Video is here and lasts almost 2½ hours. Notes, bold added (AC is Alex Christoforu, AM is Alexander Mercouris, RB is Robert Barnes).
Even if you despise Alex Jones and Donald Trump, you should be concerned about the far-reaching implications of what has transpired in both cases becaise it has relevance beyond Americans' Constitutional guarantees. It behooves us to understand how exactly we got to this place, domestically and internationally, and this discussion highlights some things we need to consider.
AM: Interesting times. Thought FBI raid was related to Jan 6th events; no, about some documents he took with him from the WH. 30 agents showing up, it's beyond bizarre. As Talleyrand said about something Napoleon did, this is worse than a crime, it's a mistake.
Because it's solidified the Republican party and conservative public behind Trump. It's convinced people who don't even like Trump that he's being harassed by the Deep State. What is esp. appalling is what it's doing to the institutions of the US, the FBI and DOJ. being used as weapons against political enemies. It will make more and more Americans distrust these institutions.
RB: Aug. 8, 2022 will live in institutional infamy for the justice department. For those outside the US, no former US president has EVER been raided by law enforcement. Raided for something that was related to the presidency and against someone who is the leading opponent in the upcoming presidential elections. A weaponization of the FBI, the DOJ and the federal courts that has never been done in the US before.
Everything they've accused Trump of, they've done - breaking customs, breaking norms, breaking precedence. Biden administration has been doing it across the country, reinstating a range of politically motivated prosecutions and persecutions as FBI whistleblowers have been disclosing. Date is significant because of DOJ rule not to initiate any such actions against a political party within 90 days leading up to an election; yesterday was 91 days.
I think it's a Deep State raid complicit with the Dem Party but not initiated by them; it's most likely a Deep State raid. More and more evidence pointing in that direction. It appears Trump has some files they don't want him to have. Whatever is in them is so sensitive to people in power that they'd risk massive political blowback from an unprecedented raid rather than letting him have physical possession of those records.
In the US the president gets to keep those records. There's a period when the National Archives has them but they're returned to him for the Presidential Library. Every president in the past has kept these records, often refusing to turn them over, but never was escalating this to criminal action or even civil subpoena action ever considered.
Trump, under extortionate threats from McConnell and others, chose not to pardon Assange or Snowden or declassify documents covering a range of topics, including those on the JFK assassination, which were supposed to have been declassified years ago, and information related to Russiagate. It may go beyond that but it's information that may be embarrassing to the DOJ and the FBI, the CIA, NSA, etc. in the Russiagate/spygate scandal. Trump may have chosen for his own protection to keep certain records for himself that he did not want to see distroyed.
The only reason to do a raid to seize those records - I'm not convinced is so the National Archives can make sure it has the right copy - more likely there's something there that's embarrassing, that's independent evidentiary proof that they didn't want anyone else to see (so probably got the warrant by saying they had basis to believe Trump was going to share it with someone).
Reportedly Trump got this from allies, which usually means the office of the Director of National Intelligence (was Richard Grinell), he wanted to disclose things about China and other things involving Trump; there might be information that would be embarrassing to the US right now on China policy. Trump has been highly publicly critical of Pelosi's trip and the Biden administration escalating tensions - the only American to be highly critical of it in such a high ranking position.
My guess it's Deep State files that Trump was keeping as insurance against indictments or assassination risk. Biggest parallel I remember where people at level of potential president or president in open war with the Deep State is the Kennedy brothers and both of them were killed. The parallel: Trump planning to run in 2024 and talking about payback - Axios had a piece a month ago that Trump and allies were coming up with a plan to purge operatives in the Deep State apparatus - comparable to Bobby Kennedy saying he planned to reopen the investigation into his brother's assasination a week before he was assassinated. And of course JFK was assassinated, many believe by the Deep State not Lee Harvey Oswald, lone gunman, secret Soviet-Cuba supporter.
The National Archives saying you gotta raid Trump's house to make sure we have the right papers, that this is about the Presidential Records Act - that rationale is not going to fly with the American people. A little caveat at the end of the day - they didn't quite find what they were looking for so they brought a safecracker in to crack Trump's safe but it was empty.
