Welcome to Saturday's Potluck - 1-8-2022

“Learn the rules like a pro, so you can break them like an artist.”
Pablo Picasso

Today's collection of articles take a look at various viewpoints of a Chinese (Oriental) challenge to the hegemony of Anglo-Saxon culture and legal dominance of the world.

The United States and the Anglo-Saxon Future July 1896 (no that is not one of my too frequent typos) by George Burton Adams for The Atlantic

It is one of the commonplaces of our time that the world has become small and closely united, but the practical consequences of this fact, as bearing on our own future, we of the United States have not yet appreciated. We are entering with the rest of the world upon a new era of history, in which the conditions that have prevailed in the past will no longer be the determining conditions, and in which our own best and highest interests can no longer be measured by the standard of Washington’s Farewell Address. The drama of international politics has already passed into a new act, whose stage is the world, and whose actors are no longer nations in the sense of a hundred years ago, but great races or nations with a world-position; an act in which the petty questions of European boundary lines or the balance of power—the chief objects of the entangling alliances against which we were warned—will sink, as they are even now sinking, into the most trivial byplay.
...
The United States has far more to gain by occasionally sacrificing some of its rights for the benefit of others, and by convincing weaker nations that they may be sure of justice and of honest treatment, that they may expect even more than really belongs to them rather than less, than it has to gain by any policy of aggression.

But, still further, if we are ever to be called to such a position of leadership as this, we must first be able to meet one indispensable condition. We must learn to realize, as we do not yet, the true identity of interest between ourselves and the rest of the Anglo-Saxon world. England stands for everything for which we stand or of which we boast. We all know that every English colony is a democratic republic. The political institutions in which we most firmly believe, and which we hope in some vague way—by the force of our example, perhaps—to make the possession of all men, she is actually planting and maintaining throughout large regions of every continent. Our easiest way to make these institutions prevail in the world is by alliance with her. Our surest way to hinder their spread is to join the alliance of her enemies.

But this is not all. This identity of interest may well be argued on a lower ground. The warnings which we have heard now and then in the past few years, from very competent observers, of a coming struggle for commercial and industrial supremacy with races whose rivalry we have never yet felt may prove well founded. The Oriental, whose keenness of mind and talent for business, whose faculty of patience and frugal standard of living, make him a most formidable competitor, and who has already begun to exploit the world in his own interest, may soon gain all that the West has to teach him; and in learning the lessons of our civilization he may learn the greatness of his own advantage. For in a struggle of this kind, if it should come, the odds would not be so clearly on our side as we should like to believe. In numbers and in economy the odds would be against us, and the most that we could claim in mental gifts would be an even balance.1 Such a struggle would not be one for supremacy only, but for existence itself. If there should prove to be a situation like this before us, isolation would mean defeat. The close alliance of the Anglo-Saxon world—a world, indeed, furnishing every diversity of commercial condition—would alone provide the requisites of safety in a common policy of defense.

________

Current thoughts on China replacing Anglo-Saxon world order.

Why does the West think China wants global hegemony? Jan 3, 2022 by David P. Goldman (Spengler)

Former Trump Defense Department planner Elbridge Colby claimed China wanted to subjugate the countries of the First Island Chain (Taiwan or the Philippines, as convenient) to drive America from the “Second Island Cloud” and thence to the blue oceans.

Americans think that China aspires to world hegemony, while Professor Wen contends that the aspiration to hegemony as such is the fatal flaw of empires past and present. Americans will dismiss Wen’s analysis as Chinese dissembling, but they would be mistaken to do so.
...
America’s Cold War triumph, Wen believes, was simply “the most recent decisive victory” in a long series of contests with other putative hegemons, including “the Spanish Empire, the Dutch Empire, the French Empire and the German Empire.”

China, adds Professor Wen, was a bystander to the Great Power competition for hegemony during the 1960s and 1970s. This in turn was a contest within a “small world,” between Western civilization and Eastern Orthodox civilization, in which the non-Christian civilizations – Chinese, Indian and Islamic – had limited stakes.
...
When I wrote of “China’s plan to Sino-form the world” in my 2020 book, I referred to the export of China’s digital infrastructure to the Global South, in the ultimate exercise of soft power.

Its 5G broadband, fast trains, e-commerce, e-finance, telemedicine and other Fourth Industrial Revolution technologies well may transform backward economies into little Chinas, starting in Southeast Asia.

China surely aspires to return to first position in world manufacturing technology, which it held from the beginning of recorded history until the 18th century, and it will try to extend its influence and power by dominating the new technologies enabled by fast broadband.
...
But China is indifferent to how we barbarians govern ourselves. Elsewhere Professor Wen has compared the character of the Chinese, a settled people for thousands of years, to that of Westerners, who (as he put it) only recently walked out of the jungle.

I think that he is quite unfair to us. But the point is that the Chinese have no intention of imposing their political system on the United States; they do not believe we are capable of such enlightened governance.

The Soviet Union, I should add, fell not only because it overreached, but because the United States responded to its hegemonic ambitions by starting a revolution in military technology. From this we derived every important invention of the digital age, from mass-produced computer chips to optical networks.
...
China wants to dominate its coasts and has invested massively in surface-to-ship missiles, submarines, missile boats, aircraft and other weapons to prevent the United States from projecting power in the Western Pacific. A December report from Harvard’s Belfer Center under the direction of Graham Allison argued that it had already succeeded.

Military superiority near Chinese territory – including Taiwan, which China considers a rebel province – is one motivation for China’s naval buildup. Another is China’s long-range vulnerability to a blockade.
...
They have read Edward Luttwak’s book The Rise of China vs. the Logic of Grand Strategy, which argued that an American-led coalition can strangle China just as the Allies encircled Germany during World War I.

________

The Rebuttal
China’s hegemonic intent increasingly hard to deny January 5, 2022 Denny Roy

Goldman not only asserts that China has no hegemonic intent, he goes so far as to allege that, for “many” Americans, “it doesn’t matter whether China is [in fact] hegemonic; its offense is being China.”

This is an important topic, and Goldman and Wen make several specious arguments that demand refutation.
...
Goldman argues that the defining feature of a hegemon is that it sends its military to seize overseas territory for colonies, which become part of an “imperial economy” from which the hegemon extracts resources. By these criteria, Goldman argues, China is not a hegemon, because the “Chinese never sent their armies or large numbers of colonists around the world.”

