How about some apologies now from the OPCW, the UN, and chiefly the US and its NATO allies for completely unwarranted missile attacks (unsuccessful as they were) on Syrian targets for no valid reason. And more than that, to clear up for ever that the so-called chemical weapon attack was a Washington inspired and provisioned story, entirely untruthful, to discredit the legitimate government and president of Syria.
This is typical of the dirty, underhand, undermining of the truth in which Washington continually indulges to influence world events across many spheres, creating an atmosphere of fear and suppression in organisations that should know and act better and on a higher level of ethics and accountability than this.
Can anyone be trusted to deal only in the truth in the 21st century?
America’s sick and weakened mind needs righting. I’m personally not sure that is possible, but if it is possible and there is actually a cure for that sickness then Jim Kunstler thinks he has it. I can’t fault his logic but I think things have already gone a little too far for any cure to be effective.
Nevertheless, I can’t wait for the Durham & Barr surgical team to begin the process of cutting through the most badly decayed parts of the US mind in a vain attempt to restore it.
You think modern Western society is doing alright? You think the society you live in is decent, fair, open, honest, safe, not unbalanced? And perhaps most of all that it can be sustained to carry on like it is for much longer?
Then open your eyes. Ask yourself what those who protect your society, the police and emergency services, spend most of their time doing. I can tell you it is not policing real criminal activity. It is in sorting out problems occurring in your local households, your neighbours, perhaps even your own, centred around either family violence or mental health issues. Let me also tell you, they do a great job, in impossibly difficult circumstances, trying to, in fact obliged to uphold unequivocal laws – laws without feeling or empathy – in as humane a way as they are allowed to do.
This story is about family violence but I suggest that with at least 1 in 3 Australians suffering from some form of mental health problem – and I expect this is similarly found anywhere in the West – this is just as time consuming and enveloping as the domestic violence issue.
And who is to blame? The perpetrator? The victim? The troubled depressed person, schizophrenic or whatever? Perhaps. There have always been flaws in humanity. But I suggest the principal cause is the deliberately manufactured complexity of living in an unfair society where it is never possible for the great majority to live a comfortable life while conforming to the expectation to do just that. For most, that means accepting a life controlled by some form of meds as a coping mechanism. Is it any wonder that society is breaking down? Breaking up? Any which way you look at it, breaking it is.
On top of all that, we are coming up to the most dangerous time of the year for family disturbance issues to surface – what is laughingly known as ‘the holiday season’, ‘the festive season’, Christmas and New Year.
Festive? A holiday? It is going to be far from that for many people, and many are going to suffer lasting hurt and disruption to their lives as a result.
Around the corner is 2020. A ‘happy new year’? Hah! I have little doubt that not just families but society itself will not survive intact, wholly or partially, for the next 12 months.
Then we will learn just how hard breaking up is hard to do.
Let me just say, as someone who has direct experience of family breakup and troubled relatives, the police and ambulance services (the fire and rescue services too I’m sure, though I fortunately have no direct experience of that), and the family courts of course, where involved, in most cases do a marvellous job of sorting out family issues, at least in my home state of Victoria, within the scope of actions they are constrained to uphold. Their efforts are appreciated and I cannot imagine what effect the tasks they are called on to do has on their beings or how they are able to generally most calmly carry out their duties.
Ukraine President Zelensky, a bit slow it seems (needs things repeated), out of his depth and living in a dreamworld, hopes no-one will notice that the constitutional amendments he has submitted to the Ukraine parliament are not the ones, not even close to the ones, he has agreed to implement recently in Paris.
Denis Pushilin, head of the DPR explains the position as reported in this TASS article, and summarises: “We have said many times – but if the Ukrainian president is so slow, we will repeat once again – that Kiev will not get control over the border between the republics and Russia. As long as Ukraine does not drop attempts to evade its commitments, there will be no constructive solution to the conflict,” Pushilin said.
That all seems clear enough to me, but then I haven’t gotten myself into a precarious and untenable position of having responsibility for a nation’s future without due consideration as to how I am going to deal with the strong and radical nationalistic elements in my country and to satisfy the powerbrokers of the nation that has usurped all our real power and impoverished us in the process, both of which are opposed to what I have deceptively undertaken to do when I met the leaders of other much more influential nations than mine. Nor have I underestimated the will and determination of the leaders and people of certain alienated regions of my country to retain their new-found independence from my government at all costs. I am not that shortsighted or stupid as to have placed myself in that position. Of course, it has to be said, I have not also been presented with opportunities on that scale, but I would like to think that I would not have made such unwise choices. Zelensky has.
Ukraine, as we know it, which is not at all as it used to be, is finished one way or another. There is hope for an independent Donbass though. They have chosen wisely.
I will say one thing about Australia’s ABC News, we do get some interesting stories from them, it’s not all about politicians and the global economic mess – although I suppose it is in a way.
One thing is clear, we should stop lying to our children about science. We know today that the world is actually very different from that espoused by Newtonian physics. So why continue with the lies?
