April 2, 2020

Corona of a Sun Eclipsed by the Artificial Object


No one knows much. Those who know nothing (the vast majority) have no idea where they could get real information.
For starters, where did this virus come from? The media and government have done nothing but lie about this. Most likely the direct origin was the US, as a deliberate bioweapon attack during the military games at Wuhan last October, or from an “accident” at Fort Detrick a few months earlier which led to a CDC order to shut down certain operations there, but not before officers became infected and then attended the Wuhan convention. These are possibilities we don’t know now and may never know.
Meanwhile, if it did turn out the origin was from China and was by “natural” transmission, that still would be an artificial origin driven by industrial agriculture which destroys all local food economies, drives deforestation, and therefore drives food producers to extremes like hunting for exotic animals in very remote regions in order to market these as a delicacy. The whole process is a machine designed to collect and disseminate every kind of pathogen residing in those remote areas.
So no matter what, bioweapon, exotic food market, or anything in between, it’s an artificial US-driven origin.

Where does that leave us right now? Certainly we cannot look to any existing “authorities” other than while wearing the same hazmat suit we do when we assess the corporate media in any other case. First, at best they know very little. Second and more importantly, their system, their ideology, their educational background, their mindset is dedicated completely to goals – power and profit – which render it impossible for any of their structures to function effectively toward any other goal. These scientific and medical structures couldn’t act effectively toward the public good, the public health, even if they suddenly wanted to.
This society chose to enshrine capitalism its most virulent neoliberal form, to entrench it so deeply that even in a crisis where most people, perhaps even most authorities want to pivot to a goal different from sheer profiteering, they find it impossible. Now America is stuck with this worthless, counter-productive system. When you take a pseudo-medical structure dedicated to maximizing corporate profit and try to use it for such a completely different purpose as to practice medicine, that won’t work. Same when you try to use a profit-seeking “health insurance” system to provide actual health care. It won’t work.
Of course almost all “authorities” from top to bottom have the ulterior motives systematically inculcated in them by this psychopathic system. The US government already has seized the opportunity afforded by the mass hysteria to perpetrate yet another monumental crime, a corporate bailout so astronomical as to comprise a corporate coup. By now the Wall Street bailout, permanently ongoing for the duration of the US system, which began with the first $750 billion in 2008 has reached incalculable tens of trillions and the Fed has escalated yet again.
America had the chance to eradicate Wall Street and the purely destructive finance sector once and for all in 2008-09 but chose to stand by while the government expended trillions to bail out this purely wasteful and destructive sector. Wall Street executives, major shareholders, propagandists should have been hanged or shot for their Nuremburg-level crimes, all four counts. Instead they were allowed personally to keep the billions they stole while their banks have been bailed out to the tune of tens of trillions by now, and the flood of fake money spewing from the Fed’s collapsing dam only continues to intensify.
So no wonder there’s mass hysteria, although even the vacuum of real authority doesn’t explain the mass-hysterical self-abjection and subjection. Never in history has such a vast mass of people sat so passively, in such a state of infantile regression, simply waiting to be told the next thing by what now really is Big Brother.
(I don’t expect ever again to hear a word about how the term “sheeple” is in any way unfair. On the contrary, it falls far short of what almost all people, literal domestic livestock with a purely inert mindset, including almost all of our “alternative” internet nabobs and strutters*, now have proven themselves to be.)
The science is fairly clear about a few things, and agrees with common sense in each case:
1. Prolonged exposure is more dangerous than fleeting exposure.
2. Indoor co-presence or casual contact carries some danger of transmission, though it’s not clear how much. Same for extended closeness outdoors.
3. Outdoor activity while maintaining a reasonable distance carries zero or almost zero danger.
Indeed the economic action around here in northern NJ seems to reflect this: Most indoor businesses are closed, and the ones open have staff wearing masks and have set up various cough barriers and such. But there seems to be no slackening in outdoor work such as construction. If anything that seems stepped-up.
That puts in perspective the notion, for which there’s zero evidence, that non-contact outdoor recreation could be a significant transmission vector. On the contrary, medical science does have abundant evidence that outdoor activity is critical for physical and psychological health, especially for boosting the immune system so important to all of us now, while submitting to indoor incarceration is physically and psychologically detrimental and depresses immune function.
That tells us what we need to know about those shrieking how all-important and “safest” it is to hunker in a bomb shelter rather than enjoy the outdoors. These people have zero science or reason behind them, and all the evidence is against them. They’re spreading harmful misinformation. The least bad thing we could say about them is that they were stampeded along with the rest of the hysterical sheep herd. Although it’s becoming more and more difficult to give them even this benefit of the doubt.
*It’s been especially enlightening to see how almost all those I’ve seen online as staking claims to be anti-authoritarians, anti-empire, skeptics of power, self-styled “rebels”, always preaching “trust no one” and to research things for yourself since it’s the only way to come close to truth, how almost all of them have regressed to infancy and run home to totalitarian mama the moment there seems to be anything at stake. Turns out most of them were liars and frauds. (Dmitry Orlov has maintained some skepticism about how grotesque the response and mindset are becoming.) The list of those I used to respect on some level but for whom I now have nothing but contempt keeps growing.
Can you imagine any of these cowards being able to sustain even a single principle in a time of real crisis?

March 16, 2020


Filed under: Civil Disobedience, Civil Liberties, Freedom, Global War On Terror, Globalization — Tags: , — Russell Bangs @ 4:45 pm


It’s ironic, given how the Chinese have been grossly slandered so far by the US government and media, that here all of humanity can contemplate a monumental example of the saying always attributed to the Chinese, “a crisis is also an opportunity.”
If only all the people now resorting to a simplified state under the pest’s duress would take that to heart and realize this is not only a much better way of life as such, but a far healthier and resilient way in the face of the many escalating crises shortly to break upon us. Measures against this so-far mild pandemic already prove in principle that neoliberal globalization and the continuing metastasis of the economy are not necessary and can be dismantled permanently without the sky falling.
The other option, and so far it looks more likely, is that in the same way that enough Americans for a quorum have accepted a permanent state of partial lockdown and police state encroachment since 9/11, if the federal government were now to order a much more comprehensive lockdown along with restrictions on movement and gatherings, allegedly “temporary” for the duration of the pandemic, but then this pandemic turned out to be as open-ended from the point of view of government policy as the “global war on terror” has been, and the lockdown became effectively permanent, odds are no one would object or resist.
Humanity is at a world-historical pivot point and can go the right way or the wrong way, perhaps a very wrong way. The threat of tyranny must be added to medical common sense as we realize the right way to live for now is to take special care and precaution with the vulnerable elderly, but not otherwise radically amputate the limbs of our lives, limbs which will remain sufficiently functional if we choose to use them instead of crawling into an isolation chamber to be locked behind us.

