Lincoln or Lee? Which Was The Biggest Criminal?
Some person just called President Abraham Lincoln a mass murderer.
Indeed, an elderly Southern gentleman had ventured that President Lincoln, not General Lee, murdered civilians, a point even a Court historian and a Lincoln idolater like Doris Kearns Goodwin would concede.
Here are some uncommon but correct answers to some common questions.
If asked to “Name one problem that led to the Civil War,” you may legitimately reply: “States’ rights.”
If asked to “Name the war between the North and the South,” you may call it, “the War between the States.”
Your reply would be perfectly proper if you chose to name “economic reasons” as one of the problems that led to the Civil War.
Not even the government will deny that the 1861 Morrill tariff was one cause of the War of Northern Aggression. Lincoln, a protectionist, was expected to enforce the tariff with calamitous consequences to the “the import-dependent South, which was paying [at the time] as much as 80 percent of the tariff.”
It’s fair to assume that the civics naturalization test (I took it) was not written by pro-South historians. Yet even they did not conceal some immutable truths about the War of Northern Aggression – truths banished from most American History books.
And from Fox News.
There, you must tolerate progressive Republicans, like John Daniel Davidson of the Federalist, warning about the dangers of identity politics in a majority-white country like the US. (Davidson should try out identity politics in a minority white country like my birthplace, South Africa, where the lives of white farmers are forfeit.) Another Federalist editor seen on Fox is Molly Hemingway. She has vaporized about the merits of “taking down Confederate statues.” If memory serves, that was a position the oracular Chucky Krauthammer was willing to dignify.
In all, Lincoln’s violent, unconstitutional revolution took the lives of 620,000 individuals, including 50,000 Southern civilians, white and black. It maimed thousands, and brought about “the near destruction of 40 percent of the nation’s economy.”
While “in the North a few unfortunate exceptions marred the general wartime boom,” chronicled historian William Miller, “[t]he south as a whole was impoverished. At the end of the war, the boys in blue went home at government expense with about $235 apiece in their pockets.” “[S]ome of Lee’s soldiers had to ask for handouts on the road home, with nothing to exchange for bread save the unwelcome news of Appomattox.”
Many years hence, Americans look upon the terrible forces unleashed by Lincoln as cathartic, glorious events. However, “The costs of an action cannot be dismissed as irrelevant to morality,” noted Mises Institute scholar David Gordon, in Secession, State & Liberty.
At his most savage, General William Tecumseh Sherman waged “total war” on civilians and did not conceal his intent to so do. On commencing his march through Georgia, in September 1864, Sherman had vowed “to demonstrate the vulnerability of the South and make its inhabitants feel that war and individual ruin [were] synonymous terms.” To follow was an admission (of sorts) to war crimes: “The amount of plundering, burning, and stealing done by our own army makes me ashamed of it.”
“For Sherman’s troops sacked and razed entire cities and communities“:
“Sherman’s troops exhumed graves to loot the corpses. Sherman’s troops tore up little girls’ dolls and nailed family pets to doors. Sherman’s troops left countless civilians – including the slaves they were supposedly liberating – without food or shelter. Sherman ransomed civilians to armies in the area, threatening to execute them or burn their homes if they did not comply. Sherman had a few contemplative moments and was always careful to maintain plausible deniability, but he knew what was happening and let it happen.“
Here’s the brass tacks (via William Miller, Yankee sympathizer) about Lincoln’s brutality and the extent to which the North upended life in the South:
“Confederate losses were overwhelmingly greater, representing a fifth of the productive part of the Confederacy’s white male population. Thousands more died of exposure, epidemics, and sheer starvation after the war, while many survivors, aside from the sick and the maimed, bore the scars of wartime and most war malnutrition and exhaustion all the rest of their lives.”
The South sustained direct damage as the war was fought, for the most, on its soil.
“Land, buildings, and equipment, especially of slaveless farmers … lay in ruins. Factories … were simply forsaken.” “Poor white and planter were left little better than ex-slave. … [A]n every-day sight [was] that of women and children, most of whom were formerly in good circumstances, begging for bread from door to door. In the destruction of southern life few suffered more than the ex-slaves.” By estimations cited in Miller’s A New History of the United States, “a third of the Negroes died” in their freemen, informal, “contraband camps,” from “the elements, epidemics, and crime.”
“The weakening of purpose, morale, and aspiration among the survivors was depressing enough to make many envy the dead,” laments White, noting that “rebel losses in youth and talent were much greater than the devastating total of human losses itself.”
“The men in blue,” said one Southerner late in 1865, “destroyed everything which the most infernal Yankee ingenuity could devise means to destroy: hands, hearts, fire, gunpowder, and behind everything the spirit of hell, were the agencies which they used.”
Still, despite having just fought a civil war, there was a greater feeling of fellowship among our countrymen then than there is today.
Struck by how achingly sad the South was, a northern observer, on a visit to New Orleans in 1873, cried out with great anguish: “These faces, these faces, one sees them everywhere; on the streets, at the theater, in the salon, in the cars; and pauses for a moment struck with the expression of entire despair.”
Today’s America lectures and hectors the world about invading Arab leaders for “killing their own people.” What did the sixteenth American president do if not kill his own people?
Yes, “Emerson’s ‘best civilization’ was about to be ‘extended over the whole country’ with a vengeance.”
Of this, Adolf Hitler wholly approved.
CNN’s Brooke Baldwin will be shocked—OMG! kind of shocked—to know that in his Mein Kampf, Hitler “expressed both his support for Lincoln’s war and his unwavering opposition to the cause of states’ rights and political decentralization.”
Hitler vowed that in Germany as well, he and his National Socialists “would eliminate states’ rights altogether,” political decentralization being the greatest obstacle for all dictators.
In a word, Ms. Baldwin, Hitler liked Abe Lincoln’s impetus and for good reason.
Your guest was right. “Confederate generals, despite hearing news of death and destruction from home, strictly enforced orders protecting the person and property of Northern civilians.”
WHAT REALLY HAPPENED TO THE WORLD TRADE TOWERS ON 9-11?
The link below takes you to a source of truth concerning what really happened to the WTC towers on 9-11-2001. The evidence is overwhelming that the whole 9-11 scenario was the result of an extensive conspiracy, not by a few Muslims with box cutters, but by a lot of people at high levels inside the U.S. Government (the Beast System).
It is interesting enough to learn the scientific physics and principles of how the towers were brought down. However, the bottom line that you should consider is the astounding truth that the U.S. Government is an evil organization that not only lies to Americans, it actually kills them. The mass media organizations are equally guilty of lying to us. Truth about 9-11, and justice, will never be forthcoming from appealing to agencies within the government to investigate 9-11. Criminals will never willingly investigate and expose themselves. All the agencies of government are criminal in nature. You should investigate and learn truth for yourself because you need to know who you can trust … and who you should NEVER trust. But don’t expect satisfaction from the government.
Finally, please consider the fact that Americans in general have not enough integrity or interest in truth to pursue and make a public issue of that horrible criminal act that caused 9-11 as well as many other atrocities enacted by the U.S. Government. Americans in general prefer to ignore truth if it disturbs their preferred view of life in America. They prefer convenient lies to give them a false sense of security and comfort. They have not the love of truth.
10. And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved.
11. And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie:
12. That they all might be judged who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.
2 Thess. 2:10-12
And, of course, the end result is that evil people in positions of power are able to do anything they want, destroy anything they want, kill anyone they want, and tell as many lies as they want … and get away with it. Thus, instead of a real condition of safety and comfort, the American people are losing everything that makes life worthwhile.
The link below is just one exposure of the Beast System. There are many more.
Americans are living in, and worshiping, a pagan religious and political system that rejects God and truth. The churches are teaching a form of paganism instead of true Christianity. By accepting the conventional U.S. system, Americans are destroying themselves. The 9-11 false flag event, and the continuing wars being waged by using 9-11 as an excuse, is prime evidence of what I have said.
Oil Price Forecasts During Trump Presidency
STEVE AUSTIN | 2016/11/30
We’re on a roll when it comes to accurately predicting major geopolitical events and their impact on oil prices. In our article titled Takeover of Oil by Militias” published in 2012, we successfully anticipated that Islamic militants (ISIS) would use oil revenues to fund the formation of their own theocracy.
In 2013, in our article titled “OPEC and oil prices – is the story over” we, rightly, predicted that Saudi Arabia’s failure in ensuring that OPEC countries adhered to the quota system as well as the reference prices would cause the cartel to crumble and become irrelevant. Also the same year, by mathematically analyzing the evolution of oil prices, we predicted high volatility ahead. As it turned out, oil prices plunged 40% a few months later. Clinchingly, adept at it, we also surmised that a disagreement between Russia and Saudi Arabia over a planned gas pipeline would lead to the Syrian civil war, which we also detailed in later articles.
In May 2015, while crude oil was hovering at $50 from the previous high of $115 in June, we warned our readers that it would plummet further. Within a few months oil prices fell to the $20s.
See, with that track record, you may pardon us for bragging. Anyway, when it comes to oil prices, the oil industry and geopolitics, here are 9 predictions for the next 4 years regarding the geopolitics of oil under President Trump.
1. Lower oil prices
Donald Trump managed to win the presidency in spite of spending only half as much as contender Hillary Clinton. In other words, despite popular belief that “money buys votes” he is on the saddle now and got there for less. In business terms and like the true businessman that he is, Donald Trump won by delivering the goods for much cheaper than the competition. This philosophy which he brings along to the White House will have tremendous repercussions on oil price and the energy industry.
The moot point is that Trump is pro-drilling. As a matter of fact, there are many more untapped shale pockets waiting to be explored in the US. In fact, many of those sites lie in places already on the fracking map like Oklahoma, North Dakota and Texas. That should make things easy. After all, to put things in perspective, it was hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling that put the US firmly on the path towards energy security. Further, Trump may also end the moratorium on drilling in Alaska, while easing oil exploration in the Southeastern Outer Continental Shelf (OCS).
