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The End of Democracy?

QUESTION: Marty, I know you reported on the Canadian bill to suspend elections during a pandemic, do you think that is in the cards going ahead?

HS

ANSWER: I found it shocking that they would actually introduce such legislation in the first place. But what we have to understand is that this is part of the Schwab 2030 Agenda. I do not see how they would pull that off on all levels. The model is what they created in the EU where neither the European Commission nor the President is subject to popular election. They allow people to vote for MPs but they have no power to overrule the legislation from the Commission. So is that a real democracy or even a republic in the EU? It is nothing different from China.

I also do not see how they would be able to eliminate local politicians. As long as their power is confined, then they would retain that to pretend it was still a democracy. History repeats because the passions of people have never changed. Rome overthrew its “king” in 509BC and thereafter nobody would ever have the title of king. That is also in the American Constitution. Article I. Section IX Clause VIII states clearly:

No Title of Nobility shall be granted by the United States: And no Person holding any Office of Profit or Trust under them, shall, without the Consent of the Congress accept of any present, Emolument, Office, or Title, of any kind whatever, from any King, Prince, or foreign State.

Now, when the Republic was overthrown and Imperial Rome began, the Emperors, not being kings in name, still created a monarchy that was inherited by their family the very same as a king…

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No Time for Castles: From Closed to Open Democracy

For proponents of deliberative democracy, today’s representative regimes offer nothing more than illusion. Real democracy means people’s power, and achieving it requires out-of-the-box thinking. We spoke to political theorist Hélène Landemore about her proposed alternative of open democracy and what this would look like at local, European, and global levels. As citizens’ assemblies in France and Ireland offer valuable lessons, and with events from Brexit to the pandemic expanding the horizons of what is possible, there is no time like the present for utopian thinking.

Green European Journal: Voting, elections, and parliaments are universally considered symbols of democracy. But amid the wider debate on the crisis of democracy, you argue that the problem is the system of representative democracy itself. Can you explain?

Hélène Landemore: It helps to go back to the history of representative regimes in Europe. They originate in what historians call “representative government”: governments where the law is made by elected legislators. These forms of government only began to be called democracies as of circa 1830 in the US and France, and 1870 in Great Britain. But the reality is that they were designed as an alternative to democracy as much as to monarchy. For their founders, democracy meant mob rule. It was chaotic and overly direct. Fear of the people characterises representative democracies from the outset. Yes, they were built on principles of popular sovereignty and consent – but that isn’t sufficient for them to qualify as democracies. The everyday law-making process was carried out by elected aristocracies with the best and most virtuous at the helm and the people as a silent sovereign occasionally nodding from afar.

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Canada – Suspend Elections During Pandemics = Trudeau for Life?

 

In Canada, there is a bill claiming it is unreasonable to ask people to put their lives in danger to vote during a pandemic. Thus, all elections should be suspended during a pandemic that never ends.

” in the opinion of the House, holding an election during a pandemic would be irresponsible, and that it is the responsibility of the government to make every effort to ensure that voters are not called to the polls as long as this pandemic continues.”

Will The Trump Team Prove A Global Conspiracy Or Will Dominion Sue For Defamation?

As Jonathan Turley writesthe team alleged a global, Communist-backed conspiracy to “inject” and “change” votes through the use of the Dominion computer system. It was exhausting and breathtaking. I was critical of the press conference as being long on heated rhetoric and short on hard evidence. Dominion issued a statement categorically denying the allegations.

The question is whether Dominion itself will now sue.  The company denied the allegations but I often measure such denials by whether anyone actually sues.  Dominion could do so and force the Trump team to reveal the evidence supporting their allegations or face potentially significant liability. I assume that counsel like Sidney Powell would not make such allegations without proof, but the press conference did not make such evidence public. But these are not just colorful but criminal allegations against named companies and by implication corporate officials and political allies.

Trump campaign counsel repeatedly accused Dominion and its officers of criminal conduct and business improprieties. Those are categories of “per se defamation” under the common law. No special damages must be shown in such per se cases. Individual officers could bring defamation claims and the company itself could bring a business disparagement action.

