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TM, ®, Copyright © 2015 Piero Scaruffi All rights reserved.

Articles on the USA published after 2015
The End of the USA
Why not Polygamy?
Congratulations NRA on another well-executed massacre
The demise of the dollar has been wildly exaggerated
The month that changed the USA
Countries that sponsor terrorism
Invite president Hassan Rouhani
The USA is a banana republic
Articles on the USA published before 2015

  • (december 2015) The End of the USA

    There have been many predictions about the demise of the USA as a world power. All of them have been proven wrong over and over again. At one point the USA, having lost the Vietnam war, was described as agonizing while the Soviet Union was viewed as dominating. That didn't even last 15 years because the Soviet Union disintegrated. Then analysts were quick to predict the Japanese takeover of the USA, based on the fact that Japan's economy was growing at a much faster pace and Japan had just bought the Rockefeller Center in New York. That one didn't even last two years because Japan entered an economic stagnation that has now lasted a quarter of a century. Then in 1999 the European Union introduced the euro, creating the eurozone, an economic union rivaling the USA, and the euro rapidly gained over the dollar. That threat didn't last more than a decade and now the eurozone is mostly known for the eurocrisis. Then came the threat of China, another country whose economy was growing by leaps and bounds, catching up with the USA, and a much bigger country than Japan. Read my 2012 article China is a colony of the USA for my view of this other "tiger paper". More recently economists worldwide have been predicting a collapse of the dollar. See my article The demise of the dollar has been wildly exaggerated for the reality. The USA has had little to worry about all these predictions. External forces have never seriously threatened the social order (let alone the physical borders) of the USA.
    However, this time it might be real. The National Rifle Association, which is de facto a terrorist organization bent on killing as many US citizens as possible (see, for example, Congratulations NRA: another successful massacre! and its 2015 revision Congratulations NRA on another well-executed massacre), has achieved its goal. Imagine an age in which Al Qaeda or ISIS or Boko Haram is legal in the USA, has its headquarters in the USA, can buy advertising on TV and newspapers, can even bribe politicians to pass terrorism-friendly laws and has thousands of members who are perfectly free to be members of a terrorist organization. That's precisely what the National Rifle Association is, and it is way bigger and better funded than any of those Islamic terrorist organizations. Thanks to its operations, the USA is rapidly becoming a country (the only one in the world) in which there are more guns than people, and legally so. There are 88.8 privately owned guns per 100 people in the USA while there are only 0.6 per 100 people in Japan where the murder rate is 40 times lower.
    The NRA has basically won. Now that the USA is terrorized by literally hundreds of mass shootings (300 so far in 2015) we have reached the tipping point when gun control does not make sense anymore. Asking people to walk around unarmed is rapidly becoming the equivalent of asking them to commit suicide. When everybody in your neighborhood is armed and you are not, you feel like a sitting duck. You will need to carry a gun to go and pick up your children at their primary school, or risk being gunned down in the parking lot. You will need to carry a gun when you mow your lawn or risk being gunned down by a drive-by shooter. You will need to carry a gun and a bullet-proof vest to go shopping because there will be snipers on the roofs of the nearby buildings.
    It has now become unthinkable to carry out in the USA the kind of mass confiscation of guns that Australia successfully carried out in 1996 (and that lowered their gun-violence rate to world-record levels).
    There are two tipping points in gun violence. The first one is when everybody has to get a gun because everybody else already has one. This tipping point causes gun violence to increase exponentially, as it is happening in 2015. The second tipping point happens when gun violence makes the country so dangerous that it basically enters a state of civil war, and the economy tanks because both domestic and international investors flee the country. That is what will happen next in the USA. That is how the USA will end. Not because of a military adversary like the Soviet Union, not because of an economic challenger like China, and certainly not because of the pacific invasion of illegal immigrants, but because of the legal spread of deadly weapons that will turn the USA into a place where nobody wants to do business.