If I can understand quantum physics – though not necessarily being able to explain it to others in great detail – such is not necessary to a personal understanding anyway – then any child with a command and understanding of language and a basic grounding in what is real, rather than what is imagined, should also be fully capable of doing so.
While we are on the subject, there are a great many other things we should stop lying to our children about. For instance: Christmas; a fictional figure called Santa Claus who in the course of a single night visits every child’s bedroom, alone, while they and their parents are asleep – incredibly flying not only in the face of reality but in contravention of every paedophilic law everywhere; flying reindeer; Easter bunnies; and perhaps most of all – some man who never claimed to be a ‘god’ but didn’t dissuade others from thinking that he was/is, and who was – if we are being realistic – never in a million years born from a normal woman who through some mysterious non-sexual intercourse with a sort of weird invisible spirit thingy which was therefore incapable of interacting on the physical plain with any person whatsoever or in any way, became pregnant and gave birth to a normal physical child. What sort of fantastic but totally fictitious story are any of those things to lay on the innocent and malleable young minds of future generations of adult humans.
I am sure there are other equally fantastic stories told to children in all other cultures.
No wonder the world is in such a mess.
I am, of course, in case you were thinking otherwise, just as guilty of this as everybody else. It is a societal thing. A thing, along with many others, that will hopefully die out with the imminent demise of our current weird societies the world over. I will say this in my defence – the years have taught me that this practice of lying to children is wrong, totally wrong, and I now refuse to take part in any of it – even if that means not joining in family or communal celebrations.
I just hope we, or whoever is left, can remember Einstein’s work. That would be worth saving, and would save a lot of long-term development wading through the cluttered minefields of grey-area thought and dead-end philosophies that we ourselves struggled with.
Always assuming there is to be the opportunity for such a new beginning.
“Assange’s father hopeful of son’s release” – The Advocate – which, being Tasmanian, will probably be the last Australian news source still operating in the climate ravaged world of a decade or so ahead, if there are any at all.
“He’s one of the world’s great journalists and he’s an Australian. He’s one of us to claim, to protect.” – Mr Shipton.
And yes, I too am hopeful that the corrupt US government will not have its way with ‘our’ Julian. To me he has always been a hero. His only ‘crime’, if that is a just description, is to have caused embarrassment to America. Heck, I do that almost every day, just on a different scale. Julian’s work is recognised globally.
“What will happen if Julian is dragged away in a yellow jumpsuit with chains around him is the prestige of every journalist in the western world will fall to zero.”
True. It can not be allowed to happen. And the Australian government and especially the UK government will live in infamy if it does. The US government is of course so far beyond redemption as to be cast from any such thoughts.
The world has gone completely mad when a mob of 500 lawyers (can you imagine that?) assaults and ransacks a hospital over some issue. I guess it doesn’t matter what the issue is, just the idea of mobs of lawyers running riot around the place simply boggles the mind. It couldn’t happen in a sane world, could it? Well, it has, in Pakistan. Unbelievable. What hope is there left for us?
Although, I suppose, in a sane world there wouldn’t be any lawyers – but that is beside the point.
The point being that the world has gone completely mad. Where does that lead us? Wherever that is, it is not going to be a good place.
OK, this is not the first time that lawyers have clashed with police. In November it happened in Delhi, but this time the Pakistani lawyers are being charged under terrorism laws.
How can society retain any semblance of cohesion when lawyers take to the streets? Oh, I just remembered, we are on the threshold of 2020. That’s when, as I understand it, we are set to lose all forms of social cohesion.
And, just to remind you, these two nations – Pakistan and India – are two of the eight or possibly nine nations around the world that possess nuclear weapons. Socially incohesive nations with rioting lawyers and nuclear weapons – there’s a thought to keep you awake at night.
A very busy and impressively important person, and adept representative of Russia’s interests abroad is Foreign Minister, Sergey Viktorovich Lavrov (I think in this article is the first time I have seen his full name used). He is Russia’s ‘everywhere man’. And not every FM gets to talk with presidents as he does.
No less hard working, though I suggest with far less air miles, is the stalwart and equally impressive Foreign Ministry Spokesperson, Maria Zakharova, who in this TASS article reports on the high level talks her boss undertook recently in the US.
Perhaps more of general interest, to me at least, are her remarks on the changing stance of the Ukraine government of Kiev in the recent Normandy Four ‘discussions’ (can’t call them anything more than that) in Paris. I actually disagree with her official assessment, if I understand it correctly, though I think it very astute of Russia to notice and to point out that apparent Kiev change – letting others know they are aware of it.
For my money I don’t think there has been any real change in stance by the Kiev government, neither for Zelensky nor his predecessor Poroshenko. They have just, perhaps from the beginning of the Minsk agreements saga, cleverly obscured or in fact failed to clearly define their position on all the implications surrounding the Donbass situation, presumably relying on the US cavalry to save the day for them. A forlorn hope, given that the US has largely washed its hands of Ukraine, having already wrung it dry from the extraction of everything they wanted. Now, close to crunch time, Kiev’s true position has begun to be expressed yet, so far, not very forcefully. Eventually, and I suggest this will be before the next scheduled meeting in March 2020, a stand-off of insurmountable demands will be made by the Kiev side or perhaps, realising that their hoped for outcome is an impossible one, they will withdraw from the process altogether. This is in line with what I have said previously – the Minsk process has all along, though perhaps not so obviously as is now emerging, been dead in the water, designed to fail.
