The Rove strategy, the Sailer strategy and Jewish playbook of Neo-Cons/Paleocons against “The Left”
Posted by DanielS on Sunday, 30 April 2017 09:06.
Non-White Migrants and the Catholic Church: The Politics of Penitence by Tom Sunic, Ph.D.
Posted by DanielS on Saturday, 29 April 2017 12:58.
Americans do not pay into Social Security beyond yearly earnings of $127,500
Posted by DanielS on Friday, 28 April 2017 01:33.
Group of blacks savagely beat 2 fleeing White men in East London “no-go zone”
Posted by DanielS on Thursday, 27 April 2017 05:33.
Alt-Right cannot be trusted to represent Whites, ethnonationalists on crucial matters
Posted by DanielS on Wednesday, 26 April 2017 14:18.
Remembering The Life of ‘Mandy’
Posted by DanielS on Wednesday, 26 April 2017 10:44.
Imperialist Israeli Air Force Bombs Anti-ISIS Forces in Syria
Posted by DanielS on Wednesday, 26 April 2017 09:33.
See Caracas Then Die
Posted by DanielS on Tuesday, 25 April 2017 09:43.
Minister: Russia hacked Danish defence for two years
Posted by DanielS on Monday, 24 April 2017 12:46.
Fresno Shooting Highlights America’s Anti-White Murder Plague
Posted by DanielS on Sunday, 23 April 2017 13:28.
GW’s Best Friend, Arthur Scargill (well, not really his best friend at all).
Posted by DanielS on Friday, 21 April 2017 18:11.
In search of a nationalist majority
Posted by Guessedworker on Friday, 21 April 2017 07:19.
No more than 12 migrants for Czechia
Posted by DanielS on Thursday, 20 April 2017 14:34.
Hardly The Battle of Cable Street: What Berkeley Doesn’t Mean
Posted by DanielS on Wednesday, 19 April 2017 12:16.
After the Referendum it’s the Brexit General Election, or perhaps not
Posted by Guessedworker on Tuesday, 18 April 2017 06:26.
Thread Wars: Armed Reconnaissance Edition, versus EGI Notes and AWPN.
Posted by Kumiko Oumae on Monday, 17 April 2017 20:19.
Silk Road News: Qui Non Bono?
Posted by DanielS on Monday, 17 April 2017 02:33.
That’s it, who’s a good goy now?
Posted by DanielS on Saturday, 15 April 2017 15:23.
Italy: 2,074 Seaborne African Invaders Land in One Day
Posted by DanielS on Saturday, 15 April 2017 00:10.
Trump no longer appears sympathetic to student debtors
Posted by DanielS on Friday, 14 April 2017 02:29.
WHY JOHNNY ROTTEN CAN GO F*** HIMSELF - corrected for the Jewish red cape and misdirection of terms
Posted by DanielS on Thursday, 13 April 2017 02:29.
The Paleocon agenda behind the Alt-Right & Trump becomes explicit with Trump’s attack on Syria
Posted by DanielS on Wednesday, 12 April 2017 14:58.
When a scientist (at the Annenberg School of Communications) asks the wrong question…
Posted by DanielS on Tuesday, 11 April 2017 13:55.
Silk Road News: First demonstration cargo train departs London for Yiwu, China.
Posted by Kumiko Oumae on Tuesday, 11 April 2017 09:23.
NASA invests in 22 visionary exploration concepts, including asteroid mining
Posted by DanielS on Sunday, 09 April 2017 15:30.
The Coalburner’s Daddy: Inter-Ethnic Family Implodes
Posted by DanielS on Saturday, 08 April 2017 13:44.
Donald Trump authorises reckless airstrikes against the legitimate government of Syria.
Posted by Kumiko Oumae on Friday, 07 April 2017 12:25.
Stockholm terror attack: Four reported dead as hijacked truck ploughs into pedestrians
Posted by DanielS on Friday, 07 April 2017 11:15.
Bashar Al-Assad, a proper Left Nationalist, a socially conscientious man.
Posted by DanielS on Thursday, 06 April 2017 10:15.
Sexual Psy-Ops through the gaze of Helen Mirren(off): from Caligula to Prime Suspect and Worse
Posted by DanielS on Tuesday, 04 April 2017 18:06.
