At the close of the G-20 summit held in Turkey, President Obama correctly restated his current policy, despite the demands delivered by Turkish President Erdogan in a one on one meeting of the two leaders. Obama stated that there will be no large contingent of U.S. ground troops sent into Iraq or Syria. Obama added that the U.S. will not support a no-fly zone over northern Syria, and also rejects the idea of a safe haven for terrorists in the Jarablus to Aleppo area. This means that Erdogan has failed in his attempt to change U.S. policy. Obama’s statements are a defeat for Erdogan and his sidekick the ex-U.S ISIS Czar Allen. To emphasize the point, U.S. forces have bombed an agglomeration of oil tank trucks in Turkey, destroying about one hundred and twenty of them. These trucks are the vehicles used for smuggling oil out of Iraq and Syria into Turkey – A trade which is notoriously under the control of Erdogan’s son.
French President Hollande speaking to a rare joint session of the French Senate and National Assembly at Versailles has called upon the United States and Russia to cooperate in the destruction of ISIS. French jets overnight attacked the terrorist capital of Raqqa, and destroyed a number of military installations. The time is ripe for the major powers to join in a final offensive to destroy ISIS. The way to do this is to cut the ISIS supply line that cross from Turkey into Syria in that Jarablus to Aleppo corridor, see video statement below.
(EN) How France Must Retaliate Against Terrorism: Cut the ISIS Supply Lines Crossing the Syrian-Turkish Border Between Jarablus and Aleppo, Quickly Destroy the Islamic State, and Bring the War in Syria and Iraq to an End
(FR) La Riposte qu’il faut au terrorisme: couper les lignes d’approvisionnement de Daesh entre Jarablus et Aleppe, détruire vite l’État islamique, et mettre fin à la guerre en Syrie et Irak
Ousted ISIS Czar Allen Raves that US War with Caliphate Will Last “Forever” Unless Assad Is Eliminated; ISIS Reeling on All Fronts as Russo-Syrian Forces Break Siege of Kweres Air Base; Iraqi Army Envelops Ramadi; Terrorists Decimated by Bombing & Desertions in Aleppo-Palmyra Region, Likely to Collapse this Winter; Gnome Chomsky Covers for Erdogan with Classic Limited Hangout Pitch; In GOP Debate Ruled by Monsters from the Id, Trump’s Rejection of Minimum Wage Hike Destroying His Populist Mask as 95-Minute Iowa Tirade Raises Doubts about Sanity; Unstable Mythomaniac Carson Not Fit for Oval Office; Stock Market Decline Pre-Discounts Fed Rate Increase; Ted Koppel Issues Sinister Warning about Looming Cyber Attack; At Iowa Democratic Debate, Confront Bernie Sanders Concerning Crimes of His Saudi Pals
World Crisis Radio
November 14, 2015
With a Report from Thierry Meyssan in Damascus
Eliminated: The Pentagon claimed that US forces had slain Jihadi John, a British member of the ISIS genocide cult who has appeared in terrorist videos purporting to show western prisoners being decapitated.
His Washington Post op-ed chiding Turkey about repression of reporters while not mentioning Erdogan’s role as boss of ISIS perfectly illustrated the classic limited hangout: to defend someone by pretending to attack them.
His rejection of an increase in the federal minimum wage has destroyed the illusion of his populism and may well mark the beginning of his decline.
Highway 47 — Main Strategic Communications Line Between Terrorist Capital of Raqqa and Captive Iraqi City of Mosul — Cut on First Day; Kurds Advance to Sinjar City Center; U.S. A-10 Warthogs and B-1 Bombers Hit ISIS Butchers; Goal of Offensive Is Cutting Terrorist Caliphate in Two; New York Times Spreads Defeatism; Time to Restore US National Honor After Shame of Petraeus-Allen Phony War Policy
Map of northwest Iraq shows strategic town of Sinjar (center) situated on key highway 47 linking Mosul in the east with Raqqa, Syria to the west. Kurdish forces backed by US airstrikes have driven ISIS terrorist fighters out of Sinjar and have seized control of 22 miles of highway 47
Late on Wednesday, November 11 Eastern time, Kurdish forces from the three principal factions, joined by members of the Yazidi minority group and backed up by US air power, began attacking ISIS terrorist positions in the area around the city of Sinjar in northwestern Iraq. Sinjar controls the strategic Highway 47, which stretches between the ISIS capital of Raqqa in eastern Syria and the Iraqi city of Mosul, which has been occupied by the terrorists since August 2014.
The current operation, codenamed Operation Free Sinjar, aims at cutting the ISIS supply lines between Raqqa and Mosul, with its 1 million inhabitants, and thus driving a wedge between the Iraqi and the Syrian territory held by the terrorists, in effect splitting the self-styled “Caliphate” into two parts. Kurdish commanders reported that ISIS resistance was generally not effective, with one Kurdish officer saying that he could observe terrorist fighters throwing away their weapons and fleeing on foot, so great was their fear of having their vehicles bombed by the US fleet of A-10 Warthog close support aircraft circling over the city. Kurdish commanders reported that terrorists of many nationalities had been slain in the offensive.
In action over Sinjar: A-10 Warthog ground support aircraft
The ineffective ISIS resistance, contrasting sharply with the exaggerated myth of ISIS invincibility carefully cultivated by CIA networks in the Western media, has allowed today’s offensive to make rapid progress towards its initial goals. As ABC News reported:
‘Hours after it began, a large Kurdish offensive has retaken from ISIS a section of a key highway in northwestern Iraq that has served as a main supply route between ISIS forces in Syria and Iraq. More than 7,500 Kurdish fighters began their assault on the ISIS held town of Sinjar early this morning after U.S. aircraft conducted two dozen airstrikes on ISIS targets in support of the operation. A statement released by the Kurdish Regional Security Council claimed that Peshmerga fighters had captured Highway 47, a strategic road near the town of Sinjar that is a main supply route between the ISIS de facto capital of Raqqa in Syria and the Iraqi city of Mosul.’
According to Iraqi state television, the Kurdish forces have reached the Mayor’s office in City Hall in downtown Sinjar. Defeatists nevertheless predicted that it will take between 2 and 4 days to mop up the terrorists.
The Kurdish regional government in northern Iraq , reported the offensive without mentioning the YPG and PKK forces involved: ‘ERBIL, Kurdistan Region—Peshmerga forces supported by coalition airstrikes launched a major offensive against Islamic State (ISIS) in Shingal (Sinjar) Wednesday night to free the Kurdish Yezidi town from the militant group. “From approximately 2100 hrs on 11 November 2015, International Coalition warplanes struck dozens of ISIL fighting positions ahead of Operation Free Sinjar, a Peshmerga-led ground offensive to retake the town of Sinjar from ISIL terrorists.” The Kurdistan Region Security Council (KRSC) said in a press release. According to the KRSC statement, “Operation Free Sinjar will include up to 7,500 Peshmerga from three fronts to cordon off Sinjar city, take control of ISIS’ strategic supply routes, and establish a significant buffer zone to protect the city and its inhabitants from incoming artillery.” ISIS militants captured the Yezidi town in August 2014 where they killed hundreds of civilians, took thousands captive and displaced tens of thousands more. Peshmerga forces have dug trenches and forward operation positions around the town in the last several months. “Coalition warplanes will provide close air support to Peshmerga forces throughout the operation,” said the KRSC about the offensive.’
