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The “Oil Curse” and Splashy PR Announcements of Oil Production Cuts

The “Oil Curse” and Splashy PR Announcements of Oil Production Cuts

It’s not just the price of oil that matters: how much disposable income consumers have left to buy more goods and services matters, too.

The Oil Curse (a.k.a. The Resource Curse) refers to the compelling ease of those blessed with an abundance of oil/resources to depend on that gift for the majority of state/national revenues. The risks and demands of developing a diverse, globally competitive economy don’t seem worth the effort when the single-source wealth of oil offers such a low-risk bounty of revenues.

This dependence becomes a curse when the market value of the oil/resources plummets. Having come to depend on that seemingly inexhaustible source of massive revenues, even states that have set aside prudent reserves soon find their expenses cannot align down to diminished oil revenues without unbearable political/social pain.

The ideal solution to this problem is to jawbone oil prices higher by splashily announcing major cuts in oil production and then ignoring the proposed cuts to pump as much oil as possible to restore spending to politically viable levels.

The problem is every other oil producer is pursuing the same game plan and so production doesn’t actually decline. As global demand continues sagging in a global recession, oil supply remains at high levels. Since oil and other commodities are priced on the margin, even modest misalignments of supply and demand can generate huge swings in price.

There is no real enforcement of heavily promoted production cuts. The pressure on every oil producer is to assure the world they’re complying to cover the reality that they’re not actually cutting production because they can’t afford to lose any more revenues.

The price of oil appears to be reflecting the global recession that’s baked into receding stimulus and liquidity and higher inflation

…click on the above link to read the rest…

 

No Such Thing As An Objective Journalist: Notes From The Edge Of The Narrative Matrix

No Such Thing As An Objective Journalist: Notes From The Edge Of The Narrative Matrix

Listen to a reading of this article:

I feel like we haven’t been talking enough about the fact that US government agencies were just caught intimately collaborating with massive online platforms to censor content in the name of regulating the “cognitive infrastructure” of society. The only way you could be okay with the US government appointing itself this authority would be if you believed the US government is an honest and beneficent entity that works toward the benefit of the common man. Which would of course be an unacceptable thing for a grown adult to believe.

It’s still astonishing that we live in a world where our rulers will openly imprison a journalist for telling the truth and then self-righteously bloviate about the need to stop authoritarian regimes from persecuting journalists.

Look at this scumbag:

Look at him. Can you believe this piece of shit? The gall. The absolute gall.

There is no such thing as unbiased journalism. If someone tells you they are unbiased they are either knowingly lying, or they are so lacking in self-awareness that you should not listen to them anyway.

The divide is not between biased journalists and unbiased journalists, it’s between journalists who are honest and transparent about their biases and journalists who are not. There are no unbiased journalists. There are no unbiased people. You’re either honest about this or you’re not.

Of course journalists should try to be as fair and honest as they can. It’s just the epitome of childlike naivety to believe that western mainstream journalists do this.

…click on the above link to read the rest…

Leaked Docs Reveal Shocking Extent Of DHS “Disinfo” Collusion With Twitter, Facebook

Leaked Docs Reveal Shocking Extent Of DHS “Disinfo” Collusion With Twitter, Facebook

In August, Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg admitted on the Joe Rogan podcast that the FBI approached the company warning of “Russian propaganda” shortly before the Hunter Biden laptop story broke at the NY Post.

“Basically, the background here is the FBI, I think, basically came to us– some folks on our team and was like, ‘Hey, just so you know, like, you should be on high alert…  We thought that there was a lot of Russian propaganda in the 2016 election. We have it on notice that, basically, there’s about to be some kind of dump of that’s similar to that. So just be vigilant,” Zuckerberg told Rogan.

Now, leaked documents provided to The Intercept reveal that government collusion with big tech goes much deeper.

The effort began in 2018, after former President Donald Trump signed the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency Act in the wake of several high-profile hacking incidents, forming a new wing of DHS devoted to protecting critical national infrastructure.

The Department of Homeland Security is quietly broadening its efforts to curb speech it considers dangerous, an investigation by The Intercept has found. Years of internal DHS memos, emails, and documents — obtained via leaks and an ongoing lawsuit, as well as public documents — illustrate an expansive effort by the agency to influence tech platforms.

