Saturday, January 22, 2022

Saturday Snippet: Weimar hyperinflation - its tipping point, and its consequences

 

Last year I published a Saturday Snippet from Adam Fergusson's excellent book "When Money Dies: The Nightmare of Deficit Spending, Devaluation, and Hyperinflation in Weimar Germany".



It's an excellent book, and I highly recommend it to your attention.

Given the very real threat of hyperinflation in the USA, as discussed yesterday in these pages, I thought I'd bring you another excerpt from that book, this time from its conclusion, summarizing some of the lessons learned from that economic and fiscal catastrophe.  It's not inevitable, but it is certainly not impossible, that we may see something similar in our own country in the not too distant future, if our political and economic powers that be don't pull out their joint and several fingers and do something constructive to solve our present multiple economic crises.  I've highlighted a few key sentences and phrases in bold, underlined text.


How great does inflation have to be before a government can no longer control it? Most economists accept that mild inflation has certain therapeutic advantages for a nation which must deal with the social and economic problems to which industrial democracies are usually subject. Most electorates still accept the statements of their politicians’ pious intentions in regard to controlling ever rising prices: and yet the Deutschmark, the currency of the country which had most reason to fear inflation, lost two-thirds of its purchasing power between 1948 and 1975. The pound lost almost half its purchasing power between 1970 and 1975. In neither instance, however, did such depreciation represent a deliberate, cynical policy; which, no doubt, would also have been claimed by the German bankers and governments of the early 1920s, who looked for causes of their monetary difficulties beyond their own printing press and tax system - and found them, without difficulty and to their complete intellectual satisfaction. It remains so that once an inflation is well under way (as Schmölders has it) ‘it develops a powerful lobby that has no interest in rational arguments’. This was as true for Austria and Hungary as for Germany.

There was no moment in Germany between 1914 and the summer of 1923 when in theory currency stability could not have been secured, if necessary by the establishment of a new bank of issue for which sufficient backing was still available. Until the later date, despite the demands made by the Entente and the necessity to find substitutes for the Ruhr’s iron and coal, German gold and foreign currency reserves always constituted a substantial proportion of the exchange value of the circulating paper, no matter how fantastically its volume grew. After the war was over, however, there were always practical difficulties which had little to do with the refusal of Germany’s monetary authorities to see the connection between depreciation and money supply.

Long before the Ruhr invasion, and perhaps even before the preliminary meetings of the Reparations Commission, there came a stage when it was politically impossible to halt inflation. In the middle of 1920, after the brief post-Kapp Putsch period of the mark’s stability, the competitiveness of German exports declined, with unemployment beginning to build up as a result. The point was presumably not lost on the inflators. Recovery of the mark could not be achieved without immediate repercussions in terms of bankruptcies, redundancies, short-time working, unemployment, strikes, hunger, demonstrations, Communist agitation, violence, the collapse of civil order, and thus (so it was believed) insurrection and revolution itself.

Much as it may have been recognised that stability would have to be arranged some day, and that the greater the delay the harder it would be, there never seemed to be a good time to invite trouble of that order. Day by day through 1920, 1921 and 1922 the reckoning was postponed, the more (not the less) readily as the prospective consequences of inflation became more frightening. The conflicting objectives of avoiding unemployment and avoiding insolvency ceased at last to conflict when Germany had both.

The longer the delay, the more savage the cure. Austria by the end of 1922 was in the hands of the receivers, having regained a stable currency only under the absolute direction of a foreigner. Hungary, too, had passed any chance of self-redemption, and later on was to undergo an equal degree of hardship and suffering, especially for her public servants. Stability returned to Germany under a military dictatorship when much of the constitution had been suspended - although the State of Emergency was only indirectly necessitated by the destruction of the nation’s finances. To all three countries stability and then recovery came. All had to be bailed out by others. Each was obliged to accept a greater degree of economic disruption and unemployment than need ever have been feared at the time when the excessive printing of banknotes might still have been stopped. In all three cases, after inflation reached a certain advanced stage, financial and economic disaster seems to have been a prerequisite of recovery.

