US support for Saudi war in Yemen has become political liability 1

Press TV. Listen here.

The administration of US President Donald Trump is likely to reduce support for Saudi Arabia’s deadly military aggression in Yemen due to the political disadvantages for the US, both domestically and globally, says an American political analyst in Virginia.

“It appears that the Trump administration is trying to rein in the Saudi aggression in Yemen somewhat because it has become an international political liability; it has also become a domestic political liability” said Keith Preston, chief editor of AttacktheSystem.com.

The shift in policy is also partly due to Trump’s 2020 re-election campaign, Preston told Press TV on Friday.

“Plus, there’s the fact that the destabilization of Saudi Arabia threatens a lot of American holdings in that particular region, I think that an important motivating factor as well,” he added.

A group of Republican and Democratic lawmakers in the US Congress are making a new effort to end Saudi Arabia’s deadly war against the people of Yemen, amid international outrage over the Saudi regime’s bombing of a Yemeni prison that killed over 100 people.

The lawmakers are seeking to protect an amendment to the annual US defense policy bill, which prohibits the Pentagon from providing the spare parts that Saudi Arabia needs to keep its warplanes, which are mostly US-made, in operational status.

The measure also ends certain forms of intelligence-sharing between Washington and Riyadh.

PressTV-US reaches out to Houthis to end war as Saudi struggles

PressTV-US reaches out to Houthis to end war as Saudi strugglesThe US says it is for the first time in the past years in talks with Yemen’s Houthi Ansarullah movement to end the Saudi-led war against the impoverished country.

Trump has pledged to veto any bills that seek to undermine ties with Saudi Arabia as he did one earlier this year which banned a massive $8 billion arms sale to the kingdom.

Trump and his team have time and again touted Saudi Arabia as an important regional partner, which plays a vital role in keeping Israel secure while being considered a counterweight to Iran.

However, the war on Yemen, which has killed tens of thousands of people and caused near-famine conditions in the impoverished country, is drawing international attention.

A United Nations report released Tuesday said the US, UK and France may be complicit in war crimes in Yemen by arming and providing intelligence and logistics support to the Saudi-led coalition that starves civilians as a war tactic.

The report by a UN panel of experts accused the military coalition led by Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates of killing Yemeni civilians in air raids and deliberately denying them food in a country facing famine.

Any War on Terror is Bullshit 5

By Nicky Reid aka Comrade Hermit

Exile in Happy Valley

The saying goes that the greatest trick the devil ever played was fooling the world that he doesn’t exist. I’ve long said that the greatest trick the state ever played was fooling the world that only its existence could keep the devil at bay. The devil in this case being a constantly evolving crop of scapegoats often labeled terrorists. Then again the Old Testament interpretation of the devil has always been the ultimate scapegoat. Lucifer’s great crime was trying to mimic god’s omnipotence with a failed coup. God cast the rebellious angel out of heaven but allowed him to continue to play god in hell because his existence served as the ultimate excuse for god’s unlimited power. My childhood priest, Father Foster, probably wouldn’t agree with this interpretation, but as a budding young anarchist, this is the way the tale sounded to me. The devil’s very existence was defined by god and god in turn needed the devil to justify his power. And this is what I see when I look at the issue of terrorism.

Terrorist attacks aren’t prevalent in peaceful nations. No one’s blowing up Lichtenstein. It’s violence that perpetuates violence. So it only seems natural to me that America, a state with an epic reputation for violence, both at home and abroad, should become a magnet for copycat killers. The United States makes over a hundred attempts to wack Fidel Castro and Lee Harvey Oswald guns down the president. The United States turns the jungles of Vietnam into a massive killing field and Charles Whitman turns the University of Texas into a free fire zone. The United States burns a compound full of women and children alive in Waco and Timothy McVeigh blows the Murray Building to smithereens. The United States hollows out a skyscraper in Serbia with hellfire missiles and our former client in the Balkans, Osama bin Laden, takes down two towers with hijacked commercial airliners. The United States wipes out an entire village in Yemen with a Navy Seal death squad and a white nationalist dressed in Navy Seal cosplay turns himself into a one man death squad and wipes out a bustling Walmart full of brown civilians.
I may be something of a wonk when it comes to mass violence, it’s a peculiar hobby that goes back to my peculiar Catholic childhood, but I take very little pride when I tell you that I could quite literally go on like this all fucking day. As Malcolm X astutely observed about the Kennedy Assassination, these are all simply tragic cases of the chickens coming home to roost.

