Archive for health

Coronavirus & Common Sense

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

“We were once distressed by crimes: now, by laws”, wrote Tacitus.

How relevant is that today? Extremely so; but the sheep are trained not to think; and see, therefore, only what they are told to see – which, they obediently do.

Orwell would shudder in horror.

Still no one can think, question, or do basic math? Two million “confirmed” cases globally now of coronavirus, it is reported. No testing is required to verfiy this. Suspicion is proof, as in the dark ages.

But even if we took the figures as accurate, which is highly doubtful, they should not be alarming if the slightest thought or investigation is done.

Stanford professors of epdemiology assert that coronavirus mortality has been exaggerated by several orders of magnitude. It has been claimed to be as high as 19% or more. Professors in the field state it is more likely in the range of 0.01-0.1%. That puts it on the level of the annual common flu. That explains why it is dangerous only to the very old and the very ill.

Voluntary self-quarantine by the very old and very ill may be reasonable. Mass quarantine of the healthy is not only utterly unjustified, it is also a socio-economic and public health disaster, as well as a prelude to fascism.

(Homer Simpson would say, “Doh!” here. We should, too.)

Any death is tragic, but to accept the standard narrative, sown by the six corporations who control 80% of the major media globally, along with the governments and WHO, both of which have also been taken over by the corporate oligarchy, is to succumb to irrationality and hysteria.

This is not the Bubonic Plague – but we are reacting to it as if it is even worse. “Unprecedented!” Yes, what is unprecedented, or at least not seen since the dark ages, is the level of mass insanity, hysteria, fear and delusion.

But, despite all that, let’s imagine two million cases is not exaggerated, though that is doubtful, since, without testing, which has not been required to “confirm” cases, infections or deaths by the flu can easily be mistaken for coronavirus, and under conditions of manufactured panic and hysteria, most certainly routinely are.

Let’s imagine a 20% mortality rate, which is also certainly exaggerated, likely by a factor of 100 to 1,000, as Stanford professors assert.

Simple math: 20% of two million is 400,000. Add the previous total deaths globally of just over 100,000, and you have a total of just above 500,000. Annual death toll from the flu is 200,000-700,000. So that would put coronavirus on par with a typical year for the flu.

That explains why the mortality rate for Europe did not rise this year, but has been lower so far, compared to the three previous years: because the coronavirus shows no signs yet of being any more dangerous than the common flu.

Remember, these numbers are based on what are almost certainly exaggerated figures in terms of “confirmed cases” of infections and deaths by coronavirus, as well as mortality rates, which are likely exaggerated 100-1,000 fold.

Meanwhile, no one questions whether the WHO is credible, or perhaps corruptible? It is unthinkable.

No one checks the facts to find out that yes, indeed, the WHO, like most Western governments, has been captured by Big Pharma, along with the 2,000 or so corporate oligarchs of Davos, who now effectively rule the world.

The WHO is uncorruptible? It could never lie? We assume it is trustworthy, even when the figures don’t add up?

We assume governments never lie? They never take advantage of a crisis to advance vested interests? Does anyone remember the Gulf of Tonkin? Three million people were killed in South-East Asia, based on a lie.

Has anyone heard of Operation Northwoods? Event 201? The Rockefeller Foundation’s “Lock Step” plan?

I am not saying the virus is a bioweapon or that it is fake. I am saying that governments and elites have planned and carried out dark actions many times in the past. To assume governments are acting now solely out of deep concern for public health, does not fit the facts of the record of their actions over the past years and decades. To assume they cannot lie, and could never exploit a crisis for certain vested interests, would be even more remarkably naive.

Naiveté now would be foolish in the extreme.

The present crisis is a four-fold boon to the Western and Eastern oligarchs, and they are exloiting it for all it’s worth.

1. Distract the people from vastly bigger issues – such as, most centrally, the corruption and criminality of the oligarchs and the resulting growing popular discontent; along with war, empire, inequality, erosion of democracy, environmental emergency, poverty…. (The list is long.)

2. Divide and conquer: sow fear, division, “social distancing” and mass house arrest; and reap greater and more consolidated power.

