HomeArticleOn The Idiotic Partisan Debate Over Regime Change In Iran Or Syria

On The Idiotic Partisan Debate Over Regime Change In Iran Or Syria

I love my job. Really, I do. But writing about US military agendas for a living often brings one into contact with such staggering stupidity that all you can do is pause and wonder how our species survived past the invention of the pointy stick.

By far the dumbest thing in all of US politics is the fact that Democrats tend to support regime change in Syria, while Republicans tend to support it more in Iran. I am not talking about the elected officials in those parties; I’m talking about the ordinary rank-and-file Joes and Janets who stand absolutely nothing to gain from toppling either Damascus or Tehran, but who have been brainwashed by lifelong media consumption into supporting one or the other anyway.

Whenever I write against the US government’s longstanding agenda to replace the leadership of Tehran with a compliant puppet regime, I know with absolute certainty that I’m going to spend the rest of my time online arguing with Trump supporters and lifelong Republicans. Whenever I write against the US government’s longstanding agenda to do the same in Syria, I know with absolute certainty that I’m going to be arguing predominantly with so-called centrist liberals.

At no time has this ever failed to occur.

I’ve spent the last few days arguing with Trump supporters who are telling me I’m crazy for not celebrating the death of an Iranian general they had no idea existed one week ago, and many of these pro bono State Department propagandists began following my work because they liked what I’ve been saying about Syria.

Conversely, all the fauxgressives and liberal interventionists who spent all last month telling me I’m a monster for writing about leaked OPCW documents showing we were lied to about an alleged 2018 chemical weapons incident have been staying out of my social media notifications completely these past four days.

It is truly bizarre. And it is truly, deeply, profoundly stupid.

It is truly, deeply and profoundly stupid because the agenda to topple Iran’s government and the agenda to topple Syria’s government are not two separate agendas. They are the same. Supporting one while opposing the other is like wanting to shoot someone in the head but being morally opposed to shooting them in the heart.

Syria and Iran are allies. Eliminating one government necessarily hurts the other. Iran has been helping Syria to win the war against foreign-backed extremist proxy fighters who nearly succeeded in toppling Damascus before its allies stepped in, and should Syria succeed in rebuilding itself (something the Trump administration is actively preventing it from doing) we can be sure it would return the favor when called upon.

The US government’s agenda to “take out” all noncompliant governments in the Middle East is completely removed from any consideration for American party politics. It’s one unified agenda, and the more the imperial blob succeeds in weakening any of the remaining unabsorbed nations, the easier it gets to absorb the others.

Supporting regime change in Iran but not Syria, or vice-versa, is for this reason an inherently absurd position to take. If you opposed Obama’s attempt to topple Damascus via Timber Sycamore-armed proxies, it’s absurd for you to support any maneuvers which could lead to the elimination of Syria’s key ally in that fight. If you oppose Trump’s current warmongering toward Iran, it’s absurd for you to support the elimination of one of Iran’s remaining friends in the region.

If Iran falls you may be sure that Syria will fall next, and vice versa. It’s the same box being ticked; you’re just arguing over whether it should be a left-handed or right-handed check mark.

But such is the strength of propaganda. The perception managers of the US war machine have successfully manipulated the voting public into a debate not about whether regime change interventionism should happen, but which regime change intervention should happen first.

In a sense it’s quite brilliant; we may be quite sure that government agency departments responsible for domestic perception management on US foreign policy have discussed this precise dynamic at length. But in another sense it’s quite mundane: the recent Republican presidents have pursued regime change in Iran, while Obama pursued it in Syria, so Republicans support Republican interventions while Democrats support Democratic ones.

This has nothing to do with any substantial difference in these agendas (again, it’s actually one agenda) and everything to do with what each faction can be more easily propagandized toward. Liberal hearts are easier to grab with horror stories about a monster who gasses babies for no reason and less concerned about refugee crises and the persecution of Syrian Christians, while Republicans are much easier to manipulate into despising a theocracy run by Muslims.

And of course there’s overlap; people who prioritize mass murder above all else like John Bolton and Lindsey Graham will cheer enthusiastically for as much military interventionism as they can get in either country (or any country, really). But by and large, especially among the rank-and-file, people tend to support the interventions their respective presidents propagandized them into supporting. Propaganda is pretty much the only thing the presidential “bully pulpit” is used for.

Because Iraq has poisoned the idea, each mainstream faction may deny actually wanting the US to oust the government of Iran or Syria. Trump supporters who still stand by the anti-interventionist platform he falsely campaigned on may say “I don’t want war with Iran, I just want Iranians to get their freedom and I think it’s awesome they killed Solamumi or however you spell it.” Liberals might say “I don’t want interventionism! I just support the Freedom Fighters™️ in Idlib and want Assad to stop murdering civilians for fun and sexual gratification.” But circulating propaganda narratives about governments targeted for regime change is supporting regime change. You’re participating in it as surely as if you’d deployed the Tomahawk missiles yourself.

Yesterday someone told me that everyone at Qassem Soleimani’s incredibly massive funeral procession was attending because they were forced to. When I asked him if he was claiming that every single one of those millions of people were publicly mourning because they’d been literally forced at gunpoint, he told me no: many were forced in the sense that state propaganda was all they’d ever known, so they were psychologically coerced into grieving Soleimani.

“I don’t accept that your ‘state propaganda their whole lives’ model is any more coercive or fascistic than the kind that causes Americans to turn up to pro- and anti-Trump rallies,” I said. “Americans are no less propagandized than Iranians. If anything it’s worse, since Americans don’t know they’re being propagandized.”

“You’ve got it backwards,” he said. “Iranians don’t know they’re being propagandized because they only have one source of information. The U.S. knows it because we have sides screaming it to other sides all the time and the freedom of information and thought to come to our own conclusions.”

“Nonsense,” I replied. “Nearly all Americans are propagandized to the gills. They’re probably the most aggressively propagandized population on earth, just because so much depends on their swallowing propaganda. It’s just a more scientific sort.”

“And yet here we are, talking about it freely without worrying about swallowing a bullet,” he said.

“Here I am arguing with a man who just so happens to be striving very, very hard to convince me to swallow the exact same narrative that Mike Pompeo is trying to convince me to swallow,” I replied.

The greatest asset of the propagandists is the belief that we haven’t been propagandized.

_____________________

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Latest comments

  • “Iranians don’t know they’re being propagandized because they only have one source of information.”

    I was in China recently and a Chinese friend there described TV news as being ‘Ten minutes saying how good everything is here, and ten minutes saying how bad everything is everywhere else.”

