Friday, October 19, 2012

force majeure

Our conversation with William Blair of Infraspect

"Humanity is too clever to survive without wisdom."

— E.F Schumacher

"Power concedes nothing without a demand.  It never did and it never will.  Find out just what any people will quietly submit to and you have the exact measure of the injustice and wrong which will be imposed on them, and these will continue till they have been resisted with either words or blows, or with both.  The limits of tyrants are prescribed by the [tolerance] of those whom they suppress."

--Frederick Douglass

“Where ignorance is our master, there is no possibility of real peace.”

—Dalai Lama

“Curiosity is the wick in the candle of learning.”

—William Arthur Ward

force majeure


    Superior or overpowering force
    An unexpected or uncontrollable event

[French: force, force + majeure, greater.]

A French term literally translated as "greater force", this clause is included in contracts to remove liability for natural and unavoidable catastrophes that interrupt the expected course of events and restrict participants from fulfilling obligations.

Investopedia Says:

This clause is meant to benefit both parties in a contract. Force majeure would come into play, for example, when you buy a house. If the house is destroyed in a fire caused by a lightning strike, neither party remains obligated.

An unavoidable cause of delay or of failure to perform a contract obligation in time

Example: A force majeure clause is often inserted in a construction contract to protect the contractor from delays due to weather, labor disputes, and other unavoidable incidents.


An early Jewish interpretation of or commentary on a Biblical text, clarifying or expounding a point of law or developing or illustrating a moral principle

A collection of such interpretations or commentaries, especially those written in the first ten centuries a.d.
— n, plural midrashim

  A homily on a scriptural passage derived by traditional Jewish exegetical methods and consisting usually of embellishment of the scriptural narrative

     One of a number of collections of such homilies composed between 400 and 1200 ad

[C17: from Hebrew: commentary, from darash to search]


— adj



    Unselfish concern for the welfare of others; selflessness

    Zoology. Instinctive behavior that is detrimental to the individual but favors the survival or spread of that individual's genes, as by benefiting its relatives.

Oxford Dictionary of Politics

Benefiting other persons or interest-bearers. The common contrast with selfishness reveals some variations in the understanding of altruism, which may refer to a disposition, to an intention, or to behaviour. Hence an altruistic person might intend to benefit others, but fail to do so when executing that intention. Altruism is sometimes understood as giving more consideration to others than oneself, and sometimes as giving equal consideration to oneself and others. Since there are commonly more ‘others’ than the decision-maker, the distinction usually lacks practical importance, but it may be significant in two-person cases. In discussions informed by game theory, a contrast is drawn between reciprocal altruism and universal altruism. Reciprocal altruists display that behaviour towards those from whom they have received it, or from whom they expect to receive it. Universal altruism, often seen as the central ethical prescription of Christianity, is unconditional. In sociobiological applications, it can be shown that the survival chances of individuals and groups depend not only on the incidence of selfishness and altruism, but also on the type of altruism in question.

— Andrew Reeve

Encyclopedia of Judaism

Concern for or devotion to the interests of others as a matter of principle. In rabbinic terms, an altruist is one who performs a good deed or fulfills a precept disinterestedly or le-shem shamayim---"for the sake of heaven." Whether a person is attending to his own needs or to those of the community, he should not concentrate on personal gain, achieving power, or self-glorification. Similarly, one who occupies himself with Torah "for its own sake" (li-shemah) demonstrates his love for God and mankind, and is said to "gladden" both (Avot 6:1). According to the rabbis, motivation is all-important: the study of Torah "for its own sake" (i.e., for unselfish purposes) constitutes an elixir of life; when studied for ulterior motives, however, it acts as a deadly poison (Ta'an. 7a). Yet, in the words of the Talmud, "man should always occupy himself with Torah study and observance of the precepts, for even if he does not do so altruistically at first, he will do so by persevering in the end." Additional light was shed on this thought by Maimonides: even while mindful of the reward or punishment that his behavior will incur, a man acquires understanding and in the end he will serve God and man purely out of love. From Second Temple times onward, the self-denial and generosity awakened by considerations of le-shem shamayim led to self-sacrificing acts "for the glory of God" (see Kiddush Ha-Shem).

Oxford Dictionary of Philosophy

Term coined by Comte for the disinterested concern for the welfare of another, as an end in itself. Questions include the reality of altruism (see egoism), and its value. While altruism is frequently thought to be a cornerstone of Christian ethics, as a category it is unknown in Greek thought. It was energetically attacked by Nietzsche as entailing an unhealthy suppression or devaluation of the self, although in fact there is no evidence that altruistic personalities in general have particularly low self-esteem. In evolutionary theory behaviour is defined as altruistic only if it decreases the fitness of the animal, and there is the corresponding question of how such behaviour could exist and sustain itself.

Claude Henri de Rouvroy, comte de Saint-Simon

Auguste Comte

Paul Kurtz

Tikkun Olam


Audio-video tutorials

Our World is Changing: Looking Beyond 'the 2012'

The Post Sustainability Institute


Communitarianism is the 'balancing of the individual's rights against those of the community.'  In the US Constitution we are guaranteed rights that we were born with: life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness.  That last one, as you know, was to be 'property.'  Property is not just land.  YOU are your own property.  That was an element of fundamental freedom in the original draft of the Declaration of Independence.

So how can you 'balance' those rights with those of the community?  The community has no rights under the US Constitution.  Individuals have rights and responsibilities, but the community as a whole, what is that?  The collective?  Whenever you 'balance' or subsume, or subordinate, or consensus-ize the individuals' rights you'll get something different from what we are guaranteed under the Constitution. 
Here's an example.

