Must See NeoCon TV by Publius Tacitus


Tucker Carlson is on fire. Gob bless him. He is taking on two of the more vocal, visible policy nerds eager to cheerlead the United States into a conflict with Russia and Iran. If you have not seen these verbal sparring events then you should carve out 20 minutes and enjoy.

The first is Tucker's interview with Lt. Colonel Ralph Peters. Important to note that Ralph Peters never made it to full bird Colonel. While treated by some media types as a 21st Century version of Clausewitz, I think that Peters is captive to a world view that will imperil America if implemented. Here is his interview with Tucker:

Next up, Max Boot. Boot is even crazier and more strident than Peters.


Tucker's position is very simple and wise–our support for certain countries and policies should hinge on whether or not a policy or relationship serves the interests of the American people. One of the lies that Max Boot pushes in his feckless attempt to best Tucker is the false assertion that Iran killed "hundreds of U.S. soldiers in Iraq." Iran did no such thing. Of the total U.S. fatalities in Iraq during our ill-fated time there, about 10% of the casualties were attributable to groups with ties to Iran. One of these Iraq Shia groups was led by Moqtada al Sadr aka MOOKIE. Those familiar with MOOKIE and his moods understand that he is anything but an Iranian puppet. He marches to his own drum beat and does not readily nor easily take instructions from Iran. Those familiar with the intel during this period know that Iran was discouraging attacks on Americans. Why? Because we were doing their dirty work for them. We were helping destroy the Sunni leadership and infrastructure. Everything we did in that regard furthered the interests of Iran.

Those insistent on demonizing Russia and Iran need to answer a couple of basic questions? First, what is our end game in seeking a conflict with both? Is it war? Something short of war?

Second, what would Russia and Iran need to do differently in order for us to find them acceptable as policy partners?

The World View of both Peters and Boot rests on the delusion that the United States is in control and can dictate the future. We have convinced ourselves that we are the GREAT OZ. We refuse to come to grips with the reality that we are like the doddering old fool behind the curtain. Yes we have nukes and a global military presence. But we are hanging on to this status by spending with the equivalent of credit cards while refusing to make any substantive  investments in human capital and infrastructure at home. In pursuit of our ambition for global dominance our leaders are allowing America to be hollowed out at home. Peters and Boot are prime examples of this rot.


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77 Responses to Must See NeoCon TV by Publius Tacitus

  1. b says:

    Video links above do not work for me. These do:
    Tucker Peters video
    Tucker Boot video

  2. Thanks. I think I fixed the problem (the FoxNews embed code sucks).

  3. Preach it, Publius!

  4. Peter in T.O says:

    The Boot interview was classic Tucker gold. The muppet was frothing mad when Tucker proposed that he take up a career in selling insurance or painting homes, “something you might be good at”, referring to his past policy predictions.
    Tucker has been a breath of fresh air on the rancid cable news circuit. I have followed him since late last year, and he’s drawing quite a diverse audience now. He can get a little petty at times and a bit dogmatic on the religious stuff, but I’ll take him over insufferable zealots like Hannity.

  5. Outrage Beyond says:

    Perhaps Tucker is finally taking to heart that advice he got from John Stewart to “stop hurting America.” (
    Re: “The World View of both Peters and Boot rests on the delusion that the United States is in control and can dictate the future.”
    In the case of Boot, I think a different country may be the source of his delusions.
    But in addition to all that, these guys are both paid to promulgate these bloodthirsty demands for more war, and to never apologize. From Boot’s perspective, the Iraq war was a grand success…for Israel.

  6. prawnik says:

    Even if it were true that all Shia in Iraq took orders from Iran, the best way to prevent the deaths of American soldiers in Iraq would be…not to invade.
    The neocon muppets start a war and are outraged that the people who live in the countries that we invade actually have the effrontery to fight back.
    Of course, ask a muppet how many US personnel died at the hands of Sunni jihadis and who supports those jihadis, if you want to watch a muppet develop a case of sudden amnesia.

  7. MRW says:

    We refuse to come to grips with the reality that we are like the doddering old fool behind the curtain.
    refusing to make any substantive investments in human capital and infrastructure at home
    Also, correct. Because our congressmen do not understand how federal accounting works, and the constitutional powers granted them. They think the federal government operates like households or businesses; “tighten the belt.” It doesn’t.
    But we are hanging on to this status by spending with the equivalent of credit cards
    No such thing, Publius. The United States of America issues the US dollar [physical currency (11-12%) and treasury securities]. We don’t borrow USD from anyone. If that were true, someone would be counterfeiting those USD somewhere, and that ain’t happenin’, sir.
    You’ve got to start wrapping your head around this basic reality, and ditch the 30 years of neoliberal indoctrination everyone is infected with. The US federal government creates the currency, sole issuer. Globally. Period. Basta. Finito. Everyone but the USG is a user of the currency; to wit: households, businesses, banks, state and local govts, foreign govts, banks, and investors.
    The ‘crime’ in this country right now is Congress failing to do fiscal policy for the benefit of the people—which is what happened in WWII when Congress created the middle class by buying/spending armaments in our factories and creating everything needed by Great Britain and ourselves to win the war—but, instead, Congress these days leaves it up to the Federal Reserve to do monetary policy. (“Tax dollars” did not exist after the Great Depression, Publius. People were broke. US federal government accountants understood what going off the gold standard in 1933 meant to our standard of living, and used their power to create USD to increase our prosperity 10/20-fold. The historical financial tables at can prove that.)
    The Federal Reserve is an agent of Congress, not the other way around. But it flails around because Congress fails to do the job given it in the Constitution to manage the economy effectively. Trump appears to have bought the microeconomic kool-aid Goldman Sachs boys peddle as federal government financial action, and does not understand macroeconomics. All his advisors are leading him down the garden path—at least FDR and Lincoln had the brains to listen to people smarter than themselves—and I predict a disaster down the road unless someone wakes up.
    Peters and Boot are prime examples of this rot.
    And tedious, small-minded, appealing to the most craven hyperbolic tendencies of what our elite class entertains itself with of late.
    But all hail Tucker! The guy is on a roll. Thanks god Megyn left.

  8. Kooshy says:

    “Because we were doing their dirty work for them. We were helping destroy the Sunni leadership and infrastructure. Everything we did in that regard furthered the interests of Iran.”
    Yes, in fact for years after the first US Iraq war Iranians were complaigning why the Americans stop at invading Iraq and left Saddam to rule. Back in 90s no one in Iran and the Shia ME dreamed, what George dad didn’t do will be done get done by his son a decade later. IMO the sooner US leaves the ME is far better for the US, ME and the rest of the world. IMO if we truly concentrate at home in a matter of few years we will be the largest producers and exporters of energy, food and technology in the world, with no need to kill and get killed in endless wars.

  9. Kooshy says:

    These guys ( specially Peters) know if they don’t say what the Borg policy asks, they will not be invited to other shows, or quoted in prints. Living testimony to that is Colonel Lang.

  10. Eric Newhill says:

    Emotionally laden hyperbolic BS, veiled threats, accusations, illogical and contradictory scatter shots, lame attempts to turn the tables when pressed instead of answering direct questions…..these craven lunatics present like women on PMS.
    Scary that they have any influence over anything.

  11. turcopolier says:

    kooshy et al
    I rarely speak of my exclusion from the public square and would appreciate it if you all do not speak of it. pl

  12. Kooshy says:

    My deep apologies sir, will not do again.

  13. Croesus says:

    How very clever, Eric Newhill.
    Did you learn to denigrate women from Donald Trump, or does it come natural-like?

  14. Peter in Toronto says:

    Colonel, I’d love for you to at least brief Tucker on Syria, so he could at least fire back against the barrage of Borgist talking points thrown at him by these vipers.
    A man can dream..

