The Shadow State

Imagine if at your place of work, you began to suspect that many of your coworkers were members of a secret organization. At first you notice that when one has an idea, all of them suddenly adopt it. One day one will use a turn of phrase and then all of them are using it, as if on command. They display no outward expression of membership in a secret group, but their behavior suggests they are controlled by the same source, or they are coordinated by some unknown actor.

This would have been the experience of Donald Trump when he took office. He knew, of course, that many of the people he inherited were loyalists to the Bush crime family or the Clinton crime family. That was part of his campaign, rooting out these people as bad for the American people. What he did not understand is that even the people who appeared to support him in Washington were part of an informal club. The Bush and Clinton clans were just manifestations of this secret club.

That seems farfetched, but take a look at this post in Politico about what they call “the secretive consulting firm that’s become Biden’s Cabinet in waiting”. The short version of it is that a “consulting firm” operated as a shadow administration while the Democrats were out of power. When Biden was installed, in was from this shadow government that he picked key appointees. The source of funding for what amounts to a secret society is not mentioned, but it is not hard to guess.

In many respects, Biden represents a return to a trend that began under the first George Bush and has become more obvious over time. That is, the president is a figure head representing a faction within Washington. Up to Ronald Reagan, new presidents tended to bring key people from their home state, who took up key positions and helped vet new hires in the administration. Over time they were assimilated into the Borg, but initially they offered a fresh perspective and a change in direction.

With Bush I, that started to change. His administration was from the Borg as Bush no longer had ties to normal America. The Bush family’s closest relationships were not to local elites in America, but to the Saudi royal family, Mexican drug cartels and the American intelligence agencies. Bush was the first post-American president. He was followed by Clinton, whose administration was filled with members of the semi-permanent ruling elite based in Washington.

Bush II and Obama were basically spokesmen for organization that existed in the shadows, like the one stocking the Biden administration. They were also the most shallow and unaccomplished men to reach office. Neither had done anything to that point that would warrant local attention, much less national attention. They could have been hired from a talent agency and trained to play the role. Obama famously used a teleprompter for all public utterances.

One reason the imperial capital revolted when Trump was elected is he was a break in the long evolutionary chain. By 2016, the people who actually run the government had come to see the president as window dressing to appease the masses. The real work of governance was done by the thousands of people who live, work and socialize in the world’s largest small town. From their perspective, he was a threat to their democracy, because their democracy had become one party rule.

A good current example of how things really work in American democracy is the case against former Clinton campaign lawyer Michael Sussmann. The judge in the case is Christopher Cooper, who is married to attorney Amy Jefress. She represents key players in the FBI Russia hoax like Lisa Page. Sussman’s lawyers are long time legal insiders serving the Democratic Party. The Lawfare Group, which was deeply involved in the Russia hoax, is helpfully providing commentary to the media.

The reason that there could never be a legitimate investigation of the FBI plot to overturn the 2016 election was everyone involved is connected to everyone who would investigate or prosecute the case. Washington is a separate society that is independent of the country over whom it rules. Again, if you imagine it as a secret club, politics makes a lot of sense. The part we see, campaigns, politicians, elections, is controlled by the part we never see, the semi-permanent ruling class.

There is also reason to suspect that many of the people working in politics are just as gullible as the people voting Republican. The FBI-organized protest last weekend looks like it was more for the people inside the wire than outside the wire. They wanted the rank and file in Congress to see the storm troopers cracking skulls and flag waving barbarians screaming for the cameras. The whole thing was an amusing flop, but it kept Ocasio-Cortez up at night, which was the purpose.

Long ago, Pat Buchanan observed that local politicians are often quite sensible, which is how they get bumped up to the House of Senate. The people supporting them hope they will be a sane voice for their interests. When they get to Washington, they quickly go native and become just another voice of the ruling class. Buchanan wrote it off to social influence, which is certainly true. The newly minted Congressman is quickly socialized into the culture and is then assimilated into the Borg.

Another reason though is the shadow government. These vast global consulting firms that operate in every western capital but are based in Washington operate like a secret society. They produce the people who get appointments in every administration, and they produce the candidates for spots on the bench. They don’t write regulations and legislation, but they develop and curate the people who do. They have evolved a system that is immune to the virus of elections.

What this means is that voting has become pointless. A system that is immune to voting is not going to be fixed by more voting. In fact, voting provides a false sense of legitimacy to the system. The dynamic of liberal democracy is that voting not only strengthens the system, making it even more resistant to elections, but it also encourages more voting. The more that people participate, the less their voice matters and the more shadowy the true ruling elite pulling the strings.


The crackdown by the oligarchs on dissidents has had the happy result of a proliferation of new ways to support your favorite creator. If you like my work and wish to kick in a few bucks, you can buy me a beer. You can sign up for a SubscribeStar subscription and get some extra content. You can donate via PayPal. My crypto addresses are here for those who prefer that option. You can send gold bars to: Z Media LLC P.O. Box 432 Cockeysville, MD 21030-0432. Thank you for your support!


Promotions: We have a new addition to the list. Havamal Soap Works is the maker of natural, handmade soap and bath products. If you are looking to reduce the volume of man-made chemicals in your life, all-natural personal products are a good start. If you use this link you get 15% off of your purchase.

The good folks at Alaska Chaga are offering a ten percent discount to readers of this site. You just click on the this link and they take care of the rest. About a year ago they sent me some of their stuff. Up until that point, I had never heard of chaga, but I gave a try and it is very good. It is a tea, but it has a mild flavor. It’s autumn here in Lagos, so it is my daily beverage now.

Minter & Richter Designs makes high-quality, hand-made by one guy in Boston, titanium wedding rings for men and women and they are now offering readers a fifteen percent discount on purchases if you use this link.   If you are headed to Boston, they are also offering my readers 20% off their 5-star rated Airbnb.  Just email them directly to book at sales@minterandrichterdesigns.com.


Political Weather

Depending upon where you live, the news could be full of dire warnings about how the virus is still raging and you must remain vigilant. Alternatively, the news may be about how those heretics somewhere else are being visited by an extra wave of the virus for mocking blessed Covid. It did not take long for the panic to become a racket. The Covid industrial complex is like a public works project. Everyone involved is committed to one thing and that is never ending the job.

Of course, there is always time for a reminder that the secret invisible army of Hitlers is out there in the shadows. Everyone needs to be on the lookout for white supremacy and all its manifestations. Every once in a while someone utters a discouraging word in the earshot of a minority, so the local news team rushes into investigate. Sometimes the national scandal monger chopper in a team to investigate something, which gives the locals a reason to put on a show about it too.

Many people have dropped out of media consumption for this reason, but they cannot escape the constant reminders that you better be afraid. It is impossible to live in the modern world without being exposed to some of it. The only means of escape is to unplug from all mass media, including the internet. Even that is not enough, as your friends and family will still be connected and some of them will be there to remind you of the various things that are supposed to keep you up at night.

Short of doing a Ted Kaczynski and relocating to a cabin in the wilderness, there is no escape from the reign of media terror. No physical escape, at least. The thing is, few people want to remain in this hyper-emotional state, so they find ways to filter it out and get on with what matters in life. You see this with the Covid lunacy. It is as if people are thinking, “okay if I wear this ridiculous mask around in public, I can be left alone to do the things I need to do so I’ll just wear the mask.”

