The Bolshevik Great Experiment: One Hundred Years Later

Since the beginning of the centennial of World War I, I have been writing a series of essays about the war as the memory of events passes us by–a hundred years later. But as we approach the centennial of the Bolshevik Revolution, I find it nearly impossible to delimit my thoughts on this profound event in the history of the human race as if it were only a passage of the war, like the Somme, or American intervention, or the internment of enemy aliens.
There are so many narrations of the “event” itself. There are so many answers to the question “why.” There are so many clashing depictions of tectonic shifts in Russia and the world at that time, of Lenin, Trotsky, Dzerzhinsky and the rest as actors, heroes, villains, and (to some modern day sycophants) secular saints.
The inhuman cruelty, the killing capacity of this Marxist-Leninist movement which styled itself occasionally as the champion of the “people” (though much more often and much more truthfully as the vanguard of the proletariat on the march toward a revolutionary conflagration that would produce the new man) truly tests the bounds of human comprehension. Even if we take into account a group of recent historians who minimize standard historical estimates of total non-combat, democidal totals of deaths (based in part on recently found archival materials, but in part on soft hearts still loyal to the Great Experiment), the median calculation of Communist mortality by historians and demographers credits the Soviet Union of Lenin and Stalin with somewhere between eighteen and sixty-two million deaths beyond technically military losses. If we add up the democidal killings of spin-off Communist regimes across the globe, the totals are astronomical, with the estimates by historians, sociologists, demographers, and other serious analysts hovering around a hundred million human beings.

This post was published at Ludwig von Mises Institute on Oct 31, 2017.

Fake News: The Collapse of the MSM’s ‘Facebook Russian Bot’ Story

As 21WIRE said last year, the Russian hacking, or Russiagate story was a political hoax from the start. What this story can now demonstrate, is that for the last 18 months, the entire mainstream media has been promulgating a highly politicised, and relentless campaign of fake news designed to implicate Russia in an imaginary scandal. Leading the pack are former ‘papers of record’ The New York Times and The Washington Post, flanked by America’s premier broadcast TV propaganda outlet CNN.
Last week, we revealed how powerful politicians in Washington had pressured Facebook executives to come up with any evidence to support the Democratic Party’s theory of ‘Russian meddling,’ – demonstrating clear collusion between the Obama Administration and Silicon Valley corporation Facebook, with the goal of fabricating a scandal in order to scapegoat Vladimir Putin and the Russians for the electoral collapse of Hillary Clinton last November.
As a result, US-Russian relations have been sacrificed at the altar of petty partisan politics and a failing deep state agenda.
It certainly begs the question: with so much at stake, why would Washington and MSM lie and risk pushing global tensions closer to a world war level confrontation? If they are prepared to lie about this, what else are they prepared to lie about?
Consortium News Exclusive: The U. S. mainstream media is determined to prove Russia-gate despite the scandal’s cracking foundation and its inexplicable anomalies, such as why Russia would set up a Facebook ‘puppies’ page.
By Robert Parry
What is perhaps most unprofessional, unethical and even immoral about the U. S. mainstream media’s coverage of Russia-gate is how all the stories start with the conclusion – ‘Russia bad’ – and then make whatever shards of information exist fit the preordained narrative.

This post was published at 21st Century Wire on OCTOBER 5, 2017.

TRUMPDOM: The Curious World of Trump’s Foreign Policy Explained

It is barely seven weeks since Donald Trump became the 45th President of the United States. Perhaps too early to figure out the details of America’s foreign policy during his presidency. However, some broad contours of his policies are taking shape, which may provide pointers to what he is likely to do in the next four years.
These pointers are based partly on what Trump said during his election campaign and partly on what has happened since he became President. Actually, quite a lot has happened in the last seven weeks or so, including considerable turbulence in US domestic and foreign policy.
Before proceeding further, it may be useful to recall that Trump’s victory in the Nov. 2016 elections was unexpected. Most opinion polls and the mainstream media (MSM) predicted victory for Hillary Clinton, who was the candidate of the US Establishment and the ‘Deep State’ (DS), which includes the military-industrial complex, the intelligence agencies, the MSM, Wall Street, and the Jewish Lobby.
The DS is a permanent, unelected, group of institutions, lobbies, and individuals which wields enormous power from behind the scenes and continues to do so irrespective of who is the President and which party controls the US Congress. It is driven by the quest for money and power, among other things.
The present DS began taking shape almost thirty-five years ago when Jimmy Carter was President. There was a DS before that too, going back to the 1950s, which came into existence after the Second World War. However, it was much less powerful and entrenched than the present one. John F. Kennedy tried to defy it but did not succeed. Some believe he paid for it with his life.

