All posts by Renee Parsons

Pompeo Challenged at Senate Foreign Relations Committee

Newly appointed Secretary of State Mike Pompeo had every reason to expect that his first official appearance before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee would be the usual slam-dunk as mostly obedient, respectful Senators aligned with his testimony.

Instead of the typically gratuitous compliments and undeserved deference, there was a display (albeit a minority) of some moral courage with a rare slice of truth on Capitol Hill, epitomizing the real-time requirements of a Senator’s job: to be skeptical, provide oversight and demand accountability from every Federal government witness, no matter the rank – once referred to as ‘grilling the witness.”

Besides fraternizing with America’s most privileged citizens, endless rounds of lavish Capitol Hill receptions, wide ranging international travel opportunities (aka junkets), a liberal vacation  policy and exorbitant benefits out of step for the minimal accomplishments actually achieved, the current Senate paradigm has allowed too many Members to degenerate into a protuberance of greedy, sniveling, weak-minded buffoons with no genuine regard for their constituents or what was once the greatest democracy on the planet.

Days earlier, as the nation’s top diplomat, Pompeo delivered the Trump Administration’s controversial “After the Deal: A New Iran Strategy” in a decidedly undiplomatic speech to a less than enthusiastic audience at the Heritage Foundation.  That aggressive strategy included a dozen doomed-to-fail, untenable demands that were little more than a precursor for military intervention and regime change.

Before the hearing began, Pompeo unexpectedly read a crude letter from President Trump to North Korean leader Kim Jong Un cancelling the June 12th summit citing “tremendous anger and open hostility” and concluded with the moronic “If you change your mind …, please do not hesitate to call or write me.”  To date, Trump has softened his stance against a meeting and hints the June summit may occur on schedule.

As the hearing began, most Senators expended their allotted time by steadfastly avoiding the massive foreign policy blunder that had just been dropped in their laps.  The following excerpts focus on two Members, Sen. Rand Paul (R-SC) (1:58) and Sen. Ed Markey (D-Mass) (2:19/3:27) since they had the most extensive dialogue with Pompeo and because they gave Pompeo the most grief.  Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-Or) (3:34) and Sen. Tom Udall (D-NM) (3:15) questioned implications of the upcoming Authority for Use of Military Force (AUMF).

Sen. Paul launched into a rapid-fire critique exposing the inadequacies of Pompeo’s Iran Plan with a much needed dose of reality as he methodically decimated the strategy, beginning with the requirement that Iran reveal the ‘military dimensions’ of its nuclear program:

Let’s substitute Israel for Iran. Does anyone believe that Israel is going to reveal the military dimensions of their nuclear program? ” Paul inquired whether the Saudi’s would be willing to discuss “anything they’ve done to develop nuclear weapons or reveal the military dimensions of their nuclear program. So really what you’re asking for is something they (Iranians) are never going to agree to.”

Regarding the requirement that Iran end its proliferation of ballistic missiles, Paul explained that:

… when we supply weapons, the Saudis buy weapons, the Saudis have a ballistic weapon program, they (Iran) respond to that. The Saudis and their allies …spend more than eight times Iran so when you tell Iran that you have to give up your ballistic missile program but you don’t say anything to the Saudis, you think they are ever going to sign?

If you leave Saudi Arabia and Israel out of it and look at Iran in isolation, that’s not how they (Iran) perceive it. We want Iran to do things that we’re not willing to ask anybody else to do and that we would never do.

Regarding Pompeo’s demand to end military support for the Houthi rebels:

Once again, you’re asking them to end it but you’re not asking the Saudis to end their bombardment of Yemen.  If you look at the humanitarian disaster that is Yemen, it is squarely on the shoulders of the Saudis.

Paul then drew attention to the demand for Iran to withdraw all its forces from Syria noting that:

ISIS is getting weapons from Qatar and Saudi Arabia and that Saudi Arabia and Qatar are ten times the problem. The people who attacked us came from Saudi Arabia. We ignore all that and lavish them with bombs.

