Majorityrights Central > Category: Humour

US Government to build American ‘competitiveness’ atop socio-economic retrogression and misery.

Posted by Kumiko Oumae on Sunday, 12 March 2017 01:52.

Zebra Crossing Aesthetic v2

Before you complain

An American once said to me that whenever they see me post an article about the United States now, they just have to brace for a total assault on their morale, and that “it is almost like seeing something like Tokyo Rose’s work in written form.”

I don’t know whether to take that as a compliment or not, since despite her best propaganda efforts, Iva Toguri D’Aquino was ultimately not able to convince the Americans to stop supporting the United States. Perhaps some of the Americans did have pause though, perhaps they did think occasionally, “You know, those things that Tokyo Rose is saying on the radio, could there be something to all that?

But really, it’s not like I have to go out of my way to come up with these socio-economic angles against the ‘Make America Great Again’ concept. They present themselves to the world daily in such a high volume that it’s almost like trying to catch a cup of water from a firehose of negative developments. One has to be very selective about which part of the non-stop blast of negative news one is going to select, interpret, and develop a piece on, on any given day.

Today’s selection is going to really induce a feeling like when you’re sparring with someone and they forget to hold back, and next thing you know their foot is trying to tickle your kidneys or something, and it’s just like, “Oh wow, this pain is real.” It’s pretty bad. I apologise for the pain that you’re going to feel in advance.

True to the tradition I’ll get things started by putting the music on.

How things reached this stage

When Donald Trump was inaugurated on an overcast day about two months ago, he stood in front of the lectern and in a stern voice spoke the words that initiated a miserable new trade war:

TIME, ‘Trump Inauguration: Transcript of Donald Trump Speech’, 20 Jan 2017 (emphasis added):

We assembled here today are issuing a new decree to be heard in every city, in every foreign capital, and in every hall of power. From this day forward, a new vision will govern our land. From this day forward, it’s going to be only America first, America first.

Every decision on trade, on taxes, on immigration, on foreign affairs will be made to benefit American workers and American families. We must protect our borders from the ravages of other countries making our products, stealing our companies and destroying our jobs.

Protection will lead to great prosperity and strength. I will fight for you with every breath in my body and I will never ever let you down.

America will start winning again, winning like never before.

We will bring back our jobs. We will bring back our borders. We will bring back our wealth. And we will bring back our dreams.

It may seem on the face of it that Donald Trump was saying that all the decisions he would make would be based on whether they will benefit American workers and American families. His mouth said that somewhere in there, but is that what protectionism actually does in the longrun?

We know that it does not benefit ‘workers and families’ in the longrun. 

There is widely understood empirical evidence which shows that in the present era, free trade is what benefits the broad mass of the people, not protectionism. Free trade is what enables wider access to products at a cheaper price. Free trade enables this indirectly by facilitating regional division and specialisation of production to enhance productivity on a planetary basis. 

Broadly speaking, tariff and non-barrier barriers are mostly retrogressive, as it is low income consumers who spend a greater percentage of their income on food, clothing, consumer electronics and vehicles, which tend to be most highly protected under the kind of tariff regime proposed by Donald Trump’s White House and supported by his Alt-Lite and Alt-Right supporters.

So if American ‘workers and families’ do not really stand to benefit, does this mean that I am saying that Donald Trump is not putting America ‘first’? By no means. The misunderstanding that many have is that they conflate rhetoric about a country’s interest with the interest of the broad mass of the people. Trump essentially tailored his speech to exploit that misunderstanding.

In fact, America is indeed being ‘put first’ by Trump, but that is not a positive thing. The policies which he is advocating ensure that those who really stand to benefit are primarily the American financiers and the upper-bourgeoisie stratum of big and middle-sized manufacturers, who feel themselves to be under stiff competition from their counterparts in Europe and Asia. This scenario comes at the end of a long cycle of a widening pattern of global investment during and after the Cold War environment, which had led to the repair and economic rehabilitation of that section of the world that America had razed to the ground in the process of destroying Axis. 

The repair and rehabilitation was possible because the leaders of various European and Asian economies opted to play the longest of long games, accommodating the liberal global order that the American victors had maintained for their own diplomatic and geostrategic benefit (to economically contain their next opponent, the Soviet Union), but which were used by the former Axis countries and other Third World countries to build something again from the ashes of the Second World War and to take advantage of the mutual benefits that came from having the economic vitality and thus the military wherewithall to deter the Soviet Union. 

A hegemon’s dilemma

The flourishing of any world order in which a hegemon has to allow power to devolve into the hands of outsiders, is a world order which will eventually unravel itself as the hegemon will come to fear its own deputies. Much as the Greek Empire unravelled itself when each of the governors, tribes, and exarchates which had been permitted to accrue power so as to encircle common enemies, suddenly realised that they had reached a stage where they could bid for global power in their own right, so too the American liberal world order is coming to a close as this cycle of capital accumulation draws to a close.

The productive capacity which had been offshored from the United States and implanted into the European and Asian periphery so as to reinforce economic containment and encirclement against the Soviet Union during the Cold War, now becomes in 2017 the potential weapon which the American high-bourgeoisie fears will be turned against it in a multipolar world, the first chapter of which is now opening. America’s old Cold War gendarmes of capital, are now gendarmes that are increasingly operating autonomously, and the United States is struggling to chart a course to address that new reality.

The American high-bourgeoisie wants what it views as ‘its wealth’ back. But they are not the actual owners of it. The wealth, limited though it is, and not without imperfection in its distribution, which is presently enjoyed by the peoples of Europe and Asia was re-built through hard years of work by the generation of people who survived the Second World War, and who, seeing their ideals crushed by the Americans, resolved to build their countries again during the Cold War.

The American high-bourgeoisie knows that it cannot fight the world alone, since it is only a small class of people, and therefore it must assert leadership and bind the other American classes to itself. They do this by appealing to a form of populism, where people like Donald Trump, Mike Pence, Steven Mnuchin and Gary Cohn, knowing that they cannot appeal to a class consciousness, instead appeal to a civic nationalist mantra: “Make America Great Again.”

What is America that anyone should want to make it ‘great’ again? That is the most astounding development in this whole sequence, particularly in the context of the Alt-Right and other nationalist opinion-formers such as David Duke, who largely made themselves responsible for having enabled all of this. For example, Hunter Wallace at Altright.com said late last month: 

Hunter Wallace / Altright.com, ‘We Are The Vanguard’, 24 Feb 2017 (emphasis added):

[...]

The primary reason the media is so interested in us is because it is our ideas that have entered the political mainstream. For years now, we have been the ones calling for an America First trade policy, an America First foreign policy, an American First immigration policy, rapprochement with Russia, scrapping the refugee resettlement program, stressing our interests as opposed to liberal ideology, strong borders and a crackdown on immigration, assaulting political correctness, making peace with the labor movement, etc., etc. [...] Now, we are living in the digital world of social media and young people are watching us on YouTube and Periscope. They are interacting with us on Twitter. We don’t need the “mainstream” to network or spread our ideas.

[...]

We are the vanguard now. The world has changed, the “mainstream” is dead and the media is trying to catch up with the times. Rich Lowry’s National Review and Bill Kristol’s The Weekly Standard are at the nadir of their influence over the Right. Ultimately, it doesn’t matter if flyover country conservatives are familiar with Richard Spencer and the Alt-Right. If our ideas are triumphing over David Frum’s ideas and Bill Kristol’s ideas, it doesn’t matter. If our discourse triumphs over and displaces “mainstream” discourse, then we are having a massive impact whether the “mainstream” cartel acknowledges it or not.

The same kind of people who for years had operated under the suspicion that the United States was possibly falling under a ‘Zionist Occupation Government’, are now the very same kind of people who are actually trying in these days and hours to fight as hard as they can to attempt to defend and perpetuate the global reach of the United States government and its centrality as a manufacturing centre now that it is  transparently going into openly-verifiable overdrive in that regard. Now that the ‘occupation’ is openly parading itself in their faces from the White House in verifiable statements that have been reproduced in mainstream media outlets, they suddenly and magically cannot seem to see it.

Perhaps it may be that it is difficult to understand why that contradiction exists until you look at the socio-economic class dimension. Perhaps they choose not to notice the Zionism issue now, because it’s the case that it is inconvenient for them financially, given that most Trump voters are middle class and may believe that they stand to gain from the Trump administration’s budgetary, financial and economic policy direction. Or perhaps it is the case that they are just really bad at politics and aren’t paying attention to what is happening, and are more interested in identitarian form and signalling, than in actual policy. Or maybe it is the case that there is a kind of ongoing entryism which is usually not visible to the public but which only is revealed in short glimpses, such as, for example, when it emerged that Heritage Foundation analyst Jason Richwine had actually been writing for the old AlternativeRight.com website in 2010. Or it could be some combination of all of these things.

Whatever the case happens to be, for all those who ever believed in anything that those people previously said, these present developments can only be seen as a betrayal. If they are ‘the vanguard’ and this is what they have produced, then they have a considerable amount of explaining to do.