3. Economic warfare: the Davos oligarchs vs the 99.9%. Simple rape and pillage – intensified 1,000-fold above routine levels.

4. Consolidate the power of the ruling oligarchs, both in the West and in China, by creating hysteria in order to justify a police state.

Anyone who still, 10 weeks into the “new Pearl Harbor type event”, remains unquestioningly accepting of the standard narrative, and the fascist regime it legitimizes and rationalizes, really should step back, and take a long, hard look at the facts, before crying out more for their chains to be securely fastened, and their legs, and minds, shackled in place – for our own good, of course.

JTR,

April 17, 2020

Social Psychology & Meditation On Death

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 12, 2020 by jtoddring

“We are born for action…I want us to be doing things…I want Death to find me planting my cabbages, neither worrying about it nor my unfinished gardening.”

   – Michel de Montaigne

How perfect is that sentiment and that view, expressed here by the great French philosopher of the Renaissance! And hilarious! Montaigne sounds like Thoreau, with his Earthy wisdom…or a Zen master…or Chuang Tzu! But that is not how most people live. And there’s the rub. That is the problem.

Montaigne said of fear, “There is no emotion which more readily ravishes our judgement.” That would seem to be the best explanation of our current mass social psychology: the great majority, including most of the otherwise thoughtful, intelligent, and emminently sane, are temporarily incapable of rational thought, due to panic and intense fear. That is to say, temporary insanity has descended upon them.

Montaigne echoes all the sages: when you meditate on death, you can face your mortality, and hence, conquer the fear of death; and when you conquer the fear of death, you thereby conquer all fear of life – and it is then only that we begin to truly live.

“To practise death is to practise freedom. The man who has learned how to die has unlearned how to be a slave.” – Michel de Montaigne

Yet, the great majority hide from death, and thus hide from life – and their secret fear makes them easily misled, easily manipulated, easily ensnared and enslaved, easily irrational and confused, as well as perpetually filled with a secret, unconscious, perpetual anxiety and fear, no matter how cleverly masked or disguised.

“No wonder that they often get caught in a trap. You can frighten such people simply by mentioning death… And then, in the midst of pain and terror, God only knows what shape their good judgement kneeds into!”

– Michel de Montaigne

JTR,

April 12, 2020

Further Reading:

The Essays of Montaigne: Of Fear; and, To Philosophize Is To Learn How To Die

Ecclesiastes, Chapter 3: 1-2, 17-20, Chapter 4: 5-6, 13

Walden, and On Civil Disobedience – Henry David Thoreau

The Divinity School Address – Ralph Waldo Emerson

The Tibetan Book of Living and Dying – Soygal Rinpoche

Introducing Buddha – Jane Hope

Chuang Tsu – Jane English translation

The Tao Te Ching – Jane English translation (no others compare)

Tao: The Watercourse Way – Alan Watts

The Way of Zen – Alan Watts

The Book – Alan Watts

World As Lover, World As Self – Joanna Macy

Dialogues With Scientists And Mystics – Renee Weber

Dreamtime and Inner Space – Holgar Kalweit

Choosing Reality – Alan Wallace

The Hero With A Thousand Faces – Joseph Campbell

The Perennial Philosophy – Aldous Huxley

What Survives? – Gary Doore

Escape From Freedom – Erich Fromm

Brave New World, and, Brave New World Revisited – Aldous Huxley

 

Meditations For Difficult Times

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , on April 4, 2020 by jtoddring

 

What do you do when the world has gone insane? Well, you stay calm, and keep working for justice, peace, democracy, ecological balance, and freedom. You also have to stay well. That does not mean unthinkingly obeying irrational fascist orders. It does mean managing stress, eating well, getting exercise, sunshine and fresh air, and time in nature, as much as possible under the circumstances. Yoga, pranayama, tai chi, chi gong, saunas and meditation are extremely helpful, too. 

And sometimes, to me at least, you need to sit in a comfortable chair, preferably in a quiet place, with a cup of tea, and read a good book on philosophy or history (or both, such as Toulmin’s Cosmopolis, which I am reading now).

Then watch Terminator III. 

