Charles Lane: . . . . that brings us to the present day and present President whose name, by the way it’s Donald Trump, does not appear in your book. Now that can’t be an accident.
George Will: The names of Charlemagne and Audrey Hepburn and Duke Ellington don’t appear in the book either [Lane: That’s true] because this is a book about ideas and the current president is not part of that discussion. He has nothing to do with conservatism. He really to his credit has never pretended to be a conservative. He’s an entrepreneur in politics and he’s maximizing whatever he wants to maximize. This is a book about important arguments, and he’s not part of that.
North American Continental Appetite for Narcotics –> Cash –> Central / South America –> Cartel –> Gangs –> Related Violence –> Corruption of Authorities –> General Insecurity –> Displacement of Population | Northern Mass Migration
If you’re on the Soviet / post-Soviet flavored Left / Far Left Progressive Movement, the same that might obtain its image of the world from, say, 927+ or Mint Press, at least consider reading Christopher Dickey’s report on the Cuba-Venezuelan connection and the InSight Crime series on narcotics trafficking and the accumulation of wealth by nominally “communist” and “socialist” so-called “leaders” in captive Central and South American states.
In familiar Orwellian fashion, the New Old Now Old Far Out and Lost Left simply ignores the sustained Soviet / post-Soviet investment in the underworld and what it does to societies everywhere it travels.
According to Karen Dawisha, recently deceased, the Soviet as administered by the Party Nomenklatura had in place in the mid-1980s a contingency plan for its own dissolution (just in case) — source: Putin’s Kleptocracy — so when the state dissolved (Dec. 25, 1991), the assets it had controlled were released to the “privileged of the The Party”. While the state transitioned into its federated form, the state was essentially lawless and without power to impose order on the chaos that ensued. (Aside: the power of the sovereign to police Russia has been always weak in terms of recognized police assets x area x population — the space has been historically underserved in that regard). The “Vory” coming out of the Gulag would present an especially egregious challenge to the new state and, so BackChannels believes, would be incorporated into the “mafia state“, effectively centralizing organized crime in the shadows beneath Vladimir Putin’s full sweep of power.
Now take in Craig Unger’s observations and blend with Russia’s Soviet / post-Soviet obligations and relationships involving all but support for Communism, which ideology was effectively neutralized by the official disempowerment of “The Party” at the end of the Cold War: Iran, Iraq, Libya, Syria | PLFP, PLO, Hezbollah, et al. | other former Communist Party alignments and former Loyalist (White Russian) extensions from the Imperial Period.
Russia’s mafia state, narcoterrorism, integration with big “transnational crime organizations (TCOs)” . . . — Oh! Add a few other states with their active criminal and terrorist funding portions and then imagine the money sloshing about in the pockets of the middlemen — the facilitators, the smugglers — who can’t spend all that dirty loot without cleaning it up some.
NOW, good civic minded citizen (who knows not to ask too many questions), imagine receiving it clean.
What would you do with it?
What if it stopped arriving?
In recent years and now weeks, money laundering scandals have surfaced in various ways: “Panama Papers”; HSBC; Danske Bank; Norde Bank.
The gum shoes and journos do their investigative things; we get the information and the infotainment; and we cluck: “How awful!
Wait a minute — that cash, indecipherable from other cash — is in someone’s economy serving as capital or reserves or as loose dough attractive to business, charity, labor . . . everyone for everything.
Is there a price? A benefit?
One generation does the crime — and behold: Las Vegas.
And the next: good educations; good businesses; good jobs; decent enough rule of law.
Delivered every which way: America’s Addicted: 2.5 million souls.
In the pipeline and driven by corporeal and financial insecurity associated with corruption, crime, and related impoverishment and violence: Central and South American mass migration.
In the way of professional journalism, much condensed and simplified, every editor and reporter must ask about his story: “Is it clear? Is it accurate? Is it complete?”
All authoritarian / autocratic / dictatorial governments diminish the power of the press because . . . they are keeping secrets and intend not to share the reality of their political space with their subjugated populations.
He can’t share anything having to do with his circles of criminal enterprise. Instead, he has to tell the people fairy tales in a loud voice.