Unfortunately with the situation as it is, I am not expecting that an explanation will be coming from them, but I am expecting that the Alt-Right and Alt-Lite opinion-formers will continue to act as a kind of grassroots support for the Trump administration, one which will have a high resilience and effectiveness because it couples a tacit support with a consistent pseudo-denial of actually being on the same side as the administration. We hear on the one hand the Alt-Right continually saying that they are ‘not Trump’, but then on the other hand they like the specific actions the administration is doing and its overall direction which they see as a ‘stepping stone’ (to where?), they just wish that that those actions would be done with more intensity.

The effective function of the Alt-Right internet presence is basically that they remain engaged on social media as a ‘grassroots’ presence which continually presents narratives and arguments that serve to socially legitimate Trump administration spokespersons, supporters and key cabinet figures and their policy preferences in a way that is completely independent of the state, as it is done at arms length, behind a veil of denial and disavowal by the White House itself. The bonus that the White House receives in all of this is that there is no-one who has to be paid or instructed to do this for them. The Alt-Right doesn’t need to be paid, they do it for free.

Introduction

Dossier Begins

Getting started: This article is about one facet in the process of the Trump administration making its programme operational. The first operational step that the American high-bourgeoisie are taking is that they are seeking to enhance their structural power, or to turn a phrase, they are seeking to make themselves great again, by weakening the efficacy of checks or dissents against their power domestically. This would place them in the best command position imaginable, which would allow them the ability to then turn their focus to foreign policy and trade policy as their second step, with minimal interference at home. That second step is outside the scope of this article and will be covered at a later date. The first step is what will now be described here today.

Enhanced dictatorship of the high-bourgeoisie

There are four major actions that the Trump administration is carrying out right now which would allow the American high-bourgeoisie to enhance their structural power domestically. These actions are as follows:

1. H.R.985 - Fairness in Class Action Litigation Act of 2017.
2. H.R.720 - Lawsuit Abuse Reduction Act.
3. The appointment of Judge Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court of the United States.
4. The elimination of all federal funding for the Legal Services Corporation.

Let’s go through them in the order I’ve listed them. And in case you are trying to guess what the four items have in common, yes, what all of these things have in common is that they pertain to the ability to form a class so as to bring a class action lawsuit against companies or government agencies, and to raise funds to carry out that endeavour.

H.R.985

When people are facing systemic abuse from companies or from government agencies, class action lawsuits are a vital tool that is used to bring a halt to their behaviour. By bringing about a class action lawsuit, a few people can stand in for a larger number of people in a lawsuit against a perpetrator and seek either injunctive relief (where the perpetrator must cease a bad practice) or compensation (monetary damages).

The bill, H.R.985 which passed in the US House of Representatives by recorded vote 220 - 201 on Thursday 09 March 2017, and will next be placed before the US Senate, is a bill that makes it more difficult for people to bring class action lawsuits.

Bill H.R.985 makes it harder for people to form a ‘class’ by further restricting and constraining the criteria under which people may come together to bring a case, and placing various hurdles in the way of the collection of lawyers’ fees, thus decreasing the incentive for lawyers to take on class action lawsuits.

The net effect of this is that it will sharply reduce the ability of people to seek injunctive relief or compensation in any scenario where they are being harmed by a company or a government agency.

The architects of the bill and its proponents, such as Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R-VA), have tried to mask their intentions by presenting it to the media as a bill that is designed to prevent supposedly-existent ‘lawyer-driven litigation’, by which they mean a kind of ‘trolling’ litigation which is designed to enrich lawyers rather than address any actual grievance of the plaintiffs. By masking their intentions with such a cover story, the lawmakers have sought to conceal the actual reality of the attack which they themselves are conducting against working people and families.

The factor which exposes their cover story as a lie, is the simple fact that if they really thought that they needed to write a bill to prevent ‘lawyer-driven litigation’, then they wouldn’t have written a bill that attacks people’s ability to seek injunctive relief, in which money is not awarded but practices are changed, as well as compensation. However, that is precisely what they have done, and in doing so, their motive was revealed along with the effect.

On the issue of the hurdles placed in the way of the collection of lawyers’ fees, the bill deliberately limits lawyers’ fees in injunctive relief cases to “a reasonable percentage of the value” of the relief. This of course makes no sense, by design, because it is quite impossible for a court to determine what the monetary worth of a non-monetary action is, so as to calculate such a percentage. The effect is that lawyers would be disincentivised from taking the risk of bringing an injunctive class action case.

Furthermore, the bill also places a condition on the timing of the payment of lawyers’ fees to the date of full monetary recovery. This could even sometimes deny lawyers the ability to be paid their fees altogether, since some cases have a term of settlement that is longer than the remaining lifespan of the lawyers who are working on the case. For example, in a case where full settlement is expected to take fifty years, it would mean that the lawyers would not be paid until the end of those fifty years. Even with that potentially disastrous scenario aside, with regards to the duration of the litigation itself, the condition incentivises defendants to drag out and prolong litigation.

The possibility of never receiving lawyers’ fees or having to wait years to receive them, will act as an enormous deterrent for any law firm that absolutely requires those fees to pay their staff and keep their business running.

H.R.720

H.R.720 the so-called ‘Lawsuit Abuse Reduction Act’ is a cunningly named bill which will actually require all federal judges to penalise any lawyer who brings what they consider to be a ‘frivolous lawsuit’. Up until now, it has up to the judge’s discretion to decide whether to do this.

The interesting thing about this is that for a lawsuit to actually make it to the point where it has come before a jury, it means that a judge clearly already considers it to be a valid lawsuit. Legislation like H.R.720, simply incentivises the behaviour where a defendant can continually protest that everything that is happening is ‘frivolous’, and it disincentivises lawyers from trying to bring a lawsuit to find out how it will be regarded.

In practice, this means that the legislative and executive branches of US government are seeking to attack lawyers for trying to help people to seek relief or compensation through the court system. After all, a corporate defendant would likely start out from the stance that any lawsuit brought against their esteemed selves is definitely ‘frivolous’.

The appointment of Judge Neil Gorsuch to the SCOTUS

An ‘originalist’ Judge Neil Gorsuch, having previously been nominated to the United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit by George W. Bush on 08 August 2006, has been nominated to the Supreme Court of the United States by President Donald J. Trump. A decent summary of his background has been written at FiveThirtyEight.

Beltway conservatives immediately feted him as having come out of the mold of another now late ‘originalist’ Judge Antonin Scalia, or at least something close to that. Evangelicals celebrated Gorsuch’s statements about his belief in the ‘pro-life’ stance, as that is a pet issue of maximal all-consuming importance to them. 

The Alt-Lite and Alt-Right’s reaction to the nomination was in a sense no more sophisticated or diligent than that of any of the other groups. Hunter Wallace published a very strange article at Alt-Right.com which referred to Gorsuch as a “real American”, as though this were a reason for why he wanted to see Gorsuch nominated in and of itself. Richard Spencer produced an article which had a similarly strange central thrust, referring to Gorsuch as “America’s wise, WASPy dad—an avatar of the ruling class of days gone by.” Spencer’s view was echoed by James Edwards on the Political Cesspool, which carried Spencer’s article verbatim. 

In my view none of this matters anyway, but while ‘Gorsuch’ may be an old Anglo-Saxon name, the man himself is ancestrally Irish. Additionally, Gorsuch was raised as a Catholic, and then he converted to Episcopalianism later, so he is not a ‘WASP’. He’s also not America’s ‘dad’, he’s a nominee to the Supreme Court of the United States, for goodness sake.

Unfortunately no real analysis of Gorsuch’s views on class action lawsuits has been done by anyone in the nationalist sphere. If anyone had chosen to do so, then some extremely meaningful patterns, all of which are negative, would have emerged into view immediately.

SCOTUSblog gives us an interesting look in with the summary containing this excerpt:

Amy Howe / SCOTUSblog, ‘A closer look at Judge Neil Gorsuch and class actions’, 08 Mar 2017 (emphasis added):

[...]

Covering the Wal-Mart decision for this blog, Lyle Denniston described Scalia as the court’s “most dedicated skeptic about the class-action approach to litigation.” Whether Gorsuch, if confirmed, would follow in Scalia’s footsteps remains to be seen. During his decade on the bench, Gorsuch has participated in relatively few class action cases. In the cases involving class action issues in which he has participated, he has generally, but not always, ruled for the defense. Notably, both in cases in which he has ruled for the defense and those in which he has ruled for the plaintiffs, Gorsuch has emphasized the need for courts to stay in their lane, so to speak – that is, not to exceed their authority, particularly when it comes to decisions that are in his view best left to Congress.

[...]

