January 12, 2014

Crisis+me+ME: NSA, Reich, Lessig, being alone, dieticians pseudoscientists, FBI, Obama

   "They who can give up essential 
   liberty to obtain a little temporary
   safety, deserve neither liberty
   nor safety."
   -- Benjamin Franklin [1]
   "All governments lie and nothing
   they say should be believed.
   -- I.F. Stone.
   "Power tends to corrupt, and   
   absolute power corrupts
   absolutely. Great men are        
   almost always bad men."
   -- Lord Acton

Prev- crisis -Next  

NSA Makes Final Push to Retain Surveillance Powers
2. Today’s Lousy Jobs Report and the Scourge of Inequality
3. 'New Hampshire Rebellion' Kicks Off Fight Against Money
     in Politics

4. Why do we have such a problem with being alone?
5. Everyone’s Getting Fatter, So Why Do We Still Believe
     Anything We’ve Been Told About Diets?

6. Think The FBI Is About 'Law Enforcement'? Guess Again
7. Fox News Was Right For Once, And It's About Obama

About ME/CFS


This is and is not another crisis file. It is, because the first three items are about the crisis, and so are perhaps the last two, which are videos, but the middle two mostly reflect my own problems, that arise and exist in large measure because I am sick for the 36th year, and spend this year the 30th year in the dole, without it ever having been admitted by any Dutch bureaucrat or any Dutch politician that I am really sick, even though I got one of the best M.A.-degrees ever awarded in psychology (mostly on logic and mathematics and programming) and could and would have fled the sick country in which I am forced to live in at least 34 years ago if only I had been healthy.

But this was just the introduction, to show that I am unrepentant. [2] The rest is less angry, and indeed also is not about myself. Also, I liked yesterday' "On "All in the Family"", as did my readers, it seems, and there may not be a crisis file tomorrow, but instead one that is about something else again.

1.  NSA Makes Final Push to Retain Surveillance Powers

To start with, an article by Alexander Reed Kelly on Truthdig:
This starts as follows:

Just before President Obama announces the future of domestic surveillance, the spying agency and its allies concede a need for greater transparency but maintain that limiting the scope of their work would put the country at greater risk of terrorist attacks.

The Guardian reports:

In a lengthy interview that aired on Friday on National Public Radio (NPR), the NSA’s top civilian official, the outgoing deputy director John C Inglis, said that the agency would cautiously welcome a public advocate to argue for privacy interests before the secret court which oversees surveillance. Such a measure is being promoted by some of the agency’s strongest legislative critics.

Inglis also suggested that the so-called Fisa court have “somebody who would assist them with matters of interpreting technology”, which also has the potential to recast the court’s relationship with the NSA.

Currently, the judges on the panel rely entirely on the NSA to explain how the agency’s complex technological systems work, an institutional disadvantage that judges have highlighted in secret rulings bemoaning “systemic” misrepresentations by the powerful surveillance agency. 

Inglis conceded in his NPR interview that the NSA’s bulk collection program may have foiled just one terrorist attack at most. Nonetheless, he called the strategy an “insurance program” that is “a necessary component to cover a seam [against terrorism] that I can’t otherwise cover.”

All I have to say at this point - after tracking the NSA for 7 months now - is that Mr Inglis is a true pupil of Goering:

2.  Today’s Lousy Jobs Report and the Scourge of Inequality

Next, a piece by Robert Reich from his site:

This starts as follows, and one reason to include this is to counter the voices in the "press" (I use quotation-marks around "press", "media" and "journalists" to indicate that I cannot take them serious) that insist that "the crisis is over":

The U.S. economy created a measly 74,000 new jobs in December, and a smaller percentage of working-age Americans is now employed than at any time in the last three decades (before women surged into the workforce).

What does this have to do with the fact that median household incomes continue to drop (adjusted for inflation) and that 95 percent of all the economic gains since the recovery started have gone to the top 1 percent? 

Plenty. Businesses won’t create new jobs without enough customers. But most Americans no longer have enough purchasing power to fuel that job growth. 

That’s why it’s so important to (1) raise the minimum wage at least to its inflation-adjusted value 40 years ago — which would be well over $10 an hour, (2) extend unemployment benefits to the jobless, (3) launch a major jobs program to rebuild the nation’s crumbling infrastructure, (4) expand Medicaid to the near-poor, (5) enable low-wage workers to unionize, (6) rehire all the teachers, social workers, police, and other public service employees who were laid off in the recession, (7) exempt the first $20,000 of income from Social Security payroll taxes and make up the difference by removing the cap on income subject to the tax.

