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21 March 2018

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John Minnerath

What does the Committee think about the recent moves by Xi Jinping in the PRC ?
He doesn't seem to be another Mao Zedong, but he's certainly going against the warnings of Deng Xiaoping about one man rule.

JPB

Turkish press is reporting that 'TurkStream', the pipeline to bring natural gas from Russia to Turkey, is now 80% complete and to be in operation by later this year. It is expected to deliver close to 16 billion cubic meters per year from Gazprom to Turkish gas distribution networks. A second phase scheduled for next year will reportedly deliver an equal amount to Greece and other points in southern Europe.

https://www.dailysabah.com/energy/2018/03/21/turkstreams-first-phase-more-than-80-pct-complete

https://cdni.rt.com/files/2017.05/original/590fc970c4618849558b463c.jpg

This is in addition to the existing 'BlueStream' pipeline from Russia to Turkey, operational since 2005, that also has a 16 billion cubic meter per year throughput.

Why the Western concern about NordStream pipeline but none about TurkStream? Are there no sanction problems for the Swiss company working with GazProm? Plus I wonder if this is one of the reasons why Russia has lately become paranoid regarding US Navy FON operations in the Black Sea?

Terry

I was thinking and researching about China today as well.

In terms of income inequality the USA is worse than China by some measures.

US - 1% earn >20% of income vs. 12% for bottom 50%
China 1% earn 12% of income vs 13% for bottom 50%

The Chinese bottom 50% actually make more than the 1% in pretax income.

From 1978 to 2015;

In US bottom 50% income growth: -1%
China bottom 50% income growth: 400%

In US top 1% up from 7% to over 20%
China top 1% up from 6% to 12%.

The number of family in poverty is at the highest level since 1959 when the poverty level was first tracked and the US ranks last (or first depending on how you measure) amongst developed countries on income levels of the poor.

Trust in government in China: 76%, in US: 47%

The Chinese economy is now larger that the US in terms of purchasing power and expected to be larger than the US in all measurements by 2020.

How does that trust number affect the ability of the government to govern? How does it affect the government's approach to government of it's population?

One would think that when the #1 power is challenged its best strategy would be to ensure that the #2 and #3 powers don't ally. This is what Nixon did with China, peeling them away from the Soviet Union. The Russians have a smaller population and an economy only 1/10th ours. China is the real challenger. Yet we are doing the opposite, going after the weaker power and forcing Russia and China together.

Economics:

https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2016/12/the-world-s-top-economy-the-us-vs-china-in-five-charts/

https://www.cbsnews.com/news/usa-china-income-inequality-economic-research/

"Before accounting for taxes and transfers, the U.S. ranked 10th in income inequality; among the countries with more unequal income distributions were France, the U.K. and Ireland. But after taking taxes and transfers into account, the U.S. had the second-highest level of inequality, behind only Chile. "

http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2013/12/19/global-inequality-how-the-u-s-compares/

" The five countries with the worst income inequality — Chile, Mexico, Turkey, the United States, and Israel — also had the five highest poverty rates in the OECD. The relationship is not perfect, however. The United Kingdom fell just outside the five worst countries for income equality, but its poverty rate was 13th lowest among developed nations."

https://247wallst.com/special-report/2015/05/29/countries-with-the-widest-gap-between-the-rich-and-the-poor/

Trust:

Suggest flipping to slide 13:

https://www.edelman.com/research/2017-trust-barometer-global-results

https://thediplomat.com/2013/06/government-for-the-people-in-china/

Eric Newhill

It is past time for Congress to turn their backs on the bomb lobby's money make bombs to be made illegal for civilians - especially fully semi-automatic assault bombs. At least institute universal background checks for bomb material purchases.

