Yesterday morning, I took to Twitter to disagree with journalist Tim Pool about one of his takes on the war in Ukraine.
Tim alleged that because a German translator broke down while translating a speech by President Zelensky - and because the media subsequently reported on it - that it those watching the media were “being played”.
“They are manipulating your emotions to get you to support war,” Pool wrote, suggesting the media had an agenda to lead us into World War III.
I love a nice conspiracy and am a big fan of Tim’s. I listen to his podcast and love seeing him on Joe Rogan - and I usually agree with most of what he says. But I pushed back on this, offering up my take that “not everything is a conspiracy by the media”.
Following this comment to Pool, my good friend George Gammon weighed in with his take. George took Tim’s side and wrote that he thought the “cancel culture” toward Russians was trying to get us emotionally geared up for World War III, ostensibly so the elites could engage in another power grab and edge us one step closer to “The Great Reset”.
George argued that “cancelling” Russian citizens and products was a slippery slope that would eventually end with consequences far greater than we intended.
My readers and listeners know I am always up for a nice round of bash the shit out of the media, but I usually like to have a reason. I wasn’t seeing what George and Tim were, so I responded to George:
Cancel culture? This isn't some 19 year old trans activist protesting b/c someone used the wrong pronoun. It's the modern civilized Western world cutting off Russia for its unprovoked invasion of a sovereign nation & killing innocents. I don't think the media is painting the Russian *people* as enemies. In fact, all I see are reports on how they object to the war & are being misled. The media is critical of Putin, who is unilaterally waging this war. I'm not seeing media rooting for WWIII much - in fact, I see pleas for peace.
I finally wrote that there was “no perfect solution” for the situation and asked George to talk about the issue with me on a podcast - which is exactly what we did yesterday evening.
Here is the video of the discussion, which lasted about an hour:
You need not watch it if you read our Tweets, but I think the dialogue was decent enough to flesh out the issue a bit. George’s stance is slightly different than Tim’s “hot take” and we were able to agree on some things. In fact, in principle, I agree with what George is cautious about - I just don’t think our actions, or the media, have stepped too far over “the line” just yet.
Most importantly, I was glad we could have a civil discussion to hash out the issue.
On George’s channel, almost all of the comments stated that I was wrong in my thinking. I’m fine with this (it’s definitely not the first time, eh?), but was interested to hear what my readers thought as well.
So I thought I would pose the questions:
Do you think sanctions are a slippery slope to Japanese style internment camps, like George suggests?
Do you think the world is engaging in “cancel culture” with Russia or just making calculated decisions to try and put pressure on the country/its economy?
Do you think the media is reporting this story accurately so far, or have they ventured into hysterical, as George suggests?
Should we continue with sanctions, but just do more or less?
What is the best way to de-escalate the situation with Russia? Let it play out, or continue to sanction/take other action?
Do you think the war could be pre-meditated and used by global elites to usurp power, as George suggests?
What do you think the ideal solution is for the U.S. and the world to deal with Russia right now, if any?
I’d love to hear your comments on the issue.
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Russian cats have been banned from competition by the International cat Federation according to the WSJ. With idiocy like this, it's hard not to see some validity with the slippery slope view. What worries me is how accepting of the MSM narrative most 'normal' folk are. There's a grain of truth that can be exploited to weaponise public perception and action. I think that's why I can sympathize with the Ukrainians but also have concern for how easily people unquestioningly accept what's fed to them. In short, yes it's a cancel culture of sorts. Check out the Stan Grant footage from Australian Q&A this week. I don't agree with the Russian student's position but it's clear that he's not even allowed to ask questions that don't align with the prevailing narrative. I think we'll see more of this and I worry about where it leads.
I think there’s an explanation for why three very intelligent people are perceiving this differently, and yet none of you are exactly wrong. So I think what’s happening here is more a case of the classic “don’t let a good crisis go to waste” situation. Your point of view is correct in that there’s a very real, very barbaric war happening. People are being made to suffer and die to appease the will of a small group of Russians. We should help Ukraine however we can, including punishing said people. However, Tim and Georges alarm bells are going off because there is propaganda off the charts. There’s video game footage being passed off as a hero ace pilot, a cool sounding island where the imagined extras from 300 make their stand(only they didn’t and they’re all fine), people who are actively trying to take away your 2nd amendment here are cheering on these poor people over there banging it out in the streets with grandpas old pigeon rifle. Just last night we were supposed to think they were actively trying to blow up a reactor as some sort of dirty bomb, when it was just incompetent morons battling it out where they shouldn’t have been(which was actually quite far from the reactor itself, but still scary). It’s very real but they are trying to take it and shape it and use if for their own gross gain. It’s like the rest of wokeism -there’s always a core we all agree on -racism is bad, you can’t rape women, people can identity as cats if they want, but then they always have to take it and make it weird -strip out all nuance, amplify it, make you swear allegiance or they use it on you to destroy you. Case in point we’re- “taking their yachts!”- but still buying oil and gas so Europe doesn’t freeze, or worse, have to answer politically inconvenient question of how we got here. Putin used NATO encroachment as a pretext for savageness-but we wouldn’t have been cool with it either (Cuba). Zelensky is rising to the call as leader, but was a corrupt figure a month ago. You can’t say any of these things without being called a Russian sympathizer or anti Ukraine. As soon as you remove the ability to discuss anything with nuance or complexity, which is where we are already, you are now in the realm of “woke”.