Also, I agree with each of the points - which is not to say I expect them to be heeded. There are more points in the text, which I also agree with, but that I leave to you.

3.  'New Hampshire Rebellion' Kicks Off Fight Against Money in Politics 

Next, an article by Jacob Chamberlain on Common Dreams:
This starts as follows - and here is some information on Lawrence Lessig:
Staging what they have dubbed "the New Hampshire Rebellion," a group lead by Harvard intellectual and activist Lawrence Lessig set out for a 185 mile journey across the "live free or die" state on Saturday, calling attention to what they see as one of the most important issues in U.S. politics today—the dire need for campaign finance reform.
Otherwise, the best I can do is to provide a video link:

This is quite good and quite clear: It is about corruption.

4. Why do we have such a problem with being alone?

Next, on another theme, that I also wanted to write about as "Twenty years living alone", here is a link to an article by Sara Maitland in the Guardian:
This starts as follows:
I live alone. I have lived alone for more than 20 years now. I do not just mean that I am single – I live in what might seem to many people to be "isolation" rather than simply "solitude". My home is in a region of Scotland with one of the lowest population densities in Europe, and I live in one of the emptiest parts of it: the average population density of the UK is 674 people per sq mile (246 per sq km). In my valley, we have (on average) more than three sq miles each. The nearest shop is 10 miles away, and the nearest supermarket more than 20. There is no mobile-phone connection and very little through-traffic uses the single-track road that runs a quarter of a mile below my house. On occasion, I do not see another person all day. I love it.

But there is a problem, a serious cultural problem, about solitude. Being alone in our present society raises an important question about identity and wellbeing. In the first place, and rather urgently, the question needs to be asked. And then – possibly, tentatively, over a longer period of time – we need to try to answer it.
Actually, I found this a surprisingly good article, that is also quite long. In fact, I will save this, and return to it another time, when I take up my "Twenty years living alone", which is indeed what I have done and am doing in Amsterdam, in part out of choice, since I do not think the conversation of most to be interesting, and for the most part forced by my illness: As long as I get no help, I've no real choice (and such help as there is this day, I probably want to avoid completely anyway).

But this article does pose some fundamental questions, and answers them quite well, and will help me when I write about
my "Twenty years living alone",

Everyone’s Getting Fatter, So Why Do We Still Believe Anything We’ve Been Told About Diets?

an article by Natasha Hakimi on Truthdig, that strongly relates to the corruptions of medicine:
This starts as follows:
Obesity has “more than doubled” and diabetes quadrupled in the U.S. since the government issued advice as to what a “healthy diet” contains. So why on earth are we still taking in the faulty science? And where did these deadly misconceptions come from?
These are good questions, in which I am more interested than most because of my ill health. The article has some answers, that I leave to you, and ends as follows:
(...) all this focus on what we’ve been told to eat has left us without any answers as to what we should actually consume. In other words, all the information anyone can offer about nutrition is supposition. What is clear, however, is that the theory America’s been subscribing to for the last few decades is wrong. Accepting this is at the very least a step in the direction of a healthier future.
Yes, indeed - and in fact I have always thought this, although I have no clear ideas about what is a healthy diet, and also much doubt there is one that holds for everyone or indeed for most.

6. Think The FBI Is About 'Law Enforcement'? Guess Again

Next, a video by The Young Turks (TYT), which is about a recent major change in the FBI:

The major change is the change from the old "The primary function of the FBI is law enforcement" to the new "The primary function of the FBI is national security".

Yes, indeed! Anyway, the comments by TYT are quite good.
7. Fox News Was Right For Once, And It's About Obama

Finally for today, another video by TYT:
This may be less important, but I like it that it is clearly said that "Obama is the establishment, and basically did everything the Republicans wanted him to do". And yes, this is argued, mainly by reference to his doing nothing against income inequality, and quite a lot to extend this.


[1] Here it is necessary to insist, with Aristotle, thay the governors do not rule, or at least, should not rule: The laws rule, and the government, if good, is part of its executive power. Here I quote Aristotle from my More on stupidity, the rule of law, and Glenn Greenwald:
It is more proper that law should govern than any of the citizens: upon the same principle, if it is advantageous to place supreme power in some particular persons, they should be appointed to be only guardians, and the servant of laws.
(And I note the whole file I quote from is quite pertinent.)

