Russophobia Goes Comic 1024


I am feeling particularly hostile to Donald Trump after his incendiary move on Jerusalem. But it remains the case that I have enough direct knowledge of events to be aware that the entire premise of the Russophobic “election-hacking” conspiracy theory is simple nonsense. I am therefore most amused that my friend Randy Credico, who stayed with Nadira and I in Edinburgh a few months ago, has now been subpoenaed by the Senate Inquiry on Russian meddling as the alleged go-between for Roger Stone and Julian Assange, on the brilliant grounds that he knows both of them.

I can tell you from certain knowledge this is absolute nonsense. While Randy is a delightful person who hides a shrewd political mind behind a deliberate crackpot façade, he is the most indiscreet person in the world. He is not anybody’s conveyor of secrets, he would tell it all impulsively on his next radio show! Where Russia fits into this mad conspiracy theory I have no idea. If I had any belief that it was the genuine intention of Senate or Special Counsel inquiries to discover the actual truth, I would be surprised they have never made any contact with me, as opposed to my fleeting houseguests. But as I am well aware the last thing they want to know is the truth, I am not surprised in the least.

On a personal note I have just emerged from a really harrowing period. I had to leave the High Court a month ago straight to Heathrow and fly out to Ghana. Here I have been battling for the last year to save Atholl Energy, a company I chair which had some US $50 million worth of debts. The reason for this was that it had built an extension to the power station it originally constructed for the Ghanaian government, and the Ghanaian government had failed to pay for the extension after Atholl pre-financed it. In line with company philosophy, Atholl had both completed and handed over the extension, despite the non-payment, as the aim is to supply power to the people of Ghana.

The massive debt of course threatened Atholl with going bust. That would mean redundancy for our staff, and potentially many scores of redundancies at local sub-contractors we had been unable to pay in full. The thought of inflicting that mass misery on families, many of whom I know, has stopped me sleeping for months.

The current government of Ghana took over in January and inherited a huge fiscal deficit due to – and there is no other way of saying it – wholesale looting by the last government on a scale which Ghana had never witnessed before. To give an example from our own sector, we install power plant using Siemens equipment at about 1.2 million dollars per MW for a turnkey plant including fuel supply and power evacuation infrastructure. The last government of Ghana were contracting large projects at three times the unit cost or more, using inferior equipment. For $150 million per project to be added corruptly was not unusual.

On top of this, despite having imposed some of the world’s highest electricity tariffs – higher than British tariffs, for example – the revenue collected was mysteriously vanishing. As a result, our $52 million owed was part of a US$2.5 billion energy sector debt the current government inherited.

In effect this has been rescheduled, by the launch of bonds to raise the money to pay off the debts. The bonds are serviced by a levy on petrol and diesel. As usual in Africa, the IMF and World Bank were extremely unhelpful, refusing to sanction a government guarantee on the bonds, which means the energy levy is now to be collected by a new corporate structure and the bond is a corporate one. This structure necessitated an increase in the bond interest rate to 19.5%, which will benefit the financial institutions who have bought them, to the detriment of the Ghanaian public. In my experience every IMF and World Bank policy intervention in Africa always, on analysis, benefits corporations to the disbenefit of the African public.

It is also a gross double standard – if the energy debt had been treated as government debt, Ghana’s “unacceptable” debt to GDP ratio would still have been substantially less that that of many developed countries, including the UK.

The government of Ghana is to be congratulated on its persistence and the brilliance of its financial engineering that enabled it to tackle a huge problem despite obstruction rather than help from the international agencies – the energy sector debt had been threatening to crash the Ghanaian Banking sector, to the benefit of the large international banks.

For our company, we had to take a haircut because the payment was made not in the cash dollars which were owed, but in a mixture of bonds and local currency. We owed banks and suppliers in dollars, so we have been structuring sales and taken the odd hit on discounting. But we have got through it, and as of yesterday have paid off all our creditors in full. There is not a single job loss caused by us, either in our company or at our suppliers and sub-contractors, and that has removed a fear which has been haunting me. I cannot express how tough this period has been – I did not receive a single penny from my major source of income for nearly four years, and as of this morning still haven’t. I am not going to be a millionaire, but I am now going to be OK.

2017 has personally been really difficult. But I can now look forward to the New Year with lightened shoulders, and pick up the rest of my life again.

I am truly sorry that for the last few months speaking invitations and book orders have gone by the wall. I have 21,253 unopened emails!! Not to mention over 5,000 donors to my legal defence fund I have not thanked yet. I promise I shall be less elusive in future.


1,024 thoughts on “Russophobia Goes Comic

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  • Macky

    Apparently new CIA declassified documents prove the Americans had fingers in the Chechen wars with the aim to break Russia into 40 small controllable countries, but I’ve not seen them yet; however OffGuardian has this piece on the newly declassified files;

    https://off-guardian.org/2017/12/15/newly-declassified-documents-show-gorbachev-was-told-nato-wouldnt-expand-eastward/

    Amazing that the Russians took the West at their word on this, and especially after this on Libya.

    • John Goss

      Thanks for the Off-Guardian article Macky. I had not realised it was saying pretty much the same as the one I posted below both picking up on the professionalism of Putin at a press conference which went on for I think almost four hours. The western media was there and he took on issues like Ukraine, drugs in sport and Crimea. The trouble is western reporters are hard-pressed to deal with honest answers and are so spoon-fed in their questioning techniques they would not know how to phrase a question because the actions of western politicians would come back and bite them. They could hardly ask searching questions with the record of the west.

      • Macky

        @John, no problem as I didn’t even see that Silvio had posted this story on the previous page.

        The only leaders I can think of capable of doing marathon, completely opened, mastery of all topics, Putin-like Press conferences, were Castro & Chavez, which brings the implication that perhaps what differentiates them from Western Leaders, is that most Western politicians are venal short-term careerists, entering politics to further/enrich themselves, as a first & foremost consideration.

