Wagging the Dog

I actually do recollect seeing the movie of that name – and a mildly amusing venture it was, into speculative political fiction; a whole war generated out of thin air by an unholy cabal of scheming bureaucrats, a conniving segment of the entertainment industry and a tame media, eager to be spoon-fed an appealing story if it would goose ratings by a point or so … and all in the cause of burying a political scandal involving a US president by setting up a war, with a hero and a theme song and cheering crowds and all. The movie was based on a book by Larry Beinart – weirdly enough, I also have a copy of it on my shelves. The book is much, much darker than the movie, but the premise is just as improbable; the national news media and the Industrial Entertainment complex going all in to generate and publicize a war with the aim of re-electing a Republican president at the bidding of and through dark money provided by a Republican eminence grise? Talk about the suspension of belief necessary to find that concept credible; not even with a bucket truck and one of those enormous construction cranes used for high-rise projects …

I thought at the time that both novel and movie were a diverting trifle, but really – was the national news media really that transparently credulous? I was an innocent in those days. Not so much the innocent after seeing the Tea Party protests and rallies being viciously calumniated solo and chorus by the entertainment and mainstream media. My cynicism dial was turned up to eleven, following that experience. Yes, they are that transparently credulous and incurious regarding any apparent contradictions between what they are spoon-feed and what is going on before the lying eyes of the rest of us. Now they are doing the same kind of group character assassination on those who refused to get a vaccination or a booster vaccination for the Chinese Commie Crud, or who object to anti-white racism taught to our children in the public schools, or who do rather like earning a living at a small business without being looted and burned into bankruptcy.

Now in this lamentable century, where anything goes in the established media, even if it seems ludicrous at first or second glance in comparison to reality. We are seeing a concerted effort on the part of our national establishment media to vanish the rising cost of practically everything at the grocery store; who are we supposed to believe, the establishment news media and the Brandon administration or the evidence of our lying eyes? We’ve had two years of the Chinese Commie Crud, with masks, lockdowns, mandatory vaccinations, and requirements for vaxx passports – so what if the dreaded Covid plague didn’t quite become the 1918 Influenza epidemic, or the medieval Black Death, either. It still provided an opportunity for bureaucrats and elected officials of an authoritarian bent to let their inner dictator out for a romp, and for the establishment media to do their best to scare the snot out of everyone. It’s becoming plain that the Commie Crud wasn’t a tenth as deadly as it was all made out to be, early on. A lot of us besides Canadian long-haul truck drivers are as tired of it as we can be, and likewise tired of being called racists and fascists for saying so. Can the news media go on wagging the Commie Crud or the inflationary dog for much longer? What other media tails are trying to wag the reality dog? Discuss as you wish.

81 thoughts on “Wagging the Dog”

  1. I’m still reading the RFK Jr book and sent a copy to my sister after she promised to take her blood pressure medicine first. Now Melinda Gates just announced she is not going to turn over her promised $15 billion to Bill and his “Foundation.” I have always thought RFK Jr is a nut but he has hundreds of references in his book. More and more conspiracy theories are turning up true.

  2. Remember when the AIDS “epidemic” was going to spread out of intravenous drug users & homosexuals into the general population? We were going to lose an entire generation, according to the Surgeon General. And then it was gone.

    Remember when Kazakhstan was in flames? And then it too was gone.

    This is Standard Operating Procedure for our Political Class. Push a scam as far as they can, and then replace it with something else. UkraineScam is getting kind of dull. the ClimateChangeScam is less & less convincing. But our Betters are smart people. They know they can fool a lot of the people a lot of the time. They will think of something.

  3. I keep waiting for the other shoe to drop, but it never happens. I mean, these people lost me some thirty-odd years ago, once all the inherent contradictions in what they were telling me really became utterly undeniable… But, you talk to the average person, and they’re unable to bring themselves to admit that there’s something going on. I mean, I talk to family members about the media being untrustworthy, and they keep right on parroting the latest talking points from CNN, even after it becomes readily apparent that they’ve been lied to by a bunch of pedophiliac perverts. Seriously–They still believe the Russian Collusion line of BS, and that CNN/MSNBC/Fox are trustworthy, even as Cuomo is getting fired and Zucker is joining him on the unemployment line. None of that even begins to dent their faith in the whole “OMG, Trump is corrupt…” story line, right along with the whole Hunter Biden laptop deal.

    Average person in this country is an ‘effing idiot, and I have to include a lot of my relatives in that, as painful as it is. They’ve been oblivious my entire life, and show no sign of changing. They believe the lies of whatever person got to them first, and cannot take in any ideas that aren’t in alignment with that “first past the post” reality-creation. It’s painful to observe, because these aren’t necessarily stupid people–It’s just that they can’t process the idea that the media has been lying to them all their lives and is lying to them even as we speak.

  4. Yeah, I’ve been seeing the meme a number of different sites: What’s the difference between a conspiracy theory and the facts? About two weeks…

  5. The establishment got lazy in 2016, and got shocked when Trump won. They basically openly vowed starting the next day that the same thing would never happen again. Their power isn’t total, but it’s pretty darn strong. This Ukraine nonsense is hard to figure out, I still have no idea what their play is. They can’t be stupid enough to think anyone believes them. My guess is it’s their way of counter-bluffing whatever Putin’s bluff is…the alternatives are too awful to consider.

  6. As to bogus causes for war…
    My problem with Wag The Dog was only that it was another case of projection by Progressives. Because Bosnia had already occurred and Kosovo was just around the corner.

    Both of those wars were predicated on 1) lies and 2) irrational European fear of starting another WW1.

    The irrational fear was obvious to one who studied hiostory, since no other sort of ethnic skirmishes in the world motivated them to mangle NATO’s charter to involve the US (and making the US do almost all of the work). It was all, “Oh no! WW1 started in the Balkans, and it could happen all over again!” Of course, none of them made the connection that my high school history books did, that the war was ignited because of a web of alliances that all had their fingers on a hair trigger. Also that maybe empires are not stable things. But both of those conflicts were bizarre monster-in-my-closet scenarios that we enabled because there was a Democrat in office who… had a sex scandal plaguing him.

    The lying was not as obvious. Mainly because it was so pervasive from the beginning that getting the truth out was horrendously difficult. Did you know that the picture on the cover of Time of the poor Bosnian muslim behind razor wire and looking like a victim of a concentration camp was actually a different ethnicity altogether, in a different country (of the former Yugoslavia), and he had tuberculosis (iirc) that made him look permanently starved? Yeah, neither did most of the country. There were lots of lies like that about Bosnia. A lot of the acclaimed atrocities were reprisals for even worse atrocities committed by the other side. And, let’s face it, there was a side that was encouraging the war and it wasn’t the one you probably think.
    Kosovo was just blatant lying by the media and our politicians to drive the war. Our politicians and media still had a burning hatred against Milosevic (which isn’t hard to justify – if only they had felt that way about both sides) and they wanted him destroyed, and anyone who got in their way. So, they lied about the reprisals (again!) against muslim terrorists who had invaded their country from Albania, and claimed it was all just… wait for it! … RACISM! It was all just islamophobia on the part of those nasty Serbians who were a minority in Kosovo anyway. (Primarily because the muslims were invading – shades of our southern border – from Albania.)

