The Evening Blues - 9-27-22



eb1pt12


The day's news roundup + tonight's musical feature: Tommy Brown

Hey! Good Evening!

This evening's music features r&b singer Tommy Brown. Enjoy!

Tommy Brown - Rock Away My Blues

"True revolution comes from true revulsion; when things get bad enough the kitten will kill the lion."

-- Charles Bukowski


News and Opinion

Chris Hedges: The Return of Fascism

Energy and food bills are soaring. Under the onslaught of inflation and prolonged wage stagnation, wages are in free fall. Billions of dollars are diverted by Western nations at a time of economic crisis and staggering income inequality to fund a proxy war in Ukraine. The liberal class, terrified by the rise of neo-fascism and demagogues such as Donald Trump, have thrown in their lot with discredited and reviled establishment politicians who slavishly do the bidding of the war industry, oligarchs and corporations. The bankruptcy of the liberal class means that those who decry the folly of permanent war and NATO expansion, mercenary trade deals, exploitation of workers by globalization, austerity and neoliberalism come increasingly from the far-right. This right-wing rage, dressed up in the United States as Christian fascism, has already made huge gains in Hungary, Poland, Sweden, Italy, Bulgaria and France and may take power in the Czech Republic, where inflation and rising energy costs have seen the number of Czechs falling below the poverty line double.

By next spring, following a punishing winter of rolling blackouts and months when families struggle to pay for food and heat, what is left of our anemic western democracy could be largely extinguished. Extremism is the political cost of pronounced social inequality and political stagnation. Demagogues, who promise moral and economic renewal, vengeance against phantom enemies and a return to lost glory, rise out of the morass. Hatred and violence, already at the boiling point, are legitimized. A reviled ruling class, and the supposed civility and democratic norms it espouses, are ridiculed. ...

Economic collapse was indispensable to the Nazis’ rise to power. In the 1928 elections in Germany, the Nazi party received less than 3 percent of the vote. Then came the global financial crash of 1929. By early 1932, 40 percent of the German insured workforce, six million people, were unemployed. That same year, the Nazis became the largest political party in the German parliament. The Weimar government, tone deaf and hostage to the big industrialists, prioritized paying bank loans and austerity rather than feeding and employing a desperate population. It foolishly imposed severe restrictions on who was eligible for unemployment insurance. Millions of Germans went hungry. Desperation and rage rippled through the population. Mass rallies, led by a collection of buffoonish Nazis in brown uniforms who would have felt at home at Mar-a-Lago, denounced Jews, Communists, intellectuals, artists and the ruling class, as internal enemies. Hate was their main currency. It sold well. The evisceration of democratic procedures and institutions, however, preceded the Nazis’ ascension to power in 1933. The Reichstag, the German Parliament, was as dysfunctional as the U.S. Congress. The Socialist leader Friedrich Ebert, president from 1919 until 1925, and later Heinrich Brüning, chancellor from 1930 to 1932, relied on Article 48 of the Weimar Constitution to largely rule by decree to bypass the fractious Parliament. Article 48, which granted the president the right in an emergency to issue decrees, was “a trapdoor through which Germany could fall into dictatorship,” historian Benjamin Carter Hett writes.

Article 48 was the Weimar equivalent of the executive orders liberally used by Barack Obama, Donald Trump and Joe Biden, to bypass our own legislative impasses. As in 1930s Germany, our courts — especially the Supreme Court — have been seized by extremists. The press has bifurcated into antagonistic tribes where lies and truth are indistinguishable, and opposing sides are demonized. There is little dialogue or compromise, the twin pillars of a democratic system. The two ruling parties slavishly serve the dictates of the war industry, global corporations and the oligarchy, to which it has given huge tax cuts. It has established the most pervasive and intrusive system of government surveillance in human history. It runs the largest prison system in the world. It has militarized the police. Democrats are as culpable as Republicans.

The step from dysfunctional democracy to full blown fascism was, and will again be, a small one. The hatred for the ruling class, embodied by the establishment Republican and Democratic parties, which have merged into one ruling party, is nearly universal. ... At the heart of the problem is a loss of faith in traditional forms of government and democratic solutions. Fascism in the 1930s succeeded, as Peter Drucker observed, not because people believed its conspiracy theories and lies but in spite of the fact that they saw through them. Fascism thrived in the face of “a hostile press, a hostile radio, a hostile cinema, a hostile church, and a hostile government which untiringly pointed out the Nazi lies, the Nazi inconsistency, the unattainability of their promises, and the dangers and folly of their course.” He added, “nobody would have been a Nazi if rational belief in the Nazi promises had been a prerequisite.” ...

We have seen this movie before.

Nord stream gas pipelines leaks: Fears of sabotage as gas pour into Baltic sea

Glenn Greenwald REACTS To Snowden Russian Citizenship

Putin grants Russian citizenship to US whistleblower Edward Snowden

Vladimir Putin signed a decree on Monday granting Russian citizenship to the US whistleblower Edward Snowden.

Snowden, 39, a former US intelligence contractor, has been living in Russia since 2013 to escape prosecution in the US after leaking secret files, published by the Guardian, that revealed vast domestic and international surveillance operations carried out by the US National Security Agency.

In 2020, Snowden said that he and his then-pregnant wife were applying for Russian citizenship in order not to be separated from their future son in an era of pandemics and closed borders. Russia granted him permanent residency rights the same year, paving the way for him to obtain Russian citizenship.

