When Joe Biden successfully explained America

US President Joe Biden claimed on camera that “America” can be defined with a single word, before mumbling unintelligibly.

There is, of course, the fact that nothing can actually be defined with a single word, because successfully giving another word merely amounts to providing a synonym rather than a definition. Despite that, Biden was in some ways revealing a truth when he mumbled unintelligibly as a way of describing what America represents.

Biden may have meant to say freedom or constitutionality, or some special word combining both to present some firm principle the nation stands for, but America stands for no principles, so such content might as well have been garbled.

Why stand for principles, when there is power?

America is currently standing for something unintelligible and apparently garbled, as it represents no firm principles on any issue whatsoever. Principles are simply the enemies of power, and America loves power.

The willingness to stand for nothing would not normally be a problem for a national government, which is simply the governing authority over a piece of terrain. However, it is a problem for the United States, which keeps trying to declare that it stands for some principle or another, before promptly stepping on that principle like a rake and being accused of hypocrisy, because it loves power.

Hypocrisy in American rule is most obvious in international affairs, where the US does whatever augments its power (from coups to invasions) and confusingly describes it as somehow an advancement of “freedom” while decrying similar excesses by anyone else.

The best example of the US failing to represent anything may be in the fallout over the events of January 6, 2021. In those events, one side represented freedom and the other side represented the lawful authority, and yet both ended up encapsulating the contradiction inherent to any ruling regime that declares freedom its central value.

A demented ideology

The United States doesn’t just have a demented leader. The idea of these two cohabiting values of liberty and regime loyalty is a demented one in the first place, and the source of every political argument in the United States from the moment it was created in resistance to British rule, to the Civil War, to the January 6 events, to the current noxious political movements in America.

The US is only capable of presenting a demented, paradoxical vision that sows the seeds of crisis and civil war at home and abroad, making its international influence fundamentally destabilising. Rather than being a clever plot, the destruction wrought by US involvement overseas is actually just the result of the country's own incompetence and confusion, born of the contradiction of trying to have a liberal-authoritarian ideology.

The American empire is the creator of its own problems. It is inherently unstable and continuously sabotaged by itself, despite innumerable chances at world domination, because its current regime is based on a bizarre paradox of liberal rhetoric and authoritarian power, meaning it can produce no stable order or even be properly understood by its own supporters.

Far from being exceptional, America is just another country that will come and go, an accident born of accidents, with no sensible inscribed principles that ever made it superior to anyone.

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UK reliance on European military industry is foolish

Despite the UK presenting itself as the leading defender of Europe, Britain’s armoured vehicle production and repair is going to increasingly take place in Germany, as is shown by British interest in the “Eurotank” project as the means to get a new Main Battle Tank.

However impressive the Eurotank will be, interdependence with the continent we are meant to defend could be a major weakness. We already rely on the Germans to upgrade our panzers at their workshops, somehow managing to brag about it in the process.

We also aim to replace our Infantry Fighting Vehicles (IFVs) with Franco-German wheeled designs, rather than choosing to continue the history of unique and iconic British armoured vehicle designs. Bear in mind that the French and Germans were historic enemies of Britain, at different eras, and the current state of affairs is tantamount to British troops dressing in enemy uniforms.

Europe is no haven

From a historically savvy perspective, Britain growing reliant on German help with armoured vehicles is similar to defeat and demilitarisation at German hands, since no wise British leadership would ever have allowed the Germans or French to seize British military production capabilities and take them to their countries. Especially in a place as historically volatile as Europe, which is already undergoing significant disruption due to the Ukrainian conflict and could face an increasingly violent and destabilised future, which is historically normal for the Continent.

Europe, and Germany particularly, also have a strong historical tendency to instability and conflict that goes all the way back to the Thirty Years' War and perhaps earlier. European integration has been a fact for so little time that to think it is permanent is premature and immature. The advantage of Great Britain has always been its isolation from the contagion of European conflict, by the sea.

Even assuming the UK never returns to an era of tension with the Germans or French, it is still a fact that having our military production and repair facilities be in Germany potentially magnifies security and strategic problems, from espionage to the possibility of Germany itself being simply misgoverned and overrun with conflicts or political intrigue in the future. If things get bad in Europe, they could unnecessarily imperil British national security if we are reliant on sites there for defence production and repair.

UK arms production and repair capability being located in a non-nuclear country such as Germany is also problematic because it creates the possibility that our war production could be wiped out, without being protected by our nuclear deterrent. NATO does not necessarily protect Germany from all conflict scenarios, including nuclear ones, with the reliability that the British nuclear deterrent has.

The hollowness of Brexit

Britain’s disinterest in being an independent arms producer, and increased interest in partnering with the French and Germans instead, makes Brexit less significant, nay meaningless, in terms of turning the country into an independent strategic player. Moreover, it reveals that those in business and government who decide our priorities are merely resentful about the departure from the EU and want to do everything to offset any impact on our trajectory as a country.

British government and corporate elites have no real thought for national security. They don’t see our island as anything more than a shabby council estate that is to be left behind, to pursue their interests via the United States and the European Union or via supranational organisations like NATO. This may suit them, but it does not suit future generations who will emerge in a country that has no brand, no pride, and no security, being little more than a dump for foreign powers.

