HomeArticleIt’s A Big Club, And You Ain’t In It: Notes From The Edge Of The Narrative Matrix

It’s A Big Club, And You Ain’t In It: Notes From The Edge Of The Narrative Matrix

Listen to a reading of this article:

Brian Stelter went from a mainstream media gig to a gig at Harvard. Jen Psaki went from a gig in the Biden administration to a gig in the mainstream media. Mike Pompeo went from a gig in the Trump administration to a gig with a DC think tank. It’s a big club, and you ain’t in it.

I’m actually less disdainful of the British royal family than I am of all the sniveling sycophants who are worshipping them right now. The royals were born into this ridiculous charade; these losers are choosing it.

Brits who lived their whole lives thinking it was their free choice to have a royal family have been getting a rude awakening these last few days:

The Australian Football League was going to have a moment of silence for the queen but cancelled it when they realized it was the AFLW Indigenous round, meant to honor Indigenous Australians. Which actually tells you everything you need to know about the queen, and Australia.

“Oh wait it’s the Indigenous round, we probably shouldn’t celebrate Her Majesty.”

“Oh yeah why not?”

“Well you know, on account of all the genocide and killing and stealing and oppression and brutality.”

“Wait, so you’re saying it would have been okay honor people who did those things any other time?”

“Sure, yeah.”

It’s like saying we were going to have a moment of silence for the Hitler family, but then we realized it’s Yom Kippur and we didn’t want to be disrespectful to Jews who might find honoring Hitler offensive on that particular day.

Of course the US empire wanted the war in Ukraine. That’s why it knowingly provoked it and actively intervened to prevent peace from breaking out in the early days of the conflict. It’s been using this war to advance its geostrategic interests in Eurasia at very little cost to itself.

From 2016-2019, mainstream liberals were indoctrinated with hatred of Russia using a conspiracy theory born of the US intelligence cartel that the White House had been infiltrated by the Kremlin. Now a deliberately provoked, totally unrelated war leverages that hate.

Hmm.

Spinmeisters now act like the discredited Trump-Russia collusion narrative never happened; this narrative which monopolized the news media and greatly altered public perception of Moscow on totally baseless grounds has been memory holed while its propaganda effects live on. We’re looking at a war in Ukraine that was knowingly provoked, by the very same empire whose propaganda engine just spent years manipulating the public into hating Russia for reasons that were (A) false and (B) completely unrelated to Ukraine. And now those very same liberals who spent years insisting that Trump’s entire family and cabinet were moments away from being dragged from the White House in chains are all waving blue and yellow flags and shouting “Slava Ukraini!”

It would have taken a pretty strong propaganda push to shift mainstream liberals from the position they were at just a few years ago:

Hmm. Hmm, hmm, hmm.

If we were being told the truth about this war they wouldn’t be banning Russian media, we wouldn’t be hearing propagandistic messaging like “unprovoked invasion” at every mention of Ukraine, and those expressing skepticism about all this wouldn’t be swarmed by astroturf empire trolls.

My critics are like, “You’re not a REAL anti-imperialist, if you were you’d be assisting the propaganda campaigns of the most powerful empire that has ever existed to help it subvert and conquer the nations who disobey its commands.”

I will not mitigate my criticisms of the empire I live in by equating them with the lesser crimes of other countries. Why would you even want me to do that? The only honest reason I can think of is that you want me to go easy on your cognitive dissonance. No. Fuck off. Face it. Turn and face the horror our empire inflicts on the world.

Of course it would be easier to shake my fist at foreigners rather than demand change in the empire that my country is a part of. Duh. That’s why you do it. I will not.

People want me to equate the full magnitude of the murderous butchery and weaponized starvation that our western empire is engaged in with these piddling crimes of other countries so they don’t feel bad. Fuck that. Feel bad. Feeling bad means you’ll need/want to change it.

Gosh that Pentagon-commissioned 2019 Rand Corp paper on how to break Russia is just chock full of convenient coincidences:

People defend capitalism on the grounds that it creates abundance, and in a sense they’re right: capitalism is an effective way to drive up production and consumption. The problem is there’s no wisdom guiding it, so the world is being choked with garbage while people go hungry.

Haves exploiting the labor of have-nots will indeed get the gears of industry creating lots of stuff. But now we’re creating too much stuff, so much that it’s killing our biosphere, even as vast inequalities remain and far too many go without the basic necessities in life. The “invisible hand” of the free market is worshipped as a sentient deity who always knows what’s best, but in reality it’s completely bereft of wisdom and intelligence and cannot move in harmony with the real needs of the real world. It’s a mindless force that is driving us to disaster.

This isn’t a problem you can just ignore. You can’t keep waxing on about how much stuff capitalism has been able to create while that stuff is destroying our ecosystem and making this planet uninhabitable. It’s a problem that urgently needs solving, and capitalism can’t solve it.

Capitalism offers no solution to the problems of ecocide and inequality. As long as exploitation remains profitable, exploitation will remain. As long as ecocide remains profitable, ecocide will continue. Human behavior cannot remain driven by profit. We need something new.

___________________

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Latest comments

  • “People defend capitalism on the grounds that it creates abundance, and in a sense they’re right: capitalism is an effective way to drive up production and consumption. The problem is there’s no wisdom guiding it, so the world is being choked with garbage while people go hungry.” Capitalism also leads to inequality and monopoly, which can lead to fascism.

    https://youtu.be/Nyvxt1svxso

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  • If you had bothered to step back for a moment you would have noticed that the flat earth was double speak for torn jeans.

