Friday, January 18, 2019

The West's Descent into 'Cultural Revolution'

The goal of the Cultural Revolution isn't to persuade, it's to enforce compliance.
A Cultural Revolution is a movement designed to preserve the political and financial power of a ruling elite by social rather than political or financial means. Thus the primary tools of a Cultural Revolution are not redistributing power via elections (politics) or financial reforms; the primary tools are public shaming and denouncements, purges of those in positions of authority, show trials, guilt-by-association, wholesale denouncements of entire classes and widespread accusations of anti-progressive ("counter-revolutionary") tendencies in which guilt is defined by all-or-nothing litmus tests of one's loyalties to the Cultural Revolution's strict ideology.
You haven't memorized Mao's Little Red Book? Off to re-education camp you go. Or house arrest, banishment, beatings, imprisonment or if the mob's blood lust demands it, execution.
The key dynamic of a Cultural Revolution is the oppressors appropriate the language of liberation as their favored tool of suppressing dissent, denouncing opponents and fueling widespread purges of anyone who might harbor the slightest potential to question the social suppression of dissent.
Now, more than a half-century after the Cultural Revolution began, there is little public discussion of that period in China. What some have called the nation’s collective amnesia has only gotten worse in recent years as leaders have walked back efforts to reckon with the country’s modern history.
To those launching a Cultural Revolution, the solution to a diversity of opinion is to crush dissent and narratives that threaten the ruling elites' power. This is of course the exact opposite of democracy and Enlightenment-era liberalism. But the point of a Cultural Revolution isn't to broaden political enfranchisement or representation--the point of the anti-Deplorables / anti-Brexit / anti-yellow vest campaigns is to strip dissenters (those who disagree with the ruling neoliberal elites) of political and social representation.
The goal of the Cultural Revolution is to render all those who resist the ruling elites politically and socially invisible. The goal isn't to play nice and share power and wealth with the losers of financialization-globalization; the goal is to liquidate their influence in politics and society via relentless negative stereotyping by the elite-controlled mass media and an Orwellian reversal of identity that makes the dissenters into threats to democracy while elevating the elitist oppressors into selfless guardians of democracy--the exact opposite of reality.
In China's Cultural Revolution, the Red Guards mindlessly destroyed much of China's priceless cultural heritage as part of the deranged agenda of destroying whatever was traditional and valued by "counter-revolutionaries." Out with the old, in with the new--the time-honored pattern of power grabs masked by utopian goals.
If in doubt, purge, destroy, denounce. This is the Inquisition nature of all Cultural Revolutions.
China's ruling elites don't want any unedited history of the Cultural Revolution to leak into the public sphere because virtually everyone who was killed, tortured, imprisoned or denounced was innocent. Virtually every one of the millions of victims of the Cultural Revolution was a loyal cadre or average citizen going about their lives. "Counter-revolutionaries" were an illusory, fabricated threat.
Since we have many friends in China, we've heard the reality of the Cultural Revolution in private conversations, spoken in low tones even in the U.S. Nobody dares speak openly about what happened or the Party's role. One friend's father was an officer in the People's Liberation Army, a man whose loyalty was unquestioned. He was imprisoned. Another friend's father was put in house arrest for years because he'd visited Eastern Europe (at the Party's behest, of course) and was therefore suspect.
In Cultural Revolutions, the "crimes" are fabricated but the destruction is real.Take a look at the mainstream media coverage in France, the U.S. and the U.K. of the yellow vest dissenters. Make a list of all the public officials, intellectuals, actors, media pundits etc. who publicly defend the yellow vests and how many denounce them. Did you find any articles on the yellow vests on Page One? What percentage of the corporate-state media depicted the yellow vests as violent, unreasonable, and so on?
If you pursue an objective survey, you'll find few public figures supporting the yellow vest movement and little mainstream media coverage that presents the yellow vest movement in a positive light.
That's how Cultural Revolutions roll. The Nobility in our neofeudal system will work all the levers of power to marginalize, demonize, stereotype and disenfranchise any threats to their power.
The goal of the Cultural Revolution isn't to persuade, it's to enforce compliance. Virtue-signal your compliance in social media every day (i.e. wave your Little Red Book publicly) or you become suspect. Nobody cares what you actually believe, the point is to prove your compliance and complicity to those enforcing compliance and complicity.
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Wednesday, January 16, 2019