The take-off point in the inflationary progress, after which the advent of hyperinflation was but a matter of time, the point indeed when it became self-generating and politically irreducible except for short periods, was not indeed to be found on the graph of the currency depreciation, or of the velocity of its circulation, or of the balance of payments deficit. Nor in Germany’s case did it notably coincide with some ultimate crisis of confidence in the mark, at home or abroad - Rathenau’s murder, or the occupation of the Rhine ports, or the London Ultimatum, all of which had immediate seismic effects upon it. Rather it lay on the falling curve of political possibility, with which was closely linked the degree of political power and courage that the government, sorely pressed as it was, was able to muster.

What really broke Germany was the constant taking of the soft political option in respect of money. The take-off point therefore was not a financial but a moral one; and the political excuse was despicable, for no imaginable political circumstances could have been more unsuited to the imposition of a new financial order than those pertaining in November 1923, when inflation was no longer an option. The Rentenmark was itself hardly more than an expedient then, and could scarcely have been introduced successfully had not the mark lost its entire meaning. Stability came only when the abyss had been plumbed, when the credible mark could fall no more, when everything that four years of financial cowardice, wrong-headedness and mismanagement had been fashioned to avoid had in fact taken place, when the inconceivable had ineluctably arrived.

Money is no more than a medium of exchange. Only when it has a value acknowledged by more than one person can it be so used. The more general the acknowledgement, the more useful it is. Once no one acknowledged it, the Germans learnt, their paper money had no value or use - save for papering walls or making darts. The discovery which shattered their society was that the traditional repository of purchasing power had disappeared, and that there was no means left of measuring the worth of anything. For many, life became an obsessional search for Sachverte, things of ‘real’, constant value: Stinnes bought his factories, mines, newspapers. The meanest railway worker bought gewgaws. For most, degree of necessity became the sole criterion of value, the basis of everything from barter to behaviour. Man’s values became animal values. Contrary to any philosophic assumption, it was not a salutary experience.

What is precious is that which sustains life. When life is secure, society acknowledges the value of luxuries, those objects, materials, services or enjoyments, civilised or merely extravagant, without which life can proceed perfectly well but which make it much pleasanter notwithstanding. When life is insecure, or conditions are harsh, values change. Without warmth, without a roof, without adequate clothes, it may be difficult to sustain life for more than a few weeks. Without food, life can be shorter still. At the top of the scale, the most valuable commodities are perhaps water and, most precious of all, air, in whose absence life will last only a matter of minutes. For the destitute in Germany and Austria whose money had no exchange value left existence came very near these metaphysical conceptions. It had been so in the war. In All Quiet on the Western Front, Müller died ‘and bequeathed me his boots - the same that he once inherited from Kemmerick. I wear them, for they fit me quite well. After me Tjaden will get them: I have promised them to him.’

In war, boots; in flight, a place in a boat or a seat on a lorry may be the most vital thing in the world, more desirable than untold millions. In hyperinflation, a kilo of potatoes was worth, to some, more than the family silver; a side of pork more than the grand piano. A prostitute in the family was better than an infant corpse; theft was preferable to starvation; warmth was finer than honour, clothing more essential than democracy, food more needed than freedom.


And what about the political consequences of hyperinflation in Germany?  Earlier in the same chapter, Mr. Fergusson opines:


To say that inflation caused Hitler, or by extension that a similar inflation elsewhere than in a Weimar Germany could produce other Right- or Left-wing dictatorships, is to wander into quagmires of irrelevant historical analogy. The comparable, coincidental, financial and social circumstances of Austria and Hungary do not, in any case, support such a notion, telling in other matters as are some of the parallels which may be found. On the other hand, the vast unemployment of the early 1930s gave Hitler the votes he needed. Just as the scale of that unemployment was part of the economic progression originating in the excesses of the inflationary years, so the considerable successes of the Nazi party immediately after stabilisation and immediately before the recession were linked ... with its advances in 1922 and 1923.

It is indisputable that in those inflationary years Hitler felt his political strength as a national figure and first tried his fingers for size on the throat of German democracy. Indeed, as Mr Clive perceptively reported, ‘In the course of 1923 he succeeded in rousing more passions and stirring up more bad blood than far greater men than he have done in a lifetime.’ The Consul-General might with justification have added that Hitler should go far. Germany only needed a new dose of economic misfortune for the Nazis to seize power, quasi-constitutionally, the second time round.