    The next flood of destitute refugees towards Europe may come from the USA, not from Syria. The next surge of illegal immigrants may come from US citizens crossing the border into Mexico to flee the civil war at home.

    P.S. Lots of false data being circulated on the Internet. FBI data on the homicide rate in the USA: this summary. World Bank dada on homicide rates in various countries of the world: this summary. Most discussions use sources that are not reliables or wildly distorted figures.

    TM, ®, Copyright © 2015 Piero Scaruffi All rights reserved.
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  • (november 2015) Why not Polygamy?
    Three women got married in Brazil. The union is not recognized by the state, but they wanted to make a statement that they intend to live together for the rest of their lives (see for example this article). As more and more countries decide to broaden the definition of "marriage" to homosexual couples, an obvious question is: if marriage is NOT reserved to a man and a woman, why is it reserved to two people? Why is it illegal to marry more than one person? All the arguments in defense of homosexual marriage seem to apply (in even stronger versions) to polygamy. Think of the "they just love each other" argument. Well, isn't it good if three people love each other instead of just two? Isn't it good if ten people love each other so much to swear eternal union to each other instead of just two? Shouldn't society actually reward the bigger union over the smaller one instead of criminalizing any group of spouses that is greater than two? The limit to two people had a very simple biological explanation: a man and a woman can have children. But now that the definition of marriage does not depend anymore on that biological fact, what makes it unethical and even illegal to have multiple spouses?
    Polygamy has been pervasive in ancient times, and it is among most mammal species. It is perfectly legal to be a single mother or single father, but it is not legal to have a marriage among three people. Abraham, considered a prophet by Jews, Christians and Muslims alike, had three wives (Sarah, Hagar and Keturah): was he a criminal? The Bible is full of cases of polygamy and never refers to them as amoral. Mohammed, the founder of Islam, had five wives.
    To me it looks much more natural for a group of two men and three women to raise children (as it was in most ancestral societies) than for a same-sex couple to do so (something for which i find no precedents in ancestral societies). A family without a man or without a woman goes against biology, and may have consequences for which the entire society will have to pay. It may make more sense to have two mothers or two fathers than to have no mother or no father. (No, i don't take into any consideration the anti-gay propaganda of Mark Regnerus, Paul Sullins, and other "scholars". I am fully aware that their studies were biased, and i am fully aware that almost all the studies collected on the
    Columbia Law School's website show no problems in children raised by gay parents, but i am also aware that any study showing differences would have a much more difficult time being accepted by a scientific journal, and, more importantly, that we just don't have enough cases to study: gay couples raising children are a very recent phenomenon).
    In 2008 i published an article titled Why i voted against "gay" marriage and readers accused me of being a bigot and of hating gays. I was just being rational and pointing out that society was opening a can of worms.
    TM, ®, Copyright © 2015 Piero Scaruffi All rights reserved.
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  • (october 2015) Congratulations NRA on another well-executed massacre.

    A deranged man, Chris Mercer, has killed nine people in Oregon. People like him kill simply because they can: gun-friendly law make it easy for them to arm themselves to the teeth. The fact that some of them go on a rampage and kill a few innocent bypassers or schoolchildren comes as no surprise to the rest of the world: put 100 million guns in any nation of the world, and you'll have the same outcome. A 2015 study showed that life expectancy in the USA is lower than in most Western countries before of gun-related deaths .
    Imagine an age in which Al Qaeda or ISIS or Boko Haram is legal in the USA, has its headquarters in the USA, can buy advertising on TV and newspapers, can even bribe politicians to pass terrorism-friendly laws and has thousands of members who are perfectly free to be members of a terrorist organization. That's precisely what the National Rifle Association is, and it is way bigger and better funded than any of those Islamic terrorist organizations. What do you suggest we do if Al Qaeda or ISIS establishes a basis in the USA? What should we do to the politicians that allow it to happen?