Let's take two glasses and set them on a table. 
One glass is full of water. Let's call it a Republic.
The other glass is full of milk. Let's call it a Communitarian state.

Now we'll get a glass pitcher and set it on the table.

Let's balance the water with the milk by pouring them both into the pitcher.

What do you have?
It's not water anymore, is it?
It's milk.  Watery milk.  But milk.  Not water.

The Third Way.

Communitarianism.  Balancing your individual rights with the 'rights' of the community.  This is being pitched to you as the new enlightened form of political discourse.  You are 'selfish' if you insist on your individual rights and freedoms.  This is the justification for Agenda 21-Sustainable Development.  For the good of the planet.  For everyone's security.  For your health.  To protect your children.  To limit workplace violence. To stop bullying.

All of these things are laudable, but somehow they always result in more restrictive laws that affect everyone. They criminalize everyone.  In many towns the Civil Code has been criminalized.  What does that mean?  If you don't mow your lawn it's a misdemeanor.

Will your child have a criminal record if he calls another kid a 'queer?'  Will you be held responsible if your employee shoots someone and you knew he was upset over a breakup with his wife?  Will your 15 year old daughter be strip-searched at the airport?  Will you lose custody of your 10 year old because he is obese? 

Will you be evicted from your apartment because you smoked on your balcony in violation of a local ordinance?  Will you be taxed for driving 15 miles to work instead of riding your bike?  Will you be fined for watering your vegetable garden?  Will your Smart Meter be used to tell advertisers what to sell you?  Will your Smart vehicle with remote shut off capability be shut down by someone in your state capitol while you're driving?  Will your neighbor report you to the Community Oriented Policing Unit of your local police department because you seemed to be acting strangely?  Will you be denied the right to use the water in your well?  Will you be required to pay triple your original electricity rates because your town has decided to go into the power business (Community Aggregate Power Generation)?  Will you be required to donate acres of your ranchland for county open space before you can put a house on it?  Will you pay years of property tax without receiving any services for it because Redevelopment debt has crippled your city?  Will you be required to do your mandatory volunteering before you can get your child into Little League? Will you be accused of not caring about the planet if you question Sustainable Development?

Your rights have been balanced.

Activist Post

Scientists: Creativity Part of ‘Mental Illness’

By Anthony Gucciardi

The New World Order is Dead On Arrival

Thoughts At Perhaps The Most Perilous Time In World History

By Stephen Lendman


How Darwin, Huxley, Terence McKenna, Dr. Tim Leary, Dr. Ted Kaczynski, (the Unabomber), Jose Arguelles, Daniel Pinchbeck, and the Esalen Institute launched the 2012 and psychedelic revolutions – and began one of the largest mind control operations in history.

Association for Psychological Science

The Science of Distraction Revealed

The Population Control Agenda Of The Radical Humanists Who Would Love For You And I To Die

The Common Sense Show

The Amerikan Blueprint for Enslavement and Eventual Extermination

 By Dave Hodges





Food scarcity: the timebomb setting nation against nation

As the UN and Oxfam warn of the dangers ahead, expert analyst Lester Brown says time to solve the problem is running out

LEFT HOOK by Dean Henderson

The Illuminati Depopulation Agenda

(Excerpted from Chapter 13: USS Persian Gulf: Big Oil & Their Bankers…)

By Dean Henderson

All-Time Darwin Award: The Nuclear Industry

Activist Post

The One Most Important Question Survivalists Can Ask Themselves: Why Are You Trying to Survive?

By Dan and Sheila Gendron

Dan & Sheila are the authors of Surviving Survivalism – How to Avoid Survivalism Culture Shock, and hosts of the podcast, Still Surviving with Dan & Sheila. For questions about space in their Intentional Survivalist Community or other survivalist issues, they can be reached at

PPJ Gazette

Urban Survival: Prepare, Survive and Thrive in these dangerous times!

Join Yoda and Marti Friday & Saturday evening October 19th & 20th, 2012 for this important series!


Yoda is the pen name of a seasoned counter-terrorist team leader who works with US and allied Intelligence and law enforcement agencies.    
Listeners will acquire peace of mind, learning how to plan and prepare actionable tactics, methods and strategies for natural and man-made disasters in their homes, workplaces and on the road.

Activist Post

Seeds of Freedom

The story of seed has become one of loss, control, dependence and debt. It’s been written by those who want to make vast profit from our food system, no matter what the true cost.  It’s time to change the story.
Seeds of Freedom charts the story of seed from its roots at the heart of traditional, diversity rich farming systems across the world, to being transformed into a powerful commodity, used to monopolise the global food system. The film highlights the extent to which the industrial agricultural system, and genetically modified (GM) seeds in particular, has impacted on the enormous agro -biodiversity evolved by farmers and communities around the world, since the beginning of agriculture.

Seeds Of

Seeds of Freedom seeks to challenge the mantra that large-scale, industrial agriculture is the only means by which we can feed the world, promoted by the pro-GM lobby. In tracking the story of seed it becomes clear how corporate agenda has driven the takeover of seed in order to make vast profit and control of the food global system.

Through interviews with leading international experts such as Dr Vandana Shiva and  Henk Hobbelink, and through the voices of a number of African farmers, the film highlights how the loss of indigenous seed goes hand in hand with loss of biodiversity and related knowledge; the loss of cultural traditions and practices; the loss of livelihoods; and the loss of food sovereignty.  The pressure is growing to replace the diverse, nutritional, locally adapted and resilient seed crops which have been bred by small-scale farmers for millennia, by monocultures of GM seed.