March 15, 2020

Tests of Strength


Many years ago I began noting on these pages how bourgeois ideology had won complete victory in the minds of Westerners and their apes around the world, no matter what superficial politics various groups still profess as a hobby. I’ve noted that We’re All Lumpenproles Now.
We’ve seen how “the Left” offers no alternative to maximum exploitation within the death machine, let alone to the death machine itself.
We saw how the British left, faced with the prospect of striking a blow against globalization through Brexit, where their rightful anti-globalist task was to fight for a socialist or at least progressive Brexit, instead ran home to globalist mama and joined the elites shilling for the EU.
Here in America we’ve long been nauseated by the disgusting spectacle of “progressives” and many “leftists”, even those who have solemnly sworn “Never Again”, running home to the Democratic sheep pen every chance they get, every time the Party retches up another fraudulent fake-leftish celebrity.
We’ve seen how the concern trolls for the environment, every kind of mainstream “eco-friendly” type shedding crocodile tears for the Earth and its climate, runs home to every kind of corporate collaboration and “Green New Deal” mama. That means ecocidal Business as Usual, just the “green” capitalist, fake-“renewable” version.
These in common express the indelible devotion and commitment of all existing political groupings to the economic society: Its perpetuation and continued aggravation unto maximum ecocide, maximum genocide of natural peoples, collective suicide.
And the first returns indicate that this will be true of the Corona pandemic as well.
There are already many comparisons of the Corona pest with the climate crisis, how civilization is equally unprepared for both, for the same self-destructive reasons, and how the pest will highlight in a much faster and more visible way this lack of will or ability to prepare, adapt, mitigate.
That’s true, and we must go further. The knee-jerk response, not just from the system, its media, and the usual mainstream conformists but of self-styled “dissidents” as well, is to reinforce all the patterns which brought us to this crisis: Conformity to state and corporate decrees, self-sacrifice in terms of doubling down on psychological and now physical isolation, all consciously and explicitly for the sake of getting the economy back on track as soon as possible.
This universal panic on behalf of the economic society includes the rejection of the lessons of hundreds of years of medical experience, reinforced by the experience of the 1918 influenza pandemic, that the best preventive as well as treatment includes sunlight and fresh air, while hunkering down in one’s bomb shelter is the wrong way to go. This is especially true for the sake of psychological health. As the economic system has long known, isolation is demoralizing and physically weakening. That’s why the system has worked so hard to structurally reinforce mass atomization and isolation and indoctrinate the atoms into the belief that this is natural, desirable, at any rate inevitable. But physical and mental health depend on activity and community. Today more than ever we have a test of strength for those who normally profess these principles.
To say again, we should take rational precautions, avoiding mass gatherings or any unnecessary crowded indoor context. But this must not extend to our necessary coming together with loved ones and friends, those with whom we share the seeds of humanity and community. We mustn’t let fear and indoctrination (and in the end almost all the fear is really fear of the system itself, its physical and economic threats) blast away this truth. We must continue to live as humanly as possible, for the sake of both our human future as well as our short-run physical and mental health.

March 14, 2020

Double Down, or Free Ourselves


The reaction to the Corona pest, a product of the economic civilization, is becoming a great escalation of the psychological pandemic native to this economy.
The great cultural trend of modernity has been to atomize and isolate human beings. Through economic and political processes they are driven to lose all reality of community and solidarity. Through the physical and cultural fact of being gathered into great masses they lose all grounding and are forced to float without anchor amid a featureless sea. Through indoctrination into ideologies of Mammon, productionism and liberal individualism they are induced to see this atomization and universal faithlessness as the god-given way of the world, if not a positive good.
Today we reach a milestone on this road toward maximum isolation, as the fear-mongering campaigns of governments and media urge or order people to isolate themselves physically as much as possible. Even inside a house the inhabitants should stick to separate rooms.
Reasonable prudence is one thing, and obviously people should avoid mass gatherings. As much as possible we should avoid needless indoor assembly. That includes almost all “jobs”, but then humans always should have avoided being shackled to that system. So the pest changes nothing there in principle, it only gives a special impetus. Those who never cared about psychological and spiritual disease finally show signs of taking some action against the fear of physical disease.
But beyond this the call to hunker in a personal bunker, a physical and psychological state close to hunkering in a bomb shelter because you fear the missiles are flying, is a great escalation of the whole trend toward isolation, atomization, dehumanization.
Contrary to the evolution denial of the whole modern ideology of spiritual atomism, humans evolved over millions of years to live in small, tight-knit communities where each is responsible for all and dependent upon all. This never changed during the period of the dominion of modern economy. On the contrary, the modern campaign of spiritual genocide seeking to eradicate all human communities and replace them with a vast technocratic bureaucracy ruling over a vast mass of atoms has generated a universal pandemic of psychological and spiritual dislocation, confusion, distraction, despair, psychopathy.
Today more than ever, as the diverse crises converge toward a great pivot, combine their amplitudes toward the great Kinesis, today more than ever it is critical that we come together to rebuild our communities. The way things are going we may need to put our energies into projects for weathering the storm, extreme adaptation. So be it, this combines the necessary practical action with the necessary renewal of community.
Most critically at such a moment, we need to see one another and mutually affirm that we’re not going to be terrorized into hiding from one another. We’re not going to react to this acute crisis of the economic civilization by self-reinforcing the atomized isolation this civilization always has worked to instill in us as second nature, as anti-nature.
For me personally, my main social activity is to go out on group hikes. I do that several times a week. I’ll be going out again twice this weekend. I’ll keep getting together for as long as others are getting together. These aren’t people I know well from anyplace else in life, they’re casual friends and acquaintances I’ve met and gotten to know through our shared love of hiking. This shared love for the outdoors, including for many of us the wish to relearn so much about nature, knowledge the modern society has worked hard to eradicate in us, could be a seed for a more resilient, self-sufficient, organic and human community. If nothing else it’s still a shared will to continue to live and to enjoy living, and to share this enjoyment in spite of the paranoia against all such sharing which the system is working to instill in everyone.
Don’t give in to it. The needful mindset and action remain the same as they always were: Resist the system as much as possible, work to rebuild our human communities, sustain a healthy mind and soul.

