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Nederlog

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Crisis: Lies, CIA, Trumpian Masses, GOP´s Scapegoats, Obama Cashes In


Sections                                                                     crisis index
Introduction

1. Summary
2.
Crisis Files
    A. Selections from September 19, 2017 

Introduction:

This is a Nederlog of Tuesday, September 19, 2017.

1. Summary

This is a crisis log but it is a bit different from how it was the last four years:

I have been writing about the crisis since September 1, 2008 (in Dutch) and about the enormous dangers of surveillance (by secret services and by many rich commercial entities) since June 10, 2013, and I will continue with it.

On the moment I have problems with the company that is supposed to take care that my site is visible [1] and with my health, but I am still writing a Nederlog every day and will continue.

2. Crisis Files

These are five crisis files that are all well worth reading:

A. Selections from September 19, 2017

The items 1 - 5 are today's selections from the 35 sites that I look at every morning. The indented text under each link is quoted from the link that starts the item. Unindented text is by me:

1. LIES, LIES & OMG MORE LIES

This article is by Administrator on The Burning Platform. It starts as follows:

“There are three types of lies — lies, damn lies, and statistics.” – Benjamin Disraeli

Every month the government apparatchiks at the Bureau of Lies and Scams (BLS) dutifully announces inflation is still running below 2%. Janet Yellen then gives a speech where she notes her concern inflation is too low and she needs to keep interest rates near zero to save humanity from the scourge of too low inflation. I don’t know how I could survive without 2% inflation reducing my purchasing power.

This week they reported year over year inflation of 1.9%. Just right to keep Janet from raising rates and keeping the stock market on track for new record highs. According to our beloved bureaucrats, after they have sliced, diced, massaged and manipulated the data, you’ve experienced annual inflation of 2.1% since 2000. If you believe that, I’ve got a great real estate deal for you in North Korea on the border with South Korea.

“Lies sound like facts to those who’ve been conditioned to mis-recognize the truth.”DaShanne Stokes

Yes, indeed. I have an excellent M.A. in psychology and I do have some talent for mathematics, but what I learned about statistics in psychology, including what I learned about ¨experiments¨ as done in psychology (which differ considerably from the experiments physicists do, for example), together with the very good education in philosophy of science and methodology that I acquired by myself between 1971 and 1980, had convinced me by 1980 that psychology, which I then had been studying for two years, was,  indeed apart form a few fields like mathematical statistics,   methodology and psychophysiology, not a real science like physics or chemistry or (even) biology are. (For more, see Paul Lutus.)

I never changed that position, but I do not know Administrator´s intellectual education in statistics, methodology and philosophy of science, although indeed Administrator is - like me - a skeptic about the ¨statistics" that are being spread by the present and previous American governments, and also prints quite a few graphics that I have not copied and leave to your interests.

Here is one example of how people are frauded by ¨statistics¨:

All is well. Real median household income just surpassed the level achieved in 1999. Think about that for a second. It took seventeen years for the average American family to get back to a household income of $59,000. The $59,000 of household income in 2017 doesn’t quite go as far as it did in 1999, with even BLS manipulated inflation showing an 87% increase in medical costs, 80% increase in energy costs, 51% increase in food costs, 53% increase in housing costs, and a 115% increase in college education. And of course the BLS changed their methodology, boosting household income by $1,700 in 2013. So, in reality it is still below 1999 levels.

When you consider 50% of all households make less than $59,000, have not benefited one iota from the Fed/Wall Street debt engineered stock bull market, have less than $1,000 in savings, and less than $50,000 of retirement savings, you realize your Deep State masters must propagandize economic data and manipulate inflation and unemployment figures to keep the masses confused, deluded, and misinformed. The Big Lie is their strategy of choice.

Yes indeed, and there is more in the article. Here is how Americans get defrauded by their own government as regards health care:

Medical care advancing by 87% since 2000 sounds substantial, but that only equates to annual inflation of 3.5%. I’d love to find anyone in this country who has only seen their medical costs rise by 3.5% per year. The blatantly shameful falsification of medical inflation is evident to anyone living through the current Obamacare nightmare. According to these BLS prevaricators, health insurance has only risen by 21% since the passage of the Obamacare abortion bill. That lie is beyond comprehension as anyone living in the real world has likely experienced insurance premium increases exceeding 100% since 2009.