It was naïve to pull out of the Iran Agreement and in the end, we’ll be worse off for it.

Pompeo was Stunned and the Silence was Deafening.  Pompeo had absolutely no reaction to Paul’s devastating analysis of US foreign policy in the Middle East, offering no explanation, no excuse, no correction or thoughtful response; nor did any other Senator present dare step into the swamp.

Next up was Sen. Markey citing Trump’s reference to North Korea’s ‘tremendous anger and open hostility” and inquiring:

How did you expect North Korea to react to comparisons between Libya and North Korea, between the fates of Kim Jong Un and Qaddafi? Why would you expect anything other than anger and hostility in reaction to these comparisons?

Markey was referring to Vice President Mike Pence’s  comment that “Kim Jong Un will end up like Qaddafi if he does not make a deal” and National Security Advisor John Bolton’s  “we have very much in mind the Libya model of 2003-2004.”

As background, in 2003 Libyan President Muammar Qaddafi relinquished his nuclear, biological and chemical weapons allowing inspectors to oversee and verify the process.  By 2011, with US and NATO instigation, Libya experienced a violent overthrow of its government with Qaddafi brutally murdered.  And who can ever forget former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s macabre glee “we came, we saw, he died“.

Pompeo expressed “misunderstanding taking place with this idea of a Libya model” and that he “hadn’t done the work to find out what that was…when Libyans chose to give up their nuclear weapons in 2003.  That’s the Libya model.”

Markey explained:

The Libya model, as Kim Jong Un has been interpreting it, is that the leader of the country surrenders their nuclear capability only to then be overthrown and killed.  Why would you not think that Kim would not interpret it that way as it continued to escalate with Bolton and Vice President talking about the Qaddafi model? .…why would you think there would be any other interpretation at what happened to Qaddafi at the end of his denuclearization which is that he wound up dead?  Why would that not elicit hostility from a negotiating partner three weeks prior to sitting down..

From there Markey and Pompeo bantered back and forth with Pompeo consistently failing to grasp the connection between Qaddafi’s 2003 disarmament agreement and US military interference in Libya in 2011 that resulted in Qaddafi’s death as sufficient reason for North Korea to feel threatened.  No matter how precise the clarification, Pompeo continued to respond as a dense, one-dimensional thinker unable to wrap his mind around logic that challenged his view of a simulated reality, as if looking at the same object through a different lens.

Committee chair Sen. Bob Corker (R-Tenn) agreed with Markey.

I opposed so strongly what the Obama administration did in Libya was exactly the argument you are laying out right now…to have someone like Qaddafi who gave up their nuclear weapons and then go kill him to me sent exactly the signal that you are laying out right now.

Corker then announced that he ‘just had discussion with Secretary’s staff and he is now 15 minutes late for a meeting.  I’m going to allow a couple of comments but going to stop it in five minutes.”

Markey immediately inquired:

Who is the meeting with Mr. Secretary.. if you are not going to stay here and answer questions from us.. can you not push that meeting back another 15 minutes…

Corker:

This is getting a little bit, this type of discourse, I’m sorry, I’m the one doing this. I’ve been very generous.

Markey:

…but we agreed to two seven- minute question periods and it is being ended here for two members..

Markey continued until Sen. Corker gavelled his time had expired.

As the Foreign Relations Committee contemplates an upcoming markup and vote on a Forever AUMF next week, it will be a time for other Committee Senators to step outside the Matrix and dig deep to find their own moral fortitude.

The Times, They are a-Changing

It is unlikely that when Bob Dylan first recorded “The Times, They Are A-Changing” in 1963, he was aware that his anti-Vietnam War era song was the perfect description for predicting the then-approaching Paradigm Shift.

