Mueller’s Fall From Grace

After 2 years, the inevitable fall of Mueller came this week, just before his scheduled testimony in front of CONgress regarding his 448 propaganda piece labeled as a “report”.

If you missed it, I wrote a 4 part dissection of the Mueller report, showing it as the fantasy it truly was.

In the past 3 years, numerous independent Progressive journalists and myself have taken Russiagate apart piece by piece until only those with the highest level of cognitive dissonance could believe a single word of Russiagate. If you have ever heard one report on the subject by Aaron Mate or The Duran or Jimmy Dore and still believed Russiagate, you are among the cognitive dissonant people I mentioned.

If you still placed any stock in it, this week should have been the nail in the coffin for you. However, the events of the past week have been ignored by corporate media, so you may have missed it. Here is what happened.

First, unannounced by most media, the Russian firm Internet Research Agency had filed a lawsuit against the US federal government, protesting the claim that the IRA was funded by or had any association with the Russian government. This is something which Mueller made extensive claims of in his report. The IRA won the lawsuit. A US federal judge ruled that there was no evidence that the IRA had any direct connection to the Russian government and that such claims can no longer be promoted by the US government or its representatives. Which includes Mueller. So, if Mueller even infers during his CONgressional testimony that IRA is paid by or tied to the Russian government, he can be held in contempt.

So, when he testifies, what I expect is that he will avoid this by stating something along the lines of, “This is what is contained in my report.” Watch his wording very closely because it will be intentionally completely misleading. He will repeat this wording over over ad nauseum. Expect him to avoid any and every question which deviates from this specific form of statement. Count on it, bet money on it. Hell, bet ME money on it!

Then the DOJ announced that they are reprimanding the FBI for obtaining FISA warrants using the Steele Dossier, even though nothing in the dossier has ever been verified. The Steele Dossier was another major cornerstone of the Mueller report. So, Mueller cannot use the dossier, either.

That means the only things Mueller has left is his indictment of 12 GRU officers. Several problems with that. First, Mueller has offered absolutely no evidence to prove a single claim. Second, an indictment is an accusation. As a former NY attorney general once said, “I can indict a ham sandwich.” That doesn’t mean there is any validity or evidence. Lastly, the GRU has not existed since 2010.

The GRU was changed to the GU in that 2010. You can forgive the clueless media propaganda machine for using the GRU name but an official US government document announcing accusations against an entity which no longer exists under than name for nearly a decade? No, that is NOT excusable. This document was compiled by “Intelligence” officials. If they could not even be accurate about the name of an agency at the center of their accusations, then how accurate can you expect anything else in the report or his statements to be?! If you, yourself are willing to overlook such a glaring detail, then you must admit to yourself that you are willing to overlook anything which doesn’t fit the narrative in what you have turned into a religion. You don’t GAF about the truth, all you want is hatred, anger and blame.

Or maybe you and Mueller just watched “Despicable Me” one too many times. You do know that’s where Gru got his name from, right?

So I am going to be fairly interested in what Mueller has to say in his testimony. Or wondering if something will happen to prevent him from testifying at all. Whether he does or does not, don’t expect anything more, anything different. It will be the same baseless conspiracy theory we have heard for three years with exactly the same amount of “evidence” as on day one. He will refer exclusively to his report as I stated above with no variation or alteration of any kind.

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I am an independent writer with no corporate sponsors or backing. The only income I make from my writing comes from views. At least I have reached the point where it makes more than it costs me! lol! (Not by much.)My writing is done in between full time (and overtime) nursing, shared custody of my brilliant daughter and mundane existence.

I have opened my new website which is intended to be a central listing of protests and political rallies across the US. It’s still a work in progress but is functional. You can find it at http://RallyAndProtest.com

Please consider becoming a patron on Patreon. I try and average at least 20 articles a month, so a $1 a month donation would come down to 5¢ per article to support independent, non-corporate writing. My Patreon page is here.

If you care to share articles with those who do not have Medium or Patreon accounts, I also post most of my articles on my own website, which has no advertising and I pay for with income from writing. My website is at https://issuesunite.com/ and all articles can be shared freely. You can always quote me, no attribution required. My goal is spreading information and awareness. The whole point is building a better, more peaceful, more equitable world for us and future generations.

Break The Echo Chambers!!!

This is a rant on frustration.

I am well aware of the prevalence of click bait in the media, especially on social media. There are click bait farms that churn out nothing but one article after another, all day, every day including Christmas, New Years and any other holiday you can name. Frequently they will post numerous articles on the same day regarding the same subject, all nearly identical. I’m looking at you, Vox!!!

I don’t write click bait. Ever.

The fact is, many times even the title of my articles can drive away readers from one or both parties (cults). My writing has nothing to do with popularity and everything to do with objective reasoning, critical thought. It is not the result of jumping on the latest populist bandwagon. Often my articles on a given subject come out later than the initial screaming wave of emotional responses. Instead, I take the time to fact check, examine, consider and run calculations. None of my writing is ever regurgitation of talking points dictated, authorized, paid for and vomited out by militant zombies on one side or another.

It is not a question. My writing offers rational viewpoints that you are not likely to find from any other source, whether corporate or independent.

Nobody else I have seen has offered a four part series on universal healthcare in layman’s terms, explaining what the effects would be on the economy, job market and society as a whole. Not all of that is obvious. It takes a thorough examination, which I have done because I have been an advocate of universal healthcare for decades.

Nobody else has offered a (currently) 6 part series showing how marketing is used to brainwash the public. It is a tool used by media, the intelligence agencies and political candidates.

Nobody else has run numbers saying how the recent “defense” budget increase could help millions of people if dispersed to humans instead of for bullets and bombs.

