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Opinion from a Libertarian ViewPoint

David Wurmser, Key Iraq War Architect, Advising Trump on Iran

Posted by M. C. on January 17, 2020

Like Pennywise the Dancing Clown, war people keep coming back

https://theintercept.com/2020/01/16/david-wurmser-iran-suleimani-iraq-war/

David Wurmser was a longtime advocate of war with Iraq in the Bush administration. Eventually, he got what he wanted, and it was a total disaster. Now, Wurmser again has the ear of a president — this time, Donald Trump — and his sights are set firmly on Iran.

An influential neoconservative in President George W. Bush’s White House who became a significant force behind the push for war with Iraq in 2003, Wurmser has recently been serving as an informal adviser to the Trump administration, according to new reporting from Bloomberg News. In that capacity, Wurmser helped make the case for the recent drone strike that assassinated Iranian Gen. Qassim Suleimani.

David Wurmser again has the ear of a president — this time, Donald Trump — and his sights are set firmly on Iran.

Wurmser wrote several memos to then-national security adviser John Bolton in May and June of 2019. In the documents, according to Bloomberg, Wurmser argued that aggressive action by the U.S. — such as the killing of Suleimani — would, in Wurmser’s words, “rattle the delicate internal balance of forces and the control over them upon which the [Iranian] regime depends for stability and survival.”

The significance of this is two-fold. First, while it was already clear that the neoconservative movement has powerfully influenced the Trump administration, Wurmser’s role on Iran is further evidence of the sway that neoconservatism still holds on the U.S. right — despite the catastrophic invasion of Iraq and Trump’s disavowal of the war. Second, it demonstrates that neoconservatives such as Wurmser still cherish a peculiar theory about Iranian society.

After Bush’s reelection in 2005, the hard-right faction of his administration turned its attention to Iran. These officials had always wanted regime change in the Islamic Republic, but now some of them believed that a full-scale invasion would not be necessary to bring this about. A 2005 article in the New Yorker by Seymour Hersh quoted a government consultant who described the perspective of these officials as being that a bombing campaign against Iran’s nuclear facilities would spur a revolution led by “secular nationalists and reformers.” The consultant summarized their view: “The minute the aura of invincibility which the mullahs enjoy is shattered, and with it the ability to hoodwink the West, the Iranian regime will collapse.”

 

This theory, so popular among neoconservatives, has always been bizarre: Nations generally become more right-wing when under attack. For instance, after the destruction of the World Trade Center in 2001, Americans did not demand that Bush be impeached and Dennis Kucinich move into the Oval Office.

We should definitely consider the possibility that the neocons don’t know what they’re talking about. And yet, here we are, with those self-same neocons again helping shape our foreign policy in delusional and dangerous ways.

The continued self-confidence of neoconservatives like Wurmser is particularly odd given how all their beliefs were proven disastrously wrong in Iraq…

the rest here

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The Sad Tale of Greta the Pawn – by Robert Ringer

Posted by M. C. on January 17, 2020

These adults have clearly saturated her with the notion that the
world is doomed as a result of “climate change,” and that climate
change, in turn, is caused, first and foremost, by fossil fuels.

Obviously, it was ridiculous for Time to name Greta Thunberg its Person of the Year, but I doubt many people take this award any more seriously than they do the Nobel Peace Prize.  Regardless, it’s not Greta’s fault that Time chose her for its annual award.  It is the fault of her parents, teachers, the media, left-wing politicians, and liberal activists who have stoked her anger and her macabre view of life. 

https://robertringer.com/the-sad-tale-of-greta-the-pawn/

by Robert Ringer

As everyone expected, Greta Thunberg, 16-year-old Swedish teenager, was chosen as Time magazine’s Person of the Year.  Greta is a young lady who has taken a considerable amount of abuse from climate-change skeptics, which is very sad given that she purportedly suffers from Asperger’s Syndrome, a challenging disorder usually caused by an injury to the brain during pregnancy or birth.

Technically speaking, Asperger’s Syndrome falls under the ASD (autism spectrum disorders) umbrella, which includes a wide-ranging number of subsets, such as autism, high-functioning autism, Asperger’s Syndrome, non-verbal learning disability (NVLD), and many iterations in between.

I have a pretty good layman’s understanding of autism spectrum disorders, and I can say unequivocally that these conditions almost always make life extremely difficult — often unbearably so — for both victims and their families.

The one characteristic common to all ASD disorders is a lack of social skills.  In the musical West Side Story, there’s a song titled “Gee, Officer Krupke” with a verse that goes like this:

Gee, Officer Krupke,
We’re down on our knees,
‘Cause no one wants a fella with
A social disease.

You can’t help but smile when you listen to the words to this humorous ditty, but whenever I hear the above verse, I think of children with autism spectrum disorders, because ASD really is like having a “social disease.”  It’s a very difficult problem for an afflicted child, because it subjects him to teasing and bullying by both classmates and teachers, which in turn makes caring for a child on the ASD spectrum a frustrating, fulltime job for parents.

Knowing the pain ASD children endure and the difficulty they have interacting with others, watching Greta Thunberg’s angry speech at the United Nations was all too familiar to me.  At a minimum, her anger seemed completely out of proportion to the occasion (“How dare you?”), and her words demonstrated an extremely depressing outlook on life.