  15. Croesus says:

    I’m intrigued by the differences between/among the Medici banking system; Bank of England (a kind of precursor of our central bank/Federal Reserve), and the US fiat-based Fed.
    From your extensive study of the dollar/fiat system, MRW, do you have information or references for such a comparison? thx

  16. Babak Makkinejad says:

    Difficult to know who murdered Khoei. There has never been an inquest and I find it very hard to concieve of him as a US agent.

  17. Fred says:

    This was discussed in detail here a number of years ago. There is a search button on the right. You can find a number of articles on Sistani in the archives.

  18. ked says:

    When I first heard Ralph Peters speak (almost 20 yrs ago). I found him entertaining.
    As time went by his stridency was revealed as more than quirky… super-patriot wearing it on his sleeve? religious fervor?
    Now, he’s got Newt Gingrich Syndrome.

  19. BraveNewWorld says:

    First let me say Tucker did a stand up job. Calm, cool, kept turning back to facts and asking the the key questions. Those guys just weren’t at his level and it showed badly. Great job.
    Second I know these two clips have gotten lots of play across the internet. This is the first time I have been able to see them but I have seen them referenced in a number of places. To me that says there is still a thirst for first rate journalism. I hope others take notice and are inspired to up their game.
    Thanks for sharing the links.

  20. Publius Tacitus,
    I’m in total agreement with all you’ve said here. And you have a strong constitution if you watch a steady diet of that stuff. I can’t watch more than what you provided.
    To your main point, that the hysterical demonization of Russia and Iran is a foolish and destructive policy, you are absolutely correct. I come from a Lithuanian family who was intimately involved in the long fight for independence. They killed Stalin’s NKVD thugs and, in turn, were killed and deported to Siberia. My great grandmother at times proudly proclaimed “I shot the bolsheviki.” If any family had reason to hold a grudge against Russia (most of those NKVD thugs were Russian) it is mine. Yet my father does not hold a grudge. He’s taken several river cruises to Russia, likes the country, the people, the culture and the music. He doesn’t forgive or trust the Russian government or Putin (just another KGB thug to him), but he doesn’t waste time on vitriolic hate and fear like Peters and Boot. I’m the same way. As a young SF officer I had visions of driving a flaming T-62 full tilt across Red Square into the Lenin Mausoleum and dying in a massive fireball as the last act in the fall of the Soviet Union and liberation of Lithuania. Years later I stood in front of the Soviet War Memorial in Tiergarten, Berlin and saluted the Soviet guards. The officer of the guard returned my salute. I truly felt sympathy for them as the Soviet Union was crumbling around us. I’ve always loved Russian history and culture, even when I wanted to blow up Lenin’s tomb. I see no need to demonize them. There are plenty of Russian pricks out there, but very few demons. I don’t want to go to war with them.

  21. Eric Newhill says:

    Weren’t you some wealthy elite defeated after a mere 14 years by the Persians? I guess you probably like to focus more on the part where you escaped immolation and turned traitor advisor to Cyrus. That probably makes you feel clever.
    It takes no innate talent to see that which is obvious. It must take extraordinary effort to deny it.

  22. Croesus says:

    Why does Tucker invite these ideologues to his program and give them an audience? They are useless or worse: they’re propagandists.
    Not at all impressed with Tucker Carlson; he’s doing entertainment not information gathering – dissemination.
    The Jeff Gates reference is much appreciated: Gates seeks to educate his audiences on numerous tactics used by what SST calls ‘the Borg’ and Gates calls the “Criminal State.” One such tactic was defined by Robert Gates: the Criminal State controls the “Middle ground,” — those who control access to information, and as James Madison stated, sound information is the sine qua non of a healthily functioning democracy.
    Tucker Carlson does NOT purvey serious information, he’s an “asset” — someone who has been profiled to the degree that it can be reliably predicted how he will act in a given situation. He’s the straight-man that the Borg can rely on to give a veneer of credibility to their secondary agenda, which is to distract and engender fear, in support of their primary agenda, which is to gain total control of as many levers of power as possible.
    If Tucker Carlson were a serious journalist or civic-minded person, he would not give either Peters or Boot the tremendous benefit of access to a microphone. Carlson taunts both men with the fact that they have been destructively wrong in the past. Who is the bigger fool: they, for pushing their failed “expertise,” or Carlson for giving them a hearing?
    Incidentally, it appears Jeff Gates’ website,, no longer exists or has been blocked by — the criminal state??

  23. Anna says:

    “…most of those NKVD thugs were Russian.”
    A minor addition to your story:
    Stalin – “Born to a poor Georgian family, Stalin was educated at Tiflis Spiritual Seminary.”
    Genrikh Yagoda (Yenokh Iyeguda) – “Was born in Rybinsk into a Jewish family;” was the first director of NKVD and founder of Gulag.
    “About 40 percent of high-ranking NKVD officers had Jewish nationality recorded in their identity documents,” writes Yale University professor Timothy Snyder in “Bloodlands: Europe Between Hitler and Stalin,” “as did more than half of the NKVD generals. . . . The Great Terror could be, and by many would be, blamed on the Jews.”
    “… the hysterical demonization of Russia and Iran” is coming from the same quarters of rabid Russophobes of zionist persuasion (encouraged and supported by war profiteers)

  24. ISL says:

    In my case, I have quite a few friends in Germany, love German beer, and like visiting the country. But I reserve the right to hate nazis (German, Ukrainian, American, etc.). Categorizing a nation/people with the vast complexity that human society embraces into a stereotype for derision reminds me of Orwell’s 1984, and has no place in a civilized society.

  25. Green Zone Café says:

    There was an FBI investigation in 2003, which included interviews of witnesses and a midnight disinterrment of the body and forensic examination in Najaf’s necropolis. The FBI had a big presence in Iraq for several years, for “regime crimes,” counterterrorism, CI.
    After that, an Iraqi investigative judge issued a complaint against Muqtada. There were several operations scheduled to arrest Moqtada from about September 2003 on, based on observation of his habits in Najaf and Kufa. Bremer wrote about Rumsfeld’s role in stalling these.
    Among Iraqis from Najaf, I have heard various theories, from Moqtada being present and ordering the killing, to him being a silent bystander, to him being framed by witnesses connected to and paid by SCIRI.
    Someday me or someone will file a FOIA for those FBI files.
    10% seems a bit low to me for US deaths attributable to Iranian backed militias, but I don’t fault Iran for following its interests and working to degrade the US mission. After all, the neocons like Boot and Peters were all about “Tehran next” in 2003.
    There’s a book to be written on the blowback of David Frum’s framing of “the Axis of Evil” GW Bush speech and the lessons learned by North Korea and Iran from the invasion of Iraq and regime change in Libya after it ended its nuclear program.

  26. SteveSA says:

    Here’s a very informative and short booklet on the subject written in the 1930’s by Fr. Denis Fahey, C.S.Sp., an Irish Catholic priest and seminary professor. I recommend the PDF file (11 MB).

  27. alaric says:

    I found those neocons scary. Are there a lot of people within the leadership of the US Military that think like that? I sure hope not.

  28. Chris Chuba says:

    Carlson did a great job with Col. Peters because he kept his composure making Peters look even more unhinged.
    Carlson got a little too snarky with Max Boot. He didn’t let Boot have enough rope to hang himself enough times for my taste.
    1. These Neocons become furious when someone asks them normal questions because they are used to being pampered by the MSM.
    2. They represent the very cream of the foreign policy establishment, yet they are so unprofessional. They are not alone. Even Gen. Keane will sometimes be steely eyed and sober but then degenerate into a spitting rage and use the same, ‘Putin is a war criminal, intentionally bombing hospitals …’. An editor for the WSJ is using the same line.
    Regarding Iran supporting the Shiite militias, I don’t know the true extent of their support but the fact that we broke bread with the Sunni militias during The Surge after they killed at least 2X the number of U.S. troops should put to bed the notion that we can never do business with people we fought. Emotionalism shouldn’t be used to weaponize foreign policy.
    Final note on Boot: my jaw dropped when he sneered at Carlson for admitting that his support for the Iraq war was a mistake. So let me get this straight, you should mindlessly stick with a position, regardless of the facts or be labeled a coward. This statement alone should discredit him but it won’t.