This, however, is a selective and idiosyncratic definition of hegemony. Major powers can be domineering without following the Rome, fascist Japan or USSR models. The current superpower, for instance, neither militarily occupies foreign countries against their will nor operates an “imperial economy.”

Modern China obviously does not have foreign colonies acquired through military force.

Equally obviously, however, Beijing pressures, corrupts and coerces foreign governments to act in support of the Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP) agenda in various ways, including military intimidation, cutting off trade, bribing foreign officials, grey zone activities, harassment in contravention of professional norms, hostage diplomacy, cyberwarfare and collusion with other outlaw governments.

The frequent result is Beijing forcing other governments to abandon their preferred course of action – to “suffer what they must.”
...
Hard-edged realpolitik foreign policy, including resorting to merciless warfare, was a common feature of the pre-modern Chinese government, one that has carried over into the CCP era – an example being the 1979 campaign to “teach Vietnam a lesson.”

Even the 15th-century voyages of the famous Chinese admiral Zheng He, which the CCP has often touted as proof of China’s historical benevolence, are interpreted in a darker light by non-Chinese historians.

China’s famous tribute system was based on a preponderance of Chinese power relative to other states and a willingness to use that power punitively to keep regional governments in line. In other words, pre-modern China was a hegemon.
...
Goldman says any suspicion that China is gearing up for “a campaign for global military supremacy” is undercut by the fact that China has only one confirmed overseas military base (in Djibouti), while the US has hundreds.

This is a straw-man argument. The absence of “a campaign for global military supremacy” is not preventing China from bullying multiple states both within and outside the Asia-Pacific region.

Goldman’s argument also lacks historical context. The United States has been a superpower for a century, which explains the extensive global power-projection infrastructure. China is a nascent great power, new to the game.

________

This angle of Empire is not one I had considered. Citizens in other countries concerned about their lack of input in United States electoral politics. I seldom agree with this author, but he does bring to light a faction of European intellectuals historical world view.

America’s crisis is China’s risk Jan 7, 2022 by Francesco Sisci

Still, perhaps the greatest gerrymandering and voter suppression is not in the United States but outside of it. What to make of the world that spins around America but is not made of American citizens? For instance, we Italians are non-Americans but undoubtedly part of the American empire, and have no voting rights.

President Trump was divisive in America and between America and its empire. Suppose America loses its empire, hidden or not. In that case, it loses itself, and that would be not only an American suicide; it would mean ending the world in all its present states, and only madmen could hope to survive in the ensuing chaos.

The Roman empire faced similar quandaries. Citizenship, and thus rights to vote and be voted for, was first restricted to actual Romans, then extended to people from the Italian peninsula, and then with Caracalla to the whole empire.

There are many conundrums here: People of the American empire can speak and often speak about American policies and get an audience and hearing, but only indirectly.

Is it feasible to carry on like this for long? With freedom of speech but no rights of political participation, can this two-tier system last much longer without creating fragile systemic unbalances?

Now, who has voting rights for our “imperial” president: the senate of “Roman” Washington or the people of the empire?

________

What is on your mind today? (Responses to Covid questions and dialog to be conducted at The Dose diary)

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Lookout's picture

in the argument that China is hegemonic that the US isn't included in the list of hegemonic empires...just

the Rome, fascist Japan or USSR models.

That hints of the bias in the piece. The end of your clip of the article is even more telling...

American-led coalition can strangle China just as the Allies encircled Germany during World War I.

...but China is the hegemony, I mean come on...look in the mirror US.

Jumping to a bordering country Kazakhstan. This smells very much like Ukraine 2.0 to me.
All the riots because...

The price of liquified petroleum gas (LPG) doubled in price on January 1 in Zhanaozen – one litre of LPG in the city was 50 tenge ($0.11) for most of 2021, but increased to 120 tenge ($0.28) earlier this week.

?

Screenshot 2022-01-08 at 07-11-19 Maps and charts to understand the protests in Kazakhstan.png

https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2022/1/7/maps-and-charts-to-understand-th...

Xi send his support saying Beijing opposes any attempts by foreign forces to stir up trouble in the country.

These events are a direct threat to both Russia and China. Turkey seems to be pushing its pan-Turkic agenda. The CIA supported Uighur Takfiris also seemed to be involved. This is all taken straight out of the CIA playbook: Twitter, Telegram channels (including NEXTA), Soros-funded organizations, etc. are all deeply involved (including Ukie PSYOPs units).

https://thesaker.is/color-revolution-in-kazakhastan-open-thread/

The CIA offshoot National Endowment for Democracy is financing some 20 'civil society' regime change programs in Kazakhstan with about $50,000 per annum each. The involved organizations currently seem to be mostly quiet but are a sure sign that the U.S. is playing a role behind the scenes. On December 16 details of upcoming demonstrations were announced by the U.S. embassy in Kazakhstan.

https://www.moonofalabama.org/2022/01/the-us-directed-rebellion-in-kazak...
More the the link above

The CSTO troops which are now landing in Almaty will take a few days to end the rebellion. The outcome is not in doubt.

Moscow, not Washington DC, will have a big say in who will come out at the top.

It is quite possible that the results of the whole affair will, like the failed U.S. regime change attempts in Belarus, not weaken but strengthen Russia:

Dmitri Trenin @DmitriTrenin - 7:57 UTC · 6 Jan 2022
#Kazakhstan is another test, after #Belarus, of RUS ability to help stabilize its formal allies w/o alienating their populations. As 1st action by CSTO since founding in 1999, it is major test for bloc. Lots of potential pitfalls around, but can be big boon if Moscow succeeds.

As I asked above, now who is the hegemonic aggressor?

We have a bad case of willful blindness in regards to US warmongering and resource robbing nature.

Thanks for the OT!

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“Until justice rolls down like water and righteousness like a mighty stream.”

studentofearth's picture

@Lookout I have been impressed by the speed the narrative changed from civil unrest prompted by raise in fuel prices to Color Revolution. The publication of possible connections to various national governments, agencies and proxies.

It makes on wonder if the courtesies of Diplomacy of not embarrassing other national governments is off the table in the next stage of conflict. Secrets discovered during normal surveillance and intelligence gathering will be put out for public display instead of decades of classified material, security clearance required. The quality of controlling the narrative is becoming more erratic.

