China is a bad country 7

The coronavirus is Chinese. It comes from China.

President Trump is right to call it “the Chinese Virus”.

China is virulent. Infections seep out of it and poison the world.

Ann Coulter writes at Townhall:

Here’s a thought: While self-quarantining with their families in multimillion-dollar Manhattan co-ops, Wall Street wives ought to have a chat with their Master of the Universe husbands about China, globalism and political correctness. Those are the vectors of their robber-baron wealth.

Thanks to “globalism” – i.e., cheap goods from China – we’ve gotten many wondrous things, for example:

Toothpaste on American shelves made with a poison found in antifreeze;

Toxic Chinese drywall installed in about 100,000 U.S. homes, emitting noxious fumes that destroyed electrical wiring and metal fixtures and sickened homeowners. Replacement of the drywall, pipes and wiring cost Americans billions of dollars.

Hundreds, possibly thousands, of American dogs killed by melamine-laced Chinese dog food in 2007.

The loss of about 200,000 beautiful maple trees lining the streets of small New England towns, eaten by Asian long-horned beetles that arrived on Chinese cargo ships in 1996. The U.S. taxpayer spends hundreds of millions of dollars to eradicate the repeated outbreaks that continue to this day, despite promises from the Chinese to do better.

Viral pandemics – H1N1 (from China), bird flu (from China), SARS (from China) and now the Wuhan virus (from China).

Is it really worth paying $3 for a T-shirt at Walmart, rather than $9? The precise reason Chinese goods are so cheap is that they skip the crucial quality-control step.

The media’s reaction to this latest pandemic out of China is to say …

Let’s get one thing straight: the Chinese have nothing to do with this! 

Well, like most animal-to-human viruses, this one did originate in China and then spread across the globe when Chinese tourists infected people in other countries. …

When the pandemic arrived, at least the World Health Organization leapt to action. First step: Find a cure? Develop a vaccine? Demand protections for the elderly?

NO!

WHO officials got together and worked on coming up with a new name for the “Wuhan virus” that sounded less Asian.

Next, the WHO put out a “Fact Sheet” to ensure that those with Kung Flu would not be stigmatized. It instructed:

DO talk about people “acquiring” or “contracting” #COVID-19.

DON’T talk about people “transmitting COVID-19”, “infecting others” or “spreading the virus” as it implies intentional transmission & assigns blame.

The WHO is a UN agency and therefore incurably corrupt, friendly to tyrannies, deceitful, anti-American, and evil through and through.

And therefore Americans on the Left appreciate it immensely.

Americans on the Left “think” that to be racist is much worse than to be a spreader of coronavirus:

As fear of the Chinese virus spread, Gloria Allred brought a lawsuit against a Los Angeles school for sending an Asian student to the school nurse after he coughed in class.

Americans are cowering in their homes. Airlines, restaurants, beaches, ski resorts, professional sports, colleges and stores have been shut down. But we must never violate the fundamental civil right of an Asian to cough in class and refuse to see the nurse!

The New York Times has also been on the racism beat, with these pressing stories:

As Chinese Grapple With a New Illness, an Old Stigma Is Revived

An Outbreak of Racist Sentiment as Coronavirus Reaches Australia

As Coronavirus Spreads, So Does Anti-Chinese Sentiment

And there’s more!

Virus Fuels Anti-Chinese Sentiment Overseas

Coronavirus Outbreak Risks Reviving Stigma for China

… A few weeks ago – before a trillion dollars in wealth was destroyed by the coronavirus panic and we learned the real disease was racism – everyone, including the [New York] Times, admitted that the virus was brought to Italy by two Chinese tourists.

“[T]here had not yet been any confirmed cases in Italy,” the Times reported, “until Jan. 30, when the government announced the first two cases.” The scientific director of an infectious diseases hospital in Rome identified them: “Two Chinese tourists visiting Rome.”

[But then] the Times buried this fact in an article perversely titled: “Cruise Passengers Are Held at Italian Port in False Alarm Over Coronavirus.” On one hand, a bunch of cruise passengers were inconvenienced for 12 hours; on the other hand, a viral pandemic that could kill millions was introduced to Italy. You write the headline.

Lombardy is the Italian region most devastated by the Wuhan virus. As far back as 2003, a Library of Congress report cited Lombardy as having the highest concentration of Chinese immigrants in Italy. Our media refuses to tell us this fact today – or any day. …

According to the dire estimates of the Imperial College of London – whose assessment we are following – excepting those with underlying medical conditions, the new coronavirus is far less deadly than the seasonal flu to anyone under 60 years old. It’s no worse than the 2017-18 flu season for those in their 60s.

But it’s five to 10 times more deadly than the regular flu for those in their 70s and 80s, respectively.

We ought to surround old folks homes with the National Guard and call it a day. It would probably save more lives and wouldn’t destroy the economy.

But there’s no time to think about saving lives.

The important thing is to stamp out the idea that a virus that originated in China has anything to do China.

Because in truth it has everything to do with China.

Democrats object to that being said, not only because in their race-obsessed minds saying so is “racist”, but also because their policies for America are of a Chinese Communist kind.

The whole line of Democratic presidential candidates were for Communist policies: national health (death panel) service, open borders (for world Communist government), abortion on an industrial scale, leaving newborn babies to die, censoring news, disarming the citizens

John Nolte writes at Breitbart:

With some experts predicting, at a minimum, anywhere from 480,000 to 1.6 million American deaths from the coronavirus over the next three to 18 months, how smart does urban living, mass transit, open borders, reusable straws, reusable grocery bags, reusable water bottles, gun restrictions, over-regulated housing, using the Centers for Disease Control to fight gun violence, and outsourcing to China look now?

Hey, we don’t know what’s going to happen with the coronavirus. What we do know, though, is that between last Sunday and this Sunday, things went from Zero to Crazy in one week: We shut down our economy, store shelves are empty or emptying, the president’s on television every day, and there’s serious talk of a national quarantine.

We are also learning, at a fairly rapid pace, how a pandemic operates, how a virus spreads, and how vulnerable we are to such things, and just how so many leftist ideas have made us even more vulnerable.

Just for a moment, close your eyes, and picture the establishment media’s and left’s (but I repeat myself) idea of The Virtuous American…

    • Virtuous American wakes up in a small efficiency apartment located in a densely populated high-rise, eco-friendly building where there’s no fresh air because you can’t open the windows. But all that recycled air ensures a perfect 72 degree lifestyle.
    • Virtuous American exits his high-rise building for a half-mile walk through Virtue City, which is teeming with people.
    • Along the way, Virtuous American stops at a coffee shop, which is packed with other Virtuous Americans, who are handing reusable, eco-friendly containers to a barista who fills everyone’s order without changing his gloves (to save plastic) or washing his hands (to save water).
    • Virtuous American rides to work in jam-packed subway car.
    • Virtuous American exits the subway and walks to work through a sanctuary city teeming with illegal aliens who have been allowed to sneak in from every foreign country and stay without being screened or tested.
    • Virtuous American goes to work in an urban high-rise building that is hermetically sealed to save energy, which means recycled air instead of fresh air… You can’t open the windows.
    • Throughout the day, Virtuous American sips water from a bacteria-infested reusable bottle (that he might have rinsed out with cold water a few days ago). He refills his environmentally friendly, reusable bottle from a centrally located, environmentally friendly dispenser everyone touches throughout the day.
    • For lunch, Virtuous American enters a crowded deli and orders food prepared and served by illegal aliens who have never been screened or tested.
    • On the way back to the office, Virtuous American digs into his man-purse and removes a bacteria-infested reusable straw (he or may not have run a little cold water through a couple of days ago) and pops it into his iced coffee while gingerly walking through a poopy homeless encampment because Virtue City’s building regulations protect Gaia.
    • After work, Virtuous American stops at the grocery store and fills his environmentally friendly bacteria-infested reusable cloth grocery bags (that he might have washed two weeks ago) with fresh fruits and vegetables.

Then the pandemic hits… And thanks to a dense population, crowded mass transit, recycled air, poopy streets, bacteria-infested (but environmentally friendly) cups, straws, bottles, and bags, it spreads like wildfire though Virtue City.

Will Virtuous American be laughing at McMansion American while looking for a place in that tiny (but environmentally friendly) apartment to store enough food and water for four weeks?

Will Virtuous American be laughing at Gun-Nut American when tensions increase due to empty store shelves and the only thing between Virtuous American and I’m Taking All Your Shit American is a door made from 100% recycled paper products?

Will Virtuous American be laughing at Hick American who lives anywhere from 50 feet to 50 acres from any potential Possibly Infected American?

And what about Globalist American? When his parents can’t get their medications because they’re made in China, how funny is America First American looking now, pal?

And let’s not forget Social Justice American, the American who demands the Centers for Disease Control atomize its focus to include obesity and guns.

What do these environmental loons think? That the whole idea of disposable items was just for laughs? That single-use was developed by some Bond villain desperate to destroy the planet? That going out to the country for “fresh air” was just some quaint concept?

No, the reason disposable items became so popular was sanitation. What could be safer than removing a straw from a sealed paper sleeve? Those straws are now outlawed in California.

What could be safer than single-use grocery bags where you throw away that leaked meat juice instead of carrying it around until you finally throw the bags in the wash? Those single-use bags are now banned in eight states, including New York, whose ban took effect on March 1.

What could be safer than opening your own factory-sealed water bottle?

What could be more secure and safe than a home large enough to self-quarantine for two months and the firearms to protect it?

What could be smarter than not relying on China, a country that is infamous for being Pandemic Ground Zero, for our supply chains?

Why do you think we had immigrants funneled through Ellis Island? So we knew who was coming in. So we could give them a medical check, dumbass.

Oh, and by all means Medicare for All! Even as the private sector gears us up for the testing our government couldn’t handle, even as Democrat governors beg for more state autonomy to handle these health issues… By all means, it’s time to hand our health care over to the one-size-fits-all geniuses whose health care killed countless American veterans. 

But there was Joe Biden … promising that in the first 100 days of his administration the borders will be wide open.

And he’s going to pass tougher gun laws.

And he’s going to make us even more dependent on foreign oil.

And he doesn’t take the threat of China seriously.

And he opposes travel bans [even when they help to stop the spread of a disease].

And, and, and…

And no matter what happens, the Left will never, ever, ever change their ways or stop promoting their ideal of The Virtuous American.