    So, yeah, when Wag The Dog came out, and I had already done a tour in Bosnia (and it was still ongoing) and Kosovo was already being spun up, I saw it as an incredibly prescient bit of projection.

  7. You have to remember that leftists generally believe that the rich and powerful are pretty much all Republicans, and thus the narrative is heavily spun to the right. They are probably aware that academics are nearly all Democrats or further left, bureaucrats also, reporters also. But none of that matters because the super-rich control the narrative.
    They are genuinely unaware that most of the super-rich aren’t really all that conservative either.

  8. The whole “Wag the Dog” thing was purest projection; the Clinton administration was the number-one offender when it came to creating theater to distract internal political problems. Line up what was going on during all those “crises”, and then look at how the media hyped up and helped distract everyone from the internal issues like Monica Lewinsky. Hell, it was blatantly obvious at the time it was going on.

    The other thing about all that crap that made it what it was came down to the really blatant ignorance of facts they put on display. Nobody ever discussed the realities of what was going on in Bosnia or Kosovo; it was party-line “Serbs bad”, and despite the fact that there was no real understanding of the background facts on the ground, everyone nodded their heads and went along with the whole thing in lockstep. Marching morons, the lot of them.

    I really started to lose my faith in the system about the time I was exposed to the folks the administration sent out to “help” with the planning and wargaming process we were working on. I’m not going to say they were stupid, but… Dear God, the sheer hubris and prideful ignorance they put on display, as well as the utter disinterest in trying to understand foreign cultures. You’d sit there and listen to these people try to template what was going on, and they’d be discussing Balkan ethnic politics like they were talking about the pot-luck rivalries between Minnesota Lutherans and Methodists, or something. Complete and utter naivete and ignorance, total inability to grasp the vicious brutality of Balkan life going back centuries, if not millennia.

    Worst part was realizing that those people were not only the ones who had the ears of the decision-makers, but that some of them were actually the decision-makers themselves.

  9. Kirk
    February 4, 2022 at 1:38 pm

    the sheer hubris and prideful ignorance they put on display, as well as the utter disinterest in trying to understand foreign cultures.
    Yep. Totally ignoring the long memories related to Turkish/Ottoman invasions and such.

  10. kosovo was one of those incidents, that make you go hmm, in retrospect, a brushfire that began in response to a crackdown by Serbian Orthodox soldiers against Moslem fighters who were largely based in Albania, now we’ve discovered this band, called the Kosovo Liberation front had strong islamist ties, stretching all the way to South Asia, some of the key players in Al Queda, were active in that theatre of operations, now consider the timeline, right after the embassy bombings, there was a pdb that indicated ubl’s intentions, largely based on the interrogation of Ali Mohammed, the double triple agent inside our information loop, so what was the next step to engage in a campaign that benefited AQ, that brought us in proximity with then quiescent but restless Russian forces,

  11. @GWB,

    It was really worse than that. I encountered actual State Department personnel who were entitled “area experts” who were completely ignorant of Ottoman involvement in the region, and who thought that the Bosnian Muslims were just people who happened to be Muslim and living there–Zero comprehension that they were descendants of opportunistic turncoats that’d been heavily engaged in running the organs of Ottoman repression, or that when you tell a Serb that Islam is coming back, that’s code for “They’re gonna be selling our kids in Istanbul, again…”.

    I had to walk one of them through the whole thing, and they were incredulous that such things had actually happened. I’m not entirely certain that they really fully understood, in an organic way, what that sort of thing had induced in the Serbs with regards to Islam in the region. You could really tell who’d been captured by the Orientalists in college, because they had zero empathy or understanding for the “primitive” Serb understanding of Islam, which was pretty spot-on for what had happened.

    Most of the problems in the Balkans stem from one thing, and one thing only: Outsiders of various flavors, from Saudi money men building Islam to German bankers wanting to get better returns on their investments. Idiot US State Department types getting involved didn’t exactly help, either.

    My own read on things is that had outsiders stayed the hell out of things, Yugoslavia might still be a thing, but unfortunately… That didn’t happen. It was a delicately balanced thing, and once it tipped over a bit, the whole situation spun out of control.

  12. “I encountered actual State Department personnel who were entitled “area experts” who were completely ignorant of Ottoman involvement in the region…”
    O.M. G.
    Consider my mind blown … I had no earthly idea that blissful ignorance on the part of minions of the State Department was that … unscathed by historical knowledge. That kind of stainless-steel ignorance is rather horrifying.
    And I thought that the people at the American Embassy in Athens were clueless; getting miffed because the Greek unionists were blockading the base, and they couldn’t get to the BX…

  13. @Kirk
    I believe you. The Foggy Bottom (and thereby, the entire educational apparatus that supports them) boys and girls were marinated in the post-WW2 globalist worldview and it (being Progressive) thoroughly ignores human nature and history.

    Long before SCIENCE! became a thing, I had identified technocracy as one of the worst forms of gov’t. For reasons like this.

  14. I really wish I could point to a “why” of it, but all I can report is what I observed. It was like they had some sort of bizarre blind spot that stopped their historical understanding and froze it at about 1950, or something…

    The weird thing was that there were people who knew better that were around, but they weren’t ever the people running things. There were a couple of really brilliant guys who knew the ins and outs of Balkan ethnic BS better than I did, but the thing was, they weren’t doing much more than doing what I was, which was serving the coffee and running the support network for the exercises. If you’ve ever read the Dominic Flandry books, you’d recognize the syndrome. Right up until I realized I was living one of those out, I had always thought that those were exaggerated for effect, like P.G. Wodehouse writing Bertie Wooster.

    What still stuns me is how the “system” selected those people to be the ones making the decisions, and sidelined the guys who knew better. We do that everywhere in our society, and I’d love to know just how the hell we’ve managed to institutionalize failure and stupidity so thoroughly. It’s not like we don’t have people who know what to do, or what is really going on, it’s that we never put those people in charge of things. I guarantee you that you could have probably grabbed some random selection of field-grade officers and a couple of good staff NCOs, put them in charge of the withdrawal from Afghanistan, and we’d have done a thousand times better than we actually did. Only thing is, we didn’t put those people in charge: We put the cretins into authority, and then wondered why it all crashed and burned…

  15. I’m old enough to hazily remember the wag-the-dog scenario- I say hazily because I neither read the book nor watched the movie- but I also recall that the gop senate leader of the day accused Clinton of using the tactic in real life, with one of the Balkan adventures.