This post was published at 21st Century Wire on MARCH 9, 2017.

Eastern Europe & World War III

Europe could become the site of a new global war in the East as tensions build there against refugees and the economic decline fosters old wounds. The EU is deeply divided over the refugee issue and thus it is fueling its own demise and has failed to be a stabilizing force. After five days of demonstrations, Romania’s month-old government backed down and withdrew a decree that had decriminalized some corruption offenses. They were still acting like typical politicians and looking to line their pockets. After one month, the people have rising up saying ‘We can’t trust this new government.’
On the eastern border of the EU, only a few hundred kilometers from Berlin as well as Vienna, there is a growing danger that the world will stumble into a global war primarily from through the incompetence of the politicians in the EU as well as in the East. The EU is more concerned about punishing Britain and trying to hold on to overpaid political jobs that to address the real issues facing Europe.

This post was published at Armstrong Economics on Feb 8, 2017.

Nationalism, the United States, and Cyclical Crises

In the coming year, the United States will remain the overwhelmingly dominant geopolitical power in the global system, and President-elect Donald Trump will be at the helm. His presidency will mark a turning point as the first significant shift towards nationalism at the center of the US political system.
As explained in our 2017 forecast, this rise in nationalism is a global trend, and one of three critical consequences of the 2008 financial crisis that will play a pivotal role in shaping geopolitics in 2017. (The other two are economic stagnation and instability in export-dependent countries.) Its rise stems from the rejection of the internationalist model that has dominated international relations since the end of World War II.
In places like Europe, it is easy to see why internationalism is losing favor. It is less obvious for the US. The European Union (EU) put in place policies and regulations that prioritized the Union’s survival over national interests, and this inherently creates conflicts of interest between the bloc and member states.
This was exacerbated by the 2008 financial crisis. Member countries saw their economies crash while their hands remained tied by Brussels, which was slow to act and offered a narrow range of Band-Aid solutions.

This post was published at Mauldin Economics on JANUARY 2, 2017.

Trump’s Showdown With the CIA

It doesn’t come more scathing than this. On nationwide television, U.S. President-elect Donald Trump rubbished the Central Intelligence Agency as ‘ridiculous’ for making claims that Russian hackers helped get him elected. The CIA – America’s foremost intelligence apparatus set up after the Second World War by then President Harry Truman – is supposed to be the guiding light for occupants of the White House on all matters geopolitical.
And here we have aspiring White House occupant Donald Trump telling the CIA to shut up.
Over the last week, the spy agency was quoted by both the Washington Post and New York Times as having informed anonymous government officials that there was ‘high confidence’ that Russian-sponsored hackers had interfered in the US presidential election in favor of Trump over his Democrat rival Hillary Clinton.
The alleged modus operandi to sway the election was the leaking of private emails to whistleblower site Wikileaks which implicated Clinton in big business corruption and fomenting foreign wars, among other scandals. It’s a sensational claim, especially given that the CIA or its unnamed official conduits quoted by the US’ two most prominent newspapers have provided zero evidence to support their contention of Russian malfeasance. Russia has flatly denied the accusations. As has Wikileaks.