Similarly, the latest vaccine mandate is being met with ignorance by most people as they have checked out of the Covid drama. They simply ignore the Covid news now, so they missed it. Employers will probably ignore it as well, as the last thing they need right now is another way to hassle their workforce. The bureaucracy could very well ignore Biden’s orders as well, as they are permanent, while he is temporary. This reality was made plain under Trump for four years.

One reason people are not in the streets demanding an end of this stuff is they have found a better solution. They just ignore it. Look around the dial over the weekend and you see that the sportsball arenas were packed with fans. They were not wearing masks or social distancing. It was like none of it had happened. You can be sure that television ratings were back to the prior levels. As far as most Americans are concerned, it is football season. Covid season is over.

The same can be said the bombardment of race in mass media. Spend a few minutes watching one of those sportsball shows and you quickly see that every ad is some version of hate whitey. Most people, of course, have long ago developed the ability to not see ads of any kind. Even ads that are attention getting, like the ones created for the Super Bowl, are forgotten the next day. Humans in a mass culture develop a force field to block out the things they dislike.

This is why the Soviet system staggered on for so long. The oppression under Stalin was unsustainable, but Stalin died before than could be tested. Instead, they got a decade of feverish experimentation under Khrushchev. That failed and threatened the stability of the system, so he was pushed out and what replaced him was a new normal in which most people were left to live as best they could within the rules. People ignored the craziness of communism so they could live.

In the current age, things move faster than in the prior age, so we may be living in an accelerated version of this. In the Soviet Union the joke was, “they pretend to pay us, and we pretend to work.” Perhaps the new normal in America is “They pretend to rule over us and we pretend to play along.” The rantings of the current old man in the White House become background noise. People pretend to notice, but otherwise get on with their lives and don’t make a fuss about it.

After all, much of what our political class seems to be doing of late is best explained by an effort to get attention. Sandy Cortez showed up at some swanky gala wearing a dress with the slogan “tax the rich” on it. The only reason this horse-faced barmaid is in Congress is she is good at getting attention. No one really cares what she or any of these people have to say about anything. The only reason to notice them is when they do something stupid like this.

We may be in the phase of the Soviet system where the empire is now on autopilot and the people in charge are just playing make believe. Similarly, the people they are supposed to rule are playing along on the surface but are going about their lives as best they can despite the noise. Unless and until there is a genuine crisis, politics is just an increasingly freakish carnival act. Since the pols are locked out of the cockpit, they are left to gain our attention by other means.

What we may be at the tail end of is a holiday from reality. Since none of these crises ever amounts to much, people pay attention if they need to feel some excitement, but otherwise tune it out and just live as consumers. There are minor ups and downs, but nothing important really happens, so no one feels the need to be too worked up for too long about anything. Like the weather, if you don’t like what is happening, just wait and things will change on their own.


The crackdown by the oligarchs on dissidents has had the happy result of a proliferation of new ways to support your favorite creator. If you like my work and wish to kick in a few bucks, you can buy me a beer. You can sign up for a SubscribeStar subscription and get some extra content. You can donate via PayPal. My crypto addresses are here for those who prefer that option. You can send gold bars to: Z Media LLC P.O. Box 432 Cockeysville, MD 21030-0432. Thank you for your support!


Promotions: We have a new addition to the list. Havamal Soap Works is the maker of natural, handmade soap and bath products. If you are looking to reduce the volume of man-made chemicals in your life, all-natural personal products are a good start. If you use this link you get 15% off of your purchase.

The good folks at Alaska Chaga are offering a ten percent discount to readers of this site. You just click on the this link and they take care of the rest. About a year ago they sent me some of their stuff. Up until that point, I had never heard of chaga, but I gave a try and it is very good. It is a tea, but it has a mild flavor. It’s autumn here in Lagos, so it is my daily beverage now.

Minter & Richter Designs makes high-quality, hand-made by one guy in Boston, titanium wedding rings for men and women and they are now offering readers a fifteen percent discount on purchases if you use this link.   If you are headed to Boston, they are also offering my readers 20% off their 5-star rated Airbnb.  Just email them directly to book at sales@minterandrichterdesigns.com.


Modern Faulkner

At some point in the future, the ape historians may look back at this time and call it the Bush – Clinton period of the American empire. The period started with the first Bush presidency in 1989, roughly corresponding with the end of the Cold War and concluding sometime around now. It is hard to know if this period is at an end or if it will stagger on for a while longer. It would surprise no one if Hillary Clinton or one of the Bush clan takes one last stab at the presidency in 2024.

The rivalry between the Bush family and the Clinton family mirrors the rivalry between the Compson and Snopes family in the William Faulkner novels. The Compson family represented the old Southern order that emerged from the wreckage of the Civil War and Reconstruction. The Snopes family represented the new, white trash culture that was slowly overtaking the old order. It was order and dignity at the end of its time versus an emergent disorder and lack of dignity.

In the American context, the Bush family represent the old WASP order that cannot update its thinking to the present. They are built for the old America that was confident and ascendant, but they find themselves at the end of empire. Desperate to maintain their status and position, they aligned with shady characters like Mexican cartel members, the Saudi Royal family, and the neoconservatives. This toxic blend of anti-American interests would shape the empire for decades.

The Clintons are far less grandiose. Like the Snopes clan, they represent the new order that is not really order at all. Instead, it represents the vermin that infest the dying old order, doing anything and everything to get an edge on the other rats. Unlike the Bush clan, they don’t seek power for prestige. They seek power for profit. They cut deals with China in the 1990’s for campaign cash. Then Hillary was auctioning off state secrets from her perch in the State Department during the Obama years.

The analogy breaks down a bit as the Clinton family was not productive like the Snopes family, so there will be no second and third generation. On the other hand, they did unleash the new breed of Baby Boomer politician. While biologically unrelated to the Clinton family, the entire political class has been shaped by them. The Poppy Bush type is nowhere to be found in modern politics, but the political class is thick with women who admire Hillary and men who think like Bill.

Just as the Faulkner novels play out in the shadow of the old order represented by the Compson family, American politics continues to play out in the shadow of the Bush clan and their efforts to remain at the top of the old order. Even though the 20-year debacle in Afghanistan has ended, it remains a big player in politics. Of course, the neoconservatives are still embedded in the system. It was their brains and the gross stupidity of George Bush that made Afghanistan possible.

The Bush family, like a drug resistant virus, will not go away. George Bush gave a speech to on 9/11, as Joe Biden was cognitively unable to do it. Of course, he took the opportunity to remind everyone of his contempt for ordinary people. He said of the January 6 protestors that “they are children of the same foul spirit, and it is our continuing duty to confront them.” Despite his inability to string a sentence together on his own, that perfectly captures the sentiment of the ruling class.

Taken together, the last thirty years have been a decaying ruling elite willing to strike any deal necessary to maintain their position. This includes allowing a rapacious vermin-like Clinton clan to gnaw away at the social fabric. One side looks at the American society as fuel to be used for the imperial engines, while the other side just sees America as a host on whom they will feed until it dies. Nowhere in the struggle between the two sides are the interests of the people.

