LIONEL PODCAST: Why Mainstream Media News Can’t Recognize Their Own Extinction

Let’s start with the abecedarian: The current crop of mainstream network media news robots are simply idiots. Is that limpid enough? I should stop right there as the clarity of message won’t improve. But I shan’t. It’s critical that you grasp this. And understand that this is not a toothless indictment. I’m dead serious. James S. Ettema and Theodore L. Glasser called investigative journalism “custodians of conscience.” they likened it to social and moral inquiry and public virtue. I remind you of such because there was a time before selfies and narcissistic self-adoration. If there’s any hope it’s for local news because the subject matter is so directed: fires, arrests, crime, weather, sports. Though I’ve never quite understood the concept of traffic reportage on television. Think about it. (But not for long.)

I don’t care about the news, I care about being a star. Newsrooms and outfits are jammed with media star wannabes. Distracted and disjointed alleged and putative news gatherers, biased and partisan apparatchiks skewing and narrowcasting – not journalists or reporters but would-be stars and viral hitster hipsters. The next entrant in the hottest reporter contest, the red carpet traipser. Just look at Brian Williams’s own foray into celebrity adoration. I’ve no proof, but I suspect that if the truth be known, Ol’ BW would rather sit on Fallon’s couch than behind the desk waxing stentorian as he reads the prompter.

It’s not a matter of youth per se but chronic inexperience and no perspective. Sure, there are newser tyros who’ve no perspective but it’s not about youth and inexperience. Not to mention no history, no knowledge, no idea of the cyclical phenomenon of news and world affairs. They’re organically incurious and without the ability to be suspect, proudly so at that. They’ve become the conduit for administrations, de facto press agents. Repeaters and not reporters. Presstitutes, as the great Gerald Celente offers, their hearts and limited minds available to the highest bidder. Slow on the draw, quick to the conclusion. Obama acolytes and fawning sycophants, many are. Boot lickers and toadies. Obsequious lickspittles. Still walking zombified with “Hope and Change” reverberating in their memory sticks. Part and parcel of the insane left-right paradigm, followers of the notion that there are significant differences between parties. Still arguing at the internecine, interstitial level.

Retreads, resurrected, recycled museum pieces just entered the building. And the executive and management level of network news appears to be no better. Let’s really focus the gravamen of this indictment accordingly. Concerned and focused on the bottom line. P/L versus MOS. Especially in a shrinking media world. Shuttered newsrooms, budgets slashed, resources crippled. Make it fast and cheap. Dangle the keys in front of the screaming infant. Many of these pathetic news stewards retreads are recycled and regurgitated escapees of media from eons of yore. Those who cut their teeth at a time when media news reportage was considered rarefied and noble, victims of their own deluded unwarranted entitlement and chichi pretentiousness. These are dinosaurs more often than not who actually still believe that the days of cautious, crafted and paralyzing boring news presentation will fly today. And it’s not just TV news but the antediluvian world of terrestrial left-right talk radio — but that’s for another day.

The new breed of witless. And if the antediluvian codger’s not bad enough, enter the “rising star,” the prototypical know-nothing who made her bones in another medium that someone figured would perfectly merge into news. Or the ex-intern who made friends and was first on the list for hires do to a sparkling personality or per stirpes consanguinity with a higher-up. The yoga mat totin’ pseudo-intellect and autodidact (at best) who breaks the record for pretentiousness and throws an errant Ayn Rand quote about and conspicuously carries the latest Economist under her arm. Bogus, ersatz and fictive. And what do these two prototypes have in common? Plenty. They’re clueless.

