Category Archives: General Interest

Witch Hunts

A bizarre view of right and wrong dominates America’s political landscape.  Perhaps it was always there, but I watched it grow and intensify through my lifetime and now in the age of mass media spin, well, it smacks you in the face over every discussion that involves partisans.

The media also breaks down issues using this partisan lens, to determine right and wrong, saints and evildoers.  The President and Congressional leaders all fall in line with this bizarre, two-tiered system of determining right and wrong too.   That leaves our judicial system, as our only hope for a sane, one set of rules for all view.

Every American citizen should embrace one set of rules for all and be Americans first, partisans second.

Our partisans have one set of rules for their side and a completely different set for their opposition.  The Mueller report serves as an object lesson, if we choose to learn from it.

President Trump and his followers eagerly embraced the parts of the Mueller report that clear Trump and his campaign of conspiring with Russians and they embraced Attorney General Barr’s determination that no obstruction of justice occurred.

If President Trump did encourage other people to lie to investigators, as alleged, I believe that is obstruction of justice, so I disagree with Barr on this point.  I don’t believe obstruction of justice rests on whether the target of the investigation is innocent or guilty of a crime.  I think it rests on whether in a legal investigation, a target was trying to undermine the lawful investigative processes – for ANY reason.  Trump may have been reacting to spin, trying to score political points or just wanted to thwart the investigation, because he believed it was unfair and a “witch hunt”.

Trump’s actions are exactly like the Clintons view of investigations into them.  Hillary has whined for decades that they are the victims of unfair “witch hunts”.  The Clintons have worked tirelessly to undermine investigations of them.

President Trump and his campaign were trying to acquire Russian dirt on Hillary and just because they didn’t succeed in conspiring with Russians in this effort, the underlying truth is they were totally open to accepting dirt on Hillary – from any source.  Likewise, Hillary, her campaign and DNC lawyers actually did set out and, according to their claims, successfully acquired Russian dirt on Trump (the Steele dossier is Russian dirt on Trump).  There is no difference in Trump or Hillary’s intentions to acquire Russian dirt and willingness to accept dirt from any source.

Trump and the Clintons operate from a starting belief that the rules don’t apply to them and that whatever their goals are,  are so important and the “witch hunt” they are facing is so “unfair”, that any means they take to win are justifiable.  That’s the truth.  Their followers  and people with strong partisan views of either of them, start buying into this, “Well, just look at how awful the other side was acting, so no wonder they did X.Y,Z that skirted the rules.”  Another favorite delusion partisans fall into is buying into the belief that the “enemy” is just so awful and the situation so dire (Flight 93 thinking, anyone), that we must support them, because if the “enemy” wins, America is doomed.  It’s always “Anyone, but… that horrible “enemy”.

This existential crisis thinking is leading America to lawlessness.

The rules apply to everyone.

If Trump or Hillary believe an investigation is just a “witch hunt”, then through legal efforts, they should try to make that case, but their belief about the investigation does not entitle or justify their undermining the investigation.

We all must live under one set of rules in America, regardless whether a high-profile politician, under investigation, feels he or she is the target of a  “witch hunt”. Under no circumstances is it okay for them to lie or encourage others to lie to investigators or bleachbit servers or destroy tens of thousands of emails under subpoena.

We all need to take off the partisan blinders and stick to one set of rules for everyone.

 

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Happy Easter!

Image compliments of: https://thegraphicsfairy.com/free-vintage-clip-art-darling-birds-in-nest/

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Gloomy spin forecast ahead…

Friendly warning: This post is another warning about our scorched earth spin information war. In light of the Mueller report, not saving America from the spin war, I just felt like repeating my warning.

The endless semantical musical chairs word game has frustrated me about American presidential politics since the advent of sophisticated spin operations began in the 90s.  This same word game still frustrates me today.  Perhaps my frustration stems from a childhood spent struggling not to stutter, struggling to spit out words, but most of  all, devoting hours  upon hours, reading the dictionary.  I practiced trying to learn how to pronounce words and I practiced trying to remember what words mean.  Of course, many words have multiple meanings, but with the spin word games, most of the effort is to redefine the truth, using slippery language to manipulate people into believing bold-faced lies.

