The Weekly Watch
Reformation, Reclamation, and Restoration
We sit at the intersection of multiple related crises. Climate chaos, environmental degradation, economic instability, social disintegration, political corruption, public protests, declining health and lifespan and more. Can we find opportunity in the midst of this changing landscape? Is it darkest before the dawn or is it the middle of a long night? Perhaps this chaos does provide an opportunity to reform, reclaim, and restore our natural and social systems. People seem ready for something to change, but the oligarchs are playing every trick in the book to maintain the status quo. These questions came to me after I listened to Jimmy and Dylan Ratigan ...watch about 8-10 minutes to hear the debate about crisis versus opportunity. For some reason the time code isn't embedding but a click (or copy and paste) should take you to the cued portion at 1 hour 28 min and 40 sec. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=23Dc2ZfpKmo&t=1h28m40s
As I think about crisis versus opportunity, I draw a distinction between personal and collective. I can control my personal choices and steer my life in a positive direction. However the larger system (local, national, and global) seems far away from my influence. My aim is to take my skill set and use it to the best of my ability to help others and the ecosystem. I would love to see a united global movement. I guess that is one reason XR gives me hope. They are a global movement. Perhaps their citizen assemblies will be a first step at organizing a larger collective that creates a social reformation as effective as Martin Luther's protestant reformation.
This week I've been wondering if we have become more like 1984's authoritarian prediction or Brave New World's soma induced non-caring population. I guess it depends on where you live. Bolivia (and Brazil and...) are certainly going through a 1984 scenario, where as US suburbanites are enjoying binge watching the impeachment hearings and netflix in a Brave New World soma like fog. Perhaps we live in a dystopian goulash or stew....a little 1984 and a little BNW.
It will take quite a reformation to escape this system of rule by the global corporate elite. Beyond the politicians they own and the political kabuki theater, we also must face up to the control of the CIA/FBI/NSA ... engineering domestic and global coups to enhance the power of the global elites. I see this mafia branch of our government as key to reformation. As long as they control the engine of government, I don't see how we progress. They are not elected and spend lifetimes working to promote corporate power at the expense of working people and the environment. The last president who suggested disbanding the CIA was JKF. The agency created by Truman went rogue long ago and has worked with the mafia on many occasions. For example:
the JFK files’ fascinating new insights about another much-debated Cold War conspiracy: a top-secret killing plan centered on the CIA’s recruitment of gangsters Sam Giancana and Johnny Roselli to murder Cuba’s young communist leader, Fidel Castro.
All this from an agency with no oversight, audits, nor accountability.
Mind control is the goal of the CIA according to Stephen Kinzer
Chris Hedges talks to author Stephen Kinzer about the CIA’s quest for mind control through its experiments in drug and torture during the 1950s and 1960s, both domestically and internationally. Kinzer’s new book is titled Poisoner in Chief: Sidney Gottlieb and the CIA Search for Mind Control.
How interesting that Bolsonaro's first port of call in the US after becoming president of Brazil was to the CIA http://www.brasilwire.com/in-plain-sight-bolsonaro-moro-and-the-cia/
The Brazilian President was accompanied to the CIA HQ by Sérgio Moro, the US-trained Inquisitor-Judge turned Justice Minister who was responsible for the politically motivated jailing of Bolsonaro’s main competitor in the 2018 election, Lula da Silva, who was certain to win until his forced removal from the race. With this, Moro delivered the election to Bolsonaro, and was immediately rewarded with a ministerial position. The pair met Gina Haspel, the head of the agency who had been removed in 2013 after revelations of her direct role in torture of kidnapped suspects in the wake of 911. Given that Bolsonaro is an enthusiastic supporter of torture and publicly eulogises torturers of Brazil’s dictatorship era, this cannot have caused him any concern.
At least Lula is out of jail...at least for the present, because there seems to be no law he could be imprisoned again this time in a maximum security prison like Julian.
...there’s a recent remark by Bannon saying that Lula is the biggest threat to the populist right movement and that he’s the biggest leader of the leftist globalist movement. So, I think the world has to pay attention to what will happen to Lula in the next months, because his constitutional rights and his right to a fair trial are of international interest at this moment.
Glenn Greenwald discusses the situation in Brazil this week in the second half of the intercepted podcast (text or audio)
Judge Moro was not a judge. He was secretly commanding the prosecutorial task force, not just in Lula’s case, but in many, many others. The prosecutors were constantly violating their ethical constraints — trying to profit off of the fame that they got from winning — just continuous exposes showing that there was massive corruption inside this anti-corruption probe that has really changed Brazilian politics in a fundamental way over the last five years. And the fact that Moro is definitely the second most powerful person in Brazil and arguably the most powerful even more than Bolsonaro, obviously made the reporting extremely polarizing and dominated headlines for months and to this very day, a lot of people think we ought to be imprisoned or worse for the reporting we did.