The New York Times recalled the events of August 2014, when several thousand Kurdish Peshmerga fighters controlled by the Barzani-Talebani regime in northern Iraq, generally considered to be closely allied to Israel, refused to resist ISIS and instead simply withdrew, forcing the Yazidi population of the town of Sinjar to take refuge on the slopes of nearby Mount Sinjar, where they faced death from starvation, thirst, and exposure. A major precondition for today’s offensive had been to placate the deep suspicion towards Barzani-Talebani on the part of the Yazidis, who have seen thousands of their countrymen massacred and thousands of women forced into sex slavery. But the New York Times does not describe the peshmerga track record: ‘MOUNT SINJAR, Iraq — Sweeping down in hodgepodge convoys of trucks and buses, Kurdish forces and Yazidi fighters opened their offensive against Islamic State militants in northern Iraq on Thursday with a burst of initial success: The forces cut off the main highway the jihadists used as a supply line, and they moved in to begin fighting for the town of Sinjar. The fall of that town to the Islamic State last year was the start of a wave of atrocities — the killing, enslavement and rape of thousands of people from the Yazidi religious minority — that led the Obama administration to step up its use of air power against the jihadists. And it was with heavy American airstrikes that the fight to retake Sinjar began in the early morning hours of Thursday. More than 7,000 fighters — mostly Kurdish forces, but also Yazidi fighters seeking revenge against the jihadists — raced toward an important supply road, Highway 47, coming from different directions to try to cut off as many as 700 Islamic State militants believed to be waiting in and around Sinjar, flanked by thick fields of improvised bombs…. As they approached Highway 47, the scream of military jets — A-10 [Warthog tank buster] attack planes and B-1 heavy bombers, according to the American command — and the thud of explosions grew closer.’
US Special Forces advisors are reported to be advising Kurdish commanders. This may include some of the 50 additional troops recently ordered to northern Iraq by Obama.
This publication has been asserting for some weeks that the key to defeating ISIS is to cut its supply lines, particularly along the Turkish border between the northern Syrian town of Jarablus on the Euphrates River and the Efrin region about 100 km (60 miles) to the west. Such a policy of interdicting ISIS logistics would be the most efficient means of wiping out this terrorist congeries. Today’s offensive does not target the critical Jarablus corridor, but it does at least inaugurate a policy of cutting the ISIS supply lines, which is indeed the key to wiping out the ragtag Caliphate. ISIS remains a paper tiger, capable of massacring defenseless women and children, but fundamentally unable to withstand a serious attack by highly motivated troops like the YPG and other Kurds, especially when backed up by US and coalition aircraft.
Most news organizations are capable of understanding that, with the Kurds now in possession of 22 miles of the strategic Highway 47 between the terrorist capital of Raqqa and the northern Iraqi city of Mosul, the ISIS holdings are being cut in half. But not the defeatists at the New York Times.
The pessimistic Gray Lady thinks that, although the Kurds need paved highways for their tanks and heavy vehicles, the ISIS irregulars can simply take their pickup trucks out onto the tens of thousands of miles of unpaved roads which crisscross the arid terrain of northern Iraq. As the New York Times writes: “The ease of creating informal roads through the flat, sandy desert in northern Syria could limit the effectiveness of an American-backed offensive to cut off a key Islamic State supply route. The operation seeks to retake control of the highway between Raqqa, the Islamic State’s capital in Syria, and Mosul, the largest city controlled by the group in Iraq….The secondary roads are slower, and they could flood in winter rains, but they will be sufficient to continue the flow of supplies from Raqqa to Mosul, according to Michael Knights, a military expert at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy (WINEP). “The only way to cut off this area is to establish military outposts within line of sight of each other, covered by a generous allocation of airpower,” he said.’
Amateurs talk tactics, while professionals talk logistics, as the saying goes, and it is clear that the mercenary neocon chickenhawks at WINEP do not understand the vital role of logistics in delivering the sinews of war. ISIS pickup trucks can indeed use unpaved roads, but only by using much more fuel than they would on a paved highway. More importantly, ISIS relies on the sale (by such figures as Erdogan’s son) of large quantities of stolen Iraqi crude oil on the world market. This oil has to be transported into Turkey using tank trucks, and these tank trucks are very much bound to paved highways. At the same time, ISIS must deliver large quantities of refined gasoline, ammunition, food, and busloads of new recruits to keep control over Mosul. All of these deliveries will require large trucks heavily dependent on paved roads. Therefore, the defeatism and pessimism of WINEP and the New York Times do not correspond to reality. More ISIS logistics routes need to be cut.
Operation Free Sinjar comes in the context of regional violence across the Middle East. ISIS has claimed responsibility for a double bombing in a pro-Hezbollah neighborhood south Beirut, Lebanon which claimed 43 dead and over 200 wounded. Hezbollah fighters have been playing an important role in assisting the Syrian Arab Army to keep up the pressure on ISIS.
The Israelis today continued to harass Hezbollah and the Syrian government forces. Antiwar reports that ‘as they intermittently have done over the course of the past few years, Israeli warplanes today attacked the Syrian capital city of Damascus, striking an area near the Damascus airport. Locals reported explosions in the area, along with a brief power outage and a temporary grounding of flights out of the airport.’
At the same time, the Iraqi Army continues to close the ring on ISIS-held Ramadi, where only a few terrorist logistics routes remain to be cut. Once the siege is complete, it will only be a question of time before the ISIS fanatics starve or surrender.
On the eve of a new round of multilateral Syria talks in Vienna, “reports on this weekend’s talks … suggest Russia is planning to propose an 18-month period of reform in the nation, leading to free elections. This encompasses the long-standing Russian goal of uniting the existing Assad government, a close ally, with secular rebel faction to fight ISIS. The proposal hasn’t even formally been made yet, but it’s already facing condemnation from multiple factions involved in the Vienna talks, particularly Saudi Arabia and its allies, who insist that any deal for free elections must explicitly exclude the participation of leaders of the current government.’
The Saudis demand that Assad leave at once, suggesting that they will try to assassinate him otherwise, while the British claim that the Russian proposal is of no importance.
The marplot ISIS Czar John Allen is now reported to have left the State Department. Allen has been replaced by his former deputy, Ambassador Brett H. McGurk (born April 20, 1973), who was appointed by President Barack Obama on 23 October 2015 and assumed office as Special Presidential Envoy for the Global Coalition to Counter ISIL. It is hoped that today’s offensive against ISIS will mark the definitive end of the Petraeus-Allen phony war policy, and the beginning of a new phase during which the destruction of ISIS can be brought about without further delay. Only in this way can US honor be retrieved from the shame and duplicity of the Petraeus-Allen phony war appeasement of ISIS.
Another set of debates among the Republican presidential candidates has produced yet another mudslide of sociopathic policies, neofascist ideology, and borderline psychotic personalities cavorting across the television screens of Mr. and Mrs. America. Indeed, in both phases of last night’s troubling proceedings, the various presidential hopefuls seemed to be vying with each other to see who could dish up the biggest helping of criminal insanity to be force-fed to the poor gullible masses looking on. This fourth debate was sponsored by the Rupert Murdoch-Roger Ailes stable of mindbenders at Fox Business Network, meaning that the irascible News Corp. billionaire and his minions have shaped two out of the four Republican party gabfests, surely not a healthy situation for the future viability of the United States. The presentation of this debate seemed to be primarily in the hands of Neil Cavuto and the xenophobic Lou Dobbs – two cringing toadies and bootlickers for the Wall Street ruling class. Their job, as usual, was to blur and obfuscate reality to the point where a gaggle of reactionaries and fascists could be camouflaged as somehow normal or mainstream in the eyes of the audience.