Big fan - but I have to side with George on this one. The media is once again trying to create a frenzy. Just have a look at the cover pages of the daily mail. and best of all - its completely without any context of the history of the region, even so far back as 2014 where the west engaged in its own little bit of fuckery in Ukraine, and what that led to in the different regions of the country.
I too fear where this will lead, just look at how the fear mongering over Covid started (after the horse had bolted and the bug spread all over) and how it was used to justify years of lockdowns, mandates, forced experimental jabs, etc. And its not hard to extend this current "crisis" to something as draconian.... I agree with anyone who says its extremely sad, and wish the best for those being screwed over on all sides..... but I really dont think we in the west should jump into this one. The more we do, the more it will be used by our Dear Leaders as an argument to get us more involved. And lets say I really dont want to have a dog in this fight....
Its so nice to see guys like Chris and George have respectful debates about issues and ideas they disagree on. If this were CNN you'd be in tiny boxes yelling over each other about which of you is really just a Russian asset spreading disinformation for the Trump campaign or whatever.
The media is ignoring a lot of the backstory in regard to this situation. We are ignorant to the political issues in that region and our own interventions in Ukraine that have created this situation. It is interesting the Ukrainians were downplaying the impending invasion for weeks, while the Biden admin was saying it was imminent (one of the few time the intelligence apparatus was correct?).
I think many of the "sanctions" are petty and will have no real effect on the ongoing military operations (No longer selling Vodka - despite the fact 99% of the Vodka consumed in the US is NOT from Russia, or banning Russian cats). They largely symbolic and will only drive to isolate Russians across the world ( See post-9/11 sentiment toward Muslims). Confiscating private jets and yachts of the wealthy Russians seems to be criminal and another pointless effort.
Biden should act like a leader and attempt to assist in the brokering of a peace deal between the countries- however, he seems content to let the EU run the show. War is never a good thing and should be avoided at all costs and NATO and the US missed many opportunities in the past to prevent this from occurring.
Umm.... Here you go front page of Yahoo... Ghost of Kiev....
Misinformation to make people feel a certain way!!!
Wokeism and cancel culture are not about the ideas. They are phenomena. It is the desire to make an impact and "do the right thing". People look at the behavior of Ukraine supporters and see a symbol has been added to the bio, a donation link has been shared, and that we are freezing the bank accounts of and hunting down anyone associated with a certain heretical thing. This could describe #MeToo, BLM and George Floyd, the Jan 6 incident, the trucker protest, and now Russia acting against Ukraine.
I empathize with the Ukrainian people because they are being sacrificed by the US State Department to try and provoke Russia. I also find a majority of what is taking place to be incorrect on the Ukrainian side. Ukraine is not a sovereign nation, yet. Sovereignty means you aren't conquered when attacked. It also means that the entire rest of the world is not having to put their thumbs on the scale to slow your defeat. It is mano-a-mano. US Senators are calling for Putin's assassination. Did the leader of Germany call for George W Bush to be executed for invading the "sovereign" country of Iraq?
You are very talented at spotting propaganda from the FED and other economic departments, you are wholesale accepting and repeating the international version of that. The US dominates the world economically and militarily, the few remaining countries that are not under direct US control or influence are always painted as the bad guys. Many of them are in-fact bad guys however you never get to hear their explanation for what they are doing. The fact that the Pro-Ukraine position is known by anyone who has a twitter or watches the news but the Pro-Russian (by pro i simply mean their reason for the conflict) is completely unknown.
I agree with you Chris, I think the whole invasion is all Putin and his blind ambition to restore the USSR to its former glory. With the devastation to the Russian economy and people, they are clearly against it as shown through the protests. I don't think you could get Putin to go along with helping to start a great reset. It is just one crazy maniac and his ambition. I am surprised he hasn't been taken out yet quite frankly.
