Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Crisis: The Draft, Transsexuals, Xi Jinping, Wall Street, Trump TV Coming

Sections                                                crisis index

1. Summary
Crisis Files
    A. Selections from October 25, 2017 


This is a Nederlog of Wednesday
, October 25, 2017.

1. Summary

This is a
crisis 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 will continue with it.

On the moment and since nearly two years (!!!!) I have problems with the company that is supposed to take care that my site is visible [1] and with my health, but I am still writing a Nederlog every day and will continue.

2. Crisis Files

These are five crisis files that are all well worth reading:

A. Selections from October 25, 2017
1. John Kelly Suggests More Americans Should Have
     the Honor of Serving. He’s Right.

2. When a Student Says, ‘I’m Not a Boy or a Girl’
3. China Enshrines ‘Xi Jinping Thought,’ Elevating
     Leader to Mao-Like Status

4. Do Democrats Really Need Wall Street?
5. Ready for Trump TV? Inside Sinclair
     Broadcasting’s Plot to Take Over Your Local News
The 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:

1. John Kelly Suggests More Americans Should Have the Honor of Serving. He’s Right.

This article is by Clyde Haberman on The New York Times. This is from near the beginning:

(...) Mr. Kelly, the retired four-star general who is President Trump’s chief of staff, essentially said that those who haven’t served in the military — meaning nearly all Americans — cannot really understand those who have. He may as well have recited “we few, we happy few, we band of brothers” while he was at it.

“We don’t look down upon those of you that haven’t served,” Mr. Kelly said. But then he did exactly that. “In fact, in a way we’re a little bit sorry because you’ll never have experienced the wonderful joy you get in your heart when you do the kinds of things our servicemen and women do.”

For - as Mr. Kelly might have added - the personalities (the minds, the personal freedoms and values) of everyone who enters the military service are destroyed until all they can do is to answer the commands of any superior officer or else be severely punished.

The ¨wonderful joy¨ created by military service is the creation of mindless murderers For Our Very Own Country. Or that is how I look upn it.

What was the point? According to Clyde Haberman it was this:

Mr. Kelly’s statements struck some as offensively patronizing. But they can only bolster the conviction of those among us who believe that reinstating military conscription, or requiring some form of alternative national service, deserves serious consideration — and that the country would be the better for it.

Reviving the draft, abandoned in 1973, would mean that most American families have skin in the game when their political leaders embroil the country in a war of choice. It doesn’t take much of an intuitive leap to guess that the last 16 years of war would have unfolded differently if more than a tiny cadre of America’s sons and daughters had to fight.

Quite possibly so. But the USA´s rich and powerful sleep very much better if they know that their own kids will not be drafted, and because the rich bought most of the rest, they are capable of saying what will happen.

And bringing back the draft is one of those things that will not happen without a revolution. It´s the same with all other denials of real democracy that have flowered in the USA now that the rich bought nearly alll the powers there are, and control both dominant parties.

2. When a Student Says, ‘I’m Not a Boy or a Girl’

This article is by Zoe Greenberg on The New York Times. It starts as follows:

At the age of 15, after rehearsing in the shower, Sofia Martin made an announcement to the students at Puget Sound Community School.

“I’ve been thinking a lot about who I am,” Sofia recalled saying at the morning meeting, a daily assembly of the school’s 52 students and staff members. “I’ve come to the decision that I’m nonbinary, which means that I’m not a boy or a girl.” Sofia asked the teachers and the students, who are in grades six through 12, to use the pronouns they or them, which they promised to do.
I happen to be a bit smarter than most. What would have happened if at 15 I would have said ¨I´ve been thinking a lot about who I am. I´ve come to the conclusion that I am not as stupid as you are, nor as willfully ignorant - and therefore I will only answer to ¨thou¨ and ¨thee¨¨?

I was 15 in 1965, and what would have happened is that I would have been declared mad - insane - and would have had major difficulties, even if it would not have been denied that I am smarter than most.

But these days you can get special treatment including, it seems, changes to one´s genitalia that are to be paid by the health insurances.

Also - as indeed pointed out - while you clearly are born with female genitalia, you are allowed, in a completely politically correct manner, to deny the rights of everybody else in your class or your school to speak the truth about you: While physically you are a girl, in postmodern reality you ¨are¨ - at 15 - who you say you are, and if that does not fit with the commonly accepted facts, too bad for the facts.

I am against this, both as a psychologist and as somebody who is now regarded as crazy since about 40 years because I do not accept the judgement of medical persons that I am insane - which I am, according to them, because I say I am ill while the medical professors can´t find anything (and that also is their ¨proof¨, they - falsely - claim).

