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Become the Conspiracy

With enough information, anyone can gain knowledge. With enough knowledge and persuasion, anyone can gain power. So, with so much information available to anyone with an internet connection, why did everyone become fixated on fear-mongering, paranoia and conspiracies? Despite people gaining the ability to publish their own thoughts to millions of readers online, they have become more and more convinced of their own powerlessness under tyranny.

Although it is no bad thing that the people are more interested in the inner workings of their governments now, excessive fear cannot do any favors for anyone. In fact, a cowed people are only …

Michael T. Flynn: No Congressional Scrutiny Necessary?

President-elect Donald Trump’s appointees get nuttier and scarier by the second.  Meet Lt. Gen. Michael T. Flynn – the new National Security Advisor.  Unlike other positions in the new administration, such as Secretary of Defense or Secretary of State, Flynn will not be vetted by the US Senate.

Even with a Republican-controlled Congress Flynn probably would have been nixed by the Senate in January, 2017.  Why?

First, he’s a hyper-rabid Islamaphobe.  In his recent book, Flight of Fight: How We Can Win the War Against Islam, Flynn describes ISIS as “dead set on taking us over and drinking our blood.

Further, according to Flynn the …

Disrespecting the American Imperial Presidency

When the dust settled on the November 8 election, we learned that a completely unpredictable, egomaniacal, narcissistic buffoon would inherit the White House and the vast powers that go along with it. This deeply offended many people who see Donald Trump’s racist and misogynistic rhetoric as “unpresidential.” Liberal New York Times columnist Charles Blow summed up this view: “I respect the presidency; I do not respect this president-elect.” That the president-elect should not be respected is a given. But why should we respect the presidency?

The Imperial Presidency of the United States has evolved over the last century to the …

Fight back or go under

The presidency of Donald Trump is going to be a slap in the face of American workers that will wake us up to the reality of social class. Big T’s pedal-to-the-metal policies will show us clearly that we are one class, the ruling elite are another class, and our interests are diametrically opposed. Our declining standard of living is essential for maintaining their wealth, and they will do whatever is necessary to continue that. They will jail us, deport us, kill us, anything to crush resistance.

But in the long term they won’t succeed.

Why not? Because we, the working people of …

Bodies as Propaganda: The US-Australia Refugee Agreement

It all has a hurried sense to it.  With the offshore detention system running into troubles, the Australian government has had to find ways to get rid of the human residents it has promised never to settle in the country. This highly dubious policy, far more than anything Donald Trump could ever wish for, entrenches a further wall of imperviousness to refugee claims from those travelling by boat to Australia.

Max Chalmers provides a neat survey of the quagmire of cruelty that has unfolded over the years.

Three years after the initiation of Operation Sovereign Borders, four years after Australia recommended

Congressional Hawks Rush to Intensify War in Syria

Hawks pass HR5732

Late in the day Tuesday November 15, Congress convened in special session.  With normal rules suspended, they passed House Resolution 5732 the “Caesar Syria Civilian Protection Act”.  The resolution calls for intensifying already harsh sanctions on Syria, assessing implementation of No Fly Zone in Syria and escalating efforts to press criminal charges against Syrian officials.  HR5732 claims to promote a negotiated settlement in Syria but, as analyzed by Friends Committee for National Legislation, imposes preconditions which would actually make that more difficult.

There was 40 minutes of “debate” with six representatives (Royce, Engel, Ros-Lehtinen, Kildee, Smith, …

The Arctic Warms Up For Trump

A little over one week following the presidential election, The Washington Post carried this headline: “The North Pole is an Insane 36 Degrees Warmer Than Normal as Winter Descends,” d/d November 17th, 2016. That headline is not tomfoolery; it is an actual, real temperature reading.

According to NovaNext, PBS, November 18th, 2016:

As the Arctic settles into polar night, scientists are noticing that something has gone horribly wrong. Sea ice levels at the North Pole are at a record low- but even more startlingly, air temperatures are 36° F (20° C) higher than normal across the region.

By any standard, the North Pole …

The Ministry of Focus Never Sleeps: Punditry by Other Means

Reality is serving up a changing-of-the-guard in America in no small order. The fourth estate et al is left punch-drunk following the political outcome of an election that was supposed to be ‘in the bag’. Media and the ‘celebrity’ interpretation of events failed to focus a vast numbers of disposed (deplorable) people on how to act. A billion dollars spent as voice-over failed to do the trick. An election that conveniently ignored America’s very deplorable foreign policy turned out to be a class event.

It now seems that jamboree and anti-jamboree is occurring simultaneously in post-election America and that navel-gazing hubris …

Lebanon: Another President in the Country’s Never-ending Crisis?

After a political deadlock that has lasted for over two years, the recent election of Michel Aoun as the new president of Lebanon on October 31st 2016 has generated more questions than answers. The dramatic consequences of the Syrian conflict make for a delicate balance in this small country, where the cultures of mountain and sea are intertwined. To understand what made this new governing alliance possible, and what is at stake in the coming months, we have interviewed Ghassan Saliba, president of the Information Centre for foreign workers of the CCOO trade union of Catalonia, who is also

Marine Harvest SLAPPed back

On September 23, 2016 Marine Harvest sued Alexandra Morton and John and Jane Doe and All other Persons Unknown for trespass, nuisance and damages.  On November 16, 2016, I joined three hereditary Dzawada’enuxw chiefs who filed a response to Marine Harvest, the biggest salmon farming corporation in the world based in Norway.