It is certainly understandable why children afflicted with a condition on the autism spectrum are angry, given the amount of rejection and frustration they experience, and in that regard I feel a great deal of compassion for Greta.  Nevertheless, it’s obvious that her anger and depressing outlook have been made much worse by negative thoughts put into her mind by the influential adults in her life.

These adults have clearly saturated her with the notion that the world is doomed as a result of “climate change,” and that climate change, in turn, is caused, first and foremost, by fossil fuels.  Since the minds of ASD victims function in a very primitive, concrete manner, feeding them such negative thoughts only worsens their anger issues.

Obviously, it was ridiculous for Time to name Greta Thunberg its Person of the Year, but I doubt many people take this award any more seriously than they do the Nobel Peace Prize.  Regardless, it’s not Greta’s fault that Time chose her for its annual award.  It is the fault of her parents, teachers, the media, left-wing politicians, and liberal activists who have stoked her anger and her macabre view of life.

Unfortunately, President Trump chose to chime in on Greta Thunberg’s newfound fame, which has brought an angry backlash from many quarters.  Like so many of his questionable tweets, there’s no doubt he would have been better off to have avoided commenting about Greta, but I think it’s a stretch to believe he was attacking her disability, because I doubt he even knows much about Asperger’s Syndrome.

Regardless, those who are upset about Trump’s comments regarding Greta Thunberg fail to take into account that she is not speaking as a disabled child, but as a political activist, which casts her in a whole different light.  Of course, the reason she’s a political activist is because not only are her parents and teachers pushing her in that direction, she is also being used as a pawn by the leftwing media and Radical Leftists.

It’s similar to the radical Islamic strategy of using women and children as human shields when attacking their enemies.  It’s a cowardly, age-old tactic employed by radicals of all stripes and, unfortunately, a significant percentage of the population can always be counted on to fall for it.

It’s very painful for a parent to come to grips with the reality that their child’s condition can never be cured or made less painful by medication or a medical procedure.  However, with nurturing, teaching, patience, and a positive, low-stress environment, children afflicted with ASD disorders have a much better chance of adapting to the rigors of life and achieving a reasonable degree of happiness.

Unfortunately, that is not likely to happen in Greta Thunberg’s case, because she appears to be trapped in a depressing, low-information environment.  It’s hard enough to try to educate low-information liberals who do not have disabilities, so the prospects for replacing the poison in young Greta’s mind with actual facts and a positive outlook on life are slim.

It’s a sad irony that because her thoughts are being guided by the Radical Left adults in her life, it is highly unlikely that this anguished teenager will ever be in a position to learn the facts about the climate-change hoax, the very subject she is so angry about.  What the adults in Greta Thunberg’s life have done to her is nothing less than emotional child abuse, and the thought that she is unlikely to be exposed to information that could help her become a less stressed, happier person is a human tragedy.

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Taking Bernie and the Radical Left Seriously – by Robert Ringer

Posted by M. C. on January 17, 2020


It may be hard for normal people to
comprehend, but envy loves blood even more than it loves free stuff.

Radical Left revolutionaries hate the fact that most people will not cast their ballots for an agenda that calls for them to surrender their money and freedom, which is why they consider violent revolution to be a viable option. 

https://robertringer.com/taking-bernie-and-the-radical-left-seriously/

by Robert Ringer

As you are undoubtedly aware, Uncle Bernie’s minions are threatening to burn down cities if their favorite commie doesn’t get the Democratic nomination.  A Project Veritas undercover video features a man by the name of Kyle Jurek, described by Sanders’ Iowa field director as one of the campaign’s “top tier organizers,” saying, “F…ing cities burn” (if Donald Trump is reelected) and “I mean, we don’t have a lot of time left.  We have to save f…ing human civilization.”

He went on to say that “If Bernie doesn’t get the nomination, or it goes to the second round at the DNC convention, f…ing Milwaukee will burn.  It’ll start in Milwaukee, and then, when the police push back on that, other cities will just f–ing (loud noise).”

Threats and violence from the Radical Left were totally predictable, of course.  A year ago, in Part II of my article evaluating the Democratic presidential candidates, this is what I said about Sanders:

I doubt [Sanders] can win the Democratic nomination — and certainly not the presidency — but this time around I expect him and his rabid supporters to be out for blood now that they realize Horrible Hillary and the Dirty Dems screwed them out of the 2016 nomination.

Now, suddenly, a lot of people are starting to take Bernie Sanders — an entertaining amalgam of Karl Marx, Vladimir Lenin, and Krusty the Clown — seriously.  Bearing an eerie resemblance to Horrible Hillary mentor Saul Alinsky, Bernie is a crotchety old goat who sincerely believes that a majority of Americans would welcome socialism/communism into their lives.

Make no mistake about it, when Bernie rages on about redistribution-of-wealth schemes, he’s not just some idealistic old fool.  On the contrary, he gives hope to millions of Americans who actually do dream of a Bolshevik-style uprising in in the United States.  Trust me, these people would love nothing more than to see blood running in the streets.  It may be hard for normal people to comprehend, but envy loves blood even more than it loves free stuff.

