james's blog

Into The Valley of Debt

I would like to tie together three subjects that are in the forefront at the moment with three separate essays and argue how they are parts of a whole. Three areas of capitalism are involved; the banking/investment/insurance or financial industry; the oil and resources industry; and the armaments and military services industry. These industries are, of course, controlled by the same group of people and so are readily co-ordinated and this should not surprise us. Indeed, we should expect it. The three subjects or issues breathlessly and inaccurately reported to us are the financial meltdown/bailout fiasco, the moves for a One World Currency and the ever building number and intensity of wars in the the Middle East and Central Asia for the control of oil. The “whole” I speak of is the domination or rulership of the whole world or more succinctly, One World Government.

This first part concerns the financial industry and the derivatives meltdown and the attendant bailout scandal. This essay is in large part a rewrite of part of James Lieber's excellent article, “What Cooked The World's Economy”. I have attempted to expand on some of his points with some logical deductions and also some opinions together with a few added bits of information from the public domain.
All quotes in this essay come from the above article and the first quote will start at the “bottom line”-

“The bottom line in this scandal is that fantastically wealthy entities positioned themselves to make unfathomable fortunes by betting that average Americans - Joe Six-Packs and hockey moms - would fail.“
Bearing this in mind will help makes sense of what I write below, I hope!
So after that introduction, let us deconstruct the scam.


It struck me, at first, as very odd that the derivative scam artists are walking around very much alive. They have caused some major financial institutions that were very much a part of the establishment to go belly up apparently because of their reckless yet deliberate actions. Personally, I would rather scam the Gambino family than mess with the likes of the Rockefellers or the Rothschilds. These people are seriously attached to money. Bankers have a habit of washing up on the ebb tide and or dying from heart attacks in the peak of health or leaving suicide notes that don't sound like them and swinging from bridges. We've had a rash of them over the last few years though they didn't get much play in the MSM, surprisingly . . . not. So how come the likes of Joseph Cassano of AIG Financial Products are not only alive and still in employment but also receiving huge bonuses. Something is seriously wrong with this picture, is it not?

From this evidence, one must immediately conclude that the Rockefellers and Rothschilds et.al. have not been burnt which means that they were not involved in any way. But given the interconnectedness of everything financial and their attraction to huge profits, this would seem highly unlikely, indeed. The other option is that they were involved but on the winning side. This would account for Cassano et. al. remaining alive after (or even before) the collapse became public knowledge.

Not only are they still alive, but they are still in employment at the scene of the various disasters and still at the helm. For this situation to continue, the apparently incompetent fraudsters must be under the control and protection of whomever is benefitting from this situation, past and present. So all this would indicate there is still evidence to conceal and James Lieber quotes William Black, a former financial regulator, suggesting that very thing, ' "Don't count on them keeping records for long," Black warns. "It's time to get out the subpoenas."'
/This would also account for the obscene and PR risky bonuses these snake oil salesmen have received. But I will be suggesting that there is more to it and that is that the derivative scam is still in process and the “backsheesh” is to ensure that the salesmen stay in place for the time being, at least, as they still have work to do. After the party's over, though, they may have to avoid taking rides on boats; or flights in small planes; or bending over bridges . . . or bending over anything, really.

I found James Lieber's article very illuminating. Crucial to my understanding from his article is this,
'“Derivatives weren't initially evil. They began as insurance policies on large loans. A bank that wished to lend money to a big, but shaky, venture, like what Ford or GM have become, could hedge its bet by buying a credit derivative (insurance policy) to cover losses if the debtor defaulted.”

A market or trading forum was needed to facilitate the selling of these loan insurance policies (a.k.a. Credit Derivatives or CDs or just “derivatives”) on a large scale and thereby create a new financial services industry (and new profit centre) and was duly supplied in the form of a computer network. From Leiber again,

“the company that put the basic hardware and software together for pricing and clearing derivatives was Bloomberg. It was quite expensive for a financial institution - say, a bank - to get a Bloomberg machine and receive the specialized training required to certify analysts who would figure out the terms of the insurance. These Bloomberg terminals, originally called Market Masters, were first installed at Merrill Lynch in the late 1980s.
Subsequently, thousands of units have been placed in trading and financial institutions; they became the cornerstone of Michael Bloomberg's wealth, marrying his skills as a securities trader and an electrical engineer.

It's an open question when or if he or his company knew how they would be misused over time to devastate the world's economy.”

The scale of this operation, even granting that it was builtup over years, together with the fact that Bloomberg's company is privately owned, suggests to me that Bloomberg needed lots of finance to not only develop and provide the hardware and software but also for promotion and, critical in this industry, he would have needed influential sponsorship to put this system in place and the most likely place that would come from is within this same industry. If I were investigating this meltdown, one of the first questions I would want answered is, “who financed this time bomb?” I suspect the answer would be very revealing and would be at least one of the major anonymous “counterparties”.

So how was it a time bomb? How did legitimate insurance on a loan mutate so badly? Well, it soon became apparent (if it wasn't the purpose from the begining) that with the insurance (derivative) in place, there was more money to be made from a loan going bad and collecting on the insurance than if the loan was secure and paid off in due course. Particularly if the loan could be insured for more than it was worth or was purchased for. Coupled with the fact that the loan could be insured multiple times and the fact that you didn't even need to own the loan yourself. So if you insure a loan a hundred times over so that when it falls over, you are paid its full book value one hundred times. This is more than a “goldmine”; this is an exponential formula to unlimited wealth if the fabulous profits are parlayed a few times. Imagine betting on the winning number on a roulette table and letting the winnings ride and having the number come up again . . . and then keep on repeating this process with no pit-boss (or regulator) to shut the table down!
Now think in trillions!

But this jackpot payoff is dependent on the insured loan going bad. So now there is a market for bad or high risk loans and it is an exponentially ever-growing market because once a derivative buyer or “counterparty” (as he is known in the business) has collected big time on his “investment” he naturally wants to plough it all back into the same glorious, no risk, bonanza. But our counterparty's capital has grown like Topsy and he needs a hundred bad loans this time. How many bad loans will he need after a few circuits on this magic merry-go-round? Clearly the “Bad Loan” business needs to go “bigtime” and to do that the financial regulations and supervision need to be eradicated. Bye-bye Glass-Steagall Act. Hello Commodity Futures Modernization Act (CFMA). And thank you, Bill Clinton.

This need for loans to be defaulted on is one of the reasons why Obama and his backers on Wall Street will not help rescue ordinary, but over committed, people struggling to stay in their homes or pay off their credit cards. There are still derivatives in play to be collected on.
Lieber again, “By plunking down millions of dollars, a hedge fund could reap billions once these fatally constructed securities plunged. Again, the funds did not need to own the securities; they just needed to pay for the derivatives - the insurance policies for the securities. And they could pay for them again and again. This was known as replicating. It became an addiction. “

It's not over, either. To repeat, its still in play and there are still loans to fall over and there are still payoffs to collect for the mysterious counterparties whom the Fed and everyone else involved refuse to identify.
“What about the $600 trillion in credit derivatives that are still out there, sucking vital liquidity and credit out of the system? It's the tyrannosaurus in the mall, the one that made Henry Paulson, the former Treasury Secretary who looks like Daddy Warbucks, get down on his knees and beg Nancy Pelosi for a bailout.
Even with the bailout, no one can get their arms around this monster. Obviously, the $600 trillion includes not only many unseemly replicated death bets, but also some benign derivatives that creditors bought to hedge risky loans. Instead of sorting them out, the Bush administration tried to protect them all, while keeping the counterparties happy and anonymous.”

Note well that last clause, “while keeping the counterparties happy and anonymous.” And Obama is in the continuity business here as well, it seems.

But let me backtrack a little to how the first half of the scam operated before the government intervention and the second half began.
The challenge was how to do it on a mass scale. It needed to pull most of the financial industry in because the object was to firstly, loot whole economies and secondly, set the stage for a one world currency which would give the issuers of this currency a de facto world government. If you control the issue of money then you control the economy. You can run it up and you can run it down through the simple expedient of how much money you put into circulaton or withdraw from circulation via bank lending policy. With the control of the economy, you control the government and more besides because you can buy and sell anything and anybody you please.

