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Sunday, August 27, 2017

Libertarian Bait and Switch -- The role of James M Buchanan

I'm wading through a rather large book named "Democracy in Chains" by Nancy MacLean. The book focuses on James M. Buchanan, the Koch Brothers and their role in allowing elitist activsts to use exoteric movements to promote esoteric causes via deception and manipulation. Her book focuses on how the Far right expresses itself through movements that are basically projects of program offices based in far right institutions. She fills in much of the story of how the University of Virginia helped birth a deeply subversive movement when it founded "Thomas Jefferson Center for Studies in Political Economy." It follows familiar territories and provides missing pieces to the puzzle of how this all was integrated. She helps demonstrate how:

"What we think of as dysfunction is the result of years of strategic effort." [Review]

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Trump Goes Full Nixon

Trump gave a policy speech last night. He sounded so incoherent I fell asleep. Before he gave it I figured he might try something old as new (see: "Will Trump Create an American East India Company"). As bad as that idea was and yes the Robert Clive idea may be completely mercenary and privateering (and therefore so Trump) but at least it would have shown some imagination. He went Nixon instead. Incoherent and tricky.

He made three points that, like his Watergate-like corrupt politics remind me of 1969. His speech was pure Nixon:

Monday, August 21, 2017

Will Trump Create an American East India Company?

Trump is going to give a policy speech tonight. If he promises to keep troops in Afghanistan and the Mideast he'll be doing what every other flaccid spine Politician does to avoid humiliation, with one of these wars. I suspect he has another idea in mind; to privatize the war. Trump is a privateer, and as I wrote previously; Privatization is a tool of Privateering, and has been since a group of "adventurers" (pirates) and businessmen (same) petitioned for the Creation of the East India Company around 1600. This would duck responsibility for human life by offshoring it and shucking it off to yet another International Company.

I believe that Trump is going to try to establish an "American East India Company" to privatize our Efforts in the middle east ala Blackwater and Erik Prince's other freebooting efforts.

Friday, August 18, 2017

Freebooting, Vikings, Pirates and "it's just business"

Before we had the Mafia there was the "Brotherhood of the Coast". The Brotherhood of the Coast might go back all the way to the Knights Templar or much further. Piracy and freebooting along the coast of the North Atlantic are an ancient trdition. Freebooting has a long tradition in the North Atlantic that runs from the Bronze Age thru the Vikings, and to modern times.

Vikings Attack on Lindisfarne

Wikipedia dates the Viking age to a raid on Lindisfarne in 793:

"...the Viking Age began on 8 June 793[3] when Vikings destroyed the abbey on Lindisfarne, a centre of learning that was famous across the continent. Monks were killed in the abbey, thrown into the sea to drown, or carried away as slaves along with the church treasures."

But Scandinavians were spotted in Britain before the attack on Lindisfarne.

"Three Viking ships had beached in Portland Bay four years earlier (although due to a scribal error the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle dates this event to 787 rather than 789), but that incursion may have been a trading expedition that went wrong rather than a piratical raid. Lindisfarne was different."

Lindisfarne was different because it was not only looting it was privateering/war.

"The Viking devastation of Northumbria's Holy Island was reported by the Northumbrian scholar Alcuin of York, who wrote:

And it frightened the Anglo Saxon establishment

"Never before in Britain has such a terror appeared".[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Viking_Age]"

Looking at other materials on the middle and dark ages, one finds that long before Lindisfarne there were pirates operating out of the Pictish lands (Scotland) and among the Britons and Irish themselves. And that the Angles, Saxons and Jutes, all practiced longship burials long before the Viking age officially happened. Those burials ceased when the Anglo Saxons became formally Christian. The Angles and Saxons were converted by a common effort from both Ireland and Rome. But Rome, through its agency in the Frankish Empire, was not just going after British Gauls and Germans, but Germans in Germany.

Thus While going "a viking" was a wonderful way to make money the motivation for the viking attacks may well have been self defensive war.

Charlemagne's attack on Saxony

The bulk of attacks occurred as Denmark was defending itself against Charlemagne and waging a defensive war against the Franks. The vikings weren't "pirates" they were waging war on behalf of governments (and were led by nobles so were part of government). They were "privateers" not "pirates."

