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Dec 5, 2016

Internet Censorship in US and Europe Is Coordinated

via TheDailyBellDecember 05, 2016


The EU Is Warning American Tech Giants to Crack Down on Hate Speech Now  …  “They will have to act quickly and make a strong effort in the coming months.” U.S. tech giants including Facebook, Twitter, Google’s YouTube and Microsoft will have to act faster to tackle online hate speech or face laws forcing them to do so, the European Commission said on Sunday. -Reuters
Western governments are censoring speech in Europe and the US, an obvious pattern that clearly shows coordination.
In the US, there is a congressional effort to fund intel agencies that will investigate alternative media for ties to Russian propaganda. Such investigations , if they occur, will  retard this sector and make further, free-reporting difficult.
In Europe, efforts to control speech and reporting are actually being aimed at American communication enterprises such as Google, YouTube and Microsoft (see excerpt above).
More:
The European Union (EU) executive’s warning comes six months after the companies signed up to a voluntary code of conduct to take action in Europe within 24 hours, following rising concerns triggered by the refugee crisis and terror attacks.
This included removing or disabling access to the content if necessary, better cooperation with civil society organizations and the promotion of “counter-narratives” to hate speech.
The code of conduct is largely a continuation of efforts that the companies already take to counter hate speech on their websites, such as developing tools for people to report hateful content and training staff to handle such requests.
Top powers in the US and Europe will not likely admit coordination to crack down on Internet news and views but this is obviously what’s happening.
It is true that European censorship justifications have a longer history. Complaints about terrorism and hate speech have been voiced for several years. In the US, the sudden emergence of concern over Russian influence on ‘Net-based media is a new phenomenon.
Nonetheless, the House has just passed a bill to fund investigations into Russian influence on American media (see here). Such investigations might involve the tracking of so-called Alt.right “hate speech” as well.
Western efforts to “control” the Internet will no doubt adopt certain Chinese solutions over time. In China the Internet is actively being used as an agency of repression. Citizens are to receive ‘Net-based “grades” based on docility and how well they obey laws and generally fit in.
The larger question as governments crack down on ‘Net-based speech is whether or not people’s awareness of what is actually going on in their societies will transcend censorship.

Dec 4, 2016

The Orwellian War On Skepticism

From ZeroHedge, Dec 3, 2016
Under the cover of battling “fake news,” the mainstream U.S. news media and officialdom are taking aim at journalistic skepticism when it is directed at the pronouncements of the U.S. government and its allies.
One might have hoped that the alarm about “fake news” would remind major U.S. news outlets, such as The Washington Post and The New York Times, about the value of journalistic skepticism. However, instead, it seems to have done the opposite.
Author George Orwell.
Author George Orwell
The idea of questioning the claims by the West’s officialdom now brings calumny down upon the heads of those who dare do it. “Truth” is being redefined as whatever the U.S. government, NATO and other Western interests say is true. Disagreement with the West’s “group thinks,” no matter how fact-based the dissent is, becomes “fake news.”
So, we have the case of Washington Post columnist David Ignatius having a starry-eyed interview with Richard Stengel, the State Department’s Undersecretary for Public Diplomacy, the principal arm of U.S. government propaganda.
Entitled “The truth is losing,” the column laments that the official narratives as deigned by the State Department and The Washington Post are losing traction with Americans and the world’s public.
Stengel, a former managing editor at Time magazine, seems to take aim at Russia’s RT network’s slogan, “question more,” as some sinister message seeking to inject cynicism toward the West’s official narratives.
“They’re not trying to say that their version of events is the true one. They’re saying: ‘Everybody’s lying! Nobody’s telling you the truth!’,” Stengel said. “They don’t have a candidate, per se. But they want to undermine faith in democracy, faith in the West.”