Inflation did not conjure up Hitler, any more than he, as it happened, conjured it. But it made Hitler possible.


As we face the reality of widespread unemployment, the prospect of high inflation,  and possibly hyperinflation in this country, it would be well to remember that such economic conditions can pave the way for tyranny and the destruction of democracy.  They have in the past - and not just in Germany, either.  There's no reason why they cannot do so again.

Grim thoughts for a Saturday morning . . . but thoughts we should be thinking now, and potential dangers we should be preparing to face in our own future.  God grant it won't come to that!

Peter


Friday, January 21, 2022

Researching the Wild West - some examples on film

 

Following the publication of my latest Western novel, "Wood, Iron, and Blood", I've had a few questions from readers about how I'm able to find so much historical material in my research.  The simple answer is, there's a lot of it out there.  If you find a few sources and follow them, they lead you to others, until before you know it you've got far more information than you can actually use.

I thought I'd illustrate the depth of material available through three video clips.  All are interesting and informative, and I recommend you take the time to watch them at your leisure.  Remember, nothing you see or hear below is faked or "Hollywood-ized":  it's as it really was, way back then.








They built them tough in those days!

Peter


I think President Putin has described the current condition of the USA very precisely

 

Here's a very brief video (less than a minute) in which President Putin of Russia describes how he sees the USA's position right now.  I highly recommend that you watch it.  He's speaking in Russian, but subtitles (in English) should come on automatically, because I've coded for them.  If they don't, please click over to the video on YouTube and activate them there.




I think he's hit the nail squarely on the head.  What say you, readers?

As I said yesterday, I challenge anyone to identify the compelling national security interest of the USA in Ukraine.  All anyone's been able to come up with so far is "muh DEMOCRACY!" and the like.  Ukraine must sort out its own politics - and democracy there is no more than a chimera, a pipe-dream, and has been for centuries, not decades or years.  The same applies to Russia.  They're not only foreign nations, they're foreign cultures, thinking, feeling and behaving very, very differently from ourselves.  That's no problem, of course - they're entitled to that - but it means we interfere at our peril, because we can't visualize the situation through their eyes, and sense their visceral reactions (which are nothing like those they display for public consumption).

President Putin is a pragmatist and a realist.  President Biden and his administration are not.  They're trying to use Ukraine to re-focus public attention away from their many, many shortcomings and failings.  They won't succeed.

(To read an absolutely devastating fisking of the Biden administration's and Democratic Party's shortcomings after one year in power, go read Larry Correia's latest.)

Peter


"Since January 2020, the United States has printed nearly 80% of all US dollars in existence." Be afraid. Be very afraid.

 

If this report doesn't scare the hell out of you, you sure as heck don't understand the economic disaster now staring us in the face.


Since March of 2020, Americans and the world alike have watched from the sidelines as power hungry politicians have ushered in draconian lockdowns, shutdowns, police state measures, and brought the economy to its knees. While governments around the planet used their central banks to devalue their currencies by printing money to fund their tyranny, the US led the way down this road to fiscal horror.

Thanks to the trillions of dollars the Federal Reserve has printed over the last two years, America is currently in an inflation crisis. One need only look at the price of groceries over the last two years to realize just how bad of a crisis we are currently experiencing.

. . .

As government spending has skyrocketed over the last two years, they have financed their massive expenditures by stealing value from your savings by printing more money through the central bank.

When you print more money it means there are more dollars chasing the same amount of goods and services, which causes prices to rise. In just the past three fiscal years, federal spending has swollen to nearly $7 trillion a year, up from about $4.4 trillion in fiscal year 2019. Spending was $6.6 trillion in 2020, and $6.8 trillion in 2021.

If we want to put this into perspective, we can take a look at the monetary supply at the beginning of 2020, which showed just $4.0192 trillion in circulation. By January 2021, that number had jumped up to $6.7 trillion — but this was only the beginning.

