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On a recent episode of “Intercepted,” Glenn Greenwald, James Risen, and Jeremy Scahill, three celebrity journalists employed by a billionaire to provide the masses with fearless, adversarial journalism, debated, for approximately fifty-seven minutes, whether Donald Trump might be guilty of treason. This debate was prompted by the negative response to Risen’s first investigative piece for The Intercept, “Is Donald Trump a Traitor?,” a lengthy rehashing of the official narrative the corporate ruling classes have been relentlessly disseminating for the last eighteen months. Dedicated readers of The Intercept had wondered aloud on social media how, exactly, this repetition of the evidence-free “Trump is a Putin Puppet” narrative qualified as fearlessly adversarial. Some had even gone so far as to suggest that Risen, a legend in the world of investigative and national security journalism, had been a bit reckless, ethically speaking, in throwing around words like “treason” and “traitor,” and in allowing his status as a journalistic legend to lend further credence to the most ridiculous official propaganda campaign since the “Saddam is stockpiling WMDs for al Qaeda to attack America with” hoax.

In any event, The Intercept, its brand identity under attack, sprang into action and arranged this debate. Scahill and Risen were live in New York, possibly at First Look’s Fifth Avenue studios, with Greenwald participating remotely from his home in the mountains above Rio de Janiero. Following a solemn introduction by Scahill, and after kowtowing to each other at considerable length, Greenwald and Risen get down to the work of defining the word “treason.” This takes twenty minutes. They then move on to ascertaining whether Greenwald believes, and will admit on camera, that “Russia intervened” in the 2016 elections. Mercilessly pressed on this point by Risen, he finally confesses that he probably believes that the Russians likely “did some things.” This takes up another twenty minutes. The rest of the episode is dedicated to establishing that Greenwald is not a Trump-loving pinko (despite his occasional appearances on FOX), and that Risen agrees that the general public (not to mention fearless, adversarial journalists) should not just accept whatever intelligence agencies tell them without supporting evidence. Scahill then wraps up the episode by joking about Greenwald getting paid in rubles and Risen getting paid by the CIA, and noting how “interesting” it is to be a fearless, adversarial journalist at a serious operation like The Intercept, where extremely affluent, award-winning colleagues are allowed to respectfully disagree about whether the President of the United States should be tried and executed for treason because some Russians bought some Facebook ads and said mean things about Hillary Clinton.

I realize you’ll probably want to break off now and go watch this thrilling debate yourself, but bear with me for just another few minutes, because this essay isn’t really about the debate, or The Intercept, or even First Look Media. Believe it or not, I’m a fan of Glenn Greenwald, who is one of the very few celebrity journalists who has had the guts to consistently challenge the ridiculous “Russiagate” narrative from the start. And just because The Intercept is owned by a neoliberal oligarch who backed a fascist coup in the Ukraine, micro-financed a few Indians to death, and employs a personal security detail of ex-Secret Service agents and State Department types who will fly him to safety in his private jet in the event of imminent zombie apocalpyse, that doesn’t mean The Intercept staff doesn’t publish important investigative journalism.

No, what struck me as I was suffering through this debate was how utterly divorced from reality it was, whatever “reality” might mean anymore. Watching Greenwald, Risen, and Scahill sitting there, like rational people, “debating” whether Donald Trump might be part of some convoluted Russian conspiracy to destroy America and Western democracy, I felt like I was finally having one of those apocryphal LSD flashbacks. It was as if I was watching these respected journalists debating whether the face of Jesus may have actually appeared on a breakfast taco at a daycare center in Beeville, Texas.

Now, I mean no offense to The Intercept, or Jesus, or even breakfast tacos. I’m simply trying to point out how, after eighteen months of relentless repetition, we have all been barraged with so much ridiculous “Russiagate” and “Collusion” propaganda that it is almost impossible to step back from it enough to recognize how ridiculous it is. Fundamentally. The basic premise of the narrative. Imagine for a moment, if you can, that you had never heard about “Russiagate,” and listen to the story concept as if you were hearing it for the very first time. Ready? OK, here it comes … “Donald Trump conspired with Putin to brainwash Americans with Internet ads into electing him President of the United States so he could help the Russians take over the world!” How is this story concept any more credible than the one where a radical Jewish prophet who’s been dead for over two thousand years, but who rules the universe with his omnipotent father, appeared on a taco in Beeville, Texas?

Well … OK, I’ll tell you how it’s more credible. It’s credible because “authoritative sources” say it is credible, over and over, and treat it as a “serious” story, in spite of how blatantly ridiculous it is. It’s not just the corporate media that does this. It’s also fearless, adversarial, “authoritative” organizations like The Intercept. I wish there were a more sophisticated theory I could set forth to explain this phenomenon, but, sadly, it really is that simple.

In any authoritarian society, social group, culture, or … cult, those with the power can make up pretty much any official narrative they want and get the members of the group to believe it, or at least conform their behavior to it. The social hierarchy does all the work. Cults provide the clearest example. The leaders come up with some ludicrous narrative (e.g., Helter Skelter, The House of David, Body Thetans from Outer Space, Transubstantiation, et cetera) which is reified by the “inner circle,” who conform their behavior and speech to this narrative, and then pressure the outer members to do likewise. Gradually, everyone gets the message: if you don’t want to be excommunicated, you had better believe, or pretend to believe, the official narrative of the cult. It isn’t a question of deception, belief, gullibility, or even intelligence. It is a question of power, social pressure, and fear of ostracization and exile. Anyone invested in any type of social group that functions along authoritarian lines is susceptible to this type of pressure, regardless of how savvy or intelligent they are.

