from June 29, 2018
This is a
Nederlog of Friday,
This is a crisis
log but it is a bit different from how it was until 2013:
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.
2. Crisis Files
five crisis files
that are mostly well worth reading:
A. Selections from June 29, 2018:
1. Intercepted Live From Brooklyn With Sy Hersh, Mariame
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:
Gelernt, and Narcy
2. Presidential Psychopathy: Trump at the Border
3. Justice Kennedy’s Resignation Opens Door for Far-Right
& Overturning of Roe v.
4. Top Mental Health Experts Are Calling for the Goldwater
Rule to Be
5. What Must We Do Now?
Live From Brooklyn With Sy Hersh, Mariame Kaba, Lee Gelernt, and Narcy
This article is by Jeremy
Scahill on The Interpreter. It starts as follows:
Did President Lyndon
Johnson really take a shit in front of reporter Tom Wicker? This week
on Intercepted, live in Brooklyn: Legendary reporter Seymour
Hersh shares what he thinks of Donald Trump, his analysis of the
Trump-Russia story, and some wild stories from his new memoir,
“Reporter.” ACLU attorney Lee Gelernt recounts the latest on the
immigrant families that are being ripped apart and separated
indefinitely, and shares personal stories of the victims he represents
in a nationwide class-action suit against the Trump administration.
Activist Mariame Kaba explains the historical foundations of the
American carceral state and calls for the abolition of ICE and the
prison-industrial complex. Multimedia artist and rapper Yassin
Alsalman, better known by Narcy, performs an original spoken word and
premieres his new song, “Yemenade.”
Jeremy Scahill makes his
interviews with several persons each week and produces articles like
the present one. I generally like them, but they are too long to -
fairly - summarize. So this time I shall select only from the interview
Hersh, and leave the rest to your interests.
Here is a part of Scahill's introduction to Seymour Hersh:
You know, Sy Hersh
was the very first guest that we had on Intercepted when we started
just days after Donald Trump was inaugurated and gave his “American
Carnage” speech. Sy Hersh has been in the game of journalism for almost
his entire adult life. This was a man who, decades before Edward
Snowden, blew the whistle on warrantless spying, not only on people
around the world but inside the United States, exposed CIA operations
targeting the antiwar movement in this country and engaging in spying
on all forms of dissidents. Sy Hersh was one of the key journalists
that brought down the presidency of Richard Nixon.
Well... let's say Hersh is
one of the greatest journalists in the USA, and I am saying so not to
take him down, but to have some perspective.
He exposed the My Lai
massacre, he exposed the Abu Ghraib torture; Sy Hersh did incredible
groundbreaking reporting on the U.S. assassination program post-9/11,
well before many news outlets even understood what the real project of
Cheney and Rumsfeld actually consisted of. This is a man who is nothing
short of the greatest journalist of his time, and perhaps of our time.
And here is Hersh:
I more or less agree, but
I am also a psychologist, and I think he is simply mad, and is so
by behavorial criterions: He most probably has the
lies. He has a five-minute conversation and you repeat something he
said and he says, “I don’t — I didn’t do it.” I’m not diminishing
lying; lying is awful. But we had a president named Lyndon Johnson that
told us for five months that there were no troops going to go to
Vietnam and he had troops already in there and he sent more during that
time. And so I don’t know what a lie means — that to me, that’s a lie.
Trump is — he’s evil,
of course. He’s a buffoon of course. But, I hate to say it, he was
elected. So, what do you do?
So, look, when I say what I
think it means nothing because what I think is, you know, the answer is
we really don’t know what goes on in his mind. He doesn’t read much, we
know that. No, he just doesn’t. But, gee, I think a lot of people
This also explains his interminable lying and it implies he is
Then again, I think Hersh is right that "a lot of people underestimate him", but I agree that it is difficult
Here is more Hersh:
I think Hersh is right
about Yemen, but I also think he is mistaken about Trump's tweets and
Pruitt, and indeed not because much of that is important, for
it is not, but because this is the
You mentioned Yemen. We’re
talking about mass murder, particularly now there’s going to be a
blockade of a main port that could end up killing — that’s getting
reported, but the American role in it, besides supplying intelligence,
we refuel the planes that are doing the bombing missions, we supply all
sorts of intelligence support. We’re up to it up to our ass, and nobody
really gets into that.
