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, April 7, 2012

Pentagon Produces Satellite Photos of 1994 Rwanda Genocide

Click here to access article by Keith Harmon Snow from his website. (modified on 4-8-2012)

Because there are so few independent journalists who cover African affairs, the events in this area provide great potential to be mis-reported and manipulated by Empire interests. This journalist has done so much to uncover the real facts behind the misinformation supplied by the Empire's mainstream media. 

The only problem I have with his writings is that he tries to accomplish too much in any one article. Thus, he tends to go into enormous detail that gets in the way of key insights and themes. To get his information across to internet users, it would be far better if he wrote separate articles on various subtopics and with summary reports that included links to them. 

What I got from this article is that Western mainstream media has grossly distorted actual events in Rwanda, especially the events surrounding the Rwanda massacre in 1994. Snow's reporting shows that in reality it was a civil war with atrocities on both sides. But, given their favorite principle, "never let a crisis go to waste", political operatives of the Empire stepped into the fray--if they didn't actually instigate it--and backed a US trained military leader to serve their interests.
Contrary to popular propaganda, the sound bite claiming that the RPF [Rwandan Patriotic Front headed by Kagame, formerly the Rwandan Patriotic Army] 'stopped the genocide against Tutsis' in Rwanda is a gross mischaracterization of the nature of genocide versus civil war in Rwanda. It is also a sound bite that deflects attention from the RPF role in mass atrocities in Rwanda and Congo. The Kagame regime is able to get away with anything it wants--arrest and torture opponents, persecute refugees everywhere, plunder minerals from Congo --because President Paul Kagame has provided the Pentagon its biggest, centralized base for the Pentagon's U.S. Africa Command, AFRICOM.  

Friday, April 6, 2012

Jobs Act 2012 a Recipe for Fraud

Click here to access article and script from The Real News.

Paul Jay of The Real News interviews Professor Bill Black, who is clearly no anti-capitalist, as he explains the JOBS Act which is really about weakening existing regulations and providing more opportunities for the One Percent to engage in more fraudulent business practices that have already created so much havoc with the economy.

This bill was diabolically packaged  in an acronym for "Jumpstart Our Business Startups" Act in order to fool ordinary Americans into believing that their government and Obama really are concerned about promoting jobs. And, of course, the One Percent's mainstream media coverage of the bill is compliantly playing along with this ruse by supplying superficial and mostly postive reports of the passage of the bill and Obama's signing. Most TV coverage I've seen just portrays Obama's celebratory remarks as he signs the bill. (See this from CNN.) A survey of other media outlets reveals mostly very positive reports with occasionally very brief mention of some some concerns about the bill. See this, this, and this.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Mineral resources are behind U.S. interest in Africa

Click here to access article by Nile Bowie from End the Lie. 

This outstanding article prompted by recent events in Africa, especially in the resource rich central Africa, frames the events within a context of rivalry between China and the Empire for control of, and access to, the valuable resources found in this area. The author provides solid references to support his analysis. 

No doubt the recent notorious film entitled "Kony 2012" was a carefully crafted part of this overall Empire strategy to gain public support for the official introduction of military forces into central Africa.

#Occupied: Reports From the Front Lines

Click here to access article by Jennifer Sacks and SIUKittyPie from The Occupied Wall Street Journal. 

This provides a current survey of Occupy movement activities that the One Percent's mainstream media has stopped covering. Contained in the article are numerous links for you to learn more about specific actions of activists and suppression activities of the One Percent's enforcers. For example:
#The National Lawyers Guild, along with several other groups, is releasing documents that they say show that the Department of Homeland Security had a strong hand in the coordinated crackdown on Occupy groups nationwide.

Media Black-Out of King Assassination Anniversary War Promotion Media's Future Prosecution

Click here to access article by Jay Janson from OpEd News. 

With time running out, I was only able to scan this; however it appears to offer a lot of information regarding his assassination on April 4, 1968 by agents working for the government in order to shut him up. An excellent book on this subject is An Act of State by William Pepper. 

Remember: the ruling class always writes our history to reflect their interests. We must constantly be on guard to salvage our history for future generations.

Greece: Pensioner commits suicide on Athens Syntagma Square, the 2nd suicide within 14 hours

Click here to access article from Eagainst. 

Capitalism claims another desperate victim in Greece, but most Greeks are able and willing to fight back. 
...demonstrations are called all over the country and the slogan “We won’t let Capitalism kill us” is being raised everywhere.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Welcome to the New Third World of Energy, the U.S.

