Oct 062019
 October 6, 2019  Posted by at 10:14 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , , ,

Paul Gauguin Cow on the seashore 1886


Powell: Fed’s Job To Keep Economy In A ‘Good Place As Long As Possible’ (CNBC)
Auto Imports From Mexico Surge As US Sales Decline (WS)
The Ukraine Affair Is Damning, All Right – Just Not In The Way You Think (RT)
Trump Told Theresa May He Doubted Russia Was Behind Skripal Poisoning (G.)
US Media Now Filled With Former Intelligence Agents (Rania Khalek)
Hong Kong Democrats To Challenge Mask Ban In Court (HKFP)
Hong Kong Mask Ban Spurs New Mass Protest On Sunday (BBC)
Epstein Victim Says Leslie Wexner “Responsible For What Happened To Me” (Hill)
24 State Attorneys General Launch Legal Challenge Against Purdue Pharma (Hill)



This is so incredibly stupid and nobody calls him out over it.

Powell: Fed’s Job To Keep Economy In A ‘Good Place As Long As Possible’ (CNBC)

Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell described the U.S. economy on Friday as being solid, noting the central bank must do what it can to keep it there. “While not everyone fully shares economic opportunities and the economy faces some risks, overall it is— as I like to say— in a good place,” Powell said in prepared remarks delivered at a “Fed Listens” event in Washington. The event is part of a monetary policy communication review by the Fed. “Our job is to keep it there as long as possible.” Powell’s comments came after a raft of disappointing data releases this week. On Tuesday, the Institute for Supply Management said U.S. manufacturing contracted to its weakest level in a decade.

The ISM also said Thursday that the U.S. services sector grew at its slowest pace since August 2016. The Labor Department, meanwhile, reported weaker-than-expected jobs growth for September. This batch of weaker-than-forecast economic numbers led traders to ratchet up their bets on easier monetary policy from the Fed. Market expectations for a rate cut later this month are around 80%, according to the CME Group’s FedWatch tool. “While we believe our strategy and tools have been and remain effective, the U.S. economy, like other advanced economies around the world, is facing some longer-term challenges—from low growth, low inflation, and low interest rates,” Powell said, adding the Fed is “examining strategies” that will help it achieve its inflation goal of 2%.

Read more …

Something ain’t happening.

Auto Imports From Mexico Surge As US Sales Decline (WS)

Automakers continue to shift their production base from the U.S. to Mexico, where labor costs pale in comparison with those in the U.S., despite growing opposition from U.S. auto workers and their unions. U.S. imports of new vehicles from Mexico surged by 8% in the first three quarters of 2019, according to the auto manufacturers association AIMA, released by Mexico’s National Institute of Statistics and Geography (INEGI). This surge has occurred even as total deliveries of vehicles to end-users in the US fell by 1.6%. Between January and September 2019, 2.03 million new vehicles were dispatched from assembly plants in Mexico to the U.S. market, 158,000 more than during the first three quarters of 2018.

In the last eight years, auto imports from Mexico have almost doubled, from 1.3 million in 2011 to 2.57 million last year, at annual growth rates of between 6.3% and 13.9%. Barring any major supply chain hiccups, the U.S. is on track to import over 2.7 million new vehicles from Mexico this year. The latest figures cement Mexico’s position as number one exporter of automobiles to the US, ahead of Canada in second place. According to AIMA, 16% of the 12.7 million cars and other light vehicles delivered in the U.S. in the first three quarters of 2019 were assembled in Mexico.

Read more …

Nebojsa Malic, senior writer at RT: “It’s curious how the same treatment was not given a few months ago to the anti-Trump text messages of FBI employees Peter Strzok and Lisa Page..”