New and alternative media: operational Darwinism and natural selection with a building pass. And whilst the aforementioned supra run in circles, alternative media and new platforms and delivery systems are blowing them out of the water. Citizen journalism at levels of sophistication that are increasingly mind-boggling. And I’m not talking production level – though they’re beyond the amateurish of yore – I’m talking the level of deep-levels of critical analysis and a conversance with and of the facts that are nonpareil. Irrespective of the subject matter, deep research and data mining rival anything that the more traditional (translation: hoary and cobwebbed) media sources employ. No, my friend, the world for the media moribund is collapsing onto itself like a black hole. And instead of light not being able to escape, truth and viewership can’t escape. Mark my words, within two years – two years! – you will not even recognize what used to be called the heralded and bejeweled halcyon days of media Gloria. So long, Murrow; sayonara, Cronkite. The world has just changed but you were too busy waxing funereal over Jeter’s retirement or the latest antics of the NFL cobbling together a nonexistent domestic violence policy. Consider yourself warned. There are hosts of demos and factions, from millennials to the senescent, in every race, sexual identity or stratum. There are millions who want to know about conspiracy facts not theories, about the dark side of governments, rogue elements, the crippling dynamics of central bank chicanery and deception. They want to know about the fictional and tissue thin veneer of the imaginary wars on terror and the like. They see through the absolute egesta of ISIS and ISIL and can in a flash name all the permutations of the new costumed bogeymen. You are experiencing a new dimension of thought and analysis and I am absolutely honored beyond woods to join the revolution. Hie!

Thought for the day. American exceptionalism has transmogrified into American delusion. Delusion fueled by an active and virulent nescience as to the framers’ intent for our republic. Here, St. Gore of Vidal offered this gem of gems.

We should stop going around babbling about how we’re the greatest democracy on earth, when we’re not even a democracy. We are a sort of militarized republic. The founding fathers hated two things, one was monarchy and the other was democracy, they gave us a constitution that saw to it we will have neither. I don’t know how wise they were.

“Gore Vidal and the Mind of the Terrorist”, interview by Ramona Koval, Australian Broadcasting Corporation, Radio National (November 2001)

LIONEL PODCAST: Something Horrible Is About To Happen. Mark My Words.

Melted and damaged mannequins after a fire at Madam Tussaud’s Wax Museum in London, March 1925

Hauntingly seductive. The Madame Tussaud’s fire was quite the story and originally published in the Manchester Guardian on 19 March 1925. How creepy is this? You thought these were real at first, be honest. Especially the heads strewn about on the floor. Shades of ISIS, right? Look how realistic these look. And look how easy it is to create the illusion of disaster. And using 1925 standards, no less. The symbolism of beheading transcends anything that the garden variety terrorist can invoke or convey. Much of what you see is illusion, I’m sorry to say. And illusion doesn’t necessarily connote creating something that’s really not there. It also represents exaggerating something into an imagery that fuels a heightened horror exaggeratedly.

Is POTUS safe? Are there not-so-veiled messages being given as to dissatisfaction with this administration. I’m not alone in asking this question. Foreign media, in particular. In my lifetime I saw a President struck down in broad daylight before the world. These incidents should shock this country to its core. Wake up. And now, after the umpteenth breach of the President’s security perimeter, our feckless and impuissant mainstream media stand around sucking their thumb and scratching their arse.

Rogue networks and dark forces lie within the recesses of government. They exist because we look the other way. We care not to wax conspiratorial or embrace the psycopathy of the ruling class. That’s scary and icky and it destroys the tissue thin veneer of our self-imposed delusion. I’m tired of coups, in my country. No more. No mas.

Watch my Twitter feed this week for more updates on this in particular. And pay attention. I fear the worst, if history means anything. Expose the internecine plotters. Open your eyes. This isn’t Game of Thrones. It’s even more medieval, more Machiavellian, more Venetian in its sinister basis.

The Corbett Report. I had a wonderful time visiting with the inimitable James Corbett of the eponymous report. I commend you to his site here. The subject was fascinating: Little Brother. But watch the twist, two ways to take and understand the concept. Most fascinating. James Corbett also references “suevaillance,” the means of attacking and addressing impermissible surveillance through the art of litigation. Pithy, eh?

 

 

LIONEL PODCAST: Call Me Disproportionate

Technically, this is not an assault weapon. No group annoys me more than the gun nuts. Those nuts about those nuts about guns. They have a disproportionate enmity and focus on that which they know absolutely nothing about. But why should any semblance of rudimentary knowledge be a part of forging and forcing an opinion on a subject of Constitutional significance? It’s so . . . oh, what’s the word. Yes, disproportionate.