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Still yourself, deep water can absorb many disturbances with minimal reaction.
--When the opening appears release yourself.

QMS's picture

Regarding the western propaganda about China.

About 24 minutes. Very interesting ..

A different perspective from China with many examples.

It is 2 degrees here with the wind chill ..
Time to fire up the wood stove.

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studentofearth's picture

@QMS Enjoyed seeing them hold an informative discussion regarding Xinjiang, Uyghurs and other ethnic populations in the region.

Explainer | Kazakhstan unrest: how will China’s economic interests be affected by the protests? Jan 7, 2022

Kazakhstan is located on China’s northwest border and is the largest landlocked country in the world, sitting on rich reserves of oil and minerals.

Positioned between China and Europe, it is a crucial link in the Belt and Road Initiative and was where Xi announced the globe spanning infrastructure project in 2013.
...
The Kazakh government is taking measures to ensure the safety of Chinese companies, state-backed tabloid the Global Times has reported.
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Kazakhstan counts on China as its second largest trading partner, and its number one export destination.

Total bilateral trade was US$22.94 billion in the first 11 months of 2021, according to data from Chinese customs, up 14.7 per cent from last year.
...
In 2021, China Railway Express that travels from the mainland and Europe sent 15,000 container freight trains through Kazakhstan, up 22 per cent from a year earlier, and 1.46 million twenty-foot equivalent units, a 29 per cent increase from last year, according to China Railway.

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Still yourself, deep water can absorb many disturbances with minimal reaction.
--When the opening appears release yourself.

lotlizard's picture

my offense always was just having had mostly Chinese ancestry, eh?

Well, f— those anti-East-Asian Ivy League university admissions departments and the anti-Sinitic Western elites they are a part of, in all their bigoted entirety, then…

Nah.

Evidently justified and emotionally satisfying as assertiveness re one’s Asian roots may very well be — I just don’t want to go that “Hawaiian Zionist” / “Paké pride” route. It’s just another flavor of woke (or “muh Israel”) identity politics and grievance collection. That way lies madness.

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studentofearth's picture

@lotlizard the repeated harassment of individuals with Asian heritage frustratingly repeated periodically in the United States.

The choice not to descend into madness is a start. Building friendships and connected lives are other steps.

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Still yourself, deep water can absorb many disturbances with minimal reaction.
--When the opening appears release yourself.

lotlizard's picture

@studentofearth  
You can choose to confine search results to black-owned businesses — but not to any other race or ethnic group. Such are the dictates of “equity” and “diversity” in the third decade of the 21st century…

https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2022-01-07/skyscrapers-go-woke

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zed2's picture

I am intentionally rejecting the politics of division and divide and conquer. And everything from the UK and PRC governments.

Thats the sane way to self-manage the Internet. You can create tools that log and filter out the junk. pretty easily.

I don't go for the Anglo-American Empire or CANZUK or whatever they call it revival of the British Empire bullshit. Nor the Greater China bullshit either. If I was going to support ONE of the parties it would be Taiwan, which is beautiful and has great FOOD, who are friendly and finally shook off the Nationalist extremists and finally had an honest debate about the WTO and RCEP (maybe one of the only countries that have, New Zealand is trying to) a few years ago. Taiwan had or tried to have a sunflower revolution.

Look at what happened to South Africa, because of the trick played on them before they ended apartheid.

https://www.tralac.org/discussions/article/7183-will-south-africa-modify...

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studentofearth's picture

@lotlizard events. Dividing a population group into two teams is part of an old playbook for control and conquest. Providing perks to a few key players on one side increases the likelihood of corruption and abuse of power. Play the sides against each other to increase and decrease tensions and disorder as desired. Reverse perks or bring in outside aggressors if necessary. Any non-aligned group will be destroyed by simply being in between the two teams if tensions are not reduced quickly below the violent stage.

Yelp is team building support for one side, anger on the other side and in non-aligned groups by not including in the "favored" team. We can play the game or educate the target groups to identify the manipulators quicker to disrupt the cycle.

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Still yourself, deep water can absorb many disturbances with minimal reaction.
--When the opening appears release yourself.

SOE---
"The current superpower, for instance, neither militarily occupies foreign countries against their will nor operates an “imperial economy.”

WTF???

You cannot be serious even printing this.

or I should wipe off my reading glasses and try again. Wlould not be the first time I have missed the point altogether.

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NYCVG

QMS's picture

@NYCVG

What is it you do not follow?
China is a super power. They do not try to dominate other countries with military means.
Russia is a super power. They only play in their back yard, except to challenge western
aggression in the mideast. India is not a superpower, in spite of Modi's ambitions.
It is the US that is being aggressive in the mideast, Taiwan, Ukraine, Africa with their
bloated military / black ops / intelligence maneuvers.
Are you suggesting the Russo / Sino / Iran / South American socialist states alliance
is attempting to establish their own 'imperial economy'? Given the backdrop of the NATO / US
/ EU / AU threats against the working economies of the rest of the world, this seems to be
an unsustainable argument. Perhaps your doubts are otherwise based?bThe US sanctions are not helping to make this a better world, except for Wall Street. Therefore, other countries have to develop a work-around. To feed their people. Maintain trade. Without western interference.

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@QMS @QMS @QMS I allowed for the fact I did not understand the post.

As far as I know, China does not invade and occupy other countries.

The USA is the Bully trying to devour and destroy the world.

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NYCVG

Lookout's picture

@NYCVG

The current superpower

is guess who?

Hint...(from 1992)
1992-Draft-Defense-Policy-Guidance_6.jpg

My take anyway.

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“Until justice rolls down like water and righteousness like a mighty stream.”

@Lookout .

Neither of us were confused. And imho, both of us are usually coherent. And serious writers, whatever that means.

If occasionally mistaken---me mistaken, you, not so much.

QMS could, possibly, consider dialing back on the condescending tone he has adopted towards me. More than once.

I'm here to learn, so as long as that's happening, I can shrug off some bad vibes.

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NYCVG

Lookout's picture

@NYCVG

your comment incorrectly as you did the earlier quote. We muddle as best we can, hopefully supporting one another in the morass (or is it more asses?)

We're supportive here but digital communication sometimes hampers or dampens the line. Just like with masks we don't get facial nor body language signals, so it is easy to misconstrue on both sides of a conversation.