Businesses can be defamed like individuals if the false statement injures the business character of the corporation or its prestige and standing in the industry. In Dun & Bradstreet, Inc. v. Greenmoss Builders, Inc., 472 U.S. 749 (1985) the Supreme Court allowed a business to sue a credit reporting agency for defamation where the agency mistakenly reported that the business had filed for bankruptcy.

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No Matter Who Wins

Modern elections—despite their social and political importance—have become more like sporting events than referendums around ideas. We so intensely identify with our partisan tribe, that we focus on the slogans, the rooting against the ‘other guy’ and other us-vs-them dynamics, and often lose sight of the issues, the context, and how ‘winning’ for our country (and world) might actually be influenced by our choices.

We are inherently tribal, after all. Of all of our inherited ancestral heuristics, defending our (historically small) tribe and ostracizing/rooting against the other tribe is one of the strongest human universals. In fact, perhaps humans’ best quality – cooperation and collaboration – was a byproduct of the strong unity born out of common threats, accessing surplus, and tribal warfare. We cooperate – for the good of our group – and for tens/hundreds of thousands of years, this meant survival.

Fast forward to November 2020, USA and the four year inflection point where half the country is rooting for Joe Biden and the other half (roughly) for Donald Trump – in our minds we know this is an important guidepost for our collective future, but we approach this week with similar temperament and behavior as a Packer/Viking pre-game tailgate.

We are now in the liminal space between our nation’s long history and future.  Facts and expertise matter less by the day. Emotions and tribal affiliations focus our attention on the ‘cars’ instead of looking at the road ahead of us. Later this week 50% of our population will be elated and the other 50% will be angry. And most of both camps will be variously: righteous, anxious and uncertain, and perhaps violent.

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What We Don’t Elect Matters Most: Central Banking and the Permanent Government

What We Don’t Elect Matters Most: Central Banking and the Permanent Government

We’re Number One in wealth, income and power inequality, yea for the Fed and the Empire!

If we avert our eyes from the electoral battle on the blood-soaked sand of the Coliseum and look behind the screen, we find the powers that matter are not elected: our owned by a few big banks Federal Reserve, run by a handful of technocrats, and the immense National Security State, a.k.a. the Permanent Government. These entities operate the Empire which hosts the electoral games for the entertainment and distraction of the public.

The governance machinery controlled by elected representatives is tightly constrained in what it can and cannot do. It can’t do anything to stop the debasement of the nation’s currency, which is totally controlled by the Politburo of the Fed, nor can it do much to limit the Imperial Project, other than feel-good PR bits here and there.

The president wields vast powers but even the president is powerless to stop the debasement of the nation’s currency and the enrichment of bankers, financiers, corporations, etc., who fund the campaigns of the gladiators, oops I mean politicians.

If we set aside the term Deep State and simply call it the unelected machinery of governance (Permanent Government), we get a clear picture of its scope and power. Presidents, senators and representatives come and go, but the machinery of Empire grinds on, decade after decade.

A great many people and places in America don’t matter to the Fed or the Permanent Government, and so they’ve been abandoned to their fates. The darlings of the Fed and Empire are clustered in Silicon Valley and other urban hubs where the technological and financial machinery of global hegemony are fabricated and maintained.

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Politics in the Age of the Coronavirus. What can we learn from the Italian Elections? 

Politics in the Age of the Coronavirus. What can we learn from the Italian Elections?

Sep 20, 2020. The president of Italy, Sergio Mattarella, votes at the Italian regional elections. In these elections, the first in the age of the COVID, the victory went to the Left largely by means of over a better strategy in managing people’s perceptions of the epidemic. Here, I report some personal considerations on how this result may tell us something about the coming US presidential election.

The regional elections of this weekend in Italy were held after a debate still dominated by the COVID epidemics. Although the virus itself was not mentioned so much in the speeches and in the political programs, the rest of the debate was shallow and lacking ideas on both sides. The Left was unable to propose anything better than “restarting growth,” and the Right little more than vague talks of “Italexit.”

So, the COVID epidemic hovered like a ghost over everything that was said and done. The Left coalition, the parties supporting the current government, had placed their bets on appearing tough on the epidemic. The government-controlled media tried to reinforce this perception by doing their best to terrorize citizens with daily catastrophistic reports. This strategy had a risk: if the elderly were to stay at home for fear of being infected at the polling station, then a disaster was looming for those parties that relied on their vote: in particular the Democratic Party (the former communists).

