from June 4, 2018
This is a
Nederlog of Monday,
This is a crisis
log but it is a bit different from how it was until 2013:
I have been
writing about the crisis since September
1, 2008 (in Dutch, but
since 2010 in English) and about
the enormous dangers of surveillance (by secret services and
by many rich commercial entities) since June 10, 2013, and I will
continue with it.
moment and since more than two years
problems with the company that is
supposed to take care that my site is visible 
and with my health, but I am still writing a Nederlog every day and
I shall continue.
2. Crisis Files
These are five crisis files
that are all well worth reading:
A. Selections from June 4, 2018:
1. The Second Sight of W.E.B. Du Bois
The items 1 - 5
are today's selections from the 35
sites that I look at every morning. The indented text under each link
is quoted from the link that starts the item. Unindented text is by me:
2. Facebook Gave Device Makers Deep Access to Data on Users
3. Renowned Economist Turns Psychologist on Donald Trump:
4. A Second American Civil War?
Trump Might Be Leading the US to Another
Second Sight of W.E.B. Du Bois
article is by Chris Hedges on Truthdig. It was originally a speech,
starts as follows:
Bois, more than any intellectual this nation produced in the first
half of the 20th century, explained America to itself. He did this not
only through what he called the “color line” but by exposing the
intertwining of empire, capitalism and white supremacy. He deftly fused
academic disciplines. He possessed unwavering integrity, a deep
commitment to the truth, and the courage to speak it. That he was
brilliant and a radical was bad enough. That he was brilliant, radical
and black terrified the ruling elites. He was swiftly blacklisted,
denied the professorships and public platforms that went to those who
were more obsequious and compliant.
I think all of this is
quite correct. (I do know a little about W.E.B. Du Bois, indeed
communist background - that dates back nearly 50 years now - but not
Here is more:
purification through violence is the credo of the American empire. D.H. Lawrence,
like Du Bois, saw it, and said, “The essential American soul is hard,
isolate, stoic, and a killer.” The pillars of American capitalism are
genocide and slavery. America was not blessed by God. It was blessed,
if that is the right word, by producing the most efficient killing
machines and trained killers on the planet. It unleashed industrial
violence on its enemies abroad and empowered armed white vigilante
groups and gun thugs—the slave
patrols, the Ku Klux Klan, the White Leagues
(the armed wing of the Democratic Party), the Baldwin
Felts and Pinkertons—to perpetrate a domestic reign of terror
against blacks, Native Americans, Mexicans, Chinese, abolitionists,
Catholics, radicals, workers and labor organizers.
I think this is probably a
fair statement, but I disagree with the beginning, for I never
Lawrence and think (like Bertrand Russell)
he was close to fascism, while he also was a sadist
and a nut in various respects.
Here is the last bit that I quote from this article:
The underclass, then
and now, was to be taught what to think, not how to think. They would
be endowed with just enough numerical literacy to serve as serfs in the
capitalist system. The capitalists were determined to maintain what Du
Bois called “enforced ignorance,” an enforced ignorance now being
visited on a dispossessed working class with the degrading of public
education, funding of vocational charter schools, and withering away of
Quite so! Then again, I
replace ¨ïgnorance¨ by ¨ignorance and stupidity¨, but
even without that
replacement Du Bois was quite right, and one of the very few
who spoke publicly
about the major dangers of ignorance (that these days gets spread
“Either America will
destroy ignorance or ignorance will destroy the United States,” he
warned, an eerie forecast of the age of Trump.
There is considerably more in the rest of the article, that is
Gave Device Makers Deep Access to Data on Users and Friends
article is by Gabriel Dance, Nicholas Confessore, and Michael LaForgia
on The New York Times. It starts as follows:
Well... first of all I strongly
disagree that Facebook is called one of the ¨social media¨: It
a-social as anything I´ve know in the last 68 years, and it is so because
Mark Zuckerberg is probably the most dishonest man
alive, for he is and has been stealing billions upon billions
private mails from his users (whom he regards as ¨dumb fucks ...
Facebook sought to become the world’s dominant social media service, it
struck agreements allowing phone and other device makers access to vast
amounts of its users’ personal information.
