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[Entertainment] Best of TV this weekend: ‘Disney’s Fairy Tale Weddings: Holiday Magic’ Saturday, Dec. 8 and Sunday, Dec. 9, 2018 | “Casey Anthony: Her Friends Speak.” Published:12/9/2018 3:29:43 AM
[a865f1b1-953c-5c50-ba67-badfe86d8a08] Casey Anthony’s former roommate speaks out in doc: ‘She’s lying about everything’ Clint House said he’s still stunned that his former friend, Casey Anthony, was reportedly in good spirits while her daughter was missing. Published:12/8/2018 4:23:50 AM
[0b39526b-5218-5271-8c71-e9b41efd5d14] No evidence of crime in Casey Kasem's death, police say Police found no evidence of wrongdoing after investigating allegations that relatives of radio personality Casey Kasem were responsible for his 2014 death but will now turn the matter over to prosecutors, officials in Washington state said Friday. Published:11/30/2018 6:05:11 PM
[Markets] Doug Casey On Why Gold Is Money

Via CaseyResearch.com,

It’s an unfortunate historical anomaly that people think about the paper in their wallets as money. The dollar is, technically, a currency. A currency is a government substitute for money. But gold is money.

Now, why do I say that?

Historically, many things have been used as money. Cattle have been used as money in many societies, including Roman society. That’s where we get the word “pecuniary” from: the Latin word for a single head of cattle is pecus. Salt has been used as money, also in ancient Rome, and that’s where the word “salary” comes from; the Latin for salt is sal (or salis). The North American Indians used seashells. Cigarettes were used during WWII. So, money is simply a medium of exchange and a store of value.

By that definition, almost anything could be used as money, but obviously, some things work better than others; it’s hard to exchange things people don’t want, and some things don’t store value well. Over thousands of years, the precious metals have emerged as the best form of money. Gold and silver both, though primarily gold.

There’s nothing magical about gold. It’s just uniquely well-suited among the 98 naturally occurring elements for use as money… in the same way aluminum is good for airplanes or uranium is good for nuclear power.

There are very good reasons for this, and they are not new reasons. Aristotle defined five reasons why gold is money in the 4th century BCE (which may only have been the first time it was put down on paper). Those five reasons are as valid today as they were then.

When I give a speech, I often offer a prize to the audience member who can tell me the five classical reasons gold is the best money. Quickly now – what are they? Can’t recall them? Read on, and this time, burn them into your memory.

Money

If you can’t define a word precisely, clearly and quickly, that’s proof you don’t understand what you’re talking about as well as you might. The proper definition of money is as something that functions as a store of value and a medium of exchange.

Government fiat currencies can, and currently do, function as money. But they are far from ideal. What, then, are the characteristics of a good money? Aristotle listed them in the 4th century BCE. A good money must be all of the following:

  • Durable: A good money shouldn’t fall apart in your pocket nor evaporate when you aren’t looking. It should be indestructible. This is why we don’t use fruit for money. It can rot, be eaten by insects, and so on. It doesn’t last.

  • Divisible: A good money needs to be convertible into larger and smaller pieces without losing its value, to fit a transaction of any size. This is why we don’t use things like porcelain for money – half a Ming vase isn’t worth much.

  • Consistent: A good money is something that always looks the same, so that it’s easy to recognize, each piece identical to the next. This is why we don’t use things like oil paintings for money; each painting, even by the same artist, of the same size and composed of the same materials is unique. It’s also why we don’t use real estate as money. One piece is always different from another piece.

  • Convenient: A good money packs a lot of value into a small package and is highly portable. This is why we don’t use water for money, as essential as it is – just imagine how much you’d have to deliver to pay for a new house, not to mention all the problems you’d have with the escrow. It’s also why we don’t use other metals like lead, or even copper. The coins would have to be too huge to handle easily to be of sufficient value.

  • Intrinsically valuable: A good money is something many people want or can use. This is critical to money functioning as a means of exchange; even if I’m not a jeweler, I know that someone, somewhere wants gold and will take it in exchange for something else of value to me. This is why we don’t – or shouldn’t – use things like scraps of paper for money, no matter how impressive the inscriptions upon them might be.

Actually, there’s a sixth reason Aristotle should have mentioned, but it wasn’t relevant in his age, because nobody would have thought of it... It can’t be created out of thin air.

Not even the kings and emperors who clipped and diluted coins would have dared imagine that they could get away with trying to use something essentially worthless as money.

These are the reasons why gold is the best money. It’s not a gold bug religion, nor a barbaric superstition. It’s simply common sense. Gold is particularly good for use as money, just as aluminum is particularly good for making aircraft, steel is good for the structures of buildings, uranium is good for fueling nuclear power plants, and paper is good for making books. Not money. If you try to make airplanes out of lead, or money out of paper, you’re in for a crash.

That gold is money is simply the result of the market process, seeking optimum means of storing value and making exchanges.

Published:11/24/2018 2:00:35 PM
[Markets] "The Whole Thing Is Crazy" - Doug Casey On The Migrant Caravan

Via CaseyResearch.com,

Hundreds of migrants have showed up at the U.S.-Mexico border.

They’re part of a “caravan” that includes about 5,000 people from Central America. The rest of the caravan, as far as we know, is still in central Mexico. But make no mistake. They’ll show up at the border any day now.

And no one can agree on what to do with these people. Some say we should just let them into America. Other people, including President Trump, think we should keep the migrants out. In fact, Trump recently called the caravan an “invasion.” Not only that, he deployed thousands of U.S. troops to the border to keep these people from entering.

In short, it’s very controversial. So I called Doug Casey earlier this week to see what he thinks about this...

Justin: Doug, the migrant caravan has captured the attention of the mainstream media as well as Donald Trump. Why’s this such a big deal?

Doug: There are several things going on here. One is that the leftists believe that nation states shouldn’t exist. Now, I’m not a believer in the nation state either. It’s only been around since the 17th century; it’s not inscribed in the cosmic firmament. There are better ways to organize a society.

The United States, for one, is way too big to be a single country at this point. I’m pretty confident that over the next couple generations, the U.S. is going to break up into several different countries. But that’s a different question. The last thing it needs is another alien group trying to forcibly insert itself into the mix.

The Democrats and the leftists don’t really believe in freedom of movement and travel. That’s no more than a talking point, to make them seem righteous. They believe in State control of almost every area of life. Since when has the freedom to travel and cross borders been important to them?

Personally, I believe in freedom of movement and freedom of travel – but that doesn’t mean you can violate others’ property rights. If you have one person requesting legal entry, that’s one question. But if a group of 1,000 or 10,000 is looking to illegally and forcibly cross into a different political area, it’s a different question entirely.

The people abetting this migration are purposefully trying to force a confrontation.

Justin: Why make such a long trek?

Doug: Apparently, they presume that the U.S. government will roll over, and put the migrants up when they arrive. That’s not an unreasonable presumption. It’s well-known the U.S. government has no guiding principles.

The groups financing them are, I would say, trying to make a moral point with the gullible U.S. public. “These are poor helpless immigrants, like your own ancestors. So you have to do the right thing, and take care of them.” Of course that’s a lie from start to finish – except for the poor part. But it’s effective psychological warfare in today’s world.

They’re also trying to demoralize the Trump administration, showing they have no real power or support.

The migrants themselves are acting stupidly. I don’t mean they necessarily have low IQs – although the caravan certainly isn’t full of rocket scientists and brain surgeons. Nor am I using the word “stupid” in a necessarily pejorative way. A definition of the word that applies here is “an inability to predict, not just the immediate and direct consequences of an action, but its indirect and delayed consequences.”

What do they really think is going to happen after they leave Mexico, and try to enter the U.S.? They’ll be arrested, fingerprinted, and charged with a crime. Which means they’re not likely to ever get legal entrance to the U.S. in the future. The poor fools are just tools being used by the people organizing and financing the migration, to prove some points.

It’s very bold for thousands of migrants to show up and ask to be fed, sheltered, and clothed. But also occupied, employed, given medical treatment, and have their children cared for. They’ve done zero to deserve any favors. But it’s not only an economic problem. It’s a moral problem.

These people – or those who are encouraging them – think they have a right to impose themselves. And the U.S. government, and the U.S. public, never even question the ethics of all this – so they’re foredoomed to failure. The Americans, idiotically, just say it’s against the law. But laws are arbitrary, and can change. It’s really a question of what’s right and wrong. The leftists, however, cleverly say that they have morality on their side.  

It’s said that these people are from Honduras and El Salvador. But who knows? The quality of reporting in the media is so poor, that you can’t really know where they’re coming from or who they are. It’s said that they’re “families fleeing from violence.” That’s irrelevant. But from looking at video feed, they seem to be mostly young males, with a few women and children for cosmetic purposes. One report I’ve heard, from a man that was actually there, is that over 90% are young men.

The whole sideshow is full of unanswered questions. How is it that these people from Central American countries were able to cross the southern Mexican border? Did the Mexicans try to keep them out? How do poor people expect to march all the way up Mexico? We’re talking well over 1,000 miles. Who’s paying for their food? Are they just sleeping in the bushes on the roadsides every night? What happens when one of them gets sick? These are questions that need to be answered. The whole thing is crazy.

Justin: Do you think the migrants might be receiving outside help or funding? It wouldn’t be the first time that something like that’s happened. Non-governmental organizations [NGO] have transported migrants by the boatload from Africa to Europe.

If so, who might be helping them? And why?

Doug: Well, if I was really that interested, I would get on a plane, fly to Mexico and start interviewing these people to find out what the facts are. But there are about a hundred other things that are more important to me. That’s the job of a reporter, or a news organization. Where are they? They should be all over this. But whether you could trust the reporting is another question.

But the big question is how did these thousands of people get the idea that they could leave their homes in Honduras and El Salvador, walk up through Mexico, and enter the U.S.? Did they expect to be received with open arms, and get free food, shelter, and clothing for however long? Where did this idea come from?

I hate to bring up George Soros, who’s justifiably the bête noire of the right wing. But he, along with Hillary Clinton, has been quoted as saying that it’s time for a “Purple Revolution” in the U.S. “Purple” comes from a merging of the red and the blue. A Purple Revolution in the U.S. might be similar to the Arab Spring revolution and the colored revolutions of Eastern Europe – very unpleasant, with unpredictable results. Perhaps it’s already underway; there’s plenty of antagonism, actual hatred, and irreconcilable views in evidence.

I believe the migrants are being led and financed; they have to be. It takes money to turn theory into practice. Whether it’s Soros and his NGOs or a bunch of other NGOs is irrelevant. Elements of the Democratic Party could be financing this stuff, helping the peasants organize, and just seeing how much it embarrasses Trump. It’s definitely not a spontaneous movement.

But suppose this is just a test run. If 5,000 – what’s guessed as the current number – people show up at the border, you could stop them. What if 100,000 well-financed and well-organized people show up at the border next time? How are you going to stop them? You couldn’t, unless you shoot them. They’ll just walk across as a human wave.

It’s the same problem that Europeans are going to face with the Africans in the years to come. Over the next generation or two, the population of Africa is set to double and triple. At the same time, Europe’s population is shrinking and getting very old. More important, Europeans no longer have any backbone, or belief in the value of their civilization. When the Africans – mostly Mohammedans – show up it won’t be just 100,000 or 200,000 as was the case a couple summers ago. We’re talking about a million… two million… or tens of millions. It’s going to change the whole character of the continent.

Justin: So what do you make of Trump’s handling of this situation? He’s reportedly sent more than 5,000 troops to the U.S.-Mexico border to defend what he’s calling an “invasion.”

Doug: As I mentioned a moment ago, embarrassing Trump is undoubtedly one reason why this march was organized and financed. They realize that it presents Trump with a real conundrum. What are the troops going to do? Are they going to be issued live ammunition? And at what point will they be given the orders to fire? Rifles don’t even have bayonet attachments anymore. Will it just turn into a pushing and shoving contest?

What the caravan may do is put their token women and children up front because it’s very bad PR to shoot or club women and kids. Perhaps they’ll try to push the fence down and then walk across the border. More likely they’ll try to walk through the border station, where hundreds of cars are lined up.

How are you going stop them? Well, if there are only a few thousand, you can arrest them. But then they’re in the U.S. And you don’t want them in the U.S. Now, you have another problem. How are you going to get rid of them? In any event, soldiers are completely ineffectual and unsuited for the job.

How can you get them back into Mexico, once they’ve crossed the border? At most of the California official crossings, there’s a “no man’s land,” a neutral zone. You’re out of Mexico, but not really in the U.S. The Mexicans don’t want them back. So, either the U.S. will have 5,000 people milling around, or it’s going to have to incarcerate them. Then they’re definitely in the U.S.

Justin: What would you do if putting troops on the border isn’t the answer?

Doug: I’ve said before that two things could solve this problem.

Number one, there should be absolutely zero welfare benefits to anyone. Ideally that includes U.S. citizens – however that’s totally impossible at this point. But certainly for non-U.S. citizens, so there’s nothing to draw these people in. Benefits draw in the wrong kind of person. That’s the most important difference between today’s migrants, and the legitimate immigrants of the past. Before the 1960s, they had to pay their own way to get here, and support themselves once they arrived.