But a dangerous day for America that I think shows desperation by the Deep State operatives that are falling apart; Afghanistan, Ukraine, China-Taiwan is a disaster - as Col. Douglas McGregor pointed out, we ain't going into China, it's not happening. The only thing is possibly the Curtis LeMay idea of seeing how nuclear weapons might work - which was the military's idea for China in the 1950s in case people didn't know.
Now they have Trump surging, his party surging, a populist wing of the party. Joe Kent, former intelligence guy, his wife was killed because of a rogue operation in Syria, people tend not to forget that sort of thing. He's going to be in Congress and will be one of the principal Deep State critics, coming from an informed base.
But what we saw with this raid is terrifying if you care about Constitutional democracy. They set a precedent unparalleled in US history, on the thinnest and weakest possible grounds legally and Constitutionally; and it has angered millions of Americans who are now saying we need a real Church committee, a Jim Garrison-style investigation to investigate the Deep State when Trump comes in. We have major Congressmen calling for the dismantling of the FBI - this was J Edgar Hoover's abortion of an investigation agency that he created and it's long overdue to be gutted if not completely stripped of its power.
So hopefully this will be a turning point against the Deep State corruption of democracy but at any rate will be a memorable date in legal history.
AM: I think what you are describing is worse than a Deep State, which exists within American institutions. This is more of a state within the state, a group of people using the institutions of the US in effect against the US.
Going back to the 1960s assassinations, assuming that it was the Deep State, the key point to understand is that it was done covertly. It wasn't done by the FBI conducting a public raid on a former president's residence. It's something that doesn't happen in a rules-based, law-based, Constitutionally founded system. So Americans have a right to be outraged.
Nearest approximation is in the 1640s, Charles I coming to the House of Commons with an armed posse to arrest some of the members because he didn't like the questions and investigations they were launching. And that provoked a civil war. Not saying that's where this will lead in the US but that it will provoke an enormous political crisis.
Not talking about a Deep State anymore, we're talking about a state within the state, what in Britain used to be called "an overmighty subject", a group of people who operate beyond the Constitution, beyond the accepted laws of the country, but people who consider themselves above those laws and more powerful than the Constitutional system.
RB: it's a nation of corrupt men rather than a nation of honest law. The Charles I episode you mention and others is part of the reason there are speech and immunity protections in our Constitution for members of Congress; can't be arrested or sued for what they say on the House or Senate floor. Presidential immunity from lawsuits and criminal investigation during their presidency. If you look at the few examples that happened in other countries - Chirac in France and Netayahu in Israel - it was low level prosecutors holding them up while they were in power, not them going after political opponents using the most powerful federal agency. The only place you see these kind of show trials is in fascist, communist, totalitarian nations. We'll get to one against a very prominent critic of the Deep State and surveillance state and MIC, Alex Jones, the canary in the coal mine for the weaponization of the legal system. Right after they get away with his trial, suddenly they do this to Trump.
Then we have the federal magistrate who signed the warrant. I've always had a problem with the way we do search warrants in the US procedurally; Constitutionally, we have robust protection, good rules under the federal rules for criminal procedure, etc. The reason why the judiciary doesn't act as an effective gatekeeper of core liberties and rights, as reflected in the Alex Jones kangaroo proceedings, is because of their own incapacity to meaningfully utilize their tasks, obligations and duties to protect liberty; they protect power more often than they protect liberty.
Here a federal magistrate is the only one who reviewed the warrants - which I've always opposed, federal magistrates don't go through the approval process in the Senate, they're effectively hired by the local judiciary - they're usually political hacks and mediocre minds; as a magistrate you're only there for 10 years, you want to be reappointed or bounced up to the district court or get bonus points in the corporate legal world. That gives you no incentive to go after or second guess those in power like any of the law enforcement agencies.
In a highly politically sensitive case like this the AG (Garland) has to sign off on it; ditto Christopher Wray, FBI director and a lot of other high ranking people. We're seeing similar to what we saw with the Russiagate FISA warrants - "there must be something there, otherwise all these high ranking people wouldn't have signed off on it".
This particular magistrate was the longtime private lawyer for Epstein who, according to some reports, was outed by Trump which led to his initial investigation. What are the chances?
According to the law, which they didn't comply with, you're supposed to resort to compliance, subpoenas, go through all those protocols and procedures and it's not clear to me that they did.
