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

Friday, April 18, 2014

The West Marches East, Part 1: The U.S.-NATO Strategy to Isolate Russia

Click here to access article by Andrew Gavin Marshall from The Hampton Institute.

As an antidote to the poison of the Empire's anti-Russian propaganda, Marshall provides us with some inconvenient current and historical facts. Ultimately, the Empire's actions boil down to this:
...the United States is the global 'Godfather' of the Mafia crime family of Western industrial nations (the NATO powers). Countries like Russia and China are reasonably-sized crime families in their own right, but largely dependent upon the Godfather, with whom they both cooperate and compete for influence.

When the Mafia - and the Godfather - are disobeyed, whether by small nations (such as Iraq, Syria, Libya, et. al.), or by larger gangster states like China or Russia, the Godfather will seek to punish them. Disobedience cannot be tolerated. If a small country can defy the Godfather, then any country can. If a larger gangster state like Russia can defy the Godfather and get away with it, they might continue to challenge the authority of the Godfather.
Of course, this is the nature of capitalism as it is for every system that privileges one segment of society over another. Such gangs end up competing with gangs from other nations for dominance, and we have inter-gang wars which ordinary people fight and die in. This will last as long as we tolerate gangs, as long as we tolerate privileges like private ownership of an economy over the needs of whole societies. We must stop believing all the lies of the gangsters that there is no alternative to the existing societal arrangements; and then, we must be prepared to sacrifice immediate comforts to fight against such gangster organizations.  

We have a choice: continue to accept these societal arrangements that make such gangs possible, their inter-gang wars, and all the other forms of suffering we endure, or we destroy these arrangements and construct egalitarian societies.