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Washington, D.C.: The beat goes on

Yon-Genre Mind-dump: unedited

Am here by the White House now and just now hear a Huey helicopter flying. Who’s got the Huey?

I made most of these photos last night at Black Lives Matter Plaza by the White House. Practically nobody arrived here for inauguration. Mostly police, Secret Service, National Guard, journalists, and some “stars” who flamboyantly whisked around with great pretentiousness, pretending to try to slip in while practically wearing strobe lights.

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Now, as I write, I came back to Black Lives Matter Plaza. On the far end, notice the White House. Many people have messaged from across America, Thailand, Japan, Europe, asking if it’s true that the flag was taken down over the White House, indicating the White House has been taken over. No. The flag has been up the entire time. There has been no coup.

Many people have asked me what I think of people like Lin Wood, Sidney Powell, Q-anon or whatever that is, or the retired General McInerney who talked about Special Forces fighting CIA in Germany, and Special Forces stealing Pelosi’s laptop. Have you noticed that I never published any of that nonsense other than that Special Forces did not attack CIA in Germany? Complete bullshit. Please excuse my language — but that really is complete BS.

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My business is all about separating signal from noise. Sometimes this is amazingly easy. Other times, amazingly hard but doable. Other times, I never figure it out.

Seven hours before the Capital Attack, on 06 January 2021, I predicted 90% chance of violence. Likewise, I predicted similar just before the inauguration on 20 January. Both were accurate. After the inauguration came violence in Seattle and Portland. I also predicted — as did others — many months ago that if Trump loses ANTIFA and BLM will go against whoever is next. Watch. If my paradigm is accurate, this will be so. If not, I must adjust my paradigm.

Violence on the 6th and 20th of January was easy to predict for those who pay close attention. More a function of paying attention than of predictive brilliance. Many of the “predictions” that I got credit for in Iraq, Afghanistan, etc., were not actually predictions as much as just seeing the patterns earlier, and accepting the patterns no matter which picture they create. (I did not like that I saw Iraq in civil war, but this was what the fact pattern pointed to, and so I just said where the ball bounced not where I wanted it to bounce. I wanted roses and thank-yous from Iraqis. Got bullets and bombs.)

Here are some reasons I am so accurate over the years. This is partly how I think:

1) I work as if I have autism…travel around and talk with anyone. Look. See. Accept patterns as I can find them, not as I wish they should be, or as others tell me to see. (We see what we think we see…and so we’ve got to constantly fight that tendency.)

2) Constantly reworking my paradigms so that they become predictive. If your paradigm of how things are is always yielding bad predictions, you’ve got to rework the paradigm. Often, just tweaking the paradigm helps. Other times, you’ve got to toss out the entire paradigm. My paradigms on Lin Wood, etc., is that they were just creating hot air. But if they turned out to be accurate, I would adjust paradigm and keep adjusting until it became predictive.

3) Guard against Cognitive Dissonance: everyone is subject to making massive mistakes based on CD. Including me. Guard against CD as if your life depends on it. Because it does.

4) Guard against projection. Difficult, but doable.

5) Don’t be a mindreader. The moment I hear someone say to me, “You think…”… My estimation of their judgement and intelligence plummets. Nobody knows what I think. I don’t know what you think. But we can find patterns. We can create paradigms based on experience that are predictive, but ultimately we don’t really know what each other thinks and feels.

My current paradigm is proving highly predictive. There are “forces” that are working to cause us to fight each other to the point of civil war.

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When I use the word “forces,” this is a nebulous usage and not “Soros” per se, but tendencies, ideas, philosophies, and more, that predate any of our grandparents. Old writings from people like U.S. Grant, or even long before, are highly predictive. Everything we need to know about tomorrow was written by old people who have been gone for centuries.

The pattern is clear. If we do not work especially hard to create conditions for internal peace, we will end up in complex civil wars. And America is not in a vacuum. Tech giants are giants here, but in the larger context they are creating terrible conditions for their own futures. Ultimately, they, like all of us, depend on physical and other security to thrive. By creating conditions of war, our “bubbles burst.” A bigger hand, or just some random hand, that shatters the aquarium we think we rule. Beware of illusion — most of life is an illusion created by signs and flashes of light and singing voices and actors and actresses who themselves are puppets.

Everyone reading this was born into conditions that were set before we were conceived. It does not matter if you are reading this on 22 January 2021, or a thousand years from now in another galaxy. We do not live in a vacuum of space and time. People who understand this are manipulating conditions in our aquarium.

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There is always another truth. No matter who is in charge, the ants will keep doing ant-stuff. Wind and pollen continue to blow across borders. Information leaks faster than helium. Americans are too enabled to be shut down for more than short periods. We will develop new neural pathways and networks that are more resilient.

A big lesson of insurgency and counterinsurgency can be found in non-Newtonian materials. Non-Newtonian fluids instantly change viscosity when outside pressures are applied. Like ketchup. Imagine if water were non-Newtonian: If water became less viscous, we could not swim because we would sink. If water became more viscous, it might be like swimming in honey.

Likewise, as people keep getting pushed and pulled and pressured, viscosity is changing. Some people are easy to push around and this emboldens oppressors. Other people become thicker, create friction, and thus I wrote something years ago in Afghanistan about getting stuck in the mud.

Again, my apology for the complete unedited dispatch. Am leaving D.C. for Texas.

Michael Yon

Michael Yon is America's most experienced combat correspondent. He has traveled or worked in 82 countries, including various wars and conflicts.

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