A Manifesto for a 'Deplorable' Party

We want the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth and that is our only demand for global human justice.
The "deplorables" now include vast swaths of citizenry around the world:everyone who voted for Trump in the U.S. (and all those who haven't virtue-signaled their contempt for everyone who voted for him); everyone who voted for Brexit in the U.K. (and all those who haven't virtue-signaled their contempt for everyone who voted for Brexit), and more recently, everyone who wears a yellow vest in France, and everyone who has yet to virtue-signal their contempt for the yellow vest dissenters.
So why not establish a political party for the "deplorables," one whose sole aim is to reveal the facts of the matter and let the consequences manifest?Longtime correspondent Simon Hodges has penned a proposed Manifesto for just such a 'Deplorable' Party, which is published here in its entirety.
* * * * *
Proposal for the Manifesto of a Deplorable Party
We the Deplorables, wish to stand for election as a government for the following reasons and with the following aims.
'Power' at present is currently in the throes of its own existential crisis. The strength of this crisis is such that power has now reached a state of complete hysteria as it cannot accept the unwanted conclusions of Brexit or Donald Trump and the agony that arises when the 'powerful' realise that despite their assumption of ‘power’, and all the incredible array and daily barrage of ‘forces’ that were deployed in Brexit - via project economic fear which was deployed alongside project racial slur in trying to control the masses – they were inevitably confronted by the now historically documented and measured social reality that the masses were simply not available for their control.
So power’s hysterical reaction to the stark revelation of its own powerlessness in existential crisis is to hysterically declare the depraved deplorability of the masses in general whom they now openly despise. Without any conscience the progressive elites who preach about the danger of stereotyping – hysterically stereotyped every single person who voted for Trump to be an ignorant, bigoted racist. It has become clear that in recognising the masses as ‘deplorables’ that progressive governments have finally admitted that they despise the masses. It is only in the midst of power’s existential crisis that they confirm this for us.
Brexit, Trump and the current democratic yellow vest protests in France, and even the Bitcoin phenomenon - are all symptoms of the stark reality that neoliberalism has been a degenerative, corrupted political, social and economic failure and that it has become obvious that governments around the world are not serving the best interests of their peoples and that what are presented as representative parliamentary democracies are in fact unrepresentative parliaments going through the motions of democracy. Once the choices of ‘fake’ democracy are deconstructed, then it becomes rather necessary for the masses to want to mount an investigation as to whose best interests all our governments have actually been serving all this time.
To all those of who might politically identify themselves on the left, centre, right and also the apolitical, we must advocate a "Deplorable" party that can be formed to fight coming elections around the world. This will be a party advocating a short term government with no political or economic manifesto to govern their country but a simple promise to uncover and reveal the truth.
Many countries have operated perfectly well without a functioning government for years so this will not be an issue. If required, markets can be suspended for the duration it takes for us to come to our senses.
This party not in government so to speak, would abolish official secrets acts and reveal all the possible evils that have been carried out by our governments across decades. It will examine and make public all damning information it finds as we will fully expose what has been done in our names by our governments around the world. How can you have open government and still retain an official secrets act where evil and corruption can hide behind its curtains? We need honesty and openness in government.