Which brings me back to The Intercept and this debate about whether Trump is a traitor. If you have an hour to kill, try this experiment. Watch the debate, ignore what they’re saying, and pay attention to how they say it and the effect that is generated by how they say it. (You can also do this with any mainstream media political debate-type show, but assuming you’re as predisposed as I am to identify with The Intercept’s brand, it will be more instructive if you use this debate). What you’ll be watching is a simulation of “seriousness,” “authoritativeness,” and “credibility,” and a demonstration of how “respectable” journalists discuss a “legitimate, newsworthy” story (as opposed to, you know, a conspiracy theory).

In other words, you will be watching a performance … a performance intended to convince its audience that (a) the nonsense being “debated” is a “serious” story worthy of debate by serious, grown-up, authoritative journalists, (b) that there exists such a creature as a “serious, grown-up authoritative journalist,” and (c) that these serious, grown-up journalists, and the “authoritative sources” they rub elbows with, inhabit an exclusive “authoritative” realm populated by “serious people” deserving of our trust and deference.

As it just so happens, in this authoritative realm, where serious people (a/k/a “grown-ups”) are dealing with “real,” “adult” type matters that are none of our business, and which we wouldn’t understand, everyone is extremely well-paid. That’s one way you can tell they are serious. That, and various other hallmarks of “seriousness” and “respectability,” like their overuse of a certain type of adjective (i.e., the type I’ve been having fun with in this essay), important-sounding but meaningless adjectives like “major,” “serious,” “authoritative,” “well-respected,” “legitimate,” and so on. “Serious” people use these adjectives to refer to other “serious” people, or the views or statements of other “serious” people. The more ridiculous the propaganda they are pressuring you to take seriously is, the more they tend to overuse these words. Most of them do not do this consciously. They do it instinctively. They do it out of fear of being excommunicated from the Cult of Authority.

Which might explain why The Intercept has brought a legend like Risen on board to report the ridiculous Russiagate story from the viewpoint of serious, authoritative people, i.e., to balance out Greenwald’s “collusion rejectionism.” After all, at this point, the only people who continue to doubt that Donald Trump is somehow in league with Vladimir Putin and his plot to dominate the entire world by brainwashing folks with Facebook ads are Russian bots, Nazis, traitors, and other such non-authoritative persons. Given all the money they’re paying their journalists, First Look Media can hardly afford to allow them to be confused with that lot. Before too long, they would find themselves deranked, and would be reduced to writing for nothing. And who could possibly take them seriously then?

C. J. Hopkins is an award-winning American playwright, novelist and satirist based in Berlin. His plays are published by Bloomsbury Publishing (UK) and Broadway Play Publishing (USA). His debut novel, ZONE 23, is published by Snoggsworthy, Swaine & Cormorant. He can reached at or

(Republished by permission of author or representative)
• Category: Foreign Policy, Ideology • Tags: American Media, Donald Trump, Russia 
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  1. “Is Donald Trump a Traitor?”

    Donald Trump is in no position to give aid or comfort to anyone. Trump, like all US presidents, is an interchangeable figurehead of the CIA regime that rules the US with formal impunity in municipal law. John Kennedy was the last president that didn’t know he was a puppet ruler. After CIA killed him, subsequent presidents were purged (Nixon, Carter,) terrorized by assassins (Ford,) or shot (Reagan) by CIA in illegal domestic operations. CIA then installed four presidents (Bush, Clinton, Bush, and Obama) directly from the ranks of CIA nomenklatura under strict control (remember Obama’s instant U-turn on torture after public CIA threats of revolt?)

    Even before CIA formally seized head of state powers with their JFK coup, the agency negated independent presidential action, arrogating autonomy for clandestine crime in defiance of Truman and Congress, and thwarting the Eisenhower/Herter disarmament initiative.

    Why should Russia care which CIA puppet they shake hands with? They know who’s in charge. Putin said as much in public. The US government is CIA.

    Tune in next week for another episode of Simple Answers to Stupid Questions.

    • Replies: @AnonFromTN
    , @gustafus
    , @Realist
  2. This guy really doesn’t like Christianity, and we he wants us all to know he casually lumps it in, Joe Cool style, with cults involving thetans and other bizarre ideas.

    *tips fedora*

    • Agree: RadicalCenter
    • Replies: @LSJohn
    , @Joe Wong
  3. AnonFromTN [AKA "Anon"] says:
    @Waggle My Authority

    Anon from TN
    Disagree with one point you are making. I don’t believe that CIA killed JFK: the job was done too well. Everything ham-handed government does comes apart at the seams. So, it stands to reason that JFK was killed (on orders of the same people who wholly own the CIA and the US government) by better professionals than the government ever had.

  4. gustafus says:
    @Waggle My Authority

    There is a small sea change – the internet and social media have dispersed and castrated the information food chain… to the chagrin of our enemies at the CIA….

    Trump may be in a position to save us from their tyranny…. he has finally settled into the cockpit and is playing with the knobs and levers of government. A Kennedy type action couldn’t happen today.

    Hell, they barely got away with 9/11 and OKC.

