Archive for March 17, 2020

US Politics: One Party, With Two Right Wings

Posted in American politics, democracy, Democrat, elite, empire, empowerment, far right, fascism, freedom, health, politics, Republican, U.S., Uncategorized with tags , , , , on March 17, 2020 by jtoddring

 

Stephen Lendman described and contextualized it well in his article, “US Indifference to Public Health: The Shame of the Nation”

 (stephenlendman.org – Home – Stephen Lendman)

He wrote, “Both right wings of the US one-party state serve privileged interests exclusively at the expense of public health and welfare.

It’s been this way throughout the nation’s history, notably since the neoliberal 90s, especially post-9/11 when Republicans and undemocratic Dems declared war on humanity at home and abroad.”

Exactly. There is no concern for public health among either wing of the party of big business – just as there is no genuine concern for liberty, equality, or democracy.

US elites, both Democrats and Republicans, two wings of the now far right, one-party US system, care about power: period.

The entire political spectrum has slid far to the right over the past 50 years. Democrats are now far right, Republicans are off the charts – because both are corporatist parties now: they support the merger of business and the state, which Mussolini called corporatism: which, he said, is the proper term for fascism.

Dems are neoliberal fascists. Revolticans are neoconservative fascists. Any questions?

JTR,

March 17, 2020

Media Analysis & Research 101: Assessing Sources

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , on March 17, 2020 by jtoddring

“Believe nothing, no matter where you read it, or who said it, no matter if I have said it, unless it agrees with your own reason and your own common sense.”
– the Buddha

~ * ~
People need to learn how to evaluate sources. For example, the New England Journal of Medicine is a somewhat reliable source of information on health. Facebook chat groups are not. Better still, generally speaking, are Andrew Weil and GreenMedInfo, for science-based health information that is not based on hysteria, fads, corporate manipulations, marketing or whitewash, government disinformation, or out-dated models, information and ideas. Remember, no one is infallible. Question ALL sources.
*
In terms of media, CNN, MSNBC, Fox, the New York Times, the Washington Post, the BBC, CBC, and the establishment media in general, are simply not reliable. And that is an extraordinarily mild way to put it.
*
They are unreliable at best. More generally, they parade lies, half-truths and illusions (as Thomas Jefferson described the media of his time, and it has not changed since) and market this as “the news”, or informed commentary and analysis.
*
It’s not news. It’s propaganda. Read Chomsky: Necessary Illusions. Or just look beneath the surface, question, and look to the actual facts – do some fact-checking.
*
Go to multiple sources. See what other people are saying – people outside of your clique or milieu included. And venture beyond the establishment media.
*
80% of the major media in the world is now controlled by six corporations. This is not “news”. It is an echo-chamber of disinformation narratives, spun by the ruling elite, for the benefit of the ruling elite.
*
Question everything.
*
Question what your family, friends, clergy, teachers, professors, and neighbours believe, and question what you believe, and what you assume to be true.
*
Question every assumed fact, and every assumed truth, every authority and every source. Then, piece by piece, glimmers of truth will appear, and slowly become clarified. Slowly, the fog will part. But only if you question; and dig for the truth.
*
And when you find one good source, that leads to an explosion of new information, new perspectives, and new ideas, which leads to other new sources, and more information, new perspectives and new ideas.
*
But remember, the new wonderful source may be wonderful only for a short while – until you strip away more layers of illusion yet.
*
The Huffington Post, for example, may seem like a wonderful improvement over CNN, MSNBC or Fox, and maybe it is, at times. But that is a pretty abysmally low standard to beat. That’s like winning a contest in integrity with sewer rats, and strutting around bragging about it.
*
When you begin to see deeply held illusions that are pervasively held at that source as well, and deeply held cognitive bias, deeply skewed “reporting” that omits major facts and major elements of the story, and worse, adopts the greater part of the standard official narrative that is being put out by the echo-chamber of the major corporate-state media, then you might come to realize that the Huff and Puff is only marginally better than the big corporate news empires, and only by a very slim margin at that.
*
Keep digging.
*
Where to begin? Start with Chomsky, Necessary Illusions: Thought Control In Democratic Societies. It’s a book, also available in audio, and I think the grand old dissident may have made it available free online. That is essential reading. Then look to John Pilger: one of the few honest, or even, real journalists left in the world, as we move into a Brave New World that would make Orwell shudder, as the new global corporate fascist empire takes hold.
*
Between Pilger and Chomsky, you will have an excellent head start. And you don’t have to agree with them on everything. Just listen to what they have to say.
*
Above all, think for yourself – and question everything.
*
JTR,
March 17, 2020
*
(Now, if only WordPress would stop being buggy – which it usually is not – and let me format my writing without use of stars to separate paragraphs! Techno-savvy I am not…)
And Happy St. Patty’s Day! I’m going for brunch with my boy. And remember what Public Enemy said: “Don’t believe the hype.”
*
Post-Script:

Want to know what’s happening? Listen to John Pilger and Gerald Celente. What to understand the deeper patterns and big picture? Listen to Chomsky. Between Pilger, Celente and Chomsky you will understand the world very well. No one is infallible, but they’re 99% right, 99% of the time.