Trump’s ‘America First’ plan will reverberate on the energy corridors too. With the House now on his side, nothing stands in the way of Trump delivering on his promise to run the United States of America like an efficient, competitive business. And all that new oil barreling down into an already oversupplied market means low oil prices. Crude oil which fuels and lubricates the proverbial gear train of the American economy is guaranteed to come down and stay low in terms of price.
2. Keystone XL pipeline
A major objective on Trump’s agenda, construction of the Keystone ‘XL’ pipeline will finally see the light of the day in the coming months. Before delving further, what’s Keystone XL pipeline, anyway?
Keystone XL is actually the fourth phase of the Keystone project that began in 2005. The proposed 1,180 mile long pipeline will carry about 830,000 barrels of oil per day from Alberta, Canada to Steele City, Nebraska. Indeed, the Keystone pipeline already transports oil from Canada and the XL line would have increased the inflow of oil.
In keeping with the philosophy of running a business efficiently, the XL pipeline will replace crude oil transportation by train – an expensive, inefficient and accident-prone operation – with, well, a pipeline – an alternative both cheaper and more ecological if one really cares to see beyond party line rhetoric. Yet, the pipeline is still a chimera. So what’s causing the massive opposition to the Keystone XL project? Well, President Obama put the project on hold as the pipeline would have passed along fragile ecosystems. Also environmentalists argue that extraction of oil from oil sands (like in Alberta) consumes more energy and causes more contamination to the environment than conventional drilling.
The election has shifted everything. Easily and quite visibly, Donald Trump will remove the roadblocks on the path of the Keystone XL project. TransCanada, the company behind the pipeline is going to reapply for permits. So, with the presidential permit, the oil will cruise along to enrich the US.
Effectively, the pipeline will flood the US market with cheap Canadian crude oil, to the delight of US refiners and dismay of US producers who will see the price of WTI oil – and their profits – come down. According to the US State Department, the proposed project could generate 42,000 jobs spread over a period of two years. But after the pipeline is built, any net long-term job growth will likely be north of the Canadian border as US producers profits – and payroll – shrink.
One benefit of the pipeline is, of course, security. By shifting crude imports to our friendly Canadian neighbors to the North and away from Gulf states, the fewer dollars end up funding the export of Islam fundamentalism. Thanks to the pipeline, import of crude from Gulf States – and the financial influence of Gulf States, notably Saudi Arabia on US politicians – will be reduced as well. More the oil, lower the prices.
3. Divided oil industry
To sum up, Trump’s presidency will increase contentions in the oil industry because some stand to win and others stand to lose. It’s a race out there, we tell you.
The winners are refiners and consumers as the focus shifts to a pro-infrastructure revolution. Yes, we’ll explain.
The refineries in the US, to a large extent, have failed to catch up with the remarkable surge in domestic oil production. Lack of pipelines to transport crude to the refineries is costing the country and how.
Production of crude oil has risen from 5.6 million barrels per day in 2011 to 9.4 million barrels a day in 2015. Our own forecast at oil-price.net for 2016 is 8.8 million barrels per day. Much of the domestic oil production coming from low permeability formations in Bakken, Eagle Ford and Permian Basin are Light Tight Oil (LTO). Yet, most of the refineries are calibrated to process the imported medium to heavier crude. Technically, it’s possible to recalibrate the refining process to process light crude. Hence, if some onerous tasks in the infrastructure are removed, the consumers stand to gain.
Now, let’s look at the loser’s side of this argument. Unfortunately, it’s the oil producers. Fracking is an expensive process. In spite of advances in technology and increase in the number of wells, production costs are still humongous. Hence, low oil prices will render many fracking operations nonviable. True, a Republican house may attempt to re-open Federal land to oil exploration. However, it is unlikely that a “rush for crude” will take place like in 2013 when crude oil prices ruled the roost.
Here’s another way to look at it: refiners are old money and frackers are new money. Trump, it has to be said, is ferociously old money. Under his presidency, old money will most always wins. Wait and watch.
4. Fast changing geopolitical alliances
Putin likes Trump’s style of running business. Like Trump, Putin is an ex CEO who runs his country like one. Putin was one of the firsts to congratulate Trump on his massive win. Indeed, during his campaign Trump praised Putin’s strong stance in fighting ISIS. For the first time, a slavic Slovene-born First Lady will be at the White House. Whether she will endeavor to redecorate the place with traditional Russian Babushka dolls remains to be seen. A Russian touch to the American edifice of Democracy, no doubt. More importantly, Melania Trump has played an active role in managing Trump’s businesses, and it is reasonable to expect that she will play an active political role, here and abroad, as First Lady. Indeed, there are many aspects in which Trump and Putin see eye-to-eye.
This may be surprising as Russia has been America’s arch-enemy since the end of WW2, a period spanning 70 years. Bilateral relations between the countries have curdled in recent times with huge open disagreements over Syria. The US has called out Russia’s role in Ukraine, while Russia laughed at the US by granting asylum to whistleblower, Edward Snowden.
Imagine, then, the surprise in seeing how fast geopolitical alliances change this day. The Brits leaving the EU; Turkey, NATO’s second most powerful member power, inking defense and intelligence deals with Russia; the US and Europe arming Al-Qaeda styled militias against a secular regime in Syria. Turkey buying crude oil from (gasp!) ISIS.
Brace yourself, the world is in turmoil. We’ll see friends and foes of yesteryears interchange in the name of business and necessity. And crude oil of course.
5. New oil pipelines to Europe
Essentially, the Syrian war was caused by two pipelines.
The Persian Gulf has the world’s largest known Natural gas reserves. The problem is that part of the site belongs to Qatar and the other part lies in Iran. Qatar’s part is called North Field, while Iran’s is called North Pars. The Syrian war is a fight over access to this Natural gas.
The proposed Qatar-Turkey pipeline, running through Syria would have affected Russia’s role as a supplier of natural gas. Currently a quarter of Europe’s gas is supplied by Russia’s Gasprom for heating, cooking and other purposes. Not surprisingly, Russians desire to maintain their market share. Europe wants to reduce this dependency as Russia had cut-off gas supplies in 2009 over Ukraine gas disputes. The US supports Europe’s move on this pipeline. Russia, naturally, isn’t pleased. So Syria, which is an ally of Russia, rejected the pipeline. Instead, Syria gave impetus to the Iran-Iraq-Syria pipeline that would have carried gas to Europe bypassing Qatar. Syria thus earned the wrath of Qatar, Turkey, and not to mention the US too.
When the gamble is over billions of dollars and a continent’s energy dependency, can the means be underestimated? With Trump warming up to Putin, very little stands in the way of the new Russia – Turkey (TurkStream) pipeline transporting natural gas under the Black Sea. The pipeline will help Russia’s Gazprom to bypass Ukraine as a transit point. In the wake of recent agreements on discounted gas prices, it remains to be seen how Russia wrestles to profit from the pipeline. Yet, one thing is clear. Once this pipeline is built, natural gas tankers from Qatar transiting through the Suez canal will no longer be financially viable – safe for a steep discount.
6. Europe’s leadership decline
Now that we have explained Trump’s relation with Putin, let’s look at the ramifications for Europe. Well, with Putin’s energy empire set to tighten its grip on Europe under Trump’s presidency, Europe stands to lose. After all, Europe has grown accustomed for the last 70 years to the US taxpayer footing part of its defense bill and that too is about to change. Trump has criticized the low defense spending of NATO’s European members during his campaign. He has stated that he would abandon US allies in Europe if they did not spend more on defense. It’s nothing short of an epic shift.
US-Europe relations will change as well because EU bureaucrats and the American CEO will find it harder to work together. The reasons are pretty obvious as both compete with one another in most markets. Now given Trump’s promise of tariffs, export-based economies such as Germany face headwind ahead. Add to this higher military expenditure to stem the migrant crisis and Europe stands to lose influence on the international stage.
7. Emerging markets
Emerging market ETFs have stumbled in the wake of Trump’s election. Not for want of reasons, of course.
Open trades have helped the manufacturing sector in China, India and other emerging markets resulting in a vibrant middle class, which, in turn, also consumed the goods. Trump, meanwhile, is all for closing those trading rules. Consequently export oriented markets like South Korea and Taiwan will see slower growth in the long term.
A tight monetary policy with a strong dollar and increase in interest rates will add to the struggle of emerging markets. In truth, the promise of tariffs on Chinese goods, the prospect of lower oil prices, all are detrimental to the outlook of emerging markets. Oil exporting countries like Venezuela that depend on oil revenues for much of their state expenditures will gasp for breath with low oil prices. Low demand, especially in China, is a bad bargain not only for the Asian giant but also other emerging economies.
On the other side of the coin, it has to be said, oil importing countries like India and Indonesia stand to gain.
8. Saudi Arabia
The monarchy of Saudi Arabia was created thanks to Britain’s support for Ikhwan wahhabi militias in the 1920s. Boasting an extremist ideology, Ikhwan militias scorned modernization and western ways of life. A 1920s version of ISIS, the Ikhwan bargained violence for land to establish a theocracy. Any opposition was murdered with no mercy. Nearly 100 years later, the Saudi Kingdom is still ruled by the same family but its responsibility in exporting terrorism throughout the world prompts many to re-evaluate the creation of Saudi Arabia.
Once prospering on oil exports, the Kingdom, having destroyed OPEC out of sheer arrogance, is quickly approaching the edge of insolvency. In a way, Saudi Arabia embodies procrastination: having had over 100 years to diversify its economy but no self-discipline to do so, only a miracle can now save the very pious nation; and Trump surely won’t make that happen.
Already, Saudi Prince Al- Waleed bin Talal who once called Trump a disgrace and urged him to withdraw from the Presidential race is praising his leadership: “things are very okay right now with Mr. Trump, all the skirmishes and all the misunderstandings will be soon left behind.”
