August 22, 2017

No bottom in sight for losing in Afghanistan, as Pentagon tells war-weary Silent Majority to drop dead

After the Pentagon brass formally hijacked our foreign policy in April when they coerced the Trump administration into pursuing regime change in Syria, and then intensifying our commitment to the largest exporter of jihadism when they gave hundreds of billions worth of weapons to Saudi Arabia, the announcement last night of a troop surge in Afghanistan comes as no surprise.

Now that the Pentagon party is back in power, it is the military elites who will raid the treasury to inflate a bubble, after eight years of the Wall Street party inflating a bubble for the financial elites.

What did shock most people, though, was the total lack of commitment to any clearly defined objectives for winning -- or rather, any clearly defined criteria for declaring that Uncle Sam has officially "gone bust" in Afghanistan and is getting the hell out.

So far, even though they hate our guts, the militaries of Afghanistan and Pakistan have not attacked American soil, nor have terrorist groups from either country -- how many American civilians are an acceptable number killed if the war escalates to that level? A hundred civilians? A thousand civilians? Another September 11th?

Over 2000 American soldiers have already died there -- will 5000 dead be enough? Or 10,000 dead?

Over 1 to 2 TRILLION dollars have already been wasted there -- will 5 trillion dollars be enough? Or 10 trillion dollars?

Over 16 years have already been squandered there -- will 30 years be enough? Or 100 years?

Last night the Pentagon signaled that it is willing to send every last soldier into the meat grinder, waste every last dollar that the government has or that it can borrow, and spend every last year of our country's existence occupying Afghanistan. Anything less would be "taking options off the table".

The refusal to level with the war-weary American people will not be matched in communications with our allies. Certainly the other NATO leaders will know how many troops we're sending, how much weaponry, how many vehicles, and roughly how much that all costs.

More importantly, the various warring factions within Afghanistan will know the facts -- they're right there on the ground, you think they're not going to be able to tell whether an additional 4000 vs. 40,000 troops have started climbing up their mountains? Or whether an additional $10 billion vs. $100 billion worth of equipment has started driving down their roads?

The Afghan forces will have the keenest awareness of how much the American presence will have grown by, and how it is being used. They don't need to tune in to CNN to figure that out.

So the only people who will be in the dark are the American people, and the Pentagon preemptively dressed them down for even thinking about asking for a commitment not to go beyond certain limits for troops deployed, dollars spent, and years gone by.

This is no different from the Wall Street behavior and attitude when it was their party in power under Obama. There was no limit to how low interest rates would go, nor how long they would be kept that low, nor how many trillions of dollars the Fed would burden its balance sheet with in order to bail out the financial elites. Anyone asking those questions was told to shut up and just go along with the bailouts, or else there would be apocalyptic consequences for the economy.

Now we're told that if we don't bail out the Pentagon, arms dealers, and defense contractors forever and ever, our national security will collapse. Same BS, different vendor.

Our ruling class has escalated beyond callousness toward its subjects, to outright hostility against them. The elites are not only going to continue sucking as much blood as possible out of America's body, they have now opened fire on anyone who tries to pull the parasite away from its half-dead host.

Doubling down on their part will only cause doubling down on the people's part -- next time it won't be a magnanimous deal-maker who the voters send to negotiate with the Swamp. It will be a remorseless Terminator, leading a larger army of single-minded machines. The mere specter of revolution is the only thing that has ever caused a parasitic elite class to change its ways and begin running society for the good of the people.

But since Trump is only the initial good cop, expect the civil war / revolution atmosphere to get worse over the short term.

August 21, 2017

Immigration obstruction, from liberal cabinet heads to Hispanic-majority Border Patrol agents

An article in the LA Times reviews the data on immigration enforcement so far during the Trump administration, pointing to the same conclusion I and others have reached for months now -- that the picture is largely unchanged from the Obama era, other than illegal border crossings being down.

Even there, they have risen for the past three straight months, likely showing that the initial drop was due to would-be immigrants believing that they would not be able to live and work illegally in the new era of Trump, therefore not bothering to try crossing the border.

Now that it is becoming clear that there's no wall in sight, that deportations are lower than under Obama, that Obama's catch-and-release program is still de facto policy, that DACA is still in effect, and that the courts tie up any attempt to control the flow of foreigners, the immigrants' perception has shifted toward a more cautious willingness to start crossing the border illegally all over again.

The longer the lack of strong immigration action persists, the more convinced the immigrants will become of the weakness of the American border, and they will keep crossing more and more until they're back at Obama-era levels again.

As for deportations falling, the LA Times quotes an ICE spokeswoman who assures us without any numbers that there has merely been a shift in the type of deportation -- from the meaningless definition of turning people back right at the border, to removing people who have actually settled somewhere in the interior of the country.

