Stock market soars as America burns 1

As I said in the previous post, current events are no skin off the ass of the ruling class whatsoever. If the stock market is soaring, they’re happy. My guess is that the power elite probably sees the insurrection as an exaggerated sports riot, as opposed to a low-grade sports riot such as Charlottesville.

What is happening now is the equivalent of a group of factory workers getting upset over working conditions, beating up the shop foreman, trashing the employee restroom, turning over the water coolers, smashing up some insured and easily replaceable equipment, and, at most, venturing to the offices of the lowest level administrators, maybe punching a few low-level managers and slapping a few receptionists.

In such a situation, top management, the CEO, Vice-Presidents, Board of Directors, Chairman of the Board, major shareholders, etc. would not feel threatened. They would privately laugh and then fire some middle managers for not keeping the employees under control.

These mayors and governors that Trump not incorrectly calls weaklings are merely lower to middle-level managers. Trump himself is merely the CEO. The major shareholders and Board of Directors are the real power. So far things are still going just fine for them. In fact, the capitalist class is already trying to co-opt the insurrection. Soon enough, Amazon will probably start selling riot masks and clothes online.

The great danger is that if the power elite does at some point come to feel threatened, they will show their hand, and the USA will have a Pinochet-like situation (and a real Pinochet, not a carnival barker like Trump).  Americans have zero experience with such situations and are nowhere near being prepared for such circumstances.

My book on the civil war in El Salvador details what real state repression and what a real armed insurgency looks like.

Krystal and Saagar discuss reports that show stocks on the rise as reopening hopes offset concerns over ongoing protests.

Krystal and Saagar debate Trump’s Insurrection Act deployment against protestors Reply

From a purely factual perspective, Trump is correct that what is going on now is a class-based insurrection, and not merely a protest movement, a series of riots, or a crime wave. From a purely legal perspective, the 1807 Insurrection Act does indeed give the President the authority to call out the military to suppress domestic rebellions.

But facts and legalities have nothing to do with power dynamics. Thus far, the military hierarchy has expressed discomfort with Trump’s idea of sending out the military, which is a powerful indication that the true power elite in the US does not yet feel threatened by the rebellion. Instead, they regard the theater of “democracy” to still be worthwhile as a self-legitimating ideological superstructure and institutional framework, Trump’s Spiro Agnew comedy act not withstanding.

The power elite is divided into different sectors and layers, with the managerial class occupying space immediately below that of the power elite. The upper strata of the power elite are those who control the industrial-financial-technological-military-intelligence-nuclear sectors.

If the upper strata power elite truly felt threatened, they would step and use their influence to suppress the rebellion, just as they used their influence to provide themselves with a “bailout” or “stimulus” following the Great Recession of 2008 and the present Great Depression Two. Martial law would be declared. Demonstrations would be strictly prohibited. Protest leaders would be jailed on treason and terrorism charges. That such charges might be untrue is irrelevant. Again, what matters is power dynamics. Dissident media would be ordered to shut down. Looters would be shot on sight. Curfew violators would be rounded up and sent to detention centers.

The next step in the rebellion would then be a full-scale armed insurgency of the kind that is more familiar in Latin America, Africa, the Middle East, and South Asia, i.e. a literal civil war.

Krystal and Saagar discuss Trump’s decision to deploy the U.S. military on the protests that continue to unfold over the death of George Floyd.

Mexico’s Cartels Distribute Coronavirus Aid to Win Support Reply

José de Córdoba
Wall Street Journal

MEXICO CITY—Mexico’s drug cartels are in a war for the hearts and minds of poor Mexicans, providing them with food and supplies as they struggle to survive the economic meltdown caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

Since the coronavirus struck Mexico, a plethora of videos and photographs uploaded to social media have shown what appear to be cartel operatives in about a dozen states handing out food packages marked with the logos of the different criminal groups to lines of Mexicans. In some cases the videos show the food being distributed by heavily armed men, driving in military-style trucks with cartel markings.

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Anarcho-Populism: Not Economically Left/Culturally Right 4

In recent times, I have seen a number of commentators calling for one or another kind of left/right hybrid populism. Some years ago, Ralph Nader was pushing this idea (obviously unsuccessfully). More recently, Krystal Ball (social democrat) and Saager Enjeti (economic nationalist) of The Hill’s Rising have promoted a similar concept, i.e. uniting left and right populists around class issues. Bill Lind (paleoconservative) has called for a culturally right/economic left populism (which is more or less what many of the “right-wing populist” parties of Europe are). Even Tucker Carlson has expressed leanings in this direction at times.