To envy-crazed Democrats like Kyle Jurek, Bernie represents much more than just a humorous sideshow in the fight for the Democratic nomination.  As the first Democratic candidate to openly embrace socialism, he is nothing short of a heroic cult figure.  Best everyone start taking Bernie seriously, because he is serious — every bit as serious as all the other lefties who have preached revolution of the masses over the past 150 years.

Radical Left revolutionaries hate the fact that most people will not cast their ballots for an agenda that calls for them to surrender their money and freedom, which is why they consider violent revolution to be a viable option.  They realize that people don’t give up their freedom easily, so they believe it’s their moral duty to save people from their own bad judgment.

It’s also why, at a time when a majority of Americans have let it be known that they want to move away from government control, government regulations, and government theft, immature, low-information students, along with their low-information, even more immature college professors, are singing the praises of free … Free … FREE!  Not free as you and I understand the word, but free in the sense of having other people pay for the things you want.

No question about it, free will always be music to the ears of a significant percentage of the population, and freeloaders could care less who pays the bills.  These are the folks who are feelin’ the Bern and are euphoric about Sanders’ chances of winning the Democratic nomination and ascending to the White House.

Not only is the envy-based anger of the left every bit as strong as the MAGA anger that brought Donald Trump to White House, the Radical Left has one big advantage:  To them, Marxism is a religious crusade that demands a willingness to resort to any means necessary to bring about change that is to their liking.  So, even though zombie Democrats are looking quite crazed and moronic right now, it would be wise not to underestimate them.

On the other side of the political coin, when a conservative gets up every morning, he thinks about how to get ahead in the world by providing value in the marketplace.  He may not consciously think about it that way, but it’s instinctive for normal people to strive to better their existence.  The last thing on their minds is trying to figure out ways to gain control of other people’s lives.

Leftists believe time is on their side because of their undying commitment to foist their Machiavellian agenda on mentally lethargic Americans.  Not just the most extreme leftists, but even so-called moderate liberals.  In fact, moderate liberal is an oxymoron, because liberalism, as the word is now commonly used, is an extreme ideology that calls for control over other people’s lives.

That said, there’s no doubt in my mind that Trump will win in a landslide in November, and I expect Republicans to take back the House and increase their numbers in the Senate as well.  That, however, should not bring about a collective sigh of relief, because the long term is not so certain.

Why?  Because those on the Radical Left are masters at playing the long game.  Which is why you can count on Democrats to keep pressing forward with their Radical Left agenda even after the election is over, regardless of the outcome.  Remember, unlike unprincipled, weak-kneed Republicans, Democrats never — ever — let up.

Thus, the most important question of our time is:  Which side will prevail over the long term?  Will the MAGA people fall into the comfort zone and go the way of the Tea Partiers, or will they stay strong and ramp up their efforts to push back against Washington?  The one thing you can count on is that the Radical Left will not fall into the comfort zone and will try to — you guessed it — overturn the 2020 election.

 

 

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Trump Steps Back From the Edge. Neocons Rage Accordingly — Strategic Culture

Posted by M. C. on January 17, 2020

https://www.strategic-culture.org/news/2020/01/15/trump-steps-back-from-the-edge-neocons-rage-accordingly/

 Matthew Ehret

 

Trump’s response to the attack on two US military bases showcase a hopeful about face on a dark age agenda which many thought could lead nowhere but World War III in the immediate days following Soleimani’s murder on January 3.

Immediately after the Iranian counter-attacks occurred on Wednesday morning at the same hour of Soleimani’s assassination, Iran’s Foreign Minister stated: “Iran took & concluded proportionate measures in self-defence under Article 51 of the UN Charter targeting base from which cowardly armed attack against our citizens & senior officials were launched. We do not seek escalation or war, but will defend ourselves against any aggression.” Iran’s retribution was more moderate than many analysts imagined as fore notice was delivered to the Iraqi government 30 minutes before rockets were launched giving American military personnel in the bases ample time to seek shelter.

In Trump’s remarks the following day, the President stated: “Iran appears to be standing down, which is a good thing for all parties concerned and a very good thing for the world… ISIS is a natural enemy of Iran. The destruction of ISIS is good for Iran, and we should work together on this and other shared priorities.”

Although Trump’s speech characterized Iran as a “major supporter of terrorism” and Gen. Soleimani as a “top terrorist”, his assertion that a common interest exists between the USA and Iran in the combat of ISIS is a spectacular break from the neocon agenda. This break is also one of many in a long line of internal struggles emanating from the corridors of American power in the days since Soleimani’s murder. This includes the memo written to the Iraq government by William Seely, commanding general of the Iraq Task Force saying: “We respect your sovereign decision to order our departure.” Seely’s memo created a major crisis amongst the radical war hawks like Mark Esper and Mark Milley who raced to deny the memo’s validity.

Recent revelations published in the Wall Street Journal demonstrating the incredible back channel discussion set up by Trump through the Swiss embassy in Tehran in the hours after Solemenei’s murder also play into this “movement of sanity” within the USA.

The Paradox of America Resolved

This contradictory behaviour is undoubtedly not so confusing for leading figures among Eurasia’s intelligentsia who are not ignorant to the battle occurring within America between nationalists who genuinely wish to end “the forever wars” in the Middle East vs those Pax Americanists embedded throughout the neoconservative and neo-liberal establishments who would rather burn the earth than abandon their dark age ideology. Trump’s many calls for positive relations with Russia and China over the past 3 years terrify these groups, and this potential US-Russia-China alliance has represented a real threat which today’s London-steered impeachment debacle, and years of Russia-gating has always aimed to derail.

