Tuesday, May 22, 2018

No Fingerprints! Joel Zamel

We've now all heard of Cambridge Analytica, their parent SCL Group, and reported improper use of Facebook data. Cambridge Analytica made various marketing claims of wide effectiveness and impact on elections and world affairs, but were unprepared to be spotlighted.

Cambridge Analytica has now closed down / gone underground.

Parallel operations being investigated surround Joel Zamel.



https://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/.premium-who-is-joel-zamel-australian-israeli-linked-to-mueller-s-trump-probe-1.6104963

Three interesting articles have looked at Mr. Zamel's work with Psy-Group, Wikistrat and WhiteKnight. The above analytic Haaretz article is best (seems behind a firewall already, but perhaps cached here)

Earlier, the New York Times painted a portrait of mystery:
https://www.nytimes.com/2018/05/19/us/politics/trump-jr-saudi-uae-nader-prince-zamel.html

The Wall Street Journal worried about a "secretive private intelligence firm" deeply linked to Israel promising to "shape reality." Foreign interference in the American domestic political process, even by friendly Israel, raises huge questions & concerns.
https://www.wsj.com/articles/mueller-probe-expands-to-israeli-entrepreneur-with-u-a-e-ties-1526763816

The WSJ downloaded Psygroup.com marketing materials and host a helpful link:
http://www.wsj.com/public/resources/documents/psygroup.pdf?mod=article_inline
(direct web presence has now disappeared at psygroup.com)

Maybe Mr. Joel Zamel is being treated unreasonably. Zamel is professionally represented by attorney Marc L. Mukasey, chairman of white collar defense at the law firm Greenberg Traurig. Yet even the lawyer is under the spotlight for family ties and being a close buddy to Rudy Giuliani (link).

This leads to my headline above. I was wholly ready to move-on from shadowy Joel Zamel to the most recent Red Sox box score. But let's have a look at the guy...

A search on 21st May 2018 turned up no certain images of Joel Zamel.

I searched for ג'ואל זמל  (Joel Zamel in Hebrew) and got article links but no photos.

Psy promises to "sway opinion and emphasize (or de-emphasize) issues of relevance to our clients." CEO Joel Zamel has a very low profile. UNNATURAL

from http://www.wsj.com/public/resources/documents/psygroup.pdf
Cleanup can be too perfect. Should we see professionalism in the fact we cannot find traces of Joel Zamel?

No fingerprints at all --- signals careful work & cleanup.


---------------------------
P.S. - Joel Zamel photo, released late 22 May via sbs.com.au, notes:
"Publicity-shy" Zamel "cultivated an air of discretion" & "low profile"...

Joel Zamel     photo released on sbs.com.au





Monday, May 21, 2018

Fire Dance, Namaste

Our world seems increasingly nonsensical... or counter-intuitive. Bipartisan bailout of big finance and industries with public funds was corrupt, but we're already warped from capture of the U.S. economy by militarism. Democracy offers endless war and force-fed corporate media. "Just Say No" ain't working. Outside now I see morning sun, and hear birdsong.

😄











PS: the strongest stimulant I've had in the last 24 hours was lassi (yoghurt drink)... but I did help squelch the flames of a guy on fire (he should be OK)

Saturday, May 19, 2018

Payoffs, Bribery, Hush Money are COSTLY

Lawyer-to-the-Stars, Michael Cohen, reportedly paid a lady the amount of $130,000 to say nothing about his client's unadmitted sexual encounter.

Client Donald Trump reportedly was oblivious to the transaction. Lawyer paid with his personal funds, and secured a signed contract promising future silence.

Trump denies ever schtupping Ms. Stormy Daniels.
Trump denies managing the hush-money payoff.
Trump has now belatedly admitted compensating Cohen for the payoff.

UNBELIEVABLE     ...     sleazy

Welcome to the United States of America






Wednesday, May 09, 2018

Haiku until lame
















 
Haiku until lame
Occupied Territories
White House, Pentagon.



So Cute!

Our leaders spewed $5 trillion on Iraq: US$5,000,000,000,000. to poor result ... taken from schools, seniors, communities, and our next generation -- corroding America's health. 

Iran's cleavage promises to cost more. 


Tuesday, May 08, 2018

Skip the Gold Star

It's a Beautiful Day

 - except we hear martial music & drums to WAR

Why's America messing with that part of the world?