We're (mostly) headed together into some uncertain future. Let's appreciate one another.

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“Until justice rolls down like water and righteousness like a mighty stream.”

QMS's picture

@NYCVG

Not meant to harsh your perspectives.
Sometimes I feel like the don Quixote wobbling my lance at
imaginary windmills. Parsing ideas in cyber space is a bit of
a challenge. I'm quite sure if we were to speak together, there
would be no conflict. Please PM me with your contact info and
we may find common ground.
Thanks.
Q

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@QMS Corrections in good faith are welcome.

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NYCVG

studentofearth's picture

@NYCVG The same international publication Asia Times published both articles two days apart. It was the actual rebuttal, not a self selection by myself to ridicule differing opinions with a poorly thought out argument. The mindset of the author is too common in certain circles of influence. Understanding beliefs of different factions is part of working towards peace and cooperation.

Denny Roy's work has focused mostly on Asia Pacific security issues, particularly those involving China. Recently Roy has written on Chinese foreign policy, the North Korea nuclear weapons crisis, China-Japan relations, and China-Taiwan relations. His interests include not only traditional military-strategic matters and foreign policy, but also international relations theory and human rights politics.

Before joining the East-West Center in 2007, Roy worked at the Asia-Pacific Center for Security Studies in Honolulu for seven years, rising to the rank of Professor after starting as a Research Fellow. In 1998--2000 Roy was a faculty member in the National Security Affairs Department at the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, California. There he taught courses on China, Asian history, and Southeast Asian politics. He also designed and taught an innovative course titled Human Rights and National Security in Asia.
...
Publications

Books

The North Korea Crisis and Regional Responses, (co-editor with Utpal Vyas and Ching-Chang Chen), (Honolulu: East-West Center, 2015).

Return of the Dragon: Rising China and Regional Security (Columbia University Press, 2013).

The Pacific War and its Political Legacies (Westport, CT: Praeger, 2009).

Taiwan: A Political History (Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 2003). Published in Chinese as Taiwan Zhengzhi Shi (Taipei, Taiwan: Commercial Press, 2004).

The Politics of Human Rights in Asia (co-author with Kenneth Christie), (London: Pluto Press, 2000).

China's Foreign Relations (London: Macmillan Press, 1998).

The New Security Agenda in the Asia-Pacific Region (editor), (London: Macmillan Press, 1997).

A Time to Kill: Reflections on War (co-editor with Grant Skabelund and Ray Hillam), (Salt Lake City, UT: Signature Books, 1990 and 1992).

A list of his articles from May 2020 at Asia Times includes Wuhan lab-leak theory is back with consequences.

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Still yourself, deep water can absorb many disturbances with minimal reaction.
--When the opening appears release yourself.

enhydra lutris's picture

One thing that greatly facilitates Western and particularly US propaganda and fake histories is the ignorance, at least on the part of USians, of world history except in the broadest and most general sense. In particular for example, what is "Russia", where is "Russia", by what "peoples" and/or ethnic groups was it cobbled together over time and in what manner. But beyond that, there is significant ignorance as to the history and evolution of some of its neighbors and oft times foes such as Turkey and Sweden. How many are aware of the extent to which Sweden was once an imperialist state, the wars it fought and the territories it invaded, especially along what one might view as the Russo-Swedish conflict zone. There was also a constant see-saw of "Germanic forces" throughout "Eastern Europe", not simply during WW I and WW II, but much earlier. Even a somewhat abbreviated and simplified historical atlas is a great eye-opener in this regard, even if it doesn't include all of the kaganates, khanates, and suchwaht that popped up all over the zone between say the Danube and Caspian Sea. All of this without the benefit of plebescites such that state after state winds up comprised of different and often opposing groups, culturally, ethnically, or in terms of language and even language family.

I picked mother Russia because I have much more familiarity with her history, at least in that broad conflict and migration zone I referenced above than I do China, but my understanding of China leads me to suspect that the history and situation was much the same. And all of this was done amid and in spite of interference from the true imperialists, the various western empires, of which USians tend to be primarily aware of the Brits, the Spanish and French to a lesser degree, possibly minimally the Germans, but not the Dutch andd Portuguese, for example, and tend to see the imperialists in a completely different light, with the US, for example, "opening up Asia to trade", rather than forcefully forcing various Asian states to bend to its will in a large variety of matters.

It is an open question whether our species has enough time left in this world to rectify that problem, but I really think mass exposure to a decent historical atlas would do a great deal for the populace of the US.

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 --

studentofearth's picture

@enhydra lutris use maps to show the path forward and backwards in time.

Other map videos created by Ollie Bye.

Russian history has more cultural and linguistic shifts than Chinese.

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Still yourself, deep water can absorb many disturbances with minimal reaction.
--When the opening appears release yourself.

janis b's picture

@studentofearth

Also, if lost and confused your sigline is a guide.

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enhydra lutris's picture

@studentofearth

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 --

Worth a read.

https://www.moonofalabama.org/2022/01/mysteries-of-the-failed-rebellion-...

The beginning of the article.

Mysteries Of The Failed Rebellion In Kazakhstan

It is still a mystery what forces exactly are behind the rebellion in Kazakhstan. While I had presumed that it was a CIA operation it may have been outsourced to Britain's MI6. There are also still other possibilities.

The action seen over the last few days smelled strongly of a color revolution as typically instigated by the United States. The gangs which attacked police forces, set buildings on fire and stormed places where arms were stored seemed very well trained. They worked in formations and were obviously under someone's command. Some of them seemed to have been trained snipers as some shots hit policemen at longer distances. Three of the policemen killed were beheaded which points to some Jihadi elements. Some are also said to have been foreigner and the size of the total force was estimated as up to a quite high 20,000. This has led to some speculate that these people came from Turkey where President Erdogan has used Jihadis from Syria for his foreign policy purposes. But for who's benefit would he do such in Kazakhstan?

Turkey is of course a member of NATO and will in end do NATO's bidding. Russia ultimatum to 'keep NATO off Russia's border or else ...' might be reason enough for Washington DC to create trouble at Russia's southern boarder. When the U.S. fled from Afghanistan it tried to get new bases in Central Asia but was denied them by every government in the area. A regime change in Kazakhstan might put someone at the top who would allow a U.S. outpost. But who could that person be?

