in all the world is more dangerous, than sincere ignorance and
-- Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
from April 10, 2019
This is a
Nederlog of Wednesday,
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 three 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 April 10, 2019:
1. Kirstjen Nielsen’s Cruel Legacy
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. Bernie Sanders Has a Simple Message
for Fox News Viewers
3. Runaway Inequality Is a National Emergency, Billionaire
4. Socialism for the Rich, Capitalism for the Rest
5. Amid Brexit Chaos, Theresa May's Conservative Party Implodes
Nielsen’s Cruel Legacy
article is by Amy Goodman and Juan González on Democracy Now! I
abbreviated the title. It starts with the following introduction:
I start this review - yet again - by repeating something I
wrote on April 7:
Department of Homeland
Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen has been forced out of her role at
the helm of President Trump’s immigration policy after reportedly
resisting a move by the president to revive his family separation
policy at the U.S. border. We look at Nielsen’s legacy with Renée
Feltz, a Democracy Now! correspondent and producer who has long
reported on the criminalization of immigrants, family detention and the
business of detention. Nielsen oversaw Trump’s “zero tolerance” family
separation policy last year and came under fire by Democrats for lying
to Congress about the policy, as well as for withholding information on
children who died in U.S. custody. At least two children died under
Nielsen’s leadership: 8-year-old Felipe Alonzo Gómez and 7-year-old
Jakelin Caal Maquín.
I say, and I start -
again - with the definition of "kidnapping"
that is on the Wikipedia, which starts as follows (and is much more
law, kidnapping is the unlawful carrying away (asportation) and confinement of a person
against his or her will. Thus, it is a composite crime. It can also be
defined as false imprisonment by means of abduction, both of which are
separate crimes that when committed simultaneously upon the same person
merge as the single crime of kidnapping.
Kidnapping of a child is also
known as child abduction, and these are sometimes
separate legal categories.
Kidnapping may be done to demand for ransom
in exchange for releasing the victim, or for other illegal purposes.
Kidnapping can be accompanied by bodily injury which elevates the crime
to aggravated kidnapping.
And I think that what
the Trump government did in this case simply was kidnapping,
but then I seem to be the only one (that I have read) who calls
it so. Then again, I can read and I can think, and for
me it is and
I wrote the above on April 7. Here is more more from the lying kidnapper Nielsen:
In fact, to the best of my knowledge,
Nielsen is lying
like Trump does. Here are some background facts, that
I again copied from my review of April 7:
It is important to note that these minors are very well taken care of.
Don’t believe the press. They are very well taken care of. … We operate
according to some of the highest standards in the country. We provide
food, medical, education and all needs that the child requests.
2700 kids that were kidnapped, and then, half a year later, it
that there are 47,000 more, and that the U.S. Health and
Human Services Department
fact does not know how many children have been kidnapped (of
course, without using that term) by the U.S. government.
Here is the last bit that I quote from the present article:
I say. And this is a strongly recommended article
(though it escapes me why people apparently refuse to
call kidnapping kidnapping).
GONZÁLEZ: I think we have that ProPublica audio from inside a
U.S. Customs and Border Protection facility, where children were
between the ages of 4 and 10 and are heard crying “Mama” and “Papi”
after being separated from their parents. This is the audio.
[crying] Papi! Papi! Papi! Papi!
[translated] Well, we have an orchestra here, right? What we’re missing
is a conductor.
GOODMAN: That’s a border
agent saying that over.
GONZÁLEZ: And, Renée—yeah, that was a border agent, yes.
RENÉE FELTZ: Incredible. Incredible to see that
people carried out this policy, to hear it carried out. Kirstjen
Nielsen was one of those people. She helped President Trump.
Sanders Has a Simple Message for Fox News Viewers
article is by Jake Johnson on Truthdig and originally on Common Dreams.
It starts as follows:
I think Bernie Sanders is
correct, although I fear he will convert few Fox viewers.
Distinguishing between Fox
News’ massive audience and its
extremist on-air personalities, Sen. Bernie Sanders said
he agreed to attend a town hall hosted by the right-wing
network because he wants to make the case to Trump voters that the
president lied when he promised healthcare for all, no cuts to Medicare
or Medicaid, and a tax bill that benefits the working class.
“When I go on Fox,
what I will say is, ‘Look, many of you voted for Donald Trump, but he
lied to you. He told you he was gonna provide healthcare for everybody.