London Attack on Kurd: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know; and another they were reluctant to tell you
Posted by DanielS on Tuesday, 04 April 2017 00:04.
Trump administration ‘will be having restless nights over Flynn testimony offer’
Posted by DanielS on Monday, 03 April 2017 17:15.
The Visegrád Group Will Not Yield to Blackmail, and Hungary Strengthens Anti-Immigration Policy
Posted by DanielS on Sunday, 02 April 2017 04:20.
Majorityrights Central > Category: Military Matters
Yeeeehaaah! Sooweeeee! Get em ....Leroy and Schlomo
“The United States Should Seriously Consider Peaceful Partition”, so says Vincent Law at AltRight on 24 April 2017.
How convenient that Vincent Law, a Ukrainian American (?) living in St. Peterberg, Russia, would proffer how balkanization of The US might go.
The right wing and Jewish perspective from which he comes is not to be trusted on either side of this issue. They created these conflicts, they created these immigration problems and now they want to create hackneyed “solutions.” They may bemuse and distract larpers, but in the end they will serve a Jewish and complicit right wing perspective. This will create disaster and conflict for others while these weasels A) escape to gated communities or B) escape the country entirely if need be (with their money, of course); finally, e.g., leaving remaining Whites to get raped by blacks (who are “really not so bad”, or perhaps “your problem”, when in fact, it was their perspective that long ago imposed them on normal Whites et al.).
Meanwhile right wingers from other races will be trying to swing deals established by Jews and right wingers as well. Saying that the kind of Jews and right wing huxters posing as “ethno nationalists” on this thread at Alt-Right represent White people and their ethnonationalism. They don’t. And they will create conflicts with people that White ethno nationalists should ally (not integrate or fight) with: Asian and Amerindian ethno nationalists.
The Right Wing/Alternative Right cannot be trusted with this issue any more than anything else - i.e., not at all. They are the ones who put Trump and his Jewish entourage into power. And that is just for starters in terms of their screw-ups. There are some basic issues that need to sorted out yet - not interminable matters, but too important to go right ahead and start bargaining on the bases and within the parameters that Jews and right wingers establish. They cannot even be trusted to say what is White or not.
DanielS: Silver is an (admitted) non-White (who “wouldn’t be surprised if he is part Jewish”, but at any rate, “has an affinity for Anatolia and the Levant”). He lives in England, not America, and agitates to deliberately stir-up strife among Whites while he tries to create enemies for them among non-Whites. In this case, with Asians. I drove him away from Majorityrights long ago for these reasons. He is in no way to be taken seriously, as a representative of Whites; nor as a negotiator of ethnonationalism in good or bad faith.
While I draw attention to Alt-Righters, trolls and the experience that I have of them misrepresenting White interests, Kumiko calls some interesting facts to my attention about Alt-Right.com. - they allow for slurs against Asians in their comments, but if you use the word “Jew” the comment will be blocked.
She also noted that she was the only one who gave an up-vote to Bowery’s comment:
Bowery’s idea of Sortocracy is among the most fair and intelligent on the thread, but the drawback of Sortocracy is for his/its empirical bias, as it lacks the historical element that hermeneutics corrects for. If that were to be incorporated, and it could be, it could be a very good vehicle.
..since we have an international audience, and sarcasm doesn’t travel well, I am compelled to say immediately that Arthur Scargill is not GW’s best friend, in fact, more like the opposite.
This article will be a work in process in regard to a hypothesis that I have of Scargill, that his successful fight against Edward Heath’s conservative government fits in with a broader hypothesis of mine - namely that Jewish interests take the best, most serviceable ideas in terms of social function and organization - specifically in this case, I am talking about the left social concept of unions, guilds, syndicates - and they make them didactic, i.e., Scargill’s union activism became didactic for the rubric and concept of the left, by having Soviet, Marxist and ultimately Jewish backing against ethnocentric, native nationalist interests; which forced right wing reaction. It is a reaction also manipulable, of which they will indeed make use in their interests. That is, where they fail to gain compliance with their international leftism - a “leftism” which spells liberalism against native ethnonationalism and tends only to allow for one nativist national union in the end - YKW.
