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Nation on the Take: How Big Money Corrupts Our Democracy and What We Can Do About It
Nation on the Take: How Big Money Corrupts Our Democracy and What We Can Do About It
by Wendell Potter
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $19.44
74 used & new from $10.62

4.0 out of 5 stars New Material on One Old Issue -- Neglects the Other Eleven Electoral Reform Issues, May 10, 2016
There is new material in this book, the authors are passionate, informed, and articulate, and they raise an issue that is of vital importance. However, and I list ten other books below to make the point, this is not a new issue, nor is it the whole issue. There are twelve separate electoral reforms that must be implemented together, in a single simultaneous Electoral Reform Act, if we are to restore integrity to how we elect our representatives (at all three levels -- the authors excel at showing how state and local initiatives are changing the fund-raising dynamic).

NEGATIVE BOOKS (5)
935 Lies: The Future of Truth and the Decline of America's Moral Integrity
Breach of Trust: How Washington Turns Outsiders Into Insiders
Grand Illusion: The Myth of Voter Choice in a Two-Party Tyranny
Running on Empty: How the Democratic and Republican Parties Are Bankrupting Our Future and What Americans Can Do About It
The Ambition and the Power: The Fall of Jim Wright: A True Story of Washington

POSITIVE BOOKS (5)
Democracy Matters: Winning the Fight Against Imperialism
Escaping the Matrix: How We the People can change the world
Extreme Democracy
The Tao of Democracy: Using Co-Intelligence to Create a World that Works for All
Where Have All the Leaders Gone?

I am the top Amazon reviewer for non-fiction, reading in 98 categories. I have posted a free online essay, Democracy Lost, with one hundred of my Amazon views organized to support that short essay (tiny url dot com forward slash Steele-Reform). Call this book one hundred and one, but I am not doing a long form review in part because too much money is not the core problem; too little integrity is the core problem.

The twelve issues contained in the Electoral Reform Act that Bernie Sanders and his staff have six times refused to introduce on the Hill (note how #12 would eliminate Hillary Clinton's super-delegates) are as follows, based on five years of aggregation that began with the Occupy working group on electoral reform and crystallized during my brief candidacy for the Reform Party's presidential nomination (which led to many people getting in touch with me -- these are their ideas, not mine):

01 Universal Registration + Prisoners Vote
02 Free & Equal Ballot Access (I had to run for president to learn we have EIGHT accredited national parties, six of them blocked)
03 Tightly-Drawn Districts (end of gerrymandering)
04 Free & Equal Public Funding
05 Free & Equal Media Access
06 Inclusive Debates + Cabinet Debates with Cabinets announced in advance of Election Day)
07 Open Primaries
08 Election Day Holiday + Free Public Transport
09 Paper Ballots + Exit Polls
10 End Winner Take All Voting (e.g. Instant Run-Off)
11 Legislative Process Integrity -- all legislation posted in advance, no secret clauses)
12 Proportional delegate assignment based on voter choice, no super-delegates unique to each party

Dr. Russell Ackoff used to talk to the need to stop trying to do the wrong things righter, do the right thing. Getting money out of politics is tired. Necessary, but insufficient. Having a national discussion -- an Electoral Reform Summit and a nation-wide Living Room Conversation -- about electoral reform in all its possible permutations -- that would be wired.

With liberty and justice for all,
ROBERT David STEELE Vivas (a white Latino, yes, they come in all colors)
Democracy Riots! We are all black now - deal with it.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: May 22, 2016 12:14 PM PDT


Designing Regenerative Cultures
Designing Regenerative Cultures
Price: $24.00

8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 6 Star Handbook for Saving Civilization & Earth, May 10, 2016
This book makes the jump from 5 stars (generally I don't bother to review a book if it is not a four or five star read) to 6 stars -- my top ten percent -- because of the combination of Questions Asked, glorious color graphics, and the total holistic nature of the book -- this is easily a PhD thesis in holistic analytics, true cost economics, and open source everything engineering. Indeed, this book could be used as a first-year reference across any humanities and science domain, they would be the better for it.

It is of value to ministers of government, managers of corporations, administrators of non-profit and educational organizations, labor union and religious stewards, and every single citizen planning to be alive in five years and beyond.

From the cover with its four core value-propositions:

01 Transformative Innovation
02 Biologically Inspired Design
03 Living Systems Thinking
04 Health and Resilience

through each of seven chapters and a conclusion where deep questions are asked and answered, to the references, where a bitly shortcut is easily used for each and every reference, I am simply delighted to have this compilation of life-affirming wisdom in my hands.

This is a practical book and it is a spiritual book. I particularly like the six points made by David Orr in the first of two Forewords, the sixth of which suggests that systems thinking -- holistic design -- is akin to the core nature of religion in binding us all together in our stewardship of the Earth as a shared habitat.

