse to tighten their chokehold on the lives of the citizens. In Kenya, the regime of the "democratic" dictator Uhuru Kenyatta, who just got himself "reelected" "president" unopposed, runs death squads under the tutelage of the U.S., Britain, and Israel, that murder hundreds of people a year. This is known as "counter-terrorism." Watch the excellent Al-Jazeera documentary exposing this ongoing campaign of extreme criminality by four states, which has been totally blacked out by the establishment media of the culprit countries. Which means those media are accomplices to state terrorism and murder and by rights should be held criminally culpable.  [2]  

Al-Jazeera is run by the government of Qatar, which is currently under blockade by Saudi Arabia, its Persian Gulf lackeys, Egypt, with the U.S. piling on. The main demands of the Saudi -led assault on Qatar, publicly endorsed by Donald "Pussy-Grabber" Trump, are three: adopt the same hostile posture towards iran as these states have; stop "supporting terrorism"- no explanation of what they're referring to; and shut down Al-Jazeera.

Al-Jazeera isn't hated by only the Saudis. Al-Jazeera has been a thorn in the side of the U.S. since 2001, for reporting things the U.S. doesn't want reported. The U.S. has responded with verbal attacks, branding it "terrorist propaganda," and with physical attacks, bombing Al-Jazeera offices at least four times, kidnapping its staff, one of whom was imprisoned at the Guantanamo Bay torture center for years, where the U.S. tried to force him to agree to be a U.S. spy inside Al-Jazeera, and launching cyberattacks on it. Tony Blair, the loathsome, self-righteous, oleaginous former British prime minister who conspired with Bush the Younger in the invasion of Iraq, had to talk Bush out of bombing Al-Jazeera's main headquaters inside Qatar! Where the U.S. has military bases! Talk about being drunk on power. I guess Bush found a substitute for alcohol and cocaine.

So no surprise that the Saudis are demanding Al-Jazeera be killed. It reports real news from all over the Arab and Muslim worlds, much of which the totalitarian, hyper-repressive Saudi regime finds threatening. (Just about anything human is threatening to them.)

 Oh, by the way, Kenya is "an ally in the fight against terrorism." That is to say, it invaded Somalia to help out the U.S., which prompted Al-Shabab, the Somali Islamofascist organization, to counterattack inside Kenya, against "soft targets" like the shopping mall and university attacks. Notice the pathological symbiosis between Islamofascist fanatics and state terrorists. Each creates the conditions for the perpetuation of the other. Repression breeds resistance, which leads people with no other options except surrender and acceptance of random state murders and other forms of oppression, or joining up with the only armed opposition available to them, the Islamofascists. The continued existence of armed terrorist groups gives the regimes excuses to increase political repression and murder pesky dissidents and political opponents, along with "potential" or "likely" or "identified" "terrorists." That latter category, in the case of Kenya, is supplied by U.S. and UK "intelligence," and those named are duly "eliminated" by one of several Kenyan government death squads.

As Dick Cheney said, "we have to go to the dark side," or in the words of CIA goons like Cofer Black, they've "taken the gloves off." Which is to say, governments are flat-out murdering people they don't like. In Kenya, this has happened in cases after the government has taken people to court, where they were acquitted. On such thin "evidence" the government then proceeds to murder the victims, because in their minds, suspicion is certainty. Not suspicion of actual crimes either, but of possible future crimes.

Now, there's nothing to stop the Kenyan government from setting up internment camps for people with "radical views." Those are the so-called "terrorists" that Western "intelligence agencies" and the Kenyan regime have "identified."

Between the totalitarian Islamofascist rebels on the one hand, and the repressive "democracies" and make-believe democracies like Kenya trying to crush them (and eliminate dissent in the process) on the other, a normal human being must say: a pox on both their houses.

1]  A fellow Uzbek described the 29-year-old killer to the BBC as a malcontented loner. Apparently ISIS propaganda provided him with an explanation for his unhappiness, and ideas for discharging his rage on random strangers. The attack occured around 3 PM on Tuesday October 31. If this pathetic, malevolent jerk had waited a few hours, he could have attacked the annual Halloween parade just north of where he attacked. It's claimed a million people were there. He could have disrupted fun for a million people. Or in a few days this Sunday there's the annual New York Marathon, a major event that such an attack could potentially wreck. Yet the city mayor, Clinton machine politician Bill deBlasio, has been carrying on as if it's 9/11 all over again. (De Blasio insisted on hogging the mic at a "news conference" the next morning with the Governor, the city police and fire commissioners, the boss of the New York City FBI field office, and other government poohbahs.) So in terms of disrupting life in the city, this nasty fool was inept. Most of the disruption has come from the reaction of "the authorities."