    The gope Senator was quickly barraged with outrage and of course immediately groveled an obsequious apology to Clinton.

    The government would not lie to us! Just ask the government and its chosen spokesperson!!

    Thus I find it amusing today to see the shameless liar Jen Psaki get asked to justify her shameless lies about Ukraine, etc.

    I also recall being assured that the US attack on Bosnia had not resulted in a single American casualty, not a single one. Then later by chance I happened to meet an ex-soldier who was involved, and who told me of a helicopter crash that had killed several American troops.

    Lesson- don’t believe a single thing these people say, on any topic, ever.

  16. Oh, there were all sorts of casualties–The thing is, they defined them out of existence. If I remember right, that helicopter crash was considered a maintenance issue, and thus classified as “accidental”.

    There were rumors that the maintenance issues involved were 23mm in diameter, and fired from ZSU-23 quad-barrels, but I never got much more than rumor on that one.

    You would probably have a lot of grounds for cynicism, were you able to go back and examine the realities of how and precisely where a bunch of guys have been killed, over the years. The glib manner in which they lied about Pat Tillman’s death ought to offer some hints, as well as that whole fiasco in Niger with the SF team that got whacked. The egregious lies told by the chain of command, as well as the self-serving blamecasting performed by the actual parties responsible for the entire cock-up would be what I’d term “educational” for anyone in uniform, or who has family members in uniform. Your kid gets killed overseas, you might get the truth if it isn’t particularly controversial, but if its something like what happened in Niger? Don’t count on getting the truth. Ever.

    Hell, there are friends of mine that died under suspicious circumstances in Germany back during the 1980s that I still have lingering doubts about, mostly because the “official story” doesn’t add up, and that the people I know who were there were told not to discuss any of it with anyone, ever. There were “training accidents” that happened at times and places where there wasn’t any “training” going on, and which involved things that wouldn’t be used in training. I still have my suspicions about at least one of the cases, and those involve cover-up of what should have been a fairly serious casus belli, but they wrote it off as our own guys having been screwing around with live ammo. Which, oddly enough, was never prosecuted. And, you’d think it would be, when a couple of GIs were killed by it.

    Don’t even get me started on Korea.

  17. houska
    February 4, 2022 at 7:54 pm
    How is this legal?

    This is power politics. Legality and/or constitutionality have no bearing. Right now, GoFundMe is helping their political allies the Canadian government by defunding [and robbing] the Truckers and those who have contributed to them. To be honest I was expecting something different to happen soon, involving a violation of the War Measures Act [the law that governs the Canadian military] as amended after 1970. The changes absolutely banned using the Canadian military from being used against Canadian civilians. The Trudeau regime has been openly threatening the use of the army. Hell, they still may.

    I am accused, rightly, of not being a “nice person”. With that in mind:

    First, this is theft of millions of dollars done by GoFundMe at the behest of the Canadian government. Being that it is government involved, there is no hope of legal process recovering the money. And the truckers are now unfunded. Which means that they will have to go home, relieving the pressure on the totalitarian Canadian government for now.

    Second, anyone who makes a contribution to a charity or anything/anyone via GoFundMe is an idiot and is throwing the money away as if they can steal this, they can steal anything.

    Third, there is no political or electoral means of influencing the Canadian government, other than I suppose bribes. The legitimacy of their authority should be questioned both by Canadians and interested foreigners. I suspect that it is being done by some now.

    Fourth, given 3, it is up to Canadians to decide what they will do with an illegitimate government, and by what means. It is up to foreigners, including Americans, to decide if they want to trade with companies in a country whose government has shown that it will aid and abet theft for its political benefit.

    Fifth, I suspect that Canadian truckers, knowing that there is no political or electoral means to affect policy or avenge the theft, will be less than enthusiastic about delivering to those areas controlled by the Liberal Party or their de facto allies.

    Sixth, Americans should watch what is happening, and know that the current American government would love to do the same to us. The time is ten times overpast for those who are not Leftists to develop parallel but separate institutions; financial and political, to protect ourselves.

    Subotai Bahadur

  18. }} I have always thought RFK Jr is a nut but he has hundreds of references in his book. More and more conspiracy theories are turning up true.

    This clearly has been going on for far longer than anyone acks — starting at the least with the merdia support for both Stalin and Hitler — both were Time’s “Man of the Year”, with one of them MotY **twice**, even as they hid and denied and obfuscated any references to Stalin’s purges, which were at least as bad, bodycount-wise, as Hitler’s Holocaust.

    And as Ann Coulter showed, we have McCarthy himself — What it’s been claimed he said/did — he was true and accurate within most reason — and what he actually said/did vs. what has been conflated to include him (The abominable acts of HUAC, which, being a House of Reps body, had little to nothing to do with Senator McCarthy.)… I now distrust anything by the vaunted Edward R. Murrow.

    Then learning in the last decade or that the Tet Offensive was a total disaster for the NV, and that at least some of the higher ups were discussing amongst themselves how to go about surrendering and getting the best concessions they could get… only to see how the US Merdia, including the illustrious Walter Cronkite, were selling it to the US people, leading them to realize all that they had to do was keep holding on and the US Merdia would make the USA surrender their victory. With the resultant disaster for millions of people in Vietnam and neighboring countries.

    Then finding out that the merdia lied about Bush I and his “shopping market experience” (nontrivial, though a small incident: it very very much made him look completely out of touch)

    The merdia and Clinton, with their attempt to reduce the whole Monica thing to a minor personal incident, rather than both sexual predation (not against Monica — she knew what she was doing — against anyone ELSE who didn’t want a set of Presidential Knee-Pads in return for a lot of money, a cushy job, and minor infamy) AND lying under oath. Also Hillary’s attempt to subvert the FBI back before Obama did it surreptitiously, to get at their enemies… Merdia: *crickets*

    And step forward to Rather’s reputation-destroying attempt to provide false (and largely irrelevant) evidence to damn Bush II…

    And the merdia repeatedly harping on what was (un-noted as) the lowest “death toll” for any significant war in US history, as though it was an endless horror story of death and destruction…. Then going utterly silent on the same after Teh One brought peace to all humanity and reversed Global Warming singlehandedly.

    Then the various and repeated “Pay no attention to what is behind that curtain!!” bovine excreta under Teh One and his corrupt and incompetent 8 years…

    And the rabid insanity of Trump’s years, and the even more rabid insanity with regards to Covid….

    This shit has been going on for not less than 90 years… The only question is, how freaking long it took you (and me, yes) to catch on…

  19. “The abominable acts of HUAC”
    Communism is bad and Communists should be hunted down and eliminated. Commies in the 50s were treated far more leniently than conservatives are today, because squishes back then were offended by Nixon, McCarthy, et al.