  • John Goss

    Russophobia might go comic occasionally but it is a very serious issue since Russia cannot be held responsible for it, Russia since the dissolution of the Soviet Union has been wilfully targeted byt the dishonourable west. I am ashamed that the west is so dishonourable as I am part of it and that brings dishonour to my good name. Putin, while pointing out how NATO has flagrantly breached its agreements and shown how untrustworthy are agreements from political brokers on behalf of the west, is not frightened to tell it as it is. The sad thing with flippant presidents like Donald Trump and other hothead leaders like Kim Jong Un the Russian President looks like he is one of the few people still operating within the bounds of diplomatic leadership and honour.

    http://russia-insider.com/en/newly-declassified-documents-gorbachev-was-promised-numerous-times-nato-wouldnt-move-past-east

    • Tony_0pmoc

      John Goss,

      “I am ashamed that the west is so dishonourable as I am part of it and that brings dishonour to my good name.”

      I feel the same, and the more I find out the more disgusted and ashamed I am. Maybe its always, been like this, and I was simply too naive, or working too hard bringing up a family, to realise what was going on.

      But from my perception, thoughout most of my life, at least until 1999, when the UK was bombing Yugoslavia, I thought the vast majority of our politicians, the elite, the military, and the media had some integrity.

      Now, I realise that the vast majority of them have none, and most of them are totally incompetent if not completely evil. Both my Kids had sussed them out long before me and said “Dad, Please don’t vote for them”

      Tony

      • John Goss

        Tony

        “Maybe its always, been like this, and I was simply too naive, or working too hard bringing up a family, to realise what was going on.”

        I am sure many people for one reason or another think like that. It is only this century that I have started wondering how long the elite have been controlling us. In one way the internet has brought this out into the open. Today however accounts on social media are being closed down at a phenomenal rate to prohibit the likes of Eva Bartlett getting the truth out. To my mind it has to be the spooks to blame, CIA, MI5 & 6, Special Branch, Mossad and so on.

    • Aidworker1

      This is absolutely shocking but I suppose reasonably common under the occupation.

      I’m very glad all those people have the courage to film this.

  • Tony_0pmoc

    According to the news reports today, (across all the media) a 70 year old man, was walking down the street in Harringey, North London, near his home on September 17th and spontaneously burst into flames. Neither the public who tried to put the flames out, nor the police, nor the fire brigade who eventually put the flames out, could find any reason why he spontaneously burst into flames. There was no evidence of any “accelerant”. He was however “taken to a specialist hospital by air ambulance but died of severe burns, with an inquest due to open in March.”

    So I did a google search of local North London newspaper reports for around September 17th, with regards to this event and have so far found absolutely nothing.

    I am not suggesting it didn’t happen. I wasn’t there – but loads of people were. How come its just been reported, and where exactly did the helicopter land?

    Or did someone – just make the entire story up?

    I obviously can’t suggest that because of his grieving friends and relatives, and they would be very upset. I am just wondering why they didn’t say anything at time. Maybe its on Facebook, and the local journos thought – its of no major interest. We won’t bother reporting that at the moment.

    “He was a well-liked member of the community and none of our enquiries so far have indicated that he had been involved in a dispute of any sort.”

    “Nor does any account given by witnesses suggest that he had been in contact with another person at the time of the fire.”

    RIP

    I am suggesting its not entirely true, but it wouldn’t surprise me.

    Tony

      • Tony_0pmoc

        JOML,

        He has gone to Screwfix now. He ordered the bit online 10 minutes ago, and they replied come and pick it up now. It’s ready – we don’t shut till 10 pm.. and we will stay open for you.

        cue a photo of Theresa May at Screwfix, and they all look bored sh1tless, but I won’t post that cos they are still open…

        I will do the official one

        https://screwfixmedia.co.uk/rt-hon-theresa-may-mp-visits-new-maidenhead-screwfix-store/

        I used to work night shifts too. There is one big advantage of them, you don’t have some blithering idiot telling you what to do.

        If it needs fixing – you work through the night, and are quiet about it.

        By the morning its working, and you didn’t even know there was a problem.

        Tony

  • Tony_0pmoc

    “Russophobia Goes Comic” – just to stay on topic

    Despite the fact that I fundamentally disagree with him about some scientific and economic things, and when I wrote what I thought on his blog (once)..after reading it for over a year (and I was sober at the time) and he banned me instantly and permanently after my one post….

    My Christmas Present to my self is his book “Everything Is Going To Plan”

    It never stopped me reading his blog, except when he wanted me to pay for it (he has now changed it – so you can read Tuesday for Free)

    Sometimes, I read an article on his blog on Wednesday Morning – and I just go “Wow”

    He is such a brilliant writer – not quite so good in a TV debate – but he does that pretty well too for a Russian in perfect English(US)

    I can’t give him “Book of the Year”, yet, cos I haven’t read it yet…But I will before the End of The Year – and then I will decide…I think The Saker got it last year (He’s a bit Russian too)

    http://cluborlov.blogspot.co.uk/2017/09/everything-is-going-according-to.html

    Dmitry Orlov

    Tony

  • Trowbridge H. Ford

    Perhaps Piutin is telling the truth about there being no collusion between Russia and Trump: all he had to do to make it look true about Hillary is for him to ask the Russian President for all those emails about her in rants about her crminalty with the US electorate.

    • Sharp Ears

      That is shocking. Israel is building up to war on Gaza again. Their provocation is intense.

      Nobody on here has even commented.

      • Macky

        Yes, it looks ominous, especially when you remember that the last two mass killing sprees occurred during the “Season of Goodwill”; Israel seems to like to also cause as much symbolic offense possible when committing crimes against humanity.

        Maybe Craig will comment in passing when he wishes us a Merry X-Mas.

  • Aidworker1

    To shoot someone in a wheelchair is for me a new low.