No Evidence

Typical of these recent mainstream tirades about this vague Russian menace, Ignatius’s column doesn’t provide any specifics regarding how RT and other Russian media outlets are carrying out this assault on the purity of Western information. It’s enough to just toss around pejorative phrases supporting an Orwellian solution, which is to stamp out or marginalize alternative and independent journalism, not just Russian.
Washington Post columnist David Ignatius. (Photo credit: Aude)
Washington Post columnist David Ignatius. (Photo credit: Aude)
Ignatius writes: “Stengel poses an urgent question for journalists, technologists and, more broadly, everyone living in free societies or aspiring to do so. How do we protect the essential resource of democracy — the truth — from the toxin of lies that surrounds it? It’s like a virus or food poisoning. It needs to be controlled. But how?
“Stengel argues that the U.S. government should sometimes protect citizens by exposing ‘weaponized information, false information’ that is polluting the ecosystem. But ultimately, the defense of truth must be independent of a government that many people mistrust. ‘There are inherent dangers in having the government be the verifier of last resort,’ he argues.”
By the way, Stengel is not the fount of truth-telling, as he and Ignatius like to pretend. Early in the Ukraine crisis, Stengel delivered a rant against RT that was full of inaccuracies or what you might call “fake news.”
Yet, what Stengel and various mainstream media outlets appear to be arguing for is the creation of a “Ministry of Truth” managed by mainstream U.S. media outlets and enforced by Google, Facebook and other technology platforms.
In other words, once these supposedly responsible outlets decide what the “truth” is, then questioning that narrative will earn you “virtual” expulsion from the marketplace of ideas, possibly eliminated via algorithms of major search engines or marked with a special app to warn readers not to believe what you say, a sort of yellow Star of David for the Internet age.
And then there’s the possibility of more direct (and old-fashioned) government enforcement by launching FBI investigations into media outlets that won’t toe the official line. (All of these “solutions” have been advocated in recent weeks.)
On the other hand, if you do toe the official line that comes from Stengel’s public diplomacy shop, you stand to get rewarded with government financial support. Stengel disclosed in his interview with Ignatius that his office funds “investigative” journalism projects.

Dec 3, 2016

McCarthyism Is Breaking Out All Over — Paul Craig Roberts

By Paul Craig Roberts, December 2, 2016


Seasoned journalist, White House official, and historian Pat Buchanan has responded to the Washington Post’s fake news about the independent journalists on the 200 List being Russian agents by reminding us that the US government has always been a major disseminator of fake news. http://original.antiwar.com/buchanan/2016/12/01/fake-news-war-party-lies/
No one knows who is behind the newly created PropOrNot website that came up with the list of 200 “Russian agents,” but it is as likely as not the State Department funded National Endowment for Democracy, which has been peddling propaganda as fake news since its inception. Indeed, it was created for the purpose of destabilizing the Soviet Union. Of course the CIA could be involved, or Israel, or George Soros, or some neoconservative group, or some new government funded organization as a tool of the propaganda war that the Obama regime has vowed to fight.
By publicizing the fake list in the Washington Post, the presstitute newspaper has brought buckets of shame and condemnation upon its head, destroying in the process the thin shred of credibility that the Main Stream media still possessed.
As Pam Martens reports, another imbecile has now composed a list of 200 suspect professors who also dissent from the official bullshit fed to the American people. http://wallstreetonparade.com/2016/12/u-s-journalists-and-professors-appearing-on-rt-america-get-blacklisted/
The official government purveyors of fake news in the US and their presstitute agents are concerned that they are losing control over the explanations given to the American people.
In an effort to regain control over Americans’ minds, they are attempting to define dissenters and truth-tellers as “Russian agents.” Why “Russian agents”? Because they hope that their
fake news portrait of Russia as America’s deadly enemy has taken hold and will result in the public turning away from those of us labeled “Russian agents.”

