from November 25, 2018
This is a
Nederlog of Sunday,
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 November 25, 2018:
1. Noam Chomsky: The Future of Organized Human Life Is At Risk
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:
2. On the philosophers of selfishness
3. Here are 10 incredibly fake facts Trump supporters think
4. Will Democrats Back a 'Green New Deal'?
5. The Rehabilitation of Robert Mueller
Chomsky: The Future of Organized Human Life Is At Risk
This article is by
Amy Goodman on Democracy Now! I abbreviated the title, and in fact this
is one of the five interviews with Chomsky that are reported on
Democracy Now! that I mentioned the day
It starts with the following introduction:
As the death toll
from the climate change-fueled Camp Fire in California continues to
rise and hundreds remain missing, we rebroadcast our conversation about
climate change with world-renowned political dissident, linguist and
author Noam Chomsky from October. He says Republican Party leaders are
dedicated to “enriching themselves and their friends” at the cost of
the planet, and warns: “We have to make decisions now which will
literally determine whether organized human life can survive in any
Yes, I think Chomsky is
mostly right. In fact, I do not know all his reasons, but my own view
is - and this agrees with Chomsky - that both the dangers
of a nuclear war and the dangers of the environment (aka
the climate) are sufficiently large to maintain it is at best 50/50
that there still will be a humankind in 2118.
And besides, if there is to be one, then there must be no
nuclear war for another 100 years, while massive changes in
environmental policies are required, that also must happen soon.
Here is more:
CHOMSKY: A couple of weeks
ago, the IPCC, the international group of
scientists monitoring climate change, came out with a very ominous
report warning that the world has maybe a decade or two to basically
end its reliance on fossil fuels if we’re to have any hope of
controlling global warming below the level of utter disaster. And that,
incidentally, is a conservative estimate. It’s a consensus view. There
are—repeatedly, over the years, it has been shown that the IPCC analyses are much less alarmist than they
Now comes this report in Nature
that you mentioned, a couple of days ago, which shows that there has
been a serious underestimate of the warming of the oceans. And they
conclude that if these results hold up, the so-called carbon budget,
the amount of carbon that we can spew into the atmosphere and still
have a survival environment, has to be reduced by about 25 percent.
That’s over and above the IPCC report. And
the opening up of the Amazon to further exploitation will be another
serious blow at the prospects of survival of organized human society.
All of this is quite
correct. Here is more:
The Trump department
of highway standards, whatever it’s called, just issued a long report,
hundred-page report, urging that all regulations on automotive
emissions should be ended. And they had a very logical argument. They
said if we extrapolate current trends by the end of the century, the
climate will have warmed several degrees centigrade, meaning a huge
rise in sea level, which they underestimate. So, basically, we’re going
over the cliff anyway, and automotive emissions really don’t add much
to this, so there’s no point cutting them back. The assumption of the
department is that everyone in the world is as criminally insane as we
are, and isn’t going to do anything about it. And since—on that
assumption, yeah, let’s just rob while the planet burns, putting Nero
into the shade—he only fiddled while Rome burned. I can’t think of
anything like this in human history. You just can’t find words to
I more or less agree, but
this is the first time that I read that there now is a Trumpian
urging that all
regulations on automotive emissions should be ended".
And I agree this sounds very crazy.
Then again, I think I may disagree with Chomsky on Trump,
probably indeed not by much: I think Trump's "calculation" is basically
this: "While very many may die, very rich men like myself will
survive, and thrive as before".
I do not think that assumption is correct, but then again Trump
ignoramus, and besides he
is insane (say I, as a psychologist).
Here is the last bit that I quote from this article:
We have to make
decisions now which will literally determine whether organized human
life can survive in any decent form. You can just imagine what the
world would be like if the sea level rises, say, 10 or 20 feet or even
higher, which is within the range—easily within the range of
predictions. I mean, the consequences are unimaginable. But it’s as if
we’re kind of like the proverbial lemmings just happily marching off
the cliff, led by leaders who understand very well what they’re doing,
but are so dedicated to enriching themselves and their friends in the
near future that it simply doesn’t matter what happens to the human
species. There’s nothing like this in all of human history. There have
been plenty of monsters in the past, plenty of them. But you can’t find
one who was dedicated, with passion, to destroying the prospects for
organized human life. Hitler was horrible enough, but not that.
And I think Chomsky may
well be correct here as well. Incidentally, I live in Amsterdam,
Holland, that is 2 meters (more than 2 yards) below the present
sea-level. And I do think that if the sea rises 10 feet (more than 3
meters), it is very likely Amsterdam will disappear in the
This is a strongly recommended article.
the philosophers of selfishness
is by Amanda Marcotte on AlterNet. I abbreviated the title. This is
from near its beginning:
In the food service
industry, “Christian” is synonymous with “selfish.”
Probably. Big groups, regardless of affiliation, tend to tip poorly.