I was writing about thereal “defense” budget being over $1 trillion forYEARS before anyone else came along and they did a worse job of illustrating it. I’ve run example numbers in easy to understand formats to display the point.

Nobody else I have seen has gone through the entire 448 page Mueller report, line by line, fact checking all of it and placing his numbers in perspective.

Nobody else has explained how our weapons sales to other countries are done at a loss to the US economy.

Nobody else has detailed exactly why and in what extensive ways Russiagate is dangerous or how Russia would have had nothing to gain by bothering with our elections. I have done this across many articles because it is a very real threat to the entire planet.

This is a short list of examples showing that what I write is far different from other sources. No, I do not have a massive following. Many of my ideas are too detailed, too out of line with the mainstream consciousness. It is not for the zombies, the cultists, the mindless hordes seeking nothing more expansive than what fits in a meme because that is the extent of their mental capacity.

It pisses me off when I spend hours, sometimes days (even weeks) gathering information, fact checking, sometimes running calculations, having spent years studying subjects formally and informally, only to have some deadhead idiot with no comprehensive capacity think that they can contradict something I have written based solely on the article title or a small excerpt while they offer one sentence or less. Yes, that was all one sentence and I actually cut it short.

Read the article before commenting!!!

Sharing every “Hate trump” article, meme or quote you come across by any source, including GWB, does not make you Progressive, “woke” or even remotely conscious. Nor does sharing every pro-Bernie, Warren or whomever article, meme or quote. It makes you a puppet dancing on a string.

To be really Progressive and awake takes a lot more. It takes time, effort, close examination on people and issues. I know most people do not have the time or energy to spend on these things. To know the truth on these things means listening to sane, rational, intelligent voices that have nothing to gain, nothing to lose because they are NOT backed by corporate interests or a profit motive. That fully describes everything I write. I spend time and effort on all of this to condense and interpret it, then use simple language that most people can understand. I break complex issues down over multiple articles that are still in a readable format which will not take days of your life to read.

Yes, what I write can frequently cause a severe disruption in any cognitive dissonance you may have present. That’s generally the point.

If all you want is more of the same thing you hear Fox, CNN, MSNBC or any other corporate mouthpiece spews 24/7/365, from talking heads paid millions of dollars per year to market the views they want you to have or by weapons contractors and CIA propagandists, you have no need for independent content producers. Just stick to what you believe in and never make the attempt to change it, never challenge the authorized narrative. However, then you have to stop claiming you want anything to change for the better. Admit that you just want more of the same. The same names, same voices, same parties, same policies, same tactics, same arguments. You either cannot emotionally handle something different or you fear anything different.

If that’s what you want, stop commenting. We’ve heard what you have to say. Millions of you because you’re cloned, stereotyped, programmed, conditioned, rubber stamped. Stick to corporate media with the rest of the clones. Stick to the same two parties with the rest of the cult. Stick to the pages and groups that never speak a word you disagree with. Keep going through the same processes, same arguments, same statements over and over. If real Progressives want to hear that, we’ll tune in to the sources we turned off long ago for these exact reasons. We don’t need you trying to force it on us.

The Programming of America, Pt 6- Cult of Personality

As I have detailed throughout this series, the media and the government discourage critical thinking and try to incite emotional reflexes, suppressing critical thinking. This is true from advertising to news to music to movies and TV to political campaigns.

Where political campaigns are concerned, ideas and issues are discouraged. Instead, you are expected to focus on a name. There is a story, a legend, an emotional response created to accompany the name, the face which is packaged and sold to you like toothpaste. “Want whiter teeth and fresher breath? Vote for Joe/Jane Doe!!” It really is no different.

You are sold the idea of fear. Then a candidate promises to keep you “safe”. The threat does not have to be real, only your perception of a threat has to be real. If they keep repeating it, they condition an emotional response in the average person. If the narrative is questioned, no need to respond using facts, just accuse your questioner of “treason”, being “anti-American”, an agent of a foreign government (the outsider/invader), a “coward”, “weak”. Call them “inexperienced” and “naive”. Use blame and state or merely insinuate that they or some cohort they belong to are the reason for every problem the country has. In all cases, use emotion to condition a negative response to any opponent or questioner of the narrative.

The next time you watch a political debate, watch these dynamics in action. When you’re aware of it, the entire picture changes in your perception.

One of the most popular emotional tactics used in politics is the portrayal of a candidate as an underdog, disadvantaged and winning against the odds. Or they portray themselves as an insider who knows all the tricks, all the people to “get things done” and hence their success. The goal being to gain feelings of camaraderie or as someone to be respected and looked up to. That’s not even saying this is a negative, just something to be aware of. Business people and lawyers try and portray themselves as being knowledgeable. Military veterans try and portray themselves as aggressive. Lesser known, female and minority candidates portray themselves as having fought their way up, even when they did not. All of them try and portray themselves as having esoteric knowledge of information which you are not privy to. Of course, they can never convey that knowledge openly because “national security”.

The most interesting part of this is that nothing at all makes this country less secure than does “national security”.

Basically, political candidates try to be more like pop stars than political candidates. You can blame most of this on campaign managers and the media, though many candidates are better at putting on a public show than they are at governing. If they have policies and platforms, they try and hide their true agendas until after the election because most of those agendas are nothing you, the voter, would approve of. In other cases, the only thing they have is their public persona which is devoid of substance. Much like the majority of pop stars. The unfortunate thing is that many Americans would vote for a vapid pop star over a rational and intelligent candidate with genuine policies because too many Americans don’t want to extend the effort to think hard enough to understand what the candidate has to say.