In Charlemagne

This also can be said to be the beginning of a tradition of freebooting that continues to this day. Now those Vikings rapidly had gone from peaceful trading sea captains to ruthless warriors seeking loot, and the reasons are obvious to modern historians. They were at war with Christian Europe. Charlemagne had attacked Saxony and was at war with the North Germans. To the Norse, Christians were at war with them. Charlemagne had ruthlessly conquered and forcibly converted Saxon Germany and were a threat to their survival as a culture. [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saxon_Wars]

Some Official histories tell us that the evil Vikings appeared out of nowhere and piracy went away when they became Christian. That is Bull. When William the Conqueror cross over from Normandy to England and marched to Hastings to fight the last Anglo-Saxon king, he sailed the channel in boats identical to Vikings ships in design. Why? Because the Normans were, mostly, descendants of Viking invaders. But it gets richer, there are links to piracy among the Celtic peoples of Britain, the Anglo-Saxons themselves and piracy never ended with the arrival of the Normans. The Normans gave way to British Pirates who predated across the Atlantic. Sir Francis Drake of fame in founding Virginia was a pirate. Some of his captains were also.

More importantly, the East India Company, was founded by high ranking pirates and was explicitly a piratical organization. The British Royal Navy has pirate origins. The United States Navy as well. The East India Company,

But of course when piracy is practiced by States (aristocrats are usually the leader of a small state) then the distinction between a brigand, a pirate, a warrior or a "privateer" is one of POV. The Northmen "pirates" were doing something perfectly legal (and lucrative) in fighting their enemies. It's no coincidence that the Viking age ended with the end of a period of warming in the North of Europe and the conversion of the last of the Vikings to Christianity. Christianity put a chill on all kinds of piracy by pagans, and Christian nobles enslaved the common people and weren't interested in free and bold vikings roaming untamed. They wanted good Peasants who paid taxes or fought in their wars.

Normans

But of course the viking age was followed by Crusades in the middle east and the Mediterranean, so maybe the Vikings didn't entirely give up. Maybe the end of the little warming just sent them south to greener (or at least warmer) pastures. Indeed the Christian descendants of Vikings became "Normans." And of course the Normans, Franks and other violent buccaneers were the ancestors of the Royal Houses of Europe (including Russia):

Wikipedia quotes "The 11th century Benedictine monk and historian, Goffredo Malaterra" who characterised the Normans thus [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Normans]:

"Specially marked by cunning, despising their own inheritance in the hope of winning a greater, eager after both gain and dominion, given to imitation of all kinds, holding a certain mean between lavishness and greediness, that is, perhaps uniting, as they certainly did, these two seemingly opposite qualities. Their chief men were specially lavish through their desire of good report. They were, moreover, a race skillful in flattery, given to the study of eloquence, so that the very boys were orators, a race altogether unbridled unless held firmly down by the yoke of justice. They were enduring of toil, hunger, and cold whenever fortune laid it on them, given to hunting and hawking, delighting in the pleasure of horses, and of all the weapons and garb of war."[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Normans]

And of course the Normans were all over the mediterranean Sea, conquering Sicily, Cyprus, looting, burning, conquering, destroying; allying with Turks against Armenians, with Byzantines against Turks, and generally causing havok in the name of acquisition all over Europe. So I guess the Vikings didn't really all get subjected to serfs. Some of them just went off trying to make names for themselves by freebooting all over the known world. And of course they filled orders like the Templars, Hospitaliers and similar that continued operation. So we can see that the tradition of pirates and privateers goes back, way back.

But of course privateering got it's rebirth with "Good Queen Bess" and her efforts to fend of the Spaniards. The British used local ship captains and let them loose on the Spaniards. But even before Sir Francis Drake and Good Queen Bess, privateers or pirates were active all over the Mediterranean in regard to the wars between the Turks and Christian Europe. The

Sources and Further Readings

This is one post of a series.

Post Script

I started this post more than 6 years ago as I developed the realization that piracy was alive and well, and embodied in the Corporate Form. It sat while I read articles, dug into the subject and learned that my intuition and observation was only the tip of an iceberg. So I finally finished the draft post that started the whole thing!

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Overview of the Russian Challenge

The Issue is with the GOP

The Russians have become a source of money and propaganda for GOP efforts to disrupt democracy, protect hierarchy and divert people to nationalism.

From the Administration eliminating the Election Assistance Commission to pedaling an investigation into nonexistent in person election fraud, Donald Trump was demonstrating his support for racism and James T. Crow in an open fashion. Trump is embarrassing the Republican party by dumping Lee Atwater's Politically Correct coded language for open support for KKK and Nazis. For more on the Russian Investigtion see:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FbQYLnXPwcs
http://billmoyers.com/story/trump-russia-timeline/
For more on the Russian propaganda Effort:

Monday, August 14, 2017

Privatization Historically is a tool of Privateering

...And Privateering is Legalized Piracy

    Privateers wage private war, They:
  1. Raise Private Armies
  2. Privatize and Extract Resources
  3. Privatize and loot Government Services
  4. Sell their looting as Good for the looted.