Nate

David H,

A question came up that I was unsure about the answer in my HS class. Doing a small unit on the Russian Revolution. Lenin seizes control but needs to introduce the New Economic Policy. Peasants are now allowed to sell surplus goods to help production rates. However, if the government had seized all money previous where did people get the money to buy this "surplus"? My guess is if you had money it was a crime or the money came from the black market, which was also a crime. Did the government buy this "surplus" and reintroduce money into the system that way?

First time poster, apologies if this is too minor, just looking for help on the question.

Nate

EEngineer

My take on it is that many Chinese still remember the chaos of their cultural revolution and they want a strong level headed leader to keep the trains running on time; as it were. I think a similar situation exists in Russia with respect towards Putin and his stewardship. The western press may tar both with all sorts of silly labels, but both appear to be quite popular and respected at home for being good leaders.

Eric Newhill

Loch Ness type monster has been found:
http://www.foxnews.com/tech/2018/03/21/loch-ness-monster-found-shocking-pictures-unidentified-sea-creature-surface.html

That one looks like an unfortunate baby that got beached to me.

Some day maybe a captured Big Foot? An intergalactic craft?

james

anyone else following craig murray for the past few weeks?

https://www.craigmurray.org.uk/

he has given excellent coverage on the skripal family poisoning and britians official response to it all...worth checking out, if you haven't already...

blue peacock

Thanks John for bringing this up about Xi.

He has methodically consolidated power during his first term purging his rivals using the cloak of "corruption". And now is creating a cult of personality around him equating him to Mao & Deng.

These moves would imply a return to strongman rule in China. And quite possibly increasing risk of military conflict in the region.

turcopolier

james

Hard to know what to make of this Voltaire Net story. Intriguing. pl

The Beaver

Why did israel release info about this bombing?

https://www.timesofisrael.com/defense-minister-regrets-releasing-details-of-2007-syrian-nuclear-site-attack/

To scare Iran or they know that Iran will retaliate ?

shepherd

A while back I objected when one of the authors here mentioned an article that linked Fusion One to “Silicon Valley billionaires.” My objection was that those folks have their own agenda, and that seeing them in the light of the usual binary liberal/conservative worldview was a mistake.

We’re seeing that play out today with the Facebook/Cambridge Analytica thing. I’ve commented here from time to time on what I believed to be the basic offering of Cambridge Analytica: an engine that allowed them to determine personality profiles on people using links. I became aware of this technology before the 2016 election and was interested in it because I think it has great potential in the context of medical care and addiction medicine. Cambridge Analytica told the world that they could build those profiles in a very efficient way, which was intriguing.

But that, of course, is not what happened. Instead, CA gained access to deep personal profile information of 50 million people, tied that to unique voter IDs, and used THAT in the context of the political campaign. This is actually a big deal.

Not to get in the weeds, but you can break consumer data down into two categories: opt-in and anonymized. Normally, when you sign on to something like Facebook, you opt in to share your data with Facebook. However, you also limit the amount you share. Also, every time you join a loyalty program or even make a purchase, you are to some degree sharing your data.

Marketers and political parties also use data collected by something called “data cooperatives.” These are companies that compile transaction history data which is shared by retailers and other organizations. Grocery store chains, online retailers, and even charities all share their data, giving these cooperatives insight into every single human being above the age of 18 in North America (we all shop).

There are five companies—Acxiom, Epsilon, etc.—that have all of your individual data on everything you’ve purchased in last five years, together with your name, address, phone number, credit cards, etc. But don’t worry. Unlike Facebook data, this data is anonymized and companies wishing to purchase it can never know exactly who you are. Indeed, the software is written so it’s impossible for the cooperative itself to pull up an individual record, which is one of the terms of the sharing agreement.

A marketing or political campaign uses a combination of opt-in and anonymized data. Typically, they do this by looking at their own opt-in data to find who their best customers or voters are. They then build profiles of them, known as “lookalike models.” They match these models to the cooperative data to find additional people they can target with ads. Because these people have similar purchasing patterns to existing customers, typically they are much more receptive. This is why when you shop at one sporting goods store, a magazine for another shows up on your doorstep. But while the data cooperative will send ads, emails, or whatever to these lists, the company sending them doesn’t know who the targets really are until they make a purchase.