Once our work is done, we can step down and politicians can re-enter the scene in new conditions of complete openness. Without an official secrets act, D-notices and all the dubious machinery of concealment there will be no logical need for conspiracy theories any more.
All any of us really want is the truth. Once we have the truth then we can proceed to acknowledge and redress the evils carried out in our names around the world and begin to establish social and economic fairness and true justice. There are terrorists because the people of the Middle East have justified grievances from our governments imperialist involvement in their histories. The only way to defeat 'terrorism' is to be honest and show that our governments were entirely wrong in pursuing the ends that they did. Once the truth is revealed and the evil that has been carried out in our names established then this will bring great shame upon our governments and trash our international reputations. Good. If these things have all occurred as we suspect, then we fully deserve all international shaming and in terms of justice nothing else will suffice. To do any less is pure hypocrisy.
We want the truth about the invasion of Iraq, we want the truth about the Great Financial Crisis, we want the truth about the Arab spring, about the bombing of Libya and the truth about Syria and Yemen. We want the truth about destabilizing Russia and events in Georgia and the Ukraine which were so fundamental to destroying the anti-imperialist axis between France, Germany and Russia which so frustrated Tony Blair and US Neoconservative deep state in the run up to the invasion of Iraq in 2003. We want the truth about JFK and 9/11. The citizens of Greece need the truth about their corrupted politicians whom in conspiracy with a corrupted neoliberal EU state saddled them with their odious public debts in order to impose austerity upon them and rob them of their assets and dignity. We need the truth about governmental manipulation of statistics and information in general.
We need the truth about Unipolar globalism and the deep state hiding in plain sight. We need the truth about attempted government and corporate manipulation of us via the mass media. We want the truth about Brexit, we want the truth about the EU, we want the truth about the functioning of military industrial complex and its role in all of this. We want the truth about how corrupted neoliberal and neoconservative governments and capitalism have actually become.
All we want is the truth. Once that truth is revealed and established we can start to view the world with clear eyes and help rebuild it honestly with justice for all.
So now we need to build a comprehensive list of all the things we want the truth about, get our truth seeking governments elected and start going through all the secret records. We will prosecute the war criminals as we expose them. If it proves that Bush and the Neocons knew about 9/11 and let it happen as acceptable collateral damage to get the political momentum to justify the invasion of Iraq and prosecute their war on socialism in the Middle East, then they will be held to full account.
Where there is corruption we will expose them and we will hold the guilty to full account. But we will also be merciful in our judgements because the true quality of a society is best judged by the quality of its mercy and we are deplorably merciful because we abhor power, war, violence, social conflict, poverty and human suffering everywhere and will erase the conditions for their possibility in principle and in showing the fallacies of the terms of such discredited practices.
We want the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth and that is our only demand for global human justice.
Zero Redaction
Vote Deplorably
* * * * *
Thank you, Simon, for proposing such a revolutionary manifesto.
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Tuesday, January 15, 2019