So a scary day for the rule of law but hopefully will be a wakeup for the institutional conservatives that it's time to purge the Deep State of its pernicious power. As you note, it's become a state of its own, a state that's co-opted the American democracy for its own pernicious purposes. It might explain in part why we're in so many insane places around the world risking global war with both nuclear powers. We have a Deep State that has staged a coup over the Constitutional American democracy to such a degree that they can get federal judges and federal institutions to do their bidding against the law and against the will of the American people.
AM: the whole thing speaks of desperation. Think you're right there could be time bombs in the papers but can't help but think the desperation is from realizing that Trump may be back and stronger than he was before with a much better team behind him. And might start doing some of the things he should have done when he was president. Desperate people do increasingly reckless things and this looks extremely reckless.
Again reminds me of Charles I, who felt his position was weakening, his power was crumbling and thought he could launch a decisive strike against his enemies which instead made the whole thing fall apart. And that's how this situation is looking to me.
RB: absolutely. Super chat question, does it feel like what it was in the 1960s? In 1962 Americans overwhelmingly believed in American institutions and power - medical, media, political, law enforcement (FBI), military, Congress. After the four assassinations over mid- to late 1960s, that collapsed, and the final collapse was with the removal of Nixon.
That all led to the Church committee, led to House committee on assassinations, exposure of MK Ultra and coups around the world, CoIntelPro, led to the FOIA act and the privacy act - led to institutional reforms and evidentiary hearings that are why we know as much as we do about the Deep State.
Deep Throat was the head of CoIntelPro at the FBI who was supposed to succeed to the head of the FBI after Hoover, and he acted not out of some honorable goals, he was a Deep State hack trying to get rid of a president who didn't give him the appointment he expected. That's how bad it had gotten. But at least that was all covert and hidden, it's a shocking sign when it shifts to open and overt, it's an assertion of raw power in the name of the law that the law is supposed to prevent from happening.
Marc Elias, big Dem hitman-lawyer who ran a lot of the election litigation that led to the election fornication of 2020 - more or less saying, hey we can use this law to keep Trump from ever being elected again - but that's a misreading of the law. There is a federal law that says willfully, intentionally, criminally stealing what you don't have a right to is a prosecutable federal crime and if convicted you can't be an officer of the US government. But this doesn't apply to the elected offices because the Constitution is, as the Supreme Court has already adjudicated, "the exclusive means for determining both qualifications and holding office." Congress, state legislators, state governors can't add to that, Natural born citizen of the US and at least 35, that's it. The only way to intervene is with the impeachment and removal process, which in my view requires a 2/3 vote of the Senate which they never obtain in the first round.
Trump could run for president from prison, as Eugene Debs did. So they can't stop him from that barring a health problem or him dying.
A lot of people close to Trump - we were part of the team that wrote the memo to Trump about pardoning Assange and (secondarily) Snowden (because Trump had mixed feelings on Snowden). We all believed he would; then he didn't, and he didn't de-classify stuff as promised, he was really committed to that.
One explanation for the not declassifying was because Trump was holding that information for himself, as insurance; and that he has it secured in independent documentary form in multiple people,in case anything should happen to him. And everyone knows if they actively indict him, then he can publicly disclose the contents.
So the raid may be that they don't want to indict him unless they know he doesn't have this documentary independent proof he could use in his defense, to expose something bad about them in formalized legal proceedings. Whatever it is, it must be awfully damning to do an unparalleled raid this way on an ex-president of the US.
Luckily there's been big political and public blowback. Coming on top of the Alex Jones show trial, where it's not about a school shooting, it's saying if you question institutional narratives, advance so-called conspiracy theories, you should be able to be sued into bankruptcy and oblivion, financially punished to where you can't speak anymore. Makes it doubly disconcerting for those of us who care about civil rights and civil liberties in America.
AM: I think Marc Elias needs to be extremely careful what he says. One, he's wrong. Two, it completely exposes what this is partly about. Not saying this is the motivation of the people who ordered the raid but from the perspective of the public give the impressions that the Dems were behind it, that they're not interested if he committed any crimes or his transgression, they just want to keep him from running and that is not what the law should be used for.
