More fun in the Indispensable Nation: As we have all heard by now, according to Hillary, ardent of becoming National Basilisk, half of Trump’s supporters are evil and the other half losers, deplorables all. That is, she holds half of Americans in contempt. Unsurprisingly she said this in New York, which is barely America, and to a convention of sexual curiosities.
I frankly think her admirable. As she coughs, staggers convulses, lies, pilfers, sells favors and lapses into intermittent confusion, she still has the courage to tell America that she loathes half of it. That´s candor.
Give her credit for consistency. She is always mendacious, firmly in the pockets of Wall Street, Israel, the Neocon hawks, and the arms industry, never having accomplished anything on her own, always riding Bill’s coattails, having a disastrous record as SecState, always for sale. With her, we know what we will get. With Trump, it’s a roll of the very weird dice.
Ah, the Donald. While he unmistakably displays various presidential qualities–he can walk up stairs by himself, and his eyes usually point in the same direction–there is indeed a certain aleatory quality to the man. God knows what he might do. He shoots from the hip, saying all sorts of loopy but interesting things. Interesting if you live somewhere else. He talks unflatteringly about the other sex near open mikes, instead of away from them like everybody else.
The potential consequences of this are not easily grasped by those under fifty. The United States has been remarkably protected for decades. America’s wars are fought in other people’s countries. Except for 9/11 the public has never been subjected to the horrors routinely inflicted by America in Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria, and so on. Ever fewer Americans have been in a schoolyard fight, baited a hook, fired a gun, or lived a week in the woods. We are a coddled nation.
My saying this will bring forth much squeaking and gibbering to the effect that I am insecure and fantasizing about Marlboro Man, remembering a macho world that never was, a latent transgender and that I hate everybody. Only the last comes close.
But America is more fragile than it looks. Its people cannot feed themselves. The economy really can collapse. If civil unrest broke the link from farm to cities, in two weeks New Yorkers would be eating each other. Soft white urbanites eeeeking and squealing about guns cannot defend themselves. It is over. Watch. Trump, if elected, will be more interesting, Hillary a boring but more certain civilizational mortician, but both are chips floating on a fetid tide.
“We came, we saw…he died” boasted a beaming Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, speaking of the 2011 western overthrow of Libya’s leader Muammar Khadaffi.
She was, of course, shamelessly paraphrasing Caesar’s famous summary of his campaign around the Black Sea. Mrs. Clinton, who seems ordained to be America’s next president, should have been rather more cautious in admitting to murder.
This week marks the fifth anniversary of Khadaffi’s grisly death. The Libyan leader was fleeing in a motor convoy to reach friendly tribal territory when French warplanes and a US drone attacked and destroyed the vehicles. Wounded, Khadaffi crawled into a culvert where he was captured by French and US-backed rebels.
Khadaffi was severely beaten, then anally raped with a long knife. At least two bullets finally ended his suffering. Thus ended the colorful life of the man who wanted to be the second Nasser and leader of a united Arab world. His death was a warning to others trying to challenge the Mideast status quo I call the American Raj.
But he was also a dreamer who often had fanciful schemes, like the Great Manmade River to draw artesian water from the Sahara. He loved to insult his fellow Arab leaders, branding them cowards, thieves, and liars. Khadaffi was theatrical and flamboyant and loved to show off.
After spending an evening with Khadaffi in his Bedouin tent, I told him, tongue in cheek, “Leader, we may bomb you but I must confess our women think you are the most handsome and dashing Arab leader.” He beamed and showed me some of his Italian-tailored faux combat wear and kid-skin jump boots. At times he seemed like a kid in a toy store – zany but also serious and determined. According to his many critics, Khadaffi was a dangerous, anti-western megalomaniac.
He was also vilified and demonized by the western media, a process that happened to all third world leaders who refuse to accept western dictates.
Khadaffi was quietly cooperating with the US when the Arab Spring erupted in Tunisia. Secretary Hillary Clinton and her neocon advisors decided to seize advantage of Mideast turmoil and overthrow Khadaffi.
A new ‘color revolution’ was unleashed by the western powers. Protests were organized in Benghazi, always an anti-Khadaffi stronghold, by CIA, French intelligence, and Britain’s MI6. Western special forces attacked Libyan military positions. The UN was gulled into calling for ‘humanitarian intervention to supposedly save civilian lives.’
France led the military intervention. Khadaffi’s son, Seif, had claimed that his father had helped finance French president Nicholas Sarkozy’s election. The vindictive Sarkozy intended to shut up the Khadaffis.
Western special forces intervened behind the cover of a popular uprising. Khadaffi’s rag tag forces quickly collapsed and rebel groups seized power, murdering Khadaffi in the process.
The west got Libya’s high-grade oil and was rid of a thorn in its side. Khadaffi told me that if he were overthrown, Libya would splinter into its tribal mosaic – which is just what has happened. Chaos reigns as warlords backed by the US, France, Britain, Italy and Egypt – and a small ISIS contingent – fight over bleeding Libya. Decades of development that made Libya Africa’s leader in health care and education were wiped away.
Interestingly, the template for the western overthrow of Khadaffi – aka “regime change” – was next employed in Syria, with vastly more destructive results but less success. Expect to see more color revolutions when Mrs. Clinton takes over the White House.
Is the Iraqi city of Mosul on the border with Syria, as Mrs. Clinton averred during the third presidential debate?
Exactly no one has called her out on this. I guess you have to be Gary Johnson, rather than a former Secretary of State, for the mainstream media to start mocking you over your lack of geographical knowledge. And this was no inconsequential error: it’s supposedly key to her strategy that after “we” take Mosul we’re going to “press into Syria.”
Did seventeen US intelligence agencies say that the Russians hacked the Democratic National Committee’s server and John Podesta’s inbox, as Hillary Clinton asserted Wednesday night?
Mrs. Clinton’s claim here is worth going into in some depth. It came in the context of a question from Chris Wallace about her speech to a gaggle of bankers in which she said “My dream is a hemispheric common market with open trade and open borders.” She defended hersel “existential threat to our democracy” for a candidate of a major party to call the integrity of our elections into question – a bit of overreaching, since all Trump said was that he’d wait until the votes are counted before committing to accept the alleged result. And please recall that, after the Supreme Court decided that George W. Bush and not Al Gore was the duly elected President, Hillary said the former had been “selected, not elected.”
What’s really unprecedented, however, is how a major party candidate has accused her opponent of being, in effect, an agent of a foreign power. This has neverhappened – no, not ever. During the cold war, to be sure, there were some Republicans who accused the Democrats of being “soft” on Communism, but here Mrs. Clinton is clearly accusing Trump of enabling and “encouraging” “Russian espionage,” to use her phrase. Mr. Trump, says Hillary, is a traitor to his country. And our “fact-checking” media is silent, except for this guy – who, at any rate, has few compunctions about “going down that road.” I doubt he’ll like what he finds at the end of it. But by then, of course, it will be too late.
This whole nonsensical and very dangerous campaign theme of Hillary’s – that the Russians are behind the alleged hacking of the DNC and Podesta, and that therefore Trump is their conscious agent – is based on the scientific equivalent of vaporware. The reality is that no one knows a) How WikiLeaks obtained the documents it is publishing and b) How they were procured in the first place. That’s because, in spite of the “scientific” pretensions of the cyber-warfare industry, there is no way for anyone to know for sure if it was hackers (as opposed to insiders) or, if it was hackers, who they are – not unless the perpetrators come out and admit it, or unless they are caught in the act by someone looking over their shoulder.
“A populace deprived of the ability to separate lies from truth, is no longer capable of sustaining a free society.”
Journalist Chris Hedges
As the ruling elite pushes its rigged election, forcibly cramming crime boss Hillary down our gullets against the people’s choice or will, so goes suppression of information rapidly shutting off the truth spigot, leaving Americans high and dry, starved of honesty by their oligarchic owned and controlled crime cabal government. Signs that the globalists are panicking are visible every day as they aggressively provoke World War III timed with the collapse of their morally and financially bankrupted global economy. And with two-thirds of Americans living from paycheck to paycheck, the future does not look bright.
The latest over-the-top signs reflecting the globalists’ aggressive desperation are the UK’s RT bank closing its account and cutting off Julian Assange’s internet access in London. It’s bad enough that the WikiLeaks founder has effectively been imprisoned for over four years trapped in the Ecuadorian Embassy, but now he’s apparently been cut off from internet contact with the outside world and media in Ecuador is swimming with the sharks eagerly urging reconsideration of his asylum status.
These two significant and most definitely intertwined events coming hours apart out of London are just the beginning of the elite’s major assault on free speech and freedom of the press, in effect putting a final cap on the truth ever leaking out to a truth-starved world. The globalists’ fixation on absolute power and control is currently manifesting as deep state’s invasive silencing of any and all voices of truth and dissidence, starting with these two biggies. Completely cutting off the world’s free access to accurate information from legitimate sources still authentically reporting world news events and developments past and present is the rulers’ highest priority right now on the eve of the election. And with both WikiLeaks and RT in their crosshairs, the elite has fired its first major shot across the bow. All totalitarian regimes suppress dissent and truth becomes their biggest enemy.
The timing of the Julian disconnect right after WikiLeaks’ release of Hillary’s homage to Goldman Sachs three speeches (each earning her on average a cool $200,000 a shot) is more than coincidental. In response to the falling oil prices and mounting debt, in 2014 Ecuador agreed to transfer more than half its gold reserves, over 14.5 tons of gold, for three years to none other than Goldman Sachs. So through US Empire arm twisting by way of either Wall Street or the Pentagon or both, the ruling elite saw to it that Empire successfully pressured the Ecuadorian government to suspend Assange’s access to the internet. As a whoring oligarch puppet, Hillary grew filthier and richer selling off America to highest bidders both foreign and domestic, furthering the interests of the corporate elite that own and control the international crime cabal shamefully pretending to still be the US government. Meanwhile, the West’s demonization of the actual good guys who’ve most exposed the demonic evil being committed by the ruling elite’s US Empire – Assad and Putin – are the world’s best and really only true crime fighters against global terrorism. Likewise, Julian Assange has been on the US hit list for all his noble efforts also exposing the cabal’s evildoing.
Ecuador’s excuse for selling out Assange at Empire’s behest came in a released statement:
WikiLeaks published a wealth of documents impacting on the US election campaign. The government of Ecuador respects the principle of non-intervention in the internal affairs of other states and does not interfere in external electoral processes.
So no doubt knuckling under to hardball Empire threats, the Quito government decided to cut off Julian’s connectivity with the outside world just when WikiLeaks was moving into home stretch releasing the most damaging evidence against criminal gangster Hillary. Sadly, Ecuador’s President Correa lacks the balls of a Hugo Chavez or Philippine’s President Rodrigo Duterte to tell the US on no uncertain terms to “go to hell” when we most need that kind of courage to democratically stand up for the people’s right to know rather than cowardly kowtow to imperialistic master’s belligerence. By the way, Duterte just officially announced his “separation” from the US while visiting China, the nation he’s now aligning with.
Before respecting Correa’s rationale of “upholding his principle” of non-interference in other nations’ internal affairs, lest we remind him of how the US crime cabal led by Secretary of State Clinton herself brutally toppled another democratically elected Latin American leader Honduran President Manuel Zelaya in 2009. So Correa’s hypocritical stance feebly taking some moral high ground quickly caves in under his feet when the cold hard reality of the bigger picture is taken into account. Might makes right arrogance and American exceptionalism has US Empire constantly interfering in the internal affairs of other nations with complete impunity for well over a century, be they elections, coups or assassinations in dozens of smaller nations. We’re left only to guess what threats were delivered to Correa that coerced him to bow down to the world’s biggest bullying murderer. Days after Assange’s connection went dead, his outfit is still dumping more damning emails from Hillary’s campaign manager John Podesta. So I expect that even without its leader at the helm, the WikiLeaks contingency plan still possesses the means to be able to press forward with the grand finale exposing the evil Clinton-Bush-Obama crime syndicate in the final weeks running up to the November 8th election.
At the exact same time, Julian’s internet connection’s been unplugged, the UK bank that services the Kremlin’s state-owned television news network RT has abruptly closed its account. Though the UK government was quick to respond claiming it had nothing to do with the decision, despite its recent order to RAF pilots in Syria to begin shooting down Russian planes killing their pilots, the British government insists that the National Westminster Bank acted alone. A-huh, just like when Ecuador decided to disconnect Julian it was acting alone. It’s so obvious what the elite is pulling here, for its cabal servants to pretend otherwise is an insult to anyone’s intelligence with half a brain function. As of last weekend without consultation, prior notice or any explanation, RT’s been handed official notice that its account has retroactively been closed by a majority-owned British government bank.
Margarita Simonyan, RT’s editor-in-chief, delivered the news via her Twitter:
They closed our accounts in Britain. All of them. ‘Decision not to be discussed’. Long live freedom of speech!
Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov stated the obvious:
It’s as clear as day that this decision was not made by the bank. And not any other bank – banks don’t make such decisions on their own. I believe an old saying is appropriate here: don’t treat others the way you don’t wish to be treated yourself.
The United States and its Western vassals in Europe are upset because so many of their own citizens are tuning in daily to watch the Russian news network RT that draws the largest worldwide viewing audience of 70 million per week and over half that per day. The bottom line is people are recognizing that CNN and NBC along with the New York Times and Washington Post are merely serving as Washington’s lapdog propaganda department. So as a result, people are turning to RT believing that they are receiving far more accurate and objective coverage of daily world news events. On YouTube the most watched news channel isn’t the big networks, it’s The Young Turks. Alex Jones daily broadcasts best the commercial news networks these days. Even elitists like Hillary admits “we are losing the information war.” The more the establishment media attempts to ridicule and denigrate these alternative outlets (similar to what’s being done to Trump), the more popular they become for exposing the truth about US Empire crimes against humanity. This fact is really scaring the global rulers and hence they’ve become ruthlessly desperate to destroy freedom of the press particularly against the internet.
The ruling elite realizes a growing segment of the global population is onto their psychopathic endgame of theft debt enslavement, filthy debauchery, irreparable corruption, bloody global genocide and skyrocketing tyranny fast leading us towards one world government. Afraid that the masses are awakening worldwide due to such important information disseminators as WikiLeaks, RT, and the internet media exposing the elite’s widespread criminal activities, we’re now reaching critical mass and have the evil ones on the run. Terrified that we’re mobilizing against them on a massive worldwide grassroots scale, the handful of psychopathic sickos who for centuries have owned and controlled the world are in a state of sheer panic and desperation. Among the most demonic is former President George H.W. Bush who once said to a journalist asking him what would happen if US citizens knew of his prime role in Iran-Contra scandal and his other nefarious crimes:
If the American people ever find out what we have done, they would chase us down the street and lynch us.
Well by George, that time has come. The George Soroses of the liver crowd and their political cronies all need to be rounded up and tried as treasonous war criminals. After all, the current Bush-Obama-Clinton agenda is set to ignite World War III as their house of cards economy crumbles and burns, thus enabling the elite to nip the coming revolt in the bud, prior to an informed, pissed off citizenry coalescing into a formidable unified front. Hence, along with global war amidst a severe depression, removing free access to the World Wide Web has also become their top priority just in time for the election.
After the George Soros-connected, electronic voting machines already stole the nomination from Sanders, in 16 critical states they’re set to ensure that Hillary cheats again to win next month. But if enough of us learn and know the truth, an educated, empowered global masses challenging and opposing deep state authority worldwide is the globalists’ worst nightmare. Between stealing another rigged election while forcing a global war against Russia just as the dominoes begin falling to break their central banking system (vis-à-vis Deutsche Bank), amidst all these disasters, foremost is their information war to control our minds. As author Charles Hughes-Smith writes, “The ruling elite has lost the consent of the governed.” They know they cannot pull off their catastrophic perfect storm without controlling our minds.
Since 9/11 America has degenerated from a beacon of light and freedom (albeit up until less than a century ago only for a privileged majority of white males) to today’s malevolent darkness of globalized servitude and the earth’s mass murdering sacrificial lamb. But only a few decades ago the US was world renowned as a long-reigning supreme bastion of top quality higher education. Now our college grads possess the academic skills of high school students in the rest of the industrial world. Besides the drastic IQ drop, the dumbed down the United States has severely regressed from the days when academic freedom on college campuses was a cherished tradition above all else, when freedom rang out in passionate protest against the evils of war, spawning the peace movement during the Vietnam War (despite police just weeks apart in 1970 murdering students at both Kent State and Jackson State Universities as the ultimate totalitarian crime of gross First Amendment censorship violation and democide murder).