“After years of separation from our parents, my wife and I have no desire to be separated from our sons,” Snowden, whose name appeared on a list of 72 foreign-born individuals for whom Putin was granting citizenship, said on Monday. “After two years of waiting and nearly ten years of exile, a little stability will make a difference for my family. I pray for privacy for them—and for us all.”

Congress Preps $12 BILLION MORE For Ukraine

Russia Upgrade SMO to Counter Terrorist Operation on Entry of Regions; Putin Talks to Erdogan, MBS

NBC Reporter Tells Truth About War – Gets IMMEDIATELY FIRED!

US senators refuse to let killing of Shireen Abu Akleh drop with Israel

Israel has declared the case closed. The US state department has done its best to duck difficult questions. But leading members of the US Congress are refusing to drop demands for a proper accounting of the death of the Palestinian American journalist, Shireen Abu Akleh, four months ago.

The longest-serving member of the US Senate, Patrick Leahy, recently upped the ante by warning that Israel’s failure to fully explain the Al-Jazeera reporter’s killing could jeopardize America’s huge military aid to the Jewish state under a law he sponsored 25 years ago cutting weapons supplies to countries that abuse human rights.

Nearly half of the Democratic members of the Senate have signed a letter calling into question Israel’s claim that Abu Akleh was accidentally shot by a soldier. The letter suggests she may have been targeted because she was a journalist.

The Biden administration is also facing a flurry of legislative amendments and letters from members of Congress demanding that the state department reveal what it knows about Abu Akleh’s death and that the FBI launch an independent investigation.

Few think there is much prospect of the US actually cutting its $3.8bn a year in military aid to Israel in the near future, but it is politically significant that so many senior Democrats have signed on to publicly challenge Israel, which has frequently been able to count on solid bipartisan support in America.

Although criticism has focused on Abu Akleh’s death, the demands for accountability come as Israeli killings of Palestinians have escalated while Jewish settlers in the West Bank appear to have been given free rein at times to attack Palestinians and take over their land.

Italy’s Salvini vows far-right alliance will last as Meloni heads for power

Matteo Salvini, the leader of Italy’s far-right League, has promised that his alliance with Giorgia Meloni’s Brothers of Italy will deliver a long-lasting government, as Italians begin to digest the outcome of an election that will bring about the country’s most rightwing government since the end of the second world war.

Final results gave the coalition control of both houses of parliament with 44% of the vote and confirmed a swing in the balance of power in the Italian far right towards Meloni as her party made spectacular gains in the League’s northern strongholds of Veneto and Friuli Venezia Giulia.

Meloni is expected to be given a mandate from the president, Sergio Mattarella, to form a government after 13 October, meaning she could take office by the end of next month.

Bolsonaro: Last Week Tonight with John Oliver

Global Market CHAOS As Every Currency FALLS Against Dollar

Pound comes under new pressure after Bank of England fails to raise rates

Ministers have been struggling to prevent a full-scale loss of financial market confidence in its economic strategy after the Bank of England’s decision to rule out an emergency rise in interest rates prompted fresh selling of the pound.

Attempts by Threadneedle Street and the Treasury failed to repair the damage caused by Kwasi Kwarteng’s mini-budget last Friday, with sterling falling to a record low against the US dollar.

Within minutes of the Bank saying that it intended to wait until November before responding to the recent turbulence, the pound had dropped two cents against the dollar and was within three cents of the record low of $1.03 hit in Far East trading overnight.

Some mortgage lenders – including Halifax, the UK’s biggest home loan provider – temporarily withdrew their products as financial markets predicted the Bank would need to raise interest rates from 2.25% to 6% to restore confidence.

Nomura, the Japanese bank, forecast that the pound would end the year below parity against the dollar while Paul Donovan, the chief economist at UBS global wealth management, said investors were inclined to see the Conservative party as a “doomsday cult”.

France announces €45bn effort to shield country from energy cost increases

The French government plans to spend €45bn shielding households and businesses from energy price shocks in a budget focused on bringing down inflation. The finance minister, Bruno Le Maire, said the increase in the cost of gas and electricity would be capped at 15% from January. Gas and electricity price rises are currently capped at 4% until the end of the year in what is known as the bouclier tarifaire (tariff shield).

Outlining key elements of his 2023 budget bill on Monday, Le Maire said it was financed “down to the last euro” and the government’s No 1 priority was fighting inflation at a time of unprecedented uncertainty due to Russia’s war against Ukraine.

“The most important and the most urgent challenge for France and other European nations is to bring down the inflation pressure,” the minister told journalists on Monday. “We don’t want to increase taxes and we want to protect households,” he added.

Special levies on energy companies were expected to reduce the net cost to the country of the price cap from €45bn to €12bn. Le Maire said €3bn would be set aside to help French companies threatened by soaring energy prices particularly those “exposed to international competition”. The French state is the majority shareholder in EDF, the country’s largest electricity supplier – it is engaged in taking full control of the company – and has a majority shareholding in Engie (formerly Gaz de France).

Jared Kushner's Firm to Pay $3.25M for Deceiving & Cheating Tenants in Baltimore's "Kushnerville"

Three US States To Vote on Right to Abortion

Since the right-wing majority of the Supreme Court held in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization that the U.S. Constitution does not protect the right to abortion, many states have restricted or outright banned the procedure. But some states, like California, are endeavoring to enshrine the right to abortion in their constitutions. Although the California Supreme Court has declared that the state constitution’s right to privacy protects abortion, that safeguard remains ephemeral.

