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Nederlog

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Crisis: On Roy Moore, Constitutional Crisis, Trump's Enablers, "Russia-gate", The Internet
 
Sections                                                     crisis index
Introduction

1. Summary
2.
Crisis Files
     A. Selections from December 12, 2017
Introduction:

This is a Nederlog of Tuesday
, December 12, 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 and since two years (!!!!) 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.

Section 2. Crisis Files

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

A. Selections from December 12, 2017
1. On Eve of Alabama Senate Election, a Look at Roy Moore’s
     Racism, Homophobia & Religious Fanaticism

2. The Coming Constitutional Crisis
3. Trump's Enablers: A Leader This Malignant Stays in Power With
     a Lot of Help

4. Russia-gate’s Litany of Corrections
5. To Save Internet They Helped Create, Web Pioneers Demand
     FCC Cancel Net Neutrality Vote 
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. On Eve of Alabama Senate Election, a Look at Roy Moore’s Racism, Homophobia & Religious Fanaticism

This article is by Amy Goodman on Democracy Now! It starts with the following introduction:

Democrat Doug Jones and Republican Roy Moore are locked in a tight and increasingly controversial race to fill the Alabama Senate seat left vacant by Attorney General Jeff Sessions. The election is on Tuesday. A Democrat hasn’t won a U.S. Senate race in Alabama for 20 years. Polling shows the two candidates are neck and neck, despite Moore being accused by at least nine women of sexually harassing or assaulting them when they were teenagers. President Donald Trump has repeatedly endorsed Roy Moore, including on Friday, when he held a rally in Pensacola, Florida, which is 20 miles from the Alabama border and in the same media market as Mobile, Alabama. Roy Moore has had a long and highly controversial political career in Alabama that’s been marked by racism, homophobia, Islamophobia and religious fanaticism. Over the weekend, the Doug Jones campaign orchestrated a massive get-out-the-vote effort, particularly targeting African-American voters. A number of prominent African-American politicians, including New Jersey Senator Cory Booker, Alabama Congressmember Terri Sewell and former Massachusetts Democratic Governor Deval Patrick, all campaigned for Jones over the weekend. For more, we speak with Peter Montgomery, senior fellow at People for the American Way. His most recent piece is headlined “There’s More Than One Roy Moore Scandal.”

Yes indeed, and I normally reproduce the introductions of the interviews from Democracy Now! simply because they are good.

Here is more:

AMY GOODMAN: That’s President Trump speaking Friday. He has also recorded a robocall endorsing Roy Moore.

PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP: Hi. This is President Donald Trump, and I need Alabama to go vote for Roy Moore. It is so important. We’re already making America great again. I’m going to make America safer and stronger and better than ever before. But we need that seat. We need Roy voting for us.

AMY GOODMAN: Roy Moore has had a long and highly controversial political career in Alabama that’s been marked by racism, homophobia, Islamophobia, religious fanaticism. Judge Moore was twice ousted as Alabama’s chief justice, first in 2003 for refusing to remove a monument of the Ten Commandments in the rotunda of the Alabama Judicial Building. After being re-elected, he was again ousted in 2016, for ordering his judges to defy the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling legalizing marriage equality. He was a proponent of Trump’s racist and discredited “birther” theory about President Obama. He’s compared homosexuality to bestiality. He said Minnesota Congressmember Keith Ellison shouldn’t have been allowed to be sworn into Congress using a Qur’an, which he compared to Mein Kampf.

In 2011, Roy Moore proposed eliminating all amendments after the 10th, which includes amendments prohibiting slavery and the amendments giving women and African Americans the right to vote. In September, when asked at a campaign rally when he thought America was last great, Moore said, quote, “I think it was great at the time when families were united—even though we had slavery—they cared for one another. … Our families were strong, our country had a direction.”

I say. That is, the elections, in Alabama to be sure, are between a neofascistic racist, a hater of homosexuals, a hater of Islamists, a religious fanatic, a "birther", a pro slavery man and - therefore, and I am a psychologist - an utter sicko and someone who opposes this.

These elections are "
a tight and increasingly controversial race"...

