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Gallic Rebuke: France and the US Rules-based Order

Gérard Araud was not mincing his words.  As France’s former ambassador to Washington, he had seen enough.  At a November 14 panel hosted by the Quincy Institute for Responsible Statecraft titled “Is America Ready for a Multipolar Word?”, Araud decried the “economic warfare” being waged by the United States against China, expressing the view that Europe was concerned by the evident “containment policy” being pursued.

Araud is very much the diplomat establishment figure, having also served as French representative to the United Nations from 2009 to 2014.  But despite his pedigree, he was most keen to fire off a few …

The Volatility of US Hegemony in Latin America (Part 1)

The Pink Tide Surges, 2018-2022

Latin America and the Caribbean have again began to take on a becoming pink complexion, all the more so with June’s historic electoral victory in Colombia over the country’s long-dominant US-backed right-wing and a similar reverse in Brazil in October. These electoral rejections of the right-wing followed left victories last year in Peru, Honduras, and Chile. And those, in turn, came after similar routs in Bolivia in 2020, Argentina in 2019, and Mexico in 2018.

This electoral wave, according to Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro, speaking at the Climate Summit in November, “open[s] a new geopolitical age to Latin America.” This …

 Behind the Decline of the US Left

The left has not become marginalized because of exhaustion or infighting. Its decline was caused by the US government’s more than century long police state operations, purging the left from its historic home in the working class movement, so that it now has only tenuous connection with the organized working class. The national security state – the actual US government – has constantly worked to neutralize anti-imperialist and class conscious working class voices, and instead promoted a “compatible left” in their long-term strategy to divide and control the left.

The working class, particularly the sector in industrial production, had significance for …

Julian Assange and Albanese’s Intervention

The unflinching US effort to extradite and prosecute Julian Assange for 18 charges, 17 of which are chillingly based upon the Espionage Act of 1917, has not always stirred much interest in the publisher’s home country.  Previous governments have been lukewarm at best, preferring to mention little in terms of what was being done to convince Washington to change course in dealing with Assange.

Before coming to power, Australia’s current Prime Minister Anthony Albanese had made mention of wishing to conclude the Assange affair.  In December 2019, before a gathering at the Chifley Research Centre, he described the publisher as a …

Hey CIJA! Conflating Jews with Israel is Racist

Charges of “antisemitism” have been degraded to the point where they often sound like a 6-year-old telling other kids not to play with Johnnie because he has cooties.

Recently federal NDP executive member Ryan Painter quote-tweeted me saying “Don’t listen to anything Yves Engler says. He’s Canada’s leading antisemite and doesn’t want anything more than to spread Jew hatred.” The Senior Director at the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs (CIJA) Nico Slobinsky, American Jewish Committee Campus Board Member Nati Pressmann and Friends of Simon Wiesenthal Center Policy Director Jaime Kirzner-Roberts all liked the tweet from the chair of the …

Xi vs Trudeau: How China is Rewriting History with the Colonial West  

Though brief, the exchange between Chinese President Xi Jinping and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on the sidelines of the G20 summit in Indonesia on November 16 has become a social media sensation. Xi, assertive if not domineering, lectured the visibly apprehensive Trudeau about the etiquette of diplomacy. This exchange can be considered another watershed moment in China’s relationship with the West.

“If there was sincerity on your part,” the Chinese President told Trudeau, “then we shall conduct our discussion with an attitude of mutual respect, otherwise there might be unpredictable consequences.”

At the end of the awkward conversation, Xi was …

A short tale of two peace agreements

Comparing the conflict in the north of Ireland (late 1960’s – 1998 with the conflict in Donbass (2014 – early 2022):*

In the north of Ireland, the conflict lasted about 30 years from the late 1960s to 1998.

More than 3,500 people were killed, of whom 52% were civilians, 32% were members of the British security forces and 16% were members of paramilitary groups. Republican paramilitaries were responsible for some 60% of the deaths, loyalists 30% and security forces 10%.

The area of the north of Ireland is 14,130 km2 and the population around 1.9 million.

At the end of 1993, the Joint Declaration on Peace,

Tuvalu, Climate Change and the Metaverse

When lost to climatic disaster and environmental turbulence, where does a whole nation go?  History speaks about movements of people, whether induced by human agency or environment, finding sanctuary and refuge on other terrains, or perishing altogether.

In the case of the Pacific Island state of Tuvalu, the response is seemingly digital or, as its officials prefer to call it, creating the Digital Nation.  This particular entity, according to its government, will operate in the increasingly fashionable idea of the metaverse, a 3D virtual space marked by avatars of ourselves roaming through immersive experiences.