  20. }}} who were completely ignorant of Ottoman

    Possible Excerpt:

    Ottomans? What the fuck does this have to do with furniture?


  21. }}} What still stuns me is how the “system” selected those people to be the ones making the decisions, and sidelined the guys who knew better. We do that everywhere in our society, and I’d love to know just how the hell we’ve managed to institutionalize failure and stupidity so thoroughly.

    This appears to often be the norm and the standard ever since we stopped having The Biggest Badass as the leaders.

    TBH, one actually wonders how the eph we got the Founding Fathers in charge. Every other revolution in history has generally be run by the worst quacks, scoundrels, and charlatans available at the time. Instead we got a bunch of near-geniuses who only quacked up one major point, offhand: the slavery issue — they should have just banned it outright from 1808, rather than just “banning importation”, as they did. Even with a “grandfather clause”, that alone probably would have led to a massive improvement in our current social situation, and put us ahead of anyone else in “slave owning” history, rather than behind so many.

  22. }}} If you’ve ever read the Dominic Flandry books, you’d recognize the syndrome.

    And Retief, as well. Laumer took an even more comic take on it than Anderson did.

    }}} Shouldn’t the money raised be returned to the donors?

    Houska, FWIW, they’ve recanted, esp. after Musk made fun of them, and will now be returning the funds unbidden to the donors, minus the 1m they had already paid out (theoretically, you could have, even before this, demanded a return of the funds by deliberate action. Now that deliberate action is no longer required).

    Musk also called attention to the fact that GFM had no issues with a fund-me for Seatle’s CHOP supporters, even AFTER there had been a couple deaths in the “mostly peaceful” occupation… Meanwhile, nothing violent has ACTUALLY happened with regards to the Convoy other than in the minds of the same sort of blithering Nellies who were so terrified by Americans actually applying their Constitutional Right to Petition the Government for a Redress of their Grievances on 1/6/21.

    There is going to be a serious change at some point, and I do not believe it will be as pretty as it could and should be, not the least because the merdia is doing its best to lie and hide the misbehavior of government officials in both nations.. The notion of extensive government overreach is being openly shown for posterity right now.

  23. The weirdest thing about the whole deal is the fact that I’m unable to really identify a nexus about which it all revolves.

    We had a bunch of media embeds with us during the initial push into Iraq. Observing them, you’d be hard-pressed to have been able to identify “members of a conspiracy”, but they were entirely of a piece with it all, and churned out voluminous copy along “party lines”, all the while denying that they were doing any such thing. You could show them things, explain those things in nauseating detail, and yet they would then go away and write up stories that at best, distorted the living hell out whatever you’d told them and demonstrated. Confronted with that, and called on their bullshit, they’d just not meet your eyes, deny they’d done it, and go on to continue doing the same damn thing.

    I don’t think you can even really point at some shadowy cabal of conspiracists to blame for this crap. It’s more like some kind of group mind effect, to where they can’t think for themselves outside of the “party line”, and the hell of it is, it’s self-perpetuating at this point.

    I had an acquaintance of mine, who was a really good writer, self-taught and who went out got himself a degree in journalism. At the time, the local news around Fort Lewis was direly bad–The people writing the stories couldn’t even get basic facts right, let alone do any real analysis. He tried “breaking in” to the media, with the local paper and TV stations as a free-lancer. His work was exponentially better than the majority of the dreck they were publishing, and it was accurate.

    He could not get hired. Every time he went into the hiring process, they’d hire some maleducated dolt that couldn’t even get the basics right, and gave them a byline. That’s what the editors wanted–Not accuracy, but compliance with the views of the editors. It was kind of depressing to watch, because this guy could really write, and he had some very sharp insights into what was going on. In the end, I think he wound up selling insurance…

    It’s a lot of the same thing with regards to the similar issues in governance. The dolts run everything, and they’re threatened by competence–So, they keep selecting, hiring, and training other dolts. Then, when those dolts screw up, they close ranks and protect them with utter dedication, because they know that if the dam ever breaks and someone gets held accountable, the whole shoddy edifice will likely collapse.

    The longer I study this stuff, the more I examine what goes on, the more I’m forced to conclude that most of what we’re talking about is the effect of human nature. We simply cannot do large-scale hierarchy with any degree of competence over time. The inevitable always happens, which is that the dolts insinuate themselves into every niche in the organization, and then drive out the competent and honest, filling the structure with their own kind. Doesn’t matter where, when, or what… That’s what inevitably happens. It’s not a conspiracy, it’s just people doing what people tend to do, poorly.

  24. This phenomenon was called “The Murray Gell-Mann Amnesia effect.”

    “Briefly stated, the Gell-Mann Amnesia effect is as follows. You open the newspaper to an article on some subject you know well. In Murray’s case, physics. In mine, show business. You read the article and see the journalist has absolutely no understanding of either the facts or the issues. Often, the article is so wrong it actually presents the story backward—reversing cause and effect. I call these the “wet streets cause rain” stories. Paper’s full of them.
    In any case, you read with exasperation or amusement the multiple errors in a story, and then turn the page to national or international affairs, and read as if the rest of the newspaper was somehow more accurate about Palestine than the baloney you just read. You turn the page, and forget what you know.”

    We lost a lot when he died.

  25. that was a great mary harf impression,

    now the story of tet is a little more complicated then cronkite’s category error, according to sam adams, he was the intel officer who mapped the vietcong’s advance, but westmoreland’s G2 then colonel Graham, dismissed it, this came out in the libel suit, so not unlike MacArthur’s intel officer, dismissing the Chinese onslaught with greater impact,

  26. @Mike K,

    Crichton recognized the effect, all right; what he didn’t get into was the deeper question of how and why that phenomenon even happens. One would think, looking at things from the viewpoint of a normal person, that the purpose and point of the media was to transmit information accurately. The demonstrated article in terms of actual produced work product, however…?

    I keep going back to that 13th Analect of Confucius, wherein he discusses the “rectification of names”:

    “A superior man, in regard to what he does not know, shows a cautious reserve. If names be not correct, language is not in accordance with the truth of things. If language be not in accordance with the truth of things, affairs cannot be carried on to success. When affairs cannot be carried on to success, proprieties and music do not flourish. When proprieties and music do not flourish, punishments will not be properly awarded. When punishments are not properly awarded, the people do not know how to move hand or foot. Therefore a superior man considers it necessary that the names he uses may be spoken appropriately, and also that what he speaks may be carried out appropriately. What the superior man requires is just that in his words there may be nothing incorrect.”

    — Confucius, Analects, Book XIII, Chapter 3, verses 4-7, translated by James Legge

    What we have going on is a society-wide plague of “incorrect names”. Ranging from journalism to the military, all across governance and civil life. Nobody calls things out for what they are; everyone buys into the lie, because they themselves are unable to recognize the realities beneath the myriad obfuscations surrounding them.