No country can survive forever with a one-trick pony show and Saudi Arabia is no different. To any President CEO, Saudi Arabia is a poorly run business, with bad business practices. Well, at the rate Saudi Arabia is spending its foreign reserves, the Kingdom will run out of cash within the next four years. That is, before the end of Trump presidency. So, it will most certainly be Trump who will usher in a new leadership re-arrangement in Saudi Arabia – to put it rather mildly. On it, with over 15,000 royals there will be no lack of US-friendly contenders to the Saudi throne.
While the end of Saudi Arabia is in the cards and sooner than you might think, one can only guess the ways by which it will happen. Surely ISIS fighters displaced from Syria and Iraq should not be allowed north towards Europe. Already Russian forces have employed the military tactic of “funneling” ISIS south – forcing enemy troops towards a direction instead of destroying them outright. So far it has worked for Russia and if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.
9. Middle East influence reversal
Trump’s promise to disallow Middle-East’s influence and bribery on the US political scene gained him huge popular support. As he follows suit on his promise, things are about to change in DC. Whereas previous administrations welcomed Gulf money in Washington, cash payments to influence policy decisions will stop under Trump.
With a new US President who has vowed to fight bribery and corruption from the Middle-East, things are about to get competitive in terms of oil and gas too. Undoubtedly, foreign policy with regards to the Middle-East is going to undergo a paradigm shift and Middle-Eastern countries will face political isolation as more oil in the US will reduce – and hopefully revert – the ludicrous power of OPEC countries to dictate terms.
Irrevocably, the energy sector in the US is off to a fresh start with Trump as the harbinger of a new age.
In tandem with oil and gas, you’ll see coal making a sort of return to the energy scene. By all likelihood, President Obama’s Clean Power Plan to reduce climate change will be thrown out the window. The moratorium on new leases for coal on Federal Lands will be lifted. The coal fired power plants are going to get a new lease of life as Trump is all for fossil fuels. That said the subsidies for renewable could continue as the question is about jobs in the US. If not, some renewables such as solar have come down so much in price recently that they may still be a viable alternative to coal – sans subsidies.
On and on, Shale oil boom changed the shape of oil production in the US. Trump’s Presidency, with more areas opened for exploration, could mean more supply of oil and gas. When our nine predictions come true, we’ll remind you.
European Nations Such As Sweden And Denmark Are “Eradicating Cash”
By Michael Snyder –
16. And he causes all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark in their right hand, or in their foreheads:
17. And that no man might buy or sell, except he that has the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name. Revelation 13: 16-17
(Note: It seems that most people today have no aversion to that greatly feared thing that has worried generations of Bible readers to this day … “the mark of the Beast.” Along with growing ignorance about God and Holy Scripture we see escalating ignorance about basic values like privacy. Modern man is embracing the Mark of the Beast, gladly relinquishing his economic and social life through social media (Facebook) and cashless transactions (credit cards) to be monitored and handled by government agencies. The tidal wave of stupidity and godlessness has overtaken Europe and is in the process of overtaking America. What kind of mental illness has infected modern man to make him so irresponsible as to relinquish control of his basic life functions to be controlled by government? -ed.)
Did you know that 95 percent of all retail sales in Sweden are cashless? And did you know that the government of Denmark has a stated goal of “eradicating cash” by the year 2030? All over the world, we are seeing a relentless march toward a cashless society, and nowhere is this more true than in northern Europe. In Sweden, hundreds of bank branches no longer accept or dispense cash, and thousands of ATM machines have been permanently removed.
At this point, bills and coins only account for just 2 percent of the Swedish economy, and many stores no longer take cash at all. The notion of a truly “cashless society” was once considered to be science fiction, but now we are being told that it is “inevitable”, and authorities insist that it will enable them to thwart criminals, terrorists, drug runners, money launderers and tax evaders. But what will we give up in the process?
In Sweden, the transition to a cashless society is being enthusiastically embraced. The following is an excerpt from a New York Times article that was published on Saturday…
Parishioners text tithes to their churches. Homeless street vendors carry mobile credit-card readers. Even the Abba Museum, despite being a shrine to the 1970s pop group that wrote “Money, Money, Money,” considers cash so last-century that it does not accept bills and coins.
Few places are tilting toward a cashless future as quickly as Sweden, which has become hooked on the convenience of paying by app and plastic.
To me, giving money in church electronically seems so bizarre. But it is starting to happen here in the United States, and in Sweden some churches collect most of their tithes and offerings this way…
During a recent Sunday service, the church’s bank account number was projected onto a large screen. Worshipers pulled out cellphones and tithed through an app called Swish, a payment system set up by Sweden’s biggest banks that is fast becoming a rival to cards.
Other congregants lined up at a special “Kollektomat” card machine, where they could transfer funds to various church operations. Last year, out of 20 million kronor in tithes collected, more than 85 percent came in by card or digital payment.
And of course it isn’t just Sweden that is rapidly transitioning to a cashless society. Over in Denmark, government officials have a goal “to completely do away with paper money” by the year 2030…
Sweden is not the only country interested in eradicating cash. Its neighbor, Denmark, is also making great strides to lessen the circulation of banknotes in the country.
Two decades ago, roughly 80 percent of Danish citizens relied on hard cash while shopping. Fast forward to today, that figure has dropped dramatically to 25 percent.
“We’re interested in getting rid of cash,” said Matas IT Director Thomas Grane. “The handling, security and everything else is expensive; so, definitely we want to push digital payments, and that’s of course why we introduced mobile payments to help this process.”
Eventually, establishments may soon have the right to reject cash- a practice that is common in Sweden. Government officials have set a 2030 deadline to completely do away with paper money.
Could you imagine a world where you couldn’t use cash for anything?
This is the direction things are going – especially in Europe.
As I have written about previously, cash transactions of more than 2,500 euros have already been banned in Spain, and France and Italy have both banned all cash transactions of more than 1,000 euros.
Little by little, cash is being eradicated, and what we have seen so far is just the beginning. 417 billion cashless transactions were conducted in 2014, and the final number for 2015 is projected to be much higher.
Banks like this change, because it enables them to make more money due to the fees that they collect from credit cards and debit cards. And governments like this change because electronic payments enable them to watch, track and monitor what we are all doing much more easily.
These days, very rarely does anyone object to what is happening. Instead, most of us just seem to accept that this change is “inevitable”, and we are being assured that it will be for the better. And no matter where in the world you go, the propaganda seems to be the same. For example, the following comes from an Australian news source…
AND so we prepare to turn the page to fresh year — 2016, a watershed year in which Australia will accelerate towards becoming a genuine cashless society.
The cashless society will be a new world free of $1 and $2 coins, or $5 or $10 bank notes. A new world in which all commercial transactions, from buying an i-pad or a hamburger to playing the poker machines, purchasing a newspaper, paying household bills or picking up the dry-cleaning, will be paid for electronically.
And in that same article the readers are told that Australia will likely be “a fully cashless society” by 2022…
Research by Westpac Bank predicts Australia will be a fully cashless society by 2022 — just six years away. Already half of all commercial payments are now made electronically.
Even in some of the poorest areas on the entire globe we are seeing a move toward a cashless society. In 2015, banks in India made major progress on this front, and income tax rebates are being considered by the government as an incentive “to encourage people to move away from cash transactions”.
Would a truly cashless society reduce crime and make all of our lives much more efficient?
And what would we have to give up?
To me, America is supposed to be a place where we can go where we want and do what we want without the government constantly monitoring us. If people choose to use cashless forms of payment that is one thing, but if we are all required to go to such a system I fear that it could result in the loss of tremendous amounts of freedom and liberty.
And it is all too easy to imagine a world where a government-sponsored form of “identification” would be required to use any form of electronic payment. This would give the government complete control over who could use “the system” and who could not. The potential for various forms of coercion and tyranny in such a scenario is obvious.
What would you do if you could not buy, sell, get a job or open a bank account without proper “identification” someday? What you simply give in to whatever the government was demanding of you at the time even if it went against your fundamental beliefs?
That is certainly something to think about.
Many will cheer as the world makes a rapid transition to a cashless society, but I will not. I believe that a truly cashless system would open the door for great evil, and I don’t want any part of it.
What about you?
A bureaucrat is the most despicable of men though he is needed as vultures are needed … but one hardly admires vultures whom bureaucrats so strangely resemble.
I have yet to meet a bureaucrat who was not petty, dull, almost witless, crafty or stupid, an oppressor or a thief, a holder of little authority in which he delights, as a boy delights in possessing a vicious dog. Who can trust such creatures?”
— Marcus Tullius Cicero, (106-43 B.C.) Roman statesman, Philospher, Orator
JUDAISM -VS- ISLAM
Understanding Organizational Stupidity
(NOTE: I have believed most my life that organizations tend to breed stupidity. They also seem to attract unintelligent people. Personally, I avoid organizations. I’ve observed that a committee of people is collectively less intelligent than any one of the members alone. It is said that a camel is the result of a committee attempting to build a horse.
Possibly this it is one reason Christ taught us to be “holy” [a term that means to be separate]. In the New Testament the word “saint” is the same Greek word, thus a “saint” is one who is separate. Also, Moses taught us: “You shall not follow a multitude to do evil; neither shall you speak in a cause to conform after many to pervert judgment. – Ex. 23:2). Thus it appears that Biblical theology would have us be very cautious about corporate and organizational hierarchy … especially in light of the fact that most organizations are led by people who are ignorant of Biblical principles.
The following article speaks primarily to corporate organizational stupidity. Please notice that the principles particularly apply to religious, political, and military … all of which have proven to breed arrogance, prejudice, and stupidity.
Hierarchical organizations and societies eventually die at their own hands [witness the empires of history. -ed)
Why are we being so stupid?
What do I mean when I use the term stupid? I do not mean it as a term of abuse but as a precise, if unflattering, diagnosis.
Why are we (as a country) being so stupid? This question has puzzled me for some time. It appears that the problem of stupidity is quite pervasive: look at any large human organization, and you will find that it is ruled by stupidity. I was not the first to stumble across the conjecture that the intelligence of a hierarchically organized group of people is inversely proportional to its size, but so far the mechanism that makes it so has eluded me. Clearly, there is something amiss with hierarchically organized groups, something that causes all of them to eventually collapse, but what exactly is it?