And so I would say: You want
to go after Trump, forget about the tweets. And forget about Pruitt and
that stuff (...)
most that most ordinary people
read about Trump. And therefore it should be contradicted if it is
false, as it usually is.
Here is Hersh on whether Russia has manipulated the latest
The fact of the matter is, if Russia wanted to do, cause lot of
difficulty to the American election they could have. Instead, they went
and talked privately to us. So when the government says Russia
intercepted stuff that was very important to us, I’m being very fuzzy
about it, it wasn’t about the election. They told us that there were
certain people in America doing things that were very deleterious to
the War on Terrorism for personal and financial gain, and they could
have blown it publicly but they went internally to us.
I guess that is correct -
and indeed I never believed the Russians did a lot to upset the
American elections, and not because I believe that is
impossible, but because I have seen no evidence for it
during the last 1 1/2 years.
Here is more on the very many wars the USA is in fact conducting:
We’re in 76
countries right now conducting war, most of them in Africa. And you
know nothing about it. And if you believe what the Joint Chiefs, the
Joint — the Special Operations Command, the Joint Special
Operations Command tells you about what happened in Mali, I’m not going
to sell you whatever the cliché is, they’re completely out of control.
They’re just there. They do their thing and they’re just causing havoc,
particularly in Africa and also in the Middle East.
I quite agree.
Here is the
last bit that I quote from this fine article:
And I think this is completely
correct. There is a lot more about Hersh in this article, besides other
interesting interviews, and it is strongly recommended.
is what he wrote. “Reporter” demonstrates that Hersh has derived three
simple lessons from his rule — rule about reporting: “The powerful
prey mercilessly upon the powerless, up to and including mass murder.
2. The powerful lie constantly about their predations. 3. The natural
instinct of the media is to let the powerful get away with it.”
we know that. I mean, you guys all know that. That’s why The Intercept
lives, right? You guys are practicing journalism in sort of the purest
sense, which doesn’t always translate into widespread acceptance,
particularly by your peers, right?
Psychopathy: Trump at the Border
This article is by Kathleen
Barry on Common Dreams. It has a subtitle:
As there is no cure
for psychopathy, in a civilized country all that is left is removing
the psychopath from office.
Well... I am a
psychologist and Kathleen Barry is not: She is a sociologist
and an educationalist.
And I do not - even - know whether she knows that
has been deleted from the DSM-5, and seems to have been mostly replaced
There is a considerable difference between the two, in that psychopathy
requires some mental disorder, whereas sociopathy
simply means that one does not agree with the norms of the majority,
which in turn means that psychiatry,
which at present as over 450 different ways
people to have some form of
"disordered mind" and to prescribe or even enforce psychiatric
medicines on people thus described, while the psychiatrists until
the 1980ies had around 50 such different ways, which
my mind - again implies that psychiatry is
not a real science at all,
but is simply officialese to keep up the current norms. (And
incidentally, my ex - also a psychologist - and myself have been
described as "psychosomatizers" - which is not even medicine, but
simply metaphysical bullshit -
for nearly 40 years because we have the
"serious chronic disease ME/CFS" for nearly 40 years.)