No analogy is perfect. Donald Trump is certainly a member of the Snopes side of this fight, but hated by the clan nonetheless. He saw his opportunity for some personal gory in 2016 and he seized it. He had no grand plans or even a desire to reform the system, so he spent his time on personal projects. In a way, Trump was the new and improved version of Bill Clinton. It is a nice bit of narrative irony that Hillary was defeated by one her husband’s old golf buddies.

An important potential parallel between this age and the Faulkner novels is that the story preceded the upheavals in the American South. The new South that emerged in the late 20th century was not like either side of the struggle. The world of Faulkner is a distant memory now. Similarly, the old imperial order represented by the Bush clan and the grasping thievery of Boomer politics represented by the Clinton family is not going to survive the dissolution of empire.

What emerges from the inevitable turmoil that comes when these two modes of politics collapse under the weight of their own immorality is unknown. What is certain is a period of upheaval where the empire contracts in fits and starts, staggering from one crisis to the next. Each crisis shrinks the empire a little more until the very concept of empire is no longer tenable. The people will be spectators as the dying elites savage one another for their share of the declining profits.

The lesson from the Faulkner tales is that elites must be replaced by elites. The Snopes clan either had to evolve into an elite or be replaced along with the old elite as represented by the Compson family. That means the Bush side of the struggle will not last, but neither will the Clinton side. Rapacious thievery can never be the foundation for  a new elite. A generation from now, the people at the top of whatever comes of America will be nothing like the ruling class of today.


The crackdown by the oligarchs on dissidents has had the happy result of a proliferation of new ways to support your favorite creator. If you like my work and wish to kick in a few bucks, you can buy me a beer. You can sign up for a SubscribeStar subscription and get some extra content. You can donate via PayPal. My crypto addresses are here for those who prefer that option. You can send gold bars to: Z Media LLC P.O. Box 432 Cockeysville, MD 21030-0432. Thank you for your support!


Promotions: We have a new addition to the list. Havamal Soap Works is the maker of natural, handmade soap and bath products. If you are looking to reduce the volume of man-made chemicals in your life, all-natural personal products are a good start. If you use this link you get 15% off of your purchase.

The good folks at Alaska Chaga are offering a ten percent discount to readers of this site. You just click on the this link and they take care of the rest. About a year ago they sent me some of their stuff. Up until that point, I had never heard of chaga, but I gave a try and it is very good. It is a tea, but it has a mild flavor. It’s autumn here in Lagos, so it is my daily beverage now.

Minter & Richter Designs makes high-quality, hand-made by one guy in Boston, titanium wedding rings for men and women and they are now offering readers a fifteen percent discount on purchases if you use this link.   If you are headed to Boston, they are also offering my readers 20% off their 5-star rated Airbnb.  Just email them directly to book at sales@minterandrichterdesigns.com.


Bourgeois Fantasy

False consciousness is term probably coined by Friedrich Engels to describe a scenario where a subordinate class embraces the ideology of the ruling class, even though the ideology guarantees their subordination. In the communist view of things, workers embraced the bourgeois values of capitalist society, even though it meant they remained at the bottom of the social hierarchy. It was an interesting bit of projection that has been a feature of radicalism since the beginning.

To be a radical in the conventional sense of Western politics starts with a heavy dose of self-deception. Radicals are rarely from the subordinate class. Almost always they are from the ruling elite. They are intellectuals raised in leisure, but convinced they are the authentic voice of the masses. The rare few from the masses have been elevated because they confirm the bourgeois radical’s need for affirmation. As a reward, the striver gets to live in the farmhouse with the pigs.

A glaring example of radical self-delusion is in this clip from the Jimmy Dore Show in which the host discusses the revolution with Chris Hedges. For those unfamiliar, Dore is a comic who has made himself rich doing left-wing comedy. Chris Hedges is an activist who caters to the NPR crowd. He used to write for the New York Times and got famous trafficking in conspiracy theories during the Bush years. He is the type who claimed Bush was a fascist and Iraq was the Sudetenland.

The clip is interesting because both men are convinced they are opposed to the system, when in fact they are products of the system. This is not an act. They truly think they are the avant garde trying to organize a revolt against the system. Further, both seem to think they are working class heroes, leading the proletariat in their struggle against the bourgeois oppressor class. There are times when they sound like a museum exhibit explaining the 1930’s union movements.

Jimmy Dore is a rich guy who lives in a two-million dollar home in California, while Hedges is a rich guy who lives in a mansion in Princeton New Jersey. That is one of the tonier neighborhoods in America. They owe everything that truly matters to them to the system they pretend to oppose. If there was a revolution, they are the on the first train cars heading to the gulags. The only thing more ridiculous than these two talking revolution is the fact that they seem to believe it.

An amusing sidebar here is that they both have put a lot of effort into retconning their life story to match their roles. Hedges claims to have grown up working class, but his family sent him to elite boarding schools. But hey, the Chaffee school is pretty much a juvenile detention center. Dore carries on like his father was Archie Bunker, but in reality, he was a cop who owned a construction business. The system they claim to oppose has been very good to the both of them.

Other than the entertainment value, the reason to pay attention to these sorts of people is they offer an insight into the people in charge. The typical person in mainstream politics suffers from the same sort of self-delusion. Few have ever done real work or known anyone who does real work. Their entire lives have been inside the world of make believe, where they struggle with other actors, pretending to care about the people outside the bubble.

Just as conservatism is a bone the system throws to middle-class white people to keep them busy; socialism is a bone tossed to upper-middle class white people to make them feel special. One of the remarkable features of the Bernie Bro phenomenon is that it is whiter than a Klan rally. Scroll through the clips of the Jimmy Dore show or the Young Turks and it is nothing but palefaces. In no way does this brand of radicalism look anything like the people they claim to represent.

The self-delusion is not a one-way street. There are cynical people in politics, for sure, but most really believe what they are saying. Elizabeth Warren holds court in her mansion telling the wealthy hens in her circle about how she is fighting for working families and the victims of Wall Street. They all congratulate themselves on being the conscience of the people. All of these people are high on their own fumes, which is what keeps them from facing reality.

The thing about the concept of false consciousness is that Engels was inadvertently signaling what would become a prominent feature of radicalism. It is not the subordinate classes that are the victims, but rather the radicals themselves. Whether it is civic nationalists and their utopian fantasies about the Constitution or the middle-class socialists and their utopian fantasies about economics, radicalism requires the participants to live in a state of smug self-delusion.

Perhaps it is the nature of all political systems to delude the beneficiaries, so they do not have to face the reality of their position. The king can know himself, but his court must believe they are acting in the name of honor. The crafty political operator can be as cynical as he likes, but his supporters must see him as a man of virtue, selflessly serving the republic. In liberal democracy, it is the narcotic of radicalism played out in the comfort of the gated mansion.


The crackdown by the oligarchs on dissidents has had the happy result of a proliferation of new ways to support your favorite creator. If you like my work and wish to kick in a few bucks, you can buy me a beer. You can sign up for a SubscribeStar subscription and get some extra content. You can donate via PayPal. My crypto addresses are here for those who prefer that option. You can send gold bars to: Z Media LLC P.O. Box 432 Cockeysville, MD 21030-0432. Thank you for your support!


Promotions: We have a new addition to the list. Havamal Soap Works is the maker of natural, handmade soap and bath products. If you are looking to reduce the volume of man-made chemicals in your life, all-natural personal products are a good start. If you use this link you get 15% off of your purchase.