So they needed a respectable and respected front to lead the way for others to follow; to assure the nervous Nellies that success lay in joining “The Charge of the Blight Brigade into the Valley of Debt”.
What better vehicle than AIG, the biggest insurance company in the world. You are probably protesting that this company is “one of their own”. Yes, but many a fortune has been made from bankrupting a company, particularly, one's own. Greenburg, the head of AIG, established the demolition team in London, AIG Financial Products by name. I suggest this was not only to escape the rather non-existent regulatory control but also to escape internal detection and intervention from senior executives at the parent company who might not be too exicted about the prospect of their careers, status and livelihoods going up in smoke and so "out" the operation before its time is due. Lieber points out,

“ . . . William Black, an effective federal litigator and regulator during the 1980s savings-and-loan scandal . . . . . has testified to Congress about the current crisis and paints it as "control fraud" at every level. Such fraud flows from the top tiers of corporations - typically CEOs and CFOs, who control perverse compensation systems that reward cheating and volume rather than quality, and circumvent standard due diligence such as underwriting and accounting. For instance, AIGFP's Cassano reportedly rebuffed AIG's internal auditor.”

And also, “In 2000, AIG asked the New York State Insurance Department to decide if it wanted to regulate them, but the department's superintendent, Neil Levin, said no. The question was not posed by AIGFP, but by the company's main office through its general counsel”.
Perhaps head office was trying to get the regulator to do what it ironically couldn't i.e. audit its own subsiduary.

With the solid looking facade of AIG in place all that's needed now is an outside “seal of good housekeeping” for the bait which was provided by Standard & Poors and the other rating agencies. The bait made up of mortgages, credit card debt and sundry other things and otherwise known as CDOs (Collateralised Debt Obligations) was sold to,
“Banks like Wachovia, National City, Washington Mutual, and Lehman Brothers (who) loaded up on this financial trash, which soon proved to be practically worthless. Today, those banks are extinct” (unlike the ratings agencies)

Presumably these banks did not take out CDs (Credit Derivatives) on their new assets, the CDOs. Why not? If they had have, they would be in clover now and not in bankrupcy.
Either these institutions were kept in ignorance and were set up by their fellow bankers to fail with the view to taking out the competition.
Or, they were gutted and offered up as sacrificial lambs; that the derivatives were, indeed, taken out on the bad loans (CDOs) by the principals of these firms but held in other companies away from the creditors and eventual liquidators. All sorts of other obligations would be conveniently voided, too, and the victims (shareholders and creditors) wouldn't realise that it was deliberate and thinking that Lehman Brothers, for instance, wouldn't deliberately bring down the house on top of their heads like Samson did; and the wholesale looting put down to incompetence instead of larceny.

I think it likely that both these scenarios were in play with different individual companies and for both the reasons outlined above.

But this bomb is a time bomb and these institutions (and also private investors) are loaded up with these explosive bad loans, we need a trigger to set the chain reaction off. This was supplied by the banks tightening up consumer credit causing the CDOs to start popping off and then . . .
“the raters rushed to downgrade them to junk status. This occurred suddenly with more than 4,000 CDOs in the first quarter of 2008 - the financial community now regards them as "toxic waste."
To top it all off, JP MorganChase and others delivered the “coup de grace” by freezing interbank lending with instantaneous catastrophic results.

Part one of the scam was complete by this stage. The fiasco had now entered the public arena through the media coverage. And Part Two was about to start.

The Fed went to Congress to appeal for funds to ease the “credit crisis” which had been deliberately created, of course. After initially baulking, Congress handed over the funds and the Fed promptly gave it to the insurers such as AIG who almost certainly turned this money over to the derivative holders, the anonymous “counterparties” i.e. the scammers and builders of this massive operation. This has to be be part of the original plot because AIG and other insurers simply had nowhere near the capital to pay out on the derivatives and the whole operation only makes sense if the scammers can collect which means the government was meant to pay and pay big right from the beginning. This was the prize, the goal of the whole exercise And the government did pay up and is continuing to pay up, what's more. The scam is still in operation.

In the tight monetary conditions i.e. tight lending practices of the banks to the hoi poloi, loans are continuing to fall over and derivatives are continuing to be triggered and are continuing to be payed out and Congress, via the Fed, is continuing to fund it all. The strugglers out there in mortgageland will not be helped in any meaningful way because that would stop this process that provides the continuing shower of funds down on the pigs at the trough.

But it gets even better because the scammers now have enormous funds to buy up all those cheap assets that are up for fire sales by their victims amongst whom are their once upon a time competitors. And they are, no doubt, hoping to convert the bulk of this ill gotten plunder into assets before inflation caused by all this extra money has its effect on prices. The coming inevitable inflation is the cost that everyone will bear. Any savings will effectively be halved in value as prices double or triple or . . . .

I think it is worth taking a side trip to explain the mechanism of inflation. Initiates of this mysterious knowledge can take a break here and rejoin us further down-
The value of one dollar (in theory and also roughly in practice) is calculated by the wealth of a country (which is conveniently measured by the GDP of the country) divided by the number of dollars in existence. The GDP is the amount of wealth collectively created in any given year within the nation. Given that the GDP will only vary by a few percent (if that) year to year, the amount of dollars on issue is crucial to the value of each dollar. i.e. whether there is inflation or not. If the amount of dollars on issue is doubled then the value of each one is halved. There is a simple symmetry involved. To say it another way, if the amount of money on issue is doubled then the prices of everything must double too. You will need twice as many dollars to buy the same thing so each dollar is worth half of what it was before. Or from yet another perspective, the extra money will compete for the goods on sale and thus push the prices up until an equilibrium between the amount of dollars in circulation matches the collective or sum price of everything that it can buy.

There is yet another variation on how to see this relationship and that is through the the realisation that in a stable economy, the money supply not only matches the value of the GDP or wealth of the country but that this GDP is what gives the currency or money supply its value. This is what backs the face value of the currency. This value belongs the citizens of the country as a whole as they largely own it. Yet it is “borrowed” by the bankers to give their issued money value. But that's another scam for another essay which will look at the One World Currency. But bearing this relationship in mind between GDP and Money Supply/Currency will be very helpful in understanding the scams involved with the proposed, and perhaps immanent, One World Currency.

Anyway, back to the topic of this essay (and to the initiates amongst us), all this is to say that the bailouts give massive dollar amounts to the already wealthy and every one pays for it because, for one, the value of the dollars everyone else is holding goes down to accommodate and facilitate this shift of wealth.

In summary, with AIG and JP Morgan in the lead, insurers, investment houses and banks created subprime loan assets and had the rating agencies give them prime rating. These subprime assets had higher subprime returns with apparent prime safety. This was irresistable bait for the greedy. The anonymous “counterparties” behind the AIG/JP Morgan push insured these subprime loans (CDOs) with derivatives (CDs or Credit Derivatives) betting that the loans would fall over and thus collecting handsomely. And in the process, bleeding the above companies and others dry and then bleeding the whole nation dry through the government and its bailouts which was the real and ultimate "mark" all along.

The concept was simple. However, the implementation took some doing over many years including dismantling the regulatory provisions and hobbling the oversight bodies.

With this information, looking back over those years makes it plain that it was all deliberately engineered. The same cast of characters are present at every step; building, priming, selling and setting off the charges and then lobbying excitedly and making threats for the compensation or more correctly, the payoff.

Many privately wealthy people have lost much of their capital by buying CDOs directly without attendant derivatives or by investing in companies that got caught with them.

Many people of more modest means have lost investments, too, and seen the value of their superannuation plummet, as well. Their Mutual Funds have been caught with CDOs and also hold shares that have lost value through the same process.

And lastly, everyone, again, will suffer from the coming inflation and from future increased taxes to pay off the government debts incurred to make the filthy rich obscenely rich.

And all this through a simple scam. To repeat James Lieber's bottom line -
““The bottom line in this scandal is that fantastically wealthy entities (aided and abetted by both political parties ed.) positioned themselves to make unfathomable fortunes by betting that average Americans - Joe Six-Packs and hockey moms - would fail.“

I believe this is called “anti-social behaviour”.