If we can confront our mortality, and the mortality of the world, if we can meditate on death so as to fully realize it is a reality, and not just a vicious rumour or an urban legend – and something that happens to us all, and not just to other people – then we can live without fear, and we can act without fear; we can therefore be far more clear of mind; we can be far more empowered, and far more effective; and moreover, we can more fully and truly live.

You confront your fear. Then your fear has less and less power. Then you can act from calm, clear, confidence; from peace, and not from panic, anger, or anxiety. Then the world, and our lives, become better. Not before.

In fear mode, we are pawns in a game, easily manipulated, easily deceived. In fear mode, it is the blind leading the blind, and they will all fall in a ditch, or worse.

First, face your fear. The root fear is death. Face that, and you conquer all fear. Then you can act with clarity, confidence, and peace – and act sensibly, and not foolishly.

Not before. Not before.

JTR,

April 4, 2020

Hurray For the Daft! (That’s Us)

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 3, 2020 by jtoddring
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(My apologies for the strange formatting again – WordPress gets glitchy on me and refuses paragraph spacing, forcing me to use awkward-looking stars. Bear with me.)
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The left is loudly proclaiming, amidst the coronavirus (largely manufactured disaster capitalism) disaster: bail-outs for the people not the corporate elite, health care for all – and a green new deal!
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Yes, that is entirely sensible. But what about civil liberties for all, basic constitutional law, and functioning democracy, all of which requires a functioning resistance to the clear and present, unfolding imposition of neoliberal fascism, as a solution for a vastly exaggerated health crisis – fascist measures which are not likely to be reversed after the crisis has passed.
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Without those three things – civil liberties for all, basic constitutional law, and functioning democracy – all your wishes and demands – for universal health care, aid to the people and not just big business and the rich, and a green energy infrastructure and jobs program – are just pipe dreams.
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With real democracy these things and more are all possible. Without standing up for these three essentials, they are nothing but that – pipe dreams.
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But to ask the left (or “progressives”) for presence of mind is something that is too much to ask, it seems. They can quote Marx, but they really need to be quoting Huxley, Orwell, or Thomas Jefferson right now – and they seem to realize it not, but are oblivious.
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It is well-documented that US and other Western elites have armed, trained, funded, used, and colluded with Islamic terrorists for murderous geopolitical and imperial objectives for decades. There is no question that Western elites have for decades, and repeatedly, lied to the people, falsified evidence, colluded with terrorists, and engaged in mass murder for oil and other resources, while imposing a kind of global economic apartheid and predatory economic imperialism upon the world, resulting, among other things, in the on-going deaths of 20,000 children per day due to hunger, in a world that produces enough food for all. Yet the people broadly, and the left in particular, are quite cheerfully willing to believe that the same Western elite are telling the truth now, while they use the present coronavirus crisis to usher in literally fascist measures, and to believe that they have only a deep and abiding concern for human health as their motivation. Clearly the people, including the left, have lost all capacity for rational thought, and have temporarily lost their minds.

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We need a little more Sun Tzu, and a little less Homer Simpson here, people. Think! Wake up! Question!
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If this doesn’t soon change, we are doomed to slavery under a corporate-run, technocratic, neo-feudal Orwellian order which I and others have warned about for decades – and it will not be pretty, I assure you, but will make COVID-19(84) look like a child’s picnic.
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Unless, of course, this is just the warm-up, the prelude to the final putsch: in which case, the people are being conditioned to accept “emergency” fascist measures, so that whenever the elite feel the need, they can flick the switch again – and this time, people disappear for good, and en mass (think Jakarta, or labour camps) – dissidents, activists, anybody who gets in the way or opposes the elite’s rule in any way. And nobody questions enough to stop it, until it is too late. If that is what we are experiencing, it is perhaps even more dangerous.
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In any event, complacently and meekly, slavishly, obediently, foolishly allowing our civil liberties to be stripped away, while sweeping, literally fascist powers are granted to, or usurped by, elites both West and East, is terrifyingly dangerous in the extreme.
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We should not be so foolish as to be complacent about this. How much can that be emphasized? Not possibly enough.
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JTR,
April 3, 2020
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Post-Script:
Naomi Klein wrote the book that best describes what we have been experiencing since 9/11, with the “war on terror”, the “regime change” wars that resulted, and the war on democracy which it represented, and the rise of disaster capitalism – The Shock Doctrine: the book that still, to my mind, best describes what is happening right now. We need to make sense of this, in the most obvious sort of way. How is this not obvious that it is another power grab? A real event, hyped to the maximum degree possible, is being exploited by power hungry elites in the West, as in the East. This is not complicated to understand.
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PSII: Karl Marx, as well as being brilliant (as a sociologist, though a daft philosopher and a terrible political theorist), was fiery as well. He managed to piss off virtually the entire left of Europe. But a fiery spirit goes with the left, generally speaking. Look at Tommy Douglas, or Martin Luther King Jr. These guys were not pussy cats. Fiery is what we need. So, sorry if I ruffle feathers at times. It is not my intention, but it is sometimes unavoidable. Truth comes first. Always.

