It is my intention to start a new dedicated page at The Slog called SEARCHING4TRUTH. Beginning with the piece from earlier this week about ‘directionalising’ refugees via text and other social media, everything that involves technical evidence and a degree of detection in that field will be placed there. Today I take a look at MH17 (the plane shot down over Ukraine with total loss of life) and the VW ‘scandal’ that is probably being hugely misrepresented.
The MH17 debate lumbers on fifteen months after the plane’s fatal fall from the skies. The VW ‘cheating’ scandal still has a long way to run. The first has the capacity to bring about global nuclear annihilation; the second, to implode the largest member of the EU and set off a global financial collapse. Yet the media and its ‘journalists’ yomp gaily on in a daily pavanne (correct spelling, thanks Geli) in which their proprietors and/or their ideologies seem happy to crush the truth beneath the feet of a complex, self-defeating dance.
In circumstances such as those, the search for balance (and if necessary, exit from the tribal stockade) is not just a must: it is a citizen duty to the rest of the human race.
The MH17 whodunit
There are several journalists – all anti-Putin – who remain convinced that the MH17 was shot down by Russian forces. For them this is the journalistic equivalent of ‘settled science’. I shall say no more: but I would make the following contrarian points.
- A crash/military aeronautics expert in Germany familiar with the accused Russian Buk Missile told me eleven months ago that, in the absence of shrapnel wounds among the passengers, there was no way that Missile could be responsible.
- Two Polish workers in the Ukraine at the time wrote to tell me that the direction and flight path of the missile was air to air from the West, not ground to air from Russian positions in the East.
- John Helmer and others have written extensively about suspicions surrounding the findings of the Dutch and Australian teams physically and remotely involved respectively in the crash investigation. There seems to me abundant evidence of at least some degree of cover-up…sensational revelations about which, I understand from an EU source, may well emerge in 11 days time when the report is published (12th October 2015)
- All along, Putin has shown his willingness to abide by the contents of the plane’s black box. His offer – something a a checkmate for John Kerry – hasn’t been taken up. So either Putin knows he’s innocent – or that the original box has been destroyed.
Provenance is as ever important. The German expert (given the Berlin position was pro-Ukraine at the time) offers experience and objectivity to further his findings. Poles too are notoriously anti-Russian, but these two chaps – one of whom saw military air force service – were firm in their convictions. John Helmer is an American who lives and works in Russia – and therefore is open to accusations of having ‘gone native’….but that doesn’t fit with his established record of unveiling Russian oligarch cheats and having his life threatened while doing so.
It is Helmer’s most recent articles that give me cause for doubt about the NATO version of events. Last year, Dutch magazine Elsevier scooped details of the secret agreement signed on August 8, 2014 by the four countries comprising the so-called Joint Investigation Team investigating the disaster: Holland, Belgium, Ukraine and Australia. The agreement says if any one signatory vetoes release of facts about the investigation, the other three must abide by it. These are not the actions of innocent men.
Further, details of a published but unreported treaty between the Netherlands and Australia, along with evidence gathered by Australian coroners and pathologists from the MH17 victims’ bodies, reveal suspicions that a Russian-made ground-to-air missile did not cause, and could not have caused, the crash. This was a conviction among the investigators at Hilversium by November of 2014. Equally important, this squared precisely with what the German expert told me last October.
I understand from an Australian source that the conduct of recently deposed Prime Minister Tony Abbott in the conduct of the enquiry is the subject of an ongoing investigation.
Now, I’m not saying any or all of this proves the Ukrainian pro-EU forces did it: I’m saying that it is not settled science. When it comes to the Truth, there is nothing whatsoever to choose between US Corporatocracy and Kremlin Oligarchy. But Lord Mandelson simply adores them both darlings – so perhaps that tells you most of what you need to know.
Evil German emissions cheats
The VW emissions ‘cheating’ story is still in its infancy – but it could very quickly morph into juvenile delinquency unless more balance and reading behind the spin are employed in the reporting of it.
Within two days of the story breaking, I was in receipt of emails from two former car industry bigwigs, both of whom were quite prepared – not for publication, natch – to say that emissions cheating on diesel vehicles was ubiquitous throughout the car industry…..including all the marques and all the continents. I’ve worked on almost every mainstream car advertising account there is, so none of their revelations surprised me: don’t get me started, for instance, on how European multiple retailers lie about the preservatives used on their intercontinentally imported ‘fresh’ foodstuffs.