The lack of numbers is telling because every other claim is backed up by statistics, whether released to the public or to the investigative reporter by request. Trump, his team, and his rationalizers in the media and the general public can quote how much illegal border crossings have fallen, down to the percentage point.

If there has really been a surge in true deportations, and a decline only in the fake deportations, everyone would be touting it -- whether they were in favor, saying look at the good job we're doing, or whether they were opposed, saying look how awful the situation is under Trump.

We'll see these stats anyway in the year-end report, so the total lack of specificity suggests they're trying to hide something in the meantime.

Even assuming that one type of removal has replaced another one-for-one, that still implies that the total investment in deporting illegals has not changed from Obama. The argument assumes that the amount of time, money, and manpower is exactly the same as it was under Obama, only being allocated to the interior rather than the border.

Yet we expect a greater investment under Trump, not the same old amount. Why don't we have twice the money and twice the manpower devoted to this problem now, allowing not just a substitution of one kind of enforcement for another, but an increase over that to boot?

As usual, Trump himself is not to blame -- he's certainly not the one ordering the investment to remain unchanged. But also as usual, Trump is not omnipotent -- close to the opposite, in fact, when it comes to immigration, since almost nobody in the government feels compelled to carry out his instructions on this issue, whether cabinet secretaries or lowly officers.

Quiet mutiny is the order of the day on immigration, as the outsider President has minimal political capital (perhaps even political debt) with which to inflict consequences on those who betray the policies he ran and won on.

We've seen General Kelly, as head of DHS, betray the immigration program by hiring Kevin McAleenan to lead US Customs and Border Protection, which includes Border Patrol. McAleenan is an open-borders Obama holdover who had been deputy at CBP, now promoted to the top by General Kelly.

But now I'm starting to wonder how much of the sabotage and subversion is due to the Border Patrol agents being majority Hispanic -- estimates are just over 50%, from the end of George W. Bush onward. I couldn't find stats on how much of the ICE agents are Hispanic.

Naturally, Hispanic agents are going to sympathize more with Hispanic border-crossers than Anglo agents would, especially if the Hispanic agents are not deeply rooted in this country. Ditto for deporting illegals within the interior who have already started to live and work here, perhaps with families here. If a majority of Border Patrol agents are Hispanic, that might explain why catch-and-release is still the norm.

VDare wondered the same thing in February when there were only initial reports of some agents not wanting to carry out Trump's orders. Most of us don't know that these BP agents are mostly Hispanic. I figured if they were federal agents, they were recruited around the nation and then assigned to the border. But it looks like they're recruited locally, where the population is much more Hispanic than the nation as a whole.

The LA Times article points to another series of problems that comes from the BP agents being mostly Hispanic, although they don't mention that this is because the applicant pool is so Hispanic. Namely, that such a large fraction of the applicants fail for really bad reasons -- not passing the drug test, having engaged in human trafficking, having dealt drugs, not passing a lie detector test, and so on. Anglos would pass these background checks at far higher rates.

VDare also discussed the criminal consequences of having such a Hispanic BP force -- soaring corruption, sometimes with agents who may not even be American citizens working on behalf of Mexican drug cartels.

One solution to this problem, without making it explicitly racial or ethnic, would be to begin recruiting drives from the Rust Belt states that flipped for Trump. They have among the lowest rates of immigrant residents. It could be framed as helping out the economically left-behind workers of the Rust Belt, giving them something patriotic to do for decent pay until the factories start coming back. I favor Western Pennsylvania -- Appalachians are territorial, and would be natural border agents.

A second solution would be to re-assign deployed members of the armed forces -- Americans ought to protect America instead of Afghanistan. If there are fewer BP agents under Trump than under Obama, and if the goal of adding 5000 seems out of reach, then just cut the number who are in Germany by 5000. They will pass the background checks more or less with no problems, and they won't need very much additional training. It would also boost their morale, giving them something clearly productive to do to defend their country, rather than ask why the fuck we're still in Afghanistan.

Other better solutions may be out there, too -- but they certainly will not come from the cheerleader squad who just chant "never sick of winning" no matter what the numbers continue to show. While that cuts out a fair share of hardcore Trump supporters, it does not include the immigration single-issue people like Mark Krikorian, Ann Coulter, CIS, and immigration beat reporters at conservative media outlets like Breitbart and Lifezette, or frankly the LA Times.

I've seen no sign that they're going to rationalize whatever the data say just because a hardliner won the election -- there are so many sources of subversion throughout the government and the private sector employer base, and Trump is not a literal God-Emperor who knows all of the facts (especially with General Kelly restricting what info the President receives), and who has the power to implement his wishes with the snap of a finger.

Now it is our job to help turn up the heat on those subversives on behalf of our only-human President.