Number two, all property in the U.S. should be privately owned, so there aren’t any bridges for them to sleep under, or unowned sidewalks where they can panhandle. No government-owned parks where they can camp out. If you can’t pay the rent for wherever you are, or if the owner of the sidewalk or road doesn’t want you on it, you’ve got to go elsewhere. That would solve the problem. But neither is feasible in today’s America.

It should be up to individual property owners to defend their property. In other words, they should be the ones making the decisions. And if they need to use force to defend their property, that should be perfectly acceptable and within the law. Of course, you want to minimize the use of force. But we simply cannot let people, in effect, confiscate your property.

What I’m saying is this shouldn’t even be a government problem. The government is no better at solving this problem than they are at solving any other problem. As a result, it’s just going to get worse.

I suspect this caravan is just a trial balloon. The next time they’ll make sure there are 50,000 or 100,000 people at the border. We’re not going to be able to keep them out. And once they’re in, unless you just let them go anywhere they want, they’ve got to be incarcerated. And once they’re incarcerated, what are you going to do with them? You can’t send them back across the Mexican border. The Mexicans aren’t going to want them. How are you going to sort them out and fly them back to whatever country they came from? I doubt any of them have passports.

The present system is totally incapable of coping with the problem of mass migration, and the problem will get bigger. Once Trump is out of office in 2020, some hardcore leftist will be elected. Presumably they’ll welcome these people. Or maybe not. They’ll see them as a real welfare burden – penniless, devoid of skills, and unable to even speak English. On the other hand, they’ll be a boon to MS-13 and other gangs.

At that point, we’re going to witness a major change in the demography of the U.S. We’re already in the middle stages of the transformation. As late as the ’60s, the U.S. was about 85% people of European extraction, and 15% “other.” Now it’s 60-40. Soon the U.S. will be truly multi-ethnic and multi-cultural. They’ll all be voting, to garner bennies for their own groups, at the expense of others. It will make for a highly unstable situation, with lots of resentment. Explosive, actually.

Justin: Doug, I read that the bulk of the caravan is in Mexico City now and headed for Tijuana next before crossing into San Diego.

Do you find it interesting that the caravan would head for California rather than taking a more direct route into Texas? Supposedly, this is the safest route available.

But I can’t help but wonder if California was chosen because it might be a more welcoming environment. What are your thoughts?

Doug: That’s an interesting point. I suppose it ties into Trump’s idea of building a wall, because there is actually a serviceable fence at Tijuana. My guess is that they’ll attempt to get arrested at the Customs and Immigration booths and get into the U.S. that way. California won’t use the state troopers to arrest them, nor will the local municipality use their police. It will be up to Washington.

It would be too hard to have this motley crew of migrants try to walk through the Mexican desert to swim across the Rio Grande. Which is why they aren’t choosing Texas, New Mexico, or Arizona.

Maybe their intention is just to go through the actual border crossing, and just push their way through there. I can’t wait to see what their strategy is. Again, it’s a sign of how bad the reporting is that no news man, no journalist has gone down there to ask these questions and get the answers from the horse’s mouth. All we can do is speculate.

But look at the bright side. This is free entertainment.

Justin: Thanks for your time, Doug.

Doug: You’re welcome.

Published:11/20/2018 8:31:04 PM
[2d96894e-4b62-53c8-84c2-a8d6b069d915] Casey Kasem’s family claims he was murdered in ‘48 Hours’ shocker Legendary DJ Casey Kasem’s vicious family feud now includes allegations of murder and elder abuse — and is the focus of Saturday’s “48 Hours.” Published:11/19/2018 11:00:27 PM
[Markets] Doug Casey: How To Survive The Deep State

Authored by Doug Casey via InternationalMan.com,

Almost everyone looks for a political solution to problems. However, once a Deep State situation has taken over, only a revolution or a dictatorship can turn it around, and probably only in a small country.

Maybe you’re thinking you should get behind somebody like Ron Paul (I didn’t say Rand Paul), should such a person materialize. That would be futile.

Here’s what would happen in the totally impossible scenario that this person was elected and tried to act like a Lee Kuan Yew or an Augusto Pinochet against the Deep State:

  • First, there would be a “sit-down” with the top dogs of the Praetorian agencies and a bunch of Pentagon officers to explain the way things work.

  • Then, should he survive, he would be impeached by the running dogs of Congress.

  • Then, should he survive, whipped dog Americans would revolt at the prospect of having their doggy dishes broken.

Remember, your fellow Americans not only elected Obama, but re-elected him. Do you expect they’ll be more rational as the Greater Depression deepens? Maybe you think the police and the military will somehow help. Forget it…they’re part of the problem. They’re here to protect and serve their colleagues first, then their employer (the State), and only then the public. But the whipped dog likes to parrot: “Thank you for your service.” Which is further proof that there’s no hope.

So what should you do, based on all this? For one thing, don’t waste your time and money trying to change the course of history. Trying to stop the little snowball rolling down the mountainside might have worked many decades ago, but now it’s turned into a gigantic avalanche that’s going to smash the village at the bottom of the valley. I suggest you get out of the way.

What, you may ask, would I do if I were dictator of the U.S. and had absolutely no regard for my personal safety? Here’s a seven-part program, for entertainment purposes only:

  1. Allow the collapse of all zombie corporations – banks, brokers, insurers, and government contractors. The real wealth they supposedly own will still exist.

  2. Abolish all regulatory agencies. Although Boobus americanus believes they exist to protect him, and that may have been an intention when they were created, they, at best, serve the industries they regulate. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration, for instance, kills more Americans every year than does the Department of Defense in a typical decade. The SEC, the Swindlers Encouragement Consortium, lulls the average investor into thinking he’s protected. They, and other agencies, extract scores of billions out of the economy to feed useless mouths in return for throwing sand in the gears of the economy.

  3. Abolish the Fed…you need a strong currency to encourage saving. Actually, you don’t need a currency at all. Gold is vastly better as money.

  4. Cut the size of the military by 90% and abolish the Praetorian agencies. In addition to bankrupting the U.S., the military is now a huge domestic danger, even while it’s mainly an instrument for creating enemies abroad.

  5. Sell essentially all U.S. government assets. Although some actually have value, they are all a drain on the economy. For instance, the U.S. Postal Service loses $5 billion a year; Amtrak loses another billion or so per year. The Interstate Highway System, airports and the air-traffic-control system, the 650 million acres of U.S. government land, and many thousands of other assets should all be distributed in shares or sold. This would liberate an immense amount of dead capital. The proceeds could be used to partially satisfy some government obligations.

  6. Eliminate the income tax, as a start, which will be possible if the other six things are done. The economy would boom.

  7. Default on the national debt and contingent liabilities. That’s somewhere between $21 trillion and $200 trillion. There are at least three reasons for that. First is to avoid turning future generations into serfs. Second is to punish those who have enabled the State by lending it money. Third is to make it impossible for the State to borrow in the future, at least for a while.

I like this program from a practical point of view, because when a structure is about to collapse, it’s much wiser to conduct a controlled demolition than to just let it fall when no one expects it.

But I also like it from a philosophical point of view because, as Nietzsche observed, that which is falling deserves to be pushed.

There are, however, two very important reasons for optimism: science and savings.

Science: Science and technology are the mainsprings of progress, and there are more scientists and engineers alive today than have lived in all previous history put together. Unfortunately for Western civilization however, most of them are Asians. Most American PhDs aren’t in Rocket Science but Political Science, or maybe Gender Studies. Nonetheless, the advancement of science offers some reason to believe that not only is all this gloom and doom poppycock, but that the future will not only be better than you imagine, but, hopefully, better than you canimagine.

Savings: Things can recover quickly because technology and skills don’t vanish overnight. Everybody but university economists knows that if you want to avoid starving to death, you have to produce more than you consume and save the difference. The problem is twofold, however. Most Americans have no savings. To the contrary, they have lots of debt. And debt means you’re either consuming someone else’s savings or mortgaging your own future.

Worse, science today is capital intensive. With no capital, you’ve got no science. Worse yet, if the U.S. actually destroys the dollar, it will wipe out the capital of prudent savers and reward society’s grasshoppers. Until they starve.

Of course, as Adam Smith said, there’s a lot of ruin in a nation. It took Rome several centuries to collapse. And look at how quickly China recovered from decades of truly criminal mismanagement.

On the other hand, Americans love their military, and this heavily armed version of the post office seems like the only part of the government that works, kind of. So maybe the U.S. will start something like World War III. Then, the whole world can see a real-life zombie apocalypse. Talk about free entertainment…

Action

But let’s return to the real world. What should you do? And how will this all end?

From a personal standpoint, you should preserve capital by owning significant assets outside your native country, because as severe as market risks are, your political risks are much greater.

  1. I suggest foreign real estate in a country where you’re viewed as an investor to be courted, rather than a milk cow. Or maybe a beef cow.

  2. Gold. It’s no longer at giveaway prices, but remains the only financial asset that’s not someone else’s liability.

  3. Look for depressed speculations. At the moment, my favorites are resource companies, which are down more than 90% as a group. And look to go long on commodities in general. Soybeans, wheat, corn, sugar, coffee, copper, and silver are historically undervalued.

  4. Short bubbles that are about to burst, like bonds in general, and Japanese bonds denominated in yen, in particular. If you have a collectible car from the ‘60s that you hold as a financial asset, hit the bid tomorrow morning. Same if you have expensive property in London, New York, Sydney, Auckland, Hong Kong, or Shanghai, among other places.

The Second Law to the Rescue

From a macro standpoint, don’t worry too much. The planet has been here for 4.5 billion years and it has a life of its own. You don’t have to do anything to save the world. Instead, rely on the Second Law of Thermodynamics.

There are very few laws I believe in, but this is one of them. There are many ways of stating the law, and its corollaries, but this isn’t an essay on physics. In essence, it states that all systems wind down over time. Entropy conquers all. That all systems collapse without constant new inputs of energy. And that the larger and more complex a system becomes, the more energy it requires. The Second Law is why nothing lasts forever.

In human affairs, you can say stupidity is a corollary to the Second Law, in that it throws sand in the gears of society and accelerates the tendency of things to collapse. But stupidity doesn’t always mean low intelligence…most of the destructive sociopaths acting as top dogs have very high IQs. I want to draw your attention to more useful definitions of stupidity.

One definition of stupidity is an inability to predict not just the immediate and direct consequences of an action (which a typical six-year-old can do) but also to fail to predict the indirect and delayed consequences.

An even more helpful definition is: Stupidity is an unwitting tendency towards self-destruction. It’s why operations run by bad people always go bad. And why, since the Deep State is run by bad people – the sociopaths who are actively drawn to it – it will necessarily collapse.

The Second Law not only assures that the Deep State will collapse but, given enough time, that all “End of the World” predictions will eventually be right, up to the heat death of the universe itself. It applies to all things at all levels…including, unfortunately, Western civilization and the idea of America. As for Western civilization, it’s had a fantastic run. Claims of the politically correct and multiculturalists aside, it’s really the only civilization that amounts to a hill of beans.

Now, it’s even riskier calling a top in a civilization than the top of a stock or bond market. But I’d say Western civilization peaked just before World War I. In the future, it will be a prestige item for Chinese families to have European maids and houseboys.

As for America, it was an idea – and a very good one – but it’s already vanished, replaced by the United States, which is just one of 200 other nation-states covering the face of the Earth like a skin disease. That said, the U.S. peaked in the mid ’50s and has gone down decisively since 1971. It’s living on stored momentum, memories, and borrowed Chinese money.

Let me bring this gloomy Spenglerian view of the world to a close with some happy thoughts. You want to leave them laughing. Not everybody went down with the Titanic.

Looking further at the bright side: Just being born in America in the 20th century amounted to winning the cosmic lottery…an accident of birth could have placed us in Guinea or Zimbabwe. On the other hand, if I wanted to make a fortune in today’s world, I’d definitely head to Africa.

But just as the Second Law dictates that all good things, like America, must come to an end, so must all bad things, like the Deep State in particular. That’s a cosmic certainty. We all love the idea of justice, even if most people neither understand what it is, nor like its reality.

Finally, it occurs to me that, while I hope I’ve explained why the Second Law will vanquish the Deep State, I’ve neglected to explain how whipped dogs can profit from the collapse of Western civilization.

The answer is that they can’t.

Fortunately, parasites can only exist as long as their host. Which is actually a final piece of good news I want to leave you with...

The socialists are rising in the US, and they are hungry to take the product of your labor and use it to augment their stupidity (the unwitting tendency to self-destruction). Now would be a great time to start looking for a bolt hole - a place that you own that is elsewhere. To learn more, read our free PDF on foreign real estate.

Published:11/10/2018 8:25:58 PM
[Markets] "Don't Ever Repeat This": Beto Aides Busted Funneling Caravan Funds In Undercover Sting

James O'Keefe's undercover operatives at Project Veritas have done it again; this time filming campaign staffers for Congressman and US Senate candidate Robert Francis "Beto" O'Rourke seemingly engaging in the illegal use of campaign resources to help transport Honduran nationals traveling in the Central American caravan. 

O'Rourke staffers Dominic Chacon and AnaPaula Themann admit to facilitating transportation to airports and bus stations.

Via Project Veritas

Chacon: “The Hondurans, yeah… I’m going to go get some food right now, like just some stuff to drop off…”

Themann: “How did they get through?”