I discovered that vast hierarchies do not occur in nature, which is anarchic and self-organizing, with no chains of command and no entities in supreme command. I discovered that anarchic organizations can go on forever while hierarchical ones inevitably end in collapse. I examined some of the recent breakthroughs in complexity theory, which uncovered the laws governing the different scaling factors in natural (anarchically organized, efficient, stable) systems and unnatural (hierarchically organized, inefficient, collapse-prone) ones.
But nowhere did I find a principled, rigorous explanation for the fatal flaw embedded in the very nature of hierarchical systems. I did have a very strong hunch, though, backed by much anecdotal evidence, that it comes down to stupidity. In anarchic societies whose members cooperate freely, intelligence is additive; in hierarchical organizations structured around a chain of command, intelligence is subtractive. The lowest grunts or peons are expected to carry out orders unquestioningly. Their critical faculties are 100% impaired; if not, they are subjected to disciplinary action. The supreme chief executive officer may be of moderately impaired intelligence, since it is indicative of a significant character flaw to want such a job in the first place. (Only nut cases want to be president.) But beyond that, the supreme leader must act in such a way as to keep the grunts and peons in line, resulting in further intellectual impairment, which is compounded across all of the intervening ranks, with each link in the chain of command contributing a bit of its own stupidity to the organizational stupidity stack.
I never ascended the ranks of middle management. To me hierarchy = stupidity in an apparent, palpable way. But in explaining to others why this must be so, I had so far been unable to go beyond speaking in generalities and telling stories.
And so I was happy when I recently came across an article which goes beyond such hand-waving analysis and answers this question with some precision. Mats Alvesson and André Spicer, writing in Journal of Management Studies (49:7 November 2012) present A Stupidity-Based Theory of Organizations in which they define a key term: functional stupidity. It is functional in that it is required in order for hierarchically structured organizations to avoid disintegration or, at the very least, to function without a great deal of internal friction. It is stupid in that it is a form intellectual impairment: Functional stupidity refers to an absence of reflexivity, a refusal to use intellectual capacities in other than myopic ways, and avoidance of justifications. Alvesson and Spicer go on to define the various forms of stupidity management that repress or marginalize doubt, and block communicative action, and to diagram the information flows which are instrumental to generating and maintaining sufficient levels of stupidity within organizations. Although the authors’ analysis is limited in scope to corporate entities, I believe that it extends quite naturally to other hierarchically organized bureaucratic systems, such as governments.
The authors point out that there is a vast body of research on the irrationality of organizations and the limits to organizational intelligence stemming from unconscious elements, group-think, and rigid adherence to wishful thinking. There is also no shortage of research into organizational ignorance which explores the mechanisms behind bounded-rationality, skilled incompetence, garbage-can decision making, foolishness, mindlessness, and (denied) ignorance. But what they are getting at is qualitatively different from such run-of-the-mill stupidity. Functional stupidity is neither delusional nor irrational nor ignorant: organizations restrict smartness in rational and informed ways which serve explicit organizational interests. It is, if you will, a sort of enlightened stupidity:
Functional stupidity is organizationally-supported lack of reflexivity, substantive reasoning, and justification (my italics). It entails a refusal to use intellectual resources outside a narrow and safe terrain. It can provide a sense of certainty that allows organizations to function smoothly. This can save the organization and its members from the frictions provoked by doubt and reflection.
Functional stupidity contributes to maintaining and strengthening organizational order. It can also motivate people, help them to cultivate their careers, and subordinate them to socially acceptable forms of management and leadership. Such positive outcomes can further reinforce functional stupidity.
The terms I italicized are important, so let’s define each one:
Reflexivity refers to the ability and willingness to question rules, routines and norms rather than follow them unquestioningly. Is your corporation acting morally? Well it doesn’t matter, because what is right in the corporation is what the guy above you wants from you. The effects of this attitude tend to get amplified as information travels (or, in this case, fails to travel) down the chain of command: your immediate superior might be a corrupt bastard, but your supreme leader cannot possibly be a war criminal.
Justification refers to the ability and willingness to offer reasons and explanations for one’s own actions, and to assess the sincerity, legitimacy, and truthfulness of reasons and explanations offered by others. In an open society that has freedom of expression, we justify our actions in order to gain the cooperation of others, while in organizational settings we can simply issue orders, and the only justification ever needed is because the boss-man said so.
Substantive reasoning refers to the ability and willingness to go beyond the small set of concerns that are defined by a specific organizational, professional, or work logic. For example, economists tend to compress a wide range of phenomena into a few numbers, not bothering to think what these numbers actually represent. Organizational and professional settings discourage people from straying from the confines of their specializations and job descriptions, in essence reducing their cognitive abilities to those of idiot-savants.
Functional stupidity can arise spontaneously, because there are many subjective factors which motivate people within organizations to narrow their thinking to the point of achieving it. A certain amount of closed-mindedness can be helpful in furthering your career. It helps you present yourself as a reliable organizational person … one who would never even question the validity of the organizational or occupational paradigm, never mind stray from it. At the other extreme, your refusal to stray beyond a narrow focus may be prompted by feelings of anxiety, insecurity, and fear of jeopardizing your position. And while, just as you would expect, functional stupidity produces negative outcomes for the organization as a whole, it provides for smooth social functioning within the organization itself by suppressing dangerous or uncomfortable questions and by avoiding the awkwardness of calling into question the judgment of your superiors.
But such subjective factors are dwarfed by certain stupidity-generating features of organizations. At their highest level, organizations tend to focus on purely symbolic issues such as strong corporate cultures and identities, corporate branding, and charismatic leadership. Corporate (and other) leaders try to project an identical internal and external image of the organization, which may have little to do with reality. This is only possible through stupidity management: the process by which various actors (including managers and senior executives as well as external figures such as consultants, business gurus, and marketers) exercise power to block communication. The result is that adherence to managerial edicts is encouraged, and criticism or reflection on them is discouraged.
As the people within the organization internalize this message, they begin to engage in stupidity self-management: they cut short their internal conversations, refusing to ask themselves troubling questions, and focusing instead on a positive, coherent view of their environment and their role within it. But stupidity self-management can also fail when the difference between the message and reality becomes too difficult to ignore, ruining morale. The suppressed reality (The emperor has no clothes!) can spread as a whisper, resulting in passive-aggressive behavior and deliberate foot-dragging all the way to sabotage, defections and resignations.
The functions of stupidity management are to project an image, to encourage stupidity self-management in defense of that image, and to block communication whenever anyone lapses into reflexivity or substantive reasoning, or demands justification. Communication is blocked through the exercise of managerial power. The authors discuss four major ways in which managers routinely exercise their power in defense of functional stupidity: direct suppression, setting the agenda, ideological manipulation, and fetishizing leadership. Of these, direct suppression is by far the simplest: the manager signals to the subordinate that further discussion will not be appreciated, threatening or carrying out disciplinary action if the signaling doesn’t work. Setting the agenda is a more subtle technique; for instance, a typical ploy is to require that all criticisms be accompanied by constructive suggestions, placing beyond the pale all problems that do not have immediate solutions (which are the vast majority). Ideological manipulation is more subtle yet; one common technique is to emphasize action, at the expense of deliberation, as expressed by the corporate cliché stop thinking about it and start doing it! Finally, fetishizing leadership involves splitting each group into leaders and followers, where the leaders seek to make their mark, whatever it takes, and to get promoted quickly. To do so successfully, they must suppress the critical faculties of those around them, compelling them to act as obedient followers.
Functional stupidity is self-reinforcing. Stupidity self-management, reinforced by using the four managerial techniques listed above, produces a fragile, blinkered sort of certainty. By refusing to look in certain directions, people are able to pretend that what is there does not exist. But reality tends to intrude on their field of perception sooner or later, and then the reaction is to retreat into functional stupidity even further: those who can ignore reality the longest are rewarded and promoted, setting an example for others.
But the spell can also be broken when the artificial reality bubble protected by functional stupidity is punctured by a particularly contradictory outcome. For an individual, the prospect of unemployment or the end to one’s career can produce such a sudden realization: How could I have been so stupid? Similarly, entire organizations can be shaken out of their stupor by a painful fiasco that subjects them to a barrage of public criticism. Public exposure can sometimes serve as a stupidity-busting event. A particularly daunting challenge is to pop the functional stupidity bubble of an entire nation, since there is no public forum at which objective outsiders can force national leaders to take part in a substantive discussion. Bearing witness to the fast-approaching end of the nation as a going concern may be of help here.
How could we have been so stupid? Well, now you know.
55 Things About America You May Not Know
(note: People need to look for better answers than are given them by media, politics and worthless churches. But they feel no such need as long as their eyes and ears are dulled, and they are comfortable and proud of the status quo in this corrupt and disintegrating society. There is nothing to be proud of in American politics and religion. Looking to man’s government and/or man’s religion for answers has left Americans empty and miserable. The following article helps show the degradation that has resulted from looking to men and men’s institutions for answers instead of looking to God for answers. America has changed substantially in my lifetime. Things are growing worse day by day. These statistics would not have come upon America had Americans been looking to God.)
Is America the greatest nation on the planet? Before you answer that question, you might want to check out the statistics that I have shared in this article first. The reality is that the United States is in a deep state of decline, and it is getting harder to deny that fact with each passing day. Mentally, emotionally, physically, spiritually and financially we are a train wreck. Many that are “patriotic” attempt to put a happy face on our growing problems, but the truly patriotic thing to do is to admit just how bad things have gotten so that we can start finding solutions.
If you truly love this country, then you should know that this nation needs a huge wake up call. We have abandoned the values and the principles that early Americans held so dear, and as a result our society is a giant mess. The following are 55 things about America that you may not know…
#1 We are supposed to have a government “of the people, by the people, for the people”, but only 25 percent of all Americans know how long U.S. Senators are elected for (6 years), and only 20 percent of all Americans know how many U.S. senators there are.