  • It is long gone the days when Harvard used to have remarkable professionals and reputation.
    Almost the entire number of applicants to go through the selective process to ingress in a PhD program is filled with candidates backed up by governmental institutions in America. These will not bring innovation neither progress in any area but to keep the agenda. Foreign applicants are entirely from governmental institutions abroad friendly to the US policies.
    A couple of weeks ago one of these Ph’D offered me to lead a project where he would be in charge. My solid background in practices according to him would be a valuable asset to the project. Plus, one million in my pockets. I politely turned down. I was turned down in Harvard and Yale some decades ago to benefit those “genius” backed up by the US government. It would not be fair for them to let one retard like me economically blended for debunking some theories from experts vouched by the government. The ones who want to have some grasp of my knowledge I always say – “If by any chance your research will have success, flee away from the government. Dig a deep hole and throw everything inside. Go fish, learn something new and stay away from governmental agencies.”

  • “People defend capitalism on the grounds that it creates abundance, and in a sense they’re right: capitalism is an effective way to drive up production and consumption. The problem is there’s no wisdom guiding it, so the world is being choked with garbage while people go hungry.”

    A very cogent argument. Capitalism, as an economical system, is good at production but bad at distribution to best public benefit.

    “You can’t keep waxing on about how much stuff capitalism has been able to create while that stuff is destroying our ecosystem and making this planet uninhabitable. It’s a problem that urgently needs solving, and capitalism can’t solve it.”

    So, because capitalism is good at creating things, it is responsible for destroying our ecosystem? It’s not that we the people want more and more, easier lives, more fun through materialism, more food, etc.?

    In other words, assume that the workers in the corporations owned the corporations, that every company was a co-op. Would this significantly change the operation of the companies? Would they still not seek to meet what people demand/want and thereby improve their standard of life?

    I’ve worked in both worker-owned and public companies … there’s a significant difference in how one’s treated; but there’s little difference in how one treats the world.

    • “significant difference in how one’s treated” Exactly ! In a competitive market economy, the distribution of production is consumer driven, it is the distribution of the “Profit” that makes the difference. A sharing based on work and not on Capital.
      In a centralised economy there is no or little excess (Eg cars in the USSR) and no ‘Profit’ to distribute to anyone. Thus the work incentive is destroyed.
      The western ‘democracies’ is the worst of both worlds, they use excessive Taxes to centralise the economy (EG MIC, Energy, Pharma) and distribute profits to ‘Cronies’ via Capital share.
      Interesting that the Ancient (Sumer, Egypt etc.) demanded 10% [tithes], the feudal system claimed 20%-25% [one day per week plus occasional wars] and the Modern system claims between 50% and 70% [add all the taxes you pay both direct and indirect, before and after your pay-check].
      Ain’t progress great !

  • For decades, the anti-choice movement has attempted to brand itself as “pro-life,” but it’s not hard to see through their charade. As “pro-life” Republicans remain focused on criminalizing abortion, it’s not lost on Americans that this is the exact same Republican party that is hellbent on harming women and families with their regressive policies (prochoiceamerica.org).

    It’s pretty hard to call yourself “pro-life” when you’re actively working to (prochoiceamerica.org):
    Imprison or execute women who access safe abortion care.
    Tear babies away from their parents and lock them in cages, with no plan to reunite them.
    Silence doctors and strip reproductive healthcare away from millions of low-income people.
    Stand by while the maternal mortality rates skyrocket and women – especially Black women – die in childbirth.
    Deny affordable healthcare coverage to people with pre-existing conditions.
    Cut programs that feed hungry kids.
    Block access to HIV testing and treatment across the globe.
    Incite far-right violence with lies about abortion.

    “Pro-life” is a lie. For example, If the ruling-class were “Pro-life,” why would they send young women and men to die fighting endless illegal corporate wars? “Pro-life” is a pretense that is really about anti-choice. If the ruling-class were “Pro-life,” wouldn’t the citizens of the U.S. have Medicare for all? “Pro-life” is a pretense that is really about anti-choice. If the ruling-class were “Pro-life,” why were Doctors (e.g.- Pierre Kory, Michael Yeadon, Andreas Noack, etc.), and their stories about Covid 19 (and medications in lieu of the jab – Ivermectin, etc.), suppressed? “Pro-life,” is a lie that is really about anti-choice. Stop watching MSM (e.g.-NBC, CBS, ABC, FOX, CNN, MSNBC…); you are being propagandized and manipulated through lies…

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    • Another oligarch out to kill the world

  • I’m proud that women have the right to vote; they fought like hell for the right to vote: (Women’s Suffrage Timeline (1840-1920) Crusade For The Vote-crusadeforthevote.org.) Remember, the ruling-class/donor-class is mainly comprised of men. The ruling-class is about money, power, and control. Most of the men fear losing their power (don’t kid yourself, Ukraine and abortion rights are related to this fear), and the majority could possibly be characterized as misogynists. If the perfidious ruling-class are successful in repressing the rights of women to choose what’s best for them (e.g.- abortion rights), who will be next to lose the freedom to choose? You? Why don’t you support all women and the right to have their voice heard? Stand up for solidarity! Think about it.

    The reason Republicans keep taking away birth control is because Republicans want to take away your birth control. They hate the power it gives women, especially young women and low-income women (salon.com-8/20/2019-Amanda Marcotte)

    Conservatives are modern Puritans and, as H.L. Mencken famously said, they are driven by the “haunting fear that someone, somewhere, may be happy.”

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  • “Of course the US empire wanted the war in Ukraine. That’s why it knowingly provoked it and actively intervened to prevent peace from breaking out in the early days of the conflict. It’s been using this war to advance its geostrategic interests in Eurasia at very little cost to itself”–Caitlin Johnstone

    Caitlin,

    “At v/ little cost to itself”: How do you figure? This war has already cost the U.S. BILLIONS, $ that could be put to FAR better use at home.