Chacon: “Well I think they accepted them as like asylum-seekers… So, I’m going to get some groceries and some blankets…”

Themann: “Don’t ever repeat this and stuff but like if we just say that we’re buying food for a campaign event, like the Halloween events…

Chacon: “That’s not a horrible idea, but I didn’t hear anything. Umm, we can wait until tomorrow for that.

Themann: “Well that’s exactly the food we need. And I will just mark it as, I do have dozens of block walkers.”

“Don’t ever repeat this”

Featured in this report are campaign staffers who work on Congressman O’Rourke’s US Senate campaign discussing how they use campaign resources to help Honduran aliens and transport them to airports and bus stations. Said Dominic Chacon and AnaPaula Themann, who work on O’Rourke’s campaign:

Chacon: “The Hondurans, yeah… I’m going to go get some food right now, like just some stuff to drop off…”

Themann: “How did they get through?”

Chacon: “Well I think they accepted them as like asylum-seekers… So, I’m going to get some groceries and some blankets…”

Themann: “Don’t ever repeat this and stuff but like if we just say that we’re buying food for a campaign event, like the Halloween events…”

Chacon: “That’s not a horrible idea, but I didn’t hear anything. Umm, we can wait until tomorrow for that.”

Themann: “Well that’s exactly the food we need. And I will just mark it as, I do have dozens of block walkers.”

Using “pre-paid credit cards” … “some sort of violation”

A Project Veritas Action attorney reviewed the footage and assessed:

“The material Project Veritas Action Fund captured shows campaign workers covering up the true nature of spending of campaign funds and intentionally misreporting them. This violates the FEC’s rules against personal use and misreporting. It also violates Section 1001, making a false statement to the federal government. The FEC violations impose civil penalties, including fines of up to $10,000 or 200 percent of the funds involved. Violations of Section 1001 are criminal and include imprisonment of up to five years.”

Chacon and Themann also explain how they go about concealing their use of campaign funds for alien support purposes:

Themann: “There’s actually stores that just mark it as ‘food’ they don’t mark different types… at Albertsons, on the receipts, it marks it just based off of brand…”

Chacon: “I think we can use that with those [campaign pre-paid] cards to buy some food, all that s**t can be totally masked like, oh we just wanted a healthy breakfast!”

Themann says that she doesn’t “want to make it seem like all of us are from [the O’Rourke campaign]” when going to distribute supplies to the Honduran aliens. She adds, “I just hope nobody that’s the wrong person finds out about this.”

Chacon elaborates on the usage of pre-paid campaign cards, saying, “We’re going to use more of those cards to get them more supplies too. So it’s all going to work out. I’m done being nice. I’m done being professional. [Be]cause nothing is professional. None of this is like s**t there is a rule book for, you know?”

Later in the report, Chacon also reveals “there’s not really an approval process” regarding the usage of the pre-paid cards, and that “we can just go and get the food and we can come up with a BS excuse like as to why we needed to get this stuff.” He adds, “Under the table just sort of do it.”

“Nobody needs to know”

Chacon explains that Jody Casey, the campaign manager for the O’Rourke campaign, was happy to hear about their efforts supporting aliens with campaign funds:

Chacon: “She texted us afterward and was like, I’m so happy that we have a staff that gets it and was there, I was so happy to see y’all there, still working, still contributing, we have the best team ever… she was good about it.”

Journalist: “So, Jody knows?”

Chacon: “Well, she doesn’t know we used the pre-paid card, but she doesn’t need to know.”

Added Chacon, when discussing the possibility for using campaign vans to help the Honduran aliens, “we could probably get away with using the vans… Nobody needs to know.” Chacon also says, “For me, I can just ignore the rules and I’m like f**k it.”

When asked about using campaign resources to help the Honduran aliens, Casey said “don’t worry”:

Journalist: “It just made me really concerned, like, you know, because I know that we’re using some of the campaign resources to help with the migrants and like, I just didn’t want anybody to get in trouble with that…”

Journalist: “Like I didn’t want them to ask me any questions about people using resources…”

Jody Casey: “Don’t worry.”

Andrea Reyes, who also works on the O’Rourke campaign, revealed that she has text messages showing she received approval for using the pre-paid cards:

Reyes: “The thing is yeah, as long as we’re not advertising it. I mean yeah, I don’t really know. They said it was fine sooo *throws hands up* I mean I don’t know, okay. I told you about it! I have the text messages to prove it, sooo…”

Journalist: “So you told Jody?”

Reyes: “Yeah. I told Jody and I told my director.”

When asked about using campaign vans to assist the Honduran aliens, Chacon reveals that they are going to transport the aliens to airports and bus stations:

Chacon: “… we’re going to give rides to some of the immigrants too. Like to the airport, to the bus station, like why not, you know?”

Published:11/1/2018 9:27:51 PM
[Entertainment] Casey Anthony 10 Years After Her Daughter's Death: Inside Her Quest for a Normal Life Amid So Many Questions Still Unanswered Casey Anthony, Court, 2013Ten years ago, the remains of 2-year-old Caylee Anthony were found in the woods less than a mile from her grandparents' Orlando, Fla., home, where she had lived with her mom, Casey...
Published:10/27/2018 5:24:53 AM
[Entertainment] Casey Anthony Somehow Found a New Boyfriend Casey Anthony, Most Followed Crime StoriesBelieve it or not, Casey Anthony appears to have a new man in her life. The Florida woman known to some as "Tot Mom" is seeing a guy in his early 30s who works a professional job,...
Published:10/26/2018 12:17:12 PM
[Markets] Britain's Grooming Gangs: Part 3

Authored by Denis MacEoin via The Gatestone Institute,

Read Part 1 here...

Read Part 2 here...

Not all Muslims remained silent about the grooming gang problem. We have already seen how the new Home Secretary, Sajid Javid, a Muslim of Pakistani origin, took rapid action to open an enquiry into the crimes. A number of Muslim organizations and individuals have spoken out against the gangs, and condemned them for bringing their faith into disrepute. The integrative Islamic Society of Britain (ISB), for one, has spoken out strongly about grooming culture.

In May 2013, Julie Siddiqi, chief executive of the ISB, coordinated a Muslim-led coalition to campaign against offenders, known as The Community Alliance Against Sexual Exploitation, which, in turn, was launched in Bradford with the backing of the Bradford Council of Mosques. The following month, a Muslim group called Together Against Grooming (TAG) declared that a Friday prayer sermon (khutba) would be read out in around 500 mosques across the country to draw attention to the grooming issue. The sermon was written by Alyas Karmani, an imam who has a background in psychology and serves at several mosques around Bradford. Karmani specializes in sexual counselling from a non-fundamentalist perspective and has worked on a PhD entitled, "The Crises of Masculinity and Urban Male Violence". His detailed understanding of the grooming gangs and their various motivations are perhaps the most sophisticated yet advanced by a Muslim expert and should be taken into account by any present or future investigation.

Some other Muslim organizations such as the progressive Islamic Society of Britain have sent out sermons on the same issue. There can be no question that there is an important and growing range of Muslim reaction to the shame brought on the communities by the grooming gangs and the reluctance in many places even to talk about sexual matters. This reformist activity in the migrant community needs to be encouraged and backed by government resources.

There are, however, other, sometimes deeper aspects to the problem that still remain to be explored. Not all mosques agreed to read Karmani's sermon, and some claimed -- quite incorrectly, as it happened -- that the grooming issue was a thing of the past. Many of those deeper aspects are directly related to the persistence of religious fundamentalism and a wide refusal among many to integrate within British society. Despite the efforts of moderate Muslims, mosques and institutions to stop young men and women travelling abroad to take part in jihad or bring back wives from abroad, many have done so. Sermonizing, even with good intentions, may not address the underlying reasons for seemingly anti-social behaviour.

Also in 2013, Taj Hargey, imam of the Oxford Islamic Congregation, and a controversial reformist, spoke out following the trial and conviction of six members of a child sex ring from Oxford. He contended that some imams were indirectly inspiring the grooming gangs through their contempt for non-Muslim women:

On one level, most imams in the UK are simply using their puritanical sermons to promote the wearing of the hijab and even the burka among their female adherents. But the dire result can be the brutish misogyny we see in the Oxford sex ring.

He wrote at length about the ways in which fundamentalist attitudes influenced some men:

True Islam preaches respect for women but in mosques across the country a different doctrine is preached - "one that denigrates all women, but treats whites with particular contempt"....

The men are taught that women are "second-class citizens, little more than chattels or possessions over whom they have absolute authority"...

The view of some Islamic preachers towards white women can be appalling. They encourage their followers to believe that these women are habitually promiscuous, decadent, and sleazy — sins which are made all the worse by the fact that they are kaffurs [sic for kuffar, pl. of kafir] or non-believers.

Their dress code, from miniskirts to sleeveless tops, is deemed to reflect their impure and immoral outlook. According to this mentality, these white women deserve to be punished for their behaviour by being exploited and degraded.

The largest and most influential of all UK mosques are those of the Deobandis, a highly conservative majority denomination in Pakistani Islam that also dominates the seminaries within the UK and in which future imams are trained.

According to the author and Investigations editor at BBCNewsnight, Innes Bowen:

What most Deobandi scholars have in common is a conservative interpretation of Islamic law: television and music for the purposes of entertainment, for example, are frowned upon if not banned; attitudes towards women are deeply conservative, with, for example, some scholars advising Muslim women that their religion does not permit them to travel any distance unless accompanied by a close male relative. That this description of such an austere brand of Islam sounds similar to that propagated by the Taliban in Afghanistan should not be surprising – the Taliban movement grew out of the Deobandi madrasas of Pakistan.

Many Deobandi and other fundamentalist preachers and online fatwa sitespromulgate the doctrine of al-Wala' wa'l-Bara', which may be roughly translated as "loyalty [to Islam] and avoidance [of unbelievers]". This belief reinforces the need to stay away from, and even to have enmity towards, the inferior non-Muslim world. It is not far-fetched to see how, through this doctrine, a sense of total difference from, and contempt for, non-Muslims in general -- and non-Muslim girls and women in particular -- may have given many of the grooming gangs a debased level of justification, even self-righteousness in the members of the grooming gangs.

Hargey's link between the grooming gangs and hard-line religious leaders is borne out by an article published in 2018 by the serious liberal newspaper, The Independent. The author is Ella Hill, one of the girls abused in Rotherham and now part of the largest child sexual abuse investigation. She begins:

As a teenager, I was taken to various houses and flats above takeaways in the north of England, to be beaten, tortured and raped over 100 times. I was called a "white slag" and "white c***" as they beat me.

They made it clear that because I was a non-Muslim, and not a virgin, and because I didn't dress "modestly", that they believed I deserved to be "punished". They said I had to "obey" or be beaten.

Later, she refers to a Swedish government meeting in 2017, when it was stated that:

Sexual and gender-based violence is used as a tactic of terrorism by a range of today's violent extremist groups. This makes it essential to address violence against women and girls as an integrated part in countering and preventing violent extremism.

She then argues that:

Religious indoctrination is a big part of the process of getting young men involved in grooming gang crime. Religious ideas about purity, virginity, modesty and obedience are taken to the extreme until horrific abuse becomes the norm. It was taught to me as a concept of "othering".

"Muslim girls are good and pure because they dress modestly, covering down to their ankles and wrists, and covering their crotch area. They stay virgins until marriage. They are our girls."

[Author's note: Italicized in the original, but should probably have been in quotation marks. The passage is evidently meant to be words spoken by gang members who used her.]

She also emphasizes this religious background to her treatment, stating that "My main perpetrator quoted scriptures from the Quran to me as he beat me." Nevertheless, she goes on to say that "Most grooming gang survivors I know absolutely condemn anti-Islamic hate, and we're uncomfortable with English Defence League protests. We certainly don't want random attacks on 'all Muslims'. You can't cure harm with more harm."

The connection between fundamentalist religiosity, terrorism and gender crime is not as fanciful as it might have seemed at first. There are decent Muslims everywhere who work hard to counter all the anti-social and criminal activities in which so many of their co-religionists engage and the theological positions through which they try to justify what they do. But terrorist attacks, anti-Semitic hate speech, and sexual harassment of young white women are real crimes committed by a different kind of Muslim and must be addressed as such.

In a report published on December 12, 2017, the important Muslim counter-extremism think tank, the Quilliam Foundation, addressed at length the problem of the grooming gangs. Written by Quilliam's CEO, Haras Rafiq with media strategist and researcher Muna Adil, the report, "Group Based Child Sexual Exploitation: Dissecting Grooming Gangs", consists of a comprehensive data analysis of grooming gang cases identified in the UK since 2005. Ten case studies from 2010-2017 are also analysed in depth to help determine any similarities and identify any patterns that exist across the cases.

At the root of the problem seems to lie the fact that many Muslim men have failed to integrate into British society. According to Muna Adil:

There are elements from within the British Pakistani community that still subscribe to outdated and sexist views of women embedded within their jaded interpretations of Islam. These backward views are passed down from generation to generation until the lines between faith and culture dissolve, making it increasingly difficult to criticise one without being seen as a critic of the other.