The work, much of which remains unknown to the American public, came into clearer view earlier this year when DHS announced a new “Disinformation Governance Board”: a panel designed to police misinformation (false information spread unintentionally), disinformation (false information spread intentionally), and malinformation (factual information shared, typically out of context, with harmful intent) that allegedly threatens U.S. interests…

…click on the above link to read the rest…

Advocating World War Three Is Just Mainstream Punditry Now

Advocating World War Three Is Just Mainstream Punditry Now

Listen to a reading of this article:

Mainstream punditry in the latter half of 2022 is rife with op-eds arguing that the US needs to vastly increase military spending because a world war is about to erupt, and they always frame it as though this would be something that happens to the US, as though its own actions would have nothing to do with it. As though it would not be the direct result of the US-centralized empire continually accelerating towards that horrific event while refusing every possible diplomatic off-ramp due to its inability to relinquish its goal of total unipolar planetary domination.

The latest example of this trend is an article titled “Could America Win a New World War? — What It Would Take to Defeat Both China and Russia” published by Foreign Affairs, a magazine that is owned and operated by the supremely influential think tank Council on Foreign Relations.

“The United States and its allies must plan for how to simultaneously win wars in Asia and Europe, as unpalatable as the prospect may seem,” writes the article’s author Thomas G Mahnken, adding that in some ways “the United States and its allies will have an advantage in any simultaneous war” in those two continents.

But Mahnken doesn’t claim a world war against Russia and China would be a walk in the park; he also argues that in order to win such a war the US will need to — you guessed it — drastically increase its military spending.

“The United States clearly needs to increase its defense manufacturing capacity and speed,” Mahnken writes. “In the short term, that involves adding shifts to existing factories. With more time, it involves expanding factories and opening new production lines. To do both, Congress will have to act now to allocate more money to increase manufacturing.”

…click on the above link to read the rest…

Leaked FBI Pamphlet Lists ‘Misinformation’ And ‘Disinformation’ As ‘Election Crimes’

Leaked FBI Pamphlet Lists ‘Misinformation’ And ‘Disinformation’ As ‘Election Crimes’

An FBI “2022 Midterm Elections Social Media Analysis Cheat Sheet” leaked to Project Veritas by an agency whistleblower lists misinformation and disinformation as ‘election crimes.’

The ‘crimes’ are are defined as;

“DISINFORMATION” – False or inaccurate information intended to mislead others. Disinformation campaigns on social media are used to deliberately confuse, trick, or upset the public.

“MISINFORMATION” – False or misleading information spread mistakenly or unintentionally.

Does a Hillary Clinton-approved media blitz disinformation campaign to smear her political opponent as a Russian asset count?

What about “MSM censorship campaigns to suppress damaging information about a candidate” such as Hunter Biden’s laptop?

More via Project Veritas;

Recently, the Biden administration attempted to create the “Disinformation Governance Board” under the Department of Homeland Security. After severe pushback from the public due to free speech concerns, the federal government pulled the plug on this idea.

In another section of the leaked document labelled “Things to Consider,” the FBI reminded its agents that the First Amendment and Fourth Amendment exist. Both amendments are in the Bill of Rights and protect Americans’ rights to free speech and against “unreasonable” searches or seizures.

The Bureau also flagged the potential for “Voter/Ballot Fraud” in this election, an activity that some have attempted to rule out as a threat to the American electoral system.

Waiting For The Fall

Waiting For The Fall

It’s been a busy couple of weeks, hasn’t it? A Pfizer executive admitted under oath that all those claims that the Covid vaccine would protect you from catching Covid had no data at all backing them.  Inevitably, corporate media flacks are now insisting at the top of their lungs, in the teeth of ample evidence, that nobody ever made the claims in question. Ukrainian agents used a truck bomb to damage the bridge that links Crimea to Russia; Russia, which has supposedly been running out of missiles since about a week since their forces invaded Ukraine, responded by sending a flurry of the missiles they aren’t supposed to have any more to blow up another round of Ukrainian targets, focusing on the energy and transport facilities the Ukrainians are going to need to face the massive winter offensive Russia is all too clearly preparing..

The rate of inflation here in the US has reached levels not seen since Jimmy Carter’s day, while the economy in the US and globally is reeling in ways that normally signal a serious recession on the way.  The mix of inflation and recession is called “stagflation,” for those of you who don’t remember the Seventies, and it’s no fun. The prices of fossil fuels are swinging all over the place, up because supplies are dwindling, down because a failing economy means that fewer people will be able to afford to burn them.  Oh, and Greta Thunberg has come out in favor of nuclear power, because it’s less ecologically damaging than burning coal.  (As you’d expect from a child of privilege, the one thing she can’t possibly imagine is getting by with a lot less.)

