EDITORIAL
In the Internet Era, It's Harder to Make Memes
By Anthony Wile - December 19, 2015

International Business Times has posted an article entitled, "US did not trigger Arab Spring, Obama says."

Obama's denial was made in an end-of-year news conference at the White House in Washington on December 18, 2015. President Obama commented on Syria, the Arab Spring and on terrorism, among other topics, according to newswires. Here's more from IBT:

US President Barack Obama justified the American position on promoting regime change in the Middle East during the Arab Spring, but maintained that the United States did not trigger the movement.

At his year-end press conference on Friday, Obama hit out at arguments by some Republican Party members that American security had become vulnerable because of regime changes in countries such as Libya and Egypt.

Responding to a journalist's query if he would advise future presidents to call for authoritarian leaders to step down, Obama said that the United States should "speak out on behalf of its values".

Obama was forceful in his denial, explaining, "We didn't trigger the Arab Spring." He stated the US "did not depose Hosni Mubarak" and characterized Mubarak's downfall as taking place because of "Millions of Egyptians [dissatisfied] with the corruption and authoritarianism of the regime."

Obama "defended his decision to participate in coalition airstrikes in Libya" that helped topple the dictator but also admitted the US had left a power vacuum in the region by "not moving fast enough."

He added that Qaddafi had toppled because he was already illegitimate in the eyes of his people, not because the US, NATO and domestic insurgents had pushed him out.

But the consequences of the US and the international community not being more forceful after Qaddafi's death led to what Obama termed "a very bad situation."

Obama was emphatic about Syria, too, stating that, "Assad is going to have to leave in order for the country to stop the bloodletting and for all the parties involved to be able to move forward in a non-sectarian way. He has lost legitimacy in the eyes of a large majority of the country."

This seems to contradict statements made earlier in the week by Secretary of State John Kerry on Tuesday after a meeting with Vladimir Putin, as reported by AP:

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry on Tuesday accepted Russia's long-standing demand that President Bashar Assad's future be determined by his own people, as Washington and Moscow edged toward putting aside years of disagreement over how to end Syria's civil war.

"The United States and our partners are not seeking so-called regime change," Kerry told reporters in the Russian capital after meeting President Vladimir Putin.

Kerry seems to have been clear about the change in the US stance, as reported by AP. "He described the Syrian opposition's demand that Assad must leave as soon as peace talks begin as a 'nonstarting' position, obviously."

As we can see, Obama's comments seem at odds with what Kerry said only a few days before. Either the US wants regime change or it doesn't. Kerry "accepted" the Russian position that Assad could stay or go based on the will of his own people. Obama, in his statements, was clear that Assad should leave.

This confusion extends to Obama's statements on the Arab Spring as well. He claims that the Arab Spring was not a product of the US and Mubarak's fall was an Egyptian phenomenon.

This contradicts a great deal of reporting in the alternative media, including our own reporting here at The Daily Bell. And the history of Arab Spring movements is now subject to books as well as on-the-ground journalism.

In October of this year, well-respected alternative media 'Net publisher Global Research posted a review of a book by Ahmed Bensaada entitled, The Arab Spring: Made in the USA.

From the review:

It concerns the US government role in instigating, funding and coordinating the Arab Spring "revolutions" … The new book devotes much more attention to the personalities leading the 2011 uprisings. Some openly admitted to receiving CIA funding. Others had no idea because it was deliberately concealed from them.

The book concludes that none of the Arab Spring movements were spontaneous but that "all required careful and lengthy (5+ years) planning and coordinating by the State Department" and other groups.

According to the review, Bensaada relied on multiple original sources including "WikiLeaks cables and the websites of key CIA pass through foundations." Bensaada lists the foundations in the appendix.

Bensaada methodically lists every State Department conference and workshop the Arab Spring heroes attended, the dollar amounts spent on them by the State Department and key "democracy" promoting foundations, the specific involvement of Google, Facebook, Twitter and Obama's 2008 Internet campaign team in training Arab Spring cyberactivists …

It is getting harder and harder for officials to simply state a version of reality that significantly diverges from facts that have already been reported. It is easy in this Internet era to find multiple points of view and to make up one's own mind as to which versions are backed by evidence and which are not.

This mechanism is operative from an investment standpoint as well. The Federal Reserve officials recently hiked rates by a quarter point after stating that the US was on the road to recovery and thus currency demand was rising.

But in an article we profiled recently in staff reports, Dr. Craig Paul Roberts made the point that banks had plenty of cash reserves that were not being drawn down. In other words, the cited demand did not exist. He writes:

Look at it this way. The banking system as a whole does not need to borrow, as it is sitting on $2.42 trillion in excess reserves. The negative impact of the "rate hike" affects only smaller banks that are lending to businesses and consumers.

In the 20th century, it was hard to check official statements. But in the 21st century, the Internet has made such fact checking a good deal more convenient. As a result, Western institutions find it more difficult to reshape history.

This is probably the reason that the approval ratings in the US for Congress are in the single digits. I would suspect that at this moment Europeans don't feel much better about Brussels. When it comes to investing, we should be especially careful to ascertain that what we are being told is true.

Political untruths can confuse us and make it more difficult for us to understand what is going on in the world. But untruths about economics and investing can cost us money, sometimes a good deal.

Generally when it comes to statements by authorities these days, one can surely follow the old dictum, "trust but verify." Fortunately, the Internet lets us do so. We should use it for these purposes, among others.

Posted in EDITORIAL
  • FauxScienceSlayer

    “Intel Expert, New Doc Confirms Hillary Gunrunning Op” by Dr Jerome Corsi at WorldNetDaily explains CIA Operation Zero Footprint,

    Illegally shipping weapons to Tunisia, Yemen, Egypt, Libya and to ISIS in Syria. Obombia meme is Multilevel Information Racketeering.

  • dlw2010

    The “Sham” that has been put forth by the President, the Secretary and Congress is meant to hide the true intentions of the New World Order via the Incorporated Federal Government established in 1868 following the Civil War. One must understand who owns this Incorporated Federal Government that has replaced our Republic, and wherein Maritime Law rules both the Land and Seas unconstitutionally. One must understand how our “Legal System,” has replaced our Common Laws with Corporate Law that rules over us via the Flag of Old Glory, a Flag of War. Why is this Incorporated Federal Government at war with its own people? This is simple to understand, as We, the People, are the slaves of this Corporation known as, “THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA.” Our Republic of the united States of America does not exists and has not since the Civil War. So why be surprised when nothing is truly done by Congress except raise taxes.

  • “Generally when it comes to statements by authorities these days, one can surely follow the old dictum, “trust but verify.” Fortunately, the Internet lets us do so. We should use it for these purposes, among others.”

    Unfortunately, most people do not bother to make the effort.

    • Rather than ‘trust but verify’ I would say ‘listen to but verify’ – and my discernment is the final word in this wherever information comes from. There has always been a very strong movement to let others lead whenever it seems to suit us – and the hate them and assert a kind of leadership over them by invalidating and ‘knowing better than they do’. These are two sides of a coin.

      This can be put as playing the child-dependent and the adolescent-independent in such a way as to avoid the adult presence of communication of equals.

      This can also be seen in the ‘left’ seeking to be protected and the ‘right’ seeking to be free of any constricting imposition.

      People come to invest and believe their own spin – but they are not the mask they wear – and so whatever the mask ‘does’ is not the true communication of the true presence beneath it. learning to read what is beneath the surface is a different kind of listening than merely judging someone as unworthy or invalid – which then blocks further possibility of communication.

      Human beings are fragmented consciousness where compartments operate in specific conditions and triggers according to the survival needs imprinted or conditioned in that one – or that group or organisation.

      But survival in terms of fragmentation is the denial of communication in the assertion and protection of a partial truth or falsehood.

      If the USA openly admitted its involvement and propagation of destabilizing influence in the Middle East – or anywhere else for that matter – it would see itself very seriously breached and weakened in its ability to persist in influencing outcomes favourable to its most powerful lobbies. The nearest you get is an admission that mistakes were made or sins of omission.