Facebook has reached
data-sharing partnerships with at least 60 device makers — including
Apple, Amazon, BlackBerry, Microsoft and Samsung — over the last
decade, starting before Facebook apps were widely available on
smartphones, company officials said.
But the partnerships, whose
scope has not previously been reported, raise concerns about the
company’s privacy protections and compliance with a 2011 consent decree
with the Federal Trade Commission. Facebook allowed the device
companies access to the data of users’ friends without their explicit
consent, even after declaring that it would no longer share such
information with outsiders. Some device makers could retrieve personal
information even from users’ friends who believed they had barred any
sharing, The New York Times found.
I am not a ¨dumb fuck¨; I am not, never have been, and never
will be a
member of Facebook; and I regard Zuckerberg as one of the biggest
criminals there is.
And indeed ¨Facebook allowed the
device companies access to the data of users’ friends without their
explicit consent, even after declaring that it would no longer share
such information with outsiders. Some device makers could retrieve
personal information even from users’ friends who believed they had
barred any sharing¨ is - once
again - based on lies
Then there is this. After
Cambridge Analytica (which acquired 87 million private sets of
information from Facebook, mostly about Americans, which may have
helped Trump to become president)
leaders said that the kind of access exploited by Cambridge in 2014 was
cut off by the next year, when Facebook prohibited developers from
collecting information from users’ friends. But the company officials
did not disclose that Facebook had exempted the makers of cellphones,
tablets and other hardware from such restrictions.
So Zuckerberg lied and deceived
once again, in fact I think billions
of its users, for
most users use cellphones or tablets.
Here are more lies by ¨Facebook
probably lie as
and as easily as Zuckerberg and for the same reason: money
interviews, Facebook officials defended the data sharing as consistent
with its privacy policies, the F.T.C. agreement and pledges to users.
They said its partnerships were governed by contracts that strictly
limited use of the data, including any stored on partners’ servers. The
officials added that they knew of no cases where the information had
company views its device partners as extensions of Facebook, serving
its more than two billion users, the officials said.
readers probably did not see Facebook´s lies in the previous
Well... here is the explanation:
Precisely. There is a lot
in this article, which is recommended.
view that the device makers are not outsiders lets the partners go even
further, The Times found: They can obtain data about a user’s Facebook
friends, even those who have denied Facebook permission to share
information with any third parties.
“It’s like having door locks installed, only to find out that the
locksmith also gave keys to all of his friends so they can come in and
rifle through your stuff without having to ask you for permission,”
said Ashkan Soltani, a research and privacy consultant who formerly
served as the F.T.C.’s chief technologist.
Renowned Economist Turns Psychologist on Donald Trump: 'He's a
Delusional, Psychopathic Threat'
article is by Hal Brown on AlterNet and originally on Daily Kos. It
starts as follows:
The word is getting out.
Finally. After numerous psychotherapists weighed in on assessing Trump
as being not only psychologically unfit to be president, but alarmingly
(as the expert contributors to a best selling book put it in their title) a
Yes indeed, but I have
three comments on this, as a psychologist (and not a
¨psychotherapist, nor a psychiatrist), who has said since the beginning of 2016 that
Trump is insane (and at the end of 2016 I produced this: Is Donald Trump mentally ill?
- and my answer was: Yes, he is).
First, I am a
psychologist, not a psychotherapist nor a psychiatrist.
This is somewhat important, because there are more
psychologists than psychiatrists (the former have a degree in
psychology, the last in medicine); because - to the best of my
knowledge - more psychologists than psychiatrists agreed that
Trump is insane (this may be phrased more politely, but this is what he
is); and also because many psychologists - and I am one of them
- disagree in various ways with psychiatry and psychiatrists.
for one example, I did see the DSM-III - the psychiatrists´
handbook, and this one from the 1980ies - once during the time
I was becoming a psychologist, but only
because a friend had bought a copy: it was completely non-treated
all the courses I took, and it was so because most Dutch psychologists
disagreed with it.)
Second, I am fairly
skeptical that ¨The word
is getting out¨. And I am
not saying this because psychologists and psychiatrists who think that Trump is a megalomaniac aka
narcissist (which he is by evidently satisfying 9 out 9
criterions) have been silent, but because in over two years I have read
some about this, I have seen this almost only in the non-mainstream
press, which is far less read than the mainstream.