So they damage not only the institutions of the US by making them look like political tools of the Dems, it will damage the Dems when people say they can't beat Trump fairly so they have to use their power to cheat.
And the fact that Marc Elias says this suggests that he is no longer loyal to the law. If he were, he would be opposing it, saying why it was wrong.
Re Alex Jones - AM tells about 20-30 years ago in UK, a historian named Tolstoy and an actual member of that family - wrote a book about a former minister of the British government whom he said colluded with the Soviets to have the Cossacks who fought for the Germans repatriated to the Soviet Union where Stalin had them all executed.
He was sued for defamation by the minister, who won, awarded something like £1 mn. Huge legal battle, went all the way to the European Court of Human Rights, which quashed the award; said the award was disproportionate and excessive, that its purpose was not to compensate the minister but to silence the historian and was therefore an infringement on free speech.
So with Alex Jones, a $45 mn award. How can that be seen as anything but an attempt to silence him? Article in The Guardian reporting some of the things the judge said to Alex Jones; the judge was basically calling him a liar even after Jones said he never said anything he did not believe to be true. Seems incredibly prejudicial, and why is a judge making a comment like that anyway?
RB: the significance of the case: Media spin is that it's about Alex Jones and Sandy Hook, compliance w/ the law, itc. That's mostly inaccurate. Don't have to guess the motives of the plaintiffs, their lawyer laid it out in the damages phase of the case - BTW Alex Jones wasn't able to defend himself in that part either, wasn't allowed to present any evidence or witnesses. Plaintiff's lawyers told the jury, "Here's what you're here to do. Take. him. out." Explained by paraphrasing: "Issue a verdict that will not only take him off the air now, but will not allow him or like him ever to be on the air again." Jurors were allowed to ask questions (very unusual, but the judge okayed it) and were asking whether this could be used against people who deny elections. Media was saying could it be used against people who raise questions about vaccines, or "lie" about foreign governments. We can all see where this is headed.
If there was a right to be violated or a rule to be eviscerated, it was in the Alex Jones case. It made a complete mockery of the idea of judicial neutrality (names them off - due process, freedom of speech, right to counsel, right to confront witnesses, right to trial by jury). The judge was openly partisan, everything actually scripted for a movie that was being made in the courtroom - "Leaving Neverland" production crew making a movie about the trial which makes them legally immune as long as the judge made sure the trial went to script. He can't present evidence, they can present inflammatory evidence that's not relevant and the movie company can't be sued by Alex Jones even if it's complete liable because they're just documenting what appeared in court.
Stepping back - why Alex Jones? what distinguished AJ was not raising questions about school shootings; it's that he's the most significant, populist voice in America and definitely the most significant voice on the Right, that challenged the 1st and 2nd Iraq wars; warsin Syria, Libya and Afghanistan; challenged Trump on bombing Syria and other foreign policy decisions; #1 defender on the right for Assange and Snowden; #1 voice on the Right critical of the national security state, the lockdowns, masks, mandates; #1 critic of the Deep State writ large. He's had more success getting that message shared among Americans than anyone in American history. He's the equivalent today to what Thomas Paine was during the Revolution. That's why they're targeting Alex Jones.
Most of what they said about him on Sandy Hook wasn't true, that's why they could not let him produce evidence; 99% of his statements were saying Sandy Hook happened. The others were raising related questions about pharma and SSRI drugs that so many of the young men are taking when they commit these horrible crimes; the inadequacy of American medical care and psychological care over the past 20 years; the inadequacy of school safety measures (Sandy Hook didn't have means to lock the doors, to lock themselves in with the kids, an issue that came up again in Uvalde - the politicians had to hide that fact at Sandy Hook as it had been a state requirement since Columbine). They destroyed evidence along the way that led to suspicions among the public and led them in the completely wrong direction.
AJ admitted he made mistakes about Sandy Hook, he'd gotten things wrong; but he never mentioned any of the parents by name. And in the US, under the NYT vs. Sullivan decision, "Constitutional requirement of colloquium", you can only sue if someone states a significantly false fact - can't be a non-factual opinion - about a specifically identified individual. If you don't name the person or show a visual, it has to be a small enough group that it's known to be you - the "rule of 25". Know this well because I represented a bunch of hte Covington kids who had been identified by images, but we had to satisfy the threshhold to even bring suit.