    Best,

    S.A. Hogan

    • War is expensive, but only for the working class. For the bosses it’s often very profitable; The money Biden is spending is ours, not his.

    • The US government has NO money – they produce, or manufacture NOTHING. Where do the billions come from? Not from Biden, not from the oligarchs, not from the banks – but the indebtedness of the people to their own future.
      Capitalism eats its own children. Think about it.

    • It cost US nothing.
      When Congress takes on more debt, the Fed issues and sells more bonds to other countries, or prints more dollars.
      Instead of Americans working and producing goods for sale to other countries and repaying the national debt, the Congress gives more funding to the DOD to pretty much extract more resources from other countries or help corporations negotiate better terms for their business in other countries.
      It is economic parasitism. They make people abroad do work to make USD be worth anything. It is only possible because all commodity transactions are settled in dollars and because US Navy controls all marine trade routes/shipping/trade.

  • See those monkeys are wise.

  • My favourite bit is this guy holding up a blank piece of paper in Parliament Square. That raises the issue of pre-emptive strike in a Monty Python spirit, doesn’t it? The guy can’t be arrested because he’s holding a blank piece of paper. Even asking him for his details as this officer did is police overreach. As an MP said ten years ago when the Islamic veil was an issue, “If you start telling people what to wear, where do you stop?” How about what to hold – or stick in your arm for that matter?

    But then the cop “confirmed” that if the paper-holding, so far illegally harassed, customer wrote “Not My King” on it, he would arrest him under the Public Order Act because “someone might be offended”.

    If the cop “confirmed”, it means the guy came up with the idea. You can imagine the dialogue:

    Cop: Why do you hold that blank piece of paper up for?

    Guy: I suppose that if I write “Not My King” on it, you’re going to arrest me?

    Pythonesque surrealism with a whole counter-terrorist team ready to pounce on the guy as soon as he dares to write what he has in mind on what he has in hand.

    What if thousands of Brits turned up somewhere someday holding up blank pieces of paper?

    Would “someone” get offended knowing it means “Not My King”? But then again wouldn’t the cops have to wait until “someone” did get offended to arrest anybody? Because there’s no public disorder until a situation comes to a fight. And how entitled is the public to start a fight over blank pieces of paper? Who should be arrested if they do? Catch 22.

    It reminds me when I was living in London, back in the 70s, I knew this guy who was very funny and also a bit of an anarchist like they made them in those days. One night, he intended to crack a phone in a phone booth to steal the coins and was carrying a screwdriver in his sleeve to that effect. His problem was that he had a suspicious, kind of sneering face. Two bobbies on the beat asked him what he was doing out at that time of the night in that deserted street and I forget the details but he ended up at the police station where they searched him and found the screwdriver.

    Of course, carrying a screwdriver in your sleeve is not illegal, yet it’s pretty ominous. There was a negotiation and they arrived at a compromise. The cops said: “We need a number of arrests to show our superiors we’re not idle. So if you sign a declaration that you intended to crack a public phone but we stopped you first, we’ll let you go”.

    They’d invented the notion of pre-emptive strike that the US and Fill-the-blank militaries later found so handy to shoot and bomb innocent people all over the joint…

    • 356. Going equipped for burglary or theft.
      Criminal Law (Volume 25 (2020), paras 1–552; Volume 26 (2020), paras 553–1014) | Commentary
      356. Going equipped for burglary or theft.
      A person is guilty of an offence if, when not at his place of abode1, he has with him2 any article for use in the course of or in connection3 with any burglary4 or theft5. Where a person is charged with such an offence, proof that he had with him any article made or adapted for use in committing a burglary or theft is evidence that he had it with him for such use.
      Without evidence that the tools carried are usual for his trade or occupation, assumption is that they are intended to use in theft or burglary.

      • I’ve been stopped for suspicion of possession of burglary tools just for walking down the street in the middle of the night with bolt cutters and the like, but I was able to quickly explain what the purpose of each tool was for, I was going to replace an old muffler and anyone who has ever replaced one knows that rusted U-bolts, etcetera often don’t behave well, so you need to be prepared for worse case scenarios, the hold only lasted half a minute as I had given it some thought before hand of what could possibly go wrong. But, yeah, those are those laws where the defendant is assumed guilty and must prove their innocence.

        • Which is why England-Britain is a crappy place to live and why I moved out in 2010. The villages are still green and beautiful but the towns are no longer English in a way that I recognise. Having lived abroad most of my life, I do not know when or why it changed but I don’t like it anymore. I think it was Thatcher and her “Debt Nation” but it doesn’t matter, “England” is gone.

    • When we were told to wear masks for a couple of years because of COVID-19, and some people at grocery stores wearing helmets with face shields, I always laughed hysterically remembering the days of different propaganda about how Iranian and other Muslim women are oppressed because they have to cover their face and hair.

      • Also, there was a big issue in my native France about Islamic veils in 2012 and Sarkozy said in substance that French people couldn’t survive without seeing other people’s face. It was kinda vital to our culture. Ten years later, everybody had to do that in spite of Fauci’s flip-flopping several times over whether masks were any use at all and studies later showing that they don’t make any difference because it’s like wearing a fishing net to stop fleas.

        • Studies show masks kill people, but they don’t.

  • The older I become, the more I am seeing the wisdom of the three monkeys. See No Evil, Hear No Evil, Speak No Evil.

    • No, the wisdom of the three monkeys to stay out of trouble is seen nuffin’, heard nuffin’, said nuffin’

      • See those monkeys are wise.