Spin is mostly bold-faced lies, deliberately used to dupe the American people. 

That’s the truth.

Sure, we all know politicians aren’t noted for their candor and truthfulness, but spin operations are mass media driven efforts to drive and control public opinion in America.   Mass media serves as the battlefield for the cultural war in America.  It’s doubtful that most politicians and the media, who serve as the foot soldiers battling forth in the spin war, even really realize they are fighting in an information war to control public opinion in America.  The entire spin war runs counter to American free speech principles and assures corruption of all who engage in it.  When you begin to go along with using “spin” to win, you’ve bought into deliberately manipulating Americans, deliberately spreading carefully crafted political messaging and deliberately working to confuse the meaning of words (mass media propaganda brainwashing operations). You’ve bought into deliberately spreading lies.

If you embrace spin information warfare, you are embracing a march toward authoritarianism.

Winning the spin war is to control public opinion in America via sophisticated control of mass media messaging (winning the spin cycles).

The Left has owned the spin cycles in America since the 90s.

The Right relied on Fox News, talk radio, online forums and formats, but the Left controlled all of the mainstream media avenues in America.

I feel like a broken record repeating this, but American liberty depends on Americans, especially our leaders, understanding the dangers posed to American liberty by this endless spin information war.  America is not only politically divided, but due to the effects of non-stop, scorched earth spin information warfare blazing across American media 24/7, it’s becoming more and more difficult to keep track of the spin, keep track of the corrections, keep track of which parts of reports were true, which parts were debunked and frankly, the amounts of spin starts destroying our ability to figure out the truth.

If you watch MSNBC and CNN, you live in one hermetically sealed spin bubble.  If you watch FOX, you live in a different hermetically sealed spin bubble.  Much of what is reported, as objective news, inside either spin bubble is obviously biased, but the real insidiousness of spin comes with the pundits in these bubbles, who tirelessly spew out carefully crafted spin messaging, to herd and corral their viewers into remaining loyal, rabid partisans.

Before Trump, the Left was winning the larger cultural war, and had owned the spin war for decades, afterall, they have dibs of being referred to as “the mainstream media”, while Fox news was dismissed as “Faux news” and talk radio was cast as the home of “dangerous, right-wing militia types, who should be regulated by the government”.

Trump broke through the Left’s control of the spin in America and he did it by learning how to emulate the Clinton spin messaging tactics.  He doesn’t have as sophisticated of a spin messaging strategy as Bill Clinton and his spin gurus, but Trump operates as a spin guerilla.  He mastered rapid spin attacks that disrupt the Left’s carefully crafted spin attacks and his guerilla spin attacks often win the spin cycle (OODA loops).

Trump followers are just like Clinton followers and Obama followers.  They buy into the spin of the leader.  They repeat the leader’s spin.  They become emotionally invested in the leader’s spin messaging.  Trump just like the Clintons and Obama relies on spin messaging to keep his following.  They are all dedicated to deliberately lying to the American people to advance, first themselves, and second their political agenda.

None of them has any respect and reverence for speaking the truth.

None of them will save America from the reckoning that will come at the end of our scorched earth spin war.

All three camps – Trump, the Clintons and Obama were engaged in corrupt activities to win the spin in 2016

That’s the truth.

All three camps, with their media spin operators, are still engaged in corrupt spin messaging operations to cover-up their corrupt activities to win the spin in 2016.

That’s the truth, too.

With American partisans entrenched in spin operations, it’s paramount for America’s leaders to recognize that SPIN info war is more of a threat to America than any one political leader or political party.  Spin information war leaves America wide open to hostile foreign information warfare attacks.  We have no means to protect ourselves from insidious foreign mass media efforts to fuel divides in America, when our American media is engaged running domestic partisan spin war operations.