In 1973, the U.S. Supreme Court established in Roe v. Wade that abortion is a fundamental right and a state could not prohibit it before fetal viability (able to live outside the womb). Just as the U.S. Supreme Court retracted the abortion right when conservatives attained a majority, California’s Supreme Court could likewise rescind the right to abortion if the court’s membership were to shift to the right.

In August, Kansas voters rejected an amendment that would have explicitly excluded the right to abortion from its constitution. On Nov. 8, voters in California, Michigan and Vermont will decide whether to amend their state constitutions to enshrine the right to abortion. People in Kentucky, on the other hand, will vote on an amendment that specifically excludes the right to abortion from constitutional protection.

Republican abortion bans restrict women’s access to other essential medicine

A few weeks after the supreme court’s 24 June decision to overturn the nationwide abortion rights established by Roe v Wade, the pharmacy chain Walgreens sent Annie England Noblin a message, informing her that her monthly prescription of methotrexate was held up. Noblin, a 40-year-old college instructor in rural Missouri, never had trouble getting her monthly prescription of methotrexate for her rheumatoid arthritis. So she went to her local Walgreens to figure out why, standing in line with other customers as she waited for an explanation.

When it was finally her turn, a pharmacist informed Noblin – in front of the other customers behind her – that she could not release the medication until she received confirmation from Noblin’s doctor that Noblin would not use it to have an abortion. Since the supreme court’s elimination of federal abortion rights, many states have been enacting laws which highly restrict access to abortion, affecting not only pregnant women but also other patients as well as healthcare providers.

Noblin is one of the 5 million methotrexate users across the US and one of the country’s many autoimmune patients. Although she was eventually given her prescription, Noblin and other patients are now forced to grapple both with a monthly invasion of privacy at pharmacies that ask them about their reproductive choices as well as the possibility of being wholly denied the medication in the future due to restrictive laws.

For 60 years, methotrexate has been considered a cheap, standard treatment for nearly 60% of rheumatoid arthritis patients. It is also widely used to treat other autoimmune diseases, including Crohn’s disease, lupus and psoriasis. And, because it inhibits certain cellular functions, it has been used to treat a variety of cancers including leukemia, breast cancer, lung cancer and lymphoma.

But methotrexate also treats ectopic pregnancies, in which a fertilized egg implants outside the uterus. Although rare, with only about 100,000 occurring annually, ectopic pregnancies are fatal for fetuses and can severely jeopardize mothers’ health. Therefore, the only treatment is abortion, and methotrexate commonly is combined with other medicine to perform the procedure.



the horse race



NYT CAUGHT Doing Blatant Biden Propaganda



the evening greens


Sudden die-off of endangered sturgeon alarms Canadian biologists

When the first spindly, armour-clad carcass was spotted in the fast-flowing Nechako River in early September, Nikolaus Gantner and two colleagues scrambled out on a jet boat, braving strong currents to investigate the grim discovery. Days later, the remains of 10 others were spotted floating along a 100km stretch of the river in western Canada.

In total, 11 endangered white sturgeon have mysteriously died in a short period of time, blindsiding biologists, who are trying to save a fish teetering towards extinction. ...

So far, there are no obvious answers. The team hasn’t found any sign of trauma nor evidence of chemical exposure, disease, or angling-induced death. “Whatever it is, it affects larger sturgeon, not other species. It’s constrained to a place in time and space. So that gives us some clues,” said Steve McAdam, a biologist with the province’s ministry of land, water and resource stewardship. “In a way, it’s easier to rule a bunch of stuff out than to rule some things in.” ...

Before the mysterious die-offs, white sturgeon, which are listed as a federal species at risk, were already in trouble. Over the last century, the numbers in the Nechako River have dropped from more than 5,000 to only 500. Soon after a dam was built on the Nechako River in 1957, the species experienced what biologists call “recruitment failure” – new fish weren’t being added to the population.

Overfishing, drainage projects and dam construction have all contributed to the collapse. On all the rivers in the province where sturgeon once thrived, dams have crushed their populations. Only the Fraser River, the largest without a dam, has a relatively healthy sturgeon population in the tens of thousands. All of the 26 remaining species of sturgeon are now at risk of extinction. They are the victims of overfishing; in some species, like beluga sturgeon, the roe is prized as caviar. And the habitats they have persisted in are disappearing.

"Immoral & Sinful": Bishop Barber Blasts Mississippi Gov. for Failing to Protect Jackson's Water

Florida issues evacuation order for Tampa ahead of Hurricane Ian

Florida officials issued a mandatory evacuation order to residents of Tampa in anticipation of Hurricane Ian, and leaders in other parts of the state are warning residents that similar orders could come within the next day as they brace for a storm that forecasters fear will be potent.

Ian moved near the Cayman Islands and closer to western Cuba early on Monday on a track to hit Florida as a major hurricane this week. ...

If Ian hits Tampa directly it would be the first hurricane to do so in a century, meteorologists calculate. ...

The storm was forecast to intensify rapidly and hit Cuba as a major hurricane – category 3 or above – late Monday, and then become an even stronger category 4 hurricane over warm Gulf of Mexico waters before striking the west central coast of Florida as soon as Wednesday.


Also of Interest

Here are some articles of interest, some which defied fair-use abstraction.

