Shock and Awe Has PTSD. Yet Obama’s Game for More.
by Norman Ball / February 26th, 2015
We must cheer our allies even when they meet us in half-measure.
Ever so tepidly, Ron Paul’s widely-reported recent editorial How Many More Wars? recasts the fiscal preoccupations that often dominate the war question. Uninitiated readers could easily conclude that fiscal irresponsibility is the immoral center of U.S. military misadventures. Yet surely Mr. Paul, the killing and maiming of tens of thousands out-outrages budgetary malfeasance? Nonetheless we’ll acquiesce to the former Senator’s favored moral compass, parsimony, as a way in to the latest looming debacle out of Washington ’cause, sadly enough, money commandeers the debate in ways both subtle and …
In Venezuela, politics is always a cause for misunderstanding and long heated conversations among friends and people in the streets. But Venezuelans are far from being a people who would turn against each other. We are known for our easygoing nature and good humor, for loving our visitors, and for being talkative and even sometimes nosy.
During the last year, however, we have seen a fierce media campaign to portray Venezuela as not only a chaotic nation and impossible to govern, but a place where political factions are ready to launch a violent civil war.
… The school has the power to modify the social order.
— John Dewey
There are people, usually of a Leftist persuasion, who otherwise come under the umbrella term of progressivism. Many might well point to the ineffectiveness or futility of progressivism as a movement given the regressivist trends in society: fascism as adduced by corporatization of the power structure, the mere existence of a power structure and its hierarchy, greater inequality, government secrecy and intrusion into the privacy of citizens, espionage, militaristic policing, racism, militaristic hegemony, wars, …
That’s true if for no other reason than the fact that sports absorb billions of hours of people’s time – at all ages. Whatever you think about sports, they’re clearly important for that reason alone.
Sports are also important because they have become a multibillion-dollar industry, one of the top ten biggest industries in the country. According to Plunkett Research, the estimated size of the entire sports industry in 2012 was $435 billion. That makes it much bigger than the U.S. auto industry, movie industry and many others.
Truly, US President Barack Obama’s recent call to address the root causes of violence, including that of the so-called “Islamic State” (IS) and al-Qaeda was a step in the right direction, but still miles away from taking the least responsibility for the mayhem that has afflicted the Middle East since the US invasion of Iraq in 2003.
“The link is undeniable,” Obama said in a speech at the State Department on 19 February. “When people are oppressed and human rights are denied – particularly along sectarian lines or ethnic lines – when dissent is silenced, it feeds violent extremism. It …
“Defense Contractor” is no longer a valid term for US weapons makers.
References to the “military industrial complex” are agonizingly silly particularly since the man who coined the term — President Dwight Eisenhower — was as ruthless as his CIA director John Foster Dulles. According to the Miller Center at the University of Virginia, defense spending never fell below 50 percent of the US budget during Eisenhower’s presidency. In fact, he increased spending on nuclear weapons. And it gets worse:
During his first year in office, Eisenhower authorized the CIA to deal with… Iran that had begun during Truman’s presidency. In August
Elie Wiesel has jumped on his horse to once again topple the enemies of the Jewish state. Wiesel identifies Iran as such an enemy, although it seems rather that it is Israel that has made itself the enemy of Iran.
Wiesel says, in an ad placed in the New York Times and Washington Post: “The Ayatollah Khamenei has been as clear as his predecessor in declaring his goal: ‘the annihilation and destruction’ of Israel. He is bent on acquiring the weapons needed to make good on the deadly promise.”
The Greek Tragedy: Some things not to forget, which the new Greek leaders have not.
American historian D.F. Fleming, writing of the post-World War II period in his eminent history of the Cold War, stated that “Greece was the first of the liberated states to be openly and forcibly compelled to accept the political system of the occupying Great Power. It was Churchill who acted first and Stalin who followed his example, in Bulgaria and then in Rumania, though with less bloodshed.”
The British intervened in Greece while World War II was still raging. His Majesty’s Army waged war against ELAS, the …
In Britain, 700 artists, including many household names, pledged a cultural boycott of Israel, and a leader of the Board of Deputies, the representative body of UK Jews, quit, saying he could no longer abide by its ban on criticising Israel.
Across the Atlantic, the student body of one of the most prestigious US universities, Stanford, voted to withdraw investments from companies implicated in Israel’s occupation, giving a significant boost to the growing international boycott (BDS) movement.
Meanwhile, a CNN poll found that two-thirds of Americans, and three-quarters of those under 50, believed the US foreign …
Until the fall of the Portuguese dictatorship in 1974, apartheid in South Africa was secure. There was no substantial resistance anywhere in southern Africa. Pretoria’s neighbors comprised a buffer zone that protected the racist regime: Namibia, their immediate neighbor which they had occupied for 60 years; white-ruled Rhodesia; and the Portuguese-ruled colonies of Angola and Mozambique. The rebels who fought against minority rule in each of these countries, operating without any safe haven to organize and train, were powerless to challenge the status quo. South Africa’s buffer would have remained intact for the foreseeable future, solidifying apartheid and preventing any …
I think [Winston] Churchill is one of the most dangerous men I have ever known.
