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 27, 2013

Everything Is Rigged: The Biggest Price-Fixing Scandal Ever

Click here to access article by Matt Taibbi from Rolling Stone.

Taibbi does a very good job of demystifying the various scams perpetrated by international banksters who largely rule the world. The scams involve the use of obscure financial instruments they invented plus old-fashioned collusion to rob us--the people all over the world. We don't notice this because of the hidden nature of their scams and the fact that their operations have mostly a limited impact on each of us. 

These practices illustrate, once again, the widespread corruption that has infected the capitalist world. Instant communication technologies has created unlimited possibilities for such scams, and our capitalist masters cannot resist the temptations to take advantage of them. One can only wonder where this will all end. 
All of these stories collectively pointed to the same thing: These banks, which already possess enormous power just by virtue of their financial holdings – in the United States, the top six banks, many of them the same names you see on the Libor and ISDAfix panels, own assets equivalent to 60 percent of the nation's GDP – are beginning to realize the awesome possibilities for increased profit and political might that would come with colluding instead of competing. Moreover, it's increasingly clear that both the criminal justice system and the civil courts may be impotent to stop them, even when they do get caught working together to game the system.
The latter sentence suggests a naive understanding of how political power works in a capitalist system. One must think of  this system as a coin: on one side there is an extreme concentration of wealth and "ownership" in a few hands, on the other side is political power concentrated mostly in the same hands. It is precisely this relationship that makes any pretense of democracy the greatest scam of all.

The Terror of Capitalism

Click here to access article by Vijay Prashad from CounterPunch.

Prashad provides an in-depth report on the collapse of the garment factory in Bangladesh and its significance. It is a graphic, tragic example of neoliberalism's exploitation of working people that is a major building block in the edifice of the capitalist new world order in the 21st century. 

Economic enterprises built from the sweat and toil of workers and slaves in the West, but "owned" by a small elite, have found their way to areas of the world where even cheaper labor can toil under worse conditions for enterprises under contract by corporations, thereby shielding the latter of responsibility. Meanwhile, the sons and daughters of earlier generations of Western workers are left to work in low paying service jobs and going into debt to maintain some semblance of a respectable lifestyle according to the defining standards of Western media.
In the Atlantic world, meanwhile, self-absorption over the wars on terror and on the downturn in the economy prevent any genuine introspection over the mode of life that relies upon debt-fueled consumerism at the expense of workers in Dhaka. Those who died in the Rana building are victims not only of the malfeasance of the sub-contractors, but also of twenty-first century globalisation.

Friday, April 26, 2013

US Unveils Iraq WMD "Curveball-Style" Lies Vs. Syria

Click here to access article by Tony Cartalucci from his blog Land Destroyer.
 The last two weeks have seen a series of victories for the Syrian Army across Syria. It appears that 2 full companies of so-called "Free Syrian Army" fighters have been annihilated near Damascus, while government forces have restored order in parts of Homs and along the previously porous Lebanese-Syrian border.
Time has run out for the West, and it appears that they are desperately seeking any excuse to rescue their failing proxy war.

Everyone’s Talking about “False Flags … Isn’t that Another Bogus Historical Conspiracy Theory?

Click here to access article from Washington's Blog.

The author provides an in-depth review of the use of term throughout history, and you may be surprised by the frequency that this tactic has been used by elites to turn events in their favor.

Doubters need to read this.

The United States of Subterfuge

Click here to access article by Larry Pinkney from Intrepid Report
Barack Obama and his Democrat and Republican accomplices know full well that an unfettered and informed free flow of information would spell doom for the avaricious blood sucking corporate elite. Thus, the corporate-government and its propaganda arm—the corporate-stream media—are determined to keep the masses of everyday people in a state of lethargy, ignorance, and fear.

Are Genes Patentable? An Insider's Review of the ACLU's Supreme Court Argument on Gene Patenting

Click here to access article by Lenora M. Lapidus from American Civil Liberties Union

The ownership of property that can be used to extract wealth from other citizens has always been a cornerstone of capitalism, and it doesn't matter to the people who own such property if this arrangement causes widespread suffering in any form to the rest of humanity. People with sociopathic tendencies are attracted to this system and the ownership of such property which ultimately gives them and their heirs enormous wealth, and with wealth comes the even more deleterious effect of enormous power. Such people constitute a socioeconomic class, also known as the One Percent or capitalists, who work daily to preserve and enhance their system.

