The Octant
Insights and reporting from Caleb Maupin

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The words they use to describe her are nasty, cliché, but all too familiar. They call her “Princess,” “Oligarch,” and accuse her of “embezzlement” “peddling influence” etc. The truth is that Isabel Dos Santos, the richest woman in Africa, has for decades been on the hit list of the most powerful people in the world.  In the first month of 2020, the international media has doubled down, taken aim, and decided to go for the kill.

And who are the hitmen? The same folks who brought you the Panama Papers, the shady International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ). The outlet with ties to the Democracy Fund of the United Nations, the US Agency for International Development (USAID) and George Soros’ Open Society Foundation is repeating their same old mantra. They accuse independent leaders around the world, from Russia, China, Latin America, and Africa of being “corrupt.” They display in rather convenient “leaks,” as if it is somehow shocking, that the leaders of countries with massive populations and resources in-fact possess lots of wealth. The international audience is led to the conclusion that the targeted leader should be removed.

COINTELPRO

After the Democratic Primary Debate on February 7th, 2020, MSNBC host, Chris Matthews, did what he normally does, which is  give his opinion. However, instead of being clear or coherent and basing his opinion on facts, he let loose a very paranoid sounding, and somewhat confused diatribe against US Senator Bernie Sanders, the Presidential candidate currently leading in the polls.

He said: “I have my own views of the word ‘socialist’ and I’d be glad to share them with you in private. They go back to the early 1950s. I have an attitude about them. I remember the Cold War, I have an attitude towards Castro. I believe if Castro and the Reds had won the Cold War there would have been executions in Central Park and I might have been one of the ones getting executed. And certain other people would be there cheering, okay? So, I have a problem with people who take the other side. I don’t know who Bernie supports over these years. I don’t know what he means by socialist.” 

This is not the only odd primetime TV moment related to Bernie Sanders and his presidential campaign. Appearing on Tucker Carlson’s program in January of 2019, former Assistant FBI Director, Terry Tuchie, proclaimed:

“The electorate in some places is putting more and progressives and self-described socialists in positions and, ironically, years ago – when I first got into the FBI – one of the missions of the FBI in its counterintelligence efforts was to try to keep these people out of office.”

Why did they call it “COINTELPRO”?

Many Americans would roll their eyes if they were told that the FBI had interfered in elections and systemically worked to destroy the lives of activists, resulting in multiple deaths. The term “conspiracy theory” would be thrown out and people would exclaim: “Everyone knows America has freedom!” “This country isn’t a dictatorship! That could never happen here!”

MormonStatue

At the conclusion of the impeachment trial, the vote was taken, and all Republicans voted in unison to keep Trump in office. There was however, one notable exception. US Senator Mitt Romney was the single Republican to vote to convict Trump on charges of abuse of power.

The media has chalked this up to merely a personal tension between the two men. The reality is, however, that in his longstanding tension with Trump, Mitt Romney represents more than himself. Romney, as a US Senator from Utah, represents the Mormon Axis. This is a center of power within the US government apparatus that leans conservative but very much has its own agenda, competing with other forces within the Republican Party, as well as within the FBI and CIA.


A Modern Day Mystery Cult

In Ancient Rome, the official state religion included worship of mythological deities, such as Jupiter, Mars, and Saturn. After the fall of the Roman Republic, the state religion also incorporated the belief in the divinity of the Emperor as God in human form assigned to rule over all the world.

However, throughout the history of the Roman Empire, ‘“mystery cults’” continued to emerge, and at various times became deeply influential. These religious sects did not deny the existence of Rome’s official Gods, but had a specific deity that they held above others. Adherents of the Mystery Cults had a very specific set of beliefs, lived according to a specific set of rules, and centered their lives around a particular deity. The cult of Isis, for example, worshipped a goddess from the Egyptian tradition. The cult of Mithras was a Roman re-interpretation of the ancient Persian prophet Zarathustra.

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“I am thrilled to report to you tonight that our economy is the best it has ever been. Our military is completely rebuilt, with its power being unmatched anywhere in the world — and it is not even close,” Donald Trump told the country at his State of the Union address on February 4th, 2020.

Such words are laughable to anyone familiar with basic economic data. The 1950s, was a far better time, when the wages of American industrial workers significantly increased, and the US was the trading center of the non-Communist world amidst the post-war economic expansion, was a far better time.  Currently, living standards in the US are not rising. The slight increase in wages does not cancel out the rise of debt, the crumbling infrastructure, the low wage economy, and many obvious woes. These woes propelled Bernie Sanders, with his message of “Democratic Socialism”, to nearly steal the spotlight at the Iowa Caucuses.