    People – have no worries at all in hiding your local supermarket Israeli produce.

    I’ve done this twice in the past month!

    With BDS each of individually can make a difference!

  • David McRobie

    Blog if you must.. but I think you deserve a real break now. We will be busy soon enough..
    Merry Christmas to you and yours.

  • Republicofscotland

    As we enter the tenth day of violence and unrest, the Palestinian man shot dead in his wheelchair, originally lost his legs during a Israeli bombing raid.

    The IDF sprayed live rounds into the crowds, which killed three other protesters, on finding out a man in a wheelchair had died from Israeli live fire a IDF spokesperson claimed he was shot, because they thought he was wearing a suicide belt.

    • Republicofscotland

      I should add that China has given its backing, that East Jerusalem should be the capital of Palestine, based on pre-1967 borders.

      The ball is rolling.

      • Sharp Ears

        Cameron has lined up a nice job for himself.

        ‘Former PM takes on UK-China investment role

        As prime minister, David Cameron said the UK and China were in a “golden era” of trade relations
        David Cameron is to take on a new role leading a UK government-backed investment initiative between Britain and China.

        The former prime minister will take charge of a £750m ($1bn) fund to improve ports, roads and rail networks between China and its trading partners.

        The government said working with China’s Belt and Road Initiative would create jobs and boost trade links.

        It comes after Chancellor Philip Hammond’s two-day trip to China.

        The Belt and Road Initiative was first unveiled in 2013, but this year China’s President Xi Jinping pledged £96bn ($124bn) for the scheme.’
        http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-42377177

        The Chinese government said it would invest tens of billions of dollars as part of an ambitious economic plan to rebuild ports, roads and rail networks linking China and its trading partners.

        For Blair, now read Cameron.

        • Sharp Ears

          One of Cameron’s best mates in the housebuilding game has resigned.

          Persimmon chairman quits in row over bonus scheme
          December 16 2017
          Critics said the performance of the housebuilder’s shares was fuelled by the government’s Help to Buy scheme

          The chairman of one of Britain’s biggest housebuilders has resigned over his role in creating one of the largest executive pay schemes in corporate history that will pay its chief executive more than £100 million.

          Nicholas Wrigley is leaving Persimmon, alongside Jonathan Davie, head of the company’s remuneration committee, after they recognised that they should have capped executives’ payouts in a scheme that has been described as “obscene” by MPs.Persimmon is one of Britain’s biggest housebuilders, erecting about 15,000 new homes a year in more than 350 locations. It was named after a horse that won the 1896 Derby and St Leger for the Prince of Wales.

          Mr Wrigley, a former banker, said that he regretted not capping the bonus scheme and was leaving…
          https://www.thetimes.co.uk/edition/business/persimmon-chairman-quits-in-row-over-bonus-scheme-rjzbkbz5q

          Do these types know anything of job centres, rough sleeping, food banks and universal credit? Probably not.

        • Republicofscotland

          Interesting Sharp Ears, as Westminster sends out its envoys, Cameron being one to “seek out” trade deals, as the reality of Brexit looms large.

          Of course I fail to see how Joe Bloggs and his family will benefit from theses deals, I’d imagine they will be aimed more at Cameron’s coroprate buddies, who funded him as PM, and corpo-politicans as a whole.

          China, is investing all over the globe in Africa, and building roads in Pakistan among other projects, it really is a global player to be reckoned with.

          Executive pay rises and bonuses, hit there zenith in the banking industry, Brown and Darling turned a blind eye, the excuse from their banking buddies was, if you want to attract the very best into the industry, we need the very best terms and conditions for them.

          The 2008 crash is of course history now. However paying outrageous salaries and bonuses (even to oneself) are seen as justified, as wages stagnate year after year, but the cost of living keeps on rising.

  • Republicofscotland

    So it looks as though the Great Satan’s game of incitement with North Korea will continue.

    A few days back US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, made a very public appeal to NK to get round a table and talk.

    Now Tillerson is saying that NK, “must earn its way back.”

    This Janus faced U-turn by Tillerson, led to ugly scenes at the UN on Friday as a war of words broke out between Tillerson and a NK delegate.

    The heart of the matter, centres around NK (in my opinion rightly) developing nuclear weapons to protect itself from the Great Satan, and its eager minion Japan.

    Tillerson I suppose is hoping that NK, makes a very loud and public threat, in such a manner that justifies a intervention. However such a intervention would need the approval of China, which would probably be reluctant to give it, as it see’s NK as ally and more importantly a buffer-zone between China and the US forces.

  • Republicofscotland

    The corporate giants that pull Trump’s strings, are slowly but surely eroding Obama’s agreement with Iran, which saw Iran come surging back into the economic fold.

    However the French oil giant Total, expects the US to enact more sanctions against Iran, to appease Israel and Saudi Arabia, they do not want a strong, and prosperous Iran.

    Of course with sanctions comes openings for the competition, in this case China’s largest energy giant CNPC is set to take over from Total in Iran, which has one of the largest gasfields in the world. CNPC and Total, which will still hold an interest will extract two-billion cubic feet of Iranian gas per day.

    Meanwhile China is reportedly on the verge of trading oil in the Yuan, one stumbling block however is convincing Saudi Arabia to follow suit, the change would be a devastating blow to the petrodollar, as undoubtedly other nations would follow Saudi Arabia’s lead.

  • BrianFujisan

    Ros

    I will Never Call this evil ZIONIST By first name haley or somthing,,,, My Umbridge The ICC..UN..Fucking Spinless Bastards..And DON’ T EVER TALK to me about weaponised words

    • Republicofscotland

      Brian.

      Sounds like you could be doing with a wee bit O’fresh air, the winds in your face and the grass under your feet, head for the hills O’Scotland.

      Re one of your earlier comments on delicious Scottish fayre, many years ago over the course of a glorious summer, I helped a friend out working on his creel boat at Mallaig.