      What is said in public is different from what may be said in private is different from what may be thought in private is different from who you are.

      Living an example of congruity speaks not just in surface terms but as a tangible presence. Then the words of such a one hold more power than spin because they are not persuasive or coercive – but communicative and informative. I am not saying one’s presence is a better way of manipulating outcomes – but that manipulated outcomes are dishonest.

      The Internet may become much more polluted with disinfo, Subverted to all kinds of polarized bias, and such a means of surveillance and punishment – as to have lost its honeymoon period. Therefore to cultivate discernment – which is the natural result of self-honesty, is the primary sanity in a flood of lies and half truths primed with fear and guilt agenda. This does not set in identity politics – but stays open to what is being communicated beneath the distortions and to ‘read between the lines’.

      I wonder if ‘most people’ have the wherewithal to operate outside the spell that they are under. One can only reach those who are open enough to be stirred from such a mesmerism. To ‘most people’ anything you say will be taken in different meaning to your intent and used as ammunition against you. Free willingness is there to awaken – but an imposition upon the will has almost smothered it.

  • What are ‘memes’? Self-replicating idea given belief?

    Untruths serving hidden agenda that ‘take’ and become a basis or foundation of response and reaction – thus framing the narrative?

    Are there ‘positive memes that operate symbolic truths regardless they are not in a literal sense ‘true’? In other words are there outer events or circumstances that trigger or activate deeper archetypes of an integrative consciousness?

    Are the ideas that in effect are the currency definitions of our communication and agreement anything that can be gotten to capture or attract agreement and belief – or will idea that do not have support in a deeper inherent purpose of Life dissolve or fade and require bolstering or propping up with a coercive intent – whereas ideas that are aligned with true purpose need no force of will (force upon will) to make them ‘true’.

    The idea that truth is what we make it is the idea that might is right, though clearly each of our experience of Life – and our collective result of mutually reinforced definitions and agreements is what we make OF it. But ‘it’ is before us or prior to the meddlesome mind that can believe its own spin and thus spin off into painful and conflicting ‘realities’.

    The persona is a mask that operates different levels – one of which is to mask or hide from our self – or at least the self we fear to know. And the surface that projects away from self in hiding from and presenting to, others and the world.

    Concepts of self and world operate a conforming, filtering and rejecting prism upon the Life that is both transcendent of concept and immanent as the original movement of being.

    Rather than use insight to increase hate and blame of those who are found to be manipulative upon us, we may expand it to the recognize the core distortion in which we participate and propagate no less. That does not mean not to address lack of integrity – but rather to seek to do so from a shared integrity rather than a mirror reflection claiming righteousness.

    The illusion of power can be withdrawn and disappear when its props and facade is exposed. The power of illusion is of accepting and choosing ideas and perspectives in which the power of Life is consciously appreciated and extended or shared, and reflected in the culture that grows in alignment with it. True currency is not spun out of pretence presented as true.

  • Heywood Jablome

    Does anyone put any credence in the mendacious posturing of these key players who bloviate to the media, from inside the beltway. These liars have been exposed so many times that it surprises me that anyone with a modicum of common sense and media awareness, puts any store in what they say. The whole notion of democracy, in its present form, and to a lesser degree, its adjunct corporate mercantilism, are increasingly becoming revealed for the perfidious constructs that they are, and in this day of electronic and immediate information satiation, more thoroughly revealed to a greater constituency.

  • Praetor

    Egyptians> dissatisfied with the corruption and authoritarianism! Libya> Libyan leader illegitimate in the eyes of Libya’s people! Obama, must be the stupidest leader on the planet. If the qualifications for removal of a countries leader is corruption, authoritarianism and illegitimacy in the eyes of the people. You could surmise, that Obama could be thrown in jail or thrown to the dogs in the streets. These be the qualifications for leadership change, well, Obama and the rest of the leaders of every country on earth should be in for a change, because everyone of them is corrupt, authoritarian and illegitimate in the eyes of their people. Gawd these guy is stupid. Internet Reformation!!!