The word comes to mind when I recall listening to yet another Middle East expert wax inane about, you guessed it, Israel and Hamas. Note, I said Hamas versus Gaza. And this expert repeated seemingly without surcease that her main objection was the disproportionate use of force. By Hamas, I asked? No, of course not, she stomped. As the discussion continued I asked whether the point of war was to be disproportionate. After all what is a proportionate or proportional war? The point of this example was to show how an argument can be crafted and culled and presented in a way that’s not so much critical thinking but the rote and patellar of catchphrases and shibboleths, all the product of a Pavlovian obeisance to the script. That’s not to say that these folks have not a valid basis of objection or concern, oh no. But it does say and show that so much of political concerns are expressed via the memorized rant. Take the Brothers Koch. How many times have you seen the internalized, rehearsed screed pour from the lips of the robotized opinionater? Too many to count, I’ll say.

This has absolutely nothing to do with anything. But that never stopped me. If you’ve ever worked in a corporate setting, you’ve undoubtedly seen the lifer. The never going to leave, never go to be replaced secretary, program director or corporate robot. Just once I’d love to hear this as an outgoing recorded phone message.

“You’ve reached ____, technically and theoretically the ____ of this institution. Well, that’s my title. Titular, to be sure. Actually I couldn’t hire or fire the cleaning woman as I’ve no real power. I’m just a corporate place setter. I don’t return calls or emails. I just lay low. Hoping no one realizes that I actually do nothing. If I make my way to the ladies room, I’ll carry a clipboard or box, something that conveys the idea that I’m doing something. I’ve done pretty well for myself considering the turmoil of the economy and the vicissitudes of real life. I’ve been through every incarnation of this company and seem to always survive the cut, primarily because no one knows I’m even here, to be honest. I actually took maternity leave and came back and no one knew I was gone. I leave my office door constantly open with the lights on and with a sweater on the back of my chair, like I just stepped out. I’m like herpes. I lie dormant for a while then flair up. Just to remind you I’m here. But I never go away. In fact, you can’t get rid of me because of the incredible paper trail I’ve amassed. I’ve got the boys upstairs by the short hairs and could nail the lot of them on racial, sexual, ethnic and/or age discrimination. Pick your poison. HR has a special division dedicated just to me. I’ve kept all the emails and late night drunken text messages. Just try to get rid of me. I dare you. After the tone, please leave a message and have a nice day.”

And now the star of the show. The podcast. The cast of pod. Listen, enjoy and sink neath the comfy percales of downy logic. Your welcome.

LIONEL PODCAST: ISIS-SCHMISIS! Unearthing the Sordid History of the American Nightmare and Welcome to Hydro-Imperialism

The never-ending, revolving door of terror bogeymen. I commend to you a most fascinating piece that highlights and details the deep-seated and internecine rudiments of the history of the latex chimera that’s been added to your horror palette. John McCain, Conductor of the “Arab Spring” and the Caliph by French intellectual, founder and chairman of Voltaire Network and the Axis for Peace Conference, Thierry Meyssan, an intellectual of the first order who dissects, deconstructs and denudes the multiple layers of fact and fiction unabashedly and valiantly. Why nothing from our own truth sentries, the self-appointed American media, who sink lower into the bog of bottom feeders by showing not a shred or iota of curiosity about anything. Oh, pardon me. No, I stand corrected. When it comes to sex videos of Neanderthal athletes, nude photos purloined from the clouds, celebrity deaths (within reason, mind you), anything that is relevance-shallow and sordidness-dense, they’re all over it and own it. But we shan’t worry about their puerile preoccupations, will we? No, we’re focused, laser-like on the relevant and what matters.

It’s a story as old as time. Since petro-imperialism emerged, Western ruling class members wanted to crush the British influence that was enjoyed in and around the Arabian Peninsula. And the easiest way to do that was the tried and true method of arming and organizing groups, factions, tribes and sects that posed a direct and lethal threat to those whom you wanted to depose or dispossess. The problem, as is evident to anyone with two neurons to rub together and working synapses, is that once a group is introduced to leverage against a foe, you’re more often than not unable to withdraw the group you’ve introduced. Look no further than UBL and the mujaheddin in Zbigniew Brzezinski’s war based on a massive hard-on he had for that which was the Soviet Union. The story made absolute sense and for a good movie. Problem is, Sparky, you create a monster in the mean time. But not to worry, that’s what the media are here for.