More to the point, waiters probably remember the bad Christian tippers
more because the hypocrisy is so stunning. The image of a man piously
preening about what a good Christian he is in church only to turn
around and refuse the basic act of decency that is paying someone what
you owe them perfectly symbolizes a lurking suspicion in American
culture that the harder someone thumps the Bible, the more selfish and
downright sadistic a person he is. And that perception—that showy piety
generally goes hand in hand with very un-Christ-like behavior—is not an
urban myth at all. On the contrary, it’s the daily reality of American
culture and politics.
Yes, I think the above
is probably correct - and see here
for more. Here is more from the article:
It’s absolutely disgusting
how the politicians who make the biggest show of how much they love
Jesus would be the first in line to bash him if he returned with a
message of clothing the naked and feeding the poor. The Jesus of the
Bible multiplied the loaves and fishes. His loudest followers these day
gripe about feeding people, claiming it creates a “culture of
dependency.” They may even comb through the Bible to take quotes out of
context to justify their selfishness toward the poor, as Rep. Steven Fincher did when he claimed the Bible
says, “The one who is unwilling to work shall not eat.”
Yes indeed. Here is
In reality, the
relationship between Christian piety and support for selfish policies
is fairly straightforward. It’s not that being Christian makes you
conservative. It’s that being conservative makes being a loud and pious
Christian extremely attractive. Without Christianity, the underlying
mean-spiritedness of conservative policies is simply easier to spot.
Yes, I think that is
correct, although the above is especially correct about the
I think this is also true.
Here is the last bit that I quote from this article:
The fact that conservatism
causes obnoxious Christian piety in American culture is most obvious
when looking at some of the theological developments that have accrued
since the philosophers of selfishness decided to use Christianity as
their cover story. The “prosperity gospel” that has developed in recent
years is a classic example.
The prosperity gospel teaches,
to be blunt, that you can tell how much God favors you by
how rich you are.
only thing religion has left to justify itself is that it provides
cover for people who want to have bigoted, selfish beliefs but want to
believe they are good people anyway. As these social trends continue,
we can expect the alignment between public piety and grotesquely
selfish political beliefs to get worse, not better.
Well, yes - but I think
the steps for most - American - Christians (or "Christians") are these:
Christians do have bigoted and selfisch believes (which are
taught by their religious leaders); second, most Christians are
and quite ignorant
- and will strongly tend to deny that they
are bigoted and selfish, though they are; and third, combining the two
previous points, they experience themselves as good people.
Also, I do have one bit
of criticism: I do not think the above has much to do with
Anyway... this is a recommended article.
are 10 incredibly fake facts Trump supporters think are true
is by Michael Hayne on AlterNet. It starts as follows:
I think the above bit is
partially correct, but I also
believe that there are more than two distinct supposed worlds
in the present USA.
Americans, divided and
polarized as they are, live in two distinct worlds. In one world, the
earth is not flat, climate change is real and Bill and Hillary aren't
pimping kids out in the basement of a pizza restaurant.
The other world is devoid
of reason, evidence and pretty much any type of historical facts.
Despite the fact that Trump voters have been fleeced by the biggest con
man in the world, they continue to devour the lies he sells on a silver
Here are 10 incredibly fake
facts that Trump supporters believe are true.
I set this apart because I
will quote all ten facts, but I will suppress most of the
texts. The suppressions are indicated by "(...)"s and if you want to
read the texts, you have to go to the original article:
These are the first five "fake
facts" that most Trumpian voters - somehow - believe. As I said, I
suppressed most of the associated texts, but the above list seems
1. Trump is a
devoted Christian. (...)
economy is improving because of Trump. (...)
3. 'Millions voted
illegally' (without a single shred of proof). (...)
Ignorance is bliss, right?
4. Immigration is
off the rails and illegal immigrants are all violent criminals.
But facts are not how you
Make America Great Again!
5. Trump should
have the power to overturn judicial rulings. (...)
Here is more:
6. Trumpcare is
great while Obamacare is awful.
Okay, this one is
especially heinous. During Trump's presidential campaign, he talked
constantly about how easy it would be to gut Obamacare and impose a
version of his own that would cover everyone. Here are the facts:
- Around 24 million people
will lose their health insurance—many of them his most vocal supporters
- Premiums, especially for
Americans 50 and older, will increase dramatically.
- States can opt-out of
protecting people with pre-existing conditions.
- Coverage will get worse.
- Medicaid will be gutted.
Trumpcare is stealing from
the poor to give to the rich, but his supporters don't mind being
screwed by their dear leader.
I kept the text here, simply
because it is quite correct and deserves to be more widely known.
Here are the last four "fake
facts" most Trumpian followers believe in:
Yes indeed - and I kept the text
for the last "fake fact", again because it is true, deserves to be more
widely known, and besides supports my own thesis (as do all of
"fake facts") that anyone who believes these "fake facts" are real
facts must be quite stupid or quite
and probably both. And
this is a recommended article.
7. Barack Obama was
not born in the United States. (...)
8. There's a
war on gun owners. (...)
9. All the
investigations into Trump's ties to Russia are bogus. (...)
10. Trump is honest
This may be the greatest
fake fact of fake facts: Trump is honest and trustworthy. Despite the
fact that nearly everything that comes out of his mouth is a brazen lie
that can be disproved in a New York minute, his supporters think he's
honest. That's just a special kind of ignorance you can't fix.