First articulated by American physicist and philosopher Thomas Kuhn in 1962,

the term Paradigm Shift (PS) was inspired by Immanuel Kant’s “Critique of Pure Reason” and took on cultural significance with Kuhn’s reference to a radical theory change that distinguished between a revolution in science as compared to ‘normal science” done within an existing framework.

While the 1960s were a turbulent, chaotic time of assassinations, endless war and an unyielding political establishment, there was great hope that public demonstrations would bring meaningful change to the country’s political structure and usher in an era of peace. As Dylan’s masterpiece spoke to a coming political and social revolution, we now know those expectations were never fully realized.

Since the 1960s, today’s usage of PS has evolved to describe a ‘dramatic change in the prevailing framework of existing reality’ to include the sweeping transformation of outmoded structures and institutions that no longer serve the public interest, challenges to basic assumptions about how the world functions and the surfacing of dark truths that have been kept from the public.

Given today’s turbulent political environment with much attention focused on Trump’s medieval policies and the Democrats near-total collapse as a viable alternative, a step back from the furor reveals an emerging, if unsettling series of events – that there is a uniquely powerful political, cultural, social and institutional Paradigm Shift (see list below) occurring right under our noses.

While doubts about the integrity of American institutions have been widespread for decades, what is unique about this Shift is the sheer volume and magnitude of events, changes or transformation underway virtually all at the same time – and those Shifts are not limited to partisan politics but span a wide segment of American culture and environment.

The sudden revelations of the Bill Cosby – Harvey Weinstein allegations, followed by weeks of additional accusations of sexual misconduct, comes to mind as one example of deeply held secrets, known by certain insiders, yet kept hidden from the public for decades.

Other events that could be viewed as PS related include the 2016 Brexit vote to leave the EU just as suggestions about the EU’s instability continue to abound. Immediately following Brexit was the Wikileaks release of thousands of DNC emails citing efforts to sabotage the Bernie Sanders campaign which also opened the door to widespread internet discussion about elite participation on pedophilia crimes against American children and, of course, the loss of sure-winner Hillary Clinton and the election of political outlier Donald Trump.

The 2008 election of Barack Obama would qualify as a PS event with a racially minority candidate, although actor Morgan Freeman referred to Obama as the nation’s first mixed race president rather than a candidate born directly out of America’s inner city black experience. Promising hope and change as president, Obama failed to deliver as a convincing PS as he consistently protected the ‘old order;’ initiating war in four countries living in peace in 2008 (Ukraine, Syria, Yemen, Libya) and the most aggressive pursuit in American history of the country’s most prestigious whistleblowers.

When the hierarchy of the nation’s top law enforcement agency is revealed to have organized within its bureaucratic structure to undermine a major party presidential candidate and initiated further efforts to destabilize a newly elected president, it was only a matter of time before the details would emerge – the full extent of which may not yet be known.

As the American psyche is not immune from the chaos of these seemingly disconnected external events, a deep sense of foreboding has set in that the country is spinning out of control as if a whirling cosmic force had taken control.

Contributing to the sense of confusion that the left hand does not know what the right hand is doing, the American public (which supports a fair immigration policy) is bewildered when President Bill Clinton articulated an immigration policy in 1995 that today’s Democrats vehemently oppose.

As public lack of support for the two political parties continues to erode, the line between the Democrats and Republicans has thinned as both are unabashed supporters of the country’s intel, surveillance. military and financial apparatus. The Dems continue to foment an alienate-and-divide strategy with no real leadership on important policy issues as the Republicans put the social safety net on the chopping block.

With events happening so quickly leaving little time to assimilate the impacts, the American public struggles to process what is real, trustworthy and authentic as it witnesses the unraveling of deep cultural decay, a behind-the-scenes subterranean power struggle that has yet to fully surface and disintegration of the American Empire.

And yet most Americans continue to believe in the illusion of democracy and function as a model of cognitive dissonance with little awareness of its own contribution to the collective collapse of a fantasy world that never existed.

