13, 2014
Crisis: Clapper * 2, Fusion, Internet, Snowden, New Normal
   "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

1. Clapper Reads From the Bush/Cheney/Nixon Playbook to
     Fear-Monger Over Transparency

2. Sustainable nuclear fusion breakthrough raises hopes for
     ultimate green energy

3. DNI Clapper Admits CIA's Not-Really-Secret Secret Drone

4. Internet governance too US-centric, says European

5. Edward Snowden asylum demand dropped by European

6. The New Normal in the Workplace 
About ME/CFS


This is the crisis issue for February 13, 2014. There is also an earlier new index file for the crisis series that I made today.

I do not think any of what follows is urgent or very important, but it is about the crisis, except perhaps item 2, that marks a small step forward in obtaining energy from fusion (that was already a project in the 1960ies). It is here because if energy can be produced from fusion, very many things will change in major ways.

1. Clapper Reads From the Bush/Cheney/Nixon Playbook to Fear-Monger Over Transparency

To start with, an article by Glenn Greenwald, that I found on Common Dreams but originated at The Intercept:
This starts as follows:
James Clapper, President Obama’s top national security official, is probably best known for having been caught lying outright to Congress about NSA activities, behavior which (as some baseball players found outhappens to be a felony under federal law. But – like torturers and Wall Street tycoons before him – Clapper has been not only shielded from prosecution, and not only allowed to keep his job; he has has now been anointed the arbiter of others’ criminality, as he parades around the country calling American journalists “accomplices”. Yesterday, as Wired’s Dave Kravets reports, the “clearly frustrated” Clapper went before a Senate committee (different than the one he got caught lying to) to announce that the Snowden disclosures are helping the terrorists:

We’re beginning to see changes in the communications behavior of adversaries: particularly terrorists. A disturbing trend, which I anticipate will continue . . . Terrorists and other adversaries of this country are going to school on U.S. intelligence sources, methods, and tradecraft. And the insights they’re gaining are making our job in the intelligence community much, much harder. And this includes putting the lives of members or assets of the intelligence community at risk, as well as those of our armed forces, diplomats, and our citizens.

Here Clapper, who is the leading US state terrorist, is evidently applying Goering's Principle:

I note two things about Clapper's statement, apart from the point that he is evidently applying Goering's Principle, that also works in the US:

1. Clapper offers no evidence of any kind: "You_Should_Trust_Him!TM".
2. What he is saying sounds quite crazy, if you know anything about computers.

The first point is clear. The second is obvious from what is revealed: There is nothing supposed "terrorists" can learn from what has been revealed about the lies the NSA perpetrates, except what they knew for a very long time: using the internet or using cell-phones is dangerous.

Anyway - Glenn Greenwald also explains Clapper had no evidence of any kind, and goes on to connect his sayings with earlier claims by Cheney, Bush and others, including Machiavelli and Hobbes (but missing Goering), which I leave to you.

2. Sustainable nuclear fusion breakthrough raises hopes for ultimate green energy

Next, an article by Ian Sample in the Guardian, which is here because if physicists were successful in getting energy from fusion, this would be a very major breakthrough, that would change a great number of things:  This starts as follows:

US researchers have achieved a world first in an ambitious experiment that aims to recreate the conditions at the heart of the sun and pave the way for nuclear fusion reactors.

The scientists generated more energy from fusion reactions than they put into the nuclear fuel, in a small but crucial step along the road to harnessing fusion power. The ultimate goal – to produce more energy than the whole experiment consumes – remains a long way off, but the feat has nonetheless raised hopes that after decades of setbacks, firm progress is finally being made.

So it is far from completed. Even so, getting energy from fusion, in the sense that (considerably) more energy is produced than is spend, is one of the few things that give great promise to mankind's further development. But sofar it is not there.

For more, you can consult the article.