At the end of a scorched earth spin information war, America will be a totally balkanized country, easily defeated by hostile foreign organized sophisticated information warfare operations, and we could fall sway to abandoning large chunks of our liberty, out of mass panics incited by spin operations (both domestic or hostile foreign ops).

Stopping this scorched earth spin information war, that is tearing the soul of America apart, remains vital to American liberty and to America’s future as a constitutional republic.

Quite a gloomy prediction, here, but never fear, everyone in America can fight against spin info war – just stop buying into the politicians and media spin messaging efforts, start thinking for yourself and look for the truth.  Sure, for some partisans, who have become mind-numbed spin robots repeating their side’s spin for many years, the spin detox might take a bit longer… almost like leaving a cult, but for most Americans, it shouldn’t be that hard to break free of the spin.

Start thinking for yourself, instead of relying on other people to think for you.

Be a rebel against spin…

Have a good day, lol.

 

 

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Filed under General Interest, Information War, Politics, The Media

“Reading the report” seems like sound advice

Well, in 24 hours from now the Mueller report will have been released and rapidly dissected by partisans (especially those in the media charading as objective journalists), it will have been churned over on TV news for many hours, it will have been read and dissected in hastily prepared written pieces and of course, on Twitter it will have been spun continuously for almost an entire day.  In the Twitter universe, that’s enough time for several complete spin cycles to launch, peak, be upended by a competing spin narrative, so who knows what the smart takes will be by this time in the wee hours of Friday morning.

Where would American politics be without the Twitter political forum to spin the news for us…

How people view Trump/Russian collusion probably rests on, not just partisanship, but on what parts of the past two years worth of spin people believe. In fact, many anti-Trump people, especially those who follow the anti-Trump media and believe it, will walk away believing Trump got away with being a Russian agent, no matter what facts the Mueller report finds.

On the Left, many anti-Trumpers have bought into the mountains of anti-Trump spin, which were rapidly spun by the mainstream media, before going down in flames within 24-48 hours, as the stories fell apart.  Many people ran with the pants on fire initial reporting and never paid attention to the debunking of those stories.

On the Right, many of the MAGA Trump followers believe all of the Trump and Fox News spin, which casts Trump as the perennial victim of dastardly Leftists.  These people ignore facts, whenever they get in the way of Trump as the victim spin and they conveniently disregard all the disturbing Trump behavior, like the petty name-calling, the impulsive policy shifts that leave his own staff scrambling to figure out what he meant, his fawning over the world’s despots and his  relentless lying.

My prediction is that not much will change in this entrenched domestic spin information war.  Each side will pick and choose bits and pieces to bolster their spin narrative and each side will disregard any parts in the report that don’t bolster their beliefs about Trump/Russian collusion.

I won’t be watching TV news, or be on Twitter or blogging tomorrow… but I might start reading the report, well maybe.  I am busy working on my cross-stitch lately.

Finished the Russian dolls piece – cute.  Sorry for the crooked picture, but I really am terrible at taking photos and even worse at trying to edit them (psst, I put in a corrected photo, because I noticed in rotating the photo thing, I had flipped the sides of the photo – the little Cossack is on the left, not the right):

2019-04-18 09.12.52.jpg

Finished stitching another one of those small, tedious Spring kits:

I also have a bunch of Christmas clearance cross-stitch kits too, so I started a Christmas bunny kit the other day.  Still have some back-stitching to do to finish it.  I hate stitching on the 18 count Aida cloth that comes in these kits, because even with my magnifying lamp and my glasses, it’s a struggle for me to count the squares:

I also started stitching another small kit that I bought last summer when my husband was in the hospital.  I took a trip to a Joann’s store to get a break from the hospital… and bought two more cross-stitch kits.

I love bunnies, btw… So, I have two more of these bunny Christmas kits with different bunny pictures…

And I have this Liberty Bell project too, but that one’s a struggle trying to work on with all the interruptions here, when my husband needs help getting to the bathroom, needs his meals, etc.  These small projects are easy to pick up and stitch a bit, throughout the day.