Dec 2, 2016

Political Science’s “Theory of Everything”


From The UNZReviewNOVEMBER 30, 2016
The 7 “Blind” men and the US Elephant
The famous Indian story of the Blind Men and the Elephant is a metaphor highlighting that while one’s subjective experience can be true, it can also be limited by its failure to account for other truths or a totality of truth. A similar metaphor can be used to try to explain the hidden forces guiding the US Government
From 1975 to 1976 the Church Committee in the Senate and the Pike Committee in the House attempted unsuccessfully to curtail the power of US intelligence agencies. The Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), in particular, was investigated to see if it was a “rogue elephant” or under strict control of the President and the executive branch. However, besides some damning revelations outlined in the “whitewashed” report and some minor oversight changes, the “rogue elephant” was allowed to roam free.
Contemporary main-stream pundits now openly describe these hidden forces as a “shadow government,” a “corporatocracy” or a “deep state” controlling American politics. None however can do justice to what truly is an amorphous, complex and intricate web of overlapping entities. All who have tried to define who really governs America have essentially behaved as “blind” men.
The Sociologist
The first “blind” man was the Sociologist Professor C. Wright Mills. His book, The Power Elite, which was published in 1956, was the first full-scale study of the structure and distribution of power in the United States.
Mills examined how the concentration of power had pooled within three main hierarchies. “There are a few thousand people in the United States that control almost all aspects of society. These few thousand individuals hold leadership posts in the political, military, and economic spheres. An extremely high percentage of these individuals were educated in the same schools, come from upper-class families, belong to the same public clubs, and often the same secret societies. The members of this ruling group hold the same interests and values. And this group self-selects the majority of its members.”
According to Mills the three hierarchies of power – political, military, and economic – in the United States are interlocking and form a ruling class whose members, at the time, could generally be grouped into one of the following six distinct groups – the Social Register (today replaced by Forbes’s annual top 500 richest people in the world list), the Celebrities, the Chief Executives, the Corporate Rich, the Warlords and the Political Directorate.
The people at the highest levels of these institutions see each other socially and look after one another by doing each other favours because they not only serve together on the boards of directors of corporations, charitable organisations, and other bodies, but they also share a mutuality of life experiences, educational backgrounds, and economic situations. This self-interest is of course to the detriment of the American people who they derogatively refer to as the masses.
Mills highlights the “revolving door” between government, military and corporations that helps maintain the power elite’s dominance over American life. He explains that when cabinet members, senators, and top generals and other military officials retire, they usually become corporate executives; whereas conversely, corporate executives often become cabinet members and other key political appointees.
The power elite use the conglomerate media to broadcast their opinions to the masses,which believe, and regurgitate what the conglomerate media run by the elites, feed them. The masses are merely easily manipulated spectators led to believe that they are making the decisions: “This is why there won’t be change in the values and course of direction of the United States. One of the biggest myths of American society is that the middle class has influence on which direction and course our society takes. The American middle class does not have interests or values in common with the power elites that control and run US society.”
A 19th century Cassandra, Mills’ dire omen on how the power elite would gradually but collusively gain control of every aspect of life was an amazingly accurate analysis of the true nature of power and privilege in America.
The Law Enforcer
The second “blind” man was former FBI agent Dan Smoot. His self-published book,The Invisible Government, which was omitted from The New York Times Best Sellers List of 1962, sold over 1 million copies.
Smoot’s book charts the gradual infiltration of the US Government by the secret society known as the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR). The CFR was established in 1921 by Colonel Edward M. House, who had links to “international bankers in New York” as well as “great financial institutions.”