The only way that this country or the world is going to improve the conditions we currently have will be to put empty emotions aside, think objectively, listen critically and ask questions we may wish to avoid because the answers reveal truths that are uncomfortable. We need to seek out less of names and more substance. Less cheer leading and more policy. More truth and less “feel good” messaging. Which means WE have to step up and be brave. These people are our elected representatives, not our “leaders”, not our parents, not our friends. They are applying for a job. Once hired, we need to hold them accountable for doing that job effectively. Stop allowing for human mistakes. They have staffs, advisers and entire government agencies in addition to their constituents to rely on for assistance and information. They have few if any excuses other than intentional misdeeds. Holding their feet to the fire and demanding better is the only way we will ever get better from them.

This is not a pop concert. Stop acting like it is.

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I am an independent writer with no corporate sponsors or backing. The only income I make from my writing comes from views. At least I have reached the point where it makes more than it costs me! lol! (Not by much.)My writing is done in between full time (and overtime) nursing, shared custody of my brilliant daughter and mundane existence.

I have opened my new website which is intended to be a central listing of protests and political rallies across the US. It’s still a work in progress but is functional. You can find it at http://RallyAndProtest.com

Please consider becoming a patron on Patreon. I try and average at least 20 articles a month, so a $1 a month donation would come down to 5¢ per article to support independent, non-corporate writing. My Patreon page is here.

If you care to share articles with those who do not have Medium or Patreon accounts, I also post most of my articles on my own website, which has no advertising and I pay for with income from writing. My website is at https://issuesunite.com/ and all articles can be shared freely. You can always quote me, no attribution required. My goal is spreading information and awareness. The whole point is building a better, more peaceful, more equitable world for us and future generations.

The Programming of America, Pt 5, Sex and Violence Sell

A major recurrent theme in the programming of people is the constant onslaught of sex and violence in media. From prime time television to YouTube videos to cable to movies to anything you can name. Print, video, static images, song lyrics, books all sell themselves too often based on the most primal human instincts.

The reason for this is simple. Sex and violence incite responses which are indeed primal. People focusing on what are nothing more than hormonal impulses have the tendency to cease thinking critically. This is historically especially true of men but is just as true of women today.

However, this concept can be expanded to include anything emotional. From tear-jerking stories meant to provoke empathy to cutesy advertising featuring puppies, kittens, pandas or sloths.

Once your emotions are engaged, most people never get past the immediate emotional response. If you are able to overcome that emotional reaction, chances are you will be labeled. Cold, mean, frigid, cowardly, weak. Thus, even those able to overcome the emotional influence may not vocalize the fact openly for fear of being ostracized in some way, leaving them rejected, isolated, their humanity or simply attractiveness degraded, judged, considered “less than”.

We live in a society where men who are violent are considered “manly”. Gun or sword fights are “exciting”. Those who use their mental faculties may be seen as incapable of violence, fearful, less able to provide.

People who remove their clothing at the drop of a hat are considered desirable. Those who show more modesty no longer have a mystery to them. They are seen as avoiding intimacy or passion.

In each of these cases, the consequences of actions in real life to violence or sexual promiscuity can be damaging or even deadly. They can ruin lives personally, socially, professionally.

It often seems like our society has gone backward on the evolutionary scale, being driven by basal instincts led around by our primitive brains. Some would call it our “lizard brains”.

Basically all of this comes from the marketing industry. As mentioned earlier in this series, the marketing industry focuses on gaining emotional reactions. Using social anxiety to sell deodorant and toothpaste. Fear of illness to sell medications and insurance. Hunger and craving to sell food. Violence to sell movies and TV shows. Sex to sell beer, perfume, clothing and anything else you can name.

The less you rely on hormonal impulses and the more you rely on your intellect, the more informed you can be and the less you can be manipulated. There is literally no advantage to relying on hormonal reactions over rational thinking. Believing that hormones and primitive behavior is more important than rational thought places you squarely in the realm of anachronistic middle school jock, bully and “mean girl” mentality. You know, the people we all despised when we were younger because they were vapid and had nothing useful to offer.

For the record, using your brain does not make you less capable of defense or weak. Those who cannot think for themselves become servants to those who can. Besides, intelligence is truly sexy. Nothing is hotter than a smart woman. Like my gf.

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I am an independent writer with no corporate sponsors or backing. The only income I make from my writing comes from views. At least I have reached the point where it makes more than it costs me! lol! (Not by much.)My writing is done in between full time (and overtime) nursing, shared custody of my brilliant daughter and mundane existence.

I have opened my new website which is intended to be a central listing of protests and political rallies across the US. It’s still a work in progress but is functional. You can find it at http://RallyAndProtest.com

Please consider becoming a patron on Patreon. I try and average at least 20 articles a month, so a $1 a month donation would come down to 5¢ per article to support independent, non-corporate writing. My Patreon page is here.

If you care to share articles with those who do not have Medium or Patreon accounts, I also post most of my articles on my own website, which has no advertising and I pay for with income from writing. My website is at https://issuesunite.com/ and all articles can be shared freely. You can always quote me, no attribution required. My goal is spreading information and awareness. The whole point is building a better, more peaceful, more equitable world for us and future generations.

Russiagate Is More Dangerous Than Trump

For all the people still pushing, still believing the Russiagate hoax, even if you think there is anything to it, listen for once.

Yes, Trump sucks. Yes, he is dangerous (mostly for the power given him and renewed by both parties). He is unstable, crude and idiotic. He is helping to destroy the economy but did not do it on his own. You do remember why we were fighting for change in 2016, right? And 2012? And 2008? Remember the Obama promise of hope and change which never materialized?

