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 6, 2019

Kurds in Fateful Triangle as US Moves to Redeploy IS Terror Groups

Click here to access article by Finian Cunningham from Strategic Culture Foundation. (If you have difficulty like I had in accessing this article, you may find it also posted here.) (This commentary was edited for greater clarity at 7:30 AM CT.)

The Kurds have once again demonstrated (like in Iraq) that they know very little about the ventures they enter in, especially seeking an alliance with, and the protection of, US Forces. Their dream of establishing their own state carved out of Syria and Iraq is going nowhere fast. However, there is increasing evidence that their use by US Forces is another deception imposed upon the American public who are confused by the 24/7 bombardment of fake news. The author who is based in the Middle East offers more evidence that US actions in Syria are creating more mischief.
Kurdish fighters have been used by the US to ostensibly defeat the remaining Islamic State holdouts in eastern Syria. But what is emerging is not a final defeat of the terrorists, more a redeployment to further destabilize the Arab country.

Potentially, the Kurds could wind up not with the regional autonomy they desire, but as part of a rebranded American dirty war army whose ranks include the very terrorist the Kurdish militias have been successfully battling against.

President Donald Trump has been lately crowing about how US-backed Kurdish forces have wiped out the IS self-proclaimed caliphate around Baghouz in eastern Syria. “They’re losers… they’re gone tonight,” he boasted about supposedly vanquishing the jihadists.

However, things are not that clear-cut.
I have a hunch (only a hunch) that the US Deep State (read my commentary to this post) has leaned on (mostly by ignoring his policy decisions) Trump so much that he, in self-defense, has compromised away his nationalist policy decisions to approach those of the Deep State's neoliberal (transnational) policies. The appointments to key offices like Pompeo and Bolton are examples of this. I now consider Trump to be something like a "useful idiot" who has been forced to serve the neoliberal and imperial policies of the Deep State. I wouldn't be surprised if the latter doesn't mind his reelection in 2020.

Friday, April 5, 2019

Articles recommended for Friday, April 5, 2019

More tongue-in-cheek satire of the ruling class's fake news which attempts to mess with your mind.

Can We Feed the World without Destroying It?

Click here to access article by Eric Holt-Giménez, Executive Director of Food First

The author clarifies how the capitalist system affects food production, but has unrealistic hopes about the Green New Deal's ability to transform the present system into one that empowers all of humanity instead of capitalism which serves the needs of a tiny minority of "owners".

 He writes:
The food movement has been very good at developing alternatives, but it hasn’t been good at addressing the systemic barriers to good, clean, fair food for all. Some even seem to think that we can transform our food system in isolation of the larger, political-economic system in which it is embedded. That system is capitalism and it has co-evolved with our food system, so clearly we can’t change one without changing the other.

The good news is that the food system has always been a pivotal pillar in capitalism, so if we can push systemic changes within the food system, it will influence the rest of the system. That’s why things that seem utopic, like insisting on the human right to food and food sovereignty, are so important. To the extent we can ensure these rights, we dismantle capitalism.
But pins his hopes on the Green New Deal:
... whatever you are doing—studying, gardening, in a CSA [link], whatever—thank you, and keep doing it. Now, you need to do something else: change everything! Let’s catch the momentum of the Green New Deal to build a powerful, broad-based, working class and people of color-led movement for transformation. Let’s create the political will not just for reforms, but for transformative, structural reforms that put us solidly on the road to food sovereignty and to cooling the planet. [my inserted link]
Like the New Deal under the Roosevelt administration, the Green New Deal won't be allowed to empower people at the expense of capitalists. Only an organized revolutionary people can do that. The Green New Deal, under capitalist controlled political system, likes its predecessor, will only protect the present ruling class from any substantial changes. He essentially admits that in the first paragraph.

Thursday, April 4, 2019

Articles recommended for Thursday, April 4, 2019

The Green New Deal

by Ron Horn

I became aware of this phrase sometime late last year, and when I became aware that it was a push by members of the Democratic Party, most especially the newly elected Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, I dismissed it as another ploy to distract ordinary people of the USA from the ongoing efforts of our capitalist ruling class to satisfy their addiction to wealth/power while pretending to confront climate destabilization about which a growing number of ordinary citizens are becoming alarmed. However, I became aware today after reading an article posted on System Change not Climate Change that it was having a distracting effect among people who are concerned about the issue much like the Russiagate phenomenon served to distract attention from all real issues.

Thus, I have perused online posts and selected what I regard as accurate information about the Green New Deal. Let me be clear: I do not entirely agree with all the opinions expressed in these articles. I still insist that nothing short of a worldwide, thoroughly democratic revolution that puts people in charge of the world's economies would be the solution to the climate crisis. Time is fast running out and I can't imagine this happening in time to avoid the destabilization of our climate and our own extinction as a human species (along with many other species).