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Journalist goes to dungeon, as scribblers embrace war

Julian Assange is expected to be extradited soon, once the order is approved.

At the same time, the loyalist war hysteria related to the fighting in Ukraine dominates what is left of a supposedly free press. It should be noted that while Assange faces punishment, the journalists presented as legitimate by governments and the media are increasingly deranged and embrace violence, wishing all manner of censorship, adversity and even death on people who disagree with them.

Sponsored screeds

Jean-Paul Marat referred to a majority of journalists as “prostituted scribblers” who come to the aid of whoever is able to buy the most power or wealth, to be sycophants. This is most clearly the case in the United States and the United Kingdom alike, where approving and getting behind the most heavily sponsored “cause” as its cheerleader is now the only recognised or approved form of journalism.

In Ukraine, our journalists may simply be the photographers of corpses, on hand to be sent wherever a dead body is found, to photograph it and caption it as the work of the “aggressors”, thus rewarding whoever found the corpse and drinking the propaganda of the blood, regardless of how such a body came about and scarcely with any interest in its former identity.

Dominant discourse

Most of the labelled “independent media” appears to be falsely labelled thus, and a majority of “journalists” seem not to be journalists but in fact vile combatants, who would deserve no protection internationally and in fact their death or absence would have no effect on people’s access to truth, and may even be met with cheer. The same cannot be said of the victim of the state, Assange, whose very punishment is the result of him increasing people’s access to truth (that much is not denied even by governments themselves, which hold it against him, preferring instead scribblers who parrot their justifications for increased murder and misery).

One can only hope things are not so bad.
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Let Solomon Islands choose its alliances freely

Hysterical responses to the Solomon Islands signing a security agreement with China reveal hypocrisy over the Ukraine crisis of 2014 and subsequent conflict of 2022.

NATO’s Secretary General stated that the defining struggle in the world has become one of big powers forcing smaller powers to serve their interests, or letting them choose their own path, arguing that the Western alliance group is firmly in favour of free choice.

The argument was clear: Russia was behaving very irregularly and violating national sovereignty, by expecting to have any say on hostile troop deployments into countries adjacent to it.

Nothing At All Treaty Organisation

Unfortunately for NATO, such firm principles for which the world's most powerful military alliance stood were inadvertently denounced and shown to be utter nonsense by NATO countries. As soon as the Solomon Islands chose to align with China on its own free will, the US issued warnings of unspecified consequences. Therefore, it became suddenly unacceptable for nations to align in any way against others.

The hypocrisy on display now proves that the attempt of NATO governments to stand and fight for any set of principles at all could not last much more than a couple of months. This powerful alliance is proved to not stand for anything, much as the US’s own ideology is confused and America immediately steps on its own commitments like rakes, as soon as it tries to lay them down.

Menaces to democracy

The Solomon Islands may have chosen to side with China entirely of its own free will. Ukraine, in contrast, only sought alignment with NATO and the EU after extensive interference in its internal affairs and a violent takeover supervised by Western officials in 2014.

The Solomon Islands is now to be portrayed as some sort of threat to democracy, merely by the fact it is inconvenient to the West (i.e. "democracy"). In reality, the country is a democracy threatened by coercive Western powers that clearly have no interest in the wishes of the people.

One would be wise to expect fake mass protests sponsored and led from US diplomatic buildings in the Solomon Islands, covered by all the cable news channels and praised by them. In addition, expect any scale of bribery and attempts to subvert the wishes of the people of that land, perhaps in the months or even weeks to come.

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The best Elon could do to Twitter

Elon Musk seeks to own Twitter and make it a platform for free speech around the world. This certainly is not its reputation at the moment, although it seemed like it in the past.

Many of us (especially if we are at least 30 or older) remember a time when the internet was an experiment in anarchy, rather than a prison of control. It easily seems natural to us that the current extent of control and filtering of content on social networks is just an unwelcome anomaly in what should be the course of human progress to greater liberty and exposure.

Contrary to my wishes, as well as Elon Musk's, Noughties-style online freedom probably isn't really our destiny but just a historical blip. History indicates that any technologically-endowed freedom is likely to only ever be a fleeting thing before some authorities reassert the primacy of the law, but that pattern is a topic for another day.

Restoring Trump?

The political right has rallied around Musk's attempts to take over Twitter. They seem to see a way to get their beloved Donald Trump’s account restored, after so-called "Big Tech" exercised its power in favour of the Democratic Party by suspending his Twitter account towards the end of the 2020 US presidential election.

Whatever happens to Twitter is likely to serve interest groups in the United States, first and foremost the government itself. Although it likely remains the world's most politically influential website or application, Twitter has become little more than a channel for amplifying and rewarding views approved by or entirely constructed by United States government bodies. With time, it has increasingly  aligned with the US government on every issue and teamed up against regimes the US is targeting.

It has reached a point now that, if any other country is as vigilant as the United States about guarding against foreign political interference, such a country will ban Twitter without hesitation.