By November of last year, that number climbed to $20.354 trillion dollars in circulation — meaning that since January 2020, the United States has printed nearly 80% of all US dollars in existence

As the Hill points out, “the Biden administration and Democrat-controlled Congress are causing America to slowly but certainly commit economic suicide. The only hope the United States has to reverse course is a widespread, firm backlash against the irresponsible policies that created the present crisis in the first place. A good place to start would be a total rejection of the Build Back Better bill now under consideration in Congress.”

Unfortunately, that did not happen and the US is setting itself up for a situation similar to that of Germany’s Weimar Republic.


There's more at the link.

Forget the "official" figure of inflation at about 7%.  That's been bureaucratically mangled, folded, spindled and mutilated until it's meaningless.  It no longer measures reality for consumers "on the ground".  Applying the criteria I discussed last year, plus the corrective factor of 3.5 that I proposed, I firmly believe that our actual consumer inflation rate is more like 25% right now, and getting worse by the day.

The money supply figures explain why.  Crippling inflation, perhaps hyperinflation, is now unavoidable.  All that money is flooding the market, looking for something to buy - and in the process, driving up prices in all directions.  (If you don't understand how money supply drives inflation, see here for an excellent primer.)

Most of us don't have sufficient discretionary income to accommodate such price increases.  It's time to make a radical, wide-ranging analysis of our income and expenditure, and cut back on the latter wherever possible, concentrating on essentials and leaving out luxuries.  This is going to take years to sort out, and we should adjust our perspective accordingly.

Peter


Thursday, January 20, 2022

State of the author, and my latest book

 

Thank you very much to everyone who's so far bought/read "Wood, Iron, and Blood", my latest Western novel and the first in the new series "The Annals of Ash".



It's been published for two weeks now, and is proving popular - so much so that it's been the #1 New Release in the Amazon category "Classic Action & Adventure" for more than a week.  (Click the image for a larger view.)



The print edition is now available, as is a revised version of the e-book, in which I've corrected half-a-dozen typos to which readers drew my attention.  I'm annoyed about them being there.  I try very hard to put out a book that's as "clean" and correct as I can make it, and I slipped up in a few places on this one.  I'll try to do better for subsequent ones.  (Speaking of that, I'm having trouble at present holding down my muse, who's trying to get me to start the second book in the Ash series.  I have several others needing to be completed in the short term, so I'm trying to batten down the hatches on my Western muse while listening harder to the science fiction one!)

If you've already bought the e-book edition and want to get the revised edition, simply re-download it from Amazon.  You can do that through your "Content & Devices" menu, found under the "Account & Lists" heading.  To make sure you get the revisions, I suggest waiting a week or so before doing that, to give Amazon time to update their download system.

Yesterday was a bitter-sweet moment.  I was more than half-way through the sixth volume of the military-science-fiction Maxwell Saga, to be titled "Venom Strike";  but it wasn't working as I wanted it to.  It was getting overly convoluted, meandering away from the central plot and incorporating too many side issues.  I therefore took a command decision and axed over 20,000 words from the manuscript.  The remaining 30,000 are tightly focused around a particular individual and sub-plot, and will remain key to the book;  but I'll write a new opening chapter or two, then continue with a fresh approach.  I know there are plenty of fans waiting for the next Maxwell novel, and I don't want to disappoint them with second-rate work.  It'll mean a delay in publication, possibly pushing it out into March instead of February, but I'm sure you'd rather have a good book than a mediocre one.  I'll do my best for you.

(By the way, new editions of the Maxwell Saga will shortly be issued, with updates to improve them - no changes to the storylines, just improving the punctuation, replacing words that were too often repeated with synonyms, that sort of thing.  Because it was my first series, I've learned a lot since the first books were written, and I'd like to make them better.  I'll include update instructions when I publish the new editions.)

People often ask me whether I make more money from book purchases, or "borrows" through Kindle Unlimited, Amazon's subscription library.  I make about twice as much on the sale of an e-book compared to a loan:  effectively, given partial reads, it takes 3-4 KU borrows to produce the same income as a single e-book sale.  If I could sell that many instead of lending them, I'd be a lot better off!