      His main income came from lobsters and velvet crabs, though we caught many other species who got caught up in the creels and lines, we dined liked kings on a bounty from Poseidon’s realm that summer.

      • AS

        Sanders (who would have been my candidate) backed Clinton in the election. As did Chomsky. Going to label them Clintonites too?
        On the other hand, Murray lauded Trump’s victory (sorry: Clinton’s loss) and we know now that Assange/WikiLeaks were trying to coordinate with the Trump campaign.

        Facts are troublesome here, obviously.

        • Macky

          ” we know now that Assange/WikiLeaks were trying to coordinate with the Trump campaign..”

          At least you now have the sense to drop the RussiaGate nonsense, but you persist with your campaign against Wikileaks; even if your “facts” were correct, (they’re not, see below), you must of missed the recent UK tribunal ruling that Wikileakes is a “media organisation”, so can be as partisan as it likes, just like all the other media organisations.

          https://medium.com/@caityjohnstone/the-washington-post-also-misreported-cnns-false-wikileaks-story-5c3f38365f05

          • AS

            Of course it can be as partisan as it likes. Assange can be whatever political shade he wishes to be. Who ever said otherwise? However many people supported WikiLeaks as something else other than an alt-right media outlet.

            As for the Greenwald story reported by your favourite reporter, you’re wrong, my ‘facts’ are still correct. Greenwald challenges (correctly) a CNN spin on an email from WikiLeaks, a spin based on attribution of a wrong date to an email, not the DMs (Twitter direct messages) from WikiLeaks to Trump Junior, something to my knowledge Greenwald has so far avoided addressing. I suggest you use better sources.

          • Macky

            ” a spin based on attribution of a wrong date to an email”

            Rather, a bit more than that ! 😀

            “rather than offering some sort of special access to Trump, “Michael J. Erickson” was simply some random person from the public encouraging the Trump family to look at the publicly available DNC emails that WikiLeaks — as everyone by then already knew — had publicly promoted. In other words, the email was the exact opposite of what CNN presented it as being”

            “something to my knowledge Greenwald has so far avoided addressing.”

            You obviously didn’t read the Greenwald piece, as he links directly to the Wikilieaks release of these emails; something that you wouldn’t expect them to do if they are as damning as you make out they are.

            Have you read them ?

            https://twitter.com/wikileaks/status/775823293781794816

          • AS

            Yes I read it. I’ve just double checked and he makes no mention of the leaked DMs published by the Atlantic and, more importantly, what these leaked WikiLeak messages to the Trump campaign tell us about what was going on. He’s clearly avoiding the issue, like most of Assange’s other remaining close allies. The person who took most issue with Assange for attempting to coordinate with the Trump campaign, Barrett Brown, actually went to prison for assisting in the leak of documents via WikiLeaks and is an active contributor to the Intercept. I have no ‘campaign’ against WikiLeaks. I firmily believe Assange himself (or the WikiLeaks Twitter feed) has systematically eroded its credibility over the last year with a series of weird interventions (including during the EU campaign) that indicate an alt-right preference. If you’re not yourself of an ‘alt-right preference’ maybe you should pay a bit closer attention. ‘Russiagate’ is marginal to this, yes. I simply find it preposterous to imagine that Russia doesn’t engage in the same kind of tactics as the US and the UK when it comes to interfering in elections and political processes in other countries. So no, I wouldn’t rule out some kind of manipulation. But yes, I expect evidence, not media brainwashing. Greenwald doesn’t really address the possibility that Russia could have been involved. He addresses ‘blown-up hysteria’ and the wild assumption that links have already been proven when they haven’t.

          • Macky

            ” I firmily believe Assange himself (or the WikiLeaks Twitter feed) has systematically eroded its credibility over the last year ”

            Belief without evidence is blind faith, and I suspect in your case, bad faith.

          • AS

            The evidence is there in the DMs trying to coordinate a pretend ‘leak’ of Trump’s tax returns on the WikiLeaks site as a way of deflecting criticism of WikiLeaks being partisan – to benefit the Trump campaign, as explicitly stated in the DM.

            You’re accusing me of bad faith on absolutely no evidence. Yet at the same time you began by defending the idea that WikiLeaks can indeed be partisan. I responded that it could, but many people had assumed it wasn’t when they gave their support.

            If you’re going to drift into ad hominems and more accusations of ‘bad faith,’ let me know.

          • Macky

            “You’re accusing me of bad faith on absolutely no evidence.”

            You pretend to forget that we had this exact debate before, and I went through all your “points”, but inexplicable my comments were subsequently removed, yet here you are again, arguing the exact same points.

          • AS

            @Macky
            I’d also point out that I’ve gone out of my way to answer your responses, respectfully, while you’ve addressed any of my points but simply engaged in misdirection, ignoring the answer and inventing another fabricated issue.

            First reply: insinuating my negativity to Trump was Clintonite factionalism (ignoring the effects of Trump’s policies in the US).

            Second reply: plucking out of the air the idea that I’d dropped ‘the RussiaGate nonsense’ and insinuating that I have a ‘campaign’ against WikiLeaks (ignoring the fact that people likes Chomsky backed Clinton in the election and the revelations about WIkiLeaks secretly trying to liaise with Trump Junior).

            Third: Confusing emails with DMs (apparently) and ignoring the issue that WikiLeaks was and is now partisan, by your own apparent admission.

            Fourth: A baseless accusation of bad faith and again ignoring the WikiLeaks DMs and the fact that close allies had not known about them and took issue with WikiLeaks attempted collaboration when revealed.

            You need a mirror if you’re going to accuse others of bad faith.

          • AS

            Are you accusing me of removing your posts here too?!!

            And are you under the impression that you’re ‘answering’ my points meant you’d explained everything and it would be ‘bad faith’ for me to repeat them?

