We’ve lived so long under the spell of hierarchy—from god-kings to feudal lords to party bosses—that only recently have we awakened to see not only that “regular” citizens have the capacity for self-governance, but that without their engagement our huge global crises cannot be addressed. The changes needed for human society simply to survive, let alone thrive, are so profound that the only way we will move toward them is if we ourselves, regular citizens, feel meaningful ownership of solutions through direct engagement. Our problems are too big, interrelated, and pervasive to yield to directives from on high.
—Frances Moore Lappé, excerpt from Time for Progressives to Grow Up

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Markets Can Be Very, Very Wrong

Click here to access article by Paul Krugman from The NY Times.

This liberal economist refers to an article written by economists for the American Economic Review which explains how the capitalist market utterly fails to account for one input to the costs of production--environmental costs. Well, for informed people like you and I, this is "old hat". However, capitalists continue to refuse to account for these costs. Krugman explains why:
What this tells us is that we are not actually having a debate about economics. Our free-market advocates aren’t actually operating from a model of how the economy works; they’re operating from some combination of knee-jerk defense of the haves against the rest and mystical faith [my emphasis] that self-interest always leads to the common good.
But, why not also explain the marketeer's (capitalist's) resistance to account for all the devastating costs to workers that their capitalism causes: unemployment, devastation to the communities because many jobs have been outsourced to cheap and oppressed labor areas of the world leaving behind these effects: poverty, poor health care, poor education, high crime rates, divorce, etc

Their "knee-jerk" defense has all to do with the greed and selfishness that characterizes this ruling class. 

Their "mystical faith" alludes to the fact that capitalism is really a self-serving, faith based religion--totally irrational from any sound social system point of view. "Markets" are more than wrong, they are the means by which a class of people engage in crimes against humanity and the environment for private gain. Markets are to the ruling class as guns are to robbers. Ruling class robbers prefer "markets" because they function with the "invisible hand" which allows them to get away with these crimes.

Gilad Atzmon talks about his latest book “The Wandering Who?”

Click here to access article by Silvia Cattori from Voltaire.

In the interview Atzmon, as a former Israeli Jew who has gone through a long process of self-examination, examination of the Holocaust, Zionism, Jewishness, and Jewish anti-Zionists, offers some insights on important issues related to these concepts.
I think that when it comes to Israel and ‘Jewish power’ every humanist, including myself, has a conflict to handle. I would formulate it as such: ‘how can I tell the truth about Israel, the Lobby, and Zionism and still maintain my position as a humanist’. It took me very many years to learn to differentiate between the wheat and chaff. I learned to distinguish between Jews (the people), Judaism (the religion) and Jewishness (the ideology). 

The Debt Crisis in the European Union: Alternative ways out of crisis - Part 7 of 7

Click here to access article by Eric Toussaint from the Committee for the Abolition of Third World Debt.
CADTM: In most cases, the ruling class has no interest in seeing an authentic audit carried out under the auspices of civil society. In other cases, it may resign itself to the idea in order to circumvent the problem.

Eric Toussaint: That is quite true. The case I mentioned earlier corresponds to a situation where strong popular mobilization brings left-wing forces into government who will adopt policies in the interests of the people or go even further. 
And "go even further" is exactly what is needed. Reforms that will only save the system, a system that produces these economic crises and a number of other crises such as war, must no longer be tolerated.

Friday, September 30, 2011

The Best Among Us

Click here to access article by Chris Hedges from OpEd News. 
There are no excuses left. Either you join the revolt taking place on Wall Street and in the financial districts of other cities across the country or you stand on the wrong side of history. Either you obstruct, in the only form left to us, which is civil disobedience, the plundering by the criminal class on Wall Street and accelerated destruction of the ecosystem that sustains the human species, or become the passive enabler of a monstrous evil. Either you taste, feel and smell the intoxication of freedom and revolt or sink into the miasma of despair and apathy. Either you are a rebel or a slave.
Very few people can express this better than Chris Hedges! 