I tend to agree with Peter Schiff's take that NATO should have been disbanded after the fall of the Soviet-backed Warsaw Pact. He stated on one of his podcasts (recently) that the whole point of NATO was to combat the threat posted by the Soviets; therefore, once the Soviets were gone NATO became, essentially, moot. Since it does, it leaves us with this, "all or nothing" with what European powers like the UK and France can have to Putin. Any war with those, or any other NATO countries, becomes a World War by default. It's feasible that Putin may have balked at invading Ukraine if he knew he was going to have a real fight on his hands, but he accurately determined that Ukraine isn't worth the West's risk of turning every fish on the planet into Blinky from the Simpson's. So in this regard, NATO shares some of the blame for the current situation in Ukraine simply because of the nature of what it is, as well as its slow, but consistent, encroachment upon Russia's borders. Having said that, NATO hasn't done so to the point that warrants this invasion. So while the excuse of the Ukraine being needlessly considered for NATO is there, it's not prudent that Putin acted upon it. I think we all know or love someone who will look for a reason to act irrationally if we provide him/her the motivation to do so, and we do everything we can not to to be the catalyst for that individual's "Crazy" excuse. If we become that, it never truly excuses bad behavior, but we know deep down that our own behavior perhaps played a part in it. That's how I see the situation in Russia. While NATO is supposed to be a deterrent, in this case, it allowed Putin enough cover to act like the power-driven despot he is.
I don't know if the MSM is intentionally going for the, "cancellation" of Russia but I don't know if they can help themselves. For the better part of a decade, the MSM is either the chief promoter of something, Woke/Socialist talking points, or the chief canceler of what it finds abhorrent. It's consistently in one of these two modes, and since it rightly finds Russia's invasion to be less-than, it's going full cancellation on them. Does that mean we're being, "played"? I mean- maybe, but since an all-or-nothing take is rarely reasonable for media outlets I could argue that we're always being gas-lit by the likes of Fox, MSNBC, and CNN.
There's fault on both sides here. More of it lies with Russia, but NATO and the West isn't blameless. If NATO disbanded tomorrow, I doubt Putin would change his mind, but it would leave him with more things to consider and without his primary talking point to justify his actions. I also like to ask, "Cui Bono?" with these situations. And like COVID, the same people keep popping up as the answer to that question. So in the end, maybe we all are as hoodwinked as George believes, but for different reasons.
Writing from Kyiv, where it is hard to be a disinterested party. All of these sanctions, such as that of the international cat federation, add up. The uniformity of media opinion in Russia is even greater than here in Ukraine or the United States. Since the advent of the war news in Russia is tightly controlled. Russian websites I used to follow aren't there anymore.
Russia remains a provincial country. My English friend Gary has called people he knows and they were unaware that there was a war going on. So, yes, whatever it takes to make the Russian people aware of the situation. Gary says the Putin is slapping people with five and 10 year sentences for even using the word "war" instead of the approved "operation." The Russian people have always lived in fear. They certainly do now.
I listened to about one minute of CNN and the hysterical tone drove me crazy. I hear Russian missiles exploding out my window, but I am not as panicked as CNN. Cool it!
Even if Russia succeeds in a military victory, they will have a very hard time occupying Ukraine, especially in the face of a hostile world community. Ukraine has demonstrated that they do not want to be Russian again.
My take on this, I'd say, is probably spicy. I side with Tim that we're being manipulated; though, as to who's doing the manipulating is a little harder to say.
First and foremost, I agree with you that people may get emotional about the state of things given that it's a war. However, and I'm going to be harsh here: a leader getting emotional on stage like Zelenskyy did in front of the EU is a bad leader. When you're *the* leader of an entire country, you bear the weight of every action the country takes and everything that happens to your country; you bear the life of every citizen within the country; and you bear the responsibility of doing what's best for your country. Getting upset because your country has been invaded means you're incapable of handling the harshness of reality. Civilians can get upset—they're the ones who get hurt the most. But you, as the leader of the entire country? You do not have that luxury.
Let's take a look at Zelenskyy's most recent action. He claimed that Russian troops were firing at the nuclear reactors in Zaporizhzhia and creating a threat of nuclear disaster. Likewise, he calls for immediate NATO support, particularly by imposing a No Fly Zone. Here's Korrespondent covering Zelenskyy's official word: https://twitter.com/emeriticus/status/1499630296609796097
Here's The Daily Mail covering it as well: https://twitter.com/emeriticus/status/1499648154093985797
And here's Mark Nelson's commentary on Zelenskyy's video making the same announcement: https://twitter.com/energybants/status/1499573995657646106
The majority of what Zelenskyy said is incorrect. The reactor itself was not on fire, radiation levels were not elevated, and combat was not occurring near the reactors themselves. Here's Michael Shellenberger covering the details in a long thread: https://twitter.com/ShellenbergerMD/status/1499568842816692225
This is, without a doubt, fear porn courtesy of Zelenskyy. His reactions are an attempt to escalate the conflict. Any leader with half a brain knows that this is a terrible idea and will only make the situation worse. Zelenskyy isn't stupid—he knows this, and that's why he's doing it. He's looking out for his own interests at the cost of his country and his citizens.