  • Caitlin, you might enjoy reading Sheila Samples if you haven’t already. This article she wrote in 2006 describes the powers in the Middle East much as they are today: https://www.countercurrents.org/leb-samples150806.htm

  • The story behind Mr. Soleimanis assassination seems to go much deeper than what has thus far been reported, involving Saudi Arabia and China as well the United States dollars role as the global reserve currency. Please read this very revealing article here:
    https://www.strategic-culture.org/news/2020/01/08/the-deeper-story-behind-the-assassination-of-soleimani/

  • I’ve said it before, but it applies again.
    If you want to understand, or even anticipate, America government policy, watch American gangster movies.
    IIRC, the assassination of Soliemani was enacted in the first Godfather movie. The bit when Pacino invites the crooked cop to a meeting in a restaurant for talks, and then murders him.
    This is the same no matter which Crime Family is currently in charge, Republican or Democrat. They have slight differences in stylistic matters and in tone of rhetoric, but the fact that few of the powerful Democrats are talking about the direct immorality of this murder is very revealing. They frame their argument only as a disagreement on tactics. Like Obama did with the Dubya/Cheney Terror Wars. The Democrats are only saying they can be a ‘better’ Crime Boss than Trump.
    Understanding that simple relationship, and looking at the propaganda from that point of view, is very revealing.
    $$$$$
    America, the Gangster Empire.

  • Propaganda?
    A plane crashed at Tehran international airport last night.
    It was yet another Boeing 737. Not the now grounded -MAX model, but the -800 model that came before. But still, data on the 737-Max crashes has been showing all sorts of safety flaws beyond the idiotic autopilot system that takes control away from the pilot and forces the plane into the ground.
    Last nite, before I went to bed, this was due to ‘mechanical failure’.
    Tonight, I wake up and suddenly there are stories about how the plane was shot down.
    I started to read on of the stories, then I saw that the “expert” talking to the capitalist media was the “former head of Ben Gurian Airport”.
    Yep, a totally unbiased source.
    And, just having once run an airport does not make a person knowledgeable in aeronautical engineering. Not even close. It might be, if they have other qualifications beyond being the administrative head of an airport, but I wouldn’t get on a plane if the only qualification the designer had was that he had previously run an airport.
    But, in a propaganda story, that’s enough to quickly put the person in front of the audience and pretend that they are now an “expert”.
    The interesting part, is that in this world of, by and for mega corporations, it might be that Boeing decided they couldn’t afford yet another plane crash in yet another 737. So, in defense of their share price, we will now all be told that “this one was different”.

  • Caitlin, one of your special talents is discovering the same ol’ thing again everyday: the neoliberals (most of the damns) = the neocons (most of the repugs) in the sense that they are two sides of a coin, that they share one substance, one perspective based on one ideology ( philosophy as science of social-historical thoughts). but you still manage to make me chuckle with your witty pharasings… so thank you.

    • sorry another cockup. that is, ideology, as opposed to philosophy as scientific or logical foundation of social/historical/political thoughts.

  • So much of what you write is incisive and revelatory. Yet I think the robber barons still have the wool pulled over peoples’ eyes when it comes to climate change. The ‘scare’ of the 70’s was global cooling. Can you imagine anything more desirable for monopolists than to do a land grab of resource wealth by monetizing ‘fossil fuels’ so that corporations can wrest control from landowners, natives, farmers, etc ? For nations which do not have energy resources to invest in useless part-time erratic generation ? Grid power to supply demand cannot wait on maybe generation. It will fail. Industry will flee. Societies will lose water treatment, water supply, hosp[ital, schools and more. Infrastructure like cold storage will not be available. All because people believe Greta and do not realize future weather is not measured. Is cannot be ‘scientific truth’ because it does not exist. What it can do is spark energy tax to fund the UN – a government monster whose belly can never be filled.

  • Trump here is obviously channeling F. D. Roosevelt, provoking his target in order to get it/them to commit some act (or be blamed for a false-flag attack) sufficient to get enough support among Americans to re-elect him in November.
    Another president, Lyndon Johnson, simply faked the Tonkin Gulf attack out of whole cloth, and got his war (and the heave-ho, as I hope Trump gets). Woodrow Wilson lied us into war after being re-elected on promises to keep us out. Then there was Lincoln, Washington and others – all got us into wars most of us didn’t want to fight, or have fought for us.
    It’s what presidents do. Good luck finding one that doesn’t. Jimmy Carter?

    • Hmmm, that one didn’t do much for LBJ’s re-election chances in ’68.
      “Hey, Hey, L-B-J, how many kids did you kill today?”

  • A song to wrap the world in.
    Canadian indigenous Tom Jackson. I’m Not Saying, I’m Just Saying (We Could Put An End To War)

    youtube.com/watch?v=OjlN-0DL-Ac

  • I agree wholeheartedly with George S. McGovern, a former Senator and presidential candidate who served in the Vietnam War, about one thing: I am sick of old men dreaming up wars for young men to die in.
    It is time to bring our troops home.
    Bring them home from Somalia, Afghanistan, Iraq and Syria. Bring them home from Germany, South Korea and Japan. Bring them home from Saudi Arabia, Jordan and Oman. Bring them home from Niger, Chad and Mali. Bring them home from Turkey, the Philippines, and northern Australia Please read this fine article here:
    https://medium.com/@johnw_whitehead/come-home-america-stop-policing-the-globe-and-put-an-end-to-wars-without-end-8ade351413b4

    • George McGovern served in World War II. You must be too young.

      • I did not write the article. John Whitehead wrote the article.

    • The US has 1000+ bases and installations around the world, not to police it, but to steal resources of weak nations and to intimidate other nations, e.g. China, Russia.

      • The problem is not that we don’t want a world police force. The people of the world just don’t want a world police force that is corrupt and which enforces pain upon people and never justice.
        Someday, when we the people overthrow capitalism, an event probably driven by the reaction of the young to climate change, then we the people will need a world police force. We just need to make certain that it is capable and relatively honest and serves the mission of protecting the people from all sorts of international criminals that want to prey on the people. Someday, the creation of a true world police force will be regarded as one of the great achievements in history and people will look back on times before that the way we consider the Wild West.

    • What we need is younger, energetic and eloquent followers of inter-agency consensus. Support Butiegieg!

      Perhaps organizing death squads made of seniors who volunteer to work past their retirement would fix Sen. McGovern’s problem.

  • Thanks for your thoughts on this; you’ve changed my mind about the US supporting regime change in Syria. The US hasn’t rebuilt Iraq, which I think it ought to do; I mean one ought to clean up one’s playground before moving onto the next game.
    I want cultural diversity to be maintained; it’s a stabilizing influence.
    I was rooting for their civil war, thought some sort of clandestine support for the rebels might have apt, but I saw it become futile once Russia stepped in. Proxy wars: didn’t work for US in Vietnam. Who’s going to step in and help Iran though? I really don’t want to see a single minaret disfigured there, as US bombs did to so many of the lovely and historic structures of Iraq.
    Oh, if I could just be a just God for a day, I might just dry up all of the oil wells.
    “If I had a rocket launcher ……”
    Thanx again for the clarity

    • Interesting, because there was obviously a very powerful narrative there that could have been chosen. America does rebuild Iraq. American corporations and others connected to DC make lots of money doing so. But, they do the job right and do it well. They rebuild Iraq into a showpiece of a society, starting with the oil fields to pay for it. The narrative behind this runs on about how they rebuild western Europe after they defeated Hitler, now they are rebuilding Iraq. That’s such a powerful narrative that they could get people in other countries literally begging to be invaded.
      There are always different narratives that could be chosen. The ones they pick, the ones we know by. In this case, they went for short term gain and profit and declined a narrative that meant spending money now (2003-4) but which could yield the sort of powerful future that might even have been able to allow the Empire to withstand the rise of a powerful China.
      Most empires die because of short term greed in the emperors and the court.
      ———
      And now, with a smile of anticipation on my face, I’m heading off to go listen to some Bruce Cockburn. I’ve got that song in my head, again, and there is only one cure. 🙂