  • I found this today, an essay by Dr. Moti Mossani

    https://www.veteranstoday.com/2022/09/13/sixteen-pillars-american-democracy/

    ¨Even if you changed everything else that is wrong with the current system,¨ says Caitlin Johnstone, ¨nothing would change if the plutocratic class retained its ability to manipulate the way people think and vote.¨

    Isn’t it great to be quoted by another author as an acknowledged expert?

  • A nation that is supposedly far advanced and one of the leaders of modern civilization and yet it terms of culture it is on the level of eSwatini where the ruling family and one man at its top own everything that has to do with the state. There, the king owns even the lives of ordinary people. There is no justice and equity. Abject poverty is rife and yet the family is deified and worshiped, the good thing being that there are signs that this is changing. I’d be a surprise if the extremely rich eSwatini moron won’t be in the picture in the UK for the funeral only to come back to marry his twentieth wife while the people are hungry. Of all the people, the British should have long ditched the archaic norms of royalty cult just as this must be the case in eSwatini. One hopes the time has come for a revolution without which the UK will become a relic of the past and a dinner table joke for future generations.
    The passing of any person is sad and must be mourned by those who shared space with them but to continue with the myth of one family being above all like in this case is archaic to the core.
    Thanks for dissecting the true nature of the evil empire far more than anyone I know. The simple truth which so many are oblivious to is that the US is by far the biggest danger civilization has ever faced. By virtue of , US Bible-punching, many of us for so long were convinced that evil dwells elsewhere and not in the West. The US and cohorts are not going to accept second class status because they only know themselves in their thinking, as the only ones who have the right to rule, to be rich and to exercise dominion over all they survey even if it takes the proverbial blood on the floor for as long as it takes.

    • Are you joking?
      Compare the lives of the Swazis to that of the Lesotho, Zimbabweans, Mozambicans, Malawians or the Congolese!
      No Swazi has died of starvation in over 100 years. Medical care is available and free, far better than any of the surrounding countries (Except RSA).
      Only the Botswana people fared as well because Charles Kama (and family) kept the tribal-family rule alive and did not allow the SWAPO-ANC-EFF type thugs to take control.
      The Swazi ruler has great plans, ‘Every old person must have a blanket this winter so that none of them should be cold.” “Every school child must have a pair of shoes and a Jersey.” Riches that neighbouring countries can only dream about.
      If Mswati was to cash in all his “Wealth” then distribute it equally, then each Swazi would receive about $2.50 and a lot of good it would do them.
      Jealousy does not suit you, He has 20 happy wives whereas the western men only have a miserable mate and avaricious ex’s.

      • YOU gotta be kidding! “‘Every old person must have a blanket this winter so that none of them should be cold. Every school child must have a pair of shoes and a Jersey” just means that they didn’t even have that before! In 2022!
        Meanwhile, King Mswati buys Rolls-Royces and private jets like it was Christmas! I’m asking you…
        https://www.news.com.au/finance/work/leaders/king-mswati-iii-of-swaziland-slammed-for-spending-millions-on-cars-as-country-suffers/news-story/232406da2d580c9a726ae5160850abc9

        • You do not know the difference between bought and “was gifted”.
          My quotes were from 1985 (when I had a company in Swaziland).
          European countries, USA, CIA and China give toys like that to keep him from forming alliances with the others. Corporations hand out Maybachs for opportunity to get mineral rights.
          China has been there since the 1960s and gets many privileges, which means that CIA et al will give him anything he asks for.
          Marriages are primarily for political reason, to keep the families tied to the monarchy.
          If you actually visited the country, or any country for that matter you would see that 90% of what you read is crap.Check the Swazi road system and you would know that Rolls-Royce and Maybach’s are a joke. It takes about an hour to get from one side to the other and a Unimog is the best transport mode.
          Apart from attending Williams wedding to Kate, he probably only flies out of the country once every 3 years and then it is in the DC-8

          • FYI, I spent my whole life visiting countries, over 50 of them, half of them several times. You’re such an arrogant and deluded asshole it beggars belief! As for the article linked, it does say the king “bought”, not “was gifted”.
            FYI also, 1985 was 37 years ago in case you haven’t noticed.

            • Sorry, but is this type of rebuttal necessary? Go easy on the name calling of people who post comments, right or wrong, please!

            • Swaziland: King Mswati Gets a Plane for Forty-fourth Birthday
              cfr.org › blog › swaziland-king-mswati-gets-plane-forty-fourth-birthday
              The Swazi prime minister has announced that a ’development partner’ has presented King Mswati III, forty-four, with a revamped MD-87 private jet as a ’birthday present.’
              The second plane is the official eSwatini plane as in “Air Force One” and used by ministers of state..
              I visited Madeira, for 5 hours once. Wow, another country I have ‘visited’.
              As for your “visited 50 countries” changing planes at the airport hardly counts as a visit, a packaged 2 day stop over on a cruise hardly counts as a visit, but you are determined to argue and have absolutely no clue on how to conduct a discussion.
              I am fully aware of how to calculate dates but thank you for reminding me.

    • As what? As we aren’t human, because your City of London via MI6, and Canada’s UK controlled intelligence agencies control both the CIA & FBI and whatever else? The UK was behind the assassination of eight of our most progressive presidents, and you have the audacity to call us rude and crude, when you sweet gentlemen raised us as cattle to fight your battles for you,?