    Las Vegas was a HUGE CLUSTER FUCK – probably an arms deal gone bad – with the Mexican security guard fleeing the country. 50-some victims WANT ANSWERS – along with the Las Vegas police Dept.

    Don’t think the CIA is infallible – they appear to be less than Hollywood style supermen.

    One look at Brennan gave me hope. He’s a buffoon who had power. But he’s just not that special.

    I think the shooting in Florida was another fuck up…. too many kids are reporting multiple shooters, and the simultaneous “security drill” – smells like yesterday’s fish course.

    There IS A SEA CHANGE – and a bunch of desperation by the likes of Mueller and Sessions.
    Horse trading as I type … trying to pin something on Mr. Smith and his loyal followers – because the brains in this country don’t gravitate to the CIA or FBI … who are now just low rent hucksters with guns.

  5. Brabantian says: • Website

    Regarding Glenn Greenwald and The Intercept: As every major government knows, Greenwald is just like his ticket-to-riches ‘Edward Snowden’, in fact a known CIA fraud and hoax run by the US intel agencies, as Vladimir Putin himself hints, tho he plays along in one of the many US-Russia exchanges of favours … You will see this clearly if you look at the intel agency report on the Snowden fraud at Moscow’s SVR and FSB

    For example, laughably, the official story is that Edward Snowden first ‘leaked’ to Bush VP Dick Cheney’s friend & biographer at the Washington Post, anti-9-11-truth Bart Gellman … of course no real ‘dissident’ would ‘leak’ to Dick Cheney’s friend at a flagship CIA newspaper … And then Snowden was pumped by CIA rags NY Times & UK Guardian, global kings of Fake News & CIA propaganda

    Glenn Greenwald, is the employee in turn of 3 billionaire families, Bill Gates, the Rothschilds & now the slimy Pierre Omidyar … Imagine what Ron Unz could do with $50 million for ‘great brave journalism’, like Omidyar gave to Greenwald, who produces very little except shallow meanderings, despite all that dosh

    Glenn Greenwald & Jimmy Wales of the CIA’s Wikipedia, both were p-rnography sellers before their current gigs, gay p-rn in Greenwald’s case … a business where the CIA recruits its shills

    There was little truly new in Snowden ‘revelations’, most of it known in essence years earlier, a 2008 book even – the USA is spying on everyone, all the big internet tools have ‘back doors’ for the CIA-NSA, etc … Snowden is partly fostering international black-mail, partly de-legitimising real dissidents who don’t have corp-and-CIA media promotion, partly a ‘rat trap’ to destroy real dissidents who contact Greenwald

    Yes, Greenwald, Snowden & Assange are in place to help identify & kill real dissidents duped into contacting Glenn Greenwald and the other media pumpers of these fakers … People who trusted Greenwald or Assange are dead or in prison (Known dead: Seth Rich, Peter W Smith; jailed: Reality Leigh Winner)

    Snowden & ‘constitutional lawyer’ Greenwald & ‘not really living at Ecuador Embassy’ Julian Assange (who was admitted to be a CIA fraud by both Zbigniew Brzezinski & Israel’s Netanyahu) – these guys not only all oppose 9/11 truth, but also, laughably refuse to discuss the USA Virginia federal judge court corruption about which they have specific files … the wide exposure of which would instantly make the extraditions of Snowden & Assange impossible

    Julian Assange has had Rothschild lawyers & Snowden & family CIA-tied lawyers, Plato Cacheris, Bruce Fein, who never represent real dissidents etc

    The fake ‘dissident hero’ is one of the CIA’s best operations, with few questioning a ‘hero’ offered up to them by the CIA’s own media … we are all so ‘eager’ to heroes we can fall for one supplied by the governments themselves

  6. @AnonFromTN

    CIA can afford to be incompetent. When you have impunity, it doesn’t matter whether you get caught. Look at Salandria’s testimony that CIA did a lot of heavy-handed signaling: Sure we did it. What are you gonna do about it?

    gustafus points up what Russ Baker called ‘ruthlessness and ineptitude,’ That’s because even when the story falls apart, the OPSEC fails, the DCI still has his get-out-jail-free card.

    • Replies: @Joe Wong
  7. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    We’re all ready to read something else instead of how ridiculous this whole Russian thing is but the media, especially the alternative media, isn’t going to allow that to happen.

    They are dedicated to writing ridiculous op-eds that point out how ridiculous their other friends in the media are. All together now zombies: ‘Is Trump a traitor or not?’

  8. Anon • Disclaimer says:

    Trump isn’t a traitor. He’s a grifter.
    It’s clear he and Kushner were running a grift during the transition.
    Russian adoptions: that’s pretty funny you have to admit!

    Kompromat you ask?

    When asked whether Russia has such material, Mr Isaev, who is also director of the Russian Institute of Contemporary Economics, replied: “Of course we have it!”

  9. RobinG says:

    Jeremy Scahill is not a “serious, grown-up authoritative journalist.” He’s an overrated putz and establishment shill. This has been crystal clear to everyone since he threatened to boycott the November 30, 2013, International Anti-War Conference in London if Mother Agnes Mariam participated.

    It’s easy enough to virtue-signal to SJW liberals by moaning about the misery of Palestine, but when it comes to exposing the Israeli/PNAC collusion to dismember Syria, where the F*** is he?

    • Replies: @Seamus Padraig
  10. Great essay. The Russiagate hoax is indeed a mean-spirited political fantasy. Unfortunately, this fraud is being nourished by powerful Trump-haters in government, elite newsrooms and broadcasting booths, think tanks, as well as on numerous Ivy League college campuses.

