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Nederlog

October 27, 2015
Crisis: Pentagon, Penguin, Netanyahu, Energy, Osborne, Internet, Education, Stingray, Vidal
"They who can give up essential 
   liberty to obtain a little temporary
   safety, deserve neither liberty
   nor safety."
 
 
  -- Benjamin Franklin
   "All governments lie and nothing
   they say should be believed.
"
   -- I.F. Stone

   "Power tends to corrupt, and   
   absolute power corrupts
   absolutely. Great men are        
   almost always bad men."
   -- Lord Acton
















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Sections
Introduction

1.
The Pentagon’s Missionary Spies
2. The Penguin Books story laid bare
3. We have been given a frightful glimpse into Netanyahu’s
     mind

4.
Morocco poised to become a solar superpower with
     launch of desert mega-project

5.
Even the House of Lords couldn’t stomach Osborne’s tax
     credit cuts

6. Gender Pay Gap Widens: Men’s Earnings Growing Twice
     as Fast as Women’s

7. Future of Europe's Internet On the Line as EU Preps for
     Net Neutrality Vote

8. Higher Education: Capitalism At Its Most Despicable
9. Taxman and the Stingray: Revelations Show IRS Using
     Troubling Spy Gear

10. The man who warned us about Donald Trump, Fox News
     and the rise of the idiocracy


Introduction

This is a Nederlog of Tuesday, October 27, 2015.

This is a crisis blog. There are 10 items today, but they come with very little comment, for several reasons, one of which is that it is a fine day, and I want to go out:

Item 1 is about the Pentagon's spying through missionaries it pays; item 2 is about Penguin Books (no crisis item, but I owe a lot to Penguin); item 3 is about Netanyahu; item 4 is about a solar superpower unit in Morocco; item 5 is about Great Britain's Osborne's robbing the poor to give to the rich; item 6 is about the gender gap between men and women: still growing; item 7 is about the future of internet in Europe; item 8 is about higher education in the USA; item 9 is about how the USA taxes, together with 13 other "public services" use stingrays to find out everything; and item 10 is about Gore Vidal, who had a fine mind and excellent well-informed criticisms of the USA.

And here are two pieces of news about my site: I will upload an updated crisis index tomorrow or the day after, and it is my aim to end the second part of my - mostly Dutch - autobiography this year with 1990. I still have to do about half of 1988 and half of 1990. (This doesn't seem to interest many, but it does interest me, and indeed I learned a few things about myself.)


1. The Pentagon’s Missionary Spies 

The first item today is by Matthew Cole on The Intercept:

This is about a fraud by the Pentagon, that moved 1500 volunteers, and that was in turn moved by Pentagon spy Kay Hiramine, who was paid by the Pentagon.

2. The Penguin Books story laid bare

The next item is by Stuart Kells on The Guardian:

Actually, this is not a crisis item. But Penguin books is 80 years old now, and I owe a lot to them, for most of the books I buy are paperbacks, that got popular through Penguins, or are Penguins (or one of Penguin's other brands).

3. We have been given a frightful glimpse into Netanyahu’s mind

The next article is by David Grossman on The Guardian:

This is about Netanyahu's rather crazy assertion that Hitler did not want to kill the Jews and was moved to that position by mufti Haj Amin al-Husseini. The article is under a picture of Netanyahu scanning the Gaza border region - except that he had not taken the lens caps off from his field glasses.

4. Morocco poised to become a solar superpower with launch of desert mega-project

The next article is by Arthur Neslen on The Guardian:
This is about the building of what will be the largest concentrated solar power plant in the world, in the Sahara desert. It will provide for nearly half of Morocco's energy yields by 2020 (Morocco has no oil) with a possibility of exporting some.

5.  Even the House of Lords couldn’t stomach Osborne’s tax credit cuts

The next article is by Polly Toynbee on The Guardian:

This is about the crazy plans of one of a major Tory thief - he steals from the poor, to give to the rich - George Osborne.

6. Gender Pay Gap Widens: Men’s Earnings Growing Twice as Fast as Women’s

The next article is by Roisin Davies on Truthdig:
I recall the rise of the feminists in the 1960ies. It is 50 years later, and women still get a lot less than men for the same work, while presently also men's earnings grow twice as fast as females' earnings. (In figures, the difference is
not quite the 3/5th of a white man at which black slaves were valued in the 19th Century: In 2015 it is all of 4/5th, for white females.)


7.
Future of Europe's Internet On the Line as EU Preps for Net Neutrality Vote

The next article is by Nadia Prupis on Common Dreams:
Today the European Parliament will vote on "net neutrality rules". These are not net neutrality rules: It will - if not defeated or amended - give Europe an even worse net neutrality than the USA and let the ISPs slow down all traffic to benefit the highest payers.

8. Higher Education: Capitalism At Its Most Despicable

The next article is by Paul Buchheit on Common Dreams:
This is about the quite intentional degeneration of the American university system, mostly through increasing its "administrative staff" (who tend to earn millions) by no less than 240%; by making 3 out of 4 teachers adjuncts, many of whom have to do their academic work on food stamps; and by asking 12 times as much from the present-day students as from their parents. Here is the concluding statement from Buchheit: "Winner-take-all capitalism has taken over higher education. The winners are in the administrative offices."

9. Taxman and the Stingray: Revelations Show IRS Using Troubling Spy Gear

The next article is by Deirdre Fulton on Common Dreams:
This is about the stingrays that the American IRS is now using: Mobile apparatuses that "send out signals to trick cell phones in the area into transmitting their locations and identifying information. When used to track a suspect's cell phone, they also gather information about the phones of countless bystanders who happen to be nearby."  Of course, these sting rays are mostly secret, but are widely used in the USA at present.

10. The man who warned us about Donald Trump, Fox News and the rise of the idiocracy

The last article is by David Masciotra on Salon:
The man is Gore Vidal, whom I discovered briefly after he died, in 2012. (See here for the first file I wrote on him.) I still like him a lot, simply because he had a fine perceptive mind, also with considerable courage, although I must say that I have discovered in the last three years that I don't think much of his historical novels, which may be because I just don't like historical novels (neither real history nor real novels). But on politics Vidal is quite interesting and quite good.

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