  • Why Europe’s mindset will not change? “EU will prevail over Russia” – President Ursula Von der Leyen said on Wednesday 09/14. “This is not only a war unleashed by Russia against Ukraine, this is also a war on our energy. It’s a war on our economy. It’s a war on our values. It’s a war on our future. It’s about autocracy against democracy,”
    Europe became possible as a powerful economic region thanks to cheap Russian energy. What Russia gained from it? NATO expansion, nuclear warheads close to the Russian borders, terrorism sponsored by MI5-6, CIA to destabilize former soviet republics and Russia, resurrection of nazi ideologies to enlist people willing to fight a rematch against Russia to avenge the end of Nazi and Fascism after ww2 but pretty much alive in the darkness, mafia, terrorist organizations backed up by George Soros NGO’s, Warren Buffet, Bill Gates, Jeff Bezos, Google, Facebook, Twitter, MSM, Pentagon, CIA, White House.
    Why the US-UK empire mindset will not change? Same answer as Ursula but adding to it the final outcome to make Russia Balkanized.
    Europe is broken but big talk never ends.
    It’s already in place that moment where “taking away the EU and US empire power to make wars and terrorism will put an end to an era of western terrorism towards the world”. Only hot air and MSM are holding their pants.
    If I was the Russian leader, I would leave Europe for good to get US gas, Qatar gas, Saudi Arabia gas or elsewhere. It is pointless to keep good relationship with a bunch of countries who only aim to destroy Russia.
    Let us wait 20 years to see what will be of Europe living with expensive gas coming from America and Asia.
    I’m done with Europe. Good luck Europe. Goodbye.

    • These dead men and women walking who suppose they can think, need to be grateful that Putin is president. They hardly realize that the biggest danger they are facing is to have Putin deposed and be replaced by someone who will be more firm with their adversarial attitude.

    • LOL, the people of the democracies of Europe have a choice; the masses can either die in silence or rise up and demand that the gas be turned back on.

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  • Whilst I admire CJ’s passion and her writing ability, unfortunately that very passion is her downfall. To analyse and solve a problem one needs to study it dis-passionately.
    Her intellect and command of language allows her to destroy 90% of her detractors and make fools of those who oppose her views. Up until the 1960s, there were (and are) incredibly persuasive arguments for the “Flat Earth” hypothesis, and CJ could have argued them very passionately and persuasively, but she still would have been wrong, as demonstrated when the photos were returned from Sputnik.
    If she were to step back, take some time and examine history (not the rubbish presented in schools and colleges, but independent study and thought) she would discover that for the last 20,000 years the society that functions best in terms of safety and well being for the group, whatever size that is, is a benevolent despotism.
    From the Family unit to World Government the ONLY long term working solution is a despot with the welfare of the group as their primary aim.
    The only problem is how the despot is chosen-appointed.The normal method is by Birth-Descent, i.e. a form of Monarchy. However Sweden became the world leader in citizen ‘well-being’ by voting for Bernadotte to be their ‘King’. Genghis, Caesar, Castro etc. did it by killing off their opponents, but then were supported by the citizens as they provided a far better standard of living than previous. Putin, Xi, all the central Stans and Belarus are a mixture of family, single party, or sheer popularity, but rule as dictators (with democratic trimmings) but have primarily the welfare of their countries at the basis of their rules.
    Societal progress depends almost entirely on technology. From the Archimedes screw, the Shadoof, lead piping, the wheel, movable type printing, Steam, Electricity, the brilliant advances of the last two centuries have been the reason for civilisations improvement in condition not politics or economic ‘isms’.
    It goes against all the brain-washing of our up-bringing, but any rational individual realises that 20,000 years of history reveals a single well trained, well meaning dictator is the most beneficial means of rule. Of course they have to be ruthless with evil doers, but having lived in the Middle East, hand chopping (or the mere threat of it) means never having to lock cars or doors. Vlad ensured that bandits, thieves and opposition rarely caused problems. Impaling them and leaving their bodies on display caused people to have second thoughts about crime. (As compared to the US current method’ “Yes you killed 3 old ladies but if you promise not to do it again, you can go home.)
    The English know that the Monarchy is far more concerned with the people’s welfare than that crowd of crap in Westminster. The Crap was instituted by bankers and merchants and the ordinary people have been screwed ever since.
    For a brief glorious time after WW2, the ‘Labour’ movement took power and Britain had Hospitals(NHS), Schools (Grammar), Universities and factories that were better than any in the world, and the ordinary person was working hard and free of debt. Then came Thatcher who ‘sold’ ( on credit) to her cronies, the wealth that the working people had accumulated and we were back to step one. Unaffordable health care, rubbish schools for the peasant and very expensive (excellent) education for the wealthy, life indebtedness for a house, and work exported to China.
    Charles for all his stupidity about climate would still be a far better “government” than the 800 or so swine at the Westminster trough.

    • What a load of rubbish! Deimocracy eh? The reign of terror (deimos in Greek) so that people can leave their houses and cars unlocked? Yet in Saudi Arabia, they behead so many “evil-doers” that the executioner has tennis elbow! Doesn’t look like the threat has deterred those guys much!
      And where do you find what Voltaire called your “despote éclairé”? He thought Frederick II of Prussia was one but promptly changed his mind after meeting him.
      Who are your models? Cromwell, Robespierre, Mussolini?
      This kind of (literally) fascist rhetoric – an iron fist in an iron glove – usually comes out of the brains of very insecure persons.

      • As for your Flat Earth comparison, this is a ridiculous sophism. She “could have argued” but she “would have been wrong”. This is the archetype of the comparison that doesn’t mean a thing. Nothing allows you to say that she might have argued that to start with and so it is totally irrelevant. Yet it is here to postulate that just as C.J. “would have been wrong” if she’d argued in favour of Flat Earth, she’s just as wrong in what she writes today. More convoluted than that, you die! Why not try to focus on reality sometimes?

