who can give up essential
liberty to obtain a little temporary
safety, deserve neither liberty
-- Benjamin Franklin
| "All governments lie and nothing
say should be believed."
| "Power tends to corrupt, and
absolute power corrupts
absolutely. Great men
almost always bad men."
Obama Really Meant Was ...
2. Obama’s Changes to Government Surveillance
3. Obama’s NSA Speech: Review
Without Review, Reform
4. Deficient EBV-Specific B-
and T-Cell Response in Patients
with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
And this is yet another crisis file, that was written three days
speech on the NSA. There is a lot less than yesterday, namely three
instead of nine crisis files, but the first, by Chris Hedges, is quite
good (except that 4 of the 5 pages are considerably more difficult to
read, on my recent Firefox, than is the first page).
The fourth file is on the disease I have for 35+ years now, which is ME/CFS, that started in the case
of my ex and me, as is also quite common but certainly not always the
case, by an
EBV-infection. This seems a good paper, that also suggests a marker may
have been found.
The fifth file is a very brief personal bit.
Obama Really Meant Was ...
To start with, an
article by Chris Hedges on Truthdig:
This is in fact what
president Obama would have said, if he had told the
truth, or at least what Chris Hedges thinks he would have said.
Actually, I do not think Obama would or could have spoken as clearly as
Hedges writes, but here are some selections, which are quite good - and
I quote more than I otherwise would, because, at least for me, four of
the five pages are not easy to read.
It starts thus:
THE PRESIDENT: A
small, secret surveillance committee of goons and thugs hiding behind
the mask of patriotism was established in 1908 in Washington, D.C. The
group was led from 1924 until 1972 by J. Edgar Hoover, and during his
reign it became known as the Federal Bureau of Investigation. FBI
agents spied upon and infiltrated labor unions, political parties,
radical groups—especially those led by African-Americans—anti-war
groups and the civil rights movement in order to discredit anyone,
including politicians such as Henry
Wallace, who questioned the power of the state and big business.
Agents burglarized homes and offices, illegally opened mail and planted
unlawful wiretaps. Bureau leaders created blacklists. They destroyed
careers and sometimes lives. They demanded loyalty oaths. By the time
they were done, our progressive and radical movements, which had given
us the middle class and opened up our political system, were dead. And
while the FBI was targeting internal dissidents, our foreign
intelligence operatives were overthrowing regimes, bankrolling some of
the most vicious dictators on the planet and carrying out
assassinations in numerous countries, such as Cuba and the Philippines
and later Iran, Guatemala, Vietnam, Chile, Iraq and Afghanistan.
I think this is fairly
correct, but reality is nearly always more complicated than one thinks
it is. Thus, while "goons
and thugs hiding behind the mask of patriotism" probably is correct for a considerable segment of the
FBI, there also were some honest patriots involved.
Then again, this is satire. There is a lot more - 5 pages in
all, of which the remaining 4 are again without paragraphing
and printed in a small column, with a reference to "a
help-system" by "disqus.com" that is totally unhelpful - and I will
only select a few bits, that interest me for some reason, and first
World War II—which
consumed more than 50 million lives and saw 110,000 Japanese-Americans
hauled away to internment camps and atomic bombs dropped on defenseless
civilians—doubled wartime corporate profits from the First World War.
My point here is that in
Holland alone, between 1941 and 1945, more than 116,000 Dutch Jews were
murdered (not "merely" locked up); they were manipulated into
their deaths by the (great-)grandfathers of the sick and degenerate
narko-nazis who refused to protect me nearly four years
against their illegal drugsdealers, while in Holland after the war not
one prominent Nazi-collaborator ever had to face a court - and
nearly all judges had turned Nazi, under the Nazis, and then turned
back to Dutchmen, when the Nazis lost the war, because they were helped
by the Nazi-collaborator and judge of the
Dutch Nazi-collaborating Supreme Court Donner, who is the
grandfather of the former Minister of Justice Donner, who protected
the yearly billions
of dollars of deals just in soft drugs in Holland.
As the Dutch very proudly say: "In which a small country can show
Next, there is - and I am skipping - this:
evolution [of secret surveillance capabilities - MM], Americans were
steadily shorn of their most basic constitutional rights and their
traditions of limited government. U.S. intelligence agencies were
always anchored in a system of secrecy—with little effective oversight
from either elected leaders or ordinary citizens.
Yes. President Obama is
also, like many journalists, proud to say that this is as it should be,
but he is lying: A secret service that is not carefully and regularly
checked and controlled by persons who have nothing to do with it's
practices and nothing to gain from it (such as Senators) is a sick
secret service, and is so also if all secret servicemen want to do
their jobs without any control.
