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Newly Published! SWJ / El Centro ebook on Templarios cartel

Sunday, April 14th, 2019

[ by Charles Cameron — fresh off the interwebs! ]
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Los Caballeros Templarios de Michoacán: Imagery, Symbolism, and Narratives

About the context for El Centro / SWJ, our publishers:

The elephant in the hemispheric room is clearly the epidemic criminal, cartel and gang threat, fueled by a drug and migration economy, rising to the level of local and national criminal insurgencies and a significant U.S. national security risk.

My chapter, Templarios: Echoes of the Templars and Parallels Elsewhere, begins on p 102..

Enjoy!

Rich Pickings

Wednesday, April 10th, 2019

[ by Charles Cameron — my laptop keyboard is malfunctioning — my fault — but thanks to MS on-screen keyboard, I’m able to post here ]
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How’s this for a DoubleQuote?

I thought I was getting a wee bit tired of screen-grabs from items in my FB, Twitter and newsfeeds, but this one caught me by surprise — too good to miss!

**

And then there were others:

Alex Jones admitting to psychosis as the explanation for his — extremely profitable, until Twitter banned him this week — conspiracy theories, when his earlier excuse was that he was an entertainer, just kidding.. that too was striking and worth capture.

Firing squad was one of those five-star ***** instances that I’d want to include in any definitive collection of best war metaphors..

And a few more:

That last screen-grab, as you’d have learned from the sound-track, features three inset images for three black churches burned..

**

This one’s important:

Designating a state actor a terrorist organization goes against most definitions of terrorism, which apply the term to non-state actions only, thereby making the compilation of stats for all sorts of comparative purposes, an already difficult task, even more troublesome — for an excellent overview by the leading authority on terrorism definition, see Alex Schmid, The Revised Academic Consensus Definition of Terrorism

**

L’affaire Nielsen:

Neal Katyal, who wrote the Special Counsel rules:

Then there’s

President Trump:

Get rid of judges ..
Say.. say, Judge, I an’t do it ..

Then:

**

Hardball:

Chris Matthews:

He comes off as a football owner who keeps changing managers .. or coaches

Eating their own..

You start shooting at your allies because one of them is straying..

And:

**

All In:

You’re Fired!

Chris Hayes:

One big part of the reason that Donald Trump is our President is because a good number of people believe that the TV character Donald Trump was a real thing, thanks to the years he spent on national TV on our parent network of course, building up a reputation as a successful, self-made tough tycoon, not afraid to make the tough calls when the tough calls needed calling..

Most of us now know that the reality show Trump is not quite the reality we got. And as we saw yet again today, when it came time to deploy that famous tag-line, there seems to be some stage-fright ..

There has been so much turnover in just over two years of the Trump administration that the Washington Post was compelled to produce this graphic, which looks like a game of chutes, ladders, and people who will never get their reputations back:

It’s been 01 day since a high-profile departure from the Trump administration

And so forth..

m 55 Michelle Goldberg:The conventional language of American politics are just not up to describing ..

**

Rachel Maddow:

Quite a DoubleQuote, Rachel!

**

And from Velshi, 4/9/2019:

— a sequence on what Trump has offered at the altar of Netanyahu, to help with his election:

**

BTW, FB:

I think that does it.net

Halting Problem, P and NP to start with.. chyrons &c 33

Wednesday, April 3rd, 2019

{ by Charles Cameron — including off and on security clearances, Biden and personal space, Trump and groping, kissing, Sovereign Citizens, a billion dollar swindle, and a cruise named Conspira-Sea — and on and on ]
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So, Fox had a chyron gaffe —

— it’s worth a chuckle — now move along..

**

Okay here’s enantiodromia:

Trump will put $100 billion into a slush fund so he doesn’t have to deal with budget cuts:

Republicans have spent a generation complaining about deficits, government spending and attacking a so-called “big government.” Yet, within just a few years the entire party has turned 180 degrees.

and a nice paradox:

If P gets things right then it lies in its tooth;
and if it speaks falsely, it’s telling the truth!

