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. Why there are no uploads
on my site
since June 29
(links, mostly without reviews)
3. Review of Jay&Scheer 5
is a Nederlog of Wednesday July 1, 2015.
This is not a normal crisis file
or Nederlog because while I can write it, I can't
upload it, and this also may take some days to sort out.
I explain this in a little more detail in item 1. I
decided to keep finding and linking crisis materials, which follow in item 2, but I also decided to comment
far fewer than I did before (see item 1), because I
also need time.
I did comment on one item, namely parts 5 of the interview Paul
on The Real News with Robert Scheer, and you'll find this (eventually,
I succeed in uploading) as item 3.
Item 4 is a list of conclusions for today.
Indeed I also plan to
continue the present schema until after I can upload again, that is -
since I do read the about 40 sites I read every day for NL - I will keep
selecting articles from sites, and upload the links, as in item 2 below, but I will not review them, or only a
selection, simply because this saves time and saves
health, and for the moment I have little of either.
1. Why there are no uploads on my site since
June 29, 2015
item today is an explanation of its title: Why there are no uploads on my site since June 29, 2015.
The basic reason is this: The programs I use for
uploading the sites, which happens with FTP (<-Wikipedia)
suddenly and unaccountably on June
29, and since then I have not been able to start them again.
I don't think it is a fault with the computer; it may be a fault in
Ubuntu though this is less likely; and all I do know on the moment is
that the two programs I
use on Ubuntu to get FTP-uploading to my sites done, that worked quite
well for over three years, stopped working and refuse to start.
I will have to sort this out, and eventually I will, but I do not
how long this will last (passwords, extremely slow help from providers,
bad health, tropical temperatures, other work I must do etc. etc.)
There are also two additional reasons why this may take some
time to sort out:
The first is that my health has been no good for some
two months now, which
seriously limits what I can do, while it also is going
to be tropically warm the coming days, which I don't like and is bad
for my health, and I also have to do some other things
- unrelated to computing - that will take time and energy this month.
The second is the more general issue that I have been
following the crisis now
for over two years - since June
2013 - and I do not know whether I want to continue it.
My basic reasons for that are that doing it as I did - basically:
reading 40 sites every day; selecting articles; presenting the articles
and reviewing them - takes a lot of time and
I do not know whether I want to go on with that, in
part also because I have reached some general and quite pessimistic
Indeed, this reason has been playing around for quite a while. I still
don't know what I will do, althiough Nederlog will certainly
there is one thing that I can do as long as I merely link
interesting articles about the crisis,
and do not review them (which takes the most time): I can write
some longer file
or files with my pessimistic conclusions about the crisis, and will.
Here is the summary:
- I can't upload on
the moment, and will try to sort this out the coming days or week,
which will eventually succeed.
- Until then I will continue
Nederlog (without uploading, until I can, again) but while I will keep
crisis-related articles I will only review a few of them,
because this is easier and I have to do other things as well.
- I will also try to
write out some of my general conclusions about the crisis.
Crisis materials (links,
mostly without reviews)
The next item today is
a list of articles with links. As I said in the previous item,
I will keep looking every morning at around 40 sites and
interesting articles, but for the moment I will not review most
of them: I merely list them.
This has two advantages:
Less work for me, but possibly more articles for my readers. Indeed
today is such a day, for I found ten articles.
Here they are: Titles + links + author(s) + site:
This is by Ian Traynor
and Jennifer Rankin on The Guardian.
of Jay&Scheer 5
The next item today is an
article by Alexander Reed Kelly
I will review this and start
with saying why: I like Robert Scheer; he is one of the most
important journalists in the U.S.A.; and I have reviewed the
first four parts of this series. Indeed, part 4 was reviewed here, and part 5, for which originally
there was no text, was summarized here.
Also, two other reasons to review this are that I think this series of
a bit more important than merely daily news, in part because Scheer
also is invited to think and speak about general themes, and gets a
fair amount of space
to do so, and because he is 79 (although he looks a lot younger).
This is from the beginning:
PAUL JAY: (...) Certainly Ronald Reagan’s presidency ushered
in this new phase of what people call neoliberalism and such, but it
was Bill Clinton—and you just mentioned—really helped regulate or
deregulate and create much of the bubble. And you can see it all
happening again. When Bill was elected, it was very Obama-esque. You
know, it was a change that people could believe in. Now the whole same
kind of sections of the elite are now all ready to inaugurate Hillary.