A dead end

Although Musk's ownership of Twitter may be beneficial to independent media and dissident voices, Twitter is dead. Despite retaining its influence as nothing more than inertia from a prior model under which it succeeded, almost all media stories that succeed there now are artificially boosted by the platform, and are from nauseatingly familiar sources.

Twitter is now little more than an aggregator for common American cable news channels, showcasing the content of such channels as its main attraction, as a way of recapturing the audiences that fled them and suppressing or banning other content wherever possible. Twitter may have, actually, been infiltrated by and bent to the will of journalists hellbent on restoring Iraq War-era levels of manipulation of the public.

The best Elon Musk ought to do is sabotage what Twitter has become, if he can, but the tech companies will never tolerate the return to the wilderness the internet once was. Immediately after Musk unblocks and unbans any content, there will be pressure on the app stores to remove Twitter. Following this, the platform will be effectively destroyed and fade into obscurity.

To set in motion the destruction of Twitter would wipe a stain from the internet, and be a huge favour from Elon Musk if it is achieved. Twitter, like most social networks, is no longer of any benefit to society or human relationships, being a false afterimage of former creativity.

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Keir Starmer's bad sell makes Tory sins forgivable

Keir Starmer recently pointed out that Boris Johnson is a liar and has broken the law, pitching himself once again as a more moral character, an alternative to Johnson.

This seems to be Starmer’s main platform now. He is not Boris Johnson, in the same way Biden’s platform was to not be Donald Trump. It represents, in some ways, our descent as a country into American levels of immaturity.

Protesting too much

Starmer does not commit himself to anything and has broken his pledges. He is in some ways worse than Boris Johnson, because he refuses to apologise or acknowledge any fault, which makes him more like Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton than Johnson is. This is a type of person who sells his own moral character as his only redeeming quality, but that product is ultimately a dud.

Boris Johnson broke the law, but is paying penalties accordingly. As such, it is hard to agree with Starmer's calls that he should step down, much less that Starmer himself is the ideal replacement product. The reality is that we let people with power get away with some things, and it will be the same for Starmer if he becomes PM, and he would expect nothing less.

There is no reason to think that the loss of his job, even if it is the top job, is somehow also necessary. Johnson breaking lockdown rules did nothing to mismanage the country. If he did not mismanage the country, as appears to be the case from Starmer’s inability to locate the fault or give any argument other than saying the PM is a knave, then Starmer’s kind of political opposition really has nothing to offer.

Whose fault is this?

We are left with some questions.

Has politics and systemic political opposition in the UK become Americanised, to a point that it now focuses entirely on the character of the Prime Minister and the supposed alternative to him? Are we all going to vote for "not Boris" at the next general election, only to elect a plank of wood?

Whose fault is this deterioration, if it is so? The American political culture affects us, to a large part, thanks to a shared English-speaking media. People cannot be blamed, if their ability to think maturely about politics has been ruined by their consumption of American media and stupid debates that amount to nothing more than name-calling sessions.

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Frenchness, faith and the presidential election

The second round of the French presidential election is due on 24 April, and the imperilled identity of the country is the one indisputable thing that a majority of French seem to agree on.

Both rival candidates, Emmanuel Macron and Marine Le Pen, are controversial, especially when it comes to their relations with French Muslims. Who is perhaps worse is not entirely clear.

Two demagogues?

Marine Le Pen compared Muslims praying in the streets, with the German occupation of the country. Emmanuel Macron stigmatises Muslims and cracks down on those who raise their voices in opposition to this. In addition, who can forget his steadfast defence of offensive drawings of the Islamic Prophet Mohammed?

Worst of all for French Muslims could be Macron's goal to rewrite Islam to be more liberal and appropriate to his vision of France. He also made an effort to close the French Council of the Muslim Faith, dissatisfied with it and with any perceived foreign influence, including simply the international communion that exists between believers across the world.

Unfortunately, France should simply be considered hostile to Islam. Between the two presidential candidates, Macron might be the more insidious, trying to actively distort Islam and interfere in the freedom of conscience.

Le Pen, despite probably having a more negative reputation with Muslims (similar to Trump), is just old-fashioned rather than insidious. She would not likely try to interfere in and pervert other people's faith, even if her policies would be more directly confrontational with France’s Muslim community, with such absurd measures as fines for wearing headscarves. It is also noticeable that Macron is a zealous Israel-supporter, going as far as to label Israel critics as enemies of the Republic, a bizarre attack that strikes directly at the consciences of Muslims more than Le Pen has done.

Civilisation anxiety justified?

Regardless of the outcome of the presidential election, France will struggle to reconcile the consequences of its imperialism and its attempts to maintain a culturally uniform nation-state. This could eventually result in separatism and violence in decades to come.

France’s differences from Britain are that Britain is not a secular state, and Britain accepted its overseas people as distinct cultures, with little interest in assimilation, as there is no Britishness to assimilate into (all aspects of our identity, from food to flags and even the Union itself, are the cumulative imperial booty acquired by Norman conquerors, so there is no core Britishness to be anxious about, like the core Frenchness).

