Smoke And Mirrors

December 18th, 2014 No comments

Do you ever get the impression that most mainstream news, when it comes to geopolitical events, is one giant smokescreen? Certainly I do. It seems clear to me that great efforts go into creating and sustaining a narrative which often hides other more important ones.

Case in point: The fracas between the US, Nato-controlled EU and Russia – over Ukraine – has all the markings of a propaganda play in my mind. An attempt to keep the world focused on the fear of the Russian bear. This is being played out by the US Congress passing increasingly draconian legislation to isolate and punish Russia for its “transgressions”.

But there are much bigger stories out there which don’t get the airtime, because they don’t follow the official narrative – which is one where the US dominates world events.

One such story, which is hugely significant in my opinion, is what’s going on with China and its mega-plans for increased economic clout. All this can be wrapped up in one phrase the “New Silk Road” – a mega project which excludes the USA.

Take the time to read Pepe Escobar’s in-depth essay on what’s happening “behind the curtain”:

Eurasian Integration vs The Empire of Chaos

 

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Hassan Nasrallah Explains The Dangers of Takfirism

December 17th, 2014 No comments

This is a very interesting video (turn on English subtitles) where Hezbollah Leader, Hassan Nasrallah, explains why Takfirism – as epitomised by Islamic State (ISIS) – is not only a danger to everyone, but also a danger to Islam itself.

It’s interesting because it shows the nature of internal  discussion on the Islamic State issue, and how respected representatives of Islam view it.

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Attempts to Isolate Russia Will Fail

December 12th, 2014 No comments

Contrary to mainstream media reports, Russia is not about to collapse or change its government – even though this is clearly the intention of the new “cold war” hostility that the US is imposing, via its NATO control of Europe.

What is happening instead is that a wedge is being driven between the EU and Russia, a wedge that is decidedly not in the eurozone’s interest. It remains to be seen if eurozone politicians will wake up in time to prevent a major downturn of their economies – but don’t hold your breath.

Meanwhile, out of sight of MSM reporting, Russia is going about the business of building new alliances, or strengthening old ones – as is the case of China and India. While the US administration may declare Russia is losing friends and influence, the truth is markedly different.

Michael Hudson comments on this reality in his article:

The New Cold War Policy Has Backfired

And Doug Casey thinks that now would be a good time to invest in Russia:

Time to Invest in Russia?

 

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Cryptography – Privacy’s Secret Weapon

December 6th, 2014 2 comments

Have you ever wondered why the government must know everything about us, but we cannot know anything about the government?

The government hides its secrets using various legal statutes like “The Official Secrets” act, or some such obfuscation. The entire apparatus of government is secretive. But we common “proles” must be an open book to our masters.

Take financial privacy. It doesn’t exist. The very fact of income tax makes it impossible to avoid declaring income, and makes it possible for the government to use all its legal tools to force an individual to give up all such privacy. If the income tax was abolished and replaced by just sales or other indirect taxes, then we would have no obligation to report our income, and hence have a lot more financial privacy – but this is anathema to the “powers that be”.

Yes, we certainly live in the surveillance state – where everyone is watched, except our “dear leaders”.

Julian Assange takes a closer look at this in his thoughtful essay:

Who Should Own The Internet: Living in a Surveillance Society

 

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The Future of Bitcoin

December 6th, 2014 1 comment

I’ve been hooked on Bitcoin since mid-2011, when I first purchased some. Since then my understanding has grown considerably and continues to grow as others expand on their own vision and understanding of what Bitcoin is, and what it could become.

For anyone who takes the time to look deeper into the significance of Bitcoin, it soon becomes apparent that we have a tiger by the tail in many respects - as its disruptive potential is massive.

Here’s an interesting take on Bitcoin, and why it matters:

10 Reasons Why Bitcoin is The Future

 

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Is The US Taking Over Ukraine?

December 5th, 2014 2 comments

We live in interesting and dangerous times. Nothing is what it appears to be. The mainstream press are simply mouthpieces for the government and “powers that be”. We are pawns in geopolitical games that we are never informed about – rather “stories” and spin is fed to us on a spoon.

What is happening in Ukraine is a case in point. The official narrative is that Russia is “aggressive” and must be punished for its alleged intrusion in the Ukraine’s affairs. But this is the opposite from what is actually happening.