March 13, 2020

The Economy’s Plague


As the Corona pest becomes a psychological pandemic as well, many feel panic over how the alleged panic of others is disrupting “the economy”. We see how many even among erstwhile dissidents suddenly want to run home to ecocidal economic mama.
But if the economy wasn’t based 100% upon destruction and disaster, including all the just-in-time tightropes it deliberately walks at all times, including all “outsourcing” and deliberate eradication of all regional self-sufficiency, it wouldn’t be so vulnerable even to severe crises.
Propagandists and their apes cite FDR’s warning against falling prey to “fear itself.”
But the pandemic is causing only a portion of the ambient fear-itself. The great majority of it was already free-floating and now is being concentrated by this pest. That includes all the anxiety constantly generated by the ecocidal commodity economy.
Many fear a non-linear totalitarian jump in police state powers stemming from the alleged need for forcible quarantine, lockdown, martial law, a much greater leap even than the government’s cynical manipulation of 9/11 to vastly increase the scope of its aggressive militarism, surveillance state and police regime.
Everyone should indeed fear this. But it’s what they all support at every turn, all ultimately for the sake of the commodity Mammon economy.
There’s a famous quote from Ben Franklin which is often cited and almost always in a misguided way: “Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.” This is often paraphrased using “freedom” and “security” instead, no matter. The gist is that people are willing to give up real freedom in exchange for a very false sense of safety. This is certainly true as far as it goes.
But in reality it doesn’t go far since today neither freedom nor security mean anything compared to economic consumption, producing and consuming worthless junk, being as destructive and wasteful as possible, and the fundamentalist religious worship of “the economy” as such. Almost all Western or Westernized peoples willingly, eagerly throw away all freedom and security for the ecocidal economy’s sake.
Nothing is more enslaving and self-enslaving, more antithetical to all freedom (except the Sodom and Gomorrah license of the rich, which isn’t freedom either – none of them ever looks free to stop accumulating, stop at vastly more than Enough, go be happy and enjoy life), than the economic death march.
The economy is the source of the Coronavirus pandemic in the first place, and it is the cause of all the death and travail that comes from this pest. The pest and its effects, including any economic disruption up to and including collapse, is a blow purely self-inflicted by a civilization at war with its own biological basis, including waging war on its own people. The pest arose either from a US bioweapon experiment/attack, or it is a pandemic arising from the economics of globalization (deforestation, factory agriculture, cramming masses into slums and shantytowns, the demolition of all public health systems and all decent access to decent health care except for the rich). The system is deploying every kind of scapegoating in its try to cover up its complete culpability while trying to continue with Business As Usual as much as is politically or physically possible.
They scapegoat individuals who their system deliberately has deprived of accurate and truthful information (about this pest and about everything else, going back as far as anyone alive can remember), those they deliberately have deprived of all sense of stability and security and community sufficiency and resilience (again going back as far as we can recall), scapegoat them for giving in to fear (which is a manifestation of the ideology of capitalist-liberal individualism into which they all were indoctrinated).
They scapegoat people for behaving exactly the way the elites of the economic society normally want them to behave, the elites which long have expended such massive resources to indoctrinate and propagandize the people into exactly such behavior, they scapegoat them now that we’ve reached a crisis where this behavior boomerangs on the slave economy itself.
If you must insist on weeping for the plight of the economy, at least put the blame where it belongs, 100% on the elites. No amount of panic (and none of us knows at this early date what really constitutes panic, as opposed to prudence) on the part of the people could exceed the bounds of the mass-psychological atmosphere the elites of the economic civilization deliberately have instilled in these masses, who this economy deliberately atomized in the first place.
Having said that, people should not panic. The reason is not because this can aggravate the disruption of the economy which is so grossly disrupting itself, but for their own psychological sake and practical resiliency. (The same reason for personal energy conservation – not because this will lower by one BTU’s worth the amount of fossil fuels the economic civilization will extract and burn, or that it will stave off even one part per million of rise in atmospheric carbon concentration, but for reasons of personal psychological health and practical reasons of personal, family, community resiliency.)
It’s this social/cultural/economic system which has destroyed community and family, atomized everyone, driven the modern pandemic of anomie, anxiety and despair. People who feel so demoralized in turn are more vulnerable to physical illness, just as people who are part of an intact, mutually responsible and reinforcing social group feel better psychologically and physically are less vulnerable.
Now more than ever we need to rebuild real community, relocalize how we produce what we need and truly want, rebuild food sovereignty, community food security, a renewed way of living with and in the land rather than as parasite squatters on its surface.
Such squatters are the most vulnerable to every extreme wind, howling from the economy itself such as crashing oil prices, from the climate crisis, from the pandemics driven by the globalization and ecocide inherent to the economic civilization. Those who live by this economy shortly shall die of it. If the Corona pest turns out not to be the Big One, it’s yet another shot across the bow, a last warning before this imminent advent.

February 15, 2020

The Fire’s Halo


It’s very interesting to see a top-tier economic government evidently choosing quarantine for the public health over the economic imperative.
That in itself is strong circumstantial evidence that the Chinese government knows or suspects this was a US biological attack. If it had been a Chinese bioweapon screw-up or had arisen from the economy* (commodity food production from factory animals, commodity distribution toward global chains, habitat destruction and economic penetration), they likely wouldn’t be so openly draconian in their response.
Maybe China’s calculation is that if the war has reached this level, if the US biological warfare campaign has become an acute enough threat, then it’s finally time to strike back in an economically existential way by crashing the global economy and in the process directly destroy the dollar hegemony.
This would not be China’s action, but would proceed logically from the US action. The US imperial position is 100% responsible for its acts of destruction and self-destruction via the blowback it provokes.
In the same way the US calculated the timing of its strike (the Chinese New Year), so the perfect time to strike back with economic destruction is during this election year 2020 when the US mass psychological derangement is likely to reach a new peak. It won’t take much more energy being pumped into the turbulence to send the US into full-blown berserk mode.
There’s long been a Mutually Assured Destruction doctrine for the globalized economy, but then in the early 20th century that’s what many believed about European economic integration: It “proved” there could be no general European war.
They were right to an extent – such integration is inertial against war. But as 1914 proved, they were wrong about the economic factor being all-powerful. The same is true today.
*Short of an asteroid impact there’s no longer such a thing as “natural” disasters. All disasters are completely caused (almost all of them) or tremendously magnified by the economic system.

October 13, 2019

Green Globalization, A Temporary Measure to Buy Time


The F18 “Green Hornet” flying on the fake-renewable “biofuel” of condemned arable land. It may soon escort biofueled billionaire jets to their island fortresses