I am sorry, but this is all you get on this from myself. There is considerably more filth in the rest of the interview, that is also recommended simply because Amy Goodman and I seem to agree for the most part, but I will not quote more (and indeed take it easy today).


2. The Coming Constitutional Crisis

This article is by Bill Blum on Truthdig. It starts as follows:

Hegel remarks somewhere that all great world-historic facts and personages appear, so to speak, twice. He forgot to add: the first time as tragedy, the second time as farce.
—Karl Marx, “The Eighteenth Brumaire of Louis Napoleon” (1852)

Anyone following the Mueller investigation of alleged Russian meddling with the 2016 U.S. presidential election can sense that the legal noose around the Trump administration is tightening and that something very big is about to happen.

To date, Justice Department special counsel Robert Mueller III has indicted two top Trump campaign aides—Paul Manafort and Richard Gates—on charges of money laundering, failing to register as foreign agents, conspiracy against the United States, and other serious federal felonies stemming from their work on behalf of the former pro-Russia government of Ukraine. In addition, Trump’s first national security chief, Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, has pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI about his post-election contacts with then-Russian ambassador Sergey Kislyak about the lifting of U.S. sanctions. And one-time foreign policy adviser George “Coffee Boy” Papadopoulos has pleaded guilty to lying about his attempts during the campaign to obtain dirt on Hillary Clinton, including her 30,000 deleted emails, from Russian sources.

Actually, Marx's quotation (know to me for something like 60 years, because I had - real - communists as parents) is a bit too general (Hegel's "all" was much more inspired by his illogical dialectics than by historical insight) and also not bitter enough: If events like tragedies apparently repeat (e.g. WW I and WW II) the repetition often is more tragic than the original (as was WW II, indeed: tens of millions of civilans killed, six millon murdered because of their supposed race).

But this was an aside, although the last link is good and brief. As to the rest of the quoted bit: I more or less agree, although I myself rather strongly doubt that

"something very big is about to happen."

And my reason is quite simple: Both the House and the Senate are in Republican hands, and most Republicans support Trump, while also nearly all Democrats seem to be sold as much to the rich bankers as nearly all of the Republicans.

Also, while I agree that even bankers-supported Democrats will probably vote against Trump, I think there simply are not enough of them to push through an impeachment.

Here is more:

No one seriously believes that Mueller is finished. As I noted in my last Truthdig column, both Donald Trump Jr. and Jared Kushner are on the hook for various acts and omissions that fall within Mueller’s broad mandate to investigate “any links/and or coordination” between Donald Trump’s election campaign and Russia, and “any matters that may arise” directly from such an investigation. The president himself is also in jeopardy for possibly attempting to obstruct the probe.

Well... Watergate went towards an impeachment after Nixon had fired the special prosecuter who was investigating them, and could proceed because of some Democratic majorities (and also because the mainstream media in the early 1970ies were much more prone to publishing the truth about many things rather than drown them in euphemism, propaganda or silence).

And while I am strongly for removing Trump, these seem to be the relevant facts at present. Which make it unlikely Trump will be impeached in 2018.

Here is the last bit that I quote from this article:

But so, too, is Mueller in jeopardy. He’s not in imminent danger of being charged with any federal crimes but of being sacked by Trump in a redux of the “Saturday Night Massacre,” the name given to Richard Nixon’s October 1973 firing of Archibald Cox, the first Watergate special prosecutor, who subpoenaed Nixon to turn over audiotapes made in the Oval Office regarding the Watergate burglary and subsequent cover-up.

Yes indeed, and I just referred to that. There is considerably more in this article, that is recommended, but I have given my - I admit: unfortunate - ideas about Trump's impeachment: I don't think it is likely soon, although I am sorry.

3. Trump's Enablers: A Leader This Malignant Stays in Power With a Lot of Help

This article is by Eileen M. Russell Ph.D. on AlterNet. It starts as follows:

Anyone who spends a lot of time studying the mind, behavior, emotions and communications of human beings could have told you Donald Trump was disturbed and unfit to hold the office of president, or any significant public service office, well before he decided to make a run for it. When he did make that fateful decision, there were plenty of warnings from experienced politicians, leaders, journalists, and ordinary citizens alike that this was not a good idea.