The Ukraine Affair Is Damning, All Right – Just Not In The Way You Think (RT)

Democrats say texts and transcripts involving US officials dealing with Ukraine prove President Donald Trump should be impeached. What they actually confirm, however, is the extent to which the US treats Ukraine as a vassal. At the heart of the latest media firestorm are the text messages between US diplomats and Trump’s personal attorney Rudy Giuliani. House Democrats seeking to impeach Trump have already sent a subpoena to the White House seeking more documents, and their allies in the media have proclaimed the texts to be “damning.” Much of the brouhaha centers on messages from Bill Taylor, charge d’affaires at the US Embassy in Kiev, who is the only one to suggest the military aid to Ukraine and President Volodymyr Zelensky’s meeting with Trump are being “conditioned” on investigations of Hunter Biden and Ukraine’s role in 2016 meddling in the US election.

In one of the exchanges with US ambassador to the EU, Gordon Sondland, dated September 9, Taylor spells out what would become the Democrats’ argument for impeachment: “As I said on the phone, I think it’s crazy to withhold security assistance for help with a political campaign.” Sondland’s admonishment of Taylor – “I believe you are incorrect about President Trump’s intentions. The President has been crystal clear: no quid pro quo’s of any kind.” – is somehow being held up as an admission of wrongdoing, along with his request for a phone call instead of continued texts. Just like that, all of a sudden, the controversy about the so-called “whistleblower” who may have colluded with House Intelligence Committee chair Adam Schiff (D-California) before filing his complaint – based on hearsay – is declared “irrelevant” and the texts are held up as the Holy Grail of impeachment proceedings.

It’s curious how the same treatment was not given a few months ago to the anti-Trump text messages of FBI employees Peter Strzok and Lisa Page, when the entire media establishment twisted itself into pretzels to explain that when Strzok said “we’ll stop” Trump from becoming president what he really meant, you see, was something totally innocuous and not sinister at all. House Republicans have blasted the diplomatic texts as “cherry-picked” by the other party, and argued that the closed-doors testimony of Kurt Volker, former US special envoy to Ukraine who participated in the exchanges, painted a completely different picture. Reading the transcript of Volker’s opening statement, obtained and published Friday by investigative reporter John Solomon and the Federalist, seems to back that claim.

Read more …

Sacrilege. BTW, where is Skripal? Hiding out with Wexner and Maxwell?

Trump Told Theresa May He Doubted Russia Was Behind Skripal Poisoning (G.)

Donald Trump disputed that Russia was behind the attempted murder of a former Russian spy in a tense call with Theresa May, it has emerged. Despite the widespread conclusion that Vladimir Putin’s regime was behind the poisoning of Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia last year, the US president is said to have spent 10 minutes expressing his doubts about Russian involvement. According to the Washington Post, Trump “harangued” May about Britain’s contribution to Nato in a phone call with Britain’s then prime minister in the summer of last year, before disputing Russian involvement in the Skripal case.

“Trump totally bought into the idea there was credible doubt about the poisoning,” said a figure briefed on the call. “A solid 10 minutes of the conversation is spent with May saying it’s highly likely and him saying he’s not sure.” The Skripals were left fighting for their lives after the novichok attack in Salisbury, while a policeman was also left seriously ill. A second policeman was recently discovered to have been injured in the attack. Two Russian agents, Alexander Petrov and Ruslan Boshirov, were identified as the likely culprits. However, they later appeared on Russia’s state-funded TV station RT, claiming they visited the “wonderful” English city as tourists to see its cathedral.

Read more …

Any day now, CNN can start a spook soccer team.

US Media Now Filled With Former Intelligence Agents (Rania Khalek)

After years in the shadows overseeing espionage, kill programs, warrantless wiretapping, entrapment, psyops and other covert operations, national security establishment retirees are are turning to a new line of work where they can carry out their imperial duties. That is, propagandizing the public on cable news. Reborn as cable news pundits, these people are cashing in. So many years working in the dark, only to emerge in the studio lights of the same networks that rail all day everyday against state TV from countries that America hates. I’m talking about people like… Below is but a partial list of prominent former spooks turned mainstream media pundits and analysts, to say nothing of the even greater numbers of retired generals the network continuously rely on.

• Former CIA Director John Brennan who is now an NBC News senior national security and intelligence analyst.
• Fran Townsend, former homeland security advisor to George W. Bush. She’s now a CBS News senior national security analyst.