The BBC calls the Uzbek truck attack "the main news" today, thus continuing the Western media's bad practice of inflating the significance of violent acts by people who self-align with ISIS, encouraging more attacks, and adding to ISIS' stature. Not only is it disproportional to the significance of these events, it makes the "terrorism problem" WORSE. And of course the U.S. media is waving the attack like a bloody flag. The "coverage" of what this one unhappy asshole did is nonstop, repetitive, and way overdone.

Here's some perspective: every year, about 250 pedestrians are killed in New York City by motor vehicles, plus about 50 bicyclists. So this is 8 more. It makes no difference to the victims whether it was accidental or deliberate or what the motive of the driver might have been. Dead is dead. Tens of thousands of people a year die in traffic in the U.S. The same goes for "terrorist" knife attacks. Many thousands of people a year get stabbed. Why is an "ordinary" knife attack yawn-inducing, but a "terrorist" one an occasion for near-hysteria? No good reason. The bad reasons are political: To induce the population to submit to police state measures and acquiesce in endless wars abroad. Those wars, by the way, are the motivation for the "homeland" attacks using trucks and knives and occasionally guns. That doesn't necessarily mean ending the military role against Islamofascism is the correct course of action. It means that it is disingenuous and dishonest to pretend the attacks are acts of inexplicable madness. (The Uzbek has already been labeled a "madman" by NYC radio station WCBS. His motives are comprehensible. To understand is not to condone.)

2]  "Al Jazeera Investigates - Inside Kenya's Death Squads," on

Monday, October 16, 2017

Rex Tillerson Tacitly Confirms Again That He Called Trump "A Fucking Moron" By Refusing To Deny It

For a second time, when asked directly to his face if he called his boss, U.S. president Donald "Maximum Narcissist" Trump "a fucking moron" after Trump said he wanted to increase the U.S. nuclear weapons arsenal by ten times, U.S. Secretary of State Rex "Big Oil" Tillerson refused to deny it. That's as good as a confirmation. There is no reason on earth not to deny it if it isn't true.  Obviously NOT denying it only keeps the matter alive. (The remark wasn't made in Trump's presence.)

NBC originally reported the insult, and Tillerson was asked about it by a reporter immediately after that. Tillerson evaded the question. Later, a surrogate was trotted out to deny it.

Now, Tillerson just appeared on CNN and was asked again. Again he refused to answer, bloviating for several sentences about not "dignifying" the question by answering it, and other high-minded blather. A simple "no" would have put the matter to rest.

Apparently Tillerson has some kind of internal moral code that prevents him from telling a bald-faced lie, so instead he squirms and twists and implies a lie, denying without explicitly denying. Tillerson was an Eagle Scout as a boy, the top level in the Boy Scouts. That organization indoctrinates boys with a moralistic ideology. This may be a factor in Tillerson's unwillingness to flat-out lie, like his boss does as naturally as he breathes.

Trump, for his part, challenged Tillerson to an IQ test competition. No word on who Trump would appoint to officiate. Maybe Ivanka or Jared Kushner or Donald Jr.

Let me tell you, I have a very very HIGH IQ, BELIEVE Me!

One Cheer For Larry Flynt

Larry Flynt has paid for an ad in the Washington Post offering $10 million for information leading to the impeachment of Donald Trump. The ad says "it's every American's duty to remove Trump before it's too late." It calls Trump, accurately "the most powerful moron in history" who has told "hundreds of bare-faced lies," an indisputable fact. (Trump's own hand-picked Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson, has called Trump "a fucking moron" in private.) [1]

So far, I've only heard this reported on the BBC, the British government's propaganda network. Why the silence on all these U.S. stations that are trying to get rid of Trump? They surely noticed the ad in the Washington Post, one of the premiere U.S. newspapers at the top of the media prestige pyramid and a major billboard for elite opinion and "news."