With the impeachment bill now sitting in the republican-dominated Senate, the neocons loyal to the Military Industrial Complex which Trump has so loudly criticized have major leverage on the President and are using it. If you are thinking “why would any republican ruin their careers by supporting a democrat-driven impeachment bill against a republican leader?” then you haven’t realized that the drive for war with Iran (as well as Russia and China) is not a matter of “practical politics” for our later day fanatics of the evangelical pre-millennial garb like John Hagee or Benny Hinn who sincerely believe it is man’s duty to usher in Armageddon and fulfill their twisted view of prophecy. Nor is it an issue for their Israeli counterparts who believe essentially in the same prophecy with the small exception that the Savior’s arrival amidst the fires of war will be occurring for the first time rather than the 2nd. If you are reading this thinking “certainly no one could be so nuts”, then let this televised prayer led by Rev. John Hagee and Benny Hinn cause you to think twice:

Bill Kristol, a leading figure behind the neocon cult and co-author of the dystopian Project for a New American Century Manifesto has already poured tens of millions of dollars into billboards, commercials and lobbying teams gunning for Trump’s impeachment. Kristol tweeted on October 17, 2019 that “If Trump is not impeached and removed, the corruption will get even worse, the White House even more lawless, the violations of norms even more routine. The case for impeachment isn’t merely retrospective; it’s prophylactic. And it isn’t merely just; it’s urgent.”

The most recent commercial promoting Trump’s impeachment which Kristol’s think tank Republicans for the Rule of Law released raised the argument that since republicans supported Nixon’s impeachment in 1973, republicans should impeach Trump today.

This argument obviously overlooks the problem that while Nixon actually appeared to have committed crimes, nothing even approximating illegal activity has occurred in Trump’s case.

Things are not as black and white as many believed until recently. Iran’s recent military exercises with Russia and China have demonstrated clearly in the minds of saner Americans that no war with Iran is possible without taking Russia and China on as well. Putin’s brilliant maneuvers in the Middle East have led to the destruction of the Anglo-American plot to grow radical Islam as a geopolitical tool first against the Soviet Union in the 1980s and then against nation states more generally since the Soviet Union’s collapse. For this reason, Putin’s enemies throughout the neocon world and British intelligence have never forgiven him. Although China has not brought much military might to bear in the Middle East, the Belt and Road Initiative has provided a gateway to a durable peace which cannot be overlooked, as BRI projects in Iraq, Afghanistan, Syria, Lebanon and beyond have given the Middle East a new chance for a future.

The question still remains whether or not Trump can continue to move away from the WWIII agenda and into this positive alliance.

 

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An Introduction to Q – American Thinker

Posted by M. C. on January 17, 2020

Q is new to this mushroom. Time to shake off the fertilizer.

https://www.americanthinker.com/articles/2020/01/an_introduction_to_q.html#.Xh5gMSjDfms.email

By Deborah Franklin

Who is Q? What is Q? And, perhaps most importantly, why is Q?  Q and the ever-growing worldwide movement it’s inspired have been the objects of fascination, mockery and hatred, but of surprisingly little serious analysis.

Q first appeared in October 2017 on an anonymous online forum called 4Chan, posting messages that implied top-clearance knowledge of upcoming events. More than 3,000 messages later, Q has created a disturbing, multi-faceted portrait of a global crime syndicate that operates with impunity. Q’s followers in the QAnon community faithfully analyze every detail of Q’s drops, which are compiled here and here.

The mainstream media has published hundreds of articles attacking Q as an insane rightwing conspiracy, particularly after President Trump seemed to publicly confirm his connection to it.  At a North Carolina rally in 2019, Trump made a point of drawing attention to a baby wearing a onesie with a big Q.

In recent weeks, the tempo of Trump’s spotlighting of Q has accelerated, with the President retweeting Q followers twenty times in one day. Trump has featured Q fans in his ads and deployed one of Q’s signature phrases (“These people are sick”) at his rallies. The President’s lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, has also retweeted Q followers.

Q has noted that the media never asks Trump the obvious question: What do you think of Q? To Q followers, the reason they don’t ask is obvious. They’re afraid of the answer.

In the meantime, Q’s influence continues to spread. Protestors in Hong Kong, Iran, and France have held up Q signs and chanted Q quotes. Q’s revelations are uniting people all over the world who want freedom.

If you’re unfamiliar with Q or only know it through the media’s attacks, I’d like to provide a brief introduction to this extraordinary phenomenon. I’ve followed Q since the first drop, and I’ve grown increasingly impressed by the accuracy, breadth and depth of Q’s messages. Q followers were prepared long in advance for the easing of hostilities with North Korea, the deflation of the mullahs of Iran, and the discovery of Ukraine as a hotbed of corruption for American politicians. They knew a great deal about Jeffrey Epstein’s activities before the public did and anticipate even more shocking revelations to come. As Q likes to say, “Future proves past.” As Q’s predictions come true, they lend retroactive credibility to the entire enterprise.