Where did I get that?

  • Geoffrey K. Pullum, an elementary proof of the undecidability of the halting problem
  • If it was Dr Seuss, I’m betting he’d have employed and enjoyed pee (male) and queue (female), which would have made youthful readers giggle and blush.

    That’s Epimenides territory btw, as in “all Cretans are liars”.

    **

    Getting back to news chyrons — I wasn’t awake to catch this when it showed up on Morning Joe, but a piece on RawStory pointed me to it:

    Joe Scarborough:

    Once again, we’re just looking through a glass darkly, and have no idea what Mueller

    Tom Nichols (professor, Naval War College):

    I would love to play poker with the president because he’s a walking bundle of tells.

    **

    CNN Situation Room 4/1/2019:

    Donald Trump: We’ll keep it closed for a long time. I’m not playing games.
    Kellyanne Conway: It is certainly not a bluff.

    **

    MTP 4/1/2019:

    Jeh Johnson:

    You don’t have to the the former Secretary of Homeland Security to know you can’t shut down a 1,900 mile border. It’s a little like decreeing that it should stop raining..

    [ cf King Knut ]

    [all of them Mexico?]

    Jeh Johnson:

    Cutting off aid is the exact wrong thing to do ..

    Note the lovely symmetry there, equivalent to projection

    **

    Ari Melber:

    Neil Katyal:

    You can’t be playing Ducks and Drakes and releasing selectively some quotes here and some quotes there..

    Is, incidentally, I’m thinking sports metaphors, whistle-blower a sports reference, referee?

    **

    Hardball:

    Rep Steve Cohen:

    This whole thing has been played out like a stall. Like when they used to play basketball without a 32 second, 30 second, 35 secondclock, a 35 second clock and they’re just holding the ball, and they’ve got the lead, they’ve got the lead and they’re holding the ball.

    Chris Matthews:

    That’s Dean Smith’s four corners offense, I know about it. Thanks for the basketball recap. .. This isn’t basketball at all, but there is a question of game-playing here ..*****

    This was re Barr timing the release of the Mueller report (after his redactions) to April 15, when Congress wld be away from town on a 3 week break..

    CM:

    A picture’s worth a thousand words everybody. Natasha, you take this: if we get a New York Times top of the fold picture >of a whole page blacked out .. There isn’t going to be much white left on that page ..

    Natasha Bertrand:

    Is Donald Trump considered a third party because he wasn’t charged?

    I just want to go back really quickly to the question of whether ethics and morals matter. If you’re a morally vacuous person, that makes you more susceptible to beinf blackmailed by a foreign country .. It’s a very big national security issue, and I think that that is the lens through which we have to view this ..

    Jay Inslee:

    Trump has been so inhumane to close the border to refugees, some of whom are climate refugees today, because of the drought..

    First mention I’ve seen of climate refugees***** as a term — cf my poem Mourning the lost Ka’aba

    **

    All In:

    Lachlan Markay:

    A state-sponsored Saudi information warfare apparatus ..

    a full spectrum of information warfare, essentially, against Jeff Bezos, the Washington Post and Amazon ..

    Chris Hayes:

    If it’s true, it’s as real and immediate a threat to free speech in the US as one can possinbbly imagine, if a foreign government that doesn’t like dissidents speaking out of turn so much that it murders themessentially attempts to blackmail and destroythe paper which covers is.

    LM:

    And not just the First Amendment, but we have to remember that Amazon right now is bidding on a ten billion dollar Pentagon cloud storage contract, here as well ..om there are tremendous national security implications

    Ah, and golf:

    There’s even a book about it —

    — a book-length sports metaphor***** for the current presidency?

    Author Rick Reilly describes the President as a “prolific cheater” ..

    **

    Andrea:

    **

    Okay.