In the main debate, much interest was focused on the supposed front-runners currently leading the pack as the Iowa caucuses and the New Hampshire primary come on apace. These leading candidates are generally thought to be the bombastic real estate speculator Donald Trump and the mentally unstable physician Ben Carson, usually followed by Marco Rubio, representing the gusanos y parásitos of Miami, and the right-wing anarchist Ted Cruz. That such creatures are even considered by anyone as potential presidential timber illustrates the crisis of values and ideas which currently afflicts this unhappy country.
For many of these candidates, and for the fanatics of the Republican rank-and-file, the great issue of our time is that of illegal immigration, and it is this question which has catapulted the unscrupulous Donald Trump into his current position of leader of the Republican pack. Trump wants to deport at least 11 million, and possibly as many as 15 million, foreign-born people whose documentation he claims is irregular. Trump is an accomplished snake oil salesman who has been on several sides of many issues over the past decades, but has currently reinvented himself as the top spokesman for US xenophobia. He says he wants to compete with China, but it never seems to occur to him that, given the falling birthrate and lack of fecundity among the white US middle class, the only way the US can hope to have an effective workforce in the decades ahead will be through the assimilation and education of Latinos, Asians, and others.
The related issue is that Trump’s obsession with deportations on such a colossal scale would necessarily produce the conditions of a fascist police state, or a civil war in this country. During yesterday’s debate, Governor Kasich of Ohio and Jeb Bush attempted to argue that Trump’s mass deportations would not be practical or logistically feasible, but The Donald was not perturbed by these reality-based considerations. Trump, as we have noted, solves every problem by appealing to the irresistible power of his own magnetic personality and the Triumph of the Will. The pathetic Jeb Bush also tried to argue that the spectacle of the Republican candidates grappling with all the lurid details of a mass deportation policy on national television would tend to generate a backlash against the GOP by the fast-growing Latino community. But the Republican audience, carried forward on a tide of anti-immigrant hysteria, is largely impervious to these fact-based objections. What has counted in the GOP debate is far more the reckless bidding war among desperate demagogues appealing to a crazed petty bourgeoisie.
Trump No Populist, Wants Low Wages
There was also a highly revealing exchange about possible future increases in the federal minimum wage. Any increase in the minimum compensation mandated by federal law was roundly condemned by the megalomaniac Trump, the mythomaniac Carson, and the demagogue Rubio.
“We are a country that’s being beaten on every front, economically, militarily. There is nothing we do now to win,” said Mr. Trump, adding at another point that “OUR WAGES ARE TOO HIGH.”…‘“Taxes too high, WAGES ARE TOO HIGH. We’re not going to be able to compete against the world. I hate to say it, but we have to leave it the way it is.”
In other words, the pampered little rich boy Trump wants to enable the United States to compete against China and other sweatshop manufacturers by keeping wages at their current wretched levels here. Anyone can see that US labor can never hope to underbid places like Vietnam, Thailand, and the like. But exploiters like Trump are certainly determined to try. In the real world, the winning formula for the United States is an economy that would be a high wage, high capital intensity, high energy intensity, and high surplus mode of production. As on the immigration question, Trump demonstrates that he has no inkling of actual economic science, and instead goes by the stupid prejudices of rich people who have inherited their wealth, not earned it.
Real wages in the United States have declined by about two thirds since the days of Richard Nixon in the White House. But Trump was not the only leading Republican candidate raving that US wages are too high. He was immediately joined by his closest rival, the erratic Dr. Ben Carson, who may have been a famous surgeon, but is certainly a quack when it comes to serious political thinking. ‘Carson cited the high unemployment rate in the African-American community. “That’s because of those HIGH WAGES. If you LOWER THOSE WAGES, that comes down.”’ Rubio then chimed in along similar lines, giving the GOP its own troika of extreme austerity ghouls.
This exchange may well do permanent damage to Trump, far more than to the other two contenders. Carson is appealing to religious enthusiasts who have probably relegated their hopes for a rising standard of living to the next world. Rubio, for his part, appears more and more as the point of regroupment of a stunned GOP Beltway establishment.
But Trump is supposed to be a right-wing populist who wants to look out for Joe Sixpack, the average working stiff. The idea of raising the minimum wage enjoys a nearly universal popularity, including among the Republican base. Trump had tried to create the illusion that he intends to make Wall Street pay their fair share, as for example with his plan to eliminate the special tax treatment of so-called carried interest, referring to the windfall profits of hedge fund hyenas. But most of Trump’s eager dupes do not recognize that, if the carried interest loophole is worth about $2 billion to the Wall Street finance oligarchs, Trump’s other proposal to abolish the estate tax altogether will put about $20 billion back into the pockets of the bankers’ children.
Put that crude deception together with Trump’s claim that wages are too high, and we might soon be witnessing some serious attrition in the hotelier’s popularity.
Carson, for his part, seems to think about taxation from the point of view of tithing (which often means that the faithful give 10% of their incomes to support their church and clergy). For example, Carson thinks that taxation ought to be strictly proportional: ‘”Everybody should pay the same proportion of what they make,” [he] said … in Tuesday’s latest candidate debate. “You make $10 billion, you pay a billion. You make $10, you pay one.”’ But, of course, the broad consensus of civilized humanity is that fairness in taxation requires a progressive approach, and certainly not a proportional one. Carson’s claim that proportional taxation is the fairest ignores the simple reality that taking 10% of a family’s income will not touch the luxuries of the rich, while it will cut into the amenities of the middle class and even the bare necessities of the poor. Fair taxation is progressive taxation, with the tax rate steeply increasing as the ability to pay increases. (Even worse than proportional taxation is of course regressive taxation, as for example when all taxpayers are required to pay an identical sum, commonly in the form of a poll tax. It was the efforts of the austerity vampire Margaret Thatcher (a darling of most Republicans) of Britain to impose a poll tax which led to her fall a quarter century ago.
This same problem of proportional taxation is on display in the competing “flat tax” proposals of the Republican pack. Carly Fiorina was one of the most aggressive proponents of this cure-all, claiming that taxing all wages at the same percentage would allow the tax code to be cut down to three pages. Rand Paul, Cruz, Santorum, and Carson are all in the flat tax camp, although at differing percentage rates. ‘Trump called a flat tax “unfair to the poor” and “unfair to workers” in his 2000 book, The America We Deserve. Trump stated, “Only the wealthy would reap a windfall, because a flat tax would allow them to cash in interest payments and capital gains without paying personal income taxes.”’ But here again, Trump is on varying sides of the same issue, and has recently started saying that a flat tax would be “okay.”
In reality, a flat tax would represent a tax bonanza for the richest taxpayers. A flat tax would thus make the income inequality observed in the United States even more severe. In addition, the general result of a flat tax would be to drastically cut the revenue of the federal government up to about $1 trillion per year of increased deficits, which Republicans would likely demand be made up through a genocidal gutting of Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, and other entitlements and social programs. Here is where Trump’s actual policies enter into collision with his publicly expressed pious wishes not to excessively gouge the social safety net.