Flynt made his fortune as proprietor of Hustler magazine, the most vulgar by far of the former Big Three U.S. porno mags, Playboy and Penthouse being the other two. All three are now faded relics of their former selves thanks to the endless supply of free sexual content on the Internet. I don't think it is fair to label Playboy at least "pornography," unless one considers photos of naked women obscene per se.

Flynt was shot and rendered a paraplegic by a would-be assassin some years ago. This was after he offered a $1 million reward for information on the JFK assassination. After he was shot, that effort came to nothing with the publication of a piece of nonsensical disinformation on the assassination in Hustler.

 Let me explain something; if I were really a MORON, I wouldn't have figured out that 
could grab women's pussies and get away with it! Right? Right? Gimme a break!

1] "Have dirt that could impeach Trump? Larry Flynt will pay you $10 million", Washington Post article with links to the ad, October 14, 2017.

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

New York Times Spiked Story of Harvey Weinstein's Sexual Predations for 13 Years

That's an absolutely cogent headline about a newsworthy story that you won't see anywhere. (Just another example of why this is called Taboo Truths.)

A Times reporter had the story about Weinstein's sexual abuses way back in 2004. Her editors told her it was "unimportant" and refused to publish it. As an employee of that bourgeois organ that arrogates to itself the power to decide what news is "fit to print," the reporter had no right to publish elsewhere, in any form. [1]

Something that IS important to the NY Times is advertising revenue. Anyone who gets the Friday paper finds the "Arts and Leisure" section crammed with very expensive full-page ads for movies.  Same on Saturdays. Movie studios, including Weinstein's, are major advertisers. And Weinstein's movies always got positive "reviews" in the paper. (Hey, one hand washes the other.)

Meanwhile other parts of the media have been throwing up a smokescreen for the Times. The U.S. Government radio propaganda network NPR, for example, has been pushing the line that the story couldn't be revealed until now because victims wouldn't go on the record (as if the establishment media never uses anonymous sources!), that "rumors" couldn't be "verified," the story couldn't be nailed down, fear of being sued for libel, blah blah. (Funny, fear of libel didn't stop the NBC sitcom "30 Rock" from making a joke about Weinstein's sexual coercions using his name some years back.) The fact is, Weinstein would have been incredibly reckless to sue for libel as he would have risked some of his numerous victims being convinced by defense lawyers to testify at trial.

I predict his current bluster about suing the NY Times for libel is an empty threat. Two of his lawyers have already quit working for him- that's how untenable his position is, after 30 years of various molestations and attempts at sexual extortion. The extortion was the old "casting couch" trope. Young actress starting a career- the price of an admission ticket to Hollywood is sexually serving some fat, ugly Hollywood "power player," whether a studio exec, a director - Alfred Hitchcock notoriously killed the career of actress  for refusing his sexual demand- or a producer, or even an agent.
Today a report has emerged that Weinstein raped women. And 13 women in this report attested to their physical fear of the big fat Weinstein. Weinstein is denying he ever raped anyone- but he's not threatening a ibel suit. (Gee, I wonder why.) [2]

The movie business, and the music business too, are two extremely sexist industries in America. This has been true for years. Sexual abuse and coercion are just one manifestation of this deeply ingrained sexism. Male dominance of the industries is a visible manifestation of the sexism. The large disparity is pay for male vs. female actresses is another.

The board of directors of The Weinstein Company has fired Harvey Weinstein. And his wife is leaving him. Ohh, the humanity!

Harvey is simultaneously denying he assaulted anyone, claiming whatever happened all those 30 years was "consensual," while simultaneously jetting off to Europe (it is claimed) for "treatment" for his sexual problem. What problem? You just said it was all consensual?

Picking up this rock has uncovered another loathsome character- Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance, Jr. Vance blocked a criminal prosecution of Weinstein after the police obtained incriminating evidence. They had one of his victims return, wired for sound, and Weinstein was recorded making self-incriminating statements prompted by the victim.

This is the second case revealed in the last few days of Vance using his power to commit an obstruction of justice. He also overruled his staff who had prepared a case of criminal fraud against two of Trump's offspring, Ivanka and Donald Jr. Vance took bribes from Trump's lawyer in the form of campaign contributions in that case.

This is the same guy who persecutes Occupy Movement people like Cecily McMillan. And he's going to be reelected next month, running unopposed in a Soviet-style "democratic election."

The Oh-So-Sexy HARV!
Isn't he a dreamboat??