Globalization is among other things the replacement of national and community sovereignty by corporate anti-sovereignty. Nationhood, democracy, community life are incompatible with the corporate pseudo-sovereignty. If you want corporate rule, as almost all Westerners do (proven by actions) you must destroy all the others. Nation, democracy, community as the triple targets of the “free trade” onslaught demonstrates how sovereignty itself can arise out of the people. We can deduce from this that the only way to defend either and maximize both is to eradicate corporations and elites completely. It’s democracy which must be maximized: Direct democracy.
The World Bank, IMF, WTO and so on, these are flunkeys, power launderers, stooge cadres. In America the real powers are Wall Street, the Republican and Democratic Parties, the weapons rackets, the agribusiness rackets, the IT rackets, and some other oligopoly players. These players concoct the “agreements” between “countries” which really are turf deals among gangster elites. (World War II is best seen as a gangland turf war where all the major participants were aggressors.) The politicians sign these agreements and set up special organizations like the WTO and IMF to serve as the enforcement arm. The WTO etc. as well as most of the Democrats and Republicans, are the hired goons. The “free” trade treaties are really corporate contracts written by the likes of Monsanto and Cargill. But these contracts aren’t actual agreements among free parties. They’re instruments of tyranny to be imposed by elite diktat from the top down, from the highest most concentrated power, as a hail of rocks, burning ash and poison upon the disenfranchised people below.
Globalization and corporate contracts are imposed through coercion. Where there’s a huge power and need differential between the parties, it’s impossible for them freely to contract with one another. Such contracts have no moral validity, and are supposed to have no legal validity. Freedom of contract is impossible under conditions of power or wealth inequality. But in practice the whole endeavor of corporate Mammon, corporate capitalism, neoliberalism, at every level from the basic employer-employee “negotiation” to the most global trade agreements, is to replace actual freedom of contract with these contracts-by-force. The very word “contract” implies coercion and violence. The goal is to destroy economic freedom and replace it with gangster-imposed and enforced protection rackets and direct plunder.
There’s the essence of globalization. The goal always has been to take what according to the capitalists’ own textbooks should be a small appendage of the economy and ruthlessly, recklessly, destructively impose its values and culture on all of life. Not just economic life, but political, social, cultural and private life as well. These values and culture really are psychopathy and decadent barbarism.
At the final stage of neoliberal corporate capitalism the elites impose financialization and manipulate it to amass all power and real assets. Their plan is to achieve total corporate dominion, the total surveillance state and militarized police state, the complete debt indenture of the population, and to maintain as much of their material luxury as possible under the conditions of fossil fuel depletion and ecological collapse. Their strategy has been to use the corporate form, the propaganda of “capitalism” and “democracy”, and the forms of representative pseudo-democracy, to monopolize ever growing portions of wealth and power. Having attained this position of dominance they now will use it to push the rest of us down into dark age shantytown police- and gang-afflicted conditions. Their preferred path for doing this will be debt slavery. If necessary they’ll try to use the police state whose skeleton they’ve already constructed, and even classical fascism.
As the climate crisis, mass extinction and general ecological collapse proceed, the political faction which pretends to want to do something about them will gain the upper hand with its “Green New Deal”, its promises of green capitalism, green metastatic cancer (AKA “growth”), green prodcutionism and consumerism, industrial-fake-renewables to continue to provide extreme energy consumption, and the rest of “the American way of life”. This will be sold as both the ecological and social panacea. The fact that it’s all a lie, that you can’t save the Earth by continuing to destroy it, that you can’t fix the socioeconomic evils of capitalism by doubling down on capitalism, won’t matter. The whole thing will be primarily a propaganda campaign, coupled with some temporary meager scraps thrown to the precariat and lumpenproles. The real purpose of this Green New Deal and any companion programs will be to buy time and perpetuate the global capitalist regime as long as possible while the elites consolidate their position for their plan to continue to rule as the rockslide of collapse gathers force and chaos. Just as the purpose of the original New Deal was to save capitalism, so today’s mainstream “green” proposals have only the purpose of saving capitalism and perpetuating the ecocidal binge. Big Green groups and progressive politicians are usually explicit about this.
And then the Green New Deal program also is sold within the framework of anti-human globalization, and as a way to preserve and intensify globalization. The globalization cadres and mechanisms such as the World Bank already have long been deeply immersed in the scam-mongering of “offset” regimes, the Clean Development Mechanism (“sustainable development” is just one of the many oxymorons we encounter), the REDD greenwash of ecocide, and others.
The mainstream climate-industrial movement will play a leading gatekeeper role here, doing all it can to ensure that the rising concern and fear and willingness among the people to take action for the Earth will remain kettled and controlled by astroturfs, will remain in the position of supplicating to the state (which is what all such “demands” on inherently ecocidal-genocidal governments boil down to), and will not break free of this domesticated reform mentality philosophically and in action in order directly to do what is necessary to assist Gaia’s Kinesis against these destroyers of the Earth while there’s still time and an ecological basis to sustain something of humanity as well as the more-than-human species now being driven extinct at an estimated rate of 200 a day.
While this general social misdirection is ongoing the elites will attempt the shift from direct fossil fuels to fossil-based alternate fuels, for the sake of maintaining their power and their luxury consumption. We’ve already seen a larger-scale version of this with the diversion of vast amounts of food from the already-hungry people of the world to the gas tanks of the Western personal car. This is the industrial agrofuel strategy. Just like all other liquidations, this one’s coming home as well. America itself already has ever growing numbers of the hungry while more and more corn is hijacked for agrofuels. Here we can see one iteration of the basic pattern I’ve called resource fascism. All notions of fake-industrial-renewables have the same basic goal. Picture a network of fortresses powered by the “smart grid”, biofueled private jets travelling between, while outside the walls permanently indentured debtors slave in the fields and sleep in shantytowns, their labor compelled by the draconian penalties dangling over the heads of all defaulters, their debt compounding every day. That’s the goal of the political and economic elites.
This is how is the barbed wire being strung around us.