  29. Willybilly says:

    You’re absolutely right about Tucker and the shpeele behind the whole process ……

  30. Cape Cod Skeptic says:

    Well, Prof. Jordan Peterson (U of Toronto) says, you cannot know what a person thinks if you do not let him talk. AFAIK, Carlson is the only news pundit who actually counters the mendacity of neocon warmongers like Boot and Peters. They and liars like them are given free rein on Morning Joe and similar shows. And TC has taken on the far left/antifa/BLM element of society for their anti-free speech/multiculturalism/post-modernist claptrap, as well. I haven’t seen anyone else on the TeeVee willing to do that. So I say, go Tucker!

  31. Anna says:

    Thank you for the link

  32. lally says:

    Tucker Carlson is interviewed in the following extensive article in The National Interest. IMO, a must read for those seeking more background on the evolution of his positions:
    Tucker Carlson Goes To War Against The Neocons
    “…..It’s most important to parse whether Carlson has a long record of anti-interventionism, or if he’s merely sniffing the throne of the president (who, dubiously, may have opposed the 2003 invasion). “I think it’s a total nightmare and disaster, and I’m ashamed that I went against my own instincts in supporting it,” Carlson told the New York Observer in early 2004. “It’s something I’ll never do again. Never. I got convinced by a friend of mine who’s smarter than I am, and I shouldn’t have done that. . . . I’m enraged by it, actually.” Carlson told the National Interest that he’s felt this way since seeing Iraq for himself in December 2003.
    The evidence points heavily toward a sincere conversion on Carlson’s part, or preexisting conviction that was briefly overcome by the beat of the war drums. Carlson did work for the Weekly Standard, perhaps the most prominent neoconservative magazine, in the 1990s and early 2000s. Carlson today speaks respectfully of William Kristol, its founding editor, but has concluded that he is all wet. On foreign policy, the people Carlson speaks most warmly about are genuine hard left-wingers: Glenn Greenwald, a vociferous critic of both economic neoliberalism and neoconservatism; the anti-establishment journalist Michael Tracey; Katrina vanden Heuvel, editor of the Nation; and her husband, Stephen Cohen, the Russia expert and critic of U.S. foreign policy.
    “The only people in American public life who are raising these questions are on the traditional left: not lifestyle liberals, not the Williamsburg (Brooklyn) group, not liberals in D.C.—not Nancy Pelosi.” He calls the expertise of establishment sources on matters like Syria “more shallow than I even imagined.”

  33. Babak Makkinejad says:

    Thank you.
    US made rapid progress in Afghanistan and later in Iraq due to Iran’s aide. When US made it clear that Iran herself was a target, Iranians prepared for the worse – RG was reorganized ….

  34. Babak Makkinejad says:

    Thank you,I did know any of this. I will have to revise my estimation on who ordered his murder.

  35. Babak Makkinejad says:

    Khoei was murdered in March, Hakim in August. One was, as you say, US’s man, the other was Iran’s. Both murdered after the Axis of Evil speech.

  36. TTG,
    Of course ‘most of those NKVD thugs were Russian.’
    However, the creator of the organisation was not. As his Wikipedia entry makes clear, Dzerzhinsky’s ‘aristocratic family belonged to the former Polish-Lithuanian szlachta (nobility), of the Sulima coat of arms.’ Ironically, the manor house where he was born was destroyed, and family members, including Dzerzhinsky’s brother Kazimierz, were killed by the Germans, because of their support for the Polish Home Army.
    (See )
    As to the incorporation of the Baltics, and other regions, in Stalin’s empire, not only was he himself a Georgian, but the NKVD chief who organised the policies used to quell dissent in the territories newly incorporated in the Soviet empire – and who originally proposed the Katyn massacre – was of course Beria, who was Mingrelian (a member of another ethnic group within Georgia.)
    The decisive role played by members of non-Russian ethnic groups in the Revolution and the way that a myth that everything was the fault of Russians is now being deliberately created was discussed at length by Dr Armstrong in a May 2009 post entitled ‘Airbrushing History.’
    ( .)
    It was, as he noted, particularly ironic that a Latvian government commission had been ‘working away to produce a monetary figure to put on the losses suffered by Latvia as a result of its incorporation into the USSR from 1940 to 1990.’ And he went on to point to some of relevant history now being conveniently forgotten:
    ‘Where did the Bolsheviks get the force that allowed them to seize power? The most reliable and potent military force that the Bolsheviks controlled was the Latvian Rifles: this force supplied the bayonets in the Petrograd coup and the dismissal of the Constituent Assembly. Without the power of these disciplined troops the Bolshevik coup might not have happened at all.’
    And indeed, it seems worth fleshing out the history. At the time of the Left SR uprising in the summer of 1918, the Revolution could have been snuffed out – among other things, Dzerzhinsky was captured. The commander of the Latvian division, Colonel Vatsetis, was summoned to the Kremlin, and Lenin asked him ‘can we hold out until morning?’
    In his history of the Russian Civil War, Ewan Mawdsley observes that it was the decisive action taken by Vatsetis which both saved the Bolsheviks and saw the beginning of the one-party state. He writes:
    ‘There was a parallel here with General Bonaparte and the Paris riots of 1795. The “whiff of grapeshot” that broke up the Left SR uprising also made General Vatsetis’s career; Lenin had found his “General Vendémiaire.” Three days later Vatsetis was appointed commander of the new army group fighting on the Volgar River; soon he would become the first Main Commander in Chief of the whole Red Army.’
    And the Latvians were there at the end – storming the Iushin line on the Crimea in November 1920, one of the last battles prior to the evacuation of General Wrangel from the Crimea.
    But then there is another irony. Decades later, a product of Eton and Oxford, a contemporary of our buffoon of a Foreign Secretary, Boris Johnson, spent the years 1989 to 1994 – when the Soviet system was collapsing – as a regular officer in British Army Intelligence.
    When he went back into academic life, Paul Robinson chose for his thesis a subject which might have seemed utterly irrelevant to the present day – the history of the White army in exile, in which General Wrangel played a crucial role.
    It turned out to be about the most relevant subject imaginable. In January 2004, an article by Robinson appeared in the ‘Spectator’ – then edited by Johnson – to which the title was given ‘Putin’s might is White.’
    (See .)
    A key paragraph from the article:
    ‘While Putin is indeed an autocrat, he is no Red Tsar. He is a typical Soviet radish – red on the outside but white at the core. He is the heir not of Lenin and Trotsky, but of the White officers who fought to save Russia from communism in the civil war of 1917 to 1921. Depending on one’s view of the Whites, that may or may not be a good thing. But, to most, White is undoubtedly better than Red, and Putin’s authoritarian rule gives Russia comparatively little to fear.’
    In another article in the ‘Spectator’, in October 2005, Robinson reported from Moscow on the reburial of the remains of Wrangel’s fellow commander, General Anton Denikin, and the White émigré philosopher Ivan Il’in, at the Donskoi Monastery in Moscow.
    (See .)
    Explaining the significance of Il’in and Denikin in Russian history, Robinson wrote: ‘Together, they were the pen and the sword of anti-communism.’
    Now a professor at Ottawa University, from that day to this he has been attempting to elucidate to anyone who would listen the nature of Russian ‘liberal conservatism.’
    The fundamental points in this argument are critically relevant to the arguments about ‘Russiagate’.
    It is a problem that we are dealing with a spectrum of opinions. However, a central strand in Russian ‘liberal conservatism’ – in which as Robinson has pointed out the 1909 symposium entitled ‘Vekhi’ (‘Landmarks’ or ‘Signposts’) is critical – is emphatically not hostility, in principle, to democratic ideas. What writers in this tradition very commonly argued was that there were institutional and cultural preconditions for the successful realisation of ‘liberal’ principles.
    If one’s society was fortunate enough to possess these, then one was lucky. If they did not, and one did not face up to this fact, the belief that destroying an unsatisfactory authoritarian system would magically turn a society like that of Imperial Russia into a replica of that of England or the United States was a dangerous delusion. A likely result would be to empower people like Lenin, Dzerzhinsky, Stalin or Beria.
    All this has an ironic result. Throughout the Cold War, the Soviets suffered from the fatal problem that their system depended for its legitimacy on an ideology which made it impossible to see the world except ‘through a glass darkly’.
    The boot is now on the other foot. As a ‘perceptual filter’ through which to try to make sense of the contemporary world, Russian ‘liberal conservatism’ has a great deal to be said for it. The ideas of Francis Fukuyama – particularly when put together with those of John Lennon – are about as relevant as those of Marx, Engels, and Lenin.
    And there is one bizarrely – and sinisterly – comic result of this. If one’s claim to power rests upon the claim to possess a monopoly of truth, two things characteristically happen. Commonly political actions generate unintended consequences. If however one is trying to make decisions on the basis of a ‘truth’ is grossly inadequate as a means to understand reality, these are even more unmanageable than they might otherwise be.
    Moreover, if one has laid a claim to possession of ‘the truth’, once these unintended consequences materialise, to prevent the total collapse of one’s claim to truth, and thereby of one’s claim to power (which can imply a threat to one’s physical survival) one has to find people to blame.
    Commonly, xenophobia becomes a handy tool. So it is perhaps hardly surprising that Western MSM coverage of ‘Russiagate’ more and more looks rather like the Soviet press, in the ‘Shakhty Trial.’
    (See .)