With the economy and population financially bloodied, beaten and fearful (and it ain't over yet by any means) we are all open to being lead over the cliff of a One World Currency and then it's a freefall down into the abyss of a One World Government.

That's the bad news. The good news is that we aren't over the cliff, yet. And we know what's happening and who's doing it and who not to turn to for help. And that's a good start.

"Step Into My Parlour", said The Spider to The Fly.

After giving M.K. Bhadrakumar a boost the other day I am now regretting it. He writes in “Obama may cede Iran's nuclear rights” (thanks, McJ, nice map!) that the US may offer to forego opposition to Iran's nuclear power program in exchange for agreeing to buy their enriched uranium fuel from Kazakhstan who would warehouse and supply it under “international” supervision or control. He goes on to describe (but not identify) quite a web of intrigue and a list of characters involved.

But Bhadrakumar seems to be spinning a web of his own. He prevaricates in introducing the topic (the web) and the chief characters (can we call them spiders?). For instance, “It (the US) sought a rethink of Washington's insistence on Iran jettisoning its pursuit of uranium enrichment as a pre-requisite of commencement of direct talks between the two countries.” Talks about what? Talks about “jettisoning its pursuit of uranium enrichment.” It's circular and nonsensical, no? Yes, but that is how Israel and the US “negotiate” but Bhadrakumar reframes it as something sensible or reasonable.
And there's more, “This was borne out of a growing realization that the US insistence was no longer tenable.” It would have been much clearer and upfront to say, “the bullying didn't work so we'll move to plan B”. The article seeks to present the US Administration as (now) being reasonable in their approach and demeanour. But since when do leopards change their spots?

McJ asks (somewhat rhetorically, perhaps), “I'm curious as to what the reason is that it is 'OK' for Kazakhstan to enrich and store uranium for fuel and not Iran”.
The implication in the article (and in the proposal from the US presumably) is that Kazakhstan is not going to produce nuclear weapons. But Iran has made that same commitment over and over. The Ayatollah Khamenei has even issued a fatwa against their developing them i.e. they are against God. How does Nurusultan Nazarbayev of Kazakhstan compare with that? Here's the Islamic Human Rights Commission view on him, “government oil and gas revenues, along with secret bribery payments from US oil company Exxon Mobil , amounting to one billion dollars were diverted to secret swiss bank accounts controlled by Nazarbayev and other senior Kazakh autocrats.
Following the freezing of Swiss bank accounts, Nazarbayev made a January 2003 trip to Switzerland, speculated to ensure his immunity from prosecution in return for testimonials against other senior Kazakh government officials.”
I think we can safely say, “he's in the bag”. And there's torture, too, but, hey, everybody is into that these days.

How could the Iranians ever be persuaded to trust Nazarbayev? They can't. Bhadrakuman describes him as “the veteran Kazakh statesman”. He may well be a veteran and be as cunning as a shithouse rat but he is no statesman and the Iranians would know that full well. And the Japanese are hardly neutral go-betweens. So what's gong on here?

In international diplomacy, nobody is honest. There's always a hidden agenda. So how do you get a hidden agenda past your opponent when every one is looking for it? Provide a decoy. So, what's the decoy here? It might be a number of things, of course, but I'll suggest one; the Iranians might see that the US is trying to use this “uranium bank” as a wedge between Russia, China and Iran. The Americans might be hoping that the Iranians will see this and (though they will never agree to “the Bank”) will try and use the situation to winkle more nuclear (or other) concessions out of the Russians. Meanwhile, this whole piece of theatre is occupying the Iranian leadership's attention (and everybody else's) and distracting them from something else that's going on; something that is very much to their detriment. And that something may well be the large troop and materiel buildups taking place on their borders right now.

There has been a recent troop increase in Iraq as a result of the “surge” and now there is a similar buildup on Iran's other flank in Afghanistan together with transit agreements entered into with Azerbaijan and Turkmenistan on their northern border and Kazakhstan, in turn, behind them. Tehran is in the north of the country and is roughly equidistant from Baghdad in Iraq, Baku in Azerbaijan, Ashabad in Turkmenistan and a little further away, but still close, is Herat in Afghanistan. This is the Silk Road (or part of it) and further on down this Road is China.

It is a standard tactic that when you are about ready to attack your enemy, you start peace negotiations. Remember Saakashvili telling South Ossetia that he has renounced military intervention as an option in Georgia's dispute with them? Within days, he attacked. This would certainly have been on instructions from the US and Israel.

It seems, too, that there was much more to the attack on South Ossetia than was first apparent. From “Eurasian Crossroads: The Caucasus In US-NATO War Plans - by Rick Rozoff,
“Last September Russian envoy to NATO Dmitry Rogozin said that "Russian intelligence had obtained information indicating that the Georgian military infrastructure could be used for logistical support of U.S. troops if they launched an attack on Iran. (This would presumably been obtained from Georgian military barracks raided by the Russians in their reciprocal invasion).
"'This is another reason why Washington values Saakashvili's regime so highly,' Rogozin said, adding that the United States had already started 'active military preparations on Georgia's territory' for an invasion of Iran."(31)
Other Russian sources affirmed that Russia's defeat of Georgia last August preempted a planned attack on Iran, and commentators in the Caucasus have speculated that had Saakashvili succeeded in South Ossetia not only would he have immediately turned on Abkhazia but Azerbaijan would have launched a similar assault on Nagorno-Karabakh which would have led to Armenia certainly, Turkey probably and Iran possibly being dragged into a regional conflagration.”

Between North and South Ossetia is the Caucasian Mountains with the Roki Tunnel the main link between them. If South Ossetia were in Georgian hands and the tunnel blocked, Russia would be severely handicapped in coming through Georgia with troops and tanks (more info in the comments section as well) to Iran's aid and attacking both NATO's supply lines and their invading troops from behind.

But back to the negotiating table; or is it a stage? The proposal over nuclear fuel also doesn't make sense when held up against the US and Israel's major motivation; their goal of dominating the whole world, the New American Century and with, perhaps, yet another “Pearl Harbour”. The prime motivation or goal must always be borne in mind.

Iran is very definitely the next stepping stone to that goal. Control of Iran's oil and gas is crucial and this leopard ain't about to change its spots any day soon.

On The Evil In This World

On The Evil In This World.

I have to note first that in the following essay I have used masculine pronouns throughout. I have often wondered what it would be like for a woman to read about somone she is supposed to, or wants to, identify with only to be faced with “He” and “His” all the time. I have tried it by reversing it and it feels very exclusionary. Our language doesn't seem to have an answer to this problem. It is particularly unfortunate, in this instance, because I will be talking about victims and women, as a group, suffer much more from victimisation than men do. Also, of all the brave people I personally know, all bar one of them are women. In my defence, I can only point out that all the abusers and exploiters mentioned are also exclusively male. Never-the-less, women readers have my apologies in advance.

I will also be arguing for the existence of a benevolent God. I have come to this understanding through my experiences and through Christianity but I do not want to imply that I endorse any denomination. All the denominations I have had anything to do with have caused more harm than good through ignorance and hypocrisy. Mostly, I believe, it is the pathology of power behind the hypocrisy and wilfullignorance. My advice is to approach them with caution, if at all. So with those two qualifications out of the way (and if I haven't put you off already!), let's into it.

In another thread on this blog, some of us were discussing a brilliant, brilliant article from Joe Bageant and during the course of this, McJ made this comment,
“I would be interested in anyone has thoughts on how 'evil' exists. If God permeates us all, does evil come from one rejecting an orientation towards this 'animating spirit'? “
To which Tsisageya added this,
“I might add that, after awhile, there comes a point of no return---or forgiveness, if you will. I mean if a living being rejects/destroys life itself, then wouldn't that lead to death, hence, separation from God?”