Work w/ other major powers... or we're rogue 


JUST SAY NO!

Friday, April 27, 2018

Peace Today at Panmunjom...




Border from inside hut (gravel S.Korea; sand DPRK North Korea)


Panmunjom Peace Summit

Historic meeting in Panmunjom, Korea!

After many decades of Japanese colonialism, and 'protective' military occupation of South Korea by the USA since 1945, perhaps the Korean people can begin to make their own, more peaceful future.


Thursday, April 26, 2018

Constructing Peace - A Great Challenge

Protest over pudding, as Japan shoves divided Korea's leaders closer together.

Former colonial ruler Japan is not invited to tomorrow's intra-Korean summit in the Demilitarized Zone, but photos of dessert depicting Korean islets contested by Japan now sour relations with Tokyo (link).

Dokdo / Takeshima are just 0.2km² - twice the size of Yankee Stadium, but disproportionately controversial.  PEACE is more important!




Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Grubbing for Wealth?

                                                                                                                                                 photo:  In-seok

Sunday, April 22, 2018

Kissing Earth: Execution pit prep

The US Department of Homeland Security seeks to compile databases and possible blacklists of "media influencers" - Bad News!
(link: Forbes)   (link: The Japan Times)   (link: PEN)

DHS press secretary Tyler Houlton (link) asserts that categorizing and assessing media people is "nothing more than the standard practice of monitoring current events... Any suggestion otherwise is for tin foil hat wearing, black helicopter conspiracy theorists"...

But in fact analyzing (and penalizing) media "sentiment" is a process familiar to the Gestapo. 

According to the Statement of Work, the private-sector contractor must have "Ability to analyze the media coverage in terms of content, volume, sentiment, ... reach, ... influencers, ... momentum, circulation." No detailed rubric is publicly provided by Government to how "sentiment" is determined.

Former government officials in South Korea have been convicted and are now in prison for compiling and operating similar "blacklists" of their enemies (link). That Jan. 2018 court ruling was clear: "... once the government discriminates against those who think differently, it leads to totalitarianism."

The Korean government had 9473 people on their known "blacklist" (문화예술계 블랙리스트 - link) and also a "whitelist" ("화이트리스트") of favored media actively funded & supported. Creepy!

Classifying media sentiment & Enemies List creation is far more dangerous than "monitoring current events"






Friday, April 20, 2018

Lance Armstrong Swindle "settled"?

Payoffs keep Lance wealthy & out of jail.
Bad News for anti-corruption:
https://www.nytimes.com/2018/04/19/sports/cycling/lance-armstrong-postal-service.html

Americans are overly cocooned from the World
For sheltering an admitted criminal and never even trying to send this rich swindler to jail, our society enables further crimes. America's youth sees cheating rewarded. People outside the nation see: sports, money, cheating, doping, USA USA

Lance Armstrong's a permanent SHIT stain on the American flag. 

Cheating and Doping = East Germany and Old Glory USA

This swindler disgraces every American.

Armstrong - shit stain on our flag. Expel the Bum.

Sports, Money, Cheating, Doping, USA USA

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Postcard Tax

Taxation Reform: Most Americans now file a postcard or less, and pay almost no tax...

Such lucky people in the best country ever.


Grinning politicos = Shameless LYING scum

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

What to Do with Trump?






















Madeleine Albright's Sunday article "Will We Stop Trump Before It’s Too Late?" (link) wields highly-provocative first paragraph imagery: Mussolini was executed together with mistress Clara Petacci, and Hitler "suicided" w/ Eva Braun, Who'd depart with Trump?

Seriously, Fascism doesn't start & stop w/ Trump.

We easily & harshly criticize German silence under Hitler, but Americans disregard our own burials: Genocide of indigenous peoples; undocumented & unpunished torture; American exceptionalism; manifest destiny; theft of native land; corporatist corruption; forced servitude of kidnapped Africans (without transgressor punishment or victim compensation); militarism & perpetual war...

Very few Americans know or care about (link):
Vergangenheitsbewältigung

US War Crimes continue


Silence is complicity.


Wednesday, April 04, 2018

Remembering Casey Sheehan, d. 2004 April 4

Militarism is a never-ending plague.

The USA posts armies around the world, in a huge waste of lives & resources. So Sad!