In recent decades we've seen this class enter the world of biotechnology in search of more things to "own". Although the question in the title of this article is a fundamental one, it seems a little late to pose it. The courts controlled by the One Percent have already ruled that life forms created by tinkering with the basic ingredients (genes and DNA) of non-human life forms can be owned, so why not those of humans? The only thing that this class of people regard as sacred is property.

EPIC v. NSA - Cybersecurity Authority

Click here to access document from Electronic Privacy Information Center

This non-profit public research center has since 1994 focused its efforts on securing transparency in government and fighting against invasions of citizen privacy by government agencies. This document reports on its recent efforts. 

Notice the ongoing resistance by government agencies, most egregiously by the National Security Agency (NSA), to keep what it is doing secret with regard to accessing private information. NSA is the prime mover behind efforts to enact the CISPA bill which would streamline their ability to collect private information on citizens. 

It is clear to me that the One Percent, whose government we live under, greatly fear that we of the 99 Percent will wake up one day to realize that we are living in a police state; and, as a result, will forget about shopping and begin to engage in acts of rebellion. They, the One Percent ruling class, have already established militarized local police forces controlled largely by the Department of Homeland Security; and now they want to complement this by snooping into our internet activities and information on us held by corporations.

See also this regarding collusion between the Dept. of Defense and corporations regarding access to personal information.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

The Boston lockdown and the Bill of Rights

Click here to access article by Tom Carter from World Socialist Web Site.
With the implementation of a state of military siege against the population of Boston last week, the American ruling class has crossed a historical, legal and political Rubicon. The die is cast and the sun is setting on the democratic forms of rule that have existed in the United States for the past two centuries.
What history will remember as most significant about the events in Boston will not be the bombing near the marathon’s finish line or the perpetrators or their motives. What will be remembered instead will be the unprecedented military lockdown of an entire major American city, with military vehicles in the streets and heavily armed soldiers going house to house—tromping through living rooms, bedrooms and kitchens, staring down their assault rifles at terrified, barefoot families in their pajamas.
What the author does not seem to understand is that the Bill of Rights was tacked on the original Constitution because of widespread opposition by people in the original 13 semi-autonomous states of the United States. The newly formed capitalist class needed to add "a spoonful of sugar" in order to get their property centered constitution ratified by the states. Their promotion of this constitution was essentially a coup engineered by the major property holders of the states while attending a convention that was only supposed to be modifying the Articles of Confederation.  

They knew perfectly well that under their constitution that they could control a powerful centralized government from any democratic inference from below, and therefore they need not worry about the amendments. To illustrate how seriously the "founding fathers" took these amendments, bear in mind that only nine years after the Constitution went into effect they passed the Sedition Act which made it a crime...
To write, print, utter or publish, or cause it to be done, or assist in it, any false, scandalous, and malicious writing against the government of the United States, or either House of Congress, or the President, with intent to defame, or bring either into contempt or disrepute, or to excite against either the hatred of the people of the United States, or to stir up sedition, or to excite unlawful combinations against the government, or to resist it....

Government giving AT&T, others secret immunity from wiretap laws

Click here to access article by Natasha Lennard from Salon.

This piece shows that the ruling One Percent, who operate what passes as "our government", is already doing what CISPA would make much easier for them to do--spy on us. In other words, our masters want to streamline surveillance over our private lives by enacting CISPA, but if that law fails once again, they will spy on us anyway--it will be just much less convenient. 
One of the major privacy concerns fueling opposition to CISPA is that the legislation would permit the private sector to acquire and search sensitive data relating to U.S. citizens between corporations and the government. However, according to government documents obtained by the Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC), such personal data sharing and surveillance is well underway already, while CISPA is yet to come up for a Senate vote.

Postcard From The End of America: Los Angeles

Click here to access article by Linh Dinh on Intrepid Report.