Yet when it comes to international risk of warfare, Trump faces no “resistance”. No matter how lame or crooked his attempts at peace have been, they have been stronger attempts at peace than any administration in decades. It has been his peace efforts which have gotten actual resistance, pushing for conflict with Russia, maintaining tensions or worsening tensions with North Korea. When he bombed Syria, corporate media called him “presidential” and not a single opposing word was heard from Democrats. When he increased troops on the Russian border and sea lanes, complete silence. When he increased military presence in the South China Sea, he had complete support from both parties. When he imposed sanctions and talked about invading Venezuela, he again had complete support with no opposition.

The thing you absolutely must understand is that no matter what he has done or not done, Russiagate is still more dangerous than all of his actions/inactions or twitter tirades combined.

When you push the Russiagate propaganda, you are pushing ideas mostly created and endorsed by weapons manufacturers. In other words, warmongers. You are enabling this. Russiagate is the primary rationale for the never-ending increases in “defense” spending. You are doing this. Stop blaming anyone else.

Russiagate has led to increases in “defense” spending of more than $30 billion in the last two years, with another increase planned for next year. That’s just the increase. It is also what Obama used as a rationale for authorizing upgrading nuclear weapons at an estimate in 2016 of $1 trillion over 10 years. That’s $100 billion per year and it’s NOT included in the “defense” budget. In addition, in the 2 years since he signed that authorization, the cost estimate has already increased by $300 billion.

However, that’s not enough. Once that spending is increased, if the DoD does not use it for the intended purpose, they find other ways to justify having that large of a budget. That’s why we see increased military tensions with China, Iran, Venezuela and more. If they cannot justify invading and bombing Russia, they will divert your attention to other countries and keep right on spending your money, keep driving up the debt.

All that military spending is ripped from social programs while helping the non-stop drive toward the economic failure of this country. We keep printing money which dilutes the value of the dollar. We keep taking money from social programs which actually help the economy. Money is diverted year after year away from infrastructure repair and improvement.

I have made the statement many times and repeat it again. You endorse the idea of Medicare For All. Universal healthcare will not mean squat if your are a pile of radioactive ash.

However, let’s expand on this idea. If we suffer a nuclear war, how much good will increased wages be? Election reform? Higher taxes on the rich? Will any of that matter if our cities are in ruins, millions dead or dying and the rest have radiation poisoning? What are your environmental concerns worth at that point?

I know. You think I am exaggerating. I respond with saying you are complacent and naive.

Economics is not the only way in which Russiagate is dangerous and damaging. It has led to censorship of social media. I’ve shared many articles which have been removed from FB. Social media has censored nearly all anti-war voices. Nearly all voices bringing attention to police abuse. They label it as “Russian propaganda” and simply erase it and sometimes block the account. MSM pundits have actually used responses in interviews, accusing people who oppose the narrative of being Russian agents/trolls, etc.

Is this what you want? Do you want to go back to 1956 McCarthyism? Because that’s what you are promoting.

If you want changes, then focus on the policies which promote those changes. That is the only “resistance” which matters or will have any effect. Even if Russiagate were proven completely true today, would that change a single policy? Would it end a single conflict? Would it reduce military spending? Would it expand access to healthcare? The answer is NO.

So, now it is time for you to think about what you are doing. What changes do you want to see in this country? What are you personally doing to enact those changes? Are you doing more good or more harm by keeping this absolute BULLSHIT narrative going?

If you are not part of the solution, then YOU are the problem.

The Programming of America: Pt II, Selling War

This is part II of my series on how Americans are programmed to think in certain ways without thinking, without questioning. If you missed part I regarding marketing in various forms (not always called marketing and advertising, sometimes called many other things), you can find part I here.

In part II of this series, I focus on war (military adventurism) and how it is sold like everything else in this country, though in a more complex form. We are sold warfare as a positive from early childhood until death. This is something I have written about previously, though often split between different subjects and articles.

Corporate (Military Industrial Complex) influence does not begin with the news media, as far as our life exposure is concerned. It begins in grade school. Think back to history classes and how past US wars were presented to you. Heroism throughout. Never the slightest question that each and every conflict we have been engaged in was justified and ethical. Never a hint that our soldiers and officials issuing orders have committed war crimes, which they absolutely have when you omit “patriotism” as a rationale. Protests against Vietnam barely gain mention and the protests which happened against WWII, Korea and Iraq are never mentioned in grade school. For all I know, they’re not even mentioned in college. Nor is it mentioned that the Nazi and Communist parties had wide support in the US prior to WWII. The Communist and Socialist parties had wide support in the US right up until McCarthyism.

For this, we have to look at the tangled ties between textbook publishers, politicians and the deep pockets of weapons manufacturers who donate to the politicians. Then the politicians set the standards by which textbooks are chosen. This is stage one of selling war to the American public, beginning with childhood.

Then the next stage comes as teenagers. Partly through movies and TV which glorify warfare without showing images of the reality involved. Military recruiters at schools and patriotic displays at sports events. Commercials showing someone in a uniform, then transitioning to that person in civilian life, uninjured, no PTSD from horrors they have witnessed or directly taken part in. They are all smiling, clean, drug-free, no therapy.

Who pays for all those displays and commercials? You do. Who pays for those textbooks? You do. Who acts as consultants to Whollyweird for the movies and TV shows? The military. Who pays for them to act in that role? You do. If a movie tries to show the military in an unflattering light, the military will bring pressure against the studio. That pressure can include coercion by coordinating with local authorities for licensing purposes. The military has “consulted” on tens of thousands of movies and shows over decades. Who pays for their “consultations”? You do. Who pays to prosecute and incarcerate peaceful antiwar protesters? You do.

