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, February 9, 2019

'US revealed its villainy full-frontal by backing regime change in Venezuela' – Lee Camp

Click here to access article and video from the post of Redacted Tonight featuring commentary and satire by Lee Camp and a special appearance by RT's Dan Cohen. The video is reproduced below. (I thank an activist for this post.)

Friday, February 8, 2019

Bahrain opposition begins armed resistance against ‘Saudi occupation’

Click here if you wish to access the following video directly from the Middle East Observer.
A prominent Bahraini opposition leader says his al-Wefaq movement has begun carrying out increasingly sophisticated armed resistance operations against the ruling al-Khalifa government and the “Saudi occupation”.

Sayyed Murtada al-Sanadi said that the ruling al-Khalifa monarchy and its Saudi backers gave no opportunity for dialogue or negotiations despite eight years of peaceful protests by the opposition.
I've recently wondered what happened to the Bahraini protests of which I posted numerous articles in 2011 (see this, this, and this). Well, it appears that they have evolved into an armed resistance against the rule of the Saudi friendly family rule of Khalifa. Although Bahrain is supposed to be a constitutional monarchy, look at the Wikipedia entry to find out who staffs all the important government posts. Incidentally, or maybe not, the US Empire has a major naval base in Bahrain that supports the Fifth Fleet

Macron Tactics Against Yellow Vests Have Nothing to Do with Public Safety, Everything to Do with Global Politics

Click here to access article by Vanessa Beeley from Mint Press News (based in Minneapolis).

This independent British journalist brings her cameras to show us via her photos and videos what it is like on the battlefields of the streets of France. The capitalist government is obviously at war with the Gilets Jaunes who represent a cross section of ordinary people of France. The governments forces have added more vicious weapons to their arsenal, and their strategies reflect a desire to punish French people for protesting government policies that support the rich at their expense.
PARIS (Analysis)  — “For more than two months the people who come out into the streets are met with governmental repression. Since the 17th November 2018 we have been on the streets but we have not been listened to.” The statement from the Yellow Vests —  or Gilets Jaunes (GJs) as they are better known in France — was published just before Saturday February 2, 2019, when tens of thousands of GJs took to the streets of cities nationwide for Acte XII (Week 12) of the protests that have been a weekly event since they first began on November 17, 2018.

The GJ movement has taken France by storm since its sudden appearance after the increasingly unpopular President Emmanuel Macron introduced a number of measures that appeared to protect the French wealthy elite while penalising those already on the brink of poverty. The increase in the fuel tax was the final straw that broke the back of the already pressurized population struggling to make ends meet every month.
Beeley sums up what her cameras cannot show--the significance of these mass protests:
I saw environmental activists, anarchists, women’s rights movements, animal rights groups, human rights groups marching side by side. I heard animated political discussions among protesters and I saw children carried aloft on their parents shoulders blowing whistles and participating in an event that will surely shape their future. The march was a riot of color. For the first time in a very long time I felt a sense of optimism and belief in the power of the “little people” to reverse the tide of globalism and capitalist adventurism that is sweeping our world. As one of the posters for Acte XII stated: “The powerful will only stop dominating us when the little people stop crawling.” 

Thursday, February 7, 2019

Recommended articles for Thursday, February 7, 2019

Reformists (they were formerly called "liberals") such as Swanson view the system of capitalism as being like gravity--a fact of reality--instead of a man-made system designed to advance the acquisition of wealth and power by a small group. Thus to obscure reality, Swanson substitutes "plutocracy" to designate the possession of power and extreme wealth by a tiny minority instead of capitalism which has provided this tiny class with tremendous power and extreme wealth. He obviously believes, like so many others, that we can have capitalism without extreme inequality of influence and wealth. Such a belief flies in the face of all the devastation and the wars of the 20th century, and the gross inequality that we see today.
If I were simple-minded, it would be easily to conclude that the reason that humans will go extinct is because of people like Swanson. A more balanced conclusion would be that people like Swanson have contributed to the lack of resistance to a system that will cause the extinction of humans.

Last four years were hottest on record: UN [the article contains a must-view rare video evaluating capitalism]

Click here to access post from Al Jazeera. (This commentary includes the must-view video.)

I was astonished by this post. Its contents contained two short videos and text which appropriately pertained to data showing how the climate is warming. But the tacked-on video at the end of the article is where my astonishment kicked in. This 47:30 minute video is of primary importance to me because it provided so much evidence questioning the system of capitalism, and led up to, but just stopped short of, the issue of the system's threat of human extinction.