This does not sound particularly useful for flesh …

Black and Blue: The Many Ways of Domestic Violence World

We are in a rape culture. We have a million examples in this neoliberal and neocon country of that. We have the fact of one out of 12 or 15 girls and women losing their viriginity through sexual assault. We have what — one out of five in this country experiencing sexual assault by the time they hit 40 years of age.

The reality is we have Clarence Thomas as one of the Supremes, with his sick attack on Anita Hill, as well as girls and women at large, and then the frat boy Kavanaugh, more male human stain. Dr. Christine …

Cold, Technical Language

Why they don’t call it like it is.

Enough Science, Gimme Some Truth

I’m sick and tired of hearing things
From uptight, short-sighted, narrow-minded hypocritics
All I want is the truth
Just gimme some truth

John Lennon, “Gimme Some Truth

Science is a sacred cow. People tend to get real punchy when you blaspheme a sacred cow.

Understood.

However, in the name of what is called good science an objective lens might be helpful to see if this sacred cow is worth revering. Scientific thought and its applications should be able to hold up to some scrutiny when put under the microscope, yet the empirical evidence clearly shows our industry-driven approach to science is doing …

Football Capitulates at Qatar

It did not take much.  The initial promises of protest from a number of footballers and their teams at the Qatar FIFA World Cup were always suspect and hollow.  There was Denmark’s less than impressive form of camouflaged protest via merchandise, supposedly defiant with its logo free monochrome colours.  There was the barely threatening promise that armbands about love would be worn.

Then came Australia’s own uniquely celluloid performance: videos from the players claiming sympathy with the various efforts made by Qatar in improving the record on human rights in various areas yet frowning about the fact that more could be …

What is Global Warming?

Qatar World Cup and Panda Diplomacy

This week’s News on China in 2 minutes.

• New international mediation center in Hong Kong
• Growth of state-owned enterprise assets
• Scientists clone mutant gene of a corn variety
• Qatar World Cup and panda diplomacy

The Foreboding Hyperthreat Looms Large

The hyperthreat is a combination of impending ecological carnage influenced in large measure by hidden behind-the-scenes human forces that drain the vigor and lifeblood of reasonable solutions.

A major exposé of the hyperthreat is the essence of a recently released book by E.G. Boulton, PhD: Cancelled Woman, Destination Safe Earth Publishing, 2022.

Dr. Boulton introduces the concept of hyperththreat by reflecting on how “people in the past responded when their worlds started to descend.” Now society once again is at a crucial crossroads like what brought on The Ballarat Reform League Charter of …

Getting Along

Lockdown Wasn’t Imposed to Protect the World from a New Virus but Because the Real Economy Had to Be Shut Down

Why Vaccine Passports Are Not Going Anywhere
If you thought Vax Passports were over — think again — they’re just getting started.

Wrong and Right

Some are wrong, and some are right.

73% of the World’s Population Did Not Call for Russian Reparations to Ukraine

On November 14, 2022, the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) passed a resolution (A/ES-11/L.6) calling for Russia to pay war reparations to Ukraine:

            [The General Assembly…]

Reaffirms its commitment to the sovereignty, independence, unity and territorial integrity of Ukraine and its demand that the Russian Federation immediately cease its use of force against Ukraine and that the Russian Federation immediately, completely and unconditionally withdraw all of its military forces from the territory of Ukraine within its internationally recognized borders, extending to its territorial waters;
Recognizes that the Russian Federation must be held to account for any

American Democracy: Buying and Selling Elections

This was the most important election in American history, as was the previous one, the one before that, and all previous exercises of marketing that pose as democratic rule in our great example of how to fool most of the people most of the time. Of course, this election, as all others, cost more money than the previous marketing fiasco, when more than 14 billion dollars were spent on the 2020 purchase of the white house and congress which rose to more than 16 billion for this cycle of shopping center lesser evilism that cost even more just to purchase …

The Medium: An Appeal for Support

On November 15, as 90 Russian cruise missiles struck at Ukraine’s energy network, a companion US-UK propaganda blitz blamed the Russian missiles for the deaths of two workers on a farm in Poland.

This was a big deal. Poland is a member of Nato and Article 5 of Nato’s treaty reads:

‘The Parties agree that an armed attack against one or more of them in Europe or North America shall be considered an attack against them all…’

The fear being, obviously, that treating a Russian attack on a Nato member …

Symbolic but Significant: Why the Decision to Investigate Abu Akleh’s Murder is Unprecedented

The recent decision by the United States Department of Justice to open an investigation into the killing last May of Palestinian-American journalist Shireen Abu Akleh is not a game-changer but important and worthy of reflection, nonetheless.

