All posts filed under: Essays

Why Vault 7 Tools Used by Private Contractors Shows US Intel Needs a Ground-Up Rebuild Part 2

So, let’s begin at the end. The fastest way to get things done on a geopolitical level has become hiring the private Intel and policy making professionals and letting them loose as experts to the mainstream media. Who is using chemical weapons on the Syrians? Who was involved in the Russian election interference and fake news during the 2016 elections? Who shot down MH-17 in 2014? Someone, somewhere had to be doing something, right?

Is Putin Incorruptible?

first published in 2014, this alternative analysis by Sharon Tennison, who recounts her personal experience of Putin, is still more than relevant As the Ukraine situation has worsened, unconscionable misinformation and hype is being poured on Russia and Vladimir Putin. Journalists and pundits must scour the Internet and thesauruses to come up with fiendish new epithets to describe both. Wherever I make presentations across America, the first question ominously asked during Q&A is always, “What about Putin?” It’s time to share my thoughts which follow: Putin obviously has his faults and makes mistakes. Based on my earlier experience with him, and the experiences of trusted people, including U.S. officials who have worked closely with him over a period of years, Putin most likely is a straight, reliable and exceptionally inventive man. He is obviously a long-term thinker and planner and has proven to be an excellent analyst and strategist. He is a leader who can quietly work toward his goals under mounds of accusations and myths that have been steadily leveled at him since he …

On Propaganda and Bias: An open-letter to the Royal Academy

Mr Christopher LeBrun, President Mr Charles Saumarez Smith, Secretary and Chief Executive Mr Tim Marlow, Director of Artistic Programmes Royal Academy of Arts, London 28 March 2017 Dear Sirs, I am writing to you to express my disappointment at the curatorial handling of the exhibition Revolution: Russian Art 1917-1932 currently on display at the RA. Whilst I am not an art historian or an expert in Russian art of the period, it is well known (and apparent just looking at the pieces on display at the RA) that the years covered by the exhibition represent a decisive and hugely fruitful moment in the development of Russian and European Modernism in which artists who came from a figurative tradition coexisted with avant-garde currents like the Russian Futurists or, later, the Constructivists, along with visionary figures like Kasimir Malevich, Wassily Kandinsky, El Lissitzky and others (whom you reference in the exhibition), besides, of course, developments in photography, theatre, dance, music and cinema. For this reason, I was incredibly excited to visit the RA exhibition, anticipating a serious, …

Fake News: The Unravelling of US Empire From Within

by Prof. John McMurtry, via Global Research Setting the Stage of the Press-President War US ruling ideology and Washington power have become unstuck as never before. A war of opposing certitudes and denunciations is waged day to day between the long-ruling US corporate media and the White House. Both continuously proclaim ringing recriminations of the other’s ‘fake news’. Over months they both portray each other as malevolent liars. US bully pulpits are now beyond show disagreements and successful media inquisitions of the past. Slanderous accusations long confined to vilifying the designated Enemy have crept into accusations of the President himself. ‘The Russians are coming’ is returning as the final recourse of smear to stop deviations from the global program of hugely profitable enemy hate and perpetual preparations for foreign war. The ruling big lies of the US money party and corporate globalization have divided into opposing camps. The Press and the President denounce each other non-stop on the public stage, while US dark state agents take sides behind the scenes. Fake news is the medium …

Left degeneracy plumbs new depths

by Patricia Greanville An appeal landed in my mailbox yesterday from I suppose the editors of Mother Jones or their marketing machine in conjunction with an outfit called Citizens United. The letter blares across the page something that can only be of interest to people suffering from a bizarre sense of priority, abysmal ignorance or clinical stupidity: Donald Trump just SLANDERED President Obama! The implication is that we should urgently do something about this. Aux armes! Further, in what we must accept as a compelling supporting rationale for action, the authors of the appeal, proving they do come from Lalaland, offer this laughable argument: …Donald Trump is wrong!!! President Obama has always been on our side. He’s been fighting to overturn Citizens United since Day One. With equal breathless dishonesty, the letter has the audacity to talk about defending “Obama’s legacy”, a supposedly sterling body of work apparently about to be wrecked by the horrid Trumpinator. By the standards of silliness this marks a new low; by the standards of left thinking, such as it …

