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Juxtaposing Anarchy: From Chaos to Cause

Anarchy is synonymous with chaos and disorder. It is a term that stands in direct contrast to the archetype of society we have become accustomed to: hierarchical, highly-structured, and authoritative. Because of this, it carries negative connotations. Merriam-Webster, the consensus source of meaning within the dominant paradigm, defines anarchy as: a situation of confusion and wild behavior in which the people in a country, group, organization, etc., are not controlled by rules or laws; or, a state of disorder due to absence or non-recognition of authority. The implications made in these definitions are clear – any absence of authority, structure,

Rule Pontiania, DuPont Rules the…

Every year millions of tourists from around the world visit London, Europe’s largest city (if Britain can even be included in Europe). They do not travel there because it is cheap, like so many Far Eastern package holiday destinations; nor for the weather, which can scarcely match that of the Mediterranean or Caribbean. It is certainly not for the food, which only becomes edible above the 50 (dollar, euro, pound, take your pick) per meal price range. London’s theatre is also not what it used to be. No, London’s greatest attraction is the legacy of an empire upon which the …

Birzeit Wins Again: Students of the West Bank Unite

In November 1993, I was on a mission. At the age of 21, I wanted to change the world, starting with Birzeit University, the second largest Palestinian university in the West Bank, situated near Ramallah, in the heart of the occupied territories.

Back then I had made a name for myself with my nationalist poetry and my first poetry collection was published a year earlier in Gaza. It was called The Alphabets of Decision. Each assortment of verses started with a letter in the Arabic alphabet, going in order. “It was time for the poor and peasants of Palestine to …

Unmasking the Politics of Commemoration

Reclaiming WW2

In the beginning of May, depending on which precise date your country was liberated from Nazi rule, Europeans commemorate the victims of WW2. I did, however, not commemorate the dead that day, nor did I celebrate my freedom the next. I cannot participate in a mass ritual that desecrates the memories of all the martyrs of WW2 by turning them into mere tokens of Anglo-American chauvinism.

Who defeated the Nazis?

Obama and Cameron characterized the common perception of WW2 in the West when they opened their column in the Washington Post, stating that “our forces began to turn the tide of …

DIiscussing Islam: Western Logic Is Flawed

Of late, checking the news has become monotonous. Every other day, in virtually all publications and verticals of repute, there is some “expert” or the other busy discussing ways in which Islam is in conflict with the rest of world, or how Islam is having trouble dealing with itself, etc.
None of these so-called “insights” are original, nor do they add any merit to the news in general. Yet, such opinions continue to remain in vogue, and are preferred by the common populace. You know, when you segregate people and talk about ‘us’ versus ‘them’, people enjoy taking sides….

UN Battle to “Shame” Israel Over Abuse of Children

Attack on Gaza last year raises pressure on Ban Ki-moon to put Israeli army on same list as Islamic State and Taliban

Palestinian solidarity groups have taken to social media to step up the pressure on United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon to include Israel for the first time on a “shame list” of serious violators of children’s rights.

The campaign, which culminates in the submission of an online petition to Ban’s office on 7 May, was launched after indications that Israel is exerting enormous pressure on UN officials to avoid being named.

Ban’s office is due to make the list public in the coming weeks.

A senior UN source, who wished to remain anonymous because of the diplomatically sensitive nature of any announcement, told Middle

The Baltimore Uprising and the U.S. Government’s Record on Human Rights

On Friday, Baltimore state’s attorney Marilyn Mosby declared that six police officers will face criminal charges including second degree heart murder, manslaughter, assault and false imprisonment for their role in the arrest and homicide of 25-year-old African American Freddie Gray. While this is welcome and encouraging news for those seeking justice for Gray and his family, past experience demonstrates the odds the accused criminals will be convicted are miniscule. Regardless, it is not enough to treat the Freddie Gray incident as merely a violation of domestic law. The actions by agents of the State …

Increasing Legal Suppression of Freedom of Thought and Expression in So-called Free and Democratic Societies

(As evidence for increasing totalitarianism)

Give me the liberty to know, to utter, and to argue freely according to conscience, above all liberties.
–John Milton, Areopagitica, 1644

My main overriding message is far from new: that freedom of thought, opinion, and expression is the very basis of a fair society. That freedom of speech is the foundational individual right for a truly democratic system to exist or emerge. And that this freedom must be defended without compromise, and without bias against any particular view, no matter how distasteful or disturbing the particular view might be to some or most people.

Undemocratic powerful interests always benefit from any successful …

Pope Francis, Sustainability, Congress

On the heels of his Papal Encyclical about sustainability, due in June ‘15, Pope Francis is scheduled to address Congress this coming September.

Meanwhile, and only four months before the Pope’s scheduled address: “The House Committee on Science, Space and Technology voted Thursday to cut deeply into NASA’s budget for Earth science, in a clear swipe at the study of climate change.”

The Holy See does not hand out Papal Encyclicals every day. Rather, an encyclical, which may address …

Refusing to Host the Olympics

The Deceptive IOC Brand

The merchants of the Olympic brand are running out of ideas.  For decades, the deception of common humanity and the broader interests of building peace before the terror of war supposedly immunised the Olympics from slander and critique.  Olympism was a high-ended spectrum of nobility, though it reeked of the body beautiful and a state sponsored cult of blood.

It also meant that countries, and more to the point cities, were encouraged to host the large scale event before a rather inflated name.  Megalomaniacs, dictators, and gullible democracies joined in the profligate fun.  Even mayor Jean Drapeau of Montreal, host city …

The USA Freedom Act Doesn’t End Bulk Collection

Don’t Forget About Section 702 and EO 12333

The business records provision of the Patriot Act, known as Section 215, is scheduled to expire on June 1st. It’s the legal basis for the NSA’s collection of telephone meta-data inside American borders. A few days ago the House Judiciary Committee proudly announced that it had approved a bill, (HR 2048/S.1123) the USA Freedom Act of 2015, which alters the provisions of Section 215. The Judiciary Committee claims that their proposed legislation “ends bulk collection.” At best this is a mischaracterization that flagrantly ignores additional surveillance laws.