*

Not only did the virus originate in China – the Chinese dictatorship went to some trouble to let it spread.

To emphasize China’s guilt we quote this, by Guy Benson writing at Townhall:

A recent study determined that if the Chinese government had listened to an early whistleblower and quickly initiated containment efforts, rather than punishing and censoring the information, cases in their country could have been reduced by up to 95 percent: “The early detection and isolation of cases was estimated to prevent more infections than travel restrictions and contact reductions, but integrated NPIs would achieve the strongest and most rapid effect. If NPIs could have been conducted one week, two weeks, or three weeks earlier in China, cases could have been reduced by 66%, 86%, and 95%, respectively, together with significantly reducing the number of affected areas.”

We are living through another grave legacy of Communism. That won’t do much to help alleviate our current immense health and economic challenges, and it doesn’t absolve western leaders of any accountability for poor decisions, but it’s still the truth.

Mass murder by mistake? 14

Writing  about the coronavirus that is killing thousands of people all over the world, Conrad Black says:

China now purports—with what must be acknowledged as majestic (though not simply admirable) aplomb—to be laying out a “silk road” of medical assistance to late-coming sufferer-nations. Of course, these nations are all victims of China’s official lies about the medical dangers it had inadvertently fostered and negligently transmitted. Having inflicted this pestilence on the world, China now claims to be the indispensable world leader in mastering the problem.

But was the virus “inadvertently fostered”? Is it not at least possible that an inhumane power, antagonistic to most of the rest of the world, would foster a biological weapon such as the coronavirus in a laboratory? 

Of course, the Chinese must not be allowed to get away with this colossal rodomontade. The United States must take the lead in repatriating pharmaceutical production from China, demanding the World Health Organization cease to be a shill-and-whitewash operation for the Peoples’ Republic, and render a truthful and objective account of how this virus got started and how it got so completely out of control.

Is it not at least possible that it was deliberately let out of captivity?  Not “negligently transmitted” but malevolently released? 

Sure it killed a lot of the regime’s own subject people, but when was that ever a problem to the regime? To use a popular turn of phrase, it is “not a bug but a feature” of Communism. The Chinese Communist dictatorship has required untold number of infants to be left to die. It kills people in order to harvest their organs for sale. And – Conrad Black points out – it has trampled millions underfoot, “oppressed and traduced” millions, “from the long Civil War (1920s-1949) through the Great Leap Forward (1958-1962), the Cultural Revolution (1966-1976), and the occupation of Tibet”, to its enlarging concentration camps and recent violent suppression of protestors in Hong Kong.

All of which is a matter of “praxis”, the implementation of Communist orthodoxy, which states: it is the collective that matters, not the individual. That is the core, the hub, the nitty-gritty of Communism.

As if the collective can feel pain or fear death! 

The Chinese role must be exposed in effectively assuring the exportation of the coronavirus to the whole world, including through the large concentrations of Chinese workers building the self-important “Belt and Road” with which the Middle Kingdom will assert itself across the Eurasian land-mass, and through its failure to give advisory warnings to international travelers. China deliberately ignored the universally recognized responsibilities of all countries to report outbreaks of communicable diseases promptly and accurately. …

This attempt of the Chinese government, as it blames the United States for this debacle and threatens to be sluggish about the transmission to the United States of medical supplies produced in China by American companies it had induced to invest there, requires a sharp rejoinder.

Where this creates a conundrum for the United States is that although all Chinese comments on the coronavirus have to be somewhat, or even substantially, discounted, China’s partially plausible claim that it has turned the corner and that the virus is now in retreat, is extremely useful in combating the profound panic which is sweeping the United States and the entire Western world. In democratic countries, the media are free to hype any version of events, no matter how terrifying, and the temptation to do so in the United States is aggravated by the possibility presented to the anti-Trump media to hammer the president for incompetence and deception in an election year, and destroy the benefits of his skillful management of the economy.

This is going to require the administration to execute the sophisticated maneuver of exposing China’s duplicity and negligence, while citing the fact that even despite the Beijing regime’s blunders and disinformation, the incidence and impact of the coronavirus are clearly now declining in China.

But is the epidemic declining in China? Should we trust that claim while distrusting others made by the regime – simply because it is useful to us? Or should we pretend to believe it simply because it is useful to us? That seems to be what Conrad Black is advocating:

The remit of the scientists is to end the medical crisis, but the administration has the challenge of imposing total risk-avoidance measures on the susceptible elements of the population (the infirm and elderly), and urging those with minimal chance of serious, much less, mortal illness, to pursue their occupations as best they can …

On the premise of a plausible lie?

These are delicate balances the administration will have to sort out. …

Indeed they are.

I predict that the administration will thread this needle and that the coronavirus crisis will be seen to be receding before the end of May.

That would be good, but it is only wishful thinking. A penchant for substituting words for reality is an oriental characteristic that the global Left has adopted, and is unexpected from a conservative commentator. It is not a useful device. It doesn’t work. Reality goes on accruing its consequences.

We do not know, we cannot know, when this Chinese Communist killer stalking the earth will stop or be stopped.

Posted under China, communism, Health, United States by Jillian Becker on Tuesday, March 17, 2020

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Progress to extinction 1

The 100 year old international movement towards collectivism, world government, wealth redistribution, anti-individualism, elitist rule over equalized serf populations – in two words, Left Progressivism – is coming to an end.

In an age when ever more people everywhere are literate, have access to information, can communicate with others anywhere, communal subjugation becomes ever less possible.

Sure there are a few countries where populations still suffer under communist tyranny, notably North Korea, Cuba, Venezuela – and China. It is because China is so badly governed that coronavirus, a new killing disease, has emerged from it and is spreading through the world. The harm will last for decades, but Left Progressivism is slowly but surely, and at an accelerating pace, failing and dying, coming to an end.

It has gone about as far as it can go. Victor Davis Hanson writes about its reaching its peak in America; a point from which its only further advance can be to oblivion:

In 2020 we have finally hit peak progressivism

By that I mean the hard-left takeover of the Democratic Party and the accompanying progressive agenda now have reached an extreme—beyond which will only result in the steady erosion of radical ideology altogether. …

From 2009 through 2016, Barack Obama recalibrated the Democratic Party’s liberalism into progressive radicalism. He opened the border and all but dismantled existing immigration law. Sanctuary cities sprang up with impunity. Executive orders bypassed the Congress. The Iran Deal ignored the Senate’s treaty-making responsibilities. Obama sought to nationalize healthcare. The concept of “diversity” replaced affirmative action, by redefining racial oppression as distinct from historical grievance and economic disparity and instead lumping together 30 percent of the population as nonwhite, and thus antithetical to the new buzz construct of “white privilege”. Fast and Furious, the surveillance of the Associated Press reporters, Benghazi, the weaponization of the IRS, and the use of CIA, FBI, and DOJ to seed the spurious Steele dossier were all written off as proof of the “most scandal free” administration in memory.

But today Obamaism has been figuratively guillotined by the New Jacobins. It is found guilty of crimes of insufficient revolutionary zeal, as well as compromises with the U.S. Constitution and capitalism.

Once considered a crank socialist, Senator Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) now leads in many Democratic primary polls. Arriving with him at this moment in our politics is peak progressivism.

First-term socialists—House representatives such as Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) and her fellow “squad” members, inspired by Sanders—now set the new Democratic agenda. And it is one that is more radical than anything seen in modern American history and largely unsustainable: calls to level a wealth tax and new top income-tax rates of 70-90 percent, to abolish the Immigration and Customs Enforcement Service, all student debt, an enforceable southern border, the internal combustion engine, and most Second Amendment rights, and to enact multi-trillion dollar new entitlements as outlined in the Green New Deal, Medicare for All, free college, free healthcare for illegal aliens, and reparations.

Identity politics so rules the rhetoric of the new progressive party that all of its—exclusively white—primary finalists vie to be most vocal in the ritual damning of their own country (that has ironically ensured their own influence, power, success and wealth) as inherently “racist”.

Outside of the political sphere, peak progressivism had reinvented the university, rejecting Martin Luther King, Jr’s vision of racial integration and assimilation, by demanding racially obsessed dorms, safe spaces, and applications.

There is hardly a First Amendment on campuses anymore. Speakers with unpopular views are shouted down with impunity by student activists. “Trigger warnings” seek to censor required texts. The mere accusation of sexual harassment on campus is synonymous with the suspension of the Fourth, Fifth, Sixth, and Seventh Amendments. Skepticism over abortion, “climate change”, or identity politics can cancel out a faculty career.

It is hard to imagine where universities go after peak progressivism, since it would be the pure nihilism of abolishing grades, admissions standards, and student fees.

Peak progressivism calls for the abolition of the constitutionally mandated Electoral College. Radicals now fault past failed schemes to pack the federal and Supreme Court with left-wing justices only because they failed, and thus advance ways to make court-packing work in the present. The bolder among them wants to reconfigure the U.S. Senate into a proportionally representational house or abolish it altogether.

All that would be left after that would be the formal abolition of the U.S. Constitution itself.

Primary candidates compete with one another to water down voting laws, variously demanding that 16-year-olds, felons, and illegal aliens should be given the franchise.

The now far-Left Democrats fail to see that when their hopes for election lie, as they do, with criminals, lunatics, illegal aliens and the immature, there is something wrong with their policies.

Gay marriage, which Obama opposed in 2008 and later promoted after reelection, is now passé. The new civil rights cause celebre is transgenderism, an ancient syndrome known in the past under a variety of clinical definitions that affects less than half of one percent of the population. Who, after these peak progressive ideas, would be left as ineligible to vote—12-year-olds, those on death row, the rest of the earth’s population?

All moderate Democratic presidential candidates long ago dropped out. Those who have not, such as Joe Biden and Michael Bloomberg, are in virtual reeducation camps, as they promise to progressive rivals and the media to renounce most of their past positions, effusively apologizing for prior incorrect thinking and failure to become sufficiently “woke”. …

The much-discussed “intersectionality” is a construct, a myth. The history of ideological extremism is instead a war of all factions against one another.

We see just that in the peak progressive primaries. Michael Bloomberg is deemed a racist and sexist. But then so is Joe Biden. Bernie Sanders supposedly hires racists and sexists and won’t honor minimum wage laws. Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) thinks Bernie is condescending to women and minorities. Pete Buttigieg thinks he is the victim of Joe Biden’s subtle anti-gay political adds, and feels, but does not articulate, that the black community is inherently anti-homosexual. The race to tag others as victimizers and selves as victimized is endless.