A union is a social concept of members and non members; that is, in and out groups, non-membership, membership, legitimated discrimination and accountability on its basis. This concept can be applied to the level of ethno-nation. It is that level of unionized application especially which Jewish interests oppose - under the rubric of Marxism or the international workers Left, while deftly protecting their own Jewish unionization and nationalism (Jewish ethnocentrism and Zionism). But right wing interests, typically flying under color of objectivism, also tend to oppose this level of national unionization; and tend to conveniently go with their narrow interests as luck affords them or to be bought off by neo-liberal international interests and Jewish interests in opposition to the organization of native nationalism.
Thesis: It is standard operating procedure for Jews that they take good and compelling Left ideas for social organization, such as social unionization, and make them didactic (go over the top in misrepresentation with it to the point of reversal); compelling right wing reaction in their enemies as they are both more manipulable among enemies in that reaction and tending as such to frighten-off would-be popular supporters for the lack of empathic social perspective; its having been made didactic.
By associating himself early-on with Soviet Marxism, and successfully contributing to the overthrow of Heath’s conservative government, Scargill was didactically facilitating the concept of international leftism which in the end would leave room for only one unionized nation - Zionism being the only native nationalist union to be allowed; thus it was that Scargill’s unions movement was backed by proponents of international leftism and deployed as liberalism against the native national concept of Britain, imperviously forcing a reaction - Thatcher, whose Jewish objectivism acted further as a blunt instrument against the native nationalist union.
Where younger generations don’t stay on page with the memo of the one unionized native nation to remain of international leftism, but maintain absolute liberalism against all native nationalisms - as the participants of a Workers’ Youth League (AUF) summer camp on the island of Utøya did in their protest against Zionism - then a Zionist Breivik may be coddled to act through the available valves of ethnocentrically sanctioned aggression, that which is allowed by Jewish controlled discourse - coddled as such in his LARP to murder 77 kids in a misguided right wing reaction of nativist nationalism - Jewish interests want White nationalists to be didactic right wing reactionaries and to not be White Left Ethno-Nationalists.
Scargill more recently, still wears the red tie, but…
Coming back to the issue of Scargill, however, I thought he was going to more easily fit into the mold of a liberal, anti-racist, anti-native nationalist rat, masquerading as one concerned with unions and workers. Indeed, from what I know, admittedly not much, as I have not followed this history of British unions and their conflicts through the post World War II years, he perhaps still belongs in that category. There is evidence that he does, that he genuinely could have been a significant threat to the national interests, native and otherwise, of Britain and other European nations:
It is suggested and with likelihood that his strikes, such as those on the coal mines during Thatcher years, could have been used by the Soviets and could have had disastrous consequences for national security had they not been countered by British security who were aware of underlying Soviet design.
Nevertheless, by recent talks of his - here, 1, 2, and 3 in favor of Brexit and against the European Union, its common market, etc, in which by contrast to neo-liberal interests, he goes so far as to argue against those who would depict as “racism” his and other’s objection to immigration, as it is clearly against the interests of native workers, it seems that it is not quite so easy to depict him as running contrary to native nationalism, let alone his means (left unionization) doing that - at least not at first blush. Forgive the newcomers to this issue. While he may well have an outmoded idea of the sort of work and unionization to be protected, his heart appears now to be in the right place and the concept of unionization seems indeed to prevail as the natural recourse for organizing the people against scabs, the traitors and the downright treacherous - yes, including the treacherous by means of imposing immigration against native nationals; i.e., the concept holds up despite the fact that it has been typically misrepresented, including through him, by geopolitical forces trying to put forth Jewish/Zionist internationalism on the one hand and neo-liberalism on the other - both converging at a prescription of liberalism for native European nationalists; and since both sides are controlled by Jews and right wing objectivists, neither side wants anything like the unionization, the syndicalism of left nationalism for native Europeans and White diaspora as it would threaten their interests.
The concern now, of course, is that he is being used again by forces of neo-liberalism to placate naive native workers with promises of a place in obsolete production and protectionism in order to allow the YKW, Zionists and their Russian and American proxies to control the international market and labor - particularly Asia, as its rising interests would have little common ground with Zionist, Jewish and right wing interests as expressed through the Russian Federation and the United States; but may have a great deal to gain by making common cause with Left ethnonationalism among Europe and her diaspora.
