Friday, June 22, 2018

Lost In Transition

Asking Questions,​

There is something particularly disturbing about the minuscule amount of footage recently released by HHS last week—it only shows boys, and only boys age 10 and up. Where are the girls? Where are the toddlers? Where are the babies? According to official policy, the government does not remove toddlers and babies from their mothers. However, as TFTP reported, a mother from Honduras who came to the U.S. seeking asylum with her family said she was breastfeeding her infant at a detention center when her baby was suddenly taken from her with no warning and no explanation.
Now, the question of “where are the girls?” has become such an issue that it made its way to the White House and a reporter asked Department of Homeland Security Chief Kirstjen Nielsen.
Monday afternoon, during a White House press briefing, a reporter asked,
“Why is the government only releasing images of the boys being held? Where are the girls & toddlers?”
Nielsen could not answer.
​These children are being used as pawns in a political game as rivals bicker over how to handle them while ignoring real factors that would curb this massive immigration problem.Many Americans have been taught to dehumanize these refugees and to believe that it is not our problem. However, these refugees are a direct result of decades-old US policy.
In the heart-wrenching video above, one of the girls claims to be from Honduras. Honduras is currently a crime-ridden hell hole rife with gang violence as coca plantations thrive—all thanks to the war on drugs. https://www.globalresearch.ca/where-are-the-girls-child-trafficking-feared-as-dhs-cant-say-where-immigrant-girls-are-being-held/5644869

​Explaining the details of Trump's executive order to stop breaking up refugee families at the border. It says nothing about rejoining families, already separated. It is clearly meant to diffuse the bad press, so stop paying attention!

Wigs sends this piece by Diana Johnstone, loking at stances towards immigration, and what creates the two camps, for and against. Ms Johnstone does not look at the wars of imperial convenience that are the root cause, but at German responses to this "given".
Finally, it depends on whether you think of immigrants as individuals or as a mass. Concerning individuals, compassion reigns. You want to get to know that person, make a friend, help a fellow human being. As a mass, it is different because you have to think also of social results and you do not know whom you are getting.

How could there be a conscientious objector graduating from West Point? There just was, Spencer Rapone. Thanks Ray.
“I consider myself a revolutionary socialist,” the 26-year-old said. “I would encourage all soldiers who have a conscience to lay down their arms and join me and so many others who are willing to stop serving the agents of imperialism and join us in a revolutionary movement.”
Rapone said his journey to communism grew out of his experiences as an army ranger in Afghanistan before he was accepted into the US Military Academy. And those views only hardened during his studies of history as one of the academy’s “Long Gray Line”.
Spenser Rapone raises his left fist while displaying a sign inside his hat after graduating from the United States Military Academy at West Point.


It's ALL about money in the Democratic Party. That's not a bug, it's a feature. Change? No, we're only taking $1000 bills today. You, re not a candidate, Bye, now!
But Clegg didn't get to pledge the DCCC frat, and the reason is obvious: funding. If you don't come in the door with your pockets full, your only other way in, almost regardless of policy or background, is to prove you can bring in ass-loads of outside cash.​ ​
"That's what they tell you – that you need money to win, that it's all about the money," Clegg says.

​There are large strategic deposits of rare earth minerals in North Korea. Most of the rest are in China. What's a fading global empire to do?

About those pipelines, and railroads to link North and South Korea, and Russia...

The main issue about the "freeze for freeze" suggested by Russia and china, and now endorsed-without-attribution by the US is verifiability. that will take a global change, because in this world, the US is unaccountable and does not keep agreements.
“It is difficult to imagine what kind of security guarantee the United States can offer that could be trusted. A piece of paper is not going to do it. Nor, on its own, is the signing of a peace treaty formally ending the Korean War,” Elich said. “It may be that the Trump administration would be sincere in signing such a document. But the next US administration may very well have no compunction in abandoning it.” 
https://www.rt.com/news/430265-us-korea-double-freeze-experts/

​Eleni found this, which may have the answer...
One additional clue is that Henry Kissinger is said to be in Moscow right now, and Henry has been an adviser to Trump on policy to Russia ever since the 2016 campaign. He has been the voice urging an accommodation with Russia for a variety of geopolitical strategic reasons.  KA-CHING!  Putin needs to help on the Korean Peninsula, not just Xi.
https://russia-insider.com/en/politics/signs-are-clear-trump-putin-summit-being-prepared-possibly-2nd-week-july/ri23824?ct=t(Russia_Insider_Daily_Headlines11_21_2014)&mc_cid=7abaab8d3e&mc_eid=7a06d680cf 