February 9, 2019

The Purpose of Paris


This one’s for the trees

“In more ingenuous times, when the tyrant razed cities for his own greater glory, when the slave chained to the conqueror’s chariot was dragged through the rejoicing streets, when enemies were thrown to the wild beasts in front of the assembled people, the mind did not reel before such unabashed crimes, and judgment remained unclouded. But slave camps under the flag of freedom, massacres justified by philanthropy or by a taste for the superhuman, in one sense cripple judgment. On the day when crime dons the apparel of innocence — through a curious transposition peculiar to our times — it is innocence that is called upon to justify itself.”
– Albert Camus, The Rebel
Some call it a loophole. If so it’s a loophole wide enough to push a dead planet through. But it’s really no accident.
There’s a clear and simple fact. Real conservation, especially in the face of the climate crisis, means ceasing from destroying natural forests, leaving them alone, and letting them resume their ranges. Anything other than this is a fraud, and especially a climate fraud. The “biomass” industry is an atrocity. The civilization destroys forests in order to burn wood pellets for industrial electricity and heat. This is enshrined within all existing international climate agreements. The climate industry accelerates deforestation and greenhouse emissions under the rubric of “the climate”. The flag of the Earth flies from the tree-burning factory. Arbeit Macht Frei.
The climate-industrial movement, including most of its critics, has exalted the 2015 Paris agreement as the movement’s climax achievement to date, its gold-mined standard for enlightened climate policy and especially for right belief.
Eco-hypocrisy and eco-treason is the worst kind, and the Paris crime reaches the worst extreme yet. All mainstream climate concern focuses not on saving the Earth but on finding a way to drag out the death march of production and feeding the consumption maw. The climate movement wants to drag out the consumer economy as long as possible and has no other goal. Paris is the epitome.
Natural forests are the primary carbon sinks. The primary goal of the Paris scam is to complete the destruction of all the world’s natural forests and replace them with ecologically dead tree plantations as part of an ongoing logging and coal-burning industry which will continue to be a massive emitter of carbon dioxide. Of course every acre of natural forest destroyed toward this goal releases all its stored carbon in a massive surge. Contrary to the Paris lies, this carbon surge will never be “recaptured”, and it’s not meant to be.
Thus Paris directly contradicts the climate movement’s own IPCC which in its most recent report stressed the critical need to preserve and restore natural forests to serve as permanent sinks.
The Environmental Paper Network recently released a report on the escalating subsidy-driven commodity wood pellet industry. Are Forests the New Coal? lays out a “global threat map” of the toxic politics of this meld of the logging industry, the coal industry, and the climate-industrial movement.
Here are the report’s “Key Findings”: 1. The production and burning of wood pellets has doubled over the last ten years to 14 million metric tons in 2017. The report cites industry projections which have the destruction increasing 250% to 36 million tonnes by 2027.
2. In climate-industrial propaganda usage, “renewable energy” and “carbon neutral” are fake terms. Most wood pellets are processed from whole trees and the complete destruction of natural forest sinks and biodiversity. The biomass industry drives climate change and mass extinction. It’s as non-renewable and anti-ecological as it gets.
3. Encouraged by the Western propaganda and practice as enshrined by Paris and other climate accords, such Asian countries as Japan and South Korea are planning a massive expansion of pellet imports and burning for industry electricity and heat.
4. The great bulk of industrial “biomass” comes from forests. It comes from the clear-cutting of natural forests and the farming of tree plantations which are cultivated on the ground where those massacres took place. This is a direct contradiction of the movement’s own IPCC, which stresses the critical importance of natural forests as carbon sinks.
5. The projected surge of wood pellet consumption will escalate the destruction of all remaining natural tropical, temperate, and boreal forests. Paris and the movement envision a world where ALL natural forest will be eradicated and where all logging will be done on industrialized tree plantations. This will be a world of radically higher atmospheric CO2 concentration, higher temperatures, greater climate chaos, and greatly escalated mass extinctions of every kind of plant and animal species.
Prior to the great escalation over the last ten years, and especially prior to the subsidy regime which Paris has escalated, pellet burning was less prominent and for the most part regionally based. But in ten years the international commodity stream has surged, with an increasing number of giant tree-burning factories. This expansion, this “growth”, this cancer is the real purpose of Paris.
For confirmation of intent, one need only look to the system of fraudulent accounting this and other agreements set up.
The EU and the various international climate mechanisms always have used false accounting to label things “carbon neutral”, and the climate movement then launders this fraud as “renewable”, “green”. The Paris scam is the culmination to date of this atrocious political process.
Before getting to the Paris crimes, let’s start with the fact that the proclaimed Paris goals are absurd. Paris enshrines 2 degrees Celsius as its temporary red line, though as heating increases the goalpost will move with it. Meanwhile the last time the atmospheric carbon concentration was above 400PPM, as it has been for several years now, the global temperature was 5-10 degrees higher than now. That much heating already is locked in, although temperatures will take some time to catch up to millions of years worth of carbon increase compressed into a hundred year deluge. And throughout the thirty years of the UN-enshrined climate movement emissions have continued to increase and have been increasing at an escalating rate. Emissions will continue to rise for as long as the industrial civilization exists. So the ultimate global heating will be higher than 5-10 degrees Celsius. How much higher depends solely on how long industrial emissions and destruction of sinks continue.
As if these goals aren’t pathetic enough in principle, they’re also purely voluntary. The Paris goals are a pure sham in every way.
In fact the only part of Paris which is not voluntary are the subsidies for logging and coal. And of course the dying – by trees, by native plants and animals, and if the architects have their way, by Gaia herself.
So in principle all Paris has are fake goals along with the fake premise of “green capitalism”, “green growth” aka cancer, and that there’s still a “carbon budget” left to spend. This “spending”, as they abstractly call it in their technocratic way, is direct ecological destruction in the real world, the deliberate extermination of hundreds of species per day.
The destruction wrought by wood pelleting is clear. It eradicates old-growth forests from northern Canada to the Amazon, Latvia to Borneo, and triggers a massive emission surge. There’s the initial hemorrhage from the destruction of forest sinks (and the lost uptake those forests would have performed in the future). Logging itself and the transportation of dead trees and processing them into pellets are carbon intensive industrial actions. On “managed” forests and tree plantations we can add the fossil fuels embedded in the massive volume of insecticides and herbicides sprayed, and the fuel for the aerial spraying. The tree-burning factories spew huge amounts of CO2. Burning wood for electricity emits 50% more CO2 per megawatt hour of electricity than coal. The factories also are major emitters of particulate pollution.
The double high-carbon impact of destroying natural sinks and the tree-burning process makes the Paris claim that the biomass industry is carbon neutral “doubly false” in the words of the EPN report.
Paris bases its “carbon neutral” claim on systematic accounting fraud. They start by simply refusing to count any emissions by the energy sector. These emissions are massive, far worse than burning coal, but Paris brazenly declares them to be zero. They claim to justify this by counting all the emissions of the entire process at the logging end. This is just a trick in order to claim they’ve attained carbon neutral electrical generation.* Meanwhile they grossly under-count the emissions at the logging end and then lie about “recycling” this carbon through industrial plantation trees. There are many lies in play here.
1. Destroying a natural forest (the most capacious mid-range ecological sink) causes a massive release of carbon. In principle a sanitized monoculture plantation could never assimilate more than a fraction of the carbon of an old-growth forest. The ecological basis for maximum tree growth and soil building doesn’t exist.
2. Plantation trees never come near reaching even this diminished potential since they’re harvested much younger than this. Natural forests are renewable in themselves if left alone. If they’re destroyed and prevented from regrowing, including replacement by factory-farmed tree plantations, they never renew themselves nor is their carbon ever stored. Monoculture industrial plantations are so unproductive and counter-productive as sinks as not to count. The entire process of destroying a forest and replacing it with a plantation adds up to a non-renewable and therefore unsustainable state. So the “carbon neutral” claim is a lie both in principle and in practice.
3. In a natural cycle some of the carbon taken down from the air is stored in the soil, and some flows in solution to the ocean and ends up as sedimentary limestone deposits. When civilization burns the trees and destroys the soil, 100% is emitted.
4. Then there’s the time frame which the Paris accounting pretends doesn’t exist. The process burns all the wood and releases all the CO2 today, and in return the Earth receives the Paris IOU promising to re-sequester all this carbon twenty years from now, thirty years, a hundred…As Derrick Jensen put it, “This is accounting fraudulent enough to make Enron jealous.”
These future carbon-sinking forests which exist only on the Paris books and will never exist except in their propaganda are a lot like Hitler’s ghost divisions which existed nowhere but on a map. By now the Earth-destroyer civilization is becoming more and more like Hitler in the bunker. One measure of this is its felt need for such massive lie campaigns.
So according to their own premise, the industrial biomass carbon cycle will take a long time. But their own propaganda also says there is no time, that societies need to act now. So there’s this direct self-contradiction within the climate-industrial propaganda.
In reality there’s no way such a program could ever do anything but escalate and accelerate the destruction of natural forests. Productionism, the framework which Paris and the movement seek to sustain, inherently always works toward oversupply and expansion. Therefore by design and inertia it always works to generate more demand for its supply. No one who knows anything about the production economy would be surprised by the projection of 250% expansion of tree destruction and pellet burning over the next ten years. Given any fuel, as Paris fuels this industry with subsidies and propaganda support, any industry will expand as far and destructively as is physically possible.
