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With statements like "I beat China all the time!" and "I could shoot someone and not lose voters!" potential future US Prsident Donald Trump epitomises all that is great about America, if by the word 'great' you mean 'mindnumbingly idiotic'. The good news, however, is that most of the other potential POTUS' are an equally horrible lot, so at least there's some consistency. If it is true that the people of a country get the leaders they deserve, then what does the line-up for the next "commander in chief" say about American society?

But Americans shouldn't feel too bad, Europe (and much of the rest of the world) is in equally dire straits, both at the political and social level. Someone appears to have decided that it's a good idea to try and tear the fabric of European society apart by flooding the union with desperate and angry refugees, along with a smattering of jihadi terrorists, thereby inflaming racial, religious and ethnic tensions.

Meanwhile, there are growing signs that that strangely self-aware animal known as the 'global economy' is in very poor health, and may even be planning to throw itself off a fiscal cliff in the near future, dragging us all down with it.

A perfect storm of mindless inanity and fecklessness at the global leadership level, hysterial and xenophobia at the social level, and unfettered greed at the economic level, seems set to blow up in all of our faces. Time to sit back and watch the show?

Join your regular hosts Niall Bradley and Joe Quinn, and our special guests Elan Martin and Bahar Azizi, for a discussion of the madness that passes for normal life on planet earth at the end of Empire. This Sunday 7th February: 12-2pm EST 6-8pm CET.

Running Time: 02:06:00

Download: MP3

Here's the transcript of the show:

Joe: Hi and welcome to Behind the Headlines on the SOTT Radio Network. My name's Joe Quinn. With me this week as usual is Niall Bradley.

Niall: Hi everyone.

Joe: Niall is going to be revealing something very special...

Niall: He is?

Joe: On this week's show so you'll just have to wait to find out what it is. Let me start with Bahar. Bahar Azizi is a Dutch SOTT editor and journalist-type person and she's with us also. Bahar?

Bahar: Hi everyone.

Joe: Hiya. It's great to have you here.

Niall: Welcome.

Bahar: Thank you for having me.

Joe: Yeah, excellent. We had Elan and Shane who are two of our English SOTT editors as well. They're in the US. They were on the line just until I wanted to talk to them and then they dropped. So they're going to appear back soon. Anyway I hope they will. Wait, maybe that's them now.

Niall: That's Shane and Elan, co-hosts of The Truth Perspective.

Joe: Exactly. Those are two of the guys, among fellow people who do The Truth Perspective on Saturdays. I'm pretty sure I can get them on the line. Elan and Shane are you there?

Shane: Yes.

Elan: We're back.

Joe: Wow.

Niall: Wow. They're calling us from the deep.

Joe: Yeah, they're reporting from 20,000 leagues under the sea.

Niall: You've got an echo there guys. Can you hear us? Hello? Anyone there?

Elan: Can you hear us?

Niall: No. Not very well. I think if you're asking if we can hear you the answer is no. There's an echo and you're cutting in and out so why don't you...

Joe: Hang up and try again or speak again and see if we've got it better there.

Shane: Glad to be here.

Joe: Keep talking Shane.

Shane: (breaking up)

Joe: No, I think you guys need to hang up and call in again. Once more.

Niall: With gusto.

Shane: Alright.

Niall: Where are they reporting from anyway? Antarctica? No, Shane and Elan are joining us from the US but they must have a poor internet connection. So we'll try and get them back and in the meantime Joe you forgot to announce the date. Our listeners need to know the date. It's Sunday, February 7th, 2016.

Joe: Yes, in the year of our lord the superman, 2016, also known more or less as into our third year now on the crappiest internet radio posting service on the internet which is Blog Talk Radio.

Niall: But not for much longer.

Joe: Not for much longer, yes. We are moving to our own site which will have much better audio quality than we're having to deal with right now because of course we don't like to have this boring monologue at the beginning of every show where we're actually trying to do really difficult things like talk to someone through an internet radio interface, just of a simple voice over the internet type of thing that you'd think would be a fundamental part of an internet radio service and we have to go through this process because we've tried it ourselves and doing it ourselves you don't have a problem. But when you pay someone else a lot of money to do it you get the shittiest service imaginable. That's the way the world works today people!

Anyway, that brings us to our topic for this week's show, how shitty the world is. And what we're not going to do about it because it can all go to hell as far as we're concerned. Well it is actually going to hell. We just wanted this week to talk a little bit about some of the major aspects of the same things that have been popping up over and over again. They just won't go away and I'm sure everybody's pretty bored, annoyed and irritated with the fact that these things just keep being shoved in your face every time you look at news headlines or look at the web. You want to just go look at the internet, find out something maybe, but you happen to accidentally stumble on a news website and you get this litany of complete and utter nonsense, chaos, ridiculous political, social, everything, pop culture, everything is just completely ridiculous right up to the level of and including all the things that are meant to be serious, like politics.

For example the next US general election. That's a pretty serious topic but when you browse the headlines and that sort of thing you see all sorts of ridiculous headlines and videos of these so-called politicians acting like complete and utter imbeciles. That's top level. These are the people who "run the country" or "run the world" if you believe in American exceptionalism and you have people like, as we mentioned in our blurb on the show here, Donald Trump saying stuff like "I could shoot someone and not lose voters". What kind of thing is that from someone who's meant to be in a position of almost ultimate responsibility on this planet to turn around and say as part of his campaign?! "Vote for me because I can shoot someone and not lose voters. I could shoot my voters and not lose those voters except they would be dead. But if I got them to vote for me before and then I shot them, they would still like me. That's how cool I am."

And he's a frontrunner for the President. This is the kind of crap this guys coming out with. And he recently said "If it was me, if I'm President, I'd bring back a hell of a lot worse things than water boarding."

Niall: I heard that one.

Joe: What did he say? Donald Trump wings or something?

Niall: What does he mean by "I could shoot somebody"? What was he talking about? I don't understand.

Joe: He meant it as he and anybody who'd listen to him. You have to assume with Donald Trump and most of the rest of them is that what they say is what they mean, or that they actually know what they're saying. So we think he's got a point behind what he says and when he says certain things you'd think "well that must mean something because he's trying to say something" but maybe that's a fallacy. Maybe that's the wrong way to go about it. But in this case you would assume that he is so cool...

Niall: He's so popular at this point.

Joe: Yeah, he's so popular he could do whatever. He could shoot...

Niall: And it wouldn't put a dint in his popularity.

Joe: Yeah.

Niall: Okay.

Joe: That kind of bravado, that kind of stuff is schoolyard stuff. That's like 16-year-old jocks in a high school talking to each other. And this is supposedly who's meant to be the leader of the free world?! It's beyond a farce! How is anybody meant to take this seriously. It's a complete and utter joke. And you think it's some kind of joke, like there's some point where they're going to come along and say "Ah, we're just joking about the Trump thing. That wasn't really serious." But they're not. This guy could probably be President. If you look at the alternatives and you've got Killary Clinton. Anybody with half a brain who looks at that woman, listens to the kind of things she says and realizes that she's a stone cold killer psycho. That's your alternative. Do you want the psycho lady who would stab you as quick as look at you and then cackle about it? Or do you want the buffoon 16-year-old jock in a grown man's body with really bad hair saying "I could shoot people and I could still be President". Do you want him to be your President or you want the psycho killer lady to be President, who likes killing people and laughing about it? Or do you want the guy who makes jokes about killing people and he could still be President?

Or do you want the other kind of also-rans, who are Ted Cruz who is a very, very creepy person who can't help coming across as a very creepy person? He doesn't have to say very much. You just have to look at him, but when he says something that makes it actually a lot worse and you know he's a really, really creepy person. There's a video up with him trying to kiss his daughter good-bye and she's like it may as well have been Satan trying to kiss this girl because of the way she was trying to get away from him, which is totally understandable. If you look at the guy, he just oozes slime. He doesn't have anything other than "I'm this slimy creep and I want to be President".

Apparently that's what flies these days if you want to be President of America. You have to be a big, idiot, infantile dufus and a body with a silly hairdo and then you can have a good shot at being President. You can be a killer, psycho bitch who laughs at people being sodomized on TV and then you can have a good shot at being President. Or you can just be creepy like a Pee Wee Herman kind of guy. Then you have a good shot at being President. But other than that, forget about it! A normal person? Forget about that!

Niall: Any smarts need not apply. I don't know much about Ted Cruz but I saw this video you're talking about. Typically there's a stereotype about politicians. They'll go and set up a scene, a photo op where they kiss babies and it's usually someone else's baby. The guy can't get a kiss from his daughter and he's running for the President of the United States. But a day later he wins. He beats Trump.

Joe: Well exactly. What's going to happen here is that you're going to go to different states and stuff and you're going to find that either creepy Pee Wee Herman kind of sleazy guy Ted Cruz is going to win by a bit, just over a 16-year-old in an adult's body jock who likes to make stupid jokes and say "I'm the coolest person on the planet". Donald Trump, Ted Cruz might win a little bit over him depending on the state. It depends on which of those two obnoxious men - or in the case of Killary, psycho nice woman who would kill as quick as look at you - it just depends on which of those three personalities are more repulsive to people or which one is the least repulsive and that's the one that will win.