  37. Jack says:

    The US federal government creates the currency, sole issuer.
    That is wrong. Only the Federal Reserve can create the currency and it is distinct from the federal government.
    The Federal Reserve is an agent of Congress
    What is the definition of “agent of Congress”? Who are the other agents of Congress?

  38. Hunsdon says:

    During the run-up to Sandbox II I alienated a few friends by insisting that Dick Cheney must be a Persian spy, since only Iran was going to benefit from the “liberation” of Iraq. Later on, de-baathification only underlined my joking concern.

  39. different clue says:

    It appears to me that Carlson has put these two people on a well-lit slide and given his TV audience a microscope for taking a real close-up magnified look at them. In the case of Boot especially, what we see is what he is.
    That seems rather different than giving them a sympathetic platform for them to launch their brain-bombs from.

  40. Thirdeye says:

    Why give Peters and Boot a platform? You know about enough rope. At least on this show the host points out when somebody is hanging themselves. I’ll grant that Carlson’s schtick is as much about entertainment ans information. But we’re entertained, so what’s the complaint? And seeing these apoplectic characters in action is educational as to what they are.

  41. DailyPlanet says:

    An internationalist Bolshevik ideology has aligned itself with industry and is entrenched in U.S politics. Tucker Carlson disassembled Max Boot. Max and the Gen are rabid and illogical. It is a form of McCarthyism.

  42. different clue says:

    David Habakkuk,
    Several decades ago I went to a talk given by a defector from the USSR named Arkady Schevchenko. After the talk was the question-answer. One of the questions was something along the lines of the USSR being an ethnic Russian Supremacist empire at the expense of the non-Russian peoples and Republics. Schevchenko replied that in terms of brute exploitation and oppression, the Russians were the most exploited and oppressed people in the empire. The various non-Russian peoples and Republics were given or permitted various material favors ( greater investment etc.) and sometimes greater day-to-day freedom to live life. Russia was the most heavily taxed part of the empire, to pay for all these favors to the non-Russian areas. He suggested the questioner learn to understand the USSR as an ideology-based Communist empire established against all the peoples and Republics within its borders . . . and against Russia most and worst of all. ( I believe Schevchenko to be a Ukrainian name. If my guess is correct, I would suppose that Schevchenko would rate Ukraine as exploited and oppressed nearly as badly as Russia itself. And of course Stalin targeted Ukraine specifically for the Holodomorocaust. Though his forced-internal-exile of other ethnic groups and nations reached near-genocidal demographic attrition levels.)
    I can’t remember whether somebody asked Schevchenko about Soviet Jews or not, so I don’t remember whether I heard from him at that talk or whether I read somewhere else the reason that the USSR gov was so determined to keep all the Jews in its possession within its borders. The reason for that retention of its possessed Jews was stated to be very specifically to keep them as a safety-valve displaced-resentment object, a sort of scapegoattery-vessel to recieve the unhappiness over the unpleasant aspects of life created for all the Soviet Peoples by Communist Party management of the economy and society.
    And here is revealed yet another real difference between Putin’s
    approach and the Old Communist approach. Under Putin the Russian and etc. Jews of Russia are NOT held captive for use as a scapegoat object. Jews are NOT the target of a general propaganda hate-proppagation campaign. Any oligarchs who have been targeted for control or discipline or other management have been so targeted due to their own personal volitional behavior in the political-economic sphere, not due to their ethnic Jewish or Chechen or Other background . . . so far as I know.
    (I remember reading somewhere decades ago in some very obscure offhand reference that during the very earliest years of the Soviet Union, when the Bolshevik Regime had defeated all armed opposition but when famine was widespread all over West-of-the-Urals . . . that Trotsky wrote some rules about who or what was a “social parasite” to be denied food rations. Trotsky wrote those rules in such a way as to target very nearly all the Jews within the Pale of Settlement area. As smart as Trotsky was, his rules appear to have been written on purpose to achieve near-Nazi thoroughness-of-extermination against all the Jews within that Pale of Settlement area. But famine got so bad that USSR had to accept some of the food aid that Herbert Hoover helped co-ordinate for starving Europe in general, and Hoover’s rules were that anyone who needed food would get food. So Trotsky was not able to carry out the antiJew Starvocaust he wanted to achieve. I can’t remember where I read the three or four sentences which described that in an offhand way. I read them decades ago.)

  43. turcopolier says:

    Daily Planet
    Puhlease! R. Peters is a retired Lieutenant Colonel. Look up the ranks on wiki. pll

  44. turcopolier says:

    Just to be nice to you I did not post the batshit crazy comment in which you credit some ass who says the CIA blew up the two towers. If I had would have to ban you as a nut. pl

  45. DailyPlanet says:

    My apologies to the Lt Col.

  46. Babak Makkinejad says:

    On strictly resource distribution grounds, Schevchenk – a Ukranian was right.
    Many in the Soviet government were Jews; Lenin, Trotsky, Bukharin, Kagnovich…

  47. Croesus says:

    As explained some time ago, the episode from Croesus’ life that I believe is important to recall is how, in the fulness hubris, he misinterpreted the Delphic oracle: The oracle said, “If you go to war against Persia you will destroy a mighty empire.” Croesus went to war and, as you observed, lost — the war and Lydia, his own empire.
    Don’t feel badly, tho, Eric; the Romans failed to heed Herodotus’s parable also: One of the main themes of Edward Gibbons’ “Decline and Fall . . .” is that the Romans foolishly provoked and failed to make peace with the Parthians. Combined with several other missteps, that mistake cost the Romans their empire.
    Is the lesson “obvious” or “extraordinary”? Do you think our leaders will heed the words of the ancient historians?

  48. Fred says:

    I like Germany too. Sometimes so much I wish there were still two of them.