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enhydra lutris's picture

@humphrey

already the Mediterranean terminus of the Baku - Tbilisi - Ceyhan pipeline and would seemingly not wish to disrupt deliveries.

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 --

studentofearth's picture

@humphrey as the column - Thanks for highlighting.

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Still yourself, deep water can absorb many disturbances with minimal reaction.
--When the opening appears release yourself.

zed2's picture

I remember reading about it several years ago. it was around five years ago. The Clintons are making a business being fixers. Many repressive foreign countries have hired US fixers. Many are also special government employees, a special kind of government employees that have looser conflict of interest rules. It seems top me that these SGEs are members of a sort of US nomenklatura. They are often paid by both the US government and sometimes are paid by foreign oligarchs and special interests. American special government employees often straddle the ethics lines. Getting paid to show them how to navigate the new world odor.

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zed2's picture

In my opinion. The people who live in any place have the right to determine their own government. So thus there cannot be any rebel province with democracy. They can vote to be whatever they want. No corp[orate state can dominate others simply because some drug or insurance company claims the right to milk and dominate them and their laws because of some deal they made with the most corrupt politicians there which is supposed to last forever.

Look into the interesting story of the IntraEUBITS, where after the fall of Communism, the Western European corporations tried to trap the former Eastern European states with these very bad "trade agreements" and then, for exmple, tried to sue the Slovaks for voting to change their healthcare system back to the one they had had previously which by their wishes, worked better.

Or South Africa and their national health insurance. (which was hijacked by the commitments the apartheid made top the WTO and still has not ben possible a decade after it woin an electoral referendum. Such commitments have no expiration dates and even a total change in government or revolution does not discharge the obligation on the land territory of the former treaty party. See also Eastern Sugar vs Czech Republic, I think for discussion of the ISDS case and I think survival of the obligations through a political change, when the contracting party that had signed the obligation no longer existed. NOTE, I am not a lawyer nor do I play one on TV. Consult your trade lawyer in any legal case. You can find attorneys in the US via the ABA.

Look at all the battles South Africans have had with corrupt governments and families like the Guptas and their City of Shells. (south African issue with a Middle Eastern, South Asian or South African entity in bed with the Jacob Zuma government.)

Looking for a different City of Shells article, I stumbled across this: Isnt the serendipitous Web magical?

"St. Lucy's Home for Girls Raised by Wolves Summary and Study Guide
Thanks for exploring this SuperSummary Study Guide of “St. Lucy's Home for Girls Raised by Wolves” by Karen Russell. A modern alternative to SparkNotes and CliffsNotes, SuperSummary offers high-quality study guides that feature detailed chapter summaries and analysis of major themes, characters, quotes, and essay topics.

OVERVIEW
St. Lucy’s Home for Girls Raised by Wolves (2006) is a collection of 10 short stories by Karen Russell. The book, released when Russell was just 25, resulted in the National Book Foundation naming her one of its “5 Under 35” in 2009. Russell is also the recipient of the MacArthur Genius Grant, and her later novel, Swamplandia!, was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction. Swamplandia! is based on the first short story in this collection.

Plot Summary

Most of the short stories in the collection take place on a fictional unnamed tropical island that is likely off the coast of Florida. The stories are generally dark and often have elements of magical realism that heighten their child-protagonist’s journeys into adulthood.

In the first story, “Ava Wrestles the Alligator,” two sisters living in a swamp grapple with male threats, both real and spiritual. Ava, the younger sister, helps run the Swamplandia! theme park in their father’s absence after the death of her mother. Meanwhile, she also tries to keep her sister, a medium, safe from the ghostly boyfriend that possesses her nightly. In the end, Ava saves her sister from nearly drowning as a way to be with her dead beau.

The story “Haunting Olivia” follows two brothers, Timothy and Wallow, as they sail around the island looking for the spirit of their younger sister, who was lost at sea. Aiding them in their quest is a pair of diabolical goggles, which allow Timothy to see the ghosts of sea creatures under the water. Ultimately, they never find her.

In “Z. Z.’s Sleep-Away Camp for Disordered Dreamers,” Elijah and his friend Ogli, who both suffer from the same sleep disorder, try to uncover the mystery of who or what is slaughtering the camp’s sheep. Also involved is Emma, on whom Elijah has a crush. Ultimately, they find that the camp owner’s wife, Annie, is committing these murders in her sleep.

“The Star-Gazer’s Log of Summer-Time Crime” follows Ollie as he enters into a life of childish crime with the school bully, Raffy, during the summer he had planned to spend stargazing. They conspire to lure newly hatched baby turtles away from the sea, with dire consequences. Ollie finds himself in over his head with the crime ring and is helpless to get out.

In “from Children’s Reminiscences of the Westward Migration,” a Minotaur takes his wife, two daughters, and son Jacob on a trek across 19th-century America in the hopes of reaching the green plains of the West. Along the way, obstacles test this aim, and the family begins to crumble from the stress, but Jacob witnesses his father’s bull-headed devotion to his dream.

The story “Lady Yeti and the Palace of Artificial Snows” involves friends Reg and Badger who sneak into the local ice rink after hours to witness the adults-only event called the Blizzard. They find the grownups giving themselves over to a snow-drenched frenzy and Badger tries desperately to understand why his father religiously attends this event.

In “The City of Shells,” schoolgirl Big Red AKA Lillith becomes trapped inside a giant conch shell while on a field trip. The maintenance man, Barnaby, attempts to save her but falls in, too. When Barnaby tries to save them, Big Red burrows further back into the shell.

The protagonist of “Out to Sea” is Sawtooth Bigtree, who lives in a retirement community made up of refurbished boats. As part of a community service program, he is assigned a buddy on whom he comes to depend. To prevent the girl from leaving, he enables her habit of stealing from him. However, when her crimes come to light, she leaves him alone anyway.

In “Accident Brief, Occurrence # 00/422,” choirboy Tek is involved in an ice plane accident on his way to attend a yearly traditional concert. Another choir member, the mute Rangi, prevents his rescue and the two end up in an ice cave without transponders or hope of rescue. Tek tries to sing down an Avalanche to get help, but his voice breaks, and he is not sure anyone will come looking.