Alongside speakers from indigenous farming communities, the film features global experts and activists Dr Vandana Shiva of Navdanya, Henk Hobbelink of GRAIN, Zac Goldsmith MP (UK Conservative party), Canadian farmer Percy Schmeiser, Kumi Naidoo of Greenpeace International, Gathuru Mburu of the African Biodiversity Network, Liz Hosken of The Gaia Foundation and Caroline Lucas MP (UK Green party).
This film is co-produced by  The Gaia Foundation and the African Biodiversity Network. In collaboration with GRAIN, Navdanya International and MELCA Ethiopia .

Scientists to simulate human brain inside a supercomputer

German cabinet approves bill allowing circumcision of boys

Are our political abstractions killing us?

Breaking The Zombie Programming: We Can Become Conscious!

Leaked Debate Agreement Shows Both Obama and Romney are Sniveling Cowards

Who is Barack Obama Really? An Examination of Obama’s Domestic Policies

Darryl Bradford Smith Interviews John Kaminski

How To Carve Up The World

Syria, Turkey, Israel and a Greater Middle East Energy War

 By F. William Engdahl 

10 October 2012


The Election, the Presidency and Foreign Policy

By George Friedman

The American presidency is designed to disappoint. Each candidate must promise things that are beyond his power to deliver. No candidate could expect to be elected by emphasizing how little power the office actually has and how voters should therefore expect little from him. So candidates promise great, transformative programs. What the winner actually can deliver depends upon what other institutions, nations and reality will allow him. Though the gap between promises and realities destroys immodest candidates, from the founding fathers' point of view, it protects the republic. They distrusted government in general and the office of the president in particular.

Congress, the Supreme Court and the Federal Reserve Board all circumscribe the president's power over domestic life. This and the authority of the states greatly limit the president's power, just as the country's founders intended. To achieve anything substantial, the president must create a coalition of political interests to shape decision-making in other branches of the government. Yet at the same time -- and this is the main paradox of American political culture -- the presidency is seen as a decisive institution and the person holding that office is seen as being of overriding importance.

romney exposed

Ron Paul and Ben Bernanke Debate the Audit the Fed Bill

Daily Paul

Bombshell: Rod Class gets FOURTH Administrative Ruling "Gov't Offices are Vacant"- All Gov't Officials are "Private Contractors"

Global Research

Fraudulent Educational Reform in America

What goes on in America’s schools is essentially identical to what goes on in the Madrassas of the Muslim world. In both, orthodox beliefs are taught as truth and critical examination is discouraged. Two worlds clash in loggerheads.

In the 1960s, I came across a little book entitled Master Teachers and the Art of Teaching. This unpretentious little book, written by John E. Colman of St. John’s University, not only enlightened me as a young university professor but proved to be invaluable. In it, about a dozen different teaching methods are described along with some information about the master teachers who designed them. Each of these methods was used successfully to teach some subjects to some students. None was used successfully to teach all subjects to all students. Throughout my teaching career, I found opportunities to utilize many of these methods when the right situations arose. The lesson I learned from this little book is that there is no one teaching method that works for teaching all subjects to all students. Finding the right method for the students at hand is at best an art, never a science, and is never easy.

Few people understand this. In fact, teacher training suppresses it. Teaching methods are taught to prospective teachers as fixed, reliable procedures that never fail when in reality, they rarely succeed. And although carried out in numerous variations, the predominant way of teaching in America’s schools at all levels has been the teacher’s lecture and the student’s need to memorize it. Today the lecture is often presented in various ways. The student listens to a teacher speak, or reads a teacher’s words in a textbook, or watches a televised presentation or a computerized video. And students are asked to memorize some portion of the presented material. Furthermore, the memorization of presented material is the most boring way of teaching anyone anything. No one likes having to memorize stuff. Some teachers, like orators, are better at lecturing than others which leads many to conclude that the quality of the presentation is what really matters and that that quality depends on the teacher’s talent. But it doesn’t. Teaching is neither a necessary nor a sufficient condition for learning. Human beings had been teaching themselves and others for millennia before what we know as a “teacher” ever existed.

The history of education in America makes this transparently clear. Even the Puritans had ways of teaching their children, but the first normal school, a school to train students to be teachers, didn’t come into being until 1839, less than two centuries ago. It resulted in building a school system modeled on an industrial, manufacturing model that still controls thinking about education today. Unfortunately it was faulty then and still is today.

Using this model, our schools are thought of as factories, the teachers are thought of as factory workers, and students are thought of as raw material. Each student enters the school system as a tabula rasa and exits as a book engraved with “knowledge.” The engraver, of course, is the teacher who is responsible for what is written on the tabulae. The system is devoted to mass producing educated people, and even anecdotal observations of people clearly demonstrate that it has never worked. Had it worked, everyone who attended school would have been equally educated, just like the buttons produced in a button factory are all alike. Two and a half centuries of graduate counterexamples absolutely refute the theory.

But so does the experience of most students. It is the rare graduate of any school on any level who can’t name a teacher s/he considers exceptionally good. Yet even those teachers never taught every student in their classes equally well. Some learned a lot, some learned less, and perhaps some learned nothing. No teacher can be responsible for such disparate results. Something other than the teacher’s ability must be accountable for them, because each student in each class was subjected to the same presentations. Mill’s method of difference must be used to identify the other, but no reformer is attempting to use it. Blaming the teacher is so much easier, and putting the blame there proves that the improvement of education is not the aim of reformers.

Even though we routinely ask children what they would like to be when they grow up, except in trivial ways, our schools rarely make attaining their goals possible, because the system is designed to make products not educated human beings. Prospective college students are always being told, even by the President, to study subjects that the commercial community needs to carry out its enterprises. Lindsay Oldenski, Assistant Professor, School of Foreign Service, Georgetown University, writes that the need is to match graduates to the areas where labour demand is growing. Students are not told to study the subjects needed to become what they want to be because unless the commercial community wants people who want to be what they want to be, this society has no place for them in it, which proves that this society does not exist for people, but that people exist to fulfill the purposes of the commercial community.

