Congressman Demands CFTC Explain Its Failure to Find Silver Market Manipulation Where DOJ Did 1

By J P Cortez

Washington, DC (February 5, 2019) – A member of the U.S. House Financial Services Committee today pressed the Commodities Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) on its conspicuous failure to uncover the very silver market manipulation now being prosecuted by the U.S. Department of Justice.

In a probing letter dated February 5 to CFTC Chairman J. Christopher Giancarlo, Rep. Alex X. Mooney (R-WV) writes:

“U.S. Justice Department obtained a guilty plea from a former commodities trader for JPMorganChase & Co. to charges of manipulating the gold and silver markets between 2009 and 2015, and its investigation into the actions of related parties is ongoing.

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A Few Thoughts About Another Goddamn Shooting 1

By Nicky Reid aka Comrade Hermit

Exile in Happy Land

I had every intention of writing a polemic on the American Empire’s latest shit show in Venezuela this week, another erudite contemplation on the sour virtues of imperialism in some violent dirt floor theater, time zones away from my small town tranny middle class existence. But this week violence came to visit me through the all too common place spectacle of the active shooter situation. It’s so fucking cliche that I bite my tongue just saying it out loud but you really do feel like that’s a problem that happens somewhere else but not here.

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Anarchy Bang: Episode Four – Capitalism 2

Aragorn Bang’s podcast. Also, check out Little Black Cart.

A great program discussing many pertinent issues.

Listen here.

Anarchists have largely agreed on the big two. Central to our politics is opposition to the State, or as we discussed last week the monopoly on violence (or corrected by some as the monopoly on the legitament use of violece) and opposition to Capitalism. This week let’s discuss what that means. Unlike the State, that we can largely ignore outside of paying taxes, being corraled at protests, and a brief hesitation prior to committing murder and the like, capitalism is largely something we “do” or at least experience every single day. So we both despise and participate in this system of organizing exchange relationships.

What does this mean for anarchists? Largely it means that we sound crazy when we discuss alternatives to the existing order. Being in this world and of another means that we discuss moral, ethical, and philosophical topics rather than practical or “reasonable” ones. We have very little to say, and less to offer, poor people. We argue the destiny that we are sure of like lunatics and mostly argue these points with some of the only other people who identify as anarchists who we insist are not.

And our natural allies are among the largest mass murderers of the twentieth century in Russia, China, and Vietnam. For some reason that has something to do with marketing and the way that the Internet makes people either lose their mind or forget the past Old Fashion Red Communism has come back into some sort of vogue. And closer to home one of the largest leaks in this little rowboat we call Anarchism is the even more obscure communisms of Pannekok, Luxemburg, and Theory Communiste from Holland, Germany, and France respectively. Europe is back baby as if it every went away.

This week our challenge is to stake our position on Capitalism. Great oppositional system against human self-expression and self-worth or greatest system? Call in and let us discuss capitalism, it’s strength’s, which are many, and its weaknesses.

The Sordid Origin of Hate-Speech Laws Reply

Thursday, December 1, 2011

All western European countries have hate-speech laws. In 2008, the eu adopted a framework decision on “Combating Racism and Xenophobia” that obliged all member states to criminalize certain forms of hate speech. On the other side of the Atlantic, the Supreme Court of the United States has gradually increased and consolidated the protection of hate speech under the First Amendment. The European concept of freedom of expression thus prohibits certain content and viewpoints, whereas, with certain exceptions, the American concept is generally concerned solely with direct incitement likely to result in overt acts of lawlessness.

Yet the origin of hate-speech laws has been largely forgotten. The divergence between the United States and European countries is of comparatively recent origin. In fact, the United States and the vast majority of European (and Western) states were originally opposed to the internationalization of hate-speech laws. European states and the U.S. shared the view that human rights should protect rather than limit freedom of expression.

Rather, the introduction of hate-speech prohibitions into international law was championed in its heyday by the Soviet Union and allies. Their motive was readily apparent.  The communist countries sought to exploit such laws to limit free speech.

As Americans, Europeans and others contemplate the dividing line emerging on the extent to which free speech should be limited to criminalize the “defamation of religions” and “Islamophobia,” launched by the member states of the Organization of the Islamic Conference (oic) since 1999, they should bear this forgotten history in mind. However well-intended—and its initial proponents were anything but well-intended—the Western acceptance of hate-speech laws severely limits the ability of liberal democracies to counter attempts to broaden the scope of hate-speech laws under international human rights law, with potentially devastating consequences for the preservation of free speech.