The fact is, anyone who really wanted the necessary immediate action would start with a total end to the destruction of natural forests. The mainstream movement’s own IPCC, as a rule conservative in its projections, even says so. The biomass industry as enshrined in the Paris agreement directly contradicts the IPCC.
The whole Paris regime of fraud with its “Renewable Energy Directive” is typical of the long-running fraud of the technocratic mainstream movement as a whole, in the tradition of “offsets” and other scams designed to mask escalated emissions and wholesale ecological destruction under the “climate” rubric.
Massacres justified by philanthropy, and indeed a taste for the superhuman.
The specific biomass accounting fraud and the propaganda of calling this non-renewable extraction industry “renewable” goes back to Kyoto in 1997.
The propaganda says the biomass material is supposed to come from “residues”. This is intended to put the public in mind of leftover shavings in timber plants and dead twigs and such. In reality it means any whole trees which are killed for pellet and biofuel processing rather than for lumber are classified as “residue”. It means that most pellet production comes from whole trees killed for this purpose, most of these coming from destroyed natural forests, while those from tree plantations come from ground where the natural forest or wetland was destroyed, releasing all its carbon along with the eradication of all its biodiversity.
Contrary to the lies, “sawmill residue” could never accommodate the surging subsidized production and artificially generated demand, only whole trees can. Therefore Paris enshrines this fraudulent accounting of whole trees as residues. This incentive for logging trees not suitable for timber is a great driver of quantity-based deforestation. As the EPN report says, “The income generated by high-intensity harvests based on quantity criteria may make more logging operations financially viable, as compared to those operations constrained to take high quality wood alone. In places where the community is struggling to retain natural forests the advent of such a lucrative, incentives-based ‘residue’ trade can drive further logging incursions and promote clear-cutting as a logging method.”
This escalation of logging and in particular clear-cutting natural forests is the intended purpose of Paris. Otherwise the accord wouldn’t have gone so far out of its way to legalize this fraudulent accounting.
Since this destruction of natural forests and use of plantation trees competes with use for lumber, pulp, and other industries, it drives further logging and deforestation. If one acre of forest was slated to be clear-cut for lumber (or one acre of a plantation on a formerly forested site), and now you add an acre for wood pellets for industrial electricity, that obviously requires doubling the deforesting.
In the same way, they tout how some biomass comes from agricultural leftovers like straw and stover. But this means stripping agricultural land of the residues needed to maintain the soil, thus hastening its own process of destroying the soil and having to move on to further deforestation and wetland destruction.
This depletion of agricultural soil also drives the escalated use of synthetic fertilizers and pesticides (the lower quality the soil, the more you need). The vicious circle is total.
Finally, the Paris drive to maximize the replacement of forests with tree plantations for maximum biomass and biofuel production is a great spur to the campaign to deploy GM trees, especially fire-prone and destructively invasive eucalyptus, which grow faster and/or are better composed for processing into biofuels. In turn, the alleged “need” for this technology is in order to feed the Paris maw. They mass murder trees to run their pleasure cars.
All this is environmentalism, according to our “climate movement”.
The privileged method of burning trees includes “co-firing”. This means wood pellets are mixed with coal before burning. It’s cheaper for coal-burning factories to retool for combined wood-coal burning than to switch completely from coal to wood. This reinforces the Paris goal of artificially propping up both the logging and coal industries at the expense of the climate, Earth, and public. The policy is designed to extend the life of coal-fired power factories. France in particular has been explicit that one of its primary goals was to economically prop up coal-mining. No wonder the recent COP24 in Poland, where one of the purposes was to further hammer out procedural details for carrying out the Paris guidelines, was openly sponsored by Big Coal. All this under the flag of “the climate”. (I first typed “Big Caol”, as if really for Big Gaol. Not really a slip, but expresses reality.)
This is the culmination so far of Big Green’s Judenrate ideology based on collaborating with the mass murderers in order to “have a place at the table” to “manage” the ecocide-genocide. This mindset and practice goes back to the 1970s, with the mainstream corporate-dominion-environmental groups espousing an ideology which can be summed up as: Industry is good, industry is natural, industry is ecological, ecocide is ecological, destruction is conservation. As then-president of the National Wildlife Federation Jay Hair put it while denouncing the attempts of EarthFirst! and others to actually defend the Earth, “there’s no fundamental difference between destroying a river and destroying a bulldozer” (cf. Green Rage by Christopher Manes, p. 17). Which of course really means the bulldozer has precedence and right to destroy the river, destroy the forest, destroy the wetland, destroy the entire Earth. The statement is incomprehensible in any other way.
The “biomass” atrocity is the most clear proof to date that it’s impossible to do anything real within the capitalist framework, and more broadly the framework of the production-consumption civilization. It proves the politics and the culture are impossible. The grossly destructive production sectors play whack-a-mole. Try to reduce the subsidy for fossil fuels and “biomass” pops up. And as we saw, the biomass scam is based on fossil fuels and specifically designed to entrench coal-burning within the “climate” framework.
It’s impossible to go beyond fossil fuels anyway under the framework of modern civilization, since modernity is founded on fossil fuels. The definition of “modern” is: The period of the mass extraction and burning of fossil fuels. Industrialization inherently depends on fossil fuels and all alleged alternatives actually depend on the fossil foundation.
The climate-industrial movement and mainstream environmentalism as a whole want to save the industrial capitalist economy, not the planet. They’re usually explicit about this, citing their desire to save “civilization”, aka the modern production-consumption civilization. Anyone who really wanted to save the planet would have very different goals, very different demands and would organize and act in a very different way.
Mainstream environmentalism is just like a dope fiend trying to negotiate some level of continuing drug binge which somehow wouldn’t be as addictive and destructive as what he’s doing now.
Every prescription, every policy of the climate-industrial movement has zero secular purpose but to Feed the Maw. Maximum production is necessary to satisfy maximum demand, and maximum demand needs to be artificially drummed up to provide a market and “use” for maximum over-supplied production. This hideous circle swirls round and round in the most all-destructive escalating feedback loop. The Paris agreement, and all the works of mainstream Big Green, are dedicated to continuing this vicious circle unto the final lethal exhaustion of Gaia and humanity.
In the meantime they work to misdirect action in order to waste time and good will we no longer have to waste (contrary to the lies about “carbon budgets”), and to sow cynicism among those who might truly want to fight for the Earth, to sow denial that this is possible at all. It’s a massive sheep-dogging and gate-keeping campaign. It’s a big con.
There’s one and only one way to avert the worst of the climate crisis and the ecological crisis as a whole. This way is threefold:
*End all industrial emissions; *Stop destroying sinks; *Rebuild sinks and let natural sinks resume their natural ranges.
This is the only way to avert a total Gaian phase change which almost certainly would cause the biological extinction of hominids (unless we figure out a quicker way to wipe ourselves out), the only way to arrest the ongoing mass extinction, the only way to save anything of humanity.
Of course this would mean the end of industrial civilization, the end of extreme energy consumption, the end of the production-consumption framework, the end of capitalism, the end of grotesque consumerism and materialism. It would also mean the regeneration of health, happiness, and freedom as the only truly human purposes.
Therefore this way is anathema to the modern civilization and its tendrils, including the mainstream corporate environmental tentacle.
Does this faction have any ecological goal at all? With its exaltation of the biomass scam and the campaign to finish modern civilization’s extermination of the forests, we have the final smoking gun, the smoking chainsaw, the smoking ashes of the burned forest. The all-consuming fire, symbolized and fetishized in the tree-burning factory, is the real goal. Thus the climate change movement wants climate change all right. Until industrialization collapses or is abolished through an act of human self-preservation, they will drive global heating, the desert, and the flames of the wildfires as far as these can be driven. Every aspect of the modern civilization is nothing but an aspect of the hatred of life and lust for death.
*This is part of the general fraudulent practice of moving things off the books of the energy (electricity) sector and/or using the term “energy” to stand only for the electrical sector. And it’s part of the overall move of depicting climate change as identical to the ecological crisis as such, with all other elements of this crisis being relegated to non-existence for official purposes. Anytime you see claims about “100% renewable energy”, if you look at the small print you’ll usually find scams like these.
Then we have the broader deception of the whole notion of “renewable energy”. According to 2015 OECD numbers for industrialized countries (as reproduced in the EPN report), what they dub “renewable” makes up less than 10% of their energy production. Of this 9.7%, over 53% is “Biofuels and waste”, i.e. industrial biomass.
But since this all is from newly destroyed natural forest or high-impact industrial farming on land where the natural sink was destroyed, to call this “renewable” is a lie. Therefore over half of what they call “renewable” is the non-renewable (within the industrial framework) destruction of sinks. The other industries called “renewable” – industrial wind, solar, hydro, etc. – also are all directly eco-destructive and depend upon a foundation of fossil fuels. None can be self-sustaining, and none is renewable in any non-Orwellian way. It’s an axiom: Nothing industrial and nothing commodified ever can be renewable.

