Archive for the ‘(All Things) CULTURE’ Category

I’ve been a little late focusing on the ‘Yellow Vest’ protests or strikes in France.

But it seems to me, given a cursory reading of various sources, like a legitimate, mass expression of dissatisfaction with the French establishment politicians. A lot of people in France are fed up and have decided to group together to make their discontent heard.

There have been conspiracy theories flying all over the place (aren’t there always?): ranging from the protests being led by Le Pen supporting fascists to a theory that it’s a Color Revolution being orchestrated by Trump and the US to unseat Macron or a Russian-influenced movement to further destabilise the West.

None of the ‘theories’ or unnecessary add-ons to the narrative that I’ve seen are convincing.

And there’s one particular strand of Deliberate Misinformation that is particularly sinister – which I’ll focus on shortly.

Because, as much as this is an article about the Yellow Vest protests, it is also an article about the sinister information war – which weaves through all of the idealogical divide, ‘culture war’ and socio-political crisis occuring in Western nations.

My purpose here is not to question the French protesters, but to debunk the lies of the people who are deliberately misrepresenting the protests.

From what I can tell, it looks like the Yellow Vest protests are just people in France being genuinely fed up. There are probably elements in there who inserted themselves into the situation just to cause trouble or create violence – but that’s always what happens. In reality, it seems simply that a lot of ordinary, dissatisfied people in France have had enough of taking the hit for elite 1% interests: and that a protest like this has been building for a long time.

So, to be clear, nothing in this article is calling into question the motives or intentions of the actual French protesters themselves – who seem to be in solidarity with each other and against the corrupt, elite interests dominating France.

However (and unfortunately, perhaps), ever since the ‘Arab Spring’, I do get suspicious of sudden eruptions of mass protests that come packaged with a symbol or slogan. (more…)

Advertisements

The rise of Jair Bolsonaro in Brazil seems to be further proof that pretty much the entire planet is moving in a counter-clockwise direction.

Almost everywhere you look, there seems to be the sense that the Bad Guys are in the ascendancy: and that – far from opposing it – very large sections of populations are almost gleeful about welcoming that state of affairs.

I wrote at length here a few weeks ago about all of the madness, misinformation and *reality* of the ‘Migrant Caravan’ from Honduras to the US: and that’s going to be relevant again to this subject of what’s going on in Brazil.

We really have entered into an extraordinary age of mass manipulation, popular stupidity, blind folly and open conspiracy.

‘Corruption’ is a massive factor too, of course: but corruption is the oldest profession in the world, so we should always take that as a given. There’s always a big dose of cognitive dissonance going on when people talk about all the ‘corruption’ and the need to find a saviour to ‘fix’ all the terrible ‘corruption’ – that’s also one of the oldest tricks/archetypes in the book.

‘Corruption’ and dealing with all these ‘corrupt politicians’ is actually precisely the thing that paved the way to this state of affairs – which we’ll come to in a moment, as we’ll have to rewind the narrative back two years.

But what also keeps occuring to me is the sense that the Old Elites are playing an absolute blinder: casting themselves and their proxies as the heroes in the shifting equations, often manipulating even the working classes into championing them and generally getting people to mostly miss the forest for the trees. (more…)

It can be dangerous to be an activist for the environment or even for human rights: particularly in a country where foreign-trained Death Squads are working directly for the corporations whose interests you’re interfering with.

I covered the murder Honduran activist Beta Caceres here in 2016.

I covered the Honduras coup in that article too: and revisited it recently again here in relation to the current Migrant Caravan from Honduras to the US/Mexico border.

The short recap is that the US State Department in 2009 provided cover for a right-wing military coup in Honduras that overthrew the elected government and has been in power ever since: engaging in mass suppression, state violence and general dictatorship. (more…)

A statue of the late Soundgarden/Audioslave frontman and rock music legend, Chris Cornell, was recently unveiled in Seattle.

I haven’t been able to figure out how I feel about this monument, or what it’s meant to represent, or for who’s sake it has been erected.

My instinctive reaction to the images of it are that it seems like a tacky thing to do: and also seems like something Chris Cornell himself would not have wanted. (more…)

ba3.JPG
At this time, there are no doubt scores of World War I articles and expositions being published right now. But I also want to talk about one of the more famous cultural homages to the First World War – the fourth and final series of the classic British series Blackadder; and in particular its famous final episode.

While Blackadder as a whole is rightly regarded as an absolute classic in British television comedy (despite a dreadful first season), it is probably its forth and final incarnation, Blackadder Goes Forth – the season set in the trenches of World War I – that is the most fondly regarded overall.

Airing on the BBC from 28th September to 2nd November 1989, the final series of Blackadder depicted life in a Flanders trench in World War I and centered primarily around Captain Blackadder’s failed schemes to escape the grim horrors of the front line. While the Elizabethan Blackadder II (who could forget Miranda Richardson’s singular take on the Virgin Queen?) and the Georgian-set Blackadder the Third (and who could forget Hugh Laurie’s exceptionally stupid Prince George?) are both equally as good in comedy terms, what marks out the final series of Blackadder is the grimness of its setting and the surprising level of poignancy it manages to attain at times, particularly in its final episode. (more…)

The highly divisive drama in the US, concerning the ‘Migrant Caravan’ from Central America, is clearly being manipulated and stage-managed by the media and by rival propaganda campaigns that are using vulnerable human beings as tools for mass manipulation and division.