    During the negotiations with Iran on the nuclear issue, a few Republican politicians showed their disgust at the idea that the USA was negotiating with a country guilty of killing US soldiers. Iran never killed a US soldier, but armed the Shiite militias in Iraq that did kill US soldiers. The Republican politicians who think that funding killers makes Iran a killer should apply the same logic to the National Rifle Association, that has armed many more killers who have killed many more US citizens than Iran or anyone else ever dreamed of doing. If it's ok to bomb Iran for arming our enemies, what should we do to the NRA for arming people who killed many more US citizens?
    See this article. I am tired of writing the same article over and over again.

    TM, ®, Copyright © 2015 Piero Scaruffi All rights reserved.
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  • (september 2015) The demise of the dollar has been wildly exaggerated.
    Not long ago economists were fond of writing articles like this one ("Why the Dollar's Reign Is Near an End", Barry Eichengreen, Wall Street Journal, 2011). Quote: "There will soon be two viable alternatives, in the form of the euro and China's yuan." Since then the euro has collapsed from 1.4 to almost parity with the dollar (1.1). The Chinese currency was devalued by its government in August 2015, and even before that it hadn't exactly skyrocket: it had improved from 0.15 to 0.16, i.e. 1%, in five years. The Russian rouble has collapsed: it is worth literally half of what it was worth in January 2009. Since 2012 the Japanese yen has lost nearly a third of its value. The Canadian dollar has fallen to a six-year low. The Australian dollar has been plunging so fast that some predict it will soon be worth half of what it was at the peak a few years ago. You can find historical data at Oanda. I travel all over the world and i have never seen any currency trader displaying the value of the Chinese yuan other than in countries neighboring China. Long-term it is hard to predict anything, but given the instability in the eurozone and the instability in East Asia, it is hard to see which would be the political or economic drivers that would cause a worldwide divestment from the dollar.

    Political and economic commentators have a short memory, and none of them seems to remember that a few years ago they were predicting massive unemployment and very high inflation in the USA because of the huge national debt and of the Federal Reserve printing money: "your dollars will be worthless" as a popular Fox News evening commentator shouted at his "liberal" guest. Lo and behold, in August 2015 the unemployment rate has fallen to 5.3% while inflation still remains stubbornly below the official target of 2%. Those who followed Fox News' recommendations to get rid of their dollars are now contemplating their worthless foreign currencies and gold savings.

    I remember headlines such as "The Collapse of the Dollar and How To Profit From It". All over the web these "experts" are frantically trying to remove their articles, interviews and videos that predicted a catastrophic collapse of the dollar and a catastrophic rise in inflation. The modest regime of Zimbabwe, certainly not a welcome guest at the White House, used common sense and, instead, in June 2015 decided to withdraw of its own currency and simply adopt the US dollar. Apparently ageing African dictators know better than young exuberant Western economists.

    TM, ®, Copyright © 2015 Piero Scaruffi All rights reserved.
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  • (july 2015) The month that changed the USA.
    One after the other, two Supreme Court decisions, the one that upheld "Obamacare" (i.e. socialist medicine) and the one that upheld same-sex marriage, reshaped the USA. One madman who carried out a massacre in the South also contributed to reshaping the USA because the aftermath consisted mostly in the South burying once and forever every vestige of the Civil War (that was fought, ostensibly, over slavery). Some called it "the final surrender". At the same time, the USA and Cuba normalized their relations after more than 50 years of hostilities, and the president of Vietnam's Communist Party visited Obama in Washington: the Cold War is officially over. At the same time, less publicized but no less important in the long term, the Republican-controlled Congress did precisely what it had promised not to do: it granted Obama fast-track trade authority. The Trans-Pacific Partnership signals not only the end of any hope by the US proletariat to ever matter again in national politics but also a true shift from Europe to Asia (the "Asian pivot" that Obama prophesized).