Ted Baxter, the Patron Saint of the Insipid Media. Since the days of Operation Mockingbird it’s been obvious and evident that media sources were at the beck and call of the CIA and various government agencies.

“You could get a journalist cheaper than a good call girl, for a couple hundred dollars a month.” – CIA operative discussing with Philip Graham, editor Washington Post, on the availability and prices of journalists willing to peddle CIA propaganda and cover stories. “Katherine The Great,” by Deborah Davis (New York: Sheridan Square Press, 1991)

The groundwork was laid. The connections cemented. So, is it any wonder that the average American has at best a fanciful ideation of the realities that are the world? Go to any newsroom and look around. Gone are the seasoned vets, the vetted vets, the adults, the experienced, the schooled in history, the unabashedly brilliant and erudite, the delightfully suspect and skeptical. Look around the newsrooms of American media outlets today and what do you see? Under the stewardship of the recycled lifer, the has-beens of yore, the corporate shill, the bottom line watchdog, look and see the new crop of journalists. The 20-something per diem’d serfs, manning a gutted newsscape, shuttered resources and scuttled passions for unearthing and illuminating.

It’s no wonder America scratches its arse in bemused, confused and oddly amused superimposition of the bad guys and terrorists. That’s the cover for the bad guys, the ruling class. The asset-stripping jackals, globalist hyenas and predatory derivatives snake oil salesman who’s helped in creating this gossamer latticework, this tissue and veil of meaningless securities fictions that will most assuredly result in the implosion of world monetary systems through corrupt central banks and . . . under the protection of the duped media who divert the attention of the American people. Like a parent who jiggles her keys to quiet a squawking infant, wailing and lachrymating in fear.

Media branches are now feeder systems and pipelines for the government and the official story. They’re repeaters, not reporters. “Presstitutes,” using the Celente moniker.

Water, water, every where, Nor any drop to drink. The oft-misquoted line from The Rime of the Ancient Mariner by Coleridge. How appropriate and timely for neoimperialism will be the motivation and impetus of the next casus belli. After rare earth metals and lithium. But I’m getting ahead of myself.

A fascinating article on hydro-imperialism appeared in Global Research. Am I covering too many items, too many areas of concern. This I know your media have covered not.

According to the U.S.-based Center for Public Integrity, Western nations stand to make up to a US$1 trillion from privatizing, purifying and distributing water in a region where water often sells for far more than oil.

Although over two thirds of our planet is water, we face an acute shortage. This scarcity flies in the face of our natural assumptions. The problem is that 97 percent is salt water. Great for fish, not so good for humans. Of the world’s fresh water, only one percent is available for drinking, with the remaining two percent trapped in glaciers and ice.

Put differently: if all the water on earth was represented by an 11-litre jug, the freshwater would fill a single cup, and we can only access the last drop. [e.s.]

Now, just imagine that. I have.

The Transitive Property of Terror: IS = ISIS = ISIL = Al Nusra Front = Tanzim Qa’edat Al-Jihad fi Bilad Al-Sham = Daʿesh = Jabhat al-Nusra = FSA = al Qaeda = CIA = Saudi Arabia

I am he as you are he as you are me and we are all together.

All right, kids, from the top. They are one and the same. Different sons, same mother. same ideology, same goal. same pretextual significance. The cornerstone of Hegelian Dialectics. The hodgepodge and amalgam of funny sounding names you’ll never master or care to. And certainly not the American mainstream media. And look who’s front and center, collaborating with the rat Pack of terrorism. Mr. Potter. Johnny Boy. You will never be able to so much as grasp the complexity of the con unless and until you embrace the fact that it is indeed a con. From Charlie Wilson’s war to Zbigniew Brzezinski and al Qaeda and Taliban.

Even the Gipper minded not sidling up with the enemy of my enemy.