        • im still trying to figure out what incredibly persuasive arguments there were for a flat earth, after people had sailed and flown around the globe thousands of times.

      • You fail to provide any case to support you. I will not bother with you until you actually have a response other than vituperative.
        The crime rate in ME is effectively zero. Compare that with USA and the West.
        I gave examples, but you are too blind to see them.
        Sparta is another, 600 years of prosperity and peace, taken as an example by all Greece until the money lenders took over. Ottoman empire, Mongol empire, Egyptian and Sumerian empires, but because you did not see them on TV they do not exist for you.
        And Yes, Hitler took the poorest country in Europe in 1932 and turned it into the richest in Europe in a space of 7 years.

        “Atrocity propaganda is how we won the war. And we’re only really beginning with it now! We will continue this atrocity propaganda, we will escalate it until nobody will accept even a good word from the Germans, until all the sympathy they may still have abroad will have been destroyed and they themselves will be so confused that they will no longer know what they are doing. Once that has been achieved, once they begin to run down their own country and their own people, not reluctantly but with eagerness to please the victors, only then will our victory be complete. It will never be final. Re-education needs careful tending, like an English lawn. Even one moment of negligence, and the weeds crop up again – those indestructible weeds of historical truth.” – Sefton Delmer, 1904-1979, former British Chief of Black propaganda, said after the German surrender, in 1945, in a conversation with the German professor of international law, Dr. Friedrich Grimm
        Either get an education (EG learn the meaning of Fascism) or go play with the children.

        • Sparta is an example of “peace”??? wtf are you on.

          • The Spartans were actually at war for perhaps 10% of their 600 years. There were skirmishes and a few revolts but actual battles lasted only a few days to weeks and were spread over the 600 years.
            Inside Sparta, they had peace and only at the borders did they have problems.
            They were famed warriors but the majority of the citizens were not soldiers, only the best were taken into the military. All boys were tested, but most did not prove worthy. Just as the Romans and British had excellent warriors but not many.
            The Mongols were about the only nation with nearly 100% men as warriors.

    • Having followed the Rwandan story since the genocide there I agree somewhat but the snag being that despotic regimes fail to establish fair and stable mechanisms for succession. This often, in my view creates conditions of instability and uncertainty. At the same time, in life nothing is guaranteed. Thanks for the perspective still.

      • Exactly, hence “Monarchy”. It fails after time as all families dynasties do, the descendants lose the concept of Noblesse Oblige. Nobility has obligations.
        For several hundred years England trained their young nobility, and they established a civilisation that spanned the world, but it was wiped out in the trenches of Belgium where the life expectancy of a subaltern (almost exclusively the nobility) was 15 mins after he blew the whistle.

        “The best argument against democracy is a five–minute conversation with the average voter.” — Winston Churchill

        “One of the humbling aspects of writing about philosophical issues is that, no matter how much you believe you’ve stumbled upon a fresh insight, it is virtually certain that someone who died 2000 years ago has already thought of your idea.”
        Unknown

        “Democracy passes into despotism.”
        Plato 427 BC-347 BC

    • There is theoretical truth in your remarks. As Edward Bellamy pointed out, a king or queen was supposed to take care of his or her subjects as a part of his or her job. Not so, of course, in capitalism, where the capitalists, who always take control of whatever government they operate in, are not even theoretically responsible for the welfare of people (or planet),

    • “… for the last 20,000 years the society that functions best in terms of safety and well being for the group, whatever size that is, is a benevolent despotism.
      From the Family unit to World Government the ONLY long term working solution is a despot with the welfare of the group as their primary aim.” – compared to what other society?

      “… the ONLY long term working solution is a despot with the welfare of the group as their primary aim” – every despot and sycophantic subject would argue that for obvious reasons.

      “… the brilliant advances of the last two centuries have been the reason for civilisations improvement in condition not politics or economic ‘isms’.” – is it only correlation with there being less monarchy?

      “The English know that the Monarchy is far more concerned with the people’s welfare than that crowd of crap in Westminster.” – could it be they were educated to believe that, to be submissive to their despots?

    • If you had bothered to step back for a moment you would have noticed that the flat earth was double speak for torn jeans.

  • The “threat to democracy” is a threat to democracy interpreted by the ruling-class/donor-class. The interpretation will encompass any act or rhetoric that interferes with the money, power, taxation, and control, by the ruling-class. They will use their discretionary power, or situational ethics, to identify, repress, or expunge any threat to “their democracy.” The political appointees (e.g.- Mitch McConnell, Nancy Pelosi, Joe Biden, Joe Manchin, etc.) ensure a democratic environment for the pernicious donor-class (by co-opting, graft, threat of blackballing, etc.) The rest of us (working-class), we live life in the U.S., subject to predatory capitalism. The title, “threat to democracy,” reminds me of the title, “war on terror.” That is, both titles allow for expansive and comprehensive interpretations, and can be manipulated to suit the agenda of selfish special-interests (e.g.- just who are the terrorists and what are the threats?) For example, beware of the US’ designer title: Operation Enduring Freedom (did the freedom endure?), Operation Desert Storm (relax, it’s only a sandstorm.), Operation Iraqi Freedom (once again, the U.S. exported copious amounts of freedom and democracy, so now they’re fresh out), Operation Indian Ocean (the U.S. killed Al-Shabaab leader Moktar Ali Zubeyr thereby eliminating any threats to democracy?) …
    More accurately, the U.S. hastily represses/lambastes/obliterates any fledgling attempts, by sovereign countries, to foster socialism, create their own currency/fiat, enhance human-rights, or reject the US’ “rules-based world-order”: these efforts might compete with, and highlight the failed state…that is the U.S.A.