While the country is fast approaching an existential crisis on steroids, life’s karmic vengeance is preparing to exact its payment for pursuit of an unsustainable materially acquisitive lifestyle, allowing an unaccountable national security complex to run roughshod over the Constitution while the public looked the other way as Congress recklessly drove the national debt through the roof and allowed war criminals to define foreign policy.

In spite of the above, somewhere there lurks in the American psyche a deep capacity for renewal, truth telling and honesty. It won’t be pretty and there are difficult days ahead but it is long past due for the American public to stand tall and enunciate or demand, a new and different national vision; one ennobling and empowering to the democratic spirit and to publicly reject the decades of deceit and corruption.

Buying into the fear and intimidation is not a useful response and before the new America can be ushered in, it is time to wake up and acknowledge what our country has become.

  • * *

Here are some PS examples:

Threats to the US petro dollar

Dissolution of the country’s two political parties

$20 trillion missing from the Pentagon and HUD

Geo-engineering the weather and chem trails

neo-con Bill Kristol endorses billionaire Oprah Winfrey for president,

Apple/Intel aware of Spectre and Meltdown digital ‘vulnerabilities’ hackable flaws

with no corrective patch available

FANG and Propornot role in censoring news and acting as agents for the intel

community

Rise and fall of Cryptocurrencies

Southern Poverty Law Center multimillion $ off shore account

Never ending wars in middle east

Multiple mass shootings

NY Times reporter James Risen confirms NYT suppression of stories at

government request

Opiod drug crisis

Corruption of FBI hierarchy

Immigration Debate

Quantum computers and Artificial Intelligence

Lack of credible political leadership

Yellowstone Super Volcano

Moeller Russiagate investigation

Continued ‘house arrest’ of Julian Assange

Fake news and MSM links to the CIA (Operation Mockingbird),

Grand jury investigation of Jane Sanders $10M loss at Burlington College, Premature deaths/suicides of naturopathic, alternative healers and vaccine

researchers

TV ads criticizing the Humane Society of the US for misappropriation of funds

NY Stock Exchange peaks at $26,000 prior to ‘correction’

Bipartisan Congressional approval of $80 Billion Pentagon increase beyond

Trump’s budget request which included massive cuts to the social safety net

Decrease in the Earth’s electromagnetic shield in the last hundred years

Continuing shift of Earth’s magnetic poles as evidenced by the

South Atlantic anomaly.

NASA’s blasé denial of threat to Earth’s radiation shield

The Democrats Futile Search for Evidence

If there is anyone to blame for the election of Donald Trump,  it is not the Russians – it is the Democratic Party and its allies in the MSM.

It does not take a Trump supporter or a registered Republican to recognize that the Democrats

hysterical allegations of Russian collusion with the Trump campaign to influence the election has no merit and are nothing but petty, ideological over-reactions to their humiliating losses throughout the country in the 2016 election.

And it does not take a trained psychologist to see that the Democrat/MSM campaign to destroy a democratically elected President have perpetuated the anti-Russian effort as a coping mechanism to avoid the painful truth that they have suffered a publicly embarrassing loss of power and status.   After 8 years of pretending that Barack Obama was a perpetual political gift they could ride to victory, the reality is too damned excruciating to admit that their own betrayals to peace, health care, the economy and jobs have brought them down.

The challenge for the Democrats is to suck it up and behave like mature professionals who deserve to be elected.  Currently, they chose to remain in the wilderness of confused cognitive entanglement; unable to stretch beyond their narrow view of themselves as morally and intellectually superior.   Instead, unable to do any independent thinking, they encourage the party’s rank-and-file to remain in the unproductive throes of an unhinged emotional breakdown that seeks to threaten the constitutional stability of the country.