However, I understand that for many people, particularly in today's difficult economic circumstances, book purchases are a luxury they simply can't afford.  For them, a $10 monthly subscription to KU, giving them unlimited access to books in that program, is much more economical and affordable;  so I continue to make my books available through it.  I'd much rather have more readers, spreading the word about how much they like my books, than only a few readers who can afford them.  Other authors have taken the decision to withdraw their books from KU, and/or to "go wide", publishing their books on other outlets besides Amazon.  That's their choice, and I wish them well.  Only time will tell who made the best decision(s) in economic terms.

I did a quick analysis this morning.  Based on recent sales, my income stream across all my books breaks down to 35.5% from e-book purchases, 2.5% from print purchases, and 62% from KU borrows.  That varies by book, too:  on some volumes, I get as much as 75% of my income from KU borrows, with relatively few sales.  I hope that answers the questions of those who want to know how my writing income breaks down.  It's not yet at a level where I can afford to live on it, but combined with my wife's income from her job, we cope.  As I get more books out there, I hope to improve our finances even more.

I'm never going to be able to afford to retire (my pension went south along with my pastoral career when I took a stand over the clergy child sex abuse scandal), but with my readers' help, I'll hopefully be able to earn enough to compensate for that.

Peter


The ecclesial solution to squirrel infestations

 

Received from A. M. on MeWe:


The Presbyterian church called a meeting to decide what to do about their squirrel infestation. After much prayer and consideration, they concluded that the squirrels were predestined to be there, and they should not interfere with God’s divine will.

At the Baptist church, the squirrels had taken an interest in the baptistry. The deacons met and decided to put a water-slide on the baptistry and let the squirrels drown themselves. The squirrels liked the slide and, unfortunately, knew instinctively how to swim, so twice as many squirrels showed up the following week.

The Lutheran church decided that they were not in a position to harm any of God’s creatures. So, they humanely trapped their squirrels and set them free near the Baptist church. Two weeks later, the squirrels were back when the Baptists took down the water-slide.

The Episcopalians tried a much more unique path by setting out pans of whiskey around their church in an effort to kill the squirrels with alcohol poisoning. They sadly learned how much damage a band of drunk squirrels can do.

But the Catholic church came up with a more creative strategy! They baptized all the squirrels and made them members of the church. Now they only see them at Christmas and Easter.

Not much was heard from the Jewish synagogue. They took the first squirrel and circumcised him. They haven’t seen a squirrel since.


The Catholic solution seems in order.  We used to refer to the "hatch, match and dispatch" crowd - those who were seen in church only for baptisms, weddings and funerals.



Peter


Someone please tell me: what compelling national security interest does the USA have in Ukraine???

 

All the current talk about threats of war with Russia over Ukraine are about the stupidest thing I can imagine . . . except that the Biden administration has painted itself into a corner with its incompetence and buffoonery, and the oligarchs that are pulling its strings realize that their exploitation of COVID-19 to increase their control over the citizens is in tatters, and Russia sees in our weakness an opportunity to assert its status as a "recovering superpower", if I may use that term.

There is no, repeat, NO reason for Americans to lose their lives to defend a corrupt, incompetent regime in Ukraine.  We have no compelling or vital national security interest to defend there.  Anyone who disagrees with me is free to identify such an interest and explain it in a comment to this blog post.  I'd love to read it.

Tucker Carlson and his guest put it well yesterday.  The segment is only about five minutes long, and is worth watching.




We've seen this tactic used time and time again in multiple countries over many centuries.  Are things getting out of hand for the powers that be in their own country?  Then, quick - let's make the citizens focus on an external threat, something around which they'll feel duty-bound to unite and ignore anything else.  While they're focused on that, we can get away with whatever we like internally.

China's doing that right now over Taiwan.

Russia's doing that right now over Ukraine.

The USA's doing that right now over Russia.

No war is necessary in any of those examples . . . but given the rhetoric of the leaders concerned, and the need they all share to distract their citizens from internal problems and the manufactured (in every way) threat of the COVID-19 pandemic, they'll grasp eagerly at any and every available straw.