    Two major pieces on forms of the extreme associated with the right:

    How Sovereign Citizens Helped Swindle $1 Billion From the Government They Disavow

    And from that article, an aptly named car:

    Mr. Morton’s sentencing was set for that June. But when the 11 a.m. hearing started, he didn’t show. Agents spotted him that afternoon outside a Domino’s in Hermosa Beach, a gray hood and sunglasses shrouding much of his face. He hopped in his white Ford Escape and headed south.

    and an aptly named cruise:

    Worth reading, and really worth knowing about the loosely-defined, quasi-religious Sovereign Citizens movement.

    Also:

    There are two forms of interest here — the vicious circle, a quintessential ouroboric concept, and the implied symmetry in “jihadists and the far-right not only reflect each other, but feed off each other”..

    But the CSM piece I really want to direct your attention to is one written by blog-friend Ann Scott Tyson and quoting blog-friend JM Berger– — who was also quoted in the NYT SovCit piece above:

    Christchurch brings global white supremacist threat into sharp relief

    “This is a much bigger global challenge than it is a challenge just in New Zealand or just in the U.K., with Britain First, or just in the U.S. with the [Ku Klux] Klan and a range of other neo-Nazi and white supremacist groups,” says Seth Jones, director of the Transnational Threats Project at the Center for Strategic and International Studies. “There’s a broader collective concern here.”

    **

    This just in before I go.. another symmetry observed:

    The cruel irony of Hussle’s murder is that he was the victim of the type of urban violence he had long tried to remedy: The day after his death, he was scheduled to participate in an LAPD anti-street-violence meeting.

    32, let’s begin with Her Majesty’s hat

    Sunday, March 31st, 2019

    [ by Charles Cameron — hat and flag, insecurity clearances, quantum physics and what it tells us about truth and spin, paris, city of lovers, sex, scandal naturellement, and would you believe it, treason? ]
    .

    Brexit. Her Majesty’s hat draws a clear parallel, but is it a metaphor?

    That was the hat HM wore for the 2017 Queen’s Speech to the joint Houses of Parliament — and we have no reason to suppose her opinion has changed since then. Visual DoubleQuote courtesy of Federica Cocco

    And then…

    I mean, what a nightmare…

    **

    But then, you can’t always trust the facts:

    I mean, news these daze:

    Spin corresponds to fact, like the hands of a stopped clock, twice a day.. (thanks, Wolfram)

    Here’s some detail from the Ars Technical piece:

    You, however, are in a box and cannot report your measurements to me. Instead, I have to measure your state to discover the result of your measurement.

    So what we have here, if I might say so, is a case of Matryoshka measurements..

    That means you are in a superposition state of having measured a vertical or horizontal photon, even after you have made the measurement. I can measure your state, and we end up with two sensible outcomes: you measure horizontal, and I measure you to have measured horizontal; you measure vertical and I measure you to have measured vertical.

    But there are two more possibilities: you measure horizontal, but I measure you to have measured vertical, and you measure vertical, but I measure you to have measured horizontal. If the second measurement is governed by quantum mechanics, those two are just as likely to occur as the sensible outcomes. So half the time, the measurement result you obtain contradicts my measurement of your measurement.

    Got it?

    If not read, the whole article, then read it again. Frown. You’ll get it.

    There is nothing wrong with either measurement, and there is no calculation that we can perform to resolve the contradiction.**

    **

    Reading an account of the Al Franken affair, focused on the questions of piling on (scapegoating?)nand equal justice for accuser and accused — two sports metaphors:

    Fellow Democratic senators quickly entered the scrum as they fought to be next in line to proclaim outrage and demand he should go.

    One of the most disturbing aspects of #MeToo is that watching someone get destroyed in real time has become something of a sport.

    In the course of reading in and around that article, I ran across this brilliant visual DoubleQuoting of the Christine Blasey Ford / Brett Kavanaugh matter:

    On such balance we may project each our suppositions: but to have achieved such balance!

    **
    And so to my dialysis viewing:

    Hardball, 3/29/2019:

    Julia Ainsley:

    He [Barr] doesn’t have blinders on, he knows the public criticism here..

    David Corn:

    It doesn’t look like he’s playing Even Stephen here..