#2 Americans spend more on health care per capita than anyone else in the world by far, and yet we only rank 35th in life expectancy.
#3 Only one state in the entire country has an obesity rate of under 20 percent. 11 states have an obesity rate of over 30 percent.
#4 Of all the major industrialized nations, America is the most obese. Mexico is #2.
#5 Back in 1962, only 13 percent of all Americans were obese, but it is being projected that 42 percent of all Americans could be obese by the year 2030.
#6 According to a new report from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, 31 percent of all food in the United States gets wasted. In case you were wondering, that amounts to approximately 133 billion pounds of food a year.
#7 America has the highest incarceration rate and the largest total prison population in the entire world by a wide margin.
#8 In America, we even put 81-year-old women in prison for feeding the birds.
#9 According to a Newsweek survey taken a few years ago, 29 percent of all Americans could not even name the vice president.
#10 Americans spend more time sitting in traffic than anyone else in the world.
#1160 percent of Americans report feeling “angry or irritable”. Two years ago that number was at 50 percent.
#1236 percent of Americans admit that they have yelled at a customer service agent during the past year.
#13 Only 30 percent of all Americans can tell you in what year the 9/11 attacks happened.
#14 There are more “deaths by reptile” in America than anywhere else in the world.
#15 Right now, 29 percent of all Americans under the age of 35 are living with their parents.
#16 Average SAT scores have been falling for years, and the level of education that our kids are receiving in most of our public schools is a total joke.
#17 According to a study conducted by the Mayo Clinic, nearly 70 percent of all Americans are on at least one prescription drug. An astounding 20 percent of all Americans are on at least five prescription drugs.
#18 Americans spend more than 280 billion dollars on prescription drugs each year.
#19 According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, doctors in the United States write more than 250 million prescriptions for antidepressants each year.
#20 Children in the United States are three times more likely to be prescribed antidepressants than children in Europe are.
#21 In the United States today, prescription painkillers kill more Americans than heroin and cocaine combined.
#22 America has the highest rate of illegal drug use on the entire planet.
#23 According to the federal government, the number of heroin addicts in the United States has more than doubled since 2002.
#24 It is hard to believe, but 56 percent of all Americans now have “subprime credit”.
#25 America exports more weapons to other countries than anyone else in the world.
#26 The United States has the most complicated tax system on the entire planet.
#27 Corruption is rampant throughout our society. In fact, America leads the world in money given to fake charities.
#28 America leads the world in soft drink consumption by a wide margin. Today, the average American drinks more than 600 sodas a year.
#29 In 2008, 53 percent of all Americans considered themselves to be “middle class”. In 2014, only 44 percent of all Americans consider themselves to be “middle class”.
#3070 percent of Americans do not “feel engaged or inspired at their jobs”.
#3140 percent of all workers in the United States actually make less than what a full-time minimum wage worker made back in 1968 after you account for inflation.
#32 Back in the 1970s, about one out of every 50 Americans was on food stamps. Today, about one out of every 6 Americans is on food stamps.
#33 The marriage rate in the United States has fallen to an all-time low. Right now it is sitting at a yearly rate of 6.8 marriages per 1000 people.
#34 In the United States today, more than half of all couples “move in together” before they get married.
#35 America has the highest divorce rate in the world by a good margin.
#36 America has the highest percentage of one person households on the entire planet.
#37 100 years ago, 4.52 were living in the average U.S. household, but now the average U.S. household only consists of 2.59 people.
#38 According to the Pew Research Center, only 51 percent of all American adults are currently married. Back in 1960, 72 percent of all adults in the United States were married.
#39 For women under the age of 30 in the United States, more than half of all babies are being born out of wedlock.
#40 At this point, approximately one out of every three children in the United States lives in a home without a father.
#41 In 1970, the average woman had her first child when she was 21.4 years old. Now the average woman has her first child when she is 25.6 years old.
#42 America has the highest teen pregnancy rate in the world by a very wide margin.
#43 Approximately one out of every four teen girls in the United States has at least one sexually transmitted disease.
#44 America has the highest STD infection rate in the entire industrialized world.
#45 According to the latest figures released by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, there are 20 million new sexually-transmitted infections in the United States every single year, and Americans in the 15 to 24-year-old age range account for approximately 50 percent of those new sexually-transmitted infections.
#46 There are 747,408 registered sex offenders in the U.S. according to the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children.
#47 America produces more pornography than any other nation in the world.
#48 America has the most lawyers per capita in the entire world.
#49 If you choose to be a “Constitutionalist” in America today, you may get labeled as a potential terrorist by the U.S. government.
#50 America has the largest national debt in the history of the world. Back in 1980, the U.S. national debt was less than one trillion dollars. Today, it is over 17 trillion dollars.
#51 According to the Congressional Budget Office, interest payments on the national debt will nearly quadruple over the next ten years.
#52 Americans spend more money on elections than anyone else does in the world by a very wide margin.
#5365 percent of Americans are dissatisfied “with the U.S. system of government and its effectiveness”. That is the highest level of dissatisfaction that Gallup has ever recorded.
#54 Only 8 percent of Americans believe that Congress is doing a “good” or “excellent” job.
#5570 percent of Americans do not have confidence that the federal government will “make progress on the important problems and issues facing the country in 2014.”
All of the information in this essay came from A People’s History of the United States, by Howard Zinn, and Lies My Teacher Told Me, by James W. Loewen, both of which uses primary sources such as eyewitness accounts, journal entries, and letters from Christopher Columbus himself.
The Irish Slaves That Time Forgot
(The Beast System’s rich and powerful always use their subjects like cattle … expendable and cheap. Politicians think nothing of sending thousands of young ignorant soldiers to be sacrificed in meaningless wars.
To create a false-flag incident as a premise to instigate a war, politicians think nothing of murdering thousands of their own … as with the sinking of The Lusitania to start WW1, Pearl Harbor to get the US into WW2, the Gulf of Tonkin deception to start the Vietnam War, and 9-11 to start “The War On Terror.”
All these, and every incident that starts a war, are/were intentional deceptions to instigate a war … and thousands of unsuspecting soldiers and often civilians are killed by planned false-flag deceptions by our own government. It always works, and the ignorant population is always provoked into a mood to support a war that the politicians and bankers want.
The British rulers/bankers were heartless beasts, the same as today’s rulers in Washington DC. and Wall Street. The lives of their subjects mean nothing to the Beast System’s 1% elite. And sadly, the 99% never seem to figure this out. In fact, under the rubric of “patriotism” the ignorant 99% in America are programmed to vigorously support their own enslavement under their criminal rulers. -ed.)
The Irish Slave Trade – The Forgotten “White” Slaves
“They came as slaves; vast human cargo transported on tall British ships bound for the Americas. They were shipped by the hundreds of thousands and included men, women, and even the youngest of children.
“Whenever they rebelled or even disobeyed an order, they were punished in the harshest ways. Slave owners would hang their human property by their hands and set their hands or feet on fire as one form of punishment. They were burned alive and had their heads placed on pikes in the marketplace as a warning to other captives.
“We don’t really need to go through all of the gory details, do we? We know all too well the atrocities of the African slave trade.”
But, are we talking about African slavery? King James II and Charles I also led a continued effort to enslave the Irish. Britain’s famed Oliver Cromwell furthered this practice of dehumanizing one’s next door neighbor.
The Irish slave trade began when James II sold 30,000 Irish prisoners as slaves to the New World. His Proclamation of 1625 required Irish political prisoners be sent overseas and sold to English settlers in the West Indies. By the mid 1600s, the Irish were the main slaves sold to Antigua and Montserrat. At that time, 70% of the total population of Montserrat were Irish slaves.
Ireland quickly became the biggest source of human livestock for English merchants. The majority of the early slaves to the New World were actually white.
From 1641 to 1652, over 500,000 Irish were killed by the English and another 300,000 were sold as slaves. Ireland’s population fell from about 1,500,000 to 600,000 in one single decade. Families were ripped apart as the British did not allow Irish dads to take their wives and children with them across the Atlantic. This led to a helpless population of homeless women and children. Britain’s solution was to auction them off as well.
During the 1650s, over 100,000 Irish children between the ages of 10 and 14 were taken from their parents and sold as slaves in the West Indies, Virginia and New England. In this decade, 52,000 Irish (mostly women and children) were sold to Barbados and Virginia. Another 30,000 Irish men and women were also transported and sold to the highest bidder. In 1656, Cromwell ordered that 2000 Irish children be taken to Jamaica and sold as slaves to English settlers.
Many people today will avoid calling the Irish slaves what they truly were: Slaves. They’ll come up with terms like “Indentured Servants” to describe what occurred to the Irish. However, in most cases from the 17th and 18th centuries, Irish slaves were nothing more than human cattle.
As an example, the African slave trade was just beginning during this same period. It is well recorded that African slaves, not tainted with the stain of the hated Catholic theology and more expensive to purchase, were often treated far better than their Irish counterparts.
African slaves were very expensive during the late 1600s (50 Sterling). Irish slaves came cheap (no more than 5 Sterling). If a planter whipped or branded or beat an Irish slave to death, it was never a crime. A death was a monetary setback, but far cheaper than killing a more expensive African. The English masters quickly began breeding the Irish women for both their own personal pleasure and for greater profit. Children of slaves were themselves slaves, which increased the size of the master’s free workforce. Even if an Irish woman somehow obtained her freedom, her kids would remain slaves of her master. Thus, Irish moms, even with this new found emancipation, would seldom abandon their kids and would remain in servitude.
In time, the English thought of a better way to use these women (in many cases, girls as young as 12) to increase their market share: The settlers began to breed Irish women and girls with African men to produce slaves with a distinct complexion. These new “mulatto” slaves brought a higher price than Irish livestock and, likewise, enabled the settlers to save money rather than purchase new African slaves. This practice of interbreeding Irish females with African men went on for several decades and was so widespread that, in 1681, legislation was passed “forbidding the practice of mating Irish slave women to African slave men for the purpose of producing slaves for sale.” In short, it was stopped only because it interfered with the profits of a large slave transport company.