There are very probably more people with ME/CFS than there are persons who think at 15 that because they decided that they are ¨non-binaries¨ everybody else must agree with them.

There also have been known very many illnesses through history that were not recognized for a very long time. There have been no persons - or hardly any - who insisted that they (?) were born ¨in the wrong body¨ until well into the 20th Century.

Too bad for those who think they are ill while medical science can´t find a cause; happy for those who think they are born within the wrong body:

All of the people with ME/CFS have been as systematically discrimina- ted since 1980 as I have been: All of the 17 millions with ME/CFS - including medical doctors, psychiatrists, psychologists  etc. - are considered to be insane because these 17 million insist they are ill, and that medicine does not know everything there is to know about any disease or the human body.

But not according to the all-knowing geniuses who are medical persons.

Here is one more bit about this:

At some schools, teaching for and about transgender people is a battle, epitomized by nationwide debates over “bathroom bills.” But at others, educators aren’t battling against trans students or their needs. Instead, schools like Puget Sound are altering their policies to include transgender kids and, more broadly, to make gender a deliberate part of the curriculum. Students are leading the way, driving schools to adopt more inclusive teaching methods.

Well, it is not about ¨the bathroom¨. In the end what it is really about is medicine, which has gone crazy under many political demands on it and has given up the facts to judge by dreams, illusions, wishful thinking and bullshit:

If you feel ill but medicine cannot find the cause, you are insane. If you think, age 15, while being born a boy or a girl, that you are not a boy and not a girl, you are admirably sane and ought to be protected by medical people.

In either case, if that is medicine, I am sorry, but I don´t want anything to do with the medics who practise this bullshit. [2]

3. China Enshrines ‘Xi Jinping Thought,’ Elevating Leader to Mao-Like Status

This article is by Chris Buckley on The New York Times. It starts as follows:

China’s Communist Party on Tuesday elevated President Xi Jinping to the same exalted status as the nation’s founding father, Mao Zedong, by writing his name and ideas into the party constitution.

The historic decision, at the end of a weeklong party congress, sent a clear signal to officials throughout China that questioning Mr. Xi and his policies would be ideological heresy.

The decision solidified Mr. Xi’s position as China’s most powerful leader in decades after only five years of leading the country, making it harder for rivals to challenge him and his policies.

Yes indeed. In fact, I found yesterday myself - by accident: I was looking into the Wikipedia about the consequences of Maoism - that there now is what looks extremely much like Mao´s Little Red Book, except that these thoughts (¨Thoughts¨?) are not Mao´s but Xi´s:

While there may be no “Little Red Book” of quotations for mass consumption like in the bygone Mao era, Mr. Xi’s thinking will now infuse every aspect of party ideology in schools, the media and government agencies.

In the near future, Chinese people are likely to refer to Mr. Xi’s doctrines as simply “Xi Jinping Thought,” a flattering echo of “Mao Zedong Thought.”
Restoring China to greatness is a central message of Mr. Xi’s philosophy. That goal already has guided Mr. Xi’s policies of building up the military, strengthening domestic controls and raising China’s profile in global affairs.

I´d say Xi Pinjing looks like another Mao Zedong and I am far from happy. It is true that China and the world differ rather a lot from what they were in the 1960ies and 1970ies, and that indeed does make a difference, but I am not happy when I see the leader of over a billion persons engage in what seem to me dreams of personal power.

There is considerably more in the article, that is recommended.  

4. Do Democrats Really Need Wall Street?

This article is by Harvey J. Kaye on Common Dreams. This is from near the beginning:

Douglas Schoen, said to have been Bill Clinton’s favorite pollster during his presidency, has taken to the op-ed page of The New York Times to warn center-right party members and friends that ‘all Hell will break loose’ if the Democrats embrace a platform promising “wealth redistribution through higher taxes and Medicare for all” and utilizing democracy to challenge the power of money. Don’t be bewitched by the fantasies of folks such as Sens. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) and Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), Schoen counsels, for if you do, the American financial elite will not keep the party’s “coffers full.” Indeed, he argues, “Democrats should strengthen their ties to Wall Street,” for “America is a center-right, pro-capitalist nation.”

I think Mr. Schoen - whose name means ¨Beautiful¨ in German - is completely right (from his own point of view): The betrayers of the workers and the poor that make up the majority of the Democrats would be out of their minds if they did not succeed in raking in more millions or billions for themselves than they did since Bill Clinton took over power.