The President says more scientists are needed. No one asks him why? No one points out that we don’t pay any attention to those we already have. Why are more scientists who are not going to be paid attention to needed? What the commercial community wants is not scientists, but scientists who fulfill the commercial community’s needs. So the schools need not produce environmentalists or climatologists or anthropologists.
What schools need to produce are scientists like Wernher Magnus Maximilian Freiherr von Braun who was quite content to use slave labor to produce weapons of mass murder. Our commercial community needs scientists like that and apparently quite enough of them are being produced. The educational system exists to produce factory fodder, and educational reformers are concerned not with improving education but with producing factory fodder better. But it won’t work! CNN recently released a list of the 16 colleges in the country that produce the highest paid graduates. Princeton University was first on the list; yet only 49% of its graduates considered their jobs to be meaningful. Training for work is not education for living, not even when highly paid. The average rate of meaningful work for the 16 colleges is a mere 51%. Can you approximate the average for all workers, especially the lowest paid? What does this say about the quality of life Americans enjoy?

Our reformers’ love affair with technology has also shown itself to be ineffective. American love for science and technology is grounded in religious-like faith, not reality. This love produces a deeply held belief that science and technology will solve all problems. That it may not is never even considered, so reformers go from one technology to another in an endless search for the holy grail of learning. Television was introduced into college classrooms in the early 1960s. It enabled one professor to “teach” hundreds of students, but they never learned very much. A decade later, computers were introduced into the public schools. A lot of computers were bought; little increase in learning was observed. Now the classroom is being shifted to the Internet.

But test scores keep dropping. Despite decades of reforms and billions of dollars spent the American education system badly needs improvement; yet no relevant improvement is even in sight. “Most of the nation’s 2012 high school graduates aren’t ready for college, and their reading skills continue to steadily decline, hitting their lowest level in four decades, new data show.” In fact, piles of evidence reveal that Americans are getting dumber. People who have graduated from high school since the pocket calculator was invented can’t calculate in their heads, not even simple addition, subtraction, and multiplication. Many people addicted to the Internet have difficulty reading anything more complicated than a tweet, and the technical constraints imposed by the internet are making it impossible to teach spelling and the nuances of grammar. What can seriously be written about in 140 characters? Articles become mere headlines and headlines become mere soundbites.

America is, and always has been, an anti-intellectual society. It is a conservative nation with deeply held conservative views. This conservatism stems from its widespread fundamentalist religious values. Numerous progressive attempts to change this have failed and are failing again. When the Republican Party of Texas recently approved its 1912 Platform, it included the following paragraph:

Knowledge-Based Education

We oppose the teaching of Higher Order Thinking Skills (HOTS) (values clarification), critical thinking skills and similar programs that are simply a relabeling of Outcome-Based Education (OBE) (mastery learning) which focus on behavior modification and have the purpose of challenging the student’s fixed beliefs and undermining parental authority.

And the Alabama Legislature considered a bill to stop the teaching of evolution as a fact. That even a part of America’s governing elite tries to enact such reactionary views into law means that they are attempting to make improving the American schools impossible. The American elite does not want anyone to improve the American schools. America’s schools will never be reformed because the culture impedes it. The reform movements are not about education. They, like everything else in America, are about money. Both the American political and economic systems rely on a thoughtless, unintelligent, uneducated populous. Einstein said that it is a miracle that curiosity survives formal education. In America, it hasn’t. To become learned, a person, especially a child, must be imbued with curiosity. But marketing to children and entertaining adults are based on mindless activities. How does watching a sporting event, a televised situation comedy, a music-video, a cartoon awaken curiosity? What does any of this make a person want to learn? The culture doesn’t make Americans want to learn anything about anything. Such people do not make willing students. Schooling to them is something being forced upon them; they naturally resist it. Students who don’t want to learn won’t, and the society has developed no means of awakening curiosity. For educational purposes, the lack of curiosity is fatal. It cannot be cured.

A healthy curiosity is the only weapon against ignorance. Teaching is nothing but the art of awakening the natural curiosity of students, but learning what is taught is not enough. Learning whether what is taught makes sense is ultimately essential. Unfortunately that aspect of educating people is not part of American education.
So, in a sense, what goes on in America’s schools is essentially identical to what goes on in the Madrassas of the Muslim world. In both, orthodox beliefs are taught as truth and critical examination is discouraged. Two worlds clash in loggerheads. “Where ignorance is our master, there is no possibility of real peace.”—Dalai Lama

John Kozy is a retired professor of philosophy and logic who writes on social, political, and economic issues. After serving in the U.S. Army during the Korean War, he spent 20 years as a university professor and another 20 years working as a writer. He has published a textbook in formal logic commercially, in academic journals and a small number of commercial magazines, and has written a number of guest editorials for newspapers. His on-line pieces can be found on and he can be emailed from that site’s homepage.

Invisible Serfs Collar

Using Education to Shut Down Free Choices and then Redefining as Personal Autonomy: Orwell Lives!


IndoctriNation Blog

Patton On Communism
And The Khazar Jews

General Patton's Warning

Tikkun olam
The Jewish Approach to Repairing the World (Tikkun Olam)

A Brief Introduction for Christians

By Rabbi Elliott N. Dorff, PhD, with Reverend Cory Willson

A window into the Jewish idea of responsibility to care for the world—
written especially for Christians.