I said I would like to comment on this but would need a little time to think it through and arrange it or to “get all my ducks in a row”! The following is the result:-

I'd like to go back to what I mentioned in the comment on the previous thread about the source of life and build up my argument from there.
Biologists and pathologists are unable to determine the source of life within any organism including humans. They can't establish where in the body the source of life is or, indeed, what it is. Nor can they establish what's not there after death. So if the source of life is not within the body, it must be without. The source cannot be located elsewhere in the world, either, so one has to conclude it comes from outside this world, outside the physical universe. A power from outside this physical realm that animates it and gives it life and is therefore integral with it must come from the same source as the physical creation. This being so, then it must come from God. If GOd is the ultimate source of life, then we are alive because God is alive in us. If God is alive in us then he must feel everything we feel including, and especially, our pain.

Now God is only creative and therefore cannot be destructive. Or as John says (1John 1:5) “God is light and in him there is no darkness at all”. If there were darkness in him, then God would be at war with himself. This is impossible. He would be doing violence to himself and denying his own nature. I have argued this further in “Introduction to the Enemy”.
But there is “darkness' in this world and it seems to be at war with all that is creative, everywhere. We read everyday in our news countless people being killed to satiate the greed of a few men. Our governments waging war against largely defenceless people for oil, uranium, gold, diamonds, water and goodness knows what else. They are destroying the world so they can rule it. They are destroying God's creation so that they can rule it in God's place. This creation is not only the physical territory and its resources but also includes all us human beings. This small handful of men behind our various governments want to be God. But they're not God! Are they mad? Yes, indeed. Insanity is being detached from reality i.e. deluded. And the ultimate delusion would have to be that you are God or that you could be God.

It reminds me of that great scene in “Life of Brian” where Eric Idle's character wants to be called Loretta from now on (fair enough) and to be acknowledged as having the “right” to have a baby (not so easy)! Eric's slippery grip on reality is humorous because of its lunacy. Unfortunately, these madmen that rule us and their lunacy cannot be laughed off as easily. If only they could be.

So how did we get to this sorry state when we were created by God in whom there is no darkness and created in his likeness? God created us with free will. We know this because we have choice and so we can, amongst a multitude of other things, choose him or reject him. To choose him is to accept the reality that he made and part of that reality is that the world is here for us to use and not to exploit. And to continue to use the world we have to leave it in a sustainable state. Sustainability must be a part of the plan. Also part of the world are our fellow human beings. They are here to help us and to be helped by us and not to be exploited, either. If God made us, and made us with free will, then he is into relationships. That being so, he would expect us to have relationships amongst each other which would reflect his (hoped for) relationship with us; supportive and non-exploitative relationships which also means sustainable relationships.

Implicit in granting us each free will, God also granted us authority over our own lives. It follows then that clearly we cannot have authority over anyone else's life. This is where all religions and religious leaders go wrong whether they realise it or not. If we try to gain authority or power over someone else, we are going against God's will for that person and ourselves. If we are then rebelling against God, then we are also rebelling against reality. If this is true, then we could expect things to start messing up because we are not driving this machine as it is supposed to be driven i.e. the way God designed this world and us in it to function. Are things screwing up? Absolutely and bigtime! And what's more, the last thing this situation is, is sustainable.

On an individual level, if we are rejecting God's will for us by exploiting others would we not be then rejecting God and some of the life he has for us? Yes, I believe so (and priests and pastors are by no means immune from this, either). I see evidence of it in increased stress levels that lead to increased disease and mental anguish and violent behaviour. Crucially, it removes the joy from one's life; the pure, literally invigorating, “joie de vivre” that is free from any other agenda. The closest the exploiter will get to this is glee which is a very bittersweet thing. There is always hatred at the back of it. The other quality to disappear from your life is peace; that ease that comes from being at ease with oneself.

So we have free will to choose God and God's reality with its sustainability or reject it. But given that God's reality is the only game in town, the only reality we have, we would be crazy to reject it. But we do and we are. The craziness comes from the rejection little by little. The really sad part is that a small rejection of reality, of going against God's will or desire for us all, results in a small amount of craziness because we tell ourselves it's right or worse, God's will. We are practising delusion and this same craziness prevents us from appreciating the little bit of sanity, the little bit of connection to reality we just lost. I don't know if you have ever tried to reason with someone who is seriously deluded or psychotic, but it is just hopeless. Or tried to talk sense to an addict who is still on the way up and thinks he is in control. Again, hopeless. We can readily recognise people who are crazier than we are and can understand why they are angry and driven (without any joy or peace) but it is a little harder to get a handle on people who are saner than we. They often look simple or guileless which can appear foolish or perhaps just serene. But it is very hard to understand why; to “get” what they “get”, if you know what I mean.

I have said before that I believe that the craziness that leads us to believe we can (and even should!) have power over others is addictive and has the same deluded pathology as any other addiction and that we all have the potential to go down this path. I have talked more at length about this addictive behaviour in “Introduction to the System”. What inhibits most people from going down this path to any great extent is something else God gave us, a conscience. You may think that conscience is a cultural thing but it is remarkably similar across all cultures. And nevermind that all cultures say one thing but do another. So we are all tempted to emulate God and seek power over others (even though God has this power he doesn't use it) but we have to actively reject God to do so by going against our conscience. It is definitely a choice. It most probably won't be verbalised but it is never-the-less a choice. And God has allowed us to do that. Why, when the consequences are so predictable and always bad? Because of love. You can't love someone if you don't have free will i.e. free will not to love that person. And you can't love someone fully if they don't have free will, either, because love, at its most complete, is a relationship and in this free will, you have to be equal.

So we've covered free will and rejecting God and the craziness and the destruction that comes from it but does this account for the evil in the world? I suppose for those that think evil is simply an absence of good, it does. But for those that perceive evil to be more than that, and I am one of them, it doesn't. For those of us that look into the atrocities of genocide and systematic rape and torture, it strikes us that something outside our understanding is going on here. Something is terribly wrong. It's much more than an argument that has gotten out of hand. There is a malevolence present. From here, I have to leave the logical argument behind and express my opinions and talk of the experiences that have shaped them. They will either strike you as true or not.

For those that have encountered evil, it is more than an idea; it is a force and, what is more, you can feel it. I have seen and experienced evil up close. I have seen people brutally murdered for the thrill of power and, quite literally, as an overt act of war against God. I have seen a satanic cult at work and, believe me, it was and they still are (as there are many of them throughout our societies) at war against God. The cult members, at times, displayed levels of hatred few would believe possible. They are at the extreme end of the psychopathic spectrum. It is the demonic force acting within them. How do I know this force is demonic? Because I once saw the demon that was in one of these cult members. It was total hatred. The force of that hatred hit me like a bow wave before it.

This demonic force wants to destroy everything that God created. It cannot destroy God so it will destroy everything that God loves. The more “good” a person is the more anathema they are to the demonic. The more helpless and innocent the victim, the better they like it because it is all the more an affront to God and to those that side with him. It is also an attempt to overwhelm and dominate the rest of us. That is its purpose from the demonic point of view and it is the demonic that is driving these offenders. So if you have ever heard yourself asking, “How on earth could someone possibly DO that?!”, now you know.

People are very imperfect as we all know but most of us would like to be and, indeed, try to be better; to be more helpful or more considerate or whatever. Some of us, though, don't try to be better or to co-operate more. At base these people are acting out of fear whether they realise it or not. These people can be reached through example and through cajoling and even a little behaviour modification or “re-education”such as isolation from the rest of us should they become convicted criminals to encourage their understanding of the need for co-operation and socialization. You won't change them through punishment, though, save for the isolation should it be employed. The desired behaviour has to be modelled to them (as distasteful as that may sound to many!).

But there are others, still, who are extremely destructive and who are beyond reach; beyond change. Psychiatry calls them sociopaths. We, in common everyday language, call them psychopaths. These people need to be isolated from the rest of society as other criminals (if they are ever convicted) until they exhibit change and as they never change, this means permanently. While maintaining this separation, they should be treated very humanely (because we are into humane treatment for everybody . . . aren't we?!)

How do some people become psychopaths? It is thought by some psychiatrists and research psychologists (and satanists, too, I might add!) that it comes through childhood abuse. It may appear to be severe or not. What it will always be about though, in my opinion, is a decision for or against compassion for others. Either the abused child decides, “So this is how the game is played. This is the totality of the world. You are either a victim or an abuser. I don't want to be a victim so I'll become an abuser”. This child will not see a third alternative. This child becomes a psychopath, I believe, because from here on in he has to push down the voice of his conscience and as the child is still very young and developing, it can be done very effectively.

