July 30, 2018

Crisis: Michael Cohen, Rentier Capitalism, Permanent Lie, New York Times, Ahed Tamimi


1. Summary
Crisis Files
     A. Selections from July 30, 2018

This is a Nederlog of Monday, July 30, 2018.

1. Summary

This is a crisis log but it is a bit different from how it was until 2013:

I have been writing about the crisis since September 1, 2008 (in Dutch, but since 2010 in English) 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 more than 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 I shall continue.

2. Crisis Files

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

A. Selections from July 30, 2018:
1. Michael Cohen Takes a Bullet
2. Our 'Rentier Capitalism' Is One More Nail in Earth's Coffin
3. The Permanent Lie, Our Deadliest Threat
4. New York Times Publisher Asks Trump to Reconsider Anti-Media

5. Ahed Tamimi and Her Mother are Freed from Jail
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. Michael Cohen Takes a Bullet

This article is by Charles Blow on The New York Times. It starts as follows:

Here’s to Michael Cohen. He’s finally getting something right.

First, let’s state forthrightly that Cohen, Trump’s longtime lawyer, the fix-it man, the one who mopped up Trump’s messes, the one who said he would “take a bullet for the president,” is an incredibly unsavory character and a bully.

He thought himself a tough guy, Trump’s muscle collecting the crumbs of Trump’s money.

For instance, in 2015 he threatened a Daily Beast reporter who was writing about the time Trump’s first wife, Ivana, claimed Trump had raped her, only to later say that she didn’t want her use of the word rape “to be interpreted in a literal or criminal sense.”

According to that reporter, Cohen erroneously — and outrageously — claimed, “You cannot rape your spouse,” before launching into this tirade:

“I will make sure that you and I meet one day while we’re in the courthouse. And I will take you for every penny you still don’t have. And I will come after your Daily Beast and everybody else that you possibly know … So I’m warning you, tread very [expletive] lightly, because what I’m going to do to you is going to be [expletive] disgusting. You understand me?

“You write a story that has Mr. Trump’s name in it, with the word ‘rape,’ and I’m going to mess your life up … for as long as you’re on this frickin’ planet … you’re going to have judgments against you, so much money, you’ll never know how to get out from underneath it.”

This is not a likable man, or one deserving of sympathy.

Yes indeed. In case you don't know who Michael Cohen is, this was a link: Cohen used to be Trump's special counsel and also served as vice-president of the Trump Organization. And he is in some legal trouble both about Trump's behavior and his own behavior.

Here is some more from the article:

It is becoming incredibly clear that Cohen has broken from the president, as he keeps signaling that he is willing to disclose whatever he knows of Trump’s concealments. And he could know quite a bit.

CNN reported on Friday that “sources with knowledge” told the network that Trump knew of the infamous Trump Tower meeting during the campaign in which Russians promised dirt on Hillary Clinton.

According to the report:

“Cohen alleges that he was present, along with several others, when Trump was informed of the Russians’ offer by Trump Jr. By Cohen’s account, Trump approved going ahead with the meeting with the Russians, according to sources.”

That revelation would be damning if true, not only because Trump and his associates have repeatedly lied about the nature of that meeting, but also because it would go more directly to the heart of collusion and conspiracy.

I say, although I do not know, and I do not know because, while I do believe that Trump in various senses did commit "collusion and conspiracy" I do not believe Hillary Clinton's story, and indeed I also do not know what "collusion and conspiracy" the writer of the article refers to.

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

[A]s Cohen attorney Lanny Davis told CNN’s Chris Cuomo last week:

“Why is Giuliani out falsely disparaging Michael Cohen — because they fear him.” Davis continued:

“What do they fear, Chris? Why am I representing him? They fear that he has the truth about Donald Trump. He will someday speak the truth about Donald Trump.”

For this, Trump world will seek to destroy him. Michael Cohen will indeed take that bullet, metaphorically speaking of course — not for Trump, but from him.

Possibly so, but I do not know what Cohen knows. Then again, if he does know things the telling if which would endanger Trump's presidency, I would not at all be amazed if he meets a real bullet.