The Bazelon Center has a review which also contains some example of cases that were not class action lawsuits, but seem to give some idea of how Gorsuch interprets civil rights law in general:

Bazelon Center, ‘Review of Disability Cases Involving Judge Neil Gorsuch’, 17 Feb 2017:

In Hwang v. Kansas State University, 753 F.3d 1159 (10th Cir. 2014), Judge Gorsuch wrote an opinion ruling against a longtime professor at a state university who had taken a six-month leave of absence to recover from her cancer treatment. At the end of that period, she requested a short period of additional leave at the advice of her doctor in order to avoid a severe flu outbreak on campus that could endanger her already compromised immune system. The university refused to grant additional leave. Judge Gorsuch began his analysis of Professor Hwang’s claim by asking: “Must an employer allow employees more than six months’ sick leave or face liability under the Rehabilitation Act? Unsurprisingly, the answer is almost always no.” Although the ADA and Rehabilitation Act say nothing about the length of leaves granted by employers and specifically require that that such accommodation requests be evaluated on a case-by-case basis, Judge Gorsuch held that a leave of absence as long as six months would “turn employers into safety net providers for those who cannot work.” He also described Professor Hwang as “a problem other forms of social security aim to address”—even though the professor was willing and able to resume her duties through online classes immediately, or through in-class teaching after the additional short leave. Judge Gorsuch also rejected her argument that the university’s inflexible six-month leave policy was discriminatory, instead reasoning that applying the same leave policies to all employees, without providing reasonable accommodations for qualified employees with a disability, would protect employees with disabilities from being “secretly singled out for discriminatory treatment.” Judge Gorsuch thus concluded that the six-month leave policy was “more than sufficient to comply” with the Rehabilitation Act. [...]

I’m sure everyone can guess where these examples are going. Here’s another:

Bazelon Center, ‘Review of Disability Cases Involving Judge Neil Gorsuch’, 17 Feb 2017:

In Wehrley v. American Family Mutual Insurance Company, 513 F. App’x 733 (10th Cir. 2013), a panel including Judge Gorsuch found that the plaintiff had not established that he had a disability that entitled him to the ADA’s protections. Wehrley, an insurance field claim adjuster, injured his knee and back in a workplace accident, and his employer fired him because of his inability to work on claims that involved going onto roofs. At trial, Wehrley introduced evidence of significant limitations in major life activities, including a medical report stating that he could not walk or stand for prolonged periods, that his pain disrupted his sleep, and that he had to change positions every 30 minutes while sitting. Judge Gorsuch and the panel concluded, however, that Wehrley had not shown that these impairments were substantial because the report did not say that he was unable to “walk or stand in the ordinary course of a day,” nor did it describe the extent or severity of the disruption to his sleep. Without sufficient evidence of a substantial impairment in a major life activity, the panel found that he did not meet the definition of a person with a disability.

And one more:

Bazelon Center, ‘Review of Disability Cases Involving Judge Neil Gorsuch’, 17 Feb 2017:

In Adair v. City of Muskogee, 823 F.3d 1297 (10th Cir. 2016), Judge Gorsuch joined an opinion affirming summary judgment against the plaintiff after finding that he was unable to perform an essential function of his position. The plaintiff, a firefighter who held the position of HazMat Director, injured his back during a training exercise. The city required that he complete a functional-capacity evaluation, which showed that he had some restrictions on his lifting ability. He sued the city under the ADA for disability discrimination, alleging that he was constructively discharged when the city encouraged him to retire rather than be terminated because it regarded him as disabled. The plaintiff argued that he was capable of performing the essential functions of the HazMat Director position even with the lifting restrictions, testifying that he did not need to lift in his position and had never performed regular firefighter duties during his four years as HazMat Director. However, Judge Gorsuch and the panel discounted the plaintiff’s testimony and instead deferred to a state law listing the ability to lift up to 200 pounds as an essential function for all firefighters, regardless of specialized roles. Since the plaintiff suggested no potential accommodations other than being relieved of the lifting duty, the panel concluded that he was not a qualified individual under the ADA.

Being an ‘originalist’ and a ‘textualist’ seems to involve being deliberately absurd in ways that happen to be generally convenient for the defence. The addition of Gorsuch to the Supreme Court of the United States meshes with the thrust of the pieces of legislation, H.R.985 and H.R.720, which were described earlier and which are presently making their way though the US Congress, in a way that enhances their effect.

The addition of Judge Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court returns it to the balance that existed when Judge Antonin Scalia was still alive. It is not beyond possibility that sometime in the next four years another judge will be replaced, and at that point Donald Trump may even be able to appoint an additional ‘originalist’ and ‘textualist’ to the court, such as for example Judge William Pryor.

But it is sad that no one is paying any attention to these developments. Choices made during the Trump administration will shape the character of the American system for a generation or longer.

The elimination of all federal funding for the Legal Services Corporation

They suggested that it was going to happen, and now they are moving toward doing it. See here:

New York Times, ‘Popular Domestic Programs Face Ax Under First Trump Budget’, 17 Feb 2017 (emphasis added):

WASHINGTON — The White House budget office has drafted a hit list of programs that President Trump could eliminate to trim domestic spending, including longstanding conservative targets like the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, the Legal Services Corporation, AmeriCorps and the National Endowments for the Arts and the Humanities.

Work on the first Trump administration budget has been delayed as the budget office awaited Senate confirmation of former Representative Mick Mulvaney, a spending hard-liner, as budget director. Now that he is in place, his office is ready to move ahead with a list of nine programs to eliminate, an opening salvo in the Trump administration’s effort to reorder the government and increase spending on defense and infrastructure.

[...]

Eliminating all funding for the Legal Services Corporation is the same thing as abolishing it. Some people may be wondering what it does, and such people would now be wondering about that at a time when it is too late to make a difference. Although the United States Constitution contains language that promises equality in the provision of justice, the language is operationally meaningless unless it can also be said that all people have the ability to access legal services and legal remedies.

Defendants in criminal cases are guaranteed the right to have a lawyer because of the outcome of the United States Supreme Court decision in Gideon v. Wainwright, 372 U.S. 335 (1963), but the same right to a lawyer does not actually exist for civil cases.

The beginning of the United States government’s effort to provide legal assistance Americans with low-income for civil cases, emerged during Lyndon B. Johnson’s ‘War on Poverty’, which gave rise to the creation of the Office of Economic Opportunity in 1964. In 1965, the office created the Legal Services Program, which provided assistance all over the United States.

However, the Legal Services Program was up for White House review in 1969, and the Office of Economic Opportunity itself was in existence because of the Economic Opportunity Act which was scheduled to expire in 1970.

President Richard M. Nixon, who took office in January 1969, asked the US Congress in February 1969 to extend appropriations for the Office of Economic Opportunity. The Ash Commission, headed by former United States Army Air Corps Captain Roy Ash, found “virtual unanimity that organizational improvement of the Executive Office of the President is needed.” Among the recommendations made on this issue, the Ash Commission advocated that Nixon ought to create an independent corporation which would receive funds from the US Congress to disburse to local legal aid organisations.

Nixon made the memo public in February 1971 and in May 1971 he sent a special message to the US Congress proposing the establishment of the Legal Services Corporation.

On 25 July 1974, Richard M. Nixon signed the Legal Services Corporation Act.

The Legal Services Corporation has not been without controversy during its existence, and several unsuccessful attempts to abolish it have been attempted over the years. The most recent unsuccessful attempt to abolish it was in 2005:

TexasLawyersHelp.org, ‘Eliminate LSC and Other Programs, Says Republican Study Committee in “Operation Offset” Budget Report’, 30 Sep 2005 (emphasis added):

A recent report issued by the Republican Study Committee (RSC), a group of nearly 100 conservative House members, calls for the elimination of all federal funding for the Legal Services Corporation. U.S. Representatives Mike Pence (R-IN), RSC’s chairman, and Jeb Hensarling (R-TX), RSC’s budget and spending task force chairman, issued the 23-page report on September 21, 2005. The report—called “Operation Offset: RSC Budget Options 2005”—urges Congress and the President to eliminate federal expenditures as far-ranging as Medicaid and Medicare, graduate school student loan subsidies, foreign aid, the National Endowment for the Arts, matching grants for presidential candidates, and LSC. [...]

Yes, that is the same Mike Pence who is presently the Vice-President of the United States. It’s interesting how that has happened to work out.

Another interesting fact is that the Heritage Foundation which submitted the list from which Donald Trump selected Judge Neil Gorsuch’s name to nominate him to the United States Supreme Court, is also visibly active in crafting and giving legitimation to the budget which will abolish the Legal Services Corporation:

New York Times, ‘Popular Domestic Programs Face Ax Under First Trump Budget’, 17 Feb 2017:

[...]

Stephen Moore, another Heritage Foundation economist who advised Mr. Trump during his campaign, acknowledged that powerful constituencies were behind many of the programs that are on the chopping block. But he said now that Republicans are finally in control of the government, they must make a valiant effort to fulfill the promises they have been making to voters for years.

“I think it’s an important endeavor to try to get rid of things that are unnecessary,” Mr. Moore said. “The American public has a lot of contempt for how government is run in Washington, in no small part because there is so much waste.”

If you know anyone who seriously believes that the Heritage Foundation along with all the other personalities I’ve mentioned here are just innocently trying to ‘get rid of things that are unnecessary’, send that person to me, because I have a bridge to sell them — and it’s on the moon.

Conclusion

Particular factions among the American ruling class are seeking to enhance their structural power, or to turn a phrase, they are seeking to make themselves great again, by weakening the efficacy of checks or dissents against their power domestically in an environment in which they have total power over all branches of the government and are receiving virtually no criticism from their own constituency on any economic issues. This would place them in the best command position imaginable, which would allow them the ability to then turn their focus to foreign policy and trade policy.