In short, the net effect of Trump’s tax reform proposals would simply be to help the rich get richer at an exponentially expanding rate: “As Citizens for Tax Justice (CTJ) has shown, the benefits of eliminating both the estate and corporate tax and lowering the capital gains tax rate would go overwhelming to the wealthiest Americans. In addition, the lower tax rate structure would provide the wealthy with huge tax cuts on top of the already large tax breaks just mentioned.”
Carson’s main preoccupation during the debate was to avoid being challenged on certain details of his campaign autobiography, Gifted Hands. Reasons for this bizarre situation require a word of explanation. For decades, the candidates of the Republican Party have been moving away from specific promises or platforms concerning what they would be committed to do if elected. For decades, Republican candidates have preferred to rant about the superiority of their general principles, claiming divine inspiration from God or the spirit of Ronald Reagan, and thus avoiding binding commitments to do anything at all. This spirit lives on in this year’s Republican contest, as seen by the example of Carly Fiorina, who is famously refusing to provide written summaries of her policy commitments on her campaign website. If elected, she would therefore be pledged to do exactly nothing, because nothing is in print. VERBA VOLANT, SCRIPTA MANENT – Spoken words fly away, while written words remain, as the Romans already knew. Miss Fiorina refuses to do anything more than offer film clips of herself, reeling off what she promises to do – a very vague substitute. Trump’s contempt for specific programs is notorious, since he depends mainly on his signature Triumph of the Will.
In the case of Ben Carson, the rejection of a specific policy platform takes the even more radical form of a campaign which is not based on policies at all, but rather upon the supposedly compelling qualities of Carson’s life story, especially as presented in his campaign autobiography. Carson, in effect, goes to the voters with his Horatio Alger tale of rags to riches, starring the famous neurosurgeon who pulls himself up by his own bootstraps. “This story is compelling,” says Carson to the voters, “so vote for me.” Whatever happened to “As your president, I pledge to serve you by ….”? To modern Republicans, it seems quaint and outdated, but this seriousness and accountability are exactly what our country urgently needs.
Carson’s strategy includes a series of shocking and disturbing confessions mixed in among his arrogant advertisements for himself. Carson demands that voters believe in his story when he says that he threatened to hit his own mother with a hammer, or when he almost killed his best friend Bob with a knife. The idea here is apparently to stress the depravity of Carson’s life before he found The Lord, partly as a means to make the drama of his conversion more poignant. In Carson’s post-conversion narrative, he claims to have been offered a full scholarship to West Point, despite the fact that attendance at West Point is always completely free of charge to those who have been accepted.
Carson also has a series of crackpot claims about arbitrary issues that have nothing to do with the presidency, such as his claim that the Egyptian pyramids were actually grain silos. He get up at a presidential campaign event and talks about grain silos in ancient Egypt!
In recent weeks, various news organizations have attempted to discredit Carson’s claims about how he behaved in the bad old days before he knew Jesus. This has created the incongruous situation in which Carson has been insisting that he did indeed attack his mother with a hammer, and did indeed attempt to kill his friend Bob. Most people would be glad to be exonerated from these charges, but Carson feels compelled to defend them against skeptics.
Carson is now appealing to his supporters for contributions to fight back against CNN et al. and prove that he was indeed a juvenile delinquent before he got religion. Here is a shrill example of a direct email appeal from the Carson campaign:
‘The Liberal Media Is In Full Attack Mode Against Dr. Ben Carson! The Establishment Is Trying To Smear Dr. Carson With Lies! Conservatives Everywhere Should Fight Back And Help Elect Dr. Carson To The White House! The media is desperately looking for false stories and they are even interviewing Dr. Carson’s classmates from high school! CNN and Politico have no shame and they will do anything to attack Dr. Carson. The liberal media wants to handpick their candidate and Dr. Carson isn’t their choice! Dr. Carson is a threat to the establishment and the “politics as usual” crowd. Will you help fight back against the media elites? CNN and Politico should not decide the Republican nominee! Please contribute $25, $50, $100, $250, $500, $1000, or more to support Dr. Carson with voter outreach and advertising!’
Marco Rubio, not surprisingly, wants the American middle class to give up the fundamental right to a college education as a badge of belonging to the middle class — a right which the GIs won on the battlefields of World War II, and which was institutionalized in the form of Franklin D Roosevelt’s late New Deal G.I. Bill Of Rights. Obviously, the middle class must give up the right to a college education to make sure there are enough resources to pay for Rubio’s tax cuts for the rich. This is of course the path of national suicide, and one which guarantees Chinese world domination in our lifetime. Even worse than Rubio is Rand Paul, who opposes even some meager tax credits backed by Rubio because they are not conservative enough. Rand’s hostility to the Pentagon has probably doomed his fortunes in the GOP.
“Welders make more money than philosophers. We need more welders than philosophers,” said Marco Rubio on vocational education.’ If Rubio means by philosophers actual tenured professors of philosophy, he is simply wrong. Already today a welder needs an associate’s degree. But Rubio’s contempt for philosophy and reason should be duly noted. Rubio’s rival, the tea party fascist Ted Cruz, went even further, describing the officials of the Federal Reserve Board as “philosopher kings.”
Here the reference to Plato’s Republic is unmistakable and should not be surprising. The Republican presidential debates have represented an appalling orgy of irrationalism, a horrifying parade of Monsters From The Id. It is perfectly lawful that the GOP spin doctors should take time out from this lurid spectacle to denounce philosophy in general, understood as the quest for wisdom, and specifically Plato’s philosophy of reason, which has been the greatest engine for human progress over the past two millennia and more.
Monsters from the ID
In a dramatic moment at GOP debate, a new contender suddenly appeared between Ben Carson on the left and Ted Cruz on the right. This new candidate seems to represent in the most powerful form the attempt of the Republican Party to call up the basest instincts in the form of Monsters from the Id. The new candidate is stressing transparency in the fight against corruption and big government. In the photo, you can see right through him and observe the Wall Street Journal logo.
For those who are keeping score, Jeb Bush and Kasich probably still qualify as garden-variety reactionaries. Rubio should be investigated as the kingpin of a crime syndicate. Cruz is a fascist demagogue, and poor little Rand Paul would like to be, but does not quite know how. Carson, Fiorina, and Trump, all unquestionably non compos mentis, urgently need the comforts of a canvas blazer and a padded cell.
Pedro Passos Coelho, the former minority Portuguese Prime Minister who fell from power on Tuesday
The anti-democratic nature of the aggressive and oppressive NATO alliance is once again on display in Portugal, as a reactionary minority government headed by Prime Minister Coelho fell from power today thanks to opposition from the larger anti-austerity and anti-NATO leftist coalition. NATO is now revealed as the prison house of the peoples, from which proud nations are forbidden to exit. The right-wing party that came to power after the October 4th elections earlier this year has been brought down by a wave of protest against austerity.