This article (in which there is considerably more, and quite a few graphics) ends as follows:

Those in power know their decades of propaganda and social engineering in public schools have dumbed down the masses to such an extent not one in ten could even tell you what CPI stands for, let alone how it is measured. Any critical thinking intelligent person aware of their daily costs knows their true annual inflation rate isn’t 1.9%. It exceeds 5% and has exceeded 5% since 2000. Anyone reading and understanding this article is a dangerous man to the government. We know they are dishonest, insane and intolerable. Our job is to spread discontent until a tipping point is reached. I don’t think we are too far away.

“The most dangerous man to any government is the man who is able to think things out for himself, without regard to the prevailing superstitions and taboos. Almost inevitably he comes to the conclusion that the government he lives under is dishonest, insane and intolerable, and so, if he is romantic, he tries to change it. And even if he is not romantic personally he is very apt to spread discontent among those who are.”H.L. Mencken

I mostly agree, although I do not know when ¨a tipping point is reached¨. And this is a recommended article.

2. Mike Pompeo's CIA Will Not Reflect America's Diversity

This article is by John Kiriakou (<-Wikipedia) on Truthdig. It starts as follows:

The CIA has never been a bastion of progressive thinking. It wasn’t until 1994 that an employee could even admit that he or she was gay or bisexual. I remember when Bill Clinton lifted the ban on LGBT men and women serving at the CIA. A friend came out to me one day, and I responded with a hug, saying, “That must be such an incredible weight off your shoulders.” He burst into tears.

In the intervening years, through Presidents Clinton, Bush and Obama—and through all their CIA directors—LGBTQ CIA employees were able to form support organizations, organize programming and sponsor events in the intelligence community. The CIA also began to recruit openly gay officers. Their integration was seamless.

But now Mike Pompeo is CIA director. An evangelical Christian, the former congressman has a record that proves he is no friend of the LGBTQ community. And his behavior since becoming CIA director does nothing to change that conclusion.

Ahem. I am 67 and I am neither Lesbian, nor Gay, nor Transsexual, nor Queer, nor Questioning and while I wish the people who are well, I have to admit that (i) I am personally not much concerned with movements that cover at most 10% of all people, and to none of which I belong; (ii) I do not think being pro LGBTQ is the hallmark of being Leftist (though it very well may be the hallmark - next to political correctness - of ¨the left¨ [2]), while also (iii) I have been ill now for nearly 40 years in which the real disease I have is simply not investigated because psychiatrists [3] are against this (which means that worldwide over 15 million ill people with my disease have had hardly any help or research since 1965), while people who believe that they ¨are in the wrong body¨ are being operated, usually on psychiatric advice, and are given alternative sex organs - which strikes me as a quite strange and a quite strong difference between folks with ME/CFS like I have since 1.1.1979, and folks who believe they ¨are in the wrong body¨.

Also, I have to say that I never was an admirer, a fan or a supporter of the CIA. Here is Kiriakou´s ending of this article:

The CIA’s failures are well known. Indeed, Tim Weiner won the National Book Award for documenting those failures in “Legacy of Ashes: The History of the CIA.” But one thing that ought to be easy to get right is to hire a diverse workforce, to make that workforce look like America, whether it’s black, brown, white, gay or straight.

The agency won’t, though. The CIA does what it wants, when it wants. It answers to nobody—not to the cheerleaders on Capitol Hill who call themselves members of the oversight committees or to the federal courts, which bow down to the CIA’s leadership in the interest of “national security.” This problem won’t get any better as long as Mike Pompeo is running the place.

I agree that ¨the CIA does what it wants, when it wants. It answers to nobody¨. Well, I think you should not be a member of such a secret force, indeed whatever your sexual orientation may be.


3. President Trump’s Mass Movement

This article is by Lawrence Davidson on Consortiumnews. It starts with the following subtitle:

President Trump is building a mass movement – or a cult of personality – based on the alienation that millions of Americans feel toward the economic/political system, as Lawrence Davidson describes.

I think that may very well be correct. Here is the beginning of Davidson´s article:

In the Sept. 10 issue of the New York Times, there are two opinion pieces that have to do with Donald Trump and his supporters. One is entitled “The Trump Fever Never Breaks” and the other is “President Trump’s War on Science.” As we will see, the two pieces actually address different aspects of a single evolving phenomenon. However, we will examine each in turn and tie them together as we go.