But CNN takes the cake — it’s the biggest spook show of all.
• Jim Clapper, former Director of National Intelligence, now a CNN national security analyst.
• Retired General Michael Hayden, former director of the CIA and the NSA, now a CNN national security analyst.
• Asha Rangappa, former FBI special agent, now CNN legal analyst.
• James Gagliano, a retired FBI supervisory special agent, now a CNN law enforcement analyst.
• Tony Bliken, former deputy secretary of state and former deputy national security advisor, and now CNN global affairs analyst.
• Mike Rogers, former chair of the House Intelligence Committee, now CNN national security commentator.
• Samantha Vinograd senior advisor to the national security advisor under President Obama, now CNN national security analyst.
• Steven Hall, retired CIA chief of Russia operations, now a CNN national security analyst.
• Philip Mudd, former CIA counter-terrorism official, now CNN counter-terrorism analyst.

…Welcome to the spook show!

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Kyle Bass on Twitter: “Bank runs all over Hong Kong now. ATM machines running out of cash but there is something more important…failed leader carrie lam(b) can now officially confiscate bank accounts and assets without recourse. The HK legal system is essentially gone.”

Challenge was already thrown out by the High Court in the meantime.

Hong Kong Democrats To Challenge Mask Ban In Court (HKFP)

Hong Kong’s pro-democracy lawmakers will challenge the newly imposed mask ban in court, arguing that Chief Executive Carrie Lam broke the law when she bypassed the legislature. Filed jointly by all 24 democrats, the lawsuit targeted the Emergency Regulations Ordinance (ERO) – the colonial-era law that grants the city’s leader and her council of advisors wide-ranging powers to “make regulations on occasions of emergency or public danger.” Democrats called for the mask ban to be suspended, before a proper judicial review hearing can be held. The court will hear their first round of arguments at Sunday 10am.

The lawmakers said that Lam “circumvented” the constitutional framework of One Country, Two Systems when she invoked the ERO to ban facial coverings at legal and unauthorised protests from Saturday. “Since the Handover, there has never been an occasion when the chief executive enacted legislation without going through LegCo,” said Civic Party lawmaker Dennis Kwok. On Friday, the High Court dismissed a bid by activists Lester Shum and “Long Hair” Leung Kwok-hung to suspend the law, saying that their case was not strong enough to outweigh the government’s rationale. Kwok said that the democrats’ lawsuit was different, as they had special standing as lawmakers to make constitutional arguments.

Read more …

Lam: “We cannot allow rioters any more to destroy our treasured Hong Kong.”

That is HER treasured HK, not THEIRS?

Hong Kong Mask Ban Spurs New Mass Protest On Sunday (BBC)

Thousands of anti-government protesters have turned out for marches in Hong Kong despite pouring rain, spurred into action by a government ban on masks. Many defiantly covered their faces as they set off from several points in a co-ordinated response to the ban, which the High Court upheld on Sunday. Metro services, which were attacked by rioters on Friday, have resumed in some parts of the Chinese city. The masks have become the latest focus in months of pro-democracy protests. Police use of live bullets against protesters this week, leaving two people injured, has also fuelled the unrest. Chief executive Carrie Lam introduced the ban by invoking powers dating back to colonial rule by the British.

Demonstrators fear that democratic rights are being eroded in the semi-autonomous territory under Chinese rule. Many more people have turned out than on Saturday, when a small march was held in the aftermath of Friday’s rioting. Two groups set off at the same time from the Causeway Bay and Tsim Sha Tsui districts, the South China Morning Post reports. Shops could be seen closing early while luxury and chain stores were closed in Causeway Bay. On Friday, both businesses and railway stations were attacked by rioters. Hosun Lee, a protester in Causeway Bay, told AFP news agency he feared more emergency laws were on the way. “The anti-face mask law is the first step,” he said.

Ms Lam vowed on Saturday to prevent further violence, saying: “We cannot allow rioters any more to destroy our treasured Hong Kong.” She justified the law against masks as a response to the demonstrators’ “extreme violence” which was, she said, endangering Hong Kong’s public safety. A second legal challenge to the mask ban, which was brought by opposition legislators, was rejected by the High Court. The legislators had argued that the prohibition was unconstitutional because it denied the rights of free expression and free assembly.