But we can't leave out of course the stunningly charismatic figure of little Jeb Bush who's also in the running. Here you've got a Bush going again. He's more or less like George W. Bush but with droopier shoulders and not so much of a drawl, but just as stupid. But he's actually a little more pathetic because George Bush was too stupid. W. Bush was too stupid to realize his own patheticness or how he was not commander-in-chief material at all. He really believed it. But unfortunately poor Jeb is more or less the same but he kind of seems to have an inkling that he is actually just this pathetic individual and that doesn't come off well. When you're already stupid, it doesn't really help your game if you realize that you're also a bit of a loser, which he seems to have an inkling of now and again.

For example he was giving some town hall speech or something.

Niall: Yeah, yeah.

Joe: And he gave this rousing "I'm going to make America better!"

Niall: No. You're giving him more than he could give. What he was trying to give...

Joe: He was trying to say "I'm tired of America having to look after everybody else but if I'm President, America will be the country where" - and what he wanted to say was "America should speak softly and carry a big stick" but he said "America should stand up for itself and not have to always carry a stick, or whatever" and then he saying this bumbling kind of statement and then he stands there and he's got these droopy shoulders and he's flapping his arms at his side talking to these people. And then he pauses at the climax of his pathetic speech and nobody says a word. There's not a noise. You know when you watch all these Presidential speeches, when the candidates speak and raise their pitch up to a certain point and end on a particular point, and then there's a slight pause, that's the cue for people to clap! But nobody clapped.

Niall: Yeah.

Joe: And he had to say to them "Please clap. Please clap." And so they all clapped.

Niall: At which point they did, enthusiastically and there were a couple of Whoots as well, "whooo-whooo-whooo-whooo".

Joe: Whooo-whooo-whooo you're such a loser nobody wants to clap spontaneously for you! You have to ask them to clap and "I just love my presidential candidate to have to ask people to clap after he said something".

Niall: The thing is, that's always the case. These town hall meetings/press briefings/rallies have certain lists of towns...

Joe: "Meet the idiot" rally, yeah.

Niall: Sometimes it's called town hall, blah, blah, blah. Anyway, at places where they give speeches when they're running for President the audiences are always, or in general - a little bit of a different thing going on with the democratic speeches - but anyway the republicans certain are always selected.

Joe: Yeah.

Niall: They're careful who's in there and who is then standing or sitting behind the candidate who's going to be in camera view. "We've got to make sure we've got enough black people, enough Hispanic, enough old people" and so on and so it's all carefully orchestrated. What's interesting about this is not that they didn't clap because they didn't have an interest in Jeb Bush but that he was so flat he couldn't prime them to do what they were supposed to do.

Joe: Right.

Niall: He had to actually ask at this moment "Please clap everybody". And then they gave as good as they were going to give. But it wasn't that the audience had decided they disliked Jeb Bush as candidate for President based on what he was offering to them. It was that he was unable to at least act what he was supposed to do for the rest of the play to take place.

Joe: He wasn't able to act Presidential or give a rousing speech or provoking people even at the sentiment of where they felt something of what he was saying. He was just wobbling around the stage with his droopy shoulders saying the same thing that they all say which is "I'm going to make America great again" and "America needs to be great because America is great but it's not great anymore and things should be great in America. America itself should be great and I as President would like to make America great again by doing great things for the American people and having the American people do great things for America and that way America will be great again." If you understand, that's quite a complex...

Niall: It's so easy. There are these stock phrases. All you have to do is say them...

Joe: Yeah.

Niall: ...half-convincingly and he couldn't.

Joe: He couldn't do it. "Please clap. Please clap". And if they didn't clap he would have then broke down crying because he was like "I spent a lot of money on this and I hope to get it back sometime. Clap for me because I want to be the President like my brother was."

Anyway, it's hard to comment on it because it's so pathetic. It's actually a travesty. It just strikes me as something that should not be happening because it's so farcical. It's gone way beyond the realms of just propaganda and bluff and bluster. It's actually gone into a farce with what these people are saying and the way they present themselves. So nobody should be taking it seriously, but the fact that the media are all still analyzing it and people are sitting down and going "Who am I going to vote for as President? Who do I like the best? The psycho killer bitch, the 16-year-old jock with an IQ of 80 in an adult body and very bad hair, or sleazy, creepy Ted Cruz who just oozes ooze basically and creeps everybody out just by standing there looking at them, or Jeb Bush who's, if it's even possible, is worse than George W. Bush. And you're meant to pick from those? Koko the Clown 1, Koko the Clown 2, Koko the Clown 3 and which one acts more ridiculous. Which one acts least ridiculous? I'll take him or her most seriously.

It's just boggles my mind that it's actually even happening. It's like we live in some kind of fantasy theme park or fun fair hall of mirrors reality or something where this can even possibly happen, where politicians don't even feel responsible enough or aren't responsible enough or have gotten to the point where they're so idiotic that this is what we're dealing with. We're dealing with idiots. It's Idiocracy. If anybody's seen the movie Idiocracy, it's Dwayne Elizondo Mountain Dew Herbert Camacho with an M16 shooting it off in Congress and shouting "We're going to make America great again" because electrolytes. And that's the plan. It's great.

It is actually as bad as that almost, really. So the guys are back I think. Are they? Elan and Shane?

Elan: Yes.

Shane: Yeah, we think we are.

Elan: Do we sound okay?

Joe: Okay.

Shane: That's good.

Joe: I don't know if you guys were listening there. We were just ragging on the politics, the potential politics. I don't know what you guys think. Maybe you guys have just decided not to look at it anymore. I was going to say it's too close to home but the problem is that America's very close to everybody in the world these days. It's right there in your face, like Coca-Cola.

Shane: That's kind of thing with the US political system. It's so bad and it's so..., but on the other hand, it has so much influence in the world and that's what makes it so dangerous. I'd say it's embarrassing but I think I've long since identified at all with any kind of hope for the United States. It's so deeply corrupt, it's a farce to think that a US candidate for President could change anything here. It's gotten that bad. Whoever does get elected, they have no power. Whoever does get selected I should say, it's just because they will follow through with the empire's desire for more war and devastation across the world.

Joe: That's very true I think and I think it even goes beyond that where the people who select these people to be President are funding and selecting these people to be candidates for President just to see how much farce they can push on the American people, how far they can push the American people. It's one step away from bringing a career clown in and having him run for President and then seeing how the American people react and because a lot of the American people are just so clueless about this and their minds have been so desensitized to anything real, honesty and truth and sincerity and integrity. They've been brought up on a diet of not just literally of toxic food and stuff, but toxic propaganda through TV and unreality through movies and reality TV shows.

These people who select these presidents and push them forward, the monied interest behind them, are doing it just to see how much they can get away with. If they could push a clown like Donald Trump on people and have them actually vote for him, or have them think and accept that they've voted for him because of course there's a good chance that votes are rigged to a certain extent and like we said, people are selected anyway. But if they could put Donald Trump in as President of America and people then accepted it, that "Okay, this is my leader", what would they be saying about themselves?

Just take it the next step further and imagine it was actually a career clown became president with a big red nose and funny hair and big long shoes and a bottle that squirts water and he got up and he told jokes at the Presidential inauguration and during the evening it was all about the "honk-honk" horns and stuff and that was his speech and people clapped and stuff.

Elan: On the subject of Trump, there was this little story that came out last week where he was forced to land his plane and of course this is just around the time of the Iowa caucuses and there was some accusations on the part of the Trump campaign that Ted Cruz's campaign managed to steal some votes from him somehow. There was some speculation if that forced landing for Trump's plane was some kind of message being sent to the Trump campaign to shut up and stop saying things about the Iowa caucus and behoved the fact that Cruz's campaign may have taken votes from him. Because another interesting fact is that Cruz is also being supported financially by Bill Gates and apparently Bill Gates is...

Niall: Or is that Marco Rubio?

Elan: Is it Marco Rubio?

Niall: Yeah. I think the theories a bit more convoluted than that. I think he's backing Rubio and the votes that Rubio got that would have otherwise gone to Trump, Trump seemed to be suggesting after the fact, were enough to make him lose it to Ted Cruz. But anyway yeah, the Trump team is calling foul on the results of the caucuses. And they're blaming Bill Gates.

Elan: Well it kind of made me wonder if maybe for so many months Trump has taken the spotlight with his entire campaign, even more so than Hillary. For bread and circuses purposes this might serve well but now it's kind of time to buckle down a little bit and the elite doesn't want Trump taking the limelight anymore.

Niall: This is your theory. Let's put it to the test.

Elan: Possibly.

Niall: Why would they not want Trump? Well Trump has obviously said some things favourable about Russia and Putin so that was something that crossed my mind.

Joe: That's a big no-no.