England continued to ship tens of thousands of Irish slaves for more than a century. Records state that, after the 1798 Irish Rebellion, thousands of Irish slaves were sold to both America and Australia. There were horrible abuses of both African and Irish captives. One British ship even dumped 1,302 slaves into the Atlantic Ocean so that the crew would have plenty of food to eat.
There is little question that the Irish experienced the horrors of slavery as much (if not more in the 17th Century) as the Africans did. There is, also, very little question that those brown, tanned faces you witness in your travels to the West Indies are very likely a combination of African and Irish ancestry. In 1839, Britain finally decided on it’s own to end it’s participation in Satan’s highway to hell and stopped transporting slaves. While their decision did not stop pirates from doing what they desired, the new law slowly concluded THIS chapter of nightmarish Irish misery.
But, if anyone, black or white, believes that slavery was only an African experience, then they’ve got it completely wrong.
Irish slavery is a subject worth remembering, not erasing from our memories.
But, where are our public (and PRIVATE) schools???? Where are the history books? Why is it so seldom discussed?
Do the memories of hundreds of thousands of Irish victims merit more than a mention from an unknown writer?
Or is their story to be one that their English pirates intended: To (unlike the African book) have the Irish story utterly and completely disappear as if it never happened.
None of the Irish victims ever made it back to their homeland to describe their ordeal. These are the lost slaves; the ones that time and biased history books conveniently forgot.
ORIGIN OF “THE TWELVE DAYS OF CHRISTMAS”
In Merry Ol’ England, during the Tudor era, the 12 Days of Christmas (made popular by the traditional song) actually began on Christmas day and went through New Years to the 6th of January. To understand this tradition we must discuss the Lord of Misrule.
The start to the Christmas season began with the appointment of the Lord of Misrule. This “Lord” was generally a peasant who was appointed by the local Parish. He led the celebrations, presiding over large drinking parties and feasting, including the “Feast of Fools.” In this role reversal, the Lord of Misrule mocked the King, ruling in his stead for 12 days. At the end of the 12 Days of Christmas, his rule came to an end and the King “resumed” his duties.
This tradition was passed down for generations until 1512, when Henry VIII abolished it. I suppose he didn’t want to share his power with anyone, especially a “fool.” When Mary 1 came to power, she reinstated the tradition, but Elizabeth 1 abolished it again.
Another form of the Lord of Misrule surrounded Twelfth Night. Twelfth Night was the last night of the 12 Days of Christmas, and was marked by a large feast. During the feast, a bean was baked into a cake. The person who found the bean became the “Lord of Misrule,” and presided over the banquet. Roles were reversed, with the King and nobles becoming “peasants.” At midnight, the Lord of Misrule’s reign ended and the world returned to normal.
The origin of the tradition of the “twelve days of the Lord of Misrule” goes back to the Roman feast of Saturnalia — dedicated to the god of Saturn. Saturnalia occurred at the winter solstice (time of modern Christmas) and was celebrated with outrageous feasting, debauchery of all kinds, and pagan revelry.
Saturnalia was the winter festival honoring Saturn. This was the forerunner to the church holiday of Christmas.
Christmas is a winter solstice festival developed from two ancient pagan festivals: the great Yule-feast of the Norsemen, and the Roman Saturnalia. It was close enough to the winter solstice to acquire many of the associations of the Norse ceremony: the Yule-log, the evergreen decorations in houses and churches, even the Christmas feast itself. These elements were combined with the Saturnalia of the Romans to provide the basis for the early church festival.
During the Saturnalia, gifts were made by wealthy to the poor in honor of the golden age of liberty when Saturn ruled the known world, and slaves were allowed to change places and clothing with their masters. They even elected their own mock king who, for the period of the festival, ruled as a despot. The Saturnalia involved the wildest debauchery, and was a festival worthy of Pan himself.
The church in early Europe adopted folk festivals of the Saturnalia type. These feasts involved going about naked without shame, some crawled on all fours, some on stilts, some imitating animals.
The Feast of Fools, or Kalendae, was an ecclesiastical orgy conspicuous chiefly of reversal of roles. Priests and clerics wore masks and monstrous visages at the hours of office. They danced in the choir dressed as women. They sang wanton songs. They ate black puddings at the horn of the altar while the celebrant was saying mass. They played dice. They incensed with stinking smoke from the soles of old shoes. They ran and leaped through the church without a blush at their own shame. Finally they drove about the town and its theaters in shabby traps and carts to the laughter of their fellows and the bystanders in infamous performances with indecent gestures and obscene verses.
The reversal of status is especially marked by such offices as bishop, pope, and king — all examples of the mock authority common in folk-festivals.
Ancient Rome had a Stultorum Feriae on February 17. This dionysiac orgy was conspicuous for the prominence of women … probably men dressed as women. Dancing and excessive physical exertion, drinking, and the eating of raw flesh and drinking of warm blood were features.
Saturn and the “Twelve Days of Christmas”:
The sinister aspect of Saturn; the winter solstice…birthday of the unconquerable sun…The dead return during the twelve nights of the duration of the Saturnalia … The twelve days of Chaos symbolize the pattern of the coming months of the year. The period of Chaos is governed by the Lord of Misrule … Transvestism (cross dressing) is a feature of the time of Chaos in Saturnalia, orgies, carnivals etc. and signifies a form of return to chaos. Babylon held the twelve days of duel between Chaos and Cosmos; in the Church these are the twelve days of Christmas.
The Lord of Misrule and the Mummers
The Lord of Misrule played a major part in the Christmas festivities in medieval England. He was the leader of many holiday activities, but he also had real power, and his whims had to be obeyed by all, even the king. The Lord of Misrule was a strictly secular figure, appointed by the king and the nobility to reign over the twelve days of Christmas. The man chosen for this position, however, was generally wise enough not to abuse his power when dealing with the nobility.
Much of the custom surrounding the Lord of Misrule had parallels with the Roman Saturnalia, during which masters and slaves changed places, with general rowdiness abounding.
Out on the streets among the common people, the Lord of Misrule was head of the mummers, a traveling band of rowdy players (carolers) who roamed the streets in costume performing plays, songs, and so on. Though they stuck to the streets for the most part, the mummers were sometimes known to barge into churches and disrupt the service, an act that did not sit well with church officials.
The mummers, roving street carolers, offered just about anything that would win the attention of passers-by. The classic mummer’s play has a number of variations, but it always focuses on the death and revival of one of the principals. The ancestors of street actors, the mummers did it all: plays, songs, comedy routines, and nearly any other diversion that came to mind.
Like carolers, mummers would often perform in exchange for goodies, though their performances were often disruptive and sacrilegious.
When the Puritans came to power, they did away with the Lord of Misrule and his companions. In fact, they did away with the celebration of Christmas all together.
Though the restored monarchy reinstated most of the Christmas traditions outlawed by the Puritans, the Lord of Misrule remained an outlaw. He and the mummers never again enjoyed the freedom and popularity they had had in medieval England; however, Christmas mummers can still be found in some parts of the world, including Ireland and Canada’s Newfoundland.
EIGHT DECADES OF BANKING HISTORY AT A GLANCE
The Four Horsemen of Banking
Dean Henderson — Veterans Today
If you want to know where the true power center of the world lies, follow the money – cui bono. According to Global Finance magazine, as of 2010 the world’s five biggest banks are all based in Rothschild fiefdoms UK and France.
They are the French BNP ($3 trillion in assets), Royal Bank of Scotland ($2.7 trillion), the UK-based HSBC Holdings ($2.4 trillion), the French Credit Agricole ($2.2 trillion) and the British Barclays($2.2 trillion).
In the US, a combination of deregulation and merger-mania has left four mega-banks ruling the financial roost. According to Global Finance, as of 2010 they are Bank of America ($2.2 trillion), JP Morgan Chase ($2 trillion), Citigroup ($1.9 trillion) and Wells Fargo ($1.25 trillion). I have dubbed them the Four Horsemen of US banking.
Consolidating the US Money Power
The September 2000 marriage which created JP Morgan Chase was the grandest merger in a frenzy of bank consolidation that took place throughout the 1990’s. Merger mania was fed by a massive deregulation of the banking industry including revocation of the Glass Steagal Act of 1933, which was enacted after the Great Depression to curb the banking monopolies which had caused the 1929 stock market crash and precipitated the Great Depression.
In July 1929 Goldman Sachs launched two investment trusts called Shenandoah and Blue Ridge. Through August and September they touted these trusts to the public, selling hundreds of millions of dollars worth of shares through the Goldman Sachs Trading Corporation at $104/share. Goldman Sachs insiders were bailing out of the stock market. By the fall of 1934 the trust shares were worth $1.75 each. One director at both Shenandoah and Blue Ridge was Sullivan & Cromwell lawyer John Foster Dulles.
John Merrill, founder of Merrill Lynch, exited the stock market in 1928, as did insiders at Lehman Brothers. Chase Manhattan Chairman Alfred Wiggin took his “hunch” to the next level, forming Shermar Corporation in 1929 to short the stock of his own company. Following the Crash of 1929, Citibank President Charles Mitchell was jailed for tax evasion.
In February 1995 President Bill Clinton announced plans to wipe out both Glass Steagal and the Bank Holding Company Act of 1956- which barred banks from owning insurance companies and other financial entities. That day the old opium and slave trader Barings went belly up after one of its Singapore-based traders named Nicholas Gleason got caught on the wrong side of billions of dollars in derivative currency trades.
The warning went unheeded. In 1991 US taxpayers, already billed over $500 billion dollars for the S&L looting, were charged another $70 billion to bail out the FDIC, then footed the bill for a secret 2 1/2-year rescue of Citibank, which was close to collapse after the Latin American debt crunch hit home. With their bill’s paid by US taxpayers and bank deregulation a done deal, the stage was set for a slew of bank mergers like none the world had ever seen.