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US seems to want Russia to nuke Ukraine

The sinking of the Moskva and several concurrent strikes on Russian border towns by Ukraine seem like a coordinated escalation aiming to provoke a like response from Russia.

Whether it is its intention or not, Ukraine's actions will probably result in the Russian public wanting an increased use of force in Ukraine, which had been held back due to Russian President Vladimir Putin’s assertions that the Russians and Ukrainians are a common people.

Deliberately goading Russian escalation

The United States will help Ukraine to target disputed Crimea, considered core Russian territory by Moscow. The US may not recognise Russian sovereignty over Crimea, but the Russian government does. Therefore, should such strikes occur, they will be considered no different than strikes on the centre of Moscow ordered from Washington.

Even as it engages in the above risky policy, the United States is giving CBRN (chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear) suits to Ukraine, as if to prepare them to fight in radioactive wastelands. It seems as though the Ukrainians, led by the US, are expected to destroy their own country to save it, just to assert their nationalistic zeal.

The United States speculates openly about when Russia will get desperate enough to use a tactical nuclear weapon. Based on the tone, it seems as if they are certain it will happen, and are willing to maintain all policies with no interest in preventing it.

Scorched earth?

All of this shows clearly that the United States doesn’t stand with the people of Ukraine. It is primarily looking at frustrating Russia rather than preventing harm to Ukraine. Someone who stands with the people of Ukraine would not want it to become a nuclear wasteland, nor would they even believe it is wise for it to fight Russia in the first place.

But what does the US gain from nuclear detonations in Kiev, or elsewhere in Ukraine? We can only suppose the US might want this outcome just to incriminate Moscow and to convince the world of Western moral superiority, as the US had previously been the only country to ever use nuclear weapons in a war (a fact rival countries like to remind it of). It may also secretly view Ukraine as Russian territory, itself, and be wanting the lands burned and uninhabitable to punish the Russians.

If the US believes its power is in terminal decline, it might believe that incriminating a rival regime in the most barbaric act of the Twenty-First Century would give the United States vast moral authority against such rival regimes. Ultimately, it could mean excluding such regimes from the United Nations entirely, giving total control of the international system to Washington.

Russian and Chinese restraint

Russia seems not likely to use nuclear weapons yet, as there is no sign it is even interested in a troop surge or a strategic bombing campaign yet, although Russian generals suggested they could target Ukraine’s decision-making centres.

The US is encouraging conflicts at the peripheries of its rivals, while confusing gullible audiences at it home that it is somehow deterring aggressors. The same is certainly true of Taiwan, where almost the exact same policy is being pursued, despite it spectacularly failing to prevent conflict in Ukraine. This shows they are not sincere about preventing conflicts, in fact seeking conflicts and building traps at the doorsteps of their rivals in the hope to weaken them.

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Wars will cool, as blonde-haired people complain

In a previous post, I stated that a hot war in the Global North is good news for the Global South, which will get a break from US-imposed and Western-encouraged violence.

The pause in the Western-backed regime change effort in Ethiopia, diluting and hijacking the cause of people of Tigray as a proxy force, has held. A truce, between the government in Addis Ababa and the Tigrayan rebels, has been successfully sustained, to the relief of millions of people.

Yemeni peace on the horizon

Another bombed and impoverished land, Yemen, also experienced relief as of the start of this month. Coinciding with the Ramadan ceasefire, the aged former president Abdrabbuh Mansur Hadi stepped down on 7 April, entirely removing the purpose of the US-backed Saudi military intervention into the country and further robbing the UN-recognised regime of credibility. This was inevitable from the day the bombs first exploded above the ears of that oppressed nation.

But Saudi Arabia need not be berated, nor should it necessarily feel any further wrath for its part in a grave crime. From the start, they were only doing the bidding of the United States. Also coinciding with the cessation of hostilities in long-suffering Yemen was the mockery of the United States President, for the first time, on Saudi television.

Preceding the developments in Yemen, was the refusal of both the Saudi and Emirati leaders to talk to the US President about oil. Therefore, much as predicted in an earlier post here, it may be Mohammed bin Salman himself who shall lead his country's revolution in the wake of a conclusion so unfavourable to the United States in Yemen.

The timing of the cooling off of the conflicts is aligned, spectacularly well, with the diversion of US attention to Europe. For a change, the Global South seems to be getting safer.

Is the "purveyor of violence" distracted?

Is a trend towards peaceful settlements and cooperation now growing internationally, prompted by the increased distraction of the United States and its allies by the conflict in Europe? Now that people with blue eyes and blonde hair are being killed, quite regrettably, might people with dark tones of skin now finally be given a break?

With a sufficient pause to rebuild themselves after a foreign-imposed war of intrigue, could nations regain their splendour, pride and dignity, such that they are the envy of others, and such that they are truly able to calculate what they were robbed of?

Could the partial withdrawal of evil from Africa and the Middle East be evidence of where it emanates? Could the successful ceasefires, when US interest is diverted away, be evidence that, as asserted once by Dr Martin Luther King Jr., the United States is “the greatest purveyor of violence in the world”? Could it be that rather than being confronted spontaneously by random villains such as Saddam Hussein or Vladimir Putin, the United States is itself the single concentration of world evil?