Only after considering all the above do we reach the point where we can consider corporate “news” media and their paid portrayal of our military endeavors. Try and name a US military conflict which the media has ever opposed. I’ll wait. I’m 57 years old and have never seen the media object to a US military action. Look at the reactions we have seen when it was even suggested decreasing military presence in Middle Eastern countries or any peace efforts with Russia and North Korea.

No, you will never see anything more of the devastation wrought by US warfare beyond a few ruined buildings, blamed on “terrorists”. You will not see children splattered on walls and streets by our bombs. You will not see victims with limbs torn off and open head injuries showing exposed brain tissue. You’re more likely to see video of our missiles and aircraft launching, preferably in low light so it highlights the afterburner effect to make it visually appealing or exciting. You will hear rave reviews about drone warfare which makes warfare bloodless and without physical risk for our soldiers. You will not hear that drone pilots get PTSD too. You will not hear that children in the countries being bombed by drone warfare are terrified of blue skies because that’s when the drones are most likely to strike.

Cue the advertisements for Boeing, Raytheon and Northrup-Grumman. Paid sponsors of your favorite corporate news outlet. Who pays for the ads you see from them? You do. That is your tax dollars at work. Who pays for the drones? You do.

Up next, interviews with high ranking military officials and veterans speaking of how we need more bombs, more guns, more drones, more troops to kill more terrorists (children, mothers, grandparents living in their own countries, sitting in their own living rooms). It’s their own fault for living there. Their existence on top of “our” oil fields makes them enemies. Saying we need to invade another country and another. Never once do you hear a diplomat saying we need peaceful negotiations to end a conflict.

When the media and politicians talk about manufacturing weapons, they consistently do so couched in terms of “creating jobs”. What they fail to mention is that building bridges also creates jobs while not intentionally killing people. Universal healthcare would creates tens of thousands, hundreds of thousands, possibly millions of jobs while improving and extending lives. Yet that we cannot afford. They fail to mention that to keep producing weapons means we must keep waging wars for as long as possible. When one war ends (if ever), another one must be started and another and another. We keep paying for each and every one of those conflicts with money ripped from our social support programs and educational system. We pay with creating more enemies and with trade losses. They fail to mention that producing weapons is only part of the cost. Then we have to pay for shipping those weapons, providing security for those weapons, targeting systems with training and salaries to operate them, and launching those weapons with training and salaries.. They fail to mention that weapons manufacturing frequently does extensive environmental damage long before the damage from using those weapons. Domestic environmental damage which we pay for in dollars, ill health and deaths. Yay, jobs..

Cue ads for oil companies who profit from our seizure of resources in the countries where we murder innocent civilians.

Next up, a report on how we cannot afford universal healthcare but we need to give more money to the VA for their limited socialized medical system which spends tens of billions per year on drugs and medical equipment. Wecan consider those VA costs to be subsidies for the oil companies, military contractors and drug companies who bribe politicians and advertise on corporate media to sell you on the next war. Who pays for the VA, even if you receive no care from them? You do. Who pays for the advertising? You do.

Cue ads from drug companies and medical insurance corporations. Maybe with big flags in the background telling you to support the troops. Yay, ‘Murca.

Up next, a report on the homeless epidemic. Many of whom are veterans. An epidemic, stated as though it’s a disease. As though the homeless are a disease, rather than victims of a diseased system which rapes them violently, bleeds them dry and leaves them to die by the roadside like bags of garbage thrown away by our government.

We have the VFW, the VA, insurance companies that specialize in veterans, magazines targeting veterans, Memorial Day, Labor Day… Have you ever noticed we do not have a single day or nationally recognized organization dedicated to the propagation of peace?

From childhood to death Americans are sold sterilized images of warfare. Shoved into developing minds in between basic math and English, as though mass slaughter is a mere fact of life. As long as it happens in other countries, not our own. Deaths at the hands of our war machine are sold as entertainment. The next war is sold as “humanitarian intervention” yet we are never shown the results when the bombs have stopped. Disease, famine, poisoned water, decimated economies, destroyed lives. Effects which take generations to “recover” from, as if recovery is possible. No reviews of success or failure, just advertising for the next war, the next “threat” which is never actually a threat, the next country we must save from themselves, the next investment opportunity.

Never question the advertising, the programming of your children or of yourself. Cheer for the veterans, pray for the widows, widowers and children of veterans but never ask why the war was fought. If you ask questions or object, you will be branded a traitor, un-American, unpatriotic, a pariah. Maybe a Russian troll.

Asking questions means you are brainwashed, not questioning means you think for yourself. Just believe, have faith, wave your flag and hold your hand over your.. eyes and ears. Keep telling yourself, “We’re the Good Guys©” until you convince yourself. Then keep watching the marketing machine, keep cheering as you act as free advertising for the death machine.

The Programming of America: Pt I, Marketing

This is my first installment of a series regarding how marketing pervades our lives in ways most do not realize and what the negative effects are. Be sure to subscribe to know when a new installment drops.

I continuously see Americans claiming to think for themselves while their words, opinions, attitudes and behaviors tell a far different story. This is no surprise. We live in a society that is ruled far more by marketing (advertising) than most Americans ever grasp. That’s because they fail to understand the very nature of marketing at it’s very core.

If you study marketing, what you find is that the core structure of marketing lies in a distorted study of psychology with the express intent of manipulation. In other words, it’s brainwashing on a massive scale.

If you look at a syllabus or course description of college marketing programs, you find references such as “customer engagement”, “consumer behavior and analysis”, “expanding value” (in other words, exaggerating claims) and so forth. You may have already heard such things as “creating a market”, “identifying a need”. What these things come down to means convincing people they need something they did not need last week.

