Re:The Red Pill
« Reply #32 on: 2015-10-20 20:44:59 »
The greatest injustice in the world today might be immigration laws that keep millions of people in abject poverty. But let's not forget most criminal violence is created by black markets which are created solely by legislation...
Quotation of the day is from pages 5-6 of Milton and Rose Friedman’s essential 1962 volume, Capitalism and Freedom:
Beginning in the late nineteenth century, and especially after 1930 in the United States, the term liberalism came to be associated with a very different emphasis, particularly in economic policy. It came to be associated with a readiness to rely primarily on the state rather than on private voluntary arrangements to achieve objectives regarded as desirable. The catchwords became welfare and equality rather than freedom. The nineteenth-century liberal regarded the extension of freedom as the most effective way to promote welfare and equality; the twentieth-century liberal regards welfare and equality as either prerequisites of or alternatives to freedom. In the name of welfare and equality, the twentieth-century liberal has come to favor a revival of the very policies of state intervention and paternalism against which classical liberalism fought. In the very act of turning the clock back to seventeenth-century mercantilism, he is fond of castigating true liberals as reactionary!
"Whether or not Tiller's shooting of Hammond was legally justified, it cannot be morally justified. Even leaving aside Tiller's recklessness, the entire situation was orchestrated by the police to catch Morton with 10 grams of dried vegetable matter that you can legally and openly buy from state-licensed stores in Denver and Seattle. Hammond's death was stupid, pointless, and outrageous regardless of what state or federal prosecutors say about it."
We will find out the answer to the question posed in the title in the outcome of the contest between the new Greek government, formed by the political party Syriza, and the ECB and the private banks, with whose interests the EU and Washington align against Greece.
The Spartans, whose red cloaks and military prowess struck fear into the hearts of both foreign invaders and Greek opponents in the city-states, are no more. Athens itself is a ruin of its historical self. The Greeks, who were once to be contended with, who were able with 300 Spartans, supplemented with a few thousand Corinthians, Thebans, and other warriors, to stop a one hundred thousand man Persian army at Thermopylae, with the final outcome being the defeat of the Persian fleet in the Battle of Salamis and the defeat of the Persian army in the Battle of Plataea, are no more.
The Greeks of history have become a people of legend. Not even the Romans were able to conquer Persia, but little more than a handful of Greeks stopped the attempted Persian conquest of Greece.
But the Greeks, despite their glorious history, could not stop their conquest by the EU and a handful of German and Dutch banks. If the Greece of history still existed, the EU and the private banks would be cowering in fear, because the EU and the private banks have ruthlessly exploited the Greek people and represent the same threat to Greek sovereignty as Persia did.
Greece, stripped of its independence by its EU membership and acceptance of the euro as its currency, has lost is sovereignty. Without control over its own money, Greece cannot finance itself. Greece must rely on private banks from other countries. In the 21st century European private banks are not allowed to lose money simply because they are incompetent and over-lent to EU member countries. This is not considered to be the fault of the banks, but of the borrower governments and populations.
According to reports, the American bankster firm, Goldman Sachs, sometimes known as Gold Sacks, hid Greek debt from view in order that banks would extent more credit to Greece, thus setting the Greek people up for looting.
The EU’s disingenuous argument is that this bankster trickery benefitted the Greek people. The people enjoyed the resources from these loans. Therefore, the Greek people must pay back the loans through reductions in old age pensions, through unemployment, through lower wages, and through the sale of Greek national assets.
This is the austerity that has been imposed on ordinary Greek people by the EU and Greece’s creditors.
Greece is prostrate. Greeks are actually committing suicide, because Greeks cannot provide for themselves in the depressed conditions that the EU and the private banks have created for them for no other reason than that the private banks must not have to write down the loans.
So, one result from “democracy” in Greece is suicide. With enough democracy, we can control world population and halt the destruction of nature’s capital. All we have to do is to enable the banksters to loot the entire world.
What can Syriza do?
Without Spartans, very little.
The party’s intentions and that of its leaders are honest and deserve our respect. Syriza is a people’s party, and that is what marks it for doom. The voice of the people is no longer permitted to affect politics in the Western world. The powerful rich interest groups that rule the West could not care less about the people over whom they rule.
Tsipras stated that the new Greek government does not intend a “catastrophic clash” with its creditors, only an acceptable amelioration of the unreasonable conditions imposed on Greece, in order that Greece can give some satisfaction to its private bank creditors and also avoid social, political and economic instability in Greece.
Against this reasonable statement, Bloomberg reports that the new Greek cabinet contains communists who favor closer ties with Russia. To remind the newly elected Greek government of the whip that is held over Greek financial markets, Greek bond and stock prices were assaulted and driven down.
The warning from the EU and Wall Street is clear: Defy us and we will destroy you.
The punishment of the new Greek government was instant. This from Bloomberg:
“Greek stocks and bonds slumped for a third day, after new ministers said they will cease the sale of some state assets and increase the minimum wage. Yields on three-year bonds rose 2.66 percentage points to 16.69 percent. The benchmark Athens General Index decreased 9.2 percent to its lowest level since 2012, led by a collapse in the value of banks.”