    Incredibly, the hysteria, loathing and mockery directed against Trump began the moment he announced his candidacy. And it’s never let up.

    On the day of Trump’s inauguration, ‘anti-fascist protesters’ were making threats and showing contempt for America’s elected president. Based on TV coverage, it seemed to be a global phenomena. It was chilling.

    To what extent was Soros, et al, funding these events and pulling strings?

    After all, Trump campaigned on less war, normalizing relations with Russia, and restoring America’s Main Street economy. What’s so outrageous about that? Many of these objectives should have been embraced by the Left. But they weren’t. The usual activists were too busy hating Trump and his legion of ‘deplorables’.

    By comparison, the Right didn’t explode in rage like this when Obama was elected and inaugurated.

    For what it’s worth, there’s nothing criminal or ever wrong about spinning, prevaricating and stretching the truth to manipulate public opinion. Sure, it’s sleazy and destructive; but it’s done each and every day in America. Just pick up a newspaper or turn on the TV. There it is. It’s how our fractured culture operates.

    Oddly, the seething, hate-filled, anti-Trump derangement syndrome that is now in high gear is only tenuously connected to Trump’s actual policies. It is Trump the man (and what/who he represents) that countless ‘progressives’ despise. Only Trump’s removal from office (or death) will satisfy them.

    As for the Russia-Trump plot to fool the public and ‘steal’ the US election, that conspiracy theory is similarly unhinged.

    There are, after all, so many sources, stories, suppositions, rumors, headlines, Facebook yarns and political ads/endorsements in circulation at any given moment that the idea that one Russia-based internet campaign could ‘brainwash’ a nation of already-programmed robots into choosing the ‘wrong’ candidate is ridiculous.

    Like it or not, half-truths, propaganda, and nonsensical fairytales are part of America’s fabric. Like guided missiles, sophisticated BS comes raining down upon us continuously. Our brains are covered with it.

    The only way to resist these odious waves of disinformation is to question everything and engage in genuine critical thinking. This includes rejecting the implausible ‘Russiagate’ conspiracy theory.

  11. Wally says:

    As simple as this:

    “We can force through any lie. It just has to be big enough so that a normal person says, ‘Well that cannot be a lie!’. Then the lie cannot be recognized as such. And the lie has to be repeated continuously. Then it is believed and is powerful because it is the belief in a ‘truth.’”

    – from ‘Propaganda’, by Zionist Jew Edward Bernays

    • Replies: @jacques sheete
  12. Trump a traitor.
    A traitor to what ?

  13. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    The internet ads thing is a relatively recent morphing of the story.

    Initially it was that the conspiracy was to spear-phish e-mail accounts and release them unmodified in the hope that the brutal truth would shock America into voting against Hillary, what with her anti-Bernie and pro-UFO stuff.

    But yeah, it’s hard to keep track of. Reminds me of the Roswell alien thing that just kept getting more and more ridiculous throughout the 1990s before it imploded.

  14. This is aa very good point:
    “Anyone invested in any type of social group that functions along authoritarian lines is susceptible to this type of pressure, regardless of how savvy or intelligent they are.”

  15. Realist says:
    @Waggle My Authority

    The CIA is just a part of the Deep State.

    • Replies: @Waggle My Authority
  16. Jake says:

    “… three celebrity journalists employed by a billionaire to provide the masses …”

    That tells almost all we need to know. Our ‘mainstream’ journalists, like our academics, see themselves as honest, objective, impartial, tellers of truth. Actually, they are whores to the super rich.

    • Replies: @jilles dykstra
  17. @Jake

    Rockefeller bought a news agency to change his image from profiteer to philantropist.
    It worked.

    John F. Flynn, ‘Gold von Gott, Die Rockefeller-Saga’, Berlin 1937 (‘God’s Gold : The Story of Rockefeller and His Times’, Harcourt, Brace, New York, 1932)

  18. The Cult of Authority

    Love the title.

    Depressed by the fact.

  19. @Brabantian

    Great comment on a great essay, spot on Brabantian.

  20. The Scalpel says: • Website

    CJ Hopkins, I want to be like you – like you write, anyway. I can’t say I know what kind of person you are outside writing, but my guess is that the world needs more like you. Keep it up!


    TheScalpel 😉

    • Replies: @LSJohn
  21. @Wally

    Wally, can you provide a more specific reference for that quote? I’d like the page and the edition since I’m unable to find it in my copy after some time searching.


  22. @AnonFromTN

    I dunno … I think the whole air of ineptitude around The Company is just a cover. Why else would GHW Bush have been in Dallas at the time and then rocket just a few years later to its top job? Yeah, I know, it could have been KBR pulling all the strings, but I would still assert The Company was used as the vehicle to pre-position all the other necessary elements, like Papa Cruz, a former anti-Batista foot soldier, showing up a few years to UT just in time to radicalise LHO and set him up as the fall guy. And at the centre of all this, though I’m not sure how except that he ran against Jeb! and Ted, is Donald J Trump.

  23. Zionist Israel and the Zionist dual citizens rule the U.S. lock stock and gun barrel, and the proof is that Israel and the Zionists who control the deep state did 911 and got away with it, and tried to sink the USS LIBERTY and got away with that too, that is control in spades.