The U.S. Is Winning Its War On Europe's Industries And People

US Tightens the Screws on Turkey Over Cooperation with Russia

How Peace In Ukraine Has Been Made Almost Impossible

US courts must stop shielding government surveillance programs from accountability

New ‘Striketober’ looms as US walkouts increase amid surge in union activity

Tutankhamun’s burial chamber may contain door to Nefertiti’s tomb

Irresponsible NATO Aggression Against Russia Could Trigger NUCLEAR WAR: Lt Col Daniel Davis

STRIKETOBER: Protests Spread To 21 Airports Nationwide

Gaetz CLEARED By DOJ On Sex Trafficking Charges

Professor MELTS DOWN LIVE Over Fed's Historic Mistake

Putin Grants Edward Snowden RUSSIAN CITIZENSHIP, WaPo SMEARS Pulitzer Prize Source


A Little Night Music

Tommy Brown And Orchestra - Atlanta Boogie

Tommy Brown - V-8 Baby

Tommy Brown - The House Near The Railroad Track

Tommy Brown - Southern Women

Tommy Brown - Double Faced Deacon

Tommy Brown - Remember Me

Tommy Brown - Someday, Somewhere

Griffin Brothers featuring Tommy Brown - Tra La La

Little Tommy Brown - Won't You Forgive Me Baby

(Probably not the same) Tommy Brown - That Cat


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joe shikspack's picture

@humphrey

good ol' vicki. if only she had used her pirate voice and replaced "one way or the other" with "by hook or by crook."

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8 users have voted.

Your link to the economics professor strongly criticizing fed policies is great.
He hits the nail on the head.

Does anyone doubt the largest terrorist organization in the world is responsible
for the subterfuge of the Nordstream pipelines?

Thanks for the tunes!

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10 users have voted.
joe shikspack's picture

@QMS

i enjoyed the econ prof losing it, but i think he missed something in his analysis. there are two major policy drivers in our economy, monetary policy (set by the fed) and fiscal policy (set by the legislature).

for years now, the legislature has neglected its function in the economy to use fiscal policy to stimulate the economy when appropriate and throwing the onus of fixing the resulting mess on the fed, which only has (in comparison) very crude tools.

to skip past a long-winded rant, the failure of the u.s. economy has many fathers and blame for it should be more broadly spread than it is currently.

heh, it will be interesting to see who does wind up being tagged as the saboteur of nordstream. i suppose that it doesn't matter that much since one can be fairly certain that uncle sam at least approved of the plans before the action was taken.

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10 users have voted.
mimi's picture

I tried to read and listen to about half or it and as always the Chris Hedges article nails it to the core. I expect the next strong leader to rise up and lead us sheeps over the cliff.

Too depressed and scared to say anything more.

It is getting cold over in my woods and I wonder how I can cut down a huge tree to get myself the necessary fire wood.

Blessings to you and all of you , prepare well to survive.

Good Night from over here to over there.

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14 users have voted.

mimi

joe shikspack's picture

@mimi

i think that hedges really nailed it in his current piece and explained well why we are seeing the rise of right-wing fanatics.

i can lend you a chain saw and give you some tips about tree felling. how are you at tree climbing? Smile

i've been thinking that i might want to see about finding a better woodstove than what i've got to supplement my gas boiler in case the prices go through the roof this winter.

stay warm, safe and well!

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9 users have voted.

@joe shikspack a wood burning stove. I am so stoked! (he he) Around here, poor whites and the majority of blacks commonly had them in the years when I was growing up. Well, my neighbor, a black man, got 2 stoves from his grand parents and aunts. They are old, made well, heavy duty, and you can't find them of this quality on a modern show room floor. These are the real deal.
If worse comes to worst, I do live in a national forest. I have saws.
My brother was telling me that when he lived in Louisiana for a couple of years, he learned to cook alligator tails, and turtle soup. We have fish, gators, turtles, deer, squirrels, and armadillos, which my brother also knows how to cook. I used to know poke salad when I saw it growing here. I have eaten it, and it was good.
Thing is, nukes will spoil this potential, huh?
Well, we didn't get nuked today, laughed, enjoyed some blues, and we just may make it through this dark night.
Thanks for all you do, friend.

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9 users have voted.

"We'll know our disinformation program is complete when everything the American public believes is false." ---- William Casey, CIA Director, 1981

joe shikspack's picture

@on the cusp

glad to hear that you guys are getting ready for whatever is coming our way.

heh, we have so many deer around here that if i just hit the gas pedal instead of the brakes when i ease down our road at night on the way home, i could more than fill up our freezer. we've got an abundance of squirrels, too, but if you've ever have to skin and dress one, you'll decide that deer are a much better option.

heh, polk salad, eh?

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7 users have voted.

@joe shikspack All the kids, and my way cool parents loved it!
Poke salad grew in our back yard, and once in a while, we would pick it, cook it like collard or turnip greens.
Deer overrun this area, and one jumped out in front of my truck a few years ago, and it did more damage to my truck than the deer. They are all over the roads when in rut.
My brother was telling me about the way to shoot an armadillo. If you shoot it and hit the adrenaline gland, it will be inedible. He says the Mexican immigrants use hoes. If the deer is frightened before it drops, same thing.
I would have a clearer conscience taking out a gator. They are dangerous. Anything else has to be me not wanting to starve.
With what is coming, we may all lose our resistance to taking animal lives for survival.
We will make it, joe. That is the goal. To make it.

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"We'll know our disinformation program is complete when everything the American public believes is false." ---- William Casey, CIA Director, 1981

TheOtherMaven's picture

@on the cusp

It can only be eaten cooked, and you should change the water several times while cooking. Otherwise...well, it probably won't kill you, but you may wish it had, as you vomit up your toenails.

And leave the berries for the birds, or same thing.

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7 users have voted.