Snow, Death, and the Bewildered Herd

by Edward Curtin, from Global Research Few people at this hour – and I refer to the time before the breaking out of this most grim war, which is coming to birth so strangely, as if it did not want to be born – few, I say, these days still enjoy that tranquility which permits one to choose the truth, to abstract one in reflection. Almost all the world is in tumult, is beside itself, and when man is beside himself he loses his most essential attribute: the possibility of meditating, or withdrawing into himself to come to terms with himself and define what it is he believes and what it is that he does not believe; what he truly esteems and what he truly detests. Being beside himself bemuses him, blinds him, forces him to act mechanically in a frenetic somnambulism.” Ortega Y Gasset – The Self and the Other As I write these words, the house is being buried in a snowstorm. Heavy flakes fall slowly and silently as a contemplative peace muffles …

A thought on Culture as an Integral Part of the Conditions of Existence

by Norman Pilon Men make their own history, but they do not make it as they please; they do not make it under self-selected circumstances, but under circumstances existing already, given and transmitted from the past. The tradition of all dead generations weighs like a nightmare on the brains of the living. Karl Marx, 1852 The concrete totality as a totality of thought, as a thought concretum, is in fact a product of thought and conception; but in no sense a product of the concept thinking and engendering itself outside or over intuitions or conceptions, but on the contrary, a product of the elaboration of intuitions and conceptions into concepts.’ Karl Marx, 1859 What is the problem of History? It is, as Marx puts it, that we do not make our history, be it personal or collective, under circumstances of our choosing. What are these circumstances? To describe them and the manner in which they seize hold of us, never again quite to release their grip, consider what happens to a child born into a …

The cognitive dissonance of western “progressive liberals”

by Andre Vltchek Most likely you have already heard that tune, ten times, or maybe one hundred, depending where you live and the circle of friends you have. But let me remind you how it goes: “I’ll never set foot in Singapore, because it is all business there.” Or: “Let others go to Gulf countries, I’d never do something like that. They have no culture and it is all showing off and glitz there, purchased with oil money… not to mention all those terrible conflicts they are fueling in the region.” Then, there is that big ugly “I” name: “Me going there? Over my dead body! It is illegitimate; it is sitting on other peoples’ land.” So it goes… While genuine criticism is always healthy, it is important to realize that many of those who get ignited by even hearing the names of places like Dubai or Singapore are actually living in the cities like New York, Paris or London. Some are even practicing law, or other mainstream professions that have to be defined as …

The dark spectre of political correctness

by Vladimir Golstein at the Duran A spectre is haunting Europe—and it is not the spectre of communism. Marx’s dream had been replaced by a much more primitive, pernicious, and grotesque spectre, that of Political Correctness and by its twin brother: equally primitive, grotesque and virulent xenophobia and racism. This spectre replacement is hardly coincidental. Like a good cop, bad cop routine, these twin brothers seem to succeed in their insidious attempt to suppress any serious discourse of domestic or foreign policies, any attempt to go beyond the previously approved and predetermined lines of reasoning so that the ruling order remains protected from Marx’s or any other truly dangerous spectres. Besides its philosophical poverty, PC had recently demonstrated its utter bankruptcy in the face of wars, invasions, population displacement, and cheap labor policies. It failed to formulate and carry out a proper response to the so-called refugee crisis that overwhelmed Europe first by the sheer amount of people indiscriminately admitted into Europe, and then by the amount and intensity of violent crimes that some of …

What is the European Union For?

