Sunday, September 14, 2014
1. Article I, Section 8 of the U.S. Constitution directs Congress to regulate the value of our money. A cabal of mega bankers managed to ram through the Federal Reserve Act in 1913. Under that Act, the Fed Board of Governors assumes the task of regulation of our money's value; essentially, the Constitution was changed without the use of an Amendment or a Constitutional Convention. This is an example of Legislative Absolutism (a term coined by Justice Harlan in, I think, 1901)--- passing laws without regard for the constraints placed upon the Feds by the Constitution. The primary result of the Fed Reserve Act has been the debasement of the dollar. Compared to 1913, the dollar is now worth three or four cents. Meanwhile, mega bankers have become super-rich... "how" is too long a story for this post.
2. President Clinton bailed out Mexico with about $20 billion without the authorization of Congress. He did so to rescue a bunch of mega bankers here in the USA, bankers who were about to lose billions because of investments south of the border. Essentially, U.S. taxpayers bailed out mega bankers. In our system of gov't, spending bills must originate in the Congress, not in the Executive Branch. Clinton didn't bother with having Congress involved at all. This is an example of Executive Absolutism.
3. Clinton also committed our Armed Forces to both Haiti and Bosnia...without the approval of Congress. That also was a violation of Article I, Section 8... the portion tasking Congress with the duty of declaring war. Ever since the end of WW II, presidents have ignored the fact that Congress must declare war before the Commander-in-Chief is allowed to send our Armed Forces into battle. Congress was not in favor of either of those military commitments in 1993 and 1994. So, one might ask, why would Clinton do such a thing? Possibly it was for humanitarian reasons. Possibly it was due to a combination of reasons. Possibly it was because War is BIG Business. After all, "Aw, shucks" Bill is a Corporatist, not a Populist... despite public opinion and propaganda to the contrary. Ditto Hillary.
4. President Dubya Bush, the failed oil entrepreneur, greatly expanded upon Clinton's usurpation of power for the Executive Branch by having his underlings come up with an unconstitutional, crazy theory supporting the idea of pre-emptive war. Forget the Constitution--- we'll just attack and invade a country because it's leader is a really bad man and might attack Israel or even the USA. Iraq's oil, of course, had nothing to do with this decision. Also having nothing to do with the decision was the fact that Saddam was on the verge of accepting Euros for oil instead of dollars. That would not bode well for the continuation of the dollar as the world's reserve currency. But it had nothing to do with the decision to invade. Right. Also, once again, War is BIG Biz...especially that war.
5. I won't even get into the greatest heist in American history--- the Bush-Bernanke-Paulson-Obama "Too Big to Fail" fiasco. The total benefit to mega bankers was a bit over $13 trillion...yes, trillion with a T. Now those banks are bigger and richer than they were before the fiasco. Plus, the regulatory "reforms" put in place after the fiasco were not much more than window dressing. Amazing.
6. Finally, we come to King Barack... the greatest violator of the Constitution in our history. He's also the best friend that mega bankers ever had. Yes, it's true that he has fined mega banks billions of dollars. They didn't even blink because that surely beats being prosecuted (which should have happened) and sent to prison. Everyone, including our King, knows that super-rich people rarely ever go to prison in this land of equality. As to the BIG Business of war under Obama, every one of his military actions has been unconstitutional... and a few violate International Law. [Example: attacking inside the borders of a country not at war with us, firing Hellfire missiles from drones at SUSPECTS, with the disapproval of the invaded country (Pakistan) is not only unconstitutional, but a violation of International Law as well.] These thoughts are not original with me, but most Americans may be unaware of opinion in other parts of the world because of the molding of the public mind by the Corporate Media in the USA.
I'm an old dog, and I never thought I'd live to see the day in this land when the Executive Branch could bamboozle We the People into believing that the "Commander-in-Chief" can do pretty much whatever and whenever with American Armed Forces... or the day when Congress convinced the People that laws supercede the Constitution... or the day when the Fed Courts supported soft Fascism here. I was wrong.
Partly just my opinion. Be Well
Friday, September 12, 2014
sending war planes into Syria. Really, Mr. Obama? What exactly is that existing authority? The military cannot be used legally to avenge the murders of journalists; that's a matter for Law Enforcement. In a previous post, I've explained the Constitutionally permitted uses of our armed forces, and the current scenario definitely is NOT included. The War Powers Act does not supercede the Constitution, so that law is not applicable; no other law trumps the Supreme Law of the Land either. Being "Commander-in-Chief" does not permit you to ignore other parts of the Constitution, so that's no good as your "authority" to, as you put it, "ignore borders". [You really have some HUBRIS, eh?]