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

Cancer Treatments and Cures – Natural and Conventional: An Overview

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 21, 2016 by jtoddring

 

Here’s a thorny, delicate, controversial subject – but then again, when have I ever been known to shy away from such things? Peoples’ lives and well-being are at stake. We cannot afford to be tepid, mousey or weak-minded.

According to a study published in the prestigious New England Journal of Medicine, chemotherapy was found to be *partially* effective in less than 3% of cases. So why is it still used? A combination of ignorance and greed are the only explanations.

Chemotherapy is toxic, destroys the immune system, and is largely ineffective in treating cancer. It is used out of ignorance, on the part of doctors, and out of sociopathic greed on the part of pharmaceutical companies.

Surgery, the other standard treatment for cancer, is also fraught with risks and negative side effects – such as colostomy bags or loss of breasts – and rarely removes all of the cancer: which is why chemotherapy is always used in conjunction with surgery.

So conventional medicine takes two drastic, and dangerous methods to confront cancer, neither of which are very effective, and says that that is the best we can do. Well, it is not.

Herbal medicine, including the well-proven Essiac formula, along with dietary changes – principally, eliminating meat, dairy, processed foods and sugar – in conjunction with beta glucans (found naturally in shitake mushrooms), has been shown repeatedly to have a much higher success rate in treating cancer, and far more safely.

Read, and do your own research before you bow down to the gods in white coats, and the pig-headed, out-moded, and profit-driven medical establishment.

Generally speaking, integrative medicine is the way of the future, but in some certain areas, and at some times, the best recourse is either conventional or natural treatments on their own. If you break your leg skiing, you should go to a hospital and get the conventional treatment. If you have a car accident, and have had physical trauma, lesions, broken bones, etc, then you should go to the hospital for conventional treatment (and take arnica and healthy foods to speed healing, I would recommend.) If you have cancer, the case may not be so clear cut. The evidence is abundantly clear to me, but each person should have the freedom to decide for him or herself what course of health care they will take. All I urge, is that you research before you decide, and think for yourself. It’s your body and your health – it’s your choice. Just don’t be bullied into anything you don’t feel comfortable with – it’s your life.

JTR,
January 21, 2016

 

Standard disclaimer:

Think for yourself. Do your own research. Oh yes, and consult a health professional (of your own careful choosing) before taking any conventional or natural medicine or course of treatment. This article is not meant to replace the advice of your health care professional, naturally.

http://www.realfarmacy.com/70-year-old-man-beat-late-stage-terminal-colon-cancer-naturally/

ISIS and Terrorism – A Reality Check

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 3, 2015 by jtoddring

“The responsibility of intellectuals is to speak the truth and expose lies.”

– Noam Chomsky

“In times of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act.”

– George Orwell

According to a February 2015 Gallup poll, a majority of Americans consider the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant — abbreviated as ISIS or ISIL — and the international terrorism they support to be the greatest threat to the United States’ vital interests.