…click on the above link to read the rest…

We’re Being Pushed Toward Nuclear War On A Fiction: Notes From The Edge Of The Narrative Matrix

We’re Being Pushed Toward Nuclear War On A Fiction: Notes From The Edge Of The Narrative Matrix

Listen to a reading of this article:

We’re being driven toward nuclear war on the completely fictional claim that Putin is a Hitler-like megalomaniac who’s just invading countries completely unprovoked, solely because he is evil and hates freedom, and won’t stop invading and conquering until he’s stopped by force.

The news media aren’t telling people about the western aggressions which led to this war. They’re not telling people the US is keeping this war going with the stated goal of weakening Russia and is rejecting peace talks and refusing to push for peace. All people are being told is that Putin is another Hitler who won’t listen to reason and only understands violence. The world’s two nuclear superpowers are being pushed closer and closer to direct military confrontation based on a complete fiction which omits mountains of facts.

To participate in this madness is indefensible. It is indefensibly immoral to foist a fictional version of events upon a trusting populace in order to manufacture consent for more and more aggressive acts of brinkmanship with a nuclear superpower. These people are depraved.

“No no you don’t understand, if we weren’t being told constantly by the media that this proxy war needs our full support and censoring the voices who dispute this and using giant troll armies to swarm and silence anyone who questions this, we might fall victim to propaganda.”

“You’re not anti-war, you’re just anti-AMERICAN wars,” said the person who is loudly cheerleading America’s proxy war in Ukraine.

Warmongers don’t like being called warmongers when they support a US proxy war that was deliberately provoked by the US and is being sustained by the funding and facilitation of the US with the explicit goal of weakening a longtime geopolitical rival of the US…

…click on the above link to read the rest…

The Washington Post Dabbles in Orwell

The Washington Post Dabbles in Orwell

In scrubbed piece about Edward Snowden, the Bezos Post offers a preview of how history will be re-written

Russian President Vladimir Putin granted citizenship on Monday to Edward Snowden, a former security consultant who leaked information about top-secret U.S. surveillance programs and is still wanted by Washington on espionage charges.

The story added:

Snowden’s disclosures, published first in The Washington Post and the Guardian, were arguably the biggest security breach in U.S. history. The information revealed top-secret NSA surveillance as part of a program known as PRISM and the extraction of a wide range of digital information.

Snowden is America’s most famous revealer-of-secrets, and the way he’s talked about has evolved to an extreme degree in less than a decade, showing how quickly a story about security overreach can be flipped into an argument for more vigilance. The press, which once worked with Snowden in its proper role as a bulwark against government excess, is effectively an arm of the state now, as is shown again in this absurd episode.

This article began as an aggressive rewrite of history and the Post’s own views, but underwent numerous alterations after it attracted criticism online yesterday.

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

 

New Zealand Prime Minister Calls for a Global Censorship System

New Zealand Prime Minister Calls for a Global Censorship System

C-Span screengrab

New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern is the latest liberal leader to call for an international alliance to censor speech. Unsatisfied with the unprecedented corporate censorship of social media companies, leaders like Hillary Clinton have turned from private censorship to good old-fashioned state censorship. Speech regulation has become an article of faith on the left. Ardern used her speech this week to the United Nations General Assembly to call for censorship on a global scale.

Ardern lashed out at “disinformation” and called for a global coalition to control speech. After nodding toward free speech, she proceeded to lay out a plan for its demise through government regulation:

But what if that lie, told repeatedly, and across many platforms, prompts, inspires, or motivates others to take up arms. To threaten the security of others. To turn a blind eye to atrocities, or worse, to become complicit in them. What then?

This is no longer a hypothetical. The weapons of war have changed, they are upon us and require the same level of action and activity that we put into the weapons of old.

We recognized the threats that the old weapons created. We came together as communities to minimize these threats. We created international rules, norms and expectations. We never saw that as a threat to our individual liberties – rather, it was a preservation of them. The same must apply now as we take on these new challenges.

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

We’re Being Trained To Worry About ‘Russian Propaganda’ While Drowning In US Propaganda

We’re Being Trained To Worry About ‘Russian Propaganda’ While Drowning In US Propaganda

Listen to a reading of this article:

One of the weirdest, most insane things happening today is the way the entire western world is being trained to freak out about “Russian propaganda” — which barely exists in the west — while ignoring the fact that we are spending every day marinating in billions of dollars worth of US empire propaganda.

CNN has an article out titled “Darya Dugina’s death provides a glimpse into Russia’s vast disinformation machine — and the influential women fronting it” on the recently assassinated daughter of Alexander Dugin, a Russian political thinker of wildly exaggerated influence.