It did not take long for experienced mental health experts to speak out, abandoning the equivalent of professional gag orders for the sake of what many considered to be of higher importance and graver concern. They believe Trump is not only "not a good idea," but a danger to America, to the world and to the existence of American democracy (see The Dangerous Case of Donald Trump). It seems the country has found validity for its own fears and reactions in the analyses of these experts about how truly dangerous he is.

I have spent "a lot of time studying the mind, behavior, emotions and communications of human beings", for I am an M.A. in psychology and a B.A. in philosophy, and I also have spent a great lot of time the last 4 1/2 years of reading and reviewing articles on surveillance and - especially but not only - American politics.

In my eyes, the above is slanted and propagandistic, for there were far too few "warnings from experienced politicians, leaders, journalists, and ordinary citizens alike that this was not a good idea", and that was mainly due to the propaganda and the lies furthered by the mainstream media, and the virtually open and continuous and unpaid for TV coverage of Trump, e.g. on CBS.

Then again, Ms Russell Ph.D. "is a clinical psychologist in private practice"; I guess she may be around 40 years younger than I am; and while I am a psychologist (with very probably far better degrees than Ms Russell), I also have insisted, indeed since 1980 (when I did also have an excellent B.A. in philosophy, in which I was (and am) mostly interested in philosophy of science), that psychology is for the most part not a real science, as are physics, chemistry or indeed biology. Here is a decent explanation of what are mostly my views as well: it is by Paul Lutus and has (now) the following title: Psychology and Neuroscience.

Besides, while there were a few "experienced mental health experts to speak out" it also seems to me that the vast majority of "experienced mental health experts" were much more interested in their own money and power than in defeating the insane prohibition of the APA that no one is allowed to diagnose someone without his or her personal consent, indeed also not if it is an obvious madman who may blow up everyone there is.

Finally, the last bit

It seems the country has found validity for its own fears and reactions in the analyses of these experts about how truly dangerous he is

is also clearly a mixture of euphemism and propaganda. ("the country"?!?!)

Here is some more from the same source (and remember "the country" and its "found validity"):

When he blows through norms of presidential conduct, they stretch the norms to make room for him, as if we had all agreed presidential norms were far too restrictive and needed loosening. When he lies, they lie right along with him as if there really were such things as "alternative facts." When he says something openly hateful, it is denied that it was hateful, as if we all don’t share a common language and cultural understanding. When he threatens and humiliates his own staff we are told he is being “reined in,” as if the American public should find comfort in the idea that the president needs to be reined in. And when he turns around and does it again at the remotest sign of competition, we are asked to accept that no one can control him and that controlling him is not in anyone’s job description.

Yes, I mostly agree to that. But I also did a lot of mathematical logic and it seems as if Ms Russell Ph.D. is not capable of noticing contradictions: If the above is more or less true, and I think it is, it seems to my (logically educated) mind pretty inconceivable how she could assure her readers just a bit earlier that (bolding added)

"the country has found validity for its own fears and reactions in the analyses of these experts about how truly dangerous he is"

For between one third and one half of the American voters disagree with this; voted Trump into office; and are strongly in favor of Trump.

Finally, the article ends ends in the spirit of the fraud Allen Frances (also see here) who denied that Trump has "a grandiose narcissistic personality disorder" because of an utter irrelevance; who agreed with the APA no one should be diagnosed by any American psychiatrist without his or her consent, and who proceeded to diagnose ALL Americans as psychotics (which happens to be a contradiction):

In some collective way, whether we voted for Trump or not, we are responsible for the calamity of this presidency. This is because the epicenter cannot hold if the system changes. And the system cannot change until we hold ourselves and all the enablers responsible. We are all potentially dangerous. But we are also all potentially corrective.

I did not vote for Trump (or against him) because I am Dutch. But that does not matter to Ms Russell Ph.D. for (bolding added)

we are responsible for the calamity of this presidency

and "we" means you, and me, and Ms Russell Ph.D., and indeed the 7 billion other persons alive: They are all  (bolding added) "responsible for the calamity of this presidency".

