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, January 5, 2019
Zuesse starts out to report on the reporting inaccuracies of major media corporations which is well known to anyone on the left, but then reveals what I have witnessed in the past several years: that the CIA has been posting pseudo-researched articles on Wikipedia, one of the foundation sites of alternative media.
As I understand Wikipedia's policies, anyone can do an entry if its factual material is backed by links to documentation. Zuesse confirms my suspicions that Wikipedia will accept entries if it uses documentation that are faulty--and there is now an abundance of deceptive information spread by corporate media. Knowing what I know about the CIA related to their infiltration of media corporations, I have long wondered when they would get around to posting fake or heavily biased entries on Wikipedia's website. Zuesse cites some dramatic examples of this. To be sure, the overwhelming number of entries are still based on solid research, but one must be alert to this growing trend.
Friday, January 4, 2019
- Arab Media Outlets on Withdrawal of US Forces from Syria: What is Next? by Yuriy Zinin from New Eastern Outlook.
- Chomsky’s Unearned Prestige by Eric Zuesse from Strategic Culture Foundation. The author takes down Chomsky with his critique of Chomsky's contribution to the Manufacturing Consent that he co-authored with longtime socialist Edward Herman. I wonder why Herman collaborated with Chomsky.
- Watch the 11th Online Vigil for Julian Assange Live on
Friday Night[tonight], a reminder by Consortium News. It's actually a three hour broadcast that begins at 8 PM ET/5 PM PT.
- BSNews Person of the Year for 2018 – Vanessa Beeley by Alison Banville from BS News. Yay! She finally receives the recognition she so well deserves!
This week, to end the year, Cindy chats with Syrian-born, political analyst and author, Sarah Abed about Trump's recent announcement of US troop withdrawal from Syria. As noted in the interview, the US was an uninvited participant anyway that has sided with the terrorists against the sovereign government of Syria. The Democrat-liberal reaction to Trump's announcement was also very interesting.
... it’s psychopathic oligarchs who are keeping us asleep in the Matrix. And instead of code, it’s narrative.
Society is made of narrative like the Matrix is made of code. Identity, language, etiquette, social roles, opinions, ideology, religion, ethnicity, philosophy, agendas, rules, laws, money, economics, jobs, hierarchies, politics, government, they’re all purely mental constructs which exist nowhere outside of the mental noises in our heads.
Thursday, January 3, 2019
With the exception of the few who comprehend the nature of a Faustian Bargain, some billionaires, captains of industry and their political and media mouthpieces are driving humanity toward self-destruction through the two biggest enterprises on Earth, the fossil fuel industry, which is devastating the Earth atmosphere, and the industrial-military machine leading toward nuclear war. The rest of the world is dragged subconsciously, induced by bread and circuses.
- Trump bows to domestic pressure by delaying his withdrawal from Syria; a storm is gathering in the Levant by Elijah J. Magnier from his blog.
- Syria and Afghanistan: Two Different Realities by Andre Vltchek from New Eastern Outlook.
- Amos Oz Remembered: The Sharp Talons of a Zionist “Dove” by Mike Peled from Mint Press News.
- Fight for net neutrality continues as Congress exposes its own corruption by Evan Greer from Fight for the Future.
- Rick Sanchez blasts Israel loyalty oath sweeping US, video featuring Rick Sanchez from RT. Click here if you wish to access the video directly from RT.
Wednesday, January 2, 2019
He clears up most of the confusion about the genocide that has been practiced on Native Americans throughout the history of the European conquest of the North American continent. Because I was running out of time and energy, I mostly scanned this piece which I found to be excellent. I only had one objection which was in reference to President Trump when the author wrote the following:
... in the age of Trump, the terms of discourse have shifted once again.This is not "the age of Trump". Such a designation puts far too much significance of the Trump presidency. Trump was only elected because Americans did not trust Hillary Clinton. Our masters selected Trump to run against her because they surely thought that Americans would vote for her as the lesser evil. Well, I guess they thought Trump was the "lesser evil", and maybe they were right.