Referred to lovingly and euphemistically as “Freedom Fighters,” Ronnie Reagan meets Afghan Mujahideen leaders at the White House. See how easy that is?

The following is an excellent tutorial and bill of particulars as to some of the abecedarian basics of the way it be, as the kids are wont to say. And you’d think that just one media type, just one, would see it wise to explain the rudiments.

America Created Al-Qaeda and the ISIS Terror Group

By Garikai Chengu

Much like Al Qaeda, the Islamic State (ISIS) is made-in-the-USA, an instrument of terror designed to divide and conquer the oil-rich Middle East and to counter Iran’s growing influence in the region.

The fact that the United States has a long and torrid history of backing terrorist groups will surprise only those who watch the news and ignore history.

The CIA first aligned itself with extremist Islam during the Cold War era. Back then, America saw the world in rather simple terms: on one side, the Soviet Union and Third World nationalism, which America regarded as a Soviet tool; on the other side, Western nations and militant political Islam, which America considered an ally in the struggle against the Soviet Union.

The director of the National Security Agency under Ronald Reagan, General William Odom recently remarked, “by any measure the U.S. has long used terrorism. In 1978-79 the Senate was trying to pass a law against international terrorism – in every version they produced, the lawyers said the U.S. would be in violation.”

During the 1970′s the CIA used the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt as a barrier, both to thwart Soviet expansion and prevent the spread of Marxist ideology among the Arab masses. The United States also openly supported Sarekat Islam against Sukarno in Indonesia, and supported the Jamaat-e-Islami terror group against Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto in Pakistan. Last but certainly not least, there is Al Qaeda.

Lest we forget, the CIA gave birth to Osama Bin Laden and breastfed his organization during the 1980′s. Former British Foreign Secretary, Robin Cook, told the House of Commons that Al Qaeda was unquestionably a product of Western intelligence agencies. Mr. Cook explained that Al Qaeda, which literally means an abbreviation of “the database” in Arabic, was originally the computer database of the thousands of Islamist extremists, who were trained by the CIA and funded by the Saudis, in order to defeat the Russians in Afghanistan.

America’s relationship with Al Qaeda has always been a love-hate affair. Depending on whether a particular Al Qaeda terrorist group in a given region furthers American interests or not, the U.S. State Department either funds or aggressively targets that terrorist group. Even as American foreign policy makers claim to oppose Muslim extremism, they knowingly foment it as a weapon of foreign policy.

The Islamic State is its latest weapon that, much like Al Qaeda, is certainly backfiring. ISIS recently rose to international prominence after its thugs began beheading American journalists. Now the terrorist group controls an area the size of the United Kingdom.

In order to understand why the Islamic State has grown and flourished so quickly, one has to take a look at the organization’s American-backed roots. The 2003 American invasion and occupation of Iraq created the pre-conditions for radical Sunni groups, like ISIS, to take root. America, rather unwisely, destroyed Saddam Hussein’s secular state machinery and replaced it with a predominantly Shiite administration. The U.S. occupation caused vast unemployment in Sunni areas, by rejecting socialism and closing down factories in the naive hope that the magical hand of the free market would create jobs. Under the new U.S.-backed Shiite regime, working class Sunni’s lost hundreds of thousands of jobs. Unlike the white Afrikaners in South Africa, who were allowed to keep their wealth after regime change, upper class Sunni’s were systematically dispossessed of their assets and lost their political influence. Rather than promoting religious integration and unity, American policy in Iraq exacerbated sectarian divisions and created a fertile breading ground for Sunni discontent, from which Al Qaeda in Iraq took root.

The Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) used to have a different name: Al Qaeda in Iraq. After 2010 the group rebranded and refocused its efforts on Syria.

There are essentially three wars being waged in Syria: one between the government and the rebels, another between Iran and Saudi Arabia, and yet another between America and Russia. It is this third, neo-Cold War battle that made U.S. foreign policy makers decide to take the risk of arming Islamist rebels in Syria, because Syrian President, Bashar al-Assad, is a key Russian ally. Rather embarrassingly, many of these Syrian rebels have now turned out to be ISIS thugs, who are openly brandishing American-made M16 Assault rifles.