Everything that the American ruling class is doing to pacify and constrict the power of their own constituents at home, is a preparation and a prerequisite for them being able to efficiently conduct a trade war against European, Asian, and Latin American states.

Enacting a tariff regime as a necessary centre-piece of the trade war is an action which will raise the cost of inputs for all American manufacturers. One of the ways that they will offset that cost will be to enable American companies to act in cost-cutting ways that disregard the interests of American workers and families without having to worry about being subjected to lawsuits brought by those workers and families.

Passing H.R.985 and H.R.720, as well as appointing Judge Neil Gorsuch to the United States Supreme Court and abolishing the Legal Services Corporation, are four key actions that are part of the process of them ‘moving the ball down the playing field’ in that regard.

Evidence has been presented here which illustrates that the entire edifice of ‘Make America Great Again’ is going to be constructed atop a foundation of socio-economic retrogression and misery.

Kumiko Oumae works in the defence and security sector in the UK. Her opinions here are entirely her own.


Anti-Semitic bomb threats revealed to be hoaxes.

Posted by Kumiko Oumae on Friday, 03 March 2017 20:39.

Whatcha doin’, Dahnald?

In my previous article I sarcastically included the following line:

Kumiko Oumae / Majorityrights.com, ‘What you should be looking for in Donald Trump’s address to the US Congress.’, 28 Feb 2017 (emphasis added):

[...] More crucially, it will be instructive to watch for how Donald Trump will address the accusations that he has not deterred supposed ‘anti-Semitic’ behaviour among his supporters. Trump may take this opportunity to respond by once again putting the Alt-Right under the bus, a move which again will come at no cost to himself, because the Alt-Right will still continue to support him after he does that.

[...]

At the very beginning of the speech, Donald Trump chose to do exactly that. He did that when he said:

US President Donald J. Trump, ‘Speech to Joint Session of Congress’, 01 Mar 2017 (emphasis added):

And citizens of America, tonight, as we were — as we mark the celebration of Black History Month, we are reminded of our nation’s path toward civil rights and the work that still remains to be done.

Recent threats targeting Jewish community centers and vandalism of Jewish cemeteries as well as last week’s shooting in Kansas City remind us that while we may be a nation divided on policies, we are a country that stands united in condemning hate and evil in all of its very ugly forms.

That is a rather strange thing for him to say, given that at the time that he chose to say that, he would already have known about this investigation which was simultaneously taking place at the FBI:

Riverfront Times, ‘Juan Thompson, 31, Busted for JCC Bomb Threats; St. Louis Native Was Disgraced Journalist’, 03 Mar 2017 (emphasis added):

Disgraced former journalist Juan Thompson has been arrested on federal cyberstalking charges after the FBI traced multiple bomb threats against Jewish community centers and the Anti-Defamation League to the St. Louis native, authorities say.

Thompson, who was the subject of a Riverfront Times investigation last year, called in the threats as part of a bizarre scheme to frame an ex-girlfriend, according to the Justice Department.

“Today, we have charged Juan Thompson with allegedly stalking a former romantic interest by, among other things, making bomb threats in her name to Jewish Community Centers and to the Anti-Defamation League,” U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York, Preet Bharara said in a statement. “Threats of violence targeting people and places based on religion or race — whatever the motivation — are unacceptable, un-American, and criminal. We are committed to pursuing and prosecuting those who foment fear and hate through such criminal threats.”

Thompson, 31, was once a reporter for The Intercept, but he was fired after the New York City-based news site found he had been making up sources. Our investigation turned up even more journalistic problems dating back to his college days at Vassar in Poughkeepsie, New York.

Thompson later briefly surfaced at an online news site, but was fired after someone there learned of his background. He has blamed racism for his difficulties and self-published a piece on Medium blasting The Intercept and “the white liberal media.”

More recently, Thompson launched a GoFundMe campaign, claiming he was running for St. Louis mayor. (He never filed the necessary paperwork.)

“This election is all about people power,” he wrote. “Because only with your voices and your votes and your power can we fight back against Trumpian fascism and socio-economic terrorism.” He raised just $25 of his $5,000 goal.

See our latest update: Before Bomb Threats, Juan Thompson Unraveled — and Terrorized an RFT Reporter

Also, check out the federal complaint.

Juan Thompson Complaint on Scribd

The Conclusion

So it was basically an African-American man who was perpetrating an elaborate hoax so as to frame his White liberal ex-girlfriend as an anti-Semite.

You couldn’t make it up.

But think about this. If the federal complaint was formally raised the morning after Donald Trump gave his speech to the joint session of congress, is it beyond possibility that Trump in fact knew exactly what was going on before he gave the speech?

He is the President of the United States. This is not campaign mode anymore. The FBI would have made him aware of the fact that these bomb-threats were likely to be coming from Juan Thompson and that the motive was not political.

Why did Trump not just say with certainty that he knew that the bomb threats against Jewish community centres had in fact been a hoax all along?

I think everyone knows the answer to that question, right?


#Cloudbleed: The rank system perspective.

Posted by Kumiko Oumae on Sunday, 26 February 2017 16:45.

#Cloudbleed
Cloudflare’s bufffer overrun was dubbed ‘Cloudbleed’ as a historical reference to ‘Heartbleed’.

Why am I talking about this?

Some interesting events have occurred surrounding Cloudflare, one of the largest global CDNs, and I’ll take the opportunity to put some opinions out there about what has happened.

What a CDN is

A Content Delivery Network is a system of strategically positioned servers. Those servers maintain and accelerate the delivery of content. The main goals of a CDN are about speed, scalability and high-availability. A request from a consumer will generally be routed to the nearest geographic point-of-presence. The consumer’s physical distance to these servers has an impact on loading time. A closer and highly performing point-of-presence significantly improves user experience as a result of reduced loading time, lower latency and minimised packet loss. A Content Delivery Network also cuts operational costs by allowing businesses to effectively outsource the logistics and maintenance of these servers. This allows companies the ability to benefit from global load balancing and leverage the cost-savings that accrue due to economy of scale, because CDN provisioning is structured in the economic domain as an oligopoly.

Sounds nice, so what’s the problem?

There isn’t a problem in principle. In practice however, sometimes really bad things happen. When you have an oligopoly, the effect of someone accidentally placing an “==” equal sign in their code when they actually meant to write an “>=” greater-than-or-equal sign, can have pretty dramatic effects in terms of the number of people who might be affected by whatever happens as a consequence. Which, incidentally, is how ‘Cloudbleed’ happened.

It’s all part of the advantages and disadvantages of the present infrastructure. The advantages outweigh the disadvantages, but it means that this is the way that internet has developed and people have to basically be prepared for this kind of incident.

The story

The unwanted behaviour at Cloudflare was coming from an HTML parser chain that is used to modify webpages as they pass through the service’s edge servers. The parser carries out a range of functions, such as inserting Google Analytics tags, converting HTTP links to HTTPS links, finding strings that look like email addresses and then obfuscating them, and preventing malicious web bots from accessing some parts of a page.

When the HTML parser was used in combination with three Cloudflare features – email obfuscation, server-side excludes and automatic HTTPS rewrites – and if an HTML page being served to a consumer by a Cloudflare proxy had a specific combination of unbalanced tags, then a pseudo-random leakage of memory pages outside the boundary of what was supposed to be served would also be interspersed into what was being served.

This means that encryption keys, cookies, passwords, sections of POST data, chat messages from some online chat services, online password manager data, and HTTPS requests from other Cloudflare-hosted websites were being leaked pseudo-randomly.

Because the structure of the system is such that the proxies are shared between all Cloudflare customers, all customers were affected, and leaked pages of memory for pages being served on behalf of any given customer, were being interspersed among the expected responses for any other given customer.

Cloudflare optimises the performance of more than 5 million websites, and as this story unfolded, it really has become clear to everyone just how significant that number is. The duration of the ‘bleed’ is also significant, since this ‘bleed’ may have been occurring since 22 September 2016, and the period of greatest impact was between 13 February 2017 and 18 February 2017.

Furthermore, web crawlers and archivers, search engine cache services, corporate squid proxy-cache networks, and browser caches on consumers’ workstations globally were all downloading and holding the pseudo-random data that was ‘bleeding’ for the entirety of the duration of this period. It was just that most people didn’t understand what it was that they were seeing or where it was coming from, or otherwise didn’t notice it.

At that stage, it is not known whether anyone had realised it was happening before 19 February 2017, or whether it was exploited in any way.

What’s the appropriate response?

In situations like this, you have to decide on how good you think your luck is, and how important you think that you and your organisation are, and how thorough you are willing to have your response be. What you or your organisation chooses to do in response may be different from what you might recommend on a wider level to others. On principle, given the scale of the ‘bleed’ and the possibility that passwords may have become exposed, many security professionals are advocating that it may be best for all consumers to change their passwords for basically everything on the internet as soon as possible.

Another way of looking at it however is that the internet – much like the feudal structure of pre-modern Japan, or Korea, or India – has a kind of informal rank system. Messaging has to be different for different groups, because not everyone performs the same function, or has the same time available to devote to a particular task, and some people and groups tend to be more in scope of hostile state and non-state actors than others.