            Let me explain: I take the emergence of the ‘alt-right’ (Trump, Breibart, Britain First, Farage etc.) as a dangerous political moment and WikiLeaks assisting that emergence in any way is, for me, a real cause for concern. Hence digging away at this issue.

          • Macky

            @AS, This is where you came in, stating that both Assange & Craig Murray have been “coopted by the Putin regime”;

            https://www.craigmurray.org.uk/archives/2017/11/one-following-true/comment-page-3/#comment-708012

            You later linked to a Vox article which you claimed “indicate proactive and systematic pursuit of communications with the Trump team & Wikileakes; I drew your attention that the Vox piece is based on a Atlantic Piece, that deliberately & maliciously edited one of the DMs, or commits as Caity Johnstone puts it, “journalistic malpractice”, which changed the meaning to give a different perception. Yet funny enough, you couldn’t accept that, even though it clear as daylight to any fair-minded person. You can follow our exchanges under the above link, except that the Mods gave you the last word as my last reply with I foolishly didn’t save, as I spent considerable time summing-up & refuting all your arguments, simple disappeared; here’s when I noticed it;

            https://www.craigmurray.org.uk/archives/2017/11/one-following-true/comment-page-4/#comments

            I resent doing all that work again, as I think that you’ve taken advantage of its disappearance, to play the idiot & start the exact same attack on Wikileaks afresh, using the same points that have already been refuted.

          • AS

            @Macky

            You mean to say the Atlantic did the same as you just did in editing my own comment?! I actually wrote (word for word):

            “Personally I’ve gone from being a huge admirer of Assange and Craig Murray to thinking both have indeed, in some form, been coopted by the Putin regime. It’s to my mind the only coherent explanation for otherwise inexplicable actions and allegiances. I am very happy to be persuaded otherwise, but I’m not even sure either of them (or at least CM) realize how they’ve been duped.”

            That’s much more carefully nuanced. It was also YOU who said I’d stopped talking about Russia. I do think it’s probable Putin’s regime has been involved in various kinds of attempted manipulation. That’s not the same as saying anyone is one their pay cheque or deliberately conspiring. Until proven otherwise, I assume not.

            As for the Atlantic and its edited DM, I simply didn’t agree with your argument as the substance of the DM exchanges remained and remains the same. The fact you consider them a refutation is neither here nor there. Surely you not so self-centred not to realize that?

            If you’re being modded, that’s also nothing to do with me. Projecting your resentment onto me is misguided to say the least.

          • Macky

            @AS,

            “You mean to say the Atlantic did the same as you just did in editing my own comment?! I actually wrote (word for word)”

            No, chalk & cheese; I faithfully extracted the relevant part, the Atlantic deliberated messed around with the syntax so as to give a totally false meaning; I’m finding very hard to believe that you cannot see this.

            “It was also YOU who said I’d stopped talking about Russia.”

            Yes because here in this new engagement, you came in just on Wikileaks swinging the election for Trump meme, without your previous Russia dupes bit.

            “If you’re being modded, that’s also nothing to do with me.

            I didn’t say or imply that it was; just that we’ve been through these same old points before, and because of my missing Post, you have re-launch your attack on Wikileaks with nothing new, just your old points if they are new points that haven’t already been addressed.

          • AS

            Yes, you decontextualized a phrase, that’s what manipulative editing is about.

            If we’re going to discuss resentment, I don’t resent your opinion at all. I’m listening to you but just apparently disagree with a lot of your base assumptions and conclusions.

            What I do resent is political discourse being distorted in the UK and elsewhere by the kind of wholly anti-democratic manipulation made famous by ‘Putin-bots’ and the like. A few years ago I stopped writing in the Guardian comments as I became clearly dispirited with the sudden shift to the right in so many comments, culminating in the xenophobic Brexit comments. Maybe that was a shift in the use of the internet among genuine rightwing users. But maybe, and more likely, it was being boosted and coordinated by other agents (private organisations, parties and/or governments) paying people to swamp comments sections, as well as facebook, twitter etc. This has seriously damaged political debate in general and gone a long way to producing some deeply unpleasant political outcomes (unless you like Trump and the Tory Brexit bunch running your country). The idea that WikiLeaks might be in any way involved in this kind of ‘Cambridge Analytica’ style manipulation is what worries me. Not what the organization has released on Clinton, the DNC etc. thus far. As a Sanders supporter, I view the information released as indispensable for the future. But trying to coordinate closely with the Trump campaign puts them on the side of non-transparency, the intent to deceive the public, and a political alliance with the alt-right. (WikiLeaks saying that they were being ‘slandered’ as anti-Clinton and pro-Trump in a private DM to the Trump campaign to assist the latter in their campaign really is vacuous fluff. Quite why you think it says anything to negate the ‘slander’ of being anti-Clinton is beyond me, though the Atlantic could have safely included it.)

            Safe to say this discussion isn’t going anywhere as you’re refusing to engage properly. Enjoy the rest of the weekend.

          • Macky

            “this discussion isn’t going anywhere”

            Precisely because you haven’t got anything new to offer, just the same bizarre inability not to realize that you’ve been played by the person who did the editing on the Atlantic piece; I guess he was banking on people like you, so fair dues, he’s really earnt his thirty pieces of silver.

      • AS

        I’ll return you the favour. Those who want to see the system ‘shaken’ by Trump really know full well that he will do no such thing, he’ll entrench inequality and the power of capital (if you bother reading the report I attached). And those who have the luxury of pretending to want the system shaken are all – curiously – white, middle class and financially comfortable. At no real risk from an extreme right government.

        • fedup

          This is the state of the bastion of the “freedoms” and “human rights”, that everyday is drip fed by the fake news organisations to the captive audiences;
          Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights Professor Philip Alston and his take on the current levels of extreme poverty in the US; “American Dream is rapidly becoming American Illusion,”

          Check it out before it has been cleansed/sanitised and sent down the memoryhole.