Instead, I would put it as "the Age of Post 9/11" which injects far more meaning to our age. So much has changed in the USA, and I am only beginning to be aware of it. Certainly we lost the anti-war movement, but also there has been a change in the personalities of most Americans. It seems to me that they, for the most part, have become more cruel and intolerant of others, more militaristic, and resist and resent any questioning of authority; and all of this is covered over by a veneer of politeness and a Pollyanna attitude.
This knowledgeable author regarding the US history of education illustrates how a ruling class, based on a system that delivers them power, has exercised overwhelming influence over our education. This is a corollary of a general rule that states that a ruling class will exercise control over every institution of their societies in order to insure their rule and the virtues of the system that delivers them power. He carefully explains the development of education in the USA which reflected the influence of the growing power of the US capitalist class.
In the U.S., a state supported mass educational system was constructed as a means to transform white settler-colonists into citizens (yet restricting suffrage rights of white women) based on the ideological and legal dictates of white supremacy, capitalism, heteropatriarchy and Christian doctrine. To safeguard these undemocratic structures, citizenship in the U.S. was attached to a mythical belief that all citizens are endowed with a legal right of parity of participation in most aspects of political, economic and civic life. Foundationally, this duplicitous project required the construction of a uniform and standardized system of schooling in order to produce a common fidelity to the nationalistic aims of the opulent white elite.Yet our masters realized that real education could also threaten their rule. To prevent this from happening they loaded their curricula with the "nationalistic aim of shaping future workers, whether 'native or foreign born, rural or urban' into a God fearing, capable and loyal industrial citizenry". In other words, they loaded the curricula of US education with self-serving propaganda. The author explains:
Intent on creating a common culture within the republic, many members of this elite class advocated for common schools as an efficient means to provide a “moral education” for future generations of the labor force in order to instill “character, discipline, virtue, and good habits.” Basic literacy skills fit into this plan, yet “analytical ability” and “knowledge of the world” did not. This righteous calling required an autocratic apparatus, one that could pacify and instill loyalty in its subjects while disciplining their minds and controlling their bodies. It also had to be vested in, and capable of, executing social and cultural reproduction. Common schools were set up to become that instrument: a compulsory mass education system with the nationalistic aim of shaping future workers, whether “native or foreign born, rural or urban” into a God fearing, capable and loyal industrial citizenry. [my emphasis]
The author presents some excellent lessons to be learned from experiences of past anti-capitalist movements. We must study the history of each movement to build on their successes and to eliminate their weaknesses, or we will go down with the capitalist ruling classes in their final acts of self destruction.
I especially liked this passage that emphasized the need to build networks and organization based on bottom-up principles:
... dire need to continue to develop networks of alternative media that provide a bottom-up account of radical social movements. Sites like Révolution Permanente, Wikipedia, and Mediapart are providing some of the more reliable coverage in French, along with Enough Is Enough, CrimethInc., and IGD in English. But these platforms could have greater visibility and support, and be part of a larger network of resources to help educate and agitate for revolutionary social transformation. They are an essential part of the anti-capitalist toolkit, and we need to continue to build autonomous but federated activist media platforms that can inform the public by developing the counter-narratives necessary for the coordination of mass revolutionary movements.On the other hand, I haven't had much sympathy for anarchists. I think too many of their actions have been informed by a profound lack of historical information. From my experience, the average anarchist suffers from myopia, that is, they can only see in what is in front of them, or their immediate experience of repression. They lack years of study of authentic material that might give them insights on battling the far more sophisticated ruling classes. Thus, they are often deceived and led down paths that accomplish nothing constructive.
A recent post from this website entitled "The Threat to Rojava: An Anarchist in Syria Speaks on the Real Meaning of Trump’s Withdrawal" offers an illustration of this. The author(s) is/are much too close to the Kurds to maintain any objectivity, and his/her/their lack of understanding of the geopolitics of the region also permeates this perspective. The author/authors can only see what is in front of him/her/them.
