A. Selections from August 24, 2017
This is a Nederlog of
This is a
log but it is a bit different from how it was the last four years:
I have been writing about the crisis since September 1, 2008 (in Dutch) and about
the enormous dangers of surveillance (by secret services and
by many rich commercial entities) since June 10, 2013, and I probably will
continue with it, but on the moment
I have several problems with the company that is
supposed to take care that my site is visible 
and with my health.
explained, the crisis files will have a different
format from July 1, 2017: I will now list the items
I selected as I did before (title + link) but I add one
selection from the selected item to give my readers a bit
of a taste of the item linked.
So the new format is as follows:
Link to an item with its orginal title,
One selection (usually) from that item
Possibly followed by a brief comment by
me (not indented).
This is illustrated below, in selections A.
2. Crisis Files
are five crisis files that are all well worth reading:
A. Selections from
August 24, 2017
items 1 - 5 are today's selections from the 35 sites that I look at
every morning. The indented text under each link is quoted from the
link that starts the item. Unindented text is by me:
article is by Chris Sosa on AlterNet . It is not
long and I will give just one bit of it, and the reason is that this is
by James Clapper
(<-Wikipedia), who headed the NSA during Obama's government, and who
is a degenerate liar.
Well, he said this:
Clapper is a nonpartisan
voice who has served in both the Obama and the George W. Bush
"I really question his
ability to be—his fitness to be—in this office, and I also am beginning
to wonder about his motivation for it," Clapper told Lemon.
He called the rally
"downright scary and disturbing," condemning the president for his
"behavior and divisiveness and complete intellectual, moral and ethical
Clapper wondered aloud
about Trump's chances of remaining in office, asking, "How much longer
does the country have to, to borrow a phrase, endure this nightmare?"
First, it is rather
odd to see one of the biggest spies there has ever been, who spies
on absolutely everyone with an internet computer of some kind, to be
described as "nonpartisan", but let that be for the moment (and there
is more on Clapper in item 4, below).
Second, while it so
happens that I agree with Clapper, I think his "motivation" to speak up
now has little to do with his personal worries, motives, or interests,
while it has - probably - a lot tot do with the campaign he and
his mates in the NSA and the Deep State have been conducting to stop
Trump's presidency, which they are strongly interested in because they
- the NSA and the Deep State - cannot control Trump (who is not sane, in my
opinion, and that of many other psychologists).
And third, while I don't
believe in either Clapper's motivations nor in his honesty or
integrity, I think he is right here. This is a recommended article, and
there is more in item 4 below.
Day, Different Audience, and a Completely Different Trump
This article is by Mark
Landler on The New York Times. This starts as follows:
reverted to his script as commander in chief here on Wednesday.
The morning after he delivered an aggrieved and impromptu
defense of his comments on the violence
in Charlottesville, Va., Mr. Trump spoke in a more measured tone to
the national convention of the American Legion, telling its members
that “we are not defined by the color of our skin,” and that the
country will overcome its challenges by reaffirming its common values.
“We are here to hold you up as an example of strength,
courage and resolve that our country will need to overcome the many
challenges that we face,” the president said, speaking slowly and
gravely as he read from a teleprompter. “We are here to draw
inspiration from you as we seek to renew the bonds of loyalty that bind
us together as one people and one nation.”
It was a day-and-night contrast to Mr. Trump’s performance
Tuesday night in Phoenix, where he lurched from subject to subject
and accused the news media of ignoring what he insisted had been his
message of unity in the aftermath of Charlottesville.
But such contrasts have
become a recurring motif of his presidency: Mr. Trump has toggled
between Teleprompter Trump and Unplugged Trump every day since the
deadly clashes in Virginia, leaving Washington and the rest of the
nation with a chronic case of rhetorical whiplash.
The reason this
article is here is mostly because of the last paragraph:
"Mr. Trump has toggled between Teleprompter Trump and
Unplugged Trump every day (...)"