The concept of repairing the world (tikkun olam) is an integral part of Jewish life. It helps shape Jewish social and family relationships, and even mandates how Jews should speak to others. But why is it important for Christians to understand this Jewish approach to life? And what kind of impact can understanding this fundamental aspect of Judaism have on Christians seeking to develop a deeper understanding of their own faith?

With insight and wisdom, award-winning author Rabbi Elliot Dorff provides an accessible, honest and thorough exploration of this important Jewish concept. With easy-to-understand explanations of Jewish terms, practices and history, each chapter explores a different facet touched by the tradition of tikkun olam. Rabbi Dorff also addresses parallel themes and practices in the Christian tradition, helping you better understand the roots of Christianity and how the fundamentals of Judaism relate and reflect your own aspirations to repair the world.

 • Caring for the Poor
 • The Power of Words
 • The Ministry of Presence
 • Duties of Spouses to Each Other
 • Children’s Duties to Their Parents
 • Parent’s Duties to Their Children
 • The Traditional Jewish Vision of the Ideal World

Birding and Mysticism

Volumes 1 and 2

Glimpse into Illuminati Sex Practices

"The investigation into the prostitution ring in Lille ultimately swept up 10 suspects, including [former IMF Chief] Mr. Strauss-Kahn. They knew each other largely through their membership as French Freemasons."

Jonathan Turley

Barring Bucksom Beauties: Leading Distributor in England Bars Sale Of Hunting and Shooting Magazines To Children

Mouse Menudo: Study Finds Mice Can Sing In Unison

The Next Food Crisis Will Be Caused By Globalist Land-Grabs and Privatization

Corporate Psychosis: Are You Exhibiting Symptoms?

A painting of 17th-century Venice, with a view of the banks of the Grand Canal and the Doge’s Palace, by Leandro Bassano

NY Times

The Self-Destruction of the 1 Percent

IN the early 14th century, Venice was one of the richest cities in Europe. At the heart of its economy was the colleganza, a basic form of joint-stock company created to finance a single trade expedition. The brilliance of the colleganza was that it opened the economy to new entrants, allowing risk-taking entrepreneurs to share in the financial upside with the established businessmen who financed their merchant voyages.

Venice’s elites were the chief beneficiaries. Like all open economies, theirs was turbulent. Today, we think of social mobility as a good thing. But if you are on top, mobility also means competition. In 1315, when the Venetian city-state was at the height of its economic powers, the upper class acted to lock in its privileges, putting a formal stop to social mobility with the publication of the Libro d’Oro, or Book of Gold, an official register of the nobility. If you weren’t on it, you couldn’t join the ruling oligarchy.

The political shift, which had begun nearly two decades earlier, was so striking a change that the Venetians gave it a name: La Serrata, or the closure. It wasn’t long before the political Serrata became an economic one, too. Under the control of the oligarchs, Venice gradually cut off commercial opportunities for new entrants. Eventually, the colleganza was banned. The reigning elites were acting in their immediate self-interest, but in the longer term, La Serrata was the beginning of the end for them, and for Venetian prosperity more generally. By 1500, Venice’s population was smaller than it had been in 1330. In the 17th and 18th centuries, as the rest of Europe grew, the city continued to shrink.

The story of Venice’s rise and fall is told by the scholars Daron Acemoglu and James A. Robinson, in their book “Why Nations Fail: The Origins of Power, Prosperity, and Poverty,” as an illustration of their thesis that what separates successful states from failed ones is whether their governing institutions are inclusive or extractive. Extractive states are controlled by ruling elites whose objective is to extract as much wealth as they can from the rest of society. Inclusive states give everyone access to economic opportunity; often, greater inclusiveness creates more prosperity, which creates an incentive for ever greater inclusiveness.
The history of the United States can be read as one such virtuous circle. But as the story of Venice shows, virtuous circles can be broken. Elites that have prospered from inclusive systems can be tempted to pull up the ladder they climbed to the top. Eventually, their societies become extractive and their economies languish.
That was the future predicted by Karl Marx, who wrote that capitalism contained the seeds of its own destruction. And it is the danger America faces today, as the 1 percent pulls away from everyone else and pursues an economic, political and social agenda that will increase that gap even further — ultimately destroying the open system that made America rich and allowed its 1 percent to thrive in the first place.
You can see America’s creeping Serrata in the growing social and, especially, educational chasm between those at the top and everyone else. At the bottom and in the middle, American society is fraying, and the children of these struggling families are lagging the rest of the world at school.

Economists point out that the woes of the middle class are in large part a consequence of globalization and technological change. Culture may also play a role. In his recent book on the white working class, the libertarian writer Charles Murray blames the hollowed-out middle for straying from the traditional family values and old-fashioned work ethic that he says prevail among the rich (whom he castigates, but only for allowing cultural relativism to prevail).

There is some truth in both arguments. But the 1 percent cannot evade its share of responsibility for the growing gulf in American society. Economic forces may be behind the rising inequality, but as Peter R. Orszag, President Obama’s former budget chief, told me, public policy has exacerbated rather than mitigated these trends.

Even as the winner-take-all economy has enriched those at the very top, their tax burden has lightened. Tolerance for high executive compensation has increased, even as the legal powers of unions have been weakened and an intellectual case against them has been relentlessly advanced by plutocrat-financed think tanks. In the 1950s, the marginal income tax rate for those at the top of the distribution soared above 90 percent, a figure that today makes even Democrats flinch. Meanwhile, of the 400 richest taxpayers in 2009, 6 paid no federal income tax at all, and 27 paid 10 percent or less. None paid more than 35 percent.
Historically, the United States has enjoyed higher social mobility than Europe, and both left and right have identified this economic openness as an essential source of the nation’s economic vigor. But several recent studies have shown that in America today it is harder to escape the social class of your birth than it is in Europe. The Canadian economist Miles Corak has found that as income inequality increases, social mobility falls — a phenomenon Alan B. Krueger, the chairman of the White House Council of Economic Advisers, has called the Great Gatsby Curve.