In order to understand the terms used to describe Congressional actions, I've selected the following resources: Non-binding resolution and H.Res.109 - Recognizing the duty of the Federal Government to create a Green New Deal.

The following are the online posts I've selected (some I've posted before):

Wednesday, April 3, 2019

Belt and Road Initiative in Full Swing in Europe

Click here to access article by Federico Pieraccini from Strategic Culture Foundation.

The author writes about his take on the recent visit by top Chinese officials to Europe to confer with the top European officials. China poses a threat to the Empire's uni-polar world as they dangle economic rewards that the Belt and Road Initiative offers to European capitalists. He writes:
No European capital – whether it be Paris, Rome, Berlin or London – intends to break the Atlantic pact with Washington. This is confirmed at every possible formal occasion. However, as Beijing becomes more and more central to questions concerning technology or the supply of liquid capital for investments or business expansion, the changes to the global order seem unstoppable.
The author reaches this conclusion:
It is no coincidence that for US strategists the two greatest dangers lie in the possibility of Moscow and Beijing, or Moscow and Berlin, cooperating and coordinating their efforts. The Berlin-Moscow-Beijing triangle, with the addition of Rome and Paris, represents a scenario for Washington that is unprecedented in terms of its challenge to US hegemony in Europe. 

Pentagon Obsession: China, China, China

Click here to access article by Pepe Escobar from Strategic Culture Foundation

Escobar provides considerable evidence that the Deep State (see my version in the commentary for this post, in Tony Cartalucci's post, and Peter Dale Scott's description), the board of directors of the USA, is obsessed with China and to the threats it poses to the US/Anglo/Zionist Empire's interests of world domination.  
Chinese nuclear bombers. Chinese hypersonic missiles. Chinese carrier killer missiles. Chinese cyberattacks. Chinese anti-satellite weaponry. Chinese militarization of the South China Sea. Chinese Huawei spying.

So many Chinese “malign intentions”. And we’re not even talking about Russia.
He continues on to argue that Russian officials have the expertise to effectively counter the Empire's methods of hybrid warfare, and Chinese officials are avidly studying these methods.

Tuesday, April 2, 2019

Articles recommended for Tuesday, April 2, 2019

Abby Martin interviews former Technical Director of the National Security Agency, Bill Binney, who blew the whistle on warrantless spying years before Edward Snowden released the evidence. They discuss the US empire's mass surveillance program and dangers of the Intelligence Industrial Complex.
  • A Russiagate Requiem by CJ Hopkins. The master satirist offers his sarcastic, tongue-in-cheek (def.) commentary on the latest propaganda hoax. 

The CIA Takeover of America in the 1960s is the Story of Our Times

Click here to access article by Edward Curtin from his blog Behind the Curtain.

Curtin provides an extended commentary on a new book entitled A Lie Too Big To Fail: The Real History of the Assassination of Robert F. Kennedy by Lisa Pease.
As she rightly claims, the CIA takeover of America in the 1960s is the story of our time.  And our time is now.  None of this is ancient history.  That is so crucial to grasp.  For those who think that learning the truth about the 1960s assassinations is an exercise in futility reserved for those who are living in the past, they need to think again.  Our descent into endless war and massive media propaganda to support it is part of a long-term project that began with the elimination of JFK, Malcom X, MLK, and Robert Kennedy.  They were killed for reasons, and those reasons still exist, even if they don’t physically, but only in spirit.  Their killers roam the land because they have become far more deeply part of the institutional structure of government and the media.
This sums up the reaction of Curtin, myself, and so many others about these assassinations. Because Curtin is roughly of the same generation as I, he and I lived through these assassinations all of which presented major difficulties in their coverage by corporate and so-called public media (NPR, PBS, BBC, etc). Just as the Mueller report failed to find evidence of Russiagate which was pure propaganda, so they told lies about the assassinations back in the 1960s.

He writes:
If anyone wishes to understand what has happened to the United States since this coup, and thus to its countless victims at home and throughout the world, one must understand these assassinations and how the alleged assassins were manipulated by the coup organizers and how the public was hoodwinked in a mind-control operation on a vast scale.  It is not ancient history, for the forces that killed these leaders rule the U.S. today, and their ruthlessness has subsequently informed the actions of almost all political leaders in the years since.  A bullet to the head when you seriously talk about peace and justice is a not so gentle reminder to toe the line or else.

