Skin Or No Skin In A Game Called Syria

Bashar al-Assad is a geek with a lisp, a former optometrist and ELO fan. But we should also remember what he comes from. His father Hafez al-Assad used the suicide bomber to birth the modern era of international terrorism.

“Although incontrovertible proof is lacking, Western intelligence believes that the truck bombs used in the attack on the American Marine and French compounds in Beirut last October were rigged in the Bekaa Valley, which lies along the Syrian border. If so, the Syrians must have at least known that a terrorist operation was in the works, because they monitor the valley closely. Suspicion of Syrian involvement is further strengthened by a long history of violent underground activities in Lebanon by Assad’s agents. Redeployment of the Marines from land to sea would remove that particular target, but there are other places in the Middle East where terrorism can be used against Americans or American interests. In addition, Assad’s military forces, including his Soviet missiles, make him a serious local threat.”

Syria’s Assad: His Power And His Plan” | The New York Times | Stanley Reed | 02/18/1984

Also remember that the Assads are Ba’athists. Like Saddam Hussein, Ba’athists are fascists who model their party on the Nazis. They are as far from mainstream politics as a regime can get. They have nowhere else to go from how far they’ve already gone.

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The Rising Costs Of Late Life And The Falling Value Of Wisdom

It’s easy to see the retirement crisis as an economic issue of which money is the measure of well-being.

“So now, at 76, [Roberta] earns $915 a month through Social Security and through Supplemental Security Income, or SSI, a program for low-income seniors. Her rent, which she has had to cover solo since her roommate died in August, is $1,040 a month. She’s been taking on credit-card debt to cover the gap, and to pay for utilities, food, and other essentials. She often goes to a church food bank for supplies.

More and more older people are finding themselves in a similar situation as Baby Boomers reach retirement age without enough savings and as housing costs and medical expenses rise…”

“This Is What Life Without Retirement Savings Looks Like” | The Atlantic | Alana Semuels | 02/22/2018

I read it as a cultural issue about the declining value of knowledge.

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The Geopolitics Of John Podesta’s Idiocy

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While it may be probable that Russian agencies or those affiliated with them are responsible for hacking the DNC’s or the Clinton campaigns’ emails, I don’t know for sure.

The 17 intelligence agencies (mostly just two) that Hillary Clinton claims have found a direct link between “the highest levels of the Russian government” and recent Wikileaks revelations don’t really know as much as she wants them to:

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Anxiety Is The Engine Of Expression: Random Introductory Hashtags Re: What Project(De)X is About

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#fanon => Pictured above. 20th Century Philosophy’s anti-hero. Rereading him always unearths some new take on resistance. Few knew / understood the underside of modernity as thoroughly (read: tragically) as he.

#ideainterrogation => My fundamental discursive strategy. Otherwise known as intellectual virtue. Stresses clarification of ideas, concepts, arguments, and portraying opposing views in the best possible light. Propaganda, hype, bad conjecture, conspiracy theory, and general bullshit are the nails for this hammer. So is any assumption that claims to be self-justifying (“this is the way things are”) just because someone says it is, which is one of several different ways to understand “ideology.”

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