    It’s like with those two college professors that recently came out as being in favor of pedophilia; nobody is willing to recognize the reality that these two charlatans are the disgusting sub-human creatures that they are, and because of that, they’re granted high honors and respect within academia. Root cause? The inability to properly describe and discuss that which they are, because of obfuscatory language and the inability to properly name them for what they are.

    Were you to present someone with the reality of what these two deviants are proposing as “moral”, the act of sexual congress between an adult and a toddler, you’d know damn well what to do about it and them. However, because they’re able to misuse and abuse the language, abstracting the reality, they can get away with advocating for what any normal person would instantly identify as inherently immoral and wrong.

    Names need rectification. Badly. And, it’s coming–I think there’s going to be a tipping point, about like the one where Ceaucescu was standing out in front of that crowd, haranguing them, and then the crowd looked around and realized that it was just Ceaucescu up there on the reviewing stand, and not even his secret police believed in the bullshit any more…

    At the point where it all tips over, there are going to be a lot of shocked faces, likely struggling to believe that this is really happening, as the nooses go over their heads.

  27. there are fundamental truths, like stated in romans 1, as well as the consequences, as we recede into a pagan world, of celebrating of lusts, violent inpulses, sacrifices to the elder gods (that’s fauci’s gig), et al, this is where we find ourselves,

  28. just another detail, they are thinking of shipping the 20th hijacker, mohammed qahtani, back to the kingdom, he would have been the fourth man on the plane that crashed in shanksville, his tribe was notorious even to the likes of charles doughty, which he noted in arabia desertica, so gitmo serves like an executive training program for terrorists, one figure ibrahim quosi rose to no 3 in the arabian branch, of course we know the top ranks of the taliban,

  29. Anyone with any clarity of vision would have put all of the captured terrorists on trial under the Laws of Land Warfare as unlawful combatants, and then summarily executed them.

    We, however, lack such men. So, we treated them as though they were merely juvenile offenders, granting mercy and quarter where they themselves offered none.

    End result? We’ll get what we deserve.

  30. lawfare has contaminated the legal system, the levick group working with white shoe firms did much the same effect as ‘defund the police’ stateside, inside the kingdom (ghost written in large measure by khashoggi,) makes it clear that figures there, didn’t understand the favor we were doing for them,

  31. }}} The inevitable always happens, which is that the dolts insinuate themselves into every niche in the organization, and then drive out the competent and honest, filling the structure with their own kind.

    Well, this is tied to the Peter Principle, and its strong corollary, the Septic Tank Rule of Management — after all, what is government but a specific form of management?

    The Peter Principle
    Employees are promoted based on their success in previous jobs until they reach a level at which they are no longer competent, as skills in one job do not necessarily translate to another

    The proper thing to do at this point is to recognize the incompetence, and then demote them back to the position of greatest merit. But we never do this.

    The Septic Tank Rule of Management
    The really really BIG chunks always float to the top.

    And this is particularly true in Government…

  32. to be fair who are the ukrainians going to buy equipment from, the french the germans, they are so far inside the Bears paw, it’s not funny,

  33. Maybe slightly tangential to this topic — but definitely worth thinking about in the context of the Biden* Administration beating the war drums.

    A state-of-the-art F-35 crashed on its first deployment on a US carrier, and fell into the South China Sea. Fortunately, the pilot survived. The press reports at the time referred to the pilot as “he”, without ever sharing a name. Now comes this English-language report from a – hmmm – Russian source:


    Some thoughts — First, nothing against (non-pregnant) women as military pilots. Reality is that very few human beings, male or female or confused, have the reflexes, spatial awareness, & temperament to fly a fighter jet. The issue is that idealogues in the US Government are abusing women by lowering the standards for females, in an effort to meet quotas. This is not good for anyone, not least the women who are forced into deadly situations.

    Second, what impact does this advancement of the under-performing have on the assessments made by our peer competitors such as Russia & China? They see women who are not up to the task of flying fighter jets, Generals who cannot organize an evacuation from Afghanistan, a Navy that keeps driving its ships into solid objects. Might they conclude they have nothing to fear from a “Woke” opponent, and thus lower the threshold at which they would be prepared to trigger a war?

    Third, what about our trust in our own government? When we cannot trust an Administration to be honest with us, should we be prepared to let them drag us into far-away wars?

  34. There’ve been two rumors swirling online at various times:
    One that the pilot was a woman.
    Two that the pilot was having health issues related to the jab.
    In neither case can the DoD be trusted to be open about it.

  35. This is all so strange.
    Russia invading Ukraine makes zero sense. They haven’t undertaken a military undertaking anywhere near that scale in 40 years, and they’re nowhere near as strong as they were then.
    So then what are they doing? Bluffing? The payoff needs to be higher than the bluff, so what would that be?
    The US rhetoric makes zero sense. Why are they acting so hysterical? Why not stay calm and quiet? Do they think Russia is bluffing and therefore if they yell and scream a lot, then when Russia doesn’t invade it will look like their resolve is what stopped them? I have no idea what other motivation there could be.
    If Russia’s not going to invade and is not bluffing, then is there another explanation besides diversion? From what? China doing something militarily makes no sense and doesn’t fit in with their history either.
    It’s all inexplicable. By far the most dangerous aspect is that absolutely no one takes the US president seriously, which hasn’t been the case in generations…All of DC and the media is made up of idiots of the caliber of Ben Rhodes, who think the world is a game, and that it’s all showbiz. Of course the likes of Putin and Xi, men who’ve actually had to face real adversity in their lives, might be inclined to do things that otherwise make zero sense…

  36. We should set aside the obvious corrupt relationship between the Biden* crime family and the Ukrainian kleptocrats — mainly because the Bidens* are not honest enough to stay bought. So why are Biden*’s handlers making such a big deal about the Ukrainian border? It is clearly intended to be a “Rally Round the Flag” distraction from Biden*’s abysmal performance as “President” and the rapidly deteriorating economic situation.

    Probably in today’s phone call from Biden* (requestor) to Putin (who agreed to make time for the call), it did not matter what Biden* mumbled and mis-spoke. The State Department translator ignored what Biden* said and instead delivered the real message in Russian:

    “Look, sorry about this, but in public we have to tar Russia as an evil empire to gin up some domestic support in case our normal Democrat vote-tampering falls short for the next elections. We will make a big fuss in the media. But behind the scenes, we will twist the puny arms of Ukranians and EuroScum to give you what you want — a neutral Ukraine.

    “Just please let Biden* claim victory when you walk off with the prize. There will be no problem at our end, since our media does what they are told. Please try to get your media not to crow about the great Russian victory. Thank you.”

