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."
1. On the UK’s Equating of
Journalism with Terrorism
2. Documenting Darkness: How a Thug State
3. Operation Nazification
4. Obama Can't Get Dems To
Back Horrible Trade Deal
5. Writing The Snowden Files:
'The paragraph began to
This is yet another mostly
crisis file. It is not optimistic, but then the crisis files rarely
are, and the present one does contain some quite pessimistic details,
including the reasons why. I was especially impressed by item
2, which I recommend you read all of (on Common Dreams or
TomDispatch). It is also quite convincing, I think, although it will
not make you happier.
The last item is a full listing of the directories of my site that I
have so far uploaded this year, which comes to more than half of the
site. The problem is that the rest, especially the philosophy section,
is a bit more difficult. But it will be done, and quite soon also, at
least if I keep feeling as I've done the last week.
1. On the UK’s
Equating of Journalism with Terrorism
The first article is
by Glenn Greenwald. I've used the version on Common Dreams, but it is
also on The Intercept:
This starts as follows:
As my colleague Ryan
Deveraux reports, a lower U.K. court this morning, as long
expected, upheld the legality of the nine-hour detention of my partner,
David Miranda, at Heathrow Airport last August, even as it acknowledged
that the detention was “an indirect interference with press freedom”.
For good measure, the court also refused permission to appeal (though
permission can still be granted by the appellate court). David was
detained and interrogated under the Terrorism Act of 2000.
Yes, indeed - and it is,
it seems to me, quite shockingly insane, on the part of the British
government and the British courts. To be precize, what is quite
shockingly insane is the equation of journalists, who write something
the government or the court do not like, with terrorists, who blow up
The UK Government expressly
argued that the release of the Snowden documents (which the free
is actually tantamount to “terrorism”, the same theory now being
used by the Egyptian military regime to prosecute Al Jazeera
journalists as terrorists. Congratulations to the UK government on the
illustrious company it is once again keeping. British officials
have also repeatedly
threatened criminal prosecution of everyone involved in this
reporting, including Guardian journalists and editors.
There is a rather a lot more there, which you best read yourself, and
it gets summed up thus:
In sum, the U.K.
Government wants to stop disclosure of its mass surveillance activities
not because it fears terrorism or harm to national security but because
it fears public debate, legal challenges and accountability. That is
why the U.K. government considers this journalism to be “terrorism”:
because it undermines the interests and power of British political
officials, not the safety of the citizenry.
Yes, quite so.
Darkness: How a Thug State Operates
article is by Tom
Engelhardt. Again I've used the version on Common Dreams, but it is
also (at least) on TomDispatch.com:
The thug state is the
nice liar Obama's present United States - and incidentally, a "thug"
Wikipedia explains is "a
who treats others violently and roughly, often for hire" (and I insert this, because I had the
older meaning in my head, that is more specific).
Here is a part from the beginning, after having said that the NSA
claims Snowden took 1.7 million documents:
Whatever he had
with him on those thumb drives when he left the agency, Edward
Snowden did not take all the NSA’s classified documents. Not by a
long shot. He only downloaded a portion of them. We don’t
have any idea what percentage, but assumedly millions of NSA secret
documents did not get the Snowden treatment.
Next, Tom Engelhardt
remarks, quite rightly:
Keep this in mind,
however: the NSA is only one of 17 intelligence outfits in what is
called the U.S. Intelligence Community. Some of the
others are as large and well funded, and all of them generate their own
troves of secret documents, undoubtedly stretching into the many
And these are just the
intelligence agencies. There are many more mostly secret governmental
agencies (all funded by tax money) and in fact:
We do know that,
in 2011, the whole government reportedly classified 92,064,862 documents. If accurate and reasonably
typical, that means, in the twenty-first century, the NSS has already
generated hundreds of millions of documents that could not be read by
an American without a security clearance.
Here "NSS" abbreviates
"National Security State". Then there is this:
After all, it’s
clear from the numbers alone that the urge to envelop the national
security state in a blanket of secrecy, to shield its workings from the
eyes of its citizens (as well as allies and enemies) has proven
essentially boundless, as have the secret ambitions of those running
that state. There is no way, at present, to limit the
governmental urge for secrecy even in minimal ways, certainly not via
secret courts or congressional committees implicated and entangled in
the processes of a secret system.
Yes, I agree: We do hardly
know a very small part of the hundreds of millions of secret
documents and secret court orders that the secret and
other bureaucratic governmental services of the U.S. have produced in
the thirteen plus years of this century.
One thing is for certain,
though no one thinks to say it: despite their staggering releases of
insider information, when it comes to the true nature and extent of the
NSS, we surely remain in the dark. In the feeling that, thanks to
Manning and Snowden, we now grasp the depths of that secret state, its
secret acts, and the secret documentation that goes with it, we are
In a sense, valuable as they
have been, Snowden’s revelations have helped promote this delusion.
There is a lot more in the article, which I strongly recommend you read
yourself - and note that I have only quoted a small part.