Radicals also vie to make rivals look counter-revolutionary, as they advance ever more incoherent and unhinged schemes without a clue that they are losing not just moderate support but even liberal followers. The more Warren feels she must become the purest peak progressive on the debate stage and the most radical in the U.S. Senate, the more her former supporters feel she is either a conniving opportunist or nuts or both. …

Peak progressives cannot possibly live up to their rhetoric fantasies and so suffer from rank hypocrisies. Redistributionists like Warren and Sanders either fly on private jets or choose non-egalitarian first-class commercial. Hollywood stars who mouth crazy [socialist, egalitarian] Oscar and Grammy ceremony platitudes vie with each other to wear multi-thousand-dollar clothes, live in mansions, and own yachts—as they drive down ratings to historic lows.

Not long ago, progressive pundits on CNN and MSNBC declared the current indicted lawyer Michael Avenatti presidential material for his fabrications and lies that were used to smear Justice Brett Kavanaugh. Where does a network go after that?

It is not only “hard to imagine where universities go after peak progressivism”, or where the networks can “go after that”; it is impossible to see a destination for the Left itself, in America or anywhere else in the world.

Except to extinction.   

Revolution? 4

Is America in the throes of a revolution? Are we sliding unstoppably into totalitarian communism?

Angelo Codevilla writes at American Greatness:

Some conservatives, rejoicing that impeachment turned into yet another of #TheResistance’s political train wrecks and that President Trump is likely to be reelected by a bigger margin than in 2016, expect that a chastened ruling class will return to respecting the rest of us. They are mistaken.

Trump’s reelection, by itself, cannot protect us. The ruling class’s intolerance of the 2016 election’s results was intolerance of us.

Nor was their intolerance so much a choice as it was the expression of its growing sense of its own separate identity, of power and of entitlement to power. The halfhearted defenses with which the offensives of the ruling class have been met already advertise the fact that it need not and will not accept the outcome of any presidential election it does not win. Trump notwithstanding, this class will rule henceforth as it has in the past three years. So long as its hold on American institutions continues to grow, and they retain millions of clients, elections won’t really matter.

Our country is in a state of revolution, irreversibly, because society’s most influential people have retreated into moral autarchy, …

Autarchy, or autocracy, is rule by a dictator. Has any Democrat proclaimed a desire for a dictator, or to be a dictator? If so, we missed it. The Democrats want absolute power in their own hands, but have’t yet wished up a Stalin or a Mao. It’s highly likely that Bernie Sanders would like to be an American Stalin, but has he admitted it?

Besides which, there is not a single Democratic candidate for the presidency of the United States who could run a poll in Iowa, let alone the country. 

Moral autarchy? Not sure what that means. But okay, let’s accept the term in order to follow the writer’s argument.

… have seceded from America’s constitutional order, and because they browbeat their socio-political adversaries instead of trying to persuade them. Theirs is not a choice that can be reversed. It is a change in the character of millions of people.

Does character change? Does the character of a people – a nation – change? What characterizes any nation must by definition be what does not change about it. For a country to change its character it would have to have its population replaced by a different population – as is happening rapidly in Sweden, France, Spain, and Germany.  The Democrats seem to like the idea of America becoming more “Hispanic” than “Anglo”, but it hasn’t happened yet, and might never happen.

There has been a change in America over the last 70 years or so. It is not a change of character. In all their variety, Americans are recognizably the same as they were 100 years ago. What has changed in America are ideas about values and morals, about what matters and what doesn’t.

And that is what the article under discussion is really about.

The sooner conservatives realize that the Republic established between 1776 and 1789—the America we knew and loved—cannot return, the more fruitfully we will be able to manage the revolution’s clear and present challenges to ourselves. How are we to deal with a ruling class that insists on ruling—elections and generally applicable rules notwithstanding—because it regards us as lesser beings?

The resistance that reached its public peaks in the Brett Kavanaugh hearings and the impeachment imbroglio should have left no doubt about the socio-political arbitrariness that flows from the ruling class’s moral autarchy, about the socio-political power of the ruling class we’re forced to confront, or of its immediate threat to our freedom of speech.

Chief Justice John Roberts, presiding over the Senate’s impeachment trial, was as clear an example as any of that moral autarchy and its grip on institutions.

Pursuant to Senate rules, Senator Rand Paul sent a written question through Roberts to House Manager Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) regarding the extent of collaboration between Schiff’s staffer Sean Misko and his longtime fellow partisan, CIA officer Eric Ciaramella in starting the charges that led to impeachment. Roberts, having read the question to himself, declared: “The presiding officer declines to read the question as submitted.”

The chief justice of the United States, freedom of speech’s guardian-in-chief, gave no reason for declining to read Paul’s question. The question was relevant to the proceedings. It violated no laws, no regulations. The names of the two persons were known to every member of the House and Senate, as well as to everyone around the globe who had followed news reports over the previous months. But the Democratic Party had been campaigning to drive from public discussion that this impeachment stemmed from the partisan collaboration between a CIA officer and a Democratic staffer.

“Collaboration” is the polite term for it; “conspiracy” the more accurate one.

Accordingly, the mainstream media had informally but totally banned discussion of this fact, supremely relevant but supremely embarrassing to Schiff in particular and to Democrats in general. Now, Paul was asking Schiff officially to comment on the relationship. Schiff could have explained it, or refused to explain it. But Roberts saved him the embarrassment and trouble—and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) spared senators the problem of voting on a challenge to Roberts’s  ruling. The curtain of official concealment, what the Mafia calls the omertà, remained intact. Why no reason?

Just as no dog wags his tail without a reason, neither did Roberts wag his without reason. Neither the laws of the United States nor the rules of the Senate told the presiding officer to suppress the senator’s question. Why was Roberts pleased to please those he pleased and to displease those he displeased? In short, why did this impartial presiding officer act as a man partial to one side against the other?

This professional judge could hardly have been impressed by the ruling class’s chosen instrument, Adam Schiff, or by Schiff’s superior regard for legal procedure. Since Schiff’s prosecution featured hiding the identity of the original accuser—after promising to feature his testimony—and since it featured secret depositions, blocked any cross-examination of its own witnesses, and prevented the defense from calling any of their own, it would have been strange if Chief Justice Roberts’s bias was a professional one.

Is it possible that Roberts favored the substance of the ruling class claim that neither President Trump nor any of his defenders have any right to focus public attention on the Biden family’s use of public office to obtain money in exchange for influence? That, after all, is what Washington is largely about. Could Roberts also love corruption so much as to help conceal it? No.

Roberts’s professional and ethical instincts incline him the other way. Nevertheless, he sustained the ruling class’s arbitrariness. Whose side did he take? His dinner companions’ side? The media’s? His wife’s? Roberts’s behavior—contrary as it was to his profession, to his morals, and to his political provenance—shows how great is the ruling class’s centripetal force.

The sad but inescapable consequence of this force is that conservatives have no choice but to follow the partisan logic of revolution—fully conscious of the danger that partisanship can make us as ridiculously dishonest as Adam Schiff or CNN’s talking heads, into rank-pullers like John Roberts, and into profiteers as much as any member of the Biden family.

Do conservatives have no choice but to go along with “the revolution”, with the abandonment of the values that inspired the Constitution, with corruption as a matter of indisputable but unchangeable fact?

The writer then seems to change his mind. He suggests there is a choice:

And yet, revolution is war, the proximate objective of which is to hurt the other side until it loses the capacity and the will to do us harm. That means treating institutions and people from the standpoint of our own adversarial interest: controlling what we can either for our own use or for bargaining purposes, discrediting and abandoning what we cannot take from our enemies.

Opposing them by the means they choose, the weapons they use? That – so the writer suggests – is our best recourse?

Unlike our enemies, our ultimate objective is, as Lincoln said, “peace among ourselves and with all nations”. But what kind of peace we may get depends on the extent to which we may compel our enemies to leave us in peace. And for that, we must do unto them more and before they do unto us.

Which is true? Do we have no choice but to join “the revolution” – a change from a free open society of self-reliant individuals into a government-controlled, race and sex obsessed, doom prophesying, totally organized community? Or are we still in control of our destiny? And if we fight our revolutionary enemy, must it be with their weapons, or ours? On their terms, or ours?

We do not see that there has been a revolution – though the Obama administration tried to make one. We do not think the only way to save America from totalitarian one-party rule is by following the rules laid down by the Gramsci-Alinsky school of sedition and the Cloward-Piven blueprint for chaos. (See here and here and here and here.)

By great good luck we have President Trump leading us in another direction, showing us another way, prioritizing better (characteristic) values: freedom, individual enterprise, innovation, industry, competence, patriotism, strength, ambition, self-confidence, prosperity. For a few more years at least. During which the Left revolutionaries may, in the fury of their frustration, stamp themselves into the ground.

Cuba 1

If this video were seen by all Bernie Sanders enthusiasts, it might put them off socialism. No? Well, let’s say some of them? No? Okay, but maybe a few of them? No?

Posted under communism, Cuba, Socialism by Jillian Becker on Friday, February 7, 2020

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Vote Bernie Sanders for rope and chains 8

Not hope and change. Or if change, not for what we would call the better.

The Bernie Sanders campaign is, however, excited by the prospect of being able to inflict misery on persons so wicked as to have earned a lot of money, or to vote for Donald Trump; and violence on any who oppose Comrade Bernie for the Democrats’ presidential candidacy.

Breitbart reports:

An undercover video published by Project Veritas … shows a field organizer for Sen. Bernie Sanders’ 2020 campaign saying Soviet gulags were actually a positive phenomenon, suggesting that some similar program could re-educate Trump supporters and billionaires.

The video begins with a Project Veritas journalist asking an individual identified as Sanders organizer Kyle Jurek if “MAGA people” could be re-educated if Sanders wins the White House. “We gotta try,” Jurek replies. …

In another part of the video, Jurek is seen discussing Soviet Union dictator Joseph Stalin’s use of gulags, where he claims that the CIA was overly critical of them. “People were actually paid a living wage in the gulags. They have conjugal visits in gulags. Gulags were meant for re-education,” he says.

Jurek is then seen suggesting that the most effective way to re-educate the billionaire class is to order them to “break rocks for 12 hours a day”.