Q’s followers believe that Q is a military intelligence operation, the first of its kind, whose goal is to provide the public with secret information. Many Q followers think the Q team was founded by Admiral Michael Rogers, the former Director of the National Security Agency and former Commander of US Cyber Command.  Some suspect that Dan Scavino, White House Director of Social Media, is part of the team, because the high quality of Q’s writing has the luster of a communications expert.

Q is a new weapon in the game of information warfare, bypassing a hostile media and corrupt government to communicate directly with the public. Think of Q as a companion to Trump’s twitter. Whereas Trump communicates bluntly and directly, Q is cryptic, sly and subtle, offering only clues that beg for context and connection.

Here’s the way it works: Q posts messages (also known as “drops” or “crumbs”) on an anonymous online forum, which are discussed, analyzed, and critiqued by the board’s inhabitants. (The forum has changed a few times after massive online attacks.) Hundreds of social media accounts then spread Q’s latest posting to worldwide followers who share their research, analysis, and interpretations of Q’s latest information.

I’ve compiled a list of Q’s most famous catch phrases and tried to put them into context. Read the rest of this entry »

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Why Is Congress So Afraid to Use Its War Powers? – Rolling Stone

Posted by M. C. on January 16, 2020

The encounter, Wyden says, is a reminder that there are real and dire consequences to Congress’ inaction. “I’m always struck by how these debates that go on in Washington,” he says, “that seem so sterile compared to when a mom is in front of you in a small town in Oregon, crying because for her, what she wants to know, and what she deserves to know, is if her boy on the other side of the world is going to be safe.”

https://www.rollingstone.com/politics/politics-features/trump-iran-congress-war-powers-soleimani-936260/

It was the rarest of sightings: Last week, a bipartisan majority in the House of Representatives approved a resolution to restrict the president’s ability to go to war with Iran. The vote happened one week after the Trump administration assassinated via drone strike Iran’s top general. Government officials have offered only the flimsiest of evidence to justify the attack while putting the country on the path toward yet another conflict in the Middle East.

What’s so striking about the House’s symbolic rebuke of Trump is that Congress bothered to do it at all. For decades, America’s elected representatives have green-lit bloated defense budgets year after year, allowed Democratic and Republican presidents to wage endless wars around the world, and done little to assert the legislative branch’s authority when it comes to one of the most difficult decisions a lawmaker may face. The last time Congress formally declared a state of war was in 1942 with Bulgaria, Hungary, and Romania. In other words, they’ve all but abdicated their constitutional duty to decide when the country goes to war and with whom.

 

“Our system is not designed to have one person in charge of war,” Rep. Justin Amash, an independent from Michigan who quit the Republican Party last year, tells Rolling Stone. “But that’s the system we now have.”

How did this happen? Why is Congress asleep at the wheel?

On September 18th, 2001, Congress passed legislation authorizing the use of military force against the planners of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, paving the way for the Afghan invasion and hunt for Osama bin Laden. Almost a year later, on October 16th, 2002, Congress passed another Authorization for the Use of Military Force, better known as an AUMF. This one paved the way for President Bush’s war in Saddam Hussein’s Iraq.

But in the years that followed, the scope and meaning of the 2001 and 2002 AUMFs were stretched beyond recognition. They were used by Democratic and Republican administrations to justify interventions on multiple continents and against terrorist organizations and individuals that, in some cases, didn’t exist at the time the two AUMFs were enacted. Instead of pushing back, Congress went mute. With a few lonely exceptions over the years, elected officials from both parties stood idly by as different administrations ordered troops all over the world, often with shifting objectives and no end in sight, costing tens of thousands of American lives and trillions of dollars. “We’ve let the executive walk all over this institution,” says Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.).

There’s a constitutional argument for Congress reclaiming its war powers; there’s also a practical one. Elected members of Congress are the voices of the people back home. Without real debate over whether to declare war, citizens have little say over one of the most serious and consequential decisions a government can make.

“I represent more troops than any other member of this body. I buried one of them earlier today at Arlington,” said Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.), one of Trump’s most ardent supporters in the House, in announcing his intention to vote in favor of the resolution. “If our servicemembers have the courage to fight and die in these wars, Congress ought to have the courage to vote for or against them.”

Interviews with the lawmakers who have resisted endless wars dictated by the White House shed light on why the legislative branch has been reluctant to step up.

Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.), a stalwart progressive, calls a vote to go to war “one of the most difficult votes anyone can make.” Foreign policy is a difficult and unpredictable issue that can sink the careers of politicians with an eye on higher office. Merkley says members of Congress see limited incentive to do their job given the potential consequences.

“There’s a collective group of senators and House members who are like, ‘Well, if we leave this with the president we don’t have to take these tough votes over the use of force,’” he says. “People look back at the vote to authorize the administration to go after Saddam Hussein. Biden probably thinks about that just about every day.”

In 2018, Merkley introduced legislation that would repeal the 2001 and 2002 AUMFs and put a three-year expiration date on future AUMFs. The bill never got out of the Foreign Relations Committee. Still, Merkley continues to speak out about the need for Congress to challenge presidential war powers. “Presidents did not respect the actual language of the AUMFs,” he says, “so we need to explicitly slap them upside the head and restore the role of Congress.”