​Cutting Deals​

Tuesday, June 19, 2018

The Other Shoe

Apprehensive,

Moon of Alabama, Syrian war update:  There are signs that the long expected liberation of the Daraa region in southwest Syria is about to begin. After a month of negotiations between Russia, Israel, Jordan and the U.S. no peaceful solution has been found. The various terrorist forces in the (green) area, including al-Qaeda aligned HTS and groups loyal to the Islamic State, have rejected all negotiations. For over a month Russian negotiators tried to convince locals to give up and to reconcile with the government. But the hardliners under the rebels have killed anyone who talked with the Russians. The U.S. government has warned against a Daraa operation and threatened to intervene...  The Russian military is warning of a false-flag "chemical incident" in Deir Ezzor governorate. The Syrian Observatory reports that Islamic State remnants in the southeastern desert and in the Rukban camp, both under cover of the U.S. occupied zone around al-Tanf, prepare for a large attack on Syrian government forces. It claims that such an attack is an attempt to occupy the zone between al-Tanf and Albu Kamal at the Euphrates. Both operation would be planned diversions intended to draw Syrian forces away from Deraa and could provide excuses for U.S. intervention on the opposition side... 

Caitlin Johnstone: ​
Rumors are again swirling of an impending false flag chemical weapons attack in Syria, just as they did shortly before the highly suspicious Douma case in April. Warnings from Syrian and Russian intelligence, as well as US war ship movements and an uptick in US funding for the Al Qaeda propaganda firm known as the White Helmets, give these warnings a fair bit of weight.
https://medium.com/@caityjohnstone/its-time-to-start-getting-enraged-at-what-western-imperialists-have-done-to-syria-a53529c7c0e7

The European Union is funding a project to prosecute Israel Defence Forces (IDF) officers for committing violations against Palestinian civilians, according to Israel Hayom, which quotes a local human rights organisation.

Civilians are fleeing Hodeidah after hundreds were killed in the Saudi-led coalition’s bomb campaign to take the strategic Yemeni port from Houthi rebels. The death toll and the disruption of vital supply lines has alarmed the UN.
Saudi Arabia will be lonely on the UN Human Rights Council, without the Americans.
​ Nikki Haley's statement below:​

“Earlier this year, as it has in previous years, the Human Rights Council passed five resolutions against Israel — more than the number passed against North Korea, Iran and Syria combined,” Nikki R. Haley, the American ambassador to the United Nations, said in a speech on Tuesday.
“This disproportionate focus and unending hostility toward Israel is clear proof that the council is motivated by political bias, not by human rights.”
“If the Human Rights Council is going to attack countries that uphold human rights and shield countries that abuse human rights, then America should not provide it with any credibility,” Ms. Haley said.
​This has nothing to do with leaving the Human Rights Council. This is imperial business as usual: 
 ​
The much-discussed report entitled "'War of annihilation': Devastating Toll on Civilians, Raqqa - Syria" revealed the US-led coalition launched "disproportionate or indiscriminate" attacks on buildings full of entrapped civilians "using wide-area effect munitions." The human rights watchdog raised the question whether the coalition conducted "rigorous surveillance prior to the strikes."
"I don't understand why they bombed us... Didn't the surveillance planes see that we were civilian families?" asked Rasha Badran, an air strikes survivor, whose 39 family members including a one-year-old girl named Tulip were killed in three separate US coalition strikes.

​Wars drive injured humans to desperate journeys far away. The US has long had secret wars and secret criminal allies in Central America. That is where the hot flow of traumatized families is coming from. The American Academy of Pediatrics: ​ 
In the dramatic increase in arrivals that began in 2014 and continues at the time of writing thispolicy statement, more than 95% of undocumented children have emigrated from Guatemala, Honduras, and El Salvador (the Northern Triangle countries of Central America), with much smaller numbers from Mexico and other countries. Most of these undocumented children cross into the United States through the southern border.2 Unprecedented violence, abject poverty, and lack of state protection of children and families in Central America are driving an escalation of migration to the United States from Guatemala, Honduras, and El Salvador.