Niall: Absolute no-no. The other thing is he's more independent in the sense that he didn't come through a political system. He just arrived here. This is his first foray into politics. Can we control this guy? Probably. But I think they would always prefer a career politicians to ultimately emerge the winner because they have a whole catalogue of files and the history going back about this person which they use to control him or her. So there might be an element of that. Trump is crazy but he's also got an independent streak or something like that, that they're wary of.

Elan: Less controllable.

Niall: Perhaps. Or just too erratic, that he would make mistakes inadvertently because he's stupid enough.

Joe: Yeah, it's just a sorry state of affairs and at this point it doesn't matter. I don't know what percentage of the American population have switched off, not because they see that these are a bunch of idiots that are vying for being President. Probably very few people realize that. Most people I think in the US - and this is true in many other places around the world - are just not interested in politics because it's such a show. It's like a freak show and it's all such bluff and bluster and nonsense that most people just aren't interested. Most people probably gave up a long time ago even being interested in politics in general because they realize, not necessarily that they've developed a theory about it, but they realize almost viscerally that politics has nothing to do with their ordinary lives, no relevance, no bearing on their ordinary lives, at least not in a beneficial way.

Sure, they might see how it has a negative influence on their lives but they realize also that they can do nothing about that because no one's there listening to them so they're not getting anything out of politics or politicians that would help them in any way, certainly not at the national level. So they just switched off.

And of course there's lots of distraction for people to switch off and just ignore that whole area and let them carry on, let them do what they want.

Niall: What do you guys think of Bernie Sanders?

Shane: It seems to me that with each election the movers and the shakers need somebody who can just give a slight glimmer of hope that things can change for the better, somebody that has a little bit of rationality. Sanders has that little bit when it comes to domestic issues and perhaps a tiny, tiny bit when it comes to foreign policy but it's just part of the farce. It's not anything real. I see a lot of people in the alternative community who are feeling the burn and really pushing for him, but it's the faith in the political system I think that is missing the mark here because it's not just what a candidate represents, it's really the whole political system that is just completely corrupt. So one guy isn't (going to change anything). (inaudible).

Joe: Yeah, absolutely. Bernie Sanders strikes me as a Ron Paul redux.

Niall: But from the left this time.

Joe: From the last time, yeah. And the fact that Ron Paul appealed to the same kind of people and said the same kind of things even if it was on the opposite side of the "spectrum". But he was the only one of any note who spoke semi-rationally and spoke the truth and made sense basically. So what happened to Ron Paul, I understand in the last two elections, Ron Paul was involved in? I'm sure the vast majority of American voters would have been "Yeah, let's have him because he makes sense". But somehow the shiny hopey changey Obama guy gets in, because he was pushed in I suppose, and the same thing will happen this time. If Bernie Sanders is your only option amongst Hillary, Creepy Cruz, Dufus Jock Trump and...

Niall: Jeb - please don't call me George - Bush.

Joe: And "please clap for me" Bush. Well then yeah, you're going to take Bernie Sanders, right?

Niall: That happened to him. Jeb Bush went to the latest TV republican debate. He got called up by the announcer or the Fox News presenter or something and each one comes out one by one from behind a screen. "And the next candidate from Florida, George Bush!" God! "Oh sorry, sorry." That's how bad it is.

Joe: What does it matter? It's a Bush. Just say "and from Florida...

Niall: "Representing the Bush dynasty...

Joe: ..."another Bush. Here's a Bush." They should just pull out an actual bush you know. "There's a bush, just because why not. There have been a few of them in there."

Niall: Here's the thing though, you mentioned Obama. In the sense of, the context of what we're discussing, about an elite behind these puppets who pushes one out or rigs the system so that their most favourite one ends up winning it. The last time, 2008 and 2012, that was a spectacular move, absolutely spectacular. People voted for Obama in droves, especially the first time. There was a guy who could string sentences together, said the right things right on cue. How come they haven't been able to come up with someone like that this time? Are the options that short?

Joe: Well they don't care anymore.

Shane: I think so. I think they don't really have any options anymore. It's really ridiculous. There's an article up on SOTT now that Rupert Murdoch wants to see Kerry get into the game just because Hillary seems to be tanking. I have my questions about that too. I tend to think that Hillary will end up with the presidency just because she's the most qualified in terms of just causing massive death and destruction all over the world. It makes her the ideal candidate. She is the ideal representative of all the things that are wrong with America. You could say the same for Trump as well but she has this background where she is going in the direction that the elite want to go and she says all the things that really do represent all the things that the US has come to represent.

Niall: Has Sanders mentioned anything about the democrat caucuses in Iowa being rigged? Because that was a lot more dubious on the face of it than what happened over at the republican version.

Elan: He actually has. He's come out and wanted to have some kind of well audited recount. Unfortunately it's like all the forces conspired against him. I forget what her name is, I think it's Debbie Wasserman-Schultz, who's one of the head of the democratic party, came in and effectively said "No, it's Hillary and we're not going to discuss it anymore." That's the short story about that. But this lady, Debbie Wasserman, if that's her name is a well known diehard Hillary advocate. So you couple that with the fact that the Microsoft ad, all of their technology involved to count the votes in the Iowa caucus and Bill Gates made no bones about being for Hillary Clinton. It's just like that guy who was president of Diebold effectively saying in the early or mid 2000s "We are going to deliver the election to you George Bush". It's that clear that we're even hearing these statements coming out in the alternative media, that there is a conspiracy to put people into office and it's all based on the technology and the power and who these guys decide they want to put in because they know that they're going to get their bread buttered at the end of the day by these people.

Joe: Yeah.

Elan: They have a track record.

Shane: I think technology tends to play a part in creating the votes but I think a more important influence is the media and how they'll direct people's' attention because I think they do even with the rigging. I think they still do want to present this illusion of democracy and so they do need to have this influence over people who they are shown to support. I think that's major engineering.

Elan: I think you're right Shane. When Shane said that, I was reminded of when Howard Dean was running I think in 2004 or 2008 for the democratic nominee. Here was a guy who was a doctor, pretty articulate, pretty well-meaning I guess for a politician. I think I mentioned this some months back on The Truth Perspective. He was at one of these campaign trail talks and started yelping, screaming with enthusiasm. So these microphones that were right next to him picked up the {yelping sound} which is literally what he sounded like and the next week the entire mainstream media came out and said "Howard Dean-unpresidential". And that was it. On the basis of this enthusiastic yelp, they finally got their narrative set where "He's unpresidential!" And so this feeling was spread and that was the end of the campaign for the man. Whether or not he would have been a good president is another story I suppose but I think that that's kind of how it works.

And lately, if you ever scroll down the pages of Yahoo News and you see all the articles, you see similar things being said about why Trump could never win or these other things that have less to do with the substance of the man than just these pseudo-analyses about him. So I agree with what Shane said. I think that the media does play a huge part in shaping who we think should be president.

Joe: It gets back to that point we were making earlier on which is that the media pretty much works for vested interests in corporate America but also there's the repeated claims by various different people that high level members of the media, either producers or even reporters, are all in some way or another in the pay of intelligence agencies where it is made clear to these people that "national security or the good of the country and stuff is at stake and you need to make sure that you're saying the right things to the American people". That goes way back to McCarthy and back to the "commie" era.

So that's a well entrenched, long standing state effectively where the media is not impartial. It's very far from impartial and is working for, like I said, corporate America but also the shadow government, the deep government, whatever. But this idea has been around for a long time as well that obvious the commander-in-chief isn't the commander-in-chief. He doesn't make the decisions. The President is just a puppet head. When you think the President of America, think about the Queen of England; pretty much exactly the same role and the people who actually run the country are select groups ensconced in little areas, even within Congress or within the Senate but also with ties to intelligence agencies, etc. And I see the intel agencies - I'm talking about the FBI, CIA, NSA and all the rest of them - who have for many, many decades determined and directed the course of American domestic policy and foreign policy and they do it independently, beyond any oversight of Congress, the President or anything like that who are largely just figureheads there to keep the American people believing in democracy which hasn't existed in America for a long time.

It brings it back to the idea of it being such a farce, that people would be getting all excited and waving flags for their candidate who's going to lead the country when the idea is so far from the truth of the matter it's ridiculous. The whole situation is like a really bad reality TV show. The feeling I get in looking at what's going on in the world and the way it's being conducted and knowing what I know and what we know about how things actually operate, it's like a really, really bad reality TV show, that as it goes on it becomes more and more disturbing, more and more jarring and disgusting to watch. It's just not wholesome in anyway. It's ridiculous. It's farcical.

But unfortunately you are forced to a certain extent to keep watching it. But in the process as it gets more and more ridiculous and farcical and descends into more and more chaos, that actually serves the purpose of you, the person watching it, feeling more and more distance from it. You feel less and less identified with it because they diverge increasingly so much from your own understanding of the way the world works and what the normal human values, etc. are, when you see these people as representatives of the human race diverging more and more from your own values, you increasingly remove yourself or detach yourself from any identification with this. You're happy to just let them go and do their thing.

You're no longer invested ultimately, to a certain extent, in the fate of this world because you realize it's going to a really ridiculous and probably very bad place and you realize you're not going there. "I can't go there. I'm sorry, but I can't do what you're doing. I can't be involved in that kind of pantomime that you're putting on."

