from March 10, 2018.
This is a
Nederlog of Saturday,
This is a crisis
log but it is a bit different from how it was the last five years:
I have been writing about the crisis since September 1, 2008 (in Dutch, but
since 2010 in English) 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 more than two years
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
I shall continue.
Section 2. Crisis Files
are five crisis files that are all well worth reading:
Selections from March 10, 2018
are five crisis files that are all well worth reading:
1. Meet Some of the Women Overlooked by The New York Times
2. South Korea Announces Trump Will Meet with North Korea’s
Democrats Should Steal Trump's Thunder on Trade
Illusion of War Without Casualties
5. Wall Street Deregulation Is All About the Money
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:
Some of the Women Overlooked by The New York Times Obituaries Section
This article is by Amy Goodman on Democracy Now! It starts with the
As the world marked
International Women’s Day on Wednesday, The New York Times began a new
project highlighting the lives of remarkable women who never had an
obituary in the paper, until now. The list might surprise you. It
includes the pioneering anti-lynching journalist Ida B. Wells; the
writer and poet Sylvia Plath; Qiu Jin, who was known as China’s Joan of
Arc; the groundbreaking photographer Diane Arbus; the woman who helped
engineer the Brooklyn Bridge, Emily Warren Roebling; Charlotte Brontë,
who wrote “Jane Eyre”; Henrietta Lacks, whose cells led to a medical
revolution; and Ada Lovelace, who is considered to be the world’s first
computer programmer. The New York Times is calling the project
“Overlooked,” and it is part of an effort to make up for the paper’s
167-year history of focusing largely on men—mostly white men—in the
obituary pages. For more, watch our full interview with Amy Padnani,
digital editor of obituaries at The New York Times, who came up with
the idea of “Overlooked.”
In fact, I
picked this article mostly because of Henrietta Lacks,
whom I know of thanks to Adam Curtis´s "Modern Times: The
way of all flesh", that I
saw in the beginning of 2013, and
that impressed me, in part because I thought her name should have been
known much better than it is, while it seemed (and seems) to me
that an important part of the reasons for the massive ignorance
about her has a lot to do with the fact that she was black.
I also admit that usually I do not pay much attention to March 8, which
I do not because I am not a ¨feminist¨ in the style that term
has been given since the early 1970ies: I think it was a major
mistake from ¨the feminists¨ to get all women working. This
meant in effect that not only most men are wage-slaves,
but now also most women, and it also meant in effect that to
raise ¨a family¨ decently both parents now have to work (unless
one of the two effectively made a larger income than the large
Then again, I am a feminist in the sense that I am for equal
rights for women, but not if these equal rights imply a setback
in status or opportunities, as has been the case since the early
1970ies: ¨Feminism-of-the-1970ies¨ simply implied that the rich now
have twice as many wage-slaves.
I know, it is too late...
Here is more about the considerable differences in the obituaries that
are published in the American papers:
GOODMAN: What percentage
of people in the obituaries are still white men?
PADNANI: About four out of
five obits are on white men—are on men.
GOODMAN: What are they?
PADNANI: Sorry, on men. I
don’t have the figures for people of color. So, yeah, about 80 percent
of our obituaries are about men.
I take it that is quite
true. Incidentally, while this concerns the proportions male : female
and leaves out race, it seems obvious to me that most of the published
obituaries of men are of white men (which itself is more or less
justified in the USA, because there are more whites than blacks there).
And this is the last
bit I quote from this article, and it is about Henrietta Lacks:
GOODMAN: Now, people may
have learned about Henrietta Lacks, who weren’t Henrietta Lacks’s
family, through the remarkable book that I think is still on the
best-seller list, by Rebecca Skloot, The Immortal Life of
Henrietta Lacks. Talk about who this remarkable woman was and the
role she played, and continues to play, in medical research today.
PADNANI: She was a poor,
uneducated black woman whose cells were used for medical research
unknowingly. And it has led to treatments for cancer, treatments for
really common illnesses today. She had these regenerative cells that
were unique, and they aided in these medical discoveries that have been
benefiting people for decades. So, it’s pretty amazing that she never
got the recognition for it.
Yes indeed - and to the
best of my knowledge the descendants of her cells are still
being used in very many experiments - while she died from
cancer in 1951, aged 31 - because ¨[s]he had these regenerative cells that were
There is considerably
more in this article, that is recommended.