1]  WINS radio, New York City, reported the "unimportant" verdict of the NYT's editors (October 9, 6:04 AM).  And the reporter went on CNN to talk about the Times killing her story. The Times editors are now doing damage control, one claiming amnesia, another saying she only had one source- an obvious lie. The Times is also scrambling to cover its ass by running numerous stories about the matter, even an entire story about Tom Hanks that they somehow connected to Weinstein, just because Hanks is a famous actor and he has an opinion. The Times is eager to limit the reputational damage to just Weinstein and protect the movie industry.

2] Hedren has spoken about this experience. And Alfred Hitchcock makes Harvey Weinstein look like the epitome of a chivalrous gent. See  "Hitchcock? He was a psycho: As a TV drama reveals his sadistic abuse, Birds star Tippi Hedren tells how the director turned into a sexual predator who tried to destroy her," Daily Mail (UK), December 21, 2012.

3]  "From Aggressive Overtures to Sexual Assault: Harvey Weinstein’s Accusers Tell Their Stories," New Yorker, October 10, 2017.

Saturday, October 07, 2017

A Trifecta of Trump Destructiveness

He sabotaged the attempts by his own Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson, former boss of oil giant ExxonMobil, to start up negotiations with North Korea, putting the U.S. on a collision course to possible nuclear war.

His EPA is gutting emissions standards for coal-fired power plants. This is signing a death warrant for people, and additional disease. (But to be fair, it only affects people who breathe air.) Scott Pruitt, Trump's hand-picked EPA boss, was formerly Oklahoma State Attorney General, from which post he waged relentless war on the EPA on behalf of oil and gas corporations who literally gave him his marching orders in explicit instructions. His 14 lawsuits against the EPA all failed in the Federal courts. Now he is destroying the EPA from within.

He issued regulations allowing companies with religious or "moral" objections to contraception to deny contraception coverage in their company health insurance plans. Keeping Women Barefoot and Pregnant in the 21th Century! That's Making America Great Again!

So the man in just a few days is threatening mass murder, thousands of cases of disease and death, and denying a basic human right to control one's own reproduction and protection from veneral diseases. Winning!

I have the BEST IDEAS, EVER!

Thursday, October 05, 2017

Turkish Tyrant Erdogan Creating Another Islamic Theocracy, In Turkey

To the list of states taken over by Islam, it's time to add Turkey.

Also add it to the list of repressive theocracies backed and armed to the teeth by the U.S., along with Saudi Arabia and the Persian Gulf sheikdoms in the orbit of Saudi Arabia. And then there's Pakistan. And Indonesia too, increasingly Islamist.

Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the incessantly power-grabbing ruler of that increasingly repressive land, has unilaterally changed the curriculum in Turkish schools to create "a pious generation." A generation of religious zealots, like in Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Malaysia, Indonesia, and other lands.

The new curriculum eliminates natural selection (aka "Darwinism"), the science of the biological evolution of life on earth, for starters. It also teaches Jihad as a righteous defense of the nation, a "love of the homeland." (The obvious corollary- those who criticize Erdogan hate the homeland and thus are traitors.) No claiming that jihad means "inner struggle to be a better person" as those self-appointed Muslim spokesMEN- always men- in the West- maybe ONLY in the West, or at least mostly- insist is the "real" meaning of the term jihad, because Islam Is A Religion Of Peace, as their slogan goes. Perhaps they should trademark that so they can sue people like me who use it ironically.

To ensure "a pious generation," prayer rooms are to be installed in all schools.

Meanwhile, scholars are being tried as "terrorists," 180 journalists are in jail, part of 50,000 prisoners arrested as "coup plotters," along with another 150,000 people fired from their jobs as alleged co-conspirators in the recent failed military coup. Must be the largest conspiracy in history!

Erdogan, who fancies himself as a latter-day Sultan and dreams of recreating something like the Ottoman Empire, recently rammed through by referendum (with many irregularities and a campaign of suppression against opponents) a revision of Turkish constitutional provisions that grants greatly increased powers to himself. He has already spent several years unilaterally firing and replacing judges, police, and prosecutors, successfully squelching corruption cases against himself and his minions.

Recently some of Erdogan's bodyguards were indicted in the U.S. for assault. On a previous visit, Erdogan was offended by protesters yelling at him, so he sicced his goons on them, hospitalizing 9 protesters, as Erdogan watched. Now he complains that the American police failed to stop the protesters from yelling "insults" at him, clearly something he regards as intolerable. (What the police should have done, but didn't, was arrest Erdogan's "security" thugs.)