Yet even that does not go far enough to explain how people are manipulated. One must understand that corporate news and political campaigns are forms of marketing. I’ve said before and say again, follow the money. Look at who is paying for advertising on a network. Look at who is donating money to campaigns.

Marketing is most frequently based on emotion. The emotion used most frequently is fear. Fear of social isolation. Is your breath fresh enough? Is your shirt white enough? Is your cologne as good as the next guy? Does your bra lift enough? (Look at old bra commercials, claiming to lift and separate and compare to push-up bras today.) Fear of pain. New insoles? How much pain medication can your liver withstand? Fear of illness. Fear of depression. In other words, using emotions to make you fear your own emotions.

Political campaigns use many of the same tactics and people with the same training in marketing techniques. That’s a large part of what campaign managers do. Identify “needs” of voters. Identify or manipulate fears to exploit.

The most interesting part of this is that it takes very little effort to convince people to be afraid and immense effort to convince them their fears are unfounded. The vast majority of people are programmed to react emotionally, rather than think critically.

Know who else makes extensive use of the exact same psychological techniques? The “intelligence” agencies. The CIA, NSA and FBI are well known to use propaganda in other countries and to have used propaganda in the US itself. For some reason, Americans think that any such manipulations inside this country are things of the past. Citizens also think they are not prone to being controlled by these techniques, even as they tune in to corporate media and watch people like James Clapper being used as a source of information on major networks. Even as “intelligence” agency veterans run for public office.

There are no Jedi mind tricks at play here. People are actually easy to understand, easy to manipulate. Most people want some authority figure telling them what to do, what to think. More “likes” means something is valid. Bigger is better. More viewers means higher quality. Join the crowd, march in line, buy the most popular items, watch the latest blockbuster on opening weekend, vote for the popular candidate but keep telling yourself how you’re different from all the rest.

Even here on what is supposedly independent media I see articles from major media sources with the highest views, likes and comments. Nothing about those articles are any different from what is published on the core websites of those corporate sources. So, why are readers even bothering to be on independent media sites if all they are going to do is follow corporate media?

Does it make any sense? Or have they just programmed themselves by their own choice?

Facebook Blocks “In The Now”

Facebook has blocked In The Now, a popular Progressive YouTube channel which many people in my own feed had shared videos from.

As of this writing, it appears that YouTube has also blocked the channel. The main page states, “This channel has no content”.

Funding is the only rationale. The reason for the channel being blocked is that it was partially funded by RT. That’s it. No other reason. In the reports on MSM about the channel being blocked, in no place do they mention anything about the content on the channel. That is because the rationale has nothing to do with the content. The sole rationale is who funds the channel.

Subject matters. The content on In The Now focused primarily on such subjects as anti-war, anti-regime change messaging, anti-racism, environmental protection and the Yellow Vest Movement, meant to be attractive to younger viewers and Millennials, though their content was popular with many Progressives, garnering over 2.5 billion views and over 2 million regular subscribers. So if the name of the channel is familiar, it’s because you have probably personally seen some of their content.

Compare. Now, try going on FB and YT and searching for content from any corporate MSM source. Not a single one of them is blocked. Do we hear questioning or objections to their bias or agenda while they accept funding from military contractors and oil companies? Do they divulge that bias? Their bias has been proven time and again for decades.

Not just social media. It is not only social media conducting censorship. Google and Yahoo conduct their own censorship in the form of altering algorithms to push any Progressive content far back in the rankings, even if certain Progressive sites have far more traffic than their detractors. If you search for information regarding In The Now this moment, the only things you will find several pages deep are articles and videos which proclaim In The Now and RT as “Russian propaganda”, rather than a news channel. None will mention the content of the channel in a positive way. The corporate media literally tries to make environmentalism and anti-war content sound like a negative and some form of anti-American propaganda.

This is fascism. Some people think it is okay to allow censorship to occur when it is done by a corporation. When corporations own the media, when corporations have conspired with the government, when corporations own the means of communications, then corporate censorship is government censorship.

Question yourself. Americans seriously need to ask themselves why it takes Russian funded media sources to openly discuss Progressive ideas and ideals. Ask themselves why there are no anti-war voices allowed on MSM unless they are being attacked and called unpatriotic. Why is war patriotic? (I ask this as a veteran from a long, long, long string of veterans.) Why is censorship patriotic? Why is environmentalism anti-patriotic?

Funding sources have nothing to do with it. Anti-war voices have been silenced by our media for as long as I can remember. Chris Hedges was fired from the NYT for opposing the Iraq invasion. Phil Donohue was fired from MSNBC for giving a platform to anti-war voices. Jesse Ventura had a contract for a show canceled on MSNBC and was bound by a gag order for years for opposing Iraq. In recent months, FB and Twitter have conspired to simultaneously block numerous voices, mostly anti-war. Such as the Ron Paul Liberty Report and Antiwar.com.

It does not stop with anti-war voices. Other voices have also been censored. Police The Police, which reported on domestic police abuse of power, was removed by FB. FB and Twitter have repeatedly blocked certain voices while MSM attempts to discredit Progressives as being “Russian trolls”, anti-patriotic, etc. Such lucid voices as Julian Assange, Caity Johnstone, Glen Greenwald, Chris Hedges, Jimmy Dore and anyone else who refuses to support the warmonger, corporate supremacist oligarchy.

We have no heroes. My voice has not yet been censored that I know of. That is only because I have not yet gained enough of an audience. For now, that may be best. It is up to us, the general populace, to share our message, either by using our own words or copying and pasting the words of others who oppose war and corporate rule. To raise our voices loud against censorship, against imperialist warmongering, against the US becoming a feudal state under martial law, which is what we are fast approaching.