      • A quick link for others …. 🙂
        I forget how good this song is. I need to listen to it more often. 🙂
        “Bruce Cockburn – If I had a Rocket Launcher – Austin City Limits”

  • As the Middle East lurches to deeper chaos, thanks to Washington,D.C.s drone-strike assassination in Iraq of Iranian and Iraqi citizens, and the world braces for reprisals, the light has shifted from the countless millions of other people deserving attention and compassion. Human rights continue to be abused in many regions in spite of efforts by the United Nations and private organisations to persuade various governments that their conduct is shameful. Please read this dreadful article here:
    https://www.strategic-culture.org/news/2020/01/07/paradise-islands-and-britains-human-rights-hypocrisy/

  • Caitlin, did you try the argument on that guy who thinks he is not propagandized that no one thinks advertising works on them either, but billions spent on advertising shows it works on most of us? I’m trying really hard to study your arguments, in case I ever get an opportunity to have a rational discussion.

  • “At the top of the next hour, we will have a wide-ranging discussion of when and where to start the bombing.”

    That is about the extent of the MSM coverage in the U.S. Whether there should even be any bombing is outside of the window of acceptable discussion.

  • Well said.

  • pointed sticks! i loved this article: you might be the best writer on foreign affairs extant.
    your grasp and humble everyday approach to vocabulary and content is accessible and conducive to change.
    i wonder if any women are reading your stuff: a revolution could emante inthe kitchens of the world perhaps easier than anywhere.
    lotsa pointy sticks in there as well.
    keep on keepin on.
    when my manuscript is done you’ll get a shipload.

    • Jimmy Gulag. Of course lots of women are reading Caitlins ‘stuff’ i am. I’m hoping lots of men are too. And are thinking very seriously about these issues that affect us all.

      • I’m a woman, and I read Johnstone (and numerous other political/current event sites) every single day.

        Depending on one’s perspective, being so immersed is either a really good thing or a really bad thing (my friends and loved ones sometimes take the latter view when I get too impassioned). Alas, my desire to be informed conflicts with my need to stay sane! 😉

  • **CJ** you have drawn attention to a critical
    and mysterious paradox: the Dem liberals support
    regime change in Syria and oppose it in Iran,
    while the Repubs are just the reverse.
    THE SMOKING GUN:
    Amy Goodman on “Democracy Now!” had countless
    interviews to support the “humanitarian” war
    against the “brutal dictator” Bashar al-Assad.
    Now Amy is bringing on guests who make the
    case against war with Iran.
    How do the rulers of empire pull this off-?
    `
    And Tucker Carlson on Fox News is the only
    mainstream pundit who opposes all the wars
    of foreign intervention.
    How does he get a pass from the rulers-?

    • Good questions elko john. I’ve wondered why Carlson gets a pass on corporate media too.

      • One word: tokenism. No doubt he gets a pass in order to give the appearance of an unbiased press. Racial tokenism happens less in US mass media than it used to, but still happens. This is just political tokenism. Both types have the same purpose: provide someone the PTB can point to and say, “See, we represent everyone,” without actually accomplishing anything substantial.

  • “None are so hopelessly enslaved than those who falsely believe they are free.”

  • The conventional war with Iran has already started. I think it’s a good idea to understand why before it inevitably turns into a world-wide nuclear exchange.
     
    There are four historic events that go a long way to explain the single “ball of wax” that is the US political system, the printed-out-of-thin-air USD and both’s vital need for perpetual war.
     
    First, in 1971 Nixon decided that nations that had lent money to the US by buying US “treasury” bonds could no longer redeem those bonds for physical gold. He said that he was “temporarily” stopping this convertibility because of “currency speculators”, but the real reason he did that was, in short, because the US literally did not (and still does not) have enough physical gold to ship to those nations who wanted to return their US bonds for gold rather than more paper. Nixon was literally forced to do what he did or he would have to stop making war on the world. He chose the former and all his successors have made the exact same choice.
     
    Second, because the US economy would, as George Kennan said just a few years before the end of the USSR, have experienced too much “shock” without perpetual war and the economically-necessary military-industrial-complex to fight it, something other than gold had to be found to “back up” printed-out-of-thin-air USDs. A few increasingly desperate years later one was — the petro-dollar. It is vitally important that everyone understand its secret origin, because without such understanding a person cannot make sense of the current United States of America. (Also take careful note of the people in the article’s photos.)
    h……..ttps://www.bloomberg.com/news/features/2016-05-30/the-untold-story-behind-saudi-arabia-s-41-year-u-s-debt-secret
     
    This new, completely experimental petro-dollar system and the ensuing “Carter Doctrine”
    h………….ttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carter_Doctrine
    explain most of the US’s military behavior in Latin and South America, as well as, more recently, in Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Syria, Yemen and Somalia. In short, by adopting the petro-dollar, the US had fully committed itself to use its military forces to control not only the middle east, but the entire world in order to maintain US dollar hegemony. From the get-go, that was a fatal mistake.
     
    Third, for just one example of the petrodollar’s irresistible political power, on October 4, 2017, for the first time ever, a Saudi King flew to Moscow and met with the head of the Russian Federation, who at that time just happened to be Vladimir Putin.
    h……………ttps://www.theguardian.com/world/2017/oct/05/saudi-russia-visit-putin-oil-middle-east
    The King’s trip sent an earth-shaking, absolutely clear message to the US Elite, as well as to the US President, who at that time just happened to be Donald Trump. Nine days after that unprecedented visit, on October 13, Trump announced that Iran was violating the JCPOA– the “nuclear deal” with Iran.
    h,,,,,,,,,,ttp://www.cnn.com/2017/10/13/politics/iran-deal-decertify/index.html
    even though Iran was NOT, and is still not, violating the terms of that painstakingly negotiated and detailed agreement.
     
    The King’s visit to Russia and Trump’s announcement only a few days later were no mere coincidence. The King of the petro-dollar was telling the commander-in-chief of the US military forces that unless the US president fulfilled his nation’s commitment to the petro-dollar agreement, the USD would not remain the de facto world reserve currency for long. The US war-petro-dollar-based economy would collapse.
     
    Trump obeyed his orders and in May 2018, pulled the US out of the deal. The rest of the nations that signed onto the deal have been unwilling or unable to fulfill their own obligations to it.
     
    The US’s petro-dollar quagmire is completely responsible for the US’s reaction to MbS’s murder of Khashoggi. Here’s my headline for this part of my “story”:
     
    Donald Trump Admits Bush’s War On Terror Is Actually President Lyndon Johnson’s War On Poverty —“I don’t want to lose an order like that.”
     
    h……….ttps://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/trump-promises-severe-punishment-behind-khashoggis-disappearance-1152147
     
    From the above link (my emphasis in bold):
     
    “When considering punishments if Saudi Arabia were found culpable, Trump was hesitant to suggest sanctions. ‘It depends on the sanctions,’ he said. ‘Let’s give an example: We are ordering military equipment. Everybody in the world wanted it: Russia wanted it, China wanted it, we wanted it, we got it, and we got all of it, we got every bit of it.’
     