I cannot over-state the value of the questions asked in each chapter. This is a book that Joan Blades and Living Room Conversations could easily take on as a global starting point for the one conversation that matters most, the question of who we are and why we are more worthy together than apart.

As I go through the book, I see the humility of the questions -- this is a book that embraces the idea that "we" can come up with better answers than the author by himself -- and the very wide net the author has cast to capture the thoughts of others that are very elegantly distilled in this easy to read, very broad, and also very deep, manifesto for the future of humanity and Earth.

Collective design is what you get when you achieve collective intelligence. The author has done a fine job of tapping into the pioneering works of others such as Elinor Ostrom who earned the Nobel for her book Governing the Commons: The Evolution of Institutions for Collective Action (Political Economy of Institutions and Decisions), and Tom Atlee, who did not, but could, for his collected works including The Tao of Democracy: Using Co-Intelligence to Create a World that Works for All.

As the book morphs from introduction to conclusion it comes together with two other books I have recently reviewed, by circumstance also 6-Star books (the portal to all my reviews sorted by 98 categories and each star class is at Phi Beta Iota Public Intelligence Blog / Reviews (Page), Pedro Ortiz's The Art of Shaping the Metropolis, and Parag Khanna's book, Connectography: Mapping the Future of Global Civilization. The author ends strongly, to include an introduction to holistic planning of land, biological monitoring, grazing, and finance. He draws ably from others -- for example, Figure 25 on page 223, is a redrawn version of The Solidarity Economy building on the work of Ethan Miller.

I am stunned to find that Figure 29 is from The Open-Source Everything Manifesto: Transparency, Truth, and Trust (Manifesto Series) so I cannot help but be moved by the fact that the author detected and understood why we must migrate from an economics for the few to an economics for the many, and the only way to do that affordably and scalably is by embracing "open" across all domains, not just the information technology domain -- the five billion poor must be empowered with free energy, free clean water, free pressed-brick shelters, and free Internet access, in return they will innovate and create infinite wealth with a regenerative aspect.

The book ends, and I quote (page 268):

"Living the questions is an opportunity to connect, to yourself, to your community, to your world."

Somebody give this guy an honorary PhD -- he has more than earned it. While I always liked E. O. Wilson, his stuff is hard to read -- a precursor in some ways to this book, Consilience: The Unity of Knowledge, gave me a headache despite the importance of the material. Similarly, while very subtly present, the spiritual aspect of this book is in keeping with the very best of other works, such as James Molben's God and Science: Coming Full Circle?.

On my Latino side, going back to my mother's family in Spain via Colombia, the family motto was "Que Vivas" -- that you might live! Indeed. The author has provided a manifesto for life. I could not be more impressed.

Best wishes to all,
ROBERT David STEELE Vivas
INTELLIGENCE FOR EARTH: Clarity, Diversity, Integrity, & Sustainability
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: May 10, 2016 11:52 AM PDT


The Art of Shaping the Metropolis
The Art of Shaping the Metropolis
by Pedro B. Ortiz
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $60.35
40 used & new from $13.69

12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 6-Star Guide to Saving Every City in Every Country -- a World-Changing Book, May 4, 2016
This is an extraordinary book, easily five stars but I am elevating it to 6 stars (my top ten percent across over 2000 reviews, all but a handful non-fiction) because the author is not just a genius, but he explains his deep multi-level knowledge brilliantly. I have never seen a collection of complicated nuanced topics presented in such a compelling, easy to understand, well-illustrated manner. The case studies abound. The publisher is to be complemented for the purity of the presentation -- a stunning book with perfectly laid out pages, glossy color on every page, and a superb index, which is where most publishers fail their authors.

To my surprise -- I know the authors from totally different domains -- this book is a perfect complement to another 6-Star book, by Parag Khanna, Connectography: Mapping the Future of Global Civilization that addresses many of the same issues but at the continental level.

I have gone through the book twice, the first time to read it, the second time to extract core points for what I wish to be a world-class review. As with Parag Khanna, this author Pedro Ortiz merits a personal meeting with Prime Ministers and Presidents and Ministers who wish to avoid poverty and instability that inevitably accompanies poor city planning. This author is so very talented I would love to see entire schools built around him to create a whole new generation of metropolis architects and strategists, so he moves from school to school, continent to continent, city to city, nurturing others doing the hard work each day that thousands must do. He is, without question, a "seer."

The book opens by making it clear that the metropolis -- not the village, not the city and not the nation-state -- is the center of gravity for stability or instability -- for peace and prosperity or not -- and by demonstrating that the two non-negotiable factors that must be recognized and managed are the environmental including especially water and steep slopes; and the transportational, which is far more nuanced than most understand.