  • jim

    If we accept the dual premise that Obama is a mere programmed puppet together with the parlous geopolitical corner into which the US has painted itself, it seems his puppeteers may simply be walking their marionette into taking the fall as America’s chief war criminal.
    In that regard, any of our so-called leaders in denial of the breath-taking shift of global power taking place – and who cannot sense the need to run for cover, lest he be tagged as a ringleader of this disaster – could likely soon be taking the fall for America’s long list of crimes against humanity.

  • 2bvictorius

    Obama did what any politician does when presented with the option of telling the truth or lying, he lied and so will John Kerry if confronted about his published statement on the subject.
    Politicians and corporate leaders lie partly because the general public refuse to hold them accountable and pay a price for lying, but the primary reason is it is part of their DNA and is not curable. .

  • spekulatn
  • Samarami

    ‘…when it comes to statements by authorities these days,
    one can surely follow the old dictum, “trust but verify.”
    Fortunately, the Internet lets us do so. We should use it
    for these purposes, among others…’

    I’ll call and raise:

    “…never trust, but recognize ‘authorities’ for what they are: psychopaths ( http://pilotsfor911truth.org/forum/index.php?showtopic=12430 ) with whom belief can be the most dangerous superstition of them all…”

    http://www.mensenrechten.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/05/the-most-dangerous-superstition-larken-rose-20111.pdf

    Gratefully, I’m living in a time when more and more ordinary folks can connect to the internet. In time — and with a modicum of study and sorting-out — they become capable of seeing exactly what it is they’re dealing with. Thank the internet reformation for that. (Sorry — I just noticed I linked a “DB Definition” to which Mr. Wile had already linked in the article).

    Sam

  • LawrenceNeal

    Why do America and it’s friends have ‘administrations’, while it’s enemies have ‘regimes?

    US regime role in instigating, funding and coordinating unrest in other countries is all pervasive. The psychopaths that direct Washington want chaos, death and destruction, all part of their Population Reduction Agenda.

  • Talking of memes as we are …….. Weren’t eleven of the twelve September 11th 2001 hijackers, Saudis? Was the other remaining tool, an Iranian? So what do we here think of the chances of spectacular success of this fantastic, recently floated meme into the ether of premeditated maddeningly mediated media mayhem for continuity of class insanity with first degree chaos ….. 3,616 Relatives of 9/11 Victims Sue Iran for $Bs …… if the agenda relates to a convenient fiction with no base in actual action and honest to goodness true fact?

    Who else is thinking of Neros fiddling whilst Rome burns?

    PS …. Hi, DB. Is everyone posting here subject to comment premoderation/vetting/censorship? That’s a slippery slope which can all too easily lead very quickly to a loss of credibility and nowhere good, for it too easily morphs into a subversive fascism. It has certainly done so, history does tell, more than enough times in the past?

    First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out—
    Because I was not a Socialist.
    Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out—
    Because I was not a Trade Unionist.
    Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out—
    Because I was not a Jew.
    Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me.
    ….. Pastor Martin Niemöller

    • We don’t censor, just ask that people abide by the commentary guidelines.

      • Ok, thanks for that information, DB. It is reassuring. For a brief moment in the history of time there, was I thinking you were flirting with the dark side. 🙂

    • Pilgrim

      In response to your question whether eleven of the twelve were Saudis. The answer is NO. It was 15 out of 19 who were Saudis.

  • Pilgrim

    What a lying shak of sit. He knows darn well that “regime change” was the goal of his administration from the get-go. It was their oft-repeated mantra from the time he usurped office in 2009. In my opinion national power vacuums are precisely what they intended to create, knowing that it would be filled by radical “Arab Springers”. It was merely sold to the dupes in the American media as a popular uprising of people yearning to breathe free who would establish “democracies” where dictatorships then stood.

    January 2017 can’t come soon enough.

  • Danny B

    Dear Bell, the shop is closed for today but, I have a very interesting off-topic link. The Swiss are flirting with the idea of getting rid of fractional reserve banking; http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2015-12-24/switzerland-vote-ending-fractional-reserve-banking

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