[2] Actually, I removed the part between the dotted lines from the introduction to a footnote - and explain at the end why:

Here is, to start with, a little angry disquisition on my position in Holland - that you may skip if you have read them before:

Instead, the Dutch
bureaucrats or any Dutch politicians chronically, and for decades, have refused to answer my letters, phone calls, or e-mails, as if I am a criminal instead of them, and also allowed the more beastly bureaucratic sick sadists to grossly offend me and my family many times, again always without taking any action against their sick fascistic terrorist colleagues who insisted that I am "a fascist terrorist" because I asked some questions (and then was thrown out of the University of Amsterdam, briefly before taking my MA in philosophy); that my father was "an insane little strike-leader", because he spend 3 years, 9 months and 15 days as a concentration camp prisoner, convicted by collaborating Dutch judges (as was his father, who did not survive); that my mother is a "sick and dirty cunt-whore" for being my mother; while I am "a dirty queer" because I wear my hair a little long, and protested against obvious sadistic racism.

Also, I was told, repeatedly, by the sick, sadistic lawyers the City of Amsterdam employs to protect the drugsmafia, that I had "no case" against the sadistic, fascistic terroristic sub-humans who were allowed to play endless racist, discriminarory, and very sadistic games as doormen of the dole with colored and arabic people, "because I had called them 'bureau-fascists'" after they had offended me and my mother, because I protested their sadistic games; and that I had "nothing to complain about", when I protested against being styled a queer, "because you are not a homosexual".

Anyway... Holland is a very sick and degenerate country, I learned over the course of 36 years, that is sick and degenerate mostly because it is being ruled by an ever very small group of sick degenerates, who have now for more than 25 years been protecting the drugsmafia, simply because these folks know how to manage the sale fo 25 billion euros in soft drugs alone, each year, for 25 years now since I protested, which I did mainly because the Amsterdam mayor Van Thijn allowed his illegal drugsdealers to deal their illegal drugs, with his personal signed permission, from the house where I lived. And the 25 billion euros that each year are turned over in illegal soft drugs alone in Holland was established by the probably only honest Dutch parliamentarian, Van Traa, since whose death in 1996, that may have been murder, hardly anyone in Holland talks about illegal drugs, the enormous amounts of illegal money earned with drugs, or the percentages the Dutch politicians get.

Instead, all the Dutch papers and all the Dutch "journalists" pretend "nothing" is the matter, "no" Dutch politician can be blamed for anything, while they also  usually manage to either suppress or misstate the amounts of drugs sold. In fact, a small percentage of 25 billion of illegal soft drugs that are turmed over each year must be more than sufficient to make all the twohunded or so leading men and women who rule Holland to be mega-rich.

But no, that can't be - the Dutch papers and their "journalists" want their readers to believe euros in soft drugs alone can be dealt in Holland each year, and no Dutch politician could possibly profit from it, not even if they are the grandsons or great-grandsons of the most fascistic Nazi-collaborators, who helped kill over 100.000 Dutch Jews, as two or three of them are.

O no! It is grossly offensive to even think such people, with such a background,  could do anything wrong - if you are an ordinary Dutchman or an ordinary Dutch "journalist", who all think so, and quite regularly say so.

Anyway... as the perceptive reader has seen I remain very offended by all the intentional sick and sadistic behavior I have experienced in Amsterdam, and as my situation still is improving from the major collapse I suffered in May/June 2012, there will be more about this, in English I suppose, because the Duch are in great majority descending from the apes who see no evil, hear no evil and speak no evil. I have been made the subject of decades of evil, only because I wrote and spoke the truth in Holland about Holland.

The reason to remove the above to a footnote is that I am aware that the ordinary folks believe "that one should not complain". All I say at this point is that (1) I would not have complained against the Amsterdam mayors, aldermen and police, nor the University of Amsterdam, if I had been much more stupid and ordinary and (2) I have been discriminated for 35 years mostly because I am not an ordinary man.

But OK... the above has happened, and if you think that is the way to run a civilized country you are welcome to your opinion, as long as I am welcome to mine.

About ME/CFS (that I prefer to call M.E.: The "/CFS" is added to facilitate search machines) which is a disease I have since 1.1.1979:
1. Anthony Komarof

Ten discoveries about the biology of CFS(pdf)

3. Hillary Johnson

The Why  (currently not available)[2]

4. Consensus (many M.D.s) Canadian Consensus Government Report on ME (pdf - version 2003)
5. Consensus (many M.D.s) Canadian Consensus Government Report on ME (pdf - version 2011)
6. Eleanor Stein

Clinical Guidelines for Psychiatrists (pdf)

7. William Clifford The Ethics of Belief
8. Malcolm Hooper Magical Medicine (pdf)
Maarten Maartensz
Resources about ME/CFS
(more resources, by many)

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