Now in the last 36 hours more things are coming to light – with some light digging on my part, and yet more whistle-blowers appalled by the hypocrisy being displayed by those with an axe to grind. Veteran Sloggers will be in no doubt about my very low expectations when it comes to the ethics of the German ‘élite’; but in this case, there are those ever-present opportunists hard at work ready to damn what they describe as ‘capitalism’. Please allow me a brief deviation at this point.
The contemporary internationalist left-liberal axis flatly refuses to recognise any difference between one model of capitalism (in reality the globalist neoliberal monopolism which is currently grinding its jackboot into our faces) and a thing airly referred to as ‘capitalism’…which is, in their chosen thought-tunnel, unutterably evil. Their antidote to it – and such people include pretty much everyone on the intellectual Left from Jeremy Corbyn to journalist Paul Mason – is, unsurprisingly, variously ‘modernised’ State socialism.
Not only is this simplification deliberate and archaic in its approach, it is merely suggesting that the antidote to an outdated failure is the even more outdated disaster area that preceded it. It’s akin to suggesting that extensive use of pigeons would be a far better alternative to our contemporary, invasive global internet.
All the empirical evidence from the period in the ‘free’ West between roughly 1952 and 1972 suggests that the mixed economy (in which taxpayer, bourse, entrepreneurial and mutual ownership existed side by side in relatively peaceful coexistence) produced the most balanced, stable and equitable societies we have ever seen. But ignorance, it has to be said, seems in our species to fuel arrogance. Homo sapiens feels safer with the comfort blanket of continuity: this is fine in a linguistic sense – but at best in the socio-economic sphere, it produces stagnant and rigid thinking; at worst, it involves driving by use of the rear-view mirror as opposed to the windscreen. In a nutshell, repeated crashes.
Anyway, in 2015 those who would rather read catechisms than solve problems leap upon single events as evidence of the rectitude of their chosen Bible. In the case of VW, however, both events and more recent informants are suggesting to me that this case is not as it has been presented.
Very interesting, for example, is the tendency to focus on German car marques – BMW and Audi (the latter part of the VW Group anyway) – as the main villains. This does not appear to be true.
Equally, to do this at the expense of diesel as a fuel is dangerously selective. Informant kf notes, “At the end of the day, if the focus is fuel efficiency and reduced CO2 emissions, than particularly for larger vehicles and trucks etc, Diesel is still the better fuel.…The VW scandal, though undoubtedly catastrophic for VW , should not bring into question the use of diesel as a fuel for certain vehicle segments .. in fact it is smaller gasoline vehicles that are probably more under threat over the long-term from hybrids and electric cars not diesel per se”. But in the short term, we would all do well to remember that US-manufactured cars are far more likely to use petrol than diesel…even the smaller models. Hmmm.
A case, one might almost say, of wheels within wheels.
Further still – unless I’m mistaken here, it would seem that most of the models due for recall are not recent; that on the contrary, emission cheating is an historical thing. The ICCT study which found that two older tested VW vehicles were way over the regulated NOx limit also tested a new diesel BMW which conformed to the emissions limit without cheating. This suggests that the technology to get diesel engines into compliance exists now… and three separate additional sources tell me the newer VW/Audi group models will be using the same zero-cheat system from now on.
Of course, far be it for the opportunistic harder Left to print the fact that the EU authorities knew about this two years ago but did feck-all, because that would be to challenge its unchangeable view that anything would be better than no EU….even one that behaves with the same undemocratic cynicism as the long-gone and little-lamented USSR. Part of the problem for the braindead Left, you see, is that for them UKip represents the unacceptable face of Nigel Farage. But in truth, it doesn’t: it represents the unmistakeable voice of the People so long ignored by Daft Labour and its fat camp-followers. It remains my view that the chief problem UKip has is its controlling and bombastic pillock of a leader.
I take three lessons from this latest example of out-of-control agendered media ‘reporting’. First, to suggest the problem is GermanVW must rank as one of the sloppiest reporting case histories since Freddie Starr didn’t eat someone’s hamster. Second, there are other interests and media influencers at work here in a carpe diem rather than conspiratorial form…notably, threatened US and Asian petrol-car manufacturers and those who would reinstall the EU as a Left rather than Right dictatorship. And finally, what we seem to be doing here is peddling as news something that is recent history.
As a means of bringing people to book, I have no problem with that: to forgive is divine, but to forget is dumb. However, is the degree of irresponsible sensationalism on display here really what we need when the survival of a truly great company is at stake? Is this the way to solve the real problem – that capitalism has been hijacked by every sh*thead on the planet from Murdoch and Blankfein to post-Gates Microsoft and black gold brothers Frederick and Charles Koch? Excuse me, but my response is an unequivocal “No”.