Read more …

Wexner is walking around free, as is Ghislaine. Not sure about Skripal.

Epstein Victim Says Leslie Wexner “Responsible For What Happened To Me” (Hill)

A woman allegedly attacked by Jeffrey Epstein said she holds Victoria’s Secret billionaire Leslie Wexner “responsible for what happened to me” because she was staying on a property monitored by Wexner and his wife and guarded by his security team, the Washington Post reported. Maria Farmer stayed in a home that was a half-mile away from Wexner’s home in New Albany, Ohio during the summer of 1996 while she was creating two paintings for the film “As Good as it Gets.” Farmer was employed by Jeffrey Epstein at the time, and while she was staying in the house in Ohio, she alleges that Epstein and his associate Ghislaine Maxwell sexually assaulted her.

When she tried to leave the home after the alleged assault, Farmer said a security guard employed by Wexner told her “You aren’t leaving,” and “You’re not going anywhere.” She said another security guard later took her by the arm, and as she fought against him, he grabbed her so hard she bruised. Farmer said she also tried to call local police and the Franklin County Sheriff’s office. But Wexner had contracted with the office, and a person told her “we work for Wexner,” when she tried to report the crime, Farmer told the Washington Post. She also alleged that she was discouraged from leaving the house without the permission of Abigail Wexler, Leslie Wexler’s wife. She was later picked up by her father at the Washington home.

Read more …

“..Purdue gave up to $13 billion in company profits to the Sackler family.”

24 State Attorneys General Launch Legal Challenge Against Purdue Pharma (Hill)

US Attorneys General from 24 states and Washington, D.C. launched a lawsuit against Purdue Pharma this week in an attempt to block the OxyContin maker from avoiding thousands of lawsuits after filing for bankruptcy, Reuters reported. The state officials objected to Purdue Pharma’s request that a U.S. bankruptcy judge block the more than 2,600 lawsuits seeking billions in damages, according to court filings, Reuters reported. The lawsuits argue that the company, along with the Sackler family, were a catalyst in the opioid crisis across the country by not disclosing the addictive risks of opioids. “The Sacklers are billionaires, they are not bankrupt,” the Massachusetts attorney general, Maura Healey, told Reuters.

“They should not be allowed to use the filing to shield their assets.” Purdue filed for chapter 11 bankruptcy last month, after reaching a settlement between $10 billion and $12 billion for the thousands of plaintiffs involved in the lawsuits. The committee of attorneys who negotiated the settlement said the filing will not stop the company from finalizing the settlement. But Purdue sought the injunction to stop the lawsuits against the company because the Sackler family did not file for bankruptcy, Reuters reported. The Sacklers have offered to give control of Purdue to the plaintiffs and give at least $3 billion towards the settlement. The case filed this week by the state attorneys general also said Purdue gave up to $13 billion in company profits to the Sackler family.

Read more …





Home Forums Debt Rattle October 6 2019

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    Paul Gauguin Cow on the seashore 1886   • Powell: Fed’s Job To Keep Economy In A ‘Good Place As Long As Possible’ (CNBC) • Auto Imports From Mexi
    [See the full post at: Debt Rattle October 6 2019]

    Dr. D

    What does a cow eat on the seashore?

    “Auto Imports From Mexico Surge As US Sales Decline (WS)”

    These aren’t just things, just widgets, I daresay such a move is the result of 10-20 year plans to move factories and supply chains there. And there is no stopping the opening of the doors when you do that, even into the face of an auto recession. (Yes, the U.S. is as flooded with cars as it is retail space. We could stop making them for 5-10 years and get by)

    So they make it sound like this is a choice. They just shipped some widgets. No choice. And this is why stability and visibility is more precious than gold to corporations. (thus why gov’t rules being slapped on and off with each season, personality, and fad is so destructive.)

    “their allies in the media have proclaimed the texts to be “damning.”