Changing all passwords everywhere, while technically the correct response for the ‘Brahmins and Kshatriyas’ of the internet, may seem like a complete overblown response to a scenario where 0.00003% of HTTP requests were affected, if narrated from the perspective of the ‘Vaishyas and Shudras’ of the internet.

In other words, sounding the alarm as loudly as possible could induce a kind of security fatigue among the ‘normal people’, and may even incentivise bad behaviour from ‘normal people’, since when mass-changing their passwords, they may be more likely to repeat the usage of many similar passwords across the services they use, and they may – in their haste – be inclined to reduce the complexity of their newly-crafted passwords.

In other words, sounding the alarm in the loudest and most severe way possible will have the effect of inducing the correct and thorough response from the custodians of key infrastructure – who already were going to display that correct response anyway regardless of the words in the media – while in fact also having the unintended effect of inducing a wrong or inadequate response from ‘normal people’.

It also has the effect of creating a ‘morning after bounty’, since for people who are engaged in signals collections and tailored access operations, this would be a luxurious time since the percentage of transmissions which will be about the changing of passwords would be spiking over the next one or two weeks if every individual in the entire world were asked to change all their passwords. Such adversarial actors would be incentivised to mount subversive campaigns during this time because the possible cost-benefit ratio of carrying out the project just tilted a bit more toward the ‘benefit’ side of the equation.

Thus, paradoxically, the panicked response to the already-fixed problem could be what in fact creates the environment in which a technically unrelated but socially ‘subsequent’ actual array of attacks could occur which otherwise may not have occurred.

Similar to a problem that has been discussed in relation to CT

If all of this sounds similar to the problem of managing a population’s response to terrorist threats while also maintaining a strong counter-terrorism posture, you’d be correct. It is basically similar.

It also comes with the same danger faced in erring too much to the side of ‘downplaying’ while trying to avoid inducing ‘panic’. Downplaying an incident so as to avoid triggering inadequate or inappropriate responses from the ‘normal people’, deprives them of information and can make people become suspicious of the intentions of the system. It can make professionals look like they are ‘incompetent’ or even that they ‘have something to hide’.

In such a case, a panicked response in the general public as a result of the feeling that they are being lied to by authorities or that authorities do not appreciate the scope and scale of a threat, may inadvertently end up leading to the very same damaging outcomes that the authorities were attempting to avoid in the first place, with the additional downside being that distrust of the persons in authority and the proliferation of conspiracy theories become added to it.

This is why it’s vital to find ways to assess the mood of the general public and to model their responses in some way, in response to almost any issue in society. The messaging for different geographic, occupational, and socio-economic groups has to somehow be different without being completely contradictory between themselves. If people in authority in any given situation are unable to leverage the social domain with sufficient adeptness to do that, then they may lose control of the narrative which is something that can have potentially unpredictable or even disastrous consequences.

Mastering the social domain and producing outcomes that mesh with and evolve with operational necessities, is something that is vital to continuing effective governance, be it governance of a multinational company which controls one of the Content Delivery Networks, right the way up to, say, governance of a country or of a regional supra-state.

Additional thoughts on Cloudflare

I of course do have criticisms of Cloudflare, but they are criticisms which are not about criticising the concept of what a CDN is, and rather, are more specific to Cloudflare as a company.

I’ll cover two issues.

I’ll start with the less concrete and more speculative one. For dissident groups that are not tacitly supported or at least allowed by the states in the North Atlantic, Cloudflare might present a risk to such groups because Cloudflare is within the jurisdiction of the United States and they could conceivably respond to legal requests made within the United States. Another factor to consider is that Cloudflare has taken dark funding and may actually be ‘on side’ with FVEY-related collections since at least 2012. Admittedly, it is difficult to substantiate this claim, but it’s something worth considering.

The more concrete criticism which I can definitely substantiate is Tor-related. Matthew Prince, the CEO of Cloudflare, took to his blog on 30 March 2016 to make what appeared to be a rather nuanced argument in favour of anonymity but against Tor in its present form due to the issue of malicious abuse of the network.

Much of what he wrote was eminently reasonable.

For instance, Prince suggests that Cloudflare could become friendly toward Tor under the circumstances where onion addresses were to begin using stronger hashing algorithms than the presently-existing SHA-1 80 bit hashing algorithm. Under such a circumstance, Prince suggested that the stipulation that onion addresses only be issued certificates if such certificates are EV certificates – which require extended validation procedures, cannot be issued automatically, and undermine the very anonymity which Tor was intended to promote – could be relaxed, as CA/B Forum would likely be open to discussing the automatic issuance of certificates in such a circumstance. Cloudflare could then allow its customers to create onion sites in some kind of automated way, and the issuance of certificates for those onion sites could also be automated. Tor traffic could then be whitelisted when it is directed toward those onion sites, while blacklisting could continue for Tor traffic which is directed toward the non-onion sites.

The world described in Prince’s suggestion would certainly be an interesting world to live in. However, we don’t actually live in that world.

Instead, we live in a world where Cloudflare alleges that 94% of the traffic directed toward its customers across the Tor network is ‘malicious’, based on the data from the Cloudflare IP reputation system. That may or may not be true, but given that there are a lot of people using Tor and a limited number of Tor exit nodes, this means that Cloudflare is either CAPTCHA-challenging or blocking 80% of Tor IP addresses and this number is steadily growing. This has the effect of discouraging people who have legitimate intentions from using Tor to access sites that are protected by Cloudflare.

Prince’s explanation for this is that Cloudflare is forced to behave that way in order to protect their customers from abuse, and that they can only rely on IP reputation because there is no way to do browser fingerprinting to differentiate between different Tor browsers, because the Tor browser is specifically designed to lessen the ability to generate unique fingerprints. Cloudflare can in such a circumstance only evaluate the communication on the basis of the reputation of the IP and the content of the request. That is also true and is a reasonable explanation, but at the same time it is what it is.

While Cloudflare’s default behaviour is to CAPTCHA-challenge Tor, it is possible to add the country ‘T1’ to the Cloudflare firewall whitelist, which would exclude Tor users from having to complete CAPTCHA-challenges. This behaviour became possible in late 2016, and so ‘dissident’ sites that continue to present challenges to Tor users are responsible for choosing or not choosing that behaviour.

In a kind of funny irony, Prince also notes that 18% of all global spam begins with an automated bot harvesting publicly available email addresses through the Tor network. Given that a significant subset of this spam is phishing-related, it is an unintentionally hilarious statement by Prince because 40% of all phishing sites in 2015 were using certificates that were issued by Cloudflare’s ‘Universal SSL’ service.

Furthermore, Cloudflare’s ridiculous ‘Flexible SSL’ – billed by them as ‘the easiest secure sockets layer ever’ – provides what is essentially security theatre between Cloudflare’s proxy and the client, without any of the actual security that would be required between the client tier and the middleware, and has the damaging effect of giving consumers a false sense of security. The so-called ‘Flexible SSL’ is so ‘flexible’ in that scenario that it is essentially non-existent. Consumers have been trained to look for the padlock in the address bar before submitting sensitive information to any website. ‘Flexible SSL’ grants phishing sites and other malicious actors the ability present that padlock to users with minimal effort. ‘Easiest SSL ever’, indeed.

I tend to prefer actual, real, end-to-end SSL to be the only possible implementation. But hey, that’s just me, right?

But now I’m just bullying them, so I’ll dial it back a bit and bring this article to a close. It’s possible that the people at Cloudflare didn’t anticipate that their services would be abused in these ways, and they did get unlucky with the Cloudbleed buffer overrun incident, but in any case, those who are inside glass houses should be careful not to throw stones. Matthew Prince should reflect on the recent incident and refrain from throwing any stones at anyone for at least a couple months.

Was Majorityrights.com affected by Cloudbleed?

This should go without saying, but I will say it anyway.

We don’t use Cloudflare here. As such, Majorityrights.com was not affected by any of the events described in this article.

If we were to ever have a burning need to actually use a CDN here, for various reasons I would probably suggest using either Yottaa or KeyCDN anyway, and not Cloudflare.

Kumiko Oumae works in the defence and security sector in the UK. Her opinions here are entirely her own.


What if we’re not ‘the bad guys’?

Posted by Kumiko Oumae on Friday, 10 February 2017 02:45.

Not actually 'the baddies'.'

It’s really great

Question. What’s the difference between:

  • being a pirate running a multi-ethnic drug-ferrying operation to generate money which is kept off-the-books for the financing of covert operations,
  • being a mercenary who is paid to attack slave-ships and liberate slaves,
  • being a radically forward-deployed coastguard which defends the borders of Britain at the edge of someone else’s shores on extended lines of supply, and
  • being a Knight Commander of the Order of the British Empire?

Trick question. They are all potentially the same thing, and that’s what makes Britain great.

The only people in parliament who seem to have any understanding of this history however, are the people in Theresa May’s wonderful cabinet.

Weaponised history

The difference in opinion between Amber Rudd and Justin Welby is very instructive:

ITV News, ‘Home Secretary faces backlash in parliament for capping lone child refugees’, 09 Feb 2017:

The Home Secretary faced a backlash in parliament after it was announced that the number of lone child refugees coming to the UK will be capped.