That leaves only Treaties as a source of authorization. Do we have such a Treaty with Syria? I doubt it very seriously. If we do, perhaps you could show it to We the People. Perhaps our Treaty with Iraq comes into play; but then, Syria is not attacking Iraq. Perhaps you could show us that Treaty anyway. On second thought, forget it. I've never seen you use a Treaty for any similar "authorization" or scenario. By the way, in case you've forgotten, a Treaty must be approved by a minimum of 67 Senators; any "Agreement" signed by the highest levels of our Gov't that doesn't have that approval is NOT a Treaty. So, for example, NAFTA is not a Treaty; only 64 Senators approved it. It's mere policy. It does not have the approval of the People.
You stated (paraphrased) that anyone who harms Americans will be hunted down...there will be no safe haven anywhere for them. Good for you. If, however, you were talking about the murdered journalists, you have a big problem regarding your propagandizing rhetoric. See the first paragraph above. If you were talking about the 5,000 Americans working at our Embassy in Iraq, I don't believe any of them have been harmed at this point.
You announced that we won't bother the Syrian Gov't when we [illegally] bomb their land...that we're simply going to support the "moderate" rebels who supposedly are fighting ISIS. These are the same rebels our Gov't has been covertly arming for some time now. Also, as reported on Democracy Now, these are the same rebels who sold one of the murdered journalists to ISIS for about $50,000. The poor man's parents announced that at a recent Press conference. I imagine you were hoping that not too many Americans saw that one. Ooops.
Mr. President, a studied look into your eyes while you made your latest announcement seemed to me to reveal nothing but oligarchical double-talk, Gov't-Speak, and Edward Bernays style Propaganda. I only can conclude that you apparently believe We the People are either dumb as a post, completely ignorant, or propagandized to the point where we no longer can exercise critical thinking.
What you are doing in Iraq, and proposing to do in Syria, is illegal, definitely unconstitutional, unethical, and bordering on immoral. Among other things, it violates International Law. Oh, I forgot, the Fed Gov't has exempted itself from International Law many, many times. After all, you guys are "exceptional". Yes, you should protect Americans. That doesn't mean, however, you are allowed to go beyond the bounds of the U. S. Constitution. It doesn't mean you legally can invade another country just because it's convenient. I'm aware that many other Presidents have done so in the past. You may believe so, but that's no justifiable excuse.
Like other "Peace candidates"---LBJ, Nixon, Clinton---you've turned out to be a fraud, a puppet of the mega transnational corporations...as John Pilger characterized you, "Brand Obama". As Noam Chomsky stated, "He's much worse than Bush."...he was referring to your peace v. war stance. Basically, you're a sellout. Shame on you.
Partly just my opinion... after over 50 years of keenly observing and studying American politics... and the U.S. Constitution.
Monday, September 8, 2014
It would do we Americans well to be aware of a few facts regarding Saudi Arabia, especially given that they supposedly are our ally.
1. In the last couple months, there were 113 beheadings in "The Kingdom". They were executions of criminals. Some of the crimes involved were: blasphemy (!), sorcery (!), and sedition. Saudi Arabia still subscribes to a form of Persian Gulf style execution that was common in the 1600s. By the way, these beheadings usually are public. That's our ally in action. Disgusting.
2. Many private sources in Saudi Arabia fund ISIS. Are they being rooted out by the Gov't there?
3. "The Kingdom" sponsors Wahhabism, an extreme, almost cultist Sect of Islam, as a State religion.
4. The Jihadis of today were created by repressive regimes (and their jails and torture practices) such as Saudi Arabia, Egypt, and Syria...dating back to at least the 1970s.
5. "The Kingdom" is a dictatorship.
Also of interest is the fact that we import twice as much crude oil from Canada as we do from Saudi Arabia. Canada sits on huge reserves, so that amount likely will increase. We also import large amounts of crude from Mexico, Venezuela, and Nigeria. All that begs for an answer to the question: just how necessary to us is a country (or more accurately, their gov't) that beheads people in public? This is, after all, the year 2014...not 1614. What they do today is somewhat akin to if the Spanish executed people today by burning them at the stake. To the Gov't of "The Kingdom": a mild suggestion--- at least jump forward to the 19th century. To the Gov't of the USA: perhaps it would be helpful if you re-evaluated just who it is that you choose as an ally. Birds of a feather... and all that.