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The Sound Money Showdown in U.S. States Reply

Policies relating to sound money have been the subject of substantial debate at the state level this year, with bills, hearings, and/or votes taking place in nearly a dozen legislatures. 

As most state legislatures have now wrapped up their work for the year, let’s review the victories (both offensive and defensive)—and lone defeat—for sound money during the 2019 session.

The Sound Money Defense League’s primary goal is to remove every kind of taxation imposed on constitutional money. Given its practical importance, the hottest issue in the states has been taxation—i.e. whether citizens should face a levy when buying or selling gold and silver.

House Bill 2684, introduced by West Virginia Delegate Pat McGeehan, aimed to remove all taxes (sales tax, corporate income tax, and personal income tax) from gold and silver. Meanwhile, Senate Bill 502, sponsored by Senator Craig Blair, exempted only precious metals from the state’s sales tax.

The West Virginia bill removing sales taxes passed overwhelmingly through both chambers, and Governor Jim Justice signed SB 502 into law.

House Bill 2140, introduced by Kansas Representative Jim Kelly, included a sales tax exemption on the sale of gold and silver as part of a larger bill rife with new taxes. Governor Laura Kelly signed the measure in May.

More…

Who Am I? 3

Occasionally, new readers will come to this site and ask who I am and what I’m about? Briefly, this is me:

Over the past 20 years or so, I have written half a dozen books, hundreds of essays, given dozens of lectures, done hundreds of podcasts and radio and television interviews, made thousands of blog posts, and tens of thousands of social media posts, most of which are accessible from AttacktheSystem.Com. My main area of interest is the ongoing concentration of political and economic power on a global scale, and critiquing the state and power elites generally.

Philosophically, I am an egoist in the tradition of Nietzsche, Stirner, and other similar thinkers. Politically, I am a classical/traditional anarchist, though with some modern tweaks, and within the framework of a wider pan-radical, pan-decentralist, pan-secessionist/separatist umbrella.

However, I regard political ideologies, religions, ethical theories, philosophical systems, and economic schools as having the same basic function. None of these are “true” per se in the same way that gravity is true. Instead, they are a collection of myths, creeds, dogmas, narratives, rituals, and prejudices that individuals use to give order to their own psyche and to form social bonds with other people. These things are all “tribes” in the same way that the Ibo or Visigoths or Comanche are tribes. I also think the philosophical, religious, political, moral, etc. beliefs that people are drawn to will reflect their psychological makeup and personality type, along with their genetic proclivities, and these things will find their expression based of cultural and social experiences.

Most of the material I have written over the years has been more analytical (in the vein of trends research) than ideological per se (“This is what is happening, like it or not”). Even the ideological stuff I consider to be more prescriptive or pragmatic rather than deontological. “If you really want to overthrow the globalists/imperialists/Zionists/capitalists/Illuminati/lizard people/whatever, this is what you need to do” or “Given the fractiousness and diversity of modern societies this is the most viable alternative political model.”

The Hidden Reason Why Fed Chairman Powell and “Systemically Important” Banks Oppose a Gold Standard 3

By Mike Gleason, First Published on Sound Money Defense League

Chairman Powell’s testimony this week was closely scrutinized not just for its economic implications but also for its political overtones. Powell cited “trade tensions” as cause for concern about the strength of the global economy. He clearly seemed to be blaming President Trump’s tariffs.

But if the tariffs are what ultimately move the Fed to cut rates, Trump will have finally gotten what he wants out of Powell. In recent weeks, Trump has stepped up his attacks on the central bank, calling it the biggest problem facing the economy, floating the idea of firing Powell, and suggesting his administration would match China’s and Europe’s “currency manipulation game.”

More…

Trump comes out against Bitcoin, other Cryptocurrencies, and “Unregulated Crypto Assets” 6

Incompetence not unique to trump but all previous US administrations 1

Press TV. Listen here.