2. Our 'Rentier Capitalism' Is One More Nail in Earth's Coffin

This article is by Paul Street on Truthdig. It starts as follows:

“Workers of the world unite, you have nothing to lose but your chains.” This famous socialist slogan, adapted from Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels’ “The Communist Manifesto,” struck Noam Chomsky as a poor fit for most people in the world’s rich nations almost half a century ago.

“There is no doubt,” Chomsky wrote in August 1969 (when I was a sixth-grader mourning the Chicago Cubs’ collapse before the onrushing New York “Miracle Mets”), “that we can learn from the achievements and failures of revolutionary struggles in the less-developed countries. …” But, Chomsky added, “In an advanced industrial society, it is, obviously, far from true that the mass of population have nothing to lose but their chains … [since] they have a considerable stake in preserving the existing social order.”

Yes, precisely - and I had the same insight and indeed a bit earlier than Chomsky. Then again, this was mostly because of my background and curiosity: I was the child of two very sincere and very courageous communists, and my father had quite a few of the books of Marx, Engels, Lenin and also Stalin in his bookcases, and I had started reading in them in 1964, and indeed initially believed most things.

Then again, our family had been quite poor from 1950 till 1965, in part because many were poor, and in part because my father was a well-known communist and well-known strike leader, which made him getting any work often a matter of his future mates willing to strike so that he would get work.

But by 1965 we, indeed like the rest of Holland, got considerably more money and it were these two facts that made me doubt the Marxist class analysis, which indeed is sketched in the first sentence of the above quote: In the first place, I thought "class" or "classes" or "class solidarity" all very vague concepts (and it did not work at all e.g. in WW I), and in the second place, I realized what Chomsky said: Ordinary workers, doing ordinary jobs all had considerably more to loose than just their chains (although I guess this was more or less true in the 1800s when Marx wrote).

And this were two of the reasons why I gave up the communist class concept: I believed in the rich and the poor, but not so much in a class of workers extended over Europe, feeling solidarity, and cooperating.

Back to Street:

Similar developments occurred in Western Europe, where les trentes glorieuses
(the “30 golden years” of 1945 to 1975) brought unprecedented middle-class expansion and prosperity combined with a significant reduction in inequality and poverty. Things have changed. Inequality has resurged significantly in the “advanced” nations (what one academic calls “the affluent capitalist democracies”), bringing depressing expansions of poverty.

After four-plus decades of neoliberalism, we now live under the rule of a rentier capitalism, in which the top 10th of the upper U.S. 1 percent owns as much wealth as the nation’s bottom 90 percent. CNBC reported last fall that 57 percent of Americans have less than $1,000 in savings; 39 percent have no savings at all.
Precisely - and I like to add that the "“30 golden years” of 1945 to 1975" were in fact mostly the outcome of Keynes (who was not at all a Marxist but a liberal) and his Keynesian economics. And in economical terms, neoliberalism was the end and the opponent of Keynesianism.

Here is one analysis (that doesn't mention Keynes, but seems correct):

Four basic underpinnings of the more broadly shared prosperity in the post-World War II years have been undone inside the “advanced” nations, helping to create such shocking inequality and poverty in the U.S.

First, rising productivity used to be matched by rising wages. However, beginning in the 1980s, U.S. wages stagnated while productivity continued to soar.

Second, rising employment used to generate corresponding wage hikes. This is no longer the case. Today, when employment rises, wages stay stagnant or fall because the new jobs pay worse than the old jobs. The long Obama-Trump “recovery” is biased toward—one might even say contingent upon—the expansion of low-paid jobs, as has been most job growth in the long neoliberal era.

Third, rising employment used to produce more tax revenue for the public sector. Again, this isn’t true today, because so many new jobs pay too little and governments have raised the threshold for paying income tax.

Fourth, rising company profits used to lead to higher average pay. That, too, has gone away. As the British economist Guy Standing noted in his indispensable 2016 book, “The Corruption of Capitalism: Why Rentiers Thrive and Work Does Not Pay”: “Profits are more concentrated in [largely high-tech] firms that don’t employ many workers. Employment has grown mainly in low-tech sectors, weakening the link between profits, employment, and wages.”

I think the above is mostly correct, and like to add that the last statement of the above quote seems to empirically contradict Marx's analysis of profits.