I can only find stories about this Wal-Mart in Brownsville, where they hold 1500 boys. This is the least horrible detention center, I guess, what they are giving tours of. Up the road from us in Hutto there is something for families where they separate parents and children at night in locked cells. No pictures. The internet is not being fed factual information on this, mainly commentary. My understanding is that thousands of children have been lost to tracking, too.

Moon of Alabama notices that every time the US runs a "counter drug" program, that drugs increase dramatically. (The programs might just limit attacks to the CIA's competition. Manuel Noriega used to do business with the CIA drug runners, but later he became more useful as a target for invasion.)

This is another story about what Bernie Sanders was doing in the 1960s, while Hillary Clinton was campaigning for Barry Goldwater. (That's Bernie, chained to some black ladies,  getting arrested in Chicago.)

Tom Luongo has an article about tipping points in societal perception and orientation. Bernie Sanders was involved in that process, above. First come the innovators. They are a couple of percent, then the early adopters, which brings the new-view up to 16%, but the next leap is hard to bridge, because the 'early majority" folks are far more socially cautious, and need to feel like they are part of a big, coherent group. Tom looks at immigration as a core, deep-brain, group identity issue, and how that is working in German politics now. Merkel may not be able to hold a "center" that lets in a flood of people who will never act like Germans, and will never want to. (This is a case in point, but the principle is really important as we all move to some, yet unseen, new understandings.

The amount of ocean rise from antarctic ice melt has tripled over the last 5 years, and is accelerating.
Inexorably Changing

Monday, June 18, 2018

Doing No Harm

Observing Trends,

At a graduation ceremony for the US Naval War College (barf), US Secretary of Defense James Mattis asserted that Russian President Vladimir Putin “aims to diminish the appeal of the western democratic model and attempts to undermine America’s moral authority,” and that “his actions are designed not to challenge our arms at this point but to undercut and compromise our belief in our ideals.” (He implies an adjustment of imperial strategy is in order, perhaps?) This would be the same James Mattis who’s been overseeing the war crimes committed by America’s armed forces during their illegal occupation of Syria. This would be the same United States of America that was born of the genocide of indigenous tribes and the labor of African slaves, which slaughtered millions in Korea, Vietnam, Cambodia, Iraq, Libya and Syria for no legitimate reason, which is partnered with Ukrainian Nazis, jihadist factions in Syria and Iranian terror cultists, which supports 73 percent of the world’s dictators, which interferes constantly in the electoral processesof other countries as a matter of policy, which stages coups around the world, which has encircled the globe with military bases, whose FBI still targets black civil rights activists for persecution to this very day, which routinely enters into undeclared wars of aggression against noncompliant governments to advance plutocratic interests, which remains the only country ever to use nuclear weapons on human beings after doing so completely needlessly in Japan, and which is functionally a corporatist oligarchy with no meaningful “democratic model” in place at all. ... When Mattis says that the Russian government is trying to “undercut and compromise our belief in our ideals,” he is saying that Moscow is interrupting the lies that Americans are being told about their government by the plutocrat-owned media. https://caitlinjohnstone.com/2018/06/17/mattis-putin-is-trying-to-undermine-americas-moral-authority/

Russia is warning (again) that the US is planning false flag chemical attacks in Syria (again) to justify attacking Syrian government forces (again) who are soon to start operations to clear out whatever renamed terrorist mercenaries fail to make a deal to leave without their guns. https://www.mintpressnews.com/russian-syrian-warnings-of-a-coming-false-flag-chemical-attack-have-ring-of-truth/244137/

The US Army plans to deploy autonomous killer robots in battle areas by 2028. ("Coming soon to your neighborhood") There are some things that some soldiers just won't do... right? https://www.activistpost.com/2018/06/what-could-go-wrong-u-s-army-planning-to-deploy-autonomous-killer-robots-on-battlefield-by-2028.html

WASHINGTON, June 16. /TASS/. US President Donald Trump is expected to hold a meeting with Russian leader Vladimir Putin in Europe in July. (It's about time they got to talk about things.)
http://tass.com/world/1009827

"The Saudi-UAE Alliance is the Most Dangerous Force in the Middle East Today (except for the US-Israel Alliance, of course). This looks at the genocide in Yemen, now going into total-war summer offensive, as the US "helps". Look; genocide is the historical trend again... http://www.theamericanconservative.com/articles/the-saudi-uae-alliance-is-the-most-dangerous-force-in-the-middle-east-today/