Shane: You mentioned Joe how much of this political race is like a reality TV show. I just find it pretty ironic that Trump, the frontrunner in the republican party, did have his own reality TV show. You were saying earlier too how much of a circus this is. When you watch the debates - I've never watched a full debate and I probably won't but I'll catch highlights here and there - it is so dumbed down and ridiculous, even the questions that are asked from these supposed reporters. It's just so very base that it's appalling. I think it was the last debate with Sanders and Clinton the question that came up, which comes up repeatedly is what's the biggest threat to the United States. What a ridiculous question. It's such a focus for...

Niall: The right answer was mosquitoes, right?

Shane: Yeah, Clinton had the right answer which was Russia.

Niall: Oh.

Shane: Was that what you said Niall?

Niall: No. For the biggest threat to the United States, the right answer should have been mosquitoes.

Shane: Oh, mosquitoes! Yes.

Niall: You're right. It's such an absurd question. How can you get an accurate point-blank answer to that? But of course they're pre-programmed to go, "Okay. I understand this question. This is the question where we're put to the test. Do we know the ABCs of who our number one world threat is because of all the secret agenda of what we really are, which is an empire." That automatically goes through the person's mind when they hear the question. They don't actually think about it and then they go "Oh, yeah, Russia". But it's so disconnected from reality you may as well answer "mosquitoes".

Joe: Yeah.

Niall: Which is to have a more objective basis in fact.

Joe: Or you could just say scary things. What's the biggest threat to America right now? "Well I would say the biggest threat to America right now is the things that threaten America, particularly the biggest of those would be the one that probably the biggest threat.

Niall: Right now.

Joe: "Yeah, the biggest threat right now is the most threatening thing to America." And on scary things, the scariest thing would be that which is the scariest thing, you know, that's scary, maybe the boogieman for example. "Well you tell me what's scary to you and that's what's scary." What scares the American people? Scary things? Anything I can think of I can scare them with and then tell them that's the biggest threat to America because it scares them the most. That was Osama Bin Laden. That's kind of the way it is. He just produced these threats as a pantomime, where you just pull out the scary costume and throw it on the stage. Ask people at a pantomime what's the biggest threat in this pantomime and they'll say "Well it's the scary guy who everybody shouts "Look out! He's behind you!" and he keeps turning around and the guy keeps turning around behind him and he can't see him. And they're like "No, behind you!" That's what's scary to people. That's as I said from the American people's' point of view, whatever they're told.

Niall: Shane you were saying Sanders and the other democrat - was it just him and Hillary - they were being asked what's the biggest threat to America, and they answered?

Shane: First Sanders said ISIS and then for some reason, I didn't catch why, but one of the news reporters was giving him some crap for it so he changed his answer to North Korea because they were outside of the international community and had nuclear weapons, blah, blah, blah. And Clinton of course came out with Russia and their support for the "dictator Assad" and they're trying to annex new lands and all this other garbage that was basically what you said; a rehashing of all the propaganda points that have been jammed down people's' throats for the last couple of years.

Niall: Yeah, she's thinking of what the bosses want to hear. She's smart like that. She knows what the bosses want to hear. That's what the media's going with so they adjust their answers according to what they think is supposed to be said. So is it basically just Clinton and Sanders in the running on the left? Is anyone else a serious candidate?

Elan: I think there's also Martin O'Malley who...

Niall: Haven't heard of him.

Elan: ...inherited one percent. Yeah, he might have been the governor of Maryland for a while or something.

Shane: Yeah.

Niall: You just answered my question.

Bahar: O'Malley dropped out I think.

Shane: Yeah, he did drop out.

Elan: Oh yeah.

Niall: So there's just two of them then. So it's Sanders/Clinton on the left and maybe three on the right, but really it's looking like either Trump or Ted Cruz. Ted Cruz is so revolting! Trump is too, but Trump is entertaining.

Shane: He's so unlikable.

Elan: He's like a possum.

Niall: A really ugly, sanguine fascist one! Speaking of which - oh who's there?

Bahar: Bahar.

Niall: Yeah, what do you think of the American election.

Bahar: I just have a small comment. I usually don't watch these political debates but I watched a little bit of the republican debate and Joe and Shane, everyone, they're right. It really feels like a big show. They present an issue and they make these promises and then people are cheering and I'm kind of like "Well how do you know they're not lying?" It's like they've lost their ability to be critical and to listen to them and say "Okay, so that's what you want to do", but don't jump the gun and cheer for them, because that's what people did when Obama was running for President and look how many people are disappointed now.

I also noticed that there was a lot of fear-mongering going on in the questions they asked, like Shane said, mentioning Iran being a big threat and North Korea and immigrants. Maybe people are just so afraid that they take the best chance they can get in having some kind of protection, I'm not really sure about that.

Joe: Yeah, it's interesting that one of the focuses in those debates is on what the biggest threat to America is because the American people are watching this and they're hearing the idea that there's a threat to them, etc. so there are these so-called leaders answering how "we're" going to deal with this threat. That obviously builds and reinforces the idea of authority in people's' lives and the most important idea of a threat or a danger to the people that they need an authority to protect them against. So they go through this charade effectively, of just reaffirming the need for an authority in the American peoples' lives and reaffirming to the American people that they need an authority in their lives and this is what this vote's all about. It's about there "being a threat to you and you needing authority to protect you against it."

It's very childish in a way, although it's very fundamental to human nature as well but when you look behind the scenes, look behind their words and see the kind of people they are, these are the worst people to be leading anybody.

Bahar: Yeah, exactly.

Joe: They don't give a crap about anybody except themselves.

Shane: It's become a very American thing, for the US to create these enemies and just the whole landscape is based on this idea that there is this boogieman or boogiemen and it's being constantly being driven through people's' minds, particularly since 9/11 I think. It's one after the other. It's been nonstop.

Joe: Right.

Shane: And it reinforces this idea that the American people have that the United States is this world peacekeeper or the world's policeman, which is a total lie, unless you compare it to their actual police force. Then it starts to make sense. The way that the everyday police act in the US is how the United States acts on the world stage.

Joe: On the global stage.

Shane: Big bullies just committing unthinkable crimes against people.

Niall: Yeah, they shoot you in the head first and then work out what your crimes were.

Joe: It's interesting that you mention 9/11. I think it's important for people to always remember that 9/11 was that defining moment when everything changed because it was unprecedented in terms of the "coming out" let's say, a coming out party. 9/11 was a coming out party for the pathological psychopaths who rule and have ruled the US and largely the world for quite a long time. But on 9/11 they came out and said "We're taking control here. We're coming onto the stage and we're setting a new standard of evil" where they orchestrate this 9/11 event. Think about everything that has happened since then, the use of 9/11 to justify the invasion of Iraq and Afghanistan. It was a complete farce, was exposed as a farce and a pack of lies not long after it actually happened and everything that we're dealing with today, all of the most important issues and all of these threats that people are talking about and the US Presidential candidates are talking about, all stem from the actions that were taken on the basis of 9/11. The world has been effectively set on a course to ruin and destruction right at the very level of the fabric of society because of 9/11 and the events that were initiated on that day.

We can segue here into the so-called refugee crisis in Europe which is being heavily pushed, and has been for the past year or more, that is a direct result of 9/11. People maybe forget about that because 9/11 was 15 years ago, but it's a direct result of 9/11 because it set off the warmongers on their imperial adventures into the Middle East and it's not hard for most people with any awareness of what's gone on over the past 15 years can see that the refugee crisis resulted from that invasion of those countries in the Middle East.

Today it's being pushed by these same powers to create this refugee crisis. Not only do they create it through their warmongering and their destruction of countries like Libya, Syria and Iraq, but then they actually facilitate it. Those invasions and destructions of those countries create the refugees in a real way but there seems to be a lot of evidence that then the facilitation of the movement of refugees had actually been deliberately orchestrated to push those refugees into Europe to then create social chaos, upheaval and division within Europeans countries. Of course there's political rationale behind it all, but it still stems from this imperial aggression that began with 9/11.

Right now in Syria you have these factions; Turkey worried about the Kurds coming to take a chunk of Syria. They also have the gas and oil pipeline interests. Turkey's involved there and of course the Saudis. The Gulf states are involved. They're all fighting with each other and Turkey seems to be front and centre because of its position in that part of the world right next to Europe. Turkey seems to be playing a specific role in facilitating the movement of refugees into Europe as a way to - I don't know - achieve some bizarre, ridiculous objective of Turkey.

But then maybe behind the scenes there another broader agenda to simply give European countries and the European Union a problem with these refugees all the better to control them. And of course the people who want to control Europe the most are the American faction because they're worried about Europe falling into the hands of Russia. It's bizarre. I was just reading a story today that the number of Syrians trying to cross into Turkey because of an upsurge in fighting in northern Syria, has nearly doubled, according to a Turkish official. He says that something like another 75,000 refugees had reached the border of Syria into Turkey, that they wanted in. And of course Turkey was given €3 billion just late last year by the European Union to deal with the refugee crisis and now the leaders of the European Union are having to say to Turkey, "Hey, could you by any chance use those €3 billion we gave you to deal with the refugee crisis as in house them in Turkey, stop them coming in?"