“But the way the CIA took over America in the 1960s is the story of our time,” writes Pease, “and too few recognize this."
As I wrote in a commentary for a post in 2017 regarding the rise of fascism in the USA before we entered WWII:
1938 Man of the Year in the January 2, 1939 issue of Time
 Many fascist capitalists in the evolving deep state at the time became aware that this war offered a splendid opportunity for US world dominance after the war was over. This informal project of the Deep State became known as the American Century, a term that was first coined by fascist-inclined Henry Luce, president of Time, Inc., a major multimedia corporation consisting of numerous mainstream publications, radio projects and newsreels. The publication of this article (by the same name) rallied the fascist wing of the US capitalist ruling class, which had previously hid under the label of "isolationism", to support the war against the Axis powers.
What I don't understand in Curtin's article is the following statement: "All that is now needed is a public tribunal, which is planned for later this year, in which the fundamental, clear-cut facts of these cases are presented to the American public." There have been calls from numerous Americans for Congress to re-open an investigation of these assassinations; but to my knowledge, there hasn't been any planned.

[Video] Thousands of students march in Brussels for action against climate change

Click here if you wish to access this video and brief introduction directly from Peoples Dispatch.
On Sunday, March 31, thousands of students marched in Brussels against the recent refusal by the Parliament to take action against climate change. This protest is a part of the series of demonstrations that have been taking place in Belgium and across Europe demanding action on climate change.

Monday, April 1, 2019

Land theft, ethnic cleansing, and Jewish supremacy: Israel’s settler colonialism in Syria’s Golan, the forgotten occupied territory

Click here to access article by Stephen Gowans from his blog What's Left.

Gowans strikes again! I mean this in the narrow sense that he pierces through the fog of the never-ending barrage of propaganda that Western academics who, while paying homage to their ruling class masters, imposed on us a highly distorted understanding of the history of that region since WWII. 

WWII was a pivotal event in world history. The old colonial powers quickly allied themselves after WWII with the intact and powerful USA to continue their old patterns of imperialism, that is, the desire to constantly expand their operations in pursuit of wealth and power over the rest of the world. WWII was merely a contest among fascist-inclined empires: the British Empire, the German/Italian empire (Third Reich), and the Japanese Empire. The British Empire was reduced to a shell of its former stature, but its ruling capitalists quickly allied itself with the ruling capitalist class in the US and created the state of Israel to obtain financial backing by fascist-inclined Jewish capitalists (Zionists) as well as a base in the energy-rich Middle East. 

Since then, the Empire's ruling transnational capitalist class has used technological advances to largely remove national boundaries that hindered their exploitation of working people all over the world in order to satisfy their insatiable appetite for greater wealth and power. Note that the latter clause implies what I firmly believe is an addiction.

I also believe, along with many others, that this historical development portends the end of the human species either in the short term as a result of a catastrophic nuclear war or in the long run (roughly 30 years) through the destabilization of our climate via the loading of our atmosphere with greenhouse gases because of the system's requirement of relatively cheap energy to satisfy this addiction.

Gowans performs a valuable service for us by his clarification of the often obscured history, especially since WWII, of this important region.

Sunday, March 31, 2019

The Surrealism of the Information War (Another commentary on this excellent article.)

Click here to access article by Gilbert Mercier from News Junkie Post. (Final paragraph revised somewhat for greater clarity on 4/1 at 11:52 AM CT.)

This article is very thought-provoking, and I would like to share some of my thoughts in my commentary.

Humans since the beginning of civilizations (about 2% of human existence) have been plagued with ruling classes who have tried to convince the rest that it is "their way or the highway", that is, their subjects must always accept their truths or they will be banished or punished in one way or another.

Truth has always been a slow awakening to insights about how our world functions and our place in it. Our creation of scientific methods has offered us a much more disciplined method of discovering truths. As the result of our efforts, we have learned much during recent centuries.

Basically we have learned that we are only a minuscule part of our planet's nature that has produced so many life forms, and we are rapidly destroying our own habitat. This insight is opposed by the current ruling class of capitalists because their very system has not only enabled them to dominate the rest of us to our detriment, but is the culprit responsible for the ongoing destruction of our habitat. We are also becoming aware that their system is responsible for creating extremes of living standards, wars, and many other hazardous conditions for the majority. Is it so surprising that our ruling capitalist class are energetically fighting such truths and proliferating fake news about what is happening in the world?

One of the effects I've been witnessing of this ongoing campaign of fake news is that many occupants in nations controlled by the US/Anglo/Zionist Empire exhibit behaviors that can be described as "deer caught in the headlights". This metaphor suggests that many occupants of the Empire have become mostly immobilized and unwilling to act for their own survival. I especially see indications of this among people in the USA where I live. This troubles me very much.

I think that the ongoing fake news and propaganda spread by our ruling class is largely responsible for this behavior. My fellow Americans are thoroughly confused, and in their confusion, they adopt a "don't rock the boat" kind of attitude. This attitude clashes with relatively few more independent thinkers who are terrified about the dangers posed by our rulers and their system, and who want to act.