Lookalike models work great in marketing, but aren’t ideal in politics. The weakness is that the RNC can only build Republican lookalike models, and the DNC can only build Democratic lookalike models. So they really can only target people who are likely to vote for them anyway. With 50 million voter profiles, CA could build any models it liked. It could target staunch Republicans, independents, Hillary-hating Democrats, or whatever. Now, we don’t know exactly what CA’s agenda was or who their real paymasters were, but they said they were putting their thumb on the scale for Trump, and if they did, they had a great toolset for doing so (I would think the biggest target of my campaign would be Democrats who disliked Hillary, not rabid Trump supporters).

How does this happen? In 2015, a professor writes an app that a bunch of people opt in to take a personality test. They share data, and through a known weakness in Facebook’s security (it’s actually not a weakness, but how Facebook is built), the professor is then able to harvest those peoples’ friends’ data, their friends’ data, and so on until he has extremely detailed information (i.e. everything you post to Facebook) on 50 million voters. Which he then sells to Cambridge Analytica. And let’s not stop at 50 million. You can also build lookalike profiles and go to a data cooperative and buy lists of the 100 million or so voters you’re missing. So basically, you have the keys to the kingdom.

Don’t worry about anything the RNC says about using CA or the noise about how psychographic profiling works. CA did not need to psychographically profile with the data it had. And it its own agenda, which may not be Trump’s, and it is perfectly capable of running a campaign without the RNC, on behalf of whoever would pay it. What they’re not capable of doing is hiding this from Facebook. In other words, there is little doubt Facebook knew exactly what CA was doing and looked the other way. It only suspended CA when it became impossible to hide it anymore.

But wait a minute, isn’t Facebook run by Silicon Valley liberals? Wouldn’t they put their thumb on the scale for Hillary not Trump? Why wouldn’t Twitter tamp down on all of the fake news and BS we know is running around? For that matter, why the hell don’t they write algorithms that can figure out if pictures of naked children are being shared? That’s pretty damn easy, for what it’s worth.

Because that’s not their agenda. Their agenda is Facebook. It’s Twitter. It has nothing to do with politics and everything to do with getting the broadest and most engaged audience they possibly can. They don’t want to stop entities like Cambridge Analytica. They don’t care about that. They don’t plug holes that enable people to get their hands on your data. They want to keep people online and engaged. It’s not that Facebook is encouraging CA specifically, but they’re making their platform as available and open as they can—to CA or whatever its left-leaning equivalent might be. That’s the agenda. And if someone like CA comes around and steals data, their first priority is to suppress the information, not stop the activity.

Forget the election. This has aided and abetted genocide in Myanmar, ISIS recruitment, and a lot of the Syrian mess. So that’s why I couldn’t really see Silicon Valley types getting behind Fusion One. It’s too small, too long shot, and too establishment, really. Just not their focal point.

The Beaver

@ James

It looks like they've communicated twice during these past 8 days according to this:
https://twitter.com/LucasFoxNews/status/976488862724841472

robt willmann

John Minnerath,

In addition to the common desire of some (or many) human beings to exercise authority over other groups of people, I think Xi Jinping and his supporters want to complete the large and complex economic and financial projects they have started. It is not just the road and railroad and other infrastructure projects tied to the regional trading structure China has been working on, but a financial structure independent of the existing banking and financial system that was put together by the U.S. and Britain.

It is my opinion that China, Russia, Iran, and probably additional countries decided to make a move after the brazen 2003 invasion of Iraq by the U.S. and others, and the massive financial fraud partly exposed in the U.S. and Britain in 2008 and afterwards, which fraud was not stopped and the perpetrators were bailed out and none were prosecuted.