August 15, 2017

Trump explodes "one side only" BS about Charlottesville

Now that's the Trump from the campaign trail, unshackled from his Pentagon boarding party handlers! Suck on this, General Kelly:



From a press conference about infrastructure, the questions from the press went immediately to Charlottesville, trying to pin him further against the wall. But here in an impromptu setting, his natural instincts came out and he called out the Violent Left in addition to dissing the White Nationalists, as well as lambasting the media for only portraying one side as violent.

He also did a good job of de-contaminating whatever normies were in attendance at the rally, who just wanted to protest the removal of a Confederate statue rather than throw up Nazi salutes, saying they were not violent, and pivoting to ask whether the statue-removers will target George Washington and Thomas Jefferson next, since they were slaveholders too.

Great comeback, making the media and Establishment now stick up for the Violent Left and extremists who want to topple any historical monument on the grievance that all of American history is corrupted and stained by the legacy of slavery etc.

Larger lesson: Trump supporters need to do everything they can to remove the Pentagon boarding party from his cabinet. Easier said than done, but that must remain a top priority -- we see how he wins on his instincts, and gets led to the slaughter when the Generals pressure him into appeasing the executioners (which they do by design, to remove him from office).

August 13, 2017

Trump: invite big Dem to presser condemning "both sides" extremists

The media, Deep State, and Democrat party don't care about whoever got killed and injured today in Charlottesville. They're just using the event to score political points against Trump, his supporters, and their America-first vision, by collectively blaming all of them for the act of a marginal white nationalist.

That attempt to tar & feather all Trump voters as racist Nazis blew up in their faces during the election season, because everyone knows there aren't tens of millions of Nazis in America. Saying so made the anti-Trumpers sound utterly insane to normal people, and discredited whatever else they were trying to say about Trump's vision.

By the same token, the white nationalists should learn the same lesson: they were irrelevant to Trump's victory. There aren't enough of them to make a dent at the ballot box, and they were not the ones driving the narrative and news cycle -- that was Trump himself. Nor were his amplifiers on social media a bunch of white nationalist LARPers.

The attempt at making Trump repeatedly disavow the wannabe Nazis also failed to achieve the intended goal of putting Trump on the defensive. True, he doesn't want to have to respond to every simpering fag who screams out "Do you want the support of these white nationalists?!" Still, he truly does not identify with them or like them, so he can sincerely disavow them and not "give" anything to the enemy ideologically.

Now it is time to lob the collective blame grenade back over into the enemy's territory where it came from. The other side has already made clear that they intend to target all Republicans, even if they were vocal never-Trumpers. So we have to respond in kind by casting blame at the broadest level, as in the disruption of a Trump assassination performance that blamed the entire audience for contributing to the normalization of political violence.

Applied strongly enough, collective blame can prevent the rise of a violent minority, as the other side's majority cracks down on its black sheep to avoid further blame.

Toward that end, the best way forward for Trump is to invite a high-ranking Democrat to a joint press event where each one disavows and condemns the extremist violence coming from their own side, calling out specific groups, as well as a general statement about condemning political violence "no matter who commits it, and no matter who it targets".

He could invite Obama to condemn the cop killings committed by those radicalized by Black Lives Matter, as Trump condemns the church bombing and car attack by white nationalists.

He could invite Hillary Clinton to condemn Antifa -- after which Attorney General Sessions opens an investigation into them as a domestic terrorist organization, since the FBI has already begun to investigate the Alt-Right.

He could invite Joe Biden (who claims there's "only one side" in political violence) to condemn the Alexandria shooter who targeted Congressional Republicans as a whole.

He could invite the head of CAIR to condemn the radical Islamic terror killings from just the recent past.

It would be more powerful to have two or more big Democrats, and more Republicans than just Trump (although not some spineless cuck), to make the event more of a clear bipartisan team effort to tone down the rising political violence.

It's win-win for Trump: if they accept, he forces them to concede the point that everyone already knows, about liberals and Democrats being far more prone to collective violence, he forces a public apology and denunciation, and he avoids being portrayed as the "only side" responsible for collective violence.

If they refuse, he forces them to concede their hypocrisy about caring about political violence, and that they are tolerating and even encouraging future political violence by their side, while exploiting human tragedy just to score cheap shots against someone from the other side of the aisle. He comes off as magnanimous and says how sad it is that the other side cannot bring themselves to condemn the violence coming from their own side.

Either way, they have to drop one of their major masks, and the media will have to follow suit.

If Trump is not allowed to pursue this winning strategy by the Pentagon coup members in his cabinet, then some other high-profile Republican could take his place, and invite similar-ranking Democrats. Tucker Carlson inviting Rachel Maddow, for instance -- and both broadcasting the same event during their shared primetime slot of 9pm.

We can never let the general public forget about who commits the vast bulk of collective violence in this country. And we won't have to draw a pie chart -- although both sides will be condemning extremists on their own side, the audience knows how many BLM cop killings or radical Islamic terror attacks there have been, as opposed to white nationalist murderers.