But of course people are still fleeing the ongoing war in Syria and that war, despite Russian efforts, does not seem to be abating very much at all because it seems that the people behind it, the people who are funding and training these jihadis - this ISIS, Daesh, whatever you want to call it, these mercenaries from all around the world - the people who are funding them have an unlimited amount of money and supplies and resources to keep flooding Syria with these mercenary fighters who create this chaos that forces Syrians to leave the country.

At some point it just takes on a life of its own almost. It almost gets out of the hands of the people who think they were controlling it for a certain period of time. They had a specific objective but at some point when they just push it too far it takes on a life of its own and at that point you really have actual chaos, not even managed chaos anymore. You have real chaos and no one knows where it goes from there, except downwards.

Shane: Well with the refugee crisis I think there are a lot of parallels between that and the discussion of US politics, which is rooted in this very fear-based mentality which completely shuts down critical thinking. I'm sure many Europeans aren't thinking about "Okay, we've been in this bad situation and our economy is in shatters and on the brink of collapse" but all that angst, frustration and fear is being channeled towards these refugees and they're being set up as the scapegoats. So they're manufacturing this problem but also their trying to direct the solution which is very, very frightening in terms of the direction that it's going.

Joe: Yeah it is. Bahar you're in the Netherlands. It isn't really the primary country where refugees are coming but I think there are a few there. What's your take on the situation at this point?

Bahar: We've had a lot of refugees coming in so there has been a lot of uproar because of one particular political party which is led by Geert Wilders and he has been telling people to make a stand and tell their governments that they don't want any refugees coming in because he tells that that "It's you the people that has to pay for them".

So there's been a lot of violence against refugees and against these groups of people who want to organize some housing and food for refugees and some courses. More and more Dutch people are against it. So that's starting to be worrisome. But then again you have these groups of people who understand the point of view of the refugees and they do all they can to provide them a good home and to provide them lessons and language or otherwise. I can't say if there is a balance but it's worrisome for me at least that I see that there is a lot of hatred going on. It might be that the majority might agree that they don't want any refugees from wherever to come to Holland anymore, but that's how it is.

Joe: Have you talked to anybody, Bahar? Are you getting the word on the street from any local Dutch people on what they think? Is there anybody that you have heard apportion or put the blame at the doorstep of those who are responsible, which is a no brainer for people. It should be obvious that the reason there are all these refugees is because...

Niall: Their homes were blown up by NATO.

Joe: ... and were bombed.

Bahar: Yeah, and Holland actually recently decided to bomb Syria as well. Normally they just Iraq but now they added Syria to their list. I believe I sent an article today saying that Dutch bombs have caused civilian casualties. So like it said, who are the real enemies here?

Niall: So the Dutch government is going to solve the refugee issue in Holland by bombing houses and creating refugees in Syria who will then come to Holland which problem will be solved by bombing houses in Syria and around and around it goes.

Bahar: Yes.

Niall: It's so psychopathic. Have you heard of the moment with the acronym PEGIDA) Patriotic Europeans Against the Islamisation of the West)?

Bahar: German?

Niall: Well they were German. The acronym stands for Patriotic Europeans Against the Islamisation of the West. There are now branches all over western Europe. They had lots of rallies. They didn't bring out torches and stuff, not yet. We're not quite there yet, but they had rallies yesterday I think, across Europe. I caught some footage of the one in England and people at the front were holding posters saying "Donald is right!" I thought that's kind of fitting because here we are lampooning a farce in the US where these clowns are put up and we're wondering who's taking this seriously. Well the answer is there's a sizable chunk of people who take it seriously in Europe too.

Bahar: Yes.

Niall: And they find each other. They find their level. They naturally come together in their association of ideas because there are people marching in Europe, backers of Trump - not that their vote will ever count. Trump will never have their vote to thank for getting into power if he ever does. I don't know what I think of that. It's just an interesting observation.

Elan: You know Niall, there seems to be two camps of people I guess in the US and Europe. One group like Pegida like you mentioned and Bahar has seen the political activism of, and then you have a whole other set of people who, like those people in Italy some months back, who are protesting NATO's incursions and war games in Europe, who see where that whole thing is leading and they get it. They get, I think, that this whole problem of migrants and refugees would not have occurred if the situation on the ground hadn't been created by the West to begin with. That's largely left out of the equation for most voters in the US, for instance.

It's all about reacting to the problems as they're being communicated or framed and none of the questioners during these debates for instance, would even go on and say "What do you think of the argument that we created this situation to begin with?" That's why basically the default solution among most of these governments is not to question how these situations were created to start with but "Let's just go bomb Syria". I think the French had the same sentiment, the Brits. It's "Let's react to the situation emotionally" because all of this is an appeal to the emotions. There's no information that informs people's' reactions to all this among those in Pegida. So I think that those people of Pegida and those other organizations either don't understand or they're not informed and they're just reacting and their worst impulses are being pushed like buttons.

Niall: Yeah. And the political process adapts to appeal to that reactionary element. So it just happens to be an election year in the US so the rhetoric is all the more reactionary. It naturally taps into what's going on at the moment. It's not just happening in the US. It's similar in Europe as well. You've got "mainstream politicians" on the defensive because what were previously fringe parties saying things that they could ignore safely because it wouldn't have any traction in the general public, are having traction now. You just don't know where it's going to go.

Joe: Yeah, we have Stephen in Tampa Bay on the phone here. Hi Stephen. Hello Stephen.

Edward: Hello.

Joe: Hi Stephen.

Edward: This is Edward. How you doing?

Joe: Edward.

Edward: Yeah.

Joe: Okay. I was told your name was Stephen. Are you in Tampa Bay?

Edward: Actually no, I'm in the Orlando area.

Joe: Okay.

Edward: But not far from Tampa Bay.

Joe: Okay. Go ahead. Have you got something to tell us? A question or a comment?

Edward: Well I was just going to comment on the fact that I think there's one constitutional candidate, Cruz who has problems because he was born in Canada. I just don't know how it's going to go for his campaign. Rand Paul was the other constitutional candidate and both of these candidates want the federal reserve to be audited and they want to downsize the District of Corruption and return the power back to the states where it belongs.

Joe: Uh-huh.

Edward: I just wondered how you felt about that.

Joe: Auditing the Fed for example?

Edward: Yeah.

Joe: Well what are the chances of that ever happening? A lot of people have said that in recent years.

Edward: Well we only missed it by seven votes last time and it's been going on - I think we're having a better chance if more people know about it. There's a good chance that might happen. And also by reinstating states' rights, making the states realize that that's what the United States is about, the states were the ones that formed the compact to give DC its existence in the first place, that we can actually do our own form of trade policies in our own state and use gold, silver - or in Colorado they'll be using marijuana, same as Oregon, whatever - to trade and barter amongst ourselves without interference from the District of Corruption.

Joe: Yeah, the District of Corruption. That's a good term for it, Washington, DC. Those are certainly better options than what's going on right now but how you implement them and how you reach a majority or a large number of American people with those ideas and have them get out in the streets and demand it, that kind of thing, that's the real problem.

Edward: But we are bringing it out. In Colorado there's a lot of people growing hemp now that never were. There's a lot of people that aren't in cages anymore that were. We're creating medical marijuana - got it on the ballot again here in Florida for this upcoming election. I think that we're marching in the right directions by persisting, persisting, persisting, for states' rights. And only 10% of the people favour DC so DC's losing its favour because people are starting to realize it's evil there. Both the democrats and the republicans are sold out. They've both been co-opted and I think the people in the United States are waking up.

Joe: Who are you going to vote for? Anybody?

Edward: Well actually I'm a registered libertarian although I consider myself an anti-federalist and I don't really believe in the party systems. Orwell said it best about how the parties just exist for themselves. But the convention's actually in Orlando in May and we'll be choosing our candidate there. I kind of like Rand Paul but he's gone already. Cruz, I'm listening to him. I'm see what's going to happen with his campaign. At least he's talking the talk for states' rights and for getting back to the constitution and for shutting down a lot of the programs in DC. So he'd be my favourite in the republic between the two bought and paid for icons of the federal reserve which are republican and democratic party. I would probably say Cruz. They don't like him so that's another reason I like him. If the establishment don't like him, that's a good reason to like him.

So I would say I'd lean towards Cruz although I never voted for a democrat or republican in my life for President because they never had a constitutional conservative. And that's including Reagan because Reagan was big on the war on drugs and Reagan was the one that that gave us this amnesty bill in the first place that opened borders. They were supposed to close the borders but they never did and that's really what's got us in the mess we're at because we've got 15-20 million criminal invaders in our country that are driving down our wages, using our support system that were funded by the state, causing us much, much more money and the open border treasonous in both the democratic and republican parties want to keep this going.

Joe: Okay, thanks for your call. We've got a couple of other calls on the line here.

Edward: I'll put it on mute so I can listen.

Joe: Alright. We have Laurie. Hi Laurie. She's not a host.

