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06 March 2014

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Babak Makkinejad

It is not "incompetent elites", rather hubristic elites that have brought NATO and Russia to this juncture; in my opinion.

Among the protagonists of this drama only Putin has - distantly - some military background and experience. The US and EU elected leaders have none.

Babak Makkinejad

A friend of mine explained it to me like this: "You either have $ 100 million dollars or you are a nobody."

confusedponderer

There are six federally funded 'Parteinahe Stiftungen':

Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung (CDU, non-profit association)
Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung (SPD, non-profit association)
Friedrich-Naumann-Stiftung für die Freiheit (FDP; foundation)
Heinrich-Böll-Stiftung (Greens, non-profit association)
Hanns-Seidel-Stiftung (CSU, non-profit association)
Rosa-Luxemburg-Stiftung (Die Linke, non-profit association)

http://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Parteinahe_Stiftung

From what I read, NED-world was very loosely modelled after them.

I think in comparison with the US spin-offs the German foundations are generally more benign.

They do consultation on legislation, good governance, hold seminars, give stipends to students foreign and domestic, build relations and do generally helpful stuff like that. They also do studies from the respective organisations political POV.

So, they are similar structurally, but not necessarily in terms of their actual activities or the scope and extent of their activities.

That said, that was when I last looked.

They may have changed towards more American lines of operation, or NED world may have farmed out part of their activities to them (with Germany being eager to help in order to improve relations). That would be a distinct possibility.

In the Cold War the major ones they must have been also involved heavily in activities that culminated in the Helsinki Accords.

Anyway, the German foundations did a lot of work in the transition period in 'New Europe' and South Africa. And I think they largely did good work.

As a result of such consultation, a surprising number of the former Warsaw Pact states states largely adopted at least in part German constitutional and administrative law.

We have drawn some relevant lessons from communist and authoritarian rule, and I think that they could have done worse than to copy. I was told by a participant in these consultations that the countries explicitly rejected the US model of constitutional law for its weaknesses.

Iirc the Hungarians had basically a copy of our Grundgesetz until Orban had it revised for not being Hungarian enough (and incidentally too restrictive towards his ambitions of perpetual Fidecz rule).

But I digress.

Thomas

The Chassidic Communities of Eastern Europe bore the brunt of the Shoah as they were too poor to flee. They were also staunch opponents to Zionism.

William R. Cumming

PL! Assuming this comment might have been headed in my direction why did they retire?

turcopolier

WRC

A contractor treats its employees better than the government ad you can collect both pays. pl

William R. Cumming

VietNam Vet! Good comment! Some individuals more astute than me believe that off the book financial instruments are at the root of the problem and the fact that capital flows in bites and bits cannot be regulated.

Some of these individuals tell me Snowden's theft was designed to be fully disclosed to the MSM and public at some point in time. They state most of the theft occurring in the virtual world of bites and bits, even if discovered, will not be disclosed by the perps or those victimized for perhaps obvious reasons.

As you have state technology run rampant. Perhaps the LUDDITES had some merit in their beliefs.

William R. Cumming

Extract from wiki:

The Luddites were 19th-century English textile artisans who protested against newly developed labour-saving machinery from 1811 to 1817. The stocking frames, spinning frames and power looms introduced during the Industrial Revolution threatened to replace the artisans with less-skilled, low-wage labourers, leaving them without work.

Although the origin of the name Luddite (/ˈlʌd.aɪt/) is uncertain, a popular theory is that the movement was named after Ned Ludd, a youth who allegedly smashed two stocking frames in 1779, and whose name had become emblematic of machine destroyers. The name evolved into the imaginary General Ludd or King Ludd, a figure who, like Robin Hood, was reputed to live in Sherwood Forest.

William R. Cumming

WOW!

William R. Cumming

The Chinese penetration of S.America larger that pre-WWII German penetration. The Monroe Doctrine dead long ago because US unable to enforce it. IMO of course!

William R. Cumming

PL! So is anything going on in the IC inherently governmental?

turcopolier

WRC

You have seen too many movies. IC contractors are supplements to the IC agencies' work force. they work under IC agency supervision. People leave the IC and armed forces because they can and because they can do better outside military or civil service status. Duty or work on the IC is not fun. These agencies hire or seek the assignment of intelligent, well educated people and then they treat them poorly. These agencies are run on the basis of: patronage, cliques, affirmative action foolishness and a general indifference to the people. Personnel are required to fly tens of thousands of miles in economy class arriving as physical wrecks required to work immediately in complex tasks. TDY vouchers are closely scrutinized to find errors that can require re-imbursement of the government. Cheap hotels are a rule. Is it surprising that good people seek better treatment and income? After I left the government with 34 years service I never rode in economy class again. I was well paid. I did not have to disclose my total assets to some bureaucrat and I became accustomed to staying in five star hotels. what is it that you want? Is it that the government make slaves out of its people , reject their service as annuitants or that pimply faced snotty little pricks like Snowden and Chelsea Manning be taken on? pl

confusedponderer

PS: I seem to recall that Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung staff was being expelled from Egypt, notably together with people from NED, among others.

That may be an indicator that the German Parteinahe Stiftungen have taken up the sort of work NED is doing.