My guess is the other side would reject the bipartisan outreach effort, just as the White House press corps laughed at Mike Cernovich for asking them to condemn Antifa after a string of violent clashes throughout April, or as Virginia Governor McAuliffe just ignored a question from Breitbart London editor Raheem Kassam if he condemned Antifa. Oh well, at least the media, Deep State, and Democrats will never be able again to harangue Trump and his supporters about white nationalists.




August 10, 2017

Jewish elites divorcing Zionism, courting Islamism

One of the most interesting and unstudied shifts in contemporary politics is the gradual distancing away from Zionism by Jewish elites in the West, when some flavor of Zionism used to be obligatory during the last several decades of the 20th century.

But with Muslims growing among the grassroots thanks to mass migration, the liberal base choosing "Islamophobia" as their bigotry boogeyman to battle, and Wall Street wanting to open up Muslim societies to foreign investment, the Jewish elites of the 21st century have little choice but to slink away from Zionism and develop at least a friendly working relationship with Islamism. And with Israel's waning military dominance in the Middle East, the Pentagon-led GOP has less and less need for Jews who are Zionist.

This represents just the latest case of a Jewish managerial elite favoring whichever group is rising in power -- making peace with them so that the middleman minority elite can be left alone to manage entire sectors of the society. The Ashkenazim played this role in the German and Slavic societies for century after century, without any thought of establishing their own ethno-state or supporting such a state at a distance. The Sephardim played a similar role under the Muslim rulers of Medieval Spain and, when they were expelled in 1492, under the Ottomans.

In America, too, most Jews didn't care about Israel during the first half of the 20th century. They wanted to rise up the ranks of the managers of the newly industrialized American nation. Not even the Holocaust made American Jews fixate on Israel as a supposed release valve nation.

It wasn't until the Israeli military began defeating the Arab armies around them, including the mighty nation of Egypt, that American Jews started to feel patriotic about Israel. That is also what brought it to the attention of the federal government, who had decades earlier turned back boats of Jews fleeing the Nazis. Now that the Jewish state could offer something we wanted -- local muscle to apply against our enemies in the oil-rich Middle East -- suddenly the Pentagon wanted to be best buds.

But Israel has not won major battles for decades now, making their triumph during the late 1960s and '70s look like more of a fluke. When a grassroots nationalist army like Hezbollah manages to drive you out of their homeland, Uncle Sam is going to start questioning your ability to serve as one of the "local cops on the beat" (Nixon).

Of course our #1 ally in the Middle East, Saudi Arabia, has not had much better luck at pushing around its neighbors (ISIS in Iraq in Syria, invasion of Yemen, stand-off with Qatar). But at least the Saudis are sitting on a shitload of oil, unlike Israel, and we've been partners with them for far longer. Among the Pentagon brass, this means a weakening concern over Israel, and relatively more emphasis on Saudi Arabia.

The Pentagon is the main power group that controls the GOP; the junior partner is the Cultural Right, including evangelical Christians. And they have made the opposite shift in emphasis -- after September 11th, they've become more suspicious of Muslims generally and of Jihadi Arabia in particular, while growing ever more attached to Israel as the site of the Holy Land and "the only democracy" in the increasingly unstable region.

These diverging trends have created cracks in the Jihadist-Zionist coalition.

So, Zionists can no longer rely on the elites on the Pentagon / GOP side to reflexively have Israel's back. Can they turn instead to the Democrats? After all, the main power group controlling the Dems is the finance sector, and that is overwhelmingly Jewish, along with lesser power groups controlling the Democrats, such as the media and academia. Recall the mismatched demographics of the two parties: GOP elite leans jihadist, while base leans Zionist; Dem elite leans Zionist, while base leans jihadist.

They're bound to find sympathy there, but slowly those Jewish elites are beginning to cool on the idea of kneejerk defense and promotion of Israeli interests.

The main interest of the big Wall Street banks is opening up new countries for investors and central banking concerns. Israel is not that big of a market to break into -- but Iran, with nearly 10 times the population of Israel, is. That's the real reason why the Democrats were so big on removing the sanctions against Iran -- so the financial elites could finally start investing there and selling there, which is of no concern to the Pentagon.

They had to work in a nuclear non-proliferation angle to throw a bone to the Pentagon / GOP, but the main goal reflected the financial elites who control the Democrats. That's also their main worry about Trump pulling out of the Iran deal -- they don't care about nuclear weapons, but about the uncertainty that such moves will create for the investors and bankers who thought they were going to have a nice sanction-free business environment in Iran.

Aside from Wall Street wanting to get along with Iran for investment purposes, even if that displeases their co-ethnics in Israel, the Democrats also face anti-Israeli sentiment from their electoral base. Some are Muslim themselves, while most are liberal white people who are obsessed with eradicating "Islamophobia" from their society. This includes a rising share of younger Jewish liberals.

