Friday, September 21, 2007

It's the End of the World As We Know It... and the Stock Market's Fine

On August 27th the nuts over at Prison Planet warned that the stock market was going to crash because of a bunch of "billion dollar bin Laden puts" which would expire on September 21st, which is, no coincidence, today.

Hmm, so on August 27th, the S & P 500 was at 1466.79, and today it has crashed all the way down to... 1525.75, a gain of over 4%.

One could say that some rich investor lost a whole lot of money on these expired options, except as I already pointed out, this was a box-spread trade, which is not really a bet on the market but a way of borrowing money which is way too complicated for anyone who writes for Prison Planet to understand. So the odds are nobody lost any money. Tune into Alex Jones' radio show though, and I am sure you will hear differently.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Speak of the Devil

Just hours after I made a post quoting a Russian on the nature of anti-Semitism, I received this article on the Veterans for 9/11 Truth mailing list. Written by KKK leader David Duke no less. I swear, I couldn't make this stuff up if I tried.

A month ago 500 Russian leaders signed a letter opposing Jewish supremacism, now 5000 leaders of Russian society have joined in.

Israel has repeatedly demanded that the Russian government ban a number of
organizations that seek to defend Russian interests from the (organized crime) Zionist Jewish Oligarchs who have stolen approximately 65 percent of the natural wealth of Russia. These courageous Russians simply dare to point out the irrefutable fact that many of these criminals are loyal to Israel rather than to Russia and to the Jewish people rather than to the Russian people.

Monday, September 17, 2007

Life And Fate and Anti-Semitism

Having written extensively for my other blog Screw Loose Change, I have done a lot of research on people (conspiracy theorists specifically) who would generally be considered as anti-Semites. We get a lot of people responding that we shouldn't be attacking people for that, or that we are just launching ad hominem attacks, and that Jews should not receive some type of special status because of their religion.

While I agree that, for the most part, it is not intrinsically morally superior to be, say, anti-Muslim than anti-Jewish, I also believe that there is something unique about anti-Semitism. We do not live in a bubble, there is a very specific historical context to anti-Semitism, that is not present in, for example, making fun of Hindus working in convenience stores.

I am in the middle of reading the novel Life and Fate (Zhizn' i sud'ba) by Vasily Grossman, and when I say in the middle, at nearly 900 pages, I really am. Life and Fate, which was written in the 1960s, but only recently published is about the war on the Eastern Front in general, and the battle for Stalingrad in particular. But it is also about the Holocaust and the fate of the Jewish people. Grossman, who was one of the first journalists to report about the Nazi concentration camps, knows about what he talks. In this section, from page 484, he describes the nature of anti-Semitism far better than I ever could.

Anti-Semitism can take many forms - from a mocking, contemptuous ill-will to murderous pogroms.

Anti-Semitism can be met with in the market and in the Presidium of the Academy of Sciences, in the soul of an old man and in the games children play in the yard.
Anti-Semitism has been as strong in the age of atomic reactors and computers as in the age of oil-lamps, sailing boats and spinning-wheels.

Anti-Semitism is always a means rather than and end; it is a measure of the contradictions yet to be resolved. It is a mirror for the failings of individuals, social structures, and State systems. Tell me what you accuse the Jews of - I'll tell you what you're guilty of.

Even Oleinichuk, the peasant fighter for freedom who was imprisoned in Schlusselburg, somehow expressed his hatred for serfdom as a hatred for Poles and Yids. Even a genius like Dostoyevsky saw a Jewish userer where he should have seen the pitiless eyes of a Russian serf-owner, industrialist or contractor. And in accusing the Jews of racism, a desire for world domination and a cosmopolitan indifference towards the German fatherland, National Socialism was merely describing its own features.

Anti-Semitism is also an expression of a lack of talent, an inability to win a contest on equal terms - in science or in commerce, in craftsmanship or painting. States look to the imaginary intrigue of world Jewry for explanations of their own failure.

At the same time anti-Semitism is an expression of the lack of consciousness of the masses, of their inability to understand the true reasons for their sufferings. Ignorant people blame the Jews for their troubles when they should blame the social structure or the State itself. Anti-Semitism is also, of course, a measure of the religious prejudices smouldering in the lower levels of society.