While some of his supporters have since seen the
light of day, a majority of them still trust him despite all
the explanations of his lies the media makes. (...)
Democrats Back a 'Green New Deal'?
is by Sonali Kolhatkar on Common Dreams and originally on Truthdig. It
starts as follows:
News related to climate
change is rarely good. More often than not, it engenders a sense of
doom and helplessness among the public. But lately there has been a
glimmer of hope on the horizon for climate justice, and it bears the
name Sunrise Movement.
Even before the midterm
elections took place, activists in the youth-based climate justice
organization had planned a sit-in at the Washington, D.C., offices of
California representative and longtime Democratic leader Nancy
Pelosi. A week after the election, the approximately 200 people
that crowded into Pelosi’s office were visited by newly elected New
York Rep. Alexandria
Ocasio-Cortez. Addressing the climate activists, Ocasio-Cortez said, “My
journey here started at Standing Rock,” referring to the powerful
indigenous-led rebellion to stop the Dakota Access pipeline project in
2017. Immediately afterward, Ocasio-Cortez pledged to introduce
legislation to create a “Select
Committee on a Green New Deal,” as one of her first actions in
In fact, this more or
less continues "Do you know where your
lawmaker stands" from November
21, and it also adds some clarity on both the Sunrise Movement
Green New Deal.
Here is more:
William Lawrence, a
co-founder of the Sunrise Movement, explained to me in an
interview that the movement is motivated by the existential threat
of the climate crisis. “We have hundreds of millions of lives worldwide
that are at stake because of the threat of runaway climate change,” he
said. The solutions out of this crisis are known and achievable: “We
need to overhaul our energy system, our food system and our transit
system,” Lawrence explained. In his opinion, “The only way to do that
in time is for the government to take an active role in the economy to
shape and guide the transition. That’s exactly how we got ourselves out
of the Great Depression.”
Yes, this seems mostly
correct to me. Here is more:
What activists with the
Sunrise Movement are cleverly doing is demanding that their elected
representatives, including Pelosi, Pallone and Lee, answer the
Is Your Plan?” “Not only do they not have a plan,” said Lawrence,
“but they don’t have a plan to make a plan.”
Actually, I do not
think that Pelosi etc. "don’t
have a plan to make a plan".
I dislike Pelosi, but I don't think she is stupid.
Here is the last bit
that I quote from this article:
Lawrence and his fellow
activists are demanding that Democrats back a “Green New Deal”—a
proposal whose very name invokes the important government jobs program
that President Franklin Delano Roosevelt signed into law to help end
the Great Depression. The idea is one whose time has come. Rampant
poverty and climate change are arguably the two most important
challenges facing the U.S. today. A Green New Deal would address both
crises together. At this moment, Congress has no plan to solve either
income inequality or global warming.
Yes indeed, and this
also gives some more clarity om the "Green New Deal", which its
proponents also do not think will succeed before 2021, when
Trump will be gone and the Democrats will have many more seats in the
House and the Senate. This is a recommended article.
Rehabilitation of Robert Mueller
is by Kit Knightly on the Off-Guardian. It starts as follows:
The “Resistance” –
the loose affiliation of liberals, progressives and neo-conservatives
dedicated to opposing Donald Trump – is NOT a grass-roots movement.
They don’t speak for the everyman or the poor or the oppressed. They
are a distraction, nothing more. A parlor game. The face to Trump’s heel.
The Resistance is the voice
of the Deep State – Pro-war, pro-globalisation, pro-Imperialism. It
just hides its true face behind a mask of “progressive values”. They
prove this with their own actions – opposing Trump’s moves toward peace
with North Korea and finding common ground with Russia.
Yes, I think that is
fundamentally correct, indeed in part because I very quickly
of the "Resistance", which I did already in 2016.
Here is more:
This process has contrived
to turn hard-line, inveterate warmongers into a pantheon
of “liberal” heroes. John “bomb bomb Iran” McCain was mourned
across the media as if he were a champion of civil rights, while Bill
Kristol and his ilk are suddenly regular guests on notionally “liberal”
…and Robert Mueller
receives a glowing write-up in the Guardian, being praised as “America’s straightest arrow”.
Yes, I again mostly
agree. Here is more:
Far more telling than what
it does say…is what it does not say. It mentions Mueller’s
role as head of the FBI during the launch of the “war on terror”, but
doesn’t go into any of the abuse of human rights that accompanied (and
still accompanies) the increasingly authoritarian powers granted to US
intelligence agencies by the Patriot Act.
Let’s be clear: Mueller’s
FBI was complicit in rendition, torture, Gitmo. All of it.
Yes, quite so. Here is the
last bit that I quote from this article:
administration is dangerous – it still stokes warlike approaches to
Iran and Russia. It has directly threatened Venezuela and Cuba. But you
can’t fight the right-hand of the Deep State by clasping the left. They
all join in the middle. They’re the same monster.
Anti-Trumpers, all over the
world, need to take a good look at WHO they’re fighting alongside, and
ask themselves WHAT they are fighting for.
I agree and this is a
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 (!!).