— Mackenzie King, Canadian PM to King George VI, June 1939
Yes, it is a little dirty – the sort of fantasy involving that childishly destructive idea of being an imperial figure, an incorrigible traveller, and, at the end of the day, a warmonger who did a few nasty things to save a bad world from turning even worse. This is the central tenet of Winston Churchill, that he has been excused, used and apologised for with robotic repetitiveness, drawn upon as a historical oracle, that we …
While the people face social and economic collapse
by Ophelia Murphy and Dylan Murphy / February 24th, 2015
“This is a city of the dead! For six days we haven’t eaten or drunk, we’ve been going crazy.” “This is genocide against the people, it’s just killing. Six days they’ve been killing us. My hands are shaking. The Ukrainians don’t let us through their side, you can’t escape there. We’re like prisoners to them, as if we’re to blame for something.” Exodus from the city of Uglegorsk
The EU attempt to try and stave off military defeat for the Ukrainian Junta has failed ignominiously. The battle for the Debalcevo cauldron has reached its climax with the defeat of the …
Building towards a new wave of Global South decolonial anti-imperialist Resistance in Britain
by Sukant Chandan / February 24th, 2015
Malcolm X is esteemed as a towering figure in the history of Resistance against the ‘Western’ capitalist-colonial order for in the main two reasons: he and those he worked with took inspiration, leadership and positive examples from actually existing global ‘Third World’ or Black Resistance against colonialism and neo-colonialism and applied that to the struggle of Black people against the system of oppression.
Malcolm X brought a no compromising approach to the Black Liberation Struggle in the USA at a time when the Black masses were intensifying their struggle against the equally intensifying white supremacist resistance that withheld and still withholds …
Only in America could memories be so short that we quickly forget one presidential dynasty’s lack of dedication to nurturing our people and our country. Realistically, the underlying fault lies not with the family. It’s more in the realm of plutocratic exploitation. The lessons of history have shown us that power and control is driven by one basic concept, “The end justifies the means.” In other words, oligarchic forces have always achieved their goals of power over governable civilizations by using any means for that goal, or that end.
In 2015, the Bush family may be that dynastic means. Jeb Bush …
In Britain hunting with hounds has for generations been done for pleasure, particularly that of the landowners. But for many years it has been a very divisive subject, with one side citing ‘tradition’ and the other cruelty towards animals.
Back in 2004 the British Parliament finally passed a law curbing the hunting of foxes and other wildlife with packs of hounds. Unlike nations that have vast areas of wilderness Britain is a small and crowded island and the majority of its people are against this form of hunting.
The supporters of hunting insist that the ‘townies don’t understand the country way of …
In this sedition, we look at the fierce men and women, who have been fighting the head chopping Islamists of I.S.I.S. to create libertarian commune along the border between Syria, Iraq and Turkey. On the music break we have Kurdish rapper Rezan with “Em Kurdin.” Our guest this week is Chris Dixon, author of “Another Politics” a book about anti-authoritarian organizing in Turtle Island.
Science Officer Spock: “Evil does seek to maintain power by suppressing truth.”
Dr. Bones McCoy: “Or by misleading the innocent.”
*****Right off the bat, monopoly media commentators attributed the killings of Charlie Hebdo staff to Muslim terrorism.
There is to be a further clampdown on the way of life in France. The right-wingers in government applauded this. “Public freedom and the freedom of certain individuals” will have to be restricted, UMP parliamentary group Christian Jacob said.
Apple Powers its Data Centers with Renewable Energy and Google Plans a New Electric Car While Congress is Stuck With Fossil Fuel
by Robert Hunziker / February 23rd, 2015
One of America’s great achievements is the International Space Station (ISS), a remarkable testimony to human ingenuity, fortitude, and prescience. Recently, the crew completed the first of three scheduled spacewalks and scientific experiments are ongoing, like studies of worms to help medicine on Earth find new methods for repairing damaged tissue.
As it happens, the International Space Station’s lifeline depends upon supplies, like foodstuff, delivered from Earth via rocket ship or shuttle. That’s how the astronauts eat and live on a life-support system that is independent of Mother Earth. The space station has electricity and modern conveniences, but no supply-ship has …
The revelations last week by the Daily Telegraph’s former chief political commentator Peter Oborne that his newspaper spiked stories that upset advertisers to avoid losing lucrative ad revenue have apparently taken most journalists by surprise. It has been especially embarrassing for the Telegraph, because one of the advertisers it apparently placated was the HSBC bank, currently at the centre of a storm of disclosures that its Swiss operation systematically helped clients worldwide with tax evasion. Other Telegraph journalists have backed Oborne, saying the paper avoided stories that risked antagonising a range of advertisers and even foreign governments.
The real significance of these disclosures, however, …