It's up to us, people. If you are waiting for a "leader" to lead the way, then all is lost. You and I and our neighbors must take initiative to create a better world. There is no alternative to a better world. Well, if we do nothing, there is one: a world that is a living nightmare:
...disemboweling every last social service program funded by the taxpayers, from education to Social Security, because they want that money themselves. Let the sick die. Let the poor go hungry. Let families be tossed in the street. Let the unemployed rot. Let children in the inner city or rural wastelands learn nothing and live in misery and fear. Let the students finish school with no jobs and no prospects of jobs. Let the prison system, the largest in the industrial world, expand to swallow up all potential dissenters. Let torture continue. Let teachers, police, firefighters, postal employees and social workers join the ranks of the unemployed. Let the roads, bridges, dams, levees, power grids, rail lines, subways, bus services, schools and libraries crumble or close. Let the rising temperatures of the planet, the freak weather patterns, the hurricanes, the droughts, the flooding, the tornadoes, the melting polar ice caps, the poisoned water systems, the polluted air increase until the species dies.
People all across our country are saying, "I'm mad as hell, and I ain't gonna take it anymore!" See this website for coverage of many courageous people doing just that. No, you will not see these many protests covered on mainstream corporate media. They don't want you to know about it. (They prefer to cover Tea Party events.) They want you to continue to feel helpless and cynical. But, it's really happening. For example, in San Francisco:

Perhaps what we need is a regional union like they have in the UK and Ireland comprised of workers across the US and Canada.

"A Thought Police" for the Internet Age.

Click here to access article by Jonathan Cook from Global Research.
There could be no better proof of the revolution – care of the internet – occurring in the accessibility of information and informed commentary than the reaction of our mainstream, corporate media.

For the first time, Western publics – or at least those who can afford a computer – have a way to bypass the gatekeepers of our democracies. Data our leaders once kept tightly under wraps can now be easily searched for, as can the analyses of those not paid to turn a blind eye to the constant and compelling evidence of Western hypocrisy. Wikileaks, in particular, has rapidly eroded the traditional hierarchical systems of information dissemination.
Read this article to find out how, in the age of the internet, liberal media act as thought police for the ruling class. The author focuses on the UK's Guardian coverage of dissident writers as an illustration.

Obama praises killing of al-Qaida cleric al-Awlaki

Click here to access article by Kimberly Dozier (AP) from The Seattle Times. 

The title of this article should read, "Obama Praises the CIA Execution of a US Citizen".

Here is what Glenn Greenwald who was trained in constitutional law writes about this incident:
From an authoritarian perspective, that's the genius of America's political culture.  It not only finds way to obliterate the most basic individual liberties designed to safeguard citizens from consummate abuses of power (such as extinguishing the lives of citizens without due process).  It actually gets its citizens to stand up and clap and even celebrate the destruction of those safeguards.

Sex and the Single Drone: The Latest in Guarding the Empire

Click here to access article by Tom Engelhardt from his blog, Tom Dispatch.
When legalisms take center stage in a situation like this, think of magicians.  Their skill is to focus your attention on the space where nothing that matters is happening -- the wrong hand, the wrong face, the wrong part of the stage -- while they perform their “magic” elsewhere.  Similarly, pay attention to the law right now and you’re likely to miss the plot line of our world.

It’s true that, at the moment, articles are pouring out focused on how to define the limits of future drone warfare.  My advice: skip the law, skip the definitions, skip the arguments, and focus your attention on the drones and the people developing them instead.
US government public relations offices (President, Sec. of State, etc.) are hard at work concocting new justifications for their war crimes in order to continue keeping the consent of its citizens for its never ending "war on terror".