    Of course, between the lines one can see that little has changed: "Obamacare" (the Affordable Care Act) is a mess and far from providing universal coverage; same-sex marriage is not a big deal compared with the process of disintegration of the traditional family that has been going on since the 1960s; slavery would not have existed without the Northern capitalism that made money out of its agricultural exports and that Northern capitalism is alive and kicking and simply exploiting other forms of inequality (and in any case the real issue behind the recent massacre was guns and not slavery); the "Asian pivot" has been underway since Obama became president; and Cuba began to change course with the economic reforms of 2010.
    If you think that Obama has more critics than supporters in foreign policy, think again. The polls might show it that way, but a president who embraced the "energetic" foreign policy of past presidents would be buried in the polls. That is another transformation that has been going on mostly unnoticed: the USA got out of the spirit of World War II, the spirit of the liberator and of the defender of freedom. The voters may consider Obama a weak president in foreign policy, but they would not vote for a "hawk": from now on the USA wants a weak president in foreign policy. For the foreseeable future Obama's motto "Don't do Stupid Stuff" is likely to become the winning motto of any future president, Democrat or Republican. Any Republican who runs for president by promising to bomb Iran or invade Syria is certain to be defeated. Heisenhower staged the coup in Iran that ended Iran's democracy and installed the shah, with the only result of creating the premises for the revolution that created the USA's #1 enemy in the Middle East. Kennedy tacitly approved the "Bay of Pigs" invasion of Cuba which, failing, laid the foundations for 50 years of hostility between Cuba and the USA, including the closest we have ever come to nuclear war (the Cuban missile crisis of 1962). In 1964 Johnson invaded Vietnam using the fabricated Tonkin incident with the sole result of losing a war (the first war lost by the USA in its entire history). Nixon bombed Cambodia, killing tens of thousands of civilians, and in 1973 approved a coup in Chile to oust the democratically elected president, Allende; both events that created two genocidal evils (the Khmer Rouge in Cambodia and Pinochet's fascist regime in Chile). Reagan invaded Lebanon, only to be kicked out in 1984 (and Osama bin Laden learned from this episode), funded the Islamic fundamentalists willing to fight the Soviet Union in Afghanistan (some of which joined Osama bin Laden to start Al Qaeda) and in 1980 supported Saddam Hussein against Iran, the same Saddam Hussein against whom the USA would end up fighting two costly wars in 1991 and 2003. George W Bush epitomized the dangers of interventionism with the wars he started (and didn't finish) in Afghanistan (2001) and Iraq (2003), while supporting Israeli wars in Lebanon (2006) and Gaza (2008). The USA is unlikely to go back to doing "stupid stuff". Bill Clinton was guilty of inaction in Rwanda, Bosnia and Chechnya, and Obama has been guilty of inaction in Ukraine, Syria, Iraq and Libya; and the voters like it that way. The world will have to find itself a new policeman.
    Add to this that the legalization of light drugs like marijuana has been happening without any major rebellion. And lurking ahead is climate change: 67% of US citizens now agree that global warming is real (Pew Poll 2014). Hispanic immigrants are slowly but steadily turning the USA into a Catholic country; and, last but not least, for the first time in the history of the USA, a woman (Hillary Clinton) is leading in the polls to become the next president.
    The question is, if this is a revolution, "who has been defeated?" The short answer is: older male white conservatives. On all of these issues that is the category that tends to side on the opposite side. For liberals, minorities, millennials (young people) and women this is not a revolution but a mere adjustment to the reality of the 21st century. At the 2012 presidential election, 71% of Latinos voted for Barack Obama, 73% of Asian-Americans also voted Democrat, along with 93% of African-Americans, 66% of millennials and 67% of unmarried women. On the other hand, 59% of white voters (including 51% of white women) voted for Obama's Republican opponent, the older white male conservative Mitt Romney. A breakdown of that 59% shows a peak over the age of 30: Romney would have won the popular vote if only people over 30 had voted.