Here are more of the thoughts and desires or Mr. Schoen:

More critically, Schoen also wants us to forget how Presidents Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton turned their backs on the Franklin Roosevelt Democratic tradition and proceeded to turn liberalism into neoliberalism. He wants us to forget how Carter alienated working people, opening the door to the conservative administration of Ronald Reagan, by deregulating key sectors of the economy and instituting, in Carter’s own words, “austerity” in government while corporations were exporting jobs, busting unions and devastating communities.

Yes indeed, although Jimmie Carter - to the best of my knowledge - did not do as much harm as did Bill Clinton and Barack Obama. Then again, ¨harm¨, no doubt, is as relative a term as is ¨Democrat¨, according to ¨Democrats¨ like Mr. Schoen, and a ¨Democrat¨ like Mr. Schoen has a long history of betraying democratic voters, indeed in ¨the best traditions¨ of the many rich Democrats that went before him.

Most critically, Schoen wants us to forget the democratic roots and achievements of what historian Arthur Schlesinger, Jr. called “the long Age of Roosevelt.” He utterly effaces from the Democratic story the historic and history-making “center-left coalition” that FDR and the New Dealers built — the coalition of tough-minded liberals and progressives, backed by working people in all their diversity, which regulated ruthless capitalism, taxed the rich (who nonetheless still seemed to be living high on the hog), rebuilt the nation’s infrastructure, improved the environment, created social security, empowered labor, rescued and supported farmers, fueled consumer movements and enlarged the “We” in “We the People.”

Well... yes and no: I agree with Mr. Kaye on what Mr. Schoen wants, but - I am sorry, but I have read Keynes - I disagree with Kaye about who is responsible for ¨FDR and the New Dealers¨: Indeed Roosevelt, but only in part, for the main ideas were John Maynard Keynes´s, who also succeeded introducing these ideas into mainstream economics, indeed until well in the 1970ies.

And this is a recommended article.

5. Ready for Trump TV? Inside Sinclair Broadcasting’s Plot to Take Over Your Local News

This article is by Andy Kroll on Mother Jones. This is from somewhere in the beginning:
After a campaign season spent boosting Trump, Sinclair looks set to grow even bigger thanks to the president’s appointees at the Federal Communications Commission: In May, the company announced a $3.9 billion deal to acquire Tribune Media’s 42 TV stations, which would give Sinclair access to New York, Los Angeles, and Chicago, the nation’s three largest media markets. The deal—and, for many, Sinclair itself—came to prominence after John Oliver blasted it in an episode of his HBO show, Last Week Tonight, that has been seen more than 6 million times on YouTube. Experts believe the FCC will approve the merger, despite critics on the left and right who argue the deal will give Sinclair far more reach into American households than the law allows.
I skipped the first three paragraphs, for these are about the age, the jowls, the silver hair (¨a head full¨), the three brothers, and the aimless wanderings about of Mr. Sinclair, which are not in my attention and which I would guess (a bit hesitantly, indeed) are also not in the attention of most readers of Mother Jones.

Here is the main message:

But under the leadership of Ajit Pai, a Republican who joined the commission in 2012 and whom Trump elevated to chairman, the FCC has seemingly gone out of its way to grease the wheels for the Sinclair-Tribune merger, reinstating a rule from the Reagan era that could help the company avoid limits on media consolidation. “The FCC is gaming the rules to directly benefit Sinclair,” says Craig Aaron, the president of the public interest group Free Press.

If the merger is approved, Sinclair’s broadcasts will reach 72 percent of all households.
Yes indeed. And it will probably be accepted, and thus brings neofascism again a whole lot closer, especially since well over 50% of the American population is not capable (anymore) of judging what its own real interests are or - even - in reading beyond their own very narrow circles of interest.

There is more in the article, that is recommended.


I have now been saying since the end of 2015 that 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 (!!).

[2] Note that what I am protesting against is the sickness of medicine, that I am quite certain of since 90% of the 30 medics (mostly so-called ¨medical specialists¨) that my ex and I have seen did not even know about the existence of ME/CFS (as they should have: it was quite well described in 1965), but nevertheless 90% of the 30 insisted that we - in the first few years of our study of psychology - must be mad because we insisted we were ill and not insane.

Again, my guess is that 90% of the same medics would have embraced the possibility of medically remaking the genitals of 15 year olds who insisted that they were not boys and not girls.

And if my guess may have been a little high, it is probably mostly correct - which means that the majority of the medics I have seen let their medical judgements depend on the political pressures they or medics in general are made subject to.

But that is not science but pseudoscience.
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