Rep. Amash, a libertarian who is a critic of runaway defense spending and interventionist foreign policy, says Congress’ silence on war powers is indicative of a broader abdication by rank-and-file lawmakers on most business…

The most recent debate over the Trump administration’s killing of Qasem Soleimani, who led Iran’s elite Quds Force, revealed another possible reason for Capitol Hill’s reluctance to reclaim its authority on war powers: a fear of looking weak. In one example, Rep. Doug Collins (R-Ga.), the top Republican on the prestigious Judiciary Committee, ridiculously accused House Democrats of being “in love with terrorists” for daring to debate (as is their constitutional duty) President Trump’s authority to declare war and launch future attacks on Iran. Collins, who later apologized, wasn’t the only Republican trotting out this tired weak-on-terrorism soundbite…

Sen. Bernie Sanders cited the potential for such attacks as one reason lawmakers have gone silent on war powers. “I think perhaps the answer has been the fear that somebody will be seen as being soft on terrorism, not prepared to defend the troops or whatever,” Sanders says. “But the truth is we have seen under Republican and Democratic administrations Congress not utilizing its responsibilities under the Constitution.”…

The encounter, Wyden says, is a reminder that there are real and dire consequences to Congress’ inaction. “I’m always struck by how these debates that go on in Washington,” he says, “that seem so sterile compared to when a mom is in front of you in a small town in Oregon, crying because for her, what she wants to know, and what she deserves to know, is if her boy on the other side of the world is going to be safe.”

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MoA – The Russian Prime Minister Resigns And No One Knows Why

Posted by M. C. on January 16, 2020

It appears we didn’t see this coming.

Peaceful regime change and no one died. Definitely not a CIA job.

If Russia hacked

https://www.moonofalabama.org/2020/01/the-russian-prime-minister-resigns-and-no-one-knows-why.html#more

Moon Of Alabama

A curious ‘regime change’ happened in Russia today as the Prime Minister Dimitry Medvedev and his whole cabinet resigned.

This morning President Vladimir Putin held his yearly speech to the Federal Assembly of Russia (English transcript). Putin spoke about Russia’s demographic situation, its weaponry and the celebration of the upcoming 75th anniversary of its second world war victory.

But the most important part was about constitutional changes. A summary via TASS:

Putin has suggested a putting up a package of constitutional amendments for a plebiscite. At the same time, the Russian president stated that he sees no grounds to adopt new constitution in Russia.Putin also suggest stipulating the supremacy of the Russian Constitution over international norms in Russia.

“The time has come to make some changes to the nation’s fundamental law that would directly guarantee the priority of the Russian Constitution in our legal space. What does this mean? It means that requirements of international law and decisions of international bodies can only be enforced in Russia to such an extent that does not violate human and civil rights and freedoms and does not violate our Constitution,” Putin emphasized.

It seems that the European Court of Human Rights has pissed off Russia once too often. The court is associated with the Council of Europe which has 47 member states including Russia. It has several times judged in the favor of renegade oligarchs in exile and the ‘western’ supported wannabe opposition in Russia.

Putin then proposed additional changes to the constitution. These were probably the points that led to Medvedev resignation:

Putin agrees that the same person should not hold the post of the head of state for more than two consecutive terms.”I know that our society is debating the constitutional provision that the same person should not hold the office of President of the Russian Federation for more than two consecutive terms. I do not believe that this question is of fundamental importance, but I agree with this,” Putin said.

The TASS interpretation that Putin ‘agrees that the same person should not hold the post of the head of state for more than two consecutive terms’ is not supported by Putin’s statement…

Medvedev is thereby not sidelined but gains a position in which he is Putin’s deputy in important internal and external affairs.

In the evening Putin announced that he appointed Mikhail Mishustin, the head of Russia’s Federal Tax Service, as the new Prime Minister. The 53 year old native of Moscow is practically unknown to the wider public. He is a curious and surprising choice.

Even Russian analysts near to Putin seem not to know if Putin and Medvedev had planned today’s ‘regime change’ or if it was a totally spontaneous move by a pissed off Medvedev. They also seem unsure if Putin wants to leave in 2024 or if he wants to stay for another term.

We are thus left to make our own bets.

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According to a report citing intelligence sources, the FBI ...

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Minding Your Mood – EPautos – Libertarian Car Talk

Posted by M. C. on January 16, 2020

Your mood, how you appear, how you drive…all that info is going somewhere. Like your insurance company for one.

https://www.ericpetersautos.com/2020/01/15/minding-your-mood/

Memory seats are nice. But how about mood minders? In-car sensors that assess your state of mind via eye movements, facial expressions, gestures – even your rising (or falling) heartbeat – and adjust the car accordingly?

Some of this is already here.

A number of new cars come standard with “drowsy driver” monitoring systems. Cameras embedded in the dash watch you as you drive; if the system thinks you’re getting heavy-lidded or distracted, a chime will sound and a warning light (it’s often a coffee cup symbol) comes on.

Soon, it’ll be much more than just a light and a chime.

At the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, the next Great Leap Forward was on display. In addition to cameras watching you, infra-red sensors will soon register your metabolic rate as an indicator of agitation and if the car decides you’re too angry to drive, it pulls itself over.

For saaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaafety! 

Be sure to maintain a vapid smile of contentment at all times – like Winston in Orwell’s 1984 – though even that might not be enough if the car can tell how you’re feeling inside, something even Orwell thought impossible back in 1948, when the novel was written.