DESPERATION: The Deep State’s Attempt To CRUSH India’s Gold Demand

via SilverDoctors, December 2, 2016
Given that Deep State operatives can do nothing to increase western gold supply, their only options are to somehow discover supply elsewhere, and/or to CRUSH gold demand.
The manner in which India’s demonetization was carried out indicates some kind of desperation.
It indicates to us that the bullion banking cabal is coming up against the wall, and that there is SEVERE supply – demand stress in the global gold market that is rapidly becoming non-containable…
The primary objective of the Indian currency demonetization was to sharply reduce gold demand in the world’s most important retail market, India, one that is controlled by the Deep State oligarchy via a captured agent, its Prime Minister [Modi]. The manner in which the demonetization was carried out indicates some kind of desperation…
Indian Demonetization Denotes Severe Stress in the Global Gold Market
By Stewart Dougherty
It is becoming clear that the Indian currency demonetization is actually a planned attack on Indian gold demand, launched to disrupt gold prices and discredit gold as an asset class. The attack was required to alleviate severe stress in the global gold market that is becoming increasingly difficult for the Deep State controllers to contain.
For two decades, physical gold has been migrating from the west to the east in increasing quantities. Numerous reports cross-confirm that the world’s leading refineries are operating at capacity to convert western gold into the kilo products demanded by Asian buyers. Refiners also confirm that the sourcing of western gold has become problematic, as supplies dry up in the face of voracious world, and particularly eastern demand.
Western central bankers and their Deep State handlers have made it clear that they intend to transition to a cashless society. However, they are not yet ready to make this transition. Therefore, their current focus is to start the process by eliminating high-denomination currency, such as Euro 500 and USD 50 and 100 notes. At the same time, they are working to digitize the payment infrastructure, a prerequisite to the elimination of cash.
Their problem is the steady awakening of the people to the disturbing implications of a cashless society, and to the assault on human liberty it represents. The Deep State oligarchs must implement their agenda before the people mobilize to prevent it from being imposed upon them.
The Deep State oligarchs understand that the western governments they commandeer are bankrupt. To continue operations, they must tap into the people’s private wealth for funding. In fact, the IMF has produced a position paper recommending a “one off capital levy of 10%” (a 10% wealth tax), to deal with western governments’ intractable fiscal problems. The authors of this paper state that the “levy” must be imposed at night and by total surprise, to prevent citizens from being able to take any steps to avoid it.
This type of ambush is exactly what just happened in India, with its shock demonetization.

Nov 29, 2016

Worried You Are Putin's Pawn? Mainstream Media's Checklist For Avoiding Fake News

From ZeroHedge

No one outside of a few obsessed cranks would’ve noticed it if the Washington Post hadn’t given it front page prominence last week: a formerly obscure web site, propornot.com, which purports to identify a “Russian active measures” campaign with some very specific goals in mind As Post “reporter” Craig Timberg put it:
“The flood of ‘fake news’ this election season got support from a sophisticated Russian propaganda campaign that created and spread misleading articles online with the goal of punishing Democrat Hillary Clinton, helping Republican Donald Trump and undermining faith in American democracy, say independent researchers who tracked the operation.”
While the Post piece doesn’t link directly to the propornot site – because doing so would’ve exposed its laughably amateurish “methodology” for all to see – Timberg does mention their list of online Boris Badenovs, including not only Antiwar.com but also the Drudge Report, WikiLeaks, David Stockman’s Contra Corner, the Ron Paul Institute, LewRockwell.com, Counterpunch, Zero Hedge, Naked Capitalism, Truthdig, Truth-out, and a host of others. These sites, according to the Post, not only promoted a barrage of “fake news” with the aim of defeating Mrs. Clinton, but they did so at the behest of a “centrally-directed” (per propornot) intelligence operation undertaken by the Russians. So what did this “fake news” consist of? Timberg “reports”:
“Russia’s increasingly sophisticated propaganda machinery – including thousands of botnets, teams of paid human ‘trolls,’ and networks of websites and social-media accounts – echoed and amplified right-wing sites across the Internet as they portrayed Clinton as a criminal hiding potentially fatal health problems and preparing to hand control of the nation to a shadowy cabal of global financiers. The effort also sought to heighten the appearance of international tensions and promote fear of looming hostilities with nuclear-armed Russia.”
Never mind that it was Hillary Clinton herself who heightened international tensions by threatening military retaliation against the Russians for supposedly unleashing via WikiLeaks a flood of embarrassing emails. In a speech touted as outlining her foreign policy platform, she railed:
“You’ve seen reports. Russia’s hacked into a lot of things. China’s hacked into a lot of things. Russia even hacked into the Democratic National Committee, maybe even some state election systems. So, we’ve got to step up our game. Make sure we are well defended and able to take the fight to those who go after us.

