November 13, 2017
This is a Nederlog of Monday November 13,
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.
moment and since nearly two years (!!!!) I have
problems with the company that is
supposed to take care that my site is visible 
and with my health, but I am still writing a Nederlog every day and
2. Crisis Files
are five crisis files that are all well worth reading:
Selections from November 13, 2017
Fight the Disease, Not the Symptoms
2. N.S.A. Struggles to Recover After Huge Breach of
3. Siding With the Enemy
4. Bernie Sanders: To Reform the Party, Democrats
Must Split from Corporate
5. Patriotism, Taxes, and Trump
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:
the Disease, Not the Symptoms
This article is by Chris Hedges on Truthdig. It starts as follows:
The disease of
globalized corporate capitalism has the same effects across the planet.
It weakens or destroys democratic institutions, making them subservient
to corporate and oligarchic power. It forces domestic governments to
give up control over their economies, which operate under policies
dictated by global corporations, banks, the World
Trade Organization and the International
Monetary Fund. It casts aside hundreds of millions of workers now
classified as “redundant” or “surplus” labor. It disempowers underpaid
and unprotected workers, many toiling in global sweatshops, keeping
them cowed, anxious and compliant. It financializes the economy,
creating predatory global institutions that extract money from
individuals, institutions and states through punishing forms of debt
peonage. It shuts down genuine debate on corporate-owned media
platforms, especially in regard to vast income disparities and social
inequality. And the destruction empowers proto-fascist movements and
I agree with all
this, except for the term ¨proto-fascist¨, at least with reference to the USA:
I think it is neofascism, and not to let you skip into
vagaries, here is
my definition of neofascism:
Neofascism is a. A social system that is
marked by a government with a centralized powerful authority, where
the opposition is propagandized and suppressed or censored, that
propounds an ethics which has profit
its main norm, and that has a
politics that is rightwing,
anti-liberal, anti-equality, and
and that has a corporative
organization of the economy in which multi-national corporations are
stronger than a national government or state, b. A political philosophy or
movement based on or advocating such a social system
And I think all of this
applies to Trump and his government, altough they so far are a movement
rather than a social system.
Here is part of how neofascism works, and indeed also why
it strongly depends on stupidity, ignorance and egoism:
proto-fascist forces discredit verifiable fact and history and replace
them with myth. They peddle nostalgia for lost glory. They attack the
spiritual bankruptcy of the modern, technocratic world. They are
xenophobic. They champion the “virtues” of a hyper-masculinity and the
warrior cult. They preach regeneration through violence. They rally
around demagogues who absolve followers of moral choice and promise
strength and protection. They marginalize and destroy all individuals
and institutions, including schools, that make possible self-criticism,
self-reflection and transcendence and that nurture empathy, especially
for the demonized. This is why artists and intellectuals are ridiculed
and silenced. This is why dissent is attacked as an act of treason.
Yes indeed: Trumpian
neofascism relies on medieval stupidity, ignorance, totalitarianism,
thinking, and egoism - I completely agree.
Here is the last bit that I´ll quote from this article:
There are within
America’s corporate power structures individuals, parties and groups
that find the hysterical, imbecilic and irrational rants of demagogues
such as Trump repugnant. They seek a return to the polished mendacity
of politicians such as Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama. They hope to
promote the interests of global capitalism by maintaining the fiction
of a functioning democracy and an open society. These “moderates” or
“liberals,” however, are also the architects of the global corporate
pillage. They created the political vacuum that the demagogues and
proto-fascist movements have filled. They blind themselves to their own
complicity. They embrace their own myths—such as the belief that former
FBI Director James Comey and the Russians were responsible for the
election of Trump—to avoid examining the social inequality that is
behind the global crisis and their defeat.
put this in slightly different terms: It does not really matter whether
you support the corporate powers that support Trump or the corporate
powers that support Clinton. Both are out to swindle the
non-rich out of any real democracy and out of their money.
I agree and there is considerably more in this recommended
Struggles to Recover After Huge Breach of Spying Tools
This article is by
Scott Shane, Nicole Perlotti and David Sangernov on The New York Times.
I took it because of its title, that anounces ¨a fact¨ that I
have not read about before.
It starts as follows,
about a Mr. Jake Williams, who is claimed to work for the NSA:
Mr. Williams had written on his company blog about the
Shadow Brokers, a mysterious group that had somehow obtained many of
the hacking tools the United States used to spy on other countries. Now
the group had replied in an angry screed on Twitter. It identified him
— correctly — as a former member of the National Security Agency’s
hacking group, Tailored Access Operations, or T.A.O., a job he had not
publicly disclosed. Then the Shadow Brokers astonished him by dropping
technical details that made clear they knew about highly classified
hacking operations that he had conducted.