Yes, indeed and this is
also a very important themes: The presidential elections in the U.S.
are both faught and decided by propaganda and
not by real
information and (mostly) honest politicians. Also, this started mostly
in the early
seventies and late sixties, under Johnson and Nixon, and took great
it, starting with Reagan, and continued with Bush Sr. and Bill Clinton.
And Paul Jay is also quite correct in seeing the parallelisms
Bill Clinton and Barack Obama: Both were elected because they deceived
the people who chose for them, for in either case what they were promised
was change and policies the people understood
and agreed to,
while what they delivered was merely continuance of the
policies most people did not agree to, but
wrapped up in carefully planned pieces of populist presidential propaganda.
Finally, Paul Jay is also right in implying that fundamentally Bill
Clinton was a great liar and deceiver, who sold out whatever
in his policies, and replaced this by the propaganda and utter lies of
the "Third Way",
that effectively denied | any other social system than a deregulated capitalist one, that strongly
favoured the 1% of the richest, and delivered
this fundamentally by ceasing to
be leftist, progressive and liberal, and turning rightist, conservative
anti- democratic under the pretense that this is what the
people and the leftists needed
and wanted. It was all a well prepared system of lies, but it worked,
and it made the main quasi-leftist perpetrators, Bill Clinton and Tony
multi-millionaires. (They succeeded, and succeeded very well.)
Here is Robert Scheer, making a fundamental point:
Well, one of the problems that I find with my friends, people I like to
have dinner with and have known, is that it’s very easy for them to
demonize what they consider to be the far greater evil of the other
side. And I’m sure it comes back the same way. If you’re a fairly
reasonable Republican, you think, wow, these Democrats, they’re going
to bring about communism and they’re going to destroy individual
freedom, and they’re just horrible, which is not, of course, true. It
had never been true and it’s garbage. They’re just like you, and
they’ve gone to the same schools, and they have very similar thoughts,
and they can be bought off in the same way. And so Democrats do the
same thing about the Republicans.
Yes, but I think the
problem is more serious: These people have basically accepted
they are fed by their side as if it is the truth - which
it isn't, for it is propaganda, but they don't really see this,
And the reason this is more serious is basically that most people
mistake propaganda and truth because the main media have turned the
last 15 years
to writing and speaking propaganda
(hyperboles, large exaggerations,
falsities, subtle misdirections, gross re-definitions) much rather than
merely attempting to find the truth or prick through the
Scheer also makes an honest confession:
(...) And what’s lost in
this game of terrorizing people—and Ralph Nader understands this as
well as anyone. And if you want to ever ask me what I did wrong in
life, one of the stupid things I did was have a debate with Ralph Nader
on a Nation magazine cruise in which I was celebrating Obama and this
new progress. I drank the Kool-Aid. And Ralph Nader was saying,
nonsense; they’re going to give you the same old crap is the other guys
do, ‘cause they own both parties. And he was right and I was wrong.
Yes, that seems to me to
be quite true and quite honest - and please mind this is about 2008
(when Scheer was ca. 72).
Here is some more:
SCHEER: (...) And
all my life I’ve voted for—I voted for Dianne Feinstein. I think she’s
been a horror. You know, I voted for Clinton. I went to a White House
dinner at Bill Clinton’s invitation, and Hillary Clinton said I was her
favorite correspondent—or favorite columnist in the world. You know, I
wrote nice things about the Clintons, as well as critical things. And I
understand how seductive this argument is that those Republicans are
really bad, dangerous people, and on the other hand, folks that we hang
around with or support, they may not be the greatest, but at least
And here is another thing on
the subject of propaganda
(which has become very much more
important the last 35 years) and politicians:
SCHEER: (...) And
Nixon, being a politician above everything else—that’s what we forget,
being a careerist, which is what all of these people really are. You
know, they’re politicians. (...)
I've lifted this out of a lot
more because I think this is a quite important point:
Leading politicians are not ordinary men,
and they are subtly
different in being
far more careerist,
far less honest, far more
manipulative, and doing things, at least in so far as the
electorate is concerned at least, by deception, fraud, misdirection and
(generally intentionally false) redefinitions of terms,
situations, principles and facts.
Also, this is true of all leading
politicians, left, right and center:
What you see, if you see one, is a propagandist deceiver, whose words
you cannot trust, because he or she got where they are
by being the
most successful liars,
and pretenders their parties could
And this was different until about 30 years ago, not because
any better, but basically because there was a lot less propaganda
also was a still competent press that wanted to report the facts rather
propaganda of the politicians or governments.