This isn’t a dystopian vision. It’s actuality.

A number of new cars know it’s you – specifically – behind the wheel. Not just Driver A. Facial recognition tech scans and identifies you – and then adjusts the seats and so on accordingly.

The car keeps track of your preferences – and probably also your opinions. Think twice about what you say because there may be more than just you and your passenger in the car – and in on the conversation.

Soon, everything that goes on in a new car will be open source.

And so much more.

At CES, evolutions of the tech already deployed were on display. In addition to adjusting the seats, in-car AI can also adjust the drive – mellowing out the suspension settings for more comfort if the car senses your fatigue, increasing or decreasing airflow to perk you up – even auto-shading parts of the windshield to reduce glare on you, specifically.

It can make recommendations about where to eat – when it senses you are hungry – and which route is best (according to its judgement).

All of this is being presented – spoon fed – to “consumers” (a contemptuous term that ought to have aroused anger when it oleaginously began to replace buyers some 30 or so so years ago)  as just another convenience. BMW’s i Interaction EASE, for instance.

Yes – but for whom?…

The autonomous cars which existed until recently were different because their movements were autonomous. They were autonomously controlled by the driver – not the car.

Nothing was monitored. If you couldn’t sleep and decided to go for a midnight drive, no one knew about it – including the car. It simply took you wherever you pointed it, as fast or as slow as you wanted to go.

The inconvenience one paid for this was having to adjust the seats oneself.

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Mini HD 1080P Car DVR Video Driving Recorder Hidden Cam ...

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Who’s To Blame for Flight 752? – LewRockwell

Posted by M. C. on January 16, 2020

But being a superpower means never having to say you’re sorry. So even though the US expressed “deep regret” eight years later and agreed to pay $61.8 million in compensation after the case wound up before the World Court in the Hague, it refused to accept legal liability or issue a formal apology.

Histories are ignored written by the victors.

https://www.lewrockwell.com/2020/01/no_author/whos-to-blame-for-flight-752/

By Daniel Lazare
AntiWar.com

Who’s to blame for downing Ukraine International Airlines Flight 752? Everyone’s pointing the finger at Iran. Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says that it must take “full responsibility,” Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky is demanding an official apology, while even Iranian protesters are calling on Supreme Leader Ali Khameinei to resign.

“Regime change is in the air,” ex-National Security Adviser John Bolton gleefully tweeted. “The people of Iran can see it.” Because Iran fired the missile that killed 176 people, the government must pay the supreme penalty.

But how different things looked three decades ago when the USS Vincennes fired a medium-range surface-to-air missile at an Iranian airliner carrying 16 crew members and 274 passengers over the Strait of Hormuz. No one called on the United States to apologize, and no one demanded that the government be overthrown. To the contrary, there was barely a murmur when Ronald Reagan defended the downing as “a proper defensive action” while Admiral William J. Crowe Jr., chairman of the joint chiefs of staff, said that the ship had done nothing inappropriate.

“It is my judgment, based on the information that is available to us, that the commanding officer conducted himself with circumspection,” Crowe said. He added that Vincennes Captain William C. Rogers “followed his authorities and acted with good judgment and at a very trying period and under very trying circumstances.”

This was despite the fact that the airliner was over Iranian territorial waters, that its radio transmitter was “squawking” on a civilian frequency, and that it was ascending rather than swooping down low for an attack. Even though the admiral said that Rogers was blameless, he struck other navy men on the scene as so aggressive that they began referring to his high-tech ship as “RoboCruiser.”

“Having watched the performance of the Vincennes for a month before the incident, my impression was clearly that an atmosphere of restraint was not her long suit,” a nearby ship commander named David Carlson wrote a year after the incident. “Her actions appeared to be consistently aggressive and had become a topic of wardroom conversation. … The Vincennes was never under attack by Iranian aircraft.”

But being a superpower means never having to say you’re sorry. So even though the US expressed “deep regret” eight years later and agreed to pay $61.8 million in compensation after the case wound up before the World Court in the Hague, it refused to accept legal liability or issue a formal apology.

Compare that to Iranian President Hassan Rouhani’s statement that Flight 752 was a “great tragedy and unforgivable mistake” or Islamic Revolutionary Guard commander Hossein Salami’s emotional confession: “I swear to almighty God that I wished I was on that plane and had crashed with them and burned but had not witnessed this tragic incident.”

At least Iran admits it was wrong whereas the US remains unrepentant…

The pressure on such defense units must have been immense as they scanned the skies for signs of an overwhelming US counterattack. The missile operator had just a few heartbeats to make a choice that could be catastrophic either way.

If so, where does responsibility lie – with the operator or with a superpower that needlessly brought the region to the brink of war in the first place? After all, it was the US that massively violated international law. And it was the US that put Iran in a position in which it had no option but to defend itself even while fearing the worst if it did. Marauders who invade a home are responsible in most states even if the owner responds in ways that are unwise or inappropriate. Why shouldn’t the US be responsible as well?

Yet everyone is too busy blaming the victim to notice the elephant in the sitting room. The real problem is not Iran but a United States that grows more reckless and aggressive by the day. The more the world blames the victim, the more it rewards Trump. And the more it rewards Trump, the more it insures US policy will only grow even more out of control.