****

ISIS is not merely an instrument of terror used by America to topple the Syrian government; it is also used to put pressure on Iran.

The last time Iran invaded another nation was in 1738. Since independence in 1776, the U.S. has been engaged in over 53 military invasions and expeditions. Despite what the Western media’s war cries would have you believe, Iran is clearly not the threat to regional security, Washington is. An Intelligence Report published in 2012, endorsed by all sixteen U.S. intelligence agencies, confirms that Iran ended its nuclear weapons program in 2003. Truth is, any Iranian nuclear ambition, real or imagined, is as a result of American hostility towards Iran, and not the other way around.

America is using ISIS in three ways: to attack its enemies in the Middle East, to serve as a pretext for U.S. military intervention abroad, and at home to foment a manufactured domestic threat, used to justify the unprecedented expansion of invasive domestic surveillance.

By rapidly increasing both government secrecy and surveillance, Mr. Obama’s government is increasing its power to watch its citizens, while diminishing its citizens’ power to watch their government. Terrorism is an excuse to justify mass surveillance, in preparation for mass revolt.

****

In fact, more than seventy American companies and individuals have won up to $27 billion in contracts for work in postwar Iraq and Afghanistan over the last three years, according to a recent study by the Center for Public Integrity. According to the study, nearly 75 per cent of these private companies had employees or board members, who either served in, or had close ties to, the executive branch of the Republican and Democratic administrations, members of Congress, or the highest levels of the military.

In 1997, a U.S. Department of Defense report stated, “the data show a strong correlation between U.S. involvement abroad and an increase in terrorist attacks against the U.S.” Truth is, the only way America can win the “War On Terror” is if it stops giving terrorists the motivation and the resources to attack America. Terrorism is the symptom; American imperialism in the Middle East is the cancer. Put simply, the War on Terror is terrorism; only, it is conducted on a much larger scale by people with jets and missiles.

You’re welcome.

LIONEL PODCAST: Why Scotland Matters & The NFL Doesn’t

A ruling class need not be monolithic, however. In fact, most ruling classes are divided into two broad factions, which we may call the political class and the corporate class. The political class comprises those who are in direct control of running the state — politicians, civil servants, and the like; the corporate class, on the other hand, comprises the wealthy quasi-private beneficiaries of state power — the collectors of subsidies, government contracts, and grants of monopoly privilege. These two groups might be called the Bureaucrats and the Plutocrats.

“Can We Escape the Ruling Class?” by Roderick T. Long

I know. I know.  You never heard about this in history class. Talk like this destroys any semblance of faith that you enjoyed. True. This doesn’t comport with your history. Double true. But as Tolstoy said, history would be a wonderful thing if only it were true. Such is reality, impression and the news. Wonderful if only it were true. True if only it were wonderful.

And I’ll be in Scotland afore ye. Who cares about Alba, right? I care. I cared that maybe this would strike a blow against globalism and the subjugation of sovereignty through the barbed wire of the dread Union. Globalists yearn for the future EUs. Now, look. Lest you be confused. The UK ain’t the EU. Dig. But there’s something that’s completely inconsistent with and antithetical to freedom and that is consolidation and shared sovereignty. The notion of shared and concomitant partnership are wonderful, but that’s not what I’m speaking of in this world we live.

The NFL is brain scrambled toast. I’d have never imagined that the bastion of maleness would capitulate like a bunch of little sissy boys especially under the tutelage and stewarding of Roger Goodell. Why must the NFL have a policy on domestic violence and child abuse? Tell me what Whole Foods’ policy is. Or GM’s. What utter rubbish. And what’s feint the maelstrom is social media. Yet again.

And behold miscellany. The myriad. The mosaic. The plenary and assorted and sordid. Stream of unconsciousness. Enjoy.

LIONEL PODCAST: The Uncensored, Unedited and Unplugged Randy Credico Interview

Ineffable, inimitable, sui generis, nonpareil. But enough about me. Randy Credico is a personal hero of mine in so many ways and for so many reasons. And that’s an overused word I know. But his intrepid spirit and fearlessness are rare commodities in the United States of Torpor. The subject of an award-winning documentary entitled 60 Spins Around the Sun. Candidate for New York Governor. Comedian, activist and the former Director of the William Moses Kunstler Fund for Racial Justice. Impressionist of renown, historical savant, gadfly . . . you get the idea, I trust.