There is no justice. There can be no peace.

mimi's picture

@joe shikspack
a branch and I would brake my legs. So. it's a no go. Wink

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6 users have voted.

mimi

“Thank you USA,” said Poland’s former defense and foreign minister Sikorski

Meanwhile, Moscow’s deputy ambassador to the UN, Dmitry Polyanskiy, thanked Sikorski for “making it crystal clear who stands behind this terrorist-style targeting of civilian infrastructure!"

https://www.rt.com/news/563632-sikorski-usa-nordstream-poland/

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9 users have voted.

Have just received news that Joe Manchin’s permitting process that he had attached to the must-pass legislation to keep the government running has been withdrawn from the bill.

Consider this a big win from the point of view of my environmental organizations I work with. Glad to see another example of the power of organized voices!

Have a great evening and thanks for the news and blues!

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12 users have voted.

Life is what you make it, so make it something worthwhile.

This ain't no dress rehearsal!

joe shikspack's picture

@jakkalbessie

that is great news. hopefully, whatever forced this walkback will be able to prevent it from resurfacing in other legislation going forward.

i'd love to see the pity party that manchin is holding on his yacht.

have a great evening!

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6 users have voted.

everything has gone to hell because we - all of us - have allowed too many people to get too rich. I'm not talking normal rich, I'm talking buy-the-whole-Senate-with-couch-change rich. Such people are so rich they have nothing positive to do, they can only commit mass evil. Jeff Bezos can end world hunger with a day's profit (well maybe a week) but then what would he do? How about put a million other businesses out of business? That will take a while, especially doing it in such a way as to have millions of people worshiping him for doing it. Especially if he does it while also gaining the power to destroy anyone who dares to complain, even so quietly. That would require owning the NSA.
One person like that we can expose and hate and fight. A hundred? Normal people cannot even conceive of such a thing. It is too hard to realize that all those people look and talk and think alike and went to the same schools and go to the same parties and churches and golf clubs. They do not compete, they share the fruits of the corruption they have bought, not caring or even noticing who paid this time. Because it's not about money any more, it's about power - the power to destroy. They are not recognizably human, because they aren't. Give a person all the food he needs and he's happy. Give a dog all the food he can eat and you get a snarling, snapping furry basketball that demands more food.
The answer is also clear. Confiscatory taxation and the guillotine when necessary.

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12 users have voted.

On to Biden since 1973

joe shikspack's picture

@doh1304

it strikes me that though bezos is enormously wealthy, he is also tremendously vulnerable. a significant consumer boycott of his cash cow (amazon) would undoubtedly cut him down several sizes and bring him to a bargaining mood. perhaps there are others of the elites who are similarly vulnerable. elon "we'll coup whoever we damn well please" musk comes to mind.

just a thought.

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8 users have voted.

How imaginative! I remember when Dan Quayle did the same. This article below says Harris is the first high level official to visit South Korea from the Biden administration? I guess Biden's own visit in May, 2022, and Pelosi's recent visit don't count. I think they mean the Joint Security Area at Panmunjum rather than the rather uninteresting and bleak DMZ. I travelled rather extensively in South Korea in younger days, and never felt a need to visit the JSA. The USO offered all the servicemen a tour there. I wonder if they still do. I actually don't believe one gains much insight from going there. It's a kind of traditional propaganda stunt. Korean history did start before 1950.

Biden's "attempts at outreach" to North Korea, I must have missed them. Was it maximum pressure? Perhaps it was the fighter bomber strike formation operating in the Yellow Sea in June that seemed like "outreach." Maybe it was the massive military exercises with South Korea which included artillery shelling not too far from the DMZ. Or maybe it's the USS Ronald Reagan Carrier Strike Group now exercising in the Sea of Japan for the first time in five years. That seems like an olive branch, right? Maybe it's severe sanctions that the US has placed on North Korea, which precluded virtually any meaningful commercial interaction by the South with North Korea.

U.S. VP Harris set to visit Korean DMZ after Kim's missile test
Trevor Hunnicut 9/27

TOKYO, Sept 27 (Reuters) - U.S. Vice President Kamala Harris will visit the Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) separating the Koreas on Thursday in a bid to show Washington's commitment to the South's security, according to U.S. and South Korean officials.

The visit, announced on Tuesday, comes days after North Korea fired a ballistic missile towards the sea and amid fears of a possible nuclear test as the Biden administration's attempts at outreach to North Korean leader Kim Jong Un have failed.

Harris' visit, which would be the first by a senior Biden administration official, was publicly announced by South Korean Prime Minister Han Duck-soo during a meeting with the U.S. vice president in Tokyo and was later confirmed by a U.S. official.

On Monday in New York, the North Korean ambassador to the United Nations, Kim Song, accused Washington of pursuing hostile policies that were causing a "vicious cycle of tension and confrontation."

Anyway, in the why can't they get over it category ( a Wendy Sherman expression) I'll go with Tumen River of Tears. Below is the URL for Song So Hee's performance of Tumen River of Tears. White attire is worn after death. According to a note in the historical Kdrama, 이몽 I Mong, (Different Dreams) episode 14, the song was about the grief of a widow, Kim Jeung Son, who discovered after searching for years, that her husband, Moon Chang Hak, an independence movement fighter in the Heroic Corps ( 의열단; 義烈團 ), had been executed by the Japanese in 1923. The note explains the composer, Lee Si Wu, heard her crying all night in a inn near the river and composed the melody to emulate her lament.