    ‘So would you cut that off, or take…’ Stahl asked.
     
    ‘Well, I tell you what I don’t want to do: Boeing, Lockheed, Raytheon, all these companies, I don’t want to hurt jobs, I don’t want to lose an order like that. And you know, there are other ways of punishing, to use a word that’s a pretty harsh word, but it’s true,’ Trump replied.”
     
    What Trump failed to mention is that the US economy literally can not afford to “lose an order like that”. Again, George Kennan explained exactly why just a few short years before the end of the Soviet Union. (What he said is even more true today.)
     
    “Were the Soviet Union to sink tomorrow under the waters of the ocean, the American military-industrial establishment would have to go on, substantially unchanged, until some other adversary could be invented. Anything else would be an unacceptable shock to the American economy.”
     
    Fourth, the “Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008” (EESA) — the act that prevented the Elite from suffering losses on their mal-investments and created the TBTF banks:
    h……….ttps://www.congress.gov/110/plaws/publ343/PLAW-110publ343.pdf
    Although there are many important, unprecedented actions allowed/required by that act, for the present purpose, the following Section 112 is most important:
     
    “SEC. 112. COORDINATION WITH FOREIGN AUTHORITIES AND CENTRAL BANKS.
     
    The Secretary shall coordinate, as appropriate, with foreign financial authorities and central banks to work toward the establishment of similar programs by such authorities and central banks. To the extent that such foreign financial authorities or banks hold troubled assets as a result of extending financing to financial institutions that have failed or defaulted on such financing, such troubled assets qualify for purchase under section 101.”
     
    Just exactly how much of this unprecedented, completely-experimental coordination between foreign “financial authorities” (the “Group of 30”, maybe? h……….ttp://group30.org/members ) and central banks is taking place this very day and just exactly what is their real goal? We can take a damned good guess by reading what VIP George Kennan wrote a few decades ago:
     
    “…..we have about 50% of the world’s wealth but only 6.3% of its population. This disparity is particularly great as between ourselves and the peoples of Asia. In this situation, we cannot fail to be the object of envy and resentment. Our real task in the coming period is to devise a pattern of relationships which will permit us to maintain this position of disparity without positive detriment to our national security. ……..We need not deceive ourselves that we can afford today the luxury of altruism and world-benefaction.
    ………
    We should cease to talk about vague and — for the Far East — unreal objectives such as human rights, the raising of the living standards, and democratization. The day is not far off when we are going to have to deal in straight power concepts. The less we are then hampered by idealistic slogans, the better.
    We should recognize that our influence in the Far Eastern area in the coming period is going to be primarily military and economic. ……… It is my own guess, on the basis of such study as we have given the problem so far, that Japan and the Philippines will be found to be the corner-stones of such a Pacific security system and if we can contrive to retain effective control over these areas there can be no serious threat to our security from the East within our time. Only when we have assured this first objective, can we allow ourselves the luxury of going farther afield in our thinking and our planning.”

     
    The very serious problem for the transnational US Elite is that USD hegemony is now, for the first time since the end of WWII, being seriously challenged by other increasingly powerful nations’ economies and their currencies and their weapons. Things are no longer going completely the Superpower US’s way. China’s economy is perhaps even now larger than that of the US.
     
    What we commoners are now hearing 24/7, the only thing we’re allowed to hear, is the Elite’s investments incessantly beating the drums of war for profit. Their voice was Donald Trump addressing the United Nations. Their voice was Donald Trump saying “I don’t want to lose that order” for $110 billion of weapons systems. Their voices ordered Donald Trump to kill Qasem Soleimani.
     
    Speaking of the voices of the Elite, don’t forget the relatively recent NYT article by Bernanke, Paulson and Geithner in which they predict yet another financial crisis that, when it inevitably happens, will be declared by the same three to have been completely unexpected.
    h………ttps://www.nytimes.com/2018/09/07/opinion/sunday/bernanke-lehman-anniversary-oped.html
     
    “But the powers of the regulators alone proved inadequate. Congressional action made it possible for two presidents, one Republican and one Democratic, working with regulators, to prevent the collapse of the financial system and avoid another Great Depression.”
     
    We must ask: just exactly what is “the financial system” whose “collapse” was prevented in only few hours of discussion by the above three Robber Barons? It is a system in which a microscopic percentage of the population owns the vast majority of wealth and large-scale capital equipment for their own astronomical profit. It is an ancient, increasingly explosive economic system that is still operating today. The population/climate catastrophes, the perpetual war catastrophes and the incessant, inevitable, predictable financial catastrophes are all part of an all-encompassing “ball-of-wax” that has that ultimately-fatal, completely man-made agreement as its core.
     
    To sum up, we are living in the competition of all tribal competitions and the outcome of this “contest” will determine the role of the US economy in the world, as well as the ultimate fate of the Fed’s hundreds of trillions, perhaps quadrillions of printed-out-of-thin-air USD.
     
    The US’s imposition of all these tariffs and “sanctions” and wars are absolute proof of the transnational US Elite’s flailing desperation to do only one thing –maintain USD hegemony in order to prevent Kennan’s “unacceptable shock to the American economy”. These measures will ultimately fail and, therefore the only really important question that remains is whether the increasingly-desperate US Elite will “go gentle into that good night” and develop a peace-based economy amidst near-certain economic/political/social chaos, or will this insane Elite “false-flag” the rest of the world into a no-win nuclear shootout at the OK Corral. The US pulling out of the INF treaty; US Secretary of the Interior’s recent threat to perhaps use the US navy to blockade Russian exports; the US ambassador to NATO’s recent threat to “take out” Russian missiles on Russian soil, the US moving B-52 bombers to Dieo Garcia and, finally, the murder of Qasem Soleimani indicate that the shoot-out is far more than being seriously considered. It may have already started. At least now you will be able to tell your children why.

    • well stated

  • So similar to the “good cop/bad cop” game.

  • Here’s the great “difference” between Democrats and Republicans in US foreign policy:

    The Donkey wing of the American Empire vs. the Elephant wing of the American Empire.

    Criminal American wars committed by a Democratic Party president vs. Criminal Americans wars committed by a Republican Party president.

    Election 2020: Choose and Lose!

  • Title this excellent piece “The Triumph of the Bernays-Goebbels Axis.”

  • And propaganda works best with decadent civilization. And no doubt it is the case as it was the case in the days of Noah.

    The ruling elites and the youth are especially affected by the decadence. One proof is that you have to listen to people over 60 years old to listen to good music now. So you have to get out again your old CDs to listen to Bruce Springsteen, John Mellencamp, Lionel Ritchie and other singers around that age to have good music.

    But according to prophecy, the return of Jesus is very near and I pray the Rosary to hasten His return because I have seen enough bullshit.