This is really quite amazing, when you think about it. Not global warming, not record droughts and crop failure, not de-industrialization, massive and rising unemployment and poverty, soaring inequality and the demolition and razing of the middle class, not catastrophic ecological destruction, not the poisoning of our food, air, water, soil, our bodies and children, not disastrous “trade” deals (read, corporate rights deals), not a ravenous and criminal Wall Street cabal that rules the nation and is pillaging and plundering the middle class and the poor – no, it’s a few armed thugs half a world away, with no tanks, no battle ships, no air force, no ICBMs, and the military power of one ten thousandth, at best, of that of the US, which is the greatest threat to “America’s vital interests.”

Holy delusional.

Former National Security Adviser, and chief intellectual and geopolitical strategist in residence to the Western elite, Zbigniew Brzezinski, recently scoffed at such delusions, and said, “What are they going to do, swim here?” But the hysteria has been manufactured, and fear is a powerful weapon, as the BBC documentary, The Power of Nightmares, clearly showed, and Orwell and other observers have also recognized and noted.

The “war on terror” is a campaign that is being used to justify wars over oil, and geopolitical power and empire abroad, and a full frontal assault on democracy, freedom and civil liberties at home, in order silence the people, and to protect and consolidate the powers and the interests of the currently ruling corporate elite. It has nothing to do with fighting terrorism.

It’s time we got real. We are being lied to.

The US wants to impose a regime change in Syria – and that is flatly in defiance of international law, and is defined as a war crime under international law. As Chomsky said, if the Nuremberg trials were held today, every US president since WWII would be hanged for war crimes – and the war crimes continue to this day. And they are war crimes, regardless of how they may be justified.

Because the US is trying to topple the Assad government in Syria, the CIA has been arming, funding and training terrorist groups in that country – just as it did in Libya, Afghanistan and other countries. So we’re fighting terrorism by arming terrorists. That makes sense.

And why does the US want to topple the Assad government? Is it because Assad heads a brutal regime? No – the US was friends and allies with Saddam Husein when it suited their interests, even though Saddam headed an even more brutal regime.

Saddam was targeted for regime change only when he stopped obeying orders from Washington. The same has happened many times, and always for the same reasons: brutal regimes are fine – so long as they cooperate with the masters in Washington; and when they don’t, they are either brought under control, or taken out: either through bribery, economic and financial extortion, or by covert, or overt use of violent force.

And why does the US want to take out the Assad regime, if it’s not for human rights reasons? For oil, most likely – as with Iraq, Libya, Afghanistan…. There is a proposed Iran-Iraq-Syria gas pipeline that “could radically alter Europe’s energy supplies, diminishing Russia’s fossil fueled prowess in Europe” – and Assad opposes it. So he has to go.

“These strategic concerns [of the US, to control oil and gas in the Middle East], motivated by fear of expanding Iranian influence, impacted Syria primarily in relation to pipeline geopolitics. In 2009 – the same year former French foreign minister Dumas alleges the British began planning operations in Syria – Assad refused to sign a proposed agreement with Qatar that would run a pipeline from the latter’s North field, contiguous with Iran’s South Pars field, through Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Syria and on to Turkey, with a view to supply European markets – albeit crucially bypassing Russia. Assad’s rationale was “to protect the interests of [his] Russian ally, which is Europe’s top supplier of natural gas.”

It is this – the problem of establishing a pliable opposition which the US and its oil allies feel confident will play ball, pipeline-style, in a post-Assad Syria – that will determine the nature of any prospective intervention: not concern for Syrian life.”

– The Guardian, August 30, 2015, Syrian intervention plans fuelled by oil interests, not chemical weapon concerns, by Dr Nafeez Ahmed, executive director of the Institute for Policy Research & Development and author of A User’s Guide to the Crisis of Civilisation: And How to Save It

Now, not only is Syria spiraling further into crisis and chaos, with the US intervention only making matters worse, but it has also generated a refugee crisis in Europe, with refugees pouring out of Syria, and 4.5 million people displaced – a refugee crisis that the US and its allies actively helped to create. All for the sake of oil and gas profits for the US and its allies – and the corporate interests which they serve.

Russia on the other hand, wants to protect the Assad government, because Assad is a Russian ally, and because Assad opposes the pipeline deal which would radically reduce Russia’s fossil fuel super-power status in Europe – which is most likely the real reason Russia just started bombing in Syria, and not because it wants to fight terrorism.