  24. What could better symbolise the US internet than a person who has won awards for writing fiction trying to sell us the “unvarnished truth”? The gripe with the Intercept comes, I think, from the fact that it recently “outed” Julian Assange as a supporter of Vladimir Putin and as having sought to do everything possible to prevent Hillary Clinton being elected president of the US. That was done, appropriately enough, using a whistleblower from inside WikiLeaks. The “outing” was all the more damning as the Intercept and Assange tend to be preceived as being on the same side. It also throws new light on the “DNC dirt” published by Assange, reinforces Russiagate and discredits WikiLeaks. That that would annoy Putin’s American supporters is unsurprising. A propos of fiction, I can find no reference to Ukraine in the article linked to, unsurprising since the article dates from 2013!

    • Replies: @Dieter Kief
  25. Gradually, everyone gets the message: if you don’t want to be excommunicated, you had better believe, or pretend to believe, the official narrative of the cult. It isn’t a question of deception, belief, gullibility, or even intelligence. It is a question of power, social pressure, and fear of ostracization and exile. Anyone invested in any type of social group that functions along authoritarian lines is susceptible to this type of pressure, regardless of how savvy or intelligent they are.

    That’s a tad too simple, I’d guess. Those well-known journalists would be free, really, to think, write and talk otherwise. What would happen to them would not be as bad s your above cited argument claims to be true (=happening, in case of dissident thinking).

    What I would find appropriate would be to say: They rather want to be with the crowd. In mass-societies, it’s attractive to be with the crowd – and it’s a way of being, too, which can numb the mind, no matter how critical the positions are, somebody articulates.

    So – the antidote to the mass-oriented way of thinking is the critical and enlightend one: Based on rather on the soundness of it’s arguments than on ideas of mass-information. It’s imperative would be: Soundness of the arguments always first!

    That would mean for the Intercept: There’s a real danger there, to lose one’s mind while achieving mass-compatibility. If you’d reformulate your argument in this slightly altred way, I’d fully agree with you and your otherwise great article, Mr. Hopkins.

  26. @Brabantian

    “USA Virginia federal judge court corruption about which they have specific files ”
    helpabrutha out and link? This I am unfamiliar with.

    • Replies: @Seamus Padraig
  27. This is an easy choice. Barring any evidence that such collusion took place —-

    I have no intention of watching another ping pong match of speculative accusation, even if that speculation is engaged in tri-part ping pong of well known reporters.

  28. AnonFromTN [AKA "Anon"] says:
    @The Alarmist

    Anon from TN
    You might be right, the whole “ineptitude” story could be a feint within a feint, i.e., yet another official government lie. As a matter of fact, after Iraq WMD thing, if all intelligence services of the US agree that two times two makes four, I’d start doubting that. Russiagate is today’s Iraq WMDs: same pushers, same lack of any proof, same hysterics in the MSM.

  29. @Realist

    Interesting point. In the 70’s CIA made the decision to further diffuse their agency, and that has proceeded to a degree never envisioned at the time. Now CIA includes illegal moles in every relevant US government branch and organization, eyes-only exchange of agents with foreign agencies, and all major mafias involved in transnational organized crime, for example,

    Is it just headless chaos? Who runs it all? Find the source of impunity. When anyone else gets away with a crime, the impunity is derived, conditional, procedural, dependent on winks and nods. Only the DCI can use the magic national security words and stop a prosecution cold by classifying the criminals, the evidence, and the charge.

    Nope, don’t fuzz it up, CIA’s in charge here.

  30. Joe Hide says:

    To C.J. Hopkins,
    Great article. Mind-bendingly humorous description of true events.
    You might consider that the “bosses” of these journalists are not at all the top of the control pyramid, and that they themselves are probably controlled through blackmail in the threat of exposure of their pedophilia, sexually deviate, degenerate histories.
    Keep writing!

    • Replies: @Anonymous
  31. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:
    @Joe Hide

    You got a problem with pedophilia? That’s a made up political disorder. Everybody loves the children. Think of the children. The people who are obsessed with pedophilia think long and hard about the special little angels and how they can criminalize sex for more of the sheep.

    Real crimes are too complicated for the slaves who fantasize all day long about the evil pedophiles. These are the same people who in the past would have given a lobotomy to Glenn Greenwald because he enjoys taking it and giving it in the ass of another man. Sorry, you might be obsessed about that too. Perhaps the US will have a death sentence for underage buggery like creative genius Pol Pot had back in the day.

  32. I watched the Intercept debate last week. Risen, Greenwald, and Scahill have all done solid work in the past. They are not, as the author of this piece declares, “celebrity journalists”.

    It is true that The Intercept is owned by a dubious character. And lately it has really gone down the toilet by employing writers who seem touched by the Trump hysteria. The Intercept has also provided a space for the ridiculous Shaun King, the Blackest White man around.

  33. LSJohn says:

    I’m curious about which of his comments you considered disrespectful to Christianity. I wouldn’t consider one’s opinion about Jesus’ image on a taco, or transubstantiation to have anything to do with his/her opinion of Christianity. Mentioning them with Thetans doesn’t look like a shot a Christianity to me. Is mentioning The House of David the problem?

    • Replies: @Anon
  34. LSJohn says:

    Well, I see three possibilities: 1) You are way ahead of the curve, and correct; 2) You are so aware of the reality of so many conspiracies in which government agents have been involved that now EVERYTHING looks like a conspiracy to you, or 3) You are promoting a very clever intelligence community operation to discredit the few willing and able to publicize important truths so that we will doubt them and potential whistleblowers will be afraid to contact them.