“As President, I will make it clear, that the United States will treat cyber attacks just like any other attack. We will be ready with serious political, economic and military responses.”
According to the “experts” at propornot – granted anonymity by Timberg due to alleged fear of “Russian hackers” – to so much as note this clear threat is to brand oneself as a “Russian agent of influence.”
And what about Mrs. Clinton’s health problems – was reporting on this driven by Russian spies embedded in the alternative media? Or was it occasioned by this video, which saw her falling to the ground after leaving the 9/11 ceremony early? Are the folks at propornot and their fans at the Washington Post saying the amateur videographer who took that footage is a Russian secret agent? Were the television networks and other outlets that showed the footage “useful idiots,” to employ a favorite cold war smear revived by propornot? Given their criteria for labeling people agents of the Kremlin, the answer to these questions has to be yes – and now we are falling down the rabbit hole, in a free-fall descent into lunacy.

Propornot’s “criteria” for inclusion on their blacklist is actually an ideological litmus test: if you hold certain views, you’re in the pay of the Kremlin, or else an “unwitting agent – as former CIA head Mike Morell said of Trump. If you say anything at all positive about Russia or Putin – or a long list of entities, like China or “radical political parties in the US or Europe” (does this include the GOP?) – it’s a dead giveaway. We’re told to “investigate this by searching for mentions of, for example, ‘russia’, on their site by Googling for ‘site:whateversite.com Russia’, and seeing what comes up.”
If only Sherlock Holmes had had Google at his disposal, those detective stories would’ve been a lot shorter!

The propornot site is filled with complex graphs, and the text is riddled with “scientific”-sounding phrases, but when you get right down to it their “methodology” boils down to this: if you don’t fit within a very narrow range of allowable opinion, either falling off the left edge or the right edge, you’re either a paid Russian troll or else you’re being “manipulated” by forces you don’t understand and don’t want to understand.
Did you cheer on Brexit? You’re Putin’s pawn!

Are you worried about “World War III, nuclear devastation, etc.” instead of being content in the knowledge that their preferred policy – unmitigated hostility toward Russia — would “just result in a Cold War 2 and Russia’s eventual peaceful defeat, like the last time”? Well, then, clearly you’re either on Putin’s payroll, or else you’d like to be.

Other proscribed opinions include: “gold standard nuttery and attacks on the US dollar,” believing “the mainstream media can’t be trusted,” and “anti-‘globalism.’” And to underscore their complete lack of self-awareness, we’re told that additional warning signs of Putinism are “hyperbolic alarmism” and “generally ridiculous over-the-top assertions.”

In their world, it isn’t hyperbolic alarmism to point to ramshackle Russia, with a GDP equal to Spain’s and a declining military budget that pales before our own, as an existential threat to the West. And if you’re a reporter for the Washington Post, which has destroyed what reputation it had by effectively becoming the house organ of the Democratic National Committee, generally ridiculous overt-the-top assertions, such as those proffered by propornot, are “news.”
The Post piece also cites an article published on the “War On The Rocks” web site (which is exactly what it sounds like). The authors, a triumvirate of neocons, avers that they’ve been “tracking” “Russian propaganda” efforts since 2014, and they’ve concluded that the Grand Goal of the Russkies is to “Erode trust between citizens and elected officials and democratic institutions” – as if this process isn’t occurring naturally due to the depredations of a corrupt and arrogant political class.

Another insidious theme of Russian “active measures” as identified by these geniuses is “Stoking fears over the national debt, attacking institutions such as the Federal Reserve, and attempts to discredit Western financial experts and business leaders.” So we mustn’t talk about the national debt – because to do so brands one as a cog in Putin’s propaganda machine. Gee, based on these criteria, we can only conclude that every vaguely conservative politician running for office in the last decade or so is part of the Vast Russian Conspiracy, not to mention numerous economists.

And that’s not all – not by a long shot. Here’s a list of more Forbidden Topics we’re not supposed to discuss, except maybe in whispers in the privacy of our own homes: “Police brutalityracial tensions, protests, anti-government standoffsonline privacy concerns, and alleged government misconduct are all emphasized [by the Vast Russian Conspiracists – ed.] to magnify their scale and leveraged to undermine the fabric of society.” After all, Russia Today is “emphasizing” these issues – so mum’s the word!