One must get all the way through the book to completely appreciate the brilliance of the author (obviously a master architect and strategist without peer that I know of) in distinguishing between six levels of strategic thinking:

INTERNATIONAL: Aviation
NATIONAL: Trains (high-speed preferred)
REGIONAL: Trains (commuter)
METROPOLITAN: Trains (metro)
URBAN: BRT-LRT-Bus-Taxi
MICRO-URBAN: Bicycle-Pedestrian

As a former military intelligence officer who led the charge in 1992 for the Marine Corps to demand proper 1:50,000 combat charts with contour lines (we still do not have them for most of the world), I absolutely loved the author's table showing the following map scales that architects must use as they consider the "multi-level chess game" that the author is teaching with this book:

1:50,000,000 Geopolitics (UN, NATO, EU, IMF, OECD)
1:5,000,000 Regional and continental
1:500,000 National development
1:50,000 Regional and metropolitan planning
1:5,000 Urban design
1:50 Architecture

The book's status in the 6-Star range was assured when I came to the author's concluding discussion of ethics and the conflicts that emerge between politicians and professionals and the various stake-holders that lobby for their own interests without regard to the facts or the context.

Every single page of this book was for me, riveting. Easy to read, brilliantly illustrated, showing with many case studies both the mistakes and the possibilities for major cities around the world, with particular respect paid to the very large metropolitan areas outside the West.

If I were a national or metropolitan leader -- or an African billionaire thinking about who to insist be in charge of thinking about how to spend billions toward the future -- the author would most certainly be a constant in the circle of advisors I would create. Others would focus on free energy, unlimited desalinated water, urban aquaponics, pressed-brick and other low-cost housing, and of course very robust, free broadband access for every citizen at every level of income.

Another book I have in hand and will review later, the third in this collection (along with my own recent books on intelligence for earth and open source everything), is also recommended along with this book and Connectography: the new book by Daniel Christian Wahl, Designing Regenerative Cultures.

With best wishes to all,
ROBERT David STEELE Vivas
INTELLIGENCE FOR EARTH: Clarity, Diversity, Integrity, & Sustainability
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: May 6, 2016 4:19 AM PDT


Connectography: Mapping the Future of Global Civilization
Connectography: Mapping the Future of Global Civilization
by Parag Khanna
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $18.00
74 used & new from $12.74

63 of 64 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 6-Star Utterly Brilliant Survey and Strategy, April 19, 2016
The author of this book has done something no one else has done – I say this as the reviewer of over 2,000 non-fiction books at Amazon across 98 categories. For the first time, in one book, we have a very clear map of what is happening where in the way of economic and social development; a startlingly diplomatic but no less crushing indictment of nation-state and militaries; and a truly inspiring game plan for what we should all be demanding from countries, cities, commonwealths, communities, and companies, in the way of future investments guided by a strategy for creating a prosperous world at peace.

This is a nuanced deeply stimulating book that makes it clear that China’s grand strategy of building infrastructure has beaten the US strategy of threatening everyone with a dysfunctional military that crushes hope and destroys wealth everywhere it goes; that connectivity (cell phones, the Internet, roads, high-speed rail, tunnels, bridges, and ferries) is the accelerator for wealth creation by the five billion poor that most Western states and corporations ignore; and it provides to me more surprises, more factoids I did not know, more insights – than any five to ten other books I have read over time.

At one point it occurred to me that in some ways the author is our generation’s successor to Alvin Toffler, Peter Drucker, and Robert Kaplan, combined. I really am deeply impressed, in part because the author’s insights come from years of crisscrossing the world and touch reality in a hands-on manner not achieved by any diplomatic, intelligence, commercial, media, or academic network in existence today; and in part because the book comes with 38 glorious color maps that are each alone worth the price of the book [an appendix points to 38 web sites that supplement the book and are a discovery journey of their own].

This is the best book – the deepest and the most useful – the author has produced to date. This is a book that should be read by every prime minister, president, senator, organizational chief – and by those who aspire to such positions. Many people publish content – few publish context – this book has both.

I have over ten pages of notes – below are just 4 quotes and 10 insights from among the hundred or so I took notes on – and strongly recommend this books for all libraries, all war colleges, all university overview courses on civilization and its malcontents.

QUOTE (175): “America’s nominal power is unsurpassed, but subtract for deterrence, distance, and competence, and its effective power is less formidable than appears on paper.”

QUOTE (199): “Eurasia represents two-thirds of the world’s population, economy, and trade, and that is before it genuinely fuses together into a connected mega-continent through voluminous durable infrastructures that will smooth and speed commerce.”

QUOTE (225): “No amount of ‘soft power’ can substitute for cutting a fair deal.”

QUOTE (287): “Guangzhou’s first lesson is the importance of administrative harmony. … The second lesson from the delta region’s evolution is leveraging openness.”