In the Tumen river's blue water the oarsman's boat floated
away.
That bygone day, that boat carried off my love,
Where has my missed lover gone?
My missed love, will you return sometime?.
The river too, if a moonlit night, chokes in tears,
Losing my love, this person too gives a sigh
A choked heartrending moan of memory .
My longed for love, my longed for love
Always on your way, on the hill by the river that took you
The Tumen is dyed with fall colors and filled with my tears,
If I cry all night, that departed love
I miss so much, my yearning longed for love
My longed for love, will you return sometime?

(Hangul Source: http://lyrics.jetmute.com/viewlyrics.php?id=558519)

The song is a tribute to the Korean Independence Movement and the sacrifices made by Korean families during the Japanese occupation,* especially the separation of loved ones. A review of the Song So Hee performance by The Herald noted the original (1939) performer Kim Jung Gu, 김정구. In more recent times, the song is also performed in connection with events related to separated families from the Korean conflict. The popular rendition of the song title is Tearful Tumen River. My longed for love, perhaps better translated my longed for beloved, is understood to mean my beloved Korea, in occupation lexicon.

Waiting for Ian to pass by. Hope it isn't too bad and everyone is safe. Thanks Joe for the EB.

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joe shikspack's picture

@soryang

wow, so they are sending somebody whose full mental faculties are in overdrive when performing a ribbon-cutting at a new mall off to perform outreach to south korea? great, i bet the south koreans are going to be as impressed as we are with her selection of word salads.

thanks for the tune!

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8 users have voted.

@joe shikspack After a briefing from the general and a visit to the JSA, she'll be an expert on Korea.

Everyone is expecting another major diplomatic blunder from Yoon. So maybe we'll get a twofer.

The Two Koreas according to Crash Landing on You. So similar, yet so different. What happens when people from North and South Korea cross the DMZ?

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7 users have voted.
mimi's picture

@soryang @soryang @soryang
and I visited him there (to the great surpise 0f many)- He was tkere for over a year. I guess he had tricked out Rummy the Great and that was not to the liking of Rummy the Not so great.

Whatever it's history. It was too cold over there, that's why my son escaped to HI. At least in HI you can't freeze to death- I guess he has seen too often people freezing in DC and Korea- I have photos with him on this high tower (forgot the name)

It's cold over here in Northern Germamy- I don't think it will end well. We can't pay the bills.

Isn't life wonderful?

Thank you so much for the Evening Blues day in and day out.

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mimi

in The Atlantic.

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a few more times.

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2022-09-28/apple-ditches-iphone-...

Apple Inc. is backing off plans to increase production of its new iPhones this year after an anticipated surge in demand failed to materialize, according to people familiar with the matter.

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2022-09-26/asia-faces-continued-...

US stocks ended a volatile session lower after a slew of Federal Reserve officials hammered home their resolve to remain aggressive in their fight against inflation.

The S&P 500 dropped for the sixth straight session, its longest losing streak since February 2020, sparked by harsh central bank tightening programs. The index swung between gains and losses throughout the session after the Federal Reserve’s James Bullard added to a chorus of officials saying more rate hikes are needed and the risks to the economy remain elevated.

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joe shikspack's picture

@humphrey

i'm sure that the fed will raise the rates several times yet. that wealth isn't just going to transfer itself from the poors to the rich.

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enhydra lutris's picture

Hedges appears to be spot on tonight, certainly as to the history at any rate.

Bolsanaro is a really ugly idea in some process of becoming, which is not good news for anybody, no matter who wins there. On the other hand, now we know where elensky will wind up. John Oliver, of course, was hilarious

"Immoral & Sinful" from Bishop Barber anybody is simply a PITA. In the mouths and from the pens of any religionistas, those words are hate speech, used to attack, demean and "other" those who don't buy into their dogma and cant. We really don't need them, of any stripe, meddling in our politics and spewing their divisive and misguided rhetoric. Bishop Barber, unlike John Oliver, isn't funny at all, especially since many of the worst "sins" are but thought crimes against his particular cult's dogmas. /rant

be well and have a good one

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That, in its essence, is fascism--ownership of government by an individual, by a group, or by any other controlling private power. -- Franklin D. Roosevelt --

joe shikspack's picture

@enhydra lutris

heh, bolsonaro is the world's slowest-moving horror show, threatening to take over a whole country.

while i agree with you that the less religion that enters our politics the better, it is sort of funny to watch one religionista call out the people who are "protecting god and country" for their immorality and sinful behavior.

have a great evening!

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enhydra lutris's picture

@joe shikspack

while i agree with you that the less religion that enters our politics the better, it is sort of funny to watch one religionista call out the people who are "protecting god and country" for their immorality and sinful behavior.

He had his long running "special demonstration day" which he called something like Moral Mondays and a whole bunch of Bernie types decided to join the festivities for one day and arranged transport and shit and then his people told them that they couldn't if they were wearing any Bernie insignia. People want to attend your demonstration to support your policies, agenda and goals, and you turn them away based on some bullshit purity test? Those are some very funny morals if nobody can show up with any logos or pins of any type, or if not, then WTF? Of course, I'm also one of those types who would never go to a "Moral" anything because I object to all things "Moral" anyway. "Ethics" is OK, but "morals" are religion based and yo no tengo.

be well and have a good one

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7 users have voted.

That, in its essence, is fascism--ownership of government by an individual, by a group, or by any other controlling private power. -- Franklin D. Roosevelt --

in that Glenn Greenwald interview about Snowden (from about 9:30) re: Trump inclining to pardon Snowden and possibly Assange, as well as declassifying a bunch of documents ranging from the Kennedy assignation(s?) to Russiagate, but ultimately declined to do the pardons after being threatened by senior members of his own party (think McConnell, Lindsay Graham...) with conviction in his 2nd impeachment trial if he went through with them.