Then there is this, with which I am less happy because it introduces "a new “global class structure”":

Across the “rich” nations, Standing found, a new “global class structure” has been “superimposed on preceding class structures.” It consists of six core constituent elements defined largely by their ability or inability to garner income from the ownership of property and from the political power and policy influence that flow from that possession: “a tiny plutocracy (perhaps 0.001 percent) atop a bigger elite, a ‘salariat’ (in relatively secure salaried jobs), ‘proficians’ (freelance professionals), a core working class, a precariat, and a ‘lumpen-precariat’ at the bottom.”

Again, this might have been phrased as: There are the very rich; the somewhat rich; the freelancers; the core working "class"; the office workers, and the real poor. I would have agreed to that analysis, but not to casting this analysis into a "class analysis" (that is, moreover "superimposed on preceding class structures"), because I do not believe in "classes" such as seem intended.

Here is more on - Marx's - "working class":

The classic working class, or proletariat—people working in stable, full-time wage positions usually with schooling that matches the skills their jobs require—is fading, except in China and India. It has been shrinking dramatically in the “developed” world throughout the neoliberal era, a period of savage deindustrialization in the rich nations. That’s because big capital and the better-off salaried and professional “elites” have increasingly relied less on the production of goods and services for their wealth and income as they make more money on the parasitic extraction of rents rooted in the monopolistic ownership of assets.

Quite so: The very rich realized there is much more profit from workers who earn 1 or 2 dollars a day than from workers who earn 7 to 20 dollar an hour, and so the neoliberals reworked the laws and allowed the rich to transport their industries to the poorest of the poor nations, in order to make themselves the richest of all the rich there had ever been.

And in case you are 18 now, and not rich, I am afraid your future in 30 to 50 year will be extremely much poorer than even I am - and I have earned less the last 50 years than anybody else who managed to remain out of prison: I absolutely never got as much as "the legal minimum", among other things because, while my ex and I have a "serious chronic disease" for forty years (!!!) now, this was never admitted till March of 2018.

Here is more by Street:

It has nothing to do with the mythical “free market” capitalism that neoliberal politicians claim to uphold. It’s about the rich using the state to make themselves richer and to thereby—since wealth is power and pull—deepen their grip on politics and policy.

Precisely. And indeed "“free market” capitalism" either was a straight lie from the rich or else it was an utterly false piece of ideology: There never were "free markets" after 1800 or so.

Here is more:

The “plunder of the commons” has put humanity on the path to ecological self-extinction as we march to the plainly fatal mark of 500 carbon parts per atmospheric million by 2050, if not sooner.

Yes, I quite agree. Since I'll be 100 in 2050, I very probably shall not make it, and I am quite glad for myself, but those who are 18 now will be 50 in 2050, and I am afraid - always if they are not rich - that their lives will be (even) harder than mine, and their chances much smaller.

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

As Marx (a great devotee of science) would certainly recognize if he were granted a posthumous research trip into the 21st century, capitalism has not produced its own working-class “gravediggers” (the “revolutionary” industrial proletariat he thought he saw coming into being in his time). The profits system is not the “dialectical” midwife of socialism. It is an environmental as well as social, political and spiritual cancer—an exterminist endgame wired to take us beyond mere precarity to full-on extinction. If all of us—from the bottom up and top down—don’t figure out how to become the undertakers of this commons-plundering rentier regime, the insight of onetime leading neoconservative philosopher Francis Fukuyama will be borne out, though not in the sense he meant: Capitalism will indeed mark “the end of history and the last man,” through literal extinction.

Yes, I quite agree and this is a strongly recommended article.
3. The Permanent Lie, Our Deadliest Threat

This article is by Chris Hedges on Truthdig. It starts as follows - and I should add that since Chris Hedges is currently on holiday, Truthdig reprinted an article of him from 2017, which I then reviewed.