From these various grassroots factions, the movement to Boycott / Divest / Sanction Israel has grown rapidly, and within another bastion of the Democrats -- college campuses. This movement has mainstreamed the view of Israel as a European colonialist invader that has been exploiting the native population of Palestinians. Since the subjects are Muslim, that makes the state of Israel ipso facto Islamophobic.

The media have to both reflect the interests of the power groups who are their senior partners -- like Wall Street -- as well as resonate with the views of their lay liberal audience. Both of those sources are increasingly hostile toward Israel, or at least losing patience, so the media can no longer present a ceaseless narrative of "Israel has done nothing wrong".

None of these shifts has been completed, and the process is still ongoing. But it is clear in which direction the trends are headed. Whether you're a member of the Jewish elite that controls the banks, the media, academia, or Democrat politics, you have no choice but to distance yourself from Zionism. And the weakening Jewish state offers you little in return nowadays anyway, so that just makes the decision easier.

Note that this change is not away from Israel-first and toward America-first -- far from it! It is back to the rootless cosmopolitan stereotype, where there are no nations, and you simply throw in with whoever happens to be rising in power, wealth, and influence.

These days, that includes radical Islamists and their liberal sympathizers: "Behead those who blaspheme Allah!" = "Fire the Islamophobic bigots from their jobs!" A century ago it would not have included Muslims at all, and in another century, it may go back to not including Muslims. Goy group A, goy group B -- as long as you ingratiate yourself with them, they'll leave you alone to manage the complex society.

Nowhere is this tendency most striking than in the devil himself, George Soros. A recent NYT op-ed laments the punishment that Soros is taking from the government of the Jewish state, which has grown hostile to the world's premier promoter of dissolving demographic barriers between nations. That would erode the Jewish character of Israel, and Soros the progressive globalist has been happy to push for turning it into a melting pot of Jews and Palestinians.

Mr. Soros’s humanitarianism and universalism represent an expression of post-Holocaust Jewish identity that is anathema to the hard-line nationalism of Mr. Netanyahu’s governing coalition, which adheres to the classic Zionist mission that sought to end anti-Semitism and diaspora existence by gathering all Jews in the historic land of Israel. As in this case with Hungary, Mr. Netanyahu is increasingly aligning Israel with illiberal, autocratic states like Russia, Turkey and Egypt. The ultimate cynicism of such alliances is visible in Mr. Netanyahu’s willingness to tolerate the anti-Semitism of the global right-wing nationalist camp if it will bolster the Greater Israel movement.

Don't take the writer's word for it: Soros strongly came out against both Putin and Assad during their joint liberation of Aleppo from the jihadist militias. That proves that Soros doesn't care about Arabs in general, but only those who do not resist globalist interventions and takeover of their societies, and the Islamic radicals who have been trying to overthrow Assad are thoroughly international in scope.

The irony of Soros being opposed to Israel as a Jewish ethno-state, and the Israeli government being hostile toward Soros, is lost on the "Joooz" dead-enders among the Alt-Right. They think powerful globalist Jews must be pro-Israel, and that Israel would promote such individuals as agents of Israeli influence.

Someone writing for one of their blogs tried to get the message out two years ago, pointing out how fruitless and backwards it was for the Twitter troll armies to descend on globalist Leftist Jews with supposed killshots like "How about open borders for Israel, then, huh?" -- when the target is on the record enthusiastically wanting Israel to open its borders, make peace with Palestinians a la the South African whites did with the colonized blacks, and so on and so forth.

As the internal dynamics of the Democrat side lead more and more elite Jews to distance themselves from Zionism, these attacks will become even more outdated. Jewish elites are going back to rootless cosmopolitanism, so why would they bind themselves to a particular state like Israel? That would make them Islamophobic in the eyes of their grassroots base, and it would halt the investments made in Israel's enemies like Iran by the Wall Street banks who are their senior partners on Team Democrat.

August 7, 2017

Trump movement cannot brag about still-worsening economy

Trump is looking for some good news to give the American people hope, and to attack his detractors, given the overall disaster of a nation America has become since Inauguration, thanks to the ever intensifying elite sabotage of Trump himself and the broader populist-nationalist movement.

There is a widening Deep State coup in plain sight, a first ever and a new low in the history of our democracy. The media are complicit in this coup, operating 24/7 as agents of the Deep State against the Trump movement. Another low in how our institutions function.

Healthcare continues to be a disaster that is only getting worse.

Tax reform will take forever, crowding out important priorities, and will only manage to cut taxes without cutting spending, making our debt situation worse. That may get compounded by a $1 trillion infrastructure program, which would be fine if it were actually paid for. The Democrats are the party of "spend with already collected taxes," while Republicans are about "spend with ever ballooning debt".