Click here to access article by Michael Klare at TomDispatch. (You may wish to scroll down to the article and skip the introduction.) 

The author warns us that US oil industry has big plans to exploit shale oil and gas within the US and will use their considerable influence and money to defeat any opposition. Given that the capitalist imperative for growth requires ever increasing amounts of energy and the ruling class addiction to the system which provides them with so much power and profit, it certainly looks like we are in for a herculean battle that will severely test the mettle of North American activists who insist that we maintain a sustainable environment and healthy ecosystem. It seems to me that this is shaping up to be an epic war for our future that could have wide ranging consequences: from revolutionary advances to nightmarish dystopias.

My only problem with his article is that he seems to suggest that Obama could be our ally in this war with statements like this:
To achieve these objectives, the API, which claims to represent more than 490 oil and natural gas companies, has launched a multimillion-dollar campaign to sway the 2012 elections, dubbed “Vote 4 Energy.” While describing itself as nonpartisan, the API-financed campaign seeks to discredit and marginalize any candidate, including President Obama, who opposes even the mildest version of its drill-anywhere agenda.
In his article he has made reference to an excellent New York Times article, but seems to overlook their factual statement which suggests otherwise:
More recently, with gasoline prices rising and another election looming, Mr. Obama has struck a different chord. He has opened new federal lands and waters to drilling, trumpeted increases in oil and gas production and de-emphasized the challenges of climate change. On Thursday, he said he supported expedited construction of the southern portion of the proposed Keystone XL oil pipeline from Canada.
His apparent opposition to the whole Keystone pipeline will rapidly evaporate after the elections. Then, of course, there are all the other promises he made during the 2008 campaign and ignored after being elected. And, because he has served the ruling class of the One Percent so well during his first term, they will undoubtedly make sure he wins a second term.

Under Obama, the assault on the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has continued with the firing of staff who objected to the favorable treatment of corporations and who reported violations of agency policies. In the following 2:23m video from Real News Network about a protest in front of the EPA, we see evidence of the war that is forming between environmentalists and the new push from Big Oil to fully exploit shale oil and gas within the US.

The Entrepreneur’s Story

Click here to access article by Daniel Borgström from Dissident Voice. 

We all need some humor in our lives, and today this piece gave me quite a chuckle. 

'Celebration Capitalism' and the Real Cost of the Olympics

Click here to access article by Jules Boykoff from Common Dreams.

Regarding the upcoming London Olympics the author illustrates the principle that a ruling class and the system from which it derives its power puts its stamp on every significant institution in that society. He also shows how the One Percent not only benefits from their disasters, but also from their celebrations.
...while disaster capitalism eviscerates the state, celebration capitalism manipulates state actors as partners, pushing economics rooted in so-called public-private partnerships. All too often these public-private partnerships are lopsided: the public pays and the private profits. In a bait and switch that's swaddled in bonhomie, the public takes the risks and private groups scoop up the rewards. 

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Ten Myths About Capitalism

Click here to access article by Lubov Lulko from Global Research. 

Overall (I have some problem with the phrasing of #10) I think this is a very good list of the key myths in which citizens are indoctrinated so that they will unquestioningly function to serve the needs of the One Percent ruling class (capitalist class). It is one of the purposes of my blog to run articles that illustrate how false these beliefs are.

As a ruling class, the One Percent has control over all subsystems in society and thus is able to propagate these myths throughout all institutions. This is a very effective indoctrination arrangement because it means total immersion in these beliefs throughout every facet of the lives of ordinary people. To be sure, the ruling capitalist class could use, and has used (e.g. Nazi Germany and fascist Italy), police state methods to enforce compliant behavior, but indoctrination programs are so much more cost effective. 

With never-ending wars and the recent economic collapse of the economy, such beliefs are increasingly being questioned by ordinary citizens, some even are engaging in protests that are threatening to the One Percenters and their system of capitalism. Hence, we have seen the growth of prisons, deterioration of our civil rights, fear campaigns about Muslim terrorists and immigrants, police state methods used to crush protests, surveillance of our private communications by government agencies in collaboration with corporations, etc.

Hired Guns on Astroturf: How to Buy and Sell School Reform

Click here to access article by Joanne Barkan from Dissent.

This fairly lengthy piece offers a study in how the One Percent's money is corrupting any local control of educational policies. This has in great measure been facilitated by the Supreme Court's 2010 ruling that eliminated corporate contributions to political candidates. It also offers a broader illustration of how capitalist ruling classes function behind the facade of "democratic" practices to serve their class interests while fooling the 99 Percent into thinking that public policies are democratically determined.