The Chernobyl plant is currently being guarded by both Ukrainian and Russian troops *together*: https://twitter.com/RWApodcast/status/1499535072373972994
There was no major conflict at Chernobyl despite also being guarded, meaning the conflict at Zaporizhzhia was most likely intentional courtesy of the Ukrainians. I'm gonna go out on a limb here and say that Ukraine, possibly under orders from Zelenskyy and his cabinet, chose to move their forces to Zaporizhzhia to use the reactors as a shield to discourage additional fighting. That's incredibly unethical and stupid if so.
Next, we have the claim that the Ukrainian military was heading to Poland to fly combat missions from a Polish air base into Ukrainian airspace. See this thread here: https://twitter.com/ASBMilitary/status/1498463454012792835
And this one here, where the Twitter account of a Ukrainian government official is shown to make the claim: https://twitter.com/RWApodcast/status/1498481048791003136
Poland is a NATO country, so them lending aircraft to the Ukrainian military to use for engaging the Russian military in Ukrainian air space is effectively the same as NATO engaging in the conflict. That is completely nuts. The Secretary General of NATO, Jens Stoltenberg, had to step in and make it explicitly clear that NATO will be doing no such thing. See here: https://twitter.com/ASBMilitary/status/1498610240631324674
So, no, I have no reason to take Zelenskyy or the Ukrainian government at their word. Their actions seem to be predicated upon escalating the conflict for their own interests at the expense of their country and their citizens. My take is they're trying to make themselves look like David fighting Goliath, but that's not remotely true and the probability that they can fight the Russian military back is abysmally low.
As for why Western media is propping up Zelenskyy and co.? Probably because it makes us look good and righteous and justifies us taking action in a couple of ways. One, we're sanctioning parts of the Russian economy, like steel, that better enable US companies to take hold of the market. Two, it enables us to spend more money on weapons that we send over to Ukraine, which is great for companies like $RTX. We're basically asking Ukrainians to die for the sake of Western interests and Zelenskyy is going along with it. I do not care for that one bit and find it highly unethical.
Also, the West sanctioning Russia and companies boycotting Russia is a joke. We can't claim to be operating from some moral high ground while we continue to use Chinese manufacturing and production *and* continue selling within the Chinese market with an incredibly authoritarian and disgusting government. I find every action we're taking to be sanctimonious and emotionally-driven. Likewise, it's the Russian citizens furthest down the economic ladder who pay the cost of the sanctions, not the government officials or the oligarchs. You need to ask yourself what your actual goals are and then determine whether the actions you're trying to take work towards or against those goals.
Lots to unpack. As usual, when a "crisis" occurs, there's no understanding of the preceding events so intelligent decisions can't be made. Appeals to emotions are offered by governments and the lapdog media. What I suggest: sanctions are acts of war and should be discontinued. If Americans want to stop wars, let's start with Yemen. Honest discussions should be begin concerning Europe's security system. NATO should be disbanded. The idea that the psychopaths who rule your country are somehow materially different than another country's psychopaths must be dismissed for the fairy tale that it is.
A lot of great points here. Thought I might add a few more.
First, the translator that started this discussion isn't just your random and obscure translator. Apparently her names is Daria Kaleniuk. She is tied into the WEF and was used as a pro-Biden voice in the last election. She is a political operative.
Since I started to really pay attention to world events (right after 911), the regime and their media have been nothing but propagandists. On all the big things for the last 20 years, there have been so many lies and attempts to manipulate that I personally cannot take at face value anything they try to present as fact. They don't deserve the benefit of the doubt when it comes to their attempt to structure the narrative as to what is really happening.
And the blatant hypocrisy of the United States government cannot be ignored. Russia is acting in what they state is their national security interest.
I abhor unnecessary military actions. I abhor the elites in any country's political class choosing to unleash the horrors of war on a population and the loss of life that comes with it. But who in the hell is the United States to admonish another sovereign country when it comes to that country using military force to invade another different nation in the name of "national security?"
Every sanction, every measure to marginalize Russian people and Russia as a whole widens the divide between East and West and makes it easier for the political elites (most of whom could give 2 shits about the lives of the masses) to justify military action.