  • Americans are as brainwashed as anyone. You can see agendas change before your eyes on sitcoms, advertisements or news. We are losing our morals and moral compass. America is capable of anything so beware. Saying you hold the moral ground makes you justified with any action. Gotta go have my brain washed for the day. Get any clear thoughts scrubbed away.

  • “”Punitive sanctions, I believe, are not the best course of action,” Mr. Reagan said. ”They hurt the very people they are intended to help.”

    Mr. Reagan’s supporters echoed this argument on the floor today, and predicted that by undermining the Pretoria Government, Congress would hasten the triumph of Communist-inspired forces in South Africa.

    ”The thrust of this legislation,” said Senator Jesse Helms, a North Carolina Republican, ”is to bring about violent, revolutionary change, and after that, tyranny.””

    — NYTimes article, Oct 3, 1985, on the overriding of Reagan’s veto of a sanctions bill targeting the South African Apartheid government. I don’t link to the NYT, so its left to the reader to find the article if they want to risk infection.

    The argument back then was that sanctions by one country were ineffective. This bill only passed Congress when most of the world had already joined sanctions against the Apartheid Regime in SA. There is a fascinating quote from Cmte chair Sen. Richard Lugar, where he speaks as “a friend” to the Regime. That’s some of his lifetime’s work which let to a Germ Warfare research center being named after him in Georgia on Russia’s borders. They don’t just name a horror-weapon center after you for having a pretty face.

  • The fascinating thing is that it can change after an election.
    The current situation is because Obama + Hillary started the Syrian Terror War and the American Invasion of Syria, so these are holy and sacred texts to the Democrats. Obama also signed the agreement with Iran where Iran agreed to give up its mythical nuclear weapons program in exchange for a partial lifting of US sanctions, and Trump campaigned on opposing this. So, these are the holy and sacred texts to the Republicans.
    But, it can flip around after an election, and that switch can happen so fast that it can cause whiplash to those who try to follow the course of the lies. I saw this after the Clintons campaigned about how awful Bush-Daddy was to make deals with China after Tienanmen Square, then turned around and set up the massive exodus of American jobs to China. What was awful and abhorrent became absolutely fabulous in just a very short time. That of course tends to make actual, thinking, feeling people understand how fake and phony this all really is.

  • People do not have any excuse now if they believe those who want war with Iran (who are by the way the same people behind 9/11 in 2001).

    People agree to believe propaganda because it fits their goal of protecting their social status, money and assets. Because to protect that, you have to agree with the ruling elites who are sustaining and maintaining the actual structures and System.

    It was the case in the days of Noah just before the flood; so we are in the return of the days of Noah. The good news is that it also means the return of Jesus in very near and I pray the Rosary to hasten His return because I have seen enough bullshit.

  • Capitalism is Always at War

    “Capitalism is always at war. The violence, though, is often abstract: forcing us either to accept low-paying, exhausting jobs or starve; denying us adequate health care, education, and economic security; convincing us that human beings are basically isolated, autonomous units seeking self gratification.

    But when this doesn’t suffice to keep their profits growing, the violence becomes physical, the cannons roar, and the elite rally us to war to defend “our” country and destroy the fiendish enemy. Motivating us to kill and die for them requires a massive propaganda campaign — America is under attack! — which we confront whenever we turn on their media.

    Why do they do this? Are they monsters?

    No, they’re not. They’re just human beings serving an inhuman system. Capitalism is inherently predatory. It demands aggressive growth. It’s either dominate or go under.

    This drive for domination is the root cause of war, and until we eliminate it, we’re going to continue killing one another. Eliminating it requires a global struggle to bring down oligarchic capitalism and replace it with democratic socialism. Political democracy must be expanded and extended into the economic sphere. We, the people of the world, have to take control of the forces that shape our lives. This is the basis for building a society in which we can all fully develop as human beings. Once we achieve this, we’ll have a real chance at lasting peace.”

    https://dandelionsalad.wordpress.com/2018/04/27/capitalism-is-always-at-war-by-william-hathaway/?fbclid=IwAR3jB2Akp4Iv-P_H1Puzf1V41PqebXmC_U5JY1elgrVcNv-noi6I-fJ3OE0

  • When I read an article like yours, I’m reminded of very astute (and in this case, prescient) observation by Noam Chomsky from a 1986 interview with David Barsamian. In fact, I believe he describes exactly what you’re writing about here.

    I’ll paste it for people to read, specifically the paragraph starting with “The Vietnam War…” and the one below it…

    <<>>

    • Here’s the exchange I was referring to…

      Interviews of Noam Chomsky by David Barsamian
      Propaganda in the US vs in the USSR

      October 24, 1986

      David Barsamian: C.P. Otero, who has edited a collection of your essays entitled Radical Priorities, has written in its preface, “The totalitarian system of thought control is far less effective than the democratic one, since the official doctrine parroted by the intellectuals at the service of the state is readily identifiable as pure propaganda, and this helps free the mind.” In contrast, he writes, “the democratic system seeks to determine and limit the entire spectrum of thought by leaving the fundamental assumptions unexpressed. They are presupposed but not asserted.”

      Noam Chomsky: That’s quite accurate. I’ve also written about that many times. Just think about it. Take, say, a country which is at the opposite end of the spectrum from us domestically, the Soviet Union. That’s a country run by the bludgeon, essentially. It’s a command state: the state controls, everybody basically follows orders. It’s more complicated than that, but essentially that’s the way it works. There, it’s very easy to determine what propaganda is: what the state produces is propaganda. That’s the kind of thing that Orwell described in 1984. In a country like that, where there’s a kind of Ministry of Truth, propaganda is very easily identifiable. Everybody knows what it is, and you can choose to repeat it if you like, but basically it’s not really trying to control your thought very much; it’s giving you the party line. It’s saying, “Here’s the official doctrine; as long as you don’t disobey you won’t get in trouble. What you think is not of great importance to anyone. If you get out of line we’ll do something to you because we have force.”

      Democratic societies can’t really work like that, because the state can’t control behavior by force. It can to some extent, but it’s much more limited in its capacity to control by force. Therefore, it has to control what you think. And again, democratic theorists have understood this for 50 or 60 years and have been very articulate about it. If the voice of the people is heard, you’d better control what that voice says, meaning you have to control what they think. The method Otero mentions there is one of the major methods. One of the ways you control what people think is by creating the illusion that there’s a debate going on, but making sure that that debate stays within very narrow margins. Namely, you have to make sure that both sides in the debate accept certain assumptions, and those assumptions turn out to be the propaganda system. As long as everyone accepts the propaganda system, then you can have a debate.