Cell Phone Location Tracking Public Records Request

Click here to access article from American Civil Liberties Union.
In August 2011, 35 ACLU affiliates filed over 380 public records requests with state and local law enforcement agencies to ask about their policies, procedures and practices for tracking cell phones.
What we have learned is disturbing. While virtually all of the over 200 police departments that responded to our request said they track cell phones, only a tiny minority reported consistently obtaining a warrant and demonstrating probable cause to do so.
I noticed two facts here. First, nearly a half of all police agencies contacted did not respond to ACLU's inquiry. They obviously and correctly feel that they don't have to respond to public inquiries. They are perfectly aware of who they are working for--the One Percent and not the 99 Percent who, according to official mythology, they are supposedly working for.

Second, I noticed that the article contains evidence to suggest that police and cell phone corporations, which are owned by the One Percent, are working in parallel to create this new surveillance state of affairs.
Cell phone companies have worsened the lack of transparency by law enforcement by hiding how long they store location data. Cell phone companies store customers' location data for a very long time. According to the U.S. Department of Justice, Sprint keeps location tracking records for 18-24 months, and AT&T holds onto them "since July 2008," suggesting they are stored indefinitely. Yet none of the major cell phone providers disclose to their customers the length of time they keep their customers' cell tracking data. Mobile carriers owe it to their customers to be more forthright about what they are doing with our data.

Colorado farms planning for dry spell losing auction bids for water to fracking projects

Click here to access article by Bruce Finley from Denver Post. 

The author points to a local problem that is likely to show up in other areas of the US. Securing energy resources will likely compete in other drouth stricken areas with growing food. I think we can expect to see rising prices for food.

Arctic sea ice may have passed crucial tipping point

Click here to access article by Fred Pearce from New Scientist. 

In contrast to the headline, recent research strongly indicates that Arctic ice has passed the tipping point. It appears to me that we will be seeing similar headlines in the decades ahead as the Earth's ecology is increasingly impacted by human use of fossil fuels and other unsustainable practices. However, you will be assured by the One Percent's media that we must continue on this path in order to create more jobs. There is no alternative. (Sarcasm)

Monday, April 2, 2012

Political Imaginaries in Saudi Arabia: Revolutionaries without A Revolution

Click here to access article by Rosie Bsheer from Jadaliyya. 

Here is a report on a subject which is totally suppressed in US mainstream media--anti-regime protests and activities in Saudi Arabia. I was particularly drawn to this statement:
US-trained and armed security forces have been dispatched more thoroughly throughout the country to thwart any potential signs of public gatherings or protests.
Clearly it is to the US security forces that oppressive regimes look to for training to suppress any popular opposition. Likewise, I am sure that US security forces have learned much from Israeli security agencies in their suppression of Palestinians. 

However, in the US the enforcers of the One Percent are curbed to some extent by what is left of Constitutional legal defenses and media reporting. Hence, during the past decades we have witnessed ongoing attacks on these institutions with the result that they offer diminished protection on our ability to oppose the ruling class of the One Percent. It seems clear to me that we must counter this development by organizing our own forms of security and our own media.

John Stoehr: The myth of freedom in the land of the free [Part 1 of 2]

Click here to access article by John Stoehr from Al Jazeera.

The author addresses the current militarization of local police forces to suppress any opposition to the rule of the One Percent. Thus, there is no longer a need for the current ruling class to call in the Army or the National Guard to suppress dissent.
...the harder they [Occupier protestors] pushed, the harder they were pushed back - with violence. Protesters met with police wearing body armour, face shields, helmets and batons; police legally undermined Americans' right to assemble freely with "non-lethal" weaponry like tear gas, rubber bullets and sonic grenades. There was no need for the president to call in the army. An army, as Mayor Bloomberg quipped, was already there. 

John Stoehr: Selling war from 1917 to 2012 [Part 2 of 2]

Click here to access article by John Stoehr from Al Jazeera.

Concluding his two part essay, the author continues with historical illustrations of ruling class management of protest using propaganda--and when that fails--the application of violence against protestors. In addition to militarizing local police forces, the present ruling class has developed elaborate systems of surveillance to track protestors.
The US government has spent about $635bn over the past decade militarising local law enforcement. That...includes "tanks and drones, robot bomb detectors, grenade launchers, Tasers, and most of all, interlinked video surveillance cameras and information databases".

Beneath the Pavement – The Historical Struggle of the Commons

Click here to access article by Robin Banks from Portland (Oregon) Occupier. 