    Republicans such as Ted Cruz, Mike Huckabee and Rick Santorum will keep preaching to these white conservatives and they will keep getting a share of the national vote that will justify their career (and their various book and television deals) until they retire, but the Republican party itself has probably moved on. It is now officially pointless to run on a platform on Obamacare repeal, Christian values, southern nostalgia, etc. When young folks study Quantum Mechanics and Evolutionary Biology, and go on to work in scientific labs or biotech startups, they are much less likely to go to a Christian (or, for that matter, Muslim) church where the Republican candidate is promoted for free. Republicans are now officially out of touch with the times. Jeb Bush famously quipped that "Way too many people believe Republicans are anti-immigrant, anti-woman, anti-science, anti-gay..." But that's precisely what Republicans have been. The winner of the Republican primaries will be much more likely to campaign on infrastructure than on health care; and on city crime than on same-sex marriage; etc. I wouldn't be surprised if the Republican candidate, after lambasting Obamacare as "socialist", would go on to propose some kind of subsidies for education, whose skyrocketing cost is one thing that definitely irks the traditional family; and i wouldn't be surprised if the Republican candidate (this time or next time) were someone from Silicon Valley. I wouldn't be surprised if the Republican candidate, after depicting "climate change" as an anti-capitalist witch-hunt, were the first one to propose stricter limits on carbon emission.
    The Republican Party needs to get away from its "WASP" image. White Anglo-Saxon Protestants (WASPs) are no longer dominant. In fact, the ethnic revolution was already visible for those who wanted to see it in the 2012 elections: a black man (Barack Obama) and a Catholic (Joe Biden) faced a Mormon (Mitt Romney) and another Catholic (Paul Ryan). For the first time there was no WASP on either ticket. Both the old and new speakers of the House of Representatives are Catholics: Nancy Pelosi and John Boehner. The majority leader of the Senate was a Mormon (Harry Reid) until 2014 (when he was replaced by a WASP, Mitch McConnell). Since 2010 none of the nine judges of the Supreme Court has been a WASP: they are six Catholics (Antonin Scalia, Anthony Kennedy, Clarence Thomas, John Roberts, Samuel Alito, Sonia Sotomayor) and three Jews (Stephen Breyer, Ruth Ginsburg, Elena Kagan).
    Because of the weird law used to elect a president (in theory he is elected by an "electoral college", not by the people), what matters in the USA is not the popular vote but the "electoral" vote. Some states consistently vote for the Democratic Party candidate, and they constitute what some call the "Democratic Blue Wall": California (55), Connecticut (7), Delaware (3), Hawaii (4), Illinois (20), Maine (4), Maryland (10), Massachusetts (11), Michigan (16), Minnesota (10), New Jersey (14), New York (29), Oregon (7), Pennsylvania (20), Rhode Island (4), Vermont (3), Washington (12), Washington DC (3), Wisconsin (10). The total number of electoral votes from these states is very close to the magic number of 270: you become president if you win 271.
    Reagan invented an unlikely coalition of Christian conservatives, foreign-policy hawks and capitalists. Obama invented an unlikely coalition of minorities, millennials, workers and unmarried women. Hillary Clinton's coalition could prove to be even more formidable than the Obama coalition because she is likely to get the majority of votes among white women of all ages. The color of her skin matters: being white instead of black, she will attract the votes of white women who didn't like Obama's skin color, and she might even attract more male white voters than Obama.
    The Republican Party certainly knows all of this without reading it here. They know that the mid-term elections of 2014 was not"the latest manifestation of a resurgent Republican coalition" (as John Judis famously wrote) but a weird side-effect of district gerrymandering: the Republicans lost on pretty much every social issue that was presented to the voters in "propositions" (referendums) even if they won both houses of Congress. It won't last, and they know it, unless the Republican Party accepts that the USA is a different country from the one that was founded and ruled by white male conservatives.
    TM, ®, Copyright © 2015 Piero Scaruffi All rights reserved.
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  • (june 2015) Countries that sponsor terrorism.