Or alternatively, the child victim may reject being what he hates, an abuser, and decide to be a victim. This child probably will not see a third alternative either, at least not for the time being. But later, he might. And that third alternative is to be free. To reject the abusers' view of the world as divided neatly into perps and victims with no other options. To be free, the child, or more likely the adult by now, has to let go of the burning desire for revenge and hand it over to God to deal with. We simply aren't equipped to deal with it. It will destroy the victim as surely as if he had become an abuser because he will be harbouring violence in his heart. And violence is violence no matter how you might justify it and its effects are just the same. I know this truth from bitter experience. Revenge will often cloak itself as a desire for justice for oneself and for others so one has to be very discerning.

We, as a society, need for our own protection to identify and avoid or, better, isolate socially these psychopaths. I could list a string of tell-tales to look for but most of it is covered by:-
1. watching out for liars; three strikes and they're out! Be wary of people who are more charming than the situation calls for and

2. look for what a friend of mine calls “fish-eyes”. These are people who have no life in their eyes. You look in but get nothing back. They are completely blank.

3. “By their fruits you shall know them”, as someone wisely once said. If you suspect someone of being a psychopath, seek out people from their past to talk to and dig into their history.

4. Then share your knowledge with others. Stick to the facts. I wouldn't label them as psychopaths unless the person you are talking to is very familiar with the term and the condition. I would, instead, focus on the chronic lying and on them displaying no conscience and what that means.

It is right to be angry with these people, or more correctly, with what they have done and are doing but revenge is not an option. We don't know what we would have done in their shoes come decision time. I was treated in ways few people can imagine and I didn't decide to throw my lot in with the abusers. But to this day, I don't know how I chose the way I did. I don't take credit for it because I don't know what was at work in me and because of that I am not about to blame someone who chose differently. This still calls for their enforced separation from the rest of us, not as revenge but for our safety. It is or responsibility to keep ourselves, our families and our neighbours safe from harm. It is God's responsibility to judge and apply retribution, not ours. To do so would be to act in God's place and that is the start of the slippery slope that the perpetrators started on. Do we want to end up in their shoes?

As I have found out, if you entertain, or worse embrace, revenge and violence no matter how much you may think it justified, you will hurt people you didn't intend to. There are always unintended and unforeseen consequences. The only predictable aspect of violence is that it will lead to more violence. And from a satanic point of view, that is its purpose - ever more violence and destruction.

The Afghanistan and Iraqi wars were sold to the public as classic “bait and switch” gambits. They wouldn't have worked if the public at large didn't have violence in their hearts to start with; if they didn't have such concepts as righteous or redemptive violence within themselves. You see? It's a trap. It's always a trap. Judged from the results, there is no "good" violence.

When I talk of violence, I am not talking about the use of physical force needed to defend yourself. I am talking about anything that goes the slightest bit beyond that. I am talking, more particularly, about an attitude.

This decision in later life to not seek revenge has given me freedom from the trap of the endless violence/victim/revenge/violence/victim cycle. This is not to say I'm perfect at it, by any means, but I am no longer driven and do much less harm to those around me. I have choice in my life and a measure of peace. Violence in your heart will rob you of both joy and peace and also your ability to choose freely. I am not sure how it works but I have definitely noted this loss of autonomy or freedom and free will in myself and others. Perhaps fear blinds us to our choices or even that we can choose at all and perhaps also this is why our governments push fear at us all the time. Regardless, I know freedom and autonomy is much more likely to come from having peace rather than fear in our hearts and to have peace in our hearts we need to first eject violence from them.

So in conclusion, I'd like to say that if we embrace God and live as God intended (and you don't have to be Einstein to work out what that is!) then we will have a measure of peace and joy in our hearts and we will be creative. We will have life (joie de vivre/God's love) and life abundantly. If, on the other hand, we decide to exploit the world and everybody in it, we can expect to have fear and destruction all around us and, indeed, within us as individuals and collectively as societies because we are not using this world or ourselves as we were designed to function. And worse, once we decide to embrace violence and the exploitation of others i.e. evil, we leave our door wide open for demonic forces to enter the world through us and bringing their evil and hatred with them to add to our own heartlessness. This brings not only untimely physical death but spiritual death as well because we have chosen the ultimate insanity; to reject the very source of life itself. And God will honour that choice.

Warring World(s) Part 5b. On Becoming a Formidable Foe (cont.)

Part 5b On Becoming a Formidable Foe (cont) (Previous part here)

The following is written in a rather didactic manner. An inevitable result, I think, of trying to pack a lot into a short essay and also trying to cater for a wide spectrum of experience and understanding amongst those that might read it. So, much of it will be redundant to many. There are a lot of opinions in these essays for which I don't give references. They come from my own experiences, some of which have been extreme. So take it as you will.

In the last Part (5a), I talked about beginning to oppose the conditioning in your life which has literally restricted you and your potential as a human being. The conditioning is all pervasive and like fish who cannot perceive the water they swim in because they have no experience of the water never being there, we cannot understand a life without this conditioning. We may imperfectly imagine it but that's all it will be unless we start making it a reality. We need faith to do this. Faith is believing in what you know to be true or can be true when it doesn't feel like it or you haven't experienced it yet, (these things unseen). And there will be times when it will feel impossible. But as many survivors of abuse, torture and addiction can tell you, it can be done. Programming can be overcome and meaningful and profound change can be brought about. You can change who you are. This is what free will is about; to allow you to become who you want to be, a free woman or man or alternatively a mental and financial slave. This is why the psychopaths spend so much time and effort undermining your sense of free will and personal authority.

To dominate you, they need to dominate your mind because they physically cannot guard and coerce you 24/7. They can only dominate your mind if you co-operate in doing that. Don't co-operate! Don't accept it!

To become a free person and to inspire others to do the same, you need character and nothing builds character like living in and pursuing the truth. And nothing destroys it so effectively as lying and acquiescing to lies. You make yourself so vulnerable psychologically to being manipulated by others when you engage in deceit. You can only blackmail someone who has been deceitful one way or another. That person, then, no longer has control over their own life. Somebody else has that control. This is the fate of so many of our politicians. They have done deals in the dark to gain power but they are no longer their own master. So what is the point? You can't do deals with the Devil and expect to win. So if you are going to run up against “the system”, you are going to need character to resist the fear and to guard against being blackmailed and manipulated one way or another. You will need a solid psychological, even spiritual, foundation and that is provided by pursuing truth in a committed manner.

We need to reduce the fear in our daily lives and increase (or take back) control before we can become part of that formidable foe of the system. This means shrinking back our lives until they are under our control and then after that advancing out into the community and engaging the system.

I am going to harp on the TeeVee again! I urge you again to remove it from your life. It is a major source of fear and helplessess. It also reinforces past deep conditioning. Research psychologists have found that survivors of torture and brainwashing still think their thoughts and concepts are their own even after they have come to accept they have been intensively brainwashed. I could talk on the reasons but the important point for us is that if you have been brainwashed by the TV, you won't realise it. But if you can get an adequate break from it, you will see it. Like a fish that spends enough time out of the water to appreciate the difference, it can now understand what the water feels like when it returns to it. Personally, I find it deeply offensive to be constantly lied to and manipulated. That's Tee Vee. And that's enough from me on TeeVee!

Shrinking your life down means seeing less people. That being the case, it makes sense to leave the shitty ones out; the contentious ones, the draining ones even if they are family. Actually, especially if they are family because they likely have a major negative influence on you because they have been around probably since childhood when the deepest conditioning went in. Don't argue with them, just be hard to reach.