Today censorship takes the rigidly tyrannical form of militant PC fanaticism that’s gripping university life as yet another shameful disgrace of our lost First Amendment rights. Behind the façade of Political Correctness, America’s thought control police are insidiously working overtime. And they are no more out of control than on college campuses where outspoken professors with integrity are being one by one muzzled or fired should they not comply with Gestapo PC law that’s usurped our Constitution as our nation’s once rule of law. Excellent scholars and educators in good standing are being lost and destroyed in a witch hunt that would make Joe McCarthy proud. Educators across America and Canada are currently being targeted and victimized, suspended or terminated from their lifelong teaching positions at a number of universities where PC extremism rules the day. Some have been targeted for speaking out about rape, others for their political views.
Three such higher profile cases are James Tracy fired from Florida Atlantic University, Joy Karega from Ohio’s Oberlin College and Tony Hall from the Canada’s University of Lethbridge. Each has been punished not for anything even remotely related to job performance but strictly for exercising their right to free speech. Being terminated for speaking against lies and injustices perpetrated by two of the world’s most corrupt and evil regimes – Washington and Tel Aviv – is a shameful violation of not just our First Amendment but academic freedom as well. Among the foremost tenets of higher learning espoused on every college campus and mission statement is the notion that the university is supposed to represent a safe harbinger of free thought and free speech, unrestricted, honest inquiry and active pursuit of truth, ethics and high moral principle. But like virtually every institution in America, the pristine, sacrosanct image and lofty words on paper belie the much darker, sinister reality of bottom line institutionalized hypocrisy in practice.
For his scholarly accounts exposing the US government’s rampant anomalies and lies using false flags to promote mass paranoia and an unconstitutional gun control agenda as demonstrated by multiple, so-called mass shootings and terrorist attacks at such places as Sandy Hook, the Boston Marathon bombing, Charleston and San Bernardino, James Tracy was systematically harassed, unjustly and unjustly fired eventually for the lame excuse for failing to fill out paperwork, deprived him of his academic career as an outstanding media professor at FAU. As a prolific writer-activist, James Tracy also provides an excellent website called memoryholeblog.com that’s a treasure trove of incisive real news articles reflecting the world as it really is as opposed to the typical MSM bullshit propaganda. His “controversial” high profile was too much for university administration that succumbed to outside pressures directed by an exposed Sandy Hook crisis actor and the long arm of the shadowy, vindictive government. Earlier this year he filed a lawsuit for wrongful termination in efforts to get his job back.
Joy Karega and Tony Hall are the latest victims of this PC madness gone awry. Increasingly in America Political Correctness prohibits honest dialogue from being spoken on most any topic, for fear of having some “victim” somewhere on this planet’s feelings hurt and offended. It’s simply the deceptive pretext for shutting down our First Amendment rights. Joy accurately criticized Israel for its major role in the inside 9/11 job. She also placed on Facebook her contention that ISIS is a creation by the CIA and Mossad, which happened to also be true. She implicated Israel in the Charlie Hebdo false flag and the fact that the staged shootings resulted right after France recognized the Palestinian State and moved to lift sanctions against Russia. All the high profile terrorist attacks are state sponsored, complete with intelligence agency handlers most often the CIA and Mossad. The Rothschild fortune has owned and controlled central banks as well as governments for centuries. Recall the infamous quote by the godfather of Europe’s family banking cartel near the close of the 18th century, Mayer Amschel Rothschild, “Give me control of a nation’s money and I care not who makes the laws.” So Joy nailed that one too. Karega posted her largely true beliefs on her personal Facebook and Twitter accounts, thus exercising her right to free speech and never shared her views in the classroom. Even if her position toward Israel wasn’t accurate, she has the right to express herself. Yet she was immediately labeled a raving anti-Semitic and the Oberlin Board of Trustees pressured the college president to cut her loose. Ultimately she was suspended.
Tony Hall came to her defense also pointing out the hypocrisies of defending the Jewish State’s brutal oppression and war crimes. After teaching more than a quarter century at his university, Tony Hall was framed by an internet shill who posted a “Kill all Jews” graphic on the professor’s Facebook page that was then seized upon by the Jewish lobbyist group B’nai Brith with charges of anti-Semitism. The Lethbridge president knuckled under to outside PC pressure and suspended him without pay. Joy and Tony have both been rightfully critical of Israel for its atrocious human rights record of inhumane and aggressive policies toward Palestinians as well as clandestine Mossad operations around the world with the CIA as on the ground architects and handlers of state-sponsored global terrorism.
It’s now reached the Orwellian point of no return, where if you dare speak out against Israel, it automatically invites the branding charge of anti-Semitism. For bravely telling the truth against a nation’s genocidal policies that are only rewarded by an imperialistic US Empire with the biggest military aid package in US history announced last month – $38 billion over the next decade – that’ll be used to kill even more innocent Palestinians, these good intelligent gifted people’s careers for speaking the truth are being ruined as free speech is rapidly being trampled upon and silenced in North America. It’s an obscene abomination and grossest miscarriage of justice of the worst order. But then when the world’s most oppressive killing machine is willing to do the war crime bidding fighting Israel’s wars against scapegoated Muslims in the Middle East, North Africa and beyond because dual citizenship Zionists entrenched in Washington are clearly loyal to Israel and treasonously bringing down America, what else can we expect? We need to remove the scourge of AIPAC- and Netanyahu-loving traitors from our midst once and for all.
New World Order totalitarianism is outlawing free speech, freedom of the press and free internet all in one. Fools still paying attention to mainstream media propaganda is a 21st-century disappearing act. According to an April 2016 study from the Media Insight Project, a partnership of The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research and the American Press Institute, only 6% of Americans actually are confident in their trust of mainstream media these days, which is about the same trust level as US Congress. A mid-September Gallup poll found less than a third of Americans have even a fair amount or more of trust toward media, an all-time low since Gallup began tracking this trust issue in 1972. Interestingly, Gallup speculates that the way the fawning press this election year is so blatantly pro-Hillary and biased against Trump has drastically turned off many Americans from believing mainstream media has any credibility.
Clearly, the elite is growing increasingly agitated when so many of us neither trust our government leaders nor the 6 oligarchs owned, Hillary-backing mega media corporations 24/7 pumping out propaganda lies and disinformation masquerading as news. Nowadays nearly two out of three Americans are relying on information outflow coming from internet news sources and social media sites as an important or primary method for news and information. And for that reason alone, today it’s being targeted for censorship like never before. If the globalists have their way, legit alternative news on the internet will be shut down shortly. The Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement undermines internet freedom.
While RT and WikiLeaks are just the first high profile victims in this stepped up war on the free press, on October 1st Obama quietly handed over the web’s domain name system to the United Nations International Telecommunications Union (ITU) led by the People’s Republic of China, a nation notorious for heavily censoring the web limiting its citizens to only what the Communist Party deems acceptable. This latest Obama move is but one more backdoor method leading to centralized UN censorship control over the internet.
Moreover, it’s become common knowledge that the internet has been invaded and saturated with tax funded paid government trolls to act as propagandists for the oppressive establishment. Their purpose is to confuse, misinform and manipulate and control public opinion, ultimately promoting conformity and obedience to deep state authority.
Thus, it was also no accident that the presidential destroyer of our nation and internet freedom Barack Obama gave a speech at an innovation conference in Pittsburgh last week reverberated that same theme of reigning in far stricter control over the internet:
We are going to have to rebuild within this wild-wild-west-of-information flow some sort of curating function that people agree to.
This is his doublespeak encoded language for really saying “get ready for full time censorship on the internet so Big Brother can preapprove and spoon feed everything you have access to, all for your own good of course.” Like his war criminal predecessor, he argued his concerns “against conspiracy theorists” and manmade global warming skeptics, despite the global warming hoax that it is. A Pew Research poll showed that two years ago only 40% of Americans believe that global warming is actually manmade. Yet Obama’s former regulatory czar Cass Sunstein is even calling for a government ban on conspiracy theorizing. CNN’s Chris Cuomo just tried to convince viewers that it’s illegal to even look at the WikiLeaks emails. We already know how Google, Facebook, and Twitter are now brown shirt whores working for the current Clinton cabal.
You can see where all this is headed, the government will continue making more extreme draconian laws calling for our arrest as enemies of the state if we dare utter an inconvenient truth about anything deep state prohibits us from believing or talking about. The feds are out to control our minds, our very thoughts, our perceptions, beliefs and our every behavior along with all access to information and knowledge so that we have no more capacity for individual critical thinking or freedom of choice. The elite’s agenda wants us to simply be dumbed down, unthinking, “do-as-you’re-told” robots. And through decades of social engineering as well as the poisoning of our environment (i.e. fluoride, toxins in food, Monsanto and geoengineering-saturated soil, air, and water), sadly too many of us are already there. Take away our last opportunity for information and truth and eventually, all of us will turn into zombies.
If we choose to oppose their oppressive totalitarian NWO agenda, those social programming camps that Hillary referred to for grownups already have a built-in tribunal and mortuary sections equipped to assassinate those of us who cannot be reprogrammed at the closest FEMA prison camp nearest you. There exists a 2009 Department of Defense FM 3-39.40 manual that details the full layout and function of these concentration camps waiting to be filled once the SHTF. And based on today’s dizzying events, it’s about to all break loose. Ultimately those humans left alive when all is said and done will be the dumbed down, lobotomized version of 21st-century human robots who along with their mechanized nonhuman counterparts will be slaves subserviently servicing the master class of psychopaths still left in charge.
All you have to do nowadays to learn the actual truth is take whatever Obama, Hillary and their minions say, and already knowing it’s all lies based on their irrefutable track records, you simply reverse whatever they say the opposite, and just like that, you will then know the truth. Case in point, our shit-for-brains Manchurian president said:
There has to be, I think, some sort of way in which we can sort through information that passes some basic truthiness tests and those that we have to discard because they just don’t have any basis in anything that’s actually happening in the world.
So what if Obama’s version of “the truth” consists only of lies? He condescendingly believes we are incapable of discerning the truth for ourselves, so his Orwellian trained government will benevolently do that job for us. In that same sermon on the propaganda mount, Obama repeated the boldface lie that what he’s calling for is not censorship. See what I mean, just reverse what he says and you’ve automatically arrived at the truth. Know for sure that what Big Brother “discards” will be the truth that you are prohibited from knowing and believing, leaving for your daily consumption just more of the same old, same old mind control mush read word-for-word from bimbos’ idiot cards on every channel at the same time… a real live version of “Ground Hog Day” played out the rest of our pathetically enslaved lives.
It all comes down to a mad race against time. The global rulers are frantic to not just retain but fully tighten their already powerful grip of control over the masses. The race that we citizens of the world are up against is not only trying to stay alive in the face of so much death and destruction the elite’s hurling at us but also to become empowered to play a major role in restructuring the reset button on a new system emerging from the ashes of the old, one that this time will be truly resource-based, equitable, fair-minded and etched in enduring principles of peace, cooperation, justice, compassion, and honesty… that is if the homicidal maniacs don’t do us in first. The prospect of nuclear annihilation is dangerously close, more real than ever before in our human history. Their tyrannical actions now being perpetrated on us means that we have limited time to counter their transgressions by open revolt. Just as our Founding Fathers were forced to fight for their freedom against their over-controlling oppressors, at this time and place in history, so must we citizens of the world fight for ours.
Perhaps the leading argument for democracy is that it substitutes “ballots for bullets”: that it replaces the inconvenient and disruptive processes of violent change by peaceful changes expressing the majority will. Some democrats have defined democracy as majority rule, while others have placed on this rule the limitation that minorities must themselves be left free to try to become a majority. But, whichever the definition, the peaceful change argument is the dominant one. (The other major argument for democracy is that the decisions of the majority are always, or almost always, morally right, but support for this article of faith has dwindled in recent years.)
Yet though pervasive, the peaceful change argument has been simply accepted with little or no analysis. In particular, no one has investigated the problem: is the existing form of democracy really compatible with this argument, and what specific form of government does the argument entail? Instead, it has been simply assumed that any type of democracy automatically receives its credentials from the peaceful change doctrine.
But let us investigate the doctrine a little further. What it really holds is that, in the long run, majority opinion rules under any form of government, and that therefore it is better to let it rule peacefully, as in a democracy, rather than force the majority to take to the streets periodically in a violent coup or revolution. Ballots then substitute for bullets in a very precise way: for democratic election yields that very result which would have been attained if the majority had had to test its strength against the minority in violent combat.
Here, then, we have a criterion for democracy imposed by the peaceful change argument: that the result be the same as would have ensued from a test of combat. It is important to realize that this criterion is rigorously implied by the argument, and that, if we accept the argument, and we also find that a certain form of democracy leads systematically to results which are very wide of this “bullet-substitute” mark, then we must either reject that form of democracy or give up the argument.
How, then, does American democracy, or the democracy of any other state, fare when we test it against our criterion? Perhaps the most fundamental democratic form (violated only in the small number of traditional university plural votes in England) is that each man has one vote. Even though the practicalities of electoral allocation often weight the votes of rural or other areas, the democratic ideal is universally considered to be one vote per man, and this is generally pretty well approached in practice. But, if we try to justify this arrangement by the peaceful change argument, we run up against fundamental difficulties.
In the first place, physical power is manifestly not equally distributed. In a test of combat, women, old people, and the sick would do very badly. On the peaceful change argument, therefore, there is no justification whatever for giving these physically feeble groups the vote. And not only would they have to be barred from voting, but so also would we have to bar 4-F’s [ineligible for the draft because of medical problems] and all citizens who could not pass a test for physical combat fitness. On the other hand, there should obviously be no literacy test, since literacy has no relation to a man’s combat potential. In addition to barring all those not fit for combat from voting, we would clearly have to give plural votes to all who have been militarily trained (such as soldiers and policemen), for it is obvious that a group of highly-trained fighters could easily defeat a far more numerous group of amateurs, even if equally robust.
In addition to ignoring the inequalities of physical power and combat fitness, there is another way in which existing democracies fail to live up to the logical requirements of the peaceful change thesis. This failure stems from another basic inequality: inequality of interest or intensity belief. Thus, 60% of the population may oppose a certain policy, or political party, while only 40% favor it. In a democracy, this policy or party will be defeated. But the bulk of the 40% may favor the measure, or candidate, passionately and enthusiastically, and therefore would be most willing, in the absence of democracy, to engage in a combat test. But the 60% majority may have only very slight interest in the issue. In a democratic election, one vote by an apathetic only faintly interested person is allowed to offset the vote of a passionate partisan.
Yet because of their lack of interest, perhaps none of the majority would have been willing to enter into combat. Hence, if we accept the peaceful change thesis of democracy as a substitute for bullets, we must agree that a democratic process that gives an apathetic man the same weight as an enthusiast cannot meet our own criterion. The apathetic would never enter a test of combat, and therefore existing democracies systematically distort electoral results in relation to the hypothetical results of combat.
It is probable that no procedure of democratic voting could be satisfactory in meeting this problem. But certainly much could be done to alter present forms to bring them closer to our test. The whole trend of current democracies has been to make voting easier for the people; but this violates the test directly, because this means that it has been made ever easier for the apathetic to register their votes. But the more weight we give to the votes of the apathetic, the farther away is democracy from satisfying its own criterion. Clearly, what is needed is to make voting far more difficult, to insure that only the more intensely interested people will vote. A moderate poll tax, not large enough to keep out a mass of enthusiasts who could not afford to pay, large enough to discourage the indifferent, would be very helpful.
Perhaps another useful step would be to remove all names from the ballot, thereby requiring all voters to write in their favorite candidates themselves. Not only would this eliminate the decidedly undemocratic special privilege that the State gives to those whose names it prints on the ballot, but it would also bring us closer to our criterion, for a voter who doesn’t know the name of his favorite candidate would hardly have fought in the streets on his behalf.
Thus, we see that the peaceful change argument, far from endorsing all existing democracies, requires vital and radical changes in existing democratic structures. To account for differences in strength, all those citizens not for combat would have to be deprived of the vote, and plural votes would be indicated for soldiers and policemen. To account for differences in interest and enthusiasm, voting would have to be made difficult rather than easy, including the imposition of a universal poll tax. And even then, it is probably that serious distortions would remain, for no mere adjustments in voting rules could match the interest required to induce the citizen to fight in the streets for his program or party. It is possible, then, that the peaceful change argument is self-contradictory, and the criterion can never be fulfilled. But even if we disregard this inherent distortion the existing democracies could certainly never be justified by the argument and radical changes such as we have outlined would be required.