I think I side more with George...
We are being played.
The Russian security concerns over Ukraine are legitimate, IMO. What would USA do if:
- Canada decided to host a few Chinese military bases or missiles along Canada/USA border?
- Cuba decided to host some Russian missiles??
I don't remember any sanctions against America when it senselessly invaded Iraq (or so many other countries America has attacked)???
There definitely seems to be some level of cancel culture going on against anything Russian despite what seems is that most Russians are appalled at what Putin is doing. Also the Putin is crazy narrative maybe a bit much, he has been de-dollarizing, stacking gold, and planning this for the better part of a decade or longer. Not necessarily the actions of someone who has lost their mind. My 2 cents.
I think George is more right on this. Sanctions are an escalation. What benefit is depriving the Russian people of food be because their dictator did something wrong? Starving people rely more on their government and, like most government policies, it will have the opposite effect of what was intended. We should be de-escalating with Putin. Let's start by offering to put it in writing that Ukraine won't ever be part of NATO and see where it goes from there. But we aren't doing anything like that.
Did you see the media harassing Alex Ovechkin to denounce Putin and Russia. Does that make you feel good? Regardless of what he feels, denouncing Putin and Russia could have serious ramifications for him and his family. Besides, I don't see any Americans being forced to denounce their country and leaders over their handling of Yemen (and numerous other humanitarian crises over the past few decades).
Speaking of Yemen, it is the worst humanitarian crisis in the world over the past decade (yes, even worse than Ukraine). It's lead by the Saudis, but its being enabled, serviced, and profited on by Americans. Imagine if the world started cancelling Americans over this genocide. Maybe American blogs and podcasts would be banned. I think that would be stupid. The vast majority of Americans don't support this and punishing them for evil actions taken by the government wouldn't be helpful. But Americans don't have to worry about being cancelled every time their government does something awful. So, why do Russians face this punishment?
It is clear to me that we are on a full-blown propaganda war. It has been said by many people already, but I think it is important to keep that in mind all the time, whenever you see any type of publicly-disseminated information source. I am listening to yesterday's MacroVoices episode, where very smart folks including Dr. Pippa Malmgren (hardly a conspiracy nut) have argued that WWIII is ongoing already, just in places we're not paying attention to. (Read her substack here: https://drpippa.substack.com/p/wwiii-has-already-started?s=r). Propaganda is part of this war. As for your first question, sanctions won't lead to internment camps, but propaganda will.
In my opinion, the Zelenskyy (and the Ukrainian leadership) failed horrendously when he did not evaluate the situation from a realistic perspective. This is unfortunately an increasingly-common issue with Western leaders. As you commonly state in your podcast Chris, we have lost the ability to recognize that sometimes things will be bad and uncomfortable. As a consequence, the population and their elected leaders prefer a more comfortable version of the world that does not mesh with reality. In aligning themselves with the West, Ukrainian leaders failed to recognize the reality of their situation, dictated not by one Russian autocrat, but by geography and history. Geography dictates that Ukraine and its resources will always be closer to Russia than to America, and history that tells us that Russia has and always will have an interest in keeping its western side controlled. None of this justifies war from a moral standpoint, but again, thinking realistically, wars do happen for predictable reasons, and political leaders should be aware of those reasons and act accordingly.
This is not just my idea. This guy puts it well:
I think the only way out of this without significant consequences for everyone involved is to have Zelenskyy capitulate and acquiesce to never becoming part of NATO, or for NATO to deny membership to Ukraine, then go back to diplomacy ASAP. I realize that is a bad scenario, but again, the real world is not always good. I am reminded of the famous Melian dialogue quote: "The strong do what they can, the weak suffer what they must". It is emotionally wrenching to say this, but frankly, emotions have no place when nuclear war is on the table. This is a lesson that my generation (I'm 30) evidently hasn't learned.
The worst possible thing for the West to do is to continue to cripple the Russian economy. Haven't we seen this movie before, say around the 1930's? It seems clear now that many in Russia did not want the invasion. Nothing works better to align the people of a country with an extremist dictator than severe economic hardship (Remember Neo-Nazis in Greece during the austerity program?) Again thinking in realpolitik terms, it is unwise to push a nuclear-armed cat with delusions of grandeur into a corner.
Obvious counterpoint: If Ukraine capitulates, we'll appear weak and prompt Russia to invade further. I honestly don't know what a good solution is at this stage. Perhaps we can have a "Dead Man's Switch" of our own (With thanks again to Dr. Malmgren for her recent article), by placing many troops in the surrounding NATO countries?