Yet his policies are to throw 30 million people off of the health
insurance they have,'” the Vermont senator and 2020 presidential
contender said in an interview with HuffPost‘s Amanda
“He told you he wasn’t
gonna cut Medicare and Medicaid. He lied to you,” Sanders continued.
“Massive cuts in his budget for Medicare and Medicaid. We’re not going
to let him do it, but that’s what he wants to do. Told you his tax plan
would not benefit the wealthy. He lied again. Of course, 83 percent of
the benefits go to the top one percent. How do you explain that to
people who voted for Trump if you don’t talk to people who voted for
Here is sime more:
I agree, but as above.
Here is the last bit that I quote from this article:
Sanders—who has emerged
as the early Democratic front-runner with strong grassroots
enthusiasm and a massive
first-quarter fundraising haul—said his campaign’s strategy of
reaching as many people as possible is not just about an appearance
on Fox News, which he acknowledged is effectively a
“propaganda arm” of the Trump White House.
“If you check where I go,
and where I will go into this campaign, I’m not just going to go into
blue districts. You’ve got to go into areas where people are,” Sanders
said. “Working people need to know the truth, and that is that Donald
Trump betrayed them, lied to them. And I intend to do that.”
I agree again, as above,
and this is a recommended article.
“For better or for
it is for worse—for whatever reason, you know, Fox has
a huge viewing audience,” Sanders said. “And to simply say that we’re
not going to talk to millions of people who watch that network, I don’t
think is smart.”
Inequality Is a National Emergency, Billionaire Banker Warns
This article is by
Ilana Novick on Truthdig. It starts as follows:
Well... here is some
In 2019, billionaires have
more wealth than ever before while “almost half of humanity have barely
escaped extreme poverty, living on less than $5.50 a day,”
international charity Oxfam
found in its latest survey of global inequality.
Such wealth disparity is a
crisis for the future of capitalism and the United States’ economic and
political standing worldwide, Ray Dalio, billionaire and co-chairman of
Bridgewater Associates, the world’s largest hedge fund, said in a “60
Minutes” interview on Sunday. “If I was the president of the
United States,” Dalio told “60 Minutes” correspondent Bill Whitaker,
“what I would do is recognize that this is a national emergency.”
In a LinkedIn
essay elaborating on the connection between capitalism and income
inequality, Dalio warns that conditions in America today are scarily
similar to those in the 1930s, when countries like Germany fell into
the hands of authoritarian governments. “There has been little or no
real income growth for most people for decades” and “prime-age workers
in the bottom 60% have had no real (i.e., inflation-adjusted) income
growth since 1980,” he notes.
In the first place, this is mostly how it was around 1970 (almost
years ago), although there were then some fewer billionaires. Then
again, in 1970 there were also half as many humans as there are
in fact the misery for the poor is - at least -
twice as strong as it
was in 1970.
And in the second place, while Dalio - and the
last link gives some background - is correct in what he says, I
think this ought to be known (and probably is known) to other
In the third place, I can think of one good reason for billionaires
say what Dalio said, and that is that in a country with ever less
people in the middle class, there is ever less money to buy the goods
billionaires are producing (which is a fact obvious to me since the
1990s at the very least).
Then again, I have no ideas about why Dalio did say what he
is some more:
I take it all of the above
is correct. Here is the last bit that I quote from this article:
Dalio also sounds the alarm
on the potential for conflict that results from major gaps between the
haves and have-nots: “Disparity in wealth, especially when accompanied
by disparity in values, leads to increasing conflict and, in the
government, that manifests itself in the form of populism of the left
and populism of the right and often in revolutions of one sort or
While he advocates for
higher taxes on the wealthy in general, public-private partnerships,
and encouraging politicians to consider return on investments rather
than focusing simply on budgets, Dalio is light on specific policy
ideas for how to achieve these goals and prevent the revolution he
Yes, I mostly agree and
this is a recommended article.
Growing up, he writes, “I
raised with the belief that having equal opportunity to have basic
care, good education, and employment is what is fair and best for our
collective well-being. To have these things and use them to build a
great life is what was meant by living the American Dream.” Now, Dalio
explains on “60 Minutes,” “The American dream is lost.”
4. Socialism for the
Rich, Capitalism for the Rest
This article is by
Robert Reich on his site. It starts as follows:
Yes, I mostly agree with
the above, but by now I am pretty irritated that absolutely no
journalist (or "public intellectual") that I have read during the
last ten years (!!) as much as attempts to give any
definition of socialism - except me: See Crisis: On Socialism - nor attempts to give any
definition of fascism - except me: See On Fascism and
Neofascism: Definitions - while I have seen either term being
used by many journalists and by quite a few "public intellectuals" as if their meanings are
quite clear to them, which simply is a lie (by omission).