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PEOPLE AROUND THE WORLD MUST STOP INTERFERING IN THEIR “OWN” POLITICAL SYSTEMS Reply

By Dun Scotus

Affirmative Right

Recently the Deep State, which runs America under a thin veneer of fake democracy that allows “the people” to put random ‘pop icons’ into the White House from where they are duly controlled, has been having a little trouble with the latest of these pop icons, namely Donald Trump.

Whatever it is, Trump just doesn’t seem to quite get it. He keeps missing his cues, and acts as if ‘real democracy’ actually exists in America and as if Presidents should take all the rhetoric they spouted on the campaign trail seriously.

No, really, LOL!

Doesn’t the guy know the voters are just dumb sheep whose collective memory goes back as far as what happened on last week’s latest reality TV show? I mean, it’s embarrassing to see a guy this naive up front. This is why he has to be taken down or at least tamed, and the way to do this—without resorting to a messy Kennedy-style assassination—is to point out how Russia interfered in the US election.

Or at least that’s what the Deep State thought.

Somehow or other this strategy, despite the full 24-7 support of the mass media, just doesn’t seem to be working. And it’s not just stubborn Conservatives and Dissident Righters who are screwing things up. You even have Leftists, who should be playing along, coming out and saying frankly unhelpful things like this from Noam Chomsky:

“It’s a pretty remarkable fact that—first of all, it is a joke. Half the world is cracking up in laughter. The United States doesn’t just interfere in elections. It overthrows governments it doesn’t like, institutes military dictatorships. Simply in the case of Russia alone—it’s the least of it—the U.S. government, under Clinton, intervened quite blatantly and openly, then tried to conceal it, to get their man Yeltsin in, in all sorts of ways. So, this, as I say, it’s considered—it’s turning the United States, again, into a laughingstock in the world.”

I mean the naivety here is astounding. America—or more correctly the American Deep State—doesn’t “interfere” in anyone’s elections. It is really the other way round. Here, let me explain:

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How the System Works 1

“It’s interesting how figures like Sanders and Ocasio-Cortez are labelled as “communists” for wanting the economic policies of the 1950s (when a third of the US labor force was unionized and the top income tax bracket was 91%), and the Trumpians/MAGA hats are considered “fascists” for wanting immigration policies that are to the left of Eisenhower’s in the 1950s. Whatever the USA was in the 1950s, it was hardly fascist or communist.

In most countries with a democratically elected government (roughly 60 to 75 percent of the world’s nations), open socialists, communists, fascists, nationalists, fundamentalists, Greens, quasi-anarchists, animal rightsers, populists, and all kinds of assorted weirdos regularly run for and get elected to all kinds of stuff. That’s how “democracy” is theoretically supposed to function.

The USA has one of the most tightly controlled and narrowly constrained electoral systems in the world. Some of the most retrograde Latin American nations have a similar system. The different factions of the oligarchy (mostly the traditional Chamber of Commerce types vs the newer techno-oligarchs and urban professional class) put forward their bought candidates as quasi-celebrities, and the role of the media is that of a pro-wrestling announcer, i.e. to pretend like it’s all a real contest as opposed to a staged theatrical production.” – Keith Preston

“Its a rigged game and a charade, and people are starting to see it, even if they cannot describe it in the political language that you just did. Parliamentary systems are better because even outsider candidates can pick up a few seats. The US is actually a Plutocratic, Quasi Totalitarian State with Democratic façades. The electoral system and the liberal and conservative wings in the US are totally bought off, and the corporate and national security state elements actually run the country, with the political class being basically their employees from the President on down. Freedom of Speech is no threat, the US population is so brain benumbed and ignorant, repeating all the nonsense they hear from Fox News and MSNBC that nothing they think, say, or do can pose any kind of challenge to the system. OTOH people are disgusted with government, corporations, banks, the government, and the establishment parties, they no they are getting screwed and the system is scared. So there is tactic of inculcating strife between various groups in society over race, political views, sexism, LGBT, etc. Cultural Liberalism as a divide and conquer strategy. Economic misery us breaking down American society, the fissures are everywhere. It will get so bad with drug use, suicide, nihilism, mass killings, mental illness, that society will no longer function normally anymore, and it will collapse.”-David Alexander

West Virginia Legislator Proposes Eliminating ALL Taxation on Gold and Silver Reply

By J P Cortez

Charleston, West Virginia (January 29, 2019) — West Virginia legislator Delegate Pat McGeehan (R-01) has introduced the West Virginia Sound Money Act, House Bill 2684, to eliminate all tax liability on gold and silver in the state.

Following in the footsteps of the Wyoming Legal Tender Act, which passed in Wyoming overwhelmingly last year, the West Virginia Sound Money Act is a similar measure that will remove all taxation against gold and silver, including sales and use tax, property tax, individual income tax, and corporate income tax.