  37. It’s super easy to make Tom Clancy level storylines seem all too plausible right now.
    All I’ll say is if the lights go out and the internet goes down in the next few weeks, starting in the evening on the East Coast when we know the “president” is out of commission, I’ll feel pretty apprehensive the longer it lasts…

  38. Brian: “Ukraine’s never joining NATO”

    I think you are right — but that is not what NATO or the US is saying. NATO and the US are saying the opposite, that the Ukranian kleptocrats can join NATO whenever they want.

    It seems that if the US & NATO would simply state that the Ukraine will never be allowed to join NATO, the problem would be over. So why are the US and NATO not saying that?

  39. this was the scenario in lawrences wrights attempt at michael crichton fiction, ‘the end of october’ put simply a fast replicating, highly fatal virus spreads from indonesia to the hajj
    and then across the world, ragnarok breaks loose, it triggers a hot war between the kingdom and Iran, with the US and Russia as proxies, and cyberwarfare is employed to devastating effect, in the end it turns out the Russians were not involved, but a deep ecologist fmr? member of the CDC, who wanted to teach humanity a lesson, not before we come this close to nuclear war,

  40. Gavin: Same reason why we don’t say we won’t use nukes first, even though we never would.
    Putin’s not a child, he knows all this. There’s something else going on.

  41. actually these pantomine horses have explicitly made the point they will not use first, stupid monkeys, and lets leave out the drag queen who they put as energy spokesman, in other news they are looting the 9/11 victims fund, to pay ransom to the Taliban, not content with giving the bulk of our weapons, vehicles and armor

  42. So why are the US and NATO not saying that?<

    Why does NATO still exist ? The Soviet Union is gone. It seems to be that this is a device for the EU to extract a few Billion each year from us. The Military Industrial Complex looks more real every day.

  43. “Why does NATO still exist ? “

    Because our Betters live a very comfortable life in the DC Swamp, far from anywhere that real things are happening. In a sense, they are stuck in the comfortable world of the later 20th Century, when the US had the largest manufacturing economy in the world, the strongest military, and a generally moral population which observed rules of public decorum (although that was already decaying). They don’t realize the world has changed in the last quarter century — indeed, they don’t understand that their actions have changed the world they once knew.

    They have hollowed out the US economy to the extent that we are now dependent for many essentials on the willingness of exporters to accept freshly printed Bidenbucks. They have run up a National Debt that can never be repaid, and created obligations like Social Security & Medicare that can never be honored. They have mis-used and degraded the US military that won WWII. But those self-satisfied fools don’t realize it.

    The Best & Brightest are like Trust Fund Babies who have run through their inheritance, but have been ignoring what their accountants have been trying to tell them. They won’t realize what a mess they have created until someone shows up to repossess their new Ferrari. Will the tow truck have Putin or Xi painted on the side? Time will tell.

  44. it does seem to be a solution in search of problem, if you read alex dryden another former?? british intelligence operative, who turned to labeled fiction, putin bribed most of western europe with monies he started from a laundry scheme, he started back when he was working with the stasi representative, who is the german side of the nordstream board,

  45. Ukraine is not joining NATO as long as Crimea and Donbas remain outstanding. That would be the equivalent of NATO declaring war on Russia, so just isn’t happening. Ukraine, manifestly, lacks the ability to eject Russia from either place so the initiative is all with Russia.

    Russia on the other hand, clearly lacks the ability to bring either conflict to a decisive end without a major escalation of hostilities. I’m willing to bet that at some point, a Russian withdrawal of support for the Donbas “separatists” in exchange for recognition of the Crimea annexation was on the table. Russian history and geography, I’m sure, provides a large selection of Russian language vocabulary equating to quagmire that are being circulated just under the surface of the Russian corruptocracy.

    Putin has doubled down on his losing bet by transferring the troops necessary to secure their Far East and most especially the Trans Siberian Railway west in a show of force. That railway is the only means other than air transport for them to return. Just how hard will it be to cut that line? There are already numerous Chinese involved in various enterprises throughout Siberia, how many are also PLA? Once those troops become committed to what will be a long, messy, undermanned struggle in Ukraine, they are effectively out of the picture anyway. Putin must really trust Xi.

    From various statements I’ve read, the Russian Army has adopted the Western idea of organizing by battalions rather than larger formations like divisions. This is to allow larger organizations to be built up, ad hoc, from these smaller pieces as needed, sort of like Leggos. This also makes the individual battalions dependent for support on units that they will have no experience with. In theory, as long as all units are of a high standard, this will work. That in a characteristic that has never described the Russian Army. A recurring theme is the resources Russian armies have had to devote to shooting deserters.

    I believe invading Ukraine would be a sort of regime suicide as the resulting debacle would make plain just how hollow and toothless the Russian Bear has become and could easily cost them Siberia. The real question is just how deluded Putin is.

  46. General Ivashov who goes back to the Czech intervention, made similar arguments in an open letter, but short sidedness has not been an exception in Russian military strategy, they succeeded to a degree in Chechnya, with a ruthless proxy, also they managed to send many of the militants to Syria, Georgia, they seem to have neutralized since 2008, the leader there had to flee to Ukraine if memory serves, where would Zelensky end up in Poland,

  47. So we can either think that Putin is deluded to the point of derangement, a guy who clawed his way to the top of the Russian system and has stayed there for decades now, OR something entirely different is going on. I have absolutely no idea what makes anyone believe the former instead of the latter.

  48. yes there is too much painting Putin as 10 cubits high, that silly Senate Intel report was the best publicity for the Concord CEO, Pregoshin, it’s hard to stand out in a city of 300 oligarchs,
    maybe he paid for it, seeing as the Senate acting member made his money in the Russian markets, that would be Mark Warner, that he employed cutouts to Russian foreign ministry,
    his other sideline was the Wagner Corps, that was pretty badly dinged up in Syria, and later Libya, they employ it in more permissive environments like Mali and the Sudan

  49. I don’t think anyone outside of the Kremlin has a clue what is going on inside Putin’s mind. Outside perspective? He’s possibly one of the worst Russian leaders, ever. Inside? Obviously, they think differently inside the Russian power structure.

    Final arbiter? History. Which ain’t written, just yet.

  50. It seems to be that this is a device for the EU to extract a few Billion each year from us.


    The Yurupean Yooyun is so certain they’ll always have Americans on tap to die for them that they’ve been quite happy to let their military capability slide towards zero.

    Especially Germany- and if the Germans don’t think their country is worth defending, I have no idea why they think Americans would disagree.

    I think Americans actually don’t want to defend Germany- and the rather odd lack of a political challenge to the endless wealth we expend to benefit the foreigners of NATO is yet another sign of lack of genuine opposition party in the US.

    But that era is ending.

    Hence I predict we’ll soon see a major candidate for office notice that NATO has no reason to exist and propose it should not- and it will disappear like a soap bubble.