Yes, it’s probably better to plan for small doses of news today and plan on “reading the actual report”.   Most of the media blathering on won’t read the report, but they will be touted as having the smart takes on it.

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Trumpers grasp fevered spin dreams, again

The Trump-spinners went into overdrive last night based on this news bit:

Attorney General William Barr has assembled a team to investigate how the Russia investigation and other counterintelligence probes began, a U.S. official told CBS News. Barr said in a Congressional hearing Tuesday that he is “reviewing the conduct of the investigation and trying to get my arms around all the aspects of the counterintelligence investigation that was conducted during the summer of 2016.”

https://www.cbsnews.com/news/william-barr-has-team-reviewing-how-investigation-started-official-says/

The DOJ also has an ongoing investigation into 2016 happenings and there’s still the ongoing DOJ-appointed Huber investigation looking into the FBI’s conduct investigating the Trump campaign during 2016.  The Mueller report should have covered all of the Dems claims of Trump campaign corruption in 2016.

The truth is both campaigns were very corrupt and that’s the fact none of the partisans want to face.  The FBI had two criminal investigations of the Clintons in 2016.  The email scandal has always been cast as “Hillary’s homebrew server”, but the truth is Hillary never set up a homebrew server in her home.  Bill Clinton had that private server set up in their home, as his Clinton Foundation server.

The server scandal focused on Hillary failing to turn over State Department emails and keeping them on the private server in their home.  Why she decided to meld  all of her State Department emails onto their private Clinton Foundation server has never been answered.

All of her so-called private emails of yoga schedules and wedding plans glossed over the fact that there had to be Bill Clinton foundation emails on that server, because that’s why HE had that private server set up in their home.  Once Hillary was Secretary of State, she and Huma Abedin had private emails accounts on that server.  Huma Abedin was involved in orchestrating a server upgrade and Huma recommended the Clinton campaign IT guy, Pagliano, to work with Bill Clinton’s IT guy, Cooper, to  set-up an upgraded server.

All of these server details matter, because in the fall of 2016 , news came to light that several FBI field offices were investigating the Clinton Foundation for pay-to-play corruption.  Details of what they were looking at matter too, because if it was the foundation’s foreign big money donations and Hillary was ensconced running the State Department, wouldn’t it be interesting to know if there was private foundation email correspondence back and forth between Abedin and Hillary with Bill Clinton or other Clinton Foundation peeps, capitalizing on the State Department info?  Kind of a cozy relationship the Clintons’ set-up there with that personal foundation server in their home…

And the real question remains, why on earth wasn’t the FBI looking into that server in connection with the Clinton Foundation criminal investigations?  

Yoga schedules, indeed…

While it’s good that the new AG, Bill Barr, is looking into all of this, my prediction is no one in the Clinton campaign or Obama administration will ever be held accountable for 2016 corruption.  I believe the corruption went all the way to the top – to President Obama, based on a Lisa Page text with her lover, Peter Strzok, where she mentioned that the POTUS wanted to be kept updated about the Trump investigations.  The Bill Clinton-orchestrated meeting with Loretta Lynch, leads me to wonder if she had direct communications with President Obama about how to deal with the media fall-out about that meeting.  The top people in the Obama administration weren’t acting independently.

The President Obama corruption is why nothing came of the Hillary email investigation.  The released FBI notes of Huma Abedin’s FBI interview in 2016, indicate that the FBI had a classified President Obama email, which he sent using a private google email account with an alias, to Hillary at her unsecured private server email address…  Top Obama officials, including President Obama, were very careless at handling classified information, not just Hillary.  And that is why nothing was ever going to happen to Hillary.

The same is true for this investigation into the FBI handling of the 2016 investigations into the Trump campaign.   Comey and McCabe weren’t acting alone in these machinations to investigate the Trump campaign.  You can be sure Loretta Lynch and top DOJ officials were part of all of these decisions and actions and you can be sure that President Obama was being kept abreast of every move.