The common denominator in world conflicts is the United States. The United States is engaged in every conflict or has taken a side in some way, suggesting its own regime is the vile source from which violence, coercion and killing emanate.

Upon realising the above, will nations take steps to fortify themselves against the supreme international evil and prevent it from returning to desecrate their innocent land?

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On Imran Khan's fight against international evil

The much-loved (now former) Prime Minister of Pakistan Imran Khan maintains a demand for a snap election in his country.

The case that had been made against Mr Khan's PTI-led government focused on the idea that he was not delivering economically, and that his popularity was in decline. It was a case amplified by the international media, primarily from the United States, to the benefit of the then-opposition.

Why not put Imran Khan to the test?

Regardless of how the United States and its local toadies may feel about Mr Khan, large-scale rallies on the ground tell a starkly different story than theirs. These rallies indicate more than nationwide discontent at the no-confidence vote that removed him, they suggest a real national awakening and peaceful national liberation struggle against the country's foreign shackles.

Strangely, smaller rallies are often cited by the United States as a reason for immediate regime change. The difference, of course, is that in other cases, the United States was likely supporting fake demonstrations or violent riots by its local mercenaries and clients, having no real interest in the democratic will of any nation.

The fear of the new regime towards the people is on display. In the first place, Imran Khan's opponents and the Supreme Court torpedoed the possibility of taking any grievances about the PTI's governance to the people with an election. A no-confidence vote to remove him was preferred, and the idea of an election was resented, because the ones responsible seem to avoid the will of the people.

Conspiracy or compromise?

While the military denies that the US conspired to remove Imran Khan by encouraging the no confidence vote, no denial has been made that the US was calling for the no confidence vote or that the whole thing was their idea. One can argue about the semantics of such things as treason and conspiracies, but if the US declared the need for the no confidence vote, then the individuals in Parliament who complied are impossible to view favourably, and it is perhaps more alarming that the military would make excuses for them.

The urgently needed general election, even if the new regime agrees to hold it, can be expected to take a long time. The Pakistan Electoral Commission (ECP) had already suggested an extensive delay of months, even when Mr Khan was still PM. It is possible that the bodies of the state not only abandoned Imran Khan but also, for whatever reason, are determined to be deaf to the wishes of the people.

The US desired policy shifts in Islamabad to help it break the international isolation faced by the Western alliance group from the rest of the world in its efforts to condemn Russia and China. There is reason to believe that such policy shifts (likely a complete departure from alliances with China in favour of the US) will not be achieved, even with Imran Khan gone, as these would likely be too economically costly to the country.

Evil by weakness

We should consider the self-serving and poor moral character of the new regime. The new PM, Shehbaz Sharif, already issued a diplomatic passport to his brother Nawaz Sharif, who had been the subject of corruption probes. So now you have a regime that, while unmoved by the people or any need to gain legitimacy with them, is moved at once to save a corrupt individual as its first act.

Despite all of the above, it still seems possible that to assert that the new regime is fully loyal to the United States would be an exaggeration. Nevertheless, the leadership this regime represents is now one that is more susceptible to manipulation and corruption. It is compromised.

It may be unfair to call the new PM evil, but what is happening in Pakistan is a clear and obvious struggle between good and evil. It is, more scientifically, a conflict between the ones standing for independence, prosperity and defiance, and the opponents who succumb to weakness, corruption and subservience too easily.

Refusal to be slaves

Imran Khan may be out as Prime Minister, but Pakistanis will grow increasingly aware of foreign interference and the foreign role in manifestations of corruption and treachery. It is likely that increasing numbers will want something to be done, and will at least wonder how different things might be if the country rid itself of all foreign-inspired intrigue.

The darkest talk surrounds the suspicion that there may be a threat to Imran Khan's life or to the wellbeing of his supporters, as the US tries to suppress a nation that defied them. However, this would be playing with fire. Regardless of what the new regime wants to be, the Pakistani people won't be slaves, at least knowingly.

People should watch, with great suspicion, attempts to contrive some character assassination or criminal case against Imran Khan in an effort to reduce his popular support, with the collusion of the international media. Rather than actual assassination, this seems more likely. It will be undertaken if the people grow quiet, refusing to counterpunch but allowing the corrupt elite and the collaborators of international evil to make their next move.

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On Rishi Sunak and "one rule for them..."

Somehow, we seem to tolerate lower standards of behaviour from those at the top of an organisation than those of lower rank. It's as if, the higher you go, the more dishonest or incompetent you are permitted to be.

The expression of grumbling people goes, "one rule for them, one rule for us".

Rule of the incompetent?

From Hillary Clinton's use of a private email server for government purposes, to Boris Johnson's lockdown parties and Rishi Sunak's wife Akshata Murty's tax avoidance, there seems to be no shortage of recent scandals with politicians proving apparently less competent or diligent than a fresh civil servant.