According to language of the bill the revisions defined …

The UK and Real Democracy

In the UK social services are being cut because of lack of money. In one of the world’s wealthiest countries there are ‘one million Britons using food banks’.

The Conservatives say they will cut 12 billion pounds from the welfare system if they get elected on May 7th. We learn from an Oxford university research paper that this will push the number of people using food banks up to over two million. At the same time the UK government is spending one hundred billion pounds on renewing our arsenal of nuclear weapons which military leaders consider useless as weapons …

Be Devoted to Justice Not to Order

The announcement by State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby that the six officers involved in the murder of Freddie Gray will be prosecuted was welcomed with cheers at City Hall and in Freddie Gray’s community, car horns were honked in celebration. The welcome announcement is a first step toward justice for the family of Freddie Gray and a hopeful beginning for the kind of accountability that has been missing in Baltimore when it comes to police violence.

This would probably not have occurred without an urban revolt in Baltimore. We won’t know if it was the mass protest marches of thousands …

Winning a Nuclear War

The Prize: Extinction

Don’t expect the concept of extinction or omnicide to roll off the lips of nuclear warriors. Their brains focus on the win-ability of nuclear war to the exclusion of all other possibilities. Let’s take a minute to examine the myopic mindset of nuclear strategists and what we should be doing about it.

The story of nuclear weapons begins with the dropping of an atomic bomb named Little Boy on the city of Hiroshima, Japan on August 6, 1945. Since then, many authors have written and exposed this event as being more about starting a new war with our ally Russia than …

Fifteen Dollars and Teaching for Scraps

When the most highly degreed receive food stamps and eat Top Ramen on Fridays

The fight for the $15 an hour wage is alive and strong in Washington State, for faculty, AKA, professors at the college level. Think hard how the majority of faculty teaching young and old in Washington state, known for Bezos of Amazon, Gates of Microsoft, and Big Planes Brought to you by Intelligence Monitoring Boeing, are precarious, working semester-to-semester and quarter-to-quarter and subject to the whine or whim of disgruntled, uninformed and poorly formed students. One bad evaluation, or one helicopter parent against the teacher’s politics, and, bam, bye-bye $3100 a class. Bye-bye job. Bye-bye campus. Bye, sucker, and please …

How the Establishment Is Trying to Deep-Six Sanders’s Campaign

The Hillary Clinton campaign is now focusing its public pitch at liberal fools to get them to ignore her record and believe her words. Here are examples:

The NBC ‘News’ political analyst (and perhaps a future President Clinton’s Press Secretary) Chuck Todd posted, on May 1, the following item:

*** Why Bernie Sanders likely helps Hillary: Bernie Sanders’ official entrance into the 2016 presidential race is most likely a good outcome for Hillary Clinton. Why? He will elevate many of the issues that Clinton and the entire Democratic Party want to discuss during the primary season (income inequality, curtailing the role of big money in presidential politics, climate change). And he’ll do so

What America’s Media Get Very Wrong about “Socialism”

And about Senator Sanders

On April 30, Jonathan Cohn provided a perfect example of what America’s media get wrong about the meaning of “socialism” — and about the meaning of the new U.S. Presidential candidate, Bernie Sanders.

Cohn’s report was aptly titled, “Bernie Sanders Is a Socialist and That’s Not as Crazy as It Sounds,” and indeed, he started right away with an assumption that socialism is crazy but “not as crazy as it sounds.”

Cohn said that “Socialism, as commonly understood by Americans, means widespread government ownership of business,” but Cohn said that, “that’s not the agenda Sanders has actually been promoting.”

Cohn reassured …

Although Charges Have Been Brought Against the Police, the Justice System Still Doesn’t Work

We should all welcome the news of charges being brought against the six police officers in Baltimore for the death of Freddie Gray. At the very least, the Baltimore Police Department’s culpability in Gray’s death is uncontroversial.

But let’s not get too ahead of ourselves, those of us not on the ground in Baltimore, anyway, in considering this matter resolved, either locally or nationally. Because it isn’t.

The idea that the “system” is “working” because of these charges is completely false. On the morning of May 1, soon after the charges were brought, Al Sharpton spoke to Tamron …

Techno-Financial Capital and Genocide of the Poorest of the Poor

The war and its results have turned Yemen back a hundred years, due to the destruction of infrastructure … especially in the provinces of Oden, Dhalea, and Taiz.

— Izzedine al-Asbali, Yemeni Human Rights Minister

Yemen is devastated. There are no roads, water, or electricity. Nobody’s left but thieves.

— a resident of Sanaa, Yemen

The Euro-American and Japanese ruling classes, as well as their collaborators in the Afro-Asian and Latin American countries, have accumulated vast profit. This has occurred through a complex stratified system re-concentrating the world’s wealth through: 1. The exploitation of labor in the First World (North America and Western …

A Terrible Beauty

White Denial in the Face of Overwhelming Evidence

First of all, spare me any #notallwhites vitriol because you haven’t personally lynched any black people today. (Incidentally, it may be a frivolous aside, but can there be any more depressing harbinger of non-change that this–Lynch–is the last name of the newly installed Attorney General?) If that is your initial reaction, you have already missed the points I haven’t even made yet. You might want to stop reading here (though you in particular should probably read the whole thing). It is a thing of sheer beauty–terrible, evil beauty to be sure. But beauty nonetheless in the way that a near …