The left coalition has refused the austerity dictates of Portuguese Prime Minister Pedro Passos Coelho. In a vote of no confidence, the parliament voted on Tuesday 123 to 107 against the Prime Minister’s reactionary government. 1 President Silva must now either allow the head of the left coalition, Socialist Antonio Costa, to form a minority government, or retain Coelho and an unstable Parliament until mid-2016, or find an alternative candidate. Under Portugal’s constitution, new elections cannot be held until the end of next spring. Costa has pledged to end “an obsession with austerity” that has plagued Portugal since the Eurozone Crisis and a € 78 billion bailout scheme in 2011.2
As the British spokesman Ambrose Evans-Pritchard of the London Daily Telegraph put it recently:
‘Portugal has entered dangerous political waters. For the first time since the creation of Europe’s monetary union, a member state has taken the explicit step of forbidding eurosceptic parties from taking office on the grounds of national interest. Anibal Cavaco Silva, Portugal’s constitutional president, has refused to appoint a Left-wing coalition government even though it secured an absolute majority in the Portuguese parliament and won a mandate to smash the austerity regime bequeathed by the EU-IMF Troika. He deemed it too risky to let the Left Bloc or the Communists come close to power, insisting that conservatives should soldier on as a minority in order to satisfy Brussels and appease foreign financial markets. Democracy must take second place to the higher imperative of euro rules and membership.’ 3
If the British leave the EU, they may be planning to take Portugal, their oldest ally, with them.
Anibal Cavaco Silva, the reactionary and pro-NATO President of Portugal
In his message rejecting the formation of a left coalition government, Silva declared: “In 40 years of democracy, no Portuguese government has ever depended on the support of anti-European forces, in other words, forces which have campaigned to repeal the Treaty of Lisbon, the Budgetary Pact, and the Stability and Growth Pact, as well as calling for the dismantling of the Monetary Union and an exit from the Euro zone – not to mention leaving NATO… This is the worst possible time for radical change in the foundations of our democracy… After having realized a difficult program costing considerable sacrifice, it is my duty, in my constitutional power, to do everything possible to avoid sending false signals to the financial institutions, the investors and the markets.” 4
President Silva is an enforcer for the demands of austerity ghouls in Germany, Brussels and the IMF over the economic rights of his own people. The “program costing considerable sacrifice” means the brutal austerity policies of the Portuguese political right enforcing the dictates of the IMF and the European Central Bank. Silva also did not mention that, while his conservative party did win 38.5% of the votes, the combined percentage of the three left-wing parties was equal to 50.7%. 5 This makes his claim that he is protecting against radical changes to democracy a bald-faced lie.
Antonio Costa, the leader of the Portuguese Socialist Party, who should be the Prime Minister in Lisbon today
This strategy of Cavaco Silva was angrily rejected by the Socialist Party leader, Antonio Costa, who called it a “grave mistake.”
The coup by Cavaco Silva represents a crude and arrogant interference by the largely figurehead with the larger constitutional prerogatives of the Portuguese parliament. The Portuguese tradition since the fall of the post—Salazar fascist estado novo dictatorship in 1975, has been that the political party with the largest number of seats in the parliament is given the first opportunity to form a government. But the right wing party lost 38 seats in the early October vote, and could not form a normal majority.
‘“The president has created a constitutional crisis,” said Rui Tavares, a radical green member of the European Parliament [in late October]. “He is saying that he will never allow the formation of a government containing Leftists and Communists. People are amazed by what has happened.” Mr. Tavares said the president has invoked the spectre of the Communists and the Left Bloc as a “straw man” to prevent the Left taking power at all, knowing full well that the two parties agreed to drop their demands for euro-exit, a withdrawal from NATO, and nationalization of the commanding heights of the economy under a compromise deal to the forge the coalition.’ 6
Portugal is now already receiving veiled threats from the financial leeches at the IMF, who claim the country is still “highly vulnerable” to shocks in the market. 7 Recent June reports by the IMF on Portugal’s progress indicate that without more austerity, the arbitrary GDP goals – set by the IMF in the first place – will not be met. Furthermore, not abiding by the IMF’s infamous structural adjustments that demand privatization and a low minimum wage will end any hope of faster medium-term growth. 8
To combat the IMF’s predatory policies, Portugal’s left coalition must not only reach out to their allies in Syriza, but also to anti-austerity forces around the world. The Tax Wall Street Party offers united front cooperation on the basis of an anti-NATO, anti-austerity program.
The xenophobic National Front of Marine Le Pen in France and the UK Labor Party under Jeremy Corbyn are both talking about an exit from the absurd and obsolete NATO alliance. Portugal would like to join this move towards the exits, but it must first deal with the fascist traditions of its own oligarchy.
Frame grab of ISIS film claiming credit for attack
The case of the Russian airliner destroyed over the Sinai Peninsula of Egypt continues to preoccupy intelligence practitioners in large parts of the world. This tragic incident has claimed the lives of 225 Russian vacationers, and also led to the total suspension of British, Russian, and other flights to Egyptian airports, including that of Sharm El Sheikh, the tropical resort city from which the doomed airliner had taken off in the direction of Moscow before breaking up in midair, due either to a bomb or structural failure such as metal fatigue.
In the first days after this incident, a pattern emerged which saw Russia and Egypt asserting that any and all judgments were premature, and that it was wrong to conclude that the tragic crash had been the work of a bomb. It was clear that the Egyptian government, especially with President Sisi visiting London, was deeply worried about the devastating impact a bomb attack would have on its tourist and vacation trade, which had already been radically reduced after 2011 as a result of the various activities of the Morsi regime and its militant Moslem brotherhood backers. Russia was presumably reluctant to concede that one of its airliners could be destroyed by a terrorist group anywhere in the world. The Kremlin also seemed to be avoiding the implication that a terror group had been able to retaliate against the Russian presence in Syria and the many combat sorties flown against ISIS targets.
The other side of this debate was constituted by the British government, whose views then tended to be parroted by American officials in Washington. The UK was adamant that the air crash was the result of a terrorist bomb, and that this was the only possible conclusion. London was obviously enticed by the possibility of embarrassing both Cairo and Moscow. But, quite apart from the well-known track record of lies which has won for the British government the title of perfide Albion over decades and centuries, it was also clear that the thesis of the terrorist bomb was in many ways the most plausible. Maybe the UK and US assertions were an example of the truth being told by bad people for the wrong reasons.
Over the last few days, elements have emerged which seem to solidify the thesis of a terrorist bomb planted by some member or sympathizer of ISIS, or perhaps of a similar group. The London Independent is reporting about a new ISIS video which wants to claim credit for the attack on the Russian plane, describing it as a means of punishing Russia for the air attacks carried on by that country in the Syria:
‘The Isis militant group has released a new video celebrating the crash of a Russian plane over the Sinai Peninsula in Egypt, and reaffirming its claim of responsibility. The seven-minute video was released by the media wing of ISIS’s Aleppo “province”, and praised the “lion fighters” of the militant group’s branch in Sinai for “bringing down a Russian airplane.” The video does not include any details of how the plane might have been brought down, but expressly describes the apparent terror attack as retaliation for Russian air strikes in Syria.’
Of course, the fact that a group of duplicitous fanatics is claiming credit for a terrorist action in no way proves that they actually did it. If the downing of the Russian plane is to be considered a victory for the terrorists, then that victory is sure to have many fathers coming forward to demand recognition.