If you are on a lot of committees, take a sabbatical from them. Later on after you have more control over your life you can choose which ones to pick up again. Get your finances under control. Debt is a form of slavery. Reduce your debt in any way you can. If the monetary system collapses, the less debt you have the better off you will be. Thanks to the US government's “Bail-Out”, there are now a lot of cashed up predators out there looking for (and creating) bargains, cheap assets. They intend to create a lot of hardship so as to profit from it. You don't want to have liens and mortgages hanging over you if you can help it. The ownership of your particular lending institution may pass into the hands of some real vultures looking for a short term profit which usually means cashing up the assets and that may have implications for your mortgage (if you have one, of course). At least do everything you can to minimise your debt and exposure. No sense in making it easy for them. Perhaps you could imagine you will lose your job in a month's time and start doing things from that perspective.

Buy yourself a copy of “Your Money or Your Life” by Joe Dominguez and Vicky Robin. It has a very practical and complete program to follow to get control over your finances and the philosophy is in complete accord with where we want to go with all this. (Well, at least, where I want to go with this!). To become active in the community to bring about change, you will need time and energy which will likely reduce your work time and income and so you will have to reduce your need for money. Joe Dominguez retired as a less than highly paid analyst on Wall Street at the age of thirty one. He devoted the remaining thirty years of his life to working for free for community groups and charities. The book tells you how you can do the same.

Look for other ways to shrink or simplify your life because the easier it is to maintain, the more time and mental space you will have. Most importantly, you will get to feel what it is like being in charge of your own life instead of being at someone else's beck and call, be it your dominating mother, your bank manager, your boss or the local loan-shark (not in any particular order, you understand!). You will get to feel what it is like to have time to yourself. Be mindful of who and what you tolerate in your home. Aim to turn it into a sanctuary. We are designed to have stress in our lives. We need it to to keep us sharp. But we are not designed for continual stress. Unremitting stress leads to heart attacks and their psychological equivalents, burn-outs and breakdowns. This society tries to keep you so busy and puts you on 'hurry-up' so that you don't have time to think. Without peace and time to think in your life you can't see what is happening to you. Make that time; get that peace. . . . . and plan your next move. Following are some suggestions.

After shrinking down to get control and a better perspective, it's now time to expand out. Get to know your neighbours. Invite them for dinner. Listen to them and find out their concerns. Talk politics; talk about the future and the future of your children. Look for ways to help each other. Look for ways to trade in a non-monetary way. Build community groups such as food co-ops to grow vegies and buy in bulk. Not only will this be enjoyable, it will save you money and will reinforce the benefits of co-operation over competition and community over isolation.

I have a quote for you from “Gulag Archipelago” by Aleksandr Solzhenitzyn and a question to follow it – (I borrowed it from the front page of this website)

“And how we burned in the camps later, thinking: What would things have been like if every Security operative, when he went out at night to make an arrest, had been uncertain whether he would return alive and had to say good-bye to his family? Or if, during periods of mass arrests, as for example in Leningrad, when they arrested a quarter of the entire city, people had not simply sat there in their lairs, paling with terror at every bang of the downstairs door and at every step on the staircase, but had understood they had nothing left to lose and had boldly set up in the downstairs hall an ambush of half a dozen people with axes, hammers, pokers, or whatever else was at hand? After all, you knew ahead of time that those bluecaps were out at night for no good purpose. And you could be sure ahead of time that you'd be cracking the skull of a cutthroat. Or what about the Black Maria sitting out there on the street with one lonely chauffeur – what if it had been driven off or its tires spiked? The Organs would very quickly have suffered a shortage of officers and transport and, notwithstanding all of Stalin's thirst, the cursed machine would have ground to a halt!”

The question is, “Would these people have been so easy to pick off if they had been living in an interdependent, supportive way with their neighbours?” There's a lesson here for us today.

Start to improve you neighbourhood with community projects. Lobby the Municipal authorities or Councils for changes. Pick projects or issues to start with that you can easily win because not only will you be standing up against the Council and perhaps (probably) some vested interests, you will be standing up against your's and your friends' conditioned learned helplessness. You want to start out kicking a couple of goals to learn in an experiential way that you can win.

Liaise with other community groups to find common concerns. Nominate and support you own candidates for upcoming municipal elections. (They must have no political party affiliations or be prepared to sever them before accepting the nomination). Get behind this candidate with everything you and your fellow community members have. Repeat this process until you have taken control of the Local Council (or whatever you call it in your area). You are now in a position to root out corruption and the inevitable and equally damaging incompetence that goes with it. The resultant prosperity and energy will snowball.

When State elections are imminent, propose to the community groups and local councilors that one of the councilors be nominated to run for the State Government; that you all work for his or her election on the proviso that they vote in the legislature according to the majority vote of the council. In other word, the State member becomes the agent of the council which is, in turn, the agent of the community groups. Again, no political party affiliations are permitted (you don't want any chance of split loyalty) and the electee agrees to only one term of office before it is rotated to another councillor. You want to minimise the possibilities for corruption, and besides, dealing with scumbags becomes debilitating!

You can expect someone elected in this nature to be frozen out in terms of influence for a time by the State Government which may even attempt to penalise your municipality (much like penalising the Gazans for electing Hamas but in a much more minor way , hopefully!), but hang in there. Eventually they will have to deal with your representative and by the time they do you will have a lot of credibility. Groups from other municipalities, I would expect, will approach you once you are seen to be successful and prospering. The good people, the ordinary citizens (like you and me) greatly outnumber the corrupt and the psychopaths. I think people are just waiting for a mechanism or method to turn dreams into reality.

Political parties have shanghaied democracy. You elect a representative who then doesn't listen to you and the reason why is simple. He owes his political future to the party because without the party endorsement he is dead (politically). This happens in both parties, of course, and because the vast majority of incumbents are re-elected, why should he pay any attention at all to the voters' wishes? There is a way to get their attention, though. At the next Federal election, see if you can't organise your area to vote against the incumbent which ever party he may belong to. The two parties are just two faces of the same coin which is readily apparent to all, now, anyway. So what's it matter to anyone which party “represents” you? Not much.

You can't change the parties but you most certainly can change the faces of the representatives. A majority of incumbents hold their seats with only a few percent or less of the vote. You can swing this and remove the incumbent; you know, that snake that voted for the Patriot Act; that snake that voted for the Bail-Out. Go join the challenger's campaign whether that be Republican or Democrat (or whatever Tweedledum and Tweedledee are called in your country). Take your friends with you and tell them, “We're from the community and we're here to help you!” If they wont let you into their camp, campaign for them anyway! Make a massive impact on the snakes that have voted against your interests; that have sold you and the next generation down the river of debt. If the PTB want to make a fuss about this strategy, that's all to the good because the publicity will focus attention on the glaring fact that both parties are the enemy and not this one or that one and the idea of voting out the incumbent whoever he may be will spread. The aim of the strategy is not to get someone elected but to get someone UNELECTED. If this strategy is repeated and spread widely, then either you will get some decent representation or you will grind the system to a halt. Either way you will go a long way towards bringing the cosy two-party system down and making them paranoid about their volunteers! Sound like a plan?

Back to the local community level, start a LETS scheme. LETS stands for Local Exchange Trading Systems. If you are not familiar with what they are, you can read about them here. The ideas of LETS schemes are great and have great potential. Many, though, make the mistake of trading in a currency unit other than dollars (or whatever the national currency in their particular country is). It is much much better to have what is known as “equivalence”. The dollars of the LETS scheme equals exactly the dollar of the national currency. They are for all intents and purposes the same. It's no more that a system of IOUs then. If you use dollars and can settle up in dollars should someone wish to leave the scheme, then you will be acting exactly like a bank, creating money (and out of the same thin air that they use!), only the community will gain the benefit and there is not much the government can do about it. After all, all you are doing is extending credit to each other to be settled up at some future date. The process is no different from the corner store having customer accounts except that in the LETS scheme you will exchange that debt for goods from someone else. If the government wants to say you are acting like a bank then they have to admit what banking really is. If you are guilty of fraud, counterfeiting or acting illegally, then so are the banks.

Start out by issuing everyone with a book of blank IOU's. In other words, a cheque book. Each LETS member has an overdraft limit which can be increased over time as they demonstrate an ability to trade and thereby discharge their debts. Make this trading subject to tax. Don't try and avoid it. It's the second common mistake with many LETS schemes. Keep it legal and open. Mind you, it would be wise to keep all records and computer programs duplicated two or three times at different locations in case of a raid and seizure. You want to keep it going.