    The media is so discredited, if they were cake recipes, they’d be called ‘damning.’ Just yesterday, the NYT made up their entire article. –Hey bub, you can ALREADY just call up whoever on the phone, who you ALREADY know will say whatever you want, though an outlier, and write a real article that will do the same thing. Lying by focus, done for decades. Did you really have to just make it up? This is news?

    Yes. This is how divorced from reality they have become. Anyway, that’s why there’s less sense in discussing it, though we have to. Orlov had the same impression: Zelinsky and Ukraine are a nobody, Trump told him if he wants anything, don’t call: you’re the EU’s problem. The West is still living a fantasy: although he said, “talk to Russia if you want anything done,” Russia doesn’t want anything to do with Ukraine. It’s a money pit Nuland, Brzezinski and the dummies at the CFR tried to poison and get Russia to eat. They won’t. They could care less. Never have the CFR and all think tanks been made to look so stupid. So as a neighbor, they’ll send a team, they could even annex Donbass, but why would you take on the world’s most corrupt nation, AND filled with carefully engineered violent, rabid, western, Russia-hating Nazis (for a change, no metaphor or hyperbole, wiki Banderas) You idiots believed the EU and particularly the Anglos, both of which have double-crossed and broken every treaty they’ve ever signed. And now you’re being double-crossed, broken, and sucked dry. Were there no history books in Ukraine? Did the USSR not tell you not to trust the lying, corrupt West? Ah well.

    Despite the widespread conclusion” by the media, which is now mostly CIA and MI6 (see above), somehow he didn’t slavishly trust the source of the “WMD and ties to al-qaeda crowd.” How guache to have the brains of a moo-cow. Get thee to a University and have that fixed so you can believe what we schmarty-guys do.

    “Hong Kong Democrats To Challenge Mask Ban In Court (HKFP)”

    The courts again, jumping into politics to decide when enough is too much. “Oh wait: there’s no law, we just all felt you’d gone too far.” That’s like running up and down the football pitch with a new sideline painter whenever you want a play to be in or out of bounds. …And in another sense, what can you do? The idea that anyone is truly objective is an illusion, and the courts have always made up the law anyway they wished, through Martin Armstrong back to the Star Chamber. You have to aspire to better, is all. But aspiring to better is within men, not within law.

    “We cannot allow rioters any more to destroy our treasured Hong Kong.”

    Well she does say “OUR”, as in, “why don’t you look at what you’re doing to the city we all love.” They don’t appear to have any intent of negotiating. They will only accept surrender, and a total loss of face for the central government(s). I’m not sure that’s wise. …What would you do if Brexiteers and Black-clad protesters were waving the Chinese and Communist flags while vowing to topple the government? Oh wait: they are. In any case, it will go GREAT for the CIA and MI6 to destroy China and move the Banking center to Singapore, but it will be ruinous for Hong Kong. So they’re waving the right flags and singing the right anthems: they’re going to die in the service of BoJo and Trump. See Ukraine and their reading assignment, above.

    “A woman attacked by Jeffrey Epstein … and Leslie Wexner … summer of 1996.”

    And nobody knew nothin’. So when do we arrest and try the policemen in Ohio for dereliction of duty, taking bribes, contributing to a felony, and telling the Ohio Governor too? I’ll wait. We knew back then, but it was a “conspiracy theory.” Funny ol’ world how all the myths are true, which anyone could know if they would look half a second and read a few documents, you know, with your eyes. They won’t. They won’t look, and they’ll say they know it’s not true because they didn’t do any research or investigation at all.

    “They should not be allowed to use the filing to shield their assets.”

    Back to courts. The whole POINT of a corporation is to shield assets, and if you break that, you will gravely harm modern capitalism. However, you also cannot commute(?) assets in order to put them out of reach of your creditors. If you could, every company would sell their factory to the owner for $1 the day before bankruptcy.

    They say the Constitution wasn’t made to deal with modern capitalism and rules, but I’d go the other way on that: under Hamilton, to get a corporate license, you needed to sell Congress on the social good you would create, and could be easily revoked, exactly because they knew how dangerous the West India Company could be, like Epstein and Blackwater, with their own private army. Does Twitter want to explain how their product is improving the peace, prosperity, and tenor of discussion to Congress and the American people? Does Wells Fargo want to explain how creating a few hundred thousand fake accounts, and then feloniously billing people for them is a social good of the people? I think not. Maybe the problem is that we’re not following the Constitution, that is to say, Federal LAW, nearly enough.