Anglo-American sources are also pointing to the so-called “chatter,” meaning the radio and telephone communications exchanged among the terrorist fanatics, in which they congratulate each other for the atrocity committed. According to NBC News: ‘Intelligence intercepts picked up chatter between ISIS operatives boasting about taking down an airliner after the Russian Metrojet passenger plane crashed in the Sinai last weekend, killing all 224 aboard, U.S. officials told NBC News Friday. ISIS operatives in the Sinai and ISIS leadership in Raqqa, Syria, were “clearly celebrating” the takedown of the commercial airliner, one official said. Details about how the plane was brought down were also intercepted, but the officials wouldn’t specify what information was shared between the militants.’
Then, after the role of ISIS had been denied for several days, the Egyptian government announced that it had eliminated the boss of the ISIS terrorist cell in the Sinai after catching up with him and engaging him in a firefight: ‘While the investigation into the crash of the Russian Metrojet A321 on Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula is ongoing, the self-proclaimed Islamic State terrorist group claimed responsibility for the incident.
On Monday, Egyptian authorities said they eliminated the leader of the ISIS cell based in the region. Ashraf Ali al-Gharably was the leader of the Ansar Bait al-Maqdis group, which recently pledged allegiance to IS and rebranded itself as the Sinai Province of the Islamic State.’
Of course, the Sinai Peninsula is home to a number of pre-ISIS terrorist organizations, many of them linked to the Moslem brotherhood, and many of them enjoying logistical support from the Hamas regime in the Gaza Strip. These groups have been conducting murderous attacks on Egyptian army posts in this area for many months, without getting much attention in the Western world. There is also the so-called Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), which supposedly has very sophisticated explosives capacities associated with one particular bomb maker who has been attempting for years to produce bombs which could not be discovered by the usual airport metal detectors. At the same time, there is much talk of airport security personnel, who might have been accomplices in the attack. We can expect another round of airport hysteria in the U.S. no matter what else does or does not emerge.
We are left then with questions of cui bono and cui prodest, which it may be premature to attempt to answer at this time.
It is certainly true that ISIS, if it is regarded as an independent or semi-independent entity, has reason for wanting to retaliate against Russia. The calculation here means that losses inflicted on the Russian population may awake the strong and horrible memories of the Soviet counterinsurgency effort in Afghanistan during the 1980s. These painful memories, the terrorists might calculate, could be strong enough to energize opposition against President Putin.
A German expert on Russian affairs told a representative of the Tax Wall Street Party about a week ago that Moscow is now the scene of fierce factional warfare between supporters of President Putin and his opponents. The latter group may be the usual pro-Western economic neo-liberals who want to remain as part of the Federal Reserve System, or the division might be along some other lines.
Another party which has been mightily offended by the Russian return to the Middle East political scene is of course the Saudi Arabian monarchy, whose over-ambitious plans for the overthrow of President Assad of Syria have been frustrated, for the time being at least. And if this is true of Saudi Arabia, it also becomes true of the U.S. faction around Petraeus and Allen, who share this view.
More than one source has advanced what we could call a modern version of convergence theory, alleging that the purpose of bombing the airliner is to promote a common front of the United States and Russia against ISIS. Their reasoning is that if Moscow can be convinced that ISIS planted the bomb, then the Russian forces in Syria will be ordered to attack the Caliphate, which they have so far largely avoided. This certainly appears less plausible, since killing 225 Russians is hardly a way to promote cooperation. This version always leaves out who actually designed, produced, and placed the bomb. Was it ISIS, AQAP, the Saudis, or the CIA? Whoever it is, the Russians are likely to find out, and then the retaliation may go in surprising directions.
We should also remember the track record of Saudi Arabia in threatening Russia with terrorism. At the beginning of the winter Olympics in Sochi, Prince Bandar of Saudi Arabia travelled to Moscow and issued a threat to Putin, specifying that unless Russia stopped supporting Assad against the Saudi backed fanatics, the Saudis would visit terrorism upon Russia. This was then followed by a high profile attack on the Volgograd railway station. There was also much talk about the black widows, the surviving spouses of dead terrorists who were supposedly prepared to follow their deceased husbands into martyrdom.
Site of the December 29, 2013 railway bombing
Bomb at Volgograd train station December 2013
Putin in Volgograd, 1 January 2014
But all of these explanations must be supplemented by a higher-level awareness of what is actually happening. For a number of months, there have been persistent reports that U.S.-Russian cooperation is actually much more substantial than the adversarial rhetorical posturing of the two governments would suggest. It has, for example, been suggested that Obama gave tacit approval, and even encouragement, to the deployment of Russian forces into Syria. This has to do with the idea that an American rapprochement with Iran is now ongoing, and that Washington needs to manage Saudi Arabia (the arch-enemy of Tehran), which is easier to do if the Russians are reasserting themselves in the Middle East. A related idea is that the Obama White House has finally comprehended that supporting the Saudi-Turkish attack on Syria using terrorist irregular forces (as demanded by Petraeus-Allen) has been a disastrous strategy for the United States, and promises to become even worse in the near future. From this point of view, the White House would welcome efforts by Russian forces to mop up ISIS, since this would relieve the Americans of the necessity of destroying ISIS and thus offending Turkey, Saudi Arabia, and various Sunni forces .
Implicit here is the idea that the public statements of especially Obama are designed to conceal rather than to display the essence of his policy. If this is so, then the purpose or net result of the Sinai airliner bombing may well be to disrupt the Russian-U.S. cooperation which is actually happening behind the scenes.
Another possible party to the squabble who should not be forgotten is of course the British, if only because they are the former colonial power which dominated Egypt for so many decades. The essentials of British imperial divide and conquer policy would always dictate that London act to disrupt cooperation between the US and Russia. This is all the more likely in the light of London’s very obvious rapprochement with China, in which the experts from the City of London are providing technical assistance to Beijing in various moves to undermine the U.S. dollar.
Out of all these considerations, the current most likely suspects should be sought at the point where British, Saudi, and Moslem Brotherhood networks interface with the Petraeus or neocon faction of the State Department and CIA.
Urge U.S. and Russia to Help YPG Kurdish Forces Close this Portal; Erdogan’s Election Gains a Case of Blatant Vote Fraud; Dictatorship Looms in Ankara; 750,000 Displaced Persons Reach Europe So Far in 2015, Three Times 2014 Total; Ben Carson Campaign Cratering; Trump Promise to Preserve Social Security Is Worthless; Ryan Prepares New Attack on Entitlements; Guy Fawkes a False Flag by Lord Cecil
World Crisis Radio
November 7, 2015
With a Report from Pino Cabras in Sardinia, Italy
Over the past week, key parts of world public opinion have become increasingly aware of the vital importance of closing the Jarablus-Efrin corridor with its ISIS supply lines, thus setting the stage for the collapse of ISIS, al Qaeda, and related terror groups, and bringing the Syrian civil war to a rapid conclusion. This in turn would relieve the refugee pressure on Germany, Sweden, and the rest of Europe. These issues were raised at the Querdenken conference held near Frankfurt, Germany on November 1. On Monday, November 2, Erika Solomon and Geoff Dyer discussed the Jarablus situation in their article “Syria’s Kurds Use Russian Presence to Strengthen Hand,” which appeared in the London Financial Times. On Friday, November 6, on NPR’s Diane Rehm program, Nadia Bilbassy, the Washington bureau chief of Al Arabiya (Saudi Arabia), pointed to the strategic corridor in the following cryptic terms:
“…this is a major worry for Turkey. And considering that they allow the U.S. to use their military base after long, arduous negotiation with GENERAL ALLEN to allow them to use the bases in Southern Turkey, and now we have a stretch of land on the border area, which goes to almost 90 kilometers deep and I think 60 miles wide, where you have the Kurdish forces there from – who liberated Kobani, and you have Tell Abyad, and now there is a small stretch of land that is controlled by ISIS that it’s easily – I mean, if they arm the YPG, which is the Kurdish Syrian forces there, they will be able, as David said. They are a very efficient and very effective fighting force on the ground, and actually they’re the most trusted.”
