This is a Nederlog
of Monday, December 25, 2017.
file is a crisis blog. There are 3 items in it, with 4 dotted
links, but all items
are a bit special because today it is Christmas:
Item 1 is about a
movie by Jakob Kornbluth with Robert Reich. It takes - in the present
version - 58 minutes, and I think it is quite good, and intelligent
people ought to see it. Item 2 is a partial
repeat from something I
wrote in September of this year. Item 3 is a partial
something else I wrote, on January
31, 2014, that itself was a
restatement of something I put on my site precisely three years ago, on
I think everything today is fairly theoretical, but then without any
theories you don't even know what will be or was.
Also, as I said, all of the above is a repetition of things I wrote
earlier, and indeed the most important part, which is section 3 below,
originated in almost the same form in November of 2012, and was
published on December 25, 2012.
So this is five years ago today, but I still think it is the best
analysis of what I have witnessed the last 16 years or the last 40
Therefore I repeat it once again.
Reich's "Inequality for All"
first item is a recent - well: from 2013 - movie of Jakob Kornbluth
(<- Wikipedia) with Robert Reich. It takes around 58 minutes:
is a movie about Robert
Reich (<-Wikipedia), and it explains his ideas about the
American economy. I like Reich (without always agreeing with him ) and I liked this movie, which I think intelligent
people should see.
Part of the ideas he
expounds concern this diagram, which charts inequality in the
United States through nine decades, and returns in several forms in
is a lot more in the movie, that also won at least one prize, and it is
all well explained.
The second item is by
myself and from September 21, 2015:
This is the last section from it, that starts
as follows (and as it happens with another link):
final article today is
by myself and from September 10, 2015:
If you did not read
this yet, it is well to do it now, for I will not repeat much of it but
will presuppose most of it.
I start with
noting that there are in the present Nederlog no less than four
definitions or characterizations of socialism: Margaret
Cole's, Chris Hedges', and now
which was as follows (in 1941):
And here is my own, in
answer to Orwell's:
- Nationalization of
land, mines, railways, banks and major industries.
- Limitation of incomes,
on such a scale that the highest tax-free income in Britain does not
exceed the lowest by more than ten to one.
- Reform of the
educational system along democratic lines.
I have the following
remarks on these definitions or characterizations.
 All mines, railways, banks and
industries are the property of those who work in them; all land
up to a
maximum is the property of whoever farms it, if it is farmland; all of the rest of
nature is the
property of everyone under the
responsibility of a parliament, that is the highest power in the
on such a scale that the highest tax-free income in Britain does not
exceed the lowest by more than twenty to one.
Reform of the
educational system along democratic lines.
The laws are retained, apart from the necessary changes that follow from the three previous measures, and
remain public and applicable to every citizen in the same way.
supremacy: The laws are maintained by parliament, and are
changed by ordinary majorities. Every adult has a right to vote for
everyone's vote counts as one. The parliament is the supreme
power in the state, and should work to maintain a socialist
of the definitions (or characterizations) is provably correct
or incorrect, at least for those (that include myself) who
insist that there are no (genuine) socialist states, and there
have not been ones either, for a very long time (and disregarding a few
If one does disagree -
one might instantiate Cuba or North Korea as
"socialist states", for example, or indeed Stalin's Soviet Union or the
present-day China - I think your standards are too low or simply
but that is all I say on this (fairly remote) possibility now.
Second, I think the
first definition of socialism (by Margaret Cole),
while being correct in principle, is too broad and too vague, whlle the
second definition of socialism (by Chris Hedges) is in part too vague
and in part too specific.
In either case, I want a
sufficiently general definition to identify
what socialism is or
might be, but without making it necessary to agree on
twenty or more things that are necessary to be a socialist.
definition of socialism seems more correct (and note
that his insistence on the limitation of all incomes and the importance
of education seem
to have been missed by
Cole, and in part by Hedges), though it is also
definition seems to me to be mistaken, and
In fact, I do not know
how socialistic that is. I suppose it is
socialism according to some, and not according to others.
A real socialist revolution - it seems - involves expropriating
the few who own most, but not by making the few who lead
the state command everything, and effectively, through having the
power, make even fewer than before own everything.
This is where my
repropriation  enters: I do not
want the state (or the party) to control, own or command everything, I
merely want the few rich to stop owing the corporations and the
land, and to hand the ownership of them to the people working in
them, who also are not allowed to earn more than twenty
times of what the least able earn.
I do not care either for - having seen how Soviet "socialism"
worked in practice - Soviet style "socialism", for I know I am a strong
opponent of state socialism, in which the very few who
command the state, thereby command and - effectively, if perhaps not
quite legally - own everything.