I am. You are. And I say. (For she appears to be diagnosing of 7 billion persons: "we are responsible", indeed whether we voted for him or not).

Well... one of the (many, good) reasons I concluded in 1980 that psychology is not a real science, apart from small parts like statistics, some methodology, and psycho- physiology (as it was then called), is that the psychologists who taught me (and indeed especially the clinical psychologists) seem to be about as gifted, morally and intellectually, as is Ms Russell, Ph.D.


4. Russia-gate’s Litany of Corrections

This article is by Robert Parry on Consortiumnews. It starts as follows:

The U.S. mainstream media’s year-long hysteria over Russia’s alleged role in the election of Donald Trump has obliterated normal reporting standards leading to a rash of journalistic embarrassments that have both disgraced the profession and energized Trump’s backers over new grievances about the MSM’s “fake news.”

Misguided groupthink is always a danger when key elements of the Washington establishment and the major news media share the same belief – whether that is Iraq’s supposed possession of WMD or the need to bring down some foreign or domestic leader unpopular with the elites.

Yet, we have rarely witnessed such a cascading collapse of journalistic principles as has occurred around the Russia-gate “scandal.” It is hard to keep track of all the corrections or to take note of all the dead ends that the investigation keeps finding.

Yes indeed. I mostly agree with Robert Parry, and have been agreeing with him (and the VIP and informed others) about "Russia-gate". See the crisis index with "Russia-gate" if you are interested.

Here I give two links to my Philosophical Dictionary in support: First, there is groupthinking, about which Parry is quite right, and indeed this is also quite important.

And second there is totalitarianism, that these days is intentionally falsified by Wikipedia, that seems to be very rapidly overtaken by the right these days, and that has now ever more propaganda that pretends falsely to represent "a world-wide view" (which is an insane demand to start with).

I think both of my references are quite relevant. (But I suppose I am lying according to the sickos who (re-)wrote "totalitarian" on the Wikipedia - and I am sorry, for this made me a strong opponent of the strongly declining Wikipedia.)

Here is more, and all of this are excellent examples of my definitions of totalitarianism and of groupthinking:

But anyone who dares note the errors, the inconsistencies or the illogical claims is either dismissed as a “Kremlin stooge” or a “Trump enabler.” The national Democrats and the mainstream media seem determined to keep hurtling down the Russia-gate roadway assuming that the evidentiary barriers ahead will magically disappear at some point and the path to Trump’s impeachment will be clear.

Here is more that strongly relates to definitions of totalitarianism and of groupthinking:

The string of errors followed a pattern of earlier false and misleading reporting and other violations of journalistic standards, a sorry record that has been the hallmark of the Russia-gate “scandal.” Many stories have stirred national outrage toward nuclear-armed Russia before petering out as either false or wildly exaggerated. [See, for instance, Consortiumnews.com’s “Russia-gate Jumps the Shark.”]

As Greenwald noted, “So numerous are the false stories about Russia and Trump over the last year that I literally cannot list them all.”

Yes indeed. And here are the totalitarian ends that all this groupthinking seeks to establish (but not according to the anonymous folks of Wikipedia):

So, on Thanksgiving Day, just weeks after the election, The Washington Post published a front-page story based on an anonymous group called PropOrNot accusing 200 Web sites of acting as propaganda agents for Russia. The list included some of the Internet’s leading independent news sources, including Consortiumnews, but the Post did not bother to contact the slandered Web sites nor to dissect the dubious methodology of the unnamed accusers.

Apparently, the “crime” of the Web sites was to show skepticism toward the State Department’s claims about Syria and Ukraine.

Quite so. And this is a recommended article.


5. To Save Internet They Helped Create, Web Pioneers Demand FCC Cancel Net Neutrality Vote

This article is by Jake Johnson on Common Dreams. It starts as follows:

Joining the revolt taking place in the streets and online against FCC chair Ajit Pai's plan to kill net neutrality, more than 20 pioneers of the internet—including world wide web inventor Tim Berners-Lee, Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak, and Vint Cert, one of the "fathers of the internet"—published an open letter on Monday slamming Pai's proposals as "flawed and factually inaccurate" and demanding that his agency cancel its planned Thursday vote.

