What is the Agenda of the “No Agenda” Podcast?

While John C. Dvorak and Adam Curry claim that their “No Agenda” podcast doesn’t have a political agenda, all that you need to do is listen to the beginning of episode #623 – “Fact Pattern” – from June 5, 2014.

It is thirty-two solid minutes of what amounts to a Koch Brothers infomercial.

That’s all that you need to know about the show. If you are a knucklehead libertarian who wants to destroy the federal government and pave the way for direct rule by oligarchs, then you will love it.

People seeking actual knowledge should look elsewhere.

Would Jesus Work at Walmart?

Imagine that Jesus is living in Arkansas, working as a carpenter. He commands $50 per hour for his high-quality work, and life is good. But then, the big home-building companies bribe enough Congressmen to drastically increase the number of work visas, and a wave of Mexican carpenters flood into the state.

The Mexicans are good carpenters, but they are willing to work for minimum wage because they have starving children back home. Jesus could compete on price, but he has a mortgage payment and three kids in college. No matter how hard or how long he works, he is doomed financially. Would Jesus turn the other cheek, and meekly put in an application at the local Walmart?

Well, if he did, Jesus would fit right in because many Walmart stores are practically evangelical churches already, complete with feet-washing rituals.

Edward Gibbon, author of The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire thought that the adoption of Christianity weakened the Roman Empire. (See the relevant passage here.) Other scholars dispute Gibbon’s assertion. However, when you look at the masses of believers toiling away for less-than-subsistence wages to further enrich the insanely wealthy Walton family, you have to wonder whether Gibbon was onto something.

This is why I say that we Americans are a conquered people – we have meekly and passively accepted our descent into servitude.

Many Walmart workers even love their servitude, fancying themselves to be Jesus-like. However, according Reza Aslan’s new book Zealot: The Life and Times of Jesus of Nazareth, Jesus was actually crucified for being a revolutionary. So, maybe Jesus wouldn’t knuckle under to the Walton family after all.

Read more abut the economic role of evangelical Christianity in To Serve God and Wal-Mart: The Making of Christian Free Enterprise by Bethany Moreton. Here is a quote:

“For the emerging Wal-Mart constituency, faith in God and faith in the market grew in tandem, aided by…an organized, corporate-funded grassroots movement for Christian free enterprise. Ultimately, they helped shape American-led globalization itself.”

Indeed, using Christianity to control the masses goes all the way back to the founding of our nation. In George Washington: The Founding Father, historian Paul Johnson writes (page 10) about our first president:

“He was never indifferent to Christianity – quite the contrary: he saw it as an essential element of social control and good government – but his intellect and emotions inclined him more to…freemasonry…”

So, from the get-go, our leaders viewed Christianity as a means to control the masses. The more things change, the more they stay the same. Fascinating subject, no?

Carl Quintanilla is an Airhead

The “entitlements” meme is designed foremost to convince us that programs like Social Security are actually generous when in reality they are stingy. Some retirees can’t even afford running water and electricity. Others have a new Christmas ritual: roaming around like gypsies in RVs looking for work. And they end up being driven like sled dogs in America’s new sweat-warehouses.

At 2:10 into the video below, you can see CNBC airhead Carl Quintanilla lay on a thick coat of corporate happy-talk as he raves about the fabulous “mobility of the modern workforce”:

To get an idea of what it’s really like to work in these places, read: “I Was a Warehouse Wage Slave.”

Jane Wells is also in the video. Back in January, the Quintanilla/Wells duo teamed-up to have a chuckle over child slave labor. Nice, huh?

To read more about how stingy Social Security actually is, read: “The Fiscal Cliff is a Lie” by Michael Lind.

Yep, Still a Buffoon

In a column about China, Thomas L. Friedman wrote in the New York Times:

“To say China needs its own dream in no way excuses Americans or Europeans from redefining theirs. We all need to be rethinking how we sustain rising middle classes with rising incomes in a warming world, otherwise the convergence of warming, consuming and crowding will mean we grow ourselves to death.”

The man thinks that we have “rising middle classes” in the US and Europe, and that we are in danger of growing ourselves to death.

Can you imagine?

I wonder how many times that has ranked on Gallup’s “most important problem” poll. I’m guessing: never. Unless they called Friedman’s house.

“What do you think is the most important problem facing the country today?”
1) Unemployment
2) Economy
3) Federal Budget Deficit
4) Middle Class Growing Too Fast [Ha!]
5) Lack of Money

Everybody seems to agree that the American middle class is in deep trouble – except Friedman. And the guy included Europe! Has he seen Europe lately? You know, the land of perpetual austerity riots? Is there a “rising middle class” in Greece or Spain? And what about Italy where the people are going back to riding bicycles?

Friedman is worried that China’s middle class will grow too large. But can the parasite grow larger than the host? What will happen to China, India, and Mexico when the last good job is sucked out of the USA? Answer: they will crash and burn right along with us.

Friedman is a priest still preaching a discredited religion: globalism. He imagines himself a great prophet, spreading wealth all over the world. In reality, he is a fool preaching the modern equivalent that the world is flat, or that the Sun revolves around the Earth.

Perhaps the intellectuals who read the New York Times will stop lauding Friedman after the austerity riots begin here next year. Too bad it will take a disaster of that magnitude to see off this tired religion.

The CIA’s First War?

Update: since I posted this, the video in question has been taken down by 60 Minutes.