Jurek uses “the f word” a lot. We substitute stars:

“The greatest way to break a ******* billionaire of their privilege and their idea that they’re superior, go and break rocks for 12 hours a day. You’re now a working class person, and you’re going to ******* learn what that means, right?”

The video also shows Jurek warning that Milwaukee, host of this year’s Democratic National Convention, will “burn” if Sanders fails to win the party’s nomination. “If Bernie doesn’t get the nomination or it goes to a second round at the DNC convention, ******* Milwaukee will burn,” says Jurek. “It’ll start in Milwaukee and then when the police push back on that, other sites will ******* explode.”

The footage concludes with Jurek issuing the chilling prediction that Milwaukee could see riots akin to the 1968 convention in Chicago, where left-wing activists engaged in violent riots in the streets.

“Be ready to be in Milwaukee for the DNC convention. We’re going to make 1968 look like a *******girl’s scout ******* cookout,” warns the Sanders field organizer. “The cops are going to be the ones ******* beaten in Milwaukee.”

This cussing sadist Jurek will not have read, would not read, probably does not know of the existence of Alexander Solzhenitsyn’s book The Gulag Archipelago 1918-1956: an Experiment in Literary Investigation. We suspect that even if he did read it, it would not make him change his mind about condemning people to gulags. But for those less unshakable in their admiration for Communism, less inspired by the Russian practice of it, here’s a small taste* of what the book has to teach readers and writers in the West:

How to describe the perturbation of a human soul placed in a cell filled to twenty times its capacity and with no latrine bucket? The texture of this life [in the Gulag] is bound to be quite unknown to Western writers; they wouldn’t conceive of the solution – to urinate in your canvas hood or your boot. Ah, with what psychological twists and turns Western writers could enrich their literature if they only knew about the scheme of things in that Minusinsk Prison: there was only one food bowl for every four slave prisoners; and one mug of drinking water per day. And it could happen that one of the four sharers contrived to use the vessel allotted to him and three others to relieve his internal pressure and then refuse to allow  his daily water ration to wash it out. What a conflict! What a clash of four personalities! What nuances! And I am not joking. That is when the rock bottom of a human being is revealed. Months in such a cell and a human being, though he may escape being shot under Yezhov and may even be rehabilitated under Khrushchev, will live in ruined health for the rest of his life. …

In Minusinsk prison in 194-, after the prisoners hadn’t been taken into the fresh air for a whole year, they had forgotten to walk, to breathe, to look at the light. And then they took then out, put them in formation, and herded them the fifteen miles to Abakan on foot. About a dozen of them died along the way. And no one is ever going to write a great novel about it, not even one chapter: if you live in a graveyard, you can’t weep for everyone.

Like the good communists who ran the gulags, this Jurek – and Bernie Sanders himself who honeymooned in the Communist paradise that Solzhenitsyn describes – would no doubt be happy to say to the billionaires and Trump voters they would condemn to imprisonment:

“In the prison camp, nothing belongs to you. Here in camp we have communism. Forward march!”

Upon which Solzhenitsyn comments:

And if it was “communism” then what was there to object to? Communism, after all, is what they had dedicated their lives to.

Solzhenitsyn himself did actually write a  great novel about life in a gulag prison. It is called One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich. We advise billionaires who intend to vote for Bernie Sanders – yes, you lot in Silicon Valley – to read it so you can be prepared for what might be in store for you.

Here is a video showing photographs of life in the Soviet gulag prisons. Also watch the video that follows it, continuing with the same subject.

 

 

The founder of Project Veritas, James O’Keefe, has released the footage of the interview with Kyle Jurek on Tuesday January 14, 2020, and says that several more videos will follow “as part of the group’s ‘Expose2020’ campaign”.

 

*I have used the translation by Thomas P. Whitney (Collins and Harvill Press, London] as a basis for my own phrasing in part. The quotations come from pages 541-542 and page 584. The emphasis is in the original – ed.

Posted under communism, Soviet Union, United States by Jillian Becker on Tuesday, January 14, 2020

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The kinky man in the high castle 1

The Superpimp, the pleasure-host of the world’s globalist elite, of the nomenklatura of all the nations, of the Whole World Community Organizers, of the priests of catastrophic climate change, was Jeffrey Epstein.

Cliff Kincaid explains in some detail at Canada Free Press:

The late billionaire Jeffrey Epstein’s pedophilia is what has interested the media. But his own blog, which is still active even after his death, suggests what he and his fellow elites were really interested in. He called it “cutting edge science”. It is how the global elites intend to manage our lives. They already claim credit for “rewriting our global culture”.

“Jeffrey Epstein is a former member of the Mind, Brain and Behavior Committee at Harvard, the Trilateral Commission, the Council on Foreign Relations, the New York Academy of Science and a former Rockefeller University Board Member,” his website proclaimed. “Mr. Epstein is also an active member of the Edge Organization.”

You can’t get higher-up than Epstein. This is the crème de la crème of the American establishment. But as Patrick Wood, Editor of Technocracy News & Trends, notes, “He had no visible or logical means of creating wealth, although he spent a fortune on various pet projects.”

Wood comments that Epstein was definitely NOT like “the typical member” of the Trilateral Commission (TC) or Council on Foreign Relations (CFR). “He had no compelling outward qualifications as far as I can tell, but if you think about the TC and CFR as being potentially useful for nefarious purposes, then Epstein was the blackmailer and his secret and real profession was sex trafficking and pedophilia,” Wood adds, “It has been alleged that every room in his mansions had hidden cameras that filmed everything and everyone, and that the videos taken were stored offsite in a still-undisclosed location. These will never be released because they implicate so many of the global elite.”

Actually, there have been no published examples of Epstein having sexual relations with children. With young women who were under the age of consent in most US states, yes, and that is inaccurately called “pedophilia”. And sure the girls were young enough to be considered victims. But they were old enough to know what they were doing and have their own reasons for doing it. Such as, to make money. A respectable motive in itself.

So it could be argued that his “pedophilia” is not the worst thing about the man. Then in what did his worst villainy lie? Was it that he stole his starter millions (which Kincaid does not mention)?

Or was it simply that he kept and presided over Concupiscence Castlethe Grand Central Brothel – where Our Betters could meet and feast and copulate with young whores and plot to turn the whole world into China, ruled by them? Did all the Great and the Powerful fear the exposure of what Epstein knew about them? Did the Superpimp live high, as Kincaid suggests, on blackmail?

These are serious concerns, and there is no guilt by association. But Epstein’s mysterious death, at this juncture in history, is extremely significant. Blaming two federal prison guards for his “suicide” cannot be accepted at face value. …

A quick look into one of Epstein’s affiliated groups, the Edge organization, reveals a “Billionaires’ Dinner” with photos of Jeff Bezos, owner of Amazon and the Washington Post; Jeffrey Epstein; and many others. “Guests have included the leading third culture intellectuals of our time, dining and conversing with the founders of Amazon, AOL, eBay, Facebook, Google, Microsoft, PayPal, Space X, Skype, Twitter,” says the website. “It is a remarkable gathering of outstanding minds—the people that are rewriting our global culture.”

This new global order is based on Scientism, a philosophy attractive to the global elites which holds that a small group of powerful people will manage the future through technocracy. Some of these people believe in “transhumanism,” the use of science and technology to enhance human mental and physical characteristics, creating a virtual super-race of humans.

Epstein, for example, “planned on using his own semen to impregnate the chosen ones and thus improve the human race,” notes Wood. “Epstein also planned to cryonically freeze his head and his penis, so that future science could bring him back to life to live forever.”

That organ must have served him well. Reliably. He wouldn’t want to risk having an untested substitute.

In this way, Epstein believed that he would, personally, be resurrected and experience a form of eternal life.

While this kind of approach sounds fantastic, the fact is that Epstein, a college dropout, was highly regarded by such elite organizations such as the Trilateral Commission and Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) and Harvard University.  As reported by the Harvard Crimson, “He cultivated cozy friendships with top Harvard administrators including a former University president” and pledged a $30 million donation to Harvard to fund the University’s Program for Evolutionary Dynamics. “Our work is about understanding the past, managing the present, and helping to build the future,” it says.

Epstein was accepted into the “Chairman’s Circle” of the CFR’s top donors but the group’s president, Richard Haass, has tried to distance himself from Epstein after his death. However, the Trilateral Commission, whose membership is by invitation only, has not said anything publicly about his involvement with the organization.

Research into the agenda of these organizations is as important as finding out those who were rubbing elbows (or other body parts) with Epstein or the young girls in his harem.  How could someone with enormous wealth, obtained through mysterious circumstances, reach the pinnacle of power. Was it because of his keen intellect?   

The Trilateral Commission’s goal has always been the “deeper integration and greater globalization” of the world’s economies but asserts that such a process has been jeopardized by “populism and nationalism”.

It has! And that’s very good news. We have President Trump to thank for it.

That’s a reference to the election of Donald J. Trump as U.S. President and the Brexit process of leaving the European Union in Britain. In the words of the Trilateral Commission, the future of humanity is threatened.

By which the Trilateral Commission means that its plan, to bring humanity under world Communist government by Those Who Know Best, is threatened.

The Trilateral Commission Summer 2019 report, Democracies Under Stress, reflects the current political thinking of the global elite who invited Epstein  to join their “prestigious” organizations and attend their “dinners”. It states, “All of this [stress] is occurring at a time when Beijing is offering the world what many see as a viable alternative to democracy.”

The “many” is not defined. But speaking for themselves, in terms of the “many,” these global elites apparently see the U.S. experiment in constitutional self-government as less efficient than China’s rule by the communist elite. 

This report from the Trilateral Commission features two pictures of former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, a prominent member of the North American Group. One shows Kissinger with Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev, who fooled the West with Glasnost and Perestroika while pursuing the goal of world communism with the support of “socialists” and environmentalists in the West. Former top Jimmy Carter adviser Zbigniew Brzezinski also “played an important role in the formation” of the Trilateral Commission and served as its first director from 1973 to 1976. By the way, his daughter is Mika Brzezinski, a host on the Trump-hating MSNBC cable channel. She is married to co-host Joe Scarborough. Both are members of the CFR.

Media organizations represented by Trilateral Commission members include NBC News, Bloomberg, the Washington Post, Time Magazine, CNN, the Wall Street Journal, and the New York Times. Clearly, they, too, play a major role in shaping the culture. 