Quilliam's findings echo a number of earlier reviews and surveys of the British Muslim community as a whole. In her 2016 government-commissioned review into integration and opportunity in isolated and deprived communities, Dame Louise Casey found evidence that the hardest group to integrate was the Muslim community. In her Executive Summary, she notes (paragraph 30) that:

People of Pakistani and Bangladeshi ethnicity tend to live in more residentially segregated communities than other ethnic minority groups. South Asian communities (people of Pakistani, Indian and Bangladeshi ethnicity) live in higher concentrations at ward level than any other ethnic minority group. These concentrations at ward level are growing in many areas.

She adds that that, "Compared to other minority faith groups, Muslims tend to live in higher residential concentrations at ward level". She continues:

[Paragraph] 32. The school age population is even more segregated when compared to residential patterns of living. A Demos study found that, in 2013, more than 50% of ethnic minority students were in schools where ethnic minorities were the majority, and that school segregation was highest among students from Pakistani and Bangladeshi ethnic backgrounds relative to other ethnic groups.

Again:

[Paragraph] 44. Polling in 2015 also showed that more than 55% of the general public agreed that there was a fundamental clash between Islam and the values of British society, while 46% of British Muslims felt that being a Muslim in Britain was difficult due to prejudice against Islam. We found a growing sense of grievance among sections of the Muslim population, and a stronger sense of identification with the plight of the 'Ummah', or global Muslim community.

She also highlights problems with the national language:

[Paragraph] 52. English language is a common denominator and a strong enabler of integration. But Pakistani and Bangladeshi ethnic groups have the lowest levels of English language proficiency of any Black or Minority Ethnic group and women in those communities are twice as likely as men to have poor English.

Finally, we should note her statement on gender equality, which is clearly linked to the Muslim communities:

[Paragraph] 57. ... in many areas of Britain the drive towards equality and opportunity across gender might never have taken place. Women in some communities are facing a double onslaught of gender inequality, combined with religious, cultural and social barriers preventing them from accessing even their basic rights as British residents. And violence against women remains all too prevalent in domestic abuse but also in other criminal practices such as female genital mutilation, forced marriage and so-called "honour" based crime.

Casey was not the first to draw attention to most of these issues. In 2007, the British think tank Policy Exchange, published a detailed report titled "Living apart together: British Muslims and the paradox of multiculturalism", written by three young Asian researchers. Their most striking finding, drawn from a survey, was that the youngest generation (16-24 year olds) were more radical in their beliefs than their grandparents (55+ year olds). Thus, 37% of the youngest would prefer to live under shari'a law than British law, compared to only 17% of their elders; 36% of the youngest believe that if a Muslim converts to another religion they must be punished by death, compared to only 19% of the oldest; a high 74% of 16-24 year olds prefer Muslim women to wear the veil, compared to a mere 28% of 55+ year olds -- an astonishing reversal. Most immigrant communities -- notably Jews, Italians, Irish, Poles and others in the United States' "melting pot" -- come to identify with their host country within the second and third generation, and that has been largely true of the United Kingdom.

One particular feature that distinguishes Muslims from the rest of the increasingly secular UK population is the extent to which religion plays a major role in people's lives. Figure 2 of the report shows that 66% agree strongly and another 20% of Muslims tend to agree that "My religion is the most important thing in my life". In Figure 1, 49% say they pray the full 5 times a day, and 22% 1-3 times a day, with a tiny 5% replying "never". It is important to read the report in full. for it has many supportive things to say about British Muslims:

However, there is also considerable diversity amongst Muslims, with many adopting a more secular approach to their religion. The majority of Muslims feel they have as much, if not more, in common with non-Muslims in Britain as with Muslims abroad. There is clearly a conflict within British Islam between a moderate majority that accepts the norms of Western democracy and a growing minority that does not. For these reasons, we should be wary of treating the entire Muslim population as a monolith with special needs that are different to the rest of the population.

An extensive poll of Muslim opinion conducted in 2016 by ICM showed that things were much the same or worse than in 2007. It was reported on by Trevor Phillips, a son of Caribbean immigrants and former chairman of Britain's Equality and Human Rights Commission. In an article for the Sunday Times, he expressed his deep frustration with the Muslim failure to integrate:

...for a long time, I too thought that Europe's Muslims would become like previous waves of migrants, gradually abandoning their ancestral ways, wearing their religious and cultural baggage lightly, and gradually blending into Britain's diverse identity landscape. I should have known better.

Another 2016 survey, carried out by a Czech think tank, European Values, found that some 44% of Muslims held views corresponding to radical Islamic fundamentalism.

"The survey discovered 57 percent of Muslims reject homosexuals as friends, 45 percent said they don't trust the Jews and 54 percent think of the West as an enemy of Islam. Among fundamentalist Muslims, 72 percent of respondents said they would use violence to defend Islam. Among regular Muslims, that number amounted to 35 percent.

"An incredibly large number of Muslims want Islamic Sharia law to dominate over local laws. For instance, 72 percent of Muslims in France want to see Sharia as the main or only source of law in the country. That figure remains astonishingly high in the United Kingdom at 69 percent."

Published:10/26/2018 1:15:35 AM
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Published:10/25/2018 4:12:24 PM
[Markets] CJ Hopkins On The Assassination Of Donald Trump

Authored by 'Satirist' and playwright CJ Hopkins via The Unz Review,

OK... here’s a question for you.

Let’s assume, strictly for the purposes of argument, that Donald Trump is literally Hitler, or at least a proto-Hitlerian fascist, like the neoliberal ruling classes and the corporate media have been saying he is. And let’s go ahead and also assume that he’s a treasonous Russian intelligence asset working in league with Vladimir Putin to destroy the very fabric of Western democracy, and that he isn’t even legitimately President, because he stole the election from Hillary Clinton with all those Russian bots and Facebook posts, and all that other stuff they’ve been accusing him of, which would make him the most monstrously evil villain in the history of monstrously evil villains, not to mention an existential threat to the nation, and Americans, and ... well, the rest of humanity.

And so, basically, what I want to know is, why don’t they just kill this guy?

Seriously, if Trump is really Hitler, and a traitor, working for a foreign enemy, like The New York Times and more or less every other organ of the corporate media has been telling us he is for the last two years, well, how about getting SEAL Team 6 to storm the White House in the dead of night and shoot him in the face or something? That seems to go over pretty well with people. Or what about a simple heart attack? Don’t our spooks have some kind of heart attack juice that they could slip into his Diet Coke, or smear onto the doorknob of the Oval Office?

Not that there’s really any need for subtlety. After all, if he’s actually a Russian operative, and a proto-Hitlerian genocidal dictator, there’s no reason to run a covert op or attempt to cover anything up. On the contrary, you would want do it openly, proudly, where all Americans could see it. Which is why I’d go with the DEVGRU option. They could waste him live on CNN. The bloodier the better. Just imagine the ratings! They could march into the Oval Office in that cool-looking kill squad body armor and beat him to death with a gold-plated golf club. It’s not like he’d put up much of a fight. What is he, like seventy years old or something?

All right, I know you’re probably thinking that beating a sitting president to death with a gold-plated gap wedge is nothing to joke about, and that doing so (i.e., joking about it, not actually beating the President to death) is possibly a federal crime or whatever, but we’re talking Adolf Hitler here, folks. Do I have to link to every one of the literally thousands of impassioned editorials, articles, and TV and radio segments in which respected journalists at serious news outlets have warned us, over and over, and over, that Donald Trump is literally Hitler, or virtually Hitler, and probably also a Russian agent? I don’t think so. Do you think that respectable publications like The New York TimesThe Washington PostThe GuardianThe AtlanticTime, and so on, would print such inflammatory allegations if the fate of democracy were not at stake? That would be rather reckless, wouldn’t it? I mean, how many times can you call a guy Hitler before Americans demand that somebody kill him?

This is what we do, after all.

Killing Hitler is America’s thing. America has been killing Hitler since... well, since Hitler killed himself. Saddam was Hitler. We killed him, didn’t we? Or we got some guys to kill him for us. Same goes for Gaddafi. He was Hitler. We killed the hell out of him. That was fun. We got some guys to sodomize him with a bayonet, and shoot him in the head, and then we laughed about it on national television. Oh, and Osama bin Laden. He was definitely Hitler … OK, not while he was working with the CIA, but later, after he went native on us. We shot him in the face and dumped in the ocean. And Milosevic, he was also Hitler! OK, we didn’t kill him, but we killed his whole country, then we put him on trial in the Hague for war crimes. And what about Stalin, Ho Chi Minh, Castro, Khomeini, Bashar al Assad, and all the other Hitlers we wanted to kill, or tried to kill but couldn’t kill? The list goes on and on, and on.

I kid you not, if there is anything Americans love more than working a hundred hours a week and buying stuff with credit cards, it is repeatedly killing Adolf Hitler.

You just point at somebody, call him Hitler, and Americans are ready to help you kill him.

And, even if someone isn’t technically Hitler, as long as those respectable news sources tell us it’s OK to kill them... well, that’s usually good enough for us.

For example, if you’re messing around with our “interests,” like maybe interfering with our corporations’ exploitation of your Central American country, we will have no choice but to fund and train some sadistic death squads to hideously torture and murder your people until you come to your senses.

Or, if you’re even considering aligning with some annoying, fanatically religious regime that deposed the puppet we installed in their country, and that is sitting in the middle of the Middle East screwing up our restructuring plans, and which the Russians won’t let us tactically nuke, well, we’ll have to help our friends, the Saudis, bomb the living Allah out of you, starve your women and children to death, and otherwise wipe you off the face of the Earth.

So let’s not suddenly get all squeamish about killing Hitler or... you know, whoever. Killing Hitlers, and other bogeymen, and innocent men, women, and children is as American as apple pie, not to mention an extremely profitable business. So what’s the problem here, exactly? Either Trump is Hitler or he isn’t Hitler. If he’s Hitler, and a traitorous Russian agent, like all those respected media sources, and those anonymous “Intelligence Community” sources, and those people on Twitter say he is, what the hell is taking so long?

Why doesn’t somebody get in there and kill him? What good are all these black ops types if they can’t even save America from Hitler?

I don’t know, maybe the ruling classes don’t believe they have generated enough public support with all their “resistance” and “Hitler” stuff to brutally assassinate the president on television (which is hard to fathom, given the relentless propaganda campaign they’ve been concertedly waging).

Perhaps it needs to be a grassroots effort. In which case, maybe the Democratic Party, Bill Kristol, Rob Reiner, Rachel Maddow, Michael Moore, General Hayden, Hillary Clinton, Alec Baldwin, the Editorial Board of The New York Times, and other key Resistance fighters could organize a “March to Assassinate Trump.”

People could break out their pussyhats again. Everyone loves those pussyhats!

They could march on CIA headquarters in Langley. Just think of all the signs and slogans … “SCREW DEMOCRACY, JUST KILL HIM ALREADY!” “WHAT WOULD WILLIAM CASEY DO?” and the always popular call and response, “TELL ME WHAT THE DEEP STATE LOOKS LIKE … THIS IS WHAT THE DEEP STATE LOOKS LIKE!” The possibilities are almost endless!

I’m not saying it would be a cakewalk... or that there wouldn’t be any kind of blowback. The Resistance would likely catch a little flak from the millions of toothless, Oxy-addicted, white supremacist Nazis that voted for the guy.

There would probably be a bit of 'civil unrest', but then, what’s the point of militarizing virtually every major police force in the country if you’re not prepared to turn them loose on the citizenry every once and while?

And anyway, the main thing is, regardless of how messy things would probably get, it would provide the global capitalist ruling classes with an opportunity to remind these unruly “populists” what happens when you vote for Hitler!

Published:10/23/2018 11:31:31 PM
[The Blog] Barletta to Casey: How dare you attack me over children’s cancer while my grandson gets treatment for it

"This is the lowest thing I've ever seen."

The post Barletta to Casey: How dare you attack me over children’s cancer while my grandson gets treatment for it appeared first on Hot Air.

Published:10/15/2018 8:14:52 PM
[Markets] Snyder: Americans Are More Radicalized Than Ever, Country Spiraling Toward Civil War

Authored by Michael Snyder via The American Dream blog,

Now that Brett Kavanaugh has officially been confirmed, it is a good time to reflect upon where we are at as a nation. 

And where we are at is a nation that is rapidly moving toward a state of civil war.  At one time we were a nation that was united by shared values, a shared purpose and a shared destiny, but now all of that has been replaced by anger, frustration, bitterness, strife and discord.  The left hates the right and vice versa, and both sides are becoming increasingly radicalized.  And without a doubt we are in a life or death battle for the future of America.  Eventually one side or the other will emerge victorious, and their ideology will become dominant in this country.

Up to this point, there has been a lot of screaming, yelling and protesting, but it isn’t going to take very much to push the nation over the edge into violence.

On a daily basis the pot is being stirred by our leading politicians and the mainstream media, and it is very difficult to see any way that this story is going to end well.

Early on Sunday, the Drudge Report was being headlined by an Axios story about “the radicalization of our public lives”…

It’s going to get worse. Virtually every major American institution is being radicalized — or being reshaped by the radicalization of our public lives.

You see this most vividly in politics, where the White House and Congress are often the cause and effect of the radicalization. You now see it in the courts and the Supreme Court, in particular, where a narrow, party-line vote made Brett Kavanaugh the next justice after a nasty, personal political brawl. Already, lawyer Michael Avenatti is calling for a new Democratic litmus test: increasing the size of the court to 11 from nine.