Korea Announces Trump Will Meet with North Korea’s Kim Jong-un
This article is by Amy Goodman on Democracy Now! It starts
with the following introduction:
The White House says
President Trump has accepted an invitation to meet directly with North
Korea’s leader, Kim Jong-un. South Korea’s National Security Adviser
Chung Eui-yong spoke with reporters Thursday night outside the White
House after briefing officials on the recent talks between Seoul and
Pyongyang, and said the meeting would take place within two months. No
sitting U.S. president has ever met with a North Korean leader; Kim
Jong-un has never met another sitting head of state. For more, we speak
with Tim Shorrock, correspondent for The Nation and the Korea Center
for Investigative Journalism in Seoul.
In fact, I wrote yesterday about Korea, but the present
article gives some information that was missing yesterday:
GOODMAN: The White House
says President Trump has accepted an invitation to meet directly with
North Korea’s leader Kim Jong-un. This is South Korea’s National
Security Adviser Chung Eui-yong speaking to reporters Thursday night,
in the dark, outside the White House, near the portico, after briefing
officials on the recent talks between Seoul and Pyongyang.
I expressed President Moon Jae-in’s personal gratitude for President
Trump’s leadership. I told President Trump that in our meeting, North
Korean leader Kim Jong-un said he is committed to denuclearization. Kim
pledged that North Korea will refrain from any further nuclear or
missile tests. He understands that routine joint military exercises
between the Republic of Korea and the United States must continue. And
he expressed his eagerness to meet President Trump as soon as possible.
President Trump appreciated the briefing and said he would meet Kim
Jong-un, by May, to achieve permanent denuclearization.
GOODMAN: The South Korean
official went on to say the meeting would take place within two months.
No sitting U.S. president has ever met with a North Korean leader; Kim
Jong-un has never met another head of state from anywhere in the world.
I think all of this is
quite correct, and it also seems to be the case that much of this
development is due to South-Korea´s current president Moon.
There is also this,
from journalist Tim Shorrock, who specializes on Korea:
Tim, welcome back to Democracy
Now! What did you think when you heard this announcement last
SHORROCK: Thank you. I
was, frankly, elated. And I was kind of expecting this. And I’m going
to take a moment here of personal privilege to say I’ve been on this
show for 10 years talking about the need for the United States to talk
directly to North Korea to resolve this crisis and bring an end to the
Korean War. And I feel very vindicated today that this has
happened—against the wishes of the media, the think tanks here, who
have been down on this idea and who have criticized it and are still
criticizing it as we speak. They cannot deal with the fact that the two
Koreas have come to an agreement to reach a peace accord in the Koreas
and end this state of war between the United States and North Korea.
I think this may well
be correct, and I think he is quite right about the fact that ¨the two Koreas have come to an agreement to
reach a peace accord in the Koreas and end this state of war between
the United States and North Korea¨ - that is, it is mainly the Koreans who did
There is considerably
more in this article, that is recommended.
Should Steal Trump's Thunder on Trade
This article is by Thom Hartmann on AlterNet. It starts as
There’s an old
saying that even a broken clock is right twice a day. In that spirit,
Donald Trump and his advisors are at least partly right about trade and
totally defying the entire Republican Party, as well as the Bill
Clinton-corporate wing of the Democratic Party, and running with
policies that progressive Democrats have been pushing for a century.
progressive politicians will admit Trump is right on trade (and several
have on my radio/TV show), there aren’t a lot of Democrats these days
willing to enthusiastically acknowledge Trump might be right about
anything so they’re not much popping up on network or cable TV.
unfortunate: the Democratic Party should return to its progressive/
protectionist/union roots and steal this issue right from Trump’s
teeth, saying that he’s not doing it well enough or fast enough. They
should run hard in 2020 on Bernie’s suggestion that we use
protectionist policies to end our trade deficits and bring back home
trade deficits we’ve been running since the Reagan era are damaging to
the future of America for a variety of reasons, from national security
to where the profits from American companies end up, to the flattening
of American working wages and benefits.
agree on the first and the last paragraphs of the above quotation,
while I think the sort of program indicated in the middle seems quite
improbable, indeed because of the fact that ¨The disastrous trade deficits¨ the USA ¨has
been running since the Reagan era¨ and also - I think - because of the fact that
most Democratic Senators and Congressmen have been bought by
the rich or the bankers already quite long ago.
Here is some
of the economical background, indeed since Reagan:
Where do foreign
countries and companies and oligarchs get all these dollars to buy US
goods? By and large, we gave them to them, in the form of $600 billion
a year or so trade deficits that go back to the Reagan era that kicked
off modern neoliberalism.
When we buy more
from, for example, China
Arabia, than they sell to us, we end up with a surplus of their
consumer goods (which eventually end up in our landfills) or oil, while
they end up with a surplus of US dollars (which they use to buy our
companies, real estate, and increasingly since it was legalized by the
Supreme Court in Citizens United, our politicians).