Next, an article by
David Swanson on Washington's Blog:
This starts as
Yes, indeed. Actually,
the piece is here mostly as background, and because I just
realized Franklin Delano Roosevelt didn't get older than I am at
present, and that Harry Truman became president because he was
Roosevelt's vice-president, and he was certainly not fit for
Annie Jacobsen’s new book
is called Operation Paperclip: The Secret Intelligence Program
That Brought Nazi Scientists to America. It isn’t terribly
secret anymore, of course, and it was never very intelligent.
Jacobsen has added some details, and the U.S. government is still
hiding many more. But the basic facts have been available;
they’re just left out of most U.S. history books, movies, and
After World War II, the U.S.
military hired sixteen hundred former Nazi scientists and doctors,
including some of Adolf Hitler’s closest collaborators, including men
responsible for murder, slavery, and human experimentation, including
men convicted of war crimes, men acquitted of war crimes, and men who
never stood trial.
In 1947 Operation
Paperclip, still rather small, was in danger of being terminated.
Instead, Truman transformed the U.S. military with the National
Security Act, and created the best ally that Operation Paperclip could
want: the CIA. Now the program took off, intentionally and willfully,
with the full knowledge and understanding of the same U.S. President
who had declared as a senator that if the Russians were winning the
U.S. should help the Germans, and vice versa, to ensure that the most
people possible died, the same president who viciously and pointlessly
dropped two nuclear bombs on Japanese cities, the same president who
brought us the war on Korea, the war without declaration, the secret
wars, the permanent expanded empire of bases, the military secrecy in
all matters, the imperial presidency, and the military-industrial
complex. The U.S. Chemical Warfare Service took up the study of
German chemical weapons at the end of the war as a means to continue in
existence. George Merck both diagnosed biological weapons threats
for the military and sold the military vaccines to handle them.
War was business and business was going to be good for a long time to
considerably more in the article.
4. Obama Can't Get Dems To Back Horrible
Next a video by The Young Turks, which is about the TPP, that is a
secret trade deal that is intended to move most of the powers of the
states to corporations, and has - of course - the full support of Obama
It takes 10 minutes, but
it is a good explanation, and I also like it that Cenk Uygur refers to
Obama as "the Republican corporatist president", simply because that is
descriptively adequate: he is a corporatist, and he usually takes
Republican positions, even on Obamacare (for that is in fact Mitt
Back to the TPP, which is almost completely secret (which is
insane, in a real democracy), but is so for a "good" reason (and this
is quoted from The Huffington Post):
That is: it is secret because the public wouldn't agree, and we
- the secrecy proponents - do not care for the public: we only care for
business. (There is a quote in the video for this as well.)
In any case... here is the article from The Huffington Post
that is Cenk Uygur's source:
In brief: it is not
fair, it is secret, and it is deeply rotten and corrupt.
5. Writing The
Snowden Files: 'The paragraph began to
article by Luke Harding in the Guardian:
This starts as follows:
Actually, it is mainly
about Harding's strange experiences with computers. Here is a bit:
One day last summer – a
short while after Edward Snowden
revealed himself as the source behind the momentous leak of classified
intelligence – the
Guardian editor Alan Rusbridger got in touch. Would I write a
book on Snowden's story and that of the journalists working with him?
The answer, of course, was yes. At this point Snowden was still in Hong
Kong. He was in hiding. He had leaked documents that revealed the US
National Security Agency (NSA) and its British equivalent GCHQ were surveilling much
of the planet.
Our conversation took
place not in Alan's office but in an anonymous sideroom at the Guardian's
King's Cross HQ. Was Rusbridger's office bugged? Nobody knew. But given
the Guardian's ongoing publication of sensitive stories based on
Snowden's files this seemed a reasonable assumption. Britain's spy
agencies were good at what they did. Thus the project to chronicle
Snowden's story began in an atmosphere of furtiveness. And perhaps mild
By September the
book was going well – 30,000 words done. A Christmas deadline loomed. I
was writing a chapter on the NSA's close, and largely hidden,
relationship with Silicon Valley. I wrote that Snowden's revelations
had damaged US tech companies and their bottom line. Something odd
happened. The paragraph I had just written began to self-delete. The
cursor moved rapidly from the left, gobbling text. I watched my words
vanish. When I tried to close my OpenOffice file the keyboard began
flashing and bleeping.
However, I do not know
what this is due to: there are all kinds of explanations, and I also
suspect Harding is not much of a techie. Besides, he did recently write
a book about Edward Snowden.
But OK: he may have been spied upon, and this file also gives some
backgrounds to the writing of his book.
yesterday's personal item: I did yesterday evening re-upload all
of the meinadam directories, that is: I did re-upload all of
the following 15 directories:
Also, I should say that
there is on the moment no zip in the zip-section. And I should say
nearly all of this is in Dutch only.
Next, here is also a review of what I uploaded earlier this year, on
This means that all of
the log directory got re-uploaded except for Quotes. Finally on January
29 I uploaded all of the aristotle directory:
I should say that only
the Ethics has approximately full notes, but that there most of the
notes for the first book have disappeared in 2009, and were never
And the Politics Notes are halfly done: The first four books are there;
the last four books still have to be done.
Anyway... this is what has gotten re-uploaded this year, so far.
 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
if good, is part of its executive power. Here I quote Aristotle from my
More on stupidity, the rule of law, and Glenn
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
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: