Last week US Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin warned the US will impose new sanctions on China if it doesn’t conform to UN sanctions on North Korea:
“If China doesn’t follow these sanctions, we will put additional sanctions on them and prevent them from accessing the U.S. and international dollar system, and that’s quite meaningful.”
In other words, the administration wants to sanction one of the US’s biggest trading partners, and the world’s second-largest economy.
China is the world’s third-largest recipient of Americans exports, behind only Canada and Mexico. China is the world’s largest source of imports for Americans, slightly ahead of both Mexico and Canada.
In 2016, Americans exported $169 billion in goods and services to China while importing $478 billion of goods and services. Every year, both consumers and producers benefit from the importation of Chinese electronics, machinery, food, footwear, and more.
Ratcheting up economic warfare with China could serve to cut off these avenues of trade and thus will only cost consumers and small business owners who currently benefit from lower-cost machinery, clothing, and more.
For the mercantilists in the Trump administration, of course, American consumers import “too much” from China anyway, and Americans and ought to be prohibited by the US government from purchasing what they want. The North Korea situation could serve as a convenient excuse for slapping prohibitions on American consumers in the name of “fair trade” while also serving as a foreign policy tool.
The last thing the US consumer needs is a trade war with China.
At this point, however, the US isn’t talking about cutting off trade in such a blunt manner.
As Mnuchin notes, the strategy here is to “prevent [the Chinese] from accessing the U.S. and international dollar system.” In practice, this would likely mean restricting access to the so-called SWIFT system which facilitates international transactions in dollars.
This idea is highly problematic in its own way. Were the Chinese to be cut off from the dollar, this would only create an enormous incentive for the Chinese to move away from the dollar into other currencies — including its own. China’s largest trading partners would likely follow China in this exodus. Moreover, China and Russia have already foreseen the possibility of SWIFT being “weaponized.”
As Jeff Thomas notes:
China, Russia and others have seen this day coming and have created their own SWIFT system, world cable network and world banking system. All that’s needed to kick it all into gear is a major international need to bypass SWIFT. The US government has just provided that need with this threat. There would certainly be teething pains in getting the new system running on a massive scale, but the sudden worldwide need would drive the implementation.
Moreover, China is a key trading partner for Germany, Russia, Australia, Japan. Brazil, and South Korea. Will these countries simply write off China as a trading partner because thy can’t settle accounts in dollars? It’s unlikely.
While this would not necessarily destroy the dollar, a movement away from the US dollar would greatly diminish the dollar’s standing as the world’s reserve currency. It would diminish the dollar’s role as the go-to currency, and this would, in turn, drive up borrowing costs — i.e. interest rates — for the US government. This would turn the US’s currently sustainable debt problem into an unsustainable one. Massive domestic budget cuts in the US would follow. …
BY J.B. HANDLEY September 18, 2017
In the December 2017 issue of the Journal of Inorganic Biochemistry and released online today, Dr. Christopher Shaw and colleagues at the University of British Columbia have established convincing biological evidence linking aluminum adjuvant used in vaccines to autism.
VANCOUVER, British Columbia — Just two weeks ago, I wrote about a study from France that raised major concerns about aluminum adjuvant used in vaccines. The French study authors wrote: “Concerns about its [aluminum adjuvant’s] safety emerged following recognition of its unexpectedly long-lasting biopersistence within immune cells in some individuals, and reports of chronic fatigue syndrome, cognitive dysfunction, myalgia, dysautonomia and autoimmune/inflammatory features temporally linked to multiple Al [aluminum]-containing vaccine administrations.”
In a nutshell, the French study found that when smaller doses of aluminum adjuvant were consistently injected over a short period of time — like during childhood vaccinations —the aluminum was more likely to end up in the brain, and the French scientists issued a stern warning about the use of aluminum adjuvant in vaccines:
In the context of massive development of vaccine-based strategies worldwide, the present study may suggest that aluminium adjuvant toxicokinetics and safety require reevaluation.
Canadian researchers establish direct link
In the December 2017 issue of the Journal of Inorganic Biochemistry and released online today, Dr. Christopher Shaw and colleagues have established convincing biological evidence linking aluminum adjuvant to autism. The study’s title alone should cause concern for parents everywhere:
Subcutaneous injections of aluminum at vaccine adjuvant levels activate innate immune genes in mouse brain that are homologous with biomarkers of autism
As the study authors state:
“It thus appears that Al [aluminum adjuvant] triggered innate immune system activation and altered cholinergic activity in male mice, observations which are consistent with those in autism. Female mice were less susceptible to Al exposure as only the expression levels of NF-κB inhibitor and TNFA were altered. Regional patterns of gene expression alterations also exhibited gender differences, as frontal cortex was the most affected area in males and cerebellum in females. Thus, Al adjuvant promotes brain inflammation and males appear to be more susceptible to Al′s toxic effects.”
It’s critical to note that the researchers found gender differences in how the mice responded, with male mice showing higher susceptibility, which is consistent with what we are seeing in autism: roughly 80% of the cases are boys.
What does this mean in plain English?
Six months ago, I wrote an article about how close it appeared international scientists were to establishing a clear biological basis for how aluminum adjuvant can create autism. My article has been read more than 250,000 times, and I have heard from scientists from all over the world (most unwilling to let me quote them in public, which is its own great tragedy), including a scientist who has created a great website called Vaccine Papers. I asked “VP” about the importance of this study, and words were not minced:
This is the paper I have been waiting for.
This paper reports measurements of cytokines in the brains of animals injected with aluminum adjuvant as neonates. The same cytokines are elevated as in human autism. IL-6 and CCL2/MCP-1 are elevated for example. Male animals are more strongly affected. It’s a perfect match to human autism.
The paper includes a number of strong statements about vaccine causality.
This paper is hugely important because it shows IL-6 elevation in the brain, which of course provides a firm link to the immune activation literature. It is strong evidence supporting the al adjuvant IL-6 autism hypothesis.
…. Now what?
When I published my article back in February, I heard from scientists from all over the world. I heard from pediatricians. I heard from board members at Autism Speaks. Many agreed with me: this was disturbing and important work, and it may well describe where all this autism is coming from. What’s happened since that time? Nothing.
There’s no mechanism for reviewing or putting all this published science together. The scientists doing this great work are perpetually nervous that they will lose their funding source or get “Wakefielded.” There’s no group responsible for putting all these published scientists in a room and figuring out what we do about this giant mess, and what all this information means. Every minute, a new child is diagnosed with autism, and every minute, it strikes me that autism may be completely AVOIDABLE. If you’re reading this, all I can ask is that you share the information widely, and that if you happen to be in a position of influence, please help save our kids.
None of the following was really news to the damaged people who haunt the psychiatric “research” establishment. Years ago they actually promoted brain damage as “theraputic” for people they considered to be too smart, especially women. What was new when this came out was that the research was widely disseminated to the peons. The internet has wreaked havoc on the myth of medical authority in general, and the psychiatric scam has always been particularly vulnerable to exposure.
Summary: After 25 years and millions of dollars of federal funding to research the adverse cognitive effects of ECT—25 years in which not one single longterm followup study was ever published—self-proclaimed “world expert” on ECT Harold Sackeim has now reversed his position, admitting that ECT routinely causes permanent memory loss and deficits in cognitive abilities. His new study—the first to be published in which he followed patients as long as six months, and one of his only studies to use controls—validates a generation of patient reports of permanent iatrogenic disability, and disproves Sackeim’s previously published claims that these reports were simply symptoms of mental illness. Other findings: there is no evidence that ECT increases intelligence, as Sackeim has previously claimed; and women are much more likely than men to experience severe permanent amnesia.
Significance: Harold Sackeim has been called the Pope of ECT, and for good reason. He’s published more on ECT than anyone in the world, has received more money to research it than anyone in the world, and is the author of the American Psychiatric Association’s patient information statement and consent forms, which are used by most hospitals in America. Through his writing, teaching, testimony—and positions on peer review, editorial, and funding boards, including NIMH grant review panels—he has more influence on what the profession and the public believe about ECT than anyone in the world. What Harold says goes.
Conclusion: This study could have been done at any point in the past 25 years. If it had, a generation of patients could have been warned of the likelihood of permanent significant memory and cognitive deficits before, instead of finding out after, ECT. In fact, there is evidence—from Harold’s own statements—that over the years he has in fact conducted studies following up ECT patients for a long as five years…but never published the results. Why not? Why did it take 25 years and over ten million dollars to validate what patients have been saying all along? In other words: What did Harold know, when did he know it, and why wasn’t it revealed? …
Assisting Tehran with sidestepping an ongoing Washington sanctions regime against the country, China has opened a $10 billion line of credit intended to finance energy, transportation, water and other key Iranian infrastructure projects.
Following the ground-breaking 2015 Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) between Iran and Russia, the US, China, France, the UK, as well as Germany and the EU, to end its nascent nuclear weapons program, Tehran — in honoring the terms of the unprecedented treaty — has nonetheless seen Washington implement a host of new sanctions against the Middle Eastern country, including asset freezes and limits on global financial transfers.
According to Iranian Central Bank President Valiollah Seif, Chinese state-owned CITIC investment company has opened a $10 billion credit line to several banks in Iran to be used to fund wide-ranging infrastructure projects in the country, according to a report by the Times of Israel.
The significant credit line will primarily use euros and yuan to bypass the US sanctions….
Why ‘US Will Shoot Itself in the Foot’ in Case of New Sanctions Against Iran
Despite Washington’s persistent anti-Iranian policy, foreign investors will not turn away from the Iranian market, Iranian economic expert and journalist Ahmad Hadem Al-Melle told Sputnik. According to him, if there are new American sanctions against Iran they are unlikely to be supported by US allies.
After the final agreement on the Iranian nuclear program was signed and sanctions against Tehran were subsequently lifted, the country has been enjoying unprecedented investment flow into different parts of its economy. Western companies such as Siemens, Total, Volkswagen, Renault and Airbus are already running major projects in Iran….
And we’re supposed to believe this is just incompetence? No. There’s a huge “put” on this country and its investors have control of washington. This is disaster capitalism.
Clearly the US has escalated the pivotal role of the military in the making of foreign and, by extension, domestic policy. The rise of ‘the Generals’ to strategic positions in the Trump regime is evident, deepening its role as a highly autonomous force determining US strategic policy agendas.
In this paper we will discuss the advantages that the military elite accumulate from the war agenda and the reasons why ‘the Generals’ have been able to impose their definition of international realities.
We will discuss the military’s ascendancy over Trump’s civilian regime as a result of the relentless degradation of his presidency by his political opposition.
The Prelude to Militarization: Obama’s Multi-War Strategy and Its Aftermath
The central role of the military in deciding US foreign policy has its roots in the strategic decisions taken during the Obama-Clinton Presidency. Several policies were decisive in the rise of unprecedented military-political power.
- The massive increase of US troops in Afghanistan and their subsequent failures and retreat weakened the Obama-Clinton regime and increased animosity between the military and the Obama’s Administration. As a result of his failures, Obama downgraded the military and weakened Presidential authority.
- The massive US-led bombing and destruction of Libya, the overthrow of the Gadhafi government and the failure of the Obama-Clinton administration to impose a puppet regime, underlined the limitations of US air power and the ineffectiveness of US political-military intervention. The Presidency blundered in its foreign policy in North Africa and demonstrated its military ineptness.
- The invasion of Syria by US-funded mercenaries and terrorists committed the US to an unreliable ally in a losing war. This led to a reduction in the military budget and encouraged the Generals to view their direct control of overseas wars and foreign policy as the only guarantee of their positions.
- The US military intervention in Iraq was only a secondary contributing factor in the defeat of ISIS; the major actors and beneficiaries were Iran and the allied Iraqi Shia militias.
- The Obama-Clinton engineered coup and power grab in the Ukraine brought a corrupt incompetent military junta to power in Kiev and provoked the secession of the Crimea (to Russia) and Eastern Ukraine (allied with Russia). The Generals were sidelined and found that they had tied themselves to Ukrainian kleptocrats while dangerously increasing political tensions with Russia. The Obama regime dictated economic sanctions against Moscow, designed to compensate for their ignominious military-political failures.
The Obama-Clinton legacy facing Trump was built around a three-legged stool: an international order based on military aggression and confrontation with Russia; a ‘pivot to Asia’ defined as the military encirclement and economic isolation of China – via bellicose threats and economic sanctions against North Korea; and the use of the military as the praetorian guards of free trade agreements in Asia excluding China.