Afghanistan wasn't worth the thousands of American lives it cost to conquer and occupy it.  Ukraine isn't worth even one American life, because there's nothing there that we need or want, and nothing that's of direct and immediate importance to us.  Let the Ukrainians and the Russians sort it out.  It's their business.  If Europe wants to get involved, let them.  They're near enough to the problem for it to be their business.  We aren't.

Peter

EDITED TO ADD:  See CDR Salamander's views for an interesting insight into how and why Russia is reacting as it is.


Wednesday, January 19, 2022

"The homeless crisis is a symptom of our society collapsing in real time"

 

That's how Tucker Carlson sees homelessness in America right now.  It's hard to disagree with him.  Here's part of the conclusion from the transcript of his opening segment last night.


It's not complicated at all. It couldn't be simpler. Politicians are making it much easier to be a homeless drug addict in the United States, and much harder to be a law-abiding member of the middle class. What's the effect? Well, let's see. The middle class is dying, and we now have record numbers of drug-addicted vagrants.

What does that tell you? It tells you that incentives work. If you destroy the nuclear family, which they have; if you decriminalize drugs, which they have; if you hand out tents and needles to addicts, what do you think's going to happen? You're going to get more addicts living in tents.

Again, it's not complicated. This is not a vexing public policy question that requires the Brookings Institution to investigate. It's not like fixing Social Security.

And the solution is as simple as the problem. Here's a solution: Stop putting up with it. Say no. No, you can't smoke meth in the park. You're not allowed to crap on the sidewalk. Pull up your pants and get the hell out of here. Go somewhere with lower standards. Head for a place where politicians don't care about their people because we do care. And that's why we're hauling your tent to a landfill and cutting off your checks today. You are a drug addict. Get a job or leave. This is our city. You are not allowed to wreck it. You didn't build it.

Now, that’s not hard. That works. We know it works because that's how societies function for about 2,000 years. If you're an unmarried man with no job, you were not allowed to destroy things. It wasn't your right.

By the way, this is how successful families still operate to this day in the privacy of their own homes when the NGOs aren't watching. Parents reward good behavior, and they do not tolerate bad behavior. Why? Because if you let your kids smoke weed at the breakfast table, they will. So you don't let them. So why not apply the same standard to the drug addicts at Penn Station? Because what we're doing now isn’t compassionate. It's an attack on civilization.


There's more at the link.  I highly recommend reading the whole thing, or watching the segment in the embedded video below.  If it's taken down from YouTube, you'll find another copy at the link above.




Part of me would love to see Tucker Carlson run for elected office, but he probably has more sense than to do that.  He's seen how independent voices are treated by the establishment on both the left and the right of US politics - and his strong views and logical, rational reasoning through our problems outrages both sides.  Can you imagine what he might get up to as a Senator, even a President?  Sadly, that'll probably never happen.  At least his strong voice hasn't been removed from the public arena - yet.  Let's treasure it, and him, while we may.

Peter


Portland police training slide causes controversy

 

I'm sure many readers have heard about the controversy in Portland, OR over police riot training material that allegedly included this slide (clickit to biggit):



Notice that (as far as I'm aware) all the protests and outraged shrieks have come from the left of US politics.  There's a deafening silence on the right - largely because many on the right sympathize with the sentiments expressed in the slide.  I've so far discussed it in passing with several current and former law enforcement friends.  The universal reaction appears to be a giggle of heartfelt agreement.

It's hard not to sympathize with them, because police are deliberately targeted by the left.  They're publicly pilloried because they stand for law and order, things the left would prefer to remove from the political scene so that they can create mayhem unfettered by the long arm of the law.  They denigrate, slander and libel police at will, seek to defund them, threaten them, offer them physical violence - and then act surprised when their attitudes and actions bounce back on them, as expressed in that slide.  Frankly, I'm astonished that more police haven't refused to guard the mayor's home, or official council buildings, when the mayor and council are part of the attack on law enforcement.  As far as I'm concerned, if that's the way they feel, then let them find out at first hand what it's like when law enforcement isn't there to protect them.