  35. LSJohn says:
    @The Scalpel

    I agree. This guy is good.

    • Replies: @Randal
  36. CanSpeccy says: • Website

    The thing to understand about the government of America and the countries subject to its sway is that the democratic system by which they are governed, is a totalitarian system that achieves public compliance, and indeed support, through manipulation of the public mind.

    George Kennan, a main architect of post-war US foreign policy, played a role in the creation of this system by arguing for “the creation of a covert political warfare operations directorate within the government” — that is, an American equivalent in functional terms of the Soviet system of political indoctrination and enforcement of political correctness.

    This seed” as the NY Times described it “quickly grew into the covert arm of the Central Intelligence Agency.”

    Many years later, testifying before a Senate committee, Kennan called the political-warfare initiative “the greatest mistake I ever made.”

    So inevitably, today, all public policy debate in the media is bullshit, and any who threaten to overturn the manufactured consensus is likely to be suicided with a bullet in the back of the head, killed in an “accident” in a runaway car, bombed airliner, etc. or shot in the back by thieves with no interest in emptying the victims pockets.

    So, the big question is, is there any way from here to a society of well informed and educated, citizens, able to speak freely without fear of state-back reprisals by state-backed correct speech tribunals, liberal-left hate speech, and employer-imposed PC discipline, and the efficient operations of the covert political operations arm of the CIA, and other intelligence agencies?

  37. Anon • Disclaimer says:

    At most, mocking Trans and Tacos would make you a Protestant. So, is he simply anti-Catholic? Fine with me.

    • Replies: @SolontoCroesus
  38. @Michael Kenny

    The “intercept” looked good at the beginnig – but as soon as Matt Taibbi chose to withdraw from his contract there I was in doubt; and what happened was: No attacks on Wall Street whatsoever on the “intercept”. Russian Spy-hunting instead. Huh!?

    Hopkins’ most important point is, that the disussion is so obviously boring and lifeless and looking fake & staged alltogehter – – by The Ambassadors of the Temple of the Dead Souls and Infimary Inc. (or some such).

    Hopkins’ article reminded me of someone – was it P. J. O’Rourke, or was it Steve Sailer?

    • Replies: @Anonymous
  39. @RobinG

    ‘Establishment hill’ is right. Our own Jonathan Revusky here at once analyzed a talk Scahill gave in which he affirmed his belief in the official 9/11 narrative. Worth a look, if you haven’t read it yet:

    • Replies: @Jonathan Revusky
  40. @mark green

    By comparison, the Right didn’t explode in rage like this when Obama was elected and inaugurated.

    Well, there was the Tea Party stuff, plus all the ‘Birther’ theories, both of which I though were pretty silly. But then, they were definitely small-fry when compared with the Never-Trump lunacy. I have never seen anything so insane in my entire life! And it’s not that I’m uncritical of Trump … but c’mon. Russiagate? Thirteen geeks running a clickbait operation out of St. Petersburg flipped the election to Trump? What a joke!

  41. @travell lyte

    Ten-to-one the link would take you to Brabantian’s all-time favorite source: Veteran’s Today. He’s a huge fan of VT’s editor, Gordon Duff, who specializes in these overly elaborate reverse-psychology conspiracy theories, such as the one where Assange and Snowden are really secretly working for–not against–the deep state.

  42. Gordon Duff, who specializes in these overly elaborate reverse-psychology conspiracy theories, such as the one where Assange and Snowden are really secretly working for–not against–the deep state.

    I’m not sure he’s wrong frankly. (Though I’m not sure he’s right either.)

    At times, it seems to me that all these sorts of characters and narratives we are being presented could well be very elaborate fictions, meticulously constructed with a lot of layers, kind of like something in a Le Carré novel.

    Now, for example, they seem to have certain no-go zones, like Assange claims that “9/11 Truthers bother him” or something like that. This kind of thing raises suspicions…

    But again, I am hardly sure. I just don’t know. Also, I would say that, in this scenario, Assange and Snowden would be working for one faction of the Deep State, which, I tend to think, is not really monolithic.

  43. Is the curtain opening on final act?
    Not yet?
    I think that we will find out when Trump is impeached.

  44. @Anon

    How is this story concept any more credible than the one where a radical Jewish prophet who’s been dead for over two thousand years, but who rules the universe with his omnipotent father, appeared on a taco in Beeville, Texas?

    Half-way thru Ian Caldwell’s “The Fifth Gospel.” Set in the Vatican, an Orthodox priest, abandoned by his Roman Catholic wife, raising a son, teaching him to understand the Gospels carefully and to pray to Mary, Theotokos (take that #MeToo).
    The father and child are surrounded with friends, including Swiss Guard, and family who love and care for him.
    The plot involves the authenticity of the Shroud of Turin (on linen, not cornmeal), Vatican in-fighting, and the seething enmity between Roman and Greek Orthodox Catholics.

    It’s all kinda comforting to a disaffected Catholic cynic in a way that
    “Trump conspired with Putin to brainwash Americans with Internet ads into electing him US Pres so he could help the Russians take over the world!”
    is not.
    Except maybe for the Shroud thing. And the taco.