Here it is once again, with some notes and some very small changes (of typos):
The most ominous danger we face does not come from the eradication of free speech through the obliteration of net neutrality or through Google algorithms that steer people away from dissident, left-wing, progressive or anti-war sites. It does not come from a tax bill that abandons all pretense of fiscal responsibility to enrich corporations and oligarchs and prepares the way to dismantle programs such as Social Security. It does not come from the opening of public land to the mining and fossil fuel industry, the acceleration of ecocide by demolishing environmental regulations, or the destruction of public education. It does not come from the squandering of federal dollars on a bloated military as the country collapses or the use of the systems of domestic security to criminalize dissent. The most ominous danger we face comes from the marginalization and destruction of institutions, including the courts, academia, legislative bodies, cultural organizations and the press, that once ensured that civil discourse was rooted in reality and fact, helped us distinguish lies from truth and facilitated justice.
Professor M.A. Brandt (who still seems alive [2]) told his audience during the public opening of the "University" of Amsterdam, in August 1978, that my father and mother were sick liars when they said there truly had been a Holocaust, and that my father and mother were sick liars when they told that both my father and his father had truly been locked up in Nazi concentration camps, for he told his audience the following, that is literally translated:
"Everybody knows that truth does NOT exist"
This logically implies the sick fascistic totalitarian lies that "Everybody knows" that it cannot be possibly true that there was a Holocause [2]; that it cannot be possibly true that there were Nazi concentration camps, or even that Holland had truly been occupied by the Germans between 1940 and 1945: All utter baloney according to professor M.A. Brandt, historian.

"Everybody knows that truth does NOT exist", according to Brandt.

I leave this for now, except for adding that (i) this statement that "Everybody knows that truth does not exist" was the official ideology of the "University" of Amsterdam at least during its communist years (from 1971 till 1983) and its postmodern years (from 1984 till 1995); that (ii) this was so precisely because it served the interests of many students in the "University" of Amsterdam, who had been given the formal majority in each and every Dutch university in 1971 (which was a unique situation in the whole world); that (iii) I was one of the circa 5% (!!) of the students who opposed this; and that (iv) to show me their thanks and the absolute nature of their tremendous power in Amsterdam (a) I was first terrorized - while ill, living with an also ill wife - for three years in the student flat in which we had to live, while (b) I was next terrorized - while ill - for three and half years by the illegal soft and hard drugsdealers who were mayor Van Thijn's very good personal friends, while also (c) I was - still ill - also denied the legal right of taking my M.A. in philosophy from the "University" of Amsterdam very briefly before taking it, because I had criticized the incompetent parasites who "taught" me philosophy: This was forbidden both by "the philosophers" of the UvA (none whom ever published anything, while receiving millions) and it was forbidden by the fascist terrorists who functioned as the Board of Directors of the "University" of Amsterdam.

Here is more by Chris Hedges:
Donald Trump and today’s Republican Party represent the last stage in the emergence of corporate totalitarianism. Pillage and oppression are justified by the permanent lie. The permanent lie is different from the falsehoods and half-truths uttered by politicians such as Bill Clinton, George W. Bush and Barack Obama. The common political lie these politicians employed was not designed to cancel out reality.
The permanent lie is not circumscribed by reality. It is perpetuated even in the face of overwhelming evidence that discredits it. It is irrational. Those who speak in the language of truth and fact are attacked as liars, traitors and purveyors of “fake news.” They are banished from the public sphere once totalitarian elites accrue sufficient power, a power now granted to them with the revoking of net neutrality.
Yes and no, but the reasons for my (also) saying no are somewhat technical: I do not believe in a "permanent lie" of the kind Hedges may believe in, and indeed I do not because of the ways in which humans learn language, which very strongly presupposes some understanding of the facts in front of one's nose.

People do not tell their young children "See, this is a dinky toy. You can smell it, taste it, touch it, and see it. But really it does not exist. It simply isn't there: you are imagining things." And the result of lying a lot by people who have you in their power does not lead to a quasi-reality of (supposed) lies opposed to a reality of
(supposed) truths, but into confusion and uncertainty.

In fact, something like this happens (and this is also quoted by Chris Hedges):
“The result of a consistent and total substitution of lies for factual truth is not that the lie will now be accepted as truth and truth be defamed as a lie, but that the sense by which we take our bearings in the real world—and the category of truth versus falsehood is among the mental means to this end—is being destroyed,” Hannah Arendt wrote in “The Origins of Totalitarianism.”
I mostly agree.