Does Tsipras understand that Greek financial institutions will continue to be punished if they stand behind his government? Bloomberg makes it clear: “Germany warned the Mediterranean nation against abandoning prior agreements on aid, after analysts said that setting Greece on a collision course with its European peers might lead to its exit from the euro region.”
Statements of newly appointed ministers “imply confrontation and tense negotiations in the near future,” Vangelis Karanikas, head of research at Athens-based Euroxx Securities, wrote in a note to clients.”
What is Syriza’s “collusion course”? The new government wants to moderate the agreements made by previous Greek governments that sold out the Greek people. The new government wants to stop giving away at bargain prices Greek public assets to clients of its creditors, and the new Greek government wants to raise the Greek minimum wage so that the Greek people have enough bread and water on which to live.
However, for the private bank creditors, for Merkel’s Germany that stands behind the banks, for Washington which could care less about the Greeks, for the Greek elites who see themselves as “part of Europe,” Syriza is something to be rid of.
And so the Greek bonds are attacked, the Greek stocks are attacked, threats are issued that arouse fear in that part of the Greek population that is propagandized into the belief that Greece must be part of the euro and the EU or be bypassed by history.
What it boils down to is that the Greek people, like the Americans, are insouciant. Only about 37% of the voters voted for Syriza. That is far more votes than any rival party received, but it is not enough to show Washington, the EU and creditors that Greeks stand behind their government.
Instead it shows that the new party had to form a government with another party that money, perhaps, can buy off. It shows that Syriza can be demonized in the Western media and presented to the Greek public as a threat to Greece.
The new government is aware of its weakness. The new prime minister says that he does not want confrontation, but that the new government cannot continue the kowtowing of previous Greek governments. A reasonable accommodation must be reached.
Accommodation is unlikely to occur, because a reasonable accommodation is not the desire of Washington, the EU, or of Greece’s creditors.
A purpose of the “Greek financial crisis” is to establish that EU members are not sovereign countries and that banks that lend to these non-sovereign entities are not responsible for any losses with regard to the loans. The population of the indebted countries are the responsible parties. And these populations must accept the reduction of their living standards in order to ensure that the banks do not lose any money.
This is the “New Democracy.” It is a resurrection of the old feudal order. A few super-rich aristocrats and everyone else serfs obliged to support the ruling order. The looting that began in Greece has spread into Ukraine, and who knows who is next?
With only 37% of the vote, does Syriza have the clout to stand up for Greece against the looters? Can Greece escape from a situation comparable to the European Dark Ages when populations were ravaged by marauding raiders? Perhaps if Greece realigns with Russia and gains financing from BRICS.
Hello darkness, my old friend I've come to talk with you again Because a vision softly creeping Left its seeds while I was sleeping And the vision that was planted in my brain Still remains Within the sound of silence
In restless dreams I walked alone Narrow streets of cobblestone 'Neath the halo of a street lamp I turned my collar to the cold and damp When my eyes were stabbed by the flash of a neon light That split the night And touched the sound of silence
And in the naked light I saw Ten thousand people maybe more People talking without speaking People hearing without listening People writing songs that voices never shared No one dared Disturb the sound of silence
"Fools," said I, "you do not know Silence like a cancer grows Hear my words that I might teach you Take my arms that I might reach you" But my words like silent raindrops fell And echoed in the wells of silence
And the people bowed and prayed To the neon god they made And the sign flashed out its warning In the words that it was forming And the sign said "The words of the prophets are written on the subway walls And tenement halls And whispered in the sound of silence"
This is the original version from 1964 from the album "Wednesday Morning, 3 AM." Just Simon's guitar and the vocals. The famous version was released in 1966. After "Wednesday Morning, 3 AM" flopped, they split up. Without either their knowledge, electric guitars and drums were added and that version of The Sound of Silence became very popular, reaching #1 on the charts in America on New Years Day, 1966. Because of this, Simon and Garfunkel teamed up again and created three more studio albums, one of which one a Grammy award for album of the year and song of the year (Bridge Over Troubled Water).
Music "The Sound of Silence" by Paul Simon (Google Play • iTunes) Category Entertainment License Standard YouTube License
If you want to see how inhumane people can be, just watch those who make and execute foreign policy. We could spend all day discussing the cruelties that politicians and bureaucrats commit against people who live inside the United States. Think how many are caged like wild animals because they manufacture, sell, or consume disapproved substances; gamble where government has forbade it; traded sexual services for money; possessed a gun they weren't "supposed" to possess; etc. ad infinitum. Naturally, America leads the world in locking up people. But at least the policy of mass imprisonment gets increasing attention. Subject to far less scrutiny is how America's (mis)leaders, (mis)representatives, and public (self-)servants treat foreigners, especially those with dark skin and a still-unfamiliar religion.