The incompetence and division in American politics is not unique to the administration of President Donald Trump and has rather spanned all US administrations, says a political analyst in Virginia.

Keith Preston, chief editor of AttacktheSystem.com, made the comment in an interview with Press TV on Sunday while reacting to reports that said Britain’s ambassador to the United States had referred to Trump as “incompetent” and “inept.”

Leaked on Saturday, notes sent to the British Foreign Commonwealth Office showed Kim Darroch finding it unlikely for the White House to “ever look competent” under Trump.

“We don’t really believe this administration is going to become substantially more normal; less dysfunctional; less unpredictable; less faction driven; less diplomatically clumsy and inept,” Darroch wrote.

“It’s certainly true that the Trump administration demonstrates a lot of signs of dysfunction and internal division and incompetence and so forth, but that’s not necessarily original to the Trump administration,” Preston said. “We can go back to the Obama administration, the George W. Bush administration and some other earlier administrations and find several examples.”

Preston also pointed to what he said was a “rift” between the Trump administration and various European elites, which particularly stemmed from a conflict between Washington and the European Union over trade-related issues, the NATO and its funding.

PressTV-UK envoy: Trump career could end in disgrace

PressTV-UK envoy: Trump career could end in disgraceLeaked memos show Britain’s ambassador to the US warned London that President Donald Trump’s “career could end in disgrace.”

The British envoy also described the never-ending conflicts inside the Trump administration as “knife fights.”

The revelations came weeks after Trump paid a long-delayed state visit to Britain.

The US and Europe are already in the middle of a tense trade dispute, with Trump having imposed steel and aluminum tariffs on the EU since last May, criticizing the bloc for the trade deficit in US-EU dealings.

PressTV-EU vows to respond to any US auto tariff move

PressTV-EU vows to respond to any US auto tariff moveA senior official with the European Union Commission says the bloc will respond to any US move to increase tariffs on cars made in the bloc.

Washington has also threatened to impose tariffs of up to 25 percent on European auto imports, which would have a far greater impact on the European economy.

Moreover, Trump has repeatedly criticized NATO over how the alliance is funded and pressured other member states to increase military spending.

NATO members are required to spend at least 2 percent of their Gross Domestic Product (GDP) on military affairs. This is while the US currently spends around 4 percent.

The American head of state threatened that Washington would “go its own way” in 2019 if other NATO countries did not increase their military spending levels.

81% of ‘suspects’ flagged by Met’s police facial recognition technology innocent Reply

The force maintains its technology only makes a mistake in one in 1,000 cases, but it uses a different metric for gauging success.

Facial recognition technology is tested during a recent event in the US. File pic

By Rowland Manthorpe and Alexander J Martin
news.sky.com

Four out of five people identified by the Metropolitan Police’s facial recognition technology as possible suspects are innocent, according to an independent report.

Researchers found that the controversial system is 81% inaccurate – meaning that, in the vast majority of cases, it flagged up faces to police when they were not on a wanted list. More…

The Dr. Strange of the American Revolution Reply

nautil.us
Brian Gallagher

“I ascribe the Success of our Revolution to a Galaxy,” Benjamin Rush wrote to John Adams, in 1812. He wasn’t invoking the astrological. It was commonplace then to associate a bright assembly of people with the starry band in the night sky that Chaucer called “the Milky Wey.” Yet Rush crossed out “a Galaxy” and wrote in, perhaps for the sake of specificity, “an Illustrious band of Statesmen—philosophers—patriots & heroes.” Historian Jill Lepore has written that, in the “comic-book version of history that serves as our national heritage, where the Founding Fathers are like the Hanna-Barbera Super Friends, Paine is Aquaman to Washington’s Superman and Jefferson’s Batman.” And Rush? I posed this question to Stephen Fried, author of the recent book, Rush: Revolution, Madness & the Visionary Doctor Who Became a Founding Father. Fried replied, “Dr. Strange.” More…

Tourist buses ‘no longer welcome’ in Paris city centre Reply

france24.com

AFP / Lionel Bonaventure (file photo) | A tourist double decker bus in front of the Eiffel Tower in Paris.