Thursday, September 4, 2014
The USA's Fed Gov't is involved in the following wars. They are wars because Obama is having the U.S. Military (not Law Enforcement personnel) shoot at people and kill them. That's war. These all belong to Obama now.
1. The Third Iraq War, the one launched just recently.
2. The ongoing War in Pakistan, the one where the highest levels of our Gov't order Hellfire missiles to be shot (from drones) at SUSPECTS.
3. Ditto the War in Yemen.
4. Ditto the War in Somalia.
5. The War in Afghanistan, our longest war, and the one nobody is quite sure anymore why it is that we're still there. Obviously, the Carlyle Group, Halliburton, Raytheon, CACI, GE, Boeing, McDonnell-Douglas, and several other transnational mega corporations are enjoying tremendous benefits from that never-ending war, but surely that's not a good enough reason to STILL be there. Is it? Well, yes, if you are a member of the Plutocracy in a soft Fascist State such as the USA---where the public constantly is being bombarded with Edward Bernays style propaganda---then it is a good enough reason. Follow the money; war is Big Business...very big.
Those are the wars of which I am aware and/or can remember at the moment. Perhaps there are others as well. Some may attempt to argue that those five wars really are all one war--- the War on Terrorism. It's a tempting argument, and we certainly have been propagandized enough to believe it. If, however, we engage in some critical thinking, that argument quickly falls apart. Consider the following.
1. The fanatics we're fighting are all in separate entities; there is no "central command". There is no group with the title, "Terrorism". So, for example, the Taliban (whose leaders we hosted here in 1997 in order to negotiate a pipeline in Afghanistan) have completely different objectives as compared to ISIS. They only want to run Afghanistan, as they were doing in 1997 when we invited them here for a business deal. [Query: did our Gov't consider them nasty brutes then? If so, why were we treating them as potential business partners?]
2. The propaganda is this (especially amongst so-called "Conservatives"): there is one group we're fighting; it's "the Muslims", in particular, the fanatical element of the Muslims. Really? So, are they Sunnis or Shiites? The fanatics, the extremists in Islam (not the mainstream) are at each other's throats. They are not one group. They appear to be worried more about each other than about us. Plus, from what I can see, the Taliban don't give a damn about anything except Afghanistan. Us still being in that country is complete nonsense. To think of "the Muslims" as a monolithic, homogeneous entity also is nonsense.
3. Specifically, whose military are we fighting in this supposed "War on Terrorism"? The people we're fighting are not in an Army; they are a bunch of heterogeneous criminal gangs (of a sort). They each have their own agenda. Should any of them ever attack the USA again, it is a matter for Law Enforcement, not our Military. Most all of the plots against our country have been thwarted by LAW ENFORCEMENT Agencies, not our Armed Forces. Soldiers are not cops, and shouldn't be expected to fulfill that function.
Finally, the five wars listed above are all illegal, unconstitutional wars. Three uses of the military are permitted by the Constitution: to repel invasions (of this country); to quell insurrections (in this country); and to enforce the laws of the land (in this country) when minor rebellions make that necessary---for example, the Whisky Rebellion of the late 1700s, or the refusal to integrate schools in the South in the mid-sixties. No law trumps the Constitution, so the War Powers Act cannot be used legally to justify going to war for some reason other than the three scenarios listed above.
That leaves only TREATIES to justify wars outside the USA (if we haven't been attacked at home). Treaties do trump the Constitution. IF that's what's being used to justify the five wars above, I'd like to see those Treaties...especially the one with Somalia or any of its neighbors. [As to Afghanistan, it wasn't the Taliban who attacked us on 9-11-01. Their refusal to turn over Osama supposedly justified us going to war with Afghanistan. The truth is: the Taliban replied to our Fed Govt's request by saying essentially this: show us some proof of his guilt and we'll turn him over to you. Our Gov't refused. Being a guest of an Afghan tribal society is a really big deal in their culture. I think the Taliban's request for proof was reasonable.] The funny thing is, I've never heard the DC Plutocrats use any Treaty to justify the wars in question. Usually they claim the right to go to war based on the War Powers Act and/or the duties of Commander-in-Chief. They certainly couldn't use a Treaty to justify invading Iraq in 2003; Saddam hadn't attacked any other country then, whether our ally or not. The Bush Administration's justification was that Saddam was guilty of PRE-Crime. [Explained in a previous post on this Blog.] As Bush put it, "If we wait for the smoking gun, it will be too late."...sounds good, but that's a completely illegal reason to attack and invade another country.