More Silk Road News:
But wouldn’t Asians traipsing among Europeans be looked upon as “scabs” in this concept, thus not having common interests and at risk to its adoption? Not if they’re also characterizable as an accountable union, as opposed to the unaccountable ruse of objectivism.
The Greater Israel Project
For one salient matter, The Silk Road runs through Iran, which will increase its liberalization and business power in opposition to Israeli control of the region - its greater Israel project.
This would also hurt Israel’s first fall back position and assets in the Russian Federation, as it would lower oil prices and thus effect the primary bargaining chip at their parasitic disposal.
He is no opposition, he represents the Paleocon voice of “restraint”, preening the narrative for shabbos goy, providing speed bumps to help the likes of Kushner to realize when he might be going too fast to get the shabbos goyim more fully on board with an Israeli view.
Let’s stand with the legitimate government of Syria
The position of Majorityrights.com is that we have always opposed the Alt-Right and we have always opposed the Presidency of Donald J. Trump. We have been harshly rejecting Donald Trump ever since the moment that he threw his hat into the ring during the GOP primaries, because the Trump phenomenon is a viciously Zionist phenomenon which only serves the apparent interests of the United States, Russia, and Israel.
If you are reading this article, you doubtless are already aware of the events that transpired early this morning. The United States has unilaterally conducted an airstrike against a Syrian airbase. There are even rumours right now of a second airstrike being prepared.
What we know so far:
This article does not intend to offer any information that is not already in the hands of other media organisations. Rather, I intend to start a conversation on what actions need to be explored by activists from a British perspective, in order to undermine American Zionist aggression in Syria.
International armed conflict
The events that we’ve seen transpiring this morning have been deeply disturbing. According to the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), the situation in Syria now is officially “an international armed conflict”.
“Any military operation by a state on the territory of another without the consent of the other amounts to an international armed conflict,” ICRC spokeswoman Iolanda Jaquemet has told Reuters in Geneva. “So according to available information – the US attack on Syrian military infrastructure – the situation amounts to an international armed conflict.”
“It’s unclear how US air strikes will make civilians safer”, Lord Wood of Anfield, chair of the United Nations Association UK has said.
In a blog post, Wood wrote: “Unilateral action without broad international backing through the UN, without a clear strategy for safeguarding civilians, and through military escalation risks further deepening and exacerbating an already protracted and horrific conflict, leaving civilians at greater, not lesser, risk of atrocities.”
He added that by circumventing the UN “we reduce both legitimacy and effectiveness, as a course of action that does not have the broad support of regional powers and the international community, channelled through UN systems and processes, can have little chance of success in leading to a more stable Syria.”
Whispers in the backchannels
As far as anyone is aware of what backchannel communications have been taking place, the United States warned Russia of the attack before it took place. Additionally, Russia had signalled yesterday evening that it would not be willing to support the government of Syria under all circumstances. In other words, there are some circumstances under which Russia would undermine the interests of the Syrian government. This was an unsurprising admission, given that it was also Russia who opted to send Sergei Lavrov to barter with John Kerry to induce the Syrian government to surrender their chemical weapons deterrent in the first place.
It is interesting that surrendering their chemical weapons deterrent into the hands of Russia, has not made the Syrian government’s position safer. Rather, it has increased the incentive for America to push for opportunistic aggression against Syria, under the pretext of seizing the very weapons which Syria has already ceased to be in possession of.
It is also interesting to note that the ‘good’ relationship between the Trump administration and the Putin administration – which will probably broadly continue despite all the sternly enunciated words that are issuing forth from Russian officials today – has not led to the position of the Syrian government being any safer. In fact, it is precisely because the United States and the Russian Federation have been on good terms since Trump’s inauguration, that the probability of what has now transpired, happening, had increased.
A scenario in which the United States and Russia arrive at an agreement in which both countries have their geostrategic interests met, is a scenario in which Russia would probably turn against Bashar Al-Assad. With Trump in office, the chances of such a scenario manifesting are actually increased, because Trump has not until today presented himself as an opponent of Russia on anything, to say the least. The chances of them being able to ‘do a deal’, is greater. Russia has specific interests in Syria which do not absolutely necessitate the survival of Bashar Al-Assad’s government. Hypothetically they could be guaranteed in another way. Vladimir Putin himself signalled this yesterday evening just before the American airstrikes took place, when Vladimir Putin’s spokesperson Dmitry Peskov said, “Unconditional support is not possible in this current world.”