There are about 1000 separations of children from their parents at the US-Mexican border every month. Actually, this is not new, but the press kept quiet about ut under nice President Obama, so as not to offend. The reason for this is that criminal-charges are being filed against parents, and children automatically get taken to abandoned Wal-Marts whenever criminal charges are filed. (yeah, feels genocidal,,,) https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-immigration-children/u-s-government-says-nearly-2000-child-separations-at-mexico-border-in-under-two-months-idUSKBN1JB2SF

French police cut the soles off refugee children's shoes and torment them as they drive them away, so they won't ever come back. https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/jun/14/french-border-police-accused-of-cutting-soles-off-migrant-childrens-shoes

"America's Greatest Crisis is Upon Us, Debt to GDP Makes it Clear" ... (I say it is arguably worse, since current measures of GDP actually include debt as a positive in the financial category of GDP, the only part getting bigger. Thanks Charles.) Since 2001, according to debt to GDP, the US has been in the longest ongoing crisis in the nations history. https://econimica.blogspot.com/2018/06/americas-greatest-crisis-upon-usdebt-to.html


British Bicycling Business is several times larger than the British Steel Industry, so where is the industrial policy to support this business, which has positive economic and environmental multipliers? More thanks, Charles. https://www.theguardian.com/environment/bike-blog/2018/jun/16/uk-cycling-steel-industry-strategy

A cataclysmic decline in insects is taking place, virtually unnoticed. Bruce Munro talks to renowned entomologist Anthony Harris about love, loss and the impending Sixth Mass Extinction, which could wipe land-based life from the globe...
More than 80% of this (biomass), 452.5Gt C, is plants. Next comes bacteria (16%, 87.2Gt C) and fungi (2%, 10.9 Gt C). Animals make up just 0.4% of the total biomass. The globe's 7.6 billion people account for just 0.01% of all living things.
And yet our impact on the globe has been enormous - some would say catastrophic.
According to the Proceedings article, humans are responsible for the possibly irreparable loss of large chunks of the animal and plant kingdoms; more than 80% of all wild animals and half of all plants.
Anthony Harris finds it deeply disturbing.
"Farmed poultry now makes up 70% of all birds on the planet, with just 30% wild,'' he says with a shocked tone.
"The picture for mammals is worse. Sixty percent of all mammals on earth are livestock, mostly cattle and pigs, 36% are humans and just 4% of all mammals are wild.''
It is no wonder insects are dying out, he says.
Industrialised farming is one of the main causes.
McCarthy, who noted the decline of moths, writing in October about the dramatic drop in flying insects numbers in Germany, stated, "It seems indisputable: it is us''.
"It is human activity - more specifically, three generations of industrialised farming with a vast tide of poisons pouring over the land year after year after year, since the end of the second world war.
"This is the true price of pesticide-based agriculture, which society has for so long blithely accepted.''
https://www.odt.co.nz/lifestyle/magazine/losing-buzz

Supporting Insect Habitat


Saturday, June 16, 2018

Peace Dividends

Blessed Peacemakers,

Moon of Alabama has the back story about secret negotiations between China, North and South Korea, and the US, for over a year. This casts events in a different light, in my opinion. Trump's dramatic statements, provocative of war, made most of the world cringe and ant peace, which is what was being plotted. It seems that there had to be a lot of drama before the US could accept the freeze-for-freeze proposal that North Korea presented to Obama in 2015. The Spring and fall war games between the US and South Korea were timed to starve North Korea by disrupting rice planting and harvesting. Those 1.2 million North Korean reservists are most of the farmers in the impoverished country. The war games are an act of war. The North Korean TV documentary of Kim's summit trip is very engaging, and I don't understand Korean, but I get the gist, anyway. the last 2 minutes is pretty heart rending. The outpouring of gratitude and relief upon his return appears wholehearted and completely real, person after person after person. This is the view from inside North Korea. It's a thing. They can work on feeding people and improving their economy now. North and South Korean economic levels were very similar until the collapse of the Soviet Union. this country has had it's collapse, and dearly desires a recovery. (The picture of a beaming Kim, triumphantly shaking hands with his nemesis, John Bolton, is quite nice, too.)