The Right, instead, never found a coherent strategy on the epidemic. Sometimes, it tried to convince its electorate that the epidemic was brought to Italy by black immigrants from Africa, but that worked only on people already convinced that all evils in Italy arrive from Africa.

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A Lesser Evil: Notes From The Edge Of The Narrative Matrix

A Lesser Evil: Notes From The Edge Of The Narrative Matrix

I really don’t mean to be a pest about this but we are still trapped on a planet where people without functioning empathy centers are waving literal armageddon weapons around in the name of a made-up concept called unipolarism. We should probably put a stop to that.

~

If you see two separate mainstream political parties, it looks like one is the lesser evil. If you see two oligarchic sock puppets held by the same oligarchy, it looks like they’re both being used to bully you into consenting to an entire system which isn’t designed to serve you.

If you see the latter, what is the correct response? What is the correct response to someone saying you must beg them to punch you with their left hand or they’ll punch you a bit harder with their right? Is it to beg for the left fist? Or is it to knock your abuser the fuck out?

When the oligarchy tells you “Vote for my left party or my right party will take away your civil rights”, the correct response is not bowing to its demands, nor voting right-wing out of spite, nor even merely voting third party. The only correct response is to tear down the oligarchy.

~

Democrats: Here’s a half-dead piece of beltway flotsam held together by nothing but Aricept and crazy glue who’s been pushing for wars, austerity and the erosion of civil liberties since before most of you were born.

Progressives: I bet we can move him to the left.

~

Q: What is the Republican Party?

A: An organization which assures Americans of conservative sensibilities that the status quo is working fine.

Q: What is the Democratic Party?

A: An organization which assures Americans of liberal sensibilities that the status quo is working fine.

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2020 Is The Year The Unseen Becomes Seen

2020 Is The Year The Unseen Becomes Seen

2020 is the year of Julian Assange’s extradition trials, the Kafkaesque proceedings by which the US government is attempting to imprison the WikiLeaks founder for the rest of his life as punishment for exposing US war crimes. Assange started an innovative leak publishing outlet on the premise that corrupt power can be fought with truth, and corrupt power responded by silencing and jailing him. They’ve proved him right about everything, right in front of everyone.

2020 is the year people began protesting police brutality, and police responded with ferocious and widespread acts of brutality. The massive deluge of video footage from these brutal police responses went viral all over the world. The argument about police brutality culture in the US police state was won clearly and decisively, right in front of everyone.

2020 is the year the most powerful government on earth responded to a pandemic virus with the largest upward transfer of wealth in history, leaving massive global corporations with record-high stocks while killing small businesses and throwing the rank-and-file public to the wolves after handing some of them a paltry $1200, all while failing spectacularly to address the threat of the virus itself. This financial abuse is happening right out in the open, right in front of everyone.

2020 is the year this same government’s electoral process is being exposed in front of everyone for the sham it has always been, as two corrupt racist right-wing warmongering dementia patients who’ve both been accused of rape are placed head-to-head in what will inevitably be the single dumbest presidential race in the nation’s history. Neither of these two men are capable of forming a coherent sentence, and their presidential debates will make them a laughing stock of the whole world, right in front of everybody.

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“Deep State” Dudley Doubles Down: “Explains” What He Really Meant In Scandalous Anti-Trump Op-Ed

“Deep State” Dudley Doubles Down: “Explains” What He Really Meant In Scandalous Anti-Trump Op-Ed

There is a saying, when in a hole stop digging.

Unfortunately for former Goldman managing director and NY Fed president, Bill “let them eat iPads” Dudley, that is a saying he is not familiar with, and one week after his stunning Bloomberg op-ed in which he advocated the Fed to prevent Trump’s 2020 re-election by sending the economy in a recession, resulting in a brutal response from virtually everyone who slammed Dudley’s musings as the final proof that the Fed was in fact a political animal, one which is more powerful than the executive branch in its ability to pick and choose presidents, Dudley is out with an “explainer”, seeking to “answer” some of the main questions posed by his “provocative” piece.