France's Ghosts of '68: General Strike vs. Macron and the Technocrat Elites

The Paris elites and their enablers may find that the next general strike won't immobilize Paris, it will strangle Paris from the periphery.
Eleven months ago, I posited in The Ghosts of 1968 (2/14/18) that the idealistic hope that mass demonstrations could trigger real reform had expired. The mass demonstrations of the gilets jaunes (yellow vests) in 2018 dramatically reinvigorated the topic.
I don't see the yellow vest uprising as idealistically fueled; it's fueled by desperation and what Francis Fukuyama termed the working classes' "perception of invisibility" in a recent essay (Against Identity Politics (Foreign Affairs, Sept/Oct. 2018), a view echoed by French geographer / author Christophe Guilluy who said that "the French people are using the gilets jaunes to say we exist."
Guilluy: "Not only does peripheral France fare badly in the modern economy, it is also culturally misunderstood by the elite. The yellow-vest movement is a truly 21st-century movement in that it is cultural as well as political. Cultural validation is extremely important in our era.
One illustration of this cultural divide is that most modern, progressive social movements and protests are quickly endorsed by celebrities, actors, the media and the intellectuals. But none of them approve of the gilets jaunes. Their emergence has caused a kind of psychological shock to the cultural establishment. It is exactly the same shock that the British elites experienced with the Brexit vote and that they are still experiencing now, three years later."
Interviewer: How have the working-classes come to be excluded?
Guilluy: "All the growth and dynamism is in the major cities, but people cannot just move there. The cities are inaccessible, particularly thanks to mounting housing costs. The big cities today are like medieval citadels. It is like we are going back to the city-states of the Middle Ages. Funnily enough, Paris is going to start charging people for entry, just like the excise duties you used to have to pay to enter a town in the Middle Ages.
The cities themselves have become very unequal, too. The Parisian economy needs executives and qualified professionals. It also needs workers, predominantly immigrants, for the construction industry and catering et cetera. Business relies on this very specific demographic mix. The problem is that ‘the people’ outside of this still exist. In fact, ‘Peripheral France’ actually encompasses the majority of French people."
Interviewer: What role has the liberal metropolitan elite played in this?
Guilluy: We have a new bourgeoisie, but because they are very cool and progressive, it creates the impression that there is no class conflict anymore. It is really difficult to oppose the hipsters when they say they care about the poor and about minorities.
But actually, they are very much complicit in relegating the working classes to the sidelines. Not only do they benefit enormously from the globalised economy, but they have also produced a dominant cultural discourse which ostracises working-class people.
The middle-class reaction to the yellow vests has been telling. Immediately, the protesters were denounced as xenophobes, anti-Semites and homophobes. The elites present themselves as anti-fascist and anti-racist but this is merely a way of defending their class interests. It is the only argument they can muster to defend their status, but it is not working anymore.
Now the elites are afraid. For the first time, there is a movement which cannot be controlled through the normal political mechanisms. The gilets jaunes didn’t emerge from the trade unions or the political parties. It cannot be stopped. There is no ‘off’ button. Either the intelligentsia will be forced to properly acknowledge the existence of these people, or they will have to opt for a kind of soft totalitarianism."
Mobilizing 80,000 heavily armed "security forces" is more like hard totalitarianism, justified, of course, by a fatuous claim of defending "the social order," i.e. the complete domination of elites.
But the French elites are discovering the disconcerting reality that it's impossible to defend every traffic-speed camera, every bank, etc. from sabotage.
The class analysis of the current crisis is now coming into focus: a reversal of polarity from the 1968 general strike of elite students and labor unions. Fifty years ago, the students of the elite Paris universities garnered the support of the labor unions and this combined force nearly toppled the government with a general strike.
Now, students of the elite Paris universities are complicit supporters of the technocrat elite, as the most fervent hope of most of these students is to nail down a position in the technocrat elite threatened by the yellow vest dissenters.
The labor unions are also missing in action, as they are now adjuncts of the ruling elites, feeding at the same trough of tax revenues and corporate globalization-financialization profits.
The gilets jaunes / yellow vests are a working class revolt against the elites and those who identify with the elites: the fake-progressive hipsters, the aspiring technocrats and the comfortably secure state unions, all of whom are now on the elite side of the barricades.
The Paris elites and their enablers may find that the next general strike won't immobilize Paris, it will strangle Paris from the periphery. The unions which were on the democratic side of the barricades 50 years ago may find their identification with the ruling elite challenged, and they'll be forced to either side with the authentic working class (yellow vests) in a general strike or throw their support behind the undemocratic technocrat elites that run France for their own benefit.
The coming general strike may not echo 1968: rather than a grand confrontation that invites the elites' brutal paramilitary suppression, the working class dissenters may wage a guerrilla / asymmetric warfare campaign of sabotage and fleeting demonstrations that exhausts the paramilitary "security forces" and increases the political and financial costs of the elites' suppression.
The fake-progressive hipsters claiming to be anti-fascist are themselves the anti-working class fascists, and they're finally being called out on their self-serving hypocrisy.
"On Tuesday, the person picked to lead the country's planned "great debate" on the issues resigned over her €14,666 monthly salary (£13,200; $16,800)" which is $200,000 annually, roughly seven or eight times the average worker's salary.
That's the class division in a nutshell. The fake-progressive technocrats are skimming $200,000 a year to defend an indefensible undemocratic neofeudal system of exploitation that handsomely benefits the few at the expense of the many.
My book Money and Work Unchained is now $6.95 for the Kindle ebook and $15 for the print edition. Read the first section for free in PDF format.


