Who Won The Election? Russia

Russia.jpeg

So it turns out that the all important election of 2017 for the 45th President of the United States…


Was not between President Trump and Hillary Clinton at all.


Oh no.


Because who really won the election is Russia!


From the dossier to the uranium deal, charges of collision and stealing the election, the investigations, special counsel, weakened White House, chaos, confusion, misinformation, fake news, and alternative facts.


This is called INFORMATION WARFARE. 


All of these serve not only to weaken our elections and political system, and unnerve the trust of the American people, it wastes the time and efforts of our elected officials and media chasing ghosts. 


When you can’t win an election fair and square, you pull out the McCarthyism card invoking fear of Russia and provoking political repression here at home. 


It’s the “Commie bastards,” of course that are interfering in our democracy.


But really it wasn’t!  


Unless you count a hundred thousand dollars or so of political ads and botnets in a billion dollar plus election as serious meddling–not

Basically, we are talking a self-inflicted national wound–that keeps bleeding and bleeding. 


Our country is going on a wild goose chase–looking for something, turning over stones, but what they find–how significant is any of it?


The real winner again is Russia.


They are strengthening themselves in the world. 


They have the West on edge.


Our politicians and system of government is weakened.


We waste time, while Russia takes over Crimea, wins big in Syria, militarizes the Arctic, partners with China, and advances their world agenda. 


We are distracted with eyes off the ball–spending days, weeks, months, and years in a tizzy pointing fingers at each other, seeing shadows, scared of ghosts, and punching into the air. 


Russia won the election for sure. 😉


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Warnings: When It’s Not Just “Crying Wolf”

Warnings

There is a famous saying that “Those who cannot learn from history are doomed to repeat it.” – George Santayana

An editorial appeared in the Wall Street Journal (10 April 2012) by French philosopher Pascal Bruckner called The Ideology of Catastrophe” that accuses those who warn others of danger as having “tiny minds who wish us suffering.”

This “philosopher” maligns both Jewish prophets and Christian “millenarian movements” for having “no function other than indignation…and [the Prophet] becomes intoxicated with his own words and claims a legitimacy with no basis.”

Mr. Bruckner must be completely clueless of those throughout history that have sought to warn us of dangers that if the world would but have listened, untold numbers of millions could have been saved.

From the earliest of times, there have been warnings about pending catastrophes and those that paid attention were able to make a difference.

In the Torah (Bible), G-d warned Noah of the impending flood, and Noah was able to save humankind and animals–2 by 2 they went unto the ark for 40 days and nights of pouring rain that vanquished the earth.

In the Prophets, G-d has Yonah (after being swallowed by the whale) warn the the inhabitants of Nineveh to repent and prevents them and their city from destruction.

In the 20th century, if only the world had paid attention to the genocidal desires of maniacs like Adolph Hitler (may his name be cursed) in books like Mein Kampf, how many tens of millions may have been spared.

In terms of the advent of nukes and other weapons of mass destructions, to at least some extent people and governments have listened to warning and retreated from a philosophy of mutually assured destruction (MAD) to instead move toward anti-proliferation, arms reduction treaties, and other safeguards, and we have thank G-d been able to avoid major catastrophes from these dangers.

Thankfully, with dire medical issuances about various diseases, pandemics, and even warning about the dangers of obesity, smoking, and drinking, we have been able to curb harmful behaviors, promote healthier living, and lengthen life spans.

Similarly, with environmental warnings, we have been able to create awareness and educate people on more sustainable living–through conservation, recycling, reuse, as well as renewable energy sources, and more.

Moreover, warnings about runaway spending and the national deficit have been heard for decades, but having ignored these for the most part, we now face a $16,000,000,000,000 bill and growing rapidly–soon coming due to future generations of Americans.  And we are already witnessing the effects–inflation, unemployment, default, and perhaps succession from the Euro and the EU itself–of countries on the other side of the Atlantic that have made the similar errors in their wild spending ways.

While some corporate, religious, and political leaders do use fear tactics to gain power or whatever they are personally-seeking that does not make every warning false and malevolent.

Certainly, at the other end of the spectrum, some people would rather live in denial of any issues and pretend that everything is just hunky-dory all the time.

Bruckner does makes some superficial and one-sided arguments–denouncing warnings and claiming that:

– Warnings cause fear, which becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy.

– Warnings “though they try to awaken us…eventually deadens us.”

– People who warn “do not [really] intend to warn us as much as to condem us.”

– Leaders issue warnings “to dazzle us in order to make us docile.”

Unfortunately, Bruckner has failed to distinguish between fear-mongering and fact.

Bruckner missed the point of how real warnings can help people–which is through changing hearts, minds, and behaviors.

1) Fear is not a self-fulfilling prophecy unless people do not act in time to change dangerous and irresponsible behaviors.

2) Genuine warnings do not deaden those who seek truth and a way forward–it only deadens those who are unwilling or unable to adapt.

3) People who warn based on facts and with sincerity to help others do not wish to condem us–rather they wish to alleviate unnecessary suffering.

4) Leaders who issue warnings to alert people to very real dangers out there in order to seek safety or change course are not trying to dazzle and make docile, but rather they seek to save lives by creating awareness, educating, and empowering people to change before it is too late.

Some people understand well from history as well as from common sense that our behaviors have consequences–other do not.

For me, when we stray into dangerous waters, I am glad for the true heros out there looking out for us and helping guide us live better and longer lives.

While it is good to be critical of unfounded warnings and charlatans, it is necessary to have warnings that are grounded in fact, given sincerely, not forced on others, and help people stay successfully on the road to health, prosperity, and human rights.

(Source Photo: here with attribution to Alex Peruso)

Cloud Second, Security First

Shadyrat_map

Leadership is not about moving forward despite any and all costs, but about addressing issues head on.

Cloud computing holds tremendous promise for efficiency and cost-savings at a time when these issues are front and center of a national debate on our deficit of $14 trillion and growing.

Yet some prominent IT leaders have sought to downplay security concerns calling them “amplified…to preserve the status quo.” (ComputerWorld, 8 August 2011)
Interestingly, this statement appeared in the press the same week that McAfee reported Operation Shady RAT–“the hacking of more than 70 corporations and government organizations,” 49 of which were in the U.S., and included a dozen defense firms. (Washington Post, 2 August 2011)
The cyber spying took place over a period of 5 years and “led to a massive loss of information.”(Fox News, 4 August 2011)
Moreover, this cyber security tragedy stands not alone, but atop a long list that recently includes prominent organizations in the IT community, such as Google that last year had it’s networks broken into and valuable source code stolen, and EMC’s RSA division this year that had their SecurID computer tokens compromised.
Perhaps, we should pay greater heed to our leading cyber security expert who just this last March stated: “our adversaries in cyberspace are highly capable. Our defenses–across dot-mil and the defense industrial base (DIB) are not.” (NSA Director and head of Cyber Command General Keith Alexander).
We need to press forward with cloud computing, but be ever careful about protecting our critical infrastructure along the way.
One of the great things about our nation is our ability to share viewpoints, discuss and debate them, and use all information to improve decision-making along the way. We should never close our eyes to the the threats on the ground.
(Source Photo: here)