Amber Rudd insisted that the move to cap the scheme to just 350 children, far fewer than the 3,000 originally expected, closed to avoid encouraging people-traffickers.

Ministers quietly announced on Wednesday that 200 children had been brought in under the so-called Dubs Amendment and it will close after another 150 are settled in Britain.

[...]

Responding to the Commons, Rudd said: “I am clear that when working with my French counterparts, they do not want us to indefinitely continue to accept children under the Dubs Amendment because they specify, and I agree with them, that it acts as a draw. It acts as a pull.

“It encourages the people-traffickers.”

She also suggested that local authority funding had come into the equation when deciding how many child refugees would be settled under the programme.

[...]

The Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby said he was “saddened and shocked” to learn of the Government’s decision to stop the scheme.

“Our country has a great history of welcoming those in need, particularly the most vulnerable, such as unaccompanied children,” he said.

“Refugees, like all people, are treasured human beings made in the image of God who deserve safety, freedom and the opportunity to flourish.”

He added: “We must resist and turn back the worrying trends we are seeing around the world, towards seeing the movement of desperate people as more of a threat to identity and security than an opportunity to do our duty.

“We cannot withdraw from our long and proud history of helping the most vulnerable.”

The Home Secretary is correct, and the Archbishop of Canterbury is incorrect, as per usual, because Christianity is stupid and will make you become stupid.

The apparently long, proud history of British people ‘helping the most vulnerable’ in a scenario like the one that is presently unfolding in Syria, has only one historical precedent actually, and it is the historical precedent of the West Africa Squadron.

Philanthropic activities

The West Africa Squadron sprung out of the changing economic structural necessities in 1808 after Parliament passed the Slave Trade Act of 1807. The Squadron’s mission was to suppress the Atlantic Slave Trade by attacking slave ships off the coast of West Africa.

Letters of Marque were also issued to allow private security contractors, also known as ‘pirates’, to act on behalf of the British government under ‘false flags’ to attack Spanish, French, Portuguese, Arab, and American slave ships within the same mission scope. A particularly iconic practice was to approach a contact while flying the British red ensign, and then run it down the flagpole at the last minute and elevate the black Skull and Bones flag in its place before attacking the contact. Under the Skull and Bones, it was possible to exist in a parallel legal reality where you could do anything to anyone without a care in the world. This also happens to be the essence of what Ernst Junger would later refer to as the ‘dual state’.

The programme was later expanded by the 1840s to encompass North Africa, the Middle East, and the Indian Ocean, as Pax Britannica began to become entrenched across the major sea-lanes into the western hemisphere.

Notice how none of that involved inviting every single African into Britain. On the contrary, by taking the fight to the slave traders – both legally and extra-legally – it enabled the British to accomplish:

  • a great work of humanitarianism,
  • the pursuit of various geostrategic and geoeconomic objectives against Britain’s rivals,
  • disincentivising the activities of the slave traders, and
  • the ability to simply hijack virtually any ship and steal it, with popular support.

As Cecil John Rhodes once said, “Pure philanthropy is very well in its way, but philanthropy plus five percent is a good deal better.

And really, it is, isn’t it?

Anyone who doubts can simply contrast the premiership of Theresa May against the premiership of Angela Merkel. Which is faring better? Exactly. I rest my case.


Related Articles:



TRS asks people for more face to face meetings. Peals of laughter erupt from all quarters, globally.

Posted by Kumiko Oumae on Wednesday, 01 February 2017 08:50.

This article is Part 3 of an ongoing series about the TRS scandal. See also: Part 1 and Part 2.

After everything began crashing down around them amidst the wake of the TRS scandal, in which Michael ‘Enoch’ Peinovich was spectacularly doxxed and his personal information made available to everyone, one might be wondering what lessons the people at TRS chose to learn from all that.

On 24 January 2017, the people at TRS seemed to indicate what they had ‘learned’:

TRS 124, at 19m41s

So, they have learned that what they need is “more person to person meet-ups”. Do they even realise the situation that they are in? They are presently the least trustworthy people imaginable, and there is Mike ‘Enoch’ Peinovich calling for more person to person meet-ups, presumably with himself and the other massively compromised people around him.

And Enoch continues:

TRS 124, at 20m09s

He’s “not going to throw Cernovich under the bus”. But why? I think you have to wind the tape back a bit to see why:

TRS 124, at 16m58s

Oh, right. Because they apparently need the ‘Alt-Lite celebs’. I assume everyone will find out why in due course and it will all end up being published here by me in another article within the next six months to a year, given that their OpSec is completely nonexistent half the time anyway.

But this is one for the ages:

TRS 124, at 27m33s

Really, I can’t decide which is worse: The fact that (1) Mike ‘Enoch’ Peinovich claims to have a ‘pure Nordic phenotype’, or (2) the fact that there is a whole section of the Alt-Right which actually believes it because it’s politically convenient.

Is any of this for real, or not?

It really makes me contemplate the meaning of life. Or at least, it would, if there were such a thing as a ‘meaning of life’.


Next-level TRS: Michael ‘Enoch’ Peinovich is actually Michael ‘Enoch’ ENOCKSON Peinovich-Sippel.

Posted by Kumiko Oumae on Saturday, 21 January 2017 08:00.

It's a Minolta SR-T 101!
I’m staying on this story until every last detail is known.

Enter the next level

This article is Part 2 of an ongoing series about the TRS scandal. See also: Part 1.

Kind of like some kind of political equivalent of a K-R&B song about how a man just keeps lying so much that there is always another layer of lies beneath his first layer of lies, Michael ‘Enoch’ Peinovich of The Right Stuff has been lying on a whole different level beneath the presently-existing lies.

However, rather than contemplating the fun concept of trolling with musical metaphors, I want you to instead follow me on a journey into the other barrel beneath the barrel that TRS had already sunk to the bottom of.

Welcome to Part 2 of the ongoing drama.

The present situation

So far, Michael ‘Enoch’ Peinovich and his supporters have been frantically trying to channel all the discussions about his standing in the western ethno-nationalist scene toward his Jewish wife, Ames Friedman, as though the problem is confined only to her and as though the perniciousness and hypocrisies of these revelations can be mitigated by simply removing her from the situation through divorce. They have been resolutely ignoring the manifest high likelihood of Peinovich himself being Jewish, at least through his father’s side.

In a recent Rebel Yell podcast, Peinovich subtly referred to himself as a person of ‘mixed Jewish ancestry’. At 01:19:06 of that podcast, he said:

Rebel Shoah 18 Jan 2017, at 01h19m06s

But while people were grappling with that revelation, there is another secret lurking behind that.

As it turns out, Peinovich is additionally Jewish through his mother’s side. Seriously. This is actual reality. This is really happening. Read that sentence again, and consider the implications of it.

Peinovich is around and about 75% Jewish at least.

What we now know

Utilising the information that the first doxxing was able to dredge up, we were able to use that information to pivot across various branches of his family, including his siblings, but the most important link is that of his birth-mother.

Michael ‘Enoch’ Peinovich’s father is Michael P. Peinovich. Peinovich senior is married to Billie Gleissner, but we have not taken the time to deeply examine Gleissner, because Gleissner is not Michael ‘Enoch’ Peinovich’s birth-mother. Rather, Gleissner is his step-mother.

Michael ‘Enoch’ Peinovich’s father and his step-mother Billie Gleissner married each other in 1983. So who then, is Peinovich’s birth-mother?

We discovered that Michael ‘Enoch’ Peinovich’s birth-mother is Paula Sippel. Prior to 1983 she was known as Paula Enockson Peinovich-Sippel, her surname through her mother’s side is Enockson. That is the maternal name, which is likely the source of the nickname ‘Enoch’ which Michael ‘Enoch’ Peinovich is using literally in plain view.

Sometimes it’s the thing which is in plain view which paradoxically garners the least attention.

Two plus two is four

We know that Michael ‘Enoch’ Peinovich’s father gets the name Peinovich from a Russified and Americanised variant of the Croatian name Pejnovic, and that the name is associated with Jewish demographies in Croatia.

We also know that Peinovich’s father married twice, and that in both cases he married women with Jewish surnames: Paula Enockson Peinovich-Sippel, and Billie Gleissner.

Additionally, we know that Peinovich’s mother carries the name Enockson through her own mother’s side of their family.

And then, to top it all off, Michael ‘Enoch’ Peinovich ‘accidentally’ married a Jewish woman himself, Ames Friedman, the woman who is now at the centre of this recent Alt-Right scandal along with Michael ‘Enoch’ Peinovich.

Even the most sceptical people, in their heart of hearts, in their intuition, they know that there must be something there. There’s something. But they won’t admit it to themselves. Is it because of a cult of personality?

“How dare you speak the truth!?”

The most popular narrative among the sobbing defenders of Peinovich is that the people who are most viciously attacking TRS in the wake of this scandal, are people who have something to gain from bringing down TRS. Okay, sure.

Let’s be real here. TRS, the ‘inner party’, and the Alt-Right leadership core all got caught covering up a massive den of hypocrisy and money-grubbing deception at TRS, and they piled lies on top of lies within lies.