This post was published at Sputnik News

The Elite is Accelerating Earth Changing Events in a Rush to Implant Hillary in Power

As we move into the final month prior to this year’s presidential election, the tempo of dramatic world events and developments that are breaking daily is mind-boggling. Every single day we are seeing more outrageously desperate actions on the part of the globalists and their US government minions. Among the latest unfolding developments this week all fast tracking towards world war against Russia is NATO’s violation of international law deploying AWACS (Airborne Radar Warning and Control system) in Syria despite only Syria and Russia possessing the legal right to control the embattled country’s airspace. With both US and Turkish boots on the ground in northern Syria and US-led coalition airstrikes regularly invading the sovereign nation’s airspace, recently targeting Syrian soldiers andplans to kill more, along with former acting CIA director Mike Morell’s recent call to begin killing Russian soldiers, the latest warpath rant comes from Army Chief of Staff General Mark Milley who is now threatening Russia (as well as China and Iran) with nuclear war. Spoken just like a true grade school bully on a playground, he boasts, ‘We will beat you harder than you have ever been beaten before!’ This is the kind of moronic leadership that rises to the top of the Empire food chain? I’m afraid so.
God help us when his most likely next commander-in-chief is the warmongering bulldog herself Hillary Clinton who’s not any more civilized nor humane. She’s already made it very clear that any real or perceived cyberspace attack on America coming from anywhere in the world constitutes an act of war and a military response against the cyber-perpetrators’ country. After already vowing to bomb Iran and with her constant accusations blaming Putin for everything gone wrong in her miserable life, including exposing her DNC corruption scandal responsible for rigging her presidential election, she is also all but promising to launch World War III against nuclear powered Russia. Incisive insider Paul Craig Roberts and even Putin have both said so. The neocon insanity that she represents is committed to perpetrating both suicidal and genocidal mass murder.
With a total of 7,100 US nuclear warheads as of August 2016 and an estimate reported two years ago of 2,150 operationally deployed nukes, America could destroy itself four times over while Russia’s 7,300 nuclear weapons would likely carry the same tremendous overkill power. When we’re all dead, it hardly matters who has what? As the Benghazi ringleader who gave the stand down order that sealed the fate of four murdered Americans would say,’What difference does it make?’ The sheer madness in control of our planet right now actually believes the elite can simply hunker down in their underground luxury bunkers, take a long nuclear winter’s nap and a few years later emerge like Rip Van Winkle unscathed in their grandiose fairy tale. Talk about madness!

This post was published at Lew Rockwell on October 8, 2016.

The Donald Versus KillBillary: War or Peace?

War: A Warning from the Past
Although history does not exactly repeat itself, it does provide parallels and sometimes quite ominous ones. Such is the case with the current U. S. Presidential election and the one which occurred one hundred years earlier.
The dominating question which hung over the 1916 campaign was whether the country would remain neutral in regard to the horrific slaughter which was taking place on the European battlefields in probably the greatest act of mass insanity ever recorded, World War I.
President Wilson had maintained that the U. S. would continue a policy of strict neutrality. By all indications, the nation wanted no part of the war, with the President’s own party at his nomination delivering an emphatic ‘No’ to any foreign intervention.
Although Wilson maintained a neutral policy through the election and briefly afterward, his advisors and Cabinet had been lobbying for war and continued to do so even more vehemently after the President’s re-election was secured.
Nearly all of them, including Wilson himself, had deep financial, family, and political ties to J. P. Morgan. Wilson received considerable Morgan financial backing for his two presidential runs.

This post was published at David Stockmans Contra Corner on September 18, 2016.

The Donald Versus Killary: War or Peace?

War: A Warning from the Past Although history does not exactly repeat itself, it does provide parallels and sometimes quite ominous ones. Such is the case with the current U. S. Presidential election and the one which occurred one hundred years earlier.
***
The dominating question which hung over the 1916 campaign was whether the country would remain neutral in regard to the horrific slaughter which was taking place on the European battlefields in probably the greatest act of mass insanity ever recorded, World War I.
President Wilson had maintained that the U. S. would continue a policy of strict neutrality. By all indications, the nation wanted no part of the war, with the President’s own party at his nomination delivering an emphatic ‘No’ to any foreign intervention.
Although Wilson maintained a neutral policy through the election and briefly afterward, his advisors and Cabinet had been lobbying for war and continued to do so even more vehemently after the President’s re-election was secured.
Nearly all of them, including Wilson himself, had deep financial, family, and political ties to J. P. Morgan. Wilson received considerable Morgan financial backing for his two presidential runs.
The Morgan operatives within the Administration were pushing for war because the House of Morgan had ‘invested’ heavily in the ‘Allied’ cause and a defeat or a negotiated settlement with any favorable concessions to Germany would be a catastrophe for Morgan financial interests.