A LETS scheme could be really kicked into high gear should you and your community take charge of the local council. The council can then run it and can also guarantee the credit balances because it has a guaranteed income in the form of rates. It can accept payments through the LETS scheme for rates and in doing so giving the LETS units (dollars on credit) guaranteed value. It can avail itself of some cost free financing by paying for some services through its own LETS account. Municipal workers could be paid partly through their LETS accounts. LETS money stays in the community and so keeps going round and round rather than being flushed out every time it is spent with a corporation.

The difference between prosperity and deprivation in a community is governed by the amount of currency in circulation to pay for the goods and services being produced in the community. It is no more complicated than that. A well run LETS scheme will effectively increase that amount of currency and consequently lead to increased prosperity and well being in the community. During the Great Depression in the Thirties, the currency level (Money Supply) was deliberately reduced to one third of its 1929 level. That's what caused the deprivation. The bankers are in the process of doing it again. A LETS scheme will work directly against the banks

One of the major benefits to the psychopaths that run our societies from this economic shrinking going on is that it creates mass unemployment amongst our youth. They are then much more susceptible to being recruited into the armed services and being fed headfirst into the war machine. If you want to stop this war machine then one very effective strategy is to choke off the supply of recruits. Or if you simply don't want your children being sucked into this machine, then you are going to have to create alternative employment for them. With your now vibrant community groups, you can look to starting businesses that will employ these young people in activities that will be beneficial to all. Perhaps you could provide scholarships to students to train in skills needed in your community. A LETS scheme can help in all this, too. You could also target workers currently employed in war industries in your area.

You may think that the government will impose a draft if it can't get the soldiers it wants through economic conscription. But I doubt it very much. That system broke down disastrously in the Vietnam war era and would do so again for the same reason. The conscripts did not decide of their own free will to go to war and they were acutely aware of that. An economic conscript will more readily believe he chose freely (even though that's not the case) and so will much more likely do what he is told. Big difference.

One final suggestion is that if you are going to engage in protests or demonstrations, wear your sunglasses and perhaps a hat and take your video camera with you. Encourage others to do the same. Film the cops and anybody you suspect of being an agent provocateur. In fact, get in the habit of carrying your camera with you in the car wherever you go. I personally think demos are far less productive that other strategies. They sometimes produce injuries and often waste time subsequently with court appearances and perhaps even jail. I think it is much better spending your finite amount of time and energy in throwing the bastards out or simply going around them rather than complaining to them about their own behaviour. All appealing to Caesar about Caesar does is tell both Caesar and you that you think he has the power and you don't. You've got the power. Use it!

It has taken the psychopaths generations to maneuver us into this sorry state so it will take time, years, to turn it all around. But the sooner it starts, the sooner it will happen and maybe the easier it will be. In the meantime, you will be improving your lot and the lot of others, regardless.

Warring World(s) Part 5a. On Becoming a Formidable Foe

Previous Part 4b here

On Becoming a Formidable Foe

There's a war going on and it's been going on ever since so-called “civilisation” i.e. specialised and hierarchical society, began. It's a psychological war and it's being waged constantly against we the “common people” by those who would dominate us in order that we serve them.

I have called those that would dominate us “psychopaths”. While I have resisted defining them for a number of reasons preferring, instead, to simply describe them, I will say this, again; that these people exist is beyond question and that a “psychopath” is someone who has effectively no conscience. Consequently, they feel no shame, no remorse and no guilt at exploiting others. They have nothing inside them mentally to which we can appeal to in an effort to have them change their ways, to co-operate with the rest of humanity. (Further description is to be found here.) This makes negotiation with them effectively impossible and worse than a waste of time (See this article and comments from the Forum on Camp David for an example), given that while ever they have an opportunity to exploit others, they will. So the focus should be on taking away that opportunity. Ultimately, that means physically containing them; isolating them from the rest of the community in as humanitarian a way as possible. After all, we don't want to emulate their behaviour in our efforts to stop this very same behaviour. This is one of the follies of employing violence and retribution in fighting them. In the end, of course, we wish to identify and remove the causes for this anti-social condition. However, before we can change the causative circumstances, we have the more immediate problem of how to wrest control of ourselves and our society out of their hands.

There are many among us who function in a way that may be seen as psychopathic but who are not in fact psychopaths but are simply unthinking or opportunists and people of weak character who enjoy power but ultimately just “go with the flow”, “change with the wind” and “do what they're told”. For the purposes of these essays, I will call them “enablers”. Though we are all enablers to some extent, I will generally mean those that follow orders and who either never think there is anything wrong with doing so or will not look at it for fear of losing their position in life and whatever that entails. These people believe in “authority”. But these people can be appealed to to change. It is best done through example. These people can change and they will because they “change with the wind”. The “wind” being our collective example. When a critical mass of revolutionaries is reached it suddenly overwhelms the old order. The reason is that these enablers “flop over”, as it were. I need to talk more at length about the intoxication of power and the making of psychopaths and will do so in a subsequent essay.

On the other hand, the psychopaths, as said before, cannot be changed by us or by themselves. Picking the difference between these two groups is difficult. Fortunately for us, we don't need to differentiate in terms of strategy or tactics to use against both groups. At least, not until we as a society are in a position to permanently isolate them as individuals. We have this tragedy in our midst, lets us use the urgent need to repair it to better ourselves and succeeding generations rather than making it worse. The end, dignity, freedom and respect for all (who would likewise respect others), has to be the means as well. Where to start? We start by undoing the conditioning that has filled us with fear. We treat it as a phobia against disobedience and as a mental agoraphobia, a fear of stepping outside our now self imposed mental prison. We do this by mentally challenging the erroneous thoughts that govern our behaviour and then we start to physically challenging these same erroneous thoughts through acting differently. Pretty soon the power evaporates out of the conditioning, we see the lie behind it and we are free! Well, freer at least. It's a process.

Violence and the threat of violence are the methods, or weapons of choice of our would be dominators. Alice Miller has detailed the way we are parented, which she calls “poisonous pedagogy” using violence and the threats of violence together with messages of unacceptability. The effect of this process is to leave us all with a very stunted sense of our own autonomy. In other words, our sense of our own freewill which lies at the heart of our creativity and our “image in the likeness of God”. This loss of our ability to understand and use the full extent of our freewill stunts our ability to perceive and experience life; in short, it stunts our nature as human beings, our humanness. This same method of inculcating “desirable” behaviour and thinking is repeated by our society's institutions. We fall victim to these messages because we have been programmed to throughout our childhood. We are like battery hens who maintain their own cages through the mental constructs placed there by others and by believing the story that they were created thus, it has always been this way and this is their destiny. If we are to change our society and its destructive behaviour and goals, we will have to first undo this crippling conditioning. We can do this in our everyday life, and starting today.

We have seen that the 5% or so of our population that are psychopaths have had inordinate influence over the rest of us simply because we have been largely unaware of their existence. If we have been aware of them, we have been blind to their methods and ironically, to their methods of blinding us. We have been lied to from birth by our culture. This has effectively brainwashed us into seeing ourselves and our society upside down; into seeing reality as the controllers in our society would have us see it i.e. that they are in control and we are helpless; that they know what's best for us and we do not. Without this faulty worldview in place in all of us, the psychopaths would be helpless. This psychopathic culture can only function through our co-operation and we outnumber them 20 to 1! We don't need violence and violent weapons. We simply need to change our thinking and subsequent behaviour. The answer is simple, the doing of it less so because the transition process can be a little uncomfortable for everybody! It calls for courage and persistence.

On the way to achieving a critical mass in our society, there will be hardship but there will also be rewards along the way. You will inevitably grow into a more alive and more formidable person. We have a tendency as human beings to want different outputs without changing the inputs. We want a better life without having to make changes in this same life. This is magical thinking. It can't be done. To improve our lives, we have to change and to do that we have to commit to it. We have to “get real” and seek the truth, reality. Change is coming, anyway, so why not take control of what you can, now?