And I think
that is intentional (and he is mostly lying in either
role). There is considerably more in the article.
Trump’s Defining Moments
is by Lawrence Davidson
on Consortiumnews. This starts as follows:
In the last few
weeks, President Trump has gone through a series of defining moments in
which his disturbing rhetorical reactions to historical developments
have opened a window on his sense of the world and the nation.
Let’s pick up the story
on Friday, August 11. On that day the
New York Times (NYT) announced “Conservatives Relish the ‘Fury’ in
Trumps Talk.” A blurb for the article said, “Fans of Tough Rhetoric See
a Promised Kept.” The reference was to Donald Trump’s suggestion that
he would respond to any North Korean aggression with a counterattack of
“fire and fury.” Maybe he would even consider a preemptive strike.
The “fire and fury” talk
seems to have been a spontaneous, uncensored display of what President
Trump would do to North Korea if not precariously held in check by
select others – perhaps certain Republican Party leaders and military
advisers – who will now try to sublimate the President’s belligerency
into a new strategy for Afghanistan.
As is typical of
spontaneous responses, the “fire and fury” outburst was contextualized
not by historical facts or thought-out policy, but rather by the
uninhibited personality of the responder.
At this point it should
be noted that it has taken centuries to mature a set of diplomatic
rules and practices which even now only just manages to keep the
aggressive behavior of most nation-states in check. To see the
President of the United States treat that history as if it meant little
is chilling. Just as chilling is the response of the President’s “base.”
In fact, this is part of a
discussion of the first "defining moment" that Davidson discerns. There
is more on this in the next item.
And this is from the end of
the article (that is the reason it is here):
Yes indeed: The
"alternative" to Trump "is a
dysfunctional Democratic Party, which, under its present leadership,
has proven incapable of checking the reactionary trend besetting the
Most Americans, if
pressed to take a side, would probably stand against the real Donald
Trump revealed by these recent defining moments. However, in order for
them to effectively take that stand, there needs to be a political
alternative – an institutional choice that allows for the political
defeat of the rightwing radicals.
When we look around for
that alternative, all we find is a dysfunctional Democratic Party,
which, under its present leadership, has proven incapable of checking
the reactionary trend besetting the nation. So, the U.S. is in both
political and cultural limbo. Its citizens are left asking if Donald
Trump’s defining moments will also define their own future.
There is considerably more in the article, that is recommended.
Anyone Stop Trump From Launching Nuclear Weapons?
is by David Corn on Mother Jones. It has a subtitle that answers the
question in the title:
there’s a “full-scale mutiny.”
And to the best of my
knowledge that is a correct answer. The article starts as
After President Donald
Trump’s unhinged performance at a Phoenix rally on Tuesday night,
former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper made a
“I really question his ability to be—his fitness to be in this office.”
Clapper, who is generally measured and nonpartisan, then said he was
worried about Trump’s control of the US nuclear arsenal. “[If] in a fit
of pique he decides to do something about Kim Jong Un, there’s actually
very little to stop him,” he said. “The whole [nuclear weapons] system
is built to ensure rapid response if necessary. So there’s very little
in the way of controls over exercising a nuclear option, which is
pretty damn scary.”
I quoted part of James
Clapper in item 1. Here is a bit more on this -
extremely frightening - person:
I think myself that Clapper
is an enormous liar
(see here, for example), who also is one of the greatest (in
terms of materials stolen from probably billions of persons)
and most contemptible spies there has ever been,
who doesn't spy only on governments, on the military and on
other spies, but who spies mostly, still in nearly total secrecy,
on his own ordinary people and on the ordinary people who live
The reason he does
so is given as terrorism,
which is a stark lie:
What he wants is the
materials to have everyone known as fully as he can, in
order to manipulate them in the interests of the American
government and those who support it financially, that are the
numerically few rich, and indeed to fully control nearly everyone
in the near future. And he has been assembling the materials to do that
ever since (at the latest) 9/11/2001.