  49. Green Zone Café says:

    Yes, the link that lux provided seems knowledgeable.
    A recent discussion in Musings on Iraq about Sayyid Mohammed Sadiq al Sadr, with some of the history between the Sadrs and the al Khoeis:

  50. Eric Newhill says:

    No they will not heed the words of ancient historians. Nor will they correctly interpret the oracle’s words. They make their own reality and history has ended, they say.

  51. Peter in Toronto says:

    Disagree with you entirely here. He has brought these people out and in full public view, denounced and humiliated their ideology.
    And he’s taken on numerous other agents of deception.

  52. MRW says:

    Hard to answer your question. The textbooks are wrong. You have to read reams of congressional documents, going back to 1912 to get at the truth.
    Medici bank link. Overview. You can look things up from there. I have only a surface understanding of it.
    Bank of England description of how money works/is created. (just like we do but their institutions handle it differently, and use different terms.) If you want an overview just read the first page, the summary section. The rest is details. England went off the gold standard domestically in 1931.
    “Money creation in the modern economy”
    US federal government/Federal Reserve. The US went off the gold standard domestically in 1933/34. You need to know the story of Marriner Eccles. Read these two in order. The first is an anecdotal overview. It was originally printed in the WSJ, but now under a paywall. This is a copy someone made without the paragraph breaks, annoying. But at least it’s short.
    The second Eccles piece. Long essay. I loved it. At least read though footnote 15. Eccles was more popular that Miley Cyrus. And the public in those days understood how federal accounting worked far more than the public today. Eccles started work when he was eight, didn’t finish high school, became a millionaire by the time he was 22, when his father died, an avowed laissez-faire capitalist until the Great Depression hit, and he changed his mind.
    This is a recent piece put out by Federal Reserve bowel-level economists. Could be way-too-inside-baseball for you.
    “Divorcing Money from Monetary Policy”
    Imagine a circle. split it 12-to-6. The left side is the issuer of the currency. The right side are the users of the currency.
    The left side are the US federal government and the Federal Reserve. The right side are households, businesses, banks, state and local govts, foreign investors, banks, and govts, anyone who uses the USD.
    Imagine the left side is split at the 9-to-3 line. Upper section is the federal government. Bottom section is the Federal Reserve.
    The Federal Reserve is the federal government’s banker. So it works up and down on the left side implementing the federal government’s fiscal policy, which our know-nothing politicians haven’t done for the People’s benefit for 30 years. The Federal Reserve IS ALSO the institution that controls the payment system among the users on the right side of the circle, by implementing monetary policy. So it goes sideways, back and forth. Got that?
    The big problem is that both sides of the circle use the same language to describe their operations, when they are opposite! (Example: “debt.” Federal government “debt” doesn’t come an offsetting liability. It is genuine currency creation. No one has to pay it back. “Debt” on the right side of the circle, however, is the kind you and I are familiar with; collateral, you gotta’ pay it back, time schedule, etc. etc.
    The left side is macroeconomics. The right side is microeconomics. Two different animals.
    If someone doesn’t educate Trump about this, and soon, the country is phucked.

  53. MRW says:

    That is wrong. Only the Federal Reserve can create the currency and it is distinct from the federal government.
    Absolutely 100% wrong, Jack. The US federal government creates physical currency through The Bureau of Engraving and Printing, a division of the US Treasury, and its banker, the Federal Reserve, distributes it to banks that need physical cash.
    The US federal government issues treasury securities (88% of all currency, aka it’s a cash equivalent) AFTER Congress appropriates spending, by law. It’s actually Congress that ‘creates’ currency through that means. The US federal government issues treasury securities in the amount of congressional spending.
    Actually, 97% of the money created in the country is bank ‘credit creation’, via bank loans, credit cards, checks. However, no one but the US federal government can actually print up physical cash, or issue treasury securities.
    The only signatures on a physical dollar bill are US Treasury officials. No Federal Reserve official to be found. Pull one out and look at it.

  54. MRW says:

    What is the definition of “agent of Congress”? Who are the other agents of Congress?
    Listen to Ben Bernanke: around 2 1/2 minutes.
    Bernanke: “The Fed will do whatever Congress tells us to do.”
    “Bernanke – We are the agent of the Treasury”

  55. MRW says:

    Stalin’s Jews By Sever Plocker, Ynetnews, Dec 12, 2006,7340,L-3342999,00.html
    “And us, the Jews? An Israeli student finishes high school without ever hearing the name “Genrikh Yagoda,” the greatest Jewish murderer of the 20th Century, the GPU’s deputy commander and the founder and commander of the NKVD. Yagoda diligently implemented Stalin’s collectivization orders and is responsible for the deaths of at least 10 million people. His Jewish deputies established and managed the Gulag system.”

  56. Pundita says:

    I watched Tucker Carlson’s exchanges with Peters and Boot. Carlson focused on Peters and Boot’s ad hominem attacks and got in several ad hominem attacks of his own. He did not challenge inaccurate/misleading claims they made about Assad and the war; e.g., that Assad had killed 500,000 Syrians.
    I don’t know why he didn’t take the opportunities Peters and Boot afforded him to show Assad in a more objective light. But on the theory that those who can, do, one guess is that Carlson simply isn’t knowledgeable enough to set the record straight.
    Yet it would be a matter of moments on the internet for Carlson or one of the Fox research assistants to find data that challenges the 500K number of Syrian dead and underscores that the number includes Syrian military and police — that last a fact studiously avoided by those who quote the 500K number when demonizing Assad.
    Granted, Carlson deals with many topics on his show and can’t be expected to turn it into a forensic analysis of all the claims against Assad. But if, as he maintains, he is appalled by the uninformed claims about the Syrian war, there would be nothing preventing him from bringing on his show people who can easily challenge the most famous erroneous /misleading claims about Assad and the Syrian government’s prosecution of the war. In addition to the 500K number, these claims include:
    > use of barrel bombs
    > use of chemical weapons notably sarin gas
    > claims in the ‘Caesar’ report about mass torture and executions
    Instead (from his conversations with Peters and Boot), Carlson takes the position that Assad is a bad guy and sometimes the U.S. has to work with bad guys to deal with even worse bad guys. This argument doesn’t hold water for a great many Americans and would be unnecessary if more in the American public learned exactly why portrayals of Assad as a monster are propaganda.
    Until and unless the propaganda is exposed on American national television it would be an uphill battle for the Trump administration to win support from the American public and Congress to work with Assad at ending the worst of the Syrian war and addressing the humanitarian crisis it created.
    This said I’m not sure Tucker Carlson has the skill to deal with the propaganda via the interview process; I’ve only seen his show (via YouTube) four times. Two of the shows (with Peters and Boot) were debates. In the other two shows (with Steve Cohen and Mark Steyn) he let the guests talk pretty much uninterrupted.
    But questions about Carlson’s skills as an interviewer, and recommendations about which people he might bring on his show to challenge the most famous claims about Assad, would be a conversation for another day.
    Now I must return to studying a couple of horror stories: “Rise in sandstorms threatens Middle East and North Africa” and “Turmoil in Saudi water sector as country runs dry.”

  57. Babak Makkinejad says:

    Likewise in Hungary after WW2.

  58. Jack says:

    Clearly you did not get beyond the pretty picture and a signature on any dollar bills and missed the most important element which defines what it actually is. It says in nice bold letters on every bill what it actually is, a “Federal Reserve Note“, which is a liability of the Fed and an obligation of the US government.
    Let’s quote the US Treasury.
    Federal Reserve notes are legal tender currency notes. The twelve Federal Reserve Banks issue them into circulation pursuant to the Federal Reserve Act of 1913….Federal Reserve Banks obtain the notes from our Bureau of Engraving and Printing (BEP). It pays the BEP for the cost of producing the notes, which then become liabilities of the Federal Reserve Banks, and obligations of the United States Government.
    MRW, when you’re substantively wrong on something as fundamental as who can lawfully create currency, it follows that the rest of your argument that derives from this fundamental fact is also incorrect. The US Treasury cannot create US dollar currency by law. It can borrow by issuing Treasury bills, notes and bonds. They are debt securities and not cash or legal tender. You can’t send the IRS a 30 year Treasury bond to pay your taxes.
    Until Congress changes the law to make the Treasury the issuer of the currency or authorizes another department of the federal government to create currency at will, your theory that the federal government can create currency into existence whenever it desires is fundamentally flawed. As of right now only the Fed can issue currency and record it on their balance sheet.