However, and in defense of secrets keeping and to criticize popular democratic self-determination — or perhaps point out the limits of the same — the British governing class got a strong lesson when it allowed nationalist forces, induced by Moscow-backed Islamic Terrorism and Migration — I “read” Syria as a deliberate underhanded assault on Europe — to make an issue of integration with the European Union, which has been Great Britain’s nearest and greater market and trading partner. Some part of the voting public had had no idea about where its state really was. Instead, they were focused on the degrading of British life by jihadists and needy migrants coming out of the middle east. They chose to lower the portcullis in an attempt to insulate themselves from what they believed was happening in Europe and happening to them because of a unified Europe. They’re now on the cusp of paying for their misjudgment.
The Donald goes off script and holds forth like Castro, delivering two hours of rambling, crowd loving, rambunctious showmanship; and the Bern, ever more to the point, tells his lovers of his intent to turn the American enterprise system — our realpolitik mix of public functions and private incentives x specific U.S. geopolitical area — upside-down.
What compassionate, moderate, and reasoning American constituency wants to have to choose between the demagogue on the Far (Out) Left and the reactionary on the Far (Mostly White) Right?
While it may be too soon to fix the 2020 contest as “Sanders v Trump”, it’s not too soon to question the off-the-wall egotism and narcissistic motivation of leaders to whom applause from their respective mobs — the “narcissistic supply”; the love that heals all wrongs; the love that affirms their manhood or sense of personal and political efficacy and messianic self-concept and value; the love that is for each politician like no other drug on earth — may be more important than the practical adjusting of policies to create or obtain nationwide improvements in bottom-to-top American qualities of living.
After writing off the several preceding elected Administrations as “an old ruling class”, making the claims that “America is winning again; America is respected again”; moseying around the “Great Tariff Debate of 1938”; making fun of the Democrat’s “New Green Deal”; mocking the press, “Please Russia get the e-mail” he whines sarcastically while the crowd chants “Lock her up! Lock her up!”; viciously firing at “Shifty Schiff” and “The Collusion Delusion”, reliably turning his targets into cartoon caricatures and episodes; and slinging a few more arrows along the lines of, “You leave people in certain positions, and suddenly they’re all trying to take you out with bullshit” (big applause for that nasty note), Trump gets around to what it’s really all about:
We’re in the swamp of Washington, D.C., but you know what? We’re winning and they’re not . . . .
You know what I like about this?
Number one, I’m in love, and you’re in love, we’re all in love together.
There’s so much love in this room, it’s easy to talk. You can talk your heart out. You really can. There’s love in this room.
27:20 -> 19:48 “President Trump takes the state at CPAC”. Breitbart YouTube video displayed below.
. . . thank you all for being part of a political revolution that is going to transform America
(Chanting: “Bernie! Bernie! Bernie! Bernie!) –
No, no, no — it is not Bernie, it you. It’s us together.
We are going to transform this country and finally create an economy and a government which works for all of us, not just the one percent.
3:30 –> 4:47 – “Bernie Sanders’ FULL Brooklyn speech”, Rebel HQ YouTube video as displayed.
Bernie’s crowd loves the way he panders to them, and it’s not too bad, for who would not be for economic, social, racial, and environmental justice?
Bernie and his followers have perhaps been seeing America’s regulated capitalist system become unbridled: “We will no longer tolerate the greed of corporate America and the billionaire class . . . greed which has resulted in this country having more income and wealth inequality than any other major country on earth” (6:35 -> 6:55).
However, who is going to pay for that guaranteed health care?
What anti-social steps may Big Pharma take to reduce the cost of prescription drugs (hint: offer less tested — and cheap — generics?); how will that heightened minimum wage avoid becoming simply inflationary? The eternal “crumbling infrastructure” issue (that’s been on BC’s plate since Lester Brown’s heyday) — Trump offered it too: any progress?
Tuition free public college and university educations: whose pockets, how, and how soon?
Of the two Big Dreamers, BC believes one far more social and concerned with the general American experience, but wonders as well whether applause has been more the motivation for heightened American messianism on the campaign trail than perception of the much needed nuts-and-bolts adjustments that would treat the nation’s land base and people with the care and respect required for better-than-functional politically coherent national survival.
(a) A person commits an offense if the person knowingly manufactures, sells, purchases, transports, or possesses a hoax bomb with intent to use the hoax bomb to: (1) make another believe that the hoax bomb is an explosive or incendiary device; or (2) cause alarm or reaction of any type by an official of a public safety agency or volunteer agency organized to deal with emergencies. (b) An offense under this section is a Class A misdemeanor.