by Frank After all the initial eu(ro)phoria and hopes placed upon the original concept of a non-aligned, social-democratic Euro-bloc, the reality has turned out somewhat differently. In a pamphlet written in 2011 – Europe: The Unfinished Project – I wrote: At the present time the EU project seems to be stuck in no-man’s land, unable to press ahead with full political integration, or retreat back into a northern European protectionist Deutschmark zone, and leaving the peripheral member states to the tender mercies of unfettered, globalized capitalism. However there seems to be a sufficient residue of the original EU idealism in the present stage of development to persevere further with the political struggle taking place.” Ibid, page 19 I believe that this view, which seemed justifiable and plausible enough at the time of writing, has now become difficult to sustain. And the reason for this came in the next sentence, viz. One only has to consider the Anglo-American alternatives (to the Euro model) and globalization more generally to make this choice.” This statement was, however, based …

How Come Washington’s Humanitarian Concerns Always Result in Population Control

by Jean Perier, via New Eastern Outlook Alleged humanitarian efforts have always been a rather important aspect of the state propaganda campaign carried out by the White House and its media. We’ve seen Washington using its proxy NGOs to fight against the alleged “humanitarian crimes” of the Syrian government, Russia, Iran, North Korea, Venezuela, Cuba and other states that Washington has declared its enemies. This large-scale campaign that is said to be driven by “common human values” has been supported by a number of modern American oligarchs. Among those “humanitarian champions” one may find the founder of Microsoft and one of the richest businessmen in the world, Bill Gates. He is a figure who likes to be presented as a benevolent philanthropist of sorts. By using the so-called “Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation,” this American oligarch attempts to put on the mask of the official representative of the US political elite, carrying on the fight against poverty, food shortages and diseases in Africa and other poor regions of the world. However, in reality these “activities” …

Obama’s Nonexistent Legacy

by Eric Zuesse, originally posted at strategic-culture.org Trump did more than any democrat to deflate the neocon/neoliberal agenda that liberals themselves screamed was fascist when Bush was president.” That was a brilliant and profoundly true reader-comment posted November 14th about Hillary Clinton supporters who were demonstrating against Trump’s winning the Presidency. Hillary was even more of a war-hawk than Bush was, or than Obama was: she supported not just Bush’s invasion of Iraq, but Obama’s invasions of Libya and Syria, a coup in Honduras, and helped plan Obama’s coup in Ukraine, which led to Ukraine’s breaking apart into civil war. Plus she was even more of a champion of Wall Street than Obama was, and maybe even more so than Bush was. Yet many Democrats think that the anti-Establishment Donald Trump is, somehow, even worse. They claim that Trump is a “racist” — as though either Barack Obama or Hillary Clinton hadn’t been leading a country where the top 0.1% got the vast majority of the economic benefits and the bottom 90% — including especially …

A collection of thoughts about American foreign policy

by William Blum, November 6, 2016, Anti-Empire Reports Louis XVI needed a revolution, Napoleon needed two historic military defeats, the Spanish Empire in the New World needed multiple revolutions, the Russian Czar needed a communist revolution, the Austro-Hungarian and Ottoman Empires needed World War I, Nazi Germany needed World War II, Imperial Japan needed two atomic bombs, the Portuguese Empire in Africa needed a military coup at home, the Soviet Empire needed Mikhail Gorbachev … What will the American Empire need? I don’t believe anyone will consciously launch World War III. The situation now is more like the eve of World War I, when great powers were armed and ready to go when an incident set things off. Ever since Gorbachev naively ended the Cold War, the hugely over-armed United States has been actively surrounding Russia with weapons systems, aggressive military exercises, NATO expansion. At the same time, in recent years the demonization of Vladimir Putin has reached war propaganda levels. Russians have every reason to believe that the United States is preparing for war …