China, Russia, et. al. realized that the debt-saturated U.S. was propped up by the fact that the U.S. "dollar" was the reserve banking and trading currency of the entire world and that the "Petrodollar" was one of the main pillars of it, and that this system was the main source of U.S. influence and power around the world and allowed the U.S. and friends to impose financial sanctions on other countries. They also saw that the U.S. was not using gold or silver as a type of support or backup for the financial system. Therefore, they developed their own computer servers to route orders between banks and financial companies that will operate outside of the SWIFT system dominated by the U.S. It is now operational and is called CIPS (Cross-Border Interbank Payment System)--

http://www.chinadaily.com.cn/business/2015-10/08/content_22127404.htm

https://sputniknews.com/business/201603091036035210-vtb-bank-payment/

In addition, they are moving to break the Petrodollar. In the early 1970's, the U.S. made a non-treaty deal with Saudi Arabia that if they got the rest of OPEC to sell oil and gas to the whole world only in U.S. dollars and would plough some of the money back into U.S. government debt and into the stock market casino, the U.S. would protect the Saudi ruling family so it could run the entire country as its private business. This forced the whole world to get U.S. dollars in order to buy oil and gas, which further put the dollar in as banking reserves around the world, which further pushed the dollar into being used to settle much of the trade between countries.

However, now some contracts are being made to buy and sell oil and gas not in the U.S. dollar, but in other currencies, especially the Chinese renminbi (a/k/a yuan). Also, both China and Russia have been buying large amounts of gold for several years. To get around some of the U.S. sanctions prior to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), Iran sold oil and gas in exchange for gold. Since gold is not a government created and ordered "fiat" money, it cannot be choked off by the SWIFT system or controlled through numbers on computer hard drives in banks.

Russia also remembers what happened after the collapse of the Soviet Union when the U.S. financial "experts" [sic] went there to set up a "wonderful" market-based economy, but what happened of course was the creation of a system to loot Mother Russia and establish a new oligarchy tied in with the U.S., Britain, and Israel.

In the early 1990's when the Soviet Union pulled out of eastern Europe, the U.S. had a chance to help the world be a safer and more peaceful place. The methods of medical diagnosis and surgical technology developed in the U.S. could have been the basis of a new foreign policy that would have voluntarily opened doors across the world.

But it was not to be. The desire of some to be king of the world pushed the chance of improvement aside. Nevertheless, today even autocratic governments see that having financial and governmental options can be a beneficial thing.

And to our immediate south, a movement has been going on for a while in Mexico to establish a money based on silver, promoted by Hugo Salinas Price and others--

http://www.plata.com.mx/enUS/More/322?idioma=2

For obvious reasons, I am not optimistic about Mexico, the deterioration of which has been a sad thing to see. It needs a new and real revolution.

Xi's move is not a unilateral thing. He had to have the support of the ruling committees in China. Keep your eye on the financial structure, gold, and silver.

turcopolier

All

David Habakkuk is researching and writing a comprehensive piece on the Skripal Affair for SST. pl

Kooshy

Could it be, because of elections?, diversity of opinions and the disunity that forms during elections is not recomended, or good during existential wars, specially major power wars, US/west have shown they use elections for color revolution regime changes. Was this a remedy to preempt predicting a possible war? And or a signal by China?

ex-PFC Chuck

@ 8
Yesterday Murray put up a post about the attempts at gas lighting thrown his way by the upholders of the Evil Putin Did It narrative, as well as trying to shame him for his past candor about his bipolar disorder.
https://www.craigmurray.org.uk/archives/2018/03/on-being-a-dissenting-voice-in-2018/comment-page-6/

Kooshy

Thank you well put.

divadab

Replying to the comments relating to Chinese President Xi Jinping:

Here is a rather good article about Xi's background and the very formative hard time he had as a young man during the cultural revolution.

http://www.unz.com/article/chinese-president-xi-jinping-who-is-he/?highlight=cultural+revolution

b

There is (at least) one connecting element between the "moderate Takfiris" in Syria and the Skripal incident (which certainly was not "Russian" and may not have been a nerve agent at all.)