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The Coming Crime Wars Reply

An article on the rise of fourth-generation warfare.

By Robert Muggah and John P. Sullivan

Foreign Policy

Wars are on the rebound. There are twice as many civil conflicts today, for example, as there were in 2001. And the number of nonstate armed groups participating in the bloodshed is multiplying. According to the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), roughly half of today’s wars involve between three and nine opposing groups. Just over 20 percent involve more than 10 competing blocs. In a handful, including ongoing conflicts in Libya and Syria, hundreds of armed groups vie for control. For the most part, these warring factions are themselves highly fragmented, and today’s warriors are just as likely to be affiliated with drug cartels, mafia groups, criminal gangs, militias, and terrorist organizations as with armies or organized rebel factions.

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You Want Your Grandmother Dead, Says the Herd Reply

Tom Woods and Dave Smith on the primitive instincts of the herd. Listen here.
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Dave Smith and I discuss the approach being recommended to cope with COVID-19. Is “if this saves one life, I’ll be happy” a sensible way to think about the world? If you object to shutdowns for indeterminate amounts of time, does this mean you want your grandmother dead? This episode is taken from my recent appearance on Part of the Problem, Dave Smith’s podcast.

What Would Civil War Two Look Like? Reply

This is one of the best analyses I’ve seen to date on what an actual Civil War 2 would look like. It’s political, geographical, and cultural analysis is spot on, although its main weakness is that it largely leaves out social class (which is fragmenting both the Red and Blue Tribe) as well as cultural/social cleavages among the Blue Tribe which are growing exponentially.

An actual Civil War 2 would not be the Red Tribe vs Blue Tribe per se (although that may be an impetus that gets the ball rolling). It would be more like the Lebanese civil war of the late
1970s/early 1980s with dozens of different factions. For example, in some geographical areas showdowns between rival gangs would be just as important as political rivalries. Also, the fragmentation of the state itself would be an issue (or multiple issues).

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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The War on Terrorism is a Complete Loss for the Empire Reply

After 17 years and a series of failed wars, the number of Sunni fundamentalist terrorists is larger than it was in 2001.

By William S. Lind

Traditional Right

An article in the November 21 New York Times revealed two aspects of our ongoing strategic failure in Fourth Generation war.  First, it quoted a new study by CSIS that found the number of Sunni 4GW fighters has grown, not shrunk, since we began the “war on terror” on 9/11:

Nearly four times as many Sunni Islamic militants are operating around the world today as on Sept. 11, 2001, despite nearly two decades of American-led campaigns to combat Al Qaeda and the Islamic state, a new independent study concludes.

That amounts to as many as 230,000 Salafi jihadist fighters in nearly 70 countries, according to the study by the Center for Strategic and International Studies, a Washington think tank. . .

. . .the Islamic State remains the predominant threat, with as many as about 40,000 members globally this year, up from 30,200 in 2014, when the group’s fighters seized the northern third of Iraq.

Second, the Times turned to another study to look at what our current strategy has cost:

Last week, Brown University’s Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs released its annual report, the Cost of War study, in which it calculated that the United States will have spent $5.9 trillion on activities related to the global counter terrorism campaign by October 2019.

So, the war of attrition waged largely from the air that is our chosen 4GW strategy has, in seventeen years, cost us almost $6 trillion (not billion) while multiplying our Islamic enemies fourfold.  Can we see this as anything other than strategic failure on a grand scale?

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An Anarchist Defense Force? Reply

Matthew VanDyke is the founder of Sons of Liberty International, a security firm that advises, trains, and supplies vulnerable populations to defend themselves against terrorists. He is preparing for an independent mission to Iraq during which he’ll train Iraqis to fight back against the Islamic State.

History NOW is a collection of timely and relevant stories that can only be experienced, documented, and shared right now. History NOW features powerful videos from people capturing significant, transformative events from their unique first-person perspectives. From politics and sports to science and technology, these are the people making history now.