Around the world, resurgent nationalism in defense of indigenous culture has refocused too many on the authenticity of their character: “The Real Americans”, “The Real Jews”, “The Real ____________”.
Whatever the McCoy sought, one might discover a few overlaps.
What answer may there be to so shallow a perception– more than that: a defense! — of legacy in identity?
I spent forty years in the American Wildness before venturing into the synagogue where I live and joining it.
I recall one afternoon lazing on the mall of the Maryland campus when a “Succoth Mobile” stopped not far from where I was enjoying my hour in the sun and a representative came up to me and asked, “Are you Jewish?”
I wasn’t middle eastern.
My American eastern woodlands were nothing like, what, the hills of Judea?
Here for harvest, we celebrate Thanksgiving.
However, I also recall spending hours one afternoon in some lonely part of an upper floor of McKeldin Library (UMCP) looking over the photography of the Holocaust.
I don’t recall the motive, only the moment.
I took my Bar Mitzvah in 1968 reading off a plastic card. The morning may have been a ceremony for two, and, on my side, certainly for the adults. I really hadn’t much to do with it at all.
Forty years later, after walking out of that mill, I walked into a real synagogue where American children spoke Hebrew with fluency at their ceremonies. The “Conservative-to-Reform” Friday night greeting of the Sabbath took place in both English and Hebrew, and the building remains regal and old. There were other European and Hebrew and Israeli features as well as the unmistakable imprint of generations going back 125 years.
In hyperactive America, that’s an old synagogue.
So, one might say, I got to reconnect with family, my spiritual family (although I have spent time with the Unitarians and the Ethical Society as well over the years). I have been also ten years with my synagogue. I am one of those who, perhaps, visit for a time, but I am Jewish, and that knowledge is as fundamental to my sense of identity as my name, Schmuel. You may call me “an American of Jewish descent” but that in no way would make me less Jewish than thou.
Banks, as founder of Leave.EU, wanted Bannon’s data firm Cambridge Analytica to devise a plan in late 2015 for raising funds in the US that would support the unofficial Brexit campaign, according to the correspondence.
The emails are likely to be scrutinised in the US where Robert Mueller, the special counsel investigating possible collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia, has interviewed Bannon a number of times.
It would seem all paths back toward the renewal of feudal political absolutism in the authentically democratic free world lead back to Moscow (and now perhaps Beijing as well).
Without Putin’s permit, Assad’s Sadnaya Prison would not exist. The memory of that obscenity will burn in history long after the “eye doctor” has succeeded in more fully destroying his own estate.
The Interpol stories involving Russia and China: which despot would wish himself to be policed?
Which despotic elite should be entrusted with the coordination policy of the world’s basic global policing element?
And how well will the west stand when it has itself been riven by the renewal of feudal governance?
The EU may impose sanctions on Hungary for adopting laws against the development of civic society, that’s according to MP Volodymyr Ariev, who is also vice-president of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, chairman of the PACE Committee on Culture, Education, Science and Media.”In Hungary there are very serious problems with the European Union, with Brussels. They stem from those very anti-democratic laws that were passed by the Hungarian authorities, in particular against civic society, against the Soros University, public organizations, and not only that. Now the EU is on the path toward imposing sanctions on Hungary,” Ariev told Pryamiy TV channel.
EU / NATO has effectively lost Turkey as a partner for democracy, and it has seen democracy seriously degraded in Hungary as well. While BackChannels has thought it politic to lay off the United States in similar regard, the “Fake News!” President has made that tack similarly difficult. He has degraded the media (for many, America’s “Fourth Estate”); taken a hard run at the Department of Justice (Comey firing; effort to degrade or derail the Mueller Investigation; the out-of-order appointment of Matthew Whittaker as Acting Attorney General); and packed the court with the appointment of an at best marginally acceptable (Senate confirmation vote: 50 to 48) “old boy” of a lawyer.
Politics Medieval v Politics Modern and Democratic?
The barbaric and feudal politics of the world’s civilizational past would seem to be getting its claws into the world’s future and dragging it backward.
Steve Bannon, former political strategist for Donald Trump, said he plans to work closely with the Hungarian prime minister Viktor Orban in the run-up to next year’s European Parliament elections. Mr Bannon revealed that he had visited Budapest to speak to the far-right leader and his aides in meetings not previously made public.
The political operative also suggested Hungary would make an ideal home for “The Movement” – his new campaign group aimed at electing right-wing nationalists in Europe.