If the United States were to convincingly guarantee Russia’s specific interests on the Syrian territory – access to the warm-water port, a place in the pipeline consortium, a list of friendly future government figures – in some future arrangement mediated by Turkey, Qatar, UAE and Israel, via some backchannel communication, Russia might proceed to ‘take a deliberate dive to the mat’ diplomatically, and tacitly permit the United States to continue airstrikes against Syria.
People will need to watch for signs of that horrendous scenario continuing to develop.
One of the central features of British diplomacy and British foreign policy, is ‘hypocrisy’. It is not done in a haphazard way, but rather, it is done with method and purpose. It has evolved over the centuries because Britain’s stated position on any given issue – particularly when it comes to the issue of geopoliticised alleged ‘human rights violations’ – is often the opposite of what its governing instiutions have actually resolved to do, or not do.
Kerry Brown, the director of King’s College London’s Lau China Institute, once wryly referred to this behaviour as “the brilliant complexity of British hypocrisy”.
And brilliant is precisely what it is.
Today is no different. Boilerplate ‘agreement’ messages were offered by Sir Michael Fallon, presumably to stave off the American Communications Operators who would have tried to apply pressure to the British government. Giving them a statement of agreement means that there is nothing for the Americans to snappily quote and criticise in the social media domain. In actual reality, Britain is still bound by the non-intervention vote that was arrived at in parliament in 2013, and thus is not actually in ‘agreement’ with the United States.
ITV’s Paul Brand reports:
That’s basically how it is.
Standing against Islamic terror
Keeping British aircraft off the Syrian Arab Army’s back and away from its skies entirely, would give the Syrian Arab Army the space that is needed for them to keep fighting against outfits like ISIL, Tahrir Al-Sham, Ahrar Al-Sham, and all of the other Salafist-Jihadist outfits that are operating in Mesopotamia.
Those Islamist outfits are the same reactionary outfits who are constantly seeking ways to send fighters to conduct terrorist attacks across Europe and Asia.
It is better for all of us, that the Islamist reactionaries get killed in Syria at the hands of the Syrian Arab Army, than for them to be constantly free to organise terroristic actions across the world.
Bashar Al-Assad is operating one of the world’s great ideological garbage disposal services. It’s called the Syrian Arab Army. It’s very progressive. The Syrian Arab Army destroys reactionaries and traditionalists, twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week, and it requires no payment for that service. I can’t think of a better deal than that.
One of the best ways to stand against Islamism, is to let Bashar Al-Assad do what needs to be done, without intervening against him.
What can you do to keep Britain safely out of this air-war?
Britain is the most consequential and capable military actor in Western Europe. Britain’s non-participation in airstrikes, not only would ensure that Britain does not end up actively participating on the wrong side of a conflict that never should have happened, it would also have a dampening effect on America’s attempt to form the ‘coalition’ that Rex Tillerson has been talking about since last night.
The question is, how can you become an active part of keeping British forces out of the air conflict? This is not exactly a difficult task, since it’s a case of simply reinforcing the status quo. The balance of forces in parliament simply needs to be maintained as it is, so that the deadlock on the issue is maintained.
This means that people need to write to their MPs, comment on social media, talk to their union leaders, and – for those who have such access, even at the local government level – engage productively in conversations with key people and keep presenting to them all of the real downsides of what intervention in the Syrian conflict could cause.
Make people aware that sentiments have not changed since 2013, and that no one wants to go to Syria to fight the Syrian Arab Army. The British public were interested in fighting against ISIL and against Tahrir Al-Sham. There is something to be strategically gained from that. There is nothing of any enduring value to Britain that can realistically be gained from fighting against the Syrian Arab Army.
It may also be a good idea to generate a list of any MPs and councillors in potentially vulnerable seats. They should be reminded that the British people have long memories, and that if any of them tries to start a parliamentary insurgency against the non-interventionist result that emerged in 2013’s vote, they should expect to be tarred on social media as being ‘a craven ally of interventionist Trump’. The threat should be formulated in such a way that it makes clear that everything will be done to try to remove those persons from their seats at the next election, if they try to bring this to a vote again. In other words, people need to make appropriate use of the space which liberal-democracy has carved out.
The Royal Air Force and the Royal Navy will not be participating in any airstrikes in Syria.