And this had - among many other important consequences - the following
SCHEER: What I’m
talking about is: what is the core ideology of any of these people? The
core ideology of any of them is opportunism. It’s their career, their
advancement, their short-term gain, their sense of how they can move
ahead. We do not have statesmen or stateswomen in the old-fashioned
sense of people with a longer-run view.
For they are all lying,
and they are lying fundamentally (1) because this pays and makes them
more powerful, and (2) because most of the free press ceased to
Here is another point relating to this:
American people have got to rise to the responsibility of citizenship
and ask themselves, do I want to really build another carrier or do I
want to engage in drone warfare, do I want to have cyber war that’s
going to drive—do I want to do this surveillance state and spy on
everybody in the world and make that a way of life? There are a lot of
big questions about how we use our resources and how we are governed
and elite and so forth. And that requires a movement that’s based on
skepticism of those in power no matter which party. That’s the
assumption of the American experiment. That’s the whole reason we have
freedom of press, freedom of assembly, that they can’t invade our
houses. That’s why we have the Bill of Rights, that’s why we have
separation of powers, that’s why we have checks and balances, because
we assume people are corrupted by power.
Yes, I agree - but (1)
"the American people"
just doesn't have the knowledge and the education to see through the
propaganda they are fed by all political directions
and (2) I believe "freedom of
press, freedom of assembly, that they can’t invade our houses" and "the
Bill of Rights" and - especially! - "separation of powers" have been mostly neutralized
and done away with by the goverments and the leading
politicians: They mostly exist because they are good propaganda
for politicians, but the politicians themselves know that these
are not the real rules
they play by: it are merely the stuff the electorate likes to hear, and
that gets them elected.
You may disagree, but: "freedom of the press" has been mostly
given up by the mass media, and got replaced by something much
cheaper, easier and more emotional: propaganda;
"freedom of assembly" still exists but (i) is difficult if you
are black or have a mexican background, and also (ii) is hardly
because it is no more reported, unless tens of thousands get in the
street; "that they can’t invade
our houses" has in practice been turned totally around: the
government (and big corporations) now knows absolutely everything
about you, indeed quite as if they are masters and the people
are slaves, and insists they have the right and the duty, as state
terrorists, supposedly because of the - utterly false - "terrorism"
(which is no real danger to the U.S., Canada, Australia etc.); "the
Bill of Rights" still exists formally but in practice gets undercut by
- secret - redefinitions of key terms, by legal actions
("Citizens United"!), and by political lack of interests; and
indeed the whole concept of "separation
of powers" has been totally
done away with: the U.S. government for a good part exists of
former bankmanagers (of Goldman Sachs, especially) who turned
politicians for a while to further deregulate,
after which they return through the revolving doors to their banks to
make tens of millions a year for themselves (and then they may return
again as politicians etc.)
So I look upon this in a considerably less optimistic way than
Of course, I may be mistaken, and even if I am not, it may - eventually
- not work out as bad as I think it may work out (say - for example -
if there is no next crisis and Bernie Sanders gets elected), but as is,
I think the big corporate managers have won, and are running
government and the political parties, and have most of the
powers they want, and also have billions and billions of dollars to
buy, corrupt or influence whatever they do not already rule.
And about the only countervailing forces I can see are the
the free press (such as: Truthdig, Common Dreams, Mother Jones, The
Intercept, Truth-out, Consortiumnews, The Guardian); a minority of
journalists; some public intellectuals; and a minority of the
electorate, most of whom are more intelligent and better educated
than the majorities who elect the propagandistic bank-
managers-turned-politicians who rule the U.S. since the turn of the
Originally I intended to do part 6 of the
interview by Paul Jay of Robert Scheer here as well, but since this is
long enough as it is, I will leave that till tomorrow
or the day after.
Also, since I can't upload this, and I don't yet know
how long that will last, there is also this: I will try to keep
up writing Nederlogs for later publication, that depends on my being
able to upload them, but they probably will be briefer.
For as I said, while the main reason that you cannot read this on July
1, 2015, when this was written, is that I can't upload, it is also a
fact that I need to do
quite a few other things than computing, while my health is
currently - and since 2 months - worse than it was since 2012, and also
there seems to starts a period with tropical temperatures in Amsterdam,
which I tend not to cope well with.