Reagan Undersecretary of Treasury George Gould had stated that concentration of banking into five to ten giant banks was what the US economy needed. Gould’s nightmare vision was about to come true.
In 1992, Bank of America bought its biggest West Coast rival Security Pacific, then swallowed up the looted Continental Bank of Illinois for cheap. Bank of America later took a 34% stake in Black Rock (Barclays owns 20% of Black Rock) and an 11% share in China Construction Bank, making it the nation’s second largest bank holding company with assets of $214 billion. Citibank controlled $249 billion.
Both banks have since increase their assets to around $2 trillion each.
In 1993 Chemical Bank gobbled up Texas Commerce to become the third largest bank holding company with $170 billion in assets. Chemical Bank had already merged with Manufacturers Hanover Trust in 1990.
North Carolina National Bank and C&S Sovran merged into Nation’s Bank, then the fourth largest US bank holding company, with $169 billion in its war chest. Fleet Norstar bought Bank of New England, while Norwest bought United Banks of Colorado.
Throughout this period US bank profits were soaring, breaking records with each new quarter. The year 1995 broke all previous records for bank mergers. Deals totaling $389 billion occurred that year.  The Big Five investment banks, who had just made boatloads of money steering Latin American debt negotiations, now made a killing steering the bank and industrial merger-mania of the 1980’s and 1990’s.
According to Standard & Poors the top five investment banks were Merrill Lynch, Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley Dean Witter, Salomon Smith Barney and Lehman Brothers. One deal that fell through in 1995 was a proposed merger between London’s biggest investment bank S. G. Warburg and Morgan Stanley Dean Witter. Warburg chose Union Bank of Switzerland as its suitor instead, creating UBS Warburg as a sixth force in investment banking.
After the 1995 feeding frenzy the money center banks moved aggressively into the Middle East, establishing operations in Tel Aviv, Beirut and Bahrain – where the US 5th Fleet was setting up shop. Bank privatizations in Egypt, Morocco, Tunisia and Israel opened the door to the mega-banks in those nations. Chase and Citibank borrowed money to Royal Dutch/Shell and Saudi Petrochemical, while JP Morgan advised the Qatargas consortium led by Exxon Mobil.
The global insurance industry had a case of merger mania as well. By 1995 Traveler’s Group had bought Aetna, Warren Buffet’s Berkshire Hathaway had eaten up Geico, Zurich Insurance had swallowed Kemper Corporation, CNA Financial had purchased Continental Companies and General RE Corporation had sunk its teeth into Colonia Konzern AG.
In late 1998, the Citibank colossus merged with Travelers Group to become Citigroup, creating a behemoth worth $700 billion that boasted 163,000 employees in over 100 countries and included the firms of Salomon Smith Barney (a joint venture with Morgan Stanley), Commercial Credit, Primerica Financial Services, Shearson Lehman, Barclays America, Aetna and Security Pacific Financial.
That same year, Bankers Trust and US investment bank, Alex Brown, were scooped up by Deutsche Bank, which had also purchased Morgan Grenfell of London in 1989. The purchase made Deutsche Bank the world’s largest bank at the time with assets of $882 billion. In January of 2002, Japanese titans Mitsubishi and Sumitomo combined operations to create Mitsubishi Sumitomo Bank, which surpassed Deutsche Bank with assets of $905 billion.
By 2004 HSBC had become the world’s second largest bank. Six years later, all three behemoths had been eclipsed by both BN: and Royal Bank of Scotland.
In the US, the George Gould nightmare reached its ugly nadir just in time for the new millennium when Chase Manhattan swallowed up Chemical Bank. Bechtel banker Wells Fargo bought Norwest Bank, while Bank of America absorbed Nations Bank. The coup de grace came when the reunified House of Morgan announced that it would merge with the Rockefeller Chase Manhattan/Chemical Bank/ Manufacturers Hanover machine.
Four giant banks emerged to rule the US financial roost. JP Morgan Chase and Citigroup were kings of capital on the East Coast. Together they control 52.86% of the New York Federal Reserve Bank. Bank of America and Wells Fargo reigned supreme on the West Coast.
During the 2008 banking crisis these firms got much larger, receiving a nearly $1 trillion government bailout compliments of Bush Treasury Secretary and Goldman Sachs alumni Henry Paulsen; while quietly taking over distressed assets for pennies on the dollar.
Barclays took over Lehman Brothers. JP Morgan Chase got Washington Mutual and Bear Stearns. Bank of America was handed Merrill Lynch and Countrywide. Wells Fargo swallowed up Wachovia – the nation’s 5th biggest bank.
The same Eight Families-controlled banks, which for decades had galloped their Four Horsemen of oil roughshod through the Persian Gulf oil patch, are now more powerful than at any time in history. They are the Four Horsemen of US banking.
What Does One Trillion Dollars Look Like?
Click on this link to see a visual representation of $1 Trillion.
SIGNS OF A LOST SOCIETY
For Women Under 30, Most Births Occur Outside Marriage
Amber Strader, of Lorain, Ohio, described her pregnancies as largely unplanned, a byproduct of relationships lacking commitment. More Photos »
By JASON DePARLE and SABRINA TAVERNISE
Published: February 17, 2012
LORAIN, Ohio — It used to be called illegitimacy. Now it is the new normal. After steadily rising for five decades, the share of children born to unmarried women has crossed a threshold: more than half of births to American women under 30 occur outside marriage.
Once largely limited to poor women and minorities, motherhood without marriage has settled deeply into middle America. The fastest growth in the last two decades has occurred among white women in their 20s who have some college education but no four-year degree, according to Child Trends, a Washington research group that analyzed government data.
Among mothers of all ages, a majority — 59 percent in 2009 — are married when they have children. But the surge of births outside marriage among younger women — nearly two-thirds of children in the United States are born to mothers under 30 — is both a symbol of the transforming family and a hint of coming generational change.
One group still largely resists the trend: college graduates, who overwhelmingly marry before having children. That is turning family structure into a new class divide, with the economic and social rewards of marriage increasingly reserved for people with the most education.
“Marriage has become a luxury good,” said Frank Furstenberg, a sociologist at the University of Pennsylvania.
The shift is affecting children’s lives. Researchers have consistently found that children born outside marriage face elevated risks of falling into poverty, failing in school or suffering emotional and behavioral problems.
The forces rearranging the family are as diverse as globalization and the pill. Liberal analysts argue that shrinking paychecks have thinned the ranks of marriageable men, while conservatives often say that the sexual revolution reduced the incentive to wed and that safety net programs discourage marriage.
Here in Lorain, a blue-collar town west of Cleveland where the decline of the married two-parent family has been especially steep, dozens of interviews with young parents suggest that both sides have a point.
Over the past generation, Lorain lost most of two steel mills, a shipyard and a Ford factory, diminishing the supply of jobs that let blue-collar workers raise middle-class families. More women went to work, making marriage less of a financial necessity for them. Living together became routine, and single motherhood lost the stigma that once sent couples rushing to the altar. Women here often describe marriage as a sign of having arrived rather than a way to get there.
Meanwhile, children happen.
Amber Strader, 27, was in an on-and-off relationship with a clerk at Sears a few years ago when she found herself pregnant. A former nursing student who now tends bar, Ms. Strader said her boyfriend was so dependent that she had to buy his cigarettes. Marrying him never entered her mind. “It was like living with another kid,” she said.
When a second child, with a new boyfriend, followed three years later — her birth control failed, she said — her boyfriend, a part-time house painter, was reluctant to wed.
Ms. Strader likes the idea of marriage; she keeps her parents’ wedding photo on her kitchen wall and says her boyfriend is a good father. But for now marriage is beyond her reach.
“I’d like to do it, but I just don’t see it happening right now,” she said. “Most of my friends say it’s just a piece of paper, and it doesn’t work out anyway.”
The recent rise in single motherhood has set off few alarms, unlike in past eras. When Daniel Patrick Moynihan, then a top Labor Department official and later a United States senator from New York, reported in 1965 that a quarter of black children were born outside marriage — and warned of a “tangle of pathology” — he set off a bitter debate.
By the mid-1990s, such figures looked quaint: a third of Americans were born outside marriage. Congress, largely blaming welfare, imposed tough restrictions. Now the figure is 41 percent — and 53 percent for children born to women under 30, according to Child Trends, which analyzed 2009 data from the National Center for Health Statistics.
Still, the issue received little attention until the publication last month of “Coming Apart,” a book by Charles Murray, a longtime critic of non-marital births.
Large racial differences remain: 73 percent of black children are born outside marriage, compared with 53 percent of Latinos and 29 percent of whites. And educational differences are growing. About 92 percent of college-educated women are married when they give birth, compared with 62 percent of women with some post-secondary schooling and 43 percent of women with a high school diploma or less, according to Child Trends.
Almost all of the rise in nonmarital births has occurred among couples living together. While in some countries such relationships endure at rates that resemble marriages, in the United States they are more than twice as likely to dissolve than marriages. In a summary of research, Pamela Smock and Fiona Rose Greenland, both of the University of Michigan, reported that two-thirds of couples living together split up by the time their child turned 10.
In Lorain as elsewhere, explanations for marital decline start with home economics: men are worth less than they used to be. Among men with some college but no degrees, earnings have fallen 8 percent in the past 30 years, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, while the earnings of their female counterparts have risen by 8 percent.
“Women used to rely on men, but we don’t need to anymore,” said Teresa Fragoso, 25, a single mother in Lorain. “We support ourselves. We support our kids.”
Fifty years ago, researchers have found, as many as a third of American marriages were precipitated by a pregnancy, with couples marrying to maintain respectability. Ms. Strader’s mother was among them.
Today, neither of Ms. Strader’s pregnancies left her thinking she should marry to avoid stigma. Like other women interviewed here, she described her children as largely unplanned, a byproduct of uncommitted relationships.