That's also why it's worth getting to know your local police force, and ensure that they regard your immediate area as friendly.  If you "show willing" and volunteer to help law enforcement organizations and civic activities, wave a friendly welcome to cops patrolling your streets, and generally make it clear that you aren't a problem they need to worry about, you're very unlikely to fall foul of the attitudes expressed in that slide.  Also, if trouble should come to your town and you need to organize your own neighborhood to resist incursions by the radical left, let the local cops know about it ahead of time, and establish effective liaison with them.  Don't bother with top officials:  deal with the "cop on the beat", those living in, working in and responsible for your area, who'll have to put their lives on the line to defend you if it comes to that.  They'll know that in your area at least, they'll have backup and support.  That's worth gold to them, and more than gold.

Yes, there are problem cops;  yes, there are problem police forces.  We've covered both in these pages from time to time.  However, I still think the majority of cops are trying to "protect and serve", and doing the best they can under very difficult circumstances.  The easier and less stressful we can make those circumstances for them, the more likely we are to receive protection when we need it, and the less likely we are to engender the attitudes expressed in that slide.  I think that's a worthwhile objective.

Peter


The "Corporate State", and why it targets the right - but not the left

 

There's an interesting and thought-provoking article at the Daily Bell.  It's titled "Why the Corporate State Doesn’t Target the American Left".  Here's a short excerpt.


When Biden’s executive branch sets its internal security apparatus sights on “domestic extremists” (intelligence jargon for any group or individual who deviates from the corporate state narrative), The Daily Bell was among the first independent media to sound the alarm.

However, we didn’t rigorously assess why the populist Right, and not the Left, poses an existential threat to the ruling class.

The “establishment” references the conglomeration of dominant interest groups that sits atop the political food chain.

In a past era (in the Western context, before the original Industrial Revolution), the establishment was a landed aristocracy in collusion with the Church and militaries that ruled nation-states.

In the 21st century iteration of feudalism, the ruling class is a consortium of multinational offshore corporate elite.

Theoretically, regardless of who occupies power, any social group outside of the establishment is a latent threat – hence the oppressive apparatuses of state throughout history from the Red Guards of the Mao era to the Stasi of East Germany.

In a rough 99% vs. 1% breakdown, if the vast majority or the “ruled” rose up against the tiny minority of “rulers,” their days perched atop the social hierarchy would be finished.

But, if the 99% can be chopped up into all manner of sub-groups – either along pre-existing cultural, racial, or political fault lines or artificial ones engineered by the state –  and then turned against one another, the status quo can be maintained.

The British perfected this method of rule – often called “divide and conquer” –in their management of colonial assets.

Politically, the population at large (outsiders of the establishment) in the United States is divided into two large groups: “Right” and “Left.”

Here is a brief breakdown of why, in the current social configuration, the Left serves as the enforcement arm of the state to suppress the grassroots Right, which is correctly viewed as the only faction that is a threat to the power structure.


There's more at the link.  It's worth reading the article in full to get the details.

Looking at the behavior of the progressive left wing of US politics and its media lackeys, it's hard not to find the article convincing.  The issues it identifies also demonstrate why the "hyphenated-American" issue, far from being old-fashioned, is still so important.  The corporate state seeks to make more hyphenated-Americans, using race, creed, color, national origin and anything else available to create smaller and smaller special interest groups, because they can be divided (against each other) and ruled in small packets - the progressive left's "identity politics" taken to its absurdist extreme.  United Americans, with no hyphens, will come together around the common cause of what it means to be Americans, which is inimical to the corporate, borderless state and its interests.

Consider, too, the barrage of lock-step criticism of the right of US politics and everyone associated with it, emanating from the mainstream media.  Their allegiance to the corporate state is made clearer when one realizes that a mere six companies control almost all US media.  The infographic at the link is ten years old, but the process of concentration and consolidation of control has continued since it was published, and is today worse than ever.  In the technological sphere, again, a few companies control almost all Internet access and what's available on it (think Google, Facebook, Amazon, etc.).  With so few corporations controlling so much, their control over the corporate state becomes equally clear, because (in so many words) the corporate state cannot function without them.  It's a symbiotic relationship that can't be broken without breaking its component parts at the same time - and they're not about to sit back and allow that to happen without a fight.  Hence, both the corporate state and its corporate masters/tools (call them what you will) attack any aspect of "conventional" politics that might expose and/or resist their hegemony.