I have written these words many times before and will repeat them:

We have no heroes. We are our own heroes. It is time to start acting like it. We cannot wait any longer.

Bernie Sanders and Alleged Progressives Need To Listen.. This Time

I will admit that the way things are shaping up, I am actually getting a bit excited for 2020 now. Not for the Establishment candidates already being pushed on us like Harris. I am excited for the growing response to them.

Socialism in various forms have taken solid hold in the political landscape. Most are Social Democrats like myself but ideologies run the gamut all the way to true Marxist Socialism. Not in the form of what happened in other countries, which is what is used as a constant hand-wringing threat. We have the advantages today of information and communication, which previous societies did not have. We also have the advantage that should Socialism take hold in America more than it has, we do not have to deal with the capitalist US government and military apparatus to sanction our own country. Of course they can try but you want a civil war? That’s how you get a civil war.

Now we have several candidates claiming various levels of Social Democracy. Though they do not go far enough and they all still subscribe to certain propaganda which holds them back. Bernie Sanders is the most obvious and has the greatest following.

Of course, the issues I am referring to are election fraud and Russiagate. Millions of his former followers will never vote for him as long as he continues to subscribe to and promote Russiagate and ignore DNC election fraud.

Maybe, just maybe this will finally start dying down. I’ve written numerous times that Russiagate was dead. At this point the House and the Senate bipartisan investigations on Russia have closed their probes with the statement that there is no evidence. Meanwhile Mueller has had to rein in press claims and none of his indictments have shown anything. His case filed against the 13 trolls resulted in him trying to deny providing evidence to the defense in discovery, which was denied by the federal judge. Since then I have not heard anything about it. Mueller was not expecting them to have representation in court. The rest of the indictments had nothing to do with Russia, only regular DC corruption. Not to mention his “investigation” has never once looked at the DNC servers, which is the scene of the alleged crime. The scene of the crime is where any true investigation begins.

Russiagate began with claims of Russia hacking the DNC servers. Somewhere along the way that simply disappeared. Funny how that happens. There were some initial claims that the DNC emails were falsified. Until people started demanding to see the originals. That’s when the DNC servers were no longer part of the equation. Then it became that Russia hacked the election. Until it was proven and stated by Obama that that was not technologically possible. Then it became collusion, which a select few people still loosely hold onto. Nobody could ever even define collusion and has not to this day. Then it became interference. The best they could come up with was what amounted to a maximum of $50,000 spent before the election, which was split between promoting Trump, Hillary, Bernie and Jill. I am making the assumption that the reader is actually informed on the real numbers. In an election process which saw at least $2 billion spent between candidates, that comes to $1 of every $40,000 spent on campaigning. Even for those that subscribe to the claim of $100,000 spent by “Russians” you’re still talking about $1 for every $20,000 of campaign spending.

Yes, those are the numbers. That’s how stupid Russiagate is.

Now, Bernie and Tulsi and other candidates who even remotely lean away from the establishment are seeing the Russian claims turn against them. Call it karma but they are once again seeing claims that they are tools being manipulated by Russia.

For what purpose? To provide us all with healthcare? Damn those Russians!!!

No alleged Progressive candidate is going to have the backing of the millions and millions of us who oppose Russiagate. Poll after poll have shown that most of us do not believe the Russian allegations, do not think Russia is any threat to us and that we have much more pressing concerns. The more informed anyone is on the subject, the less there is to be believed in the allegations. What we do know is how much risk there is in continuing this charade. The risk of war with Russia is something we do not care to allow to advance. The cost of always increasing spending for “defense” while more Americans go homeless, jobless and without medical care.

I’ve already covered how the claims of job growth are all lies, here.

So, is it time we can put this to rest yet? Can we start focusing on policies and dispense with the propaganda? Can we stop covering for blatant election fraud? I doubt it. Not as long as people continue tuning in to MSM for their daily or hourly dose of fear, offense, anger and bigotry. Not as long as our media and our elections are governed by military contractors and oil companies. As long as the media is making profits from the lies and parties can distract you from the issues with bullshit, it will continue.

Until this stops, we will still hear about “investigations” which steal time and resources that should be spent on governing, on representing us. We will continue paying money for these things. We will keep spending more on “defense” while placing the entire globe at risk. We will keep listening to how candidates are “resisting” not with policies that benefit us, our economy and our very lives but with even more “investigations”.

Turn off MSM, cancel subscriptions to WaPo, NYT, etc. Text, write, call, email, tweet to the candidates of your choice that you demand that they stop with Russiagate immediately. That they directly confront election fraud and promote ways to stop the profit motive while repairing our electoral process. Tell them to focus on policies like Medicare For All, raising wages, ending wars instead of trying to start more wars. Do it now. Don’t wait until 2020.

Russiagate Weakens This Country (And Is A Sign Of Weak Minds)

I’ve been following Russiagate since it’s inception in July of 2016. There was no valid evidence then. Two years later, there is still no evidence, even as rumblings say that Mueller is about to end his farcical “investigation” that never examined the DNC servers, where the allegations first began.

Seriously, what investigation never examines the alleged crime scene or summons the witnesses (Hillary, DWS, Donna Brazile, John Podesta) to testify under oath? That never asks the FBI why they never examined the servers?

In the 2 1/2 years since this began, we have watched the media, the DNC and DNC cultists try to resurrect McCarthyism in full force. Anyone who questions or does not march in lockstep with the DNC agenda is summarily convicted of being a Russian asset trying to destroy this country.