Let’s do what we can to help ensure that it really stays that way.
Kumiko Oumae works in the defence and security sector in the UK. Her opinions here are entirely her own.
The YouTube channel N.D.L has put out a new video today, which really captures the sadness of what policing in Sweden must be like now.
Progressive cultural manifestations flourish under the protection of the state, while at the same time the policymakers undermine that same protection by allowing a retrogressive demography to enter and replace the citizens of the country. Additionally, the Anarchist Bloc attacks the police at every turn, exacerbating the instability of the situation.
Sometimes video really does depict it better than text.
The government of Stefan Lofven really has the same kind of haplessness and incompetence that the government of Harold Wilson had. I’m sure that no one truly wishes for this in their heart of hearts—but I think that if the situation should deteriorate to an extent where governance is impossible in Sweden and the electoral system continues to deliver up the wrong result, in such a case I would hope that the Swedish security services have contingency plans on hand to fight the decline in the same way that British services had contingency plans in the 1970s.
Until the last moment.
Kumiko Oumae works in the defence and security sector in the UK. Her opinions here are entirely her own.
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.
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:
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:
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.
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.
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.
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 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:
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:
I’m sure everyone can guess where these examples are going. Here’s another:
And one more:
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:
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:
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:
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.
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.
What is this?
Donald Trump’s increasingly roulette-like to-do list has now delivered up the latest ‘event’. Donald Trump will be addressing the US Congress today on Wednesday 0200 UTC (Tuesday 2100 EST). This is not a ‘State of Union Address’, because as a new president it is not expected that Donald Trump would yet know what the status of the United States is. For this reason it is customary that although a US President can call for a ‘State of the Union’ address at any time he wants, no president other than Dwight D. Eisenhower has ever called such an address in his first year.
As such, Trump’s address to the US Congress today should be understood as being an address, but not a ‘State of the Union’ address.
What should you look for?
When he addresses lawmakers from the Senate and the House, Trump will likely talk about tax cuts, and tax reform, regulatory adjustments, his plans for job creation, the construction of the border wall with Mexico, the abolition of the Affordable Care Act, and other issues, if White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer is to be believed. Spicer also added that the supposed theme of the address is going to be “the renewal of the American spirit.”
I can’t wait to see the kind of vacuous nonsensical stream-of-conscious word-salad which will be deployed across the lectern in search of a meaning, once Trump actually starts ad-libbing in the middle of his own speech as he so often tends to do.
In terms of the substance of his speech, I’m expecting that it will be in the combined tradition of Madison Grant, Franklin D. Roosevelt, and Dwight D. Eisenhower – which is to say, a crybully session in which people will be entreated to ‘discover’ that all of the problems of White and Jewish Americans and Israeli Jews, all the problems that they have, are somehow to be blamed on Asians and Mexicans.
Aside from that, I think there should be a short list of things to watch for in this speech.
1. Which pledges does he remember to mention, and which does he quietly drop?
The White House has said that the first half of the president’s speech should focus on his campaign promises, and which ones he has been able to honour so far. I’d suggest that you should keep on hand – which is to say, keep in right in your hand on your tablet – the Washington Post’s tracker of the 60 key promises which Trump made to his constituents. By looking at what makes it into the speech and what does not, you might be able to discern what his emphasis is, or perhaps promises he’s demoted to a lesser priority or even abandoned.
2. Does he appear under pressure and agitated, or is he calm and confident?
Donald Trump is strongly influenced by Norman Vincent Peale, and a key to understanding his psychology is to understand Peale. If you don’t already know of that horrendous individual, I’m sad to say that you won’t have the time to get all briefed up on it before the speech airs, because it’s a whole tangled mess of nonsense which takes at least six hours to get familiar with.
What to watch for is his facial expression in tandem with his ‘off script’ moments, since the key to understanding his ‘off script’ moments is that they are spoken to himself and not to the audience. The audience can either choose to opt in or not, but his little utterances like “so true”, and “we are going to win bigly”, are as much for his own autohypnotic benefit as they are for providing a repetitive touchstone for his audience to engage in the same autohypnotic self-reassurance.
Another pattern that is clearly observable is Trump’s willingness to transform personal disputes into grand narratives which are then inserted ad-lib into his speeches. Anyone or anything that he chooses to go off script to mention for criticism, is going to be something that he is actually worried about in some way.