51:51 BTW, Nicholas Sammons case was thrown out of court under standards that would never have allowed the AJ case go to trial. So we're seeing wild disparity, which is another problem with the Trump raid. You can't let Hunter Biden run around committing crimes in every state he's in and then go after the ex-president because you're not sure the national archives have the right records.
So the Constitutional requirement of colloquium says they didn't have a case against AJ to begin with. Then you see that most of the things Infowars has said are not what they're complaining about, which also gutted their case. And then that AJ make his reputation and fortune from these occasional discussions of Sandy Hook.
They had to gut the 1st amendment, make up rules about Discovery, make up facts about the case, deny him the ability to present evidence in his own defense because they knew that the great American legal process, that's adversarial, where everybody gets their day in court, where both sides are fully heard - they couldn't allow this to happen even before a liberal Democratic authoritarian jury pool like in Austin, which would not have come back with such a huge award if they ruled against him at all.
When we tested it over 1/2 American juries were ruling in AJ's favor when they heard the actual facts - that the plaintiffs had not timely filed a "Notice for request of correction, retraction, or apology". He wasn't allowed to present evidence he had apologized, or that he was innocent, or didn't say the things they were accusing him of, that he'd lost money on all of this OR to present evidence of all the times AJ was right.
They made one mistake - the plaintiff's lawyer said "you believe there's a sex trafficking ring out there involving politicans, don't you?" and AJ said "you mean Jeffrey Epstein and the Clintons?"
Allowed in evidence that had no relevance - even a clip of me talking about the trial being scripted, took out a 5-second part of it, wouldn't play before or after that bit, even though the evidentiary rules of completeness require that and even though my statements were totally irrelevant. The worst joke of a kangaroo court I've ever witnessed.
But the scariest thing is they want to use it as a precedent on two levels: a precedent to suppress dissident speech in America; and a precedent that they can eviscerate the rule of law and no one will do anything about it as long as their target is controversial enough. As a chat comment said, what happened to Trump can happen to you, what happened to Alex Jones WILL happen to you.
AM: question about where the award came from, something the jury came up with?
RB: the jury by request of plaintiff's atty. Another legal violation took place in the jury selection; the jurors were asked a question that is completely impermissible in any court I've ever been in - would they commit before hearing the evidence to awarding $100 mn just for emotional injury and if you said no you were excluded from the jury. This size verdict has never happened in our history for a claim like this. The second required premise Q was you had to believe the media had never said anything false about AJ in his history. Guy's been libeled almost as much as Trump. They wanted $150 mn per person, there were other people suing in Connecticut and Texas in cases to come so they wanted over $1 bn, and they explained why - to shut him down.
Pltff's atty in press conference after trial compared him to a corpse that they were going to cut up and cannibalize. He also bragged in court about fact that AJ's attorney accidentally shared records with the Pltff's atty - happens all the time, lawyers know they're supposed to destroy, return, etc. due to atty-client privilege which only the client can waive, the atty can't intentionally or accidentally. These were private communications, pictures of AJ's wife, that sort of thing, and this attorney is sharing them with others.
They want to take him out and all the rest of us are next. Just like they took him out of social media in Aug 2018; then they went for DJT. Now they do a joke conservative court with conservative constitutional judges keeping their mouths shut about or even praising this wrongful persecution of AJ.
You can hate AJ but you should be concerned about what this means about the disrespect and disregard for the rule of law, the Constitutional rights, esp free speech in this space. It's why Glenn Greenwald came down for the new documentary, Alex's War, Kim Iverson saying this is a threat to all independent speech; and why a lot of people who oppose AJ's opinions coming out to say that this is an outrage. A lot of institutional types are just buying the media narrative.
RB talked about the courts in Connecticut allowing the parents to sue the gun manufacturers, which is illegal, and they got a $77 mn award.
Someone was spamming AJ's shows, trying to plant illicit materials on his computers by sending them in emails. But they never opened the emails. In Discovery - and AJ and InfoWars sat for more depositions and turned over more documents than in any comparable case I've ever heard of. They turned over everything, even these junk emails.