Educational attainment, which created the American middle class, is no longer rising. The super-elite lavishes unlimited resources on its children, while public schools are starved of funding. This is the new Serrata. An elite education is increasingly available only to those already at the top. Bill Clinton and Barack Obama enrolled their daughters in an exclusive private school; I’ve done the same with mine.

At the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, earlier this year, I interviewed Ruth Simmons, then the president of Brown. She was the first African-American to lead an Ivy League university and has served on the board of Goldman Sachs. Dr. Simmons, a Harvard-trained literature scholar, worked hard to make Brown more accessible to poor students, but when I asked whether it was time to abolish legacy admissions, the Ivy League’s own Book of Gold, she shrugged me off with a laugh: “No, I have a granddaughter. It’s not time yet.”

America’s Serrata also takes a more explicit form: the tilting of the economic rules in favor of those at the top. The crony capitalism of today’s oligarchs is far subtler than Venice’s. It works in two main ways.
The first is to channel the state’s scarce resources in their own direction. This is the absurdity of Mitt Romney’s comment about the “47 percent” who are “dependent upon government.” The reality is that it is those at the top, particularly the tippy-top, of the economic pyramid who have been most effective at capturing government support — and at getting others to pay for it.

Exhibit A is the bipartisan, $700 billion rescue of Wall Street in 2008. Exhibit B is the crony recovery. The economists Emmanuel Saez and Thomas Piketty found that 93 percent of the income gains from the 2009-10 recovery went to the top 1 percent of taxpayers. The top 0.01 percent captured 37 percent of these additional earnings, gaining an average of $4.2 million per household.

The second manifestation of crony capitalism is more direct: the tax perks, trade protections and government subsidies that companies and sectors secure for themselves. Corporate pork is a truly bipartisan dish: green energy companies and the health insurers have been winners in this administration, as oil and steel companies were under George W. Bush’s.

The impulse of the powerful to make themselves even more so should come as no surprise. Competition and a level playing field are good for us collectively, but they are a hardship for individual businesses. Warren E. Buffett knows this. “A truly great business must have an enduring ‘moat’ that protects excellent returns on invested capital,” he explained in his 2007 annual letter to investors. “Though capitalism’s ‘creative destruction’ is highly beneficial for society, it precludes investment certainty.” Microsoft attempted to dig its own moat by simply shutting out its competitors, until it was stopped by the courts. Even Apple, a huge beneficiary of the open-platform economy, couldn’t resist trying to impose its own inferior map app on buyers of the iPhone 5.

Businessmen like to style themselves as the defenders of the free market economy, but as Luigi Zingales, an economist at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business, argued, “Most lobbying is pro-business, in the sense that it promotes the interests of existing businesses, not pro-market in the sense of fostering truly free and open competition.”

IN the early 19th century, the United States was one of the most egalitarian societies on the planet. “We have no paupers,” Thomas Jefferson boasted in an 1814 letter. “The great mass of our population is of laborers; our rich, who can live without labor, either manual or professional, being few, and of moderate wealth. Most of the laboring class possess property, cultivate their own lands, have families, and from the demand for their labor are enabled to exact from the rich and the competent such prices as enable them to be fed abundantly, clothed above mere decency, to labor moderately and raise their families.”

For Jefferson, this equality was at the heart of American exceptionalism: “Can any condition of society be more desirable than this?”

That all changed with industrialization. As Franklin D. Roosevelt argued in a 1932 address to the Commonwealth Club, the industrial revolution was accomplished thanks to “a group of financial titans, whose methods were not scrutinized with too much care, and who were honored in proportion as they produced the results, irrespective of the means they used.” America may have needed its robber barons; Roosevelt said the United States was right to accept “the bitter with the sweet.”

But as these titans amassed wealth and power, and as America ran out of free land on its frontier, the country faced the threat of a Serrata. As Roosevelt put it, “equality of opportunity as we have known it no longer exists.” Instead, “we are steering a steady course toward economic oligarchy, if we are not there already.”
It is no accident that in America today the gap between the very rich and everyone else is wider than at any time since the Gilded Age. Now, as then, the titans are seeking an even greater political voice to match their economic power. Now, as then, the inevitable danger is that they will confuse their own self-interest with the common good. The irony of the political rise of the plutocrats is that, like Venice’s oligarchs, they threaten the system that created them.

The editor of Thomson Reuters Digital and the author of “Plutocrats: The Rise of the New Global Super-Rich and the Fall of Everyone Else,” from which this essay is adapted.

A version of this op-ed appeared in print on October 14, 2012, on page SR5 of the New York edition with the headline: The Self-Destruction of the 1 Percent.

The Dark Legacy

Texe Marrs

Israel’s Netanyahu and the Jewish Neocons in America Vow Revenge

Humanity is Rising (Original Song)

Gilad Atzmon

Stay Human – The Reading Movie | Thoughts on…

Thunderbolt Project

The "Impossible" Star


The Safire Project – Testing the Electric Sun

Spirit Science 20 ~ Water

Machines Like Us

Top Stories

Vaccine Rights

Exemptions & Waivers

 Run for the Cure

Phoenix Tears: The Rick Simpson Story

Activist Post

Chinese Plant Compound Wipes out Cancer in 40 Days, Says New Research

Dissolve Blood Clots with Nattokinase

Cultured Food Life




Acres U.S.A. is North America's oldest, largest magazine covering commercial-scale organic and sustainable farming . . .