We have seen that democracy such as the world has known it, marked especially by free (non-priced) voting, and one vote for every person, cannot be supported and is indeed negated by, the dominant, peaceful change argument for democracy. One or the other, the argument or the system, must be abandoned.
Murray N. Rothbard wrote this piece in 1959.
Note: The views expressed on Mises.org are not necessarily those of the Mises Institute.
Pressed by moderator Chris Wallace as to whether he would accept defeat should Hillary Clinton win the election, Donald Trump replied, “I will tell you at the time. I’ll keep you in suspense.” “That’s horrifying,” said Clinton, setting off a chain reaction on the post-debate panels with talking heads falling all over one another in purple-faced anger, outrage, and disbelief.
“Disqualifying!” was the cry on Clinton cable.
“Trump Won’t Say If He Will Accept Election Results,” wailed the New York Times. “Trump Won’t Vow to Honor Results,” ran the banner in the Washington Post.
But what do these chattering classes and establishment bulletin boards think the Donald is going to do if he falls short of 270 electoral votes?
Lead a Coxey’s Army on Washington and burn it down as British Gen. Robert Ross did in August 1814, while “Little Jemmy” Madison fled on horseback out the Brookeville Road?
What explains the hysteria of the establishment?
And if felons decide the electoral votes of Virginia, and Virginia decides who is our next U.S. president, are we obligated to honor that election?
In 1824, Gen. Andrew Jackson ran first in popular and electoral votes. But, short of a majority, the matter went to the House.
There, Speaker Henry Clay and John Quincy Adams delivered the presidency to Adams—and Adams made Clay secretary of state, putting him on the path to the presidency that had been taken by Jefferson, Madison, Monroe, and Adams himself.
Were Jackson’s people wrong to regard as a “corrupt bargain” the deal that robbed the general of the presidency?
The establishment also recoiled in horror from Milwaukee Sheriff Dave Clarke’s declaration that it is now “torches and pitchforks time.”
Yet, some of us recall another time, when Supreme Court Justice William O. Douglas wrote in “Points of Rebellion”: “We must realize that today’s Establishment is the new George III. Whether it will continue to adhere to his tactics, we do not know. If it does, the redress, honored in tradition, is also revolution.”
Baby-boomer radicals loved it, raising their fists in defiance of Richard Nixon and Spiro Agnew.
But now that it is the populist-nationalist right that is moving beyond the niceties of liberal democracy to save the America that they love, elitist enthusiasm for “revolution” seems more constrained.
What goes around comes around.
There are less than three weeks left before Election Day and if the next two are anything like this one, we’re going to have a heart attack. On Monday, James O’Keefe
On Monday, James O’Keefe announced he was going to release a damning piece of evidence every day running up to Nov. 8. At noon, he dropped the first bomb and showed the world that the DNC has been inciting violence at Trump rallies to make Republicans look bad. “If you are there and you’re protesting,” said one Dem operative caught on tape, “you will be attacked…. That’s what we want.” This is just one damning quote in a mountain of brutal conversations where DNC operatives use any means necessary to cheat a win. They’re not simply encouraging people to vote for Hillary. They are illegally manipulating evidence against Trump so he loses. The RNC doesn’t have to stoop to these levels because Hillary’s record speaks for itself. Project Veritas is often ignored when major scoops happen. They claim James takes things out of context (he makes full versions of tapes available) or he was jailed for fraud (it was invasion of privacy). This time, however, they couldn’t ignore him. His Twitter feed links to Newt Gingrich, Rush Limbaugh, Bill O’Reilly, Sean Hannity, as well as Anderson Cooper, Jake Tapper, and Van Jones, feverishly reporting on the tapes. Hillary’s people started firing operatives to put out the fire, but a second blaze broke out that had nothing to do with Project Veritas. On Monday, we discovered Hillary’s people were offering “quid pro quo” to the FBI in exchange for pretending some emails were not classified. Hillary continued to throw even more people under the bus in a bid to save herself and the FBI has denied any involvement. She can fire her entire staff if she wants to. The lies are still there. I don’t know what Garfield is talking about. Mondays rock.
Tuesday was even better. Before dawn, a statue of Hillary naked appeared in Lower Manhattan’s Bowling Green. It’s considered pithy to do that to Trump here in New York, but to do it to Hillary is sexist and shames women’s bodies or something. Within minutes, two fat women tore the statue to the ground while kicking it and screaming, “Leave it alone.” The statue was whisked away by 7:30 a.m. and the Gothamist’s take was “Trump’s a miserable, thin-skinned, groping, violence-inciting piece of shit and most of his fans are just as bad” (their Trump statue coverage ended with “New York is the best city on earth, and don’t you forget it”). We barely had enough time to grab some popcorn and get to our seats before O’Keefe dropped his second bomb of the week: voter fraud. Turns out the DNC has gone from busing in illegal voters to getting them to drive themselves in so nobody gets caught. Various shell companies separate the funding for this fraud from the DNC. The press continued yesterday’s momentum and on Hannity we heard Trump’s campaign manager Kellyanne Conway say O’Keefe’s videos are the strongest evidence of election rigging to date. This is while USA Today tells us Trump’s accusations of rigging the election are “a chorus of complaint” while CNN insists they’re “dangerous” and “outlandish.”
As someone involved in politics for more than 40 years, I can attest to the fact that you ruffle some feathers and, dare I say, make some enemies along the way. So what? If the bed-wetters and pearl-clutchers aren’t upset with you, you aren’t making a difference.
Politics ain’t beanbag, as the saying goes, and I’m no stranger to controversy or a fight. I’ve been called just about every name in the book, and new books could be written using just the words that have been created to attack me.
But there is one word that no one has ever attempted to attach to me before this week: traitor.
Think of me what you will, I love my country. I’ve spent my life defending it from those who seek to harm it, both foreign and domestic. So imagine my surprise when a third-rate bureaucrat cum fourth-rate partisan former CIA Deputy CIA Director Mike Morell accused me of “actually working on behalf of the Russians.”
Congressman Jerry Nadler started this witch hunt when he called on FBI Director Comey (director of the Sandy Berger, Mark Rich, and Hillary e-mail cover-ups) to investigate me for my non-existent ties to Russia. I am accused of treason. That’s what Nadler, CIA hack Michael Morell, and the Clinton thugs have accused me of. It is, to put it mildly, bullshit. And they know it.
But Morell, now a flying monkey in Hillary Clinton’s thug army, is happily spreading the lie that I knew in advance that Wikileaks would hack the very revealing e-mail of Hillary campaign chief John Podesta. This because of a tweet I posted in August at the time my boyhood friend and colleague Paul Manafort was under attack for his perfectly legal work in Ukraine for a democratic political party. I predicted that Podesta’s business dealings would be exposed. I didn’t hear it from Wikileaks, although Julian Assange and I share a common friend. I reported the story on my website.
So let’s be clear. I had no advance notice of Wikileaks’ hacking of Podesta’s e-mails. I didn’t need it to know what Podesta has been up to. I do not work for any Russian interest. I have no Russian clients. I have never received a penny from any public or private entity or individual and that includes Russian intelligence. None. Nada. Zilch.
This is the new McCarthyism. I don’t favor war with Russia, a war this administration seems to be hurtling towards as we speak. Like Trump, I favor a period of Nixon-like détente and hard-headed negotiations with the Russians that would allow us to work together to crush ISIS. This does not mean I am pro-Putin or approve of Russian totalitarianism.
Being in politics a while, I do understand deflection. The Clintonistas hope they can distract public attention away from the stunning criminal activities exposed in the Wikileaks by attacking those who they say leaked them. In this case, that is not me.
Proponents of the alkaline diet claim that eating certain foods influences the body’s acid-base homeostasis, or pH levels. It’s believed that encouraging a healthy, pH balanced environment within the body can produce favorable effects on one’s health. It sounds like a good idea, and it is true that tissues and fluids must maintain a certain pH level to function properly. However, your body has mechanisms to keep pH levels in check — regardless of what you eat. Let’s take a closer look at the alkaline diet and break it down.
Much of the discussion surrounding the alkaline diet focuses on the significant changes in the human diet over the last 10,000 years. Until a recent point on our evolutionary timeline, humans mostly consumed fruit, vegetables, and small amounts of lean protein. Once the food industry came into existence, we began eating more refined grains, fattier sources of meat, and processed foods that are high in sodium, saturated fat, and refined sugars — all of which cause inflammation and contribute to serious, chronic diseases.The alkaline diet discourages such foods.
If you’re researching the alkaline diet, you may have noticed some sources describe it using lofty words like “miraculous.” In reality, there are many variables, diet-related and otherwise, that affect your health. In many ways, theresistance, and kidney stones. It causes kidney damage, which contributes to metabolic acidosis.
How Your Body Compensates for Unbalanced pH Levels
The kidneys are one of the body’s primary defenses against acidosis. They accomplish this by sending excess metabolically-produced acids to your bladder to be eliminated via urine. They also maintain tight control over bicarbonate, which can act as either a base or an acid depending on what it reacts with. When kidney function is compromised the body is less equipped to control its acid load, which leads to an even higher acid load. This condition may worsen with age if kidney function continually decreases.
The ability of the kidneys to filter acid is not the body’s only mechanism to control its acid load; the lungs assist as well. Carbon dioxide is a product of cellular metabolism and it becomes acidic in the blood. The lungs are able to increase or reduce respiratory function to maintain acid-base homeostasis.
After months of exposing damaging internal information from both the Democratic National Committee and the Hillary Clinton campaign, much of which actually points to criminal behavior but seemingly has no impact on the polls, Julian Assange has concluded that “There is no US election. There is power consolidation. Rigged primary,rigged media and rigged ‘pied piper’ candidate drive consolidation.”
There is no US election. There is power consolidation. Rigged primary, rigged media and rigged ‘pied piper’ candidate drive consolidation.
— WikiLeaks (@wikileaks) October 21, 2016
Sadly, it is difficult to disagree with the assessment. That an establishment democratic candidate could endure an extended FBI investigation, in which multiple federal laws were clearly and intentionally broken, and clear evidence of corruption and collusion between the FBI and State Department is mind boggling. Throw in evidence from WikiLeaks clearly linking the DNC to criminal efforts to incite violence at rallies, numerous examples of pay-to-play activities at the Clinton Foundation, blatant media collusion, etc, etc, and it actually becomes quite frightening.
And, while no amount of corruption or scandal seems to sway an American electorate that is intent upon driving the bus off the cliff, Assange has promised a “surprise” for Tim Kaine and the “persecuted Christian woman”, Donna Brazile.
— WikiLeaks (@wikileaks) October 20, 2016
And while we certainly look forward to one more “October Surprise,” we’re sure it’s just one more damning piece of information that will be promptly ignored by the complicit “mainstream media”, which as Wikileaks itself exposed is nothing but a PR machine for the administration and an oblivious American electorate.
Reprinted with permission from Zero Hedge.
It’s precisely BECAUSE Donald Trump has been a bit impulsive, a bit demeaning, sometimes inaccurate, and an alleged misogynist, but has still managed to rattle the cage of those who buy favors from government and threatens the reign of what appears to be a criminal element that has taken over American government and surprisingly still has a fighting chance to become a populist President.
It isn’t Donald Trump that is being paid off by foreign sources to do their bidding. It is now revealed the former Secretary of State solicited a $12 million donation from a foreign government [New York Post Oct 21, 2016] while Donald Trump is pilloried for not donating enough money to charity. [News Examiner] One is a crime. The other is just being miserly.
Some (rigged) polls have shown Hillary is favored over Mr. Trump. Yet her trustworthiness is questioned by a majority of Americans. [RollCall.com]
Here is a woman who said she had to run from snipers in the Balkans and was “dead broke” upon leaving the White House. [YouTube.com] When her husband left office in 2001, she took home gifts (furniture, china, flatware) intended to furnish the White House and was forced to return some items and pay for others*. [Factcheck.org] And this is the woman whom Americans may now end up entrusting their future? There is a disconnect here.
Somehow Americans wonder if Donald Trump’s hair is real while we know that Hillary Clinton has an impersonator who has been standing in for her for some time now and was shown on the street in New York without a secret service detail. [YouTube; Mirror Sept 14, 2016] Which one is fake, Donald or Hillary? Another disconnect.
Donald Trump is taken to task for alleging, without substantiation, the upcoming election will be rigged. Yet didn’t the Democrat Party use its superdelegate system and collude with the news media to thwart the candidacy of Bernie Sanders? [Observer Oct 10, 2018; Breitbart.com Oct 16, 2016]
Women who vote against Mr. Trump are overlooking issues that matter, such as trade, taxes, employment, for issues that don’t really matter much – misogyny. Oh, I won’t excuse a Presidential candidate for pinching the rear end of attractive women, but that standard of conduct certainly hasn’t been held for Joe Biden the current vice President who in recent days has been shown in videotapes groping women in public. [The Political Insider]
Donald Trump garnered endorsements from just 4 major newspapers versus 84 for Hillary Clinton. [Wikipedia] The more the news media slanders Trump and the pollsters claim Mr. Trump is trailing a politician who is known to have accepted payoffs from foreign governments and covered up her crimes with the destruction of “personal” emails, the more the public now realizes the news media has been slanting elections for years.
The news media wants viewers and readers. It will do anything to drum up the political drama in this election and make it appear both candidates have a chance to win. Bottom line: the public is seeing through slanted polls and newspaper endorsements.
America doesn’t need a perfect President, it needs a President who will adhere to the Constitution, eliminate fraud and increase jobs and incomes of Americans. America needs a President who will stand up to a Congress that is a completely bought-and-paid-for branch of government. Is that man Donald Trump? It certainly isn’t his opponent.
Donald Trump is not accused of raping women as former President Bill Clinton was. And just why have all these groped women suddenly come out of the woodwork in the last weeks before the election when they had nothing to say before?
Do allegations that Trump fondled women erase all of the issues Donald Trump wants to address, such as unbridled immigration, exportation of jobs to Asia and fraud in American government? No! Stop complaining Mr. Trump isn’t dealing with issues. He is. The issues ARE being ignored by his opponent.
Do you really believe, just weeks before the U.S. election, American wages suddenly jumped 5.2%, the first increase in median household income since 2007? [US Census Bureau] Isn’t this just another government bureau creating favorable statistics just prior to an election?
The New York Times reports that alleged 5.2% increase in wages was still 1.6% lower than in 2007 and 2.4% lower than the peak reached in the 1990s (adjusted for inflation). [NY Times Sept 13, 2016] And the inflation rate (~1.5%) used to calculate these advances in wages is the target rate of inflation, not the real rate of inflation, which is close to 5%. [Shadowstats.com] Americans need to get a 5% annual pay raise just to keep up with inflation. Why isn’t the news media critical of the U.S. Census Bureau report?
And why is the U.S. preparing for war but to create an event that may distract from the upcoming election and could even be used to nullify the election? [Independent UK Oct 18, 2016] Recall that somehow when President Bill Clinton was deposed in the Monica Lewinsky fiasco, suddenly there were bombings in Iraq that evidence now shows were a planned distraction from the Lewinsky/Clinton impeachment vote. [Daily Mail UK] Will some planned distraction occur on Election Day? Will Americans fall for yet another ruse?
Yes, Donald Trump would make an imperfect President. He wouldn’t be the first.
Back in the 1980s, some conservatives began distinguishing between old-school, New Deal welfare statists like a Ted Kennedy, Hubert Humphrey or a Lyndon Johnson and the “Lunatic Left,” the hardcore Marxist Left that had emerged from the universities in the 1960s. The former group “only” wanted to tax and regulate capitalism; the latter group wanted to destroy it and replace it with as much totalitarian government control and domination that they could get away with in American society. They wanted the Sovietization of America, in other words. Indeed, many of them traveled to the Soviet Union, China, Cuba, and other socialist hellholes and returned to write books and articles about what a great utopia they had witnessed, as documented in the book Political Pilgrims by Paul Hollander. Unlike the old New Deal Cold Warriors, they were anything but anti-communist.