This post was published at Acting-Man on September 18, 2016.

Second Half Rebound – – MIA Again!

Retail sales declined last month for the first time since March and manufacturing production slipped, government data released Thursday showed. Meanwhile, prices businesses receive for their goods and services were unchanged last month, a sign of still-soft demand at home and abroad. Companies also remain cautious about building up too much inventory, new figures showed.
Recent economic gauges, including evidence of a slowdown in August hiring, suggest the economy could be constrained for the rest of the year to a growth rate only slightly above the expansion’s overall 2% pace – the weakest of any since World War II.
Forecasters long expected an acceleration in the economy starting in the summer after nine months of economic growth around a 1% rate. The uptick was expected to deliver firmer wage growth and price gains, and put Federal Reserve policy makers in a position to lift the central bank’s benchmark interest rate by this month.

This post was published at David Stockmans Contra Corner on September 16, 2016.

Don’t Think Armageddon, Think “A Thousand Balls Of Flame… And Then Crickets!”

A whiff of World War III hangs in the air. In the US, Cold War 2.0 is on, and the anti-Russian rhetoric emanating from the Clinton campaign, echoed by the mass media, hearkens back to McCarthyism and the red scare. In response, many people are starting to think that Armageddon might be nigh – an all-out nuclear exchange, followed by nuclear winter and human extinction. It seems that many people in the US like to think that way. Goodness gracious!
But, you know, this is hardly unreasonable of them. The US is spiraling down into financial, economic and political collapse, losing its standing in the world and turning into a continent-sized ghetto full of drug abuse, violence and decaying infrastructure, its population vice-ridden, poisoned with genetically modified food, morbidly obese, exploited by predatory police departments and city halls, plus a wide assortment of rackets, from medicine to education to real estate… That we know.
We also know how painful it is to realize that the US is damaged beyond repair, or to acquiesce to the fact that most of the damage is self-inflicted: the endless, useless wars, the limitless corruption of money politics, the toxic culture and gender wars, and the imperial hubris and willful ignorance that underlies it all… This level of disconnect between the expected and the observed certainly hurts, but the pain can be avoided, for a time, through mass delusion.
This sort of downward spiral does not automatically spell ‘Apocalypse,’ but the specifics of the state cult of the US – an old-time religiosity overlaid with the secular religion of progress – are such that there can be no other options: either we are on our way up to build colonies on Mars, or we perish in a ball of flame. Since the humiliation of having to ask the Russians for permission to fly the Soyuz to the International Space Station makes the prospect of American space colonies seem dubious, it’s Plan B: balls of flame here we come!

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Aug 28, 2016.

Mission Impossible Looms for Renzi’s Italian Growth Target

The odds are stacked against Matteo Renzi’s economic ambitions for Italy.
The prime minister needs to see a blistering pace in the second half of this year to meet his goal of a 1.2 percent expansion in 2016. Economists say that’s not happening, spelling trouble for Renzi and the wider euro area.
With Renzi facing a referendum in the autumn that could decide his political future, a stagnant economy and banks hobbled by bad debt are adding to his challenges. While cheaper oil, a weaker euro and unprecedented European Central Bank stimulus helped the Italian economy emerge last year from its longest recession since World War II, that can only take the recovery so far.
‘Italy’s potential growth rate is, as of today, still zero if not slightly negative,’ said Raffaella Tenconi, a London-based economist at Wood & Co. ‘Companies are still too indebted, profitability in the aggregate is very low and the economy overall is in a particularly challenging position having no fiscal or monetary-policy independence.’
Renzi’s government so far is standing by the 2016 growth projection it made in April, despite an economy that stalled in the three months through June. A constitutional reform referendum expected in November is rapidly turning into a test of the 41-year-old premier’s popularity, with unemployment that unexpectedly rose to 11.6 percent in June and a banking crisis that rattled investors large and small. Renzi has said he would quit if he loses the vote.