Modern wheat a "perfect, chronic poison," doctor says

Wheat Contains Not One, But 23K Potentially Harmful Proteins

The Price-Pottenger Story

Nutrition and Physical Degeneration

A Comparison of Primitive and Modern Diets and Their Effects


Weston A. Price, MS., D.D.S., F.A.G.D.
Member Research Commission, American Dental Association
Member American Association of Physical Anthropologists
Author, "Dental Infections, Oral and Systemic"

Foreword by

Earnest Albert Hooton
Professor of Anthropology,
Harvard University

With 134 figures

Stone Age Diet - this is a diet which we all should follow

Our gut evolved in harmony with the environment

Dimitri Khalezov - WTC Nuclear Demolition [14/26] - 11. September 2001

erklärt für TV Aussteiger

Dimitri Khalezov - WTC Nuclear Demolition 1 to 26

a groundbreaking interview of an ex officer of the Soviet nuclear intelligence
exposing the truth of the 9/11 events

This Video series has been censored all through the web.

Why I believe nuclear demolition fits all the evidence we know about.

They didn't call it "ground zero" for nothing! Before 911, ground zero only meant the area below or above a nuclear detonation, after 911, they changed some of the dictionaries to say it was also the place where terrorists attacked the trade centers. It's all mind control.

Dimitri Khalezov has been an expert in nuclear demolition for many years and has an incredible amount of proof that the buildings were taken down by underground micro nuclear demolition charges! I've posted some links to other material such as the melted cars that could have only been done by EMP type effects caused by a nuclear bomb since there was no jet fuel burning at ground level AND some of these cars were missing engine blocks! They were totally melted! How do you melt an engine block when no fire was burning at ground level - many of these cars were 7 blocks away! They were never explained in any way. Also it was never explained why Tritium levels were 55 times more than normal at ground zero. And of course we have ALL the strange cancers from first responders and many of them have died. They were forced to wear "air quality" badges which Dimitri says were really just radiation detectors in disguise so they could monitor everybody's exposure and pull people out of the hot zones for a while when their badges reported higher radiation. Easy to lie to everybody and tell them the badge is to monitor air quality. That is pure garbage if you think about it. There is not going to be that much difference in "air quality around such a relatively small area anyway.

Dimitri even said that in the 70's he was told that the Americans had authorized the twin towers to be taken down at the end of their lifetimes with small nuclear demolition charges! I did some research and it was true! It was determined that only a nuclear demolition charge could safely bring down both Towers and Building 7 because of their construction. Here's some good information on nuclear demolition...


11. September: Die dritte Wahrheit

Time For Another Look At WWII


The iconic "Times Square Kiss." If Americans only knew what they were celebrating!


The REAL story of World War II that you were never taught!

We all know the story about World War II. The one about how "The Good Guys" banded together to stop the big bad Germans (and Japanese) from taking over the world.
There is just one problem with this official version of the history-changing event known as World War II.
. .
It's a LIE!

Nazis Knew About Normandy

Secret D-Day Disaster

The Real Reason America Used Nuclear Weapons Against Japan

It Was Not To End the War Or Save Lives

Patton On Communism And The Khazar Jews

General Patton's Warning

Edited by Raquel Baranow


Stop These Wars

By Samisdat14's channel

The Hidden History of Jewish Bolshevism & Freemasonry!

How Masonic Wall Street Banksters Financed The Communist Revolution Which Killed Over 100 Million People!


Official Handbook for
Schooling the Hitler Youth

Translated from the Original German 1938

Adolf Hitler’s Struggle for Peace
Widescreen (full)

J.B. Campbell: Extremism Online

Behind the Holocaust

 By Bruce Campbell

What was Hitler’s unforgivable sin?

Hitler resisted Judaism. When you’re a little kid in school or at the movies, resisting Judaism can be made to seem a very wicked thing. As an adult, you can be made to think that to resist Judaism is the very worst, the most dangerous thing. When you see what has happened to people who have resisted Judaism, well – you certainly don’t want that to happen to you.

Adolf Hitler was, is and will always be the most dangerous character in history due to his resistance against Judaism combined with his eloquence in explaining why Judaism must be resisted. Some of us “Jew-fighters” have a personal motto, delenda est judaica, or Judaism must be destroyed. Or, Defense Against Jewish Aggression. When we have studied the history of whatever period you care to name, or just looked at the news, true humans react with the natural urge to remove this cancer from society. The most astonishing example of the Jewish mentality was last year’s murderous assault against the humanitarians attempting to bring food, medicine and building materials to the people of Gaza. Jewish ways are repellant to the human mind and are not examined overmuch for that reason.

Judaism can be simply described as very bad behavior.

Hitler never attempted to destroy Judaism but rather to isolate it and perhaps remove its adherents from Europe. This followed attempts to train Jews to be productive human beings in places such as Dachau and Theresienstadt. As Evelyn Kaye writes in The Hole in the Sheet, orthodox Jews do not work. They are allergic to work, preferring instead to occupy themselves by reading the Talmud and arguing endlessly with other Jews about what they read. So this is a big problem with Jews, their refusal to work and produce something that is not based on ripping off and confounding their victims.

Hitler’s attempt to re-train Jews, which didn’t work, and then to remove Jews from Europe was a work in progress. Since the Khazars had infiltrated Europe from the east, his plan for relocation was to put them back in the Pale whence they came. This scheme depended upon the success of Operation Barbarossa, the great assault against the Soviet Union which was always the ultimate and stated objective of the National Socialists. Communism had to be destroyed so that Judaism could be re-confined to its traditional home in the Pale of Settlement. Hitler’s basic plan for Jews was somehow to confine and isolate them in a place in which they could be prevented from doing humanity more harm. This is a very difficult thing to do because there are so many aspects to Judaism, the most dangerous of which is banking, which is the main point of this piece.