The good folks at Alaska Chaga are offering a ten percent discount to readers of this site. You just click on the this link and they take care of the rest. About a year ago they sent me some of their stuff. Up until that point, I had never heard of chaga, but I gave a try and it is very good. It is a tea, but it has a mild flavor. It’s autumn here in Lagos, so it is my daily beverage now.

Minter & Richter Designs makes high-quality, hand-made by one guy in Boston, titanium wedding rings for men and women and they are now offering readers a fifteen percent discount on purchases if you use this link.   If you are headed to Boston, they are also offering my readers 20% off their 5-star rated Airbnb.  Just email them directly to book at sales@minterandrichterdesigns.com.


Peak Israel, Peak Empire

There is an old expression about the Bolshevik revolution that says it was made by Jewish brains, Latvian bayonets, and Russian stupidity. There is a lot of truth to it, as the ethnic makeup of the revolution was not very Russian. One way to look at the revolution is as a revolt of subject people against their old masters. This was made possible by the cupidity and stupidity of the Russian elites. A very similar thing is happening in the American empire, just at a slower pace.

This formulation can also apply to the Middle East. For a long time now, the history of the region has been shaped by a combination of Israeli strategy, Saudi Arabian oil, and American force. It is reasonable to say that America would have no presence in the region if not for Israel. The creation of the Jewish state in 1948 set the region on fire, drawing in the Americans and Russian. Oil and gas, of course, is what made the region vital in the long battle between the two empires.

Since the Cold War ended, the primary reason for US involvement has been Israeli intrigue and Saudi oil production. The first crusade in Iraq was about protecting the oil and gas interests. The second crusade was about changing the balance of power in the region to meet Israel security needs. The crusade in Afghanistan was mostly about containing Iran, despite the rhetoric. Look at a map and it is easy to see that it would be a useful launching pad for air strikes against the Iranians.

The collapse of Afghanistan is getting a lot attention, but it is part of a larger collapse of the regional order. Israel, for example, has undergone a political revolution of sorts with the end of the Netanyahu regime. The new prime minister is the product of the neo-liberal order, rather than the fight for independence. He got rich selling software in America and his parents were left-wing fanatics from San Francisco. He is a man of the global managerial class rather than the local elite.

On the Saudi side of things, the walls continue to close in as their stranglehold on the oil and gas market collapses. New technology has opened up vast reserves in North America, so the need for Saudi oil has declined. Iran’s Caspian Sea natural gas deposit will put her on even footing with the Saudis. That leg of the triumvirate driving regional politics is no longer the gatekeeper of the world’s energy supply. Soon, they will be just another gas station selling a commodity on the world market.

Taken together, the old combination of Israeli strategy, Saudi Arabian oil and American force is about to unravel. America still has troops staged in Syria and Iraq, but the writing is on the wall there too. It also means Israel as the primary mover and shaker in the region is coming to an end. Without American firepower and the Saudi control of energy politics, Israeli is just another country in the region. Throw in the Russian-Iranian partnership and the Middle East is going to look very different.

This is one reason the neoconservatives have been trying to restart the Cold War with the Russians. Given the their involvement in the Middle East, a new contest with them would draw America back into the region. It was also why Israel talked Trump into dumping the Iran deal. Normalization of relations between Europe and Iran makes war with Iran impossible. If that is not an option, then there is little point in America maintaining a military presence in the region.

What we may be seeing is peak Israel. For generations, Israel has occupied the center of American politics. During the Cold War, the three “I’s” of politics were Israel, Indiana, and Ireland. After the Cold War it was Israel, India, and Investment Banking. It is fair to say that what passes for conservatism in America is just low-tax Zionism. The collapse of American involvement in the region means there is little reason to make Israel the focal point of American politics.

This is no small thing. The Republicans are celebrating the bad fortune of Biden and the Democrats over Afghanistan, but this is very bad for them. During the Cold War, the left-side of the American ruling elite was allowed a free hand in domestic affairs and the right-side ran foreign affairs. The end of the Soviet empire left the right-side without a reason to exist, so we got the crusades against Islam for the last 30 years. Suddenly, the only reason to vote Republican has gone away.

It is not all roses for the left-side either. Without the distraction of endless war, the focus will be on domestic issues. All of those people who were titillated by the prospect of “glassing” various countries can now focus their energy on the people trying to turn their sons into girls. America has been at war with someone for close to a century now and this has allowed the Left to remake the country. It also allowed them to underwrite their schemes with the proceeds of empire.

For seventy years, Israel has played an enormous role in the politics of the American empire, but that seems to be coming to an end. It may be that Trump’s decision to move the embassy to Jerusalem was the top of Israeli influence. The fading of the American empire, particularly in the Middle East, means the influence of Israel on the world must fade with it. It also means the Israelis will have to seek new partners in their endless game of neighborhood politics. America is no longer useful.


The crackdown by the oligarchs on dissidents has had the happy result of a proliferation of new ways to support your favorite creator. If you like my work and wish to kick in a few bucks, you can buy me a beer. You can sign up for a SubscribeStar subscription and get some extra content. You can donate via PayPal. My crypto addresses are here for those who prefer that option. You can send gold bars to: Z Media LLC P.O. Box 432 Cockeysville, MD 21030-0432. Thank you for your support!


Promotions: We have a new addition to the list. Havamal Soap Works is the maker of natural, handmade soap and bath products. If you are looking to reduce the volume of man-made chemicals in your life, all-natural personal products are a good start. If you use this link you get 15% off of your purchase.

The good folks at Alaska Chaga are offering a ten percent discount to readers of this site. You just click on the this link and they take care of the rest. About a year ago they sent me some of their stuff. Up until that point, I had never heard of chaga, but I gave a try and it is very good. It is a tea, but it has a mild flavor. It’s autumn here in Lagos, so it is my daily beverage now.

Minter & Richter Designs makes high-quality, hand-made by one guy in Boston, titanium wedding rings for men and women and they are now offering readers a fifteen percent discount on purchases if you use this link.   If you are headed to Boston, they are also offering my readers 20% off their 5-star rated Airbnb.  Just email them directly to book at sales@minterandrichterdesigns.com.


The Year Of No Emperor

In the year 69 AD, four emperors ruled the Roman Empire in succession after the death of emperor Nero. After being declared an enemy of the state, Nero fled Rome, but then committed suicide. This ended the Julio-Claudian line and created a power vacuum that was first filled by Servius Galba. He was soon killed by the Praetorian Guard and then the Senate appointed Marcus Salvius Otho, who quickly committed suicide. Then came Vitellius and finally Vespasian, who founded the Flavian dynasty.

Despite the chaos, this would be looked upon as a transition period. This was the second dynasty in the Principate period that set the table for the Nerva–Antonine dynasty, which was arguably the empire’s greatest period. This was the phase commonly known as the “Five Good Emperors”. It is a good example of how present chaos can often be seen as the end of something, but in reality, it is the beginning of a new phase in the life of society or an empire in the case of Rome.

This is worth considering in the present moment. There is no doubt that Joe Biden cannot survive his term in office. Prior to his installation, no one thought he would run for a second term, but the hope was he could offer a quiet period so the political class could settle on someone to take the job. Joe Biden was supposed to be the resting period after the terror of Trump. Instead, the Biden rule is turning out to be far more chaotic, largely due to his failing mental health.