#Coronavirus.hype=fascist.machinations

 

Further reading – big picture analysis:

Noam Chomsky, Necessary Illusions: Thought Control In Democratic Societies,
Year 501: The Conquest Continues,
Class Warfare, and
Requiem For The American Dream: The Principles Of Concentration Of Wealth & Power
George Orwell, 1984
Aldous Huxley, Brave New World, and Brave New World Revisited
Yevgeny Zamyatin, We
Jack London, Iron Heel
Naomi Klein, The Shock Doctrine
David C. Korten, When Corporations Rule The World
Susan George, Shadow Sovereigns
John Pilger, The New Rulers Of The World
John Perkins, A Game As Old As Empire, and
The New Confessions Of An Economic Hitman
C. Wright Mills, The Power Elite
Peter Phillips, Giants: The Global Power Elite
Murray Bookchin, The Ecology of Freedom
Erich Fromm, Escape From Freedom
Bertrand Russell, Roads To Freedom
Joanna Macy, World As Lover, World As Self
Ronald Wright, A Short History Of Progress

Political Philosophy 101: Democracy vs Elite Rule

Posted in democracy, elite, empire, empowerment, end-game, fascism, freedom, neo-feudalism, neocon, neoconservatism, neoliberalism, people's movements, philosophy, police state, political economy, political philosophy, political theory, politics, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , on March 17, 2020 by jtoddring

Use anything and anyone to gain and maintain power. That is the Machiavellian philosophy which rules the minds of the power elite, both East and West, as Howard Zinn has indicated as well. Public health, human well-being, conscience, principles, morals, freedom, democracy, other high ideals, have nothing to do with it.

We are not preschoolers. Let us not take the attitude of preschoolers.

Most people, the great majority, as Chomsky has said, “have basically decent impulses”. The power elite, however, have gained, and maintain their power, generally speaking, and with few exceptions, by abandoning all morals, (see the text of NSC-68, for example) and becoming, by and large, sociopaths. We must resist them, and dethrone them. Democracy is vastly preferable to fascism, to be sure; but fascism is what we will have if the people do not question more, and take their democracy back. And the hour is late.

JTR,

March 17, 2020

 

Further reading – big picture analysis:

Noam Chomsky, Necessary Illusions: Thought Control In Democratic Societies,
Year 501: The Conquest Continues,
Class Warfare,
and
Requiem For The American Dream: The Principles Of Concentration Of Wealth & Power
George Orwell, 1984
Aldous Huxley, Brave New World, and Brave New World Revisited
Yevgeny Zamyatin, We
Jack London, Iron Heel
Naomi Klein, The Shock Doctrine
David C. Korten, When Corporations Rule The World
Susan George, Shadow Sovereigns
John Pilger, The New Rulers Of The World
John Perkins, A Game As Old As Empire, and
The New Confessions Of An Economic Hitman
C. Wright Mills, The Power Elite
Peter Phillips, Giants: The Global Power Elite
Murray Bookchin, The Ecology of Freedom
Erich Fromm, Escape From Freedom
Bertrand Russell, Roads To Freedom
Joanna Macy, World As Lover, World As Self
Ronald Wright, A Short History Of Progress

 

“Alternative Media” Failure

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , on March 17, 2020 by jtoddring

To the “alternative” media, I would say this – as well as to the readers, who need to be more critical, not just of the major media, but to supposed alternatives, as well.

I would not play into the fear-mongering of the neoliberal fascists – who control most major media, as well as most governments, the IMF, ECB, Fed, OECD, WTO, WHO, CDC, Davos, Big Oil, Big Pharma, (to name a few power centres) along with the military industrial security complex, and the banking and “intelligence” cartels.

The neoliberal fascists are far more slick and polished, far better at PR and disguises, propaganda and public manipulations, and more in line with Huxley’s dark vision of a more subtle, scientific fascism; compared to the neoconservative fascists, such as Bush I, II, Cheney, and the Trump administration, who are more overt, more obvious, and less insidious – but no more dangerous.

The neoliberal fascists are every bit as dangerous as the neoconservative fascists surrounding Trump – and they seem intent on turning the coronavirus into a dress rehearsal for fascism.