In “St. Lucy’s Home for Girls Raised by Wolves,” a group of girls who are the human daughters of werewolves receive instruction from nuns on how to live in the human world. Claudette, the narrator, learns to speak and walk on two feet, resenting her eldest sister Jeanette who learns the fastest. Ultimately, Mirabella, the youngest sister, is unable to adapt and is the only wolf-girl to return to the woods. "

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@zed2

sounds like a handbook for my nightly
nightmares. Thanks!

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payback for the world trade agenda, our offshoring possibly an unlimited number of jobs to the lowest bidding firms when public money is about to be spent is in a very real sense a form of "payback" to the least developed nations that subsumes the ones of the civil rights era in the 20th century. Now its the turn of countries in Africa if they sign trade deals, with us, and the EU, etc. to get those public jobs. So they can integrate with the world economy. We are the United States, one of the richest countries. If we could just sidestep the rules that we wrote ourselves, anybody could. These exceptions from rules on government subsidies (healthcare, education) are not for us. They are for the very poorest countries and only allowed to be minimal, in both scope and duration. The LDCS are the countries where people are (officially deemed) the poorest in the world. Where wages might be 1/20th of here. And only if they stay poor. Countries like India where wages have risen, are no longer LDCS. The only exception would be in a national emergency, like COVID, where the government paid the healthcare bills of people with a dangerous contagious disease who were not allowed to even be in public, so obviously they could not work to earn the money they need, naturally, to pay for their health insurance. for a short time, if they had been verified as having it. The subsidy has to be the minimal impact possible and the most limited scope and limited time. If they did not have COVID and were sick for any other reason, they still had to pay, and many of them were saddled with $40,000 bills. This is why Joe Biden had to win the primary, to keep the rules based system that we have invested decades of time into putting there, a whole different moral system that replaces the old compassionate one. Everything changed in 1995, ask anybody. if the government had allowed any candidate to win that was making promises that break trade rules, and they did, it might get us sued in the WTO. And we would lose. Everything changed on January 1, 1995. This is because countries have had to make huge sacrifices to get rich like us. To join what we call the international community of nations. So we, the biggest economy in the world trade with us. Its a big sacrifice for their rich people to cut off aid to schools and healthcare for their poor and privatize everything, and no doubt many there have had family members die when trying to find a hospital to treat a sick child. But they made the sacrifices. Those were real tears as Grandmother died of her minor sinus infection. Deaths because of poverty are natural, and cannot be blmed on the rich, they are Gods will some would say, or Malthus'

How could we back out of the deal to pay them back when so many people gave their lives for our "rules based system" as Emmanuel Macron puts it? Privatization by duress is still privatization so a ratchet locks in, no its not reversable simply by voting for anything or anybody. Starting long before the 1994 Marrakesh Agreement establishing the WTO that world where people just vote for candidates no matter how articulate and soul stirring their arguments and then political policies are changed and corporations property is expropriated is no more. Why do you think Achmea went to the experts to give a strirring 440,000 euro speech lasting around an hour?

Yes, that moral world is gone now. The oligarchs won. Communism and Socialism have been buried. The will of the people has spoken. The battle against the poor is over.

Compare the incomes in LDCS with Americans. Why are the jobs going to the lowest wage countries now? There is no doubt that they are the poor ones here. And by being so efficient, they deserve the reward for getting the good jobs.

Imagine how hard it is just to go to college in these countries. Their families have to spend thousands of dollars for a lifetime of private schooling, and often they require bodyguards in these countries, too. Have some compassion for them whether they are rich or poor, they deserve to get a job and start a family too. They or their parents in many cases may have paid employers thousands of dollars to place them here, in the US. I've been told several times, actually that this is common..

For some background on this push by the oligarchys of the Global South and their arguments , look at the NIEO movement. Which you can read about on the G77 and UNCTAD web sites.

They work hard, their millionaires deserve to become billionaires too, just like Jeff Bezos and Bill Gates do. It was never implemented. But a compromise was made in 15-20 September 1986, at Punta Del Este. Services were made tradble. Those jobs are a balancing factor, which is exactly what we are talking about, the payback for the world trade agenda.

The least developed nations get a form of affirmative action if their incomes remain the lowest in the world, they get an edge when bidding for gigs.

Because they are really poor and many suffered under British and French , (especially) Portuguese, Spanish, Belgian, or German colonial powers for decades or in many cases centuries. These colonial powers stripped them and often still strip them of raw materials, people, and many other "commodities" Trade rules also tied the hands of the developing world.

How has this deal been for them? Why do you ask? Who are you? The answer varies. Like in 1930 Josef Stalin (Uncle Joe) declared that "the Soviet Union has no unemployment" The United States got rich because of free trade and free trading only. Right.

WRONG.. That is as far from true as can be. The free trade extremism as we see it today is a fairly recent development, the current trend started in the 1930s in Central Europe. In Austria and Switzerland.

started in the 1980s

the "rules based trading system" making everybody in Paradise rich, is unquestionable in America's MSM. (corporate media) . However its all a big lie.

In his book "Kicking Away the Ladder" Ha Joon Chang explains the real history of the rich nations, is one of extreme protectionism. Not free trading. The Americans and British's "success" was due to decades of protectionism, not free trading. People are lied to to hide the facts under a fog of propaganda. Just like Stalin's insistence that there was no unemployment in Russia when they just shipped millions off by the trainload to the Gulag Archipelago, and a great many, to death there. Under a market economy, developing Russias vast frozen steppes would have cost an almost infinite amount of money - instead it cost lives. Each Siberian railway, each road, each nuclear installation, came at a huge cost in human lives. The dead were buried where they fell, for the wolves to dig up and eat that night. While the US and the rich Western European nations, without fail, sung the superiority of their capitalist systems and free trade, even to this day, they quietly pursued very non market oriented policies. The WTO's guest worker programs are far from free trade also, they are quite corrupt and coercive.. Some call them modern slavery. Frst came the real slavery. after the end of colonialism and the imperial states, decolonialism was never complete, because the arrangements all kept the elites in power. Great efforts were set up to allow the winners of the wealth during colonialism to hyide that wealth from those they hyad stolen it from, and to create mnore debt in the poor countries names which would go straight to the most corrupt, leaving the poor countries buried in massive debts. This is the way the rich countries work.