The author is visiting parts of the US that corporate agents will not allow you to see on TV, but yet a growing population are living like this. In his visit to LA he offers some graphic descriptions of Americans he encounters.
It was now light, and I had made my way to Skid Row. Nearly five thousand homeless people live here. On sidewalk after sidewalk, they have set up their crude dwellings made up mostly of tarps and cardboard. I saw shopping carts all over, and a few bicycles. Bodies lay on cardboard, bedding or sometimes just concrete, but trash was generally confined to trash cans. There was a commotion at 5th and Gladys, with cops and an ambulance, and people were speculating that it might have been a stabbing.
In another report he offers some snapshots of his visit to Oakland, like this one:
I saw a young woman, draped with a thin comforter, who’d crouch down often to pick something from the ground. At first I thought she was scavenging cigarette butts, then I realized she was picking up anything that wasn’t stuck to the sidewalk, a tiny scrap of paper, a dry leaf, a match stump, a candy wrapper… Not content to pick up the pieces, she’d kneel down on the concrete to arrange them, to give them order and meaning.

The Boston Marathon Explosions: A Convenient Moral Panic

Click here to access article by Colin Todhunter posted on CounterCurrents
In 2006, former  US  military commander and CIA boss General Petraeus said the  US  strategy is to conduct a war of perceptions continuously through the news media. People like McCain are the foot soldiers in such a war and hope that the public mindset can be manipulated with propaganda about US national security interests, perceived military successes and fear about Islamic extremism.

History of the Machine Gun

Click here if you wish to access the source of following 3:08m video from Real News Network.

Here you will view actual film footage of an historical incident not likely covered in your eduction, or if it was, it was a highly sanitized version. This is only one incident illustrating a common practice throughout US history: the use of the machine guns and other weapons to intimidate working people who used the only weapon they had against oppressive company policies and practices: withholding their labor. This occurred in the Columbine Mine massacre in 1927, and in many general strikes such as those which occurred in Seattle in 1919, in the 1930s in San Francisco and Minneapolis, and many other places.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Orwell does America

Click here to access article by Pepe Escobar from Asia Times Online.

Based on reports from his Boston followers, Escobar cites more discrepancies, inconsistencies, and other strange happenings in an event in which mainstream media managers have no doubts about: its a clear cut case of Muslims engaging in terrorism against Americans. Ergo: we must increase police state measures, remove more civil liberties, and increase surveillance on citizens (CISPA).
Welcome to Police State USA - where at least everyone still has the right to go out shopping. For now.

Anti-Fracking Activist Sandra Steingraber’s Pursuit of a Healthy Environment

Click here to access article from EcoWatch.

We read and hear almost daily mainstream media reports celebrating the new energy bonanza that shale fracking is providing our nation. We rarely hear anything about the hazards associated with this new industry. People in communities located near fracking operations have been fighting back against such practices and appealing to official representatives, regulators, environmental organizations, media, etc; however with little success. Why is this?

Energy is vitally needed to fuel the engines of capitalism in order to supply the One Percent with their addictive drugs--wealth and power. It seems that nothing will stand in their way to obtain their drugs--not extremes of wealth and poverty throughout the world, not the health of people, or not the health of the planet. They will go to any lengths to block any opposition to the practice of the system, capitalism, that supplies them with these drugs. They bribe legislators, install their own people in regulatory agencies, throw money around to local officials and environmental organizations, and more:
The industry started pouring millions of dollars into advertising campaigns and building highly disciplined PR operations. Gas companies believed they were fighting an insurgency. As a result, they hired former U.S. military psychological operations, or psy-ops, experts comfortable in dealing with localized issues and local governments.
I watched Steingraber's interview with Bill Moyers on his program over the weekend. I was very impressed with this very knowledgeable, articulate, and dedicated activist, scientist and mother. She spent Earth Day in jail for her opposition. In the interview she covers a lot issues and her activist activities in relation to shale fracking. This article gives you quite a lot about her background and her struggle against fracking without proper regulation and health studies. In both the article and her TV interview she gives clear explanations about the hazards of associated with this industry. 
"Before it is sent down the borehole, the fresh water used to fracture bedrock is mixed with inherently toxic materials. These include known and suspected carcinogens, neurological toxicants, and chemicals linked to pregnancy loss,” she explained. “At least one thousand truck trips are required to frack a single well. These trucks—along with earth-moving equipment, compressors, and condensers—release or create soot, volatile organic compounds, and ozone. Exposure to this kind of air pollution has demonstrable links to asthma, stroke, heart attack, cancers and preterm birth."
Because I am very conflicted about which I should post on this website: her TV interview or the article, I decided to let you choose which or to opt for both. Here is the 46:16m TV interview:

To Reclaim Our Future, We Must Change the Present: Our Proposal for Changing the System and not the Climate

Click here to access article from La Via Campesina.