Any way you examine supposed justifications for the above-listed wars, they turn out to be illegal, unconstitutional, unethical, and even immoral. Welcome to the Soft Fascist States of America, a land I love, but sincerely regret the fact that we no longer have a representative government...and that's been true for decades. Carroll Quigley was right in 1966.
It's a genuine shame.
Sunday, August 31, 2014
Brand Obama recently sent up a trial balloon regarding bombing inside Syria... to see the reaction of the U.S. public. This type of thing is done often by sitting politicians. Even in dictatorships, but especially in a soft Fascist State such as the USA (where we still have considerable freedoms), public opinion does matter. The DC Cronies, mostly via the Corporate Media, put forth an idea that is illegal and unconstitutional to see if the "meddlesome outsiders", the "bewildered herd", the "ignorant masses" (that's you and me) will raise any sort of objection or protest.
There appears to be little or no doubt that ISIS members are vicious, brutal fanatics. But that's not the issue regarding attacking inside Syria. The issue is this: what are the permitted and Constitutional uses of the U.S. military? So-called Conservatives (which now means NeoCons) and so-called "Liberals" (which now means Moderate Republicans) in our Fed Gov't apparently believe that the phrase "Commander-in-Chief" means that the President can do whatever he pleases with our Armed Forces. They also appear to believe that the War Powers Act trumps the Constitution. None of that is true.
What is being proposed relative to Syria is somewhat similar to Nixon's illegal and secret bombing of Cambodia during the Vietnam Conflict. [It was first called a "Conflict" by the DC Cronies because they knew that the Constitution required a Declaration of War...which they hadn't bothered with, just as with the Korean "Conflict".] The primary difference with Obama's Syrian proposal (trial balloon) is that it's not SECRET. Oligarchs don't much feel the need for a lot of secrecy anymore [there are many exceptions to that] because they figure that the "bewildered herd" (that's us) is so thoroughly propagandized and distracted that secrecy mostly is no longer needed...in some subject areas.
Let's be clear: bombing, attacking, shooting missiles into another country without a Declaration of War by the Congress is illegal and unconstitutional. Anyone who can read and has an IQ of at least 100 knows that... unless they are so propagandized by the Oligarchy that they no longer can think critically. It doesn't matter how vicious the enemy is, it doesn't matter that the President is Commander-in-Chief. What matters is: what are the requirements and limitations imposed by the U.S. Constitution? They are stated CLEARLY in the document. Parts of it are long-winded, but it's written with clarity.
It appears that both Liberals AND NeoCons have adopted the belief that the Constitution must be adapted to modern times...without the use of Amendments. We'll just read into it what we must in order to conform to modern-day life. That belief is not only tragic, but downright comical as well. There is no such provision in the Constitution. To change it, it must be formally amended or completely re-written. No other ways are permitted. It also appears that both Liberals AND NeoCons do not understand that our Gov't is one of Enumerated Powers (Google it).
I, of course, am convinced that all the DC Cronies (the Gang of 535) know better. They understand the limitations imposed by the Supreme Law of the Land on the Fed Gov't perfectly well. They simply ignore those limitations... and get away with it. Because of that, the U.S. Fed Gov't (at the highest levels) has become the largest terrorist operation in the world. You don't think so? Perhaps you should ask Pakistan, a country which is not at war with the USA but one where Hellfire missiles are fired from U.S. drones at SUSPECTS. Or perhaps you should ask the Gazans, civilians who were bombed by U.S. equipment (stamped "Israel" on the side, or something similar). Your tax dollars helped kill about 500 children just recently. Perhaps you should ask Sunni civilians in Iraq? Perhaps you should ask the democratically elected governments around the world that were overthrown by covert U.S. help. [Just prior to Allende being overthrown on 9-11-73, Kissinger told Nixon (two crazy people in a conference) that Chile---because it had elected Allende---was "a virus that could spread throughout Latin America". The coup was then engineered.] Perhaps you should ask the countries that were placed under "sanction" by the U.S. Gov't, in some cases resulting in the deaths of children. Madeline Albright once essentially stated that "it [punishing Iraq with sanctions] was worth the price" [the death of hundreds of thousands of children in Iraq]. Killing children, either directly or indirectly, is terrorism in my book.
ISIS was founded as a direct result of the U.S. invasion of Iraq in 2003, the years-long occupation by the U.S., and the so-called "collateral damage" inflicted upon Iraqis. Whenever we do such things, it's not terrorism...but when they do it, it is terrorism. Hypocrisy. According to all our Presidents, other countries must abide by International Law; but our Gov't has exempted itself time and again from any prosecution by the International Criminal Court. Finally, ISIS is a threat primarily to other Muslims, especially Shiites; the only reason it threatened the USA is because we attacked them FIRST (with the start of America's Third Iraq War a short while ago).