In fact, this isn’t new: this seems to be a re-run of the 2015-onwards Migrant Crisis that destabilised Europe, albeit the American version.

The weaponisation – on both sides of the ‘argument’ – of the migrants and their situation is a contrived, scripted affair, mostly divorced from the reality of the problem and the key points in recent history that are relevant here (namely, what happened in Honduras several years ago – which NO ONE on either side of the idealogical divide seems to be talking about).

I’ll offer a recap on the Honduras situation in a moment – because it’s the elephant in the room that seems to be being glossed over.

But there’s a couple of things to bear in mind.

First, the whole way this is being made to appear and to unfold seems designed for maximum dramatic imagery and to provoke maximum xenophobia. It’s one thing for the rabid ‘Build the Wall’ crowd to see news items about scattered incidents of individual illegal migrants or small groups of asylum seekers – but when the situation is presented as an organised mass of people on their way to the border, it is clearly primed to provoke maximum paranoia and resistance. (more…)

The latest episode of the Reality TV show that is presently the United States of America appeared to make very little sense: though it was a high-quality drama that helped fill media space for a few days and keep everyone occupied.

In fact, the whole thing did come across like an entirely stage-managed media production or event: complete with dramatic scenes of CNN presenters having to broadcast from the street, as their studios were apparently in lockdown from the bomb threat.

The villain of the piece – Cesar Altieri Sayoc Jr (although the real villain of the story was meant to be Trump himself) – even came complete with his own media super-villain name, the ‘MAGA Bomber’. That hashtag got trending pretty quickly.

The alleged perpetrator was apparently a big-time Trump supporter, who had previously been filmed at Trump rallies wearing the dumb MAGA cap. The crude ‘pipe bombs’ were mailed to various targets, including former President Barack Obama, former Secretary of State and Sith Lord Hillary Clinton, former Vice President Joe Biden, billionaire George Soros, actor Robert De Niro, and several others, including the CNN studio itself. (more…)

‘The world is a stage’, the saying goes.

Lately, I’ve been more acutely aware of something that had been prodding at my mind for a while: but that I hadn’t quite put my finger on properly. Specifically, the idea that a fake or ‘scripted’ reality is playing out all over the place – and that this scripted ‘reality’ is populated by actors merely playing parts.

In short, what I’m asking here is ‘are we now stuck in a reality TV show’? Is our collective consciousness being reconfigured into a reality-tv format?

In fact, I’ve been trying to write an article on a broader subject (Scripted Reality) for some time now – and have as-yet declined to publish it, because I can’t quite get my thoughts together coherently.

But watching the frankly weird spectacle of millionaire rap star Kanye West and millionaire US President Donald Trump in the White House rather powerfully triggered me back to this subject. I want to talk about Kanye West and also the ‘Kardashians’ (I’m so sorry) and where they came from: and why this is all so weird (and why it has troubling implications).

In doing so, I also want to talk about the very nature of ‘truth’, ‘reality’ and perception – and what the term ‘post-truth’ might actually end up meaning.

For starters, the footage of the eccentric rapper’s staged twenty-minute conversation with the President strikes me as one of the most bizarre moments so far of the Donald Trump presidency and its accompanying reality-TV freak-show (click on the image to go see the video, if you haven’t seen it already).

And it again forces me to ask whether this all is a reality TV show now – albeit, one that’s been transplanted (with the help of both the media and the ‘viewing public’) onto a broader perception of ‘reality’ with far bigger implications for society, intelligence levels, general perception and collective consciosuness. (more…)

This is ‘Part II’ of the article that was originally talking about the situation in Sweden: now I want to focus on Germany. Though, broadly speaking, this is all one subject.

There are groups, ideologies, platforms and parties right now that are working to push all of civilisation into a ‘race war’ or ‘civil war’ scenario – a sectarian-based societal breakdown in Europe and the West to mirror the one that has already been inflicted on the Middle East.

I have been writing about this equation – in its various manifestations and contexts – for some time here.

We are currently in a situation where the danger of a ‘Far Right Europe’, “a return to the 1930s” or even a fascist world order, could soon become palpable – if certain psy-op programmes play out successfully.  Which depends on how stupid or smart, how informed or misinformed, the general public is in various countries.

In the previous article, we examined the deteriorating situation being reported in Sweden, ahead of that country’s election this weekend: centering on the dramatic acts of violence and vandalism that have rocked the country and the fact that Sweden’s Far-Right “Nazi” party (the Sweden Democrats) is the main beneficiary of those incidents and is predicted to emerge this weekend as potentially the biggest political party in Sweden.

That would represent a seismic shift in Swedish politics and society. Germany too could be on the verge of – or in the midst of – a seismic shift.

Germany, like Sweden, is in the same struggle now occuring for the political souls of various countries. A battle that, as in Sweden, is being manipulated from the outside: though most people don’t seem to realise it.

Which brings us to the dramatic, disturbing scenes in Chemnitz, in the east German state of Saxony, where the Far Right rallies have been getting lots of international attention.

I want to demonstrate here why the ‘trigger-event’ in Chemnitz was probably a false-flag, and then I want to talk about the outside manipulation and the information/misinformation war, as well as focus on the major beneficiary of these events, the ‘AFD’: there’s a lot of very, very interesting information.

But first let’s just recap on what has actually been going on this passed week or so. (more…)