Playing into the “pandemic” hysteria narrative is therefore unwise and extraordinarily dangerous. The virus could turn out to be more dangerous than present figures indicate, but at present, bathtub drownings and car accidents are much bigger problems, quite literally, not to mention the common flu – or hunger, poverty, obesity, poor diets, and war. But a fascist “response” to an exaggerated and hyped “crisis” – a manufactured crisis – is a very real and present danger.

See Trends Research for another perspective, and a clearer one, I would say. But alternative media getting propagandized themselves, and repeating the official narrative on major issues, is not surprising: most of the “alternative media” blew it on most if not all litmus test big stories of the past decade – the CIA/State Department coup in Ukraine, for example, and the geopolitics surrounding that event, or Russiagate, or the Cold War that followed.

The alternative media needs to step up its game. Playing into the hands of the two wings of the on-going, bipartisan neoliberal/neoconservative fascist coup, is not intelligent reporting or commentary. You are being played.

Thoughtful readers need to question everything – including their favourite media sources.

I am sounding a warning here, by the way, not taking an inventory of current alternative media performance on this or any other issue. It is a warning call, not a report card. I don’t follow the alternative media, as with the major media, enough for a detailed assessment of the present state of the former. The latter is, of course, a tragic, sick joke. The former dances between thoughtful relevance, and being an unwitting tool of self-serving elite powers.

JTR,
March 17, 2020

 

Further reading – big picture analysis:

Noam Chomsky, Necessary Illusions: Thought Control In Democratic Societies,
Year 501: The Conquest Continues,
Class Warfare,
and
Requiem For The American Dream: The Principles Of Concentration Of Wealth & Power
George Orwell, 1984
Aldous Huxley, Brave New World, and Brave New World Revisited
Yevgeny Zamyatin, We
Jack London, Iron Heel
Naomi Klein, The Shock Doctrine
David C. Korten, When Corporations Rule The World
Susan George, Shadow Sovereigns
John Pilger, The New Rulers Of The World
John Perkins, A Game As Old As Empire, and
The New Confessions Of An Economic Hitman
C. Wright Mills, The Power Elite
Peter Phillips, Giants: The Global Power Elite
Murray Bookchin, The Ecology of Freedom
Erich Fromm, Escape From Freedom
Bertrand Russell, Roads To Freedom
Joanna Macy, World As Lover, World As Self
Ronald Wright, A Short History Of Progress

 

Turn Off The Propaganda Machine

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , on March 17, 2020 by jtoddring
This week’s cover story of the world’s leading trend analysis institute: very fitting, dead on the money, as usual. As I keep saying, turn off the state and corporate “news”. It’s not news. It’s 80% propaganda, 19% filler and fluff, and 1% useful information. Turn it off. Look for better, more reliable sources of information, news and analysis, like Trends Journal.
If you followed just a handful of serious analysts, journalists and thinkers – such as Gerald Celente, John Pilger, Caitlin Johnstone, Noam Chomsky, Chris Hedges, Naomi Klein and Peter Dale Scott, for example – you would be vastly better informed than if you watched or read the corporate or state “news” all day long, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
There is simply no comparison. By following a few serious journalists and analysts, you will have a very good understanding of what is going on. By following the major media, you will be systematically deceived, manipulated, indoctrinated, propagandized, misinformed and distracted, and your mind will be so addled, you will be effectively useless to the world, because you have no idea what is really going on – or worse, you will be part of the problem.
Turn it off. Change the channel. Look vastly more reliable – not infallible, but incomparably more reliable – sources of news and analysis, such as the New Internationalist, CounterPunch, Global Research, Trends Journal, and other, serious sources of news and commentary – and turn off the propaganda machine. It cannot be said strongly enough, or often enough.
Just say no to Big Brother. In fact, just tell the new corporate oligarchy – and its propaganda-media-infotainment network which is the mass indoctrination and mass distraction machine – to fuck off.
Pardon my language, but enough is enough. Turn it off.
JTR,
March 17, 2020

Further reading – big picture analysis:

Noam Chomsky, Necessary Illusions: Thought Control In Democratic Societies,
Year 501: The Conquest Continues,
Class Warfare,
and
Requiem For The American Dream: The Principles Of Concentration Of Wealth & Power
George Orwell, 1984
Aldous Huxley, Brave New World, and Brave New World Revisited
Yevgeny Zamyatin, We
Jack London, Iron Heel
Naomi Klein, The Shock Doctrine
David C. Korten, When Corporations Rule The World
Susan George, Shadow Sovereigns
John Pilger, The New Rulers Of The World
John Perkins, A Game As Old As Empire, and
The New Confessions Of An Economic Hitman
C. Wright Mills, The Power Elite
Peter Phillips, Giants: The Global Power Elite
Murray Bookchin, The Ecology of Freedom
Erich Fromm, Escape From Freedom
Bertrand Russell, Roads To Freedom
Joanna Macy, World As Lover, World As Self
Ronald Wright, A Short History Of Progress

 

 

Coronavirus: Facts, Anyone?