And this is yet another example. I am sorry, but I think Robert Reich
is more than intelligent enough to have noted the same. Then again,
while I like Reich, one of the differences between us is that
he wrote a book called "Saving Capitalism", while my own position
that I do like democratic socialism considerably better than
capitalism, my skepticism mostly pertains to the probable
revolution that is required to get there, since I know that
all revolutions failed (certainly in terms of the ends of the
Anyway... back to the article:
Yes indeed. Here is some
No, I am sorry: "socialism
for the rich" is bullshit
on any plausible definition of socialism, or
indeed of capitalism: What Reich calls "socialism for
the rich" is simple
capitalism as it works for rich capitalists.
Here is the last bit that I quote from this article:
I am not
interested in what "the conservative mind" understands by "socialism",
but Reich reasons as if what they think might be an adequate
of "socialism" (which Reich has never defined where I have seen it).
To the conservative mind,
the specter of socialism conjures up a society in which no one is held
accountable, and no one has to work for what they receive. Yet, that’s
exactly the society Trump and the Republicans are promoting for the
Meanwhile, most Americans
are subject to an increasingly harsh and arbitrary capitalism.
They need stronger safety
nets, and they deserve a bigger piece of the economic pie.
If you want to call this
socialism, fine. I call it fair.
Besides, to call "stronger
safety nets" and "a bigger piece of the economic pie" socialism is bullshit as
well, unless you also want to insist that Eisenhower was a
and the USA in the 1950ies was nearly socialistic - but both seem to me
I conclude that Reich is mostly not honest in this article.
Brexit Chaos, Theresa May's Conservative Party Implodes
article is by Jőrg Schindler on Spiegel International. This is from not
far from its beginning:
Yes, I think most of the
above is correct. As to the Tories: I hope they implode, but I have
decent ideas about how likely that is.
Brexit, which was
originally supposed to take place on Friday of last week, has gone into
overtime. As things currently stand, it's unclear if the extra period
will last weeks, months or even years. But the longer the political war
of attrition surrounding the United Kingdom's departure from the
European Union continues, the more divided the country and its
institutions will become.
That's especially true of
the Conservative Party of Theresa May, who is, at least for now, still
the prime minister.
It was a small group of
Conservatives, blinded by nationalism, that brought on the referendum
in the first place. It is that same group that has also ensured that
every attempt to bring Brexit to a conclusion -- any conclusion, really
-- has failed miserably. Yet it was only on Tuesday evening, almost
three years after the referendum, that Theresa May made her first
desperate attempt to free herself from the hardliners by offering to
meet with Labour to find a joint way out of the chaos.
It could very well be that
May will be able to pull her country back from the brink at the very
last second. But for her party, it may already be too late.
Here is some more:
The Tories, long one of
best-oiled political machines in Europe, are on their way to total
collapse. William Hague, a leader of the party, has warned that the
situation is far worse now even than it was following the devastating
election defeat against Tony Blair in 1997. "The ruin I moved into as
the new leader was, at least, intact," he has said.
It was May who -- following the narrow referendum result -- steered her
country towards a hard Brexit, despite that being only one possible
interpretation of the vote. In her first big speech, she announced the
country would exit the common market, leave behind the customs union
and throw out the many (EU) immigrants who were allegedly abusing the
country's social services.
Then, this woman -- who has
a weakness for pithy grandiloquence -- backed herself into a rhetorical
corner: "No deal is better than a bad deal," she famously said.
I think the above is also mostly
true (though I am not one who trusts Hague).
Here is some more:
Rarely have so many
been willing to turn their backs on their parties in such a short
period of time. And never have the two major parties had to tolerate so
much resistance and lack of party solidarity. Because of Brexit, the
collapse of the de facto two-party system has now become a realistic
Perhaps, but if so, the
schema that is at the basis of the British elections should also be -
quite radically - reviewed, and I see no reason to suppose it will.
Here is the last bit that I
quote from this article:
Tory historian Tim
Bale, a professor at Queen Mary University of London, speaks of the
"worst crisis in the history of the Conservative Party." The last time
such a hopeless situation occurred, he says, was back in the 1920s,
when the party fought bitterly over free trade. This time, however, the
crisis is "both acute and chronic," Bale argues -- and with Theresa
May, the party is headed by a leader in name only.
Perhaps. And this is a
recommended article, which contains a lot more than I quoted.
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 3 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 (!!).