What, no George Soros? He too is a TC member.

The heavy media presence in the organization explains why commission meetings and reports are not examined critically or even covered. Hence, we can assume one is invited to join such an organization, “by invitation only,” and stay involved, based on favorable coverage, or non-coverage, of what this organization actually does. That virtually guarantees that “whistleblowers” will never come forward with inside information about their plans.

But Patrick Wood, who co-authored the book, Trilaterals Over Washington, has watched the activities of the organization for many years and says there is no doubt that China has always been the key to the plans of the TC. He notes that Kissinger started the relationship with China under President Nixon and then Brzezinski completed most of the communist country’s integration into the global economy under President Carter. The goal has been to develop an elaborate scheme of social engineering, a technocracy, which will be used to bring into being an anticipated new worldwide utopian system.

*

A note about the Trilateral Commission’s aims:

Cliff Kincaid’s assertion that a “worldwide utopian system” is the ultimate goal of the Trilateral Commission seems to be denied by the Commission itself in Democracies Under Stress. There are such assertions as: “ A shift in the mindset of traditional elites [is needed] from lamenting the decline of democracy to taking action to defend it”; “[The TC can give] inspiration and reassurance to those who have traditionally looked to the United States and its allies as democratic models by underscoring the continued commitment of its member states to democracy, the rule of law, and free and open markets”.

And then there is this:

The democracies of North America, Europe, and Asia must be revitalized in order to ensure that they—not the authoritarian regimes gaining confidence and establishing themselves more firmly on the global stage [by which they mean chiefly the Trump administration] – are the ones that offer workable solutions to the dilemmas of our rapidly changing world [they mean chiefly China]. Unlike at other times, many of the governments of the advanced democracies—the original architects of the international system underpinning decades of relative peace and prosperity [?] —are no longer the best safeguards of their own democratic workings, nor ardent advocates of the ability of democracies to tackle global ills collectively. The Trilateral Commission is well-poised to play a vital role in this revitalization effort, and seeks to once again become an analytical home for assessing the stresses on the advanced democracies, offering solutions for dealing with them, and catalyzing cooperation among these countries on global economic, political, and security matters.

Ah, now! Plainly to the undeceived reader’s eye, the TC has one chief purpose, and it stresses that purpose throughout the article. It is writ so large that it could easily be missed. Its reason for existence is to advance internationalism of a kind and in a manner that the UN was not designed and could not be used to achieve: the establishment of unchallengeable central global power by a cabal of the like-minded elite. One hint that the plan involves redistribution of wealth – despite the claimed support for free markets – lies in the recurring phrase “climate change”.

Examples:

Prospects for … adequately addressing climate change are slim as long as advanced democracies are compromised by internal divisions and governed by institutions that are no longer well-suited to the realities of the day.

The Commission has three groups: one for North America, one for Europe, and one for Asia (expanded … to include South Korea, Singapore, India, Indonesia, Australia, China and others)… [T]he trilateral structure is essential to catalyze cooperation to meet pressing global problems—from nuclear proliferation to climate change to pandemics to growing protectionism.

“Climate change” is a chosen problem because it seems obviously to need an international solution. “Advanced democracies” cannot deal with it because of clashes of policy and opinion  which make for changing governments (so that nationalist and populist governments can and do get elected), and their institutions (such as multiple competing parties and branches of government with separated powers) are “no longer well suited to the realities of the day”.

The UN has tried and failed to scare the nations into yielding up autonomy in the interest of saving the planet from freezing or burning or becoming a globe of salt water, but these saviors of democracy … of “democracy”, Communist style, not of the separate autonomous genuine democracies … could have better luck, they hope, in bringing off the trick without rousing suspicion of the real  motive feebly disguised in ambiguity.

Veterans Day 2019 1

The First World War, which ended 101 years ago today, was an utterly unnecessary war. It was started for no better reason than to satisfy the vanity of kings.

According to War History Online:

There were around 8 million Frenchmen fighting, 13 million Germans, 9 million Austro-Hungarian men, 9 million British soldiers, 18 million Russians, 6 million Italians and 4 million from the United States.

Here’s the “official” break down [of dead and injured in the engaged armies]:

France: 1.4 million dead, 4.2 million injured.

Germany: 1.8 million dead, 4.2 million injured.

Austria-Hungary: 1.4 million dead, 3.6 million injured.

Russia: 1.8 million dead, 5 million injured.

Britain and British Empire: 900,000 dead, 2 million injured.

Italy: 600,000 dead, 1 million injured.

Serbia suffered the greatest losses [proportionately] to their military. Nearly three quarters of their soldiers were either killed (130,000) or wounded (135,000).

The battles of Verdun and the Somme in 1916 left 770,000 and 1.2 million (respectively) missing, wounded or dead from both sides.

Some of the most devastating losses were caused in the beginning weeks of the world war. In one day, August 22, 1914, nearly 27,000 French soldiers were killed. That day remains the deadliest day in France’s history in regards to military men killed.

The total number of military and civilian casualties in World War I: about 40 million.

It was a vast blood-letting that started the ever accelerating decline of Western civilization.

It destroyed a great part of a whole generation of men.

It facilitated the turning of Russia into a Communist torture-chamber and graveyard, and source of sepsis for the whole world, still spreading.

It led causally to the Second World War, which the allies had necessarily to fight, and in which there were even greater numbers of dead and injured.

Yesterday Queen Elizabeth wept as the customary wreaths were laid at the foot of the cenotaph in memory of the men and women killed in the two world wars.

Today in America we honor all those who have served and serve now in the US military.

It was because America came to the aid of Europe twice in the last century, that liberty was preserved for our world. Whether it will survive much longer remains to be seen. Half the voters of America seem to want to live under the tyranny that was militarily defeated in the last century.

We do well to remember, as Europeans mourn their heroes and Americans honor theirs, how precious and rare is the liberty they fought for.

Posted under Austria, Britain, communism, Europe, France, Germany, Hungary, Italy, liberty, nazism, Russia, Soviet Union, United Kingdom, United States, War by Jillian Becker on Monday, November 11, 2019

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Global citizenship, world government 4

When the time comes – is it not coming? – to ask, “Who killed Western civilization?” there will be certain names to speak; names of a few individuals who must be held more responsible than any others.

We quote from an article by Bruce Bawer in the October 2019 issue of Commentary. (The article rewards reading in full). 

On September 24, Donald Trump told the United Nations General Assembly, “The future does not belong to the globalists. The future belongs to the patriots.” Four days later, as if in a rebuke to his assertion, the Great Lawn in New York’s Central Park was the site of the “Global Citizen Festival”.  This event brought together “top artists, world leaders, and everyday activists to take action” (in the words of its website) and offered free tickets to “Global Citizens who take a series of actions to create lasting change around the world”.  Those “actions” included writing tweets and signing petitions affirming their dedication to “changing the world”. …

The Global Citizen Festival was organized by a group called Global Citizen in partnership with firms such as Johnson & Johnson, Proctor & Gamble, and Cisco Technologies. Rarely have so many heavyweight corporations described their activities in such benign language: Verizon stated on the event’s website that “we focus our business and resources to uplift people and protect the planet”. Who knew?

Covering the festival live, MSNBC hosts kept insisting—between interviews with Democratic politicians and recitation of DNC talking points—that it was “not about politics”. Hurricane Sandy, Central American drought, and the fall of Venezuela, we were informed, were all caused by climate change. … Politicians from Norway, Barbados, and elsewhere waved their globalist credentials, while America’s withdrawal from the Paris accords was cited as a sin against globalism and thus against humanity itself. …

In the past decade, the very concept of citizenship has become not only passé but déclassé. We should all be global citizens. …

Ironically enough, the contemporary enthusiasm for global citizenship has its roots in the historical moment that marked the triumph of modern national identity and pride—namely, the World War II victory of free countries (plus the Soviet Union) over their unfree enemies. Citizens of small, conquered nations resisted oppression and, in many cases, gave their lives out of sheer patriotism and love of liberty. As Allied tanks rolled into one liberated town after another, people waved flags that had been hidden away during the occupation. Germany and Japan had sought to create empires that erased national borders and turned free citizens into subjects of tyranny; brave patriots destroyed that dream and restored their homelands’ sovereignty and freedom.

And yet a major consequence of this victory was the establishment of an organization, the United Nations. Its founding rhetoric, like that of Nazi Germany and Imperial Japan, was all about the erasure of borders, even as it hoisted its own baby-blue flag alongside those of its members.

On December 10, 1948, the UN adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. …

Among the UN “rights” are:  the right to food, clothing, medical care, social services, unemployment and disability benefits, child care, and free education. 

Whose duty is it to supply all those goodies? And to what power will those appeal whose “rights” of this sort are violated? 

The chief force behind the Declaration was Eleanor Roosevelt, the chair of the UN’s Human Rights Commission. In a 1945 newspaper column, she had had some interesting things to say about patriotism and what we would now call globalism. “Willy-nilly,” she wrote, “everyone [sic] of us cares more for his own country than for any other. That is human nature. We love the bit of land where we have grown to maturity and known the joys and sorrows of life. The time has come however when we must recognize that our mutual [sic] devotion to our own land must never blind us to the good of all lands and of all peoples.”

So Eleanor Roosevelt, sentimental and manifestly unable to think clearly, was a source of our civilization’s rot.

“Willy-nilly”? “Bit of land”? Didn’t America deserve better than that from its longtime first lady? Didn’t America’s armed forces, who had fought valiantly for their own “bit of land”? One part of Mrs. Roosevelt’s testimony was ambiguous. When she referred to “the good of all lands and of all peoples”, did she mean that Americans should care about what’s best for other peoples? Or was she saying that all lands and peoples are good? She couldn’t possibly be saying that, could she? Hadn’t the Holocaust just proven otherwise? It’s striking to recognize that Mrs. Roosevelt wrote this only months after the bloody end of the crusade to restore freedom to Western Europe—and at a time when our erstwhile ally Joseph Stalin’s actions in Eastern Europe were underscoring precisely how evil our fellow man could be, and just how precious a gift to the world the United States was. …

Another would-be global citizen was Wendell Willkie, who had challenged FDR for the presidency in 1940. In 1943, Willkie published One World, an account of a round-the-world trip he had made and a plea for the nations of that world to accept a single international order. Willkie wanted more than just a UN: he wanted world government, based on the Atlantic Charter. It is said that his book was the biggest non-fiction bestseller in history up to that time, inspiring an international One World movement to which both Albert Einstein and Mahatma Gandhi belonged.