Hunger and Hungry Times

I was coming home by bus from the Docs Office and the store. And, I'd bought more, and heavier Groceries than I should have. Never go Shopping while Hungry.

Now, I faced a killer Hill. Smoketown is a killer town for Hills and the temperature was 90 degrees eff.  So I set off to walk up the Street to cut through the Smoketown Baptist Church. I was already huffing and puffing after 100 feet and my healed fracture was starting to cry for attention. Usually it is just A dull ache. But now it was really hurting.

My salvation came in the form of two elderly ladies in a sedan who stopped and offered a ride. I was happy to accept!

As we ride up the hill we introduced ourselves. One of them started telling me stories;

"I used to live on C street. I've been in your house! All us kids knew the Stranges. I grew up with Olivar Strange and Gommer. Did you meet them?"

She started telling me stories about the people on my street. How;

"We kids played in everyone's yards and ate out of everyone's refrigerator. Except we didn't eat from some refrigerators 'cause there was nothing in them."

  "My mom said"

"she didn't mind"

"cause as she said;"

"No child should go hungry because there's no food."

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Wag The Dog by a Con Artist President

Trump is now threatening Nuclear War on North Korea. The North Koreans have the ability to reply to a violent threat, in kind. The pundits are normalizing his Hitlerian threats.

Most of what Trump says is Braggadocio and bluster.
But when he makes a threat he tries to deliver with all his muster.
Trump has lied all his days since he was a youth.
The whole truth is that he is a grifter

All true, but what do we do?

Trump is entirely capable of launching an attack on North Korea. The pundits may think he's talking to China. He may think that his brinkmanship may make the Chinese will back down. I'm afraid he is trying to start a war.

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

National Emergency Response Service and the Militia

National Health Service

The best way to manage our health care rationally, and to provide for good healthcare for everything, is to put at least a component of it under a National Service Framework. The education, training and minimum provisioning "arming" of healthcare providers all should be organized at a National level and also carried out in each State.

Sunday, August 6, 2017

Pirates, Loot and the East India Company

East India Company Looted India

The East India Company is the Model for the Modern Corporation. This is an extraordinary fact because that company ran its own foreign relations, own armies (The famous Sepoy's), fought their own wars,bribed, subverted, suborned, got contracts to perform government services and then exploited those to take over governments. They went from running trading posts in coastal cities on a lease from the Mogul Emperors, to keeping them virtual prisoners on a pension. They invaded what is now Afghanistan and both loved and despised the Moslems who had formerly dominated in India. Eventually their greed and stupidity forced them to step aside from Governing India to the role of continuing to loot it. Heck the word "loot", both as noun and verb, comes from India.

The Right of the Individual To Himself

Section One Establising the Rights of Natural persons over Artificial persons

Article 1 Rights of Natural Persons

"The rights and privileges of natural persons under this constitution originate in the right of the individual to himself, therefore these rights are the rights of natural persons." [Source: Henry George in the Condition of Labor]

Article 2 Privileges Derive from the People

"Any privileges of Artificial entities established by the laws of any State, the United States, or any foreign state derive from the people and are subject to regulation by the People, through Federal, State, or local law, as appropriate. These rights are not to be construed as inherent or inalienable but are privileges established to serve the public good."

Article 3. Right to participation

All citizens shall have the right to participate in the political process, to vote in elections in their permanent domicile and to effective representation in Federal, State, and local governing entities.

Article 4 Transparency

All contributions of any person, or artificial entities to the political process must be publicly disclosed. Undisclosed contributions may be construed as bribery or undue influence with or without evidence of quid pro quo.

Article 4 Free Press

A Free Press being necessary to a Free Republic, all meetings and interactions of Government officials, elected or appointed, executive, Judiciary or Legislature; shall be recorded for posterity; and unless a compelling reason exists for the deliberations to be kept secret, shall be witnessed by members of the press and reasonable representation of the general public. Any records marked secret shall only be kept secret for the minimum appropriate time for such secrecy, and only those parts such as necessary to protect actual natural security shall be redacted when released before that time. The press shall be compensated for performing recording, reporting, archiving or witnessing efforts by the hour at the same hourly rate as the House of Representatives is compensated.