By reaffirming the Panmunjom Declaration, the US President has committed to bringing its military back from South Korea and thus a complete denuclearization of the South as well as the North...
The Singapore joint statement is not a deal; it’s a statement. The absolutely key item is number 3: “Reaffirming the April 27, 2018, Panmunjom Declaration, the DPRK commits to work toward the complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula.”... This means that the US and North Korea will work towards denuclearization not only in what concerns the DPRK but the whole Korean Peninsula. ... Predictably, both US neocon and humanitarian imperialist factions are unanimous in their fury, blasting the absence of “meat” in the joint statement. In fact there’s plenty of meat. Singapore reaffirms the Panmunjom Declaration, which is a deal between North Korea and South Korea... By signing the Singapore joint statement, Washington has been put on notice of the Panmunjom Declaration. In law, when you take notice of a fact, you can’t ignore it later. The DPRK’s commitment to denuclearize in the Singapore statement is a reaffirmation of its commitment to denuclearize in the Panmunjom Declaration, with all of the conditions attached to it. And Trump acknowledged that by signing the Singapore statement.
http://www.atimes.com/article/the-key-word-in-the-trump-kim-show/

"John F. Kennedy and The Question of World Peace", is another article about his American University Speech, the best argument for peace in our time by any American president that I know of. There is lots of context about how it was taken in the USSR. WE know how it went down in the American halls of power. Kennedy sprung this political ambush on the Pentagon, and the rest of the Military Industrial Complex, took it straight to the people and the world. He got the Nuclear Test  Ban Treaty in the remaining months of his life, the first step into a better world that was prevented in November, when America died.

The Real Economic Numbers: 21.5% Unemployment, 10 Percent Inflation, and "Negative Economic Growth" (aka, "contraction", "depression", etc.)

Well, this is about to change everything... "The grain-growing region in the High Plains of America—known as America’s breadbasket—relies entirely on the Ogallala Aquifer. But long term unsustainable use of the aquifer is forcing states in the region to face the prospect of a regional economic disaster. As the High Plains states reach the verge of a major crisis, the states have taken different approaches to conservation with varying results.
The Ogallala Aquifer supports an astounding one-sixth of the world’s grain produce, and it has long been an essential component of American agriculture. The High Plains region—where the aquifer lies—relies on the aquifer for residential and industrial uses, but the aquifer’s water is used primarily for agricultural irrigation. The agricultural demands for Ogallala water in the region are immense, with the aquifer ultimately being responsible for thirty percent of all irrigation in the United States. The Ogallala Aquifer has long been unable to keep up with these agricultural demands, as the aquifer recharges far slower than water is withdrawn... In northwest Texas, so much water has been pumped and so little recharged that irrigation has largely depleted the aquifer in the area. "

John Barleycorn

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Our Roles

Confined to Stall,

Your Role As A Milk Cow (A clarification for beginners looks at how inflation is used to manipulate perceptions and economic behaviors. Compound interest, the financial capitalist's tour de force is not expounded upon.) 
https://internationalman.com/articles/inflation-your-role-as-a-milk-cow/

Twelve Tips for Making Sense of the World":
Caitlin Johnstone is speaking in tongues of the Holy Ghost here!
https://medium.com/@caityjohnstone/twelve-tips-for-making-sense-of-the-world-43348077cf80
1. It’s always ultimately about acquiring power.
2. Money rewards sociopathy.
3. Wealth kills empathy.
4. Money is power.
5. This same ruling class controls the media.
6. People are always manipulating each other.
7. Society is made of narrative.
8. The lines between nations are imaginary.
9. Powerful forces are naturally incentivized to collaborate with each other toward mutual interests.
10. There is an immense amount of wealth that can be grabbed in the chaos of war and conflict.
11. The neocons are always wrong.
12. The push towards truth always starts with yourself.

​More Caitlin: ​ “President Trump seems to have given away two or three of the major things that Kim Jong-Un wanted,” Schumer complained at the aforementioned press conference. “A meeting. The flags next to each other. Now a delay of exercises with South Korea, without getting anything in return.” Huh? A meeting? Flags next to each other? ...