I always think back to this odd August 2015 photo of Bill Clinton and President Obama golfing at Martha’s Vineyard, where Bill Clinton, Obama and old Clinton-fixer, Vernon Jordan, were hitting the links.  The email scandal broke in March 2015 and by August 2015, the story was sucking oxygen out of Hillary’s presidential run.  Bill Clinton wanted that investigation buried and I am sure he dealt with that, one-on-one with President Obama.  By the summer of 2016, and that email investigation still being a weight dragging down Hillary’s campaign, Bill Clinton must have been livid.  And all throughout this media spin storm about Hillary’s emails before the Dem convention, there was Joe Biden in the background, dithering on about whether he was going to enter the race to unite the party.  At the top of the Democratic Party (Obama-level), there had to be a lot of calculations and discussions going on about these FBI criminal investigations of the Clintons and how to deal with the Clintons.

Fox News spinners may be bellowing on about FBI, Clinton and Obama corruption in 2016, but these Trump spin-fever dreams, that someone will be held accountable for the 2016 corruption, will end up being only wishful thinking, I suspect.   Hillary isn’t the only one above the law in America.  The 2016 Dem corruption reaches to two former presidents, Obama and Clinton, whom the American media complex will move heaven and earth to run 24/7 spin damage control operations.

There is no way truth stands a chance against the power of their media spin forces.

 

 

 

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A rambling blog post

Our constant hysterical political climate disgusts me.  Trump’s constant braggadocio, petty attacks and rambling , fact-free word salads disgust me.  The Democrats and media hysterical spin about Trump disgusts me.  As far as political commentary or analysis goes, the various smart takes in 2016 remain the same in 2019, as our American political hamster wheel spins round and round.

For the most part lately, I’ve gotten off the daily habit of tracking the partisan spin throughout the day.  Perhaps if something interesting or new happens, I’ll write about it, but fair warning, the rest of this post will be another detour about my efforts to make peace between our consumerist culture and the myriad counter-cultural efforts to combat our wasteful American lifestyle.

Last night I watched a short CNN video on Twitter about a fashion designer, zero waste daniel, who started a clothing design business using only scrap fabric waste.  His approach of sewing together small scraps of fabric to create larger pieces of fabric, from which to construct his clothing designs, while being a trendy environmental-mindful concept, does highlight our society’s love affair with consumer goods, where most of us acquire way more than we consume and live totally unconcerned about our wastefulness.

There’s a common mindset among more conservative Americans and the political right to dismiss everything coming from the liberal environmentalist echo chamber, but perhaps we should all try to be a little more open to listening and considering the merits of ideas, before making snap partisan political judgments.

Many aspects of our environmentally conscious activism do stem from the political left, then take hold in American businesses, who react to the political activism.  Many businesses respond to and embrace the latest politicized framing of appropriate environmentally conscious policies.  This type of political pressure infuriates many on the right.

On the merits, though, pushing all of the politics aside, being less wasteful, using less disposable packaging and taking a more mindful approach to our consumer habits seem like very traditional, conservative American thrifty values, that would even have appealed to Benjamin Franklin and most of our American founders.  The less wasteful approaches definitely were ingrained habits to my parents and grandparents.

Moving to a crafting/needlework blog post, explains why I haven’t been blogging much lately…  I have been stitching away… using all stuff that’s been sitting here for many years.

I struggle with my consumerist mindset and am working to rethink my relationship with purchasing many items, that clutter up my home,  and often have never been used.  However, moving to a zero waste lifestyle takes way more commitment and effort than I will expend, so it’s small steps in my life.

For decades, I purchased loads of craft and needlework supplies, without much concern or thought about the possibility of having too much stuff.  Yet, the thought of parting with my craft and needlework stuff just isn’t happening yet, but I now strive not to buy more, unless it’s some basic supply that I really need.