As to how deliberate this is, it is hard to tell, going on previous experience though, I'm inclined to say that this is somewhere on the spectrum between "don't let a crisis go to waste" and "Fear works wonders at manipulating people and COVID is over". Seems unlikely that they orchestrated the whole thing, though I'm sure that powerful and moneyed western interests have had a heavy hand in aligning the Ukrainian government with the West. I don't think that is a hard claim to make given that the State Dept. has done it before.
I spent 10 years in China and the difference between us and them is that most Chinese know that their media is propaganda.
Martin Armstrong did a nice writeup detailing his proposed solution Chris:
Also, it should be a red flag whenever people start trying to personalize complex issues like they are doing with Putin and Zelensky. That's what the media always does--they personalize things, especially politics. Its childish.
Yes "a cancel culture of sorts" Ben 79 is a good way of summarising it......we want to condemn the act of bastardry Putin has committed with the invasion but that doesn't mean we can't at least pay attention to the argument advanced for it if only to be able to knock it down. By removing anything Russian from the debate (even cats !) we make it impossible to understand the misplaced reasoning of this man. And whilst to understand is to forgive (sometimes), it also has the benefit of allowing us to challenge and dissuade. I find it unsettling when we have mob rule over what we can and can't discuss. It leads to less understanding and....more war. So much more jaw please. Our greatest problem: folk are generally not trained to weigh the merits of opposing arguments and we encourage them to build their case mainly on emotion, which leads to the destructive cancel culture we see. The Russians do have a case which they see as the encroachment of Nato on their borders and (less plausible) attacks on ethnic Russians in the semi independent areas of Donetsk region. I don't agree with their response but it is the sign of an advanced society that we can at least examine their case. Oliver
It’s cool tho. We’re far a more advanced society than the WWII folks that interred Japanese Americans. Right?
If goods don’t cross borders, army’s will.
If you don’t see the Cloward-Piven strategy at work here then there may be no hope. You can ignore reality. But you can’t ignore the consequences of ignoring reality. The puppeteers behind Bidan wanted this war. The media wanted this war. The WEF wanted this war. Putin obliged. Who have been the 3 most prominent world leaders who have fought the one world government idea pushed by the UN, WHO, WEF? Trump. Putin. Xi. Add Bolsnaro for good measure. What is happening is so obvious on its face. Denying otherwise is akin to still believing that two weeks to flatten the curve was all about your health. Cmon man.
When Covid hit, the automatons took the hill with “We’re all in this together!” chants and signs in there yards, virtue signaling with personalized masks, and posts ad nauseam on social media. Now the automatons have been redirected from Covid (which magically disappeared when Putin made his move) to we must all stand with Ukraine or suffer WWIII. “Uranian” flags are flying with American flags now, and social media is a playground of virtue signaling once again. Propaganda is inevitable in any war. The pics swirling around about all the models and Ukrainian beauty queens taking up arms isn’t obvious at all. Hell, if I was President I would make full use of propaganda as a tool. The difference I see is the quick pivoting of the unthinking around me from taking one hill, to immediately regrouping to take another hill. That tells me serious manipulation is going on with the populace.
This is why I subscribe Chris because although you have a lot of these Tin Foil guys on your show you can be a voice of reason. There is no conspiracy to start WW3. The media sensationalism is off the charts to see who can one up the other guy. I had to turn Hannity off yesterday when he wouldn’t stop acting like the nuclear reactor was ready to blow up. The sanctions are directed at regime change in Russia. These people slept walked through 20 years of Putin and now their surprised that an evil dictator is acting the way he is when they have allowed this to happen. I have Russian friends who are appalled by this action. My grandfather,Ukrainian, left there in the 20s. I feel for all of these people affected by this horrible evil act. Sanctions are the only weapon the West has to try and stop Putin. Hope it works.
Never let a crisis go to waste
Overall I think it's a good way to react towards a war that could have been avoided entirely. Russia has absolutely no right to enter Ukrainian soil whatsoever. Doesn't matter where the borders were in the past - just as much as Sweden would have no right to invade Finland, even though Finland was once a part of Sweden and 20% or so of the country still speaks Swedish.
At the same time I think the western world has been very naïve by thinking this wouldn't be a possibility and have squandered European safety and peace needlessly. Finding a good middle ground between Europe and Russia should have been the way in the past, but wasn't. Now it's more a question of showing discontent with the mives of Russia without actually engaging militarily. Economically it should go much further by stopping the flow of gas and oil from Russia entirely. Blackouts and no heat should be accepted as a consequence and I suppose MSM should be able to sell that. Anything to refrain from using violence.
Overall, there's just no reasonable way forward anymore, those opportunities were squandered.