Here is Senator
Church, quoted from the Wikipedia article on him, that introduces
his words as follows - and all of the rest but the first brief
paragraph is Church's text:
on August 17, 1975 Senator Frank Church stated on NBC's "Meet the
Press" without mentioning the name of the NSA about this agency:
In the need to
develop a capacity to know what potential enemies are doing, the United
States government has perfected a technological capability that enables
us to monitor the messages that go through the air. Now, that is
necessary and important to the United States as we look abroad at
enemies or potential enemies. We must know, at the same time, that
capability at any time could be turned around on the American people,
and no American would have any privacy left such is the capability to
monitor everything—telephone conversations, telegrams, it doesn't
matter. There would be no place to hide.
And that was in 1975!
Clearly, the US under Obama has crossed that abyss, proudly
also, and with little opposition from the civilian population.
If this government ever
became a tyrant, if a dictator ever took charge in this country, the
technological capacity that the intelligence community has given the
government could enable it to impose total tyranny, and there would be
no way to fight back because the most careful effort to combine
together in resistance to the government, no matter how privately it
was done, is within the reach of the government to know. Such is the
capability of this technology.
I don’t want to see this
country ever go across the bridge. I know the capacity that is there to
make tyranny total in America, and we must see to it that this agency
and all agencies that possess this technology operate within the law
and under proper supervision so that we never cross over that abyss.
That is the abyss from which there is no return.
Next, there is this, which I think is quite correct:
To obtain your
personal information, the FBI can now freely issue “national
security letters” to your bank, doctor, employer or public library
or any of your associates without a judicial warrant. And you will
never be notified of an investigation. We can collect and store in
perpetuity all metadata
of your email correspondence and phone records and track your
geographical movements. We can assassinate you if I decide you are a
terrorist. We can order the military under Section 1021 of the National
Defense Authorization Act to arrest you, strip you of due process and
hold you indefinitely in military detention centers. We can continue to
throw into prison those who expose the illegality of what we are doing,
or force them into exile, as all totalitarian secret police forces from
the SS to the KGB to the East German Stasi have done. And we can
And there is this, also
competitors of American companies, we spy on corporations in Brazil,
including Brazil’s biggest oil company, Petrobras, and on corporations
in Germany and France. We also steal information from the leaders of
many countries, including German Chancellor Angela Merkel, whose
personal cellphone we tapped. (...) We spied successfully on U.N.
Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, in addition to Pope Francis and the
conclave that elected him last March. Senior U.N. officials and Roman
Catholic cardinals are highly susceptible to recruitment by al-Qaida.
The reasons are classified. I won’t share them with you. Believe me.
And there is this on the
"Review Group" (most of the recommendations of which were not followed):
Over the last six
months, I created an outside Review Group on Intelligence and
Communications Technologies to make recommendations for reform. This
group is led by the same intelligence chiefs who carry out the abuses.
As to the trust Obama
Given the unique
power of the state, it is not enough for leaders to say “trust us, we
won’t abuse the data we collect.” History has too many examples of such
trust being breached. Our system of government is built on the premise
that our liberty cannot depend on the good intentions of those in
power; it depends on the law to constrain those in power. And that is
why Congress and our courts have rewritten our laws, from the NDAA to
Amendment Act, to strip you of legal protection.
As to the type of
persons Bill and Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama are, there is this:
As president I
understand, as do Bill and Hillary, that political power is about us,
not about you. I know where power in this country lies. It does not lie
with the citizen. It lies with Wall Street and corporate boardrooms.
And since my vanity demands that I be famous, wealthy and powerful, I
work hard for these centers of power. None of these centers of power
want to see any curbs on the security and surveillance state. And so I
will make sure there are none.
Which is to say: Obama
lied, lied, lied, lied, lied and lied. And yes, he clearly did,
very intentionally also.
As a presidential candidate
in 2008 I promised to “reject the use of national security letters to
spy on citizens who are not suspected of a crime.” I promised to close
our detention center in Guantanamo Bay. I said I would revisit the
Patriot Act. I told you I would overturn unconstitutional executive
decisions issued by the Bush administration. I said I would shut down
sites. And I promised an end to
extraordinary rendition. I told you as president last summer that
the NSA “cannot target your emails” and that all of our surveillance
programs were subject to the full control of Congress.
Next, there is this on the need for the bulk collection of phone
This brings me to
the program that has generated the most controversy these past few
months—the bulk collection of telephone records under Section
215. Why is this necessary? It is necessary because in a
totalitarian state the secret police must gather information not to
solve crimes but, as Hannah Arendt
pointed out, “to be on hand when the government decides to arrest a
certain category of the population.” We need all of your emails, phone
conversations, Web searches and geographical movements for “evidence”
should we decide to seize you.
Yes, and that always
was the point and is the point.
Anyway - there is a lot more, and it is over five pages, but as
I said, all but the first page are printed in small columns, without
paragraphing and in small letters, all as if it should
rather not be read - which also is my reason to quote more than I would
have done otherwise.