James Bennett and I wrote a 560-page book, published in 1985, entitled Destroying Democracy: How Government Funds Partisan Politics that discusses many of these characters, including one Robert Creamer, who has been all over the news recently for being videotaped bragging about how he orchestrates election fraud for the Democratic Party (See “Project Veritas”). The book was about the illegal use of tax dollars to subsidize mostly (but not exclusively) left-wing political pressure groups. The government gives them tax dollars under some noble-sounding guise like fighting poverty, helping the elderly, etc.; they use the tax dollars to lobby and agitate for bigger government, more regulation, and higher taxes instead; when they succeed the government then shares the loot with them and the cycle repeats itself. And it is all illegal.
In addition to all of this, Republican members of the U.S. Senate Labor and Human Resources committee found that millions of dollars were also diverted for left-wing political “training” and “legislative advocacy” during Hillary Clinton’s tenure as chairman of the board of the LSC. The LSC was funneling taxpayers’ funds to all the Alinsky-style political rabble-rousing groups. This occurred despite the fact that Congress had passed a law stipulating that no LSC funds may be used “to support or conduct training programs for the purpose of advocating particular public policies or encouraging political activities . . .” (Section 1007(b)(6) of the Legal Services Corporation Act of 1974 [42U.S.C. Section 2996f(a)(5). So we had a Yale Law School educated lawyer in charge of the government’s Legal Services Corporation blatantly and knowingly breaking the law.
Such behavior is a chief characteristic of all Lunatic Leftists: a sanctimonious belief that they are above the law; that they have a “right” to rule over all of our lives; and that their ends justify any means. It is this totalitarian mindset that distinguishes them from the old-guard Democratic Party of Hubert Humphrey, “Scoop” Jackson, and even Ted Kennedy (who was always primarily interested in boozing and womanizing anyway). Should Hillary Clinton be elected president, she can be expected to thumb her nose at anyone who criticizes her for employing dozens of Van Jones style “community organizers” in her administration as “czars” in charge of regulating and regimenting more and more of American society. The Lunatic Left will have assumed governmental powers that have accumulated over the past several hundred years.
di Francesco Simoncelli
Alla fine ci siamo arrivati. Inizia a sgretolarsi quel muro di certezze che granitico aveva sorretto le illusioni che i pianificatori monetari centrali avevano elargito alla massa. Eccoci, quindi, a discutere di come una banca potrebbe far cadere il domino di mattoncini che sin dal 2008 erano stati eretti attraverso le politiche monetarie straordinarie, strategia applaudita dalla maggior parte dei commentatori economici. Eppure eccoci qui, otto anni dopo, a parlare di come tutto questo caos economico sarebbe potuto essere evitato. Gli Austriaci avevano detto come e perché. Rivediamo tale come e perché sia stato lanciato come avvertimento e non come "cassandrata", soprattutto attraverso due esempi emblematici. Ovvero, i pazienti zero.
FRODE, FRODE OVUNQUE
Osservate queste due immagini.
La prima rappresenta l'interconnessione dell'attuale sistema bancario europeo. In altre parole, quell'immagine rappresenta i tasselli del domino. Per chi volesse approfondire ho avuto modo di parlare dei cosiddetti GSIB in questo articolo. La seconda immagine, invece, rappresenta il lending facility della BCE, ovvero, la "stanza" utilizzata dalla banca centrale europea per ottenere prestiti in brevissimo termine. È una misura cautelativa, la quale serve semplicemente a puntellare le riserve delle banche commerciali presso la stessa banca centrale. Nel caso di crisi si dimostra che esistono riserve solide da cui attingere, le quali vengono temporaneamente fatte uscire attraverso accordi di repurchase agreement. È quasi lo stesso modo usato dalla FED per mostrare ai mercati mondiali che sta tentando di sgonfiare il suo enorme bilancio da circa $4,500 miliardi; essa invece fa ricorso ai reverse repurchase agreement.
Inutile sottolineare come suddetta interconnessione rappresenti una bomba ad orologeria innescata di cui non si può vedere il timer. Qualsiasi istituto di credito, ormai, potrebbe rappresentare l'innesco della caduta del domino. Dal sistema bancario commerciale italiano, a Commerzbank, fino a Deutsche Bank. MPS è un caso emblematico, poiché se fosse fallita si sarebbe portata dietro tutti quegli istituti di credito di cui era debitrice. L'ultima cosa che vogliono al giorno d'oggi i pianificatori monetari centrali è l'azzeramento o addirittura la semplice riduzione degli attivi di una banca GSIB. Lo stesso discorso vale per assicurazioni, hedge fund, fondi pensione. Ma anche le cosiddette stime ufficiali danno per "eccessiva" l'attuale pseudo-ripresa. I pazzi monetari scatenati stanno pompando liquidità al ritmo di $200 miliardi al mese. E cosa hanno da mostrare come risultato? Redditività aziendale ai minimi, debito a rischio ai massimi, asset gonfiati artificialmente di prezzo. E c'è addirittura chi parla di "tapering". E no, il bilancio della FED non si sta riducendo perché sta vendendo asset alla vecchia maniera.
Le principali banche centrali del mondo sono all'angolo e non sapranno che pesci pigliare quando la prossima recessione spazzerà via l'illusione di stabilità finora spacciata attraverso la ZIRP, il presunto effetto ricchezza a cascata e l'obiettivo d'inflazione al 2%. Per non parlare delle mosse implementate dalla maggior parte delle banche centrali del mondo. Sono tutte impantanate con la ZIRP, di conseguenza quando arriverà la prossima recessione non potranno tagliare ulteriormente i tassi d'interesse senza scatenare una rivolta popolare. E non potranno aumentarli senza scatenare un caos a livello obbligazionario e azionario. Sono in trappola. Ma i fondamentali di mercato sono in continuo deterioramento, perché la politica monetaria allentata e il presunto effetto ricchezza a cascata delle banche centrali non hanno funzionato. Il canale della trasmissione monetaria a Main Street è rotto a causa del suo raggiungimento di una condizione di Picco del Debito, quindi ora esistono due economie parallele. Problema: i pianificatori monetari centrali pensano che resterà per sempre così, invece diventeranno perpendicolari scontrandosi.
Perché? Perché al giorno d'oggi s'è ripresentato di nuovo quello che per i keyensiani è un paradosso: stagflazione. I deficit continueranno ad erodere ricchezza reale, mentre il settore privato non sarà in grado di stare al passo con questo processo aumentando l'incidenza della legge dei rendimenti decrescenti. Questo significa che si arriverà ad un punto di rottura: inflazione di massa o depressione. Dipenderà da come si muoveranno le banche centrali e gli stati (io propendo per il primo esito). Infatti è proprio questo che c'è in cantiere, visto che l'intellighenzia è orientata verso la propaganda di uno stimolo fiscale. Ovvero, lo stato dovrebbe spendere di più, dovrebbe essere più invadente. Paul Krugman e Larry Summers l'hanno ripetuto fino alla nausea.
Questo è l'esito che attende tutte quelle nazioni che hanno gozzovigliato con la stampante monetaria pensando di poter seppellire sotto un cumulo di carta straccia problemi economici latenti. È proprio per questo motivo per cui una nuova crisi sta arrivando: gli errori economici eruttati prorompenti nel 2008 non sono stati corretti. Questo significa che quelle entità che sono state tenute artificialmente in vita attraverso interventi centrali, non hanno fatto altro che risucchiare risorse reali e sprecarle. È il caso infatti di tutte quelle grandi banche commerciali che fino ad ora sono risuonate sulle prime pagine dei giornali. Deutsche Bank è solo l'ultima di una lunga serie. È meglio dire che più si tengono in vita e più si rimanda nel tempo la correzione degli errori economici, più alacre sarà infine la correzione recessiva.
Infatti la banca tedesca è di gran lunga più sistemica rispetto alla Lehman e il suo parco derivati è venti volte più grande del PIL tedesco. Inutile dire che la situazione è peggiorata, poiché come è stato detto sopra, il canale della trasmissione monetaria all'economia più ampia è rotto a causa del raggiungimento della condizione di Picco del Debito, quindi lo stimolo monetario partorito dalle banche centrali è rimasto confinato nel circuito finanziario. Il denaro creato ex-novo è andato a saturare i bilanci delle grandi imprese, le quali, non potendo più contare su segnali economici genuini, non hanno potuto far altro che sostenersi non attraverso una domanda genuina di mercato, bensì attraverso l'ingegneria finanziaria.
Ciò non ha fatto altro che far aumentare debiti e capacità in eccesso in quei settori ritenuti superflui dalle priorità d'acquisto degli attori di mercato. Ma le banche commerciali ormai detengono parecchio di tale debito, per non parlare delle banche centrali. Ed per questo motivo che, ad esempio, la BCE sta prendendo in considerazione la possibilità di estendere il proprio programma di QE al settore azionario. Finora questo atteggiamento interventista non ha fatto altro che scatenare crisi sempre più grandi: crollo immobiliare e azionario giapponesi nel 1989, crisi asiatica del debito nel 1997, crisi russa del debito nel 1998, bolla dot-com nel 2001, bolla immobiliare nel 2008. Queste mosse, comunque, per quanto disperate hanno un progenitore unico, un paziente zero: il Giappone.
DUE CASI DI STUDIO: ARGENTINA E GIAPPONE
Sebbene il Giappone possa essere il paziente zero per eccellenza, ne esiste un altro. In questo segmento analizzerò la storia economica di entrambi per tracciare una linea continua e dimostrare come la presunta onniscienza dei pianificatori monetari centrali, altro non è che uno specchietto per le allodole per trarre in inganno gli sprovveduti e truffarli, generando solamente distruzione economica. L'altro esempio è l'Argentina.
Alla fine del XIX secolo le terre argentine erano carezzate da idee liberali, e uno stato minimo unito a tasse basse, rendevano quei posti appetibili agli immigrati. In quel periodo l'Argentina era praticamente considerata alla stregua degli Stati Uniti: un luogo con una moneta sonante e una burocrazia praticamente assente. I flussi migratori erano in ascesa e il paese prosperava, grazie ad una politica praticamente improntata sul laissez-faire. In meno di una generazione, la nazione divenne la terza più ricca del pianeta. L'intera America Latina guardava con invidia a come il commercio scorresse florido nelle pampa e come l'Argentina fosse diventata accogliente dimora delle principali migliorie tecnologiche del secolo.
Ma quando il nido inizia a farsi pieno di uova, ecco arrivare un approfittatore pronto a trarne vantaggio. Nel nostro caso si tratta delle persone che "sanno (apparentemente) di più", coloro in grado di migliorare le vite altrui mettendo a disposizione della collettività il proprio ingegno. È proprio questo il problema: una mente che spaccia la propria conoscenza come universale. E allora ecco che iniziano a serpeggiare le idee collettiviste, facendo spazio a rigidi cambiamenti che hanno lo scopo di incasellare quanto più possibile la vita degli individui in modo da renderli prevedibili agli occhi del pianificatore centrale di turno. Le asimmetrie informative lasciano spazio a presunte simmetrie, che in realtà non cancellano le prime bensì tentano di sovrapporvisi. Il decentramento lascia, quindi, spazio ad un persistente accentramento. La prosperità lascia spazio al declino.
Ed è proprio questo quello che accadde all'Argentina a partire dalla prima guerra mondiale. Tal processo accelerò con la Grande Depressione degli anni '30, dove il crollo dei prezzi delle commodity assestò un duro colpo all'economia argentina. In poco tempo la corsa verso la prosperità divenne la corsa per appropriarsi delle ricchezze degli altri, con una classe dirigente sempre più opportunista e dedita ad espropriare i creatori di ricchezza. Il colpo di grazie arrivò nello stesso periodo quando venne istituita la banca centrale ed essa provvedette a fare il suo "lavoro": svalutare la moneta. Durante gli anni '40, e le carneficine di massa in Europa, l'Argentina sperimentò un periodo di tregua, con la sua industria alimentare che lavorava a pieno ritmo per soddisfare una domanda mondiale crescente. Il problema, però, si presentò al momento della fine della guerra, dove la domanda mondiale cambiò in base alle nuove condizioni e le industrie alimentari argentine chiedevano protezione.
L'ascesa di Péron, un uomo militare, fu la goccia che fece traboccare il vaso: le industrie vennero nazionalizzate e divennero inefficienti, le riserve d'oro e dollari evaporarono, le ferrovie vennero nazionalizzate e divennero inefficienti, i mezzi di divulgazione (radio, giornali, ecc.) vennero nazionalizzati e divennero inefficienti, ecc. Il paese non stava facendo altro che mangiare i semi che aveva messo da parte piuttosto che piantarli per far crescere nuove colture. L'unico intervallo in cui sembrò che questo declino dovesse arrestarsi fu i dieci anni di governo di Menem, i quali, sebbene non fossero improntati secondo un'ottica di mercato, diedero al paese un po' di respiro cercando in qualche modo di restringere le spire dello stato. Ma quelle di Menem erano mezze misure, completamente inadeguate per curare i malanni della pianificazione centrale del paese.
Infatti non bastò agganciare il peso al dollaro, visto che i malanni alla base dell'economia argentina erano incarnati in una teoria economica votata all'irresponsabilità. L'espansionismo monetario artificiale coadiuvato dalla riserva frazionaria del sistema bancario commerciale, resero inutile questa mossa di ridare forza al peso. Prima o poi situazioni simili vanno fuori controllo, e ciò fu il caso nel novembre 2001 quando in Argentina vennero emanati controlli sui prezzi e controlli sui capitali: vennero limitati i prelievi di denaro e venne limitata l'esportazione di capitali. Il quadro nefasto venne completato quando, l'anno successivo, il peso venne pesantemente svalutato nei confronti del dollaro e tutti coloro con un con un conto di risparmio o deposito in peso, si videro derubati del 30% dei loro risparmi/depositi. Il problema non era il peg col dollaro, ma la politica economica sbagliata.
E per nascondere le loro colpe, i pianificatori monetari centrali fecero di peggio: prima congelarono tutti i conti di deposito/risparmio sopra i $3,000 e poi tutti i conti in dollari vennero convertiti forzatamente in pesos. Visto che la maggior di tali conti era proprio in dollari, e che all'epoca il peso valeva $0.60, i pianificatori monetari centrali attuarono un vero e proprio furto nei confronti della popolazione argentina per salvaguardare il sistema economico finanziario così com'era.
In sostanza, sembra che l'economia argentina, sin dal secondo dopoguerra, sia stata sottoposta a quello che io definisco "continuo waterboarding economico". Un processo di alti e bassi che segue un trend discendente. Infatti, dopo l'inizio del secolo, nonostante la tirannia economica che hanno dovuto sopportare gli attori di mercato argentini, il paese è tornato brevemente a respirare agganciandosi al treno del ciclo economico stimolato dalle politiche monetarie allentate statunitensi. In particolare, ha tratto nuovamente vantaggio dall'aumento del prezzo delle commodity
Su queste pagine continuavo a ripetere che i dati ufficiali argentini erano falsati. Era praticamente impossibile un incremento dei salari del 25%-30% in un'economia con un'inflazione (presumibilmente) all'8%. Avrebbe comportato un incremento del costo del lavoro assolutamente insostenibile, a meno che non ci fosse stato un incremento di produttività del lavoro a sostegno dei tassi di crescita dell'economia. Davvero era possibile una cosa del genere in un luogo in cui la Kirchener aveva nazionalizzato le due più grandi linee aeree del paese? Davvero era possibile una cosa del genere in un luogo in cui la Kirchener aveva nazionalizzato le più grandi aziende petrolifere? Davvero era possibile una cosa del genere in un luogo in cui la Kirchener aveva nazionalizzato i fondi pensione? Davvero era possibile una cosa del genere in un luogo in cui la Kirchener aveva imposto tasse ingombranti sulle esportazioni?
La cosa più probabile è che l'inflazione non fosse all'8%, ma al 20%-25%. Ciò non esclude altre macchinazioni statistiche, come un deflatore del PIL minore di quello corretto. Ora il Financial Times riporta che l'ufficio di statistica argentina comunicherà le revisioni sui conti del PIL e che uno studio condotto dall'Università di Harvard, in collaborazione con l'Università di Buenos Aires, evidenzia come il PIL argentino andrebbe corretto al ribasso del 40%. Insomma sembra ormai assodato, oltre ogni ragionevole dubbio, che la Kirchener e il suo gruppo di banditi abbiano taroccato i conti.