        • Loony

          Trump us facing a Herculean task and is almost certain to fail in many respects. However he is manifestly willing to try and he (and the American public) are reaping some successes.

          The criminality, corruption, politicization, and incompetence of the FBI is bring revealed layer by layer. Organized pedophile and other sexual abuse networks are coming under pressure. The egregious lies of the MSM are being exposed on an almost daily basis. All this and Trump is still able to alert the British to their own desperate plight. So far Trump has done enough to offer a ray of hope to the masses.

          Hopefully next up he will shine a bright light on the $21 trillion that has been stolen from Federal budgets since 1998 (all documented by Dr. Mark Skidmore and others). It is no wonder that the powerful are reacting with ever more observable hysteria.

          Sure Trump is not about to start doling out wheelbarrows of cash to the poor – but he can and is limiting the ability of other people to steal what little they have. He is certainly acting to protect them from organized sexual exploitation and he is finally giving them an opportunity to access something approximating the truth. Donald Trump cannot control what people may choose to do with the opportunity that he is creating for them. His role is limited to creating that opportunity, and against all odds he is lifting the heel of oppression from the faces of the poor in certain key areas.

          • AS

            Trump is working solely for anti-democratic ibertarian capitalists like the Kochs and other Republican (and Clinton Democrat) party funders who want their taxes reduced to a close to zero as possible. Likewise environmental regulation of industry etc. The rest is ‘trickle-down economics’ hogwash that not even they take seriously, and the same kind of populist nationalism used by authoritarian rulers the world over.

          • nevermind

            There is also a small matter of 110tons of German owned Gold, as yet not repatriated. Some say it does not exist anymore, and whilst others stall the negotiations, this conspiracy/fact is getting bigger.

            /www.bloomberg.com/news/features/2015-02-05/germany-s-gold-repatriation-activist-peter-boehringer-gets-results

          • Loony

            Sure, if exposing corruption, lies and all manner of mendacity is anti democratic and authoritarian then that is Trump.

            Environmental regulation of industry is a sick joke – one more thing that is being exposed by Trump. Shifting production from advanced economies with deep and complex legal and regulatory systems to places like China actually increases emissions. Something that is so obvious even to proponents of “environmentalism” that they are reduced to hurling buckets of excrement over the person daring to expose their vacuous claims.

            Consider that earlier this year Xi Jinping visited Shanghai. For about a week before he turned up numerous industrial facilities in the environs of Shanghai were shut down just so Xi Jinping would not have to witness the phenomenal levels of pollution. Ask if this kind of thing happens in the US and ask why this was not considered remotely newsworthy by the MSM. Answering these questions allows for a fuller appreciation of the grotesque delusional thinking that surrounds environmentalism and global warming. Follow the money find the lie. It is not hard.

  • giyane

    I’m not sure what the military dimwit who warned about Russia cutting our fibre-optic cables thought they might do with them. Cut them up to make fancy chandeliers for the Kremlin? A bit dangerous isn’t it – leaving glass at the bottom of the ocean. Poor Gulliver might trip over it and cut his toe. What kind of fake-news planet do MSM live on?

    • Republicofscotland

      Giyane.

      Operation Ivy Bells was the benchmark back in the day for tapping undersea communication lines. It was of course carried out by the US.

      However, a US intelligence/communications expert, passed info onto the Russian’s who removed the device sometime later (its thought the Soviets fed false info for sometime to the American intel agencies). Apparently the tapping device (if genuine) can still be seen in a Russian museum.

      • Sharp Ears

        My great grandfather who hailed from Liverpool was a master mariner. He was the captain of a cable laying vessel working across the Atlantic.

        • Republicofscotland

          Was he really, very interesting stuff Sharp Ears. I recall watching a programme on the subject the marniers standing next to a huge hamster like wheel bound with miles of cable. You should proud knowning his job, was connecting people in a sense.

    • Kempe

      The first act of war carried out by the British in 1914 was to send the CS Alert out to sever German undersea telegraph cables. Some were lifted and diverted to allied terminals.

      The Zimmerman Telegram which brought the US into the war in 1917 was intercepted by British intelligence. There’s nothing new in any of this.

      • giyane

        Kempe
        When I last checked, we are not at war with Russia. We are not even at cold war. Why on earth would Russia want to cut our internet lines? Not just comic, pure farce!

      • Republicofscotland

        Kempe.

        I was referring to “tapping” however you do have a valid point, still according to J. Wrinkler and B. Tuchman, who both wrote books on this particular subject, all five cables were cut between 03:00 and 07:00 with reference to the British GPO memo dated the 7th of August 1914.

        Both authors correctly identified the cable steamer the C.S Alert, and not as some have said the C.S. Telconia.

        I can find nothing indicating any of the five undersea cables were lifted and diverted as you suggest.

        As a result the German’s could communicate with their own embassies in the Americas by only two methods: by radio from Nauen (near Berlin) to Saybille (on Long Island) or by by a route passing from Stockholm to Buenos Aires, known as the “Swedish roundabout”.

    • nevermind

      Gyanne, anyone with a submarine can cut these internet cables and blame it on somebody else, this story is fluff.
      Makes you wonder/inquisitive as to what happens in the acquired Argentinian properties and submarine base.

  • Trowbridge H. Ford

    The world continues to spin out of control with Boris Johnson sipping peach juice from nuclear wrecked Fukushima, Rex Tillerson saying that there will be no discussions with North Korea until it stops nuclear tests which Washington controls, the poet Ovid can now return from exile in Romania to Rome, Theresa May can read Machiavelli in Italian because she knows Latin, and Trump, an ‘old dotard’ according to Kim Jong-un,. is wining his confrontation with the North Korean leader though he continues to control natural events like the weather and quakes.

    What else is coming up in the pipeline?

  • Republicofscotland

    Re my comment earlier on China and its attempt to undermine the Petrodollar, in favour of the Yuan.