US Presidents also often tend to use opportunities when addressing the US Congress to define and signal against state or non-state actors that they view as adversaries. The time is generally not used to define or confront domestic political targets. Yet it it likely that he will do so.
The thing therefore to watch for, is whether he gets pre-occupied on targeting domestic political targets and ends up constraining or limiting the time he spends describing or explaining his foreign policy stances. The ratio of time spent will tell us perhaps not a lot about the direction of the whole administration, but it will tell us more about where Trump’s mind as ‘Commander in Chief’ is most focussed.
3. Law and Order?
His attitude toward his own constituents will be most perceived through the stances he takes on law and order issues, which form a large part of why his supporters backed him during the electoral campaign. The question is whether he will dignify them with adult explanations of the challenges that lie ahead, or whether he will stick with the sloganeering he has used so far.
A big signal to watch for is if he devotes this time to attacking ‘the press’ in sweeping generalised terms. If he does this, it should be interpreted as a sign that he is still in campaign mode, and that in fact, he may be planning to keep doing that because he is already looking toward the election campaign of 2020.
Expect the topics – if he chooses to treat the audience as adults – to be ranging among counter-terrorism, his Muslim countries immigration ban which curiously omits Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and the United Arab Emirates and which he is planning to reintroduce with new wording, his attempts to deport undocumented Mexican migrants, the border wall, increased military spending or an end to the sequester, supporting the ‘blue lives matter’ phenomenon, and so on.
4. Addressing divisions?
Will he try to placate the demographic groups who are opposed to his presidency? Or will he ignore them?
Crucially, watch for him to try to reach out to African-Americans. There is a real chance that he will do that, because that is a ‘safe’ move. African-Americans are the most disorganised and least politically coherent group in the United States and it would be seen as a ‘great PR’ move which he would be able to execute at no actual political cost to himself.
He’d simply be getting criticism from the Alt-Right for it, a demographic group which he knows will support him no matter how much he spits on their faces, because they made memes for him and campaigned for him for free. They did it for free.
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.
Watch Twitter if you begin to see this happening during the speech, and you might even be able to see the Alt-Right live-Tweeting its own shameful cuckholdry. You could also look at the live thread on Daily Stormer to see the same cuck phenomenon take place.
I’m not saying it’s guaranteed to happen. I’m just saying it’s very likely to happen. There are a lot of variables in play.
5. Nonsensical Anglo-Saxon outreach?
Trump may try to make some kind of absurd outreach to Britain by trying to once again make a verbal connection between the social phenomenon which got him elected in the United States, and the phenomena which led to ‘Vote Leave’ being the outcome in the EU referendum in Britain in 2016.
If he makes this outreach, it should be interpreted as a sign of his weakness, as it would be a signal that he feels that he need to lean on the existence of a non-existent ‘club’.
Brexit, which gave rise to #GlobalBritain, is economically the complete and total opposite of #MAGA, and that is the most important sphere of reality which decides almost everything. Any attempt to link the two is really just an attempt of the latter to grasp the coattails of the former.
They share nothing.
6. Paul Ryan’s face and hands?
It should be possible to watch Paul Ryan’s reactions in order to gauge to some extent how far – if at all – Trump strays ‘off script’, as the Speaker of the House has vacillated between sometimes voicing support for the President, sometimes openly disagreeing with him, and occasionally taking the position of refusing to comment when asked about the content of Trump’s tweets.
Any adverse expressions on his face – a face which he will of course be trying to keep as stony and placid as possible throughout the speech if he can possibly do so – and any moments at which he pointedly refuses to clap when the cue comes for him to clap, could be indicative of a serious split between the Republicans in Congress and the White House, or indicative that Trump has simply dived off script in a dramatic way.
Keep in mind that ‘Trump off script’, can also mean ‘Trump actually mouthing neoreactionary things that Steve Bannon gleaned from Curtis Yarvin and then mouthed into Trump’s ear at the last minute before the speech’.
7. Length of the speech?
White House sources indicate that they expect the speech to last between 65 and 80 minutes. If it ends up being significantly shorter or significantly longer than that, then it would signal that something unexpected has happened, and it’ll be up to observers to assess what precisely that was.
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 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.