  45. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:
    @Dieter Kief

    Taibbi is another guardian of the neoliberal order although you’d assume the opposite the way he pokes witticism at the status quo. He originated the Vampire Squid of Goldman Sachs to narrate and entertain Americans during the controlled demolition of the financial crisis.

    CIA waterboy out did himself with a weird piece in the Rolling Stone on how “US cool kids” hopped a plane and started fighting with the feminist freedom fighter YPG to defeat the ISIS horror in Syria: ‘It was anarchy man. And dude it was a real left wing type group effort’. Dude, man, yeah! Yawn.

  46. The reason you never hear a mockingbird journalist or politician making a complete statement of whatever offense Trump was guilty of is because it is so asinine on the face of it. So all we hear is “Trump, Russia, collusion” repeated incoherently.

    It was the same with the incoherent “Saddam, WMD’s, 9/11, Al Qaeda” conditioning.

    The legacy media is obviously an organ of state propaganda, and far too many of the sheeple gladly accept their conditioning to show what good little cult members they are.

    It seems worse than I have ever seen before, with the top law enforcement agencies committing brazen felonies, indeed sedition, and the finger is pointed at the person the people elected to bring them to account.

  47. Is Donald Trump a traitor is not a “serious” question. But asking it implies that Donald Trump might be a traitor. I conclude that these three and their benefactors are enemies of Donald Trump. Are Glenn Greenwald, James Risen, and Jeremy Scahill traitors?

  48. renfro says:

    @ C.J. Hopkins

    Excellent article! ! ….like a sparkling glass of ice war in a parched desert…… More of your writing here please.

  49. Cato says:

    Russiagate started with the assertion that the Russians had hacked the voting machines. It moved on to the more modest assertion that Russians had fed hacked DNC emails to Wikileaks. Today, it has moved on to the extremely benign assertion that Russians bought some online ads that may have motivated some Americans to vote for Trump. As if it matters who buys the ads! But the assumption is that we are sheep, who will follow whatever anyone tells us.

  50. Anon • Disclaimer says:

    Samuel Frances put it matchlessly well in his Leviathan

    Despite genuine efforts by the members of an elite to adhere consistently to their ideology, their overriding need with respect to it is the ability of the ideology to reflect and rationalize their interests. When the elite finds itself in circumstances in which the ideology does not serve its needs and interests, it may alter the ideology or it may simply ignore it. The elite will therefore occasionally violate its professed ideology, and it will seldom display much attraction for a highly formalized set of ideas that cannot be applied to changing circumstances and interests
    The ideologies that serve the interests of elites therefore often tend to be rather vague and to cover their evasion of philosophical and scientific problems with rhetoric or specious logic, although such ideologies may draw on systems of ideas that are far more rigorous and serious in their effort to correspond to reality. It is therefore often impossible to describe the ideology of an elite in a logically rigorous way.
    The managerial elite in the mass organizations of state, economy, and culture of 20th-century society, like any other elite, possesses an ideology, which it uses to rationalize, identify, and communicate its interests and to integrate mass society under its power. In the managerial regimes of the Western world, in which mass consumption and mass political participation have developed, the dominant ideology of the managerial elite may in general be called “managerial humanism,” though it is known under various labels in the different developed states of the West. Managerial humanism is not usually a systematically articulated or formally explicit set of ideas, and it often exists in the minds of the managerial elites and their mass following as an unrecognized or unarticulated assumption or set of assumptions that is regarded as axiomatic by its adherents. self-evident, […]
    Explicit challenges to or dissension from the ideas of managerial humanism will therefore often encounter moral or emotional outrage, the expression of doubts about the intelligence, good will, or sanity of those who challenge them, or simple perplexity.

    (the bolding is mine.)

    Why disturb, or wish to disturb, nature’s order?

    Never combat any man’s opinion; for though you reached the age of Methuselah, you would never have done setting him right upon all the absurd things that he believes. It is also well to avoid correcting people’s mistakes in conversation, however good your intentions may be; for it is easy to offend people, and difficult, if not impossible to mend them. If you feel irritated by the absurd remarks of two people whose conversation you happen to overhear, you should imagine that you are listening to the dialogue of two fools in a comedy. Probatum est. The man who comes into the world with the notion that he is really going to instruct it in matters of the highest importance, may thank his stars if he escapes with a whole skin.


    “Look around you,” said the citizen. “This is the largest market in the world.” “Oh surely not,” said the traveller. “Well, perhaps not the largest,” said the citizen, “but much the best.” “You are certainly wrong there,” said the traveller. “I can tell you….” They buried the stranger in the dusk.


  51. @Seamus Padraig

    Hi, Seamus. Thanks for the plug! 🙂

    To be 100% clear on something though, in that article, I was not really singling out Scahill as a shill. Well, it might seem like I was, but it really wasn’t my intention.

    Basically, anybody in that position, who wants to be on the TV and so on is going to behave roughly the same way, making their declaration of faith in the official 9/11 story or whatever other canonical narrative. So, even though the video I used as an example happened to feature Scahill, it wasn’t really so much about that guy specifically.

    Of course, I’ve come to realize that probably most (all?) of the celebrity journalists you see on mainstream TV are (perhaps, to varying degrees) intelligence agency assets. That was the point of the late Udo Ulfkotte’s revelations in his book Gekaufte Journalisten (Bought Journalists).