      The Vietnam War is a classic example. In the major media, the New York Times or CBS or whatever — in fact, all across the spectrum except at the very far-out periphery which reaches almost no one — in the major media which reach the overwhelming majority of the population, there was a lively debate. It was between people called “doves” and people called “hawks”. The people called hawks said, “If we keep at it we can win.” The people called doves said, “Even if we keep at it we probably can’t win, and besides, it would probably be too costly for us, and besides maybe we’re killing too many people,” something like that. Both sides, the doves and the hawks, agreed on something: we have a right to carry out aggression against South Vietnam. In fact, they didn’t even admit that it was taking place. They called it the “defense” of South Vietnam, using “defense” for “aggression” in the standard Orwellian manner. We were in fact attacking South Vietnam, just as much as the Russians are attacking Afghanistan. Like them, we first established a government that invited us in, and until we found one we had to overturn government after government. Finally we got one that invited us in, after we’d been there for years, attacking the countryside and the population. That’s aggression. Nobody thought it was wrong, or rather, anyone who thought that was wrong was not admitted to the discussion. If you’re a dove, you’re in favor of aggression, if you’re a hawk you’re in favor of aggression. The debate between the hawks and the doves, then, is purely tactical: “Can we get away with it? Is it too bloody or too costly?” All basically irrelevant.

      The real point is that aggression is wrong. When the Russians invaded Czechoslovakia, they got away with it. They didn’t kill many people, but it was wrong because aggression is wrong. We all understand that. But we can’t allow that understanding to be expressed when it relates to the violent actions of our state, obviously. If this were a totalitarian state, the Ministry of Truth would simply have said, “It’s right for us to go into Vietnam, period. Don’t argue with it.” People would have known that’s the propaganda system talking and they could have thought what they wanted. They could have seen that we were attacking Vietnam just like we can see that the Russians are attacking Afghanistan.

      You couldn’t permit that understanding of reality in this country; it’s too dangerous. People are much more free, they can express themselves, they can do things. Therefore, it was necessary to try to control thought, to try to make it appear as if the only issue was a tactical one: can we get away with it? There’s no issue of right or wrong. That worked partially, but not entirely. Among the educated part of the population it worked almost totally.

      There are good studies of this that show, with only the most marginal statistical error, that among the more educated parts of the population the government propaganda system was accepted unquestioningly. On the other hand, after a long period of popular spontaneous opposition, dissent and organization, the general population got out of control. As recently as 1982, according to the latest polls I’ve seen, over 70 percent of the population still was saying that the war was, quoting the wording of the Gallup poll, “fundamentally wrong and immoral,” not “a mistake.” That is, the overwhelming majority of the population is neither hawks nor doves, but opposed to aggression. On the other hand, the educated part of the population, they’re in line. For them, it’s just the tactical question of hawk vs. dove.

      This is, incidentally, not untypical. Propaganda very often works better for the educated than it does for the uneducated. This is true on many issues. There are a lot of reasons for this, one being that the educated receive more of the propaganda because they read more. Another thing is that they are the agents of propaganda. After all, their job is that of commissars; they’re supposed to be the agents of the propaganda system so they believe it. It’s very hard to say something unless you believe it. Other reasons are that, by and large, they are just part of the privileged elite so they share their interests and perceptions, whereas the general population is more marginalized. It, by and large, doesn’t participate in the democratic system, which is overwhelmingly an elite game. People learn from their own lives to be skeptical, and in fact most of them are. There’s a lot of skepticism and dissent and so on.

      Here’s a case which is an interesting one because, while the technique of thought control worked very effectively, in fact to virtually 100 percent effectiveness among the educated part of the population, after many years of atrocities and massacres and hundreds of thousands of people killed and so on, it began to erode among the general population. There’s even a name for that: it’s called the “Vietnam Syndrome”, a grave disease: people understand too much. But it’s very striking, very illuminating to see how well it’s worked among the educated. If you pick up a book on American history and look at the Vietnam War, there is no such event as the American attack against South Vietnam. It’s as if in the Soviet Union, say, in the early part of the 21st century, nobody will have ever said there was a Russian invasion of Afghanistan. Everyone says it’s a Russian defense of Afghanistan. That’s not going to happen. In fact, people already talk about the Russian invasion of Afghanistan — maybe they defend it, maybe not — but they admit that it exists. But in the United States, where the indoctrination system is vastly more effective, the educated part of the population can’t even see that it exists. We cannot see that there was an American invasion of South Vietnam. It’s out of history, down Orwell’s memory hole.

      • Wow, Chomsky even had a theory about how more educated people are more stupid, or rather more vulnerable to propaganda. I guess you could summarize it as the system promotes bootlickers (in education as well as corporate and political culture).

        • Great point!

  • The US has not suffered the atrocity of war in their home land in the lifetime of any citizen, including several generations. Aside from those unfortunate enough to have participated in the foreign adventures of the Us military, they are removed from the actual insanity of war. It’s now a sporting event, and each teem has it’s cheering section. Video blood and guts is not nearly as real as first person 3D, enhanced by sound without volume control, and smell.

  • Imagine this scenario for just a second……Iran decides to take out via drone strike the Chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff, Army General Mark Milley, labeling him the head of US global terrorism and an imminent threat to national security.

  • “I’m talking about the ordinary rank-and-file Joes and Janets who stand absolutely nothing to gain from toppling either Damascus or Tehran, but who have been brainwashed by lifelong media consumption into supporting one or the other anyway.”

    Perhaps the rank-and-file Joes and Janets continue to do what they do because they get paid to do it and they need that pay to live. And as they work in the halls of power, those jobs may also ‘pay’ them in status – and ‘status’ in American ‘culture’ is critical. We climb the rungs so we can look down and lord over others. This is what we have been taught to do. We have been taught to idolize elites because we have been taught that if they have more power than us, they are better than us and we should aspire to be more like them. This mindset is what keeps the Joes and Janets of the United States battling each other while the elites look down and laugh from their thrones, which by the way, Joe and Janet built for them.

  • As Willy Boy Clinton said: “I…feel your pain” Caitlin, re: the ‘staggering stupidity’ in the U.S.– and i was born here…nearly 72 years ago, living among this mass nonsense that grows exponentially. It’s nigh impossible to communicate with such folk, so i mostly avoid them. What’s the point? Face to face is, if possible, even worse than debating on screenworld, so i’ve ceased most face to face confrontations. Once upon a sane time i could at least talk about silly things, like the weather, and be on my way. Now, of course, that might lead me into another crazed climate change denier cultist’s rant. Escape has become mostly futile. Still, i do my small part to bring this asylum down in ‘stealth mode’, then return to hide in the remaining cracks and crevices to retain a modicum of sanity. Thanks for your intrepid patience with ‘Ma fellow ‘murikans’.

  • “If you are like nearly everyone else in this world, you have accepted so many things without question that you’re not thinking at all.“ – Eli Goldratt

    In other words, if you believe the propaganda being spewed by the government and mainstream media, you are not thinking at all. You have granted the ‘glob’ the right to think for you.

  • Yeah, keep it coming. Remember that Jew who said, “They see, but they don’t see; they hear but they don’t hear”? And then they killed him. 2,000 some years later, still nothing has changed, no matter how many times you say it, it’s like talking to a bubble in the sea.

  • There’s only ONE political party–the perpetual war party.

  • This goes back to 2000 when George W planned to invade Iraq and Gore Iran. It has always been thus in the kabuki theater of US national politics. The only politics that make sense in the USA are local (and not always) and occasionally state level.