After reading “What I Meant When I Said ‘Don’t Enable Trump“, let’s just say that Dudley fails in explaining why he said is not what he said, and if anything he has successfully doubled down, giving Trump even more ammunition to throw the book at the political Fed for not cutting rates fast enough as the president has been demanding for months, and for eventually taking the blame for the coming economic and market crash.

Dudley’s letter, written in rhetorical Q&A format, begins by asking himself what motivated him to write this article. His answer is two fold:

First, President Trump’s trade war with China was increasing uncertainty about how global trading rules would evolve, what tariffs would be imposed, what changes firms might need to make to their global supply chains, and what the downside risks might be for the U.S. economy. Just a few days before the article was published, the president ordered U.S. firms to pull out of China.

 …click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

“Toto, I Don’t Think We’re in Kansas Anymore”

“Toto, I Don’t Think We’re in Kansas Anymore”

Recently, an American colleague commented to me, “We no longer live in a democracy but a dictatorship disguised as a democracy.”

Is he correct? Well, a dictatorship may be defined as “a form of government in which absolute authority is exercised by a dictator.”

The US today is not be ruled by dictatorship (although, to some, it may well feel that way.)

But, if that’s the case, what form of rule does exist in the US?

At its formation, the founding fathers argued over whether the United States should be a republic or a democracy. Those founders who later formed the Federalist Party felt that it should be a democracy – rule by representatives elected by the people. Thomas Jefferson, who created the Democratic Republican Party, argued that it should be a republic – a state in which the method of governance is democracy, but the principle of governance is that the rights of the individual are paramount.

He argued that, “Democracy is nothing more than mob rule, where fifty one percent can vote away the rights of the other forty nine.”

At that time, Benjamin Franklin has been credited as saying, “Democracy is two wolves and a lamb voting on what to have for dinner.”

Very well stated.

As Americans still legally vote, and it may well be that the voting is not altogether rigged, the US could be regarded as a democracy. Of course, to be accurate, it could also be defined as a bureaucracy – rule by officialdom, and/or a plutocracy – rule by the very rich. Both of these descriptions are undeniably accurate.

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How America’s Dictatorship Works

How America’s Dictatorship Works

Trump could not have become America’s President if he had not won the “vote” of his nation’s second-largest political donor in 2016, casinos-owner Sheldon Adelson.

In publicly recorded donations, as of 25 December 2018, Adelson and his wife donated$82,522,800 to Republican candidates in 2016, and this amount doesn’t include any of the secret money. Of that sum, it’s virtually impossible to find out how much went specifically to Trump’s campaign for President, but, as of 9 May 2017, the Adelsons were publicly recorded as having donated $20.4 million to Trump’s campaign.

Their impact on the Presidential contest was actually much bigger than that, however, because even the Adelsons’ non-Trump-campaign donations went to the Republican Party, and the rest went to Republican pro-Trump candidates, and the rest went to Republican PACS — and, so, a large percentage (if not all) of that approximately $60 million non-Trump-campaign political expenditure by the Adelsons was boosting Trump’s Presidential vote.

The second-largest Republican donor in 2016 was the hedge fund manager Paul Singer, at $26,114,653. It was less than a third, 31.6%, as large as the Adelsons’ contribution. Singer is the libertarian who proudly invests in weak entities that have been sucked dry by the aristocracy and who almost always extracts thereby, in the courts, far larger returns-on-investment than do other investors, who have simply settled to take a haircut on their failing high-interest-rate loans to that given weak entity.

Singer hires the rest of his family to run his asset-stripping firm, which is named after his own middle name, “Elliott Advisors,” and he despises any wealthy person who won’t (like he does) fight tooth-and-nail to extract, from any weak entity, everything that can possibly be stripped from it. His Elliott Advisors is called a “vulture fund,” but that’s an insult to vultures, who instead eat corpses. They don’t actually attack and rip apart vulnerable struggling animals, like Singer’s operation does.

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Europe is Burning

Johannes Vermeer The soldier and the laughing girl 1657

There will be elections for the European Parliament on May 23-26 2019. They will likely change the face of Europe more than anything has done since the EU was founded. That is not some wild prediction. Many European countries have held elections since the last European elections in 2014, and just about all had outcomes that shook up domestic political ratios.