Gandhi, yes, he would. Einstein’s political opinions are irrelevant.

Like Eleanor Roosevelt, Willkie was determined to build a new world founded on specifically American notions of rights and freedoms. Like Mrs. Roosevelt, too, he was convinced that postwar feelings of goodwill toward the U.S. by other governments would lead them to embrace those notions. On his world trip, wrote Willkie, he had discovered that foreigners knew that America had no desire for conquest, and that the U.S. therefore enjoyed their respect and trust—a respect and trust, he argued, that America must use “to unify the peoples of the earth in the human quest for freedom and justice.”

Needless to say, the world didn’t end up with Willkie’s One World. But it got the UN—where, from the outset, there was more talk of peace than of freedom and where the differences between the West and the Soviet bloc were routinely glossed over in order to present a façade of international comity.

Behind the Iron Curtain, captive peoples weren’t citizens, global or otherwise, but prisoners. Yet in the West, the UN’s language of what we now call global citizenship started to take hold, and the UN began to be an object of widespread, although hardly universal, veneration.

In reality, the UN may be a massive and inert bureaucratic kleptocracy yoked to a debating society, most of whose member states are unfree or partly free; but people in the free world who grow starry-eyed at the thought of global citizenship view it as somehow magically exceeding, in moral terms, the sum of its parts.

Sentimentality began the rot and keeps it going.

You can’t discuss the UN and global citizenship without mentioning Maurice Strong.

Christopher Booker wrote in the Telegraph in December 2015:

A very odd thing happened last weekend. The death was announced of the man who, in the past 40 years, has arguably been more influential on global politics than any other single individual. Yet the world scarcely noticed.

What Strong, an extremely rich Canadian businessman, did—almost single-handedly—was to create, out of the blue, the global-warming panic that is now a cornerstone of left-wing ideology.

Although he never was secretary-general of the UN, Strong wielded massive power within that organization and innumerable other international bodies, serving, for instance, as a director of the World Economic Forum and as a senior adviser to the president of the World Bank. He also played pivotal roles in a long list of programs and commissions that were nominally dedicated to the environment—among them the UN Environmental Programme and World Resources Institute, the Earth Charter Commission, and the UN’s World Commission on Environment and Development.

But although he was nicknamed “Godfather of Global Warming”, Strong didn’t really care about climate. His real objective was to transform the UN into a world government—a permanent, unelected politburo composed of elders such as himself.

At first, indeed, climate played no role in his plans. To fund the all-powerful UN of his dreams, in 1995 he proposed a 0.5 percent tax on every financial transaction on earth—a scheme that would have netted $1.5 trillion annually, approximately the entire annual gross income of the United States at the time. When the Security Council vetoed this move, Strong tried to eliminate the Security Council. The failure of such stratagems led Strong to focus increasingly on climate.

By promoting the idea that the planet was in existential peril, he was able to argue that a looming disaster on the scale he predicted could be solved only by vesting in the UN an unprecedented degree of authority over the lives of absolutely everyone on earth.

To this end, Strong concocted Agenda 21. Formulated at the 1992 UN Earth Summit (or Rio Conference), of which he served as secretary-general, Agenda 21 proposed a transfer of power from nation-states to the UN.

Strong opined:

It is simply not feasible for sovereignty to be exercised unilaterally by individual nation states. The global community must be assured of global environmental security.

What kind of regime did Strong wish to establish? Suffice it to say that he disdained the U.S. but admired Communist China, where he maintained a flat—to which, incidentally, he relocated after being implicated in the UN “oil for food” scandal in 2005. Another one of the many financial scandals in which he was implicated (but for which he repeatedly managed to get himself off the hook) involved funneling massive sums to North Korea, of whose regime he was also fond.

The intention from the beginning of the climate hoax was to use it as a pretext for imposing world communist government.

After the UN came the European Union. As a free-trade zone gradually morphed into a would-be superstate, the EU’s supposed raison d’être was that nationalism had almost destroyed Europe in World War II. But this was wrong. Europe had been torn apart because of two totalitarian ideologies, one based on racial identity and the other on a utopian universalist vision. Communism’s end goal was, indeed, nothing more or less than a kind of global citizenship under which everyone except for a handful of elites would be equally controlled, spied on, and oppressed.

The concept of global citizenship now pervades our politics.

During her 2016 campaign, Hillary Clinton envisioned a Western hemisphere, and ultimately a world, without borders.

Barack Obama, in reply to a question about American exceptionalism, said that, yes, he saw America as exceptional, but that people in other countries, too, saw their countries as exceptional. The last sentence of his Nobel Peace Prize citation contained the word “global” not once but twice: “The Committee endorses Obama’s appeal that ‘Now is the time for all of us to take our share of responsibility for a global response to global challenges’.” What U.S. president had ever been more global? A Kenyan father, an Indonesian boyhood: his bestselling autobiography conveyed his affection for both of those countries; it was the U.S. for which his feelings were ambivalent. …

Global citizenship is also big at America’s most prestigious colleges. …

The author proceeds to give many examples of universities pushing the idea of globalism hard on their students.

Decades ago, American curricula included a subject called “civics”. Students learned about responsible citizenship—understanding how government worked, knowing one’s constitutional rights, following current affairs, and voting intelligently in elections. Describing these courses was not problematic; students weren’t “invited” or “challenged” to “figure out” what citizenship means. They were told. They were given specifics. They experienced something known as education. Alas, those civics courses have long since disappeared. The contemplation of global citizenship has filled that vacuum. Its apparent purpose is to undo any sense of responsible citizenship that a young person might have acquired and to replace it with a higher loyalty. …

A “higher loyalty”?  To what?

Global citizenship is a luxury of those who’ve reaped rewards earned by the blood of patriots. Global citizens pretend to possess, or sincerely think they possess, a loyalty that transcends borders. It sounds pretty. But it’s not. By the same token, to some ears a straightforward declaration of patriotism can sound exclusionary, bigoted, racist. It isn’t. To assert a national identity is to make a moral statement and to take on a responsibility. To call yourself a global citizen is to do the equivalent of wearing a peace button—you’re making a meaningless statement because you think it makes you look virtuous. …

To be American is to partake in the benefits that flow from American freedom, power, wealth, and world leadership. Very few Americans who call themselves global citizens ever actually back up their proclamation by relinquishing any of these benefits … No, they gladly embrace the benefits of being an American; they’re just too virtuous, in their minds, to embrace the label itself. They’re like young people living off a generous trust fund while sporting an “Eat the Rich” button.

One way of looking at the aftermath of 9/11 is to recognize that many Americans who were simply unable (for very long, anyhow) to dedicate themselves to country were thrust by that jihadist assault into the arms of the only alternative they could imagine—namely, global citizenship. Instead of being usefully dedicated to the liberty and security of their own country in a time of grave threat, they have bailed on America and have found, in global citizenship, a noble-sounding illusion of freedom from patriotic obligation.

And in fact they are floating free, hovering above the earthly struggle between good and evil and refusing to take sides—and, moreover, presenting this hands-off attitude as a mark not of cowardice but of cultural sophistication and moral superiority.

To a large extent, the project of global citizenship is about trying to replace the concrete with the abstract, about exchanging the real for the idealistic. It’s a matter of trying to talk Americans into rejecting the pragmatic and industrious patriotism that, yes, made America great, and pushing on them, instead, yet another pernicious utopian ideology of the sort that almost destroyed Europe in the 20th century.

It’s a matter of endlessly talking up ideas for radical change on every level of society—from ecological measures that would bring down the world economy to a neurotic obsessiveness with hierarchies of group identity that threatens to destroy America’s social fabric—instead of implementing practical reforms that enjoy popular support and would improve everyone’s life.

It’s a matter of trying to persuade ordinary citizens, in the name of some higher good—whether world peace or world health or protection of the planet’s environment—to relinquish their freedom and obey a small technocratic elite.

In the final analysis, global citizenship is a dangerous dream, a threat to individual liberty, and an assault on American sovereignty—a menace not only to Americans but to all humanity, and one that should therefore be rejected unambiguously by all men and women of goodwill and at least a modicum of common sense.

“Should” be rejected, yes, but will it be? All the Democratic candidates for the presidential election in November 2020 call for “open borders” – the first requisite for One World government. If the electorate rejects the “dangerous dream of global citizenship” by not voting the Democrats into power, the rot may be stopped and our civilization may be saved. It will be a decisive election. It will be a decisive battle in “the earthly struggle between good and evil”.

 

PS: Essentially, for the saving of civilization,

the UN must be destroyed!

Russia 1

An illuminating article. For us, lifelong students of Communism and the modern history of Russia, almost as full of surprises as of affirmations.

Angelo M. Codevilla writes at CRB:

What 21st-century Russia is in itself, to its neighbors, and to America flows from the fact it is no longer the Soviet Union. As the red flag came down from the Kremlin on Christmas Day 1991, Russian president Boris Yeltsin, when asked what he thought of Communism, nearly wept as he replied: “I wish it had been tried somewhere else.” Vladimir Putin, who famously said that the USSR’s collapse had been a tragedy, nevertheless shares the Russian people’s consensus that their country was Communism’s first and foremost victim, and that no one knows how long it may take to live down its dysfunctions. To its neighbors, this Russia is a rebudding tsarist empire. To Americans, it is a major adversary despite the lack of clashing geopolitical interests.

After Communism

The Revolution of 1917 was possible because socialists, in Russia and throughout the Western world, believed that “present-day society”, as Karl Marx put it, is a jumble of “contradictions”, which could be resolved only by tearing down the pillars of the house. Once that was done, history would end: man and woman, farmer and industrial worker, producer and consumer, intellectual and mechanic—heretofore at odds—would live harmoniously, freely, and prosperously ever after.

Because they really believed in this utopian dream, the socialists gave absolute power to Lenin and Stalin’s Communist Party to wreck and reorganize—to break eggs in order to make a delicious omelette. But Communism, while retaining some of Marxism’s antinomian features (e.g., war on the family and on religion), became in practice almost exclusively a justification for the party’s absolute rule. For example, the economic system adopted by the Soviet Union and by other Communist regimes owed precisely zero to Marx, but was a finely tuned instrument for keeping the party in control of wealth.