Article 5

The President shall be elected by a majority of voters. If no candidate shall achieve 50% + 1 of the popular vote, then there shall be a run off election between the 2 candidates with the highest percentage of the vote.

Article 6

The Post Office shall enable people to cast ballots through the Post Office in all jurisdictions where there is an election and shall accept ballots from 5 days before the election to Midnight of Election Day.

Article 7

No Government, State, Federal or local may infringe on the right of citizens to cast their ballots within their neighborhoods and for each citizen to cast one vote in the elections of their permanent place of residence that have jurisdiction over them. Reasonable identification may be required and the security of ballots shall be protected. But no legitimate voter may be denied a vote due to improper challenges of their identity and no vote may be ignored or thrown out that was cast by a citizen without that citizen being notified and given a chance to make a correction.

Article 7

The People shall have the right to vet all candidates for elective office and to require that they disclose relevant information on their fitness for office under oath. All elective and appointed offices shall be audited at the end of their term of office and the information reviewed by a bipartisan or non partisan panel and put into a report.

Section Two -- Second Bill of Rights

Article 1

All Citizens and legal residents residing in the United States or its territories shall have the right to meaningful work and to be compensated for such work at a reasonable wage.

Article 2

All Citizens and legal residents residing in the United States or its territories shall have the right to adequate shelter and to be secure in their possessions within such shelter from unreasonable search and seizure.

Article 3

All natural persons residing in the United States or its territories shall have the right to adequate medical care

Article 4

All Citizens and legal residents of the United States shall have the right to economic care during sickness, accident, old age, unemployment or infirmity.

The above is suggested language.

Background Notes

"This right of property, originating in the right of the individual to himself, is the only full and complete right of property. It attaches to things produced by labor, but cannot attach to things created by God." [Condition of Labor]

Said Henry George in a letter to Pope Leo XIII in response to Rerum Novarum in 1891. Of all the responses to Rerum Novarum his was the most electric & most enduring. Rerum Novarum was cited by Catholic groups around the world, incited Catholic Social Action but also was part of the creed of Mediterranean fascists in the 19th century. It started as a seemingly radical left doctrine, but because it also protected ownership of land, it became a conservative force for the next century and into the present. Henry argued against being branded a socialist. And the above quote was the basis for that argument

""To attach to things created by God the same right of private ownership that justly attaches to things produced by labor is to impair and deny the true rights of property. For a man who out of the proceeds of his labor is obliged to pay another man for the use of ocean or air or sunshine or soil, all of which are to men involved in the single term land, is in this deprived of his rightful property and thus robbed." [Condition of Labor]

We humans have a basic right to possess land, shelter, work-places, access to markets and transportation:

"While the right of ownership that justly attaches to things produced by labor cannot attach to land, there may attach to land a right of possession." [Condition of Labor]

But that right is not unalloyed, without limits:

“God has not granted the earth to mankind in general in the sense that all without distinction can deal with it as they please,” [Condition of Labor]

And there are logical and rational rules to such limits:

"regulations necessary for its best use may be fixed by human laws. But such regulations must conform to the moral law — must secure to all equal participation in the advantages of God’s general bounty." [Condition of Labor]

If man would apply moral law to the access to, control of and disposition of resources, we'd be in much better shape.

Sources and Further Readings

The Condition of Labor — An Open Letter to Pope Leo XIII by Henry George September, 1891
http://www.wealthandwant.com/HG/the_condition_of_labor.htm
Rerum Novarum Text
http://w2.vatican.va/content/leo-xiii/en/encyclicals/documents/hf_l-xiii_enc_15051891_rerum-novarum.html
https://www.brennancenter.org/issues/new-constitutional-vision
Move to Amend's version of Citizens United Repeal
https://movetoamend.org/press-release/immediate-release-constitutional-amendment-introduced-congress-ensuring-rights-people
The Death of Henry George
https://holtesthoughts.blogspot.com/2015/03/the-death-of-henry-george.html

Second Bill of Rights

This post is part of a series intended to clarify how to write a second bill of rights and what should be in it in order to implement not only F.D. Roosevelt's vision, but the lessons of subsequent years. Obama proposed a constitutional Amendment to overturn Citizens United, but clearly that alone will only deal with one piece of the problem.

http://www.politico.com/blogs/politico44/2012/08/obama-calls-for-constitutional-amendment-to-overturn-citizens-united-133724
https://holtesthoughts.blogspot.com/2017/05/establishing-second-bill-of-rights.html

Friday, August 4, 2017

The Lost Piqueteros of the Radical Left movements

https://goo.gl/images/nJ136x

My wife and I couldn't visit Argentina for the first few years we were married. Her passport was good everywhere but back home, yet Argentina lacked passport quality paper to make new passports, and so if she'd returned to Argentina she'd have been stuck there. She would have had to renew her passport there and it would have been months before they could do so. That is how dysfunctional Argentina was. She had no control over her own finances, her own money supply, etc...