INSIGHTS:

3/4 of the world’s population lacks basic infrastructure and utilities – this is the center of gravity going forward.

China has 2,000 commercial maritime vessels compared to 200 for the USA at the same time that Chinese high-speed rail is the 21st century alternative to air and road travel around the world.

China also has multiple sucking chest wounds, including the loss of half its rivers such that its population has one fifth the per capita water compared to the rest of the world; buildings that last fifteen years instead of thirty-five.

Devolution (smaller sovereignty/control zones) is inherently both democratic and efficient – we are migrating from sovereign space to admin space, in which hybrid governance where all non-government players have equal voice and vote) removes friction and increases flow.

Global warming is good for Canada, Greenland, Iceland, Norway, and Russia – the Arctic is the next frontier, and ideally will be kept demilitarized - a priority championed by Norway.

Iran is the most connected nation in the Middle East.

Muslim violence in the Middle East is politically fostered and neither inherent in Islam nor ideological.

Russia, for lack of infrastructure, is losing swaths of its previously controlled territory, citizens, and resources to Europe in the East and China in the West; Brazil, India, Indonesia, Nigeria, and Russia are all under-performing for lack of investment in infrastructure (communications and transportation).

Special Economic Zones (SEZ) represent the unbundling and remixing of territory and resources, the relative demise of the nation-state in the face of superior agility at the city-state level.

Systemic change happens every couple of centuries – we are on the cusp of a global systemic revolution that will change every paradigm from economics to governance to lifestyle.

I have one caveat about this book, easily corrected in future printings and translations. The book comes with the most incomplete index I have ever encountered in a book of this quality and depth. If the book as a whole is a six-star work, the index is at best a 2 and barely so.

Readers interested in going into depth on any particular threat or policy (e.g. poverty as a threat or water as a policy) can find my 2000+ summary reviews online sorted by category at Phi Beta Iota Public Intelligence Blog.

Below are ten books I recommend as supporting complements to this great work.

Transforming the Dream: Ecologism and the Shaping of an Alternative American Vision
The Big Disconnect: Why The Internet Hasn't Transformed Politics (Yet)
Governing the Commons: The Evolution of Institutions for Collective Action (Political Economy of Institutions and Decisions)
The Lessons of History
Homeland Earth : A Manifesto for the New Millennium (Advances in Systems Theory, Complexity and the Human Sciences)
A User's Guide to the Crisis of Civilization: And How to Save It
World 3.0: Global Prosperity and How to Achieve It
Grand Strategies: Literature, Statecraft, and World Order
God and Science: Coming Full Circle?
Ideas and Integrities: A Spontaneous Autobiographical Disclosure

ROBERT David STEELE Vivas
INTELLIGENCE for EARTH: Clarity, Diversity, Integrity, & Sustainability


ANOTHER French False Flag?: Bloody Tracks from Paris to San Bernardino
ANOTHER French False Flag?: Bloody Tracks from Paris to San Bernardino
by Dr. Kevin J. Barrett
Edition: Paperback
Price: $19.95
3 used & new from $19.95

24 of 26 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Nothing Is Ever What It Seems to Be -- Question Authority!, January 7, 2016
EDIT: Since there is no Look Inside the Book offered, I have added the complete table of contents at the end of this review.

Disclosure: I have a chapter in this book, "Was Paris a False Flag," in which I draw on my background as a CIA clandestine services officer with covert operations experience (false flags are a form of covert operation), as well as my extensive reading and reviews here at Amazon, where I read and review in 98 categories.

I have been an admirer of Veterans Today and Dr. Kevin Barnett for years. Since 9/11 occurred, the only US government sponsored atrocity more shocking than the government-sanctioned assassinations of John F. Kennedy and Martin Luther King, I have been much engaged with the fundamental question of who is actually behind regime changes, assassinations, and other atrocities.

In the past decade I have come to see that there are seven U.S. Governments, not one -- a Wall Street government, a White House government, a Pentagon government, a CIA government, a neo-nazi/neo-conservative Zionist loving government (not a contradiction in terms, the Zionists are the new Nazis), and others.

I strongly recommend this book to all patriots and open-minded citizens who wish to consider the possibility that their governments are not in friendly hands, and that there exists a neo-Nazi "deep state" that emerged out of World War II to ultimately triumph against democracy. This neo-Nazi force is tightly intertwined with the governments of Saudi Arabia, Qatar, the UAE, and Turkey. It has deep roots within the British and French and German and US governments.

Nothing is what is appears. This book is a helpful contribution to those who wish to probe the depths of our modern depravity.

CONTENTS

Introduction: ANOTHER French False Flag! Why SHOULDN’T We Jump to Conclusions? Kevin Barrett 9

Part 1: What Really Happened?