This post was published at David Stockmans Contra Corner By Lorenzo Totaro, Bloomberg Business ‘ August 22, 2016.

Barack Obama: From Peace Prize to World’s Biggest Arms Dealer in 8 Short Years – – $190 Billion and Counting

(ANTIMEDIA) On Thursday, the U. S. State Department approved the sale of more military equipment, valued at around $1.15 billion USD, to the oil-rich kingdom of Saudi Arabia. This sounds like a lot of money to most of us, but the most frightening aspect of the sale is that it represents a continuation of an arms-dealing relationship between Washington and the Saudi regime, which has been worth over $50 billion USD in arms sales to date.
It is not an understatement to say Obama’s tears over gun violence are disingenuous considering his administration has enacted a policy of systematically arming the entire world with all manner of warcraft. According to the Department of Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA), during his first six years in office, the Obama administration entered into agreements to sell more than $190 billion USD in weaponry worldwide. As the director of the Arms and Security Project at the Center for International Policy, William D. Hartung, states, this figure is higher than any U. S. administration since World War II. Perhaps that is why the Nobel secretary has voiced serious regrets about awarding the Peace Prize to the president.
While there are a number of companies who are making an absolute killing from these sales – like Lockheed Martin and Boeing – the fact remains that the U. S. government actively facilitates this industry in more ways than one.

This post was published at David Stockmans Contra Corner By Darius Shahtahmasebi via Anti Media ‘ August 18, 2016.

The World is following Japan’s lead at the Worst Possible Time

After its spectacular rise over the 45 years following World War II, Japan’s economy was hailed as a model of how to do things right. But then times changed. Japan shifted from leading the way, to showing the world what notto do. And now, the world is doing it anyway.
The symptoms
From the end of World War II through 1992, Japan’s economy grew at an average of 7.3 percent a year. That’s as impressive as China’s recent economic growth. But since 1992, Japan has been in a decades-long economic slump, with real GDP growth averaging just 0.8 percent a year.
Meanwhile, Japan’s debt load has ballooned. From 1992 to 2015, government debt as a percent of the country’s GDP increased from under 100 percent of GDP, to 229 percent of GDP.
Japan’s prolonged economic slowdown helped bring about an era of deflation. Now its annual inflation rate stands at negative 0.4 percent (a negative inflation rate means there is deflation). This means that, in theory, if you paid 280 yen for a dozen eggs last year, this year they would cost 278 yen. In a deflationary environment, consumers believe prices will be lower in the future – so they delay purchases, waiting for lower prices. This in turn slows economic growth and results in further deflation.
To get people to borrow and spend more, the Bank of Japan started slashing its prime lending rate in 1992. It cut it until the rate reached nearly zero. It’s been there for about 20 years. And recently, Japan’s central bank decided to move to negative interest rates – a financial concept that is flipping the world of finance on its head.
Today, deflation, negative interest rates and horrible demographics are the hallmarks of Japan’s economy. These are all symptoms of what could be called ‘Japanese disease.’
One of the side effects of the disease has been pitiful stock market performance. Japan’s Nikkei 225 index hit a peak of 38,957 in 1989. It is now at 16,620. So 27 years later, the stock market is 57 percent below its all-time peak.

This post was published at David Stockmans Contra Corner By Kim Iskyan, Business Insider ‘ July 28, 2016.