While Wikileaks can take credit for revealing the DNC’s links with the MSM as now indisputable (a job well done by Operation Mockingbird), the joint Democrat/MSM attacks on the Trump – Russia have inadvertently revealed the potent politicization of the FBI, CIA and NSA as well as the morally bankrupt nature of the Democratic party.

Even the assertion of “no evidence” from multiple intel agencies has not stopped the delusional Democrats from going hog-wild insane; daring to suggest that unproven allegations of electoral interference should be considered as an ‘act of war”.  Having sold their souls to the war machine during Obama’s terms in office, Congressional Dems have now linked arms with the appalling former Bush VP Dick Cheney and Senators Lindsay Graham (R-SC) and John McCain (R-Az).

An impeccable example of Democratic neurosis that has identified a conclusion lacking evidence, long time apologist for Israel Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Ca), ranking minority of the House Intel Committee, has set himself up as a moral arbiter of wildly unsubstantiated charges like  “notwithstanding an abundance of evidence that Russia hacked our political institutions,” and more recently “there’s more than circumstantial evidence of Trump-Russia collusion.”    Schiff has consistently failed to provide one iota of proof supporting his accusations while the MSM takes his fabrications as fact.

In an intensely partisan dispute that is about political control rather than national security, Schiff has demanded that Rep. Devin Nunes (R-Ca) Chair of the House Intel Committee, recuse himself from the Committee investigation citing an inability to conduct an impartial hearing.

In a memorable December 8th interview on FoxNews with Tucker Carlson (which is ‘unavailable’ on YouTube), Schiff met with push-back from Carlson who is perhaps the only iconoclast interviewer on all of commercial TV.   Carlson makes a game out of systematically peeling back the layers of any well established, status quo argument, frequently leaving his guest in knots or otherwise looking ridiculous.  He is a joy to watch as he ripped the mask off the pompous Schiff.

In a typical response from an inquisitor who has lost control of the narrative, here are a few choice excerpts as Schiff escalates the witch hunt but cannot substantiate  his claims as he seeks diversion by accusing Carlson of ‘carrying water for the Kremlin”:

Carlson:   “I get it, I get it…Nobody’s for hacking.   Let me just make one clear point.  You don’t know that Vladimir Putin was behind those hacks?”

Schiff:   “Well, we do know this…”

Carlson:   “but you don’t know that so let’s not pretend you do..”

Schiff:   “Well, let’s not ignore what the Director of National Security and the Secretary of Homeland Security said publicly which is that these hacks were of such seriousness that they could not have taken place without approval of the highest levels of the Kremlin.”

Carlson:   “That’s speculation.  What is speculation… is it a statement of fact”

Schiff:   “it is not speculation.  It is a statement of the intelligence community’s best assessment.  Because there’s a political reason to do it.. this is what the intelligence professionals are saying.”

Carlson:   “Ok .. I remember vividly the massive stockpiles of wmd in Iraq which the intelligence community assured us were there and they weren’t  so pardon my skepticism.”

***

Carlson:  “I’ve been following this.  I get it.  There’s been lots of hacking, at the White House, the Pentagon, the State Department, the CIA Director’s personal email was hacked, we think in some cases by Russia.  I don’t remember  you holding a press conference and saying, hey, Obama Administration,  you’re  cyber security is  pathetic.  In this letter to the President, you don’t mention the fact that American cyber security is inadequate and that the Administration is partly responsible for allowing these hacks to happen.  Why don’t you mention that?”

Schiff:    “You haven’t been watching the opening hearings of the…”

Carlson:   “I have…”

Sciff:    “I don’t think you have because if you had, you would see me pressing the Administration on the failures to protect our data …”

Carlson:   “Then why not mention it in this letter?”

Schiff:   “Because this letter was about Russian meddling and if you don’t think that’s significant that a power that is an adversary of ours is bombing civilians in Syria right now, that’s invading its neighbor’s and also interfering in our political process as well as our allies…if you don’t think that’s serious, it’s hard for me to imagine that you’re of the same party as Ronald Reagan.”