Turkey has only had a brief period of relative democracy and freedom. After the destruction of the Ottoman Empire in the wake of World War I (1914-1918), during which the Turks committed the Armenian Genocide, killing over a million Armenians (which emboldened Hitler to carry out the Holocaust: Hitler said "Who, after all, remembers the Armenian massacre?"), Turkey was ruled by the autocrat Ataturk, who forcibly secularized and modernized the country. Since Ataturk, torture and police abuses, and the repression of the Kurdish minority, have been near-constant feature of Turkish society. The military frequently seized overt control, with U.S. blessing.

With the successful political dominance of Erdogan's Islamist party, Turkey is back again to being a repressive place. A key NATO ally, which the U.S. has long relied on for military air bases, and during the Cold War as a spy base against the SovIet Union (including flying U-2 spy planes from Turkey), and now needs to wage its aerial campaign against ISIS in Syria, Turkey largely gets a pass from the U.S. Erdogan has leverage over the EU because Turkey is damning up the flood of Syrian refugees from trying to get to Europe, and the Europeans are desperate to continue that arrangement.

There is some friction over the fact that the U.S. is using Kurdish fighters as its army on the ground against ISIS in Syria and Iraq, while Turkey seeks to annihilate all armed Kurds. The U.S. agrees that one Kurdish resistance group, the PKK, is "terrorist," and tolerates Turkish airstrikes and artillery bombardment of the PKK in Syria. The U.S. has repeatedly used, abused, and double-crossed the Kurds, and is currently doing so again, deporting Kurds from the U.S., and opposing the creation of a Kurdish semi-state in northern Iraq. That's the gratitude the U.S. shows for the Kurds spilling their own blood to be the U.S.' army against ISIS.

Monday, September 25, 2017

Obama Would Have Assassinated North Korea's Rulers, If He Could Have

Did you know that Obama fully intended to "take out" the entire rulership of North Korea? Neither did I, until I came across this tidbit hidden in a New York Times article from March, moaning about the North Korean "threat" to the U.S.

Get a load of this paragraph, buried way down in a lengthy article, the 39th paragraph of a 47 paragraph long story, interspersed with charts, photos, and captions:

"With only a few months left in office, he [Obama] pushed aides for new approaches [to cripple North Korea's nuclear weapons and ballistic missile programs]. At one meeting, he declared that he would have targeted the North Korean leadership and weapons sites if he thought it would work. But it was, as Mr. Obama and his assembled aides knew, an empty threat: Getting timely intelligence on the location of North Korea’s leaders or their weapons at any moment would be almost impossible, and the risks of missing were tremendous, including renewed war on the Korean Peninsula." [My emphasis.] [1]

Incredibly, yet not surprisingly, the U.S. media ignored this. Apparently it was too insignificant to them to spread the news around.

Nor is it surprising, even if it's shocking, that Obama had such a determined intent to assassinate the rulers of a foreign nation. Obama proved himself a cold-blooded, ruthless killer, personally reviewing a "kill list" of people to be assassinated, every week. He murdered teenagers, children, old women. He gave the Saudi regime the weapons and intelligence it needed (and the assistance of the aerial refueling tanker planes of the U.S. Air Force to enable the jets the Saudis purchased from the U.S. to fly their missions) to reduce Yemen to a state of starvation, with a raging cholera epidemic. Unless Putin can add to Russia's body count in Syria, Barack "The Drone Assassin" Obama will go down in history as bloodier than the Russian autocrat that American media and the blaterariat elite like to call a "murderer." Certainly in terms of specific individuals targeted for assassination, Obama is leagues above Putin.

But what's more significant is the fact that North Korea really IS at risk from the U.S. It is NOT paranoid for the North Korean regime to feel great danger from the U.S. The U.S. is constantly practicing nuclear war attacks on North Korea. It just did it again, flying B-1 strategic bombers from Guam (a weapon originally designed to attack the Soviet Union with nuclear weapons) right up to North Korea's coast, escorted by U.S. fighter jets from Japan. So why isn't it defensive for North Korea to develop the means to strike those U.S. bases in japan and Guam? In fact, it was after an earlier U.S. "exercise" practicing nuking North Korea from Guan that NK "threatened" to fire a test missile in the vicinity of Guam, which it backed down from after Trump expectorated yet another of his blood-curdling threats to annihilate NK.