And third, while indeed
I disagree with each and any of the DSMs, and disagree with very much
psychiatry, the DSMs have one advantage: The diagnoses it suggests are
made on the basis of observational characteristics, not
on on the basis of theories. And this allows me and many other
psychologists and psychiatrists to look at Trump´s behavior and words,
and diagnose him.
Also, while psychiatry
is in many ways mistaken, it is ¨the best¨ we have.
Next, there is this:
American economist Jeffrey Sachs has written a scathing takedown of
President Donald Trump, calling him a delusional,
psychopathic “threat to the nation and the world.”
He might be a “Manchurian Candidate” who is working as a “stooge” for some foreign power to
destroy the U.S., Sachs wrote on CCN’s website Friday, referring to the
spy movie thriller.
“Much more likely, Trump is
just mentally unstable and narcissistic,” he added, calling the new announcement of tariffs on exports from
Canada, Mexico and the European Union part of a “psychopath’s trade
I agree with Jeffrey
Sachs about Donald Trump.
And there is another
remark I should make about psychologists and psychiatrists and indeed
also about medical persons: In fact, these three groups of people (and
their assistants) are the only persons who have seen (or who
may have seen) quite a few of insane persons.
people, however intelligent, have not, and indeed often have
little idea what insane persons are like, and tend to classify the few
they see as suffering from extreme emotions such as anger, sadness etc.
and not in psychological/psychiatric terms, which indeed is
Here is some more:
Sachs uses the word
gibbering in his title which is an unfortunate choice in my
opinion because the crucial word in the title is delusional. This is a
psychiatric term. Addressing trade policy and tariffs, the
economist says Trump is “mentally unstable and narcissistic.”
Exactly! He could just as easily be trying to make sense of
Trump’s approach to N. Korea.
On CNN Sachs said that we “probably
never before had a delusional president, one who speaks gibberish,
insults those around him including his closest associates, and baffles
the world. We strive to make sense of Trump’s nonsense, implicitly
assuming some hidden strategy. There is none.”
There’s no reason for an
educated person to be “baffled” by Trump’s behavior. Every Trump
utterance, every decision, which has caused sensible observers to be
puzzled and troubled because they seemed abnormal, unhinged, and
incoherent can be explained by Trump's psychopathology.
Well, ¨delusional¨ is
(of course) also a psychological term. And I explain Sach´s
usage of gibbering by the fact that he is not a psychologist or
psychiatrist: Indeed, Trump is often producing gibberish (which
tends to repeat very often at least two times) from the point
of English, and yes, gibberish (that is meant by the speaker) very well
may be delusional.
And I agree mostly with
what Sachs said.
Here is the last bit I
quote from this article:
I agree and this
is a strongly recommended article.
clinical psychologist Dr. John Gartner started a petition
demanding that Trump be removed under the 25th Amendment: “We Have a Duty to Warn the World About Donald Trump.”
This came at a time when
few people even knew what it was. Now everyone following the
psychological decompensation of Trump knows what it is, including
The “real answer” is to
remove Trump from office using the 25th Amendment to replace him, Sachs concludes.
“Trump is unwell and
unfit to be president. He is a growing threat to the nation and the
emperor had no clothes. This president has no sense,” he
It is gratifying that more
and more experts in fields other than psychology are putting it all
4. A Second American
This article is by Robert Reich on his site. It starts as
Imagine that an impeachment
resolution against Trump passes the House. Trump claims it’s the work
of the “deep
state.” Fox News’s Sean Hannity demands every honest patriot take
to the streets. Rightwing
social media call for war. As insurrection spreads, Trump commands the
forces to side with the “patriots.”
Or it’s November 2020 and
lost the election. He charges voter fraud, claiming that the “deep
organized tens of millions of illegal immigrants to vote against him,
he has an obligation not to step down. Demonstrations and riots ensue.
commands the armed forces to put them down.
If these sound far-fetched,
consider Trump’s torrent of lies, his admiration for foreign dictators,
jokes about being “president for life” (Xi Xinping “was
able to do that,” he told admirers in March. “I think it’s great. Maybe
give that a shot some day.’), and his increasing invocation of a “deep
plot against him.
I completely agree with
Reich that this is not ¨far-fetched¨ at all - and for reasons
why, see the previous article I reviewed today.