Paris aims to ban tourist buses from the city centre to spur visitors to walk, cycle or take public transport, tackling complaints about nuisances caused by mass tourism, the French capital’s deputy mayor said.

Emmanuel Gregoire told Le Parisien newspaper that the situation in Paris was not as bad as in tourist-swamped Venice or Barcelona but Parisians were concerned about the influx of tourist buses. More…

Video Games That Made People Question Their Beliefs Reply

Gita Jackson
Kotaku

When Scott Udall first played Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance shortly after it came out in 2005, he was in a vulnerable spot. Udall, who grew up Mormon in Salt Lake City, Utah, was very religious, and his family were all politically active Republicans. His parents had gone through a messy divorce, and he’d lost contact with his father’s side of the family. He found solace in Path of Radiance’s world, and when the sequel, Radiant Dawn, came out two years later, he was excited to revisit the characters. He didn’t realize when he started playing that Radiant Dawn would become a catalyst that shook him from his previously held convictions. More…

It took a decade for the Declaration of Independence to matter in American life Reply

Stanford News

Two Stanford historians discuss how the United States’ Declaration of Independence became one of the pillars of American civic life and other lesser-known historical facts about what happened on July 4, 1776.

On the historic day of July 4, 1776, when the Declaration of Independence was approved by Congress, Thomas Jefferson, its primary author, went on a small shopping spree and bought seven pairs of women’s gloves.

Declaration of Independence

Celebrating the Declaration of Independence on July 4 is an American tradition, but it took a while for that tradition to develop. (Image credit: todd taulman / Getty Images)

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Open Letter From Steve Forbes To Mark Zuckerberg Reply

by Steve Forbes

Dear Mr. Zuckerberg:

Your company made big headlines when it announced it would be launching a cryptocurrency called the Libra in 2020. Not surprisingly, given the nature of the times, the project has been greeted with intense criticism and skepticism. Don’t lose heart. In one sense, the idea of a company creating its own kind of money is an old one. The airlines’ frequent-flier miles are really a form of money that customers can earn and use to buy trips and various other things. Credit card companies, hotels and numerous retailers have all sorts of loyalty programs in which people earn points that will let them buy all manner of goodies.

But if you play your cards right with the Libra, you could be to money and finance what Henry Ford was to automobiles. Your new currency could take its place alongside the inventions of coins and paper money many centuries ago. It could replace the U.S. dollar as the global currency. More…

The Gap Between Rich and Poor Americans’ Health Is Widening Reply

NPR
by Susie Neilson

Researchers compared Americans’ health status today with that of 25 years ago and found that health is worsening among lower-income Americans.

Orbon Alija/Getty Images

 

Income inequality in the U.S. has grown over the past several decades. And as the gap between rich and poor yawns, so does the gap in their health, according to a study published in JAMA Network Open Friday. More…

Rising US Inequality: How We Got Here, Where We’re Going 1

Stanford Business
Shana Lynch

An economist and a business advisor discuss what might happen if the gap between rich and poor continues to grow.

A tent is seen next to Echo Park Lake in Los Angeles, California. Credit: Reuters/Lucy NicholsonInequality is on the rise in the United States. Stanford experts discuss possible solutions. | Reuters/Lucy Nicholson

The U.S. economy hit a historic high in 2018, and today unemployment is at its lowest rate in five decades. Yet wage growth for the vast majority of Americans has stalled, and more people are struggling to afford housing, health care, education, and other basics.

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The Long, Slow Death of Venice 1

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The local population is at its lowest since the 1950s, with no turnaround in sight, as tourists continue to chase locals out.

by Chiara Albanese, Giovonni Salzano, and Federico Vespignani

If you’ve been to Venice, you get it. Even the most jaded globetrotter can’t help but do a double-take at the sheer originality—and beauty—of the centuries-old city built entirely on water.

Yet even the quickest visit reveals that Venice is no longer a living city, with scores more tourists than actual Venetians crowding its lagoon, bridges and walkways. The numbers bear that out. The city’s population basically peaked in the 1500s, and though it rallied again to near 16th century levels in the 1970s, today there are just one third as many Venetians as 50 years ago. More…