America’s largest and most secretive intelligence agency had
been deeply infiltrated.
“They had operational insight that even most of my fellow
operators at T.A.O. did not have,” said Mr. Williams, now with
Rendition Infosec, a cybersecurity firm he founded. “I felt like I’d
been kicked in the gut. Whoever wrote this either was a well-placed
insider or had stolen a lot of operational data.”
now? I am not saying the above may not be true. Then
again, Shane et al. do not give the slightest evidence
what they say is true: while this is also the first time I read
about this. And apparently, you just have to believe
the journalists of the NYT, presumably because they write for the NYT.
cannot believe anyone without any credible evidence.
Here is more that
comes without any evidence whatsoever:
The jolt to Mr. Williams from the Shadow Brokers’ riposte
was part of a much broader earthquake that has shaken the N.S.A. to its
core. Current and former agency officials say the Shadow Brokers
disclosures, which began in August 2016, have been catastrophic for the
N.S.A., calling into question its ability to protect potent
cyberweapons and its very value to national security. The agency
regarded as the world’s leader in breaking into adversaries’ computer
networks failed to protect its own.
been following the NSA and crisis quite narrowly since June 10, 2012; I wrote more than
1743 article on it since then; and I have not
read anything like this ever since August 2016, which is more than a
year ago, when it was claimed to have been started.
is the evidence?!
Here is more that is presented without any
Fifteen months into a wide-ranging investigation by the
agency’s counterintelligence arm, known as Q Group, and the F.B.I.,
officials still do not know whether the N.S.A. is the victim of a
brilliantly executed hack, with Russia as the most likely perpetrator,
an insider’s leak, or both.
we are supposed to believe that the N.S.A. has been hacked by the
Russians, all without the least evidence, while we are
requested to keep our full belief (again without the least
evidence) on the American spies who spy on everyone and steal
everyone´s private mails and opinions, as if the USA is a totalitarian
In response to detailed questions, an N.S.A. spokesman,
Michael T. Halbig, said the agency “cannot comment on Shadow Brokers.”
He denied that the episode had hurt morale. “N.S.A. continues to be
viewed as a great place to work; we receive more than 140,000
applications each year for our hiring program,” he said.
sorry, but I do not believe on whit of the above until it has
been supported and given real evidence by
sites that are FAR more reliable than the NYT.
With the Enemy
This article is by
Charles M. Blow on The New York Times. It starts as follows, and seems
rather similar to me to the previous item:
Consider the strategic and historical magnitude of what
“President” Donald Trump said last week: He said that he believed the
intelligence conclusions of a nation hostile to this country — Russia —
over the intelligence conclusions drawn by American agencies.
It is a striking declaration, a betrayal of American trust
and interests that is almost treasonous in its own right.
No, this is just
plain nonsense, and for a quite simple reason: There are a few
fundamental differences between spies (whether for Russia
or for the
USA) and other people:
Spies have far more power to find out things than ordinary people;
spies in the West have illegal powers to spy on everyone; no spy can be
trusted to speak the truth without independent evidence; spies are
required to lie by their superiors; and spies have many secrets they
are supposed to remain silent about.
And while I am
not saying any of this makes Russian spies more
credible than American
spies, I am saying that I cannot believe American spies on the mere
ground that they are Americans.
does seem to hold for Mr. Blow, who is an American (unlike me).
Here is more about what Mr. Blow says Mr. Blow believes:
Let’s say this again, as a clear declaration: Russia
attacked our elections. They stole emails that were published and
broadcast ad nauseam. They created and distributed propaganda on social
media designed to exacerbate our divisions, content that was seen by
nearly half the country.
We may never know precisely how all the
Russian efforts influenced our elections — which of these might have
influenced the vote of individuals or conversely turned other voters
off of the process altogether so that they just stayed home — but
saying that it had no effect defies logic and is indeed laughable.
I am sorry, but this is just exaggerated nonsense:
The first paragraph does not say that the
does precisely the same to Russia, and the first paragraph also
say that the only evidence
that Russia attacked the American elections
seems to be that some Russians (?) paid $80,000 to get some
advertisements on Facebook (which I calculated as the 100,000th part of
the turnover of Facebook in a year).
And in fact the second paragraph partially
this for it says effectively that the Americans do not know ¨how all the Russian efforts influenced our
elections¨ and indeed do
also not know how this ¨might
have influenced the vote of individuals or conversely turned other
voters off of the process altogether¨.
But none of this seems much to matter to Mr. Blow: He
knows that he is an American, and that is enough evidence for
so it seems.
Mr. Blow ends as follows:
Trump won’t acknowledge the crime because Trump was the
beneficiary of the crime. Trump won’t insult Russia because it may well
be that he was installed by Russia. Trump is as much a Russian project
as an American president.