In particular, it is on the left where we have seen the most extreme radicalization.  This is something that President Trump commented on during his most recent rally

“Just imagine the devastation they would cause if they of their obtained the power they so desperately want and crave,” Trump added. “You don’t hand matches to an arsonist and you don’t give power to an angry left-wing mob, and that’s what they have become.

Trump then used Kavanaugh’s example to illustrate why conservatives need to vote during the midterm elections in four weeks so that Democrats don’t take back the House:

“You have to vote,” Trump insisted. “On November 6 you will have the chance to stop the radical Democrats — and that’s what they have become — by electing a Republican House and a Republican Senate. We will increase our majorities. We need more Republicans. We need more Republicans.

“The Democrats have become too extreme and too dangerous to govern,” Trump continued. “Republicans believe in the rule of law not the rule of the mob.”

Of course if Hillary Clinton had won the election, there are millions upon millions of Americans that would not have been willing to be governed by her either.

We are rapidly getting to the point where America is simply going to be ungovernable.

In order for any government to function, a certain percentage of the population must be willing to recognize that government as legitimate.  For example, if everybody in the country suddenly decided to quit paying taxes there wouldn’t be too much that the federal government could do about it.  They could put some of us in prison to try to scare the rest of us back in line, but if the rest of us refused to be intimidated our system of taxation would collapse.

Every system of government depends upon the fact that most people will willingly submit to it, and we are rapidly getting to the point where a large portion of the population will not submit to being governed.

Just consider what just took place in Washington.  As Brett Kavanaugh was being sworn in, protesters were literally banging on and clawing the doors of the Supreme Court building…

But perhaps no incident better expressed the protesters’ tenuous hold on sanity than a demonstration at the Supreme Court, where protesters — mostly women — broke through a police line and barged to the Court’s chamber, where they proceeded to wail, gnash teeth, and pound at the doors while Kavanaugh was being sworn in inside.

Some of the protesters, who managed to get all the way through to the doors themselves, tried desperately to claw their way in, even though the doors were clearly locked (and look very heavy).

If you have not seen this yet, you can watch footage of this happening on Facebook right here.

And Chad Pergram is reporting that Republican senators had death threats texted to their personal phones…

Colleague Peter Doocy rpts a GOP senator says senators have had death threats texted to their person phones. Calls that “unusual.” Also says some senators who flew home after Kavanaugh vote were accompanied by police for protection

In a subsequent tweet, Pergram also reported that a gruesome beheading video was actually sent to the phone of Cory Gardner’s wife…

Amid Kavanaugh furor & threats to mbrs, Sen. Cory Gardner (R-CO) tells Fox that his wife received a text with a video attachment showing a gruesome beheading. Someone has has also released the names of and addresses of his family members.

Can you imagine how you would feel if that happened to you?

Many of these leftist protesters are extremely passionate about protecting abortion rights.  To be honest, I wish that those on the right were just as passionate about defending the lives of the unborn.

Because the truth is that Brett Kavanaugh has never said that he intends to overturn Roe v. Wade.  In fact, during her speech on the floor of the U.S. Senate explaining why she was voting for Kavanaugh, U.S. Senator Susan Collins admitted that Kavanaugh essentially promised her that he would not vote to overturn Roe v. Wade

Most notably, Collins said in her explanation of why she was not worried that Kavanaugh would overturn Roe that Kavanaugh had told her when they were discussing his nomination that he did not think five sitting justices—a majority of the nine member court—would be a sufficient number “to overturn long-established precedent.”

This was after he had testified, she noted, that Roe–upheld by Casey–was “precedent on precedent.”

“Finally, in his testimony, he noted repeatedly that Roe had been upheld by Planned Parenthood v. Casey, describing it as precedent on precedent,” said Collins in her floor speech. “When I asked him whether it would be sufficient to overturn a long-established precedent if five current Justices believed it was wrongly decided, he emphatically said no.”

Kavanaugh didn’t just say no.

He “emphatically said no“.

After everything that happened, the ironic thing is that Kavanaugh getting on to the Supreme Court is a loss for conservatives, but nobody on the right wants to admit this.  We got fooled by Justice Kennedy, we got fooled by Sandra Day O’Connor, we got fooled by David Souter, and now we have just been fooled again.

Kavanaugh clerked for Justice Kennedy, and he is cut from the exact same cloth as his mentor.  Kennedy was one of the key votes to uphold Roe v. Wade in the Casey decision, and he actually wrote the opinion for the case that legalized gay marriage in America.  It is rumored that Kennedy would not retire until he was assured that Kavanaugh would be nominated in his place, because he knew that Kavanaugh would be the exact same type of Supreme Court justice that he had been.

So conservatives should not be celebrating this “victory” at all.

But what this confirmation process did prove is that we are closer to chaos on the streets of America than ever before.  In fact, a recent New York Post articlesuggested that America “could be sleepwalking into a second civil war”…

To be clear, what we just witnessed, and what we have seen for two years, is not a case of mere political differences, which the Founders recognized as inevitable and even desirable.

Instead, we face something more akin to the combustible climate historian Christopher Clark described as the origins of World War I. In his book, “The Sleepwalkers: How Europe Went to War in 1914,” Clark illustrates how none of the great powers wanted war, but all felt free to escalate the build-up in the certainty that the other side would back down.

Something similar is happening here, and our nation could be sleepwalking into a second civil war. Even though justice and fairness prevailed this time, the stained confirmation process must serve as a wake-up alarm.

This time around, however, it won’t be a battle between two opposing armies from two distinct geographic regions.

Instead, it will be a conflict between two very different ideologies.  So far, it has mostly been a “cold war”, but as both sides become increasingly radicalized I fear for what the future may soon bring…

Published:10/9/2018 5:10:07 PM
[Entertainment] Alyssa Milano cheered on Matt Damon, the guy who defended Louis C.K. and Casey Affleck, for his portrayal of Brett Kavanaugh on SNL

Saturday Night Live brought in actor Matt Damon to portray Brett Kavanaugh for the cold open of last night’s season premiere: Now it’s time to hear from Judge Brett Kavanaugh (Matt Damon). #SNLPremiere pic.twitter.com/dvu1VgJZt5 — Saturday Night Live – SNL (@nbcsnl) September 30, 2018 That would be the same Matt Damon who defended Hollywood sickos […]

The post Alyssa Milano cheered on Matt Damon, the guy who defended Louis C.K. and Casey Affleck, for his portrayal of Brett Kavanaugh on SNL appeared first on twitchy.com.

Published:9/30/2018 8:41:27 AM
[Entertainment] Shawn Mendes Takes Fans on the Road in His YouTube Documentary Shawn MendesThere's nothin' holding Shawn Mendes back. The superstar is the latest music superstar to be featured in YouTube Music's Artist Spotlight Story. Directed by Casey Neistat, it...
Published:9/28/2018 12:27:50 PM
[Apps] Instagram denies it’s building Regramming. Here’s why it’d be a disaster Instagram tells me Regramming, or the ability to instantly repost someone else’s feed post to your followers like a retweet, is “not happening”, not being built, and not being tested. And that’s good news for all Instagrammers. The denial comes after it initially issued a “no comment” to The Verge’s Casey Newton, who published that […] Published:9/21/2018 1:26:41 PM
[Politics] Pennsylvania Senate: Casey (D) 52%, Barletta (R) 38%

Incumbent Democrat Bob Casey Jr. appears comfortably on his way to reelection in Pennsylvania’s U.S. Senate race.

The first Rasmussen Reports telephone and online survey of the race finds Casey with the support of 52% of Likely Pennsylvania voters to Republican Congressman Lou Barletta’s 38%. Two percent (2%) like some other candidate, and eight percent (8%) are undecided. (To see survey question wording, click here.)

Rasmussen Reports invites you to be a part of our first-ever Citizen-Sourced National Midterm Election Polling Project. Learn more about how you can contribute.

(Want a free daily email update? If it's in the news, it's in our polls). Rasmussen Reports updates are also available on Twitter or Facebook.

The survey of 800 Likely Voters in Pennsylvania was conducted on September 12-13, 2018 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 3.5 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. Field work for all Rasmussen Reports surveys is conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, LLC. See methodology.

Published:9/20/2018 2:41:31 AM
[Entertainment] Riverdale's Camila Mendes and Charles Melton Spark Romance Rumors Camila Mendes, Charles MeltonCamila Mendes and Charles Melton might be Riverdale's newest and hottest couple. The two Riverdale stars were spotted with their cast mates Casey Cott and Lili Reinhart at the movies...
Published:9/19/2018 10:06:21 PM
[Politics] Pennsylvania Senate: Casey (D) 52%, Barletta (R) 38%

Incumbent Democrat Bob Casey Jr. appears comfortably on his way to reelection in Pennsylvania’s U.S. Senate race.

The first Rasmussen Reports telephone and online survey of the race finds Casey with the support of 52% of Likely Pennsylvania voters to Republican Congressman Lou Barletta’s 38%. Two percent (2%) like some other candidate, and eight percent (8%) are undecided. (To see survey question wording, click here.)

Rasmussen Reports invites you to be a part of our first-ever Citizen-Sourced National Midterm Election Polling Project. Learn more about how you can contribute.

(Want a free daily email update? If it's in the news, it's in our polls). Rasmussen Reports updates are also available on Twitter or Facebook.

The survey of 800 Likely Voters in Pennsylvania was conducted on September 12-13, 2018 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 3.5 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. Field work for all Rasmussen Reports surveys is conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, LLC. See methodology.

Published:9/19/2018 11:00:38 AM
[8d3ed46f-a934-4393-b1fb-2ecd52729e0a] Casey Affleck calls brother Ben Affleck 'brave' for returning to rehab Casey Affleck called his brother Ben Affleck “brave” for returning to rehab and said he’s looking forward to seeing the actor “back on his feet.” Published:9/11/2018 9:12:59 AM
[Entertainment] Are #MeToo men ready for a comeback? Not all accused figures have slunk away in shame Nearly a year after the #MeToo movement exploded in the culture, a surprising number of the accused have suffered little career damage and are already back at work.
     
 
 
Published:8/28/2018 6:33:56 AM
[Markets] Not Just China Anymore: "Facial Biometrics" Scan Used To Catch Imposter At D.C. Airport

A year ago we explained how what at first seemed like creeping tip-toe incrementalism toward the use of biometric ID for travel is quickly becoming a warp-speed reality.

At that time DHS and U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) announced that they would integrate government databases with a private company to speed up biometric processing in an experimental test program initially rolled out only at a couple of select airports. Since that time the program has exploded to include a dozen or more international airports

It's essentially what China has already implemented on a large, Orwellian scale, and involves plans for possible mandatory face scans for all travelers to foreign destinations. And US officials are now touting the technology's recent use at Washington Dulles International Airport to catch an alleged imposter traveling on a fake passport

According to the government and contract industry defense tech news site NextGov:

CBP officials at Washington Dulles International Airport Wednesday said the newly implemented facial biometric program identified a 26-year-old Congolese man attempting to enter the U.S. using a French passport.

The man, traveling from Sao Paulo, Brazil on Tuesday, went through the new international entry system at Dulles Airport, which brings travelers directly to a CBP officer for document inspection. While the documents are being scanned, a biometric camera analyzes the passenger’s face and compares it against records associated with the passport or other travel documents.

With this first successful case of flagging fake credentials based on the technology, the American public will likely soon be flooded with more "success stories" as federal authorities prepare the American public for more stringent security measures as citizens pass through airport checkpoints. 

In this particular case, the facial recognition technology was only in its third day of use. 

The NextGov report describes further that "In this instance, the system flagged the man as a mismatch for the passport on record and he was removed for additional screening. At that time, officers said he became visibly nervous and an authentic ID card showing he was a citizen of the Republic of Congo was found in his shoe."

Not missing an opportunity to soften American citizens' legitimate concern for privacy in what appears a Minority Report dystopian scenario where people's biometric data could be stored by the feds for all time (DHS officials and program-related documents have previously "promised" this won't happen, and hopes that people will simply take them at their word), DHS officials are hailing this as an "important step forward" in protecting Americans from terrorism and crime

“Facial recognition technology is an important step forward for CBP in protecting the United States from all types of threats,” says Casey Durst, director of CBP's Baltimore Field Office, in a public statement after the Dulles incident. “Terrorists and criminals continually look for creative methods to enter the U.S. including using stolen genuine documents. The new facial recognition technology virtually eliminates the ability for someone to use a genuine document that was issued to someone else.”

Noting that 14 more airports have integrated biometric procedures this summer alone, the NextGov report notes this not-too-comforting fact: "The programs are also extending beyond customs to the entire air travel system. A pilot program at JFK International Airport in New York was recently expanded to integrate the system with Transportation Security Administration checkpoints."

Facial recognition scan in action at TSA screening point. Image via NBC News

Meanwhile one notable outspoken critic of the program, Harrison Rudolph, who runs the Center on Privacy and Technology at Georgetown University Law School says the technology may actually at times falsely identify people, and that the potential permanent government database storage is a legitimate looming concern. 