  59. dc,
    On all this, there is a fascinating book published in 2012 by an American scholar called Liliana Riga, now teaching at Edinburgh, entitled ‘The Bolsheviks and the Russian Empire.’ Usually, with important books, one can find reviews which enable you to see the gist of the argument in a few minutes. Frustratingly, the only reviews of her book I can find are academic ones behind a paywall.
    However, the thesis on which the book was based is online, and the ‘Abstract’ provides a good account of the gist of the argument:
    “This study concerns the sources of the revolutionary Bolshevik elite’s social and ethnic origins in Late Imperial Russia. The key finding is that the Bolshevik leadership of the revolutionary years 1917-1924 was highly ethnically diverse in origin with non-Russians – Jews, Latvians, Georgians, Armenians, Poles, Lithuanians, and Ukrainians – constituting nearly two-thirds of the elite. The ‘Russian’ Revolution was led primarily by elites of the empire’s non-Russian national minorities. This thesis therefore considers the sources of their radicalism in the peripheries of the multinational empire. Although the ‘class’ language of socialism has dominated accounts not only of the causes of the Revolution but also of the sources of Bolshevik socialism, in my view the Bolsheviks were more a response to a variety of cultural, linguistic, religious, and ethnic social identities than they were a response to class conflict. The appeal of a theory about class conflict does not necessarily mean that it was class conflict to which the Bolsheviks were responding; they were much more a product of the tensions of a multi-ethnic imperial state than of the alienating ‘class’ effects of an industrializing Russian state. How ‘peripherals’ of the imperial borderlands came to espouse an ideology of the imperial ‘center’ is the empirical focus. Five substantive chapters on Jews, Poles and Lithuanians, Ukrainians, Transcaucasians, and Latvians, consider the sources of their radicalism by contextualizing their biographies in regional ethnopolitics and in relationships to the Tsarist state. A great attraction of Russian (Bolshevik) socialism was in what it meant for ethnopolitics in the multi-ethnic borderlands: much of the appeal lay in its secularism, its ‘ecumenical’ political vision, its universalism, its anti-nationalism, and in its implied commitment to “the good imperial ideal”. The ‘elective affinities’ between individuals of different ethnic strata and Russian socialism varied across ethnic groups, and often within them. One of the key themes, therefore, is how a social and political identity is worked out within the context of a multinational empire, invoking social processes such as nationalism, assimilation, Russification, social mobility, access to provincial and imperial ‘civil societies’, linguistic and cultural choices, and ethnopolitical relationships.
    (See .)
    It is a book I have not yet had time to read, but only dipped into. However, the general argument – based upon looking as closely as she could at the political evolution of the ninety-three members of the Central Committees of the Bolsheviks in the key years from 1917 to 1923, which took a monumental amount of work – seems persuasive.
    At the risk of putting too much of my own ‘spin’ on her argument: A key imperative of nationalism – which becomes of critical significance with the spread of industrialisation, urbanisation, mass education and ‘liberal’ ideas – is that the boundaries of culture and political sovereignty be coterminous.
    For precisely this reason, nationalism can be integrative in some areas – in France one can turn peasants into Frenchmen. In the vast multi-ethnic and multi-religious empires of the Hapsburgs and Romanovs, however, it was fraught with the potentiality of a kind of ‘war of all against all.’
    An effect of this was to increase the attractiveness of utopian visions imported from the West, involving the notion of history as tending naturally to the triumph of a ‘proletariat’ which was not subject to ethnic antagonism, to culturally-assimilating but politically excluded members of minority groups in the ‘borderlands.’
    So it is no surprise that people from identical backgrounds could take radically different routes: Dzerzhinsky ends up running the Cheka, while his brother supported the Polish Home Army.
    As regards Ukraine. What Stalinism represented was the absolutely subordination of everything to the imperative of turning a land of backward peasants into an an industrialised and urbanised society which, in particular, would possess the industrial base required to mass produce the weaponry required to fight modern mechanised warfare.
    The only on-the-ground reporting of what is now called the ‘Holodomor’ in the Western press known to me was done by the Welsh journalist Gareth Jones. His father, Major Edgar Jones, a legendary figure in Welsh education, was headmaster of Barry County School, which my father and grandfather both attended.
    As a talk Gareth Jones gave at the chapel where my parents worshipped in 1933 had a shaping influence on my father’s political outlook which was carried through to me, and has long been part of family legend, it was a somewhat bizarre experience actually to find the whole of his reportage up on the web. (See .)
    Unfortunately, the West Ukrainian nationalists have got to the family. A crucial section is headed ‘Gareth’s final visit to the Soviet Union in March 1933, exposing the Holodomor (Soviet Ukrainian Famine-Genocide).’
    But this is actually directly contradicted by remarks by Gareth Jones quoted in the first article reproduced:
    ‘He told the EVENING POST: “The arrest of the British engineers in Moscow is a symbol of panic in consequence of conditions worse than in 1921. Millions are dying of hunger. The trial, beginning Saturday, of the British engineers is merely a pendant to the recent shooting of thirty-five prominent workers in agriculture, including the Vice-Commissar of the Ministry of Agriculture, and is an attempt to check the popular wrath at the famine which haunts every district of the Soviet Union.
    ‘“Everywhere was the cry, ‘There is no bread. We are dying. This cry came from every part of Russia, from the Volga, Siberia, White Russia, the North Caucasus, Central Asia. I tramped through the black earth region because that was once the richest farm land in Russia and because the correspondents have been forbidden to go there to see for themselves what is happening.’
    (See ; .)
    What did happen was that Stalin attributed the resistance to collectivisation and requisitioning not only to capitalist ‘kulaks’ but to Ukrainian nationalism. The Ukrainian Communist Party was purged, and in 1933 a campaign of cultural Russification launched.
    However, these measures coincided with a scaling-down of requisitioning and arrests, and the mounting of famine relief efforts by the Soviet government. A key part of the background was the coming to power of Hitler, and the fear that, as in the previous conflict with Germany, Ukrainian nationalism would be exploited.
    Of course, the famine did not affect the Western Ukraine, which had never been part of the Soviet Empire, and was part of Poland, until that country was divided in the Nazi-Soviet Pact. When the Soviets retreated in front of the German onslaught, however, the NKVD systematically murdered alleged nationalists and counter-revolutionaries: 100,000 prisoners were shot, bayoneted to death or blown up with hand-grenades in prisons in the Western Ukraine alone. This is, obviously, part of the background to the Lviv pogroms of June and July 1941.
    Given the sheer scale of atrocities on all sides, the notion that one can construct a coherent Ukrainian identity, and particular one including Crimea, has always been, to put it mildly, problematic.
    What however the West Ukrainian nationalists have been doing is, to put it bluntly, trying to use the frankly mythical notion that the famine in Ukraine was primarily a Russian genocide against Ukrainians in order to bring people from further East to accept a conception of national identity based on hatred of Russia.
    To see the delusional imbelicity of the support given by the Western powers to this venture, I would recommend a presentation by my sometime BBC colleague Mark Laity, now Chief Strategic Communications at SHAPE.
    An October 2014 presentation entitled ‘Behaviour approaches to Perception management’, included the following suggestions:
    ‘“I am a Ukrainian” “ We have this freedom inside our hearts … …we have this freedom in our minds … … and now I ask you to build this freedom in our country.’
    And Laity then produced a slide entitled ‘Objects of desire …’ showing glossy pictures of expensive cars.
    (See .)
    In the second series of interviews with Oliver Stone, in May 2016, Putin talked about the deal for visa-free travel then being negotiated by Ukraine with the European Union. As he pointed, people have been led to believe that they will be able to work in Europe, but this is unlikely to happen. And he went on to comment:
    ‘Right now, a Ukrainian’s dream is to work as a nurse or a gardener or a nanny in a European country amid the complete de-industrialization of the country. Why did they need all that? I simply cannot imagine.’
    This is, I think, essentially accurate. Those who tempted Ukrainians with promises that a ‘European choice’ would produce cornucopia, in my view, deserve to rot in Hell.