Obama administration seeks first death penalty via military tribunal at Guantánamo

Click here to access article by Kate Randall from World Socialist Web Site.
The establishment by the Bush and Obama administrations of a parallel system of secret military courts, where the Bill of Rights and other democratic protections do not apply, and where the death penalty can be imposed, is a dire warning of things to come.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Dick Cheney’s Song of America: Drafting a Plan for Global Dominance

Click here to access article by David Armstrong from Transcend Media Service. (Orig. source: Harper's Magazine, Oct. 2002). 
An essay exploring the real origins of the Iraq War, written before the war started.
It is important to keep in mind that this plan could never have been implemented if the 9/11 tragedy had not occurred. Either it was one of the most fortuitous events in ruling class history or it was at least a partially engineered event by the perpetrators of this plan.

Melissa Kleckner is Part of the 99 Percent

Click here to access article by Nikki Saint Bautista from The Indypendent.
In an effort to show the diversity of people involved in the occupation, we will be running a series of interviews highlighting some their stories. For our first installment, The Indypendent spoke with Melissa Kleckner, 31, who lives in Hoboken, New Jersey and is studying social work at Hunter College-CUNY.

The Great Bank Robbery

Click here to access article by Nassim Nicholas Taleb and Mark Spitznagel from Project Syndicate.

The title is intentionally ironic in that it is referring to banks that are the robbers, robbing its citizens.

There are numerous gems of insider information that is rarely mentioned in mainstream media, the propaganda media for the unwashed masses. Unfortunately, they don't provide any documentation. But, I'm sure that these well informed authors know of what they write.
...the elephant in the room is the amount of money paid to bankers over the last five years. For banks that have filings with the US Securities and Exchange Commission, the sum stands at an astounding $2.2 trillion. Extrapolating over the coming decade, the numbers would approach $5 trillion,....
...banks take risks, get paid for the upside, and then transfer the downside to shareholders, taxpayers, and even retirees. In order to rescue the banking system, the Federal Reserve, for example, put interest rates at artificially low levels; as was disclosed recently, it also has provided secret loans of $1.2 trillion to banks. The main effect so far has been to help bankers generate bonuses (rather than attract borrowers) by hiding exposures.
The largest, most sophisticated banks have become expert at remaining one step ahead of regulators – constantly creating complex financial products and derivatives that skirt the letter of  the rules. In these circumstances, more complicated regulations merely mean more billable hours for lawyers, more income for regulators switching sides, and more profits for derivatives traders.
The authors seem bewildered by the contradictions of these bailouts and investors who continue to invest in the large banks:
Why does any investment manager buy the stocks of banks that pay out very large portions of their earnings to their employees?
...Why do portfolio and pension-fund managers hope to receive impunity from their investors? Isn’t it obvious to investors that they are voluntarily transferring their clients’ funds to the pockets of bankers? Aren’t fund managers violating both fiduciary responsibilities and moral rules? Are they missing the only opportunity we have to discipline the banks and force them to compete for responsible risk-taking?
They don't understand why the alter of the market at which all capitalists worship is skewed to serve a narrow ruling class of financiers. The latter have concentrated so much wealth and power in their hands that they are now able to control the market, the economy, and the government (which they essentially own) to serve their appetite for more wealth and more power. Now, it is no longer just workers who are getting screwed as in earlier stages of capitalism, but the middle class is also, and they don't like it. 

This development poses a final contradiction for the ruling financial aristocracy: they are creating their own destruction--without the support of the middle class they are nothing.

Social Network Unionism

Click here to access article by Peter Hall-Jones from New Unionism Network.

There has been an explosion of networking technologies in the past five years and workers can and should take advantage of them. This piece surveys these techno-tools and shows how they can be used as a means of much greater collaboration among workers.
The implications of social network unionism are only just starting to dawn on many of us. All of a sudden, workers have the ability to build their own free, open networks, with or without the involvement of their union. They have begun to do so already, and we can expect a cumulative curve. Networks are popping up within workplaces, across organizations, and within occupations, industries, sectors and even across borders (especially in transnationals). These groups do not distinguish between members and non-members, or between full-time and part-time employees.