    Thank you (Caitlin, et al.) for the informative articles…

  • “Human behavior cannot remain driven by profit. We need something new.”

    Not at all! This is the only system that works beyond slavery. You work to earn more than your expenses in life, so you can build up capital to retire on or leave to your kids, everyone does it.. There’s room in there for doing ‘freebies’ for other people, also known as charity. If I’m making widgets and selling them, I’m not going to be making them very long if I don’t sell them for more than it costs me.

    The problem is that people elect Govts for some strange reason, they feel the need to be governed. This destroys capitalism straight away as now Govts are telling you what you’re allowed to do, and the raw freedom to make a buck vanishes.

    All the problems you talk about come from Govt, not capitalism. Swapping capitalism for any other -ism will not change anything, except make the Govt and their cronies richer.

    • Totally agree!

    • Capitalism *is* government. Private property is government. Capitalists just endlessly lie about it to everyone. I love seeing ancaps call people ‘statist’ and then support the idea that they have any right to tell anyone, “you’re not allowed to walk on that beach, because I say so.” Statists, every one of them, more than I am or ever will be.

      It is so bad now, that in the so-called “land of the free,” we are less free than ever in homo sapiens’ existence, for over 300,000 years of just our species, to walk under sun & moon wherever we want, because of POSTED: No Trespassing signs and barbed wire. Government. It’s even worse than medieval conditions.

      Guess which country is most expensive to leave? That’s right, the US, at $2350 to renounce citizenship, which is six times the amount of money that 60% of the public doesn’t have to meet emergencies in this trash-filled hellhole. What freedom.

      And what does the capitalist worship publicly? In the US, it’s the flag (gov’t symbol), the Constitution (gov’t document), the police (gov’t strong-arm), and military (same). I will never, ever worship or cheer a politician like a Trump or Biden fan does.

      The American capitalist is especially odious, but lucky the ‘left’ doesn’t see it. Hilariously, just as soon as every Republican announced ‘I’m a libertarian,’ the entire media, ‘left’ included, curiously started ignoring the death penalty, and now for the last 20 years. Here a story, there a story, but nothing else.

      The left often says, ‘They want to return to feudalism,’ but it’s far, far worse. The feudalists allowed commons. Capitalists, with their love of government, don’t. They want to own the world and then tell you to buy in through their system even to exist on it, which of course, isn’t government.

      In the US, the most ardent ‘antigovernment’ bleater will call the government and complain if their neighbor’s lawn isn’t as short as a marine’s hair cut.

      The boss is government, too. And yes, it’s still censorship when Twitter does it.

    • You are wrong.

      There never was, and never can be, a “Free Market” economy. The first thing that any successful person does is get rid of competition by any means necessary. Licenses, regulations, restrictions or merely burning the other business to the ground, or even that American way, sue them into bankruptcy
      Capitalism is about “ME, Me, Me.”
      It will always result in a single person/corporation/entity owning everything and all the rest being debt/wage slaves to the individual who controls the resources and machines.
      Unfortunately, the west merely denigrates Marx and never allowed its’ citizens to actually study his work.
      The Usury-Credit trap has been used for the last 10,000 years to enslave the greedy-stupid masses and because the masses are greedy-stupid, it will continue for the next 10,000. When a government-religion-group outlaw Usury, then they are called “The Axis of Evil” and the Capitalists declare (a very real) war on them until they are destroyed. E.G. The Crusades, the Jewish (190) expulsions, the Middle East and that swine Putin who got rid of Sovereign debt and started actually building a better (Rothschild free) society.
      Jack London describes the perception of “the great mass of the people [who] still persisted in the belief that they ruled the country by virtue of their ballots,” when “[i]n reality, the country was ruled by what were called political machines. At first the machine bosses charged the master capitalists extortionate tolls for legislation; but in a short time the master capitalists found it cheaper to own the political machines themselves and to hire the machine bosses.”
      They own you, they own the politicians, they own the military and police, they own the media, and yes you are a slave !

      “Under the relentless thrust of accelerating over-population and increasing over-organisation, and by means of ever more effective methods of mind-manipulation, the democracies will change their nature; the quaint old forms—elections, parliaments, Supreme Courts and all the rest—will remain. The underlying substance will be a new kind of non-violent totalitarianism. All the traditional names, all the hallowed slogans will remain exactly what they were in the good old days. Democracy and freedom will be the theme of every broadcast and editorial—but Democracy and freedom in a strictly Pickwickian sense. Meanwhile the ruling oligarchy and its highly trained elite of soldiers, policemen, thought-manufacturers and mind-manipulators will quietly run the show as they see fit.”
      Aldous Huxley, Brave New World Revisited

    • “You work to earn more than your expenses in life, so you can build up capital to retire on or leave to your kids, everyone does it”

      That’s what you think capitalism is? Ignorant monkey. Learn more, talk less.

      • Good Christ, you call me an ignorant monkey ????

        • Who’s talking to you, paranoid egomaniac?

          • You might ask yourself that same question.

    • Another Moonie of politics. I’ve concluded after twenty years of arguing with libertarians that it is a political religion for dumb guys. They have a fantasy argument about cronies and corruption ruining their sacred laissez faire capitalism, but have no idea how to address them. In a system of capital accumulation, it’s possible to become very rich and to promote your self interest, and to collude with other rich guys against the poor and working class, without government. I watched Jimmy Dore arguing with libertarians recently. Dore proposed public funding of elections to address the influence of the rich. The libertarian responded with the basic make government small enough to drown in the bathtub. There is corruption at the city and state level right now and local governments can’t fund national projects like fusion power or rein in multinational corporations. No, the libertarian thinks the holy market place will provide. Hey libertarian, read Caitlin’s article again and use your mind to think rather than spouting your dogma which doesn’t stand up to critique. You might try reading Marx. I’ve never known a libertarian to do that, they just worship Saint Ron Paul.