The privacy researcher was cited by NPR last Spring"DHS doesn't seem to know whether its system will falsely reject folks," that is, be unable to match the face scan with photos it has in the system, at higher rates because of their race or gender. "That's a serious problem," he says.

Rudolph said further, "DHS hasn't issued a single rule under this program to protect Americans' privacy," and added, "So what DHS decides to do with this information tomorrow, I'm not sure. And without rules there may be few protections for Americans' privacy."

With such issues left completely unsettled, and with the government claiming it would never, never abuse such a technology... the consistent refrain in reports over the last year has been its fast coming to an airport near you.

Published:8/25/2018 7:07:13 PM
[Markets] "Facebook Enshrines Stupidity!" Doug Casey Dumps On Social Media's Ubiquity

Authored by Joel Bowman via InternationalMan.com,

Joel Bowman: G’day, Doug. Thanks for speaking with us today.

Doug Casey: No problem, Joel. It’s a pleasure to hear your Australian accent come across the ether from Mexico.

Joel: Let’s dive right in. A week or two ago, Facebook registered the largest single day loss for any one company in stock market history – roughly $122 billion. CEO Mark Zuckerberg lost around $15 billion himself, as much as the annual GDP of several resource-rich, West African nations.

Looking back to 2000, during the go-go days of the dot.com boom, Intel and Microsoft both registered staggering single-day losses, too… $90 billion and $80 billion, respectively. And we know what happened next in that case...

So, investors want to know… is past prologue? What’s next for Silicon Valley’s tech darlings?

Doug: Talking about losing multiple billions in a single day, it’s really a sign of the times. I remember when the only billionaires in the world were Howard Hughes, John Paul Getty and John Beresford Tipton-- the mythical billionaire on a 1950’s-era show called “The Millionaire.”

These days, however, it seems everyone’s a billionaire. In fact, there are several thousand billionaires roaming the planet today, with new ones being minted almost every day.

Of course, much of this so-called wealth is just paper. It’s not real. In fact, it’s pretty clear to me that we’re in a stock market bubble. Which is being driven by the bond market hyper-bubble. And that, in turn, is fueling a real estate bubble, which I believe is just now beginning to deflate in major cities around the world.

None of this augurs well for the stock market. You’ve got bubbles all over the place. Except in the resource market. That’s the one place that hasn’t inflated. In fact, it’s been going down since it’s last peak in 2011.

Getting back to Facebook, I hope it goes bankrupt. I hate it as an institution. I hate what it does. I don’t like its policies. I don’t like its management. I don’t like the fact that it’s causing people to destroy whatever privacy they have left. While turning their brains to mush sending out selfies all day.

Joel: You’ve put a lot on the table there, Doug. Let’s unpack a bit of that, starting with the general tendency toward cerebral rot…

Many younger readers may not remember this, but there actually existed a time before everybody knew everything, when people had to read books and discuss them, engage in healthy debate and rigorous dialectic in order to learn and develop intellectually.

Now that everyone apparently has plenty of time to Instagram their kale salads and “like” one and other’s cat pictures, are we to assume mankind has finally reached the End of Learning…some new Age of Enlightenment?

Or might Facebook and its (anti)social media cousins represent – in addition to the potential fallout for investors – another, hidden cost to society?

Doug: Perhaps humanity is bifurcating into the Morlocks and the Eloi at this point. It’s true that people used to go to libraries. But even the Library of Congress has only a tiny fraction the world’s data available; libraries are quaint and delightful, but they’re dinosaurs.

All the knowledge in the world is now at our fingertips on the Internet. The Internet is one of the greatest inventions in history, on a par with moveable type and the Gutenburg printing press. A few people are using it to educate and better themselves—but relatively few.

Most people just use it for trivial amusement, as you mentioned. Facebook adds very little value to the equation. In fact, I can’t see that it does much that’s productive. It’s basically a vehicle for gossip and watching cat videos.

Joel: And it’s less than that. Aside from the general degradation of public discourse, social media also represents a kind of unalterable historical record of bad jokes and regrettable moments, accessible to anyone who may wish to besmirch one’s character or skittle one’s reputation.

We’ve all said things we wish we hadn’t. To err is to be human, after all. What do you make of a world in which everyone’s worst moments are readily available to everyone else – including potential enemies – at the click of a mouse?

Doug: Facebook enshrines stupidity. A heavy Facebook user is, in effect, saying: “Look at me! I’m a thoughtless person who doesn’t have anything better to do with his time”. That’s on top of the fact that users are exposing their thoughts, actions, and whereabouts to the NSA, the FBI, the CIA and any of a hundred other nefarious agencies. In fact, there are credible allegations that Facebook, along with Google and Amazon, are willing tools of these intelligence agencies. No good can come of being a Facebookista.

But that’s about whether you should use Facebook. Whether you should own Facebook stock is a different question. Even after the recent selloff, Facebook still has a market cap of about $500 billion, which impresses me as a lot for a chat site cum advertising vehicle. Especially one where most of its growth is behind it. A lot of users are getting hip to the fact they’re not customers, they’re the product.

Facebook was a clever innovation ten years ago. But you know, there’s an old saying in the stock market: High Tech, Big Wreck!

Just as Myspace was displaced by Facebook, I predict Facebook 2.0 will come along and replace Facebook. My understanding is that kids now see Facebook as something used by old people-- people over 21 years of age. So if it’s going nowhere with the younger generation, where’s it’s future? Maybe it picks up a billion new users in the Third World. Ultimately, what’s that worth?

Facebook may not be a terminal short sale, but I certainly won’t be putting any of my own money into the stock.

Joel: Assuming you’re correct and Facebook 2.0 does displace the current market leader, are you hopeful that such a platform may serve to promote a heightened level of discourse? Perhaps people might find their way into “phyles,” that is, subgroups based on commonly shared values that actually have real world meaning?

Doug: I hope that, in a year or two, International Man itself grows into a community of like-minded people with above average I.Q.s, libertarian values, and real world experience. IM might, itself, even branch off to become its own kind of Facebook. A private version.

I know there’s a lot of talk about regulating FB, or breaking it up. That’s a bad idea; the government should have zero to do with business in general—and areas related to free speech in particular. I’m disgusted by the fact FB has kicked Alex Jones and others off their platform. But they have a right to do so, as a private company. Although, on the other hand, they’re almost a creature of the State.

But that’s not an excuse for the government to “step in”. What will happen is that a newer, better Facebook lookalike—or a dozen of them—will replace them. FB will self-destruct. It’s a non-problem.

To be frank, you and I don’t really have that much in common with most of the 7.3 billion people on this planet. In fact, while I like many individual humans, I despise humanity in general. The more people you put together in a group, the more they act like chimpanzees. Big groups force down the lowest common denominator.

There’s some cause for optimism, but only on a person-to-person basis. I prefer the company of people who value free minds and free markets—and I suspect most people who are reading this now feel the same way.

Joel: That’s probably a very good note to end this conversation on, Doug. Thanks, as always, for taking the time.

Doug: Meanwhile, we’ll look for something with the potential of Facebook in 2008… and stay away from Facebook today.

Published:8/18/2018 4:45:15 PM
[Entertainment] Casey Affleck on harassment allegations: 'I behaved in a way that was really unprofessional' Casey Affleck is apologizing for allowing an unprofessional atmosphere on set which led to two civil lawsuits from women he worked with that were later settled.
     
 
 
Published:8/9/2018 4:24:24 PM
[241c933b-24c1-4af1-a28d-93251014f28e] Casey Affleck addresses sexual misconduct claims: I was 'really unprofessional' and 'I'm sorry' With a new movie coming out this fall, "The Old Man & The Gun," Casey Affleck is speaking publicly about bowing out of presenting the best actress Oscar and past harassment allegations against him amid the #MeToo and Time's Up movements. Published:8/9/2018 3:53:03 PM
[Entertainment] Casey Affleck steps back into the spotlight Casey Affleck talks about acting opposite Robert Redford in "The Old Man and the Gun" and directing Elisabeth Moss in forthcoming movie "Light of My Life." (Aug. 9)
     
 
 
Published:8/9/2018 3:53:03 PM
[Politics] What They Told Us: Reviewing Last Week’s Key Polls

President Trump, who is making a series of campaign stops for Republicans facing 2018 midterm election battles, will be in Central Ohio tonight stumping for Republican House candidate Troy Balderson. Trump on Thursday attended a rally in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania, to back Representative Lou Barletta’s challenge for the Senate seat of Democrat Bob Casey.

Rasmussen Reports invites you to be a part of our first-ever Citizen-Sourced National Midterm Election Polling Project.  Learn more about how you can contribute.    

Published:8/4/2018 6:30:17 AM
[2018 Election] Key to the Keystone State (Scott Johnson) President Trump traveled to Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania to speak at one of his patented campaign-style rallies last night. In this case he spoke in support of Senate candidate Rep. Lou Barletta, who is challenging incumbent Democrat Bob Casey on the ballot in November. Barletta is the former mayor of Hazelton, Pennsylvania. Read all about it in the devastating City Journal essay by Bob McElwee, “Chain migration comes to Hazelton.” Barletta made Published:8/3/2018 7:52:59 AM
[World] Donald Trump Rally in Pennsylvania: Rips Bob Casey as Sleepin' Bob Supporting Lou Barletta

President Donald Trump ripped incumbent Pennsylvania Democratic Sen. Bob Casey Jr. at a rally for 2018 challenger Rep. Lou Barletta (R-Hazleton).

Published:8/2/2018 7:20:47 PM
[Markets] Debunking The Putin Panic With Stephen Cohen

Via TheRealNews.com,

Part 1

President Trump’s warm words for Vladimir Putin and his failure to endorse U.S. intelligence community claims about alleged Russian meddling have been called “treasonous” and the cause of a “national security crisis.” There is a crisis, says Prof. Stephen F. Cohen, but one of our own making...

AARON MATE: It’s The Real News. I’m Aaron Mate.

The White House is walking back another statement from President Trump about Russia and U.S. intelligence. It began in Helsinki on Monday, when at his press conference with Vladimir Putin, Trump did not endorse the claim that Russia meddled in the 2016 election. After an outcry that played out mostly on cable news, Trump appeared to retract that view one day later. But then on Wednesday, Trump was asked if he believes Russia is now targeting the U.S. ahead of the midterms.

DONALD TRUMP: [Thank] you all very much. Appreciate it. Thank you. Thank you.

REPORTER: Is Russia still targeting the U.S. [inaudible]. No, you don’t believe that to be the case?

DONALD TRUMP: Thank you very much, everyone. We’re doing very well. We are doing very well, and we’re doing very well, probably as well as anybody has ever done with Russia. And there’s been no president ever as tough as I have been on Russia. All you have to do is look at the numbers, look at what we’ve done, look at sanctions, look at ambassadors. Not there. Look, unfortunately, at what happened in Syria recently. I think President Putin knows that better than anybody. Certainly a lot better than the media.

AARON MATE: The White House later claimed that when Trump said ‘no,’ he meant no to answering questions. But Trump’s contradiction of U.S. intelligence claims has brought the Russiagate story, one that has engulfed his presidency, to a fever pitch. Prominent U.S. figures have called Trump’s comments in Helsinki treasonous, and compared alleged Russian e-mail hacking and social media activity to 9/11 and Pearl Harbor. Those who also question intelligence claims or warmongering with Russia have been dubbed traitors, or Kremlin agents.

Speaking to MSNBC, the former U.S. ambassador to Russia Michael McFaul declared that with Trump’s comments, the U.S. is in the midst of a national security crisis.

MICHAEL MCFAUL: Republicans need to step up. They need to speak out, not just the familiar voices, because this is a national security crisis, and the president of the United States flew all the way to Finland, met with Vladimir Putin, and basically capitulated. It felt like appeasement.

AARON MATE: Well, joining me to address this so-called national security crisis is Stephen Cohen, professor emeritus at New York University and Princeton University. His books include “Failed Crusade: America and the Tragedy of Post-Soviet Russia,” and “Soviet Fates and Lost Alternatives: From Stalinism to the New Cold War.” Professor Cohen, welcome. I imagine that you might agree with the view that we are in the midst of a national security crisis when it comes to Russia, but for far different reasons than those expounded on by Ambassador McFaul.

STEPHEN COHEN: There is a national security crisis, and there is a Russian threat. And we, we ourselves here in the United States, have created both of them. This has been true for years, and now it’s reached crisis proportion. Notice what’s going on. A mainstream TV reporter shouts to President Trump, “Are the Russians still targeting our elections?” This is in the category “Are you still beating your wife?” There is no proof that the Russians have targeted or attacked our elections. But it’s become axiomatic. What kind of media is that, are the Russians still, still attacking our elections.

And what Michael McFaul, whom I’ve known for years, formerly Ambassador McFaul, purportedly a scholar and sometimes a scholar said, it is simply the kind of thing, to be as kind as I can, that I heard from the John Birch Society about President Eisenhower when he went to meet Khrushchev when I was a kid growing up in Kentucky. This is fringe discourse that never came anywhere near the mainstream before, at least after Joseph McCarthy, that the president went, committed treason, and betrayed the country. Trump may have not done the right thing at the summit, because agreements were reached. Nobody discusses the agreements. But to stage a kangaroo trial of the president of the United States in the mainstream media, and have plenty of once-dignified people come on and deliver the indictment, is without precedent in this country. And it has created a national crisis in our relations with Russia. So yes, there’s a national crisis.