The Debt Crisis in the European Union: Has the crisis peaked yet? Part 6 of 7

Click here to access article by Eric Toussaint from the Committee for the Abolition Third World Debt.
The crisis is far from over. Even if we only consider the financial aspects, we must be aware that private banks have continued to play an extremely dangerous game which profits them as long as nothing goes wrong, but which is prejudicial to the majority of the population. The amount of bad assets on their balance-sheets is enormous. ...The risks are colossal and the policies adopted by the ECB, the EC and the member States of the EU will not solve anything – indeed quite the contrary.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

The Revolution Begins at Home: An Open Letter to Join the Wall Street Occupation

Click here to access article by Arun Gupta from The Indypendent. 
Instead of one to two thousand people a day joining in the occupation there needs to be tens of thousands of people protesting the fat cats driving Bentleys and drinking thousand-dollar bottles of champagne with money they looted from the financial crisis and then from the bailouts while Americans literally die on the streets.
Real democracy can be a messy affair, but there is no shortcut to it. The only alternative is what we have witnessed during the past 10,000 years (which is less than 2% of human existence)--class rule by priesthoods, warrior castes, landed aristocracies, and now capitalists.  

During the past 100 years this latest version of class rule has culminated in horrific global wars, crimes against humanity, economic collapses, and environmental destruction. If the evolutionary experiment of the human race is going to succeed depends on those of us now living. We have a choice. We can simply resign ourselves to class rule, indulge in a detached cynicism, descend into debt servitude, tolerate more wars, experience more police violence against citizens, and stand by and watch our planet become slowly uninhabitable.

Or we can stand up and say, "no more!. We will not allow you to destroy us and our planet. We will live with dignity, equality, and in harmony with each other with our universal home, our planet Earth."

People of the world, rise up on October 15th!

Click here to access article from OCTOBER 15TH – UNITED FOR #GLOBALCHANGE.
On October 15th people from all over the world will take to the streets and squares. From America to Asia, from Africa to Europe, people are rising up to claim their rights and demand a true democracy. Now it is time for all of us to join in a global non violent protest.

The ruling powers work for the benefit of just a few, ignoring the will of the vast majority and the human and environmental price we all have to pay. This intolerable situation must end.

United in one voice, we will let politicians, and the financial elites they serve, know it is up to us, the people, to decide our future.

We are not goods in the hands of politicians and bankers who do not represent us.

On October 15th, we will meet on the streets to initiate the global change we want. We will peacefully demonstrate, talk and organize until we make it happen.

It’s time for us to unite. It’s time for them to listen.


Also, see this to find out more about the new activist perspectives guiding this event and all the global protests.
The key of 15 Oct should not be just mobilizing people, and doing some actions simultaneously, but being conscious that the world is acting together, and therefore starting to build a network between all of us, for deciding all together, because that’s the only possible way, what the world should be. We know that the powers are global, that we live in a globalized world, and therefore our answer should be global too.

Worse Than the Cold War or Vietnam -- America Today

Click here to access article by Timothy Gatto from OpEd News.

Here is more evidence that ordinary Americans are waking up to a reality that is looking more and more like a nightmare. As long as the ruling capitalist class had plenty of largess and spread it around or gave people easy credit, most people put up with meaningless elections, endless wars, CIA adventures, more prisons and prisoners, more unemployed and homeless, etc.
Voting in America is a bad joke. Maybe local elections are legit, but Federal elections are a set-up sham to put in the best person that can provide corporate income. A corporation is not a person and does not deserve person-hood. If you examine the corporate model of any large corporation, most could be diagnosed as sociopaths, with interest not in community or the people working for them (except those at the top), with no other interest but the bottom line. That is no way to run a country. Some of these despicable psychopathic Defense Industries would love to have a big war with Russia or China? WTF?

Plutonomy update: “middle-class serfdom”

Click here to access article by Edward Fullbrook from Real-World Economics Review Blog.