  • “As long as exploitation remains profitable, exploitation will remain.

    Profit depends on exploitation. Capital is privately owned. A minority of greedy are in charge. As long as YOU are fine with it, exploitation remains. Surplus value goes to the 1%. Workers should own the means of production, not suit wearing lizards.

    • Ah, but the workers then exploit each other. They appoint commissars and foremen to represent of manage them and guess what, those workers become exploiters. Orwell “Animal Farm” explains what happens.
      It is Human nature to take advantage and acquire better conditions for oneself.
      Religion tries-tried to overcome this by making self-denial a virtue. It doesn’t work very well. Then they make greed a vice but that doesn’t work either. I don’t have the answer, but then 20,000 years of society hasn’t found one either.
      Maybe one day ….

      “Through Russia comes the hope of the world. Not in respect to what is sometimes termed Communism or Bolshevism — no! But freedom — freedom! That each man will live for his fellow man. The principle has been born there. It will take years for it to be crystallised; yet out of Russia comes again the hope of the world.” ~
      Edgar Cayce circa 1935

      • Sure! Solzhenitsyn explains in detail in The Gulag Archipelago, started twenty years after this “prophecy”, how it definitely didn’t come to pass and how ruthless bastards were ruling the joint just the same…

        • When are you going to learn to read ????
          “…. Not in respect to what is sometimes termed Communism or Bolshevism”.
          Please engage brain before commenting, (That is if you possess one.)

          • So this guy said this in 1935. When is it gonna come to pass? And when was the principle of each man living for his fellow man born there outside bolshevism and communism?
            Under the tsars? Your modern Nostradamus seems to be as confused as you are.

            • You cannot help but be stupid can you ?
              When does any prophecy come to pass ?
              You don’t read, you can’t think, and yet you make comments.
              You join in other’s discussions just so that you keep antagonisms going.
              What a waste of electrons.

      • “…but the workers then exploit each other.”
        “It is Human nature to take advantage…”
        “…self-denial a virtue. It doesn’t work very well.”
        “…greed a vice but that doesn’t work either.”

        That’s quite a load of postmodernism packed into a handful of sentences.

        I don’t have the answer either. However, through my lifelong, never ending search for “the answer”, I encountered postmodernism a long time ago… and quickly tossed that BS in the garbage.

        • It actually is the very antithesis of postmodernism.
          It supports values and certainties. Scepticism, yes but that can also be called “Reality” and objectivism.

          • Thanks for the comment but I disagree.

            “…but the workers then exploit each other.” implies that exploitation is an inevitable human behavior.
            “It is Human nature to take advantage…” couldn’t be more clearly postmodernist.
            “…self-denial a virtue. It doesn’t work very well.” implies that self control is beyond human capacity.
            “…greed a vice but that doesn’t work either.” implies that humans are inevitably destined to be controlled by their greed.

            The clear antithesis would be:
            “…but the workers then exploit each other.” Looking at the system that the workers find themselves in it’s no surprise that they behave like that. The system basically forces them to compete against each other.

            • ” Postmodernism rejects the possibility of unmediated reality or objectively-rational knowledge, asserting that all interpretations are contingent on the perspective from which they are made; claims to objective fact are dismissed as naive realism”.

              In one breath you are asserting that I am making claims that are inevitable and universal and then saying they are “postmodernist!”

              On the contrary, socialism and communism force people to work together for a common end, what I am saying is that it is not the system but human nature to be competitive and to seek dominance and personal benefit.
              in some cultures and in some circumstances then people can and will subordinate personal gain to common good. It takes a very strong motivator and a strong group culture to maintain that.

  • Tuesday box wine article.
    Putin always hated the soviet socialism. Russia is a capitalist nation. China is a capitalist nation intertwined with elements which really worked in the communist experiment. Communism was the best option to decouple the country from all British ties and local elites sabotaging the Chinese. China today has more than 500 specialized industrial areas where several free trade zones makes sense of all logistics involved in the Chinese economy. In 1990 I was in Shanghai to see first hand what would become the modern technology exported to the US and from the US to the rest. British people still talking about revolution, capitalism like it used to be in the 60s. Wake up. China and Russia are not on this page anymore.

  • The only thing an invisible hand is good for is picking your pockets.

    • Hah! good one, have to remember it.

  • Well, I am from the Caucasus. Today’s news of the old conflict flaming up immediately made me think it is a provocation by the CIA .
    Historically the people in this region are very much intermixed ethnically and religiously, and the culture is to just get along lovingly, and it absolutely took outside influence to stir this animosity up.
    In other words, it is not our custom to kill our neighbors.
    It is never wrong time to state “f*ck the CIA, may you rot in hell with all your empire’s pretend money.”

    • And now Ukraine is trying to push Georgia to open a second front against Russia. If we don’t have WWIII, it definitely won’t be the CIA’s fault!

      • NATO/US just will not fucking stop. are there any sane people left in Washington?

    • The problem with that though is that they rarely announce their true affiliations or what their real agenda is

      • Their affiliation is to each other and their agenda is to get along lovingly.
        Why would they have any other ?

  • CJ, I googled today 2 words “media+lies”, and this publication came up. Apparently in 1995 people still had expectations of honesty in public discourse.

    https://hbr.org/1995/05/why-the-news-is-not-the-truth

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