  51. “Hence I predict we’ll soon see a major candidate for office notice that NATO has no reason to exist and propose it should not- and it will disappear like a soap bubble.”
    How can you possibly write that after seeing the way the Deep State went after Trump. There is waaaaay too much money at stake for them to let it just go away without a fight.

  52. MDS: “The real question is just how deluded Putin is.”

    If Putin believes that Biden* is weak, the US military is degraded, most of Europe does not want war, Germany is dependent on Russian gas, the population of the Ukraine is far from united, and the US population is mainly divided between those who don’t care about the Ukraine and those strongly opposed to war — then maybe there are some subjects on which Putin is NOT deluded.

    Since Russia’s principal demand — keep NATO away from its borders — is (a) reasonable, and (b) easily achieved, Putin may have miscalculated that the leaders of the US and UK would be so willing to risk war for nothing. A miscalculation, not a delusion. And if both Biden* and the UK’s Johnson were not desperately trying to change the subject from their declining poll numbers, it quite likely would not have been a miscalculation.

    Whatever happens, the clear winner is going to be China.

  53. How can you possibly write that after seeing the way the Deep State went after Trump. There is waaaaay too much money at stake for them to let it just go away without a fight.

    Because I’ve seen the way the Deep State went after Trump.

    They were miserably unsuccessful at stopping his election in 2016, nearly as bad at stopping his agenda while president, and stopping him in 2020 blew up one of their most important tools. That is, endless and easy vote fraud.

    Worse, they’ve proven to be disastrously incompetent at achieving important tasks like passing their legislative agenda, ending an unpopular war, and fooling people into believing that events aren’t their fault.

    Their clumsy attempt to make the January 6th rally into a second civil war just makes them look foolish- they can’t even give a straight answer when asked if the FBI had assets at the rally.

    I won’t even get into the covid fiasco, which is presently blowing up in their faces. Or inflation, which is yet another political catastrophe descending upon them.

    These people are fools- and I don’t care how many credentials they have hanging on the wall or how many IQ points they can stack up, either.

    Or how much money they have at stake. I know it’s a cliche, but things work until they don’t. And in my opinion the whole paradigm that allowed these people to prosper is collapsing.

  54. Putin’s hazard has nothing to do with anything either the U.S. or Europe will do or not do. It’s entirely from the Ukrainians themselves and a decrepit, corrupt, ill prepared and supplied Russian Army. One that’s only able to keep up the bare pretense of an attack threat by denuding an actively disputed border. Russians already know a lot about quagmires, we’ll see if they’re stupid enough to jump into one deliberately.

  55. Xennady: You don’t address what I objected to: “Hence I predict we’ll soon see a major candidate for office notice that NATO has no reason to exist and propose it should not- and it will disappear like a soap bubble.”
    Not a chance.
    Yes, I believe the Deep State are incompetent idiots, and the system is about to crash. But they’re not going to just give up without a fight, they’re going to blow everything up, because otherwise they’re all going to prison, or end up swinging from poles.

  56. Brian: “Yes, I believe the Deep State are incompetent idiots, and the system is about to crash. But they’re not going to just give up without a fight …”

    Agreed. The question is — who are the Deep State going to be fighting?

    History says that corrupt incompetent regimes are often destroyed from the outside. The rot was inside, but it took some push from outside to bring the rotten structure down. Sometimes that push has been military, sometimes economic. Our Deep State today is very vulnerable on both those fronts.

    Our politicians are steadily ensuring the withdrawal of the “Consent of the Governed”. They have lots of power to make our lives miserable — but they have rapidly declining power to resist an external threat.

  57. Look at how viciously they went after Trump. Tells you everything. He was a legitimate outsider, and they were legitimately scared.
    Their only threat is from someone who can get inside, to the levers of power, and clear them out. An external threat will actually only strengthen them, because it will let them consolidate their powers.

  58. Palin was actually the prototype for Trump. She trusted the establishment Republicans, and look where it got her.

    This isn’t a case of “Democrat vs. Republican”, this is a case of “oligarchy vs. general public”, and both parties have become unified and complicit in it all in the capital.

    I’m not sure where this ends–I’d point out that there was a similar structure in place in both the Soviet Union and Ceaucescu’s Romania. When the time came, the “nomenklatura/deep state” evaporated in the face of the general public’s ultimate realization of what was going on. You can analyze the end of the Soviet Union as “the majority figuring out the con”, just the same way you can Romania. Similar realizations are happening here in the US, and across the “Western System”.

    No idea at all how that’s going to play out. The January Sixth persecutions are a symptom–They recognize that they did not, in the final analysis, control those people or those passions. Unlike, say, the BLM and Black Bloc groups, which are fairly obviously under at least the nominal control of the Democrats.

    I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: Ignore this stuff at your peril, oligarchs. Most of what you’re doing is the equivalent of a steam engineer shutting off the release valve, and painting over the pressure gauges. The end result will be the same.

    What really irritates me is the general incompetence on display. I could live with the Illuminati running things behind the scenes, but I do demand that they run things effectively and more-or-less fairly. That ain’t what’s going on, and the denouement will not be pretty.

    I heard someone say something the other day that floored me, both because of where it was said, and who was saying it–Something to the effect of “Well, we’re gonna have to hang a few of them, before they take us seriously…”. “Them” being the politicians in Olympia, who’re suddenly trying to force-unionize most of the trades here in Washington State. Among many other usurpations of power that they’re making a play for, in the shadows. Not going to end well, at all.

  59. Yes, I believe the Deep State are incompetent idiots, and the system is about to crash.

    No disagreement here.

    But they’re not going to just give up without a fight, they’re going to blow everything up, because otherwise they’re all going to prison, or end up swinging from poles.

    My take on your statement here is that they’ve already been fighting a good long time and they’ve already blown everything up, in a certain sense.

    Their only threat is from someone who can get inside, to the levers of power, and clear them out.

    I agree. Hence the panicked attacks on Trump.

    But this was about my prediction that a future politician would end NATO. I think that the way that hypothetical outsider gets access to those levers of power is by proposing popular political actions that the Deep State cannot, so that the disaffected public can be mobilized for reform. Trump did this, well enough to win elections.

    What next? As Mike K noted above, NATO has no reason to exist. I think there is precious little support for that organization outside the Beltway laptoperoti and it has survived only because no one cared enough to make an issue out of it.

    I will note that the Deep State is very interested in maintaining the existence of NATO, despite most members not meeting their defense commitments made to us. I further note that right now this interest in NATO is precipitating a major crisis with Russia, which could plausibly lead to nuclear war. I yet further note that the American people have flat zero interest in going to war over Ukraine, no matter what, period.

    Hence, I conclude that the Deep State’s politically idiotic attachment to NATO is a significant political vulnerability which a competent outsider could use to get access to those levers of power and dethrone the Deep State idiots.