Progressive candidates. Russiagate is now being used to attempt to invalidate potential presidential candidates before the 2020 race begins. The Russian asset accusation has been leveled at Tulsi Gabbard, who is a US military veteran and has been in office for years. She stepped down from a DNC top position in 2016 due to improprieties in the DNC process which have since been proven absolutely true and in opposition to the democratic process. However, this is something of a matter of karma. She and Bernie Sanders have been vocal proponents of Russiagate and now it is biting them in the ass.

Who is doing the real damage? She is just one and this is not intended to be a list of names who face false accusations. This is about the damage that Russiagate, not Russia, does to our country. Because if you want to look at damage being done to our country, things which divide us, stop looking at Russia. The McCarthyite accusations do far more damage than Russia could ever hope to achieve if they had such an urge to do so.

Silencing of dialogue. One of the major goals of allegations of Russian alignment is the silencing of dialogue. There is no greater threat to democracy than the silencing of opposing voices or refusing to debate actual issues. Russiagate is being used as a “one size fits all” response to any dissenting opinion which does not fit the “authorized” narrative. Democracy itself is based on the ability of different voices to be heard. Yet the adherents of the Russia narrative use the accusation that some person or some viewpoint is dictated by Putin and no further discussion will be allowed.

Defensive posture. The expectation is that the voice being accused will be forced to go on the defensive to prove they are not a Russian asset in some way. Instead, the absolute best response to these accusations is no response at all. Stick to the issue being discussed and ignore that the accusation was ever made. Force the accuser to discuss the issue.

It doesn’t matter where discussion begins. Let’s make a really simple statement. Russia didn’t cause any of our problems. I have seen accusations that Russia is behind numerous issues in recent years. From Black Lives Matter to universal healthcare to ending warfare to defense spending that goes beyond any sense of reason. Election process and campaign spending. Taxation of the rich. These are real problems that deserve real debate, not false accusations in an attempt to make it seem as though the problem itself does not exist because some candidate, party or media source does not want to address it. So, even if there were any truth to the claim that attention to an issue began with Russia, discussion must begin somewhere. So the best response when someone says an issue came from Russia would be, “Who cares? Let’s talk about it any way.”

Defense spending. We always hear politicians and media pundits talking about “a strong defense” when discussing defense spending. I’ve pointed out before that when all is added together, we spend more on “defense” than every other country on earth combined. I have demonstrated that weapons sales to other countries cost us more money than they make. In only 2 years we have increased defense spending by over $90 billion every single year, with no reduction planned. Ever. Meanwhile we have Americans dying from lack of medical care, exposure from homelessness, suffering chronic health issues from poor nutrition. Suggest addressing those problems and face, “How are you planning to pay for that?” Talk about building or dropping more bombs and you never hear that question. Neither major party opposes spending more on “defense”. Neither one opposes regime change in practice. No corporate media outlet ever opposes the next war or the next or the next.

Weakened alliances. Russiagate has led this country to impose sanctions on other countries. Sanctions are never one sided. They work very much like the trade war affected US farmers. In the case of soybean farmers, China sanctioned us. When we sanction sales of goods to Russia, we punish their trading partners in other countries. Such as farmers in Europe. Or European people who must pay more for oil and gas which they cannot buy from Russia thanks to US Sanctions. Then we threaten our own allies if they choose to avoid sanctions which were never approved by the UNSC. All of this weakens our alliances with other countries, who are turning their backs on us more every day.

Taxing the rich. The media would have you believe that higher taxes on the rich is a Russian idea. First of all, try and explain how this would benefit Russia. It doesn’t. Then, try and explain why taxes on the rich in the US were highest at the height of the Cold War. Which aligns precisely with the time that the middle class had the most growth, the most wealth, the greatest benefits and the most bargaining power in the history of this country. Labor began losing all of this when taxes on the rich were decreased. Not to mention that ever since, small business has seen the highest rate of failure.

Increased wages. If you challenge someone to explain how increased wages in the US benefits Russia, I’d love to listen to their reply. In the same time frame I mentioned above, middle class wages in relation to cost of living were at their highest. Know what else was highest? Cost of production. Because Americans were paid well, had good benefits and taxes were high, cost of production was higher than ever. Yet the economy was doing extremely well. Our national debt was nowhere near as high. Business was expanding because markets were expanding or at least stable. So don’t blame Russia for corporate layoffs to preserve profits for stockholders. That is capitalism doing that.

Universal healthcare. The media and many politicians try to convince you that universal healthcare is a Russian concept. While Russia has universal healthcare, so does every other developed country other than the US. Every one of them has lower cost of care, lower rates of individual financial failure due to medical costs, longer life expectancy and higher quality of life. Since 2012, Mexico has had universal healthcare. Here? No. So try and explain how this is Russia’s fault. We had discussions about universal healthcare in this country in the early 90’s and that was not the first time. Did Russia incite those discussions then?

The real enemy. The real truth is that if Russia or any other opponent, be it a country or non-state power wanted to destroy us, they would be more effective doing so by increasing income inequality, destroying healthcare, increasing defense spending and dividing the populace against each other. Right now, all they have to do is sit back and watch this country implode.

The real enemy is here and has been here all along. The oligarchy, WAR Street is the enemy. They are destroying this country from the inside out and profiting every step of the way. Each time Americans tune in to corporate media, vote for corporate slave candidates, attack imaginary enemies that do not exist, promote Russiagate, refuse to focus on issues, cheer for corporate censorship, vocalize advocacy for wars we have no business in, endorse sanctions that backfire on us, allow our own people to die or go hungry, we are doing the job of any potential enemy, internal or external.