There are four ways to remove a sitting president. One is impeachment, which is off the table for obvious reasons. The Democrats will never do it and the Republicans, if they regained the House and Senate, are too stupid and corrupt to do it. That leaves resignation, the 25th Amendment and assassination. All three of these options are interlaced, in that the threat of the third option by the security services would force one of the first two options. The second option could force the first.

The problem with removing Biden is that the replacement is probably worse than an old man with dementia. Kamala Harris was selected because Silicon Valley executives bribed the Biden people. She represents their interests and she had the backing of key Clinton people. The trouble is she has thus far refused to grow into the job and remains a noisy moron who has little imperial support. The job of president is as the pitchman for the party, and she is too obnoxious to sell anything.

Even though the ruling elite despise the people over whom they rule, especially the white population, they are trapped in the logic of their own rhetoric. Like the emperors during the Principate, they must keep up appearances. Those early Roman emperors made a show of maintaining the Senate and the republic structures, even though they exercised exclusive power. In the American empire, the ruling elite has to maintain the polite fiction of participatory democracy.

What this means is that the removal of Biden will require a plan to quickly remove Harris and replace her with someone acceptable. Harris had zero support as a candidate in her own party. The regime media will paint her as the fulfillment of the prophecies, but the public would quickly turn on her. Installing someone who has no constituency in the ruling class, much less the public at large, makes a mockery of their claims to democracy, so Harris can be nothing more than a placeholder.

The 25th Amendment creates a process in which the legislative branch negotiates with itself on a compromise candidate to solve the crisis of an incapacitated or deranged president. There is a 21-day window for the legislature to evaluate the president’s fitness to serve. In reality, this is a negotiation window. In theory, they could force on Harris a VP that would be a co-president. The assumption being that if she got out of line, she would be removed and replaced like Biden.

All of this underscores the fact that the current regime running the American empire has the same problem Rome had with Nero. The Claudian’s had run out of competent options for emperor. Once Nero was removed, there was no option that was acceptable to the natural constituencies of the empire. This is the problem the current regime faces in Washington with Biden. Remove him from office and the scenarios look more like chaos than a solution. No one is literally better than Harris.

This may be where the American empire charts a new course. We may be headed to a period of no emperor. Biden will remain in office, doing less and less until he is reduced to a concept, rather than a real person. He will be the virtual president. Meanwhile, the two sides of the uniparty will push forward their plans to reorganize the empire to fit their image of themselves. The formerly $3.5T “Build Back Better” plan, which is now $5T, just moved along in the House, meaning it will pass this year.

This means the other side of the uniparty, the Republicans, will be allowed to “win” the midterms next fall. They will get to manage the implementation of a massive spending bill that is not actually written. That’s right. This massive reorganization plan for the empire is not written down anywhere. It is just a framework to be filled in after it passes and is signed into law. The 2024 “election” will be over how best to finish the work of reorganizing the empire with a new emperor.

Whether or not this year of no emperor will be looked at in the same way as the Year of Four Emperors, which transitioned into the Flavian and Antonine dynasties, is unknown, just as it was unknown in 69 AD. This age could be analogous to Year of the Six Emperors, which occurred during the Crisis of the Third Century. This year of no emperor could be the beginning of the end or just the end of the beginning. Whatever comes next, however, will be nothing like the present or past.


The crackdown by the oligarchs on dissidents has had the happy result of a proliferation of new ways to support your favorite creator. If you like my work and wish to kick in a few bucks, you can buy me a beer. You can sign up for a SubscribeStar subscription and get some extra content. You can donate via PayPal. My crypto addresses are here for those who prefer that option. You can send gold bars to: Z Media LLC P.O. Box 432 Cockeysville, MD 21030-0432. Thank you for your support!


Promotions: We have a new addition to the list. Havamal Soap Works is the maker of natural, handmade soap and bath products. If you are looking to reduce the volume of man-made chemicals in your life, all-natural personal products are a good start. If you use this link you get 15% off of your purchase.

The good folks at Alaska Chaga are offering a ten percent discount to readers of this site. You just click on the this link and they take care of the rest. About a year ago they sent me some of their stuff. Up until that point, I had never heard of chaga, but I gave a try and it is very good. It is a tea, but it has a mild flavor. It’s autumn here in Lagos, so it is my daily beverage now.

Minter & Richter Designs makes high-quality, hand-made by one guy in Boston, titanium wedding rings for men and women and they are now offering readers a fifteen percent discount on purchases if you use this link.   If you are headed to Boston, they are also offering my readers 20% off their 5-star rated Airbnb.  Just email them directly to book at sales@minterandrichterdesigns.com.


The Death Of Citizenism

Note On Comments: Many have complained about the number of comments that end up in moderation. There is not much I can do about it, but one way to avoid this trap is to avoid certain language like profanity. The spam filter gets triggered by the colorful use of euphemisms. Links to images and movies is another trigger. They tend to go right to the trash bin without hitting moderation.


For at least two decades there has been a debate on the Right, broadly defined, about how to define America and the citizen. On one side are the intellectual descendants of Harry Jaffa, who argued America is just an idea, so a citizen is someone who agrees with that idea. On the other side are the people who take the view of the Founders who held the traditional view of nationhood. America is the product of a people who secured the blessings of liberty for themselves and their posterity.

A middle ground was staked out twenty years ago by Steve Sailer. He came up with an idea he called “citizenism” which says “Americans should be biased in favor of the welfare of our current fellow citizens over that of the six billion foreigners.” Therefore, “our leaders have a duty to current citizens and their descendants over the interests of prospective citizens and their descendants”. This is a definition that allows for the appreciation of racial differences between the current citizens.

Sailer’s definition is reactive, more than objective. He was trying at the time to put space between himself and other race realists. He wanted to talk honestly and openly about racial differences without being lumped in with people like Jared Taylor, who he considered to be a white nationalist. Sailer and Jared Taylor had an exchange back in 2005 on this topic as well as Taylor’s book The Color of Crime. Here are some bits of this debate here, here and here.

Fifteen years on, we can look at the three sides of this dispute with the benefit of hindsight and see who was closer to the truth. The “nation of ideas” side is looking rather shabby, as the West lurches into despotism in an effort to keep the wildly diverse population from destroying itself. The suspension of civil liberties, constant surveillance and state sanctioned domestic terrorism suggest that the idea at the heart of this new definition of the nation is authoritarianism.

Further, the “nation of ideas” concept was always a Marxist notion. Instead of society being the product of economic relations, the nation of ideas people define society as cultural relations. This is right out of the cultural Marxist handbook. The main difference is the Left thinks that culture is the product of institutions while the Right thinks it is the product of magic. While both sides are wrong about the source of culture, the Left was smart enough to seize the institutions.

The traditionalists who claim a nation is the product of a people, held together by a shared history and kinship have not been proven correct, but their claims against a nation of ideas is supported by present reality. Time will tell if the West devolves into tribal camps that judge their relations with other groups purely through the lens of tribal self-interest, but that is the current direction. At the minimum, the Jared Taylor camp was right about identity politics and what is means for white people.

As far as citizenism, it may be the biggest loser. In his exchange with Jared Taylor, Steve Sailer wrote, “And yet, this manner of thinking, this dismissal of objective reality in favor of assessing whose side the speaker is on, is probably as popular today in America as it was in Berlin and Moscow in Orwell’s day.” Sailer was comparing Orwell’s description of Nazism with Taylor’s brand of white nationalism. In other words, these views contrast with objective reality.