But I do not know how this is for others - I am on Linux with
the latest Firefox, and everything else works.
2. Obama’s Changes to Government
Next, an article by Josh Keller, Alicia Parlapiano, David
E. Sanger and Charlie Savage in the New York Times:
This you can check
out yourself, but here is my summary:
Obama did not
address most key issues, while all the decisions he has taken
are, no doubt intentionally, extremely ambiguous.
That is, the whole speech was pure propaganda,
and any reforms were at best (!) cosmetic and ambiguous.
3. Obama’s NSA Speech: Review Without
Review, Reform Without
Next, an article by Hugh on
This starts as follows:
Obama’s speech on
intelligence gathering was the full-on horsesh*t performance many of us
thought it would be.
Obama began with a
revisionist, some might say tortured, reworking of American history
which placed the NSA in the tradition of Paul Revere and the Sons of
Liberty. I guess what they say is true, that patriotism is the last
refuge of scoundrels and Obama’s wrapping the NSA’s war on the
Constitution up in the flag certainly qualifies.
It is a good article, but I
will quote only two further bits from it. First, there is this on US
presidents, which is in fact a quotation from an interview that Bill
Moyers had in 2008 with Andrew Bacevich:
BILL MOYERS: Do you
expect either John McCain or Barack Obama to rein in the “imperial
ANDREW BACEVICH: No. I
mean, people run for the presidency in order to become imperial
presidents. The people who are advising these candidates, the people
who aspire to be the next national security advisor, the next secretary
of defense, these are people who yearn to exercise those kind of great
I think that is quite right.
And this is the last but one paragraph:
This was one of Obama’s
longer speeches. I think its length indicates the importance that he
attaches to surveillance. The lack of real, specific content, and the
failure to acknowledge Edward Snowden and the serious institutional
problems he raised demonstrate that this is not about reform but damage
control. Finally, the question not raised or addressed at all is why
our political classes feel the need to spend hundreds of billions of
dollars on a surveillance/police state aimed at everyone everywhere,
including all Americans’ electronic communications, yet ostensibly
directed against foreign terrorists, even though it has never caught
one. Is it as simple as the totalitarian belief that information is
power and total information equates to total power?
Yes indeed: It is all very
totalitarian, and while total
information does not equate to total power, it certainly is a
necessary precondition for those who want total power, and who now also
have it, in principle, with special thanks to president Obama (and his
EBV-Specific B- and T-Cell Response in Patients with Chronic Fatigue
Next, to a quite different
subject, namely that of having ME/CFS (I
still do not like the "CFS" bit, but I attach it for the benefit of
search machines) that started with EBV, which is the case of myself and
I found this on Niceguidelines:
All there is on Niceguidelines
is an abstract, which I reproduce because it interests me,
though it probably interests few others, and the boldings are mine:
But there also is a link to the
whole paper, that I meanwhile downloaded and read
once, more or less diagonally:
Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) has long been
discussed as a possible cause or trigger of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
(CFS). In a subset of patients the disease starts with infectious
mononucleosis and both enhanced and diminished EBV-specific antibody
titers have been reported. In this study, we comprehensively
analyzed the EBV-specific memory B- and T-cell response in patients
with CFS. While we observed no difference in viral capsid antigen
(VCA)-IgG antibodies, EBV nuclear antigen (EBNA)-IgG titers were low or
absent in 10% of CFS patients. Remarkably, when analyzing the
EBV-specific memory B-cell reservoir in vitro a
diminished or absent number of EBNA-1- and VCA-antibody secreting cells
was found in up to 76% of patients. Moreover, the ex vivo EBV-induced
secretion of TNF-α and IFN-γ was significantly lower in patients.
Multicolor flow cytometry revealed that the frequencies of
EBNA-1-specific triple TNF-α/IFN-γ/IL-2 producing CD4+ and
subsets were significantly diminished whereas no difference could be
detected for HCMV-specific T-cell responses. When comparing EBV load in
blood immune cells, we found more frequently EBER-DNA but not BZLF-1
RNA in CFS patients compared to healthy controls suggesting more
frequent latent replication. Taken together, our findings give
evidence for a deficient EBV-specific B- and T-cell memory response in
CFS patients and suggest an impaired ability to control early steps of
EBV reactivation. In addition the diminished EBV response might be suitable
to develop diagnostic marker in CFS.
The reason I read it "more or less diagonally" is simply that it is heavy going, which is not
I do think this is quite interesting, and probably will return
to it later: It would be very nice if at least a diagnostic
marker could be established, and the sooner the better.
In fact, this Nederlog is
uploaded fairly early and was written while I was very tired,
because I slept very little last night, without knowing why. But this
will probably be better tomorrow, for I have slept fairly decently
since September last.
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
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.
note the whole file I
quote from is quite pertinent.)
(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: