trump

BITTER EUCHARIST

coronavirus

The shape of things to come

Tuesday, 17 March 2020

May we live in interesting times, as the curse goes. Political change agents among the least of us have been denied once again, and those that sit at the tables of power are in the grips of a full blown effort to convince the people that the institutional structures of society are fundamentally sound, and that all that is needed is a competent manager at the helm to guide us through the rough waters we have been experiencing lately. You know the thing; we have to keep it great, lest someone come along and peer behind the curtain only to find that a revolution is brewing. The virus that plagues us may or may not be man-made, but the shape of things to come certainly will be.

As our selected officials flood the media with statements that have the phrase “war-time footing” (read: emergency extra-legal authority) sprinkled throughout, it is clear in which direction the country, and the world, is being led. And make no mistake, the war being fought on all sides of the crisis before us is an information war. We are currently in the reaction phase, which will shortly be followed by the solution phase. The solution phase will at minimum, include the following: (more…)

HIGH CRIMES

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A brief history of the modern presidency and impeachment

Monday, 6 January 2020

What is the de facto role of the modern presidency throughout history? If we examine the actions taken by all US presidents in the modern era, and let the common denominators be the ultimate measure, then the answer would be to preside over organized violence. This is certainly true from a theoretical perspective as well, since the existence of the State is dependent upon having a monopoly on violence. Additionally, if political action rather than political rhetoric is understood as the gold standard of future behavior, then the executive branch will pursue the following policies, regardless of the outcome of the upcoming election: (more…)

FIN DE SIÈCLE

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Trumpism and the remaking of world order

Friday, 10 November 2017

As the soul of America travels through the katabasis known as Trumpism, we are able to catch a glimpse of the various conjurings out of the Hegelian grimoire taking place that are shaping the narrative of the current historical moment. Rhetorically, the most strident voices against Trumpism are decrying what they view as a Völkisch pastiche underway, as if part of the country is under the spell of some kind of cult of personality mixed with a dash of ethno-nationalism – a mass ritual that will result in a society full of Minute Men asking non-whites for their identification papers, ready to deport anything not wrapped in Old Glory. The staunchest examples of this kind of politico-cultural gemeinschaft are Nazism and Zionism. But does Trumpism parallel these kinds of weltanschauung? In some ways it does, but in others ways, it represents the opposite. The one world government, resulting in a nationalist backlash, leading to a multilateral denouement dialectic being played out misses the larger picture. Namely, the new thesis that results from the synthesis we seem to be heading toward. Trumpism fits the fascist moniker in that it embodies romantic ideas of the great return to a Golden Age, (more…)

PHILIP DRU: ADMINISTRATOR

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Donald Trump, Steve Bannon, and the ghost of Edward Mandell House

Tuesday, 28 March 2017

Jacksonian revolt? At least that was the mile wide and inch deep characterization of the Trump Administration provided by an essay in the current issue of Foreign Affairs. The Trump Administration has packed its cabinet and top advisors with generals, investment bankers, and oil executives who serve the global military industrial complex and corporate interests of central banks the world over. The irony here is of course that Andrew Jackson railed against the power of central banks and corporate power, and counted as his crowning achievement the winning of the so-called Bank War in 1841, fought over the rechartering of the Second Bank of the United States (another irony is of course that for all Jackson’s hatred of central banks, his face was put on the $20 bill – a central bank note). He argued that giving a bank the power to control the money supply is unconstitutional. Imagine that argument being proffered in mainstream political discourse today.

To use a form of the now well-known “literally vs. seriously” heuristic so popular with Trumpism, populist is what the Trump Administration is rhetorically, corporatist is what it is in practice. A glaring and ignored question among those who view the Trump presidency as an effort to attrit the power of the Deep State is: If Trump is an enemy of the Deep State, why is the balance of the executive branch and key economic positions within the government now run by corporate financial interests (Rothschild and Goldman Sachs in particular)? This administration appears to represent an intramural game between factions of the Deep State, and not outsiders attempting to upend the status quo. All the discussion around deconstructing the administrative state, which on its face would indeed make government more responsive to those it purports to represent, i.e., the voters, seems like a red herring, as what is actually happening is one power faction wresting control from another.

If returning the power of government back to the people was the goal, an immediate effort to do the following would ensue: the reinstitution of Glass-Steagall (update) or an equivalent, a radical reformation of campaign financing laws which focuses on transparency and stringent limits on political donations, passing a law requiring all electronic voting machines be auditable via a paper trail and run by open source code software. And if they were truly serious, the Executive Branch could work with Congress to take back its constitutionally mandated power to print money under Article I, Section 8, Clause 5, and take it out of the hands of private corporations (repealing the Federal Reserve Act of 1913). This would be a good start. (more…)

TILTING AT WINDMILLS

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Red herrings, identity politics, and the futility of the coming culture wars

Tuesday, 24 January 2017

The Left is in high dudgeon, but for the wrong reasons. Identity politics and the culture wars are turning political ideologies on their heads, with California, a bastion of collectivist social policies, now rebuking the power of the federal government, with some even invoking the Lone Star State secession card. Liberal elites are falling over themselves decrying the end of civilized society with the inauguration of the short-fingered vulgarian, and the professional classes are lamenting the poverty of American culture as all the fascists, racists, and ignorant plebes are now behind the wheel of government and have been given the nuclear codes. The hyperbole has been something to behold among the most frenzied sectors of the Left’s Social Justice League.

The Left has been sleeping with the enemy for decades, and has been co-opted by its own supporters at the highest levels of the public and private sector, as governments and foundations all play their part. Left movements are so often futile because they are all funded by social engineers that have no interest in the goals and values of the citizens at the ground level trying to affect change. A recent case in point: The Clinton Foundation set up a textile factory in Haiti that provides jobs for women, which sounds like a noble mission. A GPS company was then brought in to provide free cell phones and microfinancing to these women, with the ostensible purpose of giving them access to communication tools, capital, and the ability to start their own businesses. Everyone can feel good about public-private cooperation and the spirit of American philanthropy at this point. What was the actual purpose of this venture? (more…)