Then again, as I explained
in item 1, I happen to agree with Clapper,
indeed fundamentally because of this reason:
"there’s very little in the way of controls
over exercising a nuclear option, which is pretty damn scary."
And indeed Clapper also
formulated the main reason why this "is pretty damn scary":
"I really question
his ability to be—his fitness to be in this office."
So do I, and I am
psychologist (among other things). And indeed David Corn says the
following (which I have no reason to doubt):
No senior intelligence
community veteran has ever publicly questioned the mental health of a
president and suggested the sitting commander-in-chief was
too imbalanced to be trusted with the nuclear codes. Clapper’s remarks
were a stark reminder that Trump does hold the ultimate power. At any
given moment, for any given reason—or for no reason—the president of
the United States can launch nuclear weapons and destroy much, if not
all, of the planet and human civilization. “People don’t believe it
when you tell them that the president can do this,” says Joe
Cirincione, the president of the Ploughshares Fund and a
nonproliferation expert. “Whenever he wants. For whatever reason he
wants. They think that is just to crazy to be true. But it is true. We
have a nuclear monarchy. It is most consequential act any president can
take, and it is the least democratic process in our entire government.”
That is, judged by my
professional expertise, the
most powerful man on earth is a mad megalomaniac, who
[a]t any given moment,
for any given reason—or for no reason— (..) can launch nuclear weapons
and destroy much, if not all, of the planet and human civilization.
I did know this
already, and it is for this reason that I, who believes that Trump is a mad megalomaniac
for a long time, do not feel capable of setting my
probabilities for Trump's not launching atomic weapons at
better than 50/50.
That is, I simply don't
know: All human beings depend on the self-control of a madman - or
so it seems to me. And here is more on the madman:
Trump Lied and Lied and Lied in Arizona
This is by Kevin Drum
on Mother Jones. This is from the (short) article:
The remarkable part is
that he just told lie after lie after lie with barely a pause for
breath. And everyone in the audience, most of whom probably don’t
follow this stuff in gruesome detail, believed him. His 15-minute rant
about Charlottesville—which he had prepared notes for—was just
a flat-out lie about what he said, when he said it, and what he was
criticized for. After that he lied about CNN turning off their cameras.
He lied about the size of the protest outside. He lied about job
creation. He lied about his tweeting. He lied (yet again) about the New
York Times apologizing for its campaign coverage of him. He lied
about the media ignoring big stories. He lied about auto companies
bringing jobs back to America. He lied about how much illegal
immigration has declined. He lied about extreme vetting. He lied about
Obamacare. He lied about how close he was to repealing it. He lied
about defense spending. He lied about clean coal. He lied about
economic growth. He lied about corporate tax rates.
It was a 77-minute
spittle-flecked presentation of alternate reality.
I totally agree, and
this bit is here because Kevin Drum formulated it well, and insisted on
saying Trump lied, lied, lied, lied, lied and lied (and did not
use the nonsensical or euphemistic term "fake news").
And this is a - brief
- recommended article.
I have now been saying since the end of 2015 that xs4all.nl is systematically
ruining my site by NOT updating it within a few seconds,
as it did between 1996 and 2015, but by updating it between
two to seven days later, that is, if I am lucky.
They have claimed that my site was wrongly named in html: A lie.
They have claimed that my operating system was out of date: A lie.
And they just don't care for my site, my interests, my values or my
ideas. They have behaved now for 1 1/2 years as if they are the
eagerly willing instruments of the US's secret services, which I will
from now on suppose they are (for truth is dead in Holland).
The only two reasons I remain with xs4all is that my site has been
there since 1996, and I have no reasons whatsoever to suppose that any
other Dutch provider is any better (!!).
 Incidentally, the "alternative media"
(when contrasted with the mainstream media) are also getting
worse all the time, and do so without any prior information:
Truthdig vastly worsened it's screen presentation
recently (it seems to get more readers who use cellphones) and AlterNet
if you want to read them (which I hate, because it is a spying