I am mainly refocused now on some issues in physics, but as I briefly turn CNN on in the background I feel called to comment on the incredible blindness on display in this region at this time.
As I watched it, I realized: "They say Trump mainly watches CNN and Fox. IF ONLY he could occasionally switch to France 24." The difference between CNN/Congress and France24 was really especially graphic in the past 24 hours.
Here we are in DC, acting solipsistic as usual, as if we were the only creatures in the universe,
seeking truth only by posturing and talking to ourselves in local bars. For example, lots and lots of pious posturing about what we know about Wikileaks. Of course, there is also a lot of posturing about Steve Bannon. Being the weird lonely person who actually tries to take a more scientific approach, I tuned in before to CPAC to get more primary evidence about who Steve Bannon is (previous blog), and... well.. not SO weird... France24 also followed the commonsense approach of asking wikileaks for details on ITS view of who they are and what they are doing.
It was really quite interesting, and I am just sorry that the DC set didn't see the important debate I saw yesterday on France24. There was a familiar moderator (who reminds me a lot of the Celtic side of my own family, though the Donohues didn't have THAT much red hair)... a spokesman for wikileaks, a spokesman for a typical DC intelligence informed shrill viewpoint, and an AfroAmerican guy who came on later whom I mostly missed. The DC guy practically screamed that Wikileaks is an agency of Putin, and gave information on a guy whose name I forget... something like Nero... with definite evidence on Russian connections. The wikileaks guy did not really argue; he clearly stuck with a more civilized type of dialogue, like the moderator himself. He agreed that he did not like Nero, but stressed that most of their people and sources are form the West, not from Russia, and that this explains the balance of what they cover.
He went on to mention how this new leak establishes definitively that the CIA has the well-mastered ability to just stamp any cyberintrusion with Russian fingerprints. Elementary logic would immediately tell anyone that this does insert some uncertainty into the issue of whether it was Russia under Putin's orders which hacked the DNC. Certainly there are some Republicans working for CIA or CIA contractors or FBI who wanted Trump to win, after all. There are even some people working for FBI who were passionate about wanting the FBI to clobber Hillary, for God's sake, and Comey was quite open in the press about heavy pressures put on him by... who precisely?
The wikileaks guy mentioned this, but it should have been utterly and instantly obvious to anyone who learned about this new round of leaks, such as all the folks on the intelligence and oversight committees who have been appearing on CNN. Why are the questions posed by the French reporter and easily dealt with logically (albeit not with certainty at this stage)... but all the DC people seemed
totally and willfully oblivious to information they should be aware of more than the French are? This is a very interesting question in psychiatry, but let me not digress into such technical details, important as they are.
Another really obvious connection: Senator Feinstein commented that all three megaleaks
(1. Snowden; 2. last year's, discussed in detail with citations at www.werbos.com/NATO_terrorism.,pdf; 3. the new round this past week) came from CONTRACTORS.
Come to think of it, how would she know that for leaks 2 and 3? OK, she may have access to some information I don't. Or it may be another typical DC assumption or unquestioned PR effort,
another example of gullible folks just believing what a vested interest wants them to believe. I don't know.
Clearly everyone is excited here by plans to track down who, among the contractors, did the leak. That's reasonable, but another question comes to mind:
Why contractors? Could it be that folks OUTSIDE the government are in fact closer to the real new centers of power, what Bannon calls a "silent coup," and see more directly both what the bigger picture is and how seriously our constitution is being violated and how desperate the situation is for anyone who truly supports the constitution trying to figure out what to do to try to restore democracy? No, this is not about EPA regulations or about socialism; evidence is clear that the "gestapo" works to silence environmental whistleblowers, and has been doing so long before Trump took office. Many months ago, I accidentally saw a netflix documentary, United States of Secrets, which does give details and background explaining why Snowden felt he had no other choice available to him; the consequences of his choice were deplorable in many ways, yet loss of our freedom would be even more deplorable. Am I arguing for clemency for the other two leakers, whoever they may be? No, my point is that we should not be so obsessed with the little guys that we ignore the big gorillas -- the folks outside the government manipulating us all (not only within the constraints of FISA laws but beyond them) via IT. YES, Senator Feinstein, do look at the contractors very closely... but consider doing a creative open effort, trying to sue both them and Comey as states' witnesses to unearth the REALLY dangerous criminals. (The wikileaks guy also showed an awareness of the criminal things going on on a huge scale today...)
At www.werbos.com/NATO_terrorism.pdf, I did discuss technical things required to restore some privacy to the great majority of us. It would take a major informed act of will, and act of intelligence in realizing we need to do that to survive at all. I was amazed that folks in France24 did seem to be aware even of those issues, far beyond the folks here who have troubles seeing so far as their own nose.
It is curious that just after this came out, more news came:
The Senate voted 49 to 48 to eliminate the Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces rule, which is aimed at federal contractors.
Some have compared the outsourcing of security and funding decision functions to use by the Roman Empire of foreign mercenaries. (That was one of the major factors contributing to the collapse of that empire.) Create a slave class, outside of legal protections, and try to control them by turning the screws ever more... Not good. Not sustainable.