I think it's time we recalled one of the most trenchant quotations from President Thomas Jefferson:


I have sworn upon the altar of god eternal hostility against every form of tyranny over the mind of man.


The progressive left and the corporate state exemplify that tyranny.  That reality, in turn, brings another Jefferson quotation to mind:


The end of democracy and the defeat of the American Revolution will occur when government falls into the hands of lending institutions and moneyed incorporations.


Time for a little more of the former quote to combat the latter quote, methinks!

Peter


Tuesday, January 18, 2022

Was last week's synagogue siege an FBI "false flag" operation?

 

Sundance thinks it was.


In the Garland attack the FBI organized, facilitated and coordinated the attack. The FBI even drove the terrorists to the attack venue and then left once the shooting began. Yes, you read that correctly, the first ISIS attack on U.S. soil was organized by the FBI. {Go Deep} CTH dug deep on the 2015 Garland attack, so it wasn’t too difficult to spot the similarities between Garland 2015 and Colleyville 2022.

♦ Colleyville, Texas – Malik Faisal Akram, who was known as Faisal Akram, had a well known Islamic extremist history to British and American intelligence. Akram ranted, prior to his travel to the U.S, that he wished he had died in the 9/11 terror attacks. He was a regular visitor to Pakistan, and reportedly a member of the Tablighi Jamaat group set up to ‘purify’ Islam. To say the U.S. intelligence system knew Faisal Akram would be an understatement.  The FBI knowledge of Akram has now been confirmed by The Daily Mail.

So, the questions become: (1) how did Faisal Akram gain a visa to enter the United States? (2) Who did he visit?  (3) Who gave him the weapon?  (4) Who facilitated his travel and targeting operations; and lastly, (5) who financed and assisted him in his attack?

Unfortunately, the most obvious answer is just like the 2015 Garland example, the FBI was his enabler.


There's much more at the link.  I'll leave you to read Sundance's presentation for yourself.  It's disturbing, to say the least.  I note, too, that the analysis he cites as evidence of FBI involvement in the earlier Garland attack comes from a source that's anything but conservative or right-wing.

What do I think?  Well, considering my previously expressed opinion of the FBI, I won't be in the least surprised if Sundance is right.  The question is, what are we going to do about it?

I'm beginning to think that our next worthwhile Presidential candidate had better have something like "disband the FBI and disbar its agents from any future law enforcement positions" in his electoral platform, if he's to be credible to the vast majority of thinking Americans.



Peter


From Michael Yon, another reminder of why you should be stocking up

 

We've mentioned Michael Yon's calls to stock up on food and other essential supplies on several occasions in these pages.  Now he provides two images that illustrate the extent of the problem in most stores today.  Click either image for a larger view.





He calls it "commie stocking", and warns:


This is how they did it during my years in communists countries. Only it was 100x worse. We moving that direction week by week.

Stock. Up.


Couldn't agree more, as I've said in these pages many, many times.  If you haven't started building up a reserve supply of food yet, it may be too late for serious efforts, because things are getting worse, not better.  Nevertheless, better late than never.  Start now.

If you look around the Internet, you'll find plenty of images of store shelves that are either completely bare, or far less filled than they usually are.  It's nationwide.  It's not "hoarding" or "panic buying" to take heed of that reality, and do your best to insulate yourself and your family against it - it's common sense.

Peter


Memes that made me laugh 92

 

Gathered around the Internet over the past week or so.  Click any image for a larger view.

(A quick note:  Some readers are disappointed when the weekly Memes blog posts contains fewer images than usual [as is the case this week].  The reason is simple.  These posts are titled, "Memes that made me laugh".  Sadly, many memes [particularly political ones] simply aren't funny - they're nasty, designed to score political points, to hurt rather than amuse.  I deliberately avoid most [but not all] political memes here, funny or otherwise, because I respect the fact that my readers hold different opinions, and they have the right to have their opinions treated with respect.  Also, if a meme doesn't make me at least smile, it's also out of consideration.  I pick memes that seem funny to me, and those that are make the week's post.  If there aren't many of them, the post is shorter than usual.)

















































More next week.

Peter