AARON MATE: Let me play for you a clip from Trump’s news conference with Putin that also drew outrage back in the U.S. When he was asked about the state of U.S.-Russia relations, he said both sides had responsibility.

DONALD TRUMP: Yes, I do. I hold both countries responsible. I think that the United States has been foolish. I think we’ve all been foolish. We should have had this dialogue a long time ago. A long time, frankly, before I got to office. And I think we’re all to blame. I think that the United States now has stepped forward, along with Russia, and we’re getting together, and we have a chance to do some great things. Whether it’s nuclear proliferation, in terms of stopping, because we have to do it. Ultimately that’s probably the most important thing that we can be working on.

AARON MATE: That’s President Trump in Helsinki. Professor Cohen, I imagine that this comment probably was part of the reason why there was so much outrage, not Just of what Trump said about the claims of Russian meddling in the election. Can you talk about the significance of what he said here, and how it contradicts the, the entire consensus of the bipartisan foreign policy establishment?

STEPHEN COHEN: I did not vote for President Trump. But for that I salute him, what he just said. So far as I can remember, no wiser words or more important words have been spoken by the American president about Russia and the Soviet Union since Ronald Reagan did his great detente with Mikhail Gorbachev in the late 1980s. What Trump just did, and I don’t- we never know, Aaron, how aware he is of the ramifications of what he says. But in this case, whether he fully understood it or not, he just broke with, and the first time any major political figure in the United States has broken with the orthodoxy, ever since at least 2000. And even going back to the ’90s. That all the conflicts we’ve had with post-Soviet Russia, after communism went away in Russia, all those conflicts, which I call a new and more dangerous Cold War, are solely, completely, the fault of Putin or Putin’s Russia. That nothing in American policy since Bill Clinton in the 1990s did anything to contribute seriously to the very dangerous conflict, confrontation we have with Russia today. It was all Russia’s fault.

What that has meant, and you know this, Aaron, because you live in this world as well, it has meant no media or public dialogue about the merits of American policy toward post-Soviet Russia from Clinton, certainly through Obama. It may be changing now under President Trump. Not sure. It means if we don’t have a debate, we’re not permitted to ask, did we do something wrong, or so unwise that it led to this even more dangerous Cold War? And if the debate leads to a conclusion that we did do something unwise, and that we’re still doing it, then arises the pressure and the imperative for any new policy toward Russia. None of that has been permitted, because the orthodoxy, the dogma, the axiom, is Putin alone has solely been responsible.

So you know, you know as well as I do what is excluded. It doesn’t matter that we moved NATO to Russia’s borders, that’s not significant. Or that we bombed Serbia, Russia’s traditional ally. Or that George Bush left the Antiballistic Missile Treaty, which was the bedrock of Russian nuclear security and, I would argue, our own. Or that we did regime change by military might in Iraq and Libya, and many other things. Or that we provoked the Ukrainian crisis in 2004, and supported the coup that overthrew a legitimate, elected, constitutional president there. None of that matters. Oh, it was kind of footnotes to the real narrative. And the narrative is, is that a Russian leader Vladimir Putin in power was a horrible aggressor. Killed everybody, somehow, with secret poisons or thieves in the night who opposed him. And began this new cold or even worse war with the United States.

No historian of any merit will ever write the story that way. It’s factually, analytically, simply untrue. Now Trump has said something radically different. We got here in these dire circumstances because both sides acted unwisely, and we should have had this discussion a long time ago. So for that, two cheers for President Trump. But whether he can inspire the discussion that he may wish to, considering the fact that he’s now being indicted as a criminal for having met Putin, is a big question.

AARON MATE: So a few questions. You mentioned that some agreements were made, but details on that have been vague. So do you have any sense of what concretely came out of this summit? There was talk about cooperation on nuclear weapons, possibly renewing the New START Treaty. We know that Putin offered that to Trump when he first came into office, but Trump rejected it. There was talk about cooperating in Syria. And, well, yeah, if I can put that question to you first, and then I have a follow-up about what might be motivating Trump here. But first, what do you think concretely came out of this?

STEPHEN COHEN: Well, look, I know a lot, both as a historian, and I’ve actually participated in some about the history of American-Russian, previously Soviet, summits. Which, by the way, this is the 75th anniversary of the very first one, when Franklin Roosevelt traveled to Tehran to meet Stalin. And every president, and this is important to emphasize, every president since Roosevelt has met with the Kremlin leader. Some many times, or several times. So there’s a long tradition. And therefore there are customs. And one custom, this goes to your question, is that never, except maybe very rarely, but almost never do we learn the full extent and nature of what agreements were made. That usually comes in a week or two or three later, because there’s still the teams of both are hammering out the details.

So that’s exactly what happened at this summit. There was no conspiracy. No, you know, appeasement behind closed doors. The two leaders announced in general terms what they agreed upon. Now, the most important, and this is traditional, too, by meeting they intended to revive the diplomatic process between the United States and Russia which has been badly tattered by events including the exclusion of diplomats, and sanctions, and the rest. So to get active, vigorous diplomacy about many issues going. They may not achieve that goal, because the American media and the political mainstream is trying to stop that. Remember that anything approaching diplomatic negotiations with Russia still less detente, is now being criminalized in the United States. Criminalized. What was once an honorable tradition, the pursuit of detente, is now a capital crime, if we believe these charges against Trump.

So they tried to revive that process, and we’ll see if it’s going to be possible. I think at least behind the scenes it will be. Obviously what you mentioned, both sides now have new, more elusive, more lethal, faster, more precise nuclear weapons. We’ve been developing them for a long time in conjunction with missile defense. We’ve essentially been saying to Russia, you may have equality in nuclear weapons with us, but we have missile defense. Therefore, we could use missile defense to take out your retaliatory capacity. That is, we could stage the first strike on you and you would not be able to retaliate.

Now, everybody who’s lived through the nuclear era knows that’s an invitation to disaster. Because like it or not, we’ve lived with a doctrine called MAD, Mutual Assured Destruction, that one side dare not attack the other with a nuclear weapon because it would be destroyed as well. We were saying we now have this primacy. Putin, then, on March 1 of this year, announced that they have developed weapons that can elude missile defense. And it seems to be true. In the air and at sea, their dodgy, darty, quick thing- but they could avoid our missile defense. So where we are at now is on the cusp of a new nuclear arms race involving more dangerous nuclear weapons. And the current START, New START Treaty will expire, I think, in three or four years. But its expiration date is less important that the process of talking and negotiating and worrying officially about these new weapons had ended.

So essentially what Trump and Putin agreed is that process of concern about new and more dangerous nuclear weapons must now resume immediately. And if there’s anybody living in the United States who think that that is a bad idea they need to reconsider their life, because they may be looking into the darkness of death. So that was excellent. Briefly. What I hope they did- they didn’t announce it, but I’m pretty sure they did- that there had been very close calls between American and Russian combat forces and their proxies in Syria. We’re doing a proxy war, but there are plenty of native Russians and Americans in Syria in a relatively small combat cell. And there have been casualties. The Russians have said at the highest level the next time a Russian is killed in Syria by an American-based weapon, we will strike the American launcher. If Russia strikes our launching pads or areas, whether on land or sea, which means Americans will be there and are killed, call it war. Call it war.

So we need to agree in Syria to do more than, what do they call it, deconfliction, where we have all these warnings. It’s still too much space for mishap. And what I hope it think Trump and Putin did was to try to get a grip on this.

AARON MATE: Stephen F. Cohen, professor emeritus at at Princeton University and New York University, thank you. And stay tuned for part two. I’m Aaron Mate for The Real News.

*  *  *

Part 2

Via TheRealNews.com,

There is much to criticize the Russian president for, says Professor Stephen F. Cohen of Princeton and NYU, but many US political and media claims about Putin are false – and reckless...

AARON MATE: It’s The Real News. I’m Aaron Mate. This is part two with Stephen Cohen, professor emeritus of Russian studies at New York University and Princeton. In part one we talked about the uproar over the Trump-Putin summit, and Trump’s comments about the U.S. intelligence community and about cooperation with Russia. Now in part two we’re going to get to some of the main talking points that have been pervasive throughout corporate media, talking about the stated reasons for why pundits and politicians say they are opposed to Trump sitting down with Putin.

So let me start with Jon Meacham. He is a historian. And speaking to CNN, he worried that Trump, with his comments about NATO calling on the alliance to pay more, and calling into question, he worried about the possibility that Trump won’t come to the aid of Baltic states in the event that Russia invades.

JON MEACHAM: And what worries me most is the known unknown, as Donald Rumsfeld might put it, of what happens next. Let’s say Putin- just look at this whole week of the last five, six days in total. What happens if Putin launches military action against, say, the Baltics? What, what is it that President Trump, what about his comments that NATO suggest thar he would follow an invocation of Article 5 and actually project American force in defense of the values that not only do we have an intellectual and moral assent to, but a contractual one, a treaty one. I think that’s the great question going forward.

AARON MATE: OK. So that’s Jon Meacham speaking to CNN. So, Professor Cohen, putting aside what he said there about our intellectual values and strong tradition, just on the issue of Trump, of Putin posing a potential threat and possibly invading the Baltics, is that a realistic possibility?

STEPHEN COHEN: So, I’m not sure what you’re asking me about. The folly of NATO expansion? The fact that every president in my memory has asked the Europeans to pay more? But can we be real? Can we be real? The only country that’s attacked that region of Europe militarily since the end of the Soviet Union was the United States of America. As I recall, we bombed Serbia, a, I say this so people understand, a traditional Christian country, under Bill Clinton, bombed Serbia for about 80 days. There is no evidence that Russia has ever bombed a European country.

You tell me, Aaron. You must be a smart guy, because you got your own television show. Why would Putin want to launch a military attack and occupy the Baltics? So he has to pay the pensions there? Which he’s having a hard time already paying in Russia, and therefore has had to raise the pension age, and thereby lost 10 percentage points of popularity in two weeks? Why in the world can we, can we simply become rational people. Why in the world would Russia want to attack and occupy Latvia, Lithuania, and Estonia? The only reason I can think of is that many, many of my friends love to take their summer vacations there. And maybe some crazy person thinks that if we occupy it, vacations will be cheaper. It’s crazy. It’s beyond crazy. It’s a kind-.

AARON MATE: Professor Cohen, if you were on CNN right now I imagine that the anchor would say to you, well, okay, but one could say the same thing about Georgia in 2008. Why did Russia attack Georgia then?

STEPHEN COHEN: I’m not aware that Russia attacked Georgia. The European Commission, if you’re talking about the 2008 war, the European Commission, investigating what happened, found that Georgia, which was backed by the United States, fighting with an American-built army under the control of the, shall we say, slightly unpredictable Georgian president then, Saakashvili, that he began the war by firing on Russian enclaves. And the Kremlin, which by the way was not occupied by Putin, but by Michael McFaul and Obama’s best friend and reset partner then-president Dmitry Medvedev, did what any Kremlin leader, what any leader in any country would have had to do: it reacted. It sent troops across the border through the tunnel, and drove the Georgian forces out of what essentially were kind of Russian protectorate areas of Georgia.

So that- Russia didn’t begin that war. And it didn’t begin the one in Ukraine, either. We did that by [continents], the overthrow of the Ukrainian president in [20]14 after President Obama told Putin that he would not permit that to happen. And I think it happened within 36 hours. The Russians, like them or not, feel that they have been lied to and betrayed. They use this word, predatl’stvo, betrayal, about American policy toward Russia ever since 1991, when it wasn’t just President George Bush, all the documents have been published by the National Security Archive in Washington, all the leaders of the main Western powers promised the Soviet Union that under Gorbachev, if Gorbachev would allow a reunited Germany to be NATO, NATO would not, in the famous expression, move two inches to the east.

Now NATO is sitting on Russia’s borders from the Baltic to Ukraine. So Russians aren’t fools, and they’re good-hearted, but they become resentful. They’re worried about being attacked by the United States. In fact, you read and hear in the Russian media daily, we are under attack by the United States. And this is a lot more real and meaningful than this crap that is being put out that Russia somehow attacked us in 2016. I must have been sleeping. I didn’t see Pearl Harbor or 9/11 and 2016. This is reckless, dangerous, warmongering talk. It needs to stop. Russia has a better case for saying they’ve been attacked by us since 1991. We put our military alliance on the front door. Maybe it’s not an attack, but it looks like one, feels like one. Could be one.

AARON MATE: OK. And in a moment I want to speak to you more about Ukraine, because we’ve heard Crimea invoked a lot in the criticism of Putin of late. But first I want to actually to ask you about a domestic issue. This one is it’s widely held that Putin is responsible for the killing of journalists and opposition activists who oppose him. And on this front I want to play for you a clip of Joe Cirincione. He is the head of the Ploughshares Fund. And this is what he said this week in an appearance on Democracy Now!.

JOE CIRINCIONE: Both of these men are dangerous. Both of these men oppress basic human rights, basic freedoms. Both of them think the press are the enemy of the people. Putin goes further. He kills journalists. He has them assassinated on the streets of Moscow.

Donald Trump does not go that far yet. But I think what Putin is doing is using the president of the United States to project his rule, to increase his power, to carry out his agenda in Syria, with Europe, et cetera, and that Trump is acquiescing to that for reasons that are not yet clear.