***

Carlson:   “What were the means they used?

Schiff   “…the means they used were hacking into  democratic institutions and the leaking of documents designed in the primary process to sow division between Clinton and Sanders camps something we saw actually took place as a result of that because of that and then in general election  to attempt to discredit secretary of State Clinton in a way to harm her and would  help Donald Trump”

Carlson:  “How did they do that?”

Schiff:    “Well it was pretty obvious, wasn’t it? ….they haeked, they released documents that were…”

Carlson:     “..that were real..”

Schiff:      “Oh yes they were real and they were ones that were damaging to Secretary Clinton.”

***

Carlson:   “But they don’t know that the Putin government and neither do you.   You don’t know that Putin was behind those hacks.  I think it’s irresponsible for you to say that and you don’t know.”

Schiff:    “You know what is irresponsible Tucker, is that you make that claim without looking at the evidence and more importantly have not seen the Russians…. “

Carlson:   “You can’t say that you know the Putin government did that.”

Schiff:     “..and more importantly for the president elect today to say that he doesn’t know whether the Russians…”

Carlson:   “You’re dodging.    You’re on the Intel Committee.  Let me just ask you one final question. Can you look right into the camera and say that you know for a fact that the government of Vladimir Putin was behind the hacks of John Podesta emails. “

Schiff:    “Absolutely.   The government of Vladimir Putin was behind the hack of our institution, not only in the US but also in Europe”

Carlson:   “ …of John Podesta’s email.  you know that you’re dodging.  You can’t say it.. Look and say that they hacked  Podesta’s email.”

Schiff:   “I think Ronald Reagan would be rolling in his grave that you are carrying water for the Kremlin”

Carlson: “I am not carrying water for the Kremlin.  Look, you are a sitting member of Congress on the [House Intelligence Committee] and you can’t say they hacked..”

Schiff    “You’re going to have to move your show to RT – Russian television because this is perfectly…”

Carlson:  “You know what? That’s so beneath your office because it’s so dumb, and you are being duplicitous. I’m asking you did they hack [John] Podesta’s emails and you can’t say it.”

Schiff:   “You should not resort to personal insults like that Tucker.”

Carlson:   “You just said I was carrying water for Putin.  That’s pretty hilarious.”

Schiff:    “When you essentially are an apologist for the Kremlin, that’s what you do.”

Carlson:   “One last time Congressman.  Look into the camera and say they hacked John Podesta’s emails.  We know for a fact that the Russians hacked John Podesta’s emails.  You can’t and you know you can’t and you ae hiding behind weasel words.”

Schiff:   “I’m not going to be specific….”

Carlson:   “..because you don’t know it, that’s why.   Done.  You don’t know it and you’re alleging it without any evidence. “

Schiff:    “You’re ignoring the evidence because you don’t care because the fact that it helped the Republican candidate is all you need to know.”

Carlson:    “That totally false.   I just think that if you’re going to make a serious allegation against actual country with an actual government you ought to know what you’re talking about and you don’t.”

Schiff:    “…ought to accept Republicans on intel committee if you.”

Carlson:    “..if you could say it, you would have but you didn’t.  I got to go. I’m taking cash from Putin, on RT.”

Schiff:   “If you’re willing to be in denial because it suits a Republican president….”.

Carlson:   “You can blather on all you want.  I gave you a chance to state it clearly and you couldn’t.  I  need to take a call from Vladimir Putin so I need to put you on hold for one second.”

Meanwhile, as the Dems/MSM continue to waste time and energy on inane investigations of Russian collusion, the Russians have recently opened an office in Beijing to phase-in a gold back standard of trade while the Chinese have opened a new central bank office in Moscow that will allow the Russians to issue federal loan bonds in the yuan – thereby decreasing their dependence on the dollar-based trade.   

And if there is going to be an investigation of interference in US elections, let it include Israel.