Here is more:
In his 2013 novel “A
Delicate Truth,” John le Carré describes the
“deep state” as a moneyed élite — “non-governmental insiders from
industry, and commerce” who rule in secret.
America already may be
close to that sort
of deep state. As Princeton professor Martin
Gilens and Professor Benjamin Page of Northwestern University found
analyzing 1,799 policy issues that came before Congress, “the
the average American appear to have only a miniscule, near-zero,
non-significant impact upon public policy.”
Instead, Gilens and Page concluded,
lawmakers respond to the policy demands of wealthy individuals and
I more or less agree with
John le Carré, except that I might have said, referring back to
complex (of 1960) as non-governmental
insiders from the military, the industry (especially military
industries), the banks, and commerce, who do make many of the decisions
the government should have made - except indeed that this is too
long. (And see again - if you care - why Robert Paul Wolff was talking
about the deep state: see here.)
And I summarize research by
Gilens and Page (which was quite good) by simply saying that - on my
opinion, at least - the USA has ceased to be a real democracy and
turned into a real plutocracy, and indeed I may refer to Gilens and
as one collection of strong evidence for my thesis.
Reich ends as follows:
I agree and this
is a recommended article.
A second civil war?
Probably not. But
the way Trump and his defenders are behaving, it’s not absurd to
imagine serious social unrest. That’s how low he’s taken us.
Might Be Leading the US to Another Meltdown
article is by Larry Beinhart on Common Dreams and originally on
Al-Jazeera. It starts as follows:
The US financial
regulatory agencies have weakened banking rules.
Then in late May,
Congress voted to weaken them even further.
after the Volcker Rule which prohibits banks from making risky
investments with depositors' money.
Yes indeed. Here is
After the crash of
1929, banks started failing en masse. It should be noted that before
the crash, there was little regulation and less enforcement, and
through the 1920s, an average of 600 banks a year went under. Then came
the "New Deal". It launched an immediate rescue of the banks and added
a host of regulations. Bank failures virtually
disappeared from the late 1930s until 1980. During most of those
years, the number of bank failures was in the single digits.
In the early 1980s,
however, one sector of the banking system, in particular, was
deregulated - savings and loans. These were actually the
kind of local, community banks depicted in the movie, "It's A Wonderful
Life". They were small, boring, and very safe. With deregulation,
savings and loans were suddenly given a license to steal. The owners of
the banks were not stealing from the banks, they were using the banks -
with their respectability, their institutional and political clout, and
their staffs - to do the stealing.
Out of 3,234 savings and loans associations, 1,043 went under between
1986 and 1995. Almost every bank that collapsed or had to be closed,
had engaged in frauds. The amount of fraud involved in the Crash of
2008 was probably the same.
I say! I did not know
already between 1986 and 1995 1 out of 3 banks collapsed, due to
Reagan´s deregulations, and that
this hardly happened between the late 1930s until 1980. This is also a good
summary, but it should have been added that while the banks´ managers
were not stealing from themselves, they were (and are) abusing
the banks´ clients
Here is the last bit I
quote from this article, which in fact is about the mentality of
rich - say, the 1% of the richest there are:
The idea of working
people making more money, and themselves, perhaps less, has zero
appeal. The only thing left to do is change the rules. They know
perfectly well they can enrich themselves selling rubbish. If they
bring the house down, someone else will pay the cost. Hence, they push
for deregulation which eventually will bring down the financial sector,
as has happened before.
In other words: They
abuse the deregulations to get as rich as possible themselves, and
don´t mind any social collapse (which will cause enormous
hundreds of millions) simply because they are rich enough to
This is a recommended
have now been
end of 2015 that
xs4all.nl is systematically
ruining my site by NOT updating it within a few seconds,
as it did between 1996 and 2015, but by updating it between
two to seven days later, that is, if I am lucky.
claimed that my site was wrongly named in html: A lie.
They have claimed that my operating system was out of date: A lie.
just don't care for my site, my interests, my values or my
ideas. They have behaved now for 2 years
as if they are the
eagerly willing instruments of the US's secret services, which I
from now on suppose they are (for truth is dead in Holland).
two reasons I remain with xs4all is that my site has been
there since 1996, and I have no reasons whatsoever to suppose that any
other Dutch provider is any better (!!).