An effective revolutionary movement must understand what they are doing because the ruling capitalist classes have abundant resources and highly skilled upper-middle-class people, who they have pampered and co-opted, to mislead them down dead-end paths of activity. We must do our political homework to be effective! We must build our own organizations of independent journalists and educators, which are always informed by bottom-up organizing principles, to help us understand what is really going on in the world, and we must support and defend these journalists (Julian Assange is a prime example) and educators from persecution from capitalist authorities.
A sound revolutionary movement will have successes, and these successes will lead to other successful outcomes. You can't expect comfortable, highly educated, upper-middle-class people to abandon their advantages without some promise of success.
Tuesday, January 1, 2019
Dolack chastises US lefts for being supportive of the withdrawal of occupying US troops in Syria:
... the bizarre and unprecedented case — even if accidental — of an alternative society partly reliant on a U.S. military presence seems to have confused much of the U.S. Left. Or is it simply a matter of indifference to a socialist experiment that puts the liberation of women at the center? Or is it because the dominant political inspiration comes more from anarchism than orthodox Marxism?First, notice that he exhibits symptoms of identity politics by asking rhetorically "is it simply a matter of indifference to a socialist experiment that puts the liberation of women at the center?"
Most of the commentary I have seen from U.S. Leftists simply declares “we never support U.S. troops” and that’s the end of it ....
Dolack then thinks he bolsters his argument by raising the issue of support of the Allied fight against the fascism of Nazi Germany and fascist Italy. I notice that he does not raise any questions about the prelude to WWII when the Spanish Republic was torn to pieces by Nazi Germany and fascist Italy in the Spanish Civil War while the Allies stood by in "neutrality". The Trotskyist Socialist Workers Party was absolutely right when they argued that WWII "was an inter-imperialist dispute". Perhaps Dolack's position is that fascism was defeated in WWII. But, what do we have today under the domination of the US-Anglo Empire but fascism?
The Kurds in this region were very shortsightedly pragmatic in their pursuit of autonomy. They paved the way for US troops and numerous bases in Syrian territory under their control in order to pursue their own Kurdish agendas: the Kurd's version of über alles that included dominance over all the Syrians living in the areas under their military control. Meanwhile, they enabled the USA in their open agenda to remove Assad from power, and caused widespread devastation with millions fleeing for their lives to Europe.
The Kurds and their Western allies like David Gruber were experts at depicting these Kurds as putting "the liberation of women at the center"--another fake use of identity politics. Many independent journalists put the lie to such deceptions; see this, this, and this. Whenever people say one thing and do another, they are attempting to deceive you. Always believe what they do to indicate what they really believe.
In this article Dolack seems to offer an excellent illustration of a comfortable, highly educated, upper-middle-class person living in the USA who has swallowed much of corporate media propaganda and the indoctrination he received in long years of schooling. This experience likely prepared him to believe the revolutionary ideology of the Syrian Kurds that a few "leftists" have spread throughout left periodicals and websites.
Sunday, December 30, 2018
This is the first indication I've seen in the USA that the ruling capitalist class is beginning the process of converting to digital money which they control. They will know when, where, and what you spend money on. But far worse, the next time there is a financial bust by major banks, our masters will be able to simply take money out of your digital accounts to bailout the banks.
... as the WSJ report points out, consider that on every US bill the following words appear: “This note is legal tender for all debts, public and private.” However, currently there's no federal law stipulating that business have to accept cash when offered, though likely no body of lawmakers prior to the modern advent of payment by plastic could have ever envisioned such a dilemma as cash being banned by stores.While it could be true that "no body of lawmakers" could see this happening, it is very likely that our masters in the Deep State did. There has already been a test run in India where the government was induced by various agents of the US Empire to convert to the digitalization of money.
Gowans is a long time Canadian political analyst on the left. I regard him as one of a handful of top political analysts in the world.
In today's post he explains why the US capitalist ruling class has become so concerned about China's technological and economic progress to the point that they are now engaging in an economic war, and even considering a military war, against China. This startling turn of events was historically initiated by