In the case of Boris Johnson's parties, it was aide and spokesperson Allegra Stratton who ended up tearfully resigning, rather than the Prime Minister many believed should make his own exit. Just like that, all too often, it is the people of a lower rank and significantly less responsibility who end up making exactly such a tearful exit from their role, while those with the ability to wreak havoc remain secure at the top of an organisation, despite their bumbling.

If one is sufficiently powerful, one may even be promoted to ever higher and higher roles, despite sackable levels of incompetence being continuously on display. Many within the UK Civil Service complain that this occurs within their organisations, at all sorts of places far less significant than Downing Street.

Privilege and informal aristocracy

The answer may be, simply, privilege. Ever since the days of feudal authority, from which the presently established authority in the UK evolved without any interruption (an interruption like, say, the Revolution in France), the rulers (or in military terms, officers) were entitled to things others were not. They were allowed to fail, too, with fewer consequences.

Being of a higher class or caste has no meaning, unless it means all sorts of consequences are lighter for you than others. That being said, the UK has been able to function well throughout our history. Therefore, the existence of the unaccountable, informal (or even formal) aristocrats can't really be impairing the ability of organisations to work effectively, even in the public interest.

It is easy, when reading such things as the above, to feel a kind of rage against those people in the unaccountable class or caste, but our rage may then blind us to this socially unjust system's possible utility. Countries that became too enamoured with equality and overthrew their privileged unaccountable class, such as France or Russia, did in fact experience a kind of administrative and military inefficiency for a period of time until privilege of some kind arose again, whether under Napoleon or under Stalin.

A division of labour?

In any effective organisation, there will be a division of labour. If one is expected to manage, one cannot also be accountable to every little chimney sweep being managed. One is playing a very big game in which people are mere pawns, cogs in the machine. As grotesque as it might seem to those of us who are reduced to cogs, it might be necessary for the ruler to do their job, that their errors are treated as a lighter affair than ours, even if they hurt us.

There must be people with privilege, to whom the bungling of countless people's lives and the insults towards many more must be a forgivable sin. If such privilege were to be abolished, the remaining people tasked with administration could be paralysed by indecision or transfer blame to others rather than admitting it and asking forgiveness.

The rarity of leaders?

Another reason may be that people with leadership qualities are simply rare and, therefore, forgiving them has to be more common than forgiving someone who is more easily replaced.

People with leadership qualities are rare enough, without being discouraged and suppressed, so letting them be privileged and make mistakes is a sort of sacrifice made so that we can have these leaders. A class that is allowed to make mistakes, and has protection from the consequences, can learn and grow to be more experienced and effective in an art that, we must admit, most people just aren't cut out for.

In the grand scheme of things, neither Boris Johnson's alleged peripheral involvement in lockdown parties, nor Rishi Sunak's wife's actions, seem like sufficient reasons for either of them to leave their posts. However annoying to you, their personal conduct did not result in them mismanaging the nation in any way, and should therefore be forgiven. If we have people in charge who can manage the country well enough that these were the only big complaints against them, we should complain less.

It should be added, however, that, even despite still having aristocrats, in Britain we do seem to hold leaders to a higher standard of behaviour than the Americans do. Our leaders at least have to humble themselves and apologise, and can't handwave things away or sit smugly.

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In Budapest or Islamabad, let democracy be

The behaviour of those who propose undemocratic measures against elected leaders, while portraying them as somehow undermining democracy, is remarkable.

When the EU and Europhile journalists speak of democracy, they seem to really only be talking of the dictatorship of their important selves and their opinions as they interfere around the world. They hate the rule of the people's will, which is meant to be the meaning of democracy. The same bewildering lack of appreciation for popular rule exists among Americans who continue to chant the word "democracy" as the alleged basis of their foreign policy.

Love of fake democracy

From the point of view of democratically dubious or outright unelected elites the world over, "democracy" seems to be the favoured word when engaging in empty rhetoric. They insinuate that this word refers to their esoteric authority or superiority, rather than submission to the wisdom of the people.

The rule of the people, in fact, is equated by these corrupt beings with demagoguery and described by them as "populism". That is a favoured word among the narrow few who are frustrated when they find, to their dismay, that the people have resisted them and attempted to survive.

Hatred of "populists"

Establishment scribblers, unthink tanks and other self-appointed guardians of democratic civilisation command the international news media, as well as the constructed currents of social media. They are infuriated by the popularity of Vucic, Orban and Le Pen, although in each case the candidates are popular because they genuinely represent the views of the people. The European Parliament could not even refrain from punishing Poland, despite the adjacent Ukraine war.

The same people were also distressed at Pakistan's (now ex-) Prime Minister Imran Khan's independent foreign policy, encouraging every measure except an election to safeguard "democracy". There, we find that "democracy" used as the secret word for the deeds of unelected, bought people and schemers, rather than a genuine demonstration of popularity such as an election.

Without Mr Khan, the leadership of Pakistan is expected to be handed over to a man who said "beggars can't be choosers", in English, in response to a question about his country's foreign policy. Military chiefs in the country also broke with the elected government to say they were believers in strong ties to the United States. In contrast to that beggar, Mr Khan apparently earned hatred from the US and its allies for saying his country will not be slaves.