The ruling capitalist class have depended upon its middle class: educators, scientists, media specialists, managers, and assorted professionals to sustain their rule in the US and in much of the world. As we see more articles like this appearing on middle class oriented blogs like the one posting this article, it seems that the middle class in advanced capitalist societies are increasingly losing their allegiance to capitalism and the class of people who are the main beneficiaries. Such a trend, if it continues, is a major threat to the system.

NATO's War on Libya is Directed against China: AFRICOM and the Threat to China's National Energy Security

Click here to access article by F. William Engdahl from Global Research. 

The author makes a good case for his thesis about the real purpose of NATO's Libyan adventure. Libya, if NATO's puppet government succeeds in suppressing opposition, will provide a much needed NATO base in the African continent to thwart China's access to oil. The Empire can tolerate no rivals. 

Typical of the many contradictions of capitalism, NATO countries were easily seduced into taking advantage of access to China's cheap labor supply in order to enrich the capitalist class; but this in turn also created an increasingly powerful and independent competitor for the diminishing supplies of fossil fuels.
Today China is the world's second largest importer of oil after the United States and the gap is rapidly closing.

The Debt Crisis in the European Union: CDS and rating agencies: Part 5 of 7

Click here to access article by Eric Toussaint from the Committee for the Abolition of Third World Debt.

Learn more about another creative scam of neo-liberal capitalists: credit default swaps (CDSs), and how they can and do wreck havoc on the economy of any country.
...right up until the AIG disaster and the collapse of Lehman Brothers, the IMF, the US Federal Reserve and the ECB repeatedly claimed that CDSs were a new product that offered excellent guarantees against risks (see the box on CDSs). Since then, their discourse has changed, but nothing, absolutely nothing, has been done to regulate the CDS market. Meanwhile, in view of the size of the phenomenon, CDSs constitute a huge time-bomb hanging over the international finance system. The fact is that CDS should be outlawed. 

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

A Weekend of Violent Arrests and Corralling Strengthen Resolve at Liberty Plaza

Click here to access article by Manny Jalonschi from The Indypendent. 

This provides more details on Saturday's violent attack on the Wall Street occupiers by city police, media coverage, and the strengthened resolve of the occupiers.

Protesters at Liberty Plaza speaking to The Indypendent this afternoon noted a substantial increase in attendance at their general assembly meetings, a direct democratic process that has become central to the protest community’s evolution and self-government. Their one demand has become an evolving series of inter-connected resolutions that they are still refining but generally focus on freeing the American political system from the corrupting grip of Big Finance.

Greek police beat 8-year old: “dad, why did they hit me?”

Click here to access article by Jérôme E. Roos from RoarMag.

The enforcers of capitalism are attacking people everywhere who protest the ravaging of their lives by this system.

Share Traders More Reckless Than Psychopaths, Study Shows

Click here to access article from Der Spiegel.

I think a more appropriate title for this article should have been, "Share Traders More Deviant Than Psychopaths, Study Shows."

I have often argued that the capitalist system is led by sociopaths and promotes sociopathic personalities. (Psychopathy equals sociopathy, or anti-social disorder, with the former term used beyond the US English speaking world.) This Swiss study found that stock brokers, including bankers, actually scored higher on sociopathic tests than do those already with a diagnosis of this personality disorder. 
Particularly shocking...was the fact that the bankers weren't aiming for higher winnings than their comparison group. Instead they were more interested in achieving a competitive advantage. Instead of taking a sober and businesslike approach to reaching the highest profit, "it was most important to the traders to get more than their opponents," Noll explained. "And they spent a lot of energy trying to damage their opponents."
Take a look at this stock trader and financial analyst for this type of personality disorder that even shocked the BBC staff:

These are the kind of people who shape our lives in so many ways and to our detriment--in fact, they rule over most of today's world. Like alcoholics they were not born that way, but had a predisposition toward such behavior. The capitalist system insures that those with sociopathic tendencies are rewarded, and thus, foster such personalities.