The Leninist party is gone forever in Russia because, decades after its leaders stopped believing in Marxism, and after Leonid Brezhnev had freed them from the Stalinist incubus that had kept them loyal to the center, they had learned to make the party into a racket. That, and the residual antinomian features, made Russia into a kakotopia. Russian men learned to intrigue and drink on the job rather than work. Shunning responsibility for women and children, they turned Russian society into a matriarchy, held together by grandmothers. In a thoroughly bureaucratized system, each holder of a bit of authority used it to inconvenience the others. Forcing people to tell each other things that both knew not to be true—recall that “politically correct” is a Communist expression—engendered cynicism and disrespect for truth. The endless anti-religion campaigns cut the people off from one moral system and failed to inculcate another. Alcohol drowned unhappiness, life expectancies declined, and fewer Russians were born.

Religious morality? Communism not a religious morality? Not the same religious morality in certain vital respects? All red capes waving at us bulls!  But for the sake of what’s to come, we’ll only stand and paw the ground – and give a snort or two.

The Russian people rejected Communism in the only ways that powerless people can—by passivity, by turning to anything foreign to authority, and by cynicism. Nothing being more foreign to Communism than Christianity, Russians started wearing crosses, knowing that the regime frowned on this feature of the Russia that had pre-existed Communism, and would survive it.

A louder snort. But on:

No sooner had the USSR died than Russia restored the name Saint Petersburg to Peter the Great’s “window on the West”. Even under Soviet rule, Russians had gone out of their way to outdo the West in Western cultural matters—“nekulturny” (uncultured!) was, and remains, a heavy insult in Russia. Moscow let countless priorities languish as it rebuilt in record time its massive Christ the Savior cathedral to original specifications. As the Russian Orthodox church resumed its place as a pillar of the Russia that had been Christianity’s bastion against the Mongol horde as well as against the Muslim Ottomans, golden domes soon shone throughout the land. Whatever anyone might think of the Russian Orthodox church, it anchors the country to its Christian roots.

Few Americans understood Vladimir Putin’s rise to power at the close of the 20th century as the reassertion of a bankrupt, humiliated, resentful people looking to make Russia great again. Since then, Putin has rebuilt the Russian state into a major European power with worldwide influence. Poverty and a resource-based economy notwithstanding, it is on a sounder financial basis than any Western country. Corruption is within historical limits. The leadership is appreciated by the vast majority, whose national pride and solidarity dwarf those of Western publics. Nearly all Russians approve strongly of its absorption of Crimea. Russia effectively controls Ukraine’s eastern end, and has exposed the West’s incapacity to interfere militarily in the former Soviet empire. In the Middle East, Russia is now the dominant force.

In sum, the Russian bear licks its deep wounds as it growls behind fearsome defenses.

The Neighborhood

Russia’s Westernism is neither imitation nor love of the West. It is the assertion that Russia is an indispensable part of it. The Russians saved Europe from Napoleon, and from Hitler, too. That they did the latter tyrannically, as Soviets, does not, in their minds, disqualify them from their rightful place in Europe, or justify Europeans, much less Americans, trying to limit Russia’s rightful stature. Today’s Russian rulers are not gentler or nicer than the emperor who shook off the Mongol yoke—who wasn’t known as Ivan the Nice Guy. Like their forebears they are calculating Russia’s stature in terms of the limits—primarily in Europe—set by their own present power as well as by that of their immediate neighbors.

Russian writing on international affairs focuses exclusively on the country’s role as a member of the European system. By the 2030s, if not sooner, the Russian government will have filled such territory, and established such influence, as befit its own people’s and its neighbors’ realities, and will be occupied with keeping it. More than most, Putin is painfully aware of Russia’s limits. Its declining population is less than half of America’s and a tenth of China’s. Despite efforts to boost natality, its demography is likely to recover only slowly. Nor is its culture friendly to the sort of entrepreneurship, trust, and cooperation that produces widespread wealth. What, then, are Putin’s—or any Russian leader’s—national and international objectives?

As always, Ukraine is of prime interest to Russia because it is the crux of internal and external affairs. With Ukraine, Russia is potentially a world power. Without it, it is less, at best. But Putin’s pressures, disruptions, and meddlings have shown him how limited Russia’s reach into Ukraine is, and is sure to remain. Hence, Russia’s conquest of Ukraine east of the Don River signifies much less the acquisition of a base for further conquest than the achievement of modern Russia’s natural territorial limit in Europe. The 20th century’s events forever severed Ukraine and the Baltic states from Russia; even Belarus has become less compatible with it. Modern Russia is recognizing its independence, even as the Soviet Union at the height of its power effectively recognized Finland’s. As the Russian Federation’s demographic weight shifts southeastward—and Islamism continues to gain favor there—the Russian government will have to consider whether to shift its efforts from keeping the Muslim regions within the federation to expelling and building fences against them.

As the decades pass, post-Soviet Russia will have to work harder and harder to cut the sort of figure in Europe that it did under the tsars. That figure’s size is the issue. The Russian empire’s size has varied over the centuries according to the ratios between its and its neighbors’ national vigor and power. In the past, Poland, Sweden, Turkey, the Hanseatic powers, Germany, all have shrunken or swollen Russia. Borders and spheres of influence have varied. There is no reason why this should not be so in the future. Russia will neither invade Europe nor dominate it politically because its people lack the political will, and its state the capacity, to do either. During Soviet times, this will and this capacity were the product of the national and international Communist Party apparatus, now gone forever.

A glance back at this gargantuan human structure reminds us of how grateful we should be that it now belongs to history. The Communist faction that resulted from the 1918 split in the international socialist movement—like the rump socialist faction that ended up governing Europe after 1945, but unlike the fascist one—already intended to conquer the world. (Fascism, Mussolini’s invention, recalled some of ancient Rome’s peculiar institutions and symbols—the fasces was the bundle of punishing rods carried by the consuls’ lictors—and added governing Italy through business-labor-government councils. It was not for export.) Communists worldwide came under the firm control of the Soviet Party’s international division run by formidable persons like Andrei Zhdanov and Boris Ponomarev, disposing of virtually unlimited budgets and, after 1929, of the services of countless “front organizations.” These, the party’s hands and feet and its pride and joy, reached out to every imaginable category of persons: union members, lawyers, teachers, journalists, housewives, professional women, students, non-students. Each front organization had an ostensible purpose: peace, through opposition or support of any number of causes. But supporting the “Soviet line” was the proximate purpose of all. Through tens of thousands of “witting” Communists, these fronts marshaled millions of unwitting supporters, helping to reshape Western societies. Soviet political control of Europe was eminently possible, with or without an invasion, because the Soviet domestic apparatus had marshaled Soviet society, and because its international department and front organizations had convinced sectors of European societies to welcome the prospect.

The tools that today’s Russia wields vis-à-vis Europe are limited to commerce in natural gas, and to the opportunities for bribery that this creates—witness Russian Gazprom’s employment of former German chancellor Gerhard Schröder. Not only do European governments not fear being invaded by Russia, they refuse to diversify their sources of natural gas, and generally oppose American sanctions imposed on Russia because of its actions in Ukraine. The notion among European ruling parties that the voters who are in the process of rejecting them for various “populist” and nationalist options, are pining for Russian-style governance or tricked by Russian wiles is a baseless attempt to sidestep the ruling parties’ own failures.

The Lefty globalists think that? There’s a surprise! Whatever makes them think so? We see the populist movements as being unequivocally towards conservative nationalism, self-determination, personal liberty, not … neo-tsarism.

Europe’s rulers know that Russian military forces are not built to conquer the continent, because these forces lack the wherewithal for large-scale projection of power. Instead, they possess formidable capacity for what soldiers call “area denial”. This fits Russian leaders’ strategic goals, the people’s sentiments, and material constraints. The wars that today’s Russian military are built to fight are in areas that today’s Russian military sees most threatened by the U.S. and NATO, on its borders with Poland and Lithuania (where Russia crushed the Wehrmacht in 1944-45), and in Ukraine, north of Crimea. Russia’s military posture has ever been, and gives every sign of remaining, strategically defensive but operationally offensive. Now as before, when war seems imminent Russia’s operational doctrine calls for taking the initiative in a preemptive manner.

Although Russian strategy would be to surround and seal off foreign troops by air and ground, for the first time in Russia’s history, military manpower is scarce and precious. Economizing manpower is one reason why the country has fully integrated nuclear weapons in ordinary military operations, recalling nothing so much as President Dwight Eisenhower’s doctrine in the 1950s of “more bang for the buck”. To seal off the airspace, and to provide an umbrella for their ground forces, the Russians would use the S-400 air-missile defense system—the world’s best, which is now deployed around some 300 high-value locations. Strikes (or the threat thereof) by the unique Iskander short-range missile would preclude the foreign forces’ escape, as Russian troops moved in with Armata tanks, which carry the world’s best reactive armor.

Possession of perhaps the world’s best offensive and defensive strategic forces—comparable to America’s and far superior to China’s—is why Russia is confident that it can contain within limited areas the wars that it needs to fight. Because Russia has nothing to gain by military action against America or China, this arsenal is militarily useful only as insurance against anyone’s escalation of border disputes, and as the basis for Russia’s claim to be a major world player.

Priorities and Collusion

Russia loomed small in U.S. foreign policy from the time of the founding until the 1917 Bolshevik coup, because the interactions between America’s and Russia’s geopolitical and economic interests were few and mostly compatible. Given that these fundamentals have not changed, it would be best for both countries if their policies gradually returned to that long normal.

But for both countries, transcending the past century’s habits is not easy. The essential problem is that neither side’s desires, nor its calculus of ends and means, is clear to the other, or perhaps to itself. It seems that the main thing Putin or any other Russian leader might want from America is no interference as Russia tries to recreate the tsars’ empire. Thus Russia’s continuing relations with anti-U.S. regimes in Latin America can only be understood as Cold War inertia—the almost instinctive sense that what is bad for America must somehow be good for Russia. The U.S. government, for its part, while largely neglecting Russia’s involvement in the Western hemisphere, tries to limit its influence in Europe while at the same time reaching agreements concerning strategic weapons—a largely Cold War agenda. The soundness of these priorities on both sides is doubtful.