Societal change must start within you as an individual. Without this change you will not be able to contribute to the change in others. So if you look to others first, you will just be a follower and that is not going to advance yourself and it is not going to help advance others. Besides if you have been following the wrong people up till now, how are you going to discern the right ones without changing your worldview first? You would still be looking for essentially the same sort of leader. This is what elections in “two-party states” are all about. Still looking for someone to obey and that is what has led us to this sorry impasse. The “right sort of leader” is one you want to emulate not one you have to, or even want to, obey.

Once you start to change you will be attracted to people who are attempting to do likewise. It now becomes a “chicken and egg thing”, encouraging each other and following each other's example. When this spreads far enough, or goes viral as they say, we have societal change. So the changes I propose are divided into individual and community for clarity of presentation but, as I said, once started on an individual level, it will become a dynamic interaction.

First the individual. This is you, dear reader! The initial focus will be on all the bullshit in your life and getting rid of it (pardon the bluntness. I include myself in all this, BTW). We have been taught bullshit and we repeat it to ourselves every day. Replacing it with truth will simplify your life with yourself and with others. It will reduce the stress and conflict and lead to more happiness. It has to because you will be seeing reality more clearly and will be able to make much better choices. If the reality is that you are afraid of your own shadow, don't bullshit yourself about it. Admit it. Now you can do something about it. The first thing you need to do to fix a broken leg is to face the fact that it is broken. Nothing is going to get better until this first step is taken. Reality cannot be in conflict with itself as there can only be one reality. But you can be in conflict with it and if you are you will pay for it. Alice Miller in her book, "The Body Never Lies", goes to great lengths to show how not facing the reality of our childhood, for instance, will hobble us throughout life and cause ill health and even early death. Nothing can change until we face the truth, whatever that may be. Through truth we undo lies and through undoing lies we gain freedom; freedom from the mental shackles put there by those that would oppress us.

Through knowing truth, you make better choices that will help you rather than some controller that you have been pleasing. That's not to say there won't be some friction with those you work with or live with and love (especially if you live with a controller). It's a sad thing to watch, as an addict is going through the process of fighting his addiction, those around him become threatened and start undermining his efforts. Few welcome change. Forewarned is forearmed!

Buckling under to someone because you love them is not helping you, or them either. Someone is manipulating your immediate controller (they always are, it's part of the territory) and so is manipulating you in turn. By pushing back at who ever it is you love and who is doing this to you, you stop them from relieving their pressure by passing on the bullshit to you and so put pressure on them to pass it back to where it came from. That is helping someone you love.

The first thing to do now is to stop watching TeeVee. It really is demeaning. You are being treated as an idiot and all the psychological messages that go along with that. Not only that, but it reinforces all the programming you received as a child; all the notions this destructive society runs on: competition (one winner, lotsa losers); righteous violence (an oxymoron if ever there was one); authority's right to dominate and wealth equals wisdom (but don't get me started!). The moving light show induces a state of dissociation and thus allows free passage to all sorts of messages, overt and covert. It's brainwashing, pure and simple, and there is no point in fighting your past conditioning if you are also routinely reinforcing it. It's like fighting alcoholism and taking a break every now and then to refresh with a double bourbon. Nuts! So throw that damned box out. If you can't throw it on the municipal garbage tip, stuff it in the garage. If the family politics wont allow that, at least negotiate for it to be put in a room at the end of the house and away from the hub where it dominates thinking and behaviour and you can avoid it. This may seem extreme but if you can live without TV completely for a month and then sit down for a night to watch it you will see why I'm adamant.

We'll come back to the TeeVee later. But, in the meantime, start the experiment. Same goes for newspapers. Save yourself the money. I don't listen to radio either but there's not much of a selection where I live and besides I have issues with it that are peculiar to me. Be discerning. Certainly don't listen to talkback or the news. It's best if you can do without it altogether for a month (rather than having to turn it on and off all the time) just to give yourself a point of comparison. Tape some music and listen to that instead and get your news from the internet.
Next, we all talk bullshit to ourselves and to others. Start challenging obvious bullshit from others. There's no need to get aggressive or moralistic about it. Be respectful because that's what we want more of in the world. Plus, you might have made a mistake in your assessment. Lead by example. Just ask people to explain themselves further. “I don't understand. How does that work?” for instance. These are reasonable questions in any case. Most people are happy to answer them but liars don't like being questioned. Pretty soon people start thinking about what they say to you first before opening their mouths. And pretty soon, too, you start hearing less bullshit (and perhaps better explanations). Your quality of life has already gone up one notch if not two!

Start listening to what you say to others. Think,”is that strictly correct?” Think about whether or not you are leaving people with an incorrect idea of what is going on i.e. misleading them. It's not the straight out lie that's so harmful, it's the deception. Deception is about what is not real. Living in “not real land” is akin to living in delusion which is insanity coming on. You don't want to go there. You're into reality now and the autonomy that it gives you. The more you practise spotting the bullshit in your own talk, the easier it is to spot in others. Authority figures rely on bullshitting you and not being challenged. You now have your first weapon against the next would be Hitler.

By being respectful of others and yourself (i.e. talking adult to adult) you upset the would be controller's playbook. Power junkies worship the hierarchical thinking of the “pecking order”because the hierarchy grants them power. It allows them to “kick down”. But it also demands that they “kiss up” and they're conditioned to it. So your would be controller's first objective is to establish if you are inferior or superior to him. If you do not give him clues that indicate you are an inferior, otherwise known as a victim, from your response, he will likely become confused and is more likely to treat you as if you are a superior, just in case.

Body language is crucial. No shuffling of shoes here! And certainly no looking down, either. Maintain eye contact. If you find that difficult, look at the bridge of their nose, the point right between their eyes. They can't tell that you are not looking into their eyes plus you can see much more of their body with your peripheral vision. Look for indications of doubt and fear in their behaviour. It's a martial arts technique. Practise it at non threatening times. It is also a handy technique to use when some bozo decides he's going to stare you down. Just look at the bridge of his nose, relax your body but pay close attention to his and tell yourself you've got all day to play this game.

If you stop accepting being jerked around you magically stop getting jerked around. It's quite amazing. It's like you have taken down that big neon sign over you head. You know the one, the one that says, "Victim"!

I have the good fortune to know a number of women who have knowingly risked their lives at different times, individually, to speak out truth against serious, organised and well-connected criminals; some of these criminals were/are in the police and government. I figure if they can do that then we can, at least, look the next intimidating punk in a uniform in the eye and ask him calmly and evenly, “Would you mind repeating that?” People who like to dominate others are by definition cowards. They have the need because they lack courage and self esteem. They made a different decision to the one we made to the same programming (I'm assuming I'm amongst friends here!). But more on this later, too.

If you are serious about wanting change, you have some homework to do. Changing will be hard only because it will rub up against your conditioning of learned obedience and learned helplessness. All the more reason to press on! Pressing on is the behaviour, indeed the hallmark, of a formidable person. It will likely displease others around you at first and this might surprise you. But this is also good because you will get to see your own conditioning concerning being an acceptable person! A formidable person is one who does not dance to other's tunes. She or he hears and follows their own piper. (that's for you, McJ!)

I have some additional homework for you, folks; some reading to fill in all that time you now have since throwing out the TeeeVeee.

Anything from Alice Miller (here's a free download of an early book, "For Your Own Good")

"Escape From Freedom" by Erich Fromm (I have to re-read this myself. So if I have to, everybody has to!)

"On Liberty" by John Stuart Mill (he makes an extremely good point, amongst others, about the making of laws to protect people from themselves) Look in the reference section of your local library.

This essay (link courtesy of Littlehorn), “Punishment Vs Restitution” by Roderick T. Long, paying particular attention to the author's notion of what is your domain or sphere of authority and what is not. I fully endorse his views on violence as well.

“The Tao of Pooh” (believe it or not!) by Benjamin Hoff. He has a lot to say about the reality of people in a very engaging way.

Read what you can find on assertiveness and on body language.

And as a parting thought, a piece of wisdom from my part of the woods,

“Never take your eye off the bully”!

As always, questions and comments sought.

Next part - On Becoming a Formidable Foe (cont)

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