Laurie: Hello. How are you?

Joe: Not too bad. How you doing yourself?

Laurie: I'm good. But is Edward listening to the same radio show that I am?

Joe: Probably not.

Laurie: My husband watches TV news. I watch it sometimes but it just blows my mind how much stuff is going on the world that's really important and all they ever have is fluff. They don't talk about, for example, the situation in California with the gas coming out of the ground and the sinkholes and the refugee crises everywhere. You don't hear about any of these major things on the news shows. They're more interested in what's trending on Twitter and stuff. It just blows my mind.

Joe: Yeah, it's amazing what's offered to people is, like you said, 80% fluff and nonsense and when they do talk about important things, they're not really the important things. They're the kind of things that always seem to direct people's' attention towards authorities and believing in authorities.

Laurie: Yeah.

Joe: A lot of it's about which candidate do you want to vote for, What leader do you want to vote for.

Laurie: You guys were talking about some of the things that the candidates say, especially Trump. It scares the hell out of me that he might actually win the presidency. What is the world going to look like if that happens? It's horrifying.

Joe: I know. It's just like some dystopian, weird, freakish, clownish reality that we just entered into and it's like "how did we get here?" You know what I mean?

Laurie: Yes it is! It's like "Oh my god! Really?" The distraction that is on the television all the time! I read SOTT and I read the news and there's so many things going on that are really important and nobody wants to pay attention to anything.

Joe: Laurie, do people that you know, in your neighbourhood or whatever, do you talk to them or get an idea of what they think about Trump for example?

Laurie: I do. I talk to a lot of people and most people feel kind of the same way I do. They don't believe that it's actually happening. And I keep telling myself I can't believe it's actually happening too and that his popularity is freakish.

Niall: Or so they tell us. He did just lose unexpectedly in an actual vote.

Joe: But even that he's up there, type of thing, is really strange. You mentioned Laurie that a lot of people you talk to feel as you do about Trump, that he's just a freak, a clown and they don't know how it's happening but we're told that Trump has a lot of support. You see these rallies and stuff but still you can't get a good idea of just how many people in the US for example, would actually support Trump. It brings into question of whether it's being managed in a certain sense, that it is effectively a stage show. They may say that if Trump were to become President, it may be that only 10% of the population ever actually intended to vote for him but somehow he could become President anyway.

Laurie: Yeah. One of you said earlier, it's like we've entered some kind of different reality.

Joe: Yeah. I think we have.

Laurie: I don't even know what to think.

Joe: Well I would just call it what it is. It's not hard to see that everything really is like a farce. It's ridiculous. None of it makes any sense. None of it is sincere. None of it is honest. There's no truth anywhere. There's no integrity amongst any of these people. So the thing to think is that that's what it is. That's what you should just keep constating or reminding yourself of, that this is just ridiculous. This is not something I want to be a part of. It's not something I'm interested in supporting in any way. I suppose you have to wash your hands of it to a certain extent and just keep going as best you can and keep an eye on the news I suppose because you never know. You might have to take some evasive action if some kind of Trump rally rolls into town or something.

Laurie: Yes! Good point. Lay low. But watching it and living within this whole crazy show that's going on, I keep telling myself "Is this real? Is this really happening?"

Elan: Seeing it exactly for what it is and the way that you're describing Laurie is actually a very healthy thing because in a way when you're being compelled to choose your favourite candidate, you're kind of becoming unwittingly complicit in the acts of all of the elitists and warmongers of the US. It's sort of like drawing you in and making a person a part of this system in a way. It's like not even thinking about the torture for instance, and its implications and how evil it is. There are some things you need to, at a very basic level even, just think about and take a stand on, if only for yourself.

Laurie: Yeah. Well I tell people when I talk to them about the refugee crisis, "This has been done by our government in our name" and I don't want to participate. But I keep that in my mind. They're doing it in our name and it's horrible!

Elan: Exactly.

Laurie: All over the world we're wreaking havoc everywhere and all we can do is bitch and complain if we didn't get a new screen TV so we can watch the damn screwballs.

Joe: Yeah.

Elan: It's funny you mention that because there's an article on SOTT right now by Andre Vltchek. He's a political analyst, writes for New Eastern Outlook usually and he's got a paragraph in his article Please do not poison my mind with the US elections. He asks
...this voting and "following the elections" just some expression of extreme intellectual laziness, of the need for entertainment of the lowest grade? Is gazing at television screens and listening to the debates really so much different from just statically watching baseball or football games? If Mr. Trump or Ms. Clinton wins, it would most likely make the same difference as if the ball flew in between three poles, on the right or left side of the field.
And then he says
For some people it matters. Tens of millions of fans in Europe, North and South America see their lives revolving around games. Real games or video games... It is a matter of life and death. And so are the elections, even if they are meaningless and change nothing.
So to us it's this bread and circuses Super Bowl of political elections and even though it doesn't make a whit of difference who gets elected, people's' lives are on the line around the world based on which psycho comes to office.


Niall: Not necessarily, no. That suggests that it does matter, that you're invested in it, that you sway a certain outcome. No, it's more like it doesn't matter. It's like you're watching the Kardashian show and it doesn't matter whether Caitlin or Kim wins because...

Joe: Because it's not real.

Niall: Basically. But their existence and the system that they front for is real and has real live consequences.

Joe: But whether or not they get elected has no bearing...

Niall: No bearing...

Joe: ...on what happens.

Niall: ...on who gets to live and who gets to die.

Joe: Right. So people should just switch off and ignore it. The best thing everybody could do actually about the US presidential election is just stop participating whatsoever. Withdraw any support or any interest in it whatsoever. And obviously at the polling stations it would just be "Do not vote!" For me that's always been the most effective popular action that anybody can take, is to not vote. Just don't go. Just do not vote.

Laurie: Yeah.

Joe: And then let them work it out.

Laurie: In terms of this authoritarian follower thing, I've been paying attention to people and watching since I've been reading about it on SOTT and the forum and people are so invested in backing a winner that they don't even notice anything else. They have this myopic vision. "Oh, my guy won!" Same with the Super Bowl. They can't see past the end of their nose.

Shane: That's very similar to the impression that I've had when speaking to various people about the debates and who's going to be President, that it is much more similar to a sports discussion. "Yeah, this is my team and I'm going to root for them, identify with them". There isn't any underlying genuine concern for what's actually going on in the world and what's happening as a result of the political system in the US being so awful. It is just more of a matter of wanting to be right or wanting to be the winner.

Joe: Yeah, absolutely.

Laurie: And everybody's actually losing in the end. All of us.

Joe: Yeah. Just walk away. If people stop supporting football games, if people's' interest in football games for example, or any sporting events just evaporated overnight, those sporting games would end because there'd be no more revenue, no more interest, no more people and there'd be no more need for them so they'd just go away. I'm not saying that would happen with the politicians, but if nobody voted in an election, if there was zero votes, can you imagine?! What would they do? What would they say? There would be a serious crisis there and it would be making a very definite declaration. Of course any time that idea comes up in the media you have all sorts of media pundits come out and say "Oh, that a terrible thing but how can you expect to participate in the process? How do you expect to change anything in your country if you don't actually exercise your democratic right to vote?" And you get these harpies, these sirens sending out this message to infect the minds of people that no matter what happens you should get out there and vote all the time.

Well you know what? If voting is about making a statement about what you want, then the strongest statement you can make is to not vote at all, particularly in the context or in the situation where the people that you're being asked to vote for are a bunch of degenerates who do not deserve to be in any kind of office at all unless it's the office of...

Niall: With white padded rooms.

Joe: Exactly. Anyway, listen Laurie, thanks a million for your call.

Laurie: Thanks for talking to me guys.

Joe: And keep listening.

Laurie: Okay, I will.

Joe: Will we put you on hold or do you to continue listening this way?

Laurie: No, I'll go back and listen to my computer.

Joe: Alrighty. Have a good day.

Laurie: Alright, thanks. Bye.

Joe: We'll just go - Kent's been hanging on here. Kent, West Virginia. Are you receiving us?

Kent: Yeah, how you doin'?

Joe: I'm doing okay.

Kent: Can you hear me?

Joe: Yeah.

Kent: I'm a little bit older than you guys and I've been predicting since...

Joe: No!

Kent: And I've been predicting since back in August that Donald Trump's going to win. Here's what happened. I lived through the Jimmy Carter experience back in 1976 and the parallels are pretty striking. At the time you had, coming off the Nixon/Ford run. Everybody knew it was going to be a democratic president so you had 12 or 15 guys coming out of the woodwork to run for President, take their chance. And they were all senators, congressmen, governors. They had jobs. And Jimmy Carter went out there. He was affluent and he went out there and spent months out there kissing babies and shaking hands. And he had a Harvard trained pollster, Patrick Caddell, and all of a sudden this caucus comes up and all these nondescript guys, senators, congressmen, blah, blah, blah, and out of this group comes this grinning Goober. And he wins. He gets 26%. I think somebody else got 24.3 or something, the margin of victory.