This was not how
the Founders intended it.
rejected traditional American trade policies in the 1980s under Reagan,
and then most Democrats rejected them with the rise of the DLC and Bill
Clinton in 1992, and in both cases they turned their backs on over 200
years of American policy that turned us into the industrial powerhouse
of the world.
I think I
basically agree with this, and I should also tell you that (i) I am a bit
surprised that I more or less like Thom Hartmann (and I am a bit
surprised because he it a talk-show host), while (ii) this is a pretty
long article of which I only review some bits, and leave most
to your interests.
Here is more,
on joblessness in the USA and on Keynes (and also on Reagan´s and Bill
Clinton´s changes to how the American economy was run, and what for):
things, the article reported that more than 6.3 million Americans had
been jobless for more than six months, the largest number since
government started tracking joblessness in 1948, and more than 15
million Americans were jobless in January 2010.
What happened to
Keynes? How could hundreds of billions of dollars pumped into the
economy fail to create jobs making things that working people could
buy? If it worked so well in the 1930s and 1940s, why did it fail to go
beyond just “stopping the bleeding” and move into the net creation of
new manufacturing jobs in the US in the 2010s?
In fact, it
hadn’t failed. It did create millions of jobs – probably tens
of millions of jobs. The problem is that they were mostly in China.
The simple fact
is that we no longer make computers or TVs or clothes or power tools or
toys or pretty much anything in the USA, except military hardware,
guns, processed food and frakked gas. So when we “stimulate” our
economy by putting money into the pockets of working people, they go to
Walmart and buy things made in Asia – creating jobs in that part of the
this also seems quite correct to me - and the changes to Keynes´
policies are in fact due to the fact (I think) that both
Reagan and Clinton permitted American corporations to make the
biggest profits also if these were realized outside of the USA.
And then one
has to consider these facts:
During the 1930s,
none of the “Asian powerhouse economies” had adopted American
industrialization strategies, so when Roosevelt “stimulated the
American economy by putting money into worker’s pockets and they bought
toys or clothes or radios, all of those items were made in Alabama or
Connecticut or Michigan.
Now they’re made
in China, which experienced a "labor
shortage" in 2009 causing its average wage to increase to
$1.14 an hour from 80 cents, and its economy to grow by over 8 percent.
And $1.14 is
still a little bit more than 1/7th of the minimal wage in the USA,
which means that most of the difference goes to the few rich men who
created this whole schema, indeed with the purpose of getting a
richer a lot faster.
Here is the
last bit that I quote from this article:
policies, we’ve become the world’s largest exporter of raw materials,
the world’s largest importer of finished goods, and the world’s largest
We now export raw
materials to China, and buy from them manufactured goods. And we borrow
from them to do it. This, by the way, is the virtual definition of a
Yes indeed: I
agree. Also, there is a lot more in the article than has been
reproduced here, notably about historical developments in the USA and
Hamilton, and this is a recommended article.
Illusion of War Without Casualties
This article is by Nicolas Davies on Consortiumnews. I am only
selecting four bits from this article, and leave a lot
unmentioned. Here is the first bit:
In the past 16 years, the
U.S. has invaded, occupied and dropped 200,000
bombs and missiles on seven countries, but it has lost only 6,939 American troops killed and
50,000 wounded in these wars. To put this in the context of U.S.
military history, 58,000 U.S. troops were killed in Vietnam, 54,000 in
Korea, 405,000 in the Second World War and 116,000 in the First World
But low U.S. casualties do
not mean that our current wars are less violent than previous wars.
Our post-2001 wars have probably killed between
5 million people. The use of massive aerial and
artillery bombardment has reduced cities like Fallujah, Ramadi,
Sirte, Kobane, Mosul and Raqqa to rubble, and our wars
have plunged entire societies into endless violence and chaos.
But by bombing and firing
from a distance with very powerful weapons, the U.S. has wreaked
all this slaughter and destruction at an extraordinary low rate
of U.S. casualties. The U.S.’s technological
war-making has not reduced the violence and horror of war, but it
has “externalized” it, at least temporarily.
Yes indeed: All of this seems
quite true, and indeed the main reasons are the numbers
provided in the quotation.
Then there is this bit, which
in fact only consists of questions:
I leave these for your
consideration. Here is a bit on the great violence that is used in
How would the American
public react if far greater numbers of Americans were killed in
Korea or Iran – or Venezuela? Or even in Syria if the
U.S. and its allies follow through on their plan to
illegally occupy Syria east of the Euphrates?