This means that he is
compromised, in capacity and function, and that means that Trump’s fear
of dishonor places the rest of us in danger of future attacks and
exploitation. Trump is Putin’s dupe.
I dislike Trump as much (or more) than Mr. Blow does.
But since I am not an American, I lack the totalitarian
that makes me exclaim enthusiastically that the American´s unevidenced
spies´ lies must be vastbly preferable to the Russian
spies´ lies, simply because they are by Americans.
Sanders: To Reform the Party, Democrats Must Split from Corporate
This article is by
Charlie May on AlterNet and originally on Salon. This is from near the
op-ed published in Politico, Sanders began with a
strong rebuke of President Donald Trump and everything that
Trump's policies and rhetoric stand for. But that's a given to a party
at a crossroads, facing the question of what's next.
far, Sanders — who is technically an independent — and the
Democrats have been on the same page with this message. But the two
factions diverge when Sanders talks about reform from within the party.
Scan "Resistance" on Twitter, and you're apt to find thousands of
accounts who believe that Sanders hurt Clinton's
chances for victory.
is true that Sanders is not a real Democrat but an independent, for
which reason Sanders´ popularity among Democrats must be a bit painful
for the Democrats.
again, I am sorry, but this seems to me to be a fact: if you
Twitter you must be an idiot. I neither believe in Twitter, nor do
ever consult it, and I suggest that anyone who is rational should agree
with me at least in not believing ¨Twitter¨.
is more on Sanders´ ideas:
went on to argue that, despite the victories, "the longer-term trend
for the Democratic Party is worrisome."
plenty of merit to that claim, even if many don't want to believe it to
be true. Only 37 percent of Americans hold a favorable view of the
Democratic Party, a new CNN poll revealed. It's the lowest mark for the party in
more than 25 years of polling. A majority, 54 percent, said they had an
unfavorable view of the party. Note that Sen. Sanders is far more
popular than the Democratic Party at large: in an October Harvard-Harris poll, 53 percent of those polled
had a favorable opinion of Sanders. That sounds low, but he was still
the most well-liked politician by far (..)
Sanders is right, and I draw your attention to the following: ¨There's plenty of merit to that claim, even
if many don't want to believe it to be true¨, for this seems to imply that wishful
thinking now is a
totally acceptable way to arrive at conclusions (on Twitter): ¨I wish
it were not true, and therefore it isn´t true.¨
perhaps his final point is the toughest for many to finally come to
are to succeed," Sanders wrote, "we must fully appreciate [Donna]
Brazile’s revelations and
understand the need for far more transparency in the financial and
policy workings of the Democratic Party." He added, "Hundreds of
millions of dollars flow in and out of the Democratic National
Committee with little to no accountability. That simply is not
"revelations" in question referred to former interim Democratic
National Committee (DNC) chairwoman Donna Brazile, wrote last week that
the DNC had an "unethical" agreement in place that put the Clinton
campaign in charge of directing the party's funds, staffing and overall
strategy long before she had won the primary.
are others who claimed that Sanders was frauded out of his leading
position with the Democrats.
I should add that I think the Democrats are as lost as the
cans for the simple reason that in both parties most Senators and most
members of Congress seem to have been bought by the rich.
5. Patriotism, Taxes, and
This article is by Robert Reich on his site. This is from near
[T]he tax plan
gives American corporations a $2 trillion tax
break, at a time when they’re enjoying
profits and stashing unprecedented
amounts of cash in offshore tax shelters.
I totally agree
this. Here is more, that I also agree with:
And it gives America’s
wealthiest citizens trillions more, when the
richest 1 percent now hold a record 38.6
The reason Republicans give
for enacting the plan is “supply-side” trickle-down nonsense. The real
reason is payback to the GOP’s mega-donors.
of the nation’s
total wealth, up from 33.7
percent a decade ago.
The biggest likely
beneficiaries are busily investing an additional $43
million to pressure specific members of Congress to pass it, according
Wall Street Journal.
They include the
45Committee, founded by billionaire casino
oligarch Sheldon Adelson and Joe Ricketts, owner of the Chicago Cubs;
Koch Brothers’ groups, Americans for Prosperity and Freedom Partners.
They’re not doing this
out of love of America. They’re doing it
out of love of money.
And there is this:
In fact, I think it is
more serious: I think that in both parties most Senators
and most members
of Congress seem to have been bought by the rich.
As more of the nation’s
has shifted to the top over the past three decades, major recipients
have poured some
of it into politics – buying themselves tax cuts, special subsidies,
antitrust enforcement, favorable bankruptcy rules, extended
intellectual property protection, and other laws that add to their
All of which have given them
more clout to get additional legal changes that enlarge their
wealth even more.
But this is a recommended article.
have now been saying since
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.
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).
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 (!!).