1. Paris 11/13/15: The Matrix Extends Its Reach Paul Craig Roberts 23

2. Decoding the Paris Attacks: ISIS Blowback or French-Israeli False Flag? Brandon Martinez 37

3. Paris Again Hit by Fictional Terror Nick Kollerstrom 55

4. Anatomy of a False Flag Stephen Lendman 69

Part 2: False Flags and Deep States: Theory and Practice

5. Deep States: A Threat to Democracy? Philip Giraldi 75

6. Was Paris 11/13 a False Flag Event? A Matrix for Evaluating Possibilities Robert David Steele 81

7. Academic Complicity in the Global War of False Flag Terrorism Anthony Hall 89

8. The War of Terrorism: Drugs, Death Squads, Class Rule and Resistance Gearóid O Colmáin 103

9. Wars: US Militarist Factions in Command James Petras 119

10. The Urgency of Now Barry Kissin 135

11. Why Paris 11/13? Mujahid Kamran 143

Part 3: Who IS ISIS?

12. We Are ISIS Ken O’Keefe 159

13. How We Know ISIS Was “Made in the USA” Jim Fetzer 163

14. All This Has Nothing to Do with Islam Alain Soral 167

15. Calling Takfir on Takfiris and Terrorism Rasheed al Ḥājj 175

16. The Khawarij Phenomenon: A False-Flag War on the Muslim Ummah Zaid Hamid 183

17. France: The Guinea Pig for War on Russia? Imran N. Hosein 201

18. The Terror Which Could End All Western Democracies (But Who Killed the French Marianne?) Catherine Shakdam 205

Part 4: Media Lies, Bias, Cover-Ups and Complicity

19. The Role of the Media in Agenda-Driven Coverage of Terrorist Events A.K. Dewdney 215

20. San Bernardino Media Hoax: CNN, Media, “Victims’ Families” Ransack Suspects’ Family Home, Faux FBI Crime Scene Patrick Henningsen 223

21. Covering 11/13: The Stagecraft of “Reliable Sources” James Tracy 229

22. The Paris Attacks and the White Lives Matter Movement Ajamu Baraka 245

Part 5: False Flags and the New World Order

23. Signs of Satanism: Occult Fingerprints All Over Paris Attacks Ole Dammegard 249

24. Cognitive Dissonance: Media Masks Ghastly Truth Behind Terror Henry Makow 259

Part 6: Questioning the False Flag Paradigm

25. False Flag? Reflections on Speculation, Certainty, and Resistance Gilad Atzmon 267

26: Interpreting Our Long History of 9/11s Eric Walberg 275

27: False Flag Paradigm Shift: A Response to Atzmon and Walberg Kevin Barrett 285

Part 7: Youth for Truth: A Generational Awakening?

28. Today, Terrorism Is Our Common Worry: A Message from the Leader of the Islamic Republic of Iran to the Youth of Europe and North America Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei 293

29. US Imperialism and the Wanton Destruction of Cultures: An Open Letter to Iran’s Ayatollah Khamenei Anthony Hall 299

Contributors 305

Notes 311
Comment Comments (6) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Feb 21, 2016 7:50 AM PST


Open Source Intelligence Techniques: Resources for Searching and Analyzing Online Information
Open Source Intelligence Techniques: Resources for Searching and Analyzing Online Information
by Michael Bazzell
Edition: Paperback
Price: $40.36
8 used & new from $40.36

10 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Useful Contribution–See the Table of Contents, January 5, 2016
I started the modern Open Source Intelligence (OSINT) movement in 1988, picking up where earlier pioneers such as Jan Herring, former NIO for S&T, left off. We are still fighting this battle. The CIA Open Source Center (OSC) is retarded — it does less than 10% of what could be done by a proper Open Source Agency (see tiny url forward slash OSA2011), and compounds their ignorance by classifying what they produce.

I *like* this book. If you have any doubts at all, use the superb Inside the Book feature that is one of Amazon’s signal innovations. If you believe — as the OSC believes — that OSINT is all about online surfing in English, this is a great book. It is a good complement to Ran Hock’s stuff, or Arno Reuser’s stuff, and Ben Benavides stuff, and I certainly also recommend the Super-Searcher series and anything by Mary Ellen Bates.

This book is a more sophisticated version of the book I wrote for internal government use in 1996 for the Joint Military Intelligence Training Center, and then again in 2000 for the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, but never to this level of detail, and certainly not with this superb structure nor its currency with all the new offerings from Google and others than did not exist when we started doing OSINT in the Marine Corps Intelligence Center in 1988.