It is turns out that the citizenism can only work if everyone involved steadfastly and fanatically rejects objective reality. For example, they must refuse to consider that what leaders will do is not always in line with what you think they ought to do. Further, the “best interests of the current citizens” is a normative statement, whose definition is based on the perspective of the speaker. The universalist concept of best interest at the heart of citizenism is as real as the unicorn.

To some degree, this form of bourgeoise objectivism has always functioned as a form of escapism where the objectivist gets to be both right and taboo. In this case, he gets to speak candidly about the human condition from the perspective of biology but avoid being sanctioned by the people who must deny this reality. In other words, it assumes there is an exception to morality, where you can avoid official sanction over impure thoughts if you can prove those thoughts to be correct.

This is a world that denies the reality of the prevailing orthodoxy, thus denying objective reality with regards to human relations. Every society has its moral framework that is rooted in its sense of identity. This is largely controlled by the ruling class, which is a feature of every society, regardless of politics. The morality of the people in charge of the West requires us to deny biology and they make no exceptions. That is a reality one must accept before engaging in any analysis of politics.

In the end, Steve Sailer’s approach was rooted in a misunderstanding of what lies behind things like open borders. It was not a desire for mundane things like a desire to save the world or a demand for cheap labor. At the heart of the neoliberal project is the assertion that humans are infinitely adaptable to their culture. This is the unequivocal denial of biological reality. This is why citizenism was doomed from the start. It offered a compromise that could never be tolerated, much less accepted.

In the end, the nation of ideas side was probably more realistic than their critics on the biological reality side. They accepted the premise of cultural Marxism, which is that control of the institutions is what matters in current politics. They simply lacked the intelligence and courage to put their ideas into practice. As a result, the West is headed into the darkness of radicalism. If the West is to survive, Western man must accept biological reality and the reality of those who oppose him.


The crackdown by the oligarchs on dissidents has had the happy result of a proliferation of new ways to support your favorite creator. If you like my work and wish to kick in a few bucks, you can buy me a beer. You can sign up for a SubscribeStar subscription and get some extra content. You can donate via PayPal. My crypto addresses are here for those who prefer that option. You can send gold bars to: Z Media LLC P.O. Box 432 Cockeysville, MD 21030-0432. Thank you for your support!


Promotions: We have a new addition to the list. Havamal Soap Works is the maker of natural, handmade soap and bath products. If you are looking to reduce the volume of man-made chemicals in your life, all-natural personal products are a good start. If you use this link you get 15% off of your purchase.

The good folks at Alaska Chaga are offering a ten percent discount to readers of this site. You just click on the this link and they take care of the rest. About a year ago they sent me some of their stuff. Up until that point, I had never heard of chaga, but I gave a try and it is very good. It is a tea, but it has a mild flavor. It’s autumn here in Lagos, so it is my daily beverage now.

Minter & Richter Designs makes high-quality, hand-made by one guy in Boston, titanium wedding rings for men and women and they are now offering readers a fifteen percent discount on purchases if you use this link.   If you are headed to Boston, they are also offering my readers 20% off their 5-star rated Airbnb.  Just email them directly to book at sales@minterandrichterdesigns.com.


Great Debate

Note: We have a cornucopia of new content this week. The Taki post is about our new moral imperative to love strangers over our friends and family. Then there is the Sunday podcast up behind the green door. There is a bonus post up this morning on the cult sci-fi move The Matrix. This has gone out to Buy Me A Beer patrons as well.


Almost twenty years ago, John Derbyshire reviewed Kevin MacDonald’s book Culture of Critique for American Conservative. It has one of the best headlines ever written for a right-wing publication. The review itself was not favorable to MacDonald’s theory on Jewish evolutionary strategy, so it has been condemned by anti-Semites, which is a shame because it offers an important insight. For some, the “Jew thing” is a debilitating neurosis that cripples the victim’s ability to reason.

An example of this was on display Saturday night when Jared Taylor debated E. Michael Jones on the question of race. Specifically, the topic was “is race real and does it matter?” Taylor was on the side of race realism and Jones was supposed to be on the side of race denialism. It did not quite work out that way as Jones quickly shifted the conversation away from race to his own theories about the Jews. E. Michael Jones has a very serious case of the Jew thing.

The format was for each man to give a 20-minute opening presentation and then they would take turns responding to one another. Taylor was in the affirmative, so he went first and put on a near perfect presentation explaining the biological reality of race and the societal implications of racial differences. Even for those very familiar with the human sciences, it was an entertaining and informative presentation. It is the sort of thing you can send around to people curious the topic.

Jones opened up with a strange story about daylight savings time in Indiana in order to establish what he calls categories of the mind. These are definitions we invent that have no relation to physical reality. It appears he was trying to reformulate the logical positivists tripartite classification of knowledge. There are things that are tautologically true, things that are true because of an agreed upon set of logical rules and then things that are cognitively meaningless.

Jones reformulates it to be things that are categories of the mind and things he thinks ought to be important. For example, race, regardless of the biological realty behind it, is a category of the mind. It matters only because we think about it, like daylight savings time or the time of day. Catholic dogma, on the other hand, matters whether we think of it or not, so we ought to think about it. Of course, anything that Jones does not like is declared a category of the mind and he dismisses it.

There is an argument that much of what gets put into the category of race is contextual, a result of history and culture. This is the basis of biological denialism on the Left, where they claim differences in the races and sexes are cultural artifacts. The problem with this is that it conflates two related, but cognitively different things. Biological race, in this case, is different from social concepts of race. By conflating the two, biology is made to disappear in the fog of social criticism regarding race.

This was the game Jones was playing. He made a lot of noise about how race is used to harm white societies, so he agued race must be ignored. Here he commits a second logical fallacy. Even if discussions of race are engineered to harm white interests, it does not logically follow that white people should deny the reality of race. This is where the Jew thing begins to pop. Jones asserts that Jews invented the concept of race to harm white people, so the Jew thing requires him to oppose race.

After the opening statements, the second hour was mostly Jones ranting and raving about Jews, even dropping some epithets along the way. Whenever the moderator would return the conversation to the topic, Jones would go off on a rant about how the Jews were the great enemy and we must pretend race is not real in order to defend the white race from Jews. Along the way he conceded everything Taylor said about the reality of race, but Jones kept insisting it should not matter.

In all the noise and distraction what became clear is that Jones knows very little about race or race realism. He also made bizarre claims about the subject. For example, he claimed race was introduced in America by Jews. He also claimed the ancients had no concept of race. This is left-wing nonsense that has no basis in fact. His comments about intelligence revealed he knows nothing about the topic. His claims were the sorts of things that work on stupid people who share his beliefs.

This is the tragedy of the Jew thing. Once the victim is afflicted with it, they can think of nothing other than the subject of their obsession. The debate was supposed to be about race, but Jones kept trying to make it about Jews. Not just about Jews in the racial context either. Like a dog returning to his vomit, Jones kept returning to his pet theory that Judaism is a conspiracy against the world. Not Jews, as according Jones race is not real, but Judaism, which is like a magic spell that he fights alone.