And we stand ready to get sucked into at least one and possibly more new pointless wars, on top of remaining in Afghanistan -- maybe North Korea, maybe somewhere else in the Middle East, maybe Venezuela, and possibly Russia itself. We will fail everywhere as usual since the first Korean War, the failure will cost trillions of dollars (without raising taxes = more debt that balloons from interest), and these failures will be the coup de grace to military morale.

Not to mention the continued demographic trends that threaten the stability and prosperity of America and the American people, as illegal immigrants remain here in the same numbers as under Obama (15-20 million), and as the same number of new immigrants are invited in per year.

Other than that, things are turning out wonderfully!

Now, Trump and his voters realized that we wouldn't Make America Great Again in the first six hours, days, weeks, or months -- but once it gets to six years, and the cheerleaders are still telling us to wait, well...

And it is not the fact that we haven't made total progress in such a brief time, it's that in most areas we haven't even been moving the ball down the field. It has either stayed still or has been moved back toward our own end zone. That makes it no longer a matter of "just give it more time" -- sure, a little more time in the current direction, and Trump will get removed or assassinated. We need to reverse these trends, not just let things go on for a longer time.

Measures of voter support do not count as accomplishments per se. Trump has more followers on social media, still draws large crowds, and would win re-election against Hillary or a generic Democrat -- so what? The election is over, it's time to apply his popular support to some area outside of the ballot box, to actually accomplish the agenda that he campaigned on, given that the Establishment will not help us out one bit and will eagerly sabotage that agenda.

So far, the bright spot that Trump has been trying to point to, in contrast to all that garbage, is the economy, and primarily the stock market. Nothing has changed from the campaign trail when he said it was just a big fat bubble, and now that the Democrats are out of the White House, the Fed can safely pop the bubble by raising interest rates and be able to pin the blame on a Republican president. Most of the rise has been driven by a handful of mega-companies, none of them components of the Trumpian goods-based economy -- over-valued tech like Facebook, Google, Apple, Amazon, etc.

Job creation is no better than under Obama, still way down per capita compared to even the Reagan years when we were already declining as a great economy. The jobs are part-time, low-paying, and in dead-end or bubble sectors like healthcare, education, and other service staples of the gig economy. We can't even joke about retail jobs anymore, since those are going to Amazon fulfillment centers -- just as low-paying as retail, but now in more dystopian workplaces.

So just like Trump said on the campaign trail, the unemployment numbers are phony -- some guy working 10 hours a week as a barista counts as employed, and if he quits that altogether and decides not to look for anything new, he's still employed!

Wage growth has been falling since Inauguration Day, continuing the stagnation of the past several years.

As all these aspects of income and wealth have declined, expenses have shot through the roof. Median home prices rose for yet another year, they are now up 50% compared to the low of 5 years ago, and key regions like Southern California are higher than before the housing bubble popped last time. And tuitions keep skyrocketing. With so little income growth, that means debt keeps rising -- or that people are going without the thing in the first place, like renting instead of owning a home.

And most of the goods and services that we buy are not getting better in quality. Especially the big-ticket expenses like housing, healthcare, and education.

In other words, our standard of living has continued the deterioration of the past 40 years, and the conditions are worse than they were before the last Great Recession.

If the economic news were truly so much better over the past six months, you personally and many people you know or even run into and chat up would have great news to share -- a new full-time job, higher wages or salary, in a non-bubble sector that won't get wiped out when the Fed raises interest rates or the government scales back your workplace's grant funding, not to mention cheaper housing, cheaper cars, cheaper food, cheaper everything, and less and less debt.

Although enthusiasm and hope were high at the outset, six months later reality is starting to set in. It's not that people think Trump himself failed, or hasn't tried. Most will blame the rigged system, the Swamp, and all the other forces that had been fucking this country over for decades, and will continue to even with an anti-Establishment guy in the White House.

They will conclude that it's going to take a major assault on those Establishment forces in order to reverse longstanding trends, not just a kind-hearted negotiator who wants to make deals and bring everybody together. They are going to want Trump to say, "Hey I tried with the nice guy routine, and now it's time to get tough and not take "no" for an answer".

In the meantime, that is the attitude that Trump himself and his supporters must take. There is little more than symbolic token victories to point to so far, other than refraining from getting involved in yet another disastrous globalist trade deal or climate deal. That is more of a halt than a reversal, and the re-negotiation of NAFTA so far is leaving manufacturing by the wayside, and focusing more on agriculture, finance, and the media.

The more we try to gloat about the stock market, as though ordinary Americans own any stock and as though it weren't a bubble, and the more we try to spin the jobs reports as anything other than a continuation of the trend from Carter through Reagan, Bush, Clinton, Bush Jr, and Obama -- the more out-of-touch we're going to sound to ordinary Americans, including Trump supporters.

The support of the masses is the sole, only, and exclusive leverage of the Trump movement, since it has no support but rather outright hostility in all elite institutions. So we must stay as in-touch with normal Americans as possible, or lose the only strength we have at the negotiating table against the elites.