However, Trump’s emphasis on military spending, as well as his stoking of fears about immigrant crime, points to the underlying reality of America’s economic management since 1945. In essence, what can be called “Death Economy,” a particular application of Keynesianism have been relentlessly applied, and their ability to boost growth is running out.

How Should The Government Spend Money? Keynes vs. Schacht

Prior to the financial meltdown that swept the western world in 1929, it was common for observers and commentators to declare “Ford has overtaken Marx.” The application of assembly-line production to efficiently churn out goods as specifically applied by Henry Ford, was said to have disproved Marx’s theory that capitalism is prone to cyclical crises of overproduction. The thesis of “Ford has overtaken Marx” was an earlier incarnation of what is now called “The Efficient Market Hypothesis” by economists.

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On Jan. 3rd, 2019, China landed the Chang-e 4 rover on the far side of the moon. This was a dramatic accomplishment in terms of extraterrestrial activity. The mission had a concrete purpose, not merely in terms of scientific research, but also in terms of technology.Helium-3, the rare, non-radioactive isotope, is quite hard to find on earth. Due to its rarity, it costs roughly $40,000 per ounce. However, Helium-3 is highly abundant on the far side of the Moon. The Chang’e 4 is believed to be the first step, with China intending to send up Chang’e 5, which will land on the moon, load up, and return to earth with a cache of Helium-3, extracted from the lunar surface.

Helium-3 is in high demand right now, as fusion energy research is taking off. Many believe that Helium-3 could be used in a fusion reactor that could be developed, and completely change life on this planet with abundant levels of new energy. Russian President, Vladimir Putin is a champion of these efforts, saying: “Potentially we can harness a colossal, inexhaustible and safe source of energy. However, we will only succeed in fusion energy and in solving other fundamental tasks if we establish broad international cooperation and interaction between government and business and join the efforts of researchers representing different scientific schools and areas. If technological development becomes truly global, it will not be split up or reined in by attempts to monopolize progress, limit access to education and put up new obstacles to the free exchange of knowledge and ideas…The International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor (ITER) serves as a prime example of open scientific, technological cooperation. Scientists are now planning to use it to launch the process of controlled thermonuclear fusion…Our country is actively participating in this project, and is now prepared to suggest that they use Russia’s scientific infrastructure for joint research, joint scientific investigation, for the international scientific teams that are working in the sphere of nature-like and other breakthrough technologies, including unique mega-science installations.”

The US space program originated with similar aspirations. NASA sought to advance human civilization, develop new energy sources, and make life better on earth by reaching for the stars. On Sept. 20th, 1963, US President, John F. Kennedy spoke at the United Nations and proposed that instead of having a “Space Race” that the United States and the Soviet Union work together. He said: “In a field where the United States and the Soviet Union have a special capacity–in the field of space–there is room for new cooperation, for further joint efforts in the regulation and exploration of space. I include among these possibilities a joint expedition to the moon.”

2020: Pornography Takes the Place of Politics

When describing the years of 1907-1910, a period when Russia was gripped by hopelessness after the failure of the 1905 revolution, Vladimir Lenin wrote: “Depression, demoralization, splits, discord, defection, and pornography took the place of politics.”

Such words accurately describe the current atmosphere within the United States. Suicide rates are higher than they have been in decades. Opioid addiction is also claiming lives at a very high rate. Roads across the country are being un-paved because municipalities cannot afford to maintain them. Water is not being properly purified. Demoralization and depression are abundant, and discord among the country’s different demographics and regions is also widespread.

MichelleRemembers

A video of Paula White, the pastor, and televangelist, became a hit sensation on social media among those who dislike US President Donald Trump. The selected clip from her Jan. 5th, 2020 Sermon portrayed the spiritual guru, who is loosely connected with the commander-in-chief, uttering the words: “We declare that anything that’s been conceived in satanic wombs, that it will miscarry, it will not be able to carry forth any plan of destruction, any plan of harm,” and asking Jesus Christ to “command all satanic pregnancies to miscarry right now.” White has come forward and said she was speaking metaphorically, and that her words seem less bizarre when put into the context of the full sermon.

 

At the same time, a true-crime miniseries entitled “Fall River”, which documents the hysteria that swept a small Massachusetts town in 1979 after some gruesome killings, is currently in production.

 

All of this seems to point to that the fact that the United States is now attempting to interpret a strand of fear-based religious and political thinking that sprung up in the United States during the late Cold War. What is widely described as the “Satanic Panic” was a major current in US society from the 1970s up into the early 2000s, reaching its height of cultural influence during the 1980s. It accompanied the broader rise of the evangelical Christian right-wing, which was aligned with the Neoconservative faction in the Republican Party.