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Monday, January 14, 2019

As Germany and France Come Apart, So Too Will the EU

If we follow the logic and evidence presented in these seven points, we are forced to conclude that the fractures in France, Germany and the EU are widening by the day.
When is a nation-state no longer a functional state? It's an interesting question to ask of the European nation-states trapped in the devolving European Union. Longtime correspondent Mark G. recently posed seven indicators of dissolving national sovereignty; here's his commentary:
"RE: The Ghosts of 1968 (February 14, 2018):
In France the "Ghosts of 1968" have become the Poltergeists of 2018. This looks like another real watershed in European and world history. Once again Parisian mobs have appeared and have collectively realized they now hold the real power. And their issues are all anti-EU (European Union) and anti-NWO. (New World Order)
I'm honing my German Collapse Scenario as more data flows in, as it is in ever-faster and larger quantities. 'Germany' will implode in parallel with the EU.
So-called 'states' with:
1. no effective military forces
2. no control of their own borders
3. no control of their currency and banks
4. a government with a 'diverse' population in which the majority either has no loyalty to Berlin (recent 'refugee' immigrants) or has dropped its loyalty (large parts of Bavaria and Baden-Wurttemberg), and which is also losing the allegiance of the many eastern European immigrants in Germany. These people are among the most energized opponents of the 'refugee' influx.
5. Fast rising anarchy and lawlessness by the recent 'refugee' immigrants, and which is well known to the population, as are the official orders to the police to minimize crime statistics reporting by not opening official cases.
and
6. A mass media believed by no one due to the bald lies it broadcasts 24/7 daily about numbers 1-5.
...will soon cease to exist. This is confirmed by:
7. The continuing spiral of the ruling post WWII political parties into their own political black holes. CDU/CSU on the right and SDP on the left have all lost their hold on the modern German population.
The biggest joke of all is that Theresa May is negotiating the terms of "Brexit" from the EU with a political corpse and not a viable polity.
Another round or lap is coming soon. Personally I think the only thing staving off another eurozone banking crisis is the absolute certainty that no imaginable German government can currently agree to the slightest external concession without risking an internal political collapse.
Thus all the various Eurozone elites involved are refraining from provoking such a crisis for calculated narrow reasons. This leaves it to a European mob in some capital to initiate it by confronting a national government with either internal political collapse or re-entering EU-wide monetary and fiscal conflict with the ECB/EU gang.
And yes, I'm sure you spotted the next part. Poland and Hungary acting on behalf of the Phoenix Rising Ersatz Austro-Hungarian Empire will twist the EU's tail at that time as hard as they can for maximum regional advantage."
The fracturing of Germany is conventionally viewed as somewhere between implausible and impossible, and the same can be said of France and Germany drifting apart and the EU dissolving: the mainstream is committed to presenting Germany, the German-French alliance, the euro and the EU as rock-solid.
Yet if we follow the logic and evidence presented in these seven points, we are forced to conclude that the fractures in France, Germany and the EU are widening by the day, and that the ceaseless propaganda spewed by the ruling elites isn't mending the fractures or restoring the illusion of stability.
(Regarding the French yellow vest dissenters: the 80,000 mobilized security forces are intentionally seeking to incite violence to justify crushing the yellow vest dissenters with massive paramilitary force: French Democracy Dead or Alive?)
In the long run of history, the apparent solidity of 20 or 30 years can shatter very rapidly as populations under increasing financial and political stress default to much more enduring divisions and loyalties.
My book Money and Work Unchained is now $6.95 for the Kindle ebook and $15 for the print edition. Read the first section for free in PDF format.