That Ukraine attempts to paint a picture internally that is different from all other parties understanding of the situation, following this summit, I think gives the lie to their intentions. The Kiev government knows full well they will never be able to sell the reality of the case to those who internally oppose it with distorted other views. See also: “Kiev caught trying to dupe Donbass, Normandy Quartet and failed, says Russian senator”
Nevertheless, the show must go on. Though it doesn’t contain many laughs for the comedy it is turning out to be.
Well, here it is. A few minutes ago I captured, as closely as I could, the Worldometers’ population clock tick over to the count of seven and three quarter billion humans alive on the planet Earth.
Yes, I know that births and deaths don’t work like a clock, but some time around now is when that milestone is reached. It is only 12 December and, at a rate of increase of 1 million every 4-5 days, there is likely to be a further 4 million or so added to the Net Population Growth of almost 77 million by the end of the year, bringing our annual net increase to around 81 million – as it has been averaging for so many years now.
They, the authorities, tell us that the rate of population increase is steadily, if only gradually, decreasing. And while that is true, it is quite irrelevant to the real picture. Since 1980 – the last 40 years – the actual population increase every year has been around or well above 80 million. That is a 40 year trend, and even if the growth rate does diminish slowly, the actual increase is likely to remain at that figure for many years to come (I will add my usual ‘barring accidents’ rider to that, since a huge growth in the death rate cannot be ruled out from now on, resulting in massive population decline – which is entirely out of scope for anyone’s ability to plan for the future).
Let’s put this into perspective. At something like 81 million annual growth, 1 billion extra people will be trying to share Earth’s produce and resources every 12 years and 4 months (approximately). And we are set to reach the 8th billion milestone almost exactly 3 years from now – give or take a week or two. That is around the end of 2022.
If that trend continues for another 40 years or so, we will be well on our way to a 12 billion population level by 2070. Of course that again is subject to the ‘barring accidents’ rider. They don’t tend to mention these things in the official estimates. The only way that we could get to that point still with only around 10 billion, as they suggest, is for over 2 billion extra deaths over and above normal levels throughout those years. Only a fool would suggest that births are going to decrease sufficient to bring that about, if they actually decrease at all. Of course there are a great many ways that many more than 2 billion extra deaths could be on the cards for humanity. Some of the main ones I mention below.
I will simply say, perhaps just to remind you, that this (net population growth) is one of the factors that is driving climate change, the level of unrest in nations all over the Earth, and the instability of global economies and social systems. All of those things, separately or together, are fully capable of ensuring soaring death rates for even the now most stable of human cultures.
This quote was part of an interview of President Assad by the Italian TV channel RAI in November 2019, the full text of which is contained in the shared SANA article. RAI has, for some undisclosed reason, chosen not to put the interview to air, according to the article – although that may have changed 1 day ago, and if you perform an internet search for ‘RAI Assad interview’ you will find all sorts of distortions and mischief arising from all the usual sources of such, taken from what he has said. Nothing changes. How could we think otherwise. .
I have read the whole transcript and to my mind there is nothing untoward that any rational person would object to in it. In fact Dr Assad is his usual pragmatic, charming, self, explaining the situation and answering all the questions succinctly and clearly.
There is one point made that could possibly upset Europeans generally. When asked about the refugee situation in Europe, part of his answer was –
“Europe was the main player in creating chaos in Syria. So, what goes around comes around.”
That may appear to be harsh, but it is true. Europe, including Britain, has always been the main cause of chaos in the Middle East generally. There is no escaping that fact. Italians should be aware of that as much as any other European nation. The Americans are a relative newcomer to that game – the game of causing chaos, that is.
One other point I can make, is this. When asked about the ‘killing of civilians’ so often talked about in the media, part of his brilliant response was –
“We couldn’t withstand this war for nine years without the public support and you cannot have public support while you’re killing civilians. This is an equation, this is a self-evident equation, nobody can refute it.”
Point taken. The media simply has it all wrong – for whatever reason. The main reasons for that, I suggest, are that they readily accept what they hear and do not feel it necessary to validate their sources, or they simply make stuff up to fill their chosen narrative. Or both.
It is a crying shame that this previously prosperous country should have been almost, not entirely, brought to its knees by the interference of the despicable external influences of other nations. If those same nations now do not wish to hear of their earlier and in some cases continuing indiscretions, then they should have thought a little harder about the decisions they made. They will have to live with that, if they have a conscience at all, and also they must deal with any fallout of their acts – which includes having them referenced and called out by those they have offended against.
Long live Syria. May she soon regain the prosperity she once enjoyed.