Under current law, West Virginia citizens are discouraged from insulating their savings against the devaluation of the dollar because they are penalized with taxation for doing so. House Bill 2684 removes the disincentives to using gold and silver for this purpose.

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Memories from Nemesis: Tale of a Peruvian Maoist Reply

An interesting discussion of Abimael Guzman’s autobiography.

Some readers have suggested that I am too Eurasianist in my geopolitical outlook, but I’d argue I’m actually closer to the Senderos than the Duginists. Obviously, I don’t share their Maoist fundamentalism, but their geopolitical outlook was to reject both the Western and Eastern block as imperialist, and favor revolution in the periphery with an emphasis on the indigenous. I’d say that’s closer to my line of thinking than Eurasianism. It seems like what’s going on in places like Cheran would be more of the ideal prototype.

By Frank Beyer

Imperial and Global Forum

“Mao Zedong Thought” was a major global ideology at a time when China didn’t have much to offer the world economically. Chairman Mao influenced a wide range of groups, such as the Black Panthers in the United States and revolutionary movements in Nepal, India, and the Philippines. Mao was also a guiding light for one particular Peruvian revolutionary: Abimael Guzman. This acolyte’s revolution caused radical waves long after Mao’s death in 1976 – and ultimately ended in failure.

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Anthony de Jasay, RIP Reply

By David Gordon

Anthony de Jasay, an important free market economist and political philosopher passed away on January 23. Born in Hungary in 1925, he studied at Nuffield College, Oxford, where he was a protégé of I.M.D. Little, a leading authority on welfare economics. Like Little, de Jasay was an astringent critic, and he often assailed his fellow classical liberals, such as Friedrich Hayek, as well as opponents of the free market. Almost everyone wrongly took for granted, he thought, that the state is necessary. In fact, those who control the state are self-interested actors, not neutral umpires. In this view, he followed the public choice school, but he argued that James Buchanan and others erred in thinking the state could be tamed by constitutional restraints. He was also skeptical of defenses of the free market on consequentialist and natural rights grounds. Instead, he defended “moral minimalism.” The burden of proof rested on anyone who proposed to limit the conduct of others. His greatest book is The State, but he was the author of many other books as well, such as Social Contract, Free Ride, a criticism of “public goods” justifications for the state. He will be missed.

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Against Anarcho-Liberalism and the curse of identity politics 12

At last, some anarchists who get it.

Woke Anarchists

Anarchism in the UK is a joke. Once symbolising hard-fought struggles for freedom, the word has been stripped bare to make way for narrow-minded, separatist and hateful identity politics by middle class activists keen to protect their own privileges. We write this leaflet to reclaim anarchism from these identity politicians.

We write as self-identified anarchists who see our roots in the political struggles of the past. We are anti-fascists, anti-racists, feminists. We want to see an end to all oppressions and we take an active part in those fights. Our starting point though is not the dense language of lefty liberal academics, but anarchism and its principles: freedom, cooperation, mutual aid, solidarity and equality for all regardless. Hierarchies of power, however they manifest, are our enemies.

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Feminism Against Chauvinistic Feminism 19

By Nicky Reid aka Comrade Hermit

Exile in Happy Valley

I’ve long considered myself to be a feminist, even before I realized I was trans. It’s always seemed like basic common sense to me that people shouldn’t be defined by the contents of their genitalia but by the quality of their character. Regardless of where you stand on rape culture or abortion or Hillary goddamn Clinton, that’s really what it all comes down to. That and realizing the basic fact that our society treats women and anyone perceived as feminine like second class citizens at best. If you ask most people, left, right, or center, on these basic realities of American life, they’ll generally (if begrudgingly) agree with you. Then why is feminism still such a controversial subject? Try casually mentioning it on almost any given message board and count the seconds before a dozen trolls threaten to rape and gut you and leave you for dead by the highway. Seriously, fucking try it. I have. The very word feminism seems to bring the worst out of people online.

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Elliott Abrams, prominent D.C. neocon, named special envoy for Venezuela Reply

Well, if we didn’t know what was up in Venezuela before. Podhoretz son-in-law back in the game. As a general rule, I think Trump has been better on Russia, China, the DPRK, Afghanistan and Syria than a conventional Republican or neoconservative would have been (all things considered). But he’s been just as bad on Israel/Palestine, Saudia Arabia/Yemen, and arguably just as bad on Iran (though it’s possible a neocon/George W. Bush-like president would have initiated a war with Iran by now). Trump has also been just as bad on Africa and Latin America. Trump is, once again, very similar to Nixon in his approach to foreign policy, i.e. willing to pursue detente with other nuclear powers and knowing a failed war when he sees one, but still an arch-imperialist/neo-colonialist bankster tool committed to upholding the hegemony of the Empire.