  • Being brainwashed by US propaganda to the point where people do not even realize they are being brainwashed can be understood as follows: it’s like the difference between living next to a coal-burning power plant or a nuclear power plant. With coal, you can smell it, taste it, choke on it. You can see the smoke coming out of the smoke stacks. You know it’s bad for your health. With nuclear, no smell, no taste, no smoke. But oh so deadly…..
    In the former USSR, almost no one believed anything the government was telling them. They knew it was just government propaganda. In the US, the bastion of American Exceptionalism, most people still believe they are watching the “news.”

  • The source of the memo Wesley Clark is talking about is revealed here (jump to around 7:50 for a recap). Conveniently, Barak was in the BBC studios (complicit) at the time of 911 ready to make this speech about ’rogue states’.

    A chief architect of 9-11, Ehud Barak, interviewed on BBC an hour after attacks

    • Too nauseated to watch whole interview.

  • Vanessa Beeley has been bringing us the truth about Syria in particular since the beginning. (Eva K Bartlett is another extraordinary woman of courage and integrity.)

    Vanessa brings us this clip

    General Qasem Soleimani saved Christian lives in Syria

  • Some years ago I emailed the US Navy website of Diego Garcia. The bomber etc. base the US built on the main island to bomb Afghanistan etc. I wrote to the website asking why the “history” of the islands on the website never mentioned the thousands of native people who were expelled to make way for this base. Some Navy guy wrote back and told me that because I had mentioned that I was a Canadian that I should be grateful for the US protecting me because Canada relied entirely on the US for protection. He also told me that there were NO native people on the islands. I wrote back with various documents re the struggle the native people were going through to return home. He was honest enough to reply that NO ONE on this massive Navy base had any knowledge that these islands had been occupied. Missing info is a powerful part of propaganda.

  • Well, I thought briefly that Trump had been misled and corralled into taking out Soleimani, and had realised what a dumb thing it was … and then I found out that the US has sent those Reaper Drones to South Korea. Now these things are for targeted assassinations, and that is a concern. My first thought was for the safety of KJU. My second thought was .. the US has now gone barking mad. But of course the reality is that the unipolar moment is over, the US economy (except for the Wall Street casino) is in deep doo doo, and as it goes down it is going to lash out at everyone and everything around it in the hope that a war results, and in this way it avoids the inevitable.
    Happily, European countries are not keen on this War with Iran thingy. NK is probably too far away for them to care about, but Iran can block the Straits of Hormuz, and that might make filling up their BMW a tad expensive. Russia and China aren’t all that keen either; they tend to prefer peace so they can trade their gas and manufactured products and continue becoming prosperous.
    The sane neighbours in the ME are definitely against it.
    So it’s just the US in its death throes.
    It can’t come soon enough.

  • We Americans are propagandized about everything, especially about how other nations we oppose are propagandizing their own people to death. But no, it’s especially us who are propagandized to death, and propagandized to believe we are not being propagandized. The vast majority of Americans die never realizing how badly they have been deceived and manipulated nearly every moment of their lives. In their ignorance, they believe in the system and support it as if it were real. But it’s fake, an illusion, a convincing façade, an elaborate con-game. Rare are those that can see through much of the con. And if you are asking “What con?”, I recommend reading more of Caitlin’s posts.

    • There seem to be more and more people that are ‘seeing through the con’. However, just knowing that you’re being conned isn’t enough. Without being able to remove oneself from the con, we only become frustrated, angry, then violent (fight) or despondent (give-up). What we are lacking is a simple vision for the future and a simple strategy we can all participate in to effectively shed ourselves of the con and build something new.
      This, I believe is what is lacking today and what we must have to create a good tomorrow.

      How do we do this? I’m sure we all have some ideas. Maybe we could stop debating the ‘who did what to whom in power circles’ and start gathering to build tomorrow.

      There are two ways to win a revolution – fight against tyranny with violent protest or stop participating in the system run by the tyrants. My guess is, both will be required in our times.

  • A hearty “Amen, Sister Caitlin!”

    https://www.brainpickings.org/2014/01/03/baloney-detection-kit-carl-sagan/

    for those who still want to use their brains for other than filler to prevent skull collapse.

  • The ‘Propagandised American or Brit or Israeli’ have all succumbed to the Graat Machine that Tony Blair first introduced us to in 2002, the ZioNeoCon Model that runs US UK EU politics.The problem is, nobody really wants to discuss it openly and get it removed from the core of the Political/ MIC/ Corporate Governance Club because either it ‘doesn’t exist’ or is ‘too difficult’. Sleep on world, the alarm clock has a nice pillow over it.

  • Preparing for the last world war!

    It seems we are not interested in life anymore; we have decided to commit suicide.

    Humanity it seems, has never been in such a suicidal mood, ever, in the whole of history

    All the intelligent people of the world should protest against this American imperial fascist attitude, and force America to stop bringing death to this beautiful planet.

    America has to be put right, it is already late!

    If Donald Trump and his fascist colleagues are not going to listen to the protest of the whole intelligent world, then the only way will be an absolute immediate boycott of all American products and people, lets forget them.

    They are fast asleep!

    Stupidity is a sort of sleep, a deep unawareness.

    You go on doing things not knowing why.

    You go on being involved in a thousand and one situations not knowing why.

    You move through life fast asleep.

    That sleepiness is stupidity.

    Being identified with the mind is stupidity.

    If you remember, if you become aware and the identity is lost with the mind.

    If you are no longer mind, if you feel a transcendence to the mind.

    Intelligence arises.

    Intelligence is a sort of awakening.

    Intelligence is a quality of awareness.

    Asleep, you are stupid.

    Awake, stupidity has disappeared: for the first time, intelligence enters in.

    Intelligent people are not stupid.

    American people, show the world that you are not stupid.

    These politicians and the deep state have been doing exactly what they have always been doing: creating more conflict, more wars, more unrest, more discrimination, more destructive weapons

    Remove all these psychopaths, these criminal oligarchs and politicians from their positions of power.

    Replace them all with people of intelligence, merit and empathy.

    The time is very short and the work is tremendous, but if you have courage, the challenge can be accepted.

    Don’t depend on politicians, they cannot do anything; they are not even aware of where they have been leading humanity, into what darkness…

  • While we all have been propagandized at some point or another in our lives, I refuse to fall victim to it ever agin. I have no faith in any government. (Do you? (Really? (Vote harder?)))

  • It’s 11:50 PM on Jan 7, 2020 and doing a search in my browser for the word “Israel” returns exactly ZERO hits. There’s not a single instance of that word anywhere to be found, either in the article or in the comments. Not one.

    Is that because it’s just a given that Israel was behind the “policy coup” General Clark spoke of? Or is it because Trump’s murder of Soleimani was so clearly in service to Israel that it just goes without saying? Or…is it because, God forbid, no one here dare risk being branded an “anti-Semite”?

    Frankly, there is no acceptable excuse for failing to mention Israel as the central character in this ongoing and blatantly obvious plot that seeks the destruction of her enemy states.

    This is one of those moments in life when silence truly is consent. You, Caitlin, should know that more than anyone. Right now, your silence might as well be a scream. How incredibly sad.