William R. Cumming

PL! Thanks for the from your head and heart response. Unlike you as a second generation civil servant I expected little in monetary awards or rewards or otherwise but was content to perform faithful service on behalf of the other taxpayers and citizens and residents of the USA!

I decided in my teens that MAMMON was not to be worshiped!

I did hope to attend the US Naval Academy but at age 12 eyesight needed correction. The standard for the Academy in my time was 20-20 without correction. The US Army trained me as a Forward OBSERVER--go figure. I shot Expert in basic training in torrential rain with eyeglasses. Much to the surprise of my DI and Range Safety Officer.

turcopolier

WRC

My. My. Bless you. we are not all such saints. My family has served in the US Army sine the WBS. We reserve the right to bitch about the system. pl

Highlander

Not because we are militarily unable, but because as a culture/people,we have lost the will.

Not to mention the small fact that our cultural,political,business elites at the helm couldn't find their own butts with a road map. Much less could they do something manly (oh My god! I'm sexist)like defend our key interests.

fanto

Colonel, Sir – of course you and your blog and most of the commenters are ‘toxic’.(and followed by NSA?) I thoroughly enjoyed the contribution of Confused Ponderer and the comment of Viet Vet.
Finally I read a clearly stated observations of the remarkable conformity of media in the West, as if manipulated from behind by an ‘invisible hand’. The nearly ‘unisono’ timing of the news and commentaries is uncanny. I believe that the higher managements of all media are reading the same ‘user manual’ – and they enforce the guidelines with great precision. Anyone below them is watched for toeing the line, here in the West as well as all over the world. The high managerial positions in the media are of course political assignments and the people in power decide who is going to get those jobs. This is evident when reading the press or watching Western TV – with very sporadic exceptions and fig-leaf midnight programs. The recent ‘eclat’ about resignations of Russian TV anchorwoman makes the ‘freedom of media in the West’ more transparent - that resignation ‘on air’ has never been seen in the West until the Russian TV case. It seems that there is less freedom of expression for those working in the Western media – for fear of reprisal or being dismissed. There are cases of people quietly resigning from responsible positions in order not to be ‘blacklisted’ in future job search. (cases in point – several prominent anchor-people leaving mass media and joining the Al Jazeera America channel, or Gen. Shinseki – although this is a different story). An old joke from the good old Soviet time era comes to mind: An American and a Soviet try to compare their freedoms – the American says – I can go in front of the White House and scream ‘you Eisenhower, you scum you, SOB ‘ and nothing will happen to me. The Soviet says – ‘ we have the same freedom, we can go in front of Kremlin and scream ‘ you Eisenhower, you SOB”. Now – ironically, a person in the RT-TV in the USA can go and pronounce on –air how bad the Russian leadership is.
After all – it is ‘economy stupid’ for the lower echelons in the media, those who are not independently wealthy and can do without that job, it is a hard choice – if they lose the job and become boycotted, their career is in jeopardy, their family, their standard of living can be immediately negatively affected, and they have no choice but to stay in the West, because the alternative is not available, unless they would ‘vote with their feet’ and emigrate to the ‘opposite camp’ (i.e. Russia, China, or –tongue in cheek, Saudi Arabia). After all “life is better here” that is why so much conformity. Until the standard of living will be nearly equalized and the language barriers will be less important – the West has an advantage. Very few Americans would want to emigrate to countries where they would need to learn a foreign language (some GI’s did do that during the Vietnam War and fled to Sweden and learned Swedish, most recent example may be Snowden who probably is adapting to life in Russia ).

turcopolier

fanto

SST is widely read in the government. NSA does not need to do anything. they are probably more interested in the rest of my commo suite. pl

Fred

VV,

Perhaps Mr. Putin could follow the Chinese example and get the neocons’ attention by knocking off a couple of our oligarchs. I don’t hear any outrage over the dead Chinese ones (see the links below) nor can I imagine the followers ot St. Steve Jobs – the guy who made a few billion of those economic slaves in China – would be out in the street if one of the Koch brothers or Ms. Huffington met with an ‘accident’.

http://www.forbes.com/sites/raykwong/2011/07/25/friends-dont-let-friends-become-chinese-billionaires/

http://bloodandtreasure.typepad.com/blood_treasure/2011/07/72-dead-billionaires.html

Babak Makkinejad

You wrote:

"– if they lose the job and become boycotted, their career is in jeopardy, their family, their standard of living can be immediately negatively affected..."

That is in fact what happened to Phil Donahue:

"Soon after the show's cancellation, an internal MSNBC memo was leaked to the press stating that Donahue should be fired because he opposed the imminent U.S. invasion of Iraq and that he would be a "difficult public face for NBC in a time of war."[20] Donahue commented in 2007 that the management of MSNBC, owned by General Electric and Microsoft, required that "we have two conservative (guests) for every liberal. I was counted as two liberals."[21]"

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Phil_Donahue

Charles I

As am I. Please sir, may I have your archives after you die?

Harry

Oh I remember. They murdered all of my uncles family with the exception of my uncle who walked from Lvov to Vienna.

Western Ukrainians have a deep streak of anti-semitism through them. Its the heartland of the pogram. I love the irony of Merkel giving them her full hearted support.

The EU and the Neocons have behaved despicably. Lets hope they don't manage to kill us all.

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