The author writes about the historical struggle over the control of physical space especially since the rise of the capitalist class who are always interested in using space to increase their profits. Nowadays, they want to control public spaces to suppress protest. But, resistance activists are learning and growing, and they are becoming aware of new kinds of "spaces" that could cause the downfall of capitalism.
The threat to the system is two fold. By actively participating in reshaping the commons, those engaged in resistance have opened up space, both in thought and action, that encourages others to do the same, challenging people’s roles as spectators, and helping to develop their capacity to become actors in the public sphere and the social struggle. The more serious threat is the fear of disruption, the break to the monotonous routine that is vital to the functioning of the machine. 

Man whose WMD lies led to 100,000 deaths confesses all

Click here to access article by Jonathan Owen from The Independent (UK).
"Curveball", the Iraqi defector who fabricated claims about Iraq's weapons of mass destruction, smiles as he confirms how he made the whole thing up. It was a confidence trick that changed the course of history, with Rafid Ahmed Alwan al-Janabi's lies used to justify the Iraq war.
It often takes a decade or more to find the truth about all the lies that have been used by the political operatives of the One Percent to justify their wars and their crimes against humanity. The gullibility of ordinary people to ruling class propaganda is an ongoing problem for any revolutionary movement. I think it is rooted in the long period of childhood dependency that humans require to mature. Added to this fact is the use of the period by ruling classes to indoctrinate children, most effectively in educational institutions, with their beliefs and values, and above all, respect for authority. This prepares ordinary people for an adulthood in which they too often believe what authorities tell them about reality.

“Strong” Links of Manmade Heat, Rainfall Extremes: Study

Click here to access article by Andrew Freedman from Climate Central. 
Following on the heels of the March heat wave, which was one of the most remarkable extreme weather events on record in the U.S., are two new scientific papers that discuss the relationship between extreme weather events and global climate change.

Sunday, April 1, 2012

The Massacre of the Afghan 17 and the Obama Cover-Up

Click here to access article by James Petras from Canadian Dimension. 
...Obama [regime] has developed his entire new counter-insurgency strategy centred on the easy entry and bloody exits of US Special Forces targeting over 75 countries. The Special Forces figure prominently in Obama’s military preparations for Syria and Iran, which have been developed at the behest of his Zionist overlords.

In the final analysis, the entire imperial military apparatus of the Obama regime, while formidable on paper, depends on the ‘Special Operations’ formations. As such, they are the centrepiece of the new imperial warfare, developed as a response to the demands for reduced ground forces, budgetary constraints and growing domestic discontent. Their actions are designed to leave no witnesses and no embarrassments. They may be the butchers of children, women and unarmed civilians but they are the White House’s butchers.

Obama with his grandmother, Madelyn Dunham, in Hawaii in 1979 during his high school graduation.

Obama, having been essentially raised by his white banker grandmother who enrolled him in an exclusive private school in Hawaii, was socialized in the values and norms of the One Percent--use of any means necessary to serve their interests of power and profit and the system which delivers these. With his black skin and fine rhetorical skills, he has served the One Percent well by confusing ordinary people into thinking that he really did represent "change". But, that is the same old formula used by most ruling classes since they began about 10,000 years ago: deceive your subjects into believing that you are serving their needs.

See also this Australian news video which features interviews with Afghans at the scene of the massacre:

Trayvon Martin and Structural Racism

Paul Jay interviews Glen Ford on this recent tragedy and the continuing racist nature of American society. The One Percent ruling class, like all ruling classes, fosters conflict between ordinary Americans in order to distract attention away from themselves, their destructive policies and actions. Because of so many protests regarding the Martin murder now going on across the US, it appears to me that this "divide and rule" strategy is not going to work very well this time. (Note: in the interview reference is made to "Stand-your-ground law".) 


An excellent source for the latest information on this murder, I recommend that you follow an article link in Mother Jones that is being continuously updated.

US persecutes Manning in bid to smash WikiLeaks

Click here to access article by Ash Pemberton from Green Left (Australia). 

The world's 99 Percent are waking up to the fact that the Empire is not only at war with the 99 Percent in Afghanistan, Syria, Iraq, Libya, etc, it is at war with the 99 Percent everywhere in the world. Heroes like Manning, Assange, and all the whistle-blowers who reveal the nefarious secrets of the Empire's war criminals and profiteers are being celebrated all across the globe. We must support our heroes. 
At the same time as US authorities are pushing ahead with their prosecution of Manning, the alleged whistleblower has been nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize by Icelandic parliamentarians.