Dopo le ultime elezioni, il cosiddetto vento del cambiamento ha fatto entrare aria nuova nelle terre argentine. Il neo-eletto Macrì ha promesso di far risorgere il paese dopo che la Kirchener l'ha messo in ginocchio a suon di nazionalizzazioni e stampa monetaria. Ci riuscirà? Probabilmente sarà meno "estremista" rispetto alla sua collega, ciononostante la rinnovata fiducia estera nel paese delle pampa utilizza questo cambiamento come maschera. La verità è che, come ben sappiamo, i mercati sviluppati stanno soffrendo di una fame di rendimenti decenti cronica a causa della politica dei tassi a zero. Questo spinge coloro che hanno il compito di far fruttare gli asset (AUM), a correre rischi in base al presunto presupposto che le banche centrali rimarranno accomodanti ancora a lungo. Quindi non è un caso se di recente l'Argentina sia riuscita a piazzare bond spazzatura per $16.5 miliardi.
Sebbene le basi di questa domanda siano marce, la borsa argentina guadagna trazione. Ora, dato che sappiamo che le attenzioni nei confronti dell'Argentina sono fondamentalmente legate ad un mercato drogato di denaro fiat, avvicinarsi al mercato a rendimento fisso non credo sia saggio. Chi vuole puntare sull'Argentina dovrebbe farlo semplicemente per speculare nel breve periodo. Di conseguenza in questa ottica diventa attraente il mercato azionario argentino, in modo da avere una finestra sempre aperta in cui si voglia scappare. Insomma affinché si possa avere una diversificazione quanto più agile possibile. E, a meno di un rimbalzo del petrolio e delle commodity in generale, meglio lasciar stare il comparto energetico e puntare sul comparto delle utilities e del settore bancario.
È quindi iniziato un nuovo giro di "waterboarding economico", con il prigioniero che potrebbe restarci secco da un momento all'altro.
PRIMA TOKYO, POI BUENOS AIRES
Nonostante i fallimenti plateali registrati nelle politiche monetarie e sociali in Argentina, si potrebbe liquidare la cosa come l'ennesimo esperimento socialista del Sud-America. Sotto i nostri occhi ci sono i rimasugli dell'ennesimo laboratorio socialista sud-americano, il Venezuela, dove controlli dei prezzi ed espansionismo monetario sfrenato hanno condannato all'estrema povertà i venezuelani. Fortunatamente ci si sta accorgendo che tirare troppo la corda potrebbe essere deleterio. Ciononostante c'è anche un altro esempio nel mondo moderno che ci permette di affermare come i pianificatori monetari centrali non sanno quello che fanno e lungo il loro cammino lasciano solamente morte e distruzione economica. Un esempio lontano anni luce dai "pregiudizi" riguardanti il Sud-America. Sto parlando del Giappone.
Alla fine del secondo conflitto mondiale, l'economia giapponese era un cumulo di macerie. La guerra aveva riscosso un pedaggio alto soprattutto sulle infrastrutture del paese del sol levante, sia per quanto riguardava le industrie sia per quanto riguardava le abitazioni civili sia per quanto riguardava le vie di comunicazione. Malgrado ciò i giapponesi si rimboccarono le maniche, dando vita ad un boom economico che venne definito "un miracolo". Ovviamente non era nulla di tutto ciò, poiché questo è il normale funzionamento dei mercati quando vengono lasciati liberi di funzionare.
Ma se c'è una cosa che i pianificatori centrali odiano, è persone libere che determinano i mercati in base alle loro esigenze e necessità. Di conseguenza non passò molto prima che intervennero. Sul lato estero, il protezionismo rampante e i dazi sulle importazioni incancrenirono il cosiddetto "miracolo"; sul lato interno, a causa di tasse alte e normative opprimenti, le start-up vennero uccise sul nascere mentre le grandi aziende furono schermate dalla concorrenza. La ciliegina sulla torta ce la mise la BOJ, poiché svalutando lo yen rese attraente il settore dell'export, ma così facendo non fece altro che rendere costose le importazioni (e stiamo parlando di un paese che ci campa con le importazioni) e sovvenzionare artificialmente il benessere degli altri paesi. Inutile dire che in questo modo le grandi aziende divennero praticamente a tutti gli effetti branche dello stato, e tutto ciò a scapito della produttività.
La spirale di morte dell'economia giapponese è peggiorata definitivamente all'incirca tre decenni fa, andando ad acuire tutti quegli errori economici che erano stati accumulati in precedenza. La scarsa competitività delle aziende e il cestinamento dello yen hanno portato all'inizio della resa dei conti, accelerando il corso della legge dei rendimenti decrescenti. Il punto cruciale è sempre stato unico: il Lunedì Nero e la scoperta della stampante monetaria nel seminterrato della FED da parte di Greenspan. Quest'ultimo per smorzare la correzione dei mercati avviò le rotative dell'Eccles Building, facendo scendere il dollaro in rapporto alle altre valute del mondo. Questo significa che lo yen, nel nostro caso, raddoppiò di valore, andando ad incidere sul lato delle esportazioni del paese. Perseguendo una politica mercantilista, la BOJ rispose allentando pesantemente la sua posizione monetaria, iniettando nuova liquidità nel sistema economico che trovò dimora soprattutto nel valore dei terreni.
Il settore finanziario divenne estremamente gonfio e il Nikkei quadruplicò i suoi numeri. La crescita smisurata del settore finanziario è un chiaro segno di bolla gonfiata dal settore bancario centrale, ma diversamente da oggi in cui la maggior parte delle economie sviluppate ha raggiunto una condizione di Picco del Debito, all'epoca il canale della trasmissione monetaria con l'economia di Main Street era ancora integro. Infatti questa follia monetaria risultò in famiglie e piccole/medie imprese che contrassero enormi quantità di debiti supportati da risparmi inesistenti. Era inevitabile che questa bolla scoppiasse, dato il restringimento del bacino della ricchezza reale che comportava. Il 1989 fu l'anno fatidico: il Nikkei crollò di oltre l'80% del suo precedente valore, i prezzi delle case colarono a picco, e la crescita del PIL finì ad un anemico 1%.
Il successivo "decennio perduto" non è stato altro che il periodo in cui l'economia giapponese ha cercato di ripulirsi da tutti gli errori al suo interno, ma questo processo è stato costantemente impedito dalla successiva intrusione della pianificazione monetaria centrale.
Ormai sono tre anni che la BOJ sta tentando disperatamente di raggiungere quell'obiettivo d'inflazione del 2% che considera la panacea di tutti i mali economici. Come vediamo dal grafico qui sopra, lo stimolo monetario è servito a poco o niente per far rimettere in carreggiata l'economia giapponese. E quindi cos'ha fatto la BOJ ogni volta che è risultato palese come la formula "più della stessa cosa" non funzionava? Ha raddoppiato la dose. Oltre ad essere diventata il market maker nel mercato obbligazionario giapponese, ha inglobato nel proprio bilancio ETF azionari e J-Reit (fondi immobiliari). Più è intervenuta, più gli effetti transitori del QE sono svaniti più in fretta, lasciando il disastro conseguente: salari reali stagnanti, incapacità di competere da parte delle aziende, redditi fissi esposti all'inflazione seppur "contenuta" (almeno come calcolata dai mulini statistici dello stato). Ma quando il mercato diventa saturo di errori economici inizia a non rispondere più agli stimoli centrali, avviando correzioni ad ogni minimo accenno di panico. Questo significa deflazione dei prezzi per quegli asset gonfiati artificialmente dalla precedente manna monetaria artificiale.
Kuroda, però, ha continuato a scendere lungo la scala del dissesto economico, implementando tassi negativi del -0.10% sulle riserve in eccesso detenute dalle banche commerciali presso la BOJ. Non solo, ecco l'ennesima follia: la BOJ comprerà qualsiasi decennale sovrano affinché il relativo rendimento sia inchiodato allo zero. Quindi la BOJ pensa di stabilizzare il mercato obbligazionario facendo sprofondare la curva dei rendimenti antecedente il decennale nella zona del sotto zero, e, nel frattempo, fornire alle banche commerciali possibilità di un briciolo di rendimento frenando gli acquisti successivi al decennale giapponese. In sostanza le banche commerciali potranno mostrare bilanci positivi a fine anno, grazie all'acquisto di trentennali giapponesi ad esempio. Qual è l'inghippo? Se i tassi a breve termine scenderanno ancor di più nel sottoscala della storia economica, le banche commerciali saranno costrette a traslare i costi derivanti da questo effetto sui depositanti. Questo vuol dire spostamento dei tassi negativi sui conti dei depositanti, oppure aumento degli interessi richiesti per i prestiti.
Esatto. A pagare il conto della follia monetaria giapponese saranno i contribuenti e i depositanti. Siamo passati dal quantitative easing al quantitative and qualitative easing, fino a giungere adesso al quantitative and qualitative easing in check with the yield curve. Il fine ultimo dei pazzi monetari è quello di diluire nel tempo l'onerosità del debito pubblico, ma, come nel caso dell'Argentina, il cosiddetto waterboarding economico sta portando alla morte il paziente: la legge dei rendimenti decrescenti sta accelerando il suo corso. Giappone e Argentina hanno semplicemente tracciato la via lungo la quale anche il resto dell'Occidente ha iniziato a camminare. Se volete un assaggio del futuro, guardate al dissesto economico che hanno provocato in quelle terre i pianificatori monetari centrali
Ci sono parecchie bombe finanziarie ad orologeria innescate nell'attuale panorama economico. Dal mercato azionario, a quello obbligazionario, ai problemi crescenti del comparto bancario commerciale, allo stress politico, al rallentamento economico globale, fino al fatto più importante: la perdita della fiducia. È questa la moneta più commerciata nel mondo finanziario di oggi. Ma è evanescente, non è sonante. L'attuale sistema economico, quindi, è fondato su basi argillose che lo stanno man mano fagocitando. Durante la discesa, l'Occidente seguirà il percorso suicida già intrapreso da Giappone e Argentina. Questi due paesi sono il simbolo per eccellenza di come i pianificatori monetari centrali sono risuciti a distruggere la prosperità economica. La stessa storia si ripeterà in quei paesi che hanno scioccamente deciso di seguire le loro orme. Invece d'imparare dagli errori, stanno perseverando negli errori. Finirà male.
Contrary to popular belief on the impact of US Presidential election results, Marc Faber the author of the The Gloom, Boom & Doom Report, is of the view that Hillary Clinton’s victory may not be positive for the global markets. Calling Hillary Clinton a war monger, Faber says that if she is elected, international tensions will increase. “The belief is that if Trump gets elected then it would be negative for the asset markets, US markets. A Hillary victory would be positive. I am not so sure about this belief because Hillary is basically a neocon and a war monger,” Faber told CNBC TV-18. “She has supported the invasion of a variety of countries already. So her election may lead to more international tensions,” Faber said.
Faber believes that Trump as US President would be more aware of America’s declining super power status. “Trump is more aware of the fact that the US super power stand is gradually waning and that other countries are coming up. He knows that US cannot fight the whole world and that it cannot be the policeman to the whole world. US has to gradually start negotiating with other countries on equal terms,” says Faber.
While stating that US media and even the US Federal Reserve are supporting Hillary Clinton, Faber said that irrespective of who becomes the US President, central banks will continue to print money. “There is no other way out. The system is basically bankrupt so money printing will continue,” he said.
Who won or lost last night’s debate doesn’t really matter. What matters is that Trump wasn’t able to score the knock-out blows required to impact his declining polling numbers in a meaningful way. Meanwhile, of all the points made in last night’s debate, the only one that seems to matter to the mainstream media this morning is that Trump is somehow plotting to overthrow our democracy by refusing to accept election results on November 8th.
Of course, facts do seem to support Trump’s claim that the election is rigged and not just as a result of a biased mainstream media that refuses to cover Hillary’s various scandals. In fact, according to research conducted by the Pew Research Center in 2012, the capacity for voter fraud in the U.S. is substantial with nearly 2mm dead people found to be registered voters and nearly 3mm people registered in multiple states.
- Approximately 24 million—one of every eight—voter registrations in the United States are no longer valid or are significantly inaccurate
- More than 1.8 million deceased individuals are listed as voters
- Approximately 2.75 million people have registrations in more than one state
Add to that the recent Project Veritas videos showing democratic operatives paying people to incite violence at republican rallies and actually bragging about “bussing” in out-of-state voters to commit massive voter fraud and Trump’s claims of “election rigging” seem hard to deny.
After watching those videos, does this tweet really seem all that inaccurate?
Of course there is large scale voter fraud happening on and before election day. Why do Republican leaders deny what is going on? So naive!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 17, 2016
Of course, according to The Hill, republicans this morning are jumping at the opportunity to bash their own party’s nominee with Lindsey Graham saying that “Trump is doing the party and our country a great disservice.”
Many Republicans were tired of Trump’s talk about a rigged election before his remarks on Wednesday night that he would not commit to accepting the legitimacy of the vote count on Election Day.
Trump said there are “millions of people” who are registered to vote illegally, alleged that the media has “poisoned the minds of the voters,” and pledged to keep the nation in “suspense” over whether he’d concede the race to Clinton.
Trump’s critics seized on his remarks after the debate, and Republicans down the ballot will be forced to weigh in over the coming days.
Several jumped at the chance.
“Mr. Trump is doing the party and our country a great disservice by continuing to suggest the outcome of this election is out of his hands and ‘rigged’ against him,” said Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.). “It will not be because the system is ‘rigged’ but because he failed as a candidate.”
.@realDonaldTrump saying that he might not accept election results is beyond the pale
— Jeff Flake (@JeffFlake) October 20, 2016
Of course, other topics were discussed during the debate with Trump seemingly scoring points during the abortion scuffle, the supreme court discussion and Hillary’s various FBI, email and foundation scandals. That said, we suspect none of it really matters and is already forgotten.
The GOP nominee ably defended the conservative position against abortion and stayed on the attack against Clinton on her biggest vulnerabilities, raising questions about the FBI’s investigation into her private email server, donations from foreign governments to the Clinton Foundation and revelations from the WikiLeaks email dumps.
Regardless, as we said in the beginning of this post, none it really matters as the key takeaway from last night was that “Trump needed a campaign-altering moment, and it didn’t happen.”
He will enter the final three weeks before Election Day trailing badly and with his support teetering on the edge of full collapse, stirring Republican fears that they could lose the House majority.
The days of Trump boasting about his polling numbers and his prospects in blue states are long gone.
Trump’s attacks against Clinton and the message that turned him into a winner in the GOP primaries won’t be enough to get him back to that place.
So, outside of some new bombshell development from WikiLeaks or wherever, we suspect this one is in the bag.
Reprinted with permission from Zero Hedge.
This essay was first published under the title of The Political Thought of Étienne de La Boétie.
Étienne de La Boétie has been best remembered as the great and close friend of the eminent essayist Michel de Montaigne, in one of history’s most notable friendships. But he would be better remembered, as some historians have come to recognize, as one of the seminal political philosophers, not only as a founder of modern political philosophy in France but also for the timeless relevance of many of his theoretical insights.
Étienne de La Boétie was born in Sarlat, in the Périgord region of southwest France, in 1530, to an aristocratic family. His father was a royal official of the Périgord region and his mother was the sister of the president of the Bordeaux Parlement (assembly of lawyers). Orphaned at an early age, he was brought up by his uncle and namesake, the curate of Bouilbonnas, and received his law degree from the University of Orléans in 1553. His great and precocious ability earned La Boétie a royal appointment to the Bordeaux Parlement the following year, despite his being under the minimum age. There he pursued a distinguished career as judge and diplomatic negotiator until his untimely death in 1563, at the age of thirty-two. La Boétie was also a distinguished poet and humanist, translating Xenophon and Plutarch, and being closely connected with the leading young Pleiade group of poets, including Pierre Ronsard, Jean Dorat, and Jean-Antoine de Baif.
La Boétie’s great contribution to political thought was written while he was a law student at the University of Orléans, where he imbibed the spirit of free inquiry that prevailed there. In this period of questing and religious ferment, the University of Orléans was a noted center of free and untrammeled discussion. La Boétie’s main teacher there was the fiery Anne du Bourg, later to become a Huguenot martyr, and burned at the stake for heresy in 1559. Du Bourg was not yet a Protestant, but was already tending in that direction, and it was no accident that this University was later to become a center of Calvinism, nor that some of La Boétie’s fellow students were to become Huguenot leaders. One of these was La Boétie’s best friend at the University, and Du Bourg’s favorite student, Lambert Daneau. The study of law in those days was an exciting enterprise, a philosophical search for truth and fundamental principles. In the sixteenth century, writes Paul Bonnefon, “The teaching of the law was a preaching rather than an institution, a sort of search for truth, carried on by teacher and student in common, and which they feverishly undertook together, opening up an endless field for philosophic speculation.” It was this kind of atmosphere in the law schools of Orléans and other leading French universities in which Calvin himself, two decades earlier, had begun to develop his ideas of Protestant Reform. And it was in that kind of atmosphere, as well, that lawyers were to form one of the most important centers of Calvinist strength in France.