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Sunday, January 13, 2019

The Decline and Fall of the European Union

This exhaustion of the neocolonial-neofeudal model was inevitable, and as a result, so too is the decline and fall of the European integration/exploitation project.
That a single currency, the euro, would fracture rather than unite Europe was understood long before the euro's introduction as legal tender on January 1, 2002. The euro, the currency of 19 of the 28 member states of the European Union, is only one of the various institutions tying the member nations of the European union together, but it is the linchpin of the financial integration touted as one of the primary benefits of EU membership.
Skepticism of the benefits of EU membership is rising, as citizens of the member nations are questioning the surrender of national sovereignty with renewed intensity.
The technocrat elite that holds power in the EU is attempting to marginalize critics as populists, nationalists or fascists, overlooking the untidy reality that the actual source of tyranny is arguably the unelected bureaucrats of the EU who have taken on extraordinary powers to strip the citizenry of member states of civil liberties (i.e. the right to dissent) and of meaningful political enfranchisement.
As I have patiently explained since 2012, the underlying structure of the EU is neocolonialism, specifically, neocolonial-financialization. Stripped of artifice, the financial institutions of the EU core have colonized the EU periphery via the euro and the EU and imposed a modernized system of extractive serfdom on the citizenry of the core and periphery alike.
To understand the neocolonial-financialization model, we must revisit the classic model of colonialism. In the old model of Colonialism, the colonizing power conquered or co-opted the Power Elites of the region, and proceeded to exploit the new colony's resources and labor to enrich the core or center, i.e. the Imperial nation and its ruling elites.
This traditional model of colonialism was forcibly dismantled in the 1940s-1960s. Former colonies established their political independence, a process that diminished the wealth and control of former colonial powers.
In response, global financial powers sought financial control rather than political control. This is the key dynamic of the Neocolonial-Financialization Model(May 24, 2012), which substitutes the economic power of financialization (debt, leverage and speculation) for the raw power of conquest and political control.
The main strategy of financialization is: extend cheap credit to those with limited access to capital. Those with limited access to capital will swallow the bait and willingly agree to onerous conditions.
Then, when the credit expansion reaches levels that cannot be supported, the lenders demand collateral and/or favorable trade and financial concessions.
These tactics have been well-documented in books such as The Shock Doctrine: The Rise of Disaster Capitalism and Confessions of an Economic Hit Man.
But the economic pillaging of former colonies has limits, and as a consequence the global financial powers developed the Neocolonial Model, which turns these same techniques on one's home region.
Thus Greece and other capital-poor European nations were recognized as the periphery that could be exploited by the core, and the euro was the ideal tool to exploit the economies of nations which could never have generated credit/housing bubbles without the wide-open spigots of cheap credit flooding their economies.
In Neocolonialism, the forces of financialization are used to indenture the local Elites and populace to the financial core: the peripheral "colonials" borrow money to buy the finished goods manufactured in the core economies, enriching the Imperial Elites with A) the profits made selling goods to the debtors B) interest on credit extended to the peripheral colonies to buy the core economies' goods and "live large", and C) the transactional skim of financializing peripheral assets such as real estate and State debt.
In essence, the French and German banks colonized Europe's periphery nations via the financializing euro, which enabled a massive expansion of debt and consumption in the periphery. The banks and exporters of the core extracted enormous profits from the periphery via this expansion of debt and consumption.
The assets and income of the periphery are flowing to the core as interest on the private and sovereign debts that are owed to the core's money-center private banks.
Note how little of the Greek "bailout" actually went to the citizenry of Greece and how much was interest paid to the financial powers. The core has stripped Greece of collateral and political independence, just as the colonial powers of the 19th century stripped the African and Indo-Asian regions of income, assets and political independence.
This is not just the perfection of neocolonialism but of neofeudalism as well.The peripheral nations of the EU are effectively neocolonial debtors of the core, and the taxpayers of the core nations are now feudal serfs whose labor is devoted to making good on any financialization schemes that go bad.
Neocolonialism benefits both the core's financial Aristocracy and the periphery's oligarchies. This is ably demonstrated in the essay Misrule of the Few: How the Oligarchs Ruined Greece.
The EU has finally reached the endgame of the Neocolonial-Financialization Model. There are no more markets to exploit with financialization, no more assets to strip, and the serfs (a.k.a. yellow vests) of the core are tiring of being stripmined in service of the EU kleptocracy.
At this point, the financial Aristocracy has an unsolvable dilemma: writing off defaulted debt also writes off assets and income streams, for every debt is the core's asset and income stream. When all those phantom assets are recognized as worthless, the system implodes.
This exhaustion of the neocolonial-neofeudal model was inevitable and as a result, so too is the decline and fall of the European integration/exploitation project.
Recent podcasts:
Jonathon Twombly and I discuss The Everything Bubble: Its Effect on The Current Market and Real Estate Investing
My book Money and Work Unchained is now $6.95 for the Kindle ebook and $15 for the print edition. Read the first section for free in PDF format.


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