    And if that hypothetical outsider is competent enough to have a chance, then they will certainly have noticed this vulnerability- and I propose that they will act upon it, too.

  60. Still confused by your claim that it might “will disappear like a soap bubble” after conceding how they fought Trump so viciously. The military wouldn’t even withdraw troops from Syria or Afghanistan after being ordered to, how are they going to react if someone attempts to wind NATO down?

  61. Brian: “… how are they going to react if someone attempts to wind NATO down?”

    Keep an eye on some of the other factors in play. Every man, woman, child, transgender, illegal alien in the US currently owes $100,000 as our individual shares of the National Debt. And that is minor compared to our shares of the unfunded mandates, like Social Security and Medicare which so many expect to receive. There will be a financial Day of Reckoning — some day.

    When that particular pigeon comes home to roost, there are going to have to be cut backs some day — no matter how much the Political Class hates them. Cut Social Security or cut NATO? Easy choice.

  62. Yawn. Been hearing that for decades now. Ain’t gonna be no “hard choices” made. They’re just going to inflate and borrow until things collapse.

  63. The military wouldn’t even withdraw troops from Syria or Afghanistan after being ordered to, how are they going to react if someone attempts to wind NATO down?

    The military did leave Afghanistan, as you may have heard. They just didn’t want to leave in such a way to do something popular for Trump and thus give the Bad Orange Man a win.

    The problem for these folks is that now they’ve marked themselves as just another set of partisan democrats and not the Sacred Warriors Who Keep Us Safe(tm).

    This fact isn’t some strange and irrelevant triviality that no one cares about or will notice- it’s a key part of the collapse of the regime.

    I think these so-called military professionals are going to get a h3ll of a lot less deference going forward from essentially everyone, except of course the people who rely upon the foreign presence of the US military to protect their foreign investments.

    That is, a tiny and unpopular minority of the US population.

    So again, my prediction is that some ambitious politician will notice all this and react accordingly, proposing that NATO end. Then, should such person win election, they will replace all the witless mediocrities infecting the Pentagon who wouldn’t follow orders with officers who will- and bye bye NATO.

    This obviously presumes that the US has some sort of functioning national political system.

  64. “This obviously presumes that the US has some sort of functioning national political system.”
    Well, yeah, that’s our difference right there…not a minor presumption you’re making…

  65. They’re just going to inflate and borrow until things collapse.

    Also: What sort of scenario do imagine in which the system collapses and NATO still exists?

    That seems extra dubious, in my opinion.

  66. Well, yeah, that’s our difference right there…not a minor presumption you’re making…

    True. But of course a lot depends on the exact nature of the collapse. I think we’ll keep a functioning political system until at least 2024.

    I could be wrong, though.

  67. “Also: What sort of scenario do imagine in which the system collapses and NATO still exists?”
    No, my position is that we don’t live in a world where sane budget choices are going to be made, like “let’s cut NATO funding in order to save Social Security.” We’re just going to keep funding both until suddenly we can’t afford either. I have no idea when that will happen. If you would have told most people what the current debt would be in 1995 they would probably have predicted hyperinflation already.

  68. ‘war is a racket’ as currently practiced with the two (three) fronts in Afghanistan, Iraq, Yemen, a whole generation were maimed and killed, to protect Suleimani (this is why when he was rightly judged, they treated him like the Rancor) what was the point in Afghanistan, with the ISI sowing the Taliban like Cadmus teeth, this was what Dakota Meyer realized, why border outposts in the Korengal, if you are to give them up, totes fine, maybe it’s always been thus, we see how General Flynn, Senior Chief Gallagher, Major Gant were all treated, how McCrystal, Nance, Milley all advanced in rank and prestige, I guess it’ s like Sallust spoke of how long it took to nap Jugurtha, because everyone except Marius were otherwise occupied, (Sallust was a partisan of Caesar, so he may be biased, for the Populares over the Optimates,) When I read Colonel Hackworth and how he hung up his uniform, I thought he was a shirker, but he was more ahead of the ball, this is different from those that wanted the enemy to win, in Hanoi, in Tehran,

  69. We’re just going to keep funding both until suddenly we can’t afford either.

    I’d agree, except I think the present political establishment is so vulnerable on so many issues that I suspect it won’t survive to that point. Time will tell.

    I guess it’ s like Sallust spoke of how long it took to nap Jugurtha, because everyone except Marius were otherwise occupied…

    I’m of the opinion that one big honking reason why Yurrop became so technologically dominant for a while was that there was no regime that was capable of stuffing genies back into boxes. Thus, when some European invented something new, he was able to leave any given jurisdiction if his invention wasn’t well received- and eventually the various nations of Europe stopped trying to prevent technological progress because their rulers realized if they didn’t accept advancement, some other country would.

    Thus, I think it would have been better for ancient civilization if the Romans had been unable to crush the Jugurthan Kingdom- and Carthage too, for that matter.

    Water under that proverbial bridge, now.

  70. Brian: “They’re just going to inflate and borrow until things collapse.”

    What history suggests is the collapse is a process, not an overnight event. Rome had been sliding downhill for a long time (centuries?) before the barbarians sacked the city. Weimar Germany had been inflating the currency and making desperate adjustments for years before the final collapse. We have been living through that kind of collapse process for at least quarter of a century, arguably half a century.

    History also suggests that collapse is the end of a chapter, not the end of the story. Italy is still there today. Germany is still there. Changed, but not gone. NATO will go, and the world will go on. Whether that world will be a better place or a worse place remains to be seen.

  71. Like it or not, European disunity and conflict has actually been the “great enabler” for European dominance. Outside of Japan, few nations outside Europe were able to adapt to the new warfare brought in by the Age of Exploration. The ferment of that era was almost entirely European, and when coupled with the facts of their demographics and disease history? The Europeans fell into a dominant position almost by accident–Much the way the internecine Greek warfare taught them the lessons they needed to have, in order to equip them with the cultural and military tools necessary to enable Alexander.

    The EU and all that? Actually acting as a choke and a brake on European power. All those internecine wars were actually what made Europe the power it was, and now that they’ve ceased? Well, they’re not going to be bothering everyone else very much, going forward as they are to the grave. Birth rates tell the tale–Dynamic, growing civilizations don’t have below replacement-rate birth rates. Static and decaying ones do, however.

  72. “What history suggests is the collapse is a process, not an overnight event.”
    As Hemingway wrote,
    “How did you go bankrupt?” Bill asked.
    “Two ways,” Mike said. “Gradually and then suddenly.”

    I feel quite certain that the likes of Klaus Schwab, and Zuckerburg/Gates/Bezos, etc., aren’t going to be the heroes of the 21 century…

  73. “À la lanterne!” will most likely be their epitaph, once the bills come due.

    Either that, or they’re going to try to leverage some sort of global Jubilee, which I think we might be in the midst of. It’ll be a scam, no matter what.

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