With the US and its allies fighting and bombing in Syria, and Russia now entering the conflict, and bombing in Syria, and for the other team, the US trying to oust Assad, and Russia trying to prop him up, we are now literally faced with the very real threat of an outbreak of WWIII. And all this, for the control of oil and gas money. This is clearly insane.

So the motives are all twisted, when we’re talking about the major players, in both the West and in Russia, and it is the people who are suffering, while the military actions, the bombings and the regime changes simply serve to foster ever greater hatred and ever more terrorism – exactly as the US intelligence services warned they would do.

“Let’s see…. The resort to violence, to war, bombing, and forced regime changes – read, coups – didn’t work, and has instead sown chaos, hatred, further hostilities, greater instability, and more terrorism. So let’s redouble our efforts, and try the same methods again.

As Einstein said, “Repeating the same actions and expecting a different outcome is the very definition of insanity.”

But fighting terrorism and creating peace were never the objectives. It’s about controlling the flow of oil and gas, and the astronomical profits, and power, that derive from it.

The Guardian is quite unreliable in terms of the consistency of its quality of reporting and commentary – sometimes it does a great job, and sometimes a poor one, or even a terrible one – but they got it right here, with regards to Syria and war in the Middle East:

“The 2011 uprisings, it would seem – triggered by a confluence of domestic energy shortages and climate-induced droughts which led to massive food price hikes – came at an opportune moment that was quickly exploited. Leaked emails from the private intelligence firm Stratfor including notes from a meeting with Pentagon officials confirmed US-UK training of Syrian opposition forces since 2011 aimed at eliciting “collapse” of Assad’s regime “from within.”

So what was this unfolding strategy to undermine Syria and Iran all about? According to retired NATO Secretary General Wesley Clark, a memo from the Office of the US Secretary of Defense just a few weeks after 9/11 revealed plans to “attack and destroy the governments in 7 countries in five years”, starting with Iraq and moving on to “Syria, Lebanon, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and Iran.” In a subsequent interview, Clark argues that this strategy is fundamentally about control of the region’s vast oil and gas resources.

Much of the strategy currently at play was candidly described in a 2008 US Army-funded RAND report, Unfolding the Future of the Long War (pdf). The report noted that “the economies of the industrialized states will continue to rely heavily on oil, thus making it a strategically important resource.” As most oil will be produced in the Middle East, the US has “motive for maintaining stability in and good relations with Middle Eastern states”:

“The geographic area of proven oil reserves coincides with the power base of much of the Salafi-jihadist network. This creates a linkage between oil supplies and the long war that is not easily broken or simply characterized… For the foreseeable future, world oil production growth and total output will be dominated by Persian Gulf resources… The region will therefore remain a strategic priority, and this priority will interact strongly with that of prosecuting the long war.”

– The Guardian, August 30, 2015, Syrian intervention plan fueled by oil interests, not chemical weapon concerns

If we are serious about reducing hate, violence, war, conflict and human suffering, then we should, among other things, be racing to get the world off its deadly addiction to fossil fuels, and end the wars over oil, pipelines, and the politics of fossil fuel addiction, and switching as rapidly as possible to clean, renewable energy.

How about diverting half or three-quarters of the obscenely bloated US military budget to massive investments in solar, wind and other renewable energy industries and technologies, and kick-starting the economy and providing millions of jobs in the process?

Nope. Can’t do. The oil and arms corporations require that we continue with business as usual, so that is simply not possible. The wars, therefore, must continue – and the people and the earth be damned.

How about this for a proposal? End the wars in the Middle East, and use the money saved to buy a fully electric Tesla Model S for every home in the United States over the next 20 years. That would cost approximately $5 trillion. By comparison, the wars in the Middle East have cost an estimated $6 trillion – so far. So this is completely feasible.

There are probably better, more effective ways to invest in clean, renewable energy, and to break our addiction to oil and fossil fuels, but this was meant simply to make a point. How about ending the wars and spending the war budget to install solar, wind and geothermal heating, cooling and power systems for every home in America, making them fully off-grid and energy self-reliant, as well as being powered by clean energy? This would cost about the same amount, roughly $5 trillion, and could be done over the next 20 years, if the wars are ended now. That would also cause the economy to soar, and millions of jobs to be created. And this is not even mentioning the lives that would be saved and the suffering averted by ending the bombing and the wars.