At the same time, the free trade mumbo jumbo was based on lies. They actually pursued protectionist policies while forming infant industries. After the industries were established they changed. did the exact same things they forbade the developing world from doing. Many argue now that this makes it even more essential and morally just for the developed countrie to keep the deals that they made with the developing countries, such as India, which claims we promised them an unlimited number of jobs that cannot be limited by quotas, this is what GATS Article 16 says.

So many in the developing world are sick of the hypocrisy, as Ha Jon Chang calls it "Rule of Money" enables a deregulated pillage of the poor, So how could be stop the developing countries from ethusiastically getting their revenge, for how they were treated by the IMF, World Bank etc, when we deliberately walk into the trap we set up for them in the WTO rules. Its a perfect trap, masterfully thought out to make it impossible for us to get out of the trap.

They will almost certainly not show us mercy when they have been abused for so long. This was all set up to be this way by our own leadership. (who are immune to prosecution ) extract what they arr owed from the rich nations. At least. And creates a lot of sympathy for them, They will turn a deaf ear to the apathetic citizens of the rich countries too lazy to even figure out the truth? when the same things are done to them that they have for centuries done to indigenous people throughout the world. They made their bed, now I suspect many people from peasants to academics have successfully been manipulated by a skilled strategy involving a former reality TV actor to make any discussion of the North South jobs dispute and many other issues that need discussing, toxic, Trumps job seems to have been to make a lot of things that to any kind of logical person, right now we logically would need to be discussing, like the plans to outsource the service jobs, vastly hijacking prospects for careers of the middle class, once the envy of the world. He made so many things we need to be discussing toxic, Cant people recognize the hallmark of the tactics of Psy-Ops operations in the last few years.. Trump successfully turned the country against our own people preventing America from coming together to help one another, polisoning the well its called. The US is the country that has historically succeeded the most with protectionist policies in the past. But now that its time to actually be the democracy we say we are we are thoring our own people under the bus for the very rich. intentionally toxic giving the captured media a free pass top hide them. BTW, the Free trade ideology is a newer form of fascism. With strong links to fascism of the 1930s in Europe.

Some feel the developed world should be absolutely merciless to the poor in preventing governmenmt helping the poor especially at the times we need to do that. They oppose it on principle! Weve done this to the poor around the world even to the point of letting our own people be treated as the indigenous people they displaced from the land, andcolonialism is guilty of a great many vicious crimes in the past. To enable are by our own and foreign oligarchs is extremely unwise given the history of the Americas.(See Ha Joon Chang speaking on YouTube both below and elsewhere. Kind of like bad parents who pimp out their own children, the rich's loyalties are not national they are to other members of their own owner class, such as the other rich. all around the world. even if it strips the unfortunates of everything, its only business.

I think many such as Trump's allegedly "deplorable" supporters (most of whom seem to be struggling and we should resist those who seem to trying to make us hate them, based on tribal psyops. That would only make sense if the neoliberals were good and the gop people were indisputably really bad.

What if the ones who were claiming to be our friends were actually trying to weaken our country by dividing it against ourselves, with all kinds of trickery? ) They are freaked out for a very giid reason.. Its quite possible they sense that everything has changed and they are being set up in some way to fail by the neoliberal establishment, (like by shipping away their jobs elsewhere) which actually, as I said goes back to an alliance between the British Empire and Central European economists and fascists.. between the two World Wars.. This is the "globalist" movement thats well described by Quinn Slobodian in his book "Globalists". Their spiritual father is probably F.W Hayek.

IN contrast to the previous Judeo Christian Christian ideology, the neoliberalism of the globalist is fairly mean spirited it seems and intentionally amoral. just like indigenous people always have been. The oligarchs of India by all accounts are experts at this kind of divide and conquer act, just as their former associates the British are. In the recent past the British Empire deliberately (yes, all the evidence says so) KIlled as many as 3 million Indians in Bengal as they exported precious food from India. What they did was just as brutal as any other Holocaust in history. More so than most of them. Americans have had a duty to fact check the politicians but instead they let them lie with impunity. This in retrospect was inexcusable. for their intentional ignorance. They created their own bed of nails, they feel that now its time for us to lie in it. The system is designed to maximize the value CHAINS. No matter how heavy these chains prove. Rules are rules. The middle class is expected to be dismantled for the most part. Since they willingly entered into debt. The system is intended to enslave people with that debt. As the "desk jobs" are moved to wherever they can be done the most efficiently, those jobs will move away, permanently, entire service sectors will vanish and along with them a great many careers will end. This has been the plan for some time, and nobody disputes that, you will notice. They are said to make too much for the system that exists today, given their lack of 21st century skills. The poor should have saved more and stayed in college. This being a paradise for entrepreneurs that should have borrowed a few million from their families or the investment minded CIA and become the next Bill Gates or Mark Bilderberg. Jobs that allow people to maintain a shred of dignity such as Like environmental technologies, new forms of energy and civil works in the US seem to have already been committed to be globalized and awarded to the lowest bidders, and those wages will certainly not be above market rate wages. What planet do they think they are on? . Quasi-Public jobs like teaching and nursing too are up for bids. Being funded with tax money. Thats how GATS and the WTO's AGP work.

In 1994 when we joined the WTO this became the path we put ourselves on. The new world order. It subsumes the old one.

This is why they cant have a genuinely fake "Green New Deal" that channels high paying jobs to young people buried in student loans. For one thing, they dont work for the right companies, generally these LDC services waiver are only available to firms from LDCs themselves, the official Least Developed Countries. Because its a forbidden subsidy to others. Like cheap life saving drugs its become an oxymoron. Verboten, if a drug saves lives it cant be cheap, no matter what. It has to be as dear as a human life. Just like a "living wage" in the new world ideology. Supply and demand determine wages, so to lower wages, increase supply. Now, thats literally Lowering the value of a human life, which is based on incomes. Remember Bhopal. Well environmental catastrophes due to endocrine disrupting chemicals, not MIC Gas, are likely in the near future as they tend to persist in the environment building up. Its hard to tell whether intentional poisoning of the environment is malicious or simply greed and incompetence, The impact on demographics is significant, however. When healthcare is affordable and modern, such as in France and Australia, . People dont die when they are supposed to. They keep living longer! Too long, many express, they will outlive their benefits, they say. But EDCs cause all sorts of cancers, often people die of them at early ages.

Its a theft by international corporations of peoples healthy life spans, and they know these chemicals caused problems, going back to the 30s. Like bisphenol A for example, BPA.