The article uses Dugina’s assassination to further stoke its audience’s ever-growing panic about Russian disinformation, quickly becoming a commentary on Russia’s entire propaganda network without bothering to articulate how Dugina’s death “provides a glimpse” into its workings.

Without the slightest hint of self-reflection or irony, this CNN article about Russian propaganda cites as its two main experts a think tanker from the Atlantic Council’s Digital Forensic Research Lab and a think tanker from the Center for European Policy Analysis (CEPA). The Atlantic Council is a NATO narrative management firm that is funded by NATO, the US government, the UK government, various other US-aligned states, the arms industry, and numerous billionaires. CEPA’s donor list looks similar to the Atlantic Council’s and includes US arms manufacturers and the US government through both the US State Department and the CIA cutout National Endowment for Democracy. Both are used to promote the information interests of the US-centralized power alliance in Europe and North America.

As we’ve discussed previously, the way news media cite corrupt warmongering think tanks to discuss foreign policy without ever mentioning their immense conflicts of interests is plainly journalistic malpractice…

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

‘We live in an Orwellian hell-scape’: Facebook fact-checks top economist for stating America IS in a recession after Biden refused to admit it

‘We live in an Orwellian hell-scape’: Facebook fact-checks top economist for stating America IS in a recession after Biden refused to admit it

  • Phillip Magness, the research and education director at the American Institute for Economic Research, believes the U.S. is in a recession
  • Economists usually say it is a recession when two successive quarters have seen negative growth: data on Thursday showed the definition had been met
  • The White House is instead relying on an ‘official declaration’ from the the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER), which can be very slow
  • Magness’s post on Facebook about the U.S. being in a recession was fact-checked by Facebook and a warning posted online
  • ‘We live in an Orwellian hell-scape,’ he tweeted. ‘Facebook is now ‘fact checking’ anyone who questions the White House’s word-games’ 

Facebook placed a ‘fact-checking’ label on a post written by a top economist stating that the United States is now in a recession – a move he termed ‘Orwellian’.

Two consecutive quarters of negative growth is the standard definition of a recession, and Phillip Magness, the research and education director at the American Institute for Economic Research, posted on Facebook a commentary about the country now being in a recession.

The post – which is no longer visible – was marked by Facebook’s fact checkers as being misleading.

‘We live in an Orwellian hell-scape,’ he tweeted.

‘Facebook is now ‘fact checking’ anyone who questions the White House’s word-games about the definition of a recession.’

Biden on Thursday (pictured) insisted that the country was not in a recession, despite new data showing a second consecutive quarter with negative growth

Biden on Thursday (pictured) insisted that the country was not in a recession, despite new data showing a second consecutive quarter with negative growth

Phillip Magness, an economic historian, believes the U.S. is in recession - but the White House disagrees

Phillip Magness, an economic historian, believes the U.S. is in recession – but the White House disagrees

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

Ukraine Is The Most Aggressively Trolled War Of All Time: Notes From The Edge Of The Narrative Matrix

Ukraine Is The Most Aggressively Trolled War Of All Time: Notes From The Edge Of The Narrative Matrix

Listen to a reading of this article:

There’s a lot going on in America and the people are very stressed out and frightened, but don’t worry, there’s nothing the US government won’t do to make sure more High Mobility Artillery Rocket systems get to Ukraine.

Rest assured Americans: no matter how dark things may seem right now, no matter how insecure and uncertain you may feel, you can sleep soundly knowing your government is moving mountains around the clock to make sure the Ukraine war becomes a strategic quagmire for Moscow.

The Ukraine war is the single most aggressively trolled issue I’ve ever witnessed. As soon as it started, Twitter was full of brand new accounts swarming anyone who uttered wrongthink about Ukraine, and now there are entire extremely coordinated troll factions working to scare people away from criticizing empire narratives about this war. It’s plainly very inorganic, so it’s good to recall what we know about the trolling operations of western militaries.

 

 

 

 

So the western empire is responding to a war that was caused by NATO expansion by greatly expanding NATO, at the same time we learn that the Biden administration doesn’t even believe Ukraine has any chance of winning that war. This is going great, guys. Good job everyone.

Sure the worst case scenario of all this brinkmanship with Russia is nuclear war, but on the other hand the best case scenario is securing planetary domination for an empire that has spent the 21st century killing people by the millions in wars of aggression for power and profit. Totally worth the risk!

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

Silicon Valley Corporations Are Taking Control Of History

Listen to a reading of this article:

Twitter has imposed a weeklong suspension on the account of writer and political activist Danny Haiphong for a thread he made on the platform disputing the mainstream Tiananmen Square massacre narrative.