​The body language of the Trump-Kim Summit is analyzed here:
“Whenever they’re shaking hands, you can see the whites of their fingertips - these two guys are alpha males,” Leong said.
“They both want to show dominance and that is why there’s this bone-crushing handshake.”
However, Leong said both found it difficult to conceal their nervousness once they were seated, with Trump displaying a slanted smile, and fidgeting with his hands and Kim leaning and staring at the ground.

Yanis Varoufakis analyzes the Trumpian objectives at the recent G(7-1) Meeting in Northern, North America:
​"​
Trump takes one look at all this and concludes that, if the US can no longer stabilise global capitalism, he might as well blow up existing multilateral conventions and build from scratch a new global order resembling a wheel, with America its hub and all other powers its spokes – an arrangement of bilateral deals that ensures the US will always be the largest partner in each, and thus be able to exact a pound of flesh through divide and rule tactics.
​"​

In Germany, the influence of the automobile industry over the government is legendary. What isn’t are the relatively high tariffs American manufacturers face when exporting to Europe and the low tariffs America itself imposes on automobile imports. What is also ironic is that modern-day protectionism didn’t start with Trump. Barriers against global trade increased between 2009 and 2016. The World Trade Organization warned, year after year, since 2010, about the increase in protectionism. The Obama administration, faced with the exponential increase in its trade deficit, was the one that introduced the highest number of protectionist measures between 2009 and 2016. The only difference between Trump and Obama was that Obama didn’t publicize this much and the mainstream media didn’t complain.  (So Trump called everybody else's hand at the G-7. Trade war.)

Nafta provides a perfect illustration of why all trade treaties should contain a sunset clause. Provisions that made sense to the negotiators in the early 1990s make no sense to anyone today, except fossil fuel companies and greedy lawyers...  Under Nafta, these provisions have become, metaphorically and literally, toxic. When Canada tried to ban a fuel additive called MMT as a potentially dangerous neurotoxin, the US manufacturer used Nafta rules to sue the government. Canada was forced to lift the ban, and award the company $13m (£10m) in compensation. ...  As the US justice department woke up to the implications of these rules in the 1990s, it began to panic: one official wrote that it “could severely undermine our system of justice” and grant foreign companies “more rights than Americans have” ...  The Canadian government cannot adhere to both its commitments under the Paris agreement on climate change and its commitments under Nafta. While the Paris commitments are voluntary, Nafta’s are compulsory...  Trump was right to spike the Trans-Pacific Partnership. He is right to demand a sunset clause for Nafta. When this devious, hollow, self-interested man offers a better approximation of the people’s champion than any other leader, you know democracy is in trouble.


Unless the European Banking System goes through major adjustment, which is not politically possible (yet) the Eurozone must break up. All the money keeps moving in the same direction, with no way to complete a loop. Germany backs all the debt of southern Europe, and it gets more and more and more.

Russia can finally run a gas pipeline through North Korea, to South Korea, and possibly over to Japan from there, with all parties "winning".
The peace talks, if successful, could revive talks about an onshore gas pipeline, with a capacity of up to 10 Bcm/year via North Korea to the south of the peninsula, which was shelved in 2012 on major political risks. Russia's Gazprom and state-owned South Korean Gas Corp., or Kogas, first agreed to a 30-year supply of up to 10 Bcm/year of Russian gas in 2008, with startup initially marked for 2015 and then delayed to 2017.

Chinese Government mouthpiece, Xinhua says this (mastery of the art of understatement):
A pressing issue to be addressed at the moment is to translate the current hard-earned detente into a long-lasting peace on the Korean Peninsula by properly accommodating concerns of all parties.
To that end, the "dual-track" approach advocated by China, which seeks denuclearization alongside establishing a peace regime on the peninsula, has proven to be a practical and reasonable solution.

It's still hotly debated what "ending expensive war games in South Korea" will mean in practice, but professionals in government say that it will probably just be those big scary massed troop movements with nuclear bombers, that pretend to destroy North Korea, that will be sidelined, not routine training.

Clarified:  WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Donald Trump said on Tuesday the United States will not hold war games with South Korea while North Korea negotiates in good faith on denuclearization.