Traditional leaders Farron Soukochoff, Willie Moon and Joe Willie (seen below) deny any act of trespass or nuisance as they were within the lawful traditional territory of the Dzawada’enuxw Nation and do not consent to pay damages to Marine Harvest. ((Download 2016-11-15 Response

Slime, Shorebirds, and a Scientific Mystery

Western sandpipers flock by the thousands during migration, one of the natural world’s great spectacles. Photo by Donald M. Jones/Minden Pictures

Hakai MagazineThis article is the first in a two-part series. The second installment, looking at the future of the western sandpiper at Roberts Bank, will be published on November 29, 2016.

As the tide pulls out over British Columbia’s Roberts Bank on an …

Michael Hudson: Donald Trump Wants to Make the 1% Even Richer

Michael Hudson is a Distinguished Research Professor of Economics at the University of Missouri, Kansas City. He is the author of The Bubble and Beyond and Finance Capitalism and its Discontents. His most recent book is titled Killing the Host: How Financial Parasites and Debt Bondage Destroy the Global Economy.

Here Hudson explains how economic terms like capital gains are deployed to mislead the public about who is benefiting from economic policy and where wealth is going.

NATO Quo Vadis? in the Trump Era

Once again as almost twenty seven years ago, NATO is faced with a deep-seated, soul searching existential issue or an internal threat. That’s right, not from an invasion by foes. It faces losing its very relevance or purpose as an organisation in the world.

Its survival is at stake in the present and uncertainty hovers over the military pact in the future. Here’s why. The Atlantic alliance was meant to in the words General Lord Ismay, NATO’s first Secretary General, “to keep the Russians out, the Americans in, and the Germans down.”

During the cold war it managed to do all three. …

Bottling the Demon of Free Trade: Trumpism and Protectionism

The election of Donald J. Trump on Tuesday, November 8 terrified many who consider themselves notionally progressive or traditional republicans.  It also terrified free trade ideologues, and those who believe that opening borders to boundless consumer goods and services eradicates poverty.

There are few better exponents of this idea on trade than Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, whose insistence that protectionism remains an evil to be combated has sounded pious.  Keep the markets open, while shutting borders to people desperately seeking refuge.  In other words, keep such monsters as the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement on the table for full implementation, while flouting …

Good News for Standing Rock from Around the World

Sonoma County, California — “Think global and act local.  This is the intention behind the actions of the Commission on Human Rights, which passed a resolution on Tuesday night in opposition to the Dakota Access Pipeline,” according to a November 18 press release from the Sonoma County Commission on Human Rights.

“We wanted to support the Standing Rock Sioux, but also the actions of our local tribal leadership from the Coyote Valley Band and Kashia Band of Pomo, Federated Indians of Graton Rancheria and Ya-Ka-Ama, as well as the many residents of Sonoma County who have mobilized around this issue,” says …

Filtering The Election

Introduction

When the likes of Saddam Hussein, Muammar Gaddafi, Bashar al-Assad, and now Donald Trump, are declared the latest ‘New Hitler’, we learn little except that they are enemies of the establishment. It means the ‘On’ button has been pressed on a propaganda machine designed for maximal demonisation, leaving no room for public doubt. This inevitably drives comparisons in the direction of Hitler and the Nazis.

The rationale is well-understood by the public relations community. Phil Lesley, author of a handbook on PR and communications, explained the spectacularly successful strategy for obstructing action on environmental issues:

‘People generally do not

Many Americans Should Un-Stupid Themselves

To be upfront, I strongly believe that President Trump is exactly what the USA desperately needs at this time, a disrupter. I say this as someone who worked in the political world for over 20 years, is white, highly educated, old and affluent. I ask all who have negative views of Trump to open their minds and consider my arguments.

In September 2015 I published an article in which I said: “Trump surely has more current and potential supporters than the media and political establishment can accept. Unlike Trump, they have no imagination. The Donald, to …

Presidential Elections: Myths and Deceits

Every aspect of this year’s US Presidential election has been fraught with myths, distortions, fabrications, wishful thinking and invented fears.

We will proceed to discuss facts and fictions.

Electoral Participation

The mass media, parties and candidates emphasized the ‘unprecedented voter turnout’ in the elections. In fact, 48% of the eligible voters abstained.

In other words, nearly half of the electorate did not vote. There were many reasons, including widespread disgust at both major party candidates and the …

Michael Hudson on the Orwellian Turn in Contemporary Economics

Economist Michael Hudson sits down with Sharmini Peries to talk about the elections and his new book J is for Junk Economics.

Killing Arafat: Does Abbas have any evidence?

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas revives long-held suspicions over Arafat’s death ahead of Fatah congress next week

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has revived long-standing suspicions that his predecessor, Yasser Arafat, was murdered. Abbas announced last week that he knew the killer’s identity, adding that the world would be “amazed when you know who did it”.

Abbas made the unexpected announcement during a commemoration, marking the 12th anniversary of Arafat’s death, in the West Bank city of Ramallah, where the former Palestinian leader is buried.

Arafat died in a French military hospital in 2004, aged 75. He had been evacuated days earlier from his Ramallah headquarters after rapidly falling ill. His Muqata compound had been under …