US corporate profits after tax 1990 to 2011

From Real-World Economics Review Blog.

It's clear why US economists continue to insist that we recovered from the recession. A graph is worth a thousand words.

The Money Masters: Behind the Global Debt Crisis

Click here to access article by Adrian Salbuchi from New Dawn. 

This Argentine author knows of what he writes because of his experiences with the banking crises in his country. His explanations about central banks and banks in general "creating money out of thin air" are very clear and helpful. However, like the folks at the American Monetary Institute, he regards this as the only problem with the capitalist system. (See this and this.) He doesn't understand that the system of capitalism, which is based on the private ownership and/or control of the economy, can never be a socially just system. The private control of money, which is the oil of any modern economy, gives a capitalist class enormous leverage in extracting their wealth. Were this scam eliminated, we would still have private control over the economy to serve private interests--not public interests.
As we assess some of the key components of today’s Global Financial, Currency and Banking Model in this article, readers will hopefully get a better understanding as to why we are all in such a crisis, and that it will tend to get much worse in the months and years to come.

Brainwashing Is Real and It's Really Not Therapy, Part 1 of 2

Click here to access article by Marcus Chatfield from OpEd News. 

The author provides a very good, documented exposé of a topic that receives almost no coverage in mainstream media.  The government refers to these "therapeutic" programs for troubled adolescents only as "residential treatment programs". Others have referred to them as a practice of coercive persuasion and thought reform, or simply brainwashing. On rare occasions reports filter through to the media that teenagers have died in these programs. Despite this, no real study of their safety and effectiveness has been carried out. The programs have their origins in research conducted by the CIA. Need I say more?
Physical and psychological abuse is built into many of these programs by design.   According to several different experts on the subject, the exhaustion and pressure that is induced by sleep deprivation, hunger, fatigue and emotional manipulation, "unfreezes" the psychological framework.   Through this orchestrated crisis,   a new identity is instilled by manipulating the environment and the emotions of the subject to an extreme degree until the "changed" mind of the subject has undergone "re-freezing."

Monday, September 26, 2011

Nobody Can Predict The Moment Of Revolution ( Occupy Wall Street )

 Uploaded onto You Tube by "ivaasks".

Solid Ground at Occupy Wall Street

Click here to access article Conor Tomás Reed from The Indypendent.

It's clear that the activists are drawing on the experiences of recent history from places all over the world to inform their strategies and tactics. 
Egypt’s lessons acutely demonstrate that liberated squares must become liberated workplaces, neighborhoods, and eventually cities. This is exactly Liberty Plaza’s aim—not to be a self-contained, pre-figurative mini-society, but a decisive tipping point in the belly of the economic beast that can collaborate with this widening network to transform global society altogether.
Nathan Schneider's report from the same source describes the escalation of police violence on Saturday against the demonstrators and the typical coverage in mainstream media.
Around 3 p.m., near Fifth Avenue and 12th Street, the police attacked. Unrolling plastic orange barriers, they isolated a crowd of marchers, along with the reporters following them, and began mass arrests for blocking traffic. This was a brutal process. Caught on cameras were scenes of one protester being dragged by her hair, others being slammed into the pavement, and a group of women, netted and helpless, being downed by pepper spray. In total, police say they arrested 80 people. With not enough room for them in vans, many were taken away in regular city buses.
While the above report focused on the dramatic events on Saturday, Chaz Valenza from OpEd News reports on a more benign day Sunday when participants were doing house keeping chores, reviewing past events, and discussing more legal hassles.

A Voice of Reason Amid the Madness

Click here to access article by Heather Digby Parton from Al Jazeera.
...Warren's message is a potent one, expressing progressive values in terms that are almost intoxicating to the base of the Democratic Party, hungry as they are for someone to take up the cause of the American middle class, workers and families who are being unbearably squeezed and yet asked to give even more - even as the wealthy fatuously declare themselves to be "job creators" and therefore absolved of any duty to pay their fair share.
Elizabeth Warren does, indeed, speak reason to madness, but nonetheless, her voice will continue to be marginalized within the Democratic party. Why? Because the ruling class has abandoned the middle class and all of America except for the industrial-financial-military complex which serves the Empire as enforcer and a huge profit center. Her policies are only progressive in the sense of a national capitalist orientation. But, national capitalism has grown up into global capitalism and the elites who control this new system, and profit from it, view national boundaries as barriers to their profit extracting enterprises. 