Getting Grand Strategy Wrong Reply

By William S. Lind

Traditional Right

One of the iron laws of warfare is that a higher level dominates a lower. You can be brilliant tactically, but if you are defeated operationally, you lose. You can win tactically and operationally, but if you get beaten strategically, you lose. And if you get your grand strategy wrong, you lose no matter how well you did at the lower three levels. The German Army was the best in the world for almost eighty years, but Germany lost both World Wars because its grand strategy was terrible.

Having failed to copy tactical and operational excellence, we now appear instead to be imitating Berlin when it comes to grand strategy. The new national security strategy published by the White House on December 18 is a disaster. The strategy it recommends was obsolete before the ink was dry.

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China and Russia Train for War with U.S. if Trump Invades North Korea 1

The withering away of the antiwar movement during the Obama era, and the failure of the Left to oppose the Trump administration’s efforts to strengthen the position of the Atlanticist-Zionist-Wahhabi axis (or to even take notice) indicates that US imperialism will have to be defeated externally rather than internally. This will be achieved by a combination of ongoing military defeats by fourth generation warfare forces, and the rise of counter power on a geopolitical level. On the former point, the US is now 0-5 in the 4GW conflicts that have been fought over the last quarter century (Somalia, Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Syria). Meanwhile, the “triangular resistance” of the BRICS, Shia-led Resistance Block, and the Global South is rising to create a multipolar rather than unipolar world. The US has largely retreated from Latin America, and will gradually do the same in Asia and Africa in the future.

By Tom O’Connor

Newsweek

China and Russia may be devising a plan to attack U.S. forces in the event of an imminent war breaking out on the neighboring Korean Peninsula, according to two former military officials.

Lieutenant General Wang Hongguang, the former deputy commander of the western Nanjing Military Region, warned “the war on the Korean Peninsula might break out anytime between now and March next year”; his comments came during a conference hosted Saturday by ruling Communist Party newspaper The Global Times. The following day, the nationalist outlet expanded on the retired general’s remarks with insight from Chinese military expert, commentator and author Song Zhongping, who said China could potentially engage U.S. forces if they posed a threat.

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Terr’ism Reply

Anarcho-Dictator

Instead of a Blog

If you don’t like what we tell you to believe in we’ll kill ya.

– Misquotation of G. W. Bush

After 9/11 a lot of ‘terrorism’ think-tankery poured out of academia and media, most of which was totally garbage. Atheologians and Objectivists wrote fanatical tracts about the need to nuke Mecca to convince those crazy savages that their God couldn’t protect them from science. Christian Zionists were no less enthusiastic to point out the barbaric and violent history of Islam.

There is some truth to this, but the overall historical arc of terrorism suggests that it is an actual effective means of achieving certain military and political objectives. It’s not always effective, but due to its low cost and disproportionate potential reactions it can trigger it can result in an increased flow of personnel and resources to the ‘terrorist’ organization and similar networks. Even if terrorism fails to achieve its utopian goals – to create a caliphate, to abolish the Russian government – it can still serve the immediate interests of terrorist organizers, suppliers and the ‘enemies’ of terrorism who profit from fighting (and typically inspiring more) terrorism.

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Neocons Seek War with Iran, Ethic Cleansing of Palestinians Reply

As a I have long suspected.

William S. Lind

Traditional Right

Those of us who supported President Trump in last year’s election because he promised a less interventionist foreign policy need to be aware of a rising danger.  Neo-con influence in the Trump administration seems to be on the increase.  Rumored high-level personnel changes could put neo-cons into key foreign policy positions.  Just as their neo-con predecessors led President George W. Bush into the disastrous Iraq war, a gift that keeps on giving, so today’s neo-cons want a war with Iran.

The obvious question is, how could anyone be so stupid?  War with Iran is a lose-lose proposition.  If the Iranians defeat us, we lose.  If we defeat them, we also lose because there is a high probability the Iranian state would disintegrate and Iran would become another stateless region.  That would be a huge victory for our real enemies, Islamic non-state entities such as Al Qaeda and ISIS that wage Fourth Generation war. 

The neo-cons refuse to see this because they are playing another game, a game driven by the misconceived interests of a foreign power.  To put it bluntly, many influential neo-cons are part and parcel of Israel’s Likud party.  Years ago, around the beginning of the George W. Bush administration, they helped Likud devise a strategy for Israel.  That strategy called for the United States to destroy every Middle Eastern state that could be a threat to Israel.  That was why the neo-cons pushed the Bush administration into war with Iraq.

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