34 Reasons This Bernie Voter Will Vote Trump

by Eric Zuesse Here are the 34: “Hillary Clinton’s Six Foreign-Policy Catastrophes” “Hillary Clinton the hawk, and the Honduran coup” “I’m a Bernie Sanders Voter: Here’s Why I’ll Vote Trump” “Hillary Clinton: A Threat to All Humanity.” “Red-Light Warning On Now About Hillary Clinton” “Here’s Why Hillary Won’t Allow Her Corporate Speeches to Be Published” “Hillary Clinton’s Global-Burning Record” “We’re out of time on climate change. And Hillary Clinton helped get us here” “Hillary Clinton Is Backed by Major Republican Donors” “Wall Street gives Hillary Clinton $27M” “Tim Kaine Calls To Deregulate Banks As He Campaigns To Be Clinton’s VP” “Hillary Clinton Exposed Part 1 – How She Aggressively Lobbied for Mega Corporations” “Hillary v. Bernie: Their Two Opposite Views of the Presidency” “Hillary Clinton Backs Fast-Track on Obama’s Trade Deals” “Hillary’s Record: Pretending to Oppose Trade Agreements” “Hillary Clinton Oversaw US Arms Deals to Clinton Foundation Donors” “Neocon Kagan Endorses Hillary Clinton” “Neoconservatives Declare War on Trump” “U.S. Foreign Policy ‘Elites’ Eagerly Await Expansion Of Overseas Wars Under Hillary Clinton” “Hillary the Hawk: A History” …

Nobel Economics Versus Social Democracy

by Avner Offer, October 10, 2016, via Project Syndicate Of the elites who manage modern society, only economists have a Nobel Prize, whose latest recipients, Oliver Hart and Bengt Holmström, have just been announced. Whatever the reason for economists’ unique status, the halo conferred by the prize can – and often has – lend credibility to policies that harm the public interest, for example by driving inequality and making financial crises more likely. But economics does not have the field entirely to itself. A different view of the world guides the allocation of about 30% of GDP – for employment, health care, education, and pensions – in most developed countries. This view about how society should be managed – social democracy – is not only a political orientation; it is also a method of government. Standard economics assumes that society is driven by self-seeking individuals trading in markets, whose choices scale up to an efficient state via the “invisible hand.” But this doctrine is not well founded in either theory or practice: its premises are …

The BLACKGUARDING of JACQUELINE WALKER

by W Stephen Gilbert It’s crucial to remember that anti-Semitism is the McGuffin, a plot device that fifth columnists in the Labour Party deploy to further their aim of undermining Jeremy Corbyn. The Jewish community has for centuries been one of the most progressive, radical and creative contributors to Britain’s politics and culture, and there has been a natural and easy affinity between Socialism and Judaism. What Marx called “the Jewish question” has always attracted lively interest and sympathy on the left. This has not changed since Corbyn became Labour leader; not one iota. Though anti-Semitism has frequently been expressed on the right of British politics, racial and/or tribal and/or cultural distinction has rarely before caused dissension on the left. It’s true that male chauvinism and homophobia have been more difficult for the left to grasp, but not for all on the left; James Connolly, the Irish patriot and Socialist thinker who was executed a century ago this year, wrote wisely and well about feminism though he, like all thoughtful men, would not claim to …

Why Both Clinton & Trump Are Corrupt

by Eric Zuesse, originally posted at strategic-culture.org In order to overcome the partisanship on both sides of this U.S. Presidential contest, the corruption of both of the candidates needs to be acknowledged, and a quick way to do that is to consider the cases of their respective charities (we’ll go beyond that to a broader view afterward): On September 10th, David A. Farenthold headlined in the Washington Post, “How Donald Trump retooled his charity to spend other people’s money”, and he documented that Trump has lied in his many statements asserting that he donates lots to charities, and that he has even used his (actually meager) Foundation as a device to collect donations from others and then simply donate that money from others, to other charities as being “charitable donations by the Trump Foundation”; he even has sometimes used donations others had made to his ‘Charity’ in order to purchase things for some of his own businesses. So: not only is his ‘charity’ meager, but it consists largely of the charity of others — and …