(Trump claims that he *did* order declassification of documents - but the DoJ slow-walked and then ultimately failed to release them.)

Krystal appeared genuinely surprised by the above and claimed to have heard nothing about it - which I found surprising as it's not exactly new news...

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The bankruptcy of the liberal class means that those who decry the folly of permanent war and NATO expansion, mercenary trade deals, exploitation of workers by globalization, austerity and neoliberalism come increasingly from the far-right.

And increasing *less* from what passes for left/progressive/green. Not that there aren't occasional helpful signs - like when much of the French left came out against draconian Covid policies prior to the French presidential elections and and a similar alignment of Jeremy Corbyn and Tory back-benchers in the UK.

Not that the World Socialists are having it:

https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2022/01/31/vacc-j31.html

More recently, in Germany Die Link and AfD seem to be more or less on the same page in criticizing the German government (the Greens, in particular) policy of sacrificing the welfare of its own citizens for the sake of prosecuting the Ukraine war.

This right-wing rage, dressed up in the United States as Christian fascism, has already made huge gains in Hungary, Poland, Sweden, Italy, Bulgaria and France and may take power in the Czech Republic, where inflation and rising energy costs have seen the number of Czechs falling below the poverty line double.

Huh? What is an American 'Christian fascist', anyway? Where can I find and observe one? Even those few who identify as Christian nationalists are a small and uninfluential minority within the American 'right'. Far more prevalent there would be those who identify more as classical liberals, ideological descendants of such as Thomases Jefferson and Paine who, as Deists, can hardly be characterized as rabidly pro-Christian.

And as for characterizing the growing popular resistance to elite rule gamed against them as "right-wing" rage, why isn't it more appropriate to just call it *popular* rage?

Hedges does OK with his Nazi history - not so much when attempting to call the current situation.

Alexander Dugin seems a lot closer to getting that in this discussion of his Fourth Political Theory from June, 2021:

...
Perhaps it is more understandable if one divides the new political camps into globalists (Liberalism 2.0) and anti-globalists. One must not forget: Liberalism 1.0 will not be “reformed”, it will also become the “enemy” of Liberalism 2.0. We can perhaps even speak of a “mutation”. Because there are also old-style liberals who are now more drawn to the camp of anti-globalists because they reject the limitless, hedonistic and total individualism of Liberalism 2.0.

So liberals against liberals?

Dugin: [laughs] Liberalism 2.0 can be seen as a kind of “fifth column” within liberalism. And the new liberalism is brutal and unyielding, it no longer discusses, it does not invite debate. It is a “cancel culture”, it stigmatizes its opponents, it excludes them. “Old” liberals also fall victim to this, as can be seen almost regularly in Europe today. Who are the victims of the “cancel culture”? Maybe fascists or communists? Most of the time it is artists, journalists and authors who have been completely in the mainstream waters – but who are now suddenly targeted. Liberalism 2.0 lets the hammer go round.

Your country, Russia, is seen today as a great opponent of globalism – especially under President Vladimir Putin…

Dugin: The resurgence of Putin’s Russia can be understood as a new mix of the Soviet-style strategy of anti-Western politics and traditional Russian nationalism. On the other hand, the Putin phenomenon remains a mystery – even to us Russians. Certainly, one can recognize “national Bolshevik” elements in his politics, but also a lot of liberal elements. Incidentally, this also applies to the Chinese phenomenon. Here we see again the special Chinese communism mixed with perceptible Chinese nationalism. The same can be said of the growth of European populism where the distance between the left and the right is increasingly disappearing to the point of the symbolic creation of the left-right alliance in the Italian government: I am talking about the agreement between the “Lega Nord” (right-wing populist) and the “5-star” movement (left-wing populist). We see the same phenomenon prefigured in the populist revolt of the “yellow vests” against President Emmanuel Macron in France, in which the supporters of Marine Le Pen fought together with the supporters of Jean-Luc Mélenchon against the liberal center.

The “left-right” alliances you mentioned only existed for a certain period of time, often they fought each other again more than the liberal center…

Dugin: That’s a key point. Since the anti-globalist, right-left alliances are the greatest opponents of Liberalism 2.0, it must constantly fight them, keep them small and also infiltrate them. If anti-globalist left and right in Europe fight each other more than the center, then liberalism 2.0 is the laughing third party. What is more: there is even a certain tendency on the part of the fringes to make pacts with the center in the fight against the other fringe. I think you can see such a situation in all European countries. Thus, Globalism fragments the camp of its opponents and prevents a possibly powerful alliance.

...

In your essay you refer to Donald Trump as the “midwife of Liberalism 2.0”. What do you mean?

Dugin: I have already said: a political ideology cannot exist if the “friend-foe antagonism” is erased. It loses its identity. To have no more enemy is to commit ideological suicide. So an obscure and undefined external enemy was not enough to justify liberalism. By demonizing Putin’s Russia and Xi Jinping’s China, the liberals could no longer be convincing. More than that: the assumption of the existence of a formal, structured ideological enemy outside the liberal zone of influence (democracy, market economy, human rights, universal technology, total network, etc.) after the onset of the unipolar moment in the early 1990s on a global level would have been tantamount to acknowledging a serious mistake. Logically, an enemy from within had to appear. This was a theoretical necessity in the development of ideological processes during the 1990s.