Here's the problem I see with this being a lead-up to the Great Reset; the last thing Klaus Schwab and his reprehensible cronies want is to benefit from someone like Putin. That means that all their carefully laid plans of global domination will be meaningless because Putin will be the ultimate godfather and choose the goals, not them. In other words, they won't be running things, which is clearly their goal.
So I rule out that conspiracy theory. as to whether the media is trying to inflame tensions and drive things to a hot war, it is very difficult for any human to look at the images we see via mainstream and social media or hear the stories and not respond to the brutality that Putin is displaying. they don't need to inflame passions here, Putin is doing that all by himself. the critical issue is whether the West will ultimately respond via the military, or will they continue to rely on the economic attacks in order to ultimately force Putin to blink.
I believe most active involved (and many other) Western-based corporations are doing (making decisions and taking actions) against Russia (Putin) policy against Ukraine in real time based on what we all are seeing and understanding. The objective is garnering understanding of the Russian populace that this is an unwarranted war against a friendly and sovereign nation, being targeted against civilians as a strategic basis of creating a failure of Ukraine. It was over-estimated in capability, and underestimated in Ukraine desire to keep a democracy against the Russian (Putin) resolve of re-incorporation. Corporations are providing real measures of sanctions. The US Gov't is playing games and world politics led by bureaucrats. The current Admin is leading from behind, not just the EU, but corporate CEOs who see the obvious need to stand up against Putin. The way to get Putin to stop (or out) is through the Russian population standing up. The US Gov't is behind the curve at this point, hopefully they catch up and provide Ukraine the capabilities to stand while the economics overcome. It is an economic war now, with military being a supportive position. Could have (should have) been different, lives needlessly lost.
Here's another source. https://smoothiex12.blogspot.com/
The OTHER side of the news. I encourage all human non-bots to read BOTH sides and make up your mind for yourself. Do not allow another entity to do your thinking for you.
If anyone finds any non-Western Propaganda Narrative sources them please post them. Thanks.
The hysteria building up in the public is a precursor to war. It's not functionally different than the unhinged response to mask wearers around COVID. War is a messy business. The reality is that the Russians see themselves as the good guys. There is much gray area around this conflict, and we need to get past the outrage to understand both sides. Does the media show Azov battalions shelling civilians in the breakaway republics? Not ours, but Russian media exclusively shows that version of events. Just like the Nazis and Allies both thought they were the moral side as well. Many allied war crimes in WW2 you never heard about because we won the war and wrote history. If the fervor continues to increase the risk of an actual world war will continue, because the public on both sides demands it.
Look at Whitney Webb's piece on Zelenskyy and the CIA. The guy is far from a saint and he's playing the western media like a fiddle with this David vs. Goliath narrative. Putin is not a saint either. This conflict is not good vs evil or black vs white.
As with so much about this conflict, some of the things you are debating are not mutually exclusive. Let's start with the weeping reporter: could that have been spontaneous in reaction to an inspiring speech? Of course! Do I think she was faking tears? I have no idea. But that's a completely independent issue from the media narrative, at least as seen here in the US. Does it strike nobody as conspiratorial that MSNBC, Fox (with some limited exceptions), CNN and the networks are ALL on the same side here? Does it strike anyone as concerning that simply pointing out that this may be the result of actions on our side with respect to NATO expansion is being called treason? TREASON? Oh, and then there's stuff like this. https://theintercept.com/2022/02/24/ukraine-facebook-azov-battalion-russia/
As for how the media is painting Russians, what are they doing by highlighting stories like the bar owners that are dumping out bottles of vodka from Russia (or, more moronically, brands that SOUND Russian but actually aren't). Who do they think they're hurting? Did they buy the bottle on credit, only due when the last shot is pored into a shot glass? They PAID for it already! But if you believe unthinking, reflexive stories don't paint a narrative I think you're not really aware of how media manipulates. They don't have to SAY "you should hate Russians". They just let people who don't know any better do it for them and then run those stories while those same networks are calling Tucker Carlson traitor for questioning our interest in Ukraine. Conspiracies don't necessarily entail secret meetings in the mountain lair of the bad guy.