The piece on Trump fever was written by Katy Tur, a correspondent and anchor for NBC. She covered Trump for “500 days” running up to his election and notes that “his supporters were tired of everything except him. And that is still true.” The sense she got, and obviously still has, is that Trump’s base will never abandon their man no matter how much he lies or fails to deliver on his promises

Well... this is just one article by one journalist, who certainly cannot have spoken with more than a small fraction of the ca. 60 million who voted for Trump, nor indeed of the - supposed - 37% of them who still fanatically support him.

I do not say this article isn´t true, but even it it is founded on excellent evidence it still is one article by one journalist, that also reaches to November 7, 2016 and not really further.

Then there is this:

Irrelevant Science

In their search for a new America, one that allows them a sense of belonging rather than alienation, the zealots making up this incipient mass movement are unconcerned with what underpins traditional America. This unconcern is reflected in the fast and loose way both they, and Trump himself, play with facts. Thus, factual descriptors of reality, in this case science and its investigations, are of little account and, if necessary, can be cast away.

This seems to me much better founded, and indeed there is a lot of evidence, also from many different news sources, that strongly supports it.

And here is a summary of the other article in the NYT:

This brings us to the second Times editorial – the one about “President Trump’s War on Science.” This piece is the paper’s own editorial and thus unsigned. It represents a rundown of how the Trump administration is systematically dismantling all federally funded scientific programs that could add to the cost of production or otherwise interfere with a multitude of polluting industries. This is being done even though the consequence, as the Times puts it, is that “the future isn’t going to be nearly as promising for ordinary Americans as it should be.”

And this seems to me also a lot better founded than the first article. Here is Lawrence Davidson´s inference from these two articles (and what he knows otherwise):

True Believers

The 37 percent of the American population who still support President Trump are evolving a consciousness more responsive to political propaganda and socio-economic mysticism than to rational debate or fact-based policy formulation. They no longer care about the latter approaches because they seem to hold no promise for them. These people are neither Republicans nor Democrats – they are instead the true believers of a political evangelist.
(...)
And it is mutating into a mass movement of zealots who are devoted to and unquestioning of their leader. How President Trump wants to use, or manipulate, this following is still not clear. But what is clear is that this is a phenomenon with dangerous precedents and it needs close watching.

Hm. I agree many Trump voters are not rational, not fact based, and indeed also not intelligent and not informed, and that this is quite problematic, were it only because they do have the vote.

Then again, I do not think this amounts to ¨37 percent of the American population¨, though I do agree with Davidson that ¨that this is a phenomenon with dangerous precedents and it needs close watching¨.


4. 8 of the GOP's Favorite Scapegoats That Get Trotted Out When Things Don't Go Their Way

This article is by Brook Bolen on AlterNet. This starts as follows:

Republicans have a way of relying on scapegoats when their plans don’t work out as expected. There are so many go-to GOP scapegoats, it would be impossible to name them all here. I’m sure many of you have your favorites: Black Lives Matter, the EPA, feminists, climatologists, Islam, income taxes, Michael Moore, Hillary Clinton, and anybody who ever says the words “gun control." If you can name it, they can blame it.

In no particular order, here are eight of the GOP’s favorite scapegoats.

Yes indeed: I think Brook Bolen is quite right, also in the examples given above. Here are seven more, and these are quoted without the text that comes with each of these seven points, for which I refer you to the original:

1. Transgender people
2. Planned Parenthood
3. George Clooney
4. Labor Unions
5. Barack Obama
6. Latinos
7. The 'Liberal' Media
8. Voter Fraud

And this is a recommended article.


5. After Failing to Prosecute Bankers, Obama Cashes In With Wall Street Speeches

This article is by Jake Johnson on Common Dreams. It starts as follows - and it articulates an assumption about Barack Obama that I have since 2009: He too wanted to become a multi-millionaire with more than 100 million dollar, like Bill Clinton, and he thinks he can get that amount of money from the bankers that both helped a great lot.

Well...

Less than a year has passed since he departed from the White House, and former President Barack Obama has already joined the "well trod and well paid" Wall Street speaking circuit, a decision many argued will negatively impact the Democratic Party's credibility as it attempts to fashion a message around taking on corporate monopolies, tackling income inequality, and loosening the insurance industry's control over the American healthcare system.