The Need For Monetary Reform

Click here to access article from the American Monetary Institute.
Money has value because of skilled people, resources, and infrastructure, working together in a supportive social and legal framework. Money is the indispensable lubricant that lets them “run.” It is not tangible wealth in itself, but a power to obtain wealth. Money is an abstract social power based in law; and whatever government accepts in payment of taxes will be money. Money’s value is not created by the private corporations that now control it.
This Institute is focused on bringing the issuance of money under complete government control:
...the money issuing power should never be alienated from democratically elected government and placed ambiguously into private hands as it is in America in the Federal Reserve System today.
I see this as a worthy objective, but there are several problems I see with this limited objective. First, bringing the issuance of money under full government control does not in the least provide for a genuine "democratically elected government." A privately owned and controlled economy cannot provide for a meaningful democracy. 

An economy supports a society with all their material needs. Hence, it is a vital part of any society. To have an economy controlled by private parties clearly functions to undermine any kind of genuine democracy. Clearly, this is obvious from the history of capitalist countries during the past 300 years.

Capitalist rule is just another form of class rule that American revolutionaries thought they had defeated back in 1776. Unfortunately, the Revolution was a sham. It was immediately undermined by the new class of capitalists and financiers led by Alexander Hamilton and Robert Morris who merely wanted to take control from the British Crown so that they could exploit the vast resources of this continent. Because labor is always need to create wealth, they imported large numbers of slaves from Africa and cleared the common lands in Europe of its farmers. (Read The Great Transformation by Karl Polanyi.) As Charles Beard, the noted historian and political scientist of the early 20th century wrote in his seminal work, An Economic Interpretation of the Constitution:
Instead of being a document drawn up by patriotic men for the protection of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, the [US] Constitution was the work of consolidated economic groups--...property interests....
But, I agree completely with the Institute's objective of bringing the issuance of our money under complete government control, but we must not stop there. We must bring the whole economy under genuine democratic control.

Hothouse Earth

Click here to access article by Robert Kunzig from National Geographic.
Around 56 million years ago a mysterious surge of carbon into the atmosphere sent global temperatures soaring. In a geologic eyeblink life was forever changed. ...Today the evolutionary consequences of that distant carbon spike are all around us; in fact they include us. Now we ourselves are repeating the experiment. 

Humanity falls deeper into ecological debt: study

Click here to access article from AFP carried in The West Australian. 
Humankind will slip next week into ecological debt, having gobbled up in less then nine months more natural resources than the planet can replenish in a year, researchers said Tuesday. 
Isn't it interesting that we have to go to an obscure Australian online newspaper to find the results of this research whose origin was from a French news service? Then, I find that the research was done by the Global Footprint Network. Guess where that is located? Oakland, California! Isn't the Internet wonderful? Anyway, check out their report.

I usually expect The Huffington Post to cover reports like this; but only after a search of their website, I found this article which seems to only incidentally refer to the report. Could this be because Huffington Post is now owned by AOL

Likewise, I did a Google search on "Global Footprint Network" to see if I could find other online services carrying this report. I found that the report was carried in a fairly obscure environmental site called Green Living, a Pakistani site called Dawn, and a site somewhere in the province of Ontario, Canada called Northumberland View 

Doesn't the above illustrate how much of our news is controlled by a ruling class whose sole object is profit, and who don't want you know anything about the ongoing destruction of the planet that their activities are causing??