Bring Our Troops Home!

Washington DC's elite have sacrificed far too many people and production on weapons and death. Both Republican & Democrat, most top politicos are militaristic... perhaps from sucking at the teat of defense contractors & their donations? Our huge military itself has a lot of votes!

There's substantial US militarist support for bringing troops home and out of harm's way. We've no business in many overseas dusty outposts! 


Here's a good anti-militarist article (link):


Tuesday, April 03, 2018

Paradise Jeju

Springtime hope! 

... or Realpolitik: Prepare to survive the Worst.

Korea's Jeju island, 3 April 1948, was horrible. Massacres proceeded for many years. Silence lasted decades. Other peoples suffer similarly today.

Wednesday, March 28, 2018

Cherry Blossom Theater


Criminals reshape Japan...
Most Japanese citizens keep silent.
Cherry blossom theater.

Assorted crimes were committed
By government officials
Under Abe's administration

Crooked bureaucrat Sagawa
Claims the Prime Minister
Didn't lead the criminal cover-up

Falsifying public documents
Aiding and abetting fraud
Perjury

What fueled the fraud?
What pay-off to public servants?
Bribery? Future job improvement?

Unnatural & beyond belief
Motiveless crimes?
Or "tip of the iceberg" corruption?

Consider the original crimes:
Theft. Deception. Subsidized favoritism. etc.
The PM & wife were involved. How much?

Ultra-right militarist education
安倍晋三小学校
Abe's Moritomo support

Akie Abe & husband abandoned Kagoike
Kagoike couple still jailed without trial
Forced silence.

Disgusting.

Welcome to the Cherry Blossom Theater

Monday, March 26, 2018

Is Japan Deteriorating?

Japan needs professional government,
not butt-kissing bureaucrats working hard to seduce a few key political patrons.  So Corrupting!

Abe's Cabinet Bureau of Personnel Affairs 内閣人事局 --
Launched mid-2014, now clearly a failed experiment...

Sunday, March 25, 2018

In Yo Face!

On Tuesday 20 March 2018, Facebook Inc. (FB:NASDAQ GS) addressed their data sharing scandal with a folksy-arrogant press statement beginning: "Mark, Sheryl and their teams are working around the clock to get all the facts..."

Youngish Mark, your familiarity hurts - we've not been introduced, I don't know Sheryl, or much about your mega-corporation. But slowly We Lab Rats awaken.

Folksy Facebook?
Founder, Chairman & CEO Mark Zuckerberg & Sheryl Sandberg (Chief Operating Officer and Zuckerberg's second-in-command) run $500 billion mega-corporation Facebook Inc. (highly-prominent among 1200 NASDAQ Global Select Market Companies). In January, Facebook reported 2.2 billion monthly active users.

Cambridge Analytica, Steve Bannon and affiliates (via SCL Elections and others) reportedly used Facebook data to influence democratic polling around the world. Facebook friend networks were secretly harvested for intimate data, then boosted by supplemental info to profile huge numbers of us for political propaganda as well as ads. Now we're approached with great familiarity and microtargeting.

People responsible reportedly include Alexander Nix, Alexander Tayler, Aleksandr Kogan, Christopher Wylie, etc. The story became more unsavory with claims of sabotage, sexual entrapment, bribes and compromising videos. Until the scandal exploded, Jared Kushner claimed (link, and more here) his clever use of Facebook data for digital targeting led to the success of the Trump campaign.

Facebook shares dropped from $176.80 to $159.30 last week (Monday to Friday 19-23rd March). BBC Business (link) calculate the drop knocked corporate value $58 billion lower.

Tuesday's press statement (20 March) was disarmingly friendly:
"Mark, Sheryl and their teams are working around the clock to get all the facts and take the appropriate action moving forward, because they understand the seriousness of this issue. The entire company is outraged we were deceived. We are committed to vigorously enforcing our policies to protect people’s information and will take whatever steps are required to see that this happens."  [end]


Charming!


Shaped world? 

Please Be Alerted & Get Disturbed by last week's chilling declaration we're each individually actively led.

External interests with limitless funds shape your awareness, apprehension and actions. Sophisticated exploits prod us to see our situation through corporate lenses.

(Differs from being monitored or spied upon).
Lovely


Saturday, March 24, 2018

All Things Must Pass...