3. DNI Clapper Admits CIA's Not-Really-Secret Secret Drone Program

Next, an article by Andrea Germanos on Common Dreams, with another bit about Clapper:
This starts as follows:
Director of National Intelligence James Clapper has publicly acknowledged the supposedly covert CIA drone program.

While media outlets and some government officials have publicly admitted the program, the CIA has denied a Freedom of Information Act request made by the ACLU about details of its targeting killing program.

But Clapper indirectly acknowledged the CIA program at a Senate Armed Services Committee hearing on Tuesday during an exchange with Sen. Bill Nelson (D-Fla.), as the Wall Street Journal first reported.

Nelson, who thinks the drone program has been "exceptionally precise" and refuses to believe reports that the strikes have left a high number of civilian casualties, asked Clapper if it was true that the administration was considering shifting the use of drones from the CIA to the Department of Defense.

"Yes, sir, it is. And again, that would also be best left to a closed session," Clapper responded.

Why this bureaucratic measure would "be best left to a closed session" is a complete riddle for me, if the US is a democracy.

Anyway, there is a video and a nice quote in the rest of the article.

4. Internet governance too US-centric, says European commission

Next, an article by Ian Traynor in the Guardian:
This starts as follows:
The mass surveillance carried out by the US National Security Agency means that governance of the internet has to be made more international and less dominated by America, the European Union's executive has declared.
To which I say: Yes... but how? And apart from that: As long as the US government allows that the cables that transport the internet are getting plugged by the NSA, one can change whatever one wants, but the spying will go on.

That is, there are number of things that the European Union declared that sound more or less nice, but without any clues on how they want to implement this, it doesn't amount to much.

You can read the nice but rather empty sounding statements yourself by consulting the last dotted link.

5. Edward Snowden asylum demand dropped by European parliament

Next, an article by Ian Traynor (again) in the Guardian (again):
This starts as follows:

The European parliament is to ditch demands on Wednesday that EU governments give guarantees of asylum and security to Edward Snowden, the National Security Agency whistleblower.

The parliament's civil liberties committee is to vote on more than 500 amendments to the first ever parliamentary inquiry into the NSA and GCHQ scandal, a 60-page report that is damning about the scale and the impact of mass surveillance.

But there is no consensus on an amendment proposed by the Greens calling on EU governments to assure Snowden of his safety in the event that he emerges from hiding in Russia and comes to Europe.

Amid what key MEPs have described as intense pressure from national governments on parliament – from the Conservatives and their allies, from the mainstream centre-right and from social democrats – the asylum call has no chance of passing.

Well... I am not amazed. Personally, I do not expect anything good from the European Parliament. I may be a bit cynical, but I never found any reason to do so, and this is another reason not to expect anything good.

There is considerably more in the article, but nothing that will help Snowden.

6. The New Normal in the Workplace

Finally, an article by an unknown on Common Dreams:

Mostly, this is a short piece to plug an interview of nearly 17 minutes that I also link below, but here is a quotation from it:
"We’ve recovered," we hear. "We’ve taken your full-time job away and given you a part-time job, and we’ve given the difference to our stockholders," author and social justice activist Barbara Garson, tells GRITtv this week.
Who the "We" are that have recovered should be told to the "we" who hear this: Those "We"s are the top of the rich, at the cost of the rest - and the New Normal in the workplace is that one has a part time job, with less money, and with less security

I saw the whole interview, and Barbara Garson does tell a credible but sad story.
Then again, if people take this in great majority, without protesting, who will stop the small minority of politicians and bank managers etc. who does this to them?

[1] Here it is necessary to insist, with Aristotle, that 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 one of the citizens: upon the same principle, if it is advantageous to place the supreme power in some particular persons, they should be appointed to be only guardians, and the servants of the laws.
(And I note the whole file I quote from is quite pertinent.)

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 Komaroff

Ten discoveries about the biology of CFS(pdf)

3. Hillary Johnson

The Why  (currently not available)

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)

       home - index - summaries - mail