According to a Bloomberg report published Monday, Obama has in the last month delivered two speeches to massive financial firms—Northern Trust Corp and the Carlyle Group—for around $400,000 a pop, and he is slated to attend a three-day conference hosted by Cantor Fitzgerald next week, for which he will make another $400,000.

And that is a mere $1.2 million dollars for three speeches - while Bill Clinton got ¨merely¨ $750.000 dollar for three of his speeches to similar audiences.

Clearly, I think both Clintons (indeed like Tony Blair) owe the $120-$150 million dollars they presently seem to own to eight years of intrigueing for the banks and the bankers, and it seems fair and realistic to say that while these made, collectively, billions of dollars, they also did let trickle down a small part to their main two helpers, namely Clinton and Obama.

Obama, however, doesn't appear to harbor any concerns about the political impact his speeches may have—a fact that could be problematic for the Democratic Party, Bloomberg's Max Abelson notes.

"While he can't run for president, he continues to be an influential voice in a party torn between celebrating and vilifying corporate power," Abelson writes. "His new work with banks might suggest which side of the debate he'll be on."

News of Obama's decision to "cash in" following his eight-year presidency drew significant ire, particularly given his administration's failure to enact sufficient structural changes to the financial system following the worst economic collapse since the Great Depression.

As Abelson observes, Obama's "Justice Department prosecuted no major bankers for their roles in the financial crisis, and he resisted calls to break up the biggest banks, signing a regulatory overhaul that annoyed them with new rules but didn't stop them from pulling in record profits."

It would seem to me that Mr. Abelson has a very slow understanding if he still thinks that it is a question which side Obama is on: The paying side, with the big money, that can easily afford to give him $400,000 ¨for a speech¨.

And here is a sensible reaction from Cooper (whose Tweet I abbreviated some, because I very much dislike Tweets):

Responding to Bloomberg's report, a Twitter user asked Ryan Cooper, national correspondent for The Week, what a person could do in order to receive $400,000 for a single speech.

Cooper responded with a two-step plan:

1) become president
2) do not enforce laws against securities or mortgage
    fraud (..)

But this indeed seems quite correct to me. There is more in the article, that is recommended.

------------------------------
  Notes

[1] I have now been saying since the end of 2015 that xs4all.nl is systematically ruining my site by NOT updating it within a few seconds, as it did between 1996 and 2015, but by updating it between two to seven days later, that is, if I am lucky.

They have claimed that my site was wrongly named in html: A lie. They have claimed that my operating system was out of date: A lie.

And they just don't care for my site, my interests, my values or my ideas. They have behaved now for 1 1/2 years as if they are the eagerly willing instruments of the US's secret services, which I will from now on suppose they are (for truth is dead in Holland).

The only two reasons I remain with xs4all is that my site has been there since 1996, and I have no reasons whatsoever to suppose that any other Dutch provider is any better (!!).

[2] I do distinguish between ¨the left¨, which exists in my experience since 1977, and that can be identified by political correctness, pro LGBTQ-ness, and varying amounts of feminism and environmentalism, and the Left, that exists since the 1820ies or 1790ies, that can be identified with anti-capitalism, humanism, science, equal incomes, and anti war, and that I know very well - unlike nearly all ¨leftists¨ - because both of my parents were real Leftists for 45 years, as were three out of four of my grandparents.

And I am sorry, but for me ¨the left¨ looks more like a bunch of frauds than like honest, decent, intelligent persons, and indeed I was for 12 years, according to these ¨leftist¨ capitalist careerists, made out to be (screaming, in public) ¨a dirty fascist¨ and ¨a terrorist¨ simply because they disagreed with me. Also, most of these leftists (especially those who made hundreds of thousands being journalistic ¨leftists¨) have - mostly already in 1991 - insisted that from now on they were neoconservatives.

All could continue their journalistic careers and their excellent payments, after falsely pretending to be Leftist Revolutionaries (for good payments) from 1971 till 1991.

[3] I don´t believe in psychiatry, and indeed very few of the psychologists I studied with or was educated by believed in psychiatry. I do not know most of their reasons, but they certainly were correct in that. If you want to consider my reasons - those of a philosopher and a psychologist - you can look here: My
DSM-5: Question 1 of "The six most essential questions in psychiatric diagnosis" and my DSM-5: 100 Nederlogs  about and around the APA and the DSM-5 and also my long review of the ideas of Thomas Szasz, that you'll find here: Thomas Szasz's ideas about psychiatry.
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