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on March 17, 2020 by jtoddring

 

Perspective is helpful, and critical. Panic is not.

Consider the figures:

 

Japan:

Just under 5,000 deaths per year from bathtub drownings;

just over 5,000 deaths per year from traffic accidents;

27 deaths from coronavirus, as of March 16

Italy:

3,300 deaths from traffic accidents per year

2,158 deaths from coronavirus as of March 16

US:

40,000 deaths per year from traffic accidents;

77 deaths from coronavirus, as of March 16

and,

200,000 deaths per year from pharmaceuticals taken correctly, and prescribed correctly, according to the US government’s own figures

Are we banning cars? That would be more rational (though of course we would need a five to ten year phase out while building mass transit infrastructure, to end the car dependency and addiction). Are we concerned with mass deaths due to the extreme over-use of unsafe pharmaceuticals? That would be rational. Panic and draconian measures over the coronavirus are not rational – these *responses to the virus*, are extremely dangerous, however.

But few people care about facts in a time of mass hysteria.

Moreover, in China, the “pandemic” is winding down, and essentially over.

80,880 were infected; 3,213 died – overwhelmingly the very old and immune-compromised (about 0.0003% of the population of the country – vastly fewer deaths than those caused by motor vehicle accidents, pollution, or the common flu); 67,819 have recovered.

But while the “pandemic” is winding down in China, in the West the panic and draconian measures are just winding up. Now that is something to be worried about.

Wash your hands, eat your vegetables, take vitamin C – and question everything: especially the media and the government.

Then again, if the US government was truly serious about preventing human suffering and death, it would stop slaughtering people on a daily basis across the Middle East for oil.

This, by the way, is not “anti-Americanism” – it’s anti-murder. It’s anti-war, anti-imperialism, and anti-murder. If Washington is concerned about human health and human suffering, the first step would be to stop practicing mass murder for oil and other resources.

And if Canada, or the Canadian government, was truly serious about protecting human life, it would cease to be the biggest per capita arms dealer in the world, selling weapons to murderous governments such as the US and Saudi Arabia.

Neither of them is at all serious about protecting human life, or they would stop the slaughter they are neck deep in blood engaged in.

The lies must end now. War, poverty, obesity, poor diets, car accidents, climate change and pollution, are all vastly bigger dangers, and vastly bigger killers, than the latest virus. Even the common flu is 100 times more dangerous and more lethal. (650,000 annual death toll globally from the common flu, compared to just over 7,000 for the coronavirus, to date.)

End the madness. Question everything. And let’s start dealing with the real world, and the really big problems we face: such as poverty, obesity, unhealthy diets, pollution, war, climate change, and yes, the very clear and present danger, and drift toward, fascism.

How deep in denial are the majority? That denial, on many levels, and with regard to many serious, urgent problems and truly grave dangers, is the biggest threat of all.

Furthermore, if the US government was truly concerned about human health, it would immediately create a universal public health care system, like the rest of the civilized world already has. Over a trillion dollars a year is spent on war, and the military-industrial-security complex – the new police state. But there is no money for public health care? You are liars.

And in Canada, if the fuzzy-bear faux liberal government truly cared about human health, they would stop subsidizing the fossil fuel industry at $20 billion a year, so they can destroy the planet faster, and instead fully fund health care – which is in nation-wide crisis due to chronic under-funding, and decades of funding cuts.

Again: they are both lairs – Trudeau and Trump. And they are both extremely dangerous – due to their staunch, planet-destroying allegiance to the fossil fuel industry, militarism, and the growing police state: far more dangerous than the coronavirus, or any other infectious disease.

What are the greatest dangers? They are, unquestionably, the lies, illusions, and the denial, which are the nearly universal norm.

The latest virus does not remotely compare to these.

JTR,

March 16, 2020

EXTREMELY IMPORTANT – WATCH NOW

Posted in Uncategorized with tags on March 17, 2020 by jtoddring

Normally I only post articles on my blog that I write. On rare occasions – twice so far, I believe – I have shared someone else’s video. This is critical viewing.

WATCH THIS – EXTREMELY IMPORTANT:

Whether this is a warm-up, a dry-run, or the main event, the following short video will remain extremely important. Please watch immediately:

Celente: Police State Emerging Now        https://youtu.be/5aLiEVbNTUs

JTR,
March 16, 2020

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