When we talk about foreign policy, how easy it is to get wrapped up in abstractions like empire, intervention, nonintervention, and kinetic military action. These are important concepts to understand, of course, but foreign-policy conversations often become sterile examinations of "policy," when what we need is a full awareness of the harm to individual human beings, and the destruction of their families, homes, communities, and societies. These persons are the victims of our rulers' geopolitical stratagems, which seemly outrank all other considerations. Yet each victim has a story embodying unique relationships and aspirations, a story that is permanently changed by an American cluster bomb, drone-launched missile, or special-ops mission.
The best that can be said of the perpetrators of this carnage and social devastation is that they are guilty of gross negligence. Many of their acts, however, cross into the territory of premeditated murder and the infliction of mayhem with malice aforethought.
One need not look hard for the most egregious examples taking place right at this moment. In Yemen the Obama administration gives indispensable material support to Saudi Arabia's barbaric war —war ought not to require a qualifier like barbaric, but it seems necessary these days—on the poorest population in the region. The U.S.-facilitated starvation blockade and cluster-bombing take an untold number of Yemeni lives while devastating the social order. Policymakers (a euphemism for the architects of devastation) can rationalize this cruelty in geopolitical terms—the Houthis, who incidentally are fighting al-Qaeda-affiliated jihadis, are (falsely) said to be instruments of Iran—but the fact remains that individual persons who did no harm to anyone are being slaughtered and starved with the help of American politicians and military bureaucrats.
Or how about Syria? U.S. conduct carries out a seemingly incoherent policy of simultaneously targeting the regime of President Bashar al-Assad and one of his chief adversaries, the Islamic State, while helping another Islamist group, al-Nusra Front, that has pledged allegiance to Ayman al-Zawahiri, Osama bin Laden's successor as head of al-Qaeda, perpetrators of the 9/11 attacks. Estimates of the death total in Syria's civil war reach as high as 340,000, a number that represents the toll at the hands of both government and rebel forces. (The total is sometimes invidiously attributed to Assad's military alone.) The injured and refugees are probably uncountable.
What must be understood is that most of these deaths, injuries, and dispossessions would probably not have occurred had the Obama administration—most especially Secretary of State Hillary Clinton—not early on intensified the civil war by declaring Assad's regime "illegitimate," demanding that he "go" (i.e., die), and overseeing the transfer weapons and jihadi fighters from Benghazi, Libya. While doing all this, the Obama administration was thwarting promising efforts toward a negotiated settlement, which might have stopped or at least reduced the killing of innocent persons. For details see these three articles by the excellent investigate journalist Jonathan Marshall.
And then there's Libya itself, which Clinton boasts is an example of "smart power at its best." In 2011 she had egg on her face because she was on the wrong side of the Arab Spring, having defended Egypt's military dictator, Hosni Mubarak, as a family friend and trusted world leader to the bitter end while throngs of aggrieved Egyptians were in the streets demanding his exit. Needing to clean up her image (perhaps in preparation for her quest for the presidency), she along with administration national-security VIPs Samantha Power and Susan Rice persuaded a reluctant Obama that the residents of Benghazi had to be saved from Col. Muammar Gaddafi's alleged genocidal designs. The only problem was that Gaddafi had no genocidal designs. (Also see this and this.) And in a classic exhibition of mission-creep, the U.S.-led NATO air campaign went from protecting Benghazi to changing the regime in Tripoli, prompting Clinton to gloat, "We came. We saw. He died." (Gaddafi was killed extrajudicially, reportedly in a most gruesome manner.)
Since the U.S. intervention, Libya has been wracked by sectarian civil war—even the Islamic State now holds territory there—prompting many Libyans to flee to Europe, which now has to contend with a growing refugee crisis. As noted, the Libyan power vacuum, featuring the unlocking of Gaddafi's arsenal of heavy weapons, helped to boost the Islamist rebel militias in Syria, to the delight of U.S. allies Turkey (which fears the Kurds) and Saudi Arabia (which fears Iran and the Shi'ites). After the nightmare in Iraq, one has to wonder what Clinton was thinking. The closest thing we have to an answer is from then-Secretary of War Robert Gates, an opponent of the intervention, who said, "we were playing it by ear." (And let's not forget: destabilization itself can be an objective.)
Of course we could point to Iraq, George W. Bush's invasion of which in 2003 set most of the aforementioned mayhem in motion, and Afghanistan, but the story is largely the same: innocent lives are sacrificed to the politicians' grand agenda. Little people living small lives can't be allowed to stand in the way.
"The general lesson is that if some part of government fails in its function, it will most likely be given greater funding and power. Of course, the purpose of this is not to reward failure; the thinking would be that more money and power will enable the agency to solve the problem. But the effect is that government grows when social problems grow, and thus it is not in the government’s interests to solve society’s problems."
I recall long ago hearing David Boaz ask rhetorically about this reality: ‘Can you imagine a worse incentive system than one that rewards failure with higher budgets and punishes success with lower budgets?’ I can’t – yet that’s pretty much the prevailing incentive system for governments around the world.