  60. Fred says:

    This is an interesting dsicussion. The comment on Liliana Riga’s book “The ‘Russian’ Revolution was led primarily by elites of the empire’s non-Russian national minorities.” brings up the question as to whether the American left’s ongoing cultural revolution can be said to stem from a similar grouping of elites.

  61. Fred,
    In haste, because I am about to disappear on holiday.
    What you suggest is essentially what I think.
    Much more needs to be said about this, but yes, it seems to me that we are seeing again the power of the delusion that a kind of ‘Flucht nach vorn’ into a utopian future where cultural difference and the legacies of the past do not matter is going to work.
    There is here also an ironic ‘twist’. As may be apparent, sympathising with Bolsheviks is not something that comes very naturally to me.
    But it is precisely because Liliana Riga has spent so much time looking at the dilemmas people like Dzerzhinsky faced that the parallels with what contemporary élites are doing, as it were, leap up and hit you.
    And a really alarming parallel is the complete inability of such people to have any understanding of the depth of resistance and resentment they engender.

  62. DianaLC says:

    I have come to the point of not watching any news except for a short time in the day just to keep up with the hysteria over the newest scandalous revelation and to catch Tucker in the evening. I really enjoy watching him bring out the real idiocy of many of his guests who have deemed themselves experts we need to listen to.

  63. different clue says:

    Babak Makkinejad,
    Lenin was ethnic Russian with some Kazakh ancestry. I don’t know about Bukharin.
    Kaganovich was Jewish. So was Yagoda. So were some other such. After they had engineered and set up all the basic skeletons and nervous systems of all the overseas spy and agent networks, Stalin had them both killed. I read a theory that he did that to erase all knowledge (outside of Stalin’s own brain) they had of how these networks had been set up and who was in them.
    I suspect the Jews in the Soviet government had already defected from Jewish cultural concerns and/or Jewish communal involvement or loyalty. Most of the Jews in the Soviet Union were not in the government and received no benefit from the presence of what one might well call JINOs ( Jews In Name Only) in that government.

  64. different clue says:

    David Habakkuk,
    Your paragraphs on food-and-famine events in the Ukraine are very interesting and quite different from what I thought I know about that. Is it being suggested that the biggest famines were indeed in the early 1920s and that there was no separate famine in East Ukraine in the 1930s to weaken opposition to Collectivization by demographically attriting and degrading the peasant-class ethnic-East Ukrainians? I have never read Robert Conquest but only heard of his book on the Stalinist Holodomor. Is everything I have heard is in that book basically wrong?
    Thank you also for the detailed paragraphs before that. If the Communist Revolution was indeed a heavily peripheral-nationality-driven Revolution, could some of the attitudes held by its makers against Russia have carried over into the USSR government even after Stalin de-“foreignized” it and “russified” its leaders and cadres?

  65. different clue says:

    I think I can guess why Carlson didn’t do the patient disassionate exposure or invitation to self-exposure which you would have liked to see more of.
    The Bootses and Peterses and such are very skilled at verbal combat. They can function like trolls whenever they want to derail the questioner’s train of thought. They ad hominemed Carlson to bait him into ad homineming them back. They did that to degrade and derail the conversation. Peters was better at that then Boot was.
    That is why I have voiced the hope that Carlson would watch the whole interview after each show the way football teams watch each game after the game. He would do it to analyse how the interview subject functions, how he reacts to that functioning, and how to work out different responses so as to deflect and derail the subjects verbal tricks, trolling attacks, etc.

  66. paulj says:

    “The twelve Federal Reserve Banks issue them into circulation…”
    Correct. $ of physical currency are exchanged for $ in an account…that already exist. No new $ are created. It’s an asset-swap so we can have cash if we want it. You can’t put numbers in your wallet.
    “It pays the BEP for the cost of producing the notes, which then become liabilities of the Federal Reserve Banks, and obligations of the United States Government.”
    Correct. The Federal government is obligated to give you a $ just like the one you are presenting to the government to be redeemed. Not much of an ‘obligation’. The obligation is a matter of double-entry accounting. When the government spends a $ it is an asset for the target of the spending and a liability (a debit or ‘debt’) for the issuer. A liability that can always be satisfied as demonstrated.
    “US Treasury cannot create US dollar currency by law”.
    Correct. Article I Section 8 of the U.S. Constitution gives Congress and only Congress the power to create money.
    Congress created the FRBS, and therefore the duties of the Fed. How does that put the Fed above Congress in the hierarchy of power?
    Explain to us how the Fed ‘creates’ new $ (increases the money supply). What are the precipitating events?
    “Until Congress changes the law to make the Treasury the issuer of the currency …”
    Congress passes spending bills and Treasury is compelled to mark up the appropriate private sector bank account (the targets of the spending).
    The Fed does accounting.
    Further, every penny earned by the Fed is turned over to Treasury, less operating expenses. The Fed is a subcontractor that manages interest rates in the FRBS.

  67. MRW says:

    Jack, I think we’re quibbling over semantics.
    From the Bureau of Engraving and Printing’s website:

    The main difference between the Federal Reserve Notes and Federal Reserve Bank Notes was that the former were obligations [IOUs/liabilities] of the U.S. Government whereas the latter were obligations [IOUs/liabilities] of the individual Federal Reserve banks that issued them.

    From that same document:

    As a result, the Federal Reserve Act of December 23, 1913, established the Federal Reserve System and authorized the printing of Federal Reserve Notes. Since these notes were first issued in 1914, they have always been produced by the Bureau of Engraving and Printing.

    Only the Bureau of Engraving and Printing (US Treasury) can print them. There are no printing presses at any Federal Reserve bank.
    I think we’re quibbling over the word “issue.” The Federal Reserve is the US Treasury’s banker. You say it issues them. I say it distributes the FR Notes that the BEP produces for them and which the Federal Reserve pays for. You say tomayto, I say tomahtoe. Either way, the US Treasury (Executive Branch) and the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve (federal government agency) authorizes their issuance, production, and amount.

  68. MRW says:

    This is a portion of a personal email from a Division Manager at the Bureau of Engraving and Printing I communicate with at the BEP in Fort Worth, TX three years ago. One of many officials I consult; I think they think I’m a pest.