I'm no sympathizer of the North Korean regime, as should be clear to regular readers of this site. It is a hellish place to live, a nightmare of totalitarian regimentation, a hereditary oppressive cult system. But that doesn't mean it doesn't have the right of self-defense. It is obvious that the North Korean rulers are not suicidal. Vicious and malign, certainly. But not insane. They would never out of the blue initiate a nuclear attack on the U.S. or its allies, and it is completely dishonest of the U.S. government and media to pretend otherwise, which is the assumption underlying all the propaganda about the NK nuclear "threat."

Hereditary NK dictator Kim Jon-un just stated that the goal of their nuclear and missile programs is "equilibrium" with the U.S., that is, having enough of a balance in terms of destructive potential that the U.S. could no longer attack NK and not suffer unacceptable damage in return. In other words, deterrence. But that is unacceptable to the U.S. And the U.S. has gotten the UN Security Council to go along with that. Of the five permanent members of that body, the UK and France would follow U.S. wishes. Russia and China have no interest in a nuclear-armed North Korea, especially since it could prompt other nations in the region to acquire nuclear weapons (especially Japan and South Korea). Those with nuclear arms like their privilege, and the leverage it gives them. They all share an interest in keeping the nuclear "club" small.

So the U.S. has gotten the UN to impose 9 sets of sanctions on NK in 11 years. And it has sabotaged the North's missile and nuclear programs through various covert means, some of which is reported in the aforementioned NY Times article. With Trump, the U.S. stance has become openly belligerent and threatening. (And Secretary of State Rex Tillerson's recent assertion that the U.S. has no desire for "regime change" in NK was a smarmy lie.) But the fact of the matter is, North Korea has shown over the years that it cannot be intimidated. Which means that ratcheting up threats to annihilate it (Trump just did it again) will only escalate tensions and create a more dangerous situation. Kim Jon-un's regime has just stated that it will launch an attack if the U.S. is preparing to attack it!

There are two lines the U.S. government and media put out on negotiations, First is that the North Koreans are unreasonably refusing "to come to the negotiating table," All they have to do is show a "willingness" to negotiate. How? By completely halting their weapons development programs in advance of any negotiations! Well no wonder they aren't "willing to negotiate"! Surrender in advance, then we'll talk to you. I know what I would say to that, and it would involve salty language!

The other line is that past negotiations "didn't work" because the North Koreans never honored the deals. That is false, as Tim Shorrock of The Nation magazine has documented in a series of articles. The agreement the Clinton regime negotiated held for almost a decade. It broke down after the U.S. reneged on its part of the bargain, not delivering the agree amounts of fuel oil and failing to come through with the construction of two light-water nuclear reactors in NK. So the North Koreans restarted work on nuclear weapons development. [2]

What NK wants, as it has repeatedly stated, is a cessation of hostilities with the U.S. (a formal end to the Korean War, which has never been legally ended), an end to threatening U.S. military maneuvers, and more normal relations. Russia and China some months back proposed that the North freeze its weapons testing and the U.S. stop its practice attacks on North Korea to start negotiations. The U.S. brushed them off with contempt. Trump's hand-picked UN ambassador, Nikki Haley, the former GOP governor of the Confederate state of South Caroline, spat on the proposal as "insulting."  This after the U.S. ignored the Chinese-Russian repeated suggestion for 6 months. (By the way, South Carolina started the American Civil War. It was the first state to secede to form the Confederate States of America, and it initiated hostilities by laying siege to Fort Sumter, a U.S. military base in South Carolina. Haley is a hard-rightwing GOP politician from one of the most racist and reactionary states in the U.S.)

The U.S. hates to compromise just on principle- namely the principle that the strong shouldn't have to make any concessions to the weak. And its elites equate that principle with morality. Thus their genuine outrage when any weaker nation defies them. (Although when it comes to China, a nation almost as strong as the U.S. and on which much U.S. corporate profit depends as a source of cheaply-manufactured good, the U.S. isn't so brave.)

1]  "Trump Inherits a Secret Cyberwar Against North Korean Missiles," New York Times, March 4, 2017.

2]  See Shorrock's articles at The Nation.

Yeah, so I killed some folks. Wanna make something out of it?