The recordation via telephony. I hit the record button and let it all hang out. It was glorious. Free form, freestyle, wide open and rip-roaring. It wove and swerved and slalomed and caromed. Stream of consciousness often unconsciousness perhaps. Plenary and replete with everything and anything. It was a delight. And if you know me, you know I don’t cachinnate and chortle often, not one to guffaw or kneeslap. Except for this interview and discussion with a truly amazing and fascinating man. While so many bitch and moan and complain, who among us are so motivated they run for office? Who spends long and arduous days campaigning to repeal draconian Rockefeller Drug Laws out of a sincere and deep concern over mistreatment? Randy Credico. He’s a brilliant man. In conversations he freely references historical precedent and anecdote. It’s not a schtick. Or a gimmick. He’s not just paying lip service. I admire commitment and conviction. I admire activism and involvement. Admit it, you do too.

Enjoy.

 

LIONEL PODCAST: You Can’t Be Syria!

It’s just an expression! Eat your heart out. Not exactly to be taken seriously. Don’t tell this feller. Here’s the July 2013 BBC account of Abu Sakkar, self-styled and admitted cardiophagist. This story can’t get any better, at least in terms of the never-ending and interminable list of horrors, horrible people and horrible behavior. And when you first heard of this — which I trust you did — you might have thought what crazy conspiracy rag did this come from? The BBC. Again, the BBC. Oh, and remember, this is a Syrian rebel commander. The feller’s our Prez pledge renewed fealty to. This is a moderate rebel. This is the FSA. But don’t feel bad if you can’t keep the names straight. IS, ISIS, ISIL, al-Nusra Front, FSA, al Qaeda — theyre all the same.

It sounded like the most far-fetched propaganda claim – a Syrian rebel commander who cut out the heart of a fallen enemy soldier, and ate it before a cheering crowd of his men.

The story turned out to be true in its most important aspect – a ritual demonstration of cannibalism – though when I met the commander, Abu Sakkar, in Syria last week, he seemed hazy on the details.

“I really don’t remember,” he says, when I ask if it was the man’s heart, as reported at the time, or liver, or a piece of lung, as a doctor who saw the video said. He goes on: “I didn’t bite into it. I just held it for show.”

The video says otherwise. It is one of the most gruesome to emerge from Syria’s civil war. In it, Abu Sakkar stands over an enemy corpse, slicing into the flesh.

“It looks like you’re carving him a Valentine’s heart,” says one of his men, raucously. Abu Sakkar picks up a bloody handful of something and declares: “We will eat your hearts and your livers you soldiers of Bashar the dog.”

Then he brings his hand up to his mouth and his lips close around whatever he is holding. At the time the video was released, in May, we rang him and he confirmed to us that he had indeed taken a ritual bite (of a piece of lung, he said).

So, in addition to the aforementioned supra, the latest goings-on anent and regarding Syria, the still very sad and unnecessary death of Joan Rivers, 9/11 revisited, myriad media obfuscations and distractions, historical revisionism as a parlor game, drug hypocrisy, sentient citizens seeking shelter and the President’s pathetic attempt at a speech shoring up support and determined conviction inter alia, please find this the latest addition to the ether that is podcast. Subscription podcast, that is. And check out my YouTube Channel. Go ahead. We’ll wait.

LIONEL PODCAST: 9-11 The National Day of Amnesia and Historical Revision

Hear! Hear! This podcast was recorded on the 10th and 11th and covers the following areas for your consideration and review. The first is the critical necessity – is there any other kind of necessity – of comprehending and being conversant with history and the parties involved. It’s axiomatic to note that history is critical. And might I remind you, as Mr. Tolstoy gave us, history would be a wonderful thing if only it were true.