Undemocratic worms sighted

Skyrocketing prices and what might be approaching food shortages on the European continent are tolerated by those who are evidently motivated by something other than the wellbeing of their constituents. They believe that their challenge is not to derive their legitimacy from the population, but to chastise the population and tell them to bear the costs of their policies.

If democracy is real, the right of the people to throw out worms from society and the political system is paramount. It is essential that when undemocratic worms utter the word "democracy", it is considered a blasphemy against the people and their interests.

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When is it okay to back "rebels" in another country?

Keeping in mind the events in Libya and Syria, is there ever a time when it is okay to back an uprising by armed rebels, including by giving them weapons?

The best answer is simply, no. If one were to disagree and take the view that, as a matter of principle, rebels should be supported against repressive regimes, it will require untenable and foolish strategies all over the world. Moreover, it will often fail, like it did in Syria even after so many years.


Where it may be wise to support non-government armed groups is where the case can be sufficiently made that they are the legitimate authority, as in, the state or some other legal authority, and where some formal ties can be established. In such a case, one is not really supporting rebels at all but supporting governments, and simply disagreeing about those governments. The international community and the UN are often obstinately wrong in this respect, often continuing to recognise dead regimes just because they did not like how it happened.

A decent principle to follow is that of popular sovereignty, whereby the will of the people decides whether there stands one state or another state. Referendums are excellent means to establish the validity of such sovereignty.

Different regions of the world have somewhat differing models of authority and, as such, the groups one supports in the course of supporting legitimate authorities may look "rebel"-like to outside observers. However, a group that advertises itself as a rebellion but has no clear idea about governing and can give no guarantees is usually not worth establishing relations with.

Honourable rebellion

The best rule would be that one's country may support non-state elements in a country where these elements conduct themselves in an honourable and state-like way, and where a referendum or other democratic exercise has actually established popular sovereignty. This is in stark contrast to simply producing "error"-ridden media reports asserting that the people want some kind of uprising, as is so typical of the Western press when reporting on countries like Cuba, Venezuela and Syria, only to later be corrected or redacted after the damage is done.

Another good rule is to be a sincere contributor to local and regional security in a conflict zone based on clear treaties from day one, rather than suddenly barging in on moral pretexts, as was the case with many interventions. It should always be a local power that takes the lead on how to intervene in a conflict, not a foreign superpower. Any foreign power that interferes against the wishes of the region is insincere, and little better than an invader.

Although intervention and support of rebels has often been done in a reckless and self-serving way, the practice should not be ruled out in its entirety. Where it is aligned with popular sovereignty and the will of nations to independence, it is justifiable. Support for the changing of national borders should not be ruled out, either, but only at the initiative of the local people and as a means of remedying past colonial errors.

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Is the word "globalism" useful?

In a past article, it seems I violated one of my own rules by referring to what I called globalists. Why use a term that is seen as a dog whistle to the far right, or to the followers of fringe conservative radio shows (probably in America)?

Well, that's not what it is, really. Words come into use, and we may use them somewhat differently. But, if we should succeed in explaining ourselves properly and eloquently when making our case, it matters not.


The answer is that there are many terms referring to them same thing, and this one seems to be in increasing use, which makes it likely that someone will search for it online. One can speak of elites, or of internationalists, or of international capitalists, or of corporate interests. Such terms, when used in an accusatory way, are really referring to a class of people, an economic or social core, similar to but not the same as the beneficiaries in a global core-periphery relationship.

The "global" people are a core, the beneficiaries of global relationships in a global social network, whereas the "local" are the periphery in some way, the ones whom the perceived transnational elite are concerned with managing or benefiting from. All talk of whether you are good enough, or useful enough, or ought to behave in this or that way, is typical of a certain class of people to whom we are here referring. They assume that the world's population is somehow theirs to manage, and that this should be done according to their values, which is in stark contrast to those who believe their local cultures or national interests come first.

If you have a leader who, in trying to convince the people of their vision, becomes condescending about the attitudes and sensibilities of their people, and appeals to some sort of global reality or global change rather than the national or local realities, they may be a globalist. As such, it makes sense to speak of globalism and localism as the counterparts to core and periphery or to the bourgeoisie and proletariat, and this binary may be more helpful to any discussion of politics than the old binary of "left" and "right". Such a new distinction helps to explain the diversity of conflict and protest worldwide in a way that left and right do not.

Beyond left and right

Left and right have ceased to be very useful things that one can actually use in an analysis of a political conflict. Left simply refers to the publications, organisations and celebrities that label themselves as the left, and it is otherwise unidentifiable. Whatever they say is left-wing. In practice, the professed left may be aligned with corporate interests or capitalism, or it may be against them, as there is no real clear commitment to anything by those who use this label. The same applies to the right.

A 2020 study showed that political partisanship causes "cognitive inflexibility". I am sure it was found that when people are not allowed to see labels, names, logos, and faces, or to know who is talking (is it Biden or Trump?), they accidentally place their political allegiances all over the place and keep changing sides. In contrast, one can actually sort statements and rhetoric (not necessarily individuals or organisations) into the globalist and localist categories quite effortlessly, which makes these terms more meaningful when it comes to actually thinking about ideas and policies. Simply, is the candidate defending the people as they are and the idea that we should let them be, or is the candidate demanding they conform to some global, universal ideology or agenda?