The action in the Persian Gulf is not over. In fact, it’s barely begun.

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Police Question USS Vincennes Over MH370 Disappearance

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The Vaccine Cover-up and the Massive Corruption at the Top: This Is a Pharmaceutical Driven Agenda – LewRockwell

Posted by M. C. on January 16, 2020

It is no longer a secret that the added components to vaccines called adjuvants, including aluminum and mercury in many cases, both very toxic, are an extreme health risk. But the vaccine industry would stall and die without the use of adjudants. According to Dr. Martin Howell Friede, Coordinator, Initiative for Vaccine Research, W.H.O.:

The WHO is a tool of the one world government UN. When they admit something they do is bad…it is BAD.

While you are waiting for your doctor take a look at his bulletin board where the childhood vaccine schedule is listed. If that doesn’t scare you, you are brain dead. That list is courtesy of completely unconstitutional mandates from the CDC and the rest of the alphabet organizations listed below.

When we End the Fed we should end the rest of the alphabet overseers.

https://www.lewrockwell.com/2020/01/gary-d-barnett/the-vaccine-cover-up-and-the-massive-corruption-at-the-top-this-is-a-pharmaceutical-driven-agenda/

By

The World Health Organization, (W.H.O.) always suspect, held a global vaccine summit in early December 2019, and some very damning video was leaked and released to the public, and of course, that particular video footage, as observed by Mike Adams here most likely will be banned and removed from YouTube. Why would YouTube remove actual live declarations at a world meeting, unless a cover-up is present? Why would comments from the top members of the W.H.O. at a world conference supposedly about the safety of vaccination be suppressed, unless that factual evidence would harm those who profit from this corrupt vaccine agenda? Why would the media hide this information, unless they had something to gain? The forces at work here are not concerned with safety, but with total vaccine saturation, regardless of the risk.

The hidden part of that meeting concerned many questioning the actual safety of vaccines, or admissions that safety concerns were not only evident, but also widespread. Opening this link at Brighton will allow access to that live video footage.

The long-term use of vaccines, use that has increased to previously unheard of levels, especially in infants and young children, has turned the world population into a vaccine dependent state, which means that more and more vaccines will have to be forthcoming in order to battle every malady of the human condition. With mass vaccination at these levels, the natural human resistance and immunity to disease will fail. Is this a purposely-planned outcome? Is this being done incrementally so as to once again fool the public into total submission of sought after fabricated remedies that vastly increase the wealth and power of those involved in this scheme, while harming the general population?

There are revelations here that are staggering to say the least. They expose many of the lies presented by the W.H.O., the American Medical Association, the very complicit mainstream media and all its shills, and of course the government at most every level, especially the always complicit federal bureaucracies. Some of those include the (CDC) Center for Disease Control, the (FDA) Federal Drug Administration, the (ACCV), Advisory Commission on Childhood Vaccines, the (ACIP) Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices, the (NIH) National Institutes of Health, and the (VICP) National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program, among many others. The lying is system wide, and should be obvious to any paying attention…

Every time that there is an association, be it temporal or not temporal, the first accusation is it is the adjuvant. And yet, without adjuvants, we are not going to have the next generation of vaccines.  And many of the vaccines that we do have, ranging from tetanus through to HPV require adjuvants in order for them to work.  So the challenge that we have in front of us is:  How do we build confidence in this? And the confidence first of all comes from the regulatory agencies (I look to Marion). When we add an adjuvant it’s because it is essential.  We do not add adjuvants to vaccines because we want to do so.  But when we add them, it adds to the complexity. I give courses every year on “How do you develop vaccines?” “How do you make vaccines?” And the first lesson is, while you’re making your vaccine, if you can avoid using an adjuvant, please do so.  Lesson two is, if you’re going to use an adjuvant, use one that has a history of safety. And lesson three is, if you’re not going to do that, think very carefully.”

He went on to say: “As we add adjuvants, especially some of the more recent adjuvants, such as the ASO1, saponin-derived adjuvants , we do see increased local reactogenicity… The major health concern which we are seeing are accusations of long term, long term effects. (Keep in mind that “reactogencity” means common, and “expected” adverse reactions, especially excessive immunological responses and associated signs and symptoms.)

After this revelation that was filmed and made available, it should be obvious that those championing vaccination are very aware of the high risk associated with these adjuvants, but their main challenge and goal according to Dr. Friede and others at the W.H.O. is not to find a better way, but to “build confidence” by using the government regulatory agencies. This is telling, and brings no assurance that this body is concerned with safety at all, but seems to indicate that mass vaccination at any human cost is desired. This is a normal result when continuing to reap billions and billions of dollars for the pharmaceutical industry is the true goal…

The bottom line is that no thinking and caring parent should allow these toxic vaccinations without very concentrated scrutiny, and if safety satisfaction is not forthcoming, then more questions are necessary. These people need to be held to the fire, as the agenda of mass vaccination is based on profits for the pharmaceutical industry, and an agenda of mass control of the world population by the governing bodies. This is an atrocity, and the health and welfare of all of us, especially innocent infants and children, deserve much more protection than any agenda driven bureaucracies can or will ever offer. The truth is coming out continually about vaccine deceit. Will anyone listen?

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Opting out of the vacciNATION | The Unconventional Parent

 

 

 

 

 

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