On December 7, 2017 Ray moderated an event at the NPC in which Gilbert Doctorow addressed the wider, Russia-related issues in his new book, Does America Have a Future?  Gil is an American historian of Russia, whose academic and business credentials simply won’t quit — not to mention his accomplishments as an author, notably of Does Russia Have a Future (2015). Gil asked Ray not only to moderate but also to chime in at will. Ray found it difficult to avoid abusing the privilege; it all made for a lively Q&A.


Here is the video; the Q&A, begins at 1:05:10.

Rather than summarize his latest book, Doctorow expanded on its most salient themes, referring the audience to a lengthy review of the book’s contents by Alexander Mercouris in “The Duran.”


The front-burner issues discussed in both collections of Doctorow’s essays, of course, are inextricably linked.  His latest work guides us through the tug of war between the U.S. and Russia, highlighting the existential risk of armed confrontation — a risk played down in Western media by blocking out news from original Russian sources.  Discussing the real risk of a nuclear exchange, Gil referred to Daniel Ellsberg’s new book The Doomsday Machine, which Ellsberg summarized last week in an excellent interview on “Democracy Now.”


Doctorow, a graduate of Harvard College with a PhD from Columbia, has been “banned in Boston,” so to speak — and in Manhattan, as well.  Those who watch his NPC presentation and the relaxed but pointed Q&A will find it easy to understand why.


Trump’s Slurred Speech Tied to Low Battery in Putin’s Remote

By New Yorker satirist Andy Borowitz, Dec. 8, 2017


Laugh heartily — but not too long. Some of the Russia-gate afficionados nourished by drinking drivel on RSM are likely to forward this report to similarly credulous friends lusting for more evidence of Trump’s “dalliance” with Putin. Borowitz’s finding is, after all, only a tad more fanciful than other such “evidence.” Please; someone remind RSM readers that the posting is satire.

Russophobia Goes Comic

Ambassador Craig Murray, December 8, 2017

Former UK Amb. Murray points out that Comedian and Radio host Randy Credico has been subpoenaed to testify to Congress “as the alleged go-between for Roger Stone and Julian Assange, on the brilliant grounds that he knows both of them.”  Murray adds:

“I can tell you from certain knowledge this is absolute nonsense. … Where Russia fits into this mad conspiracy theory I have no idea. If I had any belief that it was the genuine intention of [Congress] or Special Counsel inquiries to discover the actual truth, I would be surprised they have never made any contact with me, as opposed to my fleeting houseguests. But, as I am well aware the last thing they want to know is the truth, I am not surprised in the least.”

Greg Palast: typical candor, insight, and humor on why Trump won

October 25, 2017, 24 minutes

Greg Palast discusses the 2016 election with “Aggressive Progressive” comedian Jimmy Dore – how Trump’s billionaire buddies helped him steal the White House, and how he conned the mid-West workers while Hillary Clinton could not be persuaded to show up there.  Palast and Dore mock the notion that Vladimir Putin played any significant role, despite the McCarthy-ist BS regularly dealt out by Rhodes Scholar Rachel Maddow.  Palast has done a post-election edition of “The Best Democracy Money Can Buy.”

… and now this!

Lethal Russian battle moose trained to invade Finland

No, the source of this alarming report is not former NATO commander, U.S. Gen. Philip M. Breedlove, so susceptible was he to nightmares about Russian-bred Orlov horses carrying Cossack cavalry into Ukraine.  Rather, the source is Finnish media, which last spring accepted and reported as fact an old April Fool’s joke about trained Russian military moose going into battle.

hummmm… “accepted as fact”

Matt Taibbi’s Slip Shows Beneath Praise for Ed Herman:

RIP Edward Herman, Who Co-Wrote a Book That’s Now More Important Than Ever

We need a new ‘Manufacturing Consent’

By Matt Taibbi, November 14, 2017


In his eulogy for Herman who, with Noam Chomsky, wrote the classic Manufacturing Consent, Taibbi makes the point that Ed’s work “has never been more relevant” – oops, except for Herman’s skepticism regarding Russia-gate.  The following two paragraphs reflect the painful contortions journalists like Taibbi go through, having drunk too much of the Kool-Aid served by the New York Times and the rest of the Establishment.



In his last piece, from this past summer, Herman made a list of some of the whoppers the media has foisted on the public over the years: the depiction of the U.S. not as an invader but as a defender of South Vietnam against “aggression,” the notion that the Soviets were behind a papal assassination attempt, the “missile gap” and others.

Herman was a skeptic about the current Russia news, but that isn’t why his work is relevant today. You can believe he’s dead wrong on Russia and Trump, and Manufacturing Consent would still be far more relevant now than it was when he and Chomsky first wrote it. [bold added]



See what I mean?  Am I the only one to see supreme irony in the fact that Taibbi would credit Herman with unmasking key historical WHOPPERS, but the fact that he was a “skeptic” about Russia-gate … well, “you can believe he’s dead wrong” on that one.  One can still admire Herman for providing the framework and conceptual tools needed to unmask whoppers – except please don’t apply them to Russia-gate. Would the NY Times manufacture consent on Russia-gate?  Does anyone remember the Times’scheerleading for the war on Iraq?


Oh, I think I get it.  I went and found the last piece Ed Herman wrote:


Fake News on Russia in the New York Times, 1917-2017

by Edward S. Herman / July 8th, 2017


Herman nails it.  He knows how it all works, and can spot REALLY FAKE NEWS, because, well, he wrote the book.  In my mind’s eye I can see him smiling with satisfaction while putting the finishing touches to his parting shot – at the same time realizing that his parting shot was likely to be missed by those in most need of his observations.


It is just short of amazing that Kool-Aid-drinking journalists can perform the mental gymnastics necessary to honor Herman, on the one hand, and remain a card-carrying member of Establishment groupthink, on the other.  And spread “consent” of the kind “manufactured” by the New York Times on Russia


This is the first I heard of Herman’s farewell address, so to speak.  Had any of you seen it already?  Is it totally unknown to “progressives?”  Would they read it if you asked them?


Hat tip to Matt Taibbi for referring us to it.  It is a must-read, in my view. As for the Herman/Chomsky book Manufacturing Consent?  Taibbi is correct — “it has never been more relevant.”  But there is no need for a new Manufacturing Consent.  It would suffice to re-read the old one.