The Obama ‘legacy’ consists of an international order of globalized capital and multiple wars. The continuity of Obama’s ‘glorious legacy’ initially depended on the election of Hillary Clinton.
Donald Trump’s presidential campaign, for its part, promised to dismantle or drastically revise the Obama Doctrine of an international order based on multiple wars, neo-colonial ‘nation’ building and free trade. A furious Obama ‘informed’ (threatened) the newly-elected President Trump that he would face the combined hostility of the entire State apparatus, Wall Street and the mass media if he proceeded to fulfill his election promises of economic nationalism and thus undermine the US-centered global order.
Trump’s bid to shift from Obama’s sanctions and military confrontation to economic reconciliation with Russia was countered by a hornet’s nest of accusations about a Trump-Russian electoral conspiracy, darkly hinting at treason and show trials against his close allies and even family members.
The concoction of a Trump-Russia plot was only the first step toward a total war on the new president, but it succeeded in undermining Trump’s economic nationalist agenda and his efforts to change Obama’s global order.
Trump Under Obama’s International Order
After only 8 months in office President Trump helplessly gave into the firings, resignations and humiliation of each and every one of his civilian appointees, especially those who were committed to reverse Obama’s ‘international order’.
Trump was elected to replace wars, sanctions and interventions with economic deals beneficial to the American working and middle class. This would include withdrawing the military from its long-term commitments to budget-busting ‘nation-building’ (occupation) in Iraq, Afghanistan, Syria, Libya and other Obama-designated endless war zones.
Trump’s military priorities were supposed to focus on strengthening domestic frontiers and overseas markets. He started by demanding that NATO partners pay for their own military defense responsibilities. Obama’s globalists in both political parties were aghast that the US might lose it overwhelming control of NATO; they united and moved immediately to strip Trump of his economic nationalist allies and their programs.
Trump quickly capitulated and fell into line with Obama’s international order, except for one proviso – he would select the Cabinet to implement the old/new international order.
A hamstrung Trump chose a military cohort of Generals, led by General James Mattis (famously nicknamed ‘Mad Dog’) as Defense Secretary.
The Generals effectively took over the Presidency. Trump abdicated his responsibilities as President. …
Something to think about in the coming times, especially if you’re paid by a government agency:
Back when I was in college, many graduate students had paid positions at the university and used direct deposit. One student (a friend of mine) was a victim of a “computer error” — someone entered an extra “00” into the computer. Even though he was not overpaid, the computer thought he was, so it initiated a “direct withdrawal” in order to recall the funds. The student noticed this as soon as his bank told him that his account was empty. It took a day for him to talk to the right people at the school and they acknowledged the error. However, it took a semester for the school to put the money back.
This problem is not isolated to universities. Every Fortune-500 company that I have ever worked for has had their share of announcements. “Dear employees; due to an accounting error, every employee was paid for two weeks instead of one. We have corrected this by withdrawing the overpayment from your account.”
Most people do not realize that “direct deposit” means “direct withdrawal”. And today, many employers have mandated direct deposit, so it is no longer a choice. This problem is exacerbated by companies like PayPal, which are extremely difficult to contact when problems arise.
Unfortunately, there are few good solutions. Playing games like immediately moving all deposits into another account (even at another bank) only limits the problem. For example, if a mistake is found (or an errant deposit recall is issued) within a few days of the deposit, then the moneys can still be recalled even if it was transfered between banks. However, by moving the moneys, you ensure that they cannot withdraw more than they deposited (or more than exists in the initial account). And while they might drain the deposit account, they cannot drain the transfer’s destination account. (Make sure your bank does not link the accounts and do not enable any overdraft protection on the deposit account.)
The best solution, of course, is to take the money out in cash, and then redeposit it into a different account. The withdrawal can usually be done after a three-day waiting period. Using this approach, the payer can always try to recall payments, but there are no funds to recover. Then again, withdrawing a $10,000 deposit in cash — or even a bi-weekly $1,000 deposit — can raise suspicion at the bank and will likely lead to a SAR (Suspicious Activity Report).
The banking industry has known about this problem for decades. However, it hasn’t become a big enough problem for them to address. Ideally, banks should create deposit-only services. (A recall is still available, but no direct withdrawal.) Unfortunately, I don’t know of any banks that offer “direct deposit only” services.