It would be great if Americans would deflate Obama's Syrian trial balloon.
Sunday, August 24, 2014
Again, below is an email I sent to a "Conservative" (nowadays that means Neoconservative, a horse of a different color) friend of mine.
HERE IS THE CRUX OF THE PROBLEM RE: the U.S. Gov't and the Middle East---
From the article you sent, toward the end of it:
"But only a fool would believe weapons of mass destruction were the only reason for the war. The U.S.-led invasion, or liberation, was in fact part of a vision to remake the Middle East..."
Show me ANY portion of the Constitution (the Supreme Law of the Land) which delegates authority from We the People to the Fed Gov't to undertake any such task anywhere in the world. Seriously.
That quote has the footprint of an unelected Oligarchy all over it. Who appointed the U.S. Gov't to "remake the Middle East"? No country has the legitimate right to remake any region.
Think about that; I don't see how any person could disagree, especially one who considers himself a Conservative.
The very concept of remaking a region such as the Middle East fits right in with Bush's apparent belief in some sort of Divine Right to "spread democracy" by force. I'm sorry, but that's totally un-American. It's blatant hegemony. We have no such Right. No government does. Our motto should be Zero Aggression; self-defense only.
Saturday, August 23, 2014
Below is a recent email I sent to a "Conservative" friend of mine. It directly relates to the title of this piece.
Hate to say it, but I fear that it may be too late, Bob... for education, the economy, sound money, politics, the whole ball of wax. Free Market Capitalism has been almost totally replaced by Crony Capitalism (aka, what FDR & Mussolini said equals Fascism). The State has now inserted itself into every phase of human affairs. Whether you see it or not, Mega Business, along with their puppets/cronies of both political parties, are well on their way to transforming this country into a feudal society.
Voting is the opium of the masses in this land. The Oligarchs don't much care who wins any election. Most politicians are not beyond their control; the very few who are, easily can be marginalized & made impotent. [Examples: Ron Paul and Dennis Kucinich]
The "Republic" portion of the USA already is gone, or 90% gone. Individual Rights matter little anymore. Voters keep voting in the same type of people (in both parties) who erode our individual sovereignty. The reasons given for such erosion are swallowed whole by a completely propagandized public who apparently no longer have the ability to think critically.
This whole scenario is nothing new to History. Persia, Athens, Rome, etc. all went the same way... oligarchical, imperial decay... caused by the super-rich, and allowed by bamboozled commoners. The USA is doing pretty much the same thing those empires did--- taking away individual rights in the name of "security/defense", and over-reaching in terms of imperial control...thus bankrupting their economies and their reputations. But while Middle Class incomes essentially stagnate, the super-rich increase their incomes by 700% in 10 years. Welcome to 2014.
But the world will continue after the collapse. The only question is, after the Fall of the Republic of the USA (sooner or later), will We the People finally have learned that politicians & the super-rich as a whole are not to be trusted? Or will we again be propagandized into supporting another political arrangement that results in a feudal society and an empire-building, aggressive, and hegemonic government?
For the sake of your kids & my grandkids, my hope is that Americans will wake up to a few facts:
1. the super-rich usually do not care who wins most elections... they control the winners, whoever they are;
2. thus, "voting" will not solve our problems;
3. public & private Institutions, for the most part, are not on our side... they mostly favor Oligarchs.
4. both Republicans and Democrats (at the highest levels) almost constantly spew out propaganda favoring the super-rich;
5. we are almost at the point of being a feudal society;
6. American politics is a complete farce;
7. for the most part, the Constitution has been abandoned;
8. we are living in a soft Fascist State;
9. the new political paradigm is the Oligarchy v. the rest of us;
10. radical but peaceful action is required to regain our freedom and sovereignty;
11. what the Oligarchy dreads is people organizing around just causes... and such organization is our best hope...not politics, not voting, not Republicans v. Democrats or Conservatives v. Liberals (those labels are completely outdated);
12. the Corporate Media (Fox, CNN, ABC, NBC, CBS, MSNBC, etc.) all are propaganda tools of the Oligarchs. Ignore them. The differences you think you see amongst them are phony. It's all part of rigging the Game. The super-rich long ago learned how important it is for them to control the "Press". They've been doing it for decades and decades... and it's not a "conspiracy"; it's mostly in plain sight. To them, it's just good business practice.