I wonder if Alexander Reid-Ross-Podhoretz-Kristol will come to the defense of Abrams as a bulwark against Russo-fascist influence in the Western hemisphere, and dismiss criticisms of Abrams as anti-Semitism. 🙂

Elliott Abrams

By Nahal Toosi

Politico.Com

Elliott Abrams, a controversial neoconservative figure who was entangled in the Iran-Contra affair, has been named as a Trump administration special envoy overseeing policy toward Venezuela, which has been rocked by a leadership crisis.

Abrams’ appointment, announced Friday by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, is something of a surprise — President Donald Trump nixed his 2017 bid to be deputy secretary of State after learning that Abrams had criticized him.

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Salon Interview: Tucker Carlson bashes capitalism, says he might vote for Elizabeth Warren Reply

Not exactly the kind of left/right coalition I would envision, but you’ve got to crawl before you can run, I guess.

By Matthew Rozsa

Salon.Com

In my recent interview with Tucker Carlson, he waited until nearly the end of a long conversation to drop a bomb: He might vote for Sen. Elizabeth Warren in 2020. OK, there’s a “but” and an “if.” Carlson actually said that if Warren focuses on the economic populism ideas articulated in her 2004 book “The Two-Income Trap: Why Middle-Class Parents are Going Broke,” he would consider supporting her. It wasn’t a promise. From the point of view of Donald Trump and the Republican Party, it might be more like a threat.

We have to put Salon’s interview with Carlson, a top-rated prime-time host and commentator on Fox News, in the proper context. That context would be the Overton window, a concept developed at the Mackinac Center for Public Policy by Joseph P. Overton:

Imagine, if you will, a yardstick standing on end. On either end are the extreme policy actions for any political issue. Between the ends lie all gradations of policy from one extreme to the other. The yardstick represents the full political spectrum for a particular issue. The essence of the Overton window is that only a portion of this policy spectrum is within the realm of the politically possible at any time. Regardless of how vigorously a think tank or other group may campaign, only policy initiatives within this window of the politically possible will meet with success.

That doesn’t exactly describe my conversation with Carlson, but it provides a useful frame. In any society at a given time, certain political ideas are deemed to fall outside the realm of the acceptable. Sometimes that’s healthy, if it drives totalitarian ideologies to the margins, but it can be harmful when it stifles meaningful dialogue.

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Alain de Benoist: Jair Bolsonaro’s program is appalling! 1

That so many Western, particularly American, right-wingers are fans of Bolsonaro illustrates why the Right remains as useless as the Left.

Geopolitca.RU

Elected president of Brazil last October, with more than 55% of the vote, Jair Bolsonaro just took office. The left, which multiplies the anathemas against him (homophobe, sexist, racist, etc.), speaks of a new upsurge of “populism” and says that his victory delights everyone that the world regards as “right wing and extreme right wing” people. Are you one of them?

​Not at all. Bolsonaro certainly benefited from the current trend of populism and captured the vote of the popular classes who previously voted for the Workers’ Party, but populism, I remind you, doesn’t have a precise ideological content. It’s only a style, a manner of responding to political supply and demand, and this style can combine itself with very different ideologies (Luiz Inácio Lula, the former president, was also a “populist”). The right always wags in a Pavlovian manner when it hears they are are going to reestablish “law and order.” The problem is that the law can be unjust and order is often only an established disorder.
​I will, of course, refrain from judging Bolsonaro’s intentions. I sincerely hope that he can put an end to corruption and restore some peace in a country where they record 64,000 homicides per year (more than a half million in ten years). What I observe at the same time, is that he was the candidate of the financial markets before all (the São Paulo Stock Exchange leaped 6% the day after his victory), multinationals, starting with Monsanto, and the lobby of large landowners (la bancada ruralista), and that it was the evangelical churches, controlled by North American televangelists and steeped in Zionist messianism, who gave him the most decisive support (formerly Catholic, he converted to evangelicalism by being symbolically baptized in the Jordan in 2016).

But what essentially do you criticize him for?

​I’ve listened to Bolsonaro’s various speeches and I’ve attentively read his program, which I find appalling in many regards. After having decided to withdraw from the Paris Agreement on the climate, he announced the construction of a new highway through the Amazon, the opening of indigenous territories, whose inhabitants will be expelled, to oil and mineral exploitation, and the systematic promotion of industrial agriculture to the detriment of environmental protection. To make things clear, he also coldly suppressed the Ministry of the Environment, whose functions were transferred to the Ministry of Agriculture, and announced the elimination of the Ministry of Culture.

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