AARON MATE: That’s Joe Cirincione.

STEPHEN COHEN: I know him well. It’s worse than that. It’s worse than that.

AARON MATE: Well Yes. There’s two issues here, Professor Cohen. One is the state of the crackdown on press freedoms in Russia, which I’m sure you would say is very much alive, and is a strong part of the Russian system. But let’s first address this widely-held view that Putin is responsible for killing journalists who are critical of him.

STEPHEN COHEN: I know I’m supposed to follow your lead, but I think you’re skipping over a major point. How is it that Joe, who was once one of our most eminent and influential, eloquent opponents of nuclear arms race, who was prepared to have the president of the United States negotiate with every Soviet communist leader, including those who had a lot of blood on their hands, now decide that Putin kills everybody and he’s not a worthy partner? What happened to Joe?

I’ll tell you what happened to him. Trump. Trump has driven once-sensible people completely crazy. Moreover, Joe knows absolutely nothing about internal Russian politics, and he ought to follow my rule. When I don’t know something about something, I say I don’t know. But what he just said is ludicrous. And the sad part is-.

AARON MATE: But it’s widely held. If it’s ludicrous-. But widely held, yeah.

STEPHEN COHEN: Well, the point is that once distinguished and important spokespeople for rightful causes, like ending a nuclear arms race, have been degraded, or degraded themselves by saying things like he said to the point that they’re of utility today only to the proponents of a new nuclear arms race. And he’s not alone. Somebody called it Trump derangement syndrome. I’m not a psychiatrist, but it’s a widespread mania across our land. And when good people succumb to it, we are all endangered.

AARON MATE: But many people would be surprised to hear that, because again, the stories that we get, and there are human rights reports, and it’s just sort of taken as a given fact that Putin is responsible for killing journalists. So if that’s ludicrous, if you can explain why you think that is.

STEPHEN COHEN: Well, I got this big problem which seems to afflict very few people in public life anymore. I live by facts. I’m like my doctor, who told me not long ago I had to have minor surgery for a problem I didn’t even know I had. And I said, I’m not going to do it. Show me the facts. And he did. I had the minor surgery. Journalists no longer seem to care about facts. They repeat tabloid rumors. Putin kills everybody.

All I can tell you is this. I have never seen any evidence whatsoever, and I’ve been- I knew some of the people who were killed. Anna Politkovskaya, the famous journalist for Novaya Gazeta was the first, I think, who was- Putin was accused of killing. I knew her well. She was right here, in this apartment. Look behind me, right here. She was here with my wife, Katrina vanden Huevel. I wouldn’t say we were close friends, but we were associates in Moscow, and we were social friends. And I mourn her assassination today. But I will tell you this, that neither her editors at that newspaper, nor her family, her surviving sons, think Putin had anything to do with the killing. No evidence has ever been presented. Only media kangaroo courts that Putin was involved in these high-profile assassinations, two of the most famous being this guy Litvinenko by polonium in London, about the time Anna was killed, and more recently Boris Netsov, whom, it’s always said, was walking within view of the Kremlin when he was shot. Well, you could see the Kremlin from miles away. I don’t know what within the view- unless they think Putin was, you know, watching it through binoculars. There is no evidence that Putin ever ordered the killing of anybody outside his capacity as commander in chief. No evidence.

Now, did he? But we live, Aaron, and I hope the folks who watch us remember this. Every professional person, every decent person lives or malpractices based on verified facts. You go down the wrong way on a one-way street, you might get killed. You take some medication that’s not prescribed for you, you might die. You pursue foreign policies based on fiction, you’re likely to get in war. And all these journalists, from the New York Times to the Washington Post, from MSNBC to CNN who churn out daily these allegations that Putin kills people are disgracing themselves. I will give you one fact. Wait. One fact, and you could look it up, as Casey Stengel used to say. He was a baseball manager, in case you don’t know.

There’s an organization called the Committee to Protect American Journalists. It’s kind of iconic. It does good things, it says unwise things. Go on its website and look at the number of Russian journalists killed since 1991, since the end of the Soviet Union, under two leaders. Boris Yeltsin, whom we dearly loved and still mourn, and Putin, whom we hate. Last time I looked, the numbers may have changed, more were killed under Yeltsin than under Putin. Did Putin kill those in the 1990s?

So you should ask me, why did they die, then? And I can tell you the main reason. Corrupt business. Mafia-like business in Russia. Just like happened in the United States during our primitive accumulation days. Profit seekers killed rivals. Killed them dead in the streets. Killed them as demonstrations, as demonstrative acts. The only thing you could say about Putin is that he might have created an atmosphere that abets that sort of thing. To which I would say, maybe, but originally it was created with the oligarchical class under Boris Yeltsin, who remains for us the most beloved Russian leader in history. So that’s the long and the short of it. Go look at the listing on the Committee to Protect Journalists.

AARON MATE: OK. So, following up on that, to what extent- and this gets a bit into history, which you’ve covered extensively in your writings. To what extent are we here in the West responsible for the creation of that Russian oligarchal class that you mentioned? But also, what is Putin’s relationship to it now, today? Does he abet it? Is he entrenched in it? We hear, often, talk of Putin possibly being the richest person in the world as a result of his entanglement with the very corruption of Russia you’re speaking about. So both our role in creating that problem in Russia, but then also Putin’s role now in terms of his relationship to it.

STEPHEN COHEN: I’m going to give you a quick, truncated, scholarly, historical perspective on this. But this is what people should begin with when they think about Vladimir Putin and his 18 years in power. Putin came to power almost accidentally in 2000. He inherited a country whose state had collapsed twice in the 20th century. You’ve got to think about that. How many states have collapsed that you know of once? But the Russian state, Russian statehood, had collapsed once in 1917 during the revolution, and again in 1991 when the Soviet Union ended. The country was in ruination; 75 percent of the people were in poverty.

Putin said- and this obsesses him. If you want to know what obsesses Putin, it’s the word ‘sovereignty.’ Russia lost its sovereignty- political, foreign policy, security, financial- in the 1990s. Putin saw his mission, as I read him, and I try to read him as a biographer. He says a lot, to regain Russia’s sovereignty, which meant to make the country whole again at home, to rescue its people, and to protect its defenses. That’s been his mission. Has it been more than that? Maybe. But everything he’s done, as I see it, has followed that concept of his role in history. And he’s done pretty well.

Now, I can give you all Putin’s minuses very easily. I would not care for him to be my president. But let me tell you one other thing that’s important. You evaluate nations within their own history, not within ours. If you asked me if Putin is a democrat, and I will answer you two ways. He thinks he has. And compared to what? Compared to the leader of Egypt? Yeah, he is a democrat. Compared to the rulers of our pals in the Gulf states, he is a democrat. Compared to Bill Clinton? No, he’s not a Democrat. I mean, Russia-. Countries are on their own historical clock. And you have to judge Putin in terms of his predecessors. So people think Putin is a horrible leader. Did you prefer Brezhnev? Did you prefer Stalin? Did you prefer Andropov? Compared to what? Please tell me, compared to what.

And by the way, that’s how that’s how Russians-. You want to know why he’s so popular in Russia? Because Russians judge him in the context of their own what they call zhivaya istoriya, living history; what we call autobiography. In terms of their own lives, he looks pretty darn good. They complain out him. We sit in the kitchen and they bitch about Putin all the time. But they don’t want him to go away.

AARON MATE: All right. Well, on that front, we’re going to wrap this up there. Stephen Cohen, professor emeritus of Russian studies at New York University and Princeton. His books include “Failed Crusade: America and the Tragedy of Post-Soviet Russia,” and “Soviet Fates and Lost Alternatives: From Stalinism to the New Cold War.” Professor Cohen, thank you.

STEPHEN COHEN: You forgot one book.

AARON MATE: I did not say I was reading your, your complete bibliography.

STEPHEN COHEN: It’s called-. It’s called “Confessions of a Holy Fool.”

AARON MATE: Is that true? Or are you making a joke.

STEPHEN COHEN: Somewhere in between. [Thank you, Aaron.]

AARON MATE: Professor Cohen, thank you. And thank you for joining us on The Real News.

Published:7/30/2018 11:04:03 PM
[Entertainment] When Will Game of Thrones Return and More Updates from HBO Peter Dinklage, GOT, Game of ThronesGame of Thrones season seven is probably, most likely, hopefully, less than a year away! President of HBO Programming Casey Bloys spoke to reporters during HBO's summer TCA press tour...
Published:7/25/2018 12:27:08 PM
[Politics] Trump-Backed Brian Kemp Wins Republican Nomination in Georgia Governor’s Race

Georgia Secretary of State Brian Kemp defeated Lieutenant Gov. Casey Cagle in Tuesday's primary runoff to earn the Republican Party's nomination for governor.

The post Trump-Backed Brian Kemp Wins Republican Nomination in Georgia Governor’s Race appeared first on Washington Free Beacon.

Published:7/25/2018 12:23:25 AM
[0bd35ff0-d85f-4865-a846-a6099935293b] Trump endorsement triggers landslide victory in Georgia for GOP gubernatorial hopeful Brian Kemp Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle of Georgia, a Republican who spent most of the past 12 years building up political chits under two different GOP governors, expected to become governor himself this year. Published:7/24/2018 11:27:49 PM
[Markets] The Wall Street Journal: Trump-backed Brian Kemp wins Georgia GOP runoff for governor Republican voters chose Trump favorite Brian Kemp over Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle in the Georgia gubernatorial primary runoff Tuesday, picking a social conservative over a favorite of the GOP establishment.
Published:7/24/2018 8:28:11 PM
[Politics] Trump-Backed Candidate Kemp Wins GOP's Georgia Governor Nomination Georgia Secretary of State Brian Kemp claimed the Republican nomination for governor Tuesday after winning late endorsements from President Trump and Vice President Mike Pence.Kemp, serving his second term as secretary of State, defeated Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle in a... Published:7/24/2018 7:58:26 PM
[2018 Election] A wild one in Georgia (Paul Mirengoff) Today is the runoff election in Georgia to select the GOP nominee for governor. It’s a fascinating and hugely contentious race between Lt. Governor Casey Cagle and Secretary of State Brian Kemp. The winner will face Stacey Abrams, a state legislator who is African-American. If Abrams wins, she will become the first African-American female governor in U.S history. Cagle was considered the front-runner on the GOP side. He raised several Published:7/24/2018 11:50:11 AM
[Markets] Trump To Announce Multibillion Stimulus For Farmers

Earlier this month we reported that not everyone was happy with Trump's trade war, and as a result of plunging commodity prices, especially soy, one group emerged as especially hard hit by the administration's tariffs: farmers.

Two weeks ago, we quoted Casey Guernsey, a spokesman for Americans for Farmers and Families, who said that "China dealt its latest blow to American agriculture today with threats of even more tariffs on the horizon. Following Canada’s tariffs on U.S. products earlier this week, America’s farmers and families are staring down a dark path with no signs of relief in sight. We are counting on the administration and Congress to reach a resolution on responsible trade policies -- before we’re forced to shut down our operations for good."

Many others joined in, begging the administration for relief: John Heisdorffer, a soybean grower from Keota, Iowa, and president of the American Soybean Association, said in a statement on the website:

"Soybeans are the top agriculture export for the United States, and China is the top market for purchasing those exports, The math is simple. You tax soybean exports at 25 percent, and you have serious damage to U.S. farmers."

Cheese producers were also hard hit, forced to discount their products to keep customers, with many putting orders put on hold and resulting in the biggest cheese inventory in US history.

"We have seen large drops in our dairy product sales prices at all levels," said Catherine de Ronde, economist for the Agri-Mark Inc. dairy cooperative. "It will create a significant backup of dairy products."

Iowa Senator Joni Ernst appeared on CBS' "Face The Nation" warning that: "farmer ranchers are “always the first to be retaliated against” in these types of “trade negotiations," adding that farmers have been put in “very vulnerable position.”

Meanwhile, Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig said that "there are real issues in our trade relationship with China that need to be addressed, but Iowa agriculture cannot continue to bear the brunt of the retaliation from our trading partners."

In short, America's farmers were getting ever more angry with Trump's policies.

* * *

This morning, Trump responded and according to Politico  "the Trump administration is planning to ease fears of a trade war by announcing later Tuesday billions of dollars in aid to farmers hurt by tariffs." The Washington Post puts a number to the aid: $12 billion.

Under the White House plan, the money will be disbursed in at least three ways, coming through direct assistance, a food purchase and distribution program, and a trade promotion program.

The plan, which has been in the works for months, seeks to ensure U.S. farmers and ranchers — a key constituency for President Donald Trump and Republicans — don’t bear the brunt of an escalating trade fight with China, the European Union and other major economies.

Trump, back in April, directed Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue to devise a plan to mitigate any financial damage to U.S. agricultural producers’ bottom lines that could result from the ongoing trade battles. But the administration has so far offered few details on the amount of aid that would be provided and how it would be distributed.

And since subsidies are merely another facet of trade warfare, expect China - which has also revealed similar subsidies to its own exporters - and especially Europe, to respond in kind shortly, as the tit-fof-tat global trade war continues.

Published:7/24/2018 9:52:23 AM
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