If that means being brutally honest, so be it -- we can truthfully and easily tell people that the elites are still the problem since they're not honoring the election outcome, and continuing on with business as usual. Apart from being more honest and connecting better with the people's everyday lives, it will give them motivation to start mobilizing in one way or another against the elites. There is no other way to light a fire under the asses of our insulated and contemptuous elites.

The last thing we want to attempt is to tell the American people, or just Trump supporters, that everything is getting better, and to feel hopeful rather than worried about where things have been heading the first six months, and the next six months.

That will make them mistrust us, because they're not stupid and realize that the Establishment and its elites are a lot harder to force into serving the public than Trump made it seem during the campaign. And it will also keep them complacently or apathetically on the sidelines, leaving the movement and its President with nobody to have his back when and where it matters.

August 4, 2017

GOP: Zionist base, jihadist elite. Dems: jihadist base, Zionist elite

In the all-out effort to dump H.R. McMaster, a member of the neo-con Pentagon boarding party into the White House, the America-first movement is hammering away at the faultline that I explored in an earlier post and comments. In foreign policy, the GOP coalition is made up of those supporting Zionism (the Cultural Right) and those supporting jihadism (the Pentagon). The Zionist sympathizers come from the electoral base, while the jihadist sympathizers come from an elite power group.

Although the cracks in this coalition may have been there for awhile, they really started to widen before, during, and just after the long Middle East diplomatic trip. Israel got the cold shoulder, while Saudi Arabia got hundreds of billions worth of weapons and the iconic wizard globe picture.

After such a big let-down for the electoral base of the GOP, who were expecting a greater focus on the Holy Land than on decadent sandniggers dancing around with swords, there is a ripe opportunity to weaken base support for the Pentagon brass by driving home how little they care for Israel relative to Jihadi Arabia.

It's damn difficult to get Republicans to sour on the military, but if they see what grand purpose it's being mis-used for, they will totally be on board with shaking up our priorities to something more sensible. And while military priorities are not held by plebiscite, when even the Republican voters start to question the Pentagon's alliance with jihadists, that partnership is not going to last much longer.

This internal contradiction of the GOP is paralleled on the Democrat side as well. Their electoral base (Cultural Left) is aligned with jihadists, or Sunni extremists, as part of their war against Islamophobia -- which is never a "fear" of peaceful Muslims, but only the jihadist types, so that their struggle against Islamophobia enlists Muslim Brotherhood types like Linda Sarsour. But their party's elite power group is Wall Street, which is controlled by Jews rather than Muslims.

If somebody wanted to whip up the Democrat base against their own party's power elite, they could use the natural disgust that extremist Muslims have toward Jews, and say how dare our party be run by Jewish Wall Street. There would have to be some concrete policy Wall Street was pursuing that was against Muslims -- say, investing in Israel and therefore against the Palestinians. The BDS movement to boycott / divest / sanction Israel has mostly targeted another power group in the Democrat coalition that is disproportionately controlled by Jews -- higher ed -- but the logic is the same.

Just like Republicans and the military, you'd think it would be impossible to get hardcore Democrats to turn against academia, but the rapid spread of BDS shows that it can be done if they don't like the ends toward which higher ed is investing its money.

When the elite power groups are faced with the prospect of their electoral bases being totally opposed to the elite policies on a tribal group level, the elite group's first thought is to simply switch bases -- the Pentagon would take the Leftists against Islamophobia from the Democrats, and Wall Street would take the Israel-worshiping Christians from the Republicans.

That degree of re-alignment would take a long time. In the meantime, each power group tries instead to "grow their base" by "reaching across the aisle". McMaster hires a diversity consultant from the Muslim Brotherhood-esque CAIR (per Cernovich), while a university admin advertises its investments in Israel to draw in a larger applicant pool that is moderate and conservative.

Still, these largely amount to token gestures, and the two parties are stuck with the tension between their base and their elite power group.

Especially in a climate of populist uprisings, it looks like the outcome will be the base continuing to put pressure against the senior partners in their coalition, and reforming them from within. It will be Republican voters who turn the Pentagon away from its widespread support for Islamic extremists, and it will be Democrat voters who secure a student loan debt jubilee from the creditor class.

August 3, 2017

China has rarely controlled Korea throughout history, no puppet strings now either

In the ramping up of tensions between the Pentagon and North Korea, much is being made of China's supposed powerful influence over the Hermit Kingdom. We don't have much of a relationship with NK directly, but we do with China, and they have a strong relationship with NK, so if we pressure China, we can indirectly pressure NK.

The trouble with this argument is that China has rarely had control over the Korean Peninsula. Sure, they're the #1 destination by far for NK's exports, but by now we should know that economic sanctions rarely work, no matter how strong or how long, if the target is determined to resist.