    • Thank God for people like Philip Giraldi, who have the balls to speak the truth, especially when “activists” like Caitlin Johnstone simply can’t muster the courage…

      “In a sense, Iran has from the beginning been the exception to Trump’s no-new-war pledge, a position that might reasonably be directly attributed to his incestuous relationship with the American Jewish community and in particular derived from his pandering to the expressed needs of Israel’s belligerent Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.”

      Source: https://ahtribune.com/world/north-africa-south-west-asia/iran/3782-end-of-america-imperial-ambitions.html

  • Bless You, Ms Johnstone for having the internal fortitude to deal with today’s human beings.

  • Propaganda it is a quintessentially human activity as digestion and respiration and more to the point to the Capitalistic American way, as law suits and Oscars , an extension of this relentless for ever more, land, wealth ,markets and Empire to conquer, to monopolize and to dominate was ingrained in every pioneer to clear the land of all those uncivilized less industrious ruthless coloured people through propaganda

    • As a child in Australia we all would stand when the national anthem was played at the cinema and before class every morning.
      That ritual faded like the sun bleached pictures of elizabeth regina on the classroom walls.
      A little later I went to junior high in a rich DC neighbourhood with the children of the elite – the politicians and lobbyists, the businessmen and diplomats. I lasted about six weeks before the taunts and bullying had me reciting the pledge of allegiance with the rest of the suckers.
      We would stand facing the flag that hung in every room, hands on hearts, and recite “I pledge allegiance to the flag and to the republic for which it stands, one nation under god, with liberty and justice for all.”
      With every child in the USA.
      I had to repeat that year when I returned to an Australian school.

  • Right now we deplorables can still express an opinion in public, without risking jail time, that is diametrically opposite to the web of false narratives that constitute the central viscera of Washington’s ever present, all-encompassing Matrix of shameless propaganda. We can still dare to suggest that the future welfare of the entire world, this ruthless North American bastion of militarism included, would be far better off if Uncle Sam were administered a sound pummeling by all the countries he is trying to beat down for the simple purpose of extending his hegemony to every nook and cranny of the entire planet.

    There seems to be no other way to destroy Sam’s pathological hubris and will to power that are the sick motives that drive his deadly immoral behavior. I’ll repeat, the warmongers in Washington need to be rendered harmless to the rest of humanity in the only ways they are capable of understanding: by taking away their weapons of planetary destruction and their limitless ability to create money from nothing. The USA needs to be defeated on the battlefield and in the world financial arena. Nothing less will save the human species.

    I daresay that most readers who follow Caitlin believe these things to be truth. As the idiots in charge of this madhouse continue to spiral ever closer to the flame of self-annihilation by their reckless actions, I wonder how much longer this freedom of speech under our extant but corroding constitution will continue to be allowed? How much longer till they start rounding up the dissidents that dare speak out in public? How much longer till Hitlery Clinton starts blaming the independent on-line media and those readers who follow and endorse journalists such as Caitlin for this country’s self-induced collapse, the way she has ceaselessly blamed Putin and Russia? What then happens next?

  • Caitlin – That is perhaps the best piece you’ve written up until now. I guess our role as awake people watching the complete insanity burn like the hot and and unforgiving Australian fires is to bravely inform our friends and neighbors that they are being brainwashed and yet they can’t see it. I was talking with a guy, the kind that’s always right, who was matter-of-factly saying that’s about time we kick some Iranian butt as if he’s talking about his favorite football team. When I questioned him I could see that I wasn’t prepared to debate him. Now it’s clear that I can say is, “Sir you’ve been hoodwinked. And what’s really sad is that you can’t see it.”

    • German citizens had the same problem in the late ‘30’s.
      They too, were propagandize.
      Only difference was different a boogie man narrative.

      • Were you there? Or are you too being propagandized …

  • Seriously, John I’d like to agree with your view regards fossil depletion. However the FACTS beg to differ. I have been hearing about the ALLEGED depletion of fossil oils ever since the 70’s. Way back in the day when the stuff was cheap as. I ran a service station back then, and such issues were the talk of the day. Now we’re in the 2020’s and we are still hearing this crap ?????? IMHO, the only reason we are hearing this crap, is to justify the exhorbitant charges they impose on us to buy the stuff. Just like the CO2 Global warming crap. No amount of taxes introduced from the peasants will make one iota dent in Global warming, which will continue irreguardless of the puny efforts of human kind.

    • Never the less Eddy, fossil fuels, like all else on space ball Earth is in finite supply if it cannot be replaced by some means of restoration.
      We were short on oil, the first quart we pulled out of the ground, because we didn’t restore it.
      Surely you are aware, some day, it will cost more to extract it than what it’s worth.

      • If we had an actual free market, a new energy source would be discovered/invented as the price of petrol rises, and we would simply use less. Since we don’t, we have a corporate owned economy that derives a lot of profit from oil, and thus will suppress any such advance, and encourages the notion we have “right” to use as much as we like. Which makes those nations that produce oil villains as the price rises.

      • On that day our modern society will regress to a hopefully saner model. Same goes for our water usage as well.

  • I think you should provide your readers with an online questionnaire. Find out their political leanings, age, location, etc. Then provide a detailed set of yes/no questions and post the results.

  • ​I would like to propose to the Iranian government that they “paint” all tankers​,​ carrying oil paid for in $US through the Strait of Hormuz, with missile targeting radar, and announce that they won’t actually start sinking them yet.
    China can start paying for oil in Yuan/Renmenbi, or even Euros.
    Lloyd’s of Lond​o​n can say that insurance will be higher for oil bought in $US.​ ​
    ​That will hasten the fall of the Petrobuck-Empire.​
    http://www.johndayblog.com/2020/01/responses.html

    One thing we can be sure of is that no global reserve currency lasts forever, and the empire that extracts wealth with the currency, goes down with the currency, because getting stuff for free for so long de-industrializes the seat of empire.
    Another thing we can be sure of is that we are right around the peak-forever, of fossil fuel powered industrial society.
    What we can’t be sure of is the progression from here, but we can be pretty sure of completely wholehearted attempts to manipulate us en-masse to the will of the power elites.
    We should have compassion for them. This is more than they can deal with, even with all the smart guys and gals and computers and spies and AI.
    This is a really hard problem.
    Grow vegetables!

  • The whole thing is total insanity. How can we support a pro life agenda is the real question. The military and medical industrial complex have become the owners of America. Listen to Eisenhower’s presidential exit address from the 50’s to realize how long this has been true.

  • No need to argue with these absolutists. Save your energy.

  • You r link to unsubscribe does not work please stop sending me emails

  • The stupid hurts.

  • Excellent as always. The point about us all being propagandised. I remember beginning to wake up to that back in t he 1980s when I was subscribing to the New Internationalist. And seeing for the first what I then knew as the Peter’s Projection map of the world – having never questioned or properly “read” the Mercator Projection. That began a process of questioning of the cui bono variety – trying to get behind the apparent! Linking by-line journalists to particular ideologies and so forth. You are now one of my guides. Taihen arigatai to omou!

  • I support everything you’ve ever said. The internet is a hive of scum and villainy. The people fighting you are lost souls. It will always be this way. Sad truth.

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