The notification Haiphong received informed him that Twitter had locked his account for “Violating our rules against abuse and harassment,” presumably in reference to a rule the platform put in place a year ago which prohibits “content that denies that mass murder or other mass casualty events took place, where we can verify that the event occured, and when the content is shared with abusive intent.”

“This may include references to such an event as a ‘hoax’ or claims that victims or survivors are fake or ‘actors,’” Twitter said of the new rule. “It includes, but is not limited to, events like the Holocaust, school shootings, terrorist attacks, and natural disasters.”

That we are now seeing this rule applied to protect narratives which support the geostrategic interests of the US-centralized empire is not in the least bit surprising.

Haiphong is far from the first to dispute the mainstream western narrative about exactly what happened around Tiananmen Square in June of 1989 as the Soviet Union was crumbling and Washington’s temporary Cold War alignment with Beijing was losing its strategic usefulness. But we can expect more acts of online censorship like this as Silicon Valley continues to expand into its role as guardian of imperial historic records.

This idea that government-tied Silicon Valley institutions should act as arbiters of history on behalf of the public consumer is gaining steadily increasing acceptance in the artificially manufactured echo chamber of mainstream public opinion. We saw another example of this recently in Joe Lauria’s excellent refutation of accusations against Consortium News of historic inaccuracy by the imperial narrative management firm NewsGuard.

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

“A Magnet for Conspiracy Theories”: Wikipedia Kills Entry for Hunter Biden’s Investment Company

“A Magnet for Conspiracy Theories”: Wikipedia Kills Entry for Hunter Biden’s Investment Company

YouTube screenshot

Wikipedia editors are under fire this week for removing the entry for Rosemont Seneca Partners, the investment company connected to Hunter Biden and his alleged multimillion dollar influence peddling schemes. The site bizarrely claimed that the company was “not notable.” The timing itself is notable given the new disclosure that Hunter Biden’s business partner, Eric Schwerin, made at least 19 visits to the White House and other official locations between 2009 and 2015. That included a meeting with then-Vice President Joe Biden despite Biden’s repeated claim that he knew nothing about his son’s business dealings. Schwerin was the president of Rosemont Seneca.

Wikipedia has been accused of raw bias in removing the entry at a time when interest in the company is at its peak, including the possibility of an indictment of Hunter Biden over his financial dealings.  Rosemont Seneca is one of the most searched terms for those trying to understand the background on the Biden business operations.

Yet, an editor “AlexEng” wrote that the company was simply “not notable” — an absurd claim reminiscent of the recent claim by Atlantic Magazine’s writer Anne Applebaum that she did not cover the scandal because it simply was “not interesting.”

Alex wrote: “This organization is only mentioned in connection with its famous founders, Hunter Biden and Christopher Heinz.” That itself is an odd statement. It is mentioned as one of the key conduits of alleged influence peddling money. Alex added that “keeping it around” ran the risk of the page becoming “a magnet for conspiracy theories about Hunter Biden.” It is that last comment that I found most concerning as part of this decision.

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

The Media is the Number One Cause of War Since 1898

In 1895, a 32-year old entrepreneur in New York City bought a failing newspaper and hatched a bold plan to turn it around.

The newspaper industry was cutthroat, especially in New York. There were at least 16 other daily newspapers in circulation, and there was fierce competition for readers’ attention.

But the young entrepreneur had an idea: thrill readers with tales of death, destruction, and brutality in the Cuban War for Independence against Spain.

Cuba was a Spanish colony at the time, but revolutionary forces had been fighting for independence for several years. Few people in the US really cared about Cuba. But the new publisher vowed to make them care.

His name was William Randolph Hearst. And his paper, the New York Morning Journal, constantly thrust Cuba in his readers’ faces.

Their stories were full-blown sensationalism. By early 1898, Hearst’s Journal was printing outright fabrications of atrocities committed by Spanish troops in Cuba, in an effort to whip up public support for the United States to join the war.

The government played along. While ‘war crimes’ did not yet exist, US President William McKinley escalated tensions by accusing Spain of atrocities, saying in a speech that “the civilized code of warfare has been disregarded.”

Then, on February 15, 1898, a US naval vessel known as the Maine exploded and sank in Havana Harbor off the coast of Cuba. 268 sailors died.

Several investigations were conducted, and to this day there is still nothing conclusive explaining how the explosion took place. It’s entirely possible that the explosion was caused by the Maine’s on-board fuel.

But Hearst (along with many other papers) jumped to publish stories claiming the Maine was sunk by a Spanish torpedo, and they continued agitating for the US to join the war.

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

Olduvai IV: Courage
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Olduvai II: Exodus
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