Venezuela is another CIA playground.
And it is more than just Guaido this has been in the works for quite a while.
On Oct. 5, 2005, with Chavez’s popularity at its peak and his government planning sweeping socialist programs, five Venezuelan “student leaders” arrived in Belgrade, Serbia to begin training for an insurrection.
The students had arrived from Venezuela courtesy of the Center for Applied Non-Violent Action and Strategies, or CANVAS. This group is funded largely through the National Endowment for Democracy, a CIA cut-out that functions as the U.S. government’s main arm of promoting regime change; and offshoots like the International Republican Institute and the National Democratic Institute for International Affairs. According to leaked internal emails from Stratfor, an intelligence firm known as the “shadow CIA,” “[CANVAS] may have also received CIA funding and training during the 1999/2000 anti-Milosevic struggle.”
And now a plain faced blatant military coup in Bolivia.
US and OAS help overthrow another government: Behind the coup against Bolivia’s Evo Morales. The US targeted Evo Morales for overthrow ever since he became president. And the Organization of American States helped set the stage for Bolivia’s coup.
Top Bolivian coup plotters trained by US military’s School of the Americas, served as attachés in FBI police programs. Commanders of Bolivia’s military and police helped plot the coup and guaranteed its success. They were previously educated for insurrection in the US government’s notorious School of the Americas and FBI training programs.
This conversation on cross talk about Bolivia's coup was also quite good.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ADHIQWIUdgI (24 min)
Anthropologist and Bolivia Scholar Bret Gustafson on the Coup to Oust Evo Morales in the first half of the podcast intercepted (audio or text)
This all may be about lithium...
Bolivia has chosen a Chinese consortium to be its strategic partner on new $2.3 billion lithium projects, the government said on Wednesday, giving China a potential foothold in the country’s huge untapped reserves of the prized electric battery metal.
The military is being very violent...
'This is What a Dictatorship Looks Like': Bolivian Security Forces Open Fire on Indigenous Protesters in City of Cochabamba
Police in Bolivia Pepper Spray Journalist 'On Purpose' During Live Coverage of Anti-Coup Protests
In last week's column we explored the escape from capitalism. Max is ready to argue that bitcoin is a way to escape national fiat currency.
Max and Stacy had a couple a good shows this week and excellent interviews in the second half. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rsfFh2sD1OY (26 min) with Micheal Hudson at 13 min
and https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3jxDejjKJ20 (26 min) with Steve Keen at 13 min
Both suggest national debt is not a problem it is personal and corporate debt which will crash the economy.
I think it is time to focus on how to be healthy. We are getting sicker and our lifespans are decreasing. I think it is our diet.
Last week I posted a lecture by Robert Lustig on the dangers of sugar and how the corporate food and beverage industries prevent the wide understanding of the harm.
This week I want Dr William Davis to explain the issues with wheat and other grains.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qeyKvCkxp2o (1 hour)
Dr. Mark Hyman explains why vegetable and seed oils are bad for us
It sounds difficult, and it does take adjustment to change your diet, but getting rid of sugar, grains, and seed oils will improve most people's health. It is odd that you eat fats to get thin...just make sure they are healthy fats!
It is counter intuitive that grazing animals can improve grassland....but it is true. Do you trust your eyes?
And here's a nice review on winter gardening in the south...
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jMfVCEgqlTE (12 min)
...and another on winter gardening in the much colder Rocky Mountains.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MmGmALBIb5M (9 min)
The best news of the week is that Pelosi seems to have a real challenger. I hope he gains traction to oust her. Krystal and Saagar interview Nancy Pelosi challenger, Shahid Buttar. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5v6EUnHWMP8 (10 min)
AE mentioned the film "Seven Days in May" which I found on youtube. It is a fun 2 hour movie about an attempt of a US presidential coup...
It doesn't exactly parallel Trump's deep state attack, but it has echoes. I don't like Trump, but I dislike the CIA/Media complex more.
I find myself agreeing more with Jimmy than Dylan on the crises versus opportunity. Last week I suggested using citizen assemblies to create a new manifesto of ecosocialism. I think we need to paint a picture for people and post that picture across all the platforms much like Martin Luther nailing his reformation document to the church door. I see a major impediment to any reformation to be the CIA/FBI/NSA and their hold on the media. Chris' Truthdig piece this week, Death by Oligarchy, points out that the oligarchs are the last to understand the consequences of their moral depravity. Unfortunately they are destroying the ecosystem for all living things as a consequence. We must reform this system or extinction will be our fate. We need to reclaim the rights of citizens and workers to control our lives and operate government to serve the needs of the people. We must restore our natural systems too. There is much to do, and we face multiple powers dead set against forward progress. Shall we try?
I look forward to your ideas, stories, and comments.