At the 2:53 mark of the video below, 60 Minutes reporter Lara Logan states about Afghanistan:

“The CIA was given the lead role in prosecuting a war for the first time in history.”

You would be hard-pressed to find a more-pure specimen of propaganda than that. In fact, it would be easier to make a list of the wars that the CIA did not lead.

Of course, there was the CIA “secret army” that invaded Cuba at the Bay of Pigs. Vietnam was a CIA project, and they leaked the Pentagon Papers to put the blame on the Department of Defense.

During the cold war, the CIA’s tentacles spread all throughout the military. And not just our military; many Royal Air Force bases in the UK were really disguised CIA bases. Some probably still are. My favorite CIA war was the attack on Indonesia in 1958. You probably never heard of that one, right?

If the Taliban returns to power after we leave Afghanistan, there will be a scramble to assign the blame. And it looks like the CIA, with the help of 60 Minutes, has begun a covert CYA operation. Note in the video how Crumpton gets in a dig against the DoD for not letting him get the Osama bin Laden collar.

CNBC Banned Words

Yesterday’s shameless whitewashing of the Apple sweatshop story made plain what CNBC really is: an infomercial for multinationals.

Banned words:
Global labor arbitrage
Sweatshop wages
Project Lean
Giant sucking sound
Record immigration
Food stamps

Sometimes these subjects are brought up by guests on CNBC. But then Larry Kudlow immediately begins to shout and changes the subject – just doing his job protecting the romanticized “Gone With the Wind” version of the global economy – putting a happy face on the destruction of the American middle class.

If you pay attention, you will see that whenever the subject of sweatshop wages comes up in the mainstream media, no actual wage numbers will be mentioned. For example, one of the staples of propaganda is the story that goes: “Oh my god! Oh my god! Wages have soared 20% in China! Companies are moving plants back to the USA!” But they never tell you that those wages have gone from $1 per hour to $1.20 per hour. Right? Because if they did that, then people like me would start doing some calculations. See this WSJ article as an example.

Keep up the good work CNBC! America will be in ruins any day now!

Isaacson Omits China Issue from Steve Jobs Biography

A lot has been said about Walter Isaacson’s biography of Steve Jobs, but I haven’t seen anybody mention the lack of discussion on China. If you have the e-book, and you search on China, you will find almost nothing.

Of course, this is typical of Big Media’s approach to offshoring: pretend it doesn’t exist. Propaganda by omission.

Perhaps Isaacson didn’t think it was an important topic. After all, it was a biography of Steve Jobs, and not a history of Apple Computer. But I don’t think that was the case because the book covers the factories that Jobs used to build in Silicon Valley. Isaacson discusses the high-tech plant that Jobs built while at NeXT right down to the $20,000 chairs that Jobs furnished it with.

But there was no discussion at all about the factories in China, or what Jobs thought about them. And it’s not for a lack of an interesting topic. I mean workers were leaping to their deaths in those sweatshops, right? How is that not a story?

And I am not exaggerating about this being propaganda. Big Media is so assiduous about hiding the scale of offshoring that it brainwashes the members of the Council on Foreign Relations itself! When the iPad was introduced, CFR member Erin Burnett thought that it would be a fabulous addition to the USA’s exports. She had no clue that Apple had 700,000 workers in China. See the Burnett video here.

On a related topic, we read stories blaming unemployment on automation. The robots are taking our jobs, right? It’s got nothing to do with offshoring. But consider this quote from the book about the NeXT factory:

“Empty circuit boards were fed in at one end and twenty minutes later, untouched by humans, came out the other end as completed boards.”

That’s right; Steve Jobs had an automated assembly line in Fremont, California 25 years ago! So is it really automation that explains the loss of manufacturing jobs? Or is it cheap sweatshop workers (who undercut expensive robots) and an artificially weak yuan? The truth is that the “Automation Explanation” is just another propaganda campaign to keep the American middle class quiescent as it is being eviscerated.

Note: Nerds have complained about the lack of technology coverage in Isaacson’s book, but the vast majority of people will enjoy it. I liked it, and recommend it.

Blatant Immigration Propaganda from CNN

While discussing the record-breaking level of immigration into the USA in my last post, I said that it was a deliberate campaign to beat down wages for American workers.

Maybe you thought that I was engaging in hyperbole?

Well, guess again.

Take a look at this specimen of corporate propaganda published by CNN (click picture to enlarge):

The statement:

“Ellis Island has put up a velvet rope line. To vital job generators, we are saying, “There’s no room for you.”

…is a direct contradiction of the official statistics published by the Department of Homeland Security. We are living in the highest-immigration period in American history.

Did this “journalist” and the fact-checkers and editors at this “news” organization even look at the stats? Clearly, not.

Now, I don’t mean to single out Wilkinson or even CNN. I just happened to come across this story shortly after I published the immigration charts. As a matter of fact, if you keep your eyes open, you will see this same “story” throughout the media – from left-wing CNN to right-wing CNBC. From Democrat Mort Zuckerman to Republicans Larry Kudlow and Donald Trump.

But what about the argument? Is it true that we need genius immigrants to come here and create jobs for all of us lazy, stupid, uneducated, unmotivated Americans? Clearly not. Over the last ten years, we have brought in 10.5 million legal immigrants, and during that time poverty has exploded across America. We have over 13 million people unemployed, and 45 million on food-stamps.

In other words, the “immigrants will save us” policy HAS ALREADY FAILED!

Rather spectacularly at that.