Beloved shop closes down...
Tempura "Imoya" Jinbocho 2-chome (Tokyo) shuts this week (link)

I've eaten there (and at sister shop around the corner) perhaps 40 times from early 1980s. Open in 1959, there's often a line of people waiting to be seated. Everyone is watching the tempura frying, then eat immediately over hot rice with 天汁 (tempura dip) - Special, Yummy!

Sad.
人情経営



Friday, March 23, 2018

Facing Misinformation

Today's Chosun Ilbo (English edition from South Korea) has an article titled "Pyongyang Resumes Anti-U.S. Propaganda" (link)

The article itself is not illustrated. But the way I found the article was via an illustrated link on their front page, which had the following picture:









What kind of photo is this? ...as if picturing a DPRK announcer?
Such bullshit!  Who's shoveling propaganda here?  
Right-wing elements in South Korea's Chosun Ilbo.



Thursday, March 22, 2018

Peaceful Heisei

Japan's present "Heisei Era" (平成時代) will not last past April next year. This era of "peace everywhere" is due to end 30 April 2019, at Heisei 31. The yet-unnamed next era will begin 1st May 2019 (or before) -- we can only hope it will be peaceful & offer new opportunities.

Since the end of WWII in 1945, Japan has enjoyed many benefits from relatively low defense spending and de-emphasized militarism. Change is coming.

The present government of Prime Minister Shinzō Abe is eager to alter Japan's international profile, and promises to develop the military. The public until now has been largely apathetic, and high-profile activism is rare. Some 75 years after the end of WWII, Japanese militarism may soon make a combative comeback.

Will Japan be better if tougher and more belligerent?

The view from Sweden is not encouraging. We see Japan as unlikely to militarily outperform major potential opponents: China, Russia, the USA.

Japan's other political and commercial alliances, such as with ASEAN or the EU, are unlikely to markedly improve if Japan becomes heavily armed. Considering also assorted reactions by Korea (North & South), we wonder who in fact would surely benefit from remilitarized Japan? The beneficiary list is short: arms dealers; perhaps distant strategists in Washington DC or Israel; corrupt Japanese politicos bribed in advance; etc.?

Emphasizing neutrality, or science & technology, Japan might better emulate Switzerland or Sweden. Creatively developing a distinct transnational leadership platform for Japan is greatly superior to simply becoming one more militarist nation. Will we look back in longing to the relative well-being of these past decades, as Japan slips into martial reorganization and aggressive ultra-nationalism? I hope not... but the Japanese people are deciding, with the luxurious choice of apathy a dwindling option.

(1939) What future five years hence: Year of Rabbit, 2023

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Akie Abe, BANZAI !

Patriotism Japonais = Loss of Peace?
No worries! 


Akie Abe works for Japan
安倍昭恵とアベアーミー






Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Abe's Pride

Prime Minister Abe's Pride Hurts Japan

Important business continues, but without top representation by Japan: the G-20, North Korea Peace Talks, negotiations with Russia, the new TPP, challenging protectionism by Trump in the USA, etc.

Abe & Aso should resign immediately, as responsible for government corruption.

安倍晋三 さようなら ...
麻生太郎 さようなら ...


Monday, March 19, 2018

Banzai?

Banzai Remilitarized Japan?

PM Abe's right-wing government (and shadowy Nippon Kaigi) aim to quash Japan's "Peace" Constitution Article 9 and revive the military.

安倍総理... 万歳?

Considering the ghosts of past patriots with the millions of casualties throughout Asia, Japan & the Pacific, enforced PEACE is the better choice over belligerent rearmament and ultranationalism.


Thursday, March 15, 2018

Japan's Joy - Abolish Abe


Japan's Prime Minister Abe has done great damage to Japan, destroying trust in government. Abe & advisors such as Finance Minister Tarō Asō (麻生 太郎) claim they didn't personally direct the favoritism or attempted cover-up. But we now know gross bureaucratic criminality occurred during their tenure, surely reflecting bad, unsuitable leadership.

The PM's wife, Akie Abe was clearly involved with expanding & promoting ultrarightist outreach.

But seeking to instill militarism in young kids makes Japan's PM Abe - Tsukamoto - Moritomo dangerous to the nation, to Japan's neighbors, to All the World.

Abe in prison
Delays re-arming Japan
Fresh weapon is Peace