But anyway, he was on the top of the heap and all of a sudden the media just swarmed over him and it was just uncontrollable. And "Who is he?" And here he was smiling. His slogan was "Trust me" and he'd have a big grin on there and America just went stupid and crazy and there just was absolutely no stopping him and we all know what happened. It's my impression that the same thing's happening with Trump. He had all these bland characters and out he comes and insults them and everything. It remains to be seen whether I'm right, but I've been on record since August. I don't really relish it because I've always hated the guy, but I really hate all the other candidates too.

There's not far to go before there's an election and it seems like it's been going on for a year already and then Jimmy Carter's to blame for that because the success that he enjoyed meant that everybody else who wanted to think about being president - if you listen and you live in this country "somebody's going to Iowa, it could be three years ago, somebody's going to Iowa. He's running for President. It's just idiotic.

Joe: Yeah.

Kent: And as far as the debates, I guess we can really blame those on Kennedy because Lincoln and Douglas had debates 150 years ago and then the Kennedy/Nixon debates and then there weren't any debates. And then in the '70s or the '80s "Oh, we ought to have debates". They're boring as hell and up until this year they were different because up until now - I never watched them - but you would hear the reports - nobody made a fatal gaff and nobody scored a knockout punch. I know that you have those debates over there in Europe because I would hear reports coming from places like Sweden and France where they want to ape what goes on in the United States, democracy, they have these debates, and I'd hear these same exact phrases. "Nobody scored a knockout punch".

But this year they're a bit rockish. Actually they're an improvement over what's gone on before but it's idiotic to choose your President based on this sort of spectacle.

Joe: Yeah, absolutely. Well said.

Kent: I think Trump's your President. I don't relish it, I really don't, but really if you look at the candidates, Bernie Sanders has some positive aspects and Rand Paul. Those were the only two that did have any sort of positive aspects to them. I don't know what'll happen but Trump at least would be entertaining. That's all I can say about it.

Joe: Yeah, he'd put on a good show, a good reality TV show.

Kent: Yeah.

Joe: That's the most we can hope for at this stage.

Kent: Yeah. So that's just my comment. I think he's going to win. I hate to tell you that, but I don't see it changing. Americans are stupid you know. They're fixated. You can do no wrong. Like Jimmy Carter was just the same way. Anybody who's lived through that, you can go back and read about that. Who was he? His party turned against him and he's an outsider and he's this and he's that. There were people going down to Plains, Georgia. His younger brother had a gas station and people were making pilgrimages down to the little town where he lived because they were so infatuated with him. I'm having déjà vu. I hope I'm wrong. I'm done.

Joe: Thanks a million for calling Kent. Have a good day.

Niall: Thanks Kent. Bye-bye. I'm hoping for a Clinton/Trump ticket.

Joe: Oh yeah?

Niall: The dream team.

Joe: Yeah, that would be good.

Niall: That would be just kick ass.

Joe: Trump could then say "I could kill someone" and Hillary could go "Ah-ha-ha-ha". Trump could say "I could kill someone and still not lose voters" and then Hillary could go and do it.

Niall: Yeah.

Joe: Then she could go and actually kill the people.

Niall: Yeah, and it could be on like Saturday Night Live except they go "That was actually real". And then they wouldn't know if it was comedy, if it was real. Doesn't matter.

Joe: Doesn't matter. Doesn't matter at all.

Niall: Sanders was actually on Saturday Night Live this week. This is a serious one, he was on a comedy skit.

Joe: Yeah. It's all a big joke anyway.

Niall: To get the votes. It might be a topic for another day, but maybe the problem is democracy.

Joe: Yeah. Dumb-ocracy.

Niall: I mean, if America is the leading democracy and this is also the leading problem in the world, the United States as an institution the way it's become today, maybe the problem is democracy.

Joe: Yeah! We need dictatorship.

Niall: Of some kind. Dictatorship has a negative connotation precisely because the democrats gave it one, but maybe that's not actually true. Somebody was going to say something there. Shane?

Shane: I was just going to say that it strikes me that the creation of so-called modern democracy has really made people susceptible to pathological types because they do identify and attach themselves more than they would under a different system, under an overt dictatorship. Or even going back hundreds of years, people didn't identify with their leaders like they do now. it just seems that that creates this opening where they do accept the pathological traits and behaviour more readily I think.

Joe: Yeah, I think it's more easily masked under the idea of democracy because you have all these people running for election. "Anybody can be President" basically so you can get anybody to come up through the ranks.

Niall: Yeah. The assumption is that competition breeds the best. I think the evidence is in that competition in fact ends up breeding the worst; in the corporate world, the media world, etc. etc. Capitalism always tends to monopoly which is the same as communism and democracy always tends to a dictatorship of sorts.

Joe: Especially in a ponerized world or world run by psychopaths or the whole system. No system is inherently bad unless it's under the influence of psychopaths.

Niall: Agreed. Do you want to touch on our other subtopic for today?

Joe: The economy.

Niall: "It's the economy, stupid!"

Joe: Yes. That's our only saving grace. The economy is going to come and save everybody by throwing itself off a cliff and just upsetting the whole farcical game that we're being forced to sit and watch and pretend is real when it's not really real at all. It's not serious. These people are not serious people with the exception of one or two maybe, but none of the frontrunners are serious people. Look at Donald Trump. He's not a serious person. Of course he looks like a serious person to other non-serious people, but to people who are serious and have some sense, he looks like an idiot and that's what he is. Basically, if you like Donald Trump you're an idiot. Sorry to have to say that. If you like Hillary Clinton, you're a psycho killer or you want to be one, subconsciously. If you like Ted Cruz, you probably should be locked up. If you like Jeb Bush, you have a serious memory problem.

So none of that is serious. Anybody who takes those people seriously are not serious people themselves. So to save all of the people who have some sanity about them in the world, we need something to come along and wreck the whole system. Nothing would do that better - with the exception of one thing - but nothing could do that better than the economy going off the edge of a cliff in whatever way. It's probably mostly rigged and manufactured. The whole idea of a global economy is controlled. It's not a natural self-sustaining organism. When you listen to people talk about the economy these days, it's almost as though it's self-aware in some description. "What are the markets thinking today?" "I don't know. Let me ask the market." Where do I find a market around here? Well there's one over there. He's down on that street corner. You can go ask that market what it's feeling. "Oh, okay. Let's go and ask the market." The market says it's been a bit nauseous today. Oh shit I just lost $10,000 in my shares because the market felt a bit nauseous. That's the way these assholes talk! "The markets" like it's some self-aware creature.

Niall: Yeah, sentient.

Joe: And it's sprung into life and now it can direct the course of the "economy". That's as bad as politics.

Elan: Exactly.

Joe: That just points to the manufactured nature of it the same way as politics points to the manufactured nature of the economic system. But at the same time I think there is a facility within the economic system where, because it's so manufactured, it's set up in such a way that certain small groups of people can plunder it all the time and it's always in their favour. But when those people dig too deep or reach too far for more and more wealth and control of resources, it can reach a point where it's not that it'll collapse in some way. There's nothing stopping the fundamentals of the economy from continuing to operate, which is people working...

Niall: Food still grows, people still work.

Joe: All that stuff. But there's a possibility that when these people reach too far and grasp for too much that they would expose the manufactured nature of it and in that exposure you would have some kind of an economic crises where they would say "Oh, let's wreck it all!" They would actually deliberately allow the false economy that it actually is, to be exposed as false to collapse in some way. And of course it's all based on sentiment, you know. It's everybody getting the jitters. It's like in a group of people, if you tell everybody something that really unnerves them and then someone else tells the other person that something bad is going to happen and they all get very anxious and start freaking out and stuff, some of them might take that a bit far and start wrecking the place or do irrational things based on that feeling, that sentiment in the markets. It's not that it would destroy the global economy but that it would cause the mechanism which allows the economy to actually operate, the real mechanisms, would be withdrawn.

One example would be banking. If banks stopped loaning to people, stopped loaning to corporations, then yeah, you would have a tangible collapse of this economy such as it is, even though it's a false economy. It's not just based on ordinary people working on produce and all those kinds of stuff, but the equity markets, derivatives, that could all collapse and in that situation the economy would collapse in the sense that the people who have been making money out of nothing, out of thin air, would no longer be able to do that because that false aspect of it would be taken away or would be pulled down. And then that would have knock-on real world events where banks would stop loaning or people would withdraw their...

Niall: Well the way it happened last time in 2008, the way it has knock-on real world effects in the real economy is that those people go "Oh god, I just lost absolutely everything. Oh hang on, I'm going to be fully remunerated by the sweat of the work of the people" and that's where all the taxes went. So they lost everything and they didn't lose any of it. So that's where the real economy implodes.

Joe: Yeah. So somebody deliberately effectively screws over an economy by taking more and more out of it or cutting off supply lines because they've lost and they decide that I should cut off the supply line of cash, of capital, of whatever, that I should cut that off to try and recoup my losses or something. And that has knock-on effects. It's a false economy but if you take it away and the mechanisms are pulled in or stopped, then if the actual economy is based on a falsehood but you take that falsehood away, then you do have a kind of real collapse, but it's only because it was based on a falsehood to begin with.