    Zerlina Maxwell [on Barr making decisions ahead of release of Mueller report]: I look at this situation almost like the track and field runner that’s running down the hoe stretch, and they put their arms over their head, and then they’re crossed at the finish line..

    .. this feels like a premature victory lap

    Chris M:Well, David, Zerlina caught me .. with that visual of the President of the United States, this particular one, running a hundred yard dash. I don’t think that would be his event. I think riding a golf cart would be his event.

    .. that must be the sound of a bus going over you ..


    Chris M [ourob]:

    How can a white person [ie Hillary Clinton] bea racist agfainst white people?

    [ but cf “self-hating Jews”]

    With anyb luck, I’ll get access to a complete Hardball video for 3/29/2019 and be able to find the chyrons “DeVos grilled’ (42); Trump “overriding” (43); and “Trump questioned” (50)

    I have a note, “that’s the inverse of what’s true” which is a superb example of reverse (pos-neg) symmetry, cf the spy vs spy image in a recent post).. There was also a ref to David Ignatius, How the mysteries of Khashoggi’s murder have rocked the U.S.-Saudi partnership

    **

    Then there was the Green New Deal, with Chris Hayes:

    Seb Gorka: They want to take away your hamburgers. This is what Stalin dreamed of and never achieved.

    AOC: I expected a little more nuance..

    It’s surreal ..

    No more disposable people, no more disposable places ..

    Ref:

    A Green New Deal Is Technologically Possible. Its Political Prospects Are Another Question.

    **

    Rachel Maddow 3/29/3019:

    Rachel re Barr:

    It was kind of him free-styling, this was him showing off his dance moves ..

    Now, tonight, it appears there’s a little bit of panic in the disco, because now William Barr has released yet another unexpected, taken it upon himself, ad lib, figuring it out as he goes along letter ..

    **

    Let’s close with this stunning image by Stephane De Sakutin / AFP / Getty:

    A mold of the Genie de la Patrie damaged during a “yellow vest” protest at the Arc de Triomphe in December is seen during its renovation by the French restorer Agnes Le Boudec in Paris on March 25, 2019.

    And another next, 26, mixed

    Friday, March 22nd, 2019

    [ by Charles Cameron — running the gamut from Mike Pompeo a flailing, failing theologian, to ISIS, not that their theology is so great, ahem, but still around, with cat-herding visible unto the days of the grandkids ]
    .

    Credo quia absurdum? Or, getting the original quote right, credibile est, quia ineptum est? That’s no inept as to be believable?

    There’s actually a passage in Cicero’s Rhetoric for Herrennius that describes how to make objects of contemplation more memorable by choosing the most beautiful or ugly images as analogs / analogies to represent them:

    We ought, then, to set up images of a kind that can adhere longest in memory. And we shall do so if we establish similitudes as striking as possible; if we set up images that are not many or vague but active; if we assign to them exceptional beauty or singular ugliness; if we ornament some of them, as with crowns or purple cloaks, so that the similitude may be more distinct to us; or if we somehow disfigure them, as by introducing one stained with blood or soiled with mud and smeared with red paint, so that its form is more striking, or by assigning certain comic effects to our images, for that, too, will ensure our remembering them more readily.

    It may be that Tertullian — the Church Father who authored that phrase about believing something because it’s so incredible — was not so far in his thinking from Cicero — was accustomed to at least the concept of using the strangest, most strained analogies, and applied it to his contemplation of the unspeakable, unimaginable Godhead, since such disfigured analogies are both the most memorable and the least likely to be taken literally, and thus mistaken for the Reality to which they are intended to point.. but that’s pure speculation on my part.

    But I’m sorry, No. Mike Pompeo may have been first in his class at Annapolis, and I may have been far from first in my class at Oxford, but at least my studies were in Theology — and No.

    **

    Here’s one for the liminal collection:

    An island, you know, is something else. In a continent, the watersheds are important natural divisions, as are linguistic groupings and cultures. There’s arguably a cultural component of Brit-oriented Northern Irish, and they’re not enemy — but the naturalness of a united island Ireland seems pretty clear.

    Islands:

    History has time and again highlighted the importance of islands in establishing naval dominance.