Because now I’m seeing that the main purpose of keeping alive the Holocaust is to protect Jewish banking practices.

Before we get to that, let’s examine the Holocaust briefly. It’s a big subject but the whole subject is demolished by the videotaped visit to Auschwitz by a young American Jew named David Cole, which took place back in 1992.

{Read more at the above link…}

Papal Message to Berlin's Jewish Leaders

Misuse Of Memory: Chabad To Decorate Putin With Medal – AT AUSCHWITZ

Pseudo “patriot” Jew subversives in a panic over ZCF!

Germany Agrees to $300 Million More in Restitution to Survivors

Holocaust blackmail continues

Chanukah Journal

Thousands Of Communities Prepare For Public Chanukah Observance While Russia's PM Embraces The Holiday's Aspirations

Nov 26, 1999


President Putin Awards Chabad Rabbi Gold Medal

In Russia, a Top Rabbi Uses Kremlin Ties to Gain Power

Putin's Support Gives Clout to Chabad Sect

Alan Cassels

The Ultimate History Lesson

 A Weekend with John Taylor Gatto

Pythagoras – Mad Shaman or Mathematician?

What is Wisdom?

Consciousness (Kevin Dooley)

Consciousness Is Not In The Brain

The Quimby Manuscripts


By Horatio Dresser


Phineas Parkhurst Quimby

  By Horatio W. Dresser

Free Energy Physics Explained

Cell Phones are Toxic to Humans and Earth

Brien Foerster – Lost Technology of Peru & Bolivia

Hidden Inca Tours

Our most recent and exciting news is that we are having the DNA of Elongated Skull people of Peru independently analyzed by 5 laboratories in the US.

Here’s another reason to drink coffee!

TransCanada’s Police Abuse Peaceful Blockader  

A First Hand Account of the Arrest (Day 24)

#NoKXL Protesters Swarm Tar Sands Blockade & Lo…

Monday I was arrested at the site of Tar Sands Blockade’s tree blockade in Winnsboro, TX.  Though some people attend an action of that size with the intention of being arrested, whether to stop construction activities or to create media attention, I personally never intended to land myself in police custody.

As part of the blockade’s regular ground team, I participate in support operations for those who spend their days and weeks high above the forest floor.  Monday was no different, and I entered the woods in full camouflage with several tasks in mind, all of which revolved around resupplying tree sitters with basic necessities: Fresh fruit and vegetables, vitamins, warm socks, etc.

After a fairly successful morning of fairly undetected movement, I volunteered to try to draw the attention of several police – most of whom are off duty officers from other counties being paid very well to assist in starving out the tree sitters – so another contingent of ground supporters could send a bag full of materials to our friends in the canopy.

Theses on Groucho Marxism

By Bob Black

Ong’s Hat: The Incunabula Papers
Anarchist News

Black Flame

The Revolutionary Class Politics of Anarchism and Syndicalism, Counter-Power Volume 1

 By Michael Schmidt and Lucien van der Walt

(AK Books, London)

I came across ‘Black Flame: The Revolutionary Class Politics of Anarchism and Syndicalism’ quite by chance and I’m so glad I did; it’s one of the best works of non-fiction I’ve read in years.

The authors are a journalist and an academic, a winning combination because they’ve succeeded in combining sound scholarship with accessible prose to launch a bold, unflinching assault on the myth-making, obfuscation, disinformation and downright lies that have served to distort, discredit and obscure the immense contribution anarchism and syndicalism have made to the labour movement globally and to society at large.
Michael Schmidt and Lucien van der Walt adopt a stance of sympathetic engagement; letting nothing pass without critical appraisal, yet their approach is nonetheless sympathetic to the broad anarchist tradition. The result is nothing short of an exhilarating read. I can’t wait to get my hands on volume two.

Celebrity Net Worth
The Independent

Meet Mansa Musa I of Mali – the richest human being in all history

A new study has produced an inflation-adjusted list of the richest people of all time

The 25 Richest People of All Time

    #1 Mansa Musa I – Net Worth $400 Billion
    #2 The Rothschild Family – $350 Billion
    #3 John D. Rockefeller – Net Worth $340 Billion
    #4 Andrew Carnegie – Net Worth $310 Billion
    #5 Nikolai Alexandrovich Romanov – Net Worth $300 Billion
    #6 Mir Osman Ali Khan – Net Worth $230 billion
    #7 William The Conqueror – Net Worth $229.5 Billion
    #8 Muammar Gaddafi – Net Worth $200 Billion
    #9 Henry Ford – Net Worth $199 Billion
    #10 Cornelius Vanderbilt – Net Worth $185 Billion
    #11 Alan Rufus – $178.65 billion
    #12 Bill Gates – Net Worth $136 Billion
    #13 William de Warenne – Net Worth $147.13 Billion
    #14 John Jacob Astor – Net Worth $121 Billion
    #15 Richard Fitzalan 10th Earl of Arundel – Net Worth $118.6 Billion
    #16 John of Gaunt – Net Worth $110 Billion
    #17 Stephen Girard – Net Worth $105 Billion
    #18 A.T. Stewart – Net Wort $90 Billion
    #19 Henry Duke of Lancaster – Net Worth $85.1 Billion
    #20 Friedrich Weyerhauser – Net Worth $80 Billion
    #21 Jay Gould – Net Worth $71 Billion
    #22 Carlos Slim Helu – Net Worth $68 Billion
    #22 Stephen Van Rensselaer – Net Worth $68 Billion
    #23 Marshall Field – Net Worth $66 Billion
    #24 Sam Walton – Net Worth $65 Billion
    #25 Warren Buffett – Net Worth $64 Billion