Next, there is this, with which I mostly disagree, indeed in part because it is too negative, and in part because it seems to underestimate (!!) both the greed and the utter dishonesty of those trying to popularize some form of totalitarianism:

The permanent lie is the apotheosis of totalitarianism. It no longer matters what is true. It matters only what is “correct.” (...)
They hold reality, including science and the rule of law, in contempt. They seek to banish those who live in a reality-based world defined by intellectual and moral autonomy. Totalitarian rule always elevates the brutal and the stupid. These reigning idiots have no genuine political philosophy or goals. They use clichés and slogans, most of which are absurd and contradictory, to justify their greed and lust for power.
First, what is "totalitarianism"? One can't believe the very rapidly disintegrating Wikipedia anymore (but check it out if you want to) [3] but the proper definition of totalitarianism is this (and it is mine, and is based on very extensive reading):
Totalitarian: Ideology or religion that is pretended to have final answers to many important human questions and problems and that is pretended to be thereby justified to persecute persons who do not agree with the ideology or the religion.
Note that this does not itself have anything to do with lying, deceiving, or falsifying (although I agree they usually are involved indirectly). What matters is simply an ideology or religion with extremist pretensions about what it's followers are allowed to do with those who disagree with it: These may be killed or locked up, simply because they disagree.

Second, not only does totalitarianism itself not have much to do with lying etc. (that is: totalitarianism may simply be believed by its followers) but it also does (usually) not have much to do with an opposition between "
a reality-based world" and one which is not thus based (for in fact most totalitarians insist their ideology implies it alone is true).

Third, I agree mostly with the rest: Totalitarians often are "
brutal and (..) stupid"; totalitarians usually strongly rely on "clichés and slogans"; indeed many of these tend to be "absurd and contradictory"; and totalitarianism in fact tends to justify the "greed and lust for power" of the leaders of the totalitarians.

But I also think that totalitarians usually have some "
genuine political philosophy or goals", and namely that their own species of totalitarianism is both valid and the final truth.

Then there is this, which happens to be by a Dutch psychiatrist. And I am sorry, but I disagree with this as well (and I am - i.a. - a psychologist who disbelieves in the current psychiatry):
“The venal political figures need not even comprehend the social and political consequences of their behavior,” psychiatrist Joost A.M. Meerloo wrote in “The Rape of the Mind: The Psychology of Thought Control, Menticide, and Brainwashing.” “They are compelled not by ideological belief, no matter how much they may rationalize to convince themselves they are, but by the distortions of their own personalities. They are not motivated by their advertised urge to serve their country or mankind, but rather by an overwhelming need and compulsion to satisfy the cravings of their own pathological character structures. The ideologies they spout are not real goals; they are the cynical devices by which these sick men hope to achieve some personal sense of worth and power. Subtle inner lies seduce them into going from bad to worse. Defensive self-deception, arrested insight, evasion of emotional identification with others, degradation of empathy—the mind has many defense mechanisms with which to blind the conscience.”
How does Joost Meerloo know that what moves totalitarians or rich men is not their "ideological belief" (stupid, inconsistent and made up mostly of wishful thinking as this may be) but in fact is made up from "the distortions of their own personalities" (or "the cravings of their own pathological character structures")?!

I do not know. But being a psychologist I do know that real mental illness is not common, while - also being a philosopher - I know that all ideologies, and indeed the greatest part of most philosophies, are not true.

In brief, I strongly prefer to maintain that those I disagree with are usually not mad and may very well be (privately, at least) quite convinced of "the truth" of the ideology they happen to believe in, indeed also in part because the ideologies one does believe in normally are both familiar, not difficult, and rather amenable to one's own personal interests.

This does not mean that I may not think that they are dishonest, ignorant, immoral or unethical, but then again none of these - very ordinary(!) - shortcomings coincides with some state of personal madness.

Finally, here is the last bit that I quote from this article:
“Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities,” Voltaire warned.
In fact, when I had a site I very soon - I think already in 1997 - opened it with Voltaire's
"If we believe in absurdities,
  we shall commit atrocities."
I take it this is translated from precisely the same French source as the translation I use (and indeed Hedges' translation may be more correct - though indeed I don't know).

But I do like Chris Hedges, even if I do not quite agree with them, because he writes well, he is interesting, he usually makes a lot of sense, and he also is a really brave man.