Colonel (rtd) Hamish de Bretton-Gordon "is a former assistant director of Intelligence Surveillance and Reconnaissance Land Forces with the Ministry of Defence. Before that de Bretton-Gordon was commanding officer of Britain’s Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear (CBRN) Regiment and Nato’s Rapid Reaction CBRN Battalion."

He is a Tory, anti-Russian and the British press quotes him every day. He is essentially building the story.

He was/is deeply involved in training the Takfiris in Syria in chemical warfare. Alleged evidence of Syrian chemical weapons was "smuggled out" with his help and he had it analyzed with the wished for result. He co-founded "Doctors Under Fire" which works along the White Helmets scam which was founded by another British military intelligence officer.

De Bretton-Gordon is also managing director CBRN of Avon Protection Systems, based in Melksham, Wiltshire and is making millions from selling CBRN equipment to the Pentagon and the British forces. (I bet that the gas masks the Takfiris have and the CBRN equipment the White Helmets show off come from this source.)

If there was coordination in staging a chemical attack in Salisbury (right next door to Porton Down to which de Bretton-Gordon surely still has the keys) and in Ghouta it will have been this man.

This increases, in my view, the plausibility of the Voltairnet story.

I have written quite a lot on the Skripal incident on my site. De Bretton-Gordon appears in today's piece.

Imagine

Because we all know the State Dept. is expert in hiring and directing jihadis to do dirty work. Thank heaven the CIA saved us!

...The whole thing smells like a dead fish.

The part about Porton Down getting creative with sarin samples' chain of custody has been alleged before, and I suppose State could have asked Britain to use its mercs to pull off an event.

However, since Sy Hersh points out embedded people were explicitly warned about the Apr '17 conventional attack ahead of time for their own safety (and the Syria plane cleared its mission with the Deconflict folks, and knew all along it was being tracked), the likelihood that a different group pulled the current sandbagging job must be considered.

So, fair question: Does State have its own intel / black operations team? Thought it was a consumer not producer.

VietnamVet

Shepard
@14


“Russia did it” is a meme designed to scapegoat Russia to cover the Democrat’s Asses for losing the 2016 election, and to enable continuation of the Forever Wars since the fall of Raqqa.


Facebook user data was fed into the analytics system that enabled Cambridge Analytica and the Trump campaign to effectively target voters at a minimal budget. They won Donald Trump the swing states and the election.

It wasn’t the Russians, it was our own social media companies who sold user data to the Trump campaign which convinced liberals not to vote in swing states.

https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2018-03-21/it-wasnt-russia-it-was-obama-based-social-media-mining-beat-hillary

mikee

In my humble opinion Mr. Meyssan is a whackjob.

JamesT

Terry

I've been thinking about this as well. I went looking for a graph of median income in China and the US over the last 20 years ... and could not find one. What I would really like to see is a graph of median income increases over the last 20 years - I would argue this is more relevant than the easy to find graphs of GDP increases.

Median income in Russia increased something like 270% in inflation adjusted terms during the first 10 years that Putin was in power. The Economist claims this was solely due to the increase in oil prices. I went looking at countries that had comparable oil-production-per-person and found that Canada (whose oil production per person is essentially identical to Russia) saw its median income increase only 9% in the same period.

This isn't to say that Putin's leadership is necessarily good in the long term, but the western press are clearly ignoring important economic statistics regarding both China and Russia.

English Outsider

Might I ask about this sentence towards the end of your informative account:-

"This has aided and abetted genocide in Myanmar, ISIS recruitment, and a lot of the Syrian mess."

Does this also refer to Dabiq? It looked professionally produced. Who managed that? Did whoever put it out use their intuition as to what would appeal to young men, or was there any data analysis in behind it?

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