    It would appear that Venezuela has already made the switch from the Petrodollar to the Euro, to avoid paying US penalties. Caracas has ordered all crude oil contracts to be converted into the Euro’s.

    The Great Satan will step up its unjust campaign to remove the current Venezuelan administration.

    • Kempe

      Or whatever happens to be the weaker of a basket of currencies. A sign of desperation. A thousand dollars worth of local currency when Maduro came to power in 2013 is now worth $1.20.

      • Republicofscotland

        Kempe.

        From the removal of Allende to the blocking of aid to Nicaragua, to the funding of human rights abuses in Honduras and the crushing of Hiatiann democracy, along with the multi-sponsored terror attacks on Cuba, and the supporting of the Argentine Dirty war, not forgetting the funding of the El Salvador Death squads, to the multiple coups in Guatemala, and Operation Condor.

        The Great Satan has pumped billions of dollars into South and Central America, to mould and bend it to suit it.

        Venezuela is currently experiencing the wrath of the Great Satan.

        • Kempe

          Venezuela is currently experiencing tyranny and incompetence.

          Blame your universal scapegoat if it comforts you.

          • Republicofscotland

            If it’s any comfort to you Kempe, it’s not just the US that’s meddling, China is attempting to crush the Hong Kong independence movement, and replace elected official with Beijing puppets.

            All very Rajoy-esque if you ask me.

  • nevermind

    Could the moderators who removed JSD’s post here, with Neil Clark’s post box address please send it to my email address

    Or publsh JSD’s post here again, after all we want to support the chaps libel case, don’t we?

    Why was it removed anyway? did it have an swearwords or some j….ish secret information in it? ridiculous.

  • Republicofscotland

    Trump just doesn’t know when to stop digging.

    Senior Trump administration officials outlined their view on Friday that Jerusalem’s Western Wall ultimately will be declared a part of Israel, in another declaration sure to enflame passions among Palestinians and others in the Middle East.

    The issue is sensitive because the wall is beyond Israel’s pre-1967 borders, and abuts some of the Islamic world’s most revered sites.

    https://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-5057461,00.html

    • BrianFujisan

      Thank You For Youy’re Ealier Respons RoS…. I’m only Meters .Away..From Stunning Views….It’s been Amazing doon Here…

      Keep up thr Good Work Guys

    • Loony

      Donald Trump stood for the Presidency of the United States on a number of policy platforms one being that he was willing and able to deal with sensitive issues. He is now doing so.

      For many years the main tenet of western political thought can best be described as cowardice. It was for example the policy of cowardice that led to the sacking of Ambassador Murray – as this required much less courage than actually dealing with the issues he raised. Cowardice explains the continued British devotion to the EU – much less courage required to defy the electorate. It is for reasons of cowardice that Blair has never been held to account by the law and cowardice explains the Obama policy toward substantially everything but especially toward the criminality of banks and Hillary Clinton.

      Trump is not a coward and is attempting to confront complex and sensitive issues. What would have him do? Raise his hands in surrender and ignore the issue? or simply agree with everything that “Palestinians and others in the Middle East” may say. If so why?

      • Republicofscotland

        “Trump is not a coward and is attempting to confront complex and sensitive issues. What would have him do? Raise his hands in surrender and ignore the issue? or simply agree with everything that “Palestinians and others in the Middle East” may say. If so why?”

        Absolutely remarkable Loony, that’s all I can say about that above paragraph, but not in a good way of course.

        Trump has just exacerbated the already fragile coexistence in Jerusalem. Because of a needless and thoughtless declaration (payback for sponsorship and backing on the POTUS trail) people are dying.

        No Trump is a coward, too craven and spineless to do the right thing, which is to get both parties around a table and thrash out a two-state solution.

        More people will die, sons of Palestinian’s and Israeli’s, both Arab and J**ish parents will cry rivers, both will feel unrelenting pain, strangely these parents will share a common bond, one of a sense of loss.

        Trump has added fuel to a already raging fire, and ignited a heated discussion amongst Arab nations in the region. The US is meant to a neutral arbitor in the conflict, not a instigator.

        • Loony

          People have been dying in the Middle East for a very long time. People have been sitting around tables for a very long time – nothing much seems to change.

          Here is a short video of Presidents Clinton, Bush and Obama all promising to do exactly what Trump has done.

          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8SClsKQEcpc

          Aint it funny how no-one showed any interest in the pronouncements of Clinton, Bush or Obama but everyone is outraged by Trump doing exactly what he said he would do. All the more remarkable when you consider that the stated position of Clinton, Bush, Obama and Trump is exactly the same.

          • Republicofscotland

            Loony.

            Clinton et al stated they would, but didn’t Trump stated he would and he did.

            Tell me Loony why did the other POTUS’s fail to follow through?

            Would it be because they realised the grime consequences of that particular action?

            Not only is Trump a coward, he’s a stupid one too boot.

          • Loony

            OK lets apply a little reason to this.

            In 1992 Clinton says he will move the US Embassy to Jerusalem but did not do so because he realized the grime (sic) consequences that would follow.

            In 2000 Bush promises exactly the same thing. At no point in the previous 8 years did Bush or his advisers come to understand what Clinton came to understand. At no point was there any communication between Clinton and Bush (after all the location of a US embassy is not a partisan issue) , But then suddenly upon his election Bush too realized the grime (sic) consequences of such an action.

            Fast forward another 8 years and Obama promises exactly the same thing. For your argument to hold water Obama must have been so stupid as to barely be able to feed himself. You are asking the world to believe that Obama had no idea why both Clinton and Bush had ultimately decided against relocating the US embassy. Given that Clinton;s wife became Obama’s Secretary of State you are asking people to believe that Bill Clinton never discussed this matter with his wife, and offered his wife no advice whatsoever, and that in any event Hillary Clinton was so lacking in imagination and understanding that despite all of the evidence she had no idea why it would be inappropriate to relocate the US embassy. Why then would someone so demonstrably stupid be an appropriate choice for Secretary of State?