In the ferment of his law school days at Orléans, Étienne de La Boétie composed his brief but scintillating, profound and deeply radical Discourse of Voluntary Servitude (Discours de la Servitude Volontaire) The
The first striking thing about the monarchomach writers (those sectarian writers who argued for the right of subjects to resist unjust rulers) of the 1570’s and 1580’s, whom La Boétie resembled in his opposition to tyranny. While the Huguenot monarchomachs, best exemplified by François Hotman’s Franco-Gallia
In his abstract, universal reasoning, his development of a true political philosophy, and his frequent references to classical antiquity, La Boétie followed the method of Renaissance writers, notably Niccolò Machiavelli. There was, however, a crucial difference: whereas Machiavelli attempted to instruct the Prince on ways of cementing his rule, La Boétie was dedicated to discussing ways to overthrow him and thus to secure the liberty of the individual. Thus, Emile Brehier makes a point of contrasting the cynical realism of Machiavelli with the “juridical idealism” of Étienne de La Boétie. In fact, however, La Boétie’s concentration on abstract reasoning and on the universal rights of the individual might better be characterized as foreshadowing the political thinking of the eighteenth century. As J. W. Allen writes, the Discoursewas an “essay on the natural liberty, equality and fraternity of man.” The essay “gave a general support to the Huguenot pamphleteers by its insistence that natural law and natural rights justified forcible resistance to tyrannous government.” But the language of universal natural rights itself, Allen correctly adds, “served no Huguenot purpose. It served, in truth, no purpose at all at the time, though, one day, it might come to do so.” Or, as Harold Laski trenchantly put it: “A sense of popular right such as the friend of Montaigne depicts is, indeed, as remote from the spirit of the time as the anarchy of Herbert Spencer in an age committed to government interference.”
The contrast between the proto-eighteenth-century speculative natural rights approach of La Boétie, and the narrowly legalistic and concrete-historical emphasis of the Huguenot writers who reprinted and used the
The Discourse of Voluntary Servitude
This, then, becomes for La Boétie the central problem of political theory:
I should like merely to understand how it happens that so many men, so many villages, so many cities, so many nations, sometimes suffer under a single tyrant who has no other power than the power they give him; who is able to harm them only to the extent to which they have the willingness to bear with him; who could do them absolutely no injury unless they preferred to put up with him rather than contradict him. Surely a striking situation! Yet it is so common that one must grieve the more and wonder the less at the spectacle of a million men serving in wretchedness, their necks under the yoke, not constrained by a greater multitude than they… 
And this mass submission must be out of consent rather than simply out of fear:
Shall we call subjection to such a leader cowardice? … If a hundred, if a thousand endure the caprice of a single man, should we not rather say that they lack not the courage but the desire to rise against him, and that such an attitude indicates indifference rather than cowardice? When not a hundred, not a thousand men, but a hundred provinces, a thousand cities, a million men, refuse to assail a single man from whom the kindest treatment received is the infliction of serfdom and slavery, what shall we call that? Is it cowardice? … When a thousand, a million men, a thousand cities, fail to protect themselves against the domination of one man, this cannot be called cowardly, for cowardice does not sink to such a depth… What monstrous vice, then, is this which does not even deserve to be called cowardice, a vice for which no term can be found vile enough … ? 
It is evident from the above passages that La Boétie is bitterly opposed to tyranny and to the public’s consent to its own subjection. He makes clear also that this opposition is grounded on a theory of natural law and a natural right to liberty. In childhood, presumably because the rational faculties are not yet developed, we obey our parents; but when grown, we should follow our own reason, as free individuals. As La Boétie puts it: “If we led our lives according to the ways intended by nature and the lessons taught by her, we should be intuitively obedient to our parents; later we should adopt reason as our guide and become slaves to nobody.” Reason is our guide to the facts and laws of nature and to humanity’s proper path, and each of us has “in our souls some native seed of reason, which, if nourished by good counsel and training, flowers into virtue, but which, on the other hand, if unable to resist the vices surrounding it, is stifled and blighted.” And reason, La Boétie adds, teaches us the justice of equal liberty for all. For reason shows us that nature has, among other things, granted us the common gift of voice and speech. Therefore, “there can be no further doubt that we are all naturally free,” and hence it cannot be asserted that “nature has placed some of us in slavery.” Even animals, he points out, display a natural instinct to be free. But then, what in the world “has so, denatured man that he, the only creature really born to be free, lacks the memory of his original condition and the desire to return to it?”
La Boétie’s celebrated and creatively original call for civil disobedience, for mass non-violent resistance as a method for the overthrow of tyranny, stems directly from the above two premises: the fact that all rule rests on the consent of the subject masses, and the great value of natural liberty. For if tyranny really rests on mass consent, then the obvious means for its overthrow is simply by mass
Thus, after concluding that all tyranny rests on popular consent, La Boétie eloquently concludes that “obviously there is no need of fighting to overcome this single tyrant, for he is automatically defeated if the country refuses consent to its own enslavement.” Tyrants need not be expropriated by force; they need only be deprived of the public’s continuing supply of funds and resources. The more one yields to tyrants, La Boétie points out, the stronger and mightier they become. But if the tyrants “are simply not obeyed,” they become “undone and as nothing.” La Boétie then exhorts the “poor, wretched, and stupid peoples” to cast off their chains by refusing to supply the tyrant any further with the instruments of their own oppression. The tyrant, indeed, has nothing more than the power that you confer upon him to destroy you. Where has he acquired enough eyes to spy upon you, if you do not provide them yourselves? How can he have so many arms to beat you with, if he does not borrow them from you? The feet that trample down your cities, where does he get them if they are not your own? How does he have any power over you except through you? How would he dare assail you if he had not cooperation from you?
La Boétie concludes his exhortation by assuring the masses that to overthrow the tyrant they need not act, nor shed their blood. They can do so “merely by willing to be free.” In short,
Resolve to serve no more, and you are at once freed. I do not ask that you place hands upon the tyrant to topple him over, but simply that you support him no longer; then you will behold him, like a great Colossus whose pedestal has been pulled away, fall of his own weight and break in pieces.
It was a medieval tradition to justify tyrannicide of unjust rulers who break the divine law, but La Boétie’s doctrine, though non-violent, was in the deepest sense far more radical. For while the assassination of a tyrant is simply an isolated individual act within an existing political system, mass civil disobedience, being a direct act on the part of large masses of people, is far more revolutionary in launching a transformation of the system itself. It is also more elegant and profound in theoretical terms, flowing immediately as it does from La Boétie’s insight about power necessarily resting on popular consent; for then the remedy to power is simply to withdraw that consent.
The call for mass civil disobedience was picked up by one of the more radical of the later Huguenot pamphlets, La France Turquie (1575), which advocated an association of towns and provinces for the purpose of refusing to pay all taxes to the State. But it is not surprising that among the most enthusiastic advocates of mass civil disobedience have been the anarchist thinkers, who simply extend both La Boétie’s analysis and his conclusion from tyrannical rule to all governmental rule whatsoever. Prominent among the anarchist advocates of non-violent resistance have been Thoreau, Tolstoy, and Benjamin R. Tucker, all of the nineteenth century, and all, unsurprisingly, associated with the non-violent, pacifist branch of anarchism. Tolstoy, indeed, in setting forth his doctrine of non-violent anarchism, used a lengthy passage from the Discourse as the focal point for the development of his argument. In addition, Gustav Landauer, the leading German anarchist of the early twentieth century, after becoming converted to a pacifist approach, made a rousing summary of La Boétie’s Discourse of Voluntary Servitude the central core of his anarchist work, Die Revolution (1919). A leading Dutch pacifist-anarchist of the twentieth century, Barthelemy de Ligt, not only devoted several pages of his Conquest of Violence to discussion and praise of La Boétie’s Discourse; he also translated it into Dutch in 1933.
Several historians of anarchism have gone so far as to classify La Boétie’s treatise itself as anarchist, which is incorrect since La Boétie never extended his analysis from tyrannical government to government per se. But while La Boétie cannot be considered an anarchist, his sweeping strictures on tyranny and the universality of his political philosophy lend themselves easily to such an expansion. All this considerably disturbed La Boétie’s biographer, Paul Bonnefon, who wrote of the Discourse:
After having failed to distinguish legitimate from illicit authority, and having imprudently attacked even the principle of authority, La Boétie put forth a naïve illusion. He seems to believe that man could live in a state of nature, without society and without government, and discovered that this situation would be filled with happiness for humanity. This dream is puerile…
To the acute analyst Pierre Mesnard, Bonnefon’s alarm is wide of the mark; Mesnard believes that La Boétie defined tyranny as simply any exercise of personal power. In doing so, La Boétie went beyond the traditional twofold definition of tyranny as either usurpation of power, or government against the “laws” (which were either defined as customary law, divine law, or the natural law for the “common good” of the people). Whereas the traditional theory thus focused only on the means of the ruler’s acquiring power; and the use made of that power, Mesnard points out that La Boétie’s definition of tyranny went straight to thenature of power itself. Tyranny does not depend, as many of the older theorists had supposed, on illicit means of acquiring power, the tyrant need not be a usurper. As La Boétie declares, “There are three kinds of tyrants: some receive their proud position through elections by the people, others by force of arms, others by inheritance.” Usurpers or conquerors always act as if they are ruling a conquered country and those born to kingship “are scarcely any better, because they are nourished on the breast of tyranny, suck in with their milk the instincts of the, tyrant, and consider the people under them as their inherited serfs. As for elected they would seem to be “more bearable,” but they are always intriguing to convert the election into a hereditary despotism, and hence “surpass other tyrants … in cruelty, because they find no other means to impose this new tyranny than by tightening control and removing their subjects so far from any notion of liberty that even if the memory of it is fresh it will soon be eradicated.” In sum, La Boétie can find no choice between these three kinds of tyrants:
For although the means of coming into power differ, still the method of ruling is practically the same; those who are elected act as if they were breaking in bullocks; those who are conquerors make the people their prey; those who are heirs plan to treat them as if they were their natural slaves.
Yet Mesnard’s neat conclusion – that La Boétie meant simply to indict all personal power, all forms of monarchy, as being tyrannical – is inadequate. In the first place, in the passage quoted above La Boétie indicts elected as well as other rulers. Moreover, he states that, “having several masters, according to the number one has, it amounts to being that many times unfortunate.” These are not precisely indictments of the concept of a republic, but they leave the definition of tyranny in La Boétie sufficiently vague so that one can easily press on the anarchist conclusions.
Why do people continue to give their consent to despotism? Why do they permit tyranny to continue? This is especially puzzling if tyranny (defined at least as all personal power) must rest on mass consent, and if the way to overthrow tyranny is therefore for the people to withdraw that consent. The remainder of La Boétie’s treatise is devoted to this crucial problem, and his discussion here is as seminal and profound as it is in the earlier part of the work.
The establishment of tyranny, La Boétie points out, is most difficult at the outset, when it is first imposed. For generally, if given a free choice, people will vote to be free rather than to be slaves: “There can be no doubt that they would much prefer to be guided by reason itself than to be ordered about by the whims of a single man.” A possible exception was the voluntary choice by the Israelites to imitate other nations in choosing a king (Saul). Apart from that, tyranny can only be initially imposed by conquest or by deception. The conquest may be either by foreign armies or by an internal factional coup. The deception occurs in cases where the people, during wartime emergencies, select certain persons as dictators, thus providing the occasion for these individuals to fasten their power permanently upon the public. Once begun, however, the maintenance of tyranny is permitted and bolstered by the insidious throes of habit, which quickly accustom the people to enslavement.
It is true that in the beginning men submit under constraint and by force; but those who come after them obey without regret and perform willingly what their predecessors had done because they had to. This is why men born under the yoke and then nourished and reared in slavery are content, without further effort, to live in their native circumstance, unaware of any other state or right, and considering as quite natural the condition into which they are born … the powerful influence of custom is in no respect more compelling than in this, namely, habituation to subjection.
Thus, humanity’s natural drive for liberty is finally overpowered by the force of custom, for the reason that native endowment, no matter how good, is dissipated unless encouraged, whereas environment always shapes us in its own way, whatever that might be in spite of nature’s gifts. Therefore, those who are born enslaved should be pitied and forgiven, “since they have not seen even the shadow of liberty, and being quite unaware of it, cannot perceive the evil endured through their own slavery….” While, in short, “it is truly the nature of man to be free and to wish to be so,” yet a person’s character “instinctively follows the tendencies that his training gives him…” La Boétie concludes that “custom becomes the first reason for voluntary servitude.” People will
grow accustomed to the idea that they have always been in subjection, that their fathers lived in the same way; they will think they are obliged to suffer this evil, and will persuade themselves by example and imitation of others, finally investing those who order them around with proprietary rights, based on the idea that it has always been that way. 
Consent is also actively encouraged and engineered by the rulers; and this is another major reason for the persistence of civil obedience. Various devices are used by rulers to induce such consent. One method is by providing the masses with circuses, with entertaining diversions:
Plays, farces, spectacles, gladiators, strange beasts, medals, pictures, and other such opiates, these were for ancient peoples the bait toward slavery, the price of their liberty, the instruments of tyranny. By these practices and enticements the ancient dictators so successfully lulled their subjects under the yoke, that the stupefied peoples, fascinated by the pastimes and vain pleasures flashed before their eyes, learned subservience as naïvely, but not so creditably, as little children learn to read by looking at bright picture books.
Another method of inducing consent is purely ideological: duping the masses into believing that the tyrannical ruler is wise, just, and benevolent. Thus, La Boétie points out, the Roman emperors assumed the ancient title of Tribune of the People, because the concept had gained favor among the public as representing a guardian of their liberties. Hence the assumption of despotism under the cloak of the old liberal form. In modern times, La Boétie adds, rulers present a more sophisticated version of such propaganda, for “they never undertake an unjust policy, even one of some importance, without prefacing it with some pretty speech concerning public welfare and common good.” Reinforcing ideological propaganda is deliberate mystification: “The kings of the Assyrians and … the Medes showed themselves in public as seldom as possible in order to set up a doubt in the minds of the rabble as to whether they were not in some way more than man…” Symbols of mystery and magic were woven around the Crown, so that “by doing this they inspired their subjects with reverence and admiration…. It is pitiful to review the list of devices that early despots used to establish their tyranny; to discover how many little tricks they employed, always finding the populace conveniently gullible….  At times, tyrants have gone to the length of imputing themselves to the very status of divinity: “they have insisted on using religion for their own protection and, where possible, have borrowed a stray bit of divinity to bolster up their evil ways.” Thus, “tyrants, in order to strengthen their power, have made every effort to train their people not only in obedience and servility toward themselves, but also in adoration.” 
At this point, La Boétie inserts his one and only reference to contemporary France. It is on its face extremely damaging, for he asserts that “our own leaders have employed in France certain similar [quasidivine] devices, such as toads, fleurs-de-lys, sacred vessels, and standards with flames of gold [oriflammes].” He quickly adds that in this case he does not “wish, for my part, to be incredulous,” for French kings “have always been so generous in times of peace and so valiant in time of war, that from birth they seem not to have been created by nature like many others, but even before birth to have been designated by Almighty God for the government and preservation of this kingdom.”  In the light of the context of the work, it is impossible not to believe that the intent of this passage is satirical, and this interpretation is particularly confirmed by the passage immediately following, which asserts that “even if this were not so,” he would not question the truth of these French traditions, because they have provided such a fine field for the flowering of French poetry. “Certainly I should be presumptuous,” he concludes, surely ironically, “if I tried to cast slurs on our records and thus invade the realm of our poets.”