    If ‘impeachment’ is just a word used by the inquiry then other people could use it in the same way.

    The Republicans in Congress could have an ‘Impeach Adam Schiff’ inquiry!

    It may sound ludicrous but that is the point. It suggests the farcical nature of the Democrats actions.

    It would also have a real point. It seems that Schiff is misrepresenting any evidence given so this would provide a focus to pointing this out, documenting it, and disseminating it.


    • Auto Imports From Mexico Surge As US Sales Decline (WS)

    If the auto worker don’t make enough money to buy a car, then who will buy a car?
    What will happen when the banks/lenders stop buying/giving car loans to people who do not have enough income to pay off the car loans?
    I guess the number don’t lie. Its already happening.
    …. have an ‘Impeach Adam Schiff’ inquiry!

    Now. That’s a great tit-for-tat.
    Maybe the Republicans read this blog.


    Free advise is not accepted. You got to charge a consultation fee.


    “Nebojsa Malic, senior writer at RT: “It’s curious how the same treatment was not given a few months ago to the anti-Trump text messages of FBI employees Peter Strzok and Lisa Page..”

    Because they were not colluding or extorting a foreign government against Trump as Trump did and is doing.


    Because they were not colluding or extorting a foreign government against Trump as Trump did and is doing.

    That is funny. A conspiracy against a president (elected and/or sitting) from within American borders, by intelligence, media and political opponents is fine, but when that same president has an entirely legal phone call with someone not inside those borders, anyone is free to engage in even more conspiracies, spying, twisting, you name it.

    We read the transcript, we’ve seen the video, we know the whistleblower CIA operative’s “complaint”, and we know there’s nothing there. Endlessly repeating that there is doesn’t change that. We’ve all seen it.

    Enter whistleblower CIA operative no. 2 stage left.

    But it will still be the same phone call.


    It is my growing conviction that there is one and only one unifying ring to bind them all: everyone is terrified of going to jail if their chosen hero — President or Speaker of the House — fails in this ultimately judicial jousting contest. Corruption that thick not only stinks but sinks.

    At some point they will no longer be able to fight the war on TV/twitternet (is 2 a woid! and it’s mine! mine!!!!!) and legally binding conclusions will have to be reached. Before that gets to happen, there will be a war. Not just a distracting war, but an in-your-face engaging war, with kids being conscripted, power grids being cyber-sabotaged, etc…

    We’ve had our fun with our WWI Redux aka War on Terror (a war we basically waged on ourselves but with foreigners as the victims because we outsource everything anymore), and our deferred-at-all-costs Wiemar Republic inflationary period (self-inflicted rather than imposed by some schmucks in a place called Versailles). We’ve ramped up our campaign against our own civil liberties, and militarily blitzkrieged our way backwards into a position of virtually unconditional defeat.

    We can’t win; we know it; therefore we must of course FIGHT! FIGHT! FIGHT!

    It’s what we *do*.

    Bring Our Boys Back Home 😉


    And when I say things like that, the reaction from a lot of people will predictably be that I am a Trump supporter. But I’m not at all. It’s just that your story makes no sense whatsoever. Read the transcript. He doesn’t ask for dirt on Biden at any point in the call. He mentions ‘favor’ in connection with the Crowdstrike server, which he says may well be in Ukraine. The difference is the REAL transcript:


    Vs what the media made of it (where did the intervening text go?):


    It took Trump 300 words between the word “favor” and the word “Biden”. You really have to quit watching CNN et al and reading the yellow MSM.

    This is not even a serious discussion anymore.