They've made Alex Jones exceptions to all the legal requirements, and once you carve out an exception for one it can be used against the many, not only to speech but to our right to have our day in court.
AM: what you're talking about are core legal protections with histories that extend back to before the US Constitution. They're part of the actual creation of law. The earliest client-attorney privilege case goes back to the 16th century in English courts during Elizabeth I's reign and the judges spoke of it then as something that had existed since time immemorial.
So they're not just throwing out the law in the US but the whole concept of law as it exists in any civilized country. Presumably he's going to appeal, where would he appeal to?
RB: different cases, different places so different appeal processes. And there's now a federal bankruptcy court involved. He's facing another case before this judge in TX; facing a case in Connecticut - not just parents suing but the FBI guy suing for trauma from AJ second-guessing how the FBI handled the case. That's how crazy these cases are.
The current TX case, the judgment is stayed pending the bankruptcy. Under TX punitive damages law they have to bring that $45 mn down to about $1-1/2 mn (or $5-6 mn?). It will go to TX Court of Appeals but TX divides this so much that Austin has it's own, all the judges are elected liberal Democrats. They're the ones issuing one crazy decision after another in the early stages of the case, changing definition of defamation, changing the Constitutional requirement of colloquium; changing the definition of intentional infliction of emotional distress, so you can intend to inflict emotional distress on someone you didn't even know and someone can suffer emotional distress when they never even heard you say what they're suing over; statute of limitations, thrown out; punitive damages notice requirements, thrown out; apology rights, thrown out.
So prospects there aren't real favorable but has better prospects with the TX Supreme Court. They almost took it up at the very beginning, just needed one more judge to agree with it, and they would have gutted the whole case. If they do take it, they'll reverse on everything, they could do it just on the Constitutional requirement of colloquium alone.
But yes, there are very unique federal Constitutional issues implicated in this so the US Supreme Court could and should take the case if no one else does. Lots of legal issues and precedents. It's somewhat complicated by the bankruptcy court part.
AM: made point that courts exist to uphold rights, not to extinguish them. If courts and judges don't understand that, then they're no longer courts.
RB: I don't think the timing is coincidental, they're trying to take out AJ on the eve of whatever they're planning this Fall. We saw their plans fall apart in Afghanistan and now Ukraine (he talked about the people who ended up on Ukraine's blacklist).
Forgot until I watched movie Lord of War that they actually had an inside version of Zelensky doing a map of Ukraine. The movie is loosely about Victor Bout, guy being considered for exchange with Brittany Griner. In the movie his brother gets hooked on cocaine and does a whole map of Ukraine with cocaine - that's basically Zelensky every night in Kiev.
They're clearly up to stuff and things are falling apart for them. So they're lashing out on AJ and DJT. A lot of (right) populists running or serving as governors.
Amnesty International finally does a little bit of honesty with its Ukraine report and got so much blowback they issued an apology. In Ukraine, the human trafficking, arms trafficking, money laundering, massive corruption the West is slowly starting to admit it. My guess is partially this is a Deep State divide we talked about last time, and part of it being the side that wants the war to continue looking for who to make the scapegoat.
Can't be because our weapons failed, would hurt the MIC business. Can't be NATO strategy, makes it look like an empty tiger. Can't blame the trainers or de facto commanders on the ground in L'viv. It's gotta be that Ukraine and Zelensky were just too corrupt.
AM: comparing Ukraine's blacklist to what would have happened in the 1960s if South Vietnam had one with MLK and Senator Fullbright and Walter Cronkite on it. The meh reaction to the Ukraine blacklist shows how much the US has changed. Re Thomas Paine, people who think AJ goes a bit far sometimes should read how far Thomas Paine went - and he's considered one of the Founders.
On to situation in Ukraine: agree they're starting to realize they have a debacle on their hands and are distancing themselves from it (more so in the US than in the UK). Think there's concern now in UK that when it goes wrong, as it will, it won't just be Zelensky that gets the blame but the UK will as well, that a lot of the bad advice to Zelensky came from Britain.
RB: on China; China plays differently domestically than Russia does, at least on the right. You have anti-Communists, and evangelicals and other spiritual groups with religious opposition to the CCP; populists who don't want the Chinese social credit system or method of governance extended here. But the Trumpian position is mostly about trade policy and how China impacts America and we want to minimize that adverse impact, there's no interest in regulating in their internal affairs or get in a war with them.