What China would really need to have is geopolitical and military influence over NK. They do not. They don't even have a base in NK. Of course they have a larger and stronger military, but that's true for China and just about any other nation in the world, other than regional or super-powers. That doesn't mean those nations can be pushed around by China, or that they act as vassals of China.

And while China and NK have a history of Communism, so has China and the USSR -- and that didn't prevent the Sino-Soviet split. Just because they're ideological fellow travelers from the same rough part of the globe doesn't make the smaller one a satellite of the larger one. The closest European analogy would seem to be China as the USSR, NK as Yugoslavia, and SK as Greece.

In fact, when has China ever controlled Korea during its long history?

It turns out that it has only done so during one of its dynasties, the Han. China defeated what is now NK (though not SK) around 100 BC and left the Four Commanderies of Han, the principal and most enduring one being the Lelang Commandery, which was centered in what is now Pyongyang. Chinese rule lasted uncontested until roughly 100 AD, when the growing state of Goguryeo in northern Korea began chipping away at the Chinese presence until it was totally absorbed by 300.

That is the only long, stable period of Chinese control over Korea.

Northern Korea has been controlled by other states from mainland Northeast Asia, but they were not Chinese, even though some of them ruled over China as well as NK. They all belong to the nomadic Steppe empires that have flourished to the north of China for centuries -- Liao, Jurchen (Great Jin), and Mongol. And not all of these groups managed to conquer Korea if they also got China -- the Manchus ruled China from the 17th to 19th centuries, but did not get Korea.

China's first dynasty began around 1600 BC, so out of 3600 years it has only controlled NK for 200-400 of them, and even that was 2000 years ago.

Today's situation is the historical norm between China and NK. Expecting China to be able to pull on some puppet strings and have NK dancing however they want, at least in their geopolitical and military behavior, is writing a letter to Santa Claus.

The role of historical constraints on current foreign policy is not only unappreciated, it is not even thought of. See also: ignoring the long history of who has controlled who between Iraq and Iran. Since 500 BC, if the two were part of the same polity, Iran has always been the expanding power and Iraq the conquered power. Gee, what could possibly happen if we weaken the hell out of Iraq? Just maybe it will be Iran who fills the vacuum.

That is not to say that historical constraints are fixed forever. But it does require honesty about how unusual of a situation the Pentagon's plans are. Maybe they're well within historical norms, maybe they're mixed, maybe they're rare, and maybe they've never happened before. That has to be one of the first questions we ask when evaluating whether or not to proceed. Let's try to avoid what is a pipe dream from the perspective of thousands of years of history.

August 1, 2017

"De-funding" sanctuary cities -- by a whopping 0.5%

In another lesson in "reading beyond the headline," it turns out that the DoJ's supposed crackdown on sanctuary cities will de-fund less than 1% of federal grant money to state and local governments. From the LA Times:

The new policy, announced by the Department of Justice, will apply to all cities that get grants from the so-called Byrne Justice Assistance grant program, for which the administration has requested just over $380 million for the coming year.

So far, the new policy applies only to those justice assistance grants, which local jurisdictions can use for a wide variety of programs related to law enforcement, including drug treatment, witness protection and prisoner reentry programs.

Although the move carries considerable symbolism because of the high-profile debate over sanctuaries, the money involved is roughly half a percent of federal grants to state and local governments, according to figures from the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office.

Somehow I think the very wealthy cities that are being targeted will be able to withstand half a percent of their grant money being taken away -- whenever that's going to happen anyway. Here we are, half a year into the Trump era, and they haven't gotten squat taken away. And that's with Mr. immigration hardliner as the Attorney General -- c'mon Sessions, hit them with your best shot! Time is running out.

"Cracking down" on sanctuary cities makes me think of the National Guard storming the city and hauling illegals away by the hundreds every day in the largest 10 cities. Or tightening the screws on all federal funding the city gets, not just through the DoJ, and not just through one little program within the DoJ.

This fits into the general pattern we have seen, and probably will continue to see, with the most hot-button topic of the election season, immigration. Adrenaline junkies want to just pop the headline in their mouth and get amped up all day -- whether they're raging against it or pumping their fist in favor.

That allows the Establishment to do nothing but token gestures -- they will get the same reaction from the haters and fan-boys no matter what level of action they take, and since they want to preserve the status quo, just make it a minimal action.

That makes immigration one of the main issues on which we will have to try to primary the cucks -- not just national politicians trying to get into the Congress, but governors and state legislatures as well.

But in order to repeal and replace the Republican Establishment, we're first going to have to take a cold hard look at what is actually going on in the Trump era. If we just look at every headline and respond with "All right, never tired of winning!" then there is nothing to be upset over, and no reason to primary the GOP sell-outs.

A Panglossian tone will never motivate ordinary voters to get out and do the grassroots activities that need to get done in order for a populist and nationalist insurgency to take over the GOP.