Sixth, I want to insist
that all of this is speculative, fantastical,
and has not been practised apart from small experiments and
state socialism (that failed within 72 years).
Then again, at least as
far as my definition is concerned, I'd
say that there is a simple majority in Western societies for
the last three points; and that limitation of incomes to within 20
times as much as the least able receive (which must be more than enough
to have a decent life) would not loose 97% of the
current population anything.
In fact, I'd be willing
to try just that: A system like the present
one, but one which is considerably more fair, and where all
incomes (and all ownership of things) are limited
to be within (in
Euro's) between 15,000 and 300,000 (within 1 to 20 times as much).
that socialism? Probably not, for socialism seems to involve
considerable expropriation of the rich, on Orwell's line or my
repropriation-lines. Then again, the proposed system amounts to little more than fixing
anyone can own or earn at 20 times of what the poorest can own or
earn, which means
that 97% of the people will not
loose a cent (and
may gain considerably).
Finally, will this
system be adopted? Not as long as the media
are in the hands of the few who get a lot more than 300,000 euros or
dollars a year. But at any rate it is a system were only the
very rich loose money; everyone else retains what he or she had or
receives more; where things can be arranged much more fairly; and that
differs little from the existing system, except that there is a cap on
incomes and on ownership.
3. 11 Hypotheses about the causes of
third item is also a repeat, namely of parts of this item:
I will repeat are merely the hypotheses in that item.
Here they are - and please note that the notes link back to earlier
items in Nederlog or to the Wikipedia.
Also, all of these
hypotheses were formulated in November 2012,
that is, without my knowing anything about Edward Snowden (who
in June of 2013, and whose data strongly support my hypotheses):
Extra hypothesis 11:
principle, corporate fascism
- defined as: the state is de facto owned and run by and for the
major international corporations, that are multinationals
and beyond state or judicial control [Note 1] -
in combination with the surveillance
state - defined as: the state's surveillance and recording
of the activities, interests, concerns, ideas, values, of its
- means effective absolute power for small corporate élites
plus their executives, and effective slavery for the rest. [N.7]
Hypothesis 2 (plus
ordinary citizens do, desire, think, write, mail - their internet
activities, their phones, their bankaccounts, their interests, their
identities, their pictures, their fingerprints, their families, their
friends, their opinions, their education, the things they bought and
sold, and more - has been thoroughly recorded and filed,
whenever and wherever possible, since 9/11/2001, namely for the
eventual use, by unknown anonymous persons, possibly acting, for unknown ends, for obscure or secret organizations, or for mostly
secretively acting corporations, all possibly at unknown locations, for
much or all that has been collected in one country gets - explicitly or
deviously - shared with the US and with the police or security
forces in other countries. [N.3]
Hypothesis 3 (plus sub-hypotheses):
This "sharing of
information" happens both by political agreements, where governments
agree with US state organs like the FBI or CIA that they will share
data on what are claimed to be (potential) "terrrorism suspects", and
by brute force: Whatever happens on the internet may be tracked, traced
and stored. [N.3.1]
In this "We the
people" have been systematically betrayed by politicians of all
stripes: Their rights not to be spied upon, except perhaps
court order, issued by an independent judge, have been completely
Likewise, and apart from
that, the internet activities of everyone have been secretively
tracked, traced, datamined, and stored for the benefit of corporations,
not only for targeted advertizing, but to get all possible information
on anyone who either may eventually become a customer, an employee or
an opponent. [N.4]
The corporations have
taken over the states by propagandizing and/or by buying the states'
bureaucrats and politicians. [N.1]
Hypothesis 4 (plus
This has been going on
for a long time - decades, and certainly since Eisenhower mentioned the
dangers of the military-industrial
complex - and has mostly succeeded
since 9/11/01: The majorities of those who should control the states
(politicians and bureaucrats) now are controlled by people working for
the big corporations. [N.1.1]
This was and is not
merely a matter of corruption and buying: Part was effected through propaganda. [N.1.2]
This also holds for
European states in EU, and explains why prominent politicians in
diverse parties sound as if they are singing from a GOP hymn sheet, and
use GOP tactics, such as nominally taking over the moral stances of
those they oppose. [N.1.3]
The states of
Europe and the US have been turned into surveillance states
where anonymous state bureaucrats in principle know all there is to
know about all ordinary citizens. [N.2]
Hypothesis 5 (plus sub-hypotheses):
This has been going on
since before 9/11/01, that much increased it, and is not only done
by state organizations but also by corporations, and in both cases was
possible because there are hardly any rational laws that can be
effectively applied to the internet. [N.2.1]
Most that what ordinary people
- the badly educated "democratic majority" - get offered in the public