This voice of the "international peasants movement" declares the following:
Humanity and nature are now standing at a precipice. We can stand idle and continue the march into an abysmal future too dire to imagine, or we can take action and reclaim a future that we have all hoped for.
Then the article explains what is needed to be done to "reclaim a future".

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

“Human Beings Have No Right to Water” and other Words of Wisdom from Your Friendly Neighborhood Global Oligarch

Click here to access article by Andrew Gavin Marshall from his blog. 

God! I loved this piece. The author uses the example of a top executive of the largest multinational food product corporation to illustrate some fundamental principles and practices of current capitalist operations. You will learn how he like other top players in this game are very well connected to the most powerful corporate, governmental, and other political institutions in the world. 

He and others like him are the key agents of the international ruling capitalist class, the most powerful of whom are wedded to their instrument of violence, NATO, which is used in areas of the world where their most powerful institutions, the IMF and the World Bank, are unable to be effective. You will learn how the latter act as agents of privatization.

You will learn how this Nestlé Chairman goes to great pains to rationalize his conduct and that of his corporation. As a human being--and he is a human being--one must believe in what one is doing in order to be successful. Thus, self-delusion is a key psychological mechanism that permits him to act in ways that exploit people and nature which results in most of the disasters we see occurring almost daily across the globe. His rationalizations attempt to reconcile the fundamental dictum of all capitalists--"to maximize short-term profits for shareholders"--with social justice and an ecologically sustainable planet. 

This brilliant young Canadian is working very hard for us in the 99 Percent and fighting for a healthy planet that can assure the continued existence of the human race. You can be sure that he will get no support from any well established institution to do this work. It is up to us to support him in this great contest between the One Percent and the 99 Percent.

Meet the New Enforcement Chief of the SEC – The Guy Who Orchestrated Last Year’s Discredited National Mortgage Settlement on Behalf of Wall Street

Click here to access article by Pam Martens from Wall Street on Parade.

It is clear why he was hired for this job of policing Wall Street: his resume demonstrates exceptional ability to defend the interests of the financial-Wall Street elites. He is one of the foxes guarding the public's hen-house.

Paying the Price for Financial Ignorance

Click here to access article by Don Quijones from Raging Bull-Shit

This is an excellent, understandable introduction to the biggest scam ever perpetrated on the human race by a small group known colloquially as "banksters". I am looking forward to viewing the film at the end of the article.

Also, read here what other knowledgeable people have said about banking and the creation of money down through the ages. Unfortunately, many of these people were a part of the ruling class that used this money creating power to secure their dominance over society. Thus, they were very conflicted individuals. The quote I like best was by John K. Galbraith:
The process by which banks create money is so simple the mind is repelled.
Although the method is basically simple, the elaborate history of its development and methods used to conceal it are quite complicated.

400,000 Hiroshima Atomic Bombs Per Day

Click here to access article by Robert Hunziker from Dissident Voice

In this piece the author gives us the highlights of a lecture by James Hansen, one of world's most renowned climate scientists, in which he addresses various issues related to climate change. I posted the 17:51m video of his lecture on my blog a year ago; and if you missed it, I urge you to listen to it. The pricey TED conference lectures are presumably attended mostly by members of the One Percent or who serve the interests of the One Percent. 

Monday, April 22, 2013

Provocative Documentary by Woody Harrelson [updated commentary]

Note: This was originally posted on 4-16-2013.
Click here to access article by Stuart Jeanne Bramhall from her blog The Most Revolutionary Act.

This political refugee is now living and working in New Zealand after fleeing from FBI harassment when she was living in Seattle. Here she offers a review of this documentary which I highly recommend after only watching the first 16 minutes of it. The YouTube version is posted in her article and also the documentary can be purchased online.
In my opinion, it has powerful take home lessons for Americans across the political spectrum. Largely because it addresses what I view as the two main obstacles to political change in the US 1) the immense power private banks enjoy via their control over the money supply and 2) the enormous power the corporate media exerts over public information.