During this past summer, the successful Kurdish offensive to seize control of Tel Abyad closed a long stretch of the Turkish-Syrian border to pro-ISIS logistics deliveries, smuggling, and other activity. When Tel Abyad was liberated, the Turkish regime of ISIS boss Erdogan was alarmed, and at the end of July turned to then-U.S. ISIS Czar John Allen to keep the Jarablus-Efrin corridor open as the main supply route for the terrorists. The result was Allen’s attempted policy coup to create a safe haven for terrorists between Jarablus and Efrin, complete with NATO air cover. This scheme was quickly rejected by the Obama White House.
These two maps illustrate the expansion of the area (shown in yellow) controlled by the Kurdish YPG forces during the summer of 2015
Kurds now control long segments of the Turkish border, severely constricting the supply routes available to ISIS. A U.S.-Kurdish operation to block the Jarablus-Efrin corridor could probably destroy ISIS as an effective force within a month. ISIS is a paper tiger, totally dependent on Turkey for survival. Resistance to this urgently needed policy will inevitably come from Erdogan of Turkey:
“Turkey has made one thing very clear: It will not tolerate a YPG presence west of the Euphrates, and will therefore not accept a Kurdish-led offensive on the ISIS-held city of Jarablus, or any YPG-led effort to unite its territory with the Kurdish-controlled enclave in Efrin in northwestern Syria. In the days before the election, the Turkish military fired upon YPG forces trying to cross the Euphrates, ostensibly to shore up their front line with the Islamic State. This approach is not necessarily at odds with the United States’ current plans to further bolster the YPG, in preparation for a planned offensive in Raqqa. In October, the United States deployed 12 A-10s [close air support planes known as “tank busters”] at Incirlik and dropped 50 tons of ammunition to the YPG-led Syrian Democratic Forces. The U.S. military has also recently announced that it will deploy up to 50 special operations forces to Kurdish PYD-controlled territory, presumably to aid with the future Raqqa offensive.”
As Al-Monitor wrote on June 22, 2015:
‘When the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG) expelled the Islamic State from Tell Abyad, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, other leaders of the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP), and the pro-government media reacted hysterically. …Among their frenzied scenarios: “Kurdish state in the making in northern Syria with US assistance,” “Kurdish ethnic cleansing of Arabs and Turkmens,” “Corridor opening to move Northern Iraq oil to Mediterranean.” [This refers to the oil smuggling carried out by Erdogan’s son]
One headline about the Democratic Union Party went further:
“PYD more dangerous than [ISIS].” After taking control of Tell Abyad and linking the Kobani and Jazeera cantons, will the YPG now cross to the western bank of the Euphrates River to expel ISIS from Jarablus? If the Kurds eliminate ISIS from Jarablus, will they move westward to open a corridor from Azez to Efrin canton? The YPG, which entered Tell Abyad with the support of the US Air Force and Arab fighters such as Burkan Al Firat, now controls a contiguous 180 kilometer (110 mile) stretch from Ras al-Ain to Jarablus. Thus from the border of south Kurdistan to the Euphrates at Jarablus, the YPG now controls 400 kilometers (250 miles). Their next potential target, the line from Efrin to Jarablus, is 110 kilometers (68 miles) long. The area between Efrin and Jazeera is home to several different ethnic groups. In Jazeera canton, there are Kurds, Arabs, Syriacs, Chaldeans, Armenians and Chechens. Arabs make up 30% of the population. The Kobani and Efrin cantons are predominantly Kurdish. At Tell Abyad, the Kurds constitute 40-45% of the population. In Jarablus, Arabs and Turkmens are in the majority. There is no doubt many Kurds dream of a full fledged, united West Kurdistan from Jazeera to Efrin.’
All persons of good will should exert every possible form of political pressure on the Obama White House to begin the interdiction of the Jarablus-Efrin corridor at once.
Paul Ryan pushes Granny off the cliff – the classical Republican strategy to wipe out Medicare.
Now that John Birch Society ideologue Paul Ryan is safely ensconced as Speaker of the House, the Washington Post is attempting to gin up public interest for a specious conflict between Ryan and the sometime GOP presidential front-runner, real estate mogul Donald Trump. During the factional battle inside the Republican caucus – which pitted traditional reactionaries against the new look tea party fascists – the establishment media took great pains to disguise Ryan as some kind of a moderate, ignoring his background in the Bircher-dominated world of ultra-reactionary Wisconsin politics, and also ignoring his repeated attempts to roll back the heritage of Presidents Franklin D Roosevelt and the Lyndon B. Johnson in Social Security and Medicare-Medicaid. Now that the need for camouflage is over for Ryan, this desperate demagogue is once again unmasked as a politician who wants to inflict de facto genocide on the American people by cutting the meager entitlements of an exhausted and depleted population. Ryan’s new mobilization, which could be accompanied by another round of tax cuts for the rich and for corporations who are hoarding billions of dollars overseas, must be stopped at all costs.
The premise of the Washington Post is that Ryan wants to gouge entitlements, but GOP populists like Trump and Huckabee want to keep their hands off the celebrated third rail of American politics: ‘The rift was exemplified this week by the GOP stars of the moment. Newly installed House Speaker Paul D. Ryan (R-Wis.) said he plans to pursue a “bold alternative agenda” that would include major revisions in entitlements. At the same time, leading Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump railed against proposals to end or significantly change Medicare.’
Ryan is dishing out the ancient and discredited Republican pseudo-alternatives to the New Deal and Great Society programs, including the cruel hoax of health savings accounts to replace Medicare by shifting risk and catastrophic expenses onto the individual victims, perhaps supplemented by a voucher program. Both would leave the American people holding the bag, facing personal bankruptcy, eviction, and other horrors if they have the bad luck of getting sick: “For years, Ryan has embraced proposals that would privatize parts of Social Security, slash Medicaid and convert Medicare to a voucher-based program, in which private insurance would be purchased with federal subsidies. His vow to try again as House speaker quickly earned the attention of top Democrats, who are eager to revive criticisms they’ve used against Ryan and other Republicans in the past.”
Trump has been concentrating his attacks on the unstable and erratic Ben Carson, at the moment his principal competition. Crackpot Carson’s irresponsible and wild hyperbole makes him an easy target: ‘“Ben wants to get rid of Medicare,” Trump said during a news conference at Trump Tower in New York on Tuesday. “You can’t get rid of Medicare. It’d be a horrible thing to get rid of. It actually works. You get rid of the fraud, waste and abuse — it works.” “Ben wants to get rid of Medicare,” Trump said during a news conference at Trump Tower in New York on Tuesday. “You can’t get rid of Medicare. It’d be a horrible thing to get rid of. It actually works. You get rid of the fraud, waste and abuse — it works.”’