And if I differ with him about truth, as I do in the above, this is in part because I am a real philosopher, and in part because my battle with the "university" of Amsterdam started now over 40 years ago. This is a recommended article.

4. New York Times Publisher Asks Trump to Reconsider Anti-Media Rhetoric

This article is by Darlene Superville on Truthdig and originally on The Associated Press. It starts as follows:
The publisher of the New York Times said Sunday he “implored” President Donald Trump at a private White House meeting this month to reconsider his broad attacks on journalists, calling the president’s anti-press rhetoric “not just divisive but increasingly dangerous.”

In a statement, publisher A.G. Sulzberger said he decided to comment publicly after Trump revealed their off-the-record meeting to his more than 53 million Twitter followers on Sunday. Trump’s aides had requested that the July 20 meeting not be made public, Sulzberger said.

“Had a very good and interesting meeting at the White House with A.G. Sulzberger, Publisher of the New York Times. Spent much time talking about the vast amounts of Fake News being put out by the media & how that Fake News has morphed into phrase, “Enemy of the People.” Sad!” Trump wrote.

Sulzberger, who succeeded his father as publisher on Jan. 1, said his main purpose for accepting the meeting was to “raise concerns about the president’s deeply troubling anti-press rhetoric.”

“I told the president directly that I thought that his language was not just divisive but increasingly dangerous,” he said.

Sulzberger said he told Trump that while the phrase “fake news” is untrue and harmful, “I am far more concerned about his labeling journalists ‘the enemy of the people.’ I warned that this inflammatory language is contributing to a rise in threats against journalists and will lead to violence.”

Well... I suppose I more or less agree with Sulzberger, indeed also because he is the new publisher of The New York Times. Then again, while I can agree to the purpose and the fact of the meeting, it does not amaze me at all that Trump only heard what he wished to hear, and that the meeting probably was senseless.

Here is more by Sulzberger:

“I warned that it was putting lives at risk, that it was undermining the democratic ideals of our nation, and that it was eroding one of our country’s greatest exports: a commitment to free speech and a free press,” the publisher said.

Sulzberger added that he made clear that he was not asking Trump to soften his attacks against the Times if he thinks the newspaper’s coverage is unfair. “Instead, I implored him to reconsider his broader attacks on journalism, which I believe are dangerous and harmful to our country,” he said.

As I said, I think that what he said was correct, but probably was not heard by Trump. And this is a recommended article.

5. Ahed Tamimi and Her Mother are Freed from Jail

This article is by Ray McGovern on Common Dreams and originally at Consortiumnews. It starts as follows:

When they left prison on Sunday Ahed Tamimi and her mother Nariman received a hard-earned heros’ welcome from Palestinians and others opposed to Israel’s occupation and colonization of Palestinian lands seized in 1948 and enlarged by the Israeli army in 1967.

Ahed is 16 years old. Last December, an Israeli soldier shot her cousin in the face. The next day Israeli soldiers menacingly showed up at her house the West Bank village of Nabi Saleh. What would you do?

Ahed slapped one of the armed-to-the-teeth soldiers. While some Israeli politicians said she should be put away for life and others demanded a sentence of at least ten years, the Israeli occupiers sentenced her to eight months for the slap seen around the world. Her mother Nariman filmed the incident and was thrown in jail too, this time for incitement. (It was not the activist Nariman’s first time in an Israeli prison.)

I say, because I did not know all this. And it is here because I like Ray McGovern, and think Ahed Tamimi is quite brave.

Here is one more bit:

(..) I had a chance to ask Bassem about the nonviolent, but frontal, resistance to Israeli occupation and colonization.

“Your sons have been beaten and badly wounded and one’s still in prison; your wife is in and out of prison: your brother-in-law was killed by a sniper bullet; you yourself have been tortured in prison; your house is on the list for demolition — why do you persist; why encourage such actions?” I asked.

“We have no alternative,” Bassem replied matter-of-factly, “it is our land and our life. I will not tell my children or my people to acquiesce in the Israeli occupation — ever.”

I say. This is a recommended article.


[1] I have now been saying since the end of 2015 that 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 (!!).

[2] He seems to have died earlier in 2018.
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