Shane: And it's being pushed too far. It's similar to the dynamic that you described earlier Joe with the refugee crisis. The elite are manufacturing this chaos, but it can go in the direction where it's uncontrolled chaos and they seem to be pushing these parallels with the economy too. They're driving down oil prices in order to try to hurt Russia and meanwhile they're collapsing segments of the economy in doing so. So they're shooting themselves in the foot.

Joe: Right. And countries may take these aggressive moves that the US in particular has been taking against Russia for example to try and maintain US economic hegemony around the world by trying to hurt Russia and other countries that fall out of favour. They could provoke those other countries like Russia to take actions that they need to take to protect themselves and that then can have tangible, real world effects on the flow of goods. If a country becomes very inward looking or insular in terms of its economic policy it could decide that if things get so bad, if you push us to the wall, we're going to take actions that stop the flow of goods; for example stop the flow of oil. There's many knock-on effects involved in this because everybody's trading with everybody else.

But imagine if the same thing happened with China, if China was forced to take some kind of a drastic action to protect its own economy if it stopped, for example, purchasing so much, stopped actually engaging in the global economy. Of course there's a lot of real world goods going around the planet mostly in boats.

Niall: The single biggest shipping lane in the world goes from China to the US.

Joe: Right.

Niall: Imagine that stick they have over the US. They could physically intervene there and that would be curtains for the United States.

Joe: There's a tipping point. Something big like that could happen that then would have so many knock-on effects into the false economy where everybody would get the jitters, everybody would try and protect themselves and everybody would pull in their horns, all their investment or activity in the economy. And if that happens at state levels, then yeah, you do have a contraction of the actual physical trade going around the world and ultimately it's always the poorest people who would suffer from that, ship supplies of wheat and grains and all sorts of other things landing in countries that feed a large percentage of the population. If that stops, then you have a serious crisis. Governments could fall. There's so many knock-on effects that that could have.

Niall: The reason we're discussing this today, which we do periodically, is because we're noticing the mainstream financial press, whether it's in the British Telegraph or the business pages of the New York Times, you name it, they're all talking the same talk. They're talking about a systemic crisis imminent. Now the question is are they bracing people? To the extent you're suggesting there's a hidden hand behind this intention in the sense of deliberately setting it up to fall by just withdrawing what normally takes place to keep things relatively managed and stable or is it more mundane than that? Is it more like the mass unconsciousness tapping into, people picking up on this?

Joe: That it's not sustainable anymore. People are picking up on global weather events and all that kind of stuff and seeing the environment, the actual biosphere being much more unstable.

Niall: Yeah, that could play in.

Joe: Yeah, that could play in too. That's ultimately going to have effects on crop production with the changing weather patterns, with floods and droughts all over the world. That's coming at some point where there's a massive shock to the supply of food in the world. And that again has a knock-on effect as well. As soon as something like that happens, the point here to remember is that as soon as something like that happens on a large scale, even in just one country, everybody else gets scared. This is where they talk about the market sentiment and jitters in the market and stuff. Other countries suddenly see a potential for them losing out in some way, so they all take the very imbalanced flow of the resources on this planet, if something gets stuck in that mechanism and stops that normal flow, then everybody starts to say "Me first. I'm number one baby so I'm going to protect myself". Everybody does that if there's a contagion that spreads where everybody says "I'm going to protect myself". Everybody pulls back from the game and you can have a serious problem with or a hiccup in the actual flow of goods around the world.

And then that has knock-on effects for economies where it spirals out of control. The whole thing is just so manufactured and set up in a certain way that anything that would happen - it could be environmental - to upset that balance, even though it's an imbalance would have a knock-on effect on the entire system. And that's what we're saying. Environment is one thing that could be a precipitation for that. Go ahead Elan.

Elan: It really is a perfect storm, the potential for the economy to collapse on top of the immigration crisis in Europe and all of these flashpoints in the Middle East, especially in Syria right now. Things look they may be about to get far worse with Turkey amassing its troops by the border and Russia saying "You cannot fly in Syrian air space" and just all of these things happening at the same time. So do we have any thoughts as to how it is that these huge, actually devastating things that all have reverberations one onto the other, all happening more or less simultaneously, making the effects of each far worse than they would have alone which independently of one another would be disastrous but together would be, as is written in the show description, just the perfect storm. How is it that all of these things are happening more or less simultaneously?

Joe: Well I think they'll feed off each other and it's like Niall was saying about mass consciousness, as the pathology and the cycle of ponerization of society around the world, normal human values are gone or increasingly eroded to the point where people are just living inane, non-creative, destructive, almost dumbed-down almost pointless lives where what human beings could be and could experience on this planet is just a pipe dream at this point compared to the way normal people live their lives. They don't interact with each other in any human way. They're not honest with each other. They don't express how they feel to each other. They don't share anything with each other. There's no sense of community in so many places around the world. And also the massive imbalance of where you have the west having plundered the world for hundreds of years and left vast swathes of the world and people impoverished and suffering.

There's just a massive imbalance in all of it and I think that has continued for quite a long time and has been taken to ridiculous and unreasonable extremes at this point, that all of these things coalesce as they push the world and its people and squeeze them and make their lives more and more difficult and increase the suffering on the planet, then the planet itself - what the mechanism is we don't know for sure, but there seems to be, like you're saying Elan, a coincidence of that kind of level of suffering at the human level and also the instability of the planet on an environmental or geologic level. And even as that is happening you see the excesses of the psychopaths who are ultimately responsible for this state of affairs keep going, getting worse and worse and worse. They act more and more crazy. They take more and more ridiculous actions. They act in more and more unreasonable and irrational ways. It's out of control. It's like a speeding train down the hill. It just gathers speed and it's going nowhere good.

I think those of us who are watching it, just need to continue to watch the show and realize that we're certainly from a psychological, emotional and even physical level, are not involved in that. We're not participating in it. We've been railing against it for a long time and we certainly do not want to be a part of it. We're not going where these people seem to want to go, the psychopaths in power and the blind followers who just have no sense and cannot see where it's going. They're following on in lockstep. And for the rest of us who see that, we just go "Well you know, go ahead then. There's too many of you who want to push things in this direction either passively or actively. Yeah, we're stuck on the same planet but certainly ideologically and emotionally I ain't going there and at every opportunity I'm going to point out that this is a really frickin' bad idea and I don't want to be a part of it." That's the most we can do I think.

Elan: And not see any of these developments in isolation, but all part of the same systemic issue, which is that this virus of pathological thinking is spreading.

Joe: Right. Alternatively, I would like just to be given a couple of days to go around the world and wring a load of necks. I don't know if that would help. And some well-placed kicks in the ass. I could draw up a short list and I would go and shine up my boots. If ass-kicking could...

Niall: Queen of Hearts. King of Spades.

Joe: If ass-kicking could sort it out, then I would volunteer. You just go around and kick some asses and wring some necks and shout at people. "You! Sit down! You over there, shut the hell up! You, Trump! Get back in your cage!"

Elan: Who would you start with though? There are so many!

Joe: Well I could draw up a relatively short list and I think it would help a lot. I'd carry a cannon with me, one of those cannons they use in circuses and I'd put people in it. I'd put Hillary in it and shoot her off - I don't know, off a continental shelf or something. I could come up with ideas, but I'd isolate these people, like a virus, like you were saying Elan; isolate them from the human population. But first of all they'd have to be put in their place and told "You! Shut up! You're not getting on TV anymore! You go and hide in your room! You're in the naughty corner! You're grounded. You shut the hell up and you too! Erdogan, don't even start!" "I'm serious Erdogan. I have had it up to here with you!" Then I'd say "I have to go back because I've got some gardening to do, but I'm going to leave Putin in charge. You listen to what he says, do what he says or I'll be back. Where's my cannon? And it'll be a bigger cannon that fires people into the sun next time. You're on warning!"
Failing that, I think we'll just have to leave the planet and the living system, whatever, to work its magic, to follow its course.

Niall: As George Carlin said, the planet is fine but the people, they're in trouble.

Joe: Yeah well we'll all learn something in the process. I think we're going to leave it there for this week folks, unless there's some other pressing matters we wanted to talk about. No? Any last words? Okay guys, thanks a million for coming on and talking to us. It's always great to throw around some ideas and share perspectives from a different angle. Elan and Shane and Bahar, thanks a million guys for coming on and we'll have to do it again at some point. And thanks to our listeners and our callers and our chatters. There are lots of people chatting on our new burgeoning, embryonic Sott Radio Network, in-house one that is going to be so cool. It's so much better. Next week it'll be back with even more new improvements and at some point we're going to go live and like we've been saying for the last couple of weeks, ditch these losers at BlogTalk Radio. Ditch 'em! And thanks to everybody for listening and calling and chatting, etc. We will be back next week as well as the other shows. So tune in next Friday/Saturday for the Health and Wellness Show and the Truth Perspective and we'll be back next Sunday on the same show Behind the Headlines. Until then, have a good one.

All: Good-byes.