Posted by: quiscus | July 15, 2010

July 15, 2010

1.  Tonkin false flag:

“Records Show Doubts on ’64 Vietnam Crisis

In an echo of the debates over the discredited intelligence that helped make the case for the war in Iraq, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on Wednesday released more than 1,100 pages of previously classified Vietnam-era transcripts that show senators of the time sharply questioning whether they had been deceived by the White House and the Pentagon over the 1964 Gulf of Tonkin incident.

“If this country has been misled, if this committee, this Congress, has been misled by pretext into a war in which thousands of young men have died, and many more thousands have been crippled for life, and out of which their country has lost prestige, moral position in the world, the consequences are very great,” Senator Albert Gore Sr. of Tennessee, the father of the future vice president, said in March 1968 in a closed session of the Foreign Relations Committee. ”

2.  “Central banking and militarism are intimately linked.

“One can say without exaggeration that inflation is an indispensable means of militarism,” Ludwig von Mises wrote. “Without it, the repercussions of war on welfare become obvious much more quickly and penetratingly; war weariness would set in much earlier.”
This explains why American politicians have always resorted to the legalized counterfeiting of central banking to finance wars, the most expensive of all government programs. If citizens had a clearer picture of the true costs, they would be more inclined to oppose non-defensive intervention and to force all wars to hastier conclusions.

In the wars that have followed, central-bank financing has inflicted essentially the same kind of damage on American society: inflation, economic chaos, reduced real wages, price controls and other government interventions, and ideological attacks on capitalism rather than the real culprit, the Fed.

Adam Smith recognized the advantage of financing wars with taxes rather than public debt when he wrote, “Wars would in general be more speedily concluded, and less wantonly undertaken. The people feeling, during the continuance of the war, the complete burden of it, would soon grow weary of it, and the government, in order to humor them, would not be under the necessity of carrying it on longer than it was necessary to do so.” Central-bank inflation renders the costs of war even more invisible than debt financing does and is therefore even more disastrous for the American public.”

3.  “The “Well Integrity Test” Is a Sham: “This Bet Is Against The Citizens Of The United States Of America Being Smart Enough To Figure Any Of This Out”

Yesterday, I pointed out that two oil industry experts – Robert Cavner and former Shell CEO John Hofmeister – said that the “well integrity test” should not be conducted because there is no benefit, and it could very well blow out the well.

Today, an oil and gas industry veteran with 30 years experience who goes by the alias Fishgrease says that the well integrity test is a PR stunt meant to fool the American people”

4.  “Tony Blair : A Bright Shining Lie. When Mass Murder is upheld as a Peace-making Endeavor….

“Now all my lies are proved untrue

And I must face the men I slew.

What tale shall serve me here among

Mine angry and defrauded young?”

(Epitaphs of War, Rudyard Kipling, 1865-1936.)”

5.  “The revolving door spins faster on healthcare reform

In other words, implementation of the massive healthcare bill just enacted by the Congress will be overseen by a former high-level executive of the nation’s largest private health insurer.  As Marcy Wheeler writes:  “It’s a nice trick: send your VP to write a law mandating that the middle class buy shitty products like yours, then watch that VP move into the executive branch to ‘oversee’ the implementation of the law.”  Indeed, Fowler played a crucial role in shaping the healthcare bill to ensure there was no public option and to compel every single American to purchase the products of the private healthcare industry (including those of her former employer).  As Politico put it last year:  “If you drew an organizational chart of major players in the Senate healthcare negotiations, Fowler would be the chief operating officer.”  It was Fowler who was literally writing the healthcare bills for Baucus which, at least at the time, progressives found so objectionable.

Fowler is the very embodiment of the sleazy Revolving Door and lobbyist-dominated politics which candidate Barack Obama endlessly vowed to subvert.

Needless to say, the hardest-core and blindest Obama loyalists are hard at work defending this hiring and smearing those who criticize it.  Watch here as they viciously attack David Sirota for highlighting this story by hilariously insisting that Fowler’s work at WellPoint makes her “well-qualified” to implement the healthcare bill.  One of them accused me last night of using “guilt by association” in noting this hiring:  behold as what were once (during the Obama candidacy) noble and inspiring objections to “Revolving Door Politics” have now magically morphed (during the Obama presidency) into unfair and pernicious McCarthyite tactics (how dare you think someone should be disqualified from a high-level government position just because they recently worked as a high-level executive at the very industry they’re about to regulate!).  Still other reflexive Obama defenders (including one who writes at Crooks & Liars) are engaged in their standard, false smear tactics spat at anyone who writes critically about their leader’s actions, while — most notably — one former PhRMA official, John Michael O’Brien, echoed these Obama defenders by attacking Sirota for writing about the story and insisting that the noble former WellPoint VP is an ideal choice to implement the healthcare law.

In fairness, though, what else are they going to say?  This is an administration that almost employs more Goldman Sachs officials in financial and regulatory positions than Goldman Sachs itself does.  One of the first acts of Interior Secretary Ken Salazar was to hire a BP executive to serve as a deputy administrator for land and minerals management.  And now they’ve just hired to implement the new healthcare law someone who was just recently in charge of the lobbying and government activities of the nation’s largest private insurer.  With a record like that, it’s not really possible for them to pretend any longer that they oppose the “Revolving Door Politics” which the Obama campaign so vehemently scorned.”

6.  “How Facts Backfire

Researchers discover a surprising threat to democracy: our brains

It’s one of the great assumptions underlying modern democracy that an informed citizenry is preferable to an uninformed one. “Whenever the people are well-informed, they can be trusted with their own government,” Thomas Jefferson wrote in 1789. This notion, carried down through the years, underlies everything from humble political pamphlets to presidential debates to the very notion of a free press. Mankind may be crooked timber, as Kant put it, uniquely susceptible to ignorance and misinformation, but it’s an article of faith that knowledge is the best remedy. If people are furnished with the facts, they will be clearer thinkers and better citizens. If they are ignorant, facts will enlighten them. If they are mistaken, facts will set them straight.

In the end, truth will out. Won’t it?

Maybe not. Recently, a few political scientists have begun to discover a human tendency deeply discouraging to anyone with faith in the power of information. It’s this: Facts don’t necessarily have the power to change our minds. In fact, quite the opposite. In a series of studies in 2005 and 2006, researchers at the University of Michigan found that when misinformed people, particularly political partisans, were exposed to corrected facts in news stories, they rarely changed their minds. In fact, they often became even more strongly set in their beliefs. Facts, they found, were not curing misinformation. Like an underpowered antibiotic, facts could actually make misinformation even stronger.


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