    Turfkiller: whether your comments are personally sincere or just passing half-hearted swipes from a paid troll (ooh! ad hominem speculations from bosco! bailiff, smack his peepee!), the result is the same: you steadily erode the liberal name-brand with every remark. I recommend you either become more entertaining or quit while you’re ahead.

    boscohorowitz, lifelong liberal

    John Day

    Democracy is the coat of paint applied for PR purposes to the Imperial State.​ Charles Hugh Smith
    ​ ​If we step back from the histrionics of impeachment and indeed, the past four years of political circus, we have to wonder if America’s democracy is little more than an elaborate simulation, a counterfeit democracy that matches our counterfeit capitalism (Matt Stoller’s term).
    ​ ​If we review the mechanics of our “democracy,” we find that swapping which party controls Congress doesn’t really change the policies of The Imperial State, the central state that oversees America’s global commercial and geopolitical empire…
    ​ ​Bush I was the ideal Imperial State president because he understood the need for the velvet glove of diplomacy, the most important element of which is an orchestrated demonstration of Imperial restraint. This also includes healthy dollops of PR about the sanctity of our alliances, which are heavily promoted as the acme of win-win cooperation, etc. He also understood the essential role of America’s commercial Empire: the US dollar, US banking and US corporate interests around the world.
    ​ ​Imperial State handlers cannot tolerate loose-cannon presidents, those who keep their own council and who act outside the “recommended guidelines,” for example, trying to make peace with rivals and enemies that the Imperial State cultivates as “enemies” for its own purposes.
    ​ ​John F. Kennedy appeared to be the ideal Imperial State president: wealthy Eastern Establishment, Harvard, combat military service, informal diplomatic experience via his father’s connections, an enthusiastic supporter of the Imperial State’s Cold War and a youthful politician with superb communication skills who the mass media fell for hook, line and sinker.
    ​ ​Once Kennedy soured on the CIA, things got dicey. The ideal president quickly became less ideal as his independence grew.
    ​ ​The Imperial State and mass media always feared and hated Richard Nixon, a poker player who kept his cards hidden and who surrounded himself with loyalists and outsiders, a rogue politician who could upstage the Imperial State’s agenda by private diplomacy (opening relations with China) or expanding wars of choice (the invasion of Cambodia).
    ​ ​Nixon’s cabinet was well-stocked with Establishment pros, but they were largely figureheads when it came to the bold private diplomatic moves Nixon favored. In other words, Nixon was the Imperial State’s nightmare president.
    ​ ​Just to show that the Imperial State plays no favorites in party affiliations, the State and its media organs also hated Jimmy Carter, another independent who wandered outside the “recommended guidelines” and had to be destroyed via endless mockery and the undermining of his initiatives…
    ​ ​Bush II was no Bush I, but he followed orders and never strayed from the “recommended guidelines.” The same can be said of Bill Clinton and Barack Obama, telegenic communicators in the Kennedy mold.
    ​ ​Needless to say, the Imperial State and its media organs loathe Trump, the loosest cannon imaginable. Hillary Clinton had proven herself a reliable water carrier for the Imperial State, and so her election was elaborately planned and staged: potentially loose cannon Bernie Sanders was shivved in the primaries by the Democratic Party, and the champagne was chilled for Hillary’s victory.
    ​ ​Democracy is the coat of paint applied for PR purposes to the Imperial State. “Democracy” is only tolerated if it follows the approved script. The Republic is good PR, but the Empire makes the rules and the scripts that elected officials follow, and woe to anyone who wins an election they were supposed to lose or who strays too far from the “recommended guidelines.” (Imperial enemies must remain enemies until the Empire decides otherwise.)

    Former CIA Chief Brennan Unblinkingly Rewrites Entire Basis Of US Judicial System In One Short Sentence​:​
    In an interview on MSNBC, Brennan, unblinkingly states that “people are innocent, you know, until alleged to be involved in some kind of criminal activity.”


    Today is the calm before the storm of war strikes home. If there are any survivors, the winners will write the history. Clearly Donald Trump believes that corporate media, the intelligence community, the Democratic National Committee and its hired contractors particularly the British worked together to deny him his Presidency. They failed spectacularly. Together they showed completely the incompetence of the global Elite; greed, hubris, arrogance and self-righteousness. The Empire’s mental eunuchs particularly Democrat politicians simply cannot see reality. To do so would seal their fate. In the past when Empires collapsed, a civil or regional war would destroy the capitol. This time the prelude is particularly prolonged because Russia and China have nuclear weapons.