Here are ten links to books here at Amazon that I recommend along with this one — for 30,000 pages from over 800 international experts on OSINT, all free, visit Phi Beta Iota the Public Intelligence Blog, which is the front end to both the Open Source Solutions Network archive, and the home for all of my Amazon reviews accessible in each of the 98 categories in which I read, and the online Journal of Public Intelligence as well as other OSINT posts from contributing editors. The first two books are accounts of the long-running fight between CIA OSC (they call me Open Sores, I now think of them as Open Sh..s). The rest are top of the line values in doing serious research, generally online. There are no good manual on doing Human Intelligence (HUMINT), which is 80% of OSINT, something CIA and the FBI still do not get — they have not grown past the confidential information / traitor paradigm and cannot do outreach to the eight tribes that are open.

Open Source Intelligence in a Networked World (Continuum Intelligence Studies)
No More Secrets: Open Source Information and the Reshaping of U.S. Intelligence (Praeger Security International)
The Extreme Searcher's Internet Handbook: A Guide for the Serious Searcher
Building & Running a Successful Research Business: A Guide for the Independent Information Professional
The Skeptical Business Searcher: The Information Advisor's Guide to Evaluating Web Data, Sites, and Sources
Early Warning: Using Competitive Intelligence to Anticipate Market Shifts, Control Risk, and Create Powerful Strategies
The Art and Science of Business Intelligence Analysis (Advances in Applied Business Strategy)
Measuring the Effectiveness of Competitive Intelligence: Assessing & Communicating CI's Value to Your Organization
Analysis Without Paralysis: 12 Tools to Make Better Strategic Decisions (2nd Edition)
Financial Intelligence: A Manager's Guide to Knowing What the Numbers Really Mean

With best wishes to all,
Robert David STEELE Vivas
THE NEW CRAFT OF INTELLIGENCE: Personal, Public, & Political


Christ's Ventriloquists: The Event that Created Christianity
Christ's Ventriloquists: The Event that Created Christianity
by Eric Zuesse
Edition: Paperback
Price: $20.00
55 used & new from $14.97

13 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Christianity is Fraud Subordinated to Empire, New Testament Written by Enemies of Jesus & Judaism, November 24, 2015
Unlike other books that gently question the Bible's authenticity without challenging the Vatican or Protestant denominations outright, this book pounds a stake into the heart of Christianity with fatal effect. I've read and reviewed several of the books I refer to here at Amazon and I recommend them as context for this book; the below list is both books I have read and others in the same vein I have not.

101 Myths of the Bible: How Ancient Scribes Invented Biblical History
Misquoting Jesus: The Story Behind Who Changed the Bible and Why
Forged: Writing in the Name of God--Why the Bible's Authors Are Not Who We Think They Are
Dogs of God: Columbus, the Inquisition, and the Defeat of the Moors
American Fascists: The Christian Right and the War on America

Note: there are other books with the words "Bible" and "fraud" in their titles, I do not list them here because I consider this book to be "the" book, see the note on methodology below, and the others to be relatively shallow and their integrity suspect.

This book is unique from other works in its methodology -- it could be said -- I am not versed enough to attest to this but I see it as a real possibility -- that this is the ONLY book of this genre that introduces a methodology up front, exercises that methodology all along the way with extensive notes, and then concludes with an integrated summary of the methodology, the conclusions, and why the two are so radically opposed to conventional wisdom.

Many of the other reader-comment here have complained of repetition, but I think that they are missing the essential aspect of repetition as part of the author's methodology: The documents that are being analyzed keep repeating their points, and the analysis of them needs to explain each repetition of them, and to note why a given point is being repeated in a given context. Zuesse does this in order to explain the motive behind each line of the biblical text. I venture to say that repetition is an acceptable if not an essential price to pay for a study that is as scientific as one can get in this domain, and also as radical as one can get.

+ Paul was a traitor to Jesus. Jesus was a Jew and a rabbi, but Paul invented a new religion, Christianity, as a means to shape human history, Paul’s historic achievement, which he succeeded in doing: the religion he created has indeed become the world’s largest. But it was created by Paul, not by Jesus, who lived and died as not merely a Jew but a rabbi.

+ Paul further betrayed the central tenets of Judaism in subordinating religion to the Emperor and making religion part of the support structure for Empire — he offered up a universal Church teaching obedience, most useful to Empire, and consequently embraced by Empire. Paul (in Romans 13:1-7) subordinates the laws of God to the laws of the Emperor, and promulgated the myth that the Emperor was God’s representative on Earth. On two grounds, then, he designed a religion to win: to win the masses by eliminating the danger and pain of circumcision; and to win the Emperors because they now became the source of the laws that the masses were required by God Himself to obey. The Emperor thus became God’s agent — via Paul’s new gospel.