On globalist conspiracies

A term is as useful as people can make it. This one, "globalism", is often applied in an annoying way. It tends to just be used by conspiracy theorists without any accompanying explanation ever being given, other than yet more conspiracy theories usually particular to whoever is rambling and not even common to the next user of the word.

The downside to using the term is simply the sheer volume of nonsensical or conspiracist discourse on the internet using the term "globalist", which could be an argument against using the term. Is it wise to get people into using a word that, when searched online, sends people into a pit of dissonance and gibberish and makes them less likely to understand reality? Perhaps not, but one can write in a clear way that continuously injects real meaning into the terms we use, which helps break the monopoly of those who want to talk rubbish.

When used as I have presented it here, "globalism" has a very simple, distilled meaning. It refers to no conspiracy, and yet it does not necessarily contradict those who have the conspiracy theorist mindset either.

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Passivity, manipulated outrage, and the solution

The Ukraine war perfectly illustrates how outrage regarding foreign conflict zones is generated selectively and handed to passive consumers, who drink stories like cans of Coke. Countless conflicts and even the names of countries are unheard of until someone decides to sell them.

With Ukraine, we are presented (through the international media and through social media) with a supposed reality in which a country (Russia) launched an unprovoked attack on its neighbour. This caused citizens all across the world to spontaneously denounce this apparent act of evil.

Ukraine seemed to come into existence in February 2022. People were given primers explaining what Ukraine is and where it is, so they can know better than everybody in Russia and in Ukraine itself.

Likewise, many conflicts and supposedly valiant struggles, such as in Syria, ceased to exist when the stories stopped, because the enemy (in that case the "Assad regime") was not being defeated as planned. As the manipulators lost interest, so too did the manipulated.

Bought outrage

Ukraine came to nobody's attention by their own will.

In reality, no citizen of any country denounced anything or rose up against anything that happened in Ukraine. The government and the international media simply decided to coax and convince the population of countries like Great Britain into thinking it was "the done thing" to condemn Russia. We used just the same approaches we use when marketing soft drinks to people, to get them to buy a ticket on the outrage bandwagon that the government thinks they should buy.

Setting aside the question of whether or not it is morally righteous for us all to fly Ukrainian flags from our windows, we should also be interested in knowing if we have strings, and if somebody is pulling them.

Consider whether the decision to care so much about Ukraine, as opposed to conflict-ridden Yemen or Ethiopia, was really your idea. Was it not in fact caused by your awareness of Ukraine, and complete unawareness of Yemen and Ethiopia? If so, is the one pulling the strings of your outrage in fact the one responsible for providing your daily news digest or delivering your evening news broadcast?

Where are all your other flags?

Which side are you on, between Morocco and the Sahrawis in Western Sahara, or between rebel Tigray and the forces of Addis Ababa? Between the Ansar Allah-led administration in Sanaa and the exiled government of Abdrabbuh Mansur Hadi? Between Kashmir and the Indian occupation? Oh, of course, these places and combatants don't exist, because the media has not given you a primer on them and told you who the bad guy is.

Whose side were you on between Kiev and Donbass, during the eight-year-long phase of the Ukraine conflict before the Russian invasion? But of course, that never happened, because the media ignored that.

One could argue that some of those conflicts aren't worth choosing a side in, because they aren't severe enough and the casualties are too low, but why should that influence anything? Is the "bad" side really just the side that was reported to have caused casualties or escalated the situation at a particular moment of news coverage, and no history or context is needed? What kind of moral system would that be?

For many, only the things appearing on television screens or socially encouraged social media feeds exist or deserve any comment. Occasionally, someone might make a social media post trying to showcase horrors in their country, but if it wasn't on the news, most of us will just ignore it and move on, dismissing the poster as some liar or lunatic. The news media may later assert something with no evidence at all, and people will accept it.

Build your own news service

People have committed themselves to the silliest causes due to some minute of tear-jerking manipulation, while being blissfully unaware of other causes in the world, because someone else they can't even name is manipulating their news feed. People even ultimately end up giving their lives for that reason, too, misled like cattle by personages they know nothing of.

It is also really easy to break someone's control of your information. You can simply build your own news digest, using tools like paper.li or any number of news aggregator services, according to which you can select the sources you feel provide balanced coverage of world events. There is no reason to only be aware of a conflict or controversy that some talking heads think it is important to talk about, for their own reasons.

The person deciding if a country needs your support can easily be you, rather than someone else. It is in fact possible to know about every country in our world, to be aware of the strife or injustice taking place in all of them at all times. Is this not better than receiving the painfully abridged account that someone else wants to give you, covering a particular locale and a particular time favourable to them?

People have many buttons that can be pressed by others, wanting to control them like robots. It makes sense to at least try to guard some of them, especially the button of emotional appeal, so you are more independent of manipulation and able to come to independent opinions.

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