    The trigger for the final spasms may well be the Levant. The current Iraqi government is on the ropes. Riots with reported snipers killing participants are ongoing. Iraqi Shiite militias are on the border with Saudi Arabia and being bombed by Israel and could have assisted the Houthis attack on Amoco oil facilities. The USA is also occupying Eastern Syria with decrepit detention camps filled with thousands of ISIS families. Turkey may invade. Corporate Media is silent on this.

    Ukraine and Joe Biden in 2014 are important. This needs to be investigated. It is where Democracy was shafted and the final war of the Empire started.


    “If we step back from the histrionics of impeachment and indeed, the past four years of political circus, we have to wonder if America’s democracy is little more than an elaborate simulation”

    We’ve tolerated the existence of Gitmo torture camps for 18 years, not holding accountable a single major politician (that I can recall) who promised to end the horror. If we’re a democracy, than we are a blatantly evil people.

    Having known many Americans after living here for 63 years, I’d say that people are not evil but thoroughly overwhelmed by this tottering complex colossus called civilization, period. Democracy is a label. Chaos with ballot urns, as Carlyle said.

    We do what we’re told, most of us.

    Falling Rain


    “mental eunuchs”

    An enviable phrase. I’ma steal it when no one’s looking.

    At least they avoid this nightmare:

    How To Untangle Your Testicles

    Dr. D

    Bosco: thank you the honorable opposition. Take your party back if there’s anything I can do to help.

    Vet: Ominous. Yet not wrong. Somehow we will take a third direction, messy and long, completely unsatisfying for everyone. We deserve it, and still worse, so we may get off easy in the end.

    Democracy is presently an illusion, such illusion that ex-Presidents and Universities issue front-page reports on the sham and inspire no comment, no discussion, no change, yet it doesn’t have to be. The only thing that makes it a sham is the surrender and dereliction of duty by the people, which is now being remedied, but fruitlessly opposed. Each day the villains get revealed a little more, and the new generation growing up seeing nothing but lies gets a little more to voting (and fighting) age.


    I have no party. I camped with the Dems for some years because all the cool kids told me it was where it’s at. The last vestiges of my illusory belief in the DNC and the concept of socially integrated democratic republican governance, left when Bernie got his ass handed to him by an offer he couldn’t refuse. Lord knows how many people they threatened to kidnap and do evil things to.

    But even then, Bernie was mostly a symbolic candidate for me. His foreign policy was essentially no different that Hillary’s. He might have well have gotten us into the Mother of All Wars sooner, and more so, than the rest of them.

    Liberalism/conservative labels in today’s partisan politics are about as meaningful as food labels touting natural this/organic that.

    Oh, I have zero hope for either party reclaiming moral clarity or reliably focused power.

    I would have some hope, some faith in the “gradualism” that both partisan camps worship, if it weren’t that the entire physical basis for the survival of 7+ billions humans has been used up and already discarded. People are willing to gradually, grudgingly learn to get along with one another when there’s more than enough to go around. Lacking that: don’t make me nervous; I’m holding a baseball bat. (Obscure Joe Turner tune I learned from the mis-named Hi-Yo Silver from Fleetwood Mac’s Kiln House album circa 1970. I still prefer the Fleetwood version.) The baseball bat refers not our enjoyable magical words-at-a-distance exchanges here, but the street reality I perceive to be more common than not ten years from now.

    H Yo Silver

    Democracy? Meet me in ten years around some campfire with the people of my tribe, if I’m still alive that long. Democracy works on a village tribal scale. Beyond that, nada. Democracy on a larger scale than that has always been between slave-owning oligarchs and their plutocratic running mates.

    But I enjoy the fiddling, and don’t feel it is all frivolous. I learn things here, and knowledge is my favorite addiction after air, food, water, livable temperatures, and my wife.
    Let’s see if I can get this image to appear:

    It's just crazy enough that it might work, Doc!


    Didn’t think it would show. Hafta go here:


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