Lies, More Lies, Big lie and Propaganda -- Today's News

In the News for August 2017

Trump's Speech

There is so much happening right now, that if you are only watching Fox TV you'll never know half of it. And if you aren't reading critically, you'll never grasp it's significance. I'm not really interested in the ephemeral minutiae of the moment right now. But current scandals are enduring, historical events, so it is important to help people keep up. In the news today, are leaks of Trump's conversations with foreign leaders, threats to attack North Korea, Mueller's investigation standing up a Grand Jury & more and more evidence that we elected a Traitor. And that this has been a long term project. These are the important stories to me and a brief summary of why:

Thursday, August 3, 2017

Tories Rodef and Scoundrels

Pursuers and Scoundrels

The term "Tory" comes from a Celtic Root, thru the Irish,

"toraidhe ‘outlaw, highwayman,’ from tóir ‘pursue.’" [Multiple Dictionaries]

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Restoring the Utility of a Free Press

The Free Press Under Assault from Incipient Oligarchs

A Free Press has to have these three Attributes:

  • Free And Unfettered Access to News Sources and events
  • A means to get paid and eat
  • A means to reach their audiences

Currently all three of these attributes of a free press are under assault

The Free Press in the United States is under attack from enemies & counterfeiters. These overt enemies want to either take over and control the news for corrupt partisan purposes, or to shut down legitimate news and substitute "entertainment" and propaganda. The usurpers are succeeding principally by buying networks, local TV and Radio and replacing local news staffs with centralized propagandists and central instructions. This is concentrating ownership of news and creating local monopoly and reinforcing local, regional and national oligarchic power. Meanwhile Counterfeit news is propagated by partisans with no means to verify and validate accuracy. This news is often picked up by the Oligarchic news as if it were the real thing.

If this is allowed to continue the Utility of honest and accurate reporting will be replaced with agitation propaganda, advertising & purely partisan information.  This is already happening with Companies like Fox News and Sinclair Broadcasting. And the influence of front office and back office powers over editing and content is felt across the media. Meanwhile many qualified veteran reporters are doing web broadcasts or blogs. That is not a stable or efficient substitute to truly free press.

This is a threat to both the Democratic Party and Democracy. Until it is fixed we have to act as inadequate substitutes for the press ourselves.

Dirge for the Deep State

When they broadcast their hate
Talking darkly about the "Deep State"
Pirates told long and dark tales of piracy
And laid cause to ugly dark conspiracy.

The Deep State does nefarious Deeds
Government is the enemy
They said from their captains Desk
While working at some Agency.

While piling cash on a legislators desk
They'd spin their tale of perfidy and woe.
The pirate captains in the room all agreed!
To take a vow among themselves
The Deep State must go!

They feared the Deep State,
Afraid They'd be caught.
But they were rarely even sought
Many of the policemen They'd bought!

While sailing seas of Industry
The pirate captains talked
Of regulative perfidy
The bureaucrats kept telling them

They couldn't take the last whales from the seas
Or drown the earth in poison.
At such regulations they balked.
The Deep State was their enemy.

And the captains in their washrooms
Told tales of Deep State Tyranny
As they waged their private wars
And smuggled arms to all combattants!
"Pick a side" the Captains would say
"We can't let the Deep State get in the way
When there is money to be made!"

When they broadcast their hate
At the men and women of the Deep State
When they attacked big Gubbornment!
The pirates took out their guns & took Aim
They'd put an end to the Deep State!

Many of the Deep State Agreed
Government was inefficient
And there was too much greed!
But the pirate captains had other needs
They were after efficient loot!

They won power telling tales
Of dark conspiracy & pirate sails
The pirates called the "deep state" piracy
And vowed to terminate it.

The Pirate Captains had other plans
For the millions of professionals
In their hands.
They lined them up, calling all hands,
And took aim and fired.

Oh, the Deep State now we mourn
Millions of lives gone
Pirates in charge
The looting has begun
And the killings.
The Deep State was our Government.

Christopher H. Holte