Michael ‘Enoch’ Peinovich had absolutely laughably ineffective OpSec, and as such it was possible to get his personal information and to discover everything about the fraud he was perpetrating. It was also possible to pivot across his family tree because his whole family maintained an ostentatious social media presence which could be easily dredged in the aftermath of the doxxing.

If you get caught doing something that you’re not supposed to be doing, and there is a good strategic reason for me to amplify the exposure of that scandal, then I will amplify it.

The ‘purity spiral’ meme

The TRS crowd desperately wants to call all of this ‘purity spiralling’ and thereby they hope to place a lid on the ongoing scandal.

I don’t call it ‘purity spiralling’. I call it ‘actually tackling the problem of Jewish subversion’.

Does this sound extreme? Some people are saying that the stance taken by the anti-TRS people such as myself, is ‘more extreme than Adolf Hitler’. Nothing could be further from the truth. Even someone such as George H.W. Bush would have purged someone like Michael ‘Enoch’ Enockson Peinovich-Sippel just as fast, if Bush had been able to have his way.

Don’t believe me? Here are the Zionists complaining about George H.W. Bush:

Commentary Magazine / Tevi Troy, ‘How the GOP went Zionist’, 01 Dec 2015 (emphasis added):

[...] For the first 45 years of Israel’s existence, the Republican Party was deeply divided when it came to the Middle East. Powerful forces inside the GOP had long been at best uncomfortable with Israel and at worst openly hostile. Those forces included big businessmen and oilmen with deep connections and interests in Arab lands and so-called foreign-policy realists who did not see why the U.S. should maintain a special relationship with a tiny, economically negligible country surrounded by 22 Arab nations that wished it would disappear.

[...]

Following Reagan’s lead and influenced by the neoconservatives who had gravitated to the GOP, pro-Israel voices became more confident in expressing their view of the ties that bound the United States and the Jewish state—the same monotheistic roots, which disposed them to an appreciation for human dignity and self-determination, and a shared belief in a covenantal founding of both nations. This view helped the GOP establish an ideological framework for foreign policy beyond the binary question of Communist versus anti-Communist.

None of this was seamless. Reagan was succeeded by George H.W. Bush, himself quite literally a Country Club Republican and oilman by birth and occupation and a foreign-policy realist by disposition. He famously complained about the Israel lobby, saying ludicrously that he, the president, was “one lonely guy” up against “some powerful political forces” made up of “a thousand lobbyists on the Hill.” His secretary of state, James Baker, was even worse, earning the wrong kind of immortality with his line, “F— the Jews, they don’t vote for us anyway.” Even as these attacks were going on, there were signs that Bush had already become an anachronism in a rapidly changing world—most notably the fact that the Baker line was leaked to the press by his disgusted fellow cabinet secretary Jack Kemp, a key figure in remaking the party as pro-Israel.

Also, objectively speaking, George H.W. Bush was better on trade issues than Donald Trump ever will be, and you will also find that unlike Donald Trump, George H.W. Bush was closer to a coherent global ethno-nationalist position, as seen in Bush’s stance on the Jewish Question, and in Bush’s stance on the defence of Eastern Europe and Central Asia from Russian colonial aggression.

Really makes you think, doesn’t it? Maybe someone should clone Bush senior and bring him back to power? I’m just raising it as an interesting point so that people can consider the present situation in context.

Shekel farmers

But hey, no, people like Mike Cernovich, Milo Yiannopolous, Paul Gottfried, Lauren Cherie Southern and Michael ‘Enoch’ Enockson Peinovich-Sippel bandied around some fashy-looking memes on Twitter and told people to give up on searching for their own candidates or building their own parties, and instead rallied people to throw in their lot with Donald Trump under various stylistic guises – ranging from one extreme which is ‘Gorilla Mindset book’, to the other extreme which is ‘favicon.ico is an open oven which is really edgy’ – and as a result the Alt-Right in the United States became incapable of identifying the very same Jews that they professed to be on guard against.

The Alt-Right did however become very proficient at: (a.) supporting stupid protectionist trade policies to spite Asian manufacturers and prop up American oligarchical cronies, (b.) crafting insults that were calibrated to really annoy Hispanics, and (c.) supporting the slashing of (c, i.) their own health care provisions and (c, ii.) their own social security benefits, (d.) re-enabling the potential for a pointless future American war against Iran, and (e.) just as an extra bonus present for Israel they even managed to elevate Jared Kushner to the position of being literally the most powerful Jew to have ever inhaled oxygen in the universe.

For an encore, performed live from the front deck of the Lusitania, the Alt-Right will probably next declare an undying support for Michael ‘Enoch’ Enockson Peinovich-Sippel, with some stupid excuse like “no punching to the right”, whatever that even means. Watch and see, that will happen!

READ MORE...


TRS founder Michael ‘Enoch’ Peinovich was exposed as being a Russian Jew.

Posted by Kumiko Oumae on Monday, 16 January 2017 03:42.

Look at that email address.

Viewing the source behind the web archive from 2014 reveals something amazing.

This article is Part 1 of an ongoing series about the TRS scandal.
See also: Part 2.

Order of Battle

As you all are aware, Mike Enoch, now revealed to be actually Michael ‘Enoch’ Peinovich, is the founder of the website The Right Stuff, which opened in 2012 and hosts the popular and dubiously overwrought podcasts Fash the Nation and The Daily Shoah.

The Right Stuff has spent the entirety of the past four years serving up piping-hot reactionary narratives all of which just so happen to serve the geostrategic agenda of the architects of Russian foreign policy by carrying out Active Measures, American domestic honeypot agenda of the FBI, and the Israeli security agenda.

But if anyone had pointed that out before today, such a person would have been called ‘paranoid’ and even ‘insane’. After today however, such a person would simply be called ‘well informed’.

Note: The name ‘Pejnovic’ has a diaspora in 20 countries worldwide and has its highest concentration in Zagreb, Gospic and Klenovac, Croatia. It is found in small numbers in Peru, in the United States, and in the Russian Federation. ‘Peinovich’ is a Russian-Jewish variant that found its way into the diaspora of the United States and in Argentina.

The whole saga leading up to the revelation of Enoch’s real identity, started after Red Ice Radio hosted a show on 26 December 2016 in which Reactionary Jew was invited on as a guest and Lana Lokteff asked the audience to give them feedback on whether right-wing Jews have a place in the supposedly ethno-nationalist political scene that has recently been emerging in the west.

This question was of course met with outrage from various quarters as would be expected. But what was truly interesting was that many of the users and even some global moderators at The Right Stuff began to respond to that provocative question in the affirmative. That was met with deep suspicion by everyone, because it is suspicious.

The controversy and trolling then moved to 4chan /pol/, which is basically the wild west. People from The Right Stuff orchestrated a two week long posting and sliding campaign in which non-stop wall-to-wall pro-Israel propaganda posts and threads were created by them. 4chan /pol/ moderators then began banning all of the TRS people who were doing that, and the details of the bans were then taken back to the TRS forums and presented there.

This is just an example of some of the things that the TRS people were putting up:

4chan post 106813204

4chan post 106807711

TRS then proceeded to deny everything. They claimed that other groups were impersonating them. Some claimed that Hillary Clinton’s CTR was conducting pseudo-operations against them. Some claimed that EU Stratcom was targeting them. Some claimed that British intelligence was targeting them. Some claimed that ‘SJWs’ and Chicago Antifa were trolling them. They claimed that somehow Stormfront was trying to make them look bad. The claims were feverish and frenetic, bold and brash, and all diversionary nonsense.

Somewhere along the way, the TRS people decided that since they were trapped in that situation, the ultimate distraction would be to initiate a miniature Cyberwar against 8chan for no apparent reason. TRS decided to attempt a DDoS against 8chan. It failed. At this point, 8chan /baphomet/ became interested in the feud and many of its denizens informed TRS that they must stop their behaviour immediately, and that they must also apologise for the DDoS attacks and that they must apologise for making the pro-Israel posts, on air, or it would be war.

TRS basically then told 8chan /baphomet/ to “bring it on”.

8chan is however, an anonymous message board that sits on the edge of the Darknet. So they brought it, but no one really will ever know who ‘they’ are. TRS found itself being DDoS’d and this forced them to take shelter under Cloudflare. While the TRS staff were attending to that, they also found themselves being doxxed and the process was being crowdsourced on 8chan /baphomet/.

TRS then tried to go back to 4chan /pol/ and play the two sites against each other by claiming that 8chan /baphomet/ were actually the Antifa. Of course, TRS had just previously bombastically accused 4chan /pol/ of being the Hillary campaign on one hand and of being western intelligence on the other, so no one at 4chan was really in the mood for yet another round of that nonsense again. Furthermore, TRS had misunderstood the nature of anonymous message boards, supposing that there was a real dividing line between the ‘communities’ at 8chan and at 4chan. There is no such dividing line in actuality, because no one is seriously loyal to an anonymous message board. It’s just a vehicle through which various actors can drape themselves in a cloak of trendy anonymity. There is no ‘community’.

The Right Stuff subsequently found itself being Blown The Fuck Out by all of its adversaries, and all of their adversaries were able to maintain anonymity during the process.