Trying to nail down exactly what Trump said again...  The report from the Korean Central News Agency, which was published after Kim returned home from his meeting, noted Trump’s vow to suspend U.S. military drills in South Korea. It also said Trump committed to unspecified “security guarantees” for Pyongyang, and to “lift sanctions against it.” ...  Trump himself indicated some wiggle room, saying sanctions relief could come even before the “complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula” -- however that’s ultimately defined by both sides -- is verified. “I hope it’s going to be soon,” he said Tuesday at an hour-long briefing. “At a certain point, I actually look forward to taking them off.” ...  Trump faces Japanese pressure to keep sanctions in place, and a push by China to lift them. A Chinese official already signaled the country may ask the United Nations to lift or adjust the penalties, the basis for the “maximum pressure” campaign Trump has used to push Kim toward disarmament. China, as North Korea’s neighbor and most important trading partner, also could provide relief to Kim by throttling down sanctions enforcement on its own.

The genocide in Yemen steps up, now that it is summer, the time of maximum stress on human bodies. There is famine from the blockade of all food from the port of Hudaydah, the only port to supply food and medicine to people who got 90% of their food through that channel before. The UAE just got the green light from the US to attack and wipe out these starving people with cholera, diptheria, and contaminated water this summer, over a million people...
Saudis see the Zaidiya (Islamic sect) as an impediment of their influence in Yemen. They want to control the Yemeni government. The Emirates want to control the port of Aden and Yemen's oil and gas loading facilities. The Obama administration supported the Saudi onslaught on Yemen to buy Saudi acquiescence with the nuclear deal with Iran. The Trump administration supports the Saudi/UAE war out of lack of knowledge. It has fallen for the Iran myth. It also wants to sell more weapons.

This year’s Bilderberg summit is a council of war. On the agenda: Russia and Iran. In the conference room: the secretary general of Nato, the German defence minister, and the director of the French foreign intelligence service, DGSE...  The clearest indication that some sort of US-led conflict is on the cards is the presence of the Pentagon’s top war-gamer, James H Baker. He is an expert in military trends, and no trend is more trendy in the world of battle strategy than artificial intelligence. Bilderberg is devoting a whole session to AI this year – and has invited military theorist Michael C Horowitz, who has written extensively on its likely impact on the future of war. Horowitz sees AI as “the ultimate enabler”. In an article published just a few weeks ago in the Texas National Security Review, he quotes Putin’s remark from 2017: “Artificial intelligence is the future, not only for Russia, but for all humankind. Whoever becomes the leader in this sphere will become the ruler of the world.” Horowitz says “China, Russia, and others are investing significantly in AI to increase their relative military capabilities”, because it offers “the ability to disrupt US military superiority”. Global military domination is suddenly up for grabs.

Let me point out that using Artificial Intelligence to destroy enough of the people, cities, factories and ecosystem of the world, to declare "victory" is NOT INTELLIGENT, so there are inherent limits to how powerful such programming can be. Also, it has to be completely controlled by the programmers, not self-teaching, because self-teaching things reach their own logical conclusions, which is not what the ruling elites are buying this summer, or ever.
The real promise of Artificial Intelligence is realized when it solves a problem with autonomy. This is illustrated by the Program AlphaGo Zero, the most expert player of the ancient Chinese game of strategy, Go. An earlier computer program was taught to beat the best human masters of the game, but AlphaGo Zero was only programmed with the rules of the game, and a description of what winning was, and began playing itself games. It became better and better as it played, and developed deep and elegant strategies which are not understood, even with watching them. It cannot "explain" what it does. It does it faster, with far fewer internal processing steps, having had no teacher. Our intelligence is sort of a useful byproduct of being a social animal species with thumbs, that was able to adapt to a wide variety of habitats, using fire, speech, and other tools, to enable procreation and biological survival.

"Last Exit to The Road Less Traveled" looks at the inevitability of total destruction of all local ecosystems which are touched by global financial-capitalism. It is impossible to compete against. It is so efficient at bringing everything to "market" at the lowest price, that everything in any one ecosystem goes away to market, and the system is subsumed, wholly consumed, and becomes a memory. This is the form of intelligence of the capitalist model, now approaching it's ultimate victory.

I wonder if Artificial Intelligence could be used in a global forum, to devise economic relations that would meet all common needs of living creatures, and gradually restore living, complex ecosystems over time. It would need to be a "fair-broker" to all life forms, while not posing a "threat" to the life forms calling the shots (see Bilderbergers above). They would need to be desperate enough, to give up selfish hopes of winning, or maybe they could just be outsmarted...

Fellow Traveler