"The FCC's rushed and technically incorrect proposed order to abolish net neutrality protections without any replacement is an imminent threat to the internet we worked so hard to create," the letter reads. "It should be stopped."

Yes, this is all true and indeed you can also find the complete open letter these "fathers of the internet" wrote, a few days before it was too late.

I am sorry, but I think some "fathers of the internet" are personally quite responsible for the utterly illegal surveillance of everyone by many secret services and also by Google, Facebook, Apple, Microsoft, Amazon etc. for I cannot understand the horrible deceptions on which the internet is based, except because they were wanted and desired.

Here are - once again - the plans and "foresights" of Zbigniew Brzezinski from 1967. I quote what I wrote about him on August 1, last:
"
(1) the internet has been designed to take away democracy, democratic freedom, and incomplete control of "the people" by the rich corporations, which I do think because the late Mr. Zbigniew Brzezinski knew very well he was already planning this in 1967/1968 (even before the arrival of personal computers), as can be seen from these quotations from that long ago, that were first given by me in 2012:

The idea of the technotronic society seems to be under the
auspices of Zbigniev Brezezinski, until recently a member of
the Policy Planning Staff of the State Department, and now
Director of the Research Institute of Communist Affairs at
Columbia University. The 'technotronic society' seems to be the
exact opposite of the society of 'spontaneity' demanded by
revolutionary students, who Mr Brezezinski evidently regards
as pathetic throw-backs, survivors of Romantic days, forlornly
playing out anachronistic roles:

Our society is leaving the phase of spontaneity and is entering a
more
self-conscious state; ceasing to be an industrial society, its is
being
shaped to an ever-increasing extent by technology and electronics,
and thus becoming the first technotronic society. This is at least in part the cause for much of the current tensions and violence, and largely the reason why events in America today do not fit established categories of analysis.

Mr Brzezinski realises that the technotronic society fills some
people with uneasiness (in this respect the reactionaries and the
revolutionaries are as one).
(...)
However Mr Brezezinski does not expect that the Luddite
lovers of freedom and anarchy will seriously obstruct the new
order. For one thing, 'it will soon be possible to assert almost
continuous surveillance over every citizen and maintain  up-to-
date, complete files, containing even personal information
about the health and personal behaviour of the citizen, in
addition to the more customary data.' Moreover it will be
possible to anticipate and plan to meet any uprisings in the
future. The police will even be able to forecast crises before the
rioters themselves are conscious of wanting them.

And this is from the Wikipedia-article about Brzezinski (of 2012: meanwhile this - of course - has disappeared from Wikipedia: Wikipedia does not want you to know these things, or so it seems to me):

"The technetronic era involves the gradual appearance of a more controlled society. Such a society would be dominated by an elite, unrestrained by traditional values. Soon it will be possible to assert almost continuous surveillance over every citizen and maintain up-to-date complete files containing even the most personal information about the citizen. These files will be subject to instantaneous retrieval by the authorities." – Between Two Ages: America’s Role in the Technetronic Era, 1970

Also: (2) the internet and the personal computer and cellphone are the tools of neofascism, that in the last 40 years has won most political and ethical fights, and is the probable future of everyone.

You may not believe this, but then you have not heard in 1978 in the "University" of Amsrerdam, in its official opening of that year, the sick utterly fascistic lie that

"Everyone know that truth does not exist"

nor were you the child of very courageous communist persons who were some of the few that had fought in the Dutch Resistance, nor were you since then, and for forty years, without any excuse, being told by the fascist terrorists who ruled and rule the "University" of Amsterdam that you are "a dirty fascist" and you are "a terrorist, a terrorist, a terrorist" (in 1988, when my right to take my - brilliant - M.A. in philosophy was denied to me, also in a very sadistic manner, by the fascist Board of Directors of the "University" of Amsterdam).

But I have been told all these things, and these things were done to shut me up; and I have that background, and I still can think.
"

And indeed that is what I still think - and see here.

------------------------------
Note

[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 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 (!!).

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