Of course, Jones has his fans. That is the other side of the Jew thing. People with it will overlook anything in those who supply them with content. His mad hatter act is lost on his fans, who only hear the J-word when he speaks. You get the sense that those with the Jew thing will become physically ill if they are not constantly hearing anti-Semitic material, so they need it constantly pipped into their brains. As a result a bellowing crackpot like Jones gets their full attention.

There are people who have reasoned critiques of Jews in Western societies. There are lots of Jews who have addressed the issue. It is a legitimate question, but one gets the sense that the mission of E. Michael Jones is to make it impossible to have a reasoned discussion on the topic. After all, who would want to be lumped in with a mad man who screams at the Passover display at the local grocery store? Jones manages to give bigotry a bad name, which is quite accomplishment.

All of that said, Jones has a point that he may not understand or simply not care to discuss and that is the reality of race is insufficient on its own. If being right about the facts of life mattered, this world would not exist. The radicals would have been routed a long time ago. Public discourse in all human society is about morality. Who are we and what defines us is what matters. Repeating the facts of biology can only matter if they have an impact on the morality of the people.

This has always been the failing of the Right. They have always assumed that once they proved their case, the other side would have no choice but to throw down their weapons and embrace them as brothers. This is not reality. Unless one can connect biological reality with morality, they exist in two separate domains. The race realists have yet to attempt this connection. This should be where the militant Christians step into the breech, but people like Jones make that difficult.

Finally, Jones made a big issue of Taylor’s unwillingness to address the question of Jews within the context of race realism. This is a fair point, but Jones then asserted it was because Taylor is part of the global Jewish conspiracy. This is where you cannot help but wonder if Jones does this to avoid defending his position. It is a distraction to deflect attention from his faulty logic to something else. This could have been an interesting gambit, but the Jew thing got the better of him.

The fact is, race realism makes a lot of sense when comparing Africans with all other human groups. Africans are the great outlier in the human family. It starts to break down when you compare other groups. East Asian are different from Europeans, but they bring none of the social pathology of Africans. What is the argument against mixing Asians with Europeans? What about West Asians and Europeans? This is a valid line off attack on the race realist position.

In the end, the debate is worth watching, if only for Taylor’s opening. It is a pity that Jones is not a more honest and balanced person, as it would be interesting to see someone approach this topic from traditional Christian ethics. If we are ever going to make the leap from facts to values, this is a debate that needs to be had. Otherwise, biological reality will remain ignored, even as we careen into the abyss. Maybe this debate will inspire someone to ponder the subject.


The crackdown by the oligarchs on dissidents has had the happy result of a proliferation of new ways to support your favorite creator. If you like my work and wish to kick in a few bucks, you can buy me a beer. You can sign up for a SubscribeStar subscription and get some extra content. You can donate via PayPal. My crypto addresses are here for those who prefer that option. You can send gold bars to: Z Media LLC P.O. Box 432 Cockeysville, MD 21030-0432. Thank you for your support!


Promotions: We have a new addition to the list. Havamal Soap Works is the maker of natural, handmade soap and bath products. If you are looking to reduce the volume of man-made chemicals in your life, all-natural personal products are a good start. If you use this link you get 15% off of your purchase.

The good folks at Alaska Chaga are offering a ten percent discount to readers of this site. You just click on the this link and they take care of the rest. About a year ago they sent me some of their stuff. Up until that point, I had never heard of chaga, but I gave a try and it is very good. It is a tea, but it has a mild flavor. It’s autumn here in Lagos, so it is my daily beverage now.

Minter & Richter Designs makes high-quality, hand-made by one guy in Boston, titanium wedding rings for men and women and they are now offering readers a fifteen percent discount on purchases if you use this link.   If you are headed to Boston, they are also offering my readers 20% off their 5-star rated Airbnb.  Just email them directly to book at sales@minterandrichterdesigns.com.


Shorting Biden

Note: This coming Saturday, there will be an on-line debate between Jared Taylor and E. Michael Jones. The topic, “Is Race an Important Reality or a Fiction?”, will have Taylor on the race realist side and Jones on the race denialist side. The debate will be LIVE on Saturday, August 21, on EntropyDLive, and Odysee at: 1pm L.A. / 4pm New York / 21:00 London / 22:00 Stockholm.


Way back when the Democratic Party stepped into to halt their voters from picking the wrong option, the immediate response from most observers was that Biden would be a caretaker president if he won. Most people, of course, assumed a man with serious cognitive decline was never going to win election, but 2020 was a good reminder that authoritarian regimes have no respect for the general will. Biden was installed as the short-term answer to their Trump problem.

How long he lasted was assumed to be a function of his ability to stand up and read the lines provided by the script writers. The “long Biden” camp said he would serve out his term, but not run for re-election. Harris or maybe someone else would be the nominee for 2024 with his blessing. The “short-Biden” camp said he would be lucky to make it to the midterm. His cognitive decline would become so obvious that he would be forced out one way or another and Harris would take over.

There was always another element to the politics that was pushed to the background in the excitement to depose Trump. The left-liberals have not been unified in a long time and the Biden-Harris ticket was a compromise between the two main factions. The one faction is the Obama side. If you look at the people around Biden in his campaign and his White House, they are mostly Obama loyalists. On the other hand, Harris was surrounded by Clinton people and remains so as VP.

The Biden-Harris ticket was not only a compromise, but a way to secure the support of the semi-permanent arm of the party, by freezing out the socialists. The apparatchiks would side with Trump before siding with Sanders. They could control Trump on the things that mattered to them. There was no telling what Sanders would do. What Biden-Harris promised to the apparatchiks was a return to the old order, so they would move heaven and earth to get them past public opposition.

Just as the exit from Afghanistan has not followed the script, the Biden-Harris compromise has not worked as hoped. Team Biden is proving to be far more radical than Washington expected. Their Carter-esque domestic agenda is reminding a lot of people of the 1970’s. Serious retail inflation is not transient after all. Instead, it is becoming a part of the public’s calculus. Retail spending has dropped this summer as people adjust to a world of rising prices for essentials.

Then you have the Covid panic which the script said was supposed to end in the summer, in time for Independence Day. They could call it the Trump plague and pretend that Biden had magically cured the nation of this affliction. It is easy to forget that Biden promised it would all be over by July. Instead, the crazies have turned it into a positional good to signal their allegiance to the new religion. This promises to set off more economic and social chaos this fall with new mandates.

The Harris side of the team has been slowly trying to pivot away from what the Biden side has been doing on a wide range of things. Note how hard they worked to keep her away from the border crisis. They see that as a disaster created by the Biden people, so they are hoping to leave that tar baby where it belongs. On the other hand, the Biden side is making sure to keep Harris from getting any positive press. They have been spreading rumors about her in the media to dirty her up.

This friction within the left-liberal wing of the political side of the party would not matter very much if not for the Afghan disaster. While normal people are happy to be free of that mess, the party is roiling over the fall out. The regime media is now full of attacks on the Biden wing. Here is a piece in the NY Times putting the blame for the collapse on the Biden people. There are stories like this all over regime media, painting a sad picture of how Team Biden let down the Afghans.

To sum up, the Afghan debacle has not only increased the tensions within the Biden-Harris coalition, but it has driven a wedge between that coalition and the apparatchiks who do most of the governing. There were leaked stories about how the Harris people were talking openly about the 25th Amendment. Even if true, they will need the support of the apparatchiks as well as congressional Democrats. They can’t just bust into the Oval Office and seize control of the state.