Both Russia and the U.S. fear China, and with good reason. The crushing size of contemporary China’s population and economy frightens the Russians. The fact that some Russian women marry Chinese men (disdaining Russian ones) embarrasses them and has made them more racially prejudiced than ever against the Chinese. Yet Russia aligns with China internationally and sells it advanced weapons, paid for with American money—money that China earns by trading its people’s cheap labor for America’s expensive technology. With these weapons as well as its own, China has established de facto sovereignty over the South China Sea and is pushing America out of the western Pacific. Nonetheless, the U.S. treats Russia as a major threat, including “to our democracy”. For Russia and America to work against one another to their common principal adversary’s advantage makes no geopolitical sense. But internal dynamics drive countries more than geopolitics.

Nowhere is this clearer than with the notion that Russia interfered in the 2016 U.S. election—a charge which has roiled American public life for the past two years and counting. Interference in American life? That is what the Soviet Union was all about. By contrast, current concerns about Russia are a tempest, albeit a violent one, in a domestic American teapot.

In America, the Soviets worked less through the Communist Party than they did in Europe. Here [in America], they simply seduced and influenced people at the top of our society. Even in America prominent persons in the Democratic Party, academia, media, and intelligence services (or who would become prominent, e.g., future Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders and CIA Director John Brennan), were Communists more or less openly. Far more important to the Soviets were persons convinced that Soviet and American interests were identical. Harry Hopkins, for example, who ran the U.S. government on President Franklin Roosevelt’s behalf, considered Stalin’s objectives to be so indistinguishable from America’s that the KGB considered him to be effectively Stalin’s agent. By contrast, Alger Hiss, an important State Department official, was one of many controlled Soviet agents within the U.S. government. But the compatibility between Hiss’s views and those of many in the U.S. ruling class was striking. For example, even after Soviet archives confirmed Hiss’s status as a Soviet agent, Robert McNamara, secretary of defense under Presidents John Kennedy and Lyndon Johnson, like many of his class, angrily insisted on Hiss’s innocence.

The comradeship of American liberals and Soviet Communists lasted to the Soviet Union’s end. In May 1983, for example, in an incident widely reported at the time and confirmed by Soviet archives, former U.S. senator John Tunney visited Moscow and, on behalf of his friend and classmate—and prospective Democratic presidential candidate—Senator Edward Kennedy, proposed to KGB director Viktor Chebrikov that Kennedy work with Soviet dictator Yuri Andropov to “arm Soviet officials with explanations regarding problems of nuclear disarmament so they may be better prepared and more convincing during appearances in the USA” because “the only real potential threats to Reagan [in the 1984 election] are problems of war and peace and Soviet-American relations”. Kennedy promised “to have representatives of the largest television companies in the USA contact Y.V. Andropov for an invitation to Moscow for the interviews”. Collusion, anyone? Today, with the Soviet Union gone, its moral-intellectual imprint on our ruling class remains.

The contemporary notion of Russian interference, however, owes nothing to Russia. It began when, in June 2016, the Democratic National Committee (DNC) tried to explain how a trove of e-mails showing its partiality for Hillary Clinton over Bernie Sanders got into the public domain, alleging that they had been hacked from its server by Russian agents. To this day, there is zero evidence for this, the DNC not having allowed access to that server by any law enforcement agency or independent party.

Throughout the rest of the 2016 campaign, this narrative merged with one from CIA Director John Brennan and other leaders of U.S. intelligence, who were circulating a scurrilous dossier, paid for by the Clinton campaign, that alleged Trump’s connections with Russia. The Obama Administration used the dossier as the basis for electronic and human surveillance of the Trump campaign. Together, these narratives prompted a two-year investigation by Special Counsel Robert Mueller, which found no basis for the dossier, or for a relationship between Russia and the Trump campaign. Nevertheless, the assertion of Trump’s indebtedness to Russia became the pretext for #TheResistance to the 2016 election’s result, led by the Democratic Party, most of the judiciary, the bureaucracy, and the media.

In Europe as well as in America, the establishment’s protagonists have pointed to Russia to allege that their rejection by the voters is somehow “undemocratic”. Larry Diamond in the Wall Street Journal, following Robert Kagan in the Washington Post, wrote that “in one country after another, elected leaders have gradually attacked the deep tissues of democracy—the independence [from sovereign voters] of the courts, the business community, the media, civil society, universities and sensitive state institutions like the civil service, the intelligence agencies and the police.” Voting against the establishnment, you see, is undemocratic!

What Are Our Interests?

Making impossible a rational public discussion of U.S. policy toward Russia is the very least of the damage this partisan war has wrought. American liberals believed the Soviet Union’s dissolution was impossible; conservatives flattered themselves that they caused it. Few paid attention to what happened and how. Once the Soviet Union was gone, the West in general and Americans in particular presumed to teach Russians how to live, while helping their oligarchs loot the country. Russians soon got the impression that they were being disrespected. At least as Soviets, they had been feared. The Clinton Administration was confident that Russia would become a liberal partner in the rules-based international order. At the same time Clinton tried to load onto Russia the hopes that the U.S. establishment had long entertained about global co-dominion with the Soviets. In the same moment they pushed NATO to Russia’s borders—a mess of appeasement, provocation, and insult. Long-suffering Russians, who had idolized the West during the Soviet era, came to dislike us.

As the George W. Bush Administration fumbled at the new reality, it tried to appease Russia by continuing to limit U.S. missile defenses in fact, while publicly disavowing the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty; it formally objected to Russia’s dismemberment of Georgia, while effectively condoning it. The incoming Barack Obama Administration tried to go further along the same self-contradictory line by withdrawing anti-missile support from eastern Europe, and quietly promising even more restraint. But when, in 2014, Putin seized Crimea, Obama imposed serious economic sanctions and agreed to place NATO and American troops in Poland and the Baltic States. Then, for the most tactical of domestic political considerations, the Obama Administration, and hence the U.S. establishment, decided to try explaining the course and results of the 2016 U.S. election campaign as “Russia’s attack on our democracy”.

What are the American people’s interests in Eurasia, and how big are these interests? Although today’s Russia poses none of the ideological threats that the Soviet Union did—and despite the absence of geopolitical or any other clashing interests—Russia is clearly a major adversary in Europe and the Middle East. Its technical contributions to China’s military, and its general geopolitical alignment with China, are most worrisome. What, other than Soviet inertia and wounded pride, motivates the Russians? The U.S. maintains economic sanctions on Russia. To achieve precisely what? From both sides’ perspective, it is difficult to see what good can come from this continued enmity.

Today’s triangular U.S.-Russia-China calculus is not comparable to the Soviet-Chinese military confrontation of the 1970s and ’80s, when both the U.S. and China feared Soviet missiles, and the U.S. best served its own interests by implicitly extending its nuclear umbrella over China. Today, the problems between Russia and China stem from basic disparities that U.S. policy obscures by treating Russia as, if anything, more of a threat than China. The best that the U.S. can do for itself is to say nothing, and do nothing, that obscures these disparities. Without backhanded U.S. support for close Russo-Chinese relations, the two countries would quickly become each other’s principal enemies.

Ongoing U.S. anxiety about negotiations with Russia over weaponry is nothing but a legacy of the Cold War and a refusal to pay attention to a century of experience, teaching that arms control agreements limit only those who wish to limit themselves. Russia violated the 1987 Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty by developing the Iskander missile; the U.S. was right to withdraw from the agreement, but mistaken in ever expecting another country not to arm itself as it thinks best. In that regard, Americans should not listen to, never mind accommodate in any way, Russia’s (or any other country’s) objections to U.S. missile defenses. These are in our clear and overriding interest. Defending America as best we can—against missiles that might come to us from anywhere, for any reason—is supremely our business.

What then are America’s legitimate, realizable demands on Russia?

Putin’s Russia, by its 2015-18 intervention in Syria and its management of Turkey, achieved the tsars’ historic desire for a warm water port. Although the former conquest is firm, keeping Turkey friendly to Russia must ever be troublesome. Absent a friendly Turkey, Russia’s renewed control of Crimea and even the Syrian bases will be of very limited worth for any but defensive purposes. Whatever else might be said of its role in the Middle East, Russia has brought more stable balance to local forces than ever in this young century. Only with difficulty will American statesmen regret that our old adversary now deals with some of the problems that bedeviled us for a half-century.

The U.S. would be more secure geopolitically were Russia merely one of several European powers. But it has always been an empire, whose size has varied with time. An independent Ukraine has always been the greatest practical limitation on Russia’s imperial ambitions. That is very much a U.S. interest, but is beyond our capacity to secure.

U.S. relations with Russia regarding Ukraine are analogous to U.S. relations with Europe 200 years ago. Our overriding interest then was to prevent the Europeans from holding any major part of the Western hemisphere. By stating America’s intention to guard its hemispheric interests while forswearing meddling in European affairs, the U.S. encouraged them to face that reality. Today’s Russia realizes it cannot control Ukraine except for its Russian part, nor the Baltics, never mind the Visegrád states. The U.S. could lead Russia to be comfortable with that reality by reassuring it that we will not use our normal relations with Ukraine or with any of Russia’s neighbors to try to define Russia’s limits in Europe. We should realize that our setting such limits is beyond America’s capacity, and that it undercuts the basis for fruitful relations.

The U.S. prefers the Baltic States, and especially Ukraine, to be independent. But we know, and should sincerely convey to Russia, that their independence depends on themselves, and that we regard it as counterproductive to make them into American pawns or even to give the impression that they could be. Ukraine’s independence—and hence Russia’s acceptance of it as inevitable—depends on Ukraine retrenching into its Western identity, rejecting the borders that Stalin and Khrushchev had fixed for it, and standing firmly on its own feet—as, for example, by asserting its Orthodox church’s independence from Russia’s.

Wise U.S. policy would remove sanctions that previous administrations placed on Russia on behalf of Ukraine. Fruitless strife has been these sanctions’ only result. For example, they emboldened Ukraine to suppose it had U.S. support for presuming it had the same right to navigation in the Sea of Azov, passing under a Russian bridge, as it does in the Atlantic Ocean.

But in accord with the Monroe Doctrine, we should be willing to wage economic war on Russia—outright and destructive—on America’s own behalf, were the Russians to continue supporting anti-U.S. regimes in the Western hemisphere. If you want economic peace with America, we would say, stop interfering in our backyard. We Americans, for our part, are perfectly willing to stop interfering in your backyard.

In sum, nothing should be geopolitically clearer than that the natural policy for both America and Russia is not to go looking for opportunities to get in each other’s way.

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