Specious ideology, mystery, circuses; in addition to these purely propagandistic devices, another device is used by rulers to gain the consent of their subjects: purchase by material benefits, bread as well as circuses. The distribution of this largesse to the people is also a method, and a particularly cunning one, of duping them into believing that they benefit from tyrannical rule. They do not realize that they are in fact only receiving a small proportion of the wealth already filched from them by their rulers. Thus:
Roman tyrants … provided the city wards with feasts to cajole the rabble…. Tyrants would distribute largesse, a bushel of wheat, a gallon of wine, and a sesterce: and then everybody would shamelessly cry, “Long live the King!” The fools did not realize that they were merely recovering a portion of their own property, and that their ruler could not have given them what they were receiving without having first taken it from them. A man might one day be presented with a sesterce and gorge himself at the public feast, lauding Tiberius and Nero for handsome liberality, who on the morrow, would be forced to abandon his property to their avarice, his children to their lust, his very blood to the cruelty of these magnificent emperors, without offering any more resistance than a stone or a tree stump. The mob has always behaved in this way – eagerly open to bribes… 
And La Boétie goes on to cite the cases of the monstrous tyrannies of Nero and Julius Caesar, each of whose deaths was deeply mourned by the people because of his supposed liberality.
Here La Boétie proceeds to supplement this analysis of the purchase of consent by the public with another truly original contribution, one which Professor Lewis considers to be the most novel and important feature of his theory. This is the establishment, as it were the permanent and continuing purchase, of a hierarchy of subordinate allies, a loyal band of retainers, praetorians and bureaucrats. La Boétie himself considers this factor “the mainspring and the secret of domination, the support and foundation of tyranny.” Here is a large sector of society which is not merely duped with occasional and negligible handouts from the State; here are individuals who make a handsome and permanent living out of the proceeds of despotism. Hence, their stake in despotism does not depend on illusion or habit or mystery; their stake is all too great and all too real. A hierarchy of patronage from the fruits of plunder is thus created and maintained: five or six individuals are the chief advisors and beneficiaries of the favors of the king. These half-dozen in a similar manner maintain six hundred “who profit under them,” and the six hundred in their turn “maintain under them six thousand, whom they promote in rank, upon whom they confer the government of provinces or the direction of finances, in order that they may serve as instruments of avarice and cruelty, executing orders at the proper time and working such havoc all around that they could not last except under the shadow of the six hundred…” 
In this way does the fatal hierarchy pyramid and permeate down through the ranks of society, until “a hundred thousand, and even millions, cling to the tyrant by this cord to which they are tied.” In short,
when the point is reached, through big favors or little ones, that large profits or small are obtained under a tyrant, there are found almost as many people to whom tyranny seems advantageous as those to whom liberty would seem desirable… Whenever a ruler makes himself a dictator, all the wicked dregs of the nation … all those who are corrupted by burning ambition or extraordinary avarice, these gather around him and support him in order to have a share in the booty and to constitute themselves petty chiefs under the big tyrant.
Thus, the hierarchy of privilege descends from the large gainers from despotism, to the middling and small gainers, and finally down to the mass of the people who falsely think they gain from the receipt of petty favors. In this way the subjects are divided, and a great portion of them induced to cleave to the ruler, “just as, in order to split wood, one has to use a wedge of the wood itself.” Of course, the train of the tyrant’s retinue and soldiers suffer at their leader’s hands, but they “can be led to endure evil if permitted to commit it, not against him who exploits them, but against those who like themselves submit, but are helpless.” In short, in return for its own subjection, this order of subordinates is permitted to oppress the rest of the public.
How is tyranny concretely to be overthrown, if it is cemented upon society by habit, privilege and propaganda? How are the people to be brought to the point where they will decide to withdraw their consent? In the first place, affirms La Boétie, not all the people will be deluded or sunk into habitual submission. There is always a more percipient elite who will understand the reality of the situation; “there are always a few, better endowed than others, who feel the weight of the yoke and cannot restrain themselves from attempting to shake it off.” These are the people who, in contrast to “the brutish mass,” possess clear and far-sighted minds, and “have further trained them by study and learning.” Such people never quite disappear from the world: “Even if liberty had entirely perished from the earth, such men would invent it.”
Because of the danger these educated people represent, tyrants often attempt to suppress education in their realms, and in that way those who “have preserved their love of freedom, still remain ineffective because, however numerous they may be, they are not known to one another; under the tyrant they have lost freedom of action, of speech, and almost of thought; they are alone in their aspiration.” Here La Boétie anticipates such modern analysts of totalitarianism as Hannah Arendt. But there is hope; for still the elite exists, and, culling examples once again from antiquity, La Boétie maintains that heroic leaders can arise who will not fail “to deliver their country from evil hands when they set about their task with a firm, whole-hearted and sincere intention.” The evident task, then, of this valiant and knowledgeable elite is to form the vanguard of the revolutionary resistance movement against the despot. Through a process of educating the public to the truth, they will give back to the people knowledge of the blessings of liberty and of the myths and illusions fostered by the State.
In addition to rousing the people to the truth, the opposition movement has another vital string to its bow: the unnatural lives lived by the despots and their hierarchy of favorites. For their lives are miserable and fearful and not happy. Tyrants live in constant and perpetual fear of the well-deserved hatred they know is borne them by every one of their subjects.  Courtiers and favorites live miserable, crawling, cringing lives every moment of which is bent on servilely fawning upon the ruler on whom they depend. Eventually, as enlightenment spreads among the public, the privileged favorites will begin to realize the true misery of their lot, for all their wealth can be seized from them at any moment should they fall out of step in the race for the favors of the king. When they “look at themselves as they really are … they will realize clearly that the townspeople, the peasants whom they trample under foot and treat worse than convicts or slaves … are nevertheless, in comparison with themselves, better off and fairly free.”
Although he does not explicitly say so, it seems to be La Boétie’s contention that the spread of enlightenment among the public will not only generate refusal of consent among the mass, but will also aid its course immeasurably by splitting off, by driving a wedge inside, a portion of the disaffected privileged bureaucracy.
There is no better way to conclude a discussion of the content of La Boétie’s notable Discourse of Voluntary Servitude than to note Mesnard’s insight that “for La Boétie as for Machiavelli, authority can only be grounded on acceptance by the subjects: except that the one teaches the prince how to compel their acquiescence, while the other reveals to the people the power that would lie in their refusal.”
After graduating from law school, Étienne de La Boétie took up an eminent career as a royal official in Bordeaux. He never published the Discourse, and as he pursued a career in faithful service of the monarch, never a hint did he express along the lines of his earlier treatise. Certainly one of the reasons for Montaigne’s stout insistence on his friend’s conservatism and monarchical loyalty is that La Boétie had changed his political views by the time they met around 1559. Indeed, in late 1562, shortly before he died, La Boétie wrote but did not publish a manuscript forgotten and lost until recent years, in which he, with moderate conservatism, advised the State to punish Protestant leaders as rebels, to enforce Catholicism upon France, but also to reform the abuses of the Church moderately and respectably by the agency of the king and his Parlements. Protestants would then be forced to convert back to Catholicism or leave the country.
Certainly it is far from unusual for a young university student, eagerly caught up in a burst of free inquiry, to be a fiery radical, only to settle into a comfortable and respectable conservatism once well entrenched in a career bound to the emoluments of the status quo. But there seems to be more here than that. For the very abstractness of La Boétie’s argument in the Discourse, the very Renaissance-like remoteness of the discussion from the concrete problems of the France of his day, while universalizing and radicalizing the theory, also permitted La Boétie, even in his early days, to divorce theory from practice. It permitted him to be sincerely radical in the abstract while continuing to be conservative in the concrete. His almost inevitable shift of interest from the abstract to concrete problems in his busy career thereby caused his early radicalism to drop swiftly from sight as if it had never existed.
But if his abstract method permitted La Boétie to abandon his radical conclusions rapidly in the concrete realm, it had an opposite effect on later readers. Its very timelessness made the work ever available to be applied concretely in a radical manner to later problems and institutions. And this was precisely the historical fate of La Boétie’s Discourse. It was first published, albeit anonymously and incompletely, in the radical Huguenot pamphlet, Reveille-Matin des François (1574), probably written by Nicholas Barnaud with the collaboration of Theodore Beza. The full text with the author’s name appeared for the first time two years later, in a collection of radical Huguenot essays compiled by a Calvinist minister at Geneva, Simon Goulard.  Montaigne was furious at the essay’s publication under revolutionary Huguenot auspices. He had intended to publish it himself. Now, however, not only did he refuse to do so, but he tried to refurbish La Boétie’s conservative reputation by successively averring that his friend had been eighteen, and then sixteen, years old at the time of the essay’s writing. For their part, however, even the Huguenots used La Boétie in gingerly fashion. “Attractive as was the spirit of La Boétie’s essay,” writes Harold Laski, “avowed and academic republicanism was meat too strong for the digestion of the time. Not that La Boétie was entirely without influence; but he was used as cautiously as an Anglican bishop might, in the sixties, have an interest in Darwinism.”
Almost completely forgotten in the more peaceful days of the first half of the seventeenth century in France, the Discourse became widely known again during the Enlightenment of the eighteenth century, through being printed as a supplement to Montaigne’s essays, but was not particularly influential. Finally, and unsurprisingly, the essay found its metier in the midst of the French Revolution, when it was twice reprinted. Later the radical Abbe de Lammenais reprinted the Discourse with a “violent” preface of his own, and the same was done by another writer in 1852 to strike back at the coup d’état of Napoleon III. And we have seen how the Discourse inspired the non-violent wing of the anarchist movement in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. As the centuries went on, the abstract argument of the Discourse continued to exert a fascination for radicals and revolutionaries. The speculative thought of the young law student was taking posthumous revenge upon the respectable and eminent official of the Bordeaux Parlement.
La Boétie’s Discourse has a vital importance for the modern reader – an importance that goes beyond the sheer pleasure of reading a great and seminal work on political philosophy, or, for the libertarian, of reading the first libertarian political philosopher in the Western world. For La Boétie speaks most sharply to the problem which all libertarians – indeed, all opponents of despotism – find particularly difficult: the problem of strategy. Facing the devastating and seemingly overwhelming power of the modem State, how can a free and very different world be brought about? How in the world can we get from here to there, from a world of tyranny to a world of freedom? Precisely because of his abstract and timeless methodology, La Boétie offers vital insights into this eternal problem.
In the first place, La Boétie’s insight that any State, no matter how ruthless and despotic, rests in the long run on the consent of the majority of the public, has not yet been absorbed into the consciousness of intellectuals opposed to State despotism. Notice, for example, how many anti-Communists write about Communist rule as if it were solely terror imposed from above on the angry and discontented masses. Many of the errors of American foreign policy have stemmed from the idea that the majority of the population of a country can never accept and believe in Communist ideas, which must therefore be imposed by either a small clique or by outside agents from existing Communist countries. In modern political thought, only the free-market economist Ludwig von Mises has sufficiently stressed the fact that all governments must rest on majority consent.
Since despotic rule is against the interests of the bulk of the population, how then does this consent come about? Again, La Boétie highlights the point that this consent is engineered, largely by propaganda beamed at the populace by the rulers and their intellectual apologists. The devices – of bread and circuses, of ideological mystification – that rulers today use to gull the masses and gain their consent, remain the same as in La Boétie’s days. The only difference is the enormous increase in the use of specialized intellectuals in the service of the rulers. But in this case, the primary task of opponents of modem tyranny is an educational one: to awaken the public to this process, to demystify and desanctify the State apparatus. Furthermore, La Boétie’s analysis both of the engineering of consent and of the role played by bureaucrats and other economic interests that benefit from the State, highlights another critical problem which many modem opponents of statism have failed to recognize: that the problem of strategy is not simply one of educating the public about the “errors” committed by the government. For much of what the State does is not an error at all from its own point of view, but a means of maximizing its power, influence, and income. We have to realize that we are facing a mighty engine of power and economic exploitation, and therefore that, at the very least, libertarian education of the public must include an exposé of this exploitation, and of the economic interests and intellectual apologists who benefit from State rule. By confining themselves to analysis of alleged intellectual “errors,” opponents of government intervention have rendered themselves ineffective. For one thing, they have been beaming their counter-propaganda at a public which does not have the equipment or the interest to follow the complex analyses of error, and which can therefore easily be rebamboozled by the experts in the employ of the State. Those experts, too, must be desanctified, and again La Boétie strengthens us in the necessity of such desanctification.
The libertarian theorist Lysander Spooner, writing over four hundred years after La Boétie, propounded the similar view that the supporters of government consisted largely of “dupes” and “knaves”:
The ostensible supporters of the Constitution, like the ostensible supporters of most other governments, are made up of three classes, viz.: 1. Knaves, a numerous and active class, who see in the government an instrument which they can use for their own aggrandizement or wealth. 2. Dupes – a large class, no doubt – each of whom, because he is allowed one voice out of millions in deciding what he may do with his own person and his own property, and because he is permitted to have the same voice in robbing, enslaving, and murdering others, that others have in robbing, enslaving, and murdering himself, is stupid enough to imagine that he is a “free man,” a “sovereign”; that this is a “free government”; “a government of equal rights,” “the best government on earth,” and such like absurdities. 3. A class who have some appreciation of the evils of government, but either do not see how to get rid of them, or do not choose to so far sacrifice their private interests as to give themselves seriously and earnestly to the work of making a change.
The prime task of education, then, is not simply abstract insight into governmental “errors” in advancing the general welfare, but debamboozling the public on the entire nature and procedures of the despotic State. In that task, La Boétie also speaks to us in his stress on the importance of a perceptive, vanguard elite of libertarian and anti-statist intellectuals. The role of this “cadre” – to grasp the essence of statism and to desanctify the State in the eyes and minds of the rest of the population – is crucial to the potential success of any movement to bring about a free society. It becomes, therefore, a prime libertarian task to discover, coalesce, nurture, and advance its cadre – a task of which all too many libertarians remain completely ignorant. For no amount of oppression or misery will lead to a successful movement for freedom unless such a cadre exists and is able to educate and rally the intellectuals and the general public.
There is also the hint in La Boétie of the importance of finding and encouraging disaffected portions of the ruling apparatus, and of stimulating them to break away and support the opposition to despotism. While this can hardly play a central role in a libertarian movement, all successful movements against State tyranny in the past have made use of such disaffection and inner conflicts, especially in their later stages of development.
La Boétie was also the first theorist to move from the emphasis on the importance of consent, to the strategic importance of toppling tyranny by leading the public to withdraw that consent. Hence, La Boétie was the first theorist of the strategy of mass, non-violent civil disobedience of State edicts and exactions. How practical such a tactic might be is difficult to say, especially since it has rarely been used. But the tactic of mass refusal to pay taxes, for example, is increasingly being employed in the United States today, albeit in a sporadic form. In December 1974 the residents of the city of Willimantic, Connecticut, assembled in a town meeting and rejected the entire city budget three times, finally forcing a tax cut of 9 percent. This is but one example of growing public revulsion against crippling taxation throughout the country.
On a different theme, La Boétie provides us with a hopeful note on the future of a free society. He points out that once the public experiences tyranny for a long time, it becomes inured, and heedless of the possibility of an alternative society. But this means that should State despotism ever be removed, it would be extremely difficult to reimpose statism. The bulwark of habit would be gone, and statism would be seen by all for the tyranny that it is. If a free society were ever to be established, then, the chances for its maintaining itself would be excellent.
More and more, if inarticulately, the public is rebelling, not only against onerous taxation but – in the age of Watergate – against the whole, carefully nurtured mystique of government. Twenty years ago, the historian, Cecilia Kenyon, writing of the Anti-Federalist opponents of the adoption of the U.S. Constitution, chided them for being “men of little faith” – little faith, that is, in a strong central government. It is hard to think of anyone having such unexamined faith in government today. In such an age as ours, thinkers like Étienne de La Boétie have become far more relevant, far more genuinely modern, than they have been for over a century.
 Properly pronounced not, as might be thought, La Bo-ay-see, but rather La Bwettie (with the hard t) as it was pronounced in the Périgord dialect of the region in which La Boétie lived. The definitive discussion of the proper pronunciation may be found in Paul Bonnefon, Oeuvres Completes d’Estienne de La Boétie (Bordeaux: C. Gounouilhou, and Paris: J. Rouam et Cie., 1892), pp. 385–6.
 Bonnefon, op. cit., p. xlvi.
 Pierre Mesnard, L ‘Essor de la Philosophie Politique Au XVle Siecle (Paris: Boivin et Cie., 1936), p. 391.