He wanted to leverage China for a peace deal with North Korea, would have happened but the appointment of John Bolton blew that up on the eve of it happening. Otherwise Trump's focus was economic control and issues that directly impacted like intellectual property rights, etc. Mainly economics - job shifting from the rust belt of the US to China, that was his obsession.
Neocons - one of first books about the Deep State in the modern era was about how the neocon interests in DC wanted to go to war with China, written in 2014. MIC goes all the way back to WWII - McArthur and LeMay, a bunch of generals believed in nuclear war. Operation Northwoods was signed off by the Joint Chiefs of Staff, about using false flags. They proposed nuking China twice to Eisenhower.
You have people who think we could win a "limited" nuclear war with Russia. You see all this stuff denigrating the Chinese military, I don't know, maybe it's true but it sounds an awful lot like what they said about the Russian military. But you have people in the military apparatus who really believe that about China, think we can win a war with them and want to prove it.
W/the neoliberals - what's confusing to people on the right is the degree of collusion with various members of the CCP all the way back to the Clinton administration, that leads some people to think Pelosi was just a feint, a fake story to hide the fact that she and the Biden administration and the neoliberals are in the pockets of the Chinese.
And it's based on one false premise. Globalists don't see themselves working for the Chinese, they see the CCP as working for their agenda, and will be happy to dispatch them the moment they believe they aren't. Lots of evidence of corruption involving China and the Dem Party and neoliberal establishments including think tanks and academies, corporate properties, major Wall Street investments (like Blackrock is heavily leveraged in China), like Pelosi and the Bidens. But they see China as their factory worker; they thought Xi was getting out of line for the last several years, just listen to Soros, he's been calling for regime change there for several years. They're happy as long as China keeps their head down, makes a lot of money for Western corporate nterests, continues to serve dollar dominance, gets to experiment on its population like with the social credit system in ways they'd like to experiment with in the West. What they're not interested in is an independent China that sees its own interests as sovereign and superior to globalist interests.
And that's why the risk of conflict is real and Pelosi is doing what she's doing. I think you guys nailed it - they think the world is the 1990s and really didn't think China would escalate to doing war games around Taiwan.
If you look at civilizations across thousands of years, you know the risks of governments collapsing and falling is more often from their incompetence than from their malevolence. We're seeing the risk of it in real time in the West.
AM: back in 1980s, 90s and 2000s lots of people who thought the US was actually using China and they were saying to themselves that they could make a lot of money from it. We can cultivate the Chinese but ultimately we're the masters here. And the Chinese took a lot of these people for a ride - those people did do well, made lots of money out of it but it's too simplistic to say that because they were taking money from the Chinese they were their agents.
There was concern in Europe about Chimerica - China and America merging together into this huge economic complex, the US owning vast areas of the Chinese economy. Of course the CCP had its own ideas and that's where things began to break down.
You're right about DJT's overwhelming concerns being about the US and the American people, the kind of jobs they have and economy. Not about getting in quarrels where the US has no interest, and should pick its quarrels carefully.
This is about starting a quarrel with China over Taiwan, which until recently had been stable. And now neocons trying to make it an issue; you get the feeling they're not really interested in Taiwan or concerned about the people, they just want to use them to start this new trouble with China. They underestimate China's military and war capabilities just as they underestimated Russia's.
RB: great breakdown by Col. McGregor, think it was on Jackson Hinkle's show. He also explained something well you've ponted out, two factors could play into it from China's perspective: 1) Xi looking at getting reappointed for a term, practically for life; and 2) real estate and financial issues in China and going in and taking back Taiwan could be a userful distraction, especially triggered by this Pelosi stunt.
Per McGregor, almost all China's military defense prioritization has been avoiding what happened to them in the 1800s and 1900s, having their country taken apart culturally and geographically because of being unable to protect themselves from a foreign invader. So this is a lot about defending against foreign influence, the West using Taiwan to attack and undermine China's independence and sovereignty.
Lot of debate about how serious the internal economic dynamics are. We can't get honest information out of the West anymore and you're not going to get a lot of robust information out of China.