+ Paul developed the lie assigning the crucification of Jesus to Jews, when the author’s sources suggest that Jesus was put to death — as were many others — for refusing to accept the authority of the Emperor, for sedition, for Jesus’s asserting that only God made the laws, that the Emperor didn't.

+ Paul invented anti-Semitism; the author is at pains to make this point and it got my attention. So not only is Christianity a fraud perpetrated by enemies of Jesus, it is inherently anti-Semitic and unjustly so because of its fraudulent foundation, using Jesus’s corpse as a weapon against the living Jesus’s own religion.

That should be enough to get any Christian’s blood boiling and restart calls for a new Inquisition! I found this book provocative and compelling. I am not well-read enough in this domain to be able to render a judgment, other than to say it passes a smell test with me. For myself, I consider all religions that rely on dogma and faith and obedience to be suspect, while those that focus on practice, e.g. Buddhism, seem more in turn with God as Cosmos and love as the core value. I particularly condemn religions that subordinate themselves to fascist tendencies, be they Zionists from Israel or neo-conservative evangelicals and pentecostals from the USA.

My bottom line is that this is a five-star book, the author has done some deep ably documented research, and all those scholars that fail to cite this book and integrate its findings into their work will be living up to the author’s (and my) disdain for pretenders who pontificate and go through the motions without doing the homework. The homework isn’t to cite the thousands of books that have been written about the start of the Christian faith; it is instead to cite the evidence itself — but also to read behind the lines, and not merely on the lines, of the biblical (and other) texts that are being explained within the context of the other contemporaneous evidence.

Best wishes to all,
Robert David STEELE Vivas
INTELLIGENCE FOR EARTH: Clarity, Diversity, Integrity, Sustainability


Prescription for a World Crisis. Global Outlook, Issue 13 Annual 2009, False Flag Operations, How Wars Are Started By False Flag Operations. (Global Outlook)
Prescription for a World Crisis. Global Outlook, Issue 13 Annual 2009, False Flag Operations, How Wars Are Started By False Flag Operations. (Global Outlook)
by Fred Burks
Edition: Paperback

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Mind-Expanding Modern Equivalent of Whole Earth Catalog or Anarchists Cookbook, November 21, 2015
I consider this the New Age counterpart to the first Whole Earth Catlog, a non-violent alternative to the Ararchist Cookbook.

As with most publications where passion is paramount, I retain a reserve of caution on perhaps 20% of the content, but the other 80% is not only truthful content, it is truthful content not available from any government or media source that has been artfully and intelligently integrated from a vast array of non-fiction sources.

This volume has seven parts and a resource guide, the parts focusing on the invisible government; historic patterns of deception, why 9/11 was a false flag operation; why so many cannot see through the official lies; Swine Flue Vaccinations and Internet Censorship (or Shut-Down as potential operations; other strategies of the invisible government; and a guide to surviving the global crisis.

This is a responsible, intelligent publication. Monetary Reform and Direct Democracy are on the table now. 9/11, and the pervasive but inept attempt to conceal that true nature of that atrocity opened the eyes of too many–when that was followed by 25 documented imeachable offenses and 935 documented lies by Dick Cheney and his subordinaries (albeit too late to stop the elective wars), the stage was set for the collapse of the two-party tyranny and the Wall Street-Federal Reserve cabal of criminal co-conspirators. President Barack Obama is now firmly faced with a choice: stay with the ship on the rocks; or be the George Washington this century, pass Electoral Reform, and BE the President rather than the puppet in chief.

As we all consider whether the Paris events (Charlie Hebdo and now Friday the 13th, or 11/13) are false flag events, this publication is a useful starting point, along with everything to be found at Phi Beta Iota Public Intelligence Blog, searching for "False Flag."


Big Data, Little Data, No Data: Scholarship in the Networked World (MIT Press)
Big Data, Little Data, No Data: Scholarship in the Networked World (MIT Press)
by Christine L. Borgman
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $32.00
63 used & new from $18.55

4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Major contribution with some oversights, September 29, 2015
This book is extremely well-developed and and a major contribution, not least because it it one of the best explorations of information ecologies that are vastly more intricate and cover vastly more time, energy, and locational space, than most realize. It was recommended to me by Stephen E. Arnold, my most trusted IT advisor and author of the book not sold on Amazon, CyberOSINT: Next Generation Information Access.

Another major value of the book is its centrality to the choices of Amazon's erudite readers. Here are ten other books -- culled from thirty -- that are being bought by buyers of this book. What this really means is that we are at the very beginning of breaking out of a very lazy insular academic system (citation cabals, Elsevier controls, only 1% of written papers being published, mono-lingual research, etcetera), and migrating ever so slowly toward a World Brain in which all minds are connected to all information in all languages and mediums all the time. These other ten books are also recommended, with the caveat that they are at best the 3rd grade level in relation to where we can and must go.