By ending the wars, we would do more to halt terrorism – by not participating in it, and not fueling it – than by anything that has been done so far. Certainly the “bomb-em-to-bits” strategy has been a complete disaster, and has only increased terrorism, exactly as US intelligence services said it would do. And the money saved could be used to rebuild the US economy, create full employment, shift the nation to renewable energy, break the dependency on oil and other fossil fuels, and halt our race toward ecological cataclysm and collective suicide.

But we can’t do that, because the oil and arms corporations are making a killing, both literally and figuratively, off our addiction to fossil fuels and war.

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Here are some startling figures to contemplate. Official terrorism – which means, terrorism carried out by official enemies, and not by Washington and its allies in Canada, the UK and France – accounts for roughly 20,000 deaths a year. Meanwhile, over 20,000 children die every day from hunger. Poverty is the far greater killer, but where is our war on poverty? There is lip service, rhetoric, but no serious action, as poverty continues to rise globally, and also in the United States, the richest country in the history of the world.

But even more people now die from over-eating and obesity than from hunger – with millions dying every year from heart disease and stroke alone, primarily due to poor eating habits. But are we launching a war on MacDonalds and fast food? No, we’re fighting ISIS – supposedly – even though the fast food industry kills far more people every year than ISIS could ever dare to dream.

We should be launching major public health campaigns, and anti-poverty campaigns, and stopping the Wall Street war on the middle class and the poor, because the death toll from that, and the toll in terms of human suffering, is vastly greater than that caused by official terrorism, which is positively dwarfed by comparison.

The real terrorists are in Wall Street and Washington, where the financial and conventional bombings are coordinated, and the global looting is orchestrated and carried out. You want to fight terrorism? Start at home, and start with Wall Street.

Please see my recent essay, also on my blog, entitled, Danger and Delusion, from ISIS To Ebola, for a deeper look and some critical perspective on the real dangers that face the United States and the world today. It’s time for a reality check.

We need to remember that the media are overwhelmingly controlled either by corporations or the government. In the US, six corporations control 90% of the media. We should not expect anything other than propaganda, considering these facts.

Fortunately, according to another recent Gallop poll, roughly 40% of the people have virtually no faith left in the media – and the corporate and government controlled media continue to lose credibility, and their audience, at a rapid and accelerating pace.

So while the majority of the people, a slim majority, continue to believe the lies and the propaganda, the tide is changing, and the people are waking up. This is happening none too soon. All we can say is, we had better accelerate the awakening, because the world is in serious peril – and peril, above all, due to the lies and illusions which are being propagated daily, and which need to be cut through, and demolished.

J. Todd Ring,
October 3, 2015

And this just in:

U.S. Military Bombs Doctors Without Borders Hospital, Killing At Least 19.
Doctors Without Borders’ statement suggests more than just collateral damage. The Afghan trauma center “was hit several times during sustained bombing and was very badly damaged.” The hospital reportedly had 105 patients and caretakers, and more than 80 staffers from all over the world.
According to the aid group, U.S. forces continued bombing for 30 minutes after receiving phone calls telling them the hospital was being bombed. “All parties to the conflict, including in Kabul and Washington, were clearly informed of the precise location [GPS Coordinates] of the M.S.F. facilities – hospital, guesthouse, office,” the statement said.
October 3, 2015
http://thinkprogress.org/world/2015/10/03/3708837/doctors-without-borders-bombed/
Who is fighting terrorism? And who are the terrorists? Are we really so certain?

As Chomsky has repeatedly said, the leading terrorist centre in the world is Washington, DC – and global polls show that the great majority of the people around the world agree.

The Need to Oppose All Foreign Intervention in Syria

Noam Chomsky: US, Not Iran, [Nor ISIS] Poses Greatest Threat To World Peace

http://www.democracynow.org/2015/9/22/noam_chomsky_the_united_states_not

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