            Finally let us look at what you really want – which is politicians that both lie to you and who are congenitally stupid.. Ask yourself exactly how you or anyone else is going to benefit through perpetual lies and perpetual stupidity.

            It is time for the truth and Trump is a man that is unafraid of the truth.

  • Loony

    As now seems to be as an appropriate time as ever to extol the virtues of President Trump here is a short article that both exposes the corruption of the FBI and also provides some hope that the FBI is starting to turn on itself.

    http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-12-16/ex-fbi-assistant-director-strzok-fabricated-information-and-belongs-leavenworth

    So far as we know Trump has done little more than send a few tweets – the effects of those tweets could well be seismic.

    Trump is the last best hope that exists for a return to some semblance of a return to the rule of law. Given the power of the US all citizens of the world should be thankful for Donald Trump and for the wisdom of the US citizenry in ignoring all of the siren voices that assailed them and for decisively voting for an end to criminality and cowardice.

    So far so good – but much remains to be achieved.

    • Tony_0pmoc

      Loony,

      Whilst I am not necessarily disagreeing with you, because he hasn’t done what Hillary Clinton would have done by now (kick off a Nuclear WWIII), and maybe much of the crap Trump comes out with is sheer bluff…but can you give a rational explanation to this photograph? It doesn’t look very Christian, nor even Pagan to me.

      Is this some kind of Satanic Worship? They all look Dodgy to me, and I hope they don’t turn up at The Summer Solstice at Stonehenge next year.

      https://pbs.twimg.com/media/DAY5yVTUAAECF6i.jpg

      Tony

  • Tony_0pmoc

    The Telegraph has excelled itself today, by producing the most ridiculous piece of nonsense, possibly ever. Please do not subscribe, nor actually buy The Daily Telegraph. I know almost nothing about Bitcoin, and do not want to, but out Tulips will come up again, this spring as regular as clockwork.

    I thought The Guardian was bad, but this takes the absolute pits. It seems they have all gone completely mad. Do they actually believe the crap they write?

    “How mining bitcoin is ‘killing the planet'”

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2017/12/16/virtual-bitcoin-production-killing-planet/

    Tony

    • Loony

      I have not bothered to read the Telegraph article you link to so I have no idea what it says.

      I do know that mining bitcoin consumes some 29TWh of electricity per year. This compares with an annual 25TWh of consumption for the Republic of Ireland.

      Given that Bitcoin serves no useful purpose whatsoever some may consider this to constitute a gigantic waste of electricity. Given that every second person seems to be wringing their hands over global warming and urging people to use less energy then some may conclude that mining Bitcoin merely serves to highlight the schizophrenic nature of modern society. No doubt soon someone will pop up and bemoan the surge in mental health conditions.

      • Tony_0pmoc

        Loony, As bizarre as it may seem, my son and I discussed this problem for ages over a year ago. We even worked how to do the prototype and literally started digging. He runs an ISP and still lives at home. His servers in various Datacentres in Europe (none now in The USA) consume an enormous amount of energy which costs a lot of money, and then even more energy is used to cool the servers down – all of which is wasted into the atmosphere…

        So we thought as a prototype – move some of the servers here, and in winter with water cooling, use the energy to warm the entire house, and provide hot water in winter.

        The idea if it worked would more then halve our costs and save an enormous amount of energy which is otherwise wasted.

        We haven’t done it yet, cos there are lots of potential problems. However I think it is still a fundamentally good idea. On a large scale, it would mean that Energy providers, should in future work with Internet Service Providers in the same building. In fact the equivalent, was already done in London about a hundred years ago…and probably still works. The heat from the powerstation in winter is pumped round all the local housing to keep them warm…

        But that is a bit of a socialist thing init? – and you Americans wouldn’t approve.

        Tony

        • Stu

          “So we thought as a prototype – move some of the servers here, and in winter with water cooling, use the energy to warm the entire house, and provide hot water in winter.”

          Save on your heating this winter by filling your home with industrial data servers…. I think this plan needs more thought Tony.

      • Republicofscotland

        “No doubt soon someone will pop up and bemoan the surge in mental health conditions.”

        Loony.

        Maybe your brave truther Trump, will pop up and sort it all out, because according to you he gets things done.

        Oh wait Trump actively undermined Obamacare which incorporated treatments for mental health. Not only did your truther, undermine Obamacare Trump signed into law in February a law repealing the restrictions people with mental health problems, access to firearms.

        So lets get this straight, the bold truther Trump, removed or severely hindered people with mental health chances of receiving reasonably priced treatment. But repealed the law that denied them access to firearms.

        Hmmmmm.

  • Sharp Ears

    ‘Darling and Brown also lined up some lucrative niches for themselves.

    Morgan Stanley has said former Chancellor Alistair Darling will join the bank’s board of directors.

    Mr Darling, who served as the Chancellor of the Exchequer from 2007 to 2010, will take up the role in January.

    His move follows former Prime Minister Gordon Brown’s appointment to an advisory panel at the global investment firm Pimco.

    Mr Darling, 62, played a key role in addressing the global economic crisis.

    Morgan Stanley’s chief executive James Gorman said the US bank would “greatly benefit from his experience.”

    “He brings strong leadership experience, as well as insight into both the global economy and the global financial system,” said Mr Gorman.

    In 2014 members of Morgan Stanley’s board of directors received $75,000 (£49,960) a year plus an additional $10,000 to $30,000 for leading or joining a committee within the board. Each board member also received $250,000 in stock awards.’
    http://www.bbc.com/news/business-35046961

    Laughable on view of their records. Pimco, one of those investment management outfits, is huge with assets of $1.6 trillion under their management. Goodness knows how much Broon is picking up. I wouldn’t want his advice on anything let alone finance.
    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/PIMCO

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