No, Donald, It’s Not A ‘World War’

Actually, the Nice horror was the demented suicide of a wretch who recently got fired, divorced and arrested for road rage, not a planned jihadi terrorist attack.
Beyond that, the real jihadi threat is rooted in blowback, and combatting it is a domestic police function. Enough militatistic bellicosity already!
The inconvenient truth is, Washington and its NATO vassals have brought bombs, drones, occupations and slaughter to towns and villages throughout the greater middle east for upwards of three decades. It is that senseless intervention and aggression that has fueled the rise of vengeful barbarians who operate under the ideological cover of a twisted Sunni jihaddism.
In fact, it was the Bush/Clinton/Obama wars which gave rise first to al-Qaeda and then to ISIS. In very substantial degree Washington trained them, armed them and then incited them to their anti-western rampages.
The Imperial City’s insidious doctrine of ‘regime change’ also destroyed the states of Iraq, Syria, Yemen, Libya and Afghanistan, thereby giving the jihadi vast lawless territories from which to operate and to even establish a murderous medieval caliphate in the desert backwaters of western Iraq and northern Syria..
The frightful violence that has been episodically erupting in France owing to internal cadres and in the US owing to copycats does not originate in the religion of Islam. The latter confession is 1384 years old, but it was only 25 years ago that meaningful jihadi terrorism first impinged on the west.

This post was published at David Stockmans Contra Corner on July 16, 2016.

Generals Strangelove, Breedlove and the Washington Russophobes

The Roman republic began its descent into empire as victorious generals – starting with one Julius Caesar – returned to claim the fruits of their victories, their final conquest being the republic itself. ‘Crossing the Rubicon’ has today become a phrase meaning an event that cannot be undone, usually of ominous portent, and surely this applies to the machinations of one General Philip Breedlove, former Supreme Commander of NATO.
Revealed by hackers who broke into his email accounts, Breedlove’s plot to start World War III with Russia recalls the recklessness of Dr. Strangelove in a movie of the same name – except this isn’t a movie, it’s reality.
Coordinating with sympathetic retired military personnel, such as Wesley Clark, former Secretary of State Colin Powell, and Harlan Ullman, a top official of the Atlantic Council, the idea was – as Ullman put it – to ‘leverage, cajole, convince or coerce the U. S. to react’ to an alleged Russian threat in Europe. Another academic contact, one Phillip Karber, head of the neoconservative Potomac Foundation, was involved in disseminating a crude forgery supposed to have depicted Russian tanks in Ukraine. Naturally, theWashington Free Beacon fell for it, as did Sen. James Inhofe. Confirmation bias is pandemic in these circles.
Breedlove has himself been at the center of similar hoaxes, claiming that tens of thousands of Russian troops are present in Ukraine, armed to the teeth with the latest advanced weaponry: this was an outright lie, as the German intelligence agency, the BND, pointed out.

This post was published at David Stockmans Contra Corner by Justin Raimondo ‘ July 6, 2016.

After ‘Brexit,’ Can We Exit a Few Things Too?

Last week’s UK vote to leave the EU may have come as a shock to many, but the sentiment that led British voters to reject rule from Brussels is nothing unique. In fact it is growing sentiment worldwide. Frustration with politics as usual, with political parties that really do not differ in philosophy, with an economy that serves the one percent at the expense of the rest of society is a growing phenomenon throughout Europe and in the United States as well. The Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump phenomena are but one example of a frustrated public sensing something is very wrong with society and looking for a way out.
What is happening in the UK, in Europe, and in the US, is nothing less than a breakdown of the entire system. The EU was meant to be a customs union where post-World War II Western Europe could rebuild itself through free trade and a reduction in bureaucracy. Through corruption and political ambition it became an unelected bully government in Brussels, where the well-connected were well compensated and insulated from the votes of mere citizens.
Whatever happens in the near future – and it is certainly not assured that the vote to ‘Brexit’ will actually end in the UK’s departure from the EU – a line has been crossed that supporters of more personal liberty should celebrate. Rule from London is preferable to liberty-minded Britons than rule from Brussels. Just as Texans should prefer rule from Austin to rule from Washington. That doesn’t make either option perfect, just more likely to produce more freedom.

This post was published at Ron Paul Institute on monday june 27, 2016.