The truth is, Russia is responding to US led intrusion into Ukraine. And now that intrusion (via IMF control) is becoming all too clear.

How The Ukrainian Government is Giving Away Citizenships So Foreigners Can Run The Country

 

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The US, Russia and Rising Geopolitical Tensions

December 2nd, 2014 No comments

Sometimes I think I’m living through a dream. I read stuff in the news that is just nonsense, but considered true nonetheless. I also read comments on important subjects, in papers like the UK Guardian, but have noticed a massive increase in trolling.

And I’m quite convinced governments are now heavily involved in “social media” manipulation – both on obvious social media websites, but also in the comments sections of all major online newspapers. The purpose, of course, is to sow confusion and doubt about anything and everything.

One such subject is the deteriorating situation between the US and Russia – and Russia and the European Union (at the behest of the USA of course). It’s hard to know exactly what this is all about, other than lies are being told, fears are being manipulated and people are starting to take sides.

I have a long-standing distrust of the US government. I believe that it considers itself the “ruler of the world” and does dastardly things (which never see the light of day) in order to maintain its hegemony.

So when I see someone like Vladimir Putin standing up to the US, my knee-jerk reaction is to cheer – not because I have any special liking or knowledge about the guy, but purely because he is not taking it “lying down”. And I guess this is important. When you have a major power that is a law unto itself, which is what the USA is, then it makes sense to seek some sort of counter-balance – a country or group of countries that are not afraid to stand up against such power.

The way things are going, I believe that China and Russia will fulfil that role – of keeping in check the unbridled power of the USA. And while no  one is saying that Russia and China are models of decency and freedom, there is still an important function to be provided here, where such countries can prevent the worst-case scenarios that can develop when just one country “rules the roost”.

For a taste of what this means, have a read of the following article – quoting words from Russia’s Foreign Minister, Sergei Lavrov, who I most definitely have some respect for.

Tensions Between The US and Russia Are Worse Than You Realise

 

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Anarchist Thought in Early China

November 20th, 2014 1 comment

We in the West see history through “Western” glasses. And this is natural enough I guess, because we have all been educated that way. But there is much to be learned by looking at the history of other civilisations. And there could be particular benefit in looking at historical thought in ancient China.

China is a rising power. No one disputes that. Right now, that power is primarily economic and while the US uses its military muscle to reach its objectives, the Chinese are following a different path.

There is also much confusion about China, with many people still believing it to be “Communist”. As someone who has lived in China and travelled there many times, I can assure you this is not the case. In fact, I would venture to say that the West is more “communist”, in the sense that socialism is a variant on communism.

No, China is definitely not communist, but a hybrid of one-party-state rule and capitalism on steroids. Sure, there is the crony capitalism as practiced by the Communist Party elite, but there is also a surge in individual enterprise, which is what drives China’s economic growth.

What I find even more interesting is some of the major contributions to philosophical thought that predate modern China’s experiment with communism.

Many westerners are familiar with Confucius, the philosopher-bureaucrat who had a massive impact on early China. In fact, in latter day China, where many people flounder around looking for some philosophical/idealogical guidance other than communism, Confucius is experiencing something of a “come back”.

But there is another much more interesting ancient Chinese philosopher - Lao Tzu. In fact, he could be the world’s first libertarian intellectual, something that Murray Rothbard, founder of modern libertarianism, clearly recognised in his article quoted below.

Now, if the Chinese were to “rediscover” Lao Tzu and “rehabilitate” his thought, just imagine what an impact that could have on this world.

The Ancient Chinese Libertarian Tradition

 

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Hitler is Everywhere

November 18th, 2014 No comments

This is an early Jon Stewart video (2005) that has not dated at all. It’s still very funny and pertinent.

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Can China Contain America?

November 18th, 2014 No comments

If you read the title of this post correctly, you may have thought, “Hang on a minute, shouldn’t it say ‘Can America Contain China?’, for that’s the real issue here.” And certainly that is the issue, if we are to believe what we are told – that China represents a threat to the world.

You see, when you dig deeper into US foreign policy, it’s not really the Middle East that the US sees as threatening it, but China. And that’s what Obama’s “Pivot to Asia” is all about.

But if we take off our “western-tinted sunglasses” for a moment, and ask the serious question – “Who is the real threat in this world?” – we may come to a different conclusion, as John V Walsh has done in his essay:

Can China Contain America?

Addendum: This is worth a read too…

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