 Having remained long in manuscript, the actual date of writing the Discourse of Voluntary Servitude remains a matter of dispute. It seems clear, however, and has been so accepted by recent authorities, that Montaigne’s published story that La Boétie wrote the Discourse at the age of eighteen or even of sixteen was incorrect. Montaigne’s statement, as we shall see further below, was probably part of his later campaign to guard his dead friend’s reputation by dissociating him from the revolutionary Huguenots who were claiming La Boétie’s pamphlet for their own. Extreme youth tended to cast the Discourse in the light of a work so youthful that the radical content was hardly to be taken seriously as the views of the author. Internal evidence as well as the erudition expressed in the work make it likely that the Discourse was written in 1552 or 1553, at the age of twenty-two, while La Boétie was at the University. See Bonnefon, op. cit., pp. xxxvi–xxxvii; Mesnard, op. cit., pp. 390–1; and Donald Frame, Montaigne: A Biography (New York: Harcourt Brace, & World, 1965), p. 71. There is no biography of La Boétie. Closest to it is Bonnefon’s “Introduction” to his Oeuvres Completes, op. cit., pp. xi-lxxxv, later reprinted as part of Paul Bonnefon, Montaigne et ses Amis(Paris: Armand Colin et Cie., 1898), I, pp. 103–224.
 Emile Brehier, Histoire de la Philosophie, Vol. I: Moyen Age et Renaissance, cited in Mesnard, op. cit., p. 404n. Also see Joseph Banere, Estienne de La Boétie contre Nicholas Machiavel (Bordeaux, 1908), cited in ibid.
 J. W. Allen, A History of Political Thought in the Sixteenth Century (New York: Barnes and Noble, 1960), p. 314.
 William Fan Church, Constitutional Thought in Sixteenth-Century France (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1941), p. 13 and 13n.
 David Hume independently discovered this principle two centuries later, and phrased it with his usual succinctness and clarity:
Nothing appears more surprising to those who consider human affairs with a philosophical eye, than the easiness with which the many are governed by the few; and the implicit submission, with which men resign their own sentiments and passions to those of their rulers. When we enquire by what means this wonder is effected, we shall find, that, as Force is always on the side of the governed, the governors have nothing to support them but opinion. It is therefore, on opinion only that government is founded; and this maxim extends to the most despotic and military governments, as well as to the most free and most popular.
David Hume, “Of the First Principles of Government,” in Essays, Literary, Moral and Political.
 See p. 46 below.
 p. 48.
 p. 55.
 pp. 55–56.
 p. 56.
 p. 58.
 pp. 50–53.
 The historian Mesnard writes that this theory is “rigorous and profound,” that the critics have never fully grasped its point, and that “it is the humanist solution to the problem of authority.” Mesnard, op. cit., p. 400.
 See Laski, op. cit., p. 29; Allen, op. cit., p. 308.
 Thus, Tolstoy writes:
The situation of the oppressed should not be compared to the constraint used directly by the stronger on the weaker, or by a greater number on a smaller. Here, indeed it is the minority who oppress the majority, thanks to a lie established ages ago by clever people, in virtue of which men despoil each other….
Then, after a long quote from La Boétie, Tolstoy concludes,
It would seem that the workers, not gaining any advantage from the restraint that is exercised on them, should at last realize the lie in which they are living and free themselves in the simplest and easiest way: by abstaining from taking part in the violence that is only possible with their co-operation.
Leo Tolstoy, The Law of Love and the Law of Violence (New York: Rudolph Field, 1948), pp. 42–45.
Furthermore, Tolstoy’s Letter to a Hindu, which played a central role in shaping Ghandi’s thinking toward mass non-violent action, was heavily influenced by La Boétie. See Bartelemy de Ligt, The Conquest of Violence (New York, E.P. Dutton & Co., 1938), pp. 105–6.
 Etienne de La Boétie, Vrijwillige Slavernij (The Hague, 1933, edited by Bart. de Ligt). Cited in Bart. de Ligt, op. cit., p. 289. Also see ibid., pp. 104–6. On Landauer, see ibid., p. 106, and George Woodcock,Anarchism (Cleveland, Ohio: World Pub. Co., 1962), p. 432.
 Among those making this error was Max Nettlau, the outstanding historian of anarchism and himself an anarchist. Max Nettlau, Der Vorfruhling der Anarchie; Ihre Historische Entwicklung den Anfangen bis zum Jahre 1864 (Berlin, 1925). On this see Bert F. Hoselitz, “Publisher’s Preface,” in G.P. Maximoff, ed., The Political Philosophy of Bakunin (Glencoe, Dl.: The Free Press, 1953), pp. 9–10.
The first historian of anarchism, E. V. Zenker, a non-anarchist, made the same mistake. Thus, he wrote of La Boétie’s Discourse, that it contained: “A glowing defence of Freedom, which goes so far that the sense of the necessity of authority disappears entirely. The opinion of La Boétie is that mankind does not need government; it is only necessary that man should really wish it, and he would find himself happy and free again, as if by magic.”
E. V. Zenker, Anarchism (London: Methuen & Co., 1898), pp. 15–16.
 Bonnefon, op. cit., “Introduction,” p. xliii. In short, even Bonnefon, reacting gingerly to the radical nature and implications of La Boétie’s work, classified it as anarchist.
 Mesnard, op. cit., p. 395–6.
 On the classical and medieval concepts of tyranny, see John D. Lewis, “The Development of the Theory of Tyrannicide to 1660″ in Oscar Jaszi and John D. Lewis, Against the Tyrant: The Tradition and Theory of Tyrannicide (Glencoe, Dl.: The Free Press, 1957), pp. 3–96, esp. pp. 3ff., 20ff.
 p. 58.
 pp. 58–59.
 Mesnard writes: “If La Boétie does not distinguish between monarchy and tyranny (as he was charged by Bonnefon), it is precisely because the two are equally illegitimate in his eyes, the first being only a special case of the second.” Mesnard, op. cit., pp. 395–6. La Boétie also levels a general attack on monarchy when he questions whether monarchy has any place among true commonwealths, “since it is hard to believe that there is anything of common wealth in a country where everything belongs to one master.” p. 46.
 p. 46.
 p. 59.
 p. 60.
 p. 61.
 pp. 64–65.
 David Hume was later to write in his essay “Of the Origin of Government”: “Habit soon consolidates what other principles of human nature had imperfectly founded; and men, once accustomed to obedience, never think of departing from that path, in which they and their ancestors have constantly trod. . . .”
 pp. 69–70
 p. 71.
 p. 72.
 p. 73.
 p. 75.
 p. 74.
 pp. 74–75. Bonnefon seizes the occasion to claim his subject as, deep down and in spite of his radical deviations, a good conservative Frenchman at heart: “It was not the intention of the young man to attack the established order. He formally excepts the king of France from his argument, and in terms which are stamped by deference and respect.” Bonnefon, op. cit., p. xli. See also the critique of Bonnefon’s misinterpretation by Mesnard, op. cit., p. 398.
 p. 70.
 Lewis, op. cit. pp. 56–57.
 p. 77.
 p. 78.
 pp. 78–79. John Lewis declares that “La Boétie here put his finger on one important element of tyranny which earlier writers had neglected and which contemporary writers sometimes neglect.” Lewis, op. cit., p. 56.
 pp. 79–80.
 p. 65.
 p. 66.
 pp. 67–68.
 pp. 79–80. Also, pp. 79–86
 See the thoughtful conclusion in Mesnard, op. cit., p. 404. Also see Oscar Jaszi, “The Use and Abuse of Tyrannicide,” in Jaszi and Lewis, op. cit., pp. 254–5.
 Mesnard, op. cit., p. 400.
 This was La Boétie’s Memoir Concerning the Edict of January, 1562. See Frame, op. cit., pp. 72–3, 345.
 Mesnard, op. cit., pp. 405–6.
 See J.H.M. Salmon, The French Religious Wars in English Political Thought (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1959), p. 19n.
 The third volume of the Memoires de L ‘estat de France (1576). See Bonnefon, “Introduction,” op. cit., pp. xlix–l.
 Laski, op. cit., p. 24.
 Cecilia Kenyon, “Men of Little Faith: the Anti-Federalists on the Nature of Representative Government,” William and Mary Quarterly (1955), pp. 3–46.
The Politics of Obedience: The Discourse of Voluntary Servitude by Étienne de La Boétie, written 1552–53, is translated by Harry Kurz for the edition that carried Rothbard’s introduction, “The Political Thought of Étienne de La Boétie.”
The saga of Julian Assange seems to be drawing to a climax – one that will decide the fate of this historic whistleblower who, for years, has been a giant thorn in the side of governments everywhere.
His role in exposing the machinations of the US government over the years earned him the plaudits of liberals – until the Bush era ended, and he started exposing the crimes of the Obama administration and – most pointedly – the hypocrisy and venality of Hillary Clinton and her journalistic camarilla. Now we see right-wing figures like Sean Hannity and – yes! – Donald Trump praising and defending him, while the ostensible liberals take up the cry of the Clinton campaign that he’s a “pawn of the Kremlin” and a “rapist.” Even Glenn Greenwald, formerly a comrade-in-arms, who together with Assange helped Edward Snowden evade the not-so-loving arms of Uncle Sam, has lately sought to distance himself from the founder of WikiLeaks (over the value of “curation”). Nice timing, Glenn!
Funny how that works.
Now we see that the Ecuadorian government, which has provided sanctuary for Assange ever since the frame-up “rape” charges by the Swedes were brought, is succumbing to pressure from Washington to silence him. As Assange released the now famous Podesta emails, that – among other things – exposed the collusion of the media and the Clinton campaign in delicious detail, John Kerry demanded that the Ecuadorians cut off Assange’s Internet access – and they meekly complied. Of course, since leftist Ecuadorian President Rafael Correa has openly endorsed Mrs. Clinton, and openly abhors Trump, this is hardly surprising: this is how the left operates internationally, as well as in this country – if you stray from the party line it doesn’t take long before the knives come out, aimed directly at one’s back.
In any case, Correa’s betrayal seems to have been short-circuited by the ever-resourceful Assange, who is still releasing incriminating emails. This is someone with a Plan!
Coincident with all this is the culmination of the long “legal” process initiated by the Swedish government, which is falsely accusing Assange of “rape.” He was supposed to have met with Swedish prosecutors on Monday, but has put off the meeting until November 14 – after the US elections.
Given Sweden’s bizarre laws on the subject, and the provenance of his accusers, the smear campaign aimed at Assange has zero credibility. No one believes these charges (and remember, he has never been formally charged) aren’t motivated by Washington’s stated desire to get him extradited to the US on “espionage” charges – and there isn’t anyone who thinks that the British government (which has spent millions making sure he stays holed up in Ecuador’s embassy) wouldn’t do so given half a chance.
Is it a coincidence that the way the Establishment tries to destroy those who oppose it is by hurling sex charges at them? They did the same thing to Dan Ellsberg: it’s the oldest trick in the book.
Equally ridiculous are the accusations that Assange is a “Russian agent.” To begin with, despite the US government’s propaganda, there isn’t a lick of real evidence that the Russians hacked the DNC emails, or any of the other emails published by WikiLeaks It could just as easily have been an insider. The fact of the matter is that, although they try to project the illusion of their own omniscience , they just don’t know.
It took 3 million soldiers, 3,000 tanks, 7,000 artillery pieces, and 2,500 aircraft…
“Operation Barbarossa” was the codename for Nazi Germany’s invasion of the Soviet Union in 1941.
It was the largest military operation in human history.
The Nazis had already conquered most of Europe. Hitler had grown overconfident from his recent military victories. Now he was hunting for big game… Stalin’s USSR.
Throughout history, many European invaders, including Napoleon, suffered monumental defeats when they took on Russia. Despite this, Hitler thought he could succeed where they had failed.
The idea was to inflict a total defeat on the Soviets in a matter of months before the notoriously brutal Russian winter began.
At first, it looked like the Germans might succeed. The Soviets were taken by surprise and were disorganized.
But those initial victories wouldn’t be enough. Thanks to stubborn resistance and a seemingly inexhaustible supply of Soviet troops, Operation Barbarossa stalled.
The Germans didn’t make it to Moscow before winter. The ruthless cold weather would prove to be a far more effective weapon than anything in the Soviet arsenal. Hitler’s hopes of quickly taking out the USSR perished in the brutal cold. It ultimately turned the tide of the war against Germany.
But the Soviet victory cost millions of lives. By the end of the war, the Soviets had lost over 20 million people. Some estimate they lost many millions more. By comparison, the U.S. lost around 400,000 people.
So, it shouldn’t be surprising that the Russians get a little prickly when a foreign military starts marching toward their borders.
And recently… for the first time since Operation Barbarossa, German tanks are once again advancing on Russia’s border.
You probably haven’t heard this extraordinary piece of news. That’s because the mass media has basically ignored and obscured it. They’ve been busy covering far more important things… like transgender issues and Kim Kardashian’s latest stunt.
That’s why I want to tell you about Operation Anaconda 2016.
It’s the largest war game in Eastern Europe since the end of the Cold War. It’s essentially a rehearsal to secure a quick NATO victory in the event of war with Russia.
It was launched from Warsaw, Poland, recently and involves 31,000 NATO troops.
Operation Anaconda 2016 is one of the most important stories you’re not hearing about. It shows how perilously close the world is to another global war.
I found out about Operation Anaconda 2016 while in Warsaw with Doug Casey earlier this year.
(Incidentally, Poland is one of the cheapest, enjoyable countries I’ve ever been to. A 30-minute taxi ride from the middle of Warsaw to the airport is only $5. You’ll be hard-pressed to find an entrée in one of the nicest restaurants for over $15.
Poland does not use the European currency, the euro. It has its own currency, the zloty. And the zloty’s weakness is a big reason Poland is so inexpensive today. By the way, “zloty” means “gold” in Polish. But the currency has no tie to gold. It’s just a paper currency, like the dollar and euro are.)
Operation Anaconda 2016 is controversial even within NATO. German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier recently said:
Whoever believes that a symbolic tank parade on the alliance’s eastern border will bring security is mistaken. We are well advised to not create pretexts to renew an old confrontation.
Although Steinmeier said Operation Anaconda 2016 is symbolic, he failed to mention exactly what it symbolizes.
First, an anaconda is a giant snake. It kills its prey by squeezing it. From the Russian perspective, they’re the ones who feel squeezed. This is precisely what the U.S. has been doing by fomenting so-called colored revolutions in Ukraine and Georgia (both on Russia’s periphery) and trying to absorb them into NATO.
Second, this unprecedented “tank parade” on Russia’s borders symbolizes nothing less than World War 3.
(Doug Casey: It’s provocative, and actually quite insane. The Western media paints the Russians as the aggressors, which—let me shock you by saying this—is the opposite of the truth. Russia is an economic minnow, producing nothing but oil and gas, and mostly unprofitably, at current prices. Its population is in permanent decline, and it’s actually a disintegrating empire with a dozen secession movements. Its only serious industrial sector is manufacturing weapons, but even the most advanced Sukhois and MiGs (like the F-22 and F-35) are artifacts of a bygone era. The Russians aren’t in a position to threaten anyone—entirely apart from the fact that conquering neighboring countries no longer makes sense. In today’s world, you’re no longer acquiring an asset to be looted, but taking on a liability.
As for NATO, it’s outlived its usefulness by over 25 years. The huge military bureaucracy is just a hammer in search of a nail. It should be abolished before it gets everyone in a lot of trouble.)
Russian President Vladimir Putin has reacted to Operation Anaconda 2016 with alarm. At a recent press conference, he warned Western mainstream media journalists that the world is sleepwalking into World War 3, saying:
We know year by year what’s going to happen, and they know that we know. It’s only you that they tell tall tales to, and you buy it, and spread it to the citizens of your countries. Your people in turn do not feel a sense of the impending danger—this is what worries me.
How do you not understand that the world is being pulled in an irreversible direction? While they pretend that nothing is going on. I don’t know how to get through to you anymore.
U.S. politicians like to use Putin as a piñata to show how tough they are. Hillary Clinton has declared Putin to be the new Hitler. This is the kind of thinking that fueled Operation Anaconda 2016.
Now, we’re not referees charged with deciding which political players are good guys and which are bad guys.
However, the portrait of Putin as a Hitler or a crazy man leading his country toward disaster—the picture you get from the mainstream media and from many politicians—is suitable only for propaganda posters.
I don’t give two you-know-whats about what happens in Eastern Europe, except to the extent it might spark World War 3 and cause us to get vaporized in a nuclear exchange.
Albert Einstein once said, “I know not with what weapons World War 3 will be fought, but World War 4 will be fought with sticks and stones.”
Reprinted with permission from Doug Casey’s International Man.