February 4, 2019

Resource Curse


The Dominion Civilization’s vision for all Earth.

Civilized hominids curse themselves and the Earth whole with their Dominionist tenet of commodity “resources” and assembly-line practice of extracting them, systematically turning vibrance to stasis, life to death.
At this late existential stage of the religious-economic and ecological crisis, a sane government which really wanted the best for the people would launch a crash program to break free of fossil fuel dependency. This is especially true for oil and gas producers like Venezuela, whose dependency on oil exports guarantees they remain at best a US-colonized power, all the while requiring the physical destruction of their own land and the biological basis of their future life.
If a nation has committed itself to:
(1) A de facto colonized extraction-based economy (which also involves physically destroying your own country as profoundly as if from an external military attack);
(2) Which is at the mercy of a global commodity system;
(3) Which is controlled by vastly more powerful forces which are aggressive, militarist bullies under the best of circumstances and are irrationally hostile toward that nation in particular;
Then I don’t see any way to exist other than at the mercy of such hostile forces. I don’t know what possible way out Venezuela has within the framework of the globalized extreme energy civilization.
I’m not just saying this about Venezuela, although its destruction of the Orinoco rain forest which sustains all of our physical lives in order to extract heavy oil is perhaps the most extreme example on Earth of the self-destroying paradigm. The Bolivarians have continued erecting their oil sands necropolis, the rest of their cities being voluntary tributaries of it.
But the same is true of all colonized extraction zones and the people who inhabit them, up to and including America’s death zones of fracking, mountaintop removal coal mining, and the destruction swathes driven by pipelines.
Any country afflicted with the oil curse ought to treat the deposits like very hot radioactive waste and enforce at all costs a Chernobyl-type no-go zone. This also would conserve critical ecologies like the Amazon. If enough places did this simultaneously it would prevent the US from “opening them up” by force and accelerate the collapse of the empire and its globalization system. But any place which doesn’t do this automatically becomes a de facto colony and a target for US aggression intended to turn them into a de jure colony, as we see in Venezuela’s case.
From the evidence it seems that in the end an ideology like Bolivarianism isn’t offering any real alternative to the US paradigm. Both equally want to burn every last fossil BTU’s worth, pump every last Earth-heating CO2 molecule, hack down and burn every last acre of forest. Both are on the same mass murder-suicide ride.
Do the Venezulean people really want no better life than this? The American people sure seem to want the worst, for themselves and everyone else.

February 2, 2019

Venezuela, Russia, Britain, Greece…..America


There is complete consensus on transforming the Amazon to this.