Now, as for the sanctions: Let me start by pointing out that as an undergrad I had two majors: international relations and Russian studies (I did not end up graduating with this one for a stupid reason but spent a lot of time with Russians both here and there). Do you not find it interesting that when Russia goes to war with Ukraine, the stories are all about how resolute the Ukrainians are agains an attacker who is probably more culturally aligned with them than any other country on the planet? Now, contrast that with the narrative that if the West places its boot on the neck of Russia hard enough and long enough, the Russians will see the error of their ways and put Putin out of office one way or the other. Maybe. But when the dust clears, the people will also know that the West had a choice in how to respond and what road they took. If you think cultural resentment was a factor before, you ain't seen nothing yet. Oh, and crap like this WILL be some of what they use. https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/world/swalwell-doubles-down-on-controversial-idea-of-kicking-russian-students-out-of-us/ar-AAUjDS9
Finally, all the calls for a Russian "Brutus" to take out their Caesar had best go back and study what happened to Rome after that fateful event.
I can see both sides in this argument, but I lean a little towards your side. I like George quite a bit, but he is more prone to hyperbole than you. Or almost any other person on his intellect level.
I always look at what the main stream media with a jaundiced eye…. Last night was no exception with the reporting on the bombing of the Ukraine nuclear power plant (6 units).. the network i listened to when I tuned in (yep, i clicked that bait) was proclaiming the nuclear power plant was on fire, there was a radiation leak, and how this was going to be 10 times worse than Chernobyl…. All turned out later to be histrionics.. I told my wife i didnt believe the reporting; if this was going on, the operators would have scramed the reactors (which are contained in a steel vessel and very thick concrete) to mitigate the risk. Then they were playing a clip over and over showing a rocket striking a parking lot. I think the networks go into overdrive for click bait when they have half a story (they want to be first even if they are wrong).. So I am not sure they are doing the Deep States bidding on cancel culture ALL the time…. But I cant put them totally in the clear either!
I seems to me there are a lot of Russian trolls/Putin sympathizers on this chat trying to use the 'what aboutism' argument to criticize U.S. foreign policy and its woke culture etc. The fact you're even able to discuss this and not be locked up or disappeared, as you would now be in Russia for criticizing the war, makes a lot of this discussion laughable.
If you really believe the U.S. is so bad why live here. So many Americans spend their living breathing days kicking the crap out of their country and have no concept of what it would be like to live in these autocratic regimes. I've lived here 25yrs and whilst I would be the first to say America is not at all perfect and does bad things here and around the world, it is still a beacon of freedom for the rest of the world. People here need to start appreciating what they have in terms of freedom.
I was thinking about the slippery slope this morning. Right now it's just the Russian billionaires they're coming after. But I feel like this is part of a continuing narrative against wealth in general. This is the SJW wet dream in action.
The United States and NATO should address Russia's demands, which we have refused to do these past 7-1/2 years, and which to my eyes seem exceedingly reasonable. Instead we provoked a fight with Russia, and then quickly exited out the back of the bar to cheer for the Ukrainians from the parking lot. Pretty Shitty.
Chris I think you're both correct. I've been following Putin and his inner circle for 20 years, specifically Alexander Dugin. There is an absolute obsession of the inner circle to bring back the old Russian empire and reclaim the lands that were lost. So yes, I believe Putin's goal is to reclaim the Russian empire, but I think he was pushed there by the West.
We have a weak president, Biden's poll numbers are terrible, and Biden can use the Russian crisis to his advantage. For example he can now blame inflation, and supply chain issues on Russia. The left now has their new boogie man!
In the EU, they now have a reason to move away from Russian oil and gas and go full throttle towards green energy. Russia was never going to buy into the great reset, and European's know that they can rely on Russian gas and oil to heat their homes and run their cars, and the only thing keeping prices high and supply constrained was the EU and WEF masters. Now the EU and WEF have an excuse to move off of Russian oil and gas. In summary, the crisis helps cover the ass of the politicians in the West and Klause get's his next step towards the great reset.
Both ideas have merit and to me it looks like we are both hearing about the actual crisis and also overreacting to the call to be patriotic. Cancelling some poor Russian tennis team from all tournaments is not going to help the war effort. But there is something to be said of the strategy of getting the Russian populace so fired up they begin to revolt. The only question is will any of this drive people away from Putin or closer to Putin. Just like sanctions I think it's an absolute coin toss on the outcome. You know who's buying Russian oil companies for a 90% discount? Oligarchs. In 10 years they will be richer than they've ever been. Ukraine asking for a no-fly, telling us a nuclear plant is on fire when it kind of isn't the whole truth, both Ukraine and Russia seem intent on dragging NATO into war. I trust neither side and only my common sense in deciding who deserves my criticism. Russian tennis teams are not one of them. That being said even the media sided with American Muslims pretty quickly when they were being discriminated against. This time it appears the media is all on one side of the boat here and that scares me. My own family seems pretty happy to just regurgitate the idea that Putin is a mad man and there is no justification for this, while ignoring our own sins abroad that have lead to this over the last 30 years. Blind patriotism has never ended well.