    That’s from Darshana Baruah, SISTER ISLANDS IN THE INDIAN OCEAN REGION: LINKING THE ANDAMAN AND NICOBAR ISLANDS TO LA RÉUNION

    Through a ring of bases and naval presence on islands, the British essentially controlled the entry points into this crucial area. In the east it had Singapore and the Andaman and Nicobar Islands, while Socotra and the port city of Aden provided access to the Red Sea and Bab-el Mandeb. With control of Sri Lanka, Maldives, Mauritius, the Seychelles and, briefly, Madagascar, the empire turned the Indian Ocean into a “British Lake.” To consolidate its presence along the coast of Africa, the British Empire fought bloody wars to take control of Kenya, Uganda, and the island of Zanzibar. With these islands and coastal territories, the empire projected its power across the region and dominated the key chokepoints and shipping lines between Asia, Africa, and Europe.

    Bloody, note the bloody. And dominance, note the British dominance. I’m not sure that bloody dominance is quite so well-supported any more, but a little less Biriths dominance and Ireland might be a little less bloody.

    **

    Dan Nexon recommends a paper featuring an arc — yes, we’re collecting arcs — but not the MLK moral arc that may be long, but in the end “bends toward justice”..

    **

    JM Berger has been interviewed by Terry Gross — to be aired on Monday:

    Stay tuned!

    **

    All In, Chris Hayes:

    Unh.

    They’re [WH] basically blowing off a co-equal branch of government which gives a strong indication of how they plan to back-rush their way through anything damning from the Mueller report, when it comes.

    In fact, there is such a swarm of criminality, prosecutions and pleas around the President and his ever-moving dynamic vortex..

    A trial run, a warm-up inning..

    Y’know, Mueller report ridiculous, but I want to see it is vaguely reminiscent of credo quia absurdum, or th more accurate quote in my own translation, see above:

    That’s no inept as to be believable

    **

    I can’t find the Jon Meacham quote on ceremonial trolling, so here’s one from India:

    Rohit is to this series what trial ball is to gully cricket

    Twitter went ahead with its ceremonial trolling of Rohit soon after he was dismissed. It’s become a routine of late for the right-hander to perish cheaply and be the butt of jokes on social media.

    At least it’s a fun replacement, though for seriosity I’d have preferred the Meacham.

    **

    and btw:

    **

    D’oh.

    **

    Clint Watts @selectedwisdom:

    I really would like everyone to read that story ..

    The whole idea is, everybody around the world knows that you can hire companies to crack into any one of these endpoints —

    — and go through any of these communications ..

    If you want to feel your communications are safe, don’t worry about government surveillance, worry about corporate guys-for-hire that are hired by all these companies ..

    Here’s the article:

    A New Age of Warfare: How Internet Mercenaries Do Battle for Authoritarian Governments

    BTW another Clint quote from my day’s scan:

    If we were to go after Wikileaks, it could lead to massive information dumps of US secrets around the world ..

    In have the feeling I quoted an abbreviated version a while back, without that crucial “of US secrets” — good to have thee full version, in any case.

    **

    Sigh:

    Charles Lister, Trump Says ISIS Is Defeated. Reality Says Otherwise.

    The ISIS of the future could be just as bad if not bigger and worse than the one we watched dramatically expand in 2014. In Iraq, nearly 20,000 ISIS detainees currently lie in prison and tens of thousands more who are accused of having maintained ties to ISIS lie in squalid camps surrounded by hostile security forces. A further 20,000 Iraqi ISIS prisoners and family members currently in Syria look set to be transferred back to Iraq in the coming weeks, all of whom will surely meet a similar fate: prison or secured camps. If that were not bad enough news, tens of thousands of Iraqi children born under ISIS rule look set to remain stateless due to Baghdad’s continued refusal to recognize their ISIS-produced birth certificates or to produce Iraqi replacements. All told, that may amount to at least 100,000 people in Iraq with ties to ISIS whose bleak futures will undoubtedly fuel long-term radicalization.

    Enough.


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