4-22-2013: I finally got around to viewing the whole film last night, and I was very disappointed. I wonder if Bramhall had viewed the whole film. I think I, and others, were "taken for a ride", a ride that I will identify as a "gatekeeping operation" by agents of the One Percent to manage the dissent of people exposed to left-wing political analysis.

It started off very well by citing various themes on the left regarding hidden corporate power undermining democratic institutions and shaping our minds in support of wars and the mindless consumption of products. But, then it ends up citing the dangers of one world government, a favorite right-wing conspiracy theme, and declaring that we have an easy way to deal with these hidden powers--by making suitable shopping decisions! This seductive gatekeeping was designed to lure in leftists in the early section by citing themes that they were already familiar with, then having hooked them (as they did me), they lead them into ideological dead ends. 

The first dead end was by claiming that we were being led to a one world government. Here we see, as is frequently the case with right-wing propaganda, that government is the problem, albeit world government. That claim, of course, doesn't at all follow from the preceding section of the film. The second dead end was the silly shopping weapon that people supposedly can use to oppose corporate policies and activities.

CISPA: Worse Than The Patriot Act + CISPA Internet Blackout April 22

Click here to access material from RT and Anonymous posted on Dandelion Salad.

The benefits reaped from the Boston bombing by our masters in the One Percent continue to unfold. The imminent passage of the latest version of CISPA is probably the most immediate and important benefit to them. It will substantially aid in their construction of a police state by making available to corporations and government spy organizations complete access to your internet activities and sites where you bank, get medical care, and other personal information. For heaven's sake, don't be fooled or lulled into complacency by Obama's threat to veto it.

For more details on this bill I recommend this, this, and this.

The FBI Boston-Chechnya charade

Click here to access article by Pepe Escobar from Asia Times Online.
The FBI narrative includes exploits worthy of the Die Hard franchise, such as Dzhokhar running over his brother Tamerlan’s body - enveloped in a suicide vest - in a stolen SUV, and crashing a massive police barricade.
It would be so convenient to pigeonhole the Tsarnaev brothers as Chechen terrorists. But that’s not the case.
I also recommend this article entitled "‘Boston Bombers’ Tsarnaev brothers: Where the dots won't connect" from RT.

And, also this article by Matthew Stevenson in NYTimes eXaminer entitled "Reichstag Smoke and Mirrors in Boston" in which the author raises numerous questions and doubts about the official story.

The dangerous dreams of Slavoj Žižek

Click here to access article by Jerome Roos from Reflections on a Revolution.

Elements of capitalist indoctrination affect nearly everybody, sadly even those who purport to be on the left. Here the author examines symptoms of authoritarian, elitist type elements that appear in the statements of Žižek. To get it right this time, we must be aware of such reactionary thinking so that we can effectively prevent its insidious influence in our organizing efforts to build a new world.
Žižek’s misplaced tribute to Thatcher and his diatribe against direct democracy reveal the dangerous messianic tendencies of his “radical” philosophy.

Weakest quarter for clean energy investment since 2009

Click here to access article by Ethan Zindler from Bloomberg

As an ironic commemoration of Earth Day today, I thought I would post this piece to provide another sad piece of evidence that our masters in the One Percent have little desire to use renewable energy technologies. It appears that such technologies impair their never-ending quest for immediate profits.
Global investment in clean energy in the first three months of 2013 was lower than in any quarter for the past four years, according to the latest figures from research company Bloomberg New Energy Finance.

Sunday, April 21, 2013

FBI Caught in a Web of Lies in Boston

Click here to access article from Activist Post.

The evidence keeps mounting that the Boston bombing was another FBI project as supported by this well documented report. It looks like the remaining alleged perpetrator who is in the hospital in serious condition is also a key threat to the story concocted by the FBI with full collaboration of mainstream media, and thus his life may be in danger.

The three FBI lies all relate to this question:
Why did the FBI make a spectacle out of releasing the photos of the alleged Boston bombing suspects to the public feigning ignorance on who they were, asking for the public's help to identify them, when they knew all along who they were?