    The USA finally removed Cuba from the list of "state sponsors of terror". People all over the world roll their eyes when they are told that Cuba was officially considered for decades a state sponsor of terrorism by the USA. What terrorism was Cuba sponsoring? Nobody has the answer, but some corrupt politicians win votes in the USA if they show this kind of, frankly, terrorizing behavior towards Cuba.
    On the other hand, there is little doubt that Pakistan has supported and is supporting several terrorist organizations, including the one (Lashkar-e-Taiba) that killed 164 people in Mumbai in 2008 (Pakistan just released Zakiur Lakhvi, despite overwhelming evidence that he masterminded those attacks) and including the Taliban in Afghanistan.
    There is also little doubt that Saudi Arabia has been helping all sorts of terrorist groups over the years, starting with Al Qaeda (that carried out the 2001 attacks in the USA). It is telling that Saudi Arabia is bombing the Houthi rebels in Yemen, rebels who have not harmed civilians but simply overthrown a corrupt and inefficient government (that both Saudi Arabia and the USA calls "the legitimate government of Yemen" even though is was neither democratically elected nor loved by the people); while at the same time Saudi Arabia is not bombing Al Qaeda, a terrorist group which controls an increasing region of southern Yemen.
    And, in case you wonder where ISIS' passion for beheading comes from, check out what the government of Saudi Arabia did to Siti Zainab, an Indonesian maid who revolted against the rich Saudi "employer" who enslaved her. Beheadings have been routine in the kingdom founded by Abdul al-Aziz ibn Saud, who had 20 wives and actively supported the puritanical Wahabi order (the Islamic order that inspired the Taliban, Al Qaeda, ISIS, Al Shahab and Boko Haram).
    Finally, there is little doubt that Israel has killed more than 1,000 civilians in Gaza and a similar number in Lebanon in two senseless wars.
    There is enough damning evidence to show that Putin orchestrated terrorist attacks in Russia and then blamed them on Chechen terrorists. Putin and his friends physically own Russia and live above the law: Russia is de facto ruled by gangsters armed with nuclear weapons, thanks to Western banks that launder their money. (See Comparing Russia's and Western Europe's Kleptocracies).
    Turkey still denies the Armenian genocide of a century ago, and tacitly supported ISIS during its rapid expansion.
    Japan still doesn't recognize the rape of Nanjing and many other atrocities committed during World War II in Asia.
    The organization that can pride itself on having killed the highest number of US citizens is the National Rifle Organization, based in the USA: its money buys the votes of politicians to pass legislation that makes it easy to own a gun and shoot citizens.
    However, the USA maintained Cuba, and none of these countries, on the list of states sponsoring terrorism, which only proves how out of touch the US Congress is: these parochial senators and representatives are totally clueless about what goes on in the world. The Roman Empire had a similarly corrupt and idiotic Senate, but at least those Roman senators did know something about the world.
    TM, ®, Copyright © 2015 Piero Scaruffi All rights reserved.
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    TM, ®, Copyright © 2015 Piero Scaruffi All rights reserved.
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  • (january 2015) Invite president Hassan Rouhani .
    The US Congress has invited "congenital liar" Benjamin Netanyahu to give a speech in Washington. (Why "congenital liar"? See What Netanyahu and Putin have in common and The art of inventing inexistent wars). That is a honor rarely bestowed on foreign leaders. It is clearly intended to influence the public opinion of the USA and justify spending more billions of taxpayers dollars to launch some other war in Israel's interest. The excuse is the usual one: Israel is the only democracy in the Middle East. And never mind that the excuse doesn't work anymore: Iraq has fair and free elections, and Turkey has been a democracy for even longer (Egypt is not a democracy because Israel and the USA supported the overthrow of the democratically elected president, otherwise it would be). If you don't like the results of an election, it doesn't make the election "undemocratic": it makes you a sore loser. There have been various kinds of elections throughout the Middle East and i am not even sure that the Israeli ones are the most democratic ones (Arab citizens are treated like second-class citizens and the occupied West Bank is not allowed to vote at all).