1. The US government openly is trying to overthrow the democratically elected government of Venezuela* for no reason other than because it’s nominally “socialist” (really a hybrid more capitalist than socialist) and simply for the sake of chaos and destruction, which are the primary values and goals of the late-stage Extreme Energy Civilization. The US government simply issued a diktat that Maduro is not the real president of Venezuela, while some geek who was never even a candidate, who has no broad political support at all, who a large proportion of Venezuelans had never heard of before, but who was brought to the US and put through one of its Chicago Boy-type stooge-training programs, is in fact the real president.
[*At any rate Maduro has more democratic legitimacy, in terms of the transparency of ballots and the percentage of votes received from the electorate, than US president Trump, prior US presidents Obama, Bush, Clinton and most others, UK prime minister May, French premier Macron, German premier Merkel, and most other Western executive officers. Electoralism is not a value at this site, but all these governments and political habitats starting with the US profess electoral “democracy” as the highest political value, so as always we hold them to their own standard. By the United States’ own standard, Venezuelan democracy is far more legitimate than that of the US, and Maduro is one of the most legitimate heads of state on earth.]
The US is heading up a coalition of anti-democracy regime changers. Like synchronized swimmers the EU and almost all Western governments issued statements recognizing Guano or whatever his name is as the legitimate president. In the US both halves of the Imperial One-Party and the entire political-cultural-academic-media class all rushed as one to condemn Venezuelan democracy and support the incipient US coup with the inevitable destruction of the country and its people guaranteed to follow. To be as symbolically explicit as possible, Trump dug up Elliot Abrams, overseer of the Nicaraguan “Contra” death squad campaign, to be architect of the terror campaign the US plans for Venezuela.
Although Democrats have a deranged personal hatred for Trump and oppose almost anything he does (almost all of which is substantively the same as Obama policy), including Trump’s announcement that he plans to withdraw US troops from Syria and Venezuela (I’ll believe it when they’re actually out; but in the meantime Trump gave the occasion for the liberals as a whole to demonstrate their rabid lust for maximal war), the one point of friendship where they’ll joyously join hands and sing with him is an incipient new imperial adventure, new war, new bloodbath.
The US already has been waging murderous war on Venezuela’s people for twenty years through economic sanctions. Democrats have all the same blood on their hands as Republicans already, but as we saw with their sanctions war on the Iraqi people which murdered over half a million children, there’s no amount of dead which can satisfy Democrat blood-lust. As one of their most respected and revered moral leaders has said of this genocide against children, “We think it was worth it.”
Now they want to escalate the war to total physical destruction. The Democrat Party speaks as one on this. The fake “insurgents” did their best to dodge any comment at all. Only when pressed did the likes of Bernie Sanders speak out, and when they did it was to regurgitate Trump’s lies. Only lamely at the end did some of them say “nevertheless the US shouldn’t interfere”. Of course the sanctions they’ve all supported have constituted massively interference all along. They’re the direct cause of most of Venezuela’s economic chaos and suffering. Of course, in standard disaster capitalist practice, US propaganda blames the victim for the disaster that the US itself directly caused. The entire US political class – both parties, their partisans, the entire media – mouths this lie as one.
The evidence record is that the US corporate state, both flavors of the Destruction One-Party, the entire US political-cultural-media class have no goal other than complete destruction in every way. I can’t think of a single way in which US policy, and the overall US culture, isn’t committed to destroying as much of humanity and the Earth as possible, for nothing but destruction for its own sake. It’s certainly not for any alleged benefits of power or wealth; it’s clear that none of these psychopaths could ever be satisfied in any way with anything less than the infinite.
The only thing they’re stopping short of, so far, is a nuclear first strike. But it a guarantee they’ll come to this as well if things keep going like this.
2. Part of the general situation today for globalization and empire:
“Of all areas of global power politics today, international finance and foreign investment have become the key flashpoint. International monetary reserves were supposed to be the most sacrosanct, and international debt enforcement closely associated.
Central banks have long held their gold and other monetary reserves in the United States and London. Back in 1945 this seemed reasonable, because the New York Federal Reserve Bank (in whose basement foreign central bank gold was kept) was militarily safe, and because the London Gold Pool was the vehicle by which the U.S. Treasury kept the dollar “as good as gold” at $35 an ounce. Foreign reserves over and above gold were kept in the form of U.S. Treasury securities, to be bought and sold on the New York and London foreign-exchange markets to stabilize exchange rates. Most foreign loans to governments were denominated in U.S. dollars, so Wall Street banks were normally named as paying agents.
That was the case with Iran under the Shah, whom the United States had installed after sponsoring the 1953 coup against Mohammed Mosaddegh when he sought to nationalize Anglo-Iranian Oil (now British Petroleum) or at least tax it. After the Shah was overthrown, the Khomeini regime asked its paying agent, the Chase Manhattan bank, to use its deposits to pay its bondholders. At the direction of the U.S. Government, Chase refused to do so. U.S. courts then declared Iran to be in default, and froze all its assets in the United States and anywhere else they could.
This showed that international finance was an arm of the U.S. State Department and Pentagon.”
At least as early as 1979 (when the Pentagon seized and re-sold weaponry Iran already had paid for) the world has known that the US government and international banks will engage at will in outright robbery of assets legally deposited within the US-dominated system. In spite of this knowledge Venezuela’s Bolivarian government has been unflaggingly in its desire to be part of this system and therefore has been victimized by it repeatedly. In December 2018 the Bank of England simply stole $11 billion worth of Venezuelan gold deposits. It refused to follow the Venezuelan central bank’s instructions to begin to transfer the gold and told them it would no longer respond to any communications from Venezuela. This is straight robbery, straight organized crime, straight gangsterism. But it’s neither new, nor surprising, nor unexpected. Obviously Venezuela was willing to run this risk for the privilege of participation in the global economy of total destruction.
As we’ve seen so many times, participation in globalization is a badly misguided commitment for any nation vulnerable to economic and physical aggression, or any nation who is merely one of the passengers along for the commodity globalization ride (often an extremely tempestuous ride) rather than one of the drivers.
I’ve written many times how it’s especially insane to relinquish one’s food security and self-sufficiency in food by subjecting food production to any commodity system. The national governments which have done this and all propagandists everywhere who have supported it are Nuremburg-level criminals.
It’s similarly insane for a nation to subject itself to colonial dependency by basing its economy on “resource extraction” (including the physical destruction of one’s own land), with these extracted materials then placed on the global commodity market. Thus a people willingly enslaves itself to the global finance system and the whims of Washington. Why not just offer to become de jure slaves on the estates of the banksters? (Libertarian ideology offers baroque justifications for voluntarily selling oneself into slavery.)
It would be bad enough to physically destroy your own country to extract oil for your own use. To do so in order to put the oil on the global commodity market is insanity. But then all modern governments, and all cultural-political elites among all peoples who have such elites, are insane.
Venezuela including its so-called “socialist” government is a willing, eager participant in the capitalist globalization system.** As are Russia and China, so often touted as alleged opponents of this system. In reality all the actions of Russia, China, Venezuela, and other officially designated “enemies” prove that these governments never wanted to challenge US-led globalization and don’t want to challenge it even now. All they want is to take what they see as their rightful place within the system and be treated accordingly. Only the flat-out totalitarian lunacy of US bullying and aggression is forcing these countries into the de facto position of challengers and therefore rivals if not enemies. In the same way that only US aggression has created Muslim terrorists, so only US aggression has created any opposition at all to US domination of the globalization system. And there’s still no systematic opposition anywhere on earth to globalization as such, other than the rising opposition and counterattack of the Earth itself.
Like anyone else, the people of Venezuela would be vastly better off if they had neither oil nor gold. That’s why it’s called the resource curse. Humanity as a whole would be infinitely better off if fossil fuels never had existed, and if nothing existed which could have been made to play the role gold has played.
People don’t eat oil or gold, they eat food, which they’re perfectly capable of growing for themselves if they choose. The problem of the Venezuelans, Greeks, and so on up to the Americans themselves, is that they want all the worthless Earth-destroying material junk instead of health, happiness, and freedom. I recall well how the people of Greece were targeted for economic destruction in order to bail out German banks, how they wailed and cried about this, how they voted to oppose the Troika’s austerity program, and yet how after all that they still opposed leaving the EU. They just couldn’t conceive of a world without merely the idea of “free trade” in allegedly-less-expensive worthless Earth-destroying junk. Never mind that they were dooming themselves to impoverishment and wouldn’t able to buy the junk anyway.
This is the self-enslavement of the production-consumption religious insanity which is the core psychic force driving globalization and modern civilization itself. That’s why all civilized masses (“nations”) are made up of slaves who wallow amid cancer-giving poison. That’s why the Greeks immolated themselves. That’s why the Russians still temporize. That’s why Bolivarian Venezuela practically poised itself for the war crisis it now faces. And that’s why all civilized peoples have shackled themselves to an unsustainable mode of agriculture where they are in fact eating oil, figuratively and physically (the diet is loaded with fossil-derived plastics and pesticides and other toxins) but which will soon collapse leaving them to starve in earnest. Because they chose slavery over freedom.
As for the American Mordor itself, the gaslight-pulsing glowing-plutonium core of the global psychosis, the American people are doing the same thing. They’re surrendering their lands as sacrifice zones to fracking and pipelines, to poison plantations and state-wide fire traps, all to produce globalized commodities usually earmarked to send to Asia or Europe. Mr. MAGA, of course, wants to destroy even more American land to send liquid natural gas to Europe at taxpayer-funded below-cost prices. Just as all US logging, mining, and fossil fuel extraction is done at a massive loss which the taxpayers make up. The voters vote for it unanimously every time. Nor does there exist any alternative within US electoralism. America has terminal cancer of the body and soul. This places the domestic political depravity I discussed above in its biological, existential context.
If you’re colonized, don’t have your own currency, and want to buy all the worthless expensive junk the colonial power is peddling, you’re going to be enslaved by debt and subject to imperial terror and aggression. The Venezuelans and Americans are colonized. The Venezuelan currency depends on its ability to sell dollar-denominated oil which is as good as having no currency. Of course the American 99% have no control over the dollar and therefore no native currency. The Greeks, Italian, Iberians, Irish, and the rest of the EU have no currency of their own. (Except Germany itself, which has transformed the euro into a de facto German-controlled currency. Thus by a longer and more convoluted route the German elites have attained the economic goals of WWII.) The one and only way for a people to free itself is to end their self-enslavement, end all their dependencies and addictions, and renounce the lust for junk, including the self-jubilation of all debts.
Self-enslavement scales well, from individual to the people of a country to the “New World Order” of corporate globalization fantasy: One can wish to live like a human being, which makes it possible to live within one’s means while enjoying health, happiness, freedom, and peace; or one can surrender to the productionist/consumerist derangement, renounce all human measure and hopes, set one’s desires at infinity and set out on the death march of rat-racing and debt, never attaining anything but increasing clutter, waste dumps, dependency, insecurity, ill-health, unhappiness, and fear.
All the peoples of all colonized lands, including the peoples of America and the West itself, will have to make the choice truly to free themselves if freedom and security is truly what they wish. All versions of the “we can have it all” fraud comprise the same lie, a symptom of the general pathology of Babylon. On the contrary, those who try to have it all, gamble for the infinite, guarantee themselves one terminal end. The global productionist system has one fated end for everyone on Earth from the colonized South to the gradually fading Western middle class: Debt slavery and the total destruction of food security, amid total ecological devastation.
We’re undergoing the great spiritual, economic, ecological, existential crisis of the terminal Oil Age. We cannot solve the crisis of mortality by suicide or murder. We can solve it only by changing our lives, choosing what lets us live, renouncing what is killing us.
**The fact that it’s still possible to use the term “socialist” for ecologically destructive, oil-extraction-dependent (therefore by definition colonial) systems is a perfect example of why I renounced “the left”. Just as it’s a fact that anything truly feminist, anti-racist, anti-imperialist has to be socialist, so it’s also true that ecological socialism is a redundant term. It’s not possible to separate ecological domination from social domination. The two invariably go hand in hand. Of course a capitalist hybrid system like that of Venezuela, or like what the Bernbots claim to want in the US, isn’t socialist even from a purely human-centric point of view. Meanwhile “the left” as a whole has renounced even anti-globalism, as we’ve seen with its complete dereliction on Brexit. Here was an opportunity to seize the controversy, to place the referendum in the context of anti-globalization and democracy vs. the technocracy represented by the European Commission, to put a socialist Brexit on the agenda, and the leftists all ran home to globalist mama. They did it for the same reason as the gilded youth of London, the same reason as always: In their indelible corruption they feared their worthless “stuff” might cost a bit more, or their swank weekends in Spain wouldn’t go as seamlessly, or that it wouldn’t be as easy to go job-hunting around the continent for parasitic global-corporate-system jobs. (Needless to say no real kind of human work, work which by its nature is bound up with a geographical region, was enhanced by EU-style globalization, quite the contrary.) In addition to allegedly opposing globalism and corporate rule, I also thought leftism was supposed to oppose the employer-“job” model as such.
No, the left offers no alternative, and no way out of the all-encompassing existential crisis of humanity and Earth.
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