A few years ago, I began an effort to make projects using only stuff I already have and that’s what that hummingbird cross-stitch picture above is.  I bought a bunch of small Spring-themed counted cross-stitch kits  (and some not so small ones too) on clearance at Walmart, over the many years that I worked there.  I stitched a couple of these a few years ago and posted a photo, but never fear, I have more to go:

I have a hard time seeing to stitch on 18-count, so I used 14 Aida cloth from my supplies for the  hummingbird and a bunny kit last weekend.  I bought two of the bunny kits, for no logical reason…:

I did finish that Diane Graebner Amish design (out of the hoop and needs pressing):

Learning more about finishing my needlework into some useful or decorative item leads me to read a lot of cross-stitch blogs and browse Pinterest frequently.  That habit leads me to want… more new cross stitch stuff, especially the nicer linens and evenweave fabrics and threads.  It takes a constant effort to remind myself that, while stitching on plain old Aida cloth isn’t as nice as stitching on expensive fabrics, these kits and Aida projects still look nice, I think.

Yesterday afternoon, I was torturing myself looking at the blog of a very talented cross stitch designer, Brenda Gervais.  All of her patterns scream, “I want to stitch that!”.  Gervais wrote a short background story to her 2017 series, Summer Schoolhouse ~ Lessons in Abecedarian.  She relates how she found a small children’s book while hunting for antiques, but it wasn’t just any old book.  It was a copy of the oldest children’s book in the Library of Congress and it’s considered to be the oldest children’s book in print.   This book contains the first documented use of the word, baseball.  In the process of browsing cross stitch blogs, I learned a new word: abecedarian and a bit of historical trivia too.

To fill my fix for something new, there are lots of free patterns online.  I stitched this free St.Patrick’s Day cats piece, by Lynn B., twice.  I am going to make them into little decorative pillows or perhaps frame them, but one is for a family member and then I liked these black cats so much, I stitched one for me too:

Yesterday, was another free pattern start, Russian Dolls, this one from DMC:

Plus, I have a bigger cross stitch project of a Liberty Bell, that’s in progress, but that one deserves a fancier Belfast white linen, not plain old Aida cloth.  Just started this, so it’s only the top of Independence Hall and some of the lettering:

Of course, still working on plastic canvas too:

Not sure what I’ll do with this house picture, but it’s a design that I like, so I stitched it…

It’s very hard for me to concentrate on writing lately, but I’ll try to get back to politics soon.

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The privacy concerns metastasize

Whenever you think you’ve conjured up all the worst-case scenarios with computer viruses, malignant PC attacks and such, along comes another even more alarming potential attack.  Here’s a Washington Post article, in their technology section.  Kim Zetter writes:

“When Hillary Clinton stumbled and coughed through public appearances during her 2016 presidential run, she faced critics who said that she might not be well enough to perform the top job in the country. To quell rumors about her medical condition, her doctor revealed that a CT scan of her lungs showed that she just had pneumonia.

But what if the scan had shown faked cancerous nodules, placed there by malware exploiting vulnerabilities in widely used CT and MRI scanning equipment? Researchers in Israel say they have developed such malware to draw attention to serious security weaknesses in critical medical imaging equipment used for diagnosing conditions and the networks that transmit those images — vulnerabilities that could have potentially life-altering consequences if unaddressed.

The malware they created would let attackers automatically add realistic, malignant-seeming growths to CT or MRI scans before radiologists and doctors examine them. Or it could remove real cancerous nodules and lesions without detection, leading to misdiagnosis and possibly a failure to treat patients who need critical and timely care.”

https://www.washingtonpost.com/technology/2019/04/03/hospital-viruses-fake-cancerous-nodes-ct-scans-created-by-malware-trick-radiologists/?utm_term=.a89a2e489387

All I can say is I’m glad I read this article today and not last week when I received a breast biopsy report with good news,  from my radiologist.  The potential for, dare I say, “malignant” actors to invade people’s privacy and cause egregious harm here boggles my mind.

With the privacy concerns continually metastasizing (sorry, I couldn’t help myself here), in many ways, I think we were all a bit safer and our personal privacy was more secure before the world became interconnected.

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