What this summer has shown is the “short Biden” people were probably right about how long Biden remains in office. His condition is so bad he is rarely seen. That is not going to get better. You can be sure the Clintonistas surrounding Harris are scheming with their old friends in the semi-permanent side of the party to engineer a coup to remove Biden sooner rather than later. Recall that the State Department is filled with Clinton loyalists, and they opposed the Afghan withdraw.

The question is when and how is Biden sidelined? If you wanted to give Harris the best chance at reelection, sooner is better than later. This would provide her time to consolidate her hold over the party. On the other hand, if Biden were to drop dead in office, everyone could pretend it was an outpouring of love for him that swept the left-liberals to victory in the midterms. That assumes the full support of the apparatchiks to make sure the vote goes as expected.

The Biden people are not without their options. The one important card they have is that Harris is a weird blend of stupidity and offensiveness. She had all the resources one could want in the primary and managed to drive her own popularity down to zero by simply being herself. Having a dementia patient in the White House is manageable but a bitter ingrate with a chip on her shoulder is a problem. Putting angry DMV lady in the Oval Office could turn out to be bigger disaster than Afghanistan.

Of course, the other option is to find a way to remove Harris first and replace her with someone the party can trust. Then they can pillow Biden before the midterm and run the sympathy script they have ready. This is one of those three cushion shots that makes sense until you think about the options to replace Harris. It reveals the bigger problem with the party. They have run out of people with the minimum of competence, which is how they ended up with Mumbly Joe in the White House.


The crackdown by the oligarchs on dissidents has had the happy result of a proliferation of new ways to support your favorite creator. If you like my work and wish to kick in a few bucks, you can buy me a beer. You can sign up for a SubscribeStar subscription and get some extra content. You can donate via PayPal. My crypto addresses are here for those who prefer that option. You can send gold bars to: Z Media LLC P.O. Box 432 Cockeysville, MD 21030-0432. Thank you for your support!


Promotions: We have a new addition to the list. Havamal Soap Works is the maker of natural, handmade soap and bath products. If you are looking to reduce the volume of man-made chemicals in your life, all-natural personal products are a good start. If you use this link you get 15% off of your purchase.

The good folks at Alaska Chaga are offering a ten percent discount to readers of this site. You just click on the this link and they take care of the rest. About a year ago they sent me some of their stuff. Up until that point, I had never heard of chaga, but I gave a try and it is very good. It is a tea, but it has a mild flavor. It’s autumn here in Lagos, so it is my daily beverage now.

Minter & Richter Designs makes high-quality, hand-made by one guy in Boston, titanium wedding rings for men and women and they are now offering readers a fifteen percent discount on purchases if you use this link.   If you are headed to Boston, they are also offering my readers 20% off their 5-star rated Airbnb.  Just email them directly to book at sales@minterandrichterdesigns.com.


Regimeology

Back during the Cold War, there were people whose job was to figure out what was happening inside the Soviet government. Many were like F.B.I. profilers, in that they were hyped as experts, but just made up stuff to play the role. Others actually tried to read party media to figure out what was happening. These Kremlinologists were well-versed in the “Aesopian language” popular with both dissidents and party officials, so they could connect external clues to internal clues.

One of the many signs that America is authoritarian is that we have to use the same tactics to figure out what is happening with the ruling elite. The uniparty members are mostly just making noises to impress the faction leaders. They are the dancing boys of the American regime. Still, they give a sense of the mood within the factions. The media gives a sense of what is happening with party leadership, especially the semi-permanent elements within the security branches.

This is where the Afghanistan story is useful. There is no denying that it is an embarrassment to the regime. The Biden people were selling this as a smooth transition out of an untenable situation. Instead, they got images of people fleeing for their lives as the Taliban swoops in to capture the capital. The people who say optics don’t matter were once again reminded that they are missing a chromosome. Even in authoritarian regimes, optics count for a great deal, even if it just inside the party.

There is some speculation that elements within the regime were opposed to pulling out of Afghanistan and may have sabotaged the effort. There is evidence that the Pentagon and State Department were opposed, but there are no signs they plotted the collapse of the Afghan government. If they were that clever, they would have figured out how to avoid this in the first place. Instead, this is probably just more of the 4-D chess nonsense that has become popular on-line.

Instead, the media reports suggest those semi-permanent elements within the regime knew Afghanistan was a house of cards and they were prepared to pin the blame on the elected elements of the regime. CNN, of all places, is unloading on the Biden people for their incompetency. The NY Times and Washington Post are taking the neocon line and attacking Biden for leaving the “Afghan allies” to die. This open letter to the White House is like Pravda condemning Kremlin policy in the old days.

The question is why did the Biden people push forward with a policy they knew the rest of the party opposed? This is where you may have some 4-D chess, in that there may be a third man in the relationship. Clearly, the Biden people did not see this coming, so they must have been getting bogus advice from the Pentagon and State Department or at least elements within those silos. Maybe this a way to discredit the foreign policy establishment to justify sweeping changes.

This is the clue in the Biden speech. He made clear that this move was about closing the door on the past to repositioning for the future. That is coded language to mean the old Bush era foreign policy is dead or that is the plan. Coupled with the quiet abandonment of Ukraine, the old neocon obsession with their old demons will no longer be the priority of the new foreign policy. Given the infestation of neocons in regime media, this would explain the media attacks on Biden over Afghanistan.

The new foreign policy will focus on China. Little reported during all the excitement of removing Trump and installing Biden is that the Biden people have embraced the Trump China policy with few changes. They are enforcing the trade polices imposed by Robert Lighthizer during the Trump years and doing so aggressively. They are following the Trump position on the genocide in Xinjiang, which is a big deal. They have also allowed US representatives to travel to Taiwan without special permission.

The stakes could not be any higher in this intra-party conflict. The crusades against Islam have been very lucrative for the military industrial complex, both in financial opportunities as well as prestige. A trade war with China is not as sexy for them and not as remunerative. The State Department, of course, is geared to fight the old enemies so a sea change in priorities is very bad for business. For example, having old relatives in Ukraine is suddenly less important than Chinese language skills.

It is too soon to tell how this will unfold. Old regimes get loud, preachy and impervious to contrary facts. We see that with the American regime. The factions are led by fossils from a bygone era. We see the elected side on television, but the leadership of the other factions is just as ossified. They may be younger than the elected leaders, but their minds are frozen in time. No one in party leadership seems to be aware of what is happening outside the strongholds of the regime.

One possibility is that Afghanistan is treated like the party treated Khrushchev’s handling of Cuba in the 1960’s. The party was happy to treat the affair as a disaster, so they could remove him from office. We are already hearing whispers that Biden’s fragile state is the cause of the Afghan debacle. The disappearance of Harris the last few months is another clue. Taking her out of the spotlight keeps her clean and allows everyone to forget about her being an obnoxious idiot.

All we can know at this point is that the regime is very fragile right now. On the one side is a faction locked in the past and staffed by incompetents. They were the people who spent 20 years creating the new Afghanistan. On the other side is the gerontocracy desperately trying to cling to life. Then you have the new vibrant young guns who want to show off what their learned in grievance studies. There is deep tension within the American ruling regime that promises to get worse.


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