Nowhere is this kind of presentation present in mainstream media and it is scarcely mentioned even in what passes for alternative media. It seems that our capitalist overlords have expunged from our imaginations even thoughts about the system which provides them (via private ownership and control of socially performed economic activities) with overwhelming power and wealth. 

If necessary, view the short two videos and read the text in the article to learn about global warming; but if it isn't necessary because you are already convinced, it is absolutely essential that you view the entire video tacked on at the end of the article which I have reproduced below (view in full screen):

Wednesday, February 6, 2019

The Venezuela Phase of US Global Demise

Click here to access article by Finian Cunningham from Strategic Culture Foundation.

Cunningham borrows heavily from a Hudson article that I recently posted entitled "Trump’s Brilliant Strategy to Dismember U.S. Dollar Hegemony", and sees the recent move against Venezuela as a desperate attempt to maintain hegemony in a world where the Empire's influence is under siege by Russia and China. As a result, we live in dangerous times.
The configuration of chaos and conflict is a very dangerous one. The volatile mix could blow up into a global military confrontation. Washington’s desperation to avert its fate of demise could result in a one reckless aggression too far. A foolhardy invasion of Venezuela could be such a detonator.

Nevertheless, it is crucial to understand the present international precariousness as stemming from inherent American economic problems. That is the key factor that links up all the other seemingly disparate tensions and conflicts. Venezuela is but another demonstration of a wider structural problem centered on American capitalism’s collapse.

Russian, Chinese and other informed planners are presumably well aware of the fraught transition in global politics away from US imperial dominance. Moscow and Beijing hardly want a sudden collapse of American power because that could precipitate a disastrous military reaction. A gradual undermining and weakening of the dollar in a phased withdrawal is probably the safest way to defuse the American time bomb.

Venezuela Blitz – Part 1 [of ? parts]: Tyrants Don’t Have Free Elections

Click here to access article by an editor of Media Lens.

If you are like me, I don't follow news and commentary by media corporations. To do so requires one to wade knee-deep in the filth of self-serving propaganda and disinformation. Our ruling masters currently appear to having gone off the deep end by their ridiculous framing of events in Venezuela following the Empire's recognition of an unknown right-wing Venezuelan political figure who has dreams of political power. I keep wondering how long ordinary people residing in the areas of Empire control can stomach such obvious propaganda.

This article features corporate coverage from the British part of the Empire, but I think it is probably representative of all coverage from the various parts of the US/Anglo/Zionist Empire.
In our new book, we describe a 'Propaganda Blitz' as a fast-moving campaign to persuade the public of the need for 'action' or 'intervention' furthering elite interests. Affecting great moral outrage, corporate media line up to insist that a watershed moment has arrived – something must be done!

A classic propaganda blitz was triggered on January 23, when Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaidó declared himself 'interim President'. This was presented as dramatic new evidence that the people of Venezuela had finally had enough of Nicolas Maduro's 'regime'. 

Tuesday, February 5, 2019

Articles and videos recommended for Tuesday, February 5, 2019

NBC’s Bizarre Attack on Tulsi Gabbard

View the following recent broadcast by Rick Sanchez on his show on RT, an international media group based in Russia. He discusses how American journalists media have flocked to this media company because of many reasons: the pressures to present the news in ways supported by their corporate bosses, outright censorship, being forced to resign, not being hired in the first place but enjoying solid credentials elsewhere, etc. 

RT has functioned to serve all alternative media journalists in place of what I have argued for a domestic media agency. However, being based in Russia, our masters in the ruling capitalist class have found it so easy to keep Americans from accessing the alternative journalists and analysts on this website. I still argue for a domestic, grass-roots based media; but if that is not possible, I thoroughly recommend following alternative, independent journalists on RT.

Sanchez bemoans the deterioration of news and information reporting on corporate media, but his perspective is limited to the takeover of media by operatives of the US/Anglo/Zionist agents of the ruling capitalist class since the Reagan years, and especially since 9/11. I argue that before this era, censorship functioned in a far more insidious form. The ruling class influenced all institutions by their control of careers and by their dependence on other corporate sponsors. Because they have gotten away with so many lies in this current era, they have become emboldened and reckless in their current lies and deceptions.

Look into their eyes: Yellow Vests march through Paris blaming police for bloody violence (VIDEOS)

Click here to access article from RT

RT provides the latest video coverage I've seen on what is happening on the streets of Paris and beyond.
Yellow Vest protesters have returned to the streets of Paris to honor those injured in months of demonstrations and to condemn the police for using rubber-ball projectiles.