    A key concept in terms of navigating all of this is the “limited hangout”. A lot of the big journalistic scoops or revelations from these people are of that nature. The information is valid, but it is partial, i.e. key information is held back, and also the valid info is likely sprinkled with key bits of disinfo.

    But, again, I don’t actually see any reason to single out Scahill, since basically all of these people are part of that shady world, where nothing is quite as it seems… if you get my drift…

    • Replies: @Seamus Padraig
  52. Joe Wong says:
    @Waggle My Authority

    Who is the master of CIA, the Rothschild or the British?

  53. Joe Wong says:

    The Christians have been committing crimes against humanity, crimes against peace and war crimes using evil and sadist inquisition methods for a very very long time. Their forte is racial and culture genocide. Before Columbus time they only did their carnage between themselves and Muslims within the European continent and ME. After Columbus they spread their gospel all over the world.

    The most unfortunate victims are the Americans (from North to South). Christian not only took the American’s land, and killed them into nearly extinct, they also burnt all books of South Americans, so that there is no indigenous South American civilization left to tell their history and to refute what the Christian casted them as savages.

    After WWII, Christian churches and NGOs play vanguard for the Western imperialists’ invasions around the world, they formed a false opinion about the victims first which gave the moral ground for the Western imperialists to bomb, kill and waterboard as humanitarian intervention.

    Many Christians who tell horror stories about their target regimes’ ‘brutality’ against their disciples, all anecdotes of course, told to them by the pastors in church sessions and NGOs’ townhall meetings, same way the west manufactured that FLG horror show.

    This shows that churches, official or underground, and their NGOs, are hotbeds for destabilisation, the pastors dispense B.S. to the disciples, the sheeples swallow it hook, line and sinker, they go out and feed the same B.S. to their families, friends. In no time, half the church and NGO goers believe their enemy is their governments, not the Empire of Chaos and its morally defunct warmonger allies.

    Its enough to make anybody sit up in cold sweat in the middle of night !

    • Replies: @bjondo
  54. Joe Wong says:

    Before Edward Snowden, people believe CIA is a necessary tool to defend the Western democracy, but after Edward Snowden, that believe is gone, people no long believe the West is democracy but a repackaged morally defunct old days of colonialism and zero-sum warmongers, as well as the CIA is indeed an evil and insidious monster that needs to be slayed. Now the world is looking new direction for the future, the West is the past and hypocrisy of the worst mankind.

    Are you saying the CIA is so hubris and inept that it will undermine itself and kill the host it lives on? Or like LSJohn said You are promoting a very clever intelligence community operation to discredit the few willing and able to publicize important truths so that we will doubt them and potential whistleblowers will be afraid to contact them?

    Anyhow all are very intriguing.

  55. bjondo says:
    @Joe Wong

    You mean Europeans and the Amurderkan cousins.
    Don’t think “Wong” Christians did such.

  56. @Brabantian

    It was Snowden who spilled the beans on the fact that all raw intelligence collected by the NSA goes straight to Israel. And if remember correctly the date he released that little gem was the anniversary of 911. I also remember that story was quickly swept under the rug without being refuted.
    How do you explain that?
    I’m sure those Israelis didn’t like it being exposed like that. And I’m sure they would love to see Snowden discredited. Just like you’re trying to do now.

  57. RobinG says:

    Ray McGovern calls out selfish shill James Risen, at 15:15 min.

    CIA Veteran – – Deep State Is Very Real

  58. @The Alarmist

    Rather than natural ineptitude, I believe that CIA and other intelligence bodies, use ineptitude in a more subtle manner. Let me explain:

    In JFK or 9-11 it is patently obvious that Lee Oswald or nineteen coke head, alcoholic jihadis who couldn’t fly are not responsible. Let me repeat: It is patently obvious. It’s equally obvious to each and everyone. But within minutes of the event, propaganda goes into hyper-sonic mode to tell you that Lee or jihadis did it. The result is cognitive dissonance, the mother of clinical depression. Americans cannot accept the truth of truth.

    There is a Richard Pryor joke in which he relates that he was in bed with another woman when his wife returns home early. She finds Prior and the other woman in bed. The other woman flees the house and Prior’s wife berates him while he denies he was in bed with the other woman.

    He then asks his wife, “Who you gonna believe, me or your lying eyes.”

    CIA wants you to see the truth in your subconscious. It also feeds you constant and endless propaganda to dissuade you from believing that truth. This is probably well-covered in Propaganda 101.

  59. SteveK9 says:

    Concise and right on the money. Personally, I am a Democrat, have voted that way for 45 years. And, that is one reason I could not vote for Hillary Clinton. Early in the campaign I characterized the election as evil (Clinton) vs. stupid (Trump). Trump is about as stupid as I expected, but I really underestimated Hillary.

    The Russiagate scenario was preposterous, despicable, and dangerous (unless you like the thought of becoming radioactive ash) from the beginning and it has only grown more so over time. It is also a serious threat to any remaining democracy we might have. After this, we might just as well let the heads of the CIA, Lockheed Martin, and the Joint Chiefs choose a President for us.

  60. @Jonathan Revusky

    You’re quite welcome. It was a great article, so it deserves a plug now and again.

    I didn’t get the impression that you were “singling out” Scahill, but you did use him as an example of a gatekeeper–which he definitely is.

  61. Randal says:

    Bloody hell! Not the LSJohn from way back when? (If so please don’t post my name, which you can probably guess.)

    Still running with libertarians? You were one of the best, if not the best.

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