In most cases, countries went from traditional parties to newly founded ones. France erased the Socialists and center-right in 2017, and the final round of the presidential elections was between Marine Le Pen’s Front National and Emmanuel Macron’s brand-new En Marche. Macron won sort of by default, because France as a country would never have voted for Le Pen.

In Italy, M5S and Lega have taken over. In Germany, Merkel’s CDU/CSU coalition lost bigly though it remained the biggest party, but Angela lost her ‘socialist’ SPD partner which gave up so much it didn’t want to be in government anymore. In Spain, Mariano Rajoy’s center right lost enough to cede power to the Socialists who came up tops because they played a smart game, not because the Spanish wanted it to rule.

We don’t have to go through all 27/28 different countries to establish that there are almost tectonic shifts happening all over, away from traditional parties and towards whoever showed up without insanely extreme views. And if you think this move is now completed, you may want to think again.

It’s amusing to realize that the country with the biggest political shift, the UK, is the only one that still hangs on to its traditional parties, and seeks its protest voice in a different way, namely through Brexit. That is, Britain shows it can get no satisfaction from the EU, whereas in the other major EU nations the dissatisfaction is projected onto domestic parties.

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If America Stopped Destroying The World, The Bad Guys Might Win

If America Stopped Destroying The World, The Bad Guys Might Win

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told reporters on Saturday that the government under Venezuela’s recently re-inaugurated president Nicolas Maduro is “illegitimate”, and that “the United States will work diligently to restore a real democracy to that country.”

Pompeo’s remarks, which were echoed by Trump’s National Security Advisor John Bolton, are interesting for a couple of reasons. The first is because Venezuela’s presidential election in May of last year (which incidentally was found to have been perfectly legitimate by the international Council of Electoral Experts of Latin America) was actively and aggressively meddled in by the US and its allies. The second is that while the US government is openly broadcasting its intention to keep interfering in Venezuela’s political system, it continues to scream bloody murder about alleged Russian interference in its own democratic process two years ago.

What is the difference between the behavior of the United States, which remains far and away the single worst offender in foreign election meddling on the planet, and what Russia is accused of having done in 2016? According to a comment made by former CIA Director James Woolsey last year, it’s that the US interferes in foreign democracies “for a very good cause.”

And that’s really the only argument that empire loyalists have going for them on this subject. The US is different because the US has moral authority. It’s okay for the US to continue to interfere in the political affairs of foreign nations while it would be an unforgivable and outrageous “act of war” for a nation like Russia to do the exact same thing, because the US is countering the interests of the Bad Guys while Russia is countering the interests of the Good Guys. Who decided who the Good Guys and Bad Guys are in this argument? The US.

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How the US Spent Billions to Change the Outcome of Elections Around the World: A Review

How the US Spent Billions to Change the Outcome of Elections Around the World: A Review

How the US Spent Billions to Change the Outcome of Elections Around the World: A Review
How the US Spent Billions to Change the Outcome of Elections Around the World: A Review

The U.S. military state overthrows democratically-elected governments that it deems to be a threat to corporate interests.

“There is plenty of evidence that the United States is the most depraved and dangerous “meddler” in the affairs of other nations that history has ever known.”

Dan Kovalik is a labor and human rights lawyer, but most of all he is an anti-imperialist and an author of three books. Kovalik’s first two books tackled the specific US war drives against Russia and Iran. His third installment, The Plot to Control the World: How the US Spent Billions to Change the Outcome of Elections Around the World, addresses the broad scope of US election meddling abroad. The book provides much needed political and ideological life support to an anti-war movement in the U.S that has been rendered nearly invisible to the naked eye.

The Plot to Control the World is as detailed in its critique of U.S. imperialism as it is concise. In just over 160 pages, Kovalik manages to analyze the various ways that the U.S. political and military apparatus interferes in the affairs of nations abroad to achieve global hegemony. He wastes no time in exposing the devastating lie that is American exceptionalism, beginning appropriately with the U.S. imperialist occupations of Haiti and the Philippines at the end of the 19thcentury and beginning of the 20th. The U.S. would murder millions of Filipinos and send both nations into a spiral of violence, instability, and poverty that continues to this day.

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Olduvai IV: Courage
In progress...

Olduvai II: Exodus
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