The cornerstone of Ben Carson’s policy is the Health Savings Account (HSA). An HSA is a high-deductible insurance plan wherein a small amount of money in placed into a savings account designated for health care costs. When the money in this savings account runs out, the patient is out of luck. Ostensibly, the account incentivizes the patient to “stay well” by saving his or her contributions rather than spending them on health care. Because deductibles are generally very high, most people will avoid seeking care because they can’t incur the out-of-pocket costs involved before the meager account takes effect. HSAs sound attractive to risk-tolerant, healthy, young people, or the greedy of any age, but are a cruel joke to anyone who actually needs health care services.
Ben Carson will tout the tax savings benefit of the HSA system, but the reality is that any tax savings will only be recognizable to a small minority of the very wealthy. According to a study in Think Progress, “Individuals are more likely to avoid, skip or delay health care because of costs…HSA experiments have failed in other countries.” The HSA system has:
“caused financial hardship for Singapore’s citizens and…adversely affected the cost-effectiveness of its health care system.” Likewise, in South Africa, which has “a decade’s worth of experience with similar consumer-driven health plans,” the cost of specialty care has increased 43 percent, the cost of hospital care is up 65 percent, and uninsured rates have “continued to grow rapidly.”’ 
The crazy doctor Ben invites us to enjoy the “freedom” that HSAs will bring to our health care system, he doesn’t specify that freedom will only be enjoyed by Wall Street insurance companies. The HSA program particularly interests the Tax Wall Street Party because insurance premiums will become a new speculative bonanza for banks:
‘“HSAs TO ENRICH FINANCIAL SERVICES INDUSTRY: The New York Times reports, “Banks, credit unions and money management firms are now quietly positioning themselves to become central players in the business of health care” by offering HSAs, tapping into the “$75 billion or so in new money to manage [that] will soon be at stake.”’ 
What is to become of the elderly or those with pre-existing conditions who can’t supply adequate contributions to their HSAs? If Carson has his way, they’ll be left without options, as he has now publicly (and brainlessly) promised to end Medicare.
After this announcement caused a sharp drop in his poll numbers, Carson quickly retracted his statements, which horrified even reactionary rivals like Trump and Kasich. Politico quoted Trump:
‘“I mean, Ben wants to get rid of Medicare. You can’t get rid of Medicare. It would be a horrible thing to get rid of. It actually works,” Trump said at a news conference. “You get rid of the fraud, waste and abuse, it works. … I don’t know how he stays there.” Trump echoed similar comments by John Kasich last week in which the Ohio governor referred to Carson’s plans as “crazy” and said during a GOP debate on CNBC that they were designed to “scare seniors.”’ 
Carson would indeed be a case of unpredictable chaos and disaster. But at the same time, nobody in his right mind would try to take any of The Donald’s pious assurances to the bank. During his long career as a publicity hound and self promoter, Trump has been on all sides of virtually every issue. He has been a Republican. He has been a Democrat. He has been a de facto independent. He has bought and sold politicians of all stripes. When it comes to issues, he has been pro-abortion. He has been anti-abortion. He has been in favor of ending the war on drugs and legalizing marijuana, and he has been in favor of draconian bans on narcotics. He was in favor of a one-time asset tax of 14.25%, but later supported the Bush tax cuts for the rich. He was for gun control, and now he is against gun control. He was for universal health care before he was against it, and now demands the repeal of Obamacare, saying he wants a system based on competition. He previously wanted the privatization of Social Security, which he now says he is against. Trump once supported Hillary Clinton and Jeb Bush, but now he is against both. Anybody who takes a Trump position on the issues seriously needs to have their head examined.
We should also remember a few overarching facts about presidential candidates in general. Mainly, they lie. Richard Nixon ran in 1968 claiming to have a secret plan to end the Vietnam war, but it turned out there was no such plan and the Vietnam war kept going for five more years. Too bad if you died. Jimmy Carter ran in 1976, claiming that he would never lie to the American people, but he did, and frequently. Reagan said that he would never trade arms for hostages, but his White House was up to its neck in the gunrunning and drug running of Iran-Contra. Bush the elder was famous for his pledge of “read my lips – no new taxes.” But then he raised taxes. Clinton pretended to be a friend of the masses, but then wiped out welfare as we had known it, and later repealed Glass-Steagall and deregulated toxic derivatives. Obama ran in 2008 as a protectionist who would renegotiate NAFTA. But at the same time, he sent his envoy Austin Goulsbee to reassure the Canadians that this was simply election-year demagogy. So if Trump reneges on his current commitments regarding entitlements, only a cretin would be surprised. The same would go for Huckabee, especially if he were facing a GOP congress.
Open Secret: All GOP Candidates Want Killer Cuts – Examples
Ted Cruz recites the GOP mantra that his plan will help free them from big government, but doesn’t add that it will hand everything over to an even bigger, more powerful, unregulated, and corrupt Wall Street cartel. According to the Hill:
“Cruz’s bill, called the Health Care Choices Act, would allow people to buy health insurance across state lines [thus dragging the entire United States health insurance sector down to the lowest level of a Texas or a Mississippi], long a Republican health policy goal. It would also repeal Title I of ObamaCare, which would undo much of the law, including the mandate to buy insurance, the insurance marketplaces and subsidies to help people afford coverage.” [Cruz has long been obsessed with the Obamacare subsidies, which he has compared to the addictive sugar that will make the American people slaves to a supposedly totalitarian government] “Every last word of Obamacare must be repealed,” Cruz said in the statement. “And while we continue that fight, we must also send bill after bill to the president’s desk to stop its harmful effects. Another co-sponsor is Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), who like Cruz, could is running for president in 2016.‘  [This bill was launched when Rubio and Cruz were both shock troops for the Tea Party in the US Senate. Rubio now has his own separate plan.]
The same far right GOP candidate who often retreats into states’ rights and a small Federal Government is eager to dump state’s rights when it comes to the ability of insurance companies to ignore state lines and state regulations, creating what Cruz calls a “true national market.’
Listing “three specific reforms,” Cruz said, “Number one, allow people to buy insurance across state lines.” He continued, “Number two, we need to expand health saving accounts,” and he concluded with, “Number three, we need to de-link health insurance from employment.” 
Chris Christie, the party’s resident bully, struggling for relevance and barely clinging to his spot in the next GOP “big boys’” debate, attempts to camouflage health care cuts for retirees while demanding pounds of flesh from the poor.
Christie’s plans are laid bare in his “12-Point Plan” to re-shape Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid and Disability. On Medicare, Christie plans to gradually raise the age of eligibility – cynically pandering to baby boomer voters while allowing their unemployed children to retire and receive low-quality health care at the ripe age of 70.
For Medicaid, Christie dooms all 50 states to the voucher system, where each state would receive a flat fee per enrollee. As there is no plan in sight to restrict the cost of services, the poor and disabled will just have to make do. Meanwhile, hospitals serving low-income patients are increasingly consolidated and gobbled up by Wall Street private equity firms , who hope to enjoy a bonanza providing low-quality services to voucherized Medicaid patients.
As governor of New Jersey, on the heels of his much-publicized “bromance” with President Obama following superstorm Sandy, Christie vetoed a bill to set up a state health insurance exchange under Obamacare, costing his constituents dearly to renew his reactionary credentials.