Isn’t that marvellous?

Outcomes

It turns out that Michael ‘Enoch’ Peinovich is a Javascript Developer and a Public Relations Professional who has worked as a Front End Developer at BurrellesLuce, Time Inc, and Vook. He’s from New York. Vook was later rebranded as Pronoun, and is now a subsidiary of Holtzbrink Publishing Group.

Oh, and Peinovich is a Russian Jew married to a Jewish woman named Ames Friedman.

In 2010 he ran an Anarcho-capitalist blog called ‘Emptiness’, at which his wife made several comments with her real name.

In the same year, Peinovich also wrote an article for the Mises Institute.

On 03 July 2015, Peinovich appeared on Red Ice Radio, and actually mentioned that article which he had written for the Mises Institute, when he was explaining to them that he ‘used to be a libertarian’. He cryptically commented after the 13 minutes 25 seconds timestamp, “if you find it, ask if it’s me, and if you get it right, maybe I’ll tell you.”

At this point I don’t think anyone will need to be making any guesses about that anymore. On top of that, Peinovich earlier admitted to everything on the TRS forums before basically transforming himself into the ‘shut it down’ meme and shutting everything down:

TRS 504ums post 722450

There is no more speculation, there is only fact. Mike ‘Enoch’ Peinovich in fact admitted to what he has done.

Datamining concerns

Assuming that the entire TRS entity either originated as or became a full spectrum Information Operation, it means that all the usernames, email addresses, IP addresses, access logs, security questions, and password hashes that were submitted by people who—against all good advice—chose to actually register on the ridiculous TRS forum have a not-insignificant probability of falling into the hands of any number of adversaries who Peinovich may have allegiance to. FBI? Mossad? Who even knows at this point?

Does anyone really think this story is over? For some people, the problems may only just have begun.

Questions Remain

The remaining question would be, who knew about Michael ‘Enoch’ Peinovich’s Jewish identity before it was exposed today, when did they know, and if anyone did know, why wasn’t it exposed via normal channels much earlier?

A lot of people were in a position to have noticed the fact that Peinovich was in fact a Russian Jew orchestrating a massive disinformation campaign against everyone, one which may have influenced the outcome of the American election and created significant disruption in other English-speaking countries.

This is a partial list of the people who have directly interacted with Peinovich in some way over the past few years, and who one would think ordinarily should have detected that something was very wrong:

  • Richard Spencer
  • Greg Johnson
  • Kevin MacDonald
  • Colin Liddell
  • Jared Taylor
  • Andrew Anglin
  • Lana Lokteff
  • Henrik Palmgren
  • David Duke
  • Colin ‘Millenial Woes’ Robertson
  • Kyle Bristow
  • James Edwards
  • John Friend
  • Sam Dickson
  • Jack Donovan
  • William Regnery
  • Andrew ‘Weev’ Auernheimer

It’s truly astounding that supposedly none of those people noticed anything, despite them having either worked with him and having been in interviews with him, or them having called in to TRS during its radio shows. At one point, Peinovich was even brought into a live podcast during the NPI 2015 conference.

Of particular significance is Peinovich’s relationship to Kyle Bristow. Bristow is the Executive Director of Foundation for the Marketplace of Ideas, Inc., an Alt-Right organisation that advocates on behalf of Alt-Right figures and coordinates legal services for them. Peinovich joined its board of directors on 11 December 2016, joining five lawyers, and law student, and a journalist who were already on the board of directors there. I presume they too might like everyone to believe that they didn’t notice anything?

Another one of key significance is Peinovich’s connection to Andrew ‘Weev’ Auerenheimer. Weev is the person who basically did a significant amount of work on the TRS website in order to ‘secure’ it. At some point between 2014 and 2017, the Paypal donations on that site were deactivated and only the Bitcoin donations remained. If Weev was the one who implemented that change, did he not notice the email address linked to their Paypal account was a glaring giveaway about who Mike Enoch really is? But if he did notice the disturbing truth, why did he not alert anyone? Many people could speculate.

Here are some examples of obvious clues that they could have picked up on:

Rebel Yell 145, at 19m55s

Rebel Yell 145, at 25m10s

Rebel Yell 145, at 28m00s

Just as large swathes of the American population were getting ready to give up on the system as it presently exists and to instead settle into total cynicism, along came the Trumpists and outlets like The Right Stuff, who managed to revitalise and rescue the ridiculous system yet again!

And also there was this extra incident here:

Mike Enoch basically admits he's Jewish!

Fucking incredible. All of the anti-semitic rhetoric that was going on there basically was a cover for the fact that a whole Jewish operation was being conducted right under the noses of the supposedly ‘red pilled’ and ‘savvy’ generation of new American right-wing activists.

Over the coming days and weeks, I’m sure that all kinds of explanations will be forthcoming from all of those people. The question that needs to be asked over and over again, is this: Who knew about Peinovich’s Jewish identity before today, and if any of them did know, when precisely did they know, and why did they not reveal it as soon as they became aware of it?

READ MORE...


Trump and his cyber ‘czar’ Giuliani want to outsource US cybersecurity. Can you guess where-to?

Posted by Kumiko Oumae on Saturday, 14 January 2017 00:01.

I was going to write about this myself, but then I realised that an article about this already existed on Ars Technica, so I will simply present it here without preamble:

Ars Technica UK, ‘Giuliani announces he’ll be Trump’s czar for the cyber thing’, 12 Jan 2017 (emphasis added):

Former NY mayor tells Fox that private industry will solve cybersecurity for the US.

On Fox News’ morning show Fox & Friends, former mayor (and frequent proxy for Donald Trump) Rudy Giuliani announced that he would be coordinating a cybersecurity advisory group for the Trump administration.

Giuliani’s bona fides for this role apparently spring from his time as chair of the “Cybersecurity, Privacy and Crisis Management Practice” at the New York law firm Greenberg Traurig, a position he assumed a year ago. However, it’s not clear that Giuliani has ever had any direct experience in cybersecurity law or policy. Giuliani previously was a partner in a Houston-based international law firm Bracewell (formerly Bracewell & Giuliani) for over 10 years, and he ran his own security consulting firm based on his mayoral experience and credibility from New York City’s measures taken after the September 11, 2001 terror attack. But Giuliani is really counting on private industry to provide all the answers.

“The President-elect decided that he wanted to bring in on a regular basis the private sector—the corporate leaders in particular and thought leaders in particular for cyber, because we’re so far behind,” said Giuliani. “And it’s his belief which I share, that a lot of the solutions are out there, we’re just not sharing them. It’s like cancer—there’s cancer research going on all over the place. You’d almost wish they’d all get together in one room, and maybe they’d find a cure.”

Giuliani said he believes that industry will have to lead an answer to cybersecurity rather than government. “That’s where we have the great creativity and we have the huge amount of money, and that’s where we have these great companies, the greatest in the world,” Giuliani said this morning. “So the idea here is to bring together corporate leaders and their technological people. The president will meet with them on an ongoing basis, as well as anyone else in the administration… I’ll coordinate the whole thing.”

The goal appears to be a one-way flow of information from industry to the government. “Number one, it’ll give the government all the information available in the private sector,” Giuliani explained. “Number two, it’ll form a little more connection between these people who are doing cybersecurity so they can work with each other. Some of these people, you put one and two together, you’re going to come up with six.”

Much of the private sector already shares information with each other, so it’s not really clear what benefit other than presidential face time corporate executives and “technological people” will get out of this proposed arrangement. The financial industry, for example, has the Financial Services Information Sharing and Analysis Center; the auto, aviation, telecommunications, health, retail, and transportation industries, among others, all have their own organizations as well.

Previously, there have been efforts, including the Cybersecurity Information Sharing Act of 2015, to encourage an exchange of information between government and industry. And the Obama administration made attempts to foster other industries to form information sharing and analysis organizations (ISAOs) through the Department of Homeland Security’s National Cybersecurity and Communications Integration Center. That administration also encouraged information sharing standards.

It’s not clear what roles any ISAOs will have in this new cybersecurity body, or even who the “thought leaders” Giuliani wants to participate will be. But Giuliani apparently wants to include foreign cybersecurity firms, including some from Israel. “They have tremendous cyberdefense research,” he said this morning. “We don’t get access to that over here.”

This post originated on Ars Technica

So there’s that. Apparently Rudy Giuliani knows just enough about cybersecurity to try to delineate precisely what it is and where it begins and ends, but not enough to know that IO, EW and ‘CW’ exist along a long gradient and that outsourcing a government’s cybersecurity to a foreign state’s supposedly ‘private’ companies, is a really bad idea because all the things on the gradient actually cannot be disentangled from each other.

The fact that the Trump administration would allow any input from Israel on this issue, is enabled because they have been able to take advantage of the mandate handed to them by their apparently desperate supporters, to such an extent that they have been able to now embark on reversing even the most reasonable policies of the Obama administration. The Trump administration is continually signalling that the US after 20 Jan 2017 will be trusting Israel to a degree that is unprecedented in American history.

Basically they are handing over what can only be described as a critical institutional chokepoint in the cyber domain, to Israel.


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