Some unwed mothers cite the failures of their parents’ marriages as reasons to wait. Brittany Kidd was 13 when her father ran off with one of her mother’s friends, plunging her mother into depression and leaving the family financially unstable.
“Our family life was pretty perfect: a nice house, two cars, a dog and a cat,” she said. “That stability just got knocked out like a window; it shattered.”
Ms. Kidd, 21, said she could not imagine marrying her son’s father, even though she loves him. “I don’t want to wind up like my mom,” she said.
Others noted that if they married, their official household income would rise, which could cost them government benefits like food stamps and child care. W. Bradford Wilcox, a sociologist at the University of Virginia, said other government policies, like no-fault divorce, signaled that “marriage is not as fundamental to society” as it once was.
Even as many Americans withdraw from marriage, researchers say, they expect more from it: emotional fulfillment as opposed merely to practical support. “Family life is no longer about playing the social role of father or husband or wife, it’s more about individual satisfaction and self-development,” said Andrew Cherlin, a sociologist at Johns Hopkins University.
Money helps explain why well-educated Americans still marry at high rates: they can offer each other more financial support, and hire others to do chores that prompt conflict. But some researchers argue that educated men have also been quicker than their blue-collar peers to give women equal authority. “They are more willing to play the partner role,” said Sara McLanahan, a Princeton sociologist.
Reviewing the academic literature, Susan L. Brown of Bowling Green State University recently found that children born to married couples, on average, “experience better education, social, cognitive and behavioral outcomes.”
Lisa Mercado, an unmarried mother in Lorain, would not be surprised by that. Between nursing classes and an all-night job at a gas station, she rarely sees her 6-year-old daughter, who is left with a rotating cast of relatives. The girl’s father has other children and rarely lends a hand.
“I want to do things with her, but I end up falling asleep,” Ms. Mercado said.
WHAT “THE 1%” (BANKERS AND HEADS OF STATE) DO IN THEIR SPARE TIME … WHEN THEY AREN’T CONTROLLING MARKETS AND BOMBING POOR COUNTRIES
Strauss-Kahn Didn’t Know Women At Orgies Were Prostitutes
Dominique Strauss-Kahn in the studio of the French TV network TF1
Former IMF (International Monetary Fund) managing director Dominique Strauss-Kahn, who famously faced a sexual assault charge in New York City last year — a charge that was later dropped — is now being questioned by police in France about whether he was a customer of an alleged multinational prostitution ring.
His attorney, though, says Strauss-Kahn has a defense.
“One of Strauss-Kahn’s lawyers has said that the former French presidential hopeful never knew that the women at orgies he attended were prostitutes,” The Associated Press reports:
“He could easily not have known, because as you can imagine, at these kinds of parties you’re not always dressed, and I challenge you to distinguish a naked prostitute from any other naked woman,” Henri Leclerc told French radio Europe 1 in December.
From Paris, correspondent Eleanor Beardsley tells our Newscast Desk that Strauss-Kahn allegedly attended “libertine evenings” at hotels in Paris, Washington and New York City.
America lives by the sword…
America: A Modern-Day Sparta
Permanent war is longstanding policy. America deplores peace. Throughout its history, it’s waged war annually at home and/or abroad. Today it does so globally.
Giving peace a chance is loathed. Direct or proxy wars rage in multiple countries.
“Yes we can” reflects Obama’s pro-war, pro-imperial, pro-ravage, plunder and dominate agenda. He prioritizes it. He abhors human rights, equity, justice, and other democratic values. Rogue leaders operate that way.
Rule of law principles are spurned. Constitutional protections no longer apply. Any nation, organization or person designated a state enemy is targeted.
“Change you can believe in” is polar opposite of what most people expected. America’s empire of bases is global. US special forces operate in over 120 countries. Proxy death squads supplement them. CIA agents and assets are everywhere.
Washington’s Blog said America’s waging 74 wars. It’s “fighting or ‘helping’ some force in some proxy struggle that has been deemed beneficial by the nation’s masters of war.”
At the same time, it’s waging “many more covert wars.” It bears repeating, the very notion of peace is abhorrent. Waging war is prioritized.
Paul Craig Roberts calls America a “gangster state.” He does so for good reason. Its domestic and foreign policies reflect it. No nation ever harmed more people in more ways globally. None ever spurned rule of law principles more egregiously.
Waging war on terror’s a ruse. It’s duplicitous subterfuge. America’s had no enemies since Japan surrendered in August 1945. Manufactured ones substitute.
They’re easy to create. Media scoundrels convince people. Repeating Big Lies ad nauseam works. No terror threat whatever exists.
They’re oblivious to a clear, present and ominous danger. It may end up destroying them. Extrajudicial, unchecked, imperial carte blanche war on the world is policy. There’s no place to hide. No one’s immune. Peace doesn’t stand a chance.
Bashar al-Assad understands. He’s struggling to let Syria survive. The Syrian Arab News Agency (SANA) published his interview with Argentina’s Clarin newspaper and Telam news agency. His comments were candid and forthright.
He blamed “foreign interference” for Syria’s conflict. Most Syrians “reject all forms of external intervention. For us, it is a matter of safeguarding Syria.”
(O)ur level of force relate to the types of weapons and terrorism techniques we are dealing with as well as our ultimate goal of protecting the lives of civilians and the country as a whole.
Terrorism can never be the instrument to achieve reforms. What interest does an internationally listed terrorist from Chechnya or Afghanistan have with the internal political reform process in Syria?
How is the legitimate demand for reform linked with terrorist activities adopted by radicalized foreign fighters?
Recent credible reports show that there are approximately 29 nationalities of foreign fighters engaged in terrorism activities within Syria’s borders.
He stressed his commitment to political reforms. Many have been implemented, he said.
“The essence of any political solution is the aspirations of the Syrian people, decided by the ballot boxes.” Syrians alone must decide. No outside interference is justified. International law prohibits it.
Asked his view on the US/Russian proposed peace conference, he reiterated support for all ways to end violence diplomatically. A political settlement depends on it, he stressed.
At the same time, he’s justifiably “skeptical of the genuine intentions of certain western administrations towards seeking a realistic political solution.”
This caution is based on their continued support of terrorist groups in Syria. We are dedicated to pursuing a political solution, yet there are powers who are pressing for the failure of such a solution. This is a two-way process; it needs commitment from all sides.
(F)oreign-based opposition elements (are) far from autonomous independent decision makers. Their policies are crafted by the countries that give them leverage.
(They) survive on the aid given to them by their patron states, in essence manipulated by the nations that provide their flow of finance.
They live under the auspice and control of their intelligence agencies and thus submit to what is imposed upon them.
Therefore their decisions are not self-governing; most significantly, they lack a popular base in Syria.
It’s well-documented¦that they have until last week clearly and repeatedly rejected political dialogue.
He stressed his commitment “to a comprehensive national dialogue (with) all who have a genuine desire to participate, with no exclusions.”
He rejects doing so with terrorists. “There is no state that would ever negotiate with terrorists. However, we welcome those who lay down their weapons and engage in constructive political dialogue.”
Peaceful conflict resolution’s impossible when external forces support terrorism, he stressed. “Guns and dialogue are clearly incompatible.”
Our assumption is that these countries would not cease this policy as their main goal is to undermine and thus weaken the Syrian state.
Even when we succeed in reaching a Syrian-led political agreement, certain countries such as Qatar, Turkey and others will continue to work to fuel violence and terrorism in Syria.
Therefore, our main precedence from an international conference is an immediate cessation of finance and weapons that are regularly streamed into Syria, placing emphasis on preventing the terrorists and fighters from being flooded into Syria principally through Turkey, with financial support primarily from Qatar and also from other Gulf countries such as Saudi Arabia.
He understands “major international powers” are involved. So is Israel.
Asked if he’d step down, he said “Syrian people will decide whether I remain in office or not.Through the constitution and the presidential elections in 2014, the people will decide.”
He rejects Obama, Kerry or other external figures interfering in Syria’s internal affairs. They have no mandate to speak for Syrians.
To be even more concise and clear, we are an independent state, we are a people who respect ourselves and our right to self-determination.
We do not accept for anyone to dictate to us how to act, whether it is the United States or any other country.
Syria’s in crisis, he stressed. “Any abandonment of my duties now is an attempt to escape from responsibility and I’m not the type of person who runs away from his responsibilities.”
He categorically denied repeated allegations that Syria used chemical weapons. They’re “a clear pretext for military intervention. It is common knowledge that western administrations lie continuously and manufacture stories as a pretext for war.”
Washington and other major powers “delegated Israel to commit its aggression in order to improve the morale of the terrorist groups.”
They did so because Syrian forces “shift(ed) the balance of power on the ground. (They want) to prolong the violence and bloodshed (to) significantly weaken the Syrian state.” He believes “military action” may be forthcoming.
The primary aim of the West is to ensure that they have ‘loyal’ governments at their disposal, similar to those administrations that existed previously in Latin America, which facilitate the exploitation and consumption of a country’s national resources.
A country like Syria is not by any means a satellite state to the West. Syria is an independent state working for the interests of its people, rather than making the Syrian people work for the interests of the West.
It is only normal that they would not want us to play a role, preferring instead a puppet government serving their interests and creating projects that would benefit their peoples and economies.
Syria is strategically placed not just for oil and gas projects, but also to shift the balance of power between the major players.
Previous peace initiatives failed. Another won’t fare better. Washington prioritizes failure. War is longstanding policy.
America’s a worldwide belligerent. Unchallenged global dominance matters most. Independent governments aren’t tolerated.
All means are employed to oust them. Pro-Western satellite regimes are sought. Iran’s America’s principal regional target. War plans were readied years ago.
Replacing Assad’s government makes them easier to implement. So does eliminating Lebanon’s Hezbollah. America’s coalition partners include key NATO allies, Israel, and regional rogue states.
They’re committed to war. They abhor peace. They menace humanity. They may end up destroying it. Their arsenals make it easy. Don’t bet against their use full force.