And in any case, while I do believe in psychopathy (and dislike
reject the psychiatric diagnosis of sociopathy, which is much like the
Soviet Union regarded and medically abused dissidents: "You don't have
our norms, ergo you are insane") I am a psychologist who says that the
most probable diagnosis of Trump is not that he is a
psychopath, but that he is
Here is Barry's description of Trump:
A broad range of
Americans deplore the cruel and inhumane treatment of immigrants,
especially the separation of them from their children ordered by Donald
Trump. But we see him responding with macho bullying and grandiose
threats riddled with his unbridled racism against people he wants to
keep out of his country. His cold, highly aggressive behaviors evidence
the essential characteristics of psychopaths whose disregard for the
welfare of others comes from an absence of both empathy and remorse,
the foundations of conscience that make us human. In place of being
empathetic with the migrant families, he pushes the harm deeper and
feels no remorse for the trauma his actions cause the children.
Instead, he is the winner with the power to harm others to be able to
punish others to make them the losers.
I will not spend
agreeing or disagreeing with this, but I do like to know on
grounds Barry decided that Trump is a psychopath (which is no longer
valid psychiatry-as-judged-by- the-DSM-5):
little or nothing to gain from telling the truth, and more likely most
of the time, he does not even take the problem of his facts vs lies in
his statements into consideration. All of his self-made drama is about
him, not about the country he governs. If harm comes to others because
of his policy or behavior, what matters to him is his power to create
it and even if he changes policy, it is about him and his power to stop
the wrongs he created. That fits with how Trump is alienating allies of
the United States while he cozies up to a brutal dictator with whom he
can identify. It seems that he could care less that the US is losing
allies and respect around the globe as long as his actions serve his
ego and keep him at center-stage globally.
Possibly so, but speaking
as a psychologist, this sounds more like narcissism. And here is
Barry''s certainty as to why she thinks Trump is a psychopath:
How am I so sure
about Trump's psychopathy when I have never met him? Besides the
fact that he daily demonstrates to us psychopathy in action, as a
sociologist, in my latest book, Unmaking War (2011),
I examined psychopathy in the US Presidency showing how the office has
degenerated to the extent that it lends itself to engaging in those
It seems to me she
believes it because she believes it, and not because she knows
about psychology or psychiatry. I don't think you need to read
Kennedy’s Resignation Opens Door for Far-Right Supreme Court &
Overturning of Roe v. Wade
This article is by
Amy Goodman on Democracy Now! It starts with the following introduction:
In a move that could
transform the Supreme Court for decades, Justice Anthony Kennedy has
announced his retirement, giving President Trump a chance to pick a
second conservative on the high court. Kennedy, who was nominated by
President Reagan, was widely seen as the swing vote on the nine-justice
court. On Wednesday, he sided with the conservative wing of the court
to deal a major blow to public-sector unions in the case of Janus v. AFSCME. He also sided this week with the majority
upholding President Trump’s Muslim travel ban. But Kennedy has sided
with the liberal wing of the court on a number of pivotal issues. He
has been instrumental in preventing Roe v. Wade from being overturned,
and he has supported same-sex marriage, affirmative action and criminal
justice reform. On Wednesday, President Trump said he wants to pick a
justice who will be on the court for the next 40 or 45 years. We speak
to Dahlia Lithwick, senior editor at Slate.com.
Yes indeed - and this is just
one of many articles about this fact. Here is Dahlia Lithwick:
LITHWICK: (..) I see it as
giving up, because I was one of an enormous number of people who
believed that Anthony Kennedy had certain foundational principles that
would make him hesitant to step down when Donald Trump was likely to
appoint his successor. For one thing, as you said, he was the bulwark
in so many 5-4 cases—reproductive rights, LGBTQ
rights, prisoner rights, affirmative action. In so many areas, he was
the fifth vote that would have precluded a sea change from overtaking
the country. And the idea that his legacy wouldn’t matter in
considering whether he’d step down, I just didn’t see it happening. I
thought he would stay on because his legacy was that important.
Which - I take it - means she
believed Kennedy had stronger moral fibres than he seems to have. Then
again, since I do not know Kennedy at all, and he is 81, I do not
Here is the other bit I'll
quote from this article:
Possibly so, but I don't know.