An estimated 13,800 people gathered between Daumesnil and Republic avenues, according to a count by Occurrence cited by Liberation.The police, however, provided lower estimates, stating that some 10,500 people turned out for the rally in Paris. All across France, around 58,600 people participated in the protests.

France: A new stage for the Yellow Vests Revolution

Click here to access a report by Dimitris Konstantakopoulos (the “Monsieur from Greece”), a Greek geopolitical analyst who is visiting an assembly of Yellow Vest activists in Commercy, France. 
... all these people awoke suddenly on the 17th of November 2018. Here at Commercy, the Yellow Vests took the song of the partisans, of the anti-Nazi resistance, and paraphrased it. Now the song calls for the “toothless”, the “lazy” and “illiterates” to rise against the Money Elite, sparing not their own tears and blood, just as the French patriots did when they fought against the Germans. ....

.... These are the people who en masse the French press and television channels, concentrated now more than ever before in the hands of the Financial Elite, is shouting on them,characterising them as “Fascists”, “anti-Semites”, “extreme right”, “populists,” “homophobes,” “sexists,” “racists,” “champions of violence” and everything else imaginable. Do the maths, compare between propaganda and truth, to get an accurate measure of the degree of dominating totalitarianism in which we live.

As for the main international media, they do everything possible to hide from their readers and viewers what is happening now in the very centre of Europe! With quite a success! It is an unprecedented situation for Europe after WWII!

ISIS could not return after US withdrawal from Syria and Iraq [updated]

Click here to access article by Kuwaiti independent journalist Elijah J. Magnier from his blog.

Magnier provides more evidence--as if you needed more--that the US/Anglo/Zionist Empire has been a key player behind the terrorist army in order to create regime change in Syria. The war criminals that lurk in the evil depths (the Deep State) and are in control of all major actions of the evil Empire have once again demonstrated that they will use any means to destroy their opponents and support the interests of the capitalist ruling class within the Empire. 

Meanwhile their media corporations, Hollywood films, and professional analysts will insure that most Americans ("the good Germans" of the 3rd Reich) know very little about their lies and monstrous acts. The author provides an excellent summary of the real story in Syria.

Update at 10:30 AM CT: A German blogger reports that the US is not leaving in an article entitled "Syria Sitrep - Trump Says U.S. Will Leave But Pentagon Keeps Adding Forces"

Monday, February 4, 2019

U.S. Coup Attempt In Venezuela Lacks International Support

Click here to access article by German blogger Bernhard from Moon of Alabama. (Added content from Al Jazeera at 8:54 AM CT.

It appears that only Israel and the southern colonies of the USA have so far gone along with the US's recognition of the President of Venezuela. The author reports that "only four [of the core members of the Empire in Europe] out of twenty eight EU states, Britain, France, Germany and Spain, ... were expected to announce support."

See this article for the latest update on the countries supporting US's recognition of Juan Guaido as President.

Sunday, February 3, 2019

Bernie's Disappointing Venezuela Tweet

Jimmy Dore interviews Mike Prysner and Abby Martin who have just returned from Venezuela. He asks them about their reactions to Bernie Sanders' statement and other matters. It appears to me from their remarks that Bernie could do a rerun of his actions in 2016 (sheepherding activists into the Democratic Party) and get away with it. See if you agree.

Saving the Earth or Saving Capitalism? The Inconvenient Truth Behind Today’s Youth Climate Campaigns

Click here to access this one hour audio post from Global Research (based in Canada).
This week's Global Research News Hour, we consider the possibility that some of the most prominent climate campaigns on the planet, including the Greta Thunberg-led Climate Strikes are in fact being co-opted by the world's most prominent financial elites, via vehicles like large environmental NGOs, to serve a pre-existing agenda having more to do with expanding capitalism than reversing or mitigating climate change. Independent investigative journalist Cory Morningstar is our guest for the hour, and she expands on the theme of her recent series of articles: "The Manufacturing of Greta Thunberg – for Consent."

A new abnormal: It is still two minutes to midnight

Click here to access article by editor, John Mecklin from the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists. (To access article, you will need to scroll down past the introduction by the president & CEO to the article dated January 24, 2019.)
Humanity now faces two simultaneous existential threats, either of which would be cause for extreme concern and immediate attention. These major threats—nuclear weapons and climate change—were exacerbated this past year by the increased use of information warfare to undermine democracy around the world, amplifying risk from these and other threats and putting the future of civilization in extraordinary danger.