Nov 28, 2016

Castro Was Not Who You Thought He Was


From TheDollarVigilante, November 26, 2016 


Castro is dead, but he achieved his purpose, which was to aggravate the Cold War, provide a test case for communism and frighten people about incipient nuclear missile exchanges.
His passing marks the end of the first phase of the Cold War. Now it is very obvious that a second phase is being prepared.
Tensions between Russia and the US are being continually heightened… and no, they are still ongoing even with the election of Trump who, under the guidance of Henry “War Criminal” Kissinger, has pledged his full support for NATO while Putin has replied that he will crush NATO.
These tensions are mainly initiated by the US and Britain. In other words it is the Anglosphere that has been responsible for so many wars including the World Wars.
Castro provides us with an example of how these trends – which we regularly analyze – work.
With an academic history that included intensive Jesuit schooling and later on, the backing of the US military and intel community, Castro was positioned to do what he did (take over Cuba) and he was generously funded as well.
Castro was raised up on purpose. Either that or we are to think that the CIA and other intel agencies drastically misjudged Castro and believed him to be a freedom fighter when he was actually a dictator-in-waiting who would preside over an increasingly totalitarian system of government. Are they really so naïve?
When the “Russian Revolution” was raging, author G. Edward Griffin points out that Wall Street tycoons journeyed to what would become the Soviet Union to learn where they might direct their cash.
They were disguised as Red Cross workers and all of their resources went to the “Red” – communists – Russians who won the war with Wall Street’s help.
This is always the way it works in the West. The banking controllers use a Hegelian dialectic to control the world and generate additional globalism.
In other words, they need an enemy to provide the justification for additional international authoritarianism. Castro was probably groomed from a child to fulfill this role.
He was raised in wealthy circumstances in Cuba and attended Jesuit schools – where no doubt his preparation as a world-renowned rebel commenced.
He was probably promised control of Cuba if he cooperated. Tall, energetic and reportedly a bully who liked to fight, he was surely chosen for his role early on – as those who build our false history usually identify and groom their future figureheads when they are young.
Supposedly Castro developed an attraction for socialist politics that resulted in his participation in revolutionary movements. More likely – as with Clinton and Obama – he was provided with a persona that he gradually realized.
Here’s his background from Wikipedia:
Aged six, Castro was sent to live with his teacher in Santiago de Cuba, before being baptized into the Roman Catholic Church at the age of eight. Being baptized enabled Castro to attend the La Salle boarding school in Santiago, where he regularly misbehaved, so he was sent to the privately funded, Jesuit-run Dolores School in Santiago.
In 1945 he transferred to the more prestigious Jesuit-run El Colegio de Belén in Havana. Although Castro took an interest in history, geography and debating at Belén, he did not excel academically, instead devoting much of his time to playing sport.
First the Jesuits got their hands on him and then of course DC itself. And on it goes …
We’re supposed to believe US officials were “shocked” when Castro turned out to be a communist rather than a corporatist.
We’re supposed to be surprised that the 600-plus assassination attempts “failed.”
We’re supposed to be indignant that Castro’s reign – not far away from one of the epicenters of world power in Washington DC – lasted well over half-a-century.
The shadowy globalists that occupy the topmost rung of our world surely wanted him in power. He brought the Cold War very close to the American people and provided an ongoing irritation combined with a boogeyman persona.
It was impossible to ignore the provocation of the USSR while Castro lived in Havana and regularly deepened his relationships with the communist world.
Castro served one more purpose as well.  As he aged while the Cold War suspiciously diminished and then suddenly ended, his image was gradually reshaped.
Instead of a brutal dictator, he was made out to be a man who wanted the best for his people and had simply decided on a misguided methodology.
In other words, his “heart was in the right place.” Thus, Castro was of use one last time to justify the practice of authoritarian politics. We can see this in the wake of his death (whenever he really died …).