In times of universal deceit, telling
the truth is a revolutionary act.
         - George Orwell

Napoleon once observed that "history" is a set of lies agreed upon. In an era of ubiquitous fake news and information warfare, this has never been more true. The very concept of objective truth in history is fading out of our world. Pure propaganda and outright lies are passing into our history textbooks as unquestioned truth, condemning future generations to false views about historical reality. But the task of sifting through the lies and propaganda is overwhelming, limited by the ambition and time constraints of most observors. Only those who have dedicated their lives to sorting reality from falsehood are qualified to rewrite "consensus" history as a duty to humanity. The contributors to this site endeavor to do just that.

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Sunday, August 13, 2017

Charlottesville, Virginia: Intimations of Civil War?

       If the election of Donald Trump as President has done nothing else, it has polarized the left and right in American politics.  The deep ideological battle has been simmering since the campaign a year ago, with the left focusing all their attention on unseating Trump, while the right has argued it's their turn to take the helm of the nation and reverse the excesses of liberalism running rampant throughout the nation.
       The weekend's chaos in Charlottesville brought both sides out in full force, exhibiting levels of anger not seen in decades.  Many have suggested the casualties of the violent encounters were the first shots in a new civil war.  But who's right and who's wrong?  Who was responsible for the violence?  Mainstream media have been quick to point to "neo-Nazis", but the truth may be far scarier.
The original gathering by members of the right was in protest of the city mayor's plans to remove an historic statue of Civil War General Lee from Lee Park.  The proper permits were taken out by protest organizers, and commitments were made to keep it a peaceful protest.  But liberals and leftists counter-organized and showed up in greater numbers to confront the protesters in a counter-demonstration.  These leftists had financial backing through George Soros-funded groups, and showed up with tear gas and pepper spray.

As it turns out, the state governor, Terry McAuliffe, is a Democrat with ties to Hillary clinton.  He can also be tied to George Soros money.  A money trail can also be detected between McAuliffe and the deliberately-botched investigation of Hillary's emails.  All of this has been revealed in the alternative media, raising questions about who was really behind the counter-rally and the ensuing violence.

Then we have the questionable actions of the police and National Guard, who herded the original right-leaning protesters into a fenced-off area, only to force them to vacate that area hours later via a narrow gauntlet lined by violent leftists.  Was this deliberate?  Was this a paid-set-up to villify the right, which has been growing in strength since the election of Trump?  Was this another carefully orchestrated attempt to isolate and demonize President Trump?

Even the normally left-leaning ACLU has come out saying the peaceful protest organized by the right should have been allowed to proceed, and that police had an obligation to keep counter-protesters away.  Needless to say, the entire thing smells fishy.  But this clash is probably just the beginning of many more to come as America's polarized politics boils over onto the streets.

Watch the following videos to get a broader perspective of what happened:

Here's a great article dissecting the underlying dynamics of the New Civil War:

The Wrong Narrative In Charlottesville

Tyler Durden's picture
The political violence in Charlottesville yesterday was as predictable as it was futile. One person was killed and dozens badly injured, marking a new low in the political and cultural wars that are as heated as any time since in America since the 1960s.
This relentless politicization of American culture has eroded goodwill and inflamed the worst impulses in society. Antifa and the alt-right may represent simple-minded expressions of hatred and fear, but both groups are animated entirely by politics: the perception that others can impose their will on us politically. The only lasting solution to political violence is to make politics matter less.
We’ve allowed politics to invade every aspect of American life, from religion and family life to sex and sexuality, from bathrooms to ball fields to the workplace. But what has it gotten us besides identity politics on steroids? The “personal is political” is hardly the rallying cry of a free and confident nation. Even as we enjoy historically unparalleled material prosperity, we are dispirited by the 2016 election hangover and looking for scapegoats to explain the American malaise.
It’s easy to decry Antifa and its violent leftwing rhetoric. It’s easy to decry the alt-Right, neo-Nazis, white supremacists, and fascists. It’s more important to understand them as exemplars of a new political age. Progressives demanded permanent revolution; conservatives responded by becoming permanent reactionaries. And the media bias (overwhelmingly anti-right) makes things worse: one “side” becomes convinced of its moral superiority, while the other becomes convinced the fix is in.
We suspect, without knowing, that a Hillary voter is just a step or two removed from a bandanna-clad Antifa, while a Mitt Romney voter is but a few degrees removed from an alt-Right nationalist marching in the streets. This may seem farcical, but the political society promoted by Clinton and Romney encourages it. Everyone must take a side, and live with the excesses.
What we saw this weekend was a demonstration of the horseshoe effect, where both groups begin to sound and act like the other-- both illiberal, both demanding omnipotent state solutions to problems mostly created by government in the first place.
To be sure, Antifa and the alt-right represent only a tiny fraction of the population and have little economic, social, or political power. But they serve as perfect fodder for a media narrative that benefits from a sky-is-falling narrative to ratchet up viewership. The narrative is fed by our vanity and desire to imagine easy solutions to complex problems (e.g. more “education,” hate speech laws, welfarism, etc.) And we play along, assuming the worst of others and issuing smug affirmations of our own superiority on Facebook and Twitter.
In 2018 we will suffer through a round of mid-term congressional elections which will only intensify the political and cultural divide. Both political parties will use events like Charlottesville to serve their shameful partisan goals. The need for each side to vanquish the other, to punish and repudiate the other’s existence, demonstrates why politics is termed war by other means. It’s not a peaceable process. Yet underneath it all the “policy” differences between Democrats and Republicans are laughably small. Theirs is a turf battle, nothing more.
In a winner takes all political world, elections are weapons. Unless and until we learn to reject politics as the overarching method for organizing society, hatred and fear of “the other” will remain pervasive. Americans understand viscerally that government has far too much power over who wins and loses in our society, but haven’t fully grasped the degree to which the political class benefits from division. We still want to believe in grade-school notions of democracy and voting.
People of goodwill don’t impose themselves on others politically any more than they do militarily. Libertarianism, with its goal of radically diminishing the scope of government and politics in our lives, offers a path to a more peaceful future. Only libertarians can claim the mantle of anti-authoritarianism, because only libertarians would deny government the power and size to become authoritarian. The political world isn’t working, so why do we insist on more politics to fix it?

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