media, and especially TV, is middle of the road propaganda,
that stonewalls, avoids or lampoons all that is not middle of the road
trivialities, and that systematically avoids (almost) any really
intelligent and informed discussion of the themes that matter to a free
society inhabited by free citizens who are not controlled and spied
upon and propagandized by both state organs and corporations. [N.5]
Education has been
systematically simplified, stupefied and leveled, and teaches hardly
any real intellectual skills. [N.6]
High culture and high
civilization and high art of all kinds: science, art, independent
media, music, in so far as these existed, have been cut or replaced by
middle brow or low brow stuff that nominally does the same, and is more
effective as propaganda for the masses. [N.6.1]
Additional reasons may
be that strangling high art and civilization, that often need subsidies
to exist, cost less and helps preventing that intellgent persons get ideas or find a public
for spreading their ideas. [N.6.2]
The primary end of
CF+SS I am talking about:
Power to the corporations,
over the state and over the
population, by buying, taking over, and/or turning into commercial
markets what once were the states' powers and institutions,
manage the majority of the ordinary citizens by propaganda, control,
surveillance, and force. [N.13]
The secondary end
CF+SS I am talking about:
A long lasting
authoritarian empire controlled by the corporate élite for the
corporate élites' benefit, with features of Stalinism, but much
strenghtened by the Surveillance State's absolute surveillance of all.
The ideology of the
corporate élite that is behind the efforts to realize CF+SS is
difficult to discern, except that clearly these folks - and their
spokesmen, as can be found in Fox News - believe they ought to run and
own the world and have an authoritarian and conservative agenda:
That those who control the
corporations should control the states, the
people and the world, presumably because they have the right and duty
to impose their ideology on others, while their actions must be good,
because by rising to control the corporations they have shown
themselves to be the best, and because any force used by the best for
declared good by the best must be good.
"The war on terror"
is - or seems much like - a program to introduce corporate fascism by
taking over the state and by introducing the surveillance
state, that watches, tracks and records all activities of all
ordinary citizens, so that these ordinary citizens can be controlled,
manipulated and propagandized.
and soon may be many more, (secret) concentration camps, secret
disappearances, secret renditions and secret prisons, because that is
and always was the nature of state terrorism,
and because most of the propagandized and ill-educated democratic
majorities support terrorism against those who have been styled
terrorists, especially if the latter do not belong to their own groups.
internet controls the world, at least implicitly.
Namely in four ways, at
- Governments and
corporations need the internet as information processors: Whoever gains
some control over some aspects of this - as do Google and Facebook, for
example - controls part of the content and the data mining that is
possible through that.
- The internet is
on physical computers, cables and broadcasters: Whoever can control
these, as can the state organs on whose territory these items exist,
has control of the functioning of them.
- The internet, in so
far as it is controlled, is controlled
by states and their organs:
Whoever controls the parliamentarians, ministers or chief bureaucrats
can shape legislation.
- Whatever runs on any
computer can be taken over by whoever can get control over the
computer: corporate or state secret spies, or state representatives
such as the police.
In fact, nearly all of
the above dates back to November of 2012. I also still think it is -
still - the best set of hypotheses about what has been happening in
the Western political world that I have read, and I should add that
it was all written before I knew of Edward Snowden's existence,
and before I knew of his very extensive evidence that, indeed,
surveillance is happening on these rates, that are totally illegal, in
my opinion, or if they are not, should be totally illegal.
Also, part of the reasons that this is the best set of hypotheses that
I have read is that I am meanwhile 67, have been thinking - quite
consciously, and with very much reading - about politics, economics,
philosophy and psychology for more than fifty years now, and have
excellent academic degrees in philosophy and in psychology.
Then again, as readers of Nederlog may know, in the Spring of 2012 my
eyes collapsed, and while they are considerably better now than they
were between 2012 and 2015 or 2016, they are still not quite right, and
they still trouble me, as does my ME/CFS, that I will have - if
I make it - for a full forty years on January 1, 2019 (slightly
over a year from now).
Both are serious handicaps, that also considerably limited
what I could do since the Spring of 2012.
And since that is so, all I will say here and now is that I intend
to somewhat rework the hypotheses of section 3, that do date back a
bit over five years now, in 2018, and especially with
regards to the surveillance.
Actually I should not need to add "(without always agreeing with him)"
because this seems to me rather self-evident, but I added it anyway,
because there are quite a few of fanatics, ideologists, and trolls.