This enemy from within appeared just in time, at the exact moment when it was needed most. And it had a name: Donald Trump. He embodied the boundary between Liberalism 1.0 and Liberalism 2.0. Initially, attempts were made to establish a connection between Trump and “red-brown Putin”. This seriously damaged Trump’s presidency, but was ideologically inconsistent. Not only because of the lack of real relations between Trump and Putin and Trump’s ideological opportunism, but also because Putin himself is, in fact, a very pragmatic realist.

Much like Trump, Putin is a poll populist, and like Trump, he’s most likely to be an opportunist with no real interest in a worldview. The alternate scenario portraying Trump as a “fascist” is just as ridiculous. Because it has been used by his political rivals too often, it has caused trouble for Trump, but it has also been inconsistent. Neither Trump himself nor his staff consisted of “fascists” or representatives of any right-wing extremist tendency which had long ago been marginalized in American society and only existed as a kind of extreme libertarian fringe or kitsch culture.

How can you then ultimately classify Trump?

Dugin: Trump was and is a representative of Liberalism 1.0. If we put aside all foreign regimes that oppose liberal ideology in their political practice, there will only be one real enemy of liberalism left – liberalism itself. So in order to move forward, liberalism had to carry out an “internal cleansing”. And it is precisely this old liberalism that has been identified with the symbolic figure of Donald Trump. He was the ultimate enemy in the election campaign of Joe Biden, who stands for the new liberalism 2.0. Biden spoke of the “return to normal”. Liberalism 1.0 – national, capitalist, pragmatic, individualistic and to a certain extent libertarian – was thus declared an “abnormality”.

Liberalism focuses on individualism, that is, the individual human being. Other ideologies speak in terms of collectives like the people or the class. What does Liberalism 2.0 do?

Dugin: Right. The figure of the individual plays the same role in the social physics of liberalism as the atom in scientific physics. Society consists of atoms/individuals, who are the only real and empirical basis for subsequent social, political and economic constructions. Everything can be reduced to the individual. That is the liberal law. So the struggle against all kinds of collective identity is the moral duty of liberals, and progress is measured by whether or not this struggle is successful.

A look at Western societies shows that the struggle was largely successful…

Dugin: At that point, when Liberals began to realize this scenario, despite all their victories, there was still something collective, some kind of forgotten collective identity that also needed to be destroyed. Welcome to gender politics! To be a man and a woman means to share a collective identity which dictates strong social and cultural practices. This is a new challenge for liberalism. The individual must be liberated from biological sex, since the latter is still viewed as something objective. Gender must be purely optional and seen as a consequence of a purely individual decision.

Gender politics starts here and changes the very nature of the concept of the individual. The postmodernists were the first to show that the liberal individual is a masculine, rationalist construction. Simply equalizing social opportunities and functions for men and women, including the right to change gender at will, does not solve the problem. The “traditional” patriarchy still survives by defining rationality and norms. Hence, it has been concluded that the liberation of the individual is not enough. The next step consists in the liberation of the human being or rather the “living entity” from the individual.

Now the moment is approaching for the final replacement of the individual by the gender-optional entity, a kind of network identity. And the final step will eventually be to replace humanity with creepy beings – machines, chimeras, robots, artificial intelligence and other species of genetic engineering. The line between what is still human and what is already post-human is the main problem of the paradigm shift from Liberalism 1.0 to Liberalism 2.0. Trump was a human individualist who defended individualism in the old style of human context. Perhaps he was the last of his kind. Biden is a representative of the arriving post-humanity.

So far, it all sounds like a smooth march for the globalist elite. Can one counter that?

Dugin: One cannot avoid the realization that both old-fashioned nationalism and communism have been defeated by liberalism. Neither right-wing nor left-wing illiberal populism can win the victory over liberalism today. To be able to do this, we would have to integrate the illiberal left and the illiberal right. But the ruling liberals are very vigilant about this and always try to prevent any movement in this direction in advance.

The short-sightedness of the radical left and radical right politicians and groups only helps liberals to implement their agenda. At the same time, we must not ignore the growing chasm between Liberalism 1.0 and Liberalism 2.0. It seems as if the internal cleansing of modernity and postmodernism is now leading to brutal punishment and excommunication of new species of political beings – this time the liberals themselves are being sacrificed.
(Hedges himself is an example of this - booted, along with decades of his work - unceremoniously from Youtube for straying off the ideological reservation - BR)
Those of them who do not consider themselves as a part of the Great Reset strategy and the Biden-Soros axis, those who refuse to enjoy the final disappearance of good old mankind, good old individuals, good old freedom and the market economy. There will be no place for any of these in Liberalism 2.0.

It will become post-human, and anyone who questions such a new concept will be welcomed to the Unity of Enemies of the Open Society.

And then we, Russians, will be able to tell them: “We have been here for decades and we feel more or less at home here. So we welcome you to hell, newbies!” Every Trump supporter and ordinary Republican is now seen as a potentially dangerous person, just as we have been for a long time. So let Liberals 1.0 join our ranks! To do this, it is not necessary to become illiberal, philo-communist or ultra-nationalist. Nothing like that! Everyone can keep their good old prejudices for as long as they want. The “Fourth Political Theory” presents a unique position where true freedom is welcomed: the freedom to fight for social justice, to be a patriot, to defend the state, the church, the people, the family – and to remain a human.

Prof. Dugin, thank you very much for the interview.

may take power in the Czech Republic, where inflation and rising energy costs have seen the number of Czechs falling below the poverty line double.

Thanks to my grandmother coming to America at from Bohemia at the age of two, I could potentially get Czech citizenship - maybe worth looking into. Or if things really go south in Japan maybe I could make it to Sakhalin in a makeshift craft and end up having a beer with Snowden in Moscow.

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