That sounds familiar. Next, the return of the neocon and the Straussian acolyte. The Sons and Daughters of Leo. Often merged and conflated with your old-fashioned conservative and the like, the neocon is a different animal altogether. Note the catchphrases, the cide words. Watch for the PNAC signatories dusting off the pre-Saddam rhetoric. Am I Kristol clear?

Barry’s Big Adventure. Then, a review of POTUS O’s testament to lunacy in his address last eve as to ISIS – excuse me – ISIL and how he’s planning to rearm and finance the FSA who are in fact the alter ego of IS, ISIL, ISIS and al Qaeda. But as we’ll learn, show the American people a hooded, barbate, the suggestion of decapitation and beheading – even if the tape is replete with inconsistencies and stinks to high heaven of phony, contrived and artificial green screen CGI and chicanery – and Joe and Josephine Six Pack will slam their hamfists in a fit of barstool diplomacy screaming for the heads of whoever they are and denouncing whatever they want. Pass the beernuts.

That horrible time of year. And finally, a review of 9/11, its thirteenth anniversary and our annual celebration of collective national amnesia and nescience.

What’s in a name? Knowing the nomenclature and taxonomy of a political or ideological appellation is beyond critical and necessary. When speaking of ISIS or ISIL, you must know the differences between them and what they denote. What’s the Levant? (Not Oscar.) What’s Islamic versus Islamist versus Islamicist?

You put the lime in the coconut. Try this on for size. ISIS is the apparent successor to Tanzim Qaidat al-Jihad fi Bilad al-Rafidayn, which was later commonly known by academics, scholars and the like as al-Qaeda in Iraq (AQI). Don’t forget the al-Nusra Front, the FSA and our old favorite from the all of the above terror cabal, al Qaeda. Can you grasp the intensity and variation and complexity of being able to articulate the group you just call terrorists or bad guy? If you’re new to the game, it’s an understatement to say that knowing the players is critical. And in the first part of the podcast I speak of a lecture my wife and I attended by none other than James Woolsey, ex-CIA head spook and now, venture capitalist and neocon in residence. In his address he made references to Hayek, von Mises and Uncle Miltie Friedman. He referenced the Austrian School and dusted off the neocon platitudes and references that brought a tear to my eye.

Emphasis on “con.” Neocon? Wait. What’s that again? Neocon versus paleocon. Reagan versus Kristol? What’s the difference? I’ve many the friend who belches agitprop phraseology as they verbally diarrhea-spray on Facebook and Twitter every hoary and dusty phrase you can imagine. To them it’s all the same. Damn the Koch Brothers! Damn Citizens United! Damn Scalia! Bumpersticker platitudes and echo chamber drivel, plain and simple. Meaningless and trite shibboleths and shortcuts. Listen herein as I describe the Sons of Strauss and how these lapsed Troskeyites reconstituted into the hawk’s hawk today. Getting the nomenclature down pat isn’t just necessary, it’s actually fun.

Wait, aren’t the FSA actually ISIL? Last eve, your POTUS laid out a bill of particulars that redefined political and global lunacy. By reconstituting the Syrian rebels who are in fact ISIS – but note, her referred to them as ISIL, thus confusing you even more – he actually and with a straight face suggested that we refortify the very folks who as FSA sold arms that we provided to ISIS, er, ISIL, and now have merged and congealed into this newfound entity that the American people are merely referring to as terrorists, Islamists, jihadists or the plain old bad guys. It was the height of insanity and the media, yet again and per usual, scratched its arse as they went to commercial.

LIONEL PODCAST: My Interview With A Bona Fide Genius

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Cary Harrison is a genius. Not an exaggeration. Not hyperbole or a well-intended, polite compliment. No unwarranted magnification, puffery or grandiosity here. But there’s more. And he’s more.

He’s a raconteur, radio performer, TV host and American information treasure.

As Henry van Dyke said, “Genius is talent set on fire by courage.” And if you’re in this here alternative news and interpretation biz, you’d better have beaucoup courage and a pair of elephantine, gargantuan,  and Brobdingnagian bawls. All of which, he’s ably and sufficiently possessed.

Enjoy this. Two great friends looking and laughing at the world through the peculiar prism of unmitigated temerity and the aforementioned bawls.