Plastics, goes the famous line at the Westchester party in The Graduate. And indeed, plastics became
huge industry. One that made extensive use of EDCS. but they were so useful. Its complicated by trade deals that give corporations entitlements to stability and certainty on everything. They limit governments to doing only what increases profits. And stop them from regulating. Rolling back the last 100 years of policy progress, potentially. profits they are now legally entitled to make they claim so cannot be lower. So they want to churn up communities, so people cant get too comfortable and minimize their expenses by not buying much. The same applies to older people, they dont spend enough. They also want to bring back child labor. Do people understand that? DEveloping countries protest that things like child labor are traditional there. And needed. Children, especially girls are kept out of school. Its too expensive. Why educate a girl, some say. Unless education ios public the cost is often too high. Environment laws are framed bythem as a luxury they cannot afford. And by promising international trade freedom we are also represented as having decided to give up all regulation that exceeds the lowest common denominator of such laws. In other words we must give things like minimum wages, five day weeks, laws against discrimination

Thats also a big part of why the world's rich are counting on the US to provide their wealthier young people with a lot of jobs in the near future. We're accused of hoarding jobs. And keeping imports of services out by holding businesses to unrealisticly high standards they could never meet. Thats basically all the improvements won at a huge cost and many tears over the last 100 years that are being traded away as debts. They are being thrown out because they are in the way of this great scam.

Get ready for that, thats the price we pay for our apathy and failure to engage with what is basically a war on all of us. We need to police whats being done in our names. With our credit.

This issue is particularly controversial in a few very large very poor countries. Such countries tend to not have public services like education or healthcare, or even public water. (People buy bottled water delivered by trucks or other methods, from private companies) becuse frankly the lives of their citizens are not considered that valuable, in financial terms, so they dont want to invest in them. Their rich would be seen here as radiating entitlement and frankly too greedy. Thats the model the neoliberals seem to want us to emulate, the Asian model. Where labor is cheap and indeed life is cheap.

We brought India before the WTO for having just such a jobs program, one that preferentially employed the unemployed citizens of Uttar Pradesh state. And we won! This was back in the Obama Administration. So now such state run "green jobs" programs are noncompliant with trade rules, if they discriminate against foreign (like Indian) firms.

So its obvious that much infrastructure work is necessary, who will do it? Whichever qualified firm bids the lowest, with a slight edge applied for firms from the least developed (poorest) labor exporting countries. Exactly what I have been telling you would probably happen. How could the US, the main advocate along with india for increases in trade in services, push anything else? It would be like the Pope pushing for birth control. Or the US pushing for public health care. Really.

(NOTE, THIS ALL HAS BEEN SARCASM, I AM trying to demonstrate how colonialism keeps the most powerful and greedy oligarchy itself in power by turning different groups against one another)

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@QMS

I hope this gets better, for you. I have had to deal with things like working at night and "on call" in the past - a lot and have figured out good ways to get high-quality sleep when I need to, that dont involve drugs, that work. Start with a warm bath, drink warm milk afterward, eat some carbs like a piece of toast. Turn the lights down and apply a red tint to your monitors/ That may make you sleepy.

Also the amino acids l-tryptophan and trimethylglycine (also known as betaine, best) or plain glycine, may help. Try it. YMMV. I have never had as much luck with 5-HTP as I would like given the extra cost, plain l-tryptophan works reliably well and is cheaper.

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to the US?

I have my own theories but I want to know what others think?

Personally, although I often couldn't care less if we are "dominant", as I am not an insecure, fearful person and have confidence in my own self and am not as paranoid about others as some here might think, I am very distressed about the financial sector, for the reasons illustrated in the film "Inside Job" (Good Sunday Morning film to watch?) (viewable here). Note that when they say deregulation they are not specific enough about what was actually done or why. As pointed out by Lori Wallach, the WTO commitments made by the US in February 1998 in our Specific Commitments Supplement 3, annex (last page, top) , to "reform" the Glass-Steagall Act the following year caused a kind of massive run on loan lending because the newly enabled investment banks perceived that the US taxpayer was now obligated to pay back the bad loans, a very huge mistake. We still are and everybody knows they are highly likely to do it again if we allow them to.

I don't trust the financial services industry or the politicians who suck up to them. The only thing that would give me confidence is to make people in positions of authority more personally responsible for the financial losses of others. Maybe we should switch to some system where those who run these service sectors were only playing with their own money by some mechanism, we should not let the taxpayers be on the hook for the bankers games they play as they are today. Combined with that problem, ISDS as its included in trade deals is asking for trouble.

Whatis I.S.D.S. ? Investor vs. state dispute settlement. Its when foreign corporations get to sue governments when they make any change in their plans, (the plans can be future plans , such as promises made decades ago to do something that most would immediately say were "politically impossible" such as offshoring 40% of our jobs, by allowing it via a trade agreement like TISA that creates a single, large job market. (free trade in services) This will make it possible for people with top shelf skills to work and presumably live wherever they can get a job. Likewise others will presumably be tied to those jobs, their presence in countries utterly depended t on their employment continuing, making them virual slaves.

. . Say when they decide to regulate anything for virtually any good reason. (Say, health care) The government could then be forced to give up equivalent WTO concessions, which could be huge, and sanctioned until the laws that violate the rules are changed to conform. Innumerable US rules might be found to be trade barriers. A great many of the gains of the lastcentury are already being framed as barriers to their conducting business here and could vanish overnight, unless we wanted to lose our ability to charge insane prices for drugs and have their patents extended indefinitely, (evergreening) We're doing things like sacrificing the jobs our own people allegedly dont want for them. Be aware that everything changed in 1995. Anything that can be called Deregulation of most kinds has become irreversible.THe entitlement of corp[orations.

Doing something like voting for and passing a public healthcare system, is now framed as governments stealing their sacred, private property from corporations and they must then compensate them, taking your retirement savings, for example. How would you feel if "structural adjustment" or austerity snatched away Social Security, something that's very likely. Or the $9.25 Federal minimum wage, allowing people to work for whatever they contracted to, even nothing. (Say they need work experience, they could even pay the employer $9.25 an hour for it) This is where it is going. Really.

Neoliberals would never allow it to simply be paid to its intended recipients. Are you on drugs? Maybe or you don't know anything about them. You know, the people who have stolen our country and planet.

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