Based on the long trajectory of US military and political support of Israel, and Washington’s constant shielding of Tel Aviv from any accountability for its illegal occupation of Palestine, one can confidently conclude that there will not be any actual investigation.

A real investigation into the killing of Abu Akleh could open up a Pandora’s box of other findings pertaining to Israel’s many other illegal …

Smoothing over the Bad News

The cozy blanket and warm milk supplied by the monopoly media.

Outlaw Charter Schools: Can A Charter School Not Be A Charter School?

The Online Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines “outlaw” as:

to remove from legal jurisdiction or enforcement
to deprive of the benefit and protection of law
a lawless person or a fugitive from the law
an animal (such as a horse) that is wild and unmanageable

Over the years much has been written about the chronic absence of accountability, oversight, transparency, rules, and regulations for charter schools. The record shows that these deunionized, deregulated, outsourced, oversold schools run by unelected private persons on the basis of “free market” ideology routinely operate with impunity. The failure rate of these segregated schools is staggering.

Many have …

Plymouth Rock, Juan de Onate, Orange Shirt Day

A No-Thanks Thanksgiving

Below, for the local newspaper, the Newport News Times. (without the images, etc.) Below that, more on this reprehensible genocidal black death Black Friday day!
The First No-Thanks Thanksgiving
Trigger Warning (noun): a statement at the start of a piece of writing, video, etc., alerting the reader or viewer to the fact that it contains potentially distressing material

This hoopla …

Were You Deceived?

There were more than a few people who scoffed at the COVID-19 scare pushed by governments, their compliant media, and Big Pharma. They were ridiculed as anti-vaxxers, more often than not erroneously. The virus was real, but the dangers posed to the masses, the lockdowns imposed to battle it, the useless mandated mask-wearing and the imposition of a vaccine of dubious efficacy and safety have been exposed as Establishment recklessness, a recklessness in which many billionaires made out like

Let There Be Light (Pollution)

And God said Let there be light: and there was light./And God saw the light, that it was good: and God divided the light from the darkness. (Genesis 1:3-5)

Hello darkness, my old friend. (Simon and Garfunkel)

Every now and then, I’m asked some variation of this question: When were you most awed by nature? Like most of you, I have a handful of examples to choose from… but the answer I usually settle on involves gazing at the night sky in a very rural Vermont town.

I had never witnessed that many visible …

Ethiopia: Peace Agreed, Now the Work Begins

Faced with imminent defeat, on 2 November the TPLF (Tigray People’s Liberation Front) finally agreed to stop their vicious attack on Ethiopia. They had little choice in the end, the Ethiopian National Defence Forces (ENDF) had taken TPLF strongholds in Tigray, and encircled the regional capital Mekelle.

The great tragedy is that fighting could have ended months ago, saving thousands of lives, had the TPLF grasped the hand of peace repeatedly extended by the government since the conflict started. Instead of responding to an open invitation to talk “anywhere anytime”, the TPLF set impossible conditions for engagement; used ceasefire time to …

Stop COP

Fossil fuel interests have taken over climate talks. The acronym COP for “Conference of the Parties” should be changed to “Continue Oil Production.” Eighteen of the twenty companies that sponsored UN climate talks at the make-believe Egyptian resort Sharm El-Sheikh either directly support or partner with oil and gas companies. Global Witness/London identified at least 636 fossil lobbyists at COP27. What are fossil fuel lobbyists doing at a climate conference?

According to Pascoe Sabido of Corporate Europe Observatory/Brussels: “These findings underline the extent to which this COP has never been about the climate. It’s been about rehabilitating the gas industry and …

Silicon Valley Fake: Elizabeth Holmes and the Fraudster’s Motivation

It has been one noisy time for the paladins of big tech.  Jobs have been shed by the thousands at Meta, Amazon and Twitter; FTX, the second largest cryptocurrency company, has collapsed.  Then came the conviction of Elizabeth Holmes, founder of the healthcare company Theranos, for fraud.

Pursuing the steps of the college drop-out turned billionaire, Holmes claimed that her company had remarkable technology, capable of diagnosing a number of medical conditions from a mere drop of blood.  The ruse of the blood analyzer known as the Theranos Sample Processing Unit (TSPU), Edison or minilab, worked – at least for a …

Targeting Vaccinated versus Unvaccinated Study Results Counter to Government-Manipulated Narrative

.”

There is evidence that points to the vaccinated being more likely to visit health care facilities.
International Journal of Vaccine Theory, Practice, and Research” — “Taking account of the complexities of healthcare-seeking with measured covariates and outcomes, especially adverse health events, suggests that vaccination may be driving the increased need for non-routine office visits for specific health complaints.”
 
Tim Robbins Apologizes to Unvaccinated for Being Wrong on Covid Policy.”