Obama and the Myth of Hiroshima

On May 27, Barack Obama became the first sitting American president to visit the Hiroshima Peace Memorial, the site of the world’s first atomic bombing. Though highly photogenic, the visit was otherwise one that avoided acknowledging the true history of the place.
Like his official predecessors (Secretary of State John Kerry visited the Peace Memorial in early April, as did two American ambassadors before him), Obama did not address the key issues surrounding the attack. ‘He [Obama] will not revisit the decision to use the atomic bomb,’ Benjamin Rhodes, deputy national security adviser for strategic communications, stated.
With rare exception, the question of whether the atomic bombs were necessary to end World War Two is debated only deep within the safety of academic circles: could a land invasion have been otherwise avoided? Would more diplomacy have achieved the same ends without the destruction of two cities? Could an atomic test on a deserted island have convinced the Japanese? Was the surrender instead driven primarily by the entry of the Soviets into the Pacific War, which, by historical accident, took place two days after Hiroshima – and the day before Nagasaki was immolated?
But it is not only the history of the decision itself that is side stepped. Beyond the acts of destruction lies the myth of the atomic bombings, the postwar creation of a mass memory of things that did not happen.

This post was published at David Stockmans Contra Corner on June 3, 2016.

Memorial Day And The Abolition Of Historical Memory

We might as well get rid of Memorial Day, for all the good it does us. Originally ‘Decoration Day,’ the last Monday in May has been the designated time for us to remember the war dead and honor their sacrifice – while, perhaps, taking in the lessons of the many conflicts that have marked our history as a free nation. In line with the modern trend of universal trivialization, however, the holiday has been paganized to mark the beginning of summer, when we get out the barbecue grill and have the neighbors over for hamburgers and beer. As for contemplating the meaning of the day in the context of our current and recent wars, that is left to those few pundits who pay attention to foreign policy issues, or else to writers of paeans to the ‘Greatest Generation’ – World War II being the only modern war our panegyrists deign to recall, since it is relatively untouched by the ravages of historical revisionism.
Indeed, as far as our wars are concerned, the very concept of historical memory has vanished from the post-9/11 world. It seems the earth was born anew on September 11, 2001, and only ragged remnants of our mystified past – mostly from World War II and the Civil War – survived the purge. In the new version our victories are exaggerated and glorified, while our defeats – e.g. Vietnam, Korea, our nasty little covert wars in Central and South America – are not even mentioned, let alone considered in depth.
The abolition of historical memory is one of the worst aspects of modernity: it is certainly the most depressing. For the modern man, it’s an effort to recall what happened last week, never mind the last century. The news cycle spins madly and ever-faster, and the result is that we are lost in the blur of Now: for all intents and purposes, we are a people without a history, who recall past events – if we remember them at all – as one would summon a vague and confusing dream.

This post was published at David Stockmans Contra Corner by Justin Raimondo ‘ May 30, 2016.

Why George Washington Would Have Agreed With Donald Trump

For all the lamentation about the level of rhetoric in this Trumped-up election year, the race between Donald Trump and all-but-certain Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton is already shaping up to be a debate over America’s global role of the kind we haven’t had for decades, perhaps since the last ‘America First’ movement of the late ’30s. And it is a debate that some foreign-policy experts suggest is long overdue, even if it tends to distress U. S. allies around the world. (‘The unthinkable has come to pass,’ Germany’s Die Welt wrote after Trump became the presumptive GOP nominee this week.)
It is also a debate that, were they still around to witness it, a majority of past U. S. presidents going back to George Washington would probably welcome – and most of them, believe it or not, might well take Trump’s side.
In his big foreign-policy rollout speech last week, Trump declared it was time ‘to shake the rust off of America’s foreign policy’ and drop American pretensions about remaking the world in our image any longer. Or as he put it, in an obvious reference to the failed invasion of Iraq and intervention in Libya, America should abandon the ‘dangerous idea that we could make Western democracies out of countries that had no experience or interest in becoming a Western democracy.’ Brazenly calling his agenda ‘America First’ – never mind that was the name of the notorious pre-World War II isolationist movement – he also directly challenged the 70 years of bipartisan consensus over the post-World War II global order that America created. He suggested that the world needs America far more than the other way around, and he effectively warned U. S. allies that without a new global deal that demands a kind of tribute paid to Washington for its defense umbrella – he wants them to ‘prove’ they are our friends, he says – he’d walk away from the world’s trade table, so to speak.

This post was published at David Stockmans Contra Corner on May 9, 2016.