01 Cataloging the World: Paul Otlet and the Birth of the Information Age
02 Indexing It All: The Subject in the Age of Documentation, Information, and Data (History and Foundations of Information Science)
03 Data-ism: The Revolution Transforming Decision Making, Consumer Behavior, and Almost Everything Else
04 "Raw Data" Is an Oxymoron (Infrastructures)
05 Beyond Bibliometrics: Harnessing Multidimensional Indicators of Scholarly Impact
06 The Expert Library: Staffing, Sustaining, and Advancing The Academic Library in The 21st Century
07 The Data Revolution: Big Data, Open Data, Data Infrastructures and Their Consequences
08 The Black Box Society: The Secret Algorithms That Control Money and Information
09 Obfuscation: A User's Guide for Privacy and Protest
10 Truth: Philosophy in Transit

The last selection is my own, not culled from group-think. All of my non-fiction reviews across 98 categories can be found at Phi Beta Iota the Public Intelligence Blog, via the Reviews page.

I disagree with the author about the need to make massive investments in knowledge infrastructure. The weakness of the book -- a weakness that pales in relation to its larger value -- is a lack of understanding of where information technology is going and particularly open source information technology. There are over 60 "opens" that have been grouped into nine main open sub-categories at the Peer to Peer (P2P) Foundation page Open Source Everything, all of them data intensive:

01 Open Data
02 Open Governance
03 Open Health
04 Open Infrastructures
05 Open Intelligence
06 Open Manufacturing
07 Open Provisioning
08 Open Software
09 Open Space

Open Data -- with much work still to be done, includes Open Geospatial also known as Open Geo, Open Anthropology, Open History, Open Language, Shallow Web, Deep Web, Dark Web. In dealing with data we must be acutely conscious of the fact that less than 1% of archived digital big data is actually processed (Mary Meeker, 2014), and less than 4% of the Internet is indexed (Google, 2014). Add to that the fact that roughly 90% of what we need to know is not in English, not online, and not "visible" to academics or government bureaucrats or merchants from their air-conditioned cubicles, and you get a sense of my larger concern.

In relation to information technology, we are now beyond Open Software and Open Hardware and moving rapidly to the intersection of Open Cloud, OpenGeo, Open Standards, and Open Spectrum. The mesh network by-passing Internet Service Providers complicit in government interception, is emergent. Commercial search is an abysmal failure, compounded by commercial fraud -- Volkswagon's long-standing crime would have been quickly caught had their software been open source -- similarly Oracle's and others dismal security protocols would be quickly revealed and fixed if they were not using proprietary code to avoid accountability.

One final observation: scholarship is in severe disrepute with the avant guarde who now see rote learning as a Stone Age construct. Scholarship is only but one of the eight data tribes -- the others are civil society (including labor unions and religions), business especially small business, government especially local, law enforcement, media, military, and non-government/non-profit. Whatever knowledge infrastructure we develop must recognize that all eight tribes have to able to share information and make sense together across all boundaries; and that education, intelligence (decision-support) and research must embrace holistic analytics, true cost economics, and open source everything engineering as their shared foundation going forward. There is no government, no bank, no corporation, and no university today -- I single out Stanford, whose President probably never saw my email -- doing this today. Needed are an Open Source Agency, a World Brain Institute, a School of Future-Oriented Hybrid Governance, and a United Nations Open-Source Decision-Support Information Network (UNODIN). In twenty years of seeking a university president or a government vice president (see my open letter to Biden) interested in creating a Smart Nation, I have failed. I dare to hope this new book suggests that the rest of the world is waking up to the possibilities.

Best wishes to all,
Robert David STEELE Vivas
INTELLIGENCE FOR EARTH: Clarity, Diversity, Integrity, & Sustainability


Die deutsche Karte
Die deutsche Karte
by Gerd-Helmut Komossa
Edition: Hardcover
27 used & new from $15.76

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars World-Changing Book, September 18, 2015
This review is from: Die deutsche Karte (Hardcover)
Needs to be translated into English, Russian, and French as soon as possible. He details a 1949 agreement that subordinates Germany as a vassal state to the USA and blindly loyal to any NATO initiative however insane. The agreement supposedly runs for another 90 years. The book needs to be translated into English, Russian, and French as soon as possible. It could and should lead to the fall of the German government, the cancellation of the agrement, the expulsion of all US forces and headquarters from Germany, and the de-Americanicanization if not the complete eradication of NATO. Even if the agreement does not exist -- I am inclined to belief the author, that some such agreement does exist -- Germany has been acting as an extension of the USA, and the book is a foundation for a national conversation in Germany that could end that state of abject subordination and contributory financial, political, and social crimes against the German people as well as other publics.
Comment Comments (4) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Sep 21, 2015 12:41 PM PDT


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