And where are our political
leaders and jingoistic media leading us with their ever-escalating
anti-Russian and anti-Chinese propaganda? How far will they take
brinksmanship? Would American politicians even know before it
was too late if they crossed a point of no return in their dismantling
of Cold War nuclear treaties and escalating tensions with Russia and
How many Americans know
that the bombing campaign Obama launched in Iraq and Syria in 2014 has
been the heaviest U.S. bombing campaign anywhere in the world
since Vietnam? Over
105,000 bombs and missiles, as well as indiscriminate U.S.,
French and Iraqi rockets and artillery, have blasted
thousands of homes in Mosul, Raqqa, Fallujah, Ramadi and dozens of
smaller towns and villages. As well as killing thousands of
Islamic State fighters, they have probably killed at
least 100,000 civilians, a systematic war crime that has passed
almost without comment in the Western media.
Yes indeed. And this is the
ending of this article:
leaders know nothing of diplomacy beyond bullying and
brinksmanship. As they brainwash themselves and the public with
the illusion of war without casualties, they will keep
killing, destroying and risking our future until we stop them – or
until they stop us and everything else.
The critical question
today is whether the American public can muster the political will
to pull our country back from the brink of an even greater military
disaster than the ones we have already unleashed on millions of our
Well... as to the first
of the last quoted paragraphs: I believe it is more a matter of prejudice
than of delusion,
and the prejudice that the present American
leaders have seems a rational one if one abstracts from all
morals and from all humanity: they do what they do, and
they further, because
it is profitable to the rich and their
And my own
answer to the second paragraph is based on the American history since
Reagan became president: Very probably not
(very unfortunate as this is). And this is a recommended article, with
more than was mentioned in the present review.
Street Deregulation Is All About the Money
This article is by John Atcheson on Common Dreams. It starts
The United States is
no longer a Democracy, it's
Well... I would put it differently,
at least as far as the stresses are concerned: The Democrats
have been in majority corrupted by the
rich and by the banks ever since Bill Clinton was president, and this
still the case, and is also worse than in Clinton´s days.
Oh, that’s not the way the
Party would portray it, but with the Democratic Congressional
Campaign Committee undermining
progressive candidates, telling candidates to offer thoughts
and prayers but avoid talking about gun control in the wake of the
shootings at Stoneman Douglas high school, and seventeen
Democrats supporting a bill to deregulate the banks while the
Party’s leaders do nothing to mount a fillibuster against this latest
giveawy to the ultra-rich, there can little doubt about the Party
being in thrall to the oligarchy, and out of step with the voters.
Here is more by Atcheson:
The fact that a
little over 27 percent of the eligible voters put Trump in office is
directly a result of the fact that the Democratic Party isn’t
democratic. How? Well, if you read Clinton’s latest book, or the
misguided ramblings of neoliberals like Doug
Schoen, or look at the latest antics of the DCCC, the neoliberal
mafia that administers the orders of the Democratic Party leadership
still seems to have no clue that they enabled his victory by refusing
to stand for the vast majority of Americans who are—and have been for
some time now—getting screwed by the party’s decades long allegiance to
the uber wealthy and elitist interests in lieu of the people’s
interests. The party’s cynical centrist-one-day, faux-left the
next, center-right the next, while pandering to economic elites and
corporate America has shrunk the base of the Party from 50 percent of
Americans back in the late sixties to less than 30 percent today.
And again, while I seem to
be in some basic agreements with Atcheson, I would put it otherwise.
For just one thing: Of course ¨the Democratic Party leadership¨ knows very well how they got
rich. They got rich because they screwed their voters for money,
that in the case of this leadership seems to have come especially from
the rich banks (in such thoroughly sick utter comedies as paying both
of the Clintons many times 250,000 dollars for speeches of three
quarters of an hour to very rich bankers).
Then there is this:
amoral approach to governance is why just 37
percent believe the Democratic Party stands for something.
And what the neoliberals just don’t get, is that what Americans want
are candidates who back a progressive agenda. Oh, yes, the terms
liberal and progressive have been smeared by the Oligarch’s skillful
use of branding to make them unpopular terms, but on an issue-by-issue
basis, Americans are overwhelmingly
progressive. The only reason the Oligarch’s branding effort
worked is because no one countered it.
Once again, while I seem
to be in some basic agreements with Atcheson, I would put it otherwise.
Specifically, I think ¨the neoliberals¨ find it very easy yo
get that ¨what Americans
want are candidates who back a progressive agenda¨, but they also know that most Americans
aren´t rich, while the few rich are willing to pay a lot of
money to the less than 1000 members of Congress. (And money comes
Here is Atcheson´s ending:
the Russians—when it comes to messing with our political system,
they’re pikers compared to the Oligarchy.
I quite agree. And this is
a recommended article.
have now been
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.
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 2 years
as if they are the
eagerly willing instruments of the US's secret services, which I
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 (!!).