    Over the past 150 years, the US Government has issued 10 different types of currency. Each type had limitations for issuance built into the authorizing acts. The US Code mentioned in the original email relates to United States Notes. The $300 million limit was set in 2006 to match up with the estimated amount of notes still considered to be in circulation. This was to correct the limit set in 1878 of $347,681,016. The limit was also imposed by Congress just to make sure that the Secretary of the Treasury does not restart issuing the notes, which he is still technically authorized to do.
    Currently, only Federal Reserve Notes are issued. Originally, the 1913 act authorizing these notes limited the amount that could be issued as a percentage of the gold held by the different Federal Reserve Banks. In 1932, the collateral used for issuance was expanded to include United States securities. Overtime, the range of things that can used as collateral has expanded. At this time, a Federal Reserve Bank must hold collateral equal to the amount of notes it issues. This is spelled out in 12 USC 412: “>

    The salient paragraph from 12 USC 412:

    Any Federal Reserve bank may make application to the local Federal Reserve agent for such amount of the Federal Reserve notes hereinbefore provided for as it may require. Such application shall be accompanied with a tender to the local Federal Reserve agent of collateral in amount equal to the sum of the Federal Reserve notes thus applied for and issued pursuant to such application. The collateral security thus offered shall be notes, drafts, bills of exchange, or acceptances acquired under section 92, 342 to 348, 349 to 352, 361, 372, or 373 of this title, or bills of exchange endorsed by a member bank of any Federal Reserve district and purchased under the provisions of sections 348a and 353 to 359 of this title, or bankers’ acceptances purchased under the provisions of said sections 348a and 353 to 359 of this title, or gold certificates, or Special Drawing Right certificates, or any obligations which are direct obligations of, or are fully guaranteed as to principal and interest by, the United States or any agency thereof, or assets that Federal Reserve banks may purchase or hold under sections 348a and 353 to 359 of this title or any other asset of a Federal Reserve bank. In no event shall such collateral security be less than the amount of Federal Reserve notes applied for. The Federal Reserve agent shall each day notify the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System [a federal government entity appointed by the President for 14-year terms] of all issues and withdrawals of Federal Reserve notes to and by the Federal Reserve bank to which he is accredited. The said Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System may at any time call upon a Federal Reserve bank for additional security to protect the Federal Reserve notes issued to it. Collateral shall not be required for Federal Reserve notes which are held in the vaults of, or are otherwise held by or on behalf of, Federal Reserve banks.

    The Bureau of Engraving and Printing (BEP) has no such obligations to some higher entity. It is governed by the US Treasury, the constitutional head cheese.

  69. MRW says:

    They are debt securities and not cash or legal tender. You can’t send the IRS a 30 year Treasury bond to pay your taxes.
    Technically, a treasury security (T-bill, T-note, T-bond) is a CD you purchase from the federal government through a “Primary Dealer” and is then held in a Federal Reserve savings account (called a securities account) through your bank.
    Basically, It’s an asset swap. You transfer dollars in your commercial bank account—unprotected when more than $250,000 per account—for dollars protected in a risk-free US Treasury account and guaranteed by “the full faith and credit” of the USG. And you get interest on them, unlike physical currency! Or gold!
    Individuals can buy treasury bonds through treasurydirect. gov. Treasurydirect allows you to specify up to 50% of your twice-yearly interest payments for withholding, and as specifies,

    If you hold a Treasury bond with us, we can ease your tax burden by withholding up to 50 percent of your interest earnings.
    TreasuryDirect allows you to specify online the percentage you want us to withhold.
    With either system, we transfer your withholdings to the Internal Revenue Service and report the withheld amount on your Form 1099-INT. [It doesn’t touch your capital]

    If a major corp or institution needs to cash in its CD to pay a humungous tax bill (Ha!), it authorizes the Federal Reserve to sell its treasury security through a Primary Dealer, and the sale amount (capital plus interest) is transferred back to the corp or institution’s commercial bank account.
    The daily market in treasury security trades is currently around $750 billion. Everyone in the world wants them. Where else are they going to get such a great deal? And besides, USD cannot leave the US banking system. By law. So foreign govts either need to buy US goods with their USD, wire their USD profits back to their home country by exchanging them for other currency, or buy treasury securities. When they cash them in, it’s called “paying off the National Debt.” (See

  70. MRW says:

    Article I Section 8 of the U.S. Constitution gives Congress and only Congress the power to create money.
    100% correct. Which it does by “Appropriating.”

  71. MRW says:

    Paulj at 16 July 2017 at 04:40 PM said it better than I, and far more simply. Congress is the ultimate poo-bah, which I neglected to stress, and its spending bills dictate what the US Treasury can do, and does do. All the time. Don’t forget the US Treasury is obligated to honor the appropriations of past Congresses, even if you don’t hear them being renewed every year.
    Congress passes spending bills and Treasury is compelled to mark up the appropriate private sector bank account (the targets of the spending).
    Exactly. First, the Federal Reserve marks up the congressionally approved amount in the US Treasury’s General Account at the Fed, which the Fed then distributes to the “appropriate private sector bank account.”
    This usually produces an overdraft in Treasury’s General Account. (It definitely increases the money supply in the real economy).
    There’s a law on the book from the gold standard days that says Treasury’s General Account cannot have an overdraft (or be zero). No one got rid of it when we went off the gold standard domestically in 1933/34. Congress could get rid of it if it wanted (but I think they held onto it at the time because international payments were still denominated in gold, and no one understood what the effects might be if they lifted it. Now it’s just there as an operating constraint and everyone is used to it).
    So currently two to four weeks later, the US Treasury issues treasury securities in the amount of the Congressional appropriation (spending/whatever Congress is buying from the private sector).
    It sells these treasury securities on the open market to the private sector (aka The Public) and foreign investors/govts/banks through Primary Dealers. The Public and foreign entities swap the cash in their commercial accounts for savings instruments protected by the federal government. The Federal Reserve does not create these new treasury securities, sell them, or buy them. Not allowed to. It can only operate in the treasury security aftermarket.
    The sale proceeds are returned to Treasury’s General Account and the money supply is restored to balance.

  72. Croesus says:

    Thank you.
    See you in a month or so!

  73. Neil Schipper says:

    David Habakkuk,
    Interesting reading about the ideas of Liliana Riga and the notion of the need for a multi-ethnic elite to withstand pressures from Romanov-era centers of power. Thanks.
    You wrote:

    The only on-the-ground reporting of what is now called the ‘Holodomor’ in the Western press known to me was done by the Welsh journalist Gareth Jones.

    This reminded of this article from one month ago: How a female Jewish journalist alerted the world to Ukraine’s silent starvation. This was the first I’d heard of this very gutsy woman.

  74. RangerRay says:

    I concur with Publius Tacitus that Ralph Peters’ comments should be carefully evaluated on the basis of their merits. However, I take exception to the implication that Peters’ positions hold less relevance due to the fact that he retired from the US Army as an LTC vice an O-6, somehow not quite measuring up. According to Peter’s Wikipedia bio, he spent only 18 years as a commissioned officer and retired in 1998 with 22 counting his earlier enlisted time. Considering the time frame in which Peters served, his relatively limited years of commissioned service, and the fact that he was a Russian Foreign Area Officer (FAO), retiring as an O-5 was par for the course.

  75. Babak Makkinejad says:

    In regards to Lenin, you are myth-informed.

  76. Jack says:

    I believe you are conflating several things.
    Yes, Congress is the legislative body under our Constitution and passes the laws. It created the Federal Reserve Banks and gave them the authority to do several things under current law. Of course it can change them in the future including disbanding the Fed.
    What does the Fed do under current law? It manages the payment system, is a regulator of commercial banks, is a lender of last resort to commercial banks, and it manages monetary policy which includes issuing legal tender currency, setting interest rates, etc.
    Under current law the Treasury can’t issue currency, that role has been given to the Fed. The Fed is independent in its conduct of monetary policy. The Treasury and the President can’t dictate it.
    The expenditures of the federal government under current law must be financed through taxes, duties and other revenue and the remainder has to be borrowed. This shows up on the balance sheet as a debt obligation. The Fed can choose to buy federal government securities but there are no laws that force them to do so.
    The value of a currency -its purchasing power is not fixed. It fluctuates and as Sam Peralta noted in the open thread that is a function of mass psychology. His point that that leads to a limit on how much the government can spend. During an existential war people are willing to expend all resources in fighting that war but in other circumstances they may not. Sovereign fiat currencies have collapsed in the past.

  77. different clue says:

    Babak Makkinejad,
    If you are correct, that would be a very interesting correction-addition for me to install into my knowledge base. It goes against the little I have read. I may just look it up.

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