    Netanyahu doesn't really care how many people get killed in Syria or Libya. He is coming to Washington to repeat his obsession with Iran. He views Iran as the biggest threat to Israel, and he is right. But not because of the nuclear weapons (Israel has them, why shouldn't Iran be allowed to have them?) The real reason why Netanyahu is paranoid about Iran is what would happen to Israel in a world in which the USA and Iran are friends.
    Since 2001 it has been obvious to any external objective observer that the USA and Iran have enemies in common: Iran was the only country to fight the Taliban before 2001 and Iran was the country that fought a long and bloody war against Saddam Hussein in the 1980s. When the USA attacked those two, the USA was simply following in the footsteps of Iran. No wonder therefore that Iran became the main beneficiary of George W Bush's wars. Bush removed Iran's most dangerous neighbor (Saddam Hussein) and Iran's most serious long-term threat (the Taliban, another Sunni fanatical movement that views Shiites as mortal enemies). No wonder that eventually Iran, under a new president, decided to sit down with the USA and try to negotiate some kind of agreement about its nuclear program. Netanyahu might be honestly worried about Iran's nuclear program (and of course he avoids mentioning that Iran must be worried about Israel's much more advanced nuclear program) but he is probably also worried about the possibility that the USA and Iran become buddies again. Before the revolution that ousted the shah and installed the current Shiite theocracy, Iran was the USA's most reliable ally in the region. When Iran fell, Israel took its place. Israel has made a fortune out of that 1979 revolution in Iran.
    The bottom line is that Netanyahu is willing to do anything to disrupt any reapproachment between the USA and Iran. The first beneficiary has been ISIS (See ISIS thanks Turkey and Israel). Anybody could write the speech that Netanyahu will give to the US Congress: a long litany against "terrorism" (omitting that his government has killed more civilians in Gaza than all terrorists combined in the West) and the warning that Iran is about to build its first nuclear bomb, thereby subliminally associating Islamist terrorism and a nuclear Iran (and never mind that all known Islamist groups ferociously massacre Shiites, and that Iran is the main Shiite state). It would be interesting, though, to hear Iran's version of the facts too. It would be interesting to hear how Iran would respond to Netanyahu, to hear Iran's view of the world (and Iran's view of Israel). It is not only Iran that thinks Israel has been fooling the USA, pretending to be a staunch ally while de facto sabotaging the reputation of the USA. The whole Middle East thinks that Israel is the USA's worst enemy in the region. The whole Middle East thinks that all problems start with the Palestinian issue, and Israel consistently does everything it can to make sure that no peace deal can be achieved, i.e. that the issue remains open. It would not hurt if the public opinion of the USA heard this other version of the facts.
    China is rolling its eyes: China keeps warning the USA about North Korea's nuclear program, both because that regime is unreliable and because it has missiles that could hit South Korea, Japan, and, lo and behold, the USA. (See for example this article). Why is the USA so obsessed with distant Iran and not with much closer North Korea? China must be truly puzzled that both the foreign and domestic policies of the USA are dictated by a small country like Israel.
    The previous president of Iran, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, was indeed a bit deranged (although he too had some valid points, which he gladly made whenever a US television channel offered to interview him, even on Fox News), but the new president, Hassan Rouhani, earned a PhD in Constitutional Law from a British university. Yes, he also led Iran's nuclear program, and, personally, i tend to believe that he repeatedly outsmarted the West and greatly advanced that program. Whether he is sincere in negotiating with the USA i cannot know. What i do know is that the Republicans are going out of their way to make sure that his voice is never heard in the USA: why not invite Hassan Rouhani too to give a speech to the US Congress? If not him, at least the king of Jordan, a country that is fighting ISIS directly and risking retaliation for offering its bases to the USA? What are the Republicans afraid of? Why are they so keen on making sure that the US public hears ONLY the Israeli version of the facts? Why are they so keen on making the US public think about the Iranian nuclear bombs (that don't exist yet and couldn't hit the USA anyway) and not about the North Korean nuclear bombs (that do exist and that could hit the USA)?