Then again, I have strong doubts about the Supreme Court of the United
States for several reasons, and one is the fact that its judges are
nominated for life.
LITHWICK: (..) I mean, I
think that there is—has been a question that has animated Republican
politics since the '70s, since Roe, that has really
laser-focused on the idea that Roe was the original sin in
judicial politics. And you'll remember that Sandra Day O’Connor’s
confirmation hearing, Anthony Kennedy’s confirmation hearing, Ruth
Bader Ginsburg’s hearing, the issue that matters most to conservative
movement Republicans has been doing away with Roe. And that
was again—we had never had, until this election in 2016, a president
who said, “I am promising you a litmus test. The litmus test is that Roe
will be gone."
Mental Health Experts Are Calling for the Goldwater Rule to Be Revised
article is by Chris Sosa on AlterNet. It starts as follows:
The American Psychiatric
Association is facing
calls from top mental health professionals to revise the infamous
Goldwater rule that effectively bars discussion of political
candidates' mental health.
signatories to the official letter include Robert Jay Lifton,
a leading global expert on the psychological effects of war and
political violence and Philip Zimbardo of the Stanford prison
Signers say withholding
their professional views in political settings is a breach of
ethics and believe President Donald Trump showed clear signs of
dangerous psychological patterns.
I agree with the
signers, although I very probably disagree with them on the status
psychiatry (which I did not study) and psychology (which I have an
in): I think psychiatry
is a total pseudoscience,
while much of
psychology also is. Also, while I am not against them as such,
because people with serious problems need help, I think that anyone
knows something about philosophy of science and physics or chemistry
should come to similar conclusions as I have.
Then again, I know my
conclusions are not common. Here is some more by the signers:
“If you understand
character and the typical psychological needs of someone reacting to
threats to his self-esteem, you know that that behavior and speech
doesn’t change readily,” Dr. Leonard Glass of Harvard Medical
The letter to the APA says
the Goldwater rule is "antiquated, illogical, without scientific
foundation, and intrinsically undermining of mental health
professionals’ efforts to protect the public’s well-being.”
Signers believe that a
prohibition on discussing individuals they've treated and non-public
figures should remain, but that the Goldwater rule must be revised to
recognize the ethical duty to warn about dangerous public figures.
I agree with them, but then I
do and did so from 1980 onwards, and for me the APA is
simply a private
and mostly secret gathering of persons trying to get rich with what is
mostly, from a scientific point of view, bullshit.
5. What Must We Do Now?
is by Robert Reich on his site. It starts as follows:
I shall take this as
mostly correct, although 27 percent of Americans are about 75 million
My friends, this is a dark
hour. Intolerance, cruelty, racism, misogyny, xenophobia, and
environmental destruction have been let loose across the land.
Trump controls the
Republican Party, the Republican Party controls the House and Senate,
and the Senate and Trump will soon control the Supreme Court.
Republicans also control
both chambers in 32 states (33 if you count Nebraska) and 33
governorships. And in many of these states they are entrenching their
power by gerrymandering and arranging to suppress votes.
Yet only 27 percent of
Americans are Republican, and the vast majority of Americans disapprove
Here is what Reich wants you - then non-Republican majority - to do -
and I have deleted the texts, and only copied the bold parts: If you
want to read the texts, go to the original:
I think all of this is
correct, and this is a recommended article.
So what are we – the
majority – to do?
First and most
importantly, do not give up. (...)
Second, in the short
term, if you are represented by a Republican senator, do whatever you
can to get him or her to reject Trump’s Supreme Court nominee
Third, make a ruckus.
Fourth, don’t succumb to
divisive incrimination over “who lost” the 2016 election (...)
Fifth, vote this
November 6 for people who will stand up to the Trump Republican outrage.
Sixth, help lay the
groundwork for the 2020 presidential election (...)
Finally, know that this
fight will be long and hard. (...)
 I have
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 (!!).