We have had warnings about this destructive trend since the 1970's; but our addicted capitalist ruling class have consistently obscured and contradicted such findings and the result is that we continue to allow this class and their system to destroy our planet and ourselves.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

How to Kill a Country--and the Euro

Click here to access article from Research Institute for European and American Studies.

The most extreme consequences of neo-liberal policies are now being played out in Europe with several countries deeply in debt to international capitalists. 

The use of debt to exploit people may in the end threaten the very foundations of capitalist rule. In other words, the international class of capitalists have, in their greed, pursued policies that are resulting in the perpetual servitude of major populations to this class; and the consequences of these policies, in turn, threaten their beloved system. This class of exploiters both want their debts paid off and want their system to continue. That is, "they want their cake and eat it, too." As people wake up and realize what is happening, they refuse to be placed into indefinite servitude--humans just did not evolve that way--and it is unlikely that capitalists can have both.
It’s official. The Europeans have lost it completely concerning the sovereign debt crisis and what to do about it. Herr Schäuble, in charge of the EU kommandantur [headquarters], is now hinting that the agreement about a second Greek bailout, reached on July 21st, may not go ahead as planned. Greece is already being put through the hoop by the creditors over the first bailout, agreed in 2010, since the Papandreou regime has disastrously failed in everything it promised to do, while the country is disintegrating thanks to a catastrophic depression caused directly by the Troika-imposed insane austerity that turned, not unexpectedly, into a poisoned chalice which is killing millions of Greek families.

‘Our future is not for sale’: The Chilean Student Movement Against Neoliberalism

Click here to access article by Manuel Larrabure and Carlos Torchia from Socialist Project (Canada).

As student-led uprisings have been occurring in the streets and squares of London, Madrid, Belfast, Athens and Barcelona, Chilean students are having a major impact in their country and on many activists in other countries in Latin America.
It is clear...that the Chilean student movement has become a major development for the left not only in Chile, but in Latin America as a whole. The students are presenting one of the leading neoliberal administrations in the region with a major political challenge. Crucially, they have managed to do so by building their own power outside of pre-established political institutions. Importantly, the movement has done so without simply avoiding the state, but rather through direct confrontation with it, and with a demand for its transformation and democratization. At a time when the electoral road to social transformation in the region appears blocked, this development holds much potential.
In highly class stratified societies, it is often much easier to see how ruling classes function to keep their power, wealth, and privileges. The writers of this article touch on many of these methods: placate the dissenters by advocacy of ineffective reforms and change of personnel, use of co-optation, infiltration, agent provocateurs, intimidation in the forms of cuts to education, threats of state violence, and finally, direct police violence.

It appears that this student lead movement is countering with some of the most creative and advanced forms of political actions and organization. 

Too Many Messages and Only One Facebook Page: April 6th Movement in Post-Mubarak Egypt

Click here to access article by Susannah Vila from Technosociology. 

I am posting this article to assist in bringing interested observers up-to-date as to what has been occurring among activists in Egypt since the demonstrations earlier this year. 
The fact that it wasn’t hard to find someone in Tahrir who would express disillusionment with A6Y is indicative of the larger challenge that he and colleagues face today: after the political sphere is broken open by uprising, how do you maintain and build upon support among the highly-wired crowd while simultaneously recruiting offline Egyptians?

On Corporate Power Who owns American universities?

Click here to access article by Michael Barker from Ceasefire. 
Social incompetence and an individualistic mentality are acquired in the competitive educational system. Collective action, as opposed to personal status climbing, becomes more difficult as a consequence. Cynicism is learned from doing meaningless assignments and busy work. This serves to negate any serious political thought. As long as the worker does not take himself seriously and is cynical about his world, it does not matter much what his politics are.
This article, although very important, only skims the surface of how the capitalist ruling class has taken control of education in the US, particularly higher education. But then, there are references to source materials where one can learn more. Although not addressed in the article, I am particularly interested in the phenomenon of "endowed professorships", also known as "endowed chairs" where foundations sponsor professors in our institutions of higher learning.