    A few readers emailed me asking me basically the same question "How can we invite to Washington the president of a country that just instituted a context for the best "holocaust denier drawing"?
    My answer:
    1. It is not the president of Iran that has organized that context, it is an obscure "Iran's House of Cartoon and the Sarcheshmeh Cultural Complex" or, better, its director Masud Shojaei-Tabatabaii.
    2. There are many many many psychos in every Western country. The list would be too long. We also have our own holocaust deniers See "Measuring Holocaust Denial In The United States" (Harvard University, 2010), and much worse people (suprematists who want to exterminate all blacks, for example) not too mention all sorts of ridiculous conspiracy theories. If we decided not to invite the presidents of all the countries that have at least one psycho doing something ridiculous, we would not allow our own president to speak.
    3. Perhaps the reason that so many people in the Islamic world are ready to doubt the Holocaust is precisely that it has become a dogma. Let's have the conference on the Holocaust that Ahmadinejad wanted to organize, with scholars from both the Western and Islamic world to talk about it. I suspect it will help dispel the conspiracy theories. But there will always be people who deny the Holocaust just like in Italy an impressive % of the population believes that Neil Armstrong never landed on the Moon and that Bush put bombs in the World Trade Center.
    4. Note that the cartoons are about making fun of an event that (in their opinion) did not happen. The cartoons are not about making fun of people exterminated in that event (that they think never happened). So technically speaking the cartoons are not even anti-Semitic, but anti-Western-propaganda (what they perceive as being Western propaganda).
    5. Anyway, it would be interesting to have the president of Iran speak at the US Congress so the hardcore Israeli supporters can ask him the simple question: "Do you believe that the Holocaust happened"? And many other questions.
    6. Denying the Holocaust does not kill people. Netanyahu's lies have killed people.

    TM, ®, Copyright © 2015 Piero Scaruffi All rights reserved.
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  • (january 2015) The USA is a banana republic..
    When in 1981 Ronald Reagan struck military sanctions against Israel, guilty of bombing Saddam Hussein's nuclear reactor without the approval of the USA (Reagan was half a fan of Saddam Hussein, who was fighting a war against Iran), Israel's prime minister Begin is said to have reminded the USA that Israel was not a "banana republic" but an independent sovereign state.
    We wish the USA could tell Israel the same in 2015: that the USA is not a banana republic. Israel's prime minister does what he wants in the USA, and tells the USA what to do in the world. This banana republic with capital in Washington is largely run by a corrupt and idiotic Republican Party (not even remotely related to the Republican Party of Ronald Reagan), whose members are willing to do anything in exchange for money that will help them get reelected. These highly-paid prostitutes of the Republican Party would even invite a terrorist to Washington, if the sum was big enough. In fact, they may have just invited one of the most dangerous of all terrorists, a man who would not hesitate to destroy the USA if it served his political career in Israel: Israel's prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
    The USA should stop talking about bombing Iran and start seriously talking about bombing Israel before Israel topples the government of the USA. Israel's prime minister likes to say that Israel, surrounded by enemies, is fighting for its survival. It is time that the USA too, cornered by a deadly enemy (Israel), starts fighting for its survival. Instead of the pathetic sight of US lawmakers (alas, elected by us) giving regular standing ovations to the condescending speech of a charlatan and megalomaniac it would be nice to see US lawmakers grant the president of the USA the authority to strike Israel whenever this little Mussolini threatens the interests of the USA. It